Lauren Bradley Chapelle ’08
Based in Arizona, Lauren Bradley Chapelle ’08 started her own private firefighting company, Sabino Fire, in 2021, which helps fight fires in the West each season.
Lauren Bradley Chapelle ’08
Based in Arizona, Lauren Bradley Chapelle ’08 started her own private firefighting company, Sabino Fire, in 2021, which helps fight fires in the West each season.
Laura Thornton ’88
Laura Thornton ’88 is senior vice president for democracy at the German Marshall Fund, securing election rights and fighting malign influence operations, and supporting civil society organizations around the world.
Gian Basili ’83
As the deputy state supervisor, Florida, for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Gian Basili ’83 is working toward conservation with its challenges and successes.
Brynne McNulty ’06
Brynne McNulty’s innovative proptech business, Habi, is helping to streamline residential home buying in Colombia and Mexico.
Reed Shapiro ’10
Read about Reed Shapiro’s work as business development manager for South Pole, the global leader in the fight to reduce emissions.
Andrew Pearson ’91
As chief medical officer of the nonprofit The Jewish Board, Andrew Pearson ’91 holds one of the most influential medical positions in New York City where he has become a leading voice on hot-button issues like adult and child mental health, homelessness, addiction, and trauma.
Jeff Magnin ’74
Jeff Magnin ’74 spent nearly two decades as an English professor. In 2021, he continued his commitment to education and service, becoming a volunteer instructor at Mount Tamalpais College, a small liberal arts college housed within San Quentin Prison.
Elaine Meyer ’75
For Elaine Meyer ’75, a clinical psychologist, nurse, and bioethicist, her TED Talk led to speaking engagements and collaborations across the globe. Meyer’s work emphasizes patient/family perspectives and priorities, end-of-life care, challenging conversations in health care, and simulation education.
Mike Roos ’05
Mike Roos ’05 is committed to facing the challenges of climate change and making a difference. He is policy advisor for the City of Seattle’s Office of Sustainability and Environment, after having worked for Seattle’s Sound Transit.
After being awarded a Joel Gay Creative Fellowship, artist and designer Elspeth Michaels '05 created The Drip, a weekly newsletter that explores the intersection between art history and hip-hop.
Tech guru by day, vintner by night: Tom Cramer ’83 is co-owner of Altisima Winery, which he opened in fall 2021. The winery sits in one of California’s oldest wine regions, the scenic Temecula Valley.
Scott Reiner ’90 is in his dream profession. His company, Eat, Drink and Be Happy, sources specialty wines from around the world, which means Reiner travels much of the time, discovering new wines and matching those with the right client.
As senior federal policy advisor for the National Rural Water Association, Jennifer O’Hara Palmiotto ’82 acts as a voice for the thousands of small water systems around the nation that provide clean drinking water and safe wastewater treatment for the United States’ most remote communities.
Eric Woolworth ’83 is president, business operations, of the Miami Heat NBA franchise, not only a successful team, but also known as progressive in the workplace and with having a commitment to charitable efforts in the community.
The Platform Gallery in Lions River, South Africa, owned by Molly Malloy ’06, features work by local artists often inspired by South African wildlife in a restored 100-year-old train storage shed turned gallery. The gallery hosts a charity auction annually called Art for Conservation that benefits wildlife conservation.
As co-owner of saltwater fly and light tackle fishing company Westport Fly, Parker Mauck ’77 now enjoys taking clients out in Buzzard’s Bay in Massachusetts after working for close to 25 years in the cranberry industry.
Liz Shepherd Bourgeois ’05
Liz Shepherd Bourgeois ’05, senior spokesperson for the secretary of the Treasury, Janet Yellen, has the huge task of communicating clearly about economic programs, the state of the economy, and the Department’s work domestically and with other countries.
Donna Henry Cryer ’88
As a three-decade liver transplant survivor, Donna Henry Cryer ’88 leads the Global Liver Institute, a multinational patient-driven advocacy organization that she founded which is dedicated to fighting liver disease and finding treatments to help those with liver illnesses and other rare diseases live as fully as possible.
Ben Freedman ’08, Brendan Maaghul ’08, & Mark Lentini ’08
2008 classmates Freedman, Maaghul, and Lentini cofounded the start-up Boomerang to simplify the returns process when shopping online. Using their combined career experience in retail, shipping and delivery services, and finance, Boomerang partners with online retailers and package carriers to enable customers to return unwanted items directly from home.
Kate Parks Schaefer ’05
Schaefer has been a tireless advocate for protecting the natural environment for years. Now she’s passionate about her work as director of land protection for South Carolina’s Open Land Trust, trying to protect irreplaceable coastal land in the Lowcountry region.
Karen Stevenson ’75 Honored
Karen Stevenson ’75 was awarded the Horace Dutton Taft Alumni Medal and is the first woman of color to receive the school’s highest alumni honor. After a career as a trial lawyer, she became the first Black woman to serve as a federal magistrate judge in the Central District of California. The award is given each year to a person whose life work best reflects the essence of the Taft School motto, Non ut sibi ministretur sed ut ministret.
Geoffrey Hoguet ’68
How Geoffrey Hoguet ’68 is fulfilling the charitable spirit of his Rothschild forebears
Learn why a descendant of the Austrian branch of the Rothschild family is pursuing restitution of his family’s legacy and property seized by the Nazis, such as a charity to establish a foundation for mental health, works of art, and more, which were later transferred to the city of Vienna and also taken by the Czech Republic.
Betsy Wagner ’85
As a longtime journalist and video producer, Betsy Wagner has seen the world of media shift and change over the years. She’s reported on such varied topics as education, science, and culture, and as a producer, Wagner has written news and documentary specials for cable clients including the Discovery Channel, A&E, and VH-1, and produced shows for Yahoo Finance.
Henry Siemon ’03
When Henry Siemon ’03 assumed the role of president and CEO of The Siemon Company in 2021, he became the fifth family member in as many generations to hold the position since his great-great-grandfather founded the company in 1903. The company is now based in Watertown, Connecticut, and produces telecommunications cabling and connectivity systems for data centers and local area networks.
Samantha Lamy '14
First lieutenant Samantha Lamy ’14 in the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division has been passionate about helping others since she graduated from Taft. In August 2021, she found herself on the frontlines assisting with the evacuation of American troops and citizens, as well as Afghan Special Immigrant Visa holders, during the U.S. withdrawal from Kabul.
Matt Griswold XI ’85 and Martin Griswold ’91
Brothers Matt Griswold XI ’85 and Martin Griswold ’91 are committed to building a plant nursery for the future through environmentally sustainable innovations at their wholesale business Judges Farm in Old Lyme, Connecticut. Operating on land stewarded by generations of their family since 1690, Matt and Martin are moving toward zero-generation-emissions electricity for their business vehicles.
Lyssa Lincoln Reed ’07
As an experienced geotechnical engineer, Lyssa Lincoln Reed ’07 evaluates soil, rock, groundwater, and manmade materials, particularly their interaction with earth retention systems and structure foundations as a project manager at Haley & Aldrich, one the of the country’s top environmental and geotechnical engineering consultants.
Molly Kellogg ’83
As chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Waterbury, Connecticut-based Hubbard-Hall, Molly Kellogg ’83 is the sixth generation to operate the family-run company, which sells surface finishing chemistries to manufacturers of durable goods. And with a philanthropic mission as part of its core, Hubbard-Hall is committed to giving back to the local community.
David Hanke '12
David Hanke ’12, superintendent of the San Luis & Rio Grande Railroad, a shortline that runs for 154 miles in southern Colorado near the New Mexico border, knew early on that he wanted to work in the train industry. After working in other fields, he’s doing what he likes best and solving logistical problems to keep products moving for customers who depend on it.
Dyllan McGee '89
As founder and executive producer of McGee Media and MAKERS, and a two-time Emmy award-winning filmmaker, Dyllan McGee ’89 keeps creating and working on quality productions. Among these are the top-rated PBS show Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Not Done: Women Remaking America. Telling the stories of the underrepresented has been a life calling for McGee.
Dr. Tarik Asmerom ’01
Dr. Tarik Asmerom ’01, an emergency room physician at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, and an assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine, has been on the front lines of the pandemic along with colleagues, treating COVID patients of all ages and adapting to frequent changes as the science evolves.
Barnaby Conrad III '70
In this first biography of French artist Jacques Villegléin English, Jacques Villeglé and the Streets of Paris, Barnaby Conrad ’70 portrays this father of Street Art as as France’s greatest living artist. Conrad is an artist himself, as well as an editor and author, and lived in Paris in the 1980s, but he first met Villeglé at a gallery in San Francisco in 2003.
Chris Malik '76
Chris Malik ’76 helps keep Connecticut’s water clean through his work for the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. Malik serves as Southwest Coastal, South Central Coastal, and Connecticut Mainstem watershed manager. It’s a job that is especially gratifying, he says, and where he can make a positive impact on the world.
Margeaux Walter '01
Photographer and multimedia artist Margeaux Walter ’01 finds inspiration for the colorful reflections on society she creates and then photographs from things that are often part of daily life: reading a newspaper, walking down the street, going into a store. She creates a tableaux to present concepts of humans’ relationships with their environments.
Blake DiMarco Herrera ’00
Blake DiMarco Herrera has helped run schools for underserved children ever since leaving an earlier corporate career. She’s now product manager of school services at Bezos Academy, a nonprofit is opening tuition-free, Montessori-inspired preschools nationwide that will serve low-income and middle-class families, including families who earn too much to qualify for Head Start.
Jared Jackson ’10
Jared Jackson, literary programs manager for the New York branch of PEN America, helps foster conversations with some of today’s leading minds and works to promote free expression and effect social change, and also also leads the Emerging Voices Fellowship to encourage promising writers and diversify the publishing and media landscapes.
Hilary Klotz Steinman ’86
Hilary Klotz Steinman has been producing documentary films for more than 20 years, with subjects as varied as contraception and the environmental toll of the digital revolution. Her most recent release is The Codebreaker, the story of the untold hero of cryptology, Elizebeth Smith Friedman. Along with overseeing her production company, Napatree Films, Steinman is the senior vice president/executive producer of the documentary division of Engel Entertainment.
Willy Donaldson ’74
Across more than 35 years as a board member, president, and chief executive at eight companies, and more than three decades of teaching, Willy Donaldson has devoted his working life to getting himself and others to see the larger picture through systems thinking. Donaldson is an associate professor and the director of the Biotechnology and Management Program at Christopher Newport University.
Bianca Perren ’93
As a paleoecologist for the famed British Antarctic Survey, Bianca Perren’s fieldwork routinely involves visiting some of the most inhospitable locations on earth. She establishes ecological records through a process called “lake coring,” or drilling holes into the muddy bottom of lakes, retrieving samples from below the surface to gather an environmental record.
Dave Kirkpatrick ’89
As a coproducer, Dave Kirkpatrick helped create the critically acclaimed film Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President, which sheds light on Carter’s close ties to popular Southern rock musicians, both during the 1976 presidential campaign and well into his time in the White House.
Maria Dennis ’84
Maria Dennis, a member of the 1990 World Championships hockey team, continues her love affair with hockey, now as director of player health and safety at the National Hockey League Players’ Association and also acts as associate counsel for the NHLPA.
Will O’Meara ’12
Will O’Meara cofounded Hungry Reaper Farm in Morris, Connecticut, not far from Taft, with his fiancée in 2020, after nine years of experience farming in New England. O’Meara’s work at his vegetable farm is more than a job—it’s a passion, a calling, and an industry he wholeheartedly believes in and strives to improve.
Bob Anderson ’82
Bob Anderson ’82 is the cofounder of Leading Challenges and 1Hero Sports, which help clients grow and succeed through the power of emotional intelligence. He has spent the last 20 years crisscrossing the globe. “When something isn’t working at an organization, be that leadership struggles or problems within the team, we get brought in,” he says.
Matt Rice '94
As director of the Colorado River Basin for American Rivers, an advocacy group based in Washington, 1994 alum Matt Rice’s work is aimed at getting people in the region to recognize the urgency of the unfolding environmental disaster caused by global warming (aridification and the increasing reduction of water availability)—and to adapt before it’s too late.
Susie Banikarim '93
If ever there was a crucible for journalism, Susie Banikarim ’93, as executive VP and head of global newsgathering at Vice News, met this one head-on—a year consumed by a pandemic, protests, and a presidential election. The public health crisis sent media executives like Banikarim scrambling to reimagine the newsroom, coverage, and work-life balance.
Rick Wies '71
Throughout his four-decade career as a Connecticut architect, Rick Wies ’71 has stayed open and adaptable to each project that comes across his drawing board. At any given time, he might be designing a new apartment complex, overseeing renovations of a commuter rail station, helping reinvent a local theater, or volunteering to help build a house for a veteran with PTSD—sometimes simultaneously.
Eliza Geddes '97
Over the years, artist Eliza Geddes ’97 has explored several mediums—welding, mixed media sculpture—but ultimately chose to pursue painting as a career. Her paintings begin with a focus on color combinations, and she chooses to work with house paint over oils or acrylics. Geddes’ work has been displayed at exhibitions across the U.S. and in London, and is in three permanent collections in New York.
Tom Ely '67
As a lifelong musician and amateur songwriter, Tim Ely ’67 will finally see one of his songs make its way into a major motion picture this year. “The Long Haul” is in The Comeback Trail, starring Robert De Niro, Tommy Lee Jones, and Morgan Freeman.
2020 Horace Dutton Taft Alumni Medal Honoree
Steven Erlanger’s enduring newspaper career is rich with vignettes of a nomadic life of war zones, far-flung capitals, and contrasting cultures. As the The New York Times chief diplomatic correspondent in Europe, Erlanger has also served as bureau chief in London, Paris, Jerusalem, Berlin, Prague, Moscow, and Bangkok. Taft recognizes him with the school’s highest alumni honor.
Liz Temkin ’83
As an epidemiologist with Israel’s National Center for Infection Control and Antibiotic Resistance, Dr. Liz Temkin ’83 focuses on how to control the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, how to limit unnecessary antibiotic use, and how to respond to the fact that few new antibiotics are in development.
Amber Guild ’95
As president of the T Brand portfolio—the marketing services division of The New York Times—Amber Guild ’95 helps brands tell their most powerful stories in innovative ways while connecting them to The Times’ vast and devoted audience.
Jeremiah Vargas ’16
Jeremiah Vargas ’16 cofounded Tater Bats, a Waterbury, Connecticut-based custom wooden baseball bat and accessories company, with his father and brother. What started in a backyard shed has become a 3,500-square foot workshop and storefront selling to players all over the county, including Major League professionals.
Fiona McFarland ’04
A desire to serve, which first took hold during her time at Taft, has gone on to drive many of Fiona McFarland’s life decisions, including her most recent ambition: being elected to the Florida State House.After graduating from the United States Naval Academy McFarland spent eight years on active duty, including six and a half years at sea.
Rob Terenzi ’01
Rob Terenzi ’01 and his wife, along with a college friend, saw an opportunity to help coffee farmers and upend the supply chain. They formed Vega Coffee, known for its dedication to individual coffee farmers in Nicaragua.
Andrew Wertheim ’76
Andrew Wertheim ’76 is the owner and president of Tea Importers, a socially responsible business that buys from tea producing companies around the world and sells to major tea packers and blenders. The family-owned company was founded in 1958.
Ellie O’Neill ’11
Based on their view that water scarcity is a pressing issue of our time, Ellie O’Neill ’11 and Jack Hartpence cofounded Powwater, a social business that sells reusable water bottles, coffee mugs, and wine tumblers and reinvests profits into sustainable clean drinking water systems across the globe.
Charley Rosenberry ’77
CharleyRosenberry ’77, who retired from his law career, now spends his days organizing weeklong hikes for veterans who have recently returned from combat, and also doing llama pack trips into the Cascade Mountains to resupply trail crews working there.
Irina Prentice ’94
Read about the work of Irina Prentice ’94, who is part of a team at Encounter Edu, a London-based education agency using innovative teaching methods, such as live-stream learning, to help students in classrooms around the world learn about pressing environmental issues.
Vaughan Scully ’83
Heights Woodworking, Vaughan Scully’s Brooklyn, New York-based and decades-old custom carpentry shop fabricates intricate and impressive front doors adorning many historic brownstone townhouses, as well as cabinets, stairs, windows, and moldings.
Jennifer Wolter ’96
Jennifer Wolter is a founder of S.A.F.E.R., the Survivors of Abuse Feeling Empowered for Re-Entry program, at the Suffolk County House of Correction in Boston, a program that works to end domestic violence, offering trauma-informed, gender-specific support for men and women in custody.
John Wyman ’10
John Wyman ’10 traded his corporate office in Times Square for the desert plains and mountains of Utah, where he’s now an advanced field lead at Elements Traverse, a wilderness therapy program for young adults battling issues such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse, addiction, and suicidal behavior.
Stacey Rudnick '85
In her role as director of the Center of Leadership and Ethics at McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin, Stacey Rudnick gives MBA students the tools to become the “effective, thoughtful, moral leaders that businesses so desperately need,” she says
Ranjit Bindra ’94
Read about the work of Dr. Ranjit Bindra ’94, co-director of Yale University’s Brain Tumor Center. Bindra is physician-scientist and biotechnology entrepreneur, specializing in the study of pediatric glioma. Two years ago, he started Cybrexa Therapeutics to bring its best tumor targeting technology to patients.
Liz Osterhus Fleuette ’84
Liz Osterhus Fleuette ’84 was inspired to start Ms President US when her daughter, Maggie, at age 5 announced that she wanted to be the first female president during a visit to the National Constitution Center. Through the nonpartisan, nonprofit, community-based program and its mentors, girls learn about public speaking, diplomacy and listening skills, local/state/federal government, and women’s history.
Wesley Jamieson ’13
In our Q&A, Wesley Jamieson ’13 unpacks what blockchain technology is and isn’t and how it works on a practical level. Jamieson is a lead blockchain technical resource in accounting firm RSM’s Blockchain and Digital Asset Management Consulting practice.
Alexandra Dickson ’99
For actor and improviser Alexandra Dickson ’99, who performs and teaches at New York’s Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, it all began in an introductory acting class during her mid year at Taft. After studying acting at the Circle in the Square Theatre School and taking workshops at Chicago’s The Second City, she now appears weekly with The Stepfathers.
Donna Eldridge ’76
For Bay Area-based Donna Eldridge ’76, delivering furniture to a family of Afghan refugees in her truck is just another day. But for these uprooted families who have landed in the U.S. with nothing, her services are invaluable, and, ultimately, life-altering. Read about her Non ut sibi-inspired service work.
Larry Morris ’65 received Taft’s highest alumni honor this year for his more than 40 years of work at the Quebec-Labrador Foundation, including as its president for three decades and for his role as a leader in the environmental and conservation fields. Read about Morris’s leadership at QLF with its broad-reaching, community-based conservation efforts.
Abby Fabiaschi ’98
Read about Abby Fabiaschi ’98, cofounder of Empower Her Network (EHN), a nonprofit that collaborates with survivors of human trafficking to help them on a path toward independence. Operating in several large cities and regions throughout the U.S., EHN helps break down barriers for victims of human trafficking.
Scott Barnsby ’94
Scott Barnsby ’94 has spent more than 10 years crisscrossing the country as a scout for the Cleveland Indians. Now as scouting director, his time is spent reading reports and talking with his staff about the club’s directions in the draft, but he’s still connected to the game he loves.
Bill Reynolds ’69
After a 35-year career as a painter and muralist, Bill Reynolds ’69 became a woodworking instructor, teaching newly blind adults to use woodworking tools (including some power tools) at the Carroll Center for the Blind, a leading blindness rehabilitation center in Newton, Massachusetts.
Eliza Clark '03
Based in Los Angeles, Eliza Clark '03 is both an accomplished playwright and the showrunner/executive producer of TNT's popular drama Animal Kingdom. On any given day, Clark is in the writers' room, the editing suite, on set, or in production meetings.
Liz Camp ’96
As visual development production supervisor for DreamWorks Animation, Liz Camp ’96 works on the popular How to Train Your Dragon series of films, including the recently released The Hidden World, third in the series. Camp crafts the look of the characters and the digital environments of the film, everything that gives a film its unique look.
Nick Gotten ’93
Blending the technical with the creative—that’s what Nick Gotten ’93 loves about his job as a re-recording mixer and sound engineer. Gotten takes recorded dialogue, sound effects, and music to create the final version of a soundtrack for a feature film or television program. He won an Emmy for his work on mixing the sound for the Disney juggernaut show, Sofia the First.
Torie Snyder Pearce ’04
Torie Snyder Pearce ’04 has always been inspired by Taft’s motto, Not to be served but to serve. A strong resonance with Non ut sibi helped persuade her to become a pediatric nurse, and to cofound Urgent Care for Kids, an urgent care company specializing in pediatrics in Texas.
Chanda Gunn ’99
Former Olympic hockey player Chanda Gunn ’99 helped lead Team USA to a World Championship in 2005 and an Olympic Bronze Medal in Turin in 2006 while battling epilepsy. Diagnosed at the age of 9, she has turned a substantial obstacle into a fulfilling career. A longtime spokesperson for the Epilepsy Foundation of America, Gunn now works for the Epilepsy Foundation New England.
Sophie Quinton ’06
In her work as a staff writer for Stateline.org, a news service affiliated with the Pew Charitable Trusts, Sophie Quinton ’06 is filling the need for deep, fact-based reporting on trends at the state and local level by uncovering stories in smaller communities throughout the U.S.
Pete Alexander ’94
Pete Alexander has something in common with the animals he researches as a biologist. Like cougars, he pursues his prey, following them up mountains and through canyons in Wyoming. Unlike the big cats, though, Alexander is studying, not stalking.
Caitlin Kennedy ’12
In the two years since graduating from Hamilton College, Caitlin Kennedy has already established herself in a career that wholeheartedly channels Taft’s ethic of Non ut sibi. Kennedy works as a contracts associate at the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO), a New York-based nonprofit providing employment services to men and women with criminal convictions.
Christopher Eanes ’94
After he assumed directorship of the Cincinnati Boychoir in 2009, Christopher Eanes soon discovered that the 45-year-old ensemble needed to adapt its mission. Eanes has grown the group of nearly 200 boys between kindergarten and high school age into an organization that uses music as an important teaching tool.
Katie Putnam Martinez ’00
San Francisco-based designer Katie Putnam Martinez likes rooms and places that feel layered with old and new. “I gravitate more toward contemporary aspects in terms of clean lines and simplicity,” she says, but she often includes vintage pieces in her projects. Martinez focuses primarily on West Coast residential projects, but she has also worked on offices and a store.
Jamie Cheney Flaherty '98
Like many of the most successful start-ups, 1998 alum Jamie Flaherty Cheney’s innovative search firm Prokanga was born from a place of personal experience. Cheney asked herself the question frequently pondered by working moms who are experienced professionals: Can you care for your child and also hang on to the career that you’ve invested so much in? As a result, she launched Prokanga, a search firm blending access to traditional and flexible workforces.
Craig Reistad ’80
At the PyeongChang Winter Olympics in South Korea, Craig Reistad served as Olympic security coordinator for the U.S. contingent of athletes, staff, media, and dignitaries. Reistad was there for a nearly two-year assignment with the Diplomatic Security Service, the State Department equivalent to the Secret Service that provides protection at U.S. embassies and consulates around the globe and at major international events.
AJ Mleczko ’93
Former Olympic gold medalist AJ Mleczko had her fifth assignment as NBC’s women’s hockey analyst at the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics for her post-playing broadcasting career, which started in 2006. In May 2018, she also became the first female broadcaster to call an NHL playoff game from the booth.
Evelyn Barata Lee ’75
Evelyn Barata Lee transformed her Southport, Connecticut, property into Butternut Gardens, a fresh-cut flower garden that produces about 45,000 beautiful flowers every year. Since 2011, her business has grown to include a small retail cottage, wholesale accounts, weddings and events, workshops and presentations, and a flower delivery subscription service for local customers.
Clarence Kwei ’91
Clarence Kwei is vice president of product and engineering at Univision Communications Inc., where he oversees product and technical strategy across the company’s digital platforms for web, mobile, and television. If you’ve been on websites owned by the media brands Meredith, Time Inc., Condé Nast, or Univision, you’ve seen Kwei’s website development work.
Marina Martin '03
After serving as the chief technology officer for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Marina Martin is now a partner with Layer Aleph, a digital services company that restores complex systems to service. Her true passion, though, is finding ways to make the nation's complex foster care system function safely and efficiently to minimize the time children spend in foster care.
Philip Howard '66
As an author and founder of Common Good, a nonpartisan reform coalition that describes itself as working to simplify government to put humans back in charge, cut red tape, and limit bureaucracy that prevents progress, Philip Howard is being recognized for his impressive work with Taft's highest alumni honor. He is also senior counsel at the New York City law firm Covington & Burling.
Vanessa LeFebvre Robinson ’95
Vanessa LeFebvre Robinson is leading the women’s merchandising team at Stitch Fix, one of the most successful and exciting fashion/technology companies in the world. Starting at her mother’s clothing store before she went to UPenn, then moving on to a position as a buyer at Lord & Taylor, along with other prominent retailers, she is now at the forefront of fashion selection using technology.
Dennis Liu '02
Netflix has ordered a 10-episode series of the sci-fi family drama called Raising Dion, based on Dennis Liu's short film and comic book of the same name. A graduate of NYU's Tisch School for the Arts, Liu has spent much of the last 10 years directing commercials and music videos for a variety of artists.
Tom Losee ’84
Combine running and stand-up paddleboarding and what do you get? RUN/SUP®, outdoor sports entrepreneur Tom Losee’s increasingly popular training program that fuses his two favorite recreational fitness activities. For more than 10 years, Losee has worked in the stand-up paddleboard business in Florida’s northwestern Gulf Coast.
Adam Yonkers '89
Adam Yonkers '89 says that making a huge career change in his early-30s freed him to take on a career that feeds his soul. He went from corporate communications—marketing and public relations at a big corporate law firm—to teaching U.S. history and foreign policy to high schoolers at Palo Alto Unified in California.
Katie Maxey Sorrentino ’85
Ever wonder how retailers seem to know what you want to buy before you do? Mining data about our likes and dislikes to help perfect the relationship with consumers is what Go Think!, the company of Katie Maxey Sorrentino ’85, is doing to help guide retailers across the nation.
Harrison Clay ’92
Early in his career, Harrison Clay ’92 began thinking about methane—as a solution to the nation’s dependence on foreign oil and a way to reduce greenhouse gases. Read about Clay’s role as BP’s vice president of strategic development, global environmental products, and his work in biogas and biomethane project development.
John McGowan ’81
Mathematical software engineer John McGowan ’81 created Mathematical Software, a start-up dedicated to researching and developing tools and algorithms that can be used to automate complex data analysis. Learn about his work to help firms analyze their research and development in data-intensive areas such as medicine or pharmaceuticals, finance, and engineering.
Simone Foxman ’07
As an investing reporter for Bloomberg, Simone Foxman’s beat specific to the finance industry allows her to “uncover stories that the public deserves to hear,” she says. Read about her role as a journalist that allows her to be part of conversations happening at the highest level in the world of finance.
Klara Skrivankova ’96
In her role at Anti-Slavery International, the world’s oldest international human rights organization, Klara Skrivankova ’96 works with businesses on tackling forced labor in supply chains. Read more about her efforts to eradicate the modern slavery that reaches, often invisibly, into many aspects of our lives.
Gabe McMackin ’94
Gabe McMackin ’94, chef and owner of The Finch, a restaurant in Brooklyn, wasn’t planning to “shoot for the stars,” when he opened. “My goal was to play with food and to create a neighborhood restaurant that straddles the line between formal and informal service,” he says. Read more about The Finch and McMackin’s journey to being awarded a Michelin star.
Luisa Bonachea ’00
Luisa Bonachea ’00 never imagined that she’d combine her legal training with her love of wine in a fulfilling career. Read about her work as an intellectual property attorney based in Napa Valley who specializes in trademark and copyright law for wine-industry clients.
Leslie Herrlinger Lanahan ’73
Leslie Herrlinger Lanahan ’73, whose son, Lynn Gordon “Gordie” Bailey Jr., died of an alcohol poisoning at the University of Colorado after a fraternity initiation ceremony in September 2004, has made it her and her family’s mission to bring awareness about alcohol poisoning and hazing in order to save lives.
Doug Ellis ’54
After a long career in the textile industry, Doug Ellis ’54 decided it was an ideal time to return to his passion of flying. Ellis is a volunteer pilot for Angel Flight, which offers free transportation to patients in need of medical treatment and who are too sick or injured to drive a long distance or fly on a commercial jet to a hospital.
Tyler Kneisel '99
Dockwa, cofounded by Tyler Kneisel ’99, makes reserving boat slips a snap. Since its launch in 2015, tens of thousands of boaters now find, reserve, and pay for moorings in real time, using the award-winning Dockwa platform on their computers or the free mobile app.
Billy Himmelrich ’82
Since 1999, owner Billy Himmelrich ’82 has been running Old School Bakery in Delray Beach, Florida—known for its fresh bread with a delicious combination of taste and texture—and providing bread to top restaurants, hotels, and country clubs in Southeast Florida, along with donating unsold bread to the Palm Beach County Food Bank and helping raise money for hunger relief through events.
Nick Firestone ’84
Nick Firestone ’84 has loved racing since age 3. At 51, he’s a professional race car driver who has raced among the most acclaimed drivers in the world and has been racing since the late 1980s. Firestone’s niche is go-karts, and he regularly races in the U.S. and internationally.
Max Sandvoss '98
Read about the goat farm and creamery owned by Max Sandvoss ’98 in upstate New York and his transition from actor to experienced farmer and cheesemaker. He and his brother, Trystan, are committed to the entire natural process with grass-fed animals and organic pastures. First Light sells its cheeses at farmers’ markets and to stores and restaurants across six states.
Peter Van Der Mije ’98
After working for notable chefs in New York City, Peter Van Der Mije ’98 opened Osteria Leana, a chic, casual Italian restaurant in Oyster Bay on Long Island in 2016. He’s successfully established a place that is small, local, and accessible for diners craving a city experience along the North Shore coastline, with easy access to excellent fresh produce and seafood.
Dr. Joyce Poole '74
For more than 40 years, Dr. Joyce Poole ’74, the 2017 Horace Dutton Taft Alumni Medal honoree, has been a passionate voice—a protector and defender—of elephants, dedicating her life to their conservation and welfare.
Emerson Wickwire '91
Sleep expert Emerson Wickwire '91 studies the effects of what is known as “blue light” emitted from electronic devices on the body’s natural circadian rhythms, and discusses the importance of getting enough sleep.
Nick Halmos '97
Nick Halmos '97 has created a way to efficiently grow food in urban environments by combining hydroponic systems with automation and live data. He established Cityblooms, a micro-farm technology company that can safely and sustainably grow fresh food in a range of climates and everywhere from rooftops to parking lots.
Karina Corrigan '88
As the Peabody Essex Museum’s H.A. Crosby Forbes Curator of Asian Export Art, Karina Corrigan ’88 is charged with overseeing the world’s most comprehensive collection of fine and decorative art made in Asia for export to the West.
Ashley Wilberding Balavione '90
As a perfumer for the leading privately owned fragrance company in the world, Ashley Wilberding Balavoine ’90 gets to create the scents that, whether we realize it or not, are in products that most of us use every day. Balavoine has to keep abreast of the trends in fragrance, which are very connected to each culture, and vary by country.
Michael Klein '10
The diversity of Klein’s role as a project engineer for AMEC Foster Wheeler, an international engineering and project management firm specializing in energy and infrastructure, keeps him excited about being a civil engineer.
Christopher Persley ’91
Persley put his education career on hold to become a stay-at-home dad to his daughter, Camilla, and now chronicles this experience on his blog, The Brown Gothamite, in addition to being a fatherhood advocate.
Jane Kinney ’06
As assistant director for the Commercial Spaceflight Federation (CSF), Kinney supports CSF’s engagement with government entities, industry experts, and entrepreneurs for opportunities in the commercial space industry.
Anthony Howe ’73
Howe designed the Rio Olympics cauldron, a kinetic sculpture that provided a resplendent backdrop for the flame with a kaleidoscope effect in August 2017.
Alison Green Hanson '90
After working in veterinary clinics for about 10 years, Hanson decided to start a different kind of practice.
Andrew Eisen ’04
Finding Youth in Oregon
Alex Forbes ’76
For Forbes, collaboration is the key to creative songwriting.
For Forbes, collaboration is the key to creative songwriting.
Lizzie Macaulay-Lewis ’98
Read about Lizzie Macaulay-Lewis ’98, who has recently been helping document archeological sites in the Middle East that are endangered due to conflicts, especially in Syria. Her research focuses on the material culture of the Roman, Late Antique, and Islamic worlds, and Islamic architecture.
Andy Taylor ’72
Taylor is changing the lives of students in Botswana.
Charles Safran ’69
Safran is using technology to improve patient care.