from Oberlin is not just a rite of passage, but of consecration.
The task of Obies like us, our noblest purpose, is not simply to
achieve individual success, knowledge, or even happiness, but rather
to transform in some modest way the world around us, to elevate and
redeem it through creative acts of redemption, and thereby transform
and redeem ourselves.
other colleges and institutions of higher learning, this monastic
enclave has been charged since inception with a utopian sense of
moral mission, a pervasive idealism about character and conduct,
authenticity and meaning that takes root and embeds deeply inside us
during four years of youthful incubation. It leaves an
indelible imprint, a genetic encoding, that works its internal
alchemy to shape who we become, what we do, how we do it and, as we
pause to ponder after fifty years, why.
worldly virtues of expediency and pragmatism are subordinate to
virtue itself. Here a moral map, an aesthetic vision, however
unarticulated or unconscious, unfolds within. This is the glue
that binds us all together, even today, decades later. It is
our shared DNA of mission, purpose, conviction, and ultimately
sacrifice beyond the realm of mere ambition. We are the
converted. We are the infused. We are the
undeterred. We are the sanctified. We are the
possessed. We are the Sixty-Niners.
our 50th Class Reunion in May 2019 are now underway.
our reunion approaches, my correspondence by necessity must become
more transmittal in nature, fulfilling the ministerial duties of my
office, and thereby less creative. I apologize in advance and
will do my best to steer a middle course.
Vice-President, Carol McLaughlin Fishwick, and I have joined several
enterprising classmates on a Reunion Committee chaired by our Class
Agent, Walt Galloway.
brings decades of leadership experience to our collective
undertaking and we're fortunate to have him at the helm.
committee and college reps all convened on campus for three days
this past September.
other members of the RC, alphabetically by first name, are:
Bill Treuhaft, Biz Harralson, Bob Shay, Bonnie Wishne, Chip Hauss,
Christie Seltzer Fountain, David Eisner, Debbie Kent Stein, Debby
Roosevelt, Deidre Carr, Diane Vannais, Ellen Hill, Gail Treesiwin,
George Spencer-Green, John Bowman, John Kramer, Les Leopold, Lynn
Higgins, Mike Jarvis, Mike Lubas, Mimi Lam, Sid Comings and Tom
Thomas. We're well-staffed by an outstanding college team:
Meena Ghaziasgar, Director of Alumni Relations, Alan Goldman,
Associate Director of Gift Planning, Ann Deppman, Director of Gift
Planning, and Danielle Young, Executive Director of Oberlin Alumni Association.
were amazed, although not surprised, how quickly we all
reconnected: the glue is still intact this was a
mini-reunion. We also welcomed our remarkable new President,
Carmen Ambar. These are exciting times at Oberlin.
Krulwich and I watched Carmen dazzle a packed ballroom of
enthusiastic Obies at the New York Hilton last October.
goal is to make our 50th Class Reunion more than a typical
gathering, merely toasting an idealized past, but rather a living
interpersonal experience in the present. We'll assemble a
dynamic mix of diverse and creative people who share deep roots not
simply to be recalled, but reactivated as a catalyst for
engagement. In the process, we will rediscover our commonality
and our differences and celebrate both.