The Pingry Review - Fall 2020

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Pingry Anywhere The School’s First-Ever Flexible Learning Model

Dr. Bon Ku ’91 Advocates for Creative Health Care Young Alumni in the Armed Forces Remembering John Hanly

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Contents 20

Pingry Anywhere

This school year is all about adaptation, most visible with Pingry’s flexible learning model and safety protocols that were introduced in September. With them, the School can pivot between in-person and at-home learning. How did Pingry pull this off?

FALL 2020 | VOL. 77 | NO. 1


Creative Care

Textbooks are not everything— medical personnel are faced with challenges that they have not encountered in medical school or anywhere else. In response, emergency medicine physician Dr. Bon Ku ’91 advocates for design thinking.


Serving After Pingry

A number of young alumni have made the choice to serve in the military. Meet five of them, and read their unique stories. Unifying them all is their connection to Pingry and the impact the School had—in one way or another—on their decision to serve.

Departments 2 From the Head of School 3 One Pingry 4 Pingry Favorites 6 Commencement 8 Off to College 10 Faculty Awards and Chairs 11 New Trustees, Faculty, and Staff 17 Faculty and Staff Farewells

18 View from SH/BR 40 Athletics 44 On the Arts 49 Pingry in Your Neighborhood 50 Class Notes 58 In Memoriam 63 A Visit to the Archives 64 A Final Look

The Pingry Review is The Pingry School’s official magazine. Contact the editor with comments and story ideas: 908-647-5555, ext. 1296 The Pingry School 131 Martinsville Road Basking Ridge, NJ 07920 EDITOR Greg Waxberg ’96 Communications Writer EDITORIAL STAFF Peter Blasevick Archivist

Allison C. Brunhouse ’00, P ’31 Director of Institutional Advancement Andrea Dawson Senior Writer Jane Hoffman ’94, P ‘26, ‘27, ‘28 Director of Annual Giving and Community Relations Edward Lisovicz Advancement Writer Holland Sunyak ’02 Associate Director of Advancement DESIGN AND LAYOUT Aldrich Design PHOTOGRAPHY Camille Bonds Bruce Morrison ’64 John O’Boyle Maggie Yurachek ON THE BACK COVER Surprise! On World Teachers’ Day (October 5), faculty and staff were delighted by students’ and parents’ colorful chalk drawings on the sidewalks of both campuses.

From the Head of School


this issue of The Pingry Review, we are pleased to share how Pingry has pivoted to deliver on our promise of academic excellence through the creation of Pingry Anywhere, a best-in-class education and learner-centered experience through a flexible model. While COVID19 presents unprecedented challenges, we rallied together as a community to figure out how we can continue to fulfill our mission in innovative ways, leveraging the talents and expertise of our dynamic faculty and staff, who have stepped up in countless ways to help us remain steadfast in our school motto: “Greatest respect is due students.� What the faculty and staff have collectively implemented is truly remarkable and demonstrates our tireless commitment to strive for excellence in all that we do. The redesign of our campuses, thanks to the skills and talents of our Facilities and Technology Departments, coupled with intensive professional development for our teachers, has enabled us to provide an unparalleled learning experience for our students. One of the key questions that has driven our progress is how we can ensure that every student is able to thrive in a diverse and inclusive community. In these pages, you will read about our redoubled commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Through the late spring and the summer, we engaged in several conversations with students, faculty, staff, families, and alumni to better understand how Black students have experienced Pingry. We recognize that we have much work to do as a community to strengthen a sense of belonging for each student at Pingry. Our DEI team, spearheaded by Mr. Gilberto Olvera, our new Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, has jumped into action to examine the ways in which we must design for equitable experiences for all of our students. In partnership with the Board DEI Task Force, the newly constituted Anti-Racism Task Force, and the student-led Pingry Allyship Collective, Mr. Olvera has mobilized our community with a sense of urgency to ensure our commitment to help each student thrive at Pingry.


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We have appreciated and valued hearing from alumni and need your voices to help us continue to fortify the student experience at Pingry. You will have a chance to read about the positive impact our alumni are having in the healthcare field during COVID-19. Not surprisingly, we see the enduring impact of the Pingry mission in action. I hope that you enjoy reading about our vibrant community in a time of uncertainty and that you will be as inspired as I am by the dedication of our faculty and staff, and the ingenuity of our alumni. Sincerely, Matt Levinson

One Pingry Priority: Be An Antiracist School In the midst of the country’s movement against racial injustice, most recently sparked by the senseless murder of George Floyd, members of the Pingry community created the @blackatpingry Instagram account where current and former students share appalling, inexcusable, painful experiences. These incidents reveal a broken school culture of institutionalized racism and microaggressions and have led to a new focus on accountability on the part of administrators, faculty, and staff, as well as other aspects of School culture that must change. While some diversity and inclusion initiatives were already being discussed last school year, Pingry has now made it a priority to become more than simply “not racist”—to become an antiracist institution. The School has taken steps to make its priority a reality, including: The Administrative Team selected How to Be an Antiracist, by National Book Award-winning author Ibram X. Kendi, to be the Faculty and Staff Autumn Book Read prior to a discussion in November.

> Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Gilberto Olvera P ’29 was hired in February and joined Pingry this summer as a member of the School’s Administrative Team, ensuring that DEI is prioritized in all aspects of School life to create “real and long-lasting change.” > DEI Department staffing has expanded to include Assistant Directors in the Lower, Middle, and Upper Schools as well as Athletics.

> An Antiracism Task Force has been created and charged with examining all aspects of life at Pingry. The group includes administrators, students, faculty, staff, alumni, trustees, and parents. > Speaking and Listening Forums have given groups in the school community— students, faculty and staff, alumni—an outlet to share their concerns, frustrations, experiences, and questions.

A forum was also held for students, faculty, and staff to process their reactions upon hearing the news that no charges would be filed against the police officers who murdered Breonna Taylor. > The curriculum, professional growth opportunities, admissions, and hiring and retention processes are being reevaluated in phases.

The Pingry Review will cover DEI in more detail in the Winter issue.


How to Achieve Diversity in Leadership Lower School Director Dr. Thu-Nga Morris, who also joined Pingry this past summer, co-wrote an article for the Fall 2020 issue of Independent School magazine (published by NAIS, the National Association of Independent Schools), titled “Sponsorship: Diversifying the Pipeline of Emerging Leaders.” It highlights key findings from research she conducted—under the mentorship of Dr. Howard Stevenson—for her doctorate in Educational Leadership at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. In the article, which examines the challenges of expanding the racial and gender diversity of heads of schools, Dr. Morris and

Dr. Stevenson advocate for career sponsorship of women and people of color. “Unlike mentoring, which assumes a supportive role and is more akin to counseling,” they write, “effective sponsorship enhances the professional skill set, credibility, and visibility of an employee, and it must lead to the subsequent promotion of an employee.” Dr. Morris and Dr. Stevenson further write, “. . . white sponsors, even more so than people of color, must take active steps to regularly challenge their biases against people of color and exercise their influence to promote more people of color to headships.”

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Pingry Favorites Students Teach Virtual Summer Courses In partnership with Big Blue Summer Academics, Alesia Paliwoda ’21 was the first Pingry student to offer not one, but two virtual courses of her own design this past summer: Introduction to Architecture and Introduction to Engineering. In the former, she asked her students to “dimension” their homes, build a model, and draw additional views (top, front, and side). Similarly, fellow rising seniors Claire Keller ’21, Caeley Feeney ’21, and Elisabeth Korn ’21 offered rising K-Grade 5 students a Summer Reading Enrichment program.

Alesia Paliwoda ’21 teaching her virtual summer courses. at right: Sketches by Valentyn Kurylko ’25 for Introduction to Architecture.

Ring the Bell Throughout the

48 hours of Ring the Bell:


Pingry’s Annual Celebration of Giving, held in honor of Dr. Pingry’s birthday, the community united in support of the School’s mission. More than 625

community members participated,

$1.2 million in new gifts and pledges for the 2021 raising over

Pingry Fund—a recordsetting level of support!


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The PSPA (Pingry School Parents’ Association) hosted a safe, fun community event in October: a drive-in movie weekend, which included screenings of Despicable Me and Black Panther.

Climb Every Mountain... The Middle School tackled its first strength and conditioning challenge of the year in September—a race to climb all 29,000 feet of Mount Everest, with athletics teams and activity groups earning “feet” based on a different exercise each day (burpees, sit-ups, push-ups, jumping jacks). Students completed the challenge in only four days, completing over 46,000 repetitions of exercise, and 19,000 jumping jacks in one day! Next up: Scale the tallest mountain on Mars—Olympus Mons, a shield volcano that stands an estimated 72,000 feet tall.

Welcoming Families Back to School, Virtually Emblematic of a school year unlike any other, Pingry’s annual back-toschool events—traditionally held on-campus in each of the School’s three divisions—were hosted virtually this fall for the first time. Despite the unusual format—each division offered a combination of live Zoom calls and pre-recorded presentations—they were deemed a success!

“We’re here because of the extraordinary work of our faculty and staff who poured their heart and soul over the summer into making sure that we could be back in person. That is no small achievement, and we’re grateful for their efforts.” —HEAD OF SCHOOL MATT LEVINSON AT CONVOCATION

Outstanding Educator

Grade 3 Teacher Devan Zadrozny “meets” with parents during the Lower School’s Back-to-School Night on September 24.

Dr. Reid Cottingham, Upper School English Teacher and Director of Teaching and Learning, K-12, was selected for The University of Chicago’s Outstanding Educator Award. Each year, newly admitted UChicago students have the opportunity to reflect on their time in school and nominate an educator who played a significant role in their education, made a positive impact on their lives, and whose influence has brought them to where they are today. Dr. Cottingham was selected by Kaya Lee ’20. Read more in this issue about Dr. Cottingham’s co-leadership of Pingry’s collaboration with Global Online Academy.

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COMMENCEMENT After several months of speculation and planning, and dependence on government mandates, Pingry’s 159th Commencement Exercises were held outdoors on Parsons Field the evening of August 2—the first outdoor Commencement in 20 years—with proud graduates from the Class of 2020 and their families wearing masks and seated at chairs, six feet apart. It was an eagerly awaited, in-person event, following the virtual celebration that took place on June 7.

Part of every citizen’s mission is to help this country take the next step forward in its drive to form a more perfect union. This will not be easy; if it was easy, it would have already been accomplished. So, what will your contribution be? The current national debate is highly polarized and divisive. . . It is my hope that you can also be a voice for unification.”—JEFFREY EDWARDS ’78, P ’12, ’14, ’18, CHAIR OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

Be appreciative for the life you have, and give thanks to important people in your life. I learned this as I sat in my room during April. I paused and reflected on the good health of my family and friends and not about the cancellation of Prom. If you focus on the good in your life, it will make you so much happier. Joy is everywhere—sometimes, you just have to look for it.” —BURKE PAGANO ’20, CLASS PRESIDENT


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The last few months of our senior year have been nothing short of imperfect. But how will we define it? Will this be a lost year or a spark for hope? So much has been taken away, but so much more comes from the energy that has built up over these months. . . Twenty years from now, I am confident that the Class of 2020 will be better remembered for what we created and built rather than what we lost.”— BRIAN LI ’20, STUDENT BODY PRESIDENT AND VALEDICTORIAN

I am confident that you all will be agents of change in your communities, and don’t wait. . . you may see something that is an inequity. . . and I would encourage you to use your voice— it is powerful—and you can have an impact right away.”—MATT LEVINSON, HEAD OF SCHOOL

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Off to College The Class of 2020 is an accomplished group of 138 students who will continue their academic careers at 71 different colleges and universities around the country and abroad.


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The stats

22 7 7 1 3

28 16 15 39 8

National Merit Scholarship Commended Students National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists National Merit Scholarship Finalists National Merit Scholarship Winner National Hispanic Recognition Program Scholars

Cum Laude Society Members AP Scholars

AP Scholars with Honors AP Scholars with Distinction National AP Scholars

6 29 19 10

NCAA National Letter-of-Intent Signees Student-Athletes Headed to Division I and Division III College Athletics Programs Lifers (seniors who attended Pingry since Kindergarten) Legacies (seniors with at least one parent and/ or grandparent who also graduated from Pingry)

On the map CANADA :

Dartmouth College (2)

The list below indicates how many members of the class have enrolled at each school.

McGill University (2)

Middlebury College (2) Colgate University (5) Columbia University (5) Cornell University (2) Hamilton College (3) New York University (6) Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (2) Skidmore College (1) Syracuse University (1) Wagner College (1)



Babson College (1) Boston College (3) Boston University (1) College of the Holy Cross (1) Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1) Northeastern University (1) Tufts University (3) University of Massachusetts, Amherst (2) Brown University (1)

Carleton College (1)

Fairfield University (1) University of Connecticut (1) University of Michigan (1) Drew University (1) Princeton University (5)* Rutgers University (1)

Denison University (1) Miami University-Oxford (1) The Ohio State University (1) Northwestern University (2) University of Chicago (2)

Indiana University-Bloomington (1) University of Notre Dame (7)

Washington University in St. Louis (2)

Bucknell University (4) Dickinson College (1) Franklin & Marshall College (1) Gettysburg College (1) Lafayette College (3) Lehigh University (3) Pennsylvania State University (1) University of Pennsylvania (2) Villanova University (6) Loyola University Maryland (1)

Vanderbilt University (3) Clemson University (1)

Georgia Institute of Technology (1)

Georgetown University (4) Howard University (1) College of William & Mary (1) University of Virginia (2) Washington and Lee University (1) Davidson College (2) Duke University (1) University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1) Wake Forest University (4)

Southern Methodist University (1)

Tulane University (3)


Claremont McKenna College (2) Harvey Mudd College (1) Occidental College (1) San Diego State University (2) Stanford University (2) University of California, Berkeley (1) University of California, Los Angeles (1) University of Southern California (2)

University of Miami (1)

*Includes one graduate from the Class of 2019 ARIZONA : Arizona

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Faculty Awards and Chairs

With the following endowed award funds, generous donors have sought to encourage excellent teaching and coaching and recognize teachers’ contributions to the School. Read more about these awards, including the individuals for whom they are named, at PRESENTED IN JUNE 2020 ALBERT W. BOOTH MASTER CHAIR / 2020-2021

Leslie Miller P ’29, ’31 (Lower School Physical Education and Health) Nigel Paton P ’09 (Upper School English and Art History)


Dr. Megan Jones (History Department Chair; Upper School History)


Debra Tambor (Middle School Science)


Steve Benoit (World Languages Department Chair; Upper School French) Mike Coakley (Middle School Dean of Students; Middle School English)


Russell Christian (Lower School Visual Arts)


Gerardo Vazquez P ’18, ’19 (Upper School Spanish; Form VI Dean)


Davidson Barr (Upper School Math)


Tim Grant P ’03, ’06 (Chemistry; Girls’ Cross Country; Girls’ Spring Track)


Bria Barnes (Middle School English; Middle School Assistant Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) Helen Huang-Hobbs (Chemistry; Form III Dean)


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Margaret Kelleher ’01 (Middle School Latin; Middle School Language Coordinator)

Pingry Welcomes New Trustees, Faculty, and Staff

Trustees Margaret Santana P ’22, ’24, President of The Pingry School Parents’ Association (PSPA) for the 2020-21 school year, has been active with the PSPA since joining the Pingry community nine years ago. She has served on the Executive Board in various roles, including Lower School Representative, Middle School Representative, and Communications Vice President. She previously served as First Vice President. A homemaker with a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from Amherst College, Mrs. Santana previously worked in marketing and business development at American Express and is an avid volunteer, currently on the Board of Trustees for Meeting Essential Needs with Dignity, a hunger relief organization. She has also held various board positions with the Junior League of the Oranges and Short Hills. Mrs. Santana is married to Christopher Santana. Kevin Schmidt ’98, President of the Pingry Alumni Association (PAA), has been involved with the PAA for the past 12 years and previously held the position of Chair of the Athletics Hall of Fame Committee from 2010-2019. He is an Institutional Investment Consultant with RVK, Inc. where he works with corporate and public pension plans, endowments, foundations, and insurance plans. Prior to RVK, Mr. Schmidt worked as an Analyst and Portfolio Specialist at Invesco on their Quantitative Equity team and as a Client Portfolio Manager at OppenheimerFunds



on their Emerging Markets and International Small Cap Equity teams. Mr. Schmidt received a B.S. in Economics from the University of Maryland and an M.B.A. in Finance from Fordham University. He has served on the Somerset Hills Learning Institute’s Finance Committee and is also involved with Fordham University’s Mentoring Program. He is married to Kathy Kimber ’79, and the couple has four children.

John Holman ’79 Named Honorary Trustee Pingry’s newest Honorary Trustee is John W. Holman III ’79, P ’09, ’11, ’14, a member of the Board from 20002019, notably serving as Vice Chair of the Board, Chair of the Investment Committee, and Chair of the Headmaster Search Committee in 2004-05, which brought former Headmaster Nat Conard P ’09, ’11 to Pingry. During his service of nearly 20 years, Mr. Holman made significant contributions to the Committee on Trustees, and the Development and Strategic Planning Committees. He also co-chaired the Diversity & Inclusion Task Force and provided his expertise to the Financial Aid Task Force. Among his other contributions to Pingry, he has spoken at Career Day, volunteered for The Pingry Fund and Reunion, supported the Robotics Prize for seniors, and is a member of the True Blue Society and 1861 Leadership Society. Mr. Holman received The Cyril and Beatrice Baldwin Pingry Family Citizen of the Year Award (2006). JOHN HOLMAN ’79

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New Faculty and Staff

Uma Aviles P ’31, Upper School Academic Dean, previously worked as a grade-level dean, Upper School Director of Student Activities, and Upper School Diversity Coordinator at Trinity School in New York City. Mrs. Aviles received a B.A. in Theater from Rowan University.


Marcy Cohen, Academic Support Coordinator/Learning Specialist, has more than 15 years of experience as a Special Education Administrator. Prior to Pingry, Ms. Cohen worked at several schools in Massachusetts, including Pollard Middle School and Sharon Middle School. Ms. Cohen received a B.A. in Sociology from The University of Wisconsin, an M.A. in Teaching from The College of New Jersey, and an M.A. in Educational Leadership from Simmons College.






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Gabriella D’Amodio, Athletic Trainer, worked as an athletic training student at several independent schools, including The Lawrenceville School, West Morris Central High School, and Pingry (in 2018). She also interned at St. Peter’s University with their Division I men’s and women’s basketball, baseball, and softball teams. She received a B.A. in Social and Behavioral Science, and an M.S. in Athletic Training, from Seton Hall University. Kendall Davies, Kindergarten Teacher, spent three years at Stevens Cooperative School in Hoboken, where she taught Kindergarten through Grade 2. Ms. Davies received a B.S. in Early Childhood Education from Miami University.



Eric Bulakites, Middle and Upper School French Teacher, taught French as well as Film and Media Studies at Johns Hopkins University, where he was a Ph.D. student and obtained a certificate in Advanced Media Studies. He received a B.A. in Sociology from Georgetown University.

Bailey Farrell, Chemistry Teacher, worked as a test developer for Educational Testing Service (ETS), where she managed development, review, and analysis of the AP Chemistry exam. Before that, she taught advanced chemistry courses at Ransom Everglades School in Florida. She received a B.S. in Chemistry from Stanford University and an M.S. in Teaching from Fordham University. Dr. Lynne Feeley, Upper School English Teacher, worked at The Northwest School in Seattle, teaching American Literature and Environmental Humanities. Before Northwest, she taught American Literature for three years at Harvard University, where she earned an “Excellence in Teaching” award. She received a B.A. in English from Cornell University. As a Ph.D. student in English at Duke University, Dr.

Student Support Services Enhanced Feeley conducted research and taught undergraduate courses in American literature and composition.

Carl Frye, Big Blue Summer Camp Director, brings 15 years of business and youth athletics experience to Pingry’s Summer and Auxiliary Programs. In 2007, he founded Downtown Giants Youth Sports, located in Manhattan, and in 2015 founded Westlake Football Academy in Austin, TX. After joining Pingry as a substitute teacher and coach in 2019, he was pleased to transition into this new role. Mr. Frye received a B.A. in Business Management from Salve Regina University.

Recognizing the need for additional support this school year, as students adapt to different stressors and changes both within and outside of the school community, Pingry has hired several new employees to provide a more robust array of Student Support Services. The program is now overseen by Dean of College Counseling Timothy Lear ’92, P ’25, ’27, ’30, who adds Director of Student Support Services to his title. New to the team are Middle and Upper School Counselor Maurisa Thomas and new Basking Ridge Campus Learning Specialist Marcy Cohen. In addition, Dr. Julie O’Rourke will serve as Social-Emotional Learning Specialist, also on the Basking Ridge Campus, helping to integrate social and emotional learning into both existing and reimagined student support programs and services, advance community well-being initiatives, and ensure overall alignment and effectiveness of the student support program. In conjunction with the School’s existing counselors—Dr. Adam Rosen on the Basking Ridge Campus, and Dr. Alyssa Johns at the Lower School—these three new employees will help to coordinate the School’s strategic initiative in the realm of student well-being by working closely with key leadership as well as external partners.

Seth Goodwin, Upper School 3D Art Teacher, is an artist and a furniture maker who creates many sculptures using wood, clay, metal, and other found objects. Prior to Pingry, he was an adjunct professor at Montclair State University and Kean University for 15 years, teaching a variety of classes. Mr. Goodwin has also worked at museums, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Newark Museum of Art, and is co-director and founder of the Index Art Center, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting and promoting visual arts in Newark. He received a B.F.A. in Studio Art from Kean University and an M.F.A. in Studio Art from Montclair State University. Dr. Parminder Haven, Chemistry Teacher, taught science at several schools in New York City, including The Hewitt School, Riverdale Country School, and Hunter College. In

Lindsay Holmes-Glogower ’99, Director of People Operations and Talent Development, returned to Pingry this past school year in this newly created role, helping to ensure that the faculty and staff are able to perform to their very best potential and ability. Mrs. Holmes-Glogower taught and coached at Pingry from 2003-2006 (although she continued to coach girls’ varsity soccer for another five seasons), moved on to work for a health and wellness company, then switched to human resources and spent a decade in progressive roles at tech startups in New York City. Most recently, Mrs. Holmes-Glogower worked as a consultant to the Global Technology business at Warner Music Group. She received a B.A. in Political Science from Columbia University. Lisa Longo Johnston, Upper School English Teacher, joined Pingry with more than 10 years of experience in both teaching and administrative roles. Most recently, she was Assistant Dean for Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences as well as an adjunct professor at Northampton Community College. In addition to teaching at several




her most recent role at The Hewitt School, she taught General Chemistry, Honors Chemistry, and AP Chemistry. She received a B.S. in Chemistry and Education from Guru Nanak Dev University, an M.S. in Chemistry from Punjabi University, and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from The City University of New York.



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New Faculty and Staff

other colleges, Ms. Johnston held faculty roles at Mount Saint Mary Academy. She received a B.A. in History and Government/ Law from Lafayette College and an M.A. in History from Rutgers University.


Denise Lionetti ’85, Lower School Spanish Teacher, Grades 4 and 5, joins Pingry full-time after returning to the School last school year as a short-term substitute Lower School Spanish Teacher. She spent more than 15 years working at the Seabury Hall School in Maui, where she taught all levels of Spanish and served as the Foreign Language Department Chair. She received a B.A. in Art History from Rutgers University.







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Ellen Lazovick, Grade 3 Teacher, taught Grade 4 at Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School and Grade 6 at the Aaron School, both in New York City. She received a B.S. in Marketing from Penn State University and a Dual Masters in Childhood Education and Special Education from Fordham University’s Graduate School of Education.

Dr. Pamela Longo, Upper School English Teacher, joins the English Department full-time. She has taught across disciplines in English, history, and language programs at the secondary and college levels, and has been the recipient of multiple humanities research grants. Dr. Longo received a B.A. in English from Drew University and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Medieval Studies from the University of Connecticut. Dr. Thu-Nga Morris, Lower School Director, brings to Pingry more than a decade of experience in independent schools. She spent the last five years at St. Edmund’s Academy in Pittsburgh, where she served as Assistant Head of School, PreS-8; Director of Academics; and Director of the Upper School. Overseeing the school’s curriculum, instruction, and strategic academic programming, Dr. Morris was also the principal leader of St. Edmund’s remote learning program. As a first-generation undergraduate at Bowdoin College, she received an A.B. in Neuroscience and completed a master’s degree in Adolescent Education at Pace University as well as a Master of Education in Private School Leadership at the Klingenstein Program at Teachers College, Columbia University. Dr. Morris completed her doctoral degree in Educational Leadership at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education. Francis Odeh, Director of Squash and Head Coach of the Girls’ Varsity Squash Team, joined Pingry during the 2019-20 school year. He has served as a Squash Pro at the New York Sports Club and Downtown Athletics Club, both in New York City, as well as at The Club at Ricochet in South Plainfield, and Valkyrie Squash Club and Monmouth Squash Club in Sea Bright. His squash career began more than 30 years ago in Nigeria, where






he earned a #1 national ranking as both an adult (1994–1995) and junior (1986–1988) player. He is currently a member of the U.S Master’s Team. Mr. Odeh earned a B.A. in Physical Education and Sports at Lagos State University and holds a US SQUASH Level 2 Coaching Certification.

Gilberto Olvera, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, brings to Pingry more than 17 years of experience in independent schools. He spent the last five years as Head of the Upper School and, since last summer, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Chapin School Princeton. Since 2018, he also served as Chapin’s Director of Secondary School Guidance. He received a B.A. in Biology from Bucknell University and an M.S.Ed. in School Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania.

German from Western Washington State University and an M.S. in K-12 Teaching: German/Latin from Northwestern University.

Sean Petrie, Groundskeeper, worked at Prestige Plumbing and, prior to that, at RW Smith Landscaping. He graduated from The Delbarton School. Gabriela Reyes, Lower School Spanish Teacher, Grades K-3, taught Spanish to Lower School students at Leman Manhattan Preparatory School in New York City and worked as a bilingual teacher to students in her native Venezuela. She received a B.A. in Elementary Child Education from Universidad Metropolitana in Venezuela.

Dr. Julie O’Rourke, Academic & Social-Emotional SpecialCynthia (Cindy) Santiago, College Counselor, joins ist, has more than 20 years of experience in the field of child Pingry after serving for nearly 20 years in a number and adolescent psychology. In addition to her private pracof high-profile roles at her alma mater, Muhlenberg tice, she has extensive experience as a school psychologist College, most recently as Senior Associate Director of through her work at The Peck School. Admissions and Coordinator of She is also a member of NJ-1 DisasMulticultural Recruitment. In Lower School Expands ter Medical Assistance Team (NJ-1 2009, Mrs. Santiago received Associate Teacher Program DMAT) under the federal Department Muhlenberg’s Chairman of Health and Human Services. She Award, presented to one staff In preparation for the 2020-21 school year, received a B.A. in Psychology from member per year for outstandand the launch of Pingry Anywhere, the Lower Drew University and an M.A. and a ing service. She also received School hired Associate Teachers, expanding its Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the Human Relations ComAssociate Teacher Program in order to enhance the School’s ability to deliver excellence in the Boston College. mittee of the City of Allentown classroom. A two-year program, which includes Award in 2011. Mrs. Santiago immersive training and coaching, it supports Matthew Osborne, German and received a B.A. in Psychology individuals with a Bachelor’s degree who are Latin Teacher, joins Pingry after teachfrom Muhlenberg College. considering a career in education. Mentored ing German at T.C. Williams High and supervised by experienced Lower School School in Virginia. Prior to that role, he faculty, Associate Teachers co-teach lessons, served as a student teacher and fellow facilitate small-group learning, supervise at New Trier Township High School in in-school activities, and provide support to Illinois and Phillips Academy Andover classroom teachers. In considering candidates in Massachusetts. He received a B.A. in for these positions, Pingry sought out techsavvy, aspiring elementary educators. Read about the teachers at

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New Faculty and Staff

Frédérique Lear Schachter ’96, P ’27, ’30, ’33, Associate Director of Parent Engagement, joined Pingry during the 2019-20 school year. She worked in digital marketing and project management, most recently with the National Basketball Association. Fun fact: Her senior year ISP (Independent Study Project at the time) at Pingry took place with the Office of Institutional Advancement. Mrs. Schachter received an A.B. in Politics from Princeton University.



Katy Smoot, Upper School History Teacher, Grades 9 & 10, taught Social Studies at Ridgedale Middle School in Florham Park. Prior to that, she taught AP World History at Sammamish High School in Bellevue, WA. She received a B.A. in History from Boston University, an M.A. in Social Studies Education from New York University, and an M.S. in Educational Leadership from Baruch College. Taunita Stephenson, Associate Athletic Director as well as Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Coordinator for Athletics, joins Pingry from Alabama, where she was appointed by Birmingham’s mayor as the Director of The Birmingham Crossplex—a 750,000-square-foot multi-purpose athletics and meeting facility. Prior to this role, she served as Associate Athletics Director of Student Athlete Success at Lander University. She received a B.S. in Sports Management from Delaware State University and an M.B.A./Masters of Sport Business Management from the University of Central Florida.





Maurisa Thomas, Middle and Upper School Counselor, was previously a school counselor at Fisher Middle School in Ewing, where she also coached Girls on the Run. In addition to school counseling, she has clinical experience through the Center for Integrative Wellness at The College of New Jersey, Millhill Child and Family Development, and Raritan Valley Community College. She received a B.A. in History Secondary Education from The College of New Jersey and an M.A. in Mental Health Counseling with School Counselor Certification from New Jersey City University. Mojda Walker, Grade 4 Social Studies Teacher, is a seasoned elementary school teacher who has worked with students in Grades K-6 in a variety of settings. In addition to teaching at Saddle River Day School and the United Nations International School, she has taught outside of the U.S. at Vision International School in Qatar, Zurich International School in Switzerland, and Sharjah American International School in the United Arab Emirates. She received a B.A. in Child Psychology from Alfred University and an MS.Ed. from Pace University. Dr. Barrett Ward, Upper School English Teacher, arrives at Pingry with more than 15 years of U.S. military experience across a wide range of divisions. Most recently, he taught


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Read more about the new faculty and staff, as well as faculty and staff in new roles, at

Farewell to Faculty and Staff Colleen Collins, Lower School Systems Administrator and a valued member of the Technology Department, has retired. Among her many behind-the-scenes efforts with technology, she played a major role in the technology installations and wiring when the Lower School was modernized. “The past 19 years working at Pingry have been some of the best and most rewarding years of my life,” she says. “From the kids, who keep us young and always wanting to learn, to my colleagues, who have become my best friends, to an amazing team that I have had the honor of working with, I do feel so blessed.”



English Literature at the United States Air Force Academy and, prior to that, he served as an instructor at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point for three years. He also served as an Officer in the active duty Army for just under 14 years and lived, among many other places, in Baghdad, Iraq, and Daegu, South Korea. Dr. Ward received a B.A. in History from Texas Christian University and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in English Literature from The University of Texas at Austin.

Dr. J. Kenneth Watts, Lower School Music Teacher, K-3, began his career as a music teacher before deciding to become a school administrator. He has held several administrative positions in New Jersey and was the vice principal at Montclair High School. Dr. Watts received a B.S. in Education from Western Illinois University, an M.A. in Educational Administration from Kean University, and a Doctor of Arts in Educational Administration from Nova Southeastern University. Karl Weber, Grade 5 Social Studies Teacher, arrives at Pingry following a year at The Packer Collegiate Institute, where he worked as a Grade 3 associate teacher. He also has additional teaching experience from his work at Bank Street School for Children. Mr. Weber received a B.S. in Business Administration from Colorado State University and an M.S. in Education from the Bank Street Graduate School of Education.

Returned to Pingry William Lagarde, Upper School Math Teacher, has returned after receiving a Master’s degree from Teachers College at Columbia University.

Patty Finn, Lower School Music Teacher and a member of the Magistri, has retired after a 36-year Pingry career. “I have loved my tenure at Short Hills, working with some amazing educators and being able to share my love of music with so many wonderful children and families,” she says. Mrs. Finn also directed the Lower School Handbell Choir, composed music for school concerts and classroom lessons, arranged music to help students learn their instruments, and originated the morning announcements that focused on strengthening the Code of Conduct/Honor Code. In addition, she received The E. Murray Todd Faculty Chair (1998) and The Albert W. Booth Master Chair (2017) and two summer fellowships. Read more about her approach to teaching and composing—including 30 published children’s songs—in the Fall 2016 issue of The Pingry Review. Eileen Hymas, C.B. Newton Library Director for the past 19 years, has retired. During her years at Pingry, the library’s digital and online resources grew exponentially, including more than 100,000 academic ebooks that students may come across in college. Along with those resources, Mrs. Hymas oversaw the ordering and cataloging of paper books to meet the needs of the curriculum and to represent the student body’s interests and perspectives. She also played a role in designing the Reading Room when the Basking Ridge Campus clock tower was reconstructed 10 years ago. A recipient of the Woodruff J. English Award (2009) and two summer fellowships, Mrs. Hymas is grateful for her time at Pingry, valued friendships with her colleagues, and the chance to be part of “this vast world of human knowledge and research that is immediately accessible to our students, faculty, and staff.” Dale Seabury, Director of Strategic Communications and Marketing since 2015, has left Pingry after 13 years. She joined the School as Assistant Director of Athletics, transitioned to the Admission Office as Assistant Director of Admission and Coordinator of Financial Aid (later becoming Director of Financial Aid), and then led Communications, including collaboration on redesigns of and The Pingry Review, oversight of marketing videos, and a key role on the crisis management team. “It was a privilege to learn from talented and dedicated colleagues and grow as a professional in three distinct roles and departments during my 13-year tenure,” she says. “I will dearly miss many Pingrians I call friends, and advisees and families with whom I had the pleasure to work.” T H E P I N G R Y R E V I E W | FA L L 2 0 2 0


View from

Lower School students outside for mask breaks and fresh air on the Short Hills Campus.


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What do you do if you plan to teach students in school today, but might have to teach them at home tomorrow? INNOVATE!




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Pingry Anywhere Ever since the COVID-19 pandemic turned the world upside down, and colleges, universities, and school districts have been wrestling with the question of whether and how to reopen, Head of School Matt Levinson’s mantra for Pingry has been, “We are not waiting for things to happen to us. We are going to make things happen for us.” With that in mind, in early summer, administrators made a bold decision to take action, working tirelessly to prepare a cutting-edge, flexible learning model—unprecedented in the School’s history—called Pingry Anywhere. Millions of dollars were invested in infrastructure, training, equipment, face masks, face shields/protective eyewear, plexiglass, and other needs. “The School is fortunate to have significant financial reserves that allow us to invest as necessary in response to unforeseen challenges, such as COVID-19,” says Chief Financial and Operating Officer Olaf Weckesser P ’25. “This is a result of the generosity of generations of Pingry families who have supported Pingry throughout the years.” Complementing these investments were round-the-clock efforts of the Technology, Facilities, and Operations Departments, as well as other administrators, faculty, and staff, and the implementation of numerous health and safety measures. In September, thanks to all of this behind-the-scenes work, School fully reopened with the launch of Pingry Anywhere. It was designed with the following four guiding principles in mind: Inclusion, Information, Innovation, and Inspiration.

Inclusion Central to Pingry Anywhere is the School’s ability to pivot to any teaching scenario at any time—ranging from 100 percent in-person to 100 percent remote, with any blended or “hybrid” scenario in between. Thanks to the launch of Pingry Anywhere, the School will be able to transition, as needed, based on guidance or mandates from Governor Phil Murphy and local authorities. This blended or “hybrid” setup means that any given class has a group of students in the classroom and another, generally smaller group of students following along from home, both synchronously and asynchronously. For example, if a student does not feel comfortable coming to school, was found to have had contact with an individual who tested positive for COVID-19 and must quarantine, or wants the flexibility and opportunity to learn remotely, they may, on any given day, log on to their classes from home. In this way, Pingry Anywhere ensures equity and access for all students at all times, from technology to classroom materials (take-home kits, containing common materials used in class, were given to remote students in various courses in all three divisions). Plus, all student clubs, affinity groups (students who share an identity), and allyship groups (students promoting the School’s work in diversity, equity, and inclusion) can meet online, and GSA (Gender and Sexuality Alliance) hosted a National Coming Out Day celebration that was streamed so students could participate remotely. continued on page 24 T H E P I N G R Y R E V I E W | FA L L 2 0 2 0


“Our Tech Team has been tireless in helping us learn new technology. They rock—I have nothing but the highest praise for our Tech Department.”—JUDY PREVITI

Microphones and speakers were installed in ceilings to enhance the audio

Facilities Team members constructed approximately 1,000 plexiglass dividers for both campuses

CLASSROOM TECHNOLOGY The Technology Department has worked tirelessly to equip classrooms with hardware and software to make remote learning possible, and assembled the “Pingry Anywhere Tech Playbook” with guidelines for classroom setup and student engagement.


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Zoom and its breakout rooms are being used for video conferencing (security issues mentioned in the media have been resolved by Zoom or addressed by Pingry)

A large-screen monitor mounted above the camera enables those in the classroom to see the remote learners

Software for video creation and sharing includes Edpuzzle, Loom, Flipgrid, and BrainPOP For teachers’ online course organization: Schoology and Google Classroom A video camera enables remote learners to see the classroom

Students can collaborate through Google apps, Padlet, and Schoology discussion forums Teachers can record screencasts, video recordings of what occurs on a presenter’s computer screen


All K-12 students have either a Chromebook and iPad (K-5) or laptop (6-12)

“If we ever go remote again, I now know of a diverse range of ways to give students feedback, including having students give feedback to each other.” —MIDDLE SCHOOL SCIENCE TEACHER CECILY MOYER

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Information A Multi-Layered Approach to Health and Safety

To reopen both campuses—and keep them open—the community’s safety and well-being are top priorities. Acknowledging that no single method will keep everyone safe, the School designed a system of dozens of protocols and innovations intended to reinforce one another. “From the very beginning, we have understood that achieving a completely risk-less school environment is simply not possible. But we are continually challenging ourselves to research, comprehend, and proactively respond to all known and reasonable risks in order to minimize them on both campuses as much as possible,” says David Fahey ’99, Director of Operations, Safety, and Strategic Initiatives. Exceeding regulatory guidelines and requirements established by agencies that include the CDC and New Jersey Department of Education, the protocols include:

6 feet


Outdoor student villages (tents that allow students to spread out)

Weekly, pooled saliva-based testing for COVID-19 for all students, faculty, and staff

Commercial-grade bipolar ionization air filters added to the HVAC systems

Online pre-arrival health screening form completed by students, faculty, and staff before they leave home each morning

Single-serve, individually boxed food

Daily temperature checks are performed on all students, faculty, and staff before they are allowed to enter the buildings

Outdoor dining spaces

Pingry-issued face masks and face shields/protective eyewear are mandatory

Surface samples are taken every other week from all campus buildings and tested for COVID-19 by an outside company that specializes in pathogen detection

Facilities Team members constructed approximately 1,000 plexiglass dividers for classrooms on both campuses

Electrostatic cleaners and a rigorous, regular cleaning schedule

Social distancing wherever possible, with directional signage

Internal contact tracing team

Installation of touchless and self-cleaning surfaces

COVID-19 Tracking Dashboard (partially coded and created by Andrew Beckmen ’19 and Jeff Xiao ’19), reflecting campus operations; test results; and quarantine and isolation percentages by campus

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Innovation Taking the Time for Training

Back in March, when the pandemic was worsening and Mr. Levinson announced that Pingry would be transitioning to remote learning for at least three weeks, the School needed to act and think quickly to adapt classroom curricula for an online environment—a new experience in an emergency situation. Three weeks became three months when Governor Murphy closed schools for the rest of the academic year. But then summer came, giving Pingry time to prepare its teachers for whatever fall might bring. Thus, all Lower, Middle, and Upper School teachers were presented with four weeks, spread over June and July, of extensive training to teach online.

Global Online Academy (GOA) > Effective Course Content

Over the course of those four weeks, faculty had the opportunity to work with coaches at GOA, a nonprofit educational organization that helps students, teachers, and administrators (in a consortium of about 80 schools) reimagine what online learning—and overall course design—can look like. “In an emergency situation, it is difficult to be intentional [with adapting the curriculum for online learning], so GOA enabled us to be intentional,” says Dr. Delvin Dinkins, Assistant Head of School, K-12. Dr. Dinkins is leading Pingry’s collaboration with GOA along with Dr. Reid Cottingham, Upper School English Teacher and Director of Teaching and Learning, K-12; and Brian Burkhart, Computer Science Department Chair, Director of Technology and Curricular Initiatives, and Upper School English Teacher. (Pingry’s partnership with GOA began a couple of years ago through pilot programs, but the pandemic accelerated the collaboration.) “We wanted to be in a better position to deliver content online if needed, and there are many things that GOA brings to class design that could be applied remotely and in-person, such as how to include experiential learning and making sure that a student knows how to navigate a course,” Dr. Cottingham says, noting that teachers also gained empathy by becoming students again. “If they were feeling overwhelmed, it made them consider how their courses might be experienced by their students.” She also adds: “GOA is about online work, but the emphasis is less on technology and more on how to design an effective course, with technology as a tool.”

What Makes for High-Quality Online Learning?

How does GOA maintain standards for high-quality online education? Context, for starters. “We think of ‘online’ as a platform and not a pedagogy,” says Deep Sidhu, GOA’s Associate Director of Professional Learning. “In working with Pingry teachers, we hoped to partner with them to continue to elevate pedagogical practices and priorities for student learning and equip them with ways to sustain that level of teaching and learning online.” Specifically, GOA’s work with Pingry faculty centered around the following five norms:

1 2 3 4 5

Build trust (learner accountability is developed through trust, care, and high expectations) Challenge students (through the complexity of the work, not time and pace)

Redefine time (as synchronous and asynchronous, not classwork and homework) Support agency (online learners need time, space, and support)

Diversify interactions (different ways to connect with each other)

“GOA was a wonderful experience. Faculty really dug in—we made some amazing strides, the commitment was heartening, and we want to leverage that momentum,” Dr. Dinkins said in July after training concluded. The next step was for teachers to translate the GOA lessons into the “everyday” approach of Pingry Anywhere, and one of the resources at their disposal was a Pingry-designed step-by-step

“Our movement forward as an organization is being accelerated by our partnership with Global Online Academy, and I see that as a silver lining during the pandemic.” —DR. REID COTTINGHAM

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tually? Basing their lessons on the popular children’s book series Pete the Cat, Mrs. Previti and Ms. Davies read books (each of which had a theme); split the students into two breakout groups for activities based on the theme; and led the children in singing songs (complete with sign language) and movement activities. In the afternoons, students worked on STEAM projects, such as making a musical instrument. The teachers also made reading and math exercises available, for added enrichment. Short Courses: “Parents reached out to us, saying that their children Teachers Test Their New Knowledge woke up excited to start the course each morning and To bridge the gap between their GOA training and enjoyed the afternoon activities provided. We were the start of the school year, faculty members also praised for our class organization and use of technolohad the opportunity to propose Short Courses to be gy,” Ms. Davies says. One parent, Laura Yorke Kulkarni taught for one or two weeks in early August (with ’98, P ’33, wrote, “As a fellow educator and long-time Pingry students and friends enrolled). These sample community member, I was impressed and proud of how classes—12 were delivered—were an effective way you are adapting to changing circumstances and times for faculty to test the strategies they had learned and ensuring our children can still have the best educawith GOA, and test the blended learning approach tion and experience. Thank you!” central to Pingry Anywhere. Meanwhile, Biology Teacher and Farm and SusFor example, Kindergarten Teachers Judy Previti tainability Coordinator Olivia Tandon and Middle and and Kendall Davies teamed up for a one-week Short Upper School French Teacher Anne Changeux, who Course called “Ready, Set, School!” for 25 rising share a love of cooking and culture and an interest in Kindergarten and first-grade students (Ms. Davies farming, designed their own two-week Short Course, is new to Pingry and stepped in on short notice to “Bon Appétit,” for Middle School students. With porco-teach, which proved to be beneficial because she tions of three days spent on campus, and the other met the students sooner). “We wanted to offer someseven days spent remotely, the course took advantage of thing that would let the students get to know us and Pingry’s new farm and garden program in an interdishave a fun experience before they started Pingry. We ciplinary way, combining French language and culture, also wanted to apply the technology we learned in science and sustainability, and “how to”s GOA [including Google Classroom (farm-related activities, as well as reciand Zoom], and we wanted to test pes so students could cook at home). ourselves to see if we could do two “We were missing the campus, so we hours of synchronous learning with The School is surveying students, parents, faculty, and staff on an ongoing basis needed to be on campus, no matter for such young children. It was also about their experiences with Pingry how long,” Mrs. Changeux says. The goal, good for the students to get to know Anywhere. Learn more about Pingry explained by Ms. Tandon in an introduceach other,” Mrs. Previti says. Anywhere at pingryanywhere. org, tory video: “immerse yourself in the life And how does one spend two and read more about Pingry’s of an active farm, and use farm-to-table hours with 25 six-year-olds in the collaboration with Global Online Academy at practices to develop an understanding of middle of a summer morning—vircourse design guide, with templates. Among the changes that teachers are making to their classes: more opportunities for students to connect with each other and with teachers; additional choices for student assessments and assignments; increased visibility, readability, and navigability of online content; and greater use of pre-reflection and reflection before, during, and after units.

“As a member of the Board of Trustees and a Pingry parent, it has been exhilarating to participate in the creation of Pingry Anywhere and watch the School thoughtfully and truly transform from March to September in order to offer the Pingry experience we all expect. Our family increased our support to The Pingry Fund to ensure that the School has the flexibility and resources to invest in the future, especially at a time when there are unknowns we could have never predicted.” —TRUSTEE DEV ITTYCHERIA P ’19, ’22 26

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INTERNAL GUIDANCE FROM PINGRY'S DESIGN COACHES Through their work with GOA, administrators learned that Pingry could create a team of coaches—instructional design coaches—to work with the faculty after their formal GOA training ended. Led by Dr. Danielle Mirliss P ’26, Middle School Computer Science Teacher and Educational Technology and Innovation Coordinator, and Rebecca Sullivan, Upper School Visual Arts Teacher and Director of Experiential Education, 12 teachers from across K-12 are now further supporting their colleagues. The team is guiding the faculty to adopt new technology, design course content, and become comfortable with Pingry Anywhere.

Simply stated, the past nine months have been a time of motivation and inspiration for Pingry. The School has been inspired to rise above a challenge nobody could ever have imagined to continue delivering on its mission of academic excellence; instead of being afraid or feeling helpless in the shadow of the pandemic, Pingry has reimagined itself. Along with the curricular and health and safety approaches already mentioned, the success of Pingry Anywhere is dependent on the end-to-end student experience—ranging from getting to/from school to lunch/snack setups to interacting with others—and the continuation of strong student-teacher relationships. For this reason, the Lower School expanded its Associate Teacher program to provide better support to teachers and another important point of contact for young students (read more on page 15). Similarly, counseling/student support services have been expanded to ensure that students have access to the wellness resources they need, especially now (read more on page 13). It may be hard to see now, while we are in the moment, but how will we look back on 2020-21 and these unforeseen challenges? Certainly not with despair for all of the differences, or “lost” moments, but with admiration for what the Pingry community was able to accomplish. Regardless of the hardships faced over its history, the School continues to find ways to adapt and innovate.


food culture throughout the French-speaking world.” The course illustrated how experiential education can be incorporated into—and enhance—a remote learning scenario, and students benefited from regaining a sense of community and collaboration in the midst of the isolation caused by COVID-19. From Ms. Tandon’s perspective, this course was an example of how teachers can use the campus’ outdoor resources while engaged in blended learning— the signature aspect of Pingry Anywhere. “Having a remote component and a separate on-campus component showed that different activities can complement each other and lead to greater understanding. It also helped me think about how I can use outdoor resources with in-person learners in a way that won’t make remote learners feel left out.”


Students participate in the two-week Short Course "Bon Appétit" that took advantage of Pingry's burgeoning farm and garden program to introduce students to French cuisine and culture.

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Creative Care HISTORICALLY, THE MEDICAL FIELD HAS LACKED IMAGINATION, IF YOU ASK DR. BON KU '91. HE WANTS TO REDESIGN IT. “Creativity is the most underappreciated skill set in the health care workforce . . . making people healthier is actually a creative pursuit,” he has said in public presentations, such as a 2018 Quality Talk presented by the National Committee for Quality Assurance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. What can be done about that lack of creativity? An emergency medicine physician at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, as well as Assistant Dean for Health & Design at Thomas Jefferson University, Dr. Ku is Co-Founder and Director of the Jefferson Health Design Lab. Thanks largely to his efforts, “Jefferson” is the country’s first medical school with a design thinking curriculum (launched in 2014), although other

medical schools have also adopted the idea, and it reflects his effort to bring the concept of “design thinking” into health care. Dr. Ku has stated in presentations that there’s a “misconception that logic and rational thinking alone will make good doctors.” He has even acknowledged the odd looks from colleagues when they learn that he teaches design thinking to medical students. So, what is design thinking, especially as it relates to the medical field? “It’s a new concept that’s not well known among physicians,” he says. “It’s a framework for applying creativity to problem solving. Creativity is embraced by other industries—they see it as an essential skill—but it’s a foreign concept in medicine. Because doctors are often faced with coming up with solutions to some of the most challenging, complex problems in a very regulated industry, our industry demands as much creativity as other fields, but it is not as encouraged as it should be. With the pandemic,

In the Media cians (below) on the TNT program Chasing the Cure, on which doctors try to determine diagnoses for challenging cases. “We have a fragmented, fractured, broken medical system—so broken that patients had to go on a television show to get their diagnoses,” he says. “It all comes back to the opportunity to redesign the medical system, from policy

creation to how hospitals and doctors get paid to how to better use data to help patients.” A new podcast, Design Lab with Bon Ku, features stories about the intersection of design, art, science, and health (cms.megaphone. fm/channel/bonku).


Dr. Ku is co-author of a new book, Health Design Thinking: Creating Products and Services for Better Health, based on his experiences in the Health Design Lab. He describes the book as an “easy handbook for anyone who wants to apply design in a health care space.” He has appeared as one of four physi-


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we’ve seen that we need to be creative in coming up with solutions to diseases that we’ve never faced.” All design thinking relies on three principles: prototyping (using common, everyday objects to illustrate ideas), storytelling (with storyboards), and co-creating (designing for and with the end user in mind). This last element is particularly important. “Traditionally, the medical field has come up with solutions without engaging stakeholders,” Dr. Ku explains. “But the key is—early in the process—to bring in who you’re designing for because they have an expertise. It’s a more robust conversation.” Yes, he and his team have actually asked former patients for insights into redesigning a service or developing a device. “Patients are the experts of their own disease, and we want to honor that expertise. They love being asked. They want their voice to be heard, instead of the mindset of ‘doctor knows best.’ For example, a patient with insulin-dependent diabetes is going to know a lot more than I do about the complexities of giving yourself insulin multiple times each day and the struggle of having a low-carbohydrate diet. Until we know what the patient is experiencing and living with, we cannot prescribe the best treatment.”


elping people is what motivated Dr. Ku to enter the medical field, although it wasn’t his first choice. His parents, immigrants from South Korea, had what he calls “their American dream for their son to become a doctor.” His reasons for resisting? He didn’t like science, hated math, and—that’s right—believed other fields were more creative. But Dr. Ku did eventually decide to apply to medical school because he liked having the ability to connect with people and meet their health care needs. He figured this out through volunteering with medical teams in El Salvador and Guatemala while he was an undergraduate majoring in Classical Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. Then, he selected emergency medicine for its pace, the opportunity to treat patients with undifferentiated illnesses (not easily diagnosed by conventional thinking, or “not textbook”), and to treat patients irrespective of their ability to pay (federal law requires anyone coming to an ER to receive treatment regardless of payment ability, which is not the case with other medical specialties). But something happened in the ER: he began to experience burnout and felt dehumanized. His solution was to tap into the creativity he felt was trapped inside of him as a result of the rote memorization and regurgitation of facts required by medical school—something else he believes needs to be fixed. “The medical school formula hasn’t changed in over 100 years,” he points out. “The American medical education system—really, the entire higher education system—is traditional, with students passively sitting in large lecture halls, receiving a fire hydrant of information from senior physicians. When it comes to lecture halls, we have to look at how people learn. Design thinking amplifies that movement.”

“Because doctors are often faced with coming up with solutions to some of the most challenging, complex problems in a very regulated industry, our industry demands as much creativity as other fields.”

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Because of that format of memorization and reliance on textbooks, Dr. Ku’s position is that doctors aren’t equipped to think creatively about new problems such as COVID-19. Hence, his decision to try to do something about it by founding the Health Design Lab. “In our curriculum, we give medical students real problems and provide a framework to solve those problems, like redesigning spaces. We’re currently facing this problem: How do I keep myself and the other health care workers from becoming infected by the coronavirus? That’s not something I learned

in medical school, but it’s a challenging, pressing problem that demands creative solutions. How do we rethink the configuration of spaces to keep staff and patients socially distant? That can’t be taught in a textbook, but it can be taught through the framework of design thinking.” In the Health Design Lab, which Dr. Ku describes as a “test kitchen where we are always thinking of new recipes for health care,” 100 medical students, research interns, and research fellows use tools that range from LEGOs to 3D printers, working with designers from different fields. Teamwork is crucial to the lab’s productivity, just as it’s crucial to collaboration among hospital Q&A with Research Fellow Michelle Ho staff—physicians, nurses, clinical teams, and others—when it comes to making decisions such as how For more perspective on Dr. Ku’s What did you work on? I focused on work, The Pingry Review spoke with to design spaces (exam rooms, for designing and printing 3D models for Michelle Ho, a 2019-20 Research presurgical planning, simulation, and example). “We bring in a diverse Fellow in the Health Design Lab patient education. group of stakeholders,” Dr. Ku says. “Medicine is a team-based sport, What brought you to the How could design thinking be further so we work together as a team and Health Design Lab? I came to medincorporated into your work and into incorporate everyone’s expertise.” ical school after working in clinical the health care field, in general? Teamwork also comes into play research and studying engineering I will be applying to radiology residency when the staff uses role playing to and anthropology at Penn. I saw programs. Within the field of radiology, modify procedures so a hospital is design thinking as a unique approach there is a lot of space to explore how prepared to handle more acutely to integrate my past experiences imaging results are communicated to ill patients while keeping staff with my medical training. patients—with advances in technology, members safe. patients have more access than ever to Prior to your time in the Health Design Lab, what was your understanding of design thinking? I thought design thinking involved lots of people standing in front of a white board, writing down as many ideas as they could on Post-it Notes.

Has that understanding changed? If so, how? The biggest change has been prototyping. So often in health care, we are taught that there is only one right answer on a test or that you have to get something right on the first try. Through prototyping, I have grown more comfortable with embracing failure and seeing it as an opportunity to pivot to something better. I have also found that having simple, low-fidelity methods often facilitates better conversation among the team because people don’t get married to one idea or material too quickly.


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their health information, but not necessarily the tools to understand everything. I hope to apply design thinking principles to understand the best methods to empower patients with knowledge about their health. Health care can be a very hierarchical field that takes a “top down” approach to change. I hope design thinking is seen and taught as a way to value the insights and experiences of all trainees, patients, family members, and members of the health care team to create an ecosystem that truly serves and supports the health of all. How has Dr. Ku shaped your understanding of design thinking? He has challenged me to always think of design thinking as an iterative process that is informed by user feedback—to be comfortable with starting over and reframing the problem. Within health care, he has also emphasized that what patients experience outside of the hospital is just as important as what happens inside.


eturning to the burnout he experienced in the ER . . . the whirlwind of providing emergency care made Dr. Ku feel that he had lost empathy for his patients.

“Pingry provided me with the ideal environment to explore, imagine, and create.”


He wants to avoid that, and he wants his students to avoid that, too. “I want to help students become better physicians and creative problem solvers who have more empathy,” he declares. “We need to think of the whole person—not just the diseases they have, but the person and the communities they come from. We Rescue Ventilation and Other Responses to COVID-19 have students go into local communities, especially those that are low income and Dr. Ku’s Health Design Lab has responded to the Other responses seem to be health care deserts. Where COVID-19 pandemic with a burst of activity. One of to COVID-19 include you live is the best predictor of health, its innovations, a worst-case scenario in the event > 3D printing of 35,000 better than genetics.” of a shortage of ventilators, is the double-filtered nasopharyngeal swabs Empathy, of course, is an enormous bag ventilation method* that allows medical staff for testing part of the human-centered, docto safely and manually ventilate patients by using > 3D printing to repair tor-patient relationship, which is being a bag valve mask; the mask is normally used for face shields and other patients with infectious disease who require intuseverely tested during COVID-19. With personal protective bation (inserting a tube in the throat), but it is not so many patients unable or unwilling to equipment routine to use the mask for prolonged manual venvisit doctors’ offices, telehealth is surgtilation (substituting for a machine). > receiving a grant from ing—so, again, in Dr. Ku’s eyes, this is a This method requires two HEPA filters (one a the City of Philadelphia to case when design enhancements could backup for the other) to be connected to the bag; perform COVID-19 testing improve technology. “Telehealth can be the second one is added by using a 3D-printed in “testing deserts” in more user friendly for patients. It should “connector.” Because some patients require a the city be as easy to message your physician PEEP valve for ventilation (Positive End-Expiratory > giving input to redesign as it is to send a text message to your Pressure, which maintains airway pressure to preER spaces, to keep friend. And with different ways of delivvent lung injury), a second 3D-printed connector patients further away ering medicine, we still have to keep it attaches the second HEPA filter to the PEEP valve. from each other human-centered,” he says. * A joint effort among the lab, a local architecture firm, and Stanford Along with telehealth, a recent trend University’s Anesthesia Informatics and Media Lab in design innovation is the increasing use of data to guide doctors in their decision making—but specifically, how to use data in real time, a process that COVID-19 is also second option is not only possible, but also necexposing as problematic. “Electronic health records were essary. “Blend traditional scientific methods with designed for billing, and the pandemic has exposed that the creative mindset. People become trapped vulnerability,” Dr. Ku observes. “It would be nice to make in a pathway because they’re good at something decisions based on real-time data, but I’ve had to turn to that dictates their career, but that mindset is not social media postings by doctors I know and trust. The healthy. It disappoints me that people who are ideal would be to use data from other hospitals, in real creative don’t go to medical school—fewer than time. We’re nowhere near that. Data warehouses are five percent of med students are Humanities siloed among heath care systems and insurers.” majors. We are all born creative. We are used to Are the health care field and creativity destined to prototyping—thinking with our hands. Creativity be at odds, with one having to be forced on the other? Or and science go hand in hand.” can they merge and easily exist together? Dr. Ku says the

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SERVING Pursuing a career in the military is not a common trajectory for Pingry alumni. Though admittance rates are equally competitive, graduates are more likely to aim for the Ivies than suffer the grueling physical demands of field training after a day of classes at one of the nation's elite military academies. But a number of young alumni, in particular, have made the choice to serve. Since 2010, four Pingry graduates have attended one of the academies—one at West Point, one at Coast Guard, and two at the Naval Academy. Many more have pursued ROTC (Reserve Officers' Training Corps) programs as undergraduates at other colleges and universities. Still others have completed Officer Candidate Schools after graduating from college. A common theme among these alumni is a desire to expand their horizons, take advantage of an uncommon opportunity, feel engaged and purposeful, and be part of something larger than themselves. As Dean of College Counseling and Director of Student Support Services Tim Lear '92, P ’25, ’27, ’30 says, "At a time when we talk about sacrifice and community and common good, I'm thrilled that Pingry students would choose to attend a service academy and prioritize service alongside a worldclass education." Meet five of these Pingry alumni, all of whom graduated within the last seven years. Their stories are both unique and uniquely exciting—experiences range from monitoring fall-out in the Middle East following the assassination of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani, to dodging kangaroos while training alongside Australian forces in the Outback. Unifying them all is their connection to Pingry and the impact the school had—in one way or another—on their decision to serve.


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“Step out of college on Day 1 and you’ve got one of the most meaningful jobs on the planet.”



wo summers ago, over the course of five weeks, Aidan Dillon ’18 trained with the surface Navy in Norfolk, went underway with submarines based in San Diego, engaged in simulated combat (paintballs, not bullets, shot from their M16 rifles) with the Marine Corps at Camp Lejeune, and flew over Virginia Beach with F18 pilots from Oceana Naval Base. Were it not for COVID-19, he would have spent several weeks this past summer living on a Naval carrier or submarine. Not exactly standard summer fare for a college student, but that’s precisely what Aidan—a junior at Notre Dame University—likes about being in the School’s Navy ROTC (Reserve Officer Training Corps) program. It’s not often that a Pingry graduate pursues an ROTC program in college. As Aidan explains, “The culture of Pingry is 180 degrees from what you’d expect in a very structured military environment.” More practically, many Pingry students don’t know that ROTC is an option, or even what it is. Despite the fact that his father was an ROTC graduate in college, it really wasn’t on his radar. A wrestler and lacrosse player at Pingry, Aidan was considering playing a sport in college and applied to many Division III schools. He was also mulling over the Naval Academy, but he wasn’t sure he wanted to sacrifice

having a “normal” college experience. Then, a Naval Admissions representative encouraged him to consider the ROTC route. He filled out an ROTC application as well as applications to his top five schools, all of which offer ROTC programs. He was accepted by ROTC and Notre Dame, his father’s alma mater; ROTC offered him a full scholarship. “ROTC is a really good deal,” he says. “If you’re not all about going to the Academy and living that sort of life 24/7, you can go to a regular, fouryear college, be a college student, and still follow the same general training process as students at the Academy would get.” If a summer spent training, in part, with Top Gun pilots is any indication, ROTC makes for a unique college experience. His routine last school year: From 6:00 to 7:00 a.m., four days a week, Aidan reported to Notre Dame’s Loftus Sports Center or athletics fields for physical training, which included running, pushups, sit-ups, and other calisthenics. On Wednesdays, he and fellow ROTC

candidates were expected to wear their uniforms all day, following a two-hour-long morning drill period, which involved uniform inspection, briefs from Navy SEALS, and presentations from officers. Twice a week, they sat for a “regular,” three-credit, Naval-intensive class, which covered an array of related topics, like navigation, chart- and instrument-reading; naval science basics, such as weapons systems and rank structure; and leadership and management training. In addition, each summer brings a new excursion, or “cruise,” as they’re called, in which ROTC midshipmen are exposed to many facets of the Navy, whether on land, in an aircraft, or on the sea (carriers and submarines). The regimen, demanding by most college standards, felt like a natural extension of his athletic pursuits at Pingry. “My experiences wrestling and playing lacrosse got me used to a certain structure and discipline that I grew to enjoy,” he says. “Pingry also prepared me well academically. If you’re going to an Academy or ROTC program, you’re expected to maintain T H E P I N G R Y R E V I E W | FA L L 2 0 2 0


at least a 3.0 grade-point average, and continuously perform academically, while having other responsibilities. Pingry definitely got me ready for the workload.” Why did he choose Navy ROTC and not Army or Air Force? His father, who went on to become a SEAL for eight years—meeting the Prince of Denmark was a story he used to tell all three Dillon kids—was certainly a source of influence, he says. His father’s father was also in the Navy, and several relatives on his mother’s side were members of either the Navy or the Marine Corps. Beyond the familiarity generated by family history, Aidan is excited by the many specializations that a Naval skill-set affords, which he says are more technical than the Army. “There are so many options, from going into special warfare to flying F18s to being on a sub.” Upon graduation, Aidan, currently a Marketing major at Notre Dame, is committed to serving for at least five years; he’s not yet sure what path he will take. “Right now, I’m attempting to go into Naval Special Warfare to become a SEAL. Special Warfare and BUDS (Basic Underwater Demolition School) are two of the most competitive occupations in the Navy,” he explains. “Less than 10% of the men and women who are chosen from the Navy’s best and attempt to enter this pipeline actually end up becoming a SEAL.” No positions are guaranteed, however; the Navy has the final say. “A lot of people tend to think if you join the Navy it has to be something you do for life. That’s not always the case,” he says. “You acquire a lot of really valuable skills, and many will go on to law school or business school right after they serve.” Most important to Aidan is the opportunity to lead men and women and give back to the country. “How many people get to come out of college and immediately be in a leadership position?" he points out. “You may have 30-40 people under you, and you’re working in an essential job where there’s going to be stress and all kinds of things that will push you and make you a better leader and a better person.”


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xperiencing college at the United States Military Academy at West Point is not for the faint of heart. For starters, over the course of seven, hot summer weeks leading up to the start of freshman year, plebes are thrown into a rigorous physical regimen, otherwise known as Cadet Basic Training, or, more commonly, the “Beast.” No contact with family or friends—read iPhones—is allowed. It is a grueling, methodical induction into a completely new, military lifestyle. Yet, Cathleen Parker ’19 recalls thinking, “This isn’t so bad. I’ve run harder races at Pingry.” A member of the Girls’ Varsity Lacrosse, Cross Country, and Indoor Track & Field Teams—she was the third leg of the 4x800-meter relay team her junior year that smashed the school record and earned a #9 national ranking—Cathleen was, and is, no stranger to physical discomfort. And she drew on her Big Blue athletic experiences those tough weeks during the summer of 2019. “It was hot and difficult, yes, but I was able to put it into perspective. I got through it, and I made some great friends. I was pretty proud of myself,” she recalls. Cathleen’s father was an Air Force ROTC graduate, and both her grandfathers were Naval and Air Force officers. While there is a history of military service in her family, it was not impressed upon her, and no one had a connection to the Army. It wasn’t until her sophomore year at Pingry, when West Point began recruiting her to play lacrosse, that the school appeared on her radar. Her passion for athletics—and lacrosse, in particular—was in part what convinced her to accept their recruitment offer her junior year, becoming the first Pingry female graduate in more than 15 years to attend West Point. Six years ago, the Academy elevated its club lacrosse program to a full-fledged, Division I varsity team, and Cathleen was excited to join a growing, competitive program. The women she has met, from every corner of the country, are impressive people and players, she says. “We were 7-0 last spring before the season ended due to the pandemic. In the span of just a few years we went from being a brand new program to being one of only three teams in our conference to go undefeated during the 2019 season. We also ranked #1 in the nation on draw control percentage. Army is big on ‘win everything,’ and that warrior mentality shines through on our sports team. That really appealed to me.” A four-year starter for the Girls’ Varsity Lacrosse Team at Pingry—and captain her senior year— Cathleen helped lead the team to back-to-back state sectional titles.

It was an exhilarating close to a successful high school career. She was also a National Merit Commended Student and honor roll member every semester of high school. To say she exemplifies the Army work ethic and passion for success, both on the field and off, is no exaggeration. And she says Pingry prepared her well. “West Point feels like a continuation of Pingry in terms of balancing a high level of academics and athletics,” she explains. “I can transition from lacrosse to getting my schoolwork done, compartmentalizing my time. I’m not living the typical college experience, but my days definitely have a similar structure to Pingry that has helped me to transition.” Still, most college freshmen would bristle at the thought of having to wake up before the upperclassmen, not to mention dispose of trash, clean the bathrooms, and maintain silence while outside. For Cathleen, it’s all part of the adventure. “There are a lot of little things you have to get right as a freshman. You’re under a lot of strict rules, but you earn them back as you get older,” she says. What is she most looking forward to? “Being able to leave campus on weekends in civilian clothes.”

Cathleen Parker ’19 and a friend at the end of seven weeks of Cadet Basic Training—known as "the Beast"—before starting her freshman year at West Point.

“Pingry’s Career Day my senior year really helped to solidify my decision to attend West Point. They brought in Becky Murphy Strickland ’98—she played soccer for the Naval Academy. Her story was so incredible, it made me feel much more confident in what I was doing.”

West Point is an engineering school with a strict core curriculum. To date, two of her more unique classes have been History of the Army and a required P.E. class in boxing last year, which proved to be the most challenging: “If you get a concussion and have to drop out, you just have to take it again the next semester.” Upon graduation, with the Army’s 16 branches—from air defense artillery to aviation to armor—the possible paths for cadets are endless. A law major, Cathleen is considering applying to the JAG (Judge Advocate General’s) Corps, which provides legal services to the Army and its soldiers. It would mean fulfilling the normal five-year service commitment after graduation, in addition to a four-year service in JAG after law school. Even before applying to JAG, she could pursue any number of different avenues. While she isn’t certain which direction she’ll take, as she learned at Pingry, she’s confident that she will meet people who will help to point her in the right direction. Pingry always encouraged her to seek out adult mentors she could look up to, she recalls, like her advisor of four years, then-Upper School History Teacher Colleen Kent. West Point prioritizes mentorship, too. “Leaders are so accessible and so eager to teach and mentor you. You’ll see full bird colonels teaching an intro class,” she says. “There’s a lot that I don’t know yet, but having them around me will teach me so much more.” Attending a military academy, where women make up just a quarter of the population, is by no means a simple or typical decision among female high school graduates, much less female graduates of Pingry. But, perhaps in keeping with the very “can do” attitude that made her such a desirable West Point recruit, as she heads into her sophomore year, she doesn’t give herself too much credit. “Anyone deciding between multiple colleges has things they’re not sure about and moments when they’re scared. I don’t think that’s unique to West Point,” she says. “I had an opportunity that very few people are given. I knew that I was up for the challenge. Why shouldn’t I give it my best try?”

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or eight months, from March to October, 2019, Mac Hugin ’13 commanded a platoon of 41 infantry Marines, aged 18 to 32, on joint training missions in Japan and Australia. After more than 60 cumulative days in the field together—eating, sleeping (in full-body bug nets), and training side-by-side in remote, rugged locations, often in the company of curious kangaroos—they formed a bond that's hard to explain, he says. He describes it this way: “Even though we’re in a peacetime situation, I wake up every morning knowing that I need to give everything I possibly can to prepare my guys to be in the most unequal fight imaginable. Our currency is human life.” For a young man who graduated from college just over three years ago, it’s a weighty sensation to bear. But it’s one that he embraces. The fall of his junior year, his father drove down to Princeton University—where Mac graduated with a degree in Economics in 2017—to have lunch with him. As he recalls, they were discussing his future, and he was ruminating on what path he should take. He was considering an internship in finance. But after that lunch, a path suddenly became clear. “I just had this epiphany that finance was not what I really wanted to do. I wanted to join the Marines and be a part of something larger than myself. Waking up every day and having a strong purpose was something I was looking for,” he says So, during the summer between his junior and senior years of college, he traveled to Quantico, Virginia for 10 weeks of Officer Candidate School, an initial assessment

period designed to weed out all but the most committed. He passed, finished his senior year at Princeton, and commissioned as a Marine that June, upon graduation. After six months of grueling basic training, back at Quantico— where he specialized in infantry and earned a broken bone in each foot for his efforts—he was sent to Camp Pendleton, his base for the last two years. Mac cites two individuals as having the biggest influence on his decision to join the Marines. The first is his father, who was an active duty Marine for seven years, and served another seven in the Reserve. By the time Mac and his older brother Robbie ’11 were born, he had left the military for the civilian world, but his experiences and stories were a part of their childhood. “Robbie and I were raised with a pretty strong sense of duty. It was always in the back of my mind that joining the Marines was something I could do,” he explains. The other significant mentor in his life is his former Pingry coach, John “Mags” Magadini, Head Coach of the Boys’ Varsity Ice Hockey Team from 1996-2016, and, himself, a former Marine. “Mags ingrained thousands of valuable life lessons in me during my four years on the team,” he says. “He lit the fire in me for my love of leadership, in general—taking care of the people you’re in charge of, doing everything you possibly can for them. Mags was a prime motivating factor in my decision.” In addition to ice hockey, Mac played soccer and baseball for Big Blue. The camaraderie was perhaps the aspect of his athletic experience at Pingry that he cherished most. He played club hockey in college, but it wasn't the same, he says. In the Marines, that camaraderie came back in spades. “It’s everything I loved about sports, but taking it to the next level, because the consequences are so great.”

“I crave the leadership opportunities in a close-knit, small unit, and being able to be in charge of junior riflemen is one of the greatest honors.”

Mac Hugin ’13 (second from left) with friends in September 2018, his last day of Infantry Officer Course. 36

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Why enter the military?

Mac says he can count on one hand the number of men in his platoon who come from a stable childhood experience. Their backgrounds are eclectic and, in many cases, tough. “But they all have this intrinsic value set and an unspeakable bond. We’re all working towards the same goal.” For Mac, the Marine environment of camaraderie and fraternity in which he thrives exists in yet another, more personal, dimension. His brother Robbie commissioned as a Marine just a few months before him. And he, too, is an infantry officer, based at Camp Pendleton. While they followed a similar timeline in terms of the application process, they arrived at the decision separately. “We didn’t come together and say, “We’re going to do this.’ It just happened,” he explains. The brothers get to see one another fairly regularly when they’re not deployed or off-base on training exercises. Mac says having both a father and a brother to talk to, who understand the experience of being a Marine—which he compares to speaking a foreign language for most civilians—helps tremendously. Last January, Mac was promoted to executive officer (second in command) of a company, which amounts to roughly 220 Marines. This past summer, he spent 40 days in the desert of central California training with them in preparation for an upcoming, seven-month deployment overseas. He owes four years of service. After that, he isn’t sure what his next step will be. But he is savoring the experience. “The lessons I’ve learned I’m super thankful for and just could never get anywhere else,” he says. Just what would he characterize as the biggest lesson so far? “Everything you do has a purpose, and it’s not about you. It’s about the people around you who look to you for support or advice.” He adds, “That’s not unique to the Marines. That’s every relationship you have in life.” But in Marine parlance, it’s known as troop welfare. “Sometimes, as their officer, I have to get their feet wet because they need the training, but I also need to know when to keep their feet dry. It’s setting them up for future success by looking out for their well-being.”

I attended Case Western Reserve University, pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Psychology, and decided to enlist my junior year. I realized I needed more direction before graduating aimlessly and wanted to take the opportunity to travel. The Air Force offers tuition assistance, which pays for me to take classes while working. Current title/deployment duties?

I am currently a Senior Airman (E-4) in the comptroller squadron at Misawa Air Base, in Japan.

Kyra Walker '14 with her then-commander in March 2019. He gave her special recognition for helping a customer.

“The insight I’ve gained from being in the military has been worth any discomfort I’ve experienced.” My title is Resource Advisor for the Fighter Wing Staff Agencies. Essentially, I manage unit budgets and assist them throughout the fiscal year. Japan is amazing! My favorite part is experiencing the language. I studied Japanese in college so it was a dream come true to be able to come here. My least favorite aspect of being here is the isolation, however. In addition to being so far from family and friends back stateside, Misawa, in the north of Japan, is a bit far from major cities Unexpected challenges/surprises? The insight I’ve gained

from being in the military has been worth any discomfort I’ve experienced. I’d enlist again for sure. A small but impactful surprise has been that I'm no longer addressed by my first name. It actually feels weird now to be called by my first name, unless I’m talking to close friends. Pingry’s influence? I can’t say that Pingry had a direct

influence on my decision to join the military; however, before I even started the application process I did as much research as I could, which is definitely a skill I learned at Pingry. I entered the military a lot more prepared than some of my peers as a result. What’s next? Later this year, I’ll be moving back to the

States. After I move, I’ll have a year and a half left in my contract. I currently intend to separate and use my benefits to pursue a Master’s degree in Consumer Psychology.

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ucked away in a small corner of the U.S.S. Bataan— an 844-foot-long amphibious assault ship carrying more than 3,000 sailors and Marines—is a small, dimly lit, room, filled with radios and screens, known as a SCIF (sensitive compartmented information facility). It was here, the ship’s intelligence hub, or “watch floor,” where Michaela Scrudato ’13 worked eight to 12 hours a day, seven days a week, for seven straight months. She was helping her unit to sift through various incoming bits of intelligence and disseminate them as needed—“information fusion,” as the Navy calls it. From December 2019 until this past July, Michaela idled in the seas off the Middle East in a Naval vessel twoand-a-half football fields long, working alongside 30 other members of her team, the Tactical Air Control Squadron (Tacron) Two Two. (Naval Tacron units, of which there are four in the U.S. at present, monitor and control the air space around a vessel.) Internet and phone service were as hard to come by as fresh air. The flight deck was only open to non-pi-

lots, like Michaela, for a short period each day. Besides, she says, when not working their shift, they were usually so tired that napping in their bunks was more appealing than taking in the sunlight. “I’m not going to lie. It was not much fun,” she says. It was her first deployment, and it was supposed to be a run-of-the-mill training mission to Europe. Then, just as the U.S.S. Bataan was about to pull into port in Morocco, Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani, commander of the Quds Force—a designated terrorist organization by the U.S.—was assassinated. Immediately, Michaela’s ship was rerouted to the Gulf of Oman to provide additional support. Shortly thereafter, they transited through the Strait of Hormuz and “loitered” off the coast of Iran for several months. It had all the ingredients of a tough first deployment. Adjusting to being away from family and friends and having limited Internet and phone access are the typ-

“Apply to the Academies. Since I found out about it from a prior Pingry alumna, I try to pass along the torch. . . It’s a good opportunity that often gets overlooked.”

Michaela Scrudato '13 (middle, wearing brown belt) with fellow members of her watch team on the U.S.S. Bataan hours before her return to Virginia Beach.


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**The Pingry Review recognizes that many other young alumni are currently serving (recall the profile of ROTC candidate—now a U.S. Army Officer—Thomas Zusi '16 from the Fall 2020 issue). Please reach out to and let us know who you are!

ical hardships. But to change missions so suddenly introduced another challenge. “The worst part was the not-knowing aspect—we were told one thing one day, and another the next. There were so many what-ifs.” Then, COVID-19 hit, and things got even harder. The U.S.S. Bataan was in the Red Sea when the pandemic struck the Middle East. Ports everywhere were shutting down. “We couldn’t pull in anywhere, so we just floated,” she says. “We went all the way back into the Arabian Gulf and loitered there for a couple of months.” In February, before COVID-19 struck, they spent four days in Bahrain. They didn't see land again until they returned to the U.S. in July. Unlike other Naval vessels that made news, Michaela's was COVID-free throughout her deployment. But that made their eventual disembarkation an odd experience. “We considered ourselves a bubble, and it was weird coming back to everything,” she says. “We didn’t have a normal homecoming—the pier we pulled into in Norfolk, Virginia was completely empty. The moment we disembarked we had to put masks on.” Despite all the challenges, Michaela says her experience was made enjoyable by those she worked with—her watch team—and by the four women she bunked with, to whom she became close. “The crew I worked with made things 100% better. They were troopers,” she says. Helping to keep the mood light and fun after hours of assessing intelligence, her team kept a quote log of their silly sayings and banter, music was a constant, and jokes flowed freely. Michaela’s journey to the Navy began when she was in Grade 8 at Pingry. At a Veteran’s Day assembly in Hauser Auditorium, she remembers feeling captivated by remarks given by Becky Murphy Strickland ’98, a Naval Academy graduate who was a lieutenant at the time. Michaela didn’t know that the military Academies existed, much less what they were about. But Becky’s presentation got her thinking. Then, her older sister, Gabriella ’10, ended up attending the Coast Guard Academy. “I was able to watch her the whole time because I was three years behind. I was really impressed with the fortitude she developed. She was a quiet person, but after her first year at the Academy she was way more ‘you’re not going to push me around,’” she says. “You don’t realize the Academy experience can change a person like that. You think it’s just college. But seeing that change in her, I was very interested.”

The summer between her junior and senior years at Pingry, she attended the Naval Academy’s summer seminar program—a sneak peek at life in the Academy. She loved it. Shortly thereafter, she applied, was accepted, and made her way to Annapolis. She joined Josh King ’12, who was accepted the year before and helped to pave the way. Before Josh, by her recollection, it had been at least five years since a Pingry graduate had attended any Academy. Most of her friends were very supportive; some were surprised. “Some people would describe me as a girly girl, so they were wondering what I was doing. People always think you can’t be a girl in the military,” she says. She remembers her then-physics teacher—who has since retired from Pingry—Dr. Ronalee Newman, as being one of her biggest supporters. A lieutenant junior grade, Michaela has been a Tacron Two Two intelligence officer, stationed at Little Creek, in Virginia Beach, for the last two years. She is committed to serving another three years, and will likely opt for a “shore tour” next, possibly with the National Reconnaissance Office outside of Washington, D.C. (she is particularly interested in how satellites inform intelligence work). When her tour is over, she plans to leave the military for medical school. She would like a family eventually, and deploying while leaving children behind—something she has witnessed with fellow officers—is heartbreaking, she says. “The Navy is definitely a lifestyle. For women, it’s hard. You have to really plan your life because the Navy is going to expect certain milestones from you. You have to be cognizant if you want a family—it can be difficult to do it so that the Navy is happy as well.” She is happy, if realistic, about her decision to attend the Academy and join the Navy. “I think a lot of accounts are sugar-coated. I don’t want to lie to someone. You’ll hate the Academy lifestyle a lot of the time, but at the same time, I don’t want people to think that it won’t be worth it, if it’s really what you want to do. It’s an adventure,” she says. “There are so many things I’ve gotten to do that I never would have if I hadn’t gone into the military. I’ve traveled so much.” COVID-19 limited the number of countries she was able to visit on her deployment, but the oceans and seas, alone, that she set her eyes on were memorable. “I can tell you that the water of the Caribbean is beautiful. The Arabian Gulf, not so much. I’ve been afforded the opportunity to go on a sub, fly a T-6B Texan II, and I’ve gotten a jet ride off a carrier. I’ve made lifelong friends and learned not to be afraid to take chances.”

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Spring Athletics Tribute In early May, when the pandemic was still raging and it was clear that Pingry students would not reunite for the last stretch of the 2019-20 school year, much less the spring athletics season, Director of Athletics and Community Wellness Carter Abbott shared the following tribute.

“Spring is usually a time of excitement on campus: the crack of a baseball bat, the roar of the crowd, the whoosh of a can of tennis balls being opened, the smell of fresh-cut grass. However, this spring, the fields are empty, the track has no runners, the fans are gone. COVID-19 has ended our seasons—records remain unbroken, championships remain unclaimed, and the promise of spring is unrealized. With the season over, I want to thank all of the coaches, athletes, and supporters for all of their hard work and preparation for the season. Please know that Pingry pride is alive and well, and that Pingry athletics will come back, stronger than ever.”

To view the video tribute, see

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Pride on 3! You took the helm of the Girls’ Varsity Soccer Team in the fall of 2016, after serving as head coach of the JV team for two years. In the fall of 2019, the team (17-5) secured its second straight Non-Public A state title, earning a #8 state ranking. Did you envision this level of success so quickly when you joined the team?

I never envisioned being a varsity head coach again! I came to Pingry with the idea of being the fun JV coach under [then-Head Coach] Andrew Egginton. When he decided to resign, the opportunity to lead a program again presented itself, and the rest is history. The prestige of Pingry’s girls’ soccer program and its level of excellence and intensity were very clear to me. I knew that we would be a contender for counties, conference, and states, but when I actually entered preseason that first year in 2016, particularly seeing the freshmen, I knew the group was going to be really special. What led to the team’s success? The “special sauce”

has always been a serious dedication to the program. These kids have a hunger for success and a willingness to do whatever it takes to get there. When we coupled that with our talent and our personalities, it created this really awesome dynamic. That’s not to say that we haven’t had our ups and downs. But it really is the perseverance through those struggles that makes Pingry kids in general—and our soccer players in particular—so special. Last fall was the program’s 10th state title, so the legacy of the team is also a big part of our success. Instead of feeling intimidated, the kids are excited to rise to the challenge and be a part of the next group of champions. And this positive attitude is what makes a winning team. Adjunct coaches—those who aren’t Pingry faculty but nevertheless contribute significantly to the life of the School—put in a great deal of time and energy with student athletes. What do you enjoy most about coaching at Pingry? I have a master’s degree in Educa-

tion, and I began my career as both a high school teacher and coach, and then went on to coach collegiately. There’s no topic I love teaching more than the topic of life, and soccer—sports in general—is reflective of


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life. I ended up getting out of public school teaching and subsequently college coaching because there was a time when I felt like I wasn’t able to help kids truly be better and fulfill their potential. And I didn’t want to teach and coach if I couldn’t do that. But when I got involved in the Pingry program, even at the JV level, I got involved in something that made me feel alive again. One of the reasons I love Pingry is that the culture allows me to hold high standards, hold kids accountable, and show them they are capable of amazing things. And these kids really respond to those life lessons. They engage in life and buy in, and rise to the challenge. Coaching at Pingry has made me love soccer again. Your first year out of the University of Connecticut, where you helped your team to the NCAA National Championship finals your freshman year, you were drafted by the first women’s professional soccer league, the Bay Area Cyber Rays. A preseason injury kept you on the sidelines as the team went on to clinch the national title later that season. What did you learn from the experience, and how did it shape your trajectory? I do have a bit of regret . . . I decided after rehab-

bing from my injury that I should see it as a sign to go back to school and take a different path. My 40-year-old self now says I should have returned to the team. When you’re in your early 20s, you have so much life and success ahead of you athletically. I just couldn’t see it at the time. Instead of dwelling on it negatively, the experience has become a teachable moment, and has fueled my passion for helping kids understand that injuries are just a blip. You can still get back and play. Don’t let challenges define your dreams. I want kids to see that if you work hard, focus, and strive for your dreams, success will come in its most incredible forms, even if it takes some failure first. In July, the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA) announced a shortened season, beginning October 1, due to the pandemic. (The Pingry Review goes to press in late October, but as of this writing, their call had not changed.) What was your mindset as you approached the season? I am a glass-


Get the next one! It’s not about the mess up—it’s about where you go from there.

Don’t be afraid to fail big! Failure is so important to success.

Go together! Together we are stronger and better.

Do the little things! Little things add up to big things and are often what matter most.

“As a coach, my job isn’t to teach student athletes what or how to think, but how to come up with creative solutions of their own.”

half-full person, but I’m also realistic. I’m so thankful we are getting half a season. Things could be far worse. All I wanted for these kids—seniors especially—was for them to have a season, whatever it looked like. Our experiences are as good or bad as we make them. What’s been awesome to see is that these kids had their first summer session practice in late July, and they were saying, “Thank goodness we have part of a season!” That positivity was incredible. Now we’re figuring out how to make what we’ve been given the most amazing experience we can. I’ve told them to hope for the best and plan for the worst and just be willing to be flexible because things are fluid. Whatever comes, we will make it as amazing and memorable as possible.

What do you most want Pingry girls to take away from their time with you? Vigor, enthusiasm, and excitement

for life and its challenges. I want them to come away knowing that life is hard; that is a fact. But that they are stronger, they are more resilient, and they can overcome any challenge. I want them to go into college knowing that it will be difficult, but that they can do it. I want them to be real, be authentic, and look challenge in the eyes. Whatever they’re going through in life, just tackle it and go forward. Our pregame cheer is “Pride on 3 . . . 1,2,3, PRIDE!” And living life this way will make them proud.

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On the Arts DR AMA

The Show Goes On, Outdoors Pingry’s Drama Department originally faced a choice this fall: live stream the Fall Play, which would mean the absence of a live audience, or move the show outdoors to give the actors an audience and the community a chance to attend. As it turns out, the show, John Cariani’s Almost, Maine, was streamed and moved al fresco! “I was excited because this was a new experience, not just for [the teachers], but for the kids,” says Drama Department Chair Stephanie Romankow. She even checked with former Drama Department Chair Al Romano to see if Pingry had mounted outdoor theater in the past. As far as they know, this was Pingry’s first venture. For their vision of an outdoor theater, Mrs. Romankow and Drama Production Designer Joseph Napolitano were inspired by Central Park’s open-air Delacorte Theater and companies that have produced outdoor-only shows that made use of lakes and other natural resources for Titanic, Into the Woods, and Carousel, to name a few. “The key to site-specific work is using the landscape— the location—to tell the story, and that works really well with Almost, Maine because the plot has a lot of outdoor

Pingry’s outdoor production, at the Pop-Up Amphitheatre, of Almost, Maine.


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spaces,” says Mr. Napolitano, who has worked on outdoor productions. Almost, Maine explores love and loss in a series of short scenes that require only two or three actors per scene, ideal for social distancing and other safety protocols. Rehearsals took place primarily outdoors with students wearing masks, while a tech crew of at least 16 students constructed the outdoor stage and set. The production was staged at the Pop-Up Amphitheatre behind the Upper School building (in the Student Village, created over the summer as extra outdoor space), with one tent for a green room and two tents for the audience. “At a time when live theatre in the U.S. is largely shut down and most audiences are virtual, we presented a fully rendered piece, an approach that sets Pingry’s Drama Department apart from other programs,” Mr. Napolitano says. “After speaking with the cast and crew, I know that our drama students were excited (and grateful!) to be able to perform again in front of a live audience. We have developed new ways to deliver our program that are consistently rigorous in all aspects, performance and technical, to what we’ve offered in previous years.”


Lower School students and teachers worked on a community-based art/ Decisions project in September, making beaded straps for their masks. They personalized their colors and patterns and added their names and a mantra, such as “ready,” “staying focused,” and “positive.”

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On the Arts MUS IC

Taking Note of Arrangements

Two members of the Balladeers, Lauren Drzala ’21 and Sophia Lewis ’22, have been working on song arrangements—challenging, but enjoyable, endeavors that rely on Noteflight (music notation software). Lauren outlines her basic process . . .

Look up the piano arrangement and convert each part into singing ranges.

Listen to the original song to see what the piano arrangement omitted.

“I need to fit everything in there so it sounds as close to the original as possible, but at the same Add these time, I try missing to make it elements. my own.” —LAUREN DRZALA ’21

Sophia outlines her basic process . . .

Listen to the song multiple times to determine the number of voice parts.

Listen for the chords, write them out, and try to find patterns. Write the solo part, using an existing arrangement or trial and error to determine the rhythm.


Musical Glasses During remote learning this spring, fourth-grade students had fun with “musical glasses.” Using water in glasses or glass jars, and tapping with a metal spoon, they created their own musical instruments and discovered that the level of the water affects the pitch. Students had fun exploring different sounds and playing familiar melodies.


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Add the lyrics for the voice parts. Determine the rhythm and notes for each voice part while making sure the parts sound good together.

True Blue Spotlight


Vanessa Chandis ’98 What inspires you about Pingry today?

What drew me to Pingry when I was deciding on a high school to attend is the same thing that inspires me about Pingry today. Pingry helps develop well-rounded students who are grounded by a sense of honesty and honor, and who put others first. Pingry fosters an environment where students are not pigeon-holed into one identity or excelling at only one activity. The straight-A student can also be a star athlete, perform in the school play, or sing in Glee Club. The School provides opportunities and platforms for students to grow and learn in many capacities, which enables them to have a variety of experiences and exposure to diverse people and viewpoints. And, through its Honor Code and community [and civic engagement] requirement, Pingry encourages students to take pride in their work, act with integrity, and think beyond oneself. The standards to which Pingry holds its students as members of the community help set the standard by which students conduct themselves outside of Pingry.

“Pingry helps develop wellrounded students who are grounded by a sense of honesty and honor, and who put others first.”

What is your fondest Pingry memory?

I have many fond memories from my four years at Pingry, but the parking lot hangouts before sports practices stand out the most. Despite having locker rooms, many of us would quickly change into our sports clothes in our cars and spend the rest of the time beforehand blasting music from our cars (maybe singing along!), talking and joking around, making plans for the weekend, and generally having a good time. I remember the feeling of camaraderie and school spirit, and I always smile when I think back on those afternoons. What was your most difficult Pingry class?

Chemistry with Dr. Parv. I wanted to be a doctor until I took her class! For whatever reason, the subject just did not click in my brain. The best grade I got in that class was for something entirely unrelated to chemical formulas or atoms or bonds . . . it was the mole project. We were tasked with creatively explaining what a mole (unit of measurement) was, and I turned it into an arts and crafts project by making a papier-mâché mole (the animal)!


Those who have given to The Pingry Fund for 10 or more consecutive years

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“We will deliver Pingry, anywhere. We will be together, everywhere.” —MATT LEVINSON, HEAD OF SCHOOL The Pingry Fund supports and enhances every aspect of the Pingry experience, including the arts, athletics, faculty professional growth, technology and innovation, and financial aid. Please make your gift online at or with the reply envelope included in this magazine. For more information, please contact Jane Hoffman ’94, P ’26, ’27, ’28, Director of Annual Giving and Community Relations, at or 908-647-5555, ext. 1222.


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Pingry On the Road

For more information, please contact Cait Finneran, Associate Director of Alumni Relations and Special Events, at or 908-647-5555, ext. 1285.

Join us on a virtual road trip across America. This will be a terrific opportunity for the Pingry community to connect with fellow alumni and learn about how the School has adapted during these unprecedented times. Pingry administration, faculty, staff, and students will be featured to discuss how Pingry is innovating and meeting the challenge in this new educational environment. Please check our social media pages and your email for more information! SAVE THE DATE! West Coast and Pacific Northwest – Wednesday, November 18 New England – Wednesday, January 13 Florida and Southern States – Wednesday, February 17 New York and New Jersey – Wednesday, March 24 Mid-Atlantic States – Tuesday, April 20

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Class Notes S HA RE YOUR NEWS Submit your Class Note at, or mail it to Greg Waxberg ‘96, Editor of The Pingry Review, The Pingry School, 131 Martinsville Road, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920.



KEN HANF writes, “For what it’s worth, I am alive and well in Sitges, on the coast of Spain below Barcelona.”

BOB DWYER writes, “The first words of today’s [June 21] sermon (live streamed on Facebook) at my parish church in Manhattan: ‘The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.’ I felt like I was back in the North Avenue chapel.”

1962 HARRY MOSER and his Reshoring Initiative are collaborating with the Association for Manufacturing Excellence (AME) to promote LeanShoringTM in which organizations can reduce domestic manufacturing costs by eliminating waste in their processes, including anything that does not provide value to the customer. In an article on the AME website, Harry said, “We are committed to changing the sourcing paradigm from ‘offshored is cheaper’ to ‘local reduces the total cost of ownership.’” In June, he participated in a Q&A with Today’s Medical Developments about how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the reshoring effort and supply chains, especially for medical products. “When the COVID-19 pandemic ends,” he said, “America’s global supply chain must be replaced with local and national sourcing, but it won’t just be in health care. Other leading industries of focus include transportation equipment, appliances, plastic and rubber products, fabricated metal products, electronics, and apparel.” Later in the interview, he added, “When people reshore, they accept a higher U.S. cost, but reduction in overhead (inventory, travel, international property, etc.).” Harry urges any alumni who might influence company sourcing decisions to contact him for help at


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1967 GLENN HERRICK writes, “After graduating from Gordon College in Wenham, MA, my wife, Ruth, and I settled in Wenham, MA where I started a 30-year career at BayBank (now part of the Bank of America system). My wife, who also graduated from Gordon, was a teacher at the Hamilton-Wenham Regional Schools for 34 years. Over the years, I served the Town of Wenham in various capacities: Recreation Board and Finance Committee member as well as two three-year terms as a Selectman. I also was a member of the Wenham Auxiliary Police for many years. I coached a variety of youth and travel team sports, including baseball and soccer while, over time, serving as President of the local Little League, Youth Soccer, and Youth Hockey Organizations. With two children active in competitive swimming, I became a certified official and also served as a board member of New England USA Swimming. In 2007, we retired and relocated to a small Maine town called Old Town. We have a son, Timothy, who lives with his family in Hamilton, MA, and our daughter, Susan, lives near us here in Old Town with her family. Life is good. We love Maine!”

John Roll ‘73 has launched a new television series.

1973 JOHN ROLL recently launched a new 30-minute television series, Carolina Home Today, on WMBF in Myrtle Beach, SC. “After 40 years in the communications industry,” John writes, “it was time to take my show on the road.” He teamed up with his former WTNH (New Haven, CT) colleague Nancy Aborn Wuennemann for this series that tells compelling stories about home service providers in coastal South Carolina. Capitalizing on the area’s recent growth, each show provides a fast-paced, entertaining, and informative look at home trends, new home technology, and best practices in home continued on page 53


A Surprise Blessing CO M P I LE D BY LI N DSAY LI OTTA FORN E SS ’ 80, P ’ 11, ’ 14

The Class of 1980 Reunion Committee began to plan a terrific weekend of events both on and off the Pingry Campus in Basking Ridge, NJ. COVID-19 had other plans. Our class has lost a parent to the disease, and many of our offspring have missed the end of their high school or college senior years and graduation ceremonies. Despite the disruption, the committee decided to plow ahead with a Zoom gathering on Saturday, May 16. We hoped for a decent showing—25 classmates, perhaps, for about a one-hour call. What we were blessed with was a three-hour-plus call with more than 55 people, including a handful of teachers. Here’s what we learned:

> Everyone hopes that we can reconvene in person next year, sharing the year with the Class of 1981.

> Perhaps we need to include a Zoom activity again next year, to include those who will find themselves unable to travel.

> The years have melted away and respect is abundant: re-

spect for those who have chosen service in their professional or volunteer lives, respect for those who have forged unusual paths to happiness and self-enlightenment, and RESPECT for our Pingry teachers. Teachers actually wanted to hear from us! We enjoyed the company of Peter Cowen (English), Steven Feder (French), Sharon Pastore (Math), Kevin Rooney (Middle School English), and Dean Sluyter (English). Given the country day format, these excellent teachers also coached, counseled, directed artistic endeavors, led overseas student trips, and more. JEFF ROCKS updated us on his water truck–related business and home location of Hickory, NC, but more importantly told us the great story of how Kevin Rooney saved a local private school. As the story goes, Jeff was invited to someone’s home to meet the newly selected Headmaster, one who not only needed to fill a vacancy, but who needed to help further create a young school and lead it into the future. Upon his arrival, Jeff saw this “outsider in a blazer and tie” who he then looked in the eye and said, “Mr. Rooney?” to Kevin’s “Mr. Rocks?” response! Kevin is credited with bringing “Pingry” quality and systems to this school and building a foundation for the school’s future success. Partially due to Kevin’s involvement, Jeff became a member of the school board and later its Chairman, making him Kevin’s boss for a short time! JACK CORRADI—now known on the airwaves and professionally as Jack Rabid—began his career in music and journalism while still at Pingry. Now a married dad of an 8- and 12-year old, Jack parlayed his many student trips into New York City into the production of The Big Takeover bi-annual music magazine, music radio work, professional musician,

and more. His story of Peter Cowen’s dedication is both touching and not unusual in Pingry lore. Jack explains that he arrived at Pingry from Summit Junior High and thought he knew how to write. Peter worked with Jack for many days from 3:00 p.m. on, and Jack credits his abilities today to that attention and patience. This sentiment was echoed by many, citing examples of Kevin Rooney’s work with Jon Vigman, Steven Feder’s introduction of language and culture (Mark Diamond), and Sharon Pastore’s ability to make math understandable. TODD EISENBUD, from Miami, FL, where he lives with his wife (and teenage sweetheart), singled out Dean Sluyter for his book, Fearless, which Todd (and I) have given to friends and colleagues for its wonderful guidance. This thanks began a raucous remembrance of Dean’s, telling us about Steven Feder’s second calling as a realtor. Tied to this story, AMY EHRLICH PESKIN related her family’s very close connections to Steven Feder as well. Steven sold Dean his first house and counseled both the Sluyters and some Ehrlich children on the merits of DIY home improvement. Steven’s sales are credited with getting some Pingry teachers into the home ownership realm in communities that were being gentrified, thus helping provide homes as well as sound investments. Steven now lives in Fort Lauderdale, FL with his wife and two sets of twins—one 18 years old and the other 8 years old! One of our AFS classmates was on the call! IMMA GUITART PERARNAU called in from Valencia, Spain and encouraged all to stay in touch with her once travel resumes. Imma is a travel agent and has had to live with coronavirus restrictions longer than any of us. She happily reported that Spain is beginning to re-open. We are so glad that Imma stayed up so late to celebrate! Since storytelling would make this a novella, most of the remaining info is provided in bullet form. We had a few folks on the call who could not stay long enough to update everyone. They are: Marston Allen, Tom Ferry, Fred Hnat, Bart Zanelli, Greg Hockman, Paul Crooker, Scott Corwin, John Baxley, Lynn Apruzzese Tetrault, and Mark Payne. We missed hearing from you! STEVEN BARG is retired as a Partner from Goldman Sachs, living in CT. “Life is good.” JOHN BENT is an ENT in Bronxville, NY, working in an ICU during the pandemic. Thank you for your service, John! Living almost adjacent to the Short Hills Campus, STEVE BRISGEL and his wife, like a few of us, have adult children “home again” during the pandemic.

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Class Notes CLASS OF 1980

CLIFF BRODER is happy in New Jersey with his family, all healthy and well. JAN BROWN called in from Maryland and is enjoying this “home time” with her young daughter. Jan worked for Disney for 11 years; that would be interesting to hear more about! KYLE COLEMAN lives with her wife, Linda, in Nutley, NJ and had photos to share from our teen years! PAUL DENNISON worked for many years in Washington, D.C. with public agencies and is now happily back in New Jersey, where he’s active with the arts and other non-profit interests. COPELAND ESCHENLAUER is in Minnesota and loving the professor life! KAREN FAHERTY lives with her husband and quarantining kids at the Jersey Shore where she works as a psychologist in private practice. A member of the Reunion Committee, JOSH GRADWOHL is living in Bucks County, PA and still working for the NJ Department of Environmental Protection. Josh is also active with Friends of the Delaware Canal and helps the group with carpentry. A member of the Reunion Committee, HERB GRICE is living in New Jersey, working in IT, but also doing a great deal of community work for a shelter in Newark, NJ. If you are interested in helping Herb’s efforts gathering blankets, coats, or food, you can reach Herb at DOROTHY HARBECK is an immigration judge and an adjunct professor at two law schools, Columbia and Rutgers. Dorothy and her wife live near the Jersey Shore, not too far from where she grew up! BOB KAUFMAN works for McCormick Spices in Maryland, and there were requests for him to bring spices to our next reunion!

JENNI KNIGHT lives in Vermont and teaches reading to young children—a challenge any day, but especially in an online format. Although it is challenging, they are incredibly resilient!

GINNY MEBANE RADER called in from Menlo Park, CA, which sounded like it was a “bit ahead” of New Jersey in the mitigation of COVID-19.

JIM KOVACS is a Pingry parent and really enjoyed seeing teachers on our call.

BRAD ROTH is a Professor of Political Science and Law at Wayne State University in Detroit, MI, and the author of books and journal articles about international law.

NEIL KULICK liked being a lawyer, but truly loves being an English teacher. ROB KUSHEN, previously an attorney with Human Rights Watch, enjoys “helping wealthy people give their money away.” Rob and his wife are Pingry parents. SUSAN FOTI McCLANAHAN is in mental health services and has recently returned to doing more direct clinical work, which is a switch from her former type of practice. Susan and her husband recently purchased a vacation spot in the Denver, CO area, so she’s looking to re-connect with Pingry people there as well. MAUREEN KELLY McLAUGHLIN and MIKE McLAUGHLIN were both on our call, from Basking Ridge, NJ where they live very close to campus. Both have been Pingry parents, to Connor ’12 and Lauren ’15. We send our condolences to them both on the loss of Mrs. McLaughlin (Pingry Teacher Emeritus, Grade 4) from COVID-19. MICHAEL MIYAZAKI called in from Washington, D.C. where he participates in the arts when not at work. Michael and his husband are looking forward to a retirement in Palm Springs, CA in the not-so-distant future. DAVID PERLMUTTER lives in Ridgefield CT, having recently moved from Chappaqua after 25 years. He has four children, three of whom are in college, and the other who graduated in 2016 now lives in Medellin. David works in commercial real estate and has a real estate technology start-up. ROBIN POLLACK is happily retired after 35 years of teaching regular and special education. She is looking forward to traveling and fun once COVID disappears! SUSAN QUINN is Director of the Ocean County Library System in Ocean County, NJ. The system has 21 branches and 500 staff, so Susan has quite the job as New Jersey re-opens services.


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JIM “CHARLIE” SCHAEFER retired from politics and is still involved in banking. Charlie and his wife live in the Bahamas and New York City. MARC SOMNOLET and his wife live in his childhood home in Westfield, NJ. They often travel to France and Mexico to see their families (his sister Karine ’82 lives in Paris). Both daughters are grown—one in New York City and one in Miami. Marc retired from 30-plus years in consumer products marketing and is an independent advisor to start-ups and an adjunct professor at NYU, which he loves! A Reunion Committee member, DAVID STANTON lives in New Jersey and works in marketing. He stays in touch with Dean Sluyter and often attends meditation sessions with Dean in person and online. JIM “UBI” WARE (the Ubi moniker is from a Latin class–inspired joke) is a neurologist in the Princeton, NJ area. Jim really loves his work and practices with Mark McLaughlin ’83. Jim also continues to stay involved with wrestling. MARK WILF works with his family’s real estate company and the Minnesota Vikings. The Wilfs have been generous to Pingry and other non-profits as well. BOB WITSENHAUSEN is a recording engineer in New Mexico. It was wonderful to see Bob after many years! GAEL AMABILE ZIEMER lives in the Twin Cities of Minnesota and is in the mental health profession. Gael and her husband enjoy the arts and culture that Minneapolis/ St. Paul have to offer.

1993 JENNIFER ALESSANDRA, Chief People Officer at Frontdoor and a former Academic All-American springboard and platform diver at USC, spoke at TEDx Memphis in February, delivering a speech titled “The Danger of Participation Trophies.” Having grown up as a competitive athlete, she recalls a time when a trophy was reserved for “top-level performance, mastering a skill—you know, victory,” whereas many of today’s children are receiving participation trophies that she feels are skewing their ability to differentiate between participation and achievement. Acknowledging that these trophies are intended to serve as positive reinforcement and to reward something other than winning, Jennifer still believes that “for rewards to work, they need to be earned” and that, “in an attempt to spare children the hurt that comes from failure, participation trophies rob kids of learning by losing.” Emphasizing that achievement, not empty praise, leads to self-esteem, she recommends that people practice losing and failing gracefully; practice reflection and build self-awareness, focusing on personal account-


building. “It’s an infomercial on steroids,” according to John. He retired from Fox61 News (Hartford, CT) in April 2020 and is enjoying spending time at home in Hamden, CT with his wife, Paula, and their two daughters and two granddaughters.

Jennifer Alessandra ‘93 speaking at TEDx Memphis about “The Danger of Participation Trophies.”

ability; and practice giving and receiving feedback so people can improve their skills.

1997 CATHERINE PFAFFENROTH and her husband David Higgs welcomed a son, Samuel, in January.

1998 MELANIE NAKAGAWA, Director of Climate Strategy at Princeville Capital, has been elected to the Board of Directors of Advanced Energy Economy Institute (AEE Institute), which raises awareness of the public benefits and opportunities of advanced energy. It is affiliated with AEE, a national association of businesses that make energy secure, clean, and affordable. In a press release, Melanie said, “The transition to secure, clean, afford-

Samuel, son of Catherine Pfaffenroth ’97.

able advanced energy requires both private investment and public leadership. AEE Institute has so much to offer decision makers in both realms, and I am happy to help in this effort.” At Princeville Capital, Melanie leads climate and sustainability investment strategy to invest in global companies delivering transformative technology solutions to climate change. Previously, she was Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Transformation at the U.S. Department of State.

1999 CAROLINE DIEMAR is the new Executive Director of Girls on the Run of NOVA (Northern Virginia), one of the largest independent affiliates of Girls on the Run International, a program for 8- to 13-year-old girls that promotes empowerment by teaching life skills.

Front row: Chris Franklin ‘96, Colin Bennett ‘96, and Thomas Diemar ‘96, P ‘24. Back row: Maggie Franklin, Jaclyn Bennett, and Lauren Gruel Diemar ‘96, P ‘24.

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Class Notes

Lance Lin ’99, right, and Jared Levan during their wedding weekend in Napa.

According to a press release, Caroline has a wealth of experience advocating for the well-being of children. Prior to accepting this role, she served as a Director at Polaris, where she oversaw their National Human Trafficking Hotline. Caroline holds a B.A in Sociology from Duke University and an M.S. from Bank Street College of Education. “I am truly honored to be part of an organization that is transforming young girls’ lives and equipping them to thrive as they navigate life’s social pressures and challenges,” she said in the release. LANCE LIN married Jared Levan on April 30, 2019 at City Hall in San Francisco. A few days later, they celebrated with a wedding weekend in Napa—the subject of a story


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and slideshow in Vogue this past June. The senior manager of communications at Apple, Lance has managed public relations for the fashion industry (working at Ralph Lauren and J. Crew) and was Fashion Editor at GQ magazine. His husband is an account manager at Impossible Foods, a food tech startup.

2006 ZACK CORDERO writes, “After four years on the faculty at Rice University, I’ve moved back north to join the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at MIT, where I’ll be working on additive manufacturing of novel materials and structures for spacecraft, such as shielding against micrometeoroids and orbital debris. My wife Margaret

and I have two young kids, Phoebe and Will, and we’re looking forward to being within driving distance of family. I’m always grateful for the Pingry teachers who encouraged my interest in science and who helped me hone my communication skills.”

2009 ANDREW BABBITT married Colleen Murphy on August 31, 2019 in Peapack-Gladstone, NJ. Pictured are Ian Martin-Katz ’09, Daniel Elkind ’09, Andrew Weinstock ’09, Brendan Burgdorf ’09, Matt Rybak ’09, Colleen Murphy Babbitt, Andrew Babbitt ’09, Giancarlo Riotto ’09, Conor Starr ’09, Cory Babcock ’09, Matthew Fechter ’09, Abigail DiGiorgio ’22, and Austin Lan ’07.

Wool: A New Movement in Home Insulation BY ANDREW LEGGE ’94, PETER BLANCHARD ’95, AND PHILIP WALSH ’93

Did you know you could insulate your house with wool? Thanks to Andrew Legge ’94, Peter Blanchard ’95, and Philip Walsh ’93, more and more people are learning that efficient home construction can be done with natural and sustainable materials. Their company Havelock Wool is at the forefront of this movement. Founded by Andrew in 2014 to address growing consumer demand for high-performance, but also healthy-building, materials, Havelock Wool is steadily gaining more market share in the massive home insulation market. The idea behind the company came as Andrew, who worked in southeast Asia for six years, became more familiar with the wool industry in New Zealand and the widespread applications of wool. “There seemed to be a glaring disparity between available products in the insulation market versus consumer demand for healthy, high-performance ones,” he says. “Wool’s properties as a natural insulator had the potential to fill the void, and extensive conversation with industry practitioners made it clear it was the right product for the market.” A comparison to the whole and organic food movement sheds light on what is happening with emerging interests in healthy building. As awareness increases around the environmental impact of building materials, consumers are more interested in options that are healthy for them, their home, and the planet. And as it turns out, sheep’s wool is an excellent home insulator, having evolved in nature’s R&D department for thousands of years. Not only does it have tremendous insulative properties, but it manages moisture and improves indoor air quality, something the mainstream insulation products cannot do (plus, it’s fire resistant and mold resistant, and greatly reduces sound transfer). Further, wool insulation’s carbon footprint is negligible. Wool is a natural byproduct of the lamb industry, and its manufacturing process is not carbon intensive, especially when compared to fiberglass, mineral wool, and spray foam. Hence, Havelock’s core value proposition: to make natural, high-performance insulation. Havelock sources raw material from New Zealand because of the country’s abundant, consistent supply as well as its high standard in animal husbandry. As Andrew says, “New Zealand is the most sophisticated wool market, and that allows us to get the wool we want. Further, the kiwis are the best cleaners of wool in the world, and that’s really important because it guarantees a consistent, reliable, high-quality wool product.” Production occurs in Nevada.

The early days of Havelock Wool saw a struggle to convince builders and architects of the viability of the product and, still today, the “trade” is reluctant compared to the average homeowner. As a result, Havelock Wool brings its story directly to the end user through marketing efforts. This differentiated strategy is one of the key drivers behind the company’s growth. As Andrew puts it, “We continue to advocate for informed building material decisions and, as we like to say, ‘Don’t let your builder or architect be in charge of your health.’” As the company grew, Peter Blanchard ’95 joined as a Director of Finance. With an M.B.A. in Sustainable Management and 10 years in finance, he has helped form the company’s financial strategy with an eye toward sustainable stewardship. And just last year, Philip Walsh ’93 joined as Head of Marketing. After a long career in finance, he felt compelled to join a company whose sole mission was not profit driven. For more information, please visit

Andrew Legge ’94 in the Havelock Wool plant.

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Class Notes

Andrew Babbitt ’09 and Colleen Murphy Babbitt on their wedding day.


Connor McLaughlin ’12 at Drexel University College of Medicine in May.

CONNOR McLAUGHLIN received his Doctor of Medicine degree from Drexel University College of Medicine (DUCOM) in Philadelphia on May 15. He earned several accolades from the medical school, including the Department of Medicine Award for clinical excellence in medicine as well as the Elise Reid Carrington Prize, which honors a graduating senior who has demonstrated a high level of accomplishment, outstanding leadership, and service to the student body. He also graduated as a member of the DUCOM Chapter of the Arnold P. Gold Foundation’s Gold Humanism Honor Society. He will continue his medical training in Philadelphia at his first-choice internal medicine residency program: Thomas Jefferson University Hospital.

2013 MICHAEL ARROM was highlighted in a September 30 story in American Songwriter for his work as a record producer for Haylee Joe’s “Norman Bates,” the debut single from her new Halloween-themed EP Nightmare.


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In the article, Michael says he had the fun challenge of incorporating elements of Bernard Herrmann’s score from Psycho “in ways that sounded timeless and authentic, yet refreshing.”

2016 JAMES BARKER, co-captain of Haverford College’s Men’s Outdoor Track and Field Team this past spring, was named to the 2020 Centennial Conference Men’s Outdoor Track & Field All-Sportsmanship Team, which recognizes student-athletes who exemplify the values of respect, fairness, civility, honesty, and responsibility both on and off the field or playing surface. James also earned the honor for the indoor 2019-20 season. He was also named Second Team All-Centennial Conference following the 2019 indoor season, as he was part of a 4x800 meter relay squad that finished second, earning silver medals at the conference meet in Lancaster—the 7:59.7 time was the ninth-fastest in program history and only the fifth sub-eight minute showing this decade.

A member of Princeton University’s Class of 2020, JACKSON ARTIS was elected this spring—from a field of 28 candidates—to serve a four-year term as a Young Alumni Trustee (YAT) on Princeton’s Board of Trustees (to ensure that the board always includes four members with recent experience as undergraduates, one student in the graduating class is chosen to serve a four-year term). The Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering major, who also has certificates in Chinese Language Studies and Robotics and Intelligent Systems, is working at AGI, a Pennsylvania-based software company that works in aerospace, defense, and telecommunications. He is also pursuing a Master’s degree in Space Systems Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. Here, he shares why he sought the YAT role and what he hopes to accomplish: “I decided to run for this position to try and help improve Princeton on behalf of those who have no desire to stay involved with the university as a result of their negative experiences. As a result of my experience as a Pingry lifer, the culture of Old Northeastern Private Schools was familiar. This familiarity prevented the cultural challenges and hardships of a school like Princeton from catching me off guard, and so I was able to spend most of my time enjoying what the institution had to offer. Some of my best friends, however, did not have that same familiarity, and so spent a lot of their time adjusting to those same cultural challenges. Rightfully so, they are not too invested in spending more time and energy trying to make changes to an environment that harmed them. While a lot of the issues they faced are emblematic of old, elite schools in America, some of them were Princeton-specific. To me, it felt selfish and irresponsible to passively acknowledge that I had been able to enjoy my time while my friends did not simply because of the circumstances of where and when I was born. I felt like I should invest my time after graduating working to help bring the voices and experiences I had heard to the table in order to help make Princeton a more inclusive space. As a Young Alumni Trustee (YAT), I have the same privileges and responsibilities as all of the other Board members. What’s been really reassuring and encouraging to learn is that official privileges and responsibilities of YATs are the same in practice as they are on paper. YATs and non-YATs alike have all made it clear that my presence on the Board is appreciated and valued. I am not there as a token or as an appeasement to the current student body and newest alumni. In addition to being part of two sub-committees—Student Life/Health/Athletics and Public Affairs—I will also be present for and contribute to meetings of the full Board, which take place five times a year and during which we discuss broader school issues. Similar to the other Trustees, I am expected to read briefings, data, and analysis, as well offer insight and informed opinions about whatever is being discussed. Even during this short period of time that I’ve officially been part of the Board, it is clear to me that schools typically deal with the same general issues and how those issues apply to the school specifically. Because of that, the two main issues that Princeton’s Board is currently focused on are in line with the two issues America is dealing with: racial equity and COVID-19. Our


Jackson Artis ’16 Joins the Princeton Board of Trustees

President, Christopher Eisgruber, put out a statement earlier this summer discussing how the university is very invested in pursuing anti-racism and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work. This is no small feat and is also an issue that manifests uniquely in Princeton for a variety of reasons. On the other hand, COVID-19 is, obviously, a worldwide concern. The university, which is currently operating in a fully remote capacity, is focused on doing their best to provide support and top-quality education to the student body throughout this pandemic. In both situations, we’re searching for the exit to a dark tunnel with no light and no map. The difficulty is daunting but not enough to dissuade us from the work. What’s more, the scope of both are, at the risk of understatement, quite large, so I imagine considerations for both issues will seep into most, if not all, of our conversations. Princeton is an old school and change takes a while. I’m only one person. That’s not a defeatist statement, just an acknowledgment of reality—to think that the most meaningful change could be affected by me alone in four years is naive and a little bit arrogant. More than anything, I want to make sure that the voices and feelings and opinions of those who were hurt during their time at Princeton as a result of systemic issues are brought to the table. That’s a small thing that I know I can achieve in four years. Beyond that? I want to be able to say that I’ve done the work to help create a clear path for those voices and experiences to flow into this space, and I want to be able to say that I’ve figured out a path to continue to bring those voices and experiences to the conversation after I’ve left the Board. Even having grown up in a school environment that’s similar to Princeton, I still have a lot to learn, and I hope I’m able to learn enough so that I can continue to help support and fight for those who need it after my term ends.”

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In Memoriam Pingry Remembers Former Headmaster John Hanly Mr. Hanly, Pingry’s beloved 13th Headmaster who led the School from 1987-2000, championed ethics, the arts, and intellectual rigor, and cheered for Big Blue athletics. The Pingry community is remembering him with sentiments such as “he made me proud to be an educator” and “he made me feel important.” Many have praised his calm authority, presence, encouragement, acts of kindness, and respect for others. “From my first step on campus, I have been regaled with stories of John Hanly as a leader, as a person, and as the embodiment of the Honor Code at Pingry. He helped shape Pingry as it made its way toward the end of the 20th century, with a huge emphasis on character, community, and the common good. He touched


August 23, 2020, age 78, Upper Manhattan, NY


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hundreds of lives and left a part of himself in each and every person with whom he came in contact. Helping to found New Jersey SEEDS (Scholars, Educators, Excellence, Dedication, Success), after having worked at Prep for Prep in New York City, John cared deeply about educational access and equity, a legacy we are committed to carrying on today,” says current Head of School Matt Levinson. Born in Wales and educated mostly in England, Mr. Hanly attended Stonyhurst College in Lancashire, UK, and received B.A. and M.A. Degrees (with Honors) in English Language and Literature from Oxford University. He also received an M.A. in Educational Administration from Teachers College, Columbia University. An English teacher, his early experiences included teaching English to foreign students ages 15-19 at St. Clare’s Hall in Oxford, UK; serving as Head of the English Department at Audley House School in Bicester, UK; and being an Examiner in “O” level English language for the Cambridge University Examination Board (now known as Cambridge International Examinations). Prior to his arrival at Pingry, he worked for 19 years at Trinity School in New York City in a number of different roles, including as an English teacher for Project Broadjump (weekend and summer program for urban students), an English teacher for Grades 5-12, Head of the Middle School, Assistant Headmaster/Head of the Upper School, and Interim Headmaster. At Pingry, Mr. Hanly’s earliest accomplishments included his focus on hiring dynamic young teachers, his creation of three divisions to promote community on the Basking Ridge Campus (Grades 7-8, 9-10, 11-12; Grades 9-12 since returned to being one division), and making sure that ethics permeated the entire Pingry community. Facing the challenge of student apathy toward the Honor Code, he raised and addressed ethical issues during all-school, faculty, and parent meetings; introduced and taught a junior/senior elective about ethical dilemmas; and initiated a School-wide review of the Honor Code by a committee of administrators and student government to determine how to integrate the Code into daily student life. A major result of the review was the formation of the student-run Honor Board. In addition, the requirement to report an offense was removed, the wording of the Honor Code was revised

to apply to both men and women (1988), and the Code of Conduct, a version of the Honor Code simplified for younger students, was introduced at the Lower School (1994). “John Hanly was the very embodiment of the Honor Code, and valued integrity and character over all other qualities,” says former French Teacher Kelly Jordan P ’04, ’06, who joined the faculty in 1988. “He made me want to become a better person, someone worthy of him. His talks were inspiring and humorous at the same time, and everyone, from the youngest to the oldest member of the community, could understand his message. He had much interest in and compassion for every single member of the community, and he knew everyone by name. Among his many qualities, one that needs mentioning is his outstanding generosity, for John Hanly was a man with a big heart. I feel fortunate to have known him and to have learned so much about teaching and life from him.” Senior faculty member Miller Bugliari ’52, P ’86, ’90, ’97, GP ’20, ’24 remembers Mr. Hanly’s just personality: “He was charismatic and had a great sense of humor. John also went out of his way to try to fix something he thought was not right, and was very fair in dealing with people.” Another hallmark of Mr. Hanly’s tenure was his emphasis on the arts. He added three drama courses and a tutorial program in playwriting, the Attic Theater became a home for drama classes and small productions, and the extracurricular drama program expanded. He bolstered the fine arts program to include drawing, painting, photography, pottery, and filmmaking; introduced dance in 1994; and led an effort to showcase more school music, both during the holiday festival and AFS concert. By 1997, all three departments—art, music, and drama—boasted larger arts faculty and more course offerings as part of the curriculum. Although he left Pingry three years before it opened, the Hostetter Arts Center can be seen as a realization of Mr. Hanly’s vision for the arts at Pingry. Many in the community describe Mr. Hanly as a gifted speaker whose speeches were an experience. “I remember a speech he gave at year’s end,” recalls Upper School English Teacher Tom Keating P ’27, ’29, faculty member since 1988, “and it was probably the last thing we had to do before leaving for the

Then-Headmaster John Hanly being serenaded by the Balladeers (with the Buttondowns in the background) at the Annual Fund Kick-Off on November 1, 1987.

summer. John gave a speech that was so inspiring, that so finely articulated every reason why teachers want to teach, that I actually walked out of the room wishing that I had a class to go teach. That any teacher could feel that way under those circumstances speaks volumes about the kind of leader John Hanly was.” He was also fondly remembered for wearing a pink sweater to field hockey games; former head coach Judy Lee says the team referred to it as their “good luck sweater—we continued to take it with us after he retired, and it traveled to all of our state championships. He was one of our most dedicated fans and supporters.” Other school traditions and initiatives established during the Hanly years were Convocation (1987), summer fellowships for faculty professional growth (1989), Monday assemblies, a computer center (Pingry entered the digital age in 1996-97 with Internet and email access), and a more formal community service program (today, Community and Civic Engagement), which requires students to complete 10 hours annually. By 1996, nearly 10 years into his tenure, Mr. Hanly had significantly increased the number of women in leadership positions as department directors. Pingry became accessible to a more diverse range of students in the early 1990s, when Mr. Hanly, in collaboration with others, conceived of New Jersey SEEDS (Scholars, Educators, Excellence, Dedication, Success) to prepare motivated, high-achieving, low-income students for admission to independent schools across the country. Since 1993, Pingry has been a SEEDS partner school, offering its campus for SEEDS preparatory programs. Mr. Hanly was a SEEDS Trustee and then named Trustee Emeritus. His other professional affiliations included Secretary and President of the New Jersey Association of Independent Schools;

Trustee of St. Philip’s Academy; and member of The Country Day School Headmasters’ Association of the United States and The Head Mistresses Association of the East. In 1995, toward the end of Mr. Hanly’s tenure at Pingry, the School embarked on The Campaign for Pingry with a five-year goal of $40 million. At the public Campaign launch in 1998, Mr. Hanly remarked that the School needed funds “to provide our students with an even better education than we do now.” At that time, Pingry’s Campaign was the largest among all independent day schools, and with $23 million raised for endowment for financial aid and faculty support, Pingry was able to increase its endowment from less than $5 million (1987) to nearly $45 million (2000), which was critical to the school’s future success. Through many people’s efforts, but particularly Mr. Hanly’s, Pingry surpassed its Campaign goal by nearly $5 million. Among the Campaign outcomes were an increased endowment, a robust Annual Fund, and upgrades of both campuses, including the Arts Center, a new fitness center, a modernized baseball field, and renovations of the Lower School building with a new library, new classroom wing, and a playground dedicated to Joyce Hanrahan. In 1997, Pingry honored Mr. Hanly with the Cyril and Beatrice Baldwin Pingry Family Citizen of the Year Award, which recognizes “members of the Pingry family who, in rendering meritorious service to the community, have demonstrated those qualities of responsible citizenship that Pingry aspires to instill in all of those associated with the school.” In March 1999, Mr. Hanly announced that he would be retiring. To ensure his legacy, donors established a scholarship fund, a lecture series, and a faculty mentorship fund

in his honor. The John Hanly Scholarship Fund provides full and partial financial aid to individuals who best exemplify the qualities that he asked students to strive for—academic excellence, commitment to community, respect for and service to others, and ethical behavior. The John Hanly Lecture Series on Ethics and Morality celebrates Mr. Hanly’s commitment to teaching students and other members of the school community how to make tough decisions within an ethical framework, and enables Pingry to bring a variety of speakers to campus each year. The John Hanly Fund for Faculty Development ensures the effectiveness of Pingry’s faculty through continued professional stimulation and development. Mentoring his younger teachers was one of Mr. Hanly’s most notable qualities. Adam Rohdie, an Upper School history teacher and administrator during that era, now Head of School at Greenwich Country Day School, comments: “I owe him everything. He took a chance on an Anthropology major and hired me to teach history—my first job out of college. When he asked me to be Dean of Students, he said it was a way to impact a larger segment of the School. When situations came up, being able to talk with him and listen to his process of analyzing gave me great insights into how to think about a problem. John Hanly was a legend, and I was so proud to call him a dear friend and one of my most important mentors.” Mr. Rohdie wrote an article about Mr. Hanly that appears in the Winter 2016 issue of Independent School magazine (published by the National Association of Independent Schools) and includes memories from the Pingry community. After retiring, he remained active with Pingry by returning for one of his namesake lectures; appearing in Pingry: A Portrait in Blue, a special film produced to celebrate the School’s 150th anniversary; and attending both the Beinecke House groundbreaking and the 150th Anniversary Gala. Mr. Hanly will be fondly remembered by the Pingry community—everyone whose lives he impacted not only as Headmaster, but also through his subsequent visits to campus. The 2000 Blue Book is dedicated to him—in an edition themed “outer space,” the yearbook staff describes him as “the ‘central light’ of our school, the ‘radiating star’ of our community…a supernova of a teacher. He has taught us important lessons for life, in and out of school, and values that will be forever imprinted on our hearts and in our memories.” He was predeceased by his sister Sheelagh in February. Survivors include his brother-in-law Conor McLoughlin, nieces and nephew, Karen McLoughlin, David McLoughlin, and Michelle McLoughlin, and their families.

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In Memoriam EDWARD WOOD CISSEL ’39 June 16, 2020, age 99, Little Compton, RI Mr. Cissel attended Pingry from 1927-1935, when he left to attend Hotchkiss School, from which he graduated. He also graduated from Princeton University, although his college education was interrupted by World War II, when he served as a forward observer in a field artillery battalion in the U.S. Army’s Fourth Infantry Division. On D-Day, he landed on Utah Beach and fought in the battles of Cherbourg and Saint-Lô, earning a Bronze Star for meritorious service. In 1949, he began a cumulative 18-year career in education at Pingry (working at the School at two different times due to further military service)—teaching various subjects; coaching football, tennis, baseball, swimming (head coach from 1954-1960), and basketball; and serving as Head of Junior School (1960-1964), Director of Admission (1960-1965), Director of Summer School (1960-1967), and Assistant Headmaster (1964-1967). The 1958 Blue Book is dedicated to him. Among alumni memories, Vic Pfeiffer ’67 recalls playing defensive back while Mr. Cissel watched a football scrimmage in Junior School—standing on the sidelines, Mr. Cissel caught a pass that was wide of its mark, so Vic instinctively tackled him. When he saw Vic’s startled reaction, Mr. Cissel patted him on the helmet and said, “Good tackle, Vic.” Other alumni recall Mr. Cissel making them feel relaxed and confident during the admission process. Leaving Pingry, Mr. Cissel became the fourth headmaster of John Burroughs School for 19 years—among his achievements, he invested in the faculty, broadened enrollment by doubling tuition assistance, oversaw a strengthening of the school’s financial position and expansion of its campus, and encouraged students to engineer a new form of self-rule, resulting in the Student Congress. Burroughs bestowed the title of Honorary Alumni on Mr. Cissel and his wife, Jane (only five other people in the school’s history have been recognized that way). He was predeceased by Jane and their son, Edward W. Cissel, Jr. Survivors include four children, Sally, Mary (Paul), John ’73 (Peggy), and Charles; seven grandchildren, Sarah, Amy (Tyler), William, Grace (Peter), Ellie (Nate), Katherine (Graham), and Margaret (Steve); and 10 great-grandchildren. Mr. Cissel passed away due to complications from COVID-19. Read more about his Pingry memories in the May 2015 issue of The Pingry Review.

his father, and served on its Board of Directors. He devoted his life to supporting HIV/ AIDS, the LGBTQ+ community, and mental health issues, and was an active volunteer; his philanthropic efforts began in the late 1980s when AIDS was devastating the gay community. He also supported and served as Co-Chair of the Board of Directors of In the Life Media, which produced In the Life, a PBS series on LGBTQ+ issues, and he helped finance the documentary Rebellion: Stonewall!, which aired on MSNBC in 2019. He served on the board of the van Ameringen Foundation, was president of his own H. van Ameringen Foundation, and served as co-founder and trustee of the Galvan Foundation, which addresses poverty and inequality in Hudson, NY. He was preceded in death by his siblings Patricia and Lily. Survivors include his spouse, T. Eric Galloway, and six nieces and nephews.

HENRY VAN AMERINGEN ’48 September 9, 2020, age 89, New York, NY Mr. van Ameringen graduated from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, was an executive in Paris for International Flavors & Fragrances, a company founded by

JOHN ALDEN HALL ’56 May 13, 2020, age 82, Concord, MA Mr. Hall graduated from C.W. Post College, earning a B.A. in Physics. He worked for many years at Polaroid Corporation, reporting to the Founder and CEO. He was responsible for over


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JOHN ROBERT “JACK” O’BRIEN ’55 May 7, 2020, age 82, Wall Township, NJ and Juno Beach, FL Mr. O’Brien graduated with a degree in Marketing from the College of the Holy Cross before enlisting in the U.S. Marine Corps and achieving the rank of Captain. After being discharged, and with the Garden State Parkway under construction, he opened the O’Brien Funeral Home in Wall Township to serve the population that would be retiring “at the shore.” Years of dedication to his community—from serving on the Planning Board to Kiwanis Club to helping other businesses grow and expand—helped to establish both Mr. O’Brien and his business as pillars of that community. His hands-on approach to building the funeral home led him to future real estate developments in Wall Township, and his success as a businessman not only brought him to service as Officer for several local banks, but also led him to open another branch of O’Brien Funeral Home in Brick. Mr. O’Brien always reminded everyone of the Eighth Wonder of the World, “the magic of compound interest”—while he was most often talking about financial investing, he also saw the value of investing in people and watching them grow. Survivors include his children Lauren O’Neil (Jeff Groezinger), Kara O’Shaughnessy (Michael), John (Laurie Levan), and Kevin (Mark Norkus), and grandchildren Mark, Luke, Ava, Max, James, and Jude.

120 thirty-second national and global television commercials, which was rated one of the top “50” of its time in television history. He also served on the Board of Directors of Polaroid’s Retiree’s Association. In 1998, he started his own Internet consulting firm, PagePresence, where he created and designed many websites, pay-per-click campaigns, metrics, and keyword and phrase studies. Upon retirement, he was active with the Concord Friends of the Aging, where he served many years on the Board of Directors. Survivors include many local friends and acquaintances. GROSVENOR HUTCHINS LEE “RICK” RICHARDSON ’56 April 28, 2020, age 82, Pittsford, NY Mr. Richardson graduated with a degree in History from Trinity College. He began his career in the international division of Thomas & Betts Corporation (now ABB Installation Products), living in Europe and on the West Coast. He moved his family to Rochester, where he worked for AMP Incorporated (now part of TE Connectivity) and Hansford Manufacturing. He later founded QA Productivity Systems, which specialized in precision measurement equipment. A lover of sports, furniture making, history, and storytelling, he published a children’s book for his family. Survivors include his wife of 53 years, Margy; three children, Rick (Darcy), Merrill, and Benagh Newsome (Josh); five grandchildren, Addie, Hannah, Archer, David, and Maggie; and brother Jim ’53 (Debby). THAYER “TERRY” TALCOTT, JR. ’56 September 15, 2020, age 82, Morristown, NJ Mr. Talcott played for Pingry’s first lacrosse team (the first in New Jersey), graduated from Middlebury College, served in the Vermont and New Jersey National Guards, received a Master’s degree from the Stonier Graduate School of Banking, and spent his career in banking, becoming an executive of First Fidelity Bancorporation (now Wells Fargo) and president and chief executive officer of First Morris Bank, Morristown (now Provident Bank). In addition, Mr. Talcott spent over 50 years as a director of Borden Mining Company, the last 15 as president of the board. Always involved with the community, he was on the Board of Managers of Rosedale Cemetery (the final resting place of Dr. Pingry and his wife) and enjoyed leadership positions with the YWCA of Essex & West Hudson, Hunterdon County Chamber of Commerce, Educational Assistance Corporation of Morris County, and Pingry Alumni Association.

Mr. Talcott looked for opportunities to mentor young people and was an ardent conservationist. He was predeceased by his brother Preston Lea Talcott ’59. Survivors include his wife Ann, sister Carol Ackland (Robert), sister-in-law Diana (Lea), and brother-in-law C. David Ward (Ann). JAMES WHITFORD IV ’57 May 24, 2020, age 80, Staten Island, NY Mr. Whitford graduated from Franklin & Marshall College, where he was managing editor of the campus newspaper, and served in the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve. After four years with James Whitford, Architect, a 100-yearold family-owned business that spanned three generations (designing hundreds of Staten Island residential and commercial structures and public buildings), he joined the Staten Island Advance as a copy editor. He then became a public relations practitioner, working in several fields for the American Gas Association, Dun & Bradstreet, GAB Business Services, and the New York City Department of Correction as Assistant Commissioner for Communications during Mayor Edward I. Koch’s administration. Concurrent with his public relations work, he taught public relations, writing, and journalism at Yeshiva and Adelphi Universities. Mr. Whitford returned to the Advance staff and retired after 25 years as editor of special sections that were published periodically throughout the year. His professional affiliations included the Publicity Club of New York, where he served a two-year term as president, the Overseas Press Club of America, and the International Association of Business Communicators. Survivors include his wife of 53 years, Kathryn, whom he met while on the Advance staff; sons James (Jency) and Grant (April); and grandchildren Loryn, Jack, Alex, Henry, and Sophia. STEPHEN GREELEY WILKERSON ’59 April 24, 2020, age 79, Hanover, NH and Oak Bluffs, MA Mr. Wilkerson graduated from Middlebury College with a bachelor’s in Geography and served in the U.S. Army’s Counter Intelligence Corps. Following an honorable discharge, he began a 35-year career at Nabisco, moving between leadership positions in strategic planning, marketing, and sales. He was actively involved in and committed to his communities. He was predeceased by his brother Oscar A. Wilkerson III ’53. Survivors include his wife of 53 years, Kathy, whom he met while in high school; children Stephanie (Philip), Tracey (Pete), and Jim (Christina); grandchildren Kate, Drew, Reiley, Osie, Matthew, and Sarah; and sister Wendy.

JOHN SCOTT KERR ’61 July 5, 2020, age 76, Scottsdale, AZ Mr. Kerr received an undergraduate degree from Kenyon College and a Master’s degree from The Bread Loaf School of English, and became a Certified Financial Planner from the College for Financial Planning. During his high school and college years, he was active in sports, particularly, football, wrestling, and track and field. While attending Kenyon College, he met his future wife, Bonnie, and they would have celebrated their 55th anniversary this year. He taught English at the Taft School, then enlisted in the U.S. Army where he served as a Staff Sergeant E6. He was an Area Intelligence Specialist in Da Lat, Vietnam for one year. While in Vietnam, he taught English as a second language to many Vietnamese. Mr. Kerr then began a 39-year career at the Kent School, where he held many positions, including English Teacher, Director of Admissions, Director of Planned Giving, Senior Development Officer, and Assistant Secretary of the Corporation. In addition, he coached varsity wrestling. He was inducted into Pingry’s Athletics Hall of Fame as a member of the undefeated 1960 Football Team, for which he was first-string center, and wrote an essay on the occasion of Pingry’s 150th anniversary that appears in the Winter 2011-12 issue of The Pingry Review. He was preceded in death by his parents, one sister, and one brother, Douglas ’57. Survivors include his loving wife Bonnie, sister-in-law Peggy (Brian), nephew Michael (Mandie), great-nieces Kenzie and Delaney, and niece Carla and her partner Stacie. Mr. Kerr passed away from thyroid cancer two days before his 77th birthday. JOSEPH DE RAISMES III ’63 July 10, 2020, age 76, Boulder, CO Mr. De Raismes completed undergraduate studies at Yale and received a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He worked as a lawyer for the Rocky Mountain branch of the American Civil Liberties Union and for the state government before serving as City Attorney for the City of Boulder, known for legally protecting the city’s internationally renowned open space system from 1979– 2003. He also helped lead the city, along with other plaintiffs including Denver and Aspen, in a lawsuit that struck down a voter-approved state constitutional amendment that many residents opposed

because they thought it unfairly targeted the LGBTQ+ population. His legal thinking was instrumental in further protecting Boulder open space lands: with his help, open space policy in the mid-1980s was approved for encoding into the city’s charter, rather than an ordinance, so that it could only be changed with a public vote. In the 1990s, Mr. De Raismes helped a team litigate Evans v. Romer all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, successfully arguing that a state constitutional amendment preventing the recognition of gay people as a protected class was unconstitutional. Mr. De Raismes also served as Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Colorado School of Law, President and Trustee of the International Municipal Lawyers Association, and as a member of the board of Mental Health America. He was a member of the Yale Russian Chorus and held a lifelong love of music, which he applied in a leadership role with the board of the Boulder Bach Festival. He was inducted into Pingry’s Athletics Hall of Fame as a member of the 1962 Football Team. His cousin Bob Kirkland ’48 and cousin-in-law Jerry Graham, Jr. ’52 predeceased him. Survivors include his wife Jaird, son Joseph, sisters Nicole and Michelle, and nephew Stuart Graham ’81. ROBERT J. NEWHOUSE III ’64 July 21, 2020, age 74, Nantucket, MA and Vero Beach, FL Mr. Newhouse, President of his Pingry Class, received a Bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University and an M.B.A. from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He had a long and distinguished career as a senior executive with the global insurance broker Marsh & McLennan. A lifelong artist, he focused on sculpting in both wood and stone and produced a wide range of works. He was inducted into Pingry’s Athletics Hall of Fame as a member of the 1962 Football Team. Survivors include his wife Laurie, son Robert (Ellen), grandsons Hayes and Cole, brothers Stephan ’65, P ’95, ’97, ’99 and Britt, and nephews James ’95, Christopher ’97, and Stephan ’99. GREGORY MILLER DOWNS ’70 June 14, 2020, age 67, East Sandwich, MA Mr. Downs spent a postgraduate year at the Leys School in Cambridge, England and traveled throughout Europe and North Africa before attending Colby College. He spent five years as a deckhand and cook on commercial

The editorial staff makes every effort to publish an obituary for and pay tribute to the accomplishments of alumni who have passed away, based on information available as of press time. If family members, classmates, or friends would like to submit tributes, please contact Greg Waxberg ‘96 at

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In Memoriam king crab and salmon fishing boats out of Dutch Harbor in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska. While on extended fishing trips in Alaska, Mr. Downs became interested in law, so he left the West Coast to study law at Rutgers University, where he received a Juris Doctor. He served as a law clerk for the New Jersey Supreme Court and later relocated to Sandwich on Cape Cod, where he was a partner in the law firm Losordo and Downs. He was active in the community and served as a board member and volunteer with a number of charities. He continued pro bono work and grant writing for nonprofit organizations in his retirement and up until his passing. Survivors include his brother Christopher ’68 (Paula); nieces Christine and Kathryne; stepdaughter Trinity and her partner Steven; and grandchildren Broderick and Liberty. JOHN C. LIVENGOOD ’70 June 26, 2020, age 68, Washington, D.C. Mr. Livengood received an Architecture degree from Syracuse University and a Law degree from Catholic University. He was a Senior Managing Director at Ankura and a leader in the field of forensic construction schedule delay analysis (retrospective analysis of an event that delayed a project). His service to the profession included contributing to the work of AACE International (Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering) for the past two decades, including serving as president in 2016-2017; he was honored with the 2020 O.T. Zimmerman Founder’s Award in recognition of his significant achievements and contributions. He also contributed to the ABA Forum on Construction Law, UK Society of Construction Law, and the International Bar Association. Among his favorite activities, he coached and managed youth soccer teams and taught referee certification courses to girls and boys. He was particularly proud of his work for WAGS (Women and Girls in Soccer, formerly Washington Area Girls Soccer), a competitive soccer league for girls. His grandfather, Horace R. Livengood, graduated from Pingry in 1892 and 1894, and his father, The Reverend Hugh Livengood ’33, also graduated from Pingry. Survivors include Caren Yglesias, his wife of 42 years; children Magenta, Hugh (Arielle), and Ian (Katie); grandchildren Henry and James; sister Becky (Walter); brother Ford ’67 (Geri); and nieces and nephews, including Rebecca ’03. Mr. Livengood passed away from the Powassan virus. GILL UPJOHN REDPATH ’71 August 27, 2020, age 67, Evans, GA Mr. Redpath graduated from The Millbrook School in Millbrook, NY, received a Bachelor’s 62

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degree from Susquehanna University, and received two Master’s degrees from Augusta State University: one in Counselor Education and the other in Educational Leadership. Mr. Redpath taught at St. Edward’s School in Vero Beach, FL; worked at Augusta Prep in Development, Marketing, and Admissions; then taught English at Augusta’s Westminster School. Survivors include his brother, John, sister-in-law, Suzanne, their daughter, Ann (Joakim), and numerous cousins. PETER J. BOFFA ’74 August 2020, age 63, New York, NY Mr. Boffa attended Vassar College, where he obtained a degree in Art History. He worked for Saks Fifth Avenue as a women’s clothing buyer for 10 years, then for American Express, where he held various managerial positions until retiring due to illness. He was active in caring for the gardens outside his co-op in the West Village of Manhattan. Survivors include his partner of 25 years, Jose Barral; father, John Sr.; brothers Chris, Paul, and John ’72; and numerous nieces and nephews. Mr. Boffa passed away after a seven-year struggle with brain cancer. ROBERT S. KLIMOWICZ ’74 July 23, 2020, age 63, Allenhurst, NJ Mr. Klimowicz graduated from Lehigh University and was an avid fisherman. Survivors include his loving wife Doris, sons Henry and Eric, and brother Thomas (Gabi). KRISHNA PAUL SINGHO ’74 August 24, 2020, age 62, Northwest Washington, D.C. Mr. Singho received the C.B. Newton Pingry-Princeton Scholarship Prize and graduated from Princeton University with a major in English. He spent a few years teaching at Gilman School in Baltimore and the remainder of his career in Washington, D.C. in the fields of computerized litigation support and management information systems. He spent many years at MCI Telecommunications and received their “Excellence in Service” Award. The bulk of his career was at the Department of Justice, where Ms. Singho served as a project manager for several components and was recognized with numerous honors and commendations. Survivors include his beloved wife of 23 years, Hilary; cherished son, Jack; loving siblings Romiel and Lora-Rani Singho, and Blair and Garth Bracy; brother and sister-in-law John and Ann Davis-Allan, and their children Will and Becca. Mr. Singho died due to complications from multiple myeloma, which he had battled since 2007.

WILLIAM C. “BILL” ADAMS III ’86 April 15, 2020, age 52, Santa Clarita, CA Mr. Adams graduated from Lafayette College. He was a dedicated father and devotee of the game of lacrosse, a sport he learned to love at Pingry, under Coach Gerald Keane, and honed at Lafayette. Miller Bugliari ’52, P ’86, ’90, ’97, GP ’20, ’24, his soccer coach, was also a mentor. For more than 30 years, he played and served as a referee and coach for numerous youth lacrosse teams and games in California. “Bill is synonymous with youth lacrosse in Santa Clarita,” wrote the Southern California Lacrosse Association. He introduced a new generation to the game he loved, and he nurtured young players not only to learn the skills of the game, but also to become great human beings. Mr. Adams died suddenly of a heart attack during a run. Survivors include his son, Griffin; his sister, Caroline ’89; mother, Molly; father, Bill Jr.; and former wife, Shannon. To share stories about Mr. Adams, see EDWARD J. ALBOWICZ, ESQ. ’93 September 11, 2020, age 45, Summit, NJ Mr. Albowicz graduated from Brandeis University, cum laude, with a B.A. in Economics and received a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania. He was a lawyer for Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer, then a partner at the law firm of Mandelbaum & Salsburg Roseland. Mr. Albowicz also enjoyed coaching youth baseball teams. Survivors include his wife Mitzie; children Nicholas, Zachary ’32, and Mary ’33; father Edward ’68; and brother Dominick.

Faculty/Staff FRANCIS L. CHUPICK May 14, 2020, age 88, Succasunna, NJ Mr. Chupick worked at Pingry from 1965-1969, teaching Upper School math and coaching freshman baseball. He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, was honorably discharged, and attended Kutztown University on the G.I. Bill. Survivors include his beloved wife of 60 years, Barbara Chupick; three devoted sons, Jonathan Chupick, James Chupick, and Jason Chupick; and six cherished grandchildren, Madeline, Carly, Miles, Henry, Elodie, and Tyler.

A Visit to the Archives The Terms that Started It All To commemorate the beginning of The Pingry School’s 160th year, The Pingry Review shares the official document that marked the launch of the institution: the original rent agreement, dated November 7, 1861, between Dr. John F. Pingry and fellow educator Jonathan Townley, Jr. Seven years earlier in Roseville, NJ, Dr. Pingry had founded a well-respected academy that ultimately dissolved, having lost too many students to the Civil War, while Mr. Townley would be leaving his school in Elizabeth to join the war effort . . . hence, another chance for Dr. Pingry to lead a school. In the document, Dr. Pingry agreed to rent Mr. Townley’s property on Mechanic Street* in Elizabeth for an initial period of two years, with an option for a third (by an amendment on the back of the sheet, the agreement was extended to cover a fourth year, so the School remained at this first location for four years before moving to Westminster Avenue): “This is to certify, that I have this day hired and taken from Jonathan Townley Jun., the premises, No. 23 Mechanic St., in the city of Elizabeth, county of Union, state of New Jersey, consisting of a Dwelling-House, Barn, and out-houses, with garden belonging to the same, a School-Room, & Gymnasium, with playground attached, to have undisturbed possession of the same, for the term of two years from the first day of September A.D. 1861, to the first day of September A.D. 1863, with the privilege of occupying, in person, a third year, viz. to the first day of September A.D. 1864, if I so desire, on the following terms: viz. The rent for the first year to be three hundred dollars, ($300); for the second year, three hundred and fifty dollars, ($350); for the third year, four hundred dollars, ($400); payable quarterly in advance on the first day of September, December, March, and June, the said Townley engaging to keep the premises in comfortable repair . . .” * Now East Grand Street

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A Final Look Closing Remarks from Upper School Director Ananya Chatterji P ’25 on Parents’ Day

There is a term in zoology and animal behavior called imprinting. This term refers to the way in which a very young animal attaches itself to the first object—or person, or animal, or inanimate thing—with which it has contact . . . I am not even close to being a biologist, so my understanding of this is limited. But suffice it to say that I understand imprinting as a form of learning. When I was a young faculty member, fresh faced and eager and wanting to do everything perfectly, but actually doing nothing well, I would sit in Hauser Auditorium and watch the opening faculty meetings of the year. . . And these meetings—back then, as they are now, were run by the head of school. And there I was—a baby bird, in the audience. And I imprinted on Mr. Hanly. Despite what we know about him now, and how he influenced and inspired the lives of countless people, Mr. Hanly did not seek the limelight and he did not toss around charisma. I can still remember the way he would walk slowly across the apron in the auditorium to the stage, and then—almost reluctantly—speak into the microphone. He was, at heart, an introvert. But he was an exquisite communicator . . . I only worked for Mr. Hanly for four years, but I remember not just the way he spoke, but what he said, as clear as day. He defined leadership for me. He set a bar, a tone, an expectation for what a “school person” should be, who a school person should be, what our priorities should be, how much we should commit, how to think about right vs. not right, how to carry This excerpt has been edited ourselves in front of our students and each other. for length; to hear it in full, He set this bar, and like a hatchling, I have remained visit strongly imprinted on him. . . . in many ways, Mr. Hanly seemed to be flawless on the exterior . . . We came to learn, from Mr. Hanly himself, that he wasn’t perfect. He admitted this. And this is how we learned. This is how I set my bar. This is how I calibrated during my time of imprinting. It was okay to make mistakes. It was important to own them. It was important to own them publicly, to say “I am sorry,” to ask for forgiveness. Mr. Hanly did not teach me what it meant to be a leader—he taught me what it meant to be a leader of human beings. His legacy leaves behind many things; not the least of them is our open and candid consideration of the Honor Code in our day-to-day lives . . . He created the student-run Honor Board on our campus. He spoke to us about not just having a moral compass, but using it when it is most difficult to do so, not when it is easy. We know this year is one of change . . . I am not here to talk about the pandemic; we all know this year is different. The Honor Code, however, is exactly the same. It means the same things to us that it always has. It directs us and guides us. We rest on it, we turn to it. Perhaps now, after we have lost Mr. Hanly, it means something even more than it has before.


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