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a publication from Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart

Mes Amies spring

2012 Issue \ 5


The Biennial Career Day Event

Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart hosts the biennial Career Day event to educate students about college and career opportunities, and to help them connect their high school experiences with alumnae who have preceded them. “I was a limits-tester,” admitted The Honorable Margaret J. Mullen ’73. As the Presiding Judge of the Law Division of the 19th Judicial Circuit Court, Mullen opened her keynote address at Career Day 2010 thanking her alma mater for playing such a pivotal role in her life. “ Woodlands nurtured me along. Woodlands is a big part of who I am today and what I do.”

margaret j. mullen ’73

She added, “Take whatever God gave you and work on those strengths. Become the person you want to be.” The articulate and accomplished Judge Mullen set aside her usual courtroom demeanor to share a lively perspective on her life journey. “At Woodlands, there was a high level of commitment to the written word and the art of the written word,” said Mullen. Nicknamed “Booty” during her formative years, Mullen recounted humorous moments in her years at Woodlands. “I think I first learned leadership by taking students across the bridge to Barat to the nun’s cloister to slide down four stories of the fire escape.”

Strong independence blended with uncommon energy and enthusiasm characterized Kate Bateman ’04 when she was a Woodlands student. She carried these traits to the University of Michigan where, as an undergraduate, she worked with other student engineers to build and drive a solar car cross country.

“ Woodlands is an incredibly challenging environment,” Bateman affirmed. “At Woodlands, all the teachers really want you to succeed.” Bateman also volunteers with Living Water International, an organization whose mission is to provide clean sustainable water to communities in developing countries. She’ll utilize her engineering skills to build wells for the residents. “Get involved in something you are passionate about,” Bateman told students. “This will set you apart.”

“My passion was always the social life of the school,” said a smiling Kate Hartman ’00. “I love to talk.”

Susan Brennan Morrison ’69 walked the halls of Woodlands the day before her Career Day closing keynote address. She remembered the opportunities to be a leader and how “we valued ourselves and our work.”

Hartman took her gift of gab, along with sage advice from her parents, and shaped a successful career in public relations. “Dreams don’t work unless you do,” her parents told her. Hartman heeded their words and now enjoys partnering with celebrities in telling the story of CocaCola’s glacéau line of beverages to the world market in her role as Global Public Relations Senior Manager. kate hartman ’00

Maintaining that her greatest accomplishment is her six-month-old daughter Charlotte, Hartman advised students to,

“Surround yourselves with good people, family, friends, and faith. Life is short. Take chances. Live your life.”

kate bateman ’04

She shared with attendees her experiences as a Colorado-based drilling engineer with Shell Oil Company, adding “Engineers really make a difference.”

Morrison believes the support she received at Woodlands fostered the self confidence she needed to be a force in the business world. Ultimately graduating with honors from University of California San Diego while simultaneously working two jobs, Morrison entered and then excelled in the world of advertising. Through her involvement with the Women’s Sports Foundation and her friendship with tennis icon Billy Jean King, Morrison found both her voice and an opportunity to give back. About Women Moving Millions, another philanthropic passion, Morrison says, “There are countless opportunities for talented young women to go out and make a difference.” susan brennan morrison ’69

“I am finally doing something I love, and I have become my best self by giving back,” Morrison affirmed. “I feel I am just getting started.” Her parting advice to students: “Hold fast to dreams, and live the values you are learning here at Woodlands Academy.”



Orchestral Music Harmonizes with Service

Around the Halls

i’ve been living in the jungles of sulawesi in a small, 40-family community called Masihulan. My group and I trekked into the jungle to spend two nights there before we left our host families for the cultural capital of Jakarta. One night, I asked one of the guides if he would take my friend Liza and me hunting for kuskus (an insanely cute native marsupial that my host mom made me cook over and over so I could show my American family....). He agreed, and we eagerly set off that night with our handmade bows and arrows.

Seniors Gab ri ela Ca rr illo as Maria and Cat he ri ne Wanand i as Anita led a brilliant cast in a bring-down-th e-house performance of West Side Story.

Packing her bags for Cultural Exchange Camp at the Sacred Heart School for Girls in Taiwan is Anna Deberry ’14 (left). Emma Rodriguez ’13 (right) readies her passport for a month of study at the Sacred Heart School in Melbourne, Australia.

The Academy of Our Lady in Waukegan and St. Malachy School in Chicago welcomed the Woodlands Academy Orchestra on March 16 for performances of such musical favorites as themes from Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings, and “It’s a Small World After All.” After the concerts, the grammar school-age students delighted in having a turn at playing some of the instruments.

“There is such a happy buzz in our school thanks to you and the wonderful Woodlands musicians!” wrote Ms. Sandra Prez, Principal of Academy of Our Lady. Denise Dobiasch and eleven other students from Sacré Coeur Vienna spent two weeks at Woodlands this past March as part of a five-year-old international Sacred Heart exchange between the schools.

Emily’s initiative and thoughtful planning brought this musical project to life. Congratulations to Emily, Mrs. Laurel Kaiser, and the talented Woodlands Academy Orchestra.

Jenny Sullivan Sanford ’80 visits Woodlands Academy jenny sullivan sanford ’80

Kathleen Byrne Fischer ’03 married Cody Fischer on August 20, 2011. The couple currently resides in France.

We sat on mossy tree roots in the inky black darkness, watching fireflies compete with phosphorescent mushrooms to be our only source of light. Our guide, Pache, walked quietly around making kuskus calls. I was ready with my bow and arrow when he politely asked us to switch on our headlamps because a snake had bitten him on his bare foot.

’s is year ting th Celebra tive of Crea theme elf S t and Intellec icago h C sion, Expres list y nove myster mara a N s Mc France dents tu s ted captiva tation presen with a on in educati on her and schools all-girl on. ing ficti on writ

blending her passion for music with her commitment to service yielded for junior emily bartusiak a stunningly successful orchestra outreach to two local grammar schools. And, for Emily, this Gold Award project earns for her the highest recognition a Girl Scout can achieve.

Maria Jesus Berrios (left) from the Sacred Heart School in Santiago, Chile, attended classes at Woodlands during a six-week exchange and stayed with Charlotte McMenamin-Walshe ‘14 and her family.

Hero in the Jungle

It was amazing that my little WA ring was able to help save Pache’s life, and my mind is blown that the jungles of Indonesia can be influenced by Woodlands in Lake Forest... Liza and I had to sprint (well, fall over roots and crash into trees) to keep up with Pache, who was feverishly running back to camp, but he still outpaced us. We came upon him collapsed at the base of a tree, so we decided to tie a restriction band on his leg to slow the poison’s progression. He started out for camp again, but had to stop shortly because he was half delirious. He confided that he was scared because his grandmother had died of the same snake bite he had received, and asked if we had any silver. Apparently, in folk medicine, silver represents purity and goodness, and is used to draw out many poisons. Then I remembered my class ring! I yanked it off my finger and gave it to him so he could rub it on his foot and “draw out” the snake venom.

Julie O’Donnell Murphy ’78 and husband Jim of Winnetka are pictured with children Jimmy, Julie, and Matty.

Julie and Greg Hermsen are pictured with daughters lauren ’11 (left), Amanda ’13, and Alyssa.

It seemed to do him some good, because he was able to make it back to camp and collapse, delirious, on the ground. We all stayed up for hours that night praying he wouldn’t die, and when the morning came, he washed my ring of blood and gave it back to me with many thanks and apologies. It was amazing that my little WA ring was able to help save Pache’s life, and my mind is blown that the jungles of Indonesia can be influenced by Woodlands in Lake Forest, Illinois.

Congratulat ions to In g r id Watts ’12, named Natio nal Merit® Finalist by th e National Merit® Scho larship Corporation. She is also a member of the 2012 Dai ly Herald Lake County Academic Te am.

Hannah Wilson is a 2011 graduate who has taken a gap year of study and travel. this version is edited from her original email.

Carlette McMullan ’76 and John Gibbons of Chicago are pictured with daughter Madeleine.

In town

for a speaking engagement, jenny sullivan sanford ’80 visited Woodlands Academy to say hello to old friends and autograph a copy of her bestselling memoir Staying True.

welcomed by gerry grossman and madonna edmunds.

“‘Staying True’ isn’t a book full of recriminations; it’s the portrait of a smart, steadfast woman who found herself in a terrible situation,” says The New York Times review of her book. A graduate of Georgetown University, Jenny worked for six years at a Wall Street investment banking firm before moving with her then-husband, Mark Sanford, to South Carolina, where she managed his successful political campaigns for both Congress and Governor. She is focused now on spending time with her four teenage sons on Sullivan’s Island in South Carolina.

A Special Thank You rformances Following pe ul Riverside at the beautif w York City, Church in Ne cope, under both Kaleidos of Mrs. the direction wski, and Elizabeth Kuro der the Microscope, un ri ela direction of Gab , were Ca rr illo ’12 First Place awarded Gold e World Awvards in th e Festival Strides Heritag competition.

Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart expresses deep and sincere gratitude to Maureen Hogan Lang ’56, who has served as President of our Alumnae Board for the past three years. An inspiration to all, Maureen exemplifies a life lived in love and in the values of Sacred Heart. In her role as President, Maureen has greatly expanded the involvement of alumnae at Woodlands Academy. She has both welcomed new members of the Alumnae Association and celebrated reunions with alums of many years. Maureen’s gracious manner and passionate devotion to Woodlands Academy have helped to forge the interconnected community that is our Alumnae Association today.

Woodlands is grateful for Maureen’s devoted service.

Pam Hutmacher Curtis ’03 married Jason Curtis from Leicester, MA in Milwaukee on July 23, 2011. Among her wedding party were Woodlands alumnae Haleigh Johnson ’03, Meggie Wehmer ’03, Kate Hutmacher ’95, and Alex Stewart ’03. Woodlands alumnae present but not pictured were Maureen Callahan ’03, Alice McKeever ’03 and Emily Reidy ’03. The couple resides in Milwaukee.

Alumnae NEWS UPDATES susan trowbridge ’59 is now Broker Associate at Callaway Henderson Sotheby’s International Realty. jeanette stanhaus ’67 writes, “ Woodlands established an academic foundation for me that continued to Northwestern University BA and The University of Chicago MA. Then I started my advertising agency in 1974-1994.” Jeanette’s recent novel, In Times of Trouble, is available on Amazon as a paperback and an eBook. lisa broscheid farag ’77 lives in the San Francisco area. She and her husband own a small coffee farm in the mountains of Panama and grow gourmet specialty coffee. They love California and make it back to Europe several times a year. megan carroll ’85 writes, “ While keeping my Arts Law practice, I began full-time contract work for the Irish International Immigrant Center in Boston. I am enjoying the travel, interaction with British, Irish, and American diplomats and learning about emerging industries.” Megan resides in Massachusetts with children Aisling, 14, and Eoin, 12.

jorie allen grassie ’86 and husband Colin reside in London with sons Alasdair, 16, Euan, 9, Gregor, 10, and Lachlan, 19. Jorie writes, “I was recently appointed Director of Heritage Bag Company. (We are hoping to go global in five years.) I am also a very keen hunter.” sally canfield ’89 writes, “I’m currently the Deputy Chief of Staff to Senator Marco Rubio of Florida. Because Marco is a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, I still get to work on HIV/AIDS and other development issues since they are funded out of that committee.” mary gillard anderson ’94 and husband Eric are proud parents of daughter Catherine Killeen born December 27, 2011. Catherine joins siblings Elle and Patrick. Mary is the Vice President of the Woodlands Academy Alumnae Board. karen fincutter ’95 is Senior Manager of External Communications and Media Relations at The Boeing Company.

molly keating ’95 is an education consultant at Model Metrics, a Salesforce. com company in Chicago, and Molly is a member of the Woodlands Academy Alumnae Board. betsy o’brien ’95 In January 2012 Betsy moved to San Francisco from New York to join J.P. Morgan Chase commercial banking group. Betsy, who earned a BA in English and an MBA in Finance from Fordham University, serves as Treasurer on the board of a NY-based arts organization, Dancing in the Streets. katherine bodoh ’97 is Director of Industry Relations and Events at Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company. emily meyer ’01 is a Lead Residential Councilor and Mental Health Professional at Rice Child and Family Center in Chicago. haleigh johnson ’03 currently is the Donor Relations Officer, Special Programs and Stewardship at Marquette University. malory khalifa ’03 is Head of Production at Animated Story Boards in Europe.

molly laurain ’03 is a commercial real estate sales professional working at CBRE, the world’s largest commercial real estate services firm. She specializes in tenant representation work focusing on the Downtown and Midtown South areas of New York City. kerry o’hare ’03 graduates in June from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. emma lind ’05 Following her graduation from Harvard, Emma completed two years with Teach for America in Hughes, Arkansas and now teaches math at Achievement First Brooklyn High School, Brooklyn, NY. mi sung jung ’07 writes, “I am preparing for my first debut single in Korea, and it will be released here sometime this month. This happened by giving our music tracks to rappers and girl/boy bands in Korea.” Mi Sung looks forward to a career as a musician/producer.


BMO Harris Honors Woodlands Academy With $100,000 Donation Executive Vice President, Retail Banking, BMO Harris Bank. “We knew Woodlands Academy was a tremendous academic institution with an outstanding reputation. However, as we met with some of the school officials and saw the passion and poise of the students in trying to unite these properties together, we quickly appreciated just how special Woodlands is.”

On May 9, the Woodlands Academy school community filled the Chapel on what would have been an ordinary Wednesday morning homeroom. There was, however, nothing ordinary about what transpired. With deep gratitude, Head of School Gerald Grossman accepted a $100,000 donation from BMO Harris Bank in honor of Woodlands’ educational

Save the Date for these upcoming events 09–07 10:30am


mission and the opportunity to expand that mission by the Barat property acquisition. The money is designated for the conversion of the former Barat campus to Woodlands Academy use. “During the course of the project, we learned a lot about Woodlands Academy,” said Chris McComish

10–05 to

Alumnae Reunion Weekend


Alumnae Decade of 2000 Downtown Network Event



A BMO Harris Bank affiliate recently concluded the sale of the former Barat College which will result in a gift of the property to Woodlands Academy.

11–08 to

Nearly $325,000 was raised for Woodlands Academy at the 39th annual Congé. Over 180 parents, alums and friends gathered at The Glen View Club in Golf to celebrate and support the mission and students of Woodlands Academy. Under the direction of auctioneer Lance Walker, guests battled one another during the live auction for items ranging from Chicago Cubs Skybox tickets, Bruce Springsteen concert tickets, a Napa Valley wine experience, A Blackhawks Skybox experience, and even premier parking for their daughter. Many also raised paddles in support of scholarships, which garnered over $120,000 for students in need of financial assistance. Many thanks to chairs Mary Swift, mother of Mia ’10 and Isabella ’12, Jeanmarie Olson, mother of Bunny ’14, and Celeste Denton, mother of Tatum ’10 and Elizabeth ’12, and their extraordinary team of volunteers for organizing a marvelous event, all in support of Woodlands students!

Fall Play Performances



Mass of the Holy Spirit and Flag Ceremony

Several members of the Woodlands Academy Board of Trustees were on hand to see McCornish present the gift to the school.

Congé 2012

Mater Ceremony and Reception

All Saints Liturgy


11–13 6:30pm

11–16 10:30am

Admission Open House for Prospective Students

St. Rose Philippine Duchesne Prayer Service and Sacred Heart Awards

The extraordinary women behind Congé 2012 (left to right): Chairs mary swift, jeanmarie olson, and celeste denton.

inside the numbers The Student Services Center at Woodlands Academy Non-Profit Org U.S. Postage

Number of College Skills classes between January of junior year and January of senior year


Increase in office space in the new Learning Program space

Square feet of student work space in the Resource Room and Activity Center




Average number of colleges that visit Woodlands Academy each year




New dance/yoga studio

The NCYFS (National Children and Youth Fitness Study) shows that only half of girls in grades 5 through 12 are achieving at least the minimum weekly requirement of exercise

Permit No. 93 Lake Forest, IL 60045

3 Beds in the new infirmary


Increase in Fitness Room square footage

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Mes Amies Newsletter  

Biannual newsletter for Woodlands Academy.