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Scarsdale alumni panelists inspire students to follow their own passion

By VALERIE ABRAHAMS of the Scarsdale Inquirer, November 28, 2014

“There is no one path; no right or wrong college” to find success, Scarsdale High School alumnus Dan Rosensweig told juniors and seniors as the moderator for a panel discussion with distinguished SHS alumni in the Little Theater Friday, Nov. 21. “Evidence suggests wherever you go [to college], if you follow your passions the opportunity to go into any field is available to people who come out of this high school,” he said. “Focus attention on doing some of the right things and being willing to take risks and take chances.”

To illustrate his point, Rosensweig invited six alumni who have traveled along very different paths to share their stories. The panelists were: Suzanne Nossel, ’87; Mara Liasson, ’73; Andrew Ross Sorkin, ’95; Jon Oringer, ’92; George Kliavkof, ’85 and Tom Rogers, ’72.

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Marcia Gloster Ammeen (SHS ´60) and her new book ¨31 Days: A Memoir of Seduction¨

Screen_Shot_2014-10-03_at_7.41.38_PM.pngArtist and now writer Marcia Gloster Ammeen recently published novel ¨31 Days: A Memoir of Seduction¨ details the affair Marcia had almost 50 years ago while studying painting at Oskar Kokoschka’s School of Vision in Salzburg, Austria and how it marked the beginning of an intense relationship that would change her life. Forty-five years ago, Marcia put her canvases and brushes aside to begin what would become a long and successful career as an art director in NYC. For all those years, she never painted. In writing the book, she realized Bill Thomson had changed her life, and 48 years later, he changed it again.  Marcia said that telling a story that was a secret for so many years has had an amazing impact on her life. She feels 20 years younger and lighter, energized and excited about life. Most importantly her creativity has returned.

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Nicole Eisenman (SHS ´83) and her Midcareer Survey ¨Dear Nemesis, Nicole Eisenman 1993-2013¨

Screen_Shot_2014-10-03_at_7.12.16_PM.pngHolland Cotter writes in the Art & Design section of the New York Times on September 25th that artist Nicole Eisenman´s ¨Dear Nemisis, Nicole Eisenman 1993-2013¨ is ¨a spicy and tightly edited midcareer survey of one of the most interesting New York artists to come out of the 1990s.¨ Cotter goes on to set the scene of art and culture in the late 1980´s and early 1990´s, weaving in the narrative of Eisenman´s life and career - he also writes in great detail about several pieces in the collection:   ¨In a 2006 painting, “Mountain Man,” the face is slathered on, the nose a thick dollop of squeezed-from-the-tube red pigment. The features look oddly edible, as if they were meat and candy and already being nibbled away at. A 2011 picture called “The Stranger” is different in every way. The face is painted a solid, textureless black, the features defined by patterns of fine drawn or incised white lines. The image is as crisp as a Luba mask or a Japanese woodcut.¨

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Henry Fountain (SHS ´72) and his NYT article ¨Obama Adviser on Front Lines of Climate Change¨

Screen_Shot_2014-10-02_at_7.06.05_PM.pngHenry Fountain, a science writer for the New York Times, recently wrote an article on the White House´s science adviser, John Holdren, and his influence on Obama´s environmental policies.  Mr. Holdren, who has had a very prominent career in academia and policy-making, has been very instrumental in shaping many of the administration’s policies, ¨including its biggest on climate change — the plan to cut power plant emissions of carbon dioxide, the main contributor to global warming.¨

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Jon Oringer (SHS ´92) and The Myth of Venture Capital

Screen_Shot_2014-10-02_at_6.37.15_PM.pngScreen_Shot_2014-10-02_at_6.37.15_PM.pngScreen_Shot_2014-10-02_at_6.42.07_PM.pngJon Oringer, the Founder and CEO of Shutterstock, recently wrote an article for entitled ¨The Myth of Venture Capital¨ in which he details some of the lessons he has learned about raising money in the tech start-up space.  A great excerpt from the article: ¨Many entrepreneurs think that cash is the ultimate solution to all of their problems, the one thing standing between them and their dreams. This is a dangerous mindset for several reasons. For one thing, it’s not necessarily true. Prominent and successful VCs like Fred Wilson will tell you that data actually shows that the amount of money startups raise in their seed and Series A rounds is inversely correlated with success. He writes that “less money raised leads to more success.”

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Elizabeth F. Fideler (SHS ´60) and her op-ed piece on Working Seniors in the National Journal

Screen_Shot_2014-05-16_at_7.40.51_PM.pngElizabeth F. Fideler, a research fellow at the Sloan Center on Aging and Work at Boston College, has written a captivating op-ed piece in the National Journal entitled ¨Why Seniors Are on the Job and Staying There.¨  In this piece, published this past February, Elizabeth explores why the trend of labor-force participation rates for men and women 55 and older are on the rise.  Elizabeth asks why the participation rate of older workers is increasing relative to the other age groups, especially while at the same time baby boomers are reaching conventional retirement age and, according to the BLS, are exiting the workforce in large numbers.

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Michael Allen Fox (SHS ´58) Publishes Book on Peace

Screen_Shot_2014-05-16_at_7.54.06_PM.pngMichael Allen Fox (SHS class of ’58) recently published ¨Understanding Peace: A Comprehensive Introduction¨ (New York: Routledge, 2014). This book, his seventh, fills the need for an original, contemporary examination of peace that is challenging, informative, and empowering, and that reflectively integrates material from many fields of knowledge.

Fully documented and written in an accessible style, Understanding Peace moves beyond fixation on war to highlight the human capacity for nonviolent cooperation in everyday life and in conflict situations. After numerous ideas about war and explaining its heavy costs to humans, animals, and the environment, the discussion then turns to the evidence of the existence of peaceful societies. Further topics include the role of nonviolence in history, the nature of violence and aggression, and the theory and practice of nonviolence. 

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Scarsdale Sunday Speaker Series: Lindsay Gottlieb (SHS ´95) on May 18th

Screen_Shot_2014-05-16_at_7.41.54_PM.pngLindsay Gottlieb, a Scarsdale native, is the award-winning Head Coach of the University of California’s women’s basketball team, the Golden Bears. She will be giving a talk as part of the Scarsdale Sunday Speaker Series entitled ¨A Coaching Life¨ this Sunday, May 18th at 3pm at the Scarsdale Women´s Club: 37 Drake Road, Scarsdale, New York.

After her stellar career as an athlete/scholar at Scarsdale High School, Lindsay received her B.A. degree in political science from Brown University in 1999 and her Masters of Philosophy, Education degree from Syracuse University in 2001. In 2013, during her second year as Head Coach of the Golden Bears, Lindsay brought her team to the NCAA Final Four after leading her team to a 17-1 conference record. Lindsay was a finalist for the Naismith National Coach of the Year Award, and was named Pac-12 Coach of the Year. In 2014, her team made it to the Second Round of the NCAA tournament.

Gottlieb is a recipient of the 2013 Distinguished Scarsdale High School Alumni award.

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Bruce Lansky (SHS ´58) Latest Publications Bring Innovation to Early-Stage Reading

bruce.jpgSeasoned author Bruce Lansky (SHS ’58), will be publishing the first in a series of three Picture Reading books, which are books that provide a “short-cut to reading” for preschoolers who haven’t learned how to read yet.  How does it work?  The stories are told completely in pictures—without any words. Thus, 3-year-olds can read and understand the pictures, follow and enjoy the story, and tell the story.  Early Birdy Gets the Worm, the first book in the series, will be published on April 1st.  May 6th is the publication date for Giggle Poetry Reading Lessons, which is the only (hence the funniest) remedial reading book ever published.

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Ian Shapiro (SHS ´76) and his new publication: Green Building Illustrated

Screen_Shot_2014-03-08_at_7.30.29_AM.pngIan Shapiro´s book, Green Building Illustrated, recently published on February 18th, introduces us to the innovative field of green building design and construction, and also includes a variety of new approaches to green building design.  Green Building Illustrated was written by Ian M. Shapiro and was illustrated by the legendary architect Francis D.K. Ching.  

Shapiro and Ching offer a graphical presentation to the theory, practices, and complexities of sustainable design using an approach that proceeds methodically. From the outside to the inside of a building, they cover all aspects of sustainability, providing a framework and detailed strategies to design buildings that are substantively green. The book begins with an explanation of why we need to build green, the theories behind it and current rating systems before moving on to a comprehensive discussion of vital topics. These topics include site selection, passive design using building shape, water conservation, ventilation and air quality, heating and cooling, minimum-impact materials, and much more.

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