2017 Alumni Award Recipients

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Founders' Award: Henry Zachs '52

The Founders’ Award was created by the merger of the Whitaker-Bement Award and the Samuel and Emily Williston Award, and honors the founders and principles of The Northampton School for Girls and Williston Academy. It is awarded to an alumnus or alumna whose loyalty, devotion, and service to The Williston Northampton School has been outstanding.

It is my great honor to present this award to Henry Zachs, class of 1952. Henry’s encyclopedic knowledge of his class, his deep connection to his classmates, tireless service to the School, and generous philanthropic commitment demonstrates his love for his school and those who help carry forward its mission. Henry has been a class agent, a reunion volunteer, and a caller for the Williston Northampton Fund. He is a former trustee, a member of the silver cup society, has endowed the Zachs’ Faculty Chairs, has been honored for his investment in the campus with the Zachs Admission Center, and is a longstanding consecutive donor to the Williston Northampton Fund. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Award in 2002 in honor of his 50th Reunion. It is my honor to present the Founders Award to Henry Zachs ’52, in recognition of his enduring loyalty and service to Williston Northampton.

Founders Award presented by Head of School Robert W. Hill III to Henry Zachs ‘52. Award accepted by Henry Zachs.

Daniel and Jane Carpenter Award: David Teece ‘72

The Daniel and Jane Carpenter Award was established in 2006 by Daniel M. Cain '64 in honor of the late Daniel and Jane Carpenter and their commitment to, and support of, The Williston Northampton School, its students, parents and alumni. This award is given to an alumna or alumnus who through "effort and energy" as well as financial contribution, has had a substantial impact on the school.

It is my great honor to present this award to David Teece, class of 1972. David’s support of the school has come in many shapes -- in past years he has been a member of the Reunion gift committee, and an Annual Fund volunteer. In 1995, David became a Williston Northampton parent as well, when his daughter Erica, class of 1999, enrolled. Alex, class of 2004 and Samantha, class of 2007, soon followed and David’s commitment grew stronger as a member of the Parent Executive Committee as well as a volunteer with the Admission office. David has been a leading contributor to the Annual Fund for 41 consecutive years and his generous gifts to the school’s Physical Plant have helped make our community a comfortable place to call home.

David could not be here with us tonight, so accepting the award on his behalf is his daughter Samantha, class of 2007, who is here celebrating her 10th reunion.

Daniel and Jane Carpenter Award presented by Bob Hill to David Teece. Award accepted by daughter Samantha Teece ’07.

Williston Northampton Award: Richard H. Brown '72

Created in 2015 to honor the school’s 175th Anniversary, this award is presented to an alumnus/a who has made significant achievements and contributions to his/her profession and/or community, shown a commitment to professional growth, or is recognized for leadership in his/her field. The contributions do not need to be publicly renowned but should represent important creative effort or accomplishment with professional, societal or educational value.

Richard Brown came to Williston Northampton for the final two trimesters of his senior year in 1972 as part of an English-Speaking Union exchange program. Although here for a short time, those two terms left a lasting mark on Richard and many of his classmates with whom he has remained close to after all these years. In fact, Richard has returned to celebrate every Reunion, but one, for the last 45 years. As Richard himself has said, his time at Williston was, "…one of the most formative periods of his life and what he gained from the experience (and associated travel across the U.S.) has been immeasurable."

After attending the University of Bristol, Richard’s career as a chartered civil engineer kept him in the UK until 1997 when the opportunity came to use his expertise to aid in post-conflict recovery. His work has brought him to Kosovo, East Timor, Iraq, and Afghanistan, among other countries, where he has led projects to rebuild and reopen railway networks, and repair and restore power and water infrastructure to communities. He was awarded the Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service for his work in Bosnia-Herzegovina and again for his work in Afghanistan. In 2005, he received the United States’ Bronze Star Medal for his work in Iraq.

Richard retired from British Army Reserves after 40 years and is currently working on a major railway construction project in Tanzania.

It is my great honor to present The Williston Northampton Award to Richard Brown, class of 1972.

The Williston Northampton Award presented by Bob Hill to Richard H. Brown ‘72. Award accepted by Richard Brown.

Alumni Trailblazer Award: Jennifer duBois '02

Created in 2015 for the school’s 175th Anniversary, this award is presented to an alumnus or alumna of the school under the age of 40 who has demonstrated significant professional achievement, contributions to his/her profession and/or community and continued promise of success in the future.

It is my great honor to present The Alumni Trailblazer Award to Jennifer duBois, class of 2002.

Jennifer’s Williston Northampton career started as a 7th grader and I’d like to think that throughout her six years at the school she honed the skills that would lead her to become the successful novelist she is today. She was awarded the Myrtle E. Hazeldine Prize for her work in English and for her writing in the Willistonian; and also was awarded the H. Thomas Wood Memorial Prize for showing the most promise in the field of journalism.

After graduating from Tufts University with a degree in political science and philosophy, she taught seventh grade social studies for one year before deciding to return to writing. She went on to earn an M.F.A. in fiction from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and completed a Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University. And the accolades would keep coming. Jennifer was the recipient of a 2013 Whiting Writer’s Award and a 2012 National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 award. Her debut novel, A Partial History of Lost Causes, was the winner of the California Book Award for First Fiction and the Northern California Book Award for Fiction, and was a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Prize for Debut Fiction. Her second novel, Cartwheel, was the winner of the Housatonic Book Award for fiction and was a finalist for a New York Public Library Young Lions Award. Her writing has appeared in such publications as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Playboy, The Missouri Review, Salon, The Kenyon Review, and Cosmopolitan. Today, Jennifer teaches fiction writing in the MFA program at Texas State University and I suspect that she may be busy working on her next great novel! Jennifer could not be with us today because she is attending the commencement ceremonies at Texas State. At Jennifer’s request, accepting her award is Peter Gunn.

Alumni Trailblazer Award presented by Bob Hill to Jennifer duBois '02. Award accepted by Peter Gunn.

The Williston Northampton School
19 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA 01027 | Phone: (413) 529-3000 | Fax: (413) 527-9494

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Founded in 1841, Williston is a student-centered, coeducational institution comprising a Middle School of day students and an Upper School of boarding and day students from 25 states and 27 countries.
Williston is a good fit for motivated students who want to be challenged by a variety of academic, athletic, and extracurricular opportunities. We look forward to hearing from you!
Williston classes are discussion based and collaborative, and we have developed outstanding programs that inspire students to excel. Our faculty members provide a model of critical thinking and enthusiastic engagement.

Williston offers the opportunity to pursue your passions and explore your independence in a community of adults there to guide you. Live and learn on a campus where leadership skills and lifelong friendships take root.

Williston offers an academic arts program complemented by parallel extracurricular arts activities—all taught by faculty members who are practicing musicians, actors, and visual artists.
Williston fields 67 interscholastic teams at the varsity, junior varsity, and beginner levels in 35 sports to give students a full range of opportunities to play. We also offer recreational options and fitness training.
Whether graduates of Williston Academy, Northampton School for Girls, or the Williston Northampton School, our alumni are an engaged and supportive part of the school’s family. No matter where they are in the world, our alumni believe in doing good well.
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