An independent K-12 school on a beautiful wooded campus, 3 miles from Washington, DC

LlamaNotes

February 2022

The Llama Notes alumni e-newsletter is filled with stories, news, information,
and resources to support our community. Our goal is to keep alumni informed and foster
a meaningful lifelong connection between alumni and The Potomac School.
If you have an idea or comments, please contact Laura Miller, director of alumni relations.

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHTS

Finding Passion and Purpose

When Hamilton Brooks ‘18 reads about history and the remarkable strides people have made, it brings him a degree of hope; with so much uncertainty in life, Hamilton wants to spread that hope to others. The Potomac alum puts his intentions into action and encourages others to do the same.

Last spring, as a junior at NYU, Hamilton landed the internship of his dreams, working for the ACLU’s national political advocacy and systemic equality departments. In that role, he supported campaigns focused on “issues that are outside of what we conventionally think of in connection with civil rights,” such as equal access to broadband, student debt, and discriminatory government practices toward small and Black-owned farms. But perhaps the most impactful focus of his internship was voting rights. What Hamilton learned at the ACLU under the mentorship of Rakim Brooks, former ACLU senior campaign strategist and now President of the Alliance for Justice, solidified his passion and purpose. Read more

Finding Her Voice

Even if you didn’t attend Potomac at the same time she did, Samantha Dockser ‘12 may look familiar. Perhaps you saw her in the world-premiere musical Las Polacas: The Jewish Girls of Buenos Aires at DC’s GALA Hispanic Theatre. Maybe you caught her in Mindy Kaling’s HBO series Sex Lives of College Girls. Or perhaps you are one of the 250,000 followers who laugh along to Samantha’s TikTok videos. The past two years have been challenging for the entertainment industry, but Samantha has carved a niche for herself, living as a working actor and voiceover artist in Los Angeles.

We recently met with her over Zoom for a wide-ranging conversation about what she does, how she got there, and where she’s going next. Read more

Panther Pride Alumni Network

“It’s fascinating to see where life takes Potomac alumni,” says Todd Langstaff ‘08. “We wondered what it might look like to create a community of specifically LGBTQ+ alumni to share those stories.”

In late 2020, a group of Potomac alumni – including Todd, Passion Rutledge ‘06, and Lane Ebrill ‘07 – began laying the foundation for Potomac’s first alumni affinity group, the Panther Pride Alumni (PPA) Network. The group launched in June 2021.

The Network’s mission involves fostering connections within the LGBTQ+ Potomac alumni community to cultivate a space for an inclusive, safe, and supportive social and professional network. “Ultimately, it’s for alumni with shared experiences and the common Potomac background to connect (or reconnect) and hopefully find something personal and/or professional,” Todd notes. Read more

The Blair Society

This fall saw the successful launch of The Blair Society, a leadership group composed of alumni who focus on soliciting and stewarding their own portfolios of alumni prospects on behalf of the Potomac Fund. Due to the efforts of its 15 inaugural members, alumni giving and participation levels were higher than last year as of December 31, 2021.

We are grateful to our Blair Society team: John Arundel ‘81, Skip Calvert ‘01, Carter Clarke ‘11, Meredith Murphy Craven ‘02, Stephanie deSibour ‘60, Ben Jordan-Downs ‘95, Caroline Kehoe ‘17, Andrew Kilberg ‘06, Mike Kirkman ‘03, Robert McDowell ‘78, Chris McNerney ‘04, Stuart Price ‘09, Philip Saba ‘13, Sarah Murphy Starr ‘99, and Andrew Warin ‘03.

If you interested in getting involved, please email Laura Bennett, director of annual giving.

Please consider making a gift to the Potomac Fund today.

SEND US YOUR NEWS

Submit your Class Notes
for our spring issue of The Term 
by 
March 1. 

Have you started a new job, taken up a hobby, reconnected with Potomac friends? We'd love to hear about it!

SUBMIT YOUR NOTE TODAY: Email your note to your Class Correspondent or to term@potomacschool.org.

SUBMIT YOUR PHOTOGRAPH: A picture is worth a thousand words. Please caption your photo with names, date, location, and anything else pertinent. For best reproduction, email photos at a high resolution.

The AGC Needs You!

SEEKING NOMINATIONS

The Alumni Governing Council (AGC) Nominations Committee is seeking candidates to serve as council members for the upcoming term. The mission of the Alumni Association is to foster a sense of community among Potomac School alumni and to cultivate relationships with other members of the community, including current students, current and past teachers and administrators, and current and past parents.

We welcome the recommendations of the Potomac community as we seek to fill these important leadership positions. Please contact Laura Miller, director of alumni relations, if you are interested or would like to recommend a fellow alum. 

Past Issues

Read the last issue of Llama Notes here.

Upcoming Events

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Austin
April 20, 2022

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 April 21, 2022

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 April 30, 2022

NYC
May 19, 2022

On Campus

Who’s at the Helm of
Potomac’s Squash Success?

Potomac’s varsity squash teams participated in the U.S. High School Team Squash Championships in Philadelphia the weekend if February 18. They faced 11 high school squash leagues from around the country, representing more than 300 schools. Squash is an international sport, played by millions in over 185 countries, and many players in the high school leagues come from abroad. Potomac’s squash teams similarly reflect the international diversity of our community; we have players whose national backgrounds span the globe.

Given that context, you may ask, “Who’s at the helm of Potomac’s squash success?” Fittingly, the answer is two very accomplished international coaches who understand the game from the inside out, having excelled in their own competitive careers. Read more

 

Come Join Your Classmates!

Potomac’s Reunion Weekend is October 21-22, and you’re invited! Our robust program will include some of your favorites, such as the Friday Night Cocktail Party, campus tour, trail walk, and more. Plus, you will have the opportunity to enjoy all the fun of Potomac’s Fall Frolics carnival and cheer for our athletes during their Homecoming games.

This year, there will be even more members of the Potomac family on campus to reunite with! We honor the classes of 1937, 1942, 1947, 1952, 1957, 1962, 1967, 1972, 1977, 1982, 1992, 1997, 2002, 2007, 2012, and 2017. Not a milestone year? We still want you to join the celebration! All alumni are welcome.

Interested in volunteering for the Reunion Committee? Contact Laura Miller, director of alumni relations, at lmiller@potomacschool.org or (703) 749-6356.

 

Alumni Activities

Creative Thinking | Creative Writing
Creative Discussion

On January 30, a group of alumni gathered for a virtual creative writing workshop with professor, poet, and author Charlotte Matthews ‘81.

 

The interactive writing and listening workshop celebrated the Potomac experience, with Charlotte reflecting on the Potomac values of hard work and service, kindness, and perseverance. She read from her memoir, which includes memories about well-loved Potomac figures Imogen Rose, Bea Lindsten, Bill Doswell, and bus driver Joe Early. 

Attendees were asked to bring something to write on because, in true Potomac fashion, active participation was sought from all. During the writing portion of the program, Charlotte offered prompts to spark everyones’ memories. The workshop concluded with voluntary sharing, culminating in a group poem composed of participants’ words. 

If you'd like to share some of your individual work please email alumni@potomacschool.org.

Charlotte Matthews’ published works include a memoir, Comes with Furniture and People, which was an Indie Awards finalist in the category of women’s issues; a novel, The Collapsible Mannequin; and three poetry collections: Still Enough to Be DreamingGreen Stars, and Whistle What Can’t Be Said. She is an associate professor at The University of Virginia.

Lunchtime Conversations with Dr. Rachlin

In early February, the Upper School welcomed Dr. Evan Rachlin for an informative Lunchtime Conversation. Dr. Rachlin is currently the managing director of Blackstone Life Sciences; he previously served as head of strategy at Moderna, where he led the development of the company’s annual long-range plan and helped formulate portfolio strategy. Dr. Rachlin, who spoke with our students and faculty about the development of the COVID vaccine and the challenges of technology in health, is the husband of Potomac alum Alexa Rubenstein Rachlin 03.

Have You Linkedin with Potomac?

Looking to connect with Potomac alumni, find a job, secure an internship, or keep up-to-date on a variety of topics? Then join The Potomac School Alumni Professional Networking LinkedIn group. This group allows current and future alumni an opportunity to leverage the full potential of Potomac’s global community through meaningful connections and discussions via a professional network.  

We have also recently launched The Potomac School Alumni Association Real Estate Professional Group (PSRE) – a group of Potomac alumni working or doing business in the real estate industry. PSRE plans to meet throughout the year for professionally relevant programs and to connect our Potomac community. If you are interested in getting more involved or want to host an event (virtually or in-person) please contact Kevin Havermann ‘14, Stephen Garibaldi ‘13, or Gabriel Miller ‘16

Both groups are forums to help members connect, share industry information, and post job/internship opportunities. If you are interested in launching other professional industry affinity groups, please email Laura Miller at lmiller@potomacschool.org.