No. 48
Spring, 2011 - Summer, 2013

This is a compilation of Class of 1963 Classnotes for the last two years.

Latest News from the Class of 63

June 2013 Issue

You should be reading this soon after our terrific 50th Reunion. I am writing it months before, but I know it will be terrific because I am already hearing from so many of you who will be there. In the fall issue of CCT we will have a full report on the reunion. If you attended, please send me your notes now, and I will include them.

I’m also hearing from some of you who can’t attend, but send greetings to their classmates.

Roland Droitsch he writes, “Alas I am one of those who will not be able to come to the reunion. So here is a little piece for the class notes. Even though I am getting older and older, I clearly remember those wonderful days at Columbia. I do not even know where to start, but I will let you know how I came to that wonderful college. I lived way up on the Hudson River and a great friend of the family was Professor F.W. Dupee, who had a wonderful house up there on the river were there was a slight bend in it. From his porch you could see miles and miles down the Hudson. Well, as many of you probably know, Dupee was the Chairman of the English Department and a renowned expert on Henry James. It was Professor Dupee who introduced me to going to Columbia. While there I met and had so many wonderful professors. There was Andrew Chiappe who taught Shakespeare in a way I still remember. Professor Rothschild taught me about East Central Europe. Professor James Zito who taught an English class in which every book we read was ‘the best book ever written.’ And who can ever forget Professor Dwight Miner, who when teaching Contemporary Civilization had us all memorized.”

Mel Gurtov writes, “50th reunion? Impossible. Warm greetings to classmates from my farm in Deadwood, Oregon, and best wishes for a wonderful time together. Duty calls in our apple orchard; so sorry I can't be with you.”

Barry Austern writes, “I won’t be able to make it, but I do want to say hi to everyone. I guess the only exciting news for me was that in November I took a ‘MacMania’ cruise that was 2 weeks of instruction on Macintosh computers. It left from Sydney, Australia, up the coast of Queensland, then three ports in New Caledonia. In between we woke up bright and early to see the total eclipse of the sun.”

Charles Bremmer wrote that he would not attend our reunion as he had matriculated in 1957 and therefore consider himself a member of the class of 1961. “All my college friends were members of '61. However, between my junior and senior years, I took a one-year sabbatical and worked at the largest mental hospital in NJ (my major was abnormal psychology). After the year was up, I enrolled in the fall semester, but two weeks before classes began I contracted whooping cough. Contracting whooping cough at age 21 ain't no walk in the park. I would rather have had root canal. So I enrolled in the spring semester and thought ‘What the hell. I'll enroll for three semesters and take some graduate school courses so I can graduate in May.’” After retiring as Vice-President, International Trade from a national association in Washington, DC, he now resides in Secaucus, NJ. “I received an outstanding education at Columbia. I was a poor student, a goof-off, but I had the privilege of studying under Fred Keller, the great Sidney Morgenbesser and Douglas Moore.”

Philip Sandler writes, “Four years at Columbia were a wonderful experience. Went on to practice psychiatry in central Massachusetts, helping to close a state hospital, start an inpatient psychiatry unit in our local hospital, work in every aspect of community psychiatry, and run a private practice of marital and family therapy. Twenty-one years ago moved to Brookline in suburban Boston, worked for a large HMO and then in the student health service of Boston University. After retiring two years ago, I became more active in Rotary International, a world-wide humanitarian organization. I am also a professional zaydeh, (Yiddish for grandfather,) looking after grandchildren while their parents work.”

Philip is disappointed that he will not be able to celebrate the reunion with the class. “As the president-elect of the Rotary Club of Brookline, MA, I will be hosting a team from Brazil. Our club is sponsoring a clean water project in a village in the Recife area. I expect to attend its inauguration there in two years. In November, 2011 I was privileged to join a team of Rotarians who traveled to Mali, West Africa, to immunize children against polio. I was surprised that I could still speak French well enough after fifty years to give a speech to Rotary clubs in Bamako about our campaign to eradicate polio.

My greatest accomplishment and joy is my marriage of 44 years to the amazing Dr. Lucy Winters Sandler, and our two sons and four grandchildren. I am also lucky to have two healthy parents. Ten of our family are leaving on a Caribbean cruise tomorrow to celebrate their 72nd anniversary and Dad's upcoming 100th birthday. In its wisdom, the state of Florida renewed his driver's license by mail last year for another six years.”

Carey Winfrey writes, “In the summer of 2011, I turned 70 and completed 10 years as editor of SMITHSONIAN magazine, within about two weeks. That struck me as a telling moment to hang up my typewriter, so within a few hours of my retirement party in Washington, DC, where my wife Jane and I had lived for a decade, we cashed in our frequent flyer miles and boarded a plane for New Delhi and five weeks in India. It was a wonderful trip, and I didn't have a second for second thoughts about leaving a job I loved. You can see some photographs from that trip, as well as from the month we just spent in Southeast Asia (more frequent flyer miles) at When we got back from India, we moved into what had been our weekend house the thirty-some years we lived and worked in Manhattan. As it had been rented out for a decade, there was plenty of deferred maintenance to address, plus the upgrading of a weekend house to one in which we would live for half the year. The other half, and you can probably guess which one, we repair to Key West, Florida, where Jane and I immediately began working on a self-financed documentary about the town's many writers, starting with John Dos Passos and Ernest Hemingway, moving forward through Robert Frost, Wallace Stevens, Tennessee Williams, James Merrill, John Hersey, John Malcolm Brinnen, Truman Capote, Hunter Thompson and Richard Wilbur to such present day literary luminaries as Alison Lurie, Robert Stone, Judy Blume, Michael Mewshaw, Ann Beatty, Harry Mathews and the list goes on and on. It's a fascinating project that has given us access to some of the more interesting people in Key West. At the end of each of the more than 30 interviews we've done so far (with another dozen or so to come), I asked each of our subjects about his/her position on the city's rampant feral chicken population. Putting together their answers produced a nine-minute film called ‘Writers on Chickens,’ which was shown at the 2012 Key West Literary Seminar, the theme of which was ‘Writers on Writers. (‘Chickens,’ which can be seen at (password: kwchickens), has almost nothing to do with the more ambitious film about Key West's writers, the working title of which is ‘Republic of Letters: the Writers of Key West.’) In other news, our twin sons turned 30 on March 22, 2013 and Graham, the older one by 10 minutes (though it didn't seem that long), is marrying the wonderful Meredith Bichsel on June 15, 2013 at a church near our house in Amenia, New York in Dutchess County. As for the big five-oh reunion, I am indeed planning to attend, if only for a day or two. To any classmate still fearful of taking the plunge into retirement, as I must confess I was, I would say there's nothing to fear but boredom and, I'm extremely happy to report, I haven't been bored for a minute. And now to tennis...”

Rich Eisenberg writes, “It seems both way too long and just yesterday that we were at Columbia and taking regular trips up to the boathouse. I have read class notes but have not really contributed. However, in light of the upcoming reunion and life's transitions, I thought I would add a few comments. Simply put, life has been a great ride. I am now Tracy Harris Professor Emeritus of Chemistry at the University of Rochester where I have been for nearly 40 years. While I stopped formal teaching two years ago, I still have an active research group in chemistry on solar energy conversion and making hydrogen as part of artificial photosynthesis. My work is being honored by the New York Section of the American Chemical Society with the Nichols Medal ( I was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2010 and received a Lifetime Achievement Award in Graduate Education from Rochester the same year. Marcia and I will celebrate 47 years of marriage this summer, with two sons and their families including two delightful grand-daughters. With no teaching obligations, Marcia and I have been snowbirding in Sarasota the past few years - sun, beach, golf, it really beats the Rochester (and NYC) winters.”

Manny Rabinowitz writes that he is “married to Judith Bilenker, ’65 Barnard, since the world began.” He has two sons, Ted (Columbia ‘87), and Alan (Princeton), and two grandsons. “I practiced law in NYC until 1989 when we moved to Florida, where I was vice-chair of American Media, Inc., a NYSE company that published the National Enquirer, Star magazine, Soap Opera magazine, Country Music, and Weekly World News. The company was sold in 1999-2000 and I retired. Since then, I have been able to indulge an old passion for photography. Judy and I have been fortunate to be able to travel to many parts of Asia, Africa, Antarctica and South America, and look forward to more of the same.”

We have lost two more of our classmates. Henry A. Sellner died in Danbury, Conn., on January 25, 2013. After getting a Phi Beta Kappa at the College, he went on to graduate from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He practiced obstetrics and gynecology for 35 years in Danbury, CT, where he created Womancare, PC. Later in life, he traveled to Central America to bring his expertise to rural clinics.

Robert E. Dyson died in Sarasota, Florida on July 30, 2011. They are two more of our classmates who I wish we’d been able to say hello to again at the reunion. Requiescat in pace.

I certainly hope that our 50th Reunion Class Gift will break all sorts of records. If you want to make sure that it does, please make your donation now. You have until the end of June, the end of our reunion (and Columbia’s fiscal) year. The one record I’d personally like to see the class break is the one for percentage participation. If you have never given a dime in 50 years, now is the time to make amends. How about $10 for each year? Or, better yet, $100. If you have already made your donation, thank you for supporting the continued excellence of Columbia.

Remember our regular class lunches at the Columbia Club are always a great place to reconnect. If you’re back in NYC, try to make one of the next Class of `63 lunches, scheduled for June 13, July 11, and then again in the fall on September 12 – it’s always the second Thursday. Check our Web site at for details.

In the meantime, let us know what you are up to, how you’re doing, and what’s next.


March 2013 Issue

By now you should have received enough material from Columbia about our 50th Reunion to prove that it is an unavoidable fact. We graduated 50 years ago—an unbelievable landmark in life, and one that deserves to be celebrated. Our Reunion committee has been planning an event that we hope will give you a chance to reconnect with Columbia and, more importantly, your classmates. The dates are Wednesday May 29 to Sunday, June 2. Plans include a reception at Phil and Donna Satow’s loft on Wednesday evening, a reception at the President’s house on Thursday, and a boat cruise luncheon touring New York Harbor. There will be panel discussions, tours of the campus, affinity group meetings, and ample time for our classmates to discuss what they have been doing for the last 50 years. On Saturday, we will enjoy two of Columbia’s great rooms with our lunch in Casa Italiana, and our Class Banquet in Low Library Rotunda. Since our last column I have been contacted by many of you including Rich Juro, Andy Lewin, Bob Bilenker, Alan Jacobs, Bob Morantz, Harvey Schneier, David Saxe, Steve Clineburg, Michael DiLorenzo, David Orme-Johnson, and Michael Nolan. If my email is any indication, everyone is looking forward to coming back to Morningside and we will have a record turnout. You can register now online at Join us!

My wife Ruth and I enjoyed seeing many of you at Homecoming again this year. Among those attending were Bob Kraft, Ed Coller (back for the Marching Band reunion), Richard and Alice Gochman, Don Margolis, Phil Satow, Jerry and Jane Dwyer and grandchildren, Doron Gopstein, and Larry Neuman (all assure me that they will attend our 50th Reunion). It was a perfect day except for our loss to Dartmouth. (Several weeks later, I sat with Henry Black and Bruce Kaplan to witness the team’s great performance in a blowout of Cornell, a much more pleasing result.)

Jerry Glickson was awarded the Gold Medal from the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine for introduction of NMR spectroscopy to the study and management of cancer. The award was made in Montreal, Canada on May 9, 2011 and was shared with John R. Griffiths, M.D., of Cambridge University. Jerry is Professor of Radiology and the Director of Molecular Imaging at University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Congratulations to Bob Kraft, who was inducted into the Columbia University Athletics Hall of Fame Banquet in October.

Mike Hassan writes, “All is well here in sunny Cabo San Lucas, Mexico where I am semi-retired. I say semi since I have just completed building a beach home on speculation and I have attached a photo or two [on our website] just in case someone wants to live in a magical place with unobstructed ocean and mountain views, 100 yards from a pristine beach, etc. There, you have my marketing campaign.

On a more personal note I have gotten cyber engaged after 40 years of single life with the last ten roaming the globe. (The relationship is real, just the engagement was done cybernetically.)”

Marc Galanter writes, “I am married to Elizabeth Hill, M.D. (also a psychiatrist). On top of that, my daughter Cathryn is a psychiatrist, and daughter Margit is a Feldenkreis practitioner. I am a Professor of Psychiatry at NYU and direct its Division of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. In addition to teaching, I'm doing research on Alcoholics Anonymous.”

Bob Morantz is a retired neurosurgeon living in Florida, who was honored by the Education Foundation of Collier County as one of the 2012 Men of Distinction. This was based on his service to the not-for-profit sector of Naples, Florida, where he is serving on the Board of Directors of four philanthropic organizations.

Larry Apple's one act play, “Feldman & Sons” was presented in February as part of the Midwinter Madness festival at the Roy Arias Studios on West 42nd Street.  Larry has also completed a film on Alzheimer's and a full length play, MOM that had a staged reading at the New York Dramatists' Guild Friday Night Footlights program. He continues to work in the senior housing and real estate business.

Zev bar-Lev (né Rob Lefkowitz) writes, “We're looking forward to seeing you all at the 50th reunion, glad to be thriving in our almost 50th year of blurry mist... I mean, married bliss...with Shoshana nėe Jane Wirth, Barnard ‘63, after getting all too friendly with the Angel of Death, and pleased not to have seen his ugly face for over a year. I marked my very final final last week at San Diego State U., after 33 years and 60+ publications in linguistics, covering Hebrew, Arabic, and a bunch of other languages, teaching cognitive linguistics, psycholinguistics, language & politics, and Hebrew. I have settled into my new projects, with new frontiers (redundant) in my research, exploring common origins of English and Hebrew that have been hiding in plain view for centuries. Not the Tower of Babel, but surprising new turns in language structure and history, expanding the system I developed for analyzing and teaching Hebrew for 30 years to suddenly include English, Latin, etc. Our 5 grandchildren are on their way to being bilingual in large or small measure. I will share my 70th with Shoshana and Jaxon aka ‘Kobi Dan’ (our third grandkid, I think, age 6, and I'm planning to chant the Divine Mooning (Exodus 33, my favorite Torah selection for some 47 years) for the occasion. just a year after the doctor at the rehab hospital told me, after my 5-month coma, which my sister and brother Sandy and Larry Lefkowitz ‘60 helped Shoshana pull me out of, that I shouldn't hope to read Torah ever again. (In my spare time, I'm formulating the TUOT (theory of the universe and other things, pronounced "toot") and exploring the fifth dimension with Shoshana. )

Ralph Schmeltz writes, “I am planning to be at Columbia, to celebrate not only my 50th, but my son’s 20th. Will be great to see whomever shows up….50 year grads are ‘old guys’ but my mind still seems 18, until it asks my bod to do something.”

David Pittinsky and his wife Alecia sent me detailed notes on their annual pilgrimage to Saint Tropez, where they stayed for the tenth year at Résidence de la Pinède. Here they celebrated David’s 70th with family and friends. The detailed list of favorite restaurants and the descriptions of the feasts enjoyed will be found on our web site at Mouthwatering…

Robert Smith writes, “I’m still active in psychiatry research and clinical work as Research Professor of Psychiatry at NYU and Research psychiatrist at Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research (NKI), where I lead a biological psychiatry research group. Much of this professional life is involved in research projects, grants and papers. I also continue to have a small outpatient private practice. I give medical student lectures at St. John's hospital. My mentor and supervisor at NKI is still leading his research department after his 90th birthday and just recently retired as editor of the Journal of Neurochemistry, and I take him as a model to emulate. My wonderful wife Sultana is also still teaching two courses in French at Hofstra University, and one of her colleagues taught there part time into his 90’s. I retired from one clinical job about 18 months ago, so now I have two jobs instead of three, and can organize my work life and free time with greater personal freedom and control. It's sometimes stressful but very interesting and enjoyable. You have to have the right type of creative craziness. I'm not certain I'll be at the 50thy anniversary celebration. I'd like to but the NCDEU meeting on clinical psychopharmacology in psychiatry may be occurring at the same time, and I often attend and present at this meeting.” Robert, I hope you can make Reunion. Our 50th only comes once!

I often receive email and Facebook links from Michael Nolan who, among many other activities, offers assistance with ancestry searches. I enjoy the tales of his own Irish Catholic/Jewish roots. If you need some assistance in researching your own family history, contact Mike at

Michael Klare was honored to appear on a panel on resource scarcity at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit Sept. 7-8 in Vladivostok, Russia, where featured speakers included Presidents Vladimir Putin of Russia and Hu Jintao of China and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.  He also spoke at the "Energetika XXI" conference on energy geopolitics at the Saint Petersburg (Russia) State University of Economics and Finance in October. Klare is on sabbatical from his position as a Five College Professor (at Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, and Smith Colleges and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst) this fall and using the time to promote his latest book, 'The Race for What's Left: The Global Scramble for the World's Last Resources.'

A new CD by Hank Davis has just been issued by Bear Family Records in Germany (available on Amazon). It contains excerpts from Hank’s 50 year recording career without a hit record. A 50 page illustrated booklet includes Hank’s time at Columbia and a song recorded with fellow alum Art Garfunkel ‘65.

Walter Stein is recovering from the amputation of his right foot. He bravely attended our recent reunion planning meeting, where he sat next to me in the gimp section – I am recovering from a surgically repaired, ruptured left Achilles tendon. We both promise to be ready to dance at the Reunion.

Remember our regular class lunches at the Columbia Club are a great place to reconnect. If you’re back in NYC, try to make one of the next Class of `63 lunches, scheduled for March 14, April 11, and May 9 – it’s always the second Thursday. Check our Web site at for details.

In the meantime, if you haven’t already, make sure you register and attend our 50th reunion! And, as always, let us know what you are up to, how you’re doing, and what’s next.


December 2012 Issue

You are probably reading this on a cold December evening, but don’t despair, the warmth, and our 50th Reunion are just around the corner on May 30 to June 2, 2013. If you haven’t been inundated with the details from Columbia, contact me right away, and I will make sure you are in the loop. This is the reunion that we believed, and hoped would never come, but here it is, and it actually promises to be a wonderful time. I asked our classmates to let me know if they were coming and who they would like to see. Here are the early results.

Bob Morantz and his wife Marsha are planning to attend the 50th reunion celebration. He would like to see Harvey Cantor there. Mark Ramee writes that he and his wife, Diane will be there. As do Ken Master, Ira Malter, and Charles Miller.

Gary Rachelefsky writes, “Gail and I will be attending and are looking forward to seeing classmates and spouses, including Bob Heller, Phil Satow, Gary Toback, Sy Moskowitz, Conrad Levenson, Joel Felner, and Peter Broido, among others. Gail and I are healthy and happy entering our 47 year of marriage. We have 7 grandchildren ranging in age from 2 to 15. I am still working full time at Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Cannot wait to catch up with all my ‘old’ classmates”

Ira Epstein writes, “After graduating from Columbia College, I received my Master's Degree in Labor and Industrial Relations from the University of Illinois. I then attended the University of Wisconsin Law School and received a Juris Doctorate Degree. I am married to Gerri Epstein, a retired high school English teacher. This December, we will be celebrating our 43rd wedding anniversary. We have three children: Beth, Aaron, and Jan. We also have four grandchildren. I recently retired as a Federal Administrative Law Judge and have presently resumed my Labor, Arbitration, and Mediation practice.

I plan to attend the 50th reunion and look forward to seeing the following people: John Ake, Thomas Bailey, Jay Bulmash, Dave Carlin, Gerry Dwyer, Richard Dubusc, Steve Drogin, Roger Fine, Joe Fisher, Eric Foner, Lothar Genge, George Glaubiger, Walter Guarino, Peter Highberg, Tim Krupa, Zev Bar-Lev, Ken Kuhn, Jerry Levy, Jerry McIntyre, Bob Peters, Bob Pollet, Ken Robbins, Martin Iszkowitz, Ken O'Hare, Jonah Raskin, Chris Rieger, Rollie Trenouth, Joe Wells, Carey Winfrey, and Nick Zill.

Marc Galanter writes, “I am married to Elizabeth Hill, M.D. (also a psychiatrist). On top of that, my daughter Cathryn is a psychiatrist, and daughter Margit is a Feldenkreis practitioner. I am a Professor of Psychiatry at NYU and direct its Division of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. In addition to teaching, I'm doing research on Alcoholics Anonymous.”

Paul Kimmel has retired after 42 years of teaching chemistry at East Brunswick High School. “I went out on a high note with one of my students being selected for the National Olympiad Study Camp, one of only 20 in the country. I'm still teaching College Board AP Chemistry workshops in the summer, and I'm still teaching at Rutgers. I've been doing the evening General Chemistry lectures there for 25 years. Now, with my EBHS retirement, I'm getting more stuff to do at Rutgers. They gave me the job of administering the General Chem course, which is a lot of work since there are about 1700 students in the course. Setting up the website, answering student questions and complaints, getting exams ready, assigning proctors for the exams, grading… Sounds like fun, right? I'm still doing the evening lectures, and now a few recitations.

I'm still actively playing the piano and doing tandem bike riding with my wife. We did 3000 miles in 2011, and we're on target for about the same in 2012. We did a 500 mile group ride across New York State in July – from Niagara Falls to Saratoga Springs.”

David Orme-Johnson writes, “Yes, I definitely want to attend our 50th. This year we went to my wife Rhoda’s 50th at Vassar and it was so much fun to be in that atmosphere of concentrated creative intelligence, not only reconnecting with her old roommates but also meeting a lot of great people that she had not connected with during her college years. One thing they had which Columbia will probably also do or should do is have a display of works of classmates, including books, art, movies, etc. They also had great lectures by faculty to choose from. The young 5th year reunion alums really cheered us old codgers as we marched in, like we were some great war heroes of life.

I would particularly like to reconnect with Nick Zill, John Cornillon, Michael Schechtman, Dick Ostrovsky, and Bob Margolin.

I am continuing to pursue my life-long interest in meditation. We spent this summer in Fairfield Iowa at the university we helped to found in 1972 (now called Maharishi University of Management), meditating with a group of 2,000 people with the intention of creating coherence in US national consciousness. Lord knows we need it. I know it sounds nutty, but there are 50 studies showing it works, on several of which I am a co-author. I have a review of NIH supported randomized control trials on the effects of the Transcendental Meditation technique on coronary heart disease coming out any day now in Current Hypertension Reviews, I have a meta-analysis in review of the effects of TM on perceptual motor behavior under pressure (e.g., rapid fire pistol shooting, top speed driving), and I am currently doing a meta-analysis on the effects of TM and other meditation techniques on trait anxiety and objective stress indicators, such as blood pressure, school behavior, and functional ability in heart patients.

This fall we are going to France for a month to visit one of Rhoda’s former roommates in her chateau in the Dordogne, where the cave paintings are (I can’t wait), and to tour Provence, land of Van Gogh, Cezanne, Renoir, Picasso, Matisse and other greats. I will be taking my water colors and pursuing my other passion, painting.

Henry Black writes, “Benita and I had a very stimulating and interesting summer. We went to Kenya and Tanzania on a two week Road Scholar safari. The wildlife was as memorable as you might expect (lions, zebras, baboons, elephants, a crocodile, a leopard, a rhino, hippos, wildebeests, ostriches, eagles, banded mongooses, hyraxes, flamingoes, giraffes, hyenas, egrets and more). The vistas were truly awesome (sorry, but here the word is appropriate). We visited Olduvai Gorge, where the Leakeys began and did much of their work. Then we spent two weeks at our summer retreat at the Chautauqua Institution, where the theme of the second week we were there was US Presidents. On a professional note, in November I was the Harold Solomon Visiting Professor in Hypertension at the Beth Israel-Deaconess Hospital of Harvard Medical School. I spent 10 days lecturing on hypertension in India and another 10 days doing the same in Turkey. In May, I gave the James V. Warren Memorial Lecture at the Ohio State University Medical Center. In August, the 2nd edition of Hypertension: A Companion to Braunwald’s Heart Disease edited by HR Black and WJ Elliott, was published by Saunders Elsevier. If you have a spare 4-6 minutes each week, tune in to “Black on Cardiology” on Medscape Cardiology, for discussions of issues in cardiovascular disease. And I think I am semi-retired. I hope to see everyone at our 50th.”

Farhad Idjadi writes, “I have the reunion dates on my calender and looking forward to join you all on that occasion.

As a transfer students and having spent two years only at Columbia, I unfortunately did not get a chance to get acquainted with many of my classmates. The new curriculum certainly kept me very busy. I did however contribute in a small way by submitting photographs to our year book, many of which were used. I spent my junior and senior years at Columbia. It turned out the most challenging and the best educational experiences of my life. After receiving my medical degree from NYU and completing residency there, at which time I got married, we spent two years in the USAF in North Dakota, where we had our two children. Over the next 32 years, I was in the private practice of surgery in New Jersey and subsequently spent time traveling for 4 years, performing locum tenens surgery throughout the US, which we found very fulfilling and enjoyable. I retired in 2011. Our older son received his PhD in Marine Ecology and is a professor in CT, living with his wife and one year old son. Our younger son practices Orthopedics Sports Medicine in Seattle. I am now fully enjoying my passion for photography which started at age 13, music and reading. We travel often, and enjoy the time we spent with our sons, family, and most importantly our grandson."

Bob Morantz, is a retired neurosurgeon living in Florida, who was honored by the Education Foundation of Collier County as one of the 2012 Men of Distinction. This was based on his service to the not-for-profit sector of Naples, Florida, where he is serving on the Board of Directors of four philanthropic organizations.

Alexis Levitin will be in Europe and will not be able to attend the Reunion. He writes, “What a bummer!”

“This fall semester I am touring the country with prize-winning Brazilian poet Salgado Maranhao. We will be giving bilingual readings from his book Blood of the Sun (Milkweed editions) at over fifty institutions, including in the East Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, Middlebury, The New School, The New York State Writers Institute, Ithaca College, SUNY-Plattsburgh, SUNY-Geneseo, Univ. of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Greensboro and Charlotte, Drexel, Chatham, and the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation Poetry Festival in Newark, New Jersey. It should be fun.”

Sy Moskowitz is Professor of Law at Valparaiso (Indiana) Law School where he teaches Constitutional Law and other subjects. He has taught in numerous places, and is currently teaching law in Chile. His 4 kids have produced five Grandchildren, So far Sy is active in numerous national organizations and he remains an avid outdoorsperson, having climbed in the Himalayas, Mt Kilimanjaro, and other places.

Mike Hassan writes, All is well here in sunny Cabo San Lucas, Mexico where I am semi-retired. I say semi since I have just completed building a beach home on speculation and I have attached a photo or two [on our website] just in case someone wants to live in a magical place with unobstructed ocean and mountain views, 100 yards from a pristine beach, etc. There, you have my marketing campaign.

On a more personal note I have gotten cyber engaged after 40 years of single life with the last ten roaming the globe. (The relationship is real, just the engagement was done cybernetically.)

Philosophically, the toothpaste tube keeps getting emptied somehow, my eye glasses do eventually show up, night follows day with uninterrupted continuity while the space between repetitive tasks seems to shrink and life is defined by the fine line of settling, accepting but not capitulating. Can you feel me? Hahaha!”

Jerry Glickson was awarded the Gold Medal from the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine for introduction of NMR spectroscopy to the study and management of cancer. The award was made in Montreal, Canada on May 9, 2011 and was shared with John R. Griffiths, M.D., of Cambridge University. Jerry is Professor of Radiology and the Director of Molecular Imaging at University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Bob Shlaer writes, “I am just now reading the latest CCT class of '63 notes, and with delight discovered that we have a full-blown (pun intended) piper, Bill Burley. I just started on the pipes last October, and if I ever reach a moderate level of competence we will then have two too many pipers in our class. (Are there any others?) The used pipes I recently bought just happen to be in Columbia colors--(blue bag cover with white fringes, and a blue and white drone cord. Tomorrow I am off to the Jim Thompson School of Piping in Flagstaff, AZ, for a week of intensive study.” I have posted a short but essay that Bob wrote for his friends about his piping epiphany to our web site,

Chekwa (OJ) Jemie writes, “We last saw back in 2008 when my older daughter Ijeoma graduated and we held the banner together at Commencement. If you've forgotten, look at the photos! I've usually had nothing "note-worthy"--but now I do have something I hope can be used for our 50th anniversary. It's a newspaper article from back in 1989.” OJ, thank you, I have posted this to our web site to share with our classmates.

This June Jerry Kessler and his wife, Joyce, visited Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Bornholm Island, Helskinki, St. Petersburg, Talinn (Estonia), and Stockholm. He writes, “Fascinating places! This month, my book, Daddy, Tell Me a Story (This Is My Story and I'm Sticking to It) has been released through It's a memoir, laced with stories about famous and/or fascinating people in the arts and sciences whose paths have crossed mine.”

Charles R. Cantor writes, I have noted the date, but, since I’m not really in control of my calendar, I have no idea if I will actually be able to attend the Reunion. I remain the Chief Scientific Officer of Sequenom in San Diego. After a decade of development we have finally launched non-invasive prenatal diagnostic testing for Down Syndrome and the other common human aneuploidies. I am happy to report that we are already sparing tens of thousands of pregnant women each year from having to undergo invasive tests.

Alan Wilensky writes, I plan to be at our 50th reunion.  I retired at 70 and now only work 40% time as a Professor Emeritus at the University of Washington Epilepsy Center. This gives me more time to spend with my grandchildren, especially my newest of 5, Norah, daughter of Ann Wilensky C'92.

Nicholas Zill reports, “I produced and co-wrote a musical comedy political satire called, How Obama Got His Groove Back, that is currently playing at the Fremont Centre Theatre in South Pasadena, California, through Sunday October 7th. We have gotten more than a dozen reviews, mostly favorable, and audiences are laughing and loving it.

Mark Koppel writes, “I had knee replacement surgery in May to deal with 1971 accident damage.  It went well and I recommend it to anyone who needs it.”

Michael Bumagin writes, “I plan to attend as, I believe, do Arnie Barkman and Bruce Miller. I've been trying to convince Harry Lesch to travel in from Eureka, CA, but he's a single parent with two rambunctious boys (both teenagers) and he's not sure he can leave them with anyone -- if you have suggestions, get in touch with him. Maybe encouragement from another rower will carry more weight than a former roommate!” Harry, Michael’s right! Let’s get together all us old ’63 oarsmen.

Conrad Levinson writes, “I apologize for not sending you anything for years. I always mean to and then the business of life overwhelms everything else. Making up for lost time I will give you more than you want or can use at one time.

On the personal side, I will be celebrating my 70th birthday this coming January. Old friend and classmate Gary Rachelefsky and I plan to have a joint celebration meeting in the middle of the country, Chicago, sometime in 2013. Gary and I remain close and have regular contact and irregular visits. I have four children all disgusting overachievers. They range in age from 20 to 40. The youngest is studying film at the Tisch School at NYU. The next oldest is at the Wagner School of Public Policy at NYU getting a Master’s degree in Urban Planning. The oldest is a specialist in not for profit entrepreneurism, writer and teacher. The next to the oldest is a lawyer working for Citicorp trying to keep them out of trouble.

I also have four granddaughters ranging in age from 3 to 10. The entire family resides on the Upper West Side where I have remained since I first arrived at Columbia in 1959.

I have been married and divorced twice and have had a loving and regarding relationship with my significant other for 16 years now.

I am and architect and sculptor. I practiced architecture full time for 45 years during which time I had a private practice for 20 years which focused on "social architecture". I then spent 16 years directing the planning, design and construction of facilities for the Phoenix House Foundation----a large national non-profit substance abuse treatment agency.”

Conrad’s very interesting note is available in its entirety on the web site,, along with photos of some of his sculptures.

Sadly, one old friend who I had hoped to share a toast with will not be joining us at our 50th. I just learned from his widow Anne that Gil Einstein has died from congestive heart failure. Gil and I go back as friends to before our teens, and I will remember him fondly. Recently at one of our class lunches he regaled Frank Partel, Tom O’Connor, and me with hilarious stories, possibly true, of his days in the Navy. Requiescat in pace, Gil.

September 2012 Issue

Our 50th Reunion is now only 8 months away! If you haven’t already marked your calendar for May 30 – June 2 next year, do it now. This is the big one and none of us should miss it. Columbia and the 50th Reunion Committee are planning a memorable weekend for you. If you want to join the committee or have suggestions for our program, please contact me.

On Class Day, Henry Black, Doron Gopstein, Harvey Cantor, Lee Lowenfish, joined me for the Parade of Classes and helped carry the class of 1963 flag (Don Margolis, who has joined me in past years, had to cancel at the last minute). Harvey’s youngest daughter, Elizabeth, graduated with the class of 2012. Congratulations to both! This event is great fun and it is a wonderful opportunity to join graduates and their families at one of the most joyful days of their lives. I was struck at how many families were celebrating the graduation of the first in their family to graduate from college. Thrilling – join us next year.

Larry Neuman and Herb Soroca joined me at the annual crew reunion and lunch at Gould Boathouse for oarsmen from the 50s and 60s. It was great to see so many guys back from the early 60s. Next year let’s get all the rowers from ’63 back on the Friday of our 50th Reunion. I’ll be calling each of you!

I’m sad to report that Yoshi Fujisawa has died. His daughter, Natsuko Fujisawa writes, “I regret to inform you that my father, Yoshiharu (Yoshi) Fujisawa, passed away on March 15th, 2012, due to pancreatic cancer. He retired in June, 2011, from the CEO/Chairman position of Internix Inc, which he founded in 1970.”

I also learned recently that William F. Finley Jr. died in New York City, on April 14, 2012. Bill met Brian De Palma at Columbia and was in the core group that joined him to bring coeducation to Sarah Lawrence. He was an actor in many of Brian’s films, most memorably as the star of Phantom of the Paradise (1974).

Ken Ostberg writes, “We've (Andi and I) have been happily and busily retired for 7 years and pass most of the year in Winston-Salem. We've just celebrated our thirtieth anniversary, share good health, remain very active and involved in the community and, when we're not in Winston we're someplace else on the globe. I recently returned from 5 weeks in Japan, South Korea and China. We head to the shores (East and West) of Lake Michigan in late July followed by a couple of weeks in Toronto, the queen city of North America. We're also now beginning planning for a fall trip to Scandinavia. Our older daughter, Kristen, is a special education teacher working with severe and multiply handicapped children and Adrienne, our younger, completes her MFA in documentary film at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro next May. While both are in serious relationships, neither is yet married and there are, as yet, no grandchildren. Andi hopes that situation changes soon because she desperately wants to be a grandmother. Life is good!”

Marty Greenfield writes, “Just to let you know that I am married with 3 children and 4 grandchildren. My eldest daughter is a graduate of Columbia College class of 1991. I am an endocrinologist in a very large group practice in Lake Success, NY. I am on the governing Council of the NY State Medical Society, having previously served as President of the Nassau County Medical Society. I am also on the Board of Directors of the Lower NY Chapter of the American Assoc. of Clinical Endocrinologists. In my spare time, I serve on several committees of the North Shore LIJ Health System.”

Barry Reiss reports that David Rubinson is now living in France. David, let us know more about your life’s adventures!

Henry Black has written Hypertension, A Companion to Braunwald’s Cardiology, which has recently been published.

Roland Droitsch writes, “I am here living in Washington, DC a stone's throw away from the Capitol. Am having a family get together and it will be a joy for me. Am retired after spending years in the Federal government as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy at the U.S. Department of Labor. Think about Columbia and the good times there. I have not heard from Michael Silbert and would like to get a brief notice, if possible.” Michael, write Roland (and me).

Paul Reale will have a CD released of his complete violin works, performed by Jessica Mathaes on the Centaur label in the fall of 2012.

If you live in the Bay Area, you should get on Mike Nolan’s email list. I enjoy it from the East Coast. Mike always has something interesting going, a musical evening, a party at a local venue, or even genealogical research. You can reach him at

Mike Lubell writes, “Laura Appelman and I were married last December in a small ceremony conducted by Joette Katz, Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Children and Families and a former Connecticut Supreme Court Justice. Laura, who hails originally from Chicago, is an artist, currently working in polymer clay. Her new focus is on unique hand crafted jewelry, which garnered attention at spring craft shows in New York and Chicago. Her website is

My daughter, Karina ‘02, continues to do antitrust work for Shearman and Stirling. She is now living in Washington, DC, and is celebrating her fifth anniversary with husband, Romain, who works at KPMG in Tyson's Corner.

I am still commuting weekly (or more) between New York and Washington, carrying out my physics teaching duties at CCNY and public affairs work for the American Physical Society (APS) from a suite in the National Press Building. Amtrak and Delta love me.

I've pioneered an interactive mode of teaching to keep 300 students engaged in Intro Astronomy. Using a wireless hand-held mic, I roam the lecture hall playing Jerry Springer, but without the pathos, engaging the students with Q and A throughout. The students love it and their grades demonstrate its success. I've continued to teach a seminar on science, science policy and politics to students in CUNY's Macaulay Honors College.

In Washington, I continue to run the successful public affairs group for APS, which now counts seven members, who focus on science lobbying, policy and media. In addition I have become a member of the board of the Task Force on American Innovation and a consultant to Our Energy Policy Foundation.

Most recently I have begun another gig as an opinion writer for Roll Call, one of the three Capitol Hill newspapers with a circulation of 20,000.  I am still writing my "Inside the Beltway" column for APS News that reaches 50,000 readers worldwide.

So my life continues to be busy and enjoyable, so much so that I don't even think about retirement.”

Bill Burley writes, “Separated my left shoulder in a bike crash in Hungary.  Nevertheless, I am still training on the bike and planning to race up Mt. Washington on July 7. Fortunately I'm racing against others in our age group, so if some 20 and 30 somethings beat me, so be it. I'll send along a photo from the top when (not if) I get there.”

Bob Heller writes, “I am pleased to report that my son, David, was just honored by Prep for Prep at its annual dinner for his contributions to the work of that organization. It is an educational leadership development program that prepares selected inner city kids of color, places them at independent schools and provides them with ongoing support and life-changing opportunities. Following secondary school, the vast majority pursue their educations at Ivy League and other highly competitive colleges. Since the program began, 111 Prep for Prep students have graduated from Columbia and 26 are currently enrolled. 156 have gone to Harvard, David's alma mater.

My daughter, Pamela Heller, a Brown alumna, is president of Project Morry, another successful program for inner city kids. Project Morry is a year-round youth development organization that offers each child a multi-year commitment anchored by a residential summer camp experience each year. The children, for whom these experiences would not otherwise be available, benefit from a network of support and gain increased social skills, enhanced self-esteem, positive core values and a greater sense of personal responsibility.

Many of them go on to college as well. Pam has been on the board for several years as has David.

Amy and I (we celebrate our 47th anniversary in July) are proud of both David and Pam. Yes, there is that one blemish, I could not persuade either one of them to go to Columbia, but we'll see about the grandchildren, the oldest of whom is only 9. Not too early to start lobbying.”

David Orme-Johnson writes, “As it turns out, this is a very active time in my career. I just got a review paper accepted on the effects of Transcendental Meditation on coronary heart disease (blood pressure, cardiovascular reactivity to stressors, congestive heart disease, angina, atherosclerosis, and left ventricular hypertrophy). I also just spent a year learning about meta-analysis and just submitted my first one on the effects of TM on perceptual-motor behavior under time pressure (rapid fire pistol shooting, driving speed, 50-meter dash, etc.).

My wife Rhoda and I just went to her 50th Vassar reunion and it was so much fun and inspiring being around all those intelligent and lively people that I definitely want to come to our 50th next year. We are now on an extension of that trip through Vermont, Quebec and New Hampshire, sightseeing and visiting friends and family and me doing watercolors of the beautiful landscapes. We gave some lectures on TM in Quebec, Rhoda on her book of Maharishi on language and literature, which she delivered in French, and me on the TM research, delivered in jargon. Hope everyone comes to our reunion.”

Frank Sypher is the author of: “Strangers and Pilgrims: A Centennial History of The Laymen's Club of the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine” (New York: The Laymen's Club, 2012). The Laymen's Club, founded in 1908, has sponsored numerous projects in the construction of the cathedral, especially the Pilgrims' Pavement, dedicated in 1934. Since then the club has supported many further additions to the cathedral, especially of sculpture and other structural features. The club played a prominent role in observances at the joyous reopening of the cathedral in 2008 after a program of renovation. Other volumes of church history by Frank are: "St. James' Church in the City of New York 1810-2010" (2010) and "St. Agnes Chapel of the Parish of Trinity Church in the City of New York 1892-1943" (2002).

Harley Frankel reports that his non-profit College Match had its best year ever in getting low-income students into the nation's great colleges. For details, visit their web site at

Jerry D. Glickson, Professor of Radiology and Director of Molecular Imaging at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, was awarded the Gold Medal from the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine for introduction of NMR spectroscopy to the study and management of cancer. The award was made in Montreal, Canada on May 9, 2011 and was shared with John R. Griffiths, M.D., of Cambridge University.

Steve Barcan is celebrating his 70th birthday by taking his whole family (12 people) on a cruise to Bermuda where he and his wife, Bettye honeymooned in 1965. He met her 50 years ago at Columbia when she was a Barnard freshman.

Gershon Levinson writes, “I am still working away as President of Northern California Anesthesia Physicians, Inc. My youngest son, Jonathan, did five years as an Army infantry officer and then went to Columbia SIPA and received his Masters this June. My oldest son, Charles, is Jerusalem Bureau Chief for the Wall Street Journal.” Gershon also added, “I definitely plan to attend reunion.” How many of you have already decided to attend? Drop me an email and let me know. Also, let me know who of your classmates you most want to see after 50 years. Join the committee and let’s make sure they all come!

Ken Master is a retired physician splitting his year between Boynton Beach, Florida and New York City. He plays golf regularly with David Saxe who still serves as a Justice in the Appellate Division, First Judicial Department of New York. Both of them came to our regular lunch in June along with 7 of our regulars. These lunches at the Columbia Club are a great place to reconnect. If you’re back in NYC, try to make one of the next Class of `63 lunches, scheduled for September 13, October 11, and November 8 – it’s always the second Thursday. Check our Web site at for details.

In the meantime, make plans for attending our 50th reunion! And, as always, let us know what you are up to, how you’re doing, and what’s next.

June 2012 Issue

I hope that you all have marked your calendar for May 30 – June 2 next year, our 50th Reunion is just a year off. The 50th Reunion Committee is planning a memorable weekend for you, and we hope to see each and every one of you. If you want to join the committee or have suggestions for our program, please contact me.

I am sad to share these reports of the deaths of our classmates: Ilze Marovskis writes, “I am the widow of John Marovskis, who graduated from Columbia in 1963. John passed on November 3, 2011. Cause of death - complications from cancer. A ‘coda’ was published in Volume 14, Number 6 of 'The Audiophile Voice'.”

Al Baumgarten reports that our classmate, Charles (Chuck) Kleinhaus died in Jerusalem on March 9. He writes, “Chuck was my classmate not only at Columbia but also at Ramaz, from Grade 3 to the end of High School. We were also neighbors in Jerusalem for over 20 years.”

I also have been informed that James F. Brogan Jr. died in Charlestown, Mass., on December 26. If any of you would like to share your memories of our classmates, please send them to me.

David Alpern reports that the hunt goes on for new foundation grants and tax-deductible corporate underwriting to keep his FOR YOUR EARS ONLY weekend radio and Internet program alive. Over the winter the show won a place in the database of Grantmakers in Film+Electronic Media (, and launched a YouTube channel for its audio interviews:

Bruce (Jeff) Wechsler writes, “I can let you know that I sold the major part of my Chicago real estate portfolio in 2009. I am now semi-retired and officeing with an affiliated company doing real estate consulting and investing. On another vein, my son Jeremy opened his new theater called Theater Wit with 3 99 seat theaters. The building was completely remodeled and houses not only his own productions but that of other local theater companies. My other son David is the business manager of Theater Wit - a real family project.”

Your former class correspondent, Sid Kadish passed on a fascinating letter from Sy Moskowitz, who is now a law professor at Valparaiso University. Sy, with family and friends completed the “Kili Trek,” the hike and ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. His letter describes the exhausting 6-day and 5-night trek. I will post it with Sy’s permission on our web site, Sy, thanks for showing us all that at 70 not even the highest mountain in Africa could stop you.

Michael Hassan wrote further details about his move to Mexico. Here are a few extracts, the rest is (you guessed it, on our web site). “After 8 years of traveling I'm living in Cabo San Lucas where I landed in 2009. I loved and still love traveling but those long trips were getting harder and harder on my body and I began missing more and more, family and friends. Additionally, traveling a lot means you compromise your diet, exercise regimen as well as relationships so it was time to reorganize my priorities.

I got here from Los Angeles by sail boat after a one month leisurely but maiden voyage on the SSV Calypso, a 45' beautiful ketch owned and operated by my best friend and her husband. Their blog is very professional and if anyone is interested in the life of a ‘cruiser’ or just plain entertainment with great photos, here's the place to go: Tell them the permanent second mate sent you.

People living in Cabo San Lucas are called Choyeros, that's me. It's just a brilliant cactus in its design but I suggest you look and don't touch. (But my friends at Columbia can call me Mexico Mike.)

Soon after landing I decided to develop beach home properties on the Pacific Coast of Mexico. It's a magical area with high mountains and Pacific beaches so I bought several pieces of land and have just finished building the first beach home. It's for sale so all comers/tire kickers/the curious are welcome. Here's the website: where you can see photos.

Life is wonderful being retired but requires almost the same amount of changes as growing up just of a different variety, direction and tone. Speaking of tone, I've lost mine but I'm at the gym now and intend to get it back.”

Art Eisenson writes, “As I recall, my last update was that the TV Writers Class Action Age Discrimination suits settled. About fourteen months ago we distributed $41,000,000 to writers whose careers were lost or damaged. The settlement also created the Fund for the Future, the mission statement of which is here: In December, 2011, I was elected President of the Board of Governors of the Fund for the Future.”

Jonah Raskin writes, [I was] co-captain of the 1962 Old Blue Rugby Club, retired as of January 2012 after 30 years of teaching at Sonoma State University and 14 books including most recently Marijuanaland: Dispatches from an American War and Rock 'n' Roll Women: Portraits of a Generation.

Mel Gurtov writes, “Although I officially retired from university teaching in 2010, I continue to be quite involved in academic work. I'll give 3 examples: I remain editor in chief of Asian Perspective, an international quarterly; I am now organizing an international conference on "Engaging Enemies"; and I am finishing a book entitled Will This Be China's Century?

Elliott Greher writes, “Recently my family attended the wedding of my first grandchild, Isaac Hersh. He does not have parents so I walked him down the aisle. What a thrill.”

Alexis Levitin sends the latest update, “I am still teaching English (and Greek Tragedy) full-time at SUNY-Plattsburgh and still translating from the Portuguese and now the Spanish. Recent books include Tapestry of the Sun: An Anthology of Ecuadorian Poetry and Brazil:  A Traveler's Literary Companion. In the fall, I will go on a 3 month reading tour with a prize-winning Brazilian poet Salgado Maranhao, presenting bilingually from one of his collections, Blood of the Sun (Milkweed Editions, Sept. 2012). We will be reading at Dartmouth, Yale, Middlebury, Williams, the New York State Writers Institute, Univ. of North Carolina, Univ. of Texas/Dallas, Univ. of Arkansas/Fayetteville, Univ. of Iowa, Indiana Univ., Univ. of Southern Illinois, Univ. of Georgia, and various other venues. If any fellow Columbians might be interested in inviting us to read at their institution, they are welcome to get in touch with me at Salgado’s collected poems, The Color of the Word, has just won Brazil’s highest award, the Premio de Poesia da Academia Brasileira de Letras, for the year 2011.

After that tour I plan to take it easy for a month in the Galapagos, then go to Paris for a few weeks, then go to Burkina-Faso to work on a translation of the first anthology of poetry ever complied in that small African country. Meanwhile, I continue to work with younger poets from Ecuador, such as Anna Minga and Santiago Vizcaino.

My son, Michael, is now 35 and is the editor of Occupied Wall Street and My daughter Christine, aged 25, is just beginning to work behind the scenes with a film crew in New York.

I remain single and, since I don't have a shrink, I have no idea why.”

Michael Bumagin sends his greetings from Fort Worth, “Here in Texas we're finally getting a little rain (the water table remains low, however). The grass is green and the daffodils are in bloom. Two of my children are incubating the next grandkids (due in August to bring the total to EIGHT -- my GOD, am I really 70?). Bruce Miller, Arnie Barkman, Bob Whelan and I still hold periodic meetings of the CC '63 local FW/D bagel club, but it's been a while since we noshed together.

I'm hoping to induce the other three AND Harry Lesch (who's in Eureka California raising his 2 fine sons) to join me for the fiftieth.

I'm working on the second edition of Exploring Fort Worth with Children; Legends of the Vampire (both volumes, are still available) remain popular with fans who demand better writing than is seen in the Twilight books. I'm happy to send autographed copies to anyone who is interest (Email: DrMike9151@SBCGlobal.NET for details).

Enough advertising. More as it becomes known. See y'all on Campus in '13.”

Bill Burley sent a picture of himself on a cycling trip in Italy's Dolomites last May celebrating my 70th birthday (see He writes, “I'm training (yep, I have a coach) for five time trial races to be held this summer cycling up New England's mountains. The Mt. Washington race is July 7. By the end of June I will have accumulated 8 to 9,000 miles for 2011-2012. I'll be wearing Columbia University cycling gear for at least one event. I'm competing against others in my age group, so the young ‘Tour d' France’ hopefuls have nothing to worry about from me.

My bride, Suzanne and I have been married for 43 years and live in Chatham on Cape Cod. For the past ten years Suzanne and I have traveled to NYC in January where I pipe in the haggis at the Penn Club to celebrate the birthday of Robert Burns. I also pipe for weddings and funerals. If any classmate knows the date of their coming demise and would like a piper at their funeral, book me now 'cause the calendar is filling up.”

Marty Greenfield writes, “Just to let you know that I am married with 3 children and 4 grandchildren. My eldest daughter is a graduate of Columbia College class of 1991. I am an endocrinologist in a very large group practice in Lake Success, NY. I am on the governing Council of the NY State Medical Society, having previously served as President of the Nassau County Medical Society. I am also on the Board of Directors of the Lower NY Chapter of the American Assoc. of Clinical Endocrinologists. In my spare time, I serve on several committees of the North Shore LIJ Health System.”

Ira Malter writes, “Retired from practice in Suffolk County in 2008. Spend winters in Scottsdale (AZ) and summers in Dorset (VT), Have partial season tickets to Boston Red Sox and Arizona Diamondbacks. Looking forward to 2013.”

Peter Belfiore writes, “I married a Barnard girl in 1966, and we are still married and still having a wonderful time. Lucky for me I was in the West End that fateful night sucking on a Marlboro and sipping a scotch--though we only looked at each other, did not actually speak, till the next day on the Barnard lawn.

I have been writing all these years--poetry, fiction, plays, librettos, filmscripts--most of it alas not published. But I've never made a great effort to publish, I just wanted to write and write and write, my main wish and desire has been to remain interested in my own stuff, which I have. My wife, Betty, who became a classical scholar, has been the much-published writer, with her latest book coming out in a couple of days (Socrates' Daimonic Art: Love for Wisdom in Four Platonic Dialogues).

All my jobs have been for the purpose of finding time to write, but the often involuntary associations have been fascinating and I'm glad I had them. I've taught college English, been an editor, and retired a number of years ago as a social worker licensed in Minnesota, to which we moved in 1980 to follow Betty's job at the University of Minnesota.

Our son and his wife live in Woodstock (the town, not the big psychedelic field) with our granddaughters (three and seven).

Betty and I are both retired now, and still have many writing projects going. At the moment I'm working on a filmscript/novella less and less related to Melville's much under-appreciated novel, Israel Potter.

I continue to remember Columbia most fondly as the place where, for the first time in my life, intelligent, often distinguished people took us seriously as thinking beings engaged with them in a common quest.

One story about that. Freshman year, in Donald Frame's Humanities A1 course, I went up to him at the end of the class and said something like, ‘You know, I sometimes think that there's no such thing as truth, only beauty.’ And he leaned back, took a drag on a cigarette--probably a Camel-- and said, with total sincerity and kindness, ‘You know, I sometimes think so myself.’

I like being a grandpa, but you do know you're getting old when, as your 2-year-old granddaughter is about to take a running jump down a hill into the air expecting you to catch her, your middle-aged son strolls by and says, ‘Look out, now, you might break Grandpa’.”

Mike Bowler sent me a great long note, some I have added here (the rest is on our web site). “I don’t know if I’ll make the 50th reunion next year but will try. If we do get to New York, it will also be our 50th wedding anniversary. Margaret French (Barnard ’64) and I were married in the Columbia chapel on June 1, 1963, a Saturday that year as it will be next year, right in the middle of our reunion. To get things off on the right foot I took her to a Mets double-header the next day. Odd, the things you remember. My last meal as a single was breakfast at Prexy’s en route to the chapel. I remember almost nothing about the earlier commencement, including the speaker. Margaret will retire this summer after a distinguished career as a community college professor and administrator. I haven’t been full-time since ’07 but keep busy as a writer, consultant and member of the Baltimore County (MD) Board of Education. Our grandson Michael got a first name from me but lots of smarts from his parents and grandma. I’ll miss him when he goes off to middle school this fall from the local elementary, where I read to kindergartners every Thursday. How could 49 years have gone by?


March 2012 Issue

Homecoming brought back the usual group of die-hard Columbia ’63 Football fans hoping (in vain) for a victory. On a beautiful fall day, my wife Ruth and I joined Steve, Barcan, Henry Black, Richard and Alice Gochman, Larry Neuman, Phil Satow, and Walter and Helen Stein under the Homecoming tent. We bumped into Jerry Dwyer, and his wife, son and grandchildren on the way to the game.

It’s very hard to believe but by the time you get this we will be only 15 months away from our 50th Reunion. I hope that you have all marked your calendar for Thursday, May 2, 2013 to Sunday, May 5, 2013. We’d like to see you all back for this remarkable milestone. Also, if you’d like to join our newly-formed reunion planning committee, please send me an email – we’d welcome your ideas and company.

Howard Spodek writes, “My serious academic study of India began while I was an undergraduate at Columbia College ’63 and took the fabulous, courses in “Oriental Humanities” and “Oriental Civilizations,” both newly designed complements to Western Humanities and CC. (By the time my son Josh ’93 took these courses they had been renamed “Asian Humanities” and “Asian Civilizations.”). Many great teachers taught in these programs. For me, Ainslee Embree was the professor who revealed their richness.

The payoffs for these courses continue to flow. I wrote a college-level textbook, The World’s History, published with Prentice Hall, and now in a 4th edition. The core courses – Western and Asian – at Columbia provided the soil out of which this enterprise has grown.  Then just this year, I published Ahmedabad: Shock City of Twentieth Century India, with Indiana University Press – a somewhat more indirect result of the study that began at Columbia. I also published a translation – with co-translators Devavrat N. Pathak and John Wood – of the six-volume Autobiography of Indulal Yagnik, an important second tier political leader in the Gujarat region of India through much of the twentieth century. The translation, from the Gujarati, was actually more-or-less completed in 1985, thanks to a grant from the Smithsonian Institution, and made available at that time to scholars in a few selected research libraries in the USA and India. (This was the era before computer word processing. The materials were in typescript and Xerox copies.) Finally, last year, the Gujarat Vidyapith, a university founded by Mahatma Gandhi in 1920, decided to provide a subvention to publish the entire bibliography in multi-volume book form through Manohar Publishers in New Delhi. These enterprises all began as seeds at Columbia.

My graduate studies continued at the University of Chicago, and since 1972 I have been a faculty member in the History Department at Temple University, Philadelphia.

On Sunday, the 18th of September, I flew back to Ahmedabad to carry out additional research on the processes of city planning, funded by a fellowship from the American Institute of Indian Studies. I should be there for about a year. I welcome visits from fellow alumni – and I look forward to visiting the new Columbia Center in Mumbai.”

Paul Leher writes, “I am continuing to serve as a clinical psychologist and professor of psychiatry at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. After all of these years, I think I have finally figured out how to do it, so I'm not planning to retire any time soon. For the past 40 years I have been doing research and clinical practice in what has become known as 'mind body medicine', as well as cognitive behavior therapy. I recently received funding from NIH for a two-center randomized controlled trial of biofeedback therapy as a treatment for asthma. After teaching all this time at one institution, I am beginning to see my students receive support for similar research, and I have been collaborating with several of them in their own projects. Nothing could give an old professor more pleasure.

My wife Phyllis continues her active concert and teaching career as a pianist and piano pedagogue through Westminster College of the Arts at Rider University. We have five lovely grandchildren, two in nearby Princeton where our son-in-law Jonathan is an administrator and our daughter teaches the piano, and three in Tajikistan, where our son is a USAID officer and our daughter-in-law takes care of procurements for the US embassy.

In the past few years I have kept up with three good friends from Columbia: Richard Weisman, who teaches sociology at York University in Toronto, Ontario, Robert Martin, who recently retired as professor of philosophy at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Peter Winokur `64, a retired teacher who lives in New York. It is indeed wonderful that such important ties continue to thrive.”

Harley Frankel sends his latest College Match 2011 results, “We are pleased to report that our 2011 graduating seniors have done quite well in college acceptances despite this admissions cycle being one of the most competitive and difficult in our nation’s history. This has been our most successful year including the following: 51% of the 2011 College Match seniors were admitted into an Ivy League university or an Ivy-equivalent like MIT, Stanford and Wellesley. Almost two-thirds of our seniors (65%) have been admitted to colleges ranked higher than any UC, including UC-Berkeley. Virtually all of our 2011 seniors were admitted into one Top Tier college. Over the past three years, our students (including our 2011 seniors) have raised their average SAT scores by approximately 350 points. Important Note: The total amount of financial assistance that our seniors received represents a 2000% return on our investment.”

Ezra Cohen writes, “. For me, not much is new and, at this stage of life, having no news is good news. I’m practicing bankruptcy law in Atlanta. I have practiced at the same firm (Troutman Sanders) for my entire legal career, except for about four halcyon years as a Bankruptcy Judge in the 1970’s. For me, the practice of law is a heady mixture of commerce and scholarship. I have always loved it and now, with less pressure, I am enjoying it. My wife and I are raising our granddaughter, now a teenager, and that has been a rejuvenating experience. Fortunately, my wonderful wife is doing the heavy lifting in that endeavor. I’ve been in touch recently with Richard Gochman, who left the Manhattan to move to Rip Van Winkle country in upstate New York. He is still married to the lovely woman he met as a student at Columbia, and that’s awe-inspiring. I’ve also been in touch with Mike Baybak `66, now living in Los Angeles and the father of five daughters. I sent him an autobiography of my post-Columbia years, and he sent me a hilarious recording of him and a friend playing a rowdy song from the 80’s (‘Money for Nothing” by the Dire Straits).”

Jerry Kessler writes, “Greetings from the Left Coast, where I've been living since 1963. After graduating from UCLA Law School, I was admitted to practice here in 1966. Since then, I have maintained a private practice, concentrating on estate planning, business and transactional real estate matters. At the same time, I have been active as a cellist in the record, motion picture and television industries, and playing solo concerts and chamber music. I worked extensively with Frank Zappa and performed under Pierre Boulez. I've been a member of ‘The Simpsons’ orchestra for 21 years, and currently work on shows such as ‘Family Guy’. Since 1982, I have been Music Director and Conductor of the Topanga Symphony. Our concerts feature nationally known soloists and often include world premieres of works by Los Angeles composers. Daughter Jennifer is a French hornist, promoter of musical outreach and intellectual symposia, blogger and yoga teacher. She has performed with the Berlin Philharmonic and at the Newport Jazz Festival. She is currently an Abreu Fellow of El Sistema USA, at New England Conservatory in Boston. Daughter Amy had worked with autistic children and is completing her doctorate in Physical Therapy in Los Angeles. She's married and, when not immersed in her studies, plays beach volleyball. In 2007, I married Joyce Miller (mother of 4, grandmother of 10). We live in the foothills above Los Angeles. Whenever time permits, we travel. Favorite US destinations have included the California coast, the San Juan Islands, NYC and the Adirondacks and Florida. Abroad, we've visited England, Ireland, France, Italy, Israel, Mexico, Costa Rica and islands of the Caribbean. My travel photography (some award-winning) appears in exhibits, and on collection walls, in California.

In recent years, I have stayed in touch with such Columbians as Richard Beeson `59, Ed Coller, Frank Kalibat, Joel Krosnick, Peter Landecker and Michael Shapiro `62, and often see Melvyn Werbach `62.”

Robert Shaler writes, “In 1986 I became a professional daguerreotypist, and the adventures and challenges of modern daguerreotypy (rhymes with lobotomy) have proved unending.  I made subterranean daguerreotypes in Carlsbad Caverns, daguerreotypes of the Moon, of lightning, of solar eclipses, of nudes, of the heads of state at the 1997 G-8 meeting in Denver (they all moved during the exposure—the result was so abstract that it won an award from the Friends of Contemporary Art at a show in the Museum of Fine Arts here in Santa Fe), portraits of a great many remarkable people, and my favorite, landscapes.  With a process as given to failure as the daguerreotype it is comforting to know that the subject will still be there tomorrow for another try. The culmination of my career was reconstructing the lost daguerreotypes from John Charles Frémont’s fifth expedition of 1853.  The result of six years of the most pleasurable work imaginable was a book, Sights Once Seen (Museum of New Mexico Press, 2000) that contains reproductions of 121 of my daguerreotypes (it received a postage-stamp review in CCT about ten years ago), and a museum show that opened in Santa Fe and traveled the country for five years.  It is now in crates under my bed, and if I ever sell it I will have made about the minimum wage for the time it took me to create it. People often ask me how I make a living as a daguerreotypist, to which my stock reply is: “Most people wouldn’t call it a living.”

While working on the Frémont project I came across an album containing some one hundred sketches by the topographic artist Richard Kern, made in the field while he was employed on the Gunnison expedition of 1853.  The album is now in the Newberry Library in Chicago, an unknown national treasure that constitutes the first extensive visual document of the Rocky Mountains.  Since the summer of 2000 I have been searching out the views Kern depicted in the drawings and photographing them from his point of view. The fieldwork is now probably concluded and I am almost finished with the writing; publication is planned for 2013. I seem to have returned to my college major, art history, although of a peculiar sort.  When asked my occupation I now call myself a ‘visual historian of western exploration,’ and if pressed further I add: ‘specializing in the year 1853.’

I used to miss good bagels, for no such thing is available here commercially and the published recipes are frankly inadequate. After a year of work that used up a hundred fifty pounds of high-gluten flour in four or five test batches a week, I succeeded in baking my own; all who try my product proclaim it “the best bagel they have ever tasted,” and my popularity has grown significantly.  I don’t sell them because that would turn pleasure into labor and ruin the spirit; when I bake a batch I make a “bagel run” into town to distribute them among friends gratis.  I am happy to send my complete eleven-page method (it’s really not difficult but some details are important,) to any who desire excellence in bagels; just e-mail me at”

Christian Rieger sent me the following, “This email is to inform you, though I may not have been found, indeed, unlike Michael Rockefeller, I am not missing.

Years ago, when I was seeking Bob Vargas, I met the August 2006 class notes and wondered who reported me missing. ( I had no idea I was missing. There was no notice anywhere, not even on a milk carton. Then I thought of Tolkien’s line: ‘Not all those who wander are lost.’

In 1973, my favorite ex-girlfriend threw me out of New York and I moved to a beach to get over it. Beaches, actually. They include: Miami (and Your-ami, too), Tampa, Key West, Fort Lauderdale, Montserrat (pre-volcano), St. John, St. Thomas, El Viejo San One, and now Cabarete on the north shore of the Dominican Republic. Like you, my adult life has gone through many distinct and adventurous stages, of which I will speak at another time. Meanwhile, be it known, though I am not missing, I may be lost.


December 2011 Issue

Tons of news this issue! I’ve had to brutally edit to get it into this space, so go to to read full copy (and see pictures). You’ll also find notes from Howard Spodek, Paul Leher, Harley Frankel, Ezra Cohen, and Jerry Kessler, which, because of space I’ve had to hold for the next issue.

David Alpern has won a $25,000 grant from the Nathan Cummings Foundation, matching a $25,000 challenge grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, to continue and expand the hour-long FOR YOUR EARS ONLY weekend radio and podcast program that has produced and hosted since 1982.up until last year as Newsweek On Air. The new funding –along with promised support from the Paley Center for the Media in New York and the Council on Hemispheric Affairs in Washington--will permit efforts continued operations for at least another six months. But more donations and grants are required to add new stations, more college interns, and new presence on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Zev bar-Lev (né Rob Lefkowitz) writes, “My challenging year, too good to keep private: In December of last year, after a difficult open-heart operation (complicated by my asthma, a long-standing chronic cough, and my corpulence (225 lbs.), I had a stroke, and went into a coma. My wife Shoshana (née Jane Wirth Barnard 63) sat by my bed, urging me to wake up. And I did … just five months later! It's rare enough to wake up after one month in coma. I had "slept through" my final semester of teaching, but had also lost 55 lbs. … AND my asthma and cough were mysteriously gone. After several months of rehab, I'm almost as good when I was 30: I can walk upstairs and down. My mind and memory were miraculously unaffected by the coma and stroke; I'll be teaching my "adult -ed Hebrew course, for which I just wrote a new version of my textbook (this version brings my innovative "key-letter" system to the very beginning of elementary Hebrew study. Although fully retired now, I'll also be teaching my "Language & Politics" course at San Diego State U. in spring semester.”

Peter Gollon and his wife Abby Pariser '67Barnard are delighted at the birth of their daughter Kate's son and their first grandson, Blake. Being retired allows them to travel between Kate's family in Rhode Island and their son David and 3 1/2 year old granddaughter Olivia in Burlington, VT.

When not visiting friends or family or otherwise on vacation, Peter continues to advance his liberal politics through activity in the New York Civil Liberties Union, where he served on its Board of Directors for 25 years and was just elected Director-Emeritus.

He's also putting his physics background to good use as the Energy Chair of the Long Island Sierra Club, from which position he's trying to move the local electric utility to faster implementation of its energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. He's motivated by his knowledge that "Climate change is real, and is driven by human-produced carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and what we and other countries do or don't do to limit it will have a profound effect on the world which we leave to our children and grandchildren."

Michael Bumagin writes, I have 36 hours left in my seventh decade and my favorite birthday present so far is a scrub suit embroidered with the Columbia Lion! If I'd known I'd live so long I'd have taken better care of myself!

Byron Cohen writes, “I have had a Contemporary art Gallery for 16 years. We have closed our physical space and know do all of our shows on the Internet. We advertise in ART NEWS and represent some great Contemporary artists. Our new website is I would love to hear from my classmates.”

Peter Slocum writes that he “was married between freshman/sophomore years at Columbia College. Went to Cambridge University for grad degree and stayed in England with Merrill Lynch. Subsequently was CEO of three banks in London, Beirut and the Bahamas. Now working in investment business in Carefree, AZ, with oldest son. Portfolio consists of four children, nine grandchildren and one great grandchild.” Peter, great name for a town, I hope it is.

Carey Winfrey retired September 30th after ten years as editor of Smithsonian magazine. Asked his future plans by the Washington Post, Winfrey replied: “Something between writing the Great American Novel and a lot of emails.” He was only the third editor in the magazine’s 40-year history.

After more than 35 years in the Washington DC area, David Chessler `74PhD (Grad Facs) is moving to Waltham MA to be nearer his children and grandchildren, and further from hurricanes and earthquakes.

David Orme-Johnson writes, “We are spending summers in Fairfield Iowa, where some of our kids and many friends live and where the university we helped found is, Maharishi University of Management. Winters are in the Florida Panhandle, our main residence, between Destin and Panama City, a very beautiful area.

I am still writing papers, mainly reviews and meta-analysis of research on Transcendental Meditation, and painting some. I learned pastel painting this summer, and am now taking a water color class. What a joy. We do long daily meditations with a group of about 2,000, working on personal enlightenment, and ostensibly creating coherence for the US, and going to a lot of concerts and musical events. Yes, in Fairfield, population 10,000. I tell my NY and West Coast friends that this is where the action is!”

Jack McMullen writes, “I am currently serving on the Boards of three venture-backed companies and also on the Boards of three civic organizations in Vermont. I was in New Zealand for adventure hiking last November and in a few months plan to go to Patagonia for another outdoors oriented trip -- this time with my fellow JD-MBA classmate, Ed Savage. I've attached a picture from the New Zealand trip for your use. I'm the one in the green shirt in the foreground.” [Visit our web site to see.]

Henry and Benita Black just returned from a trans-Atlantic crossing on the QM2, where they were enrolled in a Road Scholar course entitled, “An Insider's Perspective of London Theatre.” The course continued on land in London, where they were able to live what they had learned aboard ship. Henry reports that his Columbia class in Modern Drama with Bentley and Brustein stood him in good stead on the trip.

Robert Smith, writes, “I am still active in Psychiatric Research and practice. I am continuing research in biological mechanism and treatment of schizophrenia and autism as a Research Psychiatrist at the Nathan Kline Institute of Psychiatric Research, where I lead a research group and Research Professor of Psychiatry at NYU Medical School.  I also have a part-time private practice in Woodmere, NY where I lives, with his wife Sultana. He recently retired from Clinical and Research duties at Manhattan Psychiatric Center for 20 years and was chief of Psychopharmacology Consultation from 2000-2011.He has current research grants from Stanley Medical Research Foundation and other philanthropic sources. He is working on studies of metabolic side effects of antipsychotic drug, biological and clinical studies of smoking in schizophrenia, effects if varenicline in schizophrenia, and effects of yoga effects of metabolic, epigenetic, hormonal and psychopathology changes in schizophrenic patients. He is a member or fellow of prestigious organizations including American College of Neuropsychopharmacology and Collegium Internationale Psychopharmacology.”

Jeff Parson [APN1] (alias Jefferson Parson) writes, “My companion, Lauren Oliver, and I recently helped to organize a very successful musical benefit for the northern-California-based EPIC (Environmental Protection Information Center), which is taking CalTrans (California Transportation Department) to court, contesting their plans to widen the highway (101) through Richardson Grove, a state park (just south of Garberville, CA) with one of the most beautiful remaining stands of ancient redwoods. We raised around $7,000 for EPIC's legal fund. The event included well-known environmental troubadours such as Joanne Rand and many local musicians, including my band, Raspberry Jam, which performed 12 of my original songs, five of them specifically about Richardson Grove. We also made a compilation CD of Richardson-Grove-inspired songs. Concurrently, I came up with the concept for a billboard that we installed on route 101, near Richardson Grove. The sign has 4 identical panels of an artist's (Marc Arceneaux) rendering of giant redwoods, with a banner headline that says ‘Richardson Grove – Our Future,’ but underneath each panel are the separate captions: Tourism? Lumber? Development? Inspiration?, asking viewers to decide what these ancient trees mean to them. For more information about the movement to protect Richardson Grove and other ‘Redwood Curtains,’ please contact EPIC at Anyone wanting a copy of the compilation CD (for a $10 donation) or copies of my other two CDs, ‘The Baby and the Bathwater’ and ‘Jefferson's Laments,’ please contact me at (Class of `63 discounts available!).”

Yoshiharu Fujisawa writes, “One big change took place recently. On June 20 I relinquished my ‘Chairman & CEO’ position at Internix Inc. which I founded in September, 1970, and got listed in the First Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange in 2004. I still retain the Honorary Chairman title, but basically I am retired and I am no longer a board member. I plan to concentrate on the nature and bio-diversity preservation activities which I have been involved in for almost two decades. After David Cohen passed away, I have not kept in touch with any of my classmates and I certainly look forward to knowing how they have been doing.” You’ll find pictures of Yoshi and his family on our web site.

After 8 years of serving the USDOJ as a pseudo-Special Master, monitoring and enforcing Microsoft’s compliance with the 2002 Final Judgments in the long running antitrust case, Harry Saal is “retired” once again, seeking the next big thing. Having two young grandchildren living nearby in Palo Alto seems to be filling all his available free time in the interim. His wife, Carol, has had a quite a challenging year, due to multiple rounds of chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant for mantle cell lymphoma. Carol is participating in a clinical trial of personalized immunotherapy which promises life-long immunity against a recurrence of her MCL.

Ira Malter reports that his wife Cynthia just completed a set of 5 murals for the new Sarabeths Restaurant in Tribecca at Jay and Greenwich Streets. “Have a look. We are living in Arizona in the winter and Vermont in the summer.”

Lee Lowenfish turned the summer of 2011 into a paradise of baseball travel and baseball writing for his blog at and also the and blogs.

He paid two trips to Cooperstown, once to speak on his new project on baseball scouting, “Competitors and Colleagues,” and the other time to attend the annual late July Hall of Fame inductions. He continues to speak on many campuses about his award-winning biography Branch Rickey: Baseball's Ferocious Gentleman (italicize please) and talked baseball in December 2011 before Columbia alumni groups in Tampa and Sarasota, Florida.

After 40 years Burt Brody reports that he is retiring (as Professor of Physics) from Bard College. He's keeping his home upstate (an 1817 farmhouse overlooking the Hudson) but spending most of his time residing in his city apartment near Lincoln Center, enjoying New York City.


July 2011 Issue

The mailbox has been strangely empty, and I hope that you will correct this situation immediately and let this correspondent share your adventures with the class.

One bit of very good news did cross my desk, Eric Foner, the DeWitt Clinton Professor of History at Columbia has been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for a distinguished book on the history of the United States, “The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery,” (W.W. Norton & Company). The Pulitzer committee called it “a well-orchestrated examination of Lincoln’s changing views of slavery, bringing unforeseeable twists and a fresh sense of improbability to a familiar story.” Eric called the award a capstone for his career. Although he has won multiple honors for his work focused on the Lincoln era and Reconstruction, he said, “the Pulitzer has a kind of broader importance and stature suggesting that your book is appreciated by a wider audience, a non-scholarly audience,” Eric, congratulations on this great honor.

Frank Sypher is curator of an exhibition at the Grolier Club, 47 East 60th Street, of books, manuscripts, prints, and other materials relating to the literary career of Letitia Elizabeth Landon (1802-1838), a British poet and novelist whose career has interested him for many years. The title of the show and accompanying catalogue is "The World of Letitia Elizabeth Landon: A Literary Celebrity of the 1830s." It opened on March 23rd and will be up through May 27th.

Steve Stollman writes, “I've wondered down through the ages what ever happened to some of my classmates: Ed Hardwick, Angry Young Poet from Trenton New Jersey who went to work for Mobil Oil after graduation, Mike [Steve supplied no last name], who played guitar and resembled Elvis, at least in his manner, and seems to have disappeared midway through, the fellows I went to High School with who became roommates, Spencer Heine whose dream it was to play JV Football and Bob Kornreich, who actually did play Varsity tennis. Another room-mate, Pravin Banker,’63E, turned his engineering degree into a ticket to IBM where he helped them decide where to put manufacturing plants around the world, and is now, yes, a banker, with his son, in Eastern Europe.

“I've heard tell of Bert Kleinman, who was a pal of mine all the way from grammar school days, who was the audio engineer for my Closed Circuit radio broadcasts from underneath Hamilton Hall. (He went on to become producer for Casey Kasem, the country's #1 most popular top-40 disk jockey and lately was in charge of our radio broadcasts, and maybe even TV, into Iraq. Got to show all those folks what they're missing). It was a dingy dungeon, soon to be made irrelevant by the state-of-the-art studios in the not even opened yet student center, but where else on campus could you smuggle in a co-ed without causing a riot?

“My current ambition is to trigger a new World's Fair that I'm thinking of calling The World's Unfair. It would be a bottom up affair, based on advancing the creative design of human-powered and human-scale transportation, bikes and trikes primarily, beyond their 19th century limited concepts, and without the usual temporary, virtually mandatory, Corporate and Government monuments to their own notable, if highly exaggerated, achievements.”

Joe Applebaum replied to my last invitation to the CC ’63 lunch, “I won't be able to make it. Right now, I am in Australia for a meeting of the International Actuarial Association and will be here until next Tuesday. It would be interesting to know if any of our classmates were further from Columbia at this moment.” Joe you might be, but not for long. At the lunch you missed, Steve Barcan told us he was on his way to Antarctica with his wife, Bettye. Don Margolis then filled Steve in on the high points of his trip to this same continent. He then rattled off an impressive list of recent destinations. Don may be our most traveled classmate, and I am still waiting for him to submit a report for this column. In the meantime, I’d ask all of you to at least list your recent travels, and I’ll publish them here to amaze your classmates.

Our regular Second Thursday lunches are a great place to reconnect. If you’re back in NYC, try to make the next Class of `63 lunch, scheduled for July 14, and then on September 8 (we take August off to go to the beach) – it’s always the second Thursday. Check our Web site at for details.

In the meantime, let us know what you are up to, how you’re doing, and what’s next.

May 2011 Issue

Robert Whelan wrote in response to my request of memories of the late Bill Shannon, “I was saddened when I read of Bill Shannon’s tragic death. You asked us to share memories of Bill. After a Columbia-Penn baseball game in Philadelphia, Bill persuaded me to go to a Cubs-Phillies game that evening. Bill was already working for the CUAA. He had a press pass of some kind, and we sat in the auxiliary press box by ourselves. We spent several innings pretending to do a play-by-play broadcast. Bill’s knowledge of baseball was phenomenal. He would say things that required far more than usual knowledge, such as ‘The Cubs starting pitcher, Bob Anderson, hails from Hammond, Indiana’. Bill loved and knew baseball, and he was a genuine nice guy.”

Bill Goebel also wrote, “I have very fond memories of Bill having interacting with him when I was basketball manager and Bill was a member of the Sports Information Department. Subsequently, when Columbia beat St. Johns in the 1968 Holiday Festival I mentioned to Bill that I thought Heywood Dotson should get the MVP for his play in that game. He told me that the New York sports media was pushing for Jim McMillan to get it, which he did. Jim subsequently got the Haggerty Award for three years running and, of course, starred in the NBA for many years. Bill was a fine gentleman that I know is sorely missed by all those who knew him.”

Frank Partel writes,Mary Ellen and I celebrated our 10th anniversary in Bourges during a trip to Brittany and Burgundy last fall. I am pleased to say she is now very healthy and we are feeling very grateful to an excellent team of doctors. My second novel, The Chess Players, A Novel of the Cold War at Sea, ISBN 978-0-615-41451-5, was officially published on March 1. The novel is a naval story and a love story set in 1967 just before and just after the Six-Day, Arab-Israeli War.I certainly didn’t want to disappoint Lionel Trilling, whom I took, who once said that every time some writer wants to locate a young character in New York, they are Columbia University students. Several scenes pertain to the Columbia area, and the main characters, ENS Cannon and Laetitia, are indeed associated with Columbia. There are cameo performances by a, LCDR Boris Neshamkin and LT Max Gorrin. A minor character, Professor John Meaney, is to a small degree modeled on Herbert A. Deane. Here is virtually a direct quote about Eisenhower, when he was President of CU, from the former Professor of Government, contributor to our CC curriculum readings and University Provost, page 83.

Again Meaney drew a very long puff from his cigarette and peered out momentarily from the window of his office across the campus to the dome of Low Library. He exhaled very slowly and seemed to use the time to review his comments before proceeding to his next point. “Ike had the right idea.” Parenthetically, “You know, we didn’t think much of him when he was president here. The books in his office, as I recall, were mostly army field manuals and technical manuals, but he was our shield against McCarthy.

“Columbia did not have people fleeing to Europe in the middle of the night. Good God! Isn’t that a tragic irony? Professors fleeing America for freedom in Europe.” He paused as he contemplated his own words. “Anyway, Ike low-keyed the activity in Vietnam with 150 to 200 military advisors—just enough to satisfy some of our critical allies and assure them that we would come to their aid in the Pacific region....”

Elliott Greher writes, “I continue to collect books on a variety of subjects, with emphasis on synagogue architecture and history, Jewish communities throughout America and the world, Hagadahs in various languages, and the work of book illustrators (primarily for English language books). I add about 10 books each month to a collection that now numbers 2000 volumes. But I also de-acquisition books - having given away about 700 books in 1996 and about 90 books per year since then. I just added 11 feet of bookcases to the 23 linear feet I already had (and my wife's 10 linear feet of bookcases). It is fun to search out books to be acquired.”

David Alpern writes, “Since my last update, the Carnegie Corporation of New York awarded a $25,000 "challenge grant" to the newly renamed FOR YOUR EARS ONLY program on radio stations and the Internet (formerly Newsweek On Air), but I need to match it to get it. Positive indications from the Nathan Cummings Foundation in New York, but won't know for sure until after their May board meeting as my current funding runs out.

Would appreciate any advice or contacts at other foundations or corporations interested in preserving truly "fair and balanced" presentation of important issues and developments in all fields for the increasingly strident and slanted world of commercial radio—and getting grateful on-air credit.. Also on the Pentagon's American Forces Radio Network and our weekly podcast.

All gifts and grants are tax-deductible under our new status as a production of 501(c)(3) Gatewave, Inc., a 24/7, volunteer radio-reading service for people with disabilities. You can reach me at for more information. And check out the show anytime at, or or

Lee Lowenfish writes that he is having a busy spring speaking on baseball esp. Branch Rickey at New York's Union League Club, the local NYC Bar Association chapter, the University of Wisconsin-Lacrosse campus. In early June he will be discussing his new project on baseball scouting at the annual Cooperstown Symposium of Baseball and American Culture. More details available at

Steve Stollman has put in a bid for a Citywide bike-share system in NYC. I’ve posted his proposal on our website, Good luck, Steve!

Bob Kraft remains in the news. I received word that Robert and Myra Kraft have given $20 million to Partners HealthCare, which will help launch a program to attract doctors and nurses to Massachusetts community health centers. The Boston Globe reported, “The gift will be used to pay off up to $50,000 of the medical school loans of physicians and nurse practitioners, as well as to finance fellowships in targeted specialties and for master’s degrees. In return, caregivers must work for two to three years in a health center or other community-based setting to care for needy patients. ‘We wanted to do something to support everyone getting the kind of health care my family gets,’ said Kraft, during an interview at Partners’ headquarters in the Prudential Tower last week. ‘What I worry about in this country are the people who are hurting the most.’ Over the next five years, Partners chief executive Dr. Gary Gottlieb estimates, the Kraft donation will support more than 100 physicians, nurse practitioners, and other providers caring for about 200,000 patients.”

I also note that Bob recently addressed the Boston LGBT business community, making it the first time a local team owner headlined a major event for a gay audience.

Bob Heller missed the February lunch, but he had a good excuse. He writes, “I will be in Mexico on the beach. In LA right now and seeing Gary and Gail Rachelefsky for dinner tonight. Retirement is pretty good so far.” OK, how many of us are now retired? Let me know how it is going. Also, for those of you who have decided to keep working, please write and tell me why (I figure that I might be able to afford retirement when I’m 90).

March 2011 Issue

Tom O’Connor, Walter Stein, and I attended a Bridge Class event with a group of the class of 2013 (our “Bridge Class”) at the Alumni Center last November. As I mentioned when these started last year, these events are a unique chance to meet the undergraduates, and find out more about them and their interests. If you are in the New York area, and would like to join me the next time Columbia arranges one of these, let me know.

I know that a lot of us are having more fun now than we ever imagined we could, but, the other evening I saw Bob Kraft honoring Tedy Bruschi during the halftime of his team’s game against the Jets game (which the Patriots won with ease), and I saw Bob smile, and realized, he wins, hands down, on the coolest job that any of us could imagine. Congratulations Bob. And . . . now it’s your time to tell me why your life is just as cool.

Steve Clineberg writes, “I retired as Regional General Counsel of Boston Properties (Washington, DC office) in December of 2006 and have literally not looked back. My wife Lin (a graduate of St. Luke’s Nursing School on 114th Street) and I have relocated to our “vacation home” in St. Michaels, MD, on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay. Since then, I have gotten involved with the local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit that builds home for working families in this area. In fact, I am so involved in this organization that they made me its President, meaning that I get to ‘herd the cats’ on the Board of Directors for a two-year term and helping to assure that we have enough funding and able volunteers to continue our mission. I am actually looking forward to this since our affiliate is still growing, building 5-6 homes per year and filling a vital need for housing in our area – similar to the work that Habitat does around the world. I find that this work taxes the skills, such as they are, that I developed over my working career and am having fun with it.

In our “spare” time, Lin and I like to travel. In fact, we have just returned from a 3-week safari trip to Southern Africa and are looking forward to our next trip – probably to Italy or maybe Egypt. We have also been spending a good deal of time with family, especially our three children (all girls) and seven grandchildren. The highlight of our summers has been our visits – with all of the children and grandchildren, as well as spouses – to Family Camp on a lake near Portland, ME. If that’s not enough, Lin volunteers with Master Gardeners and our local Chamber Music festival (held in these environs every June) as well as other volunteer activities.

It was great seeing everyone at our 45th in New York. We are certainly looking forward to seeing many more of you at the next one and catching up on what you have been doing for the last 50 years!”

Bennett M. Rackman now works at JFK Airport as the Jewish chaplain.

Patrick McDonnell from the class of 1966 writes, “During freshman orientation week for the class of 1966 someone, I think from the class of 1963, conducted a ‘Nighttime Walking Tour of New Midtown Architecture’. As you might guess from my memory of the title after 45 years, it was an important event for me – I have had a lifelong interest in new architecture ever since. I do not remember who conducted the tour, but I would certainly like to get in touch with him and thank him for his interest and tour. I think that maybe he said he was going into advertising. Any help you could give in finding out who this was, such as asking in your column in Columbia College Today, would be most appreciated.” Any of you know who this might have been? I can’t remember – let me know.

Michael Hassan writes from Cabo San Lucas, “Life couldn't get any better down here. The weather is terrific . . . wearing all short sleeve/pants during the day and climbing into long sleeves and pants at sundown or atadecer in Espanol. I've rented a beautiful, luxury apartment in Cabo for the next few years while I develop property one lot off the beach up the Pacific Coast about 30 miles from Cabo in a place called Cerritos Beach, internationally known for its great surfing. We expect the first spec house to be done mid next year and are quite excited as this is our first development project (I have a partner from the USA). I hope to be spending Xmas and New Year’s riding a 45' ketch through the Panama Canal. This is the same boat and friends that brought me from LA to Cabo last year. I guess it helps to have an extra set of hands during the crossing, even a muddled, not quite as strong, bony pair.

But what I wanted to say is how great life is right now. I hope my classmates can say the same. No more striving for tough goals, (if the beach house doesn't sell, I'll own a beach house.), no health issues to worry about; no more stress and strain unless voluntarily created; and to quote Dr. King, "Freedom at last". There is something inspirational in having a free spirit in a free body and mind. I feel like I'm going to live to be 100.”

Barry Jay Reiss writes, “I’d like to share an incredible vacation we took this past summer. My wife and I had talked off and on with another couple who are sailing buddies about wanting to do a canal boat vacation.  We had looked at the canal boats in France and the UK, then someone asked us “why are you going overseas when we have one of the world’s most famous canals right here in NY- the Erie Canal. When we checked it out online at the New York State website we got a ton of material on all sorts of options, including a beautiful large format canal “cruising” guide. We contacted one of the companies listed in the guide, Mid-Lakes Navigation and rented a 42’ canal boat. While were weren’t expecting much we were delighted to find a wonderful boat build to travel the canal with two double bed staterooms, each with each own head (bathroom), shower, fully equipped galley with gas stove and oven, refrigerator, dining area a large canopy covered cockpit and air conditioning! We picked up the boat at their marina in Macedon NY on the canal about 5 miles east of Rochester. After two hours of training on how to operate the boat (top speed 5mph) and how to enter and leave a lock we were off heading East to our first Lock and port of call Palmyra (we eventually travelled through about 20 locks) The scenery was spectacular and we eventually turned off the Erie on to the Seneca Cana which runs through the Montezuma Natural Wildlife Refuge where we saw hundreds of wild birds, herons, Eagles etc. winding up at the mouth of Seneca Lake at Seneca Lake State Park. All and all we did lot more than 15 miles eventually heading back West stopping at Pittsfield and Fairport and heading back home to Macedon. It was an extraordinary week and we highly recommend it.”

Rich Juro writes, “Going down the coast of West Africa (Ghana to Namibia) for 3 weeks on a small 100 passenger (several of whom are also Columbia alums) ship, catching up on magazines that I haven't read, and there's a big, nice, complimentary article on Bob Kraft in the November issue of Fortune (you can Google it online). You've probably heard about it, even written about it, but just thought I'd mention it on the slim chance you missed it.”

And so that brings us back to Bob Kraft . . . Write me about the wonderful things you are doing. I probably won’t get it into Fortune, but I can certainly see that it’s published here – were it really counts.

Lunch Archives

If you like to see our previous lunches, click on the dates below:

December 9, 2004 January 12, 2006 January 11, 2007 May 8, 2008 September12, 2009
January 13, 2005 February 9, 2006 February 8, 2007 June 12, 2008  
February 10, 2005 March 9, 2006 March 8, 2007 July 10, 2008  
March 10. 2005 April 20, 2006 April 12, 2007 September 11, 2008  
April 14, 2005 May 11, 2006 May 10, 2007 October 16, 2008  
May 12, 2005 June 8, 2006 June 14, 2007 November 13, 2008  
June 9, 2005 July 13, 2006 July 12, 2007 January 8, 2009  
July 14, 2005 September 14, 2006 September 20, 2007 February 12, 2009  
September 8, 2005 October 12, 2006 November 8, 2007 March 12, 2009  
October 14, 2005 November 9, 2006 February 14, 2008 April, 2009  
November 9, 2005 December 14, 2006 March 13, 2008 May, 2009  
December 12, 2005   April 10, 2008 June 2009  

For information and inquiries call Paul Neshamkin at 201-714-4881 or email at