Board Member Q&A: Bernard Madison

Bernard Madison

Q&A with BTV Board Member Bernard Madison

Q: Where did you grow up and how long have you and your family been in Northwest Arkansas?
A: I grew up in Kentucky, near Mammoth Cave. I spent 13 years in Louisiana, at LSU, and came to Fayetteville in 1979 with my family, wife (Sue) and children (Eva and Blair). 

Q: Tell us about your profession.
A: I am a mathematician by education but spent many years in university administration and public educational policy. I was chair of my department, Mathematical Sciences, for 10 years (1979-89), dean of the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences for 10 years (1989-99), and prominent nationally in education for quantitative literacy since.

Q: What is your academic background?
A: I have a BS degree in mathematics and physics from Western Kentucky University and an MS and PhD in mathematics from the University of Kentucky.

Q: Tell us about your family.
A: My wife, Sue, has spent 25 years in elected positions, 16 in the Arkansas General Assembly and near 10 years as a Justice of the Peace in Washington County. Our daughter, Eva, is a partner in the Littler Mendelson national employment law firm. Her husband, Dave, is an intellectual property attorney in Fayetteville (Keisling and Pieper). Their son, Sam, is in the 4th grade at Vandergriff school. Our son, Blair, is a research scientist (colon cancer) at Washington University in St. Louis, and will soon leave to join a private company in San Diego. His wife, Caitlin, is an advanced practice nurse. They have two daughters, Isla and Sabine. I have four sisters, two in Kentucky and two in South Carolina, and one brother, in Kentucky. 

Q: When were you elected to the Board, and how did you come to serve?
A: I am in my first year on the Board and agreed to serve after being asked by members of my church, First United Presbyterian Church.

Q: Why is Butterfield important to you?
A: Soon after our move to Fayetteville I heard about Butterfield because I knew the promoters and have followed its development since its establishment. Consequently, many of the residents are friends and associates. 

Q: What special positions do you hold on the Board and do you serve on any committees?
A: I am a member of the Strategic Development Committee and through that I am learning quite a lot about Butterfield and its future. 

Q: Are there any specific areas of focus for you as a Board member?
A: I want to keep Butterfield fiscally sound and a pleasant and supportive community for its residents.

Q: What sets Butterfield apart, in your opinion?
A: Butterfield has deep roots in Northwest Arkansas, is a well-operated, fiscally sound, benevolent non-profit progressive community that provides physical, mental and spiritual care.

Q: What would you like potential residents to know about Butterfield?
A: Butterfield can provide a secure and caring community of progressive-minded, socially-active retirees who band together in a mutually supporting interactive and active society.

Q: As a Board member, what message do you have for current Village residents?
A: It is natural for residents to be concerned about how their resources are being managed for their well-being. It is my firm belief that this concern is minimized because of the way Butterfield is operated and governed.   

Q: Besides BTV, do you serve on any other boards or committees?
A: As the founding president of the National Numeracy Network I continue to be involved in its development and work. I serve as a senior editor of its journal, Numeracy, and attend its activities as I can.

Q: Do you have any favorite hobbies or pastimes? Most of my time before retirement was devoted to work, so I have neglected hobbies.
A: Recently I have attempted to learn the guitar and, more recently, photography. I am especially bad at both, so far.