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Summer 2001

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On Campus




Alumni and Development News

Class Notes






     Alice Peterson ’26 of Schuylerville, NY, died on January 28. Initially a music major, she later switched to psychology. She traveled throughout the northern Adirondacks as a psychologist for the New York State Department of Mental Hygiene. In 1929, she became a school psychologist in the Utica, NY, school system, where she served for 40 years. Alice is remembered as a devoted aunt, a passionate gardener, and a member of myriad community organizations. She is survived by nine nieces and nephews.

     Evelyn Staples Lamphier ’27 of Bennington, VT, died on April 5, 2000. A music major, she enjoyed a lengthy career as a church organist and pianist. She volunteered for many civic organizations, including Girl Scouts and the American Red Cross. She is survived by a son, two daughters, and several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

     Mary Roberts Teare ’28 of Denver, CO, died on April 2. An English major, she went on to complete a master’s in social work from Syracuse University. Mary taught English in Saratoga and Schenectady counties during the 1930s, and later was a social worker for the Schenectady Department of Social Services. She also taught creative writing to adults. An energetic and avid volunteer, she served the Schenectady Symphony, AAUW, her local PTA, and other groups. For Skidmore she volunteered in may roles, including class president and class secretary for decades. Writing was her lifelong avocation. Many of Mary’s short stories were published in national magazines. She also authored several unpublished novels. She is survived by a daughter and a granddaughter.

     Virginia Reynolds Adams ’31 of Sarasota, FL, died on March 10. An art major, she also graduated from the Boston School of Design. She was a cofounder of the West Hartford, MA, Art League and a member of her Presbyterian church. She is survived by two sons, three grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren; husband Ben predeceased her.

     Barbara Dantzler ’32 of San Francisco, CA, died on June 16, 2000. An art major, she served as chief assistant to the president of the California university system for 27 years. Barbara later became a private entrepreneur, operating her own tax and venture capital consulting service. She especially enjoyed attending the symphony, museum, and other cultural venues in the San Francisco area. She is survived by a nephew.

     Janet Miller Robinson ’33 of Chapel Hill, NC, died on May 9. Graduating with a degree in English, Janet worked as an executive secretary on Wall Street until 1938, when, with husband Ormsbee, she ran summer work camps for the Experiment for International Living. She also directed Camp Felicia, a “fresh air” camp for children from New York City settlement houses. Later in her career, Janet worked as assistant director of public relations at Bard College, assumed a similar position at Trinity College, and served as executive director of the RPI executive training program at Hartford, CT. A tireless Skidmore volunteer, she served as alumni trustee, president of the alumni board, and class reunion fund chair, as well as in a host of related roles. Her survivors include daughter Heather Robinson Thorp ’60, a son, four grandchildren including Caitlin Robinson ’00, niece Carolyn Miller Knutson ’56, and nephew William Ladd ’83. Husband Ormsbee predeceased her.

     Elizabeth Goodrich Fry ’34 of Fort Lauderdale, FL, died on March 19. An English major, she was an accomplished sculptor and graphic artist. She is survived by two sons, three daughters, 13 grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren. Her husband, Thomas, predeceased her .

     Margaret Phillips Kellerman ’34 of Rockville, MD, died in November 1994. Husband Karl predeceased her. There are no known survivors.

     Mary Keeler Lawrence ’36 of Los Angeles, CA, died in February. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English. A dedicated alumna, she established the Mary Keeler Lawrence Scholarship Fund for students needing financial assistance. She is survived by two sons; husband George predeceased her.

     Irene Shine Judge ’36 of Brooklyn, NY, died on March 18, 2000. Irene spent two years at Skidmore, finishing her bachelor’s degree at Teacher’s College, Columbia University, in 1937. She went on to earn a master’s at Columbia and became a nutrition professor at Pratt Institute. She also worked as head of the experimental kitchen at United Fruit Company in Boston, MA. A dedicated alumna, she was a member of the Skidmore 50 Plus Club. She is survived by her husband, William.

     Edna F. Bullard ’37 of Washington, DC, died in January 1992. She earned a bachelor’s degree in history at Skidmore. There are no known survivors.

     Ruth Feinberg Bergman ’37 of Oceanside, NY, died in December 1999. A business major at Skidmore, she served as executive director of personnel at B. Altman’s department store for many years and was active in civic and cultural affairs. She is survived by a daughter, three sons, a brother, and two grandchildren.

     Dorothea Outt Calkins ’38 of Hampton City, VA, died in April 1990. Her husband, Luther, predeceased her. There are no known survivors.

     Babette Judson Egger ’38 of Bern, Switzerland, died on January 30. She majored in psychology. She is survived by a daughter and four sons; husband Josef predeceased her.

     Mildred Harr Davis ’41 of Palm Beach, FL, died on March 13. She served as president of the board of directors for the Memorial Center for Women in West Orange, NJ and the Sarah Ward Day Nursery in Newark. She is survived by her husband, Arthur, two daughters, including Virginia Davis ’69, a son, and seven grandchildren.

     Gertrude Haas Friedman ’42 of Sante Fe, NM, died on May 24. An art major, she later studied with figure sculptor Max Kalish. She had a 30-year career in advertising and marketing in the Cleveland, OH, area, where was treasurer and president of the Skidmore alumni club of Cleveland. In 1979, Gertrude retired to Sante Fe, NM, where she created ceramic and bronze sculptures in her home studio. She exhibited in major galleries in New Mexico and also volunteered at the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian. In July 2000, 19 of Gertrude’s monolithic bronze abstract sculptures were chosen by the Los Almos County municipal government for an “art in public places” exhibit. Just before her death she agreed to a long-term loan of three of her sculptures to Skidmore’s Tang Museum. She is survived by John VanNess. Her husband, Adolph, predeceased her.

     Grace Rosen Magill ’43 of Sarasota, FL, died on February 21. Grace graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sociology and wrote for the Skidmore News. She raised four sons and enjoyed volunteering for community organizations. She served as a PTA president, library board member, Braille transcriber, and Democratic Party organizer. She is survived by husband Richard, four sons, five grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

     Priscilla St. Clair Green ’45 of Wilsonville, OR, died on March 8. She majored in English. She was a volunteer for the American Red Cross and Junior League. She is survived by her husband, Burl, three sons, and two grandchildren.

     Kathryn Fehr Martin ’45 of Kailua Kona, HI, also died on March 8. A former public relations director for Marylhurst College and the YMCA of Portland, OR, she also served as board president for the Portland Chamber Orchestra Association and board director for the New Rose Theater. In 1980, she moved to Hawaii, where she became president of the Kona Outdoor Circle, a community improvement organization. She is survived by her husband, William, two sons, and a daughter.

     Mary Forgham Soule ’45 of Englewood, NJ, died on January 2. A biology major, she worked as a research assistant for the U.S. government’s Manhattan Project in Rochester, NY, and Harvard Medical School. She served as a board member for Planned Parenthood. She particularly enjoyed playing flute in orchestral and chamber music groups. She is survived by her husband, William, three sons, and a daughter.

     Sally Coombs Garvin ’46 of Avon, CT, died on February 12. An sociology major, Sally was a well-known civic volunteer whose work for the Avon Historical Trust, town library, board of education, and Red Cross earned her numerous awards; she received a Citizen of the Year Award in 1979. An accomplished seamstress, she often lent her skills to local opera and theatrical companies. She especially enjoyed cultivating gardenias and was a long time president of the Avon Garden Club. She is survived by four daughters, six grandsons, and a brother.

     Carolyn Miles Noonan ’48 of Ocala, FL, died on December 20, 1999. Active in numerous athletic clubs on campus, she maj0red in physical education, which she later taught for over 20 years in the Galway, NY, school system. She also took on many civic volunteer roles, serving as president of the local fire auxiliary and as a physical fitness instructor for adult education programs. She is survived by two sons and sister-in-law Margery Maddock Miles ’40. Her husband, Robert, predeceased her.

     Donna Bazelon Miller ’49 of Tiburon, CA, died on February 16 in a car accident in Johannesburg, South Africa. After graduating from Skidmore with a degree in art, Donna became an internationally recognized ceramic artist. She is survived by three sons, a sister, a brother, and 12 grandchildren.

     Ruth Albers ’50 of Schenectady, NY, died on March 7. A history major, she completed her bachelor’s at Tufts University. She is survived by a son and two daughters.

     Suzanne Gieseler Bronner ’50 of Delray, FL, died on March 6 of pancreatic cancer. She majored in psychology and art and subsequently worked in the publishing industry, where she managed promotional efforts for firms in New York City and Florida. She was active in political and school organizations and especially enjoyed pursuing her artwork. She is survived by a daughter, a son, and several nieces and nephews.

     Mary Lattin Chalmers ’50 of Sarasota, FL, also died on March 6. She was active in her Episcopal church in Williamsville, NY, for many years. She is survived by her husband, John, three daughters, two sons, a sister, and three grandsons.

     Penny Palermo Allan ’56 of Quogue, NY, died on December 19, 2000. A French major, Penny earned a master’s in elementary education from Long Island University in 1985. She was a teacher at the Spence School in New York City. She is survived by husband John and a son.

     Martha Vega Leaf ’71 of East Windsor, NJ, died on December 26, 2000. She majored in psychology at Skidmore, subsequently earning a master’s degree at Rutgers University. A food programs specialist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, she later became a personnel analyst for the New Jersey Department of Human Resources. Martha was a member of the Hispanic Women’s Leadership Institute. She is survived by husband W. Alan and two daughters, including Paola Manzo Sowell ’94.

     Deborra Deeb ’85 of Glens Falls, NY, died on December 1, 2000. Deborra graduated from University Without Walls with a bachelor’s in business and management. There are no known survivors.


     Former Skidmore professor Stephen Prokopoff, a museum director and curator, died on March 28. He was 71 and had homes in Iowa City and Paris. Born in Chicago, he studied art and music at the University of California at Berkeley and earned a Ph.D. in art history from New York University in 1962. Most recently Prokopoff was director of the University of Iowa Museum of Art. He also held positions at contemporary-art museums in Philadelphia, Chicago, and Boston. He focused his attention on emerging or neglected artists and specialized in comics, folk and outsider art, graphic design, and photography.

     From 1961 to 1967 Prokopoff taught art history at Skidmore. In 1970 as part of its Architecture Worth Saving in New York State series, the New York State Council on the Arts published The Nineteenth-century Architecture of Saratoga Springs by Prokopoff and Skidmore colleague Joan Siegfried.

     He is survived by his father, wife Lois Craig, two sons, three stepchildren, and one grandchild.


© 2001 Skidmore College