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Arts on view
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Barbara Crossman Bell
As we continue to mourn for those lost on September 11, we also wonder about the long-term effects on our children, our grandchildren, and our country. It seems ironic that baby-boomers who strongly resisted our country’s involvement in the Vietnam War should now respond with true patriotism and love of country.
Barbara Hauck writes, “Youngest son Matt, 25, left for India in September to work with the poor through Cross Cultural Solutions, a secular organization that is working to bridge cultural gaps between the U.S. and communities in India and Africa. Right now he is wandering the countryside with a friend, and all I want is for him to come home.” Barb, a freelance fundraiser and writer, is executive director of the Warner Theatre Preservation Trust. In her spare time, she paints and teaches art to inner-city seven- and eight-year-olds.
Liz Miller Grasty took her husband to Saratoga Springs for the first time last year, taking time to talk with several freshmen living in Jonsson Tower. She is president of the New Horizon Credit Union, which has offices in Manassas and Chantilly, VA.
Since September 11 psychologist Laurie Williams Hamilton has been busy. A national instructor for the disaster mental-health services unit of the American Red Cross, she traveled to NYC to teach crisis response and debriefing techniques to mental-health volunteers. “It’s actually been a very spiritually intense time for me,” she says.
Congratulations to Elaine Allen, who holds an endowed professorship—the Joyce Chair in Mathematics and Statistics—at Babson College in Wellesley, MA.
Marsha Bayly Schoene is teaching special education in a public elementary school in Seattle, WA. Oldest son Tyson, 25, works in town; second son Blair, 23, is at MIT doing a doctorate in geology on scholarship; youngest son Peter, 18, is a freshman at Bowdoin College; and daughter Katie, 15, is a high-school junior. Marsha spends her leisure time following Katie’s soccer tournaments.
My husband and I returned to Syracuse this September from Anchorage, AK. He retired in July after 25 years with the telephone company in Anchorage. We drove across Canada over 28 days, and had the pleasure of stopping in Edmonton, Alberta, to see Lelde “Sandy” Skipsna Muehlenbachs and her family. Sandy is still painting and recently moved into a new studio.
After five years of story collection and writing, Betsy Evans has published a book, You Can’t Come to My Birthday Party: Conflict Resolution for Young Children (High/Scope Educational Research Foundation; www.highscope.org). As a teacher-trainer Betsy has traveled throughout the U.S. and the United Kingdom, developing a commitment to providing children with the tools for conflict mediation. Her oldest son Tryfan, a recent graduate of the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, lives in D.C.; Devon is married and a second-year resident at Beth Israel Deaconess in Boston; and Sorrel is a senior at Ohio Wesleyan. Husband Jeff is building his second dome: an air-filled structure with state-of-the-art playing fields inside! (www.indooractionsports.com)
Gretchen Traas Spencer is living in Washington, DC, “on pins and needles these days, but trying to keep it all in perspective.” She observes, “These are uncharted waters for a generation that lived through some pretty amazing and unbelievable times ourselves. I still have the photograph of myself and two other Skidmore students that was published in the Albany Times Union, in which I am holding a sign reading “Stamp Out War and Apathy,” a cigarette from another era dangling in my fingers. My father nearly disowned me.” Gretchen and husband Bailey celebrated 30 years of marriage with a trip to Italy last spring. Daughter Sarah is a sophomore at UVA. Gretchen is in her fifth year as head of the lower school at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Day School in Northwest Washington. “Like so many others,” Gretchen notes, “I am constantly weighing my choices in my middle years. What else should I be doing? Have we made a difference? Can we do more?”
Jane Roberts Alpert finds herself inundated with early application forms as her triplets Lauren, Courtney, and Jonathan prepare to go off to college next year. So far, there have been visits to several campuses, including Cornell and Union. Jane asks, “Can you imagine a Union female dating a Skidmore male? What’s wrong with this picture?”
Judith Mallory Streeter, twin sister of Betsy, passed away suddenly in August. A gifted artist, Judith was exhibiting at the Stephen Haller Gallery in SoHo. She had a new show scheduled to open in September, according to Margery Mellman, who had attended several of her previous shows.
Michelle Champoux proves that philosophy majors can find jobs in their field: She works part-time as the ethics consultant for a Visiting Nurses Alliance, where she helps integrate clinical and organizational ethics into a problem-solving format. Michelle, who lives near Montpelier, VT, with her husband and 10-year-old, teaches ethics at a community college and serves on the school board.
Juneau, AK, resident Susan Baxter celebrated her 27th year as a classroom teacher and still likes going to work each day. She works with about 60 elementary students as an extended learning teacher and an English as a Second Language teacher. Susan and husband David Sturdevant are hosting a Russian university student from Juneau’s sister city, Vladivostok, where they have had many friends. Daughter Blythe is a dance major at Chapman College, and Lissa is a patient advocate at Oakland Children’s Hospital, both in California.
Sandy Lipson, who lives in Boston’s Back Bay, has a new title at Fidelity Investments: vice president for executive staffing. Active in a number of professional organizations, she is chapter co-president of the International Association for Corporate and Professional Recruitment. When she is not working, Sandy spends time viewing and buying art.
Within hours of the terrorist attacks of September 11, Air Force Academy economics professor Barbara Bull Riester traveled from her Virginia home to join the Red Cross relief effort in NYC and surrounding areas. She coordinated more than 300 individuals—of whom over 90 percent were volunteers—in a massive outreach to every family living in New Jersey that had been directly affected by the disaster. The mission focused on providing financial support and arranging for the acquisition of death certificates. The mission, Barbara says, “was unlike any of the eight or ten disaster assignments
I have been involved in.”
Susan Law Dake was honored by the Pillar Society of Saratoga Springs this past October. She was cited for her volunteer leadership in improving the quality of life in Saratoga.
A longer version of this column is available online for classmates who send me their e-mail addresses. Please send news, opinions, book lists, gossip, etc., to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nancy M McNiff
Since completing an M.F.A. in creative writing in 1998, Laurie Fisher Lykken has been an adjunct writing instructor for several junior colleges in Minnesota. Son Nate is a junior at Pomona College in California; his brother Zach is in 9th grade.
Carolyn Bliss Corcoran is thrilled that daughter Michelle Kelly Corcoran ’01 is now a fellow alumna!
Elizabeth Raff Nace
Barbara Grugan Frieman, clinical associate professor of orthopaedic surgery, was named president of the medical staff at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA. She is the first woman physician named to that post in the hospital’s history. Barbara also serves as vice president of the Jefferson Medical College Alumni Association.
Mira Fish Coleman was recognized by the Office of the Commissioner of Probation for her fine work as a probation officer in Orleans, MA. A 27-year veteran of the Massachusetts Probation Service, Mira was lauded for “an outstanding work ethic and exemplary leadership skills.”
Summer in Saratoga always brings visitors. This year, Emily Pavlovic Chiles and husband Jerry joined Kate Ferris, me, and our husbands for dinner when the Chileses were in town. Emily loves living in Texas because she can grow marvelous plants that wouldn’t survive in the upstate New York climate; but she enjoys her annual visits to Saratoga. Emily and Jerry breed horses, along with other business ventures, and were in town to sell some of their yearlings.
Steffenie Oliver Kirkpatrick, husband Gerry, and daughter Fiona also visited in August on their way to a week on an Adirondack lake. Later that month, Steffenie traveled to Mexico to further explore her passion for weaving with natural dyes.
Kate Ferris and husband Tim Schlachter hosted dinner for Victoria Greene Aldrich and my family. Kate completed her term as president of Saratoga County’s Soroptomist International, a women’s service organization.
Kate and Vicki Aldrich attended the inauguration of my husband, Joseph Moore, as the second president of SUNY Empire State College. They wonder how they can be old enough to have a college president as a friend! It was an honor to have President Studley represent Skidmore at the event.
Madeline Lewis Smokler is the new managing director of corporate communications at Greenfield Consulting Group, a marketing firm in Westport, CT.
Nancy Garran is still working at the family business, Cape Cod Sea Camps in Brewster, MA, which is celebrating its 80th anniversary. Nancy’s husband, Davis Peterson, works alongside her. Last summer the camp had over 1,200 campers and more than 200 staff. Among the campers were children of Nancy’s Skidmore friends Susan Fleischmann Erickson and Susan Camuse Campbell. They love the opportunity to get together every year. Nancy says the camp is open all year round, and she’d love visitors.
Dorothy Hafner is alive and well, having survived the World Trade Center disaster intact. Dorothy’s studio is close to that area of Manhattan. She plans to continue with her full-time art career as things settle down in NYC. Dorothy wrote because Nan Butkus asked of her whereabouts in a previous Scope.
I ran into Anne Peterson Conolly, who is enjoying her return to the classroom, teaching English at Albany Academy for Girls. She is also running the community service component of their curriculum, which she loves.
Recently I had the pleasure of attending Skidmore’s Frances Steloff Lecture and listening to Russell Banks read two of his short stories. Banks said he chose the selections for the comfort they might offer people coping with the difficult times we are experiencing as a nation. Both did—how wonderful that the art of writing can help us make sense of our world. Skidmore brings such a wide variety of rich events to the community, and I am always pleased to be able to participate in them.
Noreen P. Reilly
Merry Jo Oursler Velasquez was promoted to associate professor in the biology department at the University of Minnesota at Duluth.
Pat Robbins Bigelow is assistant nursing coordinator for Hospice of South Carroll County in New Hamphire. Pat’s daughter Allison is a sophomore at the University of Maryland; daughter Amy is a freshman at the University of Chicago.
Ingeborg Hegemann Clark
Roslyn Rose is owner of a fine pottery and porcelain antique dealership in Hoboken, NJ. In October the company sponsored an annual walking tour of city art studios and galleries.
Karen Borodinsky has incorporated a NYC-based media company, TransAction, Inc., which focuses on the British popular music scene. She continues to work at Argus Research Corporation as a senior accounts manager.
Neal Rorke and wife Alexis moved out of NYC to a house in Southport, CT, and welcomed a big yellow Lab named Bear—delivered by Lab Rescue—the same day. Neal is finishing up his third season as a publicist with NBC’s “Law & Order” and boasts that he even got Bear a cameo role in one episode. He adds, “A day at a time, God has been good to me.”
Mark Haynes received a doctorate in immunology from the University of Miami; he is a research assistant professor in rheumatology at Thomas Jefferson University.
Laurie Rogers Smalley is enjoying a new position with Westchester County Social Services. She says, “It is truly public health nursing with a twist, as I make assessments of hospitalized and nursing-home patients’ eligibility for home-care Medicaid benefits.” She and Peter are happy that eldest son Bryan is attending Mary Washington College in Virginia as a geography major. Craig is a junior and Alaina a freshman in high school. Laurie is interested in hearing from other nursing majors from ’77, ’78, and ’79.
Karra Todd Partridge and her husband just completed their master’s degrees from Marygrove College in Detroit, MI. Kara teaches freshman social studies at the Freshman Academy in Canton, OH, and her husband is a teacher and football coach at a public high school. They have three children: Karetta, 12, Robert, 9, and Kristiane, 7. Kara hopes to continue the legacy started by her mother, Oretta Davis Todd ’54, by encouraging their children to consider attending Skidmore. Kara welcomes hearing from classmates at email@example.com.
Consultant Ron Karr reports that his books The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Great Customer Service and The Titan Principle: The Number One Secret to Sales Success are selling quite well.
Steven Sullivan was feted in October by the Pillar Society of Saratoga Springs. He was honored for his volunteer leadership in improving the quality of life in Saratoga.
Our move to Tucson was wonderful. We arrived on the 4th of July and spent our first evening watching the Tucson Symphony perform Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture, complete with fireworks. I’ve left the world of high-tech and taken a position in the buying department of the Summit Hut, a great outdoor shop here in town. With the Catalina Mountains right in my backyard, I feel quite fortunate to be working with other outdoor enthusiasts, as well as having more time to hike, rock climb, and golf. My daughters fill my life with joy, are doing well in school, and are better climbers than I am!
Anne Beyrer Atlihan and family have flown twice since the September 11 attacks. She writes, “In a small way, I felt as if I were contributing towards unity and patriotism.” Anne is in her sixth year of teaching at Central Islip, NY, public schools. Daughter Lilly, 13, attends the Knox Preparatory School on Long Island.
Mary Lou Anderson Relle sends along this message to photography buffs: “I heard from Linke this past year, and he is actually bringing Skidmore’s photo studio into the 21st century. It sounds wonderful!”