Saturday, February 04, 2006

February 2006 Letter

To the Great Class of 1969:

News from the Academy

The January issue of The Scroll included two front page articles on changes to the social calendar, including the discontinuation of the annual spring break trip to Nassau which had become popular among students over the past few years as well as a growing source of concern for parents and faculty. In another shift, the Deerfield Prom, which had been open to all upperclassmen and their dates, is returning to its roots this year as an event for seniors only.

The Scroll also announced that reporters from both The New Yorker and The New York Times had visited campus last fall to interview Headmaster Eric Widmer. The articles will focus on King’s Academy and should be appearing this month or next. In another indication of how international Deerfield has become, there is a front page photo of two Deerfield juniors who are spending the year abroad in China.

This past month the Academy hosted another in the Pathways series which several Classmates have attended in the past. The Pathways event is organized by Mimi Morsman and is required for all seniors. Each year a small group of alumni return to the Academy to talk about their career paths after leaving Deerfield. Among the speakers this year was Paul Lufkin ’60 who runs an eponymous sports marketing organization in Massachusetts. After leaving Deerfield where he taught mathematics and coached football, hockey and baseball, Mr. Lufkin became assistant varsity hockey coach at Princeton and, eventually, head hockey coach at Yale.

Class News

There has been a seasonal lull in communications since I last wrote. I did, however, receive the accompanying photo of a Classmate posing in Shanghai last October with Mao Zedong. Can you identify the Classmate in this month’s Photo Trivia contest?

Another Classmate sent me an update on his activities which may go a long way towards explaining why I get an “out-of-office” reply so often when I e-mail him. Can you identify the buttoned-down, unassuming Classmate who, later in life, became such a fan of David Bowie that he became a “BowieNetter” and attended six performances on the 2004 Reality Concert Tour, including trips to Chicago and New Orleans where he had front row seats? This Classmate entered sophomore year and returned to his hometown for college where he still lives.

There were no correct answers to last month’s two trivia questions about Ephraim Williams which could have been answered by simply visiting the newly reconfigured Alumni website. Barry Ahearn became the first member of the Class to register on the website following the receipt of David Pond’s recent letter. Please let me know if you’ve misplaced the distinctive ID you need in order to register.

Annual Support

You all should have received the 2004-2005 Annual Report last month which once again underscores the remarkable generosity of Deerfield Alumni, parents and friends. The Great Class of 1969 received special recognition in a listing of the five classes which showed the greatest improvement in participation. As of the end of January, we are, as a Class, running neck-and-neck with last year in terms of both donors and funds raised. I will be in touch with those of you who contributed last year to see if we can avoid another mad scramble during the last quarter of the fiscal year when more than half the gifts were received. For those of you who are not listed on last year’s honor roll, please take the time to read the Annual Report and see why the Academy deserves the support of all of us. You can all make a gift without even getting up by clicking on Giving to Deerfield.

I look forward to hearing from you. Please send news or photos to me at

All the best.