Back Talk

Back Talk

Q: What groups do you belong to?

I’m a member of the Junior League in Richmond, where I’m from. I love the community service, camaraderie, and the friendships I’ve made. It’s a women’s organization. I’ll never forget, a few years ago a man wanted to join, and people got all worked up about it. I said, “Let him join! He’ll get scared off after a meeting or two.”
M. Lee Hall MFA ’07

I’m on the board of trustees of the United Nations International School, which occupies a lot of my non-professional time. The school has 1,500 students from 80 countries. The board is one of the most culturally diverse and interesting groups of people. Two-thirds are UN ambassadors and officials.
Patrick Rona ’87

My groups include six “train friends” who sit together morning and evening on the commuter rail, keeping up with each others’ lives even without seeing each other any other time; various small communities of church friends; a group of sports enthusiasts at work.
Mary Malcolm ’67

I’m a trustee of the Fort Ticonderoga museum on Lake Champlain. It’s a French and British fort that was part of the Revolutionary War. My grandfather rebuilt the fort in 1905.
Alexandra Kuhel ’88

I don’t belong to any formal organizations, or even informal ones. But I suppose I do take part in general interests and occupations that are similar to those of others. I’m a member of the Italian-American community in North Jersey; I’m a member of the Higher Education group at Oxford University Press; I’m an avid reader of American modern and contemporary fiction ... okay, I’m just really into Toni Morrison right now; I’m the crazy member of my neighborhood who walks three bull terriers around on the weekends; I’m an amateur baker; I’m a twenty-something trying to make it in Manhattan (aren’t we all?).
Christina Mancuso ’08

My freelance editors’ support group, which provides sociable gatherings to share work problems and to converse with others who find whether or not to use a serial comma as interesting a topic as I do. Also, the American Civil Liberties Union.
Elizabeth Null ’65

I’m involved in the Japan Exchange and Teaching Program. After I finished my undergraduate degree in California, I went to Japan to teach English through this program, and I’ve been a member of the alumni association since 1992. Every year I go to SLC with the Japanese consulate to talk about the program. Living abroad is an experience everyone should have—it makes you see your own country, and yourself, in a whole different light
Nicole Bongiorno MA ’95