CLASS OF 1977 | 2020 | ISSUE 3

 Several fine notes have been received during this unprecedented year reminding me of the power of connection. Being in touch has been a lifeline to us all who were so used to freely travel- ing or gathering in groups without a second thought but have not for some time now. I have described this year for myself as one of recalibration: shifting priorities to maintaining good health, appreciating all that we have and displaying civility and kindness to others. Here is to the hope these lessons remain long after vaccines have been distributed and we resume our faster paced lives.

Paul Meisel’s son Andrew was married in Maine this September. Paul’s latest book My Stinky Summer by S. Bug came out this summer: a scientifically accurate “diary” by a brown marmorated stink bug. Paul has two books ready for release including My Tiny Life by Ruby T. Hummingbird and You Poop Here, a book on potty training. 

Andy Darpino is hoping to celebrate his daughter’s wedding in January 2021 after this past summer’s postponement. Once this event is completed, he will consider retirement. 

Bruce Kaplan writes from Chattanooga, Tennessee that he retired from his neurology practice and runs Barking Legs Theater with his wife with a focus on dance and music events. They have been creative by streaming shows and holding outdoor events with full social distancing including “Drive-In” Dances. Bruce keeps in touch with Mac Scott as well as recently met up with Cynthia Dembrow to share thoughts and feelings surrounding the recent deaths of parents. Bruce is thankful that Maco Stewart introduced him to Bill Monroe’s Bluegrass Boys at Wesleyan prior to becoming a resident of Tennessee. 

Ellen Gendler is practicing and teaching dermatology in Manhattan. Ellen was stricken with COVID-19 in March; she experienced how onerous it is to maintain the safety of patients and staff. Ellen and her husband were able to retreat to the Berkshires to recover, which I am pleased to report she has. Son Jonathan is chief resident in medicine at Massachusetts General where he receives great career advice from Jim Udelson. He also provided Ellen with their first grandchild. Younger son Michael graduated from law school in May and begins his law career in January. Ellen sends regards to Richard Parad, who she fondly remembers studying bio with at the Science Library, many long years ago.

 Hal Garneau writes that while rooming in Foss Hill 5, he met Dan Waters with whom he became close friends, grew inseparable, fell deeply in love and have been together ever since: “46 wonderful years.” Both Hal and Dan are retired in Hal’s hometown of Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. Hal sends a special hello to all friends and fellow dorm-mates from Foss Hill 5, which I believe is still standing. A dormitory was built on the adjacent site of a former playing field. 

John Fink recently took the reins of Aloha United Way in Oahu. As so much of Hawaii’s economy is tourism based, the state has been hit especially hard. John is on the front lines providing relief on many fronts for the struggling population. As many have reported, not being to see your children or grandchildren is especially frustrating, albeit understandable. Quoting John: “Some people will look back at the horrid year of COVID-19 and talk about how they made it through, I would prefer to look back and say that I helped make a difference: that’s why we are all here in the first place.” John’s book Think About It, a compilation of editorials from 2000 to 2018, is available from Amazon. 

Johnathan Gertler reports that he is well, along with his family, especially his two-and-a-half-year-old granddaughter Jhie. He is grateful to be a part of the health care community and has new music coming out soon. I smiled reading through Keith Stern’s note as I had the pleasure of being his architect for a new chapel and renovation of his temple in Newton, Massachusetts, for which Keith is rabbi. It is frustrating in that people cannot use the completed spaces. But they will! The adage that an “architect is only as good as his client” was never truer. Keith is still married after 40 years and has all five kids and grandchildren on the eastern seaboard. He completed his note stating he is studying astrophysics in his spare time and wears a mask. 

Don Spencer is keeping his spirits up as he fights cancer by working hard at his firm, kayaking, biking, and obsessively buying fine watches. Even though he’s been out of touch with so many alums, he would welcome calls or (socially distanced) visits to his Westport home or NYC apartment (visitors to Westport will be required to ride in his Boston Whaler!). He can be reached at 646-691-7457 (mobile), 203-662-0123 (landline) or

 Susan Jacobson writes from Portland that as owner of a consulting company serving nonprofits, she has been helping a range of organizations weather the pandemic. Family, including her two sons, are well and live locally. She attended some protests and is proud of her city for supporting “Black Lives Matter” so diligently and thoroughly. Susan remains hopeful for the future that our higher ideals will some day be realized. 

Tom Roberts is enjoying following his son’s freshman year progress at Wesleyan; he has joined the football team though no games were scheduled in 2020.

Susan White is continuing to teach, remotely of course, at Boston University School of Medicine. She has taken to the challenge of reconnecting with folks and a rapid adaptation to a huge number of new platforms. So far so good! 

To all I send you best wishes for a fine and healthy 2021!

Gerry Frank |

CLASS OF 1977 | 2020 | ISSUE 2

To be sure, the coronavirus pandemic has changed all our lives forever. The desire to connect, be in touch, has increased as we adjust to Zoom gatherings and other methods that allow us to continue work as well as survive during the time of social isolation. Slowing the pace of our day-to-day lives has had a positive effect in that we make time for reaching out, as well as perhaps cook and eat better, get some exercise, meditate, whatever. With this, I am delighted to be in touch with so many classmates via Zoom and others by phone calls and notes sent along.

Carol Weiss is doing well sheltering at home in Westchester with her husband and two of her three kids. Everyone is healthy. She is avoiding her office in Manhattan: enjoying seeing all her patients virtually. Dave Schreff sends best regards to friends Bob Yorburg, Michele Druker, Martha Meade ’76, Eric Zimmerman, and Don Lowery. Dave Levit, along with wife Ruth, lives in Amherst, Mass., where they have been since 1989. As clinical psychologists, they are adjusting to doing sessions by videoconference in the time of COVID. Dave remarks that both his daughter and son are staying in the family business: Becca completed a master’s in school counseling, Jeremy is a second-year medical student awaiting his clinical rotation in psychiatry in Brooklyn.

Dorothy Crenshaw had a Zoom happy hour with pals Marianne Diorio and Vanessa Burgess, commiserating about the pandemic in NYC, sharing gratitude at being healthy. She has been texting with Don Ryan; she managed a visit with Don, George Capone, and Cal Dysinger last October when they traveled to join her at a Steely Dan concert at the Beacon Theatre. Dorothy is busier than ever with her PR firm. She is sheltering in place in Manhattan (unlike the many who have fled) and, as an older parent, lucky that her 16-year-old daughter is still living at home and not off somewhere alone.

David Dranoff is hunkering down in Oak Park, Ill., where he has lived with wife Wendy for 28 years. Like many of us, David is working remotely, wondering if this is the time to put the work thing aside: wondering what will be the next stage of life. His kids are healthy, though not all remain employed due to the pandemic. Iddy Olson is now commuting from master bedroom to office/bedroom 12 feet away. She can’t imagine taking a train, parking, walking a half-mile each way again. Her husband, Tom, has had some health challenges in what was assumed to be a mild case of the coronavirus. He does appear to be turning the corner, which comes at a great relief to us all.

Jim Melloan is doing well in Brooklyn: had a nice Zoom session with Rich Shulman a couple of weeks ago; also in touch with Marisa Smith ’78, Miriam Wolf, and James Lyons via email. Joan Goldfeder is staying busy with a PAC that supports Democratic, pro-choice, female candidates in California and nationally. She is seeing lots of great candidates via Zoom. Joan’s son just finished college at Bucknell; she is extremely proud of his accomplishments.

John Fink has a new book out compiling his TV editorials from the past 19 years in Hawaii, published by Watermark Publishing. To quote: “When the world comes out of its largest-ever ‘timeout,’ I plan to do seminars about ‘making a difference.’” Before the shutdown, John met up with Rick Dennett and with Peter Guenther in New York. He also dropped in on former roomie, Scott Director. Lisa Brummel is working from home as a recruiter in the financial services field. Lisa is in touch with Lorraine Schwarz, among others. Her eldest son graduated from Dickinson College, and her younger son is a junior at American University. I had a nice exchange with Iddy, Mike Coffey, and Ted Stevens, sending along their good wishes. Ted and Iddy revealed their one real complaint being the inability to interact with their grandchildren, which is a sentiment echoed a lot by others in our class.

Additionally, I have been fortunate enough to be included in a cross-the-globe Zoom session with Jane Goldenring, Janet Malkemes, Ruth McMahon, Kate Seeger, Laraine Balk Hope, Wendy Giardina, Richard Parad, and Bob Katz. We organized a film club that appropriately began with each of us viewing The Big Chill and coming together to discuss via Zoom. Good stuff.

Here is hoping we all keep safe and sound during these days ahead. Best wishes to all, family and friends, during this extraordinary time.

Gerry Frank |

CLASS OF 1977 | 2020 | ISSUE 1

Retirement and our 65th birthdays are a recurring theme in many of this round of class notes.

This January Mark Slitt celebrated his “Medicare birthday.” Probably among the first in our class to do so. Mark writes: “Heads up to all: You will soon receive an avalanche of mail from insurance companies (maybe even my employer Cigna, depending on what state you live in) about Medicare Advantage plans and invitations from AARP to purchase Medicare supplemental (Medigap) plans through them. Don’t worry, it’s okay, Boomer! You’ll figure it out!”

Mark is still working at Cigna and won’t retire for several more years. He now in his 10th year on the planning committee for the Connecticut LGBTQ Film Festival, the longest-running film festival of any kind in Connecticut (33 seasons).

Arnie Alpert plans to retire in June after nearly 39 years with the American Friends Service Committee’s New Hampshire Program. As one of the state’s most respected activist leaders, a fund has been established in his name, the Arnie Alpert Action Fund. AFSC supporters can honor Arnie’s legacy with funds that will help the organization continue the education, advocacy, training, and bold action Arnie has modeled. Arnie enjoys running into recent New Hampshire residents Felice Burstein and John Roxby.

After 35 years in D.C., Rus Hemley has moved to Chicago. Rus will be the chair of natural sciences in the department of physics and chemistry at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Jason Baron continues his fine work in Cambodia through the Chelly Foundation, supporting Chelly scholars at universities in Phnom Penh as well as younger children of Chumkuri in rural Kampot Province. Donations can be made through the Chelly website:

Karen Bovard ’77, MALS ’85 retired to Saint Paul, Minn., in 2016 to be closer to baby grandchildren, along with husband Greg Pyke (longtime Wesleyan admission dean). She’s recently back from her 11th trip to Cambodia, this time to celebrate the Arts4peace Festival with friends and family. She spends much of her time sewing as a volunteer for Days for Girls, making reusable feminine hygiene kits that enable girls to stay in school past puberty and help to prevent both early marriage and sexual exploitation of girls in 140-plus countries around the world. Karen continues her theater work (she directed more than 70 shows in her career) as an online reviewer in the busy Twin Cities theater scene.

Mark Ellison writes, “Life is good.” He has been consulting for Rubrik, a data management startup and, thus far has not been told “OK Boomer” by these “youngstahs.”

Mike Coffey continues to beat a path to Southern Cal to see daughter Lanie. She finished grad school in 2018 and started her career as a dietitian/supervisor at a WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) Center in L.A. The Coffeys just spent their fourth Christmas season on the West Coast—this one in Santa Barbara. He’ll be heading back to see Lanie for a reggae fest in February. Daughter Jessie is engaged, with a wedding date of Oct. 2, 2020, in Newport. So, naturally, mom and dad are thrilled. While wife Laurie retired, Mike is still GM at Rite-Solutions, a small-ish software development and IT company in Newport.

Mim Wolf had been feeling strong urges to travel and see more of the world over the past several years, and finally, in November 2018, followed through, spending seven months exploring Costa Rica, Germany, Egypt, South India, Sri Lanka, Peru, and Mexico. Mim traveled solo with a backpack and totally enjoyed living in the moment, traveling by public buses, being helped by kind strangers, eating simple vegetarian foods, and experiencing bits and pieces of the various cultures and values surrounding her. She felt completely safe the entire time, and came home from those travels relaxed, rested, and replenished. Since then, Mim is back to private practice as a natural health consultant, in-person and over the phone. She appreciates the many blessings of life in Vermont; she is grateful to have seen a bit of this amazing planet, struggling as it is.

Will Sillin will be an artist in residence at Zion National Park from Oct. 19 through Nov. 16. He will head west a little early to get his Southwest Plein Air game up to speed before the residency. Will is hoping that Buddy Taft and Jim Laliberty will be able join him in the southwest sometime before the residency begins.

Concluding: Here is wishing everyone a happy and healthy new year and new decade.

Gerry Frank |

CLASS OF 1977 | 2019 | ISSUE 3

The end of an all-too brief summer has folks writing in with all sorts of updates.

Wendy Brown Giardina graced the U.S. East Coast this past fall for a visit with Boston-area family as well as friends, me included. Wendy became a grandmother to Arthur, earlier this year, who lives with his parents in Zurich.

I’ve written previously about Iddy Olson finding love in her 60s: indeed, she and partner Tom were married this fall in Chicago. It couldn’t happen to two nicer people. Iddy is thoroughly enjoying her 1-year-old granddaughter.

Ted Stevens wrote about a benefit this past May in Rhode Island: “One of the finest individuals, Nancy Scanlon Poon, a bona fide DKE, has been diagnosed with ALS. Nancy is biological sister to Robert “Bobby” Scanlon and wife (for 41 years) of Alan “Pooner” Poon ’76. Nancy is showing incredible courage under the difficult circumstances.” We all wish Nancy and her family the very best.

Mark Slitt’s travels have taken him to Germany and Poland. The program included five days at Auschwitz, where the group engaged in preservation projects, such as cleaning objects in the museum and tending the grounds of the site. This was not a typical vacation by any means, but a very meaningful one for Mark, to be sure.

David Loder sends his best regards to all; he described getting to relive the Wes experience, as his brother’s son, Aaron ’22, entering his sophomore year, is thoroughly enjoying the college experience.

John Fink has a new job as executive director of education and workforce development at the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii. He, along with wife Shari, got to babysit their two grandsons in Oregon for some time during a four-month sabbatical. John found it “a lot different handling a 4-year-old and a 1-year-old at age 63 than it was back at age 33.”

Jerry Stouck is retiring from law this year after 39 years. He is working on a book, but other than that, will be enjoying lots of golf and splitting time between D.C. and Park City, Utah. Oldest daughter Danielle got married in September. Jerry was on campus to partake in the opening of the new Chabad house at Wesleyan, which he supported.

Dr. Doug Hauschild was able to play (as an actor) a doctor: Dr. Norquist in the smash hit Bright Star at the Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre.

Cindee Howard wrote from England that she and her partner, Jon, were at a reunion in England, getting together with people she was with on a program in Israel 40 years ago. She is still working full-time as a proofreader and copyeditor for Marriott International.

Jim Melloan produced the New York Comedy Music Festival this past spring. Jim met up with Jack Freudenheim ’79, Tom Kovar ’76, Win Lockwood ’78, Ann Beutler Millerick ’77, and a bunch of other alumni to play in a Super-Wes band at Eclectic at Reunion.

Jane Eisner began a new job this summer as director of academic affairs at the Columbia School of Journalism. She finds it gratifying to know that even at our stage of life, we can embrace a new challenge!

I always get a kick out of reporting when my professional adult life intersects with my Wesleyan life. Such is the case with a commission this year to design a new chapel for Temple Beth Avodah, in Newton, Mass., in honor of their Rabbi, Keith Stern. Designing a spiritual space is one of the high points to any architect’s career. What has made this project so special is that the entire Temple community has been engaged, generous with their time, extremely warm, and appreciative. In other words, they reflect Keith’s style exactly.

Finally, it is with great sadness that I write of the passing of two of our classmates: Laura McLane Fox and Fred Van Brunt. Laura was a biology major at Wesleyan, a well-respected nursing administrator and gerontologist. She is survived by her two daughters. Fred was a resident of Middletown after having spent several years in Hollywood as prop master for several studios. Fred is survived by many family members in the Middletown area. Our thoughts and prayers go out to their friends and family and classmates who were counted among their friends.

I hope everyone keeps well. Drop a line when you have a chance. The next set of notes are likely due at the end of the year.

Gerry Frank |

CLASS OF 1977 | 2019 | ISSUE 2

Thanks to all who wrote in regarding what is happening in their lives. It is great to read that so many folks are gathering with fellow classmates. Due to the quantity of updates, some will appear in our next issue.

Don Citak attended a mini class reunion in Manhattan accompanied by Don Lowery, Jeff Shames, Tom Roberts, Vanessa Burgess, and Dave Thomas. Everyone enjoyed drinks and dinner, catching up with one another. Don’s stories of attending Robert Kraft’s Seders and pictures of himself with Bon Jovi were among the highlights, as were Tom’s stories about his visits to college campuses, and Jeff’s stories about bouncing back and forth between Boston and New York to juggle his many commitments. Don C. just grinned as he showed pictures of his two grandchildren. There is nothing better!

Don Spencer wrote of undergoing treatment for appendiceal cancer for the past 10 months. First chemo, then major surgeries. It was a serious ordeal, but he is hopefully through the worst of it. Don wants to extend major thanks to the many family and friends, including Wes alumni, who supported him. Our thoughts and prayers are with you in your recovery.

John Fink may be onto a new job in Hawaii. His current e-mail is:

First-time contributor Gary Altman’s daughter, Jill, was married in December in Layfette, La., to her wife, Kate. Son Matthew and his wife had their first child, his first grandchild, Sara Annie. His law firm, Altman & Associates, continues to grow with no plans on slowing down. Gary was honored at a gala for Hope Connections for Cancer, a local charity that provides free cancer support groups to patients and families. Gary and wife Liz have been married for 15 years and live in an historic Potomac, Md., house, where they make gourmet pizza in a wood-burning pizza oven.

Jane Goldenring has been busy traveling in many directions to Charlotte to see Janet Malkemes, who is doing great, then heading to Wesleyan to teach a two-day class for the graduating film students, including a visit with Kate Seeger, then to NYC, where she caught up with Jane Eisner. Laraine Balk Hope came to meet Jane from D.C. The two went to see the new production of Oklahoma and hung out at the Met for good measure.

Jeff Gray celebrated his 40th wedding anniversary on Cape Cod with a crowd, including the Honorable Judge Bob Nastri and wife Kathleen, Dave Thomas with companion Gretchen Dowling, Tim O’Brien ’81 and wife Linda, Gary Breitbord ’79 and wife Colleen, and Mr. Kenneth J. Langley, Esq., who retired at the end of January of this year after many years of service as an attorney for the state of Massachusetts. Speaking of retirement, Jeff hung it up last June. Thirty-nine years in mortgage banking was apparently enough.

Felice Burstein and John Roxby have both retired and sold their house in Pennsylvania. They are planning to move to Concord, N.H., to be closer to kids and grandkids. The new home won’t be ready for a year, so they are taking advantage of a lack of home ownership to live “untethered.”

Jonathan Gertler’s family is doing great. His 15-month-old granddaughter, Jhie Hong Gertler, is a delight and his adult children are all thriving.

Linda Palmer retired from the law and now works at the Animal Rescue League of Boston. Her husband is an environmental advocate; her children live nearby in the Boston area.

Lisa Reitano was moving her mom and came across this gem from her dad, who was a CPA and kept track of every penny. He totaled up what Lisa’s Wesleyan education cost for all four years. The grand total of tuition, room and board, books, and phone calls was $21,494.34. As anyone who still has a kid in college knows, it is unbelievable.

Shalom Staub wrote that after 38 years in Harrisburg, Pa., it was time for a change. He has moved with his wife to Los Angeles, taking a new job as director of UCLA’s Center for Community Learning. He’s loving it! Still building new social networks though, so he’d love to connect to LA-based Wesleyan alumni.

Peter Guenther noted that there was recently a reception on campus for his old lacrosse coach, Terry Jackson. It was held at President Michael Roth’s [’78] home and hosted by Athletic Director Mike Whalen ’83 and Bill Belichick ’75. Among the many old lacrosse players who came out were some former teammates: Andy Darpino, Pat McQullan ’75, Mike Sanfilippo ’75, Carl Taylor ’78, Charlie Cocores ’74, Pete McArdle ’76, and Mark Fredland ’74.

Nice pithy note from Mary Jo Wade: “Downsizing. Less work (in theory). Grandchildren. Life is good for her and Jack (Gray).”

Here is hoping that life is good to you all!

Gerry Frank |

CLASS OF 1977 | 2019 | ISSUE 1

Winter finally reared its head in the Northeast with some snow and bone-chilling temperatures this January. So, taking refuge in front of a crackling fire, I have many New Year’s greetings from fellow classmates.

Andy Adesman sent word about his recently published book, Grandfamily Guidebook (Hazelden Publishing), which should be well received by the many recent grandparents in our class. Andy, along with Steve Gold and Rick Dennett, started the New Year with a vacation with wives on Longboat Key, Fla. Steve McNutt and his wife joined in for a wonderful dinner.

Jason Baron’s The Chelly Foundation, the charity he founded in Cambodia, hosted a creative writing workshop sponsored by Writing Through—the organization started by Sue Rappaport Guiney. Jason further reports that Kathy Asquith Franklin volunteers as a board member of The Chelly Foundation: being extraordinarily generous with her time and support. More information on these two charities can be found at and

Buzz Cohen was delighted to return to campus to speak to the stage management class. Buzz is heading into rehearsal for Suzan-Lori Parks’ White Noise for the Public Theater.

Iddy Olson is a granny! Rowan Grace Jennings was born to her son, Des, and his wife in Jackson Hole. She is very thankful for FaceTime. John Fink is taking time off after 34 years of managing KFVE-TV in Honolulu until he writes his next chapter. Jane Goldenring is coming east in May for a family graduation and then plans to teach a couple days at Wesleyan.

With the New Year, Janet Malkemes will be looking for a new job, preferably within the North Carolina state system so that she can reach the magic 10 years needed to qualify for a full retirement and health care. Although not quite ready for retirement, she is enjoying having more available free time than she has had over the past 38 years.

Jerry Stouck is near the end of a long legal career in D.C., spending more and more time in Park City, Utah, both winter and summer. Oldest daughter Dani just got engaged and lives in Harlem, son David ’15 is in New York working at Warner Music, and youngest Rachel is finishing an MSW program in Boston. Jerry is in touch with Micha Balf and may see Teddy Klaus in D.C.

Jim Melloan met up in the East Village with Jim Dowling and David Van Biema ’80. He recently acquired a manager for acting gigs. Any showbiz folks interested in hiring him should contact Dream Maker Talent Management of Glen Head, N.Y. Jim expressed great optimism for 2019.

Joan Goldfeder had a fine and unexpected breakfast with Doug Green in September. She also scored a dinner with Peter Bickford on one of his many business trips. Joan and Penley Toffolon Kidd do a lot of commiserating and complaining about the current administration via text: “someday soon, the phones will explode (or they will).” Son Eli is in Spain for his semester abroad from Bucknell University, which is all Joan needs to plan a trip there for early spring. Joan is still doing marketing consulting, mostly for nonprofits.

David Loder writes, “Hard to believe that my son, Marek ’11, graduated from Wes eight years ago . . . and I won’t even do the math for our class but am thrilled to have my brother Tom [’80]’s son and my nephew, Aaron ’22, attending Wesleyan as a freshman this year . . . keeps all the memories flowing as we count our many blessings particularly at this time of year.”

In the New Year, Mark Slitt was headed on safari to South Africa: photos only, no gun shooting. Mike Coffey has been beating a track to SoCal since daughter Lanie started grad school at Cal State Long Beach: nine trips out since summer. Lanie got her master’s in nutrition in May, finished up the thesis, and started her first career job working for Heluna Health at their Women, Infant, and Children (WIC) clinics last month.

Vicky Dworkin retired from her position as children’s librarian at the Hawaii State Library, and moved to Center Sandwich, N.H., along with husband John Wendell. She is a part-time freelance storyteller, involved in various children’s literature activities, and enjoying life near Squam Lake.

Vanessa Burgess and Betsy Hecker sent along good wishes for the New Year to us all. Will Altman wrote from Brazil that his new book, Ascent to the Good: The Reading Order of Plato’s Dialogues From Symposium to Republic, has been published by Rowman and Littlefield.

All in all, it sounds like a fine start to 2019.

Gerry Frank |

CLASS OF 1977 | 2018 | ISSUE 3

As the warm summer temperatures have been disappearing along with the abundance of daylight, we have some greetings from classmates to share here. Earl Phillips has received the prestigious designation as Lawyer of the Year for 2019. Earl’s practice has had a strong focus on environmental, energy and safety/health considerations. Heartiest congratulations go to you, distinguished Counselor.

Peg Batchelder writes that after being laid off from Bristol-Myers Squibb last May, it seemed fated for her to take an early retirement. Peg’s partner, May Coryell, retired that June, and they spent the summer packing for the big move to their condo on Maui. As one might imagine, retirement has been wonderful; they can’t imagine being happier anywhere else!

Paul Meisel’s oldest son, Peter, and his wife, Liz, had a boy named Riley on July 14. On the professional front, Paul has some children’s books coming out: Anna and Samia, a true story about a woman named Anna Merz who saved rhinos in Kenya; My Happy Year by E. Bluebird, a nonfiction diary of an Eastern bluebird; and See Me Play, a beginning reader. Paul’s I See A Cat, won a 2018 Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor Award from the ALA.

A touching note from Jane Eisner: “Mark Berger ’76 and I welcomed Sadie Avital, our second grandchild, in August. Sadie and her big brother, Colin, live in Brooklyn, and we see them as often as humanly possible. She is named for my mother, Sadie, and I’ve learned that having your daughter (Rachel Berger ’06) give birth to a daughter and name her for your mother is truly one of the great joys in life.”

Lisa Brummel has been on tour visiting Switzerland and Germany on route to Israel. Lisa met up with Wendy Brown Giardina. I made sure there was up-to-date contact information for Rachel Helfer and Micah Balf.

Jane Goldenring has a Christmas movie, A Majestic Christmas, coming out this holiday season. Jane spent a lot of time in Montréal creating a winter wonderland in 90-degree weather. She has safely returned back to southern California to teach a graduate producing course at USC.

In Maine, Jay Kilbourn recently retired and is spending time as a citizen lobbyist with Citizens Climate Lobby, focusing on getting bipartisan support for the Carbon Fee and Dividend. This is a strategy to dramatically reduce carbon pollution and climate change, while growing the economy! Exciting to have a favorable solution to a critical global problem that enjoys support from Rs and Ds in this divided world. Following in his father’s footsteps, Doug Hauschild felt compelled to get involved again as an Eagle to teach merit badges. He is now signed up to teach eight merit badges (including the three citizenships) and has enjoyed the honor of sitting on or chairing 25 Eagle boards of review.

Catherine Compton Swanson is celebrating 25 years of marriage to Gary Jon Swanson. Catherine is a retired museum archivist. Along with their Brittany spaniel, Tucker, they enjoy their lake house at Otsego Lake in Northern Michigan and a cabin on Rangeley Lake in Maine. Catherine and Gary live in Lexington, Mass., and enjoy the symphony and the great town library. Yikes, we are neighbors!

Finally, one surprise in my life has been that my services as a wedding officiant have been much in demand. I just completed wedding number five in the Boston area this summer. In order to comply with California requirements, I became an ordained minister through the Universal Life Church which has garnered some prestige and/or legitimacy, along with a coveted clergy parking pass.

As these notes will be read at the end of 2018, I would like to wish all a very happy and healthy holiday season and new year.

Gerry Frank |