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Class Notes Winter 2023

Class Notes Winter 2023

Unabridged class Note —submitted Dec 2022

From Cathy White O’Rourke :


   I am just back from one of the most wonderful experiences of my life:  my husband, John, and I just completed a 5-1/2 week driving trip, with the most important objective being to show some close friends from Mexico City a few  of our favorite Nat’l Parks:  Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce, Monument Valley.   The Mexican family was with us for 10 days, from Salt Lake City to Phoenix, via the various Parks.  We hiked and took walks all through.


But the rest of the trip, we two were just driving:  stopping to see family and friends, taking back roads just to see the scenery (and avoid the semis), exploring places we had never seen.  We had 5 weeks of the most gorgeous weather  - blue skies every day but one, and fall leaves of every color.   We covered 23 states, from New York out to Utah on the northern route, down to Arizona, and then back east on a more southern route.   We drove 7,800 miles, and had a blast!



From : Nancy Folberth Constable 
Sending you a picture taken last Saturday (Nov 5) just outside Claflin - the five of us had gathered for the weekend to attend Kristen Mortimer's Memorial Service.
As with all mini reunions, we laughed, reminisced and in this case, shed some tears for our dear friend Mort who had passed away in July.  It was a beautiful weekend weatherwise, so we definitely enjoyed our walk through the campus, remembering and pointing out changes.
Classmates after Kris Mortimer's memorial service 2022
l. to r. Lois Juliber, Jennifer Russell, Marcia (MacIntyre) Schilling, Trudy Hanmer, Nancy (Folberth) Constable
From Margi Reeve:
Susan Siegfried visited Los Angeles to lecture on portraits by Picasso and Ingres at the Norton Simon Museum. Great occasion for lunch in Pasadena with me and Nicky Murphy Holland!
From Glenda Starr Fishman:
       I suggest The Sea by John Banville which won the Booker Prize (for best English language fiction published in the UK or Ireland - and back then had to be written by a citizen of the Commonwealth, Ireland, South Africa and Zimbabwe) in 2005 and is the book I just read for my BOLLI course.  
From: Natalea Skvir: 
     Alan Bradley, “Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie” (award-winning opener in a series about a 11-year-old girl sleuth in a 1950 English village). It has already been a hit with classmates on the Shafer Zoom call.
From: Belinda Wilkins Tepper:
     I just listened to “Year of Wonders” and “Horse” by Geraldine Brooks. she adds gravitas to the historical novel. I appreciated hearing the books and the characters’ distinct voices. 
     Also, I want to recommend another book, Riding the Edge: A Love Song to Deborah.  Deborah Risk, class of '71 married Michael Tobin.They are children of the 60's--not counterculture, but definitely seekers.In 1980 they left their psychology practices for an around-the-world bicycle odyssey to explore their yearning for truth, adventure, and one another. But a journey has a mind of its own and they faced larger truths--the meaning of love, identity, and commitment. Michael did not finish the book until 2019. (It is available on Audible as well as in print.)
From: Andra Anderson Cochran
    Life on Muskrat Creek: A Homestead Family in Wyoming by Ethel Waxham Love (Wellesley 1905) and J. David Love. I tumbled into this book and other writings by and about Ethel Waxham Love while reading Basin and Range, the first in a series of books on geology and geologists written by John McPhee.  Her son, David Love, was one of the several geologists that McPhee profiled.  So was Randy Van Schmuss, one of my inspirational geology profs at Kansas University, which is why I was on this path to begin with.  What a total delight to discover Ethel Waxham Love; hers is one of many unique stories of Wellesley women that reinforces my gratitude to be a part of the Wellesley heritage.
From Margot Keam Cleary:
     "It came out in 1994, but I only recently read T.C. Boyle’s novel The Road to Wellville, about the 'healthy food' movement in the US in the early 1900s. It taught me a lot about that era, and - bonus! - it’s very funny. I discovered the book after reading a profile of Simon Rich (the son of Gail Winston '71) in which he mentioned that Boyle was one of his favorite writers. Since Rich is one of *my* favorite writers, Boyle seemed like a good bet. And that brings me to another recommendation: Rich’s collection of humor pieces, New Teeth. 'Learning the Ropes,' about a pair of pirates raising a little girl, is just about perfect."

From: Pamela Wescott:


    “Horse” by Geraldine Brooks, “a novel of art and science, love and obsession and our unfinished reckoning with racism” (From the book jacket)


From: Mary Helen Lorenz : I know you asked for one, but…


     “The Sum of Us”, by Heather McGhee;  “The Five Invitations” by Frank Ostaseki; “The Wright Brothers” by David McCullough.


From: Laura Munder:


     Two books I enjoyed are “Have you seen Luis Velez?” by Catherine Ryan Hyde, and “Pachinko” by Min Jim Lee.


From: Patricia Rosenberg: 


     Some that I may have read pre-pandemic, but which would have been great even during it:  Marilynne Robinson’s “Gilead”, “Housekeeping”, “Jack,” and “Home”; "The Hare with Amber Eyes” by Edmund de Waal; “Asymmetry” by Lisa Halliday; and Sigrid Nunez’ “The Friend” and “Mitz


From: Paula Sonnino:


    “Shoe Dog” by Phil Knight – very engaging non-fiction, about the founder of Nike.


     Lastly the tributes continue to mount and pour in from various media sources in recognition of our classmate Wilma Chen Chan, who died in November 2021. 
newspaper clipping - road named for Wilma Chen Chan
East Bay Times, Nov. 3, 2022  Excerpts:
(Alameda County) District Attorney Nancy O’Malley said, "Our community continues to mourn the loss" of Supervisor Chan.  "Our hearts are still broken. The impact on our community made by Supervisor Chan will live on forever. Her loss leaves a void in Alameda County."
Chan was initially a member of the Alameda County Board of Supervisors from 1994 to 2000 and then a member of the California State Assembly from 2000 to 2006, representing Alameda and parts of Oakland. From 2002 to 2004 she was the Assembly majority leader, becoming the first Asian American to hold that position. She decided to run for her old District 3 Supervisor seat again in 2010 and was reelected. She also won terms in 2014 and 2018.

Over three decades in politics, Chan was known as a tough, candid elected leader committed to children’s issues and health care. She was the first Asian American woman elected to the county Board of Supervisors and the first to serve as majority leader of the state Assembly.

Since her death, the county operated Highland Hospital, considered one of the premier trauma centers in the country, was renamed in her honor and is now known as the Wilma Chan Highland Hospital CampusMadison Park, located at Ninth and Jackson streets in Oakland’s Chinatown, will officially be renamed Wilma Chan Park at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday, Nov. 4. The Alameda City Council in February also approved renaming Constitution Way to Wilma Chan Way, after a request from her children. The city will have an event with Chan’s family on the morning of Nov. 16 to unveil 10 new street signs.

Mercury News, May 4, 2022 Excerpts:

“Supervisor Chan’s contributions supporting the wellness of underserved and uninsured communities – especially championing children, families, seniors, immigrants, and AAPI neighbors – spanned her service on the Oakland Unified School District Board of Education, Alameda County Board of Supervisors, California State Assembly, and Alameda County Children and Families Commission,” City Council President Nikki Fortunato Bas wrote in a letter urging the council to rename Madison park to Wilma Chan Park.