Page 1

A Home of Their Own

Soldiering on in Iraq Page 8

Staff Editor Kathleen C. Kenny Associate Editor Kathleen McDermott

Climate in the Classroom Page 30

20th Straight for Speech and Debate Page 22

Congratulations to the Alumni of the Year Page 38

Contributing Writers John Coyne ’05 Len DeFino ’09 Nicolene Emerson James C. Farrar ’59 Allie Greco ’08 Ashley Hanson ’08 Noah Hirshman ’05 Kathleen C. Kenny Tricia King ’10 Kathleen McDermott Jeremy Melbye ’07 Will O’Brien ’09 Grace O’Rourke ’09 Brian Pestotnik ’08 Braeden Quast ’10 Brittany Razek ’08 Hallie Rybka ’08 Andrew Shibley ’08 Arlene Smith Amy Torgerson ’08 Brooke Marie Witter-Jarvis ’10 Maria Young ’08 Editorial Assistants Bernadette Coffey Norman Friedman Robert Kumazec III Bridget McGinty '02 Arlene Smith

Fall & Winter Reviews Page 53

Photography John Bashian ’70 Neal Busch Nicolene Emerson James C. Farrar ’59 Michael McDermott Kevin Reeves Michael Spear Design/Production Canale Studio, Inc. Printing Oliver Printing

Seaworthy Survivors Page 27

Director of Development James C. Farrar ’59

Dear Parents, We send this magazine to college-age graduates at their parents’ homes. Please forward this to keep your son or daughter informed about GA.

Director of Annual Fund Mary Kate Farrar Vega ’93

Sponsored by the Congregation of Holy Cross

G i l m o u r A c a d e my M a g a z i n e

CONTENTS Features A Home of Their Own . . . . . . . . . . . . . Soldiering on in Iraq . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Tenor of Our Teachers . . . . . . . . . . Irish Society Tips Its Hat to Headmaster

Alumni . . . .

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.4 .8 .12 .17

AlumNews . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34 Alumni of the Year . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .38 Lancer Spotlights . . . . . . .34, 36, 41, 42, 44, 47 Catching up with Far-Flung Friends . . . . . . .48 An Invitation to Alumni Parents . . . . . . . . .51

Speaker Series

Lancer Athletics

Midwifing a Vision for Women . . . . . . . . . . .18 Educating the Heart: A Moral Compass Building a Better Body Image . . . . . . . .20 Come On, Snakes and Snails . . . . . . . . .21

Fall Review . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . It’s a Wrap for Ray Sharnsky . . . . . . Net Gain for the Lancers . . . . . . . . . Winter Review . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A Courtly Conquest . . . . . . . . . . . . Lineman Picks University of Virginia Swimming With the Big Fish . . . . . .

Campus 20th Straight for Speech and Debate . . . . . . Lessons Learned From the Lost Boys . . . . . Students Offer Their Own Take on Black History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Seeing Double . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Seaworthy Survivors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scanning the Earth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Ardor of Our Art Medalists . . . . . . . . . A New Twist to the Old Music Recital . . . . Conquering Climate in the Classroom . . . . The Monarchs’ Marathon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Fledgling Partisans Primed . . . . . . . . . . . . Sixth Graders Slam Dunk History Day . . . .

.22 .24

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.53 .54 .55 .57 .59 .60 .60

Michael Joseph Kiley ’52 . . . . . . . . . . . John Malcolm Pennington ’71 . . . . . . . Brother Gerald Comeau, C.S.C. . . . . . . Sister Rita Ferry, H.M. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Gilmour Extends Sympathy to Families

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.62 .62 .63 .64 .65

Memorial .25 .26 .27 .28 .29 .29 .30 .31 .32 .33

A Home of W Their Own “The new residence not only will provide an enhanced living space for Religious, but it also will serve as an anchor connecting Gilmour more visibly with the Congregation of Holy Cross for years to come.” Brother Robert Lavelle, C.S.C.


hat’s old is new again is an adage that applies to Holy Cross House. Built in 1924, the 14-room Tudor-style house was the original Gate House for the Drury estate, now Gilmour Academy. This spring, following major reconstruction of what was once the caretaker’s quarters, Holy Cross House will become home to five Holy Cross Religious; its storied past recast to reflect the Holy Cross presence at Gilmour. “The new residence not only will provide an enhanced living space for Religious, but it also will serve as an anchor connecting Gilmour more visibly with the Congregation of Holy Cross for years to come,” said Gilmour Headmaster Brother Robert Lavelle, C.S.C. “The Congregation founded Gilmour and continues to be a strong presence on campus. The new residence is a way to recognize the meaningful and important role the Congregation’s Brothers and Priests have played in Gilmour’s growth and development.” After the Congregation of Holy Cross purchased the estate and founded Gilmour Academy, the Gate House – the entrance to the estate – was converted into living quarters for Gilmour students and was named Vincent Hall after Brother Vincent Pieau, one of the founders of The University of Notre Dame. The building underwent another metamorphosis and opened its doors as

the Baxter Middle School for seventh- and eighth-grade boys in 1974, remaining classrooms until 2002 when students moved into the new Lynn and Michael Kelley Middle School. Since then it has served as a storage facility and office. The new tenants – Campus Minister Father John Blazek; Brothers Dan Kane, Religious Superior; Robert Kelly, Pastoral Ministry Associate; Richard Keller, Service Brother Robert Kelly, Mark Frantz ’65, Program and Residential Life Associate; and Anthony Brother Richard Keller, Michael Caito ’87, Jorae, Technology Associate – are all familiar faces Brother Anthony Jorae, and Brother Charles Smith around Gilmour and all members of the Congregation of Holy Cross. Each will live in a private suite that includes a bedroom, sitting room, bathroom, washer for storage and a new heating and air conditioning and dryer. “It is good that the building is being system. Holy Cross House is 4,500 square feet, renovated and brought back to use,” said Brother excluding the garage, porch, and basement, and Charles Smith, C.S.C., Physical Plant Coordinator. “It has new plumbing, electricity, insulation, and drywall. will be good housing for the Brothers and Father John.” Hardwood floors are in the common living areas and Brother Robert Kelly, who has lived in Tudor House for all other areas have stone tiles or carpeting. “Upstairs 30 years, expects there will be some adjustments to the trim details are very simple and elegant,” said moving, but many advantages too. “When we want to Project Manager Dave Wager. be by ourselves with other Religious in our community, Outside, a private landscaped terrace on the north we will be,” he said. The suites side of the house overlooks Tudor will be wired for computers and “Symbolically as a Gate House Gardens. “The outdoor living cable TV. The new residents will space is enhanced with the inclusion House it anchors the transfer some of their furniture of a new set of French doors in the religious life and culture dining room and a restored screened from Tudor House, and new items will be added. Gilmour Parent of Gilmour. The presence porch area,” said Michael Caito ’87, Richard Warren, CEO of Warrenarchitect of Holy Cross House. of the Brothers and Father the Chaney Office Furniture Inc., has Both areas will lead to the terrace. donated chairs and other furniture. John is a part of the Outdoor lighting and landscaping Four of the suites are on the Academy’s everyday life.” will complete the exterior, and one second floor and one is on the of the original copper coach lights first for easy accessibility. “I think Michael Caito ’87 will be used outside the chapel. the best part of moving from “The renovation will bring this Tudor House to Holy Cross House architectural jewel to life as a will be an increase in the feeling of religious landmark in the community,” Mr. Caito said. community living,” said Brother Anthony. Principal of City Architecture, Mr. Caito attended The Holy Cross Religious will share common living Gilmour throughout high school. As a Gilmour student, areas – a living room with a gas-burning fireplace, a his history class was in Baxter Middle School in a first dining room, a small kitchen with new cabinets and floor classroom. “I fondly remember the fluorescent appliances, a foyer, a chapel/study, a screened porch, lighting, wood paneling and drapes, all of which were and a three-car garage that can be converted into a still intact when I visited the building in August 2006,” sixth suite if needed. There also is room for a guest he said. Mr. Caito studied drafting and architecture at suite on the second floor. “After 38 years of living in Gilmour under the guidance of Resident Artist Joseph Tudor House, and parking in Tudor Circle, the luxury Turkaly, whom he credits for his success. of a garage will be, for me, something special,” said When Mike Caito was working with Gilmour Brother Dan Kane. “Additionally, as a religious Trustee Mark Frantz ’65 on a condominium subdivision community, we will be able to enjoy common rooms in Kirtland, they discovered they had two things in we’ve not had before: a meditation room, a dining common: a love for English Tudor architecture and a room, an enclosed porch, and an outside patio.” shared experience as Gilmour graduates. Mr. Caito also The house includes a partial basement and an attic found out that Mr. Frantz, Gilmour Chairman Jerry



A Home of Their Own (continued) Murphy ’64, and Brother Robert Lavelle, also a Trustee, shared a vision to create a home on campus for Holy Cross Religious. The residence not only would give them privacy, but also would free additional room in Tudor House for possible administrative space. To offset costs, Mr. Frantz paid the professional fees for architectural and administrative services, and Mike Caito donated his personal time to the project. Mr. Caito points out that Holy Cross House, Brother Robert Lavelle and located on Cedar and Michael Caito ’87 SOM Center Roads, is in a prominent location on campus. “Symbolically, as a Gate House it anchors the religious life and culture of Gilmour,” he said. The presence of the Brothers and Father John is a part of the Academy’s everyday life, he added. “The renovated house is really beautiful and the privacy is just wonderful,” Father John said. “It will be nice to have community meals in a home atmosphere.” He believes that the residence offers a much greater home environment than their space in Tudor House. “It will give the Religious a campus space to relax and enjoy each other and not have to be on call 24/7.” In August of 2006, Mr. Caito met with the three Gilmour Trustees to evaluate the functional needs of Holy Cross House. They agreed that it must be designed with flexibility should its residential needs change. Although the building is sound, it has seen considerable wear and tear over the years, combined with additions and alterations to convert it into classrooms. “The building is more than 80 years old. It had been heavily used and needed renovation,” noted Brother Charles. City Architecture was chosen for design, construction documents, and interior design from concept to completion, Mr. Caito said. Dave Wager was hired as Project Manager and assisted in selecting a contractor. “The goal was to find an


established high-quality contractor who not only knew how to deal with old historic homes, but also had the passion to meet the challenges Holy Cross House presented,” Mr. Caito explained. Kevin Russell, owner of Dustin-Hadley Company, was named contractor. The challenges were many: building a house to accommodate additional residents; converting the classroom back into a house; making the house accessible for those with disabilities by incorporating an elevator; and reconfiguring the layout for the five suites using the existing stairways and some of the windows. The builders also had to grapple with many issues related to commercial and residential building codes and inclement weather. Besides this, the historic slate roof had to be dismantled and reinstalled slate by slate, Mike Caito said. About 15 percent of the slates that needed to be replaced were salvaged from buildings of the same era. “We put down a high-tech ice guard product, replaced any wood that was rotting, and added new copper flashing,” said Dave Wager. Visitors to Holy Cross House will be greeted to a replica of the Gate House door with a special leaded glass design featuring the Holy Cross seal in royal blue. As part of the effort, stone from the Chagrin River adorning the outside of the house was meticulously Brother Robert Kelly restored and cleaned. The walls and Mark Frantz ’65 of the house are 12 inches of solid stone and concrete. “Outside of a castle, you probably wouldn’t see something like that,” Mr. Russell said. The stone walls were so thick it was hard to cut through them for new windows. The windows were replaced with energy-efficient models that are historically accurate. The renovation team used old photos of the Gate House and blueprints to recreate the original structure. “With the addition of double-paned windows and a little more insulation, we have a warm and quiet living area,” Brother Anthony said.

Throughout the house, all of the faux wood paneling and fluorescent lighting were removed. Downstairs most of the oak woodwork has been preserved. “The first floor was restored back to its former interior with refinished wood floors, plaster, woodwork, and paneling, and the three fireplaces got a slight facelift,” Mike added. While restoring the woodwork, Kevin discovered some names of former students “engraved” in the wood; he left a few for posterity. “Maybe some day, an alum will come back and see his name etched there and feel guilty. Or maybe not,” he quipped. One of the stone walls in the first floor suite that was part of the 1970s addition was deliberately left uncovered as a reminder that a portion of the home is part of a newer era. To add texture, the builders exposed a brick wall that had been paneled leading up to the back stair. The three-car garage, once a classroom, has reverted to being a garage. Although the estimated construction cost for the renovation is $600,000, it would be hard to rebuild the Gate House for anything close to that. “Today, the Holy Cross House might cost well over $2.5 million if it was built the same way,” Mr. Caito commented. “A major portion of the support for the renovation project has been funded through the generous help and leadership of Mr. and Mrs. Mark Frantz ’65, Mr. and Mrs. Nicholas Howley, Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Seikel ’55, and Mr. and Mrs. Alexander Somers ’78,” Brother Robert said. “We are grateful for their generous support in helping with the renovation costs.” As Father John and the Brothers prepare to move into their new home in early summer, they do so with the blessings and support of the Gilmour Community – especially two alums who spent considerable time in the

building as students. Jim Farrar ’59 and Mark Young ’92 think it is great that their old stomping grounds will become Holy Cross House. Mr. Farrar, Gilmour’s Director of Development, warmly recalls his days as a senior living in Vincent Hall when the dormitory had about 22 residents and featured a smoker and lounge area. “We had study hall Sunday through Thursday from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. where the garage is,” he said. Attorney Mark Young, President of Gilmour’s Alumni Association, attended Baxter Middle School from 19861988. “Because the building was relatively small, it provided a nice learning atmosphere for seventh- and eighth-grade students,” he said. The alum likes the idea of the residence being adjacent to, but separate from, Tudor House, the focal point of the school. “Holy Cross House is a fabulous building with great traditions,” Jim Farrar concluded. “It is a gateway to Gilmour and the first thing you see when you come to campus. It will be a great place for the Brothers and Father John to live.”



Soldiering on in Iraq General General David David H. H. Petraeus Petraeus and and Brian Brian Lasher Lasher ’79 ’79

If there must be trouble let it be in my day, that my children may have peace. Thomas Paine


ilmour alumni who have been deployed to Iraq have a front row seat to history like few others. While their responsibilities vary, their dedication and commitment are unwavering in their service to their country. Gilmour Magazine caught up with several alums via email about living in Iraq. They shared their impressions, adjustments, and the challenges of being an active soldier in the U.S. Military.

Brian Lasher ’79 U.S. Navy Commander Serving a one-year tour of duty, Brian works at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad doing what he calls government capacity-building – political and economic development. “We work to encourage the different groups to work toward reconciliation and to support religious toleration,” Commander Lasher explained. Prior to serving in Iraq, Brian was a reservist working on a joint staff at the European Command in Germany and was attached to the Navy Crisis Action Team at the Pentagon. He described his pre-Iraq combat training as a two-week version of Army boot camp with firearms training on the M-16 rifle and M-9 pistol. Brian views the Iraq people for the most part as genuine but says it can be difficult to establish trust because they are in survival mode. “It is a tragic land


and everything here is complicated,” Brian noted. On the morning Brian arrived in Iraq, a rocket hit 100 yards away from where he was sleeping. He lives in a trailer with a roommate and says that helicopters flying late in the night make it hard to sleep, but he has no complaints about the meals in the mess hall. He works 14-hour days during the week and 12-hour days on the weekends, so there is no time to relax, but the hardest adjustment is being away from his family. The first thing he plans to do when he returns to the States in July is kiss his wife Julie and hug his children, Mary and Timothy. The thing that most surprised him about the country was the brutality of criminals who use children and mentally disabled people as suicide bombers. “They kill a hundred times more Muslims than Americans,” he said. After graduating from Gilmour, Brian earned his bachelor’s degree in history and German from Allegheny College. He received a master’s degree in national security affairs from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, and one in strategic studies from Army War College. Brian believes that it will take at least a decade or two before determining whether or not the war was successful. “The long-term solution is to improve the government so the people’s needs are addressed and so change can be accomplished peacefully and not violently,” Brian said. To him, “The issue is not whether this war was justified to begin with, but whether we can help bring about an alternative to the tyranny that has existed throughout the Middle East.”

Cookie Caper

T Patrick Kearney ’03

Patrick Kearney ’03 Sergeant in U.S. Army and Combat Medic Last November, Sergeant Kearney began his second tour of duty in Iraq, which is expected to last 15 months. He has received the Bronze Star with Valor for heroism under fire in combat and is currently working outside Baghdad. An article published in January in the Colorado Springs Gazette addressed the preventive approach to medicine he and the Fort Carson Third Brigade Combat Team were taking to reduce violence and insurgency. Their efforts were part of a larger Army initiative to move away from defense and focus on outreach. In the article Patrick stated, “The last time, I had to get used to people coming up to me on the street and I couldn’t help them. This time my mission is to help them.” Erica Urban Chabalko ’01 First Lieutenant, U.S. Army Medical Service Corps Because the Army’s mission is to train and mobilize troops for war, Lieutenant Chabalko contends that she and her fellow soldiers are always preparing for combat. In 2005, when she received her degree from the U. S. Military Academy at West Point, Erica became the first alumna from Gilmour to graduate from a military academy. “Every day you have to be alert and aware of your surroundings because we are in a combat zone, and that can wear on you,” she confided. She admitted to feeling very vulnerable when she was on a dismounted patrol. Erica not only has to worry about herself, but about her husband Justin, who patrols the streets of Dora, one of Iraq’s most dangerous neighborhoods. “Training is ongoing and specific to deployment,” explained Erica, who has been in Iraq since

agalongs, Thin Mints, Do-si-does, and Somoas might be fine for most, but to avoid a cookie crisis, Trefoils are a must for Gilmour alumni in Iraq. The time-tested cookie has become the true favorite as Gilmour faculty, staff, students, alumni, and families have rallied behind troops through the Girl Scout Hometown Heroes project, which donates Girl Scout cookies to U.S. Armed Forces around the world. Earlier this year, 778 boxes of cookies were flying across oceans and deserts to tantalize the school’s graduates stationed in Iraq. “In the cookie of life, friends are chocolate chips,” Salman Rushdie said, and Gilmour took this message to heart. Students collected almost $4,000 for the cookies to spread some cheer across continents. “It is a small gesture on our part, but sends a big sign of support,” said Upper School English Instructor Kathy Kenny, who coordinated the effort. The cookies were shipped in special wrapping to prevent infestation and damage, she explained. In February, Gilmour students raised funds during a “Wear Red” Friday and signed cards for the soldiers to accompany the cookies. Cookie recipient Brian Lasher ’79, a U.S. Navy Commander, was wildly enthusiastic about the gesture. “Twenty boxes! Wow,” he said. “That was a very gracious and thoughtful undertaking.” He added, “They will find a good home – at least a temporary one – until they meet their fateful end, and I will be sure to let everyone know they came from Gilmour.” 9


she has little spare time, Erica enjoys working out and does word jumbles. She will miss one month of the torrid summer heat when she comes to the States for Environmental Leave, which used to be known as R & R. “We are required to carry a weapon at all times, and when you go outside the wire you must wear your ‘full battle rattle,’ consisting of body armor and helmet and a full basic load of ammunition,” she said. She expects her tour in Iraq to conclude next February. The experience has made her even more proud to be an American, and she is inclined to continue serving in the military. Erica said, “I am seeing firsthand what we are doing for this country.”

Erica Urban Chabalko ’01

mid-February. Her training covered everything from combat stress and mild traumatic brain injury to cultural awareness and Rules of Engagement. Because she spends most of her time on the base, when she encounters Iraqi women Erica is struck by how they are always surprised to see another woman in uniform. She finds it disconcerting to see women walking around completely covered and subject to the control of men. “To know that women here are second-class citizens and that security concerns prevent many people from attending school is depressing, given the value Americans place on education,” she observed. The living conditions for the Iraqi people can be very challenging, Erica noted. When there is power, rolling blackouts occur in some neighborhoods, and the infrastructure for sewer and waste removal is sometimes lacking. What surprised her the most was all of the trash. “Iraqis are taking responsibility for these problems and are making efforts to improve security,” she said. The medical corpsman finds the Iraqis to be generous. “They always bring me food and gifts. I think my husband would agree that their concept of hospitality is unparalleled.” The Gilmour graduate wears two hats over there as brigade adjutant and brigade medical planning officer. Previously, she was a company executive officer responsible for logistics maintenance and the training of 186 soldiers, and a linguist manager in charge of the interpreters. As an officer, Erica has her own room in a concrete building and mostly eats in a dining facility. Although


Matthew Bacik ’97 Former U.S. Army Captain Life after Iraq has had some interesting turns for Matt Bacik. In March, he was featured in Business Week in an article about soldiers transitioning from Iraq to business school, and last November he took the field for the Cleveland Browns coin toss as part of the Wounded Warrior Disabled Sports Project. Matt is currently an Investment Banker with Merchant Capital in Montgomery, Alabama. After earning a degree in economics from the U.S. Military at West Point, he served in Afghanistan and Iraq in the 3rd Ranger Battalion, Special Operations, where he led soldiers during three combat tours. He also managed programs outsourced by the U.S. Army and was involved in peace-keeping and diplomatic missions. Matt said that he feels a sense of loyalty and gratitude to his fellow soldiers and for the Iraqi people, commenting that he was impressed by the dedication of some of the Iraqis he met. “It was challenging to manage local expectations as our mission required us to hand out soccer balls one day and deliver lethal force the next,” he said. His most vivid memories are his “comrades who didn’t come home.” The recipient of three Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star, the Army captain was wounded three times in combat, losing his right leg below the knee from a roadside bomb in 2005. “It took about 18 months to get used to running on the prosthetic leg,” Matt noted. Adapting to the Iraq climate took about two weeks and in his spare time he read and worked out. “There was an adjustment to targeting and being targeted,” Matt said, adding, “There were a lot of characterbuilding situations.” After returning from Iraq, Matt

earned his MBA from Auburn University, and he now lives in Auburn with his wife Deborah and daughters Sophia and Madeleine. He told Business Week that at Auburn “it was challenging to figure out what people valued and what ideas motivated different people. In the military, there is a common set of beliefs everyKelly Drake Torres ’01 one shares at the same level.” with her mother, Helen While he believes Iraq offers opportunity for its people, Matt emphasizes that there is still much work to be done. Kelly Drake Torres ’01 Lieutenant JG (Junior Grade), U.S. Navy Kelly Drake, who was active in mock trial, speech and debate, and theater as a Gilmour student, is now serving in a military theater. She volunteered to serve in Iraq and is working in high security communications in Baghdad. Since 2005, the lieutenant had been stationed at Ft. Gordon in Augusta, Georgia, where she trained in survival skills and weapons, and she was deployed to Iraq in December. Kelly became interested in joining the military in high school partially because her grandfather had a career in the U.S. Air Force. Kelly received a ROTC scholarship from Tulane University, where she earned a B.S. in neuroscience, and she hopes to go into language training in Arabic or Farsi (Iranian) language. In 2005, the alum married Army Captain James Torres, who trained as an Apache helicopter pilot. They have yet to be stationed in the same place, but they were able to see each other on weekends when Kelly was in Augusta and he was stationed in Savannah. “I think her biggest adjustment now is being far away from her husband,” her mother Helen Drake said. Kelly lives in a trailer that houses officers and works 13 or 14 hours a day all week. When she does have spare time, she reads and watches some of her favorite movies. One thing the lieutenant says she will not miss when she returns to the States in June is the blowing sand that seems to be everywhere.

Brent Vlcek ’01 Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps In mid-March, Gilmour graduate Brent Vlcek left Camp Lejeune in North Carolina for Iraq. It took a week to get there through Germany and Kuwait, and then a sandstorm kept him from reaching base for another week. Still, the Marine Corps lieutenant is undeterred by a few wrinkles in his plans. After earning a bachelor’s degree in intelligence studies from Mercyhurst College in 2005, Brent entered Officer Candidate School in Quantico, Virginia, but was sidetracked by a severe ankle sprain in boot camp. During an eight-month interval, he was a contractor for the FBI, where he investigated the names of suspected terrorists for FBI agents. He returned to the Marines in 2006. This is his first tour of duty in Iraq, which Brent views as an adventure. He is a platoon leader for a light armored reconnaissance platoon, according to his father Larry Vlcek. Brent’s tour is expected to last until October. “I think he decided to become a Marine for the challenge,” his father explained. Prior to his deployment, he underwent desert training with live munitions near Palm Springs, California, and learned to do house-to-house searches using a Brent Vlcek ’01 full Iraqi community simulator with Arabic-speaking people manning the houses. “Brent was anxious to serve in Iraq and felt that it was his duty. He is interested in a career in intelligence, and the military provides excellent experience for that,” Mr. Vlcek said. When Brent is out in the field on an operation, he catches an hour of sleep here and there and eats MREs (Meals Ready to Eat), which used to be known as K-Rations. Although they are not his favorite, he told his family that the food served on base is excellent. When Brent’s father and his mother Lorraine went to see him off at Camp Lejeune, everyone was smiling, Mr. Vlcek recalled. “You could feel the camaraderie among the Marines. They were positive and wanted to serve. They were anxious to do their duty and come home. It was a very upbeat environment.”


The Tenor of O u “A

thousand teachers; a thousand methods,” states a Chinese proverb. Though teachers hone their own skills when enticing students to learn, some common threads emerge in their efforts to kindle their students’ curiosity and mine the depths of discovery. Patterns of patience, passion, and perseverance are among the prerequisites mentioned most often by some of Gilmour Academy’s finest teachers. Other important traits are expertise, energy, empathy, and enthusiasm; commitment, compassion, and communication skills; and adaptability and flexibility. Some felt called to teach while others stumbled into the profession. In tallying the sum total of their careers, the 10 Gilmour teachers featured on these pages have taught almost 15,000 students and, combined, have about 265 years of teaching experience. Throughout their years at Gilmour, they have remained true to the Holy Cross tradition that “. . . the mind will not be cultivated at the expense of the heart.” As trailblazers, they define what constitutes providing an excellent education while preparing students to become competent and courageous moral leaders. Here are brief sketches of their thoughts about teaching. Frank McCamley On his indirect journey from Armagh, Northern Ireland, to Gilmour in 1981, Frank McCamley taught English at Lancaster Royal Grammar School in England, “a school that evoked something between Charles Dickens and J.K. Rowling,” he quips. His high school English teacher tried to dissuade Mr. McCamley from following in his footsteps and, for a while, Frank was torn between being a teacher or a solicitor. Reading “Doctor Faustas” and hearing law described as a “mercenary drudge,” nudged him off the fence. “The prospect of haggling over property boundaries in rural Ireland wasn’t appealing,” he says. On the other hand, he claims, “Teaching is exciting, literature never stagnates, and writing can be vibrant.” That lofty perspective was not immediate, however. In England, Mr. McCamley lectured at a podium while students he dubbed “little more than scribes” diligently took notes, rarely challenging his ideas. When Gilmour became more student-centered, this tempered his own teaching style. “Simply put, I changed from being a supplier of information to being a catalyst for thought,” he says. He helps students sift through the barrage of media messages and images they confront daily to separate “truth and lies, quality and inferiority, the moral and the immoral.” The Gilmour English Instructor admits that when he sits quietly and listens to his students discuss literature he learns much from them. “Inevitably, in a seminar, some student will see an angle or detect a nuance that I had not


O ur Teachers considered, or write something so fresh that I wish I had written it myself,” he says. Over the years, he has learned that although standing before a captive audience can boost one’s ego, “teaching is not about performing intellectual cartwheels in front of a rapt audience.” He says, “The students are the performers, and teachers should simply prepare the stage for them so that they can perform expertly.” Rich Grejtak Although current students have greater distractions with text messaging, cell phones, and iPods than when Rich Grejtak began teaching at Gilmour in 1969, advances to improve learning outcomes make for “a far better pedagogy,” he believes. The English and Latin Instructor favors the longer blocks of class time, the emphasis on writing across the curriculum, and a reduction in rote learning that exist at Gilmour today. Mr. Grejtak was drawn to teaching by the Jesuit training he received in high school and college and notes that former English teacher and administrator John Gale was his mentor over the years. He once defined his philosophy of teaching for The Plain Dealer as being demanding and fair. “Demanding means challenging the students to strive to go beyond what they think they’re capable of,” he told a reporter. “To temper that, you must be fair, which means not overwhelming the student when you get into difficult material, but giving him or her support, guidance, and encouragement.” In paraphrasing a line

from a Jack Nicholson movie, the instructor says his students make him want to be better. They have taught him much about hope, humility, and humanity. From his perspective, teaching styles must evolve to reflect changes in education and incorporate powerful tools like the Internet. Gay Janis As a fourth-generation teacher, Gay Janis recalls her mother spending the summer rereading the Shakespearean plays that she would teach the following year and an old photo of her great grandmother’s classroom. “My mother was an excellent role model. She really cared about teaching,” says Mrs. Janis, Upper School Speech Instructor and Drama Director. She also was influenced by a former Cleveland Play House teacher who helped her overcome her shyness. Mrs. Janis is conscientious about helping students realize their inner light and gifts. She taught literature at Glen Oak School before it merged with Gilmour in 1982. She believes that in a constantly changing world, teachers, too, must grow and develop. Mrs. Janis refrains from the idea of a cookie cutter approach to teaching. “Students learn differently and have distinct talents,” she says. “It is a teacher’s duty to encourage each student to reach his or her potential and to learn what techniques work best.” Recognizing that students need individual practice and attention, Mrs. Janis notes that it can be a daunting task to distribute her time fairly. She sees her students as



partners in the educational process and has gained from their insight, remarking, “They fill me with optimism and hope for the future.”

tells them to keep an eye toward their education and what they want to do after school – to take care of their lives and to find a career.

Tiho Teisl Gilmour’s willingness to look at different teaching styles has been gratifying for Tiho Teisl, who joined the faculty in 1972. After college he had worked at a Gilmour soccer camp and loved its campus and atmosphere. As Dean of Student Life and Discipline, he coordinates the disciplinary process and assists in academic and student affairs, tracks and maintains attendance, and supervises student participation in school-sponsored events. Mr. Teisl started out at the Academy teaching Spanish and proctoring in the dormitory. He comes by his fluency in Spanish naturally, having spent his youth in Argentina after his family fled Yugoslavia during World War II. Today, he teaches Advanced Spanish Speaking and Composition in addition to being a dean. “I had some wonderful teachers in Argentina who opened my eyes to teaching,” he says. Initially, Mr. Teisl entertained the idea of a business career. “I quickly found out that sitting in an office day after day would not be very interesting,” he observes. “I wanted to be with students to teach and coach.” His teaching philosophy is simple: discover the level of skill each student possesses and summon the courage to meet him or her there so they both can move forward as a team. This requires that lessons be flexible and able to accommodate various learning styles. The veteran teacher claims that his students give him energy and keep him young – which is why he is still teaching after 36 years. For years, he has coordinated the annual humanitarian mission students make to assist people in Honduras. Mr. Teisl finds that Gilmour students are open and willing to share. He

Meredith Panzica It hasn’t been that long since Meredith Panzica was a high school student at Gilmour. “Coming back as a teacher after being a student has been an amazing experience,” says Ms. Panzica, who graduated from the Academy in 1999. The Lower School Religion Instructor returned to Gilmour in 2005. Although the student body is a little larger, she has found that the Academy remains a close-knit community and that Gilmour’s commitment to its Holy Cross mission is stronger than ever. Ms. Panzica comments that she is amazed by the faith and spirituality of her students, and this has prompted her to learn new things about her own faith. Having earned degrees from the University of Notre Dame as an undergraduate and graduate student, Ms. Panzica is thoroughly grounded in Holy Cross traditions. The idea of creating “a more humane and just society” resurfaced when she was a member of Notre Dame’s Alliance for Catholic Education. Through the program, the university’s graduates serve as teachers in Catholic schools with minimal resources, such as the one where she taught in Brownsville, Texas, for two years. “I view my service to Catholic schools as a vocation,” says Ms. Panzica. “It is an opportunity to use the gifts and talents with which I have been blessed to challenge and nurture students in their own spiritual, moral, and character formation.” She contends that adaptability is important because “those unplanned detours can turn out to be some of the most teachable moments.” The Gilmour grad strives each day to provide an atmosphere where students feel safe and comfortable, yet challenged.


Brother Ken Kane, C.S.C. If the “little red schoolhouse” – where one teacher taught every subject – were still around, Brother Ken

Kane, C.S.C., would fit right in. In an age of specialization, he has taught mathematics, religion, chemistry, physical science, music, art, culture, and drama. “Most of my colleagues who know me well would agree that I’m a two-humped camel in many ways – part arts and part science,” he says. Brother Ken, now a Science Instructor, began teaching at Gilmour in 1987. He has seen several of his former music and drama students become professionals. A firm believer in the importance of a diverse education, Brother Ken advises students to “work to keep your options open.” He discovered that after working more than 25 years in what he calls his all-consuming passions – music and drama – he began to burn out teaching those subjects. Fortunately, he had accrued enough credits to teach physics, and through a serendipitous turn of events, Gilmour was looking for a physics teacher. The selfdescribed timid, first-time physics teacher says that what started out as a challenge for him soon became a joy. For Brother Ken, teaching and learning do not work unless students sense that a teacher cares. He quotes the adage, “Students don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” He advises new teachers to be humble enough to realize that their best efforts may fall short at times. In looking back over 45 years as a teacher, he senses “a richness in my own life as a result of all those young people with whom I have been privileged to work.” Matt Lindley Having graduated from Gilmour in 1989, Matt Lindley knew “it was a place where the faculty really had a chance to make a difference to students and where the students would be willing to work hard.” Though the buildings and campus have changed over the last two decades, for him the Academy’s heart and spirit remain unchanged. Teaching runs in the family for Mr. Lindley, Department Chair and Social Sciences Instructor. His father taught at the Case Medical

School, his brother is a high school math and science teacher, and his sister teaches art in college. The alum favors a student-centered classroom with a lot of interaction when he teaches U.S. government and constitutional law. “Since I teach a class that revolves around current affairs, I want my students to be interested in what is going on in Washington,” he

says. Since joining the Gilmour faculty in 1997, Mr. Lindley has learned that “being a creative teacher takes a lot of energy.” Good communication with parents also is an asset should problems arise. He has great respect for students’ intelligence, noting, “I am amazed at how a student will have a totally different perception of an issue than I have, and often it’s more accurate and insightful.” Being a Gilmour graduate helped Mr. Lindley connect to the GA community. “The students like hearing stories of the old days – if you consider the 1980s the old days,” he jests. Barbara Vaughn Be ready for the unexpected is the advice Barbara Vaughn offers to fledgling teachers. “Things happen that were never covered in your education courses and probably never will be,” says the Lower School Physical Education



Instructor. Ms. Vaughn began teaching at Gilmour when it merged with Glen Oak. Between both schools, she is in her 39th year, and has taught at all three of the Academy’s schools. During her days at Glen Oak, Gilmour boys would take some phys ed classes at Glen Oak, and the girls took some classes at Gilmour, so when the schools merged, it was natural for her to want to teach at the Academy, she says. “Now that Gilmour is preschool through grade 12 it is like a family; everyone is concerned about the well-being of students, faculty, and staff,” she remarks. After summer stints doing retail and office work, which she disliked, and a job at a day camp working with children, teaching seemed to be a good fit. Two of her teachers in high school – one in phys ed and the other in chemistry – were influential in her decision to pursue teaching. “They worked with me and helped me get over my shyness,” she says. The teacher believes that all students can learn and tries to engage them in activities to develop new skills, get some exercise, learn teamwork, and have fun. Bonnie O’Leary Retirement seems to be just a notion to Bonnie O’Leary. When she completed a 30-year career with Shaw High School in East Cleveland, Ms. O’Leary began teaching English at Gilmour in 1999. As far as she is concerned, “students are students no matter their ethnic or socioeconomic background.” Actually, Ms. O’Leary and Gay Janis were fellow high school speech coaches. “We had always talked about my coming to Gilmour when I retired to work with the Speech & Debate Team,” she says. Today, Ms. O’Leary is an English Instructor and Drama Director in the Middle School. In addition to teaching, she directs the Middle School play and assists with the Academy’s speech team. Her students’ energy and desire to learn are what keep her coming to school every day. “I began at Gilmour in the ‘house on the corner,’”


she says. “My room was on the second floor and reminded me of the movie ‘Dead Poets’ Society.’ It was cozy and homey.” Her teaching philosophy has evolved over the years. She began teaching in the inner city because she believed she could make a difference. Inspired by the creativity of her middle school drama teacher and the energy and enthusiasm of her high school speech coach, Ms. O’Leary strives to make learning fun so that her students will want to do well. While advances in technology have been challenging, a stark change from the days of “chalk boards and ditto handouts,” she says they have brought the whole world into the classroom. Dave Pfundstein Back on his old turf, Dave Pfundstein ’93 began teaching at the Academy in 1998. As Lower School Guidance Counselor and Math Learning Coach, he knows firsthand the importance of being a good listener. “You have to be a good motivator not just once a week, but every day to get the most out of the students,” he observes. Happily entrenched at GA, Mr. Pfundstein is fulfilling his dream to coach basketball here as Boys Varsity Basketball Coach. In high school and college, he worked at basketball camps for youngsters and really enjoyed it. “I wanted to be a role model for young students,” he explains. English Instructor Kathy Kenny, who tutored him from seventh grade on, influenced his life and made him want to do the same for other students. His aim is to provide the kind of opportunities and resources that will help them reach their own goals and to become contributing members of society. Mr. Pfundstein says, “Students want to be successful, and if you push them a little, they respond well and achieve.”

Irish Society Tips Its Hat to Headmaster ive of the area’s leaders who trace their family roots


endowment has

to Ireland were honored in February in the shadow

risen to $40

of what was once Irishtown Bend, where immigrants

million. The

toiled on Cleveland’s railways, canals, and docks. Among

campus has

them was Gilmour Academy Headmaster Brother Robert


Lavelle, C.S.C., who has spent almost a half-century

greatly with the

preparing students to become competent and courageous

new $6.2 million

leaders determined to build a more humane and just

Kelley Middle School and Fine Arts Building and Our

world. The Irish American Archives Society celebrated

Lady Chapel; expansion and renovation of the Upper

this year’s recipients at a gala dinner at Windows on the

School and Lower School facilities; and the growth and

River in the Flats. The Irish American News noted their

development of the Academy’s athletic facilities, residence

“extraordinary contributions to the culture and lifeblood

hall, and Broadcast Media Center. Plans also are

of Northeast Ohio.” The four other recipients were Plain

underway for a new natatorium, gymnasium, and

Dealer Columnist Regina Brett; Sister Joan Gallagher,

residence house for Holy Cross Religious.

C.S.A., former Principal of St. Augustine Academy; Sheila

Prior to joining Gilmour in 1976 as Assistant

Murphy Crawford, Founder and Director of the Murphy

Headmaster and later serving as Acting Headmaster,

Irish Arts Center; and John Kilbane, Treasurer of North

Brother Robert was a Guidance Director at Archbishop

Shore Federation of Labor and Chairman of Local 310

Hoban High School in Akron and worked in development

Construction Employers Association Joint Apprenticeship

and public relations. From 1965 to 1975, he served the

and Training Committee.

school as a teacher, counselor, and administrator. He

The Walks of Life Awards, established in 1996,

held teaching and advising positions at Sacred Heart

recognize recipients’ contributions to the area and the

Military Academy in Watertown, Wisconsin, where he also

determination of their ancestors to realize America’s

was activities supervisor and dorm prefect. Brother

promise. Both of Brother Robert’s parents, Maude

Robert earned a bachelor’s degree in business education

Kilbane Lavelle and Michael Lavelle, immigrated to the

from St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas, and a

United States from County Mayo, Ireland, in the 1920s.

master’s degree in education and counseling from Kent

His father was a leader in the labor movement in

State University, with additional graduate work at the

Cleveland and his mother operated a restaurant. Brother

University of Akron. He supplemented his theological

Robert received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor Award in

studies at the University of Notre Dame, Boston College,


and Marquette University in Milwaukee. A native

During his 28-year tenure as Gilmour’s Headmaster, enrollment has increased from 323 students to 738 and

Clevelander, he is a Trustee of Gilmour and St. Edward’s High School, his alma mater.


S p e a k e r

S e r i e s

Midwifing a Vision for Wo m experienced some form of female circumcision, which often poses health risks during childbirth. It is a country where the risk of death in childbirth is among the highest in the world. In September, Kris addressed Gilmour students about her Peace Corps service, Monique, life for women in Africa, and her book “Monique and the Mango Rains: Two Years with a Midwife in Mali,” a memoir of her work there. The book is one of several options on the Academy’s reading list. Tom Helfrich, alumni parent and Gilmour Trustee, arranged for the author to talk to the students through his work with the Literary Ventures Fund. The nonprofit foundation supports new works of literature and helps get the books published and marketed. Kris wrote the book following Monique’s death in 1998 during childbirth, probably from undiagnosed hypertension. Kris earned an undergraduate degree in environmental science at Allegheny College. “I knew that the way I lived was not the way the rest of the world omething happened to Kris Holloway on the lived,” she said. Accepted into the Peace Corps, she way from college in Meadville, Pennsylvania, to was assigned to French-speaking Mali to plant trees graduate school in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Maybe and reduce erosion. There she also met her husband it was her experiences as a Peace John Bidwell, another Peace Corps “True education begins Corps volunteer in the West African volunteer. Despite her environmental with compassion and country of Mali, where she served training, Kris knew when she met from 1989-91. More likely it was one Monique that she wanted to work compassion begins in person in particular: a midwife named the heart.” with her. “I was blown away by Monique. “Now you will see the real Kris Holloway what she was doing,” she said. “It work of a woman,” Monique Dembele was clear that women and children told Kris the first time she assisted the had immediate needs, and I wanted midwife in the small rural village of Nampossela. to help secure funding for a birthing house.” Farmers and herders in the area earn the equivalent Remembering her mentor, Kris said that “Monique of $210 U.S. dollars a year. Most Mali women have had a sparkly, open-eyed look about her and a huge on average seven children; virtually all women have grin. She was short, stocky, and wicked strong and



o men in West Africa looked like a little battery pack of energy.” Monique often would work with her infant son strapped to her back. Although the midwife was just two years older than the volunteer and only had a sixth-grade education, her knowledge about reproductive health and childbirth was extensive. Monique’s sense of humor also helped offset the physical hardship of exhausting work, Kris said. Working alongside Monique, Kris weighed babies, assisted at births, and gave health care talks. More important, she witnessed how Monique was able to dispense hope by improving the lives of women and children in the face of arranged marriages and domestic violence in a country where women’s rights were negligible. “I didn’t realize how much she had taught me or changed me until my second year in the Peace Corps,” she said. When Kris returned to the United States, she earned a master’s degree in public health with a focus on maternal and child health from the University of Michigan. She is married and has two sons who were delivered at home with the help of a midwife. She kept in touch with Monique over the years and hosted Monique’s visit to the United States in 1992. Today, Kris is a development associate for the National Priorities Project, a nonprofit organization that

promotes social and economic justice. Kris and her husband returned to Mali after Monique died. She reflects positively on her work in Africa, believing that she supported Monique in the work she wanted to do and that perhaps Monique accomplished even more because Kris was able to serve as a catalyst for change. She began writing the book in 1999 when she returned from her trip to Mali to offer condolences to Monique’s family. Funds from book sales have helped educate Monique’s children and siblings and support Clinique Monique, which offers prenatal and maternity care. In meeting with Gilmour students, the author stressed the importance of exploring the world and connecting with people to learn that we are alike in many ways regardless of our different backgrounds. “Understanding and appreciating a culture comes from living together,” Kris said. “I lived in a hut in Mali like the other villagers and, like them, I was dependent on Monique for my health care, so the villagers had to care for me as well.” This kind of reciprocity leads to understanding the things we have in common. “True education begins with compassion, and compassion begins in the heart,” Kris said. “Attending a school like Gilmour, whose mission is to educate the heart and the mind, puts students ahead in learning to see others as human beings.”


Educating the Heart:

A Moral Compass Gilmour Academy Speaker Series


t is little wonder that teens today form their physical ideals in the pages of fashion magazines, television, and the Internet. These images provide a standard about how they are supposed to look to win the approval of their peers as they start to compare themselves physically to others. But body image is not about the way we look; nor is it about food, according to psychologist and author Erik Fisher. “It is about how we feel within ourselves.” A former Gilmour student who attended the Academy from 1980-82, Dr. Fisher is now a family therapist in Atlanta. He visited the Academy last fall to talk to Gilmour’s Upper School students about body image and eating disorders, a problem that affects five to 10 million girls and women in the United States and one million boys and men, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Returning to Gilmour, Dr. Fisher recalled his own feelings of being tall and scrawny in high school and his efforts to counteract this by becoming a chronic exerciser in college. He knows all too well the perils of putting the notion of ideal body size ahead of health. “I always wanted to be big and muscular,” the psychologist said. Lifting weights several hours most days landed him in the hospital for shoulder reconstruction when he was 22. The day before surgery he was still lifting weights. He had dislocated his shoulder so many times that he wore out the joint, and admitted the folly of continuing to play in a volleyball tournament despite a shoulder injury. “We pursue perfection to insanity,” he said. Dr. Fisher noted that eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia affect as many boys as girls, but differently. “Most men are socialized to look strong and most women to look good,” he remarked. By sixth grade, girls begin comparing the weight-related aspects of their bodies, but as they get older, they focus on muscle-related comparisons and physique. Men also worry about their weight, but not as much as women. Dr. Fisher received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from The Ohio State University and earned


a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Florida, where he studied sorority members and conducted research on the psychological development of body image, a precursor to eating problems. Secrecy and shame contribute to the severity of the problem. “Power is one of the key factors leading to body image issues and eating disorders and relates to the way we feel about ourselves or how we perceive ourselves in the context of the world,” Dr. Fisher maintained. In his talk, he also explored teasing linked to physical appearance and how it affects youngsters’ self-esteem. While at Gilmour, Dr. Fisher addressed parents about how they can work with their children to restore their sense of self-confidence and mutual trust through a more equity-based approach to parenting. He analyzed the concept of hierarchical models based on fear and love. In the former, we manipulate other people’s power to feel better about ourselves; with the latter, we learn to love and respect ourselves and others. He believes that power struggles in families can be curbed through an approach that allows each family member to retain a sense of his or her own power. In his book “The Art of Empowered Parenting: The Manual You Wish Your Kids Came With,” the author explores temperament, personality, and attachment in children and addresses the specific needs of nontraditional families led by single, divorced, and teen parents. “Your children are the most important teachers you will ever have,” he told the audience. “They are your guide, and they show you how you are doing through their behavior.” He advised parents to look at what their child is doing and then ask themselves the following questions: Did I teach my child that? Do I do that myself? Is my child reacting to something I need to be more aware of? Dr. Fisher’s visit was part of a series of family workshops and lectures called Educating the Heart: A Moral Compass, supported by the family of Michael Pender, a 1990 Gilmour alumnus who died the following year. His family established the speaker series in his memory.


here is no getting around it: boys are puzzling. Research shows important differences between male and female brains, not only in the composition of white and gray matter, but also in how the brain functions, said family psychologist Michael Thompson. “These findings have implications for the way we motivate, teach, and discipline boys,” said Dr. Thompson, who has spent most of his professional career researching the psychological and emotional needs of boys. “We need to understand boys on their own terms,” he told a group of parents, teachers, and alumni at Gilmour. His talk was part of a series of family workshops and lectures called Educating the Heart: A Moral Compass supported by the family of Michael Pender, a 1990 alumnus who died the following year. His family established the speaker series in his memory. In March, the psychologist published “It’s a Boy! Understanding Male Development from Birth to Eighteen,” a comprehensive guide for parents and his third book about boys. “We are not a blank slate in which culture, society, and gender are imprinted. We likely come into the world with a preprogrammed brain,” he noted. Not only does neurological research show that the brains of boys and girls are different, but also that the myelin that helps transmit nerve impulses develops later in boys. Frontal lobe development in boys is incomplete until they are 25 years old, compared to 22 for girls. Even from birth, boys seem to indicate brain vulnerability that nature and nurture influences, he said. While we can’t overcome nature, there is potential to influence the way boys are raised and to try to correct some common misconceptions about gender differences. Although baby boys and girls have more similarities than differences, boys are more emotionally vulnerable, but as boys grow up they are deluged with messages that they must deny parts of their emotional life. “We treat young boys as if they have less of an emotional life than girls, and we start to focus on another boy behavior – their greater physical activity,” he said. Parents tend to misread boys, he has found. Boys act out when they are disappointed in a relationship, withdrawing and becoming angry. They feel abandoned and show their fury in disruptive ways. “How we manage their lack of self-control and fury is crucial,” Dr. Thompson told the audience.

Human aggression peaks in both boys and girls at the age of 2 and then they begin to become more civilized. “Thank goodness 2-year-olds aren’t six feet tall. They would be truly dangerous,” the psychologist quipped. By 5, boys must get their impulsivity and aggression under control to succeed in school, Dr. Thompson said. Girls seem more organized and under control; they are able to listen and focus – tasks demanded at school. He believes that school is more problematic for boys. The trick with raising boys and girls, he said, is to figure out their temperament, what they love, and to support it. Mothers of young boys often ask about their readiness for school. Dr. Thompson recommends delaying kindergarten until around 6. Kindergarten is the new first grade, he explained. The nature of kindergarten has changed and it makes sense to hold boys back. The pressure is learning to read, and boys struggle with this. By the time they are 8 to 10, boys usually are no longer overwhelmed by school, but become fiercely competitive and upset with themselves if they cannot do something, he has found. The key issue becomes separation as boys get older and develop sexually, and boys tend to become private with their parents. The worst things mothers can do when boys start their growth spurt and their voices change is to back away from their sons, causing them to feel angry and ashamed, he said. They may feel abandonment, loss, and an inability to be perfect that is expressed in anger. “The job for all of us is not to be afraid of them,” he counseled. In his final caveat, Dr. Thompson warned parents against ducking the sexuality talk with their children. “You have to have the talk whether you want to or not,” he said. There is no right age to talk about sex, and the parent who is less uncomfortable with discussing it should do so. He suggested addressing the topic separately with boys and girls. Although children want answers from their peers, they want them in the presence of an adult who can validate the accuracy of the information. He recommended that parents talk at the child’s level, and refrain from over- responding to questions. When young people have questions about sex they don’t want the whole story, just the answer to the immediate question.


C a m p u s

O n / O r

A b o u t

20Straight th

for Speech and Debate


halk up another big victory for Gilmour Academy’s Speech and Debate Team. The team won the Northern Ohio District Championship in the Ohio High School Speech League for the 20th straight year in a 27-school tournament at Vermillion High School. Two Gilmour students were named district champions during the competition: Rachel Kenney ’08 in the Humorous Interpretation category and Bethany Byrd ’08 in Prose Poetry. Gay Janis, Gilmour’s Speech and Debate Coach for 21 years, received the Frederick C. Snook Award for coaching excellence. Mrs. Janis is the driving force behind the success of Gilmour’s team and is a major reason Gilmour ranks in the top one percent of the National Forensic League’s chapters nationwide. Fourteen Gilmour students were state qualifiers: Brenden Kelley ’08 and Nicholas Guy ’08 in Public Forum Debate; Alexandria Pilla ’09, Original Oratory; Matthew Smith ’08, Oratorical Interpretation, Lauren Martin ’08, Dramatic Interpretation, and Benjamin Christ ’08, Humorous Interpretation; and Natalie Pike ’11 Nathan Blevins ’08 in Prose Poetry. Two Gilmour teams were state qualifiers in the Duo Interpretation category: Brooke Marie Jarvis ’10 and Taylor Seay ’10 and Tom Reynolds ’08 and Grace O’Rourke ’08. In Student Congress, three Gilmour students – Andrew Pike ’08, Nathan Blevins ’08, and Alexis Antunez ’10 – were chosen to compete at state.


Lauren Flocken ’08

Nathan Blevins became the first Student Congress state champion ever at the Ohio High School Speech League state tournament March 1 at Medina High School. He competed against 136 other students for the honor. This is the first year for this category at the state level. Student Congress is a debate form that mirrors the kind of bill and resolution debates that take place in Congress. Nathan and his competitors were required to research and debate 65 pieces of legislation related to the environment, the war in Iraq, and U.S. foreign policy. The Gilmour student is a four-time qualifier to the state tournament in U.S. Extemporaneous Speaking, a three-time qualifier to the National Forensic League National Speech and Debate Tournament, and

four-time qualifier to the Tournament of Champions in Student Congress. “Being state champion is something that Nathan has wanted since the Ohio High School Speech League announced last year that there would be a Student Congress category added to the state tournament,” said Mrs. Janis. “Nathan has worked systematically to achieve his goal.” Andrew Pike was among the top 10 in Student Congress; his sister Natalie was a semifinalist in the Prose Poetry category. Bethany Byrd placed second in Prose Poetry. Matt Smith ’08 finished fifth in Oratorical Interpretation. Other semifinalists were Rachel Kenney, Alexandria Pilla, and Alexis Antunez. Tom Reynolds and Grace O’Rourke were quarterfinalists. Gilmour’s Speech and Debate Team took fifth place “Winning three out in the cumulative sweeps at state, where more than 1,200 students competed in 13 of three national categories. tournament slots is Gilmour took all three top slots at the National Forensic League National unprecedented in Qualifier for Student Congress March 15 our district.” at Gilmour. With eight schools and 50 Gay Janis students competing, Gilmour won all three of the qualifying spots to advance to the NFL National Tournament in Las Vegas in June. Like Congress, the category is divided into two chambers, the House and the Senate. Nathan qualified in the House and Andrew and Alexis qualified in the Senate. “Winning three out of three national tournament slots is unprecedented in our district,” Mrs. Janis said. “Coaches from the other schools noted that they were impressed with our students’ knowledge, preparation, and skills.” Other Gilmour students who qualified at nationals were Tom Reynolds, Grace O’Rourke, Brooke Jarvis ’10, Taylor Seay ’10, and Rachel Kenney. Gilmour’s Mock Trial Team also had a strong season. The school’s ace jurists were among students from eight schools who advanced to the regional level in the Ohio High School Mock Trial Competition at the Justice Center. Victoria Lopez Aldazabal ’09, Travis Martin ’09, and Kristen Scheid ’09 competed at regionals along with Alexandria Pilla, Kristin Vaughan ’09, Andrew Pike, Nathan Blevins, Nicholas Guy, and Brenden Kelley. All won their trials. Nathan and Brenden were named Best Lawyers for their individual trials and Kristen won Best Witness. The Cleveland Bar Association and the Ohio Center for Law-Related Education sponsored the competition, judged by local judges and attorneys. This year’s competition featured 4,000 students statewide in the mock trial program, which is the third largest in the nation.

Noelle Neiheiser ’09 Jamie Bergsman ’09

Natalie Pike ’11

Brooke Marie Jarvis ’10 and Taylor Seay ’10


C a m p u s

O n / O r

A b o u t

Lessons Learned From the

Lost Boys

Malong Mabior and Riley Asher ’08


“Some ask why we are called the Lost Boys of y name is Malong Mabior. I am one of Sudan,” said Malong. “We lost our families and friends, the guys from Sudan.” The simplicity of Malong’s opening remarks during a Gilmour our homes, and our things. We call ourselves brothers, but we came from different places.” Many of the boys convocation earlier this year sparked more than a little were attending herds and escaped to jungles when troops interest in what the Lost Boys of Sudan had to teach attacked their villages in Southern Sudan, killing two Gilmour students about courage, conscience, and caring. million people. “I left when I was 5 years old,” said The Lost Boys refers to more than 27,000 children who Daniel Mabuoi. “The attack came during the evening were orphaned or displaced between 1984 and 2005 from when I was at the playground, and I never had a chance a Sudanese civil war according to aid groups such as the to say goodbye to my mother or father. The soldiers International Rescue Committee. Of these, more than burned my house and little toys, but what could I do?” 4,200 live in the United States; 28 in Cleveland. A The boys made long journeys to relief camps in Ethiopia research paper on genocide spiked the curiosity of and Kenya surviving disease, starvation, and Eileen Lane ’08 and Riley Asher ’08 about encounters with wild animals. Few girls the plight of the Lost Boys. As a result, “Some ask why we are made it to the camps because they were they organized a visit by four of the young called the Lost Boys of raped and murdered or taken as slaves. men who fled their country and are now Amil Arop recounted his experience living in Cleveland. The Lost Boys spoke Sudan. We lost our when the Sudanese government and to the Middle and Upper School students militia attacked the villages, burning down about their experiences on their hazardous families and friends, houses and produce. As an 11-year-old, trek across deserts and jungle and met our homes, and our he left with just the clothes on his back, one-on-one with students at lunch in the things.” walking from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. until Lennon Board Room. Malong Mabior those fleeing could find shelter under the “We convinced the 12 students in our trees and a source of water. During the senior English class and other Gilmour three-month journey to Ethiopia, he did not seniors that we should invite the Lost Boys know what had happened to his family. Majier Deng, to speak at convocation,” Eileen said. “We thought Gilmour students would gain greater awareness of what is who left his country when he was 8, sang “Amazing Grace” in Dinka during his presentation and told the going on in the world, and the visit would help the Lost audience that the American media had told the story on Boys see that our students really wanted to hear their television and encouraged their resettlement in the United story.” In recalling her initial interest in the Lost Boys, States. Malong talked about returning to Sudan last year, Riley said that she was inspired when she read “They only to find that his father had been killed in 1989. “My Poured Fire Upon Us From the Sky” about the genocide mom was crying with tears of joy,” he said. “She didn’t in Sudan, written by three Lost Boys. Eileen noted that believe that I was still alive.” the students had studied genocide among the Kurds and When the Lost Boys started arriving in Cleveland in the Cambodians as well as the Holocaust as part of the 2001, they were fortunate to have an advocate like Sister class. They were required to follow up their research by Mary Frances Harrington, C.S.J., on their side. The Lost writing and submitting editorial pieces to the media.


Boys call her mother. Sister had previously worked with refugees from Bosnia and volunteered to assist the Lost Boys living in Father Albert House in St. Agnes/Our Lady of Fatima parish. She took them around, helped them get adjusted to their new city, and accompanied them on their appointments. She admires their courage to go on and live productive lives without their parents and other family. Gilmour students collected funds to help the Lost Boys send money to family members still alive in Sudan. All were amazed by the young men’s accomplishments – attending school, earning degrees, and working full-time to repay the $800 cost of their passage to America. The Gilmour students also learned a lesson about faith and trust in God through hardships. “You always put God as Number One,” Daniel Mabuoi told the students. “People ask me if I am a believer. I say, ‘What do you think?’”

Riley Asher ’08 and Eileen Lane ’08

Students Offer Their Own Take on Black History in Young Leaders lthough most students study U.S. history, a majority lack a basic understanding of events that helped shape Telling Old Stories, social justice advocate Joan Southgate shared her own the nation, according to the National Assessment of experience walking more than 500 miles along the Educational Process (NAEP), which assesses students’ Underground Railroad in 2002 to honor her ancestors academic performance. Less than half of the 12th graders who traveled that route. could link Martin Luther King, Jr. to the Montgomery Gilmour students examined issues such as the Hough bus boycott, NAEP noted. To help counter this apathy, and Watts riots, the Montgomery bus boycott, and other Gilmour Academy students wrote and performed history people and events that shaped the Civil Rights Movement readings and dramatizations to celebrate Black History and black history. Some students filmed the event; others Month at Young Leaders Telling Old Stories. The event, rewrote the Birmingham Southern Christian Leadership sponsored by Restore Cleveland Hope, Inc., celebrates Conference pledge promoting a nonviolent movement; and Cleveland’s historic anti-slavery past. Gilmour students one group distributed one-page reports to attendees. Four joined others from AKAdemy, Temple Israel Ner Tamid Gilmour students read a poem related to black history on Youth, and the Euclid Avenue Congregational Church NewsChannel 5 on Presidents’ Day – Jamie Bergsman, School for the multicultural event, which also featured Noelle Neiheiser, Raysa Sylvester, and Kristen Scheid. music from the Cleveland Heights High School Gospel Dr. Sabik was attracted to the project because she believed Choir. the students would learn a part of history Dr. Cindy Sabik, English Instructor at that might be unfamiliar to them and meet Gilmour’s Upper School, explained that people they might not normally meet. “I the project is designed to help students especially liked the idea of students getting get beyond their comfort zone and their voices out in the community,” the investigate a historical topic of interest teacher said. “It is safe to hand a paper to to them. The junior class has been your teacher, but when you must present studying race and civil rights by reading your research about a community before by Toni Morrison’s works and discussing that community, it makes you think twice Spike Lee’s documentary “Four Little Girls.” Brandi Lawrence ’09, about what you are saying.” Before inviting Gilmour students to participate Samantha Johnson ’09, and


Katherine Hasler ’09 25

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Seeing Double I

n the case of the Flocken twins – Janice and Lauren – you just have to look at a picture of them with their cobalt blue Gilmour pep rally shirts and matching blue eyeblack to catch their fun-loving flair. The fraternal twins look somewhat like sisters, but they are hardly mirror reflections. The graduating seniors Janice and Lauren Flocken ’08 both participated in the Academy’s Catalyst Program, which unites students with professional mentors from industry, academia, government, and health care, so they can gain real-world research experience. “This is the first time Catalyst has had twins,” said Deanne Nowak, Catalyst Program Director. Last summer, the Flockens worked in the same research group, but not the same lab, at Case Western Reserve University’s Center for RNA Molecular Biology. “They are very different in their backgrounds and interests,” noted Dr. Nowak, Dean of Institutional Research/Curriculum Coordinator. Janice leans more toward math, science, and engineering, and Lauren is more focused on the humanities. Lauren’s externship with Dr. Kristian Baker, Faculty Research Instructor at the center, focused on how cells can destroy messenger RNA (Ribonucleic acid) used to make essential proteins. Working with CWRU Assistant Professor Dr. Mark Caprara, Janice examined fungal infections that can be fatal for those with compromised immune systems and a gene product necessary for fungal survival that could lead to antifungal medications. Lauren’s work was to create strands of messenger RNA (mRNA) for an experiment to better understand the


process in which mutated mRNA is rapidly decayed, so it does not produce a shortened abnormal protein. She did research on cells that potentially can destroy mRNA required for essential proteins. “Better understanding could help to develop therapies for just about any genetic disease,” Lauren said. She commented that the experience improved her critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Janice worked to create a yeast cell coded for a specific protein, which the researchers would then try to destroy. The protein she worked with is found in the mitochondria of yeast cells and is necessary for mitochondrial function. Mitochondria contain genetic material for cell metabolism including conversion of food into energy. Lauren is undecided about her career plans, but Janice is interested in medicine, possibly working as a surgeon or therapist specializing in orthopedics. “I love sports medicine and the whole field fascinates me,” Janice said. The two sisters, both confident and independent, have taken trips to explore colleges together. Janice will attend St. Mary’s College and Lauren will be at Colgate. They played volleyball and ran track at Gilmour and are involved in the Cotillion Society of Cleveland. Despite being called the wrong names periodically, Janice claims being a twin works to her advantage on occasion, especially when the twins were in the same class. If a teacher looked at Janice and called her Lauren, she appeared oblivous when she didn’t know the answer.

Seaworthy Survivors S

“They learned how to turn a boat over if it capsizes, empty out the water, and get back into it safely,” said Katy Perse, Physical Education Instructor in Gilmour’s Middle and Upper Schools.

eventh and eighth graders in Gilmour Academy’s Middle School know better than to rock the boat. The students have been training for their own version of the Survivor Challenge. Members of the Lake Metroparks Aquatic Academy visited campus during physical education class and brought kayaks and canoes to teach students what to do when a boat capsizes and how to recognize apparent hypothermia. Students also learned about the four key parts of a boat – starboard, stern, port, and bow. Coinciding with this, two representatives from the U.S. Coast Guard informed the class about the importance of life jackets and water safety, and they shared some of their heroic lifesaving stories. The students spent time in the water in Gilmour’s natatorium wearing life jackets so they could practice the proper way to enter and exit a boat. “They learned how to turn a boat over if it capsizes, empty out the water, and get back into it safely,” said Katy Perse, Physical Education Instructor in Gilmour’s Middle and Upper Schools. The 85 students in survivor training were taught to recognize the signs of hypothermia – shivering, disorientation, lack of coordination, lethargy and fatigue, and slurred speech. They were advised to wear a life jacket, remain calm if the boat capsized, minimize heat loss by keeping knees to chest to protect the trunk of the body, and huddle with others by staying in a tight circle. They also were told not to attempt to swim unless they were close to safety and to remain clothed. “These are important things to know because so many of our students are on boats throughout the summer living near a large body of water like Lake Erie,” Ms. Perse said. As part of the Survivor Challenge, the students participated in team-building activities that required physical and mental skills to work with peers to complete tasks. In one exercise, they were asked to haul a bucket to another spot using a series of ropes while keeping it off the ground; in another, they transported a bucket of “toxic waste” and had to tip the contents into a different bucket. Teams also competed in the “toxic river” activity, transferring their members across the river using two carpet pieces before their opponents did. If a team member fell into the water, they had to start all over again. The physical education instructor noted that the curriculum introduces students to outdoor pursuits and physical activities that they can enjoy throughout their lifetime.


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ilmour eighth graders left a paper trail spanning threetenths of a mile in the Middle School for a science project scanning the Earth’s geologic time. Creating the timeline, however, did give them a better grasp of just how long 4.6 billion years is. “The project was not as easy as it sounds,” said Jennifer Ault, Middle School Science Instructor. “The students worked hard and the timeline looks good, but they really did not have a clear idea of how long 4.6 billion years is until they had to figure it out themselves.” Mrs. Ault described the project as being designed to develop a scale model to accurately gauge their understanding of geologic time. The eighth graders were asked to figure out how to do an accurate representation of the Earth’s history so that anyone could comprehend how long the planet has existed. Then they had to determine the scale their work needed to be before dividing into groups to plan the period they had to display. “One of the big challenges was how to make the display interesting when four-fifths of the timeline was only rocks and volcanoes and virtually no living things,” the teacher noted. In creating the timeline, the students marked the first signs of life – single-celled organisms such as bacteria – the first continent, Rodinia, and the Cambrian explosion when different multi-cellular species increased. They represented the Paleozoic era when plants and fish began to appear, animals moved to land, and flying insects emerged. One group focused on the Permian extinction when 90 percent of “The project was devised to all living things disappeared. Others depicted the Mesozoic Era, which began help students learn geologic 200 million years ago when reptiles and dinosaurs ruled, flowers appeared, and seas rose and fell, and ended time and design a scale 65 million years ago when the dinosaurs model to accurately gauge became extinct. Lest one think that the Middle their understanding of it.” School was covered in paper, the students Jennifer Ault actually took a practical approach to the timeline’s magnitude. The stretch of paper from the rotunda to English Instructor Bonnie O’Leary’s office covered 540 million years, and the earmarks of the Earth’s first 4 billion years were spiraled around the rotunda.




ilmour Academy’s David Mirando ’12 received a Silver Medal Award at the 28th Annual Cuyahoga County Regional Scholastic Art Exhibition January 13 at the Cleveland Institute of Art. His scratchboard called “The Reel Deal,” depicting a reel of film used in motion pictures, was one of only 41 middle school pieces accepted. “Scholastic tends to be a difficult show for middle school work to be accepted,” said Matthew Vanek, Art Instructor for Gilmour’s Middle and Upper Schools. “With hundreds of entries, only 40 to 50 pieces are accepted at this level.” Jae Won Kim ’08 won a Silver Key Award for a digital portrait that applied techniques to create a fine art interpretation. He also earned a Certificate of Merit for his digital photo of an interpretive action shot of a soccer game.

Two other Gilmour students were honored with Certificates of Merit. Laura Buntemeyer ’08 was recognized for a digital portrait stressing emotion and personality. Rachel Noall ’10 earned a certificate for a traditional black David Mirando ’12 and white candid portrait of a simple moment in a child’s life. The winning entries for the Scholastic Art Exhibition were on public display at the Art Institute. Among the nearly 1,700 entries, 74 received Gold Key Awards, 97 won Silver Keys, and 132 earned Honorable Mention Awards.



here was a time when students who held music recitals performed live on stage with their instruments, but not necessarily anymore. Gilmour Academy student John Hanna ’08 presented a digital music recital on campus featuring his own compositions in February. He showcased a sample of his music pieces and discussed how and why he wrote them during the 30minute recital. “Everything John played was composed using a computer with a piano and instruments such as guitar, drums, and bass,” said David Kilkenney, Gilmour Music Instructor. “John has immense musical talent.” The recital included an expansive repertoire including techno (high-energy music incorporating electronic sounds), reggae (a Caribbean sound with

elements of Calypso and rhythm and blues), hip-hop, and dance music. Each of John’s pieces has a specific purpose or theme. Some have all electronic sounds; others have live instruments. All of the music was prerecorded in the school’s band room, practice rooms, and the Broadcast Media Center. The center includes 12 keyboards to digitally record and edit music tracks. Electric pianos can be connected to multiple pieces of software to create music. The computers work together and operate multiple programs simultaneously. John came to Gilmour in sixth grade and has taken two computer music courses with Mr. Kilkenney. The Gilmour student belongs to a ska band called the Skatastrophies, which uses saxes, brass, drums, bass, and guitars. Ska music, which originated in Jamaica, has an upbeat tempo with elements of Calypso, rhythm and blues, and jazz. The student is undecided about whether he will pursue a career in music, but knows that music will be a lifetime passion.


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Conquering Climate in the Classroom “S

“It is my goal to help them think like scientists.” Yen Doan


ome people are weatherwise, some are otherwise,” Ben Franklin said. Gilmour third graders have learned to take a little of the guesswork out of nature’s unpredictability. Twenty-two students spent a month learning to make clouds and cold fronts, popping coins off bottle tops to see how cold air expands and escapes, and learning to predict January juggernauts. In the classroom, the third graders made rockets and popped corks to study air pressure, floated packing peanuts in cold water to observe air differentials, poured cold milk into warm water to simulate cold fronts, and browsed through the daily newspaper to follow weather patterns. The students also benefited from some pretty hefty help with the project. Meteorologist Gary Garnet from the National Weather Service walked them through some basics on weather patterns, water cycles, and cloud formations. He visited the class along with meteorologist Jason Nicholas from NewsChannel 5, who shared his expertise on weather and its fine-tuned instruments. “I see my students reading weather books in their spare time and discussing weather with their classmates,” said Yen Doan, third grade Math and Science Instructor. “It is my goal to help them think like scientists.” Minneapolis, Memphis, Sarasota, and Seattle were some of the cities students practiced on to master their weather forecasting skills, Ms. Doan said. Each of the young meteorologists selected a city to follow and graphed high and low temperatures for a week. They were asked to forecast the next day’s weather and to write their predictions using weather terminology. They tapped into the Internet to collect weather data and read weather maps and then churned out charts that captured their work as weather experts. The teacher said that the projects helped students learn to navigate resources outside the classroom. The young forecasters did not view their assignments simply as academic exercises. In fact, they have become quite astute at predicting possible snow days.


he fluttering of a butterfly’s wings can affect climate changes on the other side of the planet,” says environmental scientist Paul Erlich. Gilmour Academy Lower School students recently have embraced the monarch butterfly for its mighty migration patterns and its power to bridge bilingual studies and science. Third through sixth graders in Spanish Instructor Joyce Ware’s classes are learning about the science of migration bilingually, and they are developing a cultural connection with children in Mexico as part of The Journey North program, an online science education project in which students learn about wildlife migration and seasonal change. In the fall, the students created paper butterflies to replicate the monarch, which has wings that spread out like an exotic gold fan tinged in black around the edges and adorned with white polka dots. The visual boldness of monarch butterflies can snap one to attention instantly, and the Lower School students deftly captured the colorful insects in their pictures. Their replicas were destined to simulate the migration of the monarchs from the United States and Canada to sanctuaries in Mexico. Students constructed their butterflies with a greeting and message in Spanish. Then the butterflies were mailed some 780 miles to The Journey North headquarters in Wayzata, Minnesota, to “roost” where the butterfly cargo is prepared for its migration to Mexico. Butterflies from one school in Taiwan won the distinction of traveling the farthest. Not only does Ms. Ware teach about the life cycle of the insect in Spanish, but the students also see and hear Spanish speakers on website videos. Lower School students watched streaming videos of the forest where the monarchs land, listened to the voices of the townspeople teaching the pronunciation of the vocabulary the students used in classroom lessons, and visited the one-room school in the Mexican town that houses the sanctuary, the teacher explained. Early in the school year, the Gilmour students received scientific data and tracking maps from Journey North plus Gilmour’s longitude and latitude location, so they could express the information in Spanish and learn to locate points on the map. Ms. Ware also used the project to teach her students the difference between field observations, migration sightings, and changing weather patterns. The students learned to express the information in Spanish. “Each week in September and October, we examined the projected migration map and discovered that our butterflies must pass through Texas to get to their destination,” she explained. All the butterflies from the 1,100 schools in the United States and Canada that participated flew down together as their living counterparts would do. As part of the class, Gilmour sixth graders narrated and performed a poem for students in the lower grades, and skits were performed that addressed issues like what would happen to the butterflies if it snowed in Mexico, or if the milkweed plants they rely on to survive were diseased. The Gilmour butterflies were returned in the spring with messages from the Mexican students who received them.

The Monarchs’ Marathon


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Fledgling Partisans Primed for Primary Election C

ommunications guru Marshall McLuhan once said, “American youth attributes much more importance to arriving at driver’s license age than at voting age.” In an effort to rectify that, students at Gilmour Academy’s Lower School became experts on everything from political soap boxes to ballot boxes as they prepared to vote in their own Primary Election Tuesday, March 4. The “polls” were open from 9:00 a.m to 2:00 p.m. with close

ballots featured the candidates’ photos so even the youngest voters could participate. Ballots were color-coded by gender to determine how many boys and girls voted for each candidate. Throughout the day, math classes tallied the votes and posted the results the following day on a bulletin board at the Lower School. Senator Barack Obama was the clear winner with 83 votes, followed by Senator John McCain with 60. Senator Hillary Clinton captured 32 votes and former Governor Mike Huckabee received 5. Mrs. Browning said the students actively prepared to make an informed choice. In producing a video of the candidates’ stances on health care and education, four students held up masks – pictures of the actual presidential candidates – and presented their positions on the two issues. The film was then transferred to a DVD and Gilmour’s humanities The ballots featured to 200 students voting. teachers played it in their classes. Based on the idea that it is never Because the third graders study the candidates’ photos too soon to prime young people to Ohio government, Mrs. Browning so even the youngest vote, kindergarteners through sixth wanted to integrate the election “voters” could participate. graders cast their ballots in eight process into the social studies private voting booths with curriculum, and then the project cardboard dividers set up on tables. was extended for the Lower School. Third- and fourth-grade volunteers verified that each Other Lower School teachers involved in the election student was registered to vote. Political posters, American were Humanities Instructors flags, and voting stickers from the Election Board set the Laurie Gajda and Sandy stage. “We didn’t actually promote any candidates,” said White and Math and Lower School Humanities Instructor Kim Browning. When Science Instructors Meg students completed their paper ballots selecting one of Anderson, Yen Doan, and four candidates – Obama, Clinton, McCain, or Huckabee – Christine Kacsala. they dropped them into a sealed ballot box. The


Sixth Graders Slam Dunk History Day C

leveland’s civil rights busing controversy and a program to rescue burros in the Grand Canyon earned three Gilmour Academy Lower School students a stake in the National History Day nationwide competition June 15-19 at the University of Maryland. Skylar Schambs will present her individual documentary on the burro rescue. Kendall Christian and Paige Papesch were finalists in the group documentary category for their film on busing. Qualifying at the state competition April 26 in Columbus, three sixth graders were among 29 students to advance to nationals in the junior division. Gilmour student Agnes Mirando received honorable mention for her performance on women’s baseball. Their success began when 16 Gilmour students who competed at the district level at National History Day March 15 at Case Western Reserve University advanced to the state competition. They showcased their expansive research conducted at libraries, archives, museums, and historic sites, and through oral history interviews. The internment of Japanese citizens during World War II, women’s baseball in the 1940s, and the right to attend school by students with HIV/AIDS were a few of the 16 projects explored in exhibits, documentaries, and presentations around the theme Conflict and Compromise in History. Ten projects were selected for the state competition. The district competition included 492 students in grades 6-12, with 237 from the junior division. “The cornerstone of the Gilmour experience was the rich and varied resources students used to research their topics,” said Carmel Fantelli, Lower School Humanities Instructor. She reported that the students

used local sources such as the Western Reserve Historical Society, John Carroll University’s broadcast archives, WKYC TV-3, Georgia’s Peabody Awards archives, Northern Indiana’s Women’s Baseball Collection, and the Ryan White Collection at the Kokomo Library in Indiana. “Our students conducted interviews with a law professor, a lawyer, and three firsthand witnesses in the Cleveland Schools’ desegregation case, analyzing and interpreting information from their sources and drawing conclusions about their topics’ significance in history,” Ms. Fantelli said. The competition, which Case Western Reserve initiated in 1974, invites students to develop a historical topic and to link its significance to society and history. Students examine pivotal people, places, and events in world history through their projects. Through National History Day, they acquire historical knowledge and perspective and develop critical thinking and problemsolving skills that will help them manage and use information now and in the future. In addition to Skylar, Paige, Kendall, and Agnes, other Gilmour sixth graders who advanced to the state competition were the following: Paige Anton, Hannah Bencivenni, Lauryn Durham, Natalie Ertz, Alexa Jackson, Susan Lefelhocz, Michael Mallak, Holly Moore, Amy Rizzo, Emily Steinemann, Olivia Vaz, and Katharine Zavagno. At the district competition, Hugh O’Neill received an award from The Early Settlers Association for a local history piece on Mapp vs. Ohio, a landmark case against “unreasonable searches and seizures.” Pierre Germain won the Cleveland Gray’s Military History Award for his project on the Crimean War.





ot everyone has a building dedicated for him, but Don Sullivan ’54, a retired orthopaedic surgeon and former Florida State Senator, sure does. It is the new EpiCenter at St. Petersburg College. Don’s efforts as a state legislator made it possible for the college to offer baccalaureate degrees in high-need specialties. The $32 million center dedicated last fall includes a Corporate Training Center, laboratories, and space for the school’s Technology Management programs, and it is home to a convention and visitors’ bureau and arts council. The Gilmour alum previously served as Vice President for Economic Development and Innovative Projects at St. Petersburg College. “The most notable result was development of a teachers college, which now enrolls 1,000 new candidates for teachers’ degrees,” Don says. The program is being copied across the country and the state of Florida is building a new system of undergraduate education based on it. During a decade in the State Senate, the Gilmour alum championed charter school legislation, a bicycle helmet law, and, as appropriations chairman, obtained funding for all levels of education. He also was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2003. An article in The St. Petersburg Times noted Dr. Sullivan’s widelyregarded stature in the Capitol and recognized his professional, civic, and political credentials. Today, he and his wife Bretta live in Boca Grande, Florida, a small beach community south of Sarasota. They have three children and five grandchildren. “I own and fly my own helicopter and play a lot of golf,” says Don, who is a licensed private pilot for airplanes as well. As an active board member for several organizations, he has received countless awards from the Chamber of Commerce, industry, civic groups, associations, and medical and educational groups. Occasionally, Don sees fellow classmates Jim Mooney, who lives nearby, and John Mihm, who vacations in the area. The Gilmour graduate earned his bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University and his medical degree from Baylor University in Houston. Following his residency at Northwestern, he was in private practice in Chicago before moving to St. Petersburg in 1972, where he specialized in arthroscopic surgery. Four years ago, when Don returned to Gilmour for his 50th reunion, he admitted having a hard time finding his way around campus. The visit brought back fond memories, and he enjoyed reading his old columns from the days when he was on the staff of the student newspaper. He recalls always being open to new adventures even back then. “I remember hiking through the woods nearby, conducting clandestine chemistry experiments, and trying out new activities,” he says. “All this led me to continue to enjoy the opportunities that life gives us all,” says Don, who has run in the Boston Marathon and enjoys bicycling, sailing, and scuba diving. “I never turned down a new adventure.”


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DICK URSEM’S grandson, Zach Moore, is a senior at Hudson High in Hudson, OH, and took 10th place in diving at the 2008 state finals. Dick and his wife Joanne (his 1949 junior prom date) are enjoying retirement in Florida.

1951 While most of the Gilmour “pioneers” are retired or slowing down, JIM MATHIEU is just getting started. Jim travels throughout the world buying and selling exotic wood as owner of Euro Direct Lumber Sales Ltd., based in Hallandale Beach, FL. In addition, he has opened a new business in the Philippines where he now spends most of his time . . . Recently in Port Charlotte, FL, RAY RHODE and LOU CARRAN got together with DICK URSEM ’50, DAN COLLINS ’53, JIM MOONEY ’54, and DON SULLIVAN ’54.


DON VICHICK, out of the horse business and down to one dog, continues enjoying life and New Mexico working part-time. He still races his Porsche and teaches high performance driving (racing). Wife Marie is great; they have nine grandchildren and one great granddaughter. They send their best to the class of ’54.


JIM CALLAHAN, who retired from the U.S. Special Forces following 30 years of service, will be retiring from his second career with the U.S. Diplomatic Security Service in October 2008. He commands 200

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officers charged with the security of U.S. diplomatic personnel in France. Jim sends best regards to one and all and regrets not being present for the 2008 class Jim Mooney ’54, Don Sullivan ’54, Lou Carran ’51, reunion. Any Ray Rhode ’51, Dan Collins ’53, and Dick Ursem ’50 member of the in Port Charlotte, FL class of ’58 in Paris between now and Jim’s retirement is invited 1962 to an embassy luncheon. After that, CARL FONTANA and wife Mary you will have to look for him on Ann spent 10 days in Italy attending one of the trout streams in his niece’s wedding. Last Normandy . . . Retired from the Red September, he played hockey in the Cross, JOE MEDVED and wife Peg Senior Olympics +60 in Minneapolis (who retired from teaching math) and won the Gold. March 2009 is have lived in New Hampshire for 30 when Carl and some ’62 classmates years and love it. One drawback: plan to meet in Florida for golf and it’s hard for a Cleveland sports fan laughs . . . JIM HERGET ran the to live only 60 miles from Boston. inaugural Burning River 100-Mile They have two daughters in mediEndurance Run (Willoughby to cine (MRI and nursing) and a son in Akron) last August . . . WILLIAM private equity. Despite the years, SWEENEY insists that ’62 was the he still considers Cleveland home. best with Brother Alfonso, smokers lounge, and the pit. He was one of


After 22 years as Chairman of the Department of Neurology at Saint Louis University, JACK SELHORT stepped down June 1, 2007; however, he continues as a faculty member. His family is coast-tocoast with children and two granddaughters living in San Francisco and Charleston, SC.


MARK SWEENEY says all is well in Toledo, OH, and sends best wishes to his 1961 classmates.

Jim Callahan ’58 (third from left) with members of his staff


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voiding the pitfalls of bad business decisions is just one area of expertise Chris Eiben ’67 has honed over the years. He is Ohio’s only certified legal investigator. Throughout his career, Chris has worked in civil rights investigation with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission in construction and real estate development and in oil and gas exploration. In the early 1980s, after selling his oil and gas interests, he pioneered a product called a video settlement brochure to spur insurance companies to settle prior to trial. The brochures have netted tens of millions of dollars in settlements. Through writing and producing the videos, Chris unearthed a knack for identifying issues and facts for developing civil and criminal cases. “Today, I do mostly due diligence and background investigations for corporations and institutions,” says the Gilmour graduate, who lives in Cleveland with his wife Jayne and sons Theo and Charlie. Four years ago, he wrote the book “It Pays to Be Paranoid: Securing Business Success by Preparing for the Worst” to help readers prevent mistakes that could result in catastrophic expenses, losses, and bankruptcies. His book draws on case studies, examining business ventures that went wrong, analyzing mistakes, and providing ways to rectify them. The book teaches entrepreneurs how to size up people and deals and avoid legal problems. He has written extensively on Cleveland history, including two biographies, and contributed several sections for “The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History.” One of Chris’s investigations took his career in a new direction in 2005. He was conducting a background investigation for a prominent family exploring the prospects of drilling for natural gas on family property. The venture resulted in his management of Little Mountain Holdings LLC, which has 42 members who collectively own 1,600 contiguous acres of land. The group of neighbors is developing natural gas beneath their land in Geauga and Lake counties in Northeast Ohio. “The landowner consortium is the first of its kind in Ohio and perhaps the nation,” the alum says. He is working with other local groups on similar plans for drilling on their properties. In his spare time, Chris enjoys reading, hiking, skiing, and swimming. The latter is a carryover from his days as a school record holder and co-captain of Gilmour’s Varsity Swim Team. “My fast twitch muscles are long gone and I now only swim slowly and easy distances,” Chris confides. He regards his years at Gilmour as the most formative in his life and is grateful for his many gifted teachers. “They taught me that learning can be a passionate experience requiring discipline and rigor,” he says crediting his Gilmour education for an effortless transition to Williams College, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in English literature. “It wasn’t just my teachers who made Gilmour so special, so unforgettable,” Chris notes. “It was equally my classmates,” he says singling out former Gilmour Trustee and Vice Chairman Bob Tomaro, who died in 2006. “Bob personified the magic of our class. The class of 1967 was truly unique, a wild collection of fantastic people,” says Chris, adding that his Gilmour friendships have been lasting and essential.


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the original “Tri State Twisters,” the only drummer. He says Gilmour definitely changed his life forever; all those years and his friends made his life the way it is now. Currently a physician, he plans to retire in a year or so and then ride off into the sunset like Ronald Reagan. He and his wife of 31 years have four wonderful children, all healthy and successful in life . . . MARK WINTER was promoted to Executive Vice President of Stewart Title. In addition, Mark recently visited Kenya and Ethiopia on behalf of Living Water International, a faith-based NGO (non-governmental organization) whose mission is to provide clean water to the needy . . . A weekend March snowstorm played havoc with the Class of ’62 golf outing in Lake Nona, FL. HARRY KEAGLER, JOHN CARNEY, JIM McMONAGLE, and BILL NOOK were unable to get out of Cleveland. Enjoying the weekend were classmates DICK McSORLEY (2008 event chairman), BO KALLAY, DAN MCMULLEN,



JIM NELSON says if you see Amy Nelson on ESPN or read her baseball articles on, she’s #1 daughter of him and wife Sue . . . After 35 years as sales manager for Ohio Materials Handling, RICH PHILLIPS is giving himself a 60th birthday present by entering into semi-retirement. This will allow PATRICK MCMAHON ’65 and Rich more time to concentrate on the marketing of their line of culinary sportswear, Rodger Dumpling Clothiers, Ltd.


PAUL NANZIG, wife Jeneé, daughter Shelby (16) and son Michael (13) are all thankful to have returned home after a forest fire in June that destroyed 250 homes in their South Lake Tahoe, CA, neighborhood. No longer self-employed, Paul has joined forces with former competitor Tahoe Outdoor Living as a landscape architect licensed in California and Nevada.


Front row left to right – Dick McSorley, Bo Kallay, Dan McMullen, and Dave Daly Second row – Tom Pickens, Terry Walsh, Carl Fontana, and Jon Newton in Lake Nona, FL

MIKE MUDGETT graduated from Princeton Seminary in 2006 and is the associate pastor at Malibu Presbyterian Church, which burned down in the Malibu fires last October. Mike conducted the wedding ceremony for his son John on Memorial Day, and John and his wife will live close

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by in Santa Monica. Daughter Sarah is expecting the Mudgetts’ first grandchild in October, and she and her husband live an hour and a half south in Costa Mesa. Mike and Karen are blessed to be so close to family.

1969 2007 was the year CHRIS PETERSON enjoyed traveling in Europe, Japan, and China.


SCOTT CARSON continues to serve on the Board of Directors of both the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and the Michigan Aggregates Association. He has worked for the Edw. C. Levy Company in Detroit, MI, for 32 years as Vice President/General Manager, Natural Aggregates Division . . . Latest news from NEIL GROSEL is that he retired as Chairman of the Department of Radiology at Marietta Memorial Hospital in July 2006. Three of his children are enrolled at The Ohio State University for the fall 2008 semester.


MARK MORAN, a retired partner at the consulting firm of Booz Allen Hamilton, has been working with the MetroHealth System board in Cleveland on its strategic plan. He was recently appointed Interim CEO and President of MetroHealth.


STEVE LAMBERT writes that he is still living in beautiful Northern Michigan and would love to hear from classmates. continued on page 40


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Paul Dolan ’76 and Beth Potratz ’86

Two High-Achieving Alums


Paul Dolan ’76 and Beth Potratz ’86


hether in baseball or the business world, people drive the action. Just ask Cleveland Indians President Paul Dolan and Beth Holzheimer Potratz, a human resources entrepreneur. They received Gilmour Academy’s Alumni of the Year Award in December at the Headmaster’s Christmas Party in Tudor House. The award honors Gilmour graduates who have distinguished themselves in their personal lives and careers and who have demonstrated leadership and service to the school. Even before he played middle infield as a Gilmour Lancer, baseball was in Paul Dolan’s blood. With the Cleveland Indians having capped their 2007 season as American League Central Division champs, the Tribe’s President is primed for 2008. After graduating from Gilmour in 1976, Paul did his undergraduate work at St. Lawrence University and earned his law degree from the University of Notre Dame. He specialized in commercial business litigation at Thrasher, Dinsmore & Dolan, where he was a partner with his father Larry Dolan. When his father bought the Indians in 2000, Paul became the team’s Vice President/General Counsel. His brother Matt, a 1983 Gilmour graduate, is Ohio State Representative for the 98th District. The Dolans are the third family with Gilmour alumni (along with the Jacobs and O’Neill families) to own the Indians in recent history.

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Jack ’10, Karen, Paul ’76 and Peter ’14 Dolan

Paul Dolan also is Chairman and Chief Executive of the media company Fast Ball Sports Productions, which operates a regional sports network in Ohio. He is a board member of University Hospitals, United Way, J.M. Smucker Company, and the Great Lakes Science Center. Paul and his wife Karen have two sons – Jack, a freshman at Gilmour, and Peter, a sixth grader at St. Joan of Arc School. A Gilmour Trustee, Paul has been active with the Academy’s capital campaigns and Annual Fund, and has been a speaker for Gilmour’s Men’s Club. He received the Gilmour Trophy in 1976, the highest award a student can receive. Another alum who has seen great success is Beth Potratz, the founder of Bryah HR Strategies. The firm works with corporations and universities to improve human resources practices, to help workers embrace change, and to create strategies to realize corporate goals and objectives. Her clients include ING Americas,

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Unilever, Nationwide Insurance, Rockwell Automation, Yamaha Motor Manufacturing, and the University of Notre Dame, among others. After graduating from Gilmour in 1986, Beth earned a bachelor’s degree in organizational communications from Loyola University of Chicago and a master’s degree in labor Alumni President Mark relations and human resources Young presenting the award from Cleveland State University. to Beth Potratz The alum has held senior positions in human resources, talent management, and change integration. She served as Director of Human Resources Capability for Unilever, where she led its global human transformation project for the firm’s home and personal care business group in North America. At Unilever, Beth also oversaw human resources for process consultation and redesign, facilitation, and organization assessment and design. She has held leadership positions with Rockwell Automation, Asparity Decision Solutions, and Jack Dolan presenting Helene Curtis. the award to his dad

Megan McNamara ’87, Tim Holzheimer ’61, Beth Holzheimer Potratz ’86, Bonnie Holzheimer, Tim Holzheimer ’89

A second generation Gilmour alum, Beth follows in the footsteps of her father Timothy, who graduated from Gilmour in 1961 and won the Alumni of the Year Award in 1978. Her sister Megan McNamara graduated from the Academy in 1987, followed by her brother Tim in 1989. Beth and her husband Jeff have two daughters, Bridgette and Sara. She has taken a leadership role with Gilmour’s alumni outreach events in Chicago, was a class representative for the 2001 alumni reunion, and has been involved with the Academy’s Annual Fund and capital campaign. She was awarded the Brother Theophane Schmitt Trophy for school spirit as a senior.


A l u m n i 1976 JOHN HELLMUTH, his wife Mary, and their three children – Spencer (21), Allie (19), and Molly (15) – live in Winnetka, IL. John is currently Vice President of Sales for Skillsoft Corporation . . . JOHN VELOTTA sends greetings to all of his former GA classmates, teachers, and families. He says the Class of 1976 was a special group of people; he has great memories of them, and wishes the very best to all. John, wife Emerald, and children Stephanie (11) and Johnny (9) are always around town and support the Gilmour family.


DAVID DEORIO, a United Nations Project Officer, completed his two-year posting in Moscow last October and is now spending three years with UN headquarters in Europe. He would love to hear from anyone from the Class of ’77 (especially STEVE ENDRES) . . . BEN GALLO sends greetings to all from Nicaragua . . . JIM MOONEY and Lisa Maher were married on November 23, 2007, at The Church of St. Dominic in Shaker Heights, OH. Jim recently left DHL Global Forwarding and is now District Sales Executive at Expeditor’s International.

Ben Gallo ’77 and family


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CHIP ERB has joined the law firm of Weston Hurd as a partner, primarily representing financial institutions in connection with their commercial loan transactions. In their free time, Chip and his wife Karla enjoy golfing at Westwood Country Club in Rocky River and at Royal Poinciana Golf Club in Naples, FL. Chip has also been taking guitar lessons from Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Jorma Kaukonen, a founding member of Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna, at Jorma’s Fur Peace Ranch in southeastern Ohio . . . SANDRA GONTERO is living in Chagrin Falls and loves being “home” to run into GA/GO friends. She was recently appointed Senior Managing Director of the Sterling Division of National City Bank and looks forward to seeing many classmates at their 30th reunion.

1979 In a recent issue of Northern Ohio Live, TERRI HAMILTON BROWN, Senior Vice President of Corporate Diversity at National City Corporation, discussed the Commission for Economic Inclusion’s Diversity Professionals Group and its value to its membership.


ROB MAYNARD and wife Michele welcomed the arrival of twin girls, Emily and Megan, on July 23, 2007. Along with son Colin, age 4, the Maynards reside in Mt. Airy, MD . . . In addition to his professional interest in both critical care medicine and end-of-life care, DAN RAY continues to work hard at the family’s Pennsylvania farm where they raise goats. His farm duties include milking the goats, making

cheese, and baling hay. Dan ran a half-marathon in April 2007 and plans to race this year . . . Father of three (including two teenagers), JESSE SMITH teaches in New York.


On January 1, 2007, FRANK CONSOLO and TERENCE O’BRIEN founded their new law firm, Consolo O’Brien LLC, on Public Square in downtown Cleveland, OH. Their six-member firm represents clients in labor and employment, workers’ compensation, and business transactions. Elected to the University Heights City Council, Frank began serving a four-year term on January 1, 2008. He and wife Mary are proud of their son Horace, who will be a senior at Case Western Reserve University and contemplating going to law school . . . An advertising creative developer and manager in New York City, SCOTT CORRIGAN recently began graduate school at New York University in the master’s program for interactive media . . . MAX GAUJEAN, a trial lawyer, and his wife live in Scarsdale, NY.


GREG TUROCY is a partner in Amin, Turocy & Calvin LLP; the firm recently signed a 10-year lease for the top (57th) floor of the Key Tower. More than a dozen Fortune 500 companies are among its clients, and it has worked with AT&T, Cisco Systems, Microsoft Corp., Motorola, and Wachovia Corp.


MICHAEL BELL and wife Tina Maddela are the parents of fraternal twins, Audrey and Malena, born in 2003 . . . We extend our


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obert Zhun ’71 has traveled down a long and winding road throughout his career. After earning his undergraduate degree in communications from Ohio University, he worked as a realtor; an advertising director for a newspaper in Athens, Ohio; and as a bartender with classmate Jim Brennan ’71. “That was a great time,” Bob recalls. He even was a chef at a restaurant while he was earning chemistry credits to qualify for nursing school, which he did, graduating from The Ohio State University. For more than 20 years, Bob was a registered nurse at Sarasota Memorial Hospital, where he was responsible for the physical and psychological care of surgical patients. He assisted the anesthesia team preparing the patient for surgery, served as scrub nurse and assistant to the surgeon when Robert Zhun ’71 and necessary, and transitioned patients from the operating room Br. William Geenen, C.S.C., at the Senior Friendship Center to the post-anesthesia care unit. Not knowing a soul in town, Bob joined the Sarasota International Cricket Club to meet people and get exercise. He had played softball and figured that since both sports involved a bat and ball he could transfer his skills from one to the other. “The two games are vastly different with a few minor similarities,” he points out. The cricket club opened up new vistas for the Gilmour graduate. He has traveled to England and Scotland and played cricket in the Bahamas, Cayman Islands, Canada, and throughout the United States. He even sipped cocktails on the royal yacht “HMY Britannia” and was a guest of the British embassy in Mexico City. When he is not out cricketing, Bob plays blues harmonica with other musicians and racquetball. In speaking of his Gilmour classmates, Bob says he regards them more like a fraternity. “In my days at Gilmour, the intimate size of my class – all classes in fact – bred lasting friendships. We all shared many triumphs and rites of passage,” Bob says, admitting to many “Big Chill” style weekends in Northern Michigan thanks to the generosity of Pat Trahan’s ’71 family. “First it was boys, then men, then men with girlfriends, then men with wives and babies – a complete continuum of life and friendship, the seed sown on the soil of Gilmour Academy,” he says. Although he retired in January 2007, Bob works for an eye surgeon one day a week at the hospital. For 20 years, he has volunteered at the Senior Friendship Center founded by Brother William Geenen, C.S.C., one-time Admissions Director at Gilmour. He is a regular blood donor at his hospital and is active in its corporate volunteer program. In reminiscing about his years at Gilmour, Bob recalls taking a class with Brother Ivo Regan, C.S.C. “One almost felt to be in the presence of Shakespeare himself,” he notes. He believes that the lessons learned while mastering written communication and public speaking have served him well in his academic career and everyday life. Bob followed his three brothers – Peter ’66, Paul ’69, and Bill ’70 at the Academy. “Gilmour was an extension of the Catholic environment and values my parents lived by and taught us at home,” he says. “Together they set a moral compass by which to live, love, and grow. It guides us and allows us to recognize and do the right thing. It instills compassion for the less fortunate, and an appreciation for the blessings of abundance and family.”


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1980s N e w s

ark Twain once said, “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.” Traci Felder ’86 is helping to arm women with the clothes and skills they need to enter or remain in the workforce, to boost their self-esteem by making them feel that they have something to offer, and to ensure that they look sharp for interviews and on the job. As Director of Dress for Success in Cleveland and Columbus, Traci oversees its office attire and job retention programs for disadvantaged women in the community, raising $575,000 to support Cleveland’s annual budget and directing the $124,000 operational budget in Columbus. Over the last six years, she has more than doubled the number of women assisted by the program, which not only enhances their families’ lives, but also lifts the community by providing a larger pool of qualified workers. Traci and the five other staff members she supervises collect and organize suits, pumps, and accessories that have been donated and purchased. They also spruce up their clients’ interview techniques; workplace savvy; financial literacy; and the life skills needed to juggle work, family, and education to spur career growth. Dress for Success provides services to more than 1,100 women Rick, Traci and Alex Ritt in Cleveland annually and 500 women in Akron. Corporations, foundations, government agencies, and individuals fund the project. The alum also raises money from events such as its annual gala The Denim Affair and a golf outing. Her biggest challenge, she notes, is turning clothing donors into financial ones. The Gilmour graduate earned her bachelor’s degree in organizational communication and a master’s degree in communication and marketing from the University of Hartford. Prior to her current position, she was Executive Director of Make a Wish Foundation’s Northeast Ohio office. Traci began her career as Public Information Officer for the New Cleveland Campaign and was Special Assistant of Special Events and Marketing for Mayor Michael White. A good match for the position she holds, Traci believes that “life is not always fair, but we have the power to change what we believe is wrong.” Although no one experience can prepare one for a career, Traci says, “Every day there are valuable lessons learned that continually define who you are and prepare you for the next step.” In reflecting on her days at Gilmour, she notes that the Academy “helped me believe that if I worked hard and believed in myself I could succeed in whatever I chose to do.” Traci and her husband Rick Ritt, who works in the technology sector providing online movie services and mobile phone platforms for the entertainment industry, have a son Max who is almost 2 years old. Their home includes a boutique where Traci sells novel belt buckles that she designs with Swarovski crystal. She even has adapted the design for cell phone covers, compact mirrors, lipstick cases, and PEZ dispensers. The active alum is often featured in the pages of The Plain Dealer, and has appeared in The Chagrin Valley Times, Inside Business, and The Cleveland Jewish News, and she has served as a board member of the worldwide Dress for Success organization. Over the years, Traci has been honored by Cuyahoga County Commissioners and the City of Cleveland, and she won the Pillar Award for community service in 2002.


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condolences to JOE KLEMA on the passing of his fiancée, Lori Rae Jamieson on May 2, 2007 . . . Congratulations to LORI MATHEWS on the publication of her first novel, “You Don’t Know Me,” the first of a crime-ridden trilogy in which she allows readers to get to know the characters and feel connected with the story. Lori recently had a book signing at Barnes and Noble Booksellers at Richmond Town Mall in Richmond Heights, OH, and hosts a weekly blog on writing titled “Go Head.” You can write her at


After spending more than two months traveling in South America, CARRIE HANSEN KINNISON and husband Pat are back on their 40foot cutter-rigged sailboat. They recently left the Lake District of Argentina and headed farther south into Patagonia. They sailed to the Atlantic Coast and toured the Valdez Peninsula, then headed back toward the Andes where they visited the awesome Perito Moreno glacier.


HATTIE DE CRESPIGNY is a senior national recruiter for KPMG Canada in Toronto . . . TIM FORDING was one of the alums attending the recent GA reception in New York City. He and wife Kathy are the parents of four – Michael, Molly, Caroline, and Daisy.

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Join the Gilmour Academy Alumni Group on Facebook For further information contact Kathy Kenny, 1986 CAROLE MORAN KRUS and former Gilmour classmate ANNE COYLE HUNGATE ran in the National Marathon to Fight Breast Cancer in Jacksonville, FL, this past February. The 13.1-mile half-marathon race raises money for breast cancer research and to support those women who are currently fighting the disease . . . BRIAN SEIFERT and wife Amy are the parents of Jake, born November 13, 2006.


Congratulations to SARA HOWLEY on being named Vice President of Corporate Communications and Marketing at Broward Health in Fort Lauderdale, FL. She will oversee all marketing services, website marketing and content, internal and physician communications, and all public relations functions . . . BRENT SHEAHAN is currently working with John Cook, 11-time PGA Tour winner, his family, and the Robert Weller Company on the development of NorthStar Golf Resort, which opened in 2007 as a premier golf community on the north side of Columbus, OH. Brent has been in the golf business for 20 years at eight properties in the Midwest and on the East Coast . . .

EARL SIOSON is a software engineer for BrandMuscle and lives in Beachwood, OH . . . Linsalata Capital Partners recently announced the appointment of MURAD A. BEG as one of its vice presidents. His responsibilities are acquisition searches, due diligence, negotiations, and portfolio company oversights including serving on the Stanton Carpet oversight team. Murad was formerly with the law firms of Cleveland-based Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP and Cummings & Lockwood in its Connecticut offices.


Congratulations to JEFF FRANCO, recently appointed Executive Director of City Year Washington, DC ( City Year unites young people of all backgrounds for a year of full-time service, giving them skills and opportunities to change the world . . . Having completed a B.S. in business management at the University of Maryland, an R.N. degree at Excelsior College, and an MBA at Pepperdine University in 2002, ELIZABETH QUARTULLO now works as Senior Product Marketing Manager in class II medical devices for IT Solution Division of Hill-Rom Co., Inc. in Raleigh, NC. Shealso serves as a nurse in the United States Air Force Reserves.

Tim Fording ’85 and family 43

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1990s N e w s

herever Marisa Pascucci ’92 establishes roots in her career as a curator, one thing always stays on her desk or in her office. It is a quote by 18th century French philosopher and writer Denis Diderot that she discovered as an art history major at American University: “First move me, astonish me, break my heart, let me tremble, weep, stare, be enraged – only then regale my eyes.” Last year, Marisa was named the new curator of American art at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, FL. Each day, she will slip among the works of Mary Cassatt, Georgia O’Keeffe, Jackson Pollock, and Edward Hopper. As the Harold and Anne Berkley Smith Curator of American Art, Marisa will care for and continue to develop the museum’s renowned collection of American paintings, sculpture, and works on paper from the 19th and 20th centuries. She also will develop exhibitions from the collection and oversee exhibitions at the Norton Museum organized by other institutions. “I believe art museums are truly unique places, serving as a sanctuary to enjoy art and a repository to also preserve it,” Marisa says. Her lifelong interest in the arts was even apparent as a Gilmour student, where she was in the Art Club and a junior patron of the Cleveland Ballet. After graduating from Gilmour and earning a bachelor of arts degree from American University, Marisa received master of arts degrees in art history and museum studies from a joint program at Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Museum of Art. Over the years, she has been Curator at the Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse and Associate Curator at the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts in Alabama. In the Cleveland area, she was Exhibitions and Programs Coordinator at The Sculpture Center and a Curatorial Assistant at the Museum of Contemporary Art. In the world of academia, she spent two years at the Cleveland Museum of Art as Instructor, Education and Public Programs. Listed in “Who’s Who in American Art,” the Gilmour graduate is the author of several art history publications and is active in professional curator and museum associations. Of her new position in Florida, Marisa says, “I feel most fortunate to be essentially the caretaker of a fabulous, A+ collection of American paintings and sculpture at a world-class museum like Norton.” She currently serves on the City of West Palm Beach Cultural Council. Married to Bruce Jones, a social studies teacher, Marisa recalls her days at Gilmour and the role the Academy has played in her life. Although Gilmour did not have an art history program, she says, its rigorous college prep English and history classes prepared her for the research and writing critical to her education and career.


Thomas Duncan ’89 and wife Kristy


DR. THOMAS R. DUNCAN married Kristy Hammill on April 7, 2007 in North Carolina. Tom practices chiropractic in Cornelius, NC, and Kristy is a school counselor in the Mecklenburg School System. Attending were 1989 alumni classmates TIM HOLZHEIMER (usher) and CHRIS KLIKA. The newlyweds honeymooned in Paris and London followed by a summer reception at the Shaker Heights Country Club in June, where additional classmates joined in the celebration . . . Arrow Machine, located in Mentor, OH, and coowned by JOHN HABE IV and his brothers, was selected as one of Lake-Geauga Fast Track’s 50 winners. The award honors successful companies in the area. John, President of the company, says it primarily serves the automotive and aerospace industries, making over 10 million airbag components per year, 5 million brake components, and about 4 million power-steering components . . . BRIAN MARKS lives in Lyndhurst and is President of Heather’s Heat & Flavor in Legacy Village . . . After 14 years, all is still going well in Northern California for MATT WEIL and family. His 5-year-old son Jacob took ski lessons this winter from DAVE DEIOMA ’88 . . .

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Congratulations to NICOLE WHARFF and spouse Joe Hiney on the birth of Drake, born January 2, 2008.


ERIKA DICELLO LACROIX and husband welcomed their second child, Anthony Joseph, on April 17, 2007. He joins big brother Andre Nicholas, who is 2 years old . . . JOHN WENSTRUP and wife ALEXIS DOWIDCHUK, a veterinarian, are happily married with four pets and living in the Sierra foothills between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe, where they love to ski. John works for Oliver Wyman Management Consultancy.


STACEY BENDUHN and David Grano were married October 20, 2007, in Gilmour’s Our Lady Chapel. Attendants included CATHERINE KASTELIC ’92, ALLISON ROMANINI HADDEN ’91, MARY BETH SALEM MOORE ’92, and ANDREA ROMANINI ’93 . . . BILL MATTIS lives in Portland, OR, with his wife and two stepchildren. He works as the Director of Client Services for Borders Perrin Norander. On December 2, 2007, Bill and ROB ONDAK ran the California International Marathon in Sacramento, CA. This was Rob’s first marathon and Bill’s fourth in two years. Bill ran a 3-hour, 9minute marathon and qualified for the 2008 Boston Marathon . . . ERICA MIELE STRAHM and husband Jeremy welcomed their third child Samuel Robert, born February 10, 2008. He weighed 7 lbs. 9 oz. and was 20-1/2" long. He joins big brother Will and sister Lucy.

1992 MICHAEL D’ONOFRIO and wife Laura gave birth in April 2007 to their son Rocco Thomas D’Onofrio. Michael is working in mergers and acquisitions and investment banking with Treasure Coast Capital Partners, the firm he started in 2002. He also is doing work in the fields of biofuels and renewable energy. The family lives in West Palm Beach, FL, and Charlotte, NC . . . KARA FISTEK and Frank Black were married in May 2007. In September 2007, they moved to England for two years for employment with Barnes Distribution . . . JUNE LEE lives with his wife and daughter (age 4) in Seoul, Korea, where he works for Seokwang Development . . . EMILY MURPHY and husband Toros Maksoudian announced the arrival of Olivia Rose on February 10, 2008. She weighed 5 lbs., 15 oz. Big sister Isobel welcomed her into the family . . . DR. MARY TATMAN DENGLER is a university professor at Royal Holloway University of London. She is Deputy Director of the MSC Sustainability and Management and lives in central London with husband Martin and 1-year-old son Theo . . . JESSICA DUNN and Craig Coffey were married in September 2007.

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for Business Roundtable . . . MIKE PORATH, an editor for AOL, is now in New York City. Wife SARAH GIFFORD works for Strategic Workforce Solutions. Daughter Annabel continues to grow . . . HEATHER BROOKS lives in Denver, CO, and is a doctor and proud mother of son Zach . . . Physical therapist JANELL SCHLANSER MALICHKY has two little boys . . . ROB LIOTTA is a Navy doctor . . . Living outside Chicago, CHRISTI PAPENBROCK SAMUELIAN has a son and daughter.


TIM COLGROVE and wife Tinya were very busy in 2007. They purchased their first home in northern San Diego County. Tim’s promotion at Advanced Sterilization Products (medical device industry), a Division of Johnson & Johnson, includes more managerial responsibilities and traveling to places such as Japan. Tinya obtained her first awarded funding, a three-year grant from the National Institutes of Health to conduct microbiology research on how bacteria form spores. But most important and exciting was the birth of daughter Layli Kaitlyn on May 19, 2007 . . .


STEVEN ABOOD, an attorney in Emory University’s Chemistry Department doing patent work, is working on developing a selfdefense book . . . An attorney in Manhattan, LINDSEY CARR and Scott Siegler were married on October 18, 2007. . . JOE CREA is Deputy Communications Director

Tim Colgrove ’94, Tinya and baby Layli


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Having graduated from Tulane Medical School, CRAIG CONARD is now in his first year of pediatric medicine at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus. He can still use his acquired African French with the West African populations that Columbus is attracting, as well as the multitude of Spanish dialects he has acquired . . . JIM DAY, now an attorney at a private law firm in New York City, spent a term in Mozambique and South Africa teaching business courses for developing nations . . . Living in Washington, DC, MELISSA PORTER has been an attorney for the U.S. Department of Transportation for the past seven years. Recently, she has been working with the Senate Commerce Committee on railroad legislation . . . In May 2007, KELLY SIDLEY received her Ph.D. in art history from Columbia University. She currently is a lecturer at the Museum of Modern Art.


Project Manager for Metalsa Roanoke, Inc., ENRIQUE GARZA and wife Elsy live in Roanoke, VA, with their two children Enrique (4) and Mariana (17 months) . . . MATTHEW JOLLY teaches English composition, creative writing, and literature at GateWay Community College . . . JENNIFER KAVRAN, with a University of Pennsylvania undergraduate degree and a Yale Ph.D., has just completed a post-doctorate at Yale . . . BRIAN O’NEILL is a partner in the Cleveland-based menswear design house Wrath Arcane, which is committed to clothes made in America. In two years, the line has grown from its original five pieces to a


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50-plus piece collection. Thirty-five boutiques in the U.S. and Japan carry the line including Brigade on Coventry Road in Cleveland Heights . . . Living in Singapore, MARK PHONG is now a senior associate scientist with Eli Lilly.


DOMINIQUE FYFE lives in Westford, MA, and is a senior HR administrator for Monster Worldwide . . . MICHAEL OCCHIONERO works in corporate real estate for Colliers International in Cleveland . . . AARON ZOBER is a Clearance Coordinator for Actuality Productions in Eagle Rock, CA . . . Nina Nicoletta, daughter of JENNIFER DILISI and husband Mark Newton, was born May 3, Nina Nicoletta 2007. She Newton weighed 9 lbs. 6 oz. and was 22" long . . . MARK PANZICA and wife Rena are the parents of a second son, Ryan Ignatius, born December 6, 2007. He weighed 8 lbs. 10 oz. and was 21" long.

A.J. and Ryan Panzica

1997 GREG HOCEVAR is a Senior Account Manager with First Communications . . . MARK MATUSKA, a graduate of Princeton University, is an architect in New York City.


KATE ANDREWS is currently involved in a portion of the fundraising effort for the feature film “Fast Pitch.” Poised to become the next baseball movie phenomenon, “Fast Pitch” follows a Cleveland area high school student and Indians fan who must transition from the world of baseball to softball . . . An Assistant Professor of Digital Media at Millersville University in the heart of Lancaster, PA, Amish country, what SCOTT CONARD can create with a computer is truly amazing . . . ALICIA GAY, a graduate of Brown University, works for the American Civil Liberties Union in New York City . . . AMY MODIC is a Senior Actuarial Consultant with Travelers.


With an undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and a master’s from Columbia University, LOU CARAVELLA is currently living in New York City working as communications director of a PR firm . . . SCOTT CORBUS, a graduate of Fordham University, works in advertising specializing in brand management for celebrities, athletes, and properties for IMG . . . RICHARD DEBACCO is pursuing his master’s of education in school counseling from John Carroll University . . . KIRSTEN KARAKUL




is humanitarian missions to Honduras as a Gilmour student may have been a catalyst for Alex Kelly ’03 to serve others. Today, the alum is a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Children, Youth and Families Program in Costa Rica. He has been there since last September and lives in Barrio INVU Las Canas, located on the Inter-American Highway, which connects North and South America through the Central American isthmus. “My work focuses on children and youth, but really encompasses the whole community,” Alex says. Since 1999, the town has grown from a shanty community with no electricity and only two taps for water to 5,000 residents. “Starting in the late 1990s, the government housing agency INVU started to build single-family homes,” the volunteer says. The town opened its school in 1999 and now has 600 students from kindergarten through grade 6. Even with these improvements, the barrio faces serious problems with drugs, violence, lack of education and opportunities, and poverty. Alex’s work involves expanding children’s horizons and preparing them to succeed. Many of the children have never been outside the Las Canas area, so he is working with the sixth graders painting a map of the world on the school and studying world issues. Recently, he began a project to raise the self-esteem of women and girls in the community by organizing a cooperative to sell bags in Costa Rica to tourists. “The women are the real drivers of change for the community. By empowering them we greatly improve the community at large,” he explains. Even though it seems easier at times for Alex to take charge of what needs to be done, he knows this will not help the community in the long run. “It is very important to have the community behind you, leading the way on any big project because eventually I will leave,” he says. “If the townspeople gain skills, the knowledge will remain there.” The Gilmour graduate traces his interest in community service to his four trips to Honduras – once as a student, twice with Gilmour alumni, and once alone. He believes his experience at the Academy taught him to pursue what he wanted to do and armed him with the tenacity and conviction to do it. This was reinforced at the University of Dayton, where Alex earned his bachelor’s degree in political science last year. While living in Dayton, he helped head the Dakota Center Homework Club in the Wright-Dunbar neighborhood and was honored with an award for his work. Building on his experience on Gilmour’s Boys Varsity Soccer Team, Alex plays a good deal of soccer in Costa Rica and runs weekly games for younger and older children on a makeshift field in Las Canas. “One of the biggest challenges is the lack of a field or any grass, so we play on pavement and it changes the game completely,” he notes. In his spare time, he reads and sightsees. Although living in Central America does not afford him much time to interact with his friends from Gilmour, he points out that it is possible to drive to visit him, though he warns that on their return to the United States one group of Peace Corps volunteers took a bus through Mexico and the trip took 54 days.


Catching up with Far-Flung Friends Gilmour’s

upbeat news about the Academy is stretching beyond the confines of its Gates Mills campus. During the 2007-2008 school year, Gilmour presented outreach events for alumni, spouses, parents, and friends in cities throughout one third of the nation. The goal is to keep alumni abreast of all the positive things happening at Gilmour. Six cities were selected for the outreach programs based on the concentration of alumni in the area. New York City and Chicago boast the most alumni. On October 16, Guy Opening day of Spring Training at Maras ’82 hosted a Winterhaven with Florida alumni Chicago reception at the Union League Club for 70 and offered to head up an effort to form a local alumni chapter. Gilmour’s Headmaster Brother Robert Lavelle, C.S.C., welcomed the guests and updated them about the success of recent graduates in gaining admission to excellent colleges and universities, Gilmour’s strong enrollment and full-capacity residence program, the five state championships the Lancers have won since 2005, and the progress of several campus construction projects. At the outreach events, Brother Robert expressed his appreciation to those present for their efforts to secure an excellent educational experience for future generations of Gilmour students. On November 15, Craig Rupp ’67 greeted 20 Gilmour guests at a reception at Detroit’s Athletic Club with Gilmour Board Chairman Jerry Murphy ’64. Two weeks later, the outreach program moved to New York City when Bill Weisser ’65 served as host at a reception at the New York Union League Club. The 85 who turned out for the John and Jean Ciotti


Brother Robert Lavelle with Marianne Dergham ’05 and Hope Evans ’05 in Chicago

event heard from Brother Robert and Jerry Murphy, and several alums reconnected with Upper School English Instructor Kathy Kenny, who was awed by the accomplishments of her former students. When the Cleveland Indians began spring training in Winter Haven, Florida, Gilmour fans were on hand February 28 to see the Tribe beat the Houston Astros 12-2. Following the game, alums, family, and friends headed to Orlando for an evening of hospitality at Ginn Reunion Resort hosted by John Klumph ’73. The following day, it was on to Naples/Bonita Springs for a dinner where Judy and Dave Eckrich ’58 hosted 30 guests. Dave spoke of his years at Gilmour and what

Friends gather in New York

the experience meant to him, including the opportunity to meet his wife. The Florida trip concluded March 1 in the Hillsboro Beach/Boca Raton area. Gilmour Trustee and alumni parent John Lennon held a reception at his home for 17 people. The surroundings set the stage for a more informal dialogue about the Academy among the guests. In recapping the excitement of the various events, Gilmour Development Director Jim Farrar concluded, “It is wonderful to spend time with people who have such great memories of Gilmour and who appreciate the dedication of the Brothers of Holy Cross. The feedback is always positive, and those who attend are always appreciative of our efforts to stay in touch with them.”

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is completing her master’s in art history at Case Western Reserve University . . . JAMES KELLER is a partner with Thermopolis Partners in Jackson, WY, working as a securities analyst . . . BURNETT KING lives in the Washington, DC, area working as a project manager for a nonprofit that focuses on water recycling research . . . MEGAN MCPHERSON recently accepted a position at Resilience Capital Partners, a private equity firm in Beachwood, OH . . . In January 2008, PHILLIP ROBINSON accepted a position as Senior Account Executive with Fleishman-Hillard, Inc., a global communications and public relations firm in downtown Cleveland. His wife Elizabeth is Marketing Communications Specialist with Progressive . . . BRENDAN SULLIVAN was busy in May 2008 planning his wedding on an island off the coast of Belize in Central America . . . ROSLANE TIU is currently working on a master’s degree in social work at Case Western Reserve University.


CHRISTEN CONARD, a traveling nurse in San Diego, worked during the horrible fires in the area; fortunately, nothing of hers was destroyed . . . Now in her last year of law school at Washington University in St. Louis, KAITLIN CORKRAN will begin working for the law firm of Chapman & Cutler in Chicago, IL, after graduation . . . A paralegal for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, MOIRE DOBRANSKY lives in New Jersey; she is engaged and will be married at Gilmour in June 2008 . . . EMILY FOX is

employed with the Cleveland Clinic as a clinical research coordinator . . . In Las Vegas NV, PETER JUN is a Casino Marketing Specialist for MGM Mirage . . . RALPH MENZIONE is Junior Account Manager with Ixis Asset Management in Boston, MA . . . Following graduation from Villanova University, MOLLY MERRIMAN worked for KPMG and is now getting her master’s in public administration from New York University. She will graduate in May 2008 . . . In Greenville, SC, ADAM MINADEO is a Wind Turbine Design Engineer for General Electric . . . After graduating from NYU’s film school and working for a film company, MIKE NALLY is now working at Rolling Stone Magazine . . . Dartmouth University graduate SUSAN NAPIER is an investment banker at Goldman Sachs with her own business. She is very involved in KIVA, which supports micro-lending in developing nations, and voluntarily edits the business descriptions that are posted on its website. Oprah Winfrey, President Bill Clinton, and developers of PayPal have been very instrumental in this organization. Susan was married in May and now lives in California . . . Living in New York City, CAROLINE RUDDOCK is an Account Manager for Yahoo . . . A Nursing Community Program Coordinator for the Cleveland Clinic, DOUG TAYEK lives in downtown Cleveland.


ADRIENNE ALAIMO, a graduate of Central Saint Martins (an elite fashion school in Italy and London) is now a sweater designer for Ralph Lauren and lives in New York City . . . BRIN ANDERSON has moved

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back to Cleveland and has finished her first year at Case Western Reserve Law School . . . After completing her last year of law school at Boston College, NAINA BHADRA will work for Goodwin Procter LLP practicing corporate law . . . Pursuing a graduate degree in clinical social work at the University of Denver, JENNIFER BOGGS is scheduled to graduate with her MSW in 2009 . . . ROB CARAVELLA lives in Boston, MA, and works in the executive intern program at KeyBank . . . MARK DILILLO is a Financial Analyst for PCX Holdings and Endura Plastics, both specializing in manufacturing . . . LIZ FALLER is a senior associate for Paragon Advisors . . . In New York City, MIKE HOWLEY is an Investment Banking Analyst with Credit Suisse . . . NICK IMPULLITTI is an officer with the Mentor Police Department . . . DAVID KARAM works for MetLife as a Group Sales Development Manager . . . BRIAN KLAUSNER is an Account Manager with Digiknow, Inc., an interactive marketing agency . . . Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine student BETSY LACKEY is scheduled to graduate in 2009 . . . GINA MANCUSO is a Sales Representative with Penton Media . . . BRIDGET MORRISSEY is doing communications/marketing work for Integrated Health Center in Denver, CO . . . JACIE PAULSON lives in Florida and is in graduate school at Florida Atlantic University seeking a master’s in mental health/counseling . . . KATIE POELKING is an Account Rep/Media Consultant for Yellow Book USA . . . After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s


A l u m n i

degree in architecture, THERESE ROCHE worked in Cleveland for a couple of years at an architecture firm. She recently completed her first year of graduate school to receive her master’s of architecture from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor . . . A consultant for Accenture, BRETT SCHUMACHER currently lives in Columbus, OH . . . ALEX SOMERS has been accepted to Harvard Business School.


JASON ABRAMO graduated from Miami of Ohio and is moving to Europe to do environmental work with the Peace Corps . . . STEPHANIE ALAIMO, who started work on her master’s degree in France, will return home and attend the University of California at San Diego for her master’s and doctorate in sociology specializing in immigration, culture, development and Latin America . . . STEPHANIE BACIK is finishing her first year in the M.D./Ph.D. program at the University of Miami, Miller School of Medicine in Miami, FL. She was awarded a full eight-year scholarship with a dean’s stipend. Stephanie’s area of concentration and research is neuroscience . . . Working in downtown Cleveland for the Chartwell Group, ANDY BARNETT sells commercial real estate . . . University of Notre Dame graduate LYDIA COLEMAN is a consultant for McKinsey & Co. in New York City . . . CHRISTINE EMBLETON is employed with Rennillo Court Reporting, Records & Media . . . Recently inducted into the Jesuit Honor Society, HARRY FIGGIE, who lives in Stamford, CT, works for North Atlantic Mortgage Corporation and attends Fairfield


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University at night . . . Currently a third-year law student at Notre Dame, TIM FIORTA was selected to the Notre Dame University Law Review . . . EMILY FRASER recently began cosmetology school and will complete the program in October 2008 . . . Attending law school at Capital University, MATTHEW KARAM recently became engaged to Crystal Stefanica . . . SHAHZAD KHAN is a research analyst with Sony Pictures Television . . . KATIE KREMBS is working for Octagon, a sports marketing firm in Washington, DC . . . DAVID KRUEGER finished his second year at the University of Akron School of Law . . . Seeking a Ph.D. in genetics, DAN LEDBETTER is enrolled at Texas A&M . . . A teaching intern at St. Ignatius High School, MATT MCPHERSON is earning a master’s of education at John Carroll University . . . After returning from a year working in Japan, LAURA ONDRAKE is attending graduate school at The Ohio State University for her master’s in Japanese literature. She is scheduled to graduate in May 2009 . . . LAURA PANZICA now lives in Chicago and works for Cisco Systems in SMB (small and medium sized businesses) sales . . . Living in New York City, PHOEBE ROBINSON is the Executive Assistant to the President of Picturehouse . . . RICHARD TOMEC is currently working as a corporate tax analyst for Danaher . . . MATT WALKER lives in Marina Del Ray, CA, and works for Lieberman Research Worldwide . . . COLE WORLEY is a lifestyle marketing manager for Hathor Investment Group in Bangkok, Thailand.

2003 MEREDITH BATCHELLER, a graduate of Dartmouth University, is working in Stamford, CT, doing sports marketing . . . Following graduation from Georgetown University, BRANDON COX is a corporate paralegal for Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz in Manhattan and deciding on law school . . . JOEY DEGRANDIS is an account executive for Golden Age Entertainment for the Integrated Media Corp in New York City. He is a Fordham University grad . . . Now living in Mid Wales, United Kingdom, AMY FALLER graduated from Denison University with degrees in sociology/anthropology and Spanish . . . JESSE FISHMAN lives in Denver, CO, and is a Fellow in People for the American Way Foundation’s YP4 Leadership Academy. Through the program, she is working for Colorado Ethics Watch, a legal-based nonpartisan nonprofit dedicated to ethics and accountability in government . . . JIM KOMPERDA is an analyst with KeyCorp in Orlando, FL . . . New York University graduate KELLY MARCEAU is a Research Study Assistant for Prostate Clinical Trials at Memorial Sloan Kettering . . . After graduating from John Carroll University with a marketing major, ROBB NARDY now works for JadeSterling Steel . . . Living in Solon, OH, BRANDON ROUSH does marketing work for . . . Working in New York City is Fordham graduate CHARLIE SCARAVELLI . . . JENN SCOTT is an Ensign in the United States Navy, working as a nurse and stationed in Virginia . . . KELLY STRAND performs with Columbus Children’s Theater touring at elementary

An Invitation to Alumni Parents Ever

feel that you might be missing out on the fun and friendships you enjoyed when your son or daughter was a Gilmour Academy student? Join Gilmour Academy’s Alumni Parents Association and reconnect with parents you met while your children were students here. The organization

Tayek, Vyto and Kathleen Mekesa, and Mary Beth and Don Link plans the events. “Parents ask how they can stay active with Gilmour when their last child has graduated,” says Development Director Jim Farrar ’59. “They miss their connection with Gilmour and the friendships they had formed with other parents. Now they have their own organization to reactivate those friendships.” Parents of the Class of 2008 are most welcome and encouraged to join. For further information contact Jim Farrar at or call 1-888-399-0440 or 440-473-8013.

Mary Pryatel, Br. Robert Kelly, Marianne Turocy

that began in 2003 now has 145 members. Since the beginning of the school year, alumni parents have met for a steak roast outside Tudor House in August and a clambake in October, celebrated St. Patrick’s Day at Claddagh Irish Pub at Legacy Village, and gathered for a Communion breakfast in Gilmour’s Holy Cross Room. In June, the group will attend a private beer school and taste fabulous brews at Great Lakes Brewing Co. Anyone who has offspring who graduated from the Academy is welcome to join. Just $20 per household annually earns access to a world of fun plus a family athletic pass to the Lancers’ athletic events on campus and an invitation to the annual Women’s Club Christmas Party. Annual membership runs concurrent with Gilmour’s fiscal year, July 1 to June 30. Gilmour mails membership applications each June to local parents of graduates. Past social events have included a Cleveland Orchestra concert at Blossom Music Center, a night at the races at Northfield Park, a Lake County Captains baseball game, and dinner and a musical performance at Playhouse Square. A leadership group of Kathie and John Fagan, Lola and Joe Tarasco, Bob and Maria

Nancy Junglas at the Warm It Up St. Patrick’s Day

Tony Panzica ’71, Cindy Deyling and John Fagan

Mike and Paulette Poklar, Donna and Tim ’73 Panzica at the GAAPA Clambake


A l u m n i

schools and libraries throughout the state . . . University of Notre Dame graduate RYAN TAYLOR is a financial analyst for the Bank of Ireland in Connecticut . . . CAROLYN BENACCI is an Assistant Media Planner for DRAFTFCB in Chicago, IL . . . LINDSEY STEFFEN graduated from Boston College. She will be getting her masters degree in 20th Century British Literature at the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom.


SOFIA ACOSTA recently returned from France after completing an international exchange program . . . Princeton University senior REBECCA ALLEN is studying ecology and biology. She recently played in the championships for Princeton’s rugby team . . . ERIC CARABOOLAD, a senior at Fairfield University majoring in sociology, works for MGH, a counseling center. Last summer he interned at the inpatient psychiatric ward at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston . . . Playing hockey for the University of Illinois, TOM CONNELL plans to attend graduate school for business in the fall . . . DAN GESSNER, a graduate of Oberlin College, has been awarded the Thomas J. Watson Fellowship for a year of travel and independent study. Dan, who pursued a double major in biology and politics, intends to use the grant to study and compare universal health care systems in the United Kingdom, Sweden, South Africa, and India . . . United States Army Infantryman DEVIN HOGAN is stationed at Ft. Myer, VA . . . Following graduation this spring, DUNCAN KLUWAK will join Hatch, an energy and mining company in


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Canada, as an engineer . . . A recent graduate of Yale University, BRAD BROADHEAD will be moving to Minneapolis, MN, to work as a financial analyst for General Mills . . . Graduating from the University of Rochester in May, ERIKA BLAIR will enjoy the summer resting and visiting family and friends before entering New York Medical College in August.


KEVIN BENACCI co-chaired Boston College’s first Relay for Life, a benefit for the American Cancer Society. The effort helped raise over $100,000 and involved over 900 people. In past years, Boston College students participated in the all-university relay with other Boston schools . . . DePaul University student MARIANNE DERGHAM was named to the dean’s list for the 2007 autumn quarter . . . Ohio Wesleyan student MEGAN DOWNING recently returned from a semester studying abroad in Salamanca, Spain . . . JILLIAN ECKART was named to the dean’s list at Mount Union College . . . A junior at Ashland University majoring in social work, CAITLIN GRANT made the dean’s list for the fall semester . . . RINA RESTAINO, a junior at NYU, has secured an internship in production management with MTV . . . Working in New York University’s Biology Department as a senior research technician and lab manager, PAUL SCHEID also goes to school fulltime. . . On the dean’s list at Taylor University, junior KELLEY WILSON is majoring in elementary education . . . MATT WEISMAN, a senior this fall, will start on Ohio Wesleyan’s football team as a weak-side linebacker.

2006 JENNIFER DAWN BURGER is majoring in geobiology at the University of Rochester and plans to attend graduate school in marine science . . . MEGAN WEISMAN, a member of the honors accounting program at The Ohio State University, was one of two students (out of a class of 2,000) to receive an accounting award from Ernst and Young, which includes a $10,000 scholarship. Megan also is a Fisher Futures’ recipient; between five and 10 students are selected for this program. She will participate in an internship on Wall Street during the summer after her junior year.


CAROLYN BAUMGARTEN, a student at Elon University, participated in Fresh TV, an accelerated media class, and produced video clips and media projects. She competed in the Mock Trial at the University of Richmond Spider Invitational and Elon’s Carolina Classic. Carolyn was named to the dean’s list and cum laude with a 3.6 GPA . . . BRETT WILSON, majoring in philosophy, made the dean’s list at Taylor University . . . Playing on the hockey team at Hobart College, KYLE WHITAKER received the Most Improved Player Award. In the beginning of the season, Kyle battled for a spot in the lineup and ended up in every playoff game (including NCAAs) and was a critical part of special teams. He also was selected into Hobart ’s Orange Key Society, recognizing the 20 most well-rounded, involved sophomore students on campus.

Varsity Football


This year’s tough schedule primed the Lancers for another shot at the postseason. During an 8-1 season, the Lancers rolled over Hawken 42-6 and edged out Harvey 35-33. Defeat came against a fast and athletic Warrensville Heights, but the Lancers bounced back and won the five remaining games, positioning the team for the playoffs. GA faced a tough team from Vienna Mathews, but the Lancer defense shut down Mathews, forcing turnover after turnover. Tommy Hallal ’09 scored five touchdowns, leading the Lancers to a 33-13 victory. GA faced North Lima South Ridge in the second round of the playoffs. Their speed and strong defense made them a tough opponent, and they overtook the Lancers 23-0. The 2008 offense saw great blocking from seniors Pat Crowe, Ted Howell, Matt Mihalik, Larry Kramer, and Dennis Siedlak. Quarterback Billy Urban ’09 anchored the offense and threw for more than 2,000 yards. Core runners included Tommy Hallal ’09, Ryan Teknipp ’09, and Tim Valla ’09. Wide receivers Lou Cangelosi ’09 and Kevin Komperda ’08 led the team in receptions. Will O'Brien ’09

After losing three of its top five golfers from last year's team, which placed fifth at state, the Varsity Golf Team was in a rebuilding mode. Although the Lancers started off strong, winning its first five matches, the team lost a seventh consecutive trip to the state tournament. The Lancers came in second at the sectional tournament with a chance to qualify for the tournament, but faced a heartbreaker at districts, placing third – two strokes behind second place and four strokes from first. Len DeFino ’09 and John Coyne ’09, back from last year's squad, were team captains. Pat Kennedy ’08 fine-tuned his game while Greg Calabrese ’11 and John Chaney ’11 proved to be skilled players. With four out of five golfers returning, the team is poised to make another run at the state title. John Coyne ’09


L a n c e r

A t h l e t i c s

It’s a Wrap for

“I’ve worked hard at the game of baseball and it has been a nice ride.”

Ray Sharnsky

Ray Sharnsky

ay Sharnsky retired after 29 years with Gilmour Academy late last year. He wore many hats over three decades – Instructor in Physical Education and Head Coach of baseball and golf, teacher of business and then economics. He led Gilmour’s Varsity Golf Team to four straight state titles. In 2004, Coach Sharnsky was inducted into the Ohio High School Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, only one of four coaches throughout the state selected for the honor that year. He once said his philosophy of coaching was to help players master the basic concepts of the game to be successful. Mr. Sharnsky’s son Brian will be a senior at Gilmour. After graduating from Akron Hoban High School, Mr. Sharnsky earned two baccalaureate degrees from the University of Akron and a master’s degree from John Carroll University. He began his coaching career at Akron Hoban before coming to Gilmour in 1978. He also coached the Canton Crocodiles, a Class A independent baseball team and a feeder team for the Major Leagues. During his tenure, Gilmour’s Varsity Baseball Team won a dozen championships between the MAC-8 league and the Southeast Conference (SEC). It also competed in seven regional championships, ranked among the top 20 teams 16 times, and made the “Sweet 16” six times. Under his direction, the Varsity Golf Team had spectacular seasons from 1991 through 1994. Coach Sharnsky was President of the Ohio High School Baseball Coaches Association in 1988 and has served as chairman of several of its committees. In addition, he directed the Flick Summer High School League and ran both a summer baseball camp at Gilmour, and a Christmas baseball camp for fifth graders. As the baseball coach, he has been named Coach of the Year in the Northeast District, the Greater Cleveland Association, and the Plain Dealer and News-Herald newspapers, and he was conference Coach of the Year in the SEC/MAC-8 baseball conferences. He has served on the Ohio District Board, the Northeast Ohio Board, and the Greater Cleveland Baseball Coaches Association Board. In commenting on his career he told a local reporter, “I’ve worked hard at the game of baseball and it has been a nice ride.” Over the years, Coach Sharnsky welcomed many of his returning players who come back to visit and several have coached for him during summer camp. He always enjoys reminiscing with them about their fond memories of their high school sports days. He is currently a volunteer baseball coach for Gilmour’s varsity team and is working to achieve 500 wins as a coach. At press time, his leadership guided the varsity baseball team to the state playoff semifinal game for the first time ever.




Net Gain for the Lancers

The return of last year’s starting players n another big finish for Gilmour, made it easy for the Girls Varsity the Girls Varsity Volleyball Team Volleyball Team to prepare for another advanced to the Division III state successful season. The Lancers took championship at Wright State last year's mottos “Dayton or Bust” and University in Dayton last fall. Coach “Play Like Champions” to the next level, and in the process made school history. Jeff Grzybowski, who has believed in The season began with a tough loss to the team’s talent from the get-go, was St. Joseph Academy, but the Lancers named The Plain Dealer Coach of the went on to win the Chagrin Falls Year for Volleyball after winning the Tournament. Particularly satisfying same award in 2006 from The Newswas an emotional win over Beaumont. Herald. Seeded first in the Berkshire district, In just two years at the helm, GA received a first round bye, won Coach Grzybowski has made sectionals, and earned a second straight volleyball a hot sport at Gilmour with district title, advancing to regionals. a record of 48-5 for the two seasons. After a five-game match, GA topped Northwestern High School and beat Last year, the Lancers competed in the Jess Hammer ’09 Independence in only three games. The regional finals and this season made the state finals for next stop was the state tournament in Dayton, a first for the first time as Coach Grzbowski helped his players Gilmour’s volleyball program. The team advanced to build on their momentum from 2006 and jump to the the Final Four, facing Albany Alexander in the semifinal next level. Though the team lost by a mere point to round. Down 0-2, the Lancers battled to win games the Albany Alexander Spartans in the championship, three and four, forcing a fifth game, but suffered a it was a great 24-4 season for the Lancers. As for his heartbreaking loss of 16-14. coaching philosophy, Mr. Grzybowski regards it as Brittany Razek ’08 survival of the fittest. “There’s not much more you could ask from these girls,” he says. The coach has a certain synergy with his players, and they have a handle on what makes him tick. Gilmour’s Eileen The first match against Mayfield Lane ’08 told The News-Herald that “Coach is all looked grim with three teams about focus.” down a set, but both doubles teams and second singles Baseball and biking are his favorite sports – rebounded to bring victory to the the former played at Cleveland State, the latter as a Lancers. Co-Captains Jennifer two-time Criterium silver medalist in bike racing. The Snyder ’08 (first singles) and Gilmour coach has been a competitive bike racer for Maria Young ’08 (first doubles) 15 years and claims his Airborne Competition bicycle led the team to success. Coach as his most valuable possession. A former English Cyndi Smith noted that they teacher, Coach Grzybowski works for a mortgage worked hard in the off-season service firm. His wife Kim Walden, previously a participating in clinics, drills, and volleyball coach at a local high school, assists him tournaments to improve upon with the Gilmour team along with Dan Bezik and their skills. Allison Althans ’11 Rachel Noall ’10 advanced to the second round of sectionals while Dayna Nevar. Jennifer competed in the state championship. Maria Young ’08


Girls Tennis


L a n c e r

A t h l e t i c s

Girls Varsity Soccer With the loss of several key players from last year, the team faced challenges right from the beginning. After a shaky start with only one win in the first five games, the competition against Hawken was the season’s turning point. Gilmour was down by two goals at the half, but came back Kelly Kertis ’11 to tie. The girls began to rally around each other and to play together as a team. Led by Hallie Rybka ’08 and captains Kristen Profeta ’09, Jamie Austin ’09, and Megan Schaefer ’09, the team made a 9-1 run until losing to Lake Catholic in the playoffs. Hallie Rybka ’08

Boys Varsity Soccer The Lancers were off to a great season as Brandon Cook ’08 led the team with 24 goals and 5 assists. First-year player Nate Campbell ’09 did a great job as goalkeeper, garnering three shutouts. Season highlights included a tie against Orange, a win over Perry, and a second round win against Kirtland during the playoffs. The season ended in overtime against Wickliffe in the third round of the playoffs. Mike Ciuni, Yann Schoenhagen, Brandon, Chris Fagan, Nate Peter Schmidt-Sane ’09 Campbell, and Ryan Caraboolad from the Class of 2008, Leo Sideras ’10, and Matt Pestotnik ’11 earned accolades, and the Lancers won Team Academic All-Ohio with a 3.3 GPA and finished off the season as district semifinalists with a record of 8-9-1. Brian Pestotnik ’08


Girls Cross Country The defending state champion Lancers began the season with high expectations, a tough meet schedule, many new faces, and a lot of enthusiasm. The Lancers faced many of the top teams in the state, always coming away with excellent finishes, cementing their reputation as one of the premier cross country teams in Northeast Ohio. Some of the season highlights included championships at the Gilmour Invitational and the Legends Meet. The girls secured Hannah May ’10 their third straight trip to the state meet after defending their district and regional titles. At the state meet, five of the seven varsity runners set personal bests in an exciting race that went down to the wire, with the Lancers finishing in second place. Rebekka Simko ’10 and Melanie Frank ’09 were both recognized as All-Ohioans for their places at the state meet. Natalie King ’09 was voted outstanding runner, and Brigid Titgemeier ’08 won the Lancer Award. Coach Matthew Lindley ’89

Boys Cross Country After losing five seniors last season (four were varsity starters), Bart Merkel ’10 and Yann Schoenhagen ’08 led the team to the regional finals. Jackson Sroub ’09, Alex Keene ’10, and Kevin Vargo ’11 gave the team a boost going into postseason. After finishing second to Trinity at the District Championship, the boys were Andrew Shibley ’11 optimistic going into one of the hardest regions in the state. The regional final at Boardman was a hard-fought race with a seventh place finish. Yann qualified individually for his third straight state meet, and Bart joined him for the first time. Andrew Shibley ’08

Cheerleading Patty Strano got some help this year from a new coach, Chris Catanese. The girls prepped their stunting and tumbling to prepare for the new season. The Lancer squad cheered loudly and clearly at each game with more enthusiasm and school spirit as the season progressed. An increase in practice time produced greater focus for the squad. Despite a decrease in members from last year, the Lancer cheerleaders looked sharper than they ever have in the past. Brooke Marie Witter-Jarvis ’10

Girls Swim Team This year the Lancers faced tough competition, but the girls swim team displayed heart and endurance as they defeated many competitive teams including Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin. The best meet overall for the team was a second place finish at the Independent School League Championship, with most swimmers achieving their personal best in their events. Eight Lancers advanced to the district meet, and four continued on to the state championship. Allie Mawby ’11, Allie Kasuboski ’11, Sarah Hostoffer ’11, and Allie Castelaz ’09 Allison Murray ’10 swam the 200 medley relay, finishing 22nd in the state. Allison Murray also swam the 100 butterfly at state, ranking 23rd. With only two girls graduating, the team will continue to grow stronger and be even more successful next year. Allie Greco ’08 and Grace O'Rourke ’08

State University. Alec competed in districts in the 200 and 500 freestyle events. Derek placed 10th in the district meet in the 200 individual medley and 8th in the 100 breaststroke. Allie Greco ’08 and Grace O'Rourke ’08 Sam Freiberg ’11

Girls Prep Hockey The Girls Prep Team played in the North American Prep Hockey Association (NAPHA) league with some of the top prep schools on the East Coast and in Canada. This year, the team had only 8 of 60 games at home, which made for a grueling schedule. The Cushing Invitational in Ashburnham, MA, was a tournament of achievements. The Lancers beat National Sports Academy for the first time and placed fourth, its highest place ever, in that tournament. In the Mid-Am Regional Tournament hosted by Ashley Reid ’08 the Ohio Flames, the Lancers defeated the Pittsburgh Amateur Penguins 6-0. Two goals each by Kayla Ross ’09 and Drew Cherniski ’08 and one each from Lauren Campbell ’08 and Lauren Posillico ’08, combined with good goaltending by Alana Marcinko ’09, helped lead the team to victory and the chance to play the Flames in the finals next year. Half the team will return to continue the Lancers’ reputation as a strong, competitive team. Amy Torgerson ’08

Boys Swim Team

Boys Prep Hockey

The eight-member team defeated Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin and Benedictine. Captains Derek Neal ’08 and Mike Pryatel ’08 led the team to an impressive finish at the sectional meet, and many members finished with personal best times. At sectionals, Derek and Alec Janda ’10 advanced to the district meet at Cleveland

The Lancers chalked up several firsts this year. The Prep Team won its first tournament in its four-year history at the Blue Jackets Jamboree Tournament over winter break. They defeated five opponents by an average of five goals, leading to the championship game against 16th-ranked St. Louis Jr. Blues. The Blues


L a n c e r

A t h l e t i c s

proved to be no match for the Lancers as Gilmour won the game 2-0, capturing the title. In another first, the Lancers captured the top spot in the St. Andrew's Tournament. They were matched against host St. Andrews College, winning 4-3 in overtime. Chris Tim McDougall ’08 Neamonitis ’09 was named tournament MVP. Other individual standouts included Chris Ciotti ’09, who led the way on the offensive front, and Cam Severson ’08 and Shay Cizmar ’08, who racked up more than a point per game. Jeremy Melbye ’07

Boys Varsity B Hockey

Boys Varsity A Hockey

Although the team had no returning seniors and only 11 full-time members, the Lancers had a great season. They competed in the Bishop Moore Basketball Tournament in Florida, playing the best teams in the state and tough teams from across the country, which boosted the team’s confidence. After returning home, the girls won six out of seven games, eventually making it past sectionals and into the district semifinals, but lost to Brookfield, ending their Allison Herbe ’10 season with 15 wins and 8 losses. Every player plans to return with a solid season behind her. Tricia King ’10

Not only did the Lancers make it to the Final Four this year, they also became Ohio High School Hockey state runner-up. Despite a seven-game losing streak at the beginning of the year, Gilmour rumbled past the St. Xavier Bombers and gave the St. Edward Eagles a run for their money. With only four returning seniors, the Lancers hustled their way to the district finals. Gilmour feared losing to University School in the district final for the third conJohn Hanna ’08 secutive year, but this time was not matched with rival US but with the physical Mentor Cardinals team. The game was no cake-walk. The score was tied 3-3 going into overtime when Billy Davis ’10 came down on a breakaway and scored between the goalie’s legs, sending the Gilmour Lancers to the Final Four. Noah Hirshman ’09


Veteran Gilmour players and those new to the Gilmour hockey program joined ranks in early November to form the Varsity B team. What emerged in midFebruary was no longer a group of individuals, but a team. Varsity B had a successful inaugural season with trips to Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and to Indianapolis, IN. Game highlights included an exciting overtime win over St. Ignatius and a shootout win over Padua. Many Varsity B players were invited to play in Varsity A games and did a great job contributing to both teams. Braeden Quast ’10

Girls Varsity Basketball

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A t h l e t i c s


Rick Layton ’11

Boys Varsity Basketball Although the Lancers 8-13 record this season did not reflect the team’s talent and potential, it was a season to remember with Lancer victories over teams from stronger divisions such as Maple Heights and Mayfield. The biggest and most satisfying win was against University School. The battle of SOM Center Road was split as the Lancers and Preppers squared off twice. Highlights from the season included a 76-75 victory when Kevin Komperda ’08 hit a lastsecond 3-pointer to defeat the Division I Mayfield Wildcats, an overtime win against Eastlake North, a victory over Division I Maple, and the televised playoff game against Cleveland Central Catholic, which resulted in a disappointing loss. Kevin was the leading scorer; Patrick Embleton ’08, Nate Campbell ’08, and Ricky Kertis ’09 topped the charts in rebounds; and Len DeFino ’09 led in assists. Len DeFino ’09

ob Beutel takes his success as a coach in stride; he is part of an elite roster of high school coaches with 500 basketball wins under his belt. As Head Coach of Gilmour’s Girls Varsity Basketball Team, he does not let this milestone go to his head, even though fewer than 10 coaches in Ohio’s basketball history can lay claim to such a feat. Instead, Coach Beutel diverts the attention from himself to the Lancer team. “When something like this happens it is because you surround yourself with great people: players, managers, administrators,” says Mr. Beutel, who has coached for 28 years – three at Gilmour. “It is something that happens if you stay in the game long enough.” Although many regard him as one of the best high school girls’ varsity coaches in the state, he believes it was right to credit the team when Gilmour defeated Geneva 52-43 on January 30 for the historic 500th win. “This team deserves that because they are such a scrappy bunch,” he said. “I have a group of players who really love the game and play hard.” His low-key manner is a reflection of his coaching philosophy. “We don’t talk about individual accomplishments,” he says. “It would be hard for me to tell my players ‘We go; we go together,’ and then focus on one milestone without turning it into something positive for the team.” When the big night came, Coach Beutel was surrounded by cheers from former and current players, coaches, boosters, and several hundred fans. His wife Claudia, an assistant coach for the team, gave Bob a big hug; then there was a cake to top off the evening. Gilmour Lancers sported t-shirts with the words “500 wins. Oh My.” Division I Coach of the Year in 1999-2000, Coach Beutel has earned that title almost every year since 1982 from one organization or another. Wrapping up another Lancer season with a 15-8 record and a trip to the district semifinals, he says, “It was a fantastic year for the team. We are very young (no seniors), and the players competed in every game against a real tough schedule. Out of 20 regular season games, I think 14 were against Division I and II teams.” The upside of having a young team is that everyone will return next season, and the players plan to take it to the next level, he says. Mr. Beutel remarks that the team has always believed in scoring a lot of points through both offense and defense. “We are a quick and intelligent team,” he says noting that the team uses complex defensive plays befitting bright student-athletes. Coach Beutel is staunch about players being scholarly and athletic. He regards education as the priority. “I have coached only one student in my career who went on to compete in the Women’s National Basketball Association,” he says, reinforcing his belief that his players must focus on getting a good education.


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Lineman Picks University of Virginia


t’s official. Gilmour Academy offensive tackle Matt Mihalik officially signed a National Letter of Intent with the University of Virginia in February. He will receive a full four-year NCAA scholarship covering tuition, room, and board. The 6-7, 294-pound senior had been courted by the Division I school Matt Mihalik ’08 in Charlottesville since September 2006. In fact, Matt was the first player to commit from the program’s 2008 class. “I am really not surprised that a school as highly rated as Virginia was interested in him,” says Gilmour Head Football Coach Bob Spicer. “I am sure Virginia selected a fine football player. It was a privilege to coach Matt these past four years.” The Gilmour coach said that Matt was an integral part of the Lancers’ success during his four years as defensive tackle. The Lancers advanced to postseason playoffs five of the last six years and wrapped up its

2007 season with a 9-2 record and a postseason win. Cocaptain of the Lancers Varsity Football Team last year, Matt had a 96 percent blocking average. He earned Division V All-Ohio First Team honors and was named Division V Co-Offensive All-District MVP. The lineman was selected by Virginia for his quickness, athleticism, and technique. He plans to study psychology in college. In addition to playing varsity tackle all four years at the Academy, Matt played several seasons of varsity baseball and basketball. “This is a huge burden off my shoulders,” Matt says. “I know I still have to work really hard, but I am happy to know that I am going to Virginia. I did it.”

Swimming With the Big Fish


olumbia University has accepted senior Derek Neal for its Division I varsity swim team next season. Captain of Gilmour’s Boys Varsity Swim Team, Derek began swimming on a recreational team when Derek Neal ’08 he was 6 years old. The threetime state qualifier has been undefeated in individual events at dual meets, home and away, since 10th grade. “Derek has been instrumental in the growth and progress of the Boys Varsity Swim Team these past four years,” says Head Coach Adam Katz. “He is an extremely hard worker, and we are proud of what he has accomplished and surely will accomplish at Columbia.”


The National Honor Society president also has been part of Gilmour’s Catalyst Program, Speech and Debate Team, Cum Laude Society, Spanish Honor Society, Blue and Gray Club, and Eucharist Ministry. He plans to study chemical engineering at Columbia with an eye toward becoming an astronaut. Coach Katz notes that Derek is well-rounded and a celebrated student both in the pool and in the classroom. “He understands that he has a God-given talent and is focused on using that talent to the best of his ability,” Mr. Katz says. Derek plans to train hard next summer so he will be in top shape next year. “The swim program at Columbia is very competitive, and I think I will have a lot of opportunity to improve and help the team,” Derek says. He adds that he is excited to receive an Ivy League education and to swim for a Division I school.

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Wear Your Lancer Pride . . . . . . on your sleeve, your chest, your back, and your head with casual apparel that shouts Gilmour Blue and Gray! The latest in LancerWear is just a mouse click away. Select snazzy t-shirts, hoodies, gym and casual wear; caps and sweaters; fleece and flannel; mittens and more. Keep cozy at games with fleece blankets and mugs and lug your LancerGear around in our bags and totes. LancerWear is sized to fit youngsters, students, and adults. Find great gift ideas for all your needs. Browse our website to view products and prices, and then start shopping and stocking up on your LancerWear. You can never have enough! Branding Solutions, Gilmour’s new source for all your LancerWear, can ship your purchase to you for an additional fee, or you can make arrangements to pick it up at their convenient location at 4435 Renaissance Parkway, Warrensville Hts, Ohio 44128 (near the corner of Richmond and Emery Roads). Sport your LancerWear and show your Gilmour pride.

To speak with Sheryl Sperling or Rob Platt call 216-831-9595 or toll free 1-866-400-8754.

M e m o r i a l

Michael Joseph Kiley ’52


n one of the early chapters of the founding and history of Gilmour Academy, a young dark-haired Michael Kiley ’52 stands with his arms crossed wearing a white butcher-style apron. The photo was taken at the senior year class play “Brother Orchid” in Rockne Fieldhouse. Mr. Kiley died in May at his home. A resident of Marion, Indiana, Mike was a loyal Gilmour supporter over the years and loved the Holy Cross Brothers. “Never missed a Gilmour class reunion; I like to see the guys,” he said. Born in 1934, the alum attended Gilmour throughout high school and graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1956. While studying for his law degree, which he received from Georgetown University in 1959, Mr. Kiley worked on the Capitol Hill Police Force. He was part of the Honor Guard in the Capitol when the remains of unknown soldiers from World War II and the Korean War lied in state. “I learned how to study at Gilmour whether I wanted to or not,” Mike told Gilmour Magazine last year. “As a result, I never had any problems at Notre Dame, Georgetown, or thereafter.”

Mr. Kiley served as Marion City Court Judge from 1963-1970. He was appointed by the governor to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources Board in 1978 and served in that position for 27 years 15 as chairman. He was a Board member of the Indiana Bar Association and a Trustee of the Indiana Bar Foundation. Both sessions of the Indiana legislature recognized his contributions to the legal profession and his years as chairman of the Department of Natural Resources Commission. Mike’s connection with Notre Dame always remained strong and he was on the university’s National Alumni Board and was Vice President of its National Alumni Association. He was a Trustee of Holy Cross College and its chair from 2000-2004 and was President of the Alumni Board at Culver Military Academy. The Indianapolis Athletic Club named Mike Irishman of the Year in 1992. Mike and his wife Carol were married for 50 years and have three children and four grandchildren.

John Malcolm Pennington ’71


multi-sport letterman at Gilmour Academy and an ace football player, John Pennington died March 4 of cancer at his home in Beaufort, South Carolina. He was 55. J.P. as his friends called him grew up in Shaker Heights and attended St. Dominic School. He was especially proud of playing on Gilmour’s Varsity Football Team during its undefeated 1968 season. “You could always count on J.P. to get us out of trouble with his punting – in wind, mud, sleet or snow,” said Vern Weber, who coached him in football. Two of John’s brothers – William ’65 and Robert ’69 – also graduated from Gilmour.


After his high school graduation, John attended Springfield College in Massachusetts and later married Monica Duer, his wife of 35 years and sister of Gilmour classmate Jeff Duer ’71. After honeymooning in Hilton Head, the couple stayed on there and John was involved with a local golf course. At one point, he had the opportunity to qualify for the U.S. Open. His wife was his caddy. They eventually moved to Beaufort where they owned and operated the Baytown Grille restaurant for more than 16 years. John was head chef and Monica managed the customer side. The restaurant was a favorite of locals and tourists.

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Brother Gerald Comeau, C.S.C. G

ilmour alumni from the late 1950s and early 1960s are not likely to forget Brother Gerald (Alfonso) Comeau, C.S.C., the Academy’s third Headmaster. Brother died February 29 at the University of Notre Dame. According to those who knew him, he was a “big, powerful man with a lusty singing voice.” During Brother Gerald (Alfonso) Brother Gerald’s nine-year Comeau, C.S.C., ca. 1960 tenure as Headmaster, and as Superior dating from 1955 to 1964, construction was completed on Gilmour’s swimming pool and two-story library. In the history volume prepared for Gilmour’s 50th anniversary, Brother Gerald is described as “tough as a drill sergeant, a disciplinarian and a doer.” To many students, he was “Alfonso the Magnificent,” earning the admiration of everyone associated with Gilmour. “He was a big, strong, physical man,” said Jim Farrar ’59, Gilmour’s Development Director. When asked about his days at Gilmour, Brother Gerald once commented that “I used to sometimes just sit and take in the beauty of the place.” Born and bred in Brooklyn, Brother Gerald, who relinquished his religious name for his baptismal name, was a tireless educator who regarded Gilmour students as “good kids, serious, aware of their responsibilities, and they worked hard.” His father Joseph Comeau was a French Canadian carpenter from Nova Scotia, and his

mother Mary (Mahoney) was born in County Cork. The former Headmaster joined the Congregation of Holy Cross in 1940 and made his first profession in 1941 and his final profession in 1944. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in history from the University of Notre Dame and did additional studies at John Carroll University. His training was in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts, and throughout much of his career he taught history, religion, and English. Prior to coming to Gilmour, Brother Gerald was assigned to teach at Holy Cross School in New Orleans becoming its Headmaster and Superior in 1948. He also held those same positions at Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks, California. “Brother Gerald decided that the Congregation of Holy Cross needed to develop stronger college counselors for students,” said Brother Donald Blauvelt, C.S.C., Provincial of the Southwest Province. He became certified as a college counselor after studying at California State University, Long Beach and served in that capacity at Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks. “He was a very good college counselor, helping students know exactly what they needed to do to gain scholarships and college entrance,” Brother Donald said. The former teacher and counselor retired in 1995. Brother Donald gave the eulogy at the Mass of Christian Burial March 3. “What many people didn’t know about Brother Gerald was that he was wonderful with visiting old people who were shut-ins on weekends and after hours,” he said. “He would listen and talk to them. They were his ministry.”


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Sister Rita Ferry, H.M. “H

ope is not just a medicine for the end of one’s days. It should color one’s attitude all through life,” said Sister Rita Ferry, H.M., who died of cancer March 11. She was a Religious Instructor at Gilmour from 2000 to 2002 and taught Christian Morality and Ethics to juniors. Sister Rita also worked in the Guidance Department from 2000 to 2005 and was a member of Gilmour’s Pastoral Life Team. She ministered to resident students and planned Sunday evening prayer services. Known for her “zest for life and complete involvement in living,” she had celebrated her Golden Jubilee in the Sisters of the Holy Humility of Mary 10 months earlier. “Sister Rita was a wonderful, compassionate, caring person who reached out to others, be it students, parents, or colleagues,” said Brother Robert Lavelle, C.S.C., Gilmour’s Headmaster. “She was valiant in dealing with her cancer.” After she was treated for the disease, Sister Rita presented a talk about hope in 2005 and addressed a paradox of existence. “From the perspective of the world, our sufferings and small dyings are unmitigated evil,” she said. “For a life of hope, they are blessings.” Prior to her work at Gilmour, she was Supervising Counselor and a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor with her order. She also had been in private practice as a psychotherapist working with individual and group clients. A social worker with the Geauga County Department of Human Services and Principal at both St. Ambrose and St. Raphael schools, Sister Rita earned a bachelor’s degree in education from St. John College, a master’s degree in counseling and human services from John Carroll University, and a master’s degree in education from Kent State University. Throughout her 42 years in the Cleveland Diocese, she taught at Catholic elementary schools in Painesville, Rocky River, and Maple Heights.


“Sister Rita loved teaching and being with young people,” said Yvonne Saunders, Director of the Middle School and Assistant Director of the Upper School. “She lived the Holy Cross mission of educating both minds and hearts as she shared her knowledge and spirituality with her students.” Ms. Saunders, Coordinator of Pastoral Life at Gilmour, worked with the nun in the school’s pastoral ministry program. “Sister Rita accepted her students just as they were and then challenged them to grow and be their best, never forgetting that a sense of humor will help you through the challenges of life,” she added. Greatly admired by her fellow sisters and all who knew her, Sister Rita enjoyed golfing and parties, especially her 70th birthday party. “She truly lived until she lived into her new life – embracing the moment, enjoying friends, family, and even Babe the cat who timidly joined those at the party,” said Sister Ruthmary Powers, H.M. Formerly known as Sister Mary Maurice, Sister Rita had a knack for enriching her friendships with those in her life to the extent they would forge friendships with each other. At a Mass of the Resurrection March 15 at Villa Maria Community Center in Pennsylvania, Sister Ruthmary paid homage to her friend, noting that, even in her great pain with cancer, Sister Rita “continued to look straight into the depths of that suffering and allow it, through the Grace of God, to transform her, and in so doing, all of those whom she met.”

M e m o r i a l

MEMORIAL Gilmour Academy expresses sympathy to the families of the following:

Our sympathy also is extended to the alumni and families of the following: VERONICA R. AVERBACH, mother of Ann ’97; aunt of Anna Pinchak Lillis ’96, Cyril ’02 and Andrea ’02 Pinchak, and Stephanie Kimery ’09


DENA BARKOUKIS, grandmother of Andrea ’00 THOMAS BARRETT, father of Thomas ’66 and Charles ’73; grandfather of Megan ’99 ROSE BEGAN, aunt of Robert Liotta ’93

MARVIN S. COOK, grandfather of Brian ’84 LEONARD COPUS, grandfather of Anthony DeCamillo ’12 HELEN AILEEN CORKRAN, grandmother of Shannon ’99, Kaitlin ’00 and Gregory ’06 DENNIS DAVIS, SR., father of Dennis Davis, Jr. ’90 SHIRLEY JOYCE DUBBS, mother of Robert ’74 THOMAS C. EVANS, father of Jennifer ’82


FRANK A. BETHARDY, SR., grandfather of Alex Haluska ’12

GERTRUDE FELLER, mother of former Headmaster’s Secretary Debbie Glassman


CARINE BOLAND, grandmother of David Krueger ’02

DOROTHY T. FERRARA, mother of Thomas ’56

ANNA C. CALLAGHAN, sister of Thomas ’65 and Dorothy Callaghan Gunn G.O. ’72

SR. RITA FERRY, H.M., Upper School Instructor


WILLIAM B. CLEVELAND, grandfather of William ’17


MONROE COLE, father of Scott ’82 BR. GERALD COMEAU, C.S.C., former Gilmour Headmaster JEAN A. CONSOLO, grandmother of Jeffrey ’80, Joseph ’82, Jerrod ’87, and great grandmother of Jerrod, Jr. ’12, and Ian ’17 Borkey

ERNEST U. FISCO. father of Michael ’75 and Barbara ’87 MARY CONSTANCE FLYNN, mother-in-law of Brian Nemunaitis ’84 EDITH M. GATHY, mother of Gregory ’87 ANNE E. GIBBONS, grandmother of Admissions Officer Katie Saunier


M e m o r i a l

LAURA J. GRASSI, mother of Jessica ’05 CHARLES R. HAMMOND, father-in-law of Library Manager Lynn HELEN HASLER, grandmother of Katherine ’09 and David ’13 BR. REX HENNEL, C.S.C., former Gilmour Headmaster HARLAN E. HUMMER, grandfather of Therese ’04 LORI RAE JAMIESON, fiancée of Joseph Klema ’83 LOIS KALINSKY, grandmother of Hannah O’Donnell ’09 MILDRED KASTELIC, grandmother of Nicole ’16, Ryan ’18, and Lauren ’21 ANNA M. KLAUSNER, mother of David ’65 and Gregory ’71; grandmother of David, Jr. ’94 and Brian ’01 JOHN R. KOHN, father of Director of Maintenance Daniel; grandfather of Matthew ’07 MARGARET KOTZ, grandmother of Megan Covington ’11 CARL A. KRAMER, father of Upper School Instructor Cynthia Kramer-Smith; grandfather of Brandon ’05 and Jarred ’06 Smith JIM LAVELLE, grandfather of Michael ’11 and Katharine ’14 Zavagno


IRIDE A. LAVIGNA, mother of Richard ’78; aunt of William ’68 and Robert ’75 CHESTER T. LESINSKI, grandfather of Chris ’05 and Edith ’07 ROBERT LoPRESTI, cousin of Kara ’99 NANCY MANN, mother of Lower School Nurse Megan Chester MICHAEL J. McGINTY father of Bridget McGinty ’02

WILLIAM PHILLIPS, uncle of Matthew Stouffer ’10 MATTHEW W. POCHATEK, nephew of Communications Officer Kathleen McDermott MARGUERITE J. REFICE, mother of Trustee Siobhan Refice-Greene; grandmother of John Greene ’08 MARY E. RIBAR, mother of Margaret G.O. ’73 HAROLD SCHUBERT, step-grandfather of Elizabeth Coerdt ’11

RUDOLPH A. MISMAS, grandfather of Gregory ’97, Matthew ’98, Ryan ’00 and Sarah ’01 Hocevar

JOHN SEMEN, grandfather of James Tominc ’13

KATHLEEN C. MOLLICA, mother of Nicholas ’96

WILLIAM SEMINSKY, JR., uncle of Ryan Hephner ’10

CHRISTINE B. MONDIGE, grandmother of Todd Burrows ’93

WILLIAM C. SHUMAY, grandfather of Daniel ’06 (deceased)

ROBERT E. MORRISON, grandfather of Mark McCreary ’02

ALICE F. STARK, mother-in-law of Lower School Instructor Theresa

KRISTINE NAPIER, mother of Susan ’00 WILLIAM E. O’NEILL, brother of Gilmour benefactors Louise Alexander and Corinne Healey EDWARD OCCHIONERO, grandfather of Matthew ’93, Michael ’96, and Daniel ’00 ROBERT H. OLSON, father of Robert ’62, Gregory ’66, and David ’67 SAM F. PERROTTI, father of Jeffrey ’76

WILLIAM A. TOTO, father of William ’96 and Maria ’97 CLIFF VOSS, grandfather of Upper School Instructor Whitney Daly JOHN C. WASMER, JR., uncle of Robert Durkin ’79 HENRY WILSON, brother-in-law of Upper School Science Instructor Br. Kenneth Kane, C.S.C. EARL WINKELMAN, grandfather of McAllister Castelaz ’09

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Gilmour Academy Spring 2008 Magazine  
Gilmour Academy Spring 2008 Magazine  

Gilmour Academy Spring 2008 Magazine