Wheatley Alumni Monthly Newsletter

Number 12:  March 19, 2017

Dear Wheatley Wildcats and Other Interested Persons,

Welcome to the 12th Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter. It contains the following: An invitation to the 5th Annual Wheatley School Alumni Association NYC Lunch; An article about the Metropolitan Museum of Art, who’s president, chief operating officer, and interim chief executive is our own Daniel Weiss, Class of 1975; Information about “Staging Women’s Live’s in Academia,” co-edited by our own Nan Bauer-Maglin, Class of 1959; Appreciations of legendary Wheatley English teacher Jackie Hennelly and legendary Wheatley parents Harold Lewis Wattel and Seymour Buckner (and if you don’t recognize those last names, you didn’t graduate around the time when I did, in 1967): And notice of the passing of Lillian Shapiro (at age 99!), long-time East Williston School District Librarian. As always, photos are included when available (and several were).


The 5th Annual Wheatley School Alumni Association NYC Lunch will take place on Wednesday, March 29, 2017, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m., at Tir Na Nog Irish Bar and Grill, 254 West 31st Street, between 7th and 8th Avenues (closer to 8th, on the south side of 31st street, directly across 31st Street from Penn Station) in Manhattan. The cost is $55 per person for the following: Caesar salad and tomato and mozzarella salad; pasta with vodka sauce and pasta with pesto sauce; salmon and roast beef; roasted potatoes, sweet potatoes and steamed mixed vegetables; dessert; coffee, tea and sodas. Cash bar. I think the cost last time was $60. As always, if you want to attend but are struggling financially, you can tell me in confidence and a “wildcat angel” will cover it (one of the guests has already offered to pay for someone else!!!!). (((Needless to say, I never profit from any of the Wheatley lunches or other events I organize, although I occasionally lose a few bucks.))) The upstairs, which will be all ours, holds 58 folks. I am aiming for 55. Thirty-six people are already lined up, mostly repeat customers (these events have always been successful, or I wouldn’t keep organizing them, would I?). You don’t need to pay in advance, just bring dough (cash or check). But you DO need to RSVP (so we don’t oversubscribe). The current “Yes” and “Definite Maybe” responders are listed all the way down below.


IThomas P. Campbell resigned under pressure as the director and chief executive of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, after months of growing concerns among staff members and some trustees about its financial health and his capacity to lead the largest museum in the country. Met officials said that Mr. Campbell would stay on until June, the end of the fiscal year, but that Daniel H. Weiss, the Met’s president and chief operating officer, would be simultaneously serving as interim chief executive. Mr. Weiss will work with Mr. Campbell and the museum’s leadership on a transition plan while the Met seeks a new director, one of the most powerful in the art world. * * * Others have wondered whether Mr. Weiss, 59, might succeed Mr. Campbell since he has proved proficient as a financial steward and steadying force and is liked by the staff. In addition to an M.B.A., Mr. Weiss has a Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University in Western medieval and Byzantine art. According to a senior executive in the art world with knowledge of the board’s thinking on the succession plan, who refused to be identified because of the sensitive situation, the trustees intend to use the next few months to see if Mr. Weiss is up to the job. You can read the full New York Times Article (including all the palace intrigue).


Michelle A. Massé - Editor Nan Bauer-Maglin - Editor SUNY series in Feminist Criticism and Theory Price: $90.00 Hardcover - 380 pages Release Date: February 2017 ISBN10: N/A ISBN13: 978-1-4384-6421-3 http://www.sunypress.edu/p-6346-staging-womens-lives-in-academi.aspx

Argues that institutional change must accommodate women’s professional and personal life stages. Staging Women’s Lives in Academia demonstrates how ostensibly personal decisions are shaped by institutions and advocates for ways that workplaces, not women, must be changed. Addressing life stages ranging from graduate school through retirement, these essays represent a gamut of institutions and women who draw upon both personal experience and scholarly expertise. The contributors contemplate the slipperiness of the very categories we construct to explain the stages of life and ask key questions, such as what does it mean to be a graduate student at fifty? Or a full professor at thirty-five? The book explores the ways women in all stages of academia feel that they are always too young or too old, too attentive to work or too overly focused on family. By including the voices of those who leave, as well as those who stay, this collection signals the need to rebuild the house of academia so that women can have not only classrooms of their own but also lives of their own. Michelle A. Massé is Dean of the Graduate School, Professor of English and Women’s and Gender Studies at Louisiana State University, and President of the Women’s Caucus for the Modern Languages. She is the coeditor (with Katie J. Hogan) of Over Ten Million Served: Gendered Service in Language and Literature Workplaces, also published by SUNY Press. Now retired, Nan Bauer-Maglin was Professor of English at Borough of Manhattan Community College, City University of New York, and Academic Director of the City University of New York Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies. Her books include Final Acts: Death, Dying, and the Choices We Make (coedited with Donna Perry). .


As a small child, Jackie Hennelly kept a pair of shoes right next to her bed each night. She thought that if the end of the world came during the night, she would jump into her shoes and run down Rockland Avenue to St. Raymond’s Church, where she would be safe from harm. This childhood faith would evolve and grow over time to be one of her most defining qualities. Her faith in God fused with a rich sense of humor so deeply that she never failed to fully appreciate and wonder at the goodness and kindness of her fellow humans. She was born in Brooklyn to George and Gertrude Christie and as their only child was the delight of their lives. Her vivid descriptions of childhood adventures with cousins and friends would remind one of reading James Thurber’s stories, and we listened, wide-eyed and intrigued as she told us about about putting on a neighborhood circus (she was the back end of an elephant), growing up during the Depression, and all about the shenanagins she spearheaded at Camp St. Joseph. She graduated from Marymount College with a degree in English and Philosophy in 1948, and she never forgot anything that she read or learned. She worked at J.P. Morgan and Doubleday Publishing Company, and her many stories reveal her tremendous sense of humor and curiosity. She was incredibly competent and always had fun, no matter what she was doing, never forgetting the funny nicknames and habits of many of her bosses throughout the years. And she apparently charmed her way out of some tough scrapes, including the time that she mistakenly ordered the printing of thousands and thousands of copies of a book that should have numbered a hundred. She read Betty Friedan’s Feminine Mystique in 1963, which may have caused a judge to throw her out of court when she was questioned during a voir dire and asked by the judge what her husband did for a living. When she pointed out that he hadn’t asked the man who was questioned just before her what his wife did, out she went. She despised hypocrisy, prejudice, and unfairness of any kind. She later received an MA degree in Education from Adelphi College. She began teaching English and History to students in 9th through 12th grade at The Wheatley School in 1963, where she remained for 34 years. At the same time, she began her long-term volunteer career with the Girl Scouts of Nassau County, first as a troop leader and later in the executive offices, serving as President for several years. She continued to volunteer at the Girl Scouts both on the Finance Committee and the History Committee up until the time of her death, for a total run of 58 years. While at Wheatley, she had the great fortune to be a student teacher under the mentorship of Isabelle Auerbach, and their professional relationship developed into a deep friendship of over fifty years. My mother always defined herself in terms of her friends, and she never ceased marveling at how interesting and accomplished her many friends were. Jackie’s intellectual interests were boundless and her thirst to understand everything in the universe was legendary. (Just last month, she was explaining the difference to me between Plato and Aristotle.) She had the most inquisitive mind, and if you were having a discussion about anything, her questions would send you to the computer to quickly Google answers so you could continue in the conversation. (I always stayed close to my computer while on the phone with her.) If you ever went anywhere on a tour with my mother, you had to sit up front next to the tour guide so she could continue to pepper the poor soul with a million questions. In fact, several of her friends, having traveled with her many times, made a rule that she was only allowed to ask three questions per tour guide. She would sit up at night and thumb through volumes of The World Book Encyclopedia—no wonder she was a contestant on one of the initial Jeopardy! broadcasts, and Sunday afternoons you could find her zooming through the New York Times Crossword Puzzle, in-between reading and correcting papers from her students. We grew up under the guidance of a grammar professional—what small child do you know who understands what the predicate nominative is? Or who responds to the question, “Who’s there?” with “It is I!” She was a born teacher, and loved the theater, ballet and opera. We were her students and she trekked us through the Frick Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Guggenheim, and to the New York City Ballet and numerous plays on and off Broadway, stopping at Rumplemayer’s after an evening performance for a late night English muffin. I believe she delighted more in watching us and sharing our reactions than in anything else. Her students were her most prized accomplishments, and she regaled us with funny stories from her classroom, such as the student who told her, “Hey, Mrs. H., I liked Hamlet—but, jeez—it’s so full of clichés!” She loved her term as Yearbook Advisor and took her Editors to the yearbook factory in Gettysburg one year in a Budget-Rent-a-Car so they could see the process that followed the fruits of their labors. She found time to play bridge throughout her life with many, many different groups of friends. She was self-deprecating about her ability, and as recently as last Monday was practicing bidding with her good friend, Barbara Wengler. My mother adored tennis and was a terrific player. One of her most cherished memories is winning the Mixed Doubles Championship at the Port Washington Yacht Club with her dear friend and sometimes-tennis partner, Ken Johnston, Sr. She could tell you about the elegance of Roger Federer’s backhand or Serena’s serve with such accuracy you might think you were watching the match. She was a loyal (and heartbroken) Brooklyn Dodgers fan and knew baseball stats like the back of her hand. When she once met the famous pitcher Ralph Branca later in life and he was surprised that she recognized him, she told him—“How could I not recognize you? I knew every day what you ate for breakfast!” She treasured a letter she had from Bobby Thompson that was the result of a project one of her students was working on. She loved the brand-new Mets because they were underdogs and she took us to see them in their infancy at the Polo Grounds. Jackie Hennelly loved to have fun and she had a devilish sense of humor. She and my father had a tempestuous relationship, and when their friends, Betty and Henry Latham, gave them steak knives one year for their anniversary, they decided to send two photos with a thank you note. The photos featured them each individually sitting up against a wall that had apparently been used by the other for target practice, with the knives carefully spaced around their heads, their faces terrified. The note said: “Thanks for the knives! We’ve put them to good use!” And then there was the bugle. My mother played the bugle growing up in her school band, and as a counselor at Camp St Joseph. She was later known to play hail and farewell to guests coming and going, and that bugle inevitably came out at parties once the fun got going. My father would say goodnight and go to bed at midnight, but there were always a few neighborhood party stragglers who hung on and encouraged my mother to get her bugle and play Reveille. She could never refuse the chance for fun, and it actually did result in several smushed bugles, courtesy of an irate husband. So, between the knives and the bugle, I think you can get the picture! My mother always found the humor in things and had the great gift of being able to laugh at herself. This was her most endearing quality. She was very proud of her role as Eucharistic Minister at St. Francis Hospital in Port Washington, and she loved to bring the joy of sharing the Eucharist with patients there. She was a ray of sunshine with an unforgettable laugh and an insatiable thirst for knowledge. She loved her family, her friends, teaching, playing tennis, golf, and bridge, volunteering, and talking for hours on any topic you can imagine. She was a passionate supporter of animal rights and gave generously to the poor, downtrodden, and oppressed. She was extremely open-minded and at the same time held firm beliefs, never wavering from the straight and narrow. She gave so much of herself to others and still often heard from former students who loved her and admired her beyond measure. Patty and I were incredibly blessed to have been her first and most loyal students. Jackie Hennelly never failed, never faltered, remained herself until the end and enjoyed 90 smashing years of life. We must celebrate that! She no longer has to worry about jumping into her shoes by her bed at night and running to the church where she will be safe. She is there already, before God, enfolded in the loving arms of the Virgin Mary. And knowing our mom, she is probably trying to teach the Seraphim and Cherubim a few things about playing those trumpets. ~Good night, sweet Mamá, and flights of angels sing thee to thy rest


Harold Lewis Wattel, father of Karen Wattel Arenson, 1966, and Jill Wattel Stockinger, 1969, passed away on January 29, 2017, at age 95. Harold was a longtime professor of economics and former dean of the School of Business at Hofstra University and spent decades helping to grow the school into what it is today, family and educators said. “Hofstra was his life and our lives for his whole career,” said his daughter, Karen Arenson, of Manhattan. “He started with it when it was a tiny college.” Harold died at the Zicklin Hospice in Riverdale, NY. He loved art, poetry, books, travel and people. He was born in Brooklyn September 30, 1921, to David and Caroline Abrams Wattel. He and his late sister, Babette, grew up in Queens, NY. He graduated from Queens College in 1942, worked briefly in Washington DC, then enlisted in the Navy, serving on the USS Massachusetts in the South Pacific. He married Sara Gordon on September 1, 1946 after meeting in Washington after the war. He earned a masters degree in economics from Columbia University and a Ph.D. from the New School for Social Research and began teaching at Hofstra in 1947. He chaired Hofstra's economics department and its Division of Business, which became the School of Business under his leadership. He worked in the NYS Consumer Affairs Department under Gov. Averell Harriman, was a business consultant and served on many nonprofit boards, including the NYS Coop Extension Service, the NYS Lung Association, the Parodneck Foundation and IPRO, where he represented consumer interests in health care. In 1964, he was a member of the state's Moreland Commission that recommended decontrolling liquor prices. In 1988-89, he taught at Shanghai University of Finance and Economics in China. After his wife's death in 1995, he met Phyllis Tartell and they enjoyed many years together. He is survived by his daughters, Karen Arenson (Gregory) and Jill Stockinger (Max); granddaughter, Morgan Arenson (Cliff Korn); grandson Kaolin Fire (Amy); great-grandsons Fenris Asher Fire and Phoenix Zephyr Fire; and Phyllis Tartell. Published in The New York Times on Jan. 31, 2017


BUCKNER - Seymour K., passed peacefully at home at the age of 91 surrounded by loved ones on Monday January 16. Sy was born September 5, 1925 in Jamaica, NY to Emanuel and Estelle. He took time off from his studies at the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business to proudly serve as a corporal in the Army Air Corps, an experience which holds some of his greatest memories. After obtaining his degree, he took over the family business in Jamaica. Buckner's was recognized as Long Island's Largest Bridal and Formal Salon. Under Sy's management the business grew to five stores on Long Island and New Jersey. His commitment to community was evidenced as a Mason in the Evergreen Lodge, a co-founder of the Roslyn Country Club's Don't Move Away Association, chairing the National Retail Merchants Association, an advisor to the Town of North Hempstead's Council on Aging and involvement with the U of P Alumni Association. He married Maurine Patricia Cades from Atlantic City, his wife of over sixty years. Together they had five children. Fellow boaters may remember seeing the Buckner clan aboard their boat The Lucky Bucks at the Capri in Port Washington. More important than business and community, Sy instilled the imperative of "family first" in his children, reserving Sundays for family activities only, and nightly family dinners which prohibited any phone call interruptions. Compulsory enjoyment included mandatory home music fests and endless 8MM movie nights with the Windt cousins. He is survived by his sister Helene Windt of Plainview and five children; Leslie and husband Richard Strauss of Chester CT, Janice Buckner of Huntington, Hal and wife Peggy Buckner of Leeds ME, Mindy Buckner and husband Ralph Goldstein of Alexandria VA and Toni and husband Frank LaPietra of Pouqhqaug NY; 12 grandchildren Jessica and husband Chris, Abigail and husband Eric, Mandy and husband Jay, Michael, Gabriel and wife Katherine, Felice, Nakita, Emily, Katrina, Dylan, Makana and Daniel; 8 great grandchildren Mo, Madeline, Isabel, Sam, Boden, Max, Blake and Tucker; and his very special friend Patricia Gilmore. He is buried in Montefiore Cemetery in Springfield Gardens. In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made to Honor Flight Long Island, an organization that honors veterans and provided Sy with one of his most memorable experiences. Published in Newsday on Jan. 18, 2017


Confirmed Attendees at the March 29 Luncheon

Last Name Current First Name Year
Calderon Peter 1961
Jalonack Blum Carol 1961
Kopelman Richard 1961
Messing Sommer Jeanne 1961
Rennert Ruth 1962
Aufhauser R. Keith 1963
Krakauer Gary 1963
Krane Crane-Campanella Deborah 1963
aJaffe Allen Levine Penny 1964
Liebert Michael 1964
Nissenfeld Moore Diane 1964
Alpert Henry 1965
Resnicow Norman 1965
Till Peter 1965
Brodsky Meryl 1966
Gersh Whitman Gretchen 1966
Jalonack Richard 1966
Kent Bermant Alison 1966
Levy Claude 1966
Maxim Greenleaf Katherine 1966
Schuh Silver Marjorie 1966
Spiro Neuman Bette 1966
Stone Suzanne 1966
Wattel Arenson Karen 1966
Whack Harold 1966
Engoron Arthur 1967
Jacobs Robert 1967
Liebert Suzy 1967
Orosz Bruce 1967
Stevens Nancy 1967
Brinn Robin 1969
Ehrenberg Halayne 1969
Weissman Frisch Nancy 1969
Wolfert Steven 1969
Hack Silverberg Robin 1971
Heffner Pollack Martha 1972
Krakauer Steven 1972
Simel Peter 1973
Steinberger Pearce Susan 1973
Lubin Mark 1975
Gould Schwarz Andrea 1977
Ueno Takemi 1983
Mahaffey David 1988

That’s it for now. Looking forward to seeing 50+ of you on March 29 (March Madness!).


Contact Art: artengoron@gmail.com, Tel: 646-872-4833

© Wheatley Alumni Association 2016