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President's Message

July 21, 2022

Hello My Dear Classmates, 

Joi (Huckaby) Rideout ’82 here, your newly elected Class President, Cheerleader and Party Planner for the next 5 years, and it’s my pleasure for sure. 

I, along with your new Vice President Anne Byerly, your Secretary Hilary Jackson and Treasurer Jackie Morrisette Olivier, hope you are all doing well.  

Picking up the helm from our fearless Class President these past 5 years, the amazing Virginia Lazala and Louise Mamrus Westhauser (VP), Julie Coryell (Treasurer), Amy Willard Cross (Secretary), we are also pledging to follow in their footsteps and build on what they’ve started by encouraging you to join in the fun, laughter, support and companionship of this amazing sisterhood that is the Wellesley Class of 1982. 

For me, these last few months have been a whirlwind of graduation events, AAU basketball tournaments and weddings! At the same time, I was dodging staff layoffs and the COVID-19 virus, but amidst all of that, our 40th Class Reunion this past June was a standout.  

From campus tours and stimulating seminars, the Friday night social, to dancing the night away after our classmate, Elsa Jones Nance’s inspiring testimony on Saturday, we couldn’t have asked for a more fun-filled, thought-provoking and bonding experience.   Of course, topping it all off was a bright and sunny morning for our Alumnae Parade and a joyous round of step-singing at the Hay Outdoor Theatre behind Alumnae Hall.  The camaraderie this class has built and held on to over these past 40 years was palpable.  Many thanks to our fantastic 40th Reunion and Record Book committee members for making it such a memorable experience.  Amazing work my friends!  

As we emerge from this “unprecedented time” of the novel Corona virus, social justice reckonings and political upheaval, over these next 5 years, leading up to our 45th reunion, let us take the opportunity to reset, renew, and re-connect with ourselves and with each other.  

In the sisterhood of our Wellesley experience, we share a culture of freedom, empowerment, open-mindedness and inclusion that Wellesley has always strived to provide.  Aspirational traits, oh so popular now, especially after George Floyd, Roe v Wade and January 6, but 44 years ago, when it wasn’t the “it” thing to do, Wellesley worked hard to create a diverse, multi-cultural world for us within the limited boundaries of Route 16, Central and Washington Streets.   The campus was always populated with women from all over the world, of various identities, races, creed and religions - there to learn how to live together with our differences, not despite them.    

Our differences are the true value proposition of the Wellesley experience. How fortunate we were then and are today, to have shared that microcosm of what the world could be.

On this reunion trip, I took a solo stroll across the campus, from Harambee House past Schneider Center, the Library and the chapel, towards the new Science Center, admiring the fully grown in landscaping that were mere grass fields back in our day.  I admired the new architectural addition, the edible gardens and the amazing new greenhouse housing the Global Flora Collection.   Just like the hundreds of varieties of rare, beautiful flora and fauna in that glass house, so can we, as classmates all “live” together, each of us celebrating one another, taking care of each other and thriving because we are each of us unique and special in our own way. 

Although we have 5 years until our 45th reunion, let us come together more often in the interim. Anne, Hilary, Jackie and I have lots of ideas to bring more of us together so be on the lookout for messages from us in the coming weeks and months as we explore ways for us to communicate and interact with each other.  

Up first are Class Notes which are due August 15.  If you have any updates, stories, testimonies or diatribes (just kidding) you’d like to share please get those to Hilary Jackson at Jacksobosox@optonline.net before August 15.  

Please post pictures that you have of reunions, past and present as well as pictures of your time at Wellesley so that we, as a class, have more pictures of us than the College archives. Click on the link and upload your photos.  general folder for photos.   

If you are interested in purchasing a Record Book they are still available for $10.  Please reach out to Caroline Mortimer carolinemortimer@comcast.net .

If you have attended or are planning a mini-reunion or get-together with classmates please let our VP, Anne Byerly ( kbyerly1@gmail.com ) know when and where and we’ll publicize it for you and make sure to send us photos of the mini reunions so we can post them on our Class Website https://alum.wellesley.edu/class-of-1982, Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/Wellesley82 and our new Instagram page @wellesley1982.  

And please save the date Saturday, October 15, 1:00pm Eastern for an All Class Zoom meeting.  More on this later.

Whether through mini-reunions, group activities, individual re-connects, Instagram posts, or if you dare a metaverse meeting, whatever forms our togetherness takes let’s tap into that infinite source of validation, admiration and support that is the Class of 1982.    

Positive energy forms and flows when you make new connections so please reach out to an old friend, roommate, or teammate that you haven’t spoken with in years. Attend one of the local or regional mini-reunions you’ll be learning about, or hop on zoom for one of the class meetings will be having throughout the year.  Partake. Come to the table.  Put yourself in the mix.  We need each and every one of you to take part and make this next 5 years inspiring, validating and just plain fun. 

1-9-8-2 Wellesley Rah 1-9-8-2 Wellesley varied, vintage, oh so fine, we’re the grapes that make the wine!  

Peace and blessings to you all, 

Joi 

310.663.1160 (please call or text me anytime!)

Wellesley82classpresident@gmail.com