Helene Gonski (Kornovsky) Head Girl. Helene mentioned how often she still thinks of her wonderful years at Kingsmead as a boarder. Helene is so grateful for the broad education she received. Helene has written books on grandparents and run groups for grandparents. She has five grandchildren, and she thinks that grandchildren will be the topic for her next book. She lives in Australia.
Six old Kingsmeadians from the class of 1950 met up in October for their 65th reunion. They were Pam Jameson (Kimbell), Gerry Gallow (Shield), Binkey Matter (Hams), Donna Frost (Airth), Ursula Ratcliffe, Irene Menell (Mandleson). Their classmates Joss Berman and Marita Glenton live in Cape Town.
Merileen Marsberg (Wepener). Merileen recently turned 80. Her family organised a trip for her to England. Two of her children, Barbara and Kevin and their families live there as well as her elder daughter and husband James were there from Perth and her eldest son Alan came from Johannesburg. They spent a week together in France. It was the first time they’ve been together in 13½ years. Merileen lives in East London in a retirement home.
Mary Cassidy (Barkhuysen). Mary lives in Reading in Berkshire and she works as a school librarian in an independent primary school. All of her children are over 21 but still living at home. Two of her children work in London. Church commitments are an important part of her life. Margy Spradbury, Mandy Spiegel, Jenny Finlay and Rose Long live in the South of England and they meet occasionally. Even more occasionally they meet up with MA Ruticiman from Australia. Margy Thennis who lives in Umhlanga Rocks visited Mary in London recently too.
Claire Gebers (Heney). Claire has lived in Brisbane for the past eight years. She works as a pathologist in clinical microbiology and is involved in the diagnosis of infectious diseases. Claire enjoys travel, photography, Bible Study and teaching (www.revealingyeshua.org.za). Claire can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org.
June Denny (Jameson). June lives in the UK. June was Head Girl in her year, even though she confesses to have been very naughty. June had the privilege of doing the reading at Ms Paver’s funeral. The birth announcement of quite a few of June’s friends classmates were mentioned in her 1958 magazine too.
Shan Muller (Marais). Shan has been married to Dave Muller for 33 years. They have two children, Garreth and Ashleigh. Garreth is married to Monika and they have a son Dylan. Shan did a law degree and she has been doing the school fee collections exemptions for Bryanston High School for the past 14 years. Shan lives on a farm in Lanseria where they farm honey and sheep as a hobby for when they retire. Shan can be contacted on email@example.com.
Lisa de St. Croix. Lisa lives in Santa FE, New Mexico, USA. Lisa has two sons Noah 24 and Simon 22. She has published an award winning Tarot deck and Lisa has exhibited her paintings . She teaches art workshops internationally. Lisa can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Patricia Taylor (Vieyra). Patricia is married with four grown up children. Two are girls and two are boys. The boys are studying at Stellenbosch and the girls are working. Patricia lives in Cape Town. Patricia and her husband own the Henry Taylor Gallery and they deal in SA investment art. Patricia runs a blog/website with her two daughters called Life Retreat which is aimed to inspire their readers to live healthy, happy lives. Patricia published a book last year and is writing another book on motherhood.
Bev Jacobs (Collins). Bev pursues a career in Human Resources. Bev has been with TFE (The Foschini Group) since 1990. Bev is currently the Head of Human Resources for the Africa Division. Bev travels to Ghana, Kenya, Zambia, Swaziland, Mozambique, Botswana, Lesotho, Nigeria and Namibia. Bev has twin boys who are 16 and are at Rondebosch Boys High School, where they live in the Cape.
Ceri Von Ludwig (Tilch). Ceri practises as a divorce, family and mediations attorney. She has her own practice in Sandton. Ceri has been married for 16 years to Carl who is an aircraft maintenance engineer. They both ride horses of which they have 4 and 6 dogs.
I graduated in 2014 from Syracuse University’s top-ranking creative writing MFA programme, where I worked with poets Michael Burkard, Christopher Kennedy, Brooks Haxton and Bruce Smith, novella expert Brian Evenson, novelists Arthur Flowers, Rivka Galchen and Dana Spiotta, visual artist Juan Juarez, memoirist and poet Mary Karr, writer-activist Minnie-Bruce Pratt and short story writer George Saunders. Jonathan Franzen and Zadie Smith visited. I have also worked with veteran writing teacher Lesley Cowling in Johannesburg. And online with short-short writer and poet Barbara Henning and personal narratives teacher extraordinaire Anja Achtenberg. The gifts to me of these devoted teachers, inspiring artists and high order human beings are what I want to share in my Highveld Reading and Writing Studios.
My fiction won me a fellowship at the Norman Mailer Writers Colony, where I worked with Jeffery Renard Allen. I also won an artist’s residency at the Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild. Caine Prize winner EC Osondu awarded my 2013 short story “Re-Enactments” the Stone Canoe prize for an emerging fiction writer in Upstate New York. My first work was published in ITCH in 2010. In 2010, I was also ITCH’s e-intern.
At Syracuse University, I taught critical reading and academic writing to undergraduates, as well as a literature appreciation class. I taught fiction to a summer class for high school students. My MFA in Creative Writing required participation in three semester-long workshops, which included written and verbal presentations on my fellow writers’ work, and focused group discussions on aspects of literary craft. I took classes in the short story, memoir, Proust, Ulysses, the novella, contemporary American fiction, Western poetry, the visual arts, music and writing, and literary hoodoo, among others. These seminars required close reading, and written and verbal presentations.
The anthology I developed and co-edited, Queer Africa: New and Selected Fiction, won the prestigious 2014 Lambda Literary Award for a fiction anthology, the first African book to win a “Lammy”. Queer Africa 2 is in the making.
I have 20 years’ experience as a freelance technical editor. Among my specialities is Plain English, and I am highly regarded for my interpretive skills. My clients include the South African National Treasury and other government departments, civil society organisations, research institutes, museums, and individual writers. I have international accreditation in copy editing, and I am a member of the UK Society for Editors and Proofreaders and the South African Professional Editors’ Guild.
Linda Courtenay (Kelly). Linda is married to Tim. Linda has two daughters at Kingsmead. Linda studied at UCT and then at Wits.
Diana Sanderson. Diana is currently working at Camerastuff as a PA/Project Manager. Diana teaches swimming and does professional photography. Diana recently caught up with Mayuri Mulji (Madhu), Catrina Henderson, Emily Moslein, Mpho Mogotsi and Angela Zeibari (Henwood). Diana was the recent winner of the Johannesburg Heritage Photography Exhibition. Her winning image was of one Art Deco building taken during a photowalk with the Johannesburg photowalkers.
Vicki Straw has started her own recruitment agency supplying top talent to the IT industry. Vicki worked at Dimension Data for 15 years. (www.emptychairtalent.co.za).
Kirsten McKenzie. Kirsten is an Associate Professor at the University of Sydney, Australia. Kirsten’s most recent book will be published by Cambridge University Press in January 2016. Imperial underworld: An escaped convict and the transformation of the British Colonial Order. Cathy Haslam and Kirsten recently reconnected and Kezia Lange and Kirsten remain very close friends.
Kirsten Legg (Jasper), Chairlady OKA. Kirsten has three children Emma (15), Bradley (5) and Jessica (2). Kirsten opened a florist from home last year where she tags the name of the flower and its meaning to create a message. Kirsten can be contacted on email@example.com. Kirsten also runs a fertility support group in Johannesburg, anyone struggling to conceive is most welcome to attend. Kirsten enjoys being so involved in the life of Kingsmead and has enjoyed connecting with so many dynamic Old Girls.
Jacqui Lion (Cachet). Jacqui is living in Sydney with her three boys. Jacqui works as a property auctioneer for a leading real estate agency.
Hayley Pienaar (Schönborn). Hayley is the Kingsmead College Director of Marketing and The Kingsmead Book Fair. Hayley has three children aged 16, 13 and 9. Hayley loves being back at Kingsmead and still sees Kingsmead friends from the 1980’s including Alice Rennie, Claire Walsh, Christina Beatty, Jacqui Lion-Cachet, Sue Morris and Samantha Smirin.
Left to right
Janet Barrow, Julia Green, Nicky McGaw, Michelle Frangos, Shannon Drysdale, Gemma Stowell, Lara Ehrentraut, Kate Waller, Adrienne Scott, Angela Parnell, Julie Saxton
Caroline Berry (Waddams). Caroline taught autistic and visually impaired children for six years then started her catering business called Caroline in the Kitchen. Caroline can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org, www.carolineinthekitchen.co.za or 083 963 8974. She does catering for any event. Caroline has two daughters Emma 7, and Lucy 4, they are in Bluebells and Grade 1 at Kingsmead. She enjoys continuing the Kingsmead legacy through her girls.
Merryn Robertson (Weedon). Merryn is working as a paediatric physiotherapist in Auckland New Zealand. Merryn has lived there for almost seven years. She loves being a mom to her two busy boys.
Aimee Fowler (McCallum). Aimee owns and runs Aimee Lloyd Macaroons where she makes delicious authentic French macaroons for restaurants, corporate clients and private customers too. Aimee learnt the art of making macaroons in Paris, and she loves what she does. She can be contacted on 082 391 5959 or email@example.com.
Jackie Righi (Righi-Boyd). Jackie is the daughter of ex Assaggi owner Luciana Righi. Jackie went to study industrial and organisational psychology at UCT. After her under grad she completed an honours in Entrepreneurial Development through UTC’s Genesis program. It didn’t take Jackie long in corporate for her to realise it wasn’t the creative environment she was seeking. So in 2013, Jackie started a pastry course through the Food and Beverage Institute in Johannesburg. Thereafter Jackie started creating cakes and cupcakes from home for special occasions, while still working full time. In 2014 Jackie quit corporate for good and went to Italy for four months to study Italian pastries. Jackie has found her passion and now she puts it on a plate for all to share at Dolci Café in Craighall Park (corner Clarence and Lancaster Avenue, open Tuesday to Sunday for breakfast and lunch) www.dolci.co.za.
Jeandre Botha. Jeandre lives in London and is working at KPMG LLP as an audit manager. Jeandre can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Laura Katherine Hayward. Laura matriculated with seven distinctions. Laura has graduated with a BSC honours with distinctions in mathematics from UCT. Laura then went on to the University of Edinburgh when she was awarded a distinction for her MSC in Mathematics. Laura was offered the Dean’s scholarship at Columbia University in New York to do her doctorate in Mathematics, being one of a few international students to be offered such a scholarship in Mathematics. Laura has just completed her second year out of five. Laura still enjoys acting, art, music and is still very interested in philosophy. New York offers so much in this regard.
Phindile Sithole-Spong was chosen as a #21Icons for her work as an HIV Activist.
“21 Icons is a visual celebration of the lives of men and women who have shaped the world around them for the better. Inspired by the life of Nelson Mandela, it tells the stories of people who have continued his legacy – whose lives have made the world a better place. The project seeks to celebrate those who have achieved success and widespread recognition, as well as individuals whose work has been conducted without prior acclaim.”
Ashleigh van der Berg. Ashleigh opened her own nail salon in the heart of Parkhurst’s trendy 4th Avenue. The nail salon is called State Nail Boutique and is situated at 25a 4th Avenue, Parkhurst. www.statenailboutique.co.za. Ashleigh has a BA degree in Commercial Fashion design from Lisof and she is a qualified MAC makeup artist. She completed a six month internship at Marie Claire in 2015.
Thameenah Vadi. Thameenah is in her 3rd year of BAccSci at Wits. She is thoroughly enjoying her career path. Thameenah recently signed with KPMG and will be doing her articles once she finishes her fourth year.
Taken from the 1958 school magazine. A poem written by Nan Shimwell thanks to June Denny for finding it. I’ve included the lines that appealed to me. Hope you enjoy reading it. Some things never change.
“Kingsmeadians come in assorted sizes, weights and colours. They are found everywhere, on top of climbing on, swinging from, running around or travelling to. A Kingsmedian is truth with a fancy hairstyle. Wisdom with ink on her tunic, she likes sweets, cake, holidays and rock and roll, dances, boys, auto cycles, weekends and most of all her friends. A Kingsmedian is like a box of assorted sweets.”