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Winter 2002

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On campus

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In Memoriam

Faculty and Staff


     Marion Leonard Cote ’20 of Shelby Township, MI, died June 7. She enjoyed a remarkable career as director of personnel for the Army Air Force Exchange Service in the Far East. She lived in Korea and Japan, traveling extensively throughout China and elsewhere in Asia. She is survived by a nephew; husband Laurent predeceased her.

     Helen Olwine Thompson ’28 of Maplewood, NJ, died May 20. An English major, she worked as a social worker prior to her marriage. She was an active civic volunteer and fundraiser for school, church, and social welfare organizations. She is survived by 2 daughters, 6 grandchildren, and 15 great-grandchildren. Husband Irwin predeceased her.

     Helen Hand Knapp ’26 of Modesto, CA, died May 5. She graduated with a bachelor’s in music and taught that subject for several years in the Detroit, MI, area. She was nicknamed “Tiny” for her delicate hands. She especially enjoyed music, creative writing, and golf. She is survived by a son. Her husband, William, predeceased her.

     Evelyn Bradt Erickson ’29 of Cornwall, PA, died August 23. She majored in Romance languages and then earned a master’s in Latin instruction from Columbia University in 1936. She is survived by a daughter.

     Elizabeth Lally Rice ’29 of Mitchell-ville, MD, died September 2. An economics major, she became involved in numerous civic and education organizations, including the Red Cross and PTA. An active alumna, she served as class agent, Syracuse club president, and class secretary. She is survived by a daughter and son, a sister, and two grandchildren. Husband Harry predeceased her.

     Elizabeth Greenalch Kerkham ’31 of Vancouver, Canada, died May 25. An art major, she earned a master’s in education from Western Washington College of Education. In addition to teaching, Elizabeth did freelance photography and illustration; her work was published in national magazines and several books. She exhibited her artwork in Canada and New York City and produced costume and stage designs for theatrical productions. She was a member of the Women’s University Club in Victoria, BC; the Victoria Teachers Association; and the Victoria Camera Club. She is survived by husband Roger, two sons, and several grandchildren.

     Elizabeth Scull Stanton ’31 of Putney, VT, died July 9. An art major, she assumed leadership roles in numerous civic and public health organizations, including serving as president of the Junior League, the Vermont Assembly Home Health Agencies, and regional Visiting Nurse Association. She was also a professional administrator for the Girl Scout Council in the New Jersey area. Elizabeth was president of Skidmore’s Alumnae Association from 1936 to 1937. She is survived by two daughters, a son, five grandchildren, and ten great-grandchildren. Husband Samuel predeceased her.

     Laura Allen ’33 of New Canaan, CT, died August 14. A physical education major, she also studied photography at the Clarence White School. A teacher and administrator for over 30 years, she taught at the Nightingale-Bamford School in New Canaan and the New Canaan Country School, which she also served as official photographer. A pioneer in outdoor sports for women, she was an avid rock climber, mountaineer, and skier in this country and abroad. Laura held offices in the Audubon Society and several historical and archaeological organizations, including the presidency of the Lake Titus Protective Association in Malone, NY, where her family had a summer camp. She served as class president and class agent, both for 15 years, and sat on the nominating board of the Alumnae Association. She is survived by a sister and several nieces and nephews.

     Roberta Brunner Miller ’34 of Hanover, NH, died July 26. A biology major, she owned and operated a retail shop, 25,000 Gifts, in White River Junction, VT, with her husband. An active volunteer, she was president of the Mutual Aid Society in White River Junction; a volunteer in the radiology department of a local hospital; a PTA member who initiated a teen dance program in area public schools; and president of the Beta Sigma Phi sorority in Paradise Valley, AZ, in her retirement. She is survived by a daughter and son, three grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.

     Margaret Palmer Brister ’35 of Naples, FL, died September 8. An English major, she worked as editor of the Weston (CT) Crier, a weekly newspaper; taught writing for over a decade at the Famous Writers School in Westport; and served as a justice of the peace for 18 years. Most recently, Margaret volunteered as a librarian in Marco Island, FL. She is survived by two daughters and granddaughter Margaret Haley ’93. Husband J. Edward predeceased her.

     Helen Snavely Dinwiddie ’40 of Haverford, PA, died May 21. A home economics major, she was an active member of her 45th reunion planning committee. She is survived by daughter Ann Dinwiddie Wing ’67 and a son. Husband Alva predeceased her.

     Elizabeth Kerley Brooks ’41 of Holyoke, MA, died September 4. A business major, she was assistant to the chair of the department of zoology at the University of Massachusetts for over 20 years. Elizabeth served as president of the Franklin County Quota Club, an international service club for executive women. Husband William predeceased her; there are no known survivors.

     Prudence Wagoner Hotchkiss ’41 of Vineyard Haven, MA, died September 27. She majored in secretarial science. She is survived by several nephews and nieces. Her husband, Henry, predeceased her.

     Janet Fake ’42 of White Plains, NY, died September 28, 2000. Graduating with a degree in home economics, she went on to earn an M.A. and a Ph.D. in administration from New York University. She taught home economics until 1950, when she became district school-lunch program director, retiring in 1972. Janet was active in the American Diabetes Association, Soroptimist Club International, and White Plains Teachers Club. There are no known survivors.

     Julianne Oppenheimer Lewis ’42 of Garden City, NY, died September 21. An English major, she became a naval communications officer stationed in New York City and Hawaii, and later was an editorial assistant at McGraw-Hill. Julianne was an early advocate for preschool education and became chief administrator of the Garden City Nursery School, ranked among the top such schools statewide by the Department of Education, in the late 1950s. She also served as PTA president and was elected vice president of the board of education for several terms. For Skidmore she was class president, Nassau club president, and class secretary for over a decade. She is survived by four sons and five grandchildren; husband Lawrence predeceased her.

     Mary Schwaab ’42 of Cincinnati, OH, died July 23. After earning a degree in English, she enjoyed a career spanning nearly three decades as an administrator for the American Red Cross. There are no known survivors.

     Sally Weeks Congdon ’44 of Brooklyn, NY, died September 4. A physical education major, she went on to become an actress, dancer, and major force in community theater in the New York City area. She was co-founder of the Theater Current company and two Manhattan-based children’s repertory companies, Silver Button Productions and Young World Productions. Most recently Sally became manager of Women’s Project and Productions, a Manhattan theater for the advancement of women playwrights and producers. She was dedicated to the revitalization of the old vaudeville and music halls between Seventh and Eight Avenues. She earned a certified movement analyst degree from the Laban Institute of Dance. She is survived by husband Donald, a daughter, stepson, and five grandchildren.

     Geraldine Roy ’45 of Springfield, MA, died May 1. An art education major, she pursued graduate work in that field at Smith College. Geraldine taught art for many years at Smith College Day School, the Northampton School for Girls, and Reading High School, all in Massachusetts. She is survived by sister Margaret Roy ’40.

     Nina Hill Web ’48 of New London, NH, died September 4. After earning a degree in physical education, she built a career as a platform-tennis instructor and entrepreneur, patenting the Webb Net Measure for platform tennis. A lifelong advocate of wilderness conservation, Nina spent many summers hiking and climbing in the Adirondack Mountains and wrote several books, including Verplanck Colvin, Father of the Adirondacks and Footsteps Through the Adirondacks. An outdoor sports enthusiast well into retirement, she was delighted to receive a kayak for her 70th birthday. She is survived by husband Richard, a son, two daughters, a brother, and five grandchildren.

     Eugenia Mosakowski Herbst ’51 of Schuylerville, NY, died at home on August 4. A music major, she was also a graduate of the Juilliard School of Music and earned a master’s in education from the University of Connecticut. She taught in the Katonah-Lewisboro school district for 20 years before retiring in 1987 to focus on running a thoroughbred horse farm with her husband. A lifelong enthusiast of creative writing, she attended the annual International Women’s Writers Guild conference at Skidmore with daughter Eugenia for 20 years. In addition to her daughter and son-in-law, she is survived by a son, a sister, two grandchildren, and a nephew. Husband J. Robert predeceased her.

     Anne Hollingbery Corper ’53 of Chappaqua, NY, died August 7. A home economics major, she obtained a master’s in education from Manhattanville College in 1974. A lifelong love of antiques prompted Anne to establish and operate the highly successful Anne Corper Country Antiques in Stamford, CT, in 1985. She was vice president of Skidmore’s Chicago club from 1958 to 1960 and a board member of several charitable organizations. She is survived by husband Philip, two daughters—including Catherine ’85—two sons, and nine grandchildren.

     Margaret Chambers Miller ’59 of Wayne, NJ, died August 5. Graduating with a degree in art, she established a career as a well-known enamel artist and was represented in galleries and private collections in the U.S., Canada, Japan, and Europe. A juried craftsman member of New Jersey Designer Craftsmen, Margaret exhibited nine one-woman shows. She was commissioned by the State of New York to create a commemorative plate in honor of Governor Hugh Carey and to produce pieces for leading architects and designers in New York City. She is survived by a son and daughter. Husband Frederic predeceased her.

     Carol Dinkelacker Sheridan ’66 of Annandale, VA, died August 31. A biology major, she earned an M.D. from the Medical College of Pennsylvania. She was associate professor and chair of physical medicine and a rehabilitation professor at Georgetown University School of Medicine from 1975 until her retirement in 2000. She was active in many professional associations. She is survived by husband Andrew, two daughters, her parents, and sisters Nancy Dinkelacker Gedarovich ’73 and Diane Dinkelacher ’73.

     Sally Adamson Smyth ’68 of Boulder, CO, died September 5. A French major, she earned a master’s in counseling psychology from the University of Colorado. She was a guidance counselor serving the Boulder and Aspen school districts, as well as a private educational consultant, for over 25 years. She enjoyed skiing, tennis, and hiking. She is survived by husband Clark, a son, and a daughter.

     Martha Moore-Russell ’68 of Haworth, NJ, died July 14. Graduating with a degree in chemistry, she subsequently earned a master’s in education from Auburn University and a doctorate in psychology from the Institute for Cognitive Studies at Rutgers University. A pioneer of therapeutic models to help children of substance abusers, she developed the Little Steps program in 1989 while working at a YMCA counseling service in Staten Island. She also maintained a private practice in Haworth. Martha had recently retired as clinical director of the Woodbridge Child Diagnostic and Treatment Center in New Jersey, a state-run residential facility for abused and neglected teenagers. Known for her commitment to troubled adolescents, she was honored by the New Jersey commissioner for human services for her contributions to the field. She is survived by husband James, a son, a stepmother, and seven brothers and sisters.

     Judith Mallory Streeter ’70 of Guilford, CT, died August 27. An art major, she became a noted artist whose works were represented by the Stephen Haller Gallery in New York City and displayed at the Guggenheim, Chrysler, Smith College, and Albers Foundation museums, as well as in the New Britain Museum of American Art and in prestigious private collections. She is survived by husband Stuart, sons Tyson and Derek, sister Elizabeth Mallory MacDermid ’70, a brother, two stepchildren, and several grandchildren. Her mother, Lois Crampton Mallory ’37, predeceased her.

     Virginia W. Smith ’71 of Stevenson, MD, died July 18. Graduating summa cum laude in economics, she earned a master’s in management from Dartmouth. Virginia enjoyed a stellar career in banking, rising from a credit trainee at Union Trust Company in 1972 to chief executive officer and president of Union National Bank in 1995—one of only four female bank presidents in the nation. A board member of the Federal Reserve Bank of Baltimore and of numerous charitable and civic organizations, she served as fundraising chair for the United Way, too. Virginia was an avid bird-watcher, gardener, and photographer. She is survived by her mother, a sister, and several nieces and nephews.

     Eugene Pietroluongo ’78 of Orange, NJ, died July 18. An honors graduate with a degree in government, he earned a J.D. in 1981 from Brooklyn Law School. He was active in New Jersey politics and served the Skidmore alumni community in various leadership roles. He is survived by wife Bonnie and a daughter.

     Frank Reisman ’82 of Princeton, NJ, died September 11 in the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. An economics major, he was an equities trader at the Cantor Fitzgerald offices on the 104th floor. Frank was an avid mountaineer and hiked the Adir-ondack High Peaks and the northern section of the Appalachian Trail from Maine to Pennsylvania. After working at his family’s manufacturing company, Natalie Lamp & Shade Corp., he joined Cantor Fitzgerald, where he had been employed for the last five years. An article about his life appeared in the November 9 installment of the New York Times’s “Portraits of Grief” series. Frank is survived by wife Gayle, a son, a daughter, his parents, a sister, and several nieces and nephews.

     Andrew Studenic ’88 of Gloversville, NY, died suddenly on September 24. Vice president of Sunderland Leather Company, a family business, he was a member of the Pine Brook Golf Club and the Eccentric Club, both in Gloversville. He is survived by his parents and a sister.

Faculty and Staff

     Former Skidmore security chief James Cooney died October 24 in Saratoga Springs; he was 80. President Jamie Studley wrote, “Known for his ‘college-as-family’ attitude, Cooney took great pride in the special relationship that existed between Skidmore students and security officers during his tenure of nearly three decades. He joined the college’s security force in 1957 as a patrolman and was later promoted to sergeant, assistant chief, and ultimately chief of security in 1976. Cooney retired in 1983, and at commencement exercises he was awarded an honorary master of laws degree, to the enthusiastic ovation of the graduating class. President Palamountain spoke of Cooney as ‘absolutely dedicated, always looking for the best in everybody, always supportive of the college, and always fair.’” A lifelong resident of Saratoga Springs, Cooney served in the U.S. Army Air Corps in World War II. Survivors include his wife, Wanda; twin sons; a sister; and several grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.

     Former Skidmore nursing professor Grace Davidson, of Dumont, NJ, died September 14. A member of the nursing department from 1954 to 1966, she regularly taught “Introduction to Patient Care” to incoming freshmen and “Medical-Surgical Nursing II” during nursing students’ junior year in New York City. Davidson earned an R.N. at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital School of Nursing and an A.M. from Teachers College, Columbia University. Before joining the Skidmore faculty she served in the Army Nurse Corps during World War II and retired from the Army Reserves with the rank of major. After Skidmore, she served as chief nursing officer at New York University Medical Center, a position from which she retired in 1979. NYU’s Davidson-Valoon Fund in Nursing is named in her honor. Davidson is survived by lifetime companion Patricia Valoon, a sister, and many nieces and nephews.


© 2001 Skidmore College