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Summer 2003

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Centennial spotlight

On campus

Faculty focus

Arts on view




Class notes

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Marcia Mattson Todd

Sonia Sparks Wallman is a nationally recognized professor of biotechnology at New Hampshire Community Technical College, where she specializes in DNA cloning. She lives in a solar/thermal mass home, all but the southern side of which is underground. Two thirds of the structure’s southern side is covered by a greenhouse, where she grows things like passion fruit—in New Hampshire!

Ruby Puryear Hearn is spending her retirement enjoying her two grandchildren and serving on several boards, including one for the Institute for Health Care Improvement. Ruby and husband Bob traveled to Japan this year in conjunction with her participation on the board of the Center for Global Partnership, a Japanese foundation.

Last spring Hadley Sillick Robertson enjoyed a weeklong tour of Oaxaca, Mexico, with classmates. The trip was organized by Sue Shaffer McGown, and they were joined by Carol Vandeventer Baker and Carol Siccardi Roberts. Oaxaca, in the mountains south of Mexico City, is known for its folk art—such as wooden carvings, rugs, clothing, and weavings. The group actually made excursions into the home of some of the artisans. “Sue was a great hostess and organizer,” Hadley reports.

Nancy Tyler has been living in La Mesa, CA, for the last 10 years. She teaches eighth-grade English and has written a poetry book. She expects to retire this year and is very interested in swapping places with other classmates for vacations. Anyone interested in visiting the San Diego area should contact her at 619-462-4134.

In retirement Sarah Wagner Kilishek and husband George have finished building a two-seater RVS airplane in their garage. It took five and a half years to complete and has now flown about 100 hours. “During the process, I learned how to rivet,” Sarah notes.

Marlene Danto Josefberg reports that the Miami-based anti-drug program for youth that she helped start 10 years ago continues to grow and get results. DFYIT (Drug Free Youth In Town) now has over 6,000 members and has been adopted in communities in Kansas and Iowa.

Lura Swift Provost is treasurer for the Boston Committee of the Garden Clubs of America.

Nelle Nugent is again taking part in the Principal for a Day Program in NYC. This program puts noneducators into the school system to observe, listen, and make recommendations for improvements. She is also mentoring a sophomore at Manhattan’s Norman Thomas High School via Skidmore’s chapter of the College Alumni in Public Schools (CAPS) program. “Every day is exciting,” Nelle observes.

Having moved from Boxford, MA, to Savannah, GA, more than two years ago, Barby Morse Townsend and husband Al find their lives busier than ever. They love Savannah, a city with a rich history, terrific symphony, wonderful art museum, and great restaurants. Barby started dabbling in watercolor painting a few years ago but has since found an excellent instructor who has turned it into a passion. Barby discovered that Sue Parker Prior ’61 lives two blocks away from her. Relying on Sue’s musical capabilities and experience, Barby and Sue formed a four-part harmony group, now 16 members strong. They have a lot of fun entertaining at nursing homes and are very well received.

Linda Stevens Lucas and husband Ferd have already crossed the big pond four times this year to visit their new granddaughter near London. Linda continues to enjoy success as a realtor on the South Shore of Boston.

Joanne Niebling Minton has been living in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, since 2000. She and her husband are both retired and are avid golfers. Their daughter lives nearby, and their two sons live in New Jersey and Ohio.

Every other year Barbara Sutcliffe Dusseault and husband Bob sail their 43-foot boat from Cape Cod to Florida. They always stop at a marina in New Jersey to visit with Jane Christie MacVicar.

Carol Gleason Caldwell and husband Bill, who have been married for six years, are partners in a real estate firm.

Since retiring three years ago, Theresa Nelson Ehrenberg enjoys traveling with her husband. They have four grandchildren, all under the age of six.

Florence Bishop Bogdan and husband Ed have settled into their new home near Naples, FL. Each summer they return to Saratoga, where they enjoy going to the races. Floss was introduced to betting on horses by her grandfather many years ago and has been an enthusiast of the races ever since.

As I write this, I am anxiously awaiting the birth of two foals. In March Doug and I went sailing with friends in the British Virgin Islands for two weeks. It was a welcome break from the cold and snow.


Sandy Weisman Sheppard

In Arizona Linda Brafman Berke looks forward to retirement within the next couple of years. She has two grandsons in Saratoga (the 4-year-old goes to preschool at Skidmore). In January Linda enjoyed a luncheon attended by 25 Tucson-area Skidmore alumni.

Since retirement, Linda Speer Diez has increasingly indulged in the “Moveable Feast.” This spring, she took two grandchildren to Disneyland, then joined the whole family for a trek to Mexico. Recently back from a week’s stay in Sicily, she comments, “It’s much easier to keep moving than to think too much about getting older.”

When not teaching at a community college, Meredith Clark Graham spends time with her three grandchildren, ages 1, 2, and 4.

Judy Brown Tulchin has quit teaching and plans to “coast into the retirement phase” by working in a newly opened independent bookstore in Chapel Hill, NC, five days a week. Despite putting in long hours, she enjoys interacting with customers. “I unfortunately don’t have time to read now,” laments Judy. “It’s sell, sell, sell!”

Ruth Aron Zales is moving to a “really pretty new home” in Tucson, AZ, which will be easier to navigate with her two new hips.

In April Nancy Dinar was honored by the Livingston, NJ, Township Council as a Citizen of Achievement. She has worked for the West Essex Tribune for 23 years, formerly as managing editor, and is an award-winning photographer. An active civic volunteer, Nancy has served on the boards of the Chamber of Commerce and the Livingston Symphony Orchestra.

Susan Stark Match notes that the last issue of Scope implied that Eleanor MacGregor Eades has a home in Salisbury, CT; in fact, she lives year-round in Fort Pierce, FL.


Lynn Garrett Meyer

Joan Deely Henderson and husband Dave enjoyed a bike trip to New Zealand and several sailing adventures in and around Connecticut this spring.

In April June Kahl Schubert received a 2003 Chancellor’s Award for Excellence at the University of Wisconsin at River Falls. She has served as recruitment coordinator and career advisor for the university’s career services office for 21 years.

George and I spent a week in California, driving to San Diego with stops in Monterey and Santa Barbara and seeing friends along the way. We also enjoyed visiting several of the California missions, introducing the local history to our visiting Japanese friend. I have returned to a part-time job in nursing, working a few days a week in a skilled-nursing facility.


Jane Snowdon Jones

Alexandra Wilbert Fleischman welcomed her third grandchild in April. She enjoyed spending the winter near Ocala, FL.

Virginia Nyvall Durfee’s only child, Susan, was married in Little Compton, RI, just four days after the horrific events of 9/11; the family decided to proceed and celebrate a happy event. More happiness ensued this past January with the birth of a grandchild. Needless to say, “Gigi and Papa are thrilled!”


Bonnie Allen Shertenlieb

Kayla Abelove Feldman is a grandmother as of December, thanks to daughter Samantha Feldman Logocki ’01 and husband Daniel. Kayla and her husband have already trekked from Kingston, NY, to California twice to see their grandson. “It’s worth the trip,” exclaims Kayla, “and five stars in the Michelin Guide to Life.

After recovering from two hip replacements, Betsy Goldberg says that “retirement is finally terrific.” A year of travel included climbing in Angkor, Cambodia, touring Thailand, and painting Haloing Bay while traveling in Hanoi. Betsy also celebrated a birthday in Chaco Canyon, NM, and climbed pyramids at Mayan sites in Guatemala, Mexico, and Honduras. She in now settled in a renovated home studio to paint.

Lindsey Knowlton wrote to say her dad died this past fall. “Many of you remember him at Happy Pappy Weekends, which he so loved.” Lindsey and husband Burt traveled to Scotland and Cornwall this spring.

Cindy Hann Roeser loves her work as an attorney for Legal Aid’s criminal defense division, which she began in September 2001. This spring, she and her daughter took a two-week Antarctic expedition, where they found the weather warmer than in NYC.

Nancy Bigelow Sinclair enjoyed a recent letter from Valerie Burkhardt Marier. “It brought to mind the wonderful Skidmore friendships I’ve had over the years,” Nancy says, adding that her roommate Judy Meehart Rist ’63, Carolyn Vaughan Mitchell ’64, and she get together several times a year for a “toot”—NYC Opera; Newport, RI; Maine; and lots of “couch sessions!”

Janice BozBeckian Touloukian and husband Bob are still working but taking time to enjoy family, friends, and their granddaughter.


Toby Weisberg Rubenstein

Class co-president Sue Steele Isbell and husband Bob live in Tampa, FL, and have eight grandchildren (four boys and four girls) living in Tennessee, Oregon, and South Carolina. Since retiring from his radiology practice, Bob has been involved in an Internet transcription service. The Isbells go skiing when at their home in Telluride, CO, and Sue keeps busy with quilting, a book group, and an investment group. She stays in touch with Anne Meynen Maggard and husband Carl, who are retired in Sarasota.

Our other co-president, Lenore Bethka Wersten, reports that it was a tough winter in the Saratoga Springs area. She is a substitute teacher, while her husband stays busy installing crown molding and chair rails in their home. They have two grandchildren near Boston.

Dorothy Martin Milne teaches English at the Bement School in Deerfield, MA, and coaches field hockey and swimming. She enjoys being able to ride her bike to school. Husband John teaches physics at Deerfield Academy. One of the couple’s sons also teaches in a private school in Deerfield; the other is a consultant. The family owns a summer day camp in Vermont on a property that has been in Dorothy’s family since the 1800s.

Jeannie Hitchcock Kithil is a teacher at a prep school in Santa Fe, NM, where she and her husband live at an altitude of 7,000 feet. Several years ago they lost their son and recently ran a commemorative race at Duke. The Kithils have two daughters. One teaches, while the other travels and substitute teaches. Jeannie stays in touch with Bev Holmes Strodtz and her husband, who are in real estate in Sumner, WA (overlooking Mt. Rainier). Jeannie also sees Barbara Dunlap, a special-needs educator who lives in Berkeley, CA, and has three daughters.

Jeannie, Bev, and Bobbie also stay in touch with Charlotte “Corky” Dusenberry Lesser, who lives in Manhattan Beach, CA.

Sandy Brandt Van Mell lives in Mountainview, CA, and sings four-part harmony competitively with a leading group.


Ann LoDolce

Mary Kay Cornwell Lundberg and husband Marshall are living in Portsmouth, RI, where she has sold real estate for Century 21 Trend for 19 years. Mary Kay enjoyed a reunion in NYC last summer with Cora Rosevear and Sue Rothsmith. Her son, who lives in Larchmont, NY, has three children, and her daughter teaches school and is a ski instructor in Vail, CO.

Steffi Evans Alexander does marketing and sales training for Long and Foster, the largest privately owned real estate company in the U.S. Son Evan, who graduated from Middlebury and Georgetown Law, where he was managing editor of the law review, now works for Hale and Dorr, LLC, in Washington, DC. Daughter Brooke graduated from Colgate in 2002 with a degree in mathematical economics and works in corporate finance in San Francisco. In April Susan Berman came to Washington to visit Steffi and family.

Sue Rowland Chollet describes an enviable position where she and her husband have raised their children, worked their careers, taken care of their parents, and now “are ready for it to be our turn.” A board member and full-time volunteer for the New Hampshire health-care system, Sue thoroughly enjoys the work and believes, at times, that she “might be making a difference.” When not volunteering, she enjoys horseback riding, dining with friends, visiting family, and “maintaining a balance” to her life.

Marilynn Sacks Auster enjoys spending time with her 15-month-old granddaughter. Youngest son Dan was recently married.

Did you see Carolyn Bates’s photo on the cover of the March 2003 issue of Old House Interiors magazine? Her work, including scenic shots of her hometown in Burlington, VT, can be viewed at www.carolynbates.com.

Roselle Kline Chartock continues to teach at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in North Adams, MA. A second edition of her text Educational Foundations: An Anthology (Prentice Hall 2000) is due out next year. Daughter Sarah is pursuing a doctoral program at Princeton in comparative politics; son Jonas is executive director of Teach for America in Houston, TX; and husband Alan continues his work as executive director of Northeast Public Radio and a SUNY Albany professor.

Susan Hagan Cavanaugh writes, “We have become an all-Skidmore family.” Youngest daughter Rebecca ’03 graduated in May. Older daughter Jennifer Cavanaugh Mason ’93 and her husband Paul Mason ’92 welcomed a child in April. Last May Susan went to Paris to visit Rebecca, who was there on the Skidmore-in-Paris program. She says she was “impressed by Skidmore’s facility there, and enjoyed meeting the director of the program and her French language professor. As a Skidmore parent I am delighted to see the college going from strength to strength. I could not help remembering that when Diane Fager wanted to study in Paris she had to take a year off, and on her return was given credit only for one course in French at the Sorbonne. How times have changed!”

Bonnie Vancalette Hamilton’s husband, Colin, is a busy orthopedic surgeon who got the “bug” to take scuba lessons. Bonnie, who became a certified scuba diver in Bimini in March, has also begun to sky dive, “really stepping outside the box!” The couple’s son Trevor ’93 was delighted to attend his 10th reunion in May. Bonnie says she and Trevor both feel “remarkably lucky to have received the foundation for life, both in skills and values, at Skidmore.”

After receiving an M.S. in historic preservation and museum studies from Eastern Michigan University in 2000, Laura Henderson is a museum registrar at Miami University Art Museum in Oxford, OH.

Sandy Berk Jacoby and husband Richard have moved to Rye Brook, NY, after 28 years in neighboring Rye. The couple decided it was time to scale down but made sure to leave plenty of room for sons Scott, 31, Jon, 26, and James, 22, and their significant others.


Christine Filbin Hoffman

Last July 4 Sara Schroeder Keaney and daughter Ann Keaney Gavin ’95 flew to Nicaragua to attend the wedding of Cindy Sharpe Malkin’s son Jon. Besides thoroughly enjoying the reunion with the Malkin family, Sara says, “The bride and groom and their families planned an adventure—four cities, two hotels, meals, dancing, and fun for the out-of-country guests. Swinging from ropes atop the volcanic rainforest and climbing atop Leon’s Cathedral, we bonded as celebrants of this joyous family wedding.”


Molly Meyer

Karen Burke LeFevre was in California for the wedding of Michaele Cohen Drayer’s son over reunion weekend. Griselle Singer Cohen attended Norma Susswein Saks’s oldest son Mark’s wedding the same weekend.

Cheryl Smith Major, neonatal outreach coordinator at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, took a church-sponsored trip to South Africa in June.

Two of Anne Kantor Lynn’s daughters graduated from college in May.

In May Debby Davis Cromwell attended son Matt’s graduation and her husband Larry’s reunion—both at Princeton. Debby, who formerly ran an after-school downhill ski program in Hanover, NH, has switched to instructing cross-country and snowshoeing.

Trish Wall Wynkoop wants everyone to know “how much I missed seeing all the gang” at Reunion. Husband Dave underwent back surgery at Walter Reed in May and required a full month’s recovery. “I got to practice my charming bedside manner!” says Trish. In April she relocated daughter Susan to Baltimore; daughter Amy returned home at the end of May after Trish retrieved her belongings from storage in North Carolina; and she helped move daughter Sarah, who had just completed a six-month music-therapy internship in the psychiatric ward of the SUNY Stony Brook hospital in May. “We should just install a revolving door on the house,” quips Trish.

Carolyn Howard Smith is working toward a master’s in library science through the University of South Florida distance-learning program. One of her five on-site class meeting times coincided with Reunion. Her youngest child graduated from high school and will be a freshman at NYU this fall.

Robin Baker Hammerman’s daughter graduated from Stanford with a master’s degree in chemical engineering, prompting Robin to ask, “Where did she get the math-science gene?” Her son is at UPenn medical school, pursuing a combined M.D./Ph.D. degree. Robin, who sold her nursing/domestic/nanny/home-care business, is taking a “time out.” She and her 3-year-old Bernese mountain dog, Hoover, are practicing assisted animal therapy in nursing homes and pediatrics wards, and for dyslexic kids. Robin encourages classmates visiting the San Francisco Bay area to contact her by e-mail at hammerbake@aol.com.


Elizabeth Mckinley Loomis

Karen Johnson passed the CPA exam and will soon be certified as an accountant in New Jersey and Delaware, which will allow her to practice virtually anywhere in the world.

Judy Wilson celebrated New Year’s with Karleen Erhardt, whom she and her husband hosted in their Pasadena, CA, home. Judy took Karlene to her first Rose Parade (it was Judy’s 23rd). Judy, who is “still toiling away” as director of sanitation for the City of Los Angeles, is currently considering the advantages of retirement. At the same time, she and husband Randy are “happily ensconced” in their renovated fire station. Earlier this year, the couple took a trip to Africa with the Stanford Alumni Association, traveling for a month from Casablanca to Cape Town. While hunting with a tribe of pygmies in the Central African Republic, they managed to find themselves in the middle of a coup d’etat. “This experience has whetted my appetite for more exotic travel,” observes Judy.

Award-winning Simsbury, CT, artist Virginia Kemball-Cook Peake invites classmates to visit her online art gallery at www.virginiapeake.com. Virginia works in oils and produces richly colored landscapes, waterscapes, and florals “in the style of contemporary realism with hints of impressionism.” She is frequently commissioned to paint portraits of people and animals.

Last fall Larraine Bossi Smith spent 10 weeks in Cairo, Egypt, as a consultant for the health unit at the U.S. embassy there, while husband Patrick was under contract with the State Department. “It was glorious to live on the Nile,” she says, “and sharing the pyramids and everyday Cairo with our three daughters was a real treat.”

Mary Miller Mapes’s son Alex is a student at the University of Miami, where Mary is publications director for the North-South Center. Alex made the dean’s list his first semester, and is having fun rowing on the crew team. Mary, who grew up in Jamaica, remembers her freshman year at Skidmore with fondness, despite the freezing weather. She can be contacted at mmapes@miami.edu.

Bailey Evans Fine’s son Michael (Colgate ’99) works for SOBE beverage in Norwalk, CT. Daughter Laura graduated from Franklin & Marshall College and hopes to teach in the public school system. “With the stock market in its current condition,” writes Bailey, “my husband, Stanley, and I just continue to work and enjoy weekends in Bethany Beach, DE.”

Producer Jane Startz has her own independent film company in NYC and is working with Miramax Films, most recently adapting author Judy Blume’s children’s books into feature films. Tuck Everlasting, starring Sissy Spacek and Ben Kingsley, was released this year. Her current project, Ella Enchanted, starring Anne Hathaway, will be out later this year. Jane’s husband of 32 years, Peter Barton, is an independent filmmaker and professor at NYU’s film school. Son Jesse is a hip-hop artist and slam poet. Daughter Kate is a senior at Wesleyan and a dancer/choreographer. Daughter Zoe is a sophomore in high school.


© 2003 Skidmore College