Elliot Smith ’50
"Pennington changed my life. I learned to study, accept others for what they are, respect teachers and leaders and realize that the world is very small and very competitive. The high points of my four years were my induction into the Tri-Steps, the School's honorary society, and my acceptance to The Wharton School of Business and Finance. My Pennington education allowed me to gain acceptance to Penn, which probably would not have happened if I had remained in Syracuse attending public high school. I was asked to join the Board in 1973 and served until 1993 when I faced a health issue.
"All of us that attended college think that we are obligated to support our college, I agree, however, I ask you one question . . . How did you earn your acceptance to college? Was it the education you received at Pennington? I know in my case the answer is YES. If so, then why not support Pennington in a meaningful and lasting way. A simple bequest to the Pennington School can affect generations of Pennington students for many, many years. Please consider joining me in the Francis Harvey Green Society. "
Peter Brown ’65
"I went to Pennington in 1963 as a junior and graduated in 1965; I attended summer school prior to starting in ’63, so my involvement is 46 years. I have always kept in touch and tried to support the annual fund and capital improvements. I have witnessed many changes and improvements to the Pennington campus and the School’s focus and programs."
"Going to Pennington was life-changing. I struggled in public high school. At Pennington I learned to focus and learned good study habits, self-discipline, and self-esteem through academic success. I had the opportunity to develop leadership skills in sports and hall activities and was privileged to be a proctor. These experiences provided the skills to transition easily into college while others were finding their way. All of these opportunities provided the foundation that allowed me to have a successful college and graduate education and move into my chosen career as a hospital administrator and CEO."
Peter's parents, Mr. and Mrs. H. Walcott Brown, Jr. are also FHG Society members.
Colonel Albert Navas, USAF, Ret. ’48
A staunch supporter of The Pennington School since he graduated in 1948, Colonel Albert Navas, USAF, Ret., says Pennington "gave me the tools to succeed at the Virginia Military Institute under a very strict and disciplined environment. Those tools were good study habits, solid course instruction, and integrity. I believe in the values and strong leadership of my alma mater. The Pennington School is soaring to new heights!"
Colonel Navas has served on the School’s Board of Trustees and Board of Advisors. He is the Class Fund Director for the Class of 1948 and was instrumental in rallying the troops to attend the class’s 50th reunion in 1998.
A member of the Francis Harvey Green Society, Colonel Navas recently spearheaded the construction of the new Veterans Monument erected on campus in the spring of 2009 and is the 2009 recipient of the Order of the Tower Award. The Order of the Tower is an important part of Pennington School history and recognizes alumni or non-alumni who have provided outstanding service to The Pennington School. Nominations are taken from the School community, and the Board of Directors of the Alumni Association makes the recommendation for this award to the School’s Board of Trustees.
Colonel Navas resides in McLean, VA, with his wife of 57 years, Barbara. They have four children, 13 grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.
John and Carol Kuhlthau
John Kuhlthau, member of The Pennington School Board of Trustees, states, "We support The Pennington School and have upgraded our level of support by designating TPS as direct beneficiary of John’s I.R.A., an account that he built over the course of his working years. (We are both now retired.) We didn’t make this decision hastily or impulsively. It was a result of some reflection."
"You see, neither of us attended or graduated from The Pennington School, so our natural loyalties are elsewhere, but we did attend church summer camps at Pennington in the 1950s when we were teenagers. Of course, we also had friends who attended The Pennington School."
"The thing that really impressed us as a product of many conversations and observations and prompted us to upgrade our giving was the loyalty of the Pennington School alumni, faculty, and friends. For example, during the 1950s, the Rev. Dr. Charles Sayre was a camp counselor here at Pennington. When John was nominated and elected to the School’s Board of Trustees in May of 2003, he came to the first board meeting and found that Dr. Sayre was also a Pennington trustee; he also learned that Dr. Sayre’s father had graduated from Pennington in 1906. Now that’s what we call a generational loyalty coupled with a lifelong loyalty."
"We have another friend at the Methodist Church in Princeton who graduated from the Pennington School in 1947. After 60 years, he still says that his years at Pennington were the best years of his life. That’s sixty years of loyalty. A former pastor of ours graduated from the School and expressed his loyalty at his 50th reunion. These are just a few of the examples of personal loyalties and community interactions that inspired us to join the Francis Harvey Green Society as our lifetime commitment."
"A casual acquaintance said recently that she was sending her child to The Pennington School. She assured us that she had studied the school situation in the area carefully and had never found a person or a parent who expressed any regret at having been connected to The Pennington School. We believe that sentiment marks the beginning of a lifelong loyalty, and it is what makes a school started in 1838 a great school today and tomorrow."
R. Bruce Poynter ’44
“Were I to list primary formative influences in my life, certainly Pennington, would for a number of reasons, rank near the top. That is why several years ago when Kay and I reviewed our wills; I decided to include The Pennington School as a beneficiary.”