As I think back on my very ﬁrst experiences with Cap and Gown, 11 years ago, I remember my initial amazement at how exquisite
it all seemed. Every event drew fascinating speakers and appeared to run ﬂawlessly, down to every last detail like the rose petals on the
tables and the pins for each new member. I recall my surprise, at those ﬁrst few events, at how the Cap and Gown alumnae had gone out of their way to create something beautiful and thoughtful, just for my fellow inductees and me. This was an organization of accomplished women who I didn’t even know yet, but who evidently cared deeply about my well-being and success. These women had extremely impressive backgrounds, yet were invested in changing the world for the better. These women joined Cap and Gown for life and continued to support it for decades on end. This organization was nearly 100 years old, had thousands of alumnae already, and even had its own logo. It was clear to me then that Cap and Gown women mean business; they are the Real Deal.
Today, I feel honored and humbled as I begin my ﬁrst year as Cap and Gown Alumnae Board President. Building upon Cap and Gown’s impressive legacy is no small responsibility, and one that I take very seriously. Like last year, we’ve outlined our plans for the year in terms of guiding principles and speciﬁc goals, with just a few small variations:
- We will focus on events/activities that are unique to Cap and Gown. We will focus on high quality events; less is more.
- We will focus on activities/events/communications that cross generations and create a sense of community.
- We will focus on reaching out to Cap and Gown alumnae globally.
- Strengthen our communication with alumnae and actives.
- Engage our remote alumnae: pilot a program with active Cap and Gown alumnae organizing one local event in the next year.
- Foster ongoing relationships with university ofﬁcials to leverage university resources and increase recognition on campus.
- Continue to improve upon our 4 events — Tapping Tea, Winter Welcome, Spring Brunch, Graduation Tea.
- Board development — engage and develop our board members.
- Financial planning – create systematic approach to gathering, analyzing and reporting information regarding dues, fundraising, and expenses.
This year, we are especially interested in engaging more of our long-distance alumnae who live in all corners of the globe and encouraging them to re-connect with Cap and Gown by organizing or attending local Cap and Gown events. If this might interest you, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally — I’m grateful that I am not embarking on this adventure alone. I have the good fortune of receiving wisdom and guidance from a number of inspiring women who have come before me. Michelle Galloway, Kathy Chou, and Ellen Petrill have been particularly encouraging and helpful, and a dozen more of you have already provided invaluable contributions that are helping us grow to be stronger and better than ever before. You are all my guideposts. Thank you.
With every event I attend and every project I work on, Cap and Gown women continue to amaze and inspire me. Here’s to another next year of continuing to build upon our fantastic legacy and building an even greater organization for the generations of Stanford women to come.
Samantha Quist, ‘03