61  The electronic age has come to the rescue of your class correspondents again.  A simple email along with a steady but under whelming flow of snail mail has generated enough copy to sustain us through two columns.  As a result, we beg your patience.  If your newsworthy input of family, career, travel and misadventures doesn’t appear in this column Joanna will happily include yours in the next submission.


First, from Arthur Kroll who writes “I was recently appointed adjunct professor at the Baruch School of Business and am teaching a course on deferred compensation.  I was also named Editor in Chief of the Journal of Retirement Planning.  Additionally, I am on the board of Student Advocacy, an organization that works on behalf of children by using their expertise in law and education to advocate the maximum level of education or services provided by the law.  Last year we serviced over 20,000 young children. Finally, in my philanthropic efforts I am funding 7 doctors to find a cure for AML.”  Arthur recently met with classmates Steve Solomon and Samuel Gilbert '60, both fraternity brothers.  Sam is working as an attorney while Steve is a consultant to the New York City Teachers Pension Fund.


Now, we have an interesting story that begins with a question.  Who are our oldest classmates?  Don’t wrack your brains.  James R. Nolan PhD '67,provides the answer (age 84).  In response to our email request, James responded “ My wife, Marta, and I are hoping we will be able to make it to the 50th Reunion.  The last one we attended was the 40th. (or was it the 35th?) “


James continues, “The thought now occurs that we ‘owe’ the Class of 61 some biographical information.  Our undergrad status at Cornell was somewhat different.   We were married with three vibrant children, and unlike most of my fellow undergrads, I was supporting my parents.  After graduation, I stayed on and earned a PhD in phylogenetic botany (I was older than the Chairman of my Special Committee).  My name is listed in the ’61 yearbook, but no data or photo.  At the 25th Reunion (at which we had a ball), my name was again listed and, again, no data or photo.  The reason for the omissions: In '61, I felt that I was ‘above’ football games, frat parties, or panty raids.  Twenty-five years later, I felt that the accomplishments of my classmates were far 'above' any of mine.


I may not have set the world on fire with a fancy PhD, but perhaps some of our shenanigans might now be of interest for Cornelian posterity.  I know we are the oldest members of Class '61.  Possibly, Marta might be the only one born, early 1920s, in a small village a stone's throw from Florence, Italy.  I may be the only one who was a high school dropout (from a vocational art school in NYC), a veteran of the Depression era CCC, and a vet of WWII (N. Africa, India, Burma).  Oh, and for the record, prior to Cornell, I was a layout artist with BBDO.  I am now a retired biology professor from SUNY.  (Also taught, gratis, a 3-credit Art Dept lab course in the 'evolution' of the Roman alphabet.)”  And, as a postscript, “The only fraternity parties Marta & I attended were the ones at which we were asked to be the chaperons.  And, yes, we always had a scintillating, eye-twinkling time.”


Ken Blanchard, PhD'67, sent a note regarding life in the not-so-slow lane.  “I have four jobs.  First I am still writing.  Two books come out this year called The One Minute Entrepreneur and Know Can Do: How to Put Your Knowledge into Action.


Secondly, I'm Chief Spiritual Officer of The Ken Blanchard Companies that I co-founded with my wife Margie (McKee) '62, MA '65.  Her brother Tom  is President and CEO, and our son Scott '88 and daughter Debbie are very active.  We have 300 folks with offices in Toronto and London, and partners in 30 nations.


Thirdly, classmate Phil Hodges and I co-founded a Lead Like Jesus ministry.  When I read the Bible for the first time I realized everything that I ever taught or wrote about, Jesus did with twelve inexperienced guys.  We think He is the greatest leadership role model of all time. 


Finally, I play a major leadership role at The Ken Blanchard College of Business at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix.  We were recently chosen the number one online university in the United States.”


So, in short, “I’m ‘refiring,’ not ‘retiring’.”


And, on a personal note, our family year has been marked by two major events, the marriages of our daughters.  In October, Catherine married her Karl in a traditional Savannah wedding.  Following their honeymoon in Portugal, the couple resides in Atlanta. As reported earlier sister Elizabeth married her Karl in May.  This bride also was beautiful (and Dad was proud)!  Please continue sending your input for the column to either Joanna McCully or me: Doug Fuss, 5 Pineside Lane, Savannah, GA. 31411; dougout@attglobal.net; Joanna McCully, 1607 Hilton Head Blvd., Lady Lake, FL. 32159; joannacelticlady@aol.com