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Editor’s note

It’s not easy to refuse a wolf that wants to lick you in the mouth. After the obligatory sniffing, a thorough face licking is their way of saying, “Welcome, human.” The animals are large and forceful; to deny them would be taken as an offense. The dexterity of their tongues is remarkable; a wolf can somehow lick you in the mouth and up the nose at the same time. I know. I had the rare and wonderful opportunity to interact with wolves and wolf dogs — and submit to several enthusiastic lickings — while reporting for the profile of alumnus Steve Shaffer.

Shaffer is a longtime volunteer at a wolf sanctuary, and his dedication to volunteerism is a trait he shares with many of his fellow alumni. In the University of Denver Magazine, we strive to share as many stories as possible of alumni, students, faculty and staff who are working to improve their communities and their world.

You’ll find several such stories in this issue. DU folks are working toward judicial reform, empowering people through self-expression, training to be community organizers, changing lives through laughter and drafting a road map for immigration reform. Don’t miss “Hope for Healing,” a researcher’s inspirational journey to help those with Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Our readers have noticed the “public good” trend in our coverage. In our summer 2009 survey, we asked several questions about readers’ perceptions of DU. Based on what they read in the magazine, more than 91 percent of respondents said that DU, its students and alumni are making a positive impact on the world. That is the message we’ve been trying to send, and our fabulous, selfless DU community makes it easy by providing an endless supply of inspiring stories.

If you haven’t already, please share yours.

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