Class News

Smith College Class of 1962

Smith College Class News

Smith College Class of 1962

Class of 1962 Fall 2016 Newsletter

President’s Report: Judith Tuchman Ratzan

I am so looking forward to returning to Smith next spring for our 55th reunion. The college has a new design planned for Neilson Library, conceived by Maya Lin, the renowned designer of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington DC. It will not be ready for us to see by reunion, but perhaps we will be able to see the models.

In addition there is a new Jill Ker Conway Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center planned to build on the existing Center for Women and Financial Independence. This new center was provided by an anonymous gift but speaks to the need for education of independent working women, fully in charge of their careers.

As I stated in my last newsletter there will be financial assistance for classmates who need help in covering the cost of registration but would like to come to reunion. There are a variety of fees including:
$30 per person fee to the college
$150 flat fee for three nights lodging in a college room, breakfast included
$45 per dinner. The class is having two dinners, Friday night and Saturday night.
There is an additional dinner on Thursday night for those who are present with all the other reunion classes.
$55 class fee to cover entertainment, souvenirs, headquarters expenses etc.

If you would like to apply for assistance please contact me at so that we can build this need into our budget and be prepared. The officers will discuss and make arrangements for these fees to be covered. There will be nothing published or in any way acknowledged that you have been given any stipend. We want everyone who wants to come to have the opportunity to do so.

Treasurer’s Report: Priscilla Benson

Fiscal year 2015-2016 has not seen any significant change in our financial status. We started the year with $29,456.97 in our account, and ended with $29,463.30. Thus, we have a healthy amount going into Reunion 2017. Going forward, there are going to be significant changes in the class’ fiscal management. Up until now, we have had our own bank accounts and our treasurer writes all checks and submits all appropriate forms to the college and to the government.

The college began taking over the class accounts after Reunion 2014. They will take over ours after Reunion 2017 next spring. Some class treasurers were keeping the bank-held treasury accounts in their own names and not sending the required annual IRS reports, thus, sometimes making it difficult to access the accounts if the treasurer died. The college thinks it is better for all classes to have Smith-held, rather than bank-held, treasury accounts. Please note: the class of ’62 has always had their bank-held treasury account in the name of the class, with both treasurer and president authorized to write checks, and has also submitted all required IRS 990s and college reports.

We will still have control of our monies, but the accounts and necessary paperwork will be under Smith management. It is suggested that we no longer ask for dues, but pay for future reunions from the class reunion fee and our healthy treasury balance. By switching to free broadcast email newsletters, courtesy of Alumnae Relations, we have saved a significant amount of money over expensive print newsletters, contributing to our improved and very healthy bottom line.

Reunion Chair: Alix Lamont Golden Gutkowsi

Just another reminder that the dates for our 55th Reunion are May 25-28th. Those who want to arrive on Thursday the 25th will be able to do so. There will be multiple events over the weekend. These include faculty lectures included in the price of registration, class dinners on Friday night and Saturday night, farewell brunch on Sunday. We are working on entertainment for Friday afternoon as well as during the dinners. Saturday will be our class meeting as well as a class panel. For those not interested in staying on campus, a block of rooms has been reserved for our class at the Fairfield Inn and Suites. Telephone 413-587-9600. Rooms will be held for us until April 11, 2017 at a rate of $119.00 per night. We are still in need of volunteers, so this is the time to step up and let me know that you can help. Many thanks.

Report from Class Fund Team:

Thank you to the 235 members of our class who made a gift to the college last fiscal year. In the act of giving to the college, you are educating today’s students about one Smith tradition that they will need to carry on when they leave campus so that their own daughters will have the opportunity to experience an affordable education at the preeminent Smith of the future. You can help even more by letting others in our class know how important our gifts are.

Last year, your gifts contributed an impressive total of $728,584 to the college. Of that total, you gave $261,357 to The Smith Fund. Every single dollar given to The Smith Fund immediately impacts current students through student aid, faculty research, study abroad, enhanced technology, library resources, sustainability efforts, and new programs and initiatives. Other areas supported by your gifts included endowed scholarships, art museum programs, student research, annuities and Friends groups. Every single gift is powering the education of promising Smithies.

With just over seven months left until we gather on campus, it is time to make your Reunion gift. We are thrilled to report that the momentum is already building. We have already received reunion gifts and pledges totaling $169,000 since July 1st! Please add your gift to that total as soon as possible. We are asking that everyone who made a gift last year, please give again this year with a special reunion gift – AND we ask that 55 more of you make a special gift this year. Did you know that it only takes five donors to increase our class participation by one percentage point? This is your 55th year since graduation. Please make it special! Thank you from your Class Fund Team.

Gifts may be made online at or by calling 1-800-241-2056, option #1. Mailed gifts should be sent to Smith College, 33 Elm Street, Northampton, MA 01063

Planned Gift Chair: Pam Hendrikson

This is a reminder that the Planned Giving Staff at the college is happy to consult with classmates on the opportunities available to us. Do take advantage of their knowledge and help. In some cases a bequest or planned gift can even provide reunion credit.

Spring 2016 Class Newsletter

From the President, Judith Tuchman Ratzan:
2016 is just flying by. I have my 50th medical school reunion in April and that means that our 55th college reunion in 2017 is not that far off.

Under president McCartney important issues are being addressed in a rational, logical way. As noted in her NYT editorial of December 21, 2015 and again in the Smith Alumnae Quarterly, the issue of free speech on campus is an important one. It would seem the college is working toward enabling free speech in an atmosphere where people are respected for having different views and not castigated. They are focusing on the positive aspect of debating the issues and trying to get more views represented in the Sophian . Certainly this approach seems reasonable at a time of ideological division in so much of our country.

Amidst all the craziness of world and U.S. events, it is nice to look forward to the calm, serene Smith campus and once again meeting up with old friends and classmates. I hope you are starting to think now of returning to Smith for Reunion May 25-May 28, 2017. If there is anyone who needs financial help to attend reunion, the class will once again try to make funds available for a limited number of applicants. More information on this to follow, but if you think you will need help, please contact me at

Treasurer’s Report, Priscilla Benson:
We ended 2014-2015 on a positive note. We started with $29,273.77 and ended the year with $29,456.97. This is a nice start, but we need more funds going into reunion to cover expenses. Many items need to be paid before we receive any of the monies from registration. So, if anyone is a life member and would like to make a donation to the class it is more than welcome. If you are not a life member, this would be the time to pay your dues. They remain a bargain at $35.00 per year. Please send your checks to:
Priscilla J. Benson
80 Lyme Road, Box 376
Hanover, NH 03755

Reunion Chair, Alix Lamont Golden Gutkowski:
Just reminding everyone that our 55th Reunion will be May 25-28, 2017. Would love to hear from anyone who would be willing to help in any way: Parade Coordinator, Parade Signage – I know there are a lot of clever people out there, House Rep Coordinator, Art Exhibit Organizer, etc. If you can think of a job, we probably need someone to do it! Looking forward to hearing from you and reconnecting.

Report from the Class Fund Team:
It is hard to believe but your fund team is beginning our pre-reunion planning! It has truly been a pleasure working with such a responsive and generous class, and we feel assured we will continue our longstanding reputation as record breakers and record setters.

As you probably recall, we will announce a five-year comprehensive total at our 55th reunion next May. Any gifts made by classmates between now and May 26, 2017 will be included in that five year total, along with all other gifts given to Smith since our last reunion. This includes gifts to The Smith Fund each year as well as annuities, gifts to Friends groups, endowed fund gifts and more.

However, we have some work to do before the end of this Fund year June 30, 2016. As of the middle of April, the Class of 1962 has raised so far this Fund year:

Comprehensive – $641,794 compared to our goal of $1 million. The Smith Fund portion of that total gift is $192,867 compared to our Smith Fund goal of $270,000 for this year. So, we are looking for a lot of you ’62s to step up between now and the end of the Fund year on June 30 to help us reach our Comprehensive and Smith Fund goals. We really need your help!

The good news is that participation is currently at 46% compared to our goal of 55% participation, 4% ahead of where the class was at this time last year. Good news indeed, as we were long known for low participation, and we thank you for appreciating that every gift matters regardless of its size.

Please help us reach our goals. Gifts to the College can be made online at or by calling 1-800-241-2056, option #1. Gifts may also be mailed to The Smith Fund, 33 Elm Street, Northampton, MA 01063.