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Academic Nirvana

By Will Hopkins ’11

When George Scanlon first visited Egypt in 1948, he had no intention of becoming an archaeologist, much less spending the next 60 years of his life working there. Yet, for the past 35 years he has served as a professor of Islamic art and architecture at American University in Cairo (AUC) and is still going [...]

Do-Good Capitalism

By Susan Cousins Breen

As a boy growing up in Accra, Ghana, Tralance Addy ’69 walked to the nearby public faucet each morning with his siblings to obtain water for the family’s cooking and cleansing needs. Today, Addy lives in Trabuco Canyon, Calif., and, by phone, in a resonating baritone voice, he speaks passionately about his mission to bring [...]

A (Big) Apple a Day

By Mike Agresta

In his first year as an adviser to New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg on food policy, Jordan Brackett is already making headlines. The City’s health commissioner’s proposal that he helped craft to ban the purchase of sugar-sweetened drinks with city food stamps has drawn cheers from public health advocates, protests from soft-drink industry lobbyists, and [...]

From a Rabbit to a Rolls

By Audree Penner

Growing up in the beach town of Rehoboth, Del., water has always been a way for Theodore “Chip” Burton to express his passions.
His connection to water shows up in his career choices and avocation. In the mid-1970s, his entrepreneurial acumen led him to purchase a marina in New Smyrna, Fla.—and today he owns and operates [...]

The Perfect Fit

By Elizabeth Redden ’05

The story of how John Meriwether ’82 became a professional saddle fitter has roots in diplomatic exchange.
When Meriwether resigned from the Foreign Service after five years and assignments in Canada and Hungary—“My wife and I had a prenuptial agreement that it wouldn’t be a career,” he jokes—he had certain conditions for his next job. “I [...]

The Art of Natural Building

By Susan Cousins Breen

Building homes and park benches and other structures from clay soil, straw, and sand seems like child’s play until Massey Burke ’00, who has been immersed in teaching and practicing natural building techniques for seven years, explains her life’s work and shares photographs of beautiful, painstakingly crafted projects. Then, this accessible, practical solution to many [...]

A Life Filled With Life

By Carol Brévart-Demm

In 1982, Sara Andrews O’Connor ’54 was managing director of the Milwaukee Repertory. She knew little about Buddhism, but that changed during a theater exchange trip to Japan that year. Spending time as a tourist in the ancient Zen temple of Sojiji on the Noto Peninsula and observing the practice of Buddhism for the first [...]

Building Houses—and Lives

By Jeffrey Lott

In 1967, David Richter, age 10, returned to suburban Westchester County, N.Y., from Kenya, where he had lived for two years while his father served as deputy country director for the Peace Corps. In 2004, Richter’s son Kai, also 10, returned to suburban Seattle from Cambodia, where his parents had taken him to help build [...]

Community Organizer Thinks Globally

By Jeffrey Lott

While Theresa Williamson studied biological anthropology at Swarthmore, the Internet exploded into her world—and ours. When she was a freshman, people were still using Gopher to connect computer-to-computer over the fledgling World Wide Web. Netscape, released in 1994, revolutionized Web browsing. Users of the Web jumped from 16 million in 1995 to nearly 150 million [...]

Late-Blooming Luthier

By Susan Cousins Breen

Blending a lifelong love of all things artistic and musical with the time found in retirement, Herb Taylor ’62 has fashioned a late-blooming career as a luthier. Taylor was six years into retirement when he made his first stringed musical instrument—a mountain dulcimer for himself. A friend was so impressed he placed an order for [...]