Class Notes

60th Reunion Updates

June 18, 2014

We had a wonderful weekend in Deerfield to celebrate our 60th. Thirty-one members of the class participated for some part of the weekend. Zeke Knight set up outstanding programs that allowed us to learn about teaching and activities at Deerfield. We had the opportunity to make David Pond the second honorary member of the Class of 1954. The other honorary member, Eric Widmer, his wife Meera Viswanathan, and Head of School Margarita Curtis participated in a program moderated by Linus Travers on the changing face of education. Eric also told the Tom Ashley story at the Saturday night reception. The weekend provided a time to talk with classmates.

Classmates who could not attend provided the following updates.

Asko Puumalainan was not able to attend due to surgery. He still plays golf and is planning a visit to Deerfield in a couple of years to celebrate his 80th birthday. Maybe a time for another reunion?

John Murray lives in Sao Paulo, Brazil where he works for Boyden Global Executive Search, a company which he has led in Brazil for the last 24 years. He plans to retire this year.

Henry Hyde is working with a company, Circulatory Intelligence, that is developing a new way to diagnose and treat heart failure. The project is based on a spinoff of work done by a cardiologist with NASA in the late 1950’s when they were trying to determine the effects on the human cardiovascular system of leaving and reentering our atmosphere.

Peter Bolles is living in Las Vegas and is still employed as an Environmental Program Manager. He reviews fuel system sites, spills and regulatory violations which require environmental cleanup. They are about to go national with the environmental program that they have developed for the State of California.

Dick Balch and his wife Judy closed their retail business in Fredericksburg, Virginia on January 31. He continues his tax practice, but at a slower pace. He is trying to get a handle on this “retirement” business.

Rob Rodormer’s recovery from an appendicitis operation kept him sidelined from the reunion.

Linus Travers forwarded the following on Brandon Stoddard, who was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in Beverly Hills on March 11, along with entertainers Jay Leno and Julia Louis-Dreyfus and three others, His thoughtful acceptance speech emphasized the values with which he grew up and the need to take risks to make these values manifest. In her Variety article, correspondent Francesca Bacardi summarized Brandon’s work:

Stoddard Reigned Over Minis Glory Days
Having helped create the ABC Novel for Television phenomenon, Brandon Stoddard, who became the network’s president in 1985, harks back to the glory days of the miniseries, when “Roots,” “The Winds of War” and “The Thorn Birds” became the three most watched long-form dramas in TV history. During his tenure, the network was also home to such major hits as the “Wonder Years,” “Full House” and Roseanne.” Even though Stoddard departed ABC in 1989 because, he said at the time, “It’s just no fun any more,” he remained connected to the medium during a 10-year tenure as a professor at USC’s School for Cinema and Television, where he taught graduate students.

Sam Chase

1954