Trustees Convene for Chase and Tang’s Final Board Meetings

The Board of Trustees convened on campus this past weekend for their annual spring meetings – these last board meetings, however, marked the final meetings for Head of School Barbara Chase and Oscar Tang ’56, before she departs the academy and he steps down as President of the Board. Trustees Weekend also included events to celebrate the service of Barbara Chase and David Chase, Director of Stewardship, according to the press release. Every spring during Trustees Weekend, there is a farewell dinner in honor of retiring or departing faculty, administrators and trustees, according to Nancy Jeton, Special Assistant to the Head of School. Because this year’s dinner also included a tribute to the Chases, it was a combination of a trustee dinner, an Alumni Council dinner and a regional alumni event, according to Jeton. “It was the biggest dinner I’ve ever seen. There were over 500 people in attendance,” she said. At the end of the dinner, Barbara Chase was presented with 18 pink roses, delivered one at a time by alumni representing each of the 18 classes that graduated from Andover under Chase’s tenure, according to the press release. The dinner also bid farewell to Malinda Blustain, Director of the Robert S. Peabody Museum of Archaeology, Susan Urie Donahue ’73, Alumni Trustee and former President of the Alumni Council, Cindy Efinger, Dean of West Quad South, Mark Efinger, Instructor in Theatre, Jane Fried, Dean of Admission and Assistant Head for Enrollment, Research and Planning, Elliot Hacker, Director of Finance and Assistant Treasurer, George Ireland ’74, Alumni Trustee, Carroll Perry, Instructor in History and Social Science, Ronald Takvorian ’66, Alumni Trustee, The tribute to the Chases was presented by Tang and David Underwood ‘54, President Emeritus of the Board of Trustees, who returned for this Spring’s Trustees Weekend. Underwood, who was President of the Board when Chase was selected as the school’s fourteenth Head of School in 1994, worked with Chase until the end of his term in 2004, according to the press release. Underwood and Tang also sat on the “Perspectives in Leadership” panel with Barbara Chase, which was moderated by Vic Henningsen ’69, Instructor in History and Social Science, and open to faculty, staff, alumni and parents, according to Jeton. “It was a special event. [The panel] was something to honor Mrs. Chase. She was the main event because she served with two [Presidents of the Board], Mr. Underwood and Mr. Tang, so it was a chance for the three of them to reflect on how leadership has changed over time at the academy,” said Jeton. Over Trustees Weekend, Fried also presented the Board with unofficial statistics from this year’s admission season, including a record-high 84 percent matriculation rate, according to the press release. For her last trustees meeting, Fried brought the entire team of admission counselors to attend the meeting and personally thanked them for their efforts. Jeton said, “[Fried] offered her reflection on how Andover admissions has changed during her time here, and she particularly spoke about what a strong team, and it’s not just the admissions team, but the entire academy, that participates in making [the admission season] a successful venture. According to the press release, Shelly Guyer ’78, Charter Trustee and Chair of the Building Committee, provided the Board with an update on the construction of the new boathouse for the Andover crew program. Guyer said that the project’s demolition phase has been completed and work on the boathouse’s interior has commenced. The Board voted to name the boathouse in memory of William “Bill” Hayes Brown ’34, former Instructor in English and crew coach, according to the press release. Brown founded the Andover crew program in 1955, beginning with only three old boats he managed to collect from Princeton, Yale and Harvard Universities, according to a past article in The Phillipian. After gathering the boats, Brown and a faculty friend discovered an abandoned canoe club on the Merrimack River and thus launched Andover’s rowing program. Trustees also convened for a generative session on interscholastic athletics at Andover, which included presentations from Mike Kuta, Director of Athletics, Sean Logan, Director of College Counseling and Jane Fried, Dean of Admission, according to Jeton. During the session, the trustees, as well as members of the Athletic Council and Senior Administrative Council discussed the “changing landscape of interscholastic athletics,” different challenges and opportunities of the program and participation rates, according to Jeton. “We also talked about what’s happening at the college level, and how that impacts Andover kids seeking college admission and it also impacts in a trickle down effect kids applying to Andover, particularly because of the sport specialization trends.” “We wanted [the trustees] to understand these trends as they begin to think about the next Strategic Plan. The athletic program is part of the school’s education program and it affects facilities, teachers, coaches and the academic program, so we wanted to make sure that [the trustees] were up to speed,” she continued. According to the press release, the Alumni Council also announced the winners of the inaugural “Award of Distinction,” which will be officially awarded next fall to George H.W. Bush ’42, Wendy Ewald ’69, William Knowles ’35, Stacy Schiff ’78, and Peter Sellars ’75 “for distinction in their fields of endeavor.” Tang also announced to the Board that the gifts and pledges to The Campaign for Andover, “Building on the Surest Foundation,” currently total $277 million, according to the press release. Tang recognized Scott Mead ’73, Charter Trustee, for his recent gift to fund the position of Curator of Photography at the Addison Gallery of American Art. He also thanked Louis Elson ’80, Charter Trustee, for his gift to Paresky Commons. In honor of Elson’s mother, Suzanne Elson, the Den has been renamed “Susie’s.” The Board also approved the school budget for fiscal year 2013. As a Charter Trustee, Tang and his service to the school will be honored in the fall per tradition.