WDCSA Newsletter – June 2019

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

Events Calendar

  • June 11 – Keeping Up With…
  • June 15 – PAC-12 Night with the Nationals
  • July 12 – Boomers to Busters Rooftop Soiree
  • July 13 – Baltimore Book Club Summer BBQ and Discussion
  • July 14 – Washington DC Book Club Discussion
  • July 14 – WDCSA Alumni Potluck Dinner Series
  • July 27-August 4 – Citi Open Tennis
  • August 4 – DC United Game

Member Spotlight

Laetitia Walendom

Laetitia Walendom

Laetitia Walendom (’15 BA with Honors in Urban Studies and ’18 MA African Studies) recently relocated from the Bay Area to the DMV area.

Laetitia lived in several countries and experienced civil war and unrest before Stanford. She was born in the Ivory Coast to Chadian parents. In elementary school, Laetitia spent half of the school year in Dallas, where her father was working, and the other half in the Ivorian capital,  Abidjan, where her family lived. Laetitia quickly learned to adjust and toggle between the American school system and the Francophone school system.

When the Ivorian civil war broke out, her family relocated to Tunisia.  After three years, the family moved to Madagascar. Civil unrest in Madagascar prompted the family to return to Tunisia. Three years later,  Tunisia had its own revolution and Laetitia moved to the United States to attend George School, a Quaker boarding school in Pennsylvania. It was there that she met a classmate from Menlo Park who encouraged her to apply to Stanford.  After visiting the campus in the autumn of her senior year and experiencing the Bay Area weather and beautiful campus, Laetitia decided to apply.

As a freshman, Laetitia was in East Flo as part of the SLE program. Her sophomore year, she lived in Roth (an all-women’s self-op). She spent her junior year at EBF (aka “The Enchanted Broccoli Forest”) and wrapped up her senior year at Kairos where she was a staff resident.

Since graduating in 2018, Laetitia embarked on an AfroEurAsian trip to Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Chad, Portugal, Spain, Croatia, Germany, Thailand, and Vietnam. The trip back home to Chad gave her time to reconnect with her extended family and reset her priorities.

While conducting her thesis research in Madagascar, she spent a lot of time thinking about the African continent’s infrastructural and political shortcomings.  As such, she is actively exploring opportunities in sustainable infrastructure with a strong policy and advocacy element. Since returning stateside in January, Laetitia has been working on a foundation in her grandparents’ honor to support Chadian women’s access to higher education domestically and, eventually, abroad.

When asked about her best advice for the Stanford community, Laetitia says “Always venture into the unfamiliar, there is no better way to learn.”

Laetitia appreciates the little things in life, including any form of frozen dairy desserts.  So far, she has explored Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams in Washington DC and Carmen’s Italian Ice in Rockville. If you have a recommendation, she would love to hear about it and can be reached at walendom@alumni.stanford.edu.

If you have suggestions for other alumni in the DMV area to profile in upcoming newsletters, please send them to Jasmaine McClain (jasmaine.mcclain@gmail.com) or Stephanie Tan (stephanie.tan@stanfordalumni.org).

Event Spotlight

An Evening with the Ambassador at the Embassy of the Dominican Republic

Forty Stanford alums were warmly welcomed to the Embassy of the Dominican Republic by Ambassador Jose Tomas Perez and his staff on May 2nd. The embassy, a lovely old mansion in DC’s Kalorama neighborhood, was decorated with colorful Dominican cultural objects and country-information wall panels in readiness for the annual Embassy Open Houses two days later.

Education attache Angie Martinez offered a power point briefing on the embassy’s work and on her country’s multifaceted relationship with the United States.  Ambassador Perez asked embassy staff and Stanford guests to introduce themselves and their fields, which inspired conversations. A rich array of Dominican food prepared by Los Hermanos Restaurant was available throughout the festive evening.

Upcoming Events

Keeping Up With

Tuesday, June 11, 7:15 pm
Private Residence
Washington, DC

Keeping Up With… is the modern-day monthly salon for Stanford Alumni in the DC area to discuss articles and podcasts. 

This month, the salon will be “Keeping Up With… the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.”  We will discuss two podcast episodes that explore the events of June 28, 1969 at the Stonewall Inn in NYC – a night that many credit with sparking the gay rights movement – and the people that helped shape a revolution.  

The two podcast episodes can be found here:

To RSVP, email Patricia Arty’10 patriciaarty@alumni.stanford.edu or James Barton ’09, JD’15 jamesbarton09@gmail.com

PAC 12 Night at the Nationals

Saturday, June 15, 4:05 pm
Nationals Park
Washington, DC

Join the rest of the PAC-12 Alumni of DC for our 4th annual PAC-12 Night with the Washington Nationals! This year, the Nationals will be facing off against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Nationals will also be celebrating Star Wars Night, with an Obi “Sean” Kenobi Bobblehead for the first 10,000 fans.


We have arranged for special discounted tickets ($23) that include an $8 concession credit that can be used at the game. Seats are reserved in Section 238 in Center/Right Field. We sold out of our ticket allotment twice last year, so be sure to get your tickets early as we expect to sell out again!

Buy Your Tickets Here: https://groupmatics.events/event/DCPac12. Wednesday, June 12 is the deadline to purchase tickets.

If you have questions, email PAC12DC@gmail.com.

Boomers to Busters Rooftop Soiree

Friday, July 12, 6-8:30 pm
1730 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC

Take a break from the summer heat on a private rooftop taking in one of the most exquisite views anywhere in Washington: an unobstructed southern panoramic view encompassing the Jefferson and Washington Memorials, White House and the Capitol. Relax with people who took tests run off of mimeograph machines.

Light dinner buffet of sandwiches and salads, and soft drinks included with registration fee. Cash bar available (no credit cards) for wine and beer.

The “Mute Object Contest” will be back by popular demand.

Early bird registration is $35 until June 23rd; then regular registration is $40 until July 7th; after that late registration is $50. To register, visit: https://uchicagodc.us7.list-manage.com/track/click?u=515a61e1754e28a38c37a4270&id=c139b6d203&e=d45c447441.  

For more information about BtoB:  https://dc.uchicagoalumni.org/boomerstobusters

If you have questions, contact boomerstobusters@gmail.com

WDCSA Alumni Potluck Dinner Series

Sunday, July 14, 5:30-7:30 pm
4948 Sentinel Dr, Bethesda, MD

Join WDCSA for the next installment of the potluck dinner series. The topic of this dinner is summer sports, and women’s soccer in particular.  Bring your favorite tailgate food or drink to share. Bring a friend and make a friend!  

The host for this event is Chris Shinkman, P ‘98. Questions? Contact Vered Sharon at 240-620-7706 vered.sharon@gmail.com OR Chris Shinkman at 240-383-8357 c.shinkman@verizon.net

The Guard at the front entrance to Sumner Village has been notified that you will be coming.  We will be at the front door of the building (4948) to greet you when you arrive.

Space is limited to the first 15 people. Adults only, please. Register at: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/20F0B49AFAB2AA1F58-wdcsa1

Citi Open Tennis

Saturday, July 27-Sunday, August 4
16th & Kennedy NW, Washington, DC

The 2019 Citi Open is an ATP World Tour 500 tournament, making it one of the top 20 men’s tournaments in the world.

We have the same six platinum box seats to all sessions as in previous years (Aisle 36, Section 3). The seats are at the end of the court and very close to the court and provide access to the air-conditioned Emirates Garden Club restaurant. We also have six upper level seats (Section 6, Row N, Seats 26-31) near the top of the stadium in the corner.

The featured matches are generally held on the stadium court where seating is reserved, with the remainder in the outside courts where seating is open. Tickets also include the women’s WTA International Level Event to be held on the same courts during this week.

Please email bill@billpegram.com indicating the number and type of tickets desired, the session, and parking passes desired. Bill will process requests in the order they are received and confirm availability by return email and provide instructions for payment.

  • Sat 7/27 (qualifying) 10am $11 box, $6 upper
  • Sun 7/28 (qualifying) 10am $17 box, $8 upper
  • Mon 7/29 2pm $38 box, $14 upper
  • Tue 7/30 2pm $45 box, $16 upper
  • Wed 7/31 2pm $52 box, $18 upper
  • Thurs 8/1 2pm $60 box, $22 upper
  • Fri 8/2 2pm (quarterfinals) $50 box, $19 upper
  • Fri 8/2 7pm (quarterfinals) $74 box, $23 upper
  • Sat 8/3 (semifinals) 12:00pm $70 box, $21 upper
  • Sat 8/3 (semifinals) 7pm $91 box, $25 upper
  • Sun 8/4 (finals) 12:30pm $99 box, $25 upper

We have two parking passes available for each session at $20/pass.

The following link, www.wdcsa.org/tennis, will be updated to show current availability as ticket requests are received.

DC United Game

Sunday, August 4, 7:30 pm  (Gates open at 6)
Audi Stadium, Washington, DC


Stanford soccer fans will be gathering for the DC United match vs. Philadelphia Union at the exciting new Audi Field in downtown Washington.  We have reserved a limited number of tickets at the special price of $25 each in Section 117, Rows 30-37.  Click here for a view from the seats!   And click here to purchase tickets: https://fevo.com/edp/DC-United-vs-Philadelphia-Union–Stanford-Alumni-Night-rrwHEQm!

Questions?  Contact Chris Shinkman at C.Shinkman@verizon.net 240-383-8357

Stanford in the News

  • On May 18, Frost Amphitheater officially launched in a big way with Stanford Concert Network’s eighth annual Frost Music and Arts Festival featuring solo R&B co-headliners Kali Uchis and Jorja Smith with opener DJ Mia Carucci.

WDCSA Book Club Corner

Washington DC Book Club Discussion

Sunday, July 14, 5-7:45 pm
Silver Spring, Md

The book group will discuss Main Street: The Story of Carol Kennicott, by Sinclair Lewis.  All are welcome to join the discussion and participate in the potluck dinner.

In 1930, Sinclair Lewis was the first Nobel Prize winner in Literature and his best-known work was the biting, satirical Main Street. The heroine, Carol Milford, is a progressive, optimistic,  young librarian who moves to her husband’s small childhood home, Gopher Prairie. The town is drab, the inhabitants small-minded. She sets out to modernize the town with her progressive values but is met with derision at every turn. 

For more information, contact Ann Cowgill ’82 at ann.m.cowgill@gmail.com.  

Baltimore Book Club Discussion

Saturday, July 13, 6 pm
Private Residence
Baltimore, MD

The July selection is The Threat:  How the FBI Protects America in the Age of Terror and Trump by Andrew McCabe, who began his FBI career in 1996, reached the rank of Deputy Director of the FBI in 2016, and was fired by the Trump administration in 2018, 26 hours before his scheduled retirement.  This book gives us a glimpse into the inner workings of the FBI, and a glimpse into the mind of Trump.  

We are having a summer BBQ!  Spouses and significant others are welcomed.  Please bring a dish to share.  The September selection is My Dear Hamilton:  A Novel of Eliza Schuyler Hamilton by Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie.

Questions/RSVP: Helene Myers, Ph.D., P’14, at cedarhouse@comcast.net