From the Homestead Williston Northampton School Alumni Newsletter

Greetings from campus!

Is there anywhere more beautiful than New England in the fall? We are enjoying the mild temperatures and colorful foliage as the first part of the school year draws to a close. Students will depart campus in four weeks to finish their post-Thanksgiving classes from home, and we are looking forward to welcoming them back to campus in January.

In the meantime, there is much to look forward to in the remaining weeks: theater students have filmed their performance of Antigone, dancers have put together performances in spaces in and out of the studio, and choral members are recording their outdoor concerts. We are looking forward to bringing you a November filled with special virtual performances!

Read on to see what else is happening in the next few weeks, including a chance to join the Music Department for a winter series of performances and talks with outstanding professionals in a variety of musical styles (read more in Notes from Campus, below). Next Tuesday, Trustee Mijanou Spurdle '86, a Morgan Stanley Financial Advisor offers a webinar on financial literacy for women from early to mid-career. And don't miss your chance to enter our Halloween contests. Our student judges are ready and eager to pick the winners among your pets and pumpkins (see more below). Finally, tune in as wine expert Gordon Sullivan '69 helps you to choose the best wines for your Thanksgiving dinner. Find details and RSVP links below or on our alumni events website.

We hope you are staying well and look forward to seeing you at a (virtual) event soon!

Jill Stern, Director of Alumni Engagement

Notes from campus...

During the Academic Awards ceremony held on October 6, Dean of Faculty, Peter Valine, presented three faculty members with two chairs and an instructorship. Congratulations to these dedicated teachers! Grubbs Faculty Chair: Jeff Ketcham, Science Faculty. The Grubbs Faculty Chair was established in 1999 by trustees and friends of the school in honor of Denny Grubbs in his final year as Headmaster. It is awarded to a faculty member whose life has been Williston Northampton and teaching. The Mesics lnstructorship: Matt Porter, Science Faculty. The Mesics lnstructorship was established in 2001 by Sandra B. and Joseph C. Mesics. Sandra was a member of the Northampton School for Girls class of 1955. This instructorship recognizes a young faculty member’s initiatives in and out of the classroom. Granniss Chair: Katie Loomis, Language Faculty. The Granniss Faculty Chair was established in 1999 by Eugenie Granniss, widow of Charles Gardiner Granniss who was a member of the Williston class of 1929. It is awarded to a faculty member who personifies the pure joy of sharing the process of learning.

Join us to celebrate the arts! Tuesday evenings at 7 p.m. EST. Colin Mann, Director of Williston Northampton School Choirs is pleased to partner with the office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to present a series of guest speakers this year! Each gathering will include a live or pre-recorded performance as well as a Q&A session. Mark your calendars and plan to tune in! Starting next Tuesday: Nov. 17,  Nia Drummond (NYC Jazz Singer; American Vocal Jazz) / Dec. 8, Rayvon Moore (Conductor; Friends University Choirs, Wichita Chamber Chorale) / Jan. 26, Pierce Freelon '02 and daughter Stella Freelon (Politician, Musician; Hip-Hop and Children's Music) / Feb. 9, Brianna Robinson (Opera Singer; Boston Lyric Opera, African American Spirituals). Join via Zoom using this link.

Stay current with news from campus and beyond with the latest stories from the current edition of The Willistonian online.

Spotlight on: Ken Mankoff '96

As an eyewitness to an unfolding global catastrophe, Ken Mankoff ’96 studies the impact of climate change on polar regions. Click here to read more, and to find out what it's like to spend months at a time in some of the harshest conditions on Earth.

Spotlight on: Michael Nozik '72

"It’s a process of always trying to find the fresh, inventive way to keep going forward."

Over his three-decade career as a film producer, Michael Nozik '72 has worked with Hollywood luminaries such as Robert Redford and Martin Scorcese and been the driving force behind more than two dozen movies, winning particular acclaim for Syriana, The Motorcycle Diaries, and Quiz Show, which was nominated for the Best Picture Oscar in 1994. And yet, despite these achievements, the Holyoke, Massachusetts, native says the challenges of his career continue to test his confidence. Read more about what keeps him in the game.

Spotlight on: Destiny Nwafor '17

From co-founding the Black Wings initiative that supports Black women in tech, to mentoring computer science students in Ghana, Cornell University senior Destiny Nwafor has been making positive changes in her industry. Find out what's next as she continues to make change in the tech landscape.

Alumni Events

From pets in costumes to catching up with friends and from planning for financial independence to choosing the right wine for Thanksgiving, we've got plenty to do this fall!

Halloween Contest: Best Pet Costume; Best Pumpkin Carving. Send us your best photos and student judges will select our winners! Class Zoom calls continue (contact Tammy Neils-Walker at tneilswalker@williston.com if you would like to schedule one for your class.) Financial Advisor and Trustee Mijanou Spurdle '86 presents a webinar on financial literacy for women. Register for any or all on our Alumni Events page.

We've got WINNERS! Results are in from our popular Pints & Pancakes annual 5K. See all the fun and the winning photos in our Flickr gallery. Fastest Finishing Time: Tracy Stewart Poulin ’87, P’13, ’15, ’19 (5k run, Easthampton, MA: 24:05) / Farthest Away 5K: Athena Yeung ’13 (5K run, Hong Kong) / Most Williston Northampton Spirit: Peter Stasz ’65 (5K run, Springfield, MA: 37:57) / Best 5K Route Scenery: Jack Howell P’24 (5K hike, Hong Kong) / Best Photo: Nick Hill ’17 and DJ Poulin ’19 (5K run, Middlebury, VT)

Check out our regularly updated alumni events page, watch your emails, and tell your friends. We'll see you soon!

A powerful network just for alumni of Williston Northampton.

Search to find alumni who share your professional and personal interests, then connect at the click of a button. Members of the community are ready and willing to offer advice and perspective no matter where you are in your career journey. It takes less than 5 minutes to answer a few questions about your past Williston Northampton interests and your career to complete your profile.

With over 900 members and growing, The Williston Alumni and Alumni of Color LinkedIn Groups are your go-to resources for professional contacts. Tap into the power of your Wildcat Networks!

How do you teach students a new language while wearing a protective face mask? That’s what Adeleen Brown was wondering before the 2020-21 school year began. Click here to learn how Brown—who’s a French teacher, the chair of the Language Department, and the holder of the NSFG Instructorship—came up with an innovative way to demonstrate French phonetics to her students.

We salute the Williston Northampton School faculty for being innovative, flexible, adaptable, and most of all, committed to ensuring that students are learning, engaged, and thriving.

Your support of the Williston Northampton Fund helps us meet the moment—thank you!

Stay in touch! Let us know if you would like to see any specific programming or are willing to present on a particular topic.

We want to hear from you! Email us at alumni@williston.com.

Created By
Jill Stern