Where Are Our Golden Grads Now?

Look Them Up Here

GG Members by Grad Year

In Memoriam

We had a great time at the Golden Grads Luncheons at Sand Point Country Club. Here are some pictures to spark your memories. On June 5, 2019 Golden Grads returned to the Nile Country Club for a wonderful 37th Annual Luncheon. Although the Covid-19 pandemic meant no Annual Luncheon in 2020 or 2021, scholarships and Teacher's Wish List requests are being awarded.

President's Report for Fall 2021

by GG President Doug Whalley (’63)

New Principal

In the last Grapevine I wrote how lucky we were to have Kristina Anderson Rodgers as the Principal of Roosevelt. Two weeks later she announced that she had accepted an offer to be the principal at Bainbridge Island High School (unrelated, I hope, to the fact that I spelled her name wrong). Fortunately, I am pleased to tell you that her replacement appears to be equally outstanding. His biography is printed elsewhere in this Grapevine, but I will give you my personal impressions of meeting HkwauaQueJol Hollins (call him “Que”). He is experienced, personable, enthusiastic about being at Roosevelt, and quick to laugh. He was excited to hear about RHS Golden Grads and what we do, and he was looking forward to attending our luncheon and visiting with the Board of Directors when we once again meet at the school. He was talking and laughing with Ben Snowden when I arrived – a good sign. I believe Roosevelt is in good hands.

Your (Seemingly Permanent) Board of Directors

Because we have had to cancel our luncheon and Board meetings at the school, we have not had an annual meeting or election for two years. In August,the officers and some of the committee members met in person for the first time since the pandemic started. We approved the budget printed in this issue, and the elected officers did not object to serving another term. (Of course, I didn’t actually ask them). We hope to have a live, in-person Board of Directors meeting at the school in the Spring, and a luncheon in June 2022. Luncheon Chair, Cindy Dack, is ready to come out of her two-year retirement. I greatly appreciate the work of our officers, committee chairs, and members and class representatives.

Roosevelt’s 100th Anniversary

Roosevelt High School opened in 1922, despite complaints that it was too expensive and too remote. An anniversary celebration is planned for Spring 2023 if the pandemic permits it. Golden Grads will play a part.

Welcome New and Returning Members

In the last Grapevine, I mentioned that we had hired Amy Hall as a part-time administrative assistant to work on recruitment and communication with members. It worked. Recently, Amy created an email allowing for online membership renewal by credit card – a campaign that has resulted in over 35 new or renewed members in the first three weeks. Soon we will also be able to accept credit cards for dues and donations online, so keep an eye on our website and our Facebook page for upcoming announcements.

Roosevelt – Training Ground for the Olympics

In this issue, we write about three Olympic athletes from Roosevelt. I am certain there are more, so please write our editor or me with information about them. We are also interested in Special Olympians, and Olympic coaches and trainers from Roosevelt.

My Family at Roosevelt

I am taking advantage of my bully pulpit to brag about my family’s connection to Roosevelt. This Fall, my granddaughter and my grandnephew will both be freshmen at Roosevelt, part of the class of 2025. They are the 4th generation of our family to attend – now a total of 12 family members so far, beginning with my mother in the Class of 1931 when Cecil Bullock was a teacher. I warned Principal Hollins that in addition to the two new freshmen, four more Whalleys are on their way, with the youngest, Sage Whalley, Roosevelt High School Class of 2039, already dressed in Roosevelt colors.

Want to Know Who Belongs to Golden Grads?

The names of all RHS Golden Grad members are on our website. Thanks to our GG web master, Ellen Brown Hewitt ’53 for periodically updating the list of our members there.

To learn if one of your classmates is a GG member, go to our website: “www.rhsgoldengrads.org” On the Home Page, look at the menu items on the left side of the page.

Find the second link below the swing dancers – “GG Members by Grad Year”. Then click on that link.

Golden Grads Are on Facebook

Here’s how to see us on Facebook:

• Login to your Facebook page.

• Type “Roosevelt Golden Grads” in the search
box at the top.

• Roosevelt Golden Grads should pop up as a

• Click on us to see our page.

• Underneath the banner with our name, select
“Like” & “Follow”.

• Then start reading our posts when they come
up on your feed.

Spring Happenings at Roosevelt

Roosevelt High School Coming Back to Life!

by Cathie Hogue Huffman, ’63

Hello Golden Grads! 
Lots of things are happening at RHS…so Just-So-You-Know …

Theater News:

A strange thing happened when casting for Mama Mia (Sold out: sorry I wasn’t aware of the play earlier!)  Being short of male actors for this musical they auditioned members of the football team(!) and find the Drama students and Football athletes are melding well (anyone remember the Rhythm and Riot Review in the 60s?)  There’s a good article in the Seattle Times.  Here’s the link:

Roosevelt High School Theatre Department 


The Spring Musical will be Spongebob the Musical  May 12, 13, 14, 20 & 21 at 7 pm and May 21 & 22 at 2:30 pm.

Jazz Band:

The Jazz Band is one of the top 15 groups competing in the Essentially Ellington Competition and Festival this year…in New York again! The dates are May 5-7, 2022.  Previous RHS performances are available on uTube. They are truly amazing and when I find where the finals can be heard/seen I’ll let you know.  


 March 21, 7 p.m.: April Foolz Concert, Roosevelt Theater

 Concert, Chamber, & Symphony Orchestra, Roosevelt Theater

June 7, 6 p.m.: Final Concert, at the Roosevelt Theater Concert, Chamber, & Symphony Orchestras


1. I’s time to send in dues for 2022,  if you have not already. The “Grapevine” newsletter is only sent to those with current dues.

2.  Class news is due March 18th – send to:  janet@whalley.net  (because this coming school year is Roosevelt’s 100th – you might want to write a memory from your time at Roosevelt.

3.   There will be no luncheon this coming June!  But activities are being planned for September ’22 through June of ’23 to celebrate the Centennial!

I hope this finds everyone returning to some type of normal!  It’s so good to see the students are able to participate and compete again!

Find Out More

. To see what else is happening this spring, go to one of the websites below:

For More on RHS Jazz Bands click here or visit the Jazz Boosters Calendar Page. For RHS Orchestra click here. For RHS Roughriders Band information click the Riders Band site. And for Roosevelt Drama events click here.

Music, Music, Music!

Roosevelt High School Jazz Band Members Win Awards at 2021 Essentially Ellington Jazz Festival

By Paul de Barros Special to The Seattle Times

Members of the Roosevelt High School Jazz Band earned seven awards Saturday for solo and section work at the prestigious 26th annual Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Festival. Thanks to the pandemic, bands were participating virtually. The event was produced in New York by Jazz at Lincoln Center, and went from Wednesday through Saturday.

“It’s just wild how it’s all come together,” said Roosevelt band director Scott Brown after the awards ceremony. “To get everything popping the way they did was just a miracle.” Roosevelt band members who received outstanding soloist awards were Nathan Mesler (vibraphone), Eli Sullivan (alto saxophone) and Nick Mesler (trombone). Honorable mentions for solo work went to Owen Gwinn (tenor saxophone) and Javier Gonzalez (trumpet). Outstanding section awards went to the Roosevelt trombones and trumpets.

Essentially Ellington celebrates the music of Duke Ellington and other classic jazz composers and has been open to bands west of the Mississippi since 1999. Since then, Roosevelt has made the finals 21 out of 23 years and has won the competition four times.

In 2021, bands were critiqued but not ranked, so there was no winner. The audio tracks of Roosevelt playing two pieces by Ellington — the swinger “Old King Dooji” and “Pyramid,” a Latin-tinged tune co-written by trombonist Juan Tizol — were streamed live Saturday, as still photographs of the band appeared on screen. Their performance of “Old King Dooji” was the audition recording the band pieced together digitally earlier this year, when the pandemic prohibited students from playing together in the same room. “Pyramid” was recorded live.

You can hear the Roosevelt Jazz Band play at the 2021 Essentially Ellington festival below or by going here, starting at the 33-minute mark.

Paul de Barros: pdebarros@comcast.net. This report is supported, in part, by the Rubin Institute for Music Criticism, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation.