Goshen College graduates Atlee ’35 and Winifred Beechy ’38 returned to the campus in 1949 where they worked for the next 34 years, dedicating their lives to counseling and educating students within the broader context of promoting peace and justice in our communities, our nation and our world. Atlee served as dean of students, director of counseling services and professor of education, psychology and peace studies, helping found the college’s peace studies program. Winifred was a teacher, writer, coordinator of peace and social concerns for the Mennonite Church and served in numerous overseas relief and service assignments with Atlee.
Winifred and Atlee were co-leaders of the first Goshen College Study-Service Trimester in Poland (1974) and then in China (1980). They traveled to dozens of countries in the interest of international education, relief work and peace and justice concerns under the auspices of Goshen College, Mennonite Central Committee and other organizations. An alumnus of Goshen College and donor has chosen to memorialize and commemorate the lives of Atlee and Winifred Beechy, and the ideals of peace, justice and reconciliation by which they both lived.
This lectureship endowment fund is motivated by the exemplary commitments to peace, justice and reconciliation apparent in the daily and professional lives of Atlee and Winifred Beechy. The goal of the lectureship is to provide an annual opportunity for the college community to focus, re-examine and promote those ideals through a public lecture by a speaker knowledgeable and expert in peace, justice and reconciliation issues in current local, regional, national or international affairs.
The fund was initiated in 2015 with a gift from former GC student, Corinne (Rohrer) Dixon, and it was established with the knowledge and consent of Atlee and Winifred’s daughters Karen, Judith and Susan. They were honored to have such a lectureship named after their parents, in recognition of the strong support and encouragement they provided for many, many students through the 1950s, 60s and 70s.
The fund will remain open for future contributions. If you wish to make a gift to build up this endowment fund, please make your checks payable to Goshen College and indicate that the gift is for the “Beechy Peace Lectureship Fund” either on the memo line or in a separate note. And thanks in advance for helping honor Atlee and Winifred’s lives, their work and their commitment to peace.