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FALL 2012

TODAY AT BRECK

BUILDING THE FUTURE

Breck Looks Forward PG.22 MEALS THAT HEAL Connecting the Community COMING HOME Alumni, Faculty and Staff SPRING SPORTS REPORT


here and now. Breck School 2012 /13 Annual Fund

When we say you are here, we mean it. Your Annual Fund participation brings you here—to Breck—every day. And while you may not be here to see it every day, your gift makes everything possible. From the diverse and enriching array of academics, arts and sports, to professional development activities for faculty, to the work of the committed individuals who take care of the buildings and grounds, your support helps you be here now. Make your gift today, and you’ll make a difference here and now.

breckschool.org/support/give


contents

FALL 2012 TODAY AT BRECK 1

FEATURES 18 | B  reck Meals that Heal A new Parents Association program helps community members care for each other by delivering food to those in need.

22 | Watch this Space cover story As the Upper School transformation takes shape, students, teachers

and staff find ways to focus on the fundamentals—and have a little fun at the same time. From learning in the Fieldhouse to running mustangs in the chain-link fence, read about the project and this ordinary, extraordinary year.

30 | A  lumni Enrich Faculty and Staff

22

We caught up with nine alumni who have returned to Breck as members of the faculty and staff. See what they have to say about life at Breck now and then.

36 | T  ib Tusler ’50 Builds a

Distinguished Career

Architect Tib Tusler, our 2012 Distinguished Alumnus, reflects on his time at Breck and his career in health-care facilities design.egg: Developing a New Service

30

28 | B  obbie Tonkin, Jenny Bennett, Marie Murphy: Helping First Graders Become Confident Writers 30 | Lois Fruen: Enhancing Scholarship and Scientific Study

On the cover: Construction is everywhere you look at Breck this fall. Here, second graders work with visitors from the Minnesota Children’s Museum to learn about urban planning and building.

Photo by Sher Stoneman

18


40

FALL 2012

TODAY AT BRECK Today at Breck is a publication of

Breck School, 123 Ottawa Avenue North, Minneapolis, MN 55422 email: communications@ breckschool.org

Head of School

4

46

10

Departments 4 | 20 Questions

40 | Alumni News

We asked, and they answered:

A brief report on alumni events,

Kwaku Bodom ’15, Kim Schafer and

new Alumni Council members,

Edward Kim

Jennifer Peterson

reunions and more.

Director of Advancement

7 | 123

42 | C  lass Notes

Activities, accomplishments, awards,

Alumni share recent news.

items from the summer and early

46 | Sports News

Meredith Cook VanDuyne

Editor and Chief Writer Jill Field

Design

ThinkDesign Group: Linda Henneman, Claire Moyle, Corey Sevett

Writers Daniel Bergerson ’13, Emily Colwell ’14, Gay Gonnerman, Carey Sirianni, Erin Strong

Photographers Paul Blesi, Emily Colwell ’14, Chelen Johnson, Lauren Kiesel, Nina Killingstad ’12, Matthias Orfield, Byron Rice, Karyl Rice, Sara Rubinstein, Sher Stoneman, Erin Strong

announcements: here are some fall at Breck.

7 | Who Knew? Fun facts, both current and historical (no, there won’t be a quiz!)

14 | Ten Things You Didn’t Know About… Homecoming, that wonderful

Breck athletes had a spectacular spring season, and we’ve got a complete report.

48 | In Their Own Words Bishop Prior shares the wisdom of

a children’s book at Baccalauteate.

all-school celebration

Printing

Bolger Vision Beyond Print

MISSION Breck is an Episcopal, coeducational, college-preparatory day school enrolling students of diverse backgrounds in grades preschool through twelve. Breck’s Mission is to:

Prepare each student for a college whose culture is compatible with the individual’s needs, interests and abilities. Help develop each student’s unique talents and potential to excel by nurturing independence and self-worth. Instill in each student a deep sense of social responsibility.

Breck School is committed to environmental stewardship. This publication is printed on paper manufactured with electricity in the form of renewable energy (wind, hydro, biogas) and a minimum of 30% postconsumer recovered fiber.


3 One of the things I admire most about Breck is our community’s artful blend of tradition and innovation. On a foundation of enduring values, Breck develops dynamic new academic programs. In accordance with longstanding standards of excellence, Breck creates new ways for more students to attain those standards. For more than 125 years, Breck has kept faith with its past while reinventing itself to meet the challenges of the day. The Upper School transformation currently underway is a perfect example, and I can’t think of anything more typically and wonderfully Breck. Our building project is going well. And though it’s my first at Breck, this is the fourth major academic building project with which I’ve been involved. Along the way, I’ve learned that the best outcome – one I fully expect to experience about a year from now – is when we ask ourselves only one question: “Why didn’t we do this before?” While the building takes shape, we have been thinking about the curricular transformations also under construction. One particularly exhilarating example is the Melrose Family Center for Servant Leadership, a program that will help make service a more deeply meaningful element of the Upper School curriculum. Drawing upon a concept that has transformed the culture of many large U.S. corporations, servant leadership at Breck will provide a structure for us to give students a foundation in leadership skills that will serve them and their communities well long after their Breck graduation. Though our campus looks different during this year of construction, it’s important for me to underscore what many of you have already observed. Nothing is fundamentally different. It may take longer to get from “Breck East” to “Breck West,” and we have to go outside to do so, but we are firmly focused on realizing our mission. Our approach has modeled the kind of mental flexibility we expect of our students, as it encompasses looking at what’s possible, gathering information and considering different perspectives before we act. And the process has been accessible even to our youngest students. Every time I pass through the science hallway and see a Lower School class incorporating the construction into their academic work and imagining their future selves, I know that we are building more than just a new facility for the Upper School. I’m delighted that this issue of the magazine celebrates Homecoming and some very special elements of our community, including our photo of “legacy” families (alumni whose children are now Breck students) and profiles of alumni members of our faculty and staff. They’re all a constant reminder of how we can look forward and back at the same time, and how Breck is so much stronger as a result.

EdWARD Kim Head of school


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

questions 4

KWAKU BODOM ‘15: BRECK sophomore 1

What’s on your iPod?

7

What advice would you give to

13

Favorite website?

Maroon 5 – “one more night,” old

yourself 10 years ago?

YouTube because it has everything

school songs like “Candy rain” by Soul

Read more!

you need!

4 Real and “Cameras” by Drake 2

What’s one of the last books

you read?

8

What do you remember from

surgeon who grew in in a rough neighborhood and was able to rise above to save many lives with his work 3

What’s your favorite time of year?

Springtime because people tend to be more relaxed, and that’s always a good thing. 4

What’s your favorite Breck lunch?

Italian dunkers by far! 5

you’d have over to dinner?

Eating applesauce at snack time with a

Michael Jackson, Kevin Hart and

yellow spoon that looked like gold

Will Ferrell 15

9

My dad. He came to America from

What is the most important room in your home? The dining room because it’s where my whole family gets to spend time together and as us kids get older it’s more valuable. 10

What’s your favorite place on the

Breck campus?

always worked hard: on the farm with

McKnight Stadium. Football is my pas-

his adoptive parents, in school and

sion, and I can be in my own world as

playing sports.

soon as I set foot on the field.

Dream job?

Working at Under Armour. I like their gear, and I’d like to give free stuff to kids who can’t play sports because they can’t afford equipment.

football in ninth grade 16

If you could read anyone’s mind,

whose would it be? Bill Gates’ to find out where he gets the great computer ideas 17

If you could travel anywhere,

where would you go? Ghana 18

Pet peeve?

When someone says a specific food is

Ghana when he was 13 and has

6

Best trophy/award you ever won?

The most improved player award in

Who is your personal hero

(and why)?

Three people, living or dead,

kindergarten?

Gifted Hands by Ben Carson, an auto­ biography of an African American

14

11

Favorite comfort food?

Mac and cheese 12

Favorite line from a movie?

In 300 when Leonidas yelled to the Persian messenger, “This is Sparta!”

gross right before you eat it. 19

Unfulfilled wish?

When I was younger I wanted to make a boy band and get my 15 minutes of fame. 20

What keeps you up at night?

My mistakes and achievements that I’ve made during the day


questions 5

KIM SCHAFER: LOWER SCHOOL INSTRUCTOR 1

What’s on your iPod?

David Bowie, Black Eyed Peas, White Cherry, Flo Rida, Colbie Caillat, Earth, Wind and Fire, Dan Fogelberg, Aaron Copland, and Jackson 5 (just to name a few) 2

What’s one of the last books

you read? Wonder, by R.J. Palacio, a wonderful children’s book about the power of kindness 3

What’s your favorite time of year?

Autumn

What’s the most thrilling/adventurous thing you’ve ever done? Climbing a 50' ladder to get to cliff dwellings in Mesa Verde National Park…and climbing back down again

Who is your personal hero

Baked Potato Bar ... or any lunch when there are cookies for dessert

If you had a theme song, what

would it be?

My mother-in-law! She is the kind-

It would have to be a medley. One just

est, most open-minded, fun-loving,

wouldn’t cover it .

humble, hard-working person I’ve ever known. 7

Dream job?

George Clooney’s personal assistant, an anchor job on Good Morning America, or starring in a Broadway

14

Favorite line from a movie?

“What did you learn, Dorothy?” 15

Favorite website?

Twitter, Pinterest, Allrecipes 16

Three people, living or dead,

musical. Teaching third grade at Breck

you’d have over to dinner?

is in the top five!

Barbara Walters, Lev Vygotsky, Tom

8

Best decision?

Marrying my husband What advice would you give to

yourself 10 years ago? Relax—it’ll all work out. 10

What is the most important room

in your home? The kitchen. We have a lot of fun cooking, baking, eating, playing, and talking there. 11

What’s your favorite place on the

Breck campus? What’s your favorite Breck lunch?

13

(and why)?

9

4

5

6

Lower School Library 12

Favorite comfort food?

Chocolate chip oatmeal cookies

Izzo 17

If you could read anyone’s mind,

whose would it be? My dog’s. We’re absolutely sure she thinks some pretty amusing things. 18

If you could travel anywhere,

where would you go? Tahiti, Israel, or the Galapagos Islands 19

Pet peeve?

Drivers who don’t yield and/or don’t know how to merge 20

What keeps you up at night?

Curiosity, a good book, and my husband’s snoring


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

questions 6

JEnnifer peterson: 1

What’s one of the last books

you read? Ines of My Soul by Isabel Allende 2

What’s your favorite time of year?

Fall, hands down. Weather is great and September will always mean new beginnings to me, even more so than January. 3

What’s the most thrilling/

BRECK PARENT, CO-CHAIR, 2012-13 ANNUAL FUND 13

7

Best decision? Leaving New York to attend business school at Duke, where I met my husband, John.

would it be? “Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow” by Fleetwood Mac 14

What advice would you give to

Favorite line from a movie?

“ ‘Tis but a scratch!” from Monty Python and the Holy Grail 15

8

If you had a theme song, what

Three people, living or dead,

you’d have over to dinner?

adventurous thing you’ve ever done?

yourself 10 years ago?

Thomas Jefferson, Queen Elizabeth II,

After college, I “backpacked” in Europe

Everything will work out in the end

Nelson Mandela

with an old roommate. That was well before cell phones and internet so it was a big adventure. 4

What’s your favorite Breck lunch?

I love the wrap sandwiches and salad with cranberries/nuts. 5

Who is your personal hero

9

What do you remember from

kindergarten? Mrs. Runge would keep us busy play-

Morristown, 2003-04

ing instruments and singing until it was time to go. 10

What is the most important room

in your home? The kitchen, where we cook together,

My father, Dick Mugler, a man of in-

eat, do homework and entertain

tion business in New York City, with a

11

What’s your favorite place on the

reputation for dealing with everyone

Breck campus?

honestly (sadly, not the norm). My

I’ve always liked the Salas Commons.

brother runs the company now.

It’s a great space any time of year

6

where I can regroup before or after Dream job?

Being a mom

Best trophy/award you ever won?

Volunteer of the Year, Junior League of

(and why)? tegrity who ran a successful construc-

16

a meeting and fit right in with the students. 12

Favorite comfort food?

I love a nice bowl of pasta. Any kind.

17

If you could read anyone’s mind,

whose would it be? I would love to read the (small) mind of our beagle/jack russell mix, Belle. 18

If you could travel anywhere,

where would you go? I would love to go to South America and visit Peru, Argentina and Chile. 19

Pet peeve?

Tailgaters (not the kind before football games) 20

What keeps you up at night?

I was wondering last night if it was time to change the smoke detector batteries.


7

Third grader Emily Johnson, whose art graces the cover of the 2012-13 Breck calendar

TODAY AT 123 OTTaWA ave. North

Welcome to Our New Faculty and Staff Erin Fifield, Lower School teacher assistant Veronica Guevara, Upper School Spanish Nellile Jans, Receptionist Jill Kulick, Lower School media center John Lofquist, Ice Center Facility Technician Matthew Mills, Lower School teacher assistant Emily Carr Moore, Lower School teacher assistant Bobak Razavi, Middle School English/History Sebastien Saunoi-Sandgren, Middle and Upper School French Kraig Windschitl, Chapel Musician There were also new roles for some familiar faces, including

left to right: Sebastien Saunoi-Sandgren, Erin Fifield, Matthew Mills, Bobak Razavi, Veronica Guevara, Emily Carr Moore Inset: Kraig Windschitl

Merrill Harris (PE/Health department head), Jon Martin (assistant athletic director) and Peter Saunders (Upper School English). We welcomed back Tobie Dicker and Tom Hegg from their sabbaticals—and wished Dallas Crow and Mary Jane Curran a fulfilling year on theirs.

Who Knew?

157

Number of faculty/staff donors

Number of communities our

to the Annual Fund (up from

students come from:

150 the year before)

65


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

TODAY AT 123 OTTaWA ave. North

Middle School Trio Takes First Place at National History Day Their seventh-grade year finished

“Ms. Lennox was really great,”

with quite a flourish, as Melanie

they all agree. “And the Minne-

Blazar, Halcyon Brown and

sota Historical Society was very

Cassidy Yueh collaborated on a

helpful, too.”

project that won top honors at

Melanie’s sister Brittany Blazar

National History Day. Inspired by physicians among

also had a group project reach the

their families and friends, the

national finals.

girls chose to complete their group display on the topic of the anesthetic revolution. “We’ve

left to right: Cassidy, Melanie, Brittany, Sen. Al Franken, Elena and Halcyon

been raised in a world where good anesthetics were always there,” says Cassidy. Adds Melanie, “It was incredible to see the progress—the situation was really terrible 100 years ago.” All three say they were surprised to discover that the process of doing the research and completing the display board was just the beginning. They revised and improved their board after both the regional and state competitions and appreciated all the help and encouragement along the way.

As for their trip to national competition at the University of Maryland, the girls enjoyed

meeting other students, having a collegiate experience of staying in a dormitory and sightseeing in Washington, DC, including a reception at the White House. They describe the feeling of being at the final award ceremony as one they won’t soon forget. “We barely even heard our names being called,” Cassidy recalls. “I felt like I was about to faint!” Fortunately, none of them needed anesthetic on the trip.

Community Members Invited to Perform Handel’s Messiah at Breck

Correction Due to an editing error, TODAY AT BRECK

Performing Arts department faculty Lisa Doering and Claudette Laureano are putting together a 100-voice massed choir to perform approximately 40 minutes of selections from Handel’s Messiah. Students, teachers, parents and alumni will join together for performances at the December 4 All-School Chapel and on Monday evening, December 10, in

summer 2012

8

and her partner Elena Berman

the perfect blend Breck and China pG. 28

Upper SchOOl Transformation Underway clASS Of 2012 fUtUre plAnS

the cover story on Breck and

WInter SpOrtS repOrt

China in the summer issue said Breck started teach-

the Chapel of the Holy Spirit.

ing Mandarin in Lower School in 1998.

“We performed this program four years ago,” says Doering, “and many

The correct year is 1991.

found the experience absolutely transformational. It’s such an exciting opportunity to sing great music with the extended Breck community. It doesn’t get much better than this!” Participants are required to attend three rehearsals, beginning on November 12. Interested singers who have experience and can read music can get in touch with her via email: lisa.doering@breckschool.org.

Who Knew?

612

The most popular area code for Breck families (306), followed by 952 (271), 763 (192) and 651 (27)

$900,000

Original cost to build the River Road campus


Breck Hosts 13 International Students in 2012-13 Xinruo (Sarah) Hu, China, grade 11 (Randy deBruyn and Sarah Dodge and Dr. Eric Ernst and Rena Kang, hosts) Sung Rim Huh, South Korea, grade 10 (Dr. Gina Bardon, host) Sung Wan Huh, South Korea, grade 8 (Dr. Gina Bardon, host) Rustam Kosehrbay, Republic of Kazakhstan, grade 10 (Dr. Gumaroga Lyazzat, mother) Guohao (Ruskin) Li, China, grade 11 (Randon and Kathy Roland, hosts) This year we are delighted to welcome 13 international students to Breck—and are very appreciative of the host families who make the program possible. Jeungwon (Sara) Eum, South Korea, grade 9 (Dr. Jinhwa Eum and Mrs. Hyangmee Oh, parents) Yue (Leah) Hao, China, grade 10 (Troy and Stephanie Olsen, hosts) Veronika Holobova, Czech Republic, grade 11 (Dr. Michael Maddaus and Dr. Lea Fairbanks, hosts)

Yunong (Charles) Wang, China, grade 10 (Jianmin He and Jenny Liu, hosts) Jinhui (James) Yang, China, grade 10 (Ron and Dr. Teresa Sit, hosts) Yu (Amy) Yin, China, grade 12 (Charlene Jundt and Peter Maritz, hosts) Youngmin (Jennifer) Youn, South Korea, grade 10 (Hyun Sook Park, aunt) Hongrong (Demi) Zhang, China, grade 10 (Jianmin He and Jenny Liu, hosts)

Breck Students Among Elite High School Scholars Papers from six Breck students out of 25 winning submissions were selected for publication by the 2012 National Society of High School Scholars Paper Awards.

Koop, Thyr Named National Merit Semifinalists; Six Seniors Are Recognized Two members of the Class of 2013 – Sarah Koop and Nicholas Thyr – have been named semifinalists in the

Prentice Basten for her paper titled “Rondo: A Vanished Community in the Present Day” Samarth Damania for his paper titled “A Data-Mining Approach to Identify Factors that Contribute to High Pharmaceutical Drug Costs”

National Merit Scholarship competition, Each year, less than one percent of high school seniors nationwide are awarded semifinalist recognition. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation grants semifinalist status based on junior-year PSAT scores.

Caleb Kumar for his paper titled “Designing and Validating a Java Program to Diagnose Bladder Cancer” Taylor McCanna for her paper titled “Engineering an Inexpensive Mobile Electric Field Mill to Track Changes in the Global Electric Circuit”

Five seniors were named Commended Scholars in the program: Daniel Bergerson, Greer Bingham, Stephanie Carlson, Joseph Kuhns and Emma Quirk-Durben, and Samantha Thomas was named an Outstanding Participant in the 2013 National Achievement Scholarship Program,

Claire Simpson and Jessica Ryvlin for their paper titled “Mercaptopyruvate-TEA: A Possible Antidote Against Threats of Chlorine-Induced Lung Injury”

100

Bulbs planted in the Lower School secret garden each year. The flowers are made into bouquets delivered to nursing homes.

9


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

TODAY AT 123 OTTaWA ave. North

Off Campus: Madison Lommen ‘15 Sophomore Madi Lommen didn’t

So over the summer, she got to work. With guidance

set out to become a baking

from her mother, she spent time with people in the

entrepreneur. But her “Madi-

local food industry, including Caribou and General Mills,

banani” loaves, now available at

wrote a business plan, found commercial kitchen space

Kowalski’s Market in Eden Prairie,

she could rent on an hourly basis and started her

is changing both her life and the

website: madibanani.com.

lives of others. 10

She researched sources for her ingredients and even got

“I’ve always loved baking, and I developed a great banana

her food manager certification. “Now that I’m back in

bread recipe when I was ten,” she explains. “So when I

school, it’s a little more difficult to find the time,” she says.

needed to find a way to raise money so I could go on last

“It’s hands-on work. But I’m

year’s spring break service trip to Thailand, selling the

learning so much every day.”

bread seemed like a natural choice.”

Madi hopes that her future

And after the trip, where she fell in love with the

includes travel and study

Burmese refugee children at the orphanage they visited,

abroad, and while she doesn’t

Madi realized that she could keep selling banana bread to

have a particular career in mind

raise funds for them.

she does know that she wants to make sure that whatever she

The group of ten students who made the trip with Mme.

does allows her time for service.

Schmidt was able to donate $10,000 toward the construction of a new building for the orphans, and Madi was

And she’s hoping that she can

hooked. “I started thinking about how many other

keep baking and keep changing

children I could help,” she says.

lives…one loaf at a time.

BATO BATO! Rocks the “Great Minnesota Get-Together” By Emily Colwell ’14 Breck’s marimba band, BATO BATO!, played six power-packed shows at the State Fair this September, surprising over 3,000 Minnesota fairgoers with their trademark infectious energy. This was the band’s first appearance at the fair, and to quote Mr. Brad Kohl, “It’s harder to get a gig at the Minnesota State Fair than it is to get into college!” Due to the massive and receptive crowds–roughly 500 audience members per show–BATO BATO! sold more CDs than the past two years combined. However, a little shameless advertising never hurts, so emcee Treva Kleber didn’t hesitate to point out that “our album is cheaper than two Snickers on a stick, a truckload of cookies or a tankard of milk!”

Who Knew?

157

Height of the construction crane on campus. Its arm is 230' long.


TIM Clark Elected President of Breck’s Board of Trustees The Board of Trustees has elected Tim Clark to serve a two-year term.

A Legacy of Leadership Recent Board of Trustees Presidents

Clark, CEO of the Minneapolis-based nonprofit

2000-2002

Bert Colianni

2002-2004

Sharon Ryan

2004-2006

Mike Seeland

excellence. “Thanks to our extraordinary faculty,

2006-2008

Rolf Engh

staff and administration, Breck continually strives

2008-2010

Bob Sheehy

for operational excellence,” he explains. “But it’s the

2010-2012

O.P. Portu

2012-

Tim Clark

organization Urban Ventures, and his wife Tara are parents of Natalie ’10, Melissa ’13 and Brennan ’16. He says the board will be focused on strategic

role of the board to spend significant time asking, ‘What’s next?’ and make sure we have the resources to get there.” With full credit to Head of School Edward Kim and his immediate predecessors as board president, Tim says “Both Bob [Sheehy] and O.P. [Portu] have very successfully assisted Ed in leading us to this amazing time for the school. I couldn’t be more appreciative of their efforts—or more excited about Breck’s future.” As always, he says, “the Board is focused on Breck’s strategic priorities and supporting the administration’s efforts to achieve them. In the next two years, the school will place particular emphasis on continued curricular innovation—in the new Upper School building and beyond—as well as meeting our commitments to affordability, to great teaching, and to making sure that everything we do enhances the Breck brand locally, regionally and nationally.”

BATO BATO! is technically a club in Breck’s Upper School,

benefits for nonprofits, most recently with the Advocates

but it is really much more than that. The students practice

for Community through Musical Excellence, a local

before school and on the weekends, working hard to expand

organization that provides free classical music education to

the repertoire, which is now closing in on 30 songs from a

children in North Minneapolis, acting upon the belief that music is a right, not a privilege. Last spring, BATO BATO! traveled to Cuba

variety of styles and regions. Over the past few years, BATO BATO! has given dozens of performances at venues including Orchestra Hall, the Cedar Cultural Center and the Walker Art Center.

to study percussion and dance. This February, the band will hit the road again, performing in Chicago and Madison to promote their second album. To view BATO BATO!’s photos, videos and upcoming gigs visit www.facebook.com/BatoBatoMusic.

Also very socially aware, BATO BATO! has played countless

Elephant and Piggie

Times the closing prayer after senior speeches

Favorite children’s book series for P-K-1

is the Irish Blessing: about

90%

11


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

TODAY AT 123 OTTaWA ave. North

In Memoriam

2012-13 Breck Parents Association Board The board, led by President Andrea Sheehy (front row

The Breck community notes with sorrow the passing of

center), is off to a busy start.

bus driver Fred Fortier and receptionist Claryce Boehler. Fortier died suddenly at the age of 71 on July 18. He is survived by three children, three grandchildren, a sister and a brother. He had been a member of our transportation 12

department since 2007. Boehler died of cancer at the age of 63 on July 25. If you ever called Breck’s main switchboard, it was most likely her friendly, professional

Left to right: first row, Laura Davis, Dawn Larsen, Susan Hartwig, President Andrea Kmetz-Sheehy, Elizabeth Wilcox, Susan DeMaris; second row, Tara Clark, Elizabeth Villafaña, Farida Korallus, Kelly Harrington, Adrienne Oesterle, Christine Hradten; back row, Sally Horstman, Elsie Weiler, Leslie Wille, Christine Budniewski

and welcoming voice you heard. She is survived by her husband Gary, two children, two stepchildren, her mother, two sisters, five brothers and five grandchildren. She had been our receptionist since 2003.

Briefly Noted Junior Makayla Samountry’s poem, “I Am the Unfinished,”

Visual Arts Department Head Michal Sagar’s work will be

is a finalist in a contest sponsored by The American Library

exhibited in a show called “The Future of the Past: Encaustic

of Poetry, as was junior Elle Olson for her poem, “Your Perfect

Art in the 21st Century” at Mills Gallery at the Boston Center

Little Girl.”

for the Arts October 5 – December 2.

Upper School history teacher Tim Rosenfield is serving as

Ceramics instructor Jil Franke has been busy with her own

historical consultant for a new eight-part documentary

work as well. She was an invited juror for The Best of 500

series on the presidency of John F. Kennedy titled JFK: A New

Ceramics, a Lark Book publication, and her work is currently

World Order. It is being produced by American Video Project

part of two exhibitions: “Sharing The Fire,” at the MacRostie

and distributed by Mill Creek Entertainment. His tasks

Art Center in Grand Rapids and the upcoming annual

include helping select topics, organizing sequence of

holiday show at the Lillstreet Art Center in Chicago.

episodes, checking factual information, reviewing scripts and suggesting curricular materials.

Congratulations to members of the faculty and staff for recent life-cycle events. Kelly McCool, Lower School assis-

Sue Bydlon’s fifth grade advisory won third prize in the

tant, welcomed daughter Charlotte. Aaron Sauter of our

traditional youth scarecrow contest at Emma Krumbee’s.

custodial staff welcomed daughter Eliana, Mark Ryks,

Their entry was the headless horseman.

director of transportation, welcomed daughter Abigail, and Jay Rainville, Middle School resource instructor, married Jay Squier over the summer.

Who Knew?

Who was the librarian when Breck moved to the Golden Valley campus? Upper School:

Mrs. Tabar

Lower School:

Mrs. Littleford


13


10 TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

Ten Things You Didn’t Know About…

14

HOMECOMING

Many of the Homecoming week events are planned by a committee of alumni co-chairs, working together with Alumni Coordinator Erin

1

Strong. This year’s chairs were Molly Varecka ’98, Ashley Kokal McCarthy ’02 and Chris Welsh ’90.

2

Planning starts in May, when the committee settles on a theme, and the

Alumni Association has made its recommendation for the Distinguished Alum and Athletic Hall of Fame honorees to the head of school.

3

An alumnus or alumna needs to have graduated at least 15 years ago to be

considered for the Athletic Hall of Fame.

8

Kevin Cannon ’98 has designed the Homecoming logo for the past eight years.

For the past three years, he’s also designed a Homecoming poster.

4

More than 250 alumni and their f­ amilies

5

The most popular activity for kids? The

6

Upper School students can earn service hours for helping with face-painting, another very

attended the barbeque lunch.

About 50 alumni who graduated 50+ years ago attended the Golden Mustangs

This year’s festivities included a brand new event: a boys soccer alumni pancake

breakfast.

football throw.

popular activity for kids.

7

9

10

Homecoming Saturday begins with the traditional Blessing of the Animals,

which usually attracts 150 or more animals to campus. Chaplain John Bellaimey says the biggest animal ever brought in for a blessing was a horse, the smallest a guppy, and that the ratio of stuffed animals to living is 1:4.

luncheon.

More Homecoming photos on next page and pages 40-41


TODAY AT BRECK

16

fall 2012


Back-to-school photos by Sher Stoneman and Karyl Rice

17


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

With a Little Help From Our Friends

18

Breck Meals That Heal Delivers More Than Food

photos by Sara Rubinstein


19

D

eb Mallin says the idea came to her on the sidelines of a Breck lacrosse game. While she watched her son play, another parent confided that she was undergoing surgery shortly and had no family in Minnesota to depend on for support. “As a transplant myself, I could identify with her situation,” she observes. “Our son had been

in an accident two years before, and I recall how much I appreciated the generosity of families preparing and delivering meals and kind notes left at our door. I asked if I could deliver dinner for her, and then I started thinking that there should be a way to put a formal program in place for the whole school.”


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

20 The parent of three Breck students (Benj ’13, Elliott ’16 and Jeremy ’19) and a no-nonsense woman who gets things done, Mallin reached out to Breck administrators and chaplains, and the idea took shape.

Breck Meals That Heal gives the opportunity to help someone in need, within the Breck community, by providing meals for families seeking support. It’s being done under the auspices of the Breck Parents Association.

website filled up with volunteers within only a few hours of families’ being notified. “There’s no doubt in my mind that we are a unique community in that although we are all busy in our own lives and managing the details of work, family and school, no family will be left behind,” she states. “The response of families to care for and reach out so generously to others really warms my heart!” Administrators say the program is very appropriate for Breck. Peg Bailey explains, “A Lower School parent recently sent me a note expressing her sincere gratitude for being in such a caring and generous community, and Meals that Heal

Says Parents Association President Andrea Kmetz-Sheehy,

is one example of the outreach and support our families

“I’m struck by how much the program reflects a generosity

provide to one another.”

of spirit and sense of caring that is so very Breck. How

And Chaplain John Bellaimey sums it up this way: “Meals

tremendous is it that the idea for a way to come together as

that Heal, besides being a great title, says it all: there is

a community to support one of our families under duress

something profoundly healing about making and sharing

bubbles up from within; and is wholeheartedly embraced at

food together. It is so simple and timeless. Bon appetit to all.”

every level. Meals That Heal is yet another way we connect.”

Says Mallin, “It’s wonderful to know that the same parents

Needs are made known to Breck administrators and chap-

who answer the call for help so generously are raising the

lains who then alert Mallin and make sure they’re publicized

children with whom my children will learn and grow for

in the email bulletin boards parents receive each week.

years to come. I’m really heartened to know that other Breck

Signing up is quick and easy thanks to a special website

families share not only our values for education but giving

Mallin and her husband, Dan, customized. The URL is

and caring as well.” JF

BreckMealsThatHeal.org. The program has already been used twice, and Mallin says the response from the community has been incredible. After the announcement of a need in September, she says, the


21


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

22

Life in the (Con


23

struction) Zone by Jill Field

photos by Sara Rubinstein


TODAY AT BRECK

24

fall 2012

Consider the possibilities. Do your best research. Take into account varying points of view. Make decisions that support your ability to reach your goals in the best possible Way. Instructions for a history research paper? A science lab? A book report? Perhaps. But it’s also a description of the way Breck has approached the Upper School transformation currently under construction. Planning for new science facilities began in earnest at least four years ago. All through last school year, committees of

Michelle Geo Olmstead. “I love coming in every day knowing

trustees, administrators, faculty and staff met regularly to

there’s always going to be something new and different.”

select a general contractor and get ready for the board’s April “go-no go” decision as well as the City of Golden Valley’s approval for the project in May. And then there were the practical considerations, which Head of School Edward Kim was determined to think through as far in advance as possible. He appointed and convened a Logistics committee in September 2011, and that team met weekly throughout last school year. “We talked about everything imaginable,” says Director of Advancement Meredith Cook VanDuyne, “from making the recommendation to move the Upper School to the Fieldhouse to what kind of packing boxes would make it easiest for the teachers. It was a fantastic introduction for me to Breck, and I really

Groups of Lower and Middle School students are a regular sight as they take internal field trips to check out the progress. Second graders in Ty Thayer’s class found the construction site to be an especially exciting location for their regular “verb hunt,” where they look for verbs in action. Says Thayer, “It was a very rich experience!” In addition, Thayer’s class is finding parallels between the building and their study of plants. “Botany is all about interdependence, and so is construction,” he explains. “We’ve been having great discussions about that. We’re also working on personal narratives where the students develop timelines and imagine themselves as high school students. Now they’re

gained an appreciation for how thoughtfully and deliber-

thinking about what it will be like to be in the new space.”

ately decisions get made here.”

Chemistry students are focusing on the molecules of items

Learning in a Living Laboratory Following the day-to-day progress of the construction project has provided any number of “teachable moments” and a great deal of entertainment as well. Advancement staff members, who have been temporarily relocated to offices along the corridor outside the Upper School science labs (so that the Upper School and College Counseling offices could use their space), have had a front-row seat since the beginning of the summer. “It’s been a wonderful distraction,” says Campaign Director

found in and around the construction site. A recent display held models of the molecules of acetylene (fuel for the cutting torch), tetrafluorethane (used to seal pipe joints), vinyl chloride (in PVC pipes), itaconic acid (in adhesives and paint), along with those for cut grass and sand. First graders in Carol Grams’ art classes have an annual project where they make magic hats. This year, she says, they decided their magic hats would be construction helmets. “Their hard hats are wonderful,” she enthuses, noting that her second grade classes are doing very detailed observational drawings of the construction site. “They’re


25

As Our Upper School Transformation Takes Shape, Thoughtful Planning Helps Everyone Feel Like a Part of Something Big

photo by Karyl Rice


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

really looking at shapes, and colors, and all the changes from week to week. I can’t remember when we’ve had something so interesting to draw so close to our classroom.” Upper School art students in Kat Corrigan’s Creative Design class, assisted by her sixth-grade advisees, discovered a project right outside their classroom door as well. Looking at the blank chain-link fence that encloses the outdoor corridor between “Breck East” and “Breck West,” they located blue and gold plastic cups that fit into the openings. (Corrigan says they did a Google search for “decorate chain link fences” and found a product from a company in Texas that also 26

helped with the graph design.) The result is a decorative and whimsical herd of running mustangs, in keeping with the class’ study of street and graffiti art. Working together, Corrigan and her students did the initial installation – but ran out of blue cups. “I’ve ordered more,” she says. “And cups in other colors as well so that throughout the year the Creative Design classes can reinvent the mustangs, adding embellishments according to the season.”

Timeline: START TO FINISH April 2012

May 2012

June 2012

July 2012

August 2012

Breck Board gives

City of Golden Valley

Groundbreaking

Demolition of former

Fieldhouse receives

approval

gives approval

Upper School

certificate of occupancy

And emerging writers in Bobbie Tonkin’s first-grade class

even when the work isn’t.” And, for his part, Blesi says this

bring their observation journals along for a view of the

project—his eleventh at Breck—is the “best ever, completely

construction site every six days. They record changes in both

because of Tim and McGough.”

words and pictures. “They’re honing their observation skills,” Tonkin explains, “which is useful in both language arts and science. And it’s exciting for me to watch, too.”

And what are they most looking forward to when the project is over? Not surprisingly, the pair agrees on that, too, finishing each other’s sentences. “Seeing people move in

Strong Leadership Leads to Strong Partnership

and enjoy it, and watching what that will mean to the Breck

Overall vision has been provided by Kim, Breck’s Board of

culture,” says Blesi. “Such an eye-opener when you’ll be able

Trustees and especially its Building and Grounds committee,

to see what the new space can do to enhance teaching,” says

headed by alumni parent Mary Neal, along with a team of

Mahanna. “Right,” says Blesi. “And all the things we haven’t

administrators. Upper School Director Melissa Soderberg has

had space for before.”

been deeply involved with the project, as has Business Manager Wendy Engelman.

Special Considerations Require Special Attention

Day-to-day responsibility for the project is shared by Tim

The work on campus provides some interesting challenges,

Mahanna, project supervisor from McGough Construction,

not the least of which is that the job is what’s called an

and Breck’s Building Supervisor, Paul Blesi. The two men also

occupied building. Because they’re not erecting a new

share a mutual admiration and a particularly effective

structure in some remote location but instead trying to work

working relationship.

around a school very much in session, the McGough crew

Mahanna, who has been supervising construction projects since 1979, says his partnership with Blesi “makes it easy

has had to make some compromises. For example, they learned quickly that we were serious


about not scheduling deliveries between the hours of 8-8:30 a.m. and 3-3:30 p.m. “I’ve worked some complex jobs before,” Mahanna jokes, “but your carline is really something!”

Fieldhouse space available.” In fact, says Kim, the logistics committee wasn’t originally sold on the Fieldhouse idea. But after they looked into

Breck’s location in the middle of a quiet residential neighbor-

alternatives including setting up trailers on the tennis courts

hood presents challenges as well. Construction traffic flow

and finding a space to rent for the Upper School offsite, they

and work hours have been adjusted to minimize disruptions

realized that it was the perfect solution.

to our neighbors.

“It’s funny,” Soderberg remarks. “We worried about so many

Athletics and the Parents Association will also be affected.

things, including whether it would feel disjointed to have

Losing the use of the Fieldhouse for the school year has

the bulk of Upper School academics take place in the

made alternate plans necessary for winter sports (particu-

Fieldhouse. But the truth is that it’s been completely jointed.

larly gymnastics) and the annual Special Olympics Poly

And it’s actually been a lot of fun!”

Hockey event. The Admissions office has been keen to minimize disruption

Life in the “Pods”: The Faculty View The Fieldhouse space was almost immediately dubbed the

and make prospective families, especially Lower School

“pods” by students and faculty alike (although we’ve also

families, as comfortable as possible during campus visits.

heard less flattering terms like “spaceship” and “zoo”). How

“Once families see the plans and understand that the work

has it been for the teachers?

will be done before school starts in 2013, they’re very enthusiastic,” says Director of Admissions Scott Wade. “But

Upper School History instructor Charlie Grossman says he’s been especially pleased by the proximity to other members of

September 2012

December 2012

June 2013

August 2013

September 2013

Steelwork begins

New construction

Renovation of former

New building

Dedication ceremony

completely framed

science classrooms

complete

and celebration

and enclosed

we want them to have a good experience while they’re looking here now.” They’ve created an Admissions satellite office in a relocated preschool classroom and have plans to make Breck umbrellas available for days when tour guides have to deal with inclement weather as they dash outside to get from one part of the building to the other. And then there’s the matter of those 1,200 students, faculty and staff. Mahanna says it’s been a joy to be part of school life. “We’ve had lots of opportunities to observe great kids, great families and great teachers,” he observes. “We understand that every decision we make could potentially impact all of them for years to come.”

Home, Sweet Fieldhouse Relocating the Upper School to the Fieldhouse space for the current school year has been a fascinating project in and of itself. “I think people are amazed by the Fieldhouse,” observes Soderberg. “They can’t quite believe that we put this much thought and effort into building a non-permanent space. But it’s so important to have a well-designed space for teaching and learning. And we are so fortunate to have had the

27


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

Wong says her new classroom is also helpful for international students. “It’s really a haven for them,” she explains. But the transition wasn’t completely smooth for a teacher who’s had 30 years to accumulate materials in her old classroom. “I threw away almost as much as I kept,” she laughs, noting that it took many late nights and weekends – and the assistance of her husband Walter – to sort through all her junk. “I’m grateful to have had that opportunity,” she says, “but it wasn’t easy!” “It really feels like a school,” adds Grossman. “We’re doing great academic work, but in a much more relaxed atmosphere. Maybe it’s because we can write on the walls, or maybe it’s because there’s so much more faculty and student

28

interaction or because we all get the pleasure of seeing how much the seniors are enjoying their lounge. But the truth is that the overall stress level seems to be way down – and that’s something all of us can enjoy.”

Life in the “Pods”: The Student View We gathered a small group of Upper School students to ask how the year is going so far. They were candid and forthcom-

his department – something that will be even more enhanced

ing, and nearly all admitted that the arrangement has

in the finished product. For example, he and fellow tenth-grade

exceeded their expectations.

history teacher Lori Merrill have already developed a new unit

For seniors, especially, the move was a shock to the system.

together. “We’re able to do things just because we see each

“When I first heard about it, I cried,” admits Marielos Cabrera.

other all the time,” he explains. “And in one of our daily

“I’d been looking forward to my senior year and my chance to

conversations, we started talking about a project where

be part of the senior hallway for 15 years,” says Duffy Fallon.

students will compare four different empires in 1500, looking

“I would walk through senior hall and think, ‘Someday, this

at their relative strengths and weaknesses. I think it’s going to

will be me,’” observes Georgia Keller. But with the old senior

be a great experience for the students, and there’s no way it

hallway a distant memory, the students have had fun

would have come about in our former space.”

developing some new and special traditions all their own.

Similarly, Chinese teacher Margaret Wong credits the

“My first impression was that it was kind of an all-white prison

Fieldhouse layout with giving her extra time to work with

facility,” jokes Duffy. “But, you know, it’s been kind of fun.”

students. Because she formerly had to share a classroom – and leave it when another teacher was using it – Wong says she spent a lot of time packing up her things and finding places to work – none of which she has to do now. “I’m able to help juniors with their homework during their free periods because they always know where to find me,” she relates. “And I’ve had such fun decorating my own room and letting students help me with creating an environment.”

Traversing the sunny corridor that connects the Fieldhouse to the rest of the building has provided a good transition. “When you walk into the Fieldhouse you feel transported,” says junior Anjali Madhok. Freshman Cecily Nordstrom agrees. “When I first heard about it, I was expecting the space to feel claustrophobic. But it doesn’t at all. At first I really missed having outside windows in the classrooms, but having fewer distractions is probably for the best.”


The arrangement isn’t perfect, of course. Students are coping

everyone seems to enjoy the cartoons that are constantly

with extra distances, especially to performing arts classes.

playing. “It’s kind of funny to hear Spongebob when I come

“It’s a long walk to get to Mr. Hegg,” observes junior Ruskin Li.

out of my math and history classes,” laughs Cecily. “It creates

There’s also the matter of the Chapel Green serving as a

a pretty relaxed atmosphere.”

construction staging area. “I’m kind of sad that we won’t be able to use the front lawn for graduation,” says Marielos. And then there’s having to go outside to get to the Chapel. Anticipating the cold weather to come, Georgia says she’s already planning to bring gloves. What’s been good about the space? Nearly every student we talked to commented on how much they’ve enjoyed the togetherness. “Being all together in the same place really does make us feel more like a self-contained community,” says senior Niara Hill. “I get to see all my teachers every day,” says her classmate Joey Gamer. “It’s a chance to be more friendly with underclassmen,” observes Duffy. The seniors are enjoying their special space at the far eastern end of the Fieldhouse, even if it’s adjacent to the faculty lounge area. They’ve had a television installed there, and

As for the classrooms themselves, students have very positive things to say. “The rooms are actually nicer than our old ones,” observes Joey. “I’m excited to see how teachers are decorating their classrooms with their own artwork,” says Niara. “I love the lighting in rooms like Mr. Darrow’s and Mr. Bell’s where they’ve brought in lamps,” says Marielos. And, anticipating the brand new spaces to come next year, sophomore Stephen Headrick observes the following. “I’ve been on college trips with my siblings, and I realize how much our new atmosphere is going to look like what I’ve seen on college campuses. That’s pretty exciting, too.”

Looking to the Future Despite the hassle of packing up and moving from the old classrooms to the Fieldhouse and, soon, to the new construc-

We gathered a small group of Upper School students to ask how the year is going so far. They were candid and forthcoming, and nearly all admitted that the arrangement has exceeded their expectations. tion, there’s been a feeling of “excitement, energy and renewal,” says math instructor Brad Kohl. “It’s been a long time since we’ve had to jump into the unknown. It’s also a time of resolve, resilience and collaboration. Because of this I’ve had an opportunity to meet and work with people in the building I wouldn’t ordinarily even see – and it’s been fun! Now that the door has been opened, it’s not likely to close.” Observes Soderberg, “Even though we know we’ll have to pack up and do it all again, it’s been wonderful to see the school make such a bold move. I think we all really feel part of something very important not just to us but, more important, to Breck.”

29


TODAY AT BRECK

30

fall 2012

The Ties That Bind: Alumni Enrich Faculty and Staff

photos by Sara Rubinstein

While the Breck Alumni Association looks for ways to connect graduates to their alma mater, some Breck alumni have an especially close-up view. The nine alumni profiled below, members of Breck’s faculty and staff, are blue-and-gold through and through. Says Human Resources Director Mary Healy, “It’s wonderful to have alums on the faculty and staff. Their understanding of Breck’s mission is already a part of the fiber of their being – which brings an automatic strength to their work.” And while they didn’t all know each other as students, they do share some common traits. “You immediately feel their motivation and passion to be as good as the teachers who instructed them,” observes Healy. “But they do all have one hurdle to overcome: calling their colleagues —their former teachers—by their first names.” We asked them all to answer a few questions, and here’s what they wrote.


Sarah Flotten ‘85 Eighth-Grade History What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student? Really, I have so many. I played several sports at Breck and, although we worked hard, we were not always the most talented team on the field or court but I did learn to win and lose with grace! My senior year, we were playing Concordia

the first year the girls’ varsity broke 500. Who was your most memorable Breck teacher? Most of them. I was incredibly fortunate to have amazing teachers who knew me, knew how to push me and, knew I could do more than I thought I could. Probably the most memorable teacher was Liam Taaffe. Not only because of his tragic death my senior year, but also because of how passionate he was. A captivating storyteller, his Irish accent kept me spellbound in European and Russian History. He would also play music the last few minutes of class most days while leaning on his podium above to the saying, “music hath the power to soothe the savage beast.” He introduced me to everyone from Clancy Brothers, to Janis Joplin, Beethoven and Bob Dylan. What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today and when you were a student? The most prevalent difference is technology and ease in

Academy, our toughest opponent in the Tri Valley Confer-

which my students can access the world and are in constant

ence and somehow we jumped ahead early in the game and

contact with each other.

promptly went into a four corner stall. The parents began to

Finish the sentence: Breck students are...

laugh and we managed to keep the score close and that was

fortunate.

Rob Johnson ‘90 Middle and Upper School Religion What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student? Abel Sanchez named Homecoming King. He had come to Breck as a junior but was the most popular kid in the whole school. Lower Schoolers even knew him. So when the crown was put on his head...I’ve never heard a sound like that. It was like there was no sound, just one long high-pitched Beatlemania scream. Who was your most memorable Breck teacher? Mr. Peterson. Never met such a combination of fierce intelligence and withering sarcasm. What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today and when you were a student? Many different kinds of students here now. When I attended, there were very few kids that were of working-class families. There were few varieties of religions represented. And the amount of different races were laughable. Finish the sentence: Breck students are... lucky.

31


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

32

Emily Jones ‘94 Lower School Media Center What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student?

the old Apple IIs! When I was in college, the Internet was

Grandparents Day

brand new and email only existed on college campuses. It’s

Who was your most memorable Breck teacher? Michael Moos What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today and when you were a student? Computers. I am grateful that I learned good typing skills on

amazing to think how far we’ve come in such a short period of time. Finish the sentence: Breck students are... fortunate to have so many terrific opportunities for discovery and inquiry.

Evan Jones ‘86 Fifth-Grade Science What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student?

Finish the sentence: Breck students are...

I remember a lot about being a student at Breck. Mostly I

awesome, motivated, fun and they take care of each other.  

remember the close “friendships formed within these walls.” Who was your most memorable Breck teacher? Betty Hancock was my religion teacher. She was a grandmother figure who motivated me (us) to have trusting relationships.   What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today and when you were a student? The campus is VERY different. Also, the use of technology allows more immediate access of information for students.  


Mike Nelson ‘07 Advanced History Research assistant What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student? The closeness that students had to each other. To this day I still get together with my longtime Breck friends. Who was your most memorable Breck teacher? Mr. Rosenfield. He was a true inspiration of mine to enter the field of teaching history! What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today and when you were a student? Well, the major difference is the location of the classes during

33

construction. So much is going to be different physically, but Breck as a school and their goals have stayed the same. Finish the sentence: Breck students are…

that promotes learning, and a community that is very

very fortunate to have such amazing teachers, an atmosphere

supportive.

Deb Pogue Mixon ‘87 Tutor What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student? One of my favorite memories of being a Breck student is returning to campus each fall for preseason soccer practices. It was great to see all of my soccer buddies and gear up for the soccer season. Every fall when I drive into Breck for the first time I feel as though I should be in my soccer gear going to practice. Who was your most memorable Breck teacher? There are so many!! The first ones to come to mind are Ms. Fruen, Dr. Miller (previously known as Mr. Miller in my day), Mr. Hegg and Mr. Rosenfield. They made their classes entertaining and I enjoyed their talent and enthusiasm for

teaching. Thank you! What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today and when you were a student? The biggest difference between Breck today and when I was a student is technology! I used a typewriter in high school to write papers and if you made a mistake you had to use correcting tape to fix it or retype the whole page. There are also a lot nicer cars in the student parking lot. Finish the sentence: Breck students are… a joy to work with, and I am blessed to be a little part of their education. They take the “work” out of work.


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

Elizabeth Powers-Dempsey ‘82 Kindergarten teacher What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student?

What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today

Many favorites…but one is when they locked all the ninth

and when you were a student?

graders in the school overnight…(who knows why)…and we

My class was the first class to graduate from the Golden

played volleyball and basketball most of the night and then

Valley campus. When we arrived in ’81 there were a lot of

watched movies in the social studies rooms at the River Road

rooms and spaces that were not being used at all because

campus. We were all exhausted and crabby when morning

they had not been specified for anyone’s use/purpose. Now…

came around…but it was a lot of fun.

we are building a new Upper School because there wasn’t

Who was your most memorable Breck teacher? 34

Liam Taaffe. Amazing teacher. Brought history to life to all

enough room for all that Breck is now currently offering its students.

those who were in his classes. I will never forget him blaring

Finish the sentence: Breck students are…

Marlene Dietrich over his speakers to allow us to know what

Breck Students…Parents…Faculty…and Staff…are my

the soldiers were hearing in the trenches during WWII.

community.

Ty Thayer ‘90 Second-Grade Teacher What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student?

What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today

It is difficult to choose just one. I would have to say my top

and when you were a student?

memories are all connected to May Program. I interned in

I think there is a better awareness of our existence as a P-12

our preschool program (which pushed me into my current

school. It feels as if we are utilizing this as a strength more

career), and went to Tanzania with Dr. Miller and Ms. Franke.

often. I am constantly impressed by how our older students

Both of these opportunities truly changed my life.

watch out for and care for our younger ones.

Who was your most memorable Breck teacher?

Finish the sentence: Breck students are...

Tom Hegg. He was there as a teacher, a mentor, and as an

inquisitive.

understanding adult. Mr. Hegg is one of those people who is always available.

Dina Wolkoff ‘84 Director of Development What’s one of your favorite memories of being a Breck student?

What’s one of the biggest differences between Breck today

The last day of kindergarten, my teacher, Mrs. Miller, patted

and when you were a student?

me on the head, said some caring words, and sent me down

The campus, the size of the school, and the diversity.

the hall to my first grade classroom of Mrs. Goddard. Who was your most memorable Breck teacher? Too many to count! Ann Young, Van Anderson, Margaret Wong, Peter McGorry, Paul Chmelik, Michael York, Joe Prouse

Finish the sentence: Breck students are... smiling and extraordinary.


35

Thayer

Powers-Dempsey

Wolkoff


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

36

2012 Distinguished Alumnus Wilbur (Tib) Tib Tusler has had an extraordinary career, but he says he doesn’t feel all that distinguished. As an architect whose practice centered on healthcare facilities, he worked with approximately 100 hospitals both in the U.S. and abroad and developed a strong sense of the way a facility’s architecture can contribute to improved patient care.

cavalry also came with a sword, boots and spurs – which was very appealing to my girlfriend at the time. But my cavalry career ended one day when we were lined up for parade and they shot off a cannon. My horse charged across the field to the barn with me in tow.” After Breck, he attended the University of Minnesota as an engineering student but transferred to Virginia Tech when he discovered his own passion for architecture. (It was in his lineage: his father, Wilbur H. Tusler, was a Minneapolis architect whose firm designed the Foshay Tower, the main post office and many other prominent buildings.) The younger Tusler earned both a B.S. and M.S. in architecture from

Tusler says that, along with the Boy Scouts, Breck played a

Virginia Tech and went on to the Masters class at MIT, where

strong role in building the foundation for his future career.

he spent a year studying with some of the most famous

“I consider myself a mediocre student at Breck,” he observes,

architects in

“although I did enjoy after-school activities, particularly

the world.

fencing, genealogy and chess. I also loved science and had an outstanding literature teacher.”

After a year or two in

He remembers his long commute to and from school, which

Boston

involved both a bus and a streetcar, as well as his military

designing

career at school. Tusler recalls, “I started in the infantry,

houses, he

marching in the sun with a rifle and a wool uniform. After

made his

two years of this I thought the cavalry looked like a better

way to San

option, because I could ride and not walk. Being in the

Francisco and


Central du Page Hospital, Winfield, Illinois

Tusler ’50 Designs a Distinguished Career the firm of Stone, Marracini and Patterson, which specialized in health-care architecture. He stayed there 37 years, working on projects including M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston and a hospital for Native residents living above the Arctic Circle. Since his retirement, Tusler has devoted his energy to research in health facilities via the foundation he established, the Coalition for Health Environments Research. “We provide an evidence-based foundation for decisions regarding new hospital design and renovations,” he explains. “Part of the research we sponsored and disseminated has led to a national guideline requiring all single-occupancy rooms in new hospital construction. No more sharing a room with a snoring bedmate!”

Recent Distinguished Alumni 2002 R. T. Rybak ‘74 2003 William H. Brown ‘47, John M. Brown ‘49, James Patterson Brown ‘51*, Robert S. Brown ‘56 2004 Christopher L. Murray ‘80 2005 Mary Sarah Fangman ‘86 2006 Fletcher S. Driscoll ‘51 2007 Stacey Kohler Moran ‘82 2008 Alec Soth ‘88 2009 Robert C. Roosen ‘50* 2010 Richard W. Clary ‘72 2011 David R. Williams ‘83 *deceased

For a complete list, visit the website at breckschool.org

In his personal time, Tusler has enjoyed many canoe trips in the Boundary Waters, hiking over every pass in a 150-mile stretch of the eastern Sierra mountains, photography and voracious reading. “I’m married to the love of my life, Kaki,” he says, “and together we have four children who bring joy and sometimes aggravation to our lives.” He spoke to a very attentive audience of Upper School students at the Distinguished Alumni Chapel during Homecoming week in September and got the opportunity

to learn more about Breck’s Upper School transformation, currently under construction. “Everyone at Breck was as hospitable as they could be,” he reflects. “Kaki and I had a wonderful time.” JF

photo by Steve Hughes

37


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

38

Eight New Members Join the Alumni Council Matt Bartel ’02, a 2006 graduate of

lifer and sister to two other Breck lifers

customers such as Allstate, Best Buy,

Carleton College, is the founder of

(Hannah ’05 and Gary ’08), Leah says

Delta and Target. He has moved

Posse Media, a web consulting

she is very committed to giving back

in-house and manages mobility for

company that has developed projects

to her communities from which she

Thomson Reuters. Ben’s wife Breia is

for the City of Minneapolis, Caring-

has received so much.

an attorney at Faegre Baker Daniels,

bridge and Giada de Laurentiis. Over the last year, Matt has split his time between Minneapolis and Madrid, Spain, while working with National Geographic and Blue Zones, LLC to research the happiest and longest living people in the world.

Mike McKeon ’98, a graduate of St. John’s University with his MBA from

sional napper.

St. Thomas University, spent four years

Chas Simcox ’00 graduated from the

in Europe working in the food

University of Minnesota. He lives in

industry. Since his return to Minne-

Minneapolis and currently works at

sota, he’s been working on freelance

Cresa Partners, and coaches boys

marketing and finance projects in the

hockey in Chanhassen.

Susannah Brokl ’03 is rejoining the

food industry and is currently involved

council after moving back from China

on several M&A advisory projects and

last year. She is currently working in

assisting Whole Foods with the launch

marketing at Whole Foods and is an

of a new line of exclusive-brand

assistant coach for the Breck girls

products.

hockey team.

and their dog MacGyver is a profes-

Lauren Ulvestad ’00 has an undergraduate degree from Hobart & William Smith Colleges (and a third-place NCAA trophy in women’s rowing) and, after three years in

Ben Schleuss ’99 graduated from St.

Seattle, a J.D. from William Mitchell

Elizabeth Dunlap ’07 graduated from

Olaf College and spent eight years in a

College of Law. She works in the IT

the University of Michigan in Ann

small consulting firm focused on the

Litigation group at McGladrey &

Arbor, transferring there after two

wireless needs of large enterprise

Pullen LLP in Minneapolis.

years at St. Olaf College. After graduation, she interned with Cargill Risk Management and has recently started a job in corporate finance at 3M in St. Paul. Leah Lussier Sixkiller ’03 graduated from Harvard College and the University of Arizona College of Law. She practices at Faegre Baker Daniels and lives in downtown Minneapolis with her husband Jesse Sixkiller. A Breck


Mile-High Meeting Alumni Relations and College Counseling Greet Recent Grads in Denver It was a terrific time in Colorado when alumni relations and college counseling had lunch with young alums at the University of Denver in October. The conversation was great, and the Breck staff left feeling reassured that Breck graduates feel very well prepared for life in college. We’re hoping to arrange more meetings like this one in other cities across the U.S. to reinforce the partnership and keep young alumni connected to Breck. 39

1947 Class Reunion

1977 Class Reunion

1992 Class Reunion

1997 Class Reunion

2002 Class Reunion

2007 Class Reunion


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

Homecoming 2012: A Great Weekend for the Mustangs

40 Kevin Williams ’82, Chris Reinertson ’85, Del Carter ’50, and Dan Doheny at the Athletic Hall of Fame induction

Legacy Families 2012 Breck alumni and their students gather at Homecoming.

The Gaillard family: Drew ’88, John-Charles ’22, Henry ’24, Megan and William


41 The Drawz family: Paul ’92, Sarah, Margaret ’23 and John ’25

Gavin Hoffman ’97 and son

Scott Wiggins ’94 and family


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

Adams, Nancy Johnson, Amy Cleary Binning, Jud Champlin, Elizabeth Powers-Dempsey, Rick Yonker and Adam Wolkoff. Madeline Williams was inducted into

42

class notes

Breck’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

1985 Chris Reinertson was inducted into Breck’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

1986

campus during Homecoming week,

Glen Weaver-Lang has been named to

and Tib addressed the Upper School

the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic

1947

in a special Chapel. You can read more

Conference (WIAC) All-Time Team,

about Tib on page 36.

meaning he was voted one of the 17

Tom Thiss planned the class of 1947’s

1952

reunion year

65th reunion at the Golden Mustang Luncheon over Homecoming weekend.

best hockey players to go through the WIAC system in the past 100 years. Glen is the all-time leading scorer

Choddy and Bill Carpenter planned

in University of Wisconsin-Superior

1949

1952’s 60th class reunion over Home-

history, where he was a team captain

coming weekend.

of the first Yellowjacket team to ever

Twin Cities philanthropist Richard

reach the NCAA Division III Men’s

Proudfit received the prestigious

1969

Jefferson Award for public service in

This past summer Steve Mitchell

was inducted into the UW-Superior

July. He won the award for creating a

appeared as Falstaff in Henry IV, Part I

Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006.

packaged meal that has been con-

with the Fairbanks (Arkansas)

sumed by millions of poor children

Shakespeare Theatre.

around the world as founder of Feed

Hockey Championships in 1992. He

Michael Proman ’99 and Keith Ylinen served as co-chairs for the 2012 Ath-

1977

letic Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony,

the nonprofits will deliver one billion

Tim Kennedy, owner of Hidden Harbor

’82, Chris Reinertson ’85 and Gavin

meals this year.

Marina in St. Paul Park, hosted his

Hoffman ’97.

35th class reunion over Homecoming

1987

My Starving Children in 1987 and now Kids Against Hunger. Combined,

1950

weekend.

Del Carter helped to organize this

1982

year’s Golden Mustang Luncheon held

which honored Madeline Williams

Katie Lund McKenna and Steph Burnet Ott planned the 25th class reunion at the Chambers Hotel over Home-

during Homecoming week at Breck

coming weekend.

School Anderson Ice Arena, honoring alumni who graduated from Breck 50+

1988

years ago.

Drew Gaillard, who has chaired the

Wilbur (Tib) Tusler

Distinguished Alumni committee for

was named Breck’s Distinguished Alum-

The class of 1982 had a very well-

nus for 2012. He and

attended 30th class reunion over

Kaki spent time on

Homecoming. The planners were John

the past three years, spoke at Upper School Chapel during Homecoming week.


1990

1994

honored David for his career in football and baseball at Breck. You can see

Brendan Taaffe’s music group, Bright

Megan Elizabeth

Wings Chorus, is featured in August’s

Jewett was born

Utne Reader music sampler. They’re

on July 24. As

planning to record again at the end of

usual, Lynn and

Chas Simcox and Lauren Ulvestad

October and have started a Kickstarter

Tony Jewett were

have joined the Alumni Council. See

the segment on him on the station’s website, www.twelve.tv.

project to raise funds to help group

caught off guard and not expecting

page 38 to read about what they’ve

members travel to the recording

her to come so fast. She joins the big

been up to.

session. You can check out their project

bruisers, siblings Peter and Kate.

on the Kickstarter website. Ty Thayer is organizing the Third

1997

Annual Hennepin Church Rocks event

Drew Johnson, Kate Purdy Stephens,

funded by the Hennepin Foundation.

Jon Donaldson and Liz Scattarella

This is a free all-ages show on Friday,

Clemente planned their 15-year re-

November 16. Doors open at 6:30.

union over Homecoming weekend.

Music begins at 7:00. Music lineup is Chastity Brown / Daredevil Christopher Wright / Black Audience. Ben Tritle, a Commander in the U.S. Navy, is serving as a Naval Liaison Officer at the U.S. Consulate General office in Hong Kong.

Ashley Kokal McCarthy ’02 served as co-chairs for the Homecoming BBQ and carnival. This year’s theme for the BBQ was construction.

Cally Morrison Norris and Caryn Mead Kelly planned a very wellattended 20-year reunion weekend in August.

Ciernia ’02 in February. Emily Hawkins Rogers and Jason Rogers were married last July in Fergus

Breck Athletic Hall of Fame.

Falls. They had several Breck alumni in

1998

their wedding party. Katrina Hawkins

Mike McKeon has joined the Alumni

Katherine Freund and Anastasia

Council. See page 38 to read about

Molly Varecka, Chris Welsh ’90 and Ashley Kokal McCarthy ’02 served as co-chairs for the Homecoming BBQ and carnival. This year’s theme for the BBQ was construction.

1992

Derek Ciernia married Keelia Fannon

Gavin Hoffman was inducted into the

what he’s been up to.

Chris Welsh, Molly Varecka ’98 and

2001

1999 Michael Proman and Keith Ylinen ’86 served as co-chairs for the 2012 Athletic Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

Leach ’03 was the matron of honor. Haddy were bridesmaids. Jason and Emily currently live in Underwood, MN. Gwen Heasley came back to Breck in October to talk to students in all three divisions about life as a published author.

2002 Matt Bartel has joined the Alumni Council. See page 38 to read about what he’s been up to lately.

which honored Madeline Williams

1993

’82, Chris Reinertson ’85 and Gavin Hoffman ’97. During May Program, the class “French

Ben Schleuss has joined the Alumni Council. See page 38 to read about what he’s been up to.

Keelia Fannon Ciernia and Derek

2000

Ciernia ’01 were married on Febru-

Lewis-Sadrant at the Alliance Fran-

David O’Hagan was inducted into the

wedding party members included

çaise in downtown Minneapolis. Alix

Channel 12 Hall of Fame for the class

is the education coordinator for the

of 2011. Channel 12, which serves

Alliance Française, “where French

Minneapolis’ northwest suburbs,

Connections in Minnesota” met with Alix

culture meets the Twin Cities.”

ary 18, 2012, in Minneapolis. Breck Katie (Fannon) Rogness ’99, Meredith Benson Doran, Natalie Burns Furst, Jori Miller, Lily Knopman Beilin, Marit Eales, Shayne Ciernia ’11, Troy

43


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

Ciernia ’03, CJ Nibbe ’01, and Colin

featured on 89.3FM The Current and

Hohman ’01, as well as many other

their blog and has recently completed a

Breck guests. Keelia graduated from

music video for his song, “San Fran.” It’s

the University of Minnesota College

available on both YouTube and iTunes.

of Veterinary Medicine in 2012, and

2006

Derek graduated from the University of St. Thomas School of Law in 2009. Meg Teckman was married to Andrew Fullard of Barrow-in-Furness, England, at Hammersky Vineyards in Paso Robles, California, on August 4. Breck faculty Margaret Wong and classmate

44

Kelsey Gamblin were in attendance. Ashley Kokal McCarthy, Matt Bartel,

The couple currently live in Hong Kong.

Amy Stark, Natalie Burns Furst and

2004

Keelia Fannon Ciernia planned the class’ ten-year reunion last June at the Golden Valley American Legion.

degree in English and American Literature from NYU in 2011 and began the Ph.D. program in English and American Literature at the University of Maryland this fall. She writes, “Hope all is well at the school. I wouldn’t be where I am today without Breck.”

2007

Erin Austad, a 2008 Boston College

Katia

graduate, received her M.D. from

Ashley Kokal McCarthy, Chris Welsh

the University of Minnesota Medi-

’90 and Molly Varecka ’98 served as

cal School in May 2012. In June, Erin

co-chairs for the Homecoming BBQ

began her residency in Emergency

and carnival. This year’s theme for the

Medicine at Hennepin County Medical

BBQ was construction.

Center, a level I trauma center located in downtown Minneapolis.

2003

Sarah Bonnie received her master’s

Dragotis and Elizabeth Dunlap planned their fiveyear reunion over Homecoming weekend at The Local. Elizabeth Dunlap has joined the

Susannah Brokl and Leah Lussier

2005

Sixkiller has joined the Alumni

Alex Frecon is recording and produc-

about what she’s been up to.

Council. See page 38 to read about

ing his own hip-hop music and says

what they’ve been up to.

his career is building steam. He’s been

Are you LinkedIn? Nearly 550 Breck alumni and parents are LinkedIn. Are you?

Visit breckschool.org to connect.

Alumni Council. See page 38 to read

Breck’s Online Photo Gallery Visit our online Zenfolio Gallery to see what we’ve been up to so far this year. Browse, download, print, enjoy!

breckschool.zenfolio.com


Maggie Simons won first place in an essay contest sponsored by Transitions Abroad, which arranges study programs for college students. Maggie’s essay, called “A Foreigner in the Middle Kingdom: Living, Working, and Studying in China,” is posted on the organization’s website, transitionsa-

2011

Memorials

Cara Kowalchyk, Rebecca Southern and Ellie Soskin are co-authors of a

1946

paper titled “Chemotaxis to Furan

Charles Keyes passed away peacefully

Compounds by Furan-Degrading Pseu-

in August. He will be remembered in

domonas Strains” that was published

the Breck community.

in June in Applied and Environmental

broad.com.

Microbiology. This is research they did

2008

were participating in the Advanced

Breanna Heilicher is teaching Chinese at DeLaSalle High School in Minneapolis. She was excited to discover that the school had chosen Margaret Wong’s textbook series for her class, and she’s taking full advantage of her relationship with the author. “Wong Laoshi is the best resource I could ever have,” she says. She’s was at Breck in September observing Chinese classes here.

2009 Nick Peine was named MVP of a recent national comedy competition for college students on 32 different campuses across the U.S., sponsored by TBS and Wendy’s. As a result, Nick won a VIP trip to TBS Presents Just for

at the University of St. Thomas while

Jack C. Nichols passed away April 18, 2012. Jack was a State Farm insurance agent in Edina for 37 years who is re-

Science Research Program.

membered as a kind, gentle man with

Former teammates Kayla Mork and

travel, enjoyed fine foods and spend-

Milica McMillen ’12 will face each

ing time at the cabin.

other when Kayla’s New Hampshire Wildcats face Milica’s Minnesota Gophers in two hockey games over Thanksgiving weekend in Durham,

a great sense of humor. He loved to

1951 Richard “Richie” Ahern died July 30,

New Hampshire.

2012, in Scottsdale, Arizona. He moved

2012

retired from Target. He was a dedicated

Michael Burwell was named to the

ing member of the Lake Minne­tonka

All-State Lacrosse Team 2012. This

Figure Skating Club. Richie is a member

past August, he participated in the All-

of Breck’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

Star State Lacrosse Game. Breck Coach Hank Marotske coached the opposing team but in true Mustangs spirit was cheering and coaching Michael down the field. Michael is attending the

to Arizona in 1979 and had recently coach and avid hockey fan and a found-

1984 Peter Minnihan died September 25, 2012. He is survived by his father, step-

University of Denver.

mother, mother, stepfather, brother,

chology major at Boston University,

Josh Luger has joined False Advertis-

where he was the winner in last year’s

cousins.

ing, one of Brandeis University’s four

Funniest Student Competition.

improv troupes. He was one of 33

2010

students who auditioned for three

Kristina Tester, who founded a non-

Former teammates Milica McMillen

profit organization several years ago

and Kayla Mork ’11 will face each

to support students in sub-Saharan

other when Milica’s Minnesota

Africa in their quest to get an educa-

Gophers face Kayla’s New Hampshire

tion, is excited to announce the launch

Wildcats in two hockey games over

of a new look and a new website for

Thanksgiving weekend in Durham,

So Others May Learn. Kristina says

New Hampshire.

Laughs Chicago. Nick is a senior psy-

the organization continues to grow and sponsor more students. The web designer, St. Paul-based Rocket55, has helped the fundraising efforts. The URL is www.soothersmaylearnorg.

available parts.

stepsister and his aunts, uncles and

45


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

Boys Tennis Team and Myles Tang Are Class A Champions Golf and Track Send Athletes to State Tournaments, Too Baseball Finishing their regular season with three straight wins, the Mustangs were 4-6 in the conference and won their first two section games before falling to a tough Delano team in the subsection championship. Seniors Tyler Hudson and Austin Lommen were named all-conference, and Andrew Keiser and Austin Rudnick were honorable mention.

Boys Golf The boys finished third in their section with an 8-2 conference record and a 9-3 overall record for the season, and sophomore Max Schwartzman played in the state tournament. With two seniors, three sophomores and an eighth grader, they look to be strong contenders again this year.

Girls Golf The girls showed a great team effort and finished 4-5 in the conference with eleven golfers lettering. Eighth grader Anna Zumwinkle played in the state tournament.

Boys Lacrosse With great senior leadership from Michael Burwell and Joe Miller, a very young Mustang team won only one game but had three players named to the all-section and all-state teams. Burwell, on the second team, played in the all-state game. (For more about that, see the Class Note for 2012 on page 45.)

< Girls Lacrosse The team showed a big improvement over the previous year and had great leadership from its four seniors: Tori Goldstein, Maddy Holker, Carly Schaeder and Ellie Soskin in her Girls Lacrosse

first year of playing goal. The girls won four games and are looking for more success in 2013.


< Boys Tennis The Mustangs capped off a great season with a terrific showing at state. As a team, they repeated as Class A state champions, the section 5A champions and conference champions, and their only loss was a 4-3 heartbreaker to Edina. Myles Tang won the state singles championship, Andrew Engel and Tucker Sjoblad placed second in Class A doubles, and brothers Austin and Brenham Wong won the Class A doubles consolation match. Engel, Sjoblad, Tang, Wong and Wong were all named to the all-state and all-conference team. David Alper was also named all-conference, with Samarth Damania and Lewis White honorable mention.

Boys Track

47

Track and Field > Both boys and girls teams had a good season and a great showing at the state tournament. For the boys, Andrew Headrick and Kasey Robinson were named all-conference with Anton Gougeon, Geoffrey Hibbs and Jake Levy honorable mention. For the girls, all-conference honors went to Adria Duncan, Halle Gustafason, Nailah Hill, Niara Hill, Morgan Williams and Kira Hinz. At the state meet, Headrick participated in the 100 and 200 meter dash and Hibbs in the shot put for the boys. For the girls, the 4 x 400 relay team of Halle Gustafson, Jaila Tolbert, Adria Duncan and Morgan Williams placed third, Niara Hill took eighth in the long jump, her sister Nailah Hill placed ninth in the shot put and com-

Girls Track

peted at discus, and Kira Hinz participated in the long jump.

VISIT THE BRECK ONLINE GYMSTORE Apparel · SPIRIT GEAR www.breckschool.org (choose “Breck Store” at the bottom)

Check out our new reusable shopping totes!


TODAY AT BRECK

fall 2012

In Their Own Words

2012 Baccalaureate Address by the Rt. Rev. Brian N. Prior Bishop, Episcopal Church in Minnesota, and Chair, Breck Board of Trustees 48

Bishop Prior’s address began with his reading aloud from In the Forest, by Marie Hall Ets. I bet it has been a while since some one has read to you. I bet

stories can be tragically cut short—may that alone motivate

you’re wondering why I did not finish the story. To help

us to live our stories with intention.

remind you, like this story, our life is a book with many chapters each building on the one before it. And like every good book as the chapters pass by they move more quickly.

Because you could choose to just let your stories write themselves, and on some small level they will. Or you can seize the moment, seize the story, truly make it your story

That’s why it’s critical that we pay attention to the chapters

and using your experience, your history—all that has

we’ve experienced and the one we are in—because each

brought you to this moment in your story—and then add

builds on the other—each is to be lived into fully.

every ounce of two incredible ingredients—two critical

We are people of story. Right here in this chapel you have

components in every great story: imagination and passion.

Christian traditions. The story of each of you shared in your

That’s what makes the difference in our life story: intentionally writing our story filled with imagination and passion. The boy went for a

senior speeches. . .

walk in the forest and soon his story was filled with talking

heard the sacred stories from our varying faith traditions, as we heard tonight from the Jewish, Native American and

Oh, and of course all the stories that will get better with age

and instrument-playing animals all in a parade that he led.

—of what happened in the rink, the classroom, the theater,

Stephen Denning’s A Leader’s Guide to Storytelling states,

the hallway or the bus trip.

“Stories are trapdoors, escape hatches, portals through which

And that’s what’s so wonderful about this place in your story. There’s an intentional pause that many of you will not take again for a while. How many times in recent days have you looked back, or people have shown you pictures of your childhood or at least the last four years or your senior year, all punctuating this moment, this place in your story. What is critical about this place in your story, is because of that punctuation, that pause, you have a moment to reflect and through this to be even more intentional about the chapters ahead of you. And the reality is that, in many respects, up to this point you have not been the primary author of your story. Your parents, your teachers and others they have taken the lead in terms of helping you write the early chapters of your story.

Now you become the primary author of the next chapters of your life, which of course means you not only have the privilege, but also the responsibility for the story. And our

we can expand our lives and learn about other worlds. They offer guideposts to what is important in life. They generate meaning. They embody our values. They give us clues from which we can discover what ultimately matters.” And, “You don’t discover your story from predetermined elements; you create yourself through telling your story.” And as your story draws to a close once again you will not be the primary author. It will be your loved ones, those you have shared the journey with you, who will write the last chapter. What they say will be directly based on the chapters you now begin to write. My prayer for you is that your stories not only say that you cured cancer, brought peace to the world, ended all forms of oppression and saved the environment. But as important, that you led an intentional life filled with imagination and passion, being light bearers of love and compassion. May God richly bless you and your story!


discover the benefits of giving wisely with a planned gift. Become a member of the James Lloyd Breck Society. Joining the James Lloyd Breck Society is something anyone can do through a simple designation in your Will or Trust, or with a gift that generates income for life. Want to get started? Visit the Breck website and use our interactive and straightforward “Plan a Gift” tools and sample

legacy.vg/breckschool

bequest language, and find out what type of planned gift is right for you.

to join those in our community who have made a commitment to breck now and in the future, who have named breck in their will, or as a beneficiary of their retirement plan or trust, please

contact dina r. wolkoff ’84, director of development via email dina.wolkoff@breckschool.org

or phone 763-381-8208.


123 Ottawa Avenue North

Minneapolis MN 55422-5189

Parents of Alumni: Please forward this publication. If your daughter or son no longer maintains a permanent address at your home, please notify us (763-381-8230 or alumni@breckschool.org) of the new mailing address.

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Fall 2012 Today at Breck  

Fall 2012 issue of Breck's magazine, Today at Breck

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