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Reunion tickets now on sale!

Email announcements 

What are you doing September 13-15, 2024?

You’re coming to reunite, rekindle and relive your ETown and ETHS experiences with your classmates from ETHS (as well as your elementary and middle schools) in a variety of events, all coordinated and planned by your classmates. Come one and come all!

We have secured the beautiful Lakeview Room at Glenview Park District's Park Center facility for our Saturday night main event on September 14, 2024. Other events will be revealed and detailed as time goes on. Please put it in your calendar now. Contact classmates that you want to see and make sure they've joined our website. Use our #ETHS1974Cheersto50Years hashtag when you post on social media. 

We would love to have you volunteer to plan and participate. Let us know your interests, or ask any questions by emailing us at reunion@ETHS1974.com.

See you in September!

Your ETHS Class of 1974 Reunion Association Planning Committee

 

Welcome to the official web site for the ETHS Class of 1974 Reunion Association.

The most important thing for you to do while here is to join the site. Doing so and providing basic contact information ensures that we'll be able to communicate with you. Just visit the link to begin your registration.

Please note that your information on this site is confidential, and will never be shared or sold to any commercial enterprise. You may choose to share information with fellow classmates, but that is entirely your own decision.

While we do our best to reach out to everyone, many of our classmates are still missing. Please encourage all former classmates in your circle to visit this site and join

Your ETHS Class of 1974 Reunion Association Planning Committee

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ANNOUNCEMENTS

ETHS Class of 1974 Reunion Association

Minutes of the Annual Meeting

Saturday, January 27, 2024

In attendance via teleconference:

Jada Robitaille, Kate Morand, Robert Gold, Mark Lipowicz, Diane Hermanek, Joseph Banks, Karen Boyd, Heidi Campbell, Amy Chapman, Joanne Cole, Inez Gardner, Robert Hatchett, Tom Klamm, Jim Ossyra, Peter Martin, Earl Paden, Terri Porter, Mike Poulos, Debbie Trachtenberg, Phil Roycraft, Linda Wenstrom, Wendy Woolf.

Call to Order, Welcome, and Introduction

Association President Jada Robitaille called the meeting to order at 12:05 p.m. CST.

Association Vice President Robert (Bob) Gold directed everyone’s attention to the agenda page of the meeting document. Jada welcomed all members to the meeting and remarked that the RSVPs were at 35, a record for attendance. Jada linked the interest in the annual meeting to what is expected to be a large turnout for the events of the 50th reunion. The Association’s Executive Committee is comprised of the four officers of the Association: Jada (President), Robert (Vice President and Co-Chair of Logistics), Secretary (vacant), Mark Lipowicz (Treasurer); as well as Diane Hermanek (Membership Chair), and Jada Robitaille (Logistics Chair).

Jada requested a motion to accept the meeting’s agenda. Debbie Trachtenberg offered the motion; seconded by Kate Morand. The agenda was adopted without discussion. Jada asked for a motion to accept the minutes of the 2023 Annual Meeting. Kate Morand offered the motion; seconded by Debbie Trachtenberg. The minutes were adopted without discussion.

Executive Committee Report

Jada began the Executive Committee report by stating that the purpose of the Reunion Association is to maximize attendance at the 50th Reunion and to make great memories. As a reminder, the dates for the reunion are September 13-15, 2024. Jada reiterated that all members of the ETHS Class of 1974 are members of the Association, as well as selected others on a case-by-case basis. Jada shared that much work has already begun on the reunion, details to follow later in the meeting. Jada turned the meeting over to Bob to preside over the status and election of officers of our Board.

Bob introduced himself as Vice President and Co-Chair. He explained that there are presently two vacancies on the Executive Committee, President and Secretary. By way of explanation, there are four officer positions, plus Membership and Logistics Chairs on the Committee. In addition to her duties as Logistics Chair, Jada was appointed President last year when Kate Morand went on leave.

Bob opened the floor for nominations for President and Secretary (vacant since last January).

Jada nominated Kate Morand for President; Diane seconded. Kate made brief remarks in which she thanked Jada for her hard work. She feels enthusiastic and hopeful that this reunion will be our best yet! Kate was elected by acclamation. Bob entertained nominations for Secretary. Jada nominated Diane Hermanek; Debbie seconded. Diane made brief remarks and was elected by acclamation. Bob thanked Kate and Diane for their willingness to hold office.

As Logistics Chair, Jada reviewed the key activities of 2023 including her appointment as President. The planning for the 2024 reunion began in earnest including determining dates and venues. Mark Lipowicz, Treasurer, became involved in the Class Gift Committee. It is traditional for a class to contribute to the ETHS Foundation to commemorate the 50th anniversary of its graduation. Jada thanked Mark for his hard work thus far and turned the discussion over to him.

Treasurer’s Report

Mark thanked previous generations of officers and members for their excellent stewardship of the Association’s finances. Following the last reunion there was a positive balance of about $4,000.00. $1,700.00 was paid to the Glenview Park District as deposit for the Lakeview Room at the Park Center, site of our main event celebration on September 14th. Insurance for the event was also purchased for $263.00. We have a balance of about 2,400.00, however the next payment to the venue is due in four months. Additionally, just before the main event we will have to pay the caterer, which means it will be important for people to purchase their tickets early as it will help our positive cash flow. There is approximately 500.00 set aside in scholarship funds for the event; this will be discussed and planned for as we get closer to finalizing plans. In sum, we are solvent.

Mark asked for questions, and Debbie asked about ticket costs. Mark explained that we do not have exact numbers quite yet, but the details are being worked on as we speak.

Membership Committee Report

Bob thanked Mark for his excellent management of our finances. Bob briefly reviewed the membership statistics, reporting an increase in membership on both the website and Facebook.

481 classmates are members of the website, an increase of 14 since last year’s annual meeting. Per Debby’s query, 623 classmates have not joined, however this number has decreased from last year’s number of 643. 112 members are deceased. When reporting a classmate’s passing, Bob kindly reminded us to provide a link to the obituary as confirmation.

There were four email bounce backs, an improvement since last year there were nine; we are hopeful we can continue to find missing classmates. All your efforts in this regard are greatly appreciated. 431 classmates belong to our Facebook group, an increase of 10 over last year. We know that not all those belonging to the Facebook group belong to the website, and vice versa. Bob strongly encouraged everyone to join the website as it is the most reliable and up to date place to get information about all things Class of 1974 related, most notably where to purchase reunion tickets, which will not be available for purchase on Facebook.

Diane gave her Membership report, and thanked those who have reached out to missing classmates, reiterating the power of personal connection in this type of outreach. Diane asked members to consider themselves ambassadors as they find and engage with classmates previously not involved. The potential for rekindling of friendships is an effective way to encourage participation, and she thanked everyone for considering this moving forward. Debby asked about LinkedIn: Do we ever mine this platform for missing members? Debby offered and Bob thanked her for offering to search classmates in LinkedIn. Bob cautioned everyone to beware of phishing scams coming from what may look like legitimate sources and gave an example of this per a classmate’s experience. Again, please update your information on our website and encourage others to do the same. Our outreach is the very best way to capture new members. As a reminder, our class website is http://www.eths1974.com. Bob pointed out that we do not receive automatic database updates from the Alumni Association, nor do we receive updates from Classmates.com or any other reunion web site.

Class Gift Committee Report

Mark introduced Jim Ossyra (in attendance), as being very involved in the Gift Committee along with he and Kate. This year is the centennial of the ETHS Dodge campus! The Foundation has many events planned that include a building tour on Saturday morning, 9/14. Since previous reunions have happened during the summer when the building is closed, this will be the first time in many years that we will be able to tour the inside. Mark mentioned the building Centennial the building Centennial celebration on school grounds following the tour and we expect to present our class gift during that event. We have the good fortune of having been anonymously gifted two $10,000.00 donations towards our gift, for a total of $20,000.00. These funds are a gift match, which means that after we have raised the first $20,000.00, it will be matched to total $40,000.00. We are very grateful to these donors and efforts are underway to solicit more donations in this campaign. Kate pointed out that the Foundation raises funds specifically to help renovate and improve the school, since tax dollars are not sufficient to support this necessary work. Jim, who has been involved with the Foundation and Alumni Association for 25 years, reinforced this and described the Foundation as being ever more successful and professional. The results of this are evident in the transformation of ETHS, which we will see during the tour. Presently the Arts Wing is in dire need of renovation, and Jim is hopeful our class gift will be a significant contribution to this project. Many thanks to Jim. The website for your donation to the class gift is https://www.supporteths.org/class-of-1974-50th-reunion-class-gift/,

50th Reunion Update

Jada described the events outlined for the reunion thus far. She has streamlined the schedule this year to reflect the need to keep costs down, since prices have skyrocketed in the post-COVID world.

  • There will be a pub crawl in downtown Evanston on Friday, September 13, and Dean Naritoku is the organizer.
  • Small group elementary/junior high gatherings will take place after the Crawl. Jada has identified a few organizers for these events, but we need more help. Please reach out if you are interested. Saturday morning is the Centennial Tour. An organizer has been identified for this, also, and is working with the Foundation.
  • Food trucks and other activities are planned for after the tour. PLEASE NOTE: Our class has its own tour of the school which begins at 9:30 a.m. Details will follow soon.
  • Saturday evening is the main event in the beautiful, private Lakeview Room at the Park Center in Glenview. The setting is ideal with ample free parking, a spacious main room for dinner, a patio overlooking the lake, and many other cozy nooks for personal conversations.
  • Food: Two caterers are under final consideration. Dinner will be buffet style with a selection of fresh, delicious foods chosen to accommodate a wide variety of dietary needs. We will be tasting ahead of the final selection.
  • Beverages: Unlimited soft drinks will be included in the ticket price. Optional wristband for alcohol must be purchased ahead of time at a higher ticket cost.
  • Ticketing: Policies are being considered and prices are not yet determined. Catering costs are up significantly post COVID, but please note we are carefully taking this into consideration.
  • There will be no onsite, inside the building sales of tickets or wristbands. We are prohibited by the Park District to conduct any financial transactions onsite. Information about last minute tickets will be shared as those details become available but suffice to say we are strongly encouraging all members to purchase their tickets early. Tickets are expected to go on sale soon and will only be available on our website.
  • As in years past, Sunday the 15th has been reserved for additional small group gatherings which are being organized by volunteers (Music Wing, crew, sports, etc.). The Reunion Association is not organizing any of the small group gatherings or the tour, however we will be promoting these events as well as providing support as needed. We are seeking more organizers for these events! This pertains to Friday evening, Saturday evening and Sunday gatherings.
  • You do not have to be local to help plan and execute this reunion! Many of us live out of state and thanks to technology we can meet and make plans easily. Please contact Jada or Kate to let them know of your interest in helping: Jada@ETHS1974.com , Kate@ETHS1974.com.
  • Accommodations: Book on your own, and soon! There is no NU football game scheduled on Saturday, however due to the ETHS celebration hotel rooms may be scarce. Jada suggested using the many consolidator travel sites for airfare and hotel rooms. She also suggested looking at nearby suburbs to save money and find better availability. We have not reserved blocks of rooms as they went unused in past years.
  • All official information about the reunion will be provided at ETHS1974.com. Details will be announced in advance by email and on Facebook.

New Business/Open Discussion

  • Debby initiated a conversation about photo booths and/or a photographer. These options will be considered, and cost is a factor.
  • Michael Poulos asked about a live music ensemble comprised of classmates and the answer was a resounding yes! Mike will make himself available for sending out feelers.
  • Terri Porter asked about a list of nearby accommodations. Kate volunteered to head up creating something like this and she will post it on the website and Facebook.

Adjournment

With a motion and unanimous vote, Kate adjourned the meeting at 1:14 pm CST.

Respectfully Submitted,

Diane Hermanek, Secretary

ETHS Class of 1974 Reunion Association

Minutes of the 2023 Annual Meeting
Sunday 22 January 2023

In attendance via teleconference:

Ellen Byrne, Maria Gebhard, Robert Gold, Diane Hermanek, Adrienne Schwarzbach Johnson,
Thomas Klamm, Audrey Bridges LeGrand, Mark Lipowicz, Richard Lynn, Kate Morand, Dean Naritoku, Myrna Joy Newman, James Powell, Martin Price, Carol Remen, Jada Robitaille, Joanne Silvertrust,
Debby Richman Trachtenberg

Call to Order, Welcome, and Introduction

Association president Kate Morand called the meeting to order at 12:02 p.m. CST.

Kate offered an introduction to the ETHS Class of 1974 Reunion Association, and reiterated that all members of the ETHS Class of 1974 are members of the Association, as well as selected others. She urged all members of the association to join and update their contact information at the Association’s web site, https://eths1974.com. The Association’s Executive Committee is comprised of the four officers of the Association; Kate (President), Robert Gold (Vice President), Maria Gebhard (Secretary), and Mark Lipowicz (Treasurer), along with Diane Hermanek (Membership Chair), and Jada Robitaille (Logistics Chair).

Kate went on to share that the Executive Committee is already hard at work planning the 50th reunion for 2024. Kate noted that several members of the Association expressed an interest in volunteering when completing the survey that was completed in November of 2022, and that visits to prospective venues began over the summer of 2022.

Kate described objectives for 2023:

  • Determine the date of the reunion weekend
  • Determine the schedule of the reunion weekend
  • Select venue(s) and secure with deposit(s)
  • Continue to search for missing classmates and encourage them to join the web site
  • Recruit planners for small group events to take place during the reunion weekend

Maria Gebhard provided the minutes of the Association’s 30 January 2022 Annual Meeting. Jada Robitaille offered a motion to adopt the minutes of the 2022 meeting, and Diane Hermanek seconded the motion. The minutes were adopted without discussion.

Kate offered to entertain a motion to approve the agenda for today’s meeting, which was offered by Jada, and seconded by Debby Richman Trachtenberg. The agenda was approved without discussion.

Executive Committee Report

Kate began the Executive Committee report by expressing gratitude for the team, and detailed some of the considerable work that has already taken place. Kate reiterated the Executive Committee’s ongoing efforts to foster diversity in its membership when recruiting new members.

Robert Gold added to the Executive Committee report by extending our welcome to the new faces attending today’s meeting, as well as the new names and faces who participated in the survey. Bob pointed out that the Association has only one database, which is on our web site. He added that some classmates are on the Association’s Facebook page, but not registered with the web site, and that some responded to the survey with a different email address than is found in the web site database. Bob confirmed that the Association has no connection with, nor receive data from classmates.com or the ETHS Alumni Association. Bob reinforced our policy to not spam our membership, nor to share data from our database with anyone outside the Association. He reiterated that classmates can control what data in the database is visible to other members of the class. 

Richard Lynn asked about receiving solicitations for selling yearbooks. Bob confirmed that we’re not connected with that promotional campaign, and encouraged classmates who do not wish to receive those solicitations to email that request to Richard Futransky of the ETHS Alumni Association.

Treasurer's Report 

Mark Lipowicz (who was elected Treasurer at the January 2022 meeting) reported that elected Treasurer in January. With the help of outgoing Treasurer Wendy Oldeen and Association VP Bob Gold was added to the bank account by midyear and got access to prior financial records, and stated that all is in order.

The Association is solvent with $4,222 in the bank as of 31-Dec-2022 and with no liabilities.   $502 is set aside in the grants fund. In FY 2022, the Association had $132 in expenses including a $100 donation to the ETHS Foundation, and income of $101 for donations to the grants fund.

The Association applied for a sales tax exemption from the State of Illinois on the basis of being an organization for senior citizens, which we all are, and were turned down. The state Revenue Dept. said it was because our main purpose was not to serve seniors and we are open only to some seniors. Mark suggested that the Executive Committee consider charitable donations by the Association. Bob pointed out that the ‘grants fund’ is to assist some classmates with the cost of reunion tickets, and separate from the charitable donations that have been made by the Association to the ETHS Educational Foundation.

Membership Committee Report 

Bob briefly reviewed membership statistics which are little changed since the last statistics report.

Membership data as of 8 January 2023 (Δ from 30 January 2022)

  • 467 (+2) joined web site
  • 643 (-6) not joined
  • 105 (+6) deceased
  • 9 (+4) email bouncebacks (listed e-mail address invalid)
  • 421 (+9) in ETHS Class of 1974 Facebook group

Membership chair Diane Hermanek emphasized the priority of finding missing classmates, and outreach activities. She shared her belief that many of our classmates don’t know what the Association does, including its charitable contributions. An important part of her efforts include sending birthday greeting on the Association’s Facebook page, and issued the call for updates when any classmate learns of the passing of our classmates. Bob highlighted the survey responses by so many willing to volunteer to help the Association’s efforts, and said that prospective volunteers will be contacted.

Report on the 50th Reunion Planning Survey

Bob reviewed key findings point from the survey that was conducted in November of 2022. The 199 responses represent almost 44% of those joined in Class Creator, an outstanding response rate. There is considerable enthusiasm about the 2024 reunion;  67% of those responding say they will or are likely to attend, while 26% are unsure about attending. Significantly, 36 of those considering attending in 2024 are classmates who have attended only one past reunion, or none at all. About half of those responding to the survey live in the Chicago area, the remainder would travel from elsewhere in the U.S.

The most important questions on the survey had to do with identifying the best date for the 2024 reunion, with the knowledge that no date will satisfy everyone. Other factors that were noted about prospective dates were the availability of an ETHS campus tour (not possible until school is in session), and known dates for Northwestern football games. This and past surveys have made clear that our classmates are not interested in scheduling our reunion to coincide with ETHS’s homecoming football weekend.

There were clear preferences for certain reunion activities, especially casual events like the pub crawl and the “main event” gathering that has been traditionally happened on the Saturday of reunion weekend. There was far greater interest in holding the main event in a community center or private club than in using a hotel ballroom, which is a very expensive option.

Logistics Committee Report 

Logistics committee chair Jada Robitaille thanked the Executive Committee for conducting the survey that provided vital data for this effort.

Jada said that the weekend plan is for events on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and echoed the reality that decisions about dates and weekend structure won’t please everyone, but that the goal is to maximize attendance at the reunion. Jada thanked Maria and Diane for their efforts to date to evaluate prospective venues, and previewed the fact that those attending this meeting will vote today on the Association’s recommended date for the 2024 reunion.

Jada invited Diane to speak about two venues that are serious consideration. The most promising is the Glenview Park District’s Park Center, at the Glen in Glenview. The venue is comfortable, beautifully built, cost effective, is ADA accessible, has plenty of spaces for smaller groups to congregate, and has a terrace looking over a lake behind the facility. Another promising venue is the Irish American Heritage Center on the northwest side of Chicago. Both facilities do many events each year, and they really know what they’re doing. Other venues are also under consideration. Bob added that a question on the survey did not result in any new compelling candidate venues to be considered. Carol Remen asked about the Robert Crown Center in Evanston. Bob reported that he and Maria had visited the Crown Center on separate occasions, but that they wouldn’t take reservation more than six months in advance. Double Clutch Brewery was ruled out because of capacity and cost concerns.

Jada related that one prospective date was a clear favorite on the survey: Thursday through Sunday September 12-15, 2024, and that a school tour is expected to be available that weekend. This recommendation by the Association also avoids conflicts with known Northwestern games, as well as religious holidays later in September. Jada opened up voting to all those on the Zoom call, with a single question: “Shall the ETHS Class of 1974 Reunion Association schedule its 50th reunion for the weekend including Saturday, September 14, 2024?” Responses were limited to yes and no. When voting concluded 13 ‘yes’ votes and zero ‘no’ votes were recorded. Bob reported that of those on the Zoom call, only one person did not vote.

Kate confirmed that the proposed date is agreed.

Open Discussion

Richard Lynn thanked the committee for its work, and endorsed the Park Center at the Glen as a venue choice. Carol Remen spoke of her current residence in Glenview, and of the desirability of the Park Center. Jada spoke of our contacts with counterparts in associations for ETHS classes of 1971, 1972 had 50th reunion plans disrupted by the pandemic, and that Jada is in touch with the class of 1973 that is holding its 50th this year. Mark raised the possibility of one or more class gifts to the school, perhaps including an art work by one of our classmates. Additional discussion on class gifts ensued. Maria noted that so far, at least fourteen venues have been visited. Ellen Byrne suggested that the list of visited sites be published, in keeping with the Association’s intent on transparency. Kate confirmed that noted key decisions, like budget and reserving a venue with a deposit, are handled at the Executive Committee level of the Association. Additional discussion on a variety of topics ensued.

Adjournment

With a unanimous vote, Kate adjourned the meeting at 1:19 p.m. CST.