Sunday, March 12, 2017

Winter Term Report Card - 2017

To the Great Class of 1969:

Whatever your political persuasions, you have to admit the last few months have been a wild ride! The election was destined to result in a sense of time warp regardless of the outcome but who would have guessed that the Newspeak-worthy phrase "alternative facts" would propel 1984 to the top of the best sellers list for the first time in 33 years or that the ratings for Saturday Night Live would be at a 20-year high or that Ladbroke's would begin quoting odds on impeachment even before the inauguration had taken place? With just over two years until our 50th Reunion, who's to say where we will be on this long and winding road when we meet again.

The one thing you can take to the bank at this time is that our Reunion will take place June 6-9, 2019. The timeline I received from the Academy indicates that preparation for the event typically begins about two years beforehand. If you would like to become proactive in the planning or would be interested in hosting a regional mini-reunion in advance, please let me know.

Our Reunion will be orchestrated by Rachel Moore who I met on a recent visit to New York. Rachel joined Deerfield's Office of Alumni and Development last fall to head up the 50th Reunions as well as the Boyden Society which previously had been managed separately. As Tom Ehrgood knows from his work at Amherst, there is an obvious synergy between 50th Reunions and Planned Giving. In that regard, eight members of the Class are members of the Boyden Society at last count, and I anticipate that number will grow meaningfully if history is any guide.

News of the Academy

The big news this term, if you haven't had a chance to read the most recent issue of Deerfield Magazine, was that the Board of Trustees gave the go-ahead to replace the hockey rink with a new $68 million Field House which is scheduled for completion in the fall of 2018. The new athletic complex will include, in addition to a new hockey rink, more locker rooms, year round practice facilities, an indoor tennis court, a "spinning room" with 20 bikes, an elevated track and a golf simulator. Let's hope the new facilities improve the fortunes of the hockey team which had a losing record for the fourth year in a row as well as the other teams which now will be able to practice during the offseason in the Field House. The addition of new squash facilities ten years ago succeeded in transforming the squash program as demonstrated once again this year by the girls' squash team which went 14-1 and tied Greenwich Academy for the New England Championship.

News of the Class

Marty Kaiser has been named a Senior Fellow of the Public Square Program which is an initiative of The Democracy Fund, a bipartisan organization which makes grants to organizations it believes will improve the political system.

Ed Grosvenor is hoping to relaunch American Heritage Magazine which has been dedicated to improving historical and civic literacy since its founding in 1949. Ed raised money through a crowdfunding platform in December but will need additional funding to save American Heritage. You can help Ed meet his worthy objective by making a tax deductible contribution to the American Heritage Society, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit.

AC Starkey joined Rusty Young recently for a John Sebastian (The Lovin' Spoonful) concert in Delray, FL. By all appearances, Rusty has had a busy winter organizing classic rock and folk music concerts featuring music from the '60's and the '70's all along the I-95 corridor from Vero Beach to Ft. Lauderdale.

You can add my name to the growing list of retirees in the Class. I decided that 40-years on Wall Street was enough and will now be focusing on what the future may hold. The wisdom of this decision was reinforced recently by John Mills who called me to recount a harrowing personal experience and made the observation that it had forced him to recognize that life was not some sort of dress rehearsal for whatever's next.

Best wishes to all.