Donor Appreciation

The Department of English deeply appreciates the valuable support we receive from our amazing alumni and friends! We are tremendously grateful for gifts of any size.


Philip K. Piele (BA ’57)

Insight on Giving

Alumnus Philip K. Piele (’57 BA English) and his wife, Sandra, generously support the ESQ Editorial Assistantship Fund and experiential learning opportunities that expand and enrich students’ preparation for their future careers in academia, publishing, and a wide array of other fields.

A former professor, department head, and director of the ERIC Clearinghouse on Educational Policy and Management at the University of Oregon, Phillip is currently president of the board of directors of Ballet Fantastique, an innovative theatrical ballet company co-founded more than 20 years ago by a mother and daughter.

His service activities span four decades and include membership and leadership on the boards of the Mozart Players, Oregon Bach Festival, Eugene Opera (including three years as executive director), and the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art at UO (two years as board president).

Why I support the Department of English at WSU

“My principal reason for making a donation to support the ESQ editorial assistantship is in memory of Stuart C. Smith, my long-time friend, colleague, and an editor extraordinaire, with whom I worked for 38 years at a federally funded clearinghouse for the acquisition, indexing, abstracting, and facsimile dissemination of documents on educational policy and management at the University of Oregon. Stuart was primarily responsible for the editing of some 30 books and monographs published by the clearinghouse as well as numerous occasional papers, bibliographies, newsletters, and several thousand abstracts. He accomplished all this and much more while courageously battling a neuromuscular disorder which progressively so weakened his body that he was unable to walk or to use his hands. For several years he edited using voice recognition software. Stuart passed away four years ago. He was (and is) an inspiration to me and to all who knew him.

Sandra and I are very pleased that the inaugural ESQ editorial assistantship was awarded to Sezin Zorlu, a Fulbright PhD student from Turkey, and to know that our gift will have a positive, lasting impact for WSU students and the study of 19th-century American literature.”

Impact for Students

We’re delighted with the Pieles’ decision to support an editorial associate working with ESQ, the English department’s journal devoted to the study of 19th-century American literature. Our graduate students benefit greatly from this type of editorial experience, which in turn enhances their teaching, research, and service activities and makes them more marketable when they complete their degrees,” said Donna Potts, English department chair.