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K ent D en v er S c h o o l






Fond Memories: For decades, Kent Denver students have passed through these gates on Commencement Day and prepared to begin the next, exciting phase of their lives. Chenery Theater looks a little different here, covered in snow. Photo: J. Todd '09




Winter Perspective advisors Lesley Brophy, Miya Dickman ’94, Holly Downs ’00, Rand Harrington, Phil Klein, Sara Lawrence, Genevieve Marcelino, Suzie Todd ’73 Editors Jan Thomas ’76 Jack Todd ’09 Design & layout Andi Todaro Contributing photographers Carol MacKay Photography Rachel Greiman Jan Thomas ’76 Jack Todd ’09 Cailtlin Vickers ’17 Contributing writers Marti Champion Rand Harrington, Ph.D Claire Hutchison ’18 Lisa Mortell Sophia Rase ’18 Jan Thomas ’76 Jack Todd ’09 Cover photo: Finding Solutions. Start small and scale up. At Kent Denver that includes building excellence in scholarship and character—and building robots. Photo: Caitlin Vickers ’17

K ent D en v er S c h o o l



The incoming Middle School Division Head believes the habits formed in middle school provide the foundation for high school, college and life. Discover why she says middle school is the “center of the universe.”


Seven alumni, with careers ranging from art to philanthropy and construction to entrepreneurialism, demonstrate how a strong foundation can lead countless places.


Annual Report editors Phil Klein, Sara Lawrence

4 Tribute

Annual Report photos Unless otherwise noted, all Annual Report photos provided by Carol MacKay Photography

6 Campus News

5 From the Head of School 10 Sports Update 16 Alumni News 18 Stay in Touch


2016-17 Board of Trustees Dr. Rand Harrington, Head of School

Whenever you see one of these icons after an article, visit Kent Denver social media for enhanced content.

Kevin Duncan ’81, President Michanda Lindsey, Vice President Mary Kelly, Secretary Tom McGonagle ’77, Treasurer

Tully Bragg Mary Chao ’17, Student Rep Kathy Safford Coors ’90 Javier Del Castillo Julia Sayre Donnelly ’98, Alumni Rep

Ann Ellis Jeremy Flug K.C. Gallagher ’87 Ken Gart Lynn Haecker, Parents’ Association Rep Sunhee Hodges Jeff Howard Sarah Anschutz Hunt ’89 Lisa Love Bruce McGrath ’72 Kristin McKissick

Heather Mulvihill Caroline Kurtz Rassenfoss ’78 Lisa Robinson Keith Warner Jennifer McIntosh Waters ’88 Terry Whitney ’80 David Windfeldt ’89




“Food is our passion, service is our life, Kent Denver is our home.” - Meagan Johnson



Photo: C. MacKay


Between them, MeAgan Johnson and Bobbi Trujillo have served Kent Denver for more than 60 years, planning and preparing hearty, nutritious lunches that sustain students throughout the day. Breakfast for Lunch Day and Bobbi’s Posole are just two of the meals alumni remember fondly. These days, the Schaden Dining Hall menu includes those favorites and more, including daily gluten-free and vegan options.


From the Head of School E ns u r i n g S u ccess

This semester I have been given the opportunity to return to the classroom to teach a course on what I consider to be the most transformative ideas in the history of science: electricity and magnetism. The “action at a distance” interactions in physics are deeply mysterious and triggered in me a deep love of learning that drew me to education and teaching almost 30 years ago. It is this same love of learning that we see celebrated by Kent Denver teachers and students every day. Our exceptional teachers generate a level of energy that is so palpable that, with the right equipment, we could probably measure the spark that moves between teachers and students, students with each other and teachers with their peers, transforming all. In conversations, letters and surveys, alumni often cite these transformative experiences as the greatest gifts of their Kent Denver education. They not only received an excellent education in English, math, science, world languages, athletics and the arts—they honed their ability to learn. They discovered how they learn best, and they became strong self-advocates. These skills served them well in college, graduate school, careers and life.

of those who built, attended, supported and continually improved our extraordinary school, and we hold Kent Denver’s next 100 years in our hands. The decisions and actions we take today will determine the state of the school when Kent Denver’s stewards consider how to cheer in our bicentennial. Many plans—including the first steps toward building a new middle school—are already underway. This is just one of a number of transformative enhancements to our learning spaces that will take place over the next few years. Remember the spark I mentioned earlier? These improvements will give it greater room to move and grow. This is an exciting time! I invite you to be part of it. If you haven’t done so already, please take a few moments to update your contact information on the alumni pages of our redesigned website. I plan to join other members of Kent Denver faculty at alumni events around the country, and I hope to see you there. I look forward to hearing from you as we move forward. Please stay in touch! Warm regards,

Rand Harrington, Ph.D. Head of School

This issue of Perspective explores the myriad ways alumni leveraged the foundation their Kent Denver education provided to create meaningful lives. As they prove in the following pages, there is no prescribed path to success, but a robust education eases the journey and increases choice. The Kent Denver community will celebrate our centennial in just five years. We stand on the shoulders



Campus News

J u d y G r a ese n a m ed a Legend o f D a n c e in C o l o r a d o by Marti Champion

Pa rents o f A l u m ni : S tay C o nne c ted Alumni have the Perspective and the alumni e-newsletter. Students have the Advocate. Current Kent Denver parents and guardians have the Connection. Now, parents and guardians of alumni have their own publication for news about what’s happening at Kent Denver School!

“Parents of alumni often ask for an easy way to stay in touch with Kent Denver— and we absolutely want to stay connected with them,” says Priscilla Scobie, Associate Head of Upper School and Director of Student Life. “It’s always wonderful when alumni or their parents stop by to say hello. I love to hear what they’re up to and what’s new in their lives! For those who aren’t able to visit in person, Parents of Alumni Connection is our way of checking in twice per year and saying hi.” The first issue was sent to parents and guardians of the Class of 2016. Ms. Scobie hopes more parents of alumni join the mailing list throughout the year.


If you’re interested in receiving The Parents of Alumni Connection, please email Jan Thomas, Director of Communications, at and ask to be added the list.


Photo: T. Davis

The new e-newsletter, Parents of Alumni Connection, will publish twice per year, usually in the fall and spring.

P r o f essi o n a l D e v e l o p m ent G r a nts S u pp o rt Fa c u lt y a s Li f e l o ng Le a rners by Lisa Mortell

Kent Denver has high expectations for growth and learning by our students, and our faculty share that growth mindset in their own professional lives. Thanks to a mosaic of professional development opportunities, including oncampus options like Professional Learning Communities, Curriculum Grants and Teacher Intensives, as well as a generous budget for off-campus training, our teachers can keep learning and evolving throughout their Kent Denver careers. At least 45 faculty members have applied for and received funding for off-campus learning opportunities this year. These grants cover everything from tuition for pursuing advanced degrees to fees for AP instructional seminars and travel and registration expenses for conferences across the nation. Supporting faculty in their professional growth ensures that Kent Denver’s teachers are always on the cutting edge of their fields and that students benefit from the best ideas and practices from around the world. cont. on pg. 8

G e o B a seb a l l Li v es On ! Continuing a much-loved Kent Denver tradition, members of the Class of 2017 met up with current sixth-graders for a spirited round of GeoBaseball before school in November. GeoBaseball is a trivia competition that rewards teamwork and the mastery of world geography. The Class of 2023 continued the sixth grade’s history of domination over their older opponents, soundly defeating the seniors in one game and gutting out a one-run win in the second match of the morning.


On October 16, 2016, our very own Judy Graese, Kent Denver School’s costumer extraordinaire, was honored by the Carson Brierly Giffin Dance Library as a “Legend of Dance in Colorado.” The Carson Brierly Giffin Dance Library is an endowed collection dedicated to documentation and representation of the entire spectrum of dance, with an emphasis on Colorado and the American West. In an extensive interview shared with the audience, Judy shared her experiences in theater and dance in Colorado. She was described as a “Renaissance woman” who was highly coveted for not only her talent as an actress and dancer, but also as a costumer. She has an eye that is the envy of all who have seen her work (all of it) on stage. We are so lucky to have her at Kent Denver School, and it was a treat to see her honored in this way.

Middle School Director John Kuntz was delighted that the seniors, most of whom attended Kent Denver’s sixth grade, returned to enthusiastically participate in GeoBaseball. “What fun to see the seniors back in their old classrooms. They were quick to reminisce about GeoBaseball teams from their sixth-grade year: the Neon Ninjas, the Sour Skittles, the Random Polka Dots and the eventual-champion Rainbow Unicorns,” Kuntz says. “More importantly, they brought a sense of fun, camaraderie and an ease with the sixth-graders that all spoke to how they have grown and developed. Seeing sixthgraders next to seniors reminded us all of the transformation that occurs at Kent Denver. All in all, a terrific morning!”


W h at ’ s N ew at K D S ? C h e c k O u t t h e W ebsite How would you describe Kent Denver to someone who’s never visited the school? Would you focus on a favorite class? A beloved teacher? The reservoirs? The march to the Dining Hall? When Kent Denver unveiled a new website in late December, the goal was to provide a digital portal that offered potential visitors a glimpse at all of these things. With that in mind, the new site includes multiple slideshows, almost a dozen videos, more than 100 photos and a virtual arts gallery, in addition to text that describes the school, students, faculty and campus to prospective families. “The website also has a redesigned Parent Portal so our parents and guardians can find the information they need quickly and easily,” says Lisa Mortell, Parent Communications and Website Editor. “Some information, such as the new College Counseling Handbook or itineraries and other plans for upcoming international trips, is available only to our parents and is protected behind the Parent Portal firewall.” As a recent alumnus, Jack Todd ’09, Kent Denver’s Assistant Director of Communications, was excited to collaborate with Alumni Programs Director Holly Downs ’00 on building an alumni section that celebrated the lives of Kent Denver graduates. “We wanted to make it very easy for alumni to stay connected with Kent Denver,” Todd says. “The alumni pages include biographies of Distinguished Alumni award recipients, forms to nominate fellow alumni for the award and even online forms to update contact information.” “Another goal was to make it even more convenient to discover ways to participate in volunteer opportunities and to find information about upcoming events—like the 2017 Alumni Weekend on June 9-10,” Downs adds. Traffic to the website has surged in recent weeks as almost 7,000 new and returning visitors have toured since December. “The best thing about the new website is that it was created by the entire community,” says Jan Thomas ’76, Director of Communications. “Alumni, parents and guardians, the Kent Denver Parents’ Association, faculty, staff and students all shared their thoughts on what should be included. Even prospective students and families offered opinions on what would make the website more useful to them. So if you haven’t visited the website yet, please take a tour! We’d love to hear your thoughts.”

Alumni have their own section here. No login required!

MyKDS is a gateway to the Parent and Faculty Portals.

Your support matters! Connect to Kent Denver's giving pages here and learn how your generosity impacts students' lives every day.

This slideshow is now interactive! Click the boxed text to visit more exciting website content.

Look for news, updates and articles 2-3 times per month.

Get a glimpse of overall statistics and what makes Kent Denver special.

Ta ke a S u m m er C l a ss at K D S ! Are you already thinking about what to do this summer? Then we have good news. Kent Denver Summer Session 2017 is right around the corner! This summer features an allnew slate of camps for your future (or current!) Sun Devil, as well as some fun and engaging workshops for adults.

Photo: J. Todd

Find out more at www. summersession

Photos: J. Todd

Summer Session camps run weekly from June 12-August 11.




Professional Development cont. from pg. 6

B a bies , B a bies , B a bies Kent Denver welcomed a host of new Sun Devils since the last issue of Perspective was published. Director of Middle School Admission, Miya Dickman ’94, and her husband, Josh, celebrated the arrival of their third daughter, Masachika, on Sept. 29, 2016.

Sarah Dutcher, Breakthrough Kent Denver’s Executive Director, and her husband, Matt, welcomed twins, Madeleine and Max, on Nov. 9, 2016.

Bradley Evan Rubin, son of Speech and Debate Coach Terry Rubin and his wife, Ilana, made a very early, surprise arrival. Born on Dec. 14, 2016 while Ilana was on a business trip in New York City, Bradley weighed in at 2 lbs, 11 oz and had added nearly a pound of weight by Jan. 5, 2017. The Rubins hope to bring Bradley back to Colorado in early March. We all look forward to welcoming them home! French teacher Allison Cain and her husband, Patrick, welcomed their first child, Henry O’Brien Cain, on Jan. 6, 2017. They say, “We didn’t know it was possible to love someone so much.”

“Many candidates tell us that our investments in faculty professional development are a key reason they choose Kent Denver,” says Upper School Division Head Eric Chandler. “We seek teachers who never want to stop growing and we support that growth through our multifaceted professional learning program. Not every school is willing or able to do that.” Thanks to the outstanding reputation of Kent Denver’s teachers and innovative programs, our faculty are also in high demand as presenters at professional development conferences across the nation. Recent examples include:

Michael Ehrenfried delivered a presentation entitled “Leveraging Online Spaces to Improve Metacognition.” at the Lovett Learning Institute.

Scott Yates presented at the American Football Coaches Association conference in Nashville in January 2017.

Annick Chen was a STARTALK Program Instructor on Chinese Instruction in the Digital Age at CU Boulder over the summer. She also facilitated workshops for Denver Public Schools and the Poudre School District and presented at the Colorado Department of Education, Colorado Congress of Foreign Language Teachers, and Colorado Chinese Language Teachers Consortium.

John Kuntz led a session at the Association of Middle Level Educators annual conference in Austin, TX. His presentation “considered a framework for considering the structure of middle schools: what we teach, how we teach, and how we create systems to support kids.”

James Covi helped lead a session on AP History teaching practices at the World History Association conference in Ghent, Belgium.

Marti Champion was a facilitator for the CIRCLE Conference’s “New to Inclusiveness Work Circle,” helping educators “engage in dialogue with others beginning to explore courageous conversations.”

Audrey Imhoff, Graham Reid and Michael Ehrenfried from the IIT team presented on the topic “Information Technology, Libraries, and Ed Tech: Fight, Coexist, or Thrive?” at the Association of Technology Leaders in Independent Schools (ATLIS) conference in April.

Jason Mundy, Taylor Pringle and Marti Champion trained high school students to present workshops to middle-schoolers as part of the STAMP Diversity Conference in October. 8



Meet Carrie Green Photo Courtesy C. Green

By Jan Thomas '76

On July 1, Carrie Green will assume the role of Middle School Division Head. She succeeds John Kuntz, who will depart after 27 years of exemplary service to Kent Denver.

audits and outcomes for history, math and English, to running faculty meetings and implementing a 1:1 Chromebook program, I learned something new each and every day.”

Ms. Green is currently the Assistant Head of Middle School at St. John's School in Houston, TX. Her responsibilities include supporting the Head of Middle School in managing the daily operations and overseeing middle school faculty observations and professional development.

Kent Denver conducted an extensive national search for the new Middle School Division Head, and Head of School Rand Harrington is delighted with the results.

She began her teaching career at her alma mater, Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles, after earning a B.A. in English and Film Studies from Columbia University. While at Harvard-Westlake, she ran the middle school dance program, participated in the admission process, was a member of the ninth-grade advisory program team, chaired the Green Committee, worked with student council, and was an integral member of the ninthgrade outdoor education program. Following a decade of service there, Ms. Green earned an M.A. in Policy, Organization and Leadership Studies at Stanford University and then joined St. John’s School as Dean of Students. Six months into her tenure, she was asked to serve as Interim Head of Middle School for the 2015-­2016 year. “My term as Interim Head of Middle School was an incredible training ground,” Ms. Green says. “I approached the 2015-­2016 school year as the ultimate laboratory experience and was exposed to every facet of what it means to be a Division Head. From implementing a new schedule design, to managing subject

“Ms. Green's understanding and love of middle school students, combined with her impressive success as an educational leader and commitment to our core values made her our top choice,” Dr. Harrington says. “The search committee, the board of trustees and I all look forward to her first day as a member of our community.” Perspective editors recently spoke with Ms. Green about her new role: Perspective: What excites you most about joining Kent Denver? CG: I found Kent Denver to be an incredible community—one that is grounded in history, yet forwardthinking as it considers its next chapter. Kent Denver’s values are more than just words. They are a practice. Kent Denver is Integrity, Respect, Personal Growth, Community and Wisdom. I’m humbled and honored to join such a special place. Perspective: You devoted your career to middle school education. What appeals to you most about students of that age? CG: Middle-schoolers are simply my favorite! I've always been drawn to these students because middle school is such an exciting time filled with transitions and incredible growth. During these precious years, students begin to take full ownership of their learning, discover what inspires them and establish an awareness

beyond themselves. Perspective: You met with faculty and parents during the interview process. What were your impressions? CG: As a former middle school teacher, I’ve experienced the tight bond that can emerge among faculty and I saw that same care and commitment from the faculty at KDS. It was clear that middle school faculty here support one another. They cherish their relationships with their students and with each other. They delight in seeing their students engaged and challenged. They don't shy away from the developmental challenges of middleschoolers, and they revel in their students’ accomplishments. Meeting the Kent Denver parents was one of my favorite parts of my interview experience. It was so abundantly clear that the parents not only care, but they are deeply committed to supporting an environment where their children can develop the life skills to become successful and empathetic adults. Perspective: Kent Denver Middle School is the foundation of our 6-12 program. Based on your experience, what have you observed about the importance of a strong middle school experience? CG: For me, middle school is the center of the universe. The habits of mind that are formed in middle school become the foundation for success not only in high school and college, but in life. Learning effective time-management, self-advocacy and empathy is as important as learning Math and English. These skills foster a sense of empowerment and confidence in young people that enable them to accomplish great things.



Photos: C. MacKay


Spring Sports Recap by Lisa Mortell

After coming up short in the state semi-finals for three straight years, the Kent Denver girls’ soccer team and their core of senior leaders came into the 2016 season battle-tested and ready to win. And win they did, outscoring opponents by a 69-9 margin on their way to a 16-1-1 record. During the playoffs, the Sun Devils’ defense, led by goalkeeper Oakley Wurzweiler ’16, conceded only three goals against the state’s top teams. The Devils’ final victory, a 3-1 win over Colorado Academy in the championship game, included an early score by Emma Billings ’18, a pair of goals by Sage DiGiulio ’17 and outstanding team play all around. “I am so proud of our team and so appreciative of our eight seniors who dedicated themselves to making their team a cohesive and solid unit,” said Coach Krista Pearman. “This state championship is a wonderful symbol of what can be achieved if you work together, support each other and have a mentality that nobody is going to beat you if you give it your all.”

For more updates and photos from the spring sports seasons—including girls’ tennis, track and field, girls’ golf, boys and girls’ lacrosse and baseball—visit www.kentdenver. org/athletics

With a total of five 3A titles, Kent Denver is now tied for the most state championships in Colorado girls’ soccer.



K ent D E N V E R S CHOOL C o a c h es Reach L a nd m a rks Photo: W. Ayesh

G ir l s S ta rt N ew Era for Sun D e v i l s S o c c er

Several long-serving Kent Denver coaches reached significant career milestones this year. • In boys’ golf, coach Bob Austin and the Sun Devils won a record ninth state championship, surpassing a record held by Austin’s Cherry Creek coach from the 1970s. • In her 20 years as Kent Denver’s field hockey coach, Kathy James has collected more wins than any coach in state history. The Sun Devils won their tenth state title in 2016, also a Colorado record. • Randy Ross coached his boys’ tennis team to a fourthstraight 4A state title in 2016. Kent Denver has won eight team titles and numerous individual championships over Ross’s long career at the school. • Scott Yates reached 315 career wins in 2016, tying for the most wins ever by a football coach in Colorado. His team finished as state runnersup in 2016 and will be strong contenders in 2017.

A Fall Season for the Books by Sophia Rase ’18 and Claire Hutchison ‘18

Kent Denver athletics made history this fall: the Devils took home state trophies in boys’ golf, boys’ tennis, girls’ field hockey and boys’ soccer. The winning streak started in October when the boys’ golf team won state, and Oliver Jack ’18 won the individual state title. As always, when Kent Denver students bring back a gold trophy, excitement swept the school. A few weekends later, the boys’ tennis team traveled to Pueblo for their state tournament. The Sun Devils made history as they took home the state title for the fourthconsecutive year, beating secondplace Colorado Academy by 27 points. Not only did the team win a title, but number one singles through three doubles won individual state titles as well. “It was cool to win four state titles in a row,” said captain and fourtime state champion Casey Ross ’17. “It was so fun winning it four times with Niko [Hereford ’17].” As the end of October approached, Kent Denver field hockey players went head-to-head against Palmer Ridge in the state finals and won 2-0. The players were overjoyed, and at the end of the game, excited Kent

Denver fans stormed the field in celebration. “Winning state was the most amazing feeling,” said Emma Domich ’18. “It was the climax of all of the hard work we put in this season, and having four teams win state, making Kent history, creates such a supportive and exciting athletic culture that builds community!” While the school celebrated the three victories, two teams were still on the road to compete for their gold. Boys’ soccer was the next to take the field at a championship game against Jefferson Academy. Tensions were high as both teams fought hard, leaving the score 2-2 at the end of the second half and sending the game into a heated shootout. After several amazing shots and two saves by goalkeeper Ross Rainaldi ’17, Mason Saeed ’17 scored the winning goal. This victory was the team’s 59th consecutive win for their thirdstraight state title. Football was the final team fighting for a state championship. Over Thanksgiving break the boys travelled to the 2A state finals in La Junta to compete in another nail-biting game. Dedicated fans who drove three hours to see the game cheered on their Sun Devils, but the boys ultimately fell to the Tigers 17-10.

Photos: C. MacKay



What a C la s s ! The Class of 2016 entered the world prepared to change it for the better. Maintaining Kent Denver’s proud tradition of 100% college acceptance, our youngest alumni matriculated at 70 colleges and universities in 28 American states, as well as one university in France. Here are memories of the day we bid farewell to the Class of 2016.



Graduates, (don’t you like the sound of that word? “Graduates”—it sounds so distinguished!) find time today to thank all these people. They believed in you! They are here for you now! They are so, so happy (and maybe even a little teary) to see you walk up here to receive your diploma… I’m sure you asked me, a history teacher, to speak because you wanted a commencement speech with a strong, clear thesis statement. So here it is: Time matters… So many moments of history that we hold dear came through focused attention. We celebrate the signing of the Constitution, but what really counted were the minutes leading up to it. Time gave people the ability to create, to think outside the box, to fail—and try again— to work together, and to experience happiness about their accomplishments… You are going to be amazed at how much time you have in college. Some of you won’t even have class on Tuesdays! What are you going to do with that time? How do you make time in college matter? All right, here’s where I give you some advice: • First, take a few classes simply because you’re curious. Pick classes that make your brain tick. Pick classes that stretch you. • Second, find time for yourself— exercise, get your heart rate up, run long trails, hold a yoga pose, practice slap shots from the blue line, or just sit, and let your mind wander. • Find time to create a relationship with an adult—find a coach, teacher, job supervisor that you respect. You told us that making connections with teachers was what was most important to you in your years here. You know how to do this! • Take time in nature—watch your dog swim in the lake. Climb a small mountain. See the baby geese walking by (Admit it, three of you stopped to take pictures of those goslings this spring! Take fewer selfies and more pictures of baby geese!) • Value reading—choose a book just for yourself. Let your brain regenerate by immersing it in another world. Be there,


three together, building Lego castles, airplanes, Death Star destructors, whatever. They were talking, laughing, focused. The joy was in the creation—the decision of where the pieces should go, how they matched up. The joy was even in the messing up, going back to the directions, starting all over again, figuring it out. The joy was in the process. And of course, “Lego” in Danish means, “Play Well.” That’s what they were doing. SO, Class of 2016, play well. Give yourself time to create. Repeat things. Make mistakes. Build a community wherever you go. And thank you graduates. Thank you for being you. Thank you for being the curious, quirky, witty (oh, you do make me laugh!), real, good people that you are. If you promise to slow down your time, I promise to slow down mine. Until then, use that technology to keep in touch. I might even send you a selfie. And I’ll certainly make time for you, when you come back to visit—please do. We will all miss you. Excerpt from the Commencement Address to the Class of 2016* Delivered by: Ginna Halverson Chair-Kent Denver History department and History teacher June 7, 2016 * Edited for space. Contact Ms. Halverson for a copy of the full speech.

Photos: J. Francois

on the page, with the characters, in the scene. Reading takes time; it’s always worth it. • Make time for your friends. Your friends are important. They make you laugh harder than anyone else. They point out your blind spots; they challenge you. And make new friends, continually—you’re missing out if you don’t. Make time for the people with whom you share a community—start today, and talk to all of your classmates in the next week, even if you never thought you were friends at Kent Denver. You are the select members of the Class of 2016! • Take extra time with your family this summer. Cook dinner for your parents; stay at the table just a minute longer than you might have. Express your fears about college. Hear their fears about you leaving. Don’t lose any time this summer! Take it, grab it, live it, be in it. It’s all real. It’s all good. Tell them you love them. Make the time. • Finally—and do this today, tomorrow, this week—don’t wait. Spend a little time thinking about the moments on this beautiful campus when time slowed down for you—because we saw those moments! Many of you—all of you—found happiness here, when you slowed down to think, to create, to listen, to laugh, to let another person into your orbit—when you loved just a little more than you did the moment before. Of course, as every parent out there knows, I’ve learned the most important lessons about using time from my own kids. Some of their best days have been when they were all



Dear Class of 2020,

you have been a witness to so much change in your lives for the past three years: You went square dancing in a cabin in Buena Vista; you jumped in hot springs on the way home from the sixth grade trip; you competed fiercely in games of geobaseball; with your high-pitched voices, you chanted CHIPS AND DIP with great enthusiasm as they battled it out for victory; you survived Mr. Wittmer's caustic remarks; you studied and learned what caustic means; you forgot the meaning of caustic after taking the vocab quiz; you shaved Mr. Wittmer's hair… As seventh and eighth graders you dressed your teachers in ridiculous outfits near Jefferson Lake; you competed on sports teams and fumbled through using a laptop to do your homework; you made iMovies in classes; you participated in trips to Mongolia, Quebec, Florida, and the Caribbean; you survived middle school dances; you cheered each other on in musicals and plays; you dealt with the rambunctious Jingles advisory as we cheered, “WE'RE NOT LAST;” you expressed your passion through fierce debate competitions; you expanded your capacity to speak different languages, to write critically, to do math equations that Mr. Jackson still can't solve; and you never stopped begging to go to lunch five minutes early. You formed new friendships and you learned the hard lessons of watching old ones fade; you learned things about yourself and you persevered through challenging times… One of my favorite authors, Pedro Arrupe, once wrote a poem that reads: What you are in love with,
what seizes your imagination,
will affect everything.
It will decide
what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you do with your evenings,
how you spend your weekends,
what you read,
whom you know,
what breaks your heart,
and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love,
and it will decide everything. I think what Pedro Arrupe urges us to do is to lead lives that are guided by love. For you, I think this means using love as a lens for making decisions in your life. The next four years offer you a marvelous opportunity to use love as a compass for your actions. You must choose courses that fuel your academic passions. You must invest in sports, arts,



Photos: C. MacKay


and activities that bring you a great deal of joy, the same joy that makes you wake up and sing, “one love, one heart, let's get together and feel alright.” You must find the thing that wakes you up in the mornings. You must invest in groups of people who love you for who you are. And you must take on the responsibility of showing love to others—caring for your classmates and living a life of inclusivity. When you live a life that is based in love, you live a life that is authentic and real. Authenticity will speak louder than anything else in your life. It will overpower any disingenuous attempts to pile on accomplishments and superficial successes. Achievement will never define you, and this is hard to remember in a culture that always pushes for more. I beg you—love yourself, be yourself, and the most important people in life will notice. My friends, you are going to have experiences in high school that blow you away. You will meet new people, discover new interests, and learn new things about yourselves. But I’m realistic enough to know that you will also face pressures that make it easy to forget that you are loved already as you are. You will face challenges and you will want to achieve more, more, and more. You will have your hearts broken. You will question yourselves. You will experience self-doubt, and sometimes you'll wonder if you are good enough for this or smart enough for that. But if there is one thing that I could ever teach you, and if there's one thing that you must never forget, then it is this: you are more than enough, and you are loved. As you stare out into this audience, as you stare into the face of love, remember this very moment. You have accomplished much. You have changed their lives. You have made me a better man. You are more than enough. And you are loved… May you let love get you out of bed in the morning and sustain you in the toughest of moments. May you pursue passions and relationships in high school that bring out your true self. May love change your lives like you changed mine. May love call forth the genuine and true self that resides within you, as you all have called such things in me. Congratulations to you, class of 2020. I love you very much. Excerpt from the Continuation Address to the Class of 2020 * Delivered by: Bradley Jackson History teacher, Dean-Class of 2020 June 6, 2016 * Edited for space. Contact Mr. Jackson for a copy of the full speech.

S a l u t , R i s i ng N i nth - Gra ders! The 74 members of the Class of 2020 departed Middle School on June 6. Included in their ranks were 67 students who have been at Kent Denver since sixth grade. Each student left an indelible mark on their teachers, the friends, the campus and the school overall.




Class Notes ’30s

Sylvia McLaughlin ’34 died on January 19, 2016 at the age of 99. She was the co-founder of Save the Bay.


Kay Waldner Lucas ’57 is living in the state of Washington. She attended Kent School for Girls from 4th-8th grade and would love to catch up with classmates and hopes they are all well.


Shelley Hartley ’69 reports that she is retired and living happily in the Central Coast of California. Carol Golden Ashley ’69 writes, "Happily retired, and love having our children and five grandchildren live in neighboring communities."


Teresa Connors Johnson ’70 moved to Hilton Head Island in 2015, where she works in hospice care. She remains in touch with Annie Grant Lowdermilk. Her son, Sam, Class of 2001, is back in Denver after living in New York City for nine years.


Elaine Russell Coombe ’81 writes, "I still live in the Denver area with my wonderful husband, Eric. My kids are in college and we are enjoying a quieter house. I continue to be a Track Mom with my daughter running hurdles at Drake University. I now work at Black & Veatch as a Civil Engineer. Life is Good!" Chip Usher ’85 graduated from the National War College at Ft. McNair, Washington D.C. in June 2014 with a Masters in National Security Strategy. Chip married Adrienne Hallett in June of 2015 in Alexandria, VA.


Kate Collins ’97 writes, "I've been living in Florence, Italy since 2001 after graduating from Middlebury college. I work for wellknown contemporary photographer Massimo Vitali, and also have a small business doing custom trip planning for Italy with a focus on Tuscany." Peter Eklund ’97 and his wife, Cathryn, welcomed a third boy to the family, Elias (Eli) Griggs Eklund on May 2, 2016. Older brothers Garrett and Anders were excited to welcome him to the family.

Lynn Paxson ’76 (per Jane Kano M.D. ’75 ) Lynn was named a full professor at Iowa State University. Additionally, she received national recognition from the Environmental Design Research Association.



Photo courtesy P. Eklund '97

Meg McDonald ’76 has moved to Santa Fe from the Boston area.

Ben Steinberg ’98 writes, "After 14 years of post-college medical training, I've taken a faculty position in clinical cardiac electrophysiology at the University of Utah. My wife Laura and I are thrilled to get back 'home' to the

mountains and introduce our kids, Ali and Andy, to all the West has to offer!" Anson Eeds ’99 passed away in January 2013.


Hope Stafford ’01 has made an exciting career change. After 11 years of personal training, she has now become a realtor. Hope has been with Keller Williams Realty DTC since February of 2016. Emily Goodyear Forgett ’01 and her husband, Kevin, recently moved back to Denver after spending 10 years in Boston, where they met. They have a 2.5-year-old, Ryan, and identical twin girls, Annie and Caroline, born in April 2016. Emily is still working on making Kevin a Broncos fan. Ashley Weakland Hirsh ’01 and her husband, Craig Hirsh, welcomed a son, Charlie Philip Hirsh, to their family on March 10, 2016. Sam Johnson ’01 helped plan Teach for America’s 25th Anniversary Summit in Washington D.C. before leaving the organization to explore Argentina and Chile during the summer of 2016. He is now studying front-end development at Turing School of Software and Design in Denver and recently became engaged to fiancé, Sarah Waddell. Alex Ridder ’01 is raising money for youth charities throughout the globe by training for a triathlon sponsored by the ADECCO group Win4youth and is working on his purple belt in the Fujian White Crane Karate Studio. David Seligman ’01 moved back to Denver and is an attorney at Towards Justice and a contributing author for the National Consumer Law Center. He and his wife, Izzie Stone, welcomed their second daughter, Miriam Elena


Kristen Foster Cooley ’02 married Andrew Cooley on July 23, 2016 in Steamboat Springs, CO. Trevor Brown ’96 was the photographer.

Leah Garvin ’05 is living in Santa Fe, NM working as a doula and a figurative sculptor. Alexander Langhorne ’05 writes,"I currently work at Freddie Mac in Enterprise Risk Management in the Washington, D.C. area."

Paul Franz ’04 is living in Huntington Beach, CA and is working as a language arts teacher and doing some consulting.

Tim Hoffman ’06 celebrated his wedding June 25, 2016 in Charlottesville, VA, with his wife Mallory and 11 Kent Denver alums.

Photo courtesy T. Hoffman '06

Photo courtesy K. Foster Cooley '02

Allison Harris ’06 is at CU working on her Ph.D. in chemistry.

Back Row: Lucy Chused Stookesberry ’02, Courtney Heller ’02, Lindsay Kurtz Haworth ’02, Natalie Gart ’02, Annie Rapson ’02, Kellie Shopneck ’02, Chelsea Dezen Rasis ’02, Ashley Schmidt ’02. Front Row: Megan O’Shaughnessy Crawford ’02, Kristen Foster Cooley ’02.

Ali Bathgate ’08 married David Hild on September 3, 2016 in Vail, Colorado.

Photos courtesy A. Bathgate Hild '08

Photo courtesy C. Dezen Rasis '02

Chelsea Dezen Rasis ’02 had her first baby, Lev Arthur Rasis, on March 19, 2016. She and her husband, Ron, are having a blast with their sweet baby boy.

Margot Duke Simpson ’04 and her husband Will welcomed Madeliene (Maddie) Marguerite Simpson on February 14, 2016 at 3 pounds 9 oz (7 weeks premature!) and 17 inches.

Photo courtesy M. Duke Simpson '04

Stone Seligman, to their family on September 7, 2016. He and his growing family are excited for lots of snow at their ski condo in Vail this winter.

Left to Right - TJ Slattery ’06, Andrew Elliman ’06, Rob Key ’06, Josh Reichert ’06, Tim Hoffman ’06, Matt Kelsic ’06, Drew Warkentin ’06, Mason Stabler ’06, Eric Sipf ’06, Martin Erzinger ’06, Peter Bauman ’06

Back Row: Jesse Nichols ’03, Jon Bathgate ’03, David O’Neill ’07, Graham Ely ’07, Patrick Murray ’09, Tyler Morton '07, Eric Chapman ’02, Andrew Pritzlaff ’08, Jared McDonald ’08, Luke Cunningham ’07. Second Row: Marc Bathgate ’01, Margot Duke Simpson ’03, Madison Knudsen ’07, Shannon Cudahy Ely ’07, Kathleen Hickey Murray ’09, Keeler Rebhun ’08, Elizabeth Steeler ’08, Sarah Ammons ’08. Third Row: Elizabeth Schovee MacFarlane ’07, Kyle Perlmutter ’08, Haley Sorensen ’08, Heather Karpas ’08, Hayden Cullen ’08, Annie Stookesberry ’08, Alex Allsup ’08, Kara Lorenzen ’07, Erin McGonagle ’08. Front Row: David Hild, Ali Bathgate Hild ’08.

James Franz ’06 is working at Chartbeat in NYC! Kyle Lewis ’07 and Aly Lamb Lewis ’07 are living in London. Erik Madison ’07 passed away on November 8, 2016.

Did we miss you? If so, contact Alumni Programs Director Holly Downs ’00 at and share the good news!




Alex Bankoff ’08 is living in San Francisco. Annie Blay ’08 is working for Group14 Engineering in Denver, CO. She was married in September 2015. Kathleen Hickey ’09 and Patrick Murray ’09 tied the knot on October 15, 2016 at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs. The two moved to the Washington Park area in Denver over summer 2016.


Karen Chavez ’11 graduated from New York University with a Bachelor's in Applied Psychology and just recently became a College Counselor for KIPP Denver Collegiate High School. Sawyer Petre ’12 writes, "I am a recent graduate of the University of Puget Sound with a major in Exercise Science and a minor in business. I have recently moved back to Denver."

Photo courtesy I. Navarro '16

Ian Navarro ’16 made it through basic at USMA West Point (Fall 2016) with flying colors!


A gift in your will or trust is an easy way to support Kent Denver A gift to us in your will or living trust, called a charitable bequest, is a simple way to make a big difference in the lives of Kent Denver students. Bequests are: SIMPLE Just a few sentences in your will or trust is all that is needed. We can give you the correct wording to use. FLEXIBLE Because you are not actually making a gift until after your lifetime, you can change your mind at any time. VERSATILE You can structure your bequest to leave a specific item or amount of money, make the gift contingent upon certain events or leave a percentage of your estate to the school.

Photos courtesy P. Murray '09

Top Row: James Kreidle ’09, Nick Clark ’09, Chris Hoffman ’09, Matt Schovee ’08, Dave Key ’09, Parker Sperry ’09. Middle Row: Sarah Ammons ’08, Willy Strazza ’09, Patrick Murray ’09, Kathleen Hickey ’09, Grace Duboc ’09, Erin Wattles, Lizzy Clark ’09, Max Maulitz ’09. Front Row: Haley Sorensen ’08, Haley Mirr ’09, Nicole Rakowich ’09.

Your gift—­large or small—helps us sustain our mission of delivering excellence in scholarship and character for future generations of Kent Denver students. Thank You! For more information, please contact Phil Klein, Director of Development or 303-770-7660 x526




Alumni Weekend 2016 Alumni Weekend 2016 was a huge success! Held June 10-11, we celebrated classes ending in 1 and 6, with huge turnouts from the class of 1996, as well as the Kent School for Girls and Denver Country Day classes of 1966, celebrating their 50th reunions!

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C O MM O N GR OU N D: Seven Alumni, Seven Stories, One Foundation ter y

By Jack Todd ’09





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Each year, Kent Denver proudly sends graduates into the world prepared for what’s ahead. Our alumni go on to do and accomplish numerous feats, into myriad fields and with big aspirations. The seven alumni featured here are a small sampling, but—with careers ranging from art to philanthropy, construction to entrepreneurialism—they demonstrate how a strong foundation can lead countless places.



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“It’s funny, there are two things I really remember about

my time at Kent Denver, and one is the art department,” says Calvin Seibert ’77, who transferred from the Vail Mountain School before his junior year. “Those people became my community, even though it was really hard to shift high schools at that age. I took every arts class I was allowed to.” Seibert honed his artistic foundation in Annie Merry’s art classes and, after graduating from Kent Denver, he moved to New York City to attend the School of Visual Arts, where he studied sculpture. Since then, he has worked on foundations of his own in a particular and unusual




“...I see the building as a

“I make anywhere from 50-70 sand castles a summer. I’ve been making quite a lot in the last five years,” he says. “I actually started building them in Vail. On the weekends as a kid I would build little castles in construction sites, but I didn’t really devote much time to it until I moved to New York and was close to an actual beach.” Seibert’s castles are unlike any others. Using his training in sculpture and drawing inspiration from Brutalist architects like Marcel Breuer and Paul Rudolph, Seibert builds temporary works of art in the sand. “I’ve always enjoyed architecture. When I was young I thought I would be an architect. But I’ve realized it was never really architecture I was interested in, but sculpture. Architecture is about making spaces that work. I’m more interested in objects, so my interest in architecture has always been a sculptural one. I look at the outside of a building and I see the building as a sculpture, not as a workable set of interiors and spaces.” Seibert will spend as much time as he has on any given castle, and he builds them all over the country. If he can spend all day on one sandcastle, he will; if he only has a few hours, that’s how much time he’ll spend; if he returns the next morning and yesterday’s castle is still standing, he’ll keep working on it. “I always finish them in a way. I know they’re done when they look like a completed object. It becomes a rush sometimes because I’ve got a train to catch, or the tide is coming or the light is fading. There’s always an environmental deadline that determines it all,” he says. Seibert credits Annie Merry for helping him look at objects in different ways, and for emphasizing weight, scale and relationships when it comes to objects. “I used to make things where everything was the exact same size. It was very repetitive, and Annie would say, ‘why don’t you make this smaller or this larger, and



that will create contrast.’ When I’m confronted with a problem now, trying a different approach helps me; making something larger or smaller,” says Seibert. He also notes the impact digital photography has had on his work. Before he was able to easily record and look at his own work, his sand castles existed solely in his memory. Now, Seibert will take inspiration from his own work while trying to further push sculptural boundaries he had worked on previously. Digital photography has also made his work more accessible to others. His flickr account, at press time, has nearly one million views, and the extra publicity has gotten Seibert jobs around the world, including in France and Mexico. While many artists might shudder at the idea of art as temporary as sand castles, Seibert embraces it. “I’ve made a lot of art in my life, but I don’t keep much of it. Eventually, if it gets in the way, I could either rent storage or I could just throw it out, and I tend to throw it out,” he says. “With the sand castles, I make one and then say, ‘okay, that was great, tomorrow I’ll make a different one.’ For me, it’s more about making things than about collecting things I’ve made and then showing them. I’m not trying to please anybody, I just make what I want to make.”

Photo Courtesy C. Seibert




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“Construction is what I grew up doing and it kind of fit. My brothers and I had all worked for my dad at various times and we just kind of stuck together. It’s been great,” says Benes. Since working at CMC Group, Benes and his team have been involved in numerous projects at Kent Denver, building the foundations on which our students learn. Benes and CMC Group have built several Kent Denver projects, including the Schaden Dining Hall, DeSo Field, the Duncan Center, the Student Center for the Arts and much more. Benes is also the father of a Kent Denver senior, Lyndsey. As a parent, he sees the same things at Kent Denver today that he saw as a student in the 1980s. “The teaching that’s gone on for decades, and the values and the integrity that’s instilled on all the kids, I think that’s why we’re back here,” says Benes. “We learned a lot, and the teachers did a good job for us. Their commitment to the school is amazing.” “Every time I drive on to campus it feels like it is a safe and exciting place to be; it’s secure and it makes you feel confident,” he continues. “You come out here and you just feel good. I’ve felt that for the last 35 years. Every time I drive in I feel the same thing, and that’s pretty amazing.”

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Benes thinks athletics have been an important part of his daughter’s education as well. Lyndsey, who transferred to Kent Denver from Graland in the ninth grade, was welcomed to the Kent Denver community by the crosscountry team during the pre-season program. It’s there she made her first Kent Denver friends, and Benes believes that it was an important first step in her experience. oto

After attending the University of New Hampshire and working in the Department of the Treasury for the first Bush administration, Benes moved back to Colorado to work for his father’s construction company, CMC Group.

of Kent Denver: athletics are a big part of the school, and everybody can play,” says Benes. “You can’t just study, you’ve got to be more well-rounded, and I’ve always thought athletics are a great way to do that.”


While Seibert has been creating foundations out of sand, Craig Benes ’85 has spent his post-Kent Denver years building foundations from concrete across Colorado.

Benes thinks education should be more than just reading and testing, and he thinks Kent Denver gave him that, and has offered it to his daughter as well. “I hope Lyndsey takes the values that the school instills— the integrity—with her. I hope she leaves wanting to always be a good citizen,” he says. “She’s got a great educational foundation, which will be amazing for her, but if she can take the school’s values with her as well, she’s going to be successful.”

“It makes you feel confident...I've felt that for the last 35 years.” Currently, Benes and CMC Group are involved in the latest Kent Denver construction project, a new building for sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders. He hopes to remain involved with the school for a long time to come.

“I think that’s one of the best aspects

Photo Courtesy C. Benes

For Benes, Kent Denver’s commitment to athletics was one of the most important pieces of his education.

“I don’t think we’d be where we are today without the foundation that Kent Denver provided, and I don’t think Lyndsey would be either. She wouldn’t




have found her direction, and I wouldn’t have, without Kent Denver,” he says. “So we plan to participate and stay involved.”

“I want to encourage a love of activity that they can take from the time that they’re little all through their adulthood and imbue that on their own kids,” she says.

Like Benes, Elizabeth Right Reiss ’00 spent much of her time at Kent Denver on the athletic field. A three-sport varsity athlete, she has taken the active foundation she found at Kent Denver and applied it to her professional life.

Her own love of athletics— one she will share with her recently-born daughter, Caroline—is one she developed at Kent Denver.





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“I feel like the lessons I learned through sports at Kent Denver and at college put me on this mission to be supportive of girls and kids in sports,” she says. “I want girls to see that they can be feminine and smart and still play sports.”

“Good coaches are why so many girls stuck with athletics at Kent Denver. The teachers and the community were so supportive, and allowed us to be good athletes and do well in school and participate in extracurricular activities. We could do it all,” she says.

Reiss played varsity field hockey and lacrosse. She and one of her closest Kent Denver friends, Jenny Rice ’99, also played varsity ice hockey on the boys’ team. Reiss credits her male classmates with giving her the most support in her athletic endeavors.

To do that, Reiss works as a Sport and Exercise Psychology Wellness Specialist. In her role, she works with parents and kids involved in exercise programs who need extra motivation. She motivates kids to stay involved in wellness and movement without pushing them to the point of disinterest.

“Find who you are and stick with it, that's what's going to make you happy instead of being told who you should be.”

“I always felt like they were the ones who were really proud of us for being out there, and they really encouraged us to find our niche in athletics,” she says.

Photo Courtesy E. Reiss

Though she never had him as a coach, Reiss also credits Scott Yates as a hugely influential figure in her education.

Liz Right Reiss ’00 and Margot Duke Simpson ’03



“I want to change lives in the way that I found a lot of the coaches and teachers at Kent Denver changed mine,” she says. “I try to teach kids that they can be whomever they want. It’s great to be athletic, but you don’t have to try to be like every other kid in high school. I teach them to try to stay true to themselves. Find who you are and stick with it. That’s what’s going to make you happy instead of being told who you should be.”




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After graduating from college, Kendyl Salcito ’00, a classmate of Reiss’s, traveled to Thailand to help locals work on their language skills in hopes of improving their job prospects in ecotourism. It’s there, she says, that she first discovered the impact of American politics around the globe. This realization set her on the path to journalism school and while working on her master’s thesis on the complex, often tenuous relationship between corporations and communities, she thought she should establish her own nonprofit organization. In 2008, NomoGaia was born. “That work led me directly into NomoGaia because I thought this was an imminently solvable problem. I thought companies could understand their communities better and that could generate good for everybody involved.” Eight years later, Salcito spends her days doing any number of activities for her organization. Some days she stares at spreadsheets while looking into companies’ employment and community practices, but many other days are spent in countries around the globe speaking with businesses and community members. In February 2016, Salcito was in Belize on sugar plantations talking to farmers about the industry, labor and wage conditions and the effects of the global sugar market; in March she was in Peru looking at a gold mine and traveling to communities around the mine, asking about their access to water, their livelihoods and the way they interact with the company.

Photo: Rachel Gr


“Businesses have a really complex interaction with human rights. They can be a real source of good and they can have some extremely adverse impacts. I don’t think they’re equipped to identify those impacts because their job is to extract oil or gold or manufacture things or grow plants,” Salcito says. “My aim is to create easy-to-implement, clear and data-driven tools for them to evaluate their operations, and then make improvements where their impacts are shown to be negative.”

In addressing these issues, Salcito tries to make sure the outcomes help workers as well as communities. She credits her Kent Denver history teachers Andy O’Hara and George McNear for opening her eyes to global issues. “They were really committed to broadening horizons. They cared about us and recognized that Kent Denver students had lived relatively sheltered lives and wanted to expose them to broader and bigger ideas,” Salcito says. “Kent’s Denver's education is focused on both an academic and intellectual dimension, and also sort of a personality dimension,” she continues. “Mr. McNear had me pegged as a Type A, OCD kind of student from the start, and he was right!” And for Salcito, being pegged as that student was one of the best things that could have happened to her. She relayed one story about McNear taking 1.72 points off of a grade for note cards that were too organized. She fought the deduction, only to realize that McNear was making a point about not sweating the small stuff.

Photo: Rachel Greiman

“I ended up really valuing the bad grades I got at Kent Denver. I didn’t at the time—I fought them at the time—but they were really good for me,” she says. “And I would hope that Kent Denver students today have the opportunity to learn from their shortcomings and face them head on and suffer the heartache of a B- while they’re still in high school and while they’re surrounded by staff who want to help them do better next time.” 






Though she hesitates to use such a strong word for it, Laurie Emrich ’71, has also spent her life building foundations for healthcare services—often for women—around the globe. L sy rte

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Emrich came to Kent School for Girls for her sophomore, junior and senior years of high school. “I had a difficult time in some ways. It was rigorous, more so than my public school had been,” she says. “I was stretched by Kent, but I enjoyed it so much that when I went to college I found the first school I went to didn’t challenge me enough.” While attending the Kent School for Girls, Emrich spent time outside of school volunteering for Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains. She credits her

“I try to be an ally.”

Knowing she wanted to be involved in international development, Emrich quickly moved on to graduate school after college, and has since spent the entirety of her career in the nonprofit sector. Her first role in the development world was in what is now the Congo, working on health systems there. “I lived there for four-and-a-half years and worked on a primary healthcare project helping the government—through the private voluntary sector— strengthen the infrastructure of the primary healthcare services they delivered,” she says. After returning to the States, Emrich remained active in development and international public health, but broadened her spectrum so she could be more involved in philanthropy as well. She did so both as an individual donor and as a consultant to foundations and nonprofits around the country. “I work in philanthropy and with foundations that are working to create a more just and sustainable world,” she says. “A world that supports people’s dignity and access to meeting their basic human needs.” When discussing why she has chosen to dedicate herself to philanthropy, Emrich notes her own “financial privilege.” “I try to be an ally,” she says. “As a person of financial privilege, I’ve tried to spend my life giving resources and quality of life to people in communities with less access.”

family’s philanthropic values for setting her on her own journey in the world of development and nonprofits. “A lot of what I do now spurred from my family background; my father was very active in civil rights in the Denver area. He was the president of Yellow Cab in Denver for a number of years. They were the first taxi company to hire black cab drivers. He was also active in the Urban League. Those interests and values that I have really sprung from my home environment.”



Recently, Emrich was asked to serve on the board of the Global Fund for Women, one of the leading foundations funding the development of women’s human rights all over the world. “They give something on the order of 18 million in grants each year, and they’re building women’s voices and working on issues of violence against women worldwide,” says Emrich. “I’m really excited to be a part of that.”


Like Emrich, Brett Goldberg ’95 also wants to give back, though in a different way. He recently returned to Kent Denver as an advisory board member of our Entrepreneurial Opportunity Network, or EON.

first, software-as-a-service platform focused on property inspections.




An entrepreneur himself, Goldberg sees tremendous value in encouraging students to explore their ideas from a young age.

“We take what has traditionally been a clipboard and graph paper experience to the digital era. We are allowing field users to capture data more efficiently, and in so doing, it enables better customer support and a variety of productivity gains for the insurance marketplace.”

Though Goldberg can’t credit Kent Denver for sparking an interest in technological entrepreneurship—at least not directly— he does believe the school provided him with the tools to get there, including allowing him to discover, explore and pursue his passions. Ph



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“I think high school is an opportunity to really start to understand the definitions of entrepreneurship and self-identify as an entrepreneur,” he says. “That opportunity didn’t exist on campus 20 years ago. I’m thrilled the campus and the community are rallying around it.” After leaving Kent Denver, Goldberg attended Duke University, but it wasn’t until graduating from there that he found his calling in entrepreneurship. “I graduated from Duke right as the Dot Com era was in flight,” he says. “I saw it as an opportunity to really carve a path for myself.” And carve a path he did; Goldberg has been involved in numerous technology startups as an entrepreneur. Currently, Goldberg is heavily involved in Spex, a mobile-

“I think High School Is an Opportunity to understand Entrepreneurship and Self-Identity...”

“In some ways I wish I had been there longer,” he laughs. “Kent Denver provided a fantastic foundation for learning and exploring passions and curiosities. That foundation continues to make its way through my life and my career as an entrepreneur.”

Photo Courtesy B. Goldberg

It was also at Kent Denver that Goldberg began to appreciate life’s challenges. He encounters challenges regularly in his work, but thinks of them as positive steps in the projects in which he is involved. “Challenges only make you stronger. I felt for a long time, naively, that it was bad to fail, but now I do all the time. And I hope they’re always small failures—ones I can recover from quickly and easily—but I have come to appreciate the value of making mistakes. That’s the best way to grow.”






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As a member of LinkedIn's marketing team, Slattery works with some of the company’s largest financial services clients, such as Bank of America, TD Bank, Merrill Lynch and Capital One.

“They are all advertising on LinkedIn,” says Slattery. “I help them develop their content strategy and implement their marketing campaigns on the platform.” “A lot of what I do revolves around public speaking and presentation and being able to illustrate the value of LinkedIn to all of our customers,” he continues. Slattery began working for LinkedIn as a college student at Syracuse University. He interned at the company after his junior year, and picked up a full-time job after graduating, moving to New York city to work and live with three other Kent Denver alumni, John Lantz, Winston Swomley and Brent Zaterman, all Class of 2009.


Slattery has been with LinkedIn through a time of tremendous growth; according to LinkedIn, the platform had 150 million users in 2012, around the time Slattery was interning. At press time, the company reports more than 465 million users, tripling its audience in just 4 years. Slattery has seen similar growth in the staff, as well. “When I started at LinkedIn we had maybe 100, 150 people in the office. Now we’re at about 500 people, with five floors in the Empire State Building,” he says. Slattery credits his time at Kent Denver for helping him grow alongside the company, especially in regard to the public speaking he uses so frequently in his job. At Kent Denver, Slattery served as student body president and was



actively involved in both athletics and theater. “My public speaking skills really started then, and that’s been a huge asset to me now in my professional life—getting up in front of large groups, in front of clients and CMOs and being able to coherently and thoughtfully explain myself and the value of LinkedIn,” he says. Slattery credits teachers like Nick Lefferts and Peter Ellis for teaching him to express himself thoughtfully, orally and in writing. “I think the ability to actually communicate when I went to college was rare; that really helped me. I could write an effective paper, create an effective argument and wrap it all together in a very polished way. That’s definitely not something I think everyone has,” he says. “And that’s still serving me well. Every single day I use those skills and I wouldn’t have had those if I hadn’t had the early focus on communication at Kent Denver.” If Slattery could change one thing about his time at Kent Denver, he would go back and take Ted Reece’s guitar class. “I loved metals, it was one of my favorite creative outlets, but I wish I had basic guitar. I wish I could pick up an instrument and play. All I can play is the air guitar, and I destroy it,” he jokes. In October 2016, Slattery agreed with LinkedIn to work remotely from Colorado. He and his sister, Megan ’04 drove from New York to Colorado, so Slattery could spend more time with family. He anticipates returning to New York every couple of months to meet with his clients face-to-face.

Photo Courtesy K. Slattery

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This article’s most recent graduate, Keegan Slattery ’09, has spent his time since college working for LinkedIn—a social media platform dedicated to networking and professional growth—which prides itself on building strong foundations for its users.

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College Matriculation

Midwest Illinois: Northwestern University, University of Chicago Indiana: Indiana University, University of Notre Dame Michigan: Kalamazoo College, University of Michigan Minnesota: Carleton College, Macalester College Missouri: Saint Louis University, Washington University in St. Louis Ohio: Miami University Wisconsin: University of Wisconsin

Northeast Maine: Bowdoin College, Colby College New Hampshire: Dartmouth College Massachusetts: Amherst College, Berklee College of Music, Boston University, Harvard University, Northeastern University, Tufts University Connecticut: Trinity College, Wesleyan University Rhode Island: Brown University New York: Cornell University, Colgate University, Hamilton College, US Military Academy, Vassar College Vermont: Middlebury College Mid-Atlantic Colorado

Pennsylvania: Carnegie Mellon University, Haverford College, Lafayette College, University of Pennsylvania Maryland: Johns Hopkins University, St. John’s College

University of Colorado Boulder, University of Denver West Arizona: University of Arizona California: University of California Santa Cruz, California Polytechnic State University, Chapman University, Claremont McKenna College, Loyola Marymount University, Occidental College, University of the Pacific, Pitzer College, Santa Clara University, Soka University of America, University of Southern California, Whittier College Montana: Montana State University Oregon: Lewis & Clark College, University of Oregon, Willamette University Washington: Gonzaga University, Seattle University

South Virginia: University of Richmond, University of Virginia, Washington & Lee University North Carolina: Wake Forest University Tennessee: Vanderbilt University Georgia: Emory University, University of Georgia, Oxford College of Emory University Louisiana: Tulane University Texas: Baylor University, Southern Methodist University, Texas Christian University International France: La Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture

Perspective Winter 2017  

Kent Denver School's alumni magazine provides highlights of current campus news and updates on our graduates in Colorado and around the worl...