Day 2005 Honors Five Distinguished Alumnae
For their extraordinary professional
achievements and outstanding service to their communities,
five Smith College alumnae will receive the Smith College
Medal, an award presented each February on Rally Day.
The event, which honors distinguished alumnae and gathers
students in a celebratory, festive rally, will take place
at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, February 23, in Sweeney Concert
Hall, Sage Hall (see related story).
The Smith College Medal was established in 1962 to recognize
and honor alumnae “who, in the judgment of the trustees,
exemplify in their lives and work the true purpose of a liberal
arts education.” This year, an exemplary group of accomplished
professionals and public servants has been selected to receive
the award. They are Candace McKee Ashmun,
Judith Levenson Clapp, Susan Low
Bloch, Anne E. Kazak, and L.
At this year’s Rally Day convocation, the five medalists
will participate in a panel discussion, responding to questions
submitted by students and moderated by President Carol T.
Candace Ashmun has had a significant impact on the protection
of New Jersey’s environment and natural resources. She
was a water-quality researcher for the Raritan Watershed Association
before serving as the executive director of the Association
of New Jersey Environmental Commission. Since 1982, she has
been a private consultant to nonprofit organizations on both
environmental issues and office automation. An early user
of personal computers, she has also designed a number of useful
programs. She is the longest serving member of the Pinelands
Commission, having been appointed to that body by New Jersey
Governor Byrne when it was created in 1979 and reappointed
by four successive New Jersey governors.
Judith Clapp, Senior Principal Software Systems Engineer at
The MITRE Corporation in Bedford, Massachusetts, is considered
a pioneer in establishing software engineering as a discipline.
After receiving her masters of science degree from Radcliffe
University in 1952, she became the only woman on a small team
at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which designed
a proof-of-concept prototype for an air defense system using
Whirlwind, one of the earliest digital computers. When the
Air Force funded the development of a comprehensive air defense
system, she became co-director of the software for the combat
centers that needed air defense operations. She developed
automated aids for the programmers, virtually inventing the
discipline of software engineering. In 1959, the project moved
to the MITRE Corporation where Judith Clapp remains employed.
Susan Bloch, professor of law at Georgetown University Law
Center in Washington, D.C., is one of the most prominent women
legal scholars in the nation, with a career spanning both
public interest issues and classical legal education. She
co-authored the first book on the Supreme Court that examined
the Court from an interdisciplinary point of view, and she
is often sought out by the press to comment on Supreme Court
issues. She wrote the amicus brief in the Paula Jones case
and took the lead in organizing 400 legal and constitutional
scholars and historians on the law of impeachment. This group
offered the opinion that President Clinton’s offenses
did not rise to the level of impeachment. She has also commented
on and been quoted widely in the media on the University of
Michigan Affirmative Action Admissions cases and since the
2003 decision by the Supreme Court, has published on the future
of affirmative action. After graduating from the University
of Michigan Law School, she completed judicial clerkships
with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall and U.S.
Court of Appeals D.C. Circuit Judge Spottswood Robinson.
A professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania,
Anne Kazak’s primary appointment is in the Department
of Pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
and she has a secondary appointment with the Department of
Psychiatry. Voted 2003 Family Psychologist of the Year by
the American Psychological Association, she is currently the
editor of the Journal of Family Psychology and a
former editor of the Journal of Pediatric Psychology.
For her groundbreaking work on the inclusion of family in
the psychological world of the child, she received the Logan
Wright Award for Distinguished Research in 2002.
After her graduation from Smith in 1980, Stoner Winslett became
the artistic director and choreographer of the Richmond Ballet,
which she built from a small student company with a budget
of $160,000 to one of the nation’s leading regional
professional dance companies with a $3 million budget in 2000.
When knee injuries in college made it impossible for her to
concentrate on dancing, she focused her energies on the other
aspects of the dance world. Today she is highly regarded for
her multi-faceted leadership—artistic director, choreographer,
fundraiser, financial manager, overseer of design and construction
of a new facility, and creator of significant education and
outreach. She is one of very few female artistic directors
and is the only one who also produces her own choreography.
Her innovative Minds in Motion program reaches several hundred
fourth graders, largely inner-city minorities, in 10 schools
each year, teaching them discipline, dedication and self-awareness
through dance. The School of the Richmond Ballet enrolls 500
students, age 4 to adults, and their Lecture Demonstration
series sends professional dancers into schools throughout