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TABLE O F CO NTENTS

OUR MISSION Virginia Episcopal School is an engaging community that guides students to strive toward full stature in their academic, ethical, spiritual and personal growth.

HEADMASTER G. Thomas Battle, Jr. ’83 DIRECTOR OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Catherine Hunter Varner DESIGNER Esther Elmore Underwood WRITERS Allison Kughn Ebert Jill Sollazzo Esther Underwood Catherine Varner PHOTOGRAPHERS Adam Underwood Esther Underwood Catherine Varner

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World-Renowned Paul Taylor Dancers Perform at VES

Endowment Established to Honor Female Faculty

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VES Recognizes 50 Years Since Integration

2018 Alumni Weekend

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“It’s Not About the Quilts, It’s About the Kids”

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The Driver, the Cyclist and the Surgeon A story of honor and integrity

Virginia Episcopal School, founded in 1916 in Lynchburg, Va., is an independent, coeducational college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12.

Virginia Episcopal School 400 VES Road, Lynchburg, VA VES.ORG

8 1 Day | 500 Donors Make a gift on April 11 to help VES meet the $500,000 challenge

13 Save the Date for Founders Day & Homecoming

14 Remembering Dr. John Risher ’28

15 Gratitude in Giving

16 VES Launches Virginia Summer Arts Collaborative


World-Renowned Paul Taylor Dancers Perform at VES Sixty-eight years after Paul Taylor’s graduation in 1949, VES and the Lynchburg community bore witness to his genius as a pioneer of modern dance and, at age 87, one of the top choreographers in the world today. Taylor 2—the dance company’s six-member troupe—traveled to VES to perform their art and teach master classes in movement and dance for students at VES and area colleges. Joshua Miller, director of Theater Arts at VES, connected with the Taylor 2 dancers, who were eager to bring their program to our community. “It is exciting to learn that Paul has shared his VES memories with his dancers. They came curious to learn more about the school and Paul’s early life,” Miller said. In addition to sharing their professional prowess, they spent time with faculty, in the archives and on the campus to take their impressions back to New York and Paul. About the performances, Miller observed, “Through his choreography Paul tells stories, and his stories are gritty and they’re deep and they’re real. What an incredible way for our students to learn about expressing oneself, the blending of art and life, and illuminating important issues through one’s craft.”

Though Paul Taylor had not yet started dancing when he studied at VES, he was noted for his engagement and leadership from 1945-1949 as a Counselor, member of the V-Club, track and field and football athlete, singer, president of the Hop Committee, and artist, cartoonist and editorin-chief of the school newspaper, The Meteor. Read about Paul Taylor’s extensive professional achievements at ves.org/paultaylor.

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(L to R) The New York Times Magazine journalist Mosi Secret, Bud Doughton ’71, Jerrauld Jones ’72, Tony Johnson ’74, Bill Alexander ‘71, Marvin Barnard ’71, Jamie Johnson, Jr. ’73, Greg Prioleau ’73 and Terry Sherrill ’73

VES REFLECTS ON

50 YEARS SINCE INTEGRATION

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his year, VES launched the first in what will be a series called the Dare to Imagine a Better World Dialogues. Focusing on critical

milestones in the school’s history, these Founders Day conversations are designed to elevate awareness and drive thought-provoking discussions—about where we’ve been and where we are today as a school, a nation, a world. “Our hope for these conversations and related student studies across the school year is to highlight new ideas and solutions on topics ranging from integration and equity and inclusion to women’s issues to globalization,” said Chris Button, Associate Head of School. In the fall, we honored 50 years since that pivotal moment when VES became an integration pioneer, and Bill Alexander ’71 and Marvin Barnard ’71—our school’s first two Stouffer Foundation Scholars— matriculated in 1967. That courageous first step forward, led by Headmaster Austin Montgomery, made VES the first Virginia boarding school to integrate and forever improved our community.

In late September, VES welcomed home more than 200 Bishops to consider the impact of integration at VES—a particularly timely event following VES’ national exposure in the September 2017 publication of journalist Mosi Secret’s The New York Times Magazine article, “The Way to Survive It Was to Make A’s,” and hour-long podcast, “Essay B,” on This American Life—both in-depth studies of the selection, matriculation, experiences at school and adult lives of seven of the eight men, all Stouffer Foundation Scholars, who attended VES. Leading up to Founders Day, our students studied VES’ history and issues of integration, civil rights, culture and identity, communities and power through English and history classes, Student Life programming, books, films, materials in the VES archives, and Mr. Secret’s work. When Founders Day arrived, Dr. Barnard and Mr. Secret joined students in classrooms, for a special assembly and at lunch tables. That evening, Mr. Secret moderated a dynamic panel discussion with Drs. Alexander and Barnard, former VES teachers

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Nat Jobe and Jim Hopkins, and classmate Bud Doughton ’71. The panel highlighted the impact of the eight young men who led the way at VES from 1967-75 and explored the issues of diversity, inclusion and equity that still exist today. A dinner followed, honoring these men and VES’ first black faculty member, Hank Wilson (1979-82). While on campus, their stories were captured on video and in Bishop Radio interviews by Paul Skorcz ’18.

(L to R) Trae Watkins ’08, Marvin Barnard ’71 and Lucas Sandidge ’08

Headmaster Battle noted, “The VES of today was shaped by the indomitable will and spirit of these ‘Magnificent Eight’ pioneers, and we are a stronger, smarter and much more interesting community as a result of the diversity that we now enjoy. We are proud that our school continues to guide students to think beyond themselves and that we work diligently to improve the experience and education for every student who passes through Jett Hall.” Following these events, to demonstrate deep respect for these men’s leadership in integrating VES and their continued commitment to the school, the VES Trustees made financial gifts to support increased access to education at VES for diverse students—$50,000 to augment the existing Dr. Bill Alexander Diversity Scholarship Fund and $50,000 to establish the Dr. Marvin Barnard Diversity Scholarship fund.

Bill Alexander ’71

Marvin Barnard ’71

Join Us in Building Endowed Scholarships It takes at least $1.25 million to endow a full scholarship for one year. If you are interested in helping us build support that will educate a student with financial need and a diverse background, we invite you to direct a gift toward these scholarship endowments. (L to R) Arnie Crews ’73, Tony, Marvin, Ivy Drew ’18, Bill, Greg and Terry

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irginia Episcopal School alumnus James Hopkins ’79—and son of beloved former Senior Master and English teacher Jim

Hopkins—gave up a successful Wall Street career and moved to Kathmandu, Nepal. As a practicing Buddhist, Hopkins felt compelled to study at the monastery in the city. He became involved not only as a practitioner, but also as its head fundraiser and began accompanying the monastery’s Llama in traveling and raising funds. During his time in Kathmandu, Hopkins became familiar with a beggar community in the city, and noticed the women there made beautiful primitive, multi-colored quilts from fabric scraps found around the city. As he came to know more of the women and children of the community, Hopkins wanted to help them, so he started the non-profit organization Quilts for Kids Nepal. Hopkins has brought artisans and others who work with fabrics to Kathmandu to work with the women on their craft. Hopkins markets the handiwork of these women as a vehicle to raise money to educate the community’s children. Since its inception in 2006, Quilts for Kids Nepal has provided as many as 60 kids a year with the opportunity to attend school.

Nancy Allen of Lynchburg, Va.—a lawyer, owner of a local yoga studio and longtime friend of Hopkins— owns several quilts and is active in supporting Quilts for Kids Nepal. To her, the quilts represent both a unique piece of art as well as a wonderful opportunity to support young children in their desire to learn and gain greater opportunities for their future. “Everyone who purchases a quilt has a hand in that,” Allen reflected. “From photographs of the children who have received support through the organization, it’s amazing to see the new range of possibilities available to them.” Given the benefits of the program to the women and children, Hopkins is eager to grow sales of these quilts to a larger scale. Cost, distribution, sales and marketing all weigh heavily on Hopkins, but with challenges also come unique opportunities to produce creative solutions. And this is where the VES connection to Quilts for Kids Nepal begins.

Headmaster Tommy Battle re-entered the classroom this year, teaching Economics to upperclassmen. Beyond teaching the basic principles, Battle wanted to engage his class in a hands-on learning project. He had an aha! moment when he spoke with VES trustee Bill Sanford ’77 about Hopkins’ program.

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Headmaster Tommy Battle ’83 (L), Bill Sandford ’77 (R) and students showcase one of the colorful quilts.

“The Portrait of a VES Graduate commits us to develop and inspire curious and innovative thinkers. Giving them a real-world problem to solve where they apply what they learn about economics in the classroom is far more beneficial to their education than simply reading case studies.” The students—junior Bryce Waterman and seniors Chip Bass, Stella Bradford, Ivy Drew, Wyatt Elam, David Gau, John Sprock, William Sutton, Peyton Tompkins and Meg Walsh—divided into three teams and were charged with developing distinctive strategies for meeting the challenges that Quilts for Kids Nepal faces. Battle brought into the mix others to teach—Catherine Varner, director of Marketing and Communications, worked with the students to think about how to develop the message, build a marketing plan and identify the best customers to target. Bill Sanford, a lifelong friend of Hopkins, has been active in shaping the VES project, sharing his expertise in finance, distribution strategies, sales and marketing.

The core deliverable for the class: a “Shark Tank” format presentation of their business plans delivered to VES Sharks Chad Hanning, Jen Anderson, Bob Leake, Bill Sanford and James Hopkins, who joined via Facetime from Kathmandu. After the pitches were delivered, Sanford addressed the students:

There isn’t just one winner here today. In fact, there are many, and the most important winners are the kids. As we bring together the best ideas from each of the presentations into one solid business plan, we have to keep this in mind: It’s not about the quilts, it’s about the kids! If we have that as our focus, we will help Quilts for Kids Nepal find success.”

Interested in purchasing a quilt? Visit ves.org/quiltsforkids TOWARD FULL STATURE MAGAZINE

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Will Huffman ’08, Dean Otto and Dr. Matt McGirt in San Fransisco

The Driver, the Cyclist and the Surgeon A Story of Honor and Integrity Ten years ago when Will Huffman ’08—then a senior and chair of the Honor Committee—established VES Honor and Integrity Week, he could not have predicted the impact those themes would play out in his own life. But on a typical day just over one year ago and every day since then, Huffman has lived fully into the meaning of

As neurosurgeon Dr. Matt McGirt shared the difficult news with Otto’s family, their response set the tone for the future: “You don’t know Dean. If there’s a chance, he’s going to take it.” It was little surprise, then, when Otto said to Dr. McGirt, “In a year from now, if I can run a half[-marathon], you’ll do it with me.”

the words honor and integrity. As Will and a friend (another VES graduate) left Charlotte in the early hours for the Virginia Tech – East Carolina football game, the air was thick and visibility was poor. Huffman was at the wheel when his truck struck a cyclist, fracturing his spine. Dean Otto, a 52-year-old husband, father and businessman in the tech sector, came out of emergency surgery with at best a 2 percent chance of walking again.

After tracking down Otto through social media, Huffman visited him regularly in the hospital. The forgiveness and friendship began there and they continued to build a relationship throughout rehab and after Otto returned home. Otto inspired Huffman and wife, Jeanelle, to live a more active lifestyle, including inviting Huffman to run the half-marathon in Napa, Calif.—the same event he challenged Dr. McGirt to run.

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In an unbelievable—and utterly inspiring—story that evolves out of a paralyzing accident, these three men—the driver, the cyclist and his surgeon—have now completed that half-marathon together on the first anniversary of the tragic accident. It’s a story of forgiveness, a story of fortitude and perseverance so powerful that it has been chronicled by The Today Show, ABC World News, The New York Post, People magazine and The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Through it all, Huffman relied on his own principles of honor and integrity instilled by his parents, Beth and Billy Huffman—a former teacher at VES— and nurtured during his time at VES. Huffman says, “At VES you learn more than academics. You’re taught how to be a good person. You’re taught how to approach situations and do the right thing. It’s an important message.” In almost every interview, Huffman has been asked, “Why didn’t you just keep driving and leave?” Will said it never occurred to him not to stop. Others asked Huffman how he could live through the weight of this, being the driver. Huffman says everyone

comes into situations and you might think you are not prepared to deal with them. But we are “built to handle it.” He “simply applied the principles that he learned at VES, to do the right thing, handling the good and the bad.” Huffman chose to remain focused on his reaction to the accident and to the recovery for all involved, not dwelling on why it happened. “What is important is our reaction to situations and how we handle ourselves.” On the 10th anniversary of Honor and Integrity Week this February, Huffman was our guest speaker in Langhorne Memorial Chapel. While on campus, he reflected on the Honor Committee’s leadership role that continues today at VES—the tradition of signing the Honor Pledge as a community in Chapel, welcoming speakers on the topics of honor and integrity, and being proactive in promoting the importance of living with honor and integrity. He hopes that every student will learn from his experience and will forever embrace the values of honor and integrity.

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How the Challenge Works

Why “With the extraordinary experience being delivered at VES, we want to challenge those who love our school to show their support to the faculty, students and our historic campus,” said Henry Clarke, director of Development. “A generous group of donors has pledged $500,000 to The VES Endowment & Trust if at least 500 donors give on April 11. The value of these gifts will fundamentally change the VES Endowment and our school’s operating budget.”

What 1 Day By 11:59 pm on April 11

500 Donors Gifts of any size from any member of our constituency are encouraged.

$500,000 Gift Will be made to support The VES Endowment & Trust

Who Can Give? Anybody. Whether you have already given this year or not, please join us on April 11 with a gift of any size.

Does my gift that I have already made this year count in this challenge? No. If you have already made your gift, thank you. However, we are asking that, on April 11, you make a token gift to help us achieve our challenge goal.

If I have not yet made a gift to VES this year, can this count as my 2017-18 annual contribution? Absolutely!

What does my gift on this day do? Each person who makes a gift—whether it’s $1 or $50,000+— drives a $1,000 donation to The VES Endowment & Trust. We need 500 donors on this day to meet our $500,000 challenge.

Where does my gift go? You may designate your gift to your area of interest within The Fund for Virginia Episcopal School or The VES Endowment & Trust.

Who’s behind the challenge? A team of generous individuals has come together to make this challenge happen through their gifts.

May I give before the day? Yes, but only in one way. Please find the donation form and envelope at the center of this magazine. Mark your gift amount, make your designation and check the box #everyonegiVES to indicate you want your gift counted on April 11.

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Endowment Established to

Honor Female Faculty

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George ’18, Boyd ’21, Martha Terrell and Bill Burruss


Marion Farmer (back row center) with a championship tennis team

As my husband, Bill, and I read through the most recent Annual Report on Giving, we recognized an opportunity to create an endowment to support VES women,” said Martha Terrell Burruss, a 22-year history faculty member whose boys, George ’18 and Boyd ’21, attend VES. “Understandably there are funds recognizing revered male faculty, but none exist honoring female faculty. I began to reflect on the bright, energetic women I have had the privilege of working with—from Mike Berry, Marion Farmer, Kaye Watson, Geri Cecil, and Sarah Cuccio to the many dedicated, talented women here today—it’s clear to me that girls and women changed this institution dramatically and for the better.” The Burrusses chose to establish the Marion Love Farmer Fund for Faculty Compensation. Not only is Farmer among the longest-serving female faculty in VES history—teaching for 25 years from 1986 to 2011 when she retired—but also, said Martha Terrell, “She was a wonderful mentor to me, added great depth to the history curriculum, and enriched this community with her intellect and dry sense of humor. I had the privilege and pleasure of working closely with her for 15 years.” During her tenure, Farmer taught Russian History, regular and AP US History,

coached championship tennis teams and served as a valued faculty advisor and colleague. “Marion and her husband, Jim, were always very involved in the life of the school.” Bill shared that “last year was a great year in the stock market. Martha Terrell and I had some appreciated assets we wanted to give to VES to fund faculty salaries.” Martha Terrell added, “I am very appreciative of all the opportunities that VES has provided our sons. We know how the day-to-day interaction between faculty and students shape students’ lives. Faculty are the school’s most valuable resource and it is vital that we support them economically. The future health of the school depends on it.” The Burruss’ gift creates a seed for building a fully funded endowment to augment faculty salaries. “VES will always be grateful to Bill and Martha Terrell for their generosity and foresight in honoring Marion Farmer with a significant gift to The VES Endowment & Trust and for their friendship and service to the school for more than two decades,” said Henry Clarke, director of Development. “I would encourage everyone who loves Marion and appreciates the lessons she taught us to consider making a gift to the Marion Love Farmer Fund for Faculty Compensation, which will impact future generations of faculty in a positive way.”

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Save the Date SEPTEMBER 28 - 30 CELEBRATING THREE DECADES OF VES WOMEN

2018 Founders Day & Homecoming Weekend

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Remembering

Dr. Risher ’28 O

n November 3, 2017, at the age of 107, Virginia Episcopal School said goodbye to its oldest alumnus and devoted friend of the school, Dr. John Calhoun Risher ’28. He was an inspiration to our entire community and his 90-year association with VES is an irreplaceable link to our history. During Dr. Risher’s two years at VES, he fell in love with Lynchburg and vowed to return if he ever got the chance. He pursued his degrees at UVA where he played football; he then served in WWII. In 1954, Dr. Risher returned to Lynchburg where he made a career as an ear, nose and throat specialist and became a longtime statistician for the UVA football team. VES students and faculty remember with fondness Dr. Risher’s knack for storytelling and good humor, as well as celebrating many of his birthdays in the dining hall. Members of the William King Society also remember his firm handshake and witty quip as he welcomed them to the “Old Guard” during reunion weekend each summer. Headmaster Tommy Battle notes that “the most memorable aspect of Dr. Risher was his quiet, humble and willing presence in the VES and Lynchburg communities for nearly a century.”

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G R AT I T U D E I N G I V I N G The reasons for giving are many—connection to a specific place or experience, desire to help others, or support of a personal passion. Often gifts play an integral part in offsetting the costs of school operations or further enhancing the student experience.

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urrent parents Dr. Peter and Nancy O’Brien, of Lynchburg, Va., have no shortage of commitment and passion when it comes to VES. They have been particularly engaged with the VES Cross Country and Track programs over four years. The O’Brien’s interest in the programs is a natural pairing of Pete’s years competing in cross country at the collegiate level, and the fact that their daughter, Kate ’18, and son, Daniel ’20, have honed their running talents and contributed mightily to the VES teams during their time here. Daniel—the fastest sophomore in the state of Virginia—won the VISAA state cross-country title and helped the VES boys team take second place at states—both firsts for VES in the 52-year history of the VISAA State meet. He also was named All-Area Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year.

Kate has continued to post personal bests in her meets, and in January earned her best time indoors for the 1600m and the 3200m, for which she set a new VES school record. The O’Brien’s financial support has given our athletes the tools to compete each day, including team shirts and warm-ups, and a branded team tent. Beyond their monetary contributions to the programs, both Pete and Nancy have been unwaveringly generous with their time. Pete acts as an assistant coach—sharing his amazing experience with VES runners—and Nancy never misses a race. When asked what spurred their support to the team, Nancy said simply, “We love being part of the excitement! Giving what we can to the team is our way of saying ‘Thank you!’”

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Virginia Summer Arts Collaborative a Virginia Episcopal School Summer Academy Lynchburg, VA

The opportunity to further discover yourself as an artist begins here.​ At the Virginia Summer Arts Collaborative— a summer training program in the arts offered through Virginia Episcopal School— collaborate with other artists like you and learn from a distinguished faculty of performing artists and musicians. Surrounded by talent, creativity and expert coaching, you will hone your skills, expand your capabilities and explore new techniques and ideas, while having lots of summer fun.

2018 Dates ​

July 1 - 13 Our residential program is designed for artists in grades 8 - 12 and our day program for students in grades 5 - 7. We offer three areas of focus with opportunity to pursue your specific artistic interests:​ 1. Theatre Conservatory Musical Theatre* | Acting | Technical Theatre 2. Music Studio Singer-Songwriter | Vocal Performance Instrumental Performance | Rock Band 3. Film Production


NETWORK WITH FELLOW ALUMS ON

VESCONNECT Join VESConnect.org—our web-based news, event and networking platform dedicated to serving our alumni. It’s a safe, secure online community to build your personal and professional networks.

CONNECT

MENTOR

EXPAND

ENGAGE

INFORM

online with former classmates, faculty and graduates.

and coach VES graduates throughout their careers.

career connections with VES alums. Post a job or look for one.

with VES news, social media feeds and event info all in one place.

your network, keeping them up to date on all that you’re doing.

vesconnect.org

JOINING IS EASY! Activate your account by syncing your LinkedIn or Facebook page or create a new sign in. Go to VESConnect.org today.


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MARK YOUR CALENDARS!

A generous group of donors has pledged $500,000 to The VES Endowment & Trust if at least 500 donors give to the school on April 11. Join us for this exciting event!

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