Connections and celebrations
Alumni from classes ending in 3 and 8 gathered the first weekend in June to reminisce, create new Skidmore memories and enjoy all that campus and Saratoga Springs have to offer. Alumni and their families took tours of the old and new campuses, the Tang and the North Woods. They caught up over games of golf and yoga sessions. Many stepped back into the classroom for minicolleges hosted by faculty, while others soaked up the sun near Haupt Pond and on Case Green. The college honored a select group of outstanding alumni and took pause to remember those dear to our hearts. Class gala dinners, followed by dancing and a spectacular fireworks display, topped off a weekend of renewed connections.
During the Alumni Association Recognition Ceremony on Saturday, June 2, reunion classes gathered at the Arthur Zankel Music Center’s Helen Filene Ladd Concert Hall to recognize and celebrate this year’s exceptional award recipients and numerous record-breaking class fundraising results.
Sibyl Waterman Haley '71, president of the Alumni Association, welcomed alumni and guests and spoke of connections at Skidmore, saying that this was a weekend for alumni to “share confidences, open hearts to friends and leave feeling blessed by Skidmore connections.” She added, “There’s nothing like it!” Haley also encouraged attendees to get involved, promising, "You will make connections while making a difference.”
President Philip A. Glotzbach presided over the ceremony and provided a college update. He announced that Creating Our Future: The Campaign for Skidmore has raised $160.7 million of its $200 million goal. He spoke about each of the campaign’s priorities, which include the Skidmore Fund, Scholarships and Financial Aid, The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Athletics, Career Development and Transformative Experiences and the Center for Integrated Sciences—making particular note of the importance of a new science facility in “delivering a world-class liberal arts education.” He thanked alumni for their gifts, energy, hard work and passion, saying, “You are deeply, deeply appreciated.”
Ten alumni, ranging from the classes of 1948 to 2013, were recognized for their creative thought, distinguished achievement and outstanding service. In addition, Linda G. Toohey, trustee emerita, was named an honorary alumna.
Alice A. Wilder ’88, Ed.D.
The Creative Thought Matters Award of Distinction
With a standing ovation from fellow classmates, The Creative Thought Matters Award of Distinction was bestowed upon Alice Wilder ’88, an Emmy Award-winning producer who develops educational content for children. She reflected, “Everyone is creative … living a good life means maintaining the characteristics of childhood … children express creativity easily and with joy.”
Andrew S. Warner ’83, M.D.
Distinguished Achievement Award
Physician, educator and patient advocate Dr. Andrew Warner ’83 received the Distinguished Achievement Award for his exceptional professional work and community service. He expressed his overwhelming gratitude for the award and said that it was “the liberal arts background provided by Skidmore” that shaped his path and his interest in science.
Wilma “Billie” Stein Tisch ’48
Jacqueline M. Jung ’61 Lifetime Service Award
Billie Tisch ’48, an alumna who has “served her alma mater in every possible way” received the Jacqueline M. Jung ’61 Lifetime Service Award. Her son, Andrew Tisch, accepted the award on her behalf. He told those in attendance that his mother’s “greatest love is, was, and always will be Skidmore,” noting she will “forever cherish” the award.
Jeanne Shipp Waldinger ’68
50th Reunion Outstanding Service Award
The 50th Reunion Outstanding Service Award went to tireless volunteer Jeanne Waldinger ’68. Jeanne spoke of the benefits of being part of “a truly vibrant educational community” and encouraged her classmates to “reflect, reconnect and recharge” during their 50th celebrations. Ever the ardent advocate, she reminded everyone of “the rewards of volunteering for our college.”
Zilpha “Dotsie” Slosson Erskine ’48
Outstanding Service Award
Dotsie Slosson Erskine ’48 was honored with the Outstanding Service Award. An engaged alumna for more than 70 years, she reflected on her deep and lasting love for Skidmore, saying, “Skidmore has amassed love in plenty while growing in excellence.” Smiles spread across every face in the room as Dotise exclaimed, “Ain’t love grand?!”
Constance Masciale Carino ’58, R.N., Ph.D.
Outstanding Service Award
Health care pioneer and nursing professional Connie Carino ’58 received the Outstanding Service Award for her dedication to Skidmore. She reflected on Skidmore’s nursing program, thanking the college for introducing her to “this most admired profession,” while noting that “the wave of the future is through scientific endeavors,” citing the importance of Skidmore’s new Center for Integrated Sciences.
Lynn Faught ’73
Outstanding Service Award
Longtime volunteer Lynn Faught ’73 was recognized with the Outstanding Service Award for her ongoing service. Lynn thanked her classmates to a roar of their applause and dedicated the award to her “happy pappy” as she reflected on fond memories of her father. Showing just how dedicated she is, Lynn said, “I plan to spend several more decades doing my part for Skidmore.”
M.L. Graeme Campbell ’98, M.B.A.
Outstanding Service Award
Graeme Campbell ’98 thanked “the community and institution that has given me so much professionally and personally” as she accepted her Outstanding Service Award. She spoke of Lucy Skidmore Scribner’s mission to help young girls and women become self-supporting and how she is inspired to carry that mission forward in her own work and volunteerism remarking, “Giving back does matter.”
Romy H. Kushnick ’13
The David H. Porter Award for Young Alumni Service
Romy Kushnick ’13 accepted this year’s David H. Porter Award for Young Alumni Service. Already an accomplished professional and passionate volunteer, Romy shared that Skidmore “taught her to think critically and tackle challenges head on.” She thanked the alumni community for its continuous support, saying, “while Skidmore may no longer be my physical home, it continues to be a strong influence.”
Courtney C. Mattison ’08, M.A.
The Joseph C. Palamountain Award for Young Alumni Achievement
Currently in Indonesia curating the largest installation of her career, Courtney Mattison ’08 accepted the Joseph C. Palamountain Award for Young Alumni Achievement for her work as an internationally recognized artist and ocean advocate via video message. She said the award will “serve as a reminder that Skidmore supports my dream of using art to inspire change” exclaiming, “creative action matters!”
Linda G. Toohey, M.A., Trustee Emerita
A leader who has helped cultivate a special bond between Skidmore and the surrounding community, Trustee Emerita Linda Toohey was given a class ring and named an honorary alumna. She remarked how much she has “come to love this college” and expressed pride in the honor. Of her new “classmates” Linda remarked, “You are smart, creative and know how to have fun!”
There was much to celebrate this year, including 21 class records and six reunion records broken by this year’s reunion classes. All reunion class gifts support Creating Our Future: The Campaign for Skidmore, including scholarships, collaborative faculty-student research, student life, exhibitions and programming at the Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, student-athletes and so much more.
The Class of 1943 celebrated with a new class and 75th reunion record with an overall gift of $577,621.
The Class of 1948 set new 70th reunion records for Presidents Society donors (four) and annual giving to the Skidmore Fund ($164,961), as well as both class and reunion records for overall giving, with a remarkable total gift of $5,040,386.
Inspired by their milestone 50th reunion and several challenges, the Class of 1968 broke class records for Presidents Society donors (33), Skidmore Fund giving ($173,716) and overall giving with a total gift of more than $1,549,335. Their gifts will support all aspects of the living-learning experience for students. The successful effort was led by Fund Chair and Presidents Society Chair Ellen Shaul Bell, along with Gift Planning Chair Susan Hirsch Schwartz.
The Class of 1993, celebrating their 25th reunion, set new class records for Skidmore Fund giving ($63,816) and overall giving with a total gift of $112,998.
The Class of 1998 marked their 20th reunion with class records for Presidents Society donors (10), Skidmore Fund giving ($27,068) and an overall total of $113,968.
The Classes of 1963, 1973, 1978, 1983 and 1988 all set impressive new class records: The Class of 1963 gave a total of $1,061,272; 1973 grads made an overall gift of $583,164; alumni from 1978 raised $355,531 (including a class record of $236,657 for the Skidmore Fund); members of the Class of 1983 contributed $209,571, and the Class of 1988 made an overall gift of $247,595 and set a class record for Presidents Society donors (10).
Young alumni also made a major impact. The Class of 2008, celebrating their 10th reunion, raised a class record of $17,773, while the Class of 2013 achieved new class and fifth- reunion records for both Skidmore Fund support ($31,536) and overall giving with a total gift of $38,872.
“Our gifts support the outstanding advancements so evident on campus, our current students and their experiences, and ensure continued positive momentum for Skidmore College,” remarked Merilee Mapes Perkins ’76, an Alumni Association Board of Directors member who serves as chair of reunions.
This year's reunion giving totaled $10,011,023, thanks to more than 1,600 alumni spanning reunion classes from 1943 to 2013. This outstanding display of generosity was made possible through the care of the Skidmore community and the efforts of nearly 200 class fundraising and reunion volunteers. Every gift, no matter the size, helps create more for Skidmore.
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