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Dennis Frost

Dennis is the Wen Chao Chen Associate Professor of East Asian Social Sciences at Kalamazoo College. His article “Sporting Disability: Official Representations of the Disabled Body at Tokyo’s 1964 Paralympics” was recently published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Sport and Social Science.

Arthur Bennett (Ben) Schram Jr. ’58

Ben died on August 15, 2014. He matriculated to Kalamazoo College from his hometown of Jackson, Mich. He earned his B.A. in political science and after graduation studied law at the University of Michigan. He spent his career assisting congressional representatives and committees on Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C. Ben had a passion for history and collecting. His home was affectionately known as the Schram Museum.

Malia Johnson ’07 and William Sbach ’07

Malia and William were married on July 26, 2014. Malia works as a curatorial assistant at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and as a baker for Albemarle Baking Company. William is working on his doctorate in political theory at the University of Virginia. Malia earned her bachelor’s degree in American history; she studied abroad in Rome, Italy. William earned his bachelor’s degree in political science, and he also studied abroad in Rome. He earned a master’s degree from the University of Toronto. Malia and William live in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Henry Yaple ’63

Henry recently completed a 30-year labor of love: a bibliography listing the thousands of works printed by a celebrated religious commune formerly located in Benton Harbor, Michigan. In the early 20th century the Israelite House of David (founded by Benjamin and Mary Purnell) was known for its semi-professional baseball team, whose players sported long locks, flowing beards, and major league talent. The Benton Harbor House of David was later re-organized by Mary Purnell as Mary’s City of David.

Yaple earned his bachelor’s degree in English from K and a Master of Library Sciences degree from Western Michigan University. He began his professional life as a librarian and bibliographer at Michigan State University. He retired as Librarian Emeritus from Whitman College (Walla Walla, Washington) and did much of his compilation work during retirement.

According to Sue Moore, who wrote a story about Yaple that appeared in South County News, “The idea for researching and compiling a bibliography stemmed from his studies as a librarian. The sect headed by Benjamin and Mary Purnell, who had only an eighth grade education, realized that it could attract converts with written material outlining its beliefs. They didn’t attribute or date most of their works but published thousands of titles. The published works helped to attract large numbers of men and women to become members, some from as far away as Australia.

“According to Mary’s City of David web site, the sect published The Star of Bethlehem and by 1910 it was in its third edition, having circulated around the world to the churches and followers of the former six Israelite messengers. Their “Eden Springs Park” was in its second successful season in 1910 and on its way to become America’s premiere pre-Disney theme park. The House of David schools would provide education and recreational activities for its children, who soon developed into legendary barn storming baseball teams, known to Satchel Paige as “Jesus boys”, and traveling jazz bands that would catch the attention of America in sweeping nationwide vaudeville circuit tours throughout the 1920s. By the mid-1920s, and in spite of the worldwide economic depression, the Israelite House of David and Mary’s City of David would come to dominate southwestern Michigan’s economy, tourism and agricultural industries.”

Yaple’s retirement activities are not confined to academics. He is an avid skier, and has also published two works on that avocation. He and his wife, whom he met skiing, live out west in ski country.

Christine Ritok ’03

Christine is an associate curator at Historic Deerfield (Deerfield, Massachusetts). She is responsible for managing, studying, and interpreting the museum’s extensive collection of period furniture and for developing exhibits. Her first museum job was at the Detroit Institute of Arts, where she worked for a wonderful curator who encouraged her to continue her studies in an MA program. She went on to obtain a master’s degree in the history of design and decorative arts from Parsons New School For Design in New York and began working at the Museum of the City of New York in 2010, where she undertook a complete study of the institution’s vast furniture collection to bring the associated scholarship up to date.  At K she earned her bachelor’s degree in history and studied abroad in Strasbourg, France. Historic Deerfield is an authentic 18th-century New England village in the Connecticut River Valley of Massachusetts. It’s a museum of history, art, and architecture along a mile-long street laid out in 1671 and still lined with 18th- and 19th-century houses on their original sites.

Marti Goetz ’76

Marti has been named the first executive director of Friends of Bear’s Mill, a nonprofit organization formed in 2000 to ensure the 165-year-old mill (in Greenville, Ohio) is protected and remains open to the public. Marti brings more than 35 years of administration, executive planning, organizational leadership, project management, grant writing, communications, art production, and public awareness experience in the nonprofit sector. At K she earned her bachelor’s degree in art and studied abroad in Caen, France. She obtained a master’s degree in art therapy from Wright State University, and recently completed a doctorate in leadership and organizational change from Antioch University.

LaNesha (McCoy) DeBardelaben ’02

LaNesha is the vice president of assessment and community engagement at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. She engages the museum in substantive community collaborations and initiatives, and she is leading its effort to gain national accreditation. LaNeesha also supervises the museum’s education department. She has served on the board of directors of the Michigan Council for History Education. Her honors include a 2014 Crain Detroit Business “40 Under 40” Award. LaNesha has a passion for public history, culture and the arts, literacy, and education, and she fosters museum programming around these critical areas of impact. She also serves as president of the Detroit Pierians, Inc., a national black women’s arts society. At K she earned her B.A. in history and studied abroad in Kenya. She holds a master’s degree from the University of Missouri and a Master of Library Sciences degree from Indiana University-Bloomington. She is pursuing a Ph.D. at Michigan State University.

David Kyvig ’66

David died unexpectedly on June 22, 2015, from complications of diabetes. David was a Distinguished Research Professor of History at Northern Illinois University (DeKalb). He was a prominent and prolific scholar of 20th century U.S. history who wrote nearly a dozen books and numerous journal articles, several book chapters, and countless encyclopedia entries.

He came to Kalamazoo College from Muskegon, Michigan, and cited the lasting influence on his life and career of several key professors: Wen Chao Chen (who also served as his faculty advisor), John Peterson (whose specialty was African history), and Ivor Spencer (U.S. history). David spent his career service quarter working in the office of Michigan Senator Philip Hart during the middle of the debate on the Civil Rights Act of 1964. He studied abroad in Muenster, Germany, and used that opportunity to study and listen to what Germans found noteworthy and intriguing about American history. His Senior Individualized Project (which focused on the U.S. Senate during the “100 Day Session” of President Franklin Roosevelt’s first term) immersed him into primary historical research, and he loved it.

After graduating with his B.A. in history (cum laude), David earned a Ph.D. in American history from Northwestern University. He spent a year in Washington, D.C., as an archivist in the Office of Presidential Libraries at the National Archives. He began his college teaching career in 1971 at the University of Akron. In 1999 he joined the faculty at Northern Illinois. He also taught as a Fulbright Fellow at the University of Tromso in Norway (1987-88) and was a resident fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

The majority of David’s research and writing focused on the U.S. constitutional amendment process. His book Explicit and Authentic Acts: Amending the U.S. Constitution, 1976-1995 earned the Bancroft Prize, the most prestigious book-publishing accolade for American history. More recently he published the highly regarded book The Age of Impeachment: American Constitutional Culture Since 1960.

David was the subject of a LuxEsto story (Spring 2002) in which he cited the fundamental importance of history, “how looking at the past can be useful in coming to terms with contemporary moments, particularly moments of crisis.” He attributed his appreciation for that insight to his experiences at Kalamazoo College. “K,” he said, “took a provincial kid from West Michigan and exposed him to the possibilities of life. Working in Washington, D.C., going abroad, being surrounded by so many bright people, new ideas, new ways of looking at things—and discovering that I could hold my own in that environment—instilled a confidence in me that I could handle new experiences.”

David is survived by his wife, Christine Worobec. David was instrumental in establishing at Kalamazoo College the Wen Chao Chen Endowed Professorship of East Asian Social Sciences. Christine has established an endowed scholarship at K to honor David. It is called the “Dr. David Kyvig ’66 Memorial Scholarship for the Study of History,” to which alumni, classmates and friends are invited to contribute.

David Barclay, the Margaret and Roger Scholten Professor of International Studies

In recent months David published three articles.

“Preußen in europäischer und amerikanischer Sicht.” In Preußen als Kulturstaat im 19. Jahrhundert, 57-66. Edited by Gisela Mettele and Andreas Schulz. Paderborn: Ferdinand Schöningh, 2015.

“Das ‘monarchische Projekt’ Friedrich Wilhelms IV. von Preußen.” In Inszenierung oder Legitimation?/Monarchy and the Art of Representation: Die Monarchie in Europa im 19. und 20. Jahrhundert.Ein deutsch-englischer Vergleich, 35-44. Edited by Frank-Lothar Kroll and Dieter J. Weiß. Prinz-Albert Studien/Prince Albert Studies 31. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, 2015.

“Kein neuer Mythos. Das letzte Jahrzehnt West-Berlins.” Aus Politik und Zeitgeschichte 65, no. 46 (9 November 2015): 37-42.

David also published a book review in the American Historical Review, and has another review scheduled for publication in the Journal of Modern History.

In the fall he traveled to Madison, Wisconsin, to deliver two invited lectures on the history of West Berlin a quarter century after German unification.. The first lecture was at the Vantage Point Subscription Club in downtown Madison, and the second was at the Center for European Studies at the University of Wisconsin.

He also gave the 2015 Moritz Lecture at Kalamazoo College. He spoke about the music scene and its importance in Cold War Berlin.