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285 Cory’s Lane Portsmouth, Rhode Island 02871 Address Service Requested


Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage PAID Permit No. 3 Portsmouth, RI


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Thank You!

The aim of Portsmouth Abbey School is to help young men and women grow in knowledge and grace. Grounded in the Catholic faith and 1500-year-old Benedictine intellectual tradition, the School fosters:

Portsmouth Abbey thanks the hundreds of alumni, parents, and friends whose philanthropic participation helped the School reach another Annual Fund benchmark. Your generosity is vital to every moment in the classroom, every lesson learned on the athletic field and stage, and every friendship built in our student houses. Each year, your generous participation ensures the continuation of Portsmouth Abbey's unique campus atmosphere and reaffirms your singular role in the Portsmouth Abbey community. On behalf of every student, teacher and monk, thank you. Special thanks to the class agents, the reunion fundraisers, the parent volunteers, and the Alumni Leadership Committee, whose dedication made this year such a tremendous success.

Reverence for God and the human person Respect for learning and order Responsibility for the shared experience of community life


Right Rev. Dom Caedmon Holmes, O.S.B. Abbot and Chancellor Portsmouth, RI Mr. John M. Regan, III ’68, P ’07 Chairman Watch Hill, RI Mr. Thomas Anderson ’73 Gwynedd Valley, PA Sr. M. Therese Antone, RSM, Ed. D. Newport, RI Dom Joseph Byron, O.S.B. Portsmouth, RI Mr. Frederick C. Childs ’75, P ’08 Cambridge, MA Mr. Creighton O. Condon ’74, P ’07, ’10 London, England Dom Francis Crowley, O.S.B. Portsmouth, RI Mr. Stephen M. Cunningham ’72 Greenwich, CT Mr. James D. Farley, Jr. ’81 Dearborn, MI Dr. Timothy Flanigan ’75, P ’06, ’09, ’11 Tiverton, RI Mr. James S. Gladney P ’10, ’11 Barrington, RI Dom Gregory Havill, O.S.B. Portsmouth, RI Dr. Margaret S. Healey P ’91 New Vernon, NJ Dr. Gregory Hornig ’68, P ’01 Prairie Village, KS

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Mr. M. Benjamin Howe ’79 Wellesley, MA Rev. F. Washington Jarvis Dorchester Center, MA Rev. Dom Damian Kearney, O.S.B. ‘45 Portsmouth, RI Mr. Charles E. Kenahan ’77, P ’12 Swampscott, MA Mr. Edward G. Kirby ’83 Jamestown, RI Mr. Alejandro J. Knoepffler ’78, P ’12 Coral Gables, FL Ms. Devin McShane P’09, ’11 Providence, RI Mr. James S. Mulholland, III ’79 Sudbury, MA Mr. Robert A. Savoie P ’10, ’11 Bristol, RI Right Rev. Dom Mark Serna, O.S.B. Portsmouth, RI Ms. Kathleen Boland Stevens ’95 Brookline, MA Rev. Dom Luke L. Travers, O.S.B. ’75 Morristown, NJ Mr. Samuel G. White ’64 New York, NY Very Rev. Dom Ambrose Wolverton, O.S.B. Prior Portsmouth, RI

Join Us October 1-3, 2010 Classes ending in ‘0 or ‘5 and all Diman Club Classes (graduation before 1960) are invited to return to campus for Reunion Weekend.

We’ve planned a weekend full of great events for the entire family! Check out some of the highlights below. Class Dinners New England Clambake Reunion Celebration Dinner with live music Children’s Activities Fair v Athletic Events Alumni Book Display and Art Exhibit Back to the Classroom with Favorite Faculty Members and Students 50th Reunion Mass for the Class of 1960 An Insider’s Tour of Portsmouth Abbey Lourdes Pilgrimage Recollection and Brunch with Chapel Talk & Rosary Alumni Sailing Team Regatta Reunion Golf Outings are available on Friday, October 1st. Touch base with your classmates and call or email Fran Cook to book a tee time! Log on to the Alumni Community to get information on your Class Dinner location and to check out “Look Who’s Coming” for a list of those members of your class who have registered to come to Reunion 2010! Questions? Call Fran Cook at 401-643-1281 or email

Cover: Dominic Palumbo ‘74 of Moon in the Pond Farm Photograph by Jason Houston/

We look forward to welcoming you back to campus in October!

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SCHOOL RELIGIOUS LIFE AND MONASTIC RENEWAL by John M. Regan, III ‘68 P’07 Chairman of the Board of Regents comprehensive picture of student spiritual life, The preservation and evolution

relying on the results of focus groups and a student

of our Catholic Benedictine tradi-

survey as well as input from current students Noel

tion is essential to the success of Portsmouth Abbey School.

Keum    ’ 10



Luke Gleason         ’10 and faculty

members Blake Billings,

fellow Board member Reverend

Lizzie Benestad, Dom

Edmund, and Kale Zelden.

Tony Jarvis reminded the Board

Gain external perspectives on trends in Catholic

at its April meeting, “great schools

unabashedly must stand for some-


thing in which they believe. Great

particular. Here we benefited from the insights

schools delight in being different.”

of Prior Gregory Mohrman of St. Louis Priory, the

At Portsmouth Abbey School, ac-

experience of Dom Luke Childs at St. Mary’s Abbey

tive promotion of religious and spiritual life is the most salient

at the Delbarton School, and information on trends






differentiator between us and other schools who also promise

in Catholic education presented by Richard Burke

academic rigor and personal development. This difference is ex-

of Catholic School Management.

plicit in our Mission Statement: “The aim of Portsmouth Abbey School is to help young men and women grow in knowledge


Discuss ways to continue to improve the

and grace… the School fosters reverence for God and the hu-







man person; respect for learning and order; and responsibility

and renew our monastic presence. While these

for the shared experience of community life.” For eighty-five

discussions were wide-ranging, Board members

years, our Catholic Benedictine differentiation has relied on

learned about successful vocational programs at

two fundamental supports: a strong spiritual life program for

both St. Louis Priory and St. Mary’s Abbey. For

students, combined with the presence of the Monastic commu-

example, at St. Louis Priory there are thirty

nity. With only thirteen monks (five over the age of eighty),

monks in the community, and half of these are

conversations with alumni, current students, lay faculty, par-

under forty years old. In addition, we heard about

ents, and other friends inform us that monastic vocations are


our biggest challenge.


Since April, the Board of Regents has discussed ways to ensure that our religious and spiritual core is retained and enhanced. In early April, the Board and a number of key guests dedicated a day-and-a-half retreat to:



collaborations that





have and



applications enhanced



spiritual lifeprograms. Then we heard suggestions from Doms Damian, Francis, and Gregory on how the







vocations outreach.

Review existing information regarding the scope

and effectiveness of our spiritual life programs and what they mean to our students and other

The net effect of this meeting was what Abbott Caedmon referred to as “positive energy” on a topic where much

constituents. Board members Ed Kirby ‘83, Tim

uncertainty and a certain amount of defeatism had previ-

Flanigan ‘75 and Sheila Buckley organized a

ously existed. The Board agreed to take this information


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and begin to develop suggested approaches that will yield

constituents to develop a strategy and an implementation process

a clear strategy and actions. The Board also agreed that it

to be presented at the September Board meeting. Subsequent to

would be appropriate to offer Board support in terms of

the meeting, formal approval for our plan was secured from the

people, resources and funding once a direction had been

Monastic Council. Further, I am pleased to announce that former


Board Chair David Moran ‘71 has agreed to accept the lead role in developing the way forward. David’s special knowledge of the

The Board reconvened in June and dedicated most of the meet-

School and its Mission, coupled with his trusted relationship with

ing to a discussion of how best to capitalize on the enthusiasm

the Monastic Community, make him the ideal candidate to take

generated at the April retreat. Specific proposals were reviewed

on this responsibility. I urge you to share your thoughts and ideas

to research and establish programs that bring prospective vo-

on this critical topic with David.

cations to the Monastery, secure initial twelve-month funding and program direction approvals, and develop strategies that

I am very pleased that the Board and the Monastery are address-

will better promote our Monastery, develop partnerships and

ing this issue head-on. While we are certain that this is the right

relationships with potential vocation feeders, and establish a

thing to take on, the directions we will take and the results are

regular Board accountability to monitor and adapt the agreed-

uncertain. In a recent memo thanking the Board for its work

upon approaches.

and enthusiastically embracing the Monastic Renewal topic, Abbot Caedmon advised us that “while there is no magic solution

Following a vibrant debate, the Board agreed to name this effort

to the vocation situation,” we can make “ourselves known to

Monastic Renewal, to hire and provide budget resources for a

and available and open to those who might hear such a call to

full-time person to lead the effort for twelve months beginning

try the monastic life at Portsmouth Abbey.”

July 1, and to charge this individual with the responsibility to work with the Board, the Monastic Community and other key

We invite your prayer and support as we proceed.

Where are you now? Where are you going? How will you get there? The monks of Portsmouth Abbey have found answers to these questions in the Rule of St. Benedict. . . Could this be the answer for you? We invite you to experience a week of prayer, work, rest, and recreation in our Monastic Life Experience Program for single, college - educated, Catholic men, 21- 45 years old, who wish to consider a call to monastic life. The program is “open-ended” and will be scheduled to suit you – you may spend a few days or a week or more at the abbey, experiencing the life of the monk – Ora et Labora – including daily mass, common prayer, lectio divina, manual labor, and conferences on monastic history or spirituality, with opportunity for exercise and rest on our 500 acres on Narragansett Bay. The Monastic Life Experience Program is an opportunity to familiarize yourself with monastic life and consider the possibility that This Call May Be For You. Vocations inquiries: Portsmouth A bbe y

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2 85 C ory ’s L a n e

Port smo u t h , Rhode Is l a n d 0 2 8 7 1


7/29/10 12:35 PM

CONTENTS Stay Connected To keep up with general news and information about Portsmouth Abbey School, we encourage you to bookmark the website. If you are an alumnus/a, please visit and join our Alumni Community. Check our our listing of upcoming alumni events here on campus and around the country. And please remember to update your contact information on our Alumni Community pages where you can find out more about Reunion 2010, our Tenth Annual Golf Scholarship Tournament, and share news and search for fellow alumni around the world: If you would like to receive our e-newsletter, Monthly Musings, please make sure we have your email address (send to: To submit class notes and photos (1-5 mgs.), please email: or mail to Portsmouth Abbey Office of Development and Alumni Affairs, 285 Cory’s Lane, Portsmouth, RI 02871.

School Religious Life and Monastic Renewal by John M. Regan III ‘68 P’07, Chairman of the Board of Regents


Message from Headmaster DeVecchi


Commencement 2010


Interview with Abbot Notker Wolf, O. S. B.


Portsmouth Institute Wrap-up


Trends in College Admissions – Portsmouth Abbey and Beyond by Mary McDonald, Director of College Counseling


Living Within a Residential Community by Meghan Fonts, Director of Admissions


Fine Young Cannibals by Dr. Michael Bonin


Alumni Spotlight: Feeding Body and Soul


Fred Fisher ’50; Fr. Joe Healey ‘56; Geoff Bloomingdale ’67; Nion McEvoy ’70; Donald Macdonald ‘73; Mike Panciera ‘73; Dominic Palumbo ’74; Mark Vermylen ’78; John Pappalardo ’90; Conor Bohan ‘86 ; Fr. Catesby (Chris) Clay ’92; Patrick Leger ‘92; Jacob Sahms ‘95; Andrea Sahms ‘99; Kate Ferrara Homes ‘00 The Portsmouth Abbey Community Garden by Allie DeSisto Micheletti ‘05


Abbaye de Fecamp and Benedictine Liqueur by Dom Damian Kearney, O.S.B. ‘45


The Portsmouth Service Program by Jim Morrell ‘68


If you have opinions or comments on the articles contained in our Bulletin, please email: or write to the Office of Communications, Portsmouth Abbey School, 285 Cory’s Lane, Portsmouth, RI 02871

The Lord of the Smile by Fr. Bernard (John) Murphy, CFR ‘73


Book Review - Think Twice by Michael Mauboussin ‘82 Reviewed by J. Clifford Hobbins


Winter/Spring Athletics


Please include your name and phone number.

Paying it Forward by Giving Back... A Case for Scholarship Support by Patrick Burke ‘86, Assistant Headmaster for Development




In Memoriam


Class Notes


The Portsmouth Abbey Alumni Bulletin is published bi-annually for alumni, parents and friends by Portsmouth Abbey School, a Catholic Benedictine preparatory school for young men and women in Forms III-VI (grades 9-12) in Portsmouth, RI.

The editor reserves the right to edit articles for content, length, grammar, magazine style, and suitabilty to the mission of Portsmouth Abbey School. Headmaster: Dr. James DeVecchi Assistant Headmaster for Development: Patrick J. Burke ‘86 Editors: Kathy Heydt, Katherine Giblin Stark Art Director: Kathy Heydt Photography: Bristol Workshops, Jez Coulson, Andrea Hansen, Kathy Heydt, Blake Jackson, Kate Whitney Lucey, Louis Walker

Visit our website at:

Individual alumni photo credits can be found within each article.

Shop online at the Portsmouth Abbey Bookstore:

Join us on Facebook: Log in and search Portsmouth Abbey


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Our Abbey School community was pleased and honored on Sunday, May 30 to celebrate Portsmouth’s 80th Commencement exercises in honor of the 101 members of the Class of 2010 – our largest graduating class ever. The Class of 2010 is a wonderful and diverse group that did very well at the Abbey and is now headed to fine colleges and universities, well-prepared for their studies and well-grounded in their Catholic Benedictine values. It was a special treat for all of us to have Abbot Primate Notker Wolf, the head of the worldwide Benedictine Confederation, as our Commencement Speaker. The Primate reminded us that with our many freedoms comes the responsibility to seek the global well-being of mankind. He also surprised and delighted us with a wonderful flute recital during the Commencement Mass. In addition to his Commencement duties, and as Abbot Caedmon stated, we were most fortunate to have had Abbot Notker “all to ourselves” for the entire weekend. Abbot Notker has a rich background in German Benedictine education, and it was most gratifying to hear him speak so positively about our Monastery and School community. A good deal of my discussion with him centered on the 21st-Century Benedictine boarding school tradition. At Portsmouth these days, as in most Benedictine schools around the world, the mission is being delivered through a partnership and trust between the monastic community and a core of dedicated lay men and women – men and women who carry much of the responsibility for the daily operation of the School, men and women who have been attracted to Portsmouth because of its Mission. I often quip that heading a coeducational boarding school in the 21st Century is not exactly “contemplative.” The wellconceived and carefully executed Board of Regents’ governance model at Portsmouth provides an effective structure for me and Portsmouth’s administration and faculty, working under the direction of the Board, to partner with the Monastery in the fulfillment of our Mission to help young men and women to grow in knowledge and grace. As with Deb and me – now starting our 38th year at Portsmouth and our 11th


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in the Headmaster’s Office – the core of our teaching faculty are lay men and women – again, professionals who have been attracted to Portsmouth because of its Mission. These are men and women who have come to Portsmouth to work at a monastic school and who truly want to spend their personal and professional lives in our Benedictine environment.

b e e a b t c p

T M l m

Especially important to our faculty – as it was to Deb and me – is the ability to raise a family on a campus so richly influenced by its Benedictine foundation. Indeed, it is crucial to our success that Portsmouth is able to attract men and women to work alongside our monastic faculty, and it is most gratifying to me when we are able to attract and retain talented, dedicated, mission-driven faculty to Portsmouth Abbey School. We have much to be proud of in this regard, as we honored at this year’s Prize Day the 2010 Sidler Award winners for excellence in teaching, Roberto Guerenabarrena, chair of our Modern Languages Department, and Aileen Baker, newly appointed dean of residential life. Furthermore, recent appointments such as Nancy Brzys as dean of faculty and Blake Billings ’77 as the chair of the Christian Doctrine Department reassure us that gifted teaching professionals are choosing to spend their careers and lives at Portsmouth.  Blake’s work is a particularly good example of our lay/Benedictine partnership as he works closely with the Monastery on mission-specific programs ranging from the liturgy in the Church to the Christian Doctrine curriculum to the administration of our Christian Community Service programs. As well as our model of partnership with the monastic community is working, as rich as our tradition is in lay/monastic partnership, and as deep as the potential pool of talented and devoted lay faculty is, our challenge is to continue to


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T a i t

P p I a a t c

P ortsm o u t h A bb e y Sc ho ol 10th Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament

be able to recruit and retain the very best men and women in today’s marketplace. For a gifted lay faculty member, especially one with a family, our Catholic Benedictine living and learning environment is what gets them to our doorstep; but in order to commit a life and a career to Portsmouth, there are practical realities that include competitive salaries, comfortable and adequate on-campus housing, support for professional activities, and the ability to retire with dignity. Through many initiatives over the years by the School and Monastery, initiatives so generosity supported by Portsmouth’s loyal constituency, I have seen – and indeed experienced – much progress in Portsmouth’s ability to support its lay faculty: Our salaries have become more competitive, allowing for faculty to be confident in their ability to provide for their families and for the important transitions through their professional lives to retirement. v

OCTOBER 15, 2010 CARNEGIE ABBEY GOLF CLUB Our tournament’s mission is threefold: z To build a greater endowment that continues to fund scholarship opportunities, supporting a Portsmouth Abbey School education for qualified students for whom this opportunity would other wise be out of reach. z

Continued development of campus housing not only is putting faculty families at the core of our student residential programs, but also is allowing Portsmouth to retain its most talented faculty. v

Professional development funding not only supports but is now inspiring growth and institutional creativity.


To recognize the excellent education that a Portsmouth Abbey School student receives during his/her tenure at the School To have a great day on the links with our Portsmouth Abbey family and friends.


There is much work to be done, but major initiatives, such as faculty endowment and campus student and faculty housing in Portsmouth’s Campaign for Excellence, are addressing these goals. Portsmouth, indeed, is blessed with a tradition of monastic/lay partnership and trust that is at the heart our School culture. As I and my administration work to build our lay faculty, as we all work to achieve the goals of our Campaign for Excellence, and, most fundamentally, as our Board of Regents works with the Abbey on Monastic Renewal, our priorities are clear and correct, and the future for Portsmouth is indeed very bright. – Dr. James DeVecchi

How can you help? R Play

in the tournament/sign up a foursome (a portion of the fee is tax-deductible)

R Become R Donate R Don’t

play golf? Join us for the post-tournament reception!

Save the date and watch for your invitation this summer! Want to help? Contact Fran Cook by phone at 401643-1281 or email her at For additional tournament information contact Fran or check our website at


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a sponsor of this event

a silent auction item


7/28/10 9:52 AM


PORTSMOUTH ABBEY SCHOOL held its 80th Commencement exercises on Sunday, May 30, with its largest graduating class ever. Diplomas were conferred upon 101 departing Sixth Formers, from 14 states and 12 countries, before an audience of more than 1,100 family, friends and members of the School community on the School’s Holy Lawn. The concepts of freedom, global responsibility, and the pursuit of truth and goodness were common themes in the day’s speeches. The graduates were reminded by special guest and Commencement Speaker Right Reverend Notker Wolf, O.S.B., that “…our freedoms also mean responsibility, for ourselves, our society, and for the global wellbeing of mankind.” Wolf, Abbot Primate of the worldwide Benedictine Confederation of the Order of Saint Benedict, came from Rome to participate in Commencement ex-


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ercises. He cited Socrates in his comments to the graduates, saying, “Here at Portsmouth Abbey you have learned the importance of truth and free thinking. Socrates followed the voice of his conscience and always sought the truth. Never give up on this search for truth and freedom for all.” Abbot Notker also encouraged the students, “Beyond the amount of material you have learned in class, I hope that at the same time each one of you has grown in character, grown as a human being, grown as a Christian. I hope that your heads have not turned into computer programs or iPads, but that you have developed and strengthened the values in your hearts such as sincerity, faithfulness, selflessness, and love. That you have indeed done this was evidenced yesterday when you received the various awards [at Prize Day].”

Headmaster Dr. James DeVecchi said of Abbot Notker’s participation in Commencement Weekend, “Abbot Notker’s presence was not only a very fitting way to honor our graduates but also provided an opportunity to rejoice in our Benedictine core as we celebrate the accomplishments of the Abbey Class of 2010.” A musician of some note who plays the electric guitar for the Christian rock group Feedback, Abbot Notker is also a classical flautist and delighted those assembled for Commencement Mass with an impromptu performance. Abbot Notker’s Commencement remarks were echoed by Portsmouth Abbey Board of Regents Chairman John M. Regan III ’68 P’07, who said to the graduates, “As you look back on your time at the Abbey, I hope you will rely on some of the intrinsic lessons of our Catholic and Benedictine tradition.


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THE GRADUATES “First and foremost, and regardless of your religious convictions, have faith. History has taught us that opportunities and great and admirable deeds have emerged from difficult times. Have the faith to stay with what you know is right. Second, seek out truth. We live in a world of unprecedented information access. At the Abbey, you have learned to look behind appearances and sort things out in a rational, fact-based manner. Continue to use these skills to make informed choices. Do not be afraid to take Robert Frost’s ‘road less traveled.’




























“Thirdly, with individual rights come responsibilities to community and global society. Benedictines often speak of balance of mind, body and spirit. Are there ways in which we could


balance our enviable American lifestyle differently and be more globally admirable? Go out and be true global citizens.”


Patrick Lohuis, who was selected by his classmates to give the Valedictory address, used equal amounts of humor and reflection as he spoke of his classmates and his four years at the Abbey. Saying the quote “Silence is the perfect herald of joy,” from Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing, “summed up the Class of 2010,” Patrick recounted the awkward silence he felt on his first day of school as new classmates attempted to initiate conversation, the silence of a classroom building during exam week, and “the silence on the other end of the line when you are sitting in Mr. C’s office” trying to explain a prank gone awry. He also spoke poignantly of the agonizing silence experienced by the then -Third Formers when classmate Patrick Johnson died in 2007, but reflected that the sad occurrence strengthened the bond among the Class of 2010 as students selflessly helped each other through the tragedy.


Patrick also spoke of the important presence of the monks on campus – “some of the most approachable people I have ever met who truly care about what kind of person you are”  –   and the valuable lessons he has learned from the












































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faculty members “…who are more than willing to go above and beyond to make sure that every kid doesn’t fall behind.”   He shared that the solid friendships made at the Abbey were “…ones I would never have thought possible. If someone were to tell Third Form me that my best friends here would be from Harlem and the Bahamas, I wouldn’t have believed them for a second.” He gave a special nod to his brother, fellow graduate Ryan, saying, “Coming here, I never felt alone, not because it was so easy to adapt to life here but because I had my brother to help me every step of the way.” Patrick closed his Portsmouth Abbey career the same way he said it started – with a moment of silence. In his comments, Dr. DeVecchi acknowledged the student leadership of graduating Sixth Formers Kathleen Timmons and Quent Dickmann as “strong, consistent, positive and powerful,” and recognized Gregory Larsen and Evan Winfrey, who received appointments to the U.S. Military Academy beginning in the fall: “Evan and Greg, your desire to serve our country is admirable and appreciated. Thank you.” Dr. DeVecchi congratulated the Class of 2010 for its many academic, athletic and charitable accomplishments, stating that “noteworthy programs and activities such as our Lourdes Pilgrimage, Appalachia Service Program and this year’s Haiti relief efforts demonstrate the depth of our outreach at Portsmouth Abbey. Led by the Class of 2010, nearly $40,000 was raised this year for many worthwhile causes.” In addition, Portsmouth’s athletic teams captured three Eastern Independent League championships and two New England championships.

cellence in the classroom. The Headmaster also thanked outgoing Dean of Faculty Dr. Fred Zilian and Assistant Head of Student Life Ms. Nancy Brzys for their service in those capacities (they will continue to teach and, in Ms. Brzys’ case, will remain in the administration as the new dean of faculty). The entire audience joined Dr. DeVecchi with a standing ovation for Dom Paschal Scotti, who, after 27 years at the Abbey, received permission to join a hermitage in New Jersey where he will devote his life to prayer.

“Benedictines often speak of balance of mind, body and spirit. Are there ways in which we could balance our enviable American lifestyle differently and be more globally admirable? Go out and be true global citizens.” –John (Mac) Regan III ‘68 P’07

Prize Day was held on Saturday, May 29, at which time students were recognized with a wide range of academic, athletic, service and leadership awards. Complete transcripts of all Commencement 2010 speeches, as well as a full listing of Prize Day awards, can be found on our Web site at page/6192.

Before conferring diplomas on the graduating class, Dr. DeVecchi congratulated the 2010 Sidler Teaching Award recipients, Señor Roberto Guerenabarrena among senior faculty members, and Mrs. Aileen Baker among junior faculty members, for their ex-


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Dr. DeVecchi also acknowledged the families among the Class of 2010 for whom their child in this year’s class is the last in their family to attend Portsmouth Abbey: the Gleasons (Luke ’10, Gus ’07 and Tom ’05); the Hunts (Nick ’10, Brittany ’09 and Matt ’05); the LeComtes (Jean ’10, Janessa ‘97 and Justin ‘00); the Pophams (Grace, Mike ’09 and Jay ’07); and the Sorianos (Paolo ’10, Luis ’07 and Inigo ’05). He also recognized legacy families, including secondgeneration Abbey graduates Tessa Condon ’10 (Creighton ’74), Caroline D’Amario ’10 (Peter ’77), Margaret Reynolds ’10 (Bill ’70) and Kathryn Yao ’10 (Chan Hwa ’70) and third-generation graduates Joseph Gallagher IV ’10 (Joseph III ’77 and Cornelius ’45) and Pierce MacGuire ’10 (Jamie ’70 and Philip ’36).


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Top right: The Yao family with Headmaster and Mrs. DeVecchi following Commencement (from left): Esther Yao, Dr. DeVecchi, ChanHwa Yao ’70, Kathryn Yao ’10, and Deb DeVecchi. Middle row, left: Abbot Caedmon addresses the Portsmouth Abbey School community. Middle row, right: Third-generation graduate Pierce MacGuire ‘10 (second from right), surrounded by his mother, Lanie, brother, Rhoads ‘13, and father, Jamie ‘70, on the Holy Lawn. Bottom row, left: Peter D’Amario ‘77 is recognized as a legacy dad at graduation. Bottom row, middle: Eduardo and Maria Carmen Soriano are acknowledged by the School community as Paolo ’10, the third of three Soriano children to attend the Abbey, graduates. Bottom row, right: Joyful graduates Margaret Reynolds (from left), Mary Kelsey Trumps and Caroline D’Amario chat following the ceremony. Margaret’s dad, Bill, graduated from the Abbey in 1970, and Caroline’s dad, Peter, graduated in 1977.


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Opposite page: Top left: Chido Onyiuke and his mother, ChiChi, celebrate Chido’s graduation. Middle left: The Savoie family (from left): Heather, Alexandra, Madeleine ‘11, graduate Bobby, and Bob, member of the Board of Regents. Bottom left: Patrick (left) and Ryan Lohuis join their dad for a double celebration. Patrick delivered the valedictory address. Top right: The Class of 2010 exits the Church of St. Gregory the Great following the Commencement Mass, where Abbot Primate Notker Wolf, O.S.B. delivered the homily and performed a flute solo for the congregation. Bottom right: Grace Popham (center) celebrates her graduation with her family: (from left) Jeff, Jay ‘07, Mary, Sarah, Michael ’09, and grandparents. Grace will attend College of Charleston next year. This page: Top: The Condon family ( from lefft) celebrates another Abbey graduation: Maeve ‘07, Nell, Patrick Connelly, Anne, Tessa ‘10, Creighton ‘74, Andrew, Jane McSoley and Frances McSoley. Tess will be attending Boston College in the fall. Middle: Joseph Gallagher (center) celebrates graduation with his brother-in-law Andrew, sister Katherine, mother Elizabeth, grandmother Kathryn, and dad Joseph’77. Bottom left: Nancy Brzys looks on with pride at the 2010 graduates. Nancy has been part of the Portsmouth Abbey community for over 28 years. She retired as the assistant headmaster for student life and has accepted a position as the new dean of faculty. She will continue teaching French. Bottom right: Chuck Weeden and Denise Patsos following the Commencement ceremony. Chuck is headed to Georgetown in the fall.


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PRIZE DAY Left: The LeComte family (from left): Janessa ‘97 with her daughter, Jessleanna, Florine, graduate John, and Justin ‘00 celebrate their third Abbey graduation along with Headmaster Jim DeVecchi. Middle: The newly inducted Cum Laude Society members (from left) Tresiree Leduc, Leo Makowski, Kaitlin Gladney, Jung Hyun Eun, Lauren Brodeur, Jae Seung Hwang, Eloise Andry and Katherine Yao, all Class of 2010. Rosaria Munda ‘10 (pictured opposite page) was inducted in 2009, her Fifth Form year. Bottom left: Luke Gleason (center) is joined on Prize Day by (from left) his mother, Dr. Adelaide Nardone, brother Gus ‘07, father Thomas and brother Tom ‘05. Luke was the recipient of the prestigious Headmaster’s Award. Bottom right: The Class of 2010 dedicated its yearbook to science teacher and yearbook advisor Janice Brady. Yearbook editor Tsz “Jacinta” Guan ‘10 made the announcement and congratulated Ms. Brady on the honor. Jacinta is headed to George Washington University in the fall. Opposite page: Top: Mathematics teacher Aileen Baker accepts the Dom Sidler Teaching Award for Junior Faculty, an award based on nominations by peer faculty. Middle left: Rosaria Munda ‘10 and her mother, Josephine, celebrate Rosaria’s numerous achievements recognized during Prize Day. Sara will be attending Princeton University in the fall. Bottom: Head Girl, Katheen Timmons, and Head Boy, Quent Dickmann, on Prize Day.

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D E S T I N AT I O NS Amherst College

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Babson College 2

Roanoke College 2

Baylor University

Rochester Institute of Technology

Belmont University

Roger Williams University 2

Boston College 4

Rollins College

Boston University 2

Sacred Heart University

Butler University

Salve Regina University 3

Carnegie Mellon University

Southwestern University

Claremont McKenna College

St. John’s College

Clemson University

The Catholic University of America 5

College of Charleston 3

The College of Wooster

College of Mount Saint Vincent

The George Washington University 2

College of the Holy Cross 2

The University of Arizona

Cornell University 2

The University of Texas, Austin

Duke University

Trinity College 3

Eckerd College

Trinity University 2

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical

United States Military Academy 2

University – Florida

Emmanuel College Emory University Endicott College 2

University College Cork University of Connecticut 2 University of Denver University of Illinois at

Fairfield University

Fordham University

University of Massachusetts

Georgetown University 2 Guilford College Hobart and William Smith Colleges Johns Hopkins University Loyola Marymount University Loyola University Maryland Lynchburg College New York University 3 Northeastern University 3 Pratt Institute 2 Princeton University Providence College

Urbana-Champaign Dartmouth

University of Miami University of Pennsylvania University of Rhode Island 2 University of Vermont University of Virginia Villanova University Virginia Polytechnic Institute

and State University

Wentworth Institute of Technology Wheelock College Williams College 2

Purdue University


201073.P.indd 13


7/28/10 9:54 AM

An Interview with Abbot Notker Wolf, O.S.B. Right Reverend Notker Wolf, O.S.B., the Abbot Primate of the worldwide Benedictine Confederation, was the School’s 80th Commencement Speaker. As Abbot Primate, Rt. Rev. Wolf is the elected head of the Benedictine Confederation of the Order of Saint Benedict, which is comprised of twenty-one congregations of monasteries worldwide. The Abbot Primate is elected every four years by the Congress of Abbots, which is held in Rome. Abbot Notker has held the position since his election in 2000. He is the liaison between the Benedictine Confederation and the Holy See in Rome and is the de facto ambassador for the Order of Saint Benedict. Abbot Notker resides at Sant’ Anselmo, the Confederation’s headquarters in Rome. Born in Bavaria, Germany, Abbot Notker is a musician of some note who plays the electric guitar for the Christian rock group Feedback.  He has been performing both Christian rock and traditional Benedictine music since 1981 and counts The Rolling Stones and ZZ Top among the groups that have influenced his music. He is also a classical flautist. Abbot Caedmon Holmes, O.S.B., said the energetic Abbot Primate is well-liked and respected among the Benedictines of the world: “He travels all over the planet on monastic business and is considered perspicacious and realistic, but also very positive and optimistic and encouraging, at a time when very many monasteries are experiencing difficulties, with diminished numbers and dearth of vocations,” said Abbot Caedmon. Abbot Notker was elected in the year 2000 for an initial eight-year term, and then re-elected for an additional four years by an overwhelming majority at the Abbots’ Congress of 2008. During Abbot Notker’s visit to campus, he graciously agreed to answer a few questions about life at Sant’Anselmo Abbey and his duties as Abbot Primate.


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Can you tell us a little bit about life as a resident at Sant’ Anselmo Abbey? At Sant’ Anselmo I have the privilege to be together with many young people. You don’t even feel that you are getting older! At the College, we are 120 professors and students coming from 40 nations, leading a monastic life, not the life of a strict monastery but one adapted to the students’ situation here. We’re up at 6:00AM, have prayers and Mass at 6:20, then breakfast, then class at 8:30AM. We are eating together, serving each other at tables, cleaning up and doing the dishes together. It is a cheerful community... but it must be built anew every year because one-third is changing. That is the job of the Prior (Fr. Elias Lorenzo, formerly of Delbarton), who is doing a fine job. We have a problem right now: we need to renovate our building. Since it was inaugurated in 1900, no renovation has been done. Things are falling apart: our windows, roof, and tower. Sant’ Anselmo is subsidized every year by each monastery through a capital tax to help pay for operating costs. But we must raise the money to pay for things like this renovation, which is one of the reasons I keep busy traveling around the world! We have heard that the Pope’s affinity with St. Benedict is related to his fervent hope to restore Catholic culture in its true sense. Has he shared his thoughts about this with you? The Pope appreciates St. Benedict, the Rule of St. Benedict, and the Benedictines because in the past they were one of the main elements to build up Europe; they gave Europe its culture. All Latin manuscripts and Latin literature - we wouldn’t have those without the monks and monasteries. But the whole education formation, rooting the people in God...that’s what the Benedictines did, and


7/28/10 9:54 AM

that is what the Pope wants, that we come back to that so that God is the real center of our lives and not “me, ourselves...” The Pope chose the name of St. Benedict because St. Benedict is called the “Father of the Occident,” the Father of the Western world. As Abbot Primate, you serve as the administrative head of 8,000 monks and 16,000 nuns and sisters. What do you feel is the most compelling issue facing the Benedictine order today? Are you hopeful for the future of vocations worldwide? In many parts of the world, it is the problem of vocations... we have no more children in Europe. How do we get vocations when there are no children? I am amazed sometimes and ask, where are the novices coming from? Because we do have them...but in the last century every family had 4 or 6 children, so a large number of people entered religious life. Now families are smaller, so of course that demographic situation is reflected in a lack of monks. But we do have vocations, many good vocations, so we can be grateful. Because there are fewer monks, the people and communities should grow closer together. We have been infected by the individualism of the 19th and 20th centuries. I would like to see more of these communities as one body. The inner problem of the monastic communities is not a lack of religiosity, but a lack of communion, of belonging, living together, showing interest in each other. I can see some kind of revival in that; I am not pessimistic. Sometimes, when we are fewer in number, we become closer.



Can you name two practical problems that face any monastery today that would interfere with a vibrant prayer life? Well, certainly the individualism that I mentioned. Looking ahead, there are financial considerations for monasteries. In former times, monasteries were autonomous - they had farms and could live upon the farm and the land. But nowadays, there are so many restrictions on those farms - what is permissible, what is not - it becomes difficult. In Germany, we could have far more cows on our land, but we are not allowed by the European Union - in fact, we are subsidized if we don’t use our fields, even though we must take care of the fields... but we are not allowed to grow grain! In other parts of the world, people are really suffering because of these types of restrictions. We understand that you spend a great deal of time on the road as a representative of the Benedictine Confederation. What experience has had the most profound impact on you? I travel much but I don’t see anything - I know the airports and the inside of cars, taxis and our Benedictine Houses! I am only the Abbot of Sant’ Anselmo in Rome, but in order to unify our whole confederation I try to be present at national gatherings. It can be a grueling pace. In the first half of February, for example, I was in India. Three days later, I went to California, then Alabama, and three days later, to South Africa! But the most profound impact in all of my travels is to meet with so many people of different cultures and to discover the Lord in all of them. It is so enriching, a wonderful experience.

You actively engage in public debates about social issues such as unemployment and family policy and have been an advocate for a socially responsible market economy. How does personal spirituality play a role in political morality? Nowadays, a businessman or entrepreneur cannot think only of the profits or bottom line of his company. He or she has to reflect upon the situation of his or her people. We have a responsibility for the well-being of the company itself, but also for the well-being of the people working there, living in that area, and, in fact, the common good of the entire world. We must only look to the oil situation in the Gulf of Mexico and to China buying fields in Africa. We must have a kind of Copernican Revolution - we must get rid of just our own personal view, that individualism - and have a shift in our way of looking at things. It is important for the sake of our humanity. God has given us everything, to enjoy it and live upon it - but it is not just for me, it is for others, too. Of course, it is difficult to convince people to think more about others than themselves. When did you realize you had a vocation for both monasticism and music? Are they similar vocations? I didn’t feel a vocation for music, really. I started singing at home at 4 years old. I later played the recorder and violin. I was supposed to join the school orchestra with the violin, but I realized there was no flute (in the orchestra). We were playing Beethoven’s First Symphony, and there was a big solo for flute and...nothing! So I said, “OK, I shall play the flute!” I gave up the violin - two instruments were too much, and I had to concentrate on getting my degrees and continuing my studies. My parents were poor, and I had to start my own life. I have continued music throughout my life. Music is a sign of our joy in community. Later, when I was head of a school for students 10-18 years of age, we were holding a circus and the students in the band asked to me cover “Locomotive Breath” from Jethro Tull - a solo - so I did it! I played with them - they gave me a rhythmic guitar. I grew close to the group. I am not a rock fan in itself, but my rock music is part of my life with my young people, and I will continue with it. I play about 4-5 concerts a year. Last year, I played “Smoke on the Water” with Deep Purple. You’ll find it on YouTube! You credit the Rolling Stones as a musical influence. What do you think you and Mick Jagger have in common? Are there other musicians who have had a simlar impact? Mick Jagger and I: we have in common the love for good, tough music. For rock musicians who have influenced me, it was Led Zeppelin, ZZ-Top and Jethro Tull; for classical flute, it has been James Galway. How did you enjoy your first visit to Portsmouth Abbey? What were your impressions of the School community? My first visit to Portsmouth Abbey was a great experience. I was very much impressed by the good and serene spirit among the students. I appreciated especially that the awards were given not only for academic achievements, but included also qualifications of character such as leadership, courtesy, courage, dependability, dedication and selflessness. I also loved the liturgy and generous hospitality of my confreres in the monastery. I will not forget my visit!


201073.P.indd 15


7/28/10 9:54 AM


Newman and the Intellectual Tradition

This year’s June 10-13 Portsmouth Institute conference on Newman and the Intellectual Tradition attracted nearly double the attendance of last year’s inaugural conference on The Catholic William F. Buckley, Jr. More than 200 people registered to attend from 22 states and four foreign countries, including 24 clergy.  Actor and writer Kevin O’Brien wrote the following account of his experience at the Institute in the June 18 issue of the St. Austin Review: “Last weekend I attended and performed at the second annual Portsmouth Institute Conference, at Portsmouth Abbey School near Newport, Rhode Island.  It was a tremendous experience. With over two hundred attendees, I was amazed that this was only the second year that the Portsmouth Institute has sponsored such a thing.   The school is a Catholic co-ed boarding high school, run by a group of Benedictines who celebrate the Ordinary Form of the liturgy with Gregorian chant and who all attended the conference and mingled with the guests, much to our delight.


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“The subject of last year’s conference was ‘The Catholic William F. Buckley,’ and the presentations given then were very entertaining, as you can discover yourself by checking out the inaugural issue of The Portsmouth Review, which features the texts of the speeches and photographs from the 2009 conference. “This year’s conference was on Newman and the Intellectual Tradition. Get this lineup of speakers: Fr. Ian Ker from England, the world’s foremost Newman scholar; Peter Kreeft, the Catholic author and apologist; Deacon Jack Sullivan, whose miraculous healing via Newman’s intercession was the official miracle that led to the upcoming beatification; Fr. George Rutler, EWTN rock-star; Fr. Richard Duffield, of Newman’s Oratory in England, who is serving as Actor for Newman’s cause; Patrick Reilly of the Cardinal Newman Society; Edward Short and Paul Griffiths, Newman scholars; opera singers, musicians, and an Anglican boys’ choir performing some of Newman’s works; oh,


7/29/10 12:40 PM

Boston College professor of philosophy Dr. Peter Kreeft

Choir of the Parish of All Saints, Dorchester, Boston

and me. You see, even though I’m not qualified to mix with the upper echelons of culture and the intelligentsia, I get a free pass because I’m an actor.  I may not be a Newman expert, but I play one on TV. I was honored to perform my one-man show as Blessed Dominic Barberi, the Passionist priest who received John Henry Newman into the Church, and the audiences for my two performances were very enthusiastic. “This conference was a little bit of heaven on earth.  It is what the Church ought to be; it is what the Church really is – a body of people sharing a common faith and the rich intellectual, musical, artistic, and dramatic tradition such a communion of faith produces. “The great thing about the St. Austin Review and what we gripe about and stumble towards at the Inkdesk here is that we are yearning for something that is no chimera, no pipe dream.  The Catholic culture that we seek to revive, the culture that once informed all of the West and that gave us Shakespeare, Dante, cathedrals and hospitals, is something real.  And not just real,

Marc and Kathy DeSisto P’02, ‘05 (from left), Rev. Eugene McKenna, and Kitty and John Rok P’01,‘03,‘04,‘08 at dinner on Friday

Author Edward Short

but alive. It’s not the common culture of the day, the secular parody of culture that is not really a culture at all, except in the sense that it’s a culture grown in a Petri dish, a culture of bacteria, infection and death; it is a culture of health and life that spreads from the Body of Christ and His members; it is the soil for growth, the agri-culture of our souls, the communion, camaraderie and shared search for truth, beauty and goodness.  It is what keeps us all happy, fed, and Christian. “This is what we had at the Portsmouth Institute last week.  This is Christian Culture.” Kevin O’Brien is the founder and artistic director of the Theater of the Word Incorporated, a Catholic theater company which tours the country evangelizing through drama.  Kevin hosts the television series “The Theater of the Word” on EWTN and can also be seen on episodes of EWTN’s “The Apostle of Common Sense” and “The Quest for Shakespeare.” He is also a writer and frequent contributor to The St. Austin Review, an international journal of Catholic culture, literature and ideas. 

Music Director, Troy Quinn

Abbot Caedmon Holmes, O.S.B. with Vincent Millard ‘64


201073.P.indd 17


7/29/10 12:41 PM

Trends in College Admissions – Portsmouth Abbey and Beyond The good news is that we had some wonderful acceptances this year. Abbey students will be attending most of the Ivies as well as a number of other private colleges and universities rated “most selective,” and several top state universities. All students were admitted to one or more colleges, and though they may not all be going to “Top Tier” schools (a term that is being rendered obsolete in this age of specious rankings, aggressive marketing, and mind-numbing increases in applications), they have all chosen schools that will offer them an excellent education and many enriching experiences. How to characterize trends in college admissions this spring? To borrow a phrase from politics, “It’s the economy, stupid!”

by Mary McDonald Director of College Counseling

The current economic situation is wreaking havoc with any models or predictors of how trends might play out. There were hints last year that things would move in this direction, but “this direction” came harder and faster than expected. This year we have seen an increase in colleges making decisions based on student financial need, marked increases in colleges “gapping” need/awards (“gapping” means that a school acknowledges that a student has X amount of need based on the federal government’s formula, but leaves a gap between that need and what they are willing to offer the student; we have seen gaps this year in the tens of thousands of dollars). We are seeing students making their lists based on cost, making decisions about what school to attend based on cost, or both. As many people know, 2009 was supposed to be the peak year for increases in the actual number of students of college-entering age. Unfortunately this statistic raised some false expectations on the part of many parents (read: “I thought it was going to get easier for my son/ daughter to get into a ‘top’ college”). While the number of 18-year-olds is dropping, it is dropping very slightly: more high school graduates are applying to college; the number of colleges students apply to is on the rise, creating confusion as to how many students are actually out


201073.P.indd 18

there; and the number of international students applying to U.S. universities continues to grow. A few colleges did in fact see a decrease in applications, but in most cases it was very slight (1 or 2%), and several of those colleges reported that even with the decrease, this year was the second-highest (after last year) number of applications received. The economic situation, and the uncertainty about how many applicants are genuinely interested in a particular school, made predicting yield (how many students will accept the offer of admission and enroll) more difficult; many, if not most, of the schools Abbey students apply to compensated by placing large numbers of students on their wait list. As has been the case for more or less the last eight to ten years, we continue to see schools very aggressively marketing themselves in an effort to increase the number and quality of applications (and thus increasing the number of students they reject, and thus moving up in the “rankings”). Students receive mail, email, and even phone calls from college admission offices, current students, and alumni, offering them various incentives to apply (waived application fees, quick decisions, and preferential treatment in the process). The Common Application (which, beginning in August, will number over 400 member schools, including all of the Ivies) may, or may not, be contributing to the increased number of applications students are submitting. But it seems certain that the rapid changeover from paper to electronic applications is responsible for at least some of the increase; it is much easier to hit the “send” button than to stuff an envelope, lick the flap, apply a stamp, and address the envelope (who knew we were so underprivileged back in our day!). And not that this is necessarily a bad thing. Students, and Portsmouth Abbey students are no exception, are exploring possibilities away from their comfort zones, looking at schools all over the country and the world. The 101 members of the Class of 2010 submitted 820 applications to 259 colleges and universities in the USA, Canada, and the UK. Final results? Of the 101 students, 99 will be attending 67 colleges and universities in the USA, Canada, and UK. Two, thinking outside of the proverbial box, will be taking a year off before enrolling in college; one will be attending a golf academy, and the other will attend several drama workshops over the next eight or so months.


7/28/10 9:54 AM

g d s s e s y a e s -

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s, e s, d. 0 A,

7 K. al

LIVING WITHIN A RESIDENTIAL COMMUNITY by Meghan Fonts, Director of Admissions arrived four years ago was validated on this day, and I was proud to have been part of their experience.

As I sat at this year’s Commencement ceremonies, I smiled as each member of the Class of 2010 accepted a diploma and then proudly returned to sit among his or her classmates. Moreover, I sat remembering the initial meetings I had with so many of these students during their interviews five or less years ago. I can recall the couch on which they sat during the interview, or the school fair at which we first met; I remember ushering them into the Auditorium for the Closer Look overnight social. Each student wanted to come to the Abbey for personal reasons but, ultimately, they all wanted to experience living and learning among their classmates and teachers.

I share with you a few personal testimonies from our students and leave you perhaps remembering your own experiences at the Abbey. These, and many other stories, add to the fabric of how we in the admissions office speak about our School and its unique culture, and how all of our students make an impact on, and are impacted by, our community. From a creative writing assignment by Kian Kenahan, Class of 2012:

It is the students’ experiences we use to tell the Abbey story. While we often begin by speaking of the core of our Benedictine tradition and its influence in the classroom, student life, and in the daily rhythm of the day ending with prayers in the houses, it is relaying the experiences of our students through stories that makes the Abbey experience come alive. Our Red Key tour guides are specifically told to use this one-onone time not only to show off our beautiful campus but to engage the student and family by explaining, in their own words, why they love the Abbey. One prospective parent commented on the “Live Journals” we post on the Admissions page of the School website, about how much he and his daughter enjoyed reading them monthly and following our students throughout the year. These are real students, real experiences, and real stories.

McField Story

And it was when I was recently speaking with a parent about choosing Portsmouth over another school that I continued to reiterate that the experience a student has at a boarding school is different from that of a day school. The student was very prepared to do well academically at either school, but I could not help emphasizing that the experience would be different. So much is learned by living within a residential community – a unique experience for many high school students. To experience sharing community space in the houses or dining hall, observing faculty, not only as teachers, but parents to their own children, seeing the headmaster sit among adolescent girls doing their homework during study hall, or hearing the church bells ring, signifying the time for the monks to pray – these are a few of the experiences that define Portsmouth, our residential life, and, ultimately, each Abbey student. The boarding school day does not have a beginning or an end like a day school, and all of these experiences happen after the last bell in the classroom building. Whether you are a day or a boarding student, nearly all of your classmates and teachers, as well as the monastic community, reside on Cory’s Lane. Having that true sense of a “24/7 community” makes the student’s experience here that much more meaningful and valuable.

That Third Form Table

It was gratifying to see these 101 students standing before me, congratulating each other on their accomplishments and embracing their classmates as a brothers and sisters. What they set out to achieve when they

“Humanities papers are a ritual in which [James] McField and I procrastinate, stay up late, wake up early, and send each in with about three minutes left. We both have our designated spots: I am on his bed against the window, opened to let the cold air in, but this is only if we know we are going to be up late so we won’t fall asleep. McField is at this desk controlling the music. If we need to work fast, we put on a rap song. If tired, we put on a loud funny song. And if we are almost done, we put on a happy song (usually, “Don’t Worry, be Happy”). We take part in this ritual, not to look at each other’s paper or notes, but to stay on task, and to know someone else is in the same position to get the job done.” From an article in The Beacon, by Fletcher Bonin, Class of 2013: “As usual, I walk into the prestigious Stillman Dining Hall today to see the same thing that I see every day. Around one table, the entire freshman class has attempted to sit together – all 69 of us. The same thing happened yesterday, and the same thing will happen again tomorrow. Though this feat is physically impossible, our Third Form brains seem to think that we can always squeeze just one more person in next to us.” From The Beacon, by Henry Harries, Class of 2010: Retrospective “I cannot believe it is over. Time has literally flown by. It does not feel like very long ago that I came in as a new sophomore, adjusting myself into a new school. It is only now that I sit back and think about my time here. Portsmouth Abbey has facilitated an environment for every one of us to develop life-long friendships. When I first arrived at the Abbey, I did not know where I fit in. So I started to meet all the different people in my grade, getting to know a wide variety of people. In the two years since then, Frank [Pagliaro] and Quent [Dickmann] have become like brothers to me. They helped shape my Abbey experience. Because of the Rome trip, I found my two closest friends for the rest of my life. The Abbey gave me a place to live with my best friends for three years and cultivate the closest bonds I have.”


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7/28/10 9:55 AM

Fine Young

by Dr. Michael Bonin So prep school has this image, right? Carelessly graceful boys in blue blazers. Well-groomed parents tailgating from serried ranks of Land Rovers at the playing fields, murmuring “Well played!” to kilted Brooke or Bitsy as the team runs by. Ralph Lauren turns what he finds in old Exeter yearbooks into riches beyond the dreams of avarice. The heroin-chic designer-dishabille of the preps in Gossip Girls is just a hip variation on the theme, a decadent cool to rival Mick Jagger or Kate Moss. What’s more, that exclusive-school style works, doesn’t it? Why else does every prep school put out those glossy viewbooks and tony, high-production admission videos? Rolling lawns, mellow stone buildings, equestriennes, oaken halls, skeet shoots – are you putting your kid in high school or sending him to Balmoral Castle to hang with William and Harry? Flip through this issue of the Bulletin – or is it Gourmet? Condé Nast Traveler? For here are gastro-frills by and for school-crest sybarites. A Napa boutique vineyard, its cult-cabernet dubbed (what else?) “Veritas.” Or Atlantic salmon hand-raised as pets by Hebridean lassies, then smoked over seasoned Mayalasian teakwood to make the Lox of the Gods. Clearly, boarding school is posh. Let’s get real. “Boarding” comes from an actual wooden board, a rough plank table once set out with food for pay. The original “boarders” were brutish medieval farmhands hunched over trenchers of meat pie, or Bill the Butcher’s gang chugging ale in a Lower East Side oyster-house. My despairing mother, with her touching belief in manners, would deplore my “boarding-house reach” when her feral child would lunge across the table, all but lying full-length, to reach the mashed potatoes. So remember, amidst this issue’s evocative images of vichyssoise and limited-release extra-extra vestal virgin olive oil, that Portsmouth Abbey is a Boarding School, not a Dining School. Napkin rings and sterling consommé spoons? No, Queequeg’s savage meals at the Spouter Inn, grappling distant beefsteaks toward him with his harpoon. Who boards – that is, who feeds, lays out the fodder for – 350 ravenous teenagers? The Catholic Church has long sanctified its martyrs, so remember Saint Bob of Portsmouth in your prayers. Bob Cicerone has for ten long years overseen the Abbey kitchen, staff, larders and scullery. Thrice


201073.P.indd 20

daily, a vast swarm of adolescent locusts descend upon him, their mandibles clicking deafeningly as they approach like a Biblical sandstorm from the dorms and gyms. Yet in conversation Bob remains a coherent, even genial man, without any evident facial tics. His eyes do not start from their sockets, nor is his hair pulled out in tufts from his head. He professes to like his job, and claims the entire Dining Hall staff does, too. Would you? Here, try it out. Arrive no later than 5:30 AM. Breakfast starts soon, so fire up that grill, the size of a ping-pong table. Bacon and eggs for 200; move your spatula. Lunch will be much busier, 480 hungry people. Better make some chowder, too. In 80-gallon kettles. Stir it with a canoe paddle. Some teams will be leaving early for away games. Fill a pickup bed with box lunches, stacked like cordwood. Don’t forget Morning Tuck though, over in the Student Center, where a boy will think nothing of heading back to class with a stack of twelve chocolate chip cookies, each the size of a hubcap, and a quart or two of milk to wash them down. So fling cookie sheets into the oven like you were shoveling coal on a steamboat. And keep heaving those five-gallon plastic tanks of milk – called, fittingly, “lugs” – into the coolers as the empties implode, sucked dry. You’re not in “the food service industry,” you’re in the Forest Service, desperately trying to scrape a 100-yard firebreak ahead of a giant brushfire. Mop like the Sorcerer’s Apprentice once lunch ends. Don’t relax. Dinner time’s coming. I have two teen-aged boys myself, and I know what it takes to feed them. They eat burgers the way a dragon eats people. We watch our fingers when we put a platter down in front of them: would you reach through the bars of a tiger cage? So how about burgers for an All-School Cookout? Let’s see, 5:30, coming right from practice, four lacrosse teams, four tennis teams, two baseball and one softball team, sailors, distance runners, discus throwers, the cast and crew of West Side Story . . . . All of them ravenous. After he discovered his famous theorem, Pythagoras sacrificed 100 oxen – a hecatomb – to Apollo. Now, oxen everywhere tremble when anyone has a new idea – and when Portsmouth Abbey fires up its barbecues. The scene is primeval, calling to mind the furnaces of Moloch. Smoke shrouds the campus as huge, dim figures shamble away from the yawn-


7/29/10 12:44 PM


ing firepits, each dragging a haunch of meat across the grass.

Who wants dessert? Did you know ice cream comes in 55-gallon drums, like aviation gas? Breakfast. Lunch. Dinner. 900 meals a day. 7,000 meals a week. 203,467 meals last year. Some boarding schools, in cringing surrender to the insatiable teen appetite, have even defaulted to a system called “continuous feeding,” which has an appropriately stockyard or agri-business sound to it. Chicken wraps, pizza, drinking troughs of Odwalla Mango Tango, silos of Sun Chips and Powerbars are available at all times. The quaint custom of a lunch or dinner hour is replaced by ceaseless student grazing, like the endless herds of buffalo which once roamed the Great Plains. So, is the school catering business for you? Sodexo is accepting applications. If you ask me, the Monastery should guarantee Bob and his staff bodily assumption to Heaven. (Abbot Caedmon has that power, doesn’t he? He just sends a form to the Vatican in Latin or something.) They’re all saints, not just Bob. A litany: Ryan, Anne, Justin, Robert, Tom, Diane. Every server, scraper, cook and bottlewasher. How about Patrick? He turns those lights on long before dawn, starts the outboard engine they use to mix pancake batter. Ron, the baker, arrives just a little later. Believe me, without his cookies Portsmouth Abbey would shut down, the Admissions Office boarded up, its door swinging in the wind as tumbleweeds roll across the Manor House road. Or Will, whose perilous job is to deliver those cookies to Tuck, his shy smile undoubtedly a defense mechanism – if he should stumble while holding that tray they’ll be on him in a second, the limping wildebeest pulled down by the hyena pack. Will is safe as long as Betty’s there. Betty is 87, knows every student’s name, was Chief Gunnery Sergeant Betty in another life, and presides over the Tuck Shop with a voice that can tear asphalt shingles off a roof. Maureen and Jane, back at the lunch service, know which kid needs cheering up and what to do whenever the toaster is on fire. Gaetano secretly tips off faculty families when his barbecued ribs are coming up

on the menu. Leland has a big grin and a “How’s it going?” for everyone unloading a tray at the dishes window. Stephanie, a chef from the Johnson and Wales program, can slap spaghetti with meatballs and red sauce on five hundred plates with one hand (Pasta Night may be the students’ favorite meal) while preparing Coquilles Saint-Jacques for a candlelit trustees’ dinner with the other. Billy started as a dishwasher in the Abbey kitchen at fifteen. Eighteen years later, he and Bob run the entire show. It takes two, you know – one to order cargo holds of booze for the alumni receptions, and one to lock it up as soon as it arrives. Students are wicked, unsleeping, and ingenious. Ever notice those Rhode Island State Troopers enjoying dinner at the corner table of the Dining Hall, their SIG Sauer .357 pistols holstered but in plain view? You could call it Benedictine hospitality. You could also call them the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board. Yes, beatification for the entire kitchen crew is not too much to ask. Besides, the Monastery owes the Dining Hall staff. Otherwise, who knows what stories just might get out? Stories, for instance, about monks’ private stashes of goodies: Abba-Zaba bars, brownies, jars of Skippy Super Chunk Peanut Butter, who knew? Whispered questions after hours, “I don’t suppose you have some ice cream anywhere, do you?” One monk was known to carry pancakes in his pockets, and randomly offer them to students. And who saw another monk slip half a ham into a knapsack, zip it up, and then glide solemnly out of the kitchen back to the cloister? Saint Benedict and the Desert Fathers would not approve. But they would bless the kitchen staff. For as the Catechism tells us, “feeding the hungry” is one of the corporal works of mercy. My favorite English professor used to cry out, mid-lecture, “The old A-R problem!” He meant that Appearance and Reality don’t always match up. There’s the Viewbook School, which is also the Capital Campaign School and the Admission Video School. But let’s not forget – nay, let us honor – the Reality School. That’s where the 2 AM houseparent on duty works. The Infirmary nurse during the H1N1 epidemic. The custodian for the boys’ dorm bathroom. The coach driving a team minibus back from Vermont in a sleet storm. And a kitchen crew making sure, when that team pulls in so late, that the lights are on in the Stillman Dining Hall, and there’s a hot meal waiting.


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So, you ask how did I come to take the fork leading to viticulture as my lifelong career? First, it started under a palm tree in Italy on leave from the Army; I sat in the sun one day with a glass of wine and concluded this was a moment of heaven. After I came home from the Army, wine became a daily enjoyment. Second, my wife, whom I had first met almost the very day I bought the mountain land, turned out to have great farming background and along with it wonderful cooking experience and enthusiasm. She was obviously the ideal mate for a career in viticulture. And so off we went, developing our vineyards and then winery, growing along with our kids, and taking pride and pleasure in presenting a product of the earth that we believe has been enjoyed by many of our brethren on this earth. What did I learn from my experience in my five years at Portsmouth? I must preface my answer by noting that I do not know much for sure about many things. But at Portsmouth I learned the importance of seeking truth with open mind and with tenacity, balance, integrity and with respect for others.

Fred Fisher ‘50 Vintner, Fisher Vineyards Santa Rosa, California Fred and his wife, Juelle, started Fisher Vineyards in 1973. Fisher Vineyards, with 75 planted acres, grows and produces wines from both its Napa Valley Estate and Spring Mountain Estate (Sonoma County). Today, Fred and Juelle’s three children, Whitney, Robert and Cameron, have joined Fisher Vineyards and are producing a second generation of highly acclaimed wines. The missions of Fisher Vineyards is to grow and produce wines of consistent, world-class quality, using sustainable and organic viticulture processes, that express their unique mountain or valley heritage in the truest sense of terroir. According to Fred, “We are small in size but great in scope, with both mountain and valley estate vineyards. Our wines reflect the great care we have given these vineyards; those who drink the wines and those who write about the wines sing their praise, and we are grateful.”

Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth to the present. I started from Portsmouth Priory (“prior” to the Abbey) in June, 1950, happy with my college acceptance and no worries about my life ahead. But just two weeks later the Korean War started and accelerated for the next several years. Luckily, I was allowed to graduate from college and grad school, then I had to join the Army for three years and served literally around the world, then back to Detroit and an automobile assembly line. Next was the “Left Coast” and defense manufacturing, followed by five great years of management consulting, and then international container leasing as “Vice-President - Pacific” (I wish it had been). Finally, two almost simultaneous events: first, an opportunity to purchase mountain land between Napa and Sonoma with assurance from experts of the day that it would produce the finest wine grapes, and secondly, and not secondarily, I met my wife (Juelle Lamb Fisher).

The best part of my day in the vineyards and the winery comes when I see achievements of our three offspring, who amazingly and literally have come back to oversee the making of our wines from first bud to finished blend, all with the greatest respect and care for the earth. And of course I thrill to look out over our vineyards and to realize how far we all together have come. I must also note how often we are visited by guests from around the world who are thrilled by what we enthusiastically can offer to them in vista, wine and food, and who on their side offer to us their wonderful independent views of their world. As for the three most important people I would invite to the winery and vineyard for a delightful meal and wine and their extraordinarily thinking: first and foremost, my Dad, who would not believe what he would see. Secondly and finally, Father Aelred Wall, OSB, who himself came out West after some ten or more years as headmaster of Portsmouth to found the Monastery of Christ in the Desert, in Abiquiu, NM. And one final thought: I have learned in my 77 years that it generally takes three times to get something right. I hope in my life I get two more tries.

Photos: Fred with his family, front (l-r): Rob/Marketing Manager, Juelle/our leader, Whitney/winemaker, in back: Cameron/Marketing, and finally, yours truly. Above, Fred, soil testing in the vineyard; an inside view of the winery PHOTOS COURTESY OF FISHER VINEYARDS


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Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth Abbey to the present. I arrived at Princeton University in September 1956. While I enjoyed Princeton very much, I left after my junior year - that was my “taking the road less traveled by”; I went to the Maryknoll Seminary near Chicago to study philosophy. Then I studied theology at Maryknoll, NY. After my ordination to the priesthood in 1966, I got a M.A. in international communications and journalism at the University of Missouri. I then came to Nairobi, Kenya, and founded the Social Communications Office of the Catholic Bishops Conferences of Eastern Africa (covering eight countries). After turning over the office to local African personnel in 1974, I have been involved in a wide variety of pastoral, communications and education activities while living at different times in Kenya and Tanzania. This has given me the opportunity to travel to 83 countries, including 30 in Africa.

Rev. Joseph Healey ‘56, M.M.

When did you first feel the call to serve others through a religious vocation?

Maryknoll Missionary Priest Nairobi, Kenya

Since my high school days at Portsmouth I had thought and prayed about becoming a Catholic priest, especially a missionary. Rev. Joseph Healey, M.M., graduated from Portsmouth Priory in 1956 where he is cited in his yearbook as “the congenial gentleman from Baltimore” and a devout Orioles fan. Joe (the “Deacon”) was the first man to have been elected to the Student Council for three consecutive years. He then spent three years at Princeton before entering Maryknoll College. Joe received his bachelor of arts degree in philosophy from Maryknoll in 1961, and his bachelor of divinity and master of theology degrees from Maryknoll Seminary in New York, where he was ordained a priest in 1966. He then received a master’s degree in journalism (international communications) at the University of Missouri in 1968. In 1968, Fr. Joe was assigned to the Maryknoll Africa Region. He returned to the USA and received a master’s degree in Christian Spirituality from Creighton University in 1981. He has spent some 40 years with the Maryknolls, mostly in Tanzania and Kenya, in a number of capacities. He has written extensively on Small Christian Communities, African proverbs and sayings, communications, enculturation and mission. His books include A Fifth Gospel: The Experience of Black Christian Values (Orbis Books, 1981); Kuishi lnjili ­Living the Gospel (Benedictine Publications, 1982); What Language Does God Speak: African Stories About Christmas and Easter (St. Paul Publications, 1989); Once Upon a Time in Africa: Stories of Wisdom and Joy (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2004); and African Stories for Preachers and Teachers (Paulines Publications Africa, 2005). Fr. Joe’s brothers, John ‘54 and Tom ‘60, attended Portsmouth, as did stepbrothers Mike ’55 and Barry ’59, and Peter Sheehan.

Did your Portsmouth Abbey experience, or the Benedictine ethos, help form the foundation for your vocation? Yes, my four years at Portsmouth certainly provided the rich soil for my vocation to grow. First, I thought about the Benedictines. I liked the monks at Portsmouth. But I couldn’t sing a note. So imagining those long years of faking my way through Gregorian Chant (or just remaining silent) was too much to bear. In fact, at the mandatory try-out for our high school glee club, the Austrian-born director asked me (as well as everyone else) to sing the scales. After I murdered the “Do-Re-Mi,” he shouted, “Out, Out, Out” in his thick accent. I knew my days as a singer were quickly over. Then I visited the Franciscans on 33rd Street in New York City. The guest master friar was very friendly. But when I explained that I wanted to be a missionary and go overseas, he paused and slowly said, “Well, we Franciscans work in many different kinds of apostolate, so we can’t promise you would go overseas - at least not right away.” So it was clearly the Maryknoll Society. Here was a young missionary society that felt so Catholic and so focused on overseas missionary ministry.

Please walk us through your typical day. During the past 50 years, I have spent almost 40 as a missionary in East Africa. Presently I am the Moderator of the “African Proverbs, Sayings and Stories” Website ( and


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the Small Christian Communities Global Collaborative Website ( I also teach a course on “Small Christian Communities as a New Model of Church in Africa Today” at Hekima College (Jesuits) and Tangaza College, which are both constitute colleges of the Catholic University of Eastern Africa in Nairobi, Kenya. About half of my time is devoted to research and writing on African culture, especially African oral literature such as African proverbs, sayings, riddles, stories, fables, plays and songs and their relationship to inculturation and evangelization.

What is your favorite part of your ministry? Would you share a meaningful story about your ministry in Africa? The favorite part of my ministry is relating closely to the African people and sharing the meaning of the Christian life with them. One day Bishop Christopher Mwoleka came to our house in Nyabihanga Village in Rulenge, Tanzania, on an unexpected visit. My good friend, Athanasius, and I hurriedly prepared tea for the villagers who came to greet the bishop. We started with two full pots, but then several other visitors came and soon we had finished all the tea. I wondered what I would do if another person came. Just then one of our neighbors arrived to say hello. As I started to apologize for not having any more tea, Athanasius spontaneously picked up his own cup of tea and politely handed it to the visitor. It was a simple gesture of sharing, but for me a profound act of love and beauty. By his example Athanasius had evangelized me.

What kind of impact have you seen as a result of your mission? According to recent economic statistics, Tanzania is the thirdpoorest country in the world after Mozambique and Ethiopia. AIDS, famine, refugees, malaria, poverty, low economy, corruption, poor roads; you name it, Tanzania has got it. But we missionaries feel called to accompany the local people in all this and, where we can, try to make a small difference. Please don’t get the idea that all of Africa is grim and desperate. The former president of Tanzania Julius Nyerere once said, “We have many problems but we remain cheerful.” In fact Africans are some of the happiest, most joyful people that I have ever met - even in the midst of their material poverty. In reflecting on the missionary side of my life in Tanzania and Kenya, I recall the passage in St. Luke’s Gospel when Jesus said to his disciples: “I must proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God to the other cities also; for I was sent for this purpose.” For me this means going to the other cities in Tanzania, too, like Musoma and Dar es Salaam and then on to Nairobi, Ke-

nya where I presently live. Mission means sharing a journey with the African people.

What is the most precious gift you have received from the people to whom you minister? I feel that God’s greatest missionary gift to me has been a deep love for the African people. They are my brothers and sisters. In turn, the African people have given me much love and friendship. I am deeply thankful for this precious gift and grace.

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to join you for a meal and conversation, who would they be? First, in a unique category all by himself, is Jesus Christ. We are called to be his disciples and evangelizers. A meal and conversation with Christ would be the center and heart of everything. Second, St. Therese of Lisieux, who is the Patroness of Mission and who has been an inspiration to me throughout my missionary priesthood. As a woman and a writer she would bring a fascinating perspective to our conversation. Third, I want to go outside the box and choose a living person whom I have never met. Over the years when I have been asked who I would like to be in my fantasy life I always answer: “The quarterback of the Notre Dame football team in South Bend, Indiana.” So the third personality is the new coach of the Notre Dame Team - Brian Kelly. I would ask him what is his strategy for bringing Notre Dame back to its former greatness and finish No.1 in the country. Yes, and it would be an African meal!

Top: Fr. Joe Healey ‘56 visited campus in September of 2006 and spoke to the School community about his missionary work in Africa, including his efforts to support fair trade products. Left: One of Fr. Joe’s books of collected African folk tales.


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Geoffrey Bloomingdale ’67 Condor Ridge Ranch Grower of Organic Cherimoyas and Exotic Fruit Santa Barbara, California Geoff Bloomingdale is owner of Condor Ridge Ranch, growers of Calimoya™ brand cherimoyas and other exotic fruit, located in the Santa Barbara foothills of the Santa Ynez mountain range in Southern California.

Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth Abbey to the present. After graduating from Portsmouth, I went to Claremont McKenna College. I met my wife of 38 years there. We moved to Los Angeles, and after four years as a stockbroker at Drexel Burnham, I realized  I wanted to work outside.  In 1974 we found a  120-acre property in Goleta, Cal., and planted  50 acres of avocados and 10 of lemons. Today, after making every mistake in the book and surviving two fires, two floods, an earthquake and a wind storm that literally blew some of the lemon trees out of the ground, we have 30 acres of avocados and three acres of cherimoya. This week (late June) starts cherimoya pollination season... once the flowers on the cherimoyas come out, the cherimoya flowers are hand pollinated. We do this every afternoon for six to eight weeks. The flowers are male in the morning and female in the afternoon! The fruit can grow as large as 2 pounds and tastes like a combination of a mango, papaya and

pear. The cherimoya market is small, and most of the fruit is sold to the Asian market, and it has a short – one week – shelf life. Our greatest concern is the sustainability of the unique environment that produces such remarkable fruit. We use neither pesticides nor herbicides, and to ensure good crops season after season we care for each tree using special organic nutrients, pruning techniques and hand-pollination procedures, always innovating to improve our production and the quality of the land. Following the seasons as I do in this business, I’ve developed a deep respect for nature. I don’t believe this perfect earth, where every flower and fruit has its four weeks to shine and be the star, could have happened by accident.   I know I chose the right life for my family.

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to the ranch for a meal and conversation, who would they be, and why? William Shakespeare – “All the world’s a stage” (from As You Like It 2.7). This pretty much sums life up as well as anyone ever did.... Michelangelo – “The true work of art is but a shadow of the divine perfection.” How fun to learn from the master!! Mark Twain – “Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities. Truth isn’t.”


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Nion McEvoy ‘70 McEvoy Ranch, Organic Olive Growers Petaluma, California

Nion McEvoy and his mother, Nan Tucker McEvoy, are founders and owners of McEvoy Ranch, the largest producer of organic estategrown olive oil in the nation. The ranch consists of 18,000 organically farmed trees and a state-of-the-art Rapanelli mill, the only one of its kind in the United States, and sits on 550 acres in the rolling hills west of Petaluma in Northern California. Once a dairy farm, it has now been reincarnated as an organic olive tree orchard. A large organic garden covers well over two acres, supplying seasonal produce for ranch staff and for the McEvoy family. In addition, Nion is chairman and CEO of Chronicle Books LLC, an independent publishing company based in San Francisco, California. Chronicle Books is known for its excellence in design and production and the strong popular appeal of its titles, including such best-sellers as The Beatles Anthology, The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook, and Top Chef: The Quickfire Cookbook. Nion joined Chronicle Books in 1986, and served as the Editor-inChief of the adult trade division until the acquisition of the company by the McEvoy Group in February 2000. He worked previously in the business affairs departments of the William Morris Agency in Beverly Hills and of Wescom Productions, and is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Cruz and Hastings College of the Law. He currently serves on the boards of SFJAZZ, SFMOMA, and the UC Santa Cruz Foundation. He has two sons and a daughter, and plays drums in the elusive rock band Rough Draft.

 ow did your Portsmouth Abbey education, and specifically H its Benedictine foundation, affect your career choices? I am both a rancher and a publisher. Portsmouth helped me develop a love for language, both through my rigorous French, English and Latin courses, and from hearing the monks chant their offices in Latin. My Art and Civilization course with Father Hilary had a huge influence on me and still helps me make decisions about art and design in publishing. And the beauty of the Abbey grounds helped me develop an appreciation of land.

Do you see farming/growing food as an extension of the Benedictine way of life (ora et labora)? I do. The value of the payer and work united are abundantly clear on a farm, where God’s hands and ours are always joined. Man proposes on a farm, and God disposes; but then again, God proposes – through soil, climate, weather and innumerable other factors – and man disposes, too.

What is the best part of your day on the ranch? Each day there is a blessing, from the quiet early hours of the morning, through the work and comradeship of the day, to coming back in the late afternoon – though I especially like lunch.

What kind of impact on others have you seen as a result of your work? The Ranch was originally my mother’s idea. She envisioned a place in the country where her grandchildren could cavort. Then zoning laws drove her to consider agriculture. Not inter-


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ested in growing wine, which even in the early nineties she felt was overdone in California, she thought of the olive. I introduced her to one of our authors, Maggie Klein (The Feast of the Olive), who introduced her to Maurizio Castelli, olive guru. American experts told us we couldn’t grow olives on our Marin County soil. Maurizio knew we could, and soon we were making a true Tuscan-style olive oil from six varietals. The oil has since been recognized by Consumer Reports and the recent Saveur magazine, among other publications. We pioneered a new style of high-end, extra-virgin organic olive oil in Northern California, helping to jump start a new industry in the region. We have further contributed by selling trees, offering pressing services and a community press day to smaller growers, and opening a retail store in the historic San Francisco Ferry Building, now dedicated to regional foods.

Sophia Loren, because she too would enjoy the food, and, well, because I have a great photo of her and my father sitting together and he seems exceptionally happy about it. Cole Porter, songwriter and lyricist extraordinaire, who also seems like he would be a good luncheon companion. By the way, we offer tours, and I hope you’ll come visit!

What is the most important gift you have received as a result your labors? The joy of introducing my children, my friends and others to fine olive oil, which is both healthful and delicious, and the pleasure of taking part in the extraordinary food community of Northern California at an exciting and important time.

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to the ranch for a meal and conversation, who would they be, and why? Dante Alighieri, because I think he would enjoy the food, have lots of interesting gossip about his era, and have some informed prior experience of Paradise.


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Donald A. Macdonald, MD ‘73

Interviewed by Tom Anderson ‘73 Dr. Donald Macdonald’s interest in medicine was developed while a student at the Abbey and being inspired by his teachers, Rev. Dom Leo Van Winkle, Rev. Dom Andrew Jenks and Dr. Donal O’Brien. After graduating from the Abbey and Williams College, he attended Dartmouth Medical School and completed his residency in ophthalmology at the Manhattan Eye, Ear & Throat Infirmary and his fellowship in Oculoplastic Surgery at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary. He returned to the New Jersey shore where he was born and raised and where he lives today with his wife, Lore, having raised their four children Donald, Ali ‘02, Meg ‘06 and Ian ‘08. Don and Lore have dedicated themselves to a life of stewardship in keeping with the Benedictine tradition. In March 2007, Don and a few colleagues formed a non-profit organization, Right to Sight and Health ( ), which provides medical and surgical eye care to indigenous populations who suffer due to extreme poverty and/or a total lack of available healthcare in areas where they live. Right to Sight and Health is a non-religious organization, and they treat people in need regardless of their nationality, race, ethnicity and religion. This past March, Don returned from a two-week mission in Kedougou, Senegal, the organization’s eleventh such mission since 2007, where he and his team of surgeons, nurses and allied health workers and volunteers performed cataract, trachoma and pterygium surgeries, distributed 600 pairs of eyeglasses, trained the local ophthalmic nurse, and donated a laptop computer and 50 lbs. of medical and surgical supplies to a local hospital. They also donated enough money to build a new nurses’ quarters. The services he and his team provide free of charge combat blindness, one of the leading causes of infirmity in countries such as Senegal, Ghana, Cambodia, Nicaragua and the Philippines. This summer Don is planning to be in Ghana working with the Presbyterian Church in two remote locations. In a recent conversation with Don, we had a chance to explore some of the reasons why he undertakes these missions:


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TA - Where did the idea come from that motivated you to start the Right to Sight and Health missions? DM - Every year local doctors have been doing medical missions in South America and the Philippines. I always wanted to go, but did not want to leave behind my young children. It was not possible until two doctors, Dr. Tracey Lewis and Dr. Judith Simon, joined my practice. They had been to Chiopas in Mexico and Africa several times. After several missions, Dr. Simon actually was organizing and running her own missions and it was she who made the non-profit a reality. I wanted my daughter, Meg, to go into medicine, so I asked her to go with me to Nicaragua. Well, she is going into psychology, so I failed to get any of my children to follow me into eye care. But I got hooked on giving the gift of vision to so many blind people. Here was something very powerful that I myself could do to help people in a big way. Other types of medical care in the Third World are difficult or impossible, since medications are not readily available. But cataract surgery could actually restore vision, and there are a multitude of people completely blind from this condition. It is the largest treatable cause of blindness in the world.

Don in Ghana with Reverend Ernest, Reverend George, and Bishop Emmanuel at a Presbyterian health clinic in June of 2010

TA - What kind of a difference has these missions made in these patients and their families’ lives? DM - When we were in Senegal in March, a 12-year-old girl came in totally blind. After we did both cataract surgeries, she could see. You can only imagine how this will change her life. This is true for countless other people who cannot walk anywhere and so they are confined to their homes. A 16-year-old


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Don in Senegal with the Muslims in March

ing day and night in temperatures over 100° F, even on weekends. But it is so exciting that you eat voraciously, drink water all the time and barely stop to rest. We always have a team that seems to work well together, and it is a great life experience for the doctors, nurses, students, and Peace Corp volunteers. We also teach local doctors our small-incision, Third World cataract surgery techniques so that they may go out and improve their outcomes. This is just as gratifying as giving the gift of vision.

TA - Finally, what wisdom would you impart to our fellow alums and current students on the importance of volunteerism to their communities? DM - Often it seems that so much of the community service

came in one evening after getting poked in the eye. We did his traumatic cataract and saved him from losing his vision forever. There is no eye care available for these people.

TA - How did your experience at Portsmouth play/not play a role in establishing Right to Sight and Health missions and serving the needs of those less fortunate? DM - I don’t know if I can say that Portsmouth played a specific role, except to say that Portsmouth shaped me more then any other experience I ever had. Only at Portsmouth did I learn about right and wrong and living an upstanding, honest life. I wish all medical students went to a place like Portsmouth and maybe there wouldn’t be such a health care crisis!

TA - What sense of accomplishment or personal gratification do you derive from working on these missions? DM - It is hard to describe the great gratification I get from our work. Everybody thinks you are on some safari, but you are work-

Don examines a blind woman in preparation for surgery.

our children are encouraged to do is not followed up in our adult life. If we all took just a little bit of time out every year to help others in need, the world would be a better place. Instead of that vacation to some exotic place, a week or two dedicated to improving the life of our fellow humans would go a long way to improving the world.  I am amazed how much work there is to do. It is never ending. I encourage everyone I see to contribute their time and money to causes such as ours. Catholic Medical Mission Board (CMMB) is another organization that is doing much to improve the world. And there are many more like these that do so much for others. Don and his team plan just completed a mission to Assin Praso/ Adobue, Ghana, in June-July 2010, and plan future missions to Tambacounda, Senegal, in January, 2011, and Cameroon in 2011. To learn more about the missions and how you might help, please visit Right to Sight and Health at


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Michael T. Panciera, Ph.D. ‘73

Do you see your efforts to preserve/protect natural resources as a distinctly Benedictine value (related to the Benedictine principal of stewardship)?

Professor Berea College, Berea, Kentucky

I was not conscious of the influence, but I believe it had a role. Let me explain. Many of our Agriculture and Natural Resource graduates from Berea College go into public service rather than to industry. They are not specifically encouraged to make these choices, but Berea College encourages and promotes service to others and I think most of our students have incorporated it into their own values. In my case, I think stewardship was part of my family values and it was reinforced in daily life at Portsmouth. mikepanciera.asp

Michael holds the Clarence M. Clark Chair of Mountain Agriculture at Berea College. He is also Associate Professor of Agriculture and Natural Resources and Coordinator of Farms Coordinator of Advising.

Did your Portsmouth Abbey experience or the Benedictine ethos form the foundation for your current career?

Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth Abbey to the present.

My experience at Portsmouth has been important in my career and the influence of that experience is evident in my teaching today. For education to be effective, it should be engaging, have high expectations, and be administered patiently. The faculty at Portsmouth had tremendous expertise and enthusiasm for their teaching which, in my view, is the key to engagement. Expectations were high and I remember working very hard during my time at Portsmouth. All that hard work yielded results almost immediately because I found that my first year at McGill was far easier than my last year at Portsmouth. My capacity to work hard academically was developed at Portsmouth and it has been important throughout my career. Most students rise to meet expectations; I know that I did and I try to take the same approach with my students at Berea College. I think if you surveyed my students today, you would find that my teaching mirrors that which I experienced at Portsmouth.

I started out at McGill University and was unsure about whether to major in English or the sciences. I concluded that my interest in science combined with my desire for practical knowledge could best be addressed by studying agriculture. I transferred to the University of Guelph in Ontario. I finished my BS and decided to continue with an MS (my favorite professor had funding for a grad student). I went on to a Ph.D. at Penn State, working with a professor I admired. From there it was on to a post-doctorate at the University of Wisconsin Madison ’82-‘85, a temporary appointment at Ohio State ’85-‘88, a position at the University of Alaska ’88-‘98, and finally here to Berea College’98to-present. From ’01-’06, I served as Department Chair and Director of Farms. In 2006, I won the Advising Award at Berea and then, in 2008, I was asked to take on a half-time position as Coordinator of Academic Advising for the College.

What is your favorite part of your work day? Without question, the most enjoyable aspect of my work is helping students. It may be helping them to understand a concept in Plant Science or helping them to set and achieve their own goals. As I have gotten older my understanding of teaching has broadened and I try to focus on helping individual students in whatever way I can. I sometimes joke that I have helped a couple of students find religion…they switched their

Agriculture attracted me because it was an applied science. I enjoy solving practical problems and the focus on feeding people was more interesting to me than other applied sciences. My first real experience teaching was as a teaching assistant at the University of Guelph. I found that I greatly enjoyed that part of my work. Graduate school, particularly at R1 universities, tends to push graduate students toward research as the way to make an impact on the world. I did that for a while and then, around 1994-5, I found that I was constantly looking for excuses to get into the classroom. As I reflected on my actions I realized that, while I could continue to be productive in research, I could multiply the effect I was having by teaching, inspiring, and motivating students.

Photograph: Jason Houston/

When did you first feel the call to education? Why agricultural studies?


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Min Lee ‘03 and Allie (DeSisto) Micheletti ‘05 collect the first harvest from the Portsmouth Abbey Community Garden,

major from agriculture to religion after taking my plant science course! Usually I manage to help students find their way in less dramatic fashion, but I place a high priority on helping them find out where they can be engaged, productive, and happy. When you enjoy your work, all aspects of life are better.

Spring 2009.

Are you involved with any kind of hands-on agricultural or environmental work outside of the classroom? My involvements outside the College program are limited, primarily because there is not much time left over! I have worked with University of Kentucky personnel to put on educational programs for farmers. I have done quite a bit of work outside the normal classroom context here. Berea College is one of a handful of labor colleges in the USA. All of our students work and none of them pay tuition. Most of the Agriculture and Natural Resources students work on the College Farm. We have livestock (beef cattle, hogs, goats), field crops (corn, soybeans, wheat, hay), and horticultural crops (fruit, vegetables, shitake mushrooms) on a 600-acre farm. In addition to the manual labor, our students participate in the management of the farm. All of the faculty in our department are involved with the operation of the farm. In addition, I usually assign my classes projects that will improve the operation of the farm. Over the years they have developed record systems, designed pasture programs for livestock, and designed grass waterways to prevent flooding and erosion.

The Abbey Kitchen Garden, as one

might expect, provides produce for the School dining hall. However, the Abbey garden in not a typical household garden with a few tomato and squash plants. Rather, it is a half-acre plot of land that grows everything from corn and peas to cabbage and pumpkins. During the summer and fall, we try to provide a large portion of the vegetables

What kind of impact have you seen as a result of your work?

that the dining hall uses. The excess is given to

I have seen competent, confident young people head into the work world and achieve their goals in many different areas, such as, graduate school, veterinary school, farming, cooperative extension, and even nursing.

the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Community Center in Newport and, in turn, given to those who might need it.

This is the second year of the garden,

What is the most precious gift you have received from the people you teach and advise?

and we’re off to a great start. We’ve had and con-

Teachers don’t get an overabundance of direct, positive feedback. We get our reward primarily through the success of our students. Occasionally we get students who call for advice before making a big decision or alumni who tell you that your course, or your patience, or your confidence in them changed their lives. That is what it is all about.

nity; faculty, staff, students, and monks have all

tinue to have help from the entire School commugrabbed shovels and hoes at one point or another to help with planting, weeding, and harvesting. We developed the idea for the garden last spring, and Brother Joseph and Bob Cicerone were instrumental in getting the idea off the ground –or,

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) for a meal and conversation, who would they be, and why?

rather, in the ground. With the backdrop of the

Mark Twain – for his incomparable humor and sensitivity to injustice.

den seemed right at home. This is not the first

Stan Rogers – because I admire his ability to capture the lives, hopes, and dreams of others in song and I wonder if that ability can be learned or if it is only God-given. Roderick Haig-Brown – Anyone who could become a judge and chancellor of a university (Univ. of British Columbia) without a college education has to be a remarkable person, but his eloquence as a writer and his appreciation of nature in general, and fly fishing in particular, seal the deal.

Wind Turbine and Solar House, the Abbey gargarden at the Abbey; in fact, Father Damian has explained that the School once had not only a garden, but sheep as well. Who knows, perhaps that is the next step for us as well! Allie DeSisto Micheletti ‘05 June 2010


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Photograph by Jason Houston/

alumni spotlight   B

Dominic Palumbo ‘74 Moon In The Pond Farm, Organic Farming Sheffield, Massachusetts

Dom is owner of Moon In The Pond, a small farm in the southern Berkshire hills of Sheffield, Massachusetts. Raising food naturally and sharing the experience has been a strong and growing commitment throughout the farm’s history. Established in 1991, Moon In The Pond maintains a strong focus on the elegant integration of history (raising heritage breed livestock and heirloom vegetables, using select traditional farming methods) and contemporary “technology.” Dom and his crew raise heritage breed animals for meat (nearly ten thousand pounds annually), a variety of livestock and poultry, and heirloom vegetables, eggs, honey, fruit, and more that they sell locally directly to families, partly through their unique CSA (Community Supported Agriculture program), at the farm, and at local farmers’ markets. As a not-for-profit organization, 100% the proceeds from sales of farm products and services goes to support the farm’s educational mission.

Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth to the present. While pursuing a career in landscaping and creating gardens in New York City, I was looking for an escape from the city. In 1991, I found an abandoned farm in the southwest corner of Massachusetts. I already had an interest in growing things, and now I had a place to do it.

When did you first consider farming as a career? Why heritage breed livestock and heirloom vegetables? I always say I stumbled into my calling. After buying the farm, I acquired a few chickens…then there was a pasture I didn’t want to mow, so I bought some sheep…after 10 years, I was a farmer, not because I set out to be a farmer but because I spent all my time working the farm and I had settled into life. I saw a niche and decided to try to fill it. From my previous experience in horticulture I was familiar with the chemicals used to grow things, so I steered clear. Since I was already interested in organic food, it seemed like the only way to go with the farm. A friend suggested to me that there was a growing population in New York City that wanted organic. So, for eight years, I did just that – sold my organic produce at the Union Square Farm-


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ers’ Market. I continued my landscaping work also, but finally realized that I needed to devote 100% of my time to the farm. So, I moved full-time into farming I started raising animals in the early years at the farm to help maintain the land and to provide meat for home, friends and family. Gradually the animals became a very substantial part of the picture. While at Terra Madre in 2006 (the international conference of small, sustainable food producers held in Turin by Slow Food), I was inspired to participate in the conservation of heirloom vegetables after hearing Vandana Shiva speak about diversity in food crops as a sacred gift of creation and the divine vocation of farmers as stewards of the land.

Did your Portsmouth Abbey education, and specifically its Benedictine foundation, affect your career choices? Do you see farming/sustainable agriculture as an extension of the Benedictine way of life (ora et labora)? Life at Portsmouth and the idea of constant prayer has always moved me. The Benedictine life is exemplified by life on the farm and being close to nature. Everything you do is an acknowledgement of your spirituality, a realization of the connection we have to our planet, to nature and to creation. I am more spiritual than religious, but I see farming and agriculture, and participating in life close to the land, as profoundly spiritual and an active investment in future generations. Growing food is nurturing people, and that act of nurturing, by its nature, is an act of sharing – so that, too, becomes the task. When one considers these tasks, it is clear that we’re looking at creating a respectful culture for future generations.

Do you see your efforts to preserve/protect natural resources as a distinctly Benedictine value? Education by definition is the hope that others will have the benefit of our experience, widening their perspective, deepening their own experience. The greater our awareness of the


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There was something in me that was drawn to the earth, even before I attended Portsmouth. When I was there, I was fascinated by the farm at the Abbey and fantasized about what it would have been like to be at the Abbey when the farm was an integral part of the school day. At the time I thought the Abbey had had the farm because it had the money to do so; now I realize it was not only a basic necessity, but a realization of the Benedictine devotion to prayer, work, creation, God.

What is the best part of your day on the farm? My days on the farm are so varied and full, it’s hard to choose a favorite. But it’s great seeing the thrill of a new idea, a realization, a joy, that I know, come to the face of a student. We take all meals together and pause before eating. Often we thank the people whose work contributed to the meal. Sometimes people mention something cool they discovered on the farm, some help they received from another student, or something they’re excited about. I totally dig that!

What kind of impact have you seen as a result of your work? I began to offer apprenticeships about six or seven years ago to save money on labor. That effort has turned into a dedication to education. All of the farm’s work is now centered on education and advocacy for sustainable agriculture. We run 11 educational programs, including offering field trips to grade schoolers, seasonal internships, tours of the farm, an international exchange and others. But our ‘big’ programs are the year-long apprentice-

ships and the seasonal internships. With three full-year apprentices and as many as four summer interns, Moon In The Pond is providing opportunities for people from all walks of life as well as prospective farmers and future policy makers to experience sustainable farming firsthand. I have received inquiries and applications from around the country and world, and we have had apprentices from California, Florida, Rhode Island, Kentucky, Vermont, Georgia, Washington, Massachusetts and New Jersey, as well as Greece and France, to name a few. Many Moon In The Pond ‘grads’ are now running their own farms and are active in re-establishing agrarianism as a worthwhile and fulfilling life choice and a valuable contribution to our culture.

What is the most important gift you have received as a result of your labors? Working with so many different people I have been graced with many deep, caring and lasting relationships: very simply – love

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to the farm for a meal and conversation, who would they be, and why? Party planning scares me! I’m always afraid I’m forgetting the most obvious and most important guests. I think I’d invite three people who’d, themselves, really shake things up. Yeah, then I’d watch. How about Jesus, General MacArthur and Bill Gates? Speaking of visits—all are welcome on the farm, especially the Portsmouth community. Alums, parents, students and friends are invited to visit or even to participate as interns or volunteers. I guarantee you’ll eat well and fall straight to sleep! Com’on down!

Photograph by Jason Houston/

Photograph by Jason Houston/

complexity and perfection of nature, the more we benefit from it. The spiritual, theological and philosophical analogies are inescapable. Being close to the land dictates a certain morality and requires a wide perspective and a constant eye on the future.


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alumni spotlight   B


Mark Vermylen ‘78 A. Zerega’s Sons, Inc., Pasta Manufacturer Fairlawn, New Jersey A. Zerega’s Sons, Inc., is a major manufacturer of dry pasta. Zerega’s supplies pasta to food processors, distributors, and restaurant chains – many of the country’s largest pasta users-- throughout North America. The company produces over 200 million pounds of pasta annually in a wide variety of shapes. The company’s pasta can be found at restaurants such as Olive Garden and Applebee’s, in brands such as Stouffers, Kraft and Progresso, and in supermarkets across the country. A. Zerega’s Sons was founded in Brooklyn, NY, in 1848 by Antoine Zerega, who emigrated from France several years earlier. His family had originally come from Northern Italy. Zerega’s is a fifth-generation family business and is today owned and operated by the Vermylen family, Antoine’s great-great-grandchildren.

focus on reading, thinking and communicating. Those continue to be important skills for me today. And I like to think that my Benedictine education taught me that you can work hard in business, and be successful, without sacrificing your ethical and moral standards.

Does Zerega engage in any corporate outreach that reflects the Benedictine values of work, community, hospitality and stewardship? The beauty of being in a business like pasta manufacturing is that you never really have to apologize for what you do for a living. While we don’t advertise it, we like to think that we are able to take care of our customers, be good and fair to our employees, be a good corporate citizen, and make a profit at the same time. We support a wide variety of charities, with a special focus on those that address the needs of the hungry.

What is the best part of your day at work? I’m happiest when I can do something that meets the need of a customer, whether it’s in getting a special pasta made for their product, rushing out some samples, or changing a production schedule so that they can get their products made.

Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth to the present. I was an English major at Georgetown and then got a great job in a training program at a New York bank. I stayed in financial services for six years, getting an MBA at Columbia along the way, before joining my family’s business in 1989.

How are you related to the founder of the company? Antoine Zerega was my great-great-grandfather. He arrived in Brooklyn in 1844 and started making pasta a few years later.

What kind of impact on others have you seen as a result of your work? We’ve been able to greatly increase the size of our business, meet the needs of more and more customers, and provide steady employment and good benefits to many long-time employees. And obviously my work is an important source of resources for me, my wife, Barbara, and our five children.

What is the most important gift you have received from your work? When did you first consider the food business as a career? I worked at our factory during both high school and college, even during some of those long spring breaks from the Abbey! So I was very familiar with the business. But I didn’t think it was for me until I was out in the business world for a while. My father and my two older brothers invited me to join the company to manage our sales to food processors and to oversee the finances of the company.

The most important gift that I’ve received is a sense of self-worth – that I’m a part of something that is productive and contributes to the economy and society.

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to join you for a meal and conversation, who would they be? Jesus Christ – res ipsa loquitur

Did your Portsmouth Abbey education, and specifically its Benedictine foundation, affect your career choices?

Antoine Zerega, my great-great-grandfather – I would like to learn about how he started the pasta industry in the United States and tell him about the industry today.

My years at Portsmouth were really the highlight of my education (despite going to Georgetown and Columbia afterwards!). The grounding in the classic Western liberal arts encouraged me to

Winston Churchill – he was a strong leader who persevered under incredible stress. He also had a wide variety of interests and experiences, and would be a fascinating dinner companion.


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alumni spotlight B  FEEDING BODY AND SOUL

John Pappalardo ‘90 CEO, Cape Cod Commercial Hook Fishermen’s Association North Chatham, Massachusetts John is CEO of the Cape Cod Commercial Hook Fishermen’s Association. Actively serving on many local, regional, national and international fishery management bodies, John is in close touch with the realities of commercial fishing. He has fished commercially for cod, bluefin tuna, and bass out of Chatham and Harwich, MA. He is currently the Chairman of the New England Fishery Management Council, and serves as a state Commissioner on the Massachusetts Marine Fisheries Advisory Commission.

Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth to the present. I attended Seton Hall University in South Orange, NJ. In the summer of 2004 I moved to Cape Cod, taking a job running a raw bar at the Beachcomber in Wellfleet. That fall I moved to Chatham and by the next spring I was volunteering with the Cape Cod Commercial Hook fishermen’s Association (CCHFA). Over the next 15 years, I participated in the growth and nourishment of our start-up non-profit organization. Our slogan is, “Protecting a resource, a tradition and a way of life.” We accomplish this by educating, advocating and investing.

When did you first consider commercial fishing as a career? Commercial fishing for me was a means to an end. While I have had some of the most memorable experiences of my life on the water, I used fishing to support my work at the CCCHFA. My career has been shaped by my personal experiences on the water as well as my advocacy for them.

Did your Portsmouth Abbey education, and specifically its Benedictine foundation, affect your career choices? Attending Portsmouth Abbey raised the bar on my expectations for myself. Exposure to the basics, the classics and the sense of community represented throughout the institution stand as a model for me in my organization. I believe the Abbey smoothed

some of my edges and sharpened my mind with an eye towards critical thinking and effective communication.

Do you see commercial fishing as an extension of the Benedictine ora et labora? “Pray and Work”…there are a lot of both in commercial fishing. There is a strong connection between fishermen and their maker. Commercial fishing is also a tremendous amount of work. The CCCHFA is a nationally recognized, non-profit organization that aligns protection of the oceans with the interests of our historic fishing community. We support stewardship of coastal ecosystems through education, research, and policy programs. Started in 1991 by the local fishing fleet, the Hook Association has become the leading community fisheries organization in the region. We are taking action now to make sure there are fish for future generations.

What is the best part of your day at work? When a fisherman has a better day or season as a result of our work together.

What impact on others have you seen as a result of your work? Today fish stocks are rebounding and we are on our way to healthy, sustainable fisheries. As a result there are more jobs for fishermen in my community.

What is the most important gift you have received from your labors? An opportunity to live and work in the marine environment while advocating for the current fleet and making policy for the future.

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to join you for a meal and conversation, who would they be? Abraham Lincoln – We share the same birthday, and I have always admired what he accomplished despite the times. Jack Nicklaus – My swing needs help. Warren Buffett – Somebody needs to pay for the meal. Plus, who wouldn’t want tips from this guy?


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alumni spotlight  


Conor at HELP headquarters in 2010, following the earthquake

Conor Bohan ‘86 Founder and Executive Director of the Haitian Education and Leadership Program (HELP) New York, NY, and Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Conor’s self-described circuitous but valuable journey that led him to Haiti in 1996 began after leaving Portsmouth Abbey. He graduated from Brown and then spent a few years, working odd jobs in Europe and building houses on Martha’s Vineyard. He found that he wanted to go abroad again but was looking for something more fulfilling. In 1996, Conor went to Haiti to teach and coach sports at a magnet high school for disadvantaged students near Port-au-Prince. The plight of the Haitian people, and the lack of educational opportunities for talented Haitian students, spurred him to start HELP in 1997, an organization that has since grown from modest beginnings to a Haiti’s largest university scholarship program today.

Five months after the earthquake, how is HELP doing? HELP is doing better than most. Unfortunately two of our students died in the earthquake, our student center collapsed, and most of Haiti’s universities also collapsed. In the days and weeks following, we were able to get food and medical care for all our students and staff who needed it. We set up a temporary HQ in one of our student houses where we fed and housed over 50 students and several staff. While the universities were closed, we offered English and Spanish classes for our students and integrated them into the relief effort. Now all the universities have reopened, albeit on a limited schedule, and were are moving into a new building which can accommodate the 150 students we will support during the upcoming school year.

How was HELP most able to assist the Haitian people in the aftermath of the earthquake? Following the earthquake, we were able to place almost all of our 105 students in the relief effort. Medical students worked in


clinics and field hospitals around the country, caring for thousands of victims. Engineering students interned with NGO’s in rebuilding infrastructure and others worked for organizations such as the Red Cross, Action Against Hunger, and Oxfam. Two projects that our students worked on were particularly interesting. The first was a series of focus groups with residents of the refugee camps spearheaded by Bill Clinton’s UN Office of the Special Envoy for Haiti. HELP students asked camp residents what they thought the reconstruction priorities should be and the results were presented at the UN donors’ conference in March. One of the many tragic effects of the earthquake has been rampant violence against women in the refugee camps. Several of our female students served as investigators for a rape prevention and prosecution project run by a local human rights law firm. The lead attorney writes, “The HELP students placed the women’s stories in a broader societal context with a deeper level of analysis than graduate students I have worked with in other settings. Your work is incredibly important for Haiti’s future.” For the long term, the earthquake has only strengthened our belief in the efficacy of our approach. The earthquake’s effects were compounded by the near total absence of skilled professionals in Haiti. The lack of urban planning, code enforcement, architects and engineers led to substandard housing in inappropriate locations. The lack of medical personnel in Haiti resulted in more care given by foreign doctors than local ones. Building Haiti’s professional class is more important than ever.

Did your Portsmouth Abbey experience, or the Benedictine ethos, help form the foundation for your work in Haiti that has evolved into HELP?  At the Abbey it is hard to overlook the value of teaching and learning and the pursuit of excellence.  Abbey students learn that education is the first step to growth and progress, both in-


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Conor in a meeting with former President Bill Clinton and the U.N. SecretaryGeneral Ban Ki-moon at H.E.L.P. headquarters


dividually and collectively. The monks and faculty embody St. Benedict’s tenet of “study”; they are devoted to their subjects and their students.  Another strong component of a Catholic education is the idea of social justice. In Haiti I taught students who were very bright and willing to work hard despite terrible circumstances. But they had no opportunity to fulfill their potential.  These students could not have the educational fortune we have, simply because they didn’t have any money.  HELP was an obvious answer, combining ideas of social justice with the concrete power of education. If we provide opportunity for students to achieve their potential and earn a degree, they will have the tools they need to support their families and change their communities. 

Please walk us through your typical day. As Executive Director I am responsible for the programmatic, development and administrative aspects of HELP. On any given day I am working on all three to various degrees. I work out of HELP’s New York City office but spend about a quarter of the year in Haiti. The earthquake fundamentally changed my work in the short term. I arrived in Haiti two days after the quake and found a devastated city with no running water, no electricity, no gas stations, no banks and no cell phone service. Working with the Haiti staff we were able to reconstitute HELP and allow our students to assist thousands of their fellow citizens. As HELP has grown from an all-volunteer organization to one with 14 employees in the U.S. and Haiti, my role has obviously changed. Our current challenges include strengthening our administration and student services in order to triple our student body to 300 over the next five years. At that point we will have more students than Portsmouth Abbey did when I graduated. We are also working on an alumni contribution model whereby our graduates, once employed, would contribute financially to HELP.

What is your favorite part of your work? In the short term it is gratifying to see talented young men and women succeed in spite of a societal structure designed to create failure. But the real measure of HELP’s success is collective. Our goal is to significantly expand the number of scholarships we offer in order to create a critical mass of progressive leaders in Haiti. The favorite part of my work will come when HELP graduates begin to address Haiti’s longstanding, systemic obstacles to progress.

What is the most precious gift you have received from the people whom you assist (and with whom you work)? Seeing my colleagues take HELP’s vision and mission to heart is a great gift. From the students, a simple “thank-you” is often the most powerful gift. A few months ago I was at the HELP center and a former student, Evens, walked in. Evens now works in the HR department of a local bank and supports his extended family on his salary. “I just stopped by to thank you for everything HELP did for me. I would never be where I am today without HELP.”

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to join you for a meal and conversation, who would they be, and why? Toussaint Louverture is the general who led the Indigenous Army against the armies of the three great colonial powers of the day, Spain, Britain and Napoleon’s France, and defeated them all, culminating in Haiti’s independence and the only successful slave revolution in history. Toussaint was a masterful diplomat, military strategist and motivator despite having no formal training. I would also love to have the opportunity to meet private citizens who led large-scale social revolutions.  Nelson Mandela and leaders of the women’s suffrage movement come to mind. Mandela appears to us now as a smiling elderly man, and Susan B. Anthony is on the dollar coin with her hair in a bun. These “feel-good” images belie the fact that these people led intense struggles against powerful entrenched interests. They fought battles of ideology, strategy, and publicity, and were often victims of violence. I think we all could learn a lot from their strategies for success. Conor with his first student, Isemonde Joseph, now a doctor in Haiti.


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Fr. Chris with his father, Catesby, at his installation as pastor in July 2009



alumni spotlight   B

Rev. Catesby “Chris” Clay ‘92 Pastor, St. Lawrence Church, Lawrenceburg, Kentucky

Briefly describe your journey from the Abbey to the present. After Portsmouth, I studied at Georgetown University and graduated with a double major in Spanish and International Business in 1996. I returned home and found a job with an equine trade publication in Lexington called The Blood-Horse. I stayed there for five years as managing editor of TBH MarketWatch, an investor newsletter focused on thoroughbred breeding and racing. I left The Blood-Horse in 2002 and studied at another Benedictine school, St. Meinrad Seminary, in Southern Indiana, for five years. Bishop Ronald Gainer of the Diocese of Lexington ordained me in 2007. I served at the Cathedral of Christ the King for two years as Associate Pastor, then was reassigned to St. Lawrence in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, as pastor last July (2009).

When did you first feel the call to serve others through a religious vocation? The people of God noticed my calling to the priesthood long before I figured it out. In my 20s, I really had an awakening of my Catholic faith and got more involved in serving in the Church in different ways. In doing this, people started to ask me if I had thought about being a priest. While it really hadn’t crossed my mind, because of their comments, I really started to take it to prayer. On August 29, 2000, I returned from work and around 6pm, knelt by my bedside and prayed, “God what is your will for me?” Immediately the telephone rang. I picked it up and it was my dad who told me that a family friend, Teka Berhanu, wanted to talk to me. Teka got on the phone and asked me, “Chris, I am studying in the seminary in Rome. Why don’t you come join me in the seminary? You would love it!” There was the answer to my prayer! Several months later, I told him of my prayer before he asked me that and he told me, “Ever since I had met you as a young boy I thought God


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may have been calling you to a religious vocation and I had been praying for you since that time.”

Did your Portsmouth Abbey experience, or the Benedictine ethos, help form the foundation for your vocation? St. Benet’s was my home during my three years at the Abbey. Every Thursday evening Father Paschal celebrated our house Mass. He needed a server and a lector. My junior year he asked if I was interested in this responsibility. I agreed and did that most weeks. At that time, I didn’t think, “Oh, I am going to be a priest.” Looking back, however, I can see how our Lord was laying the foundations for what I am doing now. Father Paschal opened a door that I entered and served in that small way which led me to going through other doors to get me to where I am now.

What is your favorite part of your ministry? I am trying to get to that place where my favorite part of ministry is doing what God has called me to do at the present moment. I am certainly not there yet, as there are times I moan and groan about what I need to do and will put off what needs to be done. At any rate, I love blessing people. When a priest blesses it is Christ Himself blessing the person. In a way, I hope I’m following in the footsteps of Rev. Dom Benedict Lang, at Portsmouth Abbey, who I remember always loved to offer his priestly blessing when I came up to the business office to get my allowance.

What kind of impact have you seen as a result of your work? Most of the time, I don’t see what kind of impact comes as a result of me trying to do the Lord’s work. If I saw what the impact was, I might start to think, “Wow! Look at all the great work I’m doing.” The impact I want to see is converted lives and changed hearts. God is the only one who can do that. Sometimes, God will show me how He has used me to


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bring His grace to someone. Oftentimes, I see that most powerfully through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. I remember hearing the confession of a dying man who had been away from the sacraments for decades. When he heard those words of absolution, the joy that came across his face was incredible. We both had tears of joy in our eyes and were filled with gratitude for God’s great mercy.

What is the most precious gift you have received from the people to whom you minister? The people of God are extremely generous with their love and trust in welcoming me into their lives at the most sacred times. For example, recently I had the opportunity to pray and listen to a neighbor who was going through some tough times. He was very down and shared what burdened him with me. A couple days later, on Father’s Day, he hollered over to me, “Happy Father’s Day.” I thanked him and he said, “You may not have any children, but what you have been able to do for me, you’re my daddy.” I couldn’t believe his words because he was non-Catholic, but it was a lesson how grateful he was for my spiritual fatherhood.

If you could invite any three personalities to join you for a meal and conversation, who would they be? Now that I am serving at a parish named after St. Lawrence, a 3rd Century deacon, I would enjoy sitting down with him and hearing how he was able to serve the poor of Rome with such charity and face the Roman authorities with such courage and humor. It would be a very good meal, since he is patron saint of cooks, and also it would be very engaging since he is noted for his humor based on his famous last words as he was being grilled alive, “This side is done, turn me over and have a bite.” (Saint Ambrose, De officiis ministrorum). When I served at Christ the King, I brought Holy Communion to a man named Michael Swerczek, who had been bedridden from a car accident since 1988. He could only communicate with winks, blinks, and nods. God called Michael home to be with Him on March 27 [2010]. I would like to be able to sit down with him now and be able to share an actual conversation with him where I’m not doing all the talking. I also would like to have a meal and conversation with my paternal grandfather, Brutus Clay. Since he died when my father was only two, it would be great to hear him share stories of growing up on a horse farm in the later part of the 19th century and how he, as a non-Catholic from Paris, Kentucky, met and married my grandmother, Agnes McEvoy, a Catholic from Baltimore.

Abbaye de Fecamp and Benedictine Liqueur by Dom Damian Kearney ’45, O.S.B. A recent article in The New York Times called attention to the 500th anniversary of the most famous liqueur ever concocted, Benedictine. This postprandial cordial was first invented or discovered in 1510, when Dom Bernardo Vicelli, a monk of the renowned abbey of Fecamp in Normandy, blended and distilled 27 herbs and spices in an attempt to find a medicinal potion for the sick monks of his monastery. Called an elixir, it was highly successful, but the formula was kept secret and not used for commercial purposes. During the French Revolution, when the monastery was suppressed in 1791 and the buildings destroyed except for the abbey church (which was spared to serve the people), the recipe that had been so jealously guarded was lost until the secret was discovered by chance in a centuries-old book from the monastery library that had been placed on sale. This was among a cache of used books bought by Alexandre Legrand, a nineteenth-century entrepreneur, who recognized the value of his find and conducted experiments based on the ancient formula. Eventually, he succeeded in developing the liqueur, which he cannily called Benedictine, acknowledging its source and giving it the cachet associated with a famous monastery, produit de Fecamp. Many monastic houses have produced their own particular liqueurs: Chartreuse, originally produced by the Carthusians in France, immediately comes to mind, but the venerable monastery of Lerins on the isle of St. Honorat, just off Cannes, has developed several brands of liqueur. Even at Portsmouth Abbey, one of the monks, Dom Joseph Byron, periodically confects his own unique elixir, which compares favorably with its more renowned predecessors and is brought out for festive occasions. Fecamp, where the authentic liqueur is produced, now boasts a large museum adjoining the distillery, which displays the process without giving away the technique. A section of the museum is devoted to an exhibit of the many imitations attempting to capitalize on the Benedictine name and utilizing the same shape of bottle and the distinctive D.O.M. trademark (Deo Optimo Maximo: To God the Best and Greatest). The Abbey of Fecamp, until the time of its destruction, had an ancient and illustrious history, dating back to the seventh century when it was founded as a convent for nuns. Destroyed by Vikings and later by Normans, Benedictine monks were established there, patronized by the Dukes of Normandy and by King Edward the Confessor, who was grateful for the hospitality he received when he spent his exile in Normandy prior to his reign in England. Famed for its production of illuminated manuscripts and its contributions to liturgical music in the Middle Ages, it continued its high reputation through scholarship when it embraced the Maurist reform in the 17th century. Until it was dispersed in 1791, the community maintained an exemplary monastic observance. It is perhaps ironical that it should be best remembered as the site where the most popular liqueur originated. In New York, a cocktail with Benedictine as its base is now being called the Monte Cassino. But the chief demand is for its being mixed with a bottle of Courvoisier or Martell to reduce the sweetness and offer the added zest of a good brandy.


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alumni spotlight   B


Patrick Léger ‘92 Farming/Organic Ketchup Princeton, New Jersey Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth to the present. The “script” I followed coming out the Abbey is a fairly standard one. I went to college and took on your typical liberal arts education—majoring in history but taking classes in different areas. After that, I went to work in the tech industry and worked on software. This “techie” work was interesting for some time but my professional interests were pointing more and more towards the investment field. I took a year off and went traveling around the world with my Abbey classmate, Andrew Wallace, and then went to business school. I took as many finance and accounting classes as I could and began studying for the CFA. I eventually made my way into the investment field and then started my firm last year, Giverny Capital Advisors. The firm is named after the town in France where Claude Monet created and painted one of Europe’s most well-known gardens.

When did you first consider farming? Why tomatoes and ketchup? My wife, Theresa, was the inspiration behind my interest in farming. I always enjoyed being outside as a kid and also liked cooking with fresh produce. When I met Theresa, she already had a beautiful produce garden on a farm where she lived. She got me into it and I became hooked. With each season, the garden became larger and larger. We eventually opened an “honor system” farm stand where people could buy from us. Then one year we had a bumper crop of tomatoes that were definitely going to go bad if we didn’t figure out a way to preserve them. We had already been making sauce and wanted to make something different to use up all those tomatoes. I then remembered that my mother always made homemade ketchup to go with many of the French-Canadian dishes I grew up on. I asked her for the recipe and my wife and I started tinkering in the kitchen for some time and came up with a new version. We started processing a bunch of our tomatoes and eventually bought a tomato press to remove the seeds and skins. That year, we gave some out to friends around Christmas. Everyone seemed to like it so we decided to grow more tomatoes the following season. We also created a brand called “First Field” and began selling the product at a local organic grocer here in Princeton. They kept selling out and we kept making more. So “tomatoes and ketchup” came about as a result of both serendipity and some degree of awareness on our part (like most things in life). Tomatoes happen to grow sensationally well in New Jersey. We had too many one year. We thought ketchup would be a good way to preserve them. We expanded and improved the concept the following year. We repeated the process. We’ve always kept our “real jobs” but have had a lot of fun with the farming and the ketchup.


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Did your Portsmouth Abbey education, and specifically its Benedictine foundation, affect your career choices? The Abbey provided me with a multi-disciplinary approach. The School created an environment where kids could develop their minds, bodies, and spirits. It’s difficult to quantify how a multi-disciplinary approach affects your career choices –  but I believe that it fosters an openness and curiosity towards the world. Having many different mental models as a way to interpret the world and shape your decisions is probably the greatest gift a school can give. This openness is what enables serendipity to exist and is what helps you have more confidence in trying something new. This allows you to make career changes and adjust to changing conditions. We’re fortunate to have had a place that developed this openness. It’s tough to foster this sort of thing further down the road. The Benedictines at the school are an integral part of this environment that teaches kids to think broadly and stay curious. The key for this open environment to not fall into chaos was the Benedictine approach that created important boundaries and provided a rhythm to life as a student. One could probably describe it as a sort of tug-of-war between the students and the monks – one pulling towards chaos and the other pulling towards order. But the whole thing worked. I have many memories of this notion of rhythm. One is being invited to Vespers and then to dinner in the monastery when I was a Sixth Former. I had just finished hockey practice and went to Vespers with the monks –  still worked up from the physical toll from practice. Vespers followed by dinner in silence had this calming effect –  aligning body and soul in a way. Then after dinner was a time where we could stay and socialize over tea with the monks –  the conversation turned to all sorts of topics: philosophy, politics, sports, etc. So, with that experience, the order was body, soul and mind.  But this sort of thing happened all the time, most of it subconsciously as you were a student living at the School. This has an impact over the years and offers young people a training that they hopefully follow later in life.

Do you see farming/growing food as an extension of the Benedictine way of life (ora et labora)? Farming offers a source of balance for me, and in that sense, can be tied back to the Benedictine way of life. Here in our country,


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where more and more people are becoming knowledge workers of sorts, I think a great imbalance began developing as we became a service-based economy. Basically, there isn’t enough labora! Farming offers the kind of labor that is profoundly satisfying. Most of my work day is spent thinking about investing – most of the time reading in isolation. While this has its own merits, there is something unique you gain from working the soil. It’s really about building a greater sense of connection with your environment and hopefully raising your awareness level along the way. You have to understand the strengths and limitations of your soil, you need to figure out what your plants need, you have to adjust to changes, and you need to dedicate yourself to the process. So, there is a mental element to this activity that complements the physical work. This type of labora is not only helpful in allowing you to connect with your environment, but it is helpful in allowing you to disconnect as well. In the age of Facebooking and the onslaught of digital data, there’s something valuable in putting all your gadgets down and going to pull out some weeds for an hour. One of the best things about farming is that your work leads to something tangible to eat. One of my favorite things is going to the farm after a day’s work at the office and picking fresh produce for that night’s dinner. This sort of satisfaction doesn’t happen regularly in the world of the person who only does “thinking” work. Farming offers this kind of satisfaction and connectedness on a daily basis during much of the year. So, it’s basically all about balance, like ora et labora.

Do you see your efforts to grow food in an organic/sustainable manner as a distinctly Benedictine value? Stewardship over your environment is certainly ingrained in the Benedictine tradition and sustainable agriculture is an extension of this responsibility. For too many years, the force behind much of agriculture was our view of our “dominion” over the earth. We’re happy to see the shift towards sustainability and see that this is becoming more the norm rather than the exception.

What do you enjoy most about your farming and ketchup-making? I talked about farming before so I’ll focus on ketchup. What we’ve enjoyed most about ketchup-making is how it’s brought us closer to our community. We had no idea this would happen and it’s been great. After several test batches of ketchup made in our own kitchen, we decided that we needed to go find a commercial kitchen. My wife found a non-profit culinary school called Elijah’s Promise that provides culinary training to community members so that they can earn better wages in local restaurant and food industries. We started using their kitchen off-hours to process our ketchup. We’ve now become actively involved with this organization and help teach some of the students about food preservation. They also visited the farm – something many of them had never done. Anyhow, we had not been active with this organization and it’s ketchup that brought us together. This connection with the community also occurs at the organic grocer that sells our ketchup and also with the people who stop by our farm stand. Even with the suppliers in Amish country where we buy our

jars and irrigation equipment, or the guy who sold us our tractor. These are all people that we didn’t know and ketchup has been a sort of vehicle for meeting people and feeling part of something. Ketchup has also connected me to other Abbey alumni. Michael Panciera, Class of 73, teaches agriculture at Berea College in Kentucky. When my wife and I happened to be in Kentucky one year, we decided to go down to Berea to visit Michael.  He was able to provide all sorts of valuable advice for growing our tomatoes and gave us a great tour of all the agricultural facilities where he teaches; it was such a terrific visit.  There is no way we would have met Michael without the ketchup. Tasting ketchup is also a fun part of the process. We are all welltrained from a young age to use ketchup on all types of food. It provides a common reference point for children developing their taste buds. I’ve actually heard it called the “Esperanto of food” – something that children from all around the world could agree on. So, tasting ketchup never gets old and I think we’re having a lot more fun than the people who passed on the ketchup idea and decided to go into the sauerkraut business.

What impact on others have you seen as a result of your work? The primary impact has been fostering a sense of community, as I mentioned earlier. The farming provides the sort of labor and focus that helps balance my life and that of others. We have friends comes over to the farm and help us – it’s a good reason for them to leave their other work behind and come do something different. The ketchup is an even greater connector to the community since it’s something that is actually sold to the community. So, I think the primary impact has been in people slowing down their pace a bit – either through helping on the farm or taking a moment to try a new ketchup.

What is the most important gift you have received as a result your labors? Farming and ketchup-making are both humbling experiences that can test anyone’s patience. I think St. Benedict himself would probably feel some frustration from cranking out a good batch of ketchup. The right proportion of spices can go awry very quickly, canning the ketchup at 180 degrees leads to frequent burns, and there are probably a dozen other factors that can lead to a manufacturing and mental breakdown. So, I hope there is a gift from this type of labor. Patience is most likely one – and I can always use more of that. The other is what I’ve been talking about for a while now – awareness. We grow our tomatoes from seed, plant and take care of them, harvest them and then process them into ketchup. We have followed their life from day 1 so you can’t help but become more aware of everything that can affect them…. and hopefully we become more aware of ourselves along the way.


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alumni spotlight   B


Are you involved with any kind of hands-on work outside of your Church?

Jacob Sahms ‘95 Pastor, Blandford United Methodist Church Petersburg, Virginia

I am currently involved in trying to get campus ministry solidified at the local junior college where I have taught as needed over the last two years, as well as begin to grow relationships at the growing military base a few miles away.

What kind of impact have you seen as a result of your work?

Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth Abbey to the present. After graduating from the University of Richmond (UR) with a double major in English and Religion, I spent two-and-a-half years in Kentucky earning a master of divinity degree at Asbury Theological Seminary. I returned to the Richmond area, married, and began working in the United Methodist (UM) Church. I also volunteered with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes at UR, continuing to serve as a minister and mentor to college students. I currently serve as the pastor of a UM church in Petersburg, VA, and I write for the website, sharing thoughts on faith in the world of movies, music, books, and sports.

When did you first feel the call to serve others through a religious vocation? My parents would say I began exploring that call as a three-yearold! My first “obvious” call was during my Fifth Form year of high school, when I knew I was supposed to go to seminary and prepare myself to clearly explain my faith to others.

Did your Portsmouth Abbey experience, or the Benedictine ethos, help form the foundation for your vocation? I think the distinctive experience of growing up at the Abbey, learning from many of the monks before I even became a student, and learning from Mrs. Weida through the “Teens Leading Children” program gave me additional “fuel for the fire” of faith and community service that was carefully nurtured at home.

My church has moved from part-time when I first arrived two years ago to full-time in the last six months, and the impact that we are having in discipleship, building community, and serving our community blooms a bit more each day. We’re raising money to benefit the poor and homeless of our community, and are watching as individuals and families are attracted to what they see through a large event at our church to come and join in worship.

What is the most precious gift you have received from the people to whom you minister? The encouragement to try new things and the reminder that I’m called to be a leader in the church. When I first arrived at Blandford, I had seven years of experience working in church but I had never been the sole pastor. They have bought into the vision that I’ve cast, and helped me grow as a leader and as a minister. My faith in Christ calls me to serve those who are less fortunate, and to meet my community where they are, so that they might come to have that relationship with Christ as well. Serving in a soup kitchen, listening to the stories of a soldier, preaching the gospel – all of these are part of being a person of faith, and for me, it’s my calling as well!

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to join you for a meal and conversation, who would they be, and why? Bono of U2 for his musical genius and philanthropy, the author Donald Miller for his humor and insight, and Kurt Warner, retired NFL quarterback, to discuss his balancing of family, work, and faith.

Please walk us through your typical day. There are no typical days! Whether it’s leading a Bible study for young adults, older folks, an intergenerational group, or meeting with a series of people individually, my time is often spent with people one-on-one or in small groups. I’m regularly involved with worship on Sunday mornings, church council and subcommittee meetings, fundraising, mentoring, being mentored, etc.

I don’t think anything excites me more in ministry than sharing a glimpse of the light of God’s grace. Whether it’s connecting with a young adult, moving someone with a word in preaching, articulating something that I’ve seen in a movie through an essay on the Internet, or leading a Bible study, unleashing that “aha” moment is my favorite moment in ministry.


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What is your favorite part of your ministry?


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alumni spotlight   B


Andrea (second from right) out with a goup of Faith Alliance volunteers

also supports several missionaries around the world. In the future, we hope to show compassion to communities that are farther away. This summer a team of fifteen attendees of Faith Alliance Church will go to Portland, ME, to run a Vacation Bible School for local children, assist the Portland Housing Authority with various projects, assist at a food kitchen, and minister to refugees from war-torn Somalia and Sudan.

What is your favorite part of your work?

Andrea Sahms ‘99 Director of Community Groups and Compassion Ministries, Faith Alliance Church Attleboro, Massachusetts Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth to the present. After graduating from Portsmouth, I went to Syracuse University and earned a B.S. in education in inclusive elementary and special education with a specialization in environmental science. I then graduated from the Harvard School of Education with an M.Ed. in the Mind, Brain, and Education program. Afterwards, I taught in the Attleboro Public School system in Attleboro, MA. Then I began my adventures overseas. I taught 8th grade math and science at the American School of Kuwait for one year. Next, I taught English to businessmen in Guinea, West Africa, for one year. I am currently employed by Faith Alliance Church in Attleboro, MA, as the director of community groups and compassion ministries.

Did your Portsmouth Abbey experience, or the Benedictine ethos, help form the foundation for your vocation? As an Abbey student, I was provided with opportunities to put these principles of compassion into practice. During my Form III year, students were required to participate in community service. The project that year was to knock on doors in Tonomy Hill in Newport and offer free food to the residents. This experience stimulated me to grow and allowed me to reflect the love of Christ. Another activity that instilled the importance of showing compassion to the community was the annual Clothe-a-Child project. The Abbey provided concrete ways to put the words of Jesus into action.

Please walk us through your typical day. Compassion Ministries are divided into two categories: local missions and global missions. In the spring, the church participated in an outdoor work day in a neighboring town to clean up the grounds near the administration buildings and the town park. Our volunteers helped paint the interior of the Attleboro YMCA. Several women spent an afternoon with the women at Teen Challenge in Providence. Teen Challenge is a residential, faith-based organization that assists women struggling with various addictions. This winter Faith Alliance Church also collected winter clothing for these women. In the fall, the church cooked and served a meal at the Salvation Army drop-in center on a Sunday night. The church

The mission of the Faith Alliance Church is Christ, Community, and Compassion. When the pastor of the church learned that I was returning to the U.S. from serving on the mission field in Guinea, he asked me if I was interested in the position. This job is tailor-made for me. I am responsible for connecting people to community groups within the church. The groups meet weekly to learn and grow with one another. Together they serve God, one another, and the community. I am also responsible for organizing compassion projects. There is nothing more rewarding than reaching out to those less fortunate in the name of Jesus Christ.

What kind of impact have you seen as a result of your work? Being involved in Compassion Ministries is very rewarding. God has blessed us with so many gifts, both spiritual and material. Many times after serving those less fortunate, I walk away feeling just as blessed, if not more than the recipients. I realize how much I have to be grateful for: home, food, clothing, job, family, car, church, friends, etc. Many people we reach out to do not have these things in their lives. If we share just a portion of what we have, a few hours of our time, a smile, and love, the impact is great. In fact, it is probably greater than we will ever know.

What is the most precious gift you have received back? As I mentioned, several women from the church recently visited the women at Teen Challenge. The women at Teen challenge were very excited share their stories and to interact with women who were there to love and not judge them. In return, the women from the church were blessed by the testimonies given by the residents. We learned about their addictions and struggles but ultimately through the power and love of Jesus Christ, they are free from these addictions and are on their way to recovery.

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) to join you for a meal and conversation, who would they be, and why? When asked which three personalities I would invite to join me for a meal and conversation, these three individuals immediately came to mind: the Apostle Paul; Dietrich Bonhoeffer; and Corrie ten Boom. I would like to meet all three of them for the same reason. They died to self, loved God with all their heart, and were a true reflection of the love of Jesus Christ. They put others before themselves and had the courage to follow the will of God for their lives, regardless of the cost, even death. They epitomize Romans 12:1: “And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice– the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.”


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alumni spotlight   B


Kate Ferrara Homes ‘00

Are you able to engage in outreach that reflects the Benedictine values of work, community, hospitality and stewardship?

Professional Chef Venice, California Briefly describe your journey from Portsmouth to the present. After graduating from Loyola College with a degree in French, I moved to Phoenix, AZ, with my now-husband, Harper. After years of contemplating a career as a chef, I decided to attend Scottsdale Culinary Institute, an established Cordon Bleu Program, and never looked back. Wanting to explore the full spectrum of career options for a young chef, I completed an internship as a food stylist at the Food Network before heading back to Phoenix to enter into the restaurant world. I was lucky to get a job at Mary Elaine’s, working for award-winning chef Bradford Thompson, where I finally started to understand the demands and details of fine dining. I later went on to work in Boulder, CO, at Frasca Food and Wine, where my experience was the most comprehensive and elevated me to the knowledge and skill level I have today. I now live in Venice Beach, CA, and work as a personal chef, with multiple clients I cook for on a weekly basis and do occasional catering for. I also spend part of my week working at Andrew’s Cheese Shop, where we sell some of the finest and rarest cheeses, along with world- class beer and wine. I hope to take the retail knowledge I am gaining from it and open up a gourmet food store specializing in prepared food and high-end food products.

Being a chef and cooking food for others, one has to embrace the desire to serve others and to gain satisfaction from another’s fulfillment. The amount of work that goes into a night of service at a restaurant or a catered dinner party, and the subsequent nourishment of body and soul of the guests, is a rewarding projection of hospitality. Having the skills to provide food for others or to give someone else the tools for good eating is very empowering and much needed in today’s world where so many are malnourished. Here in Venice, my husband and I have thrown a party collecting food for the St. Joseph’s Center food bank. Local industry professionals can also donate their time to the Culinary Training Program or the Bread and Roses Café, both of which educate and feed those in need.

What is the best part of your day at work? Can you take us through a typical day? On a typical day, I have a menu planned out for a client for which I purchase all the ingredients on my way to their house. After arriving, I get right to work preparing a variety of meals for them to eat throughout the week; some entrees, sides, lunch options or desserts, depending on a family’s particular needs. The best part of my day is when the client is home at any given time during my visit and tries a new dish I’ve prepared. I love seeing the reaction and hearing the satisfaction they get from my cooking.

When did you first consider culinary arts as a career?

What impact on others have you seen as a result of your work?

I had always harbored a passion for fine cuisine. I entertained the idea of being a professional chef throughout high school (while eating the fine cheeses from the contraband fridge I snuck into Benet’s) and college when I was beginning to hone my skills more in the kitchen, but always maintained that the completion of a liberal arts education should come first. After graduating from college I was able to evaluate more seriously if it was a career I was ready to pursue.

I have been able to provide healthful, wholesome, fresh food made from scratch with quality ingredients for people who, for lack of time or desire to cook, would otherwise be eating take-out, frozen or highly processed foods.

Did your Portsmouth Abbey education, and specifically its Benedictine foundation, affect your career choices? Attending the Abbey and being immersed in the Benedictine life during my formative years helped me develop as a strong and independent person. My subsequent choices in life have reflected a desire to always be true to myself and not be afraid to go after my dreams.

Do you see your work as a professional chef as an extension of the Benedictine way of life (ora et labora)?

What is the most important gift you have received as a result your labors? I now have a sustainable job that I look forward to doing when I get up in the morning. That is a gift.

If you could invite any three personalities (living or dead) into your kitchen for a special meal you have prepared, along with good wine and conversation, who would they be, and why? Thomas Jefferson – He was a lover of all things French, and would definitely bring some good wine and cheese. JayZ – I saw him on Letterman last night. That man is sharp as a tack and hysterical.

My husband, Harper Homes – Best critic. Best friend. By becoming a professional chef, I embarked on a difficult career where success does not come without a lot of blood, sweat and tears. Prayer and self-reflection are good ways to manage stress- See page 55 for a photo of Kate and her wedding party. ful times.


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by Jim Morrell ‘68

The summer of 1967 was a time of change at Portsmouth Priory. Dom Aelred Graham’s term as prior ended and Dom Matthew Stark was elected by the monastic community to replace him. That summer was known as “The Long, Hot Summer.” There were riots in major American cities that left scores dead, American casualties in the war in Southeast Asia were increasing, and so was opposition to the war. I spent part of that summer working with a diverse group of twenty other teenagers from around the country on a service project in a rural, low-income township near Kankakee, Illinois. The project was run by the American Friends Service Committee, a Quaker organization. We participated in community outreach programs that included construction and farm work and worked in educational programs like Operation Headstart. Some members of our group attended a Quaker school during the school year and used their work on the project to fulfill their school’s service requirement. When I returned to Portsmouth for my Sixth Form year, I told Dom Matthew about the project and the Quaker school’s service requirement. He asked me to start a service program at Portsmouth. I was busy during the beginning of my Sixth Form year: classes; sports; Glee Club; prefect’s duties; and college applications. As those who graduated during those years will recall, college admission was important because men over the age of eighteen were required to register for the military draft and enrollment in college was necessary in order to obtain a student deferment from the draft. In mid-October, I had not yet organized a service program and Dom Matthew sent the always-persuasive Dom Hilary Martin and his faithful border collie, Lad, to track me down. They found me on the soccer practice field. When we arrived at his room in St. Bede’s, Dom Hilary handed me a cup of tea and a telephone and ordered me to start making phone calls. I eventually spoke with Warren Weston, executive director of the Newport Community Center, which was located just off Broadway in downtown Newport. Mr. Weston and I agreed that Portsmouth students would begin to volunteer at the community center after the Christmas holidays. Beginning in January 1968 and continuing through the spring, I worked at the community center once or twice per week in an after-school program of sports, arts and crafts and academic tutoring for elementary school children. I was graduating in June, so I enlisted some Fifth Formers to provide continuity in the program for the following year. Nicholas Unkovic ’69, Douglas Andrews ’69 and Frederick Taintor ’69 started working at the community center during that spring. Someone suggested that we run a summer day camp on the Portsmouth Priory campus for children from the community center. A proposal for a day camp was presented to the Prior’s Council in the winter of 1968 and approved. We ran the day camp, named the Martin Luther King, Jr., Day Camp, during July and August 1968. The community center sent some of their staff people to help run the camp, and we were joined by a varied group of volunteers: my Portsmouth classmate Martin Rewcastle; students from Elmhurst Academy and Mary C. Wheeler School; and a group of young, enthusiastic Cluny nuns from a convent in Newport. Activities included arts and crafts, sports, and trips to Newport beaches in the afternoons. The service program continued in the next school year. An article, titled “The Volunteer Program,” appeared in a fall 1968 edition of The Beaverboard and described the volunteers for that school year: “Returning as volunteers this year will be Unkovic, who worked with the youngest children and now heads the program, Andrews, who specialized in tutoring, and Taintor, who worked in the gym and also devoted time to the youngsters.”










In addition to leading the program that year, Nick Unkovic ran the day camp in 1969. Doug Andrews continued tutoring and wrote a senior thesis on poverty in Newport. Rick Taintor devoted free time on weekends to playing basketball with children at the community center. It is gratifying to know that a service program continues at Portsmouth all these years later.


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THE LORD OF THE SMILE by Fr. Bernard (John) Murphy, CFR ‘73 (Reprinted from GrayFriar News, Summer 2007) This past December (2006) the friars in New York brought a group of friends and Associates to our mission in Honduras. The occasion was the blessings of our new outreach center for the poor in Comayagua. “Casa Guadalupe,” as it is known, is an evangelization center and outreach facility for the poor in the neighborhood of the friary, San Serafin. The complex will help meet some of the materials as well as spiritual needs of our less fortunate brothers and sisters.

villages, and housed in a structure of leftover wood, families struggle to survive. Everyone must be busy. Everyone must work. Every member of the family has his or her role to play for the survival of all. Some will tend to the coffee-bean grove. Others collect potable water from the distant streams. Some are assigned to care for the few chickens and, if they are lucky, the goat. No one takes care of the innumerable dogs; they seem to take care of themselves.

First-time visitors to the mission are often overwhelmed by the material poverty that surrounds the friary. Everywhere one looks there are adobe huts with dirt floors, children shabbily clad in secondhand American clothes, and young mothers (and some not so young) washing their clothes on the bank of the river. Open fires burn day and night as the locals attempt to cook a meager meal of rice and tortillas or boil a little water for bathing.

“I can’t believe it. I really can’t believe it!” This constant refrain could be heard from our guests from the States throughout their eight-day excursion to Central America. Whether it was during the long and winding road trip from Tegucigalpa airport, or the mountainous treks to the outer villages; whether it was in the midst of the overactivity of preparing the Casa for its festivities, or the hyperactivity of children at play in the orphanages, the same cry was heard.

On Sundays in Comayagu many of the friars visit local orphanages, one for boys and another for young girls. The facilities, which are immaculately kept, are filled to capacity with children. Young mothers, who find themselves without means to care for their little offspring, entrust them to the care of others. Older children working with younger children under the careful supervision of dedicated laborers are raised in a “family” of hundreds. No one is without, but the supplies are often quite scarce. Some of the Associates visited a few of the many families with whom the friars work. Situated in the mountain aldeas, or small


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But this refrain was not for the spectacular beauty of the Honduran countryside, nor was it given for the task of preparing a construction site (Casa Guadalupe) for its Solemn Blessing by the local Ordinary. The expressions of disbelief, moreover, were not even a response to the unspeakable poverty of so many. Rather, the guests were reacting to the overwhelming joy on the faces of so many, especially the young. Everywhere our little entourage moved, hordes of young faces, along with wizened old men and women, smiled from ear to ear. Toothless grins and half-hidden childish smirks greeted American guests at every moment. De-


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Fr. Bernard (left) with young friends at “Casa Guadalupe” in Honduras and (below) in a neighborhood of New York

spite the overwhelming poverty and almost crushing hardships of life, the people are joyful – really joyful! It is almost unbelievable. And yet the Friars and Sisters of the Renewal experience this joy almost daily among our less fortunate brothers and sisters. This is not to deny the hardships or overlook the suffering, but it is to acknowledge that there is more to life than possessions. I experienced this personally in a most profound way shortly after high school graduation. Instead of going directly to college, I determined to take a year off and give some time in service to the needy of Appalachia. I had been privileged to attend a fine Catholic boarding school. My father, an Irish immigrant who studied hard to become a lawyer, wanted the best possible education for his sons. After graduation I wanted to take some time to serve those who were less privileged. I traveled to the mountains of Kentucky to work with a Catholic relief organization. I was assigned to build a front porch for an elderly man who lived about eight miles back from a dirt road. When I arrived at the work site, I was astonished to find that my task was a porch. This man needed a house! He had no electricity or running water, and you could look into his home, not through an open door or window, but through large cracks in the siding of what was really a shack. He was in need of much more that I was offering, but he simply wanted a porch. I began my labors and found that the more I did, the more frustrated I got. It wasn’t a question of being dissatisfied with my craftsmanship, but my frustration increased as I saw more and more that needed to be done. What made things worse was that I was miserable in my tasks and the elderly fellow seemed quite happy. In fact he kept smiling at me, which only made my frustration worse. I had everything; he had nothing. I was miserable; he was happy. And to top it off, he smiled and had no teeth! I couldn’t bear his joy and my misery. Finally I boldly asked him, “Why are you so happy?” To this day I will never forget his piercing eyes and his almost-immediate response. With a heavy mountain drawl he said, “’Cause I know Jesus.” I thought to myself, “I know Jesus.” I had had 12 years of the best Catholic education. I felt I knew Jesus. And so I retorted, “I know Jesus!” This old mountain man, with nothing but a newly refurbished porch and a shadow of a house, looked deep into my eyes and replied, “Naw, you know about Him. You don’t know Him. ‘Cause if you really knew Him, you’d be happy, too!” I remember going back to the cabin where I was staying that night and thinking about the old man’s words. It was probably the first time in my 17 years of life that I really prayed. And my prayer was earnest: “Lord, I don’t want to know about you, I want to know you!” It was perhaps the most profound cry a 17-year-old kid from Connecticut ever prayed. And I meant it!

alumni spotlight   B


The Friars and the Sisters of the Renewal are privileged to work with our less fortunate brothers and sisters. We don’t want to patronize their poverty or overlook their distress, but we see so clearly that when you have Jesus, you have everything. Jesus is our all! Unfortunately, things so often get in the way. When the original friars began our little community, they wanted to live an intentionally Franciscan lifestyle. They desired a genuine expression of the vow of poverty that would not be a source of scandal or envy to those who are called to serve. Although provision for our needs is made through the hands of so many generous benefactors, we want to live simply with as little material property as possible. Shortly after the Second Vatican Council, Pope Paul VI wrote an apostolic exhortation to consecrated religious, Evangelica Testificatio (June 1971), in which he stated: “In a civilization and a world marked by a prodigious movement of almost indefinite material growth, what witness would be offered by a religious who let himself be carried away by an uncurbed seeking for his own ease, and who considered it normal to allow himself without discernment or restraint everything that is offered him? At a time when there is an increased danger for many of being enticed by the alluring security of possessions, knowledge and power, the call of God places [religious] at the pinnacle of the Christian conscience.” Our work in the barrios of Honduras, the rough neighborhoods of New York, the East End of London, or wherever the Lord may take us is certainly intended to facilitate hands-on service to those most in need. We long to alleviate some of the challenges and difficulties associated with poverty. But our decision to live with the poor reminds us that we are all a people dependent on the Lord’s provision. Whether rich or poor, our joy will come because we know Jesus. In Him is our all. In Him is our security in life. In Him is our daily provision. And in Him is our joy! As society experiences unprecedented wealth and craving for security, as so many people are striving for true peace and fulfillment in their lives, we Franciscans of the Renewal long to bear witness to the truth that security and joy are found in Jesus. Although we can still become discouraged and sometimes distracted by our needs, all we need to do is look beyond our front doors and see so many who have so little and yet experience such joy. In serving those less fortunate, we are so often blessed beyond measure as we find the Lord’s gracious provision in the smiling faces of those most in need who know Him. “I can’t believe it. I really can’t believe it!” But it is true. Their smiles radiate the presence of God among his people!


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BOOK REV I E W Think Twice: Harnessing the Power of Counterintuition by Michael J. Mauboussin ‘82 Dr. Edward Teller once observed, “If a person tells us something is foolproof, then you know that the fool is bigger than the proof!” That seems to be a rather obvious, if somewhat humorous, statement of common sense. Yet how often do human beings neglect Dr. Teller’s wisdom, and how often do they pay all sorts of prices because of their neglect? Certainly, the last several years have seen highly intelligent, hard-working, and dedicated people make some of the worst mistakes that have led to catastrophic conditions. It would seem that black swans are flying throughout the world’s economy, the world’s environment, and the world’s politics. This is always a great puzzle to my students, who still believe that the right degree from the right university will establish them as proper saviors of the world – a world that on every day, in every way, is getting better and better. The students can’t really believe that Gershwin’s Sporting Life had it correct when he sang, “It Ain’t Necessarily So!” I can’t think of a more timely answer to their puzzlement than Michael Mauboussin’s new book, Think Twice. This is not just a book aimed at the student; it is a book aimed at all age levels, all occupations. In a word, it is aimed at anyone who is interested in trying to understand how, if everyone is so educated, if everyone is so hard-working, where did all the investment banks go? Nor is this yet one more attempt to make a few fast bucks by offering an analysis of our current economic mortifications. Rather, this is an attempt to alert people as to why so many of us, in every walk of life, keep making preventable errors. Michael J. Mauboussin is well equipped for the job. He is a graduate of Portsmouth Abbey School, Class of 1982, and Georgetown University. Mr. Mauboussin has spent his career as an analyst on Wall Street and as a professor at Columbia University’s School of Business. He is the author of several well-received books on finance, and he is considered a leading expert in the field of behavioral finance. Having had the pleasure of teaching Mr. Mauboussin, I can assure the reader that his work reflects his deep sense of balance and his ability never to stray too far from the essence of things. His calm, thoughtful insights are found on every page of his book. That should not surprise, as calm, thoughtful, and balanced observations were his hallmarks in my classroom as well.

tunity to hear Michael Mauboussin speak, don’t pass it up. During this past spring he taught two of my classes, and gave a lecture on Think Twice to the entire School, and from the eldest person to the youngest Third Former, all in attendance found it to be informative, engaging, and humorous. If you ever have the opportunity to hear Mr. Mauboussin, run – don’t walk. Trust me on this. Think Twice is based on Mr. Mauboussin’s concern for helping people to make better decisions in every aspect of their lives. His hope is that individuals will “…prepare your mind, recognize the context, apply the right technique – and practice.” Think Twice, through a series of interesting anecdotal lessons, explains why individuals make such bad decisions, and how they can be avoided in the future. Although the introduction in Think Twice is more than worth the price of the entire book, each chapter teaches lessons in behavioral psychology, game theory, and common sense that are both colorful and enlightening. My favorite chapters were: 1) The Outside View – Why Big Brown Was a Bad Bet 2) Grand Ah-Whooms – How Ten Brits Made the Millennium Bridge Wobble 3) Sorting Luck From Skill – Why Investors Excel at Buying High and Selling Low Whatever parts of the book strike your fancy, they all lead to helpful hints that boil down to always remembering that “…our minds frequently want to see the world in one way…the default, while a better way to see the world takes some mental effort,” and people “…make bad decisions because they harbor false beliefs…These beliefs prevent clear thinking …to make good decisions, you frequently must think twice, and that’s something our minds would rather not do.” Think Twice is an engaging guide to show people how to be on their guard, and how to avoid the wings of the black swans as they increasingly fly through our lives. Michael J. Mauboussin is a firstrate scholar and author. In my opinion, it wouldn’t be a stretch at all to say that Think Twice is an essential book for our time. – J. Clifford Hobbins

Most of my students enjoyed Think Twice, and found its insights to be very helpful. As an aside, if you ever get the oppor-


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Portsmouth Abbey Winter and Spring Teams Celebrate Many Milestones Al Brown, Director of Athletics The Ravens enjoyed many outstanding individual and team achievements this winter and spring, but our program is not measured only by wins and losses. Our emphasis on participation, sportsmanship, community, as well as pursuing excellence, is a unique combination that characterizes Abbey athletics.

The sailing team won the New England Fleet Racing Championship for the second year in a row



Ed Kielb ’11 was selected All-EIL in tennis for 1st Singles

v Boys’ lacrosse finished 12-3 overall and won the EIL Championship

Winter Milestones

v Boys’ and girls’ swim teams both won the Providence Cup v Quent Dickmann ’10 broke his own School record in the 200 Free v Girls’ squash won their 3rd N.E. Class C Championship v Coach Corie McDermott was selected EIL Girls’ Squash Coach of the Year v Girls’ basketball won their 3rd consecutive EIL championship v Kathleen Timmons ‘10 was the EIL MVP and scored a career 1,398 points in her four Abbey seasons v Coach Lizzie Benestad was selected EIL Girls’ Basketball Coach of the Year

Spring Milestones





Coach Al Brown was selected U.S. Coach of the Year for the Eastern NE Region Prep Schools Division of U.S. Lacrosse Boys’ track won the Odell Invitational (out of nine schools)

Makonnen Jackman ’10 broke two school track and field records, in the 100 meters and high jump, and also won the high jump at the New England Division III Track and Field Championship Kathleen Timmons ’10 recorded her 100th goal in lacrosse

Congratulations to all the Abbey Athletes!

Top left: Kathleen Timmons ‘10 on her way to her career scoring record; Top right: Makonnen Jackman ’10 breaking the School track and field record in the high jump, previously set by Ignatius Maclellan ‘77 in 1975,while Gabrielle Rossi ‘11 looks on. Girls’ Varsity Squash Coach Corie McDermott (far right) was named Coach of the Year in the Eastern Independent League; the Abbey girls also won the New England Division C tournament and placed fourth at the Nationals in Division III.


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winter 2009-10

Boys’ Basketball

Girls’ Squash

Dom Bede Gorman Memorial Basketball Award: Chido Onyiuke ‘10

Coach’s Award: Anna Lopez ‘10

MIP: Donovan Reyes ‘11

Captains-Elect: Georgia Callahan ‘11 and Tara Tischio ‘11

Captains-Elect: Donovan Reyes ‘11 and Liam O’Farrell ‘11

Record: Overall 6-7 EIL 4-4 3rd place

Record: Overall 14-9 EIL 11-5

New England Class C Champions

MIP: Amelia Bradley ‘10

Girls’ Basketball The Pfeffer Cup: Kathleen Timmons ‘10 MIP: Akunna Onyiuke ‘12 Captains-Elect: Jasmin Amaral ‘11, Brigid Behan  ‘11, Abbey Shea ‘11 Record: Overall 18-5 EIL 12-0 Champions


Boys’ Ice Hockey The Andrew M. Hunt and Carol Meehan Hunt Boys’ Hockey Award: Sheamus Standish ‘11 MIP: Ryan Lohuis ‘10 Captains-Elect: Sheamus Standish ‘11, Garrett Behan ‘11, Danny Welch ‘11 Record: Overall 6-14 Girls’ Ice Hockey

Co-captain Quent Dickmann ‘10 was awarded the Coach’s Trophy and was elected to the 2010 EIL All-League team

The Andrew M. Hunt and Carol Meehan Hunt Girls’ Hockey Award: Genna Kyriakides ‘10 MIP: Kelly Plageman ‘12

Winter 2010 All-League Selections Boys’ Basketball Girls’ Basketball

Chido Oniyuke ‘10, Liam O’Farrell ‘11 Kathleen Timmons ‘10

Girls’ Ice Hockey

Genna Kyriakides ‘10 Casey Brown ‘12 (Hon. Mention)

Girls’ Squash

Tara Tischio ‘11, Ana Lopez ‘11

Coach’s Award (Girls): Nikki Beede ‘11

Boys’ Swimming

Sean Buckley ‘12, Nick Caron ‘10 Sep Clarkin ‘10, Quent Dickmann ‘10 Madison Hansen ‘10

MIP: Dorothy Dickmann ‘13

Girls’ Swimming

Jackie Wagner ‘12

Captains-Elect: Nikki Beede ‘11, Kara Lessels ‘11, Sean Buckley ‘12

Junior Varsity Awards

Captains-Elect: Catherine Shanahan ‘11, Casey Brown ‘12 Record: Overall 2-14-1 Swimming Coach’s Award (Boys): Quent Dickmann ‘10 MIP: Brendan Connolly ‘10

Record: Overall 4-8; Girls 1-3; Boys 0-2; Coed 3-3 Boys’ and Girls’: 1st Place Providence Cup Boys’ Squash Carlos Xavier Araujo ’96 Memorial Squash Award: Kyle Brown ‘10 MIP: Jeff Heath ‘12 Captains-Elect: Drake Bonin ‘11, Steven Vo ‘11 Record: 6-7

Boys’ JVA Basketball Boys’ JVB Basketball Girls’ JV Basketball Boys’ JV Squash Girls’ JV Squash GJVB Squash BJVB Squash Boys’ JV Ice Hockey Girls’ JV Ice Hockey Boys’ JV Swim Girls’ JV Swim

James McField ‘12 Ogochukwo Obijiofor ‘13 Ann Gallagher ‘13 Andrew Sgarro ‘11 Catherine Fairhurst ‘11 Julia Noble ‘13 Dan Aker ‘12 Tim McGuirk ‘11 Caitlin Villareal ‘12 Nick DeLieto ‘13 Claire Kelley ‘11

Visit our athletics photo gallery at www.


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spring 2010

Girls’ Tennis The Girls’ Tennis Coach’s Trophy: Katie Sgarro ‘11 MIP: Gadea Perez de Guzman ‘12 Captains-Elect: Georgia Callahan ‘11, Katie Sgarro ‘11 Overall record: 4-4 EIL: 4-4 Boys’ Track Coach’s Trophy: Makonnen Jackman ‘10 MIP: Young Hoon “Brian” Chung ‘12 Captain-Elect: Ryan Kim ‘11 Overall record: 7-4 EIL/SENE: 1st Place Odell Invitational The sailing team won the New England Fleet Racing Championship for the second year in a row. (from left) Catherine Shanahan ‘11, Mike Flanigan ‘11, Katia DaSilva ‘11, Grace Medley ‘11, Liz Dubovik ‘11, Chase Quinn ‘13, Bobby Savoie ‘10, and Lucas Adams ‘11


Baseball The Baseball Coach’s Trophy: Marc Nunes ‘10 MIP: Darren Colbourne ‘12 Captains-Elect: Liam O’Farrell ‘11, Billy Young ‘11, Mike McLaughlin ‘11 Overall record: 8-7 EIL: 5-2 Girls’ Golf The Golf Coach’s Trophy: Lauren Brodeur ‘10 MIP: Taryn Murphy ‘12 Captain-Elect: Taryn Murphy ‘12 Overall record: 1-4

Girls’ Track Coach’s Trophy: Salome Wilfred ‘10 MIP: Emily Kaufman ‘12 Captains-Elect: Jasmin Amaral ‘11, Francesca Bessey ‘11, Kaitlin Patton ‘11 Overall record: 8-3 EIL/SENE: 2nd Place Odell Invitational Junior Varsity Awards JV JV JV JV JV JV JV JV

Sailing Boys’ Lacrosse Baseball Girls’ Lacrosse Girls’ Track Boys’ Track Girls’ Tennis Boys’ Tennis

Sean Morrissey ‘11 Connor Kelley ‘12 James McField ‘12 Akunna Onyiuke ‘12 Julia Thompson ‘13 Will Parsons ‘12 Hadley Matthews ‘13 David Armenta ‘12

Boys’ Lacrosse

Spring 2010 All-League Selections

The Frost Family Trophy for Boys’ Lacrosse: Evan Sylvia ‘10 MIP: Jake Flynn ‘11 Captains-Elect: Nick Albertson ’11, Mitch Green ‘11, Morgan Green ‘11, Riley Kinnane ‘11 Overall record 12-3 EIL: 8-0 *EIL Champions US Lacrosse Coach of the Year: Al Brown

Baseball Liam O’Farrell ‘11, Marc Nunes ‘10, Chuck Weeden ‘10 Honorable Mention Pat Hannon ‘10, Owen Rischmann ‘10

Girls’ Lacrosse The Hannaford Family Trophy for Girls’ Lacrosse: Grace Popham ‘10 MIP: Meghan Harrington ‘11 Captains-Elect: Sam Theriault ‘11, Maddie Savoie ‘11 Overall record: 9-4 EIL: 7-1 Sailing The Robert Price Sailing Trophy: Bobby Savoie ‘10 MIP: Zach Hasselbring ‘10 Captains-Elect: Lucas Adams ‘11, Liz Dubovik ‘11 Record: 11-3 *NE Fleet Racing Champions/16th Place Nationals Softball The Softball Coach’s Trophy: Abby Shea ‘11 MIP: Allison Bolles ‘13 Captains-Elect: Abby Shea ‘11, Tara Tischio ‘11 Overall record: 7-7 EIL: 4-4 Boys’ Tennis The Boys’ Tennis Coach’s Trophy: Paolo Soriano ‘12 MIP: Alvaro Padilla ‘10 Captains-Elect: Ed Kielb ’11, Sean Buckley ‘12 Overall record 2-6 EIL: 2-3

Boys’ Lacrosse Honorable Mention

Softball Abby Shea ‘11, Karyssa Edwards ‘12 Honorable Mention Sarah Auer ‘12, Tara Tischio ‘11 Girls’ Lacrosse Caroline Kelly ‘10, Grace Popham ‘10, Kathleen Timmons ‘10, Caitlin Villareal ‘12 Honorable Mention Casey Brown ‘12, Maddie Savoie ‘11 Boys’ Tennis Ed Kielb ‘11 Honorable Mention Sean Buckley ‘12 Girls’ Tennis Honorable Mention Katie Sgarro ‘11 Track Boys’ Odell Invitational All-New England Track Girls’ Odell Invitational


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Nick Albertson ‘11, Mitch Green ‘11, John LeComte ‘10, Mike Rhea ‘10, Evan Sylvia ‘10 Matt Brigham ‘12, Thomas Hammatt ‘11

Young Hoon Chung ‘13, Ethan DaPonte ‘10, Makonnen Jackman ‘10, Chris Larson ‘10, Ryan Silva ‘10 Makonnen Jackman ‘10 - Division III Champion, High Jump Francessca Bessey ‘11, Amelia Bradley ‘10 Kaitlin Patton ‘11, Salome Wilfred ‘10


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Portsmouth Abbey is a community – a Monastic community – a School community (a group comprised of students/teachers, girls/boys, lay/religious, American/international, disadvantaged/affluent, athletes/artists, scholars/strivers). Together this assemblage forms the mélange that is our School. A Catholic Benedictine School in the Lord’s service; an institution based upon Reverence, Respect and Responsibility. Fundamental to each core pillar is the person, the individual. Amplifying what we are able to learn from one another is the fact that although Portsmouth is a relatively small community, our members are blessed with a wide array of backgrounds, talents, and gifts. Contributing to this mixture is Portsmouth Abbey School’s commitment to providing financial aid and merit scholarship support that help create opportunities for talented girls and boys to attend Portsmouth.

way to this goal. The need for scholarship and financial aid dollars is ever-growing, and Portsmouth Abbey continues to be as generous as possible with the aid it offers students each year. The School awards $3,100,000 in need and merit-based aid to 35 percent of the student body. Included in this total is $180,000 to support a Diman Scholar in each Form. The most prestigious scholarship offered by Portsmouth Abbey, the Diman Scholarship recognizes students of the highest caliber with a full scholarship for each year they are enrolled. As we look to expand the School’s endowed source of financial aid and scholarship support, we aim to fully endow the meritbased aid program. Members of the Portsmouth Abbey community have, over the years, been generous to the School’s endowment, with gifts in honor and memory of their classmates, favorite teachers and

PAYING IT FORWARD BY GIVING BACK... by Patrick J. Burke ‘86, Assistant Headmaster for Development One of the greatest gifts that can be given is to positively influence the life of another, especially a young person. This type of gift, particularly an educational opportunity, may change the life of the individual and alter the course of a family for generations. Portsmouth Abbey School’s 2003 Strategic Plan set as one of nine primary objectives that “As the premier Catholic boarding school in America, Portsmouth will recruit and retain students of high academic and personal potential whose families are attracted to the School because of its mission.” In furtherance of this goal, the plan called for the School to “Enroll students with strong academic, personal, athletic, and artistic qualities and create a geographically diverse student body.” In response to the School’s strategic plan a development initiative was undertaken to set specific goals for the various areas of campus and school life. As our capital campaign fundraising efforts focus on endowment fundraising, scholarship and financial aid support take center stage. Over the years, scholarship and financial aid dollars have been generously donated by members of the Portsmouth Abbey community. In fact, since 2004, 15 new scholarship funds have been created, and total dollars raised in that time for all of our scholarship endowments totals $4,210,000. The School’s goal is to add 9 million new dollars to the endowment in support of scholarship and financial aid, and we are well on our


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monks, and members of their families. With over 100 individually named funds within the School’s endowment, 77 are named endowed scholarships. This is a fantastic tribute to the connections made at Portsmouth Abbey. At the time of its 25th reunion, the class of 1982 formed two special funds to support Portsmouth and permanently recognize members of its class. The Class of 1982 Scholarship Fund recognizes the special connection these classmates have with each other and the School. At the same time, they also created The Michael H. Schuhmacher ‘82 Memorial Scholarship Fund, named for a classmate who had passed away since their graduation from Portsmouth. These funds have now become ways for the class to honor their relationships and their memories in perpetuity. Similarly, at the time of its 40th reunion, the Class of 1967 endowed the W. Barry McCoy Memorial Scholarship Fund in memory of fellow classmate Barry, who died tragically while a student at Portsmouth Abbey. The class has since their reunion continued to add to this special fund. Most recently, the John L. McCauley Scholarship Fund was created to honor the special coach, teacher and mentor whose impact on Portsmouth Abbey students is still talked about today. This fund and its creation provided a wonderful opportunity for the School community to gather with Coach McCauley and his family in October 2009 to pay tribute to a man who touched so many lives. Funds within the School’s endowment support artists and athletes, musicians and mathematicians, day stu-


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dents and boarders. The School is keenly interested in having an array of funds that nurture the plethora of students who call Portsmouth their school. In addition, in keeping with Portsmouth’s mission to teach reverence, respect and responsibility, there are funds, such as the Gladney Family Scholarship Fund, that support and recognize students who have previously attended a Catholic school, display strong appreciation for Portsmouth’s missions and demonstrate the capacity to be strong moral Catholic leaders. Over the last several years, Portsmouth Abbey has been fortunate to be the beneficiary of a few estate plans that have helped to create endowed scholarship funds. In 2007 we received a surprise telephone call from an attorney in New York alerting us to a gift that would, in the end, total $730,000 for a new scholarship fund. The donor, Madeleine Drexel Dahlgren Townsend,

future, a horizon that has no limit. It is impossible and frustrating to try to convey the gratitude I feel to the nameless people who have made my future possible because it is a feeling simply inexpressible b y words. Even if I met you, I would have no idea how to thank you or what to say. It means too much, it’s too much a part of who I am and what I have been given, and how moving and humbling it is to be helped by others and have no way to repay them. I hope that one day, whatever I become or do or make of my life, that at some point I will be able to give a student somewhere the gift that you have so generously given to me. It is ironic, and almost fitting of a truly Catholic education, that of all the people I owe so much, the ones I owe the most go unnamed and unmet.”

A Case for Scholarship Support grew to know many people at Portsmouth Abbey, including the monks, as she attended Mass in the Abbey Church during her summer vacations in Newport. Ms. Townsend was fond of the institution and the work taking place on campus. Her gift arrived fifty years after she made the provision in her estate, and is now providing crucial income for scholarships here at Portsmouth. Scholarship and financial aid dollars directly impact individuals and enable Portsmouth Abbey to offer its unique education to talented young people who would otherwise be unable to attend. Our students who receive the aid are also greatly appreciative of this support and we share the following words of thanks and appreciation.

Recipient of the Edward J. Soraghan Memorial Scholarship Fund: “At the Abbey I have grown from a shy bookworm to a school the final months of my senior year, I stand on the brink of almost limitless potential...The whole world has become attainable. It was you who made all of this possible. Without you, I would never have been able to attend the Abbey, and without the Abbey, I probably wouldn’t have even applied to college, let alone Princeton. Thank you for giving me a

Recipient of the W. Barry McCoy Memorial Scholarship Fund: “While I will not be so bold as to say that Portsmouth Abbey has ‘given’ me a soul, I will say that the school has augmented it. Indeed, I have become a better human being-one that is reasonable and charitable, one that does not need to be coerced into thought or good deeds. ...this education is for my very eternal existence. I have really appreciated these four years, because they have taught me how to appreciate all the rest of the years to follow.” Recipient of the Francisco A. Ferré ‘80 Memorial Scholarship Fund: “My whole life has changed because you believed in me and gave me a chance.” We are grateful for our many alumni, parents, parents of alumni and other friends who contribute to make these opportunities possible. As we look to create additional opportunities in the future, we hope you will consider “paying it forward” with a gift to one of our 77 scholarship funds or through the creation of your own special fund.


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MILESTONES Maeve Ann Grabert (left), daughter of Ryan Grabert ‘97 and Kyla Reagan Tavares, daughter of Lou Tavares ‘97

Summer Beatrice Kearney with mom, Susan, and Dad, Nick ‘86.

1998 A girl, Lucy to Katie (Rooney) and Stephen Sams April 2010 2000 A boy, Liam Richard Feeley, to Rich and Julia (Campagna) Feeley December 23, 2009 2004 A girl, Sofía Claire to Andrés and Christina Valenzuela


June 15, 2010

1985 A boy, Colin Thomas to Tom and Melanie Sollas January 2010


1986 A girl, Summer Beatrice to Nick and Susan Kearney February 23, 2010 Abigail Marie Forbes, daughter of Matt ’97 and Ann Marie ’96 Forbes

Below: Benton James, son of Kelsey (Scudder)’05 and Phil Davies

A girl, Maleah Ann to Leah (Quast) and Matthew Cole May 24, 2010


Marc Leandro to Lin Sorensen May 22, 2010

A girl, Abilgail Lily Corrigan to Nick and Erica Corrigan May 31, 2010 See page 61 for photo

A girl, Abigail Marie to Matt ’97 and Ann Marie ’96 Forbes December 10, 2009 1997 A girl, Maeve Ann to Ryan and Meghan Grabert January 10, 2010

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1996 & 1997


May 9, 2010

A boy, Vaughn Preston Paul and Courtney Moore November 9, 2009


Below: Maleah Ann, daughter of Matthew and Leah (Quast) Cole ‘07

to Kelsey (Scudder) and Phil Davies


A girl, Colleen Mary to Neil and Cathy Murphy January 3, 2010

Above: Liam Richard Feeley, son of Rich and Julia (Campagna) Feeley ‘00

A boy, Benton James


1995 Andrew Sacchetti to Jennifer Wawrzonek November 8, 2008 James Finton Wallace to Caitlin Marie Mahoney October 16, 2009 1996 Martin Eisner to Saskia Ziolkowski May 23, 2009 Sarah Hatch to Tim Straz August 2004 1997 Triona Mahon to Cedric Grivot October 24, 2009


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Kate Ferrara’s June wedding included: (from left) Mary Alexander ‘00, Andre DeRussy ‘00, Conor Casey ‘00, Susan Ferrara’05, Kate Ferrara Homes ‘00, Harper Homes, Margaret Ferrara ‘08, Maya Bacardi ‘00, Alexandra Hart ‘00 and John Jay Mouligné ‘01.

Shannon Reilly ‘98 and her husband, Peter Sensie, on their wedding day.


Sarah Staveley-O’Carroll ‘99 married Michael K. Matthews in March


Tamara Sreenivasan to Arjun Lal January 23, 2010

Nicole Eldredge ‘98 at her wedding to Lance Mogard in May

Nicole Eldredge to Lance Mogard May 7, 2010 Shannon Reilly to Peter Sensie May 16, 2009 Jason C. Weida to Kyley Wallace Lyon June 5, 2010 1999 Sarah Staveley-O’Carroll to Michael K. Matthews March 21, 2010 2000 Kate Ferrara to Harper Homes May 30, 2010 2001

Triona Mahon ‘97 and Cedric Grivot were married in October by Edward Cardinal Egan at Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in New York.

Karina Craig to John Hubert Wellington Pinder II April 24, 2010 Christopher Goddard Hornig to Veronica Aguilar January 16, 2010 2002 Michael Erwin to Angelica Duran June 12, 2010


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NECROLOGY Marilyn N. Abraham Grandmother of Bryan D. Abraham ’08 Patricia M. Beede Mother of Nicole M. Beede ’11 March 12, 2010 E. Milton Bevington, Jr. Father of Thomas “Ricky” Bevington ’71 May 20, 2010 Peter M. Bova Grandfather of Patrick Hannon ’10 April 24, 2010 Bernard V. Buonanno, Sr. Father of Vincent J. Buonanno ’62 Grandfather of Ronald W. Del Sesto, Jr. ’86 April 12, 2010 Francis W. Commiskey ’40 November 30, 2009 Irene E. Cooke Mother of Christopher R. Cooke ‘76 June 7, 2010 Charles A. de la Chapelle, Sr. ’41 February 7, 2010 Evelyn C. Chapman Former Staff Sister of Joseph Aguiar, Friend of Portsmouth Abbey March 16, 2010

Dr. John S. Hooley ’34 Father of John F. Hooley ’70 Grandfather of Kevan D. Hooley ’06 and Thomas P. Nullet ’07 January 10, 2010 David Edwardo Jarosiewicz Brother of Doel A. Jarosiewicz ’12 April 10, 2010 Christopher D. Kerr ’63 Brother of Colin ’67, John ’67, Gilbert ’71, and Gregory ’77 Kerr March 21, 2010 Efstathios H. Kyriakides Grandfather of Patty ’01, Katie ’02, Steve ’07, Genna ’10, and Tori ’11 Kyriakides January 4, 2010 Robert T. “Bucky” Lawless ’46 April 23, 2010 Raymond F. Lawrence Grandfather of Meredith T. Lawrence ’04 January 31, 2010 Dr. Mark P. Malkovich III Father of Mark IV ’78, Eric ’79 and Kent ’85 Malkovich May 30, 2010

Mark R. Skakel Son of George J. Skakel, Jr. ’41 † Uncle to Susan ’09 and Kate ’11 Skakel March 27, 2010 Suzanne R. Tracy Wife of James P. Tracy, Friend of Portsmouth Abbey April 12, 2010 Philip C. Walsh IV Brother-in-law to John ’40 †, Peter ‘41 and Robert ’48 † Flanigan Stepfather of Michael ’70 and Stephen ’73 McDonnell Uncle of Timothy ’75 and Robert ’83 Flanigan March 24, 2010 Clifford J. Wood ’40 February 18, 2010

Mathias T. “Mo” Oppersdorff ’55 January 26, 2010 James B. Sacchetti Father of Andrew J. Sacchetti ’95 July 1, 2009

Adam Fremantle Brother of Richard C. Fremantle ’54 October 30, 2009

James J. Salerno, Jr. Grandfather of O’Callahan (Callie) Taylor ’13 March 29, 2010

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Rita Angelica Scotti Sister of Nino “David” ’60 †, Ciro ’64, Francesco ’66, and Joseph ’72 Scotti Sister-in-law of Thomas F. Shevlin ’64 Niece of David D. Dwyer ’37 † February 25, 2010

Robert M. McAnerney ’41 February 11, 2010

Eleanor Dean Mother of Peter R. Dean ‘60 January 2, 2010


Adele G. Sands Wife of James Sands ’32 † Mother of William F. Sands ’69 September 30, 2009


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Mathias Thomas “Mo” Oppersdorff ‘55 Mathias “Mo” Oppersdorff ‘55 died January 26, 2010, after a 12-year battle with Parkinson’s disease. He was 74 years old. During his time at Portsmouth, Mo participated in soccer, sailing and fencing. He lived in St. Benet’s and listed the “back seat in chapel” as one of his likes and “alarm clocks” among his dislikes. After graduating from Portsmouth, Mo attended Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service and Fairfield University, from which he received his undergraduate degree, and earned a master’s degree in international affairs from American University. Mo’s good friend and classmate, Mark Power ‘55, remembers Mo’s linguistic talents among his many abilities: “[At Portsmouth] he was said to be tri-lingual (French, German and English) and the rumor was that he could learn a language after only a few weeks of glancing at a textbook.” Mark added: “At our 50th reunion, in 2005, most of us were follicularly challenged, somewhat overweight white men of a certain age wearing dark business suits. Not Mo; he wore tailored blue jeans and a white safari jacket, complete with an ascot, and he strongly resembled the youth he had been half a century earlier. He mentioned hunting elk with Michael Sheehan ‘55, and I suddenly remembered an episode on Prospect Street (Mark and Mo were roommates in Washington, D.C., in the late 1950s) when I came home to find Mo on the floor sighting down the long barrel of a .22 target pistol. To make a long story abruptly short, Mo had decided to amuse himself by shooting cockroaches as they scampered across the floor and he seemed quite puzzled when this behavior caused the other occupants of the house to seek refuge in the street.” After a brief foray into the world of banking in the 1950s, Mo became a celebrated adventurer and photographer, traveling the world but always returning to his family home in Matunuck, RI. He spent 18

years freelancing for Gourmet magazine, with 82 travel pieces to his credit. Wellknown photojournalist Mary Ellen Mark said of Mo’s work that it has “a beautiful quality... that is honest and direct.” Mo’s three photography books were published by Syracuse University Press. His work also appeared in GEO magazine, Natural History magazine, Diversion, Nikon World, Popular Photography, and Condé Nast Traveler and was featured in many one-man and group shows both locally and around the nation. Mo was forced into retirement due to his illness, but discovered the joys of the pinhole camera – a wooden box with a tiny hole in it, and no lens shutter or viewfinder: “I like the utter simplicity of it and the feeling of getting back to the origins of photography.” Mo was a member of the Society of the Cincinnati, the oldest military society in continuous existence, of which one can be a member only if one is a direct descendant of an officer in George Washington’s 1776 Continental Army. Born in Boston in 1935, he was the son of Mathias, a Count from an aristocratic family from Silesia (formerly a part of Austria), and Katherine, whose ancestors came to this country on the Mayflower. Mo spent his early years in Europe until the 1930s, when his family fled out of concern over Hitler’s rise; they eventually settled in Matunuck. He is survived by his brother, Hans Rolle Oppersdorff, and his family of Devon, England. On May 8, 2010, friends gathered at the Matunuck Barn in Wakefield, RI, to celebrate Mo’s life and art. Portsmouth Abbey School mourns Mo’s passing, and our thoughts are with his family and many friends.


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Portrait of Mo from his book, Under the Spell of Arabia.


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Dr. Mark P. Malkovich, III Dr. Mark P. Malkovich, III, father of Mark IV ‘78, Eric ‘79, and Kent ’85, died in North Branch, MN, in a single-vehicle car accident on Sunday, May 30. Mr. Malkovich was 79 years old. Dr. Malkovich specifically chose to move to Portsmouth, RI, in 1974 so that his sons could attend Portsmouth Abbey. That decision proved to be a boon for Aquidneck Island when, in 1975, Dr. Malkovich was asked to take over the Newport Music Festival, a then-struggling event that, under his assiduous direction and care, has since grown into one of the most prestigious classical music celebrations in the world. Known for his larger-than-life personality, Dr. Malkovich’s name became synonymous with the festival. The 2010 event, held in July, was dedicated to his memory. Mark IV, who had taken over the running of the festival but who still worked closely with his father, told the Boston Globe that his father “… cared about people and was tireless at keeping in touch with friends and family. He was sort of the hub of the wheel. Everyone radiated toward him.’’ Considered an expert in chamber music, Dr. Malkovich amassed a rare music collection of more than 15,000 records and discs from around the world, focusing mostly on pianists. Dr. Malkovich himself was considered an accomplished pianist. He was a former president of the U.S. Chopin Foundation, former director of the Palm Beach Festival, was a popular lecturer and TV and radio


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personality, and served as the sole American judge at numerous international piano and violin competitions Dr. Malkovich was recognized for his contributions to the world of music, having been awarded an honorary doctorate of music from Salve Regina University, an honorary doctorate of fine arts from the University of Rhode Island, and an honorary doctorate in music from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. He was inducted in to the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame in 2000. “Mark Malkovich was an internationally respected music impresario, a nurturer of young musical talent, and a presenter without equal,” said Randall Rosenbaum, executive director of the Rhode Island State Arts Council. “He was a leader and visionary, and we here in Rhode Island have suffered a great loss. Mark touched many people through his work with the Newport Music Festival.” Mark IV wanted the Portsmouth community to know that his father “was a devout Catholic and had attended Mass and received Communion at the church in his hometown of Eveleth, MN, the day he was killed.” Dr. Malkovich is survived by his wife, Joan, and their four children, Kent, Mark Jr., Erik and Cara. He was buried in Newport, RI. The Portsmouth Abbey family extends its sincere sympathies to all of Dr. Malkovich’s family.


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Bernard V. Buonanno, Sr. Bernard V. Buonanno, Sr., father of Vincent J. Buonanno ‘62 and grandfather of Ronald W. Del Sesto, Jr., ‘86, died on April 12, 2010, a month shy of his 101st birthday. Bernard attended Classical High School in Providence, RI, and returned there to teach after graduating from Brown University in 1931. He taught Latin and romance languages, and was a track and football coach and a guidance counselor. He led Classical to its first undefeated team football season in 1943, and also ran a well-known summertime, preseason football camp for the school on Cape Cod. He joined the family business in 1945 when he became general manager of Atlantic Chemical Company, a company his brother Joseph founded. Bernard later founded New England Container as an offshoot of Atlantic Chemical, and served as its chairman until 1998. Although he never returned to teaching, his interest in education did not wane. In the 1950s he was elected to serve on the Providence School Committee and was involved in the creation of the Fox Point Elementary School. He served several term appointments by successive Governors to the New England Board of Higher Education. He was also appointed to the first Rhode Island Board of Regents for Education.

Bernard’s interest in sports also persisted, and he continued to coach and referee football. He was an avid golfer and played into his 90’s. He was honored by the Classical Alumni Association, the Rhode Island Football Coaches Hall of Fame and the Gridiron Club for his years of work on behalf of Classical High and for his dedication to education and coaching. Vin Buonanno ‘62 said of his father: “Although he left teaching at only 35 years old and went into business, the fondest memories of my father’s life were in his years teaching languages and coaching, and he remained involved in education as a volunteer for the rest of his life. I think it was in the 1950s that he was one of the leaders of the battle to preserve Latin and Greek at Classical High School in Providence, which were in danger of being removed from the curriculum due to their uselessness. Although he was proud of his experience at Brown University and his remaining there for a masters of arts degree in romance languages, he had the greatest fondness for his high school, Classical High School, which I think, in many ways in the public school sphere, was similar to Portsmouth in its emphasis on foreign languages, English compositions, and an austerity of style as an educational institution. I was very happy in my years at Portsmouth, and it was just right for me. He was always proud that he had helped guide me to go there.”


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Bernard was predeceased by his wife, Josephine (Antenucci) Buonanno, and is survived by three children: Bernard, Jr., Bettina Buonanno Del Sesto, and Vincent. He was the father-in-law of Linda Smith Buonanno and the late Martha Dodd Buonanno, and was the grandfather of 11: Helena Buonanno Foulkes, Bernard V. Buonanno, III, Carolyn Buonanno Chase, Jody Buonanno Shue, Margaret Buonanno Lynch, Cristina Del Sesto Morrison, Ronald W. Del Sesto Jr., Justin T. Del Sesto, Vincent J. Buonanno, Jr., Esther V. Buonanno, and Julia T. Buonanno. He was the great-grandfather of 21. He also leaves his sister, Gloria Radway. He was the brother of the late Joseph Buonanno and the late Norma Sohegan. The Portsmouth Abbey community expresses its heartfelt condolences to the Buonanno family, and our thoughts and prayers continue to be with them all.


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Dr. John S. Hooley ‘34 Dr. John S. Hooley ‘34 died in his sleep January 10 in Naples, FL. John came to the Abbey (then Portsmouth Priory School) from Rockville Centre, NY.

Stanley Pierson Lewis ‘42 Stanley Pierson Lewis ‘42 died peacefully on July 31, 2009, in Fairfield, CT. Mr. Lewis was born February 18, 1924, the oldest son of Stanley R. Lewis and Grace Thorne Pierson. He was the former husband of Julia Nicholson Beals. He is survived by two brothers, John T. Lewis and Lewis P. Lewis; by his four loving children, Julie Lewis Duke of Providence, RI, Anne Lewis Drake of Riverside, CT, Amy Lewis Doering of Darien, CT, and Douglas Lewis of Bridgeport, CT, and by six grandchildren. Mr. Lewis graduated from Brown University in the class of 1946. Like many of his generation, his university studies were interrupted by military service. Mr. Lewis completed Naval Officer Training in Rhode Island and was an officer with the PT boats, serving in the Pacific. He was very proud of his service in the fast and aggressive PTs. Mr. Lewis had been employed by Shell Oil Company and by Bowne & Co., and had also been the manager of the Olympic Towers in New York City. He loved to sail, having grown up sailing SS yachts at the Westhampton Yacht Squadron in Westhampton Beach, NY. He was an avid sailor, racing his Etchells yacht named Ruffian as a member of Indian Harbor Yacht Club in Greenwich, CT, where he was the oldest skipper in the fleet. With his wife and children he was a long time resident of Southport, CT. In later years he resided in Westport, CT, and Vero Beach, FL. He was the proud grandson of Lewis E. Pierson, Chairman of the Irving Trust Company from 1916 to 1935. He was also a distant relative of Abraham Pierson, one of the founders of Yale University and his father Abraham Pierson, one of the original settlers of Newark, NJ.


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John, an honor student and athlete at the Priory, served as a prefect. He went on to Cornell University, where he compiled an outstanding academic record and lettered in varsity lacrosse and diving as a member of the Class of 1938. John graduated in 1942 from Cornell University Medical College and interned at Bellevue Hospital in New York City. From 1943-45, he served in the Army, rehabilitating wounded soldiers in England. He finished his medical training after the war, and married Betty Grunwald, a registered nurse, in 1949. John practiced general surgery for almost forty years, beginning in Rockville Centre, NY, followed by seven years in Sigourney, IA, and twenty-three more in Brevard County, FL, where he retired in 1988. A board surgeon, he was also a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and of the International College of Surgeons. John was a tremendous diagnostician as well as a skilled and inventive surgeon. His goals were always excellence in the work and patients’ well-being, goals he consistently achieved. A hands-on physician who made morning and evening hospital rounds throughout his professional life, including weekends, he was ahead of his time in getting his patients up and walking as soon as possible after surgery, which helped them resume normal life faster and with fewer complications. He never lost a patient in all the years he practiced. Despite a demanding schedule as a sole practitioner, John had wide and varied interests, including sailing, an enthusiasm he acquired at the Priory. Two years of schooling in France as a boy, in addition to making him fluent in French, inspired a lifelong interest in history, a passion for travel, and an appreciation for fine food. John and Betty toured the world, beginning with a trip to Japan in 1962; their

travels took them to India, Nepal, China, Egypt, Turkey, Greece, South America, Russia, and Europe. John delighted in exploring foreign cities; he always knew enough of the language to get around, see the sights, and meet the people. The spirit of inquiry and the attention to detail that distinguished John as a doctor were the essence of the man; he was endlessly curious and tireless in seeking answers to questions of all kinds. John’s knowledge was truly encyclopedic-no fact, especially if the topic was history, science, or mathematics, was outside his range of reference, and he particularly enjoyed throwing obscure, unexamined, surprising, or overlooked information into conversation. In addition to his wife of sixty years, Betty G. Hooley, John leaves: five children, Deirdra H. McAfee, John F. Hooley ‘70, Priscilla H. Nullet, Richard M. Hooley, and Alan P. Hooley; sons-in-law James B. McAfee and Dr. Francis R. Nullet, and daughter-in-law Begoña E. Hooley; nine grandchildren, Kevan Hooley ‘06 and Thomas Nullet ‘07, as well as Charlotte, Andrew, and John McAfee, Michael and Matthew Nullet, and Gwendolyn and Corwin Hooley; and one great-grandchild, James Garrett. Those who knew John well miss him deeply, as do the many friends whose company he enjoyed so much, and the hundreds of patients he saved, cured, or helped. The Portsmouth Abbey community extends its condolences to John’s entire family.


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Dick Cooley and his wife enjoy the outstanding women’s choir at St. James Cathedral in Seattle.

41  I Alan Burrell won’t be attending alumni weekend this year but looks forward to 2011, the 70th reunion for the class of ’41. Alan may be reached at alanburrell.1@ The Alumni Office was saddened to learn of the death of Robert M. McAnerney. Bob passed away in Naples, FL, on February 11. A memorial service was held for him on Saturday, June 12, at St. Aloysius Church in New Canaan, CT, followed by a reception at The Wee Burn Country Club in Darien.

51  I Bill Ruckelshaus spent an enjoyable mid-winter vacation in California with his family.

54  I Blase Reardon enjoyed a recent return to Portsmouth’s campus. Blase visited the School to meet with Director of Operations Paul Jestings and tour the wind turbine.

55  I


Jim Bell and his wife, Holly, have welcomed their 14th and 15th grandchildren (but who’s counting?). They have recently bought a home in Tucson, AZ, but will continue to spend summers in Santa Fe, NM. Jim’s company, EPE Corporation, recently had a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new manufacturing plant in Manchester, NH. Jim Bell, Jr. is now running the company - it is growing nicely. Joe ’90 and Chris ’92 Bell are both doing well. “I have shot my age in golf the last two years - but have had trouble maintaining such lofty results on a steady basis,” says Jim. “Other than golf, I keep very busy with some charity work, reading, angel investing and doing some committee work for our Country Club (Las Campanas). We have had some contact with the Rosemary and Peter Fagan, Buck O’Leary ’56 and Jim Conzelman ’56.”

56  I Jim McConnell divides his time between Vero Beach, FL, where David Fitzsimons and he belong to the same club, and Boulder, CO, in the summer. “It’s a matter of loading Margot (a corgi), Betsy (a wife), my golf clubs (an obsession) and assorted stuff into the car and migrating according to the season,” reports Jim. “We have 5 children and 12 grandchildren between us (Betsy, that is) so it’s always somebody’s birthday or something. I’ve been fully retired for 10 years, am creaky but otherwise healthy and would love to see anybody who happens to be in either of my neighborhoods.” Rev. Joe Healey, M.M. extends a warm “Hello from Tommy Healey’s ’60 home in New Jersey. I am back in the USA and just participated in our Princeton University Class of 1960 Fiftieth Reunion. Back in September, 1956, three of us from the then Portsmouth Priory School started our Freshman Year at Princeton. Our 2010 reunion was wonderful, and the organizers kept me busy.” Among Father Joe’s contributions to the Princeton reunion were: “My Road Less Traveled By – A Memoir,” A “Welcome” and “Reflections” at the Princeton University Class of 1960 Fiftieth Reunion Memorial Service, and a Homily delivered at the University’s Aquinas Institute - Newman Center.

57  I John Belt shared a little news about himself & family: John and his wife, Mary Jane, have a new grandchild, Aidan Belt Alsheimer, who was born 9/24/09. Amanda has resumed work at Marymount School as the math coordinator for the lower school and her husband is head of the LCDX trading desk at Goldman Sachs. Laura Belt is finishing her eighth course towards the Real Property Administrator designation and working with John in NYC commercial property management & brokerage in the family firm. “This has been a big help during the current turbulent financial times,” says John. “Otherwise all of the family is employed and healthy.”

59  I Charlie Donahue reports, “On January 29, I received an honorary doctor’s degree from the University of Paris II (PanthéonAssas). The ceremony was a gas and a half, but long. There were nine honorees, each of whom got a five-minute introduction and had to give a ten-minute talk. Add to that speeches by M. le President and M. le Vice-chancellor, and a couple of musical interludes, and you can do the math.”

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Peter Dean and his wife were just gifted with their fourth grandchild. A boy!!! Their third and last daughter, Colleen, will be getting married this July. Frederick J. “Rick” Wilson III, former publisher of the Narragansett Times and founder of the South County Independent, was inducted into the Rhode Island Journalism Hall of Fame on Friday, May 7. Tom Miner has been retired for the past 5 years following a career in environmental advocacy. “I directed a regional land use group in the Catskills, the Catskill Center for Conservation and Development during the 1980s, and co-directed the Connecticut River

Dominic Corrigan ‘59 welcomed the latest of his 8 grandchildren - Abigail Lily Corrigan, joining brothers Matthew (6), Connor (6), and Ryan (2)


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Charlie Donahue ‘59 received an honorary doctor’s degree from the University of Paris II (Panthéon-Assas).


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Tom Miner ‘60 with his wife, Whitty Sanford, as they hiked out of the Grand Canyon after a 7-day raft trip on the Colorado with their family

Watershed Council with my wife, Whitty Sanford, during the 1990s until I retired in 2005,” reports Tom. “Whitty and I have been married for 27 years and have four boys, two each, from our previous marriages. We are good friends with my first wife, Betsy Cornwall.” After graduating from Portsmouth, Tom went to Princeton where he received a B.A. degree cum laude in art history. He then served in the Navy and saw two tours off Vietnam. After his discharge, he worked as a freelance photographer in the New York City area, and still receives royalties from his photos of the 1969 Woodstock Festival. In 1975 he decided to change careers and went to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where he graduated with a M.S. in Environmental Studies. “Whitty and I are in the process of renovating an 1820 farm house in the village of Shelburne Falls, MA. When completed, we will enjoy one-floor living and be in walking distance of markets, restaurants, galleries and a 19th century theater that has music, movies and occasional digital broadcasts of MET concerts. Life is good.”

61  I Bill Ewing checked in to say, “Lynn and I are living on the water near Brunswick, Maine. Life is good.” They have three children and three grandchildren who visit occasionally. Bill and Lynn are happy to entertain classmates who are passing by.


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62  I Russell J. MacMullan will be serving as the Interim Head of School for the 201011 academic year at the Buckingham Friends School in Lahaska, PA. Buckingham was founded in 1794 and is one of the 12 oldest continuously operating schools in the United States.

63  I Peter McCaffery was honored as one of the 2010 Boston Educators of the Year on Monday, June 21. He teaches at Boston Arts Academy. George Fowler has a new literary translation – available on Amazon. com – called Riddles of Belief...and Love: A Story. The book is by author Lin Zhe, a Chinese novelist and screenwriter. Two Chinese television series have been based on this novel, her first to appear in English. George is a freelance translator of four Asian languages who lived and worked in Asia for 30+ years. His recent translation of the classic Indonesian Malay novel, Sitti Nurbaya, is a forthcoming publication by Lontar in Jakarta. George and John Gould dined with Jamie MacGuire ’70 in February at Wild Ginger in Seattle. A note from Frank Gilloon: “I miss PP a/k/a The Abbey School: Red, Rat, Moe, doc, La Petite Flur. We were quite the crew: exceptional in higher education, business and vocational endeavors. As Barnites:

Bill Ewing ‘61 and one of his three grandchildren

varsity letter in wrestling and JV letter in soccer. Jane Wyman could not have had a better reception than the one given by our Class of ‘63 crew. No better way to get to Bristol than the way our Class of ’63 crew did it. And get this, one of our crew (yours truly) had to part PP early for not cutting the mustard, but was told by Dom Damian that he was the best-improved student in the history of the School; then went home to skip a grade. This is not just me bragging us up! But the best was done by none other than Dom Leo van Winkle, “The Flea”, during our class graduation. Our class was taught by one who was at Los Alamos making the bomb; a linguist in seven languages including ancient Greek; a Jewish man who became a Dom and a math whiz at PP; a man who was offered the highest salary to play shooting forward for the St. Louis Hawks alongside Bob Pettit, but became a Dom and athletic director at PP; a man who knew every maitre d’ in NYC, and was a librarian as a Brother at PP. No, I am afraid our class was not ‘taught,’ but made into works of art by those men at PP.” Frank lives in Dubuque, IA, and works at Blair & Fitzsimmons, P.C. John Cadley checked in to say, “I was glad to see my old friend Jim Roy comment on the passing of Dr. Brown, the history professor we shared in our time at Portsmouth together. Unlike Jim, I was not one of Dr. Brown’s star pupils. I wasn’t


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anybody’s star pupil. I was the class clown. I was the student of whom it was always said, ‘We know he can do the work if he’ll just settle down and concentrate.’ It is only through the passing of many years that I understand why I didn’t concentrate. At the time I went to Portsmouth I had a bad stutter and my biggest fear was being called on in class to give an answer or read a passage from a book. I learned that if I didn’t know the answer, they wouldn’t call on me. So I made it a point to not know the answer. My subterfuge didn’t always work. Some teachers called on me anyway, and Dr. Brown was one of them. One day in particular has always stayed in my memory. Dr. Brown called on me and I began to stutter. There was a snicker from the back of the room. Dr. Brown closed his book and put it on the desk with a firmness which said that at this moment there was something more important to learn than history. George Bernard Shaw said, ‘It is easy, terribly easy, to shake a man’s faith in himself. To take advantage of that to break a man’s spirit is devil’s work.’ That was the gist of Dr. Brown’s remarks to the class – not that he believed the snickerer was the devil. I’m sure he had as much compassion for him as he did for me. But he went on at some length, with great eloquence and feeling, to explain that laughter at another’s weaknesses is behavior of the most contemptuous kind and not worthy of the type of men Portsmouth was committed to developing. No one had ever shown me such kindness and understanding. I worked like a dog in Dr. Brown’s history class for the rest of the year and although I have forgotten most of it by now, I have never forgotten Dr. Brown. What he taught that day was more important than history.”

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66  I Greg Darling continues to teach in New York City on an adjunct basis at Fordham University (English, Theology departments) and at John Jay College of Criminal Justice (English Department). May divine blessings be with his classmates and with the whole Portsmouth community.

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Steve Bremner is the executive vice president of The Kennedy Group. He and Tom Cunningham have bicycled together extensively, including on the Tour de France.

Tom Lonergan is very pleased to have both his daughters attending Portsmouth this fall: Teresa, Class of 2011 and Elisa, Class of 2014. Todd Stanton majored in Greek at Berkeley and has been painting ever since. He lives in a garret in Portrero Hill, San Francisco, and recently gave Jamie MacGuire ‘70 a tour of the collection at SF MOMA.

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Michael Kolowich assumed the role of executive chairman of KnowledgeVision Systems Incorporated, a Massachusetts company that markets the popular KnowledgeVision software tools for creating on-demand, online presentations. Prior to his role as founder and executive producer at DigiNovations, he was CEO of Individual Incorporated, co-founder of NewsEdge Corporation, president of AT&T New Media, founder and president of Ziff-Davis Interactive (ZDNet), founding publisher of PC/Computing Magazine, and chief marketing officer of Lotus Development Corporation. Mike will continue as the executive producer at DigiNovations. Daniel M. Hadley received a master’s degree from the University of Rhode Island. Nion McEvoy and Joe Tobin ’71 co-hosted a dinner at Spruce in San Francisco for the DeVec-


Stryker McGuire is editor of LSE Research, a new magazine at the London School of Economics, among others things, including his work for Newsweek. Cary Washburn recently moved from Mexico to Seattle and is the finance manager of the University Bookstore. Stryker McGuire‘65


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chis that attracted an enthusiastic turnout, including Don Schissel, Todd Stanton ’71, Keith Barnes ’73, Mark Mesinger ’72, Jim Sturdevant ’65 and Jerome Crowley ’57.

Mark Mesinger and his family traveled from Orlando and San Francisco to meet up with the rest of the clan to sail in the 2010 FIGAWI Hyannis-to-Nantucket Race. They chartered a boat out of Newport and sailed for a week. Three generations were on board, led by the Admiral, Fred Mesinger, a spring chicken at 80, to win the class H division. “Not bad for a bunch of first timers,” says Mark. “On another note,” Mark reports, “Chuck Crowley got married and is living in Chatham. All is well and we hope all of you are, too.” Robert Bloomingdale’s film on Sammy Davis Jr. has been put on hold, and he is pursuing several other movie projects. He and Justine live in Pacific Palisades.

73  I Tom Anderson writes, “I received word from O’Bannon Cook that his son, 1st Lieutenant Christopher Cook,USMC (24), has recently deployed to Afghanistan, and he and his wife, Charlotte, and Chris’ sisters, Melissa (28), Jessica (26), and Rebecca (22) would appreciate your keeping their son/brother in your thoughts and prayers for a safe return. We are thankful to have sons and daughters who serve our country, and our foremost concern is always for their well-being and safety.” Jose Delgado checks in to say, “At this stage in my life I am finding time to enjoy some pleasures that I can still do. Perhaps these activities may not be an option for me in a decade? I enjoy bringing my kids


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José Delgado ‘73

org). We have been going to Ghana and Senegal each year to restore vision in the blind where there is no hope otherwise. The Presbyterian Church in Ghana hosts us each year and the Peace Corps does the same in Senegal. Tom Anderson was our first generous benefactor. Thank you Tom!!” (Turn to page 28 to read Tom’s interview with Don.) Andy Grant continues in the equities business and remains in close contact with Michael Frawley ’72, who is still trekking in Yosemite each summer and recently went back to college to study marine biology.

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to do things that bring out the fear factor in them!” Don Macdonald provides a family update: “What I would like to share with you is that Meg is graduating from Williams June 6, Ian loves Santa Clara, Ali is getting her M.S. at the Pratt Institute (check out her web site, Don is a lawyer with Venable in NY, and Lore is still the heroine of the Horizons Program. She has dedicated her life to educating and enriching disadvantaged children. After multiple missions to the third world, my medical practice formed a non-profit (www.RightToSightAndHealth.

Bob Risko was recently elected treasurer of the Boston chapter of the Special Libraries Association. Bob is a second-year doctoral student in library and information science at Simmons College, where he also works as a research associate. A 2009 recipient of a Jacqueline and Marshall Kates Scholarship, he is especially interested in measuring differential outcomes between face-to-face and distance education in LIS.

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Tim Flanigan is a candidate for Holy Orders as a permanent deacon in the diocese of Rhode Island. His class of candidates pledged their continued commitment to

Bishop Tobin and to study for the permanent diaconate during a Mass and Call to Candidacy celebrated at the Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul. Rev. Luke Travers, O.S.B. sends the following, “About a year and four months ago, I was hired to be a financial consultant for a monastery down in Richmond, Virginia.  They are a small house, with some 11 monks, but they run a high school that has been there for about one hundred years.  I enjoyed my work there and then they turned a financial corner of some significance and I thought my work there was done.  Then, mid-April, I received a phone call from the Abbot President of our American-Cassinese Congregation, asking me to assume more responsibility for the place.  While there were some bumps in the road (the Abbot President who asked me to do this job came down with cancer and a new one has been elected to take the previous one’s place), on June 4th I became the non-residential Canonical Administrator of Mary Mother of the Church Abbey in Richmond, Virginia.  While I don’t have to move there, I now spend several hours a day dealing with their issues and will be driving back and forth every six to eight weeks to spend some three to four days there.  So I have become a carpetbagger!  I love Richmond, and also feel this is a monastery with some potential.  The school is a military school (can you believe me in charge of that?), and our new headmaster is a 33-year-old Iraq war veteran who won an award for physical courage while in Iraq.  I’m excited for the challenge. I’m putting my trust in God as always and what is meant to be will turn out.  Keep me in your prayers.  Otherwise, my work at St. Mary’s Abbey here in Morristown, New Jersey, stays the same: business office, American history teacher, sub-prior of monastery.  I love every day!”

76  I Rick Sullivan has been living in Brattleboro, VT, for the past 15 years after a 15-year stay in northern California. The return to New England coincided with the rediscovery of his love of tennis and ice hockey. He currently plays at the local Brattleboro Outing Club on a USTA Senior Don Macdonald ‘73 and his family (from left): Don, Ali ‘02, Donald, Lore, Ian ‘08 and Meg ‘06.


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Peter Lynch ‘81 spent time with Dom Philip Wilson on his visit to the Abbey this past spring. With him were his two sons, Dominic, (far left) and Gabriel (far right).

men’s team during the summer months, while the hockey passion has shifted from playing to officiating. During the Fall/Winter months he has been officiating High School ice hockey throughout Vermont and this past January was selected to officiate the Abbey boys’ varsity game versus Vermont Academy in Saxton’s River, Vermont. Unfortunately, despite a valiant effort, the Abbey boys fell to a very strong VA team. In case any of his old teammates were wondering, prep school hockey is amazingly faster and more physical than when we played all those years ago. Tim Carey is in the construction management business and lives with his wife and children in Pasadena, CA.

77  I Jonathan Hunter-Kilmer has discovered Portsmouth Abbey’s online community. He reports, “Since I found out about this online community, I’m enjoying connecting with schoolmates and classmates.” Check out Jon’s Facebook page. Jon’s older daughter, Margaret, is now approaching 27.

78  I Harry Hagerty and Jamie MacGuire ’70 had dinner in Las Vegas, during which Harry remembered being walked to St.

David’s every day by an older boy in his Park Avenue apartment building, Jamie’s cousin, Father Luke Travers ’75.

79  I Alex Mikulich and his wife, Kara, celebrated their 23rd anniversary on June 27 in New Orleans where they have enjoyed overflowing culinary, musical, and carnival delights the past two years. Alex writes, “We are thriving! Kara is a grant writer for the social ministries of the Jesuit province. Our daughter, Katie, is about to turn 12 and just made a New Orleans travel soccer team – a celebration of her prowess at forward. She is also a gifted writer and dancer. Our son, Tyler, excels at math and loves building and destroying all kinds of things – imagine that! He is about to turn ten and is a standout pitcher as well – no easy task where his peers walk most batters. I am a senior research fellow on race and poverty at the Jesuit Social Research Institute, Loyola University New Orleans. I have been integrating research, advocacy, and teaching on race and poverty in Mississippi and Louisiana. I have been speaking extensively on white privilege and racism (throughout the country) and also facilitate racial justice workshops for Pax Christi USA. I am also working on my second book. You can find my latest work about the Gulf oil spill at jsri/ and my prayer for healing of the Gulf. Class of ‘79: Join me for some music and gumbo in the Crescent City or give me a call!”

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Kim Salvo-Hernas ‘98 (from left), Talia Resendes ‘98, Tina (Reyna) Williams ‘98 & Leslie Heller ‘98 met up in Vegas in March to celebrate turning thirty and fifteen years of friendship.

Col. Fitz-John Fitzpatrick is serving his country for another six-month tour in Iraq. He is helping U.S. Coast Guard at Port of Umm Qasr, a port city in southern Iraq. John Stebbins writes, “My wife, Denise, and I have been for 15 years this month. We have two girls, Theresa, age 10 and Christina, age 7. After teaching at the high school level for 14 years, my favorite subject to teach was advanced placement calculus. I have decided to expand my marketability. I am getting a master’s degree in mathematics at California State


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University at Channel Islands. Thereafter hope to be employed as a college math teacher. Whether I continue at the high school where I am now teaching depends on whether my schedule would permit it.” Ed Coderre’s company, The Digital Ark (, has relocated from Newport to Providence to meet growing business requirements including: faster internet speeds for online database services and e-commerce solutions, and a professionally renovated mill building with 15’ ceilings for a state-of-the-art photo and digitization studio.

81  I Peter Lynch came back for a visit to the Abbey this past spring with his wife, Gabrielle, his mother-in-law, and his 2 sons, Dominic and Gabriel. He later wrote to us to say, “The day was a perfect New England day; my family and I enjoyed walking around the campus, and I have to say that not so much has changed that I felt out of place (strange after 29 years). Nothing bittersweet about the changes, and that is a testament to the orderly way in which additions are made to campus. It was fun to take the boys down to the boathouse and pick for shells. I used to do that from time to time when I went to school there.  I also pointed down the train tracks and told them that we used to walk along them to a pizza place near a crossroads for pizza on Saturday nights, near that old


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Phil Yazbak ‘81 (center) at the Boston Marathon, running for the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation, joined by friends Connor and Mark Chelsky.

Kaiser aluminum plant (can’t remember the name of the pizza place). Anything to get away from mystery meat!” Peter also got to sit for a while with Dom Philip who was his housemaster.  Phil Yazbak reported that he completed the 2010 Boston Marathon in April: “Running for the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF), I was joined by friends Connor and Mark Chelsky and my brother-in-law, Steve Pratt; a large group of supporters from the MMRF was also along the course. Attached is a pic after the finish, with Connor and Mark trying to pretend that they are not actually holding me upright! I managed to finish within 2 hours of the winners (and about 3 minutes slower than last year), and I am very pleased to report that the collective generosity of family and friends raised $17,287 for the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation this year, bringing my two-year total to $28,887.”

82  I Christian Louis moved to Atlanta and is providing consulting services to private equity companies. His kids are young (7, 3 and 1) “and that keeps me young,” says Christian. A note from Jacques Pages: “Well folks, I am attempting a website,, as a continuation of my first book. It is slated to open on September 28, 2010. It will be done with Joomla 1.6, I hope, a web language


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developed in Europe (Germany), and is still in Beta form, so we’ll see!” Bill Burns is executive director, co-founder and chief designer of San Diegobased M Ship. He recently unveiled the Stiletto, a project for the Navy. Stiletto is a fast, stealthy ship that will be ideally used in combating terrorism, smugglers and piracy. It was dubbed a “Batmobile on water”due to its sleek, tough and modern design. The Stiletto can reach a top speed of 50 knots (57.8 mph) and can keep close to shore, where it is difficult for larger Navy ships to patrol.

84  I Samuel Casey Carter has been asked by CfBT Education Trust, a registered charity headquartered in the United Kingdom, to launch and lead their U.S. business. Consistent with CfBT’s worldwide mission to provide education for public benefit, CfBT USA will operate public charter schools and provide education support services across the country based on CfBT’s research into global best practice. “I look forward to sharing our plans with you in the days ahead. In the meantime, you can learn more about CfBT at: www.cfbt. com,” says Casey. “I continue to serve as a senior fellow at the Center for Education Reform, and I am very excited about a new book due out this November from Corwin Press entitled: On Purpose: How Great School Cultures Form Strong Character.”

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Francisco “Paxti” Elizalde is managing director of ELRO Corporation and vice president of its consumer goods business unit. He is owner and president of Bambu Retail Ventures, Inc., a subsidiary of ELRO Corporation. Bambu is the exclusive distributor in the Philippines of the brands Grendha, Ipanema, Rider, Dupe, and will soon introduce the Ed Hardy brand. His other business affiliations are ELRO Trading Corporation (food distribution and fastfood), ELRO Land Corporation (real estate development) and Bais Multi Farms (agribusiness). Even with a busy schedule, he leaves the office by 5pm to exercise and be available when his children come home from school. He has been an avid runner for 25 years and is a motorcycle enthusiast. He is with a group of on- and off-road riders that take weekend trips and join international motorcycle tours. Tom Sollas and his wife, Melanie, have three girls (ages 5, 3 and 2) and welcomed their fourth child, a son, Colin Thomas, in January. Tom and family reside in Point Pleasant, NJ. Kevin Kenerson ran his 6th Boston Marathon in April in support of the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. 

86  I Dave Cantin, his wife, Kim, and children, Jack and Lauren, are moving from Cincinnati, OH, to Santa Barbara, CA. Dave was promoted to the newly created position of group product director, Body Aesthetics at Mentor Corporation (a recent Johnson & Johnson- acquired company). Dave has been working with J & J for the last 15 years and his wife, Kim, has been there for a couple years longer. Dave says he will miss hanging out with Bob Castellini at the Cincinnati Reds ball games and golf courses. He looks forward to hosting any classmates that find their way to Santa Barbara in the future. Kent Rudasill has settled back into life at Portsmouth Abbey as a math teacher, assistant houseparent in St. Leonard’s, and junior varsity baseball coach. Kent is continuing to pursue his Ph.D. in mathematics at the University of Rhode Island.

Bill Burns ‘82 designed the Stiletto for the U. S. Navy.


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Eamonn O’Brien ‘95, his wife, Tara, and their two children

Miguel Bichara ‘94 and his son, Daniel, class of 2026

87  I Peter D. Fitzpatrick is following in his grandfather’s footsteps as president of the Bar Association of Frederick County, MD. He assumed the year-long post in January 2010. He served as secretary, treasurer and president-elect in years past, and feels very prepared for the job.

88  I Paul Moore and his wife, Courtney, of Houston, TX, are pleased to announce the birth of Vaughn Preston, born November 9, 2009. He joins sisters Keeley and Wellsley and brother Bowen. Chris Abbate has been appointed the head of U.S. leveraged finance at UBS. Chris, a managing director with the leveraged finance group, joined UBS in 1997 as an associate. Additionally, Chris’ mother, Jennifer, received the 2010 Distinguished Teacher Award for the New England Region from the Elementary Department of the National Catholic Educational Association. She is a third-grade teacher at St. Philomena School in Portsmouth, Rhode Island. Kathleen and Keith Cardoza co-hosted the School’s Chicago Reception in June at The Chicago Club.

89  I In 2008, “after getting tired of hearing about the demise of the publishing world,” Michael FitzGerald co-founded Submishmash, a cloud-based submission management application that saves publishers and non-profit arts organizations time and money. “Since our launch last February, thousands of publishers and arts organiza-

tions have used the software to create new revenue streams and save their artists and writers time and money,” reports Michael. “I live in Missoula, MT, with my wife and two sons, Ignatius and Eamon.” Marc Leandro reports that he married Lin Sorensen on May 22, 2010, in South Dartmouth, MA. It was an incredible weekend, with relatives and friends from across the country in attendance. Marc and Lin plan to continue to make their home in Brooklyn, NY, with trips to the West Coast as frequently as possible.

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Matt D’Arrigo is enjoying a summer 2010 sabbatical away from ARTS (, the San Diego-based nonprofit he founded in 2001. The sabbatical is providing Matt with a period of creative renewal and time for a new management structure at the organization to take hold. Matt will return to a redefined role of leading ARTS into its second decade.

91  I Gordon Carrolton of the Coalition for Responsible Siting of LNG testified in front of a Senate task force in mid-March against liquefied natural gas. The Coalition for Responsible Siting of LNG is a broad-based organization fighting against the siting of LNG facilities in heavily populated areas. Gordon also toured Unites States Senator Scott Brown (R-MA) by boat as he reviewed the proposed LNG terminal area.

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Ron Passaro continues to keep busy scoring music for film and TV as well as working on a new musical with lyricist David Lee. His music can be heard this

92  I Joe Toth is a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy, serving as a defense attorney in Pearl Harbor, HI. If anyone is in Hawaii contact Joe at LCDR Charles “Chuck” Burton is a naval aviator currently serving with the U.S. Navy in Norfolk, VA, and is engaged to Heather Mae Wilson of Passo Robles, CA.

94  I Adam Conway recently returned from a wonderful trip to India. He was there for


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ten days visiting multiple cities and various businesses and educational institutions as part of a U.S. – India Executive Exchange Program. Adam was speaking on the retirement planning industry in the US and learning about India’s business environment. His firm is part of NRP National Retirement Partners, ranked as one of the Top 401(K) and 403(B) Consulting Firms in the U.S. Please feel free to reach out to Adam at It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia star Charlie Day will be on the big screen in August as he appears in Going the Distance with Drew Barrymore and Justin Long.

Adam Conway ‘94


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Ron Passaro ‘95

year at numerous film festivals, including the Seattle International Film Festival and the Atlanta Film Festival. In the interest of staying in touch and getting to know other alumni, please feel free to say hello to Ron by sending an email to ronpassaro@ Cheers! James Zilian lives in Woodstock, VT, with his wife, Zoe, and 2 little girls, Mia and Ava. James is the senior designer for Simon Pearce Glass and Pottery. The July 2010 cover of Bon Appetit magazine features the Cavendish dinner plate designed by James.

96  I Sean Rooney and his wife, Lisette, had their daughter, Sophia, christened in a small ceremony performed by Father Damian at the Portsmouth Abbey Church on April 1, 2010. They also recently purchased a home in Middletown, RI. Corey Jamison is living back in Freeport, ME, trying to support his mom after the death of his father. He is working for Spurwink Services as an assistant program director, providing clinical supervision to 4 adolescent group homes and carrying a small caseload for individual therapy. He sees his brother, Ryan ’98, quite a bit in his new home in Kingston, NH. Sarah (Hatch) Straz writes, “I am a high school English teacher in York, ME. I was

married to Tim Straz in August of 2004, and we live on the Maine coast. I hope all is well at the Abbey! I try to visit whenever I am in Rhode Island, which is rare. Such fond memories, though!” Martin Eisner is an assistant professor of romance studies at Duke University. Professor Eisner has a B.A. in Italian (1999) and a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature (2005) from Columbia University. He specializes in medieval Italian literature, particularly the works of Dante, Petrarch, and Boccaccio, as well as the history of the book and media.

Triona Mahon’s ‘97 bridesmaids included Tamara Sreenivasan Lal ‘98 (far left), Celine Thyssen-Miller ‘97 (middle) and Mary Burke ‘97 (far right). Celine’s daughter, Emma Miller, was the flower girl.

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state to a job in science or math education as I work on a master’s degree; otherwise, please drop by to count cowboy hats with me!” Ryan Jamison made local news in early March after achieving a daring rescue of his dog, an 80-lb. German Shepherd named Hennessey. She wandered out on to a partially frozen pond and fell through the ice about 150 feet offshore. Ryan jumped in the icy water to reach Hennessey. He reached the sheet of ice and crawled 30 feet to his dog only to realize he would need more help. His girlfriend, Kelly, threw a broken canoe towards Ryan and he was able to use it to get his dog out of the water; unfortunately, the canoe started taking on water and could not be paddled through the snow and ice. Within moments, firefighters arrived with a rescue sled. Ryan and Hennessey are both recovered from their icy adventure. Jorge Andres Cedron recently became the legal counsel for the Latin America division of Stryker Corpora-

Ryan Grabert and Lou Tavares both recently had baby girls, and got together to catch up. Kyla Reagan Tavares was born 12/1/09 to Lou and his wife, Erika Darling. Maeve Ann Grabert was born 1/10/10 to Ryan and his wife, Meghan Grabert.

98  I Nat Spencer graduated from Roger Williams University Law School and is taking the NY Bar at the end of July. He is actively looking for a job focused on maritime law. While at Roger Williams Nat served as the president and secretary of the Maritime Law Society as well as a member of the Admiralty Moot Court Team. He also served as a legal intern at DeOrchis & Partners in New York City and at Save the Bay in Providence. Nat earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Vermont. He looks forward to the end of July when his bar classes end and he can unwind for a few weeks. Jennifer Stankiewicz moved to Fort Worth, TX, in September “and after living in Texas for almost a year would like to suggest we sell Texas back to Mexico, except for Austin and Padre Island,” she jokes. “I have been tutoring teen parents and inner-city teens to pass the TAKS science and math exams and graduate from high school, which has been rewarding and frustrating. I am also working at the Museum of Science and History as an educator. Hopefully in the fall I will be moving to a coastal blue

Jennifer Stankiewicz ‘98 moved to Texas in September

The July 2010 cover of Bon Appetit featured a dinner plate designed by James Zilian ‘95 PAGE 68

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Amara (Murray) Mulder ‘99, her husband, Matt, and their baby boy, Micah

tion. Nicole (Eldredge) Mogard is working in Washington, D.C., as an attorney for the U.S. Office of Special Counsel.  Nicole married Lance Mogard on May 7, 2010, in Newport. Nellie Rainwater received a master’s degree in dance from the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU this spring. Following his June wedding to Kyley Lyon, Jason Weida will be moving to Concord, NH,to clerk for Judge Jeffrey Howard of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. Dan Tortorice is an assistant professor of economics, with a secondary appointment in the International Business School (IBS) at Brandeis University. Dan is a macroeconomist studying the causes of economic fluctuations and the formation of macroeconomic expectations. He uses data on expectations to test leading models of expectations, learning-based models of expectations to study consumption volatility, and structural models to examine outflow from and inflow into unemployment. He teaches undergraduate Macroeconomic Theory, Financial Theory and courses in the Ph.D. macroeconomics sequence. Dan holds undergraduate degrees in economics and mathematics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. from Harvard University.

99  I Amara (Murray) Mulder and her husband, Matt, will celebrate the first birthday of their baby boy, Micah, this summer! Amara just graduated from medical

school (Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology program) and will begin her internship in Internal Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) in Boston. “Matt will be stopping his long-time job as an academics coach for the afterschool program, Squashbusters, in order to watch Micah full time for now,” reports Amara. “If you’re in Boston, please drop by!” Kristen (Weida) Smith received her Ph.D. in environmental health from Boston University School of Public Health this spring. Kristen will be a post-doctoral research fellow at Harvard School of Public Health working with Dr. Russ Hauser.

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Alexandra Hart is looking forward to seeing old classmates during reunion weekend. “Class of 2000, save the date and be sure to come back to Portsmouth for our 10-year reunion! Please spread the word and log on to the new-and-improved PAS Alumni online community to update your contact info so everyone gets information regarding our reunion weekend.”

01  I Abigail (Pfeffer) Block joined her husband’s company, Erik Block Design-Build, at the beginning of the year. “We’re a small design-build firm in Connecticut that specializes in sustainable design, restoration and timber framing,” says Abby. “Check us out at The company has joined the movement “1% for the Planet” as just the 18th builder in the entire world! 1% was started by Patagonia’s founder, Yvonne Chouinard, and as a member, we donate 1% of our total annual sales to local non-profit environmental groups. On top of that, we just welcomed nine ducks and four geese into the family along with three hives of bees! We’re working on our organic veggie garden in the hope that eventually we will be able to feed ourselves from food produced by us on our own land! It’s a lot of work, but also a lot of fun.” Ethan Murray sends word that he has moved to his wife’s home country of Costa Rica, “as we have planned for a long time. It’s


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Silvana Delfino Cisneros ‘99 with her son,Alejandro

going well so far; still working for my Boston employer, thanks to modern technology. Our baby, Owen, is about to turn one year old and is wonderful.” Karina Craig married John Hubert Wellington Pinder II on April 24, 2010, in Hope Town, Abaco, Bahamas. Portsmouth alumni in attendance were Cristina Craig Wurster ’98, Brooke Gilligan ‘01, Tiffany Spencer ‘01, Kate Erstling ‘01, and Franklin Craig ’76. Chris Hornig is living in Austin, TX, with his wife, Veronica, and attending the University of Texas Law School.

02  I Mike Erwin is currently serving in the United States Navy as the reactor officer onboard the U.S.S. Dallas, a nuclear submarine, home ported in Groton, CT. He was married in June to Angelica Duran.

04  I Eva Gordon graduated from Eugene Lang College at The New School University in 2008 with a B.A. in writing, and is currently at work on an M.F.A. in fiction writing from Spalding University. She has a book coming out at Christmas, 2010, called, The Everything Guide to Writing Children’s Books, 2nd Edition, which is co-authored with her dad, Luke Wallin, and published by Adams Media. A poem written by Eva was published in the Spring 2010 issue of Prism Review, published out of La Verne University in California. In September, she will be moving to Extremadura, Spain, for a year or two to teach English to high school students, having received a continuing education grant from the Spanish Ministry of Education. Noah Swistak of Jamestown, RI, received a master’s degree in


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city planning during commencement ceremonies held May 17 at the University of Pennsylvania. Noah is a 2008 graduate of Villanova University. After graduating from Swarthmore College in May of 2009, Susan Willis spent the summer visiting with friends and family, and traveling to Indiana with Steve Miller and Claire Amirault to attend the wedding of Andy Valenzuela. In the fall she moved to Berkeley, CA, to begin graduate studies in environmental engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was awarded the Einstein, Horn, and Tucker Fellowship. Susan reports that she is “having great fun exploring the food and wine scene in Northern California. In May, I completed an M.S. degree in environmental engineering and this summer I am beginning Ph.D. research on an NSF graduate research fellowship. My research is in the field of environmental fluid mechanics, particularly how internal waves contribute to mixing in Monterey Bay.”Matthew A. Corser received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Rhode Island. Elise Markell lives in Los Angeles and works in the music industry. She is spending the summer on the Honda Civic tour, featuring Paramore, Tegan and Sara, and New Found Glory. Katie Guida received a master of arts degree from Pennsylvania State University. As a Graham Fellow, she studied art history with a concentration in Italian Renaissance art. She is currently enrolled in the Ph.D. program at Penn State and plans to teach at the university. Samantha Mercer graduated from Simmons College with a masters in education. She will be working in the Newton, MA, school systems at Mason Rice School as a behavioral therapist. Following graduation from George Washington University in 2008, Lawrence Slocum was commissioned an officer in the United States Marine Corps. Lawrence is a logistics officer currently stationed at Camp Pendleton, California.

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Kacie Harrington is currently working for Cornell University in the department of nutritional sciences as their food labs manager. Lauren Turnbull received her B.F.A. in Film from Pratt Institute’s School of Art


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and Design in May 2010. She resides in metropolitan New York.

06  I Courtney Mitchell graduated magna cum laude from Barnard College, Columbia University, with a B.A. in English. While at Barnard, Courtney was on the Dean’s List each semester and was president of Barnard’s Pre-Law Society. She also spent a semester studying in Aix-en-Provence, France, and completed internships at Congressman Barney Frank’s Washington D.C., office, the Correctional Association of New York and the Legal Aid Society of New York. She will be working as a legal assistant at the New York City office of Davis Polk & Wardwell. Ben T. Quatromoni received his bachelor’s degree from University of Rhode Island and achieved Dean’s List recognition. Alysa Crellin of Little Compton, RI, received a bachelor’s degree in economics from Dickinson College. Additionally, Alysa, a member of the Dickinson women’s lacrosse team, was named second-team All-Metro Region. Alysa led the Centennial Conference (CC) with 67 (4.67 per game) draw controls on the year. She was third on the team in scoring with 23 goals and nine assists. Alysa holds the school record in career draw controls with 226. She earned All-CC honors all four years of her career. She was a first-team selection in 2008 and 2010 and earned Honorable Mention in 2007 and 2010. Crellin was also selected to play in the IWLCA North-South Senior All-Star Game. Margaret Mahan studied abroad in Bodh Gaya, India, through a program run by Saint Michael’s College. She was a student at the Buddhist Studies program. She received a bachelor’s degree in English. Gabriella Aballi graduated from the University of Miami in December 2009 with a major in public relations and is currently working for the Jeffrey Group, a PR firm in Miami. Eli Leino graduated from Hamilton in May and is going to work on the Congressional Campaign of the honorable Charles F. Bass (NH-R). Rachel Johnstone and Natalie Sharp were named to the Dean’s List with Honors at Connecticut College. Alison Morgera

was named to the spring semester Dean’s List with High Honors at University of New Hampshire. Sophie O’Reilly, a Liberal Studies major, was named to the Dean’s List at St. Anselm College. Tom Pickin, an English major, was named to the Dean’s List at St. Anselm College. Abigail DiPalma received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Hobart and William Smith Colleges. She graduated magna cum laude. Perry Markell graduated from Mount Holyoke College in May, an international relations major with a focus on politics. A midfielder on the lacrosse team, Perry was named to the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III New England All-Star Second Team after helping Mount Holyoke College to its most wins in over 15 years. During the 2010 season she piled up 61 points in 18 games played, and established a new program single-season record with 159 draw controls; she was among the national leaders in the category. The midfielder also earned New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) All-Conference First Team honors. On April 7, 2010, Conor Collins was a contestant on the T.V. show “Jeopardy.” While he did not win the big prize he did answer some tough questions about Rupert Murdoch, Beastly Expressions and Mythology, and had some great banter with Alex Trebek about “buying a vowel” while attempting to answer a Daily Double question about words that can be formed out of the word “tomatoes.”Zach Guida graduated cum laude from Bridgewater College of Virginia. He was president of the senior

Perry Markell ‘07 playing lacrosse for Mount Holyoke College


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Georgia Markell ‘07 working on the playground tree house in Samana, Dominican Republic

Mary McDonough ‘07

class and majored in business administration, with a concentration in marketing. Audrey Nebergall completed her career as a member of the Hamilton College women’s lacrosse team by competing for the 2010 NCAA Division III national championship. While playing for Hamilton Audrey totaled 76 goals and earned 3 varsity letters. Following his graduation from MIT with a dual degree in physics and mathematics with a minor in philosophy, Andrew Brainerd will begin a Ph.D. program at Columbia University. Zach McCune is working on a documentary project, Heritage at Play, about the role of Gaelic games in Irish Society. It is a joint production between Zachary and colleague Colleen Brogan. The project is sponsored by an AT&T New Media Fellowship and supported by the Watson Institute for International Studies. For just under a month, from mid-June to mid-July 2010, Zack and Colleen traveled around Ireland meeting with Gaelic Athletic Association players, fans, journalists, managers, historians, and supporters to observe firsthand how Gaelic games work in Ireland. Tom Harty graduated from Hobart College with a B.A. degree in history. While at Hobart Tom was a four-year member of the men’s cross-country team and captain during his senior season. Tom was honored with the Dr. Augustus H. “Gus” Hillman ’26 Memorial Award for outstanding sportsmanship, leadership, and determination. Following graduation from the United States Naval Academy, Ensign Charlie Holmstrom has selected Naval Special Warfare – Navy SEALs as his service selection.

French. Max has been working as an analyst for Arctaris Capital Partners for the past six months and is a founding partner of Clover Advisors, a capital acquisition consultancy based in Boston. Mary McDonough writes, “I am doing very well, having just finished my third year of studying theology at St. Anselm College...still loving every minute of it. The highlight of my junior year was the trip I took to Europe with my choir: we spent a week in Belgium, Luxembourg, and Paris, France. It was definitely the experience of a lifetime. This summer, I am planning to work as a camp counselor at Carnegie Abbey again, for the third summer in a row, so that should keep me busy until the end of the summer. I hope everyone else is doing well. I’d love to hear from you if you get the chance. Mary was named to the Dean’s List this spring at St. Anselm College. Sohyun “Claire” Chung graduated from Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA, in April. She successfully completed college in three years and earned a magna cum laude degree in fine arts and multimedia design. On May 8th, the Portsmouth Abbey School community gathered on the Varsity Baseball Field in memory of Matthew J. Penney for a tree dedication ceremony. Brendan Kinnane finished his junior year at Union College and was named to the ECAC Division Three Upstate All-Stars second team. On the All-Liberty League First Team, Kinnane has won the Liberty League Offensive Player of the Week three times. He led the Union offense with 40 points, including a teamhigh 20 assists, to go with his 20 goals. Steve Kyriakides was named to the Dean’s List at Salve Regina University. Georgia Markell is an architecture major at Mount Holyoke College. She spent January term in the Dominican Republic with a design/build

07  I Max Klietmann is entering his final year at Bentley University, planning to graduate with a B.A. in managerial economics, a B.S. in international business and a minor in

Joanna Lanz ‘07


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program called Yestermorrow. Georgia and the team worked with the mayor’s office of Samana to design and construct a playground for the local children. Joanna Lanz reports in from Denver, “Hi Everyone! Things are going well here for me …! I am graduating one year early (yay! and congrats 2010 college grads!), which is exciting. I have also been swimming competitively at the University of Colorado, which I have adored. Take care all, I really miss everyone at the Abbey! ” In the fall, Joanna will be moving to Boston to start a job as a full-time nanny for a wonderful family. She is excited to be heading back to the east coast and hopes to see many old faces again soon. This summer, Joanna will be working on Second Beach in Middletown again. Lucy Wallace, a junior crew on the Boston College sailing team, celebrated the Eagles’ national championship on June 3, in Madison, Wisconsin. Lucy and Briana Provancha of San Diego crewed for BC skipper Tyler Sinks, as the Eagles claimed victory on the final day of the ICSA/GILL National Championship. Seung Hyun Yang writes, “Well, I’ve been serving in the South Korean Army since last February. It’s been very tough both physically and mentally, but I’m getting used to it. My service will expire in November 2011. I’ll eventually go back to school at the University of Chicago and graduate with degrees in math and econ in early 2013. Juan Maegli, who attends the College of Charleston, has been named a 2010 Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association (ICSA) All-American. Juan is one of only two underclassman recognized as All-Americans.


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08  I Graham Skinner and his Hobart College sailing team won the 2010 ECAC Championship. Stephanie Perez played lacrosse at Tufts University this past spring. After a great season with the Jumbos, Steph, a sophomore, was selected for All-NESCAC first team, Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) All-Pilgrim Region Team, and received third team All-American honors. The Tufts Department of Athletics reports, “Perez did a little bit of everything on the field for Coach Carol Rappoli’s Jumbos this spring. In addition to leading the team in ground balls (40) and draw controls (50), she scored 18 goals with six assists for 24 points in 15 starts and had 16 caused turnovers. She had a pair of goals, including the game-winner, in Tufts’ 17-7 victory against eventual conference champion Williams.” Emily Pederson was named to the Dean’s High Honor List at New York University, Gallatin School of Individualized Study. Pierce King was an attack on the Bowdoin College men’s lacrosse team. Brianne Rok was named to the fall semester Dean’s List at Villanova

University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Michael Behan was named to the Northeastern University Dean’s List. Mike will be spending a good part of the summer in Kenya with his brother, Garrett ’11, and cousin, Brigid ’11. Mike climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, volunteering at Flying Kites orphanage and then traveling to South Africa along the southeast coast. Teddy Taylor is playing squash on Boston College’s club team. They moved up 21 places in the collegiate squash rankings this season. Bryan Abraham was a forward on the Catholic University hockey team and was named to the Blue Ridge Hockey Conference second team. Bryan has 15 goals and 20 assists, is the second-leading scorer on the team. Frank Holbrooke was a member of the Wheaton College baseball team, where he appeared in 7 games as a pitcher for the Lyons. Caroline Mason, a Kenan Music Scholar at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, was named to the Dean’s List for the fall 2009 semester. Dan Bernard was named to the spring semester Dean’s List at the University of Vermont. Carl Lichtenfels is a co-captain of the Providence College sailing team.

09  I Kayla Bowers was named to the Dean’s List for the spring semester at Drew University. Kerry Klemmer was a member of the Wesleyan University women’s squash team. Brendan Buckley was a defenseman on the West Point men’s lacrosse team that stunned national power Syracuse University in the opening round of the Men’s Division I Lacrosse Championship. According to Army Head Coach, Joe Alberici, Brendan “...opened a lot of eyes with his play during the fall season ... very physical defender ... plays hard ... continues to improve his communication skills.” Dan Flanigan was a member of the Bucknell University men’s crew team.

Come Take Root at our open house 2010



Saturday October 23 or Saturday, December 4 8:00 am - noon Call to reserve your space by October 14 or November 24 / 401.643.1248 PAGE 72

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Thank You!

The aim of Portsmouth Abbey School is to help young men and women grow in knowledge and grace. Grounded in the Catholic faith and 1500-year-old Benedictine intellectual tradition, the School fosters:

Portsmouth Abbey thanks the hundreds of alumni, parents, and friends whose philanthropic participation helped the School reach another Annual Fund benchmark. Your generosity is vital to every moment in the classroom, every lesson learned on the athletic field and stage, and every friendship built in our student houses. Each year, your generous participation ensures the continuation of Portsmouth Abbey's unique campus atmosphere and reaffirms your singular role in the Portsmouth Abbey community. On behalf of every student, teacher and monk, thank you. Special thanks to the class agents, the reunion fundraisers, the parent volunteers, and the Alumni Leadership Committee, whose dedication made this year such a tremendous success.

Reverence for God and the human person Respect for learning and order Responsibility for the shared experience of community life


Right Rev. Dom Caedmon Holmes, O.S.B. Abbot and Chancellor Portsmouth, RI Mr. John M. Regan, III ’68, P ’07 Chairman Watch Hill, RI Mr. Thomas Anderson ’73 Gwynedd Valley, PA Sr. M. Therese Antone, RSM, Ed. D. Newport, RI Dom Joseph Byron, O.S.B. Portsmouth, RI Mr. Frederick C. Childs ’75, P ’08 Cambridge, MA Mr. Creighton O. Condon ’74, P ’07, ’10 London, England Dom Francis Crowley, O.S.B. Portsmouth, RI Mr. Stephen M. Cunningham ’72 Greenwich, CT Mr. James D. Farley, Jr. ’81 Dearborn, MI Dr. Timothy Flanigan ’75, P ’06, ’09, ’11 Tiverton, RI Mr. James S. Gladney P ’10, ’11 Barrington, RI Dom Gregory Havill, O.S.B. Portsmouth, RI Dr. Margaret S. Healey P ’91 New Vernon, NJ Dr. Gregory Hornig ’68, P ’01 Prairie Village, KS

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Mr. M. Benjamin Howe ’79 Wellesley, MA Rev. F. Washington Jarvis Dorchester Center, MA Rev. Dom Damian Kearney, O.S.B. ‘45 Portsmouth, RI Mr. Charles E. Kenahan ’77, P ’12 Swampscott, MA Mr. Edward G. Kirby ’83 Jamestown, RI Mr. Alejandro J. Knoepffler ’78, P ’12 Coral Gables, FL Ms. Devin McShane P’09, ’11 Providence, RI Mr. James S. Mulholland, III ’79 Sudbury, MA Mr. Robert A. Savoie P ’10, ’11 Bristol, RI Right Rev. Dom Mark Serna, O.S.B. Portsmouth, RI Ms. Kathleen Boland Stevens ’95 Brookline, MA Rev. Dom Luke L. Travers, O.S.B. ’75 Morristown, NJ Mr. Samuel G. White ’64 New York, NY Very Rev. Dom Ambrose Wolverton, O.S.B. Prior Portsmouth, RI

Join Us October 1-3, 2010 Classes ending in ‘0 or ‘5 and all Diman Club Classes (graduation before 1960) are invited to return to campus for Reunion Weekend.

We’ve planned a weekend full of great events for the entire family! Check out some of the highlights below. Class Dinners New England Clambake Reunion Celebration Dinner with live music Children’s Activities Fair v Athletic Events Alumni Book Display and Art Exhibit Back to the Classroom with Favorite Faculty Members and Students 50th Reunion Mass for the Class of 1960 An Insider’s Tour of Portsmouth Abbey Lourdes Pilgrimage Recollection and Brunch with Chapel Talk & Rosary Alumni Sailing Team Regatta Reunion Golf Outings are available on Friday, October 1st. Touch base with your classmates and call or email Fran Cook to book a tee time! Log on to the Alumni Community to get information on your Class Dinner location and to check out “Look Who’s Coming” for a list of those members of your class who have registered to come to Reunion 2010! Questions? Call Fran Cook at 401-643-1281 or email

Cover: Dominic Palumbo ‘74 of Moon in the Pond Farm Photograph by Jason Houston/

We look forward to welcoming you back to campus in October!

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285 Cory’s Lane Portsmouth, Rhode Island 02871 Address Service Requested


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Portsmouth Abbey School 2010 Summer Bulletin  

Portsmouth Abbey School 2010 Summer Bulletin - Feeding Body and Soul