Saturday, October 24, 2009

A note from Edward Schwartz

I received the following notes from Edward Schwartz:

I haven't sent in an update in quite a while, so I figured I should hit you up with something.

I still live in Lexington, MA, with my wife, Alyssa Goodman, an Astronomy professor at Harvard, and our daughter, Abby, who just started Middle School (Yikes!). I run my own trial consulting business ( and publish a blog, The Jury Box, about jury trials, jury behavior research and jury reform ( I am very active in the Pro Bono Initiative of the American Society of Trial Consultants ( So, if you are a provider of legal services to clients of limited means, and you think you could use help with jury selection, case strategy, exhibit production or court technology, give me a holler. I am sure I can find someone to help you out. I am a heavy LinkedIn user (but I can stop anytime I want to, man) and I invite any Yalies to connect with me there. I am even more of a golf nut than I was in college and I am always up for a game (I still suck, but I play fast). I'd be up for a regular Boston Yale '87 lunch if someone wants to organize one... hint, hint. I look forward to hearing from old friends.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Coming of age

In the last month or so, I have had the privilege of joining two of our classmates -- Nurit Sonnenschein and Paul Sarkozi -- when they had a child celebrate a bar/bat mitzvah. Both of coming of age ceremonies were incredibly moving, personal celebrations. Nurit comes from a gifted musical family, and her family celebrated Nurit's son's bar mitzvah with soulful prayers set to music written by Nurit's father and performed by Nurit and her siblings and children. Paul's family marked their daughter's bat mitzvah with heartfelt and deeply spiritual prayers written by Paul and his wife. I couldn't help come away from these ceremonies without a few thoughts.

First, I was struck by the fact that the children we were celebration are not much younger than we were when we all first met. Many of our children are nearly old enough to go to college (and some of us already have college aged kids). It can't be that we are that old.

Second, and more seriously, I was struck by the maturity, poise and insightfulness of the children of our classmates. Although I spent some time in college worrying about how not to become a parent, I did not give a lot of thought back then to the sort of parent I (or my classmates) might be. Having been a parent for some time, now, I must say that I have been impressed by our classmates' parenting ability of late.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

New York Party for the Yale College Classes of the 80s and 90s

Classes of the 80s and 90s Party

The Yale College Class of the 80s and 90s are getting together for a party. Hope you can make it!

When: November 10, 2009 6:30pm-9:30pm
Where: Retreat Lounge37 W 17th St(btn 5/6 Ave)New York, NY 10011

Your co-hosts,Audrey Leibovich, '97, My Luu, '96, Pamela Weinstock, '89, Tim Harkness '87 and many others! The host committee is in formation. If you're interesting in being a co-host for this event -- mainly to help spread the word among your classmates -- please contact Audrey at

Monday, October 12, 2009

A note from Cynthia Tignor Borgani

Dear Classmates

I have some news that I thought might of interest. I've been living in Sao Paulo since 1993 singing jazz professionally and teaching voice and improvisation at the college level here. Now things in Brazil have always had a funny way of working themselves out nicely under the table... especially in the popular music field. The Minestry of Education here is working to put a stop to that, though. Their requirements are that I validate my college and graduate school (Stanford,... sorry) diplomas. Validating them here means getting the Brazilian government to agree that they are 'equivalent' in merit to those which would be offered here in Brazil. Even though I was a resonably decent student at Yale and at Stanford, Brazil will not give me the needed stamp saying that my diplomas are equivalent since I graduated in Latin American Studies and the same department does not exist in this country!!

Since Brazil will not recognize my Yale and Stanford degress, the long and the short of it is that I find myself at this ripe old age needing to START OVER AGAIN!!! Since I am the professor at one of the top schools here, that seems to entail admitting myself and giving myself passing grades, so perhaps all is not lost... After having three kids I do find that some of my neurons have hidden themselves from sight, but since I'm such a nice professor, perhaps I could overlook my own missing brain cells and give myself passing grades so that I could have a diploma of "equal!!?" value to Yale's in Brazil's eyes... (I'm joking a bit here, but the predicament is fantastically and sadly real!)

I accept any and all advice on how to resolve my predicament!!

Cynthia Tignor Borgani
(Saybrook 87)

More notes from Classmates

Lynne Brooks wrote in: "Liz Swisher came out in late September to visit me in Philadelphia. We got to spend a day together on the links. Great to catch up with her. She has two girls, lives in Seattle and is a doc. She was out ehre for a cancer research conference."

Hanna Weg wrote in with the following: "Tim! Still living in Los Angeles, where tonight I will attend the premiere of The Film Department's (my husband's company) first movie -- LAW ABIDING CITIZEN. It will be released across the country on October 16th! I am still writing, and last week just attached a fantastic director -- Heitor Dalhia -- to a script of mine being produced at Lakeshore Entertainment. So all is well!"

Stephen Epstein had this update: "In Boston, still working at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in the ED (emergency department). Our major emergency medicine national conference is coming to Boston starting Monday ... listened to a great sermon about the shame of hunger on Yom Kippur ... kids are growing, and my son is discovering that 3rd grade is much more challenging than 2nd."

A note from Chris Liebig

Here is a note I received from Chris Liebig:

Hi, Tim -- this is my first time writing in to the class notes. I'm raising three daughters in Iowa City (where Sam Chang is a local celebrity) and teaching legal writing at the University of Iowa College of Law (where Peggie Smith is a professor). Watching what goes on in my kids' elementary school in the name of education -- and partly provoked by a recent article by E.D. Hirsch, Jr. in the Yale Alumni Magazine -- I have started a blog to talk about how high-stakes testing is not only hurting our kids but is causing the schools to indoctrinate them into authoritarian values. Thought I would pass the link ( along in case anyone's interested.

Governor Dudley?

The press is talking about classmate Chris Dudley as a possible gubernatorial candidate in Oregon. For more info, click here: Run, Chris, Run!