Yale University

Class Notes

August 1998

by Dennis Lynch

Reminder: Our 35th class reunion will be held June 3-6, 1999! Both the families of Jonathan Leader and Chuck Mokriski have established scholarships for worthy Yale undergraduates. The Leader fund's recipient was Sarah Kinsley ’98. Sarah is truly a renaissance person. In addition to majoring in music, Sarah managed to “find the time to compete on the varsity track and field and baseball teams.” She plans to enter a graduate field with the intention of pursuing a career in musical therapy. Brian Lizote ’00 was the repeat recipient of the J. Frederick Mokriski scholarship. Brian has taken a wide range of courses including psychology, mathematics, creative writing, and theater. He plans to major in social psychology and complete an MBA in marketing. His goal is to pursue a career in “writing, production, and design for a major advertising company” and in scriptwriting for television and film. These scholarship funds provide Yale with added financial wherewithal to assist worthy students in reaching their full potential. Something to consider!

For those of you who are weighing the heavy matter of whether or not to return for the 35th Reunion (June 3-6, 1999), I thought you would be interested in some of Syd Lea's comments. “Add my name to the list!” he writes. According to Syd, “I don't think of myself as a 'reunionable' guy [given his calling, we will permit him a little poetic license], the only such affair I've ever attended having been my own 25th. But I confess to having had such a fine and reassuring time at that one that I'll be there for number 35.” Maybe you should too! Incidentally, Syd won the 1997 Poet's Prize, an award “juried by 20 of my peers in the genre. I got some considerable moola, along with a shindig in NYC on May 22 at the Nicholas Roerich Museum.” Perhaps we should be soliciting Syd for a major gift!?

Snippets: Ecology continues to dominate Robert Gall's life in Clinton, Tennessee. The photosynthesis of forest tree seedlings during artificial fumigation with sulfur dioxide or other air pollutants is his area of expertise. He loves his specialty, but he feels that “too much time is wasted with computers” in analyzing environmental problems. Across the continent in Porter, Oklahoma, Charles van Tuyl is aspiring to “acquire the world's largest collection of lone-wolf pictures. I am surprised at how much fun my life has become.”

While his real-estate business in Cambridge, Massachusetts continues to prosper, Robert H. Kuehn has resolved to “schedule a week a month away from daily business.” He feels that rescheduling his time will permit him to participate in pro bono activities which will “help shape important public policy issues.”

Paul Balser and his wife Alexandra have moved to 60 Park Avenue, Larchmont, NY 10538. They welcome all classmates. Paul continues to manage Generation Partners, a $165-million, direct, private-equity fund with offices in New York and San Francisco.

Regretfully, I report the death of Alois von Isakovics III, who died of colon cancer on February 10, 1998.

Comment: Yale has often been criticized in the press, particularly the Wall Street Journal, for its bungling of the Lee Bass gift. While much of the criticism can be justified, there are other positive developments which have been taking place at our alma mater. For instance, Yale has recently announced a new initiative to help fund Yale students who come from middle-class families. Yale has decided to exempt up to $150,000 of a family's savings, home equity, and other assets from consideration in determining what parents are expected to contribute toward their child's education. This newer approach to calculating financial needs will help ensure that the Yale undergraduate population will be well represented by middle-class students. A second positive observation is the outstanding investment performance of the Yale endowment. During the past ten years ending June 30, 1997, the endowment earned an annualized 13.5 percent return, net of fees, placing it in the top one percent of large institutions, as measured by the SEI Large Plan Universe. Money given to Yale is well managed.

Apologies to Francis Snyder. In the May Notes, his name was incorrectly spelled Sunder.

Have a wonderful and healthy summer!