Two thousand eight hundred and twenty-six alumni, parents, faculty, parents of alumni, staff, grandparents, and friends contributed $2,883,474 to Annual Giving, surpassing our $2.6 million budget by 11 percent and setting a new all-time Annual Giving dollar record!
Such outstanding results were made possible thanks to the efforts of hundreds of volunteers who, under the leadership of Chair Jonathan Nobil ’02, devoted countless hours to securing the support of friends and peers. Volunteer outreach was particularly important to sustaining our tradition of broad community participation. An impressive 43 percent of alumni and 97 percent of current families made gifts in 2018-19, results that once again rank us at the top of peer schools nationally.
Current families, who already do so much for the school, gave $1.36 million to Annual Giving—a 2.9 percent increase from the previous record-setting year and a new record for total parent contributions. More than one hundred active parent volunteers were critical players in rallying peer support. A special recognition to the Classes of 2027, 2026, 2025, and 2024 on attaining 100 percent participation!
We are incredibly grateful to every member of our all-star parent volunteer team. We salute our division chairs, Gabi Koeppel and Aaron Velli for the Upper School, and Richard and Sara Schaberg for the Lower School. Their leadership was instrumental in achieving these outstanding results. Kudos!
Alumni spanning nine decades, from the Class of 1936 to 2018, contributed a new alumni record $1.24 million to Annual Giving—sustaining a “best-in-class” 43-percent participation. Securing these superb results was the work of 200-plus volunteers. Whether calling classmates at phonathon events held in October or February, serving as a class agent or Reunion Committee member, alumni volunteers played an indispensable role.
Alumni celebrating a reunion were, once again, instrumental to our success. This year’s milestone group of classes collectively raised almost 30 percent more than they had in their last reunion while garnering 46-percent participation. The Class of 1969 led the way, setting a new 50th Reunion record with $141,751 dollars raised. Click here for the results in this year’s Race for the Cups. There were noteworthy accomplishments in every class, from the fifth to the seventieth, all of which were made possible because committed alumni leaders worked hard to increase both class participation and total class contributions.
A strong first year under Alumni Board President Carter DeLorme ’88 saw the continuing success of three signature events: a well-attended Homecoming (with a tented pre-game lunch for alumni on Grant Meadow), our Alumni Dinner (at which our Headmaster informed and entertained the throng) and Reunions 2019—the thirteen-class collective Reunion Weekend in May (with the Friday evening barbecue held jointly with NCS on Senior Circle) and the more intimate 50th Reunion in June, held in conjunction with Commencement.
New events and initiatives are gaining momentum. The Off-The-Close (OTC) Networking series—now in its fifth year—included our first OTC in San Francisco: STA Insider’s Guide to Silicon Valley: What You Don’t Know and Need to Know, featuring Governing Board member Phil Bradley ’64 (former president, ProClarity and Angel Investor), Fred Kittler ’66 (founder and managing director, Firelake Capital Management), Richard Chow ’79 (president, ThermaSource), Dr. Joon Yun ’86 (president and managing partner, Palo Alto Investors, LLC), current parent Colin Stretch (vice president and general counsel, Facebook), and our host at BlackRock, J.J. Millard ’87 (managing director, BlackRock). The panel was moderated by our very own Michael Hansen (Computer Science chair and math teacher) and a lively Q&A followed the conclusion of remarks led by our headmaster. A second OTC was held in D.C.: Journalism under President Trump, with current parent Ian Urbina ’89 (investigate reporter for the New York Times), Sydney Freedburg ’91 (deputy editor, BreakingDefense), and current parent Susan B. Glasser (New Yorker columnist and editor at Politico). The panel was hosted by current parent Peter Cook ’85 (chief communications officer for the American Bankers Association). Continued regional expansion of the OTC event series is planned for the years ahead.
A biennial tented presence at the away-game Landon football matchup (hosted by the Alumni Office and featuring light snacks, beverages, and spirit item giveaways) was well received; a hosted Homecoming post-game reception at Town Hall in nearby Burleith (our second time at this cost-effective venue) continues to draw in new faces; promotion to alumni of livestreamed varsity soccer, football, lacrosse, and baseball games generated a great deal of interest, as did social-media sharing of the crew team’s head races and regattas; and lastly, readership of our revamped eNewsletters has continued to expand with interactive links, trivia, quizzes and other ever-evolving features.
As for other established events: the 29th Annual Vernon W. Holleman Jr. ’54 Bulldog Golf Tourney was held on a spectacular October afternoon, with seventy-two avid golfers at the Members Club at Four Streams, in Poolesville (again generously provided by our current-parent Wohlstadter family). Our annual baseball outing to Nationals Park in June again featured a pre-game reception catered by Surfside’s David Scribner ’86—and live music by Steve Lanter ’86 and his band. The STA-NCS BOLD Thanksgiving Friday Event—with more than two hundred in attendance—is twenty-six years and counting (older than many of the attendees!).
Out-of-town events at which the headmaster graciously acted as cohost included an October reception in New York City hosted by current parent Jim New (in a deliberate effort to reach the folks unable to stay for an evening reception at one of the college clubs near Grand Central Station); a three-city tour of southern cities during exam week in January (Ben Guill ’69 hosted an evening reception at the Petroleum Club in downtown Houston); John Packman ’76 welcomed fellow Bulldogs to his home in Atlanta’s Buckhead neighborhood; and Zach Shipley ’70 repeated as luncheon host at Palm Beach’s Sailfish Club on the Intracoastal Waterway. The travel did not end there! A spring break West Coast tour in March was led by the headmaster with events in L.A. and the Bay Area: Kathy and Brent Taylor ’65 hosted a sunset taco bar at their Manhattan Beach home; Dr. Joon Yun ’86 held a lunch reception at the Menlo Circus Club, and the aforementioned OTC-SF panel was hosted by J.J. Millard ’87 at his BlackRock office. The trip was capped off under glorious skies in Napa at the Hugh-Newell-Jacobsen (P’75)-designed home of Jeff Atlas ’74, with a wine tasting provided by Enfield Winery’s John Lockwood ’97. Suffice to say it was a memorable trip for our headmaster, especially since he was able to carve away a few spare moments to visit his alma mater, Stanford Law School. Our travels will only continue to new cities as we embark upon another academic year.
The department enjoyed a successful and busy 2018-19 school year, led by Special Events Manager Kari Wade and Director of Development Operations Catherine Carman. Highlights include our Homecoming Weekend and Reunion Weekend barbecue in Senior Circle, numerous regional gatherings to introduce Headmaster Jason Robinson and his wife Olinda, including visits to New York City, the West Coast, and Florida; several iterations of our Off-the-Close networking receptions; a series of intimate dinners to introduce incoming Headmaster Jason Robinson. Annual events, such as our early-October Headmaster’s Associates Reception, the Parent Dinner in January, the Alumni Meeting and Dinner in March, and April’s Grandparents Day, all saw excellent attendance. Our department also ran a number of small-scale events designed to steward the philanthropy and service of our parents and alumni, as well as to celebrate our faculty.
DEVELOPMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS
This was the Development Office’s first full year with Blackbaud’s latest Cloud-based software, Raiser’s Edge NXT, which enabled more on-the-go access for front-line fundraisers to key data systems. St. Albans School also participated in the Blackbaud’s Early Adopter Program for online events and will soon add Apple Pay as a payment option for online giving.
During FY19, Development Information Systems (DIS) processed and acknowledged 5,713 gifts, pledges, and payments, totaling nearly $7.7 million. Preston Meche, manager of DIS in his first year of service to St. Albans, also received professional certification in the Raiser’s Edge, Development’s primary database software, ensuring industry best practice standards for data entry and extraction.
While the “departmental” reports above commend our wonderful—and indispensable—volunteers, we cannot thank them enough. St. Albans alumnus and Governing Board member Brendan Sullivan ’93 chaired the Development Committee, as efforts are underway for the school’s next strategic plan.
Thanks to Alumni Association President Carter DeLorme ’88, vice president Carter Mitchell ‘93, and secretary Jason Cross ’95—and to all Alumni Association Board members for their dedicated help and enthusiasm for alumni events in Washington and around the country.
The Headmaster’s Counselors, co-chaired by Bob Gabriel ’80 and Doug Selin ’81, convened meetings in October of 2019 and again in May. This group of leaders from across the country continues to provide invaluable advice on a number of school issues for Headmaster Robinson, and we continue to rely on them (working with the Alumni Board) to strengthen connections with alumni nationally and internationally.
As always, the St. Albans community was strengthened immeasurably by a dedicated Parents’ Association, led this year by Krissy Benner and the executive committee of Perry Fergus, Melanie New, Jackie Roberts, and Linda Willard. The Christmas House Tour continues to draw together the St. Albans community while providing invaluable gifts to the school. We were blessed by a great team of cochairs: Susan Harreld, Aimee Irwin, Cema Siegel, and Lee Koch. We also applaud Liz Moore and Ladan Shayesteh, who co-chaired the very successful Bulldog Bash. These wonderful people, plus our dedicated form chairs, the friends who staff the Faculty Appreciation Luncheon, the Athletic and Performing Arts Banquets, run the Student Exchange Shop, and organize Flower Mart book sales and organize Homecoming festivities are the lifeblood of our school community—and in reflecting on my time at the school, let me say how very grateful I am to have been to be a part!