The Harvard Club of WNC has three main activities: Service, Interviewing, and Events. Each activity is led by one of our committees.

We all benefit from the dedication, creativity, and expertise of our volunteer committees.

 All alumni in the area are invited to get involved in the activity that they find most compelling!



December 2021 Newsletter


Dear WNC Harvardian, 


Arthur Brooks 1/10/22 - HAA Speakers Bureau

The Harvard Club of Western North Carolina is hosting exciting events, both virtual and in-person, over the next few months,

which we’d love for you to attend.

In September, over 30 alumni and guests joined us for a fun-filled, outdoor gathering at Forestry Camp in Asheville!

We reconnected with old friends and forged new friendships. 

1) Professor Arthur Brooks on the topic of “Happiness”, January 10, 2022

Monday, January 10, 2022, 6-7 pm, Virtual (invitation attached)

The Harvard Clubs of the Southeast and Coastal Georgia invite you to a Zoom lecture by Arthur C. Brooks

on his prolific work on the formula for happiness.

Professor Brooks is the author of the "How to Build a Life" column for The Atlantic, and he also hosts

a new podcast series on all things happiness, How to Build a Happy Life

Professor Brooks is currently writing a book entitled

From Strength to Strength: Finding Success, Happiness and Deep Purpose in the Second Half of Life.  

Click here to RSVP by January 6th and to receive a link to the event.

Follow Professor Brooks on Social Media!

- Twitter: @arthurbrooks

- Instagram: @arthurcbrooks

2) Harvard Club Global Networking Night

 Global Networking Night: Wednesday, March 16, Evening

Save the Date:  Location and exact time to be shared in the coming weeks

3) Harvard Club of WNC Dues: Renew or join

Annual membership to the Harvard Club of WNC is only $25 and supports the Club with programming and scholarship funds.

You can also donate any amount to the Scholarship and Book Funds. Please consider renewing or joining today!

Missy Sherburne, Club President Ellen Carr, Treasurer Olga Mahoney, Vice-President       Ofri Gilan, Secretary

Harvard Club Leadership Transition

We’ve been operating with a skeleton crew for the past couple of years. Missy Sherburne (HKS,’ 03), our current President,

has kept the Club going with the help of our new VP, Olga Mahoney (M.Ed. ‘97), and Treasurer Ellen Carr (AB ’94).

More recently, Ofri Hirsch (MDes ‘06) has stepped up to help out with technology and events. The four of us would love company!

As we come out of COVID, and Missy takes on a leadership position with the Harvard Alumni Association (HAA),

we are looking for new leadership to reenergize the Club. We have a good group of local alums who contribute to the club

in various administrative ways, but we need to build our bench so that we have candidates to take the helm in the years to come.

This will be a discussion item at the annual get-together (more info on this below),

but if you find yourself intrigued by this great opportunity to get to know your local classmates, and have energy and time to devote to

rebooting our club, please reach out!



Annual Get-Together

Please save the date for our annual meeting and happy hour at Forestry Camp on Thursday, September 30th from 5-7pm. Be on the lookout for the official invitation. This will be a great chance to socialize with your fellow alums as well as sort out some official club business. We will also be soliciting your input on future club activities and looking for volunteers to help out with all aspects of the Club—so bring your good will and great ideas! 

Interviewing Committee

Since it’s been some time since our last communique, here’s an update on the last two years of Harvard interviewing.

Our interviewing committee, spearheaded by John Van Wye (MD ’81) and Angela Newnam (MBA ‘96), coordinated a record 58 applicant interviews in the 2020-2021 school year. Six students were waitlisted (none of whom were admitted), and one student was admitted in the Early Action round: Kelsey Mann from Asheville School. Congratulations, Kelsey, from your alumni community! 

During the 2019-2020 school year we interviewed 45 applicants, of which two were accepted Early Action: Justice Agobor and Michael Mahoney, both from Christ School. 

Thanks also to the entire Interviewing Committee for your gifts of time, wisdom, and discernment: Amy Alexander (’06), Ellen Carr (‘94), Dan Casse (MPA ‘89), Dan Ford (MLAUD ’00), Jill Fromewick (MS ‘01/ScD ’08), Rob Gage ('70), Demetrius Giger '14, Jeff Goodman (’85), Scott Hickman (MBA ’87), Daniel Lopez (’97),  Olga Mahoney (EdM '97), Mike McCue ('73, MBA '75), Mark Morris, MD ('72), Todd Newnam (MBA ’96), Tom Plaut ('60), Stephen Presser (’68, JD ’71), Mary Robinson-Hervig (’06), Beate Short ('88), Anna Wheeler (’95), Matt Williams, Peter Williams (’65), and Canyon Woodward ('15). We thank you all for your service!

We also give a special thanks to John Van Wye for his decades of service as a chair of the committee. Effective summer 2022, he will be passing the baton to Daniel Lopez (‘97), who will assume co-chair responsibilities with Angela Newnam. 

If you’d like to get involved in assisting and interviewing high school seniors by contacting John Van Wye at jvw@post.harvard.edu or Angela Newnam at angelanewnam@gmail.com . It's a meaningful way to keep in touch with the pulse of the lives of talented students from our area, and to enjoy some amazing conversations with these young men and women. 

11 Harvard Book Prizes Awarded

Through the Harvard Book Prize Program coordinated by John Van Wye (MD ’81), the Harvard Club of WNC has donated copies of Making the Most of College - Students Speak Their Minds to 11 area high schools, to be awarded to "an outstanding junior" selected by the school faculties. 

Alumni News

We would love to hear news from local alumni! Please email Ellen Carr (eocarr@gmail.com) with any updates you’d like to publish in the quarterly(ish) newsletter we’re planning to send out going forward. For now, here are a couple of publications from local Harvard folks:

Kerry Garvin (ALB ’17, ALM ’20) recently relocated to Bryson City. She teaches Creative Nonfiction Writing to Women Veterans at the Asheville VA, Creative Writing through Haywood Community College's Creative Arts Continuing Education, and Environmental Storytelling at Unity College. And she just published a book, What Doesn’t Kill Her: Women’s Stories of Resilience, which Gloria Steinem, among others, praised. 

Ellen Carr (BA ’94), a North Asheville resident and your Treasurer, recently published a co-authored book, Undiversified: The Big Gender Short in Investment Management, which explores why there are so few professional female investors—and how to change that. 

Megan Epler Wood of Harvard to speak in Asheville, September 22

Megan Epler Wood is a thought leader, author, teacher, speaker, and consultant on questions of managing sustainable tourism for destinations and a founder of the field of ecotourism.  From 2010-2021 her research and online courses at Harvard University vetted a wide range of solutions to help protect travel destinations.

Join Megan as she kicks off the Ideas to Action Leadership Forum, a program of THRIVE ASHEVILLE, a year-long community-led discussion about sustainable tourism. Learn more and RSVP to join via Zoom on 9/22 from 12-1 EST https://www.buildingourcity.org/ 

A Reminder—We Are Paperless!

Communications and financial transactions are available and encouraged online. Make sure Harvard Alumni Association has your correct email address at http://alumni.harvard.edu so you can receive email from the Club about upcoming events.

Upcoming Events

We’ll end as we began—mark your calendars for THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 30’s Annual Meeting and happy hour at Forestry Camp. We are also planning an event for late fall. See you soon!


Missy Sherburne

President, Harvard Club of WNC




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