Page 1

20 14

Creating, Making, & Innovating

Winte r

The Handmade Issue


4 Design learning: Collaborating, Creating, & Finding Meaning

6 Gina Made It

14 50 years of the Senior school

18 Breaking the Mold

Grade 6 students and faculty member Fred Moreno raft the annual class trip to the Laurel Highlands.


Blame the Teachers


Ally Il-loom-inated


Fall sports Wrap-Up


Alumni events


Reshaping Energy Landscapes


Supporting Community, STEM, & Athletics


Class Notes


In Memoriam



the Youghiogheny River on

Reunion Weekend 2013



The Maker Movement Dear Readers of Sewickley Speaking, In each issue of the magazine, we seek to celebrate the achievements of students, faculty, and alumni in a range of endeavors, and what we have found over the years is an inspiring array of talent just waiting to be uncovered. In this particular issue of Sewickley Speaking, we explore how students and alumni are following their passions to make things that are decorative and useful, fun and even fanciful, and at times provocative and surprising. Whether handcrafted or machine-tooled, the results of our featured designers and artists emanate from a creative fount that is both personal and reflective of unique life experiences. Our mission makes explicit reference to engaging “hearts, minds, and hands,” and these elements are integral to any successful endeavor, but perhaps most aptly illustrated by the work of designers and makers, artists and craftspeople. Our featured stories in this issue include Regina von Schack ’99, who designs pretty and practical hair accessories that are quickly gaining popularity across the nation; Eric Weil ’92, who was inspired by Ghanaian woodworking artists to create comfortable custom concrete furniture; and Grade 3 student Ally Aufman, who has made a number of successful YouTube videos chronicling her weaving of inventive and original bracelets. You will also read about our new Senior School Design Studio, where current students are provided with the opportunity to make things and explore the “maker movement,” which seeks to promote making and building, creating and innovating. With the right tools and a little imagination, the power of making can yield a range of remarkable and impressive results. The skills that are brought to bear to make things are the result of discipline, focus, and tenacity. Translating a vision into a tangible object, converting an idea into substance, demands a high level of imaginative and critical thinking; there are often challenging problems to be solved along the way to achieving a particular aesthetic goal, but our makers and craftspeople have toiled through to achieve wonderful outcomes. It is our pleasure to share their stories with you. Best,

Kolia O’Connor Head of School

Editor Haley


ContRibutors Lawrence

C. Connolly

Winthrop Palmer

Design Third Planet Global Creative

Scott MacLeod ‘77

Mandi Semple

Melinda Miller

Susan (Ratcliffe ‘55) Sour

Jon Riddle

Haley Wilson


Kolia O’Connor

Greta Daniels

What Do You Think? We welcome your letters and comments on this issue of Sewickley Speaking. We may edit your letters for length and clarity, but please write to or Mrs. Haley Wilson, Sewickley Speaking, 315 Academy Ave., Sewickley, PA 15143.

SA Helps Set World Record in Sport Stacking!

Submit Your Nominations for the 2014 Arts Hall of Fame The Arts Hall of Fame is a society reserved for alumni and former faculty who have distinguished themselves in the visual or performing arts at Sewickley Academy and have gone on to further artistic distinction in higher education and beyond. Visit to learn more about the criteria for eligibility and to submit your nomination. Nominations may also be submitted via mail to the Alumni Relations Office at 315 Academy Ave., Sewickley, PA 15143, or email to Nominations must be received no later than May 1, 2014.

1,135 Thank Yous With help from 404 stackers at Sewickley Academy, a new world record was set on November 14 as part of the 2013 STACK UP! According to the World Sport Stacking Association (WSSA), this year’s event exceeded all expectations with 555,932 stackers taking part on Guinness World Records Day – smashing the previous record of 483,658. Hailing from 30 countries, the stackers spanned the globe!

We are so grateful to the 1,135 donors who supported the Academy last year, and we invite you to view the 2012-2013 Annual Report, available online at

Heard on Campus

Be Social

When you see the little girl in the picture, try not to see her as crying out in pain; see her as crying out for peace. — Kim Phuc, the woman who as a girl was photographed

Access the digital issue at

running down the road after her Vietnamese village was bombed. Kim shared her message of forgiveness with the SA community in November.


” 2014


Design Learning: Collaborating, Creating, & Finding Meaning

By Senior School English teacher Lawrence C. Connolly

Janelle Sands ‘15 and Isreal Williams ‘15 work on designing a gear, which will be printed on the 3-D printer and then incorporated into the Gearbox, a piece of machine art incorporating LED lights and gears.

Drop by the new Senior School Design Lab, and you’re likely to see students writing on the walls. That’s alright. They’re allowed. Indeed, writing and drawing on the room’s urethane-coated surfaces is encouraged. According to Dr. Jon Cassie, head of the Senior School, “When you have a provocative question or a challenge you’re trying to address, it’s better to have people writing and sketching together than just approaching their problems in an abstracted verbal sense.” Thus, the new Design Lab provides a creative space where students can work together to incorporate science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics while grappling with large problems that cut across traditional disciplines. 4

“For example,” Jon explains, “consider the problems of overpopulation, waste management, declining energy resources. Dealing with such complex issues requires having different modes of thinking in the room at the same time. The engineer who can’t apply the perspective of the visual artist is not going to be as skilled a problem solver as the one who can do both. That’s the design approach.” Of course, it takes more than whiteboard walls to support the kind of creative inquiry that Jon has in mind. Thus, the lab is also stocked with an eclectic mix of creative supplies. Some are traditional (construction paper, scissors, glue), while others seem completely random (rubber figurines, plastic snow, toy cars). The broad

mix is important, Jon explains, because one never knows where projects might lead. So, when stocking the space, he did more than anticipate specific needs. He also bought things that, when assembled or juxtaposed in creative ways, might lead to unexpected revelations. But what if a project calls for something that isn’t in the Design Lab’s cabinets? In that case, students might consider going to the adjacent computer lab where Senior School technology teacher Cristy McCloskey has installed a new 3-D printer capable of fabricating plastic objects.

“So far we’ve made gears, whistles, a bottle, and a button,” Cristy says. “We even made a chalk holder that is being used in a classroom, and we might soon be printing parts for our robotics teams.” Although the print codes for many of these items can be accessed from catalogues, Cristy is encouraging her students to create original objects. “By printing their own designs, students learn the basics of 3-D modeling while discovering how ideas can come to life.” She gestures toward Isreal Williams ’15 holding a machine part that a few hours earlier existed only in his imagination. “Izzy’s over there holding his gear, playing with it, fascinated that he designed it.”

supplies. “Each group had a different design process. Some began by researching organisms adapted to similar environments, some made lists and sketches on the walls, and some brainstormed by looking through all of the goodies available in the space.” Two of her students, Catherine Anderson ’15 and Akansha Mazumder ’15, developed a creature capable of thriving in a desert environment. “He has claws and a trunk that allow him to dig and extract water from shallow aquifers,” Akansha explains. “And his body is covered in a rock-colored shell, which offers both protection and the ability to blend in.”

Currently, students in Cristy’s Interactive Design and Development class are working on a project called the Gearbox, a piece of machine art incorporating LED lights and student-designed gears.

The creature’s most distinctive feature, however, is its set of multiple eyes, which provide a 360-degree view of its surroundings – an important ability for a creature unable to turn its head while its taproot snout is anchored to the ground.

And while computer students are fabricating cogs, science students in Tracy Wazenegger’s ecology class are busy designing lifeforms. “I put the students in groups,” Tracy says. “And each group selected (at random) a different environment – desert, tundra, cave, tropical rainforest, or seasonal deciduous forest.”

“It was fascinating to watch the students design and then build their organisms,” Tracy says, and both Catherine and Akansha seem to share her excitement when talking about their creation, a model that helped them explore how physical characteristics work together to ensure survival.

After that, the students went to work designing and constructing models of their creatures using the Design Lab’s cache of

Other kinds of survival and adaptability were explored by Grade 9 English students, who created board games based on Tobias Wolff’s This Boy’s Life. Modeling their game designs on such favorites as Chutes and Ladders, Candy Land, Monopoly, and Life, the students explored some of the alternative paths that

the book’s young protagonist might have taken had he made better choices. Jon’s Sewickley Seminar class of freshmen has also made frequent use of the Design Lab. Last trimester, he challenged students to create a set of warning signs for a radioactive storage facility that would remain toxic long after today’s languages and symbols lost their meaning. “Patty Butz, our new director of teaching and learning, told me about how The University of Nevada, Las Vegas, did a program with their graduate students on designing a series of messages and warnings that would be understandable in 10,000 years. And I thought, ‘What a dynamite project to duplicate.’ So I did it with seven different classes, each class divided into smaller groups – about 15 groups total. And each group was charged with designing a warning message that would convey the notion of danger to a people unfamiliar with current languages or symbols.” To solve the problem, students made lists of possibilities, sketched diagrams, constructed models, and finally came up with proposals for a series of nonverbal, sensory-based warning signs that included synthetic bones and genetically-modified brambles of foultasting fruit. Since there was no guarantee that any one warning would do the job, the students proposed arranging the warnings in concentric rings around the site, thus increasing the odds of convincing trespassers to turn around and stay away. Jon is delighted with the results. “The ideas were visionary, way better than anything the graduate students at the University of Nevada had come up with.” Clearly, the Design Lab is helping students learn the creative and collaborative skills needed to deal with an increasingly complex world.

Winter 2014

Ecology students designed lifeforms based on a particular environment and constructed models of their creatures using the Design Lab’s cache of supplies.


Gina MadeIt! A box of colorful headbands handmade by Regina von Schack ’99 sat untouched under her bed in her New York City apartment. Then one day, her younger sister, Mimi ‘10, then a senior at Marymount School of New York, discovered them, claimed a few for herself, and wore them to school. It wasn’t long before her classmates began asking her where she got her headbands. Mimi’s response? “Gina made it!” As fate would have it, Mimi’s reply is now the name of Gina’s company whose collection of hair accessories is adorning women and girls’ heads across the globe. Gina, who at that time had just completed her interior design degree at Parsons, was only experimenting with hair accessories as a hobby. “For a few years, I was making bridal, bachelorette, and birthday headpieces for my close friends and family,” explains Gina. “We would go out for someone’s birthday and I would bring the birthday girl a fun, whimsical headpiece that had giant snowflakes or butterflies on it.” Noticing her creative talent, a friend encouraged her to start experimenting with everyday headpieces. And so, in 2010, she began to experiment with more conventional headbands. The feedback from family and friends was all positive, but also vying for her attention was the interior design company she had just launched, and consequently, the reason she pushed the box of headbands under her bed. “When my headbands were getting noticed on my friends and sister, I thought I might be on to something, but I didn’t think the timing was right because I had set out to do interior design,” says Gina. However, she soon realized that the freedom of being her own boss combined with her design know-how and expertise made exploring the market for headbands a worthwhile venture.

Regina von Schack ‘99 - the face behind the bands.


Winter 2014

Photos by Devlin Shand

Gina Made It products are made in a worker-owned factory in North Carolina, which has had growth and prosperity as a result of the product line’s popularity.

“Previously, I had worked with a few start-ups, including Smathers & Branson, as well as many interior designers who had small businesses, so the territory wasn’t completely unfamiliar.” Gina knew the ins-and-outs of trade shows, working with manufacturers, and just how many bridges one has to cross before finding success as a start-up company. She attributed her ability to network, balance, and plan to her Academy education. A former class president and all-star athlete, Gina says, “The Academy provided an environment where I excelled and built confidence in whatever I was working on; that served me well.” But the string of events that happened over the next three years is what Gina can only describe as “serendipitous.” With her headbands in hand, she visited boutiques in New York, Connecticut, and the Hamptons and asked them to sell on consignment. The storeowners reported back that the knotted ribbon design was the bestseller and that their customers raved about the comfort of the bands. Now confident that she could refine her product line to the knotted ribbon design, Gina traveled to London and Paris to explore high quality ribbon manufacturers. However, she was pleased to find that much of the highest quality ribbon was made here in America. By April of 2011, thanks to Gina’s determination to push out her products to boutiques on the East Coast, Gina Made It (GMI) had orders from the popular clothing line Lilly Pulitzer via shops in Palm Beach and Delray,


Florida. “Those orders were the game changers and really put me on the map,” she recalls. As fate would have it, Lilly Pulitzer had just discontinued its hair accessories, and Gina’s headbands, which played well with the Pulitzer color palettes, happily settled into a niche in the market. A flood of orders followed. Gina quickly realized that she could no longer, even with the help of her mother, sit at the kitchen counter and make the bands to fill orders. Understanding that more and more consumers want to know where their goods are made, Gina wanted to make sure that her products be made in a reputable factory. Through research of American manufacturers, she stumbled on a worker-owned, eco-friendly factory in North Carolina. In early 2012, she traveled there to train several of the women to make the headbands and immediately knew it was a perfect match. She still uses this factory today. “The people at my factory are not only talented, but they are lovely people, which I feel creates products with good energy behind them.” When Gina first commissioned the mill for her products, there were only six employees. Now, two years later, the staff has grown to 14, all of whom are part owners, and four of whom GMI employs full-time. “It’s a new and progressive business model for the textile industry in North Carolina,” explains Gina. This factory, in particular, is looking to create quality products and business relationships where they can not only grow with

The Gina Made It product line has grown to include leather headbands, pony scarves, and the über popular bun bow® (pictured here), which has recently been featured in pop culture blogs and publications, including the December issue of “People Stylewatch.”

companies like Gina Made It, but also take on larger orders from much bigger corporations with a network of other mills in the area. “I loved watching this mill take off in the community, and am proud to have had a hand in its growth and prosperity.” In fact, Gina says it’s what she’s most proud of. Along with the factory, Gina works with a team of freelancers (publicist, photographers, designers, models) whose businesses and careers have all grown alongside hers. She takes a hands-open approach to the business world around her. “You can be one of two people in this business – fearful and protective of your company relationships – or open, willing to share, and excited to collaborate. Open and collaborative is way more fun,” she explains.

For Gina, the journey to where she is today has been a series of “pinch-yourself” moments – ranking high on that list is when she receives an email from a customer who says how much she loves GMI products. “I’ve always said that one day I wanted to have my own business, but I didn’t know what or where. I thought it was interior design, but it was the hobby that I always took for granted.” While Gina describes her story as serendipitous, a strong argument can be made that it was her diligence, creativity, and business sense that has put her start-up on the path to perpetuity. However you slice it, one thing is for sure, success has come to a deserving recipient. Winter

Her business sense has served her well. The GMI product line has grown to include leather headbands, pony scarves, and the über popular bun bow®, which has recently been featured in pop culture blogs and publications, including the December 2013 issue of People Stylewatch. As a nod to the flagship headband, all the products have knotted

designs, or as GMI has termed it, are KNOTical® in nature. “These products are really for every woman and girl – mothers, daughters, the fashion forward, or the girl next door.” Her products have even been spotted on celebrities and their children. Today, Gina Made It products can be found in 150 stores across the U.S. as well as 20 stores in Japan, Canada, and the Caribbean.



Reunion Weekend 2013 To kick off Reunion Weekend on October 11, 2013, Middle and Senior School students joined alumni to celebrate the induction of Sarah Grenert-Funk ’00 and Gloria Lozano ’00 into the Sports Hall of Fame. That evening, alumni from all classes gathered for the Reunion Gala where cocktails, dinner, and photo displays set the stage for great conversation among old friends. On Saturday, alumni, parents, faculty, and friends celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Senior School. In attendance were special guests and former faculty and staff members Jim Cavalier, Myrta Macdonald ’45, Scott Carter, Dr. Joyce Ferris, Larry Hall, Bob Eldridge, Debra Wood, Vicki Polinko, Judith Lackner, Kate Dresher, and Thom McLaughlin who shared stories from their many years at the Academy. To conclude the celebration, Jim Cavalier was honored as the founding head of Senior School and was presented with a sculpture made by Madeleine Lord ’66.



3 1. The newest members of SA’s Sports Hall of Fame, Gloria Lozano ’00 (left) and Sarah Grenert-Funk ’00 (right), with varsity girls’ lacrosse coach Cheryl Ann Lassen. 2. At the assembly that kicked off Reunion Weekend, students perform the 1967 hit “The Age of Aquarius” to set the tone for the decade when the Senior School got its start. 3. Dana Friedman ‘83, Lindsey Smith ’83, and Tad Coburn ’83.




6 4. Members of the Class of ’73 celebrate 40 years of friendship. 5. Classmates Karen (Provost ‘88) Riegert (left) and Fraser (Zimmerman ‘88) Traverse (right) with husbands Jamie and Brad. 6. Alumni, parents, faculty, and friends celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Senior School. Winter 2014


Reunion Weekend 2013




’83 ’88 12


Class of 1973 - 40th Reunion Row 1: Nancy Fauntleroy, Colleen Carr. Row 2: Diane (Prine) Stewart, Sally (Brettholle) Sailer, Sandra (Gochenour) Brink, Mark Coulson. Row 3: Kit Liggett, Debra (Brinkworth) Leese, Cassie Metcalf, Linda (Hawk) Kluge, Don Carton, Robin (Ruse-Rinehart) Barris. Row 4: Kim (Kendrick) Cuneo, Deborah (Butteri) Akers, Geoff Poister, John Poister ’68. Row 5: Barbara (Lantzsch) Roche, Robin Hays, Malissa Ruffner. Missing from photo: Bill Kleeman, Derek Martin, Rob Price.

Class of 1978 - 35th Reunion Row 1: Ken Kendrick, Paul Scioscia. Row 2: Peter Doyle, Natalie (Hansen) Weinsz, Lee (Jackson) Warner. Row 3: Claire Kendrick, Heather Semple, Ted Stevenson, Bill Berry. Row 4: David Volk, Sean Behun.


Class of 1983 - 30th Reunion Row 1: Tim Volk, Alix (McGinnis) Giometti, Sandra (Mack) Cook. Row 2: Mike Fitzgerald, Tad Coburn. Row 3: Bill Goehring, Brian Nicotero, Dana Friedman. Missing from photo: Peter Scholl.

Class of 1988 - 25th Reunion Row 1: Jennifer Markus ’89, Sarah (Brackin) Kenny ’91, Kim (Harris) Hassell, Kent Fisher, Katie Heagy-Glass, Karen (Provost) Riegert. Row 2: Darren Torbic, J.B. McCarthy, Josh Szabo ’89, Brad Busatto, Rob Peirce, Mark Moore, George Long, George Linge, John Fincke, Fraser (Zimmerman) Traverse, Cathy (Schroeder) McMillan.

Class of 1993 - 20th Reunion


Row 1: Greg Walters. Row 2: Jason Long, Beth (Yates) Kaufman, D. Sculley, Frank (Demel) Olszewski, Jason Fincke, Jonathan Glance, Elvira Eichleay, Melissa Morris, Samir Marwah.

Class of 1998 - 15th Reunion Grant Martsolf, Ryan Thompson, Katie (Joy) Rosinski, Tracy (Johnson) McKinney.

Class of 2003 - 10th Reunion Peter Fedyshin, Amy Shah, Leslie Frey, Kacey (Wells) McAleer, Megan Steck, Patrick Schneider.





Ye a r s of the Senior School Fifty school years have passed since its inception. In the “50” above, alumni and students describe the Senior School – in three words or less.

1963. The year Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, and The Beatles invaded with a new sound. A year when one computer filled an entire room, and the grief over the death of a charismatic, young President filled the hearts of Americans. It was in this setting that our Senior School was born as the only coeducational private school in Pittsburgh – its collegiate model just as innovative as the times. “We wanted something different – top academics, certainly, but in an environment that was more like a college – a place where the students could make their own decisions about how they wanted to use their free time. In 1963, that was a very innovative concept,” says founding Head of Senior School Jim Cavalier.

See the Senior School through the decades. 14

1960s 1960s 1980s 1970s

1960s – On October 6, 1963, the new Senior School was dedicated with James Cavalier as head. His warmth and genuine concern for his students and faculty immediately endeared him to the community. The Senior School graduated its first class in 1966. 1970s – Reflecting students’ growing interest in environmental issues, foreign policy, and world literature, the school’s curriculum was expanded to include such subjects. Also, much to the liking of the students, the dress code was relaxed to reflect the “mellowed out” times. 1980s – As enrollment grew to include students from all over the greater Pittsburgh region, so too did the campus with the construction of the John C. Oliver Science Building, and the expansion of the Senior School library and classrooms.



2000s – With the addition of Mandarin Chinese and the launch of the Global Studies program, a Senior School education became even more globalized. Also in this decade, Academy athletic teams claimed four state titles.


1990s – Students in the ’90s were encouraged to explore and appreciate the world beyond their own borders by taking advantage of the new opportunities for student exchanges and foreign study. A community service requirement was also implemented to promote a connectedness to the community at large.


Blame the Teachers By Scott MacLeod ’77

So often, our alumni sing the praises of the teachers they had at the Academy – acknowledging them for not only teaching academics, but for teaching about life. For Scott MacLeod ’77, the spirit of those teachers who inspired him more than three decades ago live on in his own classroom, 3,000 miles away from Sewickley. I suppose Mrs. Hutchinson and Mr. Sector are to blame for the time I fell off my desk, dressed as Zeus in a toga and ivy crown, presiding over a debate in the Council of the Gods. I was teaching a unit on The Odyssey in my 10th grade English class. I had put my chair up on my desk and didn’t notice how far I was inching back during the debate. Thankfully, I put out my free hand – the other was clutching a lacrosse stick, which acted as my staff and thunderbolt – and caught myself against the whiteboard before I completely tumbled off my makeshift throne. How did I get here? And how are Mrs. Hutchinson and Mr. Sector, and a whole lot of other SA teachers to blame? After a successful bout with cancer more than 10 years ago, I decided to leave the advertising business and do something more important with my life. I spent a few years in the non-profit world, including several with Breakthrough Collaborative, the national organization that supports Summerbridge Pittsburgh, and then decided to follow a dream I had as a child: becoming a high school English teacher. I recall vividly thinking about my teachers at SA. I could see their faces, hear their voices, even after more than 30 years. In contrast, I couldn’t remember the names of many of my business contacts after only a few years.

period, during which we concocted countless theories about what had happened to our teacher, Mr. Simmons emerged from the closet dressed in a strange costume and even stranger mask. He made no comment about his appearance and proceeded to direct us to a chapter on differential equations. My biggest inspiration as an English teacher has definitely been Mrs. Polinko. We thought she was the coolest teacher when she played “White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane during a unit on Alice in Wonderland. As a musician, I’ve taken this even farther: “Tales of Brave Ulysses” (Cream) for The Odyssey, “Machine Gun” (Jimi Hendrix) for All Quiet on the Western Front, and many more. But the greatest gift from Mrs. Polinko has been Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse, which was my favorite book in high school. A few years ago, I was rummaging around in our English department book room and spotted some old, torn, paperbacks stuck way in the back on one of the top shelves. I pulled one down and discovered it was a copy of Siddhartha, which the inside cover indicated had not been used since 1974, about the time I read it. I taught the book that year, and it has become the favorite of many of my students. The book becomes a catalyst for self-reflection, which culminates in a presentation of students’ own journeys, some of which are heart-wrenching and daring in their candidness, ranging from suicide to sexual orientation. Of course, there are more inspirations: Mr. Gray, Mr. Diven, Mrs. Coleman and others. I blame them – and thank them all.

I’m now in my eighth year of teaching at a public school in a suburb of San Francisco. My former teachers continue to inspire me. Mr. Sector inspired in me a love of ancient history. I can still see him, in his room tucked away at the end of the hallway, standing in front of the class, dapper and dignified, telling us about Demosthenes – “old pebble-puss” he called him – or an Egyptian pharaoh. Mrs. Hutchinson fueled this love of ancient history with her annual Latin banquet, for which we dressed in togas and ate spaghetti. Someone once told me you have to be a bit goofy to teach high school, and I agree with that. But you need some encouragement too. For me, I remember Bizarre and Extreme Day, a day when students and teachers dressed up in outrageous outfits. Mr. Simmons definitely made the biggest impression. Always reserved and punctual, Mr. Simmons was never late for class, so it was odd that he was not there when we sat down at our desks. About five minutes into the Scott MacLeod


school ’77 in his high


What Will Your Legacy Be? For sisters Susan (Ratcliffe ’55) Sour and Missy (Ratcliffe ’60) Zimmerman, the legacy they wish to leave behind is one that will make a difference in the lives of Sewickley Academy students for years to come. Susan and Missy recently became members of the Pillars Society, which recognizes benefactors who have provided for the Academy’s future through a charitable gift such as a bequest, trust, or other estate plan. “In our financial planning, we will, of course, provide for our families first. And yet we have always been taught that we should ‘give back’ for the many advantages that have been provided for us. An Academy education was certainly the best foundation we could have had to move forward in our lives. We want to be sure that others who may not be able to afford such an education will get a small hand up from us. That is a really important part of the legacy we have chosen to leave.”


- Susan (Ratcliffe ‘55) Sour and Missy (Ratcliffe ‘60) Zimmerman

To learn more about joining the Pillars Society or to see a list of Pillars Society members, visit or call the Advancement Office at 412.741.2113.



The Aperiodix tile system, a collaborative creation of OSO Industries, SITU Studio, and architects Benjamin Sandell and Geoff Sosebee, creates beautiful wallscapes through the precise placement of triangular tiles in non-repeating geometric patterns.

10 18

g n k i a e Br d l o M e th


ble ustaina s , n r e d n o spiratio nd of m fect ble , just as his in r e iv p t a a m e is il rniture d artistic deta re and his for ries u f m o t n st tu cus nship, a ound in sculp eil’s OSO Indu un’s (’92) a il m e s t W f a Eric ic cr ackgr na. W h the authent of his b ftsmen in Gha design throug thetic. design, rom a blend a r e es c e, furnitur nf ngside tional a n Colleg is draw s working alo tional mold of tive, yet func li r e b O en nce ova into a und for experie break the conv nd Weil’s inn emy, bo ould translate d a c a A o e t t y peristrives ewickle r sculpture w s later. His ex e f concre o S m m o iu r f d r o f e ers ea ed n likely m graduat at his passio ner 20 y ed him to a div lid ig ic s r e E d n Whe w th a so rniture troduc he kno ave him stom fu llege in little did career as a cu t at Oberlin Co al work and g wasn’t until ful en But it ension in the success e art departm ations. ree-dim c h li t p calling h p is t a h is in h r d o s n d f e a n s c u en ilitie il fo ructs f possib oretical const nues that We array o e e v h a t ion in ure. actical foundat d different pr ul furnit if t u a e re tb he explo f functional, ye h-long o a mont n e io u t s a r e u r c o use op chose t ho tunity t r il o e p p W o . ulum n the ers w are give ir regular curric furniture mak tradis t n e d u e st eir th ian rlin art side of a with Ghana een part of th r conAll Obe nt project out b ic ou r e f o v t A a at h ting de e in indepen h to apprentic s and tools th xperience rela is embedded ue at nt st e that mo e same techniq a] was my fir effort th who created n a m u n h h t rs e ha employ nerations. “[G h respect to th ith woodcarve rried. These e it w ma g w r s d t o e f ld e the ork wor an g tion w l m I a o . ic s s t] dies, a w y u n r h o ie g p n ip in d a c d e struct surroun gifts when a m when [the re This idea of objects as that e h t in inating omage. re given last them, so e w t el’ in h wner was fasc a p h t t a u h ls o ‘c o o ign,” ily sto tt so and des e mean ool to the fam the spirit of it e r r a u it ls n r o sto e st body ring fu adds th coming to em of explo y e n r family e u r f furnitu ted me on a jo piece o tar s it and , e m o t ic. says Er



collaborations that result in beautiful surprises. OSO Industries recently teamed up with architects Benjamin Sandell, Geoff Sosebee, and Brooklyn-based SITU Studio to develop a system of inter-locking concrete tiles that create non-repeating geometric patterns. What looks like seemingly simple triangular pieces of stone ultimately reveal intricate and mesmerizing patterns. They dubbed their creation “Aperiodix” for its random application of pattern.

Eric Weil ’92 is the principal designer and owner of OSO Industries, a modern design firm that specializes in the creation of hand-crafted concrete furniture for custom interior design.

After returning to the U.S., Weil worked with a number of manufacturing companies that specialized in mold-making and sculpting before launching his own studio, OSO Industries, in 2002. “In college, art was all in theory, and afterward, I was able to get into more of the technical aspects of the work. In a lot of ways, the actual sculpture and construction part of what I do is self-taught and cobbled together through practice.” Armed with an appreciation of traditional furniture-making techniques and a fascination with the unexpected aspects of art, Weil began experimenting with concrete as his main material for fabrication. “I like the challenge of using non-traditional materials and bringing them into the home in a finished way that is unexpected. Concrete is great because it’s really a blank slate. You can form it in any shape or color you want.” Weil and his team have explored different techniques and applications of this modern material that juxtaposes the heaviness of concrete with the lightness of design. Some of the pieces are true cast concrete, made to last, and generally difficult to move, while others are created using a lightweight form of concrete, trowel-polished until they shine, and deceptively easy to manipulate and move. His furniture line includes

The “rollerboy,” a custom concrete stool that is deceptively easy to move due to its hollow construction and recessed wheels, was the design that launched OSO Industries on its quest to push the boundaries of mobility, functionality, and design.


large pieces such as dining tables and sleeping platforms, as well as smaller pieces like lamps, shelving units, and stools. The innovative furniture created at OSO Industries can be found in private homes, corporate offices, and commercial spaces all over New York and has been featured in a number of well-known publications such as Interior Design Magazine, House Beautiful, 360 Magazine, BizBash, and others. One week, Eric might install a custom countertop in the kitchen of an apartment on the Upper West Side, while during another he might work with a Manhattan store owner in the creation of a WWII bunker replica that doubles as a clothing display area. Success has not dulled Weil’s hunger for experimentation. He continues to push the boundaries of his art with new ideas and

The tile system seems to be part of a natural progression in Weil’s work that walks the line between the aesthetically beautiful and the scientifically precise. He likened the precise nature of his work with concrete to an experience he had in the art department at Sewickley Academy. “The photography teacher at SA, Mr. Wardrop, was completely passionate about photography, but was also very structured in the way that he approached it. At the time, he and I butted heads about this particular approach, but in retrospect, I can appreciate how structure helped his experience because what I do now is pretty precise. I have to measure everything, and the proportions need be absolutely correct.” It is clear that no single event was the sole catalyst for Eric’s extraordinary journey from Sewickley Academy student to successful furniture designer, but rather it is the sum of his experiences as a young art student at Oberlin, an eager apprentice in Africa, an entry-level manufacturer, and a burgeoning entrepreneur that has provided him with the insights and skills to succeed as both an innovative designer and a careful maker – walking the line between the mad brilliance of art and the meticulous precision of creation.


wo years ago, as Academy student Ally Aufman unwrapped a Rainbow Loom® on Christmas morning while her mother and father, Kim and Ed Aufman ’95, looked on, none of them could’ve imagined that Ally would become somewhat of a celebrity in the world of rubber band jewelry design. Today, the third grader’s YouTube channel, AllysBracelets, has more than 2.2 million views. “Whenever I first got the loom, I just grabbed it and started working on it, and stayed up half the night trying to figure out a design!” says Ally. Mastering that first design was all she needed to start her on the path of creating her own designs that she now shares with the world.


In June of 2013, the family posted a YouTube video of Ally’s first original design (the Plate) on Facebook, and she has been a YouTube sensation ever since. Now with a library of 20 tutorials, most demonstrating her original designs, AllysBracelets channel has more than 15,000 subscribers from more than 160 countries. “In the world of Rainbow Looms, there are many adults who create original designs and how-to videos, but what’s really remarkable is that a


9-year-old is coming up with all of these awesome things herself,” explains Ally’s mom, Kim. The video of one of Ally’s most popular designs, the Nautique (named for its resemblance to a nautical knot), got noticed by inventor of the Rainbow Loom, Choon Ng, who then encouraged his design team to get in touch with Ally. What resulted was the inclusion of two of Ally’s designs in the popular book, The Loomatic’s Interactive Guide to the Rainbow Loom – one of Amazon’s top 200 best sellers. Ally is one of only two children whose designs are featured in the book.

Grade 3 student Ally Aufman has become somewhat of a celebrity in the world of rubber band jewelry design. The 9-year-old’s YouTube channel, AllysBracelets, has more than 2.2 million views.

inated On the local level, Ally has grown to be the expert in Rainbow Looming – helping out as an instructor in the Lower School’s after-school Rainbow Loom class and teaching a small class at a local Learning Express toy store. When asked what the future holds for Ally and her loom, she sweetly smiles and says with confidence, “It’s only going to get better!” And we tend to believe her.

For the Aufmans, AllysBracelets has grown into a family affair as they work together to film the videos, respond to nearly all of the comments (sometimes 50 a day), and brainstorm names for Ally’s designs. With the help of her parents, Ally also developed an iPhone app that features her how-to videos. The app has between 25-100 downloads per day.


See how to make Ally’s Panther Pride Nautique bracelet at



Fall Sports Wrap-Up

Boys’ Soccer (21-3) Section Champions | WPIAL Champions | State Champions

On November 15, the varsity boys’ soccer team capped a most remarkable season by claiming the state championship when they defeated previously unbeaten Mountain View 4-2. More than 100 Senior School students traveled four hours on pep buses to support their classmates in Hershey. Earlier in the season, the Panthers defeated Beaver County Christian to capture the WPIAL Championship for the sixth time in school history. In the PIAA quarterfinals, the Panthers avenged a regular season loss to a talented Mercyhurst Prep team by defeating the Lakers 2-1. JP Bowell ’14 and Steven Munn ’14 led the team in goals and assists and each earned All-WPIAL honors; Steven was selected All-State for the second year. Keegan MacDougall ’14, Jack Matten ’14, Grady Moyer ’14, and Erik Dietrich ’14 were stalwarts on defense to help support goalie Jackson O’Neill ’16.


Girls’ Soccer (12-8-3) WPIAL Third-Place Finish | PIAA Qualifier

Despite being seeded seventh in the WPIAL tournament, the varsity girls’ soccer team upset No. 2-seeded Bishop Canevin in the quarterfinals and then defeated New Brighton in the battle for third place to earn a berth in the PIAA tournament. Maggie DeWitt ’14, Melina George ’14, Paige Simakas ’14, and Ali Torrence ’14 were selected for All-Section and All-WPIAL honors.

Cross Country WPIAL Fourth-Place Finish | One Individual PIAA Qualifier

The varsity boys’ cross country team finished with the best record in school history with a 6-3 record in team meets. The Panthers finished fourth in the team WPIAL championships, one position away from earning a berth in the PIAA tournament. Griffin Mackey ’17 qualified for the PIAA individual tournament.

Field Hockey Despite playing the entire season short-handed, the varsity field hockey team battled all season. The Panthers were winless on the scoreboard, yet nearly pulled off the upset on three occasions. Congratulations to Sarah Duplaga ’14 and Caroline Breves ’15 for being selected to the All-WPIAL Team.

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Girls’ Tennis (17-6) Section Champions | WPIAL Finalists | PIAA Semifinalists

After going 12-0 in the regular season to earn the section championship, the Panthers swept through the WPIAL tournament until they were defeated by Greensburg Central Catholic. In the PIAA semifinals, the Panthers were defeated by eventual state champion Mercyhurst Prep. Samantha Gohh ’14 and Sydney Miggantz ’14 earned gold and silver in the WPIAL singles tournament and concluded their careers in the PIAA singles tournament. Jappman Monga ’14 and Amy Cheng ’14 captured the WPIAL doubles tournament and also advanced to the PIAA tournament.

Girls’ Golf (8-4)


WPIAL Finalists

For the second-straight year, the varsity girls’ golf team finished second in the section and second in the WPIAL championships. The Panthers established a new school record with a score of 188 when they defeated Seton LaSalle. Tanvi Rana ’15 qualified for the WPIAL individual championships and posted the fifth best score at the team championships with an 85. In the team championships, SA improved its score by 27 strokes from the previous year.

Boys’ Golf (18-3) Section Champions | WPIAL Champions | PIAA Third-Place Finish

4 1. The varsity boys’ soccer team celebrates its state championship victory against Mountain View. This is the third time in school history the team has won a state championship. 2. Jordan McClain ’14 moves the ball past a New Brighton defender. The Panthers won the game and earned a berth in the PIAA tournament.


4. The boys’ golf team had a successful season and claimed the WPIAL Championship and its ninth-straight section championship.


3. In the game against Shady Side Academy, Caroline Breves ’15 sets up to take a shot on goal.

En route to capturing a ninth-straight section championship, the varsity boys’ golf team established new school records for both 18-hole tournaments with a score of 378 in the Ponderosa Shootout and ninehole tournaments with a six-under-par score of 174. The Panthers broke 400 for the first time in the WPIAL championships, highlighted by freshman Jason Li’s 77. After claiming the team’s fourth WPIAL Championship, the Panthers advanced to the state team tournament (which is in its second year of existence) and finished six shots behind eventual state champion Holy Redeemer. Also, for the first time in school history, the Academy sent three individuals to states – Keenan Hickton ’14, Sam Duerr ’14, and Anthony Muscato ’15. Keenan also earned All-State honors for the second-straight year as he established a new individual scoring record.


Alumni Events





6 1. The Class of 2014 toasts the official countdown to graduation with hot chocolate and treats sponsored by the SA Alumni Council in December. 3. Scott Ferguson ’70, Jessica Handy ’89, Director of Alumni Relations Greta Daniels, Julie Achalabun ’94, and Alex Ball ‘92 catch up over cocktails in Santa Monica this fall. 6. At the Annual Alumni Ice Hockey Game, the elder alumni led from start to finish in a high-scoring game, ending up with a narrow victory of 9-6. The crowd was mesmerized with highlight goals scored by Ed Lally ’11, Connor Blood ’06, Dickey Thornburg ’06, and first-time game MVP Kenny Atwell ’08.



7 2. On Veterans Day, the community honored faculty, staff, friends, and alumni who have or are currently serving in the armed forces. 4. Philly area alumni gather at The Union League in October. Row 1: Zac Zaluski ’00, Kate(Beidemann ‘00) Heitzenrater, Alison Quinn ’06, Chris Edmundowicz ’12, Arthur Woods ’05, Shannon Wyatt. Row 2: André McCoy, Valerie Gaydos ’85, Ben Brozanski ’06, Arsen Nikiforouk ’10, Vik Pisipati ’06. 5. Jennifer (Clement ‘86) Kelley, Dennis Kelley, David Oliver, Trish (Elliott ‘86) Marcrum, and Ram Dhawan celebrate the season at the Alumni Holiday Party. 7. Classmates Matt Solter ‘06, Jacquelyn Gibbons ‘06, Cassandra Martin ‘06, and Benjamin Brozanski ‘06 at the Alumni Holiday Party.

Reshaping Energy Landscapes By Middle School Science teacher Jon Riddle

This summer, as the recipient of the Sculley Sabbatical, Middle School science teacher Jon Riddle traveled to Germany and the Netherlands to study alternative energy. The sabbatical, established in 1997, provides support for one faculty member each year to undertake enriching global travel. Energy is an important topic in my Grade 6 Earth Science curriculum and one which I have been passionate about since high school, so I was thrilled to receive the sabbatical to travel to Germany and the Netherlands to learn about how the people of these countries are reducing their energy consumption and using more alternative energy sources. My itinerary included Munich, Amsterdam, and a few small towns in between, chosen specifically for their notable energy innovations; one even boasted of having an “energy landscape.� This term intrigued me because energy and its consumption have so much to do with the topography of an area, the resources available, and the culture. So, essentially, each town or city has its own unique energy landscape.

Winter 2014

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I was particularly excited to visit the progressive town of Wildpoldsried, a small farming community near Munich that produces more than 300 percent of the energy citizens consume by capitalizing on wind, solar, and biogas (generated from manure produced on the nearby dairy farms). The excess energy that the community does not use is sold back to the national grid and is generating 4 million euro ($5.7 million) in annual revenue. In Wildpoldsried, about 200 private homes are draped with solar panels, wind turbines dot the ridges, and approximately 50 houses are connected to a network that uses the biogas for heat. The community does not just focus on the energy being consumed. It also invests in a natural wastewater treatment plant which can be toured by hiking the trails around the wetlands that serve as settling ponds and release clean water back into the local streams. The town began this initia-

Windmills dot the hillsides of the progressive town of Wildpoldsried, Germany. The town produces 300 percent more energy than its citizens consume.

tive in 1997 and through clever thinking, entrepreneurial spirit, and community support, became a blueprint for progressive approaches to energy. Another stop along the journey provided an additional glimpse of the marriage of entrepreneurial spirit and alternative energy, in this case through the repurposing of an obsolete site. The Energielandschaft (Energy Landscape) in Morbach, Germany, has turned an old American army base into an energy industrial park. Where ammunition bunkers once sat, rows of solar panels now coexist with dozens of wind turbines and two companies that are producing products made from the renewable resource of wood; one builds log homes and the other produces pellets for wood stoves that burn very efficiently. Unlike these smaller settings, the cities of Amsterdam and Munich have more complex urban environments and a much higher demand for energy. Both cities boast strong public transportation systems. In Munich, the subway system is connected to a robust bus network

26 26

In Amsterdam, the flat topography and dense layout make the bike the most popular way to travel. In fact, bike lanes have their own traffic lights and cyclists have the right of way.

to move citizens all over the city in a timely manner. Visiting with

tives on sustainability and alternative energy – not only related to

Michael Reithmeier, a teacher at our sister school, Erasmus Grasser

the successful projects that I witnessed while traveling, but also the

Gymnasium, I was able to see why he had no use for a car. Even in a

differences in our cultures and environments. Unfortunately, there are

country where designing and building cars is revered, the cost of fuel

difficulties for Americans who are trying to make large changes to our

and the ease of public transportation has caused many young people

energy use. Burning trash, producing solar panels, using electric cars,

to prefer participating in a car share rather than car ownership!

riding bikes, taking the bus, or dotting the ridges with wind turbines

Amsterdam was similar, but with even more transportation options.

each comes with its own set of concerns and obstacles.

Here, the bicycles nearly outnumber the population! The bike lanes

Despite the challenges of implementing change in our nation,

have traffic lights, and cyclists have the right of way. Near a central

students need to understand energy options and how our ener-

train station, I saw a bike parking garage that fit more than 2,500 bikes.

gy use changes the Earth. Someday I hope my students tackle the

The flat topography and dense layout make the bike an excellent way

energy challenges of their time and are a part of the reshaping of our

to get around; I even saw adults with bikes that could carry three

energy landscape.

children. When not walking the city or touring the canals by boat, I took the trams. They, too, were quick, clean, and frequent. During my week in Amsterdam, I rented an apartment in a residential neighborhood near the Van Gogh museum. Living among locals gave me more insight into their energy habits, and how they use, on average, nine percent less energy than American households. While the apartment was spacious, the appliances were petite. A very efficient washing machine held an incredible amount for its size, but it was not paired with a dryer – instead a large rack folded out to handle the drying. (Upon returning to the U.S., I purchased one of these drying racks and love it.) Much of their electrical energy is produced by burning trash in a large incinerator just outside of town. The garbage trucks have signs on them that read, “Making More from Waste.” In a typical city block, it is not uncommon to see two electric car-charging stations, often with cars plugged in. This spring, I will cover natural resources with my Grade 6 earth

Jon Riddle’s Sculley Sabbatical experience allows him to add new perspectives on sustainability and alternative energy in his Middle School science classes.

science students. My experience will allow me to add new perspec-

SWui mm n t ee rr 22 00 11 43


Supporting Community, STEM, & Athletics Plans Announced for Renovations to the Oliver Building & Means Alumni Gym Plans to enhance the Oliver Building and the Means Alumni Gym, renovations that are part of Phase II of the Academy’s Master Plan, will enable the delivery of advanced science curriculum and realworld learning experiences and support a campus culture of arts, athletics, and community collaboration. Together, the transformed facilities will enable the school to operate and thrive in a manner consistent with its mission.


How and what students need to learn in order to succeed in college and compete in today’s global economy has dramatically changed, particularly in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math. As a result, public and private educators across the country are being called upon to restructure and transform shared spaces and adopt new modes of learning that focus on the individual as never before.

The Means Alumni Gym

At the same time, how and where we interact as a growing community of alumni, parents, students, and friends of the Academy is changing, and our facilities must evolve not only to support the health and well-being of our students, but also to foster the bonds of friendship and loyalty. Sewickley Academy is uniquely positioned to meet these important challenges by transforming both the Oliver Building and Means Alumni Gym, with the help of our friends.

“The transformation of critical spaces to match new and advanced modes of learning and interaction will ensure that Sewickley Academy continues to deliver a rigorous and relevant education that effectively prepares students to succeed in college and beyond.”

Kolia O’Connor, Head of School

The Oliver Building

Equip expert faculty to teach science in a manner that prepares students to meet the demands of college and life in the 21st century. Transform and expand the Means Alumni Gym as part of a larger, multipurpose events center that supports the holistic needs of students and the community.

CAMPAIGN GOAL: $13.5 MILLION Proposed Timeline

Pending securing necessary building permits, Edgeworth Borough approvals, and funding: MaRCH 2014 Commence renovation of Oliver Building September 2014 Open Oliver Building January 2015 Commence work on the Events Center and Means Alumni Gym January 2016 Open the Events Center and Means Alumni Gym For more information about these projects, please contact Director of Advancement Melinda Miller at 412.741.2113 or



Success in Science As our region and country work to strengthen education in science, math, and technology, and as we increasingly support more student-centered learning, the Oliver Building’s capacity and amenities must be enhanced to support the high level of teaching and learning that is taking place and provide support for additional innovative teaching strategies in the future. Inspired & Integrated

Preparing for college science courses includes taking cross-disciplinary classes that cover multiple subject areas such as science, history, and literature. This advanced approach to integrated learning is most effectively supported by large and flexible spaces and provides opportunities for students to synthesize information seamlessly from different subject areas.

Competitiveness & Preparedness

Science pedagogy has changed. Today, colleges expect high school students to have undertaken a high level of sophisticated research, data collection, and analysis in hands-on, collaborative laboratory settings that reflect the collegiate setting.

Rendering of Oliver Building Facade

Academy: Oliver Building “This is innovation. It’s not simply an upgrade to a science building. The needs of today’s learners are distinctly different. Our vision is to respond to this shift in the way we deliver the curriculum and learning environment.”

Susan Zawacky, Ph.D., Science Faculty Member

A Place of Community The strong sense of community among our students, parents, faculty, staff, and alumni is an Academy hallmark we hold dear. Our goal is to create an indoor space where we can all gather together to celebrate important student milestones and Sewickley Academy traditions such as commencement, Founders’ Day, and our annual Day of Service. With Grades Pre-K through 12 on a single campus, it is important that our community be able to assemble under one roof. Health & Wellness

The number of students participating in athletics at the Academy and the number of sports programs and levels within each program have increased in recent years. As a result, there is a need to enhance the space for physical education classes and to provide safe team practice spaces during inclement weather. While 85% of our students participate in interscholastic athletics, the enhanced facilities will enable us to develop additional programs that will ensure health and fitness opportunities for the remaining 15%. Rendering of Means Alumni Gym and Events Center from Hazel Lane

“We have significantly expanded our athletic program over the past 10 years. A new facility will offer students and coaches 21st century learning and developmental experiences that they currently do not have.”

Win Palmer, Athletic Director



The Sewickley Academy Alumni App! Keep the alumni network in the palm of your hand. • Find and contact fellow SA alumni nearby. • Filter your search by class year, location, company, etc.

First-time users will need to authenticate their accounts through email verification. Sewickley Academy will need a valid email address on file in order to authenticate your account.

• Contact classmates and alumni through the directory. • Update your personal and professional info. • Sync up with your LinkedIn and Facebook accounts. • Follow SA happenings through the social media stream. • Access the SA archives. • Support your alma mater through easy and secure mobile giving. The SA Alumni App is free and available to all alumni iOS and Android users. To download, search Sewickley Alumni Connect in the App Store or Android Market.


Learn more at Questions? Contact

Numbers That Mean Something 4,857

alumni got their start at Sewickley Academy


athletic championships

40+ years of Lower

School Hall Sing


experience could launch a student on the path to pursuing her passion


years of the Seventh Pillar, the Senior School newspaper


years of Sewickley Academy

Supporting the Annual Fund is not just about this year’s bottom line. Your gift to the Annual Fund is part of an important tradition that supports our legacy of excellence today and impacts students far into the future. Please make your gift today at Winter

Office of Advancement | 315 Academy Avenue, Sewickley, PA 15143 | 412.741.2113 |




Academy German students at Erasmus Grasser Gymnasium in Munich, Germany, during the exchange in the early 1980s. The exchange with the school still exists today.

1940 Bill Arrott ’40 writes, “After I underwent CyberKnife surgery for two brain tumors (fortunately benign), my wife, Elizabeth, and I have returned to the ministry at the Fort Lauderdale Center for Spiritual Living and braved the new world of Internet marketing through with our own company BeneVita Distributors LLC (

1954 60th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

Stephanie (Culbertson ’54) Woolard and husband John love their wonderful house at the beach in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina. They celebrated their fourth anniversary at Thanksgiving, and had a delightful cruise earlier this year to Pompeii, Greece, and Ephesus.


Walter Floyd ’54 writes, “After the Academy I went on to Hotchkiss, then to Williams College for my bachelor’s. In my senior year I was recruited by the CIA (yes, I am allowed to acknowledge that now), and there I spent 33 wonderful, interesting years. More than half of that time I was stationed abroad, places like Laos, Cambodia, Cyprus, Greece, and Japan, where I met my wife, Taeko, of almost 40 years. When I retired, we moved from McLean, Virginia, out to our country place in the Shenandoah Valley, about 20 miles southwest of Winchester, Virginia, and fairly quickly concluded that we needed to do something more in our retirement. We have a lovely view of the mountains and superb spring water, so we came up with the concept of a B&B or country inn. We built our little inn in ‘country style,’ but also with a distinct flavor of Japan, thanks to Taeko’s influence. We have been in operation for 12 years now, and ‘word of mouth’ has served us well. We have two Japanese style baths, using our great spring water, and we now have a Japanese chef serving gourmet food on the weekends. It has turned out to be

really fun. We meet fascinating people, and we are never bored! Take a look at our website (, and come visit and share your memories about your time at Sewickley Academy.”

1957 Kay (Graham ’57) McCullough reports: “Our family is expanding. Of our six grandchildren, one granddaughter has been married for a couple of years, and another one is being married in May. The whole family (including a couple of ‘significant others’) came to Naples to be with us for the Thanksgiving week – 14 in all. Sam and I are well and love being able to spend our summers in Pennsylvania and our winters in Florida. We have the best of both worlds.” Dale and Craig Wilson ‘57 took their whole family to South Africa for their 50th wedding anniversary over Christmas and New Year’s 2012/2013. “It was a magical trip – Cape Town, Victoria Falls, and safari camps in Botswana,” writes Craig.

1959 55th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014





’62 Stephanie (Culbertson ’54) Woolard and husband John enjoy a cruise on the Mediterranean. Dale and Craig Wilson ’57 with their family in South Africa. Five of Sam and Kay (Graham ‘57) McCullough’s six grandchildren. Stephanie (Rice ’62) Ellis and husband Michael (center) enjoy retirement with family. Peter ’57, Tabby ’62 and Phil ’60 Amerman catch up on the porch of Tabby’s home in the Adirondacks this past summer.

1960 The Irish Boys, The Civil War Letters of the Irish Family, the book written by Harton Semple ’60, was published this fall. The culmination of 20 years of work, it chronicles eight generations of the Irish family, including 136 priceless letters written during the Civil War. Charlotte (O’Neil ‘51) Oliver is a direct descendant of the Irish family. Harton wrote Sewickley Cemetery, History of the Sewickley Valley Found in Sewickley Cemetery in 2010, and The Arcadia Postcard History of Sewickley in 2006. He is the executive director of the Sewickley Valley Historical Society.

1962 Emily “Tabby” Amerman ’62 and her husband, Jim, spent a dreamy six weeks in the Adirondacks this summer after she retired on July 12. She writes, “Classmates, come visit us in the coming summers!” She also visited brother Phil ‘60 in Atlanta, and will spend some of the winter in Tucson with brother Peter ‘57. “Jim and I hope to visit many of you as we make our back roads driving tour of the U.S. (My idea is to go no more than 55 mph, but we’ll see how long that lasts!) My sister, Lucy ’68, and I enjoyed the Academy reunion in Philadelphia in October! More people should come out next year.”

Winter 2014

Marni (Madden ’62) Eaton recently completed a fabulous quilt which was part of a block of the month project at her local quilt shop. “Block of the month quilts are offered by various quilt shops in person and online. It means that you get one quilt block to do each month and then the finishing kit. Everyone does the same quilt at the same time. I have lots of other quilting projects in the works – table runners, placemats, wall hangings, and four quilts that are in process. At the same time, I am knitting hats for grandchildren, scarves for the Seamen’s Church Institute, fingerless gloves for chemotherapy patients,


and trying to stamp my own Christmas cards. We get to spend lots of time with our grandchildren (my oldest son’s children) here in Wilmot and have a new Border Collie puppy.” The Eatons live on a 150-acre farm in New Hampshire. Stephanie (Rice ’62) Ellis writes, “Michael and I are enjoying our retirement. We took a cruise in April/May from Bangkok to Beijing and spent a week in China following the cruise. It was unbelievable to walk on the Great Wall and to visit the Terra Cotta Warriors. We spent Thanksgiving in Phoenix with our son and his wife. Mother spent Christmas with us on Kauai. She is still very active and living independently in California. She turned 90 in January, and I am blessed to still have her. She is in excellent health.” Liz (Fleming ’62) Frost sadly reports the death of her sister, Ellie, from cancer in October. “I was surprised and pleased at the stories some of my classmates related about her. On a more positive note, I have been working on my bucket list since retirement. I have had delightful trips to Lisbon, Portugal, the Douro River Valley Port Wineries, and central India where I enjoyed Delhi, the Taj Mahal, and the Gandhi River Bridge. I am headed to Sri Lanka and south India later this year.” All is well with Caroline (Lord ’62) MacKenzie who reports that she has “retired for the second time in November 2013 when my part-time contract as a federal grant administrative specialist came to an end. I am in transition mode, planning to sell my California house and move to my Hawaii house for the next adventure in retirement – beginning in April 2014!” Betsy (Burden ’62) Wilson and husband David accomplished their goal of visiting all 50 states with a visit to Wisconsin this fall. This is a trek they started “in earnest in 1999” when their older daughter went to veterinary school in Oklahoma. At that time, they had visited 35 states.



Diane (Beales ’66) Lobaugh recently opened an antique and fine furniture store in Three Oaks, Michigan, called The Front Room. Sewickley Academy alumni, friends, and faculty are welcome to stop in anytime. Special discounts are available for SA alums! Carol Semple Thompson ’66 was recently inducted into the inaugural class of the new Western Pennsylvania Golf Hall of Fame. The Western Pennsylvania Golf Association, one of the oldest amateur golf associations in the country (founded 1899) also inducted legendary golfer Arnold Palmer. Both Carol and Arnold were previously inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame and have won the USGA’s coveted Bob Jones Award for distinguished sportsmanship.

1967 Billie Spencer ’67 swam in the 2013 Senior Olympics (National Senior Games) in Cleveland, finishing in the middle of the pack (19th out of 37) in the 50-yard fly.

1969 45th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

40th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

Jaye Moyer ’74 and John Fenner ’74 eloped on December 17, 2012. “It’s been one year in the blink of an eye!” Jaye continues her psychotherapy practice in Central Valley and Manhattan, New York, while John recently left the public defender’s office and joined a private firm, specializing in Elder Law and Disability Rights (ELDR). In 2010, Connie (Wood ’74) Spencer and her husband, Chuck, adopted Alyona Sergevii Slusarchuk (16), from Ukraine. Three months later, through mutual agreement, adoption procedures began in her home country, and she became Ally Wood Spencer on September 23, 2010. On October 7, Ally landed back on U.S. soil – now as a U.S. citizen. “She is incredibly brave – especially because she knew very little English. While it was a hard change for us, it was a harder change for her: leaving teen friends and what family she had left, her culture, her language, even her favorite foods. Now, three years later, as her language skills improve, and her wonderful, wise, funny personality blossoms, I have fallen even more in love with her than I ever thought possible. Ally just turned 20, is excelling in cosmetology school in NYC, and loving the freedoms and opportunities she has here. She is a blessing!”




Newlyweds John Fenner ‘74 and Jaye Moyer ‘74 vacation on the Jersey shore. Heather Semple ’78; Anne (Marshall ’78) Kelley ; Simon and Susu (Cook ’78) Scott and their daughters, Rosie and Sheila; Mary Odom ’76; Daleen and Andrew Nimick ‘78; Anne (Blair ’37) Bauer; Claire Kendrick ’78 and David Stanton and their sons, Eli ’25 and Simon ’27.


1978 A visit from Cambridge, England, by Susu (Cook ’78) Scott and her family was the occasion for a reunion of Academy friends across the generations.



35th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

1982 After 20 years of law enforcement, PJ Freshwater ’82 retired on November 1. He writes, “I am recovering well from a serious injury received on the job in June 2012. I’m very grateful for my career and looking forward to the next act in ‘My Life, Part 2!’”

1983 Ruth Thomas-Suh ’83 is a journalist- turnedfilmmaker who has directed and produced an award-winning feature-length documentary titled REJECT. The film blends cutting-edge research with real-life stories, showing how social rejection can lead to physical pain, and even possible suicide or violence against others. Her initial exposure to the concept of social rejection and its potential ramifications came from the book The Shame Response to Rejection, written by her father, Dr. Herbert E. Thomas. Ruth previously directed the short film, Daniel: Where Faith Meets Science, about a boy’s recovery from a traumatic brain injury, and was also associate producer of the independent feature comedy Garmento. For more information, see

1984 30th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

Sarah Buescher ’85 at the Zugspitze in the Bavarian Alps. Fraser (Zimmerman ’88) Traverse with two of her three children, Jake (9) and Jane (4), at the fountain in Point State Park.

eled to Germany, including a visit to the Zugspitze, the highest mountain in Germany in the Bavarian Alps. John Zimmerman ’85 lives in a historic row house in old town Harrisburg where he heads the driver licensing bureau for PennDOT. His house was featured on the Holiday House Tour there last winter. Valerie Gaydos ’85 writes, “It was great to get together with Kemp Fuller ‘85, John Zimmerman ‘85, Elena (Foster ’85) Dryden, Malcolm Nimick ’81, Mimi Ross ’81, and Suzanne Masri ’81 in an impromptu gathering at the Sewickley Hotel right after Christmas. It turned out, not by any conscious design, that just about all of us there had grown up within the same few blocks in Sewickley just hundreds of yards away from each other! Yet, all of us now live in places so far away and all over the country. Not only was it a great time to

catch up with both old and new friends, but it was a wonderful opportunity to discover a few new things we never knew about each other growing up. It is great to have such a wonderful hometown, great classmates, and such a special alma mater!”

1988 Trevor Long ’88 recently starred in a new AMC drama, Low Winter Sun. Congratulations, Trevor! Over Reunion Weekend, Fraser (Zimmerman’88) Traverse and two of her three children went to visit the highly publicized and very popular duck soft sculpture floating on the river at Point State Park in Pittsburgh. “Rubber Duck Fever” gripped the city for a month this fall.


Sarah Buescher ’85 writes that she and her husband, Peter Cullen, are living in Washington, D.C., and doing well. They have been married a little over a year, and recently trav-

PJ Freshwater ’82 with his daughters Blythe, Sidney, and Paige at the Civil War Ball.






1989 25th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

Philip Coburn ’89 and family live in Buffalo where he is a physics teacher and coach of the newly-formed robotics team at the Nichols School. Philip was a civil engineer for four years before deciding to go into teaching. He is quite at home at Nichols because he spent many summers just across the border in Canada and comes from a long line of educators, including a grandfather who was head of school at Nichols for 32 years.

1990 Kenneth Gray ’90 and his wife, Anna, are busy moving Alliance Law Firm International PLLC, their law practice in Washington, D.C.,

into a new office space. The business keeps them busy, but when they aren’t working in the office, Kenneth likes to travel to Shenandoah National Park to do photography while Anna keeps up with her design and photography business, 2GRAYS. “We recently took a vacation to Toronto, Canada, and have been coming back and forth to Pittsburgh to visit family. It was great to connect with Alumni Associate Susan Sour and Director of Advancement Melinda Miller this summer and share Academy stories, especially those about Sewickley’s exchange program with Russia in the early 1990s.”

Philip Coburn ’89 and son James (10) enjoy a basketball game where Tom Droney ’10 was playing for Davidson University in Buffalo.


Atlanta, and I accepted a new role as chief administrative officer and general counsel at fi360, Inc., where I have been working for nearly five years.”

Kristina Fausti Broumand ’93 writes, “I was so sorry to miss the Class of ‘93 reunion, but enjoyed seeing updates and pictures on Facebook. 2013 was a whirlwind year as my husband and I moved once again, this time to

On November 5, 2013, Jennifer (Shively ’93) Satler was elected judge of the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas. “After I swear the oath of office and receive my commission, I will be assigned to the

In Perfect Harmony

Raised in a musical household (and son of former Academy choral director), Guy Russo ’06 started writing songs when he was 12 and has always enjoyed a wide range of music styles. He played and sang in a heavy metal band in middle school, sang in the school chorus, and played in the orchestra. As an Academy senior, he studied music composition with Dr. David Ed, who Guy describes as “one of the first people outside my family to instill confidence in my ability to create music.” Those early influ-

38 36

ences, along with The Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, and James Taylor, pointed him to where he is today.

my bandmate in Broken Fences. I was completely blown away with her voice and songwriting the first time I heard her, and we became prolific writing partners immediately.”

He and Morgan Erina, who together form the indie-folk duo Broken Fences, released their self-titled debut album in June 2012. Shortly after, their powerful lyrics and spellbinding harmonies captured a sold-out crowd at the South Side’s Club Café. “We had a lot of support from the local music scene here in Pittsburgh, and our first album worked out extremely well for us. Since then we’ve toured in Europe as well as the U.S. and had our songs used on the TV shows Flashpoint, Necessary Roughness, and The Young and the Restless,” says Guy.

In January 2013, Broken Fences released the five-track album Stormy Clouds, and will soon head to the studio to begin their next album. “There have been challenges along the way,” says Guy, “because we’re essentially a DIY (do-it-yourself) band, which means we book our own tours and deal with all the organization of routes and dates, but we have had some very successful tours.”

He studied music composition at Carnegie Mellon University and played with several different bands during his four years there. “But it wasn’t until after I graduated that I met Morgan Erina,

While Guy continues to perform with classical singing groups and tunes the occasional piano to pay the bills, it won’t be for long because this scrappy duo has future stardom written all over it. To listen to Broken Fences’ music and see tour dates, visit





family division of the court. I’m still trying to get used to hearing ‘Judge Satler!’ My husband and our 19-month-old son deserve all the credit in the world for their support. Sorry I missed the reunion events, but a county-wide campaign takes every bit of free time!” On November 11, 2013, Lt. Greg Walters ’93 spoke to Sewickley Academy students about the true meaning of heroism and sacrifice during his keynote address at the annual Veterans Day assembly.

1994 20th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

1996 Morgan Gabrielson ‘96 had lunch with former faculty members Larry Hall and Thom McLaughlin in January, where they had a great meal and lots of laughs.

Russell Fincke ’98 married Daphne Lin in Taiwan this past summer with their families in attendance. Russ and Daphne Lin are both ESL teachers in Taiwan. “We met in early 2006 and were dating soon after. The wedding was in March 2013, and almost the entire Fincke family was able to make the long flight over. They all enjoyed the sights (and especially the food). The wedding, which mixed a traditional Chinese wedding banquet format with some modern twists, was a great success! We’re now in a new, larger apartment in the Neihu area of Taipei and continue to teach students ranging from grade 2-12.” Vijay Makar ’98 writes, “My wife, Stacey, and I are expecting our first baby this January. We’re in Atlanta, but need to move back to Pittsburgh so our kids can take history from Dr. Barnes someday.” Stephanie (Madey ’98) Morton and her husband, Pete, are excited to announce the birth of their first son, Pierce Mathew Robert Morton, on September 27, 2013, in Newport, Rhode Island. He weighed 8

Morgan Gabrielson ‘96 and former faculty members Thom McLaughlin and Larry Hall catch up over lunch. Claire Elizabeth Wilmot, daughter of Andrew and Alissa (Cowden ’97) Wilmot. The Fincke family celebrates the wedding of Russ ‘98 and Daphne Lin Fincke in Taiwan. Charlotte and Pierce Morton, the children of Pete and Stephanie (Madey ‘98) Morton.

pounds, 6 ounces, and was 20 inches long. He joins big sister Charlotte who turned 3 in September. Laurel (Weller ’98) Noe writes, “My husband’s military career has taken us from Albuquerque, New Mexico, to outside of Boston, Massachusetts. It was quite a move, especially with two small children, but we made it! I’m looking forward to connecting with classmates who are in the New England area. I continue to enjoy staying home with my twin boys, who are now 2.”


On November 8, 2013, Alissa (Cowden ’97) Wilmot and her husband, Andrew, welcomed Claire Elizabeth Wilmot into the


Lt. Greg Walters ’93 visits with SA’s Science and Engineering Club to share his experiences on a nuclear submarine.



world. Her brother and sister, Blake (5) and Victoria (3), say that she is “so cute.” Mom and Dad are both thrilled!



1999 15th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

Elizabeth (Usaj ‘99) Igoe and her husband, Brennan, welcomed Isabel Rose Igoe on June 5, 2013. Big sister Sophie (2) was thrilled. The family is living in Boston.


Jessica and Jim Leety ’99 welcomed their third child, Nicholas William, on July 31, 2013. He joins sister Adalynn (5) and brother Jackson (2). “He was two weeks early, but is healthy and already adding to the ‘cacophony.’”




’02 Sophie and Isabel Rose Igoe, children of Elizabeth (Usaj ’99) Igoe and husband Brennan. Jim Leety ’99 with wife Jessica, daughter Adalynn, and sons Jackson and Nicholas. Margaret Elizabeth Funk, daughter of Joe and Sarah Grenert-Funk ’00. Lincoln Philip Knuppel, son of Keith and Kimberly (Hastings ‘02) Knuppel.

Sewickley Academy Sports Hall of Famer Sarah Grenert-Funk ’00 and her husband, Joe, welcomed their first child, Margaret Elizabeth, into the world on December 5, 2013.

2002 Kimberly (Hastings ‘02) Knuppel, husband Keith, and daughter Macie welcomed Lincoln Philip Knuppel into the world on September 25, 2013. Chelsey (Champ ’02) Trieu and Carly (Koval ’02) Reilly got together in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and Koh Samui, Thailand, this past summer. Chelsey graduated from Babson College in 2006 with a degree in marketing and went on to earn her Master of Business Administration from Carnegie Mellon University in 2009. Chelsey was married to Paul Trieu in 2012 and has been living in Beijing, China, for the past two years. Carly graduated from Penn State University with a degree in petroleum and natural gas engineering and has worked for ExxonMobil since 2007. She was married to Matthew Reilly in March 2012 and has been living in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, since November 2012.

2003 On November 17, 2013, David Flaherty ‘03 and his wife, Randi, welcomed their first child, Charlotte Eleanor Flaherty. She was born in Charlottesville, Virginia, where both David and Randi are nearing completion on 38

their doctorates in American history at the University of Virginia. Charlotte is a bundle of joy for the whole family, including grandma Linda and aunt Katherine Flaherty ‘05 who were on hand for the birth. Amanda Russo ’03 recently starred as “Hansel” in the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music production of Englebert Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

2004 10th Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

Estee Barbuto ’04 has moved to Washington, D.C., after a year in San Diego, California. She is one of 21 individuals at Booz Allen Hamilton selected to participate in a leadership development program to

Photo by IU Opera Theater

strengthen the general management consulting business (GMC) at the firm. In January, Estee completed her fourth La Vuelta Puerto Rico, where she cycled more than 375 miles in three days.

2005 George Raftis ’05 married Caitlin Holmes on November 16, 2013, at St. Paul’s Cathedral in Pittsburgh in front of all their friends and family, including a large group of fellow Sewickley Academy alumni.

2006 James Hilliard ’06 married Susannah St. Laurent on September 14, 2013, in Pittsburgh. Brittany Urick ‘06 obtained a Master of Public Policy from Oxford University and is now based in Nairobi, Kenya, working for the Clinton Health Access Initiative.

2009 Fifth Class Reunion October 10-11, 2014

Boo Urick ‘09 began his studies at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law in September 2013. Nikki Becich ’09 and Genny Luo ’09 met up in Pucallpa, Peru, in January 2014 to work with a project called Esperanza Verde for a little over a month in the Amazon. Nikki writes, “After we go there, we´re heading down the Amazon River from Iquitos, Peru, to Manaus, Brazil, to bird-watch and meet up with researchers in the Pantanal wetland region, which is really rich in wildlife!”




Amanda Russo ’03 stars as “Hansel” in Indiana University’s production of “Hansel and Gretel.” Caitlin and George Raftis ‘05 celebrate their wedding with lots of Sewickley Academy friends. Pictured here: Corey Diethorn ’04, Derek Chimner ’04, Dana Mathews ’04, Tommy Laughlin ’05, Josh Snyder ’05, Evan Stiegel ’05, Ed Stone ’05, Derrick Perkins ’05, Artie Woods ’05, Alec Shannon ’05, Jamie Porter ’05, Alex Mahfood ’05, Keith Stone ’05, Teddy Matwijec ’05, Richard Thornburgh ’06, Michael Raftis ’07, Alex Oltmanns ’07, Michael Jackson ’07, Michael Kalis ’07, Alisa Mathews ’07, Alaina Raftis ’09, Francis Zappala ’09, Kelly Fetterolf ’09.



Nikki Becich ’09 and Genny Luo ’09 work with a conservation project in the Amazon. Both women’s interest in the region was sparked during an Academy trip to Ecuador.


James Hilliard ‘06 and his bride, Susannah, at their September nuptials.


2010 David Bonomo ’10 and Ken Johnson ’11 attended the Duke vs. Davidson basketball game in November where Tom Droney ’10, now a captain of the Davidson Wildcats in his senior year, scored 16 points. Tom goes down in Davidson history as the first player to have started every game his freshman year.

been dubbed the “Sewickley Suite,” and the young alums are having a terrific experience in their first year of college.

2014 Soon-to-be alumni Alex Burke ’14, Megan Carpenter ’14, and Leslie Uptegraff ’14 ran the Color Run this fall in South Park.


2013 Hayden Moyer ’13, Rhet Happel ’13, and Evan Haines ’13 began their first year at Allegheny College (AC) this fall. The trio of Sewickley grads always intended to room together, however, the housing department at AC ran into a bit of a snag when they ran out of freshmen housing. Moyer, Happel, and Haines were eventually placed in a converted lounge that comes fully equipped with air-conditioning and a half kitchen! The space has



Susan (Ratcliffe ‘55) Sour drove through a Buffalo blizzard to see Davidson Wildcat Tom Droney ‘10 take on Niagara University. The three residents of the “Sewickley Suite” at Allegheny College, Hayden Moyer ’13, Rhet Happel ’13, and Evan Haines ’13. Alex Burke ’14, Megan Carpenter ’14, and Leslie Uptegraff ’14 participate in the Color Run in South Park.

True Colors clothing line. “Color is the first thing you notice when you walk into a store; it impacts how we feel. With this in mind, color is really important to fashion brands.” Maggie works with fabric mills and dyehouses to achieve dyes and colors chosen by Elie Tahari for a wide variety of fabrics and yarns each season. After Maggie reviews many “lab dips,” or small color swatches, and makes approvals, the mills will dye hundreds, sometimes thousands, of yards for the clothing line.

Maggie Dimmick ’08 takes color seriously. So seriously, in fact, that when she’s practicing her passion for textile and fashion design, she avoids using fabric from a store. “I love using textile techniques on fabrics that I dye myself,” says Maggie. “Otherwise, I feel like I’m stealing someone else’s color!”

Color isn’t the only thing that captivates Maggie. “My personal designs always have elements of hand-beading, hand-dyeing, embroidery, applique, or some kind of fabric manipulation.” As part of her freelance work, Maggie does costume design, including for former SA Theater Director Stacy Donovan’s stage company (The Improbable Stage Company), and has recently experimented with textile collage and artisanal textile techniques for small wall hangings and frames, as well as mini collages for greeting and note cards.

This love of color translates well to Maggie’s job as a colorist for Elie Tahari, a high fashion

Her favorite accomplishment to date is the senior collection, “Saguaro,” she created at Cor-

Maggie Dimmick ‘08 takes the stage after her “Saguaro” collection makes its debut.


nell University, where she graduated in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in apparel design. “The final collection was the embodiment of my personal design aesthetic and textile/construction capabilities. I employed all of my favorite textile techniques, including embroidery, beading, shibori (a form of Japanese tie dye), applique, pleating, and hand-dyed fabrics.” The collection boasted nine looks modeled at a runway show with nearly 2,000 people in attendance! While her passion for costume design led her to her current career in the fashion industry, she hopes that one day her freelance work will become her full-time profession. From the unique and stylish looks she creates, Maggie is well on her way to personally designing her future. See Maggie’s work at

In Memoriam

As of December 15, 2013

ALUMNI CAROLINE FREDERICKA HOLDSHIP ’31 Caroline Fredericka “Wag” Holdship ’31 passed away on June 24, 2013, at the age of 99. She attended Sewickley Academy and graduated from Miss Porter’s School. She joined the Frontier Nursing Service in Appalachian Kentucky as a courier and midwife assistant, and served for many years on the board. She also worked as a biology lab assistant at the University of Pittsburgh. She was the last surviving charter member of the Sewickley Hunt and was an avid sportswoman who skied into her 70s. She was unfailingly interested in other people and uncomplainingly cheerful. “Wag” or “Freddie” was predeceased by her two sisters, Katharine H. Jones and Margaret ’31, and by a nephew, Benjamin F. Jones IV ’46. She is survived by her nephews, Frederick Holdship Jones ’47, Peter Dalzell Jones ’53, and nine great-nieces and nephews. NANCY LOUISE (HERRON ’36) CHERRY Nancy Louise (Herron ’36) Cherry died of natural causes on June 9, 2013. “Pepper,” as she was known to many of her friends, attended Sewickley Academy, and graduated from the Ethel Walker School and Smith College. She enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served in the WAVES first as an ensign, then as a Lt. J.G. until the end of World War II. During that time, she met and married Thomas Crittenden Cherry Jr. After the war, they lived in Westbury, Long Island, and Darien, Connecticut, before settling at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. In Darien, she served on the education committee of the RTM (Representative Town Meeting), the high school building committee, the YMCA fund drive, and was a lifetime member of the League of Women Voters. She was a founding member of the Coastal Discovery Museum in Hilton Head. An avid traveler, she visited every continent and even Timbuktu. She was predeceased by her husband, Thomas C. Cherry Jr., and her brother, S. Davidson Herron Jr. ’40. She is survived by three sons and four grandchildren. EVELYN (FORCEY ’41) GOSKO

FRIENDS OF THE SCHOOL MARJORIE (BRAINERD) FLOYD Marjorie (Brainerd) Floyd passed away peacefully on July 1, 2013, at age 93. She taught preschool and kindergarten at Sewickley Academy and preschool at The Presbyterian Church, Sewickley. She is survived by three children, five grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

FAMILY OF ALUMNI RICHARD EDWARD DELGRANDE, M.D. Father of Maria ’13 and Andrea ’15 GEORGE MCCULLY LAUGHLIN GOULD Father of Andrew ’71, Karen (Gould ’72) Boyle, Isabel (Gould ’73) Hoversten, Megan (Gould ’74) Benedict, George “Josh” ’77, and Leila (Gould ’79) Oliver CHARLES R. VOLK Father of Christopher ’75, David ’78, Amy (Volk ’80) Tahan, Timothy ’83, William ’04, and Mary ’05 PAUL HUGO WEYRAUCH Father of Beth (Weyrauch ‘71) Butler, Susan (Weyrauch ‘72) Williams, and Nancy (Weyrauch ‘77) Mehlert ALMA “PETER” (WILSON) WHEELER


Mother of Sue (Wheeler ’55) Mason, Sara (Wheeler ’58) Forster, and Laurie (Wheeler ’59) Brown


Evelyn “Cissy” (Forcey ’41) Gosko passed away peacefully on October 24, 2013. She attended Sewickley Academy, Rosemary Hall, and the University of Minnesota. She worked as a volunteer Guardian Ad Litum in the juvenile court system, both in Minneapolis and in Key Largo. The well-being of children was always a driving force in Cissy’s life. In Winnipeg, she headed the Children’s Home Society, which housed, educated, and nurtured primarily local children. Her leadership roles in the Keys Children’s Foundation in the Upper Florida Keys helped move the organization from a single function program to one that supported more than 20 programs assisting children.

She was a voracious reader, avid bridge player, and loved traveling the world and connecting with other cultures. Her family was the single most important part of her life. She was predeceased by son Judd Gosko, and two brothers William Forcey ‘29 and Charles B. Forcey ’39. She is survived by her husband, George, two children, five grandchildren, her brother, Harry Leonard Forcey ’47, and her sister, Barbara (Forcey ’38) Frank.


315 Academy Avenue | Sewickley, PA 15143

State Champs! State Champs!

The varsity boys’ soccer team celebrates its state championship victory in November. This is the third time in school history the team has won a state championship.

Sewickley Speaking Winter 2014  

Sewickley Speaking is the alumni magazine for Sewickley Academy - a premier Pittsburgh private school enrolling students in pre-k through gr...

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