I first met Svante in 2006 at Cornell University. We were in a crowded room in Willard Straight Hall just after an Interfraternity Council (IFC) Meeting. I was the new president of a co-ed fraternity, and the only woman in the room. At that time, Svante was the IFC chair of Philanthropy. Nobody spoke with me during the entire meeting, and it made me feel awkward and unwelcome. As I turned to leave the room, Svante stepped in front of me and introduced himself with a smile and warm handshake. He welcomed me to the council and told me how glad he was that I would be part of the group. He made me feel valuable as someone with a diverse viewpoint, not an outcast. Over the next several years I had the pleasure of working and interacting with Svante in several other capacities.
I remain impressed with his determination, integrity, and personal character and I rest assured that Ithaca will flourish under his leadership.