Our family’s affiliation with Putney goes back to 1957. I (Judy) attended the summer program which in those days was very much an extension of The Putney School. My most vivid memories are of Sing propelled by exuberant singers, regular work in the gardens, the fire brigade, hefting buckets of water, one person to the next, across campus to practice for emergencies and rambunctious weekend line and square dances.
‘Although from a New Jersey suburban town, I loved the camaraderie and pace of farm work, the intensity of the music, intellectual spirit and diversity of thought. This greatly impacted later life experiences, including owning and operating a dairy farm. My early affiliation led to my son, Evan’s enrollment and graduation in 1983, as well as my granddaughter Sarah’s graduation in 2016 and, ultimately, my granddaughter Alta’s in 2022.
We have been long term contributors to Putney. Our first major gift in the ‘80s was money for a manure spreader. We happily posed for a picture at the barn, not because we wanted personal recognition but to send the message that even traditional activities require support for Putney’s infrastructure. Working with many major arts and community organizations over the years, we have compared Putney’s approach to fundraising as “laid back to a fault.” Frankly, it lacked a sense of urgency that characterizes successful fundraising initiatives. So we proposed our challenge grant.
We have always looked at the school as a gem in the rough. But there comes a point when there is too much rough! With the dorms pretty much unchanged since Judy’s stay in the ‘50s we fervently support efforts to renew the dorms with 21st century thoughtfulness for students and faculty, including faculty families who provide important texture and continuity.