UA Journey

Ann Tremarello: UAF Registrar to Retire After Nearly Five Decades on the Hill

Ann Tremarello is pictured at the UAF Admissions and Records desk in 1982. Photo: UA Office of Public Affairs

The University of Alaska Fairbanks issued this news release on Dec. 20, 2001, before longtime UAF Registrar Ann Tremarello retired.

Fairbanks, Alaska – The University of Alaska Fairbanks will lose one of its most valuable institutional resources when Registrar Ann Tremarello retires next June after a nearly 50-year association with the university.

"One can’t even begin to measure the incredible influence Ann has had," said UAF Chancellor Marshall Lind. "She’s constantly working in the background to make things better for our students."

Tremarello has seen the campus grow from less than 400 to nearly 9,000 students since she arrived on campus in 1953. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in business administration in 1957 majoring in both accounting and management. Four years earlier, as a high school senior in Virginia, Tremarello had hardly thought of Alaska.

She had her sights set on college in Richmond, but her plans would change when her Air Force father received a commission at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage. Her father thought she should be close to the family during her first year of college, and in 1953, the Fairbanks campus was the only institution of higher education in the territory.

The queen and king of the 1956 Christmas dance were Ann Maxwell and Joe Tremarello. Photo: Rasmuson Library, University Relations Collection

"I wasn’t a pleasant young lady as we drove cross-country to Seattle and then got on a boat to come to Alaska," Tremarello recalled. "But as soon as I got on the train to Fairbanks, I was surrounded by other new-to-Alaska students just like me." At the end of my freshman year, I told my dad I’d stick around for another year or two, which was good because I met my husband the next year. It worked out well."

Tremarello was an involved student during her college years. She was present for the groundbreaking of Wickersham Hall and says at that time, students thought the two-room suites with a shared bathroom were a big step in the right direction. She laughs when she says she was "just out of the picture" taken during the student ceremony to "bury tradition," a protest staged by students objecting to then University President Ernest Patty’s announcement that he wanted to prohibit alcohol on campus.

"Everyone wore black and acted like it was a funeral," said Tremarello. "The tradition stone that pops up every once in a while is like a headstone."

It says, "Here Lies Tradition – 1957," and even now student groups who possess it have campus bragging rights – for as long as they can keep it. To this day its whereabouts remain unknown.

She began her university career as the receptionist in admissions in August of 1957, after working for an accounting firm in Fairbanks for two months. The registrar back then speculated that Ann would only stick around for a year until her husband, Joe, graduated.

Ann Tremarello watches the 1956 groundbreaking ceremonies during the construction of Wickersham Hall. Photo: Rasmuson Library, University Relations Collection

"Little did we know," said Tremarello. "But working with students and faculty is very rewarding and I’m fortunate to have a job I really enjoy."

Tremarello has seen the university admissions and records office go from paper records and punched cards to computers and Internet-based database management during her tenure. She became UAF’s chief student records manager in 1974 and assumed the position of registrar in 1996 after a restructuring of the Office of Admissions and Records into the Office of Admissions and the Office of the Registrar. Before that Tremarello was director and associate director of Admissions and Records. Today, she adds Web registration to the list of student records services she oversees. Tremarello helped manage all but one commencement since 1958; she admits she missed one year because she had the mumps.

In recent years, Tremarello has been instrumental in making sure things go smoothly – especially where students are concerned.

"Ann is a registrar who thinks of the impact on students as she works with the faculty and staff on changes in procedures," said Provost Paul Reichardt. "She has a knack for knowing what will fly and what won’t and when she needs to, she’ll go figure out how to make it work."

Tremarello is ready to roll up her shirtsleeves once again this May for the university’s 80th commencement ceremony. Tremarello says she still has a few details to work out at the Carlson Center, where commencement took place last year for the first time. She considered staying for her 45th year, but said she would like to spend more time with her grandchildren. Tremarello will retire on June 30, 2002.


Links:

AP Story - Longtime UAF Registrar decides to retire Dec. 26, 2001

Tremarellos Honored with "Nanook Award" November 25, 1998 UAF News Release

Resolution Conferring Upon Mrs. Ann M. Tremarello the title of University Registrar, Emerita

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