Williams SoA Bicentennial Past Events

Archive of past bicentennial events. Visit the events page to see what's up next.

Back to School | EPHS 224 “Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Indian Food But Were Afraid to Ask” with Aroop Mukharji ’09 & Auyon Mukharji ’07

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Join brothers Aroop and Auyon Mukharji as they brew up a pot of their mother’s warming masala chai. In addition to the live cooking demo, Aroop and Auyon will discuss bits of Indian culinary history and trivia, drawing on their upbringings in an Indian-American household in Kansas City, their experiences working at Williamstown’s own Spice Root as college students, and Auyon’s cookbook research. Likely topics will include butter chicken, navigating an Indian menu, and how to use the word curry without causing inadvertent offense.

Instructors:
Aroop Mukharji ’09 is a Visiting Scholar at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts, and an Associate of the Applied History Project at the Harvard Kennedy School, where he studies U.S. presidential history and foreign policy. Since 2010, he has been the recipe typist and archivist for his mother’s Kansas City-based Indian cooking class, which has featured 313 Indian recipes over 402 classes.

Auyon Mukharji ’07 is a member of the Boston-based folk band Darlingside. He has spent the past few years researching and working on an Indian cookbook with his mother, Jyoti. The recipes are a collection of family favorites from Punjab and Bengal (along with a smattering of preparations from South and West India), presented with a focus on historical context and cultural lineage.

Enrollment Limit: 500

two brothers smiling

An Evening with Harry Yoon ’93, Film Editor of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

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Are you a fan of movies, superheroes, or the martial arts? The Williams Asian & Asian American Alumni Network (WAAAAN) cordially invites you to “A Talk with Harry Yoon ’93, Film Editor of Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” the latest film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Please join us to hear about Harry’s experiences with the film, and his work after Minari, the Academy-Award nominated 2020 film and recipient of Best Foreign Language Film in the 78th Golden Globes. The talk will be moderated by Angela Yu ’20, a member of WAAAAN Steering Committee, and Lindsay Wang ’24, a current Williams Sophomore. There will be an opportunity for audience questions.

To avoid spoilers during the event, WAAAAN recommends watching Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings before the event at your nearest movie theater.

Harry Yoon '93 wearing blue shirt and smiling

Addressing Climate Change with Private Sector Solutions

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Join former Nature Conservancy CEO and current Williams Trustee Mark Tercek ’79 in conversation with Ralph Bradburd, David A. Wells Professor of Political Economy, as they discuss the intersection of environmental, financial, and business challenges and opportunities. As the world changes, how are business leaders tackling ambitious green goals in concrete, achievable, and collaborative ways? Which federal policies and sustainability initiatives are encouraging the private sector of today to become the environmental advocates of tomorrow? And what does the future hold for green infrastructure, decarbonization, electric transportation, and more?

Two men smiling, business attire

BiGLATA Presents “LGBTQ+ Williams Bicentennial Storytime” featuring Alumni of the ’00s and ’10s

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As part of our programming and in line with the Bicentennial theme, “There’s a place for you,” we are exploring the experiences of LGBTQ+ alumni over the past 200 years at Williams.

Our 00s and 10s alumni panel will include members of those class years in conversation with each other and moderators from BiGLATA’s Executive Committee.

We are so excited and honored to hear more stories and experiences from within our community — and we hope these panels will be a great opportunity for us all to gain insight into what life has been like overtime in the purple bubble & beyond.

Chapin Hall

Purple Prose Author Talk: Stacy Schiff ’82

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Pick up your copy of our August-October “All Alum-Authors” reading selection Cleopatra: A Life, and register now for a special talk featuring the Pulitzer Prize-winning author Stacy Schiff ’82 in conversation with Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature Amal Eqeiq. Prof. Eqeiq teaches courses like “Arab Women Memoirs: Writing Feminist History” and “Arab Women Writers: Remapping Urban Narratives” at Williams.

You do not need to be a member of Purple Prose: A Book Club for Ephs to attend this author talk, but you can join the online forum at any time to connect with fellow alumni and members of the Eph community as we read and discuss Cleopatra: A Life from August 6 to October 8. Participation in Purple Prose Book Club is free – you just need a copy of the book!

Stacy Schiff, Author of Cleopatra with Book Cover

Back to School | EPHS 203 “Knitting Stranded Colorwork” with Ashley Weeks Cart ’05

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Lifelong knitter and skilled creative Ashley Weeks Cart ’05 will lead an advanced knitting class with her custom-designed “Climb High, Climb Far” fair isle hat pattern, with current student Isabel Bushway ’23. While this workshop is intended for experienced knitters, beginners are welcome to attend to be in community with fellow Eph creators. (Attendees are encouraged to show off their coolest Williams’ knit and crochet creations!) Pattern, handouts, and recommended materials will be sent to registrants in advance.

Instructor: Ashley Weeks Cart ’05 is a mother to many dependents of the human and canine variety, a Berkshire-based artist specializing in outdoor family and portrait photography, an extroverted feeler, and an obsessive knitter. She has a BA in Art from Williams College and a MA in Curatorial Practices and the Public Sphere from the University of Southern California. Ashley has been knitting since she was eight years old, thanks to her Grammy.

Enrollment Limit: 500

Woman wearing knit hat, smiling

Presidential Zoomcast with Maud S. Mandel

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As the 2021-22 academic year begins in Williamstown, join President Maud S. Mandel in conversation with Kate Boyle Ramsdell ’97, President of the Society of Alumni. Maud will reflect on a broad range of campus updates, including the college’s strategic plans and continued pandemic response. Maud and Kate look forward to hearing what’s on your mind, too, by fielding your questions during the Community Q&A.
President Maud Mandel smiling, wearing a black blazer and blue top

Epholution: 200 Years of History, Nostalgia & Memory

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Take a trip through time to explore the first 200 years of the Society of Alumni. We’ll wend our way through the years and stop for a visit at a few key eras: from our remarkable founding in 1821, to key moments of change, to where we are today, to where we hope to be tomorrow.

Drawing from history preserved in the archives, nostalgia captured by photographs and letters, and memory passed on by those who lived it, this event will celebrate our shared and ever-evolving story as we reflect on our past and chart our collective future.

Presented by the Archival Committee for the SoA Bicentennial.

historical signatures extracted from book

Mid-Autumn Moon Festival with WAAAAN

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Come gather with the Williams Asian & Asian American Alumni Network (WAAAAN), Kevin Flaherty, Williams College Lecturer in Astronomy and Observatory Supervisor, and Muzhou Lu ’13, Space Operations Engineer at SpaceX, in an evening of celebration and learning as we connect with friends near and far and reflect on the harmony and unity the moon represents. Learn about the brightest celestial object in our night sky and test your moon knowledge in a Moon Trivia Contest to win the chance of receiving a box of Mooncakes! (Honor code applies). We hope you can join us and share in the meaning of this important celebration! All are welcome – alums, students, and kids too!

Image of the moon taken with a Williams College telescope

Back to School | EPHS 219 “Baking & Making Grilled Honeybuns” with Geraldine Shen ’01

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Home baking enthusiast Geraldine Shen ’01 will walk us through the process of making Williams’ famous grilled honeybuns and help us use up some of that bread flour we panic-procured in the last year. Attendees are welcome to bake along in real time and ask questions to get started on their honeybuns during this interactive session, or simply enjoy watching the demonstration! Recipe and materials list will be sent to registrants in advance.

Instructor: Geraldine Shen ’01 has been tending to her incorrigible sweet tooth since her childhood in Vienna, Austria. Inspired by the pastries and cakes she’s sampled growing up in Europe and Asia, Geraldine has attempted to recreate all manner of baked goods at home. From sculpted fondant decorations for her three daughters’ birthday cakes, to mousse cakes, bread, and puff pastry, Geraldine loves baking to share with family, friends, and neighbors in Williamstown. She has a BA in Asian Studies from Williams College and a MA Ed in International Comparative Education from Stanford University.

Enrollment Limit: 500

Woman smiling wearing red shirt

Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife with Barbara Bradley Hagerty ’81

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Join Barbara Bradley Hagerty ’81, in conversation with Dennis O’Shea ’77, for a talk on her most recent book, Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife. In Life Reimagined, Barbara explains that midlife is about renewal: It’s the time to renegotiate your purpose, refocus your relationships, and transform the way you think about the world and yourself. Barbara is a New York Times best-selling author, contributing editor to the Atlantic, and a former NPR correspondent for 18 years, most recently covering religion. She received the American Women in Radio and Television Award (twice) for her religion reporting, as well as the National Headliners Award, and the Religion Newswriters Association Award.

Smiling author next to bright yellow book cover

The Gifts of Summer: July & August Mini-Retreats

Join facilitator Liana Thompson Knight ’01 for two-hour mini-retreats this July and August using the metaphor of summer’s gifts as an entry point to deep reflection, stillness and renewal. Sessions will include both conversation and opportunity for reflective practice (writing, drawing…) Your reflections will be grounded in your own experience, fueled by insights from poets and other artists. Attend one session or both; they will be related but independent.

July 28 | 12:00pm – 2:00pm ET
August 10 | 7:00pm – 9:00pm ET

Liana Thompson Knight ’01 is a Circle of Trust® facilitator prepared by the Center for Courage & Renewal®.

Liana Thompson Knight headshot

Purple Prose Author Talk: Amanda Eyre Ward ’94

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Grab your copy of our summer “All Alum-Authors” reading selection The Jetsetters, and register now for a special talk featuring the New York Times bestselling author Amanda Eyre Ward ’94 in conversation with writer and life coach Zahie El Kouri ’93. You do not need to be a member of Purple Prose: A Book Club for Ephs to attend this author talk, but you can join the online forum at any time to connect with fellow alumni and members of the Eph community as we read and discuss The Jetsetters from May 27  to July 30. Participation in Purple Prose Book Club is free – you just need a copy of the book!

Amanda and Zahie headshots with Jetsetters bright yellow book cover

Williams @ Work – Travel Outlook for a Post-Pandemic World

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After more than a year of lockdowns, stay-at-home orders and cancelled trips, it’s clear that consumers are eager to begin traveling again once vaccines are widely distributed. Despite pent-up demand among business and leisure travelers alike, habits and behaviors acquired during Covid times – not to mention the psychological impact of the past year – will certainly impact the way people move about the world in the pandemic’s wake. Three alumni with deep expertise in various facets of the industry will help us unpack the trends that are already emerging and their short- and long-term impact on travel and tourism.

Jennifer Washburne ’86 is the director of business development & client management at Generali Global Assistance, which includes travel insurance and assistance among its care services.

Jeninne Lee-St. John ’98 is the editor-in-chief of Travel + Leisure Southeast Asia. From her base in Bangkok, she oversees the magazine’s coverage of destinations, hotels, food and drink, culture and other travel news across Asia-Pacific.

Mark Rothman ’05 is the CEO of Magma Global, a luxury and corporate travel concierge with offices in New York and Los Angeles.

Dwelling of the Gallant

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The act of dwelling – taking up space and creating space for others – is the cornerstone of the college experience. For the women who first came to Williams, dwelling was an act of gallantry, an act of intellectual curiosity and an act of love. In celebration of the Bicentennial of the Society of Alumni and 50 years of coeducation, join us for powerful reflections and discussion among four Williams women who have charted fascinating personal and professional paths forward–

Meg Lowman ’76 serves as Director of TREE Foundation and as a National Geographic Explorer.

Adrena Ifill ’91 is an award-winning communications entrepreneur and producer who connects storytelling and advocacy.

Jiayang Fan ’06 has been a staff writer at the New Yorker since 2016, writing and reporting on China, American politics, and culture.

Jessica Bernheim ’16 serves as Head of New Product Development for North America at Upfield, a global plant-based food company.

Past Dwelling of the Gallant events: 201520162017, 20182019, 2020

Composite of four smiling headshots

Global Gatheround Networking Event

Gather with Ephs around the globe on Tuesday, June 15 at 8:00 a.m. ET. We will meet virtually for casual one-on-one networking sessions, giving you the opportunity to meet many Ephs (alums, parents and families) from around the world.

You will receive the link to the event in your week-of reminder email. For now, please register and save the date!

Questions? Contact [email protected]

Purple Cow graphic with white world map overlay as spots

199th Annual Meeting of the Society of Alumni

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We’ve reached a seminal moment in the Bicentennial of the Society of Alumni, and we invite you to join Society President Kate Boyle Ramsdell ’97, who will lead an Annual Meeting befitting the celebration of our alumni community.  She’ll be joined by fellow alumni who will share messages and music honoring our history and commitment to each other and Williams. Whether you are in this year’s Reunion cycle – or also pining for a return to campus – we hope you’ll tune in for the festivities!

balloons

Piano Bar Sing-along with Dan Krass ’05

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Hop on over to Facebook to enjoy an hour of live music performed by Dan Krass ’05. Requests welcome! Singing of “The Mountains” at 9:30 p.m. ET.

Dan Krass singing at a piano

A Conversation with Williams President Maud S. Mandel

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Join Williams President Maud S. Mandel in conversation with Kate Boyle Ramsdell ’97, President of the Society of Alumni. Maud will reflect on this past academic year and share insights on the college’s hopes and aspirations for the fall as it moves forward through the pandemic. Maud and Kate look forward to hearing what’s on your mind by fielding your questions, too.

President Maud Mandel smiling, wearing a black blazer and blue top

Leading in Time of Change

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Among the defining realities of the past year were a global pandemic, a racial reckoning and a democracy in question. What do three Williams College alumni who are seasoned executives of complex organizations have to say about leading through times of national and global upheaval? How do the defining moments of our time influence their approach to evolving and transforming their respective organizations? What discoveries have they made about themselves and their organizations while leading through change?

Join us for a conversation moderated by President Maud S. Mandel, featuring:

Adena Testa Friedman ’91, President & CEO Nasdaq

Jonathan Kraft ’86, President of the Kraft Group

Clarence Otis Jr. ’77, Retired CEO of Darden Restaurants and Current Board of Director for Verizon Communications, VF Corporation, Travelers, MSF Funds, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Boys and Girls Clubs of America

BiGLATA Presents “LGBTQ+ Williams Bicentennial Storytime” featuring Alumni of the ’80s and ’90s

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As part of our programming and in line with the Bicentennial theme, “There’s a place for you”, we are exploring the experiences of LGBTQ+ alumni over the past 200 years at Williams.

Our ’80s and ’90s alumni panel will include Christopher Kerby ’81, Bree Dietly ’82, Chef Tim E. Shaw ’89, Walter Cheng ’97, Dena Luna Zaldua ’98, and Jack/ie Vimo ’99.

We are so excited and honored to hear more stories and experiences from within our community — and we hope these panels will be a great opportunity for us all to gain insight into what life has been like over time in the purple bubble & beyond.

Reunion 2021: Community in the Bicentennial

As we enter Commencement & Reunion season, we celebrate COMMUNITY, and the many ways we cultivate who we are to each other. In this spirit, join us for a series of live virtual programs throughout the month of June. We look forward to when we can welcome you back to Williamstown, but in the meantime, we continue to connect and build community, no matter the distance.

Tuesday, June 8 @ 8:00 pm ET
Leading in Time of Change

Thursday, June 10 @ 12:00 pm ET
A Conversation with Williams President Maud S. Mandel

Thursday, June 10 @ 9:00 pm ET
Piano Bar Sing-along with Dan Krass ’05

Friday, June 11 @ 12:00 pm ET
199th Meeting of the Society of Alumni

Tuesday, June 15 @ 8:00 am ET
Global Gatheround Networking Event

Thursday, June 17 @ 12:00 pm ET
Dwelling of the Gallant

Wednesday, June 23 @ 12:00 pm ET
Williams @ Work Webinar – Travel Outlook for a Post-Pandemic World

purple spot graphic with text that reads as June, Community. As we welcome the Class of 2021 to our alumni family, we celebrate and examine who we are as a community and the many ways we cultivate who we are to each other.

Williams Comedy Night

Enjoy an evening of laughter and entertainment with some of Williams’ funniest alums– including J-L Cauvin ’01, CC Hexe ’06Brandi Brown ’07, Allison Mick ’08, Kilo Martin ’12, and Ashley Ray ’13 — hosted by Actually Good Videos founder Ariana Ross ’17.

Maximum attendance of 500 participants. Bring your sense of humor and the expectation that everything is fair game for Comedy Night! Please note that the comedy showcase is appropriate for Ephs 18 and older.

Headshots of comedians, smiling and laughing

Williams Women in Arts Leadership

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Join Pamela Franks, Class of 1956 Director at the Williams College Museum of Art, in conversation with Williams women making significant contributions to the art and museum world through their leadership — including Lucinda Barnes MA’78, Laura Hoptman ’83, Shamim M. Momin ’95, Sasha Suda MA’05, Victoria Sancho Lobis MA’02, and Sarah Needham ’08. We are excited to celebrate and discuss their experiences in this year marking 50 years of co-education at Williams, and the upcoming 50th anniversary of the Graduate Program in the History of Art.

Lucinda Barnes MA’78, Curator Emerita and former Chief Curator and Director of Programs and Collections at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive

Laura Hoptman ’83, Executive Director of The Drawing Center

Shamim M. Momin ’95, Director of Curatorial Affairs, Henry Art Gallery

Sasha Suda MA’05, Director & CEO, National Gallery of Canada

Victoria Sancho Lobis MA’02, Sarah Rempel and Herbert S. Rempel ’23 Director, Benton Museum of Art at Pomona College; Associate Professor of Art History, Pomona College

Sarah Needham ’08, Executive Director of the Hill Art Foundation

WCMA Eyes

Bicentennial Medalist in Conversation: Nancy Baker Cahill ’92

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Established in 1993 on the occasion of the college’s 200th anniversary, Bicentennial Medals honor members of the Williams community for distinguished achievement in any field of endeavor. The program, reimagined this year for a digital environment and the Society of Alumni Bicentennial, will feature each medalist honoree in conversation with a contemporary.

In this Bicentennial Medalist event, hear Nancy Baker Cahill ’92, founder and artistic director of 4th Wall — a free augmented reality public art platform exploring resistance and inclusive creative expression — in conversation with media scholar and author Ethan Zuckerman ’93.

Nancy Baker Cahill photo, looking off into distance

Williams College Association of Maryland Presents “Critical Race Theory and Policing” with Raff Donelson ’09

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Williams College Association of Maryland invites Williams alumni and parents to join us for an online discussion entitled “Critical Race Theory and Policing” with Raff Donelson ’09, Assistant Professor of Law at Penn State Dickinson Law. His research and teaching focus on constitutional law, criminal procedure, and legal philosophy.

Professor Donelson’s more theoretical research interests include metaethics and general jurisprudence, while his doctrinal work focuses on constitutional protections for criminals and the accused. His scholarship is featured or forthcoming in law reviews, philosophy journals, and edited collections by respected academic presses. In 2017, Donelson was interviewed for Legal-Phi, an online venue featuring work on rising stars in the field of legal philosophy. Prior to joining Dickinson Law, Professor Donelson was Assistant Professor of Law and Philosophy at Louisiana State University. There, Professor Donelson served on the advisory board for the LSU Institute for Ethics and directed the Philosophy Department’s program in Law, Ethics, and Social Justice. Professor Donelson earned a JD-PhD from Northwestern University, an MA from the University of Chicago, and a BA from Williams College.

Questions? Contact Jason Poling ’94 at [email protected]

Raff Donelson smiling with water and fence in background

1979 Presents a Discussion with Steve Rogers ’79, Author of “A Letter to My White Friends and Colleagues”

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Please join us on May 6th at 8:00 pm EDT for a talk with Steve Rogers ’79 on his new book, A Letter to My White Friends and Colleagues: What You Can Do Right Now to Help the Black Community. Sponsored by the Class of 1979, this topical discussion is open to the entire Williams Community.

Steven Rogers retired from Harvard Business School in 2019 where he was the “MBA Class of 1957 Senior Lecturer” in General Management. He taught Entrepreneurial Finance and a new course that he created, titled “Black Business Leaders and Entrepreneurship.” He graduated in 1979 from Williams College and is a graduate of Harvard Business School. Prior to teaching at HBS, Professor Rogers taught in the MBA and PhD programs at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. He received the Outstanding Professor Award for the Executive MBA Program 26 times and daytime program twice. He received the ‘Bicentennial Medal for Distinguished Achievement’ by an alum from Williams College, and Ebony Magazine named him one of the top 150 influential people in America. Professor Rogers has served as a Trustee for Williams College, and the Visiting Committee for HBS.

WBAN & WAAAAN Present “Racial Disparities in Mental Healthcare & Wellness”

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Bernice Hutchinson ’81, Vidisha Patel ’85, and Michaela Kearney ’15 are joined by Michael Gadson ’79 and Michele Rogers ’79 during National Mental Health Awareness Month to discuss mental health and wellness, barriers to care, and the compounding impact of COVID-19 on mental health nationally.

Quad of Speaker Headshots Smiling

The Art of Aging: Challenges and Opportunities Across Generations

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From the moment of birth, everyone is aging. Across the lifespan, as we age, we rely on each other for knowledge, resources, and support, and there are some times when we give more, and other times when we need more. In this conversation, Washington University Professor Brian Carpenter ’86 will discuss the later years of our lives, typical patterns of change, and common sources of stress and uplift as families work together to maximize well being for everyone involved.

Brian D. Carpenter, PhD, is a Professor of Psychological & Brain Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis. He received a B.A. in psychology and English from Williams College and a doctorate in clinical psychology from Case Western Reserve University, followed by postdoctoral training in geropsychology at the University of Pennsylvania and in palliative care at the Portland Oregon VA Healthcare System. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses that focus on aging and the end of life. He also directs a research laboratory that studies ways to improve communication between older adults, their family members, and their healthcare providers.

Brian Carpenter

QSU x BiGLATA Presents “LGBTQ+ Williams Bicentennial Storytime” featuring Alumni of the ’60s and ’70s

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BiGLATA and current QSU students invite the Williams alumni community to a panel discussion featuring LGBTQ+ alums of the 1960s and 1970s: Mike Dively ’61, Stephen Rosenbaum ’69, Rives Kistler ’71, Dan Pinello ’72, Lisa Capaldini ’78, and Lucy Bledsoe ’79.

What are the stories of LGBTQ+ Ephs? When Dan Pinello ’72 came out in the Williams Advocate in October of ’71 and invited fellow LGBTQ+ students to form a Gay Liberation Chapter, what was the response? How has the LGBTQ+ experience at Williams evolved over the decades? Panelists will answer these questions and more, sharing reflections on a variety of subjects including personal journeys since graduation and how our community can continue to make Williams a more equitable and inclusive place.

The conversation will be moderated by Monserrat Muñoz ’09 and Mijon Zulu ’09 with some pre-selected questions before opening up to audience Q&A.

WAAAAN Presents A Talk with Harry Yoon ’93, Film Editor of Minari

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Grab a tub of popcorn and a glass of champagne, maybe even put on your Red Carpet best! The Williams Asian & Asian American Alumni Network cordially invites you to A Talk with Harry Yoon ’93, Film Editor of Minari, a powerful immigrant tale that has been sweeping up film awards and is nominated for six Oscars!

Join us to hear about Harry’s experiences in Hollywood and with this film and to send him good luck vibes, in our very own virtual Oscar Pre-Party (since the Oscars are the next day). The talk will be moderated by Kevin Lee ’97, Professor of Crossmedia Publishing at the Merz Akademie in Stuttgart, Germany and Jeongyoon Han ’21, a current Williams senior.

All are welcome, and there will be an opportunity for audience questions. To avoid spoilers during the event, WAAAAN highly recommends you watch Minari before the event. Minari can be rented/streamed through A24, Amazon Prime, Google Play, Vudu, Redbox, and Direct TV or through Images Cinema’s Virtual Library.

Harry Yoon '93 wearing blue shirt and smiling

Expressive Art & Wellness: Connecting to Nature with Chenoweth Stites Allen ’92

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Celebrate Earth Day with this interactive workshop that invites you to imagine and express your connection to nature. How has nature informed this past year for you? When have you been restored by the outdoors? Do you, in turn, feel a greater commitment to nurture the earth? We will have time to create, share and dream of healing and wholeness for ourselves and our world.

All you need to participate is a pen or pencil and paper. Colored pencils, markers, crayons, oil pastels or watercolor paints could be a fun addition, but are not needed! No artistic ability necessary – just a willingness to embrace your own creativity.

Chenoweth Stites Allen

Bicentennial Medalist in Conversation: Craig Smith ’70

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Established in 1993 on the occasion of the college’s 200th anniversary, Bicentennial Medals honor members of the Williams community for distinguished achievement in any field of endeavor. The program, reimagined this year for a digital environment and the Society of Alumni Bicentennial, will feature each medalist honoree in conversation with a contemporary.

In this Bicentennial Medalist event, hear Dr. Craig Smith ’70, Chair of the Department of Surgery at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, discuss public health, empathy, and leadership in a pandemic with Professor Tara Watson.

Dr. Craig Smith ’70 wrote updates to faculty and staff about response and priorities in the early months of the pandemic which inspired those in his care and a broader society searching for understanding and leadership. Read all of Dr. Smith’s writings here: https://columbiasurgery.org/news/updates-dr-smith

Craig Smith

WBAN Presents “Racial Disparities in Healthcare”

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Dr. Oge Uwanaka ’16, Professor Jallicia Jolly ’14 and Dr. Greg Hall ’83 are joined by Dr. Ken Alleyne ’88 during Black Maternal Health Week and National Minority Health Month to discuss health disparities in the United States, maternal health outcomes, and the ways in which COVID-19 has further revealed the weaknesses in our healthcare systems.

Puzzles in Purple: Williamsiana Trivia

So, you think you know something about Williamsiana? Well, let’s find out! Join us on April 10th, 2021 at 8:00-9:30pm EST for pub-style trivia. Commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Society of Alumni of Williams College, this trivia event is brought to you by a hearty band of Eph alums and students!

Participation in this event does NOT require registration for Puzzles in Purple and is a standalone event. Puzzles in Purple participants should know that there will be an answer embedded in the trivia event. Details to follow.

ENROLLMENT LIMIT: 300 participants, and registration is first come, first served!

Questions? Feel free to reach out to Michael Rodriguez ’17 at [email protected]

Purple puzzle

1975 Presents Recollections of Williams’ First Entering Class of Women: Looking Back…And Looking Forward

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Martha Coakley ’75 moderates a panel of ’75 alumnae, Suzanne Fluhr,  Robyn Geissler, Jacqueline Laughlin, Nancy Reece Jones, and Lisa Harris as they discuss their experiences at Williams beginning fifty years ago in the fall of 1971, and the journeys they have taken since.

As the first class of women to enter as “frosh,” they were part of Williams’ efforts to grow and diversify the student body. You are invited to hear and join this discussion, the first of many from the Class of ’75 devoted to addressing issues of gender and diversity at Williams, and their impact beyond Williamstown.

coeducational class on steps

Bicentennial Medalist in Conversation: Jason Hehir ’98

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Established in 1993 on the occasion of the college’s 200th anniversary, Bicentennial Medals honor members of the Williams community for distinguished achievement in any field of endeavor. The program, reimagined this year for a digital environment and the Society of Alumni Bicentennial, will feature each medalist honoree in conversation with a contemporary.

In this Bicentennial Medalist event, hear from Jason Hehir ’98 and acclaimed sportswriter Tim Layden ’78 in conversation. Jason Hehir is a seven-time Emmy-winning director and producer whose 2020 series The Last Dance chronicled the Chicago Bulls dynasty and Michael Jordan’s career. At the close of the program, President Maud S. Mandel will confer the college’s Bicentennial Medal to Jason.

Jason Hehir

Williams College Association of Maryland Presents “Student Learning Outcomes in the Wake of COVID-19” with Melissa Osborne Groves ’93

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Dr. Melissa Groves is an Associate Professor of Economics at Towson University. Her research focuses on better understanding the naturalization decision of US immigrants as well as on the importance of personality in the labor market. Her work has been published in the Review of Social Sciences, American Economic Review, Journal of Economic Psychology and the Journal of Economic Literature as well as in her co-edited book, “Unequal Chances: Family Background and Economics Status”.

Dr. Groves is also passionate about financial literacy and has worked for the past twelve years with the Maryland Council on Economic Education and the Maryland Coalition for Financial Literacy teaching workshops for elementary, middle and high school teachers to help them integrate economics and financial literacy knowledge into the curriculum. She earned a B.A. in Economics from Williams College and a PhD from UMass Amherst.

Melissa Groves

Today and Tomorrow: A Time Capsule Project

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What would it be like to jump into the future and tell people what this unprecedented time has been like for us? How would we create a history out of the present? And how can we represent the moment knowing that tomorrow’s audience might not share our perspectives? These are some of the questions students of the Theatre Department will ask as they create a digital performance time capsule and an accompanying physical “artifact” of the year 2021 drawing from theatre, dance, puppetry, poetry, the visual arts, and music. Students will work with Theatre Department faculty members Amy Holzapfel and Shanti Pillai and an interdisciplinary group of professional artists. The digital performance and artifact will be presented to the Williams community, April 23-25. The materials will then reside at the Williams Archives from where they will emerge (again) for students, faculty, staff, and alumni in 2041.

Theatre Department Scenic

Purple Prose Book Club: The Unwinding of the Miracle

Reading Period: March 18, 2021 to May 20, 2021

Join our virtual book club to connect with fellow Williams alumni and members of the Eph community as we read and discuss various book genres, including novels, lifelong learning, personal growth and more! The book club will read one book every two months so that you will have plenty of time for each book.

In celebration of the Bicentennial milestone and all things #WilliamsAlumni200, we are excited to announce a very special “All Alum-Authors” Year of Purple Prose! Yes, you read that correctly: an entire year dedicated to reading works written by Ephs!

Our March 2021 to May 2021 selection is The Unwinding of the Miracle by Julie Yip-Williams ’97. Participation in the text-based online discussion is free – you just need a copy of the book!

Unwinding of the Miracle book cover

Purple Prose Book Club: Just Us

Reading Period: January 7, 2021 to March 11, 2021

Join our virtual book club to connect with fellow Williams alumni and members of the Eph community as we read and discuss various book genres, including novels, lifelong learning, personal growth and more! The book club will read one book every two months so that you will have plenty of time for each book.

In celebration of the Bicentennial milestone and all things #WilliamsAlumni200, we are excited to announce a very special “All Alum-Authors” Year of Purple Prose! Yes, you read that correctly: an entire year dedicated to reading works written by Ephs!

Our January 2021 to March 2021 selection is Just Us: An American Conversation by Claudia Rankine ’86. Participation in the text-based online discussion is free – you just need a copy of the book!

Claudia Rankine Just Us

Women in the Society of Alumni

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Celebrate International Women’s Day, Women’s History Month, and 50 years of Williams co-education with a panel discussion moderated by Williams Trustee and former Society of Alumni (SoA) President Leila Jere ’91. Joining Leila in conversation will be current SoA President Kate Boyle Ramsdell ’97, current SoA Executive Committee member and WBAN member Katherine Sharpe ’79, and former SoA Executive Committee member and BiGLATA member Cat Vielma ’10.

Panelists will speak to several questions, addressing the ways in which alumnae have pushed the Society of Alumni to be more inclusive, expansive, and interconnected. How has the alumni body and its values have changed over time, reflected in the matriculation of Williams women in 1971 and, later, the addition of female voices to the Board of Trustees, the SoA Executive Committee, and Williams Alumni Networks’ executive boards? This event is also an opportunity to consider and discuss in open forum the work still to be done in the Society of Alumni toward gender equity, gap closure, and an inclusive definition of Women of Williams. This panel promises to be part celebration, part critical reflection, and part forward momentum.

Leila Jere

WAAAAN Presents Hand-Pulled Noodles with Hannah Wong ’08

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Join Chef Hannah Wong ’08 in her kitchen as she demonstrates how to prepare hand-pulled noodles, also called lamian in Chinese. This unique method of making noodles originated in China, where hand-pulled noodles are traditionally served on Lunar New Year to symbolize a long life ahead. In addition to a live cooking demo, Hannah will share how her identity, journey, and passions inform her fight for a more expansive and equitable vision of the culinary field and beyond. Participants will also have a chance to learn about two organizations that Hannah is involved in: The Level Up Project, a virtual education initiative and network of individuals committed to removing systemic barriers, and Heart of Dinner, a non-profit combating food insecurity and isolation in New York City’s elderly Asian American community.

Planning to cook alongside Hannah? We recommend making the dough in advance (ideally day-of). You can find the ingredients and recipe here.

This event is organized and sponsored by WAAAAN, the Williams Asian & Asian American Alumni Network.

Hannah Wong

Williams Boston Association Presents “The Power of Dance Practice” with Véronëque Ignace ’15

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“Embodying History, Narrative, and Social Action: The Power of Dance Practice with Véronëque Ignace ’15”

Community organizer and performing artist, Véronëque Ignace ’15, will share some of her work on historical and cultural healing through a movement-based workshop showcasing Haitian dance. The workshop will be modeled off a project she developed in collaboration with several artists, The Nou Series: An Embodied History and Body Installation Project. The project explored the historical memories and narratives of communities in Brooklyn, NY, formed by the black diaspora, and as related to the landmarked Wyckoff House, through dance and movement.

headshot-Véronëque

Bicentennial Medalist in Conversation: Chaédria LaBouvier ’07

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Established in 1993 on the occasion of the college’s 200th anniversary, Bicentennial Medals honor members of the Williams community for distinguished achievement in any field of endeavor. The program, reimagined this year for a digital environment and the Society of Alumni Bicentennial, will feature each medalist honoree in conversation with a contemporary.

In this Bicentennial Medalist event, hear from curator, art historian, writer Chaédria LaBouvier ’07, in conversation with Lisa Dorin MA’00, WCMA’s Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs and Curator of Contemporary Art. LaBouvier is the first Black curator, first Black woman, first curator of Cuban descent and first Black author of a catalogue in the Guggenheim’s 80 year history, with her exhibition, “Basquiat’s Defacement: The Untold Story.”

Chaedria LaBouvier

1975 Presents Recollections of the Black Student Experience

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In honor of Black History Month, alumni Mike Reed ’75, Jackie Laughlin (Meadows) ’75, Frank (Rick) Richards ’75, Lezli White ’75, Delbert Wigfall ’75, and Hardin Coleman ’75 will share some remembrances of their singular Williams experiences. Participants are invited to dialogue with the presenters on their experiences of race at Williams.

This event is organized and sponsored by the Class of 1975.

1975 Homecoming

Davis Center: A Conversation featuring President Maud S. Mandel

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President Maud S. Mandel will facilitate a conversation about the Davis Center (formerly the Multicultural Center) with staff, faculty, and student representatives who lead the vital work of the DC at Williams. They will share their experiences along with goals and plans for the DC in the short and long term, including a vision for a renewed and revitalized DC physical plan on the horizon.

Panelists Include:
– Carmen Whalen, Carl W. Vogt ’58 Professor of History & Faculty Fellow of the Davis Center and OIDEI
– Dominic Madera ’21, current student
– Eden-Reneé Hayes, Director of the Davis Center
– Leticia S.E. Haynes ’99, Vice President for Institutional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
– Mohammed Memfis ’21, current student

Davis Center

Claiming Williams Keynote: An Evening with Michelle Alexander

Join the Williams community for a moderated webinar featuring legal scholar Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. This event is organized and sponsored by the Claiming Williams Committee. The theme for Claiming Williams 2021 is “From Racial Injustice to Restoration” and aims to explore the ways in which structural racial inequities, racism, and bigotry on campus and in the wider world have shaped the Williams College experience.

Michelle Alexander

Claiming Williams: Events Open to Alumni

The theme for Claiming Williams 2021 is “From Racial Injustice to Restoration.” Throughout the day, we aim to explore the ways in which structural racial inequities, racism, and bigotry on campus and in the wider world have shaped the Williams College experience for students, faculty and staff.

Alumni are invited to be a part of the conversation this year. Please feel free to attend any of these programs:

On the Frontlines of Inequity: Williams Alumni in EDI

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Hear and learn from a panel of Williams alumni working professionally in EDI (equity, diversity, and inclusion) spaces: Leticia Smith-Evans Haynes ’99, Ali Michael ’00, Sharifa Wright ’03, and Sabine Chishty ’12. What are the individual experiences and challenges of doing this necessary work? What path brought these alums here professionally, and what have they learned along the way? What resources and actions do they most recommend to break down systems of oppression? And what opportunities do they see for the Williams community broadly to foster inclusive culture and a sense of belonging for all Ephs? This is a moment to listen and learn from those on the frontlines of systemic inequity.

Claiming Williams headshots

Williams College Assoc. of Maryland Presents “Leading a Community Through Its Reckoning with Racism” with Grey Maggiano ’03

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Rev. Grey Maggiano ‘03 has been the Rector of Memorial Episcopal Church in Baltimore since 2016. In the last five years he has helped the church and its surrounding neighborhood reckon with their racist past and the legacy of slavery in this part of Baltimore. They recently launched a $500,000 reparations initiative.

This event is organized and sponsored by the Williams College Association of Maryland.

Grey Maggiano

Belonging in the Bicentennial: Racial Literacy Workshop

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Join Williams College Distinguished Visiting Professor of Education, Kelsey M. Jones ’08, for an introduction to racial literacy. Expanding on the theme of belonging in the Bicentennial year and beyond, this interactive workshop will provide a safe and inclusive space for alumni to recognize, name, and respond to racial moments in daily life.

Kelsey Jones '08 Headshot

Bicentennial Premiere: There’s a Place For You

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Join us for the official live premiere of the Society of Alumni Bicentennial with special performances, reflective retrospection, messages and greetings from Ephs everywhere, and an open invitation to our entire community to celebrate this milestone!

balloons

Alumni Trivia Night

Please use this form to sign up for future trivia events!

Enjoy a fun and spirited hour-long evening of trivia, including a Williams-specific round! Recruit up to six teammates (yourself included!), play solo, or meet new Ephs on a randomized team!

Three students wearing masks are mid-air as they jump in front of a valley view.

Alumni Winter Study | EPHS 119 “Bridging Theory and Practice: Art-Inspired Yoga”

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This vinyasa-style yoga class takes inspiration from an untitled watercolor by Williams alumnus Tao Ho ’60 in the collection of the Williams College Museum of Art. The course aims to develop the wide range of skills needed to consider landscape, composition, and atmosphere from a multi-disciplinary perspective. We will practice close looking and experiential engagement through yoga-based movement patterns. Through this hour-long class, participants will have the opportunity to visually, aurally, and kinesthetically meditate with the watercolor. No yoga or art historical experience is necessary, and all bodies are welcome!

Instructor: Emily Kamen MA ’20, Art Historian & Yoga Teacher. Learn more about Emily and her Art-Inspired Yoga series organized by WCMA.

Enrollment Limit: 300

Emily Kamen

Alumni Winter Study | EPHS 117 “Creative Baking: A Community-Based Experience”

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Have you ever wondered why there are so few desserts that rival a Knock-You-Naked? How to achieve the proper ratio of caramel goodness? How to best spend your Sunday after we make these amazing treats together (answer: happily reminiscing with every bite)? These are some of the questions we will explore in this course, which introduces students to the discipline of Creative Baking. During this course we will: (1) read and discuss the recipe; (2) use case studies to examine how to bake a Knock-You-Naked properly; (3) develop a final product; (4) savor your just desserts.

Instructor: Christopher Sewell ’05 with BlackYardEph Bakery. Picked up as a hobby during the pandemic, Chris showcases his baking skills on a weekly basis on his BlackYardEph Bakery Instagram. In his professional capacity, he serves as Associate Dean of Students and Dean of First Year Students at Williams.

Enrollment Limit: 300

Chris Sewell

Alumni Winter Study | EPHS 114 “The Making and Unmaking of Purple Cocktails (and Mocktails)”

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This class utilizes the methods and theories of libation generation to help students design and pursue innovative beverage creation. Students will use an array of techniques such as mixing, shaking, and pouring to explore the benefits of collaborative and participatory research. Throughout the course, our goal is to better understand the strengths and limits of Purple Cocktails (and Mocktails) while considering how to improve our own mixology. Students will have the opportunity to create and present a final product.

Instructor: Ken Wyatt ’84 with 44° North® Vodka. In conjunction with his partner, Ron Zier, Ken worked to herald the beginning of the “local” spirit movement in the United States. The brand is presently in 40 states and has grown each year since release. Read more about Ken in this Idaho Business Review article.

Enrollment Limit: 300

Alumni Winter Study | EPHS 109 “Introduction to Family Storytelling”

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Anyone can be an author or an illustrator—or both. All you need is a piece of paper, a pair of scissors, a smidge of abandon, and even the slightest hint of something to say. Led by an author/illustrator duo who have spent the past two decades creating more than 80 indie and commercial books for children and adults, this class will explore creative process, collaboration, risk-taking, creative block, and the astonishing possibilities that emerge when the human mind joins forces with a simple sheet of paper. Together, we will make books while telling and sharing our stories—as all of us are meant to. (This course is appropriate for and open to anyone who is either old or young enough to hold a pen or pencil.)

Instructors: Robbi Behr ’97 & Matthew Swanson ’97, Professional Author/Illustrator Duo. To learn more about their work or watch their daily, 60-second videos, you can find Robbi and Matt on YouTube, Instagram, or Facebook.

Enrollment Limit: 300

Robbi and Matthew