Alice Cowie (Class of 2014)
Alice participated in Knowledge Bowl, dance and art in high school at West Sound Academy. She plans to study tourism and linguistics at Linfield University in McMinnville, Oregon near Portland. Her favorite memories from The Island School center around the Cultural Study.
Alice Gutsche-Smith (Class of 2014)
Alice is a rock climber, competing at the regional and divisional levels, and a youth climbing instructor. In addition, Alice is a member of both Earth Service Corps and National Honor Society at Bainbridge High School. She was nominated for a BISD Strong Award and received honorable mention in the state-wide Scholastic Art Award. Alice is an active member of Winslow Cohousing, organizes an annual neighborhood bike-a-thon that has raised more than $15,000 for local non-profits and serves as a volunteer for Helpline House, Rotary Auction, Hyla Middle School and The Island School. Alice enjoys swimming in Puget Sound, the lakes of the Northwest, jumping off docks, baking and art. Alice plans to take a gap year to focus on training for rock climbing and outdoor leadership programs before attending college in the fall of 2022. Alice remembers the great adventure of sailing on the Carlin in 5th grade with her class. She loved Cultural Study and she loves The Island School!
Lucy Hall-Lane (Class of 2014)
Lucy plays guitar and enjoyed singing in the school band at West Sound Academy. She also rowed for Bainbridge High School and explored the hobby of photography. Lucy plans to attend the University of Washington in the fall. Her favorite Island School memories include playing flashlight tag in the dark at Cannon Beach on the fifth grade trip and performing in all the plays, including Paved with Gold.
Tyler Lanning (Class of 2014)
At Kingston High School, Tyler competed at the state level for his swim team. He also earned his associate’s degree through Running Start. Tyler plans to major in mechanical engineering at Washington State University in Pullman. His favorite Island School memories center around Cultural Study, specifically decorating the classroom and playing fun games.
Haven Low (Class of 2014)
Haven participated on the varsity equestrian team for all four years of high school at the Loomis Chaffee School in Maine, competing up and down the East Coast. She also started an independent portrait photography business, providing sessions for families, kids, horses, and even weddings. Her photography interest included an independent study with multiple gallery shows. Haven enjoys writing creatively and was recognized in the top 16 out of 8,000 entries for the New York Times Personal Essay Contest in 2020. Haven will attend Colby College in Waterville, Maine. She plans to minor in Human Development and perhaps Creative Writing. For the summer of 2021, Haven will continue her work as a camp counselor for a camp focused on girls’ empowerment with a special week for gender expansive youth. Haven’s favorite memories from The Island School are all the overnight trips, especially going down to the Oregon coast.
Ethan Macey-Cushman (Class of 2014)
At Ingraham High School in Seattle, Ethan successfully led a Junior State of America chapter and served as Chief of Staff for the Pacific Northwest. For two years he worked as a Museum Youth Advisor at the Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI). He also spent four years in his school’s theater program, eventually assistant directing "Twelfth Night.” Ethan plans to pursue a double major in Economics and Homeland Security at Tulane University in New Orleans. His favorite memories from The Island School include getting the wind knocked out of him when he tried to climb one of the trees in mittens, and the 5th grade power trip.
Dora Makosky (Class of 2014)
At Bainbridge High School, Dora played ultimate frisbee all four years in the winter and spring and was a team captain junior and senior years. She also coached 5th-8th grade ultimate frisbee in the fall each year. During the pandemic shutdown, Dora founded, edited and contributed to a literary magazine for 13-19-year-olds. In addition, Dora worked to educate, advocate, and fundraise to help support global healthcare equity through the BHS Global Health Club, a chapter of Partners In Health. She also serves as a student board member for the Bainbridge Ometepe Sister Islands Association. Dora will attend Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts in the fall. Her favorite Island School memories revolve around the Cultural Study, which, she said, “was always really fun!”
Wyatt Rosenthal (Class of 2014)
Wyatt enjoyed making various films during his high school career at Idyllwild Arts Academy in California. In the fall of 2021 he will attend Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle.
Casey Simonson (Class of 2014)
Casey participated in three sports at North Kitsap High School - football, basketball and track. He also enjoys tinkering with cars. Casey will attend Washington State University in Pullman. His favorite Island School memories center around frisbee and kickball at recess.
Nicholas Soboleski (Class of 2014)
Nicholas spent four years at North Kitsap High School as a varsity gymnast. He also attended Olympic College through the Running Start program, earning placement on the President’s List six times (3.9 GPA or higher) and earned his Associate Degree. Nicholas has worked at Mora Iced Creamery for two years. He plans to major in Entrepreneurship at the University of Tampa. Nicholas remembers the 5th grade Power Trip to visit the Grand Coulee Dam.
Andrew Ward (Class of 2014)
At Bainbridge High School (BHS), Andrew played varsity basketball all four years, serving as team captain his junior and senior years and earning the team MVP award both of those years. He also participated in the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) program, acting as secretary junior and senior years. He competed in a variety of FBLA competitions, winning a regional award in agribusiness. Andrew volunteered at Seattle homeless shelters through the BHS Social Justice League. He will attend the University of Notre Dame. Andrew remembers enjoying Market Day and Cultural Study (“pretty much anything that involved food”).
Class of 2007 Reunion
The Island School alumni from the class of 2007 reunited at the school on June 1, 2014. They will graduate from various high schools this month. Pictured left to right are Kian Ashabi, Sean Hitchcock, Austin Harper, Hildi Larson, Christine Henderson, Katie Gao, Kyle Van Wyck, Haley Green, Georgia Wellman, Christy Carley, Bryson Allen and Grace Miles.
William Carpenter (Class of 2006)
William Carpenter is studying mechanical engineering at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona. He is the Propulsion Group Lead for the Eagle Space Flight Team, a team formed in August 2014 with the goal of being the first undergraduate group to launch a student designed and built rocket beyond the internationally-recognized boundary of space (62 miles above sea level). He presented about the project during the National Association of Rocketry’s annual convention in 2015 at the Museum of Flight in Seattle. You can read about the six school records this team set at http://news.erau.edu/news-briefs/rocket-team-breaks-prescott-campus-records/.
Rafael Regan (Class of 2006)
Rafael spent his freshman year at Aviation High School in Des Moines, WA. He is now a senior at Ballard High School, where he runs on the track and cross-country teams, belongs to Earth Service Corps, and serves as secretary of the debate team. Outside of school, Rafael is a member of the Seattle Youth Commission and works with the City Council and the Mayor. His service on the Commission has let him recognize his gift of respecting and understanding others’ ideas while still staying true to his own opinions. He says, “Overall, my idea of success is growing up to understand that we all have something to contribute to society while finding a way to live happily . . . I feel like The Island School has given me so much in terms of self-confidence and friendships. The Island School has also given me the critical thinking skills that I use every day, from reading exercises in kindergarten with Kathy and Mary to the science projects in fifth grade with Mike and Betsy.”
Dylan Arnold (Class of 2005)
Dylan graduated from Idyllwild Arts Academy in 2012, an arts-based high school in southern California. He got his start in theater in The Island School productions in the portable classrooms (anyone remember those?), on the school library stage, and at Bainbridge Performing Arts. In the summer of 2011, he was cast in a lead role in an independent film titled Fat Kid Rules the World, playing the jock younger brother. Best summer job ever! The movie won praise from critics at the 2012 SXSW Film Festival and became an audience favorite at the 2012 Seattle International Film Festival. Dylan studies acting at North Carolina School of the Arts.
Hanna Hupp (Class of 2005)
“I am currently a junior in the Honors Program at Western Washington University, double-majoring in English Literature and Humanities. I am passionate about writing and editing, and have been involved with both Jeopardy and Labyrinth magazines on campus. I am currently a Non-Profit Management intern at Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth (BAAY), which promotes the kind of fun, creative, and exciting arts education that is sadly missing from so many schools. Working at BAAY has helped me reflect on how amazingly lucky I was to be able to go to The Island School, and to receive the kind of exciting, nurturing, and truly well-rounded education that every child deserves. My favorite memories of The Island School include Junk Art Day, Cultural Study, Monday Morning Sing, and playing Zombie Tag in the woods, among so many others. In the future, I am excited by the possibility of pursuing my passion for writing and community outreach by working in the non-profit sector.”
Scout Mills (Class of 2005)
Scout (previously Sarah) Mills has been awarded a Fulbright Scholarship, and she will be going to Russia to teach English to college students. She will graduate at the top of her class in the spring of 2016 from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR with a major in student-designed Russian studies.
Renee Henderson (Class of 2004) is the 2010-2011 Kingston High School Student of the Year
The Kingston High School staff selected Renee as the 2010-2011 student of the year “because she epitomizes the student who accepts academic and personal responsibilities with grace and charm. She is a sterling individual to have in the classroom, in athletics, and extracurricular activities. Simply stated, Renee demonstrates stellar qualities throughout the range of activities in which she participates. Congratulations, Renee, for a job well done and for recognition richly deserved.” Renee is now a sophomore nursing student at the University of San Francisco.
Class of 2004 Reunion
Members of The Island School Class of 2004 got reacquainted in Webster Hall on June 5, 2011, just one week before their high school graduations. Many parents and teachers were in attendance too. Pictured here are Fritz Schlesser, Jolyon Gidari, Tucker Gilles, Blake Harper, Dana Van Wyck, Clara Dunn, Renee Henderson, Tatum Larson, Rachel Schneiderman, Samantha Morrissey and Sarah Lukins.
Kiren Caldwell (Class of 2003)
I graduated from the George Washington University in 2015 with a Master's degree in Mechanical Engineering. While in college, I was taught how to code, but I remember writing my first "program" in third grade where we had to give very detailed and very basic instructions to Barb (who was dressed as an alien) on how to make a PB&J. Now I live in the Bay Area, developing code for Google's Project Loon to try and provide internet access to rural areas around the world. Outside of work, I spend much of my free time outdoors skiing, biking, or hiking, and always love coming back up to the Seattle area to see friends and to enjoy the rain.
Luc Rosenthal (Class of 2003)
Luc is spending a semester abroad in London immersed in the world of Shakespeare at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Luc gained access to the program through a sponsorship by New York University and was one of eight non-NYU students accepted. He is enrolled full time for five months and is pretty thrilled to be learning Shakespeare in England.
Class of 2003 Reunion
Eight members of The Island School Class of 2003 reunited at Webster Hall in July of 2010 as they marked their graduations from various high schools.
Willy Chotzen-Freund (Class of 2002)
Willy graduated Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Washington University in St. Louis in 2013. He double-majored in Economics and Political Science and minored in Legal Studies. He lists politics and baseball as his passions. He has interned in the California Governor’s Office and worked on Governor Jerry Brown’s campaign.
Through Teach for America, Willy is teaching math for two years at an underserved school in Oakland, CA. “I am excited about the challenge and opportunity to hopefully make a difference in students’ lives,” he says. He plans to attend law school after a few years and begin a career in politics or law.
Alexis Miles (Class of 2002)
Alexis participated in Running Start at Seattle Central Community College and graduated from Eagle Harbor High School. She moved to the Philadelphia area to be near her father’s side of the family and began an internship assisting with the design and development of a 26,000-square-foot mixed-use project. Her love for both commercial and residential real estate led her to Robert Morris University, where she studied Hospitality and Tourism Management. Alexis works as a licensed real estate agent with Coldwell Banker Real Estate Services in Moon Township, PA, and is passionate about changing communities and helping others change their lives. Her goal is to earn a Masters Degree in Real Estate Development. Alexis remembers the connections she made with students and teachers at The Island School and says, “I have never felt more comfortable and accepted. I don’t think I would be where I am if I hadn’t had the opportunity to attend The Island School.”
Bonnie Rae Mills (Class of 2002)
Bonnie Rae Mills is an award-winning editorial and commercial photographer, currently based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She graduated valedictorian from The Academy of Art University, and her work has been featured in multiple galleries and publications. To view her portfolio, go to bonnieraemillsphoto.com.
She says, ”The Island School places a lot of value on creativity and curiosity, which definitely fostered my development as an artist. I consider myself extremely lucky to have learned in such a supportive and close-knit community. And, I’m going to date myself, but one of my favorite specific memories is having teachers read Harry Potter at lunchtime!”
Graham Schneider (Class of 2001)
After graduating from Bainbridge High School, Graham Schneider studied religion at Carleton College in Minnesota. Graham next spent three years teaching high school philosophy and social science field research in Myanmar (Burma) and Thailand. Graham eventually earned his Master's in Education from Harvard University, and now teaches history at a diverse-by-design public charter school in Brooklyn, NY. Along the way, Graham has traveled to nearly 30 countries and 25 states.
Ben Tully (Class of 2000)
Ben is a teaching assistant in a British-style elementary school in Hong Kong. He graduated from Pacific Lutheran University in 2011 and has been in Hong Kong ever since. The son of The Island School’s former music teacher, Ben has enjoyed learning firsthand about the inner workings of a small school. “Now that I work at an elementary school, I find myself thinking a lot more about The Island School [which] gave me an invaluable education and a solid foundation to continue on in my academic life.” The overnight voyage on the research vessel Carlyn, the Seattle Children’s Theatre field trips, the Cultural Study and Lake Leak are fond memories. Ben’s idea of success is giving the world as much as, if not more than, one takes from it and putting a great deal of time and energy into effectively improving other people’s lives. Ben shares news about his travels and life in Hong Kong at http://msfaninhk.blogspot.com/ and his musical recordings at bentully.bandcamp.com.
Patrick Wauters (Class of 2000)
Patrick is enrolled in a two-year joint program with the University of Washington Masters of Forest Resources and the Peace Corps Masters International in Senegal. He serves as an agroforestry extension agent and says, “I live in a small village of about 600 people, where I work on a farm every day and help my community by . . . starting tree nurseries to establish a mango orchard and propagating thorny trees to plant around farms to protect from roaming cows.” Before Senegal, Patrick graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in Environmental Science and spent three months working and traveling in Brazil. His idea of success is “striking a perfect balance between the pursuits of knowledge, duty, and personal fulfillment.” He remembers the joy of playing in the woods at The Island School with his friends.
Cameron Gidari (Class of 1999)
“My first exposure to storytelling was an in-depth documentary on pinnipeds – or fin-footed mammals – presented to my fifth grade class. Since then I have been in love with telling stories.” Cameron’s writing career took off while a student at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, where he worked as a news and sports writer and interned for Fox Sports Arizona and ABC 15. He also blogged and hosted a weekly radio show for a Mixed Martial Arts website.
Cameron has written and worked in many media across the country. He uses words, pictures and videos to connect with people and connect them to each other. Cameron currently helps lead the Strategy & Insights team at a digital marketing firm in New York City, and has published two travel books on the hidden treasures of early-morning cities: Seattle Before8 and Manhattan Before8.
Lucy Cutler (Class of 1996)
Lucy is currently serving with the U.S. Peace Corps in Guatemala, where she teaches life skills classes to at-risk middle schoolers in a rural area. She also trains teachers and parents in how to build stronger support systems for children, and is facilitating connections between the community and aid organizations to build and equip a computer lab. She has run a girls’ summer camp, an English language workshop and a five-school career fair. Previously, Lucy spent a year with AmeriCorps working with the at-risk youth of Neah Bay, Washington, and received her bachelor’s degree from Bryn Mawr College. Lucy plans to pursue a master’s in public administration with a focus on international development.
Lucy is an avid competitive cyclist, a recreational distance runner, and loves to cook, bake and make arts and crafts. Her idea of success is achieving a balanced life with a family, a career and recreational activities. Lucy’s favorite memory of The Island School is playing in the woods and Lake Leak at recess and coming back to class covered in dirt and mud.
Ellen Ferrin (Class of 1996)
Ellen is a fifth grade teacher at a charter school in the Bronx, New York. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Amherst College, her Masters in Social Work at Columbia University and her Masters in Education from Bank Street College.
Ellen’s favorite memories include Monday Morning Sing and cross-grade lunch dates at The Island School. She is grateful for her education at The Island School because it emphasized “experience and inquiry rather than testing and memorization.” She says, “When I teach children now, I try to hold my excitement about learning close and make my lessons relevant, accessible and curiosity-provoking.” Ellen’s past work running a home for teenage girls convinced her of the close connection between social work and education, and she plans to train teachers in the basics of social work.
Ellen’s idea of success is multifaceted: making a difference in the lives of others, achieving balance, striving for improvement, and being strong and dependable in difficult situations. She enjoys running with her dog, playing basketball and volunteering.
Joey Alsberge (Class of 1994)
When I was a college student [at Lewis & Clark], I wanted more than anything to go to Africa and work with a medical project. I knew I wanted to go to medical school and become a doctor, but before I hunkered down for years of medical training, I really wanted to get some hands-on experience working for an extended period of time in a place of great need. As the end of my senior year of college approached, I identified a wonderful project to volunteer with in Burundi, East-Central Africa, called Village Health Works. They were starting a medical clinic in a rural village, and they needed help–it was just what I was looking for. . . I got to help get a clinic and its various programs up and running. Being there for two years really allowed me to make a significant contribution to the organization and the community, and I feel extremely lucky to have had that opportunity.
Joey will graduate in 2013 from Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City, and was inducted into his school’s Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society for his outstanding academics, leadership and community service. He completed an ophthalmology clerkship at Oregon Health & Science University in October, 2012. Read about Joey’s stint as a medical volunteer at a community clinic at http://weill.cornell.edu/news/publications/pdf/medicine2/2012-03_v1.pdf. Joey is proud that his nephew is now a student at The Island School.
Sarah Fowler (Class of 1992)
Sarah Fowler is living her dream—learning Spanish in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. After graduating from Western Washington University in Environmental Toxicology with minors in Chemistry and French, she worked as an environmental scientist for Windward Environmental for over six years. Sarah says, “Someday, I hope to return to the environmental field but I felt it was important for me to gain some different life experiences. One of my favorite parts about The Island School was the cultural studies program. I remember performing a Mexican dance for my family, enjoying the lively music and the vibrant colors. I think experiencing different cultures is very important and I am grateful that The Island School was able to give me an introduction to Mexican culture (among others). The friends I made at The Island School have turned out to be lifelong friends and I am happy to say that I am still connected with many of the teachers as well.“
Peter (Scribner) Webster (Class of 1991)
“I am living and working in Seattle. After graduating from college, I searched for work in the less-than-booming economy and am now working for dark | light Design where I design lighting for everything from schools and clinics to casinos. We are designing the new Seattle waterfront. I worked as part of the Game Day Operations Staff for the Seattle Sounders when they were minor league; now I’m working with the new professional women’s soccer team Seattle Reign FC, where I’m the facilities and equipment manager.”
Leigh Ferrin (Class of 1989)
My husband Carmen and I live in Tustin, CA, with our boxer dog, Jasmine. Carmen works at Athletes First, a company that represents athletes, and I am working at the Public Law Center, an organization that provides free legal services to low-income individuals. I am a staff attorney in the consumer department, working primarily on bankruptcy, debt collection and homeownership issues.
I have wonderful memories of The Island School, from the Carnival (I had to explain to Carmen what a “cake walk” was!) to learning French in kindergarten, to making a movie in my third grade class. I am very lucky that my mom is still involved so I get to go back and visit many of my elementary school teachers on a regular basis! And when I don’t get to visit, I at least get to hear about everyone, and about all the amazing changes that have occurred since I was a student there.
James Hunting (Class of 1989)
James is a Special Effects Coordinator/Pyrotechnician in Brooklyn, NY. He has worked on just about every variety of special effect but what he likes to do most is blow things up! He is proud to still have all his fingers and both eyebrows as talismans of his safe practices. In addition to pyrotechnic work, James has worked as an Effects Coordinator on several Broadway shows, countless photo shoots, live and taped television programs, and many films, music videos, and commercials. See more at jmfx.net/.
Chris Agnew (Class of 1987)
Chris is the Pacific Northwest Director at National Outdoor Leadership School in Conway, WA. He received his BA from Western Washington University and his Masters from Harvard Graduate School of Education. Chris’s idea of success is staying balanced and finding happiness in family, career, and outdoor adventures. He says, “The Island School gave me a comfort and self-awareness with how I learn best, and a depth of understanding numbers and patterns that can only be gained through hands-on exploration. I still use this foundational knowledge today when I’m looking at financials on an Excel spreadsheet.” He has fond memories of former first grade teacher Judy Jurgens, and of playing in the woods and on the rope swing at recess. It’s no surprise Chris fits the natural world into his life on a daily basis and chose a career that involves both teaching and the outdoors. Chris recently traveled to India and Nepal as part of his job, and enjoys rock climbing and backcountry skiing.
Paul Kikuchi (Class of 1986)
Paul is a percussionist, composer, and sound artist living in Seattle. After playing in rock bands in his youth with Island School buddy John Peter Hasson, Paul went on to earn degrees in music from Bennington College (BFA) and Cal Arts (MFA). As a performer Paul has toured extensively in the US and abroad and has appeared on over 40 albums. Artist Trust, Chamber Music America, Earshot Jazz, and 4Culture have recently recognized his work. Paul is the founder and artistic director of Prefecture Music, supporting contemporary music through performance, documentation, and education. Learn more at www.paulkikuchi.com. His favorite memories of The Island School are the woods, soccer and story time with Nancy Leedy. “The Island School is the best!”
Rainey Vokolek Scott (Class of 1986)
This photo was taken at The Island School’s Fall Carnival. My daughter Adelaide really enjoyed herself and I promised there would be more to come! It is special to think of the “next generation” of Island Schoolers … and something I kept in mind as I served on the Board of Trustees for the past six years. I felt privileged to work with people that care so much about the school. My experiences with the wonderful teachers, staff, parents, fellow classmates and trustees mean so much to me.
I enjoy living back on the Island with my husband Brian and our daughter Adelaide. I am the artifact collections manager at the Naval Undersea Museum in Keyport. Prior to that I was Curator at the Bainbridge Island Historical Museum and in the collections division at the Museum of Flight.
Ryan Nickum (Class of 1985)
Ryan is a marketing specialist and blogger for Estately, a Seattle-based real estate search site. He loves to write, and was a reporter for the Lewiston Morning Tribune. As a Peace Corps volunteer, Ryan taught English in the Republic of Georgia for two years. His life path has included work as a reporter, copywriter, bartender, restaurant cook and server, caregiver, oyster farmer, construction worker, environmental lobbyist, freelance writer, process server, political activist and podcaster. Ryan lives on Bainbridge Island with his wife, Paige and daughter, Amelia.
Lorna Leedy (Class of 1984)
Lorna lives at the Grand Canyon with her park ranger husband Peter and young son Hazard. She has owned a clothing and accessories line for eleven years, www.fancyponyland.com, and is opening a new store in Marfa, TX soon. Lorna is involved with The Grand Canyon Artist-in-Residence program, finds stray moments for making art, and will have a show in Seattle in September. She gives the occasional Tiny Grant through a philanthropic project born of her idea and resulting in the Tiny Foundation, at www.tinyfoundation.org. Lorna enjoys walking in the woods, cross-country skiing, and keeping up with Hazard.
Jessica Haggar (Class of 1983)
Jessica is a veterinarian. She graduated from Montana State University with a degree in biology and from Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine. Jessica is married and has a daughter and a son. Her fondest memories of The Island School are of Dave Leedy’s after school program.
Jana Jurgens MacCulloch (Class of 1983)
Jana Jurgens MacCulloch graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in Psychology. She lived in London after college and travelled all over Europe. Jana spent a lot of time volunteering with animal shelters back east, has driven cross country eight times and has four more states to visit to reach her goal of 50. She is an avid quilter, scuba diver, and New York City Marathon finisher. Jana says, ”I am ridiculously proud to be an Island School alum and even prouder that my sister is the third grade teacher. And most importantly, I have two beautiful children, Carmen [an Island School student] and Dylan.”