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Reunion 2012

Reunion 2012

“Undeniably Different,” Yet …

It was promised to be “Undeniably Different,” and different it was . . . from people to programming.

History was made as the College’s first full-time traditional-age undergraduate coed class, the Class of 2007, celebrated its first five-year reunion. Special Reunion Luncheon congratulations were offered to two members of the class, Dan Vizak and Carli Matticks, on their marriage only a week earlier. They were joined by classmate spouses Mike Santacroce and Danielle Griesbach-Santacroce and Brian Dorety and Chiarina Turner Dorety for a round of applause.

Other “new since your last reunion” features included:

  • A day of golf at Talamore Country Club
  • Pampering at a local day spa
  • Hi! Tea Welcome-Back Reception
  • Six faculty-led education sessions
  • Friday night pub crawl
  • Milestone Classes (1962, 1987, 2007) Cocktail Reception hosted by the College president
  • Saturday night bistro dinner
  • Saturday “Riviera Night”
  • Air-conditioned venues
  • State-of-the-art Fitness Center
  • Refurbished Fournier Social Room, now McCaffery Lounge
  • Golden Griffins Induction and commemorative medallion
  • “Saturday Special” activities, including outdoor pool at SugarLoaf Hill, for adult guests

Even with the changes to Reunion Weekend programming and to the College over the last five years, 70th reunion celebrant Madeleine Bennis Degnan ’42 commented, “Chestnut Hill still retains a warm and welcoming small college feeling, making it a special place.”

Diane Gillies Momich ’62 agrees:
“CHC continues to nourish, inspire, and educate the whole person in mind, body, spirit."

Meaningful for Kathy Kane Mann ’62?
“I loved being in the company of the first coed graduating class.”

Always right to the point, Mary Merz Berko ’52:
“As much as Chestnut Hill has changed over the past 60 years, it still feels like coming home.”

Friday, June 1

The picture-perfect weekend, after Friday clouds and showers subsided, kicked off with arrivals checking in to red carpet treatment in the Piazza. These early celebrants moved right into the festive “Hi! Tea Welcome-Back Reception” co-hosted by the Alumni Association Board of Directors and the Office of Alumni Relations. Later in the afternoon, alums again enjoyed a selection of faculty-led concurrent educational/personal enrichment sessions, all new for the 2 and 7 classes. Two additional sessions followed the international buffet dinner for those unable to arrive for the earlier offerings. New this year, a Friday evening pub crawl of Chestnut Hill’s watering holes attracted a share of reunion celebrants, who were chauffeured by a CHC van driver. Others chose to remain in the newly refurbished Social Room, now known as McCaffery Lounge, to chat, catch up, and enjoy the ever-present refreshments.

What They Say About Friday:

Valet parking:

“Excellent … great … terrific … nice touch …”
Joan Coyne ’52, Deborah Sonntag Tredinnick ’92, Patricia Walsh King ’67, Linda Hirsch Glasgow ’62

Faculty-led education/enrichment sessions:

Thoroughly enjoyed by all; in fact, Joan Mathers Eaves ’52, who attended the “Hemingway on the Big Screen” session, asked for “more from the College professors!” Connie Murray Becker ’57, who attended sessions before and after dinner, “enjoyed the session on nominating presidential candidates and the autism program very much.” She hopes the “lectures will continue.”

Dinner and Following:

“The dinner Friday night was awesome,” says Maria Santoro Conway ’92. “Great food selections and it was fun eating in the dining room again and socializing with old friends.” After dinner, Maria enjoyed “the pub crawl with my friends” and appreciated the courtesies of “Bob, our kind van driver.”

Other Friday Night Activities:

For Keara Claus ’07, the alternative “Friday night hangout [in McCaffery Lounge] was terrific… catching up with classmates and unwind from the work week.”

Click here for Photo Gallery -- Friday


New This Year -- Friday Red Carpet Arrivals - Continuous Loop


New This Year - Comments from First Arrivals

5th Reunion

45th Reunion


50th Reunion (President, Golden Griffins Class of 1962)





Saturday, June 2

The third year of inviting spouses and significant others resulted in a number of adult guests for special Saturday activities — including an educational session on the Wissahickon Park led by Professor of History David Contosta, the 10K Run/5K Walk Wissahickon Trail Classic to benefit the Wissahickon Volunteers’ restoration of the natural lands of the Wissahickon Valley Park, and suggestions of multiple off-campus venues to visit and enjoy in the afternoon — while reunion celebrants proceeded through the traditional sequence of morning-through-Class Meeting events. Alums and guests also enjoyed the annual Then-and-Now Campus Tour led by Mary Helen Kashuba ‘55, SSJ, D.M.L., which concluded in the Main Chapel immediately before Mass.

The Annual Reunion Memorial Mass, capped by the singing of the “College Hymn to Our Lady,” Salve Mater Salvatoris, never fails to stir a collective emotion. The traditional Reunion Cocktail Reception followed in the Rotunda, East Parlor, and Redmond Room while reunion volunteers did a masterful job of alerting and queuing up alums for Class Pictures on the Bishop’s Steps.

The 66th Annual Reunion Luncheon highlighted the bookends of reunion registrants in recognizing the first five-year reunion of the Class of 2007, the College’s first fully coed traditional-age undergraduate class, and in celebrating the 70th reunion of the Class of 1942. Each of the four attending alumnae from this most senior class accepted hearty congratulations and the gift of a wrist corsage presented by Alumni Association board members George Roitzsch ’07, ’09 SGS and Mark Hammons ’08, ’10 SGS. Special greetings and welcomes were extended to Elizabeth McCafferty Hardingham ’72, who travelled from her home in Gloucestershire, England, to attend her 40th reunion, which was also her first reunion back on campus.

Alumni Association president Kathy O’Boyle ’84, ’97 SGS presented the 2012 Alumni Association awards to three alumnae: Delia Schiavi Melograna ’42 and Joanne Fink ’76, each receiving the Eleanore Dolan Egan ’28 Award for Outstanding Service to Chestnut Hill College, and Stephanie King, M.D. ’89, the Distinguished Achievement Award for her accomplishments in the field of gynecologic oncology.

Sister Carol Jean Vale shared her “Review of the Past … Preview of the Future” with the reunion celebrants, highlighting recent campus transformations and plans for additional facilities, student life programs, and other measures that will move CHC to a nationally-recognized “college of uncommon excellence.” The College president especially noted the striking Gulati Complex, named for donors Jack and Rosemary Murphy Gulati ’61, consisting of the “old gym”-turned-Fitness Center and the Fournier Hall Social Room refurbished as the McCaffery Lounge, named for donors Michael and Margaret Carney McCaffery ’77.

Class Meetings followed, after which reunion celebrants regrouped with their guests for tours of the Commonwealth Chateau on the SugarLoaf Hill campus, the Milestone Classes Reception hosted by the College president, opportunities to work off a hearty lunch in the new Fitness Center, and other pre-dinner activities. The French-themed bistro, tapping the roots of the Sisters of Saint Joseph, and cool breezes on Fournier Circle and in the Piazza tempted gourmands in early evening. The French theme continued in the “Riviera” of Logue Library, where gaming tables, a mini-café, music, caricature artists, and displays of alumnae and alumni art, publications, and other creations topped the evening’s festivities. Complimentary bérets and cigarette holders struck just the right Gallic touch.

What They Say About Saturday:

“Then-and-Now Campus Tour --- I learned so much!”
Eileen Menegus Debesis ’67

“I enjoyed everything, especially the pre-Luncheon cocktail reception.”
Mary Jane Briggs Morgan ’67

“Luncheon program was informative and still allowed for conversation at the tables.”
Mary Merz Berko ’52

“Sister Carol’s remarks were very informative” … “Great presentation by Sister Carol” … “Loved the update by Sister Carol” … “It’s amazing to see the growth and hear about the plans and vision for the future” … “Sister Carol’s presentation was interesting, informative, and exciting” … “enjoyed the President’s update on CHC” … “excellent” … “very inspiring.”
Nicole Irwin Blum ’97, George Roitzsch ’07, ’09 SGS, Marilea Swenson ’67, Maria Santoro Conway ’92, Siobhan McEnaney-Hayes ’82, Suzanne Dames Gibbs ’67, Anne Duffy Mirsch ’52, Deborah Sonntag Tredinnick ’92

“President’s remarks, Roll Call of Classes, awards were excellent.”
Pura Bigles Brennan ’52

“Saturday Special” activities for spouses “excellent, my husband attended.”
Ellen McCafferty Hardingham ’72

“I enjoyed the luncheon and wished I could have attended more activities.”
Kathleen Valvardi Lang ’82

“Saturday night dining in the courtyard was like dining in Italy!”
Ellen Kelley Sheehan ’62

“Saturday night activities were excellent --- the caricaturists and bérets were fun.”
Toni Whitmore ’67

Click here for Photo Gallery -- Saturday


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Sunday, June 3

Golden Griffins shine on the final day of Reunion Weekend. All attending reunion are welcome to join CHC’s most senior reunion and non-reunion alumnae for the annual Golden Griffins Mass, now celebrated in the air-conditioned East Parlor. Complimentary coffee and danish followed for those not continuing on to the Annual Golden Griffins Brunch in the West Dining Room.

At one of the highest-registered Golden Griffins Brunches in recent history, close to 95 alumnae and guests enjoyed the slide presentation of funny and touching photos from representative yearbooks while equally savoring their festive meal. They also appreciated the Q&A session with the College president, as Sister Carol responded to inquiries on subjects ranging from today’s top-choice majors, to facilities that attract prospective students, to courses taught, to plans for the future. The day’s events — and Reunion Weekend — concluded with the presentation of the commemorative Golden Griffins Medallion to each new Class of 1962 Golden Griffin in attendance at the brunch.

What They Say About Sunday:

“I felt rewarded to be in a class among such remarkable women.”

Diane Gillies Momich ’62

“Golden Griffins Brunch and programming were excellent.”

Jeanne Grant O’Neill ’47

“Golden Griffins Brunch --- loved the medallion … Sister Carol wowed the crowd …”

Sandy Glynn-Lippe ’62

Click here for Photo Gallery -- Sunday

What Mattered Most About Reunion ... What They Say Should Stay

“The beautiful memorial Mass in the Main Chapel … meeting current students and recent alums --- loved the enthusiasm …”

Diane Napoli O’Grady ’57
“Time with my classmates --- I feel more connected with more of the class than when I was a student.”

Carol Reedy Lobdell ’62
“Seeing so many old friends! Delighted that so many from ’52 came, even three in wheelchairs! Great dedication, great class, I’m very proud of all.”

Joan Gerard Larkin ’52
“The time spent with friends, learning about College updates.”

Tricia Montgomery-Timbers ’92
“Reunion Luncheon and academic sessions.”

George Roitzsch ’07, ’09 SGS
“Sunday Mass and Golden Griffins Brunch”

Gerry Menzler Kelsey ’52
Dedicating the plaque in the library to our former [deceased] classmate evoked a torrent of memories.”

Kathy Kane Mann ’62
“Reunion Luncheon”

Ina Negron-Zorilla ’77, Susan Kanehann Ahmad ’77, Nicole Irwin Blum ’97, Ellen Kelley Sheehan ’62, Mary Ellen Carroll Brown ’52, Rosy Fernandez ’77, many more
“The Class Meeting --- all of us together.”

Rosemarie Schmitt Clark ’57
“Sitting around after meals to chit chat with classmates.”

Pilar Pinili-Silva ’67
“Getting to know some of my classmates all over again!”

Irene Ampthor Tori ’77


A Reunion Veteran Speaks with a Young Alum Two 5th Year Alums Enjoy the Festivities Reunion Sunday



All in All ... The Bottom Line ... Keywords They Say Describe Reunion Weekend 2012

“After 70 years, it’s a brand new experience…”
Josephine Benson Manfredi ’42

“A time machine and a hug fest!”
Sandy Glynn-Lippe ’62

“Fun, friends, fabulous!”
Joan Gerard Larkin ’52

“We like the traditional CHC but welcome the new additions.”
Linda Hirsch Glasgow ’62

“Very memorable!”
Carol Reedy Lobdell ’62

“The masculine presence is undeniably different, but not in a bad way.”
Kathy Kane Mann ’62

“Homecoming to a place I hold dear.”
Midge Conlan O’Brien ’62

“Satisfying, worthwhile, amusing, interesting.”
Suzanne Dames Gibbs ’67

Patricia Walsh King ’67

“Fun, relaxing, heartwarming, informative, historical.”
Mary Jane Briggs Morgan ’67

“Exciting, memories, heartwarming …This was my first reunion in 45 years. I had a good experience and plan to come back for my 50th, God willing.”
Pilar Pinili-Silva ’67

“Relevant, interesting, and sentimental.”
Carolyn Donato ’72

“Emotional, memorable, moving, and beautifully organized.”
Elizabeth McCafferty Hardingham ’72

“Friends and memories last forever.”
Rosy Fernandez ’77

“Felt like I was 18 again!”
Ina Negron-Zorilla ’77

Siobhan McEnaney-Hayes ’82

“Fun, memorable”
Maria Santoro Conway ’92

“Wistful --- loved reliving my memories!”
Deborah Sonntag Tredinnick ’92

“Passion, love, joy”
Keara Claus ’07

“Great fun to see classmates I hadn’t seen since graduation … walking around campus and enjoying the beauty, remembering who we were and how lovely something’s endured despite change over the years.”
Chris Hemsley ’77

“Wonderful experience in every way.”
Elizabeth Croake ’52

“Amazing to have all these activities for so many people! Thank you!"
Ellen Kelley Sheehan ’62

“I think it’s important to try and include significant others and children to attend during reunion weekend. I would love for my daughter and son to see CHC. Maybe have an outdoor BBQ, moon bounce, and a clown, etc., using all of the open space.”
Nicole Irwin Blum ’97

The final word, as only Joy can express it: “If anyone complains, it’s their fault they didn’t have a good time!”
Joy Renzulli Wuenschel ’62


Saturday_1 Saturday_2 Saturday_3



Our Team

Thank you to our Reunion Weekend volunteers overseen by Outreach Committee co-chairs Maryanne L. Walsh ’98,’02 SGS and Mark Hammons ’08, ’10 SGS and captained by Kathleen Quigley Grimm ’88, and a team of six students, all managed by assistant alumni director Jackie Gutshall.

“The students were so pleasant and helpful – always available.”
Joan Mathers Eaves ’52

“The staff worked tirelessly on our behalf.”
Linda Hirsch Glasgow ’62

“Thanks for all your hard work.”
Joy Renzulli Wuenschel ’62

“We were spoiled!”
Sandy Glynn-Lippe ‘62


Alumni Volunteers

Bridget Rochford Atzinger ’88
Frances Boshell ’09
Mark Hammons '08, '10 SGS

Cissy Englebert-Passanza ’77
Jane Fearn-Zimmer ’88
Joanne Fink ’76

Kathleen Quigley Grimm '88
Karen Murphy Harris ’88
Ryan Ireland ’05
Margo Mongil-Kwoka ’80

Stephanie Rendine Morris '04

Kathy O’Boyle ’84, ’97 SGS
George Roitzsch ’07, ’09 SGS
Cecilia Haenn Turner ’88
Jo Marie Victor ’04 SCPS
Frances Vorsky ’05, ’07 SGS
Teri Meniketti Wiedeman-Rouse ’05 SGS

Maryanne Walsh ’98, ’02 SGS


Student Team

Christopher Allen ’13
Meghan Gerry ‘14
Jennifer Golding ’15
Desmond Lites ’14
Olivia Marcinka ’13
Katherine Tohanczyn ’12


reunion_7 reunion_8 reunion_9


For the Record --- Stats & Facts About Reunion Weekend 2012

Who attended:

  • School of Undergraduate Studies classes ending in 2 and 7
  • Eligible to attend: 1,165
  • Registered for at least one event: 266 (23%) vs. 283 (24%) in 2007
  • Registered for 66th Annual Reunion Luncheon: 260 vs. 247 in 2007


Highest registrations of non-Golden Griffins reunion classes:

Class of 1967 (45th)

Class of 1977 (30th)

Class of 1982 (20th)


Highest registrations of Golden Griffins reunion classes:

Class of 1962 (50th)

Class of 1957 (55th)

Class of 1952 (60th)

Most senior reunion class represented:

Class of 1942, celebrating 70th Reunion

Most senior class attending Golden Griffins Mass & Brunch:

Class of 1940

Registration method:

51% online; 49% mailed

Registered by the May 5 Early Bird Discount deadline: 39%

Completed the Reunion 2012 Evaluation form, mailed to all registrants four days after reunion: 33%
Of the 33% who responded:

  • 93% completed the four-page print evaluation
  • 7% completed the optional shorter, online evaluation



Reunion Weekend Promotional Methods

Print Promotionals

1. Personalized Save-the-Date Jumbo Postcard (early October)

2. Narrative & visual, “Alumni Link", Chestnut Hill magazine, fall 2011 edition (late January)

3. Personalized “What’s Planned for Your Undeniably Different Reunion?” Jumbo Postcard (January)

4. “Undeniably Different” 18-page Registration/Invitation Booklet (mid-March)

5. “Reunion Coming Attractions” Memo — to 5th, 25th, 50th Classes (February)


Online Promotionals

1. Undeniably Different” reunion web pages: on Griffins Online — featured online registration; “who’s coming?” listings; FAQs; Weekend Schedule, etc.
2. “ReunionNews” e-newsletters: July 14 (with survey asking for suggestions on desired activities, events, etc. and formation of reunion classes task force); January 27; March 30; April 20; May 15
3. Alumni Office e-mail prompts to reunion class officers between mailings and e-newsletters


Social Media

Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter


Class Officer Communications/Promotions

Varied by Class


Non-Reunion (non-2 & 7) Golden Griffins Mass & Brunch Promotion

1. April 4 “AlumNews” e-newsletter
2. Chestnut Hill magazine spring edition boxed notice
3. Personal phone invitation from Alumni Association Board members


What They Say About Reunion Promotional Methods

Of those who responded to the evaluaiton questions, 99% voted the print, online, and electronic promotionals to be “informative, visually appealing, and timely.” The online registration option, online registration incentives, and “ReunionNews” e-newsletters were especially noted.

“Nicely done and appreciated”
Carolyn Donato ’72

“[personalized postcards] very much appealing! I felt so important and welcome — could not wait!”
Delia Schiavi Melograna ’42

“Each was eye-catching and very informative.”
Mary Merz Berko ’52

“Enjoyed the photos from past reunions.”
Toni Whitmore ’67

“Well organized!”
Siobhan McEnaney-Hayes ’82

“I like that they came in a timely fashion.”
Keara Claus ’07

“Great job.”
Sandy Glynn-Lippe ’62

“The ‘Who’s Coming’ list online was particularly informative and helpful.”
Linda Hirsch Glasgow ’62



Reunion-Year Giving Results --- Unofficial Stats

Preliminary tallies show the following results for reunion classes in charitable gifts to the College during the 2012 reunion year. Final results will appear in the 2011-12 Donor Report produced in the fall.

All gifts made by any reunion-year alumna or alumnus for any purpose are counted in the class reunion totals for participation and dollars raised. This includes gifts to Chestnut Hill College for the Griffin Fund (annual fund for operations), SugarLoaf Hill, general endowment, scholarships, campus ministry, athletics, Logue Library, special class gift funds, or specific academic programs.

Top Classes: Participation
Class of 1952: 62% (60th)
Class of 1962: 54.5% (50th)
Class of 1957: 54% (55th)
Class of 1942: 48% (70th)
Class of 1967: 42% (45th)

Total Reunion Classes --- Participation: 29%

Top Classes: Dollars Raised 2012
Class of 1977: $261,705
Class of 1947: $ 63,175
Class of 1962: $ 33,760
Class of 1967: $ 29,635
Class of 1952: $ 26,765
Total Reunion Classes --- Dollars Raised: $444,556


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Questions? Comments? Email Patricia Canning, Director of Alumni Relations at or 215.248.7144.


Coming Up: For traditional-age undergraduate classes ending in 3 and 8

Reunion Weekend 2013: May 31-June 1-June 2

Read More