Cardinal Chronicle

FORMER PROVOST CONDOLEEZZA RICE SAYS that experience as a concert pianist helped her prepare for her primetime-televised speech at last week’s Republican Convention. “Playing Brahms helped me,” she says. “I wasn’t nervous. It was kind of fun.” In her speech Rice talked about presidential hopeful GEORGE W. BUSH and about her family’s history with the GOP. “The first Republican I knew was my father. He joined our party because the Democrats in Jim Crow Alabama of 1952 would not register him to vote. The Republicans did. My father has never forgotten that day, and neither have I.” Rice later explained that her parents had tried to register together. “My mother sailed through,” she says. “She was fair-skinned and pretty.” But her father, JOHN RICE, was told to guess how many beans were in a jar. “He refused to try,” Rice says. “It was meant to humiliate him.” The story goes that her father went to an elder in his church who knew some Republicans who were trying to build up their party in Democrat-dominated Alabama. “They helped get him registered,” Rice says. “He’s been a Republican ever since.”

THREE THOUSAND FOOT SOLDIERS IN THE battle against breast cancer marched through campus up Junipero Serra Boulevard on July 28. The Avon 3-Day Breast Cancer Walk from Cupertino to San Francisco included 200 survivors and many more touched by the disease ­ the most common form of cancer in women in this country. CARMINE SALVUCCI, of the Development Office, CATHERINE O’BRIEN from the Alumni Association, HOLLY HALEY KNAPP from Undergraduate Admissions and MYRNA IRIGON from Facilities Operations joined the walkers from Stanford. DORRENE ROSS from Gravity Probe B and KATE CHESLEY from University Communications rode in a motorcycle crew to keep the 60-mile-long route safe. Each participant raised at least $1,800 – money that will be used to support breast cancer medical research.

GROUNDS MANAGER HERB FONG REPORTS THAT a giant bottlebrush tree planted by Stanford’s first president, DAVID STARR JORDAN, recently fell victim to the Bio-X construction project on Campus Drive. “We tried to save the tree and move it, but because of a utility line under and near the tree the move was not possible,” Fong says. The 55-foot-tall bottlebrush, planted in 1893, was the largest Callistemon viminalis specimen Fong had ever seen. “A little history lost to development,” he laments. Although Jordan’s tree got the ax, grounds staff managed to save a smaller bottlebrush nearby. It’s not known whether the second tree had famous roots as well, but it certainly kept good company.

Write to Lisa Trei at or mail code 2245.