YAM Notes: September/October 2010

The top of the news this issue involves our globetrotting former class secretaries, Ed Greenberg and Tom Maxey, toting the Yale banner in unlikely places. Ed, a stalwart lo these many years in the Yale Alumni Chorus (hereinafter YAM), was one of 200 singers to tour Cuba in early July, performing in front of and with Cuban groups. For good measure, YAM  delivered  medical supplies, clothing and other items to various humanitarian organizations inside Cuba. Ed was told that YAM was the largest if not the largest group of people to go directly from Cuba to the United States.

Our class was also represented by Larry Krakoff, Al Atherton, Dennis Corcoran and Vertrees Hollingsworth, all with spouses. Ed is now the new president  of the chorus, a high if weighty honor.  As readers of this column will know, the group has been everywhere — Europe, the old Soviet Union, Mexico, South America. It has to be one of Yale’s most effective global ambassadors.

It is not, however, the only one. In 2008, the Association of Yale Alumni started a pilot program called the Yale Global Alumni Leadership Exchange, designed to share information with colleges abroad  about alumni relations,  but primarily to show foreign universities how to create  alumni associations and otherwise  foster durable relationships (financial and otherwise)   between institutions and their graduates — something many of them have not had to do because they are largely supported by governments. Yale, by contrast, has a remarkably robust alumni network. Of Yale’s  total alumni population of 130,000, more than 5,000 are involved in more than 400 different alumni associations.

 The first exchange took place in  Australia two years ago, and similar exchanges have since taken place between Yale, the University of Tokyo, and Cambridge.  This year’s World Alumni Leadership Conference took place in Istanbul, and among those  sharing their wisdom about improving alumni relations was Mr. Maxey. There was a one day conference in Istanbul, followed (I think) by visits to individual Turkish institutions, and I will ask Tom for a report at some later date.

As for our present secretary, Joe Staley is ( as we write this) preparing for our mini-reunion in Chicago in September, about which I hope  to have a full report in the YAM issue after this one.

Recording the deaths of valued classmates is never a happy task. But it also an opportunity to recognize and indeed celebrate  lives that have been well lived. Here are three:

 Carlton Palm, M.D. passed away in Tampa on Feb. 1. After Yale, he received his medical degree from NYU and served his internship and residency at Bellevue Hospital in  New York City, where he met Inge, his wife of 46 years. Carlton maintained a private practice in New Haven, served as director of he Pediatric Allergy Clinic at Yale-New Haven Hospital  and was an associate professor at the Yale School of Medicine. He lived in Norfolk, near the Yale summer school of music, and counted music (and horse racing)  among his many non-medical passions. He is survived by three sons and Inge, who can be reached at 16153 Craigend Place, Odessa, Fla., 33556.

Paul Lynch died in Honolulu in June. Paul was the Yale football captain our senior year. Born in Brookline, Ma,,  he earned a law degree from Harvard and shortly thereafter moved to Hawaii, where he became a well-known  attorney and a founding partner of a small law firm  with a varied practice in Honolulu. He leaves three children and his wife, Catherine. The services were private and his ashes were scattered in the Pacific. The last address I have for him is 1132 Bishop St., Honolulu, HI., 96813.

On Sunday, July 25, the Times carried a substantial obituary of Sid Holdernness, who died of a heart attack at home in Bellaire, Texas. A great-great-great grandson of Davy Crockett (which I did not know), Algernon Sidney Holderness Jr. was something of a swashbuckler himself, full of mischief and lively good humor and smart as a whip, Phi Beta Kappa at Yale, then Yale Law School, then clerk to Judge Swan on the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals, then partner for many years at Milbank, Tweed in NY,  and then, in recent years, at AndrewsKurth in Houston. A fine baritone, he sang in various  Glee Club reunion concerts and with the Blue Hill Troupe, the Gilbert and Sullivan society in New York. He loved  music, martinis, the law and Yale. His roommate, Chuck Banks, said he was looking forward to the Chicago mini-reunion in the fall.

He is survived by two daughters, to whom letters can be sent through his law firm, Andrews Kurth LLP, 4200 hase tower, 600 Travis, Houston, TX 77002. Sid will be missed– as will all the others we have lost, this year and in past.