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Alumnae Relations
Hollins University
P.O. Box 9629
Roanoke, VA 24020-1629
(540) 362-6498

Reunion 2009 Recap: May 29-31, 2009

Women Who Are Going Places Start At Hollins. And Returned for Reunion 2009!

Reunion 2009



Exhibit and Gallery Talk

Mary Page Evans '59Mary Page Evans '59 gave a talk and slideshow of her artwork. Her paintings are on display in the Eleanor D. Wilson Museum. Evans was presented with the Betsy Green Grubbs Award at reunion, for significant achievement in the arts.




The 50th Anniversary of the Riding Program in the Guy  Burkholder Era

Riding programAlumnae riders enjoyed dinner in the riding ring, cocktails, and time to visit riding program staff and the award-winning horses. Burkholder was posthumously inducted into the Hollins Athletic Hall of Fame (see below for other inductees).




Behind the Doors: A Backstage Look at the Arts at Hollins and in Roanoke

Amy MoorefieldAmy Moorefield, director of the Eleanor D. Wilson Museum, led a VIP tour of the arts in Roanoke. The journey began at Hollins' Wilson Museum in the Wetherill Visual Arts Center and continued into downtown Roanoke with stops at:

        • Downtown Roanoke's new Taubman Museum of Art with greeting and tour by Deputy Director of Exhibitions David Brown and incoming Board Chair Dr. Paul Franz
        • Virginia Museum of Transportation with Executive Director Bev Fitzpatrick
        • Roanoke Times printing press with Publisher Debbie Meade
        • Betty Branch '79, sculptor, studio tour and reception with the artist


Women Who’ve Gone Places

Eight alumnae from a variety of backgrounds shared their stories of how Hollins shaped their success. The panelists were:

  • Mildred Persinger '39, co-founder of the International Women's Tribune Center, a communication and training center for women in developing countries, and World YWCA representative to the United Nations for 30 years
  • Agnes Reid Jones Jenny '44, physical therapist and lifetime volunteer, including helping orphans escape Saigon
  • Gene Gill '54, retired director of general services for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
  • Ellen Malcolm '69, founder of EMILY's List
  • Linda Koch Lorimer '74, former president of Randolph-Macon Woman’s College and current vice president and secretary of Yale University
  • Judy Morrill '84, managing director of Highmount Capital LLC in New York
  • Melissa Hidrobo '99, leather goods manager for Louis Vuitton;
  • Elizabeth Burgin '04, an attorney with Woods Rogers PLC in Roanoke


The 35th Anniversary of Hollins Abroad-London

Alumnae enjoyed a British high tea on Saturday afternoon and updates on the program today from President Gray.


Distinguished Alumnae Award

Mildred Emory Persinger '39, Florence Fowler Peacock '59, Elizabeth Fentress Goodwin '69, Ellen Reighley Malcolm '69, Charlotte Conant Fox '79

  • The Distinguished Alumnae Award honors individual alumnae who have brought distinction to themselves and to Hollins through broad and inspiring personal or career achievements; local, national or international volunteer service; or significant contributions to society.


Distinguished Young Alumna Award – Inaugural Recipient

Veronica Votypka '99

  • This brand new honor was established in 2009 by the Board of Trustees. The Distinguished Young Alumna Award recognizes a member of the 5th, 10th, or 15th Reunion Year Class whose accomplishments since graduation have been extraordinary.


Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees

  • Ann Davant Crehore '84 – soccer and lacrosse
  • Nancy Novak Curran '79 – field hockey
  • Sandra Garrison Hodges '79 – basketball and lacrosse
  • Alice-Cole Moss Reynolds '04, tennis and field hockey
  • Margaret Grill Tickner '79 – field hockey and lacrosse
  • Guy Burkholder – director of the riding program, 1959-1985 (posthumous)
  • Previous inductees

Pat Thomas Bain '49 Award

The Bain Award is presented at reunion to the individual or group whose efforts have achieved a significant increase in Hollins Fund participation.

Suzy Mink '74

Suzy is the embodiment of a dynamic Hollins alumna. Her many efforts for Hollins include serving as an alumnae board member, career advisor and panelist, sponsoring student interns, and bringing her fund raising know-how to her fabulous work as a reunion gift chair for many years. She inspires her classmates – by her own example, and by cheerful motivation – to give back to this place that she holds dear. In fact, she is a moving advertisement for her alma mater – with her D.C. license plate personalized to say “HOLLINS!” We owe her a million thanks for all that she does for her class and for Hollins.


Betsy Green Grubbs '72 Award

Named in honor of former Alumnae Relations Director and member of the class of 1972, Betsy Green Grubbs, the award is presented to a Hollins alumna or Hollins community member who has made a significant contribution in the arts.

Mary Page Evans '59

Mary Page is described by her former mentor, Gene Davis, as “a hallelujah painter,” whose “lyrical renditions of flowers and landscapes are hymns of unadulterated joy.”

Her work has been exhibited at the the Delaware Art Museum, the Philadelphia Art Alliance, and the Virginia Museum, among others. Mary Page has received three fellowships from the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and was selected by the National Museum of Women in the Arts for the Seville World Expo in 1992. Her work was chosen in 1993 to appear in Spasso House, the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.

Mary Page has been a loyal supporter of Hollins, from exhibiting her artwork on campus, to her generous contributions to the music and art programs, and even donating her art to Hollins’ permanent collection.

An exhibition of her work was on display in the Eleanor D. Wilson Museum during reunion.


The Rath Award

The Rath Award is given annually to an alumna or alumnae whose participation in the life of Hollins has been extraordinary and whose personal investment of time and effort in the institution over the years represents the very best of the Hollins spirit.

Polly Barksdale Garbee '59

Polly has worked for years leading up to her landmark 50th reunion – keeping classmates connected and involved in supporting Hollins. As a consistent and generous Hollins Fund donor herself, she sets the bar high for her classmates and other alumnae as they consider their support for Hollins. In addition to her annual fund support, Polly established the Judge Alfred Dickinson Barksdale Memorial Scholarship Fund in honor of her father, a former Hollins trustee who served for many years. She is also a supporter of the Stuart Degginger Scholarship and she spearheaded fundraising for the Marguerite Prinet Abroad Endowment and the Class of 1959 Memorial Scholarship. She understands how vital scholarships are to level the playing field for qualified students to be able to attend Hollins. Polly’s commitment to Hollins must be in her blood. In addition to her father’s service on the board, three of Polly’s aunts, six cousins, and a niece all attended Hollins. Through her connections with family and friends she may be only a few degrees away from every Hollins alumna around the world. Her dedication and follow-through inspire her classmates to give back to Hollins with love. Thank you, Polly, for making your 50th Reunion year a GREAT one for Hollins!

Linda Koch Lorimer '74

Linda’s extraordinary energy and tremendous loyalty to Hollins know no bounds. She has said she is “a real believer in the liberal arts as lifelong learning,” and she sets the bar high for all Hollins women to be active learners and leaders. Linda was valedictorian of her class at Hollins, and received her law degree from Yale. After a short stint on Wall Street, Linda returned to Yale to become the youngest associate provost in the school’s history. Linda continued to break records when she became the youngest and the first female president of Randolph-Macon Woman's College. Since 1993 she has been Vice President and Secretary of Yale University, leading the school’s major strategic initiatives. She has served Hollins with great insight as a Trustee for 12 years, chairing the academic affairs committee and recruiting new trustees to the fold. She has been a commencement speaker and flown the flag high as a Reunion Gift Chair. She continues to make significant financial commitments to Hollins, transforming the physical as well as the intangible landscape of her alma mater. Linda does everything in her power to advance the status of women and of Hollins. As co-chair of our Campaign for Women Who Are Going Places, she works tirelessly to ensure that Hollins continues to thrive for the next generation of lifelong learners.

Class Award Winners

> Reunion Class Giving

The Tinker Mountain Award

  • Class of 1974 with $201,075
  • Given to the class that raises the largest total gift for the Hollins Fund.  


The Catherine Orgill West ’51 Award

  • Class of 1959 with 60%
  • Honors the class with the highest participation in giving to the Hollins Fund.    
  • The Class of '59 also raised $74,252 in gifts and pledges for the Class of 1959 Memorial Scholarship Fund. The impetus for this fund came from the bequest of a classmate, Desha Graves Rosborough. Reunion Gift Chair Polly Barksdale Garbee and Phyllis Brooks worked hard with their class on behalf of the fund.

The Hollins Rock Award

  • Class of 1999 with 17%
  • Awarded to the class among the ten most recent classes with the highest Hollins Fund participation.     



Read news and view photos from other reunions: