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students to fully explore their innate abilities,” he recalls. “For me art, architecture, and design had long been interests that I developed into mature skill sets in the Art Department. Under the guidance of Gail Laferriere and Rich Connell, the creative process became and remains an unlimited resource for problem solving. Mrs. L’s words ‘be creative’ emerged as my mantra. Whenever I read the Avonian or return for a visit, I’m grateful to the enduring work of the faculty in preserving the Avon community experience, but I also wonder how we can help today’s boys succeed as they reenact many of our experiences and take on new challenges. Regardless of how remarkably we succeeded or deeply we struggled, Avon Old Farms School remains the home of our adolescence and the opportunity to help today’s students shouldn’t be missed.” Mike agrees, also noting the powerful impact the faculty have on the students during that critical time in their lives: “The friendships I forged those first few years are my lasting and treasured bonds with our school. Ken LaRocque was my advisor and a friend. He taught me to find my own Avon, set my own goals, and pursue my own path. I was never the strongest student nor the greatest athlete, so at times Avon was a challenge for me. During these times, there was always a friend or a mentor to encourage and inspire me. Kevin Driscoll was my algebra and geometry teacher. These classes did not come easy, but Kevin never let me slip. I was at his home during study hall or sitting at his table for lunch, cramming for an

upcoming quiz. Looking back, he was teaching me how to work hard and how to put in my all. Junior year, I had Art Custer for U.S. history. I received a B+ with a glowing recommendation. I remember the smile Ken gave me: ‘See, I told you you could do it.’ I was proud. “Ken had taught me how to aspire, and Kevin taught me how to persevere,” states Mike. “Today, at the start of any development project, we aspire to very specific goals. Some projects take months to complete while others take years; it’s having the perseverance to stay the course that makes us successful. Those early Avon lessons in aspiration and perseverance created a strong foundation for my professional approach.” Both men return eagerly to campus as often as they can, to visit with old friends and faculty and honor the campus that gave them their start. This spring, they celebrated their 30th Reunion with classmates and once again left renewed with the spirit of the Avon brotherhood that propels so many young men throughout the rest of their lives. “I’ve been back to campus many times over the years and am so impressed with the improvements to the campus,” says Chris. “I think the school is more beautiful than ever, but it’s the students’ commitment to creating a welcoming community for an increasingly diverse group of boys that I am most impressed by and deeply grateful for. The positive experiences that they create together will last a lifetime and continue to bring them back to our school as supporting alumni.”

The Avonian Spring 2018

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Profile for Avon Old Farms School

The Avonian, Spring 2018  

The Avonian, Spring 2018