Bridging that great divide

The Coe-Cornell rivalry has become a tad less heated with the arrival of Michael Geneser, a Coe graduate, as Cornell’s new director of alumni. 

Michael Gesener
Michael Gesener

“I see only benefits arising from my experiences at multiple liberal arts schools, which will serve me well in this role—and I vow to cheer for the Rams,” says Geneser, who once played golf and sang in the concert and show choirs as a Coe business administration student.

Geneser has strong program management experience and nine years in higher education, including five years at the University of Iowa Tippie School of Business MBA program. Previous employers include Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, Chicago’s Field Museum, and the Chicago Bulls. He holds a master’s degree in education from DePaul University.  

This Coe alumnus is far from being the first Cornell leader with a Kohawk connection.

Two Coe graduates serve on the Cornell Board of Trustees—Peter Morris and former (highly successful) Cornell Vice President for Enrollment Peter Bryant. Cornell Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Residence Life Steven Strope is another Kohawk.

Women’s basketball coach Brent Brase ’90 spent 11 seasons coaching at Coe, where he left as the school’s winningest men’s coach. And Richard “Dick” Landis ’64 coached cross country at both Cornell and Coe in 1978 and 1979, once coaching against himself in a meet.

Two Cornell alumni have enhanced the knowledge of Coe students as faculty members—Peter McCormick ’65 in philosophy and Calvin Van Niewaal ’72 in mathematics and computer science. And most astonishingly, MJ Huebner ’88 was a Coe admissions counselor for over 10 years.

And then there’s the legend himself, Barron Bremner, who successfully bridged the great divide between the athletic rivals not once, but twice, during a 42-year career. The coach, athletic director, educator, and vice president went back and forth between the schools with ease, becoming the namesake of the Bremner Cup all-sports traveling trophy.

Welcome, Mr. Geneser.