Marquette University Alumni Association Alumni National Awards Weekend
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James and Janet Hartman

James and Janet HartmanNeither Jim nor Janet Hartman attended Marquette, but their tie to the university is strong.

The reason is simple: Marquette helped answer a question that had puzzled Jim for decades, through his boyhood, his time at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and as he built up a highly successful career as a partner in the equity investment management company Dalton, Greiner, Hartman, Maher & Co.

When Jim was 5, he lost both parents within a matter of months. A loss like that leaves large holes in a family’s history, and Jim was determined to fill as many as he could.

His father, Ralph, graduated from Marquette Law School in 1931, and in 1991 Jim contacted the university to obtain information about his father. The support was astonishing. The Law School staff produced records, old directories and other material. And, Jim adds, “They didn’t ask for a penny.”

Jim and his wife Janet wanted to thank Marquette. The generous manifestation? The Hartman Literacy and Learning Center in the College of Education. The center houses the Family Literacy Project, which is designed to give inner-city Milwaukee students the chance to improve their reading and math skills while enhancing the quality of literary instruction for student-teachers. Faculty members review lesson plans and supervise tutoring sessions so students receive crucial feedback before entering the teaching world.

The center was a natural for Jim and Janet, who reside in Florida.

“Education is everything,” they say. And this center gives youngsters “a great atmosphere in which to learn.”


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