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A Bit of Baltimore
March 6, 2010  |  by Andrea Appleton
Robert Duncan, A&S ’71
A Bit of Baltimore
Lawyer Robert Duncan has cultivated a Johns Hopkins community far from his alma mater, in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains. Every year the longtime president of the Alumni Association’s Denver chapter leads a corps of volunteers in planning at least three events for that region’s 1,000 (and counting) Johns Hopkins graduates. These events are held almost 1,700 miles from Baltimore, but Duncan has found that certain Charm City traditions remain popular among Colorado expats. Two favorites have been the recent crab feast, featuring a bushel shipped straight from Maryland—Old Bay and all—and a meet-and-greet with the Denver Outlaws, a professional lacrosse team for which several Homewood graduates play.
Besides fostering community among Colorado alumni, Duncan arranges a send-off party each year in the home of a Colorado alum for locals heading to Johns Hopkins. Parents and incoming students get the chance to grill graduates about everything from favorite professors to laundry facilities. “It’s a bit more of a challenge going to a school in the East when you’re from the West,” says Duncan. The send-off, he hopes, eases some fears.
Duncan, who’s been at the chapter’s helm for more than a decade now, says he continues to devote time and energy to the university and its alumni because he enjoys meeting new people. But he also feels a sense of duty. “Hopkins was very good to me,” he says. “And as you get older, you think a little more about the concept of giving back.”                           —Andrea Appletona

Robert Duncan, A&S ’71

Lawyer Robert Duncan has cultivated a Johns Hopkins community far from his alma mater, in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains. Every year the longtime president of the Alumni Association’s Denver chapter leads a corps of volunteers in planning at least three events for that region’s 1,000 (and counting) Johns Hopkins graduates. These events are held almost 1,700 miles from Baltimore, but Duncan has found that certain Charm City traditions remain popular among Colorado expats. Two favorites have been the recent crab feast, featuring a bushel shipped straight from Maryland—Old Bay and all—and a meet-and-greet with the Denver Outlaws, a professional lacrosse team for which several Homewood graduates play.

Besides fostering community among Colorado alumni, Duncan arranges a send-off party each year in the home of a Colorado alum for locals heading to Johns Hopkins. Parents and incoming students get the chance to grill graduates about everything from favorite professors to laundry facilities. “It’s a bit more of a challenge going to a school in the East when you’re from the West,” says Duncan. The send-off, he hopes, eases some fears.

Duncan, who’s been at the chapter’s helm for more than a decade now, says he continues to devote time and energy to the university and its alumni because he enjoys meeting new people. But he also feels a sense of duty. “Hopkins was very good to me,” he says. “And as you get older, you think a little more about the concept of giving back.”

Photo: Will Kirk/Homewoodphoto.jhu.edu


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