College of St. Joseph lost a beloved member of its community when Roberta “Kapi” Reith passed away peacefully on February 16, 2019. Kapi served as chair of the Education Division from 2000 to 2009. She is fondly remembered by her many students and former colleagues as a dedicated, student-first educator, a wonderful colleague, and a dear friend.
Kapi received her BA and MEd degrees from Rutgers University and her PhD from Temple University in the Psychology of Reading. Prior to coming to CSJ, she taught in colleges in West Virginia, Vermont, and Kentucky, served in numerous professional organizations. Following her retirement from CSJ, she became a supplemental service provider and tutored children in special education.
Anyone who knew Kapi was well aware of her deep love of animals, and she brought many into her home to provide consistency and care. She also mentored others who adopted dogs and cats, and was the president of Caring Canines: Therapy Dog Club of Southern Vermont and an active member of the online dog group Canine-L, Bearded Collie Club of America, and Beardies of the World, which raises money for rescue operations for bearded collies globally.
Kapi was also a tireless advocate for social justice. She was active in the Unitarian Universalist Church of Rutland where she served on the Board of Directors as vice-president and on the membership committee. She served her wider community by volunteering for Meals on Wheels.
Kapi is survived by her sister, Lyn Barrett Bussian, her brother, William Hunter Reith, Jr., her dogs Gareth and Sophie, and her cat Zed. Kapi will be missed by her family, her beloved pets, and a wide circle of colleagues, friends, and advocates for animals.
A celebration of Kapi’s life is planned for the Spring of 2019.