CLASS OF 1990 | 2020 | ISSUE 2

We begin with the very sad news that our classmate Thea Trachtenberg passed away on April 12. Good Morning America, where Thea had worked for over 20 years, did a lovely tribute to her on

As Rebecca Rossen wrote: “It’s such a tragedy. She was so smart and funny. The ABC tributes are testaments to her amazing career, and just how respected and loved she was.”

Nina Grekin recalls getting together with Thea not long after the election of 2016 on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. “We had (a lot of) oysters, wine, and conversation that has held me to this day. She shared the reasoning of responsible journalism…She even indulged the volume and passion of my…ranting with curiosity, humor, and patience. We laughed loud and hard. In Judaism, we say, ‘May her memory be a blessing.’ And so, with my heart dropped down so deep, I can’t even hold it up…I will embrace my memories of Thea Trachtenberg and let them be a blessing.”

Sharene Azimi started a private Facebook group in memory of Thea and shared that “Thea became my best friend in college after we met the first day of freshman year in Foss 5. We lived together in Foss 8 and in High Rise and then lived three blocks apart on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Together we traveled to Italy, Egypt, and the weddings of various friends. We frequently spoke about everything and nothing—a continuous conversation that lasted for 33 years…. Thea was fierce and funny and independent, and I’ll remember her that way.”

Julie Doar-Sinkfield’s family is planning to relocate to Atlanta, Ga., from Weston, Fla. “We were supposed to move in July, but now, who knows? If the kids are in online school still or the real estate market tanks or whatever happens in this world the move might be as late as December. But Atlanta is the plan now.”

Lara Small Laurence writes that the “quarantine, while challenging, has created weekly connections with Wes folks. When I moved back to New York after grad school, a few Wes people and I, along with some other friends, started meeting regularly for Friday night services at one of the synagogues and for dinner. We continued meeting weekly until my kids were in elementary school, and almost everyone married and moved to the burbs.” The Shabbat group had a ritual where each person shared “Sweet Things of the Week.” Now, in quarantine, they are zooming with their families each Friday evening before Shabbat to share their sweet things. In the group are Michelle Elisburg ’92, Jennifer Hammer ’91, Shira Koch Epstein ’98, Tzvi Mackson ’89, and Jenny Simon Tabak ’93.

Lara said, “This time has become a highlight of my week. Currently, I’m hunkered down on Long Island, working as a learning specialist via Zoom, with my husband, Aviv (Vassar ’90), and my three children.”

Mark Hsieh sends greetings from Taiwan, “where early precautions have allowed us to contain the COVID-19 virus effectively and carry on life as usual with restrictions. I was particularly happy that Kazutoshi Ohkubo was able to visit Taiwan with his family before the whole pandemic made international travel next to impossible. I am glad to have had a nice coffee in Washington with Edward Ungvarsky when I attended the Invest USA Conference last year!” Mark sends wishes to everyone to stay safe during the pandemic and included photos of his and Kazu’s family in Taiwan and of him with Ed in D.C.

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Lara Goldmark sent an update to recognize the late Mike Mahon ’89, a fellow Wesleyan swimmer, and the group that gathered virtually with him a month ago and then again on May 22 to honor his passing: Jen Zoltners ’91, Dana Schultz ’91, Steve Jackman ’89, Dave Griffiths, Bill Fabbri ’91, Doug Bothner ’91, Jil Zilligen, Mark Mullen ’89, Mark Seasholes ’89, Courtney Fahy ’89, Karen Smolar ’88, Greg Lesser ’90, Dave Kane ’92, Morgan Bain ’92, Jono Marcus ’88, Dana Hoey ’89, swim team manager Nadine Angress ’90, friend of swimmers Ed Brown ’90, and Assistant Coach Diane Callaghan, who read a message from Coach John Ryan ’82. Lara has started a company called Just Results ( Summer internship positions were just filled, but Wes students are welcome to apply for the fall.

Netania Steiner writes from Brooklyn, “Sad that we’ll miss our Reunion but happy for the Wes friends who keep me sane. One silver lining of the stay-at-home life has been weekly Zoom parties with the Aloha Deck—my sophomore hall of Jon Bakija, Peggy Lionberger, Dan Gilman, Alan Busby, and Brett Terry.” Netania also speaks regularly with Amy Redfield ’89, who lives in St. Louis with her husband, Scott, and their dog Josie. “The Mutt to my Jeff, Rob Daniels ’88, lives in NYC with his wife, Laura Sherman ’88, and their two daughters.”

Finally, in May, our class celebrated its first-ever Virtual Reunion, or “ReZOOM-ion,” as it’s been called. While nothing can replace on-campus Reunion, the weekend was surprisingly fun and gave us a great opportunity to reconnect with classmates. We heard updates, broke into first-year residence halls, “met up” on Foss Hill, and participated in a deeply moving panel discussion with Professor of Psychology Emeritus Karl Scheibe, Carolyn Clark, Joy Challenger Slaughter, Deborah Gahr, and Andrew Siff. As successful as it was, remember that we WILL have a real Reunion on campus next year: May 28-30, 2021. Mark your calendars now!

Vanessa Montag Brosgol |

CLASS OF 1990 | 2020 | ISSUE 1

Hi, all! Happy New Year! We start with Al Viegas, whose eldest daughter, Alessandra ’20, will be graduating this May with a double major in American studies and English. Alessandra is an aspiring playwright. Al’s youngest applied to Wes and a few other NESCACs and “we will know her outcome by April, and of course I am hoping she can continue the legacy as a member of the Class of ’24 . . . crossing our fingers.”

Lawrence Jackson launched the Billie Holiday Project for Liberation Arts at Johns Hopkins, where he is Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of English and History. The BHPLA is conceived to share the resources of the university with Baltimore’s neighborhoods, steward African American archives, and to open up authentic pathways of mutual creativity that help to alleviate the historic socio-economic inequity of the city. Lawrence would love to have Wes classmates from around the region participate; they can also tag donations for BHPLA to JHU, where Elena Weathers ’91 is an officer. On Sept. 12, “we will have our second annual free concert in homage to Billie Holiday in Lafayette Square in Sandtown (always the first Saturday after Labor Day). I won a Guggenheim award in 2019 and am working this year on a book about returning to Baltimore, where I live with my oldest son Nathaniel who is now 15. I am also writing and making digital map presentations about Holiday, Frederick Douglass, and race and American western films.”

Edward Ungvarsky’s wife Olivia Smith ’92 founded Bridges PCS, a public charter school in Washington, D.C., whose mission is inclusive education for children with and without special needs. Bridges is a go-to elementary school for parents whose children have high-level special needs and for parents whose children speak English as a second language. Bridges’ charter was just renewed for another 15 years. “I shared a meal with fellow RA and now frequent marathoner Mark Hsieh when he was in town from Taiwan, our first time together in too many years. Our daughters, Nola and Lena, are teenagers, with the triumphs and trials of teenagers. We were all campaigning for friend Michael Bennet ’87, Hon.’12 in New Hampshire in February.”

Becky Lloyd DesRoches ’90, MA’90, lives in Lexington, Mass., with her husband and two boys, though her eldest is a freshman studying music technology at Carnegie Melon University. Becky loves her job as an assistant professor of psychology at Regis College and works with Heidi Webster. Becky sings in a number of groups. She’s a frequent soloist with the Lexington Pops choir and will tour NYC this spring with the Regis glee club. As at Wes, Becky fills her days with academics, sports, and music. Becky is hoping to release a CD of original music this spring.

After many years of practicing technology law and consulting at big firms, Adam Cohen has launched his own firm, Digital Discipline LLC, providing integrated legal and technical services in cybersecurity, data privacy, information governance, and electronic discovery. He “hopes it will be successful enough to pay tuition for his two kids currently at expensive private universities (not Wesleyan).”

Sarah Townsend, psychotherapist, teacher, and author of Setting the Wire: A Memoir of Postpartum Psychosis, was recently featured in an interview with NPR. Sarah shares her visceral experience of psychosis after the birth of a child. Listen to it at

Jessica Mann Gutteridge has been appointed artistic managing director of the Chutzpah! Festival and the Norman Rothstein Theatre, which are operated by the Jewish Community Centre of Greater Vancouver. Jessica is looking forward to bringing exciting performing arts programming to the festival and hopefully seeing old friends as she travels on her search. She is serving on the board of the Vancouver International Burlesque Festival, “which is as glittery and fun as it sounds. Last year I participated in the Cultural Leadership Program at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, working with arts leaders from across North America, in what I like to think of as Hogwarts for artists.” Jessica would love for Wes folk passing through Vancouver to say hi.

Finally, congratulations to Nora Wade (now Wade-Schultz) who wrote in with news that she got married on Aug. 22!

Vanessa Montag Brosgol |

CLASS OF 1990 | 2019 | ISSUE 3

Hi, all! Very quiet this time around, but we do have big news from Ben Klau and Joan Gundersen Klau. So great to hear from them that “at a time when notes from our class are typically filled with news of our classmates’ children heading off to high school and college,” Ben and Joan “are proud to announce the birth of their second daughter, Hannah Rose Klau, born on May 29. The whole family, including Hannah’s big sister, Avery, 4, went on an extended East Coast summer tour in August, which included visits with Meg Steele Barker in Bath, Maine, and Amy Robins, who lives in Joan’s hometown of Milton, Mass.”

Since we have extra space, I thought I would throw out the fact that our 30th Reunion is next spring. I so clearly remember moving into Foss 7 in 1986 that I find it hard to believe that so many years have passed. More information will be coming and I’m hoping to hear from lots of you as we move toward this next milestone.

Right before printing, we were saddened to learn that our classmate David Bucci passed away on Oct. 15. David’s obituary can be found here. We send our condolences to his friends and family, including his wife Catherine “Katie” Hancur and his three children, Joshua, Ava, and Lila, and welcome any memories that people would like to share in an upcoming edition of the notes.

Vanessa Montag Brosgol |

CLASS OF 1990 | 2019 | ISSUE 2

Hi, all. Hoping by the time this arrives that everyone will have been enjoying the summer. Here’s what we have:

Becky Lloyd DesRoches is pursuing academics, music, and sports. Becky is a psychology professor at Regis College and lives in Lexington, Mass. Becky stays involved in several music groups and sports teams. In January, she performed Beethoven’s Mass in C Major as a soloist for the Lexington Pops chorus. Married to David, with two kids, she says she’s “still overextended but we try to get up to the White Mountains as often as possible for skiing, hiking, and other fun activities.”

Persis Howe, after living in London for 20 years and “finally dragging my family to the U.S. last year,” has been enjoying Berkeley and meeting up with Wes folks in the Bay Area.

Catharina Schuetz is an associate professor in pediatric immunology at Dresden University, taking care of children with rare diseases (immunodeficiencies and immune dysregulation syndromes). Catharina, who was an international student, plans to send her eldest son, Florian, to Wes for a year in 2022, as “I only have excellent memories from my two years there.” Catharina misses her friend April Cotte ’91, who passed away in 2018.

Sarah C. Townsend’s debut book Setting the Wire: A Memoir of Postpartum Psychosis was published in April by the Lettered Streets Press. The book weaves together personal anecdote, film, music, visual art, and psychology in its exploration of postpartum psychosis. Sarah writes, teaches, and practices psychotherapy in Seattle:

Paul Nikitopoulos wrote in for the first time to share that, after years working in corporate law, mostly in New York, he went to business school and has been involved in plastics manufacturing and, more importantly, recycling (of PET bottles) in Southeast Asia. Paul plans to open a new facility within the next few months.

So long for now. Keep me posted. I always love hearing from you!

Vanessa Montag Brosgol |

CLASS OF 1990 | 2019 | ISSUE 1

Class of 1990 Scholarship
Bryden Auer ’21, Lake Oswego, OR

Edward Ungvarsky received the Bill Geimer Award from the Virginia Capital Case Clearinghouse of Washington and Lee School of Law for his almost 10 years of service and successful outcomes as a dedicated capital defender. Ed’s string of successes was capped by the October 2018 unanimous life sentence verdict for his client in a county whose prosecutor had never before failed to obtain a death sentence in 50 years in office. Ed has mentored Melanie Berman ’17, Patricia Merlino ’18, Anna Oakes ’17, Maria Rodriguez-Castro ’19, and William Dempsey ’19. It was a class at Wesleyan that led Ed to this line of work, so he feels indebted to Wesleyan both professionally and for his wife, Olivia Smith ’91.

Jennifer Palmer and her husband attended the fabulous 50th birthday party of Jennifer’s Gingerbread housemate, Schuyler Allen-Kalb in New York. “It was amazing to reconnect with friends including—but not limited to—Liz Pelcyger, Letitia Pinero, and Majora Carter. The party, of course, was a blast, complete with a photo/gif booth & John Hughes movies projected in the bar/dance area of the venue.”

Page Fortna, the Harold Brown Professor in the department of political science at Columbia University, is spending a sabbatical year with her family in Sri Lanka. She is living in Colombo, conducting research on the recent civil war, and “exploring this fascinating, chaotic, and beautiful country.”

Carole Trone is warding off middle-age by throwing “herself into new worlds: a new virtual college-access nonprofit started by college students called Fair Opportunity Project, and working out of a new co-working space for entrepreneurs in Madison, Wis.”

John Collins is teaching in the global studies department at St. Lawrence University, directing Weave News, an independent media platform focusing on underreported stories and making 80s-influenced indie rock with Bee Children.

Elizabeth Friedman Haybron wrote to update that her husband, Dan Haybron, with the completion of his Templeton Happiness project, has been selected as the inaugural Theodore R. Vitali C.P. Chair of Philosophy at Saint Louis University. “This is quite an honor for Dan and is even that much more special since Ted, the former chair of the SLU Philosophy department for 28 years, pledged his own savings to make the chair possible. We continue to live in St. Louis, with our 3 kids, all of whom have graduations this year—Sarah from high school and William and Michael from middle school.”

Sharene Azimi and her husband moved last fall from the Philadelphia area to the small town of Bernardsville, N.J., so that he could take a job at Verizon’s HQ. Sharene continues to do communications consulting for nonprofit organizations around the country, in between taking care of their 7 and 4 year old boys. “We are on a very slow train line to Manhattan, but it’s basically country here. Wes folk driving by on Route 78 or I-287 are welcome to stop in for a visit!”

James Rosenblatt writes in with big changes in his household.  “We are officially empty nesters with our youngest heading off to SMU last fall. Our oldest is engaged to be married, & we are clearly moving to a new phase in our lives.  The practice of law continues to be a full-time occupation with our office moving into a new building last June and the hiring of our eighth attorney.”

Bill Sherman has been in Seattle since 1999, where he heads up an environmental protection division of the state attorney general’s office, prosecuting big polluters and, lately, suing the Federal government to stop rollbacks of environmental laws. He gets outside to bike and hike a lot and last summer led a group of 26 conservationists, including his boss, the attorney general, on a 20-mile backpack trip on the Washington coast. Bill’s wife, Holly, teaches anthropology at the University of Washington. Their older son is a first year at Whitman College & younger son is a 10th grader. “I run into Wesleyan people all over Seattle, including Julie Shapiro ’77, Roger and Sarah Townsend ’90, and Tara Urs ’98. Last summer, we got to host Carolyn Clark and David Patterson’s daughter Bridget while she was interning at the UW, which came with a bonus visit by Carolyn!”

Rose Duhan is living in Delmar, N.Y., near Albany, also home of Wes alumni Brion Winston ’97 and Melanie Schoen ’97 and just got to see an amazing production of The Count: A Musical written, composed and performed by Brion with David Hollander, and also starring their daughter, Willa. Rose is running a small non-profit that advocates for community health centers: championing primary care for underserved in New York State. Rose “has the honor and privilege to work closely with Harold Iselin ’77, in my work.”

Victor Khodadad recently directed Kamala Shankaram’s opera Enchantress, based on the life of Ada Lovelace, for New Camerata Opera. The performance took place at The Flea Theater in New York City in December. Coming up, Victor will be singing the role of The Male Chorus in Benjamin Britten’s powerful opera The Rape of Lucretia which will take place in May at The Flea Theater. Camerata Piccola, the branch of New Camerata Opera that produces children’s opera, has been very active having debuted their newest offering, Rumpelstiltskin, as well as performing Peter Rabbit with the Montclair Orchestra which was conducted by it’s music director David Chan, concertmaster of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. More information about the upcoming season is available at

JR Rhodes: “My highlights for 2018 were getting commissioned to create songs for Alice Walker and Nikki Giovanni and performing for them both at two separate events at Benaroya Hall here in Seattle, Washington. The song I wrote for Alice Walker was based on a piece from her new book, Taking the Arrow Out of the Heart. The song is titled “Ancestors Never Sleep” after one of her pieces in the new book. The song I wrote for Nikki Giovanni was based on a piece from her new book, A Good Cry. The song is titled “The Fly on the Wall” after one of her pieces in the new book.

“Both performances were life changing events. I got to meet two of my heroines and they both really enjoyed the songs I created inspired by their works. Nikki smiled and said she really enjoyed the song. Alice smiled waiting for me with open arms backstage after my performance to thank me. It was an incredible gift share the music and to thank my heroes and heroines face to face, eye to eye.”

Vanessa Montag Brosgol |

CLASS OF 1990 | 2018 | ISSUE 3

I’ve noticed a correlation between turning 50 and prolific writing. Lots of news this time around so heavy editing was required.

Victor Khodadad, is the cofounder of New Camerata Opera that just finished an extremely successful second season. The company’s seven co-founders (all active singers) make all decisions democratically and share all duties. The organization has three branches: NCO, for main stage productions; Camerata Piccola, for children’s operas; and CamerataWorks, for in-house video productions that include The Ives Project, which will be releasing videos of Charles Ives’ art songs on YouTube. Wesleyan Professor of Music Neely Bruce played on the recording of nine Charles Ives songs. Victor gave a Tedx Talk on innovation in the arts in December 2016.

Laurel Stegina is living in Deep River, Conn., and has been working at a planning consulting firm for almost 15 years. Laurel wears several hats, including environmental planner and senior project manager, specializing in NEPA and permitting. Laurel was promoted to assistant director of operations, with a focus on professional development of staff, mentoring, and career coaching. As an owner, she is involved with strategic planning and governance issues. “Although no longer part of the ’monkey wrench gang,’ I remain passionate about environmental and social justice issues.”

After 13 years working for Framingham, Mass., public schools as a counselor (with Sarah Guernsey ’92, Gina Capodilupo ’03, and Cora Jeyadame ’96), Tim Hintz started with Brookline Public Schools this fall. Tim celebrated turning 50 with some local friends, including Amy Robins and Denise Casper. Tim has been cleaning out his childhood home near Chicago, where he had dinner with Andy Griffin, his wife, Catherine, and their daughters, Lulu and Meg. He “found some true treasures, including the Wesleyan pencils given to me by Andrea Morse ’89 when I was accepted (they still work) and an original Wes sweatshirt with the tags from Atticus still on (still fits!).” Tim discovered that his 8th grade diploma was signed by the class of ’55 secretary, Donald Braverman ’55. Tim has twin 15-year-old sons and a 10-year-old daughter.

Persis Howe moved from “dark and cold London to sunny California” to work for the City of San Francisco on their digital services. “My kids love Berkeley, especially having green, blue, and purple hair, and no school uniforms” and Persis is “enjoying not being the loud American always. I’ve already managed to meet a few Wes folks in the Bay Area, but would love to find more! On the downside, my husband is not enjoying the constant changes to U.S. immigration rules.”

Peter Gravin writes, “I know many of us, including me, are celebrating our 50th birthdays this year. Yikes. So, I asked myself, what’s the best way to avoid entering into a mid-life crisis? A baby!” Peter and his wife, Ramona, welcomed Arlo Benjamin Gravin in January and “couldn’t be more pleased with him.” Peter has already been asked (including by an OR doctor!) if Arlo is his grandson, and is “prepared for a sharp increase in those questions as he gets older. It’s totally worth it, though.” Peter is finding parenthood a “great way to keep feeling young and energetic!” He sends congratulations to Kok Chong, who also had a baby last year, and asks if there are any other new parents among us.

On the subject of parents/grandparents, Jeffrey Needelman wrote on his 50th birthday to share the birth of his second grandchild, Nola Afia Asantiwaa Ansuh. Jeffrey reminded me that when his grandson was born over two years ago, I commented that he was the first grandparent I knew of in our class. That’s still the case, but here’s my official request for any other grandparents to please come forward.

Finally, Dr. Debbie Gahr writes about NYC alumni celebrating collective 50th birthdays at her place. Despite their advanced ages, they had a fabulous time! The strong Gingerbread showing included Debbie, Schuyler Allen-Kalb, Nina Grekin, Ed Brown, and Kate Hardin. “To make it a Gingerbread coast-to-coast celebration we FaceTimed Todd Thorner in California (Eric Greene, we need your number!).”

Debbie loved catching up with Carolyn Clark and Dave Patterson, Iriss Shimony, Andrew Siff, Susan Wong, Stephanie Donohue Pilla, Eugenie Kim, and Kati Koerner. There were guest appearances from nearby classes, including Elaine Perlman ’89 and her husband Len Bernstein, Lauren Levy ’91, Marni Pedorella ’91, Melissa Sobel ’91, Becky Rumayor ’91, Lilli Link ’89 and Jay Rosenberg ’83, Mike Santoli ’92, Ellen Friedman Bender ’82 and Sam Bender ’82, and Melissa Resnick P’20 who brought her daughter, Emily Koh ’20.

Debbie’s three children, Rebecca (16), David (13), and Ricky (10), “are all super happy and enjoying their respective tap dance, tennis, and baseball endeavors.” Debbie “appreciated hearing from all the folks who almost made it to this shindig and sent their good wishes.” Debbie’s husband, Roy Pomerantz, enjoyed the party too. Debbie is trying to get him to admit that Wesleyan is way cooler than Columbia.

Vanessa Montag Brosgol |

CLASS OF 1990 | 2018 | ISSUE 2

Hi all. I hope everyone has been enjoying the summer. Here’s what we have:

I’ve started to lose count, but our class certainly seems to have a growing number of Wes parents in our midst. Joining the club are Alexis Neaman Roberts and Chris Roberts ’89 who are very excited that they will be on campus more frequently for the next four years—visiting their daughter Beatrix ’22!

It was also great to hear from Ruben “Bengy” Ballesteros, who remains a staff attorney at Legal Aid in the Baltimore area, specializing in juvenile and foster care cases. Joy Challenger Slaughter moved to Alexandria, Va., and would love to connect with some Wesfolk soon!

Writing to our class notes for the first time is Graham Guest, who has a bunch of great news. First, in 2016, Graham’s philosophical novel, Winter Park, was published by Atmosphere Press. Second, in 2017, Moses Guest, Graham’s band, put out its seventh album, Light. Finally, in 2018, Definition, a work of Graham’s in the philosophy of lexicology, was published by Floating Records Press.

Carol Booth was awarded the Helen Diller Family Award for Excellence in Jewish Education in their Informal Education category.

Carol help started the Jewish Baby Network in the San Francisco Bay Area. The award is for her work with Jewish Baby Network. The award includes $2,500 for Jewish Baby Network and $10,000 for Carol. “The goal of Jewish Baby Network is to bring together Jewish community organizations and funders to create programs for parents with babies and toddlers. The focus is on community building and connection. We add over 100 member families each year and now have two chapters in the Bay Area, and we will add one more chapter in 2019. The award is very exciting for me personally and also for Jewish Baby Network. It recognizes the need for Jewish organizations to create supportive programs for families with babies and toddlers. I love the work, especially since I get to hold and play with lots of babies!”

Carol’s son, Josh, is still enjoying Seattle, and her daughter, Naomi, just finished her first year at Barnard College. Her youngest is finishing her junior year of high school. “I am trying to convince her to apply to Wes, but we will see.” David Booth ’91 is the rabbi at Congregation Kol Emeth in Palo Alto. “The congregation is in the middle of rebuilding its entire facility, so currently the synagogue site is a large hole in the ground. The new building should be completed by January. In the meantime, we are truly wandering Jews having services and events all over the community. We leave soon for a four-week vacation to Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore, which I think will be enough adventures to last us through the year!”

Kate Hardin, in Boston, has taken on a new focus at work, leading a couple of projects on low-carbon transportation, looking specifically at the impact of electric vehicles and ride hailing on global oil demand. Kate and her family are gearing up for summer with their 13-year-old headed to camp in western Massachusetts for a month, and their 10-year-old taking sailing lessons on the Charles. Kate has been in touch with Debbie Gahr, whom she saw when she was in New York recently to see Dear Evan Hanson. “I also wanted to say thanks to Wes for the excellent article in the alumni mag on the book, Blood Sugar—it’s on the reading list!”

Finally, we have Mark Cooper as another first-time class notes contributor. Mark is a professor at the University of South Carolina, and has a new coauthored book coming out in August that might interest folks: Media U: How the Need to Win Audiences Has Shaped Higher Education (Columbia UP). Mark and his coauthor, John Marx, also blog about higher education issues at

That’s all for now. Please send news for the next issue!

Vanessa Montag Brosgol |


CLASS OF 1990 | 2018 | ISSUE 1

Class of 1990 Scholarship

Bryden Tierney Auer ’21, Lake Oswego, OR

Happy New Year! Here’s what we have for 2018, when many of us will be turning 50(!):

Laurie Baum is the middle school director of a progressive school in Brooklyn called Greene Hill School. Laurie was hired to plan and launch the middle school division “and it has been exciting to be part of a new and growing school. We graduated our first class of 8th graders in June. Greene Hill is committed to social justice and is unusual for independent schools in NYC because it has a sliding-scale tuition.”

Jennifer Teitelbaum Palmer is president of the Maryland Psychiatric Society, her local branch of the American Psychiatric Association. In that role, she is asked to write regular columns for their publications.“I just submitted an essay contemplating whether Alexander Hamilton suffered from type two bipolar disorder, in the context of my frank obsession with fellow Cardinal Lin-Manuel Miranda ’02’s musical and the biography upon which it was based. Wesleyan just keeps giving!”

Other big news: two more members of our class are becoming Wes parents. Dan Jewelewicz writes from Delray Beach, Fla., where he has been for 18 years (“has it really been that long?”). Dan is busy with his ophthalmology practice and has four children: identical twin girls, 13; a son, 16; and daughter, 18. “Although we don’t live on a farm, it feels that way: we have two dogs, two cats, two rabbits, two horses, one parrot, and a pot-bellied pig named JellyBean. Our big news is that eldest daughter, Natalya, got accepted early to Wes. She is super-excited; I’m really proud of her. I’m looking forward to being back on campus a lot in the next few years.”

Our second Wes-parent-to-be is Gabriella Nawi who writes that “my son was accepted to Wesleyan, class of 2022, so that is exciting.” Gabi will be starting a new role at Travelers in 2018, as head of financial planning for personal insurance.

Finally, after seven years as CEO of 826 National, Gerald Richards “decided to move on and see what the next adventure in life would be. After a sabbatical of six months, with travel to New Zealand, Australia, Japan, France, and Scotland, I decided to accept the role of CEO for a new nonprofit called The Superpower Agency in Edinburgh, Scotland. The Superpower Agency is a nonprofit dedicated to improving the writing skills of students in Edinburgh through fun and creative writing workshops and programs. I am excited to be living overseas for the first time and working on my Scottish brogue. Before I left, I had the opportunity to have drinks and dinner with David Patterson, Carolyn Clark, Nina Grekin, Linda Turnbull, Claude Szyfer and his wife Elana, Laurie Malkin, and Iriss Shimony. It was a lovely sendoff. If people are ever out this way, come visit!”

Thanks to those of you who wrote. That’s all for now.

Vanessa Montag Brosgol |