Williams Alumni Stories

Stories

Connect with other Ephs across generations and geographies through stories of what it means to be a Williams alum—and what we mean to each other.

We hope that you will take a moment to tell your own story, however you define it.

Man in hat propped up in bed with 50th Reunion paraphernalia on his chest

Alumni across the world helped Bob Mist ’44 recover from a devastating injury

A brief update in the class notes section of the alumni magazine led to an outpouring of support well beyond classmates and a profound gratitude for the power of the Williams network.

Black and White photo of man in suit and tie from chest up

Increasing Understanding of Arabic Language and Culture

Coming to Williams from Saudi Arabia in the 1950s dramatically changed Al Wohabe’s perspective. Today his family honors his memory by helping Ephs explore the world.

Black and White headshot of a man in glasses and a suit and tie

A Full Life

John K. Notz Jr. ’53 recounts the ongoing influence of Williams on his life.

Black and white photo of Michael Rosenblum in front of video camera

Becoming the Gaudino Model

Experiential education changed Michael Rosenblum’s ’76 education—at Williams and beyond

Bob Sillcox yearbook

Where You Must Apply

Bob Sillcox ’53 chose Williams on the advice of his older sisters.

Jason Hehir

Distinguished Achievement in Sports Journalism

Bicentennial Medalist Jason Hehir ’98 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.

Photo of Cole Field at First light

Support During the Pandemic

Jeffrey Etemad ’89 helped a new grad in her career exploration.

C David Petersen and his fraternity brothers

Anchor to an Era

C David Petersen ’53 recounts a full life and his cherished Williams friendships.

Celeste Berg '13 and husband Andrew Gaidus '11

Ongoing Intellectual Curiosity

Celeste Berg ’13 is grateful for Williams connections through lifelong friends, career opportunities and family members.

person wearing a mask and eyeglasses in a blue apron, holding a sign with cutout cows and text that reads as 'one step closer to herd immooooooonity!!!.' There is a bookshelf full of books in the background.

Ephs on the Frontlines: A Year Later

A year later, Ann Marie Swann ’91 reflects on the challenge encountered with Covid-19 as a hospitalist and how she kept ‘moving forward.’

Wole Coaxum

Promoting Economic Justice

The son of Williams College’s first Black president of the Society of Alumni, Bicentennial Medalist Wole Coaxum ’92 left behind his managing director position at J.P. Morgan after Michael Brown was killed in Ferguson, MO. That event compelled him to think about how he could leverage his Wall Street experience and contacts to address the racial wealth gap.

Chaedria LaBouvier

Socially Engaged Scholarship

Bicentennial Medalist Chaédria LaBouvier ’07 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.”

Sally Blout

Threads of Purple

Frank Richards ’75 discovers his connection to Williams goes back to his great-grandmother.

Sculpture by Craig Biddle III

A Never-Ending Source of Joy

Craig Biddle III ’53 began his time at Williams idealistic and dreamy and went on to live a life full of ministry, nature, art and gratitude.

of Leila sitting down and posing for a photo.

A Serendipitous Journey

Leila Jere ’91 reflects on her unexpected journey as a student and the extended Williams family she has encountered both as an alum and volunteer.

two person face profiles smiling

Forever To Be Continued

Kallan Wood ’10 and Chloe Brown ’10 explore place and belonging and what it meant for these West Coasters to find “their people” in a small New England college town.

Morris Ernst '09

A Changed and Constant Brotherhood

One of the last students to join a fraternity, Norman Spack ’65 shares the transition to residence houses and how he brought some of the fraternity connections and traditions to the college’s new model.

Tim Hildreth and faculty member

Saved by Williams, More than Once

Tim Hildreth ’91 shares gratitude for three of the ways Williams shaped him.

person standing by a door smiling and pointing to sign on it that reads F303

Office Hours: Tatiana Cruz ’11

As a first-generation student and parent while at Williams, Tatiana Cruz ’11 shares her influences and journey into becoming a historian of race, gender, and social movements in modern U.S. culture with David Shakirov ’22.

Etienne Aduya

Building a More Inclusive Environment

Etienne Aduya ’15 shares his story as a gay, Black student athlete in the hopes that they will have a better experience than he did.

Biko outside CDE

A Broadened World, and Worldview

Sisters Danielle Bahr Eason ’98 and Talia Bahr Goldfarb ’94 expanded their Williams family through kinship with Abubaker Ali Ba Abbad CDE ‘17, a Yemeni student they met through Claiming Williams Day

Mace and one of her students

Becoming a Writer

In her own classroom, Mace Foehl ’85 shares lessons she learned from a favorite Williams professor.

Bob Whitton and his fiance

Lasting Connections

Bob Whitton ’69 found what he was looking for on a college visit in the ’60s.

of man sitting down and smiling.

Office Hours: Rory Kramer ’03

From growing up in Williamstown to realizing he was a sociologist on his road to becoming a professor, Shayan Moazeni ’22 chats with Rory Kramer ’03. Break-dance anyone?

Hiroko Imamura with her Husband Kamla

On sharing Williams and all that remains constant even amid change

Hiroko Imamura ’82, P’22, P’22 shares a path influenced by Williams experiences and connections throughout her career.

Louie Lafevre

Master of the Game

Brooks Goddard ’63 pays tribute to a favorite Williams friend.

Alex Deaderick headshot

Making Things Better

Alex Deaderick ’15 raised $25,000 to support the racial justice movement, thanks in large part to fellow Ephs.

the eyes at WCMA

A Place of Growth

Daphne Lurie ’83 remembers the magic of her time at Williams.

2019 Williams Graduates at Commencement

Looking to the Future

Steve Harty ’73 shares his beliefs in the next generation of Williams College students.

Jim Blume and Bill Whitney

A Serendipitous Friendship

Jim Blume ’63 had a friend at Williams before he set foot on campus.

lawrence hall

“I see something in you”

Peter D. Kiernan ’75 became a best-selling author, just as his Williams professor predicted he would.

Herbet Ogden on a Williams travel trip in Switzerland

Fifty Years of Eph Connections

Herbert Ogden ’69 measures his life in the varied circumstances of several Williams connections.

Andy Hess and his entrymates

A Career Launched at Williams

Andy Hess’ ’62 journey to college began with an overheard conversation.

Class Secretary Struggles Volume 1

Class Secretary Struggles: VOLUME 1

Begging for class notes is timeless…

Class Secretary Struggles Volume 2

Class Secretary Struggles: VOLUME 2

Begging for class notes is timeless…

Class Secretary Struggles Volume 3

Class Secretary Struggles: VOLUME 3

Begging for class notes is timeless…

Robin and William yearbook photos

Making Communities Better

A 1986 class meeting over Zoom leads to a new professional collaboration between William Leininger and Robin Flagg.

Alan and the soap bubble

Shelver, Driver, Switchboard Operator

Alan Dittrich ’69 remembers the campus jobs he held during his time at Williams.

Clive K (Hulick) Connor and her daughter

A Family Away from Home

Clive Connor ’75 remembers how reaching out to the alumni network resulted in helpful advice and a delicious shared meal.

Amanda Gallagher Yearbook Photo

A Tutorial that Almost Wasn’t

Amanda Gallagher ’90 remembers how a beloved professor insisted she take his class.

Bill Wadt at the Schilthorn looking towards the Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau in Switzerland

Chemistry Lessons

Bill Wadt ’70 credits a chemistry professor with launching him on a successful research career

Ryan in Williamstown

Well Rounded Thinkers

Ryan Farley ’16 joined a company who valued the liberal arts education and the perks included yearly recuiting trips to Williamstown.

Greg Williams and Friends golfing

Constant and Valued

Greg Williams ’73 made connections in Professor Steve Lewis’ Econ 101 class far beyond the curriculum.

1976 Williams Basketball Team

Leadership, intellect and humanity

Gerry Kelly ’79 recounts how his Morgan East JA and basketball teammate helped make his hometown a better place for physically disabled citizens.

Bill Jaume Yearbook photo

Coming Full Circle

A child of Cuba, Bill Jaume ’77 now supports other students from his home country with his gift to financial aid.

Protest March on Route 2

Contentious and Powerful

Kerrita Mayfield ’93 and Simeon Stolzberg ’92 reminisce about the activism and community-building they took part in as students, and how it has shaped their careers.

Williams Science Quad in fall foliage

Fleeting Highlights

Karen Bowen ’86 fondly recalls her time at Williams and one lasting friendship that took hold.

Kelsey sitting down

My Eph Story: Kelsey Roggensack ’13

“Williams is a whimsical place.”

Portrait of Peter McKelvey

“To those whom much has been given, much will be expected.”

Teaching a Winter Study course was Peter McKelvey ’86’s chance to “pay it forward.” It was the chance of a lifetime.

man wearing glasses and yellow sweater

My Eph Story: Todd Mauck ’53

Recalling the injustice of eight o’clock classes on Saturday morning and the deep bonds among Williams alumni.

An archival black-and-white photography of E. Kendall Gillet, who wears a sweater with the year 1908 across the chest.

Time Traveling Through Williams Alumni History

Leigh Winter Martin ’99 tells the story of E. Kendall Gillett, Class of 1908, just one of many Ephs she has “met” through her archival research for the Bicentennial.

Fireworks over Baxter Hall

Blowing Up Baxter Hall

Hugh Germanetti ’54 recounts saying goodbye to Baxter Hall as part of his class’s 50th reunion celebration.

A college yearbook photo of Kennedy Richardson.

A Great Intellectual Game

Kennedy Richardson ’71 turned the study of physics into a career managing an equity fund, always connecting his work back to lessons learned at Williams.

Women's Lacrosse Players from 2001

What Really Matters

Kate Leonard Hood ’03 learned an important life lesson thanks to Williams coach, Alix Barrale ’93.

Snowy view of the Purple Mountains

Teaching Winter Study Set Me on My Career Path

Teaching a Winter Study course in January 2009 set Amy Whitaker ’96 on her path as a middle-of-career college professor.

Laura and Colby

The Making of a Grand-Doctor

Laura Moberg Lavoie’s fellow 1999 classmate taught her doctor HOW to be a doctor. And then this doctor went on to deliver her child and save both of their lives.

Grey wearing a Williams hat

The Quirky and Whimsical

Tempted to get those purple boots? How about finding an Ephlats record at your local antique store? Did you keep that Winter Carnival jamboree poster? Explore what else fellow Ephs have been up to.

Melinda at Convocation

A Letter to the Class of 2020

A letter from Melinda Kan-Dapaah ’20 to her classmates.

Sad Stuffed Cow

“Is There Anyone Else Here Who Feels Like A Failure?”

This fall, Laurie Bennett ’99 posed the question, “Is there anyone else in the ‘I’m a loser’ Eph club?” in the “You Know You Went to Williams If…” Facebook group. The response was overwhelming.

Keep calm and carry on graphic.

From Williams to Woodberry Forest

Pat Bassett ’70 reminds us to “Keep Calm and Carry On.”

band equipment

Rob Farnham’s Ode to Ephdom

A reaction to the Williams Marching Band as one of endearment, and other Eph musings by Rob Farnham ’71.

An interior view of chapel bells

See If This Rings A Bell

Williams Alumni report meeting up in some unusual places, and that includes Josh Burson ’01 and fellow Eph carillonneurs.

Kate pictured at NPR

A Change of Course

A fellow Eph completely changed the course of Kate Stone Lombardi ’78’s career, but she didn’t find out about it until 40 years later.

Weston Language Lab

The Thrill of Giving Back

In 1983, Carol Buck Whitehead ’78 sent off her first small check to the Alumni Fund, and it marked the start of a lifelong friendship.

Person standing with Thumbs Up in front of Lecture Screen

Pretending it’s the ’90s again

For a few weeks each January, Rob Wittenmyer ’98 goes back in time with playlist.

A black and white photograph shows a young woman with her parents on either side of her.

Amongst the Most Lucid Prose in the English Language

Robert Kent ’84 fondly remembers the impact Clara and David Park had on his time at Williams.

Pinsi standing with parents in front of Chapin Hall

First Guamanian to Attend Williams

Pinsi Lei ’12 recounts the moment she learned she was accepted into Williams.

An orange and pink mountain sunset.

Nostalgia for the Mountains

Adam Grogg ’04 has become “that alum.”

Commencement1973

Early Days for One Woman at Williams, 1970-1973

Thomasin Jean Berry ’73 writes about her experience being among some of the first female students at Williams.

Two male students pose together in their football uniforms.

Great Commonality

1999 teammates Matt Sigrist and John Berry-Candelario discuss how they continue to feel connected to their alma mater since graduating.