70 Stories - ISB Alumni celebrate the 70th anniversary of ISB

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ISB Alumni 70 Stories A Foreword by Harriett Gething 2021 for me signaled for me, as it has for so many before, an exciting, nerve wracking move to beautiful Thailand. Exciting; as I was offered the opportunity to be ISB’s Director of Marketing, Communications and Alumni; nerve wracking, as almost immediately I was to put to work devising ways to mark this venerable educational institution’s 70th anniversary year. When, in normal times, parties, reunions and get togethers would be fitting tributes, instead, we have had to be creative with virtual pieces of communication, a tree planting on campus and at the Environmental Wilderness Campus, and a promise that we will all be together as soon as this pandemic allows! The idea for this book was borne out of one of the discussions Harold Albert, Alumni Coordinator (and retired, nearly 40-year veteran Math teacher, Assistant Athletics/Activities Director, Coach and current IASAS Conference Administrator) and I had, as he very kindly offered to get me up to speed with what’s been happening at ISB for the last 70 years. It’s quite the introduction to a school’s history when delivered by a man who has an entire field named for him, not intimidating at all! However, I soon realized why he is called ‘The Legend’ - he’s the colleague you’ve always wanted to work with, the coach who inspired you to glory in IASAS, the Math teacher who got you through Algebra painlessly, the cherished friend you’ve had on speed dial for the past 40 years. He is a human catalog of a thousand stories - about students, alumni, staff and friends of the school - the wonderful human connections made in a school where students always come first. It felt obvious for him to collect 70 stories from alumni (students and staff) - 70 snapshots of times at ISB that created memories to

cherish forever. I know, for some people, it signified a flashback to being assigned homework by Mr. Albert and I hope that didn’t fill them with ‘deadline dread’ and possibilities of Mandatory Study Hall! Whether it is tales of snakes in Soi 15, school being closed during the Gulf War, Pancho’s tacos, memorable IASAS matches, something called ‘The Big Stick’ (answers on a postcard please, I am still none the wiser!) or ‘How I met your Mother at ISB’ love stories, it has been a real privilege to read your stories and it is clear how much this school means to so many people and the lasting impact it has had on so many lives. Even in my short time here so far, I feel that inimitable Panther warmth, care and commitment every day and I am so glad that we can share these stories with you. Perhaps it will ignite even more happy memories of your own. Finally, a full disclaimer. There are more than 70 stories in this book. Don’t place the blame on retired Math teacher Harold, he can indeed count, but we just felt that each one of the following stories were worthy additions to the collection. The look on his face when I suggested a bit of artistic license was totally worth it. Kob khun mak ka! Thank you to everyone who contributed to this book and a special thanks to Harold Albert for bringing this to life. Happy 70th Birthday, ISB! Harriett Gething, Director of Marketing, Communications and Alumni.


As a soon to be alumnus after 30 years at ISB, in addition to being a proud parent of four ISB graduates, Mr Albert asked me to contribute a story for ISB’s 70th anniversary.

Dr. Andrew Davies Dr. Andrew Davies is the current Head of School at ISB. He originally came to ISB in the second semester of the 1992-93 school year as a replacement English teacher in the high school. From there he became the English Department Head, Assistant Principal, Principal, Deputy Head of School, and now the Head of School, quite a journey indeed! And along with way he also found the time to coach both girls’ soccer and boys’ rugby. In fact, his promotion of the sport of rugby was instrumental in making it a full-blown IASAS sport in 1998. As you will read, he is the father of four ISB alumni: Alexandra (class of 2005), Stella (2010), Paddy (2012) and Owain (2014). His wife, Gaby Geneser, has also been a high school Spanish teacher and Department Head at ISB for over two decades.

Actually, our family may hold the record for the collective number of years at ISB - with 30 from me, 26 from my wife, Gaby Geneser, and 50 from the kids - Alexandra, Stella, Paddy and Owain. That makes a grand total of 106 Panther years! Although I have many stories to share, the message I really want to give is how special ISB is and what a positive influence it has had on thousands of students since 1951. Every school has an ethos, and this represents the collective best efforts of hundreds of outstanding educators, supportive parents, our unrivaled Classified Staff, and a globally minded student body of over 60 nationalities. The ethos at ISB is unique and I would describe it as welcoming, caring, supportive, appreciative, international and spirited. Kids learn better and become better people when they are surrounded by good positive people that care. I will leave you with the words of Howard Gardner that have always inspired my journey as a school leader. “I want my children to understand the world, but not just because the world is fascinating and the human mind is curious. I want them to understand it so that they will be positioned to make it a better place.” I believe that the ISB ethos embodies these words and I will always be proud to have been a part of this great school.



Chuck McAndrew As part of our 70th anniversary celebration at ISB, we are aiming to focus on interesting stories from the entire seven decade period. The first of these stories highlights a feature on an alumnus who was part of the school’s first graduating class in 1957, Chuck McAndrew. Chuck came to Thailand In February of 1956 after his father was given an assignment as the Property Management Officer for the United States Operations Mission (USOM) in Bangkok. This was not his family’s first overseas posting as the McAndrew family had formerly lived in Burma and Pakistan. His family home during that time was on Soi Phrom Phong (Sukhumvit 39) in the Bangkapi area of Bangkok, and he and his sister started school at the International Children’s shortly after settling in to Bangkok.


We started school in 1956 at the International Children’s Center. I was in the 12th grade at 17 years old and my sister was in the 4th grade at 9 years old. This was an open school where all of the rooms faced an open hallway. I really enjoyed the school and when it was time to graduate, the Principal, Mrs. Isabella Porter, felt that it was time to rename the school the International School Bangkok as it would look better on our diplomas. She was very strict but fair.” “We had some fun times in Thailand. We took a trip with a bunch of kids and parents to Saraburi where there were mountains, waterfalls, and swimming. Many of us had parents who belonged to the Royal Bangkok Sports Club, a swanky club with a large pool. I really enjoyed cruising around Bangkok with diplomatic plates on our car. At that time, Bangkok had many open klongs right along roads. My father was once forced into a klong by a road hog. We had an office car with a chauffeur at our disposal while our car was being repaired.” “I can recall Madame Gutman, our French teacher born in France, often arriving late for teaching our class. She would simply drive her car with diplomatic plates right across the grass and right up to our classroom to park. All of the boys in her class simply adored her. She was so cute and an excellent teacher! My English teacher was not happy with my English and graded me down. You see, my family had been assigned to Commonwealth countries and we had lived in Rangoon, New Delhi, and Karachi. I learned to spell and use strictly British words and spelling. This got me into trouble with the English teacher.” “Life was really easy. We had a cook, a maid, and a gardener. You could buy a Pepsi and a cup of rice with chicken for the equivalent of five cents each from a bicycle vendor. We had a lovely house with a 3-car garage. The house was huge! It was not unusual to see water buffalos walking past our house. We also saw some snakes in the area.” “I graduated from the first graduating class of ISB in 1957. There

were six kids in class: besides me, there was Jim Gardner, Dan Harris, Barbara Harris (no relation to Dan), Janet Hoherz, and Patricia Adams. We all got along just fabulously. My best buddies were Bill Brink, Jim Gardner, Bob Jacobs, George Ellis, Gloria Sun, Vina Martin, and Freida Faber. When I started at Georgetown University, they asked me what my class ranking was. I was proud to say that I graduated “sixth” in my graduating class. They were impressed!” “In order for me to begin college, my mother, sister, and I left Bangkok in May 1957 for the states. We flew to Rome and began a 30-day trip all through Western Europe ending in London. In Southampton England, we boarded the SS United States luxury liner for NYC for 5 days first class! My Dad remained until his assignment was over in early 1958.” “I loved traveling overseas. Ironically, I worked for the U.S. State Department and the U.S. Information Agency but was never sent on a foreign assignment. My goal is eventually to revisit most of these places again.” The entire ISB community is so pleased to have a connection with Chuck McAndrew and thank him for allowing us to highlight his time at ISB. It is quite interesting that while the school in 1957 was called the International Children’s Center, it seems that the diploma that Chuck and his fellow graduates received said International School Bangkok, as the official name was not changed until the following year when the International School Association (ISA) was formed and the school was officially recognized by the Thai Government.


Melissa Gecolea Melissa Gecolea is an ISB alumnus from the class of 1988. Her family’s overseas postings allowed Melissa to live in both Thailand and Italy as well as the Philippines, and has made Melissa a true third culture kid. After ISB Melissa attended Radford University studying journalism, and this course of study has allowed her to be a newscaster, reporter, producer, writer and broadcast journalist in the UK, the Philippines and Hong Kong. She is currently the news anchor for TVB News at 7:30 in Hong Kong, as well as the host and supervising producer of her show, Money Matters. Melissa has stayed connected to her ISB classmates, and has been a main organizer for a couple of very successful class reunions. This story is a distillation of a video that Melissa made regarding her time at ISB.

I think what made attending school at ISB so special was the shared experience we had as students in the international community growing up as true third culture kids. We were not growing up as our parents had in our countries of origin, nor were we living as locals in Thailand. It was a privilege to have our own cultures at home, the Thai culture outside, and the diverse cultures of our international school classmates at ISB. This diverse upbringing created a special bond that is very strong to this day, some 30+ years after high school graduation, and makes my friendships from my time at ISB so exceptional. Indeed, my friends from ISB are still amongst my best friends in the world.

friends who are worried about raising their children in an overseas environment. As someone speaking from personal experience, I tell them not to worry at all about that. Kids are resilient, and at the end of the day they will only appreciate the opportunities that come to them growing up as third culture kids. I certainly feel blessed to have had the opportunity of growing up in different parts of the world. With this I would like to wish ISB and the entire ISB community a very happy 70th anniversary!

At ISB, we had some incredibly unique opportunities, not the least of which were the IASAS events (sports, cultural convention, MUN) that many of us were fortunate to have participated in. I’d guess that less than 1% of the world’s population is able to take part in such activities, and these special activities not only allowed us to display our talents, but also allowed us to come in contact with other students from five other international schools in the region. I personally participated in IASAS Dance, and the special bond we had as an ISB IASAS team, and the bonds that we made with the other IASAS participants, was truly inspiring. These extraordinary moments further allowed us to strengthen the bond that we all have with International School Bangkok and with each other. As I look back on my time at ISB, I realize how lucky I was, and how lucky my friends and classmates were, to have had the opportunity to grow up the way we did. These circumstances cannot be replicated, and as an adult I can look back and truly appreciate the great fortune I had to grow up in Thailand in the 80s, it was a great privilege that my friends and I share and is something that has allowed me to be the person I am today. Today I am currently living and working as a news broadcaster in Hong Kong. Here in Hong Kong I have a number of ex-pat



SongYi Baek SongYi Baek attended ISB for seven years starting in 1997. She graduated in 2004. Best known for her exceptional musical talent, SongYi’s ISB story is an especially uplifting one as she relates how the kindness of two of her teachers allowed her to stay at ISB.

I attended ISB from 1997 and graduated with the Class of 2004. During those seven years, I was truly blessed to have met some of the most kind, inspiring and exceptional friends, teachers and school administrators and staff, many of whom I still keep in touch with. The most unique thing about my time at ISB is the fact that I lived with two ISB teachers and their families during my high school years. It is this story that I want to share. After my middle school graduation in 2000, my Korean family and I had to return to Korea due to my father’s work assignment. The Korean school system was starkly different from the one I was used to in ISB. I also quickly realized it would be very difficult for me to find a sense of belonging in Korea. It was my former choir teacher, Ms. Louise Guthleben, who helped me return to ISB. She offered me a place to live with her family and arranged for me to receive a scholarship from the school by making me a school accompanist. To this date, my heart is filled with infinite gratitude for Ms. Louise’s help. When Ms. Louise accepted her new job in Cairo, Egypt, she found a new ISB teacher who was willing to take care of me until I graduated from high school. Mrs. Susan Chandler, my former math & science teacher, became my new guardian and a second mother. She was like Sandra Bullock in the movie ‘Blind Side’, who showered me with opportunities to develop my musical talent and provided a safe home filled with love. I am truly grateful to have spent my important adolescent years with Susan, her husband Al and their beautiful daughters, Virginia and Sierra.


I cannot imagine what my life would have been like if I had not met teachers like Ms. Louise and Susan. Because of them, I always remember to be kind and generous to those who are in need of help around me. My life is a living testimony that ISB is a place where you can meet people who will create a long-lasting impact on how you want to live the rest of your life. Happy 70th Anniversary, ISB!


Pamela Chayavichitsilp & Tim Davis Pamela Chayavichitsilp is an ISB alumnus from the class of 2000. Her brother, Pamongkol (class of ’02), and sisters, Ploy (2004) and Pim (2007), also graduated from ISB. Her husband, Tim Davis, also graduated from ISB in 1998, making this a real ISB love story. Completing this amazing family affair is the fact that Pam and Tim are now sending their two daughters to ISB. It should be noted that Pam is a successful dermatologist in Bangkok.


Sending our two girls, Arinya and Anyarin, to their first day of school at ISB took us down our most treasured memory lane. It is hard to believe that exactly 20 years before this day, I graduated with the ISB class of 2000. This place wasn’t just a school. It was where I met the love of my life. Without it, we would not be the happy family we are today. So, in a shortened version, here’s our story of ISB. In 1998, Tim, a graduating senior, was looking for his prom date when he spotted a sophomore practicing basketball at the indoor basketball court with her friends. With some hesitation, he proceeded to ask her to his senior prom. It wasn’t exactly love at first sight, but as you can guess, the rest was history. After graduation, Tim continued onto college at UC Santa Cruz. Two years later, I joined him in California and started my studies at UC Berkeley. I continued onto medical school while Tim started his tech career in Silicon Valley spending over a decade in California. In 2014, we finally returned to our families in Thailand and started our own family of four. Choosing a school for our girls did not take too much research. After a combined 18 years at ISB, there was no other school that would give them the experiences we had that shaped us into who we are today. ISB was the only school Tim attended all 13 years. Not only that, all our siblings, a total of 6 of us, graduated from ISB. Piyada, Tim’s sister, graduated with the class of 1992. Her class was the first graduating class to attend the ‘new’ campus. Tim graduated in 1998. I graduated in 2000 and our class was special because we were the last class to completely avoid wearing uniform! My brother Pamongkol graduated in 2002, my sister Ploy in 2004, and my youngest sister, Pim, was the president of the graduating class of 2007. Altogether, our family attended ISB from 1983 to 2007, a 25-year span! Coming back to our beloved school after 20 years with our daughters was extra special because we were not just sending them to their first day of school, but we were looking back into our own childhood as we learned and grew together into who we are today. Although ISB looks different now than 20 years ago, it does not feel different. It still feels like home. With that, my entire family would like to wish ISB a happy 70th anniversary!


Arunee Ella Srifuengfung Arunee Ella Srifuengfung (known as Ella Cheng as an ISB student), attended ISB from 1959 to 1964 and graduated with the class of 1964. She attended Tokyo University of the Sacred Heart (made famous by the then Princess, presently Empress Michiko). Later she transferred to their sister school in New York, Manhattanville College, also famous for its alumni, the Kennedy women. After working for Thai Airways International for some time, Ella joined the ISB teaching staff as a Social Science teacher where she worked under Mr. Harry Balek from 1968-1976. At evening classes through the University of Southern California, she earned her Master’s degree in Education. Her students remember her as Miss Arunee, and later as Mrs. Sopit. After leaving ISB she worked for some 20 years with her father in his many growing businesses in Thailand, retiring in 1997. She has three children, Joy, Jate, and Tida Sopitpongstorn who reside in Thailand, while Ella is happily retired living in Bangkok surrounded by her loved ones. An interesting bit of information is that Ella’s granddaughter, Tata, is now a student at ISB finishing her sophomore year. Given that Tata’s aunt and uncle both attended ISB for a short time, that makes her a third-generation ISB student!


I have wonderful recollections of those early years at ISB. In 1959 ISB was located on U.S. property on Rajadamri Road. It was a one-story long wooden structure that ran along a big pond behind the school (which was abundantly shaded with lovely big ‘jamjuree’ trees). The classrooms were not airconditioned, but it was not needed, as Bangkok was still coolly lined with trees and canals and there was always a lovely breeze throughout the year especially in the summer. (Thai hot season when ISB was still in session) Two persons stand out in my memory. They are Mrs. Lapka and Madame Damon. Mrs. Lapka was my English teacher who was very strict about getting homework and handwriting done neatly. I nearly died with trembles and shakes when she made me go up (first time ever) to read a poem. I can still see myself covering my face with the book so I could see no one. She taught us grammar by using diagrams, which I had not seen, taught anywhere neither before nor after her.

I also remember Mrs. Ruth Butler who was in charge of many new activities; chief among them in my memory is the Girl Guides. It is with the Girl Guides that I first experienced sleeping and cooking out on the beach in Bangsaen, travelling up to visit the Leper Colony in Chiang Mai, and going to Chitrlada Palace for tea with the other local and international organizations. She was a real sweetie pie! Those times in Thailand and at ISB will never be forgotten. As a teacher at ISB, I was trained in an educational program called IGE (Individualized Guided Education). A whole new building on the new campus at Bangsue was constructed for the purpose of teaching this new program. Mr. Harry Balek, our boss, was a super Junior High School Principal.

Madame Damon was the French ballet teacher, who taught after school hours in the open hall. She used many French words (her language delighted and amused me!) to describe the steps and positions to take. She remained in Thailand from that time on, decorated with the royal title of ‘Khunying’ teaching ballet to the Thai princesses and giving royal performances. I enjoyed doing the splits, somersaults, dancing on my toes, wearing pretty puffy outfits ... and may have become a ballerina if my then traditional father, thinking it inappropriate for daughters to be on stage dancing, had not withdrawn me from the class. When ISB moved to the Soi 15 campus, it was a ‘wow’ of its time. We had a great superintendent called Mr. Nesbitt who was quite close to the students and would invite them to his home which was located on the Chao Phraya River. Would you believe that we went water skiing at his place on this large ‘river of Kings’? There were not many boats, so there was no problem with traffic and no worries of accidents.

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The year was 1985 when the Tananone family, consisting of Baw, Christine, Brinya and Malai migrated back to Thailand from Chicago, Illinois, and with that a lifelong connection to ISB began.

Brinya Tananone Brinya Tananone was a 13-year ISB student from the Class of 2000. His mother, Christine, was an ISB Social Studies teacher who was instrumental in establishing the robust community service program that is now part of the school’s DNA, while his sister, Malai, another 13-year ISB alumnus (Class of 2003), is currently an overseas educator who has taught in India and Japan. This is Brinya’s story:

My mother Christine, got a job teaching social studies in 1986, and the following year I joined Mrs. Rubis’s Kindergarten class, thus beginning a 13 year endeavor at ISB. Those 13 years were an amazing adventure for me, but what I did not realize was how those years would eventually end up shaping my life beyond the walls of ISB. As an elementary school kid, I spent countless hours roaming the campus of ISB both at Sukhumvit 15 and out in Nichada waiting for my mom to finish work.

and the mother of my two amazing children, Renn and Arissa Tananone. There was no way of foreseeing how this all played out, but without all my years at ISB, my life would have played out differently, that is for sure!

During that time, I was always drawn to the ISB athletics teams, and for a few years I ended up going to almost every volleyball and softball practice, mostly getting in the way, but I like to think I was at least of some use, even if it was just to serve as the unofficial team mascot/good luck charm. What I do know though is that those formative years instilled in me a desire to somehow, someway always be involved in athletics. First I dreamed of one day being in the high schoolers shoes and trying out for the teams (check), representing the school teams (check), and winning IASAS (check). Later on, once I returned from college, the dream of staying involved in athletics was ever present, and ISB gave me the opportunity to do just that through coaching, assisting with tournaments, and just hanging around to see all that was required. This helped give me the confidence to pursue my latest dream of becoming an Athletic Director. First, in Dubai, and then Yokohama, where I have been the Athletics Director for the past 7 years! The influence of ISB athletics on my life does not end there though. By becoming the Athletic Director at Yokohama International School, I ended up reconnecting with Yumi Noshita, who just so happened to also be an ISB alum, who also happened to be an old classmate of mine, who just so happens to now be my wife,


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Steve & Phylis Major: ISB ’91-‘98 The Major family, Steve, Phylis, Monte and Lindsay, started at ISB in August of 1991. Their time at ISB was full as Steve and Phylis were both teachers and coaches, while Monte (class of 1993) and Lindsay (1996) were very successful student-athletes. The story of the Major family continues today and Monte and Lindsay are part of the ES PE team and their children, the grandchildren of Steve and Phylis, are ISB students themselves. This is Steve Major’s story:


Phylis & I have so many wonderful ‘flash back’ memories from our time at ISB. In 1991 we arrived in Bangkok with the new teaching crew called “The Manhattan Mafia”. The name was given to us because we stayed in the Manhattan Hotel and taught at the Soi 15 campus that fall. We made the move to teacher housing in October from the Manhattan but all the school activity was still at the Soi 15 campus. To be able to be at school on time and not run into too much traffic we had to leave early from teacher housing. We had early morning bus rides back into Soi 15 to teach and then returned to Nichada Thani in the evenings. Many times we would be in traffic going into the Soi 15 campus. Jackie Douglass would get off the bus and run into Dunkin Donuts and get coffee and donuts for whoever wanted them. Our children, Monte going into the 11th grade and our daughter Lindsay going into the 8th grade were ever present and part of that interesting group of Mafiaites and our bus experiences and transition year.

Phylis taught 5 grade all the time we were at ISB. I was in MS PE for those years. Monte became friends with a good group of athletes (one which would become his brother-in-law a few years later - Cameron Perry) and they would go onto win back to back titles in IASAS volleyball under the direction of Dave Dougan. Boys Softball at ISB had always been very strong under the guidance of Harold Albert. The year Monte was a junior it was no different and the boys went on to win another IASAS championship. Unfortunately, they were not able to win that 4th consecutive title as Monte tore his ACL just before the IASAS Basketball Championships and was unable to compete the remainder of his senior year. A side note to the 1992 softball season - the ISB fields were not ready to play on – so we practiced on the green space just outside the main entrance on the right side, where Starbucks is now located, I believe. We also would drive over to AMD on Chaengwattana where we had to pick up rocks and get them out of the way before practicing. One evening we were doing a small scrimmage and Coach Albert let me play. He noticed that Cameron and Monte were playing in close in the outfield. He told me to ‘burn’ them and try to hit it over their heads. I got my pitch and it sailed well over their heads. I am not sure whether they respected my unexpected power, but boy did that feel good! The first year in Bangkok I was assistant to Fred Frazer on the Varsity Basketball team – a long time and respected coach of the Panthers. Fred, as all who know him was such a fun guy to be around. In 1992 ISB was playing in the Taipei Christmas Basketball tournament and during this tournament that Monte scored 1,000th point. Such a milestone it was that we had a small ceremony in the locker room presenting the ball to him. In 1993 Athletic Director Dave Dougan gave Phylis and I the opportunity to coach the Lady Panthers basketball team. Lindsay was a freshman at the time. The 1994-5 season was an incredible one for the Lady Panthers. In December, 1994 the Lady Panthers went on to win the 25th Annual Holiday Basketball tournament in Hong Kong. Later, ISB hosted the IASAS tournament in February and we came out as IASAS Champions over Taipei, 41-38, to finish off a great season. I must say, that not only was this a special season for ISB Lady Panther Basketball, Mrs. Major and myself, but it was even that much more special that our daughter Lindsay was part of this wonderful team. The driving forces behind this team were Theresa Camp & Tae Sohns. As soon as the previous season ended Theresa & Tae were instrumental in getting the girls to commit and get in the weight room to get stronger and also helped them to bond. During various games throughout the season we had a lot of different options to go to. I could talk about each player and their accomplishments but it would take a long time. Mrs. Major & I are so thankful for these women and their commitment to this team. The Lady Panthers dedication song was “Winning It All” by The Outfield

“Winning it all - ain’t gonna walk away giving it all - no matter what you say - ain’t gonna fall - don’t want to lose today winning it all”. As we reflect back on this team it would be appropriate for me to end with Theresa Camp’s scripture she and the team gave to the coaches at the awards banquet. Corinthians 13:4-7: Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast. It is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily, angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. From a coaches position - it is always nice to win you don’t go out and try to lose, therefore; you spend as much time practicing and trying to get better. Over the years to be successful in life you have to be dedicated, disciplined, and honest, and to be a quality person. I have (we) have loved and cared about everyone of these players (any who might have been part of the team or wasn’t able to make the final roster - you all were part of this process and special thoughts are for you, too). Certainly, as a coach you want your players to be responsible citizens of Society and great parents (if blessed enough to have children). If you through your playing days were able to use the traits above and were still able to win a championship like the 1994-95 Lady Panthers then what an accomplishment. Lindsay not only played basketball but was a valuable player on the ISB softball teams. The Lady Panther softball teams were very good in their own rights. Developing the ISB Middle School Olympics - our MS teaching team developed the Middle School Olympics and it is still going strong today. Two of Monte’s children (our grandchildren), Logan and Asa have even participated in them. Yes, for the Majors the experience at ISB was a great one. We loved and enjoyed all the students we taught and coached. Lindsay & Monte both graduated from ISB and are now back teaching at ISB with each of their families having 3 children now attending ISB. From all of the Majors to all of ISB we wish you a happy 70th anniversary!

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Pamela Slutz Pamela Slutz attended ISB from 1958 to 1964 and was a member of the Class of 1967. The daughter of a U.S. Foreign Service Officer, Pamela spent much of her youth overseas with postings in Italy and Thailand. Upon return to the United States, Pamela finished high school and then university where she earned an MA in Asian Studies. Pamela followed in her father’s footsteps and entered the Foreign Service in 1981. She held positions in such places as Zaire, Indonesia, China and Taiwan, and subsequently served as the U.S. Ambassador to Mongolia (2003-2006) and Burundi (2009-2012). She is married to Robert J. Deutch, also a Foreign Service Officer, and together they were a tandem Foreign Service couple for some 24 years. Pamela has incredibly fond memories of her time at ISB and in Bangkok, and regards them as “among the best years in my life.” This is her story about her time in Thailand.


Had I remained another three years in Bangkok, I would have graduated with the ISB Class of 1967. Alas, I departed Bangkok, after 51/2 years at ISB, in January 1964 -- in the middle of my 9th Grade school year -- when my father was reassigned to the State Department in Washington, D.C. (I eventually graduated from Richard Montgomery H.S. in Rockville, Maryland in June 1966. The ‘advanced’ study program I was in at ISB -- that is, taking 10th grade subjects in 9th grade -enabled me ‘skip’ a grade and graduate a year early.) Consequently, my memories -- and continuing friendships -from ISB are those from elementary and junior high school, from September 1958 when I started 4th grade at the ‘old’ Rajadamri Road campus through the move to the ‘new’ Sukhumvit campus on Soi 15/Bangkapi in 1960, to my tearful parting in January 1964. I spent two years at the ‘old’ school. I recall that it was housed on U.S. Government/Embassy-owned property, behind the row of houses occupied by senior Embassy officials. The property was across from the back side of the race track of the Bangkok Sports Club. It was a Thai-style house – a series of buildings connected by walkways, all on stilts. For good reason! During the Monsoon season, the ground underneath flooded. I was told that the buildings were used by the Japanese Army as its headquarters in Thailand during World War II. Some of us believed it was “haunted” by dead Japanese soldiers! Those were formative years for me and I recall them as among the ‘best years of my life.’ I still have (and treasure) the program from my (1963) 8th grade graduation. Some lucky few of my fellow ISB ‘junior high graduates’ in 1963 went on to be ISB ‘senior high’ graduates in 1967. I have always regretted not being able to stay through my senior year, but like many of my classmates at the time I was transitory, my time in Bangkok dictated by my father’s Foreign Service career.

The Bangkok I remember was quiet, almost sleepy -- before the klongs were filled in to make roads, before bicycle samlors were banned in the city and replaced with motorized tuk-tuks, and before the Vietnam War build-up turned Pat Pong Road into a ‘Red Light’ district and made drugs more available, including at ISB. There were few restaurants or other ‘hang-outs’ for ex-pat teens in the early 1960s. Outside of school, we had to rely on our own resources to entertain ourselves: we took turns hosting almost weekly Saturdaynight dance parties, hung out around the Sports Club’s Olympic-size pool, went to first-run American movies (in those wonderful Thai theaters) --- and some of us rode horses. Over the years since 1964, I have returned to Bangkok many times: 1972, 1977, 1986, 1998, 2001, 2006... and November 2012. It is no longer the Bangkok of my youth. Yes, the house my family rented is still there at #24 Soi Pikul (off South Sathorn Road), but is now a private day care center. Yes, the ISB Sukhumvit/Bangkapi campus is still there, but is now a private university. Yes, the Bangkok Riding & Polo Club is still there, but is now a part of the Bangkok Sports Club and the old Clubhouse, stables, and Mrs. Rhodes’ traditional Thai ‘house-on-stilts’ have been replaced by a new clubhouse, swimming pool, and stables. But I still treasure my memories of those years in Bangkok and the friendships I made, many of which have continued throughout the intervening years...and well into my 70’s. Happy 70th anniversary ISB!

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Maungsai Somboon Maungsai (Sai) Somboon attended ISB from 1995 – 2000, graduating with the class of 2000. His siblings, Santipab (Pab), class of 2006, and Banthisa (Ice), class of 2017, are also ISB alumni, while their mother, Ajarn Usa Somboon, has been at ISB since the early 90’s and continues her amazing work as the ISB Thai Headmistress. Sai has recently earned his Ed. M from Harvard University and is currently the Associate Director of College Counseling at The Dalton School in New York City.


When I think back about my time at ISB (1995-2000), I am consumed by fond memories of walking up the zigzag, speaking and performing on the Unocal Theatre stage, and all the raucous conversations full of joy and laughter with my classmates and teachers in the cafeteria, common areas, and the surprisingly freezing classrooms. Now, more than 20 years post-graduation, those relationships continue to evolve via digital devices and in person, all over the world. I have had the pleasure of visiting fellow ISB alums in China, Canada, Sweden, Japan, Australia, Thailand, and all over the United States.

graduation through lived experiences, personal inquiry, and intellectual curiosity. ISB gave me the tools to navigate diverse spaces in professional and personal adventures - how we find commonalities alongside our differences, how we listen and learn from each other, and how we value open-mindedness, kindness, and acceptance.

In 2000, I was the student council cabinet president, captain of the dance team, and full of hope for the new millennium. I wore my over-sized 90’s varsity jacket in those icebox classrooms while my friends and I danced to the Backstreet Boys on our minidisc players. My friends and I hung out at our homes in Nonthaburi and Sukhumvit, and online via AIM. We held sleepovers, choreographed dances for Airband, and went ice skating and watched movies at World Trade Center.

More than two decades after I graduated, my closest friends are still those from ISB, including Dr. Matt Kelsey, Kerry Lanigan, Marisa Hemungkorn, Pat Conaty, Tanay Naik, Taylor Siedell, Pamela Chayavichitsilp, Songpon Wongpaisan, Jesse Factor ’97 and so many, many more. I am eternally grateful that my ISB community is so expansive that wherever I go, as I always have folks to visit and reconnect. We missed our 20th anniversary due to the pandemic, though we hope to return to ISB in 2025.

My time at ISB undoubtedly prepared me for my multiple professions and interests. Without dance, drama, and music teachers like Mr. John McConville, Mr. Richard Cameron, and Ms. Mary Frances Lewis who believed in me, I would have never dreamed about pursuing a career in dance and theatre in New York City, where I performed alongside incredible actors and dancers for a decade. My counselor Mr. Jim Souza instilled in me the value of self-happiness through personal reflection. He helped me find colleges that offered me scholarships to study in the US - something quite rare for international students. Ms. Jackie Douglass, Madame Augusta Gatti, Mr. Brian Chanen, Mr. Ron Propp, Ms. Jane McGee and so many more taught me the values of citizenship in a global community and lifelong learning. It is within this space of continual education that I am most grateful for my time at ISB; learning perseveres beyond

My family’s connection to ISB is also paramount. My brother, Santipab (Pab) Somboon ’06 and my sister, Banthisa (Ice) Somboon ’17 are proud Bangkok Panthers. My mother, Usa Somboon continues her inimitable work as Headmistress and champion of all things ISB.

If I could tell the Sai of 8th-12th grade what I know now, I’d tell him that everything would turn out beautifully, that he’d grow up to work in theatre, dance, and education, make lifelong friends, and travel the world to see them. One day very soon, we shall walk up the zigzag together again. With this I wish ISB a wonderful 70th anniversary!

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Aaron Tamthai Aaron Tamthai and his family came to ISB in the mid-90s. The family included his brothers Micah (class of 1990) and Jason (1994), while Aaron graduated in 1996. It is noteworthy that both of Aaron’s parents were very involved with the school as his father, Mark, was on the Board of Directors, while his mother, Sasitorn, was a key member of the ISB Booster Club. While Micah and Jason are currently living in Thailand, Aaron and his family live in California as he is currently a teacher at Santa Monica High School.


I was the third Tamthai boy in our family to graduate from ISB. My brothers, Micah and Jason, graduated in ’90 and ’94 (respectively), while I graduated in ’96. My family and I arrived in Thailand shortly after the Gulf War, and lived through a fairly peaceful time in Thailand, in terms of both the economic and political climate of the mid ‘90s. Aside from the amazing educational experience and the lifelong friends I made during my time at ISB, one of the most cherished times that myself and my two brothers had during our relative stints there was playing varsity softball coached by Harold Albert. I’m not sure if any other family can make this same claim, but Mr. Albert was the coach for all three of us as

the ISB team won championships in three separate seasons. So, thanks to Coach, we are all forever Panther Champions. The one year before I began attending ISB, my family was living in Boulder, Colorado, where my dad, Mark, was on sabbatical from his university. Upon our return, and a few years later, my dad was also on the ISB Board of Directors, and separately but not indirectly, was also a big part of the baseball world in Bangkok at that time. Additionally, my mother, Sasitorn, was heavily involved with the ISB Booster Club.


When I arrived in Bangkok to teach secondary school science in 1985, I had no idea that I would be teaching there for 30 years and that my life would be turned upside down by the Chandler family.

Susan Chandler The Chandler family is one of the stalwart families to have graced the halls of International School Bangkok. Lead by the patriarch of the family, Albert, a legendary lawyer in Bangkok for many decades, the family also includes his children and ISB alumni Nima, Siri, Kim, Virginia and Sierra, as well as his wife, Susan Kessler Chandler, who was a secondary science teacher at ISB for some 30 years. This story was put together by Susan includes anecdotes about daughter Kim. There are also follow-up stories from daughters Siri, Virginia and Sierra.

I first encountered the Chandlers at the Royal Varuna Yacht Club within my first month of teaching. From Soi 15 it was easy to get a tuk-tuk to Ekamai and catch the bus to Pattaya. My love for sailing could not keep me in Bangkok on the weekends so it became an exodus that would continue for my time at ISB and beyond. In 1988 I married Al Chandler, who I had met at the bar at RVYC, father at that time of his daughters Nima, Siri and Kim. I immediately had my Thai family, which Al and I would add to with our daughters Virginia and Sierra. Albert, the father of five ISB students, one ISB teacher, and husband to one ISB teacher, remembers ISB as being a safe and caring environment that gave his children a great, diverse education. Our daughter Kim had the opportunity to experience almost full inclusion in ISB’s elementary school, a rare experience for a child with Down Syndrome in the early 80’s. The school did provide a learning assistant from time to time, but when she needed extra support it was her classmates who were there to give her a helping hand, which wasn’t a chore as Kim was full of enthusiasm and sunshine. Kim fondly remembers her 3rd Grade teacher Mrs. Jones. Her most vivid memory was the Christmas party that took place in class. She remembers being the first one to get up and receive a present not only from Santa Claus (who came to visit each year), but also from Mrs. Jones. When asked what Mrs. Jones had given her, she doesn’t remember — another reminder that often the act of giving is much more important than the actual material gift.


Another key person in Kim’s life was the ES principal, Sylvia Lu. Kim said, “I like her so much, she’s a great principal!”

Sylvia was a wonderful advocate and supporter for inclusion of people with different learning needs in ISB. Two other memories that are still fresh in Kim’s mind are learning about computers (her love for computers has only grown as the years have passed), performing a Thai dance on stage in 1985, and being a team player, in the yellow shirt house, on sports day. I remember the great teachers that I worked with (standouts include Jim Westgate, Jerry Hochberg, Barbara Sapin, The Estins, Fred Frazer, Jeff Harper, Dinah Helgeson, Ann Bradley, Brent Poling, Don Huttner, the Everetts, the Rockeys, Freda and Roger Williams, the Brewitts, and the Souzas, to name a few) and the students that I taught (all of them). The experiences of teaching at ISB were limitless. Highlights included 21 trips to the US taking 650 students (35 at a time), to participate in Operation Starship, which included time at Space Camp and other science attractions in the US and 28 trips to Chiang Mai on an inferior train with 150 8th graders. Our family opened the Nonthaburi Equestrian Sports Club where we taught middle school students to be comfortable with horses and hosted Thai disabled students from Pakkret afterschool on Fridays in a Riding for the Disabled program. And there was the move from Soi 15 to Nichada, which took over a month. But the real highlight was opening my home to students that needed a place to stay after their families had to leave Thailand. I will always love my Korean daughters, Song Yi Baek and Da Som Choi. Susan and Albert are retired and living in South Lake Tahoe, Ca., where they enjoy hiking, skiing, camping, their dog, and political and environmental action. The entire Chandler clan wishes ISB another wonderful 70 years as we all celebrate ISB’s 70th Anniversary!

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My high school highlights involved becoming a bit more open and courageous as there were more choices in terms of subjects and electives . A few outstanding teachers were partly responsible for this. Teachers who saw potential and encouraged me to do my best:

Siri Chandler This story is a series of recollections from Siri Chandler.

• • • •


I attended ISB from 2nd Grade until graduation in 1987. I was a shy and quiet student in elementary school. Learning was challenging, so it’s not a surprise that my fondest memories were of flood days when we were ‘forced’ to stay home and paddle our Optimist (small dinghy) around the garden. Coup days were also a blast, unexpected holidays which happened on occasion. I recall a day, in the late 1970’s, when there was an attempted coup. We had been at school for about 2 hours, then were suddenly told we would need to get back on the bus and go home. In those days the buses were all open air, open window buses. Our teacher told us to sit or lay low on the bus seats – lower than the level of the windows, as there may be ‘shooting’ and the school admin didn’t want us to be easy targets and have bullets go straight through our heads. I of course, was thrilled to be able to go home. Exciting days.

Mr. Nevins was my industrial arts teacher, always encouraging us to explore, get curious, be open and creative. Mrs. Holladay, my algebra teacher, respected all students. Her encouraging energy and humor allowed me to live up to her expectations. Mr. Woytowich, taught a lesson on how geometry could help us play a good game of pool. Finally, a good practical reason to learn geometry. Mrs. Freda Williamson was the first teacher who injected excitement towards writing in her Creative Writing class. With her, writing was fun, imaginary, and even inspiring. There were students in our class that were ‘unseen’ by some, but she had the ability to make them feel important and seen. Mr. Dingle, my high school P.E. teacher was brilliant. I’m thinking Ted Lasso must have used him as an example of what a real compassionate coach would be like. He motivated us with support, encouragement and enthusiasm (not through criticism). Mr. Mitchell the I.B. art teacher journalism teacher with the relaxed hippie-like attitude was a joy to learn from. His classroom felt like a home, a friendly place. As a senior, I was able to spend hours most days in the darkroom and/or taking photos --- a great way to get through my English requirements.

ISB was responsible for teaching diversity and respect for different cultures. Having friends from so many different countries, such a mix, was a true blessing. Fast Forward to 1999. I landed a job as kindergarten teacher at ISB’s new campus out in Nonthaburi. What a treat! My classroom looked out onto the playground in one corner and the grassy play area and track in the other corner. The facilities, to me, seemed like I was in a 5 star accommodation.

Teaching at ISB was a coming home. Home to diversity, and respect for differences. Each year there were children of so many different nationalities and cultures in the class. I ended up teaching at I.S.B for 10 years teaching, one of the highlights was reconnecting with teachers. •

Sue Chandler, okay, she is my stepmom, and was the middle school science teacher. She was always a source of sanity when things got tough. It was comforting having family nearby. Jim Westgate, I had known him when I was a student, but it wasn’t until teaching at ISB that he became a good friend. One of my fondest memories was being a ‘guest speaker’ for his 3rd Culture Kid classes. Jim’s way of being with his high school students was so rare – and in my view, so necessary. He oozed compassion, interest and warmth. He really cared about his students and it was heartwarming to see. He remains a dear mentor to this day. Khun Jiab (Phoungphech Buranaprapha), was more of a teaching partner than assistant. She was creative, smart, supportive, and had a strength of goodness and power to her. She was a key Thai staff member, core to ISB. She had an incredible eye as well, always seeing the snakes on the playground or on the field before most humans could.

In 2010 -2011 I took a leave of absence with the intention to go back to ISB, but during that year I discovered that mindfulness was being taught in a secular way, to young children. So, I decided not to sign my contract and devote my time to learning how to teach it to children. Fast forward to 2022… my teaching of mindfulness and compassion has expanded out to adults around the world. Life sure has been an adventure. Still one of my biggest loves is teaching in an international setting. A big thank you to ISB for giving me the foundation to celebrate diversity, and I wish the entire ISB community a wonderful 70th Anniversary!”

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From Virginia:

Virginia and Sierra Chandler This story outlines the recollections of the youngest Chandler daughters, Virginia (class of 2008), currently a high school science teacher in Nevada, and Sierra (class of 2010), who is currently working for a New Jersey based company with a specialty in family law.


I attended ISB from when I was in Kindergarten to graduation in 2008. I had such a variety of experiences throughout my educational career it’s hard to encapsulate it all in a paragraph, though I will try. I participated in so many activities ranging from Riding for the Disabled, week without walls (biking from Chiang Mai to Bangkok, skiing in Switzerland, SCUBA diving in the Similans, and Exploring Poland), participating in Cultural Convention as a bassoonist and being supported as I pursued my horseback riding endeavors. I also remember the numerous friends I made throughout the years, a group that has since scattered around the globe. More minutely I remember the smaller details as well; I remember play-learning on the large play structures that dwarfed our kindergarten classroom to participating in every musical group that I could as a senior. I remember the gargantuan libraries (where I spent most of my lunches), learning how to do internet searches on ‘Netscape’ for our library class in elementary schools and then progressing to full on computer labs and laptop carts. Finally, I remember the incredible teachers I had throughout my time there, all of whom helped me as a learner. I often think of my experiences as I currently teach high school science in an alternative education public school in a low-income area. My current students deserve the same type of educational opportunity, as I was so lucky to have participated in.

Sierra continues: I have nearly 13 years of memories from the International School of Bangkok. ISB saw me from the days I was too young to ride a bike to boldly adventuring through foreign cities for Cultural Convention and Week Without Walls. The world around ISB changed often. Some days were darker than others. I remember the day my 4th grade teacher patiently, tentatively answered our questions in the aftermath of September 11th. When we raised relief money in the halls of the middle school in January 2005, remembering the peers we lost over that break as a result of the tsunami. ISB sheltered us in those moments. Of course, most days were filled with light. I sat beside my best friend every other day in band class, not knowing that in 15 years we would be in each other’s weddings 30 days apart. New friends came and went, each leaving a piece of themselves with us long-timers. I remember school dances and sports meets and festivals in that perpetually flooded soccer field. I discovered skills, talents, and passions that would carry me every step of the way into my future. The indelible impact, it must be concluded, is that ISB was always the place I needed it to be. ISB gave me a homeaway-from-home in the sun-lit middle school corridors and the high school music ‘basement.’ ISB gave me independence from an early age to navigate my surroundings and educational prospects. Growing up mere minutes away with a teacher for a parent, I think of my childhood and it is inextricably linked to that redroofed, courtyard-filled, state-of-theart center of education. They are one in the same. And how lucky I was that this is true. How lucky I am. “On behalf of the entire Chandler family, we wish ISB all the best on the celebration of their 70th anniversary!”


Sukhvinder Singhsachathet Sukhvinder Singhsachathet is an ISB graduate from the class of 1981. A successful business owner in Bangkok, Sukhvinder attended the Western Business College in Portland, Oregon after leaving ISB. Of note, Sukhvinder’s son Nihal also attended ISB as a member of the class of 2017. Sukhvinder, as he notes in his story, is still in contact with many of his ISB friends and has met with them in Bangkok quite often over the years.

My journey at ISB started in 1975. I had just returned to Thailand from a boarding school in Mussoorie, a hill station in India. I must say I embraced the new culture of mainly American students at that time due to the Vietnam War. My first campus in 5th grade was at Vibhavadi Rangsit Road where the Thai Airways headquarter now stands. I was at that Bangsue campus until 7th grade, and was to be at the same campus for 8th grade as well, but the end of the Vietnam war meant the school population narrowed down and the school was merged into one campus at Sukhumvit Soi 15, what we called the Bangkapi campus. That is where my 8th Grade started and where my high school finished. I have fond memories at the Bangsue Campus, making lifelong friends who were to graduate with me in 1981. As for teachers, I have great memories of Mrs Buranamontri, Mr. Westgate and Mr. Patterson. My 8th to 12th Grade at Soi 15 was indeed the most memorable time of my life as I made more lifelong friends. The teachers in particular that I remember fondly are Mr. Boerger in Math/ Computer, Mr. Boca in English, Mr. Frazer in PE, Mr. Kabatznik in Drama, and Mr. Schoen in German. These educators all had a profound effect on me as an impressionable teenager in the late 70s and early 80s.


My overall take away to this day is the complete sense of community at ISB, which still has a great impact on me to this to this day. I am still in touch with old friends and have even made new ISB connections along the way. What a wonderful family it is, and I wish each and everyone in the extended ISB community a happy 70th anniversary!

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Penny Shelton Penny Shelton, Class of 1973, is a rehired MD practicing family medicine in the Chicago area in the U.S., specializing in home birth and other natural approaches. Her parents were stationed in Thailand as Southern Baptist missionaries. Currently retired, Penny is married to ISB alumnus Bob Stewart, ISB class of 1975.

I started second grade at ISB in 1962, having attended first grade in the USA. There were many new, and sometimes frightening experiences in my introduction to ISB, the first being meeting my new teacher who looked very different from my first teacher. My good friend, Debbie Dietrich (Faith) took my hand as we lined up with other first and second graders at the main campus and we walked together across the smelly swamp/ klong on wooden walkways to the building where we had our classes. It is doubtful I have ever sufficiently repaid Debbie for her kindness that first day. At recess we would wait in line to buy popsicles from the school-sanctioned vendors. They cost one baht, and, if you were lucky, they would still have orange or grape. On unlucky days, coconut and chocolate popsicles would be the only choices left. I had never heard of chocolate popsicles. We brought our lunches in sacks that broke immediately if they got wet. Tangerines and pomelo were new fruit snacks to us, but soon cherished, in our lunches.


Junior High at the Bangsue Campus through 1969 was wonderful because we had a brand new campus. The long, often hot, bus rides allowed more time for us to experience friendships as we sat in our assigned seats and sang and laughed and bickered. When I received news of my Grandpa’s death in a fatal car accident, I was told in front of my bus mates. They bought me a sympathy card that I still have today. I also remember Chorus; we performed the songs from Oliver! Eighth grade graduation seemed like a big deal for which a new dressmaker made me an outfit, and I received a smoky topaz pendant as a special gift. As a sophomore and senior I was on the Soi 15 campus (I spent my junior year in the US as my parents had furlough that year). I remember the awesome Panther basketball and track stars that stole my heart (though they did not know that I existed); a Sadie Hawkins dance for which one heartthrob agreed (oh, joy!) to be my date (although we never dated again). I remember a slow dance at the American Embassy where one particular ISB male classmate held me very tightly, literally and figuratively taking my breath away.

unfiltered cigarettes, and ate Sloppy Joes at the snack bar at the Soi 15 campus. The sports programs were great, including the House Games (Go Blue!) and the Panthers did consistently well in the Singapore Games. There was tremendous school spirit and I was glad that I was able to graduate from ISB. The education I received at ISB in the classroom was exceptional. The faculty were top-notch and the standards were rigorous. That academic excellence is something I appreciate to this day. ISB was my school, and Bangkok, my home. ISB remains an important part of my history. I struggle sometimes to avoid feelings of elitism over those who did not get to go to ISB, who did not get to experience another country as part of their growing up years. Probably a more appropriate stance is simple gratitude that I was privileged to be there, and blessed to be an ISB alum.

When I watched The Young Internationals (an ISB performing group), I wished that I was up there on the stage with them. During my senior year I recall an incredible field trip to Angkor Wat via train. Mrs. Carolyn Saluja was one of the chaperones. The Teen Club had American style cheeseburgers and fries, and showed great movies like Romeo and Juliet. As missionary kids, we lived at the Southern Baptist hostel on the klong near the Shack. I remember singing in a Christian group called “Outreach,” attending retreats at Pattaya, bargaining at the Thai markets, riding the boats on the klongs, buses so crowded that people were hanging off the sides, and of course, the forbidden tuk-tuks. (three wheeled taxis). We experimented with Tom Collins drinks, choked on

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Cory and Justin Ritthaler The Ritthaler family moved to Bangkok in 1991. The three children, Cory, Justin and Mindi all attended ISB until Cory’s graduation in 1996. Parents Marc and Lorelei were also very involved in the activities and athletic programs at ISB. These are the reflections of Cory and Justin on their years at ISB.

Growing up in a small town of about 2,000 people in East Texas is where our pre-ISB story begins. We travelled to see grandparents in Illinois and took family trips to Florida, but in the grand scheme of things we did not know much about the rest of the world. One day our dad came home with the news that we were moving to Bangkok, and we had a level of curious excitement we still remember today. We moved to Bangkok in 1991 and enrolled at ISB. Many experience “culture shock” going from small town US to another world but it did not phase us once. We were there for the last year on Soi 15. We had the opportunity to experience all the joys of street tacos, flooded streets, and the khlong bordering the back side of the field. This made for a great target in batting practice in baseball, remember losing a few soccer balls kicked over the fence during games, and it also produced some miserable smells. We then experienced the inaugural year and beyond at the

Nichada Thani location and every aspect of the school’s facilities and surrounding community were impressive. As we reflect on our fondest memories, the ones that stand out the most and have us telling friends and colleagues stories to this day include IASAS sports, Week without Walls, and family trips we never dreamed of taking when we lived in the US. Competing in sports in IASAS (Soccer, Rugby, and Softball) provided a unique opportunity to travel all over Southeast Asia, compete with teammates at ISB from all over the world, and stay with hosts who took us into their homes like family. Week without Walls was one of the most awesome concepts a high schooler could imagine – a week off school to experience a trip, learn an art, or enjoy a hobby. When we tell people today that we got to trek in Tibet/Nepal, visit NASA, get certified in Scuba in Pattaya, and spend a week getting licensed in sailing in Hua Hin in a high school sponsored outings they are amazed. Family trips also got an immediate upgrade when we moved to Bangkok. Our parents used every chance possible to use return trips home to the US and/or Christmas vacations to travel throughout Europe, visit Australia and New Zealand, multiple stops in Hawaii, and almost every Christmas a family vacation in Phuket. We visited 25+ countries prior to graduating from high school and most friends we met in college had made it to Mexico or Canada at best. We feel fortunate and blessed to have had the opportunity to be able to experience other cultures day to day at school and in our personal lives at a young age and can confidently say that the positive influence has led us to raise our children with invaluable lessons we learned from around the world. ISB will always have a special place in our hearts.


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In January 1996, our family moved from Morgan Hill, California to Thailand where my children attended International School Bangkok. I have three children who attended ISB, Nicole was a sophomore when she first arrived, Jenna was in the sixth grade, and Steven in second grade.

The Tavares Family The Tavares Family, parents Tony and Teri along with their three children, Nicole, Jenna and Steven, came to Thailand in early 1996. The two daughters, Nicole (class of 1999) and Jenna (class of 2003) both graduated from ISB, while son Steven left after grade 9 but would have graduated with the class of 2007. Mom Teri was very involved with the PTA and the Booster Club, while the daughters were dancers and Steven played rugby. This is the of their time at ISB and what they have done since returning to the U.S. as told by Teri.


As a mother of three, I was very fortunate to be very active with the PTA Board and Booster Club of this great international community during our time at ISB. My daughters were very involved with the dance program at ISB where they were instructed by John McConville. Since moving away from Thailand in 2004, 18 years ago, our family has settled back home in the United States. Nicole, after graduating from the University of Southern California School of Pharmacy, is now a Pharmacist in Los Angeles, California. Nicole remembers being very thankful for a community that ISB created that supported and nurtured every interest a student could want - academics, arts, badminton, sports, philanthropy, languages, and cultures while promoting a true love and appreciation for our host country, Thailand. The educators who influenced her most were there for her long after she had left ISB. She is very thankful for the experiences and cultures that were shared with her by Mr. Jim Souza, John McConville, Sr. Ignacio Serrano, and Khun Usa Somboon. Jenna graduated from the University of Colorado, Denver and currently works in the Geospatial field. Jenna is very thankful for being raised in a strong community that wanted the best for everyone. She is very thankful for having the opportunity to attend a school where she was able to learn and become fascinated about different cultures and how everyone respected them. One of her favorite memories is how the cafeteria was the hub of the school. Everyone would gather there before school to eat and even on the weekends. How could we forget the awesome pancakes and pomelo from Bobby’s Cafeteria!

Steven graduated from Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado and currently works in the Geospatial Engineering field as well. He remembers being thankful for attending an institution that cared deeply about its students and student needs and meeting lifelong friends who attended ISB. Steven is grateful for the instructors and coaches who have left an impact on him and mostly remembers Mrs. Jam Hotra, Mr. Jerome Banks, and Mr. Jon Conrad, who he had the opportunity to learn and excel at the sport of rugby, an activity that he has continued to play since coming back to the United States. He also misses the Bangkok Baseball Association and is very happy to see ISB now has a baseball team. Our family is forever grateful for the rich educational experience they received at ISB. Going to an international school, my children are very thankful that they were a part of the strong international student body of ISB where they were able to develop a much larger understanding of the world while learning about the wide variety of cultures, customs, and traditions that exist at ISB. We are also thankful for the life-long friendships that we still hold dearly with many of the faculty and staff, and alumni of ISB. We always look forward to our many ISB-Bangkok reunions. We wish ISB a very happy 70th anniversary!

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From Chris:

Chris and Sara Hull In 1993, while living in Huntsville, Alabama, Bob Hull called his wife, Kathy, with a question that would forever change the lives of the Hull family. “Do you want to move to Thailand? You have 5 minutes to make a decision.” And that quickly, the journey to life in Thailand and at International School Bangkok began for Chris Hull (beginning 1st grade) and Sara Hull (beginning 9th). Both Sara (Class of ‘98) and Chris (Class of ‘06) would eventually graduate from ISB after being shaped by our experiences at the school and in the community.


Some of the most memorable times I have at ISB include competing in numerous sports, including IASAS Softball, Basketball & Cross Country, local leagues (BBSA) and tournaments (SEAYBST) hosted at ISB as well as our other conference schools. The opportunities this allowed me in traveling South East Asia and seeing other countries is one I know I was fortunate to have. Outside of the sports fields and courts, the individuals that I was able to meet and share experiences with have never been forgotten. From trips to Chiang Mai, Kanchanaburi, local school events, classes and our story telling time in the cafeteria, the bonds that I created with friends who became family, in and out of school, have forever held a place with me over the years. While we aren’t always able to talk, we still tell stories of our days at ISB when we do. Flash forward almost 16 years from graduating from ISB: I am now married with two dogs, two cats and a crested gecko, the Aquatics Director at the University of Missouri and captain of the local Men’s Rugby Club. While this path was not one that I saw coming, the experiences from ISB and adapting to new things/meeting new people has allowed me to enjoy experiences no matter where I have ended up. I will forever treasure my time and experiences in Thailand and am a Panther for life!

From Sara: Prior to moving to Bangkok, I had moved yearly from 5th through 8th grade. We hadn’t stayed anywhere long enough to feel like I belonged. I never imagined that feeling would be established in Thailand! Shortly after being enrolled at ISB, I learned that I was a Third Culture Kid. Not long after that, I became a Peer Facilitator. I was also involved in Photography and the school yearbook, the Erawan. Before I knew it, I belonged with these other TCKs and was a part of the ISB community. Those experiences at while at ISB bonded us forever. I have met people who went to ISB many years prior, and we instantly had a bond in our shared experience. I was steered toward my current career when my counselor, Ms. Brie Goolbis, suggested that I look into Social Work versus Psychology. I declared Social Work as my major freshman year in college, and have never looked back. I have now worked in Child Welfare, specifically with children in foster care, for 20 years, both in direct practice and in supervision. I have a 10 year old son and three dogs. Those few years I spent at ISB helped shape who I am today, influenced my world view, taught me to be an independent thinker, and ultimately made me a better social worker and human being.

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No place like home Kevin Kuehn and Tahireh Thampi Kevin Kuehn and Tahireh Thampi met while they were ISB students in elementary and middle school in the 1990s. Kevin left ISB after middle school, while Tahireh stayed until graduation. They are both members of the class of 2004. As you will read, this friendship turned into something much, much more some time later. This is Kevin’s story:

At the start of the school year, I always tell my students that ISB and Thailand are my home. For international teachers, moving from one school to another is quite normal. Of course, over the span of our careers, we learn to call new countries and schools our ‘home.’ But when I call ISB home, I mean it literally. When I was ten, my family was transferred to Thailand because of my father’s job. In many ways, my experience moving to a new country was a reflection of what I see in my students and their families today. Adjusting to a new country, going on sightseeing tours, figuring out school expectations, making friends, and getting involved in sports and afterschool activities were and are trademarks of this experience. I loved my time at ISB as an elementary and middle schooler. As is typical in middle school, I made some really close friends. Unfortunately, when I left ISB and Thailand, the world was not quite as connected as it is now. The only way to keep in touch was through email, and if you remember dial-up internet, it wasn’t exactly convenient. But my memories stuck, and when Facebook came into existence in 2004, many of us were able to reconnect. It was amazing!


A few years later, as I was finishing my time at university and beginning to think about where I wanted to start my teaching career, I received a short message on Facebook from an ISB middle school friend named Tahireh Thampi. She wrote just to see how things were going in my life. It just so happened that Tahireh was the same middle school friend I had a massive crush on back then and who was also my first real girlfriend. One short message in the summer turned into essay-long messages back and forth. As messaging turned into phone calls and Skyping, it was clear that so many of our positive memories

revolved around our time together at ISB. Whether it was participating in a PrimeTime sleepover in the ES library or class trips to Kanchanaburi, we had such fond recollections of each other and those experiences. Eventually, messages and calls culminated in a five-day trip to meet up in Thailand that winter. This turned into her coming to my home in Michigan that spring, which turned into both of us deciding to move back to Thailand that following summer. And now here we are. Twenty-five years after my first visit to Bangkok, fourteen years after her short message, and five years after returning to teach at our former school. We have two beautiful little girls, two very naughty dogs, and a life that neither of us could have imagined for ourselves. So, when I tell my students that ISB is home, I mean that ISB has given me all of the things that we tend to associate with that word - happiness, joy, and perhaps most important of all, family.

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Fast-forwarding almost 30 years -- 29 family members of the Bajaj/ Uberoi clan have graduated from ISB, including my parents, my brother, aunts, uncles, cousins and godfather.

The Bajaj Family The Bajaj family has an incredibly unique history at ISB as 29 family members have graduated from ISB. Yes, you read that correctly, 29! This story has been lovingly penned by Zenya Bajaj (class of 2017) as she tells of her parents, Ashwani (Sunny) Bajaj and Rasina Uberoi Bajaj (both from the class of ’86), and her brother, Nayal (2015).

My name is Zenya Bajaj and I graduated from ISB in 2017. I write today on behalf of my whole family, all of whom also graduated from ISB. Let’s start at the beginning of the Bajaj family legacy at ISB. My parents, Rasina Uberoi Bajaj and Ashwani (Sunny) Bajaj graduated from ISB in 1986. The ISB campus my parents attended was the one located in downtown Bangkok, Sukhumvit Soi 15 (where NIST is now) before relocating to Chaeng Wattana. While I like to believe my parents were high school sweethearts, they were only great friends. Despite their P.E. teacher, Mr. Dingle claiming they would get married someday when my dad was carrying my mom around campus after breaking her leg, it seems their relationship (if you could even call it that) plateaued at a friendship -- my mom even referred to my dad as her ‘best brother’ in her senior quote (quite clearly friend-zoned).


I think it’s pretty clear that I wouldn’t exist today if it wasn’t for ISB. But I also wouldn’t have cherished friends and family members in my life. ISB is also where my dad met his best friend, who is now Godfather to both my brother and I.

The Class of 2017 is the first class to have students spend 14 years at ISB, since we were the first year of Pre-K at ISB. I am one of the seven 14-year graduates ISB had in the class of 2017. My experiences and memories of the school stretch back further than I can remember. I always felt safe at ISB. It wasn’t just knowing that my older brother, Nayal Bajaj was there with me for 12 years, but knowing that I was keeping family traditions alive made me feel like I certainly belonged here; like there wasn’t another school that could give me a sense of home the same way ISB could. It’s the small things -- like remembering how upset I would be when I forgot my hat in Elementary school so I couldn’t play out in the field. Or waiting for every fourth Friday so I could get a Panther Pop from the Booster Hut. Or bringing cupcakes to school on my birthday -- one especially standing out is to my 7th-grade Math class with Mr. Banks. So, where are we today? In many ways, who we were at ISB impacted our livelihoods. My parents met in Mr. Taricani’s typing class -- this interest for writing led my mom to spend hours working at the school magazine, The International. It was clearly destined for her to go on to run her own publishing empire with 30 magazines across Asia. My parents also shared accounting class together -- the interest in growth and finance laid the foundation of where my father is today, having developed several hotel properties in Thailand and India. ISB taught my parents the underlying skills to run their own businesses and guided them towards their passion. This strongly influenced the business genes in my brother and I as we both won our year’s Higher Level Business & Management Award.

The love my brother and I have for business stems from our parents, and their yearn for business started at ISB. Today, my brother graduated from the University of Miami with Honors combining Theatre Management with Finance two years ago, and is now working in the field of Tokenization, Crypto and, most recently, data analytics. I graduated from the University of British Columbia with High Honors Distinction and now work in the field of Social and Digital Strategy. The careers my brother and I have selected clearly show the evolution of business, that stems from the traditional business courses our parents took in high school. It wasn’t just the courses at ISB that influenced my family. My mom and her father started Bangkok’s International Festival of Dance and Music in 1999, a non-profit annual festival created to enrich the minds of people and inspire the youth through art and music. My brother and I both played instruments in ISB’s band -- Nayal played the saxophone and I played the clarinet. The exposure we had to music in school led to the appreciation of art and music -- causing my brother to volunteer at my mom’s non-profit festival and go onto major in Theatre Management. Our family’s involvement in the exposure of dance & music fostered our curiosity towards art and music, and ISB’s music curriculum turned curiosity into creativity for us. This appreciation for music created an annual drive to promote the arts that our family started 23 years ago. It’s funny -- ISB was a different campus when my parents attended and the school itself evolved so much by the time my brother and I went. But ISB is more than just where the school was; the impact and the community affected us in so many similar ways. We love the same music (ABBA, the Weeknd), we dress the same (did I mention they didn’t even have uniforms when my parents were at ISB?!) and we have the same school written on our high school diplomas -- all four of us. The Bajaj name is imprinted in the walls of ISB, and when I visit, I’m reminded of the pride I feel when visiting a school that I know was instrumental in creating my family.


Earl Bridges Earl Bridges was a student at ISB in the mid-70s and graduated from high school with the Class of 1983. His siblings, Mike (graduated in 1985) and Tami (1987) also attended the school. Today Earl and his close friend and ISB alumnus Craig Martin (class of ’84), both philanthropy veterans, are the hosts of a television docu-series called The Good Road, which looks at the world of global charities. Earl’s ISB story contrasts the differences in the school during the Vietnam era and after the conflict ended.


The ISB that I left in 1983 was very different from the ISB I entered for the first time as a skinny 4th grade Air Force brat during the last years of the Vietnam War in 1974. However, as much as my alma mater has changed over the decades, and continues to change even today, there is not a more descriptive adjective that I offer when people ask where am I from? I grew up in Bangkok, and went to ISB. ‘Nuff said. When I arrived to ISB, the school had a much larger military presence. The USA embassy was the largest in the world, and the school felt more like an American School than an International school. However, during my 5th grade year, the USA war effort was over. Saigon fell in September of 1975, and my fighter pilot father, who saw a great many atrocities in Southeast Asia began to keep many stories to himself that he has not told even today.

I used my unique ISB experience and network to cobble together a career in television, and technology. One of my oldest ISB friends, Craig Martin, is also the co-host of our international TV show, THE GOOD ROAD. We’ve been heavily involved in international philanthropy, and continue to travel the globe looking for stories of people who are making a difference where they live. It is not lost on me how influential my time at ISB has been. It continues to be an integral part of my brand. It accurately describes who I am. And I always look forward to spending time with old colleagues and meeting new friends who share a love for ISB. Happy 70th Anniversary ISB!

We left Bangkok after my 6th grade year, as the USA military pulled most of the ‘active military’ out of Thailand, and we moved to Germany where we worried more about the threat of a Russian-initiated Cold War, than the spread of communism. In 1980 we returned to Bangkok as Christian missionaries. No doubt trying to convert the war horrors that my father had experienced, with the new found love he felt by becoming a Christian. For me, well… I was the kid, and not the missionary nor the military man. My Junior and Senior years (80-83) were filled with much more international flavors. My friends were mostly Foreign Service dependents, or big business. Gone were the military brats. I was very social, and participated in most Varsity sports with kids from all over the globe. Soccer, Basketball, Baseball and Track became my passion. Later in life, these diverse relationships would serve me well. I graduated high school with Ambassador’s children, influential NGO, governmental and business dependents. This community became the basis for how I see myself today. Multi-cultured, poly-lingual, influential and adaptable.

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A ‘Polder’ in Bangkok As Ger Hoppe tells it: “In the early 80’s the old ISBcampus at Soi 15 off Sukhumvit Road became gradually more and more unfit for the growing student population. Moreover, the buildings had deteriorated and, worst of all, the campus was located on a plot of low-laying land at the side of a major klong. During the rainy season the campus regularly flooded for a couple of days, or even longer, and the school facilities were not properly accessible with normal footwear.

Interview with Mr. Ger Hoppe: The IB Program and a Dutch ‘Polder’ at ISB The International Baccalaureate Program at ISB In its quest to better serve an international clientele, in the mid-80s ISB began looking at the International Baccalaureate (IB) Program. Created in the late ‘60s, the IB had begun to take its place in the world of international curricula, especially in Europe. It was at the urging of ISB Board of Directors member, Mr. Ger Hoppe, that the school decided to seriously explore this program.


Ger Hoppe, a Dutch civil engineer, lived and worked in Thailand from 1975 until 2003. He was on the ISB Board of Directors from 1979 until 1985. He had seen that it was difficult for his two children, Margot (Class of 1982) and Michael (Class of 1985), to enter into Dutch universities, since the American high school diploma was not recognized in Europe. To gain entrance into university in their home country, Margot had to take the Dutch national final exams in addition to her ISB final exams and Michael was compelled to do an extra year or two of studying in the Netherlands to earn his IB diploma. Led by the High School administration, ISB decided to pursue

this course of study with the goal of allowing students to earn both an ISB diploma and an IB diploma as well. Combined with the already existing Advanced Placement (AP) course offerings, ISB made certain that all of its high school students would be able to pursue their dreams wherever they offered themselves. Additionally, these high level courses can often be used to earn advanced credit when the students enter university. Today the IB curriculum is a major component of the ISB high school curriculum. Each school year scores of ISB students sit for IB exams, earn advanced credit for university, and earn IB diplomas. In the most recent 2020-21 school year, all 96 of ISB’s IB diploma candidates earned their diplomas (100% pass rate!), while three of them earned perfect scores of 45, an amazing achievement. Little do these individuals know that they have Ger Hoppe to thank for the existence of IB at ISB.

The Board of Directors discussed this problem, and the decision was made that the most suitable solution would be to put a simple dyke around the campus, build a sump-pit inside, put a pump into it and get it going as soon as the campus threatened to be flooded. The fellow members of the Board decided that I, being a Dutch civil engineer, would be the right person to get things moving, and indeed, after a couple of weeks the ISB-campus was converted into a miniature ‘Dutch’ polder. It worked reasonably well for a couple of years and a similar system was put into place at the new campus in Pakkret, but it also became clear to all of us that the Soi 15 campus was not only too small, but also not particularly suitable any more for the growing student population and the changing demands. A New Campus in Pakkret When first Margot, and later Michael graduated from ISB, that of course ended my involvement as a Board member of the school. I was occasionally asked to advise about some odds and ends related to the premises, but it became clear to all who were involved that the ‘old’ soi 15 campus was no longer suitable for, nor could be converted to a modern international school for a still growing student population. Then one day the ISB principal asked me to join a team to look at a plot of land in the Chang Wattana area that was offered to ISB. To cut a long story short, it appeared to all of us that this plot was very suitable for the intended purpose. There was enough land available to buy a bit more than actually needed, to be prepared for future extension which eventually appeared to be a good thing to do. The plot of land was located above expected future flood levels, and connection to utility provisions with sufficient capacity was guaranteed. ISB eventually decided to buy this plot of land and to move to the next step, i.e. to select a designer. The ISB Board was nice enough to offer my company the function of project manager and construction supervisor, and we started moving ahead by setting up the selection procedure for an architect/designer. In order to keep the parents as much as possible

involved in this process, it was decided to give them a voice in the selection of the architect. After a pre-selection by the Board, two well-known architects gave a presentation in the Rajendra Hall about their past experience and approach to the design of a new school. The assembled parents eventually came to the conclusion that the presentation of professor Sumet Jumsai made the best impression and the ISB board decided to proceed accordingly. I still had the pleasure to visit the school under construction at least weekly to chair the ‘site’- meetings with the contractors and to keep an eye on my team of supervisors, till the happy day that the new campus could be handed over to staff, teachers and students of ISB. That day was not uneventful, or at least that is wat it looked like. It so happened that I received a phonecall from the ISB engineer on that (Saturday) morning of the official opening, to tell me that the air-conditioning system of the Assembly hall did not function. I called the contractor and the designer and drove full speed to the new campus. There it became clear that there was only a tripped switch that needed to be reset, and just in time the a/c system started and filled the Assembly hall with nice cool air. The official opening took place under pleasant conditions, and formed also the end to my dealings with and for ISB.” ISB appreciates the work of the amazing Mr. Ger Hoppe, an unsung hero of ISB who was instrumental in bringing the IB Program to the school, who designed a system to make the campus flood-free, and who was one of the people who oversaw the construction of the new campus in Pakkret. Mr. Hoppe, we salute you!!

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Charm Osathanond Charm Osathanond attended ISB from kindergarten onwards and graduated with the class of 2005. A graduate of Chulalongkorn University, Charm is an actress and model who is perhaps best known as a former Miss Thailand who competed in the Miss Universe pageant in 2006.


I went to ISB from kindergarten through Grade 12, and throughout my thirteen years there I made countless memories along the way. Perhaps my favorite ISB memory dates back to September 13, 1992, my very first day at the school. The semester had started for about a month already and I was ‘the new kid in class.’ Thus, at age five I walked into an atmosphere where I knew no one and didn’t really understand what anyone was saying as I spoke little or no English. However, all of my worries disappeared even before the first bell, as all of my new classmates came rushing towards me to show the ‘new kid’ how to start the day. I then lifted my head and saw Mrs. Ballesteros, my kindergarten teacher, giving me the warmest look. That’s the moment I knew I was in good hands and that everything was going to be okay at my new school. For me, what’s more important that the memories made during my thirteen years of school at ISB are the bonds that were created for a lifetime. To this very day, I still keep in touch with Mrs. Ballesteros and a number of my kindergarten classmates. Whenever life tests me, whenever I feel like I don’t know the way out, I can always look for the life-long bond that were created during my years at ISB. Happy 70th anniversary, ISB!

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Pawranee Rock Shipley The Rock family was an ISB institution for many years. All of The Rock ‘kids’ attended ISB at one time or another. This included Pawranee, Ryan, Erica and Jennifer. Pawranee Shipley Rock is the eldest of the siblings and graduated from ISB in 1995. Now married with five children of her own, this is her story.

Reflecting on my four years of high school at ISB from 1991-1995, I’m flooded with a mix of emotions– namely joy, as I remember the variety of activities I participated in that enriched my life. With tears of appreciation, I remember Mrs. Freda Wiliams sharing her enthusiasm for Pep Club. She helped us bring happiness to others through skits, games, and in taking turns being the Panther mascot. Most people knew when it was me because of how short I was, and my long braided hair hanging from the back of the mask! I came into this world quite shy as a child, but by the time I reached high school, I became known for my ability to talk to everyone. I truly found happiness among fellow ISB students and teachers. Most people understand that we all have things to hide, the less shiny parts of ourselves that we’re afraid no one will understand or should even know. School, however, became my refuge, unknown to those around me. I was seen in a way that helped me feel safe. My favorite way to escape the deeply personal struggles in my life was finding creativity in the dark room. Putting on music (usually the same Beatles cassette tape), I found peace in the dark room. I loved watching seemingly blank photo paper reveal beautiful images, each moment slowly surfacing. I found it really beautiful to watch that transformation.

twenty-one-year-old twins! (Shockingly, none of them have my school spirit. How??) Growing up overseas taught me about living in the moment, since we didn’t always know when another student might move away. At a time before the internet, those present relationships mattered! I became best friends with a core group of friends, who I remain in touch with even still. In fact, one of them was one of my college roommates, Thomas Shipley, who became my husband of now twenty-five years! With life so fleeting, I still appreciate getting to know people’s hearts. In my career as an esthetician, I love the opportunity to care for people, especially those relaxed moments in conversation where strangers often feel compelled to share personal matters with me. It’s special and rewarding to be a safe space for others. I will always be grateful for the environment at ISB that likewise allowed me to cultivate parts of myself that may otherwise have remained hidden. Happy 70th anniversary, ISB!!

I dabbled a little bit in track at the request of my brother, Patrick, an experience quite challenging but bonding. However, an area I found most rewarding was volunteering my time with Thai children. The hours spent with the Orphanage Club filled my heart, as I’ve always felt tender towards little ones. I cherish the memories of holding their hands, talking and singing to them, and seeing the impact that love and touch had on those babies and toddlers. I believe in the importance of advocating and helping all children be a part of a loving home. Maybe it’s no surprise that I now have five children of my own, ranging from eleven to


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challenges, the after-school hours surrounded by jocks and invested coaches became my happy place. I always felt the most confident, the most at ease with myself, when physically training with my teammates–where everyone felt real and grounded in who they were, sweating under the fierce Bangkok sun and relentless humidity.

Erica Rock Kiefer

Fortunately, I didn’t have to leave that athletic identity behind when I moved to college. I found the BYU women’s rugby club in Provo, Utah and fit right in. It’s no wonder that I discovered my husband, Daniel Kiefer, who also played rugby, thus “bridging the gap between the men’s and women’s team” as my teammates liked to say. Still in my early twenties at the time, I continued to discover that I didn’t have to grow out of playing games after all. I became a Recreational Therapist, running team-building and other experiential activities with at-risk youth. Again, using sports and movement, I felt that passionate piece of myself continue to grow through my career choice.

Erica Rock Kiefer is the second eldest Rock daughter and graduated from ISB in 2002. In her High School years, she was very active in athletics (soccer, touch, and track & field) as well as the Choral music program. She is now married with four children living in Las Vegas, Nevada.


I once thought that my identity as a high school athlete was fleeting–that one day, I would have to grow out of playing games and subject myself to the boring, sedentary life of an adult, who had to choose responsibilities over the fun of sprinting and chasing a ball. After experiencing the rich life of a traveling student-athlete at the International School Bangkok from 1999-2002, I really couldn’t think of anything more fulfilling. Amidst the normal social pressures of trying to fit in as a teenager and juggling academic

to show my poetry work to the principal… many small but memorable and impactful memories, even now as I’m nearing forty-years-old. It’s truly no surprise that those moments stand out to me. I found most of the teachers and coaches at ISB willing to take the time to know and challenge me on an individual level, as well as cheer me on as one of the five ‘Rock kids’-my awesome siblings! What a childhood I enjoyed overseas, most of which took place at ISB, full of opportunities to explore my hobbies (like singing with Undefined, our studentrun A Capella group), leadership, service, and travel galore to other international schools and countries. While my childhood was certainly not void of obstacles, when I look back on those early years, I am filled with gratitude and awe for the anchor that ISB provided. So, on the occasion of ISB’s 70th year, I wish one and all a very happy anniversary!

I took a pause from sports and rec therapy, making time for prioritizing family life. How fortunate I am for the rigorous physical challenges of my past to help me succeed in birthing five babies and chasing a cluster of young kids around for the past twelve years! Somehow, I fit in time to make a childhood dream come true, writing and publishing a handful of young adult books with Clean Teen Publishing. In between toddler naps and nursing babies and swapping kids with other moms for cherished free time, I committed myself to six books, only one of which is more of an autobiography/memoir of losing my first-born to SIDS. I’ve often reflected on my elementary school days, where I attended four years at ISB from 1992-1995 (previous to the following three years of high school). “An author,” I answered, when asked what I wanted to be when I grew up. I have distinct memories of each teacher guiding confidence in my fiction writing, perhaps not knowing just how impactful their belief in me would be. Pulling me aside for individual compliments, meeting the author-spouse of one teacher, while another took a moment

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Jen Rock Fidler Jen Rock Fidler, The youngest Rock sibling, is a member of the ISB class of 2003. Like all of her brothers and sisters, Jen was active in sports (soccer, touch, and track & field) as well as participating in Choir for all four year of High School. This is her reflection of her time at ISB.

My name is Jennifer (Jen) Fidler, but before that I was Jen Rock, the youngest of the five Rock kids. We all attended ISB at some point, but for me it was for Elementary and High School (1991-1995 and 19992003). I enjoyed a rich education with many cultural experiences that opened my eyes and taught me to appreciate people from all backgrounds. I was surrounded by an atmosphere of high achievement, which taught me a strong study and work ethic and prepared me for my learning at Brigham Young University (2003-2007). While I greatly appreciate those aspects of my ISB experience, the highlights of my time at ISB were participating in the music and athletic programs, and they have had a lasting impact on my life. I was in choir every year at ISB, and I was privileged to be a part of Cultural Conventions/IASAS Music and a student run Acapella group called Undefined. I continue to sing and stretch myself by performing for my church and teaching my own children to sing and perform often. I am grateful for Dinah Helgeson for many amazing opportunities in singing.

In 2006 I married Russell (Rusty) Fidler and we now reside in Fairmont, West Virginia with our five children, Kylana (12), Brax (10), Stella (8), Haylee (6) and Savannah (4). As a homeschooling mom, I am their teacher but also their coach! Rusty and I both coach our children in the community soccer league and it so fun! I absolutely rely on lessons and strategies I learned as a soccer player. We love watching our children play and it is rewarding to watch not only them, but the other children grow in their skills and love for soccer. I will be forever grateful for my ISB experience and the strong foundation it provided me for learning and performing, whether that be in academics, music, or athletics. ISB enriched my life and helped me gain confidence in myself to achieve anything I aspire to. Happy 70th anniversary ISB!!

While I loved the music program, Soccer, Rugby and Track and Field were my life, and have been the foundation of a love of competing, being active, and staying healthy throughout my life. Touch Rugby isn’t as popular here in the United States, but my sister, Erica and I played on the women’s (Tackle) Rugby team at BYU. I am so grateful for Coach Jen Fry for preparing me for that! I had other amazing coaches including coaches Harold Albert, Connor Duffy, Peter Straub, Amanda Hermann, and Terri Hinkel, who inspired me to work hard and helped develop my character on the field and off.


I loved IASAS! I loved traveling to all the different schools and competing. I still remember some of those moments of triumph and the comradery with my teammates and it makes me smile. I also remember some of the less triumphant moments. So many life lessons came from these experiences, and now I get to use them for my current life.

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Rebecca Gray Gibson and Sir ‘Tip’ Gibson Rebecca Gray Gibson attended ISB together with her future husband, Sir “Tip” Gibson, during the 199293 and 1993-94 school years. Both of these ISB alumni were part of the Class of 1996. After the ’93-’94 school year Rebecca’s family returned to Australia while Tip’s family moved to Singapore where he attended and graduated from Singapore American School.

My husband, Sir ‘Tip’ Gibson, and I attended ISB together in 1992/1993 and are both class of 1996 alumni. Sir was a Panther, representing ISB in JV Volleyball, Varsity Track & Field and Varsity Rugby. Sir tells me that I always had a book in my hand at school - the quintessential pairing of a jock and a bookworm. At 14 years old, I knew that I was going to marry him though, even professing my love for Sir by writing down ‘Mrs. Rebecca Gibson’ in my year 10 Math book – Mr. Albert’s class. The book is long gone, but a classmate had seen what I had written and told Sir. And whilst we never dated at school, there was a connection between us which could not be broken despite the distance between the US and Australia. Our lives took us in different directions initially, but soulmates will always find their way back to each other. Sir joined the military as a Mechanical Engineer and I pursued post graduate studies and a career in Business Management - 28 years later we are married, currently living in the US and raising a 14 year old daughter. Happy 70th Birthday ISB!



class erupted when I announced that ‘Pudhila Srisontisuk’ was the first ever recipient. She was very grateful as I presented the check, and then the Governor from her province gave her the plaque and spoke. We all toured the campus and ate traditional Thai lunch in their outdoor Gym.

David Wilkerson on ISB’s 50th Anniversary Reunion David Wilkerson is one of ISB’s most important alums as he is one of the movers and shakers in the ISB Network Alumni Association. A member of the class of 1971, David is best known for his love for Thailand and ISB, and his selfless work to promote International School Bangkok and its alumni. In this story David fondly recalls ISB’s 50th Anniversary Reunion that took place in January of 2002.

Wednesday started the official celebration with registration and a cocktail party at the Marriott Garden Resort and Spa located on the Chao Phraya River. This is a five-star hotel owned by Bill and Kathy Heinecke (both from the class of ’67) and is one of the finest I have ever stayed in. The hotel is located on the opposite side of the river from the Oriental Hotel and a few miles further south. The “Ice Breaker” cocktail party was a blast with about 200 in attendance. The initial excitement, reacquainting and story-telling, is by far my favorite part of any reunion.


On Thursday we attended the opening ceremony at the new campus. It was a very moving two-hour ceremony. It opened with the Elementary School Choir singing ‘Welcome Back’ and later ‘Bridge Over Troubled Water.’ This piece hit home for the 60’s and 70’s group. Dr. Roxy Pestello asked for a moment of silence, particularly for those from the Vietnam era and for those gone but not forgotten, not a dry eye was left in the house. There were welcomes from many faculty and administrators as well as students. We of course presented the first ever ‘ISB Network Cares’ scholarship in the amount of $1000, and the Senior

On Friday there were three activities. First the golf outing at the Thai Country Club. My son and I both participated. The course was stunningly beautiful. We walked it with our female caddies dressed in tropical attire with hats very similar to big Southern sunbonnets and only had to hit the ball, as the caddies did everything else for us. I must say that they could read a put as well as any professional, we felt like kings. Later that day was the Alumni and Student basketball game at the new campus. I did not attend but I did hear it was awesome. Friday night was the Sock Hop at the Soi 15 campus. The setting was in the middle of the campus where the Sala had once stood. The grassy grounds were the perfect place for these festivities. There were Thai food stations around the perimeter and a traditional Thai band on a stage placed on the concrete drive between the Intermediate School entrance and the Elementary school entrance. Pancho and his wife Pranee returned to serve tacos and other dishes from their stand. There was an antique three-wheeled bicycle taxi as well as on old Volkswagen van on the grounds. The van was painted black and gold with “ISB or Bust” and other period graffiti. The speeches were short and the toasts were appropriate as the night moved on. After everyone was through eating, the party moved to the gym, called Rajendra Hall back in the day. It was decorated with theme props, hundreds of black and gold balloons and complete with a video screen and a DJ. The dancing and revelry continued until just before midnight. Saturday night was all it was billed to be. The setting was outdoors on the beautiful grounds of the Marriott. We were facing the Chao Phraya River with staging, sets, audio and video production that rivaled some of the larger concert productions I have been witness to. There were many diplomats in attendance to include

the current Economic Minister and former U.S. Ambassador Unger and wife Ann. The speeches were long but appropriate and the traditional Thai food, dancing and skits were all outstanding. The band was very good, playing music from all decades. The finale was incredible. From a boat on the river, we were showered with 10 minutes of fireworks, the likes of which, I had never seen. It was awesome! We made our way to the pool and hung out till around 2:00 AM. Sunday was the open forum breakfast. As people spilled their emotions for better than two hours, I witnessed faculty, parents, spouses and alum’s alike overwhelmed by the reunion experience. Emotions ran high, tears of joy and the empty feeling of it all drawing to a close was upon us. As I reflect on the whole of things, there are feelings of joy and satisfaction. While I saw change in Thailand both good and bad, there is still enough left. It was a great experience, and I want to thank Freda Williams and her staff for an outstanding job with the 50th Celebration.


Justine Scott Schaub Justine Scott Schaub attended ISB in the late 80s to the early 90s and graduated with the Class of 1992. While she did attend ISB for a semester at the Pakkret campus, her memories of attending high school are very much attached to the Soi 15 campus. Justine’s twins, Xanthe and Nicky, graduated from ISB in 2019.


While it’s hard to soften the contour of memories and file down the sharp corners of the psychedelic colored landscape we navigated through school to make coming of age in a paradoxical backdrop of intertwined dancer’s poles and temple spires sound palatable, growing up in the 80s ISB was defining and remains cherished.

Thai sign stating no more than 8 people should be on the bridge at one time. Certainly, current ISB trip surveyors would have done due diligence and avoided that. But it was all part of the adventure and growing up in the 80s. Our batch of boomer teachers remain unmatched. I will forever be grateful to Mr. Propp for introducing us to “Harold and Maud” and exposing us to classic gay literature.

Enrolling my children at ISB Nonthaburi campus I knew their experience would not remotely reflect mine, with few overlaps to draw upon, but I was confident they would be educated in one of Asia’s top schools. My children never got to slog up Soi 15 in toxic flood waters or jump in tuk-tuks outside school, senior passes wouldn’t include the ‘Townhouse’s’ delectable Krapaow Gai, but the rather bland Starbucks fare. Their ISB was a more manicured and well-groomed version with golf carts in the Thai-style Stepfordesque confines of Nichada Thani. I came to appreciate the facilities the Nichada campus offered including the smart lockers (even though the whole figuring out combination locker was practically a rite of passage they skipped).

My ISB gen-Z’ers world was a woke, well-protected, precisely managed one, and I am thankful for their safety. In spite of the stark contrast between campuses and atmosphere, one aspect that made the Nichada ISB a coming home for me when I enrolled my kids was running into Ms. Tananone in the Community Service office, while it was always a delight to pop in and catch up with my old teachers during school pick up runs. The icing-on-the-cake was having Mr. Harold Albert as my twins’ math teacher for almost three years….what a wonderful blessing that was! And to hear ‘Uncle Harold’ announce their names at graduation was, indeed, a full circle moment.

I remain more attached to the Sukhumvit Soi 15 campus, with the ill-lit bathrooms filled with candy colored caboodles and overwhelming Aqua Net fumes. My children’s ISB had gender neutral bathrooms, a wonderfully inclusive addition. It (thankfully?) doesn’t have a student smoker’s space and a strict no vape devices allowed on campus regulation, as I found out being called into the Principal’s office as a parent. Their school trips included wonderful destinations mostly in Thailand with loads of risk management input and liability forms to fill out. They would never have been able to run wild, hopping off and on Song Taew’s as we did on Chiang Mai 8th grade trip.

On a most personal note, the best evenings spent as a family was on the ISB athletic fields watching my second generation of Panthers compete. ‘Once a Panther, always a Panther,’ I am exceptionally proud of my Panther cubs, and proud to have been a Panther myself!

As president of Thai History and Culture Club, I reflect upon the wonderful memories we formed with our teacher couple chaperones: hiding behind Mr. Griffin when a wild boar chased us in a National Park; an entire bridge collapsing during our photo-op (with students coming away with only minor cuts and bruises ); Sarah Knapp managing post collapse to decode the

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Sang and Siree Chanyaputhipong Sanguan (Sang) Chanyaputhipong and Sireerat (Siree) Sivapetchranat Chanyaputhipong were ISB graduates from the class of 1996. Sang attended ISB for 13 years while Siree returned to Bangkok to attend ISB during her senior year. As you will read, this real-life ISB love story started during that 1995-1996 school year and continues to this day.


There are no coincidences nor accidents - just divine appointments. Having that mindset shift is transformation and enables us to embrace joys with excitement and uncertainty with faith. There is a purpose and a plan for how everything and everyone connects - and ISB, was and continues to be, a massive platform for countless connections, interactions and relationships. To this day, some of the most cherished friendships, memories and laughter were from our years together. ISB truly was the world’s melting pot of nationalities, parents of various professions (ambassadors, business leaders, missionaries, NGOs), students of various life exposures - some like myself [Sang] a lifer K-12, while others change schools frequently with their parents roles and responsibilities. And in this seeming chaos, there were countless stories being written. And one such story that I [Sang] embrace every day is how God would bring my wife Siree to return to Bangkok for her senior year at ISB after having lived the world from Zurich, Dallas, and Tokyo. And that was just the perfect timing for us to get to know one another, start dating and 7 years later - married. Had it not been for ISB, it would be hard to imagine how else or where else we would have met.”

class on my [Siree’s] first day at ISB in August 1995. It had not been an easy transition back for me and an even harder first day in this new school. And who would have thought that one of the first friends I made back in Bangkok would one day become my best friend, husband and the devoted father of our children! Who would have guessed that God was already beginning to write our love story! We had only a couple of classes together and a free period. Sang always seemed to have so many questions to ask me about IB Biology and his math class whenever we met, but I never suspected that he was trying to spend more time with me until he really caught me off guard during one of our free periods in the library. He asked me directly, “Will you be my girlfriend?” I had just answered his question about whether he should align a particular diagram on the left or right side of the page, which I thought was a pretty silly question that does not need my input. I even thought he was joking and laughed so he had to repeat the question. Many shared meals, movies, memories, a 3.5-year long-distance relationship,19 years of marriage, three growing kids refining and testing our love for one another, our story continues to be written. And we are so grateful for how God used ISB to be the place where our love story began.

Our first encounter was in Mr. Hochberg’s Jewelry Workshop

Happy 70th anniversary to the entire ISB community!


Lydia Deane Lydia Deane, or Sarunrat (Dear) Visutthithada as she was known at ISB, is an alumnus from the class of 2005. A student who attended ISB for 13 years, Lydia is one of ISB’s most recognized graduates as she is a famous Thai singer, model, and actor. Interestingly, Lydia shares this 13-year distinction with her two siblings, brother Chayanon (‘Dunk,’ Class of 2008) and sister Sarunporn (‘Ducky,’ 2009). Perhaps most importantly, Lydia’s eldest child, Dylan, now attends ISB and her daughter, Demi, will soon follow. This is Lydia’s story.

My name is Lydia Deane. I was formerly known as Sarunrat Visutthithada or went by my nickname Dear during my time at ISB. I started school at ISB when I was five years old in Kindergarten and I graduated senior year with the rest of the Class of 2005. My younger brother and sister were also 13-year graduates of ISB. Now some 17 years later, I can still say that ISB was some of the best times of my life and actually wish that ISB would’ve had the option of being a university so that I would never have to leave after high school! The friendships made since the time at ISB still remain the closest of friendships now. ISB gave me a ‘family’ and every time I return to campus, it’s like coming back home. During my search for the right school for my oldest son to attend, I had to visit many international school campuses. I always told my husband that ISB was the best school in Thailand and Southeast Asia, and my husband would accuse me of being biased. At the end of each of the school tours, however, my husband and I would always have to agree that no other school could compare to what ISB had to offer! Just the campus itself is already a winner. It made our decision an easy one and now our six year-old son is attending ISB. I am a proud alumnus of ISB and I am confident that my son Dylan and daughter Demi will also be proud to be graduates of ISB. Like they say, “Once a Panther, always a Panther!



Marleen and Anko Gimpel The Gimpel family came to ISB in January of 1990, with younger sister Marleen entering Grade 3 and her older brother, Anko, going into Grade 7. The family stayed until 1997, with Anko graduating with the class of 1995, while Marleen would have graduated the class of 1999. This are their stories of their time at ISB.

Going to Phang Nga Bay; hiking, kayaking and sleeping on an uninhabited island for Week Without Walls. Being selected for a week long boat trip over the Chao Phraya River to test the water in different places for Mrs. Chandler’s science class. Performing on the stage in the new state of the art auditorium for choir and dance. My time at ISB was made special by so many people: Mr. and Mrs. Clark, Mr. Butles, Mr. Soderberg, Mr. Dunseth, Mrs. Miner, to name only a few. The teachers, students, school and Thailand have absolutely shaped me and will always remain in my heart. It felt and still feels like an absolute privilege that we were able to experience this. And thanks to social media I was able to reconnect with a large number of classmates, friends and teachers. When we moved to Thailand, I couldn’t speak a word of English. I now have a master’s degree in English Language and Literature, have been working as a translator/subtitler for over 17 years and have just been selected as one of the ‘Most Preferred Contributors of 2021’ by Iyuno-SDI Group.

Anko: Marleen:

“When Harold Albert asked my brother and I if we could write a piece about our time in Thailand, we were honored. It’s impossible to highlight only a few special things about ISB, but we are certainly going to try. Although our family traveled around the world all of our lives, my brother Anko and I had never actually lived abroad until we moved to Thailand in January of 1990. Our father, who sadly passed in 2013, was stationed in Bangkok as a ground engineer for the KLM at Don Mueang International Airport and we stayed in Thailand until July of 1997. When I, Marleen, came to ISB, I was placed in Mrs. Vogt’s third grade class at the old campus on Soi 15. There are a few things I remember vividly about the year and half there, before ISB moved to the Nichada Thani campus. I remember being chosen to play Mrs. Santa Clause in Rajendra Hall, although I was new and still learning English. I remember the hamburgers with mayonnaise I bought every single day from the cafeteria. The art work made by students all over the halls. Going to the little shop on the other side of the street from the school to buy chips and candy. And during the Gulf War we were brought to school in busses escorted by the police.


And then the move to the new campus. I remember the amazement all the students felt. A school with indoor and outdoor gymnasiums, tennis courts, a swimming pool, an amazing cafeteria and so much more.

“I was 11 years old when we moved to Thailand and I still have a very clear memory of the old ISB campus on Soi 15 Sukhumvit Road. My first few days at the campus I was in awe. The school looked amazing with a track and a baseball field and a cafeteria larger than then my entire previous school in The Netherlands. Even though my English was near to perfect (I even had the accent down) my reading and writing skills were very poor. So off to the ESL class it was for me, where I had wonderful teachers who helped me improve my skills. My first year was a bit different than my sister’s experience, due to the fact that I was a bit older and my restlessness and outgoingness was in stark contrast with the rest of the ESL class. Due to this, my first year was a bit of a struggle and I had to deal with a culture shock. Luckily my wonderful teachers, like Mr. Westgate, who taught about this subject and Cross Cultural Communication, and Mr. Albert were able to identify this and helped me greatly to get through my first year.

After the first year was over I was able to adjust to my new environment and I had the most fantastic time at ISB. Our school trip to Rose Garden, the many school activities and most of all the wonderful new friends I was making from all the cultures of the world, many of which I am still in contact to this day. Also, the teachers we had (some of which I am also still in close contact with) made school a fantastic experience. I remember a Thai man who was a teacher’s aid in Mr. Albert’s class. During geometry class every time he said the work “angle” in his Thai accent, it sounded like my name Anko and I would respond. We also had a history teacher called Mr. Emma who always walked through the class room singing ‘Can’t Touch This’ by MC Hammer which had just come out. I also started getting involved in drama class with Ms. Reba Armstrong, who taught me self-esteem and confidence and to be all you can be. And that wonderfully creative Mr. Hochberg, who taught me woodworking and to make jewelry, and who also had a story telling club which I was a part of. We would sit in the little Thai food stand across from the school where he would buy us a meal or these Thai tacos (which were to die for) while we told each other stories. And then we moved to the new campus; Wow! What a school, with a beautiful library and fantastic auditorium where we would perform our plays with Reba and listen to the orchestra of Mr Hayden Gilbert. I was a bit of a dreamer and even for a dreamer there were ways and activities to distinguish ourselves. With the academics I got fantastic help from Mr. Vogt and Mrs. Bryan helping me with my reading dyslexia. From time to time I would also get into a little bit of trouble and got sent to the Vice Principal. Mr. Kalis, seeing me standing in his doorway, would shake his head, smile and say: “Oh Anko, what did you do this time, my Dutch friend?” I graduated from ISB in 1995. Today I am a Global Security Operations Manager for AT&T and recently moved to DXC Technology. I manage multiple teams all over the globe in Bulgaria, Malaysia, Costa Rica, India and many more. ISB taught me to be social and gave me the skills to communicate across all cultures, which I use today on a daily basis managing these teams. Thank you ISB, for the wonderful experience. And thank you mom and dad for allowing me this experience.

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Meg Farrell Sine and the ISB Panther The Sine family was a fixture at ISB for nearly a decade as two of the Sine siblings, Patrick (class of 2008) and Ben (class of 2012) are ISB graduates (the eldest Sine sibling, daughter Kimberly, graduated from ISM). Mr. Frank Sine and Mrs. Meg Farrell Sine were also front-andcenter around the ISB campus, and Meg was especially active taking a leadership role in the ISB Booster Club. It was her involvement in the Booster Club around the time of ISB’s 60th anniversary that allowed her to be a major force behind the creation of the bronze ISB Panther that is the centerpiece of the entrance to the ISB campus. This is Meg’s story about how the bronze statue came to take its place at ISB.


This Booster Club idea started back in 2007 as a way to use our large accumulated bank balance towards a special, memorial gift to ISB by making a statue of our panther mascot. Nothing much happened beyond the concept stage until the ISB community started planning for the 60th anniversary in the 2011-2012 school year. The Booster Club funded the entire cost of the panther statue. We had set aside around 1 million baht, which covered the artist fees and the materials and factory cost to make a bronze statue using the ‘lost wax’ technique. Building and Grounds funded the installation and planting of the two palm trees on either side of the statue. The artist is Khun Sunchai Kongklom who in 2012 had an art studio at Section 7 of Chatachuk Market. I had been looking for artists for several months and at one point spoke to a Thai national artist about making a black granite sculpture. However, it was way too expensive for our budget!! Sunchai earned a Bachelor’s Degree in the Faculty of Arts at the King Mongkut Institute of Technology in Ladkrabang, Bangkok. He is also the recipient of the Thai National Prize for Art in 2005.

The statue was made at a small factory that makes mostly small Buddha images. But they did a great job making the life size bronze statue that occupies a treasured spot at the front of the ISB campus. When the mascot first arrived at ISB he was black from a chemical patina that was applied during the manufacturing process. Over time, however, the black patina has eroded away leaving the greenish shade of weathered bronze. He’s still beautiful and a great addition to the Home of the ISB Panthers!” The bronze statue of the ISB Panther was officially unveiled at a special event held at the base of the zig-zag walkway in May of 2012 and is now a fixture in front of ISB. As one might expect, the Panther is quite often the focal point of photos for students during special events like graduation, as-well-as visitors to the ISB campus. The Panther statue has now created lasting memories for those who stand next to this magnificent creature. As ISB community members are wont to say, “Once a Panther, always a Panther!

Dr. Ugo Costessi met with Khun Sunchai at Chatachuck and invited him to ISB to meet with the Booster project team to talk about our idea for a panther statue. We asked him to craft a sculpted image that exhibited the qualities of strength, speed, power, concentration and intensity. Khun Sunchai translated this description into a magnificent model (the size of the panther award trophy that ISB now uses for special gifts), which immediately won the approval of the project team. His model impressed us as a powerful and skillful embodiment of the qualities we had in mind.

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Laura Dauenhauer Jennings It is with great pleasure and pride that I share my reflections on the legacy of ISB in my own personal story and journey as a student from 1992-1996.

Our family of four (The Dauenhauers) relocated to Bangkok from Scarborough, Maine halfway through my 8th Grade year. Admittedly, it was a rough transition in an already challenging time of development during those rather painful and awkward teenage years. ISB had just transitioned from the Soi 15 campus to the new facility in Nichada, so we happened to arrive when the whole campus was adjusting to a new home. I recall wearing a large white bow in my permed hair (this was January of 1992) and being lovingly welcomed by my friend Anuja Kedia. Freda Williams always remembered that ridiculous bow as her first impression of me.


When I attempt to convey my experience going to an international high school in Thailand, some of my fondest memories come to mind. These include primarily my experience with athletics. Oh my stars!!! My most memorable experiences of my time at ISB involved sports. What was so amazing for me was that I would have never had the opportunity to compete had I been attending school in the US (this girl does not have the talent for that) - and I am forever grateful I had the privilege to participate in all three seasons of sports in a smaller school environment because those team experiences (especially traveling and competing for IASAS) were epic. Some moments that stand out were: being part of the Lady Panther basketball team as we “won it all” becoming 94-95 IASAS champions on our home court at ISB, winning IASAS in Kuala Lumpur in 1995 for girls’ softball and then achieving 2nd place on our home court for Volleyball IASAS in 1994. Being able to play with a group of such diverse humans and getting

to be coached by incredible coaches like Steve and Phylis Major for basketball, Mr. Smith and Jackie Douglass for Softball and Mrs. Smith for Volleyball dramatically impacted my high school career in positive ways by exposing me to teamwork, humor, comradery and expansion through travel each season to places like Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Taipei, Hong Kong, Singapore and Jakarta for tournaments. As I look back at my album from high school, it is literally filled with images of my time playing sports. Those moments will never be forgotten in my heart, mind and spirit. When sharing about my time at ISB, Week Without Walls is the next unique aspect of my high school education that I bring up to attempt to capture the depth of the education that I received. It wasn’t just about the fact that ISB offers a high caliber education academically; I also commend them for taking advantage of the cultural education available in surrounding South East Asian countries through the lens of the Week Without Walls program. I went to Club Med in Phuket for a sports excursion in 1993, I explored the beautiful beaches of Bali in 1994 as we enjoyed white water rafting, we trekked in Tibet and white water rafted in Nepal and got to explore Kathmandu in 1995 and then I learned how to sail in Hua Hin my Senior year in 1996. These experiences exposed me to places and people that broadened my horizons and worldview. I remember getting to take the most incredible pictures with my Nikon camera. Speaking of photography, I was obsessed with Mr. Griffin’s photography class and would spend hours during my off-periods or during lunch developing pictures in the darkroom. ISB offered world class facilities for both Athletics and Arts. I got to participate in everything from Band to Photography to the most amazing Cross Cultural Communications Class with the one and only Mr. Westgate. I will never forget how he taught us to really listen and hold space for each other as we all came from different backgrounds and perspectives. His ‘happy papers’ were one of the most special parts of my education. He actually scanned and shared one of my papers with me via Facebook recently which speaks to how devoted and connected the teachers were. I recall fondly things like learning how to be a ‘peer facilitator’ with Mrs. Douglass

which I believe began the building blocks for my current career as a medical Speech-Language Pathologist. I assist people from all walks of life in my work at a Rehab hospital in Austin, Texas - a career which I believe the education I received at ISB wellequipped. I attended University of Illinois, where I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Speech and Hearing Science and graduated top 1% of the university achieving Bronze Tablet (summa cum laude) status which then well-prepared me for my Masters of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders at the University of Texas at Austin where I was valedictorian of my class in 2002. The richness of my time at ISB isn’t limited to the education, academics, sports, arts or even the 57 nationalities of people represented. It is also about the beauty of our amazing Thailand that was full of beautiful loving people, rich tradition and the most incredible food I ever tasted. Speaking of food - Bobby’s cafeteria stands out as well - no one in the US believes me when I describe how we had Thai noodles for breakfast, a sushi and sandwich station and all the hot Thai food we could want daily! Combined with the Panther Pops that were made and sold by Booster Club, it was a truly epicure experience. I recall lip sync events, school dances and cultural celebrations that brought our community together. So many beautiful memories were created during my 4.5 years at ISB. We recently got to return to Thailand with my parents, my brother Brian and his family as well as my husband Jon and our three children Noah (16), Mykah (14) and Justus (11) in January of 2020 with a special reunion tour by the one and only Harold Albert. It was a huge gift to get to show them the even more impressive campus and share this place that was such a special part of my formative years growing up. Happy 70th Anniversary, International School Bangkok. I am grateful for all the ways you have served us all.

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Anton Hur Jung-Bum (Anton) Hur is an ISB graduate from the class of 2000. Born in Stockholm, Sweden, he was raised in British Hong Kong, Ethiopia, and Thailand. He is currently based in South Korea. While Anton has taught at numerous universities and is an author, he is best known as an awarding translator of Korean literature into the English language. In fact, his prowess as a translator is known worldwide. At ISB for his Junior and Senior years, he showed his intellectual prowess by winning the prestigious English Award, and the fact that his name is still on the award plaque at ISB is something of which he is extremely proud and thankful. This is Anton’s story.


I was at ISB from 1998~2000 and flew in from Korea, which was going through the worst of the Asian Financial Crisis. But if Seoul had it bad, Bangkok seemed much worse off. Countless halffinished buildings and their construction cranes stood frozen along the skyline. But Thailand was still paradise to me after the pressures of the Korean academic system and the cold so intense it seared like heat. And at the heart of that paradise was International School Bangkok, a place where for the first time in my life I truly felt like I could be anything I wanted to be. Having experienced all sorts of academic environments, I knew how lucky I was to go to school in a place like ISB. A foreign education, especially in the IMF crisis, would be out of the question for me, and my family could afford ISB only because the Korean government was subsidizing half of it. I was determined to get everything I could get out of the two years I was there, to greedily try out as many interests as possible and to get what would end up being the closest I would ever get to a liberal arts education, an experience I cherish to this day. And while I went on to earn four college degrees, nothing prepared me for life more than those two years I spent on the Nonthaburi campus. I shall remain eternally grateful to ISB, especially my English teachers Brian Chanen and Rob Allison, for helping me become more focused in what I wanted to become. I wish ISB all the best as the institution celebrates its 70th year!

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The Alexander Family The Alexander family, dad Michael, mom Terri, and their three children, Ross (class of 2014), Tori (2015), and Alyssa (2017), got to Thailand for the 2011-12 school year. Ross, Tori and Alyssa were very involved in all types of cocurricular activities at ISB, especially athletics, including such sports as soccer, rugby, touch, softball and golf. The Alexander parents were extremely supportive of the school and their children as they were very often in attendance at events both in Bangkok and outside of Thailand. Terri Alexander was certainly one of the most valuable team moms in her time in the ISB community, and she was an important cog in the Booster Club working countless hours in support of ISB activities and athletics. This is their story as submitted by the Alexander children.


In 2011 our father, Michael Alexander, was offered a role with a company in Bangkok. Our parents left the decision to move to the other side of the world up to us, their three children (16, 14 & 12) who had never before traveled outside of the United States. While it was a scary decision, we decided to say yes. Little did we know it would become one of the best decisions we ever made. For six years our family lived in Bangkok and it was a time filled with adventure, amazing friends, unforgettable memories, and many opportunities to grow and learn. Going to International School Bangkok (ISB) was a life changing experience for the three of us. We were given a first class education, with ample learning opportunities both inside and outside of the classroom– something every child and young adult dreams of. ISB challenged us in ways we had not experienced before during our education in the United States, with an extensive curriculum and plentiful learning opportunities. ISB gave us the chance to explore our passions in clubs, cultivate our love for the arts, compete in a variety of different sports, and take on challenging educational opportunities. We were encouraged and supported in our pursuit to try new things and take on leadership opportunities wherever we felt called. ISB molded us into global citizens and allowed us to participate in unforgettable adventures across Thailand, Southeast Asia, and beyond. But, most importantly, we were able to work alongside and learn from locals in each of the areas we visited. We were able to experience different cultures, provide resources, volunteer in the community, and learn about their customs. Our time at ISB allowed us to be involved in IASAS, where we established friendships across Southeast Asia through

competitive sports including (touch) rugby, soccer, softball, basketball, and golf. One of our favorite IASAS memories together was when the three of us were competing at SAS for (touch) rugby. After both of our final matches of the tournament our family ran out onto the field and embraced each other in a family hug to celebrate the end results. More than anything living in Thailand had a profound impact on our family by providing us with time together that we will relish forever. We were able to travel and experience the world as a family. We were able to play sports together and support one another. We were able to make friends that became our family. Still, years after we have left Thailand, we find ways to get together with them. They have been there for us and supported us during the most difficult time of our lives. In September of 2021 we lost our mother, Terri, after a four and a half year battle with cancer. She was our fiercest supporter, and as an integral part of the ISB community, she spent countless hours working for the Booster Club (as a member, Treasurer, and President), being our team mom for sports, showing up to all of our events, dressing up to cheer us and our teammates on, and continuously going above and beyond to be there for anyone who was in need. The entire Alexander family wishes the entire ISB community a happy 70th anniversary. We are so grateful to our parents for this amazing opportunity, and that we said yes!


I played with all the way through junior year of high school. We moved out to Nichada Thani for the start of my 7th grade year, and I certainly appreciated riding my bike to school as opposed to spending 3-4 hours on the bus each day. In high school, many of my fondest memories came from playing sports and traveling for Week without Walls, but I also had some amazing teachers that I will never forget. I played volleyball, basketball, and softball for ISB and had a nice run of IASAS championships thanks to an athletic group of friends. Traveling for tournaments each season was definitely a highlight. It was so fun to experience new countries and meet new friends as we were hosted in people’s houses for the week. The competition was intense and many of the bonds I formed with teammates, opponents, and coaches remain to this day. Some of my most vivid memories include painting our fingernails black during volleyball, shaving Mr. Dougan’s head after winning a championship, the pickle in the dugout during softball games (thanks Mr. Albert for reminding me of that on my last visit), and those darn 2x4 towel slides Mr. Frazer had us do all the time to build our leg strength… ouch, I can still feel the burn. I also loved when the BBA invited MLB players to visit, and we got to play the pros/Dads and get our butts kicked.

Brian Dauenhauer Brian Dauenhauer is an ISB graduate from the class of 1998. He came to Bangkok with his family mid-way through the 1991-92 school year. He, like his sister Laura (class of ’96), was very involved in athletics at ISB, while his mom, Mrs. Donna Dauenhauer, was instrumental in helping the school establish the ISB Booster Club. This is Brian’s story.

It is with immense gratitude that I reflect on my time in Thailand and my experience at ISB. I truly believe it was an exceptional experience that set me up for success later in life in so many ways.


I arrived in Bangkok in 1992 halfway through my 6th grade year and stayed through graduation in 1998. Coming from Maine, USA, was a culture shock to say the least. However, I spent two years in Singapore prior to that, so at least I had some coping skills to successfully adjust. We lived on Sukhumvit Soi 33 when we first arrived and I have fond memories of shopping at Villa Market, rollerblading at Queen Sirikit Park, and meeting friends at the McDonalds at Robinsons. I only knew the old Soi 15 campus through baseball with the Bangkok Baseball Association (BBA), which

For Week without Walls, I spent one year at home doing a sports camp, went white water rafting in Bali one year, and took two trips down to the islands south of Thailand for ocean kayaking and learning about the sea turtles. When I tell people about these trips we did in high school, I always get a jaw-dropping response. Add those on top of the Operation Starship trip we took in 8th grade, and it is just mind-blowing the types of opportunities we had to travel. These were some of the most powerful learning experiences I had throughout my education and allowed me to develop friendships with people outside of my normal groups. The experiences will stay with me for the rest of my life. Some of my favorite memories of teachers at ISB include industrial design with Mr. Hochberg where we learned to wood-work with a lathe, 10th grade English with Mr. Chanen where we learned to explicate poems (or popular songs at the time), and physics labs with Dr. Jacobs where we learned about harmonics. In addition, we repelled off the third story of the school for one science lesson, made a video about water quality after visiting a water treatment plant, and our band played for President Clinton when he visited the American Embassy.

Pretty cool. Another one of the most powerful learning experiences was taking Cross Cultural Communications with Mr. Westgate. It was so interesting to learn about people with different backgrounds and how our perspectives vary depending on our life experiences and culture, but there are very thoughtful ways to understand each other and live in harmony. I really loved that class. Overall, I feel like I got a top-notch education at ISB that set me up for success in college and beyond. I went on to earn a B.S. in Kinesiology from the University of Illinois, an M.A. in Exercise Physiology from the University of Texas at Austin, and a Ph.D. in Teacher Education also from UT-Austin. I am now a Professor at the University of Northern Colorado and prepare the next generation of physical educators and coaches. My life path was no doubt influenced heavily by my positive experiences at ISB, especially in terms of athletics. Thailand is and always will be my home away from home. The people, the smiles, the beauty… it is just all so wonderful, and I find myself daydreaming about it on a regular basis. My folks continued to live in Thailand for nine years after I graduated, so I got to return and visit regularly. I’ve been able to share this beautiful country with my wife and two boys since then and it is now our family’s number one destination. I really hope that someday my boys will get to experience ISB and Thailand as I did. I am so grateful for my time there and wish many more years of success and good fortune for ISB as they celebrate 70 years!

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Daniel and Martin Deckert The Deckert family has been part of ISB from the very early days of the school. There were Deckerts studying at ISB starting in 1959, and the patriarch of the family, Mr. Werner Deckert, was one of the architects of the ‘new’ campus on Sukhumvit Soi 15, and for a number of years served as a member of the ISB Board of Directors. Werner’s son, Rod (class of 1973) returned to Thailand in the late 1990s with his family, and his sons, Daniel and Martin, attended and graduated from the school. This is the story of Daniel and Martin:


From the very beginnings of International School Bangkok, ISB has been a part of our family. Our grandfather, Werner Deckert, was not only one of the architects of the Soi 15 Campus, but also a member of the Board of Directors in the early 1960’s. All of his children were born and raised in Thailand, and each attended ISB until graduation and subsequently moved to Germany for higher education. When our parents, Rod (class of 1973) and Birgit, decided to move back to Thailand, ISB was the obvious option for us. With that we have both graduated from (Daniel from the class of 2000 and Martin the class of ‘04).

experiences, but our entire lives. Looking back on those days, it was impressive how ISB stayed up-to-date with the rapid changes in technology. It was always an exciting surprise to see how the computer labs would look after the summer break! Seeing from afar what ISB has continued to become can only make us proud to be alumni of one of the most special international schools in Asia and throughout the world. And who knows, maybe a third generation Deckert will also one day be a student at ISB? Here’s wishing ISB a very happy and prosperous 70th anniversary!!

ISB was the center of our daily lives growing up in Thailand. Living in quiet Muang Thong Thani and commuting along Viphavadi-Rangsit Road to reach Sukhumvit was always an adventure. In those days there was no Tollway or Expressway and the trip into town was at times arduous. Thankfully ISB moved to Nonthaburi very soon after we arrived in Thailand. The international community in and around ISB allowed us to fully immerse ourselves in learning and sports without having any health or safety concerns. The ‘bubble’ that often gets criticized is only an issue if you allow it to be a bubble. We knew the vast ISB campus like our own backyard, spending many days after-school and weekends on campus. The open interaction with the entire ISB faculty and staff, the cafeteria employees, the guards, the groundkeepers, the janitors, and the maintenance staff made it feel like our second family. That is what made ISB so special for us. The most impressive event at ISB was not a single event, but a journey. Going to ISB during the 1990s allowed us to experience watching firsthand the spread of the PC and the invention of the Internet and how it transformed, not only our learning

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Chris Dunning & Pancho Chris Dunning is an ISB alumnus from the class of 1978. This is his story about his relationship with the Thai gentleman known as ‘Pancho’ who sold food outside of the Soi 15 campus for many decades and is beloved by many generations of ISB students.

I have a story that I would like to share about Pancho. Back in 1967, I was a little boy living in Bangkok and my dad worked for Caltex. I wasn’t at ISB then, I went to Bangkok Patana School. In ‘67, Pancho was a driver for Caltex and he was assigned to my father. We knew him as “Sam”. He was one of the best Thai people I knew at the time (given I was 7 years old). He would take me and my brothers to school in the morning, yakked us up all the time and was an overall happy go lucky guy. We left Thailand in early ‘69 to Singapore saying goodbye to Sam and others who were a part of our life then.

right before Karen took the shot, Pancho asked about my Dad (who had passed away several months before we went to Thailand). I told him about my Dad right when the picture was taken which is why he’s looking at me. Strange timing, I agree. But what we talked about before and after, he definitely had great memories not only of my family, but the kids from ISB over the years that gave great purpose to his life. He thinks the world of you guys!

We moved to Singapore for 2+ years and then returned to Thailand in ‘72. By then, Sam had left Caltex and was morphed into Pancho, a guy selling tacos off his hot plate from the back of his station wagon and I was now going to ISB. When I first met Pancho, I didn’t recognize him...he recognized me. He said “Chris, it’s me Sam” and proceed to give me a free taco. Over the next three years, Pancho actually opened a shop across the street from ISB and you could go in, sit down, order food and have it delivered to your table. I left Thailand in 1974 after having lived there for 11 years. I never heard from or saw Pancho until about 3-4 years ago when I went to Bangkok and sought him out, still working on Soi 15 outside the old ISB campus (now NIST). It was a wonderful reunion and meant a great deal to me. I would like to close this anecdote with another point. The picture that is posted with Pancho and me in it has a story within itself. I asked Pancho to pose with me for a picture and


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After some years as a restaurant manager and tour guide, I returned to the US and there met my French wife. We moved to Paris where I once again worked as a tour guide, mostly bicycle tours in France, Spain and Portugal.

Craig Zapatka Craig Zapatka is a member of the ISB class of 2008. The Zapatkas were a highprofile family while at ISB as Craig and his brothers, Boyd (2006) and Sam (2010), were very involved in athletics and activities as high school students. Additionally, Craig’s mom, Dinah, was very active at school as a coach for volleyball and track, and was also an important member of the ISB Booster Club. Additionally, Craig’s dad, Tom, was on the ISB Board of Directors and was frequently the face of ISB, for as the Board President he was often the person handing out diplomas at graduation.

When the COVID pandemic hit, my company let me go, so it was then I started my company, ‘Elsewhere’, a values-driven marketplace that connects travelers to licensed and vetted travel agencies based on the specific destination. It was an unusual time to start a new endeavor, but within a few months we were profitable and creating somewhat of a buzz in the travel industry. Enter ‘Lonely Planet’, the famous travel book publisher, who had been searching for a partner to bring them into the travel operations realm and saw that ‘Elsewhere’, with its strong mission and high growth potential, was the right fit. After some testing and collaboration, ‘Lonely Planet’ decided to bring us into the fold with an acquisition - which was finalized only a short time ago. ‘Elsewhere’ will remain independent and maintain its core missions to connect travelers to local professionals to plan tailor-made trips. I will continue to lead the company, along with my co-founder, and we intend to make some truly big waves in the travel industry. With regards to my time at ISB, It’s hard to put it into words how much I love my experience as an ISB student! As I write this I get emotional and have flashbacks to my time running between classes, ordering fried rice at Bobby’s Cafeteria, and messing around on the rugby field. ISB will always hold a special place in my heart, I spent my formidable ‘growing-up’ years in Bangkok and there was no better place to be raised.


However, I think if you asked any of my teachers, I was probably an annoying brat, and I could have been a much better student. But my teachers were very supportive and helpful and obviously very patient too :) I still keep up with a few of them, very special people! It might sound cheesy, but something about ISB that will always stick with me is how much of a community spirit it fosters. So much positivity and comradery in and out of the classrooms, on and off the field. I will hopefully be back to visit soon and see how much the school has grown!


from a town to a city. For a while I took a khlong boat to school, walking through the students who were gathered at the ‘Shack’ at the end of the soi. The klongs on either side of Sukhumvit and other main roads were filled-in and turned into streets. The electric street cars were retired and people started to complain about the traffic.

ISB from a Henderson Perspective Larry Henderson came to Bangkok with his family in 1958, and later both of his children, Caleb (class of 1995) and Rachel (class of ’99), graduated from ISB while his wife, Pam, was an elementary school teacher at ISB for many years. Larry would have graduated from ISB in 1969, although he spent his final two years of high school in the US before heading off to Abilene Christian University, where he is currently working as the Missions Coordinator. It is worthy to note that Larry Henderson is a world class skydiver. This is Larry’s story about his years in the ISB community.


The campus continued to grow and Coach P. E. Rajendra continued to train students in a variety of athletic endeavors. The khlong behind the gym was filled-in and the local baseball program really took off. Every inch of the campus was put to use, and the ISB traffic directors did a fabulous job of routing buses and cars in and out of the cramped school at the end of a narrow Soi off a crowded Sukhumvit road. Something had to give, although we have to fast forward many years before action was taken.

We left Thailand when our youngest child graduated in 1999, but have continued to return at least once per year until the COVID-19 pandemic hit. We are always gratified to learn that ISB has continued its task of providing a quality education in the English language for children of all nations, religions and cultures. This journey has continued through political drama, economic hardship, natural disaster and other significant challenges, but we are proud to be Panthers and grateful for the blessings that we have received through the International School Bangkok. Happy 70th ISB!!

I don’t remember the exact date, but the ISB Board began looking for a new location where a new campus could be planned from the groundup, with plenty of room for expansion. After a contract was signed with the Nichada company, Bill Reinsch convened an ad-hoc group that met regularly to help design appropriate baseball/softball fields in the designated space. Since both of our wives were teaching at ISB and our families were deeply engaged in the BBA, Kelly Davidson and I were happy to be a part of that conversation and privy to much of the initial work on the new campus. My parents moved to Bangkok as Christian missionaries in February 1958, when I was six years old. I enrolled at ISB, then located on US Embassy property behind AUA, off Rajadamri Road near Lumpini Park. Those were unique days in Bangkok, with little traffic and much freedom to move around and experience life in a new culture. When I was in third grade, the Bangkok Boys Baseball League (BBBA, later BBA) was started with practices in Lumpini Park and games in the National Stadium! I am still in contact with Geoff Levy and others from that first Little League baseball team we played on in 1960. The next year I started fourth grade in the new ISB facility at the end of Sukhumvit Soi 15, as Bangkok began to change

In the early 1990’s our family moved from the Sukhumvit area where I had lived most of my life, out to a developing Nichada community. The lake was being dug, roads were being paved, and teacher housing was under construction. We bought a small townhouse in the neighboring Pope-Suk village and lived there for almost a year until our condo was completed and we could move into Nichada. There were many run-ins with snakes—mostly cobras and pythons—as the swamp land was transformed into a school with nearby housing estates. The campus security did a good job keeping their eyes out for cobras, but John Mark Davidson elected to ignore the baseball hit to him and wait for the snake to get off the field. Security killed a cobra in front of my wife’s kindergarten classroom door and the blood proved to be quite difficult to wash off. I remember that both students and teachers were very careful to dodge snakes on the sidewalk leading to school dances in the gym at night.

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The Dauenhauer Family My name is Donna Dauenhauer, and I am the mother of two ISB Alumni, Laura Dauenhauer Jennings, class of 1996, and Brian Dauenhauer, class of 1998. We arrived in Bangkok in January of 1992. It was the inaugural year of the opening of the new ISB campus in Nichada Thani. Our children, like all the other ISB students, were new to the beautiful K-12 campus in Nonthaburi. Brian was in 6th grade and Laura was in 8th grade.


Our first home in Bangkok was a condo at La Kris Tower on Sukhumvit, Soi 33. The children’s commute to school each morning began in the dark, with a 6:00 a.m. bus pick-up. Because they were both involved in sports, their commute back home on the activity bus also returned them in the dark. There was not

much down time for friends or relaxation, just dinner and homework. The days to follow were the same, and they protested, “We have no life!” We had to make a change. In June of 1992, my husband Terry made a sacrificial decision to rent a home in Nichada Thani, walking/biking distance from the school, and to, unfortunately, increase his work commute to Bangna to approximately 5 hours per day. He did that trek daily for the next 6 years. Laura and Brian were ever so grateful to him for “giving them a life” near friends and school. Life in Nichada Thani, near the school campus, was not only great for our children, but also for us as parents (mostly moms). Like the children, I was able to hop on my bike, ride to the school, and become involved in the school activities. I joined the PA (Parents Auxiliary, later became the PTA, Parent/Teacher Auxiliary), Booster Club, and Girl Guides. My husband coached and umpired for Baseball (BBA, Bangkok Baseball Association) on the weekends. More and more, ISB families were moving out of the city and joining the community that was slowly growing up around the school. My favorite ISB volunteer role was with the Booster Club. Activities Director, Freda Williams, and Athletic Director, Dave Dougan, spearheaded the creation of this group of parents who would help to fundraise and promote school spirit for the high school sports at the new campus. With the move to Nichada Thani, there was such a longing for the traditions of the old Soi 15 campus, traditions that wove the

community into a tight-knit family. The long commute to the new campus and the new buildings made that community feel that something was lost. The new campus and community truly needed a ‘Boost’ -- to build on old traditions and create new ones—and the Booster Club filled that need. As a parent, what I enjoyed most about ISB were the friendships I made through the many sporting events and school activities. Our daughter and son each played three high school sports a year (unheard of in the U.S.): Volleyball, Basketball and Softball, in the IASAS program. When ISB was not hosting a tournament, we parents traveled with the teams to away games to Singapore, Manila, Taipei, and Kuala Lumpur. Supporting the teams and cheering them on together created a lasting bond for us parents. And working in tandem with teachers and coaches to support ISB students and encourage school spirit was an added bonus. Freda Williams (Activities Director and later, Alumni Director) became one of my dearest friends and mentors, as we later worked together to create a celebration for ISB’s 50th Year Anniversary in 2001. I will never forget her dedication and fierce devotion to the students at ISB—present and past. ISB not only enriched the lives of my children with an exceptional education in a state-ofthe art environment, surrounded by a diverse culture of excellence, but also offered me ways to use my talents and expand my horizons. I am so grateful that our assignment took us to Bangkok, and that the school we chose was ISB. Happy 70th Anniversary, ISB! Our entire family is grateful for the fond memories!


John D’Ambrosio John D’Ambrosio is a retired career U.S. Army Special Forces (Green Beret) officer and alumnus of ISB. Raised in the US Embassy circuit in Southeast Asia for the better part of 17 years, Burma (now Myanmar), Laos, Philippines, and Thailand. Being exposed to a vast array of cultures and experiences during these formative years of his life, he returned to finish high school and attend college, and begin his Army career. After the U.S. Army, working as a civilian in IBM, the Pentagon, the U.S. Army at Ft. Sill Oklahoma, and Homeland Security in the Pacific Northwest. He continued collecting experiences and perspectives which he shares with his readers. His debut novel, 33 Years in 3 Days, is a romantic adventure in the transformational fiction genre. Well-traveled in Asia, Europe, the Caribbean, the Americas, the Middle East, Australia, New Zealand, and Djibouti, Africa; even hiking the Inca trail in Peru, he describes as being a transformative experience. Below are John’s thoughts on his time at International School Bangkok along with a poem.

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Attending an International School like ISB, provided us a unique opportunity based on a multicultural exposure, in a multilingual environment, among a well-rounded student body. We were willing to learn, share, and attain goals set for us and those we set for ourselves set. Opportunities were rife for those who pursued them, and classmates supported each other with admiration and acceptance. Never before had I so many friends from such diverse backgrounds and never would I again. In no other school was the Vice-Principal/ Headmaster included within our circle of friends. We greeted Mrs. Bunnag daily in the hallways with two-way, light-hearted banter among her stern, yet motivational, quips. In all my years of schooling she was the ONLY administrator I knew, and completely involved with each student, having their best interests at heart. Many of our teachers were similarly friendly, but Mrs. Bunnag, Roger Welty, Mr. Marshall, and Will Way were my guiding lights. Never again would I experience this. Never again would I be so far separated from my circle of friends, but it seemed like no time passed between us when meeting again. It was a unique time in our lives.

Poem: The Magic of ISB Never before and never againded, Would I see a garden of students so well-attended. Never before and never againded, would I be among classmates of friends so well blended. Never before and never againded, would I look forward to each day among the new family I friended. School was so alive through the learning and pressure of tests among the fray, We used lunch, sports, and extra-curricular activities to escape challenges of the day, Small squirmishes we had on the field never got in our way. Never before and never againded unknowing the changes summers would bring, Never before and never againded coming back I looked forward to that class bell ring. Never before and never againded when the time came and each school year ended, From all of my classmates with best wishes, I was sended. Never before and never againded, as I moved to new schools, never the same was I befriended. There were now cliques and clacks, Jocks and whacks, Nerds and birds, and even tallywhacks. Seeing long lost ISB friends from time to time hasn’t yet ended. The past is time not lost, just merely bended. As years pass so have some souls, still present are the memories to us they lended. Now they’re in another far off place, where eventually we all be sended. Thinking of my ISB friends always brings a smile or happy tear. No doubt that someday together again, we will be conjoined with similar cheer. Feeling alive as we did with our family of friends by our side, When our time comes we cannot deny. Never before and never againded, No doubt our family of friends will also be transcended. While those who are welcomed, with others will wait,For our family of ISB friends at the Rainbow Bridge gate.”


Okkar Win Okkar Win came to ISB in 1989 when his family moved from Myanmar to Bangkok. His story includes time at both the Soi 15 campus and the new campus at Nichada Thani in Pakkret. It also includes a heartwarming element as he meets up with and marries his classmate from 1999, Pat Rojanavanich.

My two siblings and I started at ISB when our family relocated to Thailand from Myanmar in 1989. The Soi 15 campus on my first trip felt like Disneyland compared to the local school back home. My English language skills were minimal, so I felt anxious but at the same time excited on my first day in 3rd Grade. One of the kindest persons I remember from my first days was Mrs. Nancy Vogt, my 3rd Grade teacher. She welcomed me with open arms and for this I have always been grateful. From those early days on I knew I would be in good hands. I will also never forget Dr. Waldemar Sailer, my 4th Grade teacher. He encouraged me to write a story every week to improve my English, and it was because of him I was out of ESL in record time. Ten years later in 1999, I graduated from ISB at our new campus in Nichada Thani. It was a bitter sweet moment to leave ISB, though to this day, ISB has remained with me. ISB taught me about diversity, openness, international relationships, and daring to dream. In high school there were many teachers and faculty members I will never forget, like Mr. Ron Kalis, our Vice-Principal, Mr. Harold Albert, my Algebra teacher, and Mr. Bob Nichols, my Economics teacher. They truly understood students, they knew our psyche, and they were our friends.

I have been fortunate enough to be based in Bangkok since my marriage to Pat in 2011. Most of my friends now are from ISB and from other international schools in Bangkok. We frequently connect and reminisce about the old days. Some of these friends now have children who are studying at ISB and they couldn’t be happier. When Pat and I had to a chance to visit ISB in 2018, the nostalgia was overwhelming! We highly recommend any alumnus to do the same. The wide range of emotions will bring tears to the eyes of any former ISB student. Finally, we would like to thank everyone at ISB for nurturing us since day one. ISB will always be in our hearts! Here’s a big congratulations from Pat and I on the ISB 70-Year Anniversary!

I went on to finish my Bachelor and Masters in the UK. During the start of my Masters, I got my biggest gift from attending ISB, as I met my future wife, Patcharin (Pat) Rojanavanich, who was close friend and fellow classmate from the ISB Class of 1999. As luck would have it, she was also doing her masters in London. Pat had started studying at ISB in 6th Grade after moving from another school in Thailand. She finished her Bachelor at Thammasat University and continued her post-graduate studies in London. It was there that we reunited and fell in love.


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Eleanor Jones regarding Mr. Bob Miller Eleanor Jones taught first grade at ISB for many years; later she was a school administrator at a number of schools both overseas and in the U.S.. Both of her children, Carl, class of 1989, and Sarah, class of 1990, graduated from ISB, while her then husband, Milton Jones, was the Head of School. Following the death of Mr. Bob Miller, an ISB security guard who was a retired Marine, Eleanor wrote this piece for the school yearbook, the Erawan, entitled, “Remembering Mr. Miller.”

Bob Miller, who was he? For many of us at ISB he was “a man with a mission”. Each day we passed him standing (seldom sitting), until late afternoon, or when the traffic flow onto the ISB campus was light, and he always had a greeting for each of us. To the many old-timers he would ask how we were, or if we had heard from so and so. There were times when we asked him how he was, and we never liked to hear that his leg was acting up, or that he had a cold, because we knew that in spite of the malady he would be on duty. I am not certain that many of us even realized, until the morning came when he was not there, that he instilled in ISB a sense of responsibility. There was an empty feeling, a missing element, with his absence. He never shirked his job; he was always there on duty, and if modeling is a form of teaching, then Bob taught us all what it meant to be on the job, rain or shine, in sickness and in health. He was a man with a mission, after all. He had his own mission which was the fulfillment of his responsibility toward work, but his unspoken mission was helping us all learn that a job does make life worth living, that a job well done does make a difference. I wish I could have said, “Thank you, Bob, for fulfilling your mission so fully, while passing on to us that sense of responsibility that you modeled each day. We will not have “Morning” called out to us now, but I dare say that very few of us will ever pass that gate at Soi 15 campus without hearing the echo of the man who touched us all. “Good Morning, Mr. Miller!” (Editors’ note: Mr. Robert Miller died of cancer on March 28, 1989.)


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Harold Albert regarding Khun Somkiat Ureeruk Harold Albert has been at ISB since 1982 as a high school math teacher, coach, and assistant athletic/activities. These days he is as a semi-retired septuagenarian assuming dual roles as ISB’s alumni coordinator and the Conference Administrator of IASAS. The father of two ISB alumni, Achara (class of 2004) and Liliana (2009), he is the proud grandfather of two rambunctious grandsons and thoroughly enjoys the fact that he is still doing meaningful work in his 70s. This is Harold’s story about the retirement of long-time ISB security guard, Khun Somkiat Ureeruk.

In mid-December we received notice about the retirement of long-time ISB security guard, Somkiat Ureeruk, after nearly three decades of faithful service. As the ISB staff member with the longest history at the school (that is to say, I’m the oldest guy on campus!), I was asked to drop by the front office for his farewell celebration, muted as it was due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I was happy to do so as I had been greeted almost daily by Khun Somkiat’s very distinctive, “Sawatdi, Khlap.” This retirement notice got me to reflect on another ISB security guard from some 33 years ago, a retired Marine by the name of Bob Miller, who greeted everyone with an equally distinctive, New England-accented, “Good morning!” The similarities between these two gentlemen were striking, and I was reminded of an article by a former colleague, Ms. Eleanor Jones, who extolled the virtues of Mr. Miller and his attitude that a job worth doing well was a job worth doing. I am certain Khun Somkiat felt the same way, and if given the opportunity, I was hoping I would have the chance to tell him just that.

me as his role model for someone working at ISB, as I was always smiling, happy and cheerful. To say that I was floored would be an understatement, but I recovered sufficiently to say some nice words about his work ethic, mentioned his similarities to our former security guard, Bob Miller, and then was able to take some photos with this fine gentleman. Khun Somkiat Ureeruk put his heart and soul into his work at ISB and considered the school as his second home. He is well-respected and loved by the entire ISB community, and all of ISB and I wish him all the best and great happiness in his retirement! Sawatdi, Khlap!!

At the small gathering, I learned that Khun Somkiat’s family had been connected to ISB for two generations. His father-in-law, who was a carpenter at the school, encouraged him to apply for the security position at ISB, and Khun Somkiat’s daughter, Khun Ann, has been working in the ISB Bookstore for many years. Various people at this gathering stood up and spoke in support of Khun Somkiat and his time at ISB, but what happened next was quite astounding. Thai Headmistress Khun Usa Somboon was talking about Khun Somkiat, and then casually mentioned that of all the people in attendance that afternoon, Khun Somkiat was most pleased that I was there, as he regarded


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Anchal Pathela Anchal Pathela attended ISB from grade 1 through her graduation in June of 2000. Many of her family members have attended ISB and her children are currently Panthers. This is her story about the transition from Soi 15 to Pakkret and her lasting memories as an ISB alumnus.

ISB has been there throughout my life - it has been where I began my journey from a young age and I have nothing but fond memories of my days at ISB. It all began at the Sukhumvit 15 campus in Grade 1. Here I was running around the playground with my friends playing tag, chasing each other around the roundabout in the middle of the campus and playing hopscotch. The Elementary playground used to amaze me particularly the monkey bars and slides where I often pretended to be a gymnast. When we were told ISB was moving to Nichada it was a completely foreign territory to most of us! It was really far but once we got there, I could see why we moved - it all made perfect sense.

that we were in the finals 3 out of the 4 years that I was on the IASAS soccer team during my high school years! I graduated from ISB in 2000 and have been back since for several of my families’ graduations and it never ceases to amaze me! ISB feels like an extended family to me! I am super grateful to have been part of such an amazing school which has helped me accomplish many goals in my personal and professional life. ISB has supported me to become who I am today and I hope I can make many more memories with this amazing school! Happy 70th birthday to ISB!

Having seen ISB over my years there, I appreciated the facilities as time went on. Until today I believe ISB has the most beautiful and well-equipped school campuses I have ever seen! All the greenery, fields, high tech classrooms, and sports complexes made the move a lot easier! One of my best memories at ISB would have to be the IASAS soccer finals which was held at ISB in 1998. ISB vs ISK…the score was 0-0. About 15 minutes into the first half Tyler Caudle was taken down and awarded the penalty kick. I naturally remember as if It were yesterday – Mr. Albert was screaming from the sidelines “Anchal, you take it!” As nervous as I was, I knew this was our golden opportunity to take the lead! I fired the ball into the top right corner and everyone cheered! We went on to win the game 2-1 and were delighted as we had won the IASAS soccer tournament on home grounds! It was with the guidance of Mr. Harold Albert and Mr. Andy Davies



My name is Amber Barnett Traub, I graduated in 2013. My 13 years at ISB had an immense impact on my life, as well as on my two brothers who also attended K-12.

Amber Barnett Traub Amber Barnett is one of those unusual ISB graduates who spent 13 years (Kindergarten through 12th grade) at International School Bangkok graduating with the class of 2013. Her older brother, Shea (class of 2010), and her twin brother, Spencer (also 2013, of course) also attended ISB for 13 years. Additionally, Amber’s mom, Liz Lu, was and still is an important member of the extended ISB family, as she is currently operating the very successful Bumblebee Free Library, just a stone’s throw from the ISB campus in Pakkret. Of note in this great story is the connection that Amber has with IASAS.

In such a transient community, as a young child I would sometimes wonder, “Why does everyone move away after a couple of years, while I stay in the same place?” However, as I matured, I came to learn that this was one of the greatest gifts ISB had to offer. It gave me a place in a global community, in which I could find a dear ISB connection in any corner of the globe that I might stumble into.

books and free English lessons to the children of Pakkret. From borrowed space at a food shack, to a single-room shophouse, Bumble Bee Free Library has since moved to a rented 2-story house across from Que Pasa restaurant. Neighbors of many nationalities, including ISB high schoolers, continue to volunteer to support the library. The library hosts teen volunteers throughout the year, as well as during ISB’s annual community service program GCW, now renamed DELVE. Needless to say, ISB will have a presence in our family’s life for many years to come. Happy 70th anniversary & Go Panthers!

I feel that IASAS embodied this wonderful global experience the most – I had the privilege of competing in IASAS tournaments in high school for softball and forensic speaking, and traveled to Singapore, Jakarta, and Taipei. I made friendships in those tournaments that transcended borders, time zones, and cultures. In fact, those friendships changed my life. In my senior year, I was in Taipei, about to go onstage for my final impromptu speech competition. Nervous, I decided to kill the time by striking up a conversation with a friendly rival from TAS. She calmed my nerves, and a friendship blossomed. That once-rival, now friend soon introduced me to another TAS student, Justin Traub - who ended up becoming my husband 6 years later. We will be celebrating our 10th meeting anniversary next year. So, you could say I owe a lot to IASAS! :) ISB will always have a place in my heart. Once my brothers and I flew the nest, my very active mother Liz Lu -- who nurtured and supported the three of us during our 13 busy years at ISB -- decided to continue nurturing, this time focusing on ISB’s local community inside and outside Nichada. Following a lifelong dream, she opened up a free library offering access to



I moved to Bangkok in 2000 after having spent one year prior as an ISKL Panther. I spoke half-decent English and remember spending many hours studying (and chatting on MSN!) in an attempt to keep up with my native-English speaking friends who were all getting A’s.

Agnes Valdimarsdottir Agnes Valdimarsdottir came to ISB in her sophomore year in the year 2000 and graduated with the class of 2003. After leaving ISB she attended City University London eventually earning her MA in International Broadcast Journalism. This course of study lead Agnes to some very interesting work as a broadcast journalist in the Middle East as well as her native country of Iceland. Agnes also worked as a part-time flight attendant for Icelandair, and at the same time, began work as an English teacher. Today she, her husband Arni, and her two children live in Iceland and Agnes is teaching English at a secondary school in Reykjavik. Of note is the fact that her mother, Dagmar, has become a world class powerlifter in the senior division.


I was fourteen going on fifteen and moved into a ‘mansion’ in the backyard of ‘Que Pasa’ restaurant as I attended 10th Grade at International School Bangkok. Living in Nichada Thani was every bit like living in ‘Pleasantville’ (1998): it was a pristine community where every high school student owned a scooter and drove between compounds with not a single worry in the world. In school, what mattered most was getting an above 3.7 GPA, winning Airband and, of course, beating SAS at every IASAS competition. Whilst I don’t recall getting a 3.7 GPA (clearly the least important of the three mentioned above), the senior class of 2003 most definitely won Airband with a hugely popular rendition of ‘Be Our Guest’ from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. I also managed to take home the gold with the girls’ varsity soccer team after beating SAS in the IASAS championship game in October of 2001 (thank you coach Albert and coach Duffy!). On September 11th 2001, Bangkok was, much like the rest of the world, in a state of shock. My limited knowledge of buildings and structures in the United States made me think airplanes had hit World Trade in Bangkok. Turning on the TV quickly resolved that confusion. With so many Americans as ISB the atmosphere quickly changed and there was definitely a sense of “could ISIS attack our school?” lingering around. Now that I’m thinking back I don’t remember that feeling lasting very long, but it did remind me of anthrax threats the school received… Thankfully, if my memory is correct, there was no anthrax. Life in Bangkok and at ISB at the turn of the 21st century was pretty good for teenagers. Looking back, I’m grateful for the experience, the teachers and the friendships made – friendships that have lasted for over two decades crossing multiple time-zones. To me, ISB built bridges that crossed cultures, friendships were made based on a joint experience of being in the same place at the same time regardless of where we came from. What I didn’t know then, but I do now, is recognize the privilege that came with attending ISB, and for that, I am forever thankful. Here’s to a very happy 70th anniversary….Go Panthers!


It was the beginning of summer in 1994, and as I once again said goodbye to classmates and teachers in Dubai, only one thought kept running through my mind:

Arbind (Binny) Bhatia Arbind (Binny) Bhatia attended ISB from 1994 through 1997 and graduated with the class of ’97. He is an investment banker and the award winning author of his novel, ‘Marriage in the Time of Corona.’ Married to Audy W. Bhatia, Binny is a Renaissance Man who is often seen performing his poetry with the musical backing of bands from around Southeast Asia. This is his story of his time at ISB.

‘The fifth school in four years. How the hell am I going to manage another move?’ Throughout middle school and to the beginning of high, it’s all I knew. The first Gulf War in 1990 had us misplaced; Kuwait to Los Angeles, Los Angeles to London, London to New York, and then New York to Dubai. ‘And now Bangkok’, I thought. The first fortnight of 10th grade at ISB had me a bit lost, wondering where I’d fit in given a new environment, and whom to approach for a chat which could lead to friendship. No luck during the school bus ride, nor lunch period or break, so I thought to put my head down into the books until the arrival of serendipity. As I sat in the front row of Health class one morning listening to a lecture on sex education my eyes were caught by the attendance monitor, a very pretty girl who I had seen around campus. As she was on her way after picking up the slip on the door, my attempt to focus attention back to the teacher was interrupted by a classmate sitting right next to me who had been also been observing the visitor.

which would ultimately be known as the “Natural High Crew”. But it wasn’t only the friendships made during the three year episode at ISB which still remain with me today. The tutelage provided by educators and mentors such as Bob Nichols and Freda Williams (May their souls rest in eternal peace) went beyond academics. Whether it was the unruly changes being implemented by an incoming new principal or the control dynamics of coaches and teachers, all observations I made were heard with due guidance being provided, allowing me to maneuver effectively with the key learnings of how life really works. A plant is seldom aware of who grounds its seed, but how can it not appreciate the reason for why it was done, once it flowers beyond expectations and begins bearing fruit. The essence cannot be illustrated or captured by sharing the pictures below and the memories above, but as I reflect, it certainly leaves me with sense of humility and gratitude for my alma mater. So, with the pride of a Panther, here’s wishing the International School Bangkok nothing but the best of wishes for its 70th Anniversary! Cheers!

‘Wow’, whispered Franz Huber to me with his eyebrows raised. ‘Do you know her name’, I muttered back. ‘Boys, since you seem so interested in the topic of discussion, I am assigning you both a project which you must present in class next week’, Mrs. Crosser interrupted.


Ah the pitfalls of adolescence! By the time we had finished researching the project assigned to us a bigger group was being assembled, diverse yet somewhat likeminded characters, one


First and foremost, Happy 70th Anniversary to ISB. How the school has grown! It is wonderful to see.

Claire Worp Claire Worp attended ISB from grade 7 through graduation in 1992. Of Dutch and Thai background, Claire was quite active at ISB as she was involved in IASAS Cultural Convention Dance, and clubs like Greenspace and the Thai History & Culture Club. After graduation, Claire attended Hotelschool The Hague earning her degree in 1998. She has been working in Asia since 2007, and she and her family currently reside in Hong Kong where she is Regional Head of Corporate Communications Asia for Rabobank.

My journey with ISB started when I turned 12 years old – a shy Eurasian with a British accent. Stepping through those white rolling gates at the Sukhumvit Soi 15 gates was rather daunting. I can still remember the giddy feeling of excitement of going to a ‘big’ school and being afraid of the unexpected. Luckily, I did not start the journey on my own. I knew friends who also moved from Bangkok Patana (back then BPS only went to Grade 6) to ISB that year and so I felt safe. I joined familiar faces in the crowd….and so began my journey at ISB. I thought it so cool to be going to an American High School – like the ones I was gawking at in movies and tv shows. People were friendly, helpful and soon enough I picked up the American slang – much to the chagrin of my parents. Funnily enough, they also started to use words such as ‘cool, dude, like, and awesome’ when they spoke to me and my brother Markwin. I have to say that now it is my children who are being Americanized without even having gone to an American school.

some hard lessons were learned along the way after I graduated and left Thailand in 1992 which thankfully only made me stronger. After having lived in Europe for 12+ years, starting a family and career in Corporate Communications, I returned to Asia and have been living here for 16 years and counting. I am proud of my achievements and this is thanks to the strong foundations of my youth and the open culture that I was exposed to at ISB. The values and beliefs instilled helped me be an empathetic leader who listens to diverse opinions before making a decision. This ‘inclusiveness’ is thanks to the many cultures and nationalities found at ISB. The one thing I am most thankful for is the lifetime friendships and vast network formed at ISB. Some we sadly lost along the way, but who remain legends, and always in our hearts. One comforting note is that there is always a panther around the corner somewhere in the world.

Over my high school years, I took part in a variety of activities and tried out for the basketball team (unfortunately I didn’t make the second cut) but went on and participated at the IASAS Cultural Convention in KL and Singapore as part of the Dance Team. I was so proud of being part of a team doing what I loved and representing my school. Yes, that varsity jacket felt good on me with the different badges stitched onto it! I think I still have it stored away at my parent’s home in Bangkok.


ISB was a place where I gained self-confidence, found a voice, and learned to stand up for myself. There was no discrimination and I could be myself. It was a protected environment, and


Matt Kelsey Matt Kelsey is an ISB alumnus from the class of 2000. His parents were ISB staff members. Dad Ed was the high school Math Department Chairperson while his mother, Ida, was one of the secondary school librarians. Matt received a BA and MSEd from Northwestern University and an Ed.D. from Lehigh University. He is currently the Upper Secondary Principal at Nansha College Preparatory Academy in Guangzhou, China.


I attended ISB from 1995 until my graduation in 2000. In internet terms, Hotmail was the most popular email service, Netscape was still a web browser that people used, and Dogpile was the search engine we used for research. Bangkok didn’t yet have Krispy Kreme, the space between Siam Square and World Trade Center was occupied by the Intercontinental Hotel, and the Skytrain was just an inconvenient construction project on Sukhumvit Road. Although I graduated over 20 years ago, my experiences at ISB still shape who I am today. My memories of ISB are first those of the athletics program; the training season leading up to IASAS swimming in January and the camaraderie among the team as we travelled to competitions in Taipei, Singapore and Manila. I was fortunate to have two coaches, first Mr. Bud Rockey and then Mr. Steve Betts, who taught me what it meant to really push myself. The drive, discipline and love of the sport still lead me to compete as an adult whenever I can – at Masters meets in the US, triathlons in Kuwait, and in open-water races in Hong Kong. My time at ISB also intersects with my career. My parents both taught at ISB, and my decision to become an educator was influenced by their example and that of others who taught me – Mr. Paul Ubl, Mr. Joe Harned, Mr. Harry Patterson, Ms. Jane McGee, Mr. Rob Allison, Mr. Brian Chanen, and many more. Serving as yearbook editor alongside Sid Sehgal was my first taste of leadership that foreshadowed my transition into school leadership roles, and I’ve kept in touch with former classmate Tanay Naik as he has followed a similar path. Dr. Davies won’t stop ribbing me when I see him at EARCOS events – thanks, Andy – and next year I’ll be working alongside former ISB administrator Cindy Warner-Dobrowski at the American School of Dubai. What sets my adolescent experience apart from that of my wife and my friends I’ve met as an adult is the persistent connection

I have to people and memories from high school. I chat almost every week with one of my best friends from ISB, Maungsai Somboon. The rest of my high school friends have spread out to London, New York, Virginia, Silicon Valley, LA, Panama, San Diego, and beyond, and while we don’t maintain correspondence, we always make it a point to stop in on one another when we’re in the same city or for our respective weddings – and pre-pandemic, there was a high chance that we’d all find ourselves in Bangkok for Christmas and the New Year. ISB equipped me with academic and social skills that pushed me towards a great university and a fulfilling career in education spanning Kuwait, Mali, China, and soon Dubai. Yet ISB also connected me to classmates and teachers in a network that keeps pulling me back, in one way or another. Despite having spent the past seven years in China, despite having a condo in Denver, and despite having parents and friends from Seattle to Sydney, ISB is still the first place I call home.


Olivier “Ziggy” Bonard Olivier Bonard, best known as “Ziggy” by nearly everyone, attended ISB as a Kindergartner and then returned to the school for his junior and senior years of high school. A 1992 graduate, Olivier Bonard is currently the Vice President for Hotel Operations at the Wynn Palace in Macau. Ziggy, it should be noted, has been very active in organizing alumni reunions for his class of ’92, and in late March of 2022 married Adriana Lucas in Hong Kong. Congrats, Ziggy!

“My relationship with ISB started in the late 70s when my parents were working in Bangkok and I attended Kindergarten, at Soi 15. I still have vivid memories of my bus rides to school, Curious George books from the library and the enormous pitch outside the Kindergarten at the old campus. There was also a PE Teacher who did quite a clever trick with his hat… our very own man with a yellow hat… 12 years later, in 1991, my parents were once again transferred to Bangkok, and I reattended ISB and graduated with my IB… Wow, what an experience! My first soccer training try-outs were held on that very same ‘enormous’ pitch outside the Kindergarten… but this time, it no longer felt enormous. Fridays would start in Haus München and then slowly make its way towards Silom and Patpong. In those days, it all felt so very normal to us. I remember even driving there in a Land Rover, in reverse, as that was the only gear which was still working. The 1st Gulf War was a big part of our junior year, and as a result, we were off school for nearly a month. As we were recommended not to venture into town, and keeping in mind that all libraries were conveniently closed, we spent most of our time at the beach and running around the islands. So much fun, that upon returning to school, my mates and I were “randomly” picked for urine tests… how the school knew? I still don’t know. It was a wonderful time before cellphones, sky trains and social media… I have so many fond memories of those times … and many firsts, which would shape me to be the person I am today. PS. Urine tests were all negative…



Sabina Vogt, class of 1992:

Anje Vogt and Sabina Vogt Sabina and Anje Vogt are ISB alumni whose parents, Dwayne and Nancy Vogt, were teachers at ISB. The family, including older sister Kirsten, had lived in Malaysia and attended/worked at the International School of Kuala Lumpur and came to ISB in August of 1989 (Kirsten graduated from ISKL in 1989). Sabina graduated from ISB in 1992 while Anje was in the class of 1996. To go full circle, Sabina is now a Middle School teacher at ISB with a son, Maharlika, who is in fourth grade. Both Sabina and Anje have contributed to this story:


Now that I am a teacher at ISB, I often reminisce with my middle school students about my time at ISB. It was such a different time from now. A time before the Internet. A time before constant use of computers. A time before the IB pressures. It was a slower, simpler time. I often talk to my students about how their education is to prepare for life, not just ‘doing’ school and focusing on grades. I talk about how the Habits & Attitudes of Learning are really the most important part of their education because those are life skills. No matter what they do in life, they will need to be collaborative, engaged, and responsible. It is a shock to them when I say that I actually don’t really remember much sitting in a classroom learning during my time at ISB except those teachers who impacted me tremendously (you know who you are!). What is vivid in my mind is my engagement with sports. I was fortunate to participate in IASAS soccer and swimming for the whole time I was at ISB. I was lucky to travel and compete at all of the IASAS schools at some point. I remember being housed by a former classmate with a group of us in Jakarta. It was a huge slumber party! I remember playing against my former school, ISKL, in the finals with my new school, ISB, and losing. I was torn between two schools. I remember developing discipline to balance schoolwork and sports and setting goals for myself and the team; lessons that still help me today. I remember building lifelong friendships that still exist today because we worked as a team. I will be celebrating my 30th reunion from ISB in August with friends coming here from around the world. It will be a great celebration with many stories about our time at International School Bangkok. And with that, I wish ISB a very happy 70th anniversary!

Anje Vogt-Tarmis Volcy, class of 1996 I will never forget being a part of the 8th grade trip to Chiang Mai. I remember so clearly the train ride to Chiang Mai with my classmates and teachers such as Mrs. Chandler. Going to the various temples in CM created an everlasting memory for me. I remember one temple that had words of wisdom on plaques connected to the trees. One quote I still remember is: “Love is a flower garden to be watered by its tears.” I remember the journal we had to keep for this trip and hope I still have it somewhere. The 8th grade trip deepened my awareness, knowledge and love for Thailand with its’ beauty, amazing people, food, culture, and religion. I am grateful ISB created this trip for the 8th graders.


Milton Jones Milton Jones was the ISB Superintendent for five years from 1983 through 1983. He, his wife Eleanor (an ES teacher who became a school administrator herself), along with their two children, Carl and Sarah, came to ISB after a tumultuous 1982-83 school year. This was a critical time for ISB as they needed to put their house back together. Milton Jones skillfully rose to the occasion and the school ship was quickly righted. This is Milton’s story about his five ‘interesting’ years at ISB.


Five years at ISB - what memories! Years full of professional challenges and stimulation; five years full of lively, motivated students and teachers; five years occasionally spiced with frustration, disappointment, and unusual events. But, it was never dull. My first Elementary School Open House for parents in September 1983 almost did not take place for me, the guest speaker. Traffic in the city absolutely stopped that evening because of a fire in the IBM Building on Silom Road. I arrived two hours after I left home, shortly before the meeting broke up. Rains flooded the city for well over one month during October/ November 1983. Each morning I had to get up.at 4:00a.m. to ‘measure’ the water level at ISB transportation office and decide if we could have school. I even rode a bus through one meter of water, accompanied by a boat alongside, to determine if it was reasonable for the bus company not to pick up a child in a certain area.

for teachers AND administrators! When I first arrived, administrators did not have to take the Thai test in order to keep their jobs; then we did; then we didn’t; then we did; and then ultimately, we did! I took the course with eight other wonderful, hard-working ISB teachers and survived, barely! There are hundreds of other stories that come to mind when I look back. Some made me laugh out loud; others made me stifle a groan. All in all, those five years at the place called International School Bangkok were good ones for me. I hope that I played some part in preparing ISB to grow and adapt to its next few years of service to the international community of ISB. I am thankful for the memories!

On July 14, 1984, at 4:00 in the morning, I received an urgent telephone call: ISB was on fire! The classrooms above the central administration building were burned, and our offices were smoke and water damaged. We began rebuilding immediately. So much for a quiet summer that year! After looking at 130 different houses and apartments, ISB finally agreed upon a newly built townhouse as the new residence of the Superintendent. It was to be ready NO LATER than August 1, 1983, so I arranged to move all furnishings from the old house on that date. One month later, the electricity was hooked up, the water pump installed, and the air conditioning operating. My hair had turned even grayer! And, of course, there was the Thai Language problem for teachers. Let me correct that, the Thai Language problem


Harry “Pat” Patterson In the early 1980s, ISB was in a transition period as a completely new administrative team was hired for the beginning of the 1983-84 school year following a somewhat tumultuous period in the early 80s. This following story was written by veteran ISB teacher Pat Patterson and is a wonderful and accurate description of those times.

In 1983 Milton Jones became the new superintendent, and Rob Brewitt the new High school Principal. Their first major task was to gain the respect of the faculty, Board, and parent community. They did this successfully and the Board began to trust their management of the school. Teachers were treated fairly, and improvements in the educational program and budget process were made. Board members Peter Weldon and jay Smith were instrumental in supporting Milton jones’ leadership. Happier, more harmonious times returned to ISB. The International Baccalaureate program was introduced. With this ISB earned a five-year WASC accreditation after being put on probation at the end of the ’82-’83 school year.

As a sidebar to this story, it should be noted that student being honored above, Roong Poshyananda (class of 1986), is the daughter of former ISB English teacher, Khun Lalida Poshyananda, who also attended ISB graduating with the class of 1959. Roong, who attended Harvard University as an undergrad and earned a PhD from MIT, is currently the Assistant Governor of Economic Stability for the Bank of Thailand. Additionally, Roong Poshyananda Mallikamas’ son, Chanon, is currently a senior at ISB and will graduate with the class of 2022. Indeed, Chanon will be a third-generation ISB alumnus!!

Throughout the 80’s, during good times and bad, the school still functioned well, based on the three goals set earlier: high academic standards, a variety of extracurricular activities, and a successful ESL program. Cornell, Harvard, Brown, U Penn, Cal Tech, MIT, McGill, Cambridge, Stanford, and many other fine universities throughout the world welcomed ISB graduates. At the conclusion of the Awards Ceremony in the spring of 1986, high school Vice-Principal Ron Kalis announced the winner of the first European Council for International Schools (ECIS) award for international understanding: Roong Poshyananda. Everyone in Rajendra Hall--parents, students, and faculty alike, immediately rose to their feet to applaud. They were honoring Roong, of course, but also the many other outstanding students that had crossed the stage that afternoon. And somehow everyone was also expressing their joy and pride in being part of this fine school. It was a magical moment, a golden node in the tapestry of ISB’s history.



Mark and Linda McKinney’s Story The McKinney’s (Mark, Linda, Brandon, Justin and Arianna) would like to wish ISB a very Happy 70th Birthday! As a family, we are honored to have been part of ISB for 13 years. Brandon attended for 10 years, Justin for 11 years and Arianna was a 13-year student. We have so many memories from our time as part of the ISB family that it would take up an entire chapter!

The McKinney Family The McKinney family was an important part of the ISB family for 13 years from the August of 2000 through June of 2013. The McKinney children, Brandon (class of 2010), Justin (2011) and Arianna (2013) were all very much involved in ISB athletics throughout their years at ISB, while their parents were equally involved at the school with mom Linda being a room mother, sports banquet coordinator and athletics photographer, while dad Mark was a recreational coach and a ISB Board of Directors member for six years. Each of the McKinney’s have contributed to this story.


When we first arrived, the elementary school welcomed all of us in the 3rd, 2nd and Kindergarten classes. The kids joined the swim team and we were immediately a part of the ISB family.

Justin’s Story As time goes by, I’m ever more appreciative of the education & experiences I had during my time at ISB. I truly believe that ISB helped me become a more well-rounded, empathetic, and curious person. I received an IB education that prepared me well for both university and the working world; I got to travel all across Asia through programs like Week Without Walls & IASAS and learn about different cultures and histories; and I got to meet and build lifelong friendships with incredible people from all over the world.

As I write this, so many memories come flooding back to me like sitting on the NBBL board, uniform committee (only the HS had uniforms), coaching recreational sports, being a room mom, sports banquet coordinator and for the final five years at ISB, the sports photographer. I personally enjoyed volunteering my time as the school sports photographer as it allowed me to get to know many of the students and parents and to work with an amazing athletics department. Mark’s fondest memories include coaching both girls’ softball and boys’ basketball recreational league, always making it fun and ensuring everyone had a great experience. Another memorable experience included holding several positions on the School Board (six years) where he contributed in making ISB an outstanding school. Circling back to our time at ISB, Mark and I enjoyed watching all our kids play sports, compete in BISAC, IASAS (volleyball, soccer, softball, basketball, rugby and touch rugby) and see them become outstanding world citizens. Their education and experiences at ISB are forever in all our memories and we often reflect being a part of the ISB family.

Brandon’s Story I would also like to personally wish ISB a happy 70th year birthday. I was fortunate to be a part of the ISB family for 10 years and feel truly blessed that I was able to grow up as an ISB student and graduate as an ISB alumni. ISB prepared me for where I am in life. I was a full IB student, which helped prepare me for university, and graduate school. Thanks to ISB, I was able to achieve my dream as a Doctor of Physical Therapy. I have so many fond memories attending ISB, but I would say the majority of them came in high school. When I reached high school, I became heavily involved in athletics and played three seasons of sports for four years. I loved my time being a studentathlete at ISB, and have so many amazing memories with teammates, friends and coaches. These terrific experiences I had, ultimately led to my pursuit a career in physical therapy. Furthermore, ISB allowed me to see so much of the world. Being a student at ISB exposed me to so many different countries and cultures, which has led to my love of travel. I was able to attend IASAS events in different countries, and my week without walls trip allowed me to see the beautiful and remote countries of Bhutan and Jordan. My background as an international student now helps me later in life as it allows me connect and treat my patients from all cultures and backgrounds. The ISB community is made up of so many special people and the friends that I made as a child are still my best friends today as an adult. Two months ago, and eleven years after graduating high school, I had an ISB friend from 4th Grade in my wedding party and had twenty other ISB friends and family at our wedding. The relationships fostered at ISB are so unique and special, and they transcend time and distance. I cherish my memories at ISB and wish ISB a happy 70th year birthday, with the hope of many more to come.

Arianna’s Story Reflecting back on my 13 years at ISB has been such an incredible and emotional journey. Being a Panther alumni brings me so much joy and pride. I am eternally grateful for all the teachers, coaches, parents and students that made the ISB community the welcoming home to many students like me. ISB has helped shape me into the person that I am today. Thanks to the diverse culture and travel experiences through week without walls, and sports, I have a global perspective of the world and can connect with just about anyone. During my time at ISB, I competed in four different varsity sports and traveled to nine different countries. In the classroom, I was taught to be creative, inquisitive, open-minded, and respectful. At ISB, education is not just accessible, it also adds value to the lives of its students. The community that ISB has built is unparalleled to any other. I have friends from Kindergarten that I still keep in touch with today and who will forever be a part of my life. To be a Panther alumnus is an honor. I cherish my time and experiences at the school and am grateful to everyone who has been a part of the 70 year journey that made the school what it is today.


Bill’s story

The Heinecke Family Bill Heinecke and Kathy Worthen Heinecke are two ISB alumni (both class of 1967) who have remained in Thailand as a successful business couple. Bill was featured on American television on Lives of the Rich and Famous and has recently published a book, ‘The Entrepreneur: Twentyone Golden Rules for the Global Business Manager.’ Kathy runs her own tour business. Bill and Kathy have two sons who also graduated from ISB: David, class of 1992, and John, class of 1987. Both of the Heinecke brothers attended ISB from kindergarten through grade 12. Eldest son John is a current member of the ISB Board of Directors and has two children, Zachary, who graduated in 2019, and Addison, who will graduate with the class of 2022. Both of these ISB students attended ISB from KG through GR12 as did their father and their uncle, quite a feat, indeed! This puts the Heinecke family in that special category of threegenerations at ISB, and since Zachary recently celebrated the birth of his daughter, Mila, this past September, perhaps it won’t be too long before we have a fourth generation Heinecke gracing the halls of ISB! Please note that the stories below from Bill and Kathy were written for ISB’s 50th anniversary celebration.


I came to Thailand, with my parents, at the age of thirteen. I was no stranger to Asia, as we had been living in Hong Kong and Malaysia before residing in Thailand where my father worked for ‘Voice of America.’ In 1963, I was on the ISB campus at Soi 15 as a 9th grader. I had great teachers in my years at ISB, one of them being Ms. Augusta Gatti who was my French teacher. ISB was a high quality school. During my high school years, I worked part-time in the advertising department at the ‘Bangkok Post.’ I started my own advertising business at the age of 17. My mother had a keen business sense, and she also worked in advertising. I got my sense of business from her. My ISB teachers also had tremendous influence on me, especially my typing teacher, Mr. Hood, and my Southeast Asian Culture teacher, Ms. Joanne Hankins. Although I was accepted into college, my teachers felt that I was ready to start my own business without going off to college, so that’s what I did and never looked back. I also have fond memories of racing my go-cart at the Thai Tobacco Monopoly complex.

Kathy’s story I came to Bangkok and ISB in 1965, when my mother, brother and I were evacuated by helicopter from Vietnam. My dad was working in Saigon, and the American school there was being closed due to the war. I had a great ISB academic year as a junior in high school, but my fondest memories are of the Soi 15 ISB campus fun. My little brother and I mostly went to school by tuk-tuk or by khlong boat. That in itself was an adventure! Classrooms were not air conditioned, and there were many April afternoon classes that were stifling. We found a breeze on the benches in the central Sala, where we shared our brown bag lunches that we mostly brought from home. In the ‘60s ISB students hung out at a bowling alley near the Victory Monument, or the Mosquito Palace cinema on Soi Asoke. At the end of Soi 15 was The Shack, which was officially off limits to students, but it was at the boat dock where many students arrived at school! It was a great student community with many American students having their first overseas experience due to the jobs held by their parents during the Vietnam War. Many long time friendships were made, and I met my future husband, Bill, in Mr. Courtney Hood’s typing class! I went on to have many more years of ISB memories when my children and then grandchildren attended ISB!


Liz Fernandez Wiltshire Elizabeth Wiltshire (Fernandez), ISB Class of 1992, graduated from the University of Edinburgh with an MA Honors in Sociology. After working in a travel agency for a while, she completed a postgraduate Certificate in Education and has been teaching in the UK ever since. Currently Elizabeth and her family live in Lingfield, England where she is a year 5 and year 6 Maths teacher as well as the Maths Coordinator at Lingfield College.

In 6th grade we had to do a project on the country of our birth. This involved a presentation, information packs and cooking food from that country. It was a fantastic experience as we were able to taste food from across the globe. I was born in Sri Lanka, so my mother helped to cook Sri Lankan curry. She halved the amount of chili and then halved that amount again, but it was still incredibly fiery. She said it was the first time she’d seen ISB students drinking and enjoying so much tea. We all had to line up and drink huge amounts of the Sri Lankan tea we had provided. Our teacher, Dr. Sailer, also said it was the first time that he had seen ISB students drinking and enjoying tea. The movie, Good Morning Vietnam, was filmed in Bangkok. The majority of extras were from ISB, so the campus was very quiet for a while with so many Seniors and Juniors out being movie stars. At the end of filming, Robin Williams, Daniel Dafoe and Gregory Hines and other members of the cast of the movie came to the school to play softball. The field was packed and the game went on into the evening because the floodlights had to be put on. Judd Nelson, the movie and television actor, also made an appearance at the school when he came to speak to Mr. Propp’s English class and Mrs. Williams’ journalism class. I bumped into Judd in the corridor and was unaware who he was until a friend told me after the event. ISB Faculty Follies was always tremendous fun. I think the highlight was King Kalis and the Coconuts, a faculty band. Mr. Ron Kalis and Mr. Joe Amato were the two whom I remember most. Mr. Kalis used to have a fantastic selection of floral/palm tree print shirts and shorts to wear for those people who weren’t in dress code. Needless to say, this created a huge incentive to dress within the school code.


School was closed for several weeks during the Gulf War. We started off having policemen on campus guarding the gates and having police escorts for certain bus routes. Then the police said they were unable to guarantee the safety of students and so school was closed. It was the run up to exams so we used to meet at people’s houses to review together. When school was re-opened we had a six day week in order to catch lost time. Staff and students were dead on their feet towards the end of the catch up period. ISB was closed longer than any school in the world (including Kuwait) during the Gulf War! The new campus in Pakkret was brilliant. No more crowded hallways. There was a tremendous feeling of space and light with no mesh making you feel you were inside a cage. The school looked and felt impressive - especially the zigzag walkway. And then Bobby’s Cafeteria - wow! Edible food, proper cutlery and people treating us like human beings. It was great! A firm favorite was the steak sandwich - a lovely baguette filled with meat and mustard that had great taste. A very sad event was the death of teacher Mike Geary. Although he had left ISB to return to the UK, we had a service after school to remember a terrific teacher. He taught us Tai Chi to relax us before the exams. I believe the most important quality of ISB is its sense of community. I always felt part of a close community/ family that cared for the students and staff. ISB gave one the sense that she was capable of achieving anything she set her mind to. We were taught to aim high and reach for the stars. I truly believed I could achieve my goals because my teachers respected my abilities and let me know that they did. I look back at my years at ISB with great happiness.


After graduation I attended hotel management school in Switzerland, and upon returning to Bangkok I worked for my family’s business, a hotel, and then a bank, before I was able to return to ISB as the Japanese and Thai liaison. I’m so happy to work at ISB as it very much feels like home, and the work I’m doing to make the transition to ISB smoother and easier for both new Japanese and Thai students is very fulfilling.

The Morizono Sisters The Morizono sisters, Machiko, Fumiko and Mayumi attended ISB throughout the 1990s with Machiko graduating in 1991, Fumiko in 1999, and Mayumi in 2000. There is still a Morizono on campus as Machiko has been an integral part of the ISB staff serving as both the Japanese and Thai liaison for nearly two decades. Her presence has made the transition to being an ISB student in an English speaking environment much smoother for generations of Japanese and Thai students. A little known fact: the Morizono sisters had an aunt who graduated from ISB in 1972. This is their story as related by Machiko and Fumiko.


For all of the Morizono sisters, I’m pleased to wish ISB a very happy 70th anniversary!

From Fumiko:

From Machiko: As long as I can remember I wanted to be an ISB student, most likely because one of my favorite aunts had graduated from there in the early 70s. My parents thought that the Japanese language was quite important, so for most of my schooling I attended the Thai-Japanese Association school in Bangkok. Finally, in 1987, I was able to convince them that ISB was the school for me. I have many, many fond memories of high school at ISB, mostly connected to my friends, the social life, and sports. I was especially happy my senior year when I was able to get a gate pass and eat lunch at Pancho’s every day. I also remember the American security guard, Mr. Miller, who greeted us every day with his gruff, “Good Morning.” I sadly remember quite well when he passed away in 1989. My class, 1991, was the last class to graduate from the Soi 15 campus, as the school moved to Pakkret the very next school year. Thus, I vividly recall the graduation ceremony that was held at the Shangrila Hotel, the last ISB graduation to be held off campus. I also remember the senior trip that my class took to Koh Samet shortly after the ceremony.

My name is Fumiko Morizono. I am class of 1999 ISB graduate student. What a great number, right? My younger sister also graduated ISB in year 2000. And guess what? My oldest sister is also in ISB alumni and she is currently working in ISB. You can see that we are an ISB family through and through. What made it really fascinating is that we also shared the same teachers; Mr. Hochberg, Mr. Albert, Mr. Westgate, and Mrs. Kalis. They are still my favorite teachers. Mr. Hochberg is the one who made me fall in love with jewelry design and making. I made my mother a silver ring from scratch and she loved it so much. Although, the ring was supposed to be for her index finger but I measured it incorrectly and she had to wore it on her pinky. Mr. Albert was my Algebra teacher. He was amazing with numbers. He tried hard to make math seem easy and fun even if it was not one of my favorite classes. High school made me realized that numbers is not my ally. Mr. Westgate showed me not to be scared to express love and not to be stingy with hugs. I did not feel comfortable saying “I love you, mama” or give her hugs, because these behaviors were not common in the Japanese culture. Now, I share my feeling to people I love. I hug them until they get annoyed.

Without Mrs. Kalis, I would only know these three English words, which are “yes”, “no”, and “toilet”. She taught me to read, write, and communicate well in English. During my career as a cabin crew of Etihad, I have achieved so much because of her. I cannot imagine my life without Mrs. Kalis polishing my language skill. I loved my life in my ISB era. I have had so much fun with friends and teachers. I was not able to communicate that well with everyone because of my English skill, but no one made me feel even a bit awkward or uncomfortable. Everybody talked to me normally and supported me when I was struggling with my curriculums. I experienced some bullying from my Japanese School days, but never once felt unhappy while I was studying at ISB. Because of that, I had the courage to apply and try out for the basketball, soccer, and swimming teams. I got to travel outside the country for tournaments, got to meet and became friends with different nationalities. ISB taught me much more outside the school’s curriculum. The school taught me courage and kindness. If people ask me; if I can go back in time, which school period would I want to return to, I would definitely say “ISB High School Period”!! Thanks to my teachers for being our teachers, mentors, and supporters. I would also like to thank all my friends at ISB. Without them, I cannot imagine how my school life would have turned out to be. I cherish our laughter, cries, and every moment I have spent with all of you. You guys made it memorable and unforgettable. Thank you to my mother and my oldest sister for giving me the wonderful opportunity to study and spend my middle and high school life in ISB. They worked really hard for my younger sister and I to have better futures. I love them so much. And lastly…I promise this is the end. Thank you ISB. You are more than a school to me. You are my magic box full with fantastic experiences!


Laurie Eubank Dawson Laurie Eubank Dawson graduated from ISB with the class of 1982. The daughter of missionaries living in Thailand, Laurie was quite active on campus, especially in sports and in the Interact Club. During her senior year she played soccer, basketball and softball, and was named the most valuable player in the basketball portion of the Singapore Games that year. Laurie is married to ISB graduate, Peter Dawson, a member of the ISB class of 1979, and they are currently residing in Okinawa where Pete is the Chief of Staff for the Marine Corps Installations Pacific and Laurie is a substitute high school teacher at DoDEA schools in Okinawa as well as working part-time with a small foundation in Thailand.


I was born in Thailand, the daughter of American missionaries, Allan and Joan Eubank, who are currently living in Chiang Mai. While attending ISB on Soi 15, thirteen other missionary kids and I lived in a boarding hostel on Soi 19. My strongest memories of ISB center on excellent teachers, wonderful coaches, life-long friends, and experiences among the people of Thailand, as-well-as the plight of refugees. In 1979 several of us from ISB volunteered to help, as thousands of Cambodian refugees escaped into Thailand. For a 14 year-old, it gave me a strong understanding of the fact that even a seemingly helpless teenager could do something good for humanity, and that experience opened my heart to the plight of refugees. ISB, under the efforts of Mrs. Deborah Geithner, and Mrs. Janet Delahanty, and at the request of UNHCR, initiated a drive to aid refugees through donations of food, clothing, money and time. Today there are almost 200,000 refugees from Burma in camps along the Thai-Burma border; and I hope that students from ISB have an opportunity to help these neighbors in the same way.

(Soccer), and my softball coaches. The sports program at ISB was always challenging, with the trips to Singapore, Malaysia, and Hong Kong being the highlights. Other special faculty were: Mrs. Mu Bunnag and Mrs. Sharon Sribhibhadh, who gave sound direction and encouragement as counselors and administrators. Also, I must add that Mrs. Chris Tananone (now a retired teacher from ISB living in Chiang Mai) was my 7th/8th grade Social Studies teacher in Chiang Mai. She instilled in me a love of Thai Culture and a desire to teach.

Special teachers who influenced me at ISB were: Mrs. Reba Kooaroon with her tremendous musicals and plays, Mr. Terzopoulos in AP English, Mr. John Boerger in the early days of the computer, Mrs. Betty Yugala, an inspirational Comparative Government teacher who opened my eyes, Mr. Norm Victor, and Mr. Roger Welty, who helped me gain a better understanding of Thailand, and Dr. Henry Holmes, who always had the energy to take all the new students for the Getaway in Hua Hin. Special Coaches in my life were Mrs. Colleen Perry, Cheryl McCleary and Petra Pruntel (Volleyball), Dr. Mike McLeod (Basketball), Mr. Gunther Glomb and Mr. Jack Nyhuus


Khun Sathit Kaivaivatana Khun Sathit Kaivaivatana has been the ISB theater manager since 1991, just before the school moved from Soi 15 to Pakkret. In 1993 he was in a horrific car accident that left him permanently disabled. With the support of ISB, Khun Sathit was able to return to work at ISB and is currently a permanent fixture and inspiration for everyone at school. This is his story:


I have an ISB caring story to share. In 1993 I was in a very serious automobile/truck accident. I lost two of my best friends and some of my relatives were also hurt seriously. I personally had to stay in the hospital a long time and I was unable to walk. I was a quadriplegic. While in the hospital, I received tremendous support from the ISB community, parents, faculty, staff, and administrators who all supported me and my family. The ISB student body even did some fund raising to help me financially; cards and flowers came every day. I had many visitors and many phone calls. With support of the faculty and administration, ISB approved for me to go back to work even though I was in a wheelchair. This was an unusual circumstance and perhaps something that would not normally happen in Thailand. ISB even built me a ramp at the back of the theater so that I could go to my working area. I was able to become part of the ISB community again because of ISB’s heart, spirit and friendship! This is what we teach our students at ISB to care for others, have strong community harmony, and authentically lend support for others. After so many years at ISB (over 30 now!), this is my most cherished memory of ISB, and I sincerely wish for this type of spirit to continue at ISB forever!


The Gerson Family and ISB Michael Gerson was an ISB student in the earliest days of the school when it was known as the International Children’s Center. His aunt was a teacher at the ICC while his cousin graduated from ISB in 1974. Mike’s four children all attended and graduated from ISB, while his wife was very involved with many aspects of life on campus. This is the story of the Gerson family and ISB.


The history of the Gerson family at ISB goes back to the early history of the school itself. Mr. Henry Gerson, who was a prominent businessman in Thailand, helped in founding in the 1950s what was known as International Children’s Center that eventually became ISB. This was its first and unofficial campus off Rajadamri Road in Bangkok. His son, Michael Gerson, was among the first students who had attended the small institution. Later, Henry Gerson’s grandchildren attended ISB, participating in the ISB community across all four campuses. These were, in addition to the one mentioned above, the ISB main campus for decades on Sukhumvit Soi 15, the Middle School Bangsue campus and the current Nichada Thani campus.

15 campus. Shane was also on the team that won the third consecutive championship the following year. Over the years, there were academic achievements, athletic awards and contributions to extra-curricular activities in ISB life. In addition, Ruth Gerson, Michael’s wife and mother of the four aforementioned Gerson siblings, was involved with school activities serving as a Room Mother in the children’s early years, participating in the Parent Auxiliary for many years, and eventually heading the Parents’ Association for the school. The Gerson’s were and still are proud to be part of the ISB community.

The Gerson family was involved in many activities throughout their years of association with the school. Rachelle Gerson, Henry’s daughter-in-law, was part of ISB faculty where she taught Math, Latin and French in the 1950s. Her son Sidney attended ISB in the early 1970s. The four children of Ruth and Michael Gerson are all ISB alumni and were involved with different programs in the 1980s and 1990s. Monique (class of 1984) was the editorin-chief of the Erawan yearbook, while Colin (class of 1991) was managing editor of the International school newspaper. Furthermore, Mark (class of 1987), Colin and Shane (class of 1993) were involved in the school’s sports all being on ISB’s softball team, representing the school at several Southeast Asian campuses. Colin ushered in an era of winning for the team, helping lead the team to their first ever IASAS softball championship. He was joined by his younger brother Shane the following year as ISB won their second consecutive championship, this one in front of the ecstatic home crowd at the Soi


The Scott Family The Scott family, Graeme, and ISB administrator, his wife, Ali, an elementary school teacher, and three children, Nathan (class of ’16), Olivia (’18) and Joe, came to ISB in 2011. This is their story with a special emphasis on football!

We arrived at ISB after seven years in the Netherlands. As a family of five (one in administration, one as part of the teaching faculty and three students in elementary, middle and high school respectively), we were exposed to so many areas of the school. Going from Europe to Asia and coming from a very different type of school, there were so many changes. Some changes were minor but some huge, and none larger than the change from football to soccer! All five of us are passionate ‘soccer’ fans and when we arrived at ISB, we found our soccer heaven. Fields that were manicured with love and care, and better than most professional clubs could offer meant that my (Graeme’s) usual excuse of, ‘not my fault, it hit a bump’ was no longer going to work. My playing days were behind me, but for our three kids, they took advantage of every opportunity ISB had to offer. Nathan played for the varsity boys team from freshman year to his senior year, captaining the team for his last two years. Olivia also played for four years and was varsity girls captain for her final year. Joe punched above his weight and was awarded ‘teammate of the year’ for three years running in middle school. He has never forgiven us for leaving ISB before he reached high school. Ali was team mum for varsity boys and varsity girls, and shared her soccer knowledge with the Kindergarten and Grade 1 kids. Even I came out of retirement in my final year to coach varsity girls with the legend that is Coach Kirky. That was far more fun that it should have been, and the girls were absolutely awesome to work with.

us was sport. So, a massive shout out to all who make ISB such an amazing place; from the school’s leadership past and present; the teachers who go above and beyond; the local support staff who work so hard and have that wicked Thai sense of humor. And from the Scott family, a special shout out to those coaches who helped shape our kids, build their inner resilience, and provide us all with some magic sporting moments. Nathan is now working for the University of Sunderland in a research role supporting victims of domestic violence. Olivia is following in our footsteps and training to be a teacher at the University of Exeter. And closing the loop, our youngest, Joe will soon head to university to study football/soccer coaching and performance. All of us, thankful for and inspired by ISB!

We all have so much to thank ISB for. All of us made friends for life, all of us learned so much, and all of us fell in love with Thailand and the Thai people. But the one element that united



Mrs. Betty Yugala Mrs. Betty Yugala came to Bangkok as a new bride and teacher. Now retired and living in Bangkok, she is remembered by her former students whose lives she has touched in her years at ISB, which extended from 1966 through 1999. She is certainly the only ISB teacher who is also part of the Royal Family of Thailand. Over the years, Betty worked as the Keyettes Club sponsor, Senior Class Advisor, sponsor for the Thai History and Culture Club, and performances in many Faculty Follies. During her teaching days she was especially appreciated by the new staff each year for organizing a tour of the Grand Palace from an insider’s perspective. Presently, she is involved in local community service projects, is an active member of the National Museum Volunteers, studies Buddhist Dhamma and spends time with her family and friends.


When I tell people how many years I’ve taught at ISB , their expressions reveal their questions. Is she a martyr, a masochist, or just deadwood? All of these cannot be further from the truth. I have as much passion for my students as I did my first year. I have always loved history. I also love the international contact that one gets at ISB. The most noticeable characteristic about ISB is change, and for me the change was always stimulating rather than deadening. In fact, with so much turnover of administration (I worked for 10 principals, 9 superintendents), teachers, and students, ISB is, in effect, a new school every year! For example, the physical changes have been dramatic over the last 25 years. When I first came to ISB in 1966, there were no air conditioners, the snack bar was just a shack run by Foremost Ice Cream, and we had Pancho’s tacos outside, even though his prices never changed for 30 years. The gym was smaller and we had an open-air sala. In 1968, ISB divided into two campuses . The majority of students in those days were American, about 80 or 90 percent, but everyone mixed with each other, no matter their nationalities.

One of the sad parts of change is having people leave every few years after you have developed a relationship with them. But this cannot be helped. What I remember most of the early days was how politically and culturally aware the students were in my first few years at ISB. In 1968 the whole school was involved in a mock U.S.A. presidential nominating convention. In the mid 70’s, we also had a very active Middle East Club; and it was refreshing to see Israelis and Arabs discovering what they had in common; so much more than they imagined. Another highlight of the 70’s was the Eastern Eaters International lunches which featured a different nationality’s food every few weeks, eaten Thai-style off low tables in Roger Welty’s classroom. All of the students who have passed through my life at ISB have touched me, and changed me for the better. And what has been most rewarding is that from time to time, students return after they have graduated and gone on to build their own lives and they let me and other teachers know that we have made a difference in their lives, just as they made in mine.


The Pinvises Family The Pinvises Family was most unique as they had five children attend ISB: Alexander (Class of 2006), Andrew (2008), Ariel (2010), Adele (2012) and Alaina (2018). As their story indicates below, there were Pinvises students at ISB for some 23 years, quite an achievement, indeed!

The Pinvises family had the blessing of spending 23 years at ISB, from 1996 to 2018, resulting in five ISB graduates. As we reflect on our time at ISB, we all come to the same conclusion, “once a panther, always a panther”, for a few reasons, but mainly due to the exposure we received to a diverse culture brought by our involvement in a vast amount of activities. This is something we are most grateful for as it has helped us to thrive in our personal relationships and professional workplaces. Some of the experiences that contributed to our success are our involvement in IASAS, GCW/WWW, community service opportunities, boy scouts, internships, and extra-curricular activities such as wood working and welding. All of these opportunities really helped us to develop an open mind about the world and allowed us to relate to individuals of all backgrounds. However, most importantly, our time at ISB helped us to navigate who we are as a third culture family, which is not something that can be taught, but must be learned through experience. As a blended family, ISB allowed us to nurture some of the unfamiliarity of each culture in a healthy and memorable way, and even help us to find our own unique family culture separate from each culture our parents came from, thus forming the ‘Pinvises’ culture, which is unique to our family. We are forever grateful for our time at ISB, especially for the many teachers and coaches that contributed countless hours to our development, which is no simple task! Each of you know who you are, we are beyond appreciative, and are happy to be able to still be in touch with many of you to this day. ISB will always have a special place in our hearts especially as we continue to develop the friendships we built from our time here.


Happy 70th birthday, ISB!!


A love letter to Thailand (Thailanna): My dearest sweet Thailanna, How I miss thee so! The times we had, the friends we met, those indescribable adventures. We were so young in those days. So full of joy. We were so fortunate to have met in that time. In that place. The serendipity of the gracious Gods silently guiding our paths together. We always had such sweet communion with each other. You graciously, lovingly, freely, tucking an innocent young man into your heart. A boy really, so much younger than you, a boy thirsty for your love. Thirsty for your experience in the ways of the world. Of course, there were always those few bumps and scrapes! Such love does not render itself without pain, it never will.

David Elder David Elder is an ISB alumnus from the Class of 1969. He loves Thai and Indian cuisine, Arts and Crafts, photography and jewelry, and has traveled back to Thailand many times for business and for pleasure. David and his wife Janice have owned and operated Bella Luna, a Boutique and Jewelry store in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, for 35 years. He is the Jewelry Designer and Silversmith. David’s love for Thailand is obvious, as you will see in the following story he wrote, a short explanation on how he came to Thailand, and a part that is really a love letter to Thailand (Thailanna).


mysteries. I thank you for that tiny pebble of serenity that had, unbeknownst to me, lodged effortlessly in my heart. Yes, that love! Just know, my Dear, it has been growing constantly all these many years. Khap Khun Maak Thailanna! Khun Dawit

Please don’t misunderstand, my life is running so smoothly now and there is great love all around me! I am not living in the past. I am a fortunate man and have so much to be grateful for. I am truly alive more and more, each and every day.

One August day in 1966, my Father came home from work, and asked us to all gather around the kitchen table. We were living in Mt Vernon, Virginia at the time. We had moved back from France less than a year earlier. My dad Art had recently retired from a long career in the Navy. He looked excited, and said, “pack your gear. I have taken a new job and we are moving to Bangkok in ten days.” Staring at our blank faces he said, “look it up in the encyclopedia Britannica”! (Pre Google of course) and so we did! The rest, as they say, is history!

Still, the continuum I breathe rests upon the shoulders of our love. That love! Like Los Días de Los Muertos! We always respected our Ancestors and our family. We respected the lives and loves of those that went before. They made possible the life we live today. This is true for everyone! In many ways, even though I had already traveled the world, it seems when I gaze back.. it all began with you. From that first step off the airplane onto the tarmac at Don Muang Airport, that blast of heat warmed my heart instantly. Thailanna, you swept me off my feet with that first whisper of your scented jasmine breath and coconut oil! The mountains of the North, the beaches and islands of the South, we traveled together often. Every chance we had. The sheer exotic beauty of you, laid so freely at my feet. Just know your mysteries were indelibly and forever etched in my heart! Such a blessing for me you were, and always have been. My dearest Thailanna, I thank you for your beauty. I thank you for your graciousness, and your ability to open me to your deepest


I recently noticed on the school website a video about the 1980s and I happened to be in several photos including the Knowledge Bowl team of 1982-3 and Volleyball 1983-4! Great memories!

Roy Kuan Roy Kuan graduated from ISB in 1984. During his time at ISB, Roy was very involved in many aspects of student life including his senior year when he was the Student Council Cabinet President, a member of the Cultural Convention Knowledge Bowl team, and a player on the boys’ varsity volleyball team. Roy was, in fact, a member of the 1982-3 volleyball team that won the inaugural IASAS Volleyball championship. Roy’s siblings, Wynne (1979), Vivian (1985), and Leon (1988) also attended ISB.

This past fall my wife and I traveled to many cities in the US and Europe and we were able to get together with many ISB alumni such as Jeannie Fortner in Maryland, Daniel Van Roy in Florida, Andrew Scupelli in Milan, and Vivi Bogner in Vienna, as well as my brother Leon and sisters Wynne and Vivian who graduated 1979 and 1985 respectively I also reconnected with many alumni from the 1980s including Jung Shik Kim, Min Hwan Lee, Francesco Paola, Monica Realacci, David Haeri, Hnin Hnin Pyne, Patty DeMartini, and, of course, all those in BKK including Marisa Clapp, Pongthorn Kashemsant, Suki Clapp, Sunny and Rasina Bajaj, Chris and Phil Saluja, and more. ISB certainly has so many very successful and accomplished grads! I just wanted to drop this quick note to send my best wishes to ISB on its 70th Anniversary. All the best!!



Donna Hamilton Ericson-Jacks Through the years of Army life, Donna and her family moved often, living in 10 states (some more than once), Japan, and Thailand. She went on from ISB to attend Auburn University, her dad’s alma mater. He had told her, “Donna, you can go to college anywhere you want, but if you go to Auburn, I’ll pay your way.” No further incentives were needed. Now living in North Carolina, she has had a successful career, and is looking forward to an early retirement to let her “creative talents run wild!”


I was a member of the third graduating class in 1959 along with 16 classmates. At that time, ISB was still located on the U.S. Embassy grounds in what was once used as a Japanese Officers’ Club. The entire school, 1st through 12th grades, numbered only 500, with 16 nationalities represented. I remember that ISB did not have a chemistry teacher, so one was ‘borrowed’ from Kasetsart University, Dr. Prasom. I believe that we received a college level course that year. We had a few language barriers, and it took us a long time to figure out that when Dr. Prasom said, ‘We get a bulls’ that he was actually saying ‘vegetables.’ In those days we took our lunches to school as we had no formal food service. I remember a particularly interesting sandwich. I had just tried pomelo fruit for the first time and told our cook how delicious it was. And the next day, I had a pomelo sandwich , complete with ketchup! I think I speak for all students in the 1959-60 years in saying that our favorite teacher was a woman named Gladys Lourvanij. She was an Australian, married to a Thai. She read so many English literature plays to us, using British accents (including Cockney) and she kept us thoroughly entertained. She was also a great deal of fun and a good friend to her students. Our Athletic events consisted of a girls’ volleyball team who played a Kasetsart University girls team, and a boys’ basketball team whose competitors were from Kasetsart

University, USOM, the US Embassy, JUSMAG, and local businessmen . Our class opened the original Teen Club (called TAHO, short for Teen Age Hang Out) in September 1958. We put a lot of work, sweat, and tears into this project and we were so happy to have a place to go. As well as sports, we were involved in fund raisers for helping the famous Dr. Tom Dooley whose work with children in Southeast Asia was much needed. The ISB students helped him to buy polio vaccine for his hospitals, as well as other medical supplies. Dr. Dooley was a frequent visitor to ISB and attended the 1959 graduation ceremonies. The speaker for the graduation ceremony, which was held at the Erawan Hotel, was Nai Pot Sarasin, Secretary General of SEATO. We did not have much of a physical plant for the school. All of our classrooms were open air with shutters to keep out the rain. We had no amenities or conveniences and no high tech equipment. But what we did have at ISB was a great deal of fun, a wonderful spirit of friendship that has survived more than forty years, and we even managed to get a great education as well. No other experience could equal attending ISB! I’m so thankful that I’m a part of the ISB family. Only those of us who have experienced ISB can truly understand that special link we all share.


Karen Smith Workman Karen Smith Workman, ISB class of 1986, received a B.S. in Education from Baylor University in 1990 and has taught Special Education in the United States and overseas for many years. Her overseas postings were in Asia with teaching positions in China and in Cambodia. She and her husband, Philip Workman, currently reside in Waco, Texas. The following are Karen’s memories from her time at ISB.


Every day at lunch, I would have a “Big Stick” and walk around the bookstore in the middle of the campus with my friend, Debbie. Another memory that I have is of the fire in the chemistry lab; quite frankly, we were all disappointed when the school did not close. Hosting IASAS was so much fun as we would be able to watch the games, and hang out with kids from the other international schools. I remember Mr. Miller always stood at the gate and said, “Good Morning”, to everyone who walked through the gate each morning. Also, I remember our trips to Jomtien Beach and Pattaya. The beaches were so deserted. We had to travel on dirt roads full of potholes. The main beach did get a little crazy when the navy ships came in, but when there were no exercises, it was a dead

place. I learned to windsurf there by renting the windsurf board for days, and just going out and practicing all the time. It was great! The beach was cold in November and the jellyfish came. When I was at ISB from 1976 until 1986, we had an outdoor snack bar, and I always got my lunch at school. I liked the choices we had, and we would go to different windows for the different choices. ISB held high standards for its students. An excellent selection of classes was available to students, and there was much flexibility to meet the needs of the students. A wide variety of extra-curricular activities were offered, so everyone could be involved where they had an interest. I enjoyed my time at ISB and feel that it was a very good experience in my life. Most of all, I appreciate the diversity we had and the encouragement to do our best.


attention to local salmon recovery efforts in the Salish Sea. Cindi remains an active volunteer with Stillwaters Environmental Center in Kingston, WA. Before his death in 2020, Tom served 18 years on the Kitsap County Planning Commission addressing land use issues as an environmental advocate.

Cindi Samson Nevins

Cindi Samson Nevins attended ISB from January of 1962 through June of 1964. A member of the class of 1966, she graduated from high school in Rockville, Maryland in June of ‘66. She went on to receive a BA in Government and Politics from the University of Maryland in 1970, then did a fifth year for teaching certification at California State Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo in 1972. She received her MA in Exceptional Child Education (Gifted) from the University of South Florida in 1979. After teaching grades one and two in Ridgecrest, California and teaching third grade for two years in Lenoir, North Carolina, she spent six years teaching a talented and gifted enrichment program for grades four through eight in Scappoose, Oregon.

In 1985, she returned to Thailand with her husband Tom, both teaching at ISB. After 9 years at ISB, she and her husband, Tom Nevins, went down to the south of Thailand to open a new international school, International School Eastern Seaboard. In 1998 Cindi and Tom retired to Washington state and turned their


ISB is one great memory to me ... great in the sense of ‘large.’ I first passed through its gates in January of 1962 as an eighth grader and still recall the friendly greeting I received even a very shy person. As the U.S. commitment to Vietnam and Laos built up, my friends and I did our best to create the most normal teenage life we could. Cokes, burgers at the Little Home Bakery, clothes copied out of Seventeen by local tailors, records by new groups like the Beatles and the Beach Boys brought in from Hong Kong, kept us in our teenage world. Sib’s snack bar made great french-fries, and the choir practice room was a small wooden room on the edge of the soccer field. We had the Singapore Games and a well-developed cheerleader squad. We had the Sadie Hawkins Dances (which were still going on when I returned in ‘85). I also remember the great Ides of March toga dance. The Sala was built in 1963 as a ‘temporary’ building; and it had dirt floors and a dark interior. I had Spanish there with Mrs. Breitenbach, who had also taught my sister in Manila. I left ISB as a student in June 1964. I next walked through ISB’s gate some twenty-one years later as a newly recruited teacher along with my husband Tom. Each step through the campus brought a flood of vivid images of my adolescence that took some time to subside. But my ‘greatest memory’ sends me to class photos of my nine fifth grade classes. I scan their faces and recall so many little details of our daily lives together ... I wonder where their life paths have led them? My fifth grade teaching team drifts into mind ... the team was constantly changing, always supporting, thriving on the challenges and satisfaction our kids provided as we worked so very hard together. ISB is a big memory for me. I can find every emotion there, but in the end there’s a smile and sense of home.


Reflecting back on how ISB shaped me into the person I am today, I smile as I am reminded of so many fond memories that I used to take for granted. In a world that looks unfamiliar now, it was a heartwarming experience to go back in time to see how amazing my childhood really was. ISB had given me everything I didn’t know I needed.

Rasmeet Anansongvit Sachdej Rasmeet Anansongvit Sachdej came to ISB in first grade in 1993 and graduated some twelve years later with the class of 2005. After leaving ISB she attended RMIT University in Australia where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing. Most recently Rasmeet became a Certified Life Coach at Aspire to Rise and is working for Amani Corporation. She, her husband, Parm, and her daughter and son live in Guam. This is Rasmeet’s story of her time at ISB and how it shaped her life.


My journey at ISB started as a naïve 6 year old in Mr. Lalonde’s First Grade class. I just moved from Japan in 1993 and I had no idea at that time, that I was in one of the best schools in the world. For me it was just first grade. It is something I am appreciating on another level now as my own 6 year old Daughter starts her school journey 4,777 kms away in Guam. Acceptance and appreciation of all cultures and people was one of the biggest gifts ISB has given me especially in my career as a Life Coach. Growing up in a school with over a hundred nationalities, it taught me that we are all more similar than we are different and that is our super power as a human race. It taught me how to look past color, size, and beliefs, to truly love and appreciate someone for who they are instead of where they’re from. As an adult in 2022 raising my children to be loving to all humans, I value this crucial life skill that was taught in such an effortless way. Another life changing lesson I learnt was gratitude for the chance to be an ISB alumni. ISB is a school that offers countless opportunities for growth in every aspect of our lives so that we could become successful global citizens who make an impact in the world. Alongside wonderful caring teachers that go above and beyond for their students, to state-of-the-art facilities, ISB understands the needs for balance in one’s upbringing. ISB has the gift of nurturing the individual gifts each student has. One of the biggest opportunities that I will always cherish is Week Without Walls, where I got to travel to Spain and Turkey with my classmates to learn and create memories that would last a lifetime. Spending a week painting one of the local schools, was also a truly humbling moment as well. My experience at ISB is the gift that keeps on giving as I go maneuver through the different phases of my life. From the lifelong friendships I have built, to the confidence in my own capabilities, ISB continues to help me be the best version of myself, giving me courage to carve a place for myself in this world.


Acknowledgements Thank you, ISB Alumni!! After nearly 40 years at ISB as a math teacher, coach, assistant athletic/activities director, and now the ISB alumni coordinator, this 70th anniversary project has been a true joy to put together. It seemed a herculean task to get so many ISB alumni to take time out of their busy lives to share their stories, but the response was heart-warming. So to all of you from the bottom of my heart.


Additionally, I also send special thanks to my close friend, Donna Dauenhauer, for allowing us to include some really wonderful stories that were originally included in the spectacular memory book for ISB’s 50th anniversary, A Thai Tapestry, that she coauthored along with the one and only Freda Williams. As Donna wrote, “I believe the story of ISB is a living, breathing and evolving one, and should be recorded for the future.” Indeed, Donna, ‘Once a Panther, Always a Panther!’ I would also be remiss if I did not thank the incomparable Arin Aukayanagul, the super-talented Graphic Designer working in the ISB Marketing Department. His tasteful design work made these stories take on a life of their own, and created a book that is a true work of art. I cannot tell you how lucky ISB is to have a gentleman of Arin’s caliber working on our campus. And, finally, an apology to all of my alumni friends and former students out there for giving you one last homework assignment so many years after you left ISB. I hope the end result, this beautiful tribute to ISB’s 70 years, makes that final assignment very much worth the effort! Happy 70th ISB!! Harold Albert


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