Dartmouth Class of 1965 Class Meeting

Pierce’s Lodge, Etna NH

Minutes of 14 October 2012

Officers Present: Roger Hansen (President), Ken McGruther (Vice-President), Mike Gonnerman (Treasurer), George Wittreich (Minis Chairman), Steve Fowler (50th Reunion). Also Present: Bill Webster, Hank Amon, Larry Duffy, Brian Walsh, John Rodgers, Steve Waterhouse, Jim Griffiths, Tom Campbell


The meeting was called to order at 9:37 AM in the Dining Room of Pierce’s Lodge, Etna, NH. President Roger Hansen welcomed all and opened the meeting with a few remarks, specifically including thanking George and Jane Wittreich for having put on an excellent Mini over the weekend, and to Bob and French McConnaughey for having hosted the Friday night reception at their home in Thetford VT. Minutes of both last year’s meeting in October 2011 and the Executive Committee meeting held on July 10th at Webster’s were circulated, reviewed, and approved.


Treasury Report: Treasurer Mike Gonnerman reported on Class Treasury.  Highlights as of Sept. 30, 2012:  There are $16,000 in unrestricted funds, including fees for the Mini yet to be disbursed.  The majority of the restricted funds are for the Passion for Skiing/Snow project, with lesser amounts for the Alumni Book Fund and 50th Reunion.  More than $268,000 has been raised for the book and film elements of which our Class has contributed about half, with 40 other Classes and some corporations and other organizations contributing the balance.  The Passion Project will be completed during this fiscal year.


Usual expenses of donations to College programs and bank fees are essentially unchanged.  It was generally noted that about $5000 should be held in reserve as “seed money” for the 50th Reunion. $3000 is budgeted for the “Etiquette Dinner” for the Class of 2015. A similar amount is budgeted for 2014. The Class will be “saving” $7000/year since the College has picked up the expense of Dartmouth Alumni Magazine subscriptions and insurance.  Dues will remain at $65 per year.  With about 280 dues payers, this provides about $18,200 in annual dues income.


Out-of-Hanover Mini-Reunions:

Discussion of the treasury segued to the topic of the “Etiquette Dinner” in July 2013 with the Class of 2015.  In the interest of maximizing participation at the dinner by Classmates, it was agreed that we would combine this with a weekend Mini Reunion to celebrate our communal 70th Birthday and also hold the “Executive Committee” Meeting for 2013, rather than gathering at Webster’s.  This was formally moved, seconded and approved. Roger Hansen had been pursuing the possibility of the Class birthday being in Washington DC in May; this motion deferred that gathering, perhaps to our collective 75th birthday.

Ken McGruther described possibilities for a Spring 2014 Mini on Amelia Island, Florida. After some discussion it was the general consensus of the Class to combine this with the annual Shrimp Festival held on the first weekend of May each year in Fernandina Beach, which provides a ready-made focus of interest on the artwork and culinary offerings associated with the Festival. On that basis Ken agreed to investigate rooming opportunities (ideally at the Hampton Inn and Suites downtown) and if possible reserve a block of rooms.  He and Jorunn will host an event either Thursday or Friday night at their place 1.5 miles east of downtown. Another possibility would be to show the updated version of P4Ski movie, hoping to attract Classmates from the southeast. Ken said he would be asking for “seed money” to start making bookings, but that he was not at this time prepared to ask for a specific figure.


Steve Waterhouse subsequently described the Vail Winter Carnivail for 2013: dates are March 1-3, and Steve is hoping for the biggest Carnivail ever, with more classes participating. Plans include a class dinner on Thursday night, a Friday dinner at Sonnenalp Restaurant, and a Saturday night gathering featuring the updated P4Ski movie showing, with participants from the 1950 Winter Olympics in attendance. Steve noted that the showing of P4Ski movie in conjunction with the Dartmouth Winter Carnival in 2013 “needs a plan.”


50th Reunion: Steve Fowler reported on planning for the 50th Reunion on behalf of himself and co-chair Mike Bettman. Dates are June 11-16, 2015, with the “core dates” being June 12-14th. Extension of the reunion beyond the core dates has been common among earlier classes to provide for the possibility of “Affinity Group” meetings and other activities.  Steve asked for help on “existential issues” such as (1) what is a reasonable objective for attendance? (2) whether to broaden the weekend to include additional activities; and (3) associated issues like preparation of the Yearbook, using Facebook, using the Website, etc. Discussion centered on improving the potential for participation. Steve said that based on past Reunion totals that 200 Classmates would be “big for us” even if the College expects more.


Given that cost may be a barrier to attendance at the reunion for some Classmates, a motion was made and approved to authorize Steve Fowler and Mike Bettman to consider the various possible ways the Class might help and to make a specific recommendation to the Class for this at next meeting. Discussion concluded with agreement that via Executive Order President Roger Hansen could authorize up to $5000 for seed money for the 50th Reunion, that money to be eventually reimbursed to the Treasury after the Reunion.


As part of the effort to increase participation, Roger Hansen stated that he nearly had the Affinity Group effort organized and would be putting out information on how we would be encouraging Classmates to communicate with others who had common interests and activities as undergraduates.

Dartmouth College Fund:  Don Bradley has recruited 13 new assistant agents for the campaign.  He looks forward to having a handful of assistant head agents to focus on various leadership gifts and/or projects as we move toward the Reunion.


Miscellaneous Reports: Class Newsletter-Dick Harris doing four per year, with three being hardcopy. Class Website-Jim Hamilton has it well organized and keeps it updated. Bartlett Tower Society-with the passing of Doug Leitch, new leadership is being sought.  Dartmouth Alumni Council- Peter Frederick, who now heads the trustee recruiting effort, was in New York City on College for interviews; Ed Keible is now Class Representative to the Alumni Council; Mike Gonnerman is the rep from the Class Treasurers Association and is on the committee for honorary degrees. We would particularly welcome suggestions of Classmates to be considered for honorary degrees in 2015. Each of our Council members welcome questions and suggestions regarding Council activities. Hank Amon reported that the Class of 1965 Scholarships continue to fund one Class Scholar in each undergraduate class.


In-Hanover Mini-Reunions: George Wittreich reported satisfaction with this weekend and again thanked the McConnaugheys for their hospitality. Classmates now resident in the Upper Valley, and others who return for Homecoming over October 26-28th were encouraged to march in the Homecoming Parade on 10/26 carrying the Class of 1965 sign. Next year’s dates for the Mini will coincide with Homecoming: October 11-13th with the football game being against Yale. Jim Griffiths volunteered to put together the hay-ride for the parade. Mike and Betsy Gonnerman have volunteered to host the Friday night special. Dates for 2014 are not yet firm.


Class Projects: Mike Gonnerman reported on behalf of Stu Keiller. The College has a planning document for the main Lodge and bunkhouses at Mt. Moosilauke. Septic system challenges have been addressed (composting toilets). Handicap access issues remain outstanding. During the coming months Stu and others will pursue the question of our having the rebuilding of the Class of 1965 Bunkhouse as a reunion project. Our potential contribution per the College would be around $200,000. A motion was made that the College be notified by the Class that we would make a decision about a project at our 2013 Executive Committee meeting in July.  In order to move forward, we would need a clear description of the plans for the Moosilauke Lodge and ’65 Cabin, with cost estimates. Lacking this we would be unable to make a positive recommendation to the Class Meeting in October 2013. Roger Hansen noted that the College has a number of “shovel-ready” projects which it has offered as Class Projects, but this met with little interest from Classmates, who seemed to prefer a unique Class of ’65 effort. Steve Waterhouse suggested that the Class should get through the P4Ski project before committing to another big-cost effort. He also suggested that any future major contributions to any project should be accepted by the College as counting towards contributions on behalf of our 50th reunion, which was generally agreed.


The meeting was adjourned at 11:28 AM.


Submitted by Ken McGruther

Vice-President and Acting Secretary