from thehead of school

“If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy, don’t hesitate. Give in to it.” – Mary Oliver

Filling a year with ”joy”—The Bush School’s theme for the 2022-2023 school year—means recognizing the wonder and possibility all around us. This year, joy has seeped into all aspects of school life. It is present with our Kindergarten students frolicking at recess and then scurrying back to the classroom for story time. It is present in our Eighth Grade students as they plan for their E-week excursions, where they will explore new ideas, perspectives, and cultures here and abroad. And joy has been a central part of our seniors’ journey throughout the year as they have grown closer, more mature, and prepared to take with them the lessons learned at The Bush School to impact the world.
Joyous moments sometimes spring up spontaneously and without warning. Like when your favorite teachers suddenly break into a flash mob at Convocation, exposing a lack of rhythm along with a playful spirit. They happen organically over lunch with friends celebrating a victory, a good grade on an exam, or a personal triumph. They also happen in quiet moments when no one is watching, such as when you help a sibling with their homework, finish a poem that you’ve worked on for months, or step offstage and hear applause filling Benaroya. When our mindset and outlook focus on possibility, we turn the routine into the remarkable and the mundane into the majestic. 

The Bush School has helped students experience joy in learning for nearly one hundred years. Our educational approach of taking students’ natural curiosity for the world around them and building a curriculum that challenges them to question, observe, analyze, and demonstrate understanding is the hallmark of progressive education and the foundation for creating curious lifelong learners.

In the year leading up to our Centennial, we have continued to focus on experiential education, the cornerstone of a Bush education for generations. We have also set new strategic priorities that will help to ensure that all students feel seen and valued and have greater access to the curriculum. By building in DEI standards across all grades, and using a universal design framework to better reach all students, Bush is acknowledging that diversity, equity, and inclusion—including neurodiversity—is vital to building a strong community. We are taking this journey with our children’s future in mind. The steps that we take now will impact students well into Bush’s second century.

This year’s Experience magazine will amaze and surprise you for all that is happening at Bush. I encourage you to read about our students, faculty, programs, and community and experience all the ways  Bush has changed and remained the same. And, while reading, “if you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy, don’t hesitate. Give in to it.”  

Warm regards,

Percy L. Abram


Profile No. 1Scott Palmason ’00

“When I was doing what I was meant to be doing and found joy in it, I got more opportunities. Those little bits of joy, loving what I’m doing, jumping into shows or exciting new projects, or having fun singing—that’s what keeps me going.”

Profile No. 2 Sarah Potter '92

"As a mentor, I encourage the women I work with to give back too.  I remind them that no matter where you are in life, someone is trying to get to where you are right now."

Profile No. 3 Eric Serrano ’11

"I had the opportunity to make an impact in each one of my adopted communities, and now I have the opportunity to give back to the city where I was born. It is a full circle moment. I can  inspire the next first-generation of El Salvadoran Americans to do the same."


Below reflects The Bush School  Leaders, Faculty, and Staff from June 2022 and May 2023 that passed away. Please refer to the 2023 Experience Magazine for the full list of Bush alums that have passed away. Please accept our deepest apologies if someone is inadvertently missing from this list, and contact if you would like to share a memory or a treasured story of your friend or classmate.



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  • Hillary Hauser ’62

    Hillary Hauser ’62 published her book Dancing on Waves: A True Story of Finding Love & Redemption in the Ocean in August. Hillary is the Executive Director of Heal the Ocean, Santa Barbara.
    • Nicole Blom Heath ’75


List of 2 items.

  • Bobbi Long ’70

    Bobbi Long ’70 is a graphic design professor who just retired after thirty years. Bobbi currently resides in Monterey, CA and summers on Whidbey Island. Former classmates can reconnect with Bobbi at
  • Nicole Blom Heath ’75

    Nicole Blom Heath ’75, “After moving to New York City in 1986 to work for Esquire Magazine, my husband Larry and I are on the west coast again ( Santa Barbara) for the part of the winter that most often finds Connecticut in snow - or at least cold. Our oldest, Sydney, graduated from Claremont McKenna last spring, and is working in human rights in Mendoza, Argentina on a post graduate Fellowship. She’ll return in September to start a graduate program at Columbia. Our youngest, Charles, after completing his plebe year at the Naval Academy, has decided to continue his studies at the University of Connecticut with the hopes of attending law school. I continue to read voraciously, hike, row and get into NYC as much as possible. Larry and I are looking forward to spending a month in Amsterdam this coming fall.”
    • Ruth Weinberg, MD. ’83


List of 10 items.

  • Mark Stephenson ’81

    Mark Stephenson ’81, “Just hanging around in Central Oregon, biking in the summer and skiing during the winter! Can't believe I just turned 60 years old, how did that happen? Retired and loving the fact that my only responsibility is walking the dog twice a day!!”
  • Dave Dederer ’82 & Chris Ballew ’83

    Dave Dederer ’82 and Chris Ballew ’83, along with fellow Presidents of the United States of America band member Jason Finn aired live interviews on SXM radio this February.
  • Ruth Weinberg, MD. ’83

    Ruth Weinberg, MD. ’83 went on a scuba diving excursion while in Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands to visit the USS Kittiwake, an ex-U.S. Navy submarine that was sunk to create an artificial reef and scuba attraction.
  • Meeghan Holaway ’84

    Meeghan Holaway ’84 starred in "Spy for Spy" this past spring, a play told in six scenes, which were performed in random order each night of the show. Meeghan has also appeared in films and television shows including Holidate, About Fate, Criminal Minds, Switched at Birth, Grey’s Anatomy, The Bold and The Beautiful, Days of Our Lives, Scandal, and many others.
  • Steve Rosen ’84

    Steve Rosen ’84 joined Tiffany Lewis ’00 in offering Bush alums a birthday-month perk–now a complimentary pizza from Elemental and a cookie from Cookies With Tiffany–to alums of The Bush School.
  • Elisabeth Brinton (Skowronnek) ’85

    Elisabeth Brinton (Skowronnek) ’85, “I am pleased to announce my move to the portfolio stage of my career. With a huge thanks to Microsoft for bringing me in specifically to stand up and build the Sustainability Business to the point of profitability and global scale. This was the 24th innovation business that I have successfully built inside a global corporation.

    Now in addition to building Serenity Spring Farm, my international Show Jumping Sport Horse business with Olympian, Clark Montgomery, I will be serving on both public and private boards and continuing to help build sustainability businesses through partnerships with my many friends around the world. The mission continues, just in a more flexible form.”
  • Jen Simonds ’85

    Jen Simonds ’85 played the part of Queen Esther, the Shushan Queen in a community theater production of Mamma Mia Megillah this past winter.
  • Page Perey ’86

    Page Perey ’86, “I am currently in my fifth year working for the Issaquah School District as the Director of Elementary Special Programs. I will be returning to graduate school at the University of Washington in June to pursue a Masters degree in Child and Adolescent Psychology.”
  • Eric Young ’86

    Eric Young ’86 recently retired to Missoula, Montana with his family after serving for 20 years in Africa and Europe as a CIA operations officer, US Army instructor, and US diplomat.
  • Michael Lawson ’88

    Michael Lawson ’88 released his newest album, Captain Americana, this winter. Listen to it wherever you stream music!


List of 2 items.

  • Ben Weber ’90

    Ben Weber ’90 made’s list Funny Videos of the Month for a September 2022 episode of his five-season series of one-minute episodes. Funny Videos of September 2022: Most Hilarious Comedy Videos ( Over the years, Ben has also secured roles in shows like Sex and the City, Everwood, The Secret Life of the American Teenager, Twister, Manhunt, and several others.
  • Eliza Flug ’95

    Eliza Flug ’95 wrote Year of the Fox, a coming of age story filmed in Aspen and Washington, and starring Jane Adams, Sarah Jefferey, Jake Weber, and Balthazar Getty. The film premieres May 2023 at the SIFF and Cannes Film Festivals. 
    • Mateaa Redmond ’00


List of 11 items.

  • Bryson Hirai-Hadley ’00

    Bryson Hirai-Hadley ’00, “I recently self-published a novel titled, The Township, about the struggle for survival in the last remaining human settlement after the climate apocalypse." 
  • Tiffany Lewis ’00

    Tiffany Lewis ’00 was recently featured on both New Day Northwest and Studio 13 Live on Fox to demonstrate her Cookies With Tiffany cookie recipes.
  • Mateaa Redmond ’00

    Mateaa Redmond ’00 recently accepted a new role as Human Resources Operations Specialist at EssilorLuxottica.
  • Dwayne McClain ’01

    Dwayne McClain ’01 is now Deputy Court Administrator at Seattle Municipal Court.
  • Jesse Proudman ’03 & Karim Lessard ’89

    Jesse Proudman ’03 and Karim Lessard ’89 were featured panelists at this year’s BushTALKS Startups event.
  • Mandela Gardner ’04

    Mandela Gardner ’04, “This year I was excited to return to the stage after years away due to the pandemic! I appeared in the ensemble of HAIR the musical at Renton Civic Theater in May and June of 2022, and also played Armand in Once On This Island at the Tacoma Musical Playhouse in January and February of this year. Theater was my favorite activity at Bush and I am happy to be able to continue participating in community theater today.”
  • Alexander Douglas Smith ’08

    Alexander Douglas Smith ’08, “I have not updated The Bush School for many years. In 2014, I moved to Japan. I worked in a 400 year old sake brewery in Yamagata where I brewed sake and was in charge of exports for eight countries. In the past year, I moved to Nagasaki and am now working in the renewable energy sector. However, the biggest news I think which has happened this year, is that I am expecting my second child.”
  • Molly Fisher ’08

    Molly Fisher ’08 “I am the senior project engineer for cornerstone general contractors. Currently building schools! Just finished brand new Cougar Mountain middle school in Issaquah and currently working on Newport High School in Bellevue. It is fun building schools to create learning environments for generations to come!”
  • Michele Liang ’08

    Michele Liang ’08 was featured in Seattle Agent Magazine for her work as a Principal Broker in Seattle area real estate.
  • Isaac Blankensmith ’09

    Isaac Blankensmith ’09 is Co-Founder and Head of Design at Early Works, where he is currently working on a project called Asterisk Writer, a product designed to allow users to “Edit your writing like you edit a photo.”
  • Sophia Siao ’09

    Sophia Siao ’09 became engaged to her now-fiance, Philip, this winter.
    • Sophia Siao ’09

    • Amelia Keyser-Gibson ’14


List of 12 items.

  • Virginia Easthope ’10

    Virginia Easthope ’10 was recently featured in Shoutout LA Magazine for her work as an illustrator, printmaker, animator, and musician.
  • Jack Moga ’10

    Jack Moga ’10 became engaged to his fiancee this winter.
  • Hilary (Keyes) Moore ’10 & Tallis Moore ’10

    Hilary (Keyes) Moore ’10 and Tallis Moore ’10 welcomed a son, Stanley, this March. Tallis’s mother and Stanley’s grandmother, Cornelia Duryee ’77, is also an alum of The Bush School. Hilary is currently the Upper School Drama Teacher.
  • Charlie Wyman ’10

    Charlie Wyman ’10 is now a Technical Recruiter at Rippling.
  • Aaron Cohen ’12

    Aaron Cohen ’12 recently accepted a position as Software Engineer at Ellucian.
  • JoAnna (Frazier) McBride ’12

    JoAnna (Frazier) McBride ’12 “During senior year, we did senior projects for a few weeks in May before graduating (not sure if Bush still does that), and I chose to go to Boulder, Colorado to work at an equine assisted psychotherapy organization that served veterans and at-risk youth. I came back with the dream of someday opening up my own mental health practice using equine assisted psychotherapy with teens, and after going to graduate school, becoming fully licensed as a marriage and family therapist, and getting trained in trauma-focused equine assisted psychotherapy, my dream finally came true.

    Over the last six months, I have opened up my own private practice in Carnation called Calming Reins Counseling, and have started providing mental health therapy incorporating horses, and it has been so incredible to see the impact on clients! I have to thank Bush for providing me with the opportunity senior year of high school to explore an area of interest to me that has now blossomed into my professional specialization. My practice is called Calming Reins Counseling, and I practice in Carnation, Washington. 
  • Adriana Bucceri ’14

    Adriana Bucceri ’14 has accepted a position as Assistant Manager, Supplier Operations at Backroads. 
  • Amelia Keyser-Gibson ’14

    Amelia Keyser-Gibson ’14 qualified for the Olympic Marathon Trials in December, one of 35 women to run under the standard of 2:37:00. 
  • Megan Bang ’15

    Megan Bang ’15, “Hello! I am very excited about my job as a trend forecaster in London! I have recently been quoted in Dazed, Vogue UK and soon to be Elle UK around my expertise in the intersection of contemporary/historical culture and commerce. For the past year, part of my job is selecting key colors and product themes (two years in advance) as well as advising companies from Walmart to Chanel on how to be more inclusive and sustainable. Very fun!”
  • Libby Otto ’16

    Libby Otto ’16 is now Scheduler/Director of Operations at the U.S. House of Representatives, Washington D.C.
  • Ryan McLauchlan ’17

    Ryan McLauchlan ’17 was accepted to the University of Puget Sound Master of Education in Counseling Program.
  • Grace Farwell ’18

    Grace Farwell ’18, “I have exciting news to share! I have completed my BA in Linguistics and Cognitive Science at Carleton College, and graduated a term early. I recently presented my Senior Comprehensive Exercise, ‘Third Language Acquisition: Investigating the Roles of L2 Proficiency, The Typological Primacy Model, and The L2 Status Factor Model on German Vowel Perception L1 English, L2 French Individuals.’ Additionally, I have accepted with pride a nomination to join the Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Honor Society, for my undergraduate research work. I am looking forward to what comes next!”


List of 1 items.

  • Sosna Biniam ’22

    Sosna Biniam ’22 is now an SEO Career Scholar. She was also recently featured in the first-years section of Yale Alumni Magazine, and participated in the Goldman Sachs Black Possibilities Summit this winter.

The Bush SchoolSupport Us

Donor SpotlightWhen Values Align

Every year, The Bush School seeks corporate partners to support Financial Aid through a sponsorship at Celebrate Bush. This year, we received $52,000 in corporate sponsorship and our lead sponsor was Morgan Stanley’s Olympic Group. Kevin Baker, a current parent and Olympic Group partner, spent some time explaining why this sponsorship was important to his team and the industry. 

One of the things that attracted the Baker family to The Bush School was the school’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.  When Kevin and Julia arrived at the school in 2015, their oldest son was entering Kindergarten. The school was well on its way to diversifying all levels from leadership to students. This was an important value to their family and extended to Kevin’s role in wealth management. Bush’s mission and the Morgan Stanley Olympic Group’s values are aligned, which made sponsorship an easy choice for their team. 

“Bush has a super special place in my heart,” says Kevin, “it opened my eyes to what we can do with education to make an impact on the world. Bush is a catalyst for change in the space of DEI and the opportunity to support that in a meaningful way was really exciting for us. The Celebrate Bush cause is a beautiful fastball right down the middle for us.”

The Olympic Group was founded on a premise that clients would be better served by a diversified team. A 2021 report from John S. and Jay L. Knight Foundation confirmed what Kevin had experienced throughout his career: the presence of women and people of color was grossly underrepresented in the asset management industry. The report studies diversity in the U.S.-based asset management industry, using a sample representing $82.24 trillion USD in assets under management. Their analysis found that only 1.4% of total U.S.-based assets under management in the sample are managed by diverse-owned firms as of September 2021. 

Prior to joining Morgan Stanley, Kevin worked for a firm where he discovered that in the high net worth division of 640 advisors nationwide, he was one of 2 Black advisors and there were only 55 women. Kevin was committed to building a team with diverse representation within an organization that supported his values. The Olympic Group not only gives their clients a top tier service and a breadth of knowledge and perspective, but they are also committed to encouraging women and people of color to see a pathway for themselves in the industry. 

Kevin asserts that we would all benefit from seeking to align our values in all aspects of our life, including the management of our assets. He suggests considering hiring a high end, experienced, diverse team to manage all or some of your wealth. He believes, “It’s important that people know that extremely successful and highly diverse teams exist and provide a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and experience.” Finally, consider investing a portion of your assets in ways that align with your values. Along these lines, The Bush School was honored and grateful to be one of the Olympic Group’s investments. 

Event SpotlightAlumni Day 2022

by Tiffany Kirk, Alumni and Donor Relations Manager

Alums spanning the Classes of 1968 through 2022 returned to campus for Bush Alumni Day on Saturday, June 10. The former classmates gathered in the Commons and Benaroya Theater for an afternoon filled with laughter and reminiscing, campus tours, exploration of the Bush archive, a video memory booth, a caricature artist, and a sneak peek at Gracemont Alumni Hall’s nearly completed refresh.

Alumni Day also marked the launch of The Bush School’s Centennial Brick Campaign—an opportunity for alums to leave their mark on the campus as we enter our one hundredth year. Alums can purchase a brick of their own—with their own name and message, or as a tribute to another Bush community member—or they can decide to pair up and have a group brick installed. 

The Class of 1973 Celebrates Their Fiftieth Reunion

Led by alums Alden Garrett, Robin (Cram) Hall, Erin (Peterson) Donovan, Zimmie Caner, and Erica Hoff, the Class of 1973 celebrated their fiftieth reunion with a dinner hosted at Robin Hall’s Seattle home. Earlier in the day, the group joined the rest of the Bush alum community at Alumni Day, where they were recognized and celebrated.

Alum of the Class of 1973: Zimmie (Harriet) Caner, Beth (Elizabeth) Carey, Robin Cram Hall, Anne Erwin, Mimi Everett, Carol Foxworth Smith, Alden Garrett, Devra Hayes, Alexa Hemphill, Erica Hoff Christenson, Barb (Barbara) Hood, Jody (Joanne) Isaacson, Ann Love Glick*, Susan Mciinnis, Renee Mock Sidman, Cynthia Moore Dahlen, Julie Peck Boss, Erin Peterson Donovan, Heidi Rooks, Lisa Salisbury, Andy (Andrew) Smith, Ruth Steele Wilkens*, Jane Thomas Eberhardt, Julie Udhus Walter, Jim (James) Vaupell, Lynn Whittaker Goodwin, Paula Wolf, and Katrina Wootton*.
Experience the full 2023 edition of Experience by clicking here for more articles, photos and content.
Please contact with any corrections, errors or updates.
The Bush School is an independent, coeducational day school located in Seattle, WA enrolling 715 students in grades K–12. The mission of The Bush School is to spark in students of diverse backgrounds and talents a passion for learning, accomplishment, and contribution to their communities.

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