Reflection of My Time With Father Kammerer

Emilia with Fr. Kammerer and her brother Ben in 2013 at Chatfield’s graduation.

Fall 2012. It was my second year at Chatfield College, and I had American Government with Fr. Kammerer. I’d heard a lot about him of course, as he was a fixture at the college. It was an election year, and I was the only kid in a class full of College Credit Plus, or CCP, (Post-Secondary Enrollment Options then) students who was eligible to vote for president. That did not stop Fr. Kammerer from impressing upon all us the vital importance of voting in local and national elections, and making your voice heard in the political process. His enthusiasm and joy in bringing history and concepts to life in the classroom made more effective to us his often weighty and intricate teachings of government and the Constitution. His jokes helped too, but no one was more tickled by them than he was.

He had many real-life examples of the decisions made by “the somebodies” and how they affected our day-to-day lives. He brought in speakers who were in ‘the trenches’ of the political process and the interpretation of the Constitution, including a member of Romney’s campaign staff and our own college president, John Tafaro. He knew everybody and happily showed off his extensive collection of artifacts to the class.

He had so much pride in his connections and his collections.  He was full of pride the day he took the class over to the recently-renamed Fr. Kammerer Library and Learning Center. The dedication would be that evening, but because we were ‘somebodies’ to him, he’d give us a sneak peek.

Giggling with anticipation he led us to the sign out front.

‘Well” he said, “that’s wrong!”

“What’s wrong?” We asked. Mentally I was trying to recall how he spelled his last name thinking that was what had caught his eye.

He gestured to the sign. “It’s supposed to say Fr. Raymond Kammerer Memorial Library!”

We took to giggling ourselves and gently reminded him that he was still alive.

“Well,” he said shaking a finger at us. “I’m entrusting you all to make sure they change it when I am no longer of this mortal plane!”

The last time I saw him was last year in his home in Waynesville. He was as proud of his collection and his work as ever, having retired from teaching in 2016. He might have left the classroom but the classroom never left him. It was like being back in American Government, listening to the same enthusiastic stories, and getting a refresher on all the imparted wisdom from nearly a decade ago.  He was delighted a former student of his would be watching over his library. He was kind enough to pretend he remembered me, but he’d had my mother and my grandmother before me in class, so I can’t fault him for forgetting a face.

“You’ve read my book?” He asked in a way that wasn’t really a question. He didn’t wait for an answer but grabbed one of his own copies of his autobiography. He flipped until he found what he was looking for and pointed. “There is my favorite part. If you get nothing else out of this little book, remember that.”

The section about the library read: “It is my hope and desire that students of the future will view the art items, replicas, daggers and all else I used in class and gain some information from this collection. Perhaps some future history professor will make use of them. I hope too that they will take from the shelves my books that I so loved, and gain some light of knowledge and enrichment in their lives. And just perhaps, this or that rare professor or student will stop for a moment and wonder about the man who acquired, owned and used them.”

Father, nearly every day I walk into the Chatfield library, your library. It is quiet and still in the morning, but bustling with student’s laughter and camaraderie by noon. They study and they goof off at the tables in the ‘new’ section of the library and like all good students, they ask questions.

They ask for help finding books.

They ask about the artifacts already housed in a glass-doored shelf in the addition.

They ask who the guy in the portrait over the circulation desk is. Others will say that should be obvious, that’s Fr. Kammerer, didn’t you read the sign?

They wonder and they learn new things every day, and they keep me on my toes like we did you (and you did us).

I promise you Father, that they will keep wondering about you, and that the students you taught won’t forget your lessons.

And I promise to change the sign.

Remembering Father Raymond Kammerer

Father Raymond Kammerer, 81, died at his home in Waynesville, OH on January 4, 2020. Father earned graduate degrees from both the Athenaeum of Ohio (Mount Saint Mary’s Seminary of the West) and Xavier University in Cincinnati. He was ordained a priest in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati by Archbishop Karl J. Alter in May 1964. Appointed Associate Pastor of Saint Peter Parish in Huber Heights (1964-1971) and to the faculty of John Carroll High School in Dayton, he began a long teaching career along with his pastoral ministry. In 1971, Archbishop Paul Liebold appointed him to the Campus Ministry at the College of Mount Saint Joseph, now Mount St. Joseph University, in Delhi Hills (Cincinnati) and at the same time as an instructor at the College. In 1977, Father Kammerer became an adjunct professor at the College Seminary of Saint Pius X in Erlanger, Ky. In May of 1978, Joseph Cardinal Bernardin (then Archbishop of Cincinnati) appointed Father Kammerer to his first pastorate, the Church of Saint Theresa of the Infant Jesus in Covington, Ohio. He continued to teach at the Erlanger College Seminary until 1982 when he joined the faculty of Chatfield College in Brown County, Ohio, where he continued for the next 35 years. In July 1988, Father Kammerer was appointed Pastor of the Church of the Resurrection in Cincinnati, and in July 1995, Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk appointed him to the pastorate of Saint Augustine Parish in historic Waynesville, Ohio. In 1994, the Greater Cincinnati Consortium of Colleges and Universities, upon nomination by Chatfield College, awarded Father Kammerer the honor of “Distinguished Professor of the Year”. In March 2003, Chatfield College, in recognition of his long teaching career, promoted Father Kammerer to the rank of full Professor. During his long tenure at Chatfield, Father served as Chair of the History Department and then of Religious Studies. Both as a Pastor and as a college teacher, Father Kammerer was well known by students and parishioners alike for his literary works. His publications, “Old Mission San Juan Capistrano” and “A Portrait of Mission Life,” created for the tourist trade at California’ s Old Mission San Juan Capistrano, continue to be best sellers at the California Missions, and are found in many libraries throughout California as standard references. By his parishioners and college students both, Father Kammerer will be remembered as a tireless educator and promoter of Catholic education. A bibliophile, Father Kammerer collected a huge library over the years, a great many titles in history and art he used constantly in the classroom. The entire collection, along with the many historic artifacts he acquired in his long teaching career, will now be housed in Chatfield College’s library, renamed the Father Raymond Kammerer Library and Learning Center in 2012.

A visitation will be held 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM Thursday, January 9 at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Waynesville. A second visitation will be held 9:00 AM – 10:30 AM Friday, January 10 at Stubbs-Conner Funeral Home in Waynesville, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial service at 11 AM Friday at St. Augustine Catholic Church. Following a luncheon at the church, a committal and graveside service will be held 2:30 PM Friday at Saint John the Baptist Cemetery in Cincinnati. Stubbs-Conner Funeral Home in Waynesville is serving the family.

Memorials for Father Kammerer may be sent to Chatfield College to be added to the Father Raymond Kammerer Library Fund. Give a gift online here or mail a check to 20918 State Route 251, Fayetteville, OH 45118.

Why You Should Start Your Degree in 2020

Maybe you’ve been considering going back to school to start or finish your degree, but it never seems like the right time. Between family commitments and work responsibilities, finding the time to make college work can seem like an impossible challenge. Maybe you are anxious about going back after being out of school for so long, or you’re worried that you will not be able to keep up. Even if your schedule is hectic and you have doubts, NOW is a great time to get started! In this new year, make it a point to focus on you! If your goal is making a positive change in your life, there is no better way to achieve that than earning a college degree!

Now that you have decided you are going to take the plunge, finding the college that is the best fit for you and your family is key. While there are many choices out there, read below to see why Chatfield is an excellent option for anyone.

Affordability- With more than 35 endowed scholarships, students have access to free money! Along with our scholarships, students can also take advantage of the work-study program on campus, grants, and loans. Our financial aid counselors are there to help students navigate the process of getting the most money to apply toward their degrees. Take a moment to view the types of aid available to you at Chatfield.

Accessibility- Chatfield is an open enrollment college, meaning there is no requirement for ACT or SAT scores. Even better, you can complete the FREE application online in minutes! The admission counselors and advisors will help students with the enrollment process and answer any questions. Click here to request more information about starting the process.

Another significant aspect of Chatfield is the flexibility when it comes to taking classes. The classes at Chatfield are offered on a block schedule, meaning each class is scheduled once per week. If taking classes on campus does not work with your schedule, you have the option to register for courses that meet online!

Support- Chatfield’s dedicated faculty and staff’s top priority is to help you succeed! Your academic advisors are there to help you keep on track and assist in solving any academic issues you may face. On both Chatfield campuses, free mentoring and tutoring services are available. Our small, close-knit community on campus ensures everyone has access to the support they need!

Although the thought of attending college can be scary and overwhelming for anyone, you can do it! We will be there every step of the way until you walk across the stage on graduation day!


Make a Lasting Impact Through a Planned Gift

“I chose to join the Miriam Society because I believe in Chatfield’s mission. Chatfield is a truly special place. One that prepares students for a better future, and embodies the spirit of hardworking women and men, who wish to make a difference in the lives of others. I decided to make a planned gift  because I see how empowering Chatfield is for its students, allowing them to achieve their dreams and accomplish their goals through education.”

-Natasha Richiron, Chatfield staff


About the Miriam Society. The Miriam Society was formed in honor of Chatfield’s founder and first Dean, Sr. Miriam Thompson, to recognize individuals who have chosen to leave a planned gift for Chatfield College. The Miriam Society’s members are women and men committed to the mission of Chatfield College to transform lives and families through education.  That transformation can only be achieved through private financial support and the building of the endowment fund.

A planned gift, left to Chatfield through your will, retirement plan, life insurance policy or other means, can provide the difference.

It’s easy. Ensuring that you make a difference can be as simple as adding a sentence to your existing will or adding Chatfield College on a beneficiary form.

WillRetirement PlanLife Insurance Policy
Through a bequest in your will, you can make a truly meaningful difference in the future of our students without affecting your current finances.Retirement plan assets can be taxed twice upon your death, estate taxes and income taxes. You can give part of your retirement assets to Chatfield at your death, and the gift is tax-free. This way, what may have been lost to your family in taxes becomes a gift to our students. Sometimes life insurance outlives its original purpose, such as educating children or providing support for a spouse. BY adding Chatfield as a policy beneficiary, what started as a modest investment for your family's peace of mind can also bring a great benefit to a future generation of students.


Every gift will make a profound impact. Whether your gift is $1 or $1,000,000, we can empower more students through education to better themselves, their employability and their future.


You can help you and your family now and others later.  You can increase lifetime cash flow for you, your spouse or other loved ones through a charitable remainder trust.  After your death (or your spouse’s death), whatever remains in the trust goes to Chatfield.


You have the flexibility to decide what is best. Your gift can come to us only after your other needs are met.  It can also be a percentage so it remains in proportion to other desires you wish to fulfill.  You can change your gift at any time if your circumstances change.


You can choose how you want to make your impact. Your gift can be unrestricted, placed in our endowment, or you can designate that it pay for specific needs at Chatfield… whatever means most to you.


Getting Started Is Easy

To learn more about planned giving at Chatfield please contact Development Director Kelly Watson at (513) 875-3344 ext. 117, or email Kelly at

The information above is not intended as legal or financial advice. Please consult your attorney and/or advisor.

Faculty Spotlight- Marvin Smith

Marvin Smith has taught businesses classes at Chatfield College’s Over-the-Rhine campus since the spring of 2017.  But Marvin is perhaps better-known as a successful and highly respected entrepreneur, having had a stellar career in real estate and real estate development, with a focus on the OTR neighborhood, where he lives and still operates his popular “Ollie’s Trolley” restaurant and catering company. In fact, it was his connection to OTR that led Marvin to Chatfield in the first place—two of Chatfield’s board members thought he would be a good fit and suggested he teach a class. Once Marvin was introduced to Chatfield and its students, he was hooked. In addition to teaching, Marvin mentors, tutors, and volunteers his time to support the students at Chatfield’s Over-the-Rhine (OTR) campus in any way he can. His love and devotion to Chatfield students extends to his personal ambition of making sure everyone is well-fed, and he often donates delicious food for Chatfield events and student activities.

“Being the ‘chef’ that I am, I love Chatfield College and all of its ‘menu ingredients’,” Smith shared.

Dean Peter Hanson explained, “Marvin is always there for Chatfield and our students – both inside and outside the classroom. He is successful and accomplished. His motivation is purely to give back some of his success to those who can most benefit. We are blessed to have him as a part of our family.”

The students echo the words of Dean Hanson. Terry Weathersby, a student of Marvin’s from the OTR campus, says she is thankful for the support and encouragement Marvin has given not only her, but her  classmates as well. Terry is also a member of OTR’s student leadership group, and Marvin has sponsored lunches and refreshments for many of their events.

“He has helped many by showing them the road to their dreams and goals may be bumpy, but those goals are achievable. His support helps to provide a roadmap on how to get there,” said Terry.

Smith is a graduate of Wittenberg University, and holds a Master of Business Administration from Xavier University. His teaching experience began during his time in the Air Force, during the Viet Nam era, when he taught aircraft welding to students in Laos, who were beginning to fly and maintain US-built aircraft.

In October 2019, Marvin was awarded Chatfield College’s Dean Agatha Fitzgerald OSU Excellence in Teaching Award and honored at the Greater Cincinnati Collegiate Connection’s (GC3) annual ceremony honoring outstanding teaching, held at Northern Kentucky University. Smith teaches business classes, as well as Cornerstone and Capstone. One of his fellow faculty members, in her nomination of Marvin, said “Marvin invests his whole professional, and even his personal self, into the instruction and, more importantly, development of his students. He is a warm, friendly face to new and returning students. He is a mentor, a leader, and father figure to some.”

“I’m currently in my third year and have enjoyed, actually, loved every minute.  It’s wonderful to use my years of experiences in the business world to encourage my students to continue their education while building a future for themselves, family and society,” said Smith.


Spooky Reads This Halloween

By: Cheyenne Brown, Chatfield student

Now that fall is finally here, Halloween is not far behind! Now would be a great time to visit the library to pick up a spooky book. The Chatfield Library has many books to choose from when it comes to horror, mystery, and thriller. However, if you can’t find one in the library that peaks your interest, the SEO consortium and the Ohio Digital Library have thousands of books to choose from. You can use your student ID and the library website to order books, or just stop by the library circulation desk for assistance.

Here are a few books I have read and that have been recommended to me:

The Long Walk by Stephen King writing as Richard Bauchman

It should come as no surprise that Stephen King’s name is on this list but when it comes to books that will have you hooked from the very beginning, this one is it. This book tells the story of a teenager, Ray Garraty, who wants to participate in the annual test of stamina along with 99 other teenage boys. There are some harsh rules that these boys must follow if they want to be named the winner of “The Long Walk”. If you enjoy reading about dystopian societies and are interested in throwing some thriller aspects into it, this book might just be the one for you.



Full Dark No Stars by Stephen King

Full Dark No Stars is another one of Stephen King’s books that has stuck with me. This book is a collection of four novellas, each one a bit more disturbing than the last. The first is “1922”, which is now a movie on Netflix. “1922” is about a man who lives on a farm with his wife and son, when things take a turn for the worst. A voice begins speaking to the man that he must do whatever is necessary to save his farm, and he does. The next story is “Big Driver”, within this title comes a brutal assault on a writer. This assault transforms the writer and forces her to confront the stranger that now stares back in her reflection. Next, the story of “Fair Extension”, tells the tale of a man who is suffering from a fatal illness and makes a deal with the devil to allow him to have more time on Earth. As we’ve seen in many other stories when it comes to making a deal with the devil, it rarely works out in their favor. The last story is “A Good Marriage”. The story starts with an innocent search for batteries in the garage, but one discovery will turn this marriage upside down.


Zombie by Joyce Carol Oates

Zombie takes you on a stroll through the mind of a serial killer. The story is relatively short but will leave you on edge with every twist and turn, v wondering what the main character “Quentin P.” will do next. Not only telling you about the madness this character is thinking, it also provides you with logical reasoning for why he does it, that’s what makes this story terrifying. This book is also one that is available in the Chatfield College Library.




The Moore House by Tony Tremblay

This is a book that has been recommended to me. It tells the story of three excommunicated nuns that are trying to redeem themselves in the eyes of God by joining a paranormal unit that was warranted by the Catholic Church. Things take a turn for the worst when the nuns come to realize that they are only part of a bigger plan and see their project taking an evil turn. The Horror Fiction Review writes, “I’m a big fan of religious-themed horror, and I enjoyed Tremblay’s approach. With plenty of haunted house mayhem, an interesting cast, and a flawed but likable crew of demon hunters, THE MOORE HOUSE is a fine debut and a quick read to get the chills going.”

Here are a few lists of other books to read to get you in the mood for Halloween season:

13 Creepy Books to Read This October

45 seriously spooky (but not quite scary) books

The Fall Frolic at St. Martin

The Fall Frolic this past Saturday at the St. Martin campus was well attended by many volunteers. Volunteers helping to complete many items on the to-do list included trustees Denny Kiley, Tory Parlin, and Bill Montague with his family. RiverHills Bank came with a team of six, and Chatfield volunteers included Shelia Yates-Mattingly, Pete and Lynn Hanson, Kelly Watson, David Powell, Trevin Simmons and Robert Elmore.

The day started with donuts and coffee provided by Dunkin Donuts in Owensville and ended with lunch provided by RiverHills Bank.  Kibler Lumber provided many of the materials and supplies needed for the work.

The weather was perfect again this year and the participants had a great time frolicking!

Also happening on campus that day, the Brown County Ursuline Alumni Association annual meeting was attended by more than 75 graduates and some of the Ursuline of Brown County Sisters.

View more photos

Chatfield College President Tafaro Announces Retirement

President Tafaro with OTR students at the Reds Opening Day Parade

John P. Tafaro, president of Chatfield College, has announced his retirement after more than ten years in the position.  “It has been a great honor and privilege to serve as Chatfield’s fifth president” he explained. “We have a wonderful board, faculty and staff, and it has been an honor to work with so many great people. But my biggest blessing has been to witness education transforming lives for the better. Chatfield College is all about its students, and I have been inspired watching so many students overcome significant barriers to build a better future for themselves and their families.”

The Board will conduct a nation-wide search for Tafaro’s successor, and he will stay on to assist during the transition. Tory Parlin, Vice-Chair of the Chatfield

President Tafaro poses with Sr. Phyllis Kemper and Tafaro Scholar Trent Moore.

Board, who will chair the search

committee, said: “Chatfield is a unique institution, serving a population of students that may have no other option in higher education.  We are confident we will find a replacement for President Tafaro who will continue his work and the Ursuline legacy of service and support that has been Chatfield’s trademark since 1971.” Barry Elkus, of Gilman Partners, has been retained to identify candidates and manage the search.

William Montague, Chatfield’s Board Chair added, “John Tafaro’s tenure at Chatfield has been long and successful. For more than a decade, he has been instrumental in growing our annual fundraising, endowment, and enrollment, resulting in more scholarships and expanded facilities and resources for students at both campuses, including the creation of Chatfield’s state-of-the-art campus in Over-the-Rhine.”

President Tafaro with Bradlee King during his internship with BASF.

Tafaro, 64, is the second-longest serving college president among the 18 regionally accredited colleges and universities in Greater Cincinnati.  A former adjunct instructor at Xavier University, Ohio University, and Tiffin University, as well as an attorney and CEO of several area companies, he plans to do consulting work in higher education and for philanthropic organizations and foundations.

Chatfield College is a private, Catholic, liberal arts college offering the Associate of Arts degree in Brown County, Ohio and Cincinnati, and is an open-enrollment college. The Brown County campus is located at 20918 State Route 251; St. Martin, OH 45118; the Cincinnati campus is located in historic Over-the- Rhine at 1544 Central Parkway; Cincinnati, OH 45202. For more information, visit the website, at, call (513) 875-3344 or e-mail



Student Profile Terry Weathersby

Terry Weathersby, a student at the Over-the-Rhine (OTR) campus, is spending her summer interning with BASF, the world’s largest Chemical Company. BASF is headquartered in Germany, but maintains extensive US operations, including in Wyandot, Michigan, where Terry works.  BASF has been a great partner of Chatfield College over the years, providing funding for the state-of-the-art, BASF science lab at the OTR campus, as well supporting multiple annual scholarships for the past five years.  Terry is the second Chatfield student to receive an internship from BASF.

Terry heard about the internship from her advisor, and after applying, was chosen for the position over many applicants. She has many responsibilities with the company, including working in the Supply Chain, Environmental Health Safety (EHS), and Administrating Management departments. Knowing this internship experience would be great for her resume and future career choice, she also wanted to take advantage of a great new start in the work force, the communication & people skills it would provide, and many good networking opportunities.

Thus far, Terry’s internship has provided her with many useful skills and experiences. In her role in the Supply Chain, Terry imports, separates, dates, and places documents into the correct banker boxes and sends them to Ice Mountain, a vendor that work closely with BASF. With EHS, she makes safety posters for the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and is revising the safety grid.  The Administrative Management (AM) aspect of the job calls for her to oversee the documentation and standard operating procedures (SOP) and import them into BASF’s weekly checklist system.

“One of the most challenging parts of the internship is learning all the acronyms the BASF employees speak in daily. Although my days can be very high, I really like my supervisors and fellow employees. Everyone has been understanding and will go out of their ways to help me get the hang of everything,” said Terry.

Terry has had big dreams for her future for years and coming to Chatfield has helped her achieve some of those dreams. Outside of the classroom, Terry is a member of the Student Service Club, which serves the student body as well as the community. Despite her need to overcome physical and emotional obstacles, Terry has not let anything stop her from being an exceptional student. She has been living with Dystonia since she was 13 years old, a disease that affects the cerebellum and the nervous system in the body, causing issues with speech, balance, and gait. The disease has made life difficult for Terry, and many people did not believe she could accomplish in life what she has thus far. And it hasn’t stopped her yet! Earning a college degree will make her dream of getting off welfare a reality, and a dream no longer.

After graduating from Chatfield College, Terry plans to attend mortuary school to train to become a diener.  A diener is a morgue worker responsible for performing after-death procedures on decedents’ remains. Although this career choice may seem unusual to many, Terry finds the science behind it interesting and has planned this to be her future occupation since she was a little girl.

“My future is bright. I’ve had a lot of family support from my four sons, my mother, and my brothers and sisters. I thank them for their love and support by working hard and becoming successful. Coming to college has been a challenge but I like a challenge. I never back down because I know deserve the best,” she said.

Faculty Profile – Kathy Broomall

Kathy Broomall is the Chair of Physical, Life, and Social Sciences at Chatfield College, where she is responsible for all science courses and programs at both the St. Martin and Over-the-Rhine campuses.

Kathy earned her bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from Northern Kentucky University and then earned her PhD in Anatomy and Cell Biology from the University of Cincinnati’s College of Medicine. While teaching at another school, Kathy had students in her class who had previously attended Chatfield. She observed that they were some of the best students in her class, so she became interested in Chatfield. Growing up in a Catholic school setting, she was familiar with Catholic traditions and became eager to learn more about Chatfield and its mission. Since joining the faculty, Kathy has found Chatfield to be a warm and inviting place and she has enjoyed every minute of working with fellow faculty and staff. She finds Chatfield students very receptive and willing to learn, and that makes her teaching very enjoyable.

Kathy explains, “I was educated by the Catholic school system, and I credit this for my academic success! I started my college teaching career more than 10 years ago, at Miami University, where I was mentored by senior professors in best teaching practices at the college level. I love helping students find their academic strength, and I love helping students discover what they are passionate about!”

Kathy enjoys time teaching and educating students on anatomy, biology, chemistry, and other allied health subjects. In addition to her time working directly with students, she loves talking about school and science outside of the classroom and is always looking for opportunities to discuss academia and what new and exciting things are happening at school. She has spent many years teaching science at other colleges including Miami University, UC Clermont, Xavier University, and Sinclair Community College.

During her time at Chatfield, Kathy has become not just an educator to her students, but a friend as well. She holds a special bond with 2018 graduate Sr. Marcelina Watua, from Tanzania. “I adored having Sr. Marcelina in my A & P courses as well as her independent study for the NCLEX Nursing exam that she was studying for last summer. If Sr. Marcelina needs help, I am there for her! She is actually more of a true ‘sister’ to me. I miss her tremendously,” Kathy said. Sr. Marcelina hopes to return to her home village in Tanzania as a nurse who can offer better health care to rural mothers and babies who have poor access to healthcare and clinics.

When asked about Chatfield, the word she used to best describe the overall environment and experience was ‘awesome’. Kathy really enjoys talking about Chatfield to others and learning more about other experiences from faculty and staff. She truly enjoys working with students in order to help them find what they are passionate about, and is excited to see how she can lead more students toward success.

When not cheerleading for Chatfield, Kathy enjoys time with her husband, Avi Milgram, and with her rescue animals including her two dogs, four cats, and two horses.