May 2021
Academy Alumni in the News

Savannah Cofer '16 (pictured) received the Student-Taught Course Teaching Award from Rice University. Each year, Rice honors members of the university community who have served students through outstanding teaching, dedication and service. Savannah is pursuing a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering at Stanford School of Engineering. Also included in this month's press clips are Caroline Anders '17, Avishar Barua '05, Grant Berliner '17, Brian Brooks '87, Courtney Deena '13, Ian Dumain '95, Rachel Hofstetter '03, Stacie Lieberman '98 and Emily Sinkhorn '00 as well as obituaries for Robert "Andy" Lape '82 and William F. "Bill" Reiland '50.

If you have clips (either in print or on the web) to pass along for future issues, please send them to Director of Alumni Relations Melissa Clarke Beckett at
Engaging Alumni Volunteer Opportunity  
All alumni are invited to help with a fun and exciting middle school project. Laura Miller's eighth grade class will be conducting its Cold War Mock Trials later this month, and Laura is looking for alumni to serve as judges. This year's hybrid in-person and digital format will allow any graduate from across the world to participate.
There is no need to prepare or research the history of Cold War events prior to participating as the judging should be based on the students' presentations.

The mock trials will take place on Friday, May 21, and consist of three one-hour trials. Volunteers can judge all three trials, two trials or just one trial. Trial 1 will take place from 11 a.m. to noon EDT, Trial 2 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. EDT and Trial 3 from 1:45 to 2:45 p.m. EDT. Judges participating in-person are invited to campus to view the program in the Schoedinger Theatre with lunch provided between Trial 1 and Trial 2. Judges participating remotely will be sent the Zoom link(s) prior to the trial(s) they are judging. More details about the trials and judging criteria will be shared with alumni volunteers.

Please contact Melissa Clarke Beckett at if you are interested or would like more information.
All Day 4 CA - Thank You!
Thank you to everyone who joined in All Day 4 CA on April 29-30! It was uplifting to see our community come through in a most incredible way to support and honor our students, faculty and staff. Vikings have proven once again that great things can happen when we come together. A record 1,060 Vikings from 34 states (and two other countries!) contributed an astounding $742,767. In case you missed it, check out this year's #AllDay4CA video featuring Mandy Mallott '03 and Anil Patel '06 who reflect on how their Academy experience prepared them for their future, and six current students who share how much they appreciate being in school this year.
School News
As members of the Dajj String Quartet, Columbus Academy sophomore Kate Fornshell (with cello on far left) and junior Anna Linder (holding a violin on far right) won the silver medal after competing as one of six national finalists in the St. Paul National String Quartet Competition last month! The Dajj String Quartet was also a finalist in the Coltman Chamber Music Competition and has been selected for this month's Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. To top it off, Kate and Anna have been invited to study this summer with some of the top chamber musicians and faculty from around the world at the Encore Chamber Music Intensive.
A dozen upper-schoolers from Columbus Academy recently competed in the Ohio Speech and Debate Association 2021 State Finals. Out of 87 teams from all across Ohio, Academy's squad placed 34th with 124.12 points, which was fourth-best among Central Ohio schools behind only Dublin Jerome (19th), Upper Arlington (21st) and Olentangy (32nd). The highlight of the tournament was Academy junior Reyha Satish finishing as state runner-up in Declamation out of 66 competitors. "The judges were moved by her passion and personal connection to her speech," reported Nate Stewart, who coaches the team alongside Pat Hogan. Teammates also reached the quarterfinals in the categories of Program Oral Interpretation (sophomore Alexis Cunningham for a powerful interpretation of literary pieces written by and for Black women) and Congressional Debate (juniors Yashu Tanneru and Jaswanth Vandrasi as well as sophomore Cory Wu).
Academy physics teacher Tamara Markey, who joined our upper school faculty last August, was named the 2021 Outstanding Industrial Engineer by Purdue University! "It was indeed an honor to receive this recognition and for my body of professional work to be considered amongst the significant and many accomplishments of others who have also received this distinction," said Tamara, who earned both her bachelor's and master's degrees from Purdue and was the Indiana Teacher of the Year in 2019. "I am very thankful to be a part of the CA community as a parent and teacher. I am proud of this school's dedication to developing the whole child academically, socially and emotionally. During these unprecedented times in which we live, I feel very fortunate to be here at Columbus Academy."
Sports News
Our final athletic signing celebration of the school year will take place this Wednesday, May 5. Please watch live ( starting at 2:00 p.m. as we honor the following spring NCAA commitments: Manny Eribo (track and field at The University of Rochester), Sam Huyghe (football at Lehigh University), Suzy L'Hommedieu (field hockey at St. Lawrence University), Kayla McClendon (basketball at Berea College), Durell Moultrie (football at John Carroll University) and Luke Nester (cross country and track and field at the United States Naval Academy). 
In what turned out to be Craig Yakscoe's final campaign as head coach of our swimming and diving program, nine AquaVikes earned All-Ohio honors by placing in the top 16 at the state meet and 17 received all-league recognition. "After the season, I made the decision to step down as head coach," said Craig, who led the Vikings for three seasons in the mid-90s in addition to the last 16, during which his squads won 10 league championships on the girls' side and a dozen MSL-Ohio to go along with five district titles for the boys. He was named District Coach of the Year in 2015 and Central Ohio Coach of the Year in 2019. "It was not an easy decision and one that I had been giving some thought to the last several years. This year felt like the right time." Craig has also been the head coach of our boys golf program for the last seven years and will continue in that role as well as a beloved PE and aquatics teacher at Academy. "I will certainly miss the student-athletes in their journeys to become better swimmers and divers while also becoming better young men and women," he added. "I will be spending more time with my family as I take these next steps in my journey. I want to thank everyone in the swim/dive community for their professional collegiality and friendships. I also want to thank the Academy community, Athletic Director Jason Singleton and Head of School Melissa Soderberg for giving me this awesome opportunity to fulfill my professional goals. Lastly, I am thankful for my family for of their support, encouragement, patience and understanding while I was in this role."
Send In Your Class Notes 
We love keeping in touch with our alumni, and we want to hear all of your latest news. Here are some of the updates we are looking for:

New family additions
Big moves
New jobs
New schools, titles or degrees
Exciting trips or accomplishments
General updates

We also love pictures, so you can send those along as well. Fill out our class notes form at or send via email to to be sure your message is included in an upcoming issue of Experience, the school's newly redesigned magazine!
Stay Connected!