Holderness School Today: Fall 2018

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r Commencement 2018


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f e at u r e s


An Opportunity for Self-Discovery and Reflection The college process can be daunting and fraught with unrealistic expectations, fear of the unknown, and disappointing results. At Holderness, Director of College Counseling Bruce Barton coaches students in a different direction—towards self-reflection, personal growth, and proactive engagement. BY EMILY MAGNUS ’88

The Eagle Has Landed


Leaving the comfort and familiarity of Holderness isn’t easy, but these seven alumni have risen to the challenge and, in fact, are thriving. Their stories, from the first five years after Holderness, are varied but all possess a common thread. By rick carey

Catching Up with Bob Low


It’s not about championships or college placement, he says. It’s about relationships. After 33 years as an educator, Bob works hard to make sure the kids with whom he works know he cares. By suzanne dewey

d e pa r t m e n t s Board of Trustees Sandeep Alva Neale Attenborough Katie Crumbo Carolyn Cullen ’87 Bob Cunha, Treasurer Chris Davenport ’88 Andrew Davis Paul John Ferri, Jr. Tracy McCoy Gillette ’89 Robert Hall, Chair Susie Hayes The Right Rev. Robert Hirschfeld, President Burgwell Howard ’82 Chris Keating ’81, Secretary Peter Kimball ’72 Robert Kinsley ’88 Alex MacCormick ’88, Alumni Association President Sue MacGrath Kevin Mattingly R. Phillip Peck Thomas Phillips ’75 Nell Reynolds Andrew Sawyer ’79 Harry Sheehy Gary Spiess Matthew Storey Sander van Otterloo ’94 Richard Vieira

3 From the Editor 4 From the Schoolhouse 6 Commencement 28 Around the Quad 37 Sports 39 Update: Faculty and Staff 45 Update: Trustees 50 Alumni Events 52 Alumni in the News 57 Class Notes 79 At This Point in Time

Headmaster emeritus The Rev. Brinton W. Woodward, Jr. Honorary trustees Warren C. Cook Jim Hamblin ’77 Piper Orton ’74 W. Dexter Paine III ’79 Will Prickett ’81

Holderness School Today is published two times a year. Please send notice of address changes to the Advancement Office, PO Box 1879, Plymouth, NH 03264, or advancement@holderness.org. © 2018 Holderness School

contriButers: Sarah Barton, Peter Durnan, Nigel Furlonge, Liesl Magnus design and production: Clay Dingman, Barking Cat Productions Communications Design photography: Emily Magnus, Ken Hamilton

editor: Emily Magnus ’88 editors emeriti: Jim Brewer, Rick Carey assistant editors: Patrick Buckley, Suzanne Dewey, Neal Frei ’03, Andrew Herring, Stacy Lopes, Kim Merrow, Darren Moore ’99, Phil Peck, Mark Sturgeon, and Clay Dingman

Holderness School Today is printed by R. C. Brayshaw and Company on sustainably produced, chain-of-custody stock certified to Forest Stewardship Council® (fsc®) standards.

from the editor

Past and Present After a hiking adventure with my daughter this summer, we stopped into the Mountain Wanderer in Lincoln, NH. It’s a local icon that specializes in maps of and books about the White Mountains—a treasure for anyone who is passionate about spending time in the New Hampshire wilderness. e store also carries a selection of vintage books, and amongst them, my daughter found a copy of the history of Holderness, written by my great-grandfather, George Hodges. George Hodges was the dean of the Episcopal School at Harvard and wrote many books, mostly on religious topics. He was also a speaker at Holderness School’s Commencement in 1904. In that bookstore, holding the book that my great-grandfather had written, I felt a sudden connection with the past—history and the present intertwining in a chance encounter. A story by Erica Ashby ’18 begins in a similar manner. During a conversation with a faculty member, she learned of secret symbols and surreptitious clubs from almost every decade of Holderness history. Her curiosity led to conversations with alumni and to the storied history of the Holderness forts—of friendships, stolen lumber, smoky campfires, and stealth meetings in remote corners of campus. For almost a year, Erica used her free time to interview alumni, visit the Holderness Archives, and piece together the patchwork stories she received. Ultimately, Erica, with the help of Holderness Archivist Joanne Wernig, compiled all she learned into a book—Forts: e Tradition of Holderness School Forts. It wasn’t for a class; it wasn’t for credit. It was simply because she cared about the stories so much that she wanted to share them. She also secured the help of her classmate Song Tang ’18, who provided the illustrations. I marvel at their dedication and find truth in the last sentence of Erica’s book: “Lastly, I would like to thank Holderness for providing a plethora of experiences and friendships. is book is a clear representation of Holderness School’s ability to develop creative and curious

A photo from the Holderness Archives that was included in a new book by Erica Ashby ’18, Forts. Arpinum II was founded by the Fuji Crusaders from the Class of 1978.

students.” I would add that Holderness may have opened doors, but it was Erica who stepped through and embraced the experience. e story, however, doesn’t end there. Even after Erica’s book was complete, stories continued to surface. In particular, Head of School Phil Peck had a story to contribute. When Phil was still a history teacher and lived in one of the dorms just beyond the Bartsch parking lot, he learned of another fort. In 1989, when Erich Kaiter ’90 and Tyler Hamilton ’90 were in eleventh grade, they put to use some rotting lumber they found behind the Nordic hut and built a fort somewhere between the Upper Fields and the Bean House. Phil says he didn’t discover the fort until many years later when the construction of the Hendel Loop began on the ski trails. Erich and Tyler were my schoolmates, students who walked the paths of Holderness School at the same moment in time that I did. It wasn’t hard to locate Erich’s email and renew conversations that had ended over thirty years ago.

Within hours of my original email, Erich responded. “We built the fort about 500 +/yards up the road from Hinman Dorm,” recalls Erich. “It was off the ground and was box shaped and had a rubber membrane roof, chairs, sofa, and a bed.” Our conversation continued, catching up on family news and where our lives had taken us over the past thirty years. To live and work in a place filled with rich history that is well-documented is fascinating and often leads me to unexpected places. Perhaps I am just getting old, but the past and the present and the future don’t seem quite as defined as they used to be. • Editor’s NotE: If you are interested in receiving a copy of Erica’s book, please send me an email, and I will make sure one is delivered to you! Emily Adriance Magnus ’88 Editor, Holderness School Today emagnus@holderness.org


from the schoolhouse

Staying Connected with Our Roots

The view from campus of Stinson Mountain and the Baker River Valley. Plans for the new academic building include this view as a focal point, bringing the surrounding environment into the living space.

In 1878, Bishop Niles stood on the bank, looking out over Plymouth, the Baker River Valley, and the local mountains—including Stinson, Tenney, and Plymouth. Of the several possible locations, he decided this was where he wanted to found a modest Episcopal school, built in this humble but beautiful location, with a motto “For God and Humankind.” For 140 years, Bishop Niles’ decision and vision have served to keep us grounded. at grounding and vision have been a constant touchstone as we have been designing and now fundraising to support a plan that will impact virtually every teaching and learning space on campus. We are planning a new academic building that will support the sciences

and mathematics, and we want to renovate other learning spaces on campus as well. As our math and science programs have evolved, we have seen the limitations of our current facility, Hagerman, for the last dozen years or so. In fact, “explore building a new science building” was part of our 2005 strategic plan; we even had an initial conceptual plan drawn in 2007. at said, community and school life took priority as we renovated Weld and added the two new dorms, allowing more faculty to live on campus and creating an 8:1 student to faculty ratio in the dorms. While those plans have served our community well, by 2012, we realized the time had come to explore the design of a new space to support all of our teaching and learning.


Enter Rob Kinsley ’88, the chair of our board’s Building and Grounds Committee. e design process he facilitated will inform every teaching and learning space on campus. He and his team did Not ask the science department how many labs they needed (at least not at first). Instead, Rob asked, where do you see science education for Holderness in 15–20 years? What are the national trends in science education and curriculum? How does the research in cognitive science inform how we should be teaching? What are the unique opportunities for Holderness in this field? Needless to say, these were robust questions and thus began over a year of research, conversations, and finally visits to new higher education and independent school science facilities. In the

from the schoolhouse

Architect’s rendering of an open space within the new academic building

end, the science department decided the aspirational guidelines for these new spaces needed to be collaboration, innovation, and flexibility. Over the last year, Director of Teaching and Learning Nicole Furlonge has worked with Rob and his team to ask all the other academic departments the same questions. In the end, collaboration, flexibility, and innovation are guiding themes for all the renovations—for classrooms, breakout spaces, and faculty planning spaces in the new building, Hagerman, and Schoolhouse. Of course, now that most of the planning is done, the big question is, how do we pay for such extensive work? Over the last two years, we have been sharing the concept with the board and prospective donors. Ultimately, the cost to build the new building ($14 million), to endow the new building ($6 million), and to renovate Hagerman and Schoolhouse and create an academic quad ($5 million) is a hefty price tag! True to Holderness, however, we will not start construction until we have pledges in hand for the full amount.

Enter our incredibly generous Holderness family. First, the Holderness Board of Trustees, led by Board Chair Bob Hall, have been incredibly active. ere has been full board participation, and most board members have made their biggest donations ever. at commitment has helped inspire other members of the Holderness family to make stretch gifts, including three exceedingly generous matching gifts—one for Hagerman, one for the academic quad, and one for the new academic building. e matches for Hagerman and the quad have already been met. e final match for the new academic building is both generous and very creative. e family wants to exceed the $25 million goal to help with rapidly increasing construction costs as well as to give us a contingency. ey have made a dollar-to-dollar match for the next 2.5 million new dollars we raise, and then they will match every additional new dollar with a $1.60 to make the entire gift $6.5 million, provided we raise $5 million in new dollars. Already multiple families have stepped up to get us to a point where we are in the final push. e proj-

ect is now “public,” and we welcome any member of the Holderness family to take advantage of this very generous matching donation to help get us the full $5 million and thus $6.5 million. If interested, we would be delighted to have as many folks as possible donate. As Bob Hall frequently encourages us, “We want a shovel in the ground by the summer of 2019!” Oh, so where will that “shovel” dig? Originally, the site was behind the backstop of the baseball field. However, after extensive conversations with key Holderness stakeholders—including many former board members and alumni—it was clear that this location would be problematic. Only this spring, did we go back and look at other sites. A new site, near where Marshall existed for 70 years behind Carpenter and next to Alfond Library, became a possibility, and the board approved this location in late June. Let’s go back to Bishop Niles and his view over Plymouth, the local mountains, and the Baker River Valley. 140 years later this view aligns with our goal to bring the outdoors into new buildings; this new facility will have views on both sides, out to the mountains on one side and onto the academic quad on the other. ank you, Bishop Niles, for your vision for this unique Episcopal school in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, founded to work for the “betterment of humankind and God’s creation.” • Phil Peck Head of School




School was founded in the Episcopal tradition with “ Holderness the motto ‘For God and Humankind.’ And what that means is that we hope that you will take with you a spirituality of connectedness—a personal connection to that which is greater than oneself, a personal connection to others, and a personal connection to the breadth of God’s creation.” – THE REV. CANON RANDOLPH K. DALES







Congratulations to the Class of 2018!




CAITLIN ELIZABETH BLINKHORN Norwich, Vermont ETHAN ROY BLISS West Charlton, New York JOSHUA IRVING BLISS West Charlton, New York JUSTIN JAMES BOES Marblehead, Massachusetts NATHANIEL CHARLES BOWLER Canterbury, New Hampshire SEAN DANIEL BRYANT Falmouth, Maine WEI HAO CAI Xiamen, China LY THI KHANH CAO Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam


STUART GLESSNER CLIFFORD Bethlehem, New Hampshire PHILLIP SHERIDAN CRONIN Plymouth, Massachusetts CHLOE CELESTE DAWKINS Weston, Connecticut JACK MACPHERSON DRISCOLL Wellesley, Massachusetts REBECCA EDITH FEIST Concord, Massachusetts CAROLINE NICOLE FERRI Farmington, Connecticut ALEXANDRE GAGNON Dorval, Quebec, Canada PHILMON FESEHA GEBREHIWET Boston, Massachusetts NICHOLAS JAMES GRAMMAS Hamilton, Massachusetts WILLIAM RAY HARKER Janesville, Wisconsin JOHN PATRICK HAYES Boulder, Colorado JENNIFER DAVENPORT HERRICK Telluride, Colorado QUINN MARTIN HOUSEMAN Holderness, New Hampshire RYAN MAHONEY HOUX Manchester, New Hampshire CHARLES STEWART HUTCHINSON Marblehead, Massachusetts LINDSEY MERCER HYLAND Lincoln, New Hampshire LARS WILLIAM IVARSON Exeter, New Hampshire COOPER SCOTT JAY Amherst, New Hampshire BENJAMIN ZAK JEROME Brandon, Vermont ANNA SOPHIE JONES Westmount, Quebec, Canada DEVIN MASON KELLEY Medfield, Massachusetts SIRAPOP KLINKACHORN Bangkok, ailand

BENJAMIN LEE LASH Waterville Valley, New Hampshire KATHLEEN KHANYISI LIECH Nairobi, Kenya ANDREW ROBERT MACLEOD Bonita Springs, Florida VANESSA SANDRA MALDONADO Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Quebec, Canada DARIELLE A’DREAM MATTHEWS Wheatley Heights, New York BERNADETTE ANNE MCLAUGHLIN Anchorage, Alaska PAUL JOSEPH MENARD Hollis, New Hampshire HARLEY ANDREW MICHAELS Kirkland, Quebec, Canada MARY SOPHIA MILES Manchester, Vermont YIFU MU Beijing, China WARICH NGAMKANJANARAT Bangkok, ailand DUY TRUONG NGUYEN Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam MITCHELL DAVID ALEXANDER OROSZ Welland, Ontario, Canada MATTHEW D. PASIC Cotuit, Massachusetts KEEGAN DEAN PENNY ornton, New Hampshire BRIDGET RILEY POPE Concord, New Hampshire PETER MCCLEARY REYNOLDS Sudbury, Massachusetts FLETCHER SCOTT ROBBINS Meredith, New Hampshire SARAH BROOKS ROGERS Denver, Colorado PISETH KEO SAM Lowell, Massachusetts MORGAN WHITCOMB SAWYER Falmouth, Maine LILA SELLEW SCHIBLI Wenham, Massachusetts

AUDREY CAROLYN SIMONSON Ashford, Washington KIELY MARIE SMIGA-MCMANUS Etna, New Hampshire ISABELLA ANN SMITH Laconia, New Hampshire SONG TANG Beijing, China TAWN ASARE TOMASI Williston, Vermont QUANG MINH TRAN Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam UYEN PHU HOANG TRAN Raleigh, North Carolina ALLYSON KATHERINE TRASK North Attleboro, Massachusetts DUNG TUAN TRIEU Hanoi, Viet Nam LUKE MCCALL VALENTINE Ludlow, Vermont ABIGAIL LYNCH WISEMAN Williamstown, Massachusetts ALEX RICHARD WISNES Hanover, Massachusetts ELISE LYNN YABROUDY Nashua, New Hampshire LOREA MONICA ZABALETA Bozeman, Montana DIEGO ZESATI ICAZA Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico IAN ZANE ZIMMERMANN Gilford, New Hampshire




Class of 2018 College Destinations

Bates College (4) Bishop’s University Boston College Boston University Bowdoin College Bryant University California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo Carnegie Mellon University (2) Clark University Colby College (2) Colgate University College of Charleston (2) Colorado College (2)


Colorado School of Mines Connecticut College Dartmouth College (2) Denison University Drexel University Eckerd College FairďŹ eld University Fashion Institute of Technology Georgetown University Hobart and William Smith Colleges Johnson & Wales University, Rhode Island Lehigh University (2)


Massachusetts Institute of Technology New York University Northeastern University Occidental College Purdue University Quinnipiac University Regis College Robert Morris University, Pennsylvania Salem State University Skidmore College St. Lawrence University (8) Stanford University

Trinity College University of Colorado, Boulder University of Denver (2) University of New Hampshire, Durham (4) University of Utah University of Vermont (5) University of Washington University of Waterloo Vassar College Wake Forest University Wesleyan University Whittier College


Every single one of us committed ourselves to this special place, “ and that commitment was impressive…What we did not realize was that our commitment to this school was actually a commitment to ourselves. And that commitment to ourselves helped us to grow into driven students, athletes, and leaders within our community.” – PRESIDENT NICHOLAS GRAMMAS ’18




Scenes from Commencement 2018







2018 Commencement Awards Cum Laude Members e following students’ outstanding academic achievements have qualified them for induction into the Cum Laude Society, a society modeled after Phi Beta Kappa for high school students. An asterisk indicates a senior inducted as a junior in 2017. class of 2018 r Eliza Paly Batchelder r Caitlin Elizabeth Blinkhorn r Ly i Khanh Cao r Caroline Nicole Ferri r John Patrick Hayes r Sirapop Klinkachorn r Yifu Mu r Warich Ngamkanjanarat r Fletcher Scott Robbins* r Audrey Carolyn Simonson r Kiely Marie Smiga-McManus r Song Tang* r Uyen Phu Hoang Tran * r Luke McCall Valentine* r Abigail Lynch Wiseman* r Lorea Monica Zabaleta* class of 2019 r Atte Ilmari Aalto r alia Lynn Anastos r Claudia Violette Cantin r Linh Khanh Nguyen Hoang r Ziqing Lin r Avery Denison Reynolds r Katherine Sarah Urdang r Andrey W. Yao






THE ELEMENTARY SPANISH PRIZE Alia Piccinni ’21 Isabella Cecilia Rowan ’21





2018 Commencement Awards Commencement Awards THE REV. B.W. “PETE” WOODWARD, JR. PRIZE For exceptional leadership, academic achievement, and service in the junior year of college Lee Scaralia ’15 THE DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI AWARD For exemplifying the highest standards of the school William D. Adams ’65 THE RIGHT REV. DOUGLAS E. THEUNER AWARD For increasing and furthering the mission of Holderness School e Rt. Rev. A. Robert Hirschfeld THE FACULTY AWARD For hard work, a consistently positive attitude, and immeasurable compassion for others William Ray Harker ’18 THE BOB BROOKS AWARD For making Holderness feel like home to ninth-graders Bridget Riley Pope ’18 THE M.J. LAFOLEY AWARD For outstanding character and integrity in the third or fourth form Macy Grace Arsenault ’20 THE COACH’S AWARD For contributions to the spirit of Holderness on and off the field Charles Stewart Hutchinson ’18 Kiely Marie Smiga-McManus ’18 THE WEBSTER CUP AWARD For excellence in athletics Quinn Martin Houseman ’18 Lila Sellew Schibli ’18 THE NED GILLETTE SPIRIT AWARD For leadership, competitive attitude, and a spirit of adventure Benjamin Zak Jerome ’18

Lee Scaralia ’15 receiving The Rev. B.W. “Pete” Woodward, Jr. Prize

THE DON AND PAT HENDERSON AWARD For contributions to the welfare of the community Abigail Lynch Wiseman ’18 THE RICHARD C. GALLOP AWARD For creative and community leadership Song Tang ’18 THE DANA H. ROWE MEMORIAL AWARD Given to a senior girl for academic achievement, participation in sports and extracurricular activities, and love of life Mary Sophia Miles ’18 THE CLARKSON AWARD For using her abilities to the fullest and persevering no matter the circumstances Sarah Quimby Berube ’18

THE HASLAM AWARD For excellence in athletics, sportsmanship, and scholarship Audrey Carolyn Simonson ’18 THE DALLAS AWARD For loyalty and dedication to the Judeo-Christian ideals of the school Luke McCall Valentine ’18 THE MARSHALL AWARD For outstanding contributions to the life of the school Darielle A’Dream Matthews ’18 THE WALTER ALVIN FROST AWARD For reaching the highest standards of the school Nicholas James Grammas ’18




holderness school today | FALL 2018

An Opportunity for Self-Discovery and Reflection THE JOURNEY OF SELF-DISCOVERY AT HOLDERNESS BEGINS WITH ENROLLMENT IN CLASSES, CHOOSING ATHLETICS TEAMS, AND PARTICIPATING IN THE LIFE OF THE SCHOOL. BUT EVEN DURING SENIOR YEAR, WHEN STUDENTS MAY THINK THEY HAVE IT ALL FIGURED OUT AND ARE PREPARING TO LEAVE, THE LESSONS CONTINUE. SOME MAY SAY, IN FACT, THE LESSONS HAVE JUST BEGUN. BY EMILY MAGNUS ’88 It’s after lunch on a thursday, and nInthand tenth-graders are filing into the Chapel of the Holy Cross. Daylight pours through the stained-glass windows above the alter, backlighting the podium and catching on the dust particles drifting through the air. Despite the warm fall sunshine outside, the inside of the chapel is cool, and students keep their jackets on as they settle into their seats. Today the organ and piano are quiet— no traditional hymns, no music to inspire thoughtful meditation or personal reflection. The solemnness of the occasion, however, is suggestive of a religious service. Perhaps no souls will be saved today, but the college admission process is serious, and students are gathering for the first time to begin their journey with Holderness Director of College Counseling Bruce Barton. Bruce will tell you he meets in the chapel for college counseling meetings because it is the only space that is consistently available. But the nave, with its dark timbers and creaking floors, the air thick with spiritual intent, offers itself as a place for considering the important decisions the students must make, ones that should

be based not on scores or statistics but on self-reflection and personal passions.

BY THE NUMBERS Admittedly, the college process has more than its fair share of scores and statistics. When students begin meeting with Bruce and his team in the fall of their ninthgrade year, they hear plenty about stats. Grades matter; standardized tests are not to be ignored; goals scored and races won can be an important part of a college application. National statistics matter as well. During the 2017–18 application season, New York University received 76,000 applications— the highest number of applications ever for a private university. Hamilton College, Bates College, and Middlebury College received record numbers of applications as well. This is due in part to the ease with which students can now submit applications. As the Common Application grows in popularity and digital submissions become more streamlined, each new class at Holderness has to come to terms with the vast number of applicants with whom they annually compete for a select number of college acceptances.

And if a student wants to pursue athletics in college, there’s plenty of statistics for that as well. If you are one of the 1,057,382 high school football players in the United States who wants to play college ball, you have about a 6.9% chance of becoming an ncaa athlete. If you are a hockey player, your chances are a little better; in men’s ice hockey, of the 35,210 high school athletes, 11.9% continue playing at the ncaa level. As one of the 9,599 female ice hockey players in the US, your chances increase to 24.5%. (ncaa.org) Lastly, there is the cost. According to the College Board, public four-year instate tuition and fees in 2017–18 averaged $9,970. Public four-year out-of-state tuition and fees averaged $25,620, while four-year private nonprofit tuition and fees averaged $34,740 (trends.collegeboard.org). With room and board, the total cost for one year of college can be over $60,000. As these prices continue to rise, Bruce says, families are increasingly choosing cost over prestige, electing to send their children to state schools instead of their more expensive private equivalents. “Price points for a college education rival those of homeownership,” says Bruce. “This is a distinct advantage for

FALL 2018 | holderness school today


full-pay students; it is also causing many families to pause and consider equal but cheaper options.” In fact, there are countless options from which students can choose, and to reduce the college process to a numbers game does a disservice to the Holderness College Counseling Office goals. While numbers are good at revealing trends and illustrating the landscape into which Holderness students are stepping, it doesn’t provide a complete picture of the four-year journey students take when applying to college.

THE FIRST TWO YEARS: ENGAGING IN SELF-DISCOVERY Even in ninth grade, Bruce meets with students, once in the fall and then again in the spring, letting them know what’s ahead and linking their present academic and extracurricular choices to what it will mean in terms of college pursuits. When appropriate, students should be taking academically demanding courses and engaging in community activities in meaningful and impactful ways. US colleges, Bruce tells students, want to see applicants who are doing more than just studying. In tenth grade, students begin taking standardized tests, both for practice and to understand the differences between the two primary tests, the sat and the act. While not all colleges are interested in seeing students’ standardized test results, they remain, for most students, an important and necessary part of their application—one for which they spend significant time studying during the summer months and into the fall. Students in ninth and tenth grade also begin to hear about college athletic recruitment. Some student-athletes are actively recruited by universities; Bruce says their numbers are around 5%. The remaining 95% of high school student-athletes have to rely on their own promotional


skills to get noticed by colleges and universities; Bruce often refers to them as “self-recruited athletes.” Even before contacting college coaches at both the Division I and III level, Bruce tells students they need to create resumes and highlight reels. Resumes include both their athletic accomplishments as well as their contributions to the communities in which they live; colleges are expecting not just stand-out athletes but active citizens and strong students. Highlight reels are similar—they should offer glimpses of an athlete involved in a variety of plays—showing an athlete’s versatility, agility, and strength. Student-athletes must also plan on attending multiple camps and showcases. This is particularly true in sports like basketball, lacrosse, baseball, softball, field hockey, and ice hockey. In this very calculated process, student-athletes contact college coaches prior to the showcases, share their resumes and highlight reels, and begin forming relationships ahead of time; at an event where there are hundreds of athletes and multiple teams competing at once, the odds of a college coach noticing an athlete, without previously building a relationship, are slim. “Colleges like showcases because they can see 150 players in one weekend,” explains Holderness Athletic Director Rick Eccleston ’92. “It’s become a big industry with ‘fabricated’ cities, all centered around college athletic recruiting. If you don’t play the game, you are making it difficult for yourself.” Admittedly, it is a competitive process and isn’t for every student-athlete. But as they progress through their years at Holderness, and as their athletic skills develop, student-athletes have the knowledge they need to decide at what level they want to compete, or not. It’s a discovery process that begins with coaches and setting goals as early as ninth grade, and

holderness school today | FALL 2018

continues with guidance from Bruce and the other college counselors throughout their time at Holderness.

THE SECOND TWO YEARS: FINDING THE RIGHT FIT The real work begins in eleventh grade when students receive college advisors and begin to attend regular college counseling meetings with their classmates. In addition to making sure their academic records reflect their best efforts, students attend a local college fair and meet with their college advisors separately to begin compiling a list of possible colleges they want to visit and perhaps apply. College admission representatives from local universities visit campus as well, participating in panel discussions dedicated to answering students’ questions about the application process. Lastly, students can attend college essay writing workshops and work through an online test preparation course. What sets the tone for their college search is the Holderness School College Counseling Handbook, which begins with this statement of approach: “The academic program at Holderness School is geared to provide strong preparation for all colleges and universities.” It goes on to acknowledge the intensity of the process but ends with this goal: “to achieve a college placement that is a good match on all levels: academic, extra-curricular, and social. The college experience is, for students, a place and a time where and when they may grow, learn, and achieve.” While acting as a guide to the students’ four-year process, the handbook contains not just practical information about when to sign up for testing and how to access Naviance—the school’s online program that provides college planning and assessment tools for parents and students—but it also contains words of wisdom from previous Holderness students and lots of advice


about keeping the process in perspective. There’s this piece of advice for parents: “Resolve early on not to succumb to the hype and hysteria surrounding this process.” And for students: “Engage in the process of self-assessment with an open mind; honestly assess strengths, weaknesses, goals, and expectations, and try not to compare oneself to anyone else.” The college counselors continue stressing the same approach. “If done right, applying to college should be an opportunity for self-discovery and reflection,” says Bruce. “The more students know about themselves and what is important to them, the more likely they are to find schools that are right for them. At its best, it should be about fit, not prestige and reputation.” To shift students’ focus away from statistics and rankings, Bruce and the college counseling team begin their meetings with students with a survey. While there are questions about what they are looking for in a college, students are also asked questions like, “What one event/circumstance/ experience has changed you the most?” “Identify your favorite Holderness extracurricular activity and explain why it is important to you…Why is it enjoyable and/or important to you? Does it impact how you connect with others?” For Kristen Fischer, who is currently the dean of faculty and was one of three counselors who worked with Holderness students last year, the hard part is the time limit. “It often takes several face-to-face conversations for the outside opinions to fall away,” says Kristen. “I think we are conditioned to take other people’s points of view to heart, and it is hard to fight that and focus on oneself. I ask my students to let the self-focused thoughts settle and simmer, but there is only so much time they have to do that before applications are due.” Fortunately, with a broad range of experiences, Holderness school’s counselors have more to offer than just time.

College Admission Visitors 2009–18

Over the past ten years the number of college admission representatives visiting Holderness has doubled, giving students plenty of opportunities to ask questions and explore a variety of options for college.

Holderness receives visits from college admission officers on an almost daily basis in the fall. In fact, during the 2017–18 school year, over 120 different colleges visited Holderness to speak with and interview Holderness students, some more than once. Bruce and the other college counselors also spend time each year traveling to colleges and universities throughout the US, talking to admission officers, touring campuses, and learning about the variety of options students have for colleges. This adds up to a vast wealth of knowledge that the counselors can share with students. College visits for students are important as well; by walking the paths of a wide variety of college campuses, they become discerning consumers, understanding how size and location feel in real life. Where do they see themselves for the next four years? How will the experience shape them for life after college? Many Holderness students begin visiting col-

leges during the summer before their eleventh-grade year and continue through the spring of their twelfth-grade year, visiting and revisiting even after they have been accepted.

THE GAP YEAR In some cases, however, college isn’t the right choice, at least not right away. Nation-wide, US students are increasingly following their European counterparts and choosing to take a year off between high school and college. For some students at Holderness, this means playing junior hockey. “College coaches are often encouraging studentsathletes—particularly hockey players and skiers—to take a year off from school to train and improve their skills and technique,” says Rick Eccleston. “The average age of a college hockey player right now is 24.” Other students are using the time to volunteer, travel, or work, taking time to

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mature, save money, and figure out their goals before returning to school. According to an article in The Atlantic, “How Common Is a Gap Year?” “While there are no official statistics that track participation in gap year programs, the Associated Press reports that 30,000 to 40,000 students take advantage of the break each year, and the year 2015 showed a 22 percent increase in students taking gap years over the previous year, according to surveys taken by the American Gap Association.” For many Holderness students, gap years also provide more options. One student, whose original college destination was New England College, played junior hockey for a year and was able to add Colby College to his list of choices. Another student, whose original plan was to attend Colorado College, spent a year training and ski racing and ended up with an offer from Brown University. While the focus may not be about prestige, students find that gap years are an opportunity to hit pause, focus on passions and interests as a means for self-discovery, and as a consequence, find they have more choices than if they had gone directly to college.

DEFINING SUCCESS But given the wide range of choices, how do students, as well as the College Counseling Office, know they have succeeded? For some, Bruce will admit, prestige continues to matter; the list of colleges and universities Holderness students attend matters to many families and is considered carefully by prospective families. Do Holderness students attend top US colleges? For those who care, yes, students in the Class of 2018 were admitted to Carnegie Mellon University, Dartmouth College, MIt, and Stanford University. But they were also admitted, and are attending, a wide range of other schools— including the University of New Hampshire,


Holderness College Applications 2010–18

While the number of applications submitted by students over the past ten years has remained relatively steady, the timing has changed. With Early Action and Early Decision applications, deadlines are typically two months earlier, speeding up, or in some cases extending, the application process significantly.

Eckerd College, Robert Morris University, and the Fashion Institute of Technology (a comprehensive list of college destinations can be found on page 10). The complete story reveals that 89% of Holderness seniors were accepted into, and are attending, one of their top four choices. They are playing rugby and lacrosse and field hockey. They are painting and acting and singing in college a cappella groups. They are pursuing degrees in engineering and fine arts and business. In short, their stories are as varied as the colleges and programs to which they are committing. “Often it isn’t until students are living the college experience that they really know what they want to take out of it,” Bruce says. “Are they challenged? Are they making friends? Are they expanding their world views? It’s conversations with graduates that help us determine the success of the Holderness College Counseling

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Office.” Thankfully, Bruce gets plenty of this type of feedback—from students who are engaged in their college communities and are well on their way to discovering their passions and interests. S






When students return to the chapel one last time in the spring of their senior year, for the most part they have chosen their next destinations. Surrounded by their classmates, they share the same mix of anxiety and excitement. But with the grace of God and all the knowledge they have gained during their years at Holderness, they go forth to continue their journeys with a clear sense of purpose and plenty of self-knowledge. •

The Eagle Has Landed SEVEN RECENT GRADUATES OF HOLDERNESS, NOW OFF TO COLLEGE OR BEYOND, REFLECT ON WHAT THE TRANSITION WAS LIKE, GOING FROM HERE TO, WELL, WHEREVER. BY RICK CAREY It’s not unlIke neIl arMstrong’s Inaugural step on to the lunar surface, those first moments of being alone at college—similarly the consequence of lengthy preparation and help from a team of experts, an experience similarly unprecedented and charged with the unknown. “I remember my first day of orientation at Franklin & Marshall, and walking around campus,” says Lee Scaralia ’15, laughing. “At Holderness it’s more or less mandatory that you wave at or say hi to everyone you meet on the paths. But when I did that at Franklin & Marshall—weird looks, a lot of those.” So Country Mouse, welcome to the city. Of course there is also a flip side to that loss of intimacy. “It was actually a nice change, I thought, walking around and seeing people you didn’t know, and people who didn’t know everything about you,” says Risa Mosenthal ’17, now at Brown University in the heart of Providence. “At a bigger school you have your own identity.” If you talk to Risa, you’ll find that she quite understands how Lee felt on that first day, and vice versa. And even if the move is simply from this small, rural independent school to a small, rural college, it’s different. You still wake up and you’re not in Kansas anymore, to shift the metaphor a bit. And you just hope that you and the Holderness experts have done the job in preparing yourself—academically, socially, and all the rest of it besides—for everything that’s to come. S






Of course what comes first—ever since the invention of independent college-preparatory schools—are the academics. While the

classroom may be one leg of a threelegged stool (mind, body, spirit) at Holderness, it becomes more the raison d’etre at the college level. And at Brigham Young University-Idaho, Holten Flinders ’17, for example, has found the academic challenges to be in some ways easier than those at Holderness. “The classes were just about as hard as Holdy’s Advanced Placement classes,” he says. “We just had a bunch more time to do the work, and many more resources available.” You’ll hear that over and over again in speaking to young alumni, this general equivalency in rigor between the school’s AP curriculum and the entry-level course work at the colleges they attend. Where these alumni feel they have an advantage, in general, has to do with matters of timemanagement and self-advocacy. They remember at Holderness there were so many different things to be accomplished each day by way of that three-legged stool that each minute of time was its own unit of currency. In a less structured college environment, however, Holderness grads feel themselves blessed in something their peers are more likely to squander. “I have friends who have a hard time managing the time to get to the library, or to meet with their teams on group projects,” notes Becca Kelly ’15, now at Plymouth State University. “After Holderness, I find it easy.” Most seem to cruise along like Holten and Becca, finding it easy to touch all the bases in this environment, as if they had hit a home run and could merely trot. If

there is a problem, it has to do with the sudden lack of structure in the way time comes at you, as if the base paths had gone blurry. “Everything was so locked in, day to day at Holderness; at 8–10 PM each night, for example, you did your homework,” says Risa Mosenthal, who is playing Division I lacrosse at Brown. “But here your class schedule and free time are sort of randomized, and after lacrosse practice I’m just worn out, have a hard time getting to the library. So I try to get homework done before practice, but it’s a challenge—an adjustment.” Charles Harker ’15 is also playing lacrosse—at Bates College, Division III—and rather counter-intuitively finds the academics easiest when, in the spring, he’s busiest with his sport. And again, it’s a matter of structure: “In the off-season our practice times are jumbled,” he says, “but in the spring we settle into a set routine of classes, practice, homework, more like Holderness, and it’s easier for me to focus.” When confronted herself with swaths of free time, Liz Casey ’17—also at Bates— cheerfully filled in the gaps with intramural soccer and a range of extra-curricular activities of a sort hard to fit into the Holderness package: Christian Fellowship, Big Brother/Big Sister, and Ultimate Frisbee as a club sport. Charles Harker, meanwhile, does volunteer work in Lewiston, ME, with its elementary schools and Somali refugee population, while also hosting a mostly sports-oriented call-in show—“The Bantering Bardwell Boys”—on Bates radio. Becca Kelly helps put out the

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CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE: Holten Flinders climbing near Brigham Young University-Idaho; Lee Scaralia (far left) in 2016, with other Human Rights Campaign interns, working at the one-year celebration of marriage equality; Risa Mosenthal representing Brown University on the lacrosse field

Psu literary magazine and has an off-campus job at Tartaglia’s Pizza in Campton. Lee Scaralia is a dynamo in this regard, enough so to claim the 2018 Rev. B.W. “Pete” Woodward, Jr. Prize for “exceptional leadership, academic achievement, and/or service in the junior year of college.” Lee’s list of accomplishments include president of Franklin & Marshall’s Sexuality and Gender Alliance; conversation facilitator for the college’s Day of Dialogue (a community-building exercise); Franklin Scribe Society member (helping students unable to do their own note-taking); awards to pursue political science research, a human


rights internship, and in recognition of effective leadership of the sga; and more. There is time, but energy and experience factor into it as well. Lee is fueled in part by the sense of having been something of an outsider at Holderness—“Not so much as I thought, though, with the number of classmates who have since come out as queer or trans.”—and then the astonishment of being elected a floor leader here. “It provided me a skill set I didn’t know I needed,” Lee says, “and the best preparation for much of what I’m doing in college.” Then the matter of self-advocacy at college—ensuring that you don’t slip between

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the cracks in a college’s larger, more cosmopolitan community—is helped along not only by the leadership experience made available to many at Holderness, but also by the family-style intimacy of boarding school life. “Well, I knew I couldn’t hang in professors’ apartments at night, like at Holderness,” Lee adds, “but I was surprised by how easy it was to find help, to make connections with professors. I’m working with a professor now on a project in political ethnography, and he makes me feel like an equal, like I’m making a real contribution to this field.”


This sort of “connectability” with professors is reported often by Holderness grads, and is no doubt cultivated by the experience of having classroom teachers as coaches and dorm parents as well. While a student at Plymouth State, Kendra Morse ’13 had a front-line job in Instructional Technology, was the sort of Ninja techie who had to get everything working right during live class time. “That was a lot of responsibility, but I was given that because I knew how to let my superiors know that I could handle it,” Kendra says. She now teaches science at Stevens High School in Claremont, NH. “Even there, people forget that I’m just in my early twenties,” she adds. “I come across as older than I am because of my comfort with older people.” S






In a survey done this last spring as part of Holderness’s neasc re-accreditation process, 55 percent of responding alumni “strongly” agreed with the statement, “I was pleased with my college placement”; another 30 percent “somewhat” agreed. Most respondents were older alumni, and younger grads skewed more to “strongly.” But if choosing the right college remains a delicate art, most of the suspense here seems to involve non-academic factors. Becca Kelly, a day student at Holderness, spent an unhappy semester at the University of Maine-Farmington, and she cites both social and academic reasons for transferring to Plymouth State. But in the foreground she mentions “bad luck with my roommate,” adding, “Here I can commute to campus and live with my parents, and it’s made for a much easier transition.” Liz Casey and Charles Harker are both happy at Bates, but both have had to adjust to opposing concerns about size. “I was so comfortable at Holderness, knowing every one of the teachers, all the students,” she says. “Bates is a small

school, sure, but it’s bigger—you can’t know everybody—and therefore not quite the same. It’s a little more impersonal.” Charles, on the other hand, couldn’t help worrying that Bates might be a little too small. “It’s bigger, but not a whole lot bigger than Holderness, with similarities in its academics and its community culture— and each year there are two or three other Holderness kids going there with you,” he says. “Sometimes I found myself thinking, ‘Hmm—maybe this is a little too similar? Am I repeating myself?’” A semester abroad in New Zealand was reassuringly different, but otherwise nothing has bound him to the school so well as lacrosse—“A great group of friends, awesome teammates, guys who keep their focus on school, who are fun to hang with, who love the sport.” Risa Mosenthal was recruited to play lacrosse at Brown while just a sophomore at Holderness. A day student here, she had little trouble adjusting to dorm life away from home because of the ready-made social network provided by her team and their year-round practices and activities. “You’re always involved with your teammates and benefit from their support,” she says. “In sophomore year you can pick where and with whom you live, and the lacrosse players do tend to clump together.” Both confess to missing the different sports they played at Holderness, the three-season calendar. “Oh, I especially miss the heightened excitement of first picking up a lacrosse stick in the spring,” Risa says. But at the same time Charles, no less than Risa, relishes the year-round community provided by his sport. “I love the team aspect,” he says. “It’s a peak experience to play lacrosse at this level.” They work like skeleton keys into the social life of the college, these varsity uniforms, but they don’t have to be varsity, or even uniforms. Kendra Morse made friends

at Plymouth State through club hockey, and Liz Casey has found herself a Holderness-like community on Bates’s Ultimate Frisbee club team—which, incidentally, finished second last year at the college national tournament in Illinois. But there are other keys into that life, of course: the social activism of Lee Scaralia; the IT work of Kendra Morse; the media profile of Charles Harker. Holten Flinders loved rock-climbing at Holderness, and of course he has many more rocks to climb around Rexburg, and new friends to go with. Or sometimes one settles comfortably into this new community through an umbrella element of its culture. “I wasn’t really excited about the whole church aspect of Byu,” adds Holten. But he found both peace and focus in the prayers, hymns, or scripture readings that precede each class at Byu, and also inspiration in the community’s wholesale ethos of support. “So I’ve grown my faith and decided to go on a mission for two years.” Holten enjoyed if not a gap year after Holderness, at least a gap experience—a 47-day cycling trip from Montana to the Pacific Northwest, and then down to Mexico. Of these seven recent grads interviewed by HST, only one did a gap year after Holderness, and it was one that was forced on her. “I had gotten into Emerson College, but I’m paying my own way, and I just couldn’t afford it,” Becca Kelly says. “So I took a year off, worked three jobs, and at Psu I’m at a school with manageable tuition.” Kendra Morse thinks a gap year—as a general proposition—is a good idea, given the consequences of college choice, the informative value of real-world experience. “I would have taken one myself if I hadn’t been so certain I wanted to be a science teacher.” Then she graduated with debt, as will several other alumni mentioned here, but

FALL 2018 | holderness school today


CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE: Liz Casey in September 2017 during a hike in New Hampshire’s Pemigewasset Wilderness, where she did her AESOP (Annual Entering Student Outdoor Program) with Bates College; Kendra Morse teaching in Claremont, NH; Charles Harker on the lacrosse field at Bates College

she variously minimized that debt by attending a state school, living at home, and working on campus. “Then, if I keep teaching in the Claremont school district for five years, as I intend to do,” she adds, “the State of New Hampshire repays my debt.” If for any reason she couldn’t teach, however, Kendra knows she could find work in IT, a safety net that lies at the core of the advice she would offer to current Holderness students. “If you get a job, treat it like a possible career,” she says. “Everyone you meet in college, everything you do—it could lead to places you didn’t imagine.”


Her peers will say much the same to all those on the cusp of this journey away from this little school in the hills to another planet, to the Land of Oz—even if, like Plymouth State, Oz is a ten-minute walk from Holderness. Wherever it lies, it’s a place teeming with new challenges, new dimensions of identity, and life-altering possibilities. “Try a wide range of courses,” says Liz Casey. “I was surprised to find myself loving a geology course I took on a whim.”

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“I wish I’d gone to more club meetings my freshman year, gotten involved in more different things,” adds Risa Mosenthal. “Make your own adventure,” recommends Holten Flinders. “Do something you might not be sure you can do.” In other words, from the comfort zone of Holderness, from the moon-lander of this school’s signature balance of support and challenge, venture forth and challenge yourself more boldly. One small step for…Yeah, you know the rest. •

Catching Up with Bob Low KEEPER OF RELATIONSHIPS It’s been 12 years since Bob Low was teaching at Holderness. Much has changed in his life, but he remains at heart an educator, one that recognizes the value of friendship and close connections— in the classroom, on the field, and in daily life. by Suzanne Dewey he crosses the diner parking lot with purpose and a

He has been an educator for thirty-three years (four at Cardigan

quickness of step. Peter Barnum (former admissions director and now

Mountain, four at Avon Old Farms, 12 at Holderness, and going on 13 at

senior associate director of major gifts) knocks on the window and Bob

Groton) and for 25 of those years, he served in a dorm. He knows kids

Low looks up. The smile that crosses his face reminds me of sunshine and

well and keeps in touch with many former students with some frequency.

immediately signals that he sees, knows, and cares about us. It is the kind

As he quickly rattled off several names from Holderness, you could see

of smile that would reassure a student, and even bolster their spirits, no

his affection for those kids just in naming them. Bob admitted, “Being in a

matter what kind of day they might be experiencing. And that’s really

dorm or even in a residential program reminds you that it is an all-in pro-

who Bob Low is—the personification of an educator who cares mightily

fession. It’s what we sign up for—a deeper level of commitment!”

about relationships. Bob Low served as English teacher, dorm advisor, coach, and athletic

We talked a good deal about what is important in today’s schools, and Bob had a lot to say. Though it has taken experience to teach him, he

director at Holderness from 1994 to 2006. He is now the athletic director

fondly recalled former Holderness Dean of Faculty Jim Nourse’s guidance

at Groton School in Massachusetts. Ever the English teacher, he immedi-

on “less is more” and shared concern that as we are doing more and more

ately notes the misspelling of Eggs Benedict on the breakfast menu as he

in each program, the kids are getting squeezed. He has learned that you

sits down to join us. Bob and Peter have kept in frequent touch since Bob

can’t just pull back on your own program and hope that everyone else

left Holderness, and I was lucky to join them for breakfast to “catch up”

will follow your lead; it has to be a united effort—a holistic reduction for

with Bob.

all areas.

He has been, as he does every summer, working at Cardigan Mountain

Bob contemplated that the push for more of everything might be driv-

School’s Summer Session in Canaan, NH. There are several Holderness

en by our society’s focus on the label or the prestige of something. He

alumni who also work at Cardigan—Tai Haluszka ‘06, Hedi Droste ‘14,

wondered out loud if the experience, or the intrinsic value of an experi-

Charlie Day ‘15, Kris Langetieg ’97, as well as former employees Chris Day

ence, gets lost in a check-box mentality of “been there and done that,”

(now head of school at Cardigan), Cynthia Day, Hal Gartner, and Steve

versus the genuine savoring and learning from those experiences. In

Solberg. As he shared the names of his summer co-workers, you could see

today’s competitive landscape for colleges, he sees kids striving in all

his pleasure in knowing and working with a Holderness crew.

kinds of ways.

Bob reported in that his wife, Stacey, is an elementary educator in the

This led us to talk about specialization in athletics. With a furrowed

Fitchburg Public Schools, and their two children, Natalie (age 11) and

brow, Bob remembered, “When I was a kid growing up, it was pretty sim-

Cooper (age 8) keep them busy with various activities—both athletics and

ple—fall was for soccer, winter was for hockey, and spring was lacrosse.

the arts—when not in school at Applewild. As we chatted and the twenty

My son, Cooper, at age eight, had try-outs—try-outs!—for his town mite

years since I last saw Bob melted away, I realized that the details of Bob’s

team in August! And, of course, today many kids play hockey, soccer, etc.

life have changed (he wasn’t even married two decades ago) but his core

all year long. We have to ask ourselves what are we, the adults, doing?!”

values remain rock solid.

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Bob Low at Plain Jane’s Diner with Peter Barnum

Knowing that Holderness is somewhat counter-cultural on athletic

We’ve hit Bob’s sweet spot. He knows that kids need role models and

specialization by requiring three seasons of athletic participation, Bob

it is the relationships with their peers but also with adults where sub-

complimented Holderness on holding a line. “Holderness sets the highest

stance enters the value equation. He admits that a significant benefit of

bar,” he adds. “The college process drives specialization. Every kid, every

boarding schools is that students have the best role models. They are

family, wants that hook. Phil Peck used to talk about notions of ‘excel-

constantly exposed to people who care about kids and work to connect

lence and balance,’ that excellence can be reached through balance. We

and engage them in all kinds of life lessons. And that exposure is every

want to cultivate generalists and not specialists.” Is it a realistic, practical

minute of every day, not just for one class. “Small boarding schools pro-

fight? It depends on a school’s mission. But it is a noble fight. This

vide endless opportunities for communal living,” Bob says, “and

harkens back to the notion that we’ve all added programming. “We’ve

communal living requires unwritten, implied social contracts—dormito-

amped up everywhere,” he finished. “Everyone needs to lop off three to

ries, sit-down dinners, classrooms, sports teams. It is not just winning

five percent of our programs. Make it collaborative, rather than scape-

championships in sports that matter or getting into the ‘right’ college; it is

goating a specific program.”

about the experience of the relationship. Who is checking in kids at

We shifted gears and talked about the growing demands on health and wellness with kids today. Bob said he believes, “It is the relationships in the community that kids need. It is what they get at schools like

night? Who is taking an interest in your kid? That’s what really matters.” That’s how kids thrive, it’s by the relationships they keep. Full circle for me. That’s who Bob Low is—he is a relationship builder.

Holderness and Groton where we still have sit-down meals and all-school

His 33 years as an educator have not altered his core. As Pete Barnum

gatherings, and work to get kids connected by having small dorms, small

and I drive back to Holderness, Pete says, “You can tell who Bob is by

classes, and team sports.”

what he said at the end of breakfast; he keeps in touch with his former students—texting, emailing, or whatever. He keeps the relationships.” •


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FALL 2018 | holderness school today


around the quad

Poetry Super Bowl by PEtEr durNaN Poetry Out Loud is a national recitation competition that begins each year in individual classrooms in January and culminates at the finals in Washington, DC in March. In an article that first appeared in e Lamp—Holderness School’s online forum about teaching and learning— Academic Dean Peter Durnan reflects on his experiences while attending this year’s competition. Between recitation rounds at the Poetry Out Loud National Finals in Washington, DC, I walked from our hotel to the National Gallery—specifically to the East Building and the modern art collection. e walk took longer than I had hoped, and I had less than an hour before closing time, so I made my way directly to my goal—past the Pollacks and the hanging Calders to a lofty space in the back that houses a revolving collection of paintings by Mark Rothko. Rothko gave over one hundred of his paintings to the museum, and, with each visit, I am met with new and different work. I am not sure what it is about his blocks of color that so joyfully haunt me. Later I returned to the Lisner Auditorium at George Washington University for more poetry recitations. ey were stunning. e nationals gather the winning students from each state to vie for the national title. Each student has memorized three poems from a list compiled by the Poetry Out Loud organization. Of the three poems, one is short—fewer than 25 lines—and another is older—written before 1900. Some are familiar classics, poems like Emma Lazarus’s “e New Colossus” (the Statue of Liberty poem) or William Wordsworth’s “e World Is Too Much With Us.” Others are less well known, though no less excellent. In our school finals, I was pleased to hear 11th grader Cate Pollini ’19 bring to life the poem “e Universe As Primal Scream,” a dandy by Tracy K. Smith, the current poet laureate of the United States.


With each recitation I heard at the nationals, I was struck by the sense that each student had chosen work that had keen personal importance. Often the experience of hearing a poem recited well feels like being offered a gift. Here, the stakes felt higher: the poem was more valuable than a gift and was offered with a kind of stunning urgency. Poem after poem, I was riveted. From the outset it was evident that judging this process was a kind of arbitrary charade. Each performance was its own miracle. For twelve years, since Holderness joined the Poetry Out Loud program, I have mused about travelling to DC for the finals. Perhaps dreamed is more accurate than mused. is year, I was offered a ticket by the competitiverecitation excellence of a Holderness 10th grader, Eleni Spiliotes ’20. Her journey to nationals was an unusual one. At our school finals, she tied with Yarmony Bellows ’19, and it took a few days of wrangling and untangling before Eleni was named our school champion. Both regional and state competitions were held during Artward Bound, meaning our school was able to offer fewer fans than we would have liked. But Eleni emerged victorious at the states, a competition held in our State House in Concord, NH. In asking me to be her chaperone, she made true a dream I had harbored since she was three years old. During the event, all of the contestants and chaperones stayed at a little hotel called e Wink on New Hampshire Avenue, and we saw a lot of each other. e kids referred to each other by state, as in “Have you met Hawaii? is is his third nationals!” e talk was of poetry, always poetry. As in “Have you heard Puerto Rico do ‘Spanglish’? Crazy good.” Or, in Eleni’s case,“I can’t believe South Carolina won nationals with my poem!” (Eleni absolutely nailed the Sharon Olds poem “I Go Back to May 1937”; so did the eventual national champion). It is a competitive event: the champion wins twenty thousand dollars. During the evening of finals, the air was electric. Nine finalists were


Eleni Spiliotes ’20 performing in Poetry Out Loud’s national championship in Washington, DC. Eleni was this year’s New Hampshire state representative.

trimmed to three (again, in a process that seemed transparently arbitrary—they were all beyond category to my judgment). e three finalists delivered their final poems flawlessly, gracefully, sublimely. Judgments were rendered. But even in the most competitive moments, the collegiality was palpable. e event ended and no one left. ey remained in the space they had made their own. ese kids understood each other; they respected and liked each other; they rejoiced in each other’s creations. Walking to a gathering of DC-local Holderness alumni later that night, I pondered my day. On my phone, I scrolled through a few photos I had taken of the Rothkos. Stunning. But somehow less so than the poetry recitations. Each of those kids had inhabited a work of art, animated it and brought forth its spirit. Surely Sharon Olds would have been moved by the incarnation of her “I Go Back To May 1937” by Eleni Spiliotes—and equally so by the version delivered by national champion South Carolina (real name Janae Claxton). I walked forward through Dupont Circle eager to meet up with Holderness friends, joyful ghosts of poetry inhabiting me. •

around the quad

Tackling Important Habits Stop by the office of Academic Dean Peter Durnan and ask him about the school’s academic plans for 2018–19, and his conversation touches on nearly endless possibilities. ere’s the All-School Read that’s been on his mind lately. Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward is a challenging book, especially for ninth-graders, and Peter wants to make sure there’s plenty of time to have the rich and engaging conversations that will be necessary to unpack its complicated message. And then there’s the poet he has invited to speak in October—Jamal May an award-winning artist from Detroit. Peter talks of his brilliance and the range of his poems with awe and appreciation. Peter’s conversation also drifts to more existential questions. What is it that we want all Holderness graduates to be able to do? Memorize facts? Recall dates? “I see us moving toward more of an emphasis on fundamentals,” he says. “Our students need to be able to problem solve, to persevere when answers aren’t immediately evident.” While many of the academic departments at Holderness are tackling these important learning habits, Peter focuses on the history curriculum when giving examples. “ere’s enormous energy in the history department right now,” says Peter. “e history faculty are seekers and strivers, and they’ve made some interesting and innovative changes.” Ninth-graders, for instance, enroll in Foundations of Modern Society. e course is intentionally broad in scope and teachers employ 3–4 diverse content areas to grapple with the essential question: “How do social groups form and thrive?” While the specific units vary from year to year and teacher to teacher, there is a special focus on the role governments play in forming societies, the way perception of the “other” can form a group, and the way an idea can develop a group identity. “is introductory history course focuses explicitly on developing in each student an understanding that every source, primary or

secondary, is an interpretation,” says Peter. “To that end, teachers employ in each unit at least two different historians’ interpretations of an historical event, several contrasting primary sources, and various visual interpretations.” is course also shares a main essential question— ”How do I learn best?”—with all ninth-grade English courses and focuses on developing students’ metacognition about their individual learning processes. The Advancement Placement courses for history are changing as well. While still in the piloting phase, AP US/AP European History: Advanced History of the West is a course for students who are passionate about history and want to commit to a two-year course that combines AP US History and AP European History. “Rather than dividing the course by continent, this two-year course moves chronologically through both US and European history,” explains Peter.“Historically there is so much overlap that it makes sense to combine the courses. Pragmatically it makes sense as well. Tenth-graders typically do not do well on the Advanced Placement tests because they have not had enough practice and experience with answering data-based questions. By waiting until the spring of their eleventh-grade year to take both the AP European History and AP US History exams, they have had time to fully develop the skills they need and consequently do better.” At the conclusion of the two years, students can also participate in a two-week tour of Europe, visiting seven countries and seeing first-hand important historical landmarks, including the Dachau concentration camps, the bunkers on the beaches of Normandy, and the site of the original Globe eater in London. Students who decide not to take Advanced Placement history courses also have new choices. In tenth grade, students take US History in the fall, focusing specifically on the Constitution and Reconstruction, two central themes to early

Gone are the textbooks of old; the bookshelves in the Holderness history department are filled instead with a variety of opinions and perspectives that invite students to answer their own questions and form their own observations.

US history. In the spring, however, students get to choose from a number of electives, including 20th Century America rough Film; A Bigger Government: e Great Depression and the New Deal; America in the ’50s and ’60s; and e American Civil War. “It lifts my heart,” says Peter. “Years ago, one of my favorite students used to stop by my office and say she was headed to ‘White Man’s History.’ at’s changing; there are now a number of options and a variety of perspectives that not only teach the facts but give students the chance to weigh divergent world views, thinking and persevering through difficult material and complicated issues.” It’s curriculum that supports those existential questions that Peter finds the most interesting, that if done well will support students not just when they study history, but when they become global citizens, caring neighbors, and life-long learners. •



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Holderness Speakers Share an Outside Perspective Holderness School is fortunate every year to have a range of speakers on campus, who share their stories and treat not just the students, but the faculty and staff, to a range of profound and often unexpected perspectives. Below we share with you just a few of the visitors we hosted this spring. hugh herr “People are not disabled; technology is disabled.” After a terrible climbing accident at the age of 17, Hugh Herr, PhD lost both his legs below his knees; he is now the head of the Biomechatronics Research Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Mit) Media Lab. A modern-era bionic man, Hugh is an associate professor in Mit’s Program in Media Arts and Sciences and in the Harvard-Mit Division of Health Sciences and Technology. His impact on the field of bionics and providing hope for those who suffer from amputations and degenerative diseases is growing every day. Hugh has a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Mit and he earned his PhD in biophysics from Harvard University. He has published widely in the field of rehabilitation science, has more than 40 patents related to assistive devices, and has collected numerous awards and grants. Photograph by David Gato/Alamy Stock Photo.

devi lockwood “Listening to stories is a form of activism. Listening builds empathy, and empathy is a powerful tool to dismantle apathy. It becomes harder to ignore a problem if we hear the voice of someone who is impacted.” Devi Lockwood is part journalist, part adventurer, part environmental activist. Since graduating from Harvard University in 2014, she has traveled all over the world recording people’s stories about climate change and water; so far she has visited Fiji, Tuvalu, New Zealand, Australia, ailand, Laos, Cambodia, Qatar, Morocco, the UK, Canada, China, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. Her goal is to ultimately record 1,001 stories. In addition to recording stories, Devi has found other ways to contribute to the environmental movement. According to her website, Devi’s journey began with the September 21, 2014 People’s Climate March in New York City. In November 2016 she attended the UN climate talks in Morocco as a youth delegate with SustainUS. Devi is one of 1,000 talents who were selected to attend uNLEasH 2017, an innovation lab focusing on the Sustainable Development Goals. Devi’s writing has been published in e New York Times, e Guardian, Cosmopolitan, Bicycling Magazine, Storyscape, BOAAT, and Gulf Coast.



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mike veny “e stigma surrounding mental health is a three-part cycle that starts with shame. You feel ashamed about your issues or you love someone and feel ashamed about their issues. e shame leads to silence. You don’t talk about it. e silence leads to sabotage, social injustice, selfdestructive behavior, and if you’re not careful, suicide. Listen again. Stigma starts with shame. Shame leads to silence and silence leads to sabotage, social injustice, self-destructive behavior, and suicide. e key to transforming shame is to figure out what the opposite of shame is. e opposite of shame is pride and honor. We have to learn how to take pride in who we are and to not let social stigma and shame silence us.” Mike Veny is one of America’s leading speakers on mental health. In 2017, Mike was awarded the PM360 ELitE Award, which recognizes the top 100 most influential people in the healthcare industry. His work tackles topics such as suicide prevention, mental health, and overall wellness while maintaining a tone that is geared towards progress and helping individuals understand and work with one another more effectively.

william d. “Bro” adams ’65 “Consider the experience of Robert Rubin, former Chairman of Goldman Sachs and Secretary of the Treasury under President Bill Clinton. Writing several weeks ago in e New York Times, Rubin noted that his most important intellectual experiences during his undergraduate years at Harvard came not in economics or finance, but in the philosophy department. Philosophy taught him skepticism and perspective, which were crucial to his success in business and government…I like [Rubin’s story] because it underscores the importance of breadth of mind and understanding, which will prove to be among your most important and consequential assets. And I like it because it runs so perfectly against the grain of so much current thinking about education, which overestimates the professional value of the technical disciplines and underestimates the professional value of the liberal arts.” William D. “Bro” Adams graduated from Holderness in 1965 and served as the commencement speaker for the Class of 2018. A Vietnam veteran as well as a leader for various educational organizations, Bro is the former president of Colby College and the former director of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Now serving as a senior fellow at the Mellon Foundation, it is easy to say that Bro has had a transformative effect on the American educational and intellectual landscape.



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Gifts of Art for Inspiration

John ’62 and Gretchen Swift at the gallery opening featuring their collection of ceramics and other two-dimensional pieces

Imagine that your passion is ceramics—molding clay into infinite shapes and intricate designs, mastering the chemistry of glazes brought to life through fire, discovering the vast possibilities of light and color and pattern. Imagine now that you have the opportunity to learn from master potters, from those who have spent a lifetime shaping clay and refining techniques. Perhaps this imagined world is not entirely possible, as many of the best potters are no longer around to share their ideas, but for Holderness students the next best thing is possible due to the generous gifts of two families—not just for ceramics students but for students studying a variety of artistic media. e first gift this spring was from John Swift ’62 and his wife Gretchen. e collection includes 50 pieces of art (mostly ceramics but other media as well) from close to 20 artists (including John), more than 60 art books, and more than 40 catalogues from the Pucker Gallery in Boston, MA.


Most notable in the Swift’s collection are the pieces by former Japanese national living treasure, Shoji Hamada; prominent 20th century British potter, Bernard Leach; glaze specialist, Brother omas Bezanson; and many contemporary internationally recognized masters in clay like Hideaki Miyamura, Ken Matusaki, Norman Lansing, Phil Rodgers, Tatsuzo Shimaoka, and Kang Hyo Lee. The two-dimensional work in their collection is highlighted by European landscape drawing master Gunnar Norrman, along with individual works by 19th century French artists, Honore Daumier and Georges Rouault. Also included are a pair of works on paper by American wood engraver and former Holderness faculty member Herbert Waters. Rounding out the collection are multiple examples of John’s own ceramic and printmaking creativity. “As we added to our collection over the years, we wanted works that gave us excitement, peace, and joy,” say the Swifts. “Also, we


bought works that were created with a variety of techniques, from which we could learn.” at pleasure and those lessons can now be passed on to Holderness students; pieces of the Swift collection will be on display throughout campus as well as be available to classes for closer guided studies. In addition to being an alumnus of Holderness School, John, and Gretchen, have both taught at Holderness. John joined the faculty at Holderness in 2005 after a career as an academic administrator and then a ceramicist. He initially just wanted to donate pallets of materials and his ceramic equipment to the school, but he soon realized he had a chance to “give back to a school that had given [him] a great deal some 40 years earlier.” Even luckier for Holderness, Gretchen Swift, a talented quilter, also became involved with the school. Until his retirement in 2007, John taught four classes, operated the ceramic studio, managed advisees and was a full participant, along with Gretchen, in the life of the school. “The existing teaching collection at our school has served our classrooms and studios well,” says Director of the Edwards Art Gallery Franz Nicolay. “But the Swifts generous gift has substantially elevated the profile of its contents. The Swift’s dedication to, and legacy of, living with art for inspiration, will continue for generations to come. Students can become their best, by seeing and working with the best, as guidance.” e second gift to Holderness this spring came from the family of Herb Waters, one of the world’s most accomplished wood engravers. Presented to Holderness by Herb’s adopted son Gil Tyler, the collection includes more than 350 prints (primarily Herb’s but also those of other artists), copies of Herb’s typewritten notes about his woodblock prints (how he made them, what inspired each piece, etc.), and a portrait of Herb made by John Hatch, an art professor at uNH for more than 30 years.

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A second collection of artwork was gifted by Gil Tyler and features the work of Herb Waters. aBove left: “Brook and Melting Snow,” a wood engraving by Herb Waters; aBove right: Herb and Bertha Waters in the 1950s or ’60s.

Herb, and his wife Bertha, were also faculty members at Holderness. Herb taught art for Roosevelt’s Works Progress Administration through the Great Depression, worked in a Providence shipyard through World War II, and then joined the Holderness faculty in 1947. At Holderness, Herb taught art, helping to establish the curriculum on which the current vibrant and diverse program is built. While Herb and Bertha finished their teaching years at West Virginia’s Alderson-Broaddus College, they kept their home in New Hampshire and maintained strong ties with the school. “Herb’s time on our faculty marks the beginning of the modern art department at Holderness,” says Franz. “He holds a special place in our hearts, and we’re honored to be the main repository for his work.” Herb spent a lifetime mastering wood engraving. His prints of New England landscapes and architectural details can be found in the permanent collections at the Library of Congress, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, the

Smithsonian, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Herb was also recognized in 1996 by then New Hampshire Governor Steve Merrill as a “Living Treasure.” For the Holderness community, the notebooks in which Herb maintained records about each woodblock are invaluable for providing historical context and artistic insight. Herb kept meticulous notes, including the number of prints that were made from each woodblock, the type of paper he used, and the number of woodblocks used. He also took the time to record his struggles and his triumphs. Take, for instance, a woodblock titled “Brook and Melting Snow.” e print, he writes, is of the brook beside his house on Mad River Road in Campton, NH: “In 1975 I spent several months working on a wood engraving of a West Virginia swinging (suspension) bridge with the river below and surrounding hill. is did not turn out very well, to my vast disappointment, and when we returned to New Hampshire in the spring of 1976 and I saw our

brook rushing between the banks of melting snow, I decided I had better attempt an engraving of a subject utterly familiar to me for years, particularly the brook itself with patterns of swirling water. I took a six-foot step ladder down by the stream and drew, sitting on top of that. e higher elevation gave a better perspective of the pools and small waterfalls looking upstream…e three foreground trees are (from left to right) maple, yellow birch, ash. e ash tree in the center was a particular challenge because it had not a single branch, and if it were to be interesting, that interest would have to rely entirely on texture and pattern…I felt this was one of my best wood engravings and deserved a larger life, so printed a second edition. e block warped somewhat, and I did not complete the number signed on the early prints.” To examine first-hand, to touch, to reach back in history and hear the words of an artist—these are the gifts of the Swifts and of Gil Tyler for which Holderness School and generations of students will be forever grateful. •


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The Power of Mentoring

Tawn Tomasi ’18 during his senior thesis research trip to Uganda, where he was able to experience first-hand the impact of volunteer health professionals in developing countries

by saraH bartoN As the director of the Senior esis Program, Sarah Barton has the distinct privilege of witnessing changes in the twelfth-graders as they dig deeper into their thesis research, taking ownership of their learning. Sarah’s reflection below highlights one student’s transformative experience. is year, Tawn Tomasi ’18 readied himself for life beyond Holderness. I watched as he learned how hard it is to pose questions with heft to them, as he learned that research is messy, and as he learned that contacting adults in the professional world can be scary. Although Tawn is

an exceptional person, one with moral fortitude in spades and goodness to his toes, at times he doubted his strength of character and even questioned his plan to one day be a radiologist. All of this came about through his work on his senior thesis. is bright, curious, diligent and focused senior dug deep into his weaknesses and into areas of himself he’d never explored, and with the support of a remarkable mentor, Tawn ultimately emerged knowledgeable, proud and excited for the next challenges in his future. Senior esis is perhaps the first opportunity many of our students have to truly own their learning. A primary goal of the course is for twelfth graders to engage deeply with resources


and reach out to experts for interviews and for support in planning the 40-hour experiential element of their research. For many, it is these connections with adults in the field that are most influential to their research. e generosity of adults even loosely connected to Holderness is dramatic. Over the last few years, hundreds of Holderness alumni, families, and friends of the school have offered their help to our seniors and provided handson experiences from the medical field to mountaineering. ese enormously enriching opportunities are often coupled with offers for housing, meals, and follow-up support. Lastly, the number of mentors who adjust their schedules to attend seniors’ end-of-year presentations is downright moving. It is through the powerful connections between twelfth-graders and their mentors that the Senior esis teachers see the clear shift in students from extrinsic motivation to intrinsic. Seniors move from dutifully reading and annotating sources to charging forward through the challenges of their work because they want to and because they truly feel responsible for pushing their research forward and sharing it with others. For Tawn, his pivotal moment came after writing an email to a radiologist at the University of Vermont (uVM). Previously, he’d fallen short of any success with a frustratingly large number of emails to people connected to his Essential Question: “How can volunteer health professionals impact developing countries?” Fortunately, uVM’s Dr. Kristen DeStigter not only responded to Tawn’s email but this past March, brought him to Uganda to experience first-hand what radiology work in rural Uganda can be. As his teacher, I had the good fortune of witnessing Tawn’s struggles during his March Experience through the daily video journals he sent to me. e first few days showed the open, excited student I know, but as time passed and the challenges began to weigh on him, in his

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The Senior Thesis program continues to thrive because of the number of professionals who continue to say yes to Holderness students when they ask for interviews, internships, and hands-on experiences. clockwise, from top: Ryan Houx and Quinn Houseman both spent time at Vineyard Vines this spring, studying small business growth in a digital world; Kathy Liech traveled home (to Kenya), where she studied women’s health education; Bee McLaughlin also traveled home (to Alaska), where she was studying the challenges facing rural Alaskan education.

late night reviews of the day, Tawn showed signs of exhaustion, questioning, and even defeat. Rubbing his temples one night, he said, “Dr. DeStigter is a superhero. I don’t think this work is for me.” He documented his experience with remarkable Ugandan and American role models and marveled, eyes wide, at the strength and generosity of his new heroes. By the end of his time in Uganda, Tawn had rounded the corner. He was a more confident, realistic, and determined young man. He felt deeply the responsibility to continue the work he’d started and to open the conversation up to his community back at home. On the morning of Tawn’s presentation in May, there was Dr. DeStigter, having taken a day off of work to sit in the front-row seat Tawn had saved for her. I wouldn’t be surprised if Tawn’s future is headed towards radiology or perhaps supporting volunteer work in developing countries in some other way, but Tawn, like Cooper Jay ’18 who researched the future of self-driving cars, and Bella Smith ’18 who explored how baking can relieve stress, and Aldie Anderson ’18 who wondered about the sustainability of oyster farming, would not have reached the point where they stood in May, proudly presenting their theses, without the inspiration and guid-

ance of their mentors. Because of this shared work, they’ve changed. ey know that challenges and vulnerability are hurdles they want and need to climb and that collaboration, gen-

erosity and grit are essential to forward movement. •



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The Accreditation Cycle: An Update by suzaNNE dEwEy Head of School Phil Peck often talks about the value of critical reflection. We are fortunate to have a delineated process that enables Holderness to experience a two-year reflective endeavor that fosters improvement, future planning, and enhanced collegiality. Holderness is in the midst of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEasC) accreditation process, an examination that occurs every decade and involves a twoyear evaluation. e main goal is centered on alignment with established and research-driven NEasC standards, intending to ensure a valuable and thoughtful student experience. NEasC provides a framework for schools to conduct a self-assessment and then invites a panel of educators from other schools to spend an intensive site visit providing input and feedback. NEasC defines the process in three distinct phases.

Reflection: A Comprehensive Self-Evaluation For the 2017-18 academic period, Holderness created 15 committees, one for each NEasC standard. e committees, comprised of 5–7 members from all areas of the school met several times throughout the year. Over 80 employees participated in this first phase of the accreditation. While each committee could invite “an expert” into their meeting, the organizing committee chairs (new Director of Teaching and Learning Kelsey Berry and Director of Administrative and Strategic Initiatives Andy Herring) established standard committee chairs from other areas so it would be a learning experience that would encourage expanded perspectives. Additionally, several surveys were conducted to contribute data to the self-review process. Students, parents, faculty, administrators, employees, and alumni were all surveyed. Each committee was tasked with examining the data for their standard (in most cases they


Some findings from the Accreditation Survey There were over 200 alumni who responded to the survey, and while not equal in representation, there was a critical mass for each decade. Not surprisingly, because of our history, the gender split favored males—70%.



believe their school experience prepared them for leadership.

agree that the school experience related during the admission process matched their actual experience.




agree that the school’s mission stays with them today.

continue as learners in some capacity.

actively work in the service of others.

relied on the survey responses), interviewing people involved in that realm (“the experts”), and/or determining evidence to support or refute the standard. Once this evaluation was completed, each committee wrote a report and offered recommendations for their standard. e committees also, using NEasC’s guide, determined how well the standards were met. It was then up to the organizing chairs to assemble all of the material into one report. e final report from this process was completed over the summer and will now be available for the review process.

Review: Examination and Consideration of the SelfEvaluation by Others In October, a visiting team comprised of professionals from other schools—peer educators and administrators—will conduct a multi-day site visit. e visiting team will review the selfevaluation, observe, interview, and identify areas of strength and weakness, making their own set


of recommendations to help the school find alignment with the standards. e visiting team will then make their own report.

Renewal: From Accreditation to Strategic Planning Next, an assessment of the visiting team’s report and recommendations is conducted, and an implementation plan is designed in response to those recommendations. At this point, Holderness will utilize the findings from the accreditation process to establish a strategic planning process, prioritizing recommendations and ensuring that the school is constantly improving. ere is a process that NEasC engages for schools that do not meet the standards, but Holderness does not expect to have any compliance concerns. ere is still much work to be done for the accreditation, and a lot of good learning will occur along the way. e end result will be an intentional plan for the future of Holderness School. •


The Fight Against BroScience Google “broscience,” and the Urban Dictionary—a crowdsourced online dictionary for slang words and phrases, operating under the motto “Define Your World”—will tell you, broscience is “word-of-mouth knowledge passed off as fact, primarily among bodybuilders and weightlifters; generally spouted most by guys who have used loads of steroids and are huge, have no idea what is happening to their bodies and then share that same cluelessness with others.” In a world where all information is just a Google search away, it is sometimes difficult to distinguish fact from fiction, or fad from science-based research. at’s where Strength and Conditioning Coach Morgan Llewelyn, Assistant Athletic Director Chrissy Lushefski, and Athletic Trainer Nick Laurence come in. roughout the year, and particularly over the summer, these members of the Holderness athletic department, are working hard to give students the facts they need to train hard, stay healthy, and achieve their athletic goals. Throughout last spring, Chrissy and Nick began their nutrition campaign with the Blue Plate Facts at sit-down dinner. Since attendance at dinner on Tuesdays and Thursdays is mandatory, Nick and Chrissy took advantage of this captive audience to share nutrition information about each evening meal. With two or three facts recorded on paper handouts at each dinner table, the Blue Plate Facts were a conversation-starter and a great way for Nick and Chrissy to build students’ nutritional knowledge. From information about serving sizes—a three-ounce piece of steak is about the size of a deck of cards—to details about vitamins and minerals found in their food—one serving of salmon has 17 grams of protein and contains omega-three fatty acids and vitamin D—the Blue Plate Facts are helping to educate Holderness Bulls so that their bodies are ready to respond during athletic practices and competitions. e Blue Plate Facts are also

challenging students to learn about the health benefits of foods they’ve perhaps never even tried. Take for example Quinoa, a South American grain that is gluten free and is a complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids. Nick and Chrissy are also using social media to their advantage. In early spring, they invited the Holderness community to follow them on Instagram at blueplatefeed, an Instagram story that “highlights nutrition at Holderness School.” While most of the posts record the healthy choices students have made in the dining hall, some go beyond students’ typical meals. In one post from May 19, followers can read about muktuk—a traditional food made of whale skin and blubber that Bee McLaughlin ’18 encountered during her Senior esis experience in Alaska, and by the way, is a good source of vitamins C and D! “We’re off to a good start,” says Nick. “And we hope to continue to build and expand nutritional resources all over campus so students can make healthy and informed decisions.” Meanwhile, Morgan Llewelyn is fighting broscience on the strength and conditioning front. While he has helped many students develop individual training programs both during the school year and during the summer, he sees the connections between all athletic endeavors and their training needs. “It is important that we bridge the gap from strength in the weight room to strength on the field of competition,” says Morgan. “Almost all sports involve closed-chain activities (standing with a foot planted) that require balance and coordination as well as unilateral movements and twisting. Further, most athletes will spend much of their competition time with one foot in contact with the ground. [e Holderness Strength and Conditioning] program will address these specific needs of the athlete by forcing them to balance their bodies in various ways in most lifts.”

An Instagram post from this spring: “A hungry Paul Menard ’18 sent this in from brunch recently: ‘Meat, starch, grains, some milk for calcium and fresh fruit and OJ for some vitamin C. I’ll be fueled up all day!’ Did you know that watermelon is an excellent source of vitamins A and D? #BullsDoBrunch”

But perhaps one of the most important parts of Morgan’s Strength and Conditioning philosophy is written in the first sentence of his purpose statement: “Our purpose is to help all of our athletes reach their potential…” Spend time in the weight room and it is clear these aren’t just hollow words. He is willing, and eager, to work with varsity athletes as well as with students who may not even consider themselves to be the least bit athletic. He takes the time to find the appropriate exercises for every student and makes sure they have the knowledge to continue training on their own. In addition to his own words of wisdom, Morgan makes sure to share professional, wellresearched articles with students so they can go deeper and learn more if they are interested. It is important to him that students don’t just take his word for it; in the fight against broscience, he encourages curiosity and the pursuit of real science. •



Kelly Qian Skates for Taiwan

Kelly Qian ’19 accepting a trophy after her team’s victory at the 2018 Women’s World Cup of Asia

Kelly Qian ’19 fell in love with hockey during her freshman year at Holderness when her best friend Lauren Steele ’19, an extraordinary hockey player from Prince Edward Island, took her to the opening of Holderness School’s new hockey arena. It was only Kelly’s second time skating ever, but she immediately fell in love with it. “In the following weeks,” says Kelly,“I was always watching Lauren dangling like Crosby while I was still trying to learn how to skate and handle the puck. at whole winter I went to every open stick and puck with Lauren.” Sidney Crosby, by the way, is a Canadian hockey player who skates for the Pittsburgh Penguins. During her first and second years at Holderness, Kelly played for the Superstars, the girls’ JV hockey team, so named because of their infectious enthusiasm and their reputation around campus for being a fun, low-pressure team that loves playing hockey. “Kelly was a great addition to the Superstars,” says Head Coach Elizabeth Wolf. “She worked hard at every practice, showed up


early, and stayed on the ice after practice every chance she got. It was so awesome to watch her improve so quickly!” In the summer between her ninth- and tenth-grade years, Kelly trained at home at the Shanghai Mercedes Benz Arena with a local coach. One day after practice, Kelly’s coach asked her if she wanted to scrimmage with some of the boys over the weekend. When she turned up to the game, she says a lot of people were surprised. “It is very rare to see female hockey players in China,” says Kelly. “In my time in Shanghai, I have only seen two or three girls playing hockey.” Most girls in China train for figure skating, she says, since it is seen as more elegant and feminine. “e goalie for the other team,” says Kelly, “was a 10-year-old boy who plays for the Malaysia Youth Team. His mom approached my mom, telling her how surprising it was to see me, a girl, playing hockey with the boys.” It was the boy’s mother who suggested that Kelly try out for the National Chinese Taipei Women’s Hockey Team, a new team that planned to make its debut at the 2018 International Ice Hockey Federation (iiHF) Women’s Challenge Cup of Asia. After a long series of tryouts and late night practices (from 10:30–midnight), Kelly was selected to join the U18 team. e sport of hockey has been gaining traction in China ever since Beijing won the bid for the 2022 Winter Olympics in 2015. Currently, Chinese hockey is less aggressive, but the passion that people feel for the sport is the same. And although it’s still a relatively unknown sport in many parts of the country, the NHL is trying to expose Asia to hockey through showcasing games in Shanghai. Last year, for instance, they brought over the Los Angeles Kings and the Vancouver Maple Leafs to play at the Mercedes Benz Arena. During the 2017–18 season, Kelly played for Holderness School’s varsity team. “I asked Kelly at the beginning of the year if she wanted


to play varsity, knowing she had this big international tourney at the end of the year,” says Athletic Director and Varsity Hockey Coach Rick Eccleston ’92. “Kelly accepted the challenge and worked hard all year. She also had help from her friends; Vanessa Maldonado ’18 would spent the first 15 minutes of every practice with her, teaching her drills and working on her skating. I was impressed by how our team made it their mission to get Kelly ready.” With new skills mastered, Kelly headed home in March to play with the National Chinese Taipei Women’s U-18 Hockey Team. During their first game in the 2018 iiHF Women’s Challenge Cup of Asia held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Chinese Taipei faced ailand. With Kelly playing right forward, the Chinese Taipei won the game 5–3 and went on to win two additional matches against the New Zealand women’s under-18 team (4-1) and Singapore’s women’s team (12-1). Chinese Taipei won the tournament, ahead of secondplaced New Zealand. “e whole experience taught me that hard work will pay off,” says Kelly. “We didn’t just win the trophy overnight; we all put our blood and sweat into the Ice Hockey Women’s Challenge Cup of Asia. Going into the tournament, other countries looked down on our team, but through this competition, we showed them who the real champions are.” “It is amazing to know that I am not only representing my country, but I am also representing my school on the world stage,” continues Kelly.“I decided to leave my Holderness crest on my helmet because it is a reminder of where it all began for me. I am grateful for what Holderness has done for me as a person, allowing me to leave my comfort zone.” In May 2018, the iiHF announced that Chinese Taipei would enter a team into the iiHF World Women’s U18 Championships for 2019. While the team has yet to be chosen, Kelly says without a doubt she will try out. •

update: current faculty and staff

Saying Farewell With Mutual Respect and Admiration

Nancy Thurrell with members of the Health Center team—Joanne Wernig and Carol Dopp

During the 2003 construction of the new health center, students had to visit Nurse Nancy in Marshall Dormitory. She and school physician Viking Hedberg, MD, MPH made the best of the temporary circumstances and set up shop for the year in the rooms of the singlestory, shingle structure that had outlived its purpose for decades. It was drafty and quirky but for Nurse Nancy and Viking, it was only one year. ere is one night in Marshall, however, that Nancy won’t ever forget. As has always been the case when students are sick, meals are delivered to them from Weld in a cardboard box and Tupperware containers. On one particular snowy evening, as Nurse Nancy received the box of food from a helpful student, she slipped on a patch of ice. e boxes, their contents—and the utensils balanced precariously on top—fell with her. In the chaos that followed, Nancy discovered a knife had gone through her hand. When Viking and Nancy began their careers at Holderness in the late 1990s, the health center operated out of one room in the basement of Livermore. “Private conversations were held in the bathroom,” recalls Nancy, “and we had one room for isolating students who were contagious; and that one room was also the entrance into the building for the Livermore housekeeping staff!”

Nancy also remembers the students who would plan their “sick days” with their roommates. “Because students got to go back to their rooms if they were sick, they would sometimes take advantage of the situation,” she says. “ere was just no way to really monitor who was truly sick and who had a mild cold and could still attend classes.” In 2003, with the construction of the new health center, the days of hanging out in the dorms ended. With four new rooms in which students could be cared for and observed, students no longer wanted to be sick. e new rooms also helped significantly limit the quick spread of contagious diseases. “Viking has a master’s in public health and was able to focus a different lens on the health of our community,” says Nancy. “He was instrumental in seeing to the isolation of contagious diseases and improving the overall health of everyone on campus.” For her part, Nancy took advantage of the transition to make sure that the new health center would be certified by the state of New Hampshire. “Because we are a private institution, we weren’t mandated to be licensed by the state back in the ’90s,” says Nancy. “But the certification ensures a high level of care, and we now go through annual inspections and continue to uphold the state’s standards.” During their twenty years together, Nurse Nancy and Viking worked as a team to provide a level of care that was much improved but at the same time continued the kindness and compassion of previous generations. “Nancy’s integrity and the trust we have been able to have in each other has allowed us to deliver a high level of care,” Viking says. Nancy agrees. “Despite the knife incident, we’ve had an amazing working relationship,” she says. “Viking just doesn’t miss stuff and loves what he does.” is era in the health center, however, has come to a close. Dr. Hedberg is off to Concord Hospital where he will be working full time as

a pediatrician in the family health center; Nurse Nancy will continue to work at Holderness through March of 2019 but has stepped down as the center’s director. As with the last transition, Holderness School is using this opportunity to rethink the healthcare and wellness of the community. What does 24/7 care look like? Is it feasible to provide healthcare to the employees of the school as well as the students? What electronic medical system will allow for the most efficient and effective care for a community in which coaches, faculty, and dorm parents all act on occasion as parents and caregivers? It’s common knowledge that when a blunt object goes through a limb or torso, it should stay there. e number one rule is not to pull it out without a doctor on hand. But in that moment, when Nurse Nancy sat in that puddle of ice on the floor of Marshall, she forgot her training and immediately pulled the knife back out. At Speare Memorial Hospital, they discovered she had nicked an artery and needed the kind of attention and observation she was used to giving to others. “Much to my embarrassment, I had to spend the night,” Nurse Nancy explains. “But what I remember most is the kindness of Viking. He came to visit me, even though he wasn’t on duty. He brought me a change of clothes, and if I remember correctly, my daughter spent the night at his house.” Nancy also remembers the next day, when Viking let her borrow a shirt because her bandaged hand was the size of a boxing glove. eir care for each other, and the care they extended throughout the Holderness community, has been invaluable and their presence will be missed immensely. We are grateful for their continued support, even as they depart for other adventures. •


update: current faculty and staff

A Reflection on Holderness learns™

Kevin Mattingly and Holderness faculty on day 2 of Holderness learns, brainstorming ways to promote well-being and mindfulness on campus

by NigEL FurLoNgE is essay was first published in e Lamp, Holderness School’s online forum dedicated to sharing ideas and celebrating the successes of teaching and learning at Holderness School. Nigel Furlonge wrote this reflection in his final days as associate head before transitioning to his new position as principal of the upper school at the Ethical Culture Fieldston School. We are a good school. How can we be better? And how can we create time and space to think together in informed ways about this question? Holderness can grow and remain dynamic only if we create sustainable opportunities for the faculty to learn, collaborate, and create. As we know from the oft-cited work of Ellie Drago-Severson and others, it is both important and possible to sustain professional learning throughout an adult’s career. Further, we know that students thrive in schools that sustain teacher learning. We also know that the most optimal moments to dream, question, design,


and experiment come when we have time away from what Ted Sizer calls “keeping school.” ese questions, findings, realities, and the needs they point to for professional learning are what inspired us to launch Holderness LEarNs. From June 4–7, our community gathered to affirm and stretch our thinking, to collaborate, and to reflect on what kind of school Holderness is and can be. Holderness LEarNs was designed to create formative opportunities for collaboration, curiosity, and creativity among the faculty, centered on the art and science of teaching and learning. e institute is Holderness School’s in-house, end-of-year think tank, a manifestation and practice of a professional learning community that provides each faculty member the opportunity to engage in important professional growth work with colleagues at the start of the summer. is timing allows for participants to extend collaboration with colleagues into the summer and/or to reflect on and implement elements of their learning when making plans for their work in the upcoming


school year. is timing, then, increases the possibility that adult learning will impact student learning. e focus of the work during Holderness LEarNs grew from the learning needs and wants of the adults in the community. During faculty and department meetings, through accreditation conversations, and on surveys completed by the faculty, they indicated what they wanted to spend time learning. e LEarNs framework, designed by Nicole Furlonge and informed by research-based findings concerning what it means for adults and students alike to learn in an enduring way, is integral to the Holderness LEarNs institute. e LEarNs framework also has informed teaching and learning practices at Holderness School over the last few years. A comprehensive framework, it highlights six interconnected habits that are integral to adult and student learning: r ListENiNg: How can we learn to listen in ways that open us up to learning, to understanding each other better, to enhancing communication, to providing effective feedback, and to keeping a pulse on the ecosystem of our school? r ENgagiNg: In what ways can we lean in to key issues that our school and other schools are grappling with? What learning goals have you set for yourself? How do those goals live in relation to the strategic priorities and mission of the school? What resources— persons and materials—might you consult or have access to in order to help you work on individual and school goals? r askiNg: In what ways can we be curious and ask questions that deepen the work we do? r rEFLECtiNg: Since reflection is essential to learning, how might we pause—at brief moments during the institute, during a class period or meeting, or in the midst of a work day—to take time to reflect on our learning? How might we redesign meetings and learning opportunities to allow for intentional reflection? What are you

update: current faculty and staff

learning? What are your questions? What are you noticing? What do you want to try to put into practice? What are some triumphs? What would you like to do differently? r NEtworkiNg: How might professional learning opportunities provide ways for colleagues to connect on questions about practice that they hold in common with each other? How might we reach beyond our immediate context to connect with thought partners in person or via online networks and platforms that will keep our learning current? r sHariNg: How might you share your learning with others? How might you share feedback with colleagues and students that takes into consideration your new learning? Members from across the community— instructional faculty alongside members of the Advancement Office, Admissions Team, Communications Team, and Business Office— were able to connect with thought partners to stretch their understanding in four focus areas. e first day of Holderness LEarNs opened with Grace A. Chen, from Vanderbilt University, who prompted us to think about how the experiences of Asian-American students at Holderness confirm and complicate the experiences of Asian-Americans across the American educational landscape. Rebecca Nyquist Baelen, from the University of Pennsylvania, facilitated our deep dive into mindfulness on day two. How might we promote well-being and mindfulness strategies for everyone throughout the school? e institute shifted gears on the third day when Kevin Mattingly, a member of the Holderness School Board of Trustees and a professor at Columbia University, presented research on the relationship between giving effective feedback in an academic context and metacognition (how learners think about how they learn). Finally, Efrat Furst from Harvard University helped us unpack the efficacy of retrieval practices

designed to increase long-term, as opposed to short-term, memory and enduring learning. After spending a challenging, engaging, and dynamic three and a half days in deep discourse with colleagues and thought partners, I walked away from the first year of Holderness LEarNs thinking that it was the best last moment as a faculty member at Holderness that I could have imagined: breaking metaphorical bread in a sustained professional learning community, one that is willing to reach within

Or, perhaps more precisely, what I think of as a second science. If the first science is mastery of our discipline (the arts, English, history, language, math, science, theology and religious studies), then the second science is a robust understanding of how students learn well, how research around neuroscience is changing the educational landscape, and then how that research can be applied to educational practices. This “second science” can be daunting at first, especially since most educators come to

The first year of Holderness LEARNS was the best last moment that I could have imagined: breaking metaphorical bread in a sustained professional learning community, one that is willing to reach within and beyond itself to promote and engage in learning informed by best practices. — nigel furlonge and beyond itself to promote and engage in learning informed by best practices. Whether in plenary sessions, small group meetings, thinking and reflecting individually using journal prompts, or engaging in dinner conversations with our thought partners, I was reminded of how critical it is for adults in any environment to spend time in dialogue about their values, vision, and shared goals outside the business of the technical details of running a school. is learning is particularly important if the school is seeking adaptive changes, rather than technical ones. ere is both an art and science to teaching and learning. e art is often signified by the nuanced relationships teachers cultivate with students. e adults at Holderness cultivate these relationships far, far better than what I’ve witnessed in most schools, and certainly as well as any school I know. But there is a science, too.

teaching because of their love for their respective disciplines and their desire to “pay it forward” towards building lasting mentoring relationships with their students. Most don’t think about neuroscience, how students learn, of educational-based best practices. Yet unpacking how students learn effectively is precisely the inquiry that has defined the educational landscape over at least the past decade. I’m honored to have been a part of this latest iteration of the professional learning community that is Listening deeply, Engaging with one another, Asking thought-provoking questions, Reflecting on those questions, Networking with one another and with colleagues from peer schools, and, finally, Sharing a vision, thinking, and passion with their students, for whom all of this work and this play is for. •



update: former faculty and staff

Donald Hector Henderson: In Memoriam May 6, 1924–May 24, 2018 by riCk CarEy “He was the best date I ever had,” said Pat Henderson in 2001. “He was full of ideas about things I never knew about, and he changed my direction in life.” Pat was speaking to Holderness School Today (HST)about the date who became her husband, a man frankly surprised to find himself at Middlebury College in the post-war 1940s— and to be so full of ideas. Donald Hector Henderson had grown up in hardscrabble Berlin, NH, where his father worked in one of the paper mills, and where Don expected to work himself after high school. But he also grew up skiing—skiing so very well, in fact, that he was offered a scholarship to Syracuse University. “I had taken just vocational-track courses in high school, and there was no hope, academically, for me at Syracuse,” Don told HST. “I didn’t know how to do the work at that level.” It was 1942, and instead Don joined the US Army, where his skill on skis made him a member of the famed 10th Mountain Division. He took part in the invasion of Kiska Island in the Aleutians, and later suffered shrapnel wounds— these ending his military career—during a campaign in Italy’s Apennine Mountains. A number of his buddies in the 10th Mountain, however, had been Middlebury College students, and they promised to smooth a path for him if he wanted to spend his G.I. Bill money there. Don took that path, was accepted at Middlebury, and—sure enough— found himself on the cusp of flunking out by the end of his freshman year. “So that summer,” Don said, “I got hold of a dictionary, went to the library, and came home with a tall stack of books.” ese were classics of history, science, and religious thought, and were attacked with the same zeal that Don had brought to the ski slopes. During that summer,


and over his succeeding years at Middlebury, Don remade himself not merely into a successful student; rather a genuine scholar, someone aflame with the joys and possibilities of the life of the mind, of things he never knew about— not to say a man who could charm a co-ed whose mind was equally lively and probing. e skiing, meanwhile, took care of itself. In 1948 Don was captain of the Middlebury ski team. He competed in all four events of that era—slalom, giant slalom, Nordic, and ski jumping—leading Middlebury to a national

jacked-up pickup truck. Anti-freeze for the truck was too expensive—so water was hauled from a local brook, and the radiator drained at the end of each day. e conditions were tough, but the coaching was world-class. “Holderness students rate A+ on the slopes,” headlined e New York Times in 1971. Indeed, from 1956 to 1984, each winter Olympics included at least one athlete coached by Don Henderson. And he served his country again as well: in 1964 Don was alpine coach of the US Olympic team, and during the

Happiness is not a destination. Happiness is an attitude, a way of looking at life, an understanding of our relationship to the universe and fellow humans. — don henderson championship and establishing himself as the most accomplished American skimeister of his generation. And then? Graduation—Cum Laude— marriage, and off to Harvard for a master’s in history. en to the University of London’s Institute of Historical Research for a doctorate. “Well, I did that for a year, and I got halfway through,” Don said. “But by then I knew I had to have a greater connection to the outdoors. Teaching at a boarding school with a ski team seemed like a great idea.” It seemed like a great idea to Don Hagerman too, who made young Mr. Henderson one of his first hires when he succeeded Edric Weld as head of Holderness School in 1951. e new guy was immediately charged with invigorating the ski program, and he did so, investing it with a momentum that it still enjoys today. Don’s first teams spent as much time bushwhacking as they did skiing, carving out on-campus ski slopes and Nordic trails, and building a ski jump. e rope tow on Cartwright Hill was run off the wheel of a


winter of 1969–70 head coach of the US World Cup team. And yet this school’s two Dons—the headmaster and the ski coach—could not have been more in agreement, and more adamant, that Holderness would not become a ski academy, nor be thought of as one. All students would play three sports; all athletes, no matter how Olympian, were students first. And as a member, and eventual chair, of the history department, Don Henderson was no less brilliant and innovative in the classroom. When he arrived in 1951, in fact, Don had been appalled by the school’s standard US history texts and curriculum, which he discarded. Instead, decades before it was fashionable, he brought American history’s formative texts into the classroom—the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, Lincoln’s speeches, etc.—all to be interpreted by the students themselves. Troubled by unfamiliar words, arcane language? Get a dictionary. “e first few years were difficult—lots of complaining, gnashing of teeth, and dire

update: former faculty and staff

prophecies of failure,” Don wrote in an article in the fall, 1987, HST. “But soon a pattern of eminent success began to emerge…To hear a 16-year-old boy say, ‘I believe that Charles Beard exaggerated his claims that the writers of the Constitution sought political control and special privileges for the upper classes,’ was a thrill enough to satisfy a teacher for a lifetime.” Of course Don had done so much gnashing of teeth during his own academic struggles that he knew exactly how to help the stragglers and ensure “eminent success.” He concluded that HST article with words that bear special resonance now in this era of fake news and social media echo chambers. “A healthy skepticism of all written (and oral) opinions develops a willingness to read further, to question, to probe,” Don wrote. “us, the US history course at Holderness became an intellectual training ground for not only further study in the real world of history, but also for a sound healthy approach to all of life’s problems.” Don himself was skeptical of the Holderness Board of Trustees’ choice of headmaster to replace the retiring Mr. Hagerman in 1977. e Rev. B.W. “Pete” Woodward was an Episcopal minister from Kansas, and Don was frankly concerned for the direction of the school—even after the new head unveiled a “Ski Kansas” t-shirt beneath his tie and buttondown. But Don and Pete quickly became allies in both the groundbreaking work of making Holderness co-educational and the stay-thecourse work of remaining a traditional liberal arts boarding school. And during the campus expansion and renovations of the next twenty years, Pete was particularly grateful for the ways his burden was eased as a development officer. “In the roster of Holderness greats such as Loys Wiles, Coach Hinman, Edric Weld, Don Hagerman, and Norm Walker, Don Henderson is at the top of the list,” said Pete. “For my part, I never really had to raise funds as headmaster. I simply went out and collected financial gifts made to the school because of the gratitude created in the hearts of all by Don and Pat Henderson.”

Don and Pat Henderson, circa 1985

at 1987 article Don wrote for HST was a valedictory piece, since that was his last year at Holderness. Naturally it was Pat’s as well—she who had been an admissions officer, the school’s first archivist, an occasional faculty member, and counselor and Mother Superior, as it were, to the school’s first female students. (Don had been no less welcoming, though he famously had trouble adapting the words with which he began each class—”Good morning, boys”—to the new circumstances.) In June of that same year, Don delivered a commencement speech that still rings down the years as one of Holderness’s formative texts, one that deeply informs its mission statement and values today. “Happiness is not a destina-

tion,” Don said from the podium. “Happiness is an attitude, a way of looking at life, an understanding of our relationship to the universe and fellow humans.” At the end he cited Robert Frost’s poem “Two Tramps in Mud Time”: “Yield who will to their separation,/ My object in living is to unite/ My avocation and my vocation/As my two eyes make one in sight./Only where love and need are one,/And the work is play for mortal stakes,/Is the deed ever really done/For Heaven and the future’s sakes.” Of course, Don Henderson had never yielded to such a separation. In coming to a New Hampshire boarding school with a ski team, he had not merely found a way to unite skiing,


update: former faculty and staff

scholarship, and the outdoors as his vocation— he had found an avocation twining and transcending all those in the teaching and coaching and mentoring of these sixteen-yearolds: youths who commanded such great love from him, whose needs were one with that love, and whose work at Holderness (their work, Don’s work) was indeed “play for mortal stakes.” In retirement Don and Pat shared a rambling Cape in Fairlee, VT, one with a tennis court they built themselves, and they shared days of friends, family, tennis, golf, cycling, swimming, hiking, gardening, bucking wood for the winter, and—during each of those winters—skiing: on most days for Pat, on every single day, no matter the weather, for Don. And of course they read—widely, voluminously, insatiably. Don threw himself into the independent study of foreign languages. Left to his own devices on a ski lift during a day too harsh for most, this son of a North Country mill worker entertained himself by describing the weather and alpine scenery in both French and German. Best of all, in his enduring ties to Holderness and his former students, Don kept teaching. “Don was a role model for me and for generations of Holderness students and colleagues,” said Head of School Phil Peck, who began as a junior member of Don’s history department. “He role modeled for us how to teach and learn, how to coach and learn, how to live a full life in every stage of his life. Everything he did was done with great joy: joy of learning, joy of working with adolescents, and joy for the outdoors and life.” Among the adolescents who basked in that joy was Tim Scott ’73—at Holderness a history student, a ski racer, and a two-year resident of the dorm on Mt. Prospect Road run by Don and Pat. In 2015, Tim anticipated this moment in writing as follows to the Holderness community: “When one gets to a certain age, it is increasingly common to gather and join in remembrance of friends and acquaintances in those always sad, and often sudden, days after

Don Henderson (standing in the back row, far right) with his ski team; date unknown

they are gone. ese tributes, of course, end up being not for them but for those who remain. I have long believed that sincere remembrances and appreciation should be shared at an earlier time when those people might actually hear and enjoy them.” So Tim acted on that belief before this sad day. He solicited alumni, and collected enough by way of memories and anecdotes—from people who, when young, had met a man full of ideas about things they never knew about, whose everyday life was a series of deeds “done for Heaven and the future’s sakes”—to plump out a booklet published that year: “A Living Tribute to Don and Pat Henderson.” What to choose by way of thrills enough to satisfy a teacher for a lifetime? Perhaps just a scrap of conversation remembered by Bill Lofquist ’54 from the early days of Don’s tenure at Holderness: “Bill, I know that Middlebury wasn’t your first choice. But I had wonderful experiences there, and I’m sure you will too.”


“Yes sir.” “ese are just suggestions, but I hope some of them will be of value. You should consider taking classes from Paul Cubeta—Shakespeare. Beowulf—Brown, English. Arthur Healy—fine arts. Walter Bogart—political science. What do you think?” “I think I’ll miss you so much.” Oh, won’t we all. Myself, I remember a story Don, laughing, told me in 2014 in my role as a reporter for HST. “ere was a day a few years ago, on the Dartmouth College Skiway, when the temperature was around zero,” Don said. “I was out skiing, and it was pretty rough, and I saw no one else on the slopes. I took my last run, told the lift operator I was going home, and as I left, I heard the operator say into his radio, ‘George, you can shut it down. Henderson’s done.’” •

update: trustees

A Board Member’s Perspective on Communities of Difference

Burgie Howard ’82

by aNdrEw HErriNg When Burgie Howard ’82 speaks, you can’t help but listen. His booming voice commands your attention, but it’s his genuine nature and sincere commitment to the student experience that keeps you engaged. Burgie’s no stranger to the world of education; he’s exactly the type of person you want at the table when talking about student development, having worked at Bowdoin College, Colgate University, Santa Clara University, Dartmouth College, Northwestern University, and now Yale University where he is a senior associate dean and associate vice president of student life. Burgie chose to attend Holderness because “it felt right.” e campus was friendly; the academics were strong. ere was a distinct connection to the outdoors, and Burgie’s father loved the concept of the Job Program as a way of teaching leadership and responsibility. ere was also a resonant authenticity. “e admissions officer, Steve Christaksis,” Burgie shared, “was truly candid about the potential challenge

of the racial dynamics of the school at the time and asked how I felt about possibly moving into such a space and community. at candor, combined with a sense that he and others were committed to making the school a great choice, sealed the deal.” Holderness was a good fit, and Burgie took full advantage of all that the school had to offer. He explored the arts—singing in the glee club, playing in the band, acting in plays and musicals, and even representing Holderness at the New Hampshire All-State Chorale during his senior year. In playing soccer, basketball, and lacrosse, he developed a lifelong passion for athletics, committing to a three-sport philosophy before it had become a requirement. Burgie joined the Outing Club and often hiked alongside Bill Biddle and Mark Winkler. A stranger to snow sports, he discovered the joy of skiing and snowshoeing, and he could even be seen driving a team of oxen to clear trails above the Upper Fields. From Holderness, Burgie went to Dartmouth, where he had an equally wonderful experience. When considering his career path, Burgie pointed to those like Paul Elkins, Jim Nourse, Bill Burke and his advisors, counselors, and mentors at Dartmouth, who, he says, “could help students navigate the school experience and maximize their opportunities. This has led to a 30-year career working at colleges and universities.” And having spent the better part of his life in the dean of student’s office, Burgie is well aware of the joys and challenges inherent in the college experience. Although he’s worked at some of the world’s premier universities, the most important aspect of a student’s experience, he says, is fit. “Much more than reputation or rankings, for a college experience to be exceptional, the school needs to have the right mix of comfort and challenge—both in the classroom and on campus. Students need to look past the ‘top 25’ and find the places that fit them, and will allow them to grow as people

and explore and develop their passions, interests, and beliefs.” When it comes to his work on the Holderness Board of Trustees, though, Burgie’s focus goes beyond college matriculation and fit. He’s committed to preserving the special livinglearning community that is Holderness and wants to see the school tell its story to a broader audience in a more impactful way. But, most of all, Burgie wants to make sure Holderness continues to prepare students to fully embrace the calling of the school’s mission, to work for the betterment of humankind and God’s creation. “If Holderness is seeking to prepare curious, impactful people who will thrive in college and beyond,” he says,“we will need to be even more intentional in our efforts to prepare our students to thrive in communities of difference. Students should be curious about people and places unlike themselves—with an Anthony Bourdainstyle genuineness. We need to expose and challenge our students to seek the world beyond the familiar, without judgement.” When Burgie’s not in meaningful discourse with the School Life Committee or leading the board in standing room-only discussions on student anxiety and socio-emotional wellbeing, he can be found reflecting on his own experience as a student. “Holderness continues to evolve while staying comfortably familiar,” Burgie says. ere are brushes with the familiar in breakfast chats with Pete Barnum and Lew Overraker and visions of the future in observing moments of joyful mastery in student work. “Holderness continues to thrive, and it is wonderful, as an alumnus, to have an opportunity to witness this periodically and contribute to its evolution.” •



update: trustees

Board Impact in the Present and for Years to Come

The newest recruit for the Holderness Board of Trustees, Paul John Ferri

by aNdrEw HErriNg When it’s spring at Holderness, you better hold on tight. The return from March break sees an all-out sprint to commencement. As we prepare for final assessments and get diplomas in order, we find time to sneak in second visits in the Admission Office, a musical on the Hagerman stage, athletic contests on the turf, and trips into the mountains and on the lakes. It might be difficult to catch your breath on any given day in April or May, but, in the midst of campus goings-on, we find brief moments for reflection and appreciation. It is during these times when we express our gratitude for graduating seniors, departing employees, and retiring trustees. After a full day’s worth of board meetings on April 27, the Holderness Board of Trustees gathered for dinner and took a few moments to say thank you and reflect on the work of Chris Carney ’75 P ’08, Randy Dales P ’80, ’00, ’02,


and Vicki Frei P ’03, ’05, ’08. In this time of goodbyes, too, the board welcomed Paul John Ferri, Jr. P ’18, ’19. Chris Carney has certainly earned a spot in the pantheon of impact board members. He’s done it all—student, parent, alumni association president, chair of the board of Governance and Nominating Committee, and, finally, treasurer of the Board of Trustees. Board Chair Bob Hall says that Chris “has done a wonderful job of providing a ‘true north’ compass point for the board.” Indeed, his careful attention to details and measured counsel have proved vital, with Head of School Phil Peck saying,“Chris is always counted on, whether he is working with Tom Phillips ’75 to get a record number of classmates back for their 40th reunion or is fulfilling his role as president of the Alumni Association. He has been our treasurer for five years, and his fiscally responsible approach has kept us healthy and thriving.”


Reflecting on his experience as a board member, Chris shares, “e overall feeling I have is one of gratitude. I am grateful for the opportunity to come as a student, grateful to be asked to serve on the board, and grateful for all the wonderful friends that Karen and I have made as part of the Holderness family.” Randy Dales started his relationship with Holderness in 1971, when Don Hagerman asked if he might be interested in serving as the school’s chaplain. What began with a simple phone call in 1971, blossomed into a 47-year relationship with Holderness School; Randy taught and coached, sent his three children to Holderness, and served on the board for nearly 14 years. Originally serving as the proxy to the bishop of New Hampshire in 2004, Randy became a full-fledged board member in 2007, quickly becoming the secretary. Phil Peck calls Randy “foundational,” adding, “He worked tirelessly to ensure that we remained aligned with the Episcopal values in our motto and mission.” Bob Hall goes on to say that Randy did all this “with a smile.” Randy comments, “Over the years, I have worked with every head of school from Edric Weld to Phil Peck, and it has been a privilege to do so.” He even teases that “finally retiring from the Holderness Board of Trustees marks a turning point in my life, when I might finally consider myself retired.” Vicki Frei brought a much-welcomed Texas drawl and straight-shooter mentality to the Board of Trustees. It’s no surprise, then, for Phil Peck to say,“Vicki has the ability to cut through the superfluous and get right to the point. Her direct, insightful, often humorous, and always supportive comments will be missed.” Vicki sees the role of board member as one committed to the long game, with decisions made today that have a lasting impact on future generations of Holderness Bulls. “My own children,” Vicki shares, “were the recipients of the dedication and work of the board 30, 40, 50 years ago (think leadership process, going co-

update: trustees

Moments of recognition and thanks for departing board members during an appreciation dinner in Weld Hall. top: Vicki Frei with Head of School Phil Peck; Bottom: Bob Cunha, with help from Business Manager Peter Hendel, honoring the work of outgoing board treasurer Chris Carney

ed, affirming our commitment to being a small school, our embrace of Episcopal heritage) that made Holderness a wonderful place for them.” And, when Vicki would grow tired of board meetings, she could always be found speaking with kids at family-style dinners, witnessing the splendor of the Barton Olympics, judging the Poetry Out Loud contest, or watching a play or concert, saying, “is was much more fun than being with all the adults!” While it will be difficult to fill the void created in Chris, Randy, and Vicki’s departure, considerable effort has been made to ensure that incoming board members prove to be just as impactful. is is already evident in the budding tenure of Paul John Ferri, Jr., who joined the Holderness School Board of Trustees for his first meeting this spring. With extensive experience in finance, operations, and human resources, Paul John notes, “I joined the board in the hope that I could contribute to the Holderness family and history. It has been an amazing place for Caroline ’18 and Alexandra ’19. Holderness’s traditional approach to the education and growth of the students is unique. Holderness is excellent in teaching young minds to stretch and explore. I hope to help advance the school, its people, and its rich history.” Phil Peck and Bob Hall concur, sharing that Paul John’s experience and pragmatic approach will be invaluable. We are grateful to all alumni, parents and friends of Holderness who have served and continue to serve the school and guide it into the future. •


Announcing the $25 Million Capital Campaign for Elevating Academics Space is the Third Teacher

What? r Create a new academic building (25,000+ square feet) and academic quad r Renovate Hagerman and Schoolhouse r Integrate the outdoors and provide innovative, collaborative, and flexible learning spaces

Why? r The last time our academic facilities had meaningful adjustments was 21 years ago. r How students learn best has changed since our academic facilities were built; Hagerman, Schoolhouse, and Carpenter no longer meet today’s teaching and learning demands. Today, we need flexible spaces that support both innovative teaching and collaborative student learning. r We focused on multi-disciplinary exploration and reconsidered what the academic experience could look like. Our educators imagined how teaching and learning could be supported by experiential learning and adaptable spaces with modern outfitting, matching the innovations in our methods and curricula. r Teaching and learning requires new habits, flexible methods, and elevating environments. r Renovations and a new facility will add 25,000+ square feet of technology-supported learning space to our campus, providing up-to-date wet and dry science labs, classrooms, seminar areas, and makerspace.



Architect’s rendering of science lAb

How? r We started the summer at $15.8 million raised, and most recently, we received a generous and anonymous matching gift challenge totaling $6.5 million. t This challenge evenly matches the first $2.5 million of new money raised, and for the next $2.5 million, the match is $1.60 for every dollar raised. t Essentially, if we raise another $5 million and add the $6.5 million match, we will exceed our $25 million goal! r Thanks to the generosity of the Holderness community, we have now raised $20 million, and we believe there will be a shovel in the ground in 2019! r Would you join us in elevating academics at Holderness with a gift of your own that will at least be doubled? Go online to www.ElevatingAcademics.org, use the enclosed envelope, or call 603.779.5225 with specific questions.



Scenes from Reunion 2018







A Lifetime of Learning

Brooke Thomas with his wife of 54 years and fellow researcher, Shirley, in the Andes

Brooke Thomas ’58 “Holderness undoubtedly changed my life,” says Brooke omas ’58. “For the first time I realized that education wasn’t something to escape but could be both fun and stimulating.” Since his years at Holderness, Brooke has dedicated his life to research, learning, and teaching. He’s also been giving back, not directly to Holderness but to another group, the Quechua people he met over a half century ago in the high Andes. Brooke first traveled to Peru in 1964 as a young graduate student. Just starting a career in bio-


logical anthropology, he joined a group of researchers from Penn State to study human adaptations to high altitude, or to hypoxic stress, at 14,000 feet. Here, oxygen levels are 40% less than at sea level, and as they say: “the air is pure but there’s not much of it.” Traveling by jeep, they drove from the barren coast to the high grasslands of the Andes. “We wanted to find one of the highest communities possible that was practicing traditional agriculture and herding,” Brooke says. ere, the plan was to find out if the biological adaptations of the Quechua people to this exceptionally stressful climate were primarily genetic or devel-


opmental, meaning that the larger lungs, heart and other physiological characteristics were laid down during the growth period and resulted from developmental acclimatization.“What we found, contrary to our expectations, was that their adaptations for the most part were not genetic, which is a testament to general human plasticity,” Brooke explains. Brooke’s focus, then, switched to adaptive responses to other Andean stressors, such as cold and undernutrition, and showed the importance of behavioral/cultural responses which complement biological ones. ese studies led to a biocultural model of adaptability. One of


the most interesting responses to cold, Brooke says, was how infants are protected from cold by tight swaddling and complete enclosure in a carrying blanket when outside: “We called this the ‘marsupial approach’ to cold stress.” As an overall indicator of how well people were adapting to this multi-stress environment, Brooke and his colleagues decided to examine the prevalence of illness and how this was affecting household dynamics. Exploitation of the native community has long been endemic in the Andes, and the area studied was no exception. “It seemed to us that however sophisticated the adaptive fabric had been, its threads had worn thin and more frequent illness became the consequence,” says Brooke. is, in turn, had significant consequences. High illness prevalence in a family meant work days lost, less time spent on agricultural activities, and reduced yields. As conditions persisted it usually resulted in the sale of assets (tools, land, and herd animals) and eventually out-migration to the city. us the biocultural model, which focused on adaptability, was expanded into one that took into account the pervasive exploitation of surplus production. It was a clear demonstration of the biology of poverty. Brooke continued to travel to Peru throughout the 1970s and early ’80s, by this time as a professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts/Amherst. Research was carried out working with multidisciplinary teams made up of colleagues and students from over a dozen universities. In the late ’80s, the inevitable happened: people had been pushed to their limits. e Shining Path revolutionary movement gained control of the region with drastic and horrific consequences. Friendly villagers advised Brooke and his team that it was best to leave for everyone’s sake. In 1987 his team pulled out its last researcher from Peru. It wasn’t until 1993 that he was able to return, this time focusing on the consequences of post-traumatic stress disorder

on the villagers in the wake of the Shining Path’s destruction. While his formal Andean research concluded in 2000, Brooke has continued to visit the mountain communities of Peru, where he has witnessed slow but important progress. “e roads have really helped improve access to a variety of food,” he says, “and there are a lot more vegetables in the markets.” Rural clinics have helped improve the general health of the people as well, and grassroots organizations have given villagers ways to support themselves. Brooke helps where he can, first delivering wheelchairs to needy individuals and organizing a blanket drive for the people in remote villages under the permanent snow fields. Climate change is bringing much colder temperatures and unpredictable weather to the altiplano, causing increased mortality of young alpacas, the life-blood of the herders. Brooke also founded the Nuñoa Project with Steve Purdy, an alpaca veterinarian from the Amherst, MA area. eir mission is to help the herders and townspeople of the southern Peruvian highlands, through the exchange of information, the creation of self-sustaining programs, and the establishment of veterinary assistance and education. e project also provides educational and research opportunities, along with training, for students, farmers and veterinarians through the North American Camelid Studies Program in the US. Some students travel to Peru to help assess the health of the local herds, assisting in herd management, disease prevention, and improving reproductive rates. Brooke has also been instrumental in facilitating the operation of a yarn-spinning cooperative for elderly women and disabled people, both of whom are often marginalized and have no other source of income. ey began with a $5000-grant two years ago to rent a workspace and purchase washing, carting, and spinning equipment. Using traditional methods of spinning, the women are able to market their

yarn rather than simply selling the raw fiber (wool) at lower prices. “We are also exploring the US market where profits will be considerably higher,” says Brooke. “One of our members is an importer of Peruvian woven goods and has been willing to use her services free of charge to get the Nuñoa goods to this country.” Brooke has also carried out other environmental anthropological research on people and forests in India and Mexico. From 1999-2009 his work took a dramatic shift and moved to sea level, studying how the mass tourism south of Cancun, Mexico, is adversely impacting Maya communities and their environment. For this and the Andean studies, he was elected as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In June, Brooke returned to Holderness for his 60th reunion and had an opportunity to hike to Holderness School’s Outdoor Chapel with Head of School Phil Peck, returning to the school that inspired his lifetime journey. In reminiscing about the school’s impact he concludes: “Coming out of a big, impersonal high school in New Jersey, with little interest in anything academic, Holderness was a wonderful retreat in which to build some self-esteem and a sense of value, and to figure out where one could go in life with some hard work. People at school, students and faculty alike, were supportive in ways I could not imagine. e experience served as a jump start and undoubtedly changed my life in showing me what a wonderful and interesting world lay out there.” •




The Impact of the Arts

Sophie Moeller

Sophie Moeller ’01 What are the chances that a person’s profession can encompass their greatest passion? And what if, along the way, that same profession can make a profound difference in the course of many people’s lives? Sophie Moeller ’01 has succeeded in doing both. “eater and acting have been a constant in my life, something I have always sought out, no matter where I live,” says Sophie. “For me it’s not about ego or anything superficial; it’s about giving people an opportunity to step out of their lives—to escape, to learn something, to look at the world through a different lens.” Sophie remembers early on in her childhood having a strong imagination and finding joy in pretending to be someone else. She began acting in middle school and took advantage of Holderness School’s theater program in high school. By 2008 Sophie had moved west, where her friend Amanda French ’01 had settled outside of Reno, NV in Truckee. Although she spent a short stint in Hollywood and returned home to


Cape Cod for six months to tend to her mother during a battle with stage 3 breast cancer, Sophie decided to settle in Nevada, where she has been instrumental in helping to grow Truckee’s community theater program. But acting isn’t Sophie’s only passion. She also has a strong compulsion to help others, beginning at Hospice and the Special Olympics. Later, when she moved to Nevada, Sophie worked with Girls on the Run and Achieve Tahoe. Most recently, Sophie has become involved with STEP2 whose mission it is to stop the cycle of addiction in women and children (www.step2reno.org). Their program begins with residential treatment for three to six months. During that time, clients are not allowed caffeine, sugar, or nicotine; they are allowed visits with their children, but unless the children are less than six months old, they cannot live at the facility. “We have a reputation of being strict,” says Sophie. “Our goal is to help our clients get healthy and understand that what you put into your body will affect the way you feel.” Once clients have successfully completed treatment, they can move into one of the 25 cottages STEP2 maintains, and where they can stay for up to a year. e women are required to have employment but in return are provided with reduced rent and childcare. e furniture in their homes is all donated and is given to them when they leave. “In Nevada the minimum wage is $8.25/hour, so it is not easy to support oneself, let alone a family, so we give them as much assistance as we can while they are here,” says Sophie. After settling into her new position as manager of the residential home, Sophie noticed the lack of art and music within the STEP2 program. “I’m a firm believer in art and music being a part of the healing process and encouraging connections between human beings,” says Sophie. “e women with whom


we work have not had a lot of exposure to art and I wanted to changed that.” Her first efforts began with the Reno Little eater that committed 22 tickets for every production. Sophie began taking the STEP2 women to productions and was encouraged by the overwhelmingly positive response she received. When she made her second call, to the Reno Philharmonic, they agreed to provide her with tickets, but they had something else in mind as well. Based on the Lullaby Project started by Carnegie Hall in 2012, the Reno Philharmonic wanted to do their own Lullaby Project, and they wanted to work with STEP2 women. e Lullaby Project Reno began last fall, partnering the Reno Philharmonic with NoteAble Music erapy Services (NAMTS) and STEP2. Women from STEP2, with the help of NAMTS music therapists, were guided through the process of composing, singing, and recording original lullabies for their children. “It’s been almost a year since we started the project, and we’re getting ready to work with a new group of women this summer,” says Sophie. “It’s one of the most profound experiences that I have ever been a part of.” “ere’s no magic formula or clinical reason why one treatment works for one and not another; exercise may help one person, while music therapy helps another,” continues Sophie whose own father died from addiction. “I think it’s important to know that life isn’t necessarily linear. You have to have a willingness to adapt.” Perhaps, but for Sophie two things remain constant—her love of theater and her passion for helping others through the arts, both of which have had a lasting and significant impact on the lives of those around her. •


Stepping Up to the Plate Paula Lillard Preschlack ’88 When Paula Lillard Preschlack ’88 describes her professional life, she tends to see the choices she has made as a series of chances, as forks in the road that were perhaps logical, but far from intentional or planned. Her ability to take advantage of those opportunities and grow from them, however, speaks otherwise. When Paula Lillard Preschlack was at Holderness, her favorite stretches were the weeks when she could focus intensively on something, whether it be art, the outdoors, a period in history, or an individual in-depth study of her own interest. During Artward Bound, Out Back, and Senior Colloquium, she was intrigued with the discovery that she could learn more and remember more when her focus was on one topic. is in turn led her to write a research paper on Montessori education and to choose Hampshire College after graduation; she was motivated by the freedom to choose what she was studying and by the supportive, close relationships she developed with her professors. Holderness and Hampshire turned her into a life-long learner and Paula knew she loved helping people to learn, but she never intended to become a school teacher. “I wanted to spend my time outdoors, training horses and teaching people to ride,” says Paula. “I also loved to write. But the stark reality of making a living as either a writer or a horse trainer were clear to me within a few months of graduating. It was then that I decided to get a degree as a Montessori teacher—as a default, honestly!” She says it wasn’t until she was in the lectures at the Washington Montessori Institute that she realized that Montessori was a perfect fit and a way to make a real difference in other’s lives. “e emphasis of Montessori teaching is on the children forming themselves, rather than being molded or formed by teachers,” says Paula. “is gives children complete respect and direct involvement in their own education. e

adult’s job is to prepare a stimulating learning environment and help the child connect to it, then follow the child’s interests.” Paula’s first position was at Forest Bluff School, a school founded by her mother, Paula Polk Lillard, and her sister, Lynn Jessen.“It was again, by default; I wanted to live in Denver or somewhere fun, not in my hometown in Illinois!” says Paula.“But it was the best job offer, and I knew it was one of the very best schools, where Montessori was being authentically practiced. As a full-time teacher, I fell in love with the approach and with the children, and I have been there now for over twenty years.” In 2006, Paula’s mother decided to step down from her role as head of school, and Paula was selected to take her place. “When I was chosen,” says Paula, “I had mixed feelings. I had a one-year-old and a three-year-old at home, a husband who traveled a lot for work, we had just moved into a new house, and the school was embarking on a campaign to raise half a million dollars for the endowment; without my husband cheering me on, I don’t think I would have had the guts to take the job.” In the following ten years as head of school, Paula has spent six of them back in the classroom, teaching full-time as well as running the school.“In my career,” she says,“I think I’ve written over one hundred talks on detailed aspects of Montessori both for our school community and around the country to other schools and at conferences. I share this just to help Holderness students understand that you can never know what you can do when you’re called to step up to the plate. I never, ever would have thought I could be a leader of a school community, or juggle so many responsibilities, or get up in front of people and enjoy speaking.” Currently Paula is writing a book about Montessori education, examining how widely misrepresented the approach is, and what the potential for authentic Montessori education is. “I think most people have a vaguely positive association with Montessori education but are

Paula Lillard Preschlack standing in front of a portrait of Maria Montessori at an international Montessori conference in Prague

not entirely sure about what it is, what it means, and how it works,” continues Paula. “So, this book is really meant to help people understand it, give them the tools to explain it and know what to look for in a program, and how to support Montessori programs to improve.” Paula’s career choices may have been made somewhat by default, but her convictions about education and teaching are far from uncertain. “My hope for children today is that teachers will stop delivering selected information for students who must memorize it. I hope that teachers will utilize more engaging approaches, ones in which teachers show a variety of interesting possibilities and in which students have more choices and can follow their interests. It makes school into a joyful, engaging endeavor. Learning becomes a lifelong journey of building not a student, but a person.” •




If That’s What It Takes

Craig Westling

Craig Westling ’84 Craig Westling ’84 is disappointed that our national debate on health care is more about money than ethics. In the interest of leverage, though, the Dartmouth Institute director focuses on where the money is spent. Craig Westling remembers the night a man with an abscessed tooth arrived at the Good Neighbor Health Clinic at which he was volunteering. “He was coming in at night—with a rag in his mouth, in terrible pain—because he couldn’t take time off from work to see a dentist, let alone afford one,” Craig says. “At seven PM we were his only option, and that night I was reminded again—a humane, wealthy society can do better than this.” e good news is that at least in New England’s Upper Connecticut Valley, among the hardscrabble towns of western New Hampshire and eastern Vermont, such an option exists. e Good Neighbor clinics are funded on donations and grants, and they provide free medical and dental care for those who qualify by virtue of low monthly income.


And the case of that man with the abscess was one of many such heartbreakers Craig saw in his early days at GNHC. Craig himself grew up in both central Vermont and the San Francisco Bay area, the split-custody child of parents who met at the University of California, Berkeley in the 1960s. He attended Holderness for its academic rigor, went to Middlebury for a degree in English, and then— “Well, I did what most English majors do,” Craig laughs. “I got a job at a little technology start-up in San Francisco.” at little start-up—Oracle—was among those firms that got a lot bigger during the launch phase of Silicon Valley. “But I found myself struggling with the distinction you have to make between doing well versus doing good,” Craig says. “We were doing well in the software world, but there were issues to be raised about whether we were doing good.” So he left Oracle to teach elementary school, where he found he could do much good but not make much of a living. His shift into health care happened more or less by accident.“We moved from San Francisco to Norwich, Vermont—my wife, our three kids, and I—and I needed a job. I found one at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center as a quality process engineer.” It was 2001, the same year—on behalf of doing good—that Craig began volunteering once a month at the Good Neighbor clinic. “And that opened my eyes,” he says, “about what health care—or the lack of it—was like for the underinsured, the uninsured, the working poor, people without sick leave or vacation time, whose incomes are at risk with their health.” S






In 2003 he began to serve on the board of GNHC, and over the next twelve years he would earn a master’s in public health from Dartmouth, a doctorate in that field from the University of North Carolina, become vice president of the GNHC board, and be named director of education at Dartmouth’s Institute


for Health Policy and Clinical Practice. ere he oversees master’s and Ph.D. programs in public health and clinical science. “In the United States, we spend forty percent more per capita than the next closest developed country, yet our life expectancy and other measures are only average,” Craig says. “In terms of how much we spend relative to the outcomes we achieve, the situation is astonishingly bleak—and especially so in regard to oral health, which is a particular focus at GNHC. e consequences of poor oral health are both underappreciated and underreported.” At both the national and state levels, bad health policy ensures a waste of money, and also—somewhere along the line, sooner rather than later, thinks Craig—an ultimate reckoning. “e problems start upstream—housing, transportation, nutrition, all these areas of basic need among the poor that come down the river to complicate the problem of how to get them healthy, how to provide good care to their families,” Craig says. “We face an impending financial crisis, and that crisis will force us to finally confront the inadequacies of this system. I wish that its mere ethical failings would provoke that sort of examination, but if running out of money is what it takes, then so be it— let’s tackle it that way.” He and his family have done well in moving back to Vermont, and along the way they have benefited from excellent health care. But Craig thinks everyone should receive that benefit, regardless of job status or income, and to whatever degree he can help achieve that—locally through Good Neighbor, at the national policy level through the Dartmouth Institute—he is now and will be doing great good. •


Milestones IN MEMORIAM Jack Barton ’40, August 25, 2017 Thomas “Fred” F. Curry ’47, October 2, 2017 John Reed Thompson ’55, January 11, 2018 James S. Whitaker ’49, April 22, 2018 Walter B. McIlvain ’66, May 4, 2018 Donald Hector Henderson (PEM), May 24, 2018 Craig Van Arsdale Blouin ’64, June 18, 2018 James K. Rocks ’43, July 15, 2018

BIRTHS Mike Dodge ’98 and Tara Cole Dodge: Carmen Rose Dodge, May 9, 2017 Chris Blaine ’05 and Arianna Blaine: Madeleine Marie Blaine, June 5, 2017 Juley (Perkins) Sadler ’97 and Tommy Sadler: Thomas “Tuck” Sheridan Sadler, November 28, 2017 Andrew Everett ’02 and Becca Everett: Scarlett Bea Everett, March 22, 2018 Allison Plourde (EM) and Derek Plourde: Emelia Raine Plourde, April 10, 2018 Nate Swift ’03 and Lindsay Gillette: Archer “Archie” George Swift, April 22, 2018 Mattie (Ford) DiNapoli ’04 and Vinnie DiNapoli: Rocco Ford DiNapoli, May 5, 2018 Tom Richards ’03 and Becky Richards: Lucy Poiema Richards, May 9, 2018 Dave Castor ’94 and Joanna Castor: Adam James Castor, May 18, 2018 William “Billy” Bentley ’00 and Juliet Bentley: Ave Louise Bentley, June 17, 2018

Sean Smarz ’04 and Kate Smarz: Archer Bernard Smarz, July 30, 2018 Amy (Laverack) Nordblom ’03 and Todd Nordblom ’04: Payson Strong Nordblom, July 12, 2018

MARRIAGES Dave Castor ’94 and Joanna (Nowak) Castor, April 17, 2017 Sean Leake ’04 and Katie Leake, June 26, 2017 in Chebeague Island, ME Moselle (Pope) Abear ’08 and Matt Abear, September 23, 2017 in Plymouth, NH Patricia Porta ’12 and Jorge David, March 31, 2018 Hadley Bergh ’09 and Margot Moses (PEM), April 28, 2018 in Ashville, NC Ryanne (Haskell) Stevenson ’08 and Christopher D. Stevenson, May 12, 2018 in Ana Maria Island, FL Anna (Lockwood) Kelly ’03 and Ryan Kelly, June 2, 2018 at Rockywold Deephaven Camps, Holderness, NH Kerry Douglas ’02 and Andrew Pearce, June 16, 2018 in Stowe, VT Steve Smith ’09 and Kaysie Smith, June 16, 2018 in Bozeman, MT Kara (Herlihy) Young ’03 and Ry Young, June 16, 2018 in Essex, VT Carlie (Bristow) Febo ’06 and Anthony Febo, June 30, 2018 in Kittery, ME Kelly Pope (EM) and Ian Casey (EM), June 30, 2018 in New London, NH Heather Keslin-Sharbaugh ’04 and Matt Sharbaugh, June 30, 2018 at the Chapel of the Holy Cross, Holderness School

TOP: Stephen ’09 and Kaysie Smith were married in June just outside Bozeman, MT, surrounded by lots of Holderness alumni (left to right): Eric Wolcott ’06, Donald Smith ’80, Jennifer Smith ’85, Bryce Connery ’03, Stephen Smith ’09, Kelsey Smith ’07, Nicholas Smith ’07, Connor Smith ’12; ABOVE: Ry and Kara (Herlihy) Young ’03 were married this past June!

Nick Leonard ’03 and Jen Leonard, July 14, 2018 in Aspen, CO Kit (Henderson-Adams) Bayer ’05 and Sean Bayer, August 4, 2018 in Ashfield, MA

Chris Nielson ’02 and Suni Dillard, August 11, 2018 at the Chapel of the Holy Cross, Holderness School Elise Steiner ’10 and Michael Hacker, August 18, 2018, on Cape Cod

FALL 2018 | holderness school today



’45 Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you! Congratulations to Maclear “Mac” Jacoby, who is being honored by the Landon School, where he has worked for 63 years: “We are pleased to announce that Leslie and Bruce McNair ’73 [Landon School Alumnus] have made a lead gift of $100,000 to establish The Maclear Jacoby Endowed Fund. The fund honors the legacy of Maclear ‘Mac’ Jacoby and will support Landon School’s historic tennis program, the Athletics Department, and the programs Mac worked tirelessly toward as a coach, administrator, official, statistician, manager, and announcer as the ‘voice’ of Bears football. Mac celebrates his 63rd year at Landon in 2018. He grew up in Connecticut and played tennis at Trinity College. He moved to the Washington area after serving in the Air Force during the Korean War. After arriving at Landon in 1955, Mac served as a middle school math teacher for 23 years, head of the middle school for 20 years, and coached varsity tennis as an assistant or head coach for most of his time at Landon. The Landon tennis program has produced more than 20 national individual champions and team titles, and Mac has helped lead the team to 42 of its 50 Iac titles. The Landon School boys earned the most recent of those titles in 2018. Mac now works in the Athletics Department, and our annual alumni tennis tournament held every May is named in his honor. The tennis courts are also named


in his honor, a fundraising effort Bruce McNair co-chaired in the early 1990s. Mac leads by example and has impacted generations of young men at Landon, as well as colleagues and other members of our community. Income from this fund will support and perpetuate Landon’s historic tennis legacy, as well as the Athletics Department and programs.”


active with trips and golf at our retirement area. Our family is nearby and that is a blessing. Wishing all of our remaining eight classmates (including yours truly) the very best now and for the future years. Time does pass too quickly.” … Although Dave Hapgood was unable to make it to our 70th reunion from his home in Florida, thoughtful telephone calls were received from Dave before the reunion and afterwards upon receiving the 70th reunion report.

Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you!

’49 (reunion)


CLASS CORRESPONDENT Bill Baskin ’49 william_c_baskin@sbcglobal.net

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Bill Briggs ’47 magdalenabriggs@ymail.com


’48 The best and most recent news is about the very successful and satisfying 70th reunion for the Class of 1948, June 1–3, 2018. Paul Wilson was able to attend with Sandy and me; John Codman could not attend at the last minute. Best wishes were received from Bart Chase and Dave Hapgood in advance. Our 75th reunion will be in 2023. … Sandy and I took a cruise to Alaska in July, leaving from and returning to Seattle. Good health continues to bless us and golf is still fun, although not perfect. … Bart Chase writes, “Life here on the West Coast is good, and we’re trying to stay active and enjoy life with special emphasis on family get-togethers. Our only greatgranddaughter, age four, lives less than a mile away and we do have quality time with her. We are still

holderness school today | FALL 2018

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Rik Clark ’48 capeclarks@aol.com

There still are several of us who manage to stay in touch rather regularly as octogenarians hanging in there. Our families do an excellent job of keeping us propped up at the dinner table with or without a bib, depending on who in the household is around to help “tie one on.”(In earlier days, this phrase had an entirely different meaning for those who enjoyed a libation or two from time to time.) So what are our classmates up to these days? Here’s a nice update from Chico Laird: “I’m taking life one day at a time as we work with professionals here at nhc to try to stay even with ‘growing old gracefully.’ I responded to James Whitaker’s ’49 family when he was laid to rest on Chebeague Island, ME. My parents had a cottage there, and my grandparents before them; I spent every summer there until after college. I wish Jim and I had been closer;

Mac Jacoby Jr. ’45, between Leslie and Bruce McNair. Bruce, who is an alumnus of the Landon School, just established an endowed fund in Mac’s honor.

bet we would have enjoyed swapping stories about the ‘Island of Many Springs.’” … We too send our condolences to Jim Whitaker’s family. It was a great loss. I remember Jim as a gentleman in every sense of the word. He leaves an impressive legacy about a humble man dedicated to serving others, which he did so nobly. … Bigelow Green continues to enjoy his retirement from his delightful home overlooking the Hudson River a few miles from New York City. He currently has an impressive view of the building of another Tappan Zee Bridge. The sights from his deck are breathtaking. Bigelow and Sally are in regular touch with their son Chris who lives nearby and daughter Sarah who is residing in the Boston area. … I recently had a chat with Peter Hamilton, Birgitta and Doug Hamilton’s son, who, along with his wife and lovely daughters, live in Greenwich, CT. All appears to be well on the home front. Our classmate, I’m sure, is looking forward to hunting season coming up later this year. He’s been engaged in that outdoor activity for years and is believed to be one of the best marksmen in that particular region of Connecticut. … We owe Roy Krebs a debt of gratitude for his regular email messages to us about a variety of events—public and private—that he has either observed or experienced. As a career military officer, our classmate was deeply involved in


addressing intelligence matters. We recently saw a photograph— from Facebook, I think—of Roy with his lovely girls. You can see from the expression on his face that he’s a very happy family man with daughters. I bet now Pop’s a “soft touch,” but unquestionably the head of the family. We are thankful to him for his service to his country. … My wife Squidge and I continue to be very happy in our condo here in New London. Now that our daughter Bebe and her family have taken over our property on Old Main Street, we get to see her clan more often. Their son Henry is a student at Plymouth State (now renamed Plymouth State University). Their daughter Megan, who just graduated from Proctor Academy in Andover, NH, will start at the University of Colorado Boulder this fall as a freshman. We have pretty much settled down at our home. Traveling is no longer an important priority. Now that the warmer weather is here, I can go out for a daily bike ride to town and sometimes beyond along Route 11. I try to avoid hills at all costs, a challenging assignment for anyone living in New Hampshire. When I’m not on the road, I’m home checking out the daily news on the computer, which can be depressing given the quality of the national leadership with which we have to contend these days. Enough said. Our thanks go to Phil Peck who continues to be supportive of the “ancient” alumni who will always treasure their memories of the old Holderness days. The head of school is a good man. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Frank Hammond ’50 fhammond64@comcast.net


CLASS CORRESPONDENT Al Teele ’52 859.734.3625

latest great-grandson who is only a month old. We just heard about Reed Thompson’s death. We were roommates in our senior year living in Hoit. We had a good year together, but I have not seen him since graduation. He was a good man and a good friend.” … Nathaniel “Nat” Pulsifer and Nathaniel M. “Than” Pulsifer ’92 applaud their grandson/nephew, Henry “NP” Heyburn ’22 of Brunswick, ME for enrolling in the Holderness Class of 2022. Well done!



Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you!

In June I either emailed or sent snail mail letters to each member of the Class of 1956. Because of the letter, I received a phone call from Hugh Barndollar, but unfortunately, no follow up written correspondence. Hugh lives in Florida, and is now well, after some serious illness. … And then, to my complete surprise was a letter from Philippe Coupey. Philippe is a Buddhist monk, living in Paris. He writes, “Thank you for your letter of June 9, which I just received. Yes, it’s perhaps no longer so easy to get in touch with me since I am one of those classmates you mention who doesn’t have email. I have no internet, no TV, and from one point of view, it really does leave me out in the cold. But since I don’t much feel the cold any longer, it goes well for myself. Since I last communicated with you at Holderness (around 20 years ago!), the Sangha (in this case, the Soto Zen Buddhist community) has continued to grow, especially in France and Germany, and now we are about 400 to 500 disciples strong. (In the States they say ‘students,’ but since the practice is not something you stop when you go home at night, we prefer to keep the

Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you!


’54 (reunion) CLASS CORRESPONDENT Berton Chillson ’54 bbmchill56@aol.com

’55 Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you! Peter Wilson reports, “We are loving our new home in Florida (ccrc-Bentley Village) in Naples, but still loving our lakeside cabins in Maine in the summer. My and Gail’s health remain strong.” … Don Stephenson writes, “We are doing the same family and church and musical things that we have been doing for many years. Our family just keeps getting bigger. In fact, we are one more with our

original word, ‘disciple’ in our nomenclature.) To answer your questions as directly as possible, let me say that I published my first book on Zen in 1978, took my monk ordination in 1980, and have continued to teach and write books right until today—non-fiction (on Zen Buddhism), and so-called ‘Zen fiction’ under the alias of M.C. Dalle. Et voila!” … As your correspondent, Dick Meyer, I will close with the continuing story of the antique railroad cars I play at restoring. The combine with the storm damaged roof had the roof replaced by a professional, master carpenter. The craftsmanship is beyond description, with all the rafters made from mahogany, the use of flexible plywood, and the fashioning of the double compound curves on each end of the coach. Then, the ceiling was replaced with fir bead board, stained and varnished. While that was in progress, I designed and built a replacement electrical system that powers the amplifier that is used by a docent, who narrates the train ride, and also tells the story of the Polar Express during the runs between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Daytime lights are powered by a battery/inverter system; after dark operations require a generator. At the same time, my crew continues restoration work on the 1913 caboose. Although neither car is completely finished, we plan to put the combine in the consist for July 4th and display the caboose. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Dick Meyer ’56 richard419@roadrunner.com

’57 Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging

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Philippe Coupey ’56, alongside fellow Buddhist practitioners of the Way at the Temple de La Gendronniere. Philippe is the shaved-headed monk in the middle wearing a vest and blue neckerchief; sitting on the step below, wearing red boots, is his daughter.

The ever-growing family of Don ’55 and Nancy Stephenson. The photo includes one son and three daughters, three of their spouses, 10 grandchildren, and one greatgrandson. The latest great-grandson, who was a month old, was the only one who missed the photo.

your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you!

’58 Bill Biddle reports, “Erl Solstad, Brooke Thomas, and I, at Holderness in June, celebrated sixty years of life after Holderness. We were wined and dined, made much of, and walked away with engraved souvenirs of our visit (suitable for serving Manhattans). We had a good visit with Phil Peck, whose leadership we continue to greatly admire. We shared recollections of what, sixty years ago, we thought brilliant


mischief, and also recollections of much of a decent character that occurred during our tenure at the school. The younger alumni, exuberant in their numbers, their multiplicity of genders, and their robust and athletic informality, contrasted deeply with our more staid and melancholic ruminations on classmates and instructors absent by choice—or by death. But noting no evidence of any other classmates but the three of us, we determined to find out what’s become of us all. In the hugely lamented absence of Charlie Kellogg, Brooke and I convened recently at his rustic Vermont camp at the end of a two-track that runs off a rough

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dirt road that runs off another dirt road that runs off a very long automobile ascent. There, we pondered strategies to root you out—at least prod you to your keyboards. Be on the lookout.” … Don Latham and his wife Jennifer took a break from going south during the winter months to once again enjoy having the family home in New Hampshire for the holidays. “With a house full of love and music, and the fireplaces aglow with the warmth of the season, we all enjoyed our family gathering,” Don notes. CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Bill Biddle ’58 williambiddle@myfairpoint.net Brooke Thomas ’58 rbthomas@anthro.umass.edu

’59 (reunion) Greetings. As I write this, we are coming out of a vicious heatwave here on the coast of Maine. No doubt, when you read the last classmate note, it will be a refreshing experience. … Old, and I mean old, fraternity brother Chris Palmer, informed me of an

interesting lunch he had with a former high school mate of Don Henderson’s, who was a Navy fighter pilot in his day. It seems that he had a great interest in Don and his impact on Holderness, which we all know is incalculable. Great skiing stories were shared about adventures many years ago at Berlin High School. … From near neighbor Steve Barndollar comes news that he finally achieved grandfather status. I can attest to this fact since Jeanne and I were lucky enough to meet the bundle of joy some weeks ago. A real cutie. Steve also reminded me to once again mention the fundraising effort in memory of Don Henderson. He and Cush Andrews have been very involved in this endeavor. It would be quite satisfying if our class participation were to increase. He was a oncein-a-lifetime teacher who should be remembered. … Once again, old faithful Lee Miller has checked in with news that will remain unprinted. His wish is that it remains this way since he thinks people are tired of all his responses. This, of course, is far


Don ’58 and Jen Latham surrounded by their entire family

from the truth, but I will respect his wishes. Suffice to say, all is going well with the Miller crew in Ocean City, MD. Great-grandparenthood could be in his future. Good grief!! … From Bruce Vogel comes word of his attempt to become as bad at fishing as he is at golf. It seems as though a trip to Tromso, Norway is in the near future. Bruce will be back East sometime later this year. I’ll be happy to arrange a little get together with Chris Palmer and Steve Barndollar. … Reminder, Mr. Charley Murphy: You were thinking of heading to New England. Is this still a possibility? We would love to see you. I never thought I would say that. … And now comes the cooling, refreshing news that I mentioned at the beginning of this article. It comes from John Clough, by the way of Buster Welch. In my mind, it is

truly a remarkable piece of writing. Former faculty Joe Abbey would be proud. John has had Parkinson’s for nearly 20 years, and he has found that skiing has helped with this condition. I quote directly from John’s words as follows: “Alpine ski sessions have been a joy. Muscle memory gives me the old thrill of a wellcarved turn, a moment of glide that we all, be we skiers or not, seek in life. There is the turn’s anticipation, the setting up, the early subtle movement when the weight ventures away from safety, quickly going to the outside and away from the hill, the hope that this risk may produce something good, and then as one withholds the urge to rotate but instead follows the arc, the ski accepts the challenge and gives the reward of acceleration.” No need to say anything else. That says it all! … Good

SHARE YOUR NEWS! Have you recently encountered a milestone in your life? Share your news with your classmates! Please contact us at alumni@holderness.org.

A self-portrait of Don Latham ’58 and his Golden Retriever Rani in her favorite position—both taking a slight break from all the season’s festivities

going guys. You gave me something to write about. Keep the news coming. There are still many of you who have yet to contribute. Hopefully, I will be hearing from some new classmates. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Jerry Ashworth ’59 ashworth.kemah@gmail.com

’60 My last report to you all as class correspondent was in February. Since it was my maiden voyage in this new position (I also wear a class agent hat; guess I have a big head.), and in honor of Len Richards, eight responded to me. But now it is June and only five have contacted me. Maybe it is a symptom of old age; hopefully not apathy. … Brian Dewart sent an email saying he slept recently for 12 hours, and he also asked me when the deadline was to send me some news. When I did not hear from him, I was going to tease him, but now I will delete that paragraph, as Brian really came through. Brian reported, “It’s hard to believe that we’re coming up on our 60th reunion in another two years. I’m reminded

of something I read on a birthday card recently: ‘Just remember, once you’re over the hill you begin to pick up speed!’ So I’m trying to slow things down and enjoy a gradual descent—although that sometimes is not so easy. I guess anyone our age is thankful and lucky to have their health, family, and friends—the only things that really matter. I still live in Ithaca, NY where I have lived since graduation from Cornell many years ago. I live across the road from my former wife in a rural area a few miles from the university. She and I have remained friends since our divorce almost 40 years ago, and neither of us has remarried. Having experienced two different careers (restaurant business and teaching), I retired about 15 years ago primarily to spend more time in San Diego with my only child (daughter Tess) and only grandson. I find myself returning there every winter for a few months to be near them. San Diego has beautiful weather, for sure, but Ithaca has a lifestyle and pace that frankly suit me better. My biggest joy and pleasure come from spending time and traveling with my five siblings. My twin,

FALL 2018 | holderness school today



LEONARD BURBANK RICHARDS III ’60 FEbruary 28, 1943–July 7, 2017 BY GERRY “SHY” SHYAVITZ ’60, CLASS CORRESPONDENT Mensch is a German word, and in Yiddish means “a decent human being; a good person.” This was Len Richards, who passed away a year ago. Charlie Witherell ’60 recently said, “No question but that we took Len’s position (as class correspondent) as a forever thing, and we failed to appreciate what services he gave to the Class of 1960 over so many years.” Fifty-eight years ago we graduated from Holderness, and during much of that time, Len was our voice. The qualities of a great alumnus should not be rated solely by one’s generous financial support—although Len certainly was a loyal and generous donor. It was also Len’s passion, loyalty

Alan Dewart, lives with his wife Carolyn in East Aurora, NY (outside Buffalo)—an easy three-hour drive—and I visit them often. Brother Tim Dewart ’58 and his wife Annie live in Beverly, MA, and brother Ted Dewart ’63 and wife Gwen live just outside of Philly. My sister Judy and her husband Rob live in Northampton, MA. For a good part of the summers you will usually find me in Tadoussac, Quebec (where we have several cottages), spending time with my sibs. Believe it or not, our family ancestors have been summering there since 1861! Tadoussac is a beautiful, small, quaint French-Canadian village, about an hour’s drive north of La Malbaie where the recent G7 summit was held. Our once peaceful village now gets inundated every summer by many tourists—many from Europe—who visit the province. All in all, life is good and I have much to be thankful for. Looking forward to our 60th!” … Charley Witherell sent a very gracious note thanking


Arthur “Spike” Hampson ’60 with his daughter and her two kids in New Haven, CT (July of 2017)

and love of Holderness that truly fulfilled the qualities of a great alumnus. Len always had a smile, but was also serious, warm, friendly…a real mensch. We shall miss you Len.

me for taking over for Len and stated, “We all took Len’s position as a forever thing and failed to appreciate what services he gave to the Class of 1960 over so many years.” Charlie goes on to say he is glad Bill and Len made it to the last reunion as “reunions take on special importance.” In other news from Charley: “Pam and I enjoyed an amazing family reunion last November with both sons and two grandchildren for Thanksgiving dinner in Maui, HI. Jonathan lives on Maui and Ben in Colorado. There are a few upsides to having distant family! In an effort to continue our longstanding passion for maple sugaring, Pam and I underwent rotator cuff surgery just six weeks apart. We are a cute couple wearing our matching slings! Recovery is long, but we’ll be ready for the 2019 season. Our surgeon was Dr. John Macy ’82. It’s always fun to discover the extent of our Holderness community!” … Ross Deachman thanks me for taking over for Len. Ross is retiring from

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the law and says it is not easy. The signs on his office will be removed by December 31, and he will wind down the practice, although he will keep some trusts, as he is a trustee. Ross’s health is good; I hope you all are experiencing good health. I wonder if a very wealthy client approaches Ross now, will he still take the case since he is retiring? We will have to wait and see. … Loren Berry has recovered nicely from a recent procedure. Later this summer, he will join the 50-yearsof-marriage club. Pearl and I are about to celebrate our 51st, although she says, “Don’t push your luck.” Esther and Loren will celebrate in Portland, ME, and hopefully, I may see them. … Don Sokoloski replied, saying, “Sorry, Shy, nothing to talk about.” Therefore, I believe it is necessary to help Soko, so I propose setting up a committee to offer suggestions. … Arthur “Spike” Hampson is on an adventure: “It’s the last day of June and I’m writing to you from the small city of Ipiales on

the Colombian side of the border with Ecuador. A little over a year ago, I bought a motorcycle and took off on a long trip that has consumed eight of the past 15 months. The motorcycle (which I’ve named Popeye) is a Suzuki VStrom 650 adventure model, outfitted with hard luggage boxes. All my plans remain indefinite but for one thing: I do not camp out, and if it doesn’t fit in the luggage boxes, it doesn’t come along. My target is Ushuaia at the southern tip of South America, but ever since the beginning of the trip, the target has been a moving one. I am trying to write as a regular thing during the trip, but in all other respects I have no schedule, no routine, and no obligations. Although traveling alone, in early June I did participate in a sort of group event involving six other solo motorcyclists, who averaged about ten presidential cycles younger than me: two Germans, two Frenchmen, a Kiwi, and a Mexican. We all had independently booked passage from the San Blas Islands near the Caribbean end of the Panama Canal to Cartagena in Colombia on a 110-year-old steel-hulled sailing vessel capable of transporting motorcycles on its deck. Unfortunately, the passage was canceled due to problems with customs officials, and so the seven of us ended up cooperating to implement a plan B. We rented a container that a scheduled ship carried from Colon to Cartagena


while we took regularly scheduled air flights. It all sounds very straightforward but most Americans are blissfully ignorant about the real meaning of the words paperwork and processing time. The ship took only three days to transport the motorcycles but we spent almost two weeks completing all the requirements to clear the cycles at both ends of the transit. I also have to tell you, when I was in the Cocora Valley near Salento, Colombia, the wax palms in this valley are the damnedest thing. They grow as tall as 200 feet; nothing else in this corner of the world even begins to approach such a height. Plus, they grow in the open where no other trees compete for sunlight or soil. So, the question is, how could Darwin’s theory of competitive advantage and natural selection possibly explain such extravagant height? Life is good. I move on only if I feel like it, and every time I hit the open road, I wonder why I didn’t feel like it earlier. Plus, Colombia is delightful, not just because of its astounding physical beauty and tremendously kind people but also because their team is through to the final sixteen.” … David Wright is having a completely different kind of adventure: “For the past four years I’ve been working on the restoration of the S/V William H. Albury. Once the flagship of the Bahamas, I found her demasted and for sale in the winter of 2013. After a month’s work on the boat, I could not reach agreement with the owner David Lindo on price; I cut my losses and left. The following winter, I got a call from David asking if I was still interested in the boat. After repeated assurances that the boat was as I had left her, I made a low ball offer of $10K. He accepted and that February, I got an experienced captain and reli-

able crew to bring the boat 90 miles to Port Antonio where we could haul her. On Wednesday, the three of us traveled to Montego Bay and got situated in a local motel. Thursday morning, we got our first look at the condition of things. The 14-foot wooden tender was upside down on the beach with a hole in her, motor long gone. We made deals with the Jamaicans who needed $20 for gas and took us out to the Wm. H. once, never to be seen again. The engine had not been run since my departure the year before. Controls were so rusted they disintegrated when we tried to free them. The entire engine cooling system needed to be removed and soaked in an acid bath. Stuffing boxes needed repacking. The foremast, although still standing, had had further deteriorated. Cabin tops were now beyond repair and in need of replacement. She had one battery and one bilge pump. Each time the battery went dead, water covered the sole (floor) of the boat; no longer salvageable. On Friday morning, I sent my captain home. That afternoon, I met with David Lindo and the ensuing conversation went something like this: Me: ‘I’m not giving you $10,000 for this boat. I’m not going to give you anything for it.’ Lindo: ‘Well, I have a $1,500 yard bill here. Would you consider paying that?’ Me: ‘I told you I won’t give you anything for her. I’m doing you a favor. She’s going to sink right here in Montego Bay.’ Lindo, looking up at me from his table: ‘Well, how about my bar tab?’ Me: ‘How much is that?’ Lindo: ‘About 200 bucks.’ Feeling like the dog that caught the car, I handed him the $200 from my wallet. After months of hard work and terrifying drives to Kingston for exorbitantly high-priced parts, I left Jamaica under power with a

captain and crew for Man-O-War Cay where the William H. Albury was built by her namesake, Uncle Will Albury. The Windward Passage lies northeast between Cuba and Hispanola. The trade winds always blow from the northeast. With the wind on our nose and our little four-cylinder Detroit diesel, it was slow going. Twenty-four hours into the trip, I asked Captain Zimmerman how far we had traveled. ‘Thirty miles,’ he replied. I then asked him how far we had to go. ‘About 800 miles.’ It was about nine days to Inagua, where we cleared Bahamian customs and then had a two-day layover on the north end for weather. With 30-knot winds we would have been going backwards. Then we went on to Clarence Town, the first place we could get fuel at a dock. The whole trip took us 26 days. I have been spending my winters since working on the boat in Man-OWar. There are photos and more info at www.facebook.com/ svWmHAlbury/. Diane, my girlfriend of 42 years, and I got married last December. She works from her winter home in Punta Gorda while I am on the boat. We spend summers in Massachusetts. Diane’s job allows her to work here in the summer; I spend my summers working on civic projects and traveling to music events in my 1928 Model A Ford which I have driven 483,000 miles in the past 58 years. See: tomspock.com/ Journey%website/Tour/index.htm. Our summer home is a tiny house 16 x 20 feet with a loft and a cellar in Barre, MA. I have three very grown and very successful children, seven granddaughters, and two grandsons ages 14 to 20.” … And in closing, there is me, Shy, “the black bull,” or whatever. I am still a part-time estate planning attorney and absolutely love it. Part time means I am now practic-

ing law in its purest sense and not “practicing money,” which happens when one is full time. My present full-time job is at the Irs, and is rewarding, in the Under Reporting Department. I especially like relaxing taxpayers with a little humor. Recently, a woman asked me if she could ask me one more question and I said no, she had used them all up—and she laughed. I was written up for this, but it was worth it and I continue on. Recently I attended my grandson Bradley’s bar mitzvah at the Middlebury Inn in Middlebury, VT. It had been almost 60 years since I had been at the inn, although my grandchildren and daughter Sara live close by. I brought Pearl up in a wheelchair van with someone to help me, and the weekend was a great success. Who said, “You never can go back”? I find I am doing that constantly. … And as class agent, I want to thank all for the very generous gifts to the Holderness Fund. This year, 10 gave and I really, really appreciate it. You guys are the best. We lost two loyal members, and you came through big time. … I almost forgot, my father took me upon graduation from Holderness on a Saguenay River trip, from the St. Lawrence to the Saguenay River. The trip started in Montreal at the Chateau Frontenac. I was too shy to talk to the student women from McGill University. Maybe it was caused by my father pestering me. But I did end up kissing a young damsel by the name of Skirmahorn, who was not a student. Great memory after 58 years. Must have been some kiss! That’s all folks. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Gerry Shyavitz ’60 g.shyavitz@comcast.net

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John Coles ’68 at his 50th Holderness reunion this June in a jacket he painted himself

John Coles ’68 in front of his work, helping to renovate the Holy Cross Cathedral in Boston, MA

John Cleary ’61 masking at his town’s Hot August Night with his homemade butterfly costume and hawking for the local master gardeners’ forthcoming Pollination Celebration

’61 Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you! Ray Wilson is enjoying retirement, spending as much time as possible in Bridgewater. “I regret missing the 50th reunion of my late brother Mark Wilson ’68,” he writes. “I was looking forward to meeting some of his classmates during alumni weekend and hearing from them.” Ray still would very much like to hear from some of Mark’s classmates. Please send


him an email at skypastures@ gmail.com. … Win Fuller reports, “We are very proud that our stepdaughter Emily (Evans) MacLaury ’96 has just been appointed director of health services at Holderness. We are looking forward to spending more time on campus now that my spouse Janet has retired from her 35-year position as head of the Science Department at Derby Academy in Hingham, MA. Also, we are very much enjoying ourselves now that we have moved to our Cape Cod house full time.” … John Cleary notes, “My life in Louisiana continues to be challenging and sometimes a little too interesting. Between our high heat and heavy humidity, fast

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dancing, full music, and juicy food, I now move on a new ‘axle’ (total left hip replacement) pain free. This new renovation, however, does not automatically mean that the rest of me remains painfree; arthritis now has crept into my knees, and I keep that at bay with drugs. So, I pretend that I continue to jump tall buildings in a single bound, am faster than a speeding bullet, yeah, yeah, yeah. Besides installing ponds, renovating pastures and fields, and pushing back the ever-encroaching jungle, I now hope to begin creating Van Gogh splashes of color in empty fields and buffer zones with wildflowers, similar to Lady Bird’s decoration of Texas roadsides and intersections. Although I could justify such endeavors ecologically, such as fostering diminishing pollinators, I simply and honestly just want to impact all of us momentarily with more vivid colors—taking our collective breath away. I hope that all of you are still having fun, splashing literal and figuratively big cannonballs in your own lives.” … John Holley thanks those in the class who donated to the Holderness Fund. “Candace and I have been busy,” he writes. “A three-week trip to Italy, Croatia,

Albania, Greece, Crete, Malta, and Sicily, was followed by a high school graduation, a Holley family reunion, and a college reunion. I’m tired just writing it all down. I was sad to hear about Don Henderson’s passing. Don was an inspiration to me both as a coach and a person. I will miss him.”

’62 Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you! John Swift and his wife Gretchen were honored in April for giving a substantial portion of their art collection to Holderness School. Their collection was the subject of the spring art exhibit in the Edwards Art Gallery and featured ceramic pieces by artists including Shoji Hamada, Bernard Leach, and Brother Thomas Bezanson. More information about the Swift Collection can be found on page 32.

’63 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Dave Hagerman ’63 david.s.hagerman@gmail.com



ToM b. McIlvaIn, Jr. ’63 rEcEIvEs DIsTInguIshED sErvIcE awarD The Distinguished Service Award is awarded to an alumnus/a in a reunion class, who through his or her devotion and dedicated service has significantly and positively affected the health and well-being of the school. This year’s Distinguished Service Award goes to a great friend of the school, who has had made vir-

tually a life-long commitment to this community. First, as a student, Tom embraced everything Holderness. Then, at age 30, just twelve years after graduating, Tom became a member of the Holderness Board of Trustees, one of our youngest members ever. On the board, Tom served during the school’s transition to coeducation and helped guide the leadership of the school from one giant, Don Hagerman, to another giant, Pete Woodward. Shortly after that service, two of his four children, Kate ’93 and Russell ’98, came to Holderness. Tom’s wife Claudia served on the board for 10 years, leading our campaign for the ’90s and helping to select the current head of school, Phil Peck, in 2001. Tom and Claudia’s legacy continues with their grandchildren, Laura Rinehart ’17, Stew Hutchinson ’18, Ben Hutchinson ’20, and now Russell Hutchinson ’22. There are potentially eight more grandchildren on the way!

’64 (reunion)


In early April, I visited Rick Hintermeister in Ft. Myers, FL. He is enjoying life after Irma, which did no damage to his house. Rick does some deep-sea fishing and traveling and maintains a tremendous number of gardening projects around his home. … June brought Terry Morse and his wife Anne Vitte back to New England for his 50th reunion at Middlebury. Between visits with Dennis Donahue ’62, Ki and Bill ’57 Clough, and others, we caught up with them and Jeff Hinman for a nice lunch in Hanover.

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Terry Jacobs ’65 haj3@jacobswyper.com

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Sandy Alexander ’64 salex88@comcast.net

“We are still splitting our time between Cape Cod and Sarasota, FL,” notes John Nessel. “I also continue to run my internet business (since 2002), selling restaurant software and related products, and providing financial

’66 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Peter Janney ’66 pj@apllon.com

’67 CLASS CORRESPONDENT John Pfeifle ’67 603.938.5981


John Swift ’62 at a Holderness School gallery opening that exhibited many pieces from John’s art collection that he recently gifted to the school

’69 (reunion) CLASS CORRESPONDENT Jon Porter ’69 jwoodporter@cox.net

’70 consulting to restaurants and other hospitality businesses. My youngest son, who has special needs, lives with us full time now, and my older son lives in New York City and works for Compass Group. I also have a daughter in the insurance business, who lives in Sarasota with her husband and two teenage girls.” … John Coles has just finished gilding angels for the Holy Cross Cathedral in Boston. “It is a major renovation and should be amazing when completed,” he says. … Ray Wilson ’61 is interested in hearing from his late brother’s classmates. If anyone has any memories to share with him about Mark Wilson, please email him at skypastures@gmail.com. CLASS CORRESPONDENT John Coles ’68 j.coles@rcn.com

Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you!

’71 David Taylor reports, “Deborah and I are now the proud grandparents of Ainsley, our son Joshua’s daughter. He and his wife, Tyler, now live in New York City while he attends Columbia Law School.” … Roy Madsen retired from the Comptroller of the Currency in February after nearly 40 years. He and Jean moved from Washington, DC to Williamsburg, VA to get away from the city and enjoy golf and their grandchildren, who are nearby in Richmond.

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A mini Holderness reunion with Terry Morse ’64, his wife Anne Vitte, Sandy Alexander ’64, and Jeff Hinman ’64

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Roger Clarkson ’71 roger@rogerclarkson.com

’72 I got a great batch of notes from some of you this time and am happy to share them with you all. … Chuck Kaplan reports that he is alive and well and living in South Boston. “I still work in the footwear industry and travel to southeast Asia quite often,” he writes. “You can find me in either Hong Kong or Saigon. My two sons are in the working world here in Boston, and my daughter is working on her doctorate degree in nursing at Columbia.” Chuck also says that he is in contact with Ted Coates ’70 often and is looking to seeing everyone at our 50th reunion in four years. Me too, Chuck. … Eric Haartz is a man of few words, but asks, “Is anyone else concerned with the velocity of life? I used to think it would ease up, eventually, but see no sign of that. Things are well in our family, even if there’s nothing exciting to report.” … David Nicholson writes that he and his wife, Suzie, are first-time grandparents. “My first grandchild, Hadley Joy, was born on


January 29, in Boston and is a perfect baby girl,” David says. “She is beautiful, good natured, and hardly cries, and is only 17 years away from Holderness. She already has a passport and is in Prague, as I write, for a wedding. As I’ve said many times, ‘If reincarnation is real, I want to come back as one of my kids.’” David’s son Scott, and his wife Kelsey, are expecting their first child in July. David also shares that he traveled to Colorado in August to cheer on his other son Bradley who participated in the Leadville 100 ultra-marathon. “Yup, I know. It’s unbelievable that my offspring ran 100 miles; I could barely make two laps of the football field,” he says. “Take away message: marry right! Best wishes to all as we transition to Medicare.” … The Circuit, formerly known as Gary, writes from Mexico that he is now known as Alex Circuit. “I live with my second wife Cecilia in Cuernavaca,” he says. “I have a real estate business, I breed golden retrievers, and I have a very successful Airbnb business.” Alex says he travels throughout Mexico looking for old furniture to sell in a store he owns. “My children from my first wife live in Acapulco and are doing very well,” he says.

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Alex remains in touch with our colleagues Stuart Porteous and Nat Mead. … Mark Rheault, who lives in southeastern Massachusetts, spends his time in Carver and Wellfleet. “One does not want to wish their life away, but I sure am enjoying retirement,” Mark writes. “I don’t know how I found time to work.” Mark’s daughter Jenn moved to Maine after getting her master’s in social work and is now working as a case manager for developmentally disabled adults. “Our son Greg and his wife Amye are visiting us in Wellfleet for two weeks with granddaughters Rosie (two) and Harriet (four months),” Mark adds. “He’s finishing up his PhD in executive leadership while working as director of housing at George Washington University. Life goes on, loving every minute. Laurie and I consider ourselves so blessed.” … As far as the Shepard family is concerned, my daughter Lisa, who lives in Denver, is engaged to her girlfriend, Heather, a schoolteacher. Before Heather, Lisa had three boyfriends, and none of them passed muster, in my opinion. But Heather is a really bright, beautiful woman, and I can tell that she and Lisa really connect, so we will be very happy to welcome her into the family. … Thanks for those of you who contributed, and I look forward to hearing from the rest of you the next time around. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Dwight Shepard ’72 shepdb@comcast.net

’73 Our 45th reunion was great! We had beautiful early June weather, and all events were back on campus for the first time in some years. It was good to see and catch up with Tom Carver, Peter

Garrison, Tim Scott, and Fred Savage. Unfortunately, Geoffrey Klingenstein and Morgan Dewey had to cancel at the last moment, but both had very good excuses. The 1973ers enthralled the younger classes during the campus tour, brewery tour, and class dinner with tales of the old campus, fort building, midnight kitchen runs, and the live chicken dinner on Outward Bound—that tale we had to prove with pictures from our yearbook. It seems that the later year’s crews got lasagna when they came off Solo! … Matt Kamarck sends greetings to all. After living the last few years in Tanzania, China, and the Philippines, he has retired to Marlow, NH. He was sorry to hear of Mr. Henderson’s passing, as were we all. Even though he did not like it at the time, Don’s US History course prepared him for success at university better than any other course at Holderness. Matt can be reached at nhmatayo@yahoo.com. Now that he is back state-side and very close to Holderness, hopefully he can make it back to our 50th reunion. … Henry Robinson-Duff also sent along a short note proclaiming that life is still good in Colorado. … As for my news, I find myself back in the working world, doing a couple part-time field biology jobs down this way, so life is certainly full. In June, I bugged out of reunion early so that I could hike the Franconia Range in preparation for a trip out West and some hiking/climbing in the Sierra Nevadas with my “western” son this September. I know that our 50th reunion seems a long way off, but I wrote the same thing about our 45th five years ago. Please put it on your longterm calendar. Maybe we can reserve a dorm just for our class. I also plan to send out personal notes to all of you for whom I


Henry Robinson-Duff ’73 and his son, Sean, hitting the rapids on the Arkansas River

have addresses but no emails (more than 50% of our class!). Please take a moment to connect with me and Holderness, so we can stay in touch as we move towards 2023. Best to all, Dick. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Dick Conant Jr. ’73 rconantjr@msn.com

’74 (reunion) CLASS CORRESPONDENT Walter Malmquist ’74 wmalmquist@kingcon.com

’75 My youngest graduated from high school in June and is heading off to the University of Vermont (UVM) in August, so I just started paying for her college tuition. I’m mowing lawns and fields, playing golf, biking, and driving the ambulance for MrVas in the Mad River Valley, while I wait for the snow to return. … I’ve heard from Ted McElhinny and John Putnam. Ted sent me a photo of him and Tom Cargill when they ran into each other at the Dallas airport, and John sent me a card stating that on his next trip through the area he might stop in

to the local flatbread pizza joint. John, you better stop by if you are in Waitsfield! … Pike and Linda Noyes have a new grandson, Henry Thomas Enos, born February 2, 2018. Linda reports, “He weighed 8.7 pounds at birth and was 19.5 inches long! His middle name, Thomas, is after his great-granddad, Tommy Corcoran!” … Ed Cudahy writes, “Hi, All. Summer is firmly here in the Rockies, as Denver hit 105 yesterday. I had lunch with George Fox last month when he came through Denver. He looks great. Susan and I are awaiting our fifth granddaughter next month. Still working like crazy!” CLASS CORRESPONDENT Mac Jackson ’75 skifarmer@live.com

’76 CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Charlie Bolling ’76 chasgolf7@aol.com Biff Gentsch ’76 biffgentsch@gmail.com

Standing with her siblings, Mac Jackson’s ’75 youngest graduated from high school in June and is heading off to UVM in August.

Tom Cargill ’75 and Ted McElhinny ’75, who ran into each other at the Dallas airport


Anne’s, and get out on the Chesapeake Bay or hiking in western Maryland whenever possible. We don’t own a sailboat, but sail with other people. I also do quite a bit of rowing, which I learned to do in college and have kept at pretty much since. As per the August 2016 picture with the Siegels in the spring 2017 issue of HST, Ariel and I, with or without our sons, do get to New Hampshire periodically and love to hike when we can. The last long hike James and I did was in 2016, when we hiked from the summit of Mt. Washington to Waterville Valley, about 35 miles, in a day. There were several miles downhill off the summit at the start, then it was up and down after that. Good times! Say hi to our classmates; sorry to miss the fun. Take care, Bob.”

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Peter Grant ’77 pete@grantcom.us

’78 Bob Biddle writes, “Luther, thanks for being the class agent/correspondent for our class for so many years. I regret being unable to attend our class’s 40th reunion weekend. Holderness has meant a lot to me as a home, a wonderful place to live, a great place to learn, and a school with many talented, inspiring people. As a brief update, my wife and I have lived in Annapolis, MD since 1992, when we got married. We have two sons, Sam and James, born in 1993 and 1995 respectively. They attended public school in Annapolis and both have graduated from college, Sam from William and Mary and James from UVM. Sam is dipping his toes in the legal waters, working in litigation support; James, who majored in forestry, works as an arborist for Bartlett Tree Experts in Maryland. Sam lives in Richmond and James in Baltimore. It is great to see children move forward in their life adventures. I continue to work as a criminal defense attorney in Baltimore, as I have since the 1990s. Ariel and I are active in our local Episcopal church, St.

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Luther Turmelle ’78 lturmelle@spc.global.net

’79 (reunion) We did not hear from too many of you. Feel free to send along a note for our upcoming news. I am working as a double agent (Class of ’90 and ’79). … Chug Sides writes, “I have a blog that I update about the first full week of the month. It is called ‘Wrestling with Why,’ and you can find it here:

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Fred Savage ’73, Tom Carver ’73, Dick Conant ’73 and Peter Garrision ’73 back on the Holderness campus for their 45th reunion this past June

chug80.wixsite.com/website. Check it out!” CLASS CORRESPONDENT Nina (Cook) Silitch ’90 (for her husband Michael Silitch ’79) ninasilitch@gmail.com

’80 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Greg White ’80 ggnh@aol.com

’81 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Bill Baskin ’81 william.baskin.law.90@aya.yale.edu

’82 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Chris Pesek ’82 cpesek@yahoo.com

’83 Facebook has been full of the Class of 1983, busy living their lives and tending to a growing group of college-bound children. My own daughter, Ella, is heading off to my alma mater, the University of Virginia, where she will be starting with their new religion, politics, and conflict general education forum. This made me think of all the heated conversations we had in our theology and religious studies classes at


Jon Craig ’86 and his wife Julie with their kids Ian and Alex

Holderness. I appreciated helpful advice from Jeff Rollins while making our college decisions. His daughter is a goaltender for Temple University’s women’s soccer team. … Rumor has it that Willie Stump will continue to hold up the Holderness flag in Seattle. … Nancy (Lane) Giles reports a visit from Jim Verheul to her home in Idaho to provide support and cheer during a period of convalescence. Jim was just passing through, and he stayed a week to help, which was much appreciated. … Also out West, Peter Hewitt continues to log many miles on his bike with fabulous photos from the Canadian Continental Divide and California hills (Thank you, Facebook). His daughter Lyndsay started at Ucla last fall. … Back East, Patrick Gilligan is spending the summer training for the New York City Marathon and trying to hike as much as he can. He’s also getting ready for a move to southern New Hampshire: “It’s about time to go home again!” … Tipton Blish

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reports, “Today I am writing from my spot in the principal’s office of a public middle school in Seattle, where I have been the principal for three years (and an assistant for two before that). I was a high school English teacher before that. Education seemed among the least likely paths for me in 1983. Indeed, I didn’t get to this one until 23 years later. (There was some journalism before that; and some ski bumming before that [by ‘some’, I mean five years in Taos].). But this is all ending in a month when we move to London for a couple of years. My wife Bridget’s work at Adobe is taking me and our two daughters (12 and nine) there. I am thrilled! As to the non-work parts of life, I have continued to ski quite a bit (at least for someone who has a full-time job in a city). We get over to Switzerland to see my mom annually, usually in the summer. I have been in Seattle since 1995, with a three-year sojourn to Los Angeles in the early 2000s. The only nonFacebook contact I have had with

Holderness people is seeing Willie Stump every now and then—even though we live about 20 blocks from each other. (This email is an attempt to remedy that in a passive-aggressive way.) Pete Barnum visited about three years ago during his trip through the Northwest—that was a treat. I hope this finds you well, and I appreciate very much, Jane, the shout out to Jerry Webster, whose beautiful mug appeared on that Holderness postcard that I assume many of you got last month.” CLASS CORRESPONDENT Jane (Randolph) Jensen ’83 jjensen@uky.edu jane2jensen@gmail.com

’84 (reunion) CLASS CORRESPONDENT Fred Ludtke ’84 ludtke4@gmail.com


’85 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Jean-Louis Trombetta ’85 jeanlouistrombetta@gmail.com

’86 Jake Reynolds checked in from Palo Alto, CA, where he and Robin have lived for the past 21 years: “Life is full with three kids, ages 16, 14, and 10. (When I read that previous sentence, I think it’s impossible that I am that old, but my grey hair reminds me that it’s true). There’s a bunch of Holderness folks in the Bay Area that I get to see, but not nearly enough. Hope all is well in the Class of 1986 land!” … Cort Pomeroy’s son Henry is going to be a freshman at the Groton School this fall. … Billy Clough writes in from Buffalo, NY. He and his wife Nannie are doing well. Their eldest son is a new grad from Hamilton College in Clinton, NY, and their other two kids are at Wake Forest University in North Carolina. … Katie (Kelley) Detmer reports from Texas: “My oldest boy is playing football at Texas a&M in Kingsville, and he is doing well. He is a quarterback and is looking forward to playing this fall. My daughter Katie will be a senior in high school, and she has been offered a scholarship to play soccer at Angelo State in San Angelo, TX. She has accepted and is excited to play college soccer. My youngest, Koal will be a freshman in high school. He too plays football and is blossoming into a nice little quarterback. He is also a great basketball player and loves to solve intricate algebra problems. He’s bringing up the rear in style! I’ve been a realtor for about a decade now, and I love it. When I’m not at ballgames and in stadiums, I am working with buyers

and sellers. The real estate market down here in Texas is hot, just like the weather! I still love to ride and run and hike. We are an active family!” … Ellyn (Paine) Weisel and Brett Weisel ’87 had a great afternoon in June hanging out with Craig Johnson ’87 in Orinda, CA. … Notes from Jon Craig: “Ian is 18 and just graduated from high school, and Alex, 15, just finished up his freshman year. Time is flying. Julie and I are well; we are coming up on our 25th anniversary this year! Julie just ran the Mt. Washington Road Race, and we get up to the White Mountains a few times a year. We’re still living in the flat lands down in Mattapoisett, MA, which is a great area. I’m still working in composites, now with my own company (GMt Composites) in Bristol, RI, which does about half marine work and half industrial projects. I still get on the water whenever possible, both fishing and sailing.” … Chip White writes, “We recently returned from a great trip to Italy. Our youngest, Wagner, had just finished a fifthgrade year dedicated to studying the Medieval and Renaissance periods, so we had a built-in tour guide. Allie (21) and Pamela (19) were routed through Brussels, where they got to hook up with Freddy Paxton ’85 for a night on the town. Thanks again, Freddy!” CLASS CORRESPONDENT Chris Zak ’86 chriszak@gmail.com

’87 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Kathryn (Lubrano) Robinson ’87 kathryn.robinson@gmail.com

’88 Erika (Ludtke) McGoldrick wrote, “Ali (Christie) Paysee

Brett Weisel ’87 and Ellyn (Paine) Weisel ’86 with Craig Johnson ’87

came to the states for a visit this summer, and she stopped by to see me. We had a wonderful time together, catching up on our lives and families (she has 3 children and I have 3 children) and reflecting on all the great times we have spent together. She still lives in Uruguay, and I still live on Hilton Head Island.” … Chris Stewart reports, “There’s been lots of good ocean entertainment this summer—waves, whales, sharks, dolphins, etc. The local music line up has been excellent as well. I’m still waiting for my annual beach sightings of Alex “Baja” MacCormick, Scott “Spo” Esposito, Brett Jones, Bruce Bohuny ’87, and Pixie (Spencer) Brokaw ’90.”… But Nina (Bradley) Smallhorn did make a quick visit with Chris “Stewie” Stewart in East Hampton: “Sadly, he got back to town the day I was leaving, but he filled me in on the reunion shenanigans! Good stuff!”… And finally, Steve Walker joined up with Emily (Adriance) Magnus and her daughter Liesl Magnus ’17 to run/climb the inaugural Chocorua Mountain Race in June. CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Alex MacCormick ’88 amaccormick@centerlanellc.com Steve Walker ’88 stevewalkeremail@gmail.com

Steve Walker ’88, Emily (Adriance) Magnus ’88, and her daughter Liesl Magnus ’17 joined up to run/climb the inaugural Chocorua Mountain Race in June.

’89 (reunion) Kim Gannett writes that she had a fun trip to Guatemala and Belize last month with her kids (Anika, 12; Asher, 12; and Zoe, eight), mom, and sister for Spanish language school. Luckily, they just missed the volcano that exploded three days before their trip! … Shields Day’s daughter Reeve arrived at Camp Huckins in Freedom, NH for two weeks of sleep-away camp to find out that her cabin counselor was Anna Weisel, daughter of Brett Weisel and Ellyn (Paine) Weisel ’86. … Brad Greenwood writes that he and his crew are doing just fine in Kittery, ME: “We had a great ski season, once again hitting our home mountain, Jay Peak, for a bunch of solid days. We also ventured north to Quebec to practice our Français (rusty at best…) and hit up the toboggan ride in Quebec City, as well as the ski hills at Mont Sainte Anne and Le Massif, both super fun hills. We also managed a winter stopover in Burke, VT to stay with Lindley (Hall) van der Linde and Tiaan van der Linde for a night, which was a hoot! I’m pretty sure Tiaan makes the biggest pancakes in Vermont!! This spring I went to Sweden for a Helly Hansen sales meeting and got in an amazing bike ride along the coast that took about six hours with one other

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Brad Greenwood ’89 with family—Megan, Cora Mae, and Charlie—hitting the slopes this winter

good friend. Cora Mae turns 10 and Charlie eight this summer, so we have some cake and candles going on. School finished up just in time for the hot days of summer. We have been riding bikes, playing at the beach, and getting on the boat to explore the coast of Maine. We are still involved in our sales jobs as territory managers in the outdoor sports industry, which keeps us more than busy, doing things we love, and seeing friends all around the country who do the same. I’m looking forward to the next reunion, although I am a bit concerned about how many years it has been since we walked down Chapel Lane together.” … Nina (Barker) Brogna writes that summer is off to a great start. The spear fishing has been spectacular—murky water but tons of fish. “Michael Brogna ’91 and I will be heading to Medellin for a wedding in late July,” she writes. “From there, we will head to Peru to hunt cinnamon teal. In bigger news, we are moving from New York City back to Boston after 23 years for me and five for Michael. We are excited to be closer to friends, family, marshes and fields!


We hope everyone is well.” … And last, hope everyone has our 30th reunion—Friday, May 31–Sunday, June 2, 2019—on their calendars. Looking forward to seeing lots of you soon! CLASS CORRESPONDENT Jen (Murphy) Robison ’89 jennifermrobison@yahoo.com

’90 Hello 1990 classmates; I hope you’re all having an amazing summer and up to great things! Please share them! This summer I had a chance to go for a mountain run with Nikki Kimball ’89. Nikki and I skied on the Nordic ski team together, coached by the one and only Phil Peck. She ran the Hardrock 100 this July—one of the toughest 100-mile endurance races in the world—and placed second for women and 17th overall. Nikki continues to help empower girls in sports and models grit, perseverance, and tenacity in sport and life. She was my inspiration when I got started in ultra-running after her win at the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc in 2007. … Amy Synnott writes, “It’s

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Nina (Cook) Silitch ’90 and Nikki Kimball ’89, both ultra-runners, heading up Lone Peak in Big Sky, MT

Alex (12) and Olivia (10), Amy Synnott’s ’90 kids, on their recent family trip to Montreal

been years, so I thought I’d send an update. I’m living in New York City with my husband and two kids—Alex, 12 and Olivia, 10. I’m working as the executive editor of Harper’s Bazaar magazine, where I oversee all the celebrity cover stories, artist collaborations, book coverage, and fashion features. On the side, I also oversee a lifestyle website I founded a year and a half ago called thebeautifuledit.com.”


CLASS CORRESPONDENT Nina (Cook) Silitch ’90 ninasilitch@gmail.com

’91 Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you!

’92 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Kelly (Mullen) Wieser ’92 kelly@wiesermail.com

According to deadline.com, “Friends From College star Nat Faxon is one of the high-profile guest stars set to appear in the fourth season of Sharon Horgan and Rob Delaney’s Catastrophe, along with Sex and the City’s Chris Noth, Logan Lucky and Phantom Thread star Brian Gleeson, In Living Color and The Carmichael Show’s David Alan Grier, and Happy Valley and Broadchurch actor Julie Hesmondhalgh. The show, which is produced by Last Week Tonight with John Oliver’s producer Avalon, in association with coproducers including Delaney’s Birdbath Productions and Horgan’s Merman, has recently been filming in Tunbridge Wells in the UK. Season four of Catastrophe is set to launch later this year on Channel 4 in the UK and on Amazon in the US. The show, which has picked up a raft of awards, including a BaFta for its writing and two Royal Television Society awards, has also been sold in 150 countries by Avalon’s international sales unit Avalon Distribution.”


Shannon Mullen ’97, Brud Folger ’56, and Evan Mullen ’00 at the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Lindsay (Dewar) Fontana ’93 linds_dewar@yahoo.com

’94 (reunion) CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Sam Bass ’94 samuel.g.bass@gmail.com Ramey Harris-Tatar ’94 rameyht@yahoo.com

’95 CLASS CORRESPONDENT John Farnsworth ’95 jpfarns@yahoo.com

’96 Emily (Evans) MacLaury has just been appointed as the director of health services at Holderness School. We look forward to having her back on campus! CLASS CORRESPONDENT Heather (Pierce) Roy ’96 heatherbpierce@hotmail.com

’97 Hi, All. Several issues of the HST have passed by without updates from our class, and I’m going to work on resurrecting them. For this go-around, AJ Schlech shared this update: “I’m living in Little Rock, AR. I’m a C-130 Hercules instructor in the Air Force and have a daughter Bailey (10), twin boys Jake and John

AJ Schleck ’97 and his family

(eight), son Ford (18 months), and a baby girl on the way in December! I hate that I missed the reunion, but as our family swells, the opportunities to travel seem to diminish at the same rate! I’m hoping to get to see former faculty Lew “Doc” Overaker at my little brother Peter Schlech’s ’05 wedding in the fall. Hope all is well!” … Shannon Mullen wrote in, “It’s a small world in sailing. After racing in the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta, one of our crew helped this guy set his anchor, and Evan Mullen ’00 found out he was a Holderness alumnus, Brud Folger, Class of 1956. The regatta is an unforgettable experience that always brings together an extraordinary crowd of some of the finest sailors in the world. It was pretty wild to find another Holderness alumnus in the mix. Who knows, maybe there were others! Brud told me Holderness absolutely changed his life, especially the personal guidance of Don Hagerman.” ... Andrew Miller writes, “I am in Hingham, south of Boston, and drive by Holderness most winter weekends to ski. My three girls (13, 11, and eight) all know to throw the ‘horns’ up as we drive by. There are a number of recent graduates and current students living in Hingham, so I see the blue H around quite a bit. I am traveling the country for work and hope to pop into some alumni events soon. I met a current parent and trustee on a

Dew Wallace ’98 competing in his newest passion, cowboy mounted shooting

recent flight and was reminded how warm and friendly the Holderness community is even when speaking to strangers.” ... Gabe Sherman was featured on nPr’s Fresh Air this July. Gabe spoke with Terry Gross about President Trump’s new appointee, White House Communications Chief Bill Shine, a former Fox News executive who has ties to the many Fox News lawsuits dealing with the sexual harassment claims. Gabe continued on to detail the ties with and influence that Fox News has within the Trump White House. Gabe currently covers the White House for Vanity Fair and is also the author of The Loudest Voice in the Room, a biography about Fox News president Roger Ailes, which made it to No. 9 on The New York Times Bestseller list. You can hear the interview and read the summary of the broadcast at www.npr.org/ 2018/07/12/628250994/journalistsees-almost-no-daylight-between-f ox-news-and-white-house-agendas. … Chris Day writes, “Those at the reunion last summer got to hear about my new business, Rock Stacker Kombucha. It is up and running and doing well! If you get a chance, like my

Facebook page and follow me on Instagram!” … On my end, it has been a whirlwind year with the birth of my sweet little boy, Peter, in September 2017. He is the source of endless laughs in our house. I’m about three months behind on sleep but love being a mom. I was disappointed to miss reunion, but Peter was about 10 days old. I hope this note finds you well, and I look forward to more updates from more of you in the future! Until then, Putney. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Putney (Haley) Wendell ’97 putneypyles@gmail.com

’98 Julia Fairbank writes, “Hello from Wyoming! My husband and I enjoy our small town life in Lander, WY. I’m a family practice physician’s assistant. I was sad to miss our 20th reunion this spring, but we had just gotten back from a trip to Iceland—touring in a campervan and skiing from a sailboat in the northern fjords.” … Last year Dew Wallace moved back to Massachusetts from California and loves being so close to family. He reports, “I now

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The Sampson siblings, Joe ’02 and Emily ’05, showing their Holderness love together on the Day of Giving Kerry Douglas ’02 and Andrew Pearce at their wedding in June with future Holderness Bulls, Sloane Leahy, daughter of Devon (Douglas) Leahy ’99; and Sam and Peter Fiumara, sons of Maddie (Rappoli) Fiumara ’02


Nina (DiBona) Pauk ’03 and Elizabeth (DiBona) Jusczyk ’98 live down the street from each other. Pictured are Delano and Delphine DiBona Jusczyk (Elizabeth’s son and daughter), and Clement Pauk (Nina’s son).

live in Norwell, MA with my two children, two dogs, two horses, and two goats! (Everything is better in twos.) When not with my kids, I work in media and marketing, providing services for folks in the defense industry. My biggest pastime has been competing in cowboy mounted shooting, an equestrian sport, combining my love for horses and marksmanship. It was great to see so many people at reunion and look forward to our 25th!” CLASS CORRESPONDENT Tara (Walker) Hamer ’98 taraphotography@gmail.com

’99 (reunion) Darren Moore reports enjoying his new obsession with the Rumney Pickle Ball League. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Brooke (Aronson) McCreedy ’99 brooke.mccreedy@gmail.com

’00 Juliet and Billy Bentley welcomed their second child, Ava Louise Bentley, on June 17, 2018. Their son Liam is very excited to be an older brother! CLASS CORRESPONDENT Andrew “Sully” Sullivan ’00 myireland20@gmail.com


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Jennifer Crane writes, “A recent work trip took me to Chicago, where I was able to catch up with Liz Norton. MJ Irwin and I hope to connect as well when she passes through Portland, which would make two Holderness Class of 2001 sightings in the same month! Other than that excitement, I continue to live in Portland, ME (now with a roommate, my black lab Mack), and I recently started a new job as the director of advancement at the University of Maine School of Law.” … Christine (Hann) Cunningham reports, “Aaron, the kids (Claire and Sean), and I are living on Haida Gwaii in British Columbia, and I am currently working as a high school physical education teacher and athletics director—a dream job, to say the least. My family reunited in Williamsburg, VA for Christmas this year, and we had a great time visiting Jarret Hann and Jessica (Ippolito) Hann ’03.” … Sophie Moeller just made a recent move, but only down the street. So if you are in Reno, stop by for visit.

CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Karyn (Hoepp) Jennings ’01 karynpjennings@gmail.com Adam Lavallee ’01 a.l.lavallee@gmail.com Sophie Moeller ’01 sophmoe@gmail.com

’02 Ramsay (Hill) Chodounsky writes, “My husband David and I are still living in Park City, UT with our dog Tippy. Dave went to the Olympics this year, and he was 18th in the slalom! I’m still teaching third grade at Park City Day School. We have lots of adventures coming up: a trip to New Hampshire and Vermont, and then a road trip to Colorado. I’m heading out into the Tetons with my mom on a horse-pack trip in August. We had a bummer of a winter, so my fingers are crossed for some snow this season.” … Joe Sampson reports, “Kait, Elodie and I are expecting our second child (a boy!) in early September. Before the big day, we are looking forward to attending Christopher Nielson’s wedding at Holderness in August. Until those major life events later in the summer, you can find the Sampson family playing at the lake and in


A scene from Ryan Kelly and Anna (Lockwood) Kelly’s ’03 wedding on Squam Lake in New Hampshire (roughly from left to right): Tara (Walker) Hamer ’98, Duane ’74 (EM) and Lori (EM) Ford, Jori Macomber (PEM), Sam Macomber ’11, Anna Macomber, Eliza Lockwood ’02, Emily Lockwood ’99, Willie Ford ’05, Martha Macomber (PEM), Lily Ford ’12 (EM), Sarah (EM) and Bruce (EM) Barton, Clark Macomber ’14, Kara (Herlihy) Young ’03, Hal Gardner (PEM), Julia Ford ’08, Dave Lockwood (PEM), John Lockwood ’03, Emily (Noyes) Grunow ’03, Blair (Weymouth) Monaco ’04, Kerry Douglas ’02, Rebecca Scott ’02, Mattie (Ford) DiNapoli ’04, Liza McElroy ’03, Channing (Weymouth) Warner ’02, Jay Connolly ’03, and Tyler Weymouth ’01

the mountains.” … Kerry Douglas married Andrew Pearce on June 16, in Stowe, VT with plenty of Holderness people in attendance. CLASS CORRESPONDENT Betsy Pantazelos ’02 b.pantazelos@gmail.com

’03 Tom Richards writes, “My wife Becky and I are living outside Chicago. We welcomed our third child (Lucy Poiema) on May 9, joining older brother Ransom (two), and big sis Penelope (four). I finished my MBa at Chicago Booth in 2015, and am working as a director of business operations at Fona International, trying to disrupt the flavor ingredient industry—lots of fun. I’m still playing lots of guitar and am dabbling in chicken farming. I dearly miss everyone; I’d love to connect if you ever find yourself in the Chicago area.” … Devin Hewitt recently moved from Boston to

Bangkok with his wife: “We are enjoying life in Asia, and I see Han Min Lee ’05 when I visit Korea for work. I hope to see any Holderness alumni if they find themselves in this part of the world!” … Nina (DiBona) Pauk reports, “I’m living in Exeter, NH with my husband Michael and son Clement, who is two and a half. We live down the street from my sister Elizabeth (DiBona) Jusczyk ’98 and her family. I’m loving watching our kids grow up together. Maybe one day they will all attend Holderness! I look forward to hearing what everyone else is up to these days.” … Anna (Lockwood) Kelly just married Ryan Kelly this past June on Squam, and there were far too many Holderness people there to list. Naturally a rousing rendition of hol-der-ness went right into “Quinn the Eskimo,” and into “Will the Circle Be Unbroken,” and into “Hymn 711”—all led by Willie Ford ’05. … Brendan Murphy says his decade in the desert has come to an end: “My

Holderness folks posed for a quick photo at the wedding of Anthony Febo and Carlie (Bristow) Febo ’06 this past June. Top row, left to right: Bo Surdam ’96, Tim Barnhorst ’00, Adam Bristow ’03, Andy Bohlin ’01, and Shawn Bristow ’97. Middle row: Drew Hodson ’16, Kate (Richardson) Surdam ’99, Blair (Thompson) Bruning ’06, Ashley (Currier) Trainor ’03, Katie (Bristow) Bohlin ’00, Tobi Pfenninger (EM), and Monique Robichaud (EM). Front row: Anne Richardson ’06, Molly Nissi ’06, Carlie (Bristow) Febo ’06, Anthony Febo, and Franz Nicolay (EM).

wife Etif, daughter Rhoda, and I will be moving to Dallas, TX in August.” … Jay Connolly has had all kinds of mini reunions lately: “It was great to catch up with Kara (Herlihy) Young, Emily (Noyes) Grunow, Liza McElroy and a bunch of other Holderness folks at Anna (Lockwood) Kelly’s wedding, which was coincidentally the same weekend as our 15th reunion. My wife and I enjoyed a few hours on campus with a great tour of some of the new buildings by Neal Frei. Also, it was completely random, but I ran into Chris Hiam ’02 in Marblehead— just so happened we were watching fireworks in the same place. I was with Pete Bohlin ’02 and lots of other Holderness people with Marblehead ties. All is well with us. Our son JB will be four in October, and daughter Rose is about nine months and doing great.” … Nick Leonard writes, “Jen Berkowitz and I were married in Aspen on July 14. We had a small crew of other Bulls in attendance: Adam Bristow, Sean Delaney, Carling (Delaney)

Bennett ’04, and Blake Barber ’01. I’ve been in Aspen for about two years now, after a long stint in the Vail valley. I own a ski and snowboard rental delivery business—Black Tie Ski Rentals— that services the four resorts in the Aspen area. The company is scattered around the majority of the western ski/snowboard markets with 15 individually-owned locations servicing 39 resorts. Adam Bristow owns the Vail/ Beaver Creek branch. Jen and I are also finalizing the purchase of our first home together in Carbondale; we close August 10. We’re settling down in the Roaring Fork Valley long-term and couldn’t be happier to call this incredible place home.” … Lastly, Neal Frei was “pumped to see some classmates at the 15th reunion including Amy (Laverack) Nordblom, Jay Connolly, Matt Sopher, Liza McElroy, Kara (Herlihy) Young, Cary Trainor, and Justin Ciampini. While trying to wrangle folks for reunion, I had a chance to connect with a few others.

FALL 2018 | holderness school today



Polly Babcock ’08 standing next to her photo work at a gallery opening in Denver, CO

Ariel Tatum is living in the Cayman Islands and works for a company that specializes in preventing financial crimes. Robin (Stefanik) Green regrets she couldn’t make reunion this year but hopes on making the 20th. She recently relocated for Foley, AL. I also reconnected quickly with Joel Bradley ’02—who was coaching a Nordic team and racing as well at the annual Cheri Walsh Eastern Cup at Holderness—and Alex Zancani ’02, who will be visiting New York City this October and hopes to see some familiar faces. It’s been a busy summer already for our class in milestones. I am sure I have missed one or two, but in addition to Anna and Ryan’s wedding in June and Nick and Jen’s wedding in July, Kara (Herlihy) Young married Ry Young in Essex, VT. Last by not least, Amy and Todd Norblom ’04 welcomed their second girl to the family, Payson Strong Nordblom, on July 12. I am sure we will see her on the trails soon. Thanks for keeping in touch everyone!” CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Nick Payeur ’03 ndpayeur@gmail.com Neal Frei ’03 nfrei@holderness.org nealfrei@gmail.com


Sumner Ford ’09 just can’t get enough of Holderness and came back to lead a group on Out Back this year.

’04 (reunion) CLASS CORRESPONDENT Ryan McManus ’04 rbmcmanus@gmail.com

’05 CLASS CORRESPONDENT Brie (Keefe) Healy ’05 brie.keefe@gmail.com

’06 Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you! Tai Haluszka writes, “I am currently the esl Department chair at Cardigan Mountain School, and I am lucky to teach with Kris Langetieg ’97. This is my fifth

holderness school today | FALL 2018

summer working with their Summer Session program, and we are excited to have a big Holderness crowd again: Hedi Droste ’14, Charlie Day ’15, and former teachers Bob Low and Hal Gartner!”

’07 In July, Kyle Baker played in the quadrennial World Lacrosse Championship in Israel as a member of Belgium’s national team. One of three team members without a Belgian passport, Kyle joined the team two years ago after following a branch of his family tree through his maternal grandmother, Mariette Dhaveloose. “You’re allowed four roster spots that don’t hold a passport to the country, but have lineage,” said Kyle, an assistant coach at the University of New England, whose full-time job is as a contractor for his father’s plumbing business. “My mother’s

mother was born in Belgium, and her family’s all from Belgium.” “More and more countries around the world are picking it up,” said Charlie Burch, the head coach at Une who also coached Kyle at Kennebunk High School. “So in the lacrosse world, it’s a big event.” Kyle ran his own lacrosse club in Maine for a year and became a high school assistant coach, first at Cheverus and then at Falmouth, before joining the Une staff in 2016. He said his ultimate goal is to become a full-time college coach, but he understands he needs to pay his dues and bide his time. The world championships were July 11–21. Organizers expected 46 nations from six continents to take part. The sport’s growing popularity means the 2022 world championships—in Coquitlam, BC—will be reduced to a field of 30 and will require regional qualification. “This will be the biggest world games in the history of international lacrosse,” Kyle said. “It’s going to be a once-in-a-lifetime deal.” (Excerpts taken from the Portland Press Herald) CLASS CORRESPONDENT Annie Hanson ’07 annie.e.hanson@gmail.com

’08 Polly Babcock reports, “After Holderness, I went to the University of Colorado, Boulder and studied photography while also competing on the backcountry ski team and intramural soccer team. Upon graduation, I moved to Brooklyn, NY to work with top fashion photographers, managing lights and digital files for companies such as Vogue and Victoria’s Secret. After four years in New York City, I moved back to my home state and got an apartment in Denver, CO. I currently own and operate a digital archiving


Pancho Apraiz Calderon ’10 atop Kilimanjaro this past June

business for photographers and gained my first four clients in the first year. I am also shooting new photo projects and have a studio in my basement.” … Craig Leach notes, “I am currently living in Boston and working at Nasuni—a data storage technology company—with seven St. Lawrence University alumni.” … Dan Marvin writes, “I’m living the dream in New York City on the Lower East Side, with the occasional trip back to the 603 to get some real air and smell fresh-cut grass. I still see a lot of the Class of 2008 down here, although we have lost Baird Meem to Boston. It’s a nice city up there, but I think she will regret it and be back soon. I had a great time at the Holderness 10-year reunion a few weeks ago and am already looking forward to 15.” … In July, Julia Ford was announced as the assistant athletic director and director of alpine skiing at Cardigan Mountain School. Cardigan hopes that Julia will create a strategic shift for their ski program, helping to coach their current athletes and to recruit committed alpine competitors.

’09 (reunion)

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Jessi White ’08 white.jessica.madigan@gmail.com

Erika Johnson recently became principal of Success Academy Bronx 1 Middle School, a grades five–six middle school in the

Allison Robbins is a fourth-year medical student at the University of Vermont. … Sumner Ford was back in action at Holderness helping lead an Out Back group. All reports say he was pretty awesome out there. … Steve Smith and Kaysie Smith were married on June 16, 2018 outside Bozeman, MT: “We had some great weather and were surrounded by a lot of wonderful people. Eric Wolcott ’06, Don Smith ’80, Jennifer Smith ’85, Bryce Connery ’03, Kelsey Smith ’07, Nicholas Smith ’07, and Connor Smith ’12 all made it out for the celebration. My uncle Don mentioned that there was quite the Bulls crew there and made sure we got a photo. Hope all is well.” CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Meg McNulty ’09 mmcnulty@mail.smcvt.edu Allison Stride ’09 astride@elon.edu


Tizzy Brown ’10 drove north from DC for a quick visit to her family’s cottage on Winnipesaukee in late July and gathered together a few 2010 alumni (left to right): Sam Copeland ’10, Tizzy Brown ’10, Jack Hyslip ’10, Morgan Markley ’10, Aubrey Tyler ’10 and Jack Saba ’10.

South Bronx: “I am incredibly excited about the opportunity to lead a school and work for a network of schools committed to changing and improving urban public education!” … Tizzy Brown continues to work in politics in DC and looks forward to working more in New Hampshire as the midterm elections approach. She was also just elected chair of the board for a series of overnight camps on Winnipesaukee, so she’s spending a lot of time on the lake these days. In fact, the last time she was up she pulled in a few 2010 alumni for a mini reunion at her family’s lake cottage on Winnipesaukee. Sam Copeland, Jack Hyslip, Morgan Markley, Aubrey Tyler, and Jack Saba all boated over to say hi. … Pancho Apraiz Calderon writes, “After working for two years in London in two investment banks, I came back to Madrid to pursue a master’s degree in finance (which I just finished) at the IE Business School. I will be joining BlackRock on July 22. For that I will be in New York City for two weeks and then will return to Madrid where I will be based. In the meantime, I have been travelling around; the best experience

so far was climbing Kilimanjaro last week.” CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Abby Alexander ’10 abigail.jane.alexander@gmail.com Ashleigh Boulton ’10 amayboulton@gmail.com John McCoy ’10 johnsmccoy92@gmail.com Em Pettengill ’10 ehpettengill@gmail.com Elise Steiner ’10 elisehsteiner@gmail.com

’11 Madde Burnham writes, “I have been living in Denver, CO and loving it. I am a software consultant traveling the country, but for the next year, I am in the Bay Area. Any Bulls who are out here, let me know! Weekends consist of skiing, skinning, mountain biking, and enjoying the local music scene.” … Amanda Engelhardt is still working in Boston at the same startup she’s been at since college graduation (founded by a fellow Holderness grad). She loves

FALL 2018 | holderness school today



Axi Berman ’13 atop a 1973 ambulance, towing a 1957 Shasta camper that has been converted into a state-of-the-art recording studio used for filming Culture Hustlers

The ties between Holderness and Cardigan are strong! Working at Cardigan Mountain’s Summer Session this year were former Holderness Athletic Director Bob Low, Hedi Droste ’14, Tai Haluszka ’06, Kris Langetieg ’97, Charlie Day ’15, and Hal Gartner (PEM).

seeing all of the other Holderness alumni in Boston.

Sam Macomber ’11 samuel.macomber@gmail.com

CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Cecily Cushman ’11 cncushman@gmail.com

Jamie McNulty ’11 jamcnulty20@gmail.com

Amanda Engelhardt ’11 amanda.engelhardt29@gmail.com


’12 Peter Ferrante notes, “I landed the admissions job at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School!” … Stephanie

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Caleb (Nungesser) McDermott ’13 in studio

Symecko writes, “I transferred to Austin for work last year, and I love living here, so I’ve decided to extend my assignment for another year! I also travel back East to our headquarters in New Hampshire pretty often, so I enjoy getting to see some Holderness faces whenever I’m there.” … Samantha Cloud is still in Boston working at HubSpot “and living for the weekend! I’m moving to Southie in a few months and spreading the Holderness School love.” … Sara Mogollon reports, “We rebranded as a company to actIVate, and I was promoted to the position of brand partnerships manager. The last two brands I’ve worked with are Barilla and Travelers Insurance.” CLASS CORRESPONDENTS Matthew Kinney ’12 mnkinn12@gmail.com Alex Leininger ’12 alexbleininger@yahoo.com Kristina Micalizzi ’12 kmicalizzi08@gmail.com

Stephanie Symecko ’12 ssymecko@gmail.com

’13 Libby Aldridge has been busy. “This past year,” she reports, “while finishing my masters of public health degree in health policy at Tulane, I worked at 504HealthNet, a nonprofit association of 60 federally-qualified health centers in New Orleans. There I was researching policies from other states that promote health equity, advocating for the implementation of those policies in Louisiana, and connecting New Orleanians to health insurance and primary care providers. This fall I am excited to begin my masters of science in nursing at Johns Hopkins.” … Macy Jones graduated from the University of Denver with a BS in psychology with a concentration in cognitive neuroscience, a secondary major in Spanish, and a minor in biology. This summer she is a field instructor at Telluride Academy in Telluride, CO.” … Axi Berman writes, “I help produce Culture Hustlers, a multimedia look into


Amanda Engelhardt ’11, Emily Starer ’11, Emily Hayes ’11, and Madde Burnham ’11 had a reunion in Aspen, CO, during Highlands’ closing weekend!

the artists, performers, writers and designers on a journey from side hustler to entrepreneur. We’re mapping the entire US culture sector, by sharing stories and advice through podcasts, doc-ushorts, field reporting and pop-ups. Please, check out our content on www.Culture Hustlers.com and reach out to me if you are interested in getting involved or know someone who should be featured!” … Dylan Arthaud reports, “I’m in Los Angeles working at the Performance Science Institute at the University of Southern California. My brother graduated from Usc in 2017, and we swapped places. He’s now in Vermont and I’m in L.A. After Holdy, I went to Middlebury and then transferred junior year to Connecticut College (shout out to Nicky DellaPasqua and Michael Finnegan). We have a new chocolate lab puppy, Teddy, who joins our pug, Ella. Miss you guys, sorry to have missed the five-year!” … Jeff Hauser just finished up his first two of four rotations with GE Healthcare, working in Milwaukee: “My next rotation is taking me to Phoenix, so I’ll gladly take suggestions on things to do!” … In February 2017, Caleb (Nungesser) McDermott and two Boston University colleagues

Sarah Bell ’13 and Jesse Ross ’13 Michael ’14 and Jonathan ’14 Swidrak during their commissioning into the Army, accompanied by retired Army Green Beret Jim Steiner, parent of Elise ’10 and Erica ’12

founded Involved, a civic engagement software for local government. “Today, Involved is utilized nationally by small towns, large cities, state representatives, and more,” he notes. “I’ve also been signed with 1KG Brand, a Boston-based entertainment label, since 2015. Music and entrepreneurship have become full-time commitments! I also changed my last name from Nungesser to McDermott, my late mother’s name, a couple years ago.” … Jesse Ross writes, “Sarah Bell and I have been friends for over eight years now! We are all thankful for a great reunion this past June. It was a blast. Highlight: Andrew Zinck lost a 1v1 basketball game to Axi Berman. I am looking forward to listening to Caleb McDermott’s new music this year and visiting Peter Saunders while he is teaching at Holderness. Go Bulls!” … Jake Barton is teaching in China this summer. He started in June and is living in Tianjin, a port city near Beijing. He is digging the food there! CLASS CORRESPONDENT Kelly DiNapoli ’13 kelldinap@gmail.com

Cole Donovan ’16 pitching for the Winnipesaukee Muskrats against the North Adams Steeple Cats

’14 (reunion) We heard from Jim Steiner, parent of Elise Steiner ’10 and Erica Steiner ’12, about Jonathan and Michael Swidrack: “I participated in the commissioning of the Swidrak twins at Rochester Institute of Technology. It was a great day for these two young men! They have done well in college and rotc. Now it is on to the Army!” … Rebecca Begley graduated from William Smith College this spring. She was selected for the Varsity College Hockey Club first team for women’s hockey and is currently attending Mass

General School of Nursing. … Corey Begley graduated from Maine Maritime with a degree in international business and logistics and is currently working for Lonza. … Zak Harmon has been in Nevada since August 2017, pursuing a career in solar energy. He is a solar broker in Las Vegas and has already been featured a number of times on local news sources. See www.youtube.com/ watch?v=qEksJOnXCUo&t=780s for his latest interview. CLASS CORRESPONDENTS CoCo Clemens ’14 conner.clemens@hws.edu

FALL 2018 | holderness school today



Recent alumni Ben Jerome ’18 and Morgan Sawyer ’18 posed for a quick photo during the annual Cheri Walsh Eastern Cup—a Nordic ski race hosted in honor of alumna Cheri Walsh ’88.

Holten Flinders ’17 with his friend Trey during their 40-day bike trip along the West Coast

Yifu Mu ’18 and Tom Anthony ’56, who ran into each other in the airport while transferring flights in Lisbon


Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you!

Want to connect with your classmates? Consider becoming a class correspondent and encouraging your classmates to reconnect in the HST class notes. Contact us at alumni@holderness.org for more information. Thank you! Cole Donovan reports, “This summer I have had the opportunity to pitch for the Winnipesaukee Muskrats, a local summer league baseball team under the New England Collegiate Baseball League. Not a bad way to spend the summer!”

A snapshot of Ian Casey (EM) and Kelly (Pope) Casey’s (EM) wedding this June. Holderness Bulls in attendance included: From left to right, top row: Carol Dopp (EM), Peter Noyes ’79 P ’08 ’11, Charlotte Noyes ’11, Julia Ford ’08, Annie McClements (PEM), Holly Lorms, Leigh Anne Connors (EM), Colleen Finnerty (PEM), Kelly (Pope) Casey (EM), Ian Casey (EM), Kim Merrow (EM), Kristen Sheppe, Chrissy Lushefski (EM), Nicole Bartlett (EM), Elizabeth Wolf (EM), Kelsey Berry (EM), and Meredith Houseman (EM). Front row: Tyler Cabot (EM) Beckett Noyes ’08, Hal Gartner (PEM), Nick Laurence (EM), Conor O’Meara (EM), Michael Carrigan (EM), Andrew Sheppe ’00 (EM), and George Negroponte (PEM).

Tess O’Brien ’14 tmobrien@uvm.edu Samuel Paine ’14 sfpaine@gmail.com Garrett Phillips ’14 gwphil14@stlawu.edu Elizabeth Powell ’14 epowell@conncoll.edu


This spring, Holten Flinders and his friend Trey embarked on a roughly 40-day bike trip from Missoula, MT to Seattle, WA and down the West Coast. You can read about their adventures here: usonabike.wordpress.com/.

Lily Hamblin writes, “I’m loving Endicott and had a great fall term in Perusia, Italy. I am interning at an elementary school in Marblehead this fall.”

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Elizabeth Johansson ’17 ecjohansson17@gmail.com

CLASS CORRESPONDENT Hope Heffernan ’15 hheffer1@villanova.edu

Congratulations to the Class of 2018, our newest Holderness alumni, who graduated this spring! We all look forward to hearing from you and about you in many future HSTs.

Stephen Wilk ’14 802.786.2255



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Yifu Mu writes, “In May, on my way back from a year abroad, I was transferring flights in Lisbon and met Tom Anthony ’56. We had a great conversation; it was really cool.” … Bella Smith was one of 12 New Hampshire students to receive a scholarship from local Dunkin’ Donuts business owners. Since 1995, Dunkin’ Donuts business owners in New Hampshire have provided more than half a million dollars in scholarships to honor the dedication and accomplishments of student leaders in their communities. Bella plans to study culinary arts at Johnson and Wales University.

at this point in time

Letters to the Headmasters of Holderness

A glimpse at Headmaster Edric Weld’s correspondences that are held in the Holderness Archives

by LiEsL MagNus ’18 Consider for a moment the letters, trinkets, photographs, and small scraps of paper that you save. What stories do they tell? Is there anything you haven’t saved that now is lost? At Holderness School, we are fortunate to have a collection of letters in the Archives, alphabetized neatly by last name and sorted by the headmasters who received them. ey too tell a story—about the school, about the headmasters, about the times in which they were written. e earliest collection of letters in the Archives are addressed to Edric Weld. Headmaster from 1931–51, Edric often received correspondences from former students,

written on Navy and Army stationary and sharing news from World War II. One such letter was from Jock, who was stationed on an unknown ship and posted his letter during his shore leave in Norfolk. He talked about his time in training, how he had thought that living in the dorms at Holderness had made for poor sleeping, but how living in barracks with fifty other men was an entirely different game. “If the [Holderness] boys complain about inspection,” Jock wrote, “you might tell them that here we clean every part of the barracks each day including waxing floors. Saturday, for Captain’s inspection, we are even cleaner and brighter to the extent of polished brass door knobs…And if they don’t like some laundry

charges, you might offer pails, hot water, and lines so that they could do their own.” With the war over, the letters addressed to Edric’s successor, Headmaster Don Hagerman reflect a world getting on with the business of living. Letters to Hagerman, who served the school from 1951–77, come from all over the world; one alumna wrote from the coast of Wales where he was vacationing with his family, another wrote from California where he was attending graduate school in San Francisco. Another letter, written in 1973, came from a former student stationed at Greenleaf Hut on the shoulder of Mt. Lafayette in New Hampshire’s Franconia Notch. e author of the letter wrote about his decision to leave


at this point in time

Rik Clark ’48 at his 70th Holderness reunion. Rik is a faithful writer to Head of School Phil Peck.

Holderness for Kearsarge Regional High School. He admitted that perhaps he was not ready for Holderness but credited the education that he received there for preparing him for the University of New Hampshire (uNH), and later for Dartmouth College. Don Hagerman’s files are also full of requests for transcripts and recommendations from dozens of students, looking to apply to graduate programs, jobs, mentorships, and more. Other letters are deeply personal and contain exchanges between heads of school and old friends and close family relations. ere are also letters that are critical of Holderness, but in a way that suggests that the people writing care deeply about the school and want to push it to be better. A letter from a female student in 1976 criticizes the gender divide at Holderness: “It is not a school for girls, nor does the school want them… Holderness school for boys is good, but Holderness School for boys and girls would be better.” Another letter from 1973 criticizes the tendency of the Holderness curriculum to cre-


ate a bubble, and once released from that bubble, “many students realize and resent the fact that many of these priorities and standards that they learned are indeed narrow and do not apply to society at large.” It is interesting to ponder how Don Hagerman might have reacted to these letters. Did they weigh heavily on his mind as he considered the last decisions he made as head of school? Did the feedback find its way into discussions with other administrators and faculty? Did the person who chose to save these letters for the Archives foresee the changes Holderness would undergo only a few years later? While the collection of letters from Hagerman’s era more often includes one-time exchanges with colleagues, students, and friends, the collection of letters from Pete Woodward (headmaster from 1977–2001) includes dozens of folders, each containing multiple letters from and to other heads of schools, indicating professional and personal relationships that spanned decades. ere are also entire folders dedicated to his correspondences with both Donald Hall, the 14th Library of Congress Poet Laureate, and Robert Creeley ’43, a Poet Laureate of New York State. eir letters are filled with poems and plans to meet for a meal. ey refer to gifts of books to each other and from Pete Woodward, invitations to speak at Holderness both during assemblies and at Commencement. While many of the letters are missing replies and prequels that would provide context and complete the stories, they reveal sincere friendships and care for each other. Most recently, there are the letters written to Head of School Phil Peck, who became the head of school in 2001. Missing are the handwritten and typed letters of previous generations. In fact, there are no files for Phil’s correspondences in the Archives at all. is makes tracking them down a bit more difficult, but also entertains an interesting question: in a world where countless files can be saved on a computer the size of a hard-cover book, how do you tell what is valued, what is important?


After Holderness made the decision to transition to eight-man football earlier this year, Phil received countless emails from parents and alumni, sharing their memories of playing football at Holderness. A parent of a Class of 2000 graduate talked about how “at program, and Norm Walker, changed the direction of our son’s life.” An alumnus from the Class of 1992 remembered fondly his years playing under Tom Eccleston and Norm Walker. Many expressed gratitude that the program was continuing, albeit on a smaller scale. Phil, too, has alumni and friends with whom he regularly corresponds. Rik Clark ’48 is one of those faithfuls who makes it a frequent goal to be at his desk writing by 5 aM. His positive correspondences often include reflections on Holderness School Today (which he reads cover to cover. Hello, Rik!). After a photograph of Loys Wiles appeared in the magazine, Rik was quick to write with his fond memories of this Holderness icon. Red Sox updates, memories of hiking in the White Mountains, and Holderness campus historical lessons are included in his letters as well. From wartime to peacetime, from personal to professional relationships, from individual reflections to critical feedback about the school, the stories are rich and varied. Recorded in letters, the authors found these moments in time important enough to share. •










r Commencement 2018