Your daily dose of news, notes and links from around Kansas University.
• A KU graduate has been named to a senior spot on the re-election campaign for President Barack Obama, Politico has reported.
Marlon Marshall will serve as deputy national field director for the Obama re-election campaign.
Marshall, a KU political science graduate, has participated in Dole Institute programs in the past. He had been serving as the field director for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
He was student body vice president in 2000-01, and president of Student Union Activities. Marshall, a native of St. Louis, is one of two student body vice presidents of color in KU’s history.
The other is Reggie Robinson, who served in 1978-79. Robinson is a former president and executive director of the Kansas Board of Regents who is currently teaching law at Washburn University.
• Here are a few upcoming events to honor the 150th birthday year of Elizabeth Miller Watkins, a large KU donor whose gifts to the university are worth more than $32.4 million today. All events are open to the public.
At 2 p.m. April 16 at Swarthout Recital Hall in Murphy Hall, the KU theater department will stage a new play “Elizabeth, Betsy and Bess: A Conversation with Elizabeth Watkins,” which chronicles her life.
The scholarship halls built by Watkins — Miller and Watkins halls — will host annual spring teas on April 17. Watkins’ will be at 1 p.m. and Miller’s will be at 2 p.m.
From April 18-23, Watkins Memorial Health Center will collect contributions from students to support the Roy and Pat McClain Good Samaritan Fund, which provides emergency aid for needy students and maintenance for Danforth Chapel.
And what’s a birthday without cookies and cake?
KU Endowment is serving cookies in Watkins’ honor from 11:30 to 12:30 p.m. April 19 at the Kansas Union.
Lawrence Memorial Hospital will serve the cake in her honor in the hospital’s atrium on April 20, immediately following the Board of Trustees meeting.
The Watkins Community Museum of History will host a conversation about Watkins with historian Mary Burchill at 6:30 p.m. April 21 at the museum, 1047 Mass.
Watkins was born on Jan. 21, 1861, and died on June 1, 1939.
• Student members of the Potter Lake Project continue to work on the KU landmark after working to secure funds to ensure the lake was dredged last year. (It still tickles me that they actually found a goalpost down there).
On Saturday, April 23, members of the group are scheduled to meet at 10 a.m. at the lake to plant switchgrass and clean up around the lake.
Peg Livingood, a KU landscape architect and project manager in the office of Design and Construction management, serves as the adviser to the group.
Livingood told me recently that she was very pleased with the efforts of the group to help save a campus landmark and continue to maintain it.
In fact, Livingood, who has worked to preserve a number of natural spaces on campus, said the lake was among her favorite spots anywhere.
“When you’re down there, you just feel like you’re away from everything,” she said.
• You don’t have to be a KU donor, a student body vice president or even a landscape architect to submit tips for Heard on the Hill. All you have to do is tell me something I don’t already know at firstname.lastname@example.org.