Welcome to the Fall 2013 issue of the William & Mary Alumni Magazine.
Welcome to the Fall 2013 issue of the William & Mary Alumni Magazine.
3 Selected from more than 100 graduate and undergraduate students across Virginia, three William & Mary students – all members of the Class of 2014 – were named as 2013 Governor’s Fellows. The program, based in the Governor’s Office in Richmond, Va., gives the fellows experience in public service at the highest levels.
$2,073,222 Donations to the Law School’s Annual Fund totaled $2,073,222 — the largest amount in the Law School’s history. The previous high mark was $1,907,660 in fiscal year 2012. Gifts to the Law School Annual Fund have increased by 50 percent during the past three years.
13 Thirteen recent William & Mary graduates have been awarded Fullbright U.S. student grants, tying an institutional record set in 2010. Six other alumni have been named alternates. The recipients will use the grants to travel to other countries during 2013-14, teaching and conducting research in a variety of fields.
1,483 TThe Class of 2017 includes 1,483 students (20 of whom will be in the joint degree program with the University of St Andrews), who were chosen from a pool of 14,047. This is the ninth consecutive year that William & Mary has seen record-breaking application numbers.
9th With 30 alumni currently serving in the Peace Corps, William & Mary is ranked ninth among the mediumsized universities on a list released by the organization. Since the Peace Corps’ inception, 588 William & Mary alumni have served as volunteers with the group.
Spencer “Skip” Niles, former professor and department head for the nationally ranked programs of educational psychology, counseling and special education at Pennsylvania State University,is the new dean of William & Mary’s School of Education. In his role at Penn State, Niles oversaw two undergraduate, seven master’s degree and five doctoral programs, all ranked among the top 20 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. “Bringing Skip Niles to William & Mary is very good news for the university,” said President Taylor Revely. “Dr. Niles is highly respected in the field of education, with a great breadth of experience and wisdom.” As dean at William & Mary, Niles is responsible for the leadership of the School of Education, including academic planning, preparation of the budget and decisions on personnel and resource allocation. He will oversee the school’s undergraduate and graduate programs and will lead its 39 full-time faculty members, 550 students and 14 centers, institutes and projects, which are housed in a recently completed $48 million academic facility.
William & Mary Law School’s Lewis B. Puller Jr. Veterans Benefits Clinic has joined the Department of Veterans Affairs Fully Developed Claims (FDC) Community of Practice. The Puller Clinic is the first law school clinic in the nation to be invited to join the FDC Community of Practice. Since the clinic accepted its first clients in 2008, more than 90 law students, working under the supervision of managing attorneys, have assisted hundreds of veterans with claims for disability benefits. Earlier this year Sen. Mark Warner sent a letter to his colleagues suggesting the Puller Clinic may be a way to help solve the nation’s backlog of disability claims. “Our students’ assistance has had a profound effect on the veterans they have served,” said Davison M. Douglas, dean of William & Mary Law School. “The professional growth we have seen in our clinic students and their commitment to service has been tremendously inspiring.”
In September the W&M Arts & Entertainment Alumni Council held its second annual Arts & Entertainment Festival at the College. The theme for this year’s event was “The Business of Show: The Arts & Entertainment in Dollars and Cents.” Speakers included industry experts from the motion picture, television, theater, advertising and news industries, who discussed how the arts and other entertainment content is financed and marketed. Headlining the festival was award-winning actress Glenn Close ’74, D.A. ’89, who participated in a discussion and Q&A session about her career and roles in film, television and theater.
In a world where receiving a quality education is not an equal opportunity, two William & Mary alumni are working to make sure every child has the chance to learn. Both residents of Indianapolis (in fact, both residents of Broadway Street, living across the street from one another), Patrick Herrel ’05 and George Srour ’05 are changing the lives of young people worldwide.
But before they set out to change the world, the two started a little smaller — with the W&M community. They met while participating in the Sharpe Community Scholars Program, which supports the development of students through community involvement. Participants develop community-based research skills and form action plans for community engagement.
During his time at the College, Srour participated in many service activities. He raised money to help replace trees on campus that were downed by Hurricane Isabel. During an internship to Uganda through the United Nations’ World Food Program, Srour visited an orphanage in Kampala. When he returned to campus, he began the Christmas in Kampala campaign, which raised funds for the construction of a new school.
The trip made him realize there was a sustainable way to help the children in sub-Saharan Africa, where half the world’s out-of-school children live. “I realized I could do a lot more than just Christmas in Kampala,” said Srour. “I had an entrepreneurial spirit and I found a niche that hadn’t yet been served.” In 2006 he started his own company, Building Tomorrow, which works to build schools in sub- Saharan Africa. Building Tomorrow’s model creates clear guidelines for what is the local community’s responsibility, what is the local government’s responsibility and what is Building Tomorrow’s responsibility. The longer-term focus and clarity sets Building Tomorrow apart from other similar organizations in the United States.
“We can’t afford to continue this, to have so many people out of school,” said Srour. “We need to captivate the minds of young people and teach them they can be a force of good.”
The new schools have served to spur change in African communities. New roads have been built, scholarships funded, teachers organized and housing constructed as the result of communities being empowered to help themselves. The organization also empowers young people in the United States to invest their resources in providing students with access to an education. Since the founding of Building Tomorrow, thousands of students across the United States have raised money for the construction of schools, have developed a connection to their global community and have gained understanding of the opportunities we take for granted.
Herrel considered the opportunities that he took for granted when he graduated and it was what led him to his job in education.
During his time at W&M, Herrel was a driving force behind the Alan Buzkin Bone Marrow Drive, which has become one of the most successful outreach programs in the country. After graduation, he considered law school, but then met a recruit for Teach for America. The recruit made him realize there were tangible ways to address civil issues right away without spending years in law school. He told Herrel that equal access to education was a pressing issue facing future generations.
“I sat back and acknowledged the degree of my own privilege,” said Herrel. “Creating these opportunities for kids really fired me up.”
Herrel joined the organization, teaching high school civics and economics in Charlotte, N.C. He eventually turned to recruiting for Teach for America. When a position opened at The Mind Trust, an education organization based in Indianapolis, Srour and other friends contacted him, telling him, “You’ve got to do this.”
The Mind Trust aims not only to grow the capacity of excellent charter schools in Indianapolis, but to bring the best charter models to the city — schools that show that all students, regardless of circumstance, can achieve great results.
Currently in Indianapolis, there are 40,000 public school students and less than half of those have access to quality schools. Herrel is in charge of the Education Entrepreneur Fellowship Program, which supports its fellows as they launch their new education adventures in Indianapolis. The initiatives that have come out of this program have helped improve student learning and the quality of K-12 school systems.
“There has been persistent failure to provide equal access to education, said Herrel. “When the system is not serving these students, we have to take a new approach. I want a system created where all students have equal opportunities. We will continue to make student-focused changes and push for what all students deserve, to give them schools that expect them to achieve on a national scale.”
Herrel and Srour were recently named to the annual Forbes 30 Under 30 list, which recognizes top innovators and entrepreneurs in the nation.
“My first thought was I made it just in the nick of time,” said Srour. “But seriously, I know a lot of people on that list; it’s humbling to be included on there with people I look up to.”
Herrel is not surprised there are two William & Mary names on Forbes’ list, due to the College’s emphasis on community engagement. “William & Mary is all about serving and getting involved,” said Herrel. “It’s an ethos — that is what we do and it’s not optional. We have churned out some great leaders and I’m really proud of our alumni.”
William & Mary set new records in fiscal year 2013 in terms of total giving and outright cash gifts. Alumni, parents and friends gave or committed a total of $104.3 million during the fiscal year that ended June 30, making it the most successful year for private giving in the university’s 320-year history. The previous record for total giving, which includes cash gifts, pledges and bequests, was $101.65 million in 2005 during the final year of Timothy J. Sullivan’s ’66 presidency.
During fiscal year 2013, $70.04 million in cash gifts, which includes realized bequests, contributed to the effort. That total represents a record — topping the previous high set in 2009 by nearly $20 million. The university raised $43.6 million in cash in 2012.
“Philanthropy has never been more important to the success of colleges and universities than it is today,” said President Taylor Reveley. “The W&M family has truly risen to the occasion with extraordinary generosity.”
More donors also participated during fiscal year 2013 than any other fiscal year in William & Mary’s history. A total of 31,141 individuals, corporations and foundations made gifts to W&M during the fiscal year. Among them, 18,552 alumni made gifts, including 14,368 undergraduate alumni, or 23.9 percent of the overall undergraduate alumni body.
“Gifts of all sizes from all corners are making a significant difference for William & Mary,” said Matthew T. Lambert ’99, vice president for university development. Individual gifts of $250 or less collectively brought in $2.93 million for William & Mary. And more than 61 percent of William & Mary’s undergraduate Class of 2013 participated in the Senior Class Gift effort.
In addition, Lambert added, the university benefited from several large gifts during the fiscal year, including $23.9 million realized from the bequest left William & Mary by the late Walter J. Zable ’37, LL.D. ’78.
Zable’s bequest, which supports scholarships for student-athletes, renovations for Zable Stadium and other uses, ranks among the single largest gifts in William & Mary history.
W&M also received a $10-million commitment from Hunter Jones Smith ’51 to establish the Hunter J. Smith Endowment for Freshman Seminars. The gift supports William & Mary’s freshman seminars, which are courses limited to 15 students each or less that help students develop critical thinking, writing and research skills. William & Mary’s program for 1693 Scholars also received significant support during fiscal year 2013. These very demanding merit-based scholarships cover tuition, fees, room and board. Rob ’74 and Jean Berger Estes ’75 committed $1 million to fund the Estes Family 1693 Scholarship. Sara Ives Gore ’56 established a $1 million Gore 1693 Scholarship. H. Thomas Watkins III ’74, chair of the William & Mary Foundation Board of Trustees and a newly appointed member of the College’s Board of Visitors, along with his wife, Wendy, and their family, committed $5 million to the university, including support for the Watkins Family 1693 Scholarship, the Watkins Family Athletic Endowment and the Watkins Business Faculty Research Endowment.
“Our alumni, parents and friends set the bar high for William & Mary in fiscal year 2013,” Lambert said. “It is imperative that we continue this momentum over the next year to make the university more accessible and an even better place to learn, teach and do meaningful research. Truly, philanthropy provides the margin of excellence for our people and programs.”
Reveley noted that the record success occurred during a transition year in University Development. William & Mary’s fundraising department had three vice presidents over the course of 12 months. Former Vice President Sean Pieri left the university in October. Associate Vice President Earl T. Granger III ’92, M.Ed. ’98 served as interim vice president while a search was underway. Lambert assumed responsibilities as vice president in April.
Pippin L. Saunders ’16 has come — literally — across the globe to play college sports at William & Mary. Word of mouth and a scholarship provided by generous donors to the Tribe Club brought Pippin from Australia to Williamsburg and the 20-year-old’s performance on the field hockey team has been nothing short of phenomenal.
A field hockey player since age 5, Pippin showed an early aptitude for the sport in her hometown of Mittagong, a town of about 8,000 located 80 miles from Sydney in the state of New South Wales. Her talent earned her a spot at the New South Wales Institute of Sport Academy every year from 2008 through 2012. She represented her state in competition against field hockey teams from other Australian states through high school. One of her teammates was Emma Clifton ’15, from the town of Loomberah six hours away, who graduated from high school and came to William & Mary to play field hockey.
The two kept in touch.
It didn’t hurt either that the W&M field hockey team’s associate coach, Tess Ellis, is a fellow Aussie who’d been a member of the Australian National Indoor Team for eight years.
Clifton got Pippin in touch with Coach Ellis along with Coach Peel Hawthorne ’80. When Coach Ellis made a trip home, she visited Pippin and her parents.
“It kind of got me on board for William & Mary,” recalled Pippin, who is the first Aboriginal student to attend the College. “I didn’t come to W&M for an official visit, so it was a bit of a wild decision I guess,” said Pippin. “But it worked out very well, I love our team, and I’m really enjoying it.” During her first year, Pippin won the honor of Offensive MVP after leading the team with 22 points — the most points for a William & Mary freshman since 1980.
Pippin also was named to the Colonial Athletic Association’s All-Rookie Team and was named All-State second team by the Virginia Sports Information Directors. Pippin said she wouldn’t have considered the College if it hadn’t been for a scholarship.
“William & Mary wouldn’t have been an option for me because of the expenses. It would have been pretty expensive to come over. I would have stayed and studied in Australia. But when the chance to play and study at William & Mary presented itself, I thought I should take it. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” she said.
Annual gifts to the Tribe Club have a major impact on the lives of student-athletes like Pippin, who understand and appreciate the support and the education they receive. In June 2013, the NCAA honored the William & Mary field hockey team and five other athletic squads at the College with its Public Recognition Award for strong academics. The NCAA looked at the teams’ academic performance based on academic eligibility, retention and graduation rate of student-athletes. Winners of the award had to finish in the top 10 percent of the national average for the sport.
“I remember looking on the William & Mary website and Coach Ellis telling me that it really is a Tribe,” said Pippin. “But I don’t think you really understand what that means until you get here.”
It was a rainy summer, great for ducks and mosquitoes, but for archaeologists? Not so much. “We have to bail out the dig, with buckets, just about every day,” said Chelsea Ryan ’14. “That’s been kind of frustrating.”
Ryan served as an intern with the summer archaeological field schools working around Brown Hall. The field schools, conducted in conjunction with the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, returned to the William & Mary dormitory for a second summer, in hopes of discovering more evidence of the Bray School, an establishment dating to 1760 whose mission was the religious education of free and enslaved black children.
The rainy summer didn’t dampen any archaeological enthusiasm. The two field school sessions became a race against time and weather to uncover features and artifacts supporting documentary evidence that places the Bray School on the site now occupied by Brown Hall.
Terry Meyers, Chancellor Professor of English, not only has shown where the Bray School was, but he also has compiled evidence that the original Bray School building is still standing. If he is right, it’s down the street in Prince George House, now home to the university’s ROTC program.
Meyers also is the co-chair of the Lemon Project, an ongoing investigation of William & Mary’s history of race relations from the days of slavery, the Jim Crow period and up to the present. One afternoon, the field school students took a break from the dig to attend Meyers’ presentation titled “William & Mary, Slavery and Memory.”
He spoke about Lemon, an enslaved member of the William & Mary staff and namesake of the initiative. The Bray School is among race-related elements of William & Mary’s past that are “mentioned in no College history,” Meyers said. His presentation outlined the College’s complex historical attitude toward slavery. He noted that the institution that granted an honorary degree to Granville Sharp, “England’s most famous abolitionist,” also operated a tobacco plantation with an enslaved work force.
The presentation included an overview of Meyers’ scholarship on the Bray School’s winding historical path. He told the students about the school’s founding, and that its association with William & Mary was supported by a recommendation from Benjamin Franklin A.M. 1756. Meyers also explained what led him to believe that the school was originally based on the site of Brown Hall, in what became known as the Digges House.
Archaeologists Mark Kostro and Neil Norman have supervised both years of the field schools at Brown Hall. They share Meyers’ conclusion that the Bray School operated on the site of Brown Hall, but they’re not yet willing to endorse his whole thesis.
The question is: Was the Bray School housed in the original core of Prince George House, a structure that saw a great deal of changes before being moved in 1930 to its present location?
But there’s also the possibility that the Bray School’s home was in a long-gone building that stood next door. The goal of two summers of archaeology was to find a “smoking lunchbox” to verify Meyers’ connection of the dots represented by the Bray School, the Digges House and Prince George House.
It’s a long shot. Both Kostro and Norman are cautious about saying whether archaeology can render an unambiguous confirmation of Meyers’ hypothesis that the Bray School operated in the building now known as Prince George House, and therefore is the nation’s oldest extant building used for the education of black children.
“The problem is Brown Hall,” said Kostro, a Ph.D. student in W&M’s Department of Anthropology and an archaeologist with the Colonial Williamsburg Department of Architectural and Archaeological Research.
The dorm sits smack-dab atop where the remains of both the Digges House and that pesky second structure should be. The 2013 field school probed some brick foundation pillars in the back yard of Brown, features that possibly could be part of the original section of the Digges House, but which Kostro said are more likely to belong to one of the additions to the Digges House.
There is another problem. Kostro says the work has been conducted in what archaeologists call “mixed context.” He explained that digging and plowing from the early 20th century has churned up the earth and blended artifacts from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. Older artifacts are naturally found below more recent ones, but mixed context isn’t natural: a slate pencil pulled from mixed context could date to the Bray School or 50 years later.
Artifacts include the expected detritus from a college dorm yard: pull tabs, cans, car parts. Other more relevant finds are bones, nails, pottery fragments and table glass. The likely Bray School curriculum included sewing, and the dig has turned up buttons, straight pins and other items that might have been used by the Bray School student seamstresses.
Crystal Castleberry, an archaeological intern on the 2013 dig, showed visitors to the dig a quarter-sized coin that just came to light. It was one of two such coins that turned up last summer.
“It has the head of King George III on it,” Castleberry said. “Probably late 18th century. We can’t tell the denomination; we’ll have to clean it first.”
Coins bearing the image of dead British monarchs are very interesting finds, but the field school’s bread and butter artifacts are clay marbles and slate pencils. These schoolyard items are quite common finds in Williamsburg archaeology, but two summers of digging has shown that they’re thick enough around Brown Hall that Kostro has begun to be skeptical of his professional skepticism, as he puts it.
“We haven’t found the ‘smoking lunchbox’ yet,” Kostro said, “but what we’ve found, taken all together, might add up to the lid to the thermos.”
Kostro stressed that beyond testing Meyers’ thesis, the Brown Hall work will provide valuable insights into the life of free and enslaved African-American children of the period. He said that archaeological evidence is especially important, given the thin or nonexistent historical record of the Bray School.
“This is where artifacts such as the slate pencils and marbles and sewing-related items will have their greatest value,” he said. “But they won’t be able to fully appreciate the value until we can complete the artifact identification process. And right now, we’re still working through last summer’s massive haul.”
Read more about research at W&M at: wm.edu/research/ideation
Osborn’s illustrations give life to An Eden of Sorts, as author John Hanson Mitchell describes the acreand- a-half garden he created and nurtured with his own hands.
A fictional biography based on true events, Sand River tells the story of the major upheaval that follows the construction of a nuclear power plant in this small, idyllic town.
Motivational speaker and teacher Jennie Beal Counts hopes to help readers take responsibility for bringing happiness to fruition in their lives. Go Out on a Limb is filled with advice on how to recognize opportunities and achieve a life that is rewarding.
Fictional protagonist Jack Keller finds himself simultaneously living two very different lives. Nightmares about his life overseas continue to haunt him, and he must battle to bridge the gap between these two distinct realities to save himself and his family.
Set against a Prohibition-era backdrop of speakeasies and vaudeville houses, The Impersonator tells the thrilling fictional tale of a missing heiress and the woman who impersonates her to inherit her fortune.
Hoping to impact a culture defined by immediate gratification and material comforts, Difficult is the Path references scripture and parables to demonstrate the difficulties in choosing to follow Jesus’ teachings.
The William & Mary Alumni Magazine features recently published books by alumni and faculty, as well as works by alumni painters, sculptors, musicians, filmmakers and other artists. Please send books or samples to: William & Mary Alumni Magazine, P.O. Box 2100, Williamsburg, VA 23187 or email email@example.com. Due to limited space, some reviews will be online only.
Jill Miller wants to battle giants. In one year at the helm of William & Mary’s women’s cross country team, the coach has instilled the vision of a national caliber cross country program— the team that recorded some of the most impressive milestones of William & Mary athletics last year. “I believe the Tribe can be a team that battles big name schools,” Miller said. Last season, that belief became reality when the women’s harriers climbed as high as 17th nationally (its best ranking in over a decade), briefly holding a spot on top of regional rankings for the Southeast before turning in a 137-27 record. Miller would go on to guide the College to a program best second-place finish in the Southeast Regional qualifier and a 21st place finish in the NCAA Championships. Miller was named CAA Coach of the Year for her efforts in leading the Tribe back to its first CAA championship since 2005. William & Mary performed a clean sweep of the CAA’s postseason awards, taking Coach of the Year, Rookie of the Year and Player of the Year back to Williamsburg.
But she did not throw in the towel there. Miller followed rising sophomore runner Emily Stiles, just one of a number of runners on Jill’s roster that have earned and enjoyed national success, to the World Cross Country Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland.
After last year’s campaign, Miller and the Tribe have come into the fall with high expectations. Miller entrusts herself with giving her runners the confidence to move forward, essentially what cross country is all about: who can move forward the fastest. In a team sport made up of individuals, Miller presses her runners to be competitors. “Times will come when we start to compete,” Miller said. “That means making W&M into the toughest, most confident team to step to the line.”
Communication is the cornerstone of Miller’s program—communication and collaboration, as Miller has the unique advantage of the services of W&M director of track and field and men’s cross country coach Stephen Walsh. Together the two act as coach, trainer, motivator and physician, paying rigorous attention to each individual, making sure “each girl gets what she needs.” This calls for a hands-on approach that reaches out beyond the cross country course. “Of course, a lot revolves around food,” Miller said. But she also emphasizes a balance that student-athletes at William & Mary must work for to be able to thrive, to stay in top shape and to be competitors.
Coming off the most successful season in William & Mary baseball history, head coach Jamie Pinzino has a lot to be proud of. Before taking the reins of the program, Pinzino enjoyed success for the College last season leading the best pitching staff in the CAA, a staff that, among other accolades, would produce the 13th best ERA in the country.
But Pinzino’s first season as head coach ended up producing a number of firsts for the entire program. The Tribe, under Pinzino’s leadership, earned its first NCAA at-large selection, tallied its first wins in the NCAA Tournament and received its first postseason ranking. Collegiate Baseball newspaper poll chose the Tribe as the 28th best team in the nation to close the 2013 season. “At any level of college baseball it’s about not beating yourself,” said Pinzino. “You have to make the routine plays and minimize your mistakes and force other people to beat you.” That was difficult for a lot of Tribe opponents this season. In his first season at the helm, Pinzino coached the boys at Plumeri Park to a school record 39 wins, a landmark campaign for William & Mary baseball.
Pinzino loves his job and he attributes it to the people he’s surrounded by. “This coaching thing is a lot more enjoyable when you have guys around that are good people, that you enjoy being around. Those relationships that you develop with those players, that’s really what it’s all about.”
Pinzino believes the atmosphere fostered at William & Mary is key to success for student-athletes because it’s the perfect balance of academics and athletics. “I think that at a school like this, it’s a unique opportunity with what we have to offer here. I think it’s the whole package, more than any place in the country. You come to William & Mary and graduate, you’re going to be able to do whatever it is you want with your life. You add that to the athletic piece, getting the chance to play in a great conference in some nice facilities. On top of that the campus itself is amazing. To me when you walk around campus, the feeling that you get, it’s what a college campus should be like. Our guys are very lucky to have that.”
Following 2011’s season of just six wins, Tyler Thomson’s return to William & Mary last year signaled a revival of the College’s women’s tennis program. Thomson served as assistant Tribe coach for five years before spending 11 seasons at the Big 10 level coaching at the University of Minnesota, where he learned a lot about how to run a successful program. Returning last year, Thomson guided the Tribe in a true rebound of a season, posting a 17-6 record overall, claiming the College’s 22nd CAA championship, a spot in the NCAA tournament and a seasonhigh 25th national ranking. “My time at William & Mary was among the best years of my life,” said Thomson. “I really had an amazing experience here. To be leading the program now is something that is very exciting for me.”
Thomson’s efforts in the 2012 season did not go without notice. He was named CAA Coach of the Year. Five women’s tennis players earned All-CAA honors with junior Marya Belaraya being named both CAA Player of the Year and Most Outstanding Player of the CAA Tournament. Under Thomson, the Tribe sent players to the NCAA Individual Championships in both doubles and singles. The team finished the season ranked 44th nationally and fourth in the ITA Atlantic Region — a huge improvement from last season’s six wins. Thomson feels that W&M fosters an environment of success. “There are so many things that make this place special,” says Thomson. “The tradition of the program, the beauty of Williamsburg — it’s a place where, as a student-athlete, you have everything you possibly need to be successful.”
Thomson has acquired a long list of accolades and a great deal of experience in women’s collegiate tennis, but he says he is still as much a student of the game as the players he coaches. “I learn new things every day. If you think you know it all you’re going to go in the wrong direction.” As his knowledge of the game has grown, Thomson aims to instill an emphasis of giving ownership to the team: “I might give them a roadmap, but I encourage them to do the driving.”
With a full slate of CAA contenders as well as one of the top-ranked doubles teams in the nation, Tribe tennis, under Thomson, is set to travel far.
The Tribe takes on last year’s NCAA semifinalist Creighton at ODU’s annual STIHL Classic in Norfolk, Va., for one of their biggest challenges of the season. College Soccer News ranked the Bluejays No. 4 in the country in their preseason poll. With nine returning starters from the 2012 campaign, the Tribe will look to upset, after falling 2-1 to Creighton in Omaha last fall.
The Tribe takes on last year’s NCAA semifinalist Creighton at ODU’s annual STIHL Classic in Norfolk, Va., for one of their biggest challenges of the season. College Soccer News ranked the Bluejays No. 4 in the country in their preseason poll. With nine returning starters from the 2012 campaign, the Tribe will look to upset, after falling 2-1 to Creighton in Omaha last fall.
After losing a heartbreaker in Harrisonburg in double overtime last season, the Tribe looks to upset long-time rival JMU in the 2013 Homecoming game at Zable Stadium. The Dukes will be a formidable opponent with the addition of veteran D-I offensive coordinator and quarterback coach Mike O’Cain, who left Virginia Tech to join JMU’s coaching staff.
Hilary Fratzke has been named the new head coach of the College’s women’s lacrosse team, becoming the eighth coach in the program’s 44-year history. Fratzke takes over at W&M after serving as assistant coach at Northwestern for the past three seasons. Fratzke helped guide the Wildcats to back-toback national titles in 2011 and 2012 and a national semifinal appearance in 2013. Before coaching, Fratzke enjoyed an extraordinary playing career at Towson. There Frantzke was a three-time All-American and garnered CAA Player of the Year honors in 2008 and 2010. She ranks fourth all-time in the NCAA in draw controls with 327.
Recent William & Mary basketball graduate Emily Correal ’13 signed her first professional contract in July and will play for the Italian team Fila San Martino this winter. Correal established herself as a presence in the paint for the Tribe over her four-year collegiate career, starting a school-record 114 times and becoming the ninth fastest player in program history to score 1,000 points. She is only the fourth player to register 100 blocks and her 1,349 points rank sixth in school history, while her 839 rebounds rank fifth. Correal capped her time at the College by earning second team All-CAA and VaSID All- State honors her senior year.
The William & Mary men’s golf team was honored for its outstanding academic achievement, earning both team and individual recognition from the Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA). The Tribe was one of just 20 teams in all divisions (I, II, III, NJCAA and NAIA) to earn the President’s Recognition for having a GPA over 3.5 and one of only eight to repeat on the President’s list from 2011-12. Individually the Tribe had two players honored for having a GPA over 3.2, participating in half of the team’s rounds and having an average of under 76.0 strokes per round. Senior Michael Bekken and Jeremy Wells ’13 were named Cleveland Golf/ Srixon All-American scholars.
At the USAT&F Junior Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, freshman Bob Smutsky earned the Tribe their first junior men’s national championship since the early 1970s and the first men’s national throws title ever. Smutsky entered the sixth and final round of the javelin in second place by a few inches and threw a personal-best on his final attempt to win the championship. His mark of 69.08 meters is the 12th best in school history. One of the top throwers and sprinters for the Tribe this year, Smutsky had an impressive freshman campaign and Hilary Fratzke was named the CAA’s top rookie in 2013.
Joining William & Mary’s faculty roster seven years ago, psychology professor Danielle Dallaire is working in her dream job in a department she is truly passionate about. After being turned on to psychology while in high school by her older brother, Dallaire never looked back and pursued psychology as her primary area of focus during her undergraduate and graduate years of study that began at Pennsylvania State University.
Most of Dallaire’s current research is focused on at-risk youths, and she just wrapped up a study on the emotional competency of children with incarcerated mothers in which more than 150 children, caregivers and mothers were subjects. Dallaire continues to work with the College’s Healthy Beginnings Project that seeks to identify pregnancies in women who are incarcerated and provide them constant care and support throughout their pregnancies.
Dallaire expects this service initiative to be long-term as it is a great help to the community, especially the women and children it is designed to assist. Dallaire is looking forward to getting back in the classroom this fall after focusing on research during the past academic year, and she is particularly excited about sharing her love for community service in her upcoming courses. “Some of the service learning courses we have been working on in the psychology department, as well as in the community studies minor and the public health minor, are really going to take off over the next couple of years. To help students see how psychology can be applied in community settings is definitely a goal of mine.”
William & Mary provides the perfect environment for Dallaire to share her passion for learning and service, thanks in large part to the community of faculty and students who are eager to be a part of her mission. “There are so many great things about working at William & Mary.
When dance professor Leah Glenn started teaching at the College seven years ago, she was intrigued by William & Mary’s unique approach to the dance minor. “The College provides students with a variety of performance and choreographic experiences that dance minors in a traditional B.A. or B.F.A. dance program wouldn’t necessarily be able to take advantage of.”
Glenn notes the high levels of enthusiasm and motivation that characterize William & Mary students, and she enjoys sharing her “passion and knowledge of dance while cultivating greater interest in the art form with students of varying levels of experience and ability.”
Glenn’s wealth of experience is certainly extensive, as she has been working and studying in the industry for over a decade. Prior to her work at the College, Glenn served as the artistic director of Cecil Dance Theatre for 10 years, and during her time there she choreographed original modern dance works as well as reconstructing popular ballets such as The Nutcracker, The Sleeping Beauty and Coppelia. Glenn was head of dance at Hampton University for two years, where she established the first African-American chapter of the National Dance Association’s Nu Delta Alpha Honor Society. In addition to her original work and reconstructions, she also co-choreographed Journey of Destiny, the retelling of the settlement of Jamestown that was featured in Jamestown’s 400th anniversary celebration. Her choreography has been presented by the College of William & Mary, Hampton University, the Maryland School of Ballet and Modern Dance and Colonial Williamsburg. Three of her most recent works, Transcending Rhythms, Changing the Change and Before I Go, While I’m Away, When I’m Gone were presented at the 2009, 2010 and 2011 International Association for Blacks in Dance conferences. She is currently a member of Gravity Optional Dance Company.
Glenn is “excited and honored” by her recognition as an Alumni Fellowship Award winner and will continue to mentor students with a passion for dance in her upcoming ballet, modern dance and historical dance classes.
Even when he was younger, Eric Hilton loved to figure out how animals were put together. When he had to miss school, he would go to work with his mom, a professor of human anatomy, and watch her prepare cadavers for her lab.
Hilton was doing a postdoc in Chicago when he heard about a new position at William & Mary. “I saw the advertisement for the position of a comparative anatomist. Not a lot of positions have that emphasis. I would get to teach about fishes from the morphological perspective. You don’t know how long I waited for someone to say that!”
Comparative anatomy is the study of similarities and differences in the anatomy of species, long serving as evidence of evolution and helping scientists classify organisms. It’s a field that was recognized back in the 1500s, but Hilton wants people to realize that it is not a dead discipline. “We’re coming at it with a new approach, new sets of eyes, a new ability to see the world. Every time we think the field is becoming mature, advances continue to be made and it becomes new again.”
Hilton joined the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) in 2007, focusing on the anatomy of fishes. In addition to teaching classes, he is also the curator of the Ichthyology Collection at VIMS, one of the largest repositories for freshwater, Chesapeake Bay and coastal fishes in Virginia. “The job reflects the diverse interests that I have. Classical anatomy, genetics, morphological ecology, working with larval fishes; it’s all threaded together with evolution and fish biology and what it can tell us about conservation.”
Hilton is an internationally recognized expert in sturgeon anatomy and classifications, using dissection and detailed studies of a sturgeon’s skeleton, muscles and morphology to place a specimen in the correct species. Of the 25 currently recognized species of sturgeons worldwide, every one is endangered, threatened or afforded some type of legal protection. Classification of sturgeons is important so authorities can make informed conservation decisions.
“It’s important to understand the natural world in all facets,” said Hilton. “I hope my research contributes to understanding the interconnectivity of species. You can learn a lot from a dead fish.”
Drawn to William & Mary because of its unique qualities as a “public ivy,” English professor Erin Minear has greatly enjoyed her experience at the College since joining the faculty in 2010. The College’s resident Shakespeare expert, Minear relishes the opportunity to teach Shakespeare in many different forms, whether it be a broad study of the bard’s works or a closer study of his greatest literary feats. “It’s been particularly rewarding to teach a seminar that focuses on Shakespeare’s Othello — the play itself and the way audiences and critics have responded to it over the centuries. You might think that it would be hard to spend an entire semester on just one play, but the opposite is true!”
Although the focus of her teaching and research is centered around Shakespeare and other Renaissance-era authors, Minear likes to keep things interesting and branch out to teach some unique classes in the English department. “For something completely different, I’ve also greatly enjoyed teaching a class on children’s fantasy literature. We read C.S. Lewis, J.K. Rowling … that was a lot of fun.”
In the coming years at the College, Minear will teach more Shakespeare, of course, but she is planning some future classes around some of his lesser-known works. “All of these plays are fascinating, and they have a lot to show us about Shakespeare’s development and the topics that were important to him.”
Minear delights in her research as well as her time in the classroom, and she particularly appreciates how the two “reinforce and nourish each other” to create the ultimate learning experience. She continues to be thoroughly impressed by the entire William & Mary community and says the people of the College are “everything you would want them to be. The students here are fabulous — they’re very smart and excited about learning, very energetic and hardworking.”
Minear was exceptionally pleased to be recognized for her teaching abilities this year. “I’m so honored to have received this award. It was the example of my own professors, as an undergraduate, that made me want to do this job in the first place, so my teaching is very important to me.”
It may have been neutrinos that led Patricia Vahle to apply at W&M, but it was the campus that sold her. “During my first visit for the interview, I fell in love with the campus. The trees are amazing.”
Vahle’s research focuses on neutrinos, one of the fundamental constituents of matter. “As far as we know, you can’t break it open and find smaller particles inside. It’s kind of an oddball in the family of particles, though. It has no electrical charge and it doesn’t feel the strong force that holds the nuclei of atoms together. It only interacts via the very weak force that is responsible for radioactive decays of certain nuclei. Since that force is so weak, matter is largely transparent to neutrinos. A neutrino can zip right through most materials and come out the other side, leaving no trace of its passage.”
When neutrinos were first discovered, they were thought to have no mass. Just recently, scientists discovered they do have mass, but it’s really small. The fact that the next heaviest fundamental particle is the electron, which is at least 10 million times heavier, raises an interesting question. “Why is there such a large difference in the mass scales of the fundamental particles?” said Vahle. “If we hope to understand the origin, structure and evolution of the universe, we need to know all secrets the neutrinos are keeping.”
Vahle has been teaching at the College since 2007. “I’m always learning something new,” said Vahle. “It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve taught a class, I keep finding new insights. The same is true of research. Each problem forces you to learn new tools or technology. Once you solve all the problems and run the experiment, sometimes you end up with a deeper understanding of how nature works.”
Vahle is part of a group of researchers doing experiments hosted by Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Illinois. Scientists collaborate to build detectors, run the detectors, collect data and then analyze it. “The collaborations develop a hierarchical organizational structure to coordinate everyone’s efforts and make sure the experiment runs smoothly. I was the analysis coordinator for MINOS, which is one of the experiments I work on,” said Vahle. “It’s a position of leadership, overseeing the progress on all the different analyses that are going on. Having started out as a young graduate student on the experiment, it felt like an achievement to work my way up the ranks.”
That definition may change as William & Mary becomes the latest major university to found a collection devoted to hip hop.
This new collection at Swem Library focuses on Virginia’s contributions to hip hop from the 1980s to the present. Similar collections have sprung up recently at universities across the country, including Cornell University, Atlanta University Center Consortium and the University of Houston.
The College might not be the first institution that comes to mind regarding the predominantly African-American music form, but as American studies graduate student and collection architect Kevin Kosanovich explained, that actually counts as a benefit.
“We’re kind of neutral ground,” said Kosanovich, noting that the university has no allegiance to any one Virginia hip hop scene. “William & Mary has the national name recognition, but also doesn’t have a dog in the hip hop culture.”
Kosanovich first became enamored with hip hop as a pre-teen, listening to albums like Ice Cube’s “The Predator” and Dr. Dre’s “The Chronic.” Now he’s working to complete his dissertation on hip hop’s origins in the Bronx borough of New York City, including early pioneers like Zulu Nation and Afrika Bambaataa.
In researching his dissertation, Kosanovich spent a lot of time with the hip hop collection at Cornell University, which inspired him to ask university archivist Amy C. Schindler if they could attempt the same concept in Swem’s Special Collections.
“Kevin came to me and said we should do this here,” said Schindler, who serves as the acting Marian and Alan McLeod Director of the Special Collections Research Center. “No one else in Virginia was doing this, so why not us?”
According to Kosanovich, part of the reason Virginia became a breeding ground for hip hop was because of the high prevalence of military personnel in the Commonwealth. Because of the itinerant nature of servicemen and women, the ideas and concepts of hip hop culture came to Virginia faster than other places. Like hip hop from the Bronx, Virginia hip hop is dance-based, springing out of the breakdancing b-boy and neighborhood party scene.
“In a lot of ways, Virginia was the pivot on the hinge of hip hop breaking out of New York,” Kosanovich said. One of the many hip hop transplants to Virginia was legendary producer Teddy Riley. In the late 1980s and ’90s, Riley became known for his groundbreaking New Jack swing sound, a genre that he helped co-create and brought to Virginia.
The style — which was also known as swingbeat — melded elements of hip hop, funk, soul and dance music to form a genre with big danceable beats and melodic vocals. Groups like Salt ‘N’ Pepa, New Edition, MC Hammer and New Kids on the Block were all of the genre, as well as Virginia’s Blackstreet, of which Riley was both a founding member and producer.
Even after New Jack swing was no longer in vogue, hip hop and pop music from Virginia continued to be a game changer. It’s hard to imagine popular music today without the likes of artists like Timbaland, Missy Elliott and The Neptunes/N.E.R.D — all of whom hail from the Commonwealth.
The Neptunes are a powerhouse producing duo that consists of Virginia Beach natives Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo. The two have produced everyone from Snoop Dogg and Kanye West to Britney Spears and Gwen Stefani. In 2001, Williams and Hugo formed a band called N.E.R.D. with friend Shay Haley, recording a few hits of their own. Williams appeared on two of this summer’s biggest hits, Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky,” and Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines,” which he also produced. The songs peaked at the No. 2 and No. 1 spots on the US Billboard Hot 100, respectively.
Virginia Beach’s Timothy Moseley — better known as Timbaland — is as highprofile a music producer as they get. Timbaland has recorded hits for Aaliyah, Missy Elliott, Jay-Z, Nelly Furtado, Drake, Katy Perry and OneRepublic, and has produced numerous top-10 singles and multiplatinum albums. Timbaland’s production was a key part of the success of Justin Timberlake’s blockbuster album “Future- Sex/LoveSounds,” which Timbaland recorded at his Virginia Beach studio.
“Virginia is really rich with producers,” said Kosanovich. “The sound of music in America or even internationally since the 1990s is Virginia-based.”
One feature that sets William & Mary’s collection apart from similar efforts at other universities is the in-person interviews that Kosanovich has conducted with musicians, talking about their experiences with the culture in Virginia. As of press time, Kosanovich has compiled more than 60 of these oral histories, and aims to put nearly all of them online for free listening. The audio interviews are generally an hour and 15 minutes long, but range anywhere from 50 minutes to three hours in length.
With the collection, Kosanovich hopes to chronicle the entire history of hip hop culture in Virginia, including both household names and those better known locally. Virginia artists like ABYS, M$ Blendz, Sick Mike and Dynamite-J have all contributed their impressions of Virginia hip hop to the collection. One of those interviewed is second-generation rapper Antoine “Henmusik” Henderson, who moved to Virginia Beach as a teenager.
“I think it’s a great thing that William & Mary is embracing hip hop,” said Henderson. “That was just a beautiful thing for [the university] to create a platform for us.”
Kosanovich has also interviewed Melvin “Magoo” Barcliff and “Larry Live” Lyons, two rappers who frequently collaborated with Timbaland early in his career. In addition to the interviews, the collection also has some of the rapper’s early mp3s. He’s current ly working to l ine up interviews with Hugo of N.E.R.D./The Neptunes and Gene “No Malice” Thornton (formerly “Malice”), one half of the Virginia Beach hip-hop duo Clipse.
William & Mary may not have produced any well-known rappers yet, but that doesn’t mean hip hop culture hasn’t had a presence on campus. Since 2007, the College has had a chapter of the Student Hip Hop Organization, a group that promotes higher learning through hip hop. The university also has SMILES Crew, a b-boy dance club. The collection has acquired shirts, posters and other memorabilia from both groups.
Co-sponsored by the departments of music, American studies, history and Africana studies, the collection was officially launched in April. The event included a DJ and saw roughly 200 students, faculty and members of the hip-hop community turn out. Two hip-hop related documentaries were screened, including “Seven Cities Legacy,” a film exploring the history of post–World War II music in Hampton Roads. The documentary featured Henderson discussing the current generation of rappers in Virginia.
“That night was really significant for hiphop culture in Virginia,” says Henderson of the launch. “That’s something I’m going to carry with me for the rest of my life.”
As for the collection itself, Kosanovich hopes it will one day expand to include performances, panels, conferences and lectures. During the summer, Swem hired Kosanovich to upload almost all of his oral histories online. Though some might not immediately see the benefit of documenting the culture, Kosanovich says it’s just as valid as recording the history of any other American music form, and that now is perfect time to begin examining its history.
“Hip hop is 40 now,” said Kosanovich.
“It’s middle-aged,” Schindler concured.
“It’s starting to reach a respectable age to actively study.”
tall trunks and still-leafy branches spread horizontally across the forest floor, illuminated by the unobstructed sunshine beating down through the new gaps in the canopy above.
Ten years ago this fall, just as students were settling in for the semester, Hurricane Isabel barreled towards Williamsburg. By the time it reached the campus, it had slowed to a Category 1 storm, but the winds were so strong that roots of 100-year-old oak trees in Matoaka Woods couldn’t hold on and trunks came crashing down, smashing smaller dogwoods and maples in their path.
While most people saw the forest as wounded by the storm, Brendan Hodkinson ’05, saw an opportunity. Thanks to the fallen trees, he could see the lichens that typically grew high up in branches without leaving the ground. He ended up doing his honors thesis on the lichen diversity of the Matoaka Woods and discovered many never before found in Virginia.
“Lichens seemed to be this super cool, neglected group,” said Hodkinson, who now studies the diversity of microorganisms living on the human body. “I always like a challenge. I was really amazed at how well the natural setting of the region was preserved in the College Woods. That gave the woods their character to me, the diversity and the ecology.”
Hodkinson is one of many students who developed a taste for ecological research in the Matoaka Woods. (Disclaimer: so am I.) Students today are still studying the impacts of Isabel on forest rejuvenation and how disturbance creates opportunities for invasive species. But the woods aren’t just an asset for budding naturalists, they also serve as a quiet place to think, a respite from busy campus life, a challenging place to run, an inspiration for art projects, even a space to covertly camp out.
In 1925, the College bought Lake Matoaka and the surrounding 500 acres of woods. More than 10 miles of trails twist and turn through the canopy of oaks, tulip poplars, beach and loblolly pine. It’s not old-growth forest exactly; much of the original woods were cleared and cultivated until about 1850, but in the years since the forest has grown up into a diverse and healthy community.
The woods drew Martha Case to the campus 19 years ago — a botany professor, she couldn’t pass up an opportunity to teach at a university where she could continue her research on relatively rare lady slipper orchids with just a short stroll from her office.
“You need plants to teach plant diversity,” Case said. “I saw this as a perfect place to research and teach.”
Without the woods on campus, Case said that many of her student’s research projects would have been impossible. Pollination studies require monitoring blooming orchids from dawn to dusk, with students on shifts running back and forth from the woods to classes.
“That was really intense. There’s no way that could happen anywhere else,” Case said. “The students have to go to class, but the orchids keep blooming anyway.”
Zach Bradford ’08 was one of those students, practically living in the woods to get the data. “I think it was a launching off point,” said Bradford, now an environmental consultant. “I knew I wanted to pursue field ecology, so it helped me learn what you could do with biological research.”
Beyond his research, Bradford enjoyed hanging out in the woods — going for runs and taking friends exploring in the ravines. “There’s always something healthy about being out with big trees,” he said.
Bradford said that he didn’t run into many other people enjoying the woods, but he did occasionally stumble across illicit campsites — sleeping bags and fire pits and no one around to claim them.
They may have belonged to a couple of friends who camped out for a summer semester to save money on rent, said a 2008 grad who preferred not to give her name. She spent many weekends camping out in the College Woods — packing backpacks full of camping gear and beer. No tents. They would bring guitars and stay up most of the night playing music.
“You sort of felt like you were getting away with something,” she said. It was a change from the campus party scene, a space to play music and hang out. Even though she had never been camping before, she caught the enthusiasm from some friends who knew they needed to break out of the dorms and spend some time in nature. Navigating to their favorite spots in the dark, Friday night forest was a bit of an adventure — one of their landmarks was a giant tree that fell over a creek and acted as a bridge if you had good balance.
“You just had all of this space and you felt a bit freer,” she said. “It’s so beautiful back there. I don’t think people who go to William & Mary get how much room we have out there.”
One group of students who take advantage of all that space in the woods is the running club. Micheal Trotta ’14, a senior and team leader, said that they hit the 46 FALL 2013 WILLIAM & MARY trails at least once a week for training runs. Personally, he said that the trails are a big part of feeling at home on campus.
“The first thing I do when I get back to campus is go for a run in the woods,” Trotta said.
For runners, the trails are pretty, cool and shady beneath the dense canopy of green, or gold (and red too) as the summer fades to fall. In addition, Trotta said, the softer surface means lower joint impacts. But research by geology major Ryan McKinney ’02 showed that while the trails are low impact for runners, runners and hikers and bikers are hard on the trails. The fitness trail, which runs along the campus side of Lake Matoaka, gets four times the traffic and shows significantly more degradation.
There’s far more solitude to be found across the lake, but human activities are still changing even the more remote portions of the woods. A non-native grass, Microstegium, is spreading, crowding out native species. Development of surrounding areas has cut down on deer habitat, leaving the woods to be a refuge for a growing, hungry population.
“One of my orchid sites went from 200 blooms down to six in just a few years,” Case said. “Within days, an entire population can be eaten.”
Facing increased pressure from deer, development, invasive species and a changing climate, Case said that the Matoaka Woods is a sample point of the problems facing natural landscapes across the globe. On the positive side, these changes do offer more opportunities for research. Case sees the College’s continued support for protecting the woods and the lake as a sign that the community believes in conservation.
“It’s vital for the mission of the university in teaching and research,” Case said. “But it’s not just a laboratory, it’s also there as a symbol.”
In 1952, Jack Freeman ’44 and his wife, Jane, spent their entire life savings to move from Pennsylvania to Williamsburg so Freeman could be the new head football coach at William & Mary. It was a job few people wanted. In the summer of 1951, the athletic director, football and basketball coaches, and the school president had resigned.
Rene Henry ’54, who would become the sports information director as a senior in 1953, said the athletics program changed that year. “The desire from faculty was to deemphasize not only football, but all sports,” Henry said. “Scholarships were cut back by the time Jack Freeman was named head football coach.”
Then in January of 1952, 30 students were expelled for misconduct (eight of whom were football players). Nearly half of the remaining players transferred. “Some who played freshman football or as sophomores and lost scholarships after the athletic program changed in 1951 were frustrated and never walked on,” said Henry. “Some of those players would’ve been a tremendous help in 1953.”
Charlie Sumner ’55 was a sophomore on the 1953 team. “We had to play, no matter what. We couldn’t feel sorry for ourselves, (l to r) Backfield Coach Eric Tipton ’37 and Head Coach Jackie Freeman ’44 talk with Al Grieco ’56, Charlie Sumner ’55 and Bob Elzey ’55 about the quarterback position. because no one else was going to. When you’re cornered, you do the best with what you have. There’s no other choice.” What they had was 14 returning lettermen and a total squad of 24, including John Risjord ’55, a track athlete who had never played football.
“I didn’t even know how to get in a three-point stance,” Risjord said. When he was knocked out during light contact drills, Freeman later told a reporter for the Richmond Times-Dispatch that he was knocked “stiffer than a board.” A teammate helped Rijord to his feet and said, “Welcome to varsity, Walk-on.”
Despite lacking in depth, the Indians found the small number of players assisted in the development of team chemistry. “We were all in it together,” said Sumner. “We knew what we could do.”
“We really cared for each other,” said Bill Marfizo ’56, a sophomore on the 1953 team. “No one was out for themselves. We had a sense of pride and wanted to do well because we loved William & Mary.”
And there were new NCAA rules that would work to William & Mary’s advantage. College football returned to the oneplatoon rule, with athletes playing on both offense and defense. The oneplatoon system limited substitution and off-set the lack of depth on the Indians’ team. With a smaller group, coaches were able to spend more time with athletes individually and players were able to adapt quickly to playing offense and defense. Freeman and his coaching staff shied away from hard contact practices, fearing injuries. “Hard contact was saved for the weekend,” said Marfizo. Practices were focused on conditioning each player to play 60 minutes of full-speed football.
Preseason forecasters had predicted only two wins for the Indians. But although they had a squad of just 24 players, as one opposing coach said, “They had 24 PLAYERS.”
The Indians shocked everyone, going 5-1-1 in their first seven games. In their season-opener against Wake Forest, they snatched a third-quarter lead and made it stand up, beating the Demon Deacons 16-14. According to Flat Hat sportswriter Dick Rowlett ’56, Wake’s receivers were hit so hard that “at the finish they were watching the tacklers more than they were the ball.”
Going into the Navy game, the Indians were a two-touchdown underdog, facing a team that was ranked No. 1 in the East. Navy football greeted the visiting team with a, “Who’s he?” as each opposing player was introduced. After the game, the Middies were sure to remember at least one Indian player. Marfizo was dubbed Mr. Versatility by many Southern sports writers after playing seven different positions.
“First it was guard, then center, then linebacker and so on,” said Marfizo. “I remember Coach Freeman walking up and down the line and he kept saying, ‘Bill, can you do this?’” Marfizo also made a brave blocking attempt of Navy’s final punt that earned him a collision with a Navy player’s cleats and several lost teeth.
The Indians held in there with the Middies, deadlocking 6-6. It was after the Navy game that writers began calling the team the “Iron Indians.”
The Cincinnati Bearcats handed the team a loss that was the worst for an Indian 11 in 30 years, with a final score of 57-7, but an open weekend before the Virginia Tech game allowed the Indians the chance to recover and the “Upset Express” won their next three games.
“I think it was the underdog thing that kept us motivated,” said Marfizo. “It was a team spirit that I’ve never seen before. When you’re down like that, you reach down deep and pull something up. And we were not only teammates, we were friends. When you go through things like that together, you form a bond.”
In the first seven games, 13 men played the entire 60 minutes without replacement. Three players did it three times apiece. In the game against Virginia Tech, Marfizo played a full three and a half quarters before being carried off the field unconscious from a blow to the neck.
But toward the end of the season the fighting two dozen began to show signs of hard-fought battles. Injuries took their toll and with no reserves, the Iron Indians began to buckle, losing three of their last four games. A VMI touchdown in the last 58 seconds gave the Indians their second loss of the season. The upset wrecked the Tribe’s bid for the Big Six crown, the Southern Conference Championship and a possible bowl bid. The Indians clobbered Richmond 21-0, but the following week the Generals from Washington and Lee turned the game into a rout in the span of eight minutes in the third quarter. Boston University, with a hard-charging line, explosive backfield and the most depth the Indians had seen all year, handed the Iron Indians their final loss of the season.
The Indians finished the year 5-4-1. Four players made the All-Big Six Team, the most from any one team. Jack Freeman was named coach of the year in Virginia. After the season the William & Mary community came out to honor the team at a special ceremony at Phi Beta Kappa Hall.
“I consider this team one of the most remarkable in modern football,” said Henry. “I doubt if any other coach would have taken the challenge Jack Freeman and the Iron Indians did in 1953.”
There was a moment during the game against Navy when kicker Quinby Hines missed booting extra points because of a poor pass from center and tried to take it across the goal line himself — all 137 pounds of him. It was just one of those moments the Indians refused to say die, just one of the countless instances during that 1953 season when William & Mary’s football team pushed the limits of human endurance. “It was a time we came together under difficult circumstances,” said Marfizo. “It made things very memorable. I’ve never felt a greater sense of pride.”
The Board of Directors is responsible for developing policy and steering the course of the Alumni Association. All alumni are eligible to participate in Alumni Association elections. Go online now to vote; you can choose up to three of the following six candidates. Also, this year’s ballot contains proposed changes to the Alumni Association’s bylaws (see p. 54). The board recommends voting “yes” to the changes.
Following careful and purposeful deliberations, the nominating committee of the Board of Directors submits the following candidates for consideration for election to the Board. Elected members will begin their 4-year terms at the spring meeting of the Board. Members concluding their terms at that meeting are Barbara Cole Joynes ’82; Martha McGlothlin Gayle ’89, J.D. ’95; R. Edwin Burnette Jr. ’75, J.D. ’78; and Timothy J. Mulvaney ’91.
Online voting saves the Association over $40,000. However, if you still require a paper ballot, call 757.221.7855 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to request one and it will be mailed to you. Voting closes on Nov. 5, 2013 at midnight.
Bowen spent her professional life in Virginia government and with business, civic and advocacy organizations. She last served as secretary of administration in the cabinet of Gov. (now senator) Mark Warner, after which she did some consulting with a law firm before retiring to focus on her grandchildren and to volunteer with several community boards. She was previously senior vice president of the Virginia Chamber of Commerce, secretary of the commonwealth of Virginia and special assistant to a previous Virginia governor. She has an interest in public policy, its development and implementation, and its impact on the economy, education and our quality of life. She holds a master’s degree in political science from the University of Richmond. Bowen is frequently on campus for athletic events and other important occasions in the life of the College. She served as co-chair for the Class of 1963’s 50th Reunion.
I have a love affair with all things William & Mary and am grateful for the path that led me here. I relish any opportunity to champion our alma mater and would hope my experience could be put to good use on behalf of the crown jewel of Virginia’s public universities.
Bunch is an attorney at Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC where he litigates securities class actions on behalf of defrauded investors. He is also actively involved in several nonprofit endeavors. He is the founder and chairman of the Global Playground Inc., a nonprofit that builds schools for underprivileged children in developing countries. Bunch is founder and member of the board of directors of Ascanius: The Youth Classics Institute, which promotes the study of Latin and the classics in elementary school. He is also a former member of the board of directors of the Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. A member of Phi Beta Kappa, Bunch graduated summa cum laude from the College and in 2011, received the inaugural W. Taylor Reveley Award from the Law School for his outstanding commitment to public service.
William & Mary faces exciting challenges ahead. As alumni it is critical that we respond to them. William & Mary’s students should be the ones leading social change, the ones transforming the workplace and the ones breaking international barriers. Our job, as alumni, is to reach out to William & Mary’s students, open the door to these opportunities and give them resources — financial and otherwise — so they become the very best they can be.
After graduation, Kurland worked as a research assistant in oncogenic and viral science R&D in Washington, D.C. Upon moving to Chicago, she joined American Hospital Supply as a project manager in surgical suite product development, then switched careers in the 1990s to the fitness industry, ultimately managing a health club. Now retired, her time is spent between Chicago and a summer cottage in northern Michigan. She is currently the chair of the W&M Giving Societies and the Class Reporter for the Class of 1975. She served on the W&M Foundation Board and was co-chair for ’75’s 30th Reunion and served on her 35th Reunion committee. While at W&M, she was a member of Pi Beta Phi sorority and served as its president her senior year.
I have witnessed William & Mary’s transformation from the excellent university of my student years to a truly world-class institution today with unparalleled students, faculty and staff. Serving on the Alumni Association Board of Directors would provide a further opportunity to continue my committed support and stewardship of this incomparable college.
Lewis serves as the chief executive officer of Generation Hope, an organization that she founded in 2010. After completing college as a teen mother, she wanted to help other teen parents earn their college degrees and achieve successful futures. Prior to founding Generation Hope, Lewis worked with other nonprofit organizations dedicated to youth and poverty. She is a nationally known author and speaker on topics such as teen pregnancy and parenting, youth development, goal achievement and self-empowerment. She has been honored by several organizations, including Women in Government and Zonta. Lewis holds a master’s degree in social policy and communication from George Mason University. She was named the 2013 Distinguished Alumna by George Mason University’s School of Public Policy for her innovative work with youth.
William & Mary provided me with a stellar education and allowed me to be a part of a wonderful community that is dedicated to improving our world in a variety of ways. I am committed to ensuring that the spirit of excellence that defines William & Mary not only continues but thrives by fully supporting current and future students and strengthening alumni traditions.
Pulley is vice president and associate general counsel for Verizon Communications where she is responsible for representing all of Verizon’s business units on state regulatory matters nationwide. Before joining Verizon, Lydia was in private practice in Washington, D.C. Pulley began her legal career as a clerk to a judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. Pulley has served on the boards of the Science Museum of Virginia Foundation, Richmond Montessori School and the YMCA of Greater Richmond. She was also a member of the Virginia Business Council and president of the Virginia Telecommunications Industry Association. Pulley was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, president of her sorority Kappa Kappa Gamma, and a student liaison to the Board of Visitors. She attended the University of Virginia for law school, graduating as a member of the Order of the Coif. Lydia and her husband Rodney Willett ’85, J.D. ’90, have three children.
William & Mary continues to be an important part of my life. Since the early 1990s, my family and I have supported an endowment that enables students to do public service work during their summers locally and around the world. Meeting and interacting with those ambitious but service-focused students has inspired me to want to continue to help the College in any way that I can and to show others the benefits of staying connected to W&M.
Scott is portfolio manager and EVP at Closed-End Fund Advisors, a registered investment advisory firm, and is recognized as one of the leading experts on closed-end funds in the United States. He has been on the W&M Richmond Alumni Chapter Board for over 12 years, serving as co-president and membership chair. In 2007 he founded the 96-06 Tent at Homecoming, giving alumni a place to meet before and during the football game. He is active with the Mason School of Business and the Tribe Club. Scott served on his 10-year gift committee and has attended every Homecoming since he graduated (except when his daughter was born). As a student, Scott was elected class treasurer and executive-at-large representative. He was active in Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Sigma Mu Sigma and founded the Cleftomaniacs, an a cappella group still successful on campus.
I loved my time at W&M. The people and experiences I was exposed to while there has been a driving force in my life and career. I hope to take what I have learned at the local level and help connect alumni of all ages, interests and geography with W&M on the national level.
Dear Alumni Association Members,
The Board of Directors seeks your support on a proposal that would amend the electoral process for individuals willing to serve on the Board of Directors. The proposal will change our current governance practice from a popular electoral format where two candidates are nominated for each vacancy to be filled on the Board to a system where a single slate of candidates consisting of one candidate for each vacancy to be filled on the Board would be presented to the Membership for approval by annual vote. Members still have the right to nominate candidates for consideration by the nominations committee and still retain the right to petition for a spot on the ballot. We believe that this new process will help ensure that we can continue to attract the best possible volunteer leaders to serve on behalf of the Alumni Association.
Why change to a slate selection?
It is important to understand the reasons we believe this change is necessary. Over the years, it has been increasingly difficult to persuade qualified individuals to run for election to the Alumni Board. When asked to serve, many qualified nominees often refuse citing the election process as the primary reason. Members are uncomfortable with having to compete with other Members to take a position on a volunteer Board. Candidates who run for the Board and are not elected are often unwilling to volunteer again.
Also, the success and influence of the Association depends largely on the talents of the individual directors serving on the Board. In a popular election format, it is difficult to recruit for critical skills when the outcome of the election is uncertain. We often need the expertise of financial analysts, marketing professionals, attorneys and other professionals to help lead the Association. In order to address these governance concerns, Alumni Associations have been moving to either a board-appointed or an electoral slate process as a best practice, the model that almost every successful business uses in nominating their board members.
How will the slate process work?
The current nominating processes will not change. The nominating committee, designated by the President of the Board, and whose composition is delineated in the bylaws, will still accept nominations from all Members, the committee itself, and members of the College community. They will seek candidates that have specific skill sets beneficial to the organization and will take into consideration experience and prior committee service among other qualities. One nominee will be selected for each open Board position. If a Member or group of Members would like to secure a candidate for the ballot, they may do so by supplying a name to the Nominating Committee along with a petition of support signed by at least 300 members. Assuming the petition candidate is willing to serve on the Board, that candidate will be added to the ballot and the election will move forward as a popular election with the candidates receiving the highest number of votes being selected to serve on the Board.
What are the next steps?
The Bylaws Committee of the Board drafted revisions to the Bylaws to reflect the proposed changes. The recommended changes for approval are cited below. A complete version of the bylaws with recommended changes is available at www.wmalumni.com/bylaws_amended.
Article VI. SECTION I.
As Reads: The voting membership of the Board of Directors shall be composed of at least sixteen (16) members, three (3) of whom are elected annually by the membership of the Association, and one (1) who is appointed annually by the Board, as well as the Immediate Past President of the Association as set forth herein.
As Amended: The voting membership of the Board of Directors shall be composed of at least twelve (12) but no more than sixteen (16) members, as well as the Immediate Past President of the Association as set forth herein.
[Reasoning: allows for possibility that a slated member does not get a majority vote]
Article VII. SECTION I(b).
As Reads: The Nominations Committee shall confer and consider all names which have been suggested and shall nominate six (6) persons each year, and shall certify the nominees to the editor of the Association’s magazine in sufficient time for publication in the spring/summer issue of the Association’s magazine.
As Amended: The Nominations Committee shall confer and consider all names team have been suggested. The committee shall select a slate of nominees to serve on the Board of Directors, the total number of which shall be equal to the number of upcoming vacancies. The committee will certify the nominees to the editor of the Association’s magazine in sufficient time for publication in the fall issue of the Association’s magazine.
[Reasoning: the nominating committee puts forth nominees for only the number of vacancies on the board for that election year.]
Article VII. SECTION I(g).
As Reads: A plurality of votes cast shall determine the three (3) newly elected members, subject to such qualifications as may be stipulated in Article VI pertaining to the composition of the Board of Directors.
As Amended: A majority of votes cast shall determine the newly elected members except for cases where the total number of candidates on a ballot exceeds the number of upcoming vacancies, e.g., due to petition, then a plurality of votes cast shall determine the newly elected members subject to such qualifications as may be stipulated in Article VI pertaining to the composition of the Board of Directors.
[Reasoning: Under the slate, each nominee needs a simple majority of the votes cast to be elected. However, if there are more nominees than vacancies, the plurality method comes into effect, i.e., count most votes to least votes until vacancies filled.]
As I predicted in my last letter, W&M Alumni Spirit is growing bigger ... and wider! This summer, W&M alumni came together across the country and the world to show their Tribe Pride. Also, W&M alumni chapters showed students and parents that being a member of their Tribe is a lifelong and local experience. In addition, several regions are taking steps to revitalize their chapters or start new ones. At the Alumni House, the alumni engagement department is forming more and more partnerships with campus departments like the Office of Parent & Family Programs, Tribe Club, University Development and the Cohen Career Center to explore and offer exciting programming and events for W&M alumni.
I was honored to assist in and experience this wonderful growth throughout the summer. In July, I traveled to Jacksonville, Fla., for the W&M North Florida Alumni Chapter incoming students reception where I met Ashleigh Arrington ’17, who impressed me with her determination and graciousness. For chapter liaisons in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Raleigh, I crafted agendas to help run organizational meetings to revive chapters. I have formed lasting friendships and partnerships with campus departments that have brought record numbers of incoming students and families to recent receptions, provided our chapters with opportunities to participate in sporting events and golf tournaments, and given our office access to engaging international alumni. I will close the summer by traveling to London to greet W&M U.K. and Europe alumni at a reception celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Reves Center for International Studies and the 600th anniversary of William & Mary’s joint-degree partner, the University of St Andrews.
What predictions do I have for W&M Alumni Spirit in the fall of 2013? Oyster roasts, Alumni Chapter Weekend, constituent group Homecoming events, Tribe game watches, Yule Logs, new alumni chapter organizational meetings and so much more.
Keep posted for more info on the revival of the Atlanta Alumni Chapter!
The Boston Alumni Chapter kicked off their summer with a picnic and concert at the Hatch Shell. Alumni enjoyed the music of the Landmarks Orchestra while overlooking the beautiful Charles River. In August, the chapter welcomed the newest members of the Tribe at their incoming student reception. The event, held at Regina Pizzeria in Allston, Mass., allowed chapter members to meet the Class of 2017 and their parents, and wish them luck in their first year of studies.
In August, the Charleston Alumni Chapter enjoyed their annual nine-inning vacation to the Riverdogs Stadium! Local alumni watched the game from the Sky Suite, provided to the chapter by Piggly Wiggly. The chapter also welcomed the WMAA Executive Vice President, Karen Cottrell ’66, M.Ed ’69, Ed.D. ’84, and an incoming freshman, Katie Nutley ’17, who will be starting at St Andrews in the Joint Degree Program this fall. Katie is the daughter of the chapter's vice president, Ashley Steele Nutley ’84.
The Charlotte Alumni Chapter kicked off the fall with a night at the bowling lanes in early September. Chapter members gathered for a night of fun, friends and Tribe Pride.
The chapter gathered together in September for an afternoon at the King Family Vineyards, where they spent time with fellow W&M alumni, watched the ponies during a polo match, and sampled King Family wines.
The Chicago Alumni Chapter coordinated an event to welcome the incoming freshman class. Michael and Patricia Nelson, parents of Cooper Nelson ’16, graciously hosted this event. The director of the W&M Parents and Family Counci l , Stacey Summerf ield ’04, attended to answer any lingering questions from the newest members of the Tribe and their families.
Colorado continued their monthly Tribe Thursday tradition, giving local alumni the opportunity to come out and enjoy some Tribe Pride in the Mile High City.
This July, W&M alumni from the Gold Coast came together for a Virginia Schools mid-summer happy hour to socialize and network with alumni from fellow Virginia schools.
In July, Nini M.A.Ed. ’94, Ed.S. ’94 and Marc J.D. ’91 Forino graciously hosted a reception for W&M alumni living in Hong Kong, and W&M employees traveling to Hong Kong and China: Linda Espahbodi , di re c tor, mas te r of accounting at Mason School of Business; Ma Lei, Chinese deputy director, Confucius Institute; David Lapinski M.Ed. ’07, senior associate director, Cohen Career Center; and Sani Silvennoinen, director of major gifts, University Development.
The Lower Northern Neck Alumni Chapter hosted their annual summer picnic at the Deltaville Maritime Museum in July. More than 80 W&M alumni, friends and families came together to show their Tribe Pride and welcome the Class of 2017 and their parents to the W&M family.
This September, the Lower Peninsula Alumni Chapter hosted their annual oyster roast, where area alumni enjoyed a great time and delicious food.
After the spectacular alumni regional event at Poplar Forest, local alumni continued the momentum and gathered at Shoemakers American Grille with Kelly S. Holdcraft, director of alumni engagement. Alumni enjoyed a beautiful evening outdoors and discussed next steps in reviving the W&M Lynchburg Alumni Chapter.
W&M alumni came out with their families to cheer on the Nashville Sounds at the second alumni event in the Nashville, Tenn., area.
Alumni in the Big Easy had their inaugural happy hour at Finn McCool’s this August. The turnout was so great that the group is already looking forward to future events.
W&M alumni have a great sense of humor and the New York City Alumni Chapter got to experience it first hand at their comedy event in July at the Peoples Improv Theater. The evening’s performers were Dan Hodapp ’03, Jenny Hagel ’98 and Michelle Wolf ’03. This September, the chapter will kick off the school year with a happy hour sponsored by Bulldog Gin, a gin distillery founded by W&M alumnus Anshuman Vohra ’00.
Members of North Florida Alumni Chapter tested their trivia knowledge and competed against alumni from other Virginia schools for bragging rights at a trivia night in July. While the Tribe team trailed throughout the competition, they pulled out a thirdplace finish by answering a string of questions correctly near the end of the game. In early August, chapter members came together at the home of Rick ’73 and Ann Hartje to celebrate the incoming students who will head to the ’Burg to start their freshman year.
At the urging of Jim ’63 and Karen Gudinas ’62, Kelly S. Holdcraft, director of alumni engagement , visi ted Orlando and hosted a Tribe Thursday. To her great delight, she found a wonderful group of enthusiastic alumni who are ready to create their own Tribe in the area. Be on the lookout for the W&M Orlando Alumni Chapter in the near future!
In August, the W&M Philadelphia Alumni Chapter hosted an organizational meeting to recruit new leadership and plan exciting events for local alumni.
The Richmond Alumni Chapter kicked off July with their monthly first tables, held at the Country Club of Petersburg. In August, the Richmond Alumni Chapter partnered with the Tribe Club for a picnic and baseball extravaganza. Alumni and their families met W&M baseball coach Jamie Pinzino and spent time mingling with the Griffin. After the picnic, the group cheered on Coach Pinzino as he threw out the first pitch for the Flying Squirrels baseball game.
Alumni in the Roanoke Alumni Chapter came together in early August at the home of Todd ’86 and Whitney Leeson ’87 to celebrate incoming freshmen before they headed to campus this fall. Joined by John Kane, assistant vice president and director of alumni records, William & Mary Alumni Association, the group enjoyed an evening of fellowship and Tribe Pride.
W&M alumni in the Emerald City joined alumni from other Virginia schools for a mixer in early September, where they could reconnect and meet some new friends from the Commonwealth.
Overlooking the Chesapeake Bay, more than 120 alumni, incoming students and family members came together for the South Hampton Roads Alumni Chapter’s incoming students reception. Professor Clay Clemmons ’80 gave the new freshman a taste of W&M classes, as he presented his tips and tricks to navigating freshman year at the College. A panel of current students assuaged the nerves of both new parents and students as they answered questions from the audience about life on campus.
St. Louis alumni gathered for the second time in August to cheer on the St. Louis Cardinals as they took on the Atlanta Braves. It was a great evening of baseball and Tribe Pride!
The Triangle Alumni Chapter is gaining momentum toward becoming an act ive alumni chapter again! This August, the group will meet for their first organizational meeting to discuss future leadership of the chapter, and plan their October visit to the North Carolina Museum of History for a Collector’s Tour of the Tsars’ Cabinet exhibit, given by Kathleen Durdin ’77.
In September, the College hosted a reception for W&M alumni in the U.K. and Europe at Drapers’ Hall in London. Steve Hanson, vice provost for international affairs and director of the Reves Center for International Studies, was the featured speaker. This event celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Reves Center and the 600th anniversary of W&M’s joint-degree partner, the University of St Andrews.
The largest W&M alumni chapter, the Greate r Me t ro Washington, D.C. , Alumni Chapter, has been busy this summer. Starting in early July, the group visited the National Zoo for Brew at the Zoo, whe re alumni enjoyed craft beers and the musical of fer ings of Gonzo’s Nose, a band founded by four W&M alumni. Later in July, the chapter enjoyed a picnic, while watching the matches in the moonlight out in Virginia’s horse country for twilight polo at Great Meadows. In early August , the chapter attended a concert at the Filene Center at Wolf Trap where they listened to bands that took them straight back to the ’90s. Other events hosted by the chapter this summer included Jazz in the Garden, Screen on the Green and GMWDC Goes to Nats Park. In September, chapter volunteers welcomed WWII and Korean War veterans as they arrived in Washington, D.C. via the Honor Flight Network to see their memorials for the very first time.
In July, the Williamsburg Alumni Chapter hosted a reception prior to attending the Virginia Shakespeare Festival’s “Richard III.” During the reception, alumni enjoyed light refreshments from MAD about Chocolate, a local Williamsburg favorite owned by Marcel HON ’01 and Connie Desaulniers ’75. In August, the chapter welcomed Tribe Thursday special guests from the staff of the Reves Center for International Studies, including Sylvia Mitterndorfer ’96, director of global education.
During my relatively brief time here at William & Mary and the Alumni Association, one of the many things that’s never failed to impress me is the caliber of people who represent the College.
Although I did not hail from William & Mary (but instead from a former W&M division to the south), the alumni, staff and students welcomed me with open arms, making me a part of this One Tribe. This wonderful family.
No institution can be at its best without people who believe in its success. Living, breathing human beings who embody the ideals, passion and gumption that make up the institution; folks who are willing to stand behind it and make it stronger than it was before.
Everyday I have been surrounded by colleagues who are passionate about their trade, the people they are serving and the brand that they stand behind. I have been a witness to the work ethic and drive that this awesome team brings to the table, encouraging me to be better in every way that “better” can mean. They are truly an inspiration and some of the best in their field.
To enjoy the work you do and the people you do the work with … now that, in the words of our beloved President Reveley, is a dynamite combination. I am truly blessed to have had this time here, and I look forward to seeing what this talented team creates in the future.
It’s been a delight and an honor to have my name on the masthead in the company of people whom I truly respect. It is with a heavy yet optimistic heart that I bid farewell to this great institution that gave me my first full-time job, an incredible amount of professional experience and great friends and colleagues. I’ll see you soon.
Assistant Director of Alumni Communications
Executive Vice President: Karen R. Cottrell ’66, M.Ed. ’69, Ed.D. ’84
Editor: Mitch Vander Vorst
Art Director/Graphic Designer: Michael D. Bartolotta
Graphic Designer: Megan M. Morrow
Online Editor: Del Putnam
Copy Editor: Sara Piccini
Interns: Ashley Chaney ’14, Neil Friedman ’14
Contributing Photographers: Chris Bergin, Steven Biver, Bo Dong, Bob Keroack ’79, Joseph McClain, Mark Mitchell, Jamie Parker, Lee Poe, Skip Rowland ’83, Stephen Salpukas, Suppamas Sawatyanon M.B.A. ’11
Contributing Writers: Shannon Crawford ’13, Rich Griset, Joseph McClain, Kate Prengaman ’07, W. Taylor Reveley III, John T. Wallace, Bonnie V. Winston, Erin Zagursky
Illustrators: Steven Chorney, Rachel Follis ’11
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As he sits on the patio of the Williamsburg Inn on a beautiful spring day, Robert Clay ’68 takes account of his life since graduating from William & Mary: one wedding in the Wren Chapel to classmate Blythe Baldwin ‘68, one tour in the Navy, three years at Harvard Business School, two children, five grandchildren — and four Kentucky Derby winners.
As he thinks back over the roughly four decades he has spent building Three Chimneys Farm, one of the premier thoroughbred breeding programs in the world, Clay remarked, “It’s been a fun ride.”
Although he wrote his senior thesis on economics of the thoroughbred business, Clay’s venture into horse breeding didn’t begin until later. After commencement and an August wedding, Clay and his bride returned to his Kentucky home where he continued studying business. Their honeymoon phase was interrupted by a Vietnam War draft card, but upon his return, Clay’s equestrian enterprising began in the fertilizer business.
After completing the Executive Education program at Harvard, Clay decided he was ready for a career change, turning his attention towards the track. He sold the fertilizer company, and bought Three Chimneys’ first stallion in 1984. The very next year, the farm acquired Seattle Slew — the only horse in history to go undefeated during his campaign for the Triple Crown. Three Chimneys Farm had officially arrived on the thoroughbred breeding scene.
In the years that followed, Three Chimneys’ stallion roster expanded. With invaluable support from co-owner Blythe, and later help from his son Case, Clay’s paddocks grew to hold roughly 250 mares, who foal nearly 200 could-be-derby-winners every spring. Racing legends like Smarty Jones (2004 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner), Point Given (2001 Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes winner) and Silver Charm (1997 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner) have been under Clay’s care. Big Brown (2008 Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner) and Flower Alley, sire of last year’s Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner I’ll Have Another, are currently available for stud at Three Chimneys — for a five-figure fee.
However, Clay’s business isn’t solely focused on the storied horses he houses. In the last few decades, Three Chimneys has made strides to stay connected to the human element of the racing world as well. Every year, 20,000 visitors tour the grounds, and the crowds flock to see past winners every time Derby weekend comes around.
The farm is heavily involved with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and sponsors benefit races for the nonprofit organization and plans visits for many children facing life-threatening illnesses. In 2008, ESPN featured the farm and a young visitor named Patrick Munro as part of their “My Wish” series. Although his blindness prevented him from actually seeing the horses he loved, Patrick’s dream to touch his favorite athlete, Smarty Jones, was fulfilled.
“The horse somehow knew he was there and stood like a statue,” Clay remembered. As they turned the horse out to the pasture together, Smarty Jones raced off into the field, and Patrick smiled as he heard the pounding hoof beats at full gallop.
For Clay, his wife and all those who are a part of Three Chimneys, their mission has always been to “raise the best horses and serve the best clients in the world.” Every year he returns to the annual challenge of raising the next crop of colts and fillies, ignited by the “eternal hope” that they will one day win the Run for the Roses.
As he thinks forward to the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby, still almost a month away on that early April morning, Clay mused, “It’s too early to tell” who will be the favorite. However, two things are certain: he’ll root for competitors that can trace their lineages back to his barn, and he’ll be looking to pick up the next superstar — “If you win the Derby, I’m knocking on your door.”
B.A., Florida International University
M.A., University of Georgia
J.D., Florida A&M University
What drew you to William & Mary?
So many things. How the College, especially as a public institution, sets a high regard for public education, in terms of higher education and in terms of how it serves its students. How the College has a commitment to its students. We’re preparing citizens who can maneuver through the world and that’s pretty important. Usually deans of students handle discipline. Here we handle how to make students successful and hold students accountable. It’s not a typical model. And that’s what attracted me to this job. It’s also just a gorgeous place. That doesn’t hurt either.
How's life in the King's Town?
It’s been amazing. Having moved from another historic city (Charleston, S.C.), I feel this is a place that I’ll get to meet some really good people. I’m really excited about getting more connected and engaged in the community at large.
If you could travel anywhere in the world,
where would you go?
I would go to Tasmania, off the southern coast of Australia. It’s just a beautiful island with a beautiful history. I didn’t realize how much environmental issues and sustainability were important until I went there. The food was amazing. And so fresh. They don’t use pesticides on anything. All their animals are fed naturally. You can definitely tell the difference.
What are you most excited about for the fall?
I’m excited that the students are back and I’m going to get a chance to get to know them. To show them what we’re doing here and to know our community. That’s integral to us. You can’t get to know this campus without knowing the students.
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