“Get Connected, Stay Connected”– the tagline often used for the SKS Alumni Relations Program– came to life this year at the 2021 Virtual Reunion. On Saturday, June 12, over 100 alumni and past faculty connected via Zoom to celebrate some of the School’s most important traditions which are part of the common thread that binds SKS Alumni together this and every year: the Memorial Rock Ceremony, the Alumni Association Annual Meeting, the Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremony honoring former star athletes, and the Margaret Clark Faculty Excellence Award recognizing a past faculty member for their dedication and service.
The day began with a virtual presentation of the traditional Memorial Rock Ceremony where a group of SKS Alumni remembered and reflected on members of the Storm King family who have passed. Later that morning, alumni listened to the strategic progress made by the School at the SKS Alumni Association Annual Meeting and paid tribute to outgoing Alumni Council President, Scott Cantor ’73. Council members, alumni, administrators, and friends presented him with an SKS academic chair and a tribute video as he handed his gavel to the incoming SKS Alumni Council President Steve Bluth ’83. As one participant put it, “There is no better example of Scott’s leadership for our Alumni; a model for all others to follow.”
Following the Annual Meeting, events transitioned to the virtual SKS Alumni Awards ceremony where alumni, friends, and family celebrated the induction of Shauntiece Puddin’ Hunt ’01 and former faculty member and coach, Steve Mandell to the SKS Sports Hall of Fame. Former SKS colleague, Robert Kugler, introduced Steve Mandell, remarking that he was a wonderful role model, father, and all around person to SKS students. Kristen Janiak Goggin acknowledgments of Puddin’s achievements were followed by Puddin’s message of gratitude for all Storm King has meant to her throughout her life.
Equally moving was the recognition of this year’s Margaret Clark Faculty Excellence award recipient, William ‘Bill’ Cesario, who had a deep and meaningful impact on SKS students during his tenure. This year’s presenter, David Scheiner ’80, commented that “this recognition was long overdue…to the best friend Storm King Students ever had.”
As individual classes connected via Zoom throughout the afternoon, the fun continued into the evening with a trivial Kahoot! game created by Alumni Council member Lisa Veyka ’83. Congratulations go to Rick Reynolds ’71, Judy Romano ’79, and Cody Siccardi ’07, who took top honors in this year’s and perhaps ongoing annual SKS Kahoot Challenge.
While the events of this past year prevented SKS Alumni from gathering on the Mountain, the success of this year’s Virtual Reunion proves that Storm King’s network of alumni from all over the world can connect and stay connected both in-person and virtually; and serves as a testament to their ongoing friendships and shared experiences which are the heart of the School. Until next year, as we gather once again on the Mountain!