Alumni Mailbag: A Clickable Top 10 Mashup

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Sometimes it’s hard to know what to write about Davidson alumni. More precisely, it’s hard to know what not to write. Our folders bulge with story ideas from myriad and sundry sources, only a fraction of which stories anyone could hope to dig into—to write or, for that matter, to read. Thank goodness for class notes and Alenda Links. Even Facebook, if we must.

These things being said, two approaches seem in order for alumni coverage in this blog: Dig deep occasionally, and also occasionally offer up a representative and clickable sampler briefing of alumni doings large and small, professional and personal, big-picture and day-to-day.

In today’s experiment, we’ll skim the 10 most recent alumni-related e-mails off the top of the ol’ inbox, without regard to content. All are G-rated—okay, maybe PG-13 in a case or two. Some came directly to me, some were passed along through various campus channels, or channels of the World Wide Web. Here goes:

• Jim Johnson ’54 and George Crone ’54 strike the same pose, 55 years apart:

• Mary Laura Moretz Philpott ’96 dialed in to the Alumni Office with thanks for help setting up an evening of Wildcat alumnus/Golden State Warriors basketball on March 5 in Atlanta with her son Cameron, 7, future Class of ’25, who chose game tickets to see Steph Curry play over a traditional birthday party.

• Jessica Cooley ’05, assistant curator of the art gallery at Belk Visual Art Center, was interviewed along with Associate Professor of English Ann Fox about the recent “Re/Formations” and “Staring“ exhibits on campus, for a podcast in the Art/See issue of Bitch magazine, a nationally-recognized feminist magazine that critiques media culture.

• Tim Johnston ’83, who just launched the Web site Short Story America, rang up to let fellow writerly types on campus know about a recent interview in Lowcountry Weekly.

• President Emeritus John Kuykendall ’59 forwarded a “Dear John” letter of a different sort from Princeton, which noted that Melinda Baldwin ’04 is one of four Porter Ogden Jacobus Fellows, in the history of science, at Princeton this year. The letter, on “The Graduate School” stationery, also encouraged a donation—which encouragement Dr. Kuykendall annotated thus: “Don’t give ’em any money. Davidson Trust needs all we can spare!”

• Ann Clark [’80], Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools’ chief academic officer, has been chosen for a 10-month executive training program designed to prepare her to be an urban superintendent,” reported an article in the Charlotte Observer forwarded by several sources.

• James Barrat ’83 has a new adventure documentary, Extreme Cave Diving, which will air this Tues., Feb. 9 at 8 p.m. on PBS, and after that on the PBS Web site. There’s also an essay, James reports: “See the preview and an essay by me—click the pic of the smiling fool.”

• Ivon Rohrer ’64, we feel your pain. No, really, we do. In the recent Business Week article, Stanford Tops Harvard as College Donations Fall Most Since ’69, Ivon lamented his reduced contribution to alma mater this year. But Ivon found a phrasing befitting a true Davidson gentleman: The recession, he said, “precluded me from giving as much in 2009 as I will give in the future.”

CPT Eric Rosenbach ’95 is executive director of research at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School, reports Charles A. Dana Professor of Political Science Lou Ortmayer. Yes, that’s the shop directed by Graham Allison ’64, Lou confirms.

• Suzie Eckl ’09, Davidson Fellow in the Annual Fund, reports on a classmate: “Whiz kid Marshall Worsham ’09 maintains a blog through the online Glimpse Magazine (connected to National Geographic) and regularly reports on his student experience at Oxford. Older posts also available. Click on Marshall’s face to get the whole listing.”

Don’t you just love clicking on a classmate’s face?

For the next alumni news mashup, we’ll have to construct a new conceit, in fairness, to start getting at some of the stuff in the middle of the inbox, and the bottom, and the stack of hard copy stuff beside my desk…. Meantime, leave your own comments here, and submit your own notes to class secretaries or through Alenda Links. To borrow a classic signoff line from Davidson Journal class secretary Sue McAvoy ’77: “So that’s the news from far and wide. All the best to you.…and I love you, brothers and sisters.”

  1. Meg
    Meg02-09-2010

    John, Sue will attest to this, as can most members of the Class of 1977: “I love you, brother [or sister]” was the reliable sign-off of our classmate Chip Crawford, now gone but ever in our hearts. After Chip’s death, Sue brought it alive in our class notes as a sweet reminder of connection. All e-mails and telephone conversations among our class members end with this farewell.It warms my heart to see you share it more broadly; it is the true Davidson stuff.

  2. John Syme
    John Syme02-10-2010

    Meg, A sweet note to fulfill the meaning of a graceful phrase, thanks for sharing with us!

  3. James
    James02-16-2010

    I like what you have done. Very informative. Keep it up!

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