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TABLE OF CONTENTS FROM THE HEAD OF SCHOOL. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 FEATURES Behind Every Curtain. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Warrior Dad. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 COLLEGE CORNER Trevena Bennett ’14 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 ALUMNI NEWS Lee Kasman ’76, P ’16 Alumni Soccer Game . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 GSB Athletic Hall of Fame . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Alumni Events. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 GSB NEWS Homecoming & Family Day . . . . Performing Arts Center. . . . . . . . GSB Players: The Game’s Afoot. . Lower School Tinker Space . . . . . New Farm Educator . . . . . . . . . . TEDx Conference . . . . . . . . . . . . . Visiting Authors. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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ATHLETICS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 PATRONS Board Members . . . . . . . . A Personal Philanthropy . Giving Tuesday . . . . . . . . GSB Classic. . . . . . . . . . . . Fashion Event . . . . . . . . . . Field House Dedication . .

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ALUMNI NOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 FACULTY NEWS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32

Board of Trustees Gill St. Bernard’s alumni magazine is published three times a year by the Communications & Marketing Department and the Alumni Office. S.A. Rowell, Headmaster Allyson B. Daly, Director of Communications & Marketing Jill Brown, Writer & Communications Specialist Jennifer Doherty, Director of Parent Relations & Special Events James F. Diverio, Director of Development Gwen Paxon , Director of the Annual Fund & Planned Giving Meredith Marks, Assistant Director of Development and Alumni Relations Gill St. Bernard’s School P.O. Box 604, St. Bernard’s Road Gladstone, NJ 07934-0604 908-234-1611 gsbschool.org facebook.com/gsbschool facebook.com/gsbschoolalumni Design by Vision Creative Group Cover Photo: Courtesy of Mike Burke

BOARD OF TRUSTEES Harry Chowansky III Ann Drzik Gia Dunn John Frantz Michael Fritzlo Liz Fucci Donald Fuentes Robert Hemm SBS ’46 Rose Kirk Jeff Lager Douglas Matthews Mark Mazzatta Linda Moore Edmond Moriarty III Elizabeth Nametz Sandi Niccolai James O’Connor Robert O’Leary Preston Pinkett III Steven Polachi

John Raymonds Marianne Saladino Robert Sameth, Jr. ’89 Vlad Torgovnik Janine Udoff Sid Rowell, Ex-Officio HONORARY TRUSTEES Patti Aresty Joe Behot Miguel Brito Laurie Brueckner Brandon Clark Bill Conger Sam Corliss Richard Emmitt Nelson Ferreira Michael Golden Judy Fulton Higby John Howard Adrienne Kirby

Michael Mandelbaum Richard Markham Mary McNamara Patty Muchmore Ellen Nardoni Mark Paris Maureen Stefanick Jayne Vespa Michael Weinstein

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BOARD OF VISITORS Miguel Brito Brandon Clark Sam Corliss David Farris Michael Golden The Honorable Thomas H. Kean Blair MacInnes Edward E. Matthews

MISSION STATEMENT Gill St. Bernard’s School provides a balanced, diverse and secure community that prepares students academically, socially and ethically for college and a meaningful life.

CORE VALUES Courage • Integrity • Respect • Compassion • Excellence

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FROM THE HEAD of SCHOOL

T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B E R N A R D’S S C H O O L

Outdoors, the winter months are traditionally quiet ones on the campus. At Home Winds, the story is much the same—the trees, animals and fields are largely silent, except for the wind or the occasional appearance by a coyote. As the weather begins to warm in March, the onset of spring generates a veritable explosion of activity as students resume their outside activities. It is my hope that many of you will return to Gill this spring to visit, have a chance to reconnect with one another and to see the many changes to the campus. The new Field House has been a tremendous resource for our younger students and JV teams. Work has begun on the new performing arts center, and it promises to fully showcase the wealth of talent at the school. In anticipation of the facility, this magazine’s feature fittingly highlights the work of three alumni in theater. Moving forward, we will continue to spotlight our school’s amazing success and long-standing commitment to the performing arts. In addition to the feature article, the profiles of Mike Burke and Trevena Bennett are both noteworthy and inspirational. Out in California, Burke, GSB’s first true “American Ninja Warrior,” found a way to honor his late wife and set a proud example for his sons, while in Massachusetts, Bennett is honoring the legacy of her father with the L-Train Memorial Foundation and continuing his work. I hope that you enjoy these articles—as well as the class notes and campus news—as much as I did. The magazine remains a great way to stay informed about the current life of the school. Please help us improve on this publication by sharing your updates with us. In addition to nicer weather, bluer skies and greener fields, the spring brings with it alumni weekend and class reunions. I hope you can make it back to Gladstone this year to see for yourself all that is happening.

Sid Rowell

Head of School

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LETTERS

TO THE

EDITOR

T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

TRIPTYCH RESTORATION PROJECT Just a quick note to thank you very much indeed for your thoughtful and sensitive effort in crafting the magazine’s magnificent cover story about the Triptych Restoration Project for its Summer 2016 edition. Not only did your extraordinary piece deftly sidestep potential ecclesiastical pitfalls for the present non-sectarian institution, but also its detailed description of how the restoration work was carried out provided a unique teaching moment for most readers who presumably know little about how such things are actually accomplished in the art world. On behalf of all of us involved in the project – especially the “SBS Old Boys” – renewed thanks on all counts.

David R. Oakley ’47

Take a Turn in the Right Direction Begin Your Philanthropic Journey Would you like to get involved and support GSB in exciting ways? You may be surprised to discover there are many options available with gift planning. Let us help you make a turn in the right direction with a plan customized for you and your goals, so that giving to GSB becomes possible today.

Ready to talk now? Contact Us.

Visit www.gsbschool.org/plannedgiving to begin learning about the many different ways you can create a custom gift plan.

Gwen Paxon, Director of Annual Fund & Planned Giving 908-234-1611, x205 or gpaxon@gsbschool.org

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FEATURES

FE AT U R ES

Behind Every Curtain Three years ago, Jill Harrison ’01 founded Directors Gathering, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit that connects theater directors with opportunities for professional development and ongoing education. “There are studios for actors, groups for playwrights and authors, residencies all over the world for artists, but there are few professional development opportunities for directors,” she explains. Prior to running Directors Gathering, Harrison worked for many years as a director. She understands the challenges that aspiring directors face, but she also understands the influence they can exert. “Directors are the visionaries; they are the ones in the best position to push theater forward,” she offers. As a result, Harrison sees Directors Gathering not simply as a way to help directors, but as way to serve theater itself by bringing a Theater director and founder of Directors Gathering, Jill Harrison ’01. Photo credit: Kim Wood greater range of perspectives and talents to the stage. director and producer for the performing arts. While Harrison’s work is concentrated on theater Working with younger students, Ross focuses professionals, Todd Ross ’94 loves working with on the broad strokes, the soft skills that include teamwork, finding confidence and learning how students who are just starting out on the stage. Ross teaches theater in the Middle School at Gill to take risks. “If they want to continue studying theater in Upper School and beyond, my classes St. Bernard’s, where he also serves as assistant will help them,” he says. “And if they never set foot on a stage again, my classes will still help them. They are learning to trust their instincts and to make bold choices. At their age, the theater can be a great vehicle for those lessons.” For Stephanie Amoroso ’11—actor, dancer and singer—the most important and empowering lessons from theater are the stories it tells. “A story can change people,” she says. “It can give them hope or a new perspective; it can help them work through something. When I was little, I loved dancing and being on stage. But it was really just my favorite way of telling stories.” Today, the stories Amoroso most likes to tell are those that are disquieting, but real. “Some things are hard to talk about because they are so personal,” she says. “Plays that can explore those issues and get those words and feelings out in the open—those are the most powerful for me.” Middle School theater teacher Todd Ross ’94.

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Just as Amoroso wants audience members to make connections between their own lives and the stories they see on stage, as an actor, she strives to bring a personal connection to the characters she plays. “The thing I know how to do best is to pull from my own experience and bring those Actor Stephanie Amoroso ’11. feelings to a character,” she says. She admits that some characters are easier to connect with than others, but sees that as the essential challenge of acting. “It takes more work sometimes, but there’s always a way into a character. You don’t connect with the experience per se, but with the feelings behind it. Making connections to characters who are drastically unlike me is one of the ways I continue to grow as a performer.” When he works with young actors, Ross highlights the relationship between performer and audience. “The most natural and vital connection is with the audience,” he says. “When I started acting, it was because I wanted the audience to feel the way I felt when I was a kid watching a Broadway show. It was that simple.” That feeling still guides his approach to theater. “I tell my students that without the audience, there is not much happening. It is just a group of people doing things on a stage. So, I have them ask ‘How can I let the audience in and get them to feel and understand everything they need to know for this scene?’” According

Todd Ross coaching MS theater students.

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to Ross, thinking about the audience actually makes students less self-conscious on stage. “It brings them out of themselves,” he says. “It can lead to the best, most authentic performances.” In her directing days, Harrison found that she elicited the best performances by encouraging the actors to approach each production as a learning experience. “I had a sense of how the performers could grow as artists through a production, the gaps that they could address and the strengths they could build on.” It is an approach she refers to as “inside-out,” and one she has been building on since her student days at Gill. She is quick to point out, however, that this is only one aspect of creating productions. “The work of a director is really two-fold,” she notes. “I would collaborate with actors in their pursuit of character (inside-out), but I also worked with designers to render visual storytelling (outside-in). In addition, a director must always be building a third-eye relationship with the audience.” By the time Harrison was a ninth-grader at Gill, her interest had grown from appearing in performances to understanding how performances came together. She would routinely ask Performing Arts Chair Paul Canada to explain his casting decisions. “I wasn’t challenging him,” she says smiling. “I just really wanted to understand the process, and he was so helpful and patient with me. Every time we talked about casting, I remember thinking that makes sense; it makes sense to me now.” According to Harrison, Canada taught her that “casting is a puzzle” and that “it simultaneously has everything to do with the director and almost nothing to do


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A Simpatico Theatre production of Dead Man’s Cell Phone directed by Harrison. Photo credit: Kyle Cassidy

with the director.” That idea resonated with her, and she began to understand that the input of a great director is largely invisible in the final production. While a great director brings to a production her unique interpretation of the work, she also finds a way to bring out the talent and chemistry of the cast, incorporating them into the overall artistic vision. It was an approach she would continue to fine tune in the theater program at Lehigh University and then in the MFA directing program at Temple University. Amoroso also credits Canada with helping her toward a career in theater, citing the performing arts program as her reason for coming to Gill as a ninth-grader. The year before, she had appeared in a production of Once on this Island, and realized she had a particular fondness for musical theater. She saw Gill as a way to hone her acting skills and grow as a performer. At GSB, she appeared as Bianca in Kiss Me Kate, Madame Pernelle in Tartuffe, Madame Armfeldt in A Little Night Music and Rapunzel in Into the Woods. From Gill, she went on to study musical theater at New York University’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts, where she graduated a semester early because of summer courses she had taken in film and television. Unlike Harrison and Amoroso, Ross didn’t appear in a production during his student days at Gill. He thought about it, but soon realized he couldn’t

make it work with his schedule. “It wouldn’t have been possible,” he said. “I was a three-season athlete. In fact, in the spring, I was captain of the baseball team and I was on the golf team too.” When Ross graduated from Gill, he enrolled at Bucknell to study engineering. After his sophomore year, he spent the summer on the Bucknell campus, where he was coaching a youth soccer league. He enrolled in Acting One that summer in the hope of boosting his GPA. Joining him were seven other students, football players who had returned to campus for preseason. The class reminded Ross of playing sports, and not simply because everyone in it was an athlete. He loved the live atmosphere, the teamwork, the risk taking and the physicality of being on the stage. When school began that fall, Ross changed majors, leaving civil engineering behind to pursue a degree in theater. From Bucknell, Ross entered the graduate theater program at Columbia University. In addition to honing his acting skills, he became an expert at stage combat, an area of specialization that appealed to the athlete in him and that he enjoyed teaching. After graduation, he married and settled in New York City where he found occasional work choreographing stage fights and teaching stage combat. Circumstances, however, called him back to New Jersey when his father’s health took a turn for the worse. Ross took over for his father, managing 5


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empower actors to making choices that empower other directors.” One of Harrison’s hopes with Directors Gathering is that it will eventually become a model for other organizations. “The day after we launched our website, I got calls from directors in Chicago, Boston, LA and Paris asking about Directors Gathering,” she says. “The truth is that we are evolving in exciting ways and as we continue to define our mission, we hope that we can serve as a new model for sustainable theatermaking. Eventually, we would love to grow Directors Gathering beyond Philadelphia, perhaps serving those aforementioned cities!”

Amoroso performing a Moulin-Rouge-inspired revue.

golf courses for more than a decade. He thought about making his way back to the theater, perhaps appearing in a local production, but he could never seem to make the timing work. Eventually, his father intervened. “He saw that the job was stressful for me—saw it more clearly than I did,” Ross said. “His health had recovered at that point, and I felt that I could pursue something else.” Revisiting the possibility of becoming a teacher, Ross started subbing at Gill and other schools in the area. When at GSB, he would also volunteer to help with theater productions and could often be found building sets after the school day had ended. A few days after Ross began substitute teaching, his wife noticed the change. “This is what you should be doing,” she said. Fate seemed to agree with her. Last spring, a position teaching drama opened up at Gill. More than 20 years after graduating, Ross finally found his way onto the GSB stage. “If they gave me the choice of any job at any school, this is what I would pick in a heartbeat,” he said. For Harrison, the past several years have been less about finding the ideal job and more about creating it. “In many ways, Directors Gathering is an extension of the work I have always done,” she says. “I have gone from making choices that 6

For Amoroso, her career is just beginning. Since earning her BFA, she has been living in New York City, auditioning and performing. Her most recent role was on New Year’s Eve, when she was the lead in a Moulin-Rouge-inspired musical revue at the McKittrick Hotel in Chelsea. “It was a fantastic night,” she says. “An absolute dream.” Currently, Amoroso is also working on a web series (title still to be released) in which she plays the main character’s best friend. “I want to get to the point where the work is coming in more consistently and I can support myself through performing.” At 24, Amoroso is open to a world of possibilities—stage, film, television. “It’s just a matter of the right person saying yes,” she says. “We believe different perspectives and approaches make great theater,” said Performing Arts Chair Paul Canada. “I’m proud that we have graduates who are actors, teachers, choreographers, musicians, directors and technicians. If every student left GSB thinking that they had to be ‘center stage’ in order to be successful, then we would have done a disservice to them and to our artistic and educational philosophies. Theater, music and dance—the performing arts—are ‘team sports.’ Great performances—and great artists— are fashioned as the result of the collaboration of talented, dedicated and creative individuals working together toward a common goal.”

We would love to hear your story if you’re involved in the performing arts. Contact Chanelle Walker in the GSB Alumni Office. (908) 234-1611, ext. 292 or cwalker@gsbschool.org.


FE AT U R ES

Warrior Dad Mike Burke ’92 By Jill Brown & Bill Thorndike Mike Burke ’92 has always been athletic, outdoorsy and not afraid to push his limits physically. It is a combination of attributes that serve him well in his current role, overseeing a herd of 13 elephants and coordinating the 15 animal trainers who care for them at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. “A routine day,” Burke notes, “easily entails 20,000 steps (roughly ten miles). Everything about the job is huge, and keeping up with the animals is a massively physical undertaking.” Burke knew early on that he wanted to work with animals. By the time he was an Upper School student at Gill, he was regularly volunteering at The Raptor Trust in Millington, New Jersey, and he had already set his college sights on San Diego State University in the hope of eventually working at the world-renowned San Diego Zoo. He credits his mother, Mary Burke, with inspiring his lifelong love of animals and his commitment to animal care. She was a Pre-K teacher at Gill’s Stronghold campus as well as a docent at

Mike, Kaaren, Mason and Wyatt.

the Turtleback Zoo in Essex County, New Jersey. According to Burke, she was a “total animal fanatic.” He recalls, “When I was in elementary school, she did a presentation for my class. She brought in a skunk, a boa constrictor, you name it. She was a rock star.” As hoped, Burke began working with the San Diego Zoo shortly after graduating from San Diego State, where he majored in biology and anthropology. Over the past two decades, he has cared for cheetahs and elephants, as well as a range of exotic birds, mammals and reptiles—both in the zoo’s main facility and at the 1,800-acre Safari Park. It was through his work with the cheetahs that he met his future wife in 1998. Kaaren Kolodziej was a fellow animal handler at Safari Park. For Burke, there was no looking back—not only was she beautiful and elegant, but her intensity and willingness to tackle challenges met—or arguably exceeded—his own. “She was a Navy brat who loved to work with cheetahs,” Burke says, “beautiful and athletic with military-like resolve. I rounded her edges and she sharpened mine.” The two married in 2002 and began building a life together that included

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working with exotic animals, stints of conservation work in Africa, and bringing sons Mason (11) and Wyatt (9) into the world. In 2010, Kaaren faced a challenge that no one could have anticipated. She was diagnosed with late-stage breast cancer. It was the beginning of a five-year battle, marked by small victories along the way, that ended with her passing in February of 2015. For a time, Burke notes, it looked as though she might recover. “She actually got through that first bout. Her hair grew back and she looked to be absolutely back to normal, beautiful and stunning as always.” But the disease spread to her bones and liver. Throughout her struggle, Burke watched, feeling helpless. Amid the sadness and frustration, however, he was continually amazed by her courage and unbreakable spirit. “She was a warrior,” he says simply. “I watched how elegantly and courageously she carried herself throughout. She lived as though her situation were just a bump in the road, and through six or seven surgeries and different forms of chemotherapy and radiation, she never changed her mindset or complained.” After Kaaren’s death, Burke faced his own battle: that of finding a way forward through crushing grief— not just for himself, but for the two boys. Although Kaaren was physically absent, and the three missed her constantly, it was the memory of her struggle that ultimately pointed the way forward. Her heroism galvanized Burke, bringing focus and direction to his frustration and sadness. “It wasn’t just the boys who needed momentum,” Burke offers. “I needed a way through—a way to look grief in the face and kick it in the teeth.” Burke remembers watching NBC’s American Ninja Warrior with his two sons one evening and seeing 8

contestant Grant McCartney, who had recently lost his mother and grandmother and was dedicating his American Ninja bid to them. It was a show that Burke had often watched with the two boys, but it was not until they saw McCartney that he realized the possibility of honoring Kaaren through the show. “The boys wanted me to do it—to honor their mom on the biggest and fattest platform that I could, shouting my wife’s name out loud from a very high mountain top.” What followed were months of raw determination in action. Training for the show gave Burke a concrete, if nearly impossible, goal. At 42, Burke was in the best physical shape of his life, but most of the show’s competitors are in their 20s or early 30s. “There are a couple of older guys who are absolute beasts,” Burke says, “but there aren’t many of us who can hang well enough to be included in the actual competition.” For a single father of two boys, with a 50-hour workweek and an hour commute to and from the zoo each day, spending hours at the gym was not an option. So, Burke began cramming intensive workouts into his daily routine. He would jam 600 pushups or more into a weekday—getting 100 or so out of the way at 4:45 a.m. At work, he powered through another 50 every time he took a break for water or came in or out of the office. He did pullups, in sets of 20 or 30, at every opportunity. He continues with the training regimen today. At his home, the door to the bedroom is equipped with a pullup bar. “I don’t cross the threshold—in or out— without tacking on 20 pullups,” he says. On the weekends, he and his two sons run wild over a veritable cross-training playground that Burke constructed on their five-acre ranch. Among other improvements, Burke built a moto-cross course on the property and outfitted its massive oak trees with


FE AT U R ES

climbing holds, ropes and trapezes. “We climb, jump, run and swing through the air like monkeys. The boys love it.” When not at home, the trio is most likely at the local trampoline park or the mini ninja training park or the town’s Parkour gym. The hard work paid off, and in 2015, Burke became one of a handful of hopefuls to actually make the grade for American Ninja Warrior. His story, in which he paid tribute to Kaaren’s indomitable warrior spirit, was featured prominently on the first episode of Season 8. Unfortunately, Burke fell and severely sprained his ankle five days before the qualifying round. Despite his doctor’s warnings, Burke ran the course anyway. “You don’t celebrate a warrior by ducking out because you hurt your foot,” he says. “The way I felt, I would have run even if my leg had been chopped off.” Although his warrior bid ended sooner than he would have liked, it was never about the show per se; it was about paying tribute to Kaaren and reintroducing the promise of exuberance and excitement into the lives of his sons. In those two endeavors, he will always be a champion. “I am a father first and foremost,” Burke offers. “The boys are my world. They have become stronger from seeing what I am doing.” He continues,

“We cruise around town and people recognize us from the show—they feel like rock stars. It’s hard and it’s grueling and exhausting, but it absolutely brought me and the boys closer. We’re pals; there’s just a tremendous amount of love.” Besides, even though he didn’t make it past the qualifying round, there is nothing stopping him from trying again. “I’ll go for it again, as long as I can stay healthy and the stars stay properly aligned because I’m not a spring chicken anymore,” Burke says. Burke’s appearance on American Ninja Warrior has also garnered him other opportunities. In December, he was filmed for an episode in a new TV mini-series, Permanent Vacation. The shows stars Pete Wentz, an American musician most frequently associated with the band Fall Out Boy, and jobs he would like to try. In December, Wentz shadowed Burke over the course of several days at the San Diego Zoo. In addition, this April, Burke will compete as a celebrity contestant in Reality Rally, an amazing-race style event that raises money for Michele’s Place, an organization that provides resources to those impacted by breast cancer. “It’s not only another way to celebrate Kaaren, it’s a way of giving back,” Burke explains. “Michele’s Place really helped Kaaren and me and the boys during her five years of treatment.” Although Burke has inspired his sons through his toughness, he has also never hidden his sadness from them. Reflecting on the past two years, he offers, “The boys understand that we honor mommy every day—sometimes through bravery and sometimes through tears.”

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COLLEGE CORNER

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Like Father, Like Daughter Trevena Bennett ’14 By Alice Roche Cody Even though Trevena Bennett’s ’14 father passed away three years ago—shortly before her graduation from Gill—she still starts every day by saying, “Good morning, Dad.” It’s a reminder of how she greeted him every morning at dawn, when the two early-risers would be the only family members up. Today, it’s how she honors Lorne Bennett, her “main man,” the one who coached football and basketball and mentored teens at the Boys & Girls Club of Union County. “My dad was my best friend—he’s the most caring person I’ve known to this day,” says Bennett. “I grew up at the Boys & Girls Club, was always around him and helping out. He helped the youth in our area get on the right path. There wasn’t a night the boys didn’t call him. He made sure the community was running well and he showed us how successful our town could be.” His example still shapes Bennett’s life, whether through her own volunteer work or as a junior at Bentley University or a guard on the Falcons basketball team. While basketball was a big part of the Bennetts’ family life (her brother Treyvon plays for Seton Hall Prep), academics were always the priority. “My dad loved that we were into sports, but he preached education,” she says. “He was always on my brother and me: basketball came second, academics first.” It was, in fact, basketball that first brought Bennett to Gill St. Bernard’s when she came to play for Mergin Sina, head coach for the girls’ basketball program at the time. Her father encouraged her to attend, citing the school’s academics. At first, the transition to Gill proved tough. On top of a three-hour daily commute from Union, New Jersey, Bennett was experiencing culture shock. “I cried every day the first two weeks because I

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Trevena Bennett ’14 and her father, Lorne Bennett.

was scared, uncomfortable and overwhelmed with the workload,” she says. “But my dad taught me to never give up and to push through any obstacles in my way.” Bennett stuck with it, and soon, new friends and teachers became like family. Despite suffering multiple knee injuries on the court, the two-year Knights cocaptain helped Gill capture three county championships. As a senior, she was named first-team All-Somerset County and was an All-Skyland Conference selection. Throughout it all, her biggest fans were her mom, Sharanda Bennett, and her dad. She recalls that whenever she got jammed up in a game, she would glance at him sitting quietly in the first row. “He knew how to calm me down,” she says. “He never said anything, just gave me a look.” When Bennett started at Bentley, she no longer had her father’s steady gaze to guide her, and her transition to college athletics proved difficult. “It was a huge adjustment,” she says. “I had to find time to fit in my studies and eat. I was, and still am, in the gym at all hours of the day.” One area the college athlete didn’t need to worry about was her studies. “Gill prepared me well academically and did a great job of


COLLEGE CORNER

providing a support system,” she says. “That’s why I chose Bentley—it reminded me of Gill.” A marketing major and sports management minor, Bennett aspires to own a multi-sports training facility one day. The facility would serve the community in several ways, from providing a venue for tournaments to offering a place for children to do homework and receive tutoring. “My vision is not typical—I want all kinds of sports taking place and kids running around,” she says. “I don’t just want to target athletes. People can come to learn about nutrition and healthy living and get in shape.” Not surprising, her goal echoes her dad’s lifelong ambition of opening his own sports complex. “It’s what motivates me to do this,” she says. “I’ll work hard for it, and I’ll make it happen.” As Bennett pursues coursework to support her dream, she is also continuing to honor her father through the L-Train Memorial Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that she started in 2014. Just four months after his death, the first three-on-three basketball tournament fundraiser was held in honor of her dad. To date, the nonprofit has raised $7,000 and recently awarded three college scholarships to student-athletes from northern New Jersey. Those students are currently attending Allegheny College, American University and Seton Hall University.

Trevena with her brother and mother.

The foundation is just one more way for Bennett to continue her father’s legacy. In all her endeavors, thoughts of him are never far from her mind. “Before games,” she says, “I pray to God, thanking Him for allowing me to play the sport I love, and I talk to my dad, telling him that I love him, I miss him, and that I’ll play smart and hard and leave everything I have on the court. Then I kiss my finger and point to the sky.”

L-Train Memorial Foundation Annual Three-on-Three Basketball Tournament, August 2016.


ALUMNI NEWS

T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

Alumni Soccer Game Named for Lee Kasman ’76, P ’16 On Friday, November 25, the alumni soccer game was held, with over 30 graduates returning to campus for the Thanksgiving-weekend event. This year, the game—the annual friendly competition among GSB graduates—was formally named in honor of Lee Kasman ’76, P ’16. Lee Kasman passed away suddenly in February of 2015. His family wanted Lee to be remembered in some way on the GSB campus. It was a place he loved, and he was thrilled to see his son Charlie Kasman ’16 following in his footsteps on the soccer field. Last year, coach Tony Bednarsky had the idea of establishing the Thanksgiving gathering as the Lee Kasman ’76 Alumni Soccer Game. At that time, plans began to take shape for the formal dedication, which was to follow the opening of the new Field House in September. In addition to the naming, Tim Terry ’76 offered to honor his friend by giving a tree to be planted in Lee’s memory in view of the field and by crafting a bench to sit beneath the tree. “The tree and bench set on the hill above the field is a wonderful way to honor Lee,” said Head of School Sid Rowell, who spoke briefly at the dedication. “He loved the school and he loved the game.” In addition to Rowell, Terry shared his memories of Lee and his hope that all alumni could think back to a special relationship that began on the Gill campus. Susan Kasman spoke on behalf of her children and other family members who attended. Bednarsky presented Charlie and Susan a game ball from the State Championship game earlier in the month that was signed by all the participants.

L to r: Elise Kasman (niece), Hilary Kasman (niece), Daniel Kasman (nephew), Rose Kasman (daughter) and her fiancé Dan Marshall, Susan Kasman, Charles Kasman ’16 (son), Sid Rowell, Tony Bednarsky, Tim Terry ’76, Kathryn Kasman (daughter) and her fiancé Pavel Sidorenko, Joshua Kasman (son).

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ALUMNI NEWS

Gill St. Bernard’s School Re-Establishing the Athletic Hall of Fame The Athletic Hall of Fame honors those who elevate the athletics program at Gill St. Bernard’s. Inclusion can be conferred on outstanding student-athletes, coaches, teams, members of the athletic staff and others who have demonstrated significant athletic success or otherwise brought credit to the school’s athletics program through sportsmanship, support, school spirit and/or consistently setting a positive example.

Eligibility

A student who has graduated from or otherwise left the school in good standing at least ten years prior to being nominated is eligible. A coach, assistant coach or member of the athletics staff who has retired or otherwise left the school in good standing at least three years prior to being nominated is eligible. Special contributors to the athletics program (parents, friends, student-athletes who did not earn varsity letters, etc.) may be considered three years after their direct involvement with the athletics program ends and/or no longer represents a conflict of interest. Posthumous candidates are eligible for nomination.

Nominations

Individuals or teams can be nominated by anyone. If you are interested in nominating a candidate for the Athletic Hall of Fame, please complete the online form www.gsbschool.org/ ahof or download the form and mail it to the school address with attention made to Alumni Office/Athletic Hall of Fame. Minimum requested fields, as indicated on nomination forms, will be required to activate a nominee. Nominees without the minimum fields completed will not be considered. All nominees should be positive examples of character and integrity in addition to having a sustained interest in the school. Nominees will remain active for five years after submission, at which point they will be removed from consideration. Individuals may be nominated more than once. If you have any questions, please contact Chanelle Walker at cwalker@gsbschool.org or 908-234-1611, ext. 292.

GSB Alumni Weekend May 5-6, 2017

The Gill School and St. Bernard’s School Reunion

Special Reunion for Classes Ending in “7” and “2” Honoring Retiring Faculty

Honoring the 50th Reunion Classes

June 3-4, 2017 www.gsbschool.org/gillsbs-alumni-reunion

www.gsbschool.org/gsbreunion 13


ALUMNI NEWS

Recent Alumni Gatherings

GSB Alumni gathered in New York City at Stitch Bar and Lounge on December 8th. (Back l. to r.) Matthews Harris ’11, Hilary Richards, Ray Conger ’03, Michael Harris ’06, Terrance Timothy ’07, Chanelle Walker, (front l. to r.) Roman Jablonskyj ’09, Juan-Bautista Dominguez ’09.

Lee Kasman ’76, P ’16 Alumni Soccer Game participants, Friday, November 25, 2016 (see story on page 12)

SAVE THE DATE JUNE 17, 2017 San Francisco Event 14


GSB NEWS

T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

Homecoming & Family Day On Saturday, September 24, more than 1,000 people turned out for the annual Homecoming & Family Day celebration at Gill St. Bernard’s. Amid perfect weather, Knights’ fans had much to celebrate as the teams posted wins in every competition at every level: varsity, junior varsity and Middle School. Other family-friendly activities included the pumpkin patch, the dunk tank and the “wheel of teachers.” This year’s Homecoming & Family Day also celebrated the official dedication of the new Field House (see story on page 28).

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T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

Performing A The New Theater/Performing Arts Center is the centerpiece

The building will feature a 450-seat house, sce 40’x37’x18’ stage, orchestra pit, la

The time has come... Constru

The Performing Arts Center will be approximately 23,330 square feet and will be one of the first buildings visitors see when they arrive on campus.

Fundraising continues fo Contact Jim Diverio at jdiverio@gsbs for more in

Delivering th The Campaign for Gill St 16


GSB NEWS

g Arts Center

rpiece of Gill St. Bernard’s current comprehensive campaign.

house, scene shop, costume shop, dressing rooms, stra pit, large lobby/gallery, and more.

Construction to begin in March.

The house will be equipped with state-of-the-art acoustics and lighting systems.

ELEV 2 SCENE SHOP (OPEN TO BELOW)

Department Legend CIRCULATION HOUSE LOBBY

VESTIBULE

RESTROOMS

BALCONY

BOX OFFICE / CONCESSION

STAGE SUPPORT THEATER SUPPORT

LIGHT & SOUND LOCK

STAGE HOUSE CONTROL ROOM

ntinues for this signature building. erio@gsbschool.org or call 973-234-1611, x210 or more information.

ng the Future Gill St. Bernard’s School

CORRIDOR

MECHANICAL EQUIPMENT

LOBBY

LIGHT & SOUND LOCK

CLOSET

OFFICE BALCONY

STAIR 1 CORRIDOR

STAIR 2

FAMILY TOILET

JANITOR

COAT CHECK / STORAGE

ELEV 1

VESTIBULE

PERFORMING ARTS CENTER

LOBBY LEVEL PLAN

GILL ST. BERNARD'S

SCALE:

01.16.2017

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1/8" = 1'-0"


T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

The Game’s Afoot In November, the GSB Players staged three sold-out performances of The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holidays. Directed and costumed by Performing Arts Chair Paul Canada and produced by drama teacher Todd Ross ’94, the show featured stunning period sets and costumes. A cast of veteran GSB Players and newcomers to the campus stage created a fun blend of comedy and intrigue for the audience each night. The story centers around a fictionalized version of William Gillette—an American actor best known for his stage portrayals of Sherlock Holmes. When Gillette invites fellow cast members to his Connecticut mansion for the winter holidays, one of his house guests is murdered. Before the killer can strike again, Gillette must once again assume the role of Holmes to solve the crime.

Left to right (standing) Brooke Stephenson ’18, Andrew Lutz ’20, Amity Matthews ’18, Jack Herrlin ’18, Jessica Abowitz ’18, (seated) Kelly Schiesswohl ’17, AJ Witte ’19 and Kaitlyn Sleyster ’17.

Lower School Tinker Space Lower School children have been enjoying their new tinker space, which was constructed over the summer thanks to a grant from the Gill St. Bernard’s Parents’ Association. A tinker space, much like a makerspace or innovation lab, allows students to use different materials to construct, design and explore. It also fosters collaboration, creativity and problem solving— encouraging students to engage in an ongoing process of trial and error, design and redesign. Lower School Director Honor Taft had this to say about the new tinker space, “It is incredibly exciting! Lower 18

School teachers have embraced this space and are using it in myriad ways to engage their students in collaborative problem-solving activities. Some of these directly connect to the curriculum, such as second graders building their own ‘mayflower ships’ then testing to see if the ships can actually hold 102 passengers. In other cases, students are exploring the basics of coding, which connects with our Kindergarten program, where students program Bee-Bots.” The tinker space offers an array of materials and technology, including cutting and gluing tools, building blocks, doodle pens, Legos, iPads and 3D printers.


GSB NEWS

Farm Educator for Home Winds Over the summer, Steven Rabel joined Gill St. Bernard’s as the school’s Farm Educator, a new position that was created in response to the expanding role of Home Winds. The property, which the school acquired in the spring of 2015 through a partial gift from Betsy Michel, includes a working farm that is home to cattle, chickens, donkeys, ducks, goats and rabbits, with lambs scheduled to arrive this spring. In addition, there is an apiary on site, which yields roughly 130 pounds of prized Linden-flower honey each year, a Class-I trout stream and a pond, frequented by the Upper School Fishing Club. In coordination with the GSB Community Garden and the campus greenhouses, Home Winds offers signature academic opportunities as well as a model of sustainability.

Rabel, who holds a degree in animal science from Rutgers University, is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of the farm—everything from collecting eggs to determining which areas are best suited to hay production—and working with faculty members to incorporate the resources of Home Winds into the school’s academic curriculum. This fall, he collaborated with Upper School Director Sue Petrone and Science Department Chair John Taeschler, who inaugurated an animal science elective in the Upper School. “The first day of class, we needed to move the chicken flocks, so I showed everyone how to pick up the chickens,” he said. “It sounds like a small thing, but some of the students had never seen live chickens before.” According to Rabel, a few of the students are considering potential careers in animal science, such as veterinary medicine. “They see the class as a way to learn more about a field they would not normally have the chance to explore,” he said. In the Middle School, Rabel recently worked with the sixth-grade to design a water filtration system for the goats. For the Lower School students, Rabel is most often asked to showcase the animals; a recent visit to the Primary classroom with baby ducklings was a big success. 19


T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

GSB Hosts TEDx Conference In November, Gill St. Bernard’s hosted a TEDx conference for the first time in the school’s history. Mike Chimes, director of academic technology, coordinated the event in collaboration with Blair Academy. Last year, the two schools also partnered on a TEDx conference, which was held on the Blair campus. The TEDx program is an offshoot of TED, a nonprofit “devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks.” Since its first conference in 1984, TED has continued to gain momentum, and the original focus of Technology, Entertainment and Design has expanded to include talks in almost any field. By way of example, mostwatched TED talks from 2016 include “What the Discovery of Gravitational Waves Means,” “A Visual History of Social Dance in 25 Moves” and “Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator.” While TED sponsors at least two conferences each year, it also allows independent organizers to create their own conferences through TEDx. These conferences mirror the TED format but they are hosted by communities, libraries, organizations

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or even individuals. Before hosting its conference this November, Gill acquired a license from TEDx and agreed to adhere to the organization’s policies, which stipulate the maximum size of the conference, branding requirements and other parameters. There were eight speakers at the conference, four representing each school. Student speakers for GSB were Alex Schachne ’18 (Unlocking Motivation, Applying 10,000 Hours: A Rational Approach to Success), Patrick Reilly ’17 (Using Math to Your Advantage) and Helena Digney ’18 (What’s the Fascination with Superheroes?). In addition to the student speakers, Chimes asked alumnus Adam Aresty ’03 to speak at the conference. Little did he know that Aresty had always admired TED talks and welcomed the opportunity to give one of his own. Aresty presented Transitions in Art and Life, in which he highlighted transition as an element common among all art forms. To see any of the TEDx presentations, visit tedxtalks.ted.com and search by presenter name.


GSB NEWS

Visiting Authors In December, former faculty member Patricia Lee Gauch returned to Gill St. Bernard’s for a weeklong stint as author-in-residence. During her stay, Gauch held several workshops with students in the Advanced Creative Writing Seminar, an elective offered each year by English Department Chair Andy Lutz. “My obsession is words,” she told the students, “and getting you to a place where there is almost no separation between your words and experience itself.” Gauch also visited Middle School classrooms and met with the English and language arts faculty to share techniques for helping students tap into their own creativity. Gauch, now 82, is best known as the former editor in chief of Philomel Books (a children’s literature imprint of Penguin Books). She is also an author in her own right, having published 39 titles for young readers, and by her own admission, she is still, and has always been, a teacher. Working with authors, Gauch gives generously of herself and her attention. She has an uncanny ability to listen, hearing not simply the words on the page, but their still-to-becreated potential as well. Throughout the years, she has given dozen of authors their start, both as an editor and through the workshops she continues to lead. Among the authors Gauch helped launch is Margie Palatini P ’06, who has penned dozens of titles for children and young adults. During a recent visit to campus, Palatini shared her beginnings as an author and how Gauch’s influence led her to Gill when it came time for her son Jamie ’06 to begin school. “There were about a dozen women—all of them unpublished— who signed up for Pat Gauch’s workshop,” she recalls. “Those same women are now the authors of more than 400 titles collectively.” Continuing the tradition of creative writing at GSB, Palatini spent a day in November with Lower School children, reading to them, answering questions about the writing life and hosting a book signing. Many of the children in Lower and Middle School purchased copies

of her latest title, Isabella for Real, which was released in October. Gauch taught at Gill St. Bernard’s from 1974-1984. Since that time, she has continued to be a valuable resource to the GSB community through her workshops with students and teachers. The school’s creative writing award, given each year to a senior upon graduation, is named in her honor. You can help support the Patricia Lee Gauch endowed prize by making a gift online or by calling Jim Diverio, Director of Development at 908234-1611, ext. 210.

Left to right: Lower School Librarian Hope Preston, Margie Palatini P ’06, and Megan Massina P ’23, ’25, ’29, co-chair of the book fair.

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ATHLETICS

T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

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Storybook Season for Boys’ Soccer Three games into the 2016 season, varsity boys’ soccer defeated Somerville High to bring head coach Tony Bednarsky a career milestone of 400 wins with Gill St. Bernard’s. Amid the celebrations, however, coach and players never lost sight of their primary goal for the season: earn a state championship title. As though to dispel any doubts about their commitment, the squad followed up win 400 with four successive shutout victories, bringing them through September with only a single loss. In early October, the Knights seemed unstoppable, but a combination of illness, injury and tough tournament play brought three losses and cost the team the Somerset County and Prep B titles. The team entered November healthy, with a full complement of players and renewed determination to claim the state title. Throughout tournament play, the Knights were dominant. On November 4, the team defeated the Ranney School 7-0 in the quarterfinal matchup. The semifinal against Gloucester Catholic on November 7

brought a 3-0 win for the squad in its last home game of the season. On November 10, the Knights bested Wildwood Catholic 4-0 to earn the South Jersey, Non-Public B title, and on November 13, a 2-0 win over Hudson Catholic gave the Knights their fourth straight shutout win and the 2016 NJSIAA Non-Public B state championship. For the team’s seniors—all of whom had been freshmen starters on the 2013 state championship team—reclaiming the title in their final season with Gill was especially rewarding. For coach Bednarsky,


AT H L E T I C S

this season also marked the last time that one of his children would play soccer for Gill. The youngest of four, Steven ’17, acquitted himself brilliantly at midfield throughout the season, earning a host of post-season honors, including first team all-state and

Courier News and Skyland Conference player of the year. After the championship win, he offered, “It feels great to end my Gill soccer career surrounded by my senior teammates and as state champs. It was a special win for the team and for my dad.”

Tony Bednarsky has been head coach of varsity boys’ soccer at Gill for 28 years. He is a member of the NJSIAA Coaches Hall of Fame and was named New Jersey State Coach of the Year in 2009. Under his leadership, the boys’ soccer program has garnered three state titles, five sectional championships, eight Prep B championships and 16 conference championships… and counting.

CROSS COUNTRY In cross country, the girls’ team claimed the Skyland Conference Mountain Division for the second consecutive year. The boys’ squad finished second in the Mountain Division, with senior Matt Petit and junior Bobby D’Angelo qualifying for the Meet of Champions. With several underclassmen on the roster for both the girls’ and boys’ squads, the coaches anticipate a strong team next season.

GIRLS’ TENNIS Girls’ tennis (14-3) finished in a threeway tie for the Prep B championship and in a two-way tie for the Skyland Conference championship. The duo of Martine DiDomenico ’17 and Andrea Aloise ’19 had a fantastic season at first doubles, dropping only one match and claiming the Prep B title for first doubles.

GIRLS’ SOCCER Girls’ soccer ended the season with a 13-7-2 record, a significant improvement over last year’s record of 9-9-1. Highlights from the season included an 8-0 win over Bound Brook on opening day, a 1-0 win over conference-rival Rutgers Prep in October and a 1-0 win over Timothy Christian in the quarterfinal round of the NJSIAA South Jersey, Non-Public B tournament. A strong core of talented freshmen and sophomores bodes well for the future of the program. 23


T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

PATRONS

Newest Members of the Board

JOHN FRANTZ P ’22, ’24, ’27 The Board of Trustees welcomes John Frantz P ’22, ’24, ’27. Frantz is Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Product and New Business Innovation at Verizon. In that role, he leads the legal team that supports Verizon’s business goals, develops new products and manages the company’s newly-acquired businesses. His team is also responsible for securing Verizon’s patents and negotiating agreements for video and multimedia content. He has been the chair of Verizon’s pro bono program since its creation in 2009. This program offers volunteer opportunities for lawyers and legal professionals across the country to address unmet needs in their communities. Frantz is a member of the Board of Advisors of NJ LEEP, an organization that offers a law-based college preparatory program to Newark-area high school students. Prior to working at Verizon, Frantz was an associate at the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis in Washington, DC. He is a graduate of Boston College and Harvard Law School. Frantz and his wife, Stephanie Pendell, have three children, Madison ’22, Peter ’24, and Sophia ’27, and reside in Mendham. JEFF LAGER ’86 Jeff Lager ’86 joined the Board of Trustees in 2016. He is an analyst and portfolio manager with the Capital Group Companies. Before joining Capital, Lager was a manager of investment analysis at Medical Portfolio Management and an associate at the Boston Consulting Group. He holds an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he was an Arjay Miller Scholar, as well as a master’s degree in Sociology/Organizational Behavior and a bachelor’s degree with distinction in Decision Analysis from Stanford University. Lager lives in Hillsborough, California, with his wife, Erin, and three sons. He serves on several nonprofit boards in the San Francisco Bay area.

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MARK MAZZATTA P ’21, ’23 Mark Mazzatta P ’21, ’23 joined the Board of Trustees in 2016. He is a partner of Four M Group, LLC and Aries Venture Partners, where he provides strategic consulting, advisory services, and capital to startup companies. Previously, Mazzatta was a senior partner at Accenture where he specialized in global capital markets, focusing on institutional broker dealers, investment banks, private banks and investment managers. Since joining the GSB community in 2013, Mazzatta has led and participated in many school activities, such as chairing the Annual Fund and serving as a non-trustee member on the Capital Campaign Committee. Mazzatta also actively participates in the school’s Parent Admission Network and various activities of the Parents’ Association. Mazzatta is involved in multiple charitable organizations supporting the arts, youth athletics and wildlife. Mazzatta received a BS in Biochemical Engineering from Rutgers College of Engineering and a BA in Economics from Rutgers College. Mazzatta, his wife, Michele, and sons, Mark ’21 and Matthew ’23, reside in Tewksbury.


PAT R O N S

A Personal Philanthropy: John & Valerie Raymonds P ’21 For more than a decade, John and Valerie Raymonds have been making significant contributions to schools or other nonprofit organizations that work to improve the lives of children and young adults. The first to benefit from their generosity was the Wardlaw Hartridge School, where their older son Joseph graduated, and their younger son Matt ’21 attended until coming to Gill St. Bernard’s in the third grade. At Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the family established the Raymonds (1986) Scholarship Fund, which benefits undergraduate students. The Raymonds are also major donors to the XPRIZE Foundation and specifically to the Global Learning XPRIZE (a competition that challenges teams to create open-source educational software for children in developing countries), to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and to Rupert’s Kids, an Indiana-based organization that helps young people recognize their value to society. The Raymonds note that the slogan of Rupert’s Kids—Life is Good. Be you… Give Back!—perfectly captures their commitment to philanthropy. In addition to wanting to give back, the Raymonds say they approach philanthropy the way they approach investing: “It is important to diversify because there is more than one way to make a difference, but we also limit our focus to organizations that we understand well. Investments can be measured in the growth of capital and, for us, our giving can be measured in the future success of the institutions or the individuals they have benefited.”

as simple as being a part of the community. To enhance an already great experience—for our son and for future students—that is something we want to be a part of.” When making a gift to Gill or other organizations, the Raymonds feel privileged to be able to contribute to something they care about. John says, “My grandparents and Valerie’s came from the old world and traveled to this country with little or nothing. Our parents were the first generation born on US soil. There was little room for charitable giving. With our generation, we were fortunate enough to take the seeds planted by our parents and grandparents and help them grow. Now that there is room for giving, we have made it a priority.” When it comes to philanthropy, the Raymonds inspire by example—through generosity and a willingness to step up and contribute without being asked. Their advice to others considering a gift to Gill, “If you find as we have that you benefit from something GSB has given to you, find a way to give back and hopefully make the experience even better for others.”

Among the organizations to benefit from the Raymonds’ generosity is Gill St. Bernard’s. “We didn’t need to be asked to make a gift to Gill.” John offers. “For us, it was

Honor a Faculty/Staff Member With Your Annual Fund Gift Today! Go online to make your gift at

www.gsbschool.org/page/ Annual-Fund or mail your check payable to GSB Development Office P.O. Box 604/St. Bernard’s Road Gladstone, NJ 07934 Questions? Contact Gwen Paxon at 908-234-1611, ext. 205 25


T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

A Successful Day GivingTuesday helped the school to reach an unprecedented participation rate for the 2016 fiscal year. On November 29, 2016, the alumni office participated in GivingTuesday for the second time.

Become Part of the Alumni Walkway

Throughout the month of November, the alumni Facebook page and website shared profiles of seniors telling us about their experience at Gill St. Bernard’s. Mary Fran Howard said, “People really do go above and beyond to make things happen for others here, and I know I will miss that next year.” On GivingTuesday, the seniors challenged alumni to make donations, with a goal of bringing in at least 50 alumni contributions. The seniors met that goal, with 80 alumni coming forward to make donations on GivingTuesday. Among the alumni contributors, some shared messages for the GSB community:

“GSB holds a special place in my heart. I can’t imagine having been anywhere else for K-12!” Meaghan Moriarty ’11 “I have loved this school from the first day I arrived.” Robert “Robby” Robinson, SBS ’36 “Love this school, great memories and long lasting relationships came out of going to GSB.” Missy Keyser ’79 26

Purchase your brick at

www.gsbschool.org/bricks and become a part of GSB history today.


PAT R O N S

2016 GSB Classic More than 60 golfers braved early morning rain at Hamilton Farm Golf Club on September 19 to take part in the 12th Annual GSB Golf Classic. By late morning, dryer weather prevailed, allowing the golfers time for 27 holes of play—nine on the championship, par-three Hickory course and 18 on the traditional Highlands course. Each of the 13 par-three holes offered the chance to win Tournament winners. a new car with a hole-inone, courtesy of Tom Maoli’s P ’16, ’20 family of dealerships. No one took home a new car this year, but GSB raffle winners included Joe Donegan, who won two seats for Hamilton on Broadway and Marcella Criscola P ’25, ’26’, ’29, who won luxury box

seats to see Billy Joel in Madison Square Garden. Kevin Carey’s P ’23 foursome took first place at the tournament. The Golf Classic raised more than $100,000, all of which will go toward need-based financial aid, bringing the total raised for the endowment over the past 12 years to nearly $1.2 million. Special thanks to our committee chairs Kevin Giordano P ’14, ’19 and Kevin Carey P ’23, along with former (and now honorary) chair Greg Niccolai P ’16. The 2017 GSB Golf Classic will be held on September 18. Watch for details this spring or visit gsbschool.org/page/Support/GSB-Golf-Classic.

Be an Original: Your Style, Your Story In November, 270 guests turned out for the annual GSB Parents’ Association Fashion Event. A day of fashion, finds, friends and fun, the sold-out event raised $50,000 to benefit student programs at the school. Special thanks to event chair Marcella Criscola P ’25, ’26, ’29 (center of photo) and her committee on putting together a fabulous Fashion Event.

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T H E M AGA Z I N E O F G I L L S T. B ER N A R D’S S C H O O L

New Field House Opens During Homecoming & Family Day on September 24, the new Field House—completed in early August— was officially dedicated. The ceremony recognized donors and those who contributed to the design and construction of the building. The dedication took place at the building’s front entrance, with David and Jill Farris GP ’11, ’13, ’15, ’17, ’17, ’20 on hand to cut the ribbon, marking the official opening of the facility. The basketball court in the Field House was named the Farris Forum to honor the family’s leadership role in support of the Field House campaign. David Farris has been a member of Gill’s Board of Visitors since 2012. He and his wife have two daughters and seven grandchildren, six of whom currently attend or have graduated from Gill St. Bernard’s. The 14,400-square-foot Field House comprises a multi-sport practice and game court as well as a fitness center and locker rooms. It will serve as the principle gymnasium for the school’s Lower and Middle School students. Reflecting on the ceremony, Head of School Sid Rowell offered, “We are thrilled to open this wonderful new facility on our campus. Dave and Jill’s faith in our school and their generosity are remarkable.” Rowell also thanked others who were essential to the project, including the architects, representatives from the construction company and the many Gill families who came forward to support the Field House campaign. The facility replaces the “old gym,” which will be razed during spring break. The site of the old gym will then serve as the location for a new performing arts and community center. Construction for the 450-seat performing arts facility will begin after demolition this March. The building will house the school’s awardwinning theater and music programs, as well as concerts, assemblies, lectures and other events. See preview, pages 16-17.

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PAT R O N S

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Student Work from Winter Art Show

photograph by Harsabreen Chadha ’18

photograph by Katherine Duggan ’17

painting by Julia Hersh ’20

woodworking by Clay Goulburn ’19

photograph by Paul Mulcahy ’19

painting by Nina Bhatia ’17


Gill St. Bernard’s School P.O. Box 604 St. Bernard’s Road Gladstone, NJ 07934-0604 908-234-1611 gsbschool.org facebook.com/gsbschool facebook.com/gsbschoolalumni

New Field House

Standard Pre-sort US Postage Paid Princeton NJ Permit 783

Future Performing Arts Center

GSB Alumni Magazine: Winter 2017