WDCSA Newsletter – October 2011


WDCSA Family Brunch/International Potluck
Saturday, October 8 11:30-2:30 pm
National Arboretum

Join fellow Stanford alums and their families for an international potluck and
brunch at the National Arboretum. We were inspired by the workshop and
dinner event Black Chefs in the White House, and would like to extend our
cultural exploration for Stanford food lovers. This event will be held in
conjunction with 64th Annual Orchid Show at the Asian Pavilion of the National
Arboretum where you can enjoy a splendid tour and free workshops.

We invite you to bring an international-themed dish and share with us any food
and culture secrets you know, either from your home country or from your
family members. The theme and story of your dish should follow the concept of
NPR’s Splendid Table http://splendidtable.publicradio.org/.

The event is free of charge and spaces are unlimited. If interested, please RSVP to
Jenny Hou at jennyhou@stanfordalumni.org, so that we will be able to coordinate
the diversity of the dishes brought to share.

There are free educational workshops and gigantic orchid tent sales throughout
the day organized by National Capital Orchid Society. You can tour the display
and attend the workshop either before or after our brunch. Please check out the
64th Annual Orchid Show website for a detailed workshop schedule www.ncos.us/ncos/fallshow.htm.

If you have any questions, contact Jenny Hou at jennyhou@stanfordalumni.org, or
Patricia Marby Harrison at patriciamarbyharrison@gmail.com.

Book Club Discussion
Sunday, October 9 5-8 pm
Fairfax, Va.

The book group will meet at the home of Walter and Diana Wilson to discuss
Cleopatra: A Life by Stacy Schiff. The November book is The Tiger’s Wife by Tea
Obrecht. For information about the group, email Alison Westfall at alisoncolew@hotmail.com

WDCSA and CYA Young Alumni Cheap
Eats Dinner
Tuesday, October 18 7 pm
Logan Tavern
1423 P Street NW (between 14th and 15th)
Washington, D.C.

Join us for October’s Cheap Eats dinner, a great way
to get to know new people and restaurants in the
District. Much like grubwithus, Cheap Eats will
coordinate dinner for 12 young alumni each month. If
you are interested in participating, email
cheap.eats.wdcsa@gmail.com. The first 12 people to
respond will be included and all other responders
will be placed on a waiting list. Every month will
feature a new restaurant and a new group of young
alumni. Attendees are expected to pay for their own
meal. Sign up today! Questions? Please email cheap.eats.wdcsa@gmail.com.

School Choice DC: Is the Charter School
System a Model for the Rest of the US?
Wednesday, October 19 6:30-8:30 pm
Stanford in Washington
2661 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, D.C.

Charter schools in the District of Columbia enroll
over a third of the children in the District. Research
on the markets in other sectors like airlines and
telecommunications have decades of experience on
the development of competition and its effect on the
market. How does the experience of competition in
DC charter schools mirror that prior experience?
(Answer: not so much.) But the killer question is:
Why not? (Hint: The answer will surprise you.) This
conversation will present the latest data on the
quality of education in the District of Columbia, with
reference to other areas of the country, and present
outrageous — but empirically-based — predictions on
the future of education policy in the U.S.

Margaret Raymond is a research fellow at the Hoover
Institution and serves as director of the Center for
Research on Education Outcomes (CREDO), which
analyzes education reform efforts around the
country. Raymond is leading a national study of the
effectiveness of public charter schools, researching
the development of competitive markets and the
creation of reliable data on program performance.
She advises decision-makers at the public and private
sectors, including leading philanthropies. Highly
sought as a negotiator and mediator, Raymond has a
strong record of consensus building and strategic

This event is free. Please RSVP at http://pgnet.stanford.edu/goto/event8387reg Questions? E-mail Kevin Coyne, MS ’02, at kevin.coyne@stanfordalumni.org.


Mark, BA ’09, is a recent transplant to the east coast
and an energetic young member of the Stanford Alumni
community in Washington. He serves on the board of
the D.C. Cardinal Young Alumni and has spearheaded a
project with WDCSA to host dinners connecting
young alums with established alumni in the area (see
Event Spotlight on the next page).

While at Stanford, Mark was a member of the Varsity
Men’s Track and Field Team and received a BA in
International Relations with Honors and a BA in
Communication. Originally from Moscow, Russia, Mark
is currently in his final year of law school at the
American University Washington College of Law here
in Washington, D.C. and hopes to stay in the area after
graduation. Mark spends his free-time geeking out over
politics and writing opinions and editorials for a variety
of news organizations.

Fixing the Energy System: Why Is It So
Wednesday, October 26 6:30-8 pm
Law Offices of Baker & Hostetler
1050 Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 1100
Washington, D.C.

Energy problems and policy proposals remain in the
news; sometimes the news is good, other times it
seems headed in the wrong direction. This
discussion takes a look at the underlying nature of
the problems with energy policy and at some
intriguing approaches to addressing energy-related
problems. Particular attention will be paid to the
"low-hanging fruit" associated with energy efficiency.
Policies to promote renewable energy and energy
efficiency have been gaining momentum throughout
the world, often justified by environmental and
energy security concerns. So why has this lowhanging
fruit not yet been picked and eaten? Is it
really so low hanging? If not, what can we do to
move toward more energy efficiency and renewable
energy policies?

James Sweeney, PhD ’71, is Director of the Precourt
Energy Efficiency Center; Professor of Management
Science and Engineering; Senior Fellow of the
Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, the
Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies,
the Woods Institute for the Environment, and the
Hoover Institution. His professional activities focus
on economic policy and analysis, particularly in
energy, natural resources and the environment. He
is the author of The California Electricity Crisis, an
analytical history of the economic and policy issues
associated with California’s electricity restructuring
and the subsequent crisis. Professor Sweeney is a
Senior Fellow of the U.S. Association for Energy
Economics and a council member and Senior Fellow
of the California Council on Science and

This event is $5 for WDCSA members and $10 for
non-members. To RSVP, follow this link: http://pgnet.stanford.edu/goto/event8393reg. Contact
Jenny Hou, MS ’98, jennyhou@stanfordalumni.org for more information.

Potluck DinnerPotluck DinnerPotluck DinnerEVENT SPOTLIGHT:

Another Great (and Fun) Success! On Saturday night, September 17th,
another fantastic potluck dinner was held in the DC area, this time at the
home of Katharine Mottley (’91), on Capital Hill. Thirteen young and
old(er) alums attended, nearly all with backgrounds or jobs in keeping
with the theme of "Capital Hill/Public Policy."

This was the second potluck of its
kind this year here in the DC area and is a concept created to help find a
way for alums of different generations — but hopefully with similar
interests and
backgrounds —
to meet in a
low-key and fun
venue. So far it
has worked well.
We welcome your participation at the up-coming

The theme for the final dinner of 2011 is slated to
be "Foreign Affairs," but the organizers are open to
suggestions. Please send them your ideas and
people who would want to know about it!

Contact Mark Kogan (’09) — markskogan@gmail.com and Tom Kohn ("83) — kohntom@gmail.com.

Ralls Event
Ralls Event Group Shot
Ralls Event
Ralls Event

An Evening with DC Commissioner on the Arts and Humanities Marsha Ralls

The Washington DC Stanford Association and Stanford Business School Alumni Association’s Washington,
DC/Baltimore Chapter co-hosted a sold-out, Georgetown art viewing and speakers series event on
September 20th. Held at the renown Georgetown contemporary art gallery owned and run by Ms. Marsha
Ralls, the event drew a great and diverse turnout of about 45 alumni, ranging widely from class year 1951 to

We began with cocktails, canapes and, and a private gallery viewing of The Ralls Collection 20th Anniversary
Exhibit, titled "20 Years. 20 Artists." Ms. Ralls shared generously what it was like to apprentice with 20th
Century master painter Robert Rauschenberg, creating a career trajectory, beginning with her work at
Sotheby’s in New York to founding her own gallery here in Washington. She developed an interest in
entrepreneurship that turned to active participation with organizations such as The Aspen Institute and the
worldwide Entrepreneurs Organization. Among several boards, Marsha Ralls serves currently as Director
for the youth business-focused Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, an organization in which the night’s
event co-host and Stanford Business School Alumni Association for the DC-area President Daryn Dodson

Then as a special treat, Marsha introduced us to one of her painters, Lt. Colonel Marine David Richardson,
who spoke with passion and humor about his role in the military and as artist. (In a recent New York Times
review of his critically acclaimed work, the Lt. Colonel described himself as "a painter who fights"). During
the lively Q&A, we purveyed works around the gallery, as Lt. Col. Richardson shared his process and some
of the thinking that went into painting each. (The group event photo with a painting just above is from his
"Trojan War Series".) Ms. Ralls ended with a critical need she perceives for Washington to increase the
support for entrepreneurship intensity, using Stanford and the Silicon Valley businesses surrounding it as

Stanford In the News

• Stanford has created a new interdisciplinary
Research Center on the Prevention of Financial
Fraud within the Center on Longevity.

• Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School graduate Alex
Doll is playing a key role for the #1 ranked
Stanford Women’s Soccer Team.

Upcoming Events in 2012

• Stanford at the Opera will be back in the Spring!
See future newsletters for Spring season details.

This month’s newsletter is available for download in PDF format.