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YAM Notes: January/February 2010

By Gregory A. Weiss

A long article in the Business section of the October 31 edition of the New York Times described how Tom Elghanayan and his two brothers went about breaking up their $3 billion real estate partnership, Rockrose Development Corporation, one of New York City’s largest developers of residential buildings. The emphasis of the article was about how “the Elghanayan brothers’ split has been relatively swift, smooth, and secretive.” Their family moved from Iran in the early 1950s, and the brothers started their business from scratch in 1970.

Rene Reixach, an attorney in Rochester, New York, writes that several years after a divorce he ended up using an online dating service and hit the jackpot on one of his first matches. He has now been with Edith Lord for over a year. She is a professor of immunology and associate dean for graduate studies at the University of Rochester Medical Center. “It has brought new meaning to my life,” writes Rene, “especially being able to share in important events in her life, including her daughter’s wedding this fall.”

Mambo dancing in NYC and the Dominican Republic is what Ken Berv is doing to “keep his body moving.” His son Jacob is a Yale senior working with an important professor studying the nests of birds in Surinam and Ecuador. Son Mahlon is studying classical piano and composition at the School of Music at the University of Indiana. “Retirement for me is a long way off with an artist and an ornithologist in the family,” writes Ken, who has also recently re-taken up “the Sisyphean task of French horn playing.”

“As you may know,” writes Mike Fargo, “I’ve been teaching eighth-grade history at a local private school [in Palo Alto] for the last 13 years, and for the past 10 years I’ve been coaching our girls’ flag football team. A far cry from Yale football, but some things never change. I’m still teaching them how to lead block the sweeps.” It was great to hear from Bob Fischer after his “total non-participation in class activities” for the past 43 years. He says that he and his wife, Peggy, hope to make next year’s class dinner. We look forward to seeing him there. The Fischers live in Chantilly, Virginia, where Bob is senior project engineer for the Aerospace Corporation.

Among the many classmates at the Harvard-Yale football game in November were Shlomo D’ror (known in 1966 as Stephen Friedlander) and his wife, Ashirah Yosefah. Shlomo came all the way from Jerusalem to represent the Yale Club of Israel at the AYA assembly that coincided with The Game. His son, Jesse Friedlander (Class of 1993), was also in for the weekend, having traveled even further as a delegate for the Yale Club of Hong Kong.