Alumni Notes: September / October 2013

Recent articles sent to people on his personal email list by Bill Stott:

— "Alarmist articles about NSA surveillance"
— "The Secret to Finland's Success with Schools, Moms, Kids and Everything"
— "Every Teenager Should Have a Summer of '65."

Bill is one of several classmates who post or publish regularly online, with others we know of including Charlie Mills, Chris Bent, and Gary Richardson. Bill's range is protean; he often provides brief annotations, like this on NSA surveillance: "Both articles below beg the same question: how does the West put limits on its information gathering and yet learn all it needs to know to protect us? I like to think there are answers and don't understand why people don't suggest one or more, instead of fulminating." (If you are a practitioner of this cyber-age activity, tell your CorSecs and we'll put links on www.yale62.org; to request Bill's postings, email him at wstott@utexas.edu.)

Speaking of that new cyber region which some love and others think should be called Cyberia, our magazine-like website, www.yale62.org, published its latest issue on July 3. In the first two weeks we got 764 page views and 416 unique visits, and enticed visitors to make 97 return visits. If you're not skimming it when the email notice of a new edition comes around, are you missing something?

Another Bill, this time Stork, has moved from Hong Kong to Singapore. He'll be writing for a forthcoming website edition about his impressions, including his contacts with the new Yale campus there. The city has proven "a most gentle and acceptable living arena," he says. "It is vibrant with cultural opportunities. I am going to suggest to the local Yale group here that we have monthly docent visits to the huge number of museums. I will not mention the food ... oh, my!"

Asia-minded in a different way, Bob Connery and his wife, Willow, went this spring to Southeast Asia on a tour that included Bangkok, Cambodia (Angkor Wat and Sihanoukville), Saigon, Vietnam (including crawling through Viet Cong tunnels), and Borneo (Sarawak, Kuching, Brunei and Singapore). "Revisiting the Vietnam War," he says, prompted "a sad reflection on what we did there - so clearly wrong even without hindsight." Michael LeVine likewise came back from a tour of Cuba, arranged by Yale Educational travel, finding it "difficult to justify" another US policy, the continuing trade embargo. After all, he says, "after losing more than 50,000 US lives to prevent a Communist takeover in Vietnam we carry on trade with this country," and "the Soviet Union was our deadly enemy for 40 years, but we trade with Russia today. For our own good we have to stop trying to destroy Cuba with our embargo." (We will have photos and comments from both on the website.)

Jonathan Ater received the "Judge Learned Hand" award for 2013 from the Oregon Area Jewish Committee. His introducer cited his career as showing that "even at a for-profit private firm, one could, at the same time, be an excellent advisor to his or her clients; maintain an intellectual interest in the law as a calling, with all its promises and all its failures; and live as an active and engaged member of the community, trying to help make our governmental institutions work trying to improve the lot of (as Bob Dylan says) the luckless, the abandoned and forsaked." Jonathan nicely comments: "It is, of course, an honor to be honored, although I often wonder how committees actually get to a name, and I looked out on a room with many others equally deserving."

Charlie Eisendrath, who for years has run the Knight-Wallace program of mid-career fellowships for journalists at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, announced the program's 40th class of fellows, and the projects they are pursuing during the 2013-14 academic year provide a forecast of likely hot topics in the news ahead. They include the "institutionalization of the War on Terror," family newspaper dynasties, sports and gambling, the use of Syrian citizen journalists by international media outlets, whether technological education can stop displacing middle class jobs, the connection of poverty and mental illness, women's leadership in Korean and international politics, and genetically modified foods.

David Finkle has published two Kindle eBooks that are available on Amazon.com, "How I confronted my Abandonment Issues" and "All Those Boys." Jack and Yvonne McCredie and Ed and Lorna Goodman are celebrating their 50th anniversaries. Any others who'd like the recognition of classmates should let us know. Many of these spouses have become real friends of the class.

For you rabid bulldogs, if you haven't noticed, the alumni magazine's website, www.yalealumnimagazine.com, has a new look and many new features. The editors recently announced that the site is updated daily (often more than once, as news breaks), and now also notes Yale-related events around the world and recent obituaries of Yale alumni and faculty members (where you can leave remembrances).The class notes are not online yet (but past '62 notes can be found on our website).

Necrology: Boyd P. Brown died in June. An obituary will be posted on the website. Several others are in the works.