Please write to your class secretary!
Avery Esdaile | firstname.lastname@example.org
Please write to your class secretary!
Avery Esdaile | email@example.com
Class of 2000, great to see many of you at the 15th Reunion in May, and we have officially began the journey towards our 20th Reunion! Now on to the news, notes and updates…
Scott Mayerowitz and his wife, Sheri, are excited to announce the arrival of their daughter Leah Paige Mayerowitz. That’s why the family wasn’t able to attend our 15th Reunion but they look forward to seeing everybody for our 20th.
Jason Robinson and his fiancée, Cassandra Flemming, are proud to present Bryce Robinson, born June 7, 2014. Mom and Dad have known each other for 20 years and are happy and blessed to be a family.
Luke Davenport writes “I recently left my job at IBM to start an education consultancy called District Public that helps New York City school leaders use their data more effectively. It’s an exciting change and very rewarding so far.”
Andrea McKnight says “I continue to practice law in southeastern Massachusetts. I’m pleased to announce that for the third consecutive year I was recognized with the Massachusetts Super Lawyer Rising Star award. My practice consists of domestic relations matters and civil litigation—pretty much anything that keeps me in a courtroom!”
Many people in our class continue to welcome new babies into their families. Chinelo Dike-Minor and her husband, Randall Minor, welcomed a new baby boy, Obi Minor, in Nov. 2014. Everyone is thrilled, including his big brother!
Demian Szyld and Pia Chatterjee welcomed their daughter Lila on Dec. 24th, 2014. “We are enjoying her smiles and our time together in Brooklyn, N.Y.”
Caroline Cho Reed writes, “We welcomed our third child, a son, in Sept, 2014. His two older sisters are thrilled to have a real live “baby doll” in the house! I’m happily managing and maintaining a busy household schedule but finding some time to do some pro bono communications work for an exercise franchise.”
Melanie Kessler and her husband live in Bristol, Vt., with their two wonderful sons, Ezra (2) and Judah (6 months). She writes, “We manage a small school/community farm and I provide Jewish spiritual education and community programming for a synagogue in Burlington along with organizing community harvest festivals. My husband creates functional metal sculpture and takes care of horses’ feet out of the blacksmithing shop in our backyard. What wonderful joy we have bringing ritual, craft, and celebrations to our home and extended community. Visitors welcome!”
Also, in Vermont, Sadie Danforth Brightman, along with the help of husband Nick Brightman has had an exciting year fulfilling a dream to start a music school. Middlebury Community Music Center is an up and running nonprofit with 20 faculty members and more than 100 students. The vision has long been to create a place for collaboration and diverse music classes for all ages. One of the biggest thrills is having both daughters, now 6 and 4, attending as music students!
Gian-Murray Gianino writes that he and his wife, Maggie Thom, are absolutely enjoying the joys and follies of raising their son, Sebastian Thom Gianino, in Brooklyn. Maggie continues to dance, most recently at BAM with Jodi Melnick, as well as teach at Plymouth Church School in Brooklyn Heights. GM continues to teach and perform all over the map with his theater company, SITI Company, most recently at the Getty Villa in LA.
Ali Haider is an interventional cardiologist in western Massachusetts in private practice with Hampden County cardiovascular associates. He is affiliated with Baystate Medical Center and is an assistant professor of medicine at the Tufts University School of Medicine. He is a new member of the heart valve team and performs coronary, structural, and vascular interventions.
Shawn Green is working on his third degree, this time in engineering, at Berkshire Community College.
Josh Lerner published two books last year—Making Democracy Fun: How Game Design Can Empower Citizens and Transform Politics; and Everyone Counts: Could Participatory Budgeting Change Democracy? He lives in Brooklyn, where he directs a nonprofit, the Participatory Budgeting Project, and plays Duplo with his son Miro.
Paul Josephs is still working as a musician and educator with Metrosonics Concepts in Brooklyn, NY. He has a new website: pauljosephs.com, as well as metrosonicsconcepts.com.
Ian Moulton writes, “On July 5, 2014, I married Jillian Johnson in my parents’ backyard in Elkhart Lake, Wisc. Lots of friends and family were in attendance, including my brother Sam Moulton ’98. After the ceremony Jillian and I got into an amphibious car and drove into the lake while our guests followed in a pair of pontoon boats. It was a lot of fun. Jillian is from Klamath Falls, Ore. She is director of HR at the online video company JW Player. I work at TouchTunes as a product manager of digital jukeboxes. We live in the Prospect Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn.”
I (Hilda) continue to live in Brunswick, Maine, where I work as a school psychologist in the elementary school down the road. My husband, Peter Wiley, is working at Bowdoin College in data warehousing and analytics. We just had our third child in December, Naomi Joy, and she has been warmly welcomed by big sister Simone (7) and brother Ian (5). I will be stepping down from doing class notes, so if anyone wants to take over for me, please send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Avery is great to work with!
Hilda Ives Wiley and Avery Esdaile
In his first class note ever, Dave Jenkins writes, “After 10 years as a firefighter/EMT and local firefighters union leader, I left the Santa Fe, N.M., Fire Department in order to start my first year at the University of New Mexico School of Law.”
Joe Griffin and his wife, Sandra, welcomed their third child into the world. Reese Madeline was born on August 19th and her two older brothers, Kian (4) and Bode (almost 2), are very excited with the arrival of their new little sister. The Griffin’s moved to Connecticut and now reside in Ridgefield. Evans Anyanwu got married and became a partner at the law firm of Roth D’Aquanni, LLC in Springfield. Evans also joined the Board of Link Community Charter School in Newark where the chairman of the board is Andrew Lacey ’89.
Laura Alward writes “My husband, Brian Alward, and I just had a fabulous (we’re not biased or anything!) baby girl on July 19. Petra Eloise Alward is her name, and we have already started executing our plan to have her on skis before she can walk and climbing before she can use the toilet. We’re utterly whupped and think she’s divine!” Scott Mayerowitz married Sheri Askinazi (Binghamton ’99) on June 8, 2014. Scott is working as an airlines and travel reporter for The Associated Press; Sheri heads the global alumni program at the law firm of Shearman & Sterling LLP. The couple live on the upper west side of Manhattan.
On June 7, 2014, Matt Freeman married Bethany Caruso ’03 at a farm outside of Atlanta, Ga. The couple never met at Wesleyan, but have many friends in common and even lived in the same room in Earth House three years apart. “We danced, swam, drank bourbon lemonade, and ate fried chicken with a number of fellow WesTech grads.”
Matt Lenard completed a two-year Strategic Data Project Fellowship with the Wake County Public School System and was just named the district’s director of data strategy and analytics. Matt will be leading efforts to leverage education data to help improve outcomes across the district. Also, Matt and his wife, Melody Moezzi ’01 , celebrated the birth of the paperback edition of her memoir, Haldol and Hyacinths: A Bipolar Life.
Timothy Howard writes, “I’m living in Brooklyn, married to an accordion player, and working as a reporter at WNYC’s Radiolab. I’d love to hear from any former classmates who have ideas for radio stories. I’m also still/always/forever releasing music under the name Soltero (soltero.bandcamp.com). Any interested upright bass players out there?”
Andrea McKnight was awarded and named a 2014 rising star super lawyer of Massachusetts, and named to Boston magazine’s top female lawyers 2014. She has settled down in Cape Cod, where she is raising her son. Andrea writes “I can’t believe our 15-year Reunion is coming up in May! Seems like yesterday!” Elizabeth (Doctors) Alleva moved over the summer to a new home in Lynbrook, Long Island, with her husband Neill and her dog Kylie. She continues to teach dance, choreograph, and serve on advisory boards for NYC’s Department of Education. Leah Grabelsky has moved from Boston to Brooklyn to work with the Learning Partners Program—Chancellor Farina’s exciting new initiative to facilitate ongoing collaboration and learning throughout NYC public schools—and return to her New York roots. She’s thrilled to be working with Maris Yanow ’04 and living closer to her sister Jenny Grabelsky ’06, cousins Sarah Leitson ’11 and Andrew Gladstone ’11, and dear friend Diana Glanternik ’99.
If anyone is interested in joining the class notes team, please contact us. We are looking for a volunteer for the spring of 2015.
Hilda Ives Wiley and Avery Esdaile
We’ve got some more babies joining our class! Karen Ferreira Amis and Greg Amis welcomed their future Wesleyan alumnus, Leonard “Leo” Amis, into the world on Jan. 3rd of this year.
Melissa Stevens and Rob Debbane had a son, Max Alexander Debbane, born Feb. 16th.
Elisabeth Watson (Schreiber) wrote: “My husband, Simon, and I welcomed our daughter, Maeve, into the world on the 18th of March, born at home and under water in Falmouth, England! Big brother Aidan loves his new little sister. I’ll be back teaching fitness classes on the beach to mums and little ones in a few weeks, once the dust settles.”
Anne Obelnicki and her husband, Chris, had a baby boy, named Alden, on November 14th.
Rhiannon Luyster writes, “My husband and I have been settled in Cambridge, Mass., for seven years now and love our quiet neighborhood near Harvard Square. I am teaching at Emerson College in the communications sciences and disorders department (with fellow Wes alum Joanne Lasker ’84) and continue to do autism research at Boston Children’s Hospital. This past September we welcomed our son, Hugh Luyster Polley. We can’t imagine a more charming little person to have in our family!”
Michelle Wimberly-Speach gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Isabel in October 2013. Michelle and her husband, Kheimon Speach, have two other children, Sanaa (age 10) and Kheimon Junior (age 7). Michelle is also in the process of obtaining her master’s degree in human resources and professional studies at Pennsylvania State University.
Ali Haider is working as an interventional cardiologist for a private practice in Western Massachusetts in the greater Springfield area.
Shawn Green now works as a physics tutor at the Berkshire School and has adopted a puppy.
In 2005 John Mailer co-wrote the book The Big Empty with his father, Norman Mailer. This book is the source of material for Two Mailers, a new play that brings this father-son dialogue to life on the stage. Actor Paul Sorvino of Goodfellas fame plays Norman, and Jordan Belfi of Entourage plays John Mailer. For more information, see: argonautnews.com/the-big-empty-comes-full-circle-in-two-mailers/.
Jordan Lloyd Bookey started her career as a teacher, then pursued an MBA at Wharton, and remained in education, leading Google’s K-12 team for several years. About a year ago, she left to start her current company, Zoobean, with her husband, Felix. At Zoobean, they curate apps and books, and then personalize them for each child (like Pandora for children’s apps and books). They were featured on Shark Tank on April 18.
Hilda Ives Wiley andAvery Esdaile
Andrea McKnight received the honor of being named a 2013 Massachusetts Rising Star by the Super Lawyers Committee. She writes, “It is exciting news and I am thrilled! I recently moved to Cape Cod to take my shot at running my own law practice. I have affiliated myself with a lawyer who has 30-plus years of experience, so fingers crossed!” Lauryn Siegel is still doing a million things in Brooklyn, including video, advertising, and multi-platform art projects whenever time allows. She also says, “I am thrilled to announce that my family added yet another Wes alum when my brother Ross Siegel married Sonya Penn ’01! The wedding, held in Napa Calif., included a lot of alums from a range of years, including my cousins Leslie Title Fine ’94, Ed Fine ’95, Josh Shimkin ’99, Danielle Lazier ’99, Courtney Orange ’01, Sarah Dalsimer ’01, and Kira Akerman ’10!”
John Buffalo Mailer sent the following update: “These days I am serializing a tattoo memoir in the next 10 issues of Inked Magazine, am acting in a Matthew Barney movie called River Of Fundament that comes out in February, and am working on a graphic novel adaptation of my movie Hello Herman (which just came out on DVD and stars Norman Reedus of The Walking Dead).”
Joseph Vidich founded Kin & Company, an innovative architecture practice working in Brooklyn, specializing in the design and fabrication of custom products, furniture, and architectural interiors. Joseph also teaches architectural studio and technology courses at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation and at the College of Technology at the City University of New York. He lives and works in Brooklyn.
Jenny Saranow Schultz, her husband David, and their 15-month-old daughter are now out on the West Coast, enjoying life in the Glen Park neighborhood of San Francisco. After leaving journalism for the corporate world two years ago, Jenny is now back to writing in her spare time, blogging daily hints to help make parenting easier and cheaper at HintMama.com (and she can also be found at @HintMama on Twitter and at Facebook.com/HintMama).
Erica Johnson Strauss writes: “After working for 12 years at Madison High School in San Diego, I got the opportunity on Oct. 1, 2013, to move to Muirlands Middle School in La Jolla, where I am teaching 7th grade English. I am very happy and excited about the change! My oldest son, Carter, will start kindergarten in the fall of 2014 and will now attend school in La Jolla, because I work there. Reed, my youngest son who is now 2.5, will follow him in a few years. Matt and I are very excited about this professional change; it came at the right time!”
Jonathan Schwartz writes “Onna Solomon (’01, University of Michigan) and I have been having a wonderful time with our son, Lev, who turned one in late November. Also, in July, I became the head of the middle school at Greenhills School in Ann Arbor, Mich. Before moving into this post, I taught English at Greenhills; now I still teach one section of 8th grade English each day, and the rest of the time, I undertake the big job of overseeing this truly awesome middle school.”
Ben Baumer is releasing a book, The Sabermetric Revolution: Assessing the Growth of Analytics in Baseball, co-authored by Andrew Zimbalist (P’02) in February:
Elizabeth Darlington sent the following “Paul Edlefsen and I are living in lovely Seattle in the very house where Paul grew up. Our daughter, Eleanor, is 4 and we just welcomed our son, Arthur O’Neill, two months ago! Paul is doing HIV vaccine work as a biostatistician and I am working at an Episcopal church that is being transformed into a community arts space. We love seeing Wes friends when we can here in the northwest corner of the country, and we are looking forward to the next Wes reunion in Middletown!”
Christian Frattasio writes: “Greetings from Hanover, Mass. My wife, Catherine, and I welcomed our third child, Grace Ann, on Sept. 10th. Grace joins 5-year-old big brother Samuel, and 3-year-old sister Audrey. Mommy and tiny Grace are doing wonderfully!”
Hilda Ives Wiley and Avery Esdaile