Johns Hopkins Magazine -- February 2000
Johns Hopkins 
     Magazine Home





F E B R U A R Y    2 0 0 0

Alumni News
Editor: Billie Walker

Chapter endows scholarship
Houston entrepreneur still rooting for Hopkins, Students
Alumni honored
Host Families help make new students feel at home
Alumni Council members gather for leadership weekend
1999-2000 Johns Hopkins Alumni Council
SAIS young alums seize unique matching opportunity
Travel program explores life around the world
Get together at reunions in 2000

Chapter Endows Scholarship

The Pittsburgh Alumni Chapter has endowed a nursing scholarship in honor of its long-time and indefatigable secretary, Loretta Hicks, Nurs '37, and in memory of her husband, Francis Hicks, who died in 1999. Pictured are chapter president Stephen R. Strelec, A&S '73, with Mrs. Hicks (center) and Sue Donaldson, dean of the School of Nursing.

Ralph O'Connor
Ralph S. O'Connor, A&S '51
Houston Entrepreneur Still Rooting for Hopkins, Students

Ralph O'Connor--today a successful Houston entrepreneur, civic leader, and philanthropist--says he got into Hopkins because of his tie clip.

Not likely. But Johns Hopkins knows a winner when it sees one.

The year was 1946 and young Ralph had just finished service with the Army Air Force.

"I was wearing my championship lacrosse tie clip from Manhasset High School on Long Island. I got accepted, but after seeing my classmates at lacrosse I decided to get out and let the big guys play," he laughs. Instead he played football and basketball as a freshman and sophomore.

The young man had been a triple threat at Manhasset and at the New Hampton School in New Hampshire, from which he graduated. He had transferred to New Hampton to finish his junior and senior years in one "round-the-clock" year before he turned 18, thus enabling him to enter the armed service of his choice.

One offshoot of young Ralph's football career at Hopkins was meeting swimming sensation Esther Williams, whom the team went to see at a Baltimore theater. Wearing his varsity sweater, he was chosen for a publicity shot with her, and she invited him to dinner with her entourage. He, in turn, asked her to a fraternity party, and she accepted! "Fifty years later I still get ribbed about that," he chuckles.

Mr. O'Connor's devotion to collegiate athletics continues today. A Houston resident for over 50 years, he has become such a loyal booster of the Rice University teams that he was inducted in 1998 into the Rice Athletics Hall of Fame as an honorary letterman.

"Athletic competition and similar physical endeavors make better students and better people," he avers, which is a big reason why he is committing $3 million to the Johns Hopkins Initiative, $2,775,000 of which will support construction of Homewood's recreation center. The remaining $225,000 will supplement the Ralph S. O'Connor Scholarship Fund, which he established in 1993 to assist undergraduates at the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences.

"Not everyone can play varsity sports, and this facility will provide superb space for intramural and informal competitions and physical fitness activities for both students and faculty," Mr. O'Connor said of the recreation center, expected to open in fall 2001. "Besides, to keep competitive, a school needs to have what the students want." The center will contain a field house with courts for basketball, volleyball, racquetball, and squash; an indoor track; a climbing wall; a fitness center; and multipurpose spaces.

After graduating from Hopkins in 1951 with a biology degree, Ralph O'Connor and some friends headed for Texas, having heard glowing reports of the oil business. Most went as roustabouts, or semiskilled laborers.

Mr. O'Connor was soon plunged into the heady world of oil and gas production, including wildcatting--drilling for oil on shrewd speculation. He was in turn roustabout, roughneck, draftsman, scout, and landman with Highland Oil Company and Herman Brown and George R. Brown Oil and Gas.

His instincts were so good and his results so impressive that by 1964 he was president of Highland Oil. He continued as president when the company became Highland Resources, Inc., in 1968, and became chairman of the board, president, and CEO of HRI Resources, Inc., when Highland was reorganized in 1984.

In 1975, from more than 900 applicants, Mr. O'Connor was awarded one of six distributorships offered in the Houston area by the Adolf Coors Company. "I felt a great sense of personal pride," he recalls, "on finding that the other distributors selected included such fine people as former astronaut Alan Shepard, major league baseball figures Bob and Ken Aspromonte, and a friend, John Barksdale [A&S '66], whom I had influenced to apply to Johns Hopkins."

In 1987 he formed the Ralph S. O'Connor & Associates investment firm, of which he is chairman and CEO.

Mr. O'Connor credits Hopkins with helping him to get ahead. "My JHU degree earned me immediate respect and opened doors," he says. "And how to get people to think my way came, I'm sure, out of many things I learned at Hopkins."

His business, civic, educational, and philanthropic activities are widespread. During 1969-75 he served on the University's Board of Trustees and in 1981 received the University President's Medal for his exemplary service. Earlier he helped the undergraduate admissions office to recruit some of the first students from Texas to apply to Hopkins.

Chairman and president of the Marian and Speros Martel Foundation of Houston, Mr. O'Connor also has served as director of the American Petroleum Institute, as chairman of the board of Oldfields School in Maryland, and as a trustee of Rice University.

Mr. O'Connor is chairman of both Skadium Enterprises and Total World Travel in Houston. He was among the four original partners who acquired the NBA's San Diego Rockets and brought them to Texas.

Alumni Honored

During Hopkins Today, the Johns Hopkins convocation held in New York City on November 13, two graduates received top Alumni Association awards. University trustee emeritus Morris Tanenbaum, A&S '49, left, was honored with the Heritage Award, recognizing exceptional service to Johns Hopkins. Richard W. Sonnenfeldt, Engr '49, one of the developers of color television, received the Detlev W. Bronk Award of the New York Metropolitan Alumni Chapter, which honors outstanding professional achievement.

Host Families Help Make New Students Feel at Home

Clockwise from top left: Josh Reiter, A&S '83, SPSBE '94, left, and Jim Schaefer, SPSBE '92, chairman of the Host Family Committee; medical student Chrishonda Curry, left, with Evelynne Vismale, SPSBE '76; medical student Devrim Pesen flanked by her hosts, Asli Togan, A&S '99 (M.A.), and Korkud Egrican, Engr '95 and '98 (M.A.); Erica Eisenhart, a freshman at the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, left, with Ruth Lawson Walsh, SPSBE '79; George Meredith, A&S '62, left, with Ryan Leggio, Krieger School freshman.

Alumni Council members gather for leadership weekend

More than 100 Alumni Council members and their guests came to Baltimore in October for Leadership Weekend. They took part in committee meetings and informational sessions, as well as social functions. These photos were taken at PSINet Stadium, where a film shoot was in progress on the field as Council members enjoyed an informal dinner at the new Ravens football facility.

From left: Joe Strohecker, Ted and Emily Graser, Bob Isaacs, Dorothy and Charles Einolf, Carol and Bill Jarrett, and Geoff Berlin, all from Atlanta

Joe Clarke, Maureen and James Harris, Jaconda Wagner

Eugene and Marlene Joyce, Michael and Maribth Knaub, Andy Solberg

Jim Archibald, Zachary Pack, Rick Carr

Robert and Betty Buxbaum

David Yaffe, Jim Nelson

Greg and Helen Bagley

Brendan O'Brien, Evelyn Jerome, Greg Fortsch, Atul Pathiyal

Irene Sandvold, Joe Strobecker, Dick and Sue Hu, Herb Dorsey

Gail Williams Glasser, Dale Saunders, Jay Lenrow, Karen Squarrell

Warren Find, Lew Miller

1999-2000 Johns Hopkins Alumni Council

James K. Archibald
A&S '71

1st Vice President
Iredell W. Iglehart III
Med '83

Vice President
Roderich M. Carr
Engr '78

Vice President
Joseph R. Reynolds, Jr.
Engr '69

Patricia S. Springer
Peab '59

J. Joseph Clarke
SPSBE '78, '91

Executive Committee

Llewellys F. Barker II
Med '59, SPH '91

Rebecca M. Barshick
Nurs '94

Barbara A. Belt
Peab '91

Ridgely C. Bennett
SPH '84

John A. Blohm
Engr '67

Robert F. Bradley
Engr '73. SPSBE '96

Robert S. Buxbaum
Engr '51, '53

Rashid A. Chotani
SPH '96

Charles I. Clarvit
A&S '78

Loren R. Douglass
Engr '86, SAIS '95

Robert E. Greene

Helen L. Holton

Ilaya R. Hopkins
SAIS '93

AndrŽa F. Katz
Med '82

Albert G. Laverty
Engr '53

Jay L. Lenrow
A&S '73

Simeon Margolis
A&S '53, Med '57, '64

Paul A. Matlin
Peab '70,'72,
SPSBE '81, Engr '84

Erik P. Molander
A&S '78, SAIS '78

Joshua J. Reiter
A&S '83, SPSBE '94

Joseph P. Reynolds, Jr.
Engr '69

Edie Sagenkahn
Nurs '95

Andrew L. Solberg
SPH '77, '89

Lucy R. Sutphen
Med '85

David P. Yaffe
A&S '74

Council Members

Linda S. Adamson

Jacqueline M. Akinpelu
Engr '80

Andrew W. Albstein
A&S '78

Anthony A. Anderson
A&S '76

Frances W. Baker
A&S '63, Med '66

Jeffery C. Baldwin
Nurs '94

George L. Becker, Jr.
A&S '50

Karen V. Bennett
Nurs '64

William R. Bowles
Engr '60

Morgan M. Buchner, Jr.
Engr '61, '65

Edward D. Burger
Engr '51, '55

Erica Gum Burson
CTY '84, A&S '91

Janice K. Bush
A&S '76

Taylor L. Clark
Peab '84

S. Tracy Coster
Engr '84

Sharon E. Crane
A&S '84, Med '90

Anton T. Dahbura
Engr '81, '82, '84

Gene A. Detroyer
A&S '69

Ralph L. Disney, Jr.
Engr '52, '55, '64

Lewis H. Diuguid
SAIS '63

George E. Dredden III
A&S '77

Steven W. Eaddy
A&S '78

Lisa C. Egbuonu-Davis
Med '83

Charles W. Einolf
Engr '56

Mark Eisenberg
A&S '56

Abbe Fessenden
SAIS '64

Warren Fink
A&S '78

George E. Fischmann
A&S '77, Med '80

Stanley E. Fisher
A&S '66, Med '69

Gregory W. Fortsch
A&S '91

Carol Y. Franklin

Arnold D. Gale
Med '76

Melvin D. Gerald
SPH '74

Robert S. Ginsburg
SAIS '60

Kenneth A. Giuffre
Med '87

Terry Ann Glauser
SPH '95

Douglas T. Gneiser
A&S '83

Ann S. Goldman
SAIS '84

Theodore N. Graser III
A&S '57

William S. Greenberg
A&S '64

Harriet K. Greif
SPSBE '66,
A&S '69, '77

Theodore C. Hanf
A&S '71

Eugene C. Harvey
Engr '60

Richard C. Hu
Engr '58

George J. Hudgins, Jr.
Engr '58, SPSBE '71

Elmer E. Huerta
SPH '92

Peter C. Innis
Med '84

Robert B. Isaacs
A&S '62

William H. Jarrett II
Med '58

Charles T. Johnson-Bey
Engr '89

Eugene E. Joyce
A&S '55, Med '59

Steven M. Kaye
A&S '81

Susan Kern

Michael J. Knaub
Peab '73

Donald A. Kurz
A&S '77

Jon M. Laria
A&S '85

Joel D. Lesnick
A&S '53

Diana C. Liu
A&S '83

Thomas B. Lonegro
Engr '65

Michael F. Lubin
A&S '69, Med '73

Donna M. Mahrenholz
Nurs '62

Howard C. Mandel
A&S '77

Marilyn S. Mandler
Nurs '56

Benetta M. Mansfield
A&S '74

Scott E. Marks
Engr '78

Leslie S. Matthews
A&S '73

Christina Mattin
A&S '75

Wayne C. Matus
A&S '72

M. Terry McEnany
Med '64

Mary E. McGeady
Nurs '55

Michelle Danoff Merlin
A&S '76, SAIS '78

James A. Miller
A&S '64

Lewis G. Miller
Engr '57, '61

Kenneth F. Mills, Jr.
A&S '79

Linda C. Mistler

Joseph D. Neff
CTY '85, Engr '91

James H. Nelson
A&S '75

D. Scott Nickerson
Med '71

John E. Osborn
SAIS '92

Ira D. Papel
A&S '77

Alan S. Parter
A&S '66

Gavril W. Pasternak
A&S '69, Med '73, '75

Atul Pathiyal
A&S '94

Edward C. Perko
Engr '54, '69

Claudia F. Pleasants

W. Ross Pumfrey
SAIS '87

Kenneth E. Quickel, Jr.
Med '64

Lawrence J. Quinn
A&S '85

Patricia T. Ralston
SPSBE '93, '98

Lynne C. Robertson
A&S '77

William T. Salisbury
SAIS '67, '72

Irene O. A. Sandvold
SPH '75, '82

Elaine N. Schelle
Nurs '59

Christine R. Schmitz
Peab '75

Kozo Shimano
Engr '84

Joseph M. Sigelman
CTY '87

Robb E. Smith
Bologna '64, SAIS '64

Bradley R. Stark
A&S '78

K. Scott Starks
A&S '74

Jeanne A. Stinchcomb

Joseph F. Strohecker
Engr '53

Angela R. Taylor
Peab '93, '94

Mary Ellen Thomsen

Edward S. Tuvin

Margaret E. G. Vanderhye
SAIS '72

Sanford L. Victor
A&S '77

Caroline H. Waxler
CTY '85

Patti M. Wilcox-Honnald
Nurs '67

Cheryl G. Hudgins

Mary Kaye Willian
SPH '79, '82

Barbara T. Yinger
Nurs '58

Ted Zaleski, Jr.
SPSBE '70, A&S '86

James D. Zevely
A&S '67

Student Members

John Cowan

David Campbell

Per Mario Floden

Bridget Innerarity

Kate Wetherbee

April Oster

Sonia Singh

Zachary Pack

Donor Paul Smyke, SAIS '94, right, with challenger Michael Bloomberg
Bloomberg Challenge for Student Aid
SAIS Young Alums Seize Unique Matching Opportunity

When Michael Bloomberg established a $1 million challenge fund at the Nitze School of Advanced International Studies to encourage young SAIS alumni to contribute money for student financial aid, no one suspected that members of a single class would respond in such large numbers.

With less than a year remaining to complete the challenge, one-third of all the new endowed funds, which total $710,000, have been set up by members of the Class of 1991.

Lee Kempler established a fund in honor of his parents. Joe Lipscomb and Todd Fisher each created a fund to provide assistance for students planning international careers in public service. After creating his own fund, Tom Kearney thought it was such a great idea that he recruited John Kremer, John Metzler, and Lane Blumenfeld by e-mail to establish their own funds.

Other classmates contributing include Jacqueline V. Brady, Olivier E. Lemaigre (and his wife, Jennifer Lynn Lemaigre '83), and Cynthia Paddock.

With a minimum gift of $12,500 spread over five years, graduates from 1970 to 1999 may take part in the challenge. Also, alumni who work for companies with matching-gift programs can include the corporate contributions as part of their pledges.

Other new Bloomberg Challenge Funds were established in the past fiscal year by Stephanie L. Baker '70 and Rear Adm. Edward B. Baker Jr., USN (Ret.); Marijke M. Jurgens Dupree '92 and David Dupree; Robert M. Glen '87; Eric Pollish '85; Paul Smyke '94; and Laurence Zuriff '94.

Mr. Bloomberg's generous gifts for financial aid have enabled each division to set up a Bloomberg Challenge program. For details about the program in a specific school, contact that division's development office.

Get Together at Reunions in 2000

In April, the year 2000 reunion classes from the Schools of Arts and Sciences and Engineering (class years ending in 5 and 0) will celebrate their reunions during Homecoming weekend. Peabody, the School of Nursing, the School of Professional Studies in Business and Education, and the Bologna Center will also have homecoming or reunion events, and departmental reunions will be held at the School of Public Health.

Phone numbers for information follow each listing.

Arts and Sciences and Engineering--April 27-30 (410-516-5185)

Bologna Center--May 12-14 (011-39-51-232185)

Nursing--June 9-10 (410-955-4285)

Peabody--May 5-7 (410-659-8176)

Public Health--Department of Environmental Health Sciences, February 25; Nurse Midwives Reunion, March 3-4; Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, May (410-955-5194)

SPSBE--April 27-30, (410-516-7188)

Admiring handmade Delft tiles during a recent Alumni College in Holland are alumni "host" Simeon (Moan) Margolis, a triple graduate and School of Medicine professor, and his wife Mary Alice (Bebe), a familiar presence in the Department of Medicine, where she worked for many years.
Travel Program Explores Life Around the World

For more information on any of the following, write to Alumni Travel Program, 3211 N. Charles Street, Baltimore MD 21218; call 800-548-5481 or 410-516-0363; fax 410-516-6858; e-mail; or visit

Lower Caribbean and Orinoco River
Mar. 5 - 16

Village Life in Fiuggi, Italy
April 8 - 16

Rhine and Moselle Rivers Cruise
May 2 - 14

Village Life in Dordogne, France with history professor Orest Ranum
May 27 - June 4

Alumni College in Sorrento, Italy
June 5 - 13

Alumni College in Provence, France
June 13 - 21

China and the Yangtse River, with associate dean and political science professor Steven David
June 17 - July 4

Alumni College in Evora, Portugal
July 3 - 11

Alaska Family Program
July 14 - 23

Exploring Siam, Java, Bali, and Spice Islands
July 23 - Aug. 9

Alumni College in Kinsale, Ireland, with English professor and provost Steven Knapp
July 30 - Aug. 7

Round the World by Private Luxury Jet (Hawaii, Sidney, Bali, Bangkok, Delhi, Kenya, Istanbul, London)
Sept. 16 - Oct. 8

Great Pacific Northwest
Sept. 25 - Oct. 3

Egypt and Jordan by Private Plane, with Near Eastern studies professor Betsy Bryan
Oct. 3 - 17