Five Sarah Lawrence College alumnae/i received citations for achievement and service at the College's 2009 reunion. Those honored for achievement are Stuart G. Hopps, MFA ’69, heralded as one of Britain’s leading choreographers; Nancy Press ’69, co-founder of Child Aid, a nonprofit organization supporting disadvantaged children in Latin America; Jiway Tung ’89 who created a residential training program in Indonesia called Karang Widya, Sanskrit for “The Learning Farm,” to teach at-risk youth organic farming, entrepreneurship, computer proficiency, creative arts and important life skills; and Heather Winters ’84 film producer and writer, best known as executive producer of Morgan Spurlock’s highly acclaimed Super Size Me. Diana Chambers Leslie ’69 is cited for more than 15 years of active service to the College.
Stuart G. Hopps MFA '69
Stuart G. Hopps MFA '69 is one of Britain’s most celebrated choreographers. In his distinguished 40-year career, he has choreographed for the Royal Shakespeare Company, the English National Opera, The Royal Opera, and The Royal National Theatre as well as New York’s Metropolitan Opera and La Scala in Milan. His film credits include Othello, A Knight's Tale, Sense and Sensibility, and The Wicker Man. He has worked extensively with director Kenneth Branagh, choreographing Hamlet, As You Like It, and Love’s Labour’s Lost, among others. Most recently, Hopps completed work on Nutcracker: The Untold Story, starring John Turturro and Nathan Lane. At Sarah Lawrence, Hopps studied with Bessie Schönberg, whom he considers a powerful influence in his life. The recipient of an honorary Doctorate of Arts from City University in London, Hopps was nominated for this award by Susan G. Strausberg '62.
Nancy A. Press '69
A medical anthropologist and professor at Oregon Health & Science University, Nancy Press '69 is co-founder of Child Aid, an organization that partners with talented, committed indigenous groups and individuals in Latin America to increase childhood literacy as a way to change society. Child Aid helps develop innovative and sustainable library, literacy, and education programs. Press and her husband, Rick Carroll, were moved to action upon seeing both the extreme poverty and extreme resilience of poor farmers in Oaxaca, Mexico in 1987. Begun with $10,000 of their own money–all they could then spare–Child Aid has grown into a nonprofit organization with a board of 17, program staffs in Mexico and Guatemala, and a yearly operating budget of more than $1.5 million. Press was recently honored for her humanitarian efforts with the Stand on a Better World Award.
Jiway F. Tung '89
Jiway F. Tung ’89 is the founder and director of The Learning Farm (TLF). At this live-in, life-skills training center, at-risk Indonesian youth learn to become healthy, productive participants in society by growing and selling organic produce. Developed with ongoing support from World Education, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and Muslim Aid and a recent $20,000 grant from Hard Rock International and World Hunger Year, TLF has expanded its reach into a local school for low income students and also offers training for local farmers. Prior to creating this remarkable program, Tung studied political science at Sarah Lawrence, earned his master’s degree in sustainable international development at Brandeis University, organized immigrant workers in California, received an Amnesty International fellowship to research refugee issues on the Texas/Mexico border, and worked as a community organizer in the Bronx. As nominator Peter Ajemian ’89 says of Tung, “Jiway is continually building community wherever he goes.”
Heather M. Winters '84
Film producer and writer Heather Winters '84 is co-executive producer of the film Super Size Me, which won the 2004 Sundance Film Festival's Best Director Award and was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Documentary Film. With her husband, Joe Morley, she is co-founder of the independent film production company, Studio-on-Hudson, which specializes in the production, financing, and representation of independent feature films and documentaries. The studio's award-winning work includes Class Act, a look at the decline of arts education in America's public schools, and the Sundance-winning Anywhere, USA, a highly original, tender, quirky, humorous look at life in America. Winters studied film and music at Sarah Lawrence, and her early work in film and television includes several animated children's series and MTV's The Real World. Susan Pinkwater MFA '84 nominated Winters for this honor.
Diana Chambers Leslie '69
When Diana Chambers Leslie '69 joined the Sarah Lawrence Board of Trustees in 1994, she brought years of experience as a consultant to nonprofit organizations. Her first assignment was to design and lead the College in a strategic planning process. Leslie then became chair of the Trustee Committee and for many years has focused on recruiting new trustees and strengthening the ways the board works. In June 2008, Leslie began her fifth term as vice chair of the board. Also an active fundraiser for the College, she established an endowed fund that underwrites student-initiated activities that foster community on campus. In nominating Leslie for this citation, Ellen Schloss Flamm '59 says: "Diana has always been interested in enhancing the social climate at the College, encouraging people to learn from and about one another."