Zach Elkin ’05

Meeting the educational needs of gifted students in Chicago

Will Van Dyke ’02

Composer, orchestrator + music director on and off Broadway

"I personally feel the way that you combat the lawlessness of creativity is to treat your craft as you would a job."

Wendy Fischman ’89, P’25

Researching how people think and understand

"I think we were all expected to participate and make the community what it was and I still feel that is what it is today—that students are encouraged to take leadership roles and encouraged to bring ideas, encouraged to make things happen."

Stacey Berman ’05

Costume Designer for Theater, Film + Television

"The most successful people across the arts that I’ve ever worked with and ever met all have a grain of business person in them."

Sam O’Reilly ’09

Taking a passion for education from the classroom to the business world

Rebecca Roth Gullo ’95

The mind behind Blackbird Doughnuts and many other restaurants

"But, once you have an understanding of the service industry, you can do anything."

Milicent Armstrong ’05

Fashion designer, founder of Artemis Design Co.

"You just never know what is going to blossom into a career or passion. Remain curious and stay excited about things. Take chances and see if you can do it."

Jon Radtke ’84

Assistant Principal + Educational Innovator

"My sense when I was at Beaver was that I was valued for my uniqueness."

Jacob Mnookin ’97

Founder of Coney Island Prep

"I really thrived at Beaver, I sort of came into my own and learned to love learning."

Heather Benfield ’86

Environmental engineering on the Southern California coast

Reggie Brothers ’77

Decades on the forefront of science and technology

"I think the most important thing to learn at Beaver and in college and beyond is how to learn."

Carol Thomsen ’77

Early childhood educator, Founder and CEO of All Five

"If you’re telling children what to do, you’re not providing them with the opportunity to actually talk."

Juan Carlos Lombera ’95

A 20 year Global Marketing Career

“The pandemic will only make us stronger. Many will remember this time in a negative way, but it is important to always think positively. Everyone has learned a lot about the world and about themselves.”

Zach Herivaux ’15

Professional Soccer Player

“Beaver allowed me to dream. They never shut me down no matter how big my dreams were. They allowed me to shoot for the stars and be ambitious. Anything that I wanted to achieve, Beaver helped me push closer to it.”

Toph Tucker ’08

Multimedia Designer + Software Engineer

“Even the very best articles and graphs are gone after a couple days. The news media moves so quickly that so much gets forgotten.”

Taylor Pierce ’11

Advocating for diversity and inclusion in school and at work

“I chose Beaver because of their reputation as a “progressive teaching” school and the innovative methods they use in the classroom.”

Taylor Hayes ’12

From Senior Studio to a career in fashion

“Being a student from Beaver makes you look at things from a different lens and perspective.”

Sophia Tsakmaklis Teague ’06

Team Leader, New Mom + Trier of new things

“If the pandemic has shown us anything, it’s that things can change in a second.”

Seth Isaacson ’17

Following a passion for robotics

“Some of my favorite Beaver memories came from my senior calculus class with Mr. MacDonald. My experience in that class showed me what it’s like to do math at a higher level.”

Jacob Barrie ’14

Senior credit analyst focused on industry and transportation

"Having the chance to experience a wide range of classes and activities sets you up nicely once you graduate Beaver and college.”

Sarah Barrie ’09

Working on programs feeding students all year round

“Beaver really pushed me to think outside the box and take advantage of all the wonderful opportunities that were there. This all led to what we do and who we are today.”

Sara Marsh ’09

Building communities among Real Estate Professionals

“Coming from such a strong community, I love how I can always reconnect with Beaver, whether that be with fellow alumni, teachers, or mentors.”

Sam Sadtler ’07

Creative Technologist + Software Developer

“Now the major publications have strong digital presences, but at the time (2008), it was very uncertain whether photography and news had a future on the internet.”

Rachel Feldman ’15

Medical Scribe and future Med School Student

“I studied microbiology in college, so the pandemic has been an interesting time to learn more about what I studied and the importance of scientific research.”

Oliver Hunt ’11

Real Estate Startup Specialist

“Beaver is a place where the relationships you build are really strong. The tight-knit community is definitely something people miss when they go to college.”

Nelson de Witt ’00

Documentary Filmmaker, Author + Coach

"It's been such an honor, it's hard to put into words, to come back and to coach and to be a part of the school trying to give back what the school has given me."

Nat Brown ’15

Turning critical thinking into a career asset

“Prior to this pandemic, a colleague left for a new job and I was thrust into somewhat of a bigger position. However, being able to think critically and think on my feet was so helpful, which I can really attribute to Beaver.”

Nancy Sargent Howell ’58

Painter, Creator + Teacher

“Beaver gave me the encouragement for me to realize who I am.”

Morgan Warners ’04

Political Science Major turned Communications Expert

“Beaver is very good at helping each student identify authentic interests.”

Michelle Menken ’88

Defense Attorney + Criminal Justice Advocate

“I had come from what could have been a really disadvantaged situation, growing up with a single mom and not having a lot of resources, to being extremely fortunate enough to have had the incredible opportunity that Beaver provided education-wise and socially to push me forward.”

Micki Pierce ’16

Beaver Field Hockey Coach and Boston College Master's Student

"Being at Beaver, coming to the field every day to coach those kids in the fall, that helped me to get outside, stop watching the news, see these kids that are still showing up for school and field hockey and working really hard."

Melanie Weinraub ’89

Board chair, NYC Children's Theater + stay-at-home mom

"Beaver helped me develop the passion for theater that I took into what became my career."

Maya Pindyck ’96

Poet, Artist, Professor + Mom

"I think I do have Beaver to thank for the ways in which thinking and making across different disciplines was emphasized and really nurtured."

Raven Rankine ’12

Helps companies develop leaders and build resilience

“Throughout the pandemic, I’ve been able to help organizations and companies build their resilience by providing training and resources to help them get through difficult times."

Maya Fernandez ’12

Non-fiction Editor for heavy-hitting topics

“I was amazed at how well Beaver prepared me for college and was so thankful for Beaver once I got there.”

Max Campion ’09

Repeat Entrepreneur + Beaver Trustee

“I believe Beaver helped shape my entrepreneurial mindset. Rather than accepting things for the way they are, I always like to ask why and then think how I can make them better.”

Marlowe Greenberg ’89

Entrepreneur helping nonprofits that help people who need help

“Beaver’s encouragement to be involved in the world around you still sticks with me to this day”

Lizzie Millstein ’00

Sales Leader at a Global Digital Media Company

“Especially with the pandemic and my husband being a doctor, I have learned that you can’t always plan things out and you have to take it day-by-day.”

Leigh Isaacson D’Angelo ’07

Journalism Professor, Dating App Entrepreneur + NASA Spokesperson

“You don’t have a community unless it’s a healthy community so a lot of our messaging changed from encouraging people to go out and meet to making sure everyone was staying two leash lengths apart.”

Larry McKinney ’90

Beaver Student, Camp Counselor, Teacher

“In the spring, it was definitely hard not being at school and seeing everyone in the hallways and lunchroom. I really missed the social interactions that we’re so used to at school”

Kitty Sturgis ’58

Head of the Sherborn Elder Housing Committee

“I always get chills when I come up the drive and look up and see the cupola. That to me is very special.”

Josh Roy ’15

Computer Scientist making warehouses more efficient

“It is okay to ask for help. Especially in these times, some people may need extra support and it is 100% okay to ask for assistance.”

Josh Bloomberg ’03

Real Estate Agent to Property Owner

“At Beaver taking part in activities and group events is so crucial as you never know what you may end up liking and pursuing later down the road.”

Joanna Georgakas ’10

Med School Student, LGBTQ Advocate, Podcaster

“Beaver has a great alumni network and if ever someone wants to get in contact with alumni regarding a profession, there will always be someone in that field to assist them.”

Jezra Kaye ’69

Jazz Vocalist turned Speechwriter + Speaker Coach

“Because of the nature of the class I was in and times we were living through, it took me some time to really realize what an excellent education I had gotten at Beaver.”

Jessica Penzias ’08

Broadway Librettist + Playwright

“Instead of forcing productivity on a certain project, I am able to let my ideas flow naturally.”

Jeremy Levine ’05

Venture Capital Investor + Serial Entrepreneur

“Beaver helped form my entrepreneurial mindset and encouraged creativity.”

Jared Bellot ’08

Teaching a love of the arts to Chicago teens

“I loved teaching and Beaver had a tremendous impact on how I can be a non-traditional educator both in and out of the classroom.”

Jane Alexander ’57

Tony Award Winning Actress + Zoom Theater Rookie

“I’m a big fan of your generation. Your generation just gets it. You get it right in the gut! We do not even have to sell you all on keeping the planet whole and safe for your generation and your kids. You all are a very savvy generation. Once we get past this scourge, you are going to be gangbusters.”

Henry Hirshland ’15

Applying lessons from NuVu to the science of sleep

“Beaver’s experimental and unorthodox education style helped me do meaningful work both in and out of the classroom.”

Grace Bucking ’15

Hockey player, English major, Executive recruiter

“I've always tried to be grateful for the things I have. The pandemic has made me even more appreciative of the things I have no matter how big or small they may be.”

Gila Belsky Modell ’09

Teacher turned Retail Leader

“Beaver is the type of place that listens. If you want your voice to be heard, it will be heard.”

Fedna Jacquet ’06

Playwright, Screenwriter + Actress

“The outside world isn’t as caring or just as Beaver is. I would encourage Beaver students to figure out what is going on in the world and see what they can do about it.”

Erin Banco ’07

National Security Reporter + War Correspondent

“As a journalist, it can be frustrating to have to adapt to an environment where your story will matter one hour and not the next. However, that is just the environment that we work in.”

Dori Oskowitz ’97

Award-winning director working on his first feature film and his first child

"I've been very humbled by the pandemic and I'm learning a lot. There has been this understanding that permanence is not a given."

Devin Lewtan ’16

NYU student, product designer, student venture capitalist

“Finding things that do not pique your interest helps narrow down the focus to find your true passion.”

Danielle Alexandra ’75

Storyteller, Entrepreneur, Force of Nature

“I truly believe that talent wins out in the end, if you get the door open. Getting the door open is the secret, not the talent.”

Dani Lubin-Levy ’09

Nonprofit professional now attending business school

“The pandemic highlighted so many of the challenges that exist in our community in a way that you couldn't ignore them anymore.”

Dan Katz ’08

Fighting the stress epidemic + getting an MBA

“I am starting at Harvard Business School in the fall which means I’ll have to take a step back from Thrive Global, which will be difficult after seeing the company go from an idea to a scaled business. But this certainly won’t be my last start-up experience.”

Craig Goldstein ’91

Helping businesses scale up their operations

“The pandemic has been tough on medical school students because they haven’t been able to volunteer and get hands-on experiences, but a lot of students have taken it upon themselves to raise money to help those in need.”

Conor Savoy ’01

Advocate for more effective US foreign assistance

"Stay in touch with the people you're friends with because they're people that may be friends for life and there's no calculating how valuable that is for you over the course of your lifetime."

Clay Starr ’15

Fighting for Our Oceans + Our Climate

“There is no point in doing anything that makes you unhappy.”

Chris Morss ’58

Member of the Class of '58 by fraud

“I only discovered five-six years ago that my father's uncle, who lived in Chestnut Hill, had been one of the founders of Beaver, apparently.”

Cheryl Saenz ’79

A doctor, like she's always dreamed of being.

“Beaver’s the place that I learned that as long as I try I've got a really good chance of succeeding.”

Charles Van Dyke ’99

From Boston to France to New York to Oakland

“The sooner you can realize and understand what you need to do in order to be a productive member of society, the better."

Ceelie Beacham ’65

Former trustee and serial volunteer, now living on a farm

“The Annual Fund makes me so proud. We've got a lot of very generous parents and we have alums that are really stepping up now.”

Catherine Wei ’15

Quantitative analyst + creative storyteller

“It is important to be flexible to specific situations.”

Caitlin Fisher ’00

"Football Feminist" and former professional soccer player

“It has been tough in Berlin with the Covid-19 pandemic, as it has for"This whole pandemic, losing close friends, and dealing with the loss of in-person activities has further showed me how important gratitude and showing appreciation are on an everyday basis.”

Brett Siegal ’20

Boston University freshman, Co-Creator of BVR Alumni Voices

“The creative atmosphere at Beaver is amazing. Students are always collaborating and working on innovative projects and using technology in new ways.”

Brad Falchuck ’89

TV Writer, Producer + Director

“The thing about Beaver, whether it be when I went there in the 80s or now, is that there is a spirit, a particular energy. We all get it, but no one else gets it.”

Anna Frader Stefanovic ’00

Immigrants' Rights Advocate + Humanitarian

“All of these professional experiences I have had are rooted in the classroom and personal experiences at Beaver, which is unique.”

Andy Pool ’77

Corporate Communications Leader + Beaver Class Connector

“It is so important to treasure the friendships you make at Beaver, especially since it is a small school.”

Andrew Bordwin ’82

Photographer, Musician, and Martial Artist

"The pandemic is the great revealer. I feel like many people are emerging with a better understanding of the concentric circles of their life. A better understanding of themselves, a better understanding of their immediate family, a better understanding of their community and the nation."

Amye Kurson ’91

Golf + Tennis Entrepreneur

“One of the positives that has come out from this pandemic is that we have been able to change and adapt with the times and create masks for schools throughout the United States, Beaver being one of them.”

Amirah Mahdi ’11

Admissions director at a new-ish school in New York

This year has really taught me to slow down and take inventory of myself, whether that is health-wise, job-wise, community, or partnership with people.”

Amanda Shane ’07

Social Worker turned Social Entrepreneur

"I’ve learned that we take so much for granted like basic human needs and health. Covid has brought this to the forefront and we have had no choice but to adapt and make changes."

Ali Cooper ’09

A career in Sales + Pottery

“Having the chance to dabble in so many different activities at Beaver made it so special. Beaver is the liberal arts school of middle school and high school. I went to a liberal arts college because of my positive experiences at Beaver.”

Lexie Barza ’06

Psych Major, MBA, Product Manager

“Beaver gave me an incredible global perspective and taught me how to think through problems and solutions. Beaver taught me to question things and be curious.”

Alex Shigueta ’20

Tufts University freshman, Co-Creator of BVR Alumni Voices

"The use of technology at Beaver and the New Basics have been so helpful during my first semester of college."

Adam Buchbinder ’09

Using podcasts to support students' literacy skills

“I credit Beaver with providing me with intellectual capabilities like critical thinking along with social and political awareness.”

Thilo Henkes

Thilo Henkes ’87

From Student to Trustee

"Beaver’s focus on each student and finding the best teachers haven’t changed since the 80s. It’s been amazing watching the school adapt and evolve while sticking to its core values."

Tim Sebastian

Tim Sebastian ’16

Building a career in Broadway Theater

“The reason theater works is because everyone is in the same room together. We have tried to do shows on Zoom and have tried to record shows with no audience, but it does not have the same effect. And given these times, it is not just theater but live entertainment in general. It is up to us to adjust and find ways to make it available to everyone in a way that people will enjoy it.”

Neal Weinfield '79

Neal Weinfield ’79

Environmental Lawyer + Sculptor

“Looking back at Beaver, I realize that I have succeeded in life because it encouraged students to be passionate and self-sufficient in academic endeav"Beaver was also decades ahead of other schools in encouraging students to use what they learned in one discipline — for example, the creative thinking process in art, and the knowledge of material characteristics — as a tool for decision-making in another discipline.”

Liz Cobb

Liz Cobb ’08

Civil Engineer + Startup Veteran

“I’ve always cared about the environment, and I wanted to help people make good decisions.”

Susan Diamond '56

Susan Diamond ’56

Career journalist preparing to publish her second novel

“This taught me that you have to dare in life because you never know what could come out of it.”

Thompson Howell '81

Thompson Howell ’81

Television + Movie Voice Actor

“I like the anonymity of being a voice actor. You don’t have to look great going to work everyday, it’s just about how the voice sounds.”

Aaron Dezube

Aaron Dezube ’06

General Surgery Resident + Cardiothoracic Researcher

"One of the best things about the school is that you really don’t get forgotten..."

Phil Lipof '91

Phil Lipof ’91

Emmy-Award Winning Journalist

“Beaver is a much bigger part of my life than I think I've ever given it credit for. This interview took me down memory lane and made me appreciate all the amazing people at Beaver and the great memories I had throughout my time there.”

Dave Hoffman ’00

Leading community engagement and philanthropy for the Boston Celtics

"I saw the power of sports-based community work from my brother, who had cancer."

Josh Feldman '19

Josh Feldman ’19

Aviation student + Dunkin Donuts fan

“The teachers at Beaver don’t only care about how students are doing academically; they genuinely care about each student and are interested in students’ extracurricular activities and personal interests.”

Helen Weeks ’07

Montessori teacher helping kids find their own paths

“I do environmental education. So much of my teaching is, ‘Go outside, away from your screen!’ Now, I have to figure out how to do that virtually.”

Kelly Kretschmar ’08

Traveler, Creative Marketer, Brand Manager

“The pandemic has provided me with opportunities to learn more about myself and what I find important.”

John Kalnins '14

John Kalnins ’14

Making a Difference through Graphic Design

“The teachers at Beaver help students realize something about themselves. Beaver was the real spark for my passion for art and graphic design.”

Wayne Turner '95

Wayne Turner ’95

Former NBA player + NCAA coach

“It is important to look at the long run of things — sometimes we want specific events to happen right away but often it is better to wait and see how it turns out.”

100 Defining Stories