Grapevine January 2013

By CommandC

Portia Sampson-Knapp ’00 has created a scholarship fund in collaboration with The Deepwater Experiential Education Fund in honor of her sister Sabrina ’98, who passed away in 2004. A launch event is planned on Saturday March 16, 2013, 3pm at the Philadelphia Canoe Club. All friends are invited! Contact Portia at for information about the event or to make a donation.

The Ford family wrote: Malcolm ’74 is still teaching at Penn Charter, played a mean “Base in Your Face” for a teacher talent show. Kathy misses you all! Malcolm ’03 is co-captain of the lacrosse team at King’s College, and Josh ’06 attends Virginia Wesleyan College.

Jennifer Camins Schwartz ’83 married Frank Schwartz and now has a baby girl, Danica. “Miquon has such a special place in my heart and it means the world to me.”

Bill Kirber ’64 is thinking about his 50th reunion next year and would like to hear from his classmates. We love – and have published elsewhere – this testimonial from Bill: “After graduating from Miquon, I went to some pretty well respected schools – Germantown Friends, Harvard, Penn Medical School. I would choose Miquon over any of them as having had the greatest influence on my education – a life-long curiosity and interest in learning new things as well as the confidence to pursue whatever path I chose.”

Erica Frenkel ’93 gave a TedX talk last year describing the universal anesthesia machine developed by her company, Gradian Health Systems. Check it out on YouTube.

Adina Segal Shapiro ’87 has moved back to Philadelphia with her husband and son.

Michelle Levenson ’00 is working at REI in Conshohocken, while actively exercising her many skills as an outdoor adventure enthusiast. Brother Anthony ’97 is in Pittsburgh working for Apple.

Chris McGinnis ’91 became engaged to Alice Watson-Smith, and writes: “I just wanted to let all our Miquon friends know that the engagement happened at Miquon on the big red rock by the swing-set on the 29th of August.” Sweet!

David Goldberg ’91 married Naomi Rabeeya in September. Don Rasmussen was among the many Miquon friends in attendance.

Ruthie Baron ’96 will become a published author in May; look for her young adult novel “Defriended.”

Lowell Walker ’96 had only a brief time as a student in the early grades at Miquon, but it was a formative experience. “I am currently enrolled in the Stanford Teacher Education Program to earn a Masters and multiple subject teaching credential with a bilingual certification (in Spanish). I start student teaching in a kindergarten bilingual classroom next week. Many times, questions like “what made you want to be a teacher” or “what makes a great teacher” come up, and Cynthia Adams is always part of my answer, despite being the kindergarten teacher I had at age 6, 21 years ago.”

Clara Waloff ’94 presented her original research as part of the Bank Street Graduate School of Education’s Leadership in Community-Based Learning program. Titled “Put Yourself in My Shoes: Toward Social Change and Community Development through the Arts,” Clara studied a group of urban adolescents who addressed the question “How can we create art that is beautiful yet inspiring enough to change how people think and act?” Clara is currently an artist and community educator in Brooklyn, NY.

Derek Davis checked in recently: “I was maintenance honcho in the early ’70s and also parent to Morgan ’78 and Erin ’80 Davis, grandparent to Samantha ’04 and Abigail ’07 Hesser. I’m probably also the reincarnation of at least one of the trees by the creek. I’m president of the Sullivan County Council on the Arts … our major endeavor these days is the Roving Historical Theater, which puts on an original play each year. Each play resurrects the history of a particular Sullivan County community … I write most of the scripts, my wife, Linda White, directs, and we assemble an intergenerational cast from throughout the country and a bit outside. For both Linda and me, we’ve never found a better place to be, or more satisfaction in what we’re doing, though technically “retired.” It’s more like becoming “untired” after having lived in a tiring world.”

Ben Taggart ’99 is working as an economist for Google. He lives in San Francisco and is an ardent skier and climber.

Melina Avery ’08 will graduate from Harriton High School in 2014 and has committed to attend Syracuse University as a lacrosse player.

Carla Bregman ’58 is living in the Boston area and would love to get in touch with classmates and others from the late 50s. You can reach her at

Mona Molarsky ’65 writes: “I was at Miquon School in 2nd and 3rd grade (Lillian Nairn’s class and Esther Soler’s class) –so that was 1961 and 1962. I graduated from Miquon Upper School in the first graduating class, 1971. I live in New York City where I am a writer and a private college admissions counselor.

Carl Sigmond ’03 is a senior at Haverford College and recently won an award for his film, “Discovering the Discovery and the Grandfather Who Saved Millions,” documenting the life and legacy of his grandfather, Albert Schatz, who discovered streptomycin, the first antibiotic effective against tuberculosis.

Nick Marini ’04 is majoring in Cinema Studies at UPenn and did an internship at CBS last summer in LA. He’s signed with Ford Models in NYC.

Jamie Stern-Gottfried ’92 was unable to attend his 20th reunion last spring, but sent the following news: “After graduating Cheltenham High School in 1998, I studied mechanical engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, Massachusetts. My B.S. in 2002 was followed by an M.S. in Fire Protection Engineering in 2004. Fire safety became my career, with its origins at the fire table in Tony Hughes’ science class! In 2004 I moved to London and worked as a fire safety engineer for Arup, an international engineering firm. I also conducted research in Fire Safety Engineering at The University of Edinburgh in Scotland, earning my Ph.D. in the summer of 2011. After 7 years in the U.K., I recently moved with my wife Katharina to her hometown, Berlin, Germany. Looking back on my time at Miquon, I really appreciate the love of learning that everyone shares there. This excitement for discovery has been a key part of my lifelong learning.”

And a classmate, David Rosenblatt ’92 also sent news: “After Miquon, I studied at Germantown Friends School and Harvard College, earning an A.B. in Government. During both high school and college, I continued to explore opportunities for theatrical absurdity with fond memories of the mummers’ plays produced by John Krumm. After college, my interest in organizing and social justice led me to work on political campaigns and as a union organizer. I moved, with my wife Karen, to Washington, D.C. in 2008 and we both work for an international union, supporting workers to envision and fight for economic justice. In 2011, we welcomed our son, Nico, into our lives and we look forward to introducing him to the Miquon spirit of playful learning and learnful play.”

Gabe Kuriloff ’90 was profiled recently in Miquon Connections. Miriam Rock ’04 wrote the article. Read it here.

Sandy Perloff Morris ’56 was sorry to miss the San Francisco reunion in February 2012. She is a family law attorney in private practice in San Diego. She has fond memories of “happy years” at Miquon, especially of the Rasmussens … “I learned all about folk music (the Weavers in those days) from them.” She would love to be in touch with former classmates.

Adrian Bridges ’01 is completing a Masters degree in Music Composition at New York University and expects to pursue a PhD.

Julia Soffa ’98 lives in San Francisco where she works as a Product Marketing Manager for Adobe. She recently spoke with another Miquon alum in the Bay Area, Peter Solmssen ’42. Read her account of that conversation.

Aaron Rock-Singer ’97 married Cara Singer in August 2012. Donations to Miquon in honor of their marriage were made by the couple, their family, and friends. They live in New York City.

Meg Cassedy-Blum ’97 married Dan Beekman in August 2012 in his hometown of Seattle. She is a 5th year teacher of English at a Bronx, NY middle school.

Monika Lee ’77 sent this touching note along with her Annual Giving contribution: “Miquon has prepared me for handling “life today” in a way that no other elementary school possibly could have. Thank you Miquon!”

We are sad to report the recent deaths of several Miquon friends:

Roger Thanhauser ’52 passed away in October 2012. He is survived by his wife Nula and daughters Sarah, Kaitlin, and Clare.

Eliot Mancall passed away in January 2013. Eliot was the husband of Jackie, Board President 1964-66 and Librarian at Miquon 1967-75, and father of Andy ’69 and Peter ’71. The family have invited contributions in Eliot’s memory to be sent to The Miquon School.

Bob Paige passed away in July 2012. Bob created the artwork for many Miquon diplomas and was the father of David ’77 and Daniel ’84.

Bob Bricklin, Treasurer at Miquon in the 1960s, passed away in January 2012. He was the father of Lila ’68.

Bonnie Acker ‘61 wrote to let us know of the passing of her mother Toodie, a former Miquon Board member, at the ripe old age of 100. “I am so thankful that she and my pa, Worth, discovered Miquon and then enrolled my brother and me. I am continuing to try to bring some Miquon-style activities to the public schools here in Burlington, VT – always treasuring my Miquon memories.”

And there is recent happy baby news:

A daughter, Ella, to Maddy Sauer ’86 and Michael Mahoney
A son, Berk, to Martha Northcutt Ozturk ’95 and Ayberk Ozturk.
A daughter, Louisa, to Alice Pope Walters ’91 and Marcus Walters, sister for Eve.
A daughter, Lucille, to Frank Graf ’83 and Jennifer Walker Graf.
A son, Benjamin, to Katie Shelley Brown (assistant teacher 2005-12) and Julius Brown.
A son, Lucas, to Shoshana Kuriloff Sicks ’94 and Will Sicks.
A son, Julius, to Leah Bustard Evans ’89 and Anatole Evans, brother for Sophie ’18 and Camille.

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