Alumni Reminisce and Reconnect at Newark Academy Reunion

During a day of reminiscing, catching up and celebrating, Newark Academy alumni returned home to campus to reconnect with each other, faculty and staff at Reunion on Saturday, June 4, 2022.

The jam-packed day kicked off with the Alumni of Color Breakfast, featuring remarks from Director of Equity and Inclusion Rochelle Edwards and a student panel. The student panel included Justin Baker ’24, Isadora Martinez ’24, Abigail Pacheco ’24 and Yasmeena Sharif ’23, who each shared their experience as a student of color at NA.

“Having faculty of color has helped me so much and given me support, particularly as a student of color,” Isadora said.

Yasmeen expressed her gratitude to alumni of color for giving her advice along the way and noted that she hopes to pay it forward. “I hope to do the same in my senior year and pass down advice to the younger classes,” she said.

The annual Women of NA luncheon continued midday, featuring speakers Gina Mandelbaum ’75, Nancy Baird Harwood ’75, Louise Klebanoff ’76 and Dean of Students Pegeen Galvin, in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Newark Academy’s return to coeducation. 

“Being one of the first girls at NA was intimidating,” said Louise. “It was a realization that if I worked hard, I would earn respect and learn how to study. These lessons learned at NA carried through to college and medical school.”

Nancy added, “being a beneficiary of NA culture has been a blend of learning and curiosity. It’s been meaningful for my family and I hope to contribute to helping NA grow for the next half century.”

During the Alumni Awards Ceremony, the Alumni Association conferred its top honors for distinguished alumni to Dr. Salamishah Tillet ’92 (Achievement Award), S. Dillard Kirby ’77 (Fulton H. MacArthur Award), Peter Rundquist ’82 (Artistic Achievement Award), Danielle Schwartz Auerbach ’01, Ralph Pellecchia ’62 and Whitney Russell ’62 (Athletic Hall of Fame Awards) and Bob Mallalieu (Distinguished Faculty Award). Read more about the ceremony here.
The evening capped off with an outdoor dinner and reception in which alumni reconnected with each other, reminisced about their shared Newark Academy experiences and caught each other up on their successes. The grand finale illuminated campus with an incredible 15-minute fireworks show, sending off alumni until the next Reunion.
View photos from Reunion here.
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