Anecdotes from the community

23 June 2008

Mugsy Spiegel remembers Martin for "Expressively and verbally 'taking a dim view' on anything on which he took a dim view."

Former Vice-Chancellor Dr Stuart Saunders says: "Martin West has been an outstanding deputy vicechancellor. I found him to be hard working, committed to UCT and a man of integrity."

Dr Mamphela Ramphele writes: "Martin West is the embodiment of the best in traditional academia as a teacher, a mentor and a supervisor. There is nothing his wonderful sense of humour cannot diffuse."

Professor Cheryl de la Rey, former Deputy Vice- Chancellor, recalls: "I discovered that Martin, or MEW, as we in the OVC sometimes referred to him, to distinguish from the other Martin, had a store of institutional knowledge, which he related via short stories or anecdotes. He would bring these to life in typical anthropological style – colourful characters, clashes of personalities and usually an amusing climax."

Jenny Boyes, Martin's PA of 17 years, says: "This feels like a kind of divorce – but without half the pension! This is most certainly the end of an era. Working for the same professor for 17 years must surely say a lot about the boss. I feel very privileged to have worked with him and learnt so much about humanity and life generally."

Frank Molteno (health sciences faculty) writes: "Martin has quite literally given his life to UCT. I have known him as a true servant of the best interests of our fine institution, serving both fellow staff and students whichever side of the table he has found himself sitting at different points in his career."

Edwina Goliath, Director Student Development writes: "He shaped my thinking and approach to work in Student Affairs in many ways. One example is his concept of the 'honest broker role' of Student Affairs in how it promotes dialogue between student leadership and the university executive."

Jerome September, SRC President 1998/9; SRC Media and Publications Officer 1997/8 says: "I remember him as a DVC who encouraged critical debate, and open discussion. He took criticism of himself and of the administration in his stride, often admitting to his own shortcomings, thus often winning over political opponents. No matter was too trivial for his attention."

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Please view the republishing articles page for more information.