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Fall 2013

On November 14, more than eighty members of the alumni community and nonprofit sector gathered at the Princeton Club of New York for a night of networking and conversation focused on encore careers and transitional opportunities in the social sector. Princeton AlumniCorps partnered with the Class of ’71 Legacy Initiative,, and the Princeton Club of New York to bring alumni, Community Volunteers participants, current and former fellows, and a diverse group of local nonprofits together to launch the Community Volunteers program in New York. The event marked the growing reach of the program. Beginning this winter, Community Volunteers will pair nonprofits in New York with experienced alumni looking for pro bono opportunities. Our goal is to offer nonprofits costfree access to professional expertise. In turn, our nonprofit partners offer alumni skills-based volunteer opportunities to serve the community in which they live or work in a truly

Volume 16, Issue 3

meaningful way. The event featured Marci Alboher, author of The Encore Career Handbook and Vice President of, whose mission to “promote second acts for the greater good” aligns with the goals of Community Volunteers. Anne Tergesen ’86, a Wall Street Journal reporter who writes about retirement, interviewed Marci about the encore career movement and then moderated a panel of alumni who have pursued work in the social sector. Panelists included Karen Ali ’78, a former lawyer who recently completed a Community Volunteers project in New Jersey, and Sharon Keld ’80, Development Officer at Continued on Page 3

At its September meeting, the AlumniCorps Board adopted four new strategic goals recommended by the Strategic Plan Steering Committee. These goals emerged from a six-month planning process, during which the Steering Committee gathered ideas and feedback from across the AlumniCorps community. As we pursue these goals together, the AlumniCorps community can look forward to a year of programming in 2014-15 celebrating the first 25 years of AlumniCorps and looking ahead to the next. We are launching a major outreach initiative to engage PP55 fellowship alumni in more meaningful ways, including convening groups of alumni who share a passion for a particular public issue, such as education, criminal justice reform, or public health. You can also expect our core programs, which form a continuum of alumni engagement, to get even better. Finally, the AlumniCorps Board is committed to the sustainability of this organization that we all care for deeply. From Board leadership succession planning to ensuring continued strong financial management to dramati-

AlumniCorps 2013-2016 Strategic Goals:  Affirm 25 Years of Addressing Social Issues  Strengthen the Field by Building Our Networks  Enhance Core Programs  Sustain Organizational Health cally increasing giving from PP55 alumni, the Board will pursue a series of objectives designed to sustain AlumniCorps for years to come. The AlumniCorps Board and staff thank the Steering Committee for developing clear, substantive, exciting, and achievable goals that will significantly broaden our impact. The committee was co-chaired by John Fish ’55 and Kathy Miller ’77 and included Jessica Johnson ’98, Kef Kasdin ’85, Stan Katz h’21, Anne-Marie Maman ’84, Tony Quainton ’55, Kenly Webster ’55, and Executive Director Andrew Nurkin. We invite the whole AlumniCorps community to join the ongoing work of implementing the plan. For a copy of the Strategic Planning Report, please email

Clara Botstein ’07 is the Director of Early College Strategy for Bard College. She is a former PP55 fellow and a current Emerging Leader. We asked her to reflect on the experience of her fellowship, her career, and how AlumniCorps continues to impact her work. Princeton AlumniCorps has had the largest impact of any single organization on my career development and trajectory. I participated in the Princeton Project 55 Fellowship program in Chicago from 2007-08 and in New York City from 2008-09. My placement in Chicago was at the Civic Federation, a nonpartisan government research organization. Through the Civic Federation and the fellowship’s weekly seminar series, I became interested in local government, policy, and community development. Through the seminars in particular, the fellowship opened my eyes to the diversity of nonprofit organizations that exist, as well as the very real challenges they face, and encouraged me to apply for a more community development-oriented policy job. My interests led me to United Neighborhood Houses of New York (UNH), the umbrella organization of New York City’s settlement houses and community centers, which I found through the Princeton AlumniCorps fellowship network. During my two years on UNH’s policy team, I was able to learn about and advocate for a range of human services, including after school and college access programs. It was at UNH that I discovered my passion for education reform and decided to pursue a graduate degree in public policy with a focus on education. Since graduating from policy school at the University of California, Berkeley, I have been working on new school development and advocacy for Bard College’s early college team. Bard’s early colleges allow public school students to earn tuition-free college credits up to

an associate’s degree concurrently with a high school diploma, thereby creating a seamless and affordable pathway for students to and through college. At Bard, I found myself in an exciting and challenging role, and I was eager to find a support network and a way in which to continue developing my skills so I could be as successful as possible. My desire for professional development and a support network led me to apply to the AlumniCorps Emerging Leaders program, which I learned about through a friend. Emerging Leaders has been a terrific experience. I have been able to hear from inspiring nonprofit speakers and to delve deeper into specific topics, such as fundraising, that are relevant for my job. The program also focuses heavily on management and team building, which has been very helpful for me as a member of a new and growing staff. Most importantly, Emerging Leaders allows me to take time out of my schedule to reflect on my work and to learn from talented peers (the other Emerging Leaders participants) who face similar challenges. Princeton AlumniCorps has had a profound impact on my career and aspirations. As a Princeton graduate interested in public service, Princeton AlumniCorps provided a much-needed outlet through which to find opportunities in the nonprofit sector. Beyond help with job placement, Princeton AlumniCorps has allowed me to discover and explore potential career paths, develop my skills, and meet mentors and likeminded individuals who will become the next generation of public sector leaders. Having those experiences and that network has been invaluable. I am fully committed to a public service career, and I thank Princeton AlumniCorps for helping to make that possible, for me and hundreds of other graduates.

“Princeton AlumniCorps has allowed me to discover and explore potential career paths, develop my skills, and meet mentors and likeminded individuals who will become the next generation of public sector leaders.”


AlumniCorps will begin recruiting the next class of Emerging Leaders in New York and Washington, DC, in early 2014. Stay tuned for application information! For more information about Emerging Leaders, please contact Rachel Benevento at

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AlumniCorps and former Peace Corps volunteer and marketing professional. Marci Alboher began by sharing her knowledge of encore and transitional careers. She explained that there are generally two types of people in the movement “leapers” and “planners.” Some people are meticulous about planning their encore career— attending classes, researching, conducting interviews— and others leap in where help is needed. She stressed that the nonprofit sector is the third largest sector in the United States and that opportunities to get involved and develop skills are abundant. Panelist Sharon Keld ’80 talked about her experience transitioning from the business world to nonprofits. Noting that her work in marketing felt unfulfilling, she described her journey toward the nonprofit sector, which included earning a certificate in nonprofit management studies and multiple assignments with Peace Corps and Peace Corps Response. After returning from the Peace Corps, where she put her marketing background to work doing business development with Moroccan artisans, Sharon volunteered in a variety of roles until joining the AlumniCorps staff. At the conclusion of the program, Judy Safian k’55 spoke about her father’s passion for AlumniCorps and Community Volunteers. Chet Safian ’55, was instrumental in starting the Project 55 Fellowship Program in New York and was its biggest champion for more than 20 years. Shortly before he passed away in April 2013 he began laying the groundwork for Community Volunteers to expand to New York. Judy noted that the Community Volunteers model was her father’s experience with AlumniCorps and she encouraged attendees to “get involved with Community Volunteers. It’s a great experience. It will expand your network and open your world in ways you never imagined. It changed my father’s life and it can change yours.” Following a question and answer period, representatives from offered additional advice to those looking for nonprofit opportunities. AlumniCorps partner organizations were also on hand to talk about the projects available through Community Volunteers. In the coming months, AlumniCorps will be working to match interested participants to partner organizations for short-term, high-impact projects in New York. The event was organized by Program Leader Kef Kasdin ’85, New York lead volunteers Regina Lee ’85 and Scott Taylor ’75, and Program Director Rachel Benevento. The expansion of Community Volunteers is made possible by the Chet Safian Innovation Fund.

From left: Marci Alboher, Anne Tergesen ’86, Karen Ali ’78, and Sharon Keld ’80 during the panel discussion.

Guests make new connections during the networking reception.

The AlumniCorps Twitter feed was hacked! Okay, not really, but over the summer Emerging Leader Mariah Craven took over the AlumniCorps Twitter account to share some program insights. Check out a few of her tweets: @AlumniCorps Effective #leadership is situational, dependent on engaged followers, & adaptive over time. @AlumniCorps One of the most useful aspects of the Emerging Leaders program is that it has contextualized theories and practices; made them relevant. @AlumniCorps Our guest speakers are here! Today we’re hearing from Groundswell’s Elizabeth Lindsey and Pyper Davis from SEED Foundation. @AlumniCorps Today Emerging Leaders in DC are being hosted by @casefoundation. We’re talking about why #leadership is fluid. Follow us on Twitter @AlumniCorps or like the Princeton AlumniCorps Facebook page!


Calling PP55 Alumni and Fellows: Join our $15,000 Challenge! When the newest class of PP55 fellows began work this summer, the number of alumni connected with public interest work through the Princeton Project 55 Fellowship Program grew to 1,507. To mark this exciting milestone, PP55 alumna Melissa Frey Mazin ’91 and Craig Mazin ’92 have teamed up with Board member and PP55 mentor Scott Taylor ’75 to sponsor a $15,000 matching gift challenge. Since the challenge was launched on October 16, we have reached more than 1/3 of our goal:

$6,343 raised

$8,657 left to reach our goal $15,000


Every dollar that an alum or current PP55 fellow donates between now and December 31 will be matched. We are calling on all PP55 alumni to step up and join the challenge! If we meet the $15,000 goal, this will mean an extra $30,000 for AlumniCorps programming. We thank those PP55 alums who have already made a gift this year. The PP55 Challenge is part of AlumniCorps’ overall goal to raise $235,000 from individual donors by June 30, 2014. We invite all members of our community to make a gift today to help us reach this goal. To donate, please visit or send your gift to Princeton AlumniCorps, 12 Stockton Street, Princeton, NJ 08540.

Regular seminars are a core element of the Project 55 Fellowships Program, giving fellows opportunities to deepen their knowledge about public issues and civic leadership. In Chicago, PP55 fellows gather weekly with fellows from our TAN affiliate schools to be inspired by and learn from leaders working for social change. Latalia White ’12 reports on a recent PP55 seminar in Chicago.


On Wednesday, November 13, Chicago PP55 fellows met downtown at Civic Consulting Alliance with Public Interest Program fellows from Northwestern University and the University of Chicago for a seminar led by Pamela Bozeman-Evans, Chief Operating Officer of the YWCA in Chicago. Bozeman-Evans described how growing up in a grassroots politically active family on the South Side of Chicago set the foundation for her to dedicate her life to public service, with a focus on helping women and children. After graduating from Northern Illinois University with a Bachelor’s degree in corporate communication and a Master’s degree in fiscal administration, Bozeman-Evans took a position as the Director of the University of Chicago’s Community Service Center after childhood friend [and former PP55 mentor] Michelle Obama ’85 persuaded her to consider the position. She has also worked on

Barack Obama’s Senate campaign and served as the Senior Program Director for the Gary Comer Youth Center. Bozeman-Evans used her time as Executive Director for Blue Gargoyle Community Services from 2007-2009 to detail the struggles of running a nonprofit organization during tough financial times, reflecting to fellows how the shutting down of Blue Gargoyle under her leadership inspired her to prove her critics wrong by successfully moving ahead in her career. Bozeman-Evans’s advice to fellows who want to work in the nonprofit sector is that their focus should be on working toward a future in which their nonprofit organization no longer exists. Using her current position as COO of the YWCA Chicago as an example, she expressed that she would be horrified if there was still a need in one hundred and fifty years for the YWCA, an organization that seeks to eliminate racism and sexual violence toward women; nonprofit companies need to strive for prevention as opposed to intervention. Taking questions from fellows about moving up in the nonprofit world, Bozeman-Evans’ recommendations were to implement a “strategic and visionary approach to development, the most important team” in a nonprofit, understand your hook, and constantly be thinking about what your company’s future needs will be in an ever-changing world.

Eileen Torrez ’13 is a current fellow in the Bay Area. We know it is early on in your fellowship. What has We recently checked in with her about her first few been the most surprising thing to you in your time months as a PP55 fellow at GreatSchools in San Fran- on the job? Has anything been particularly rewardcisco. ing so far? How are you finding the Bay Area? Tell us about yourself. What interests and ex- I’ve been surprised to discover how much opportunity periences did you have for impact still exists in the field of education reform. It’s at Princeton? What was encouraging to know that as long as you start someyour major and focus of where, adapt quickly, and stay true to your original study? Where are you vision, you can make a difference. I see that happening with GreatSchools and I really like knowing that I’m a from? part of the movement behind the scenes. I especially I come from Corrales, enjoy blogging because I get to read about the most NM, which is a small town recent debates and cutting-edge ideas in education, just outside of Albuquer- and process my own ideas about them. The best part que (think adobe houses, about my job is that I’m actually using the skills I corn fields and lots of learned in college. There is a serious need in small horses and goats). When public interest organizations for humanities stuI was younger I was always curious about the bigger dents – people who know how to write, who can do picture: What is the nature of things? Why do people solid research, and who bring their own perspecact the way they do? How much can we know about tive and voice to things. I feel good knowing that I’m the past and the future? At Princeton I got hooked on making a difference at a company that’s having such a metaphysics and epistemology and decided to major in real impact. philosophy. I explored the connections between San Francisco is, hands down, the most amazing city philosophy, language, and religion, ultimately traveling I’ve ever been in. A couple of times a week I go out and to India during the fall semester of my junior year to do something unique around the city. study Buddhism and then writing my thesis on Buddhist philosophy. I also studied Arabic and was part of What are your short and long-term career plans? singing and yoga groups on campus. How do you imagine your fellowship fitting in? I started this fellowship with the goal of developing Tell us about your host organization. What is its two things: my professional skills as a writer and my mission? What kind of work are you doing? understanding of how nonprofits operate. So far my GreatSchools’ mission is to help parents get a great office has been an excellent training ground on both education for their kids both at home and at school. fronts. I’ve also been gaining a lot of insight into the They started 15 years ago as a website of school more elusive aspects of running a business, such as profiles, with transparent information on academic per- the bridge between theory and practice. How does a formance and reviews by parents, students, and teach- nonprofit stay true to its mission in the midst of a comers. The idea is that the more parents can make petitive industry? How does it deal with internal clashes informed choices about where they send their kids to and interact with outside partners? Answering these school, the more the quality of schools will improve questions has been incredibly helpful for me as I over time. The site has since expanded and now in- consider how I might want to run an organization of my cludes content aimed at helping parents become more own someday. actively involved in their kids’ education. I’m not sure where I’ll end up in the next couple of My job is to act as [the CEO’s] assistant, which so far years, but I have some interesting ideas. I think I might has meant researching and crafting documents for take some time off and explore music for a while, then either internal or external purposes. For example, last come back to the nonprofit arena and do more manmonth I directed the writing of a paper for funders agement-focused work. I may even go to business illustrating the theory and practice behind our new local school! I’m really inspired by my boss’ story and I think engagement model. This month I’ll be working on the I could accomplish a lot in a similar role. I may end up same type of paper, but for our new website called doing something education-related, and I may not; I’ve GreatKids. learned one thing through this fellowship it’s that all social and cultural issues are intimately connected.


The Bay Area committee welcomed a new group of fellows, most of whom were new to the Bay Area, San Francisco and the AlumniCorps Community at the newly opened Exploratorium. After the fellows got settled into their jobs and a new city, we met up in North Beach, San Francisco, to experience "Off the Grid," a fun evening of food trucks and mingling. A special note of thanks to our eight new mentors this year, who are helping fellows get acclimated to their new jobs and new homes in the Bay Area!

This year we have four fellows in the Boston area, all working at Lawrence Community Day Public Charter School. We kicked off the fellowship year with a welcome party co-hosted by the Harvard Center for Public Interest Careers (CPIC), and we will be jointly organizing monthly seminars as well. At the first seminar of the year, the fellows went to the Food Project, which hosts a Princeton High Meadows fellow. The fellows harvested some food at a Food Project farm in Dorchester.

Sabrina Szeto ’12 and Diane Cho ’13, two fellows at the Housing Development Fund, recently celebrated the organization’s first energy efficiency loan. Sabrina has been organizing workshops for families to learn about saving energy and about available state rebates and financing. She also had the opportunity to co-write a proposal for a government-funded energy financing program. The two have been working in Bridgeport to administer a survey that will track the impact of Neighborworks America, which works to create opportunities for lower-income people to live in affordable homes in safe, sustainable neighborhoods.


Scott Taylor '75 and Rana Campbell '13 at the New York Welcome Dinner

The new fellowship year is off to a great start for Chicago’s ten fellows. We launched the fellowship year with an informal picnic and concert in Millennium Park in August, followed by an orientation dinner in September at the home of Lindsay and Jeremy Wall ’02. The orientation allowed the Chicago Committee to convey information about the Chicago program to fellows, but it was also a great opportunity for fellows, mentors, mentors at large, and committee members to meet and mingle. The fellows have also been matched with two mentors each, and they have started their weekly seminars, half of which are shared with Public Interest Program fellows from the University of Chicago and Northwestern. John Fish ’55, Chair of the Princeton AlumniCorps Board of Directors, led the first seminar to give fellows an overview of Chicago politics, and subsequent seminars have been hosted by a variety of individuals and organizations, including Illinois Senator Heather Steans ’85, Interfaith Youth Core, Civic Consulting Alliance, Bethel New Life with Nat Piggee ’86, and Teach for America with Josh Anderson ’04. Michael Collins ’11 also led fellows on a tour of North Lawndale, a community in which many fellows have been placed through the years through a partnership with the Steans Family Foundation. An additional partnership with Steans has supported the efforts with our Community Volunteers initiative, which continues to grow and thrive. The Project 55 Chicago community also hosted an event in August at the home of Kirsten Ekdahl-Hull ’99 to honor the fantastic work of John Fish ’55 and Vince Anderson ’65, who have built and sustained the Chicago program over the years but are both “retiring” from their official roles on the Chicago Committee. We are so thankful for all that they’ve done for our program and, with their support, have successfully transitioned leadership and management of the program to a strong, diverse Committee. This winter, Community Volunteers in Chicago will host a thank-you dinner for all those involved in the program this past year.

The fellowship year officially kicked off in August with our kickoff event during which fellows got to know each other better and hear valuable workplace advice from former fellow and Emerging Leader Shena Elrington '04. See the photo below from the kickoff. September's Welcome Dinner, graciously hosted by Mike Robbins '55 and Lois Robbins s’55, was a great opportunity for the fellows to mingle with one another as well as meet mentors, the Steering Committee, and the New York AlumniCorps community. Fellows enjoyed a September Saturday afternoon together taking the ferry to, exploring the landscape of, and taking in the views from NYC's Governor's Island. This year's seminar series began with a tour of Central Park, thanks to Judy Hole Suratt s'55 and the Central Park Conservancy. It was a beautiful October day for walking through and learning about New York City's most famous park. After the tour ended, fellows stayed in the park to picnic and socialize. November's seminar was an enlightening conversation with Founder and CEO, Charles Best, who shared his experiences of creating his revolutionary non-profit and his vision for how philanthropy will continue to evolve given the advances in technology. Katie Ko '09 joined Andrew Protain '08 as Co-Chair of the New York Steering Committee. They look forward to making the rest of the year a memorable one for the fellows, and they are grateful for all the efforts of the rest of the Steering Committee members, which include Scott Taylor '75, Dominic Michel '70, Sam Suratt '55, Judy Hole Suratt s'55, Bridget Wright '11, Julie Leary '12, Sarah Twardock '11, Jess Jardine '10, Brandon Joseph '12, Kristen Smith '03, and Rosa Pizzi '03. A fun time will be had by all at December's holiday party graciously hosted by Scott Taylor '75 and Courtney Taylor s’75.

The Philadelphia Area Committee is looking to recruit active volunteers to help grow AlumniCorps’ impact in the region. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Paul Nehring ’10 at or at 609-921-8808.

The DC Area Committee has been pleased to put together several successful events for the current Project 55 fellows in Washington, DC. On September 15, AlumniCorps Board Member Bill Leahy ’66 and his wife Chris Leahy s’66 welcomed fellows, committee members, former fellows, and mentors into their home in Chevy Chase, MD for a formal Welcome Dinner. The dinner was a great opportunity for fellows to meet one another and others involved in AlumniCorps, and reinforced the notion that a Project 55 fellowship is more than a job; it also represents becoming part of a larger community. On September 29, the DC Area Committee hosted fellows at Teaism in Penn Quarter for an Orientation Event. Many different topics were discussed, ranging from how to adjust to living in a new city to how to navigate the office environment to how to make the most of your mentor-mentee relationship. On October 10, the fellows convened for their first seminar, focusing on the topic of Community Development. Hosted at the offices of Partners for the Common Good by former fellow and DC Area Committee Co-Chair Dana Weinstein ’12, the fellows spoke with CEO Jeannine Jacokes and Chief Credit Officer Kristin Faust to learn more about community development financial institutions like PCG and the role they play in advancing economic justice and opportunity for low income people and communities. On October 15, DC Area Committee Co-Chair Rachel Sverdlove ’11 and Social Chair Amy Sweeny ’12 hosted a dinner for P55 and TAN Affiliate fellows at Zorba’s in Dupont Circle. In addition to several Project 55 Fellows, there were also fellows and volunteers from the programs of Harvard, Washington and Lee, and Dartmouth. The evening was a great opportunity for the fellows to get to know some of the TAN Affiliate fellows and learn more about how other young people in the Washington metropolitan area are engaging in public interest work. Future events include a workshop-style seminar on Managing Workplace Relationships with DC Area Committee Mentoring Chair Lisa Lazarus ‘02, and a holiday dinner.


John Fish ’55, Chair Kathryn Miller ’77, President Joe Sengoba ’10, Secretary Charles F. Mapes, Jr. ’55, Treasurer Thomas D. Allison ’66 Margaret Crotty ’94 Kirk Davidson ’55 Rebecca Deaton ’91 Andrew Goldstein ’06 Anne T. Goldstein ’79 Kef Kasdin ’85 Stanley Katz h’21 Debra Kushma ’80 William R. Leahy, Jr. ’66 Tom Magnus ’77

Dana Malman Warren ’03 Kathleen McCleery ’75 Arthur McKee ’90 Dominic Michel ’70 Paula J. Morency ’77 Anthony C. E. Quainton ’55 Margarita Rosa, Esq. ’74 Marsha Rosenthal ’76 Robert Sellery ’55 Judy Hole Suratt s’55 Leesy Taggart ‘78 Scott Taylor ’75 Richard E. Thompson ’55 Richard O. Walker ’73 R. Kenly Webster ’55

Andrew C. Nurkin, Executive Director Rachel Benevento, Program Director, Emerging Leaders Sharon Keld ’80, Development Officer Paul Nehring ’10, Program Director, Princeton Project 55 Fellowships David Nelson, Office Administrator Caryn Tomljanovich, Program Coordinator, Community Volunteers

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Shared Effort - Fall 2013  

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Shared Effort - Fall 2013  

Shared Effort - Fall 2013