A “Butterfly” Takes Flight Golf: Breaking 100–90–80
Shining on Commencement Day
Alumni Weekend memories SUMMER
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Nourished by Our Memories
112th Commencement Remarks By George Boggs ’65, Grace Morris ’02, Peter Hafner ’02, William R. MacMullen ’78, and Bruce Trammell ’02 Page22
A “Butterfly” Takes Flight
Spring Season Highlights By Steve Palmer
From the Archives
Tara Lee ’93 as Madame Butterfly with Atlanta Ballet. See story page 16. PHOTO BY
So painfully shy at Taft that she was afraid to speak in class, Tara Lee ’93 has blossomed as one of the lead dancers of Atlanta Ballet By Kent Hannon
Breaking 100–90–80 26
The Taft Bulletin is published quarterly, in February, May, August, and November, by The Taft School, 110 Woodbury Road, Watertown, CT 06795-2100, and is distributed free of charge to alumni, parents, grandparents, and friends of the school.
Alumni Weekend Memories
Photography by Peter Finger
On the Cover
A guide to the scoring basics By Josh Zander ’86, Golf Digest
Annual Fund News
From the Editor
E-Mail Us Send your latest news, address change, birth announcement, or letter to the editor via e-mail. Our address is TaftBulletin@TaftSchool.org. We continue to accept your communiqués by such “lowtech” methods as the fax machine (860-945-7756), telephone (860-945-7777), or U.S. Mail (110 Woodbury Road, Watertown, CT 06795-2100). So let’s hear from you! Taft on the Web News? Stocks? Entertainment? Weather? Catch up with old friends or make new ones, get a job and more!—all at the new Taft Alumni Community online. Visit us at www.TaftAlumni.com. What happened at this afternoon's game?—Visit us at www.TaftSports.com for the latest Big Red coverage. For other campus news and events, including admissions information, visit our main site at www.TaftSchool.org with improved calendar features and Around the Pond stories.
Playing pro ball in Atlanta, new leader for the Board of Trustees, professor honored for life of teaching medicine, new alumni trustee elected, telling the story of a baseball nomad
Around the Pond
Potter gallery, Saturday morning cartoons, All-State musicians, live from Liverpool, ISP, uppermid honors, Poole and Kilbourne Fellows named
䉳 At left, the girls’ crew out for an early practice on Bantam Lake this spring. For more on their season, turn to page 15. Photo by Peter Finger
From the Editor When my son recently did a report for school on Utah and the completion of the transcontinental railroad, for which he read a book called East Meets West, I thought: That is what this issue of the Bulletin is about. From the links of San Francisco’s renowned Presidio Golf Course to the stage of Atlanta Ballet, Taft alumni are making their mark on this country, only they come together not in Utah but in Watertown, especially on Alumni Weekend. And Atlanta and San Francisco are two hot towns for young alumni in particular, especially this year with Darren Bragg ’87, a Georgia Tech grad, now playing for the Atlanta Braves (page 4) and Patrick Kerney ’95 continuing to play with the Falcons. One read through the class notes will tell you that alums are living all around the country and around the world, but increasingly in San Francisco! Josh Zander, a Class A PGA teaching professional, is one of over 300 alums living in the Bay Area. He is currently director of instruction at the Presidio Golf Course and shares his knowledge
Hang on, Mr. DePolo I just read the spring issue of the Bulletin announcing Mr. DePolo’s retirement. I feel so proud to have been his student, and therefore so sad to hear that he is leaving. Only Mr. DePolo could have convinced me that calculus is a wonderful thing to be engaged in first thing on a Monday morning. I have to admit, I don’t remember much about derivatives. I went on to major in English in college, and now I’m teaching written communication at Bombay University. There are times when I stand in the classroom, look at all these young faces in front of me (not that much younger than me), who expect me to enlighten them any second as I stumble on through my lecture, and remember the time one of our classmates, confused by a particular problem, stopped Mr. DePolo mid-derivation (or was it integral?) and said “Hang on!” Mr. DePolo’s body slumped against the 2
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
with the golfers among us in this issue. Like Darren, Josh is returning to his college turf, having played for the Stanford Golf Team and graduated as an Academic All American in 1990. Before turning his attention to teaching in 1994, Josh was a touring professional on the Asian, South American, and Golden State tours. He qualified and played in the 1992 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. As my husband Al ’80, our son Alex, and I are about to make a transcontinental journey of our own, heading to California for a year’s sabbatical leave (yes, we’re coming back), it is comforting to know we aren’t entirely leaving the Taft community behind; there are plenty of Tafties on the Left Coast after all. Please note the additional name on the masthead for this and coming issues. I would like to welcome Linda Beyus, who will create the next four issues of the Bulletin while I’m away. I trust you will share your amazing stories with her, as you have with me for the last fourteen years. Please, let her hear from you. —Julie Reiff
blackboard as he held on for dear life to the top of the blackboard and said, “I’m hanging on, Trev. Tell me when I can let go.” This is the same man who would walk into class every single morning, look at a portrait of Einstein that was up on the wall, and say “Morning, Al. Having a bad hair day?” I don’t know how he managed to make it funny every single time, but we were a captive audience forever. I may not have opened a math book since Taft; I may be writing stories in Mumbai, India, but somewhere, somehow, Mr. DePolo is with me, and I think of him often. It is a tragedy that future students at Taft will not get to benefit from his teaching. Then again ... it is a bigger tragedy that they won’t get to hang out with him. We just sat and laughed together. The learning happened on its own when Mr. DePolo was around. Like magic. —Shivani Tibrewala ’96 Via e-mail
Larry Bishop’s portrait of John Packard, M.D., in May 1992, when Dr. Packard retired as clinical professor of cardiology at the Univ. of Alabama School of Medicine and corporate VP for medical and educational research for Baptist Health System.
Painting Tafties Each issue of the Bulletin seems to be more eye-catching than the last! The cover of the spring 2002 issue featuring the vivacious gold medal hockey star and Taft alumna was striking, but so was the portrait of Winifred Taft on page 8. My first year at Taft was Mr. Taft’s last. I vaguely remember hearing that he had been married but do not remember seeing any pictures of his wife. The portrait is so beautifully painted that I wondered who the artist was. Then I read his name—Larry Bishop—a Birmingham artist who painted my portrait ten years ago! Larry told me that Winifred Taft is his favorite work, and that he had painted several other portraits of Taft notables—I think you were fortunate to have selected Larry, and I look forward to seeing his other portraits when I next visit the school. —John Packard ’37 Birmingham, Ala.
Cutting Remarks Usually when the Taft Bulletin arrives I set it aside for an unharried time when I can review the two to five lines submitted by the Class of ’71, and wonder what my anonymous classmates are up to. This time, for unknown reasons, I turned to the back page, and when I saw the name of Court Wold, whose father Jack was my classmate, I kept reading. He shouldn’t ever sell himself short; if there are “sharper knives in the drawer,” they haven’t cut me like his essay. I probably don’t agree with his politics (at some point I’d like to discuss Garret Hardins’ Tragedy of the Commons with him) but his clever reworking of PETA brought tears of laughter to my eyes, washing over the tears of a parent reliving Holly’s miraculous discovery and recovery. I wish Court luck with the carp fishing (really a smarter fish than those western trout in any event), his studies, those wayward cows, and all the adventures that life presents. —Biff Bermingham ’71 Via e-mail
Citizen Soldiers I can appreciate the sentiments expressed in the Bulletin about those who choose to serve our country through careers in the Armed Forces, but I would argue with the notion that it is these that are the strength of the military. I believe a look at our history will show that the strength of the military lies in the willingness
of ordinary persons to set aside periods of their lives to serve—the citizen soldier, if you will. The vast majority of our wartime forces were the draftee or the volunteer, not the professional soldier/sailor/airman. While the professionals may have been the core, they weren’t the ones who did what needed to be done. I say this as a person whose earliest memories are of the WWII years, a veteran whose service spanned the Berlin and Cuban Missile Crises, and the father of two Army officers. —Tommy Hickcox ’57 1st Bn/3rd Arty, 2nd Armored, Ft. Hood, Texas 1962–63 Via e-mail
Those Who Served Many thanks for another marvelous issue of the Taft Bulletin. I have been meaning to write for some time and congratulate you and whoever else helps you put together interesting and elegant presentations on a wide variety of subjects. I have been especially grateful for your articles on Tafties who served in our armed forces. I thought the piece on the young alumna who is commanding a destroyer was both fascinating and moving. I also appreciated the subsequent articles of those Tafties who have made careers in the armed forces most timely. As a former Naval aviator, who first applied to join Navy in my senior year at Taft, I have a profound respect for all those who serve their country in any capacity but particularly those in our various uniformed services. I also think that the present generation of Tafties might be surprised to learn how many of us did some sort of military or similar service. Many of them—like me—didn’t make the service a career but nonetheless were profoundly affected by our time in uniform. Some, like my classmate Jack Terrill, lost their lives. —Jay Greer ’50 Via e-mail
Support not Sensationalism The winter Bulletin reminded me of an interchange with my college advisor. I indi-
cated that I wanted to attend a college with a NROTC Unit, and he said “Tom, I think you can do better than that.” I hope that the feature on military service represents genuine support of service to our country and not just another blatant exploitation of post-9/11 sensationalism. In the 40-some years since I graduated, the only other Taft feature about the military was really about female progress, not military service. —Thomas W. Wright ’61 CDR USN (Ret.) Officer in Charge, PCF 89; Officer in Charge, PCF 44; Officer in Charge, SES 100B; Commanding Officer, USS Implicit (MSO 455); Acting Commanding Officer, USS Detroit (AOE 4); Combat Systems Manager, MCM and MSH Class; Program Manager, Sea Mines; Program Manager, MHC Class, Intermarine USA; Project Manager, New Construction, Palmer Johnson Via e-mail
The Greatest Generation As a graduate of the Class of ’42, my reactions were mixed when I read the following: “Alumni veterans of World War II, Korea, and Vietnam can feel honorably represented here.” I really think that some specific mention should be made about those who served in World War II. I mention this in full awareness that perhaps much of that information may not be available. My information is specific, although limited, because I was also “over there.” From the 15th Air Force in Italy I had limited correspondence with Bill Gilbert. I was told by his mother and sister after the war that Bill was an
continued on page 59 We welcome Letters to the Editor relating to the content of the magazine. Letters may be edited for length, clarity, and content, and are published at the editor’s discretion. Send correspondence to: Linda Beyus, Acting Editor • Taft Bulletin 110 Woodbury Road Watertown, CT 06795-2100 U.S.A. or to BeyusL@TaftSchool.org Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
Alumni S P OT L I G H T
In Brief Cards With a View The artwork of Megan Craig ’93 was featured on Connecticut Journal on Connecticut Public Television in April. Megan, a doctoral candidate in philosophy at the New School, was also in a residency program for artists on the 91st floor of the World Trade Center until September 11. Fortunately, she was only in the entrance that morning when she became aware of danger and fled. “I was one of eight painters,” said Megan, “who had a residency there that was meant to last until November 1. The [Connecticut Journal] show mentions these note cards I put together to help raise money for the September 11 Fund.” Each card has a different painting she made of the city from the 91st floor. Megan also teaches aesthetics at Parsons School of Design and organized a conference called “Thinking Through September 11th: New York Philosophers Respond.”
Rights to Bragg The Atlanta Braves picked up veteran outfielder Darren Bragg ’87 this spring. The Braves mark Darren’s seventh major league team. He’s played for all three northeastern teams: the Red Sox (three seasons), Yankees, Mets (twice), as well as for the Mariners, Cardinals, and Rockies. Originally from Wolcott, Conn., Darren has a .258 career average in 656 games. He signed a minor-league deal with the Braves organization at the end of spring training and was hitting .293 when he was promoted from Class AAA Richmond at the end of April. “He’s always been a tough out,” manager Bobby Cox told the Atlanta Journal Constitution. “He works the pitchers, doesn’t swing at balls. I like him. He can play center, right, or left. And he’s a great guy. Funny as hell.” Moving to the Braves, who are always hungry for another pennant, gets Darren that much closer to a World Series appearance. “I’m at the point now,” Darren said, “where I just want to win.” Rightfielder Darren Bragg ’87, with AAA Richmond, before he was called up to Atlanta at the end of April. © Dean Hoffmeyer/Richmond Times-Dispatch.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
Smythe ’42 Devoted Career to Improving Medical Education “Cheves was thrilled when we inhe added, “because—as in informed him of his selection,” said vestments and militar y Citation Committee chair ventures—there is a ratio of Charlie Yonkers ’58. “ ‘My goodrisk to gain, and an opportuness,’ he said, ‘what have I done nity without risk isn’t very for Taft, other than send children much of an opportunity.” and grandchildren there! I don’t Modest to a T, he said, deserve this!’ ” “In one context or another I Cheves Smythe ’42 rehave known (previous citation ceived degrees, cum laude, from recipients) Maynard Mack ’27, Yale University and Harvard Henry Taft ’43, Don McCullough Medical School, and served two ’42, the Cruikshanks, the years in the U.S. Navy. From Oddens, Bob Sweet ’40, Louis 1955 to the present, he has Laun ’38; I can’t believe I belong been an active clinician and in that company.” teacher. He has been dean of the His life’s work is precisely Medical College of South Carowhat the citation was intended lina and the founding dean of to celebrate. Created in 1960, the University of Texas Medithe Alumni Citation of Merit, cal School at Houston and the the school’s highest award, honAga Khan Medical College in ors members of the Taft Karachi, Pakistan. community whose lifework best While in Pakistan, from exemplifies the motto of the 1982–85 he recruited a faculty, The recipient of this year’s Alumni Citation of Merit, school, not to be ministered developed a curriculum, and Dr. Cheves Smythe ’42 has helped create two medical schools unto, but to minister. and helped to improve health education in Pakistan. launched a new reformist medi“Taft looms large in the cal school that incorporated Smythe family,” Cheves said at ideas from Pakistani, British, Ameri- cipient. For nine months out of the year the luncheon. “My grandfather and can, and Canadian medical education. Cheves continues a full menu of teach- Mr. Taft were classmates and friends He led the building of a contempo- ing and patient care in Houston. at Yale. That led to my older brother “I am convinced,” he said, “that going to Taft in 1936 and my seeing rary teaching hospital, a school of nursing, and a program in public health opportunity can be ubiquitous. Pasteur something of Mr. Taft when I was a education. He returned to Pakistan in said chance favors the prepared mind. boy. All I remember is a tall, friendly 1990 to chair the Department of Opportunity repeatedly presents itself to old gentleman with a nice smile. I am Medicine. He has published over 100 those who are open to it. The trick is to very grateful for the positive impact books and articles in the medical field. react open-mindedly when opportunity the school has had on my life, the lives He has also been honored with the does knock at the door and then select.” of our sons, and is having in shaping In evaluating opportunity, Cheves our grandchildren.” University of Texas Health Science Center’s outstanding leadership award considers three questions: Is it doable? Is In addition to Cheves, his older it on a sufficient scale? Does it matter— and the Department of Medicine’s brother, a cousin, three sons, a nephew, Brooks Award for outstanding teaching. not here and now or in the short term, and two grandchildren have attended the Last year, they created a Smythe Award but at projected maturity? school, with, he says, “ten more Smythes “This does not mean risk free,” in his honor and named him its first rein the offing.”
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
Will Miller ’74 Named Board Chairman “Will Miller has been one of the most respected board members for over 24 years,” said Head of School Willy MacMullen ’78 about Will’s appointment as chairman of the school’s Board of Trustees. “He perfectly symbolizes all that Taft stands for. He is brilliant and committed, of course, but he also has a love for the school that is simply remarkable. And a great part of the reason our campus is as beautiful as it is lies in the fact that Will, who has a keen and nuanced understanding of architecture, helped shape our decisions on the Odden Arena, the Lady Ivy Kwok Wu science building, and the Arts and Humanities building. Will continues the tradition of great board chairs.” Current chairman John Vogelstein ’52 stepped down this summer. Will, who joined the board in 1978, is chairman of Irwin Financial Corporation, a group of five major operating companies traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol IFC. Irwin Financial had net revenues in 2001 of $401 million. Prior to 1990, he was president of Irwin Management Company in Columbus, a family invest-
ment management firm which is not affiliated with Irwin Financial. A cum laude graduate of Yale, Will received his M.B.A. from Stanford University in 1981, graduating as an Arjay Miller Scholar. Other nonprofit boards on which he serves include National Building Museum in Washington, D.C.; Cummins Foundation; Central Indiana Corporate Partnership; Irwin-Sweeney-Miller Foundation; Irwin Financial Foundation; and The Heritage Fund of Bartholomew County (a community foundation). Will also serves on the Yale University Investment Committee. “Will Miller is an ideal successor to John Vogelstein,” said Lance Odden, headmaster emeritus, who worked closely with Will for many years. “His vision has already shaped the school’s destiny, as for nearly two decades Will presided over the long-range planning process that led to the transformation of the campus. As an
innovative and farsighted businessman, he brings the financial acumen necessary in these challenging times. As a humanist, he is imbued with the school’s traditions and will challenge Taft to continue to reach for excellence in every area.”
Alumni Elect Rosilyn Ford ’80 to Board of Trustees An executive neuroscience consultant with promotional responsibilities for the CNS product brands for GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals, Rosilyn graduated from Wesleyan University with a degree in biology and later earned her M.B.A. at Boston University. Rosilyn has also worked as a research technician at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. In 1987, she joined the Department of Pathology at the Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital in Boston, Mass., as a research assistant. In 1989, Rosilyn became a senior research
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
assistant, and later manager of a laboratory within the Department of Surgery at Deaconess. While there she was involved in a NASA research project and was co-author of several journal publications. While working full-time at Deaconess, Rosilyn earned her M.B.A. from Boston University. Rosilyn lives near Boston with her husband Luis Guevara and their dog Shadow. Elected for a four-year term, she joins 25 fellow alumni, four current parents, and two past parents who make up the school’s current Board of Trustees.
Birdie: Confessions of a Baseball Nomad By James Morrison ’43 TRIUMPH BOOKS, 2002. $19.95 Birdie Tebbetts was a fun-loving, taunting troublemaker squatting behind the explosive bats of the greatest stars of his time. He saw it all in a career that spanned most of the 20th century. An AllStar catcher and manager of the year, he suffered a near-fatal heart attack and had to start his career over again at 54, climbing his way back to the upper echelons of baseball and receiving two World Series rings for his efforts. Birdie is the story of a rare individual whose life mirrored the game he loved and reflected its passion, grace, and perseverance. Jim Morrison, his cousin and confidant of 60 years, brings Birdie to life in his own authentic and distinctive voice. Birdie, who died in 1999, left behind an eight-foot shelf of diaries as well as numerous tapes about his life and times in baseball. “He had played, managed, and had been a front office big shot,” writes Reggie Jackson in the foreword. “And now he was a scout. But more than that he was a teacher who respected the ballplayer…. You have to like a guy who’s done it all.” Morrison, a documentary filmmaker for the last 30 years and an adman for 15, is the author of several books including Treehouse and The Stuff Americans Are Made Of. He lives in Colorado Springs, Colo.
To Catch an Actor Actor Stephen Largay ’89 appeared this spring on NBC’s Third Watch in the role of a serial killer. He also appeared briefly in an episode of ER.
Fitting Tribute Jamie Witker ’94 and Anthony Horn ’79 have, coincidentally, both been working on a documentary for Discovery about two of the New York Fire Department’s elite rescue companies. As fate would have it, about half of the men they followed on the job were killed on September 11. “For the past few months we have worked at crafting a new documentary that is, of course,” said Jamie, “a tribute to them and their heroism. (It is believed that they made it to the fire floor of Tower 1.)” The producer is the nephew of Chief Ray Downey of the FDNY, who was also killed. Anthony is the executive producer, and Jamie is an editor. The program will air on The Learning Channel and overseas at dates and times yet to be determined.
So Why Summer School? John Merrow ’59, executive producer, host, and president of Learning Matters, wrote an essay on summer schools and retention that ran in the April 15 issue of USA Today. To read the full text, please visit www.pbs.org/merrow
Please join us for the dedication of the John L. Vogelstein '52 Dormitory on Saturday, September 28, at 10:30 a.m. Reception to follow on the field adjacent to Bingham Auditorium, CPT, and the Vogelstein Dormitory. Please call the Alumni Office at 800-959-8238 if you plan to attend.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
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pond Animated Visit Ro c k w e l l Vi s i t i n g Ar t i s t K i m Roberson, a designer for ABC’s Saturday morning cartoon Teacher’s Pet (which becomes a feature movie later this year), gave a highly entertaining Morning Meeting this spring. Before showing an episode of the cartoon, she explained how the show is put together and the varying skills that are required. “She was a great example,” said Susie Tarnowicz ’03, “of someone who really enjoys what she does. It was nice to hear her at meeting but particularly nice to chat with her in class and see her portfolios.” Roberson is a professional illustrator and animator living and working in Los Angeles. Her other Art teacher Loueta Chickadaunce shows off student artwork to visiting artist posts have included background Kim Roberson. PHOTO BY SAM DANGREMOND ’05/TAFT PAPYRUS cleanup artist for Disney’s Weekenders, prop designer for three seasons of Disney’s Pepper Ann, character and background designer for shows on Lifetime and Nickelodeon, and several years as a freelance illustrator. Before earning her B.F.A. from Parsons School of Design in New York, Roberson studied art with Loueta Chickadaunce for three years at Santa Catalina School in Monterey, Calif.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
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On the Right Track Taft sent nine teams to the 12th annual Boston University engineering design competition in June. Teams of two students designed “cars” powered by two AA batteries no larger than 12 inches in all dimensions. In the competition, two cars face each other at opposite ends of a 16-foot track that has a 6-inch square hole in the middle. The object is to deposit a hackeysack in the hole before the competitor and return to the start line in as close to 15 seconds without going over. The designs, said adviser and physics teacher Jim Mooney, “centered on getting to the hole quickly and building a delay mechanism into the car so that it would sit for about 9–10 seconds before returning.” Tien Hoang and Steven Ambadjes’s car received the highest preliminary score. Tucker Marrison and Emily Monahan also made it to the semifinals. Both cars performed well and were among the eight teams who made it to the finals, when a broken switch largely ended the day, despite the promise exhibited by both cars. “Their designs caught the interest of many of the contestants,” Mooney said, “and several people came by to take pictures of their cars to help in preparing for next year.”
Nine teams embark on their journey to Boston University for the annual engineering design competition with their vehicles. Front from left, Kit Pattamasaevi ’04, Simon Kim ’04, Tien Hoang ’03, Chris Kwok ’04, and Jason Lee ’03. Standing, Aya Michaels ’03, Emily Marano ’03, Tucker Serenbetz ’03, Pea Phadhana-Anake ’03, physics teacher Jim Mooney, Tucker Marrison ’04, Emily Monahan ’04, Yun Chiang ’04, Lauren Malaspina ’04, Steven Ambadjes ’03, and Sandi Shen ’04. Lydia Chang ’04, Supriya Balsekar ’04, and Michael Lee ’03 are not pictured.
Blood Brothers A visiting student cast from the Felsted School in England presented Blood Brothers in April, a play by Willy Russell (Educating Rita). The 25-member company was on an 11-day, three-stop tour that included performances at St. Paul’s School and Middlesex, as well as some sightseeing in New England and New York.
Hillary on History Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton and history teacher Rachael Ryan at a New York City fundraiser for Tom Strickland (father of Annie ’04), who is running for the US Senate as a Democrat from Colorado. Senator Clinton was reportedly impressed that Ryan was teaching American government and remarked on what an important job it is. Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
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New Faculty Alison Binkowski, Math Fellow Mark Bodnar, Director of Technology David Bonner, College Counselor Ellen Bonner, Dorm Head William Coyle, Assistant Business Manager Constantine Demetracopoulos, Science Fellow J. Michael Harney, Math Fellow Stephen Jackson, College Counselor/English Jonas Jeswald, Spanish Fellow Donald Padgett, Mathematics Julie Palombo, French Fellow Jason Tandon, English/Learning Center Christopher Torino, English
Teachers Honored Math teachers Steve and Susan McCabe received an Outstanding Educator Award from the University of Richmond. The McCabes were nominated by Liz Lawton ’01, who said that they “have always been a symbol of what it really means to be generous.”
Student Composer Senior Dan Teicher recently composed his first orchestral piece, which the student Chamber Ensemble performed in May. Dan has been studying music seriously for about five years, and took Advanced Placement Music Theory his uppermid year. “I was looking for the next step in my musical career,” Dan said, “and found that the next logical progression would be to write a sizable piece. I spent the first semester studying how to orchestrate the piece and about theme and variation, followed by an intense writing period.” “Dan worked very hard, and I believe his piece will reflect both the time and thought he put into the compositional process as well as how much he has evolved as a musician this year,” said Chamber director T.J. Thompson. “Although this is the first student work we have performed, I’m hoping to start a tradition.” Dan plans to major in music at Brown University.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
The Donald F. McCullough ’42 Scholarship In recognition of a generous bequest received from the estate of Don McCullough ’42, four full scholarships have been established to enable deserving students to attend Taft starting this fall. These McCullough Scholars, a select group of talented and motivated students, will perpetuate the legacy of a man who has done so much for this school. As a member of the Board of Trustees 1963–67 and 1975–99, chairman of the Development Committee 1980–99, and chairman of the Board 1990–99, Don was well described by Lance Odden at a farewell dinner in September 1999. “He has been a superb leader of the school, helping us to raise over $100 million for endowment, to build a magnificent campus, and to raise the standards of excellence throughout the school. The distinguished historian, James McGregor Burrus, identified two types of leaders—those who sustain and those who transform. As he has in everything he has worked with throughout his wonderful life, Don McCullough has led the way in transforming Taft. We are forever indebted to this great leader of Taft.” Head of School Willy MacMullen ’78 described Don this way: “Don McCullough was a great friend to Taft. He was larger than life, and his love of this place was evident in all he did for the school. We are privileged that we use his name here essentially every day, and I’m honored that Taft students in the future will carry on his legacy through the scholarship.” And so Don’s outstanding legacy at Taft will be alive and well as dedicated students with promise and enthusiasm will thrive at Taft as McCullough Scholars in the years to come.
Hotchkiss Day - Saturday, November 9 Please join us for lunch under the tent from 12:00–2:00 p.m. and help cheer on the Big Red for the final games of the season. For more information or to let us know that you wish to attend please call the Alumni Office at 800-959-8238.
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News Channel 8 reporter/meteorologist Ibby Carothers interviews A.P. biology students Annabelle Razack ’02, Ashay Shah ’02, and Manya Albertson ’02.
Making the News Laura Erickson’s Advanced Placement biology class was featured as part of News Channel 8’s “Making the Grade” series in May. The news crew was on campus for several hours interviewing and filming Taft students as they did a DNA experiment in the Lady Ivy Kwok Wu science center. The segment was broadcast live from Taft at noon that day, and again the following day during the evening news.
Senior Maiko Nakarai and uppermids Alex Britell and Glenton Davis participated in the Connecticut All State Music Festival in April. Each year more than 2,000 high school students compete to be one of fewer than 500 students selected to perform at this event in the chorus, orchestra, concert band, or jazz ensemble. The final concert was held at UConn’s Jorgensen Auditorium. Maiko and Alex performed the Academic Festival Overture by Johannes Brahms, Symphony No. 5 by Dmitri Shostakovich, and Adagio for Strings by Samuel Barber. “It went great!” said instrumental music teacher T.J. Thompson. “I think it was one of the most passionate student performances I’ve seen from an All State Orchestra.” Singers Emile Bogrand ’03 and Glenton Davis ’03 later performed at the annual Kannengeiser Scholarship Benefit Concert at the North Church in Woodbury in May. Both won $1,000 from the Connecticut Choral Society. These prestigious scholarship awards involved an intense singing competition with contestants coming from all over Connecticut.
Potter Gallery Events
Grandparents Welcomed Randi Lawlor ’04 with grandparents Bernie and Diana Lawlor, and Ron and Lucille LeBlanc on Grandparents’ Day in April. Nearly 250 family members attended. Alumni grandparents on campus that day included Marshall Clark ’40, Scott Pierce ’49, and Charles Wemyss ’45.
Coming up in the Mark W. Potter ’48 Gallery this fall are exhibits by Kate Jellinghaus ’89 and Kendall Ayoub ’92. Both women will spend time on campus as Rockwell Visiting Artists. The term will open in September with a repeat visit of a group of Tibetan monks from Drepung Gomang Monastic University. During their five-day visit they will construct a sand mandala in the gallery. An exhibit on the history of the school’s architecture is slated for the winter term, and artist Ralph Lee ’53 (“The Man Behind the Masks,” fall 2001) will mount an exhibit of his many theatrical masks in May.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
AROUND THE POND
Alumni Offspring 2002–03 Among the students roaming the campus this fall are 91 who have far-reaching ties to the school, some who’ve marched in parades with their moms on Alumni Day or watched their fathers challenge a varsity team in ice hockey. For others, Watertown was a place they’d heard of only in their grandfathers’ stories until they came to see it for themselves. Among them they boast the oldest living graduate for a great-grandfather and the first dual-alumni parents (both mom and dad are graduates of the school). Great Grandfathers Great-Grandfathers Elias C. Atkins* ’15 .................. Eliza A. Clark ’03, Spencer T. Clark ’05 Thomas W. Chrystie* ’21 ................................. Peter H. Wyman, Jr. ’05 Henry C. Robinson* ’20 ........................................... Reed E. Coston ’06 J. Stillman Rockefeller ’20 ............................... George S. McFadden ’03 Grandfathers Bernhard M. Auer ’35 .................... Tyler P. Auer ’03, Cody E. Auer ’05 Edward Madden Bigler ’40 . Paul G. Bigler III ’04, Marika K. Bigler ’06 G. Renfrew Brighton, Jr. ’43 ..................... Renfrew M. Brighton, Jr. ’05, Whitney Z. Brighton ’06 John B. S. Campbell* ’34 ................................ Susannah M. Walden ’06 Robert A. Campbell ’34 ................................... Randolph H. Lamere ’04 Page Chapman* ’29 .............................................. James H. Wheeler ’05 Ronald H. Chase ’54 ........................................... Hillary N. Simpson ’06 Thomas L. Chrystie ’51 .................................... Peter H. Wyman, Jr. ’05 Marshall Clark ’40 .................................................. Mary F. Graham ’04 Charles A. Coit* ’35 ............. Charles M. Coit ’04, Caroline M. Coit ’05 David W. Fenton ’48 .................................... Elizabeth W. Shepherd ’05 William J.H. Fischer, Jr.* ’33 ................................... Jane B. Spencer ’03 Edward F. Herrlinger II ’46 ................................ Daniel M. Hillman ’06 Herbert S. Ide, Jr.* ’21 ................................................ Thomas S. Ide ’05 Robert G. Lee* ’41 .............................................. Emily C. Monahan ’04 Thomas F. Moore, Jr. ’43 .............................. Marguerite L. Smythe ’03, Samuel M. Smythe ’05 Scott Pierce ’49 ........................................................... Pierce M. Brix ’04 William A. Pistell ’44 ........................................... Johanna M. Pistell ’04 John S. Potter, Jr. ’49 ........................................ Michael S. Bruno III ’06 Edward Van V. Sands, Sr.* ’14 .................................. Diana P. Sands ’06 James C. Sargent, Sr. ’35 ............................... Stephen D. Sargent, Jr. ’03 William Shields, Jr.* ’29 ................................... Katherine M. Squire ’04 Spyros S. Skouras ’41 ........................................ Spyros S. Skouras III ’05 Cheves McC. Smythe ’42 ............................... Marguerite L. Smythe ’03, Samuel M. Smythe ’05 Gordon B. Tweedy* ’24 ............................... Elisabeth T. McMorris ’05, Gordon B. McMorris ’04 Harry W. Walker II ’40 ...................................... Webster C. Walker ’05 John S. Wold ’34 ............................................... Cecily R. Longfield ’03, Claire W. Longfield ’06 Parents George B. Adams, Jr. ’74 .................................. George B. Adams III ’06 Eric D. Albert ’77 .................................................. Lindsay C. Albert ’06 Bruce E. Alspach ’71 ................................................ John P. Alspach ’03 John W. Biedermann ’77 .................................. John A. Biedermann ’03 Paul G. Bigler II ’74 ............ Paul G. Bigler III ’04, Marika K. Bigler ’06 Renfrew M. Brighton ’74 .......................... Renfrew M. Brighton, Jr. ’05, Whitney Z. Brighton ’06 Peter S. Britell ’59 .............................................. Alexander C. Britell ’03 John S. Brittain, Jr. ’77 ......................................... John S. Brittain V ’06 Fred X. Brownstein, Jr. ’64 ............................ Vanessa R. Brownstein ’06 Gordon S. Calder, Jr. ’65 ................................. Gordon S. Calder III ’03 June Pratt Clark ’72 ................. Eliza A. Clark ’03, Spencer T. Clark ’05 Robert T. Clark ’72 .................. Eliza A. Clark ’03, Spencer T. Clark ’05
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
David M. Coit ’65 ................................................... Charles M. Coit ’04 Carlotta Shields Dandridge ’74 ......................... Katherine M. Squire ’04 Rafe de la Gueronniere ’70 .................... Grace R. de la Gueronniere ’04 Paul M. Ehrlich ’62 ........................................... Benjamin A. Ehrlich ’06 Frederick J. Fessenden III ’66 ........................ Nicholas E. Fessenden ’03 Jeffrey Foote ’73 ....................................................... Andrew J. Foote ’05 Peter A. Frew ’75 .................................................... Amanda L. Frew ’05 Alexis D. Gahagan ’74 ...................................... William D. Gahagan ’06 Michael D. Gambone* ’78 ................................ David M. Gambone ’03, Ashley I. Gambone ’05, Kyle S. Gambone ’06 Richard T. Ginman ’66................................... Alexander T. Ginman ’03 Gordon P. Guthrie, Jr. ’62 ............................. Gordon P. Guthrie III ’04 Eugene R. Hack, Jr. ’65 ......................................... Rowena W. Hack ’03 Laura Weyher Hall ’78 ............................................ Caroline C. Hall ’06 Elizabeth Christie Hibbs ’78 .................................... Carter E. Hibbs ’05 Katharine Herrlinger Hillman ’76 ...................... Daniel M. Hillman ’06 Douglas G. Johnson ’66 ............................... Douglas G. Johnson, Jr. ’04 H. Craig Kinney ’68 .............................................. Jane I. E. Kinney ’06 Andrew J. Klemmer ’75 ........................................... Arden Klemmer ’05 Daniel K. F. Lam ’75 ............................................ Arthur H. Y. Lam ’03 Brian C. Lincoln ’74 ................................................ Gray B. Lincoln ’05 Nicholas D. Lorusso, Jr.* ’72 ............................. Michael R. LoRusso ’03 Sharon Gogan McLaughlin ’73 ........................ Laura R. McLaughlin ’06 Laird A. Mooney ’73 ............................................... Clare E. Mooney ’05 Frederick F. Nagle ’62............................................ Kierstin A. Nagle ’04 Gregory S. Oneglia ’65 ...................................... Matthew F. Oneglia ’03 Cassandra Chia-Wei Pan ’77 ....................................... Nicholas Chu ’05 Neil Peterson ’61 ...................................................... Guy E. Peterson ’03 Jean Strumolo Piacenza ’75 .................................. Lucia M. Piacenza ’04, Thomas F. Piacenza ’06 Langdon C. Quin III ’66 ................................. Langdon C. Quin IV ’05 Peggy D. Rambach ’76 ................................. Madeleine E. R. Dubus ’05 Peter B. Rose ’74 ........................................................... Amy B. Rose ’04 Edward Van V. Sands ’65 .......................................... Diana P. Sands ’06 Roy A. Schonbrun ’68.................................... Zachary S. Schonbrun ’05 Lynn Creviston Shiverick ’76 ............................ William L. Shiverick ’04 Spyros S. Skouras, Jr. ’72 .................................. Spyros S. Skouras III ’05 John L. Smith* ’66 .................................................... Emily T. Smith ’06 James L. Smythe ’70 ...................................... Marguerite L. Smythe ’03, Samuel M. Smythe ’05 John P. Snyder III ’65 ............................................. Torie T. Snyder ’04, Mackenzie M. Snyder ’05 Clayton B. Spencer ’56 ............................................. Jane B. Spencer ’03 Tom R. Strumolo ’70 ........................................ Andrew C. Strumolo ’06 Paul A. Sylvester ’74 ......................................... Shannon K. Sylvester ’03 Bridget Taylor ’77 ..................................................... Reed E. Coston ’06 C. Dean Tseretopoulos ’72 ...................... Adrianna S. Tseretopoulos ’03 Karen Kolpa Tyson ’76 ............................................... Julia B. Tyson ’04 Elizabeth Brown Van Sant ’75 .......................... William R. Van Sant ’04 Christopher C. Wardell ’69 ........................... Cooper T. A. Wardell ’03, Clayton C. H. Wardell ’06 Michael S. C. Wu ’73 ................................................. Mercer T. Wu ’05 *deceased
ANNUAL FUND REPORT
Volunteers Raise $2.64 Million Class Agent Annual Fund Awards* Snyder Award—largest amount contributed to the Annual Fund by a reunion class Class of 1952: $126,500 Class Agent: Harry Hyde 2nd: 1962: $40,092 Fred Nagle and Bryan Remer 3rd: 1992: $28,885 Andrew Solomon Chairman of the Board Award—highest percent participation from a class less than 50 years out Class of 1960: 77% Class Agent: George Hampton for the 7th year in a row 2nd: 1958: 61% Charlie Yonkers 3rd: 1953: 57% Geo Stephenson McCabe Award—largest amount contributed by a non-reunion class Class of 1974: $53,125 Class Agent: Brian Lincoln 2nd: 1965: $45,800 George Boggs 3rd: 1981: $40,966 Dave Schoenrock Class of 1920 Award—greatest increase in dollars from a non-reunion class Class of 1981: $15,871 Class Agent: Dave Schoenrock 2nd: 1978: $14,645 John Kerney 3rd: 1995: $12,236 Dan Oneglia and Tony Pasquariello The Romano Award—greatest increase in percentage support from a non-reunion class less than 50 years out Class of 1958: 49% Class Agent: Charlie Yonkers 2nd: 1954: 31% Rocky Fawcett 3rd: 1953: 27% Geo Stephenson Young Alumni Dollars Award—largest amount contributed from class less than 10 years out Class of 1995: $15,806 Class Agents: Dan Oneglia and Tony Pasquariello 2nd: 1993: $5,020 Margaret Fitzgerald 3rd: 1997: $3,721 Dan Trombly Young Alumni Participation Award—highest participation from class less than 10 years out Class of 2001: 53% Class Agents: Ella Foshay-Rothfeld and Will Strumolo 2nd: 1998: 26% Devin Weisleder 3rd: 1993: 25% Margaret Fitzgerald
This was an unusual year for the Annual Fund. Due to the tragedy surrounding September 11, the first solicitation was mailed a month later than planned. Although the long-range plans and calendar for the year had to be shifted, the outcome has been a positive one, with $2.64 million raised for the school, only slightly less than last year. Of that total, 38 percent of alumni raised $1.27 million. A special note of thanks to all our donors and volunteers for supporting the Annual Fund and the school in this difficult year.
Annual Fund Awards: Congratulations to the agents and classes who came out on top in the annual competition! Harry Hyde and the 50th Reunion Class of ’52 raised the most money for the school—$336,500 in annual and capital gifts—and for the seventh year in a row, George Hampton and the Class of ’60 finished the year with the highest participation—77 percent! Congratulations to Annual Fund Chair Dyllan McGee ’89 and her husband Mark Weigel on the birth of their first child, Max, on Mother’s Day. Max will be a member of the Class of 2020!
Save the Date: The Chairman of the Board Reception will be held on Tuesday, October 15, at the New York Yacht Club in New York City. The reception honors all volunteers and major donors of the school. Invitations are mailed in September.
Changes in the Alumni Office: After four years as director of the Annual Fund, Olivia Tuttle is moving to a different position and is now the director of alumni planning. Charged with searching out the future leaders of the school from the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s, Olivia will be planning alumni events around the country and on campus, encouraging alumni to get involved and to see firsthand the changes that have occurred in the last 20 years. She previously worked on the Campaign for Taft and was director of alumni relations. She is the mother of Spencer ’98 and Beecher ’00. Jessica Oneglia Travelstead ’88 has joined the Alumni Office as the new Annual Fund director. Jessica is married to classmate Jason Travelstead, and is the daughter of Greg ’65, and sister of T.J. ’93, Dan ’95, Christina ’98, and Matt ’03. She has an M.B.A. from the University of Denver and has worked for Nike, People’s Bank, and J. Lindberg in marketing, sales, and financial analysis. She and Jason live in Litchfield and are the proud parents of Eliza, born on June 25, 2002. Thanks to all for another successful year. Go Big Red!
New Annual Fund director Jessica Oneglia Travelstead ’88 with Olivia Tuttle P’98,’00
* Awards determined by funds raised as of May 18, 2002. Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
ANNUAL FUND REPORT
2001-2002 Parents’ Committee: Marilen & Rod Tilt Leslie & Samuel Acquaviva Dale & Dick Ahearn Laura & Bob Allen Rosanne & Steve Anderson Sallie & Scott Barnes Sandra W. Bisset Ann & Alan Blanchard Sarah & Yancey Brame Howard & Barbara Cherry Gail & Daniel Ciaburri Peg & John Claghorn Susan & Bill CooganJohn D. Deardourff Marguerite & Tom Detmer Emily & Steven Eisen Julie & Michael Freeman Louise & Dan Gallagher Barbara & Henry Gooss Katy & Tiger Graham Frances & James Hull Susan & Joseph Idy Lisa P. Ireland Stella & Harry Jones Sally & Michael Karnasiewicz Kathryn S. Kehoe Kim & David Kennedy Chip Kruger Anne & Reid Leggett Robin & James Little Leslie & Angus Littlejohn Pascale & Jim Luse Bridget & John Macaskill Mary-Beth & James McCormack Jane Perry & Barclay McFadden K.T. & Alan McFarland Lisa & Phil McGoohan Clare & Howard McMorris Anne & John McNulty Virginia L. Mortara Ann & William Nitze Wendy & Fred Parkin Rosemarie & Scott Reardon Anne & Peter Richardson Ann & James Rickards Joyce & Michael Schiavone Lindsay & Edgar Scott Jean & Stuart Serenbetz Drs. Michael & Margi Sermer Lanie & Gary Sinderbrand Charlotte & Richard Smith Jane & Tom Steele Beth & Tom Strickland Catharine & Jeffrey Sturgess Patti & Barry Tarnowicz Margaret & Joseph Toce Holly & Gary Townsend Ann & Tom Vinci Janice & Thomas Waring Jane & Bill Waters B.J. & Ed Whiting
Marilen and Rod Tilt, chairmen of the 2001–02 Parents’ Fund, have announced that a record-breaking $1,058,091 was raised from 95 percent of Taft’s current parent body, making this year’s fund one of historic significance for Taft and for parent giving nationwide. Marilen and Rod Tilt with son Roddy ’02
This unprecedented achievement could not have happened without the outstanding leadership of the Tilts, a dedicated Parents’ Committee, and the hundreds of parents who have given so much, in so many ways, to this great school. Marilen and Rod Tilt have handed over the reins to Leslie and Angus Littlejohn, current members of the Parents’ Committee and parents of Angus ’03 and Lindsay ’05.
New Parents’ Fund Chairmen Leslie and Angus Littlejohn P’03,’05
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
sport Spring Highlights by Steve Palmer BOYS’ LACROSSE 12–2 The phenomenal two-and-a-half-year undefeated streak came to an end for boys’ lacrosse this season, but not before the team pulled out some great victories, including a fierce 4–3 overtime decision over a great Salisbury team. Perhaps the best all-around game came against a strong Avon team, a resounding 12–8 win for Taft. Again this year, the defense was tenacious, with seniors Jaime Sifers and Peter Hafner named to First Team Western New England All-Stars, and goalie Dan Glazer making the Second Team. Also, seniors Andrew Bisset and Jamie White were Founders League All-Stars, and White led the team in goals (26) and assists (25). Fellow seniors Roddie Tilt, John Mackaskill, and Will Brame have also played important roles in Taft’s threeyear record of 40–2, along with backup goalie Andrew Belcher, who won the Odden Lacrosse Award this year.
GIRLS’ TENNIS 11–1 New England Champions, Kent Tournament Champions The girls’ tennis team rolled to its third straight Founders League title this spring with convincing wins over Loomis, Hotchkiss, and Choate. The highlight of the regular season was an inspiring 7–6 win over last year’s New England Champion, Milton Academy, and the girls avenged their only loss, to Deerfield, by defeating them at the Kent Tournament and then again at the New England Tournament. The talented lineup included upper middlers Brie Bidart, who lost only one match at #4 singles; Hannah Baker, who has lost one match in three years at Taft; Katie Franklin, who also only had one loss at #2 singles this year; and Katherine O’Herron, Taft’s #1 singles and the Kent Tournament individual champion. The doubles
team of Tory Ilyinsky and Maggie Smythe played a major roll during the season and in winning the Kent Tournament, and Ilyinsky teamed up with Baker to win the #1 doubles draw at the New Englands. Eleven of the twelve players return to defend their titles next year.
Upper middler Tory Ilyinsky teamed up with classmate Hannah Baker, right, to win the #1 doubles draw at the New Englands this spring. Eleven of the twelve players return to defend their New England Championship title next year. PETER FINGER
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
GIRLS’ CREW 6–1 The strongest girls’ crew team in school history brought home plenty of awards and victories this spring, including a #2 ranking among Connecticut private schools. The team placed all four boats in the grand finals for the Founders Regatta (a large New England competition, not the Founders League) finishing 4th overall. Taft’s first boat of Kathleen Bernard, Alexa Mattfeld, Annie Owen, and Jennifer Sifers established a new school and course record on Bantam Lake. Though this boat is the finest the school has ever had, the season record for each boat was impressive (1st boat 7–1, 2nd boat 7–1, 3rd boat 8–0, 4th boat 7–1). Only Miss Porter’s School, the New England champ this year, was able to stay ahead of Taft on the lakes and rivers of Connecticut, but the girls closed in on Porter’s with each race, coming within 1.2 seconds in their final meeting.
GIRLS’ TRACK 10–1 Founders League Champions In the past, the league title has been determined by dual meet record, but this year for the first time a championship meet was held, and Taft took the inaugural Founders League Meet with their strength in the weight events and hurdles. During the season, new school records were set by New England Champion Bridget Baudinet in the shot put (38’7”), by middler Kate McCabe in the 100meter hurdles (16.33), and in the pole vault by Kirsten Pfeiffer (8’8”). Upper middler Marisa Ryan also broke her own school record in the 3,000-meter run, posting a time of 10:40, fifteen seconds faster than any other New England prep runner this year. Seniors Baudinet, Kara McCabe, and Tiffany Bryan dominated the shot put, discus, and javelin respectively all spring to lead Taft to one of its finest track seasons ever. 16
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
First boat rowers Kathleen Bernard, Alexa Mattfeld, Annie Owen, and Jennifer Sifers established a new school and course record on Bantam Lake this spring. PETER FREW ’75
BOYS’ TRACK 10–3 The boys’ track team enjoyed a great turnaround season this spring, including an exciting 73–72 victory over Berkshire and a 4th place finish at New Englands. The team was very strong in the sprints, with the 4 x 100meter relay team of Harry Jones ’02, Matt McIver ’03, Kofi Ofori-Ansah ’03, and Nick Dabbo ’02 running the second fastest time in school history (44.0). New middler Camden Bucsko placed in both the shot put (6th) and the discus (2nd) at the New England
meet and really bolstered Taft’s performance in the weights. Next year, the team will be led by talented cocaptains Matt McIver and Kofi Ofori-Ansah. McIver ran the fastet time in the 400-meter for Connecticut prep schools this year and placed 2nd at the New England meet, and Ofori-Ansah shattered the school record in the triple jump by more than four feet when he won the New England title in 46’4”.
Scoreboard Varsity Baseball 10–8 Varsity Softball 7–7 Girls’ Varsity Lacrosse 12–3 Boys’ Varsity Tennis 7–9 Boys’ Crew 4–5 Varsity Golf 13–5–1
Harry Jones ’02 makes the handoff to Matt McIver ’03 in the 4 x 100-meter relay. BOB FALCETTI
Nourished by Our Memories 112th Commencement Remarks
n a perfect afternoon in May, family, friends, and faculty gathered to honor and bid farewell to members of the Class of ’02, the 30th graduating class to include women. Faculty honored students who made outstanding contributions to the school—their accomplishments as shining as the day—and five speakers shared their thoughts with the graduates. Excerpts from their remarks follow here.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY STEVE VALENTI
Winston Churchill delivered a speech at Harrow on a visit to the school during the height of the Battle of Britain in 1941 in which he told students, “Never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense.” Many of you may have heard that message in different forms throughout your Taft career, whether it be from a coach on the athletic field urging you to keep up your intensity after falling behind, or from a teacher of a difficult course urging you to keep working to master material that seemed impossible. One of my mes䉱 Tyler Jennings and classmates inspect their newly received diplomas. 䉳 Science Department chair Laura Erickson awards Kyle Dolan the Alvin I. Reiff Biology Prize. Kyle, salutatorian with Elena Sorokin, also received the Spanish Prize, Heminway Merriman Award, and Bourne history medal. Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
Commencement sages to you is that you should remember those words for the rest of your life. You will face many challenges after Taft—learning a difficult language, mastering a major course of study in college, looking for a meaningful job, seeking to end poverty or ignorance in various parts of the world, overcoming difficulties in your personal life, or reaching any other goal you have set for yourself. There will
A current parent, former faculty member, trustee, and class agent, George Boggs ’65 was the perfect choice for a Commencement speaker.
Senior Sera Reycraft with her parents Seraphim and Tom Reycraft
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
be times when you will be discouraged or when the goal seems impossible to obtain. But you must always remember never to give up the struggle. Do not give in to adversity. Keep fighting and pushing to reach your goal, for you can achieve more than you think you can. Although that lesson is often applied in reference to physical activity, it applies in any endeavor. As a lawyer, I have had to work longer than I thought possible to find an answer to a client’s problem that seemed to have no solution or to meet a crucial deadline, and I have had to work through seemingly impossible negotiations to reach agreements that the parties thought could not be obtained. I never gave up. Recently I was at a luncheon with Professor Benny Morris, a well-known history professor at Ben-Gurion University in Israel. A liberal by Israeli standards—a proponent of peace through the recognition of a Palestinian state—Professor Morris spoke about the history of the struggle between the Israelis and the Palestinians and the cur-
Head monitor and 1908 Award recipient Bruce Trammell places the class stone.
rent situation. Although optimistic in the past, he is now very pessimistic about the prospects for peace because he believes true peace may no longer be achievable, and even if, against all odds, a peace agreement is reached, it will not last. He believes the Israelis and Palestinians will always be at war. At the conclusion of his talk I told him I was most troubled by his current pessimism; I told him that I sincerely believed that there must be a solution to this problem and that it must be found. His reply was even more surprising. He said that my response was typically American. We always
Bruce Trammell ’02 with his parents Bruce and Deborah Trammell and sisters Kelsey, Candace, Lauren, and Taylor
believed there was a solution to every problem and that we kept working at it until we found it. In short, we never gave up. But, he said, we Americans must learn that some problems just have no solutions. Well, I may be naive, but I refuse to accept that. We must never give up seeking the solution to such a problem; we will find it some day. During your Taft career, you have made many dear and close friends. You all have spent this last week pledging to keep in touch, but the truth is that it will be difficult to do so without a lot of effort. You will make new friends and be preoccupied with your future career and family, but do not lose touch. Make the extra effort; your old friends are often your best friends. —George Boggs ’65, Commencement Speaker One of Hemingway’s characters in The Sun Also Rises says, “Isn’t it pretty to think so.” I look back on my four years here and think about whether Taft was a pretty experience. If that were true, I would not have grown
Volunteer Council adviser Baba Frew bestows upon Norah Garry and Jenny Zhang (not pictured) the Walker Non Ut Sibi Prize.
Class speaker Peter Hafner
into the mature, sophisticated young woman I am today … well young at least. I do not look back on my Taft experience as a wonderful ride with a hefty ticket price, because at no time in my four years has my inspiration come from any source other than within. I have sometimes despaired over the seemingly countless differences among my peers here, but rejoiced to learn that we shared similar fears and aspirations. This place has love, this place has humanity—that human touch that is vital in securing a soul. A soul. In William Faulkner’s Nobel prize acceptance speech he spoke of man being immortal because he “has a soul, a spirit capable of compassion and sacrifice, and endurance.” And I think we can
Aurelian Award winner Kara McCabe also received the Marion Hole Makepeace Award.
all agree that Taft is about endurance. Tafties have endured and prevailed for 112 years, women here for 30. Every day we have been challenged. Never has there been the comfort of hiding or running away from a problem. The pressure to perform has always been present, and we have met it. Taft may be the most wonderful balance of tough love. Here we are forced to look within ourselves for strength, and as we move on, keep in mind that we may not know our futures, but we do know ourselves. —Grace Morris ’02, Class Speaker When I arrived at Taft on my first day as a new junior, I initially was overwhelmed. I had been at my old school for nine years, and adjusting to the new academic, athletic, and social atmosphere was as tough for me as for a freshman entering high school for the first time. I showed little confidence that I would be able to shine in such a talented pool of peers, but through the friendliness
Former Hanoi Amsterdam students Ha Tran ’01 and Khiem Do Ba ’00 congratulate Khanh Do Ba ’02, Khiem’s cousin.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
Commencement and caring of my classmates and some initiative on my part, I began not only to feel comfortable but also confident as I gained friendship and loyalty from the members of this class. It is not just that there is such a wide variety of talented individuals, but what is more amazing is the way the class embraces and supports each others’ talents as different as they may be. We learned from hearing others share their experiences and thoughts with us. Lessons were also discovered by observing qualities in our classmates. Through the support and care that we have had for each other, each one of us has been able to make our own mark. I leave here not only with feelings of accomplishment and feelings of gratitude for all those who have helped me, I leave with a sense of pride and respect for my classmates who have made these two years so memorable. —Peter Hafner ’02, Class Speaker I’d like to share a story that my grandmother used to tell me, about an old man
Anne Belforti, Kathleen Bernard (adorned for the day), and Andrew Bisset
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
and a little boy. The little boy lived down in a village and the old man lived up on a hill. Now the old man was very wise and the villagers would often go up the hill to ask the old wise man questions. Whatever the old man said was always right and for this reason, the villagers greatly appreciated his advice. However, the little boy was tired of the old man always being right, so he decided to try and trick him. The little boy says to himself, “I’m going to find a little bird and hold it in my hand. Then I’ll ask the old man, Is the bird dead or alive? If he says the bird is dead, then I’ll open my hand and let it go. If he says the bird is alive, then I’ll crush it in my hand. Either way, the old man will be wrong.” So the boy runs off to find a bird’s nest, takes a little bird in his hand, and runs up the hill. When he reaches the old man, he quickly asks, “Old man, what do I have in my hand?” And the old man answers, “You have a bird in your hand.”
Head of School Willy MacMullen ’78 congratulates valedictorian Maiko Nakarai.
So then the boy asks him, “Is this bird dead or is it alive?” The little boy thinks he has tricked the old man, but then the old man answers, “Son, that bird’s future is in your hand.” Like that little boy, our future is in our hands. It is the individual decisions that we will make that will determine how successful we are in the future. And there are no wise people who can just give us all the answers. So continue to look to those wise people in your life for advice and guidance, but remember that your future is in your hands. —Bruce Trammell ’02, Head monitor
Sara Beasley receives the Abramowitz Award for teaching excellence.
In William Wordsworth’s most beautiful poem, as he looked out on Tintern Abbey and reflected as a young man on the past five years of his life, he wrote:
In hours of weariness, sensations sweet, Felt in the blood, and felt along the heart; And passing even into my purer mind With tranquil restoration….
That time is past, And all its aching joys are now no more, And all its dizzy raptures.
One day you too will be in a lonely room, or crowded by the din of a city, or feel intense weariness, and into your eye will appear a memory of your days here, and instantly you will be restored and tranquil. You will see a long brick hallway and a busy throng of students and teachers; you will see the sun dipping over Walnut Hill and the shadows lengthen as practices end on an October evening; you will see a teacher at the board, an easel, and a desk; you will see your class filing under Centennial arch behind the bagpipes, families closing in a wake behind, and then into the open air of the field where your life as a graduate begins. You will see all this and be made whole. —William R. MacMullen ’78 Head of School
This is, of course, a poet at the height of his craft, feeling intensely the loss of the best time of his life—a time of rapture and joy so poignant and powerful that it aches. But his description is one we all know: it is a chronicling of the moment we realize we have left one time in our life for another. Every parent knows it; you know it now just as you did when your son first rode a bike or your daughter first stepped on the bus alone. It is what all of us feel at this moment of great divide—you graduates leaving this place, we faculty contemplating a school without you, you parents seeing your child step into adulthood. Of course we feel loss.
Class speaker Grace Morris
But Wordsworth’s poem is not finally about loss: It is about what we have gained in having the imaginative power to revisit the past and to be nourished by it. He writes: These beauteous forms, Through a long absence have not been to me As is a landscape to a blind man’s eye: But oft, in lonely rooms, and ’mid the din Of towns and cities, I have owed to them,
Senior Angrette McCloskey and retiring faculty member Anne Romano graduate together.
Blair Boggs ’02 with her father, commencement speaker George Boggs ’65, mother Mimi, brother Trenholm, and grandmothers Pam von Thelen and Laura Marvel
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
A “Butterfly” T
he house lights have dimmed at Atlanta’s Fox Theatre, and as the curtain rises Cio-Cio, the geisha known as “Madame Butterfly,” appears at the center of the grand stage, dressed in a gauzy white kimono with a long train that stretches both left and right all the way to the wings of the 4,600-seat theater. Illuminated by a single beam of light, the image of this beautiful waif of a girl destined for tragedy is so indelibly rendered that, weeks later, patrons who attended this Sunday matinee performance can close their eyes and still see little Cio-Cio heralding the opening scene of one of the great operatic and ballet story lines of all time. As the Atlanta Ballet orchestra begins Puccini’s lush musical score, cymbals crash and Cio-Cio is lifted into the dark recesses of the stage by giant butterfly wings, emerging again moments later in a fog-shrouded seascape for her marriage scene with the handsome but adulterous Lieutenant Pinkerton of the United States Navy. As the artistic magic continues over the next 90 minutes—including an astonishingly athletic and romantic pas de deux that concludes act one—it is obvious that the dancer playing Madame Butterfly is capable of almost any physical flight of fancy, but even more adept at breaking the audience’s heart because of the way she inhabits the role of this tragic heroine.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
If this is not how Taft alumni remember Tara Lee ’93—assuming they remember her at all—Tara isn’t surprised. “I was a very shy girl when I took up dancing at the age of 6 . . . . I think that’s why my mother wanted me to start in the first place,” says Tara, who grew up in Watertown. “And I was very shy at Taft. My teachers were always saying, ‘Tara, won’t you please contribute more in class?’ But as much as dance helped me overcome my shyness, I was still a nervous wreck if I had to say something in front of more than three people. I remember wanting to make a point in world history class one day, but I just couldn’t do it.” Shyness runs in the Lee family. “Tara was just like me,” says her mother, Betty, a Watertown voice
teacher whose pupils include students from Taft. “I was so shy as a girl that when I finished performing, you had to push my head down to get me to take a bow.” Tara’s parents (her father is a psychiatrist) were born in Manila of Chinese descent but didn’t meet until each had moved to New York City. They relocated to Watertown largely because of Taft and the educational opportunities it offered Tara and her brother Kelvin ’91. “Taft was a good place for me, and I came out of my shell a little bit the older I got,” says Tara. “But I doubt that many people there remember me—and hardly anyone knew I was a dancer.” Which leads to a trivia question: Where could Taft teachers and students have seen this Joffrey Ballet student and future Atlanta Ballet star dance on campus? Answer: Vespers. “I wasn’t involved in many extracurricular activities because of all the private dance lessons I took,” says Tara. “But I was a member of the Dance Club, and we performed some modern stuff at Vespers a couple of times a year. I don’t know if anyone could tell I would become a professional dancer, but they could probably tell how intense I was about dance.” It was Donna Bonasera of the Connecticut Dance Theatre who first noticed that young Tara had special talents
By Kent Hannon
So painfully shy at Taft that she was afraid to speak in class, Tara Lee ’93 has blossomed as one of the lead dancers of Atlanta Ballet
and needed to start coming to dance class more than once a week. That training and Tara’s appetite for hard work eventually led to a full scholarship at the Joffrey School in New York. When Tara graduated from Taft, her teacher at the Joffrey was aghast to hear she was thinking of going to Harvard or Yale—with the idea of becoming a doctor. “Her teacher said, ‘What a waste! You should continue dancing!’ ” Tara’s mother recalls. “We didn’t know what to do.” Thinking Tara could combine college and dance, her mother took her to visit Butler University in Indianapolis—the alma mater of her future
Tara is the first to admit that hers is not the stereotypical ballerina body type. She relies on what her fellow dancers say is incredible flexibility, coupled with her innate ability to inject human emotion into every movement she makes on stage. PHOTO BY KEIKO QUEST
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
COURTESY OF BETTY LEE
Butterfly partner Jim Stein. Butler offered Tara a dance scholarship, and Indiana University was even more impressed. “After seeing Tara’s audition tape,” her mother recalls, “the head of the dance department said, ‘It would be so nice to have you here, but I’d rather see you go to New York. If you have any trouble there, I’ll help you.’ ” And with that, the die was cast. Tara made a bargain with her parents: Give me one semester to make it as a dancer in New York. If I can’t, I’ll quit and go to college. And make it she did, spending two years with Joffrey II. Fast forward to 1999, and the new Tara Lee—“Nobody would call me shy anymore!” she declares—is being dispatched to London by Atlanta Ballet’s artistic director John McFall to audition, cast, and teach choreography to eight English dancers who are needed for Atlanta Ballet’s London production of Peter Pan. “I surprised myself . . . . I was confident from the first day,” says Tara, whose paycheck was doubled in accordance with her ballet mistress duties. “Tara did a terrific job in London—and it’s a good thing because I had no time to fix the choreography once I got there,” says McFall, who was preoccupied with transforming the Royal Festival Hall into a theater suitable for ballet. The stor y of how Tara ended up at Atlanta Ballet, the oldest continuously operating ballet company in America, is a curious one. “Ordinarily, a dancer who wants to be hired by a ballet company has to make the first move—you have to go to that company and audition,” says Tara. “But, in my case, Tara Lee ’93 as Madame Butterfly with John McFall came to
“I was a very shy girl when I took up danc-
ing at the age of 6,” says Tara Lee. “I think
that’s why my mother
wanted me to start in
the first place.”
Atlanta Ballet 24
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
New York and ended up watching a class I was taking at the Joffrey. He saw me dance, and in 90 minutes my whole life changed.” Tara is the first to admit that hers is not the stereotypical ballerina body type that artistic directors look for if they’re casting a classic ballet like Swan Lake. She’s only 5’4” and, in her estimation, technique is not her strong point. She relies on what her fellow dancers say is incredible flexibility, coupled with her innate ability to inject human emotion into every movement she makes on stage. “Ballet class is not performance mode—which is what I do best,” says Tara, “so I couldn’t believe John McFall picked me out of a class and offered me a contract with Atlanta Ballet!” Ah, but there was method in McFall’s madness. For one thing, he was a neophyte at Atlanta Ballet just like Tara. A former dancer for the San Francisco Ballet, he was
being brought in to replace artistic director Bobby Barnett, who was retiring after 32 years. McFall needed to take the company in a different direction to reinvigorate ticket sales, and his impact was immediate and dramatic. Writing in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, reviewer Wendell Brock has credited McFall with refashioning Atlanta Ballet’s “dusty, Balanchine-heavy repertoire” into “a showcase for vigorous contemporary choreography.” And for that, he needed dancers like Tara Lee. “I wasn’t counting on finding anyone that day at the Joffrey,” McFall recalls, “but Tara’s aura certainly got my attention.” Until Butterfly, Tara’s biggest role with Atlanta Ballet was the lead (Mina) in Michael Pink’s Dracula. She had featured roles in Stanton Welch’s world premiere of A Dance in the Garden of Mirth, Diane Coburn-Bruning’s Berceuse, and Fernand Nault’s Carmina Burana. But she had never carried a ballet, as she did with Butterfly this spring. It is her showcase performance, and the end-of-act-one pas de deux her signature moment in dance. Think of pairs skating in the Olympics—with all the synchronicity of movement, the speed, the throws, the spins across the ice (or stage, in the case of Butterfly)—and you have some idea of how breathtaking Stanton Welch’s choreography was as performed by Tara and the statuesque Jim Stein. “It was like ice skating!” says Betty Lee, who flew to Atlanta to see her daughter’s big moment. “Only they weren’t wearing skates. At one point, I thought he was going to throw her . . .” “To the moon?” asks an interviewer. “Yes!” With a videotape of an Australian company’s performance of Butterfly to tell them where they were headed, Tara and Jim learned the pas de deux in three days—but spent several weeks mastering the intricate movements and building up their stamina.
“It’s probably the most demanding number Tara or I have ever done, but we welcomed the challenge,” says Stein. “When it came time for the show, we had to rely on muscle memory. But Tara is so easy to partner with. She’s light as a feather, which made the lifts easier. And she’s such an incredible actress that it’s easy to stay in character.” Staying in character is the easy part of the Butterfly pas de deux. Watching it unfold on stage, a patron in the fifth row scribbled the following notes in his Playbill: “Astonishingly beautiful . . . obliterates all the special effects in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon . . . a 50-minute act flew by in what seemed like 20!” Embellished by Puccini’s music, the pas de deux is also unblushingly erotic with Cio-Cio and Pinkerton actually kissing at several junctures and preparing to consummate their love as the scene ends. For someone as shy as Tara once was, the role could have made her feel very uncomfortable. But Tara and Jim say that being close friends and having stable personal relationships away from dance helped them get through the romantic elements of Butterfly with relative ease.
“When my wife heard who I was dancing with in the pas de deux,” Jim recalls, “she said, ‘Thank God, it’s Tara!’” “I have a steady boyfriend,” says Tara, “and when we were watching a videotape of the Australian ballet he said, ‘Oh, no, you have to kiss him?’ I think he was mostly kidding, but I said, ‘Are you okay with that?’ And he said, ‘Tara, don’t worry about it. I’ll be fine.’” Inspired by his performance in Butterfly, Jim Stein recently left Atlanta Ballet for what he hopes will be greener pastures at the Austin (Texas) Ballet. And Tara, just back from a vacation in Peru, is likewise reassessing where her post-Butterfly career is headed as she turns 27. She would like a shot at more lead roles, and more opportunities to try her hand at choreography. Not surprisingly, John McFall would like to hang onto her. “Tara is a very talented choreographer,” he says, “but she still has a number of good years ahead of her as a dancer.” “Atlanta Ballet is like a family,” says Tara, who has just finished her seventh season with the company. “There’s not much turnover here and we’re a pretty tight group—which is not the case at all ballet companies.” Speaking of family, when Tara’s mother came to the Fox Theatre to see her in Butterfly she found herself sitting next to a member of Atlanta Ballet’s board of directors. When he said something about Tara, even the very private Betty Lee couldn’t resist bragging a wee bit. “That’s my daughter!” she said. “Is she a guest soloist?” asked the board member, who couldn’t remember seeing Tara dance before. “No, she’s been with Atlanta Ballet for seven years,” said Betty. “Well,” said the board member, “she’s phenomenal.” Kent Hannon lives in Athens, Ga., where he is the editor of Georgia Magazine.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
EDITED BY MATTHEW RUDY
A monthly guide to the scoring basics
BY JOSH ZANDER ’86 Golf Digest Schools Instructor Practicing is critical to getting better, but don’t lose sight of the fact that hitting shots out on the course is the way you finally judge your game. That’s why I try to tie most of my practice drills and techniques to situations that I (or my students) actually face in a real round. Try shots when you practice, then don’t be afraid to use them when you play. You’ll make some mistakes, but over time, you’ll be a better player.
ILLUSTRATIONS BY JIM LUFT/ PHOTOGRAPHY BY JIM MORIARTY
Keep your swing on track Many beginners hear that a good swing comes from the inside. Mistakenly, they take the club back to the inside, starting a chain reaction that results in an over-the-top downswing. To help take the club back on the target line, place one range ball about a foot behind the ball you’re hitting. On the same line, six inches toward you, place another ball. Take the club back over the first ball, then swing through over the second.
100 The fundamentals Breaking
So many shots are missed before you swing. Get set up for success by improving your posture, grip and alignment. You don’t need Tiger Woods’ talent to make those changes, and if you can get into a better preswing position, you’ll have a much better chance of producing a good swing.
Once you cross the ‘decision line,’ focus The most important part of my preshot routine comes before I even step up to the ball. From behind, as in the photo above, I visualize and feel what I need to do, then make a decision about how I’m going to do it—what club, what kind of swing. Once I cross the “decision line,” I don’t worry about club selection or swing mechanics. I step in, make one waggle, look at my target, then fire away.
Aim with your brain Play to your predominant ball flight. If you slice, tee it up on the right side of the tee box and aim down the left side of the fairway. Even a slight fade will still be in the short grass.
Accentuate the positive
Never say to yourself, “Don’t hit it right,” or “Don’t hit it left.” Your mind catches on “right” or “left,” and guess where the ball goes? Focus on a positive goal before you swing.
Don’t be intimidated by rough, water or out-ofbounds. They help you define the right place to hit your ball. Pick a spot between them and let it fly.
Bow your left wrist with this anti-scoop drill One of the biggest mistakes I see comes from students’ trying to help the ball into the air. They cup the left wrist at impact in a scooping move. The result is usually a thin or fat shot. With a plastic water bottle that has a squirt top, get into your impact position and spray some water. If you’re scooping your left wrist, you’ll shoot water in front of the ball. Get in good impact position, with the left wrist bowed (right), and you’ll spray water right down on the ball. The bowed left wrist helps you hit the ball first, then the turf. The loft on the club and spin on the ball will get it airborne.
90 Building precision Breaking
If you’re a bogey golfer, you probably average one really good shot per hole—a drive in the fairway, an approach onto the green, a good chip or a good putt. Now you want to develop more precision. Someone who shoots in the 80s keeps it in play and is much better around the green.
Let the lie determine your stance on greenside shots The basic rule for chipping is, the worse your lie, the farther back in your stance you need to play the ball and the more loft you have to use. For each of the shots shown above, I’ve got the same distance to the flag. But for the shot on the
left, my ball and club are tangled in deep grass. I’m using my sand wedge, and I’m playing the ball well behind my back foot, so I can bring the club down on the ball without having to drag it through a lot of grass. I need the sole of the sand wedge to help me slide
through the grass and the loft to get it up. My lie is perfect for the shot on the right. I can chip with a 7-iron, playing the ball nearer my front heel. The ball should hop over the fringe and roll like a putt when it lands on the green.
80 Gaining control Breaking
You have to be able to play your tee ball to break 80. You can be in light rough, but you can’t be chipping out, taking penalty strokes or re-teeing. Learn how to manage your game and keep your emotions under control. Also work on some specialty shots like those described here.
Too much wrist cock
Take the wrists out of the lob shot Most people use too much wrist cock (inset) to hit the lob shot. You don’t need much. Too much wrist action makes it hard to control your distance and gives you more chances to lay sod. Instead, make the swing an arm-and-body motion. Maintain the loft on the club and take a bigger swing, with just a little wrist cock. It’s easier to control the big muscles, and they’ll help you hit these shots more consistently.
REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION FROM GOLF DIGEST®, APRIL 2001. COPYRIGHT © 2002 THE GOLF DIGEST COMPANIES, WHICH IS A SUBSIDIARY OF ADVANCE MAGAZINE PUBLISHERS, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. GOLF DIGEST IS A REGISTERED TRADEMARK OF THE GOLF DIGEST COMPANIES, WHICH IS A SUBSIDIARY OF ADVANCE MAGAZINE PUBLISHERS, INC.
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Alumni Weekend 2002
Cold Day, Warm Hearts Some Alumni Day traditions change over the years: the old boys’ challenge of the varsity nine in Mr. Taft’s day has more recently been replaced by an alumni lacrosse game. A formal dinner where men in black tuxedos listen to long speeches has evolved into outdoor cocktail parties and family events where toddlers twirl on the dance floor while their mommies and daddies catch up with old friends. But in the fourteen reunion weekends I have enjoyed, there has always been a parade . . . until this year. We’ve had cold weather, and we’ve seen downpours, but never a combination so dampening on the morning of the parade. So people slept in a little later, arrived a little more slowly, but soon the halls were filling with alums inspecting old class photos and ISP exhibits in the gallery. Still more came in time to hear Head of School Willy MacMullen ’78 and a panel of student leaders talk about the school today. And by the time the pipers piped their last tune in the McCullough Field House, lunch tables were filled and old friends reunited once again. There, we cheered to hear of the successful work of Annual Fund volunteers, and we rejoiced in honoring Cheves Smythe ’42 and his dedication to medical education. And our hearts warmed as we paid tribute to retiring faculty members Anne and Jerry Romano and Jerry DePolo. Athletic games may have been canceled that afternoon, but Tafties returned to celebrate friendship and connections. In the grand scheme of things, what’s a Kip Cheney, Jo Tragakiss, John Wallace, Davies and Gayle Tainter, Bev and little foul weather? Bill Hoglund helps the Class of ’52 win the alumni golf trophy with their —Julie Reiff winning net score. The Class of ’57 came in with the best gross tally.
Bud Heussler, Sam Stewart, Alan Marshall, and John Denby at a luncheon on Friday for the Class of ’52.
Davies Tainter ’52
TAFT ALUMNI WEEKEND
Seniors Grace Morris, Bruce Trammell, Peter Hafner, along with Kathleen Bernard and Andrew Belcher, talk about leadership at the school and answered questions from alumni about the school today during the Saturday morning panel.
Bill Hatfield ’32 returns for his 70th Reunion.
Terry Colby ’52 listens to Head of School Willy MacMullen ’78 and an assembled panel of student leaders on Saturday morning.
Willy MacMullen greets 1942 classmates David Piel and John Logan at the Old Guard Dinner.
Citation of Merit recipient Cheves Smythe ’42 and his wife Polly, son Daniel, Pam MacMullen, son Jamie ’70, grandchildren Maggie ’03 and Sam ’05, and Head of School Willy MacMullen ’78
Longtime family friends, it was only fitting that Jerry DePolo and the Romanos should “graduate” together. From left, Beth D. ’92, Joyce R. ’92, Sarah D. ’94, Jerry DePolo, and Anne and Jerry Romano.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
TAFT ALUMNI WEEKEND
Chaplain Michael Spencer greets Headmaster emeritus Lance Odden and wife Patsy after the Service of Remembrance on Friday.
Rain may have canceled the parade but it failed to dampen the spirits of alumni who gathered at the Saturday luncheon.
Hydrox a cappella group performs for the Class of â€™72 reunion dinner.
Members of the Alumni Office give Jerry Romano a farewell serenade.
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
Collegium Musicum and Chamber Ensemble perform for the memorial service at Christ Church on the Green.
The student Jazz Band lures dancers to the floor at the Old Guard Dinner at the MacMullensâ€™ home.
Bob Murdock â€™47
Willy MacMullen congratulates 50th Reunion volunteers Alan Marshall, Harry Hyde, and Reid Williamson, who raised more than $336,500 for the school this year.
Alumni Weekend 2002
1997 classmates Kate Harding, Joe McKenna, Tavi Fields, and Andrew Kandel return to campus for their 5th Reunion.
From the Archives In the spring issue we ran another photograph that turned out to be from the 1940s. Here are your replies to our query for more information.
Sullivan’s Baseball Nine I believe the coach is one of my favorite masters, William E. Sullivan. The skinny fellow in the cap is James Carroll; next comes Mike Tenney followed by Eldredge “Woolly” Bermingham (all Class of ’43). The year is tough but I put it at 1941. Really enjoy your old photo quizzes. —Everitt Clark ’43 La Jolla, Calif. Bill Sullivan, coach and master, Livingston Carroll ’37 (third from left) with a 1938 club team, either Alpha, Beta, or Gamma. —Peter E. Guernsey ’40 New York, N.Y. On page 28 (of the spring issue) there is an old photo that had to be taken in the spring of 1941. I’m sure of two people in it: from the left, the third person is a Carroll. I believe there were three brothers by that name at the school during the ’40s, and Pat was the oldest, but that is not him in your picture. The one I’m most sure of is, again from left, the sixth person: Frank E. Parkhurst from Kingston, Pa. He was a good friend of mine as we were from the same town. He died about ten years ago. The coach looks like Bill Sullivan,
and English teacher, except that he wasn’t much of an athlete. I could give you much more trivia about those years. For example, I was the first veteran after WWII to come back to school, and take my senior year. I’m sure I’m the only person who was elected captain of the football team who never played in a game as captain, and whose team never lost a game. Obviously I was in the army, and although I was proud of my team for not losing, it proved that I wasn’t much needed that particular fall (1943). —Joseph Pool ’44 Sea Island, Ga. I think this was in 1943. The master is William Sullivan, and as the players are wearing red, blue, and gray shirts—Alpha, Beta and Gamma, it was a made-up team. Second from left is Jim Carroll ’43, fourth I think is Eldredge Bermingham ’43, sixth—the catcher—is me, Ben Coe, and seventh is Warren Stanton ’44. —Ben Coe ’45 Via e-mail
First Waiting Game We “more mature” persons are always grabbed by an excellent photo from olden times. A long silent bell clangs! I refer to the 1952 whitecoated waiters with loaded trays (Winter 2002). Historians may want to know that our Class of ’36 pioneered in this field. We returned to the school the fall of 1935 to find that most of the maids had been discharged and that henceforth waiting on table and taking care of our own rooms were a new part of the curriculum. Reality has struck! Those 1952 waiters in your picture look composed and confident. In the fall of 1935 some of us were a little uneasy as 350 pairs of eyes watched us breaking new ground. In my own case, the hardest challenge was that mammoth soup tureen filled to the brim to be delivered down that endless aisle, minus
sloppage, and placed before the master at my assigned table. As for our new housekeeping responsibilities, I think of the 30 beds in the old gym. There, dear Mrs. Andrew McIntosh, the dean’s wife and a squad of faculty volunteer wives did their best to instruct undergraduates in the proper way to make a bed. To this day every time I execute a hospital corner I think of the warm, smiling Mrs. Mac and send my thanks. —Curt Buttenheim ’36 Sarasota, Fla. Ed. note: The white-coated waiters, from 1942 as it turned out, are identified on page 3 of the spring issue, which was mailed shortly after this letter was received.
I especially enjoyed the spring issue, which includes more face time for the Class of ’43. The rag-tag baseball players in the 1941 photo are, from left, Jim Emison ’43, Jim Carroll ’43, me, Woolly Bermingham ’43, and Frank Parkhurst ’42, with coach Bill Sullivan over-dressed on the extreme left. Can’t identify the other players. —Mike Tenney ’43 Plymouth, Mass.
Letters continued “ace” flying P-51s with the 8th A.F. He did not make it back. Charles Elder did not make it back either. He served as a B-17 pilot in the 8th A.F. They were both stationed in England. Near the end of the war in Europe, I visited Lambie Walker, who had served on a combat crew in the 15th A.F. He had completed his 25 missions and was on his way home. I am not sure yet why he laughed when I reported to him that I had completed 24 missions. I assume it was a nervous response. Each of us in our own way, who served in WWII, may choose to deal with that experience in different ways. I choose to put it 36
Taft Bulletin Summer 2002
almost, but not completely, out of my mind. I mention this because I do not wish to be classified as one who seeks to glorify the war or his own experiences. Many of us who were freshmen at Yale in 1942–43 were of an age when we could choose the branch of service to be included in. The Air Force seemed very glamorous to many of us at that time. I write these notes with the expectation that they will serve as a brief explanation and not in any way as a criticism of the fine work that was involved in the alumni military issue. —A. H. Kelsey ’42 Seattle, Wash.
I was so glad to see so many of our Taft men in uniform, having spent three and a half years at naval air facilities in Alaska and Ream Field in California during WWII. —Nelson Howard ’25, Lt. Cmdr., Ret. Santa Barbara, Calif.
Corrections Our apologies to John Simms ’56 who was mistakenly assigned to the Class of ’55 on page 4 of the last issue, and to Frank McGowan ’38, whose father should have been identified as the foreman of the Oakville Pinshop.
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