CLASS OF 1971 | 2021–2022 | WINTER ISSUE

Aloha classmates! Pandemic has changed everything for everybody. It doomed our May 2021 50th Reunion. In many places in the country life is returning to pre-pandemic activity. Our Reunion will happen April 2022 (better late than never). Keep your eyes out for dates and times.

You should have received your Reunion book. I believe an addendum will come for those procrastinators.

We do have a Reunion committee and they are working on things to do now and events and ideas for the future. You can still join the committee by contacting Kate Quigley Lynch ’82, P’17, ’19 at Also you can receive more information at

Interesting that a number of classmates have been searching for lost classmates and in most cases, were successful after many attempts.

Ed Swanson ( in Altadena, California, was looking for Vladimir (aka Walter) Zdrok. He found out that Walter is facing significant medical and other issues. Walter is living outside Philadelphia. If you are interested in finding out more, please contact Ed at email above or 626-345-5067 or 310-283-1035 and see if you can be of assistance to Walter.

Guillermo Prada-Silva ’69 was looking for his dear friend Francisco (Pancho) X. Swett. Guillermo found him through Facebook from Pancho’s daughter Natasha and wife Anita, and learned that Pancho was still alive. “The not so good news is that he was initially hospitalized for back surgery, then got a blood infection, and if that weren’t enough, COVID! Needless to say, Pancho is still recovering from all these ailments, but showing the courage to ‘keep on fighting ’till the end,’ like a good Wesman.” He eventually heard from Pancho himself through WhatsApp!

Stewart Malloy ( visited Wesleyan on May 22, 2021, even though Reunion was postponed. He was nostalgic and made a short video of his love for Wesleyan and classmates of Class of 1971. Looking forward to seeing Stew at the spring Reunion in 2022.

Steven Leinwand writes, “I am very humbled and proud to let you know that I have recently been awarded the 2021 National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Lifetime Achievement Award. The award honors NCTM members who have exhibited a lifetime of achievement in mathematics education at the national level. All three 2021 awardees plus the two 2020 awardees were recognized during the Opening Session of the 2021 NCTM Annual Meeting and Exposition in Atlanta in September. Following the Opening Session, a reception was held to honor and celebrate the recipients.” Congratulations Steve and well deserved I am certain!

Received a note from Nathan Nichols. “Hi Neil!  Hope you and yours are doing well. Was looking forward to our reunion this year, but hopefully the in-person event will happen next year. My wife and I are both retired and continue to live in Maryland. We have been blessed with three grandkids and they are the light of our lives. Like many of us, I have had some health challenges. Recovering from cancer, but the outlook presently looks bright. We are outdoor folks and love the wilderness and hiking. Yosemite National Park remains my spiritual ground.” He went on to see if I could talk with his nephew who was moving to Hawaii and interested perhaps in farming. You may remember I was a vanilla farmer on Kauai. I love the crop but it is a good bit of work and I understand why vanilla can be expensive. Enjoyed my farming but gave it up for various reasons, one being travel. I am currently on a beach in Long Island, New York. My life revolves around the beach in New York and my home beach on Kauai. Life is tough but I volunteered for this gig!

Well, that is all the news I have. Remember to write and let me know what is going your way these days. Looking to see you all post pandemic for our 50-ish Reunion (April 28 to May 1). Be there or be square!


CLASS OF 1971 | 2021 | ISSUE 1

Aloha classmates! The pandemic has changed everything for everybody, including our May 2021 50th Reunion to virtual. Please plan your virtual attendance as we will still have an innovative and wonderful program.

     We do have a reunion committee and they are working on things to do now and events and ideas for the future. You can still join the committee by contacting Kate Quigley Lynch ’82, P’17, P’19 at Also you can receive more information at

     We have had several Zoom virtual calls and they have been attracting a large number of our classmates. Sometimes the calls are in conjunction with a current Wesleyan class so we can get a flavor of the current school environment. We hear some interesting ideas and topics and then break into groups of about six to eight people to refresh and reacquaint ourselves with our classmates.  For those who have missed them, more virtual events will be scheduled over the next few months. The next group of calls will have a theme with speakers from our class and the University on a specific topic.

     The ideas behind the pre-reunion Zoom calls are as follows: Build interest and participation for the Reunion, and unearth classmates by having them attend (and engage) or participate in the pre-reunion sessions; pilot some programming ideas for the future Reunion or to the reunion “Book.”

    The pre-reunion program category ideas are:

     1) Attract and motivate specialty interest segment groups. Programs: “Then vs. Now at Wesleyan” or “Looking Back Through Today’s Lens” (e.g. Athletics, Science, Humanities, Film and Theater Arts, Jewish Life, Women at Wesleyan, etc.), featuring faculty and students from “then” (67–71) and now.

     2) Attract general interest and enthusiasm by tapping into a wide mosaic of classmate accomplishments and journeys. 

     If you have other ideas or would like to create a Zoom call, contact Kate Lynch. These calls are a great way to catch up with classmates you have not seen, sometimes in over 50 years! These days who can honestly say they have not done a Zoom call? So do plan to Zoom-in for these calls! Information should be coming to you in emails. If you are not receiving them, please contact Kate.

     Another item that required your response was the reunion book. It is too late now to get into the book, but a supplement is planned for all you procrastinators. Contact Kate for more info. We hear from previous classes that when the book comes out those who are not included regret it and your classmates are sad not to have info on you.

   In other news . . . Ed Swanson ( says: “Jonathan Kramer asked about, among others, Walter Zdrok ’72. Walter (currently Vladimir) was my roommate freshman year and is living outside of Philadelphia. I talk to Vladimir occasionally, and will mention that Jonathan and Henry Sanders were wondering about him. He ended up graduating a year later than us, and so officially is class of 1972.”

     Neil Cumsky writes he has not been hearing about the Reunion and sends his new email address,                     Warren White ( has relocated to 1025 West Grace St. Apt. #515, Richmond, VA 23220.

     Well, that is all the news I have for now. Even though our 50th has been postponed (not canceled), please make an effort to join our future Zoom calls. Great fun!

CLASS OF 1971 | 2020 | ISSUE 3

Aloha classmates! As of writing, the planned 50th Reunion event has unfortunately been postponed. Expect details from Wesleyan soon! Regardless, the committee is generating wonderful ideas and events for our participation when we can meet in person. It will be well worth your while to attend. Reunion planning and fundraising for our reunion gift is happening all year long and if you want more information or to join the reunion committee, go to wesleyan

.edu/classof1971. Or if you want to get involved, contact Kate Quigley Lynch ’82, P’17, ’19.

We had our first Zoom virtual call and over 70 in our class registered. We heard some interesting ideas coming for the reunion and then broke into groups of about six people to refresh and reacquaint ourselves with our classmates. For those that have missed it, more virtual events will be scheduled over the next few months (potentially January, February and March). The next group of calls will have a theme with speakers from our class and the university on a specific topic 

The ideas behind the pre-reunion Zoom calls are as follows:

Build interest and participation for the reunion, and unearth classmates by having them attend (and engage) or participate in the pre-reunion sessions.

Pilot some programming ideas for the reunion or to the reunion “Book.”

Pre-reunion Program Category Ideas:

1) Attract and Motivate Specialty Interest Segment Groups

Programs: “Then vs. Now at Wesleyan” or “Looking Back Through Today’s Lens” (e.g., Athletics, Science, Humanities, Film and Theater Arts, Jewish life, women at Weslyan, etc), featuring faculty and students from “then” (’67–’71) and now.

2) Attract General interest and Enthusiasm by Tapping into Wide Mosaic of Classmate Accomplishments and Journeys 

These calls should be a great way to prepare for the reunion. So do plan to Zoom in for these calls! Information should be coming to you in emails. If you are not receiving them please contact Kate Lynch at 

Another item that requires your response regards the Reunion Book. Please respond ASAP with any changes as updated contact information will be used for all future mailings and communication. There is no need to respond if contact information is correct.

Everyone is urged to answer the questions you will receive from the 50th Reunion Book Committee and to submit a new and an “old” 

photo to be included in the book—people are most disappointed to find out they have not submitted anything when the hard copy of the book is mailed to the class in April 2021.

Sad news: Pam Kyrka, who is an active member of the 50th Reunion committee, informed us that her husband and our classmate Bob Kyrka passed away on July 21, 2020. He leaves behind Pam and their daughters, Kristin ’04, an immigration lawyer in Seattle, and Morgan, working and living in New Hampshire. Pam writes the following: “Bob died on July 21, 2020 after a long battle with Alzheimers. He was an avid runner, completing 26 marathons. He is missed by his wife Pam ’71, his  daughter Kristin ’04, his son Morgan, and his granddaughter Hazel, as well as many people whose animals he treated as a veterinarian.”

Jonathan Kramer wrote me and asked a question in search of fellow classmates. “Henry Sanders and I sat out in my backyard last week, ‘socially distanced,’ of course, going through the list of ’71 names, checking out whom we knew, whom we remembered, whom we were in contact with over the years. It occurred to me that no fewer than four members of my ‘Freshman Integrated’ program (remember that?) were not on the list. Checking each of their names with Google searches yielded no information. All four vanished. I don’t remember if, like me, the four did not graduate with the class; but still, Wesleyan has been in touch with me over the years, and I am not only on the ‘list’ but on the reunion committee as well. Have you information on any of these four: Gary Gianuzzi, James Vizzini, Paul Breger, and Walter Zdrok?”

Jonathan continues, “As for me, I am still playing and teaching cello, but now on Skype from my home. I retired from NC State University in January after 35 years, just in time to miss the campus chaos brought on by COVID-19. The college textbook on World Music I co-wrote . . . What in the World Is Music?, published in 2016 by Routledge/Taylor and Francis . . . is dedicated to ethno-mentor David McAllester from Wesleyan days, as well as my cello mentor Gordon Epperson and my colleague Alison Arnold’s ethno-mentor Bruno Nettl. We honor our teachers.” In answer to his question Vizzini and Breger were found and Jonathan can reach out to them. If anyone knows how to contact Gianuzzi and Zdrok please let Jonathan or Kate Lynch know. And if you have lost contact with someone from the class contact Kate for information.

Well that is all I have this time. Even though our planned reunion in May 2021 has been postponed, I’m looking forward to all of us being able to get together again. Keep an eye out for a new date, and feel free to join our frequent Zoom calls on various topics!


Neil J. Clendeninn |
PO Box 1005, Hanalei, HI 96714

CLASS OF 1971 | 2020 | ISSUE 2

Aloha. I hope you all are physically and mentally well during and after the quarantine. I got stranded in New Jersey and could not get home to Hawaii, so I spent my time in the epicenter. Thanks to all who sent brief 50-word updates.

John Schimmel is the executive producer of two films: A documentary about the Dalai Lama called The Great 14th: Tenzin Gyatso, The 14th Dalai Lama In His Own Words and Shaquille O’Neal Presents Foster Boy, which is based on true events and is about abuse in the for-profit foster care industry. See the trailers on Frame of Mind Film’s YouTube channel.

Mike Thompson: “As the class agent for my Hotchkiss class, my fellow agent and I sent out a brief email message last month—just to wish everybody good health and safety. It went to 67 classmates. To our delight and surprise, to date, 54 of them have responded, almost all of them multiple times. They have logged in from all across the country and around the world, and our little message sparked a desire to reconnect and recollect our days together. I wonder what sort of a response you’d get from the Wesleyan Class of 1971?”

Katy Butler has helped organize an ongoing monthly Zoom candlelight vigil sponsored by Reimagine and the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley. “On the 9th, starting in April, at noon Pacific time, we light candles and hold them to our screens to acknowledge the mass grief of the COVID pandemic. (The first was on the first of April.) It’s beautiful and powerful, and you’re welcome to join us. We end with ‘Lean on Me’ by Bill Withers. I’m hoping it will be replicated by other institutions.”

B. Michael Zuckerman retired in February after 37 years’ service as director of the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities in Cape May, N.J. He lives with his wife of 42 years, Evelyn, out in the wetlands bordering the intracoastal waterway.

C.B. “Kip” Anderson writes: “Richard Aroneau and I were just beginning to plan a Wes-fest on his lakeside property at Alford Lake in Maine. Anyone from any class who lives in Maine or can make the trip from elsewhere were to have been invited to spend the day or pitch a tent. But right now, and for the foreseeable future, such gatherings are not feasible.”

Miguel Gomez-Ibanez writes: “I have retired and now am president emeritus of North Bennet Street School in Boston. I have returned to my previous career as a cabinet and furniture maker, but doing it all for free.” Michael Brewin: “In 1970, the Connecticut Arts Commission asked me to coordinate music for the first Earth Day. Classmate Dave Lindorff and I performed at events statewide, including the capitol. Earth Day helped jump-start the environmental movement. My album Guitarsoul is at (and Amazon).”

Blake Allison asks: “Are you still doing the vanilla plantation?” (Answer is no; I stopped to sell two of my Kauai lots.) “Not a lot to report here as I have been in quarantine on Martha’s Vineyard for two months. Luckily, I’m with my wife, Lindsay, and son Sam ’06. So, our 50th Reunion is coming up next year! I’m motivated to be there in part because it would have been my father’s 80th Reunion, and he was a huge Wesleyan booster. I’m still architecting, and sort of hope to return to the office soon.”

First-timer Malcolm Cochran writes: “Here’s the CliffsNotes: Artist, educator, father, grandfather, single, out, gay man living in Columbus, Ohio. For more, please see my website:—and me at the Reunion.”

Fran Pawlowski says: “Our lives in Gallup, N.M., have been severely impacted by the COVID-19 virus. With a population of 20,000 residents, Gallup is surrounded by the Navajo reservation and is very dependent upon Navajo shoppers for its economic well-being. On some weekends, as many as 60,000 Navajos do their shopping here. Unfortunately, hundreds of Navajo people have become infected with the virus—and several have died. One member of my wife’s family (an uncle) has died from the virus, and his wife will probably die soon. The lockdowns which have occurred here recently were ordered by our governor for the mutual well-being of Gallup residents and Navajos. Our prayer is that the disease will peak very soon, begin to decline and ultimately disappear, so that everyone, in our area and all over the world, will again live virus-free. My wife and I ask readers to add their prayers to ours.”

Finally, the 50th Reunion is May 20-23, 2021. Reunion news and regional event info can be found at Join the committee and work on outreach, programming, or fundraising. Questions or want to get involved? Contact Kate Quigley Lynch ’82, P’17, ’19 at or 860/685-5992.

That is all for now. Be well and safe and see you May 2021.

Neil J. Clendeninn |
PO Box 1005, Hanalei, HI 96714

CLASS OF 1971 | 2020 | ISSUE 1

Aloha! Hope you are all prepared for a new decade: 2020s. To start, there is some sad news. Thurman Northcross ’70 passed away on June 20, 2019. He was a business manager, owner, and consultant. A graduate of Manassas High School, Thurman earned his bachelor’s with a major in economics from Wesleyan and an MS in industrial administration from Carnegie Mellon University. Among Thurman’s business enterprises were Stone Creek Corporation, a cleaning supplies company, and Signs First on Poplar Avenue. He worked for the City of Memphis as manager of youth services in the Summer Youth Program. He was also manager of corporate development for the Tennessee Valley Center for Economic Development.

Also, David E. Thomson ’71, MAT ’72 died Sept. 13, 2019, after a lengthy illness. A writer and poet, he will be remembered for his play, The Melting Pot, and his book, A Fellowship of Men and Women, among others. His wife, Alexandra Chalif (, shared this information.

Jay Resnick is working on a class, Forward into the Past—A Yiddish Reading Circle. In that class, they will read (in English) stories that were published in the Jewish Daily Forward in the 20th century. The text will be the 2017 anthology edited by Ezra Glinter, Have I Got a Story for You: More Than a Century of Fiction from The Forward. Jay said, “Mit grusen for a zisn yor,” which means “best wishes for a sweet year.”

Don Graham writes, “I am getting more nostalgic and sentimental in my old age. Maybe it’s the thought of attending the 50th anniversary of the 1969 football team, which occurred at Homecoming in November. Read your class notes in the Wesleyan magazine, as I always do, and three old friends appeared: Demetrie Comnas, Carey O’Laughlin, and Kip Anderson. Can’t believe our 50th Reunion is only a little more than a year away.”

Neil Cumsky is a “first-timer. What the heck? I can do this every 50 years or so. After Wes, graduated Yale Law and moved to Phoenix, where I practiced high-tech trade secrets litigation for 10 years during the formative years of the semiconductor and personal computer industries. Invested in Arizona real estate, which led to a career as a resort developer over the last several decades. Married to Claudia for 30-plus years with three kids: a doctor, a lawyer, and a publisher. Nothing but wonderful memories of Wes, surrounded by extraordinary people. Will definitely attend the 50th. Thank you, Neil, for carrying the communications torch for all of us for so many years!”

On that note—the 50th Reunion is May 20-23, 2021. Find out about Reunion news and regional events can be found at Join the Committee and work on outreach, programming, or fundraising. Questions or want to get involved? Contact Kate Quigley Lynch ’82, P’17, ’19 at or 860/685-5992.

That’s all the news for now. Please send me info and encouragements to get others to the Reunion next year. All the best in 2020. Aloha.

Neil J. Clendeninn |
PO Box 1005, Hanalei, HI 96714

CLASS OF 1971 | 2019 | ISSUE 3

Aloha. Here are the long notes I received last time but did not publish or cut severely.

Dave Lindorff writes: “On April 15 I received a 2019 Izzy award from the Park Center for Independent Media for outstanding independent journalism for a cover story run in the December 2018 issue of the Nation magazine titled “Exclusive: The Pentagon’s Massive Accounting Fraud Exposed.” It is really exciting for me to have finally, after 47 years working as an investigative journalist, won a national award that recognizes my work! Especially exciting is that it’s an award honoring the memory of I.F. Stone, one of the people who most inspired me to get into this profession and to pursue it independently rather than working on the staff of some corporate media organization, with all the compromises inevitably involved in that kind of thing.

“Moving on to more things now. At the moment I’m working on a documentary film project about the and death of Ted Hall, the man who, at the tender age of 18 as one of if not the youngest scientist working in Los Alamos on the Manhattan Project to build the atom bomb, decided, even before the dropping of the bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, that the prospect of the U.S. coming out of the war with a monopoly on nuclear weapons was too horrible to permit, and so, on his own with no connection to any Soviet spy ring, he walked the plans for the implosion device to the Soviet Consulate in New York, significantly helping the Russians to catch up and explode their own bomb in August 1949. Ted was never caught, but went public in 1996 as he was dying of cancer. U.S. government documents prove that the U.S. was planning, since even before the end of WWII, to obliterate Russia as an industrial power using its atomic bombs as soon as it got enough of them. Ted, it can now be proven, by his youthful courage and impulsivity, saved the world from a holocaust even worse than the one Hitler caused, and into the bargain helped give us 75 years of no nuclear weapons being exploded in war despite the existence of thousands of them in the hands of mutual antagonists (admittedly at enormous cost to all sides!). I’m still looking for more funding so if anyone wants to be a backer let me know.”

William H. “Bill” Hicks is a graduate of Wesleyan University who also holds a master’s in public health degree from the University of Oklahoma College of Public Health (1973). Bill also has studied at the Dallas Theological Seminary. He grew up in Harlem during the 1950s and 1960s before going away to prep school in Massachusetts, Mount Hermon School. He has spent most of his professional life in the public health arena in areas including policy research and analysis, health systems planning, and health systems and facility administration while being constantly in ministry. He received his license to preach the Gospel at Oklahoma City in 1971. He has written extensively on Christian topics including two books, Discipleship and Discipline: Second Edition and Sermon Outlines and Study Guides: Simple, Self-Directed Instructions On Being A Disciple (From The Perspective Of The Pew), with a third book pending publication. He enjoys life in Chattanooga with former District Public Defender Ardena Garth Hicks, his wife of 29 years and his two daughters, Rachel (BA, University of Memphis magna cum laude, 2014) and Sarah (Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude, Global Scholar, University of Tulsa, 2017).

Randy Stakeman is moving to Humble, Texas, north of Houston, to live with his son and family. He will have a small one-bedroom apartment in the house and access to his granddaughter.

First timer Mike Ronan writes: “I’ve retired to Panama, where Pam and I have a small craft coffee farm in the mountains near Boquete. It’s quite beautiful. After years of experiments—taxi driving, banking, Peace Corps, bartending, grad school, and marketing, in that order—I settled down as a comp and lit instructor at Houston Community College. I had never dreamed of teaching, nor administration, but it was very satisfying career, fulfilling a need to serve. Coffee farming is its own pleasure. A lot of effort goes into every bean. My two kids are writers and filmmakers. Before leaving the States, I had a chance to catch up with a couple of fellow oarsmen, Michael Mullally in Montreal and Buddy Coote in D.C. and I stay in touch with Roy Cramer.”

That is all the news this time. Remember the 50th Reunion is coming up. Contact Kate Quigley Lynch ’82, P’17, P’19 at or 860/685-5992 to get involved. We need your help! Aloha.

Neil J. Clendeninn |
PO Box 1005, Hanalei, HI 96714