How Central Institute of the Deaf Alumni Association was founded…

Establishment of the Central Institute of the Deaf Alumni Association

Prior to the founding of the Central Institute for the Deaf Alumni Association, Miss Julia Connery, second principal of CID from 1918 to 1941, had envisioned a possibility of an alumni organization after a successful first reunion in June 1936. Desiring once more to see the alumni together before her retirement, she called them to attend the second reunion in June 1941, appointing Kenneth Booth as a chairman of Organization Committee. Doris Wilson Blanchard opened the first meeting’s morning session, and in the evening session, Kenneth Booth chaired the meeting where the organization was formed as the Central Institute for the Deaf Alumni Association (CIDAA). The first officers were elected: Marie Tilson Smith as the president; Robert Skinner, vice president; Kenneth Booth, secretary; Violet Wilkinson, treasurer, and Howard W. Schwartz, editor. Dr. Richard Silverman was selected as the Association’s first sponsor. It was agreed that the reunion was to be held every five years.

This reunion was a timely occasion for Dr. Max Goldstein who passed away a month later. He was well remembered enjoying being with his “children” while in his wheelchair at the reunion despite his paralytic stroke he had received in January, 1941. A first issue (November 1, 1941) of the Alumni News was dedicated respectfully and lovingly to the late Dr. Goldstein.

In October 1941, Mrs. Goldstein was bestowed as our first honorary member, and later before 1947, Miss Connery became the next honorary member.

In 1942, 1943, and 1945, new officers were elected by mail from the members of the Association.

The Association, its St. Louis and Chicago chapters took their parts supporting various funds for CID    Goldstein Scholarship, Building, and Expansion Funds from 1942 to 1949.

The third reunion was to be held in 1946, but due to Post World War II conditions, it was postponed until June 1947. Its chairman was Howard Schwartz. A reunion program booklet was dedicated as a memorial to the late Dr. Goldstein. The officers were then elected at the reunion to serve for four years until 1951 when the term of office would be five years from then on. At the banquet, a check of $226.25 was presented to Mrs. Goldstein for CID’s Building Fund. In May 1949, a donation of $260.32 was given to CID for its Expansion Fund. These contributions were raised through Mr. Schwartz as the Chairman of the drives under the Association. In addition, a donation of $163.00 was raised through Jack Calveard’s own drive.

Chairman Dayton Stone conducted the fourth reunion in June 1951, and the highlight of the program was a memorial service for Miss Connery who passed away in November 1950.

The fifth reunion, under the chairmanship of Russell DeHaven, was held in June 1956. A memorial service for Dr. Max Goldstein was one of the events of the program.

The Scholarship Fund Club was formed under Russell DeHaven’s leadership after the 1956 reunion for the purpose of raising money to help educate a deaf child at CID. The fund was augmented mostly through St. Louis Chapter’s social activities until 1961, the year of next reunion.

The sixth reunion in June 1961, with William B. Sheldon as its chairman, took place as a silver (25th) anniversary occasion of our first reunion in 1936. A check of three hundred dollars from the Scholarship Fund Club was presented by Russell DeHaven, the fund chairman, to Dr. Silverman. Another highlight was that Mrs. Goldstein was presented a large painted photograph of herself. Honorary memberships were bestowed upon Dr. Richard Silverman, Dr. Helen S. Lane, Mrs. Lucia Sharpe, Miss May Templeman, and Miss Mildred McGinnis.

In March 1965, the CID held its 50th anniversary celebration with its five day program which many local and out of town alumni attended. As a gift from the Association, a marble topped coffee table was presented to CID for its newly redecorated teacher’s and visitor’s lounge.

At the seventh reunion held under Sam Davis as its chairman in June 1966, Richard Meyer, chairman of CIDAA National Scholarship Fund, formerly Scholarship Fund Club, presented a check of one thousand dollars to Dr. Silverman for CID at the banquet. The guests receiving honorary memberships were Mrs. Jessie Skinner, Miss Evelyn Humphreys, Mrs. Frances Maritz, and Dr. Audrey Simmons. Another honorary member was announced   Jane Olmsted, who was unable to attend the banquet.

In November 1968, a bazaar given by the St. Louis Chapter was successful   a substantial proceed for the National Scholarship Fund was attained.

A program booklet of the eighth reunion in June 1971, under Paul L. Taylor as its chairman, was dedicated as a special tribute to Dr. Helen S. Lane for her forty years of exemplary leadership at CID. In 1972, she retired from her duties as a psychology professor, registrar, and principal  the latter since 1941. At the reunion banquet, William Sheldon, the chairman of National Scholarship Fund, presented to Dr. Silverman a check of $7,000. Also a generous contribution was collected and presented to Dr. Lane to purchase books for the Children’s Library.

The honorary membership recipients were Dr. Hallowell Davis, Mrs. Ruth Geier, Miss Mae Galli, and Mrs. Mary Lou Koelkebeck.

The CIDAA Posthumous Award (for those for their meritorious services) was created. The recipients of this award were Miss Byrd Cox, Dr. Max Goldstein, Mrs. Francis H. Lester, Miss Augusta Roeder, Mrs. Lillian Smalley and Mr. Alfred Thea.

During the 1971 reunion, the Association made the CIDAA directory be updated every 5 years. The one-time payment of $50.00 for CIDAA life membership was abolished.

At the 1971 reunion, there were 195 active members, 18 associate members and 8 honorary members.
Another scholarship fund raising project  annual Christmas card sales was initiated in 1972, and a very generous proceed each year has been realized.

Since its founding, a membership of the Association has grown from 39 to 294 active and associate members by 1975.

The ninth reunion in June 1976, with Richard J. Meyer as its chairman, took place as a first-ever Joint CIDAA – SJIAA (St. Joseph Institute for the Deaf Alumni Association) Reunion. A check of $14,000 from the National Scholarship Fund was presented by William Jordan Jr., the fund chairman, to Dr. Donald Calvert. Over 400 (both CIDAA and SJIAA) attended that reunion.

Honorary memberships were bestowed upon Mr. Irvin Shore and Miss Helen Woodwardhore.

Posthumous Awards went to Mr. Lewis T. Apple, Miss Cora Lacy, Miss Ethel Nichols, Mrs. Lillian B. Sheldon, Miss Blanche Snoddy and Mrs. Elizabeth M. West.

The office of Vice President was split into two new positions: First Vice President (Chairman of Reunion Committee) and Second Vice President (Chairman of Directory Committee). David Rosenthal and Charles Murphy were elected as the First Vice-President and Second Vice-President, respectively.

After Paul Kiel’s resignation, David Rosenthal ascended to the office of President. David doubled as the chairman of the 1981 Reunion committee.

The tenth reunion in June 1981, with David Rosenthal as its chairman, took place. A check of $5,000 from the National Scholarship Fund was presented by William C. Ross, the fund chairman, to CID.
Honorary memberships were bestowed upon Dr. Ira J. Hirsh, Mrs. Marcia F. Tash and Mrs. Helen G. Wolff.
Posthumous Awards went to Mrs. W. W. Boyd Jr., Mr. Leroy Lane, Mr. J. Reynolds Medart and Mr. Edwin B. Meissner.

Distinguished Alumni Awards was created. The recipients of this award were Dr. T. Alan Hurwitz, William H. Jordan and Howard W. Schwartz.

The 1981 C.I.D.A.A. Reunion ended with the election of David Rosenthal as our president of this association for the next five years. That time, it was the first time in the history of the association to have a woman to plan a Reunion after all the men who organized the previous reunions. Kathryne McGuigan Sheldon was elected for this job. Since the Reunion chairperson was the first vice president’s job of the association, Kathryne meticulously kept the board informed of the plans/ideas/changes of the Reunion committee for the big event, the 1986 C.I.D.A.A.   50th Anniversary Reunion.

While the C.I.D.A.A. Board under David Rosenthal’s direction was working hard in tackling the issues affecting our association, Kathryne’s Reunion committee was busy dealing with the details with the staff at the site of our event, the conference center of Washington University. Then in 1985, our president, David Rosenthal, made the decision for personal reasons to resign his position. Kathryne Sheldon then had to step into his shoes to take over the reins of the board. Because her reunion committee was moving along with the plans, she felt she should not leave the position of the chairmanship of that group without disrupting their plans. Kathryne had to move back and forth from each group to make sure that both the board and the reunion committee were running properly. It was not an easy road for everyone to travel but they made it to the 1986 Reunion! Along the way, they learned the meaning of leadership, cooperation and the fine art of running the board/committee.

The eleventh reunion in June 1986, with Kathryne as its chairperson, took place. A check of $12,000 from the National Scholarship Fund was presented by James H. Higgs III, the fund chairman, to CID.
Honorary memberships were bestowed upon Helen Barton, Phyllis Britt, Dr. Donald Calvert, Dr. Frank Kleffner and Agnes Loesche.

Posthumous Awards went to Robert N. Arthur, Mary Schofield Burton, Evelyn S. Grand, Joseph Goldstein, Julian G. Samuels and Katrine Dallmeyer Otto.

The recipients of Distiguished Alumni Award were Henry Buzzard, Laurie Tatman and William B. Sheldon.

The First Vice President Office was restored to Vice President; the Second Vice President Office was changed to Reunion Chair.

Secretary was split into Recording Secretary and Corresponding Secretary Office.

At the 1986 Reunion, Kathryne Sheldon was elected president of the association, but in 1988, she made the difficult decision for personal and health reasons to resign the position. Bonnie Williams Sandy took over the reins and the members of her board. Bonnie doubled as the CIDAA Bulletin Editor, as well as the editor of 1991 CIDAA directory.

The twelfth reunion (CIDAA’s 50th Anniversary) in June 1991, with Gloria Basta as its chairperson, took place. A check of $21,000 from the National Scholarship Fund was presented by Vivian Carrico, the fund chairman, to CID.

Honorary memberships were bestowed upon Charles M. Donnelly, Victoria J. Kozak and Jean S. Moog.

Posthumous Awards went to Edwin R. Christman and David R. Williams.

The recipients of Distiguished Alumni Award were Paul Ogden, Mary Helen Pearl and Paul L. Taylor.
Bonnie Williams became the first CIDAA President to get married during the term. In 1992 she married Steve Sandy and became Bonnie Sandy.

Editor Steve Williams finally produced the CIDAA Bulletin at regular intervals after a long hiatus.
Mark Edghill designed the new CIDAA logo before the Reunion in 1996.

CID alumnae Heather Whitestone became the Miss America in 1994. She was the first deaf woman in U.S. history to attain that much-coveted title.

Corresponding Secretary Jeff Wasserman took the additional responsibility of chairing the second Joint CIDAA-SJIAA Reunion in July 1996. That reunion was CIDAA’s 13th. Over 800 (from both CIDAA and SJIAA) attended that joint reunion.

The presentation of awards was moved to CID luncheon from the Reunion Banquet.

Bonnie Sandy created the Distinguished Young Alumni Awards. Bill and Kathy Sheldon sponsored a Roster Plaque for the Distinguished Young Alumni Award. (Other Roster Plaques for other award categories were already made many years before).

Ashley Vickers, Holly Bullard, Andy Tao, Jeffrey Tucker and Aileen Crowe received the Distinguished Young Alumni Awards.

Honorary memberships were bestowed upon Barbara Lanfer, Laura McCann and Christina M. Wood.
Posthumous Award went to Mrs. Catherine Pundmann.

The recipients of Distiguished Alumni Award were Doris W. Blanchard, C. William Blank Jr., Vivian M. Carrico, Vicki T. Hurwitz, Kathryne M. Sheldon and Heather Whitestone.

Mini-CIDAA Reunions occurred at the NAD (National Association of the Deaf) Convention every time beginning in 1994.

After the 1996 reunion, the membership of CIDAA stood at least 345.

Recording Secretary was reverted to Secretary. Corresponding Secretary was absorbed into Secretary. Membership Director was created. Jeff Wasserman moved from Corresponding Secretary to Membership Director. He resigned a short time later, due to personal reasons.

President Larry Dubin retired after 2½ years and Vice President Robie Scholefield succeeded that office. Alan Love was appointed by the Board to fill in Vice President’s office. Rick Balk was appointed by the Board to fill in the office of Membership Director.

Treasurer Dan Byrd, with his expertise in monetary accounting works at a large Texas oil firm, helped streamline the CIDAA monetary balances.

Editor Robert Crowell and Secretary Steve Williams contributed and developed the CIDAA website in 1998. Past President Bonnie Sandy sustained it through her overflowing contribution. This website has brought many CID alumni closer together.

Historian Sharon Liebman and Robert Crowell worked hard to preserve the CIDAA’s photos and history. Robert Crowell contributed to laminating the fragile newspaper articles about CID school, alumni, etc. Robert scanned hundreds of photos from CID’s and CIDAA’s archives for the slideshow presentation at the 14th reunion. Also, the photos were recorded on the CD’s for distribution to those who attended the reunion. He enlisted many CID alumni to help in identifying the people in the old photos.

Bonnie Sandy developed the permanent guidelines for Awards, Directory, and Reunion with help from several members of the Board.

During 1999-2000 the Board conceived the idea of changing the National Scholarship Fund (NSF) to CID Children’s Fund (CCF), which includes just about everything – for scouting needs, field trip needs, certain school needs, after-school activities, scholarship, etc. Noel Mangano, the CCF Chair, raised sizeable amount of money through the sale of Christmas cards, Note cards, etc.

Robert Crowell transformed the way the CIDAA Bulletin was produced – from typewriter, 3X5 index cards, etc. to computerized storage and production.

Reunion Chair Trudy Miller and Susan Reekers are seeing that everything is being done in order to have the most satisfying Reunion 2001 ever. That reunion will be CIDAA’s 14th. That marks 60 years from the start of CIDAA Reunion in 1941, but 65 years from 1936 when the predominately hearing organization known as Society of Progressive Oral Advocates (teachers, administrators, etc.), invited the CID alumni for their first-ever alumni reunion. Miss Julia S. Connery and Dr. S. Richard Silverman co-chaired that first-ever alumni reunion.

With CIDAA regards,

Robert Crowell, Mary Helen Pearl, David Rosenthal, Bonnie Sandy, Howard B. Schwartz, Kathryne Sheldon, and Steve Williams