2012 Honor Roll Donor Profiles

The Beverlee Balch Lehr ’61 and Bill Lehr Scholarship

Amy Cookson ’13

Amy Cookson ’13

Amy Cookson, a senior in Trinity’s nursing program, feels incredibly blessed for the opportunities that her Trinity education has provided. Amy takes nothing for granted and continues to “keep her eye on the prize,” advice that was given to her sophomore year by Assistant Professor LaVerne Green in the nursing program.

Originally from Sierra Leone, Amy and her family moved to the United States when she was six years old. Committed to success, Amy got an early start on her college search. She spent hours searching universities with nursing programs and immediately felt drawn to Trinity’s program.

Amy explains, “I chose Trinity because I wanted to be in a school that provided leadership opportunities and motivated its students.”  From the moment Amy stepped on campus she thrived in the small classroom settings with support from her professors. Professor Green mentored Amy through the nursing program and continuously reminded her that life changes and hardships will cross your path, but if you work hard, you will achieve your goals. Amy, preferring not to take any short cuts, and to soak up as much knowledge as possible, said, “I’ve learned the importance of really knowing my subjects, because as a nurse my actions may have a big impact on people’s lives.”

Amy Cookson ’13As part of her financial aid, Amy was awarded the Beverlee Balch Lehr ’61 and Bill Lehr Scholarship. “When I found out I was selected to receive this scholarship I felt so surprised and blessed. I was at a loss for words.” Amy noted that the scholarship assistance allowed her to reduce her hours at a part-time job so that she could more fully concentrate on her studies.

Looking back on the past three years at Trinity, Amy can’t believe how much she has grown personally.  She credits her classmates, professors and family for being such positive influences in her life: “My family inspires me all the time. The most goal-oriented people I know are my mother and grandmother.  I aspire to be as kind-hearted and generous as they have been.”

After graduating Amy hopes to become a nurse anesthetist or community nurse. Amy concluded, “I don’t want to just earn a degree to benefit myself. I am at Trinity to gain the knowledge to help those who are in need.”

Judy McAdams Cullen ’58, College of Arts and Sciences

Judy McAdams Cullen

Judy McAdams Cullen ’58 and Tom

“I met my husband, Tom, while I was interning for Shell Oil in New York City. He was already employed by Shell, and was soon to be transferred to the south for his job. I wanted to follow him and get married, but my father insisted that I finish my Trinity education. Tom was all for it, and I’m so glad I did. Trinity was so special, and the friendships I have in the class of ’58 are life-long. The interaction on campus between students and professors, and the care shown to us each day…these are the things that I’ll always remember.

I was an economics major, and although I got married and moved with Tom to Texas directly after graduation, I’ve used my Trinity education constantly. For class, I had to read the Wall Street Journal every day, which made me aware of costs, savings, and spending in life after college. When we were house hunting, I felt wise about the process. And maybe most importantly, being educated helped me select great schools for our children.

Today, my husband and I give to Trinity because we’re proud of the school. Tom loves Trinity, too. He gets just as excited for Reunion as I do! We have so many fond memories of joyful times with my classmates and their husbands. We also feel very grateful to Sr. Martha Julie’s memory. Trinity is just such a special, amazing place.

When matching gifts became an option at Shell, and my husband came home with the paperwork, we were so excited. At work, the matching gift program was frequently mentioned in company communications, so keep your eyes and ears open for a similar program at your company. For us, it’s a way to show gratitude for our entire Trinity experience. And why not? It’s free money for a place you loved!”

Connie Krisman Hart ’62, College of Arts and Sciences

Connie Krisman Hart ’62

Connie Krisman Hart ’62

“Trinity has produced a lot of incredible women with accomplished careers, but I think it’s important to note that Trinity also prepared me well to be a mother. Trinity was wonderful because it wasn’t just about what you learned in the classroom. You also learned the art of being a woman: being caring, devoted, kind. Trinity was special because they really supported that kind of growth in everyone.

I decided to become a Trinity Sustainer because it’s easier to give a smaller amount each month. Our family has a lot of donation requests, and we support other small charities, and other schools. This way we are able to support Trinity along with the other requests, and know we are supporting it throughout the year.

I give to Trinity not just because of how it helped me grow. We know that women’s colleges aren’t supported in the same way other colleges are. I love that Trinity is still a women’s college. That’s something that I hope to never see change!”

Patricia A. Teufel ’72, College of Arts and Sciences
President, Casualty Actuarial Society

Patricia A. Teufel ’72

Patricia A. Teufel ’72

“I have always believed that education leads to opportunities. For females, especially in my generation, education was particularly important. The all-women’s college environment was the best way to get an education in my day, and my math major at Trinity opened doors to a somewhat unexpected career. I was one of the first females to succeed in the field of actuarial finance, and I am now the president of the Casualty Actuarial Society.

It was helpful that I was part of a company that was ahead of its time. They really supported the growth and development of women. I was part of a program that developed future leaders, and I was one of the first female regional vice presidents at the company. In 1990, I joined KPMG, where I stayed until I retired.

KPMG was very committed to community outreach. It had a large foundation, and partners were required to participate in its matching donations program. I was able to attend Trinity because of a scholarship, and I believe very much in paying it forward. Our foundation’s match was available to every employee’s college, so it was only natural that I supported Trinity.

Check in with your Employee Benefits office. They can help you understand the process for making a matching gift, and provide you with the forms you might need. Nearly every insurance company has a matching gifts program, and many major corporations do as well. It’s a perfect way to support the important cause of education.”

Mary Ann Wall ’83, College of Arts and Sciences
Vice President for Marketing, JPMorganChase

Mary Ann Wall ’83

Mary Ann Wall ’83

“My time at Trinity was deeply influential in solidifying my foundation as an individual and instilling confidence in my abilities. The liberal arts curriculum and intimate learning environment supported a life-long love of learning. Seeing so many women and students in positions of leadership was inspiring, and I am grateful that some “nudged” me to try student government roles.

While at Trinity, I studied economics and it provided a spring-board for a long-term career in financial services. Importantly, at Trinity, the values of my traditional Catholic upbringing were reinforced but I was challenged to evolve into a more mature and adult faith. My faith has been the lens through which I view the world and has been the foundation from which I make all of my life decisions.

I give to Trinity because I think it is very important to support causes or institutions that have had a meaningful impact on your life. I had a terrific four years at Trinity. The knowledge and experiences gained, plus the many wonderful friends that I made have had a lasting legacy for me. Moreover, I choose to be a sustaining donor because it enables me to give a little more financially since the gifts are monthly. From a practical standpoint, there is always a flurry of donation requests from all types of organizations near the holidays. It is easy to accidentally overlook a request that may be of importance to you. So, with recurring donations, I know the gift will always be received.

If you believe that your Trinity experience was a positive one, whether it be the education you gained, and internship that opened doors, or simply meeting some great individuals who became lifelong friends, you should consider donating. You will be helping another young woman have a chance to build a foundation that will help her live a fulfilling and meaningful life.”

Lauren Pacelli McLaughlin ’96, College of Arts and Sciences
Trinity Trustee, Co-founder and Managing Partner, BrigliaMcLaughlin, PLLC

Lauren Pacelli McLaughlin ’96

Lauren Pacelli McLaughlin ’96

“There’s no question—Trinity whetted my appetite for being in a man’s world and taking on leadership positions. After graduation from law school, I chose to have a law career in the construction industry. In my male-dominated field, women are often underestimated. It’s empowering to be in a field that needs more diversity, and it’s my Trinity education that inspired me to take on this challenge. Graduating from Trinity, I knew I had a job to do.

I give to Trinity because I have a lot of Red Class Pride! But seriously, it’s a meaningful gift for me. It’s great to know I’m giving to an institution that’s paying the bills and balancing the books. I feel confident about donating my money here.

Writing a check can be really intimidating come January or June. Your heart is sometimes bigger than your paycheck! But the generosity you feel can be realized if you set up monthly giving. Administratively, there’s no hassle. It’s convenient. It helps me reach my goal of how much I want to give instead of feeling guilty when I can’t do it in a one-time check. I like to think of it as my “good deed for the month!”

You really don’t have to be a millionaire to give a substantial gift. Being a sustainer makes you a special donor, because Trinity can count on you year-round. And best of all, you know that you’re making an impact every single month towards what is surely your favorite cause!”

Ernestine Blango ’03, College of Arts and Sciences
Senior Operations Associate, AARP – Iowa

Ernestine Blango ’03

Ernestine Blango ’03

“I owe everything in my career to my time at Trinity. Trinity helped to shape my self-confidence as well as my work ethic. As a political science major, I landed a wonderful internship with Hilary Clinton’s PAC, which led to a full-time opportunity working for political pundit Donna Brazile. It was a Trinity friend who introduced me to AARP, and I have been with them ever since then, both on the political and foundation sides of the business. I love what I do, and my Trinity connections helped me to get there!

I give to Trinity for a few big reasons. One, I worked in the Development Office when I was an undergrad, and I saw first-hand how important the donations are to the needs of the school. Two, I’ve now worked for a nonprofit, and I understand that the support of people is essential to an organization’s success. And three, I was the recipient of a scholarship when I was a student. So I know on a personal level how much someone’s support can make a difference!

AARP has an employee giving program, and it’s strongly supported from the top down. It helps to know my small gifts are doubled in their impact because of the matching program. Just giving a little suddenly seems like giving a lot!

I value my education from Trinity. I want Trinity to stay strong, and continue being a pillar of the D.C. community. I know it’s tough for recent graduates to give, but I hope they’ll think about making a gift, even if it is a small gift. Especially if they work for a large corporation, they should seek out a match! Your organization can provide you with the information, and the human resources department is a good place to start.”

Sherron Washington ’03,’05, School of Professional Studies
Adjunct Professor

Sherron Washington ’03,’05

Sherron Washington ’03,’05

“Trinity has been the catalyst to my success, so when I was asked why did I donate, the answer was simply “to provide the same possibility of success for someone else.”

My experience at Trinity is one that is very meaningful to me, both as a student and faculty. While attending the university, I was able to receive both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees, which enabled me to become a successful entrepreneur, professor, marketer, designer and writer.  All the knowledge and skills that I acquired were both useful and invaluable, which helped me maintain relationships, conquer challenges and aid others. And as a faculty member, I realize the importance of providing that same rewarding experience by donating my time and finances. It is necessary to help carry on the legacy of productive, successful students.”