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333 Christian Street, Wallingford, CT 06492-3800



Change Service Requested

Original proposed site for Memorial House, Richard Rummell, c 1919. See Remarks from Alex D. Curtis, Headmaster on page 3.

“All Choate was an evolution.” – FORMER HEADMASTER GEORGE ST. JOHN

The Choate Rosemary Hall Bulletin is printed using vegetable-based inks on FSC-certified, 100% post consumer recycled paper. This issue saved 101 trees, 42,000 gallons of wastewater, 291 lbs of waterborne waste, and 9,300 lbs of greenhouse gases from being emitted.

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In this issue:

PRO SPORTS: Alumni Demonstrate a Passion for Endurance

CUBA: Now Open for Exploration

A RECOLLECTION: Edward Albee ’46 Comes to Choate

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choate rosemary hall

COVER Portrait by Tom White. Daily life in Cuba.

Reunion MAY 12–14, 2017

2’s & 7’s Let’s celebrate!

Faculty traveled last summer to El Nicho waterfalls in Cumanayagua, Cienfuegos province, Cuba. (See story on p. 22.)



Choate Rosemary Hall Bulletin is published fall, winter, and spring for alumni, students and their parents, and friends of the School. Please send change of address to Alumni Records and all other correspondence to the Communications Office, 333 Christian Street, Wallingford, CT 06492-3800. Choate Rosemary Hall does not discriminate in the administration of its educational policies, athletics, other school-administered programs, or in the administration of its hiring and employment practices on the basis of age, gender, race, color, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, genetic predisposition, ancestry, or other categories protected by Connecticut and federal law. Printed in U.S.A. CRH161110/17.5M

Classes ending in 2s & 7s: This Spring is your chance to Editorial Offices T: (203) 697-2252 F: (203) 697-2380 Email: Website: Director of Strategic Planning & Communications Alison J. Cady Editor Lorraine S. Connelly Design and Production David C. Nesdale Classnotes Editor Henry McNulty ’65

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Communications Assistant Britney G. Cullinan Contributors Kenneth G. Bartels ’69, P ’04 Harriet Blanchard Allyson B. Bregman Lorraine S. Connelly P ’03, ’05 Joanna Hershon ’90 Seth Hoyt ’61 Courtney Jaser G. Jeffrey MacDonald ’87 Kevin A. Mardesich ’87 Benjamin Small John Steinbreder ’74 Andrea Thompson

Photography Casey Brooke Jessica Cuni Sarah V. Gordon Taylor Holland Lauren Martini Ross Mortensen David C. Nesdale Kevin Pataky Ray Ross USA Hockey Tom White

relive memories and spend some time with the people who helped create them. We are planning an exciting slate of events, but the weekend won’t be complete without you. For more information go to:

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CONTENTS | Winter 2017


2 3 4 30 34


54 60 64

In Memoriam Remembering Those We Have Lost


End Note Why I Teach by Harriet Blanchard


Remarks from the Headmaster On Christian & Elm News about the School Alumni Association News Classnotes Profiles of Howard Morrison ’61, Co-founder, Verdant Kitchen; Jamie Lee Curtis ’76, actress and children’s book author; Michael A. Lerner ’76, screenwriter; and Ken Kennerly ’83, sports impresario


Gap Year? What You Need to Know An Interview with Dr. Allyson B. Bregman


Remembering Edward Albee ’46 A Reminiscence by Kenneth G. Bartels ’69, P ’04


Life in Pro Sports Alumni Demonstrate a Passion for Endurance


Cuba: Through the Lens of the Humanities, Arts & Sciences A Faculty Perspective

Scoreboard Fall Sports Wrap-up Bookshelf Reviews of works by James P. Lenfestey ’62, Jamie Lee Curtis ’76, Maria Semple ’82, and Alyson Richman ’90

Choate Rosemary Hall Board of Trustees 2016-2017 Alexandra B. Airth P ’18 Kenneth G. Bartels ’69, P ’04 Samuel P. Bartlett ’91 Peggy Brim Bewkes ’69 Michael J. Carr ’76 George F. Colony ’72 Alex D. Curtis P ’17, ’20 Borje E. Ekholm P ’17, ’20 John F. Green ’77 Linda J. Hodge ’73, P ’12 Ryan “Jungwook” Hong ’89, P ’19

Brett M. Johnson ’88 Vanessa Kong-Kerzner P ’16, ’19 Cecelia M. Kurzman ’87 Gretchen Cooper Leach ’57 James A. Lebovitz ’75, P ’06, ’10 Kewsong Lee ’82 Patrick J. McCurdy ’98 Robert A. Minicucci ’71 Tal H. Nazer P ’17 Peter B. Orthwein ’64, P ’94, ’06, ’11 M. Anne Sa’adah Henry K. Snyder ’85

Life Trustees Charles F. Dey P ’78, ’81, ’83 Bruce S. Gelb ’45, P ’72, ’74, ’76, ’78 Edwin A. Goodman ’58 Herbert V. Kohler, Jr. ’57, P ’84 Cary L. Neiman ’64 Stephen J. Schulte ’56, P ’86 Edward J. Shanahan P ’92, ’95 William G. Spears ’56, P ’81, ’90

Editorial Advisory Board Judy Donald ’66 Howard R. Greene P ’82, ’05 Dorothy Heyl ’71, P ’07 Seth Hoyt ’61 Henry McNulty ’65 Michelle Judd Rittler ’98 John Steinbreder ’74 Monica St. James P ’06 Francesca Vietor ’82 Heather Zavod P ’87, ’90

Follow us! Like us! Tweet us! Watch us! Share! Pin! View us!

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I Just finished reading James Kaiser’s article on the National Park System in the Fall 2016 edition of the Bulletin. My wife, Karen, and I have had the privilege of enjoying many of our National Parks over the years, including our most recent adventure to Crater Lake National Park this past July. Our visit included a boat ride out to Wizard Island where we got to hike to the top of a volcano within a volcano. The views were spectacular (see photo below) as we enjoyed the stunning beauty of the clearest (and 9th deepest) lake in the world. I just wanted to second Mr. Kaiser’s celebration of all that the National Parks have to offer and encourage my fellow Choate alums to pick one to visit soon. My only advice is to try to avoid the summer months when the crowds are at their peak, especially at the more popular parks. And then be sure to get off the beaten path a little to fully experience the wonder of these national treasures.

You have a gift for making a piece connect with readers on a deeply personal level. As I read the article Saying Yes to Success: Young Eisner Scholars Find Success at Choate, in the Fall 2016 issue of the Bulletin, I found myself saying out loud, “I know Teo Menocal, Class of 1962. My dad, who was in Choate Class of 1935, often spoke about Luis Menocal, Teo’s father. These quality connections keep readers coming back.

Sincerely, Chuck Sabo ‘79 Augusta, Georgia

Many thanks for the nice picture and coverage in the beautiful alumni magazine.

Seth Hoyt ‘61 Long Lake, Minnesota


Betsy Stiefvater O’Hara ’63 Cornwall, United Kingdom

MASTERFUL JOB Since my daughter is a Choate alum, we receive your magazine at my home. I think the magazine looks great! You did a masterful job with the redesign and this issue is no exception. Gorgeous photography and illustration, lovely and interesting layouts – it’s one great spread after another. Andrea Hopkins P ’09 Madison, Connecticut

A SOPHISTICATED REVIEW You and contributor Steven Lazarus put together a sophisticated review of my book, A New Look at Humanism: In Architecture, Landscapes, and Urban Design (Spring 2016), that captured the spirit and look of the book along with the content. Thanks very much. That’s hard to do. Overall, the Bulletin is looking very good these days. Bob Hart ’46 Tiburon, California

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Remarks from the Headmaster

Dear Alumni and Friends of Choate Rosemary Hall, Before leaving for winter break, I was interviewed by a reporter from the Choate News about some of the artifacts in my office – objects that inform my daily life at Choate Rosemary Hall and provide moments of reflection and clarity. One piece that is particularly meaningful for me is a provisional sketch of the Choate campus in 1919 by Richard Rummell (see back cover illustration). The sketch was made after Hill House was completed and indicates future possibilities for expansion, with a companion building to be constructed where the Lueza and Bruce Gelb ’45 track now stands. In his Forty Years of School, former Headmaster George St. John wrote, “There was no question about where the Hill House should stand. There was for it one inevitable site: at the top of the school hill, overlooking the South Campus.” However, by 1919 and the First World War’s aftermath, the site plans for a companion building, Memorial House, had moved from south of Elm Street to its present Christian Street location. What prompted George St. John to rethink the campus master plan? He made a prescient walk of the campus with his stopwatch, and concluded that the distance of the proposed site beyond South Elm was too far for the youngest boys in the lower school to walk. Foremost in St. John’s decision-making were the needs of the students he was there to serve and nurture. “The greatest risk,” he said, “would be not to do everything good … for the present and future of the school.” The Rummell sketch serves for me as an object for deep reflection. This sketch is, in fact, for me a meditation on St. John’s own guiding principle as headmaster “that all Choate was an evolution.” He was unafraid to revamp a vista or vision guided by this singular thought: What is best for the students? In that spirit, I think George and his wife, Clara, would be thrilled with the new vision for St. John Hall that will open this spring. Designed to fit into the landscape and architecture of Hill House Circle, the building already appears to be a long-time campus fixture and is designed with “the good” of present and future students in mind, while remaining true to our school’s abiding mission to provide students with transformative and meaningful experiences that instill lifelong habits of learning, leadership, and service. Our magazine pages are filled with stories of alumni, students, and faculty who are living out Choate’s still guiding principles and demonstrating their own commitment to learning, leadership, and service. From a recent faculty professional development trip to Cuba, to alumni making their mark in the world of pro sports, to the thoughtful reminiscence of the late Edward Albee ’46 by Trustee Kenneth Bartels ’69, P ’04 – each of these stories is a testament to the very best that Choate Rosemary Hall has to offer. I hope you enjoy reading about these wonderful examples of the transformational impact of a Choate Rosemary Hall education. With all best wishes from campus,

Alex D. Curtis Headmaster

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Rabbi Barbara Paris wraps students inside the Torah, the sacred scroll of the Jewish people, and offers a blessing.

Torah Scroll Dedicated Choate Rosemary Hall welcomed the permanent installation of a Torah (the sacred scroll of Jewish people) on Sunday, September 25, through a gift from the Spears Endowment for Spiritual and Moral Education. The Spears Endowment was established by former Chairman of the Choate Rosemary Hall Board of Trustees, William G. Spears ’56, P ’81, ’90. A welcome parade led by the Klezical Tradition Klezmer Band of Fairfield, Conn., accompanied the sacred scroll around campus grounds with members of the community joining in. The Torah was carried under a traditional chuppah (wedding canopy) before it was walked over to its permanent home in the Seymour St. John Chapel. After the procession, Headmaster Alex Curtis gave welcoming remarks: “It is an honor to be present today as our school receives and installs a Torah scroll in our chapel. This is a historic occasion! I know it is one that has been in the works for several years and it is very meaningful to see it finally happen today – and to see it here in our chapel and to have it installed in this wonderful, hand-crafted ark.” Said Rabbi Barbara Paris, “It is very fitting that the Torah will be housed in our beautiful multidenominational Seymour St. John Chapel. I never

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stop being amazed how Choate truly embodies what can be possible when all the faiths come together in mutual respect and understanding. We are a microcosm of all that is good in the world. My goal at Choate as the Rabbi is to plant seeds within our students so that they will write the Torah that is true to them, and live an ethical life built on Torah and lovingkindness. To have this sacred scroll available for our students to use today and in the future is truly special.” Rabbi Paris then led a brief ceremony as the scroll was unrolled. Richard Stainton, of the Choate Facilities Department, built an ark of maple and basswood, situated in the front of the Chapel, where the Torah scroll will be kept. The doors of the ark were carved by Harvey Paris, husband of Rabbi Paris, and the President of Jewish Family Services of Connecticut. The Torah’s embroidered cover was donated by Dr. Adam Beckerman and his wife, Julianne, parents of Brandt ’13 and Logan ’16. An embroidered cover for the Yad, the Torah pointer, used by a reader to follow the text during the Torah reading, was a gift of Charles and Deborah Eisenson, parents of Jonathan ’16.

St. John Hall Student Center Update The St. John Hall Student Center, opening in 2017, will prove to be a pleasant surprise for today’s students. Designed to fit into the landscape and architecture of Hill House Circle, the building appears to be a long-time campus fixture. Upon entering, Choate students will be welcomed by a central staircase and lounge with fireplace. At the hub of student activities, the grand entrance connects students with spaces to study, play, eat, and collaborate. A dedicated game room, viewing room, and formal study space occupy the first floor. Adjacent to a flexible gathering space for dances and events, a reimagined Tuck Shop will provide snacks and café seating. The second floor features a redesigned Choate Store which will offer apparel, essentials, and school supplies. And, the third floor is equipped with dedicated space for student publications, video production, and student collaboration. Deans’ Offices, day student lockers, and comfortable lounge seating will draw students throughout the building. Also, as part of the project, the College Counseling Office will move into newly renovated offices located on a hallway connector between St. John Hall and Hill House Dining Hall.

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Choate at NAIS Diversity Conferences The National Association of Independent Schools’ People of Color Conference and Student Diversity Leadership Conference were held in Atlanta, Ga., from December 8 to 10. Attending the conference was a Choate contingent of educators and students. In addition, history and political science teacher Judi Williams collaborated with talented, equity-minded teachers and administrators from around the U.S. and the Caribbean to craft groundbreaking, effective curricula and activities for the Student Diversity Leadership Conference with approximately 1,600 student participants. Says Williams, “Participating as a SDLC faculty member was a really enriching experience. It helped further solidify my commitment to diversity, equity, access, and inclusion, particularly in independent schools.” Says Choate’s Director of Equity and Inclusion Keith Hinderlie, “Choate was one of the larger school groups at the conference, making a statement about our commitment to diversity and inclusion. The keynote speakers were inspiring and the conference workshops expanded our thinking, affirmed what we are already doing, and provided specific strategies to make our school even stronger.”

From left, Director of Admission Amin Gonzalez, psychology teacher Tiffany Kornegay, Director of Summer Programs Eera Sharma, Arabic teacher Georges Chahwan, Assistant Director of Athletics Aliya Cox, and math teacher and Choate Icahn Scholar adviser Jorge Olmo.

Choate Booth at World Maker Faire

Dr. Travis Feldman, Director of Choate’s i.d.Lab, with Choate students at the World Maker Faire held at the New York Hall of Science.

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Nine students and four faculty members traveled to New York City on October 1 and 2 to participate in the World Maker Faire held at the New York Hall of Science in Flushing, N.Y. Design projects from Choate Rosemary Hall’s i.d.Lab were featured. Says Dr. Travis Feldman, Director of Choate’s i.d.Lab, “The Maker Faire trip was a two-day opportunity for Choate students to inhabit the creative maker space and forge their own identities as makers. Students were inspired, discovered new things, and stretched their understanding of the world and themselves in just the way I had hoped they would. All our participants were energetic and positive spokespersons for Choate academics.” Says Kristen Andonie ’17, of Miami, Fla., “Each of us had a small station equipped with a soldering iron, and we guided visitors through the process step-by-step. While our target audience was children, there were a lot of adults who were eager to learn how to solder, too.” For Andonie, a member of Choate’s Robotics team, this was her first Maker Faire. She noted, “I didn’t know what to expect but I found it refreshing to see people using science just for the sake of having fun, like holding drone races or building robots that make perfect grilled cheese sandwiches.”

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Arielle Landau ’17, back row, fourth from left, attended the International Conference Towards a World Free of Nuclear Weapons in Nagasaki, Japan.

Choate Participates in Nuclear Disarmament Conference As the world acknowledged the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor on December 7, history and philosophy teacher James Davidson and Arielle Landau ’17 traveled to Nagasaki, Japan, to attend the International Conference Towards a World Free of Nuclear Weapons. The conference was held December 11–16 at Nagasaki University. This is the 10th year that Choate Rosemary Hall has participated in a nuclear disarmament conference. From a student perspective, says Arielle, “I really valued the opportunity to participate in this Forum and to be able to converse with other students who are hopeful and are willing to pursue a world without nuclear weapons. I am realistic, but optimistic; a world without nuclear weapons might seem like an unrealistic goal at this point, but making people aware of the risks they pose may help lead to breakthrough in the current stalemate in international disarmament talks. Nonproliferation conferences targeted for youth also establish important connections across cultural lines, and will enable all of us to better communicate in the future.” For the past nine years, Choate has joined the Critical Issues Forum conference on nuclear disarmament, sponsored by the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. In 2015, two Choate students and Davidson attended the student conference in Hiroshima, in commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. “Having been involved in the educational program of the Critical Issues Forum for several years has been a wonderful and sobering experience,” adds Davidson. “It has inspired me to incorporate the topic of nuclear disarmament into several of the courses in our department. I have found working with our students as they think their way through each year’s topic in this important program to be extraordinary.”

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Nicholas Kristof Thalheimer Educator-in-Residence Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Nicholas Kristof spoke at an all-school special program on January 31. Mr. Kristof’s visit was made possible by the Thalheimer Educator-inResidence Program. A two-time Pulitzer Prize winner and New York Times columnist, Kristof has been an advocate for human rights in his work as a journalist. In 1990 he and his wife, Sheryl WuDunn, then also a New York Times journalist, became the first husband-wife team to win a Pulitzer Prize for journalism, for their coverage of China’s Tiananmen Square democracy movement. Kristof won his second Pulitzer in 2006 for what the judges called “his graphic, deeply reported columns that, at personal risk, focused attention on genocide in Darfur and that gave voice to the voiceless in other parts of the world.” In addition to the Pulitzer, he has won innumerable awards including the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, the Anne Frank Award, and the Fred Cuny Award for Prevention of Armed Conflict.

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2017 National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists Ten sixth formers have been named Semifinalists in the 2017 National Merit Scholarship competition: Katrina Gonzalez of Greenwood, S.C.; Austin Huang of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Jason J. Jiang of Flower Mound, Texas; Grace Kortum of New Haven, Conn.; Truelian Lee of Ridgefield, Conn.; McKynzie R. Romer of Avon, Conn.; Jessica Shi of Andover, Mass.; Claire E. Stover of Cheshire, Conn.; and Ian S. Wolterstorff of New Haven, Conn. These academically talented high school seniors will have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships this spring. Forty-five Choate students were named Commended Students in the 2017 program. In addition, four students were named National Hispanic Scholars. They are: McKynzie R. Romer of Avon, Conn.; Stefan Kassem of Princeton, N.J.; Josefina Ruggieri of New Haven, Conn.; and Elena Turner of Whitestone, N.Y.

SIEMENS SEMIFINALIST ANNOUNCED Jeong Min (Andy) Si ’18 was named a Semifinalist in the 2016-17 Siemens Math, Science, & Technology Competition, the nation’s premier competition in math, science, and technology for high school students. This year, out of the more than 1,600 projects submitted, 498 students were selected as semifinalists. Pictured here with Ben Small, science department head.

Local Middle School Choruses Perform with WSO Baritone Kurt Willett ’81 joined the Wallingford Symphony Orchestra, in residence at Choate Rosemary Hall, as a guest soloist at the WSO’s Holiday Concert on December 11. Willett, who performed selections from Handel’s Messiah, was joined by the Dag Hammarskjold and Moran middle school choruses. Maestro Philip Ventre directed the performance.


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THE ODYSSEY This fall’s student production was Mary Zimmerman’s adaptation of The Odyssey, directed by Tracy Ginder-Delventhal. “We chose The Odyssey, a text read by all freshmen, because we’re always looking for ways to tie what we do [on the stage] into the larger community,” Ginder-Delventhal told Choate News reporter Namsai Sethopornpong ’17. She explained, “It’s about the central question: Where do we feel at home? That’s a relevant question for all of us.”

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RIGHT Noah Nyhart ’17 and Lily Kops ’18 TOP LEFT Anselm Kizza-Besigye ’17 (center) and ensemble BOTTOM LEFT Liam Podos ’20 (center) and ensemble

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ON CHRISTIAN & ELM | Q & A BULLETIN: Why are gap years becoming more popular? BREGMAN: Gap years are becoming increasingly popular as students realize the potential of the time between high school and college. Students are beginning to view this time as an opportunity to engage in activities that they may not be able to complete later in life. With increased independence but few responsibilities, this is a unique period in life when students are free to explore new interests, challenge their comfort zones, and do something off the beaten path. Many students also feel as though they would benefit from time away from school. After working incredibly hard in a particular way, students want to challenge themselves outside of the classroom in order to enter college reinvigorated and motivated for the years ahead. BULLETIN: How do college admission offices view a year-long

hiatus from classrooms, textbooks, and tests? A growing number of universities, including all Ivy League colleges, view the gap year as a constructive choice for incoming freshmen.

with d r . a l l y s o n b . b r e g m a n

Gap Year? What You Need to Know Last May, when it was announced that First Daughter Malia Obama would take a gap year, or bridge year, between Sidwell Friends Academy and Harvard, the news set off a flurry of interest in the media about this recent trend in the college admission process. Dr. Allyson B. Bregman, Associate Director of College Counseling, offers answers to questions students or parents may have about this process. Bregman, a graduate of the Hopkins School, earned a B.A. from Connecticut College and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Michigan. Before coming to Choate in 2013, she was a college counselor at The Hotchkiss School.

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BREGMAN: Colleges are also starting to understand the benefits of a gap year. Students who take a gap year often describe the increased maturity, self-discovery, and growth that occurred. They appreciate the time to engage in the kind of self-reflection that fosters academic and professional goals. They also report increased confidence and the ability to interact with individuals who are different from them. These are all positive outcomes and ones that can make a powerful impact on a student’s first year of college. As a result, universities are excited to have these students on campus! In addition to the recognized personal growth that comes with a gap year, colleges have also tracked student performance in the classroom. While there was once concern that students who took time off from school might be behind, research has found that students who take a gap year often outperform their peers who did not take time off. BULLETIN: What questions should rising sixth formers, who are

considering this opportunity, be asking themselves? How about parents? What should their concerns be? BREGMAN: Rising sixth formers interested in taking a gap year should be thinking about the reasons for such an experience and what they hope to get out of their time away from school. What are their goals for the gap year? Do they want to travel and explore a new culture? Do they want to gain important research or professional experience? Do they have a passion that does not easily fit into a profession that they want to explore? Answering these questions will help students decide whether a gap year is right for them. It will also help them as they plan the activities that will encompass their gap year. It is important to note that gap years should be planned thoughtfully and deliberately. The most successful and rewarding gap years are ones that are intentional, not ones that are put together hastily. Occasionally, students wait until the spring term to decide to take a gap year, and that often is not enough time to secure the opportunities about which students are most excited. As with the college process, planning ahead is important! With more practical experience than their children have, parents can help students think through the logistics of their plans and help ensure that activities will be safe and meaningful. Parents also often help students navigate various gap year options – drawing on their own social and professional circles to connect students with opportunities and offering assistance as students weigh the pros and cons of various activities.

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“For anyone considering a year between high school and college, rest assured that you will meet with favorable response from the decision makers in the colleges. In fact, many colleges, including such Ivy League institutions as Harvard, Princeton, and Dartmouth, and Hidden Ivies like Tufts, actively encourage deferred admission and are starting to provide financial support for more students interested in service-oriented gap years.” –EXCERPT, THE HIDDEN IVIES, 3RD EDITION, HOWARD GREENE P ’82, ’05 AND MATTHEW GREENE

BULLETIN: Should students who are thinking about a gap year

still go through the college admission process? BREGMAN: Yes. We suggest that students go through the college admission process even if they are considering a gap year option. Most colleges will accept student requests to defer enrollment in order to pursue a gap year (a list of college deferral policies can be found here: Students will get more out of the gap year if they already have a college home for the following fall and are able to focus all their attention on their gap year plans. If they apply to colleges during their sixth form year, they will also be able to take advantage of support from a college counselor throughout the application process and will have an easier time requesting teacher recommendations than if they wait to apply until after they have graduated, and are potentially living away from Choate. BULLETIN: What additional resources are there to consult for

students who are thinking about a gap year? BREGMAN: Any of the counselors in the College Counseling Office are happy to discuss gap year options with students. Students may also wish to consult the American Gap Association website ( for a list of accredited programs as well as for information about structured gap year opportunities. For students interested in designing their own experience, is a wonderful resource for job, internship, and volunteer opportunities. There are also gap year fairs in many parts of the country that provide information to students on various programs and opportunities. The Explore fair at Choate occurs on the Sunday of College Information Weekend and includes programs that offer both summer and gap year options. Students may also attend a fair off-campus and can use the USA Gap Year Fairs website ( to locate one close to them. BULLETIN: What about the expenses associated with gap years?

Some year-long, immersive, international programs, for example, can run about $35,000. BREGMAN: It’s true that some of the structured gap year programs can be expensive, but those are not the only options. Some structured programs are more affordable and many offer financial aid. Students should also consider designing their own gap year

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experience, because a structured program is not required. In that case, a student would need the finances to cover living expenses (unless living at home), but would not need to pay to participate in a particular experience. Many students also choose to work for all or part of their gap year experience, whether it is the focus of their time away from school or simply a short-term activity in order to earn the money that will fund their upcoming adventure. BULLETIN: Can students earn academic credit for their gap

year program? BREGMAN: In some situations, students are able to earn college credit for their gap year program, but it depends upon the program as well as the college. Some gap year programs have formal partnerships with colleges and universities and offer college credit through those relationships. However, it is rare for a college to accept credit from a gap year program in the absence of one of these partnerships, and even if it does accept the credit, it will likely not be credit toward graduation requirements. Earning college credit may also affect a student’s standing (e.g., first semester freshman versus second semester freshman or sophomore), and that can impact financial aid and scholarships. If students are interested in earning college credit for their gap year experience, they should consult with the college about the benefits and consequences of doing so before participating in the program. BULLETIN: Is there any downside? What might be a wrong reason

for taking a gap year? BREGMAN: A gap year can be a wonderful experience as long as it is the right fit for the student. Such experiences require initiative, self-sufficiency, and independence, and students should either possess these qualities or be excited about developing them. The worst reason for pursuing a gap year is disappointment with the college admission process. If this is the reason for taking time off, then students will not be as invested in their plans and may not see the same benefits as students who intentionally chose this path. BULLETIN: What is the best reason to take a gap year? BREGMAN: Insatiable curiosity! Students who are excited to learn something new and challenge themselves in the process are those who find gap years to be the most rewarding.

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Alumni Insights

Remembering the Playwright – Forgetting

His Words

by kenneth g. bartels ’69, p ’04


I directed Edward Albee’s The Zoo Story. It was my directorial debut, and I was happy that Ralph Symonds, then head of Choate’s drama department, kept a close eye on what I was doing. I also was happy to have David Ratner ’69 cast as Peter, and Paul Zaloom ’70, who has gone on to a stellar career as a performance artist and puppeteer, cast as Jerry. A major reason I chose to do Zoo Story, of course, was that it had been written by a Choate graduate. I had understood that Edward Albee ’46 had not been back to the School much since his graduation, but since this was to be the Choate premiere of Zoo Story I thought, why not invite him? My roommate, Tony James ’69, gave me a sheet of nicely engraved Choate stationery, and I sent Mr. Albee a handwritten note, certain that there was little chance that I would receive a reply. In fact, Mr. Albee responded that he would be pleased to attend, which was a real honor for David, Paul, Mr. Symonds, and me. The performance was in the “Gymnasium Theatre” (now the Student Activities Center), and it was a cold, early winter night. Students and faculty trickled in, and then there he was, wearing what I remember as a really beautiful overcoat. Edward Albee! Mr. Albee was quite complimentary about David’s and Paul’s performances. More important, he seemed to be happy to be back at Choate. In 1972, as part of the opening celebration for the newly completed Paul Mellon Arts Center, Mr. Symonds asked whether I would return to School for a reprise of Zoo Story

that Mr. Symonds himself would direct. I would play Jerry, and a very nice Yale student, Douglas Reigeluth, who was not a Choate graduate but who was very active in theater at Yale, would play Peter. And once again, Mr. Albee would be in the audience. It was the spring of my junior year at Harvard, and I was crazily busy getting ready to spend the summer in West Africa, where I was going to do field work for my senior thesis. But who could turn down the opportunity of being part of such a grand celebration, and the opportunity to perform in a first-class play before its first-class author? So of course I said yes. I commuted to Wallingford from Boston via Greyhound bus for rehearsals, trying as best I could to memorize my lines on the way. A packed house, Mr. Albee right up front. The big challenge of the Jerry role is a 15-minute monologue called “Jerry and the Dog” about halfway through the one-hour play. It’s a rather intricate tale about Jerry’s unsuccessful attempt to poison his landlady’s dog. I got through it and the story I told was entirely coherent, but it was not completely faithful to the text. Almost no one could tell – almost – but Mr. Albee of course could tell. Afterwards, when Mr. Albee came backstage to greet us, his first comment to me was “So, you had a bit of trouble with your lines!” “Yes, Mr. Albee, I did.” What else was there to say? Mr. Albee returned to Choate a number of times in the years that followed. How inspiring for the students that someone of his stature would do this! And how fortunate we all were to have him among us.

Kenneth G. Bartels ’69, P ’04 is a member of Choate Rosemary Hall’s Board of Trustees.

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1968 production of The Zoo Story directed by Ken Bartels ’69 featuring Paul Zaloom ’70 as Jerry and David Ratner ’69 as Peter.

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Professional triathlete Dede Trimble Griesbauer ’88, based in Boulder, Colo., has had three first-place Ironman finishes.

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[ IN ]



A PASSION FOR ENDURANCE by g. jeffrey macdonald ’87

To pursue what can’t be done in any other field is what draws scores of Choate alumni and alumnae to take their transferable skills and apply them in professional sports, whether as athletes, owners, front office managers, or operations staff behind the scenes. Their careers vary widely, but they share more in common than a Choate diploma and a love for athletics. All have chosen to accept unique risks and sacrifices that aren’t required in other fields. Their journeys have shaped the types of professionals they’ve become.

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At 46, Dede is now the world’s oldest professional triathlete, with three firstplace Ironman finishes.



In 2005, Dede Trimble Griesbauer ’88 was living in Boston, enjoying fast-paced success on the trading desk at MFS Financial, when she said goodbye to all the comfort and security that came with that life. At age 35, she decided to become a professional triathlete. She was taking a giant risk, as her parents reminded her often. Injuries come with the grueling territory of Ironman competitions: run 26.2 miles, cycle 112 miles, and swim 2.4 miles in a single day against the world’s best. Top-tier elites can earn $500,000 in prizes and sponsorships, but it’s much more common to earn around $15,000 if you’re not a top finisher in any given year. Her reconfigured lifestyle with training at its center would come with no guarantees. But Dede, who shattered records in the Choate pool en route to Stanford and Olympic swimming trials, had tasted the nectar that comes with a career in professional sports. After seeing an Ironman race on TV in 1997, she signed up for one and finished third. Five years later, she was the top amateur finisher in the Florida Ironman. Her coach saw her trajectory keep rising and finally asked during a ride in 2004: Have you ever considered going pro? “It didn’t even take me two seconds to leap off my bike, jump up and down, and say, ‘Yes, I want to! I want to! I want to!,’” she recalled. “So in March, when the weather turned in Boston and it was time to train outside, I put in notice at work and said, ‘I’m going to become a professional triathlete for a year or two.’ I thought.” Eleven years later, at 46, Dede is still at it. She’s now the world’s oldest professional triathlete, with three first-place Ironman finishes behind her and a training-centered lifestyle in Boulder, Colo. She’s faced hardships far beyond the loss of her Wall Street salary. A 2011 cycling crash on wet cobblestones in Frankfurt, Germany, sent her with broken bones in a helicopter to an intensive care unit. Her doctor said her running days were over. But this self-described “endurance junkie” was in pro sports because she wanted to be challenged. “When that doctor told me I’d never run again, nothing made me more passionate to get back out there,” Dede says. “Every setback has made me full of gratitude for when I do get over it. I am so grateful for the opportunity to have gotten to do this.”

For team athletes talented enough to get drafted, the answer is often an easy “yes, of course.” It’s a chance to live a lifelong dream. But carving out a long career in pro sports requires a deeper reckoning with what matters most to a professional and his or her family. That’s been the case for sports professionals whether they earn their living on or off the field. Going pro in hockey after graduating from McGill University in 2000 was an obvious choice for Mathieu Darche ’96, a Quebec native and standout forward. But nine years later, he’d played only one full season in the National Hockey League. Most of his games had been in the minor leagues, where starting salaries were barely sufficient to raise a family in Montreal, he says. Beginning the 2009–10 season with American Hockey League’s Hamilton Bulldogs, he was 33 and mindful of the toll his career was taking on his wife and two kids. None of his teammates had children, and their girlfriends were barely old enough to drink. “You see those shows – the hockey wife, the basketball wife – you think it’s all glamorous, but it’s not reality,” Mathieu says. “It’s hard on the family. When we moved back to Montreal, my eldest was in grade two. It was his eighth house in nine years. Every shift in every game you’re fighting for your spot on the team. So there’s a lot of pressure, a lot of stress. But I would do it all again.” Mathieu stubbornly believed he was evenly matched with players who’d catapulted to the NHL, and his perseverance paid off. He joined the Montreal Canadiens in 2009 and spent his last three years playing for the team he’d cheered as a kid. Each time he punched one of his 23 goals for the Habs, Forum crowds roared. After playoff games, they dove ecstatically onto his car’s hood as he tried to leave the garage. No other job could compare. What hockey made possible, even after he stopped playing, underscores that he made the right choice to stay in it for 12 years. He provided well for his family over time, earning as much as $700,000 in a year. Though he now works in freight shipping, he keeps his hand in pro hockey with a side job as a Canadiens commentator on TV. And in business, it doesn’t hurt that new contacts already know who he is and are thrilled to meet him.

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For Vancouver Canucks Assistant General Manager John Weisbrod ’87, going pro in hockey was a lifelong plan, and he was well on his way in Wallingford. Drafted by the Minnesota North Stars after his sixth form year at Choate, he led Harvard to a national championship in 1989 before signing with the Stars’ successor team, the San Jose Sharks, after graduation. His NHL future seemed bright, but a debilitating series of injuries and surgeries quickly ended his playing career. “I had never planned on doing anything other than playing in the NHL,” John says. “So to have it all end when I was 23 years old – it was a really hard time. That’s when I started up the trail on the management side, and have taken a sort of strange path since then.” John considered leaving sports and going to law school after his shoulder replacement surgery. But being out of hockey was like being without oxygen, so he took a job he says no one wanted: general manager of the Albany Devils. The team was the beleaguered, money-losing minor league affiliate of the NHL’s New Jersey Devils. The role called for someone who could build both a winning team and solvent business – or at least figure it out on the job. “I was learning on the fly,” says John. “I didn’t have any business training. I just tried to outwork people, use common sense, and make sure to have a lot of good people around me. We were able to turn it around and fix it. And because it’s such a small shop, you get a lot of experience doing a lot of different things. You’re negotiating a player contract one minute and gluing the whiskers back on the mascot the next minute.”

Success in Albany led to a job in Orlando with an organization that owned both the Orlando Solar Bears hockey team and the Orlando Magic in the National Basketball Association. He did well there, too – so well that when the Magic needed a new chief operating officer and general manager, John got the nod at the tender age of 30. Running an NBA franchise had all the trappings of a dream job. John made some shrewd moves, such as drafting Dwight Howard, who led the Magic to four consecutive division titles. But something was missing. He couldn’t feel the court in the way he felt the rink: “I was a hockey guy in a basketball world,” he recalls from his office in Vancouver. That awareness led to another risky decision: to walk away from all the perks of a top NBA job and start over in the NHL as a low-level scout. Trading basketball’s big stage for a seat in the stands of small-town, minor league hockey games somehow felt right to him. He worked his way up, helping the Boston Bruins win the 2011 Stanley Cup and later joining management at the Calgary Flames. He now oversees scouting for the Canucks and draws on his diverse prior experience, going all the way back to Choate, Harvard, and Albany. “If you’re around enough winning environments,” he says, “you start developing a perception for: well, what’s the difference between a team that wins and a team that loses?”

“Every shift in every game you’re fighting for your spot on the team. So there’s a lot of pressure, a lot of stress. But I would do it all again.” – Mathieu Darche ’96

Mathieu Darche ’96, a native of Quebec, spent 12 years as a professional hockey player. His last three seasons were with the Montreal Canadiens.

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“We’re trying to invest in a market and in a sport and to get it promoted to the highest level … It’s the kind of thing where if it’s going to work, you have to be all-in.”

LEFT Brett Johnson ’88 shares

ownership of the Phoenix Rising Football Club. RIGHT Dave Mishkin ’87 is a radio announcer for NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning.

– Brett Johnson ’88


Brett Johnson ’88 never expected to go pro as a soccer player, nor did he fantasize as a child about working in the business. But he got into professional soccer in 2015 for a reason that rings true with others’ stories: He felt he could accomplish in pro sports something that would have been unlikely if not impossible anywhere else. Brett, a Choate Trustee and Los Angeles-based private equity investor, says he had an epiphany when he heard the commissioner of Major League Soccer talking about expanding into new markets. Phoenix ought to be next in line, he thought, since it’s a soccer-loving city and the largest metropolitan area with no MLS franchise. His goal then crystallized: to buy a major stake in the city’s minor league team, then-called Arizona United, and increase its value for the next buyer. “It’s serious business,” Brett said. “We’re trying to invest in a market and in a sport and to get it promoted to the highest level. We’ve hired an outstanding coach. We’re improving the players on the field. We’re building a stadium. It’s the kind of thing where if it’s going to work, you have to be all-in.” Brett now shares ownership with a prominent group of Phoenix business leaders, two global music icons (Diplo and Pete Wentz), and a professional baseball player for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Brandon McCarthy, and they’ve recently renamed the team, Phoenix Rising Football Club. Choate alumni James Healy ’01 and Ali Gusberg Healy ’00 are also part owners of the team. He enjoys some perks, such as when 300 friends attended his first game as coowner, but it’s also a lot of work for no salary. He expects to hand the keys to a new owner someday. “The reality of professional sports is that it’s truly not for the faint of heart,” he says. “These teams are hungry beasts. They eat 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It’s a lot of fun, but it’s a lot of work and a lot of stress as well, especially in the kind of work we’re in, trying to position the team for promotion up to MLS.”

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How did Dave Mishkin's education prepare him for the work he does as one of America’s best-known hockey announcers? Here are some tips:

GAME DAY RITUALS: STRETCH AND BULK UP. Gather reports on opposing teams, including personal histories, adversities surmounted, and former teammates. Review stats and storylines through the day. “You may only use 10 percent of your material. But you need to have it in your back pocket.” LOOSEN YOUR MIND. Spend the pre-game period studying opposing players. ”That warmup time for hockey announcers is time when you don’t want anybody tapping you on the shoulder,” Dave says. “We watch the warmups very, very carefully … That’s where the muscle memory that you need is honed.”


Owning a minor league team can be expensive, but that doesn’t mean working for one will be lucrative – far from it. Just ask the radio voice of the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning, Dave Mishkin ’87. Upon graduating from Yale, he took the road less traveled by Ivy League graduates and landed in small-town Pennsylvania. First with the Johnstown Chiefs and later the Hershey Bears, Dave wore many hats over 11 years in the minors, where radio announcers are expected to write press releases among lots of other tasks. It was a matter of paying his dues for a shot at calling games in the NHL, but with no guarantee that he’d ever get beyond Hershey. He got his big break in 2002, and for the past 14 years has honed his craft of calling games (see sidebar) with fewer distractions and none of the 20-hour days he used to pull in the minors. He shares the Lightning broadcast booth with Hockey Hall of Famer Phil Esposito, whose color commentary complements Dave’s play-by-play. When he speaks to school groups, he wonders if “follow your passion” is always good advice, but it’s worked for him, so he passes it along. “If you can find something that you love and find a profession that dovetails with that in some way, that to me is kind of the Holy Grail,” Dave says.

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“If you can find something that you love and find a profession that dovetails with that in some way, that to me is kind of the Holy Grail.” – Dave Mishkin ’87

Mental acuity separates the good from the great. Example: 70-year-old Mike “Doc” Emrick on NBC is, according to Dave, the premier hockey announcer in the U.S. “What makes him so good? His vocabulary, which allows him to paint a fast-moving game with perfectly precise language. If you’re good, you can pick a verb that sums up exactly what the puck is doing. Is it bouncing? Was it swatted? Is it spiked?”

CREDIT EARLY TRAINING AND HABITS OF MIND. Learning how to write in Choate’s English and history classes made Dave an able communicator, not only in broadcast but also in print. These days, he writes a weekly column during hockey season, as well as Web opinion pieces. When he’s cranking out copy en route to airports, he still draws on habits he built in Wallingford. “Writing is the way you present yourself to the rest of the world,” Dave says. “I can’t say enough about how much Choate, and Yale later, helped me hone that so that I was able to hit the ground running.”

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Dave’s partner-in-broadcast on the Choate sidelines in the mid-1980s, Gordon Kaye ’87, left the microphone behind. But he never lost the passion they shared for pro sports. Like Dave, Gordon’s path led through the minors, starting with a college internship for the Utica Blue Sox. There he did everything from talk to reporters to prep the infield for batting practice. He was hooked, and a career was born. For 25 years, Gordon has worked behind the scenes to make pro sports fun and profitable. His career spans the National Basketball Association, the Arena Football League, the International Hockey League, the now-defunct Massachusetts Marauders, the Reading Royals, and the Rockford IceHogs. With two masters degrees in sports management and business administration, he’s known as a fix-it guy who can reverse the fortunes of a floundering enterprise or implement game-changing ticketing technology.

”Life to me is about learning, adapting and pushing yourself to limits that you never knew you had. I’m not sure I would have had that same opportunity had I chosen a different career path.” – Gordon Kaye ’87

Julie Chu ’01, four-time Olympic champion.

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“Life to me is about learning, adapting and pushing yourself to limits that you never knew you had,” Gordon says. “I’m not sure I would have had that same opportunity had I chosen a different career path.” As Executive Director of U.S.A. Table Tennis, Gordon promotes the sport on both the Olympic and professional levels. For example, he organized the Women’s Table Tennis World Cup, a pro event in Philadelphia in September. He loves his work, which in his view is ultimately about making fans happy, but it hasn’t come without sacrifice. He’s relied on patience and understanding from his family, who have accepted the irregular hours, long business trips, and multiple relocations over the years. “The only regret that I have is the toll my career choices have had on my family’s life,” Gordon says. But professionally, he says, he has no regrets because each move has been challenging and enriching. ADVOCATE FOR OPPORTUNITY

More athletes would work in professional sports, if only the opportunities existed. That’s according to Julie Chu ’01, who coaches women’s hockey at Concordia University and plays for Montreal in the Canadian Women’s Hockey League. A four-time Olympian, Julie remembers how she benefited from Olympic training periods when a hockey stipend and sponsorships covered living expenses and let her focus entirely on her sport. Although CWHL players get reimbursed for away game travel costs, they depend on other jobs to make ends meet. She’s now an advocate for the CWHL to go the route of the National Women’s Hockey League, which pays its players and is now in its second season.

To reach your playing potential “gets more challenging once you graduate from college,” Julie says. “You have to work around a work schedule that’s not as flexible and not necessarily built around a hockey season.” THE UNSCRIPTED MOMENT

Other alums have moved beyond pro sports by expanding professional interests. Fritz Mitchell ’76, a documentary filmmaker, got his start producing National Football League broadcasts for CBS Sports. He found over time that he was interested in people’s life stories. Pro sports became just one of many canvases for his storytelling craft. He’s made films featuring the likes of boxer Muhammad Ali and baseball pitcher Bill Lee, and he’s also branched out to profile a photographer, for instance, and to tell the story of a contentious 1973 fashion show. “You get into this because you think it’s something that’s going to be fun – you can marry your hobbies with your job,” says Fritz. “People get into it for one reason but probably in a lot of cases stay in it for others. They find something in their own DNA and their own skill set where they can be effective.” But as one who still loves a good sports story, Fritz understands why professionals who could work in any field choose to work in pro sports for the long haul. For all its risks, uncertainties, and big-money influences, the industry delivers a working life like no other, along with singular experiences that never fade from memory. “That’s the best that sports can offer,” Fritz says. “The unscripted moment that brings everybody in.”

”That’s the best that sports can offer. The unscripted moment that brings everybody in.” – Fritz Mitchell ’76

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Visit to a local circus school program at Casa de la Cultura de Marianao. Photo: Jessica Cuni

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by l o r r a i n e s. c o n n e l ly

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T H E R E - O P E N I N G O F T H E A M E R I C A N E M B AS SY I N H AVA N A I N 2 01 5

after a 54-year hiatus, followed by President Obama’s subsequent official visit to the island, marked the beginning of a new chapter in diplomatic and cultural relations between the U.S. and Cuba. Last summer, three Choate teachers had the opportunity to travel to Cuba through a faculty travel program offered by World Leadership School, which runs one of the U.S. State Department’s sanctioned travel groups. Fine arts teacher Jessica Cuni, chemistry teacher Dr. Lauren Martini, and history teacher and Choate’s Director of Faculty Development Tom White traveled to Havana and the colonial town of Cienfuegos with 17 educators from the U.S. and Canada. For 11 days, the group, accompanied by program directors and a Cuban guide and bus driver, traveled and had the opportunity to meet and share conversations with tour guides, current and retired school teachers, college professors, law students, and artists. They ate meals and stayed overnight with families in guest houses known as casas particulares, absorbing as much authentic Cuban culture as they could in that brief period.

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For White, experiential educator trips such as the one offered by World Leadership School are opportunities to be exposed to different worldviews and teaching practices, and to discuss with other educators project-based learning, student-driven pedagogies, and the role of transformative experiences in learning. The group gathered each day for an informal learning session where they debriefed, discussed, and processed what they observed and experienced. The group spent six days in Cienfuegos, whose urban historic center is now a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site, and five days in Havana.

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Cuba, a country that has been frozen in time for more than a half-century, provides a unique opportunity for the historian to examine several time periods simultaneously, from Colonialism to the Iron Curtain days to the industrial capitalism that pervaded the 1950s. The final collapse of the Soviet Union similarly cast a pall on Cuba, ushering in an era known as the “Special Period” in the 1990s, with extreme hardships and a government-enforced one-child policy. Relics of the past are set against the backdrop of present day globalization where the government has created Wi-Fi hot spots in parks and public areas so that Cuban citizens can connect, sometimes for the first time, with loved ones abroad. Says White, “It is important to understand Cuba’s history and its relations to the U.S. Since the 1700s, the history of Cuba has been entwined with the history of the U.S. In the late 1800s, the Spanish American War allowed the United States to gain control of Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Philippines, and Guam from Spain. The defeat of the Spanish marked the end of one empire in the Americas and the emergence of another superpower in the region.” U.S. expansionist interests and Cuba’s desire for independence set the course for an uneasy relationship. Choate students have some exposure to Cuban history and its relationship with the U.S. in courses like Contemporary Issues, where topics such as the U.S. embargo on Cuba, Cold War Era politics, and the Cuban diaspora in the U.S. are discussed. In 2013, Choate language students had the opportunity to hear Dr. Carlos Eire, Yale University religious history professor, talk about his escape from Cuba in 1962. Eire is the author of the 2004 National Book Award-winning memoir Waiting for Snow in Havana: Confessions of a Cuban Boy. Eire was one of 14,000 Cuban children airlifted to the U.S. as part of a CIA project code-named Operation Peter Pan. Parents who were fearful that their opposition to Cuba’s revolutionary government would lead to their children being taken from them had the option of sending the children to the U.S. for an education and a chance at a better life. The children were brought in waves to Miami, where some met with family members and others were sent to foster homes across the country. The plan was that the parents would reunite with their children soon after, but regularly scheduled commercial air flights from the U.S. to Cuba were suspended in 1961, and the subsequent Cuban missile crisis in October 1962 dashed any hope for an early reunion. It took Eire’s mother three and a half years to leave Cuba. His father died of heart disease and never reunited with his family.

The stark contrast of the old and the new has a startling effect for the first-time visitor, remarked White. “As you emerge from the Túnel de La Habana (Havana’s Tunnel), you can’t help notice the historic forts on the eastern bank with the ornate Spanish architecture in the Old City.” The tunnel was built during the Batista regime, and is itself a relic of the mid-20th century, but it is also a symbolic gateway linking past and recent histories. Educators on the trip experienced living history as they met with a woman who went to Havana University with the late revolutionary leader Fidel Castro and who later became a college professor. What struck White in these conversations was “the remarkable resilience of the Cuban people. Cuba has benefitted from an excellent educational system with the highest literacy rate in the Caribbean. As we talked to people from a variety of professions, they helped lift the veil on life in Cuba.” White notes that Cuba has faced real challenges since the collapse of the Soviet Union and Venezuela’s pulling back of financial support during its own recent political and economic crisis, yet he notes, “There is an entrepreneurial spirit that is palpable and brimming with energy and excitement. There are many small eateries such as paladares (private restaurants in a home) and the casas particulares (guest houses) which are a hybrid of private enterprise and government-run businesses. The country has been moving slowly toward free-market changes.”

The view standing at the doorway of my father’s house in Havana. Photo: Jessica Cuni

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Jessica Cuni reunited with Ada Gladys Jaén, her late grandmother’s goddaughter and niece, in Havana. Photo: Tom White


For fine arts teacher Jessica Cuni, the journey to Cuba took a more personal turn. “Beyond the pedagogical growth that the program provided, I was also grateful to be traveling to Cuba as a Cuban-American artist,” she says. “Through this lens, I sought to learn firsthand about my heritage, since political realities have veiled true Cuban life for as long as I’ve been alive.” Cuni’s grandmother, Digna Román, was a well-known singer in Havana whose stage name was Chiquitica Jaén. Román left Cuba in the late 1950s with Jessica’s father, Ernest, her only son. As Jessica was growing up, her grandmother lived with them in Brooklyn and would tell her granddaughter stories of the Cuba she left behind. For Jessica, the trip was an opportunity to track down living relatives from her grandmother’s side of the family and to document her visit through photographs. She notes, “Although I am not primarily a photographer, I knew that the immediacy of photography would be a critical tool for me to document my experience.” Her Cuba photos were featured in the Arts Faculty Exhibition last fall in the Paul Mellon Arts Center. Cuni notes, “I found the openness of the Cuban people remarkable. The encounters I had with them led me to think about the connection between overarching social structures and individual relationships. In a place of limited resources, Cubans proudly have each other, and I felt welcomed by them as one of their own.” Through some sleuthing, serendipity, and prayer, Jessica was also able to track down one of her own relatives, Ada Gladys Jaén, her late grandmother’s goddaughter and

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niece. Her Choate colleague Tom White took photographs of their meeting and recorded an oral history for Cuni’s future use in a immersive installation. Cuni is looking forward to sharing what she has learned about Cuba with her father, who grew up in the United States and holds anti-Castro sentiments. Her father, deeply skeptical of the Cuban government, encouraged his daughter to travel to Cuba with a critical eye. She heeded his advice, but she also wanted “to be a sponge absorbing as much as I could of present day Cuban life.” Her portraits range from children at ProDanza, a local ballet school and dance company, to artisans at Callejón de Hamel, home of Afro-Cuban art, to environmental shots like the thunderstorm over the Malecón, the long waterfront sidewalk promenade overlooking the Straits of Florida. The Malecón faces north toward the States, says Cuni, “The ocean that separates us is full of gravitas.” This notion prompted her to write a short poem as the storm rolled in: I do nothing as the tears come. As they are pulled toward the center of the earth, My face grateful to be the terrain they first cross. Like Ernest Hemingway’s novel The Old Man and the Sea, set in a Cuban fishing village, the ocean or sea represents the vast universe against which humanity is pitted and in which the individual must take a chance or be subsumed. From what Cuni observed of today’s Cuban artists, they are taking similar chances. “There is an abundance of indigenous art, music, dance, and theater and a strong sense of community among Cubans, in general.”

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Thunderstorm over the Malecรณn. Photo and poem by Jessica Cuni.

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Outside a paladar in Havana, a private home turned into a restaurant with the assistance of government support – a sign of free-market changes. Photo: Lauren Martini


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Mural details from Callejón de Hamel, a tiny alley that has become a center for Afro-Cuban art and Cuban traditions.


Dr. Lauren Martini, the only science educator on the World Leadership School program, got to experience firsthand the quality of Cuban health care when she came down with an intestinal bug from shower water. She was treated at a local international clinic by two female physicians and was impressed by the well-stocked clinic and thoroughness of the care she received. For decades, Americans have heard about the high quality of health care and life science research that has been conducted in Cuba. Where other countries in Central America and the Caribbean have been ravaged by the Zika epidemic, Cuba has reported, according to a recent NPR news story, only three cases of Zika contracted from local mosquitoes. Researchers credit the island’s extensive health care system and intensive spraying against the insect as reasons for the successful curtailment of the virus. Cuba’s exemplary approach to public health issues is not new. Since the late 1980s, Cuba has been active in the development of vaccines to treat infectious diseases like HIV/AIDS and hepatitis B. Although touring a research hospital was not on the itinerary for this visit, Martini caught a glimpse into how the sciences are taught when she asked the high-schoolage son of her host family to share his class notebook for chemistry. While scientific advances in research laboratories may be innovative, teaching pedagogies in the sciences remain traditional. Says Martini, “Everyone in Cuba is guaranteed an education, shelter, food rations, and universal health care. Equal opportunity in education, however, may come at the expense of novel pedagogy.” She notes that in a society “where a bus driver may make the same wages (or higher) than a doctor or an engineer, one must be purpose-driven to pursue a career in the sciences because there are no apparent monetary benefits.”

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Adds Martini, “The field of public health is not entrepreneurial yet in Cuba, as far as I know. In the States, there are many for-profit pharmaceutical companies developing products for chronic conditions from which they can profit. University research laboratories also are heavily funded by grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. Like many things, research in Cuba is still driven by government interests.” Cuban and U.S. scientists could begin working together on clinical trials only if pharmaceutical companies have more private sector control, says Martini. “It will be interesting to see where Cuba is in five years.” All three educators agree that the opportunity to be at the forefront of this historic transition was invaluable and could be of benefit to our students as well. Dr. Yaser Robles, a member of Choate’s history department, has developed a new course on Colonial Latin America and Cuba’s historical importance in the region, and hopes to pioneer a travel and study program for Choate students in the not-too-distant future. With the recent passing of Fidel Castro and the easing of U.S.-Cuba relations, both countries are now poised to write a new chapter of our shared history. Robles notes, “Choate students and faculty will soon be able to experience Cuba firsthand by interacting with the local people, exploring the arts, learning about the education and health care systems, learning about environmental projects, learning about Afro-religions, practicing their Spanish language, and immersing themselves into everyday life activities. Starting our own Cuba program represents a step towards supporting our school mission of creating socially responsible global citizens.”

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Alumni Gatherings and Celebrations

choate rosemary hall alumni association mission To create, perpetuate, and enhance relationships among Choate Rosemary Hall alumni, current and prospective students, faculty, staff, and friends in order to foster loyalty, interest, and support for the School and for one another, and to build pride, spirit, and community.

OFFICERS Patrick McCurdy ’98 President

New York Sheila Adams ’01 Jason Kasper ’05

Parisa Jaffer ’89 Vice President

Rosemary Hall Volunteer Needed


San Francisco Kevin Kassover ’87 Tara Elwell Henning ’99

Admission Gunther Hamm ’98 Colm Rafferty ’94 Annual Fund David Hang ’94 Communications Michelle Judd Rittler ’98 Kathrin Schwesinger ’02

Washington, D.C. Dan Carucci ’76 Tillie Fowler ’92 Olivia Bee ’10 Beijing Gunther Hamm ’98

Nominating/Prize Chris Hodgson ’78

Hong Kong Sandy Wan ’90 Lambert Lau ’97 Jennifer Yu ’99

Regional Clubs John Smyth ’83 Carolyn Kim ’96

Seoul Ryan Jungwook Hong ’89

Student Relations/ Campus Programming Mike Furgueson ’80 Shantell Richardson ’99 REGIONAL CLUB LEADERSHIP Boston Lovey Oliff ’97 Sarah Strang ’07 Chicago Margaux Harrold ’06 Maria Del Favero ’83 Jacqueline Salamack ’06 Connecticut David Aversa ’91 Katie Vitali Childs ’95 London Ian Chan ’10 Los Angeles Alexa Platt ’95 Wesley Hansen ’98


Thailand Pirapol Sethbhakdi ’85 Isa Chirathivat ’96 ADDITIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBERS Dan Courcey ’86 Executive Director of Development and Alumni Relations Mari Jones Director of Development and Alumni Relations Monica St. James Director of Alumni Relations Leigh Dingwall ’84 Faculty Representative ALUMNI ASSOCIATION PAST PRESIDENTS Susan Barclay ’85 Chris Hodgson ’78 Woody Laikind ’53


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6 7

8 1 Alumni and parents gathered in

Palo Alto at the home of Rick and Mara Frankel ’84 Wallace in September. 2 Sandy Wan ’90 and her family gathered with other alumni families in Hong Kong for a fun and meaningful service day at Soap Cycling to benefit children in need around the world. 3 From left: Cinda (Wall) Ball ’83, Kelsey Wall, Tom Wall ’50, Linda Wall, and T.R. Wall cheer our teams to victory on Deerfield Day.

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4 New York holiday party December 15. 5 Through the generosity of Rob

Goergen ’89, a sold-out crowd of alumni enjoyed playwright Andy Bragen ’89’s Don’t You F**king Say a Word in November. The play was followed by an informative discussion with Andy (right) and Broadway producers Tom Viertel ’59 (left) and Ben Feldman ’86 (center). Tom and Ben graciously gave advice to alumni in the creative arts, law, and communication fields.

6 Alumni gathered at live stream

parties across the country to watch Girls Varsity Soccer and Varsity Football. From left: Robert Martini ’11, Kathleen Morsales ’11, Khari Stephenson ’00, and Tara Elwell Henning ’99 with daughter Alexandra gathered in San Francisco. 7 On November 9, the Choate Association of Korea held an outreach gathering for more than 100 engaged parents and students at the Westin Chosun Hotel in Seoul. Visiting from

Wallingford, Headmaster Dr. Alex Curtis P ’17, ’20, along with Executive Director of Development Dan Courcey ’86, Director of Parent Relations Libby Peard, and Director of Admission Amin Gonzalez. Following the gathering, Mr. Ryan Jungwook Hong ’89, P '19, the chair of the Choate Association of Korea and a Trustee of the School, hosted a welcome dinner for the Choate delegation.

8 Jeff Hoo ’86 and his wife Shirley, and

Tom Wachtell ’46 flank Headmaster Alex Curtis at a gathering in Los Angeles hosted by Trustee Linda Hodge ’73, P ’12. In attendance, Joe and Claudia Hawkins P’19, Development Officer Sarah Welch, Ian Roberston ’59, Geoff Cowan ’60, Tom Neiman ’88 and his wife Roz, Brett Johnson ’88, and Dan Courcey ’86.

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“Choate has opened up the world to me, and it continues to amaze me with what it has to offer.”


Dewey J. Kang ’03


Enduring Choate Connections ALUMNI ASSOCIATION: How has your life been shaped by your

Choate experience? DEWEY KANG: Choate means the world to me. Just this past weekend, while attending my church service, I reminisced about the early mornings when I would sit at the Chapel at Choate for some quiet devotional time alone . . . some things never change, I thought. Choate truly shaped who I am and inspired me to welcome challenges, to dare to dream big, and to be a resource for others. AA: What made you want to volunteer for the School? DK: Choate’s opened up so many opportunities for me, and I am a strong believer that it’s never too early to give back – through mentorship, the Alumni Association, and as an ambassador for prospective Choaties. I’ve been a member of the Volunteer Admissions Network for nearly 15 years, and I’m always excited to meet our next generations of Choaties. Interviews with these students allow me to relive my days at Choate and to share with them the tremendous developments on campus that have happened since I graduated. Staying connected to Choate has truly been a rewarding experience, both personally and professionally, and I would strongly encourage more alumni to take an active part in this truly amazing community.

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AA: What are some tips for networking success that you can share

with others? DK: Utilize your Choate network. The Choate bond is one of the strongest there is, and it always amazes me how Choaties develop an instant rapport as soon as we meet, regardless of whether our paths crossed on campus or not. I strongly encourage everyone to stop by one of your local Choate events (we’re celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Alumni Club of New York!), or better yet come back for reunions. Choate events provide a great opportunity to meet alumni who work in various industries – and to just enjoy a fun time. Reach out to the Alumni Office if you have questions about alumni in specific industries. We have so many talented alumni globally across numerous industries, and the Alumni Office is always willing and excited to connect the alumni. Lastly, reach out to your old friends from Choate. I promise it won’t be as awkward as you’d imagine. Even if you haven’t spoken to your friend for a few years, it will seem like an exciting ‘catching-up’ rather than trying to form a new friendship altogether. AA: In what ways have you engaged with the Choate network? DK: I try to attend as many Choate events as I can. One series in particular is dear to my heart – StartUp//Choate, a career-networking series founded by Miles Spencer ’81. StartUp//Choate is a rare and insightful series that brings together the best and the brightest minds in the startup universe – I’m always excited to hear about the innovative startups that our alumni are involved in! Recently, I reconnected with Omar Itum ’02 and Matthew DeSantis ’03 and will be attending a Business Solutions Summit in the Kingdom of Bhutan in 2017.

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Call for Nominations CHOATE ROSEMARY HALL ALUMNI ASSOCIATION AWARDS With more than 16,000 living alumni, we all know someone from Choate Rosemary Hall who has led a distinguished career, made a significant contribution to our society, or represented the School proudly throughout the world. Help us identify your friends, colleagues, and classmates by nominating someone for a Choate Rosemary Hall Alumni Award!

We are seeking nominations for the following three awards:

Choate alumni and parents at the California Club celebrate the launch of Maria Semple’s new book.

Maria Semple ’82 Book Events On October 5, Choate alumni and parents celebrated the launch of the author's third novel in New York at an event hosted by Parisa Jaffer ’89, Vice President of the Choate Rosemary Hall Alumni Association. With a talk back session led by classmate and author Kate Betts ’82, Maria shared some of her experiences writing her newest novel, which follows on the heels of her 2012 bestselling second novel, Where’d You Go, Bernadette? Maria talked about the lifelong friendships she made at Choate and being awakened to writing and literature in her English classes. At Barnard College she continued her study of literature and read the classics. An Emmy-nominated screenwriter for the TV series Mad About You and Arrested Development, Maria discussed how what she learned about storyboarding and plot devices that drive the narrative forward were critical to her success and development as a novelist. And lastly she advised, "Every book has to invent itself." On October 21, Choate alumni and parents were invited to attend an event in Los Angeles at the California Club to celebrate the launch of Maria's new book. (See Joanna Hershon ’90’s review of Today Will Be Different on p. 65.)

ALUMNI AWARD Created to recognize alumni for outstanding achievement and contributions to their profession or life's work, this honor is presented at School Meeting in April each year. DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD Awarded to an alumnus, alumna, or group in recognition and appreciation of consistent and substantial service to the School, the recipients receive the award on Reunion Weekend. ATHLETICS HALL OF FAME Established to recognize alumni whose efforts, achievements, service, or support have resulted in a meaningful contribution to the athletic reputation of the School, candidates are inducted on Reunion Weekend.

Send nominations to: or via the nomination form on


Be part of it! FEBRUARY & MARCH 2017 Look for Career Networking and StartUp//CHOATE events in a city near you. APRIL 2017 TBD – Alumni Awards TBD – Sixth Form-Alumni Dinner MAY 2017 12–14 Reunion Weekend – Classes ending in 2s and 7s and all post 50th alumni

We Voted for Choate, and so did YOU!

To learn more about our upcoming events, visit WWW.CHOATE.EDU/ALUMNI

The Annual Fund's recent campaign to increase alumni participation was a success, finishing with 1,023 donors, just shy of our 1,200 goal. The campaign, which ran from November 1 and concluded on Deerfield Day, November 12, set a record for the number of gifts received over a 2-week period. Collectively, Vote for Choate participants contributed more than $300,000 to the Annual Fund! Go Choate!

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CLASSNOTES | News from our Alumni

Send Us Your Notes! We welcome your submission of classnotes or photos electronically in a .jpg format to When submitting photos, please make sure the resolution is high enough for print publication – 300 dpi preferred. If your note or photograph does not appear in this issue, it may appear in a subsequent issue, or be posted online to Alumni News on To update your alumni records, email: or contact Christine Bennett at (203) 697-2228.

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’63 From the Archives HEMENWAY HOCKEY RINK

Ice Hockey got a boost with the construction of the Hemenway Hockey Rink in 1953. Its ice pipes meant the team no longer had to hope that the fields deliberately flooded by Gunpowder Creek would freeze enough for the season.

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William McE. Miller, Jr. writes, “I was inducted into the Aviation Hall of Fame in New Jersey in late September. My company, Aereon Corporation, is looking for a buyer who could reduce taxes by deducting our losses, in compliance with IRS regulations. Please help us find that buyer.”

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Lee M. Clegg writes, “My companion, my friend, my partner, my beloved, my life, my wife of 43 years, Elizabeth (Lisa) Pentland Clegg, passed away on October 5, 2016, comfortably, peacefully at our home after a long illness.”

’50 RH Marian Fox Burros, food writer and journalist, received the Wellesley College Alumnae Association Achievement Award on October 14, 2016. This is the highest award that Wellesley bestows and is given to alumnae who have brought honor to themselves and the College through their accomplishments. Burros received the Rosemary Alumnae Award in 1985.

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’51 C Lee Chadeayne translated the series of German historical thrillers that made writer Oliver Pötzsch the first Amazon Publishing author to sell over one million copies. Amazon has made a fiveyear commitment to invest $10 million to increase the number and diversity of translated books it publishes ”Every translator I know is thrilled” is how Lee sums up the reaction to Amazon’s efforts. ’52 C

Art Gibbs writes, “Because of my new love for the sport of pickle ball, I have reconnected with classmate John Sproehnle. He has been an avid pickleballer much longer than me. He plays tournaments and has won numerous gold medals.” John Seid writes, ”If any classmate is in or passing through Brussels, Belgium, I would like to welcome you. My address is 163 Avenue Winston Churchill, bte 12, 1180 Brussels, Belgium.”

’53 C Woody Laikind writes, “Sad news to report, Brad Tips passed away in August. During my five years at school, I knew Brad exceptionally well, and our friendship continued over the years. Brad was TOP Marian Fox Burros ’50, food writer and journalist, third from left,

received the Wellesley College Alumnae Association Achievement Award on Oct. 14, 2016. CENTER Steve (Smokey) Gilford ’57 onboard an ocean freighter, the only survivor of the 1,495 ships built by Henry Kaiser during WWII. BOTTOM Rosemary Hall ’51 classmates gather in Greenwich. From left Diana McGhie, Eunice Hunter, and Joan S. Gilbert. Photo by Peg Rogers.

Captain of the cross country team, and I was last man on the team. It didn’t matter to him. I was always part of the team. He and Tony Furgeson lived in Chapel House, which became a meeting place for us before chapel. Sadly, both he and Tony are gone now. We send our condolences to his wife, Ginny, and their children. I’ll miss talking to Brad.”

’54 C

Peter Reifsnyder writes, “After spending four years in the Navy (mainly in Japan), 25 years in publishing (with Time, Inc. and the Reader’s Digest), I took early retirement and started a company having to do with water damage and mold remediation – certainly a natural and logical career path after publishing – and stayed there for an additional 20 years. We retired to Naples, Fla., in 2013 and live in a gated community – Twin Eagles – with two spectacular golf courses and 600 plus terrific families. We are truly blessed. I had lunch with Arne Carlson (Choate 1953) my mentor into St. Andrew’s Cabinet, and shared stories of Leonard and Dorothy in the kitchen as well as all the other memorable people we were fortunate enough to meet during our wonderful years at Choate. The latch string is always out at our house should any nomadic classmates find themselves in need of a meal, a bed, or a game of golf.”

’54 RH Mary Adams Loomba writes, “We are great grandparents as of October 15, 2016. Our oldest grandson and our granddaughter-in-law had a baby girl, and her name is Jiya Whelan. She is absolutely beautiful and very intelligent, of course!” ’55 C

Peter Elebash writes, “I recently spoke to a group of students at Urban Youth Impact, West Palm Beach, Fla. They are enrolled in a new course of study titled Entrepreneurship Academy. The model for this is the TV program, Shark Tank. When they complete the course in a few months, they will present their business plans to a panel of UYI board members, who will bid on being their partner in their proposed business venture. They can receive up to $10,000 to launch their enterprise. Urban Youth Impact has, for the past 20 years, brought hope and opportunity to the inner cities where there is none.” Roger Vaughan writes that he has three books and a documentary to report. “Closing the Gap is a book I wrote about World Sailing’s Emerging Nations Program, designed to bring young sailors in less advantaged or remote areas up to speed with today’s international performance standards. A hardcover version was given to 1,000 attendees at the World Sailing conference in Barcelona this past November. It will soon be available as a soft cover print-on-demand and an eBook. VICTOR: the Life of Victor Kovalenko, the Medal Maker, is my biography of the head coach of Australia’s Olympic Sailing Team. Victor’s sailing teams have won more Olympic medals than those of any other coach in history. A

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Ukrainian, who coached there for 12 years, Kovalenko was recruited by the Australians in 1996. The last half of the book tracks Victor and his gold medal-winning skipper, Mathew Belcher, London, 2012, as they try to repeat at the Rio Olympics. Aiming for a Spring publication Restoring Arthur, is a film-in-progress about the last of the railroad barons, Arthur Curtiss James. James was one of the 10 wealthiest men in America in the 1930s, and a leading philanthropist of his time. When he died in 1941, he owned 1/7 of all the tracks in America. He had a 125-acre estate in Newport, R.I. that was famous for its Blue Garden and model Swiss farm. James was also a capable yachtsman, Commodore of New York, Ida Lewis, and Seawanhaka Yacht Clubs, and master of two legendary vessels, the schooner Coronet and the bark Aloha. He has remained quite unknown because of his diligent avoidance of celebrity. The film will be followed by a written biography, working title: In Search of Arthur Curtiss James. Other than that, I race radio-controlled Lasers and Star boats for fun.”

’56 C

Chandler Everett writes, “Marsha and I were sorry to miss the 60th Reunion, but had graduating grandchildren. We share time between Aurora, Ohio, just outside Cleveland and John’s Island in Vero Beach, Fla., where I see classmates Pete Prezzano, Sam Beach, Bill Caldwell, and former class member Greg McIntosh from time to time. I recently had the great honor of having a lifetime dream fulfilled when I was chosen to fill the spot on the Class of 1958’s Yale Whiffenpoofs Alumni left vacant by a former member who had Alzheimer’s Disease. I’m also President of a nursing school and an arts foundation Board while serving on two others. Marsha has published her long-awaited novelette on her forebear who was kidnapped by Native Americans in 1827. She still designs mixed-metal high end jewelry. My best wishes go out to all.”

’57 C Steve (Smokey) Gilford writes, “I enjoy being on the Board of the Richmond, CA Museum of History. We own a 450-foot, 10,000-ton ocean going freighter, an armed merchantman, the only survivor of the 1,495 ships built by Henry Kaiser during WWII. Due to my book, Build ’Em by the Mile, Cut ’Em Off by the Yard, about the extraordinary feats of WWII shipbuilding in the Kaiser yards, we are refitting her to go to sea once more. In the Foreword, I mention my appreciation for Mr. Russ Ayres whose students included JFK and Adlai Stevenson. Mr. Ayres’ history courses helped shape my professional life. Several times a week I play music with “Jamnation,” an eclectic group of musicians who play an eclectic repertoire. I specialize in American folk ballads, Irish pub songs and sea chanties that I perform, more or less, skillfully, on the autoharp, Irish whistle, harmonica and 12-string guitar. I had no idea that I would enjoy retirement this much.”

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Forever Grateful to Cadwallader Evans III ’34

A GIFT 70 YEARS IN THE MAKING As a student, Cadwallader Evans III ’34, or “Bro” as he was known on campus, was a member of the Dramatic Club, Debating Council, French Club, The Lit, and The News. When he died tragically in a shipwreck off the coast of Palestine in 1939, his parents wanted to ensure that his legacy would endure, so they created the Cadwallader Evans III ’34 Memorial Scholarship Fund. They also donated his journal from 1938–39 to the Andrew Mellon Library hoping that “It might be of interest to have the student who received this scholarship know something of the boy in whose memory it was established.” The first student awarded the scholarship was Gilbert Lieb ’47. Throughout his life, Gilbert remained committed to his alma mater, always grateful for the financial assistance that allowed him to attend Choate. Gilbert passed away in 1987 and his wife, Dorothy, passed away in 2016. Through their estate, Choate received the remainder of the couple’s IRA along with a request for the money to be added to the Cadwallader Evans Scholarship so future students would share the same life-changing experiences that both Cadwallader and Gilbert had. Today the Cadwallader Evans III ’34 Memorial Scholarship is held by a fifth former from Cambridge, Massachusetts. In expressing her gratitude, she writes, “This scholarship has given me so much more than five classes each term and meals in the dining hall. It has helped me build friendships, confidence, and happiness, and learn new perspectives. I will be forever grateful.” The Cadwallader Evans III ’34 Memorial Scholarship has been awarded to students for the past 70 years. Your thoughtful gift can benefit students for generations to come.

What will your legacy be? For more information, please contact Barry Tomlinson at (203) 697-2071 or

This book is to be read each year by the student receiving the scholarship in Cadwallader Evans’ memory.

The William Gardner & Mary Atwater Choate Society, named for the founders of both Rosemary Hall and The Choate School, honor individuals who have remembered the School in their estate plans. With more than 500 members, the Choate Society represents a substantial investment in future generations.

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Verdant Kitchen


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Co-founder Howard Morrison Howard Morrison was the only student from Savannah, Ga., in the Choate Class of 1961. He would have preferred staying home in Savannah to going north to Wallingford, but he made the “mistake” of doing well in summer school in 1957, and the rest is history. Howard left behind Lebanon Plantation – his “family farm,” as he calls it – an 18th century grant of land from King George II. The 1,000-plus-acre plantation came into the family when his grandfather, Mills Lane, acquired it in 1916. Almost 60 years after leaving Savannah, Howard is back home, and living on the plantation full-time. Along with an Aussie business partner, Howard runs Verdant Kitchen – an award-winning organic gourmet spice business that promises to be his most successful venture yet. Verdant grows USDA-certified turmeric, ginger, and galangal (Thai ginger), then turns them into a wide, tasty and healthy menu of syrups, honeys, snaps and snacks. VK also produces ginger teas and ales or beer (one with mint and the other with turmeric). Along the way Howard has become a crusader for the health benefits (anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties) claimed for his product line. He also keeps his eye on the bigger picture, imagining VK’s impact on the regional economy. As he explains: “I’m interested in turning our turmeric and ginger spices into great products and building quality regional brands that can become national.” The Bulletin spoke recently with Howard about life at Lebanon Plantation, plans for Verdant Kitchen, and his relationship with Choate.

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BULLETIN: Savannah has been an agricultural center for nearly

300 years. Mulberries, olives, indigo, pecans, cotton, rice, have done well at Lebanon. But it’s ginger, the new heart of Verdant Kitchen, that’s the star now. And ginger was grown in the sandy loam of coastal Georgia as early as 1736. What took so long to get back to your roots, so to speak? MORRISON: Years ago, I told my grandmother, who owned Lebanon at the time, that when I came back from Choate on vacations, I considered Lebanon “home.” It was the one place on the face of the earth where I felt safe, content and happy. So I’d always planned to return to these emotional roots. Although my grandfather grew Satsuma oranges, raised Carnation cows, and brought in deer from the American West along with many other experimental crops, I never thought I would be growing ancient root crops, today. BULLETIN: Do you see yourself as an evangelist for organic spices

like ginger and turmeric, or are you a tireless entrepreneur with an experienced partner? MORRISON: I love to be surrounded by entrepreneurs, because they are happy, positive people who know they will not fail. My banking career in Atlanta was primarily focused on helping entrepreneurs and their small technology companies get up and running, and helping to plant the seeds of Atlanta’s booming high tech community. When I retired after the Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta in 1996, I returned to Savannah with the goal of developing different kinds of technology-related businesses here, and encouraging entrepreneurs. My experienced partner in Verdant Kitchen, who is from Australia, does all the heavy lifting. We started with an alternative energy consulting business that included fuel from trees, and evolved into organic root crops. We thought that to be unique, get better prices and margins, we needed to be organic. So I am anything but an organic evangelist.

MORRISON: Choate really was a life-building experience, but my passion today is with many educational initiatives and in educating the whole person from early childhood education through to research universities like Georgia Tech. Since we will have growing needs at Verdant Kitchen we would certainly welcome interns who might become full-time employees in the future. It would give them a quick and complete MBA because they would experience every aspect of a business. I would welcome the opportunity to discuss with Choate students our trials and tribulations as well as entrepreneurship generally. BULLETIN: You served for many years on the Georgia Department

for Economic Development. Classmate Dave Phillips ’61 was similarly involved in his home state of North Carolina. Did you two ever compete for business or collaborate? Any other Choaties you stay in touch with? MORRISON: Although I have not seen Dave Phillips, Georgia and North Carolina clearly compete for the “businesses of the future,” as tobacco and textiles have departed the region. Charlotte and the Research Triangle Park are great economic engines for North Carolina as is primarily the metropolitan Atlanta area in Georgia. I see Dolph Orthwein socially in Atlanta from time to time. More recently I have caught up with Terry Hannock, who lives just across the Savannah River in Bluffton, South Carolina, and have visited with Russ Ayres, Dick Hull, and Clip Kniffin over the last year. BULLETIN: What’s next at Verdant Kitchen? MORRISON: We would like to do good while doing well, which

means continuing to focus on the wellness side of the business. Ginger and turmeric truly are superfoods. As my partner likes to say: “There’s nothing like having someone come up to you and say: ‘Your products have made a difference in my life.’ There’s no feeling as good as that.”

BULLETIN: Ginger lovers look increasingly to country of origin as

BULLETIN: When Bulletin readers want more information on

a measure of product quality and desirability. Has U.S. production achieved that status yet? Where does Verdant Kitchen stand on the quality scale? MORRISON: The first known growing of ginger 7,000 years ago was along the southwest coast of India. After World War II, Australia became the ginger capital of the world. However, our original seed roots for ginger, turmeric, and galangal came from Hawaii. Because we wanted the very best quality, we experimented with a variety of seed roots from India, China, Peru, Jamaica, and other places around the world. There is very little organic ginger and turmeric grown commercially in the continental United States today. So we believe we’re at the very top of the quality scale.

Verdant Kitchen, or want to order products from you, what should they do? MORRRISON: Go to our website: We are always updating it to expand our offerings. You can order on line, or find us on Amazon. VK products are also in a growing number of gourmet specialty shops nationally. BULLETIN: You were featured on Oprah. How did that go? MORRISON: When Oprah included our ginger syrup and ginger-

infused honey in a holiday gift pack segment of her show, sales took off. People continue to be amazed at how delicious and healthy our products really are. We’d love for all Choate alums to try us, share us with friends and family, and then find a few new retail outlets for us.

BULLETIN: Metrics for Verdant Kitchen: revenues and rate of growth. MORRISON: All of our metrics are moving targets, but we have

basically been doubling every year. BULLETIN: You wrote in our 50th Reunion essay book that “Four

years at Choate turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to me.” Are you involved in School now? Any alums on your staff? Would you consider a Choate intern? Would you come back to campus to speak to students involved in the Kohler Environmental Center’s Sustainable Food Project?

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seth hoyt ’61 Seth Hoyt ’61 has sampled the turmeric-coated ginger at his local co-op, and says, “Verdant Kitchen has rewritten the book on healthy snacking." ”Howard has come a long way since we sat next to each other in Mr. Gutterson's 4th Form English class!"

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Bob Buck writes, “For the past 8 years, I have been pleased to participate in a new initiative from the Department of Defense called “Inclusive Recreation for Wounded Warriors.” The four-day program was developed by Penn State University to educate and assist Morale, Welfare & Recreation (MWR) managers at our military installations at home and abroad bring sports and leisure activities to our Wounded Warriors dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Spinal Cord Injury & Amputation. I presented a personal perspective as a veteran and amputee and promoted the benefits of golf as a perfect sport for our wounded warriors. The program finished last January and reached over 960 MWR Managers. Congratulations to our Undefeated Football Team.” Sam Turner writes, “My wife, Hether Connor Turner RH ’59 died at home in Nantucket, Mass., on September 30, 2016 after a battle with cancer.”

’60 RH Sterett-Gittings Kelsey writes, “I am still a clay pusher and working full time. I just love this stuff. My son just had his 50th birthday! Both children are artists. Guess the apples and the trees adage is true! Ever so grateful for my Rosemary Hall education!” Sassy Sailor Watters writes, “My dear husband of 21 years died this October. He was an amazing man and I was honored to be with him as long as I was.”

’61 C

Dick Hull writes, “My wife and I spent the last weekend of October visiting Bill Mohan and his wife, Beth, in their new cottage at Heron Point retirement community in Chestertown, Md. The visit included three hours aboard a tall ship which we sailed partway up the Chester River; a grand tour of the area; and many excellent meals at local restaurants and Heron Point. The Mohans enjoy their surroundings very much and are active in the community. Beth’s brother and his wife live there also.”

’62 C John Wilkes writes, “I am currently working on a short 55th Reunion DVD to send to the classmates of ’62, which will include some of our memories from 1958 to 1962. If there are any classmates who have memories (photos, articles, memories, etc.) that they would like me to include in the DVD, please send them to me at” ’63 RH Margo Heun Bradford and her sister had a marvelous river cruise, from Amsterdam to Budapest last fall. She is now happily settling in to her new home in Kittery, Maine. Margo Melton Nutt has been there for several visits. When not visiting Maine, Margo keeps busy with volunteer work for the Norwich Public Library and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Upper Valley, and taking adult ed courses through Dartmouth. Sandy Hawxhurst Conkin keeps in touch with Mike Roy and Doreen Gardner, and hopes that they can all get together next summer. Donna Dickenson has finished yet another book. She and Chris had a recent trip to South Africa, “which was scenically stunning and socially rather depressing, with its enormous inequalities of income and ongoing racial divide.” Her son Anders’ play has now opened at the Swan Theater in Stratford-uponAvon. She reckons she’s the only living mother of a Stratford playwright! Doreen McClennan Gardner writes: “Michael and I saw our daughter and her family in the Bay Area (CA) during the holidays. This year included a number of short trips within California to places that were new to us. In 2017, we’ll be a little more adventurous!” Doreen’s sister, Christine, a.k.a. “Ki” (RH ’65) visited them in July and August. Betsy Stiefvater O’Hara writes, “Many thanks for the nice picture and coverage in the beautiful alumni magazine. I also visited two other Rosemarians last summer who were not mentioned – my classmate Olivia van Melle Kamp, we stayed with her for a few days in Millbrook, and also with my sister Susan O’Hara ’65, in Merrimac, Mass. Great


visits. We are planning to move to Portugal as soon as our house in Cornwall sells. Sandy Little Beard visited Cornwall in September, but unfortunately, we were out of the country at the time.” Judy Shaw Richardson writes that she has been kept very busy with Hawthorn Hollow, an educational nature preserve in Kenosha, Wisconsin. She keeps limber and flexible through two dance classes a week with her daughter and granddaughter. Mike Sherry Roy and her husband moved to West Palm Beach, Florida after 37 years in Texas! Her email stays the same: Cindy Skiff Shealor and her husband visited Susan (Sukey) Heyn Billipp ’64 and her husband in September at the Colorado Cabin Adventures in Grand Lake that the Billippses own. Also in September, Alice Chaffee Freeman, Lorna Tighe DeZengotita, Vicki Brooks and Chris Murray McKee got together for lunch. Chris and Lorna had not seen each other since graduation!

’63 C John Sicher writes, “I sold my business, Beverage Digest, in the second half of 2015. I thought retirement would allow me much free time, but not so. I am doing pro bono work with my wife, Robin, in the area of substance misuse prevention and working to help those who suffer from substance misuse get a second chance. I’m also doing some consulting in the beverage industry. All in all, a busy – but less frenetic – life and a happy time.” ’64 C John Angell Grant writes, “I currently live in Palo Alto. I enjoyed the Wallingford reunion a couple of years back. I just wanted to let my classmates know that my serialized novel, A Deadly Secret, about murder in Palo Alto is going strong. Silicon Valley people can check it out each day in the Palo Alto Daily Post, or others can read episodes online here:” Lach Reed is happily retired and living in Napa, California. He writes, “Travel, golf, skiing, and family keep me busy, as well as my involvement on the board of Music in the Vineyards, a non-profit organization that supports Chamber Music concerts in vineyards every August. Come visit!”

Jonathan M. Samet, M.D., M.S., received the 2016 Fries Prize for his pioneering research and decades of advocacy on the negative impacts of air pollution on health …“Jonathan’s research and policy leadership have directly contributed to the avoidance of hundreds of thousands of premature deaths and hospitalizations.” –DR. SAMET HOLDS THE FLORA L. THORNTON CHAIR OF PREVENTIVE MEDICINE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA KECK SCHOOL OF MEDICINE

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Old friends, Noel Hynd ’66, Adam Shaw ’67, and Patricia White Hynd ’88 enjoyed catching up in California.

’65 C Peter Schaeffer writes, “Please assure all my friends at Choate that I am in fine form and still feel withdrawal seven years after leaving Board of Trustees (1990-2009).” ’66 C

David Holmes writes, “Back in May at our 50th Reunion, I had an interesting thought while our Reunion photo was being taken on the Hill House steps. I was watching the current Choate students (2016, 2017, etc.) walking by. Taking a helicopter view of life, as I am wont to do, I imagined back to 1966 when we were walking by a similar 50th Reunion photo. When I realized that we were looking at the Class of 1916, I was struck by the scope our lives have had over 100 years of knowledge and experience. 1916! The U.S. hadn’t entered WWI and there was no Federal Income Tax. It was pre-prohibition and women couldn’t vote. We have been truly blessed with a full and rich lifetime. I am certain that few, if any of us, still reside in the home our parents had while we were attending Choate. But the Hill House steps were a constant over all those years.”

’67 C

Dick Terry writes, “Taking ballet & sculpture lessons. Have found out how to reverse the aging process. Be well!”

’68 C Jack Crews writes, “Meg and I are spending most of our time in Sea Island, Ga., where I am President of the Property Owners Association, though we always enjoy getting back to Richmond. Actually, I am not sure in which of the two cities Meg spends most of her time, as she is constantly traveling to bridge tournaments around the Southeast. Our daughter, Margaret, lives in Atlanta with her husband, Sam, and their two children. Sam runs the Georgia operation for LYFT. Our son, John, lives in Arlington, Va., with his wife Jean. Thankfully, he keeps his job on the Hill as a result of Senator Toomey winning a very close race.”

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Alfred Watts ’87 (left) was honored by the New Haven Chapter of Links, Inc., for his work with youth through Path of Success, the leadership organization he founded. Pictured here with Tom Ficklin ’67.

1970s ’70 C Jim Berrien writes, “Mary Jane and I married our daughter Reid in Aspen on September 24, 2016. Worthy Johnson and his whole family joined us. Daughter #2, Lacey, works for a PR firm in Boston. We also see Charlie Miner on the golf course. My company, Ahl, Berrien & Partners, is doing lots of executive recruiting work in higher education, nonprofit, and media. My partner Darcy Chappel is Choate 1980. Life is good. I use Tom Yankus’ red letter words all the time.” ’72 C John J. Beardsworth, Jr. was featured in the Richmond-Times Dispatch last October. He is a partner at Hunton & Williams LLP, head of the business practice; and chairman of the American Bar Association’s Infrastructure and Regulated Industries Section. He told the Times-Dispatch, “My best business decision was to take the Hunton energy practice international, with a focus on emerging markets and Africa in particular. Beginning in the early 1990s, we were probably the first U.S. law firm to represent African governments on billion-dollar energy projects, and that first mover status has continued to benefit us.” Real estate and historic preservation are hobbies of John’s. Fred Clowney is living a quiet life in Grand Rapids, Mich., running a small manufacturing business ( He writes, “Children are employed, health is good and still trying to achieve equilibrium.” Byron Haskins writes, “In addition to retiring from government service this year, I have reinstated my license to practice psychology in Michigan. Also, I have had three of my poems published in journals recently. Last year I had “Senseless Love” published in the Cedar Gallery, of the Netherlands ( This year, “The Goodness of Winter” will appear in Issue 10 of Three Drops Press / Three Drops from a Cauldron,

John J. Beardsworth, Jr. ’72 is a partner at Hunton & Williams LLP, Richmond, Va., and head of the business practice. He is also chairman of the American Bar Association’s Infrastructure and Regulated Industries Section.

England, and in the USA, “Charity Knows” will appear in Issue 9 - Pop Culture of The Yellow Chair Review (, both in December 2016.” Greg Knauer writes, “As a Green Party candidate from Chino Valley, Arizona, I did not win a seat in the State House. These days my name is Haryaksha Gregor Knauer, the spiritual epithet bestowed on me by Alo Devi of the Sri Chinmoy Centre. On YouTube, I’ve started a series of 11-second diaristic episodes. While I was at Choate Rosemary, facts of the day were My Lai and the SST.” Steve Monroe joined John Gelb and Steve Bogardus at a rooftop cocktail party in NYC in October; a good time was had by all. He writes, “See you at the 45th Reunion in May.”

’73 C

Edwin Barton, Professor of English and Department Chair, at Bakersfield College in Calif., plans to retire in May after more than 35 years at his current institution, Vanderbilt University, and California State University. He and his wife, Glenda, and their daughter Caroline will be moving full time to their summer home in Cambria, California, where Ed looks forward to reading, writing, drinking wine, and walking his dog, Jenny, on the beach. Many thanks to those who enabled him to watch (via live streaming) Choate’s football team defeat Deerfield to complete yet another undefeated regular season. John T. Kirby has been awarded a senior fellowship for the 2016–2017 academic year in the University of Miami’s Center for the Humanities. He is devoting this fellowship period to an extensive study of what he calls ”comparative classics” – ideas of classics and the classical, across several ancient cultures – and looking for the connections as well as the disconnects among these cultures. The data to be examined include texts, cultural practices, and material culture from the ancient Mediterranean world, ancient Indic cultures, and ancient China.

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Jamie Lee Curtis

A Little Off, Pigtails and All “It is difficult to remember what Choate Rosemary Hall was like before Jamie Lee Curtis took it by storm this fall.” Not a bad first line for a letter of recommendation, and this one, written on behalf of Jamie Lee Curtis ’76, seems prescient. Few have taken so many fields by storm. She is a Golden Globewinning actress, starring in A Fish Called Wanda, True Lies, Halloween and its sequels, and the current TV series Scream Queens, among many other credits. She works tirelessly as an activist, promoting AIDS research and awareness, addiction recovery, and, most recently, Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid. She’s even an inventor, having patented a compartmental diaper that holds its own wipes. Perhaps Curtis’s favorite role, though, is children’s book author. Over 20-odd years and through 11 books, she has created a uniquely screwball vision of the sorrows and joys of childhood.

Her latest book, This Is Me, published in September, celebrates the American melting pot, as well as the specific totems of heritage we all carry. (See review, page 64.) As an author, Curtis treats childhood with sensitivity and honesty, careful to show that even though kids and adults both make mistakes, they never stop loving each other. A strong current of emotional intelligence runs through her stories, and, as Curtis wrote in a recent email, the tales spring from her heart as much as her mind. “There’s been no premeditation,” she said. “I am not an intellectual and don’t go into any of this with an intellectual lens. There isn’t some big master plan to any of this work. The books pop into my head almost completely formed.” The books of her childhood, Curtis once told PBS’s Tavis Smiley, were “these sort of cherubic white people books. All the little kids had blonde hair and perfect little outfits and that’s just not the way I look at the world. I didn’t feel that way as a child. I felt like my pigtails were never even. Like I remember tugging on them trying to get them even and could never get them even.” Her own books’ embrace of such endearing dishevelment, Curtis acknowledges, reveals itself most vividly through Laura Cornell’s madcap illustrations. “There’s usually at least one visual that I have in my head that I want to try to get achieved,” Curtis wrote in her email. “Mostly, I allow her brilliant creative vision.” As Curtis told Smiley, “The way she illustrates is I think the way the world is, which is askew. Nothing matches, everybody’s a little off, and I love what she does.” Curtis, the daughter of actors Janet Leigh and Tony Curtis, readily admits that she felt a little off when she first arrived at Choate Rosemary Hall: a new senior, away from her Southern California home for the first time. “My mother was doing a play in New York during my senior year of high school,” she said. “I decided to join her on the East Coast, which is why I ended up at Choate. My mother’s play closed in October so I ended up alone on the East Coast for the rest of the year.” While she struggled to settle into her academic career (“I was not a great student”), she coped with her homesickness – and quickly made a name for herself on campus – by organizing an exuberant set of festivities, including a male-only homecoming queen contest, for Deerfield Day, efforts that won her a letter from Principal Charles Dey praising her “initiative and contagious enthusiasm.” “Boarding school is both a time for academic enrichment and personal growth. My time at Choate was much more about personal growth,” Curtis says now. (Not long ago, she tweeted a photo of an Illinois driver’s license: “Look what I found. 1st fake ID when I attended Choate Rosemary Hall. Sent away 4 it. Amazed it worked.”) As she noted in her acceptance speech for the 1996 Alumnae Award, “The reason I keep talking about being an underachiever is because I was still supported; I was still nurtured; I was still encouraged by every member of the faculty I came in contact with.” Curtis, who married the actor and director Christopher Guest in 1984, now nurtures her own family (her daughter, Annie, 29, and son, Thomas, 20), along with the innumerable children who have grown up being amused, challenged, and validated by her books. (A twelfth, Me, My Selfie and I, will be published in 2018; Curtis describes it as “an unexpected think piece on this obsession that we all have, told from the point of view of a newly obsessed mother.”) Curtis has now been writing long enough to cultivate more than one generation as her audience. “I often meet adults who first liked this work when they were young,” she said. “That, obviously, is gratifying. It was not my intention ever to write books for children. It just happened. That there is an ongoing relationship to them through readers and then passing it onto their own children is a lovely idea.” andrea thompson Andrea Thompson is the co-author, with Jacob Lief, of the book I Am Because You Are.

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“Thank you, Choate, for the wealth of opportunities and the caring and sharing you imbued in our characters. Our class may be older than most ‘decision makers’ today, but we have a plethora of vision to share with the world. Don’t be shy about it. Be proud!” – DAVID HOLMES

’66 ’75 RH Marie Bartlett’s picture book, Poppy’s Purpose – based on the true story of a PATH train car – was released in print September 1, 2016. She writes, ”This children’s picture book is based on a PATH train car that survived the 2001 collapse of the World Trade Center. When the towers collapsed, the train car who I named Poppy was buried under the rubble- but safe. Still, by the time she opened her doors to people again, her purpose had changed. Now instead of moving people, Poppy gives them a place to pause and appreciate how, even in really hard times, they can find goodness.” In the words of one reviewer, ”I would have thought it impossible to tell the story of 9/11 to children without giving them nightmares. But the author somehow managed to do this so gently that the story is totally appropriate for young children.” The story itself focuses on perseverance, hope, courage and kindness, and is appropriate for children ages 4 and up. Marie was commissioned by Shore Line Trolley Museum in East Haven, Conn., to write and illustrate this book because ”Poppy” now resides at their museum. On September 11, 2016 there was a dedication of the car which was widely covered in the press.

John Steinbreder ’74 and classmate Peter Vogt together at the Misquamicut Club in Watch Hill, Rhode Island, last summer. “Country club cowboys,” as Peter says. “A classic!”

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’76 C

David Z. Beecher writes, “Had a great Deerfield Day on campus. I was able to see Peter Hoffman ’74, Tom Wall ’76, Josh Wall ’77, Duby McDowell ’78, and to celebrate all of the Choate wins!” Rod Fletcher writes, “I got to see Tom Yankus this summer, a real treat and lots of fun to catch up on lots of old volleyball stories. Sadly, almost all stories are old stories at my age now. Highlight for me was a chance to have my son Jack, a 17-year-old high school senior and volleyball player, talk volleyball with TY the coach who got me and so many other Choate boys started on playing volleyball. I went on to play in college and coach and I am now the coach for our local high school boys team which happily includes my son Jack. I still apply lots of things that I learned from TY – including, make the teaching and learning fun and the boys will want to play, and it still works and will always work.”

’76 RH Leslie Atkinson writes, “I have been living in Valencia, Spain for 36 years and currently work in a large fertility clinic as coordinator of clinical research. I try to use as much free time as possible for my favorite hobby and passion - singing - and of course

1976 Choate alums in Seattle, from left, Mike Millard, Chris Mason, and Doug Buck ’75. ”Life’s good.”

the travel itch has never been cured! I grab every opportunity to do weekend travel. My two children live in New York: Alexandra (27) as a documentary filmmaker and Daniel (22) as a neuroscience, economics and pre-med student at NYU. They’re really enjoying living in the U.S. and I enjoy visiting them in the Big Apple frequently. I’d love to meet up with friends from our CRH days and if any of you come to Spain, please contact me. It would really be fun to catch up! Valencia is a great city to visit also!”

’79 Suzanne Donaldson writes, “My husband, Steve Laird, and I made the big move across country as I recently became the Senior Director of Global Production for Nike. Steve and I took three weeks off to drive out west with our two dogs and were lucky enough to be invited to a marvelous dinner by Julie Buono Geddes and Pete Geddes ’80 in Bozeman, Mont.”

Dominique Callimanopulos ’76 won a GOLD World Responsible Tourism Award in London recently for her company’s Buy a Trip, Give a Trip platform. It is the first one-for-one program in the travel industry. For every trip booked with Elevate Destinations, an excursion for local youth is sponsored.

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’76 Winning Peace and Praise Michael A. Lerner

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OVER LUNCH, LOS ANGELES journalist and screenwriter Michael A. Lerner ’76

and writer Kevin A. Mardesich ’87 discussed the nature of war, dealing with artistic struggle, and how a Choate teacher can point a student in the right direction and, really, save his life. For many years, Michael Lerner reported on hot spots. His beat included the 1983 bombing of the U.S. base in Lebanon, South Africa’s fall of apartheid, Gaddafi’s Libya, and 2002’s War on Afghanistan. But it is Michael’s script for the 2015 Beach Boys film Love & Mercy that earns him the most attention these days. As a screenwriter, Michael weaves a story that juxtaposes the band’s hard-hitting losses with its tender melodic songs. Michael uncovers the pillars holding up composer Brian Wilson’s mental health and creative genius; these “pillars” collapsed after misdiagnosed medication, the trauma of childhood beatings, and the band’s creative imploding. The film received a rare 91 percent score on the website Rotten Tomatoes, an aggregator of online reviews. Top critics endorsed Love & Mercy, awarding it the prized “certified fresh” rating. Talking with Michael, one begins to understand the hard work that goes into winning praise, a kind of peace that comes after a long artistic struggle. Peace comes in all shapes and sizes. It comes in the form of food delivery to starving refugees in war-torn Afghanistan. Peace arrives at the end of Greek tragedies as “catharsis,” which is defined as the purging of pain. Michael’s dad, acclaimed librettist Alan Lerner ’36 of Lerner & Loewe (My Fair Lady, Camelot) fame, also knew triumph after struggle. He would toil over a song’s single line – a few words – for three weeks. Michael’s story, a three-act drama, begins at Choate.

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1980s ’80

Act I. In Sophocles’ “Antigone,” the blind soothsayer offers the protagonist a lifealtering lesson … Michael reflects on his most influential teacher at Choate: “Ed Maddox was one of those people in my life who definitely pointed me in a direction I should go as opposed to the direction I was going … The more you know about what your demons are, the more you’re aware of your interactions and see the effects of them. I think that’s where you can grow and learn ... The subconscious plays into finding [one’s] voice.” Michael heard Maddox’s lesson loud and clear. He pushed himself even harder over the next four years, graduating from Harvard magna cum laude with a degree in history and literature. Act II. Feeling morally bankrupt after years of writing in a commercial Hollywood voice, Michael returns to journalism. In 2002, The Los Angeles Times hires him to profile Afghan aid worker Suraya Sadeed, who delivers food to refugees as B-52s drop bombs overhead … After writing this eye-opening article, Michael felt his journey was not done in Los Angeles. After a decade navigating shrapnel and potholes, both in war and in his admittedly weak commercial scripts, he moved back to New York and to journalism, only to receive a call from producer Ludi Boeken, who had ties with the British Film Council. They funded Michael’s Beirut story, 2004’s Deadlines. Michael also directed the film. It won the prestigious Santa Barbara International Film Festival award. Michael took a deep breath and began training for his third act. Act III. Michael hits his stride as a screenwriter … Twelve years later, at age 57, Michael is a veteran writer. Over his career, he has penned countless news articles for Newsweek, The Los Angeles Times, and other media outlets. He has also written the screenplays for Deadlines; August Eighth, the Russian war film distributed by Fox; Love & Mercy, and more. He has more human-dramas in active development. reports that John Malkovich will star in Michael’s TV series Humboldt, portraying the Northern California hippie-county’s marijuana kingpin. The New York Times reports Focus Features has hired Michael to adapt the true-life book. It portrays the $7.4 million 1993 Brinks truck robbery and its three suspects – an ex-IRA prisoner, a retired police officer, and a Roman Catholic priest who maintains his innocence. Yet Michael confesses he has turned a corner with his screenwriting “pretty recently.” He adds, “I feel like I finally have an intuitive sense of structure.”

John Duncan and his son Jack, age 19, raced in the Pacific Cup from San Francisco to Oahu last Summer. He is back in Mill Valley with Heather and Cole, age 17, working as an outside general counsel for a handful of startups and looking for the next adventure. Michael Lewyn has returned to New York City and to his old job teaching at Touro Law Center. He has published numerous scholarly articles and blogs at and about the intersection of law and urban planning. His new book, Government Intervention and Suburban Sprawl, published by Palgrave Macmillan, comes out in early 2017. Robert Margolis is running a successful Manhattan restaurant, The Simone, which opened in 2014. He got an enviable three stars from The New York Times.


Katherine Burdge writes, “I just had a great ’reunion’ with Marty Winnick Blue who flew in to Tampa for a work event. We are holding each other to promises to see each other more often! I still see Brad Welch ’79 at tennis events and around town, and he is doing great. I am working part-time for a real estate investment company which is filling the void of kids leaving home. My youngest is a freshman at Stanford and rowing on men’s crew. My oldest just graduated from there and is off to Boulder to do environmental consulting and more bike racing. I am looking forward to visiting Choate again with my mom Susan Aldrich Huberth RH ’62.” Kurt Willett made his return to the main stage of the Paul Mellon Arts Center as featured soloist in the Wallingford Symphony Orchestra’s holiday concert in December singing selections from Handel’s “Messiah” and other Christmas favorites under the baton of Maestro Phil Ventre. He also enjoyed spending time on campus in November and December at the request of Alysoun Kegel, Choate Director of Choral Activities, coaching the talented student cast of Henry Purcell’s opera Dido & Aeneas in preparation for performances on January 21 & 22.

kevin august mardesich ’87 Kevin August Mardesich ’87 teaches writing at UCLA Extension and runs, a communications practice specializing in writing. His clients include Oscar and Emmy winners, networks, and various industry leaders.

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John Duncan ’80 (far right) and his son, Jack Duncan, Tufts ’19, (far left) raced in the Pacific Cup from San Francisco to Oahu last summer on the Express 37 “Elan" with three other crew members.

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“Shared a wonderful final season of Choate Girls Varsity Soccer with my daughter Morgan ’17. You expect excellence in curriculum, staff, and facilities. What often humbled me was the quality of character on campus and students appreciating all the moments.” –ED HARNEY






5 1 Patrick T. Clendenen ’84 has joined Boston law firm Davis, Malm

& D’Agostine, P.C. as a shareholder. 2 Catherine Meoni Ringling ’86 is enjoying coaching girls volleyball at her daughter’s school, Blessed Sacrament Huguenot Catholic School in Virginia. Pictured here at Girls’ Volleyball Senior Night. 3 From left, Miles Spencer ’81, Co-founder of the Innovadores Foundation, U.S. Ambassador to Cuba, Jeffrey DeLaurentis, and John Caulfield, Chief of Mission of the U.S. Interests in Havana, Cuba.

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’82 Anna Vereen Dowden reports that she recently married Ronny Mobley. ”After Ronny and I married, I stayed in Orlando and allowed my daughter to graduate last spring before moving to Alabama. We moved to Dothan in June and my daughter Ellie is now a freshman at Auburn. In Orlando, I was previously a case manager at Newsome Melton Law Firm which specializes in product liability. I hope to get into administration in one of the colleges/community colleges in the area. I also have a son Will, who graduated from UGA and is employed in Atlanta.” Ed Harney writes, “Shared a wonderful final season of Choate Girls Varsity Soccer with my daughter Morgan ’17. Team finished 16-2-1 reaching the New England Prep Semifinals. Nothing better than absorbing diverse Choate sports on a crisp, sunny fall day in CT. Chapter 2 of the Harney family at Choate coming to a close (daughter Samantha ’15 at Northwestern). You expect excellence in curriculum, staff, and facilities. What often humbled me was the quality of character on campus and students appreciating all the moments. My wife Kathy and I now live in London, and greatly enjoying work and exploration.” Jennifer Paxton is director of the University Honors Program at the Catholic University of America, where she also teaches medieval history. She lives in Bethesda with her husband and their two younger sons; the third is a senior at Cornell. Miles Spencer completed the Havana “Marabana” in a time of 4:06, which was a personal best by over 28 minutes. He was in Cuba on behalf of the Innovadores Foundation, raising funds for Carmen & Ray’s Kids, meeting with investors, and briefing Ambassador Jeffrey DeLaurentis on projects with local entrepreneurs.

6 4 Anna Vereen Dowden ’82 married Ronny Mobley. The couple

reside in Dothan, Ala. 5 Cammie Phillips Hunt ’83 completed Ironman Maryland on

October 1, (on a shortened 126.2 mile course, parts of the run course experienced tidal surge!). 6 1983 Choate alums John Smyth, Matt Hall, Peter Rickert, and Jim Conroy enjoyed Deerfield Day at Choate.

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What a remarkable place to be… ’84

Patrick T. Clendenen joined Boston law firm Davis, Malm & D’Agostine, P.C. Patrick practices in the Litigation and Business Law areas. President Paul L. Feldman said, “Pat has an established national reputation in the business community as an outstanding trial attorney.” As a trial lawyer, he is experienced in business and fiduciary disputes as well as intellectual property litigation. In addition, he is actively involved in the American Bar Association, serving as Secretary of the Business Law Section and as Immediate Past Chair of the Business and Corporate Litigation Committee. Before joining Davis Malm, Patrick was a partner at Sally & Fitch LLP and Nelson Mullins. George Stein writes, “In June, I became the proud owner of Meadowbrook Country Day Camp, a private summer day camp in Long Valley N.J. We serve children ages 3-15 for 8 weeks each summer. We also created a program called ’Heart and Soul‘, a one week scholarship camp for inner city kids from Newark N.J.”

’85 Katie Prezzano Durfee writes, “I had a great weekend hanging out with Pam and Dave Williams ’86 at Washington and Lee Parents Weekend in Lexington, Va., where our kids are enjoying college. Always so nice to catch up with old friends from CRH. Looking forward to celebrating our 50th birthday later this year with Courtney Ingraffia Barton ’85, Kristin Beeman Dunning ’85 and Debby Leckonby Thomas ’85.” Nicki Sanchez and Mike Schram ’74 visited with former history teacher Tom Generous in Carrboro, N.C., last summer. Tom reminisces, “Nicki lived with Diane and me in Pitman House both when she was a Fourth Former and then when she was the House Counselor in her Sixth. Besides doing a fabulous job in that office, Nicki and another Pitwoman are legendary among form-mates for ”crashing” the boys’ cookout that year. Mike lived with Diane and me in Chapel House in his Fourth Form, our very first year at The Choate School, 1971-72. He remembers fondly baby-sitting 5- and 2-year–old Michelle ’84 and Suzanne ’87. Not long ago, Nicki and Mike met when they were seated next to each other on a commercial airliner. They are now in a loving relationship, and thinking seriously about what the future might bring. When they discovered the connection to me, they went out of their way to come here to Carrboro.”

John Smyth ’83 North Palm Beach, Florida

creative. My number one activity outside of work is singing jazz and it really started here, in the PMAC, in 1979. I was very lucky to have teachers who really made you try to attain professional status right out of the gate at 14. It was a brotherhood of hard work. A lot of us put in extra hours to make the shows a success. It was very cool to get to work with a team of students and adults at the same level working toward the same goal.

Consider what Choate means to you and invest today!

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Ken Kennerly




Athletics were a big part of Ken Kennerly’s life when he attended Choate Rosemary Hall. A member of the Class of 1983, he played varsity soccer for three years, captaining that team as a sixth former. A native of New York City, he also played varsity baseball for a couple of seasons. So it is not at all surprising that Ken decided to work in sports once his schooling was done, first in client representation with a couple of industry heavyweights, ProServ, Advantage International, and most recently as the head of IMG Golf’s North America Event Group. In addition, and for the last 11 years, Ken served as the executive director of The Honda Classic, an important stop on the PGA Tour’s annual Florida swing, and this past December he resigned from IMG to start his new agency, K2 Sports Ventures, LLC with his primary role continuing as the Honda Classic’s Executive Director. “I was very lucky to be able to make my love of athletics into my livelihood,” says the father of two college-aged children and the brother of two other Choaties, the late Charlie Kennerly ’85, after whom an annual athletic award is named, and Owen ’87. Ken well remembers when the notion that there may be a way to make a living in sports came to him. “It was in 1985, when the America’s Cup races were being held in Australia, and I was one of those idiots who got up at three in the morning to watch them on ESPN,” he says. “I was surprised at how commercialized the sport had become and how prominent logos for a number of corporate goods and services were. It made me think of how big sports marketing was getting, and how much fun it would be to work in that realm.” Shortly after graduating from Dartmouth in 1987, with a bachelor’s in economics, he went to work for ProServ, managing its Athlete Golf Client division and representing players like two-time U.S. Open champion Lee Janzen. After 16 months there, Ken took a similar position with a rival firm, Advantage International, laboring at that outfit until the end of 1993, at which point he moved to Florida to represent professional golfers for Jack Nicklaus’ company, Golden Bear International. “I never played on the golf teams at Choate or Dartmouth,” Ken says. “But I did play the game recreationally, and I really loved it. The people around golf were great, and so was the culture. I really enjoyed being a part of it.” In fact, he enjoyed it so much that in 1996, he formed his own company, International Golf Partners. And in time, he began diversifying by entering the corporate event and hospitality business. In 2005, PGA Tour officials approached Ken about taking over the Honda Classic, which was floundering and attracting neither

the best players in the world nor much of an on-site audience. He assumed control in time for the 2006 playing of the event, and a decade later it stands as one of the greater success stories on the circuit as well as a vibrant business that produces annual revenues of some $15 million. Attendance has quadrupled under Ken’s stewardship, and the field is now among the strongest on the PGA Tour. Ken’s work with that tournament is a big reason why IMG, the long-time leader in sports marketing, acquired Ken’s company in 2013, being sure to keep him in charge of the Honda Classic, as it also asked him to head up IMG Golf’s North America events division. All these years later, Ken harbors good memories of Choate Rosemary Hall, and of how his time there helped him prosper in later life. “The thing I think of most of all is the sense of independence Choate gave me and the opportunities I had during my four years in Wallingford to meet so many people from so many different backgrounds and parts of the world,” says the man whose late mother, Celeste Cheatham O’Neill, sat on the School’s Board of Trustees from 1981 to 1987. “I am also grateful for teachers and coaches, like Tom Yankus and Ed Maddox, who mentored me and served in many ways as second parents while I was there.” It was a great experience, he adds. And one that is still paying dividends. john steinbreder ’74 John Steinbreder ’74 is a staff writer for Global Golf Post. He has reported on the game from five continents. His 20th book, From Turnberry to Tasmania: Adventures of a Traveling Golfer, was reviewed in the Fall 2015 Bulletin.

SAVE THE DATE: The Honda Classic February 20-26, 2017

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Ian and Carlene Damon write, “After 20 years in Hawaii we have moved to the D.C. area. Our son Benjamin is doing the Choate Spanish program next summer, 3 generations of Choaties!” Catherine Meoni Ringling writes, “My husband Justin, and my two children Tyler and Tabitha and I, moved to Powhatan, Va., from Westerly, R.I., in July of 2012 and we are really loving Virginia. This is my fifth year working for my daughter’s Catholic school and my first year coaching volleyball. We had an amazing season and made it to the semi-finals; a first for Blessed Sacrament’s 13-year girls’ volleyball history. Go Knights!”

’87 Paul Grabowski writes, “I am co-chairing the Legal Marketing Association Annual Conference to be held in Las Vegas, March 27-29, 2017. This is the largest such industry conference with over 1500 attendees. The book I co-authored The ABCs of Legal Marketing is available on Amazon and has been ranked in the top 100 of books for the Law Practice/ Law Office Education category.”

Seth Kaufman and his wife, Dr. Lisa Kaufman, welcomed Vivian Hazel Kaufman into the family on June 4, 2016. Seth writes, “She’s been a joy. She’s our first, and we’re both adjusting to our new life as parents.” In other news he reports, “My old roommate Brent Ryan was in Portland (Oregon) in November for a conference. We got a chance to see each other while he was here, including watching the Cubs break the curse. It was great to have a chance to catch up with Brent, and for him to meet Vivian.” Amanda Murray is entering her fifth year as Editorial Director of Weinstein Books, a joint venture between the Hachette Book Group and the Weinstein film company. This past summer she finally bit the bullet and left New York City, her home for the past 25 years, and moved with her two small children to Quogue on the East End of Long Island. She’s learning to love telecommuting and hopes to meet up with fellow Choaties very soon.


Kathleen Leisure married Alan Haberstock on July 2, 2016. Courtney Williams was a bridesmaid. Says Kathleen, “I was so grateful on the day of the wedding that Courtney helped to organize everything; it all went beautifully. I now live in Central Maine with my husband. I am teaching yoga and we just got a puppy!”

’89 Keith Sauer and Heather Wilding-White are happy and well in N.H. Keith is the Department Head for the Paramedic Emergency Medicine degree program at NHTI-Concord’s Community College. Heather continues to be a Project Manager at Connections in Merrimack, N.H. Says Keith, “Our kids (15 & 12) are growing up way too quickly!”





4 1 Seth Kaufman, ’87 and his wife Dr. Lisa Kaufman welcomed a

3 Choate alums gathered at TRUCK restaurant in Bedford, N.Y. over

5 Keith Sauer and Heather Wilding-White ’89 recently got together

daughter, Vivian Hazel Kaufman, on June 4, 2016. 2 The Class of 1987 gathered together in NYC (pictured here) and LA in October to reconnect in anticipation of their 30th reunion in May.

the Thanksgiving holiday. From left, Elizabeth Fogarty ’89, BJ DeMeo Casey ’88, Nick Sonne ’88, Anne Fogarty Kain ’88, and Anny Phillips Hommeyer ’88. 4 BJ DeMeo Casey ’88 and Lauryn Hart ’88 got their families together at Deerfield Day.

with classmate Sara Nechasek and attempted to recreate a 1987 photo of their group!

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1990s ’90 Matt Zavod was selected to sing the national anthem at the Sacramento River Cats (AAA affiliate for the San Francisco Giants) Minor League Baseball game on Labor Day weekend. Says Matt, “It was a fun event! You can view the video on my YouTube page: Doctor Zavod.” ’91

1 2



1 Josh Barrow ’94 resides in

3 Nell Shanahan Schwartz

the Seattle area with his wife, Janelle, and three children Sophia (11), Hailey (9), and Pierce (3). 2 Meredith Bower ’94, and her husband, Newton Holt, are happily adjusting to the laid-back lifestyle of Denver after being in D.C. for too long.

’95 and husband Adam, welcomed their third child, Hannah Clare, on May 9th, 2016. Hannah joins big brothers Jonah and William. 4 Suzanne Temple Prescott ’97 and her husband, Ryan, welcomed their second child, a daughter, named Bronwyn Elizabeth Prescott on July 6, 2016. Big brother Conner (age 5) is excited to have a little sister.

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Sally G. Brink writes, “While at the 25th Reunion, I was walking around campus thinking, ’What would it be like to live in Wallingford again?” I am finding out as I have taken a new position with Parent & Parent, LLP, the IRS Medic, on South Main St. I am helping people at home and abroad with simple to complex personal, business and international tax issues. Still smiling when thinking of the reunion; it was great to see everyone!” Shannon Clare writes, “I am the Co-President of the Parent Association at Williamsburg Northside Schools in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. It’s incredibly fulfilling as our primary goal is to raise money for the school’s Diversity Scholarship and Hardship Fund. Additionally, I was recently tapped to serve on the school’s Search Committee for a new Head of School. It’s a fascinating process and a wonderful opportunity to have a positive impact on a school my daughter Izzy loves.” Dana Pounds is Co-founder and Executive Director of Nature’s Academy in Bradenton, FL. Over the past decade, Dana and her husband, Jim, have grown their non-profit outdoor education business from a mom and pop operation to a five-person team that provides “edventures” – STEM-themed outdoor educational field trips – to over 7,000 students in 100 plus programs annually. They use proceeds from programs to offer similar opportunities to underrepresented fifth graders who attend public school in the Greater Tampa Bay area. Dana has another full time job. She continues to battle a rare cancer which resulted in the amputation of her right leg. She is currently undergoing experimental chemotherapy requiring her to travel across country to participate in clinical trials. She has a prosthetic running blade that she uses in her “Pounding the Pavement” initiative to raise awareness and support for Nature’s Academy and cancer research. Dana uses this major life challenge as a platform for her blog, which encourages others to overcome obstacles and pursue their dreams.


Josh Barrow lives in the Seattle area with his wife Janelle and three children Sophia (11), Hailey (9), and Pierce (3). He is managing partner of a technology services firm and is also serving as a Lieutenant Colonel in the National Guard. In his ”spare” time, Josh competes in National Guard biathlon and coaches his kids athletic teams. Feel free to connect and reach out to Josh if you’re ever in the Seattle area.

Meredith Bower became the Director of Membership & Development for the National Cannabis Industry Association ( in Denver, CO in October. After a decade of association management work in Washington, DC, she is thrilled to bring her nonprofit management expertise to an industry that’s in a stage of both tremendous growth and future political uncertainty. She became a medical marijuana patient in D.C. in January and has been featured in national news outlets discussing D.C.’s program and how medical marijuana has allowed her to dramatically reduce her opioid use to treat a chronic pain condition. Meredith, her husband, Newton Holt, of six years, and their orange tabby cat, Firn, are happily adjusting to the laid-back lifestyle of Denver after being in DC for too long. She’s trying to decide where to donate all the suits she’ll happily never need to wear again. Amanda Star Frazer has returned home to Long Island (NY), after 12 years in Miami. She is an attorney at the law firm of Esseks, Hefter, Angel, Di Talia & Pasca, LLP in Riverhead. She lives in East Hampton with her husband and daughter and is looking forward to seeing more of her Choate friends. John Lawlor writes, “My wife Patricia and I wanted to report that I have a new son, John Christian Thomas, who joins older siblings Keagan (13), Grace (9), Marie (6) and Catherine (4). All are healthy and happy. We continue to live in Fort Myers, Florida.” Colm Rafferty was re-elected to serve as Vice Chairman for the American Chamber of Commerce in China in 2017. With the recent election, next year will be an interesting year for U.S. businesses in China!


Greg Yu and wife Michelle So made a spontaneous trip to Wallingford to walk down the memory lane. Says Greg, “We were lucky to come by during Parents’ Weekend to witness a few home games, allowing us to soak in the Choate spirit! On our way out, we bumped into Kirk McMurray ’95 and David Lai ’94. It’s nice to reconnect with them after all these years.”


Josh Martino is President and Legal Counsel for Bono’s Pit Bar-B-Q, Inc. and Willie Jewell’s Old School Bar-B-Q, Inc. which combines his passion for small business, local philanthropic involvement, and the culinary industry. Bono’s now has 20 locations and Willie Jewell’s has six locations in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, New Hampshire, and Colorado. Josh graduated from Vanderbilt University and earned his J.D. from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in New York. He has worked passionately to raise awareness and funding for local organizations such as The Donna Foundation, Wounded Warrior Project, Tony Boselli Foundation, ALS Association, and Feeding Northeast Florida. Josh is on the Advisory Board for the Davis College of

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What a remarkable place to be…

TOP Greg Yu and wife Michelle

BOTTOM Dana Pounds ’91,

So ’95 made a spontaneous trip to Wallingford during Parents’ Weekend to witness a few home games, and soak in the Choate spirit!

Co-founder and Executive Director of Nature’s Academy in Bradenton, Fla., leads students through an estuary.

Business at Jacksonville University and is a member of the UNF Student Affairs Community Council. He currently resides in Ponte Vedra Beach with his wife, Kirsten, daughters, Ella, Chase, and Mae, and dog Mia.

Cally Angeletti ’17 Basking Ridge, New Jersey


Patrick Martin writes, “My wife, Lisa, and I welcomed our first child, a son named Weston Martin, in February 2016.” Jennifer Hare Shipp has joined the legal team at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation as Counsel, primarily supporting its grantmaking in Global Development and Population.

involved. In my previous school, I was one of 11 in my grade, so when I was looking at boarding schools a strong community was very important to me. At Choate, I found my second family. Now as a Gold Key tour guide, I get to share everything I love about Choate with potential students. I tell them about our school spirit and the atmosphere on Deerfield Day. I’m not even that into sports, but I love going to games and seeing my friends play.

Consider what Choate means to you and invest today!

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“Xander Duell starred and wrote the lyrics for Pandaemonium, a hybrid of physical theater and cinema that had its local debut at New York Live Arts last September.”




’00 Leland Drummond Brito e Cunha celebrated 6 years in business with the company she co-founded in 2010, AZIONE ( – a bicoastal PR and Creative Agency with over 30 lifestyle clients. Otessa Ghadar writes, “I had my first-ever solo gallery exhibition titled This Is Our Youth at Coldwell Banker’s Art14 space in D.C.” She had a solo multi-media exhibition entitled, This Must Be the Place, as part of FotoWeek DC, at Fathom Gallery. FotoWeek DC is a major undertaking of the Smithsonian Museum, along with other amazing art-supporters. She says, “It’s very exciting to be a part of this community and have my exhibition as part of their line-up.” One of her still photographs was selected by Transformer Gallery, to be included in their 13th annual benefit and auction. And last, but certainly not least, she is also leading a ”State of the Union” style discussion about ”New Venues & Vehicles for Women in Film,” at the National Museum for Women in the Arts” (NMWA) in January, as part of their ”Culture Capital” program.

’02 Vanessa Kitchen writes, ”I have moved from New York to San Francisco this fall to join my family in their thriving real estate business at Pacific Union International. Any Choaties in the area please get in touch as I’d love to reconnect!” Bo Leland and Mark Osborne hung out in Las Vegas during the weekend of October 14th. Sadly, Daniel DiTomasso was unable to attend. Bo, Mark, and Daniel entered the class of ’02 as fifth formers.

TOP Dylan Farrell ’14 (foreground) with a teammate from Harvard

TOP Oliver, son of Leland Drummond Brito e Cunha ’00, celebrated

and another from the University of Vermont competing in the 2016 North American Championships held on Lake Ontario in August. BOTTOM D.R. Holmes ’02 and Milena Duke were married on May 21 at St. Dominic Church in Oyster Bay, N.Y., and celebrated with several Choate alumni.

his first birthday on November 18, 2016. BOTTOM Lucy Phillips ’01 earned her MFA from the New York Academy of Art this year. In June, she married Pierre Yared, a professor at Columbia Business School, on her family’s farm in North Carolina.

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Xander Duell starred and wrote the lyrics for Pandaemonium, a hybrid of physical theater and cinema that had its local debut at New York Live Arts last September. Said a New York Times review, “Much of the pleasure, right from the start, comes from the songs of Xander Duell. A rumpled troubadour, he sings pessimistic lyrics in sweet melodies sometimes reminiscent of Brian Wilson.”


Jen Barry Jomier writes, “My husband Julien and I welcomed twins this summer! Robin and Emma were born in Lyon, France on June 2, 2016.”

TOP Gerard McGeary ’00 married Sarah Gonzalez in October at the

Branford House in Groton, CT. Choaties in attendance: Stephen Haskins (best man), Jamel Melville, Clark Briffel, Bammy Olatunbosun, Manu Nathan, Sarah Pikos ’01, and sister Ashley McGeary ’08. BOTTOM Rachel Miller ’12 overlooking "Music City" Nashville after an a capella concert.

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’06 Niki Albino married Tripp Gavin last August at Trinity College where they both went to school. ’07 Elizabeth Walbridge writes, “My one-year break from teaching at Choate to go to Harvard has turned into an extended stay in Boston. I’m happily working in the Digital Production office at WGBH in the Children’s Department. Ever log onto That’s where much of my work appears. I’m most excited to be working on a project with a $10M grant from NASA, and WGBH has a couple of other exciting projects in the pipeline. Living in Somerville and bartending part-time, I’d love to catch up with other alums and faculty nearby. Please get in touch!” Alex Wiske writes, “After living in Los Angeles for five years and working in the entertainment industry, I moved back east last August to start in the M.B.A./M.F.A. program at New York University. The dual degree program between the Stern School of Business and the Tisch School of the Arts is geared towards film and television producers.” Alex is looking forward to reconnecting with his Choate classmates.

TOP Dhruv Pratap Singh ’04 and Elizabeth Crettier Cafritz Wilkes

were married on October 15, 2015. The couple had a Catholic ceremony in Bethesda, Md., and Hindu ceremony in Washington, D.C. BOTTOM Spanish department colleagues gathered at a memorial service for former Spanish teacher Juan Lopez in Lawrenceville, N.J., on November 13. From left, Joan Hurley, Jesus Peters (husband of Beth), Charlie Long, Beth Peters, Patti Antunez ’83, and Nancy Burress.

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Melody Travers has kept up singing and performing since her Choate days in Milagros and the spring musical. She writes, “This past October I released a debut album Thanks Mangled Brain with my indie-folk duo Little Hermit. You can listen anywhere you get your music or check out our website: I am working on a solo album Comets and other drifting bodies set for release in 2017. Stay tuned!”

2010s ’14 Dylan Farrell had two notable sailing achievements this summer while competing in the 3-handed International Lightning class with a college teammate from Harvard and another college student from the University of Vermont. The trio won the 2016 Connecticut/Rhode Island District Championships held at Cedar Point Yacht Club in June and finished a remarkable 5th out of 76 boats in the 2016 North American Championships held on Lake Ontario in August. At North Americans, they came in ahead of numerous accomplished adult

Alex Porfirenko ’99 married Elizabeth Catesby Massey, from Fredericksburg, VA. The couple married in Santorini, Greece on September 29, 2016, and reside in Arlington, Va.

crews from the United States, Canada, and South America. In addition to being 5th overall at the end of the week-long qualifying series and championship competition, they finished the best of any new team in the event and the best of any team in which all three crew members were under the age of 21.

Former Faculty Notes John Foster, former faculty member who served in the 1960s as Varsity Tennis coach and Head of the French Department, has published his 4th collection of poems, A Gesture of Words, which has earned the endorsement of Florida’s Poet Laureate. The book is now being considered for classroom use at Loomis Chaffee, where the author was a student, and at the Emma Willard School, where he taught after departing Choate in 1969. A Gesture of Words is available at John resides with his wife in Florida and would enjoy hearing from any of his former students at

TOP Karl Blunden ’04 and wife, Hayley, welcomed a son, Everett

James, on August 5, 2016. The family resides in New York City. BOTTOM Left, Kelly Dormandy ’04, Assistant Strength and Condi-

tioning Coach, University of Southern California (19-4-2), and Caitlin Farrell ’15, right, starting player for Georgetown (20-3-3), competed in the highest level of collegiate soccer at the NCAA D-1 Women’s College Cup Final Four in San Jose, on December 2, 2016.

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IN MEMORIAM | Remembering Those We Have Lost Alumni and Alumnae

’40 C Kirkland W. Todd Jr., 95, a retired plastic surgeon, died September 27, 2016 in Nashville, Tenn. Born in Pittsburgh, Pa., Kirk came to Choate in 1938; he lettered in soccer and wrestling, and was in the Dramatic Club. After earning degrees from Cornell and the University of Pittsburgh Medical School, he served in the Navy as Chief of Plastic Surgery at the U. S. Naval Hospital in St. Albans, N.Y. He then moved to Nashville, where he was an Associate Professor of Surgery at Vanderbilt and in private practice. Kirk was a member of many professional organizations, including the Southeastern Society of Plastic Surgery and the Aesthetic Society of Plastic Surgery, of which he was a founder. His hobbies included flying, duck hunting, golf, boating, fishing, bridge, and dancing. He leaves four children, including Kirkland Todd III, 3600 Old Forest Rd., # 155, Lynchburg, VA 24501; five grandchildren; and a great-grandchild. A brother, Burt Kerr Todd ’42, also attended Choate. ’42 C Cochran “Gus” Supplee, 93, a retired corporate communications executive, died July 14, 2016 in Santa Barbara, Calif. Gus came to Choate in 1939; he was Associate Editor of the News, Editor of the Literary Magazine, and in the Cum Laude Society. He also won a school prize for excellence in English. After graduating from Princeton, he enlisted in the Army, training with the Colorado ski troops and attaining the rank of lieutenant. He then earned an MBA from New York University and began a lengthy career in advertising and corporate relations with Cluett Peabody, Young and Rubicam, and Foote, Cone and Belding, all in New York. Gus was a former trustee of Boys Clubs of New York. He leaves his wife, Angela Supplee, 300 Hot Springs Rd. # L-223, Santa Barbara, CA 93108; and a daughter. ’43 C

Franklin W. Pierce, 92, the retired founder of a furniture firm, died July 15, 2016. Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., Franklin came to Choate in 1940. He lettered in soccer, hockey, and tennis, was in the Glee Club, and won a school speaking prize. He also participated in the School’s Commando Course, a national program in 1942-44 designed

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to prepare high school boys for military service. After Choate, he was a medical corpsman in the Navy during World War II. He then went to Princeton, where he again was a star athlete. He worked as a salesman in New York before founding the Homeplanner Furniture Co., which eventually included four retail stores. Franklin later was a tennis professional, teaching at clubs in New York, Florida, Arizona, and Colorado. He leaves two sons, including Franklin B. Pierce ’71, 581 Navesink River Rd., Red Bank, NJ 07701; a daughter; and four grandchildren.

’44 C Peter F. Clifton, 90, a retired educator, died August 3, 2016 in Water Mill, N.Y. Born in Overbrook, Pa., Peter came to Choate in 1939. He lettered in hockey, was on the Board of the Brief, played drums in the band, and was head cheerleader. During World War II, he served with the Merchant Marine Corps in the South Pacific. He then earned degrees from Harvard and Columbia Teachers College. Peter taught fourth grade at Saint David’s School in New York, rising to become Head of the Lower School and Assistant Headmaster. From 1967 to 1974 he was Headmaster of the Green Vale School in Glen Head, N.Y. He then headed the Harvard College Fund and later ran a teacher placement service. He was co-founder of New York Interschool Faculty Diversity Search, a program to recruit teachers and administrators of color for independent schools. He enjoyed swimming in the ocean. He leaves his wife, Alice Clifton, 122 Strongs Ln., Water Mill, NY 11976; four children; and 13 grandchildren. George A. Kaye, 88, a retired Air Force Colonel and later director of health services at Ohio State University, died May 24, 2016 in Newport News, Va. Born in New York City, George was at Choate for one year; he played club football, basketball, and baseball, and was Associate Editor of the News. After graduating from Amherst, he joined the Air Force, later earning two graduate degrees from Penn. His military service included tours in Vietnam, France, Alabama, California and elsewhere. He also was in the Washington office of the U.S. Surgeon General. After retiring from the Air Force in 1980, George was director of health service facilities at Ohio State for another decade. He

enjoyed world travel and was a docent and volunteer at museums. He leaves his wife, Doris Kaye, 7505 River Rd., No. 3-C, Newport News, VA 23607; three sons; and three grandchildren.

’45 C James N. Kennedy Jr., 88, a retired stockbroker and banker, died May 29, 2016. Born in Youngstown, Ohio, Jim was at Choate for one year; he lettered in baseball and basketball. In the summer of 1945, he was recruited by the Pittsburgh Pirates as a player in their minor league system. He served in the Army Adjutant General’s department before attending Lehigh University, graduating in 1951. Jim was then an FBI special agent for 14 years. Starting in the 1960s, he worked as a stockbroker and as an investment officer for Commercial National Bank, then joined E. F. Hutton in Little Rock, Ark., and later was with Prudential Securities. He enjoyed collecting books, playing golf, and following sports teams. He leaves three children and a granddaughter. ’46 C

Edward Albee, 88, the Pulitzer-Prize and Tony-Award-winning playwright called one of the leading literary figures of his time, died September 16, 2016 (See reminiscence on page 12). Thomas Perry True, 87, a retired corporate marketing executive, died June 30, 2016 in Brunswick, Maine. Born in South Amboy, N.J., Perry, who spent his childhood in China and the Philippines, came to Choate in 1944. He lettered in football and track, was on the Student Council and the Library Committee, and was in the Cum Laude Society, the Dramatic Club, the Choral Club, and the Glee Club. He was among those chosen by his classmates as having “Done Most for Choate.” After graduating from Yale, Perry served in the Air Force. He then was a marketing executive with Continental Can, Ford Motor Co., and Kimberly-Clark in various parts of the U.S. In his later years, he lived in Maine. He leaves five children, eight grandchildren, and a brother.

’47 C

James A. Fish, 89, a retired dairy farmer, died August 25, 2016 in Kalamazoo, Mich. Born in Scranton, Pa., Jim came to Choate in 1941. He lettered in football, was captain of the Skeet Team, was in the Dramatic Club and the Dance Committee, and was an honorary member of the Student Council. After graduating from Penn State with a degree in animal science and forestry, he served in the Merchant Marine and, later, in the Army. Jim bought and ran Lockshore Farms near Kalamazoo, winning many awards for his Guernsey herds. He was a director of several professional organizations, including the American Guernsey Cattle Club, the Michigan Guernsey Breeders Association, and the Michigan Purebred Cattle Association. In 1987 he was named Michigan Dairy Farmer of the Year, and four years later was inducted into the Michigan Farmers Hall of Fame. He was also active in conservation issues, winning several awards. He leaves his wife, Alice Fish, Lockshore Farms, Hickory Corners, MI 49060; three children; four grandchildren; and a brother. Henrik A. E. Krogius, 87, a retired television news producer and editor, died October 4, 2016 in Brooklyn, N.Y. Born in Tammerford, Finland, Henrik emigrated to New York City in 1939 and came to Choate in 1944, where he had an exceptional career. He was a member of the Cum Laude Society, the Debate Council, St. Andrew’s Cabinet, the German Club, and the Student Council; lettered in tennis and soccer; was Editorial Chairman of the News and President of the History Club; and won the School Seal Prize. After earning degrees from Harvard and Columbia, he served in the Air Force, then won a Pulitzer traveling scholarship that allowed him to be a freelance reporter in Europe, Asia, and Africa for two years. He worked for 27 years as a writer, editor, and news producer at NBC-TV; in 1977 he won an Emmy Award as producer of the 11 O’Clock News in New York. Henrik then was Editor of the Brooklyn Heights Press newspaper for 22 years. He wrote several books about New York, and was especially interested in the history of Brooklyn Heights. He leaves his wife, Elaine T. Krogius, 1 Pierrepont St., Apt. A, Brooklyn, NY 11201; two sons; two grandchildren; and a brother, Tristan Krogius ’50.

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Hugh Jeremy Packard, a teacher and administrator at Choate Rosemary Hall for

17 years, died December 25, 2016 in Plains Township, Pa. He was 78. The son of Choate faculty members Hubert S. Packard and Anita F. Packard, Jere was born in New Haven and grew up on the Choate campus. His mother was one of the first women appointed to the faculty of what was then an all-boys’ school. He entered School in 1949 as a first former. In his six years at School, he lettered in football, hockey and lacrosse (co-captain); was President of his fifth and sixth form classes, was on the Honor Committee and the Student Council, was in the Cum Laude Society, and won the School Seal Prize. His classmates voted him “Most Respected” and “Most Influential.”

AFTER EARNING DEGREES FROM WILLIAMS AND COLUMBIA, Jere served in the Marine Corps Reserve. He taught at Hotchkiss for two years and Eton (England) for two years before joining the Choate faculty in 1964. He taught history, and was head of the History Department from 1972 to 1974, and was form dean from 1972 to 1975 until he was appointed Head of Choate by Principal of Choate

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Rosemary Hall Charles F. Dey. He also coached football, ice hockey, and lacrosse. In 1980, Vice Principal Chas Twichell wrote, “Though Jere’s administrative duties prevent him from teaching more than one or two courses now, his colleagues still turn to him for advice, counsel, and technical assistance. He so radiates integrity, experience, and understanding of teen-aged boys that we all say ‘Let’s ask Jere’ when a particularly tough disciplinary action arises.” “A towering presence in the lives of Choate students and faculty for more than two decades,” recalled former Dean of Faculty Ed Maddox, “Jere was a teacher, coach, house adviser, and administrator, a role model and friend to students and colleagues alike. He and I entered the Deans Office together in 1972, sharing a small office in Hill House. He was a master at balancing discipline and discretion, and had the good judgment and instinct when to use which.” Jere left Choate in 1981 to become headmaster of Ridley College School in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada, and received an honorary Doctor of Sacred Letters degree from Wycliffe College, University of Toronto. From 1990 until 2007, he was President of Wyoming Seminary College Preparatory School in Kingston, Pa. During his 17-year tenure at Sem, Jere taught AP European history, founded the school’s Teaching Intern Program and worked to increase the number of courses and AP classes offered as well as financial aid. He also took a leadership

role in expanding the school’s English as a Second Language program, founding and expanding the Performing Arts Institute and summer programs, building and renovating facilities at both Lower and Upper Schools, quadrupling the school’s endowment and the development of 10 new athletic programs. He was active in the community, serving in leadership positions with the Greater Wilkes-Barre Chamber of Commerce and Leadership Wilkes-Barre, The United Way of Luzerne County, the Luzerne County Historical and Geological Society, Jewish Family Services, the Greater Wyoming Valley Audubon Society and the Wyoming Valley Torch Club. He also served as president of the Pennsylvania Association of Independent Schools and on the executive board of the Association of Delaware Valley Independent Schools. He was an adjunct professor of history at Misericordia and Wilkes Universities, and chair of the Luzerne County Board of Elections. He enjoyed birdwatching, growing vegetables, and his beloved dogs. He had a working farm in Vermont, and would travel there as often as he could to oversee its operation. At Choate, the Pratt-Packard Declamation Contest was established in 2001 to honor Jere and the late drama teacher E. Stanley Pratt. He leaves his wife, Ingrid Cronin; five children, including Eliza Packard ’83 and Seth Packard ’84; and three grandchildren. A memorial service was held January 14 in the Kirby Center for Creative Arts at Wyoming Seminary’s Upper School campus in Kingston.

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’48 C Paul Mathewson Jr., 85, a retired bank and manufacturing executive, died January 10, 2016 in St. Augustine, Fla. Born in Bridgeport, Conn., Paul came to Choate in 1945; he played league football, hockey, and baseball, and was a co-winner of the School Library Prize. After graduating from Hobart, he spent two years in the Army, then joined First National Bank of New York City, working with branches in the Dominican Republic, Trinidad, and Puerto Rico. He later was an executive of Sequoyah Corp. and Electrolux Corp. He leaves his wife, Marta Mathewson, 1 Ocean Trace Rd., Unit 238, St. Augustine, FL 32080; three children; and seven grandchildren. ’49 C George Jarvis Coffin Jr., 86, a retired executive of a paper company, died July 10, 2016 in Peterborough, N.H. Born in New York City, Jarvis came to Choate in 1945; he played football, rowed crew, was a cheerleader and was in the Dramatic Club. After graduating from Hobart College, he served with the Marines in Korea, attaining the rank of First Lieutenant. He then enjoyed a long career in the paper industry, retiring to Hancock, N.H., in 1997. Jarvis was active in the American Legion and in All Saints Church in Peterborough. He was a former President of the local historical society, and was on the Monadnock Hospital Community Board. He leaves his wife, Barbara Coffin, 125 Rivermead Rd., Peterborough, NH 03458; three sons; eight grandchildren; two greatgrandchildren, and a sister. His father, the late G. Jarvis Coffin Sr. ’13, also attended Choate. Charles M. “Corky” Hovey Jr., 86, a retired executive of a milk products company, died October 26, 2016 in Linwood, N.J. Born in Utica, N.Y., Corky came to Choate in 1945. He lettered in football and baseball and was chairman of the Sixth Form House Committee. After attending Iowa State University and graduating from Bentley University, he worked for the family milk products business, Hovey, Stanter & Co., in New York. Corky later moved to Linwood, where he was a liquor and wine salesman. He enjoyed anything and everything sports-related. He leaves his wife, Jane Hovey, 410 Jefferson Ave., Linwood, NJ 08221; a son; and two grandchildren.

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Benjamin L. B. Ten Eyck, 85, a retired industrial engineer, died September 16, 2016 in Beaufort, S.C. Born in Larchmont, N.Y., Ben came to Choate in 1947. He lettered in tennis and hockey, played baritone horn in the band and orchestra, and was in St. Andrew’s Cabinet, the Glee Club, and the Cum Laude Society. After graduating from Yale, he served in the Army, then spent many years as an engineer with Eastman Kodak Co., during which time he earned a master’s degree from the University of Rochester. Ben enjoyed tennis, photographing wildlife both on land and underwater, and serving in the vestry of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Rochester, N.Y. He leaves his wife, Jane Ten Eyck, 1119 Pick Pocket Plantation Dr., Beaufort, SC 29902; three sons; and three grandchildren.

’49 RH Helen Bisbee Schoble Lenton, 86, active in civic causes, died August 6, 2016. Born in Bryn Mawr, Pa., Biz, as she was known, came to Rosemary Hall in 1944. She was on the Tea House Committee and the board of the Question Mark; in Philomel and the Music Club; and was Choir Mistress. In the 1970s, Biz was vice president of the Candy Stripers and Pink Ladies of Lakeland (Fla.) Regional Hospital; she was also a docent at the Polk Public Museum. She leaves four daughters, six grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren, and a sister, Cynthia S. Crate ’46, P.O. Box 271082, Louisville, CO 80027.

’50 C

James O. McClellan, 84, a retired real estate broker, died November 15, 2016. Born in New York City, Jim came to Choate in 1947. He was captain of the varsity tennis team and lettered in soccer and squash; he was in the Press Club, the History Club, and St. Andrew’s Cabinet. After graduating from Yale, he served in the Army in Germany, attaining the rank of First Lieutenant. Jim then was a sales executive with Continental Can Co. and a loan officer for Citi Bank in New York before moving to Hilton Head Island, S.C., where he was a real estate broker for 30 years. He enjoyed tennis, sailing, horse racing and masonry. He leaves his wife, Elizabeth Geary, 15 Spotted Sandpiper Rd., Hilton Head Island, SC 29928; 11 children and stepchildren,

including Elizabeth Geary ’82 and Robert Geary ’85; many grandchildren; a sister and a brother.


C George P. Edmonds Jr., 83, a retired engineer, died June 25, 2016 in Osterville, Mass. Born in Wilmington, Del., George came to Choate in 1947. He was manager of the Projection Association, President of the Weather Bureau, a campus cop, and in the Cum Laude Society. After graduating from MIT, he served in the Air Force and then earned a master’s degree in aerospace engineering, also from MIT. He worked as an engineer for the Charles Stark Draper Laboratory in Cambridge, Mass., and was one of those who perfected the guidance system for Apollo spacecraft. An enthusiastic boater and sailboat racer, George was a life trustee of Boston’s Museum of Science and was a former trustee of Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He leaves four children, 13 grandchildren, and a brother. George L. Moxon, 83, a retired trial attorney, died August 29, 2016. Born in Chicago, George came to Choate in 1948; he lettered in football and track and was in the Chess Club and the Western Club. After serving in the Army, he earned degrees from Harvard and the University of Miami Law School; while in law school he clerked part-time for the FBI, occasionally driving then-Director J. Edgar Hoover. George spent decades as a trial attorney in Broward County, Fla. He was active in cultural arts of the local community, and enjoyed fishing, skiing, and jazz and classical music. He leaves his wife, Sally Moxon, 5630 Harding St., Hollywood, FL 33021; three daughters; eight grandchildren; and a sister.

’53 C William Spooner Smith Jr., 82, a retired restaurant owner, died August 30, 2016 in Bedford, N.H. Born in Buffalo, N.Y., Spooner came to Choate in 1948; he was on the Debate Team and in the Chess Club, and he played league football, basketball, and baseball. After graduating from Rosary Hill College in Amherst, N.Y., he served in the Air Force. He then managed his family’s Laube’s Old Spain Restaurant in Buffalo; he later owned Pablo’s Mexican Hacienda in Hooksett, N.H. Spooner was also a drug and alcohol counselor for the Sobriety

Maintenance Center in Manchester, N.H. He leaves his wife, Carole Smith; four children; six grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren. Carl Bradley Tips, 81, an advertising executive, died August 28, 2016. Born in New York City, Brad came to Choate in 1949. He was Captain of varsity cross country and lettered in track; was Vice President of the Current History Club; was Advertising Manager of the Brief; and was on the Dance Committee, the Sixth Form Honor Committee, and the Student Council and in the Press Club. After graduating from Williams, he was in the Army Reserves, then began a lengthy career in advertising, working for Foote, Cone & Belding and Cramer Krasselt. Brad was also a fundraiser for the Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. He leaves his wife, Virginia Tips, VI at the Glen, Glenview, IL 60026; two children; and five grandchildren.

’54 C

Wilson Schoellkopf Jr., 80, a retired businessman and investor, died September 10, 2016 in Dallas, Texas. Born in Dallas, Wilson came to Choate in 1950. He lettered in golf, was on the Board of the Brief, and was in the Southern Club, the Bridge Club and the Dance Committee. After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin, he worked in construction, building apartments, homes, and other buildings. He later managed his family’s investments. Active in the community, Wilson was a former chairman of the board of trustees of the Hockaday School in Dallas and was a director of the Dallas Lighthouse for the Blind. He enjoyed golfing. He leaves his wife, Jan Schoellkopf, 8625 King George Dr., Suite 236, Dallas, TX 75235; three children; six grandchildren; and two brothers, John Schoellkopf ’56 and Alan Schoellkopf ’61. His mother, the late Clifton Dulaney “Peggy” Lingo ’29, attended Rosemary Hall.

’54 RH Susan C. King, 80, a retired business administrator, died November 13, 2016 in Portsmouth, R.I. Born in Buffalo, N.Y., Susan came to Rosemary Hall in 1949. She was a Marshal and Mistress of the Robes, and was in the Glee Club, the Choir, and Philomel. After graduating from Briarcliff College, she was a nurse’s aide for the Red Cross in Greenwich, Conn. Susan later was an

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administrator of Hodges Badge Co. of Portsmouth. More recently, she worked for the Newport (R.I.) Preservation Society at the Elms and the Breakers mansions. She leaves a brother and several nephews. Her mother, the late Virginia Vernon King ’24, also attended Rosemary Hall.

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Robert W. Durant, 79, a retired teacher, died July 4, 2016 of complications from cancer. Born in New York City, Bob came to Choate in 1952. He was Vice President of the Rod and Gun Club, was in the Skeet Club, and won a school prize for excellence in forestry. After graduating from Northwestern, he became an educator, teaching history, reading, and math, first in Connecticut and later in Lancaster, N.H. Bob was an avid outdoorsman, naturalist, author, artist, and wildlife photographer. He was also a drummer, touring the Pacific, Caribbean, and Europe with the Army Jazz Band during his time in the service. He leaves nephews, nieces, and cousins.

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Philip N. Miller, 75, a retired banker, died August 29, 2016 in Hilton Head, S.C. Born in South Orange, N.J., Phil came to Choate in 1956. He lettered in football and baseball and was in the Altar Guild and the French Club. After attending the University of Pennsylvania, he was a banker for Fidelity-Philadelphia Trust, Bankers Trust in New York, and elsewhere. Phil leaves a wife and three daughters. His father, the late George C. Miller ’31, also attended Choate.

’59 RH Frances Hetherington “Hether” Connor Turner, 75, a retired teacher, died September 30, 2016 in Nantucket, Mass. Born in Rochester, N.Y., Hether came to Rosemary Hall in 1957. She was on the Committee; in the Choir, Philomel, and the Whimawehs; and served as Fire Captain and a Marshal. After graduating from Skidmore, she married Sam Turner, a 1960 Choate graduate, and lived in the Rochester area. Hether taught biology and general science at RushHenrietta High School, retiring to raise her children. She was a Brownie and Cub Scout leader, a past president of the Allyn Creek Garden Club, and a past president of the Rochester General

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Hospital Twisting Twig. She was an avid reader and chaired several committees at her church. She leaves her husband, Samuel Turner II ’60, 13 Doc Ryder Dr., Nantucket, MA 02554; three children; 10 grandchildren; and a sister. Her grandmother, Dorothy Robinson ’07; her mother, Ruth Macomber Conner ’31; an aunt, Darcy Macomber Hetzel ’34; and cousins Darcy Hetzel Jagger ’61, Judith Hetzel Jones ’63, and the late Sarah Hetzel ’66, all attended Rosemary Hall.

’61 C Ralph J. Bunche Jr., 73, a retired investment banker, died of leukemia October 6, 2016 in London, England. Born in Washington D.C., Ralph, who was the first African American student admitted to Choate, was the son of Nobel Peace Prize laureate Ralph Bunche Sr. He came to Choate immediately after a wellpublicized incident in which he and his father were refused membership in a New York tennis club because of their race. At school, he was in the Current History Club and played league football, basketball, and tennis. After graduating from Colby, Ralph earned a master’s degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, spent two years in the Army, serving in Vietnam, and did graduate work at Keele University in Staffordshire, England. He was an investment banker for many years with JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, and ABN Amro Bank; he was also a financial and development consultant for companies in Africa. He worked with the Ralph Bunche Society, named for his late father, which seeks to raise the awareness of contributions by minorities and people of color in the field of international relations. He leaves his wife, Patricia Bunche, 53 Oakley St., London SW3 5NR, England; three children; and seven grandchildren. ’62 C

James H. Smith, 72, a retired Air Force officer, died September 30, 2016 in East Greenwich, R.I. Born in Nashua, N.H., Jim came to Choate in 1958; he lettered in football and was in the Rod and Gun Club and the Altar Guild. After graduating from the University of Rhode Island, he enlisted in the Air Force, serving in California, South Korea, Alabama, Mississippi,

and Guam. He won many awards and decorations, and attained the rank of Captain. After he retired in 1988, Jim owned a construction consulting firm in Rhode Island. He leaves two sons, including Kevin Smith, 212 Marlborough St., East Greenwich, RI 02818; and two siblings.

’64 C

Charles H. Thomas, 71, a retired real estate agent, died September 20, 2016, in Aiken, S.C. Born in Washington, D.C., Chuck came to Choate in 1960; he lettered in soccer and hockey, was Captain of the tennis team, won the Stillman Tennis Trophy, and was one of those his classmates named “Best Athlete.” He was also Secretary-Treasurer of the Choate Athletic Association and was on the Dance Committee. After earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Rollins College, he moved to Vail, Colo., where he was a real estate agent, ski instructor, and tennis coach. He later moved to Aiken. Chuck enjoyed all sports, especially soccer, tennis, and skiing, and he was known to friends as the “Dancing King.” He leaves his wife, Jill Thomas, 910 Two Notch Rd. Southeast, Aiken, SC 29803; two children; a granddaughter; and two brothers.

’73 C Sidney Wilson Smith, 60, an information technology executive, died November 29, 2015 in Memphis, Tenn. Born in Memphis, Wilson came to Choate in 1969; he was on the staff of the Brief. He then attended Columbia. After working in the accounting department at Al-Mac trucking in New York, he moved to Time, Inc., where he became an executive in the nascent computer department. He later handled technology for Memphis Light, Gas and Water and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. Wilson enjoyed computer games and social media. He leaves his partner, Cathy Ross, 1521 Linden Ave., Central Gardens, TN 38104-3808; and a brother. ’76 Lisa Zurn Victor, 57, died August 7, 2016 in Erie, Pa. Born in Erie, Lisa came to Rosemary Hall in 1972, and graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in psychology. An accomplished equestrian, she also enjoyed reading, playing tennis, and spending time with family. Lisa leaves

two daughters; two grandchildren; her parents; four step-siblings; and four siblings, including Peter Zurn ’72, 6110 Buman Rd., McKean, PA 16426. Her father, Frank Zurn ’45, also attended Choate, as did an uncle, Roger Zurn ’61, and another uncle, the late John Zurn ’43.

’82 Michael J. Packevicz Jr., 52, an English teacher, died September 17, 2016 in Trumbull, Conn. Born in New Haven, Mike came to Choate Rosemary Hall in 1978. He was Captain of varsity football and varsity track, and lettered in basketball; was President of the Student Council and a student representative on the Board of Trustees; sang in the Festival and Chamber choruses; and won the School Seal Prize and the Aurelian Honor Society Award. After graduating from Yale, Mike earned master’s and Ph.D. degrees from UConn. He taught English in China for two years, was a teacher and coach at Cheshire Academy for seven years, then returned to China, where he was Curriculum Director of the English Language Institute of China. At the time of his death, he was Director of Health Programs of the Yale-China Association. He was active in his church and sang with the Connecticut Yankee Chorus. He leaves his wife, Anne Packevicz, 142 Old Dike Rd., Trumbull, CT 06611; four children; and two sisters.

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’06 Alfred John Meyer, 29, an executive of a private equity firm, died September 22, 2016. Born in Jersey City, N.J., “AJ,” as he was known, came to Choate Rosemary Hall in 2002. He was co-captain of varsity hockey and was in the Cum Laude Society, the Maiyeros, Gold Key, and the Chinese Club. He was also the head of the Champions Club community service organization and a leader of the Special Population skate program. He won numerous School prizes, including the Aurelian Honor Society Award, the Kennerly Award, the Choate Rosemary Hall Award for

of the Camera Club. He studied at New York University and graduated from Princeton, then joined the Navy, attaining the rank of Lieutenant. Howard was a banker for 20 years with Lloyds and Wells Fargo banks. But in the 1970s, the Deputy Director of the Peace Corps persuaded him to be the Corps’ Country Director in the central African country of Malawi, and he never returned to banking. He spent two years in Malawi, then two years in Sierra Leone in west Africa. Returning to the United States in 1978, he was director of Boston’s

he was Dean of Faculty at Avon Old Farms School, then was Assistant Headmaster, and later Headmaster, at the Rectory School in Pomfret, Conn. After he retired from the Rectory, he returned to Avon Old Farms as a consultant and was later an admission officer at Skidmore. In his spare time, John enjoyed reading and walking. He leaves his wife, Millie Green, 95 Bryan St., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866; four sons, including Choate Rosemary Hall Trustee John F. Green ’77; eight grandchildren; and a great-grandson.

He developed the School’s Advanced Placement program in Spanish, the Spanish study abroad program, and exchange programs for teachers and students with schools in Ecuador and Spain. Doug Myers ’64, writing in 2014, remembered that “Juan and his gracious wife, Fran, were exemplary members of the Choate community. Great favorites with returning students and alumni, [they] were recipients of a constant stream of wedding invitations, Christmas cards, and birth announcements.” Frances died in 1996. Doug Bryant ’67 noted, “Throughout

“He is totally devoted to his students and to making certain that they learn Spanish. He cares so much about it that they catch the spark, and although he holds standards very high, I have never known a student who did not feel he was fortunate in having worked with Mr. López.” – FORMER HEADMASTER SEYMOUR ST. JOHN Spanish, and the Owen Morgan Prize; he also won honorable mention for the School Seal Prize. After graduating from Middlebury, he joined the Gerson Lehrman Group in Austin, Texas; in 2012, he moved to New York, where he became Vice President of Private Equity for GLG. AJ was active in civic life, teaching English as a second language, working at the New York Food Pantry, and coaching hockey. He leaves his parents, Regina Frost of Toms River, N.J. and Alfred Meyer of Westfield, N.J.; a brother; a sister; and his grandparents.

Pathfinder Foundation, then advised non-governmental agencies on development programs for African women, banking procedures in Sri Lanka, and several other international issues. In the 1990s, he was named a Kosovo diplomatic observer during that state’s breakaway from the Yugoslav federation. Howard lectured widely in schools and colleges about conditions in sub-Saharan Africa and in the Balkans. He enjoyed classical music and was active in the Presbyterian Church. He leaves a sister, DeWeenta Bones, 45874 268th St., Parker, SD 57053; and several nieces and nephews.

Faculty and Trustees

’46 C

Howard K. Gray , who was a Choate Trustee from 1970 to 1973, died May 23, 2016 in Sioux Falls, S.D. He was 88. Born in Sayre, Pa., Howard came to Choate in 1944. He was on the Board of the Brief, Assistant Business Manager of the Literary Magazine; in the Western Club, and Treasurer

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John Arthur Green, who taught history at Choate for four years, died October 7, 2016 in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. He was 85. Born in Mechanicville, N.Y., John graduated from Siena College, spent two years in the Army, then earned a master’s degree from the State University of New York at Albany. He came to Choate in 1966. After Choate,

Juan E. López, who taught Spanish at Choate Rosemary Hall for 30 years, died November 3, 2016 in Trenton, N.J. He was 89. Born in La Coruña, Spain, Juan earned a B.A. in European literature at the University of Santiago, married, then worked in a law office. He taught for a year at the Academia Pasaje in Spain before immigrating to the United States. Juan soon was hired to teach Spanish at the Hun School in Princeton, N.J., and was there four years before coming to Choate in 1963. “He is totally devoted to his students and to making certain that they learn Spanish,” then-Headmaster Seymour St. John wrote a few years later. “He cares so much about it that they catch the spark, and although he holds standards very high, I have never known a student who did not feel he was fortunate in having worked with Mr. López.” In 1976, his department head commented that “For many good reasons, Juan has often been called the best Spanish teacher in America.”

my entire education, I never came across a teacher or professor who was more dedicated to teaching than Señor López. Whether you were a good Spanish student or struggled with the subject did not matter; he was always there to help.” Juan was honored many times in his Choate years. He was awarded the Ray Brown Chair, holding it until his retirement. The second Johannes van Straalen Prize, awarded by vote of the Student Council, went to him in 1987. The 1993 Brief was dedicated to him. That year, Language Department head Jean Topping said, “Thank goodness he chose to be a teacher rather than a bullfighter. Juan says there’s not much difference between the two.” He leaves his wife, Amalia García Gascón, 4 Marilyn Court, Lawrenceville, NJ 08648; a son, Antonio López ’74; a grandson; a sister; and a brother. A son, Juan López ’72, and a daughter, Angelique López, predeceased him.

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what a place to be …

Here are a few of our many offerings: THEATER ARTS INSTITUTE

Develop your theatrical and artistic talents in this 4-week theater immersion experience for middle school and high school students.


Create your own documentary short film or personal video in this 2-week introduction to documentary filmmaking.


Ignite your curiosity for the interdisciplinary fields of technology, math, computer science, and environmental science in this 2-week middle school program designed to empower young women.

INVENTION AND DESIGN LAB Design projects of your own choice in our state-of the art i.d.Lab in this 2-week middle school program.

this summer AT



Explore life-changing experiences of language immersion, intellectual discovery, and cultural exchange in China, France, Spain, and new this year, Morocco.

Follow your own path to discovery in our 2-week, 4-week, and 5-week academic summer programs for middle school and high school students. Join students from 38 countries and 28 U.S. States for a summer of intellectual stimulation with some downtime for fun!


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SCOREBOARD | Fall Sports Wrap-up

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The Choate Varsity Football team again finished the year on top with a 46-20 victory over Trinity-Pawling to win their third straight New England Class “A� Bill Glennon Bowl. At 29 wins, this is the longest unbeaten streak for Choate football.

Quarterback Walker Lott #18 scrambles for the win over Trinity-Pawling. Walker made the All-New England team.

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SCOREBOARD | Fall Sports Wrap-up


16:29 G R I F F I N BIR NEY ’ 1 8

Griffin Birney ’18 set the new school record with a time of 16:29 on the School’s fivekilometer course.

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Three teams also earned playoff berths in post-season competition: Girls Varsity Volleyball won the New England Championship, beating Taft 3–0 in the finals. Girls Varsity Soccer, seeded #2 in the New England tournament, lost to Loomis in the semifinals. Varsity Field Hockey lost to Kent in overtime in the NEPSAC Tournament quarterfinals. Boys and Girls Varsity Cross Country teams had solid seasons. BOYS CROSS COUNTRY Varsity Season Record: 5–2 Captains: Joseph P. Berrafati ’17, Amir A. Idris ’17 Highlight: 2nd place in Founders League and 7th at New England Championships; Griffin Birney ’18 set a new school record GIRLS CROSS COUNTRY Varsity Season Record: 2–4 Captains: Lauren C. Lamb ’17, Kendall R. Redlitz ’17 Highlight: Placed 2nd in Founders and 8th at New England Championships FIELD HOCKEY Varsity Season Record: 10–4 Captains: Alexandra M. Jarvis ’17, Cameron D. Leonard ’17, Claire C. Marshall ’17 Highlight: In playoffs for first time in six years; seeded (#7) lost to Kent (#2) in the NEPSAC tournament quarterfinals FOOTBALL Varsity Season Record: 9–0 Captains: Matthew T. Albino ’17, Samuel P. Blank ’17, Jake A. Kastenhuber ’17 Highlights: Undefeated in regular reason for third straight year; won New England Bill Glennon Bowl Game; five players earned All-New England recognition from NEPSAC

1 2

BOYS SOCCER Varsity Season Record: 10–5–3 Captains: Gavin K. Coulson ’17, Jack B. Hutchinson ’17, Lucas J. Lilley ’17 Highlight: Beat Deerfield GIRLS SOCCER Varsity Season Record: 16–2–1 Captains: Elise P. Cobb ’17, Lexy M. Cook ’17, Morgan E. Harney ’17 Highlights: Earned post–season berth; only one loss in regular season to Miss Porter’s; lost to Loomis in New England Semifinals

3 4

GIRLS VOLLEYBALL Varsity Season Record: 17–3 Captain: Jacquelin A. Kluge ’17, Olivia P. McColloch ’17 Highlights: League title; New England Class A title BOYS WATER POLO Varsity Season Record: 14–5 Captains: Omar I. John ’17, Stefan S. Kassem ’17 Highlights: Lost to Brunswick in Semifinal; beat Loomis in consolation game; placed 3rd at New Englands

7 9


6 12 1 Abdoulaye Diallo ’17 looks to convert on a direct

3 Kristina Schuler ’17 brings the ball down the

5 Senior captain Claire Marshall ’17 passes the

6 All-League and All-Tournament goalie Jake

kick from the top of the box against Trinity-Pawling. 2 Lauren Lamb ’17 – Girls Varsity Cross Country Co-Captain.

field in game against Kingswood Oxford. 4 Jackie Kluge ’17 serves the ball.

ball to a teammate in a game against Sacred Heart (2-1).

MacKenzie ’17 blocks a shot during a game against Brunswick.

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In this issue, children’s book author Jamie Lee Curtis ’76 pays homage to the millions of immigrants who have made this country what it is today; novelist Maria Semple ’82 explores familial and romantic love and loss, intellectual and creative birth, death and rebirth in her funny and tender new book; editor James Lenfestey ‘62 has compiled an anthology of bee poems to draw attention to the plight of the bee population; and novelist Alyson Richman ’90 uncovers the importance of place in her seventh novel.

This Is Me By Jamie Lee Curtis ’76 and Laura Cornell | Reviewed by Andrea Thompson

THIS IS ME Authors: Jamie Lee Curtis ’76 and Laura Cornell Publisher: Workman Publishing About the Reviewer: Andrea Thompson is the co-author, with Jacob Lief, of the book I Am Because You Are.

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Imagine you have to leave your home, never to return, with only one small travel bag. What do you fill it with? That question propels This Is Me, the eleventh children‘s book from Jamie Lee Curtis ‘76 and her illustrator, Laura Cornell, which pays homage to the millions of immigrants who have made this country what it is today. As the blackboard in Cornell‘s fictional classroom acknowledges, very few of us are natives: “Where did you come from? Because it wasn‘t from here.” Despite the recent presidential election, which thrust immigration into the center of a national dialogue, Curtis noted in an email interview that politics couldn‘t have been further from her mind. “I can promise you that was zero on my inspiration list,” she wrote. “I was inspired by the family histories, stories of the bravery that immigrants showed during their myriad crossings.” As with Curtis‘s previous books, This Is Me uses gentle rhymes and pop culture references to celebrate the idiosyncrasies of children, a viewpoint echoed in Cornell‘s energetically eccentric illustrations. The story begins when a teacher, displaying a suitcase, tells her charges that her great-grandmother traveled to this country with only this piece of luggage. She challenges the students to consider what they‘d pack in their own bag.

The list runs the gamut, from Legos to photos, from a grandfather‘s beret to a Katy Perry concert ticket. One child goes both high and low: “My USA Passport,/that makes me feel FREE/My Nintendo DS/ with my fav, Luigi.” This Is Me cleverly includes a pop-up suitcase on its final page, asking readers, “What would YOU take?” For her part, Curtis has listed a few items on Twitter: family memorabilia and photos, gifts from her children, two books – Go, Dog, Go and East of Eden – and a pin that reads “Love and Service” (it honors her yearslong sobriety). “Life is about service,” Curtis explained recently on the “Today” show. “It‘s incredibly important to remember that the country was founded on sacrifice, on bravery, on courage.” In its stirring conclusion, This Is Me reflects that heritage, exhorting its young audience to embrace their own immigrant histories. “Who you become/STARTS with your past,/family histories/ and stories that last./This great tide that brought you,/seeds ancestors sowed,/that took root inside you/and helped you to grow.”

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Today Will Be Different By Maria Semple ‘82 | Reviewed by Joanna Hershon ’90

TODAY WILL BE DIFFERENT Author: Maria Semple ’82 Publisher: Little, Brown and Company About the Reviewer: Joanna Hershon ’90 is the author of four novels: Swimming, The Outside of August, The German Bride and A Dual Inheritance. She’s an adjunct assistant professor in the Creative Writing department at Columbia University and lives in Brooklyn with her husband and family.

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On page 16 of Today Will Be Different by Maria Semple ’82 is a fully reproduced poem by Robert Lowell (for Elizabeth Bishop). Many readers may know this poem, “Skunk Hour,” as one that speaks to the poet’s impinging madness, as a searing elegy for the self. Including this poem with the protagonist’s handwritten annotations is a gutsy move that not only formally works wonders but also prepares us for the rules of this brilliant and highly entertaining novel. Which is to say: There shall be no rules followed here, except total authorial control. There will be no tangent too tangential, no reference too far-reaching. Hang on tight, Semple seems to say. Also, Loosen up! She’ll tell the story in her own time in her own way. Every novelist does this to a greater or lesser extent, of course, but Semple announces her power straight away. It’s thrilling. Readers of Semple’s splendid previous novel, Where’d You Go, Bernadette, will recognize the fierce wit of Eleanor Flood as similar to Bernadette Fox’s, as well as the thematic question: how does one reconcile past personal greatness with present agita and stagnation? But whereas Bernadette’s world is overtly madcap, Eleanor’s is ultimately a more vulnerable one; there’s a stronger emotional current here. The novel starts with Eleanor’s vow: “Today will be different.” As Eleanor promises to be more present and loving, to take pride in her appearance and radiate peace, we readers brace ourselves for the inevitable opposite. With her angsty-sweet son Timby begging off from the Galer School (clearly far too much fun to skewer to include only in Where’d You Go, Bernadette), she heads to her saintly surgeon husband’s office and realizes he’s not where she thinks he is. Eleanor and Timby go in search of the truth and thus the day unfolds. Part one is entitled ”The Trick,“ which, we come to learn, refers to Eleanor’s reflexively manipulative behavior, in order to endear her to another. Eleanor explains: “Anytime I get into a one-on-one situation, especially if there’s something at stake, my anxiety spikes. I talk fast. I jump topics unexpectedly. I say

shocking things. Right before I push it too far, I double back and expose a vulnerability. If I see you about to criticize me, I leap in and criticize myself.” This could be a blueprint for Semple’s authorial voice. What she doesn’t come out and say but which is true nonetheless: It’s more fun my way. In addition to the Lowell poem and annotations in Eleanor’s hand, packed into this novel are a fully illustrated graphic novel, separate illustrations, changes in point of view, and small and large mysteries to be solved throughout the story. As we progress through one day in Eleanor’s current life, we travel across the years and geographic locations of her interior life. Seattle and New Orleans (and to a lesser extent, Manhattan and Aspen) are so deliciously drawn; I wanted to stay in each place longer and uncover more and more detail. I defy you to find a better scene set in Costco. I could smell the cold cream and hear the creaking floorboards of the backstage Broadway dressing rooms where Eleanor’s actress mother removed her makeup and prepared to come home. Bracing are the sea winds blowing off the water in the Olympic Sculpture Park. Eleanor, on the greatest hits of outdoor sculpture: “Taking in the joyful mix drawn together by a common enjoyment of art, I couldn’t help but think: rich people, you gotta love ‘em!” This story of familial and romantic love and loss, of intellectual and creative birth and death (and possible rebirth) is razor-sharp, desperate, hilarious, and tender. Without giving away too much of the plot, I will say that Eleanor has a sister: a gorgeous hot mess named Ivy. When Eleanor witnesses her sister in a new environment, she observes, “Ivy’s frailty was still there, but without the undercurrent of unpredictability … One might say she’d grown into her frailty. The South was a good place for that.” At the heart of Today Will Be Different is, in fact, a question of frailty: just how frail or how strong are the bonds of love? Does the plot even matter? I would follow Maria Semple anywhere, and you will too.

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If Bees Are Few: A Hive of Bee Poems Edited by James P. Lenfestey ’62 | Reviewed by Benjamin Small

IF BEES ARE FEW Edited by: James P. Lenfestey ’62 Publisher: University of Minnesota Press About the Reviewer: Benjamin Small is head of Choate’s science department.

The humble bee, of which there are more than 20,000 species, is a well-studied biological subject. That we understand much about their intricate navigation and communication systems, as well their complex community structures, is a testament to the powers of observation and science. Yet beyond their fascinating science, bees are used as symbols and metaphors. Whether admired for their industrious hard work, coveted for their sweet honey, or feared for their sting, bees are often written of and well too for these tiny, seemingly insignificant insects are crucially intertwined with our own existence. The pollination of most of the world‘s agriculture depends on many thriving colonies of these tiny insects. But, as most who have paid attention to the news of the last decade will know, bees are in trouble. As environmentalist Bill McKibben writes in the Foreword, “we ignore [bees] at our own peril.” World bee populations have declined dramatically in recent decades, and a variety of culprits are suspect, from mites, pesticides, and genetically modified crops to climate change. The metaphoric canary in the coalmine, bee populations suggest that things are out of balance in our world. Ultimately it is likely not only one cause but a variety of environmental pressures that have driven bee populations to decline. With this global collapse as a backdrop, editor James Lenfestey ‘62, who spent a brief time in the 1970s as a beekeeper, has collected a wide-ranging anthology of bee poems spanning more than 100 poets in order to draw attention to the bees‘ plight. Including works from Emily Dickinson and Ralph Waldo Emerson to Sherman Alexie and Virgil, this collection of poems pays homage to the honey bee, the carpenter bee, the leaf-cutter bee, the ground bee, the worker bee, and the queen. Tribute also goes to the farmer, the beekeeper, the hiker, and the relaxing flower-gazer lying in a field of clover on a warm summer day. In this collection you will find sweet words capturing pollen-laden legs, the sipping of spring flowers, and the warmth of the sun

on awakening wings. Poetic buzz captures bee flight, the sun-worshiping waggle, and the painstaking task of building the thousands of hexagons that make a working comb. A lovely collection, these poems span the gamut from more lengthy pieces in Old English to flighty thoughts of only a few lines; simply, the anthology is organized alphabetically by author. Interestingly, there are poems from the perspective of the beekeeper, the enraptured observer, the flower, and the bee itself. Picking through the collection one stumbles on uncountable gems like this from Emily Dickinson: The pedigree of honey Does not concern the bee; A clover, any time, to him Is aristocracy. Reading this assortment from a hammock strung between cedars last summer, I was inspired to gaze more carefully at the wildflowers beneath me, to slow down and listen to the tiny sounds of nature, and to not indiscriminately shoo away the tiny pollinators that landed on me for a rest. Not every poem resonated, but to quite a few I found myself smiling and nodding, highlighting, and rereading the delicious phrasings of words and images. Afterwards, I purposefully left a corner of my yard unmowed, so that the daisies and buttercups could flourish and perhaps attract a few more striped buzzers. Lenfestey collected this anthology to express his own “reverie about bees” and to “plead their case.” Surely assembling this compilation was a labor of love akin to collecting from a vast field of flowers. The collection is a wonderful opportunity to be reacquainted with these tiny examples of fidelity and integrity; surely the complexity of a working bee colony is worthy of both scientific study and poetic reverie. In the Afterword, noted entomologist Marla Spivak implores, “When we nourish bees, we nourish ourselves.” If Bees Are Few will similarly nourish the soul.

A GESTURE OF WORDS Author: John F. Foster, former faculty Publisher: CHB Media

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The Velvet Hours By Alyson Richman ’90 | Reviewed by Courtney Jaser

THE VELVET HOURS Author: Alyson Richman ’90 Publisher: Berkley About the Reviewer: Courtney Jaser is a librarian at the Andrew Mellon Library.

THE HIDDEN IVIES Authors: Howard Greene P ’82, ’05 and Matthew Greene Publisher: HarperCollins

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Inspired by the mysterious true discovery of an apartment in Paris that had been untouched for 70 years, The Velvet Hours tells the story of the woman who lived there, Marthe de Florian. Basing this, her seventh novel, on the clues left in Marthe‘s apartment about who she may have been and how the apartment became a time-capsule, Alyson Richman ‘90 creates a captivating fictional account of Marthe and her granddaughter Solange, two parallel stories in separate time periods about finding connection in unexpected places. Marthe is the center of this engaging novel about a unique woman who was able to explore her curiosities about the world, while remaining largely isolated from it. Marthe was born into poverty and in her early years, becomes pregnant and gives birth to a boy whom she gives up for adoption. Not long afterwards she finds her way into the arms of aristocrat Charles, who provides her with an apartment, an allowance, and his deep affection. Although she remains formally uneducated, Marthe self-educates through her love for the arts. Through her particular affinity for Asian art, she befriends a local shop owner who provides her with ample opportunities to increase her collection. Many of these artifacts are found in her apartment 70 years later. Enter Solange, 40 years later, a young woman who lost her mother and was having difficulty connecting with her father after their loss. He introduces Solange to a grandmother she did not know she had, Marthe de Florian, her father‘s birth mother. Marthe and her

WHAT THEY DO WITH YOUR MONEY Authors: Stephen Davis ’73, Jon Lukomnik, and David Pitt-Watson Publisher: Yale University Press

son were distant, her existence only becoming known to him on his 18th birthday. Regardless, he instinctually felt that she and Solange would find comfort in one another. As a writer, Solange listens eagerly as Marthe recounts tales of love and loss, aiming to use her stories as material for a future novel. Marthe‘s need to give maternal affection and Solange‘s need to receive this type of affection create a complementary relationship. As World War II approaches, we are carried through the anxieties and struggles of war. Hoping to learn more about her mother, Solange befriends a book store owner and his family who are able to provide insight into her mother‘s identity. While comforting in many ways, some of this new information puts her at increased risk given political climate. Solange also develops a romantic interest of her own, another connection that comforts her in the aftermath of the loss of her mother. As the story progresses, the mysteries begin to unfold. We learn why Marthe‘s apartment was found untouched for 70 years, how a portrait of her by Italian portraitist Giovanni Boldini came to be displayed in her apartment, and how she managed to live on her own with no visible means to support herself. Solange‘s mysteries about her mother and her identity also unfold. An adept storyteller, Richman taps into timeless and universal themes of love and connection, while also engaging us as we seek answers about the puzzling circumstances created by the discovery of Marthe‘s apartment.

POPPY’S PURPOSE Author: Marie Betts Bartlett ’75 Publisher: G. Boreas Publishing

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Why I Teach by harriet blanchard My earliest memory of a day that changed my life was Wednesday, September 9, 1959, and I remember it as though it were yesterday. That was the day I entered room 4 of the Squantum School – first grade – the big leagues. Kindergarten had been OK, but from the moment I saw the oversized Sally, Dick and Jane primer, I was hooked on books. And I wouldn’t be read to; I would do the reading. Then I met Miss Rabinowitz and knew I wanted to be a teacher. I never wavered from that dream. Fast forward to September 1977, my arrival for the beginning of the Choate Rosemary Hall academic year. The school that welcomed me was still working out some of the kinks from the relatively recent merger of its Greenwich and Wallingford partners. The 1978 Commencement would be the first combined one. I was the Director of the laboratory nursery school and a child development teacher. What I had absolutely no appreciation of, however, was that I had not stopped being a student. When people occasionally ask me how it is that I chose to stay at one school for my entire career, my answer is simply, ”Why would I leave?” Where else could I have tried my hand at so many different things, to have expanded my interests and my knowledge, to have grown in myriad ways?

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Challenging and rewarding years in the Dean’s Office and Residential Life Office consumed me during the ‘90s, but by the time I moved to the Teaching and Learning Center in 2003, I thought I’d probably made the last big change. The TLC was fairly new, the position meshed well with my pre-Choate Special Ed work, and fit with my interests in neuroscience and cognition. But then in 2006, Cyrus Cook, the then-English department chair, asked whether I’d be interested in covering a term of English 100 so that a colleague could teach a new English elective. That was an offer I never saw coming, but I didn’t waste a second before saying, “Sure!” And I love the English classroom; it uncovered a passion I did not know existed. Don’t think that was the final chance I had to learn. In September 2013, I received an email from Director of Curricular Initiatives Katie Jewett, and in the Subject Line space was written: ”Harriet, are you feeling spontaneous?” To my astonishment and delight, it was an offer to attend a conference run by Charles Fadel of the Center for Curriculum Redesign held at the Organisation of Economic and Co-operative Development in Paris (as in France, not Maine). I sat next to the deputy minister of education for Sweden; cooperative learning had never been so good. Ideas gushed, cascaded, splashed, and swirled from minds that were extraordinary. Ideas based on hard neuroscience, on long-standing respected theory, but discussed and debated from a wide range of cultural perspectives. In the mid–20th century, Alvin Toffler wrote, ”The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” Choate Rosemary Hall understands this need for prudent, creative innovation and adaptation. A great example of this is the Journalism course that is now being offered. Rather than focusing on content (because no one can keep up with even the new information that has sprouted just while you’ve been reading this), the students will work in teams and on their own to develop their skills of critical thinking, research, analysis, communication, collaboration, metacognition, ethics, persuasion – invaluable tools for learning and living today and in the future. So things and people change. Happily, though, what has remained constant during my tenure have been the generosity, talent, and dedication of my colleagues (the best friends a person could have), the wisdom and commitment of the administration, and the spirit, intelligence, and courage of our students. No one has ever disappointed me at Choate, and I relish the time spent with all I live and work with, but it is the students who are the reason I get up in the morning, and they repeatedly take my breath away with their vigor, insight, questions, and certainty that all is possible. Excerpted from a talk given by faculty member Harriet Blanchard to the Choate Rosemary Hall Board of Trustees.

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choate rosemary hall

COVER Portrait by Tom White. Daily life in Cuba.

Reunion MAY 12–14, 2017

2’s & 7’s Let’s celebrate!

Faculty traveled last summer to El Nicho waterfalls in Cumanayagua, Cienfuegos province, Cuba. (See story on p. 22.)



Choate Rosemary Hall Bulletin is published fall, winter, and spring for alumni, students and their parents, and friends of the School. Please send change of address to Alumni Records and all other correspondence to the Communications Office, 333 Christian Street, Wallingford, CT 06492-3800. Choate Rosemary Hall does not discriminate in the administration of its educational policies, athletics, other school-administered programs, or in the administration of its hiring and employment practices on the basis of age, gender, race, color, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, genetic predisposition, ancestry, or other categories protected by Connecticut and federal law. Printed in U.S.A. CRH161110/17.5M

Classes ending in 2s & 7s: This Spring is your chance to Editorial Offices T: (203) 697-2252 F: (203) 697-2380 Email: Website: Director of Strategic Planning & Communications Alison J. Cady Editor Lorraine S. Connelly Design and Production David C. Nesdale Classnotes Editor Henry McNulty ’65

Communications Assistant Britney G. Cullinan Contributors Kenneth G. Bartels ’69, P ’04 Harriet Blanchard Allyson B. Bregman Lorraine S. Connelly P ’03, ’05 Joanna Hershon ’90 Seth Hoyt ’61 Courtney Jaser G. Jeffrey MacDonald ’87 Kevin A. Mardesich ’87 Benjamin Small John Steinbreder ’74 Andrea Thompson

Photography Casey Brooke Jessica Cuni Sarah V. Gordon Taylor Holland Lauren Martini Ross Mortensen David C. Nesdale Kevin Pataky Ray Ross USA Hockey Tom White

relive memories and spend some time with the people who helped create them. We are planning an exciting slate of events, but the weekend won’t be complete without you. For more information go to:

Don’t miss it!




333 Christian Street, Wallingford, CT 06492-3800



Change Service Requested

Original proposed site for Memorial House, Richard Rummell, c 1919. See Remarks from Alex D. Curtis, Headmaster on page 3.

“All Choate was an evolution.” – FORMER HEADMASTER GEORGE ST. JOHN

The Choate Rosemary Hall Bulletin is printed using vegetable-based inks on FSC-certified, 100% post consumer recycled paper. This issue saved 101 trees, 42,000 gallons of wastewater, 291 lbs of waterborne waste, and 9,300 lbs of greenhouse gases from being emitted.

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In this issue:

PRO SPORTS: Alumni Demonstrate a Passion for Endurance

CUBA: Now Open for Exploration

A RECOLLECTION: Edward Albee ’46 Comes to Choate

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Choate Rosemary Hall Bulletin | Winter '17  

The Magazine of Choate Rosemary Hall

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