Dear friends and colleagues:
It is with sadness that the HECAOD announces Connie Boehm’s departure from The Ohio State University as the Director of Student Life, Student Wellness and as the Associate Director of the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Drug Misuse Prevention. Connie Boehm has dedicated her life and will continue, to student success and wellness. The impact she has made is immeasurable with the students, colleagues, and friends she has worked with throughout her tenure in Ohio. The Center Affiliate (CA) program at the Higher Education Center was designed and implemented by Connie Boehm after the center reopened in 2014. The CAs spent time reflecting on Connie’s impact on their professional and personal lives and an effort to share the deep gratitude each one of them feels for Connie Boehm.
It is hard to describe the broad and deep impact that Connie Boehm has had on the field of prevention and wellness. Many people rightly think about how her work has positively impacted countless students who have gone to school at The Ohio State University—AND that impact is tremendous. Her work has allowed students to flourish. She was a pioneer in advocating for evidence-based strategies and then advocating for the necessary staff to do good work. An important part of her legacy is also the way she has mentored young professionals and colleagues across the country. Connie’s impact is felt from one end of the country to the other. She is tireless in her willingness to help others build meaningful positions and subsequently develop strong programs with intentional strategic plans that align with the mission.
Connie’s commitment to developing strong networks of professional colleagues was impressive. You could not be talking to Connie at a conference without her being interrupted a gazillion times with people she knows. Not to mention she was probably on the planning committees of more than her fair share of conferences. When Connie called us—we listened and did not dare say I’m too busy—she was and is tireless.
Connie did not even let school rivalry get in the way. As her longtime colleague and friend, she never made me leave off the M in my name when I would come to Columbus to visit and I thought that was a good sign.
I am grateful to have had the opportunity to work closely with her and I look forward to staying in touch with her as she starts her next chapter. I am sure I join the choir of folks at The Ohio State University and across the country who are better because we worked with her!
Mary Jo Desprez, MA
Director, Wolverine Wellness
University Health Service
University of Michigan
Connie was one of the first people I met coming into prevention in 2001. Since then, she, as a Maven of AOD work, has provided support, guidance, advice, and perspective. What a gift and a joy to work with you, Connie! Thank you for providing the opportunity to give back to the profession through the HEC Affiliates Program and for your unfailing encouragement, patience, and collaborative spirit!
Leslie Haxby McNeill
Office of Student Wellness
Ever since I first met Connie ten years ago, I have been impressed by her energy, dedication, knowledge, and persistence in the face of challenges to our field. I will always remember her flexibility, kindness, and steadfast passion for achieving goals in support of her students and colleagues and will remain thankful for the contributions she has made to our nation through her leadership at the Higher Education Center. I am truly proud to consider Connie a colleague and friend, and I wish her all the best in her future endeavors.
Dolores Cimini, Ph.D., Licensed Psychologist
Assistant Director for Prevention and Program Evaluation andDirector, Middle Earth Peer Assistance Program
Adjunct Clinical Professor, School of Education University at Albany
Connie is a friend and colleague of long standing. I first met her when involved with The Network Addressing Collegiate Alcohol & Other Drug Issues. It was with The Network that I first recognized Connie’s dedication and commitment to the field of prevention. Her AOD prevention work in higher ed and most recently, her role in reconstituting the Higher Education Center at Ohio State speak to this dedication and commitment. I, therefore, write this brief testimonial to offer my best wishes and thanks to one of those who has championed the cause of addressing high-risk and dangerous drinking in colleges and universities. Best wishes and may your future endeavors include shaping the next generation of AOD prevention professionals.
Robert J Chapman, PhD
Associate Clinical Professor (retired)
Behavioral Health Counseling
Whether it be through the work with OSU’s Student Life Student Wellness Center or the Higher Education Center, Connie has had such a positive impact on the field and how we approach holistic student well-being. Her contributions have not only created a safer and healthier place for students at OSU but she has impacted students across the national landscape through various leadership roles. Her impact will be seen for many years to come.
Thank you so much for all that you have done for us at OSU, and for all that you have taught me personally.
Assistant Director Office of Student Life Student Wellness Center
The Ohio State University
Connie Boehm is one of the finest prevention professionals in the country. They do not come any better. She is a down to the bone good person and has made such a difference in lives of prevention professionals around the country. I am a better person and professional because I have known her. She is going to be greatly missed. I hope she finds a job in Nebraska that will keep her in the field. She is the real deal.
Kim Dude M.Ed., MACSAPP
Associate Director of Student Life –Wellness Resource Center
Department of Student Life, University of Missouri
The Higher Education Center would like to thank Connie for her many years of dedication and service to the field of alcohol and drug prevention in higher education at The Ohio State University, her service as a Center Associate to the former Center, and the effort and energy put forth in restoring the Higher Education Center at Ohio State. We wish you the best of luck!