Winter 2008: Alumni Ink

Drifting Toward Love

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Journalist and author Kai Wright 96C explores a vulnerable, rough-edged subculture in Drifting Toward Love: Black, Brown, Gay, and Coming of Age on the Streets of New York (Beacon Press, 2008). Through intimate, poignant portraits of a handful of real young men, Wright confronts a range of hotbutton social issues against a broader backdrop embellished by his years of experience reporting on sex, race, and health. Wright’s work has appeared in Essence, Mother Jones, and the Village Voice; he also is publications editor for the Black AIDS Institute and author of two previous books on African American history.

Building an Intentional School Culture

Educators and parents alike may glean wisdom from a new book by David Fulton 91C and Charles Elbot, Building an Intentional School Culture (Corwin Press, 2007). Based on lessons from the authors’ work in improving school culture for more than sixty schools across the country, the book is a how-to guide for school administrators and teachers interested in fostering an environment that emphasizes character and independence. Fulton has a PhD in foundations of education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has worked in education at many levels, including teaching, working for the State Department of Education in Wisconsin, and serving the Denver Public Schools Office of Character and School Culture. He is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Denver School of Education.

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Tim and Sally’s Vegetable Garden

A new children’s book by Grady Thrasher 68L introduces young readers to the joys of gardening. Written in rhyming verse, Tim and Sally’s Vegetable Garden (Hill Street Press, 2007) follows two youngsters as they plan and tend their own plot, inviting readers to share in both the process involved and the satisfaction gained from growing fresh food. Thrasher is a retired lawyer and native Georgian who enjoys tending his own garden on his farm in Watkinsville. His original verse is accompanied by the illustrations of Elaine Hearn Rabon, also a Georgia native.

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Office Upstairs: A Doctor’s Journey

Charles H. Banov 51C reflects on a half-century as a physician, husband, and father in his memoir Office Upstairs: A Doctor’s Journey (History Press, 2007). From growing up Jewish in South Carolina to opening the first doctor’s office in a small Texas town, Banov recounts his experiences with humor and warmth. An innovative allergist, Banov also served as president of the American College of Allergy and has lectured on allergies around the world.

Dr. Henry R. Porter: The Surgeon Who Survived Little Bighorn

One of the few white survivors of the brutal battle of Little Bighorn is the subject of a new book by L. G. Walker Jr. 63R. Dr. Henry R. Porter: The Surgeon Who Survived Little Bighorn (McFarland Press, 2007) tells the story of Porter, an army contract surgeon who became an ambitious frontier settler and doctor and later traveled the world before dying in India. Walker, a retired surgeon and professor of medicine, drew on Porter’s writings to reconstruct this vivid historical biography.

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Hot Times During the Cold War

As a teenager, Scott W. Hawley 06B lived from 1985 to 1988 on a military base in West Germany while his father served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force. His recent book, Hot Times During the Cold War: An American Comes of Age in West Germany (iUniverse, 2007), is a poetic tribute to the irony of teenage angst and innocence flourishing in the shadow of the Cold War. The book of verse is complemented by a CD by Hawley’s band, L.O.S.T., which he helped start in Frankfurt some twenty years ago. Hawley also is the author of Frohes Wandern and coauthor of Museums of Atlanta.

Restored Christianity

Donna Lane 79C and her son, Hayden Lane, take on the modern church in Restored Christianity, a call for a return to the foundational teachings of Jesus Christ. The authors use the letters of Paul in their analysis, ultimately advocating for an individual, personal relationship with God. For more information about the book, visit

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Surviving Illness and Death: Suggestions for Medicine and Ministry

In Surviving Illness and Death: Suggestions for Medicine and Ministry (Xulon Press, 2007), Frances Garrett Baumgardner 51N offers a fresh perspective for medical professionals and religious leaders who care for sick people and their families. Baumgardner spent fifty years as a minister’s wife dealing with crises including the illness and death of her husband, the illness of her daughter, and her own health problems. “This book will better equip the religious and medical community to support families in crisis and give people experiencing illness and death in their family permission to express their emotions,” Baumgardner says. “This is a topic that is rarely dealt with.”

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Winter 2008

Of Note