Feature Stories Campus Events

Alumnus Ted Le Clercq's Role in Katrina Recovery

For Washington and Lee alumnus Ted Le Clercq, this week’s fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina marked the successful completion of a significant campaign through which he has helped one of New Orleans’ great streets return to its previous grandeur.

A member of W&L’s Class of 1986, Ted was the guiding force in the effort to replant live oak trees along St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans’ main streetcar line. He walked the historic avenue, knocking on doors to raise money from businesses and citizens and getting permissions to plant the trees.

Last weekend, as the city’s residents commemorated the events of those horrific days in 2005, the last of the 250 trees was planted.

In a story about his efforts in the Tulane University New Wave, Ted said: “Celebrated by tourists and locals alike, St. Charles Avenue has been ranked among the 10 greatest streets in America. Live oaks are a symbol of St. Charles Avenue and of our city — they grace the avenue with beauty, they cause a cooling effect during our many hot months, and they increase business by attracting people to the avenue.” You can hear a 2008 interview with Ted about the project on New Orleans Podcasting

According to various media reports, the private-public partnership resulted in the $280,000 project — all from private donations — and included planting 130 trees between Lee Circle and Jackson Ave., where there had been few trees before the storm hit in 2005.

Ted, a philosophy major at W&L, is an employment and professional liability defense attorney with Deutsch, Kerrigan and Stiles and was recently named one of the top 50 leaders in the law in New Orleans by New Orleans City Business.

W&L in the Governor's Office

Last month, when Randy Minchew, a member of the Washington and Lee Law Class of 1984, was named deputy counselor and advisor to Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, he joined fellow W&L alumnus Mike Reynold, of the Class of 2002, as a member of the McDonnell administration.

Mike has been there since last November, serving as assistant director for policy. He had been McDonnell’s deputy campaign manager. One of Mike’s primary roles at the moment is directing McDonnell’s Committee on Government Reform and Restructuring, which began its work in June.

Randy, managing shareholder of the Loudoun, Va., office of Walsh, Colucci, Lubeley, Emrich and Walsh P.C., serves as part-time legal counsel to McDonnell and assists with various projects related to public policy. He is a prominent land-use attorney in Loudon County. An announcement of Randy’s appointment appeared in both the Loudon Times and the Washington Post.

Reynold and Minchew are old friends, having worked together on McDonnell’s 2005 campaign for attorney general and serving as Virginia leaders in the 2008 John McCain presidential campaign.

W&L Art Faculty Exhibits at Capital One

Washington and Lee University studio art faculty will present their work at the corporate gallery of Capital One in Richmond starting next month and continuing through December.

The exhibition will feature works by Leigh Ann Beavers, visiting assistant professor of art; Christa Bowden, assistant professor of art; Clover Archer Lyle, visiting instructor of photography; Kathleen Olson, professor of art; and Larry Stene, professor of art.

Capital One maintains an extensive permanent collection of art, and reserves exhibition space in their facilities for work from regional universities. Capital One associates are the primary audience for the exhibitions, but viewings can be arranged by limited appointment.

Previous universities who have participated in the exhibition program include Virginia Commonwealth University, the University of Virginia, James Madison University, Virginia Tech and Mary Baldwin College.

Use Social Media to Keep Up with the Generals

Fans of the Generals can now follow Washington and Lee’s varsity athletic teams on both Facebook and Twitter.

You can get the latest updates on all W&L’s teams by “liking” the Generals’ Facebook page.

If you’re a Twitter user, be sure to follow the Generals by going to http://twitter.com/wlugenerals. You’ll get up-to-the-minute scores throughout the year along with breaking news stories.

And don’t forget the From the Sidelines blog that Sports Information Director Brian Laubscher maintains. You can find it at http://wlusidelines.wordpress.com/

Kaylee Hartung Moving to the Sidelines

In addition to working at CBS as an associate producer for the Sunday public affairs show Face the Nation and on camera as a featured correspondent on the daily web show Washington Unplugged, Washington and Lee alumna Kaylee Hartung of the Class of 2007 has a new assignment as a sideline correspondent for college football on the CBS College Sports Network.

We blogged about Kaylee’s work about a year ago and listed some of the many interviews that she did on the Washington Unplugged series.

After she joined CBS College Sports Network earlier this month, Kaylee was interviewed by her former boss, Bob Schieffer, and told the story of how an Alabama politician had used Photoshop to create a relationship with Alabama football coach Nick Saban. Have a look at the interview on YouTube.

Emotional Win

When Éclair de Lune, a four-year-old German bred filly, came from behind to win the $750,000 Beverly D. Stakes at Arlington Park race track outside Chicago this past Saturday, there weren’t any dry eyes in the winner’s circle where the horse’s owner, Richard L. Duchossois, of Washington and Lee’s Class of 1944, accepted the trophy to a standing ovation from more than 30,000 fans.

Why all the emotion?

The Beverly D. Stakes is named in honor of Dick’s late wife, Beverly, who died in 1980 of cancer. Éclair de Lune, a horse Dick purchased last year, was the fourth horse that he had entered in the Beverly D., but the first to make it to the winner’s circle.

“When we won, I didn’t know what to think,” said Dick, who is the chairman of Arlington Park. “Then someone hit me on the back and said we won.” He added that the victory “means more to me than winning the Kentucky Derby.”

Media reports about the special moment all emphasized how everyone in the park was rooting for “Mr. D.” to get the win, noting that he has become a legend in the racing world. Fans at Arlington Park clearly appreciate how he rebuilt the racetrack after a fire destroyed the grandstand in 1985.

Of the fan support, he told the Chicago Daily Herald: “I was very surprised and it makes you feel wonderful. Whenever I’ve run a horse, I have had tremendous support from the fans. We built this place for the fans and this was their horse.”

And W&L sports fans can relate to that. In addition to the Duchossois Tennis Center, gifts from Mr. D. have been key to the outdoor athletic facilities, which are now named in recognition of his support.

Still Winning

Ginny Wortham, of the Class of 2007 and a member of the Generals’ 2007 NCAA Division III national championship tennis team, is still competing and winning national championships.

Earlier this month Ginny teamed up with her mother, Lindsay, to capture two titles at the USTA Mother/Daughter Grass Court Championships in Newport, R.I.

The Worthams won both the senior and open divisions. In the latter, they were unbeaten in five matches of a round robin event, rallying from a 1-6 defeat in the third match to win and finish unbeaten.

Ginny is the two-time defending Richmond city champion but needs another title to match her mother, who won three championships.

In a story in the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Ginny gave her mother much of the credit: “I don’t think there’s any question about it,” she said. “We won because I had the best mom. Some of the other girls were really good — a couple of them are Division I players — but their moms were weaker, which meant there was always a target for us to hit to.”

New Online Look for Law

If you haven’t noticed it yet, the School of Law has just completed a makeover of its web home page. The design is closely aligned with the University’s home page, and it effectively adds more multimedia, featuring now a “Year in Review” slide show and a video in which law professor David Millon discusses the Honor System.

Click on the image below to have a look.

The Monument in the Monument

Earlier this week Beau Dudley, W&L’s director of alumni affairs, received an e-mail from R. K. Barton, of the Class of 1963, forwarding an e-mail from Beth Niccolini, of the Class of 1997,  forwarding an e-mail from her husband–who, while taking the elevator down in the Washington Monument, noticed that one of the 193 memorial stones on the interior walls had been donated by the alumni of Washington College.

The e-mail included the photo below:

So we decided to do a little research on the National Park Service website. And here’s what we discovered. The stone is marble, and it’s 2′ by 4’6″. It’s located 130 feet from the bottom of the monument.

On March 20, 1854, Junius M. Fishburn, a professor of Latin at Washington College, wrote a letter to Elisha Whittlesey, the general agent for the Washington Monument, and stated that the College had procured $100 to purchase the stone. Professor Fishburn instructed that the stone be delivered to the area’s congressman, John Letcher, himself an 1833 alumnus of Washington College, “exercising your own taste and judgement for us in the selection of a block.” Professor Fishburn sent the inscription to Mr. Whittlesey, who wrote back to suggest that “Virginia” be spelled out rather than abbreviated.

And there it is today, for all to see, if they’re paying as close attention as Beth Niccolini’s husband.

Money Management for Young Adults

When Drew Catanese of the Class of 2004 got his first high school teaching job, he found the process of selecting health insurance plans and 401Ks and home mortgage plans a puzzle for which he was not prepared.

“I remember thinking, ‘I’m a college-educated adult, and I have no idea what all this is about,'” Drew said recently in an interview about his new book, A Pathway to Financial Independence for Young Adults.

Drew describes the book, which was published in June by Authorhouse, as an easy-to-read guide to managing money, from getting out of debt to investing in the stock market to saving for retirement. “Although it could help out almost anyone, the book is specifically directed toward young adults (and recent college graduates who are starting their first jobs) who are learning how to plan for their financial futures,” he added.

Drew has been teaching Spanish while working his master’s degree at Middlebury College. He and his family plan to move to Madrid, where he’ll finish his master’s.

You can find information about Drew’s book on Facebook and can buy it online at Amazon. And you can read an interview with Drew from the Garden City (Kan.) Telegram.