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YAM Notes: March/April 2015

By Gregory A. Weiss

With this issue we are about to begin the countdown to the greatest 50th reunion ever. Make sure you block your calendars for June 2–5, 2016. This will be a once-in-a-lifetime event you can’t miss!

Remember the hardcover class book prepared for our 25th—the one you pull off the shelf from time to time to look up classmates? We shortly will begin the preparation of a book for the 50th that will be bigger and better! In the next month or so you will be receiving information from our class book editor-in-chief, Howie Moffett, on how to go about submitting materials for the book. Start thinking about what to write for your personal essay; these are the most interesting items in the book, and the more of them we receive the better it will be. The plan is to publish it in early winter of 2016 to generate a real buzz for reunion attendance.

We have only one obituary this month: Doug Yates, our sole Rhodes scholar, died on January 3 in New Haven. Doug was the executive editor of the Yale Daily News and secretary of our class. After three years in Oxford he returned to Yale to earn a PhD in political science. He had quite a career in academia. At Yale he was an assistant professor in political science and then assistant dean at the Yale School of Management in its early years. He then moved to Hanover, where he was an assistant professor at Dartmouth. He leaves his wife, three children, and five grandchildren. As of this writing in early January, a large contingent of classmates is planning to attend his memorial service in NYC.

A new retiree is Charlie Deknatel: “I have recently retired from my last job as a project manager/planner with the Massachusetts Division of Capital Asset Management, after 27-1/2 years. I /we (Cath and myself) are adjusting to a new schedule. I am spending about a day a week as a volunteer at the City of Boston Archeology Lab sorting endless artifacts, also taking art classes, trying to do more fishing, and realizing that retirement takes planning on a day-to-day basis.”

A brief note from John Harpold reflects what many of us are involved with at this stage in our lives: “One grandchild, nearly 2, Noah William Harpold. Hip replacement in the future.”

If you go to our class website, Yale66.org, and click “AYA Reports, November 2014,” you will find a well-written and interesting report by our class AYA representative, Steve Shelov, on this year’s annual AYA assembly held in November. The focus of the assembly was entrepreneurship and how it is being promoted by Yale. Steve continues to work as associate dean for medical students from Stonybrook at Winthrop University Hospital.

“A Brand New World in Which Men Ruled” is the title of a long article published in the December 23New York Times. It focuses on the 20th reunion of Stanford’s class of 1994, the mark the members of that class have made on the world of technology, and how much of the success has gone to the men rather than the women. One of the class members mentioned in the article is Tom Kitch’s son, Justin, who is quoted as saying, “I tell people I graduated from Stanford the day the web was born.” Justin’s senior thesis turned into a start-up founded in 1997 and called Homestead Technologies, which made it easier for small businesses to build websites and which he later sold to Intuit. By the way, Justin’s twin brother, Aaron, graduated from Yale, earned a PhD at the University of Chicago, and is now an English professor at Bowdoin.

From Tom Scott: “After 40 years of practicing law in the justice department and at various law firms in downtown DC, I have now taken a position at a patent licensing company owned by classmate John Harvey and his wife Kazie. Of course, I have been working with John on his patent portfolio since 1981 so this is not exactly a ‘new job.’ In any event, it is very rewarding to help John with his business directly. It is also nice to have a short ‘commute’ of only 20 minutes from my home.”

And finally, this provocative message from Paul Anderson: “The ‘shortest, gladdest years’ have not been obscured by either sunshine or rain on my rodeo—seeing old friends and enduring the loss of others makes me more and more appreciative of what I got and still have from those years. To all my ‘Bills’ (HammockHannayFarnum, and Sandalls), no charge. I owe you for all the good times—and two dozen others: DuncanJim, and Mike A. Where are you Froggie and Al? In memoriam, Paul DeVries; RIP. Let’s stay alive a bit longer. I still substitute teach high school; what’s the matter with me? If you know me, you know.”