Lawrence Bershon ’55, Friend and Supporter, Dies

Lawrence Chollett Bershon ’55 died March 7, 2011 in Palm Springs, California after losing a long battle against cancer. He was 77.

Born in Toledo, Ohio on July 21, 1933 to Dr. Albert and Miriam Bershon, Larry graduated from Thomas A. DeVilbies High School. Senior year he roomed with James Reid.

Larry formed and helped lead the International Relations Club at Princeton with Ben Zelenko and, with the University’s backing, represented Princeton at the Model United Nations meeting at Cornell. One of the student participants at that meting was Rita Abrams who later became the United States Representative to the UN.

Larry’s professional career was in advertising and public relations. Larry had a distinguished career in advertising and retired as the Manager of Corporate Advertising at ARCO. There he oversaw a number of PBS productions including the Emmy award-winning series “The Adams Chronicles”, the thirteen-part Carl Sagan Cosmos series as well as numerous other programs including one on the art of Willem DeKooning. Throughout his life Larry’s interests were theater, music and literature.

Larry is survived by his former wife Dorrinne, two children, Eric and Nicole, ’89, his brother Burt and four granddaughters, to whom the Princeton AlumniCorps community expresses its sorrow and extends its condolences.

Contributions in memory of Larry may be made to Princeton AlumniCorps,  12 Stockton Street, Princeton, NJ 08540. To make a contribution online, please visit

First Annual AlumniCorps Conference a Great Success

Princeton AlumniCorps held the first annual Engaged At Every Age Conference on Friday, February 25 in McCosh Hall at Princeton University. Among the more than 90 people in attendance were several Princeton AlumniCorps Board Members, alumni of Princeton University and many other institutions, and nonprofit organization representatives. All who attended were inspired by keynote speaker Marc Freedman of Civic Ventures.

The President of Princeton University, Shirley Tilghman opened the conference, commending the new Princeton AlumniCorp’s Community Volunteers Program as, “a splendid means to mobilize the wisdom of age as Project 55 Fellowships have done to harness the passion of youth.”

The morning Purpose Prize Panel included Barbara Allen, founder of Fresh Artists in Philadelphia; Richard Cherry, CEO of Community Environmental Center in New York City; and nominee Chet Safian ‘55, a founder of Princeton AlumniCorps (formerly Princeton Project 55). Attendees were presented with first-hand accounts, resources, and next steps to help guide them to new uses for their wisdom, experience, and passions.

President Tilghman opened the EAEA Conference

The afternoon career panel included Kerry Hannon, author of What’s Next? Follow Your Passion and Dream Job; Stephanie Harbour ‘05, President of MomCorps NYC; and Cathy Wasserman, founder of Self Leadership Strategies.  Each of these panelists spoke to the audience about how to take their goals and channel them into opportunities of future service and new careers. Each attendee also had their choice of two afternoon workshop sessions led by experienced professionals in the areas of: mentoring, starting an alumni-driven project, Princeton class service initiatives, Community Volunteers Board Service, and short term volunteer opportunities.

Many thanks to all of our accomplished panelists:

Marc Freedman                         Sara Gordon

Charles Plohn ’66                      Maria Kourepenos ‘85

Chet Safian ’55                          Kef Kasdin ‘85

Barbara Allen                            Adrienne Rubin ‘88

Richard Cherry                          Scott Taylor ‘75

Jim Gregoire ‘69                        John Heilner ‘63

Kerry Hannon                            Richard Walker ‘73

Stephanie Harbour ‘05               Mary Koger ‘86

Cathy Wasserman                     Kimberly Hendler

Dr. Bill Leahy ’66                       David Brown

Marty Johnson ’81                     Nick Beilenson

Ayo Johnson                            Travis Lovett

Mibs Mara

Click here to view photos from the event.

For those who were unable to make the conference, you can find a compiled list of conference resources, including the conference program and participants’ contact information here.  If you are interested in learning more about the conference or the Community Volunteers program, contact John Shriver, Program Director, at