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Summer 2002

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On campus

Faculty focus


Arts on view

Alumni affairs
and development

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Barbara Crossman Bell

I’ve had the opportunity to see the work of several former art majors, who have done quite well this year in the tough competition of the East Coast arts scene:

Betsy Mallory MacDermid had a show called Intersections at the 100 Pearl Gallery in Hartford, CT, this spring.

Beth Urdang Ziegler’s gallery on Newbury Street in Boston held a show of Margo Margolis’s recent paintings this past winter. The painting entitled Red Ears, which graced the gallery’s announcement, shows a certain Asian, calligraphic quality—very lovely!

Jondra Nolan’s The Lunar Series was exhibited at the Art Resource Transfer Inc. in NYC in the winter. The work Jondra selected for the cover of the exhibit brochure is a very evocative but challenging pastel piece.

I’m still recovering from triple-bypass surgery in April, and hope to get back to my watercolors and working on my book.


Lise Bang-Jensen

Add “classmate finder” to the list of research skills of Susan Glover Godlewski, chief reference librarian at the Boston Public Library. She didn’t even have to leave the BPL to find Linda Zieper, who had organized a conference there on virtual reference. “A creation of lonely librarians who noticed that fewer patrons were seeking their help researching tough questions,” virtual reference lets librarians meet information seekers directly—on-line. Linda is art librarian at UMass-Dartmouth and editor of the Art Libraries Society of North America newsletter. Susan previously was associate director of libraries for the Art Institute of Chicago, where she curated a collection on surrealism; see www.artic.edu/reynolds. After moving to Boston, she worked as collections curator for the Thoreau Institute in Lincoln, where one of the “high points” was giving a private tour to President Bill Clinton and wife Hillary at the grand opening. Susan lives in the South End with her husband and 17-year-old son, Reed. She makes regular trips to Saratoga Springs where her mother-in-law lives.

Dana Warner Fisher runs a middle-school library in Crawfordsville, IN. She also creates art quilts. Husband Jim is a theater professor at Wabash College and author of Theater of Tony Kushner: Living Past Hope, which he is revising to include Homebody/ Kabul, a show now playing in NYC. Dana’s son Dan graduated from Denison in 2001, and daughter Anna is a theater major at Kenyon.

Deb BozBeckian Raptopoulos hosted a mini-reunion in March, drawing 16 classmates from the Boston area—which turned out to encompass New Hampshire, Vermont, Albany (NY) and Phoenix, AZ. Laurie Uhl, who teaches in Phoenix, has been living temporarily in Boston. Not only is Deb a gracious hostess and superb cook, she displayed a talent for drawing out classmates as we each discussed how we had changed since graduating from college.

Shelly Waxman missed reunion last June; she was moving to Washington, DC, to join the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network. “We are very busy now with the war on terrorism, tracking down money-laundering matters involving terrorist funds,” writes Shelly, a lawyer who spent 18 years as a casino industry expert on money laundering and other compliance issues. In her new position with the government, she notes, “I deal with some of the issues that I studied as a government major so long ago.” Shelly, who bought a home on Logan Circle, describes herself as “a happy city dweller.”

Marty Seem Banghart says the events of September 11 have affected her career. “Things have taken on a new seriousness,” observes the Whitehall, MD, musician. “I am programming my music to reflect that sentiment. We had a concert called Music for Remembrance, Peace, and Freedom; it was the most moving of our concerts yet.”

Becky Shirtz—a controller for a manufacturing company—and her friend Patrick bicycled in Bordeaux last July, went to New Orleans in October, and then took what is now their annual long weekend in Beaune, France, for the wine action at the Hospice.

Remember: please send me your latest e-mail address, and I’ll send you a longer “classmates only” version of this column.


Nancy McNiff

Nancy Fisher Endemann teaches physical education in the Mattituck-Cutchogue School District in Suffolk County, NY. Daughter Amy graduated from the University of Virginia in May.

Kirstie Anderson Wilson missed Reunion because she was attending a nursing refresher course in preparation to returning to nursing. As of June, she and husband Dean have been married 30 years. In May daughter Jaime gave birth to their first grandchild, Max. Son Brett graduated from UMass last year with a degree in English.


Elizabeth Raff Nace


Beth Chiquoine

Margo Peter Geddie is a senior vice president with Salomon Smith Barney in Houston. Daughter Ashley is a freshman at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Two years ago Margo married John Geddie, a lawyer, and inherited stepchildren Sophie, a sophomore at the University of Texas, and Matthew, who is in the fourth grade. Her family recently acquired an interest in a small plane because John and Sophie love to fly. Margo also caught the bug and has now logged six hours of flight training. The whole family, she says, “is having a ball in the sky!”

Sally Remick Colacicco is the reading specialist at Cabin John Middle School in Potomac, MD. Daughter Elizabeth is a sophomore at Gettysburg College; daughter Emma is a junior in high school; and son Paul is in eighth grade. Sally regularly sees Debbie Bottomly Nelson, who resides in Olney, MD, and Susan Doran Weitzmann, who lives in nearby Cockeysville.

Catherine Stroup proudly writes that because her birthday is in February, she is probably one of the first of our classmates to “hit the big 50!” She marked the occasion by spending a long weekend at the Grove Park Inn and Spa in Asheville, NC, with friends. This included a daylong visit to the nearby Biltmore Estate and winery. Catherine heartily recommends a Swedish massage, pedicure, and mineral bath to help forget the years!

Jean Wadhams Geller enjoys her life in California. Married for 18 years, she has three wonderful daughters, including a recent college graduate. Her middle daughter is currently preparing to select a college, and although Jean suggested Skidmore, she would really prefer to keep her closer to home. Jean’s mother is Anne Schaaff Wadhams ’50, so they wear yellow and toast one another at the start of the summer. Jean is an ob-gyn nurse practitioner and teaches classes for three universities. She recently retired as a sexual assault nurse examiner when one of her daughters complained that her mother’s “jaded view of the world was impacting her ability to date.” She’d love to hear news of other nurses.

After graduation Janine Stover moved to NYC where she worked in TV and film production and became a script supervisor. Then she moved to Toronto, Canada, where she continued to work, married a set decorator, and had two beautiful kids. Fed up with the cold, her family moved to Sanibel Island, FL, and built a dream home. Janine continued to work in the film industry, commuting to Miami for work. She opened up a French Home Accessory store on Sanibel Island, which kept her more than busy and required traveling to France to see suppliers. Life in the fast, modern world helped end her marriage. Three years later Janine married a Frenchman and moved to France. His job with Deloitte Touche gave her the opportunity to live in Hong Kong and Japan, where she currently resides. Her kids have learned three languages and are very happy. She no longer works but enjoys taking courses and learning about Japanese culture. Janine often thinks of those great four years at Skidmore. A theater major, she says she learned to “never give up, and try to enjoy as much as possible. It certainly worked for me.” She recently saw Douglas Gray ’73 and his wife in Tokyo.

Kathryn Vought Reinhardt and her husband, Will, are studying grape varieties and working with Cornell Cooperative Extension to establish an experimental vineyard on their property along Lake Champlain in the Adirondacks.

Claire Simonelli attended a birthday party for Denise Marcil in CT. She also stays in touch with Susan “Sam” McLaren Ragan-Sittler, who lives in New Jersey, and recently spent the evening at the Economics Club Dinner with Marilyn Kelly in Chicago.

Nancy Watkins Lanzoni has been with ABN AMRO Bank in NYC for 16 years and is now a group VP, managing the lending portfolio for overseas multinationals with subsidiaries in the U.S. She and her team have just survived another restructuring. Her commute from Old Greenwich, CT, to NYC is one hour, which provides napping time before evenings with twins Ben and Will, who are 8 and “act like Energizer bunnies.” Nancy lives around the corner from Claire Simonelli.


Noreen P. Reilly


Ingeborg Hegemann Clark

Anestis Symeonides finds life at the U.S. Embassy in Athens—where she is senior Greek political analyst—very different after September 11. She observes that Greek reaction to the terrorist attacks has angered many Americans, particularly those of Greek extraction, making the political climate “neither agreeable nor cordial.” But Anestis’s daughters Alexia, 14, and Anastasia, 7, are doing well at American Community School in Athens. “Alexia has developed into an adept creative writer, with a bagful of school distinctions to prove it. Anastasia is a firecracker, a bundle of energy that taxes our endurance daily.” Anestis, whose schedule prevented her from attending her 25th reunion last year, “misses Saratoga terribly.”

In April Mathew Rosen’s wife, Joanna, gave birth to Georgia Ruth, who joins sister Bailey, 6, and brother Forrest, 3.

Beth Maloney Dowd and husband Jim traveled to China last September to bring home daughter Abigail, 10 months. She joins sister Meg, 6, at home in Larchmont, NY.

In May Beverly Mastrianni ’76 was feted by the Saratoga Springs Democratic Committee and given its Kathryn H. Starbuck Award for Community Service. The award is named for the former Skidmore trustee who was active in a number of Saratoga Springs organizations. Beverly, widely known for her sculpture and her work on behalf of the arts, has served a number of Saratoga-area organizations. She is a member of the National Committee of Skidmore’s Tang Museum.


Constance Martin

Maura Curran Breen is senior vice president and chief marketing officer for retail markets at Verizon Communications. She was previously group president of Verizon Long Distance, which she helped launch. Featured in an April issue of Irish America magazine, Maura was selected for membership in the Academy of Women Achievers in New York.

Margaret Coughlin enjoyed a fourth successful year running her own business as a marketing consultant. She just purchased a summer home in Maine, where she and her two children, 15 and 13, “hope to relax occasionally.”

Hilda Taylor Parrott has had a wonderful time chairing our 25th reunion. “Sometimes it’s like we never left,” she observes.

Judy Long Avitabile teaches voice and piano at Union and Schenectady Community Colleges. She also serves as accompanist for daughters Jackie, 14, who plays French horn, and Tess, 12, who plays cello.


Barbara Balaguer Blundell

After leaving Walter Reed Army Hospital, Fred (Max) Volinsky went on to Harvard Medical School and became a founding faculty member of the Harvard Residency in Emergency Medicine. He left Mass. General Hospital in 2000 to become managing partner of RCT Bioventures West, an early-stage biotech venture fund in Menlo Park, CA. Prior to leaving Harvard, Fred founded Exhale Therapeutics, a pulmonary drug company, and Pedi-Call. Fred recently served as chair of the Stanford Bio Bootcamp, which trains Stanford research faculty about biotech start-ups. He was invited to speak at the UCLA Anderson Business School and at Biofinance 2002 and will be speaking in Shanghai in September. Fred serves as a biotech advisor to Paul Celluci, the U.S. ambassador to Canada. He is happy to hear from any of his ex-college buddies or from any Skidmore grads in the life science research, venture, or biotech fields; write to him at FV1956@aol.com, call 650-289-9025, or visit www.rctbvw.com.

In York, England, Mary Louise Ho is a full-time mum to Nicola Susan Ho Merrett, born in August 2000. She appreciates the ease with which e-mail makes it easier for alumni to stay in touch. She may be contacted at maryho@mary50.fsnet.com.uk.


Kim West

Lisa Lavieri
reminded me that our 25th reunion is just two years away. I don’t know about all of you, but I certainly cannot be that old! At least that’s how I feel, as I watch my 2-year-old twins run around the house. I have recently purchased a second home in Pacific Grove, CA (on the Monterey Peninsula), and plan to eventually relocate there. Anyone know alums living in that area?

Carol Visger has moved with her husband and kids to Stowe, VT. They bought a small garden, nursery, and gift shop business about one mile south of the Stowe line, in Waterbury Center. Carol’s husband, Mike, has always wanted to do something like this, so they are “taking the plunge.”

When Leslie Vanden Handel DiCarlo and husband Peter acquired a derelict brick building on Caroline Street in Saratoga Springs, she enlisted two Skidmore interns to help her come up with a plan to turn the vacant property into an eatery and tavern. All the planning paid off: the Saratoga City Tavern, which features a bistro, banquet hall, and rooftop bar, is newly opened. Intern Jane Bowie ’01 is the tavern’s business manager.


© 2002 Skidmore College