Ann Futter Lomeli ’73

Before becoming a legal eagle, she soared in the classroom and on the playing fields. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography.
Before becoming a legal eagle, she soared in the classroom and on the playing fields. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography.

In a ground-breaking career, attorney Ann Futter Lomeli ’73 was the first female Corporate Secretary (think Secretary of State, not administra­tive assistant) for two major American companies—Con­necticut Mutual Life Insurance and MassMutual. After the enterprises merged in 1995 (“What is it about me and mergers!” wonders Futter, who was a student during NSFG’s merger with Williston), she went on to become co-General Counsel at MassMutual—the first woman ever to hold that position in the Fortune 500 company’s 165-year history. Through it all, she has maintained close school ties, keeping up friend­ships with classmates and twice serving on the board of trustees.

What were you like as a student?

I think of myself as starting out as shy, but I don’t know that I really was. I remember a girl from Brazil entering school in the middle of one year. I saw her standing all by her­self, so I introduced myself and we became very good friends. If I really had been shy, I probably wouldn’t have done that. I was friendly with people. I tried to get along with ev­eryone. That’s what you have to do. I think being involved with sports boosted my confidence.

What sports did you play?

I played soccer, basketball, and softball. Eleven varsity letters. I have those somewhere. One stand-out moment was a soccer game against Stoneleigh Burnham. Northampton had not beaten Stoneleigh for sev­eral years. I got the ball and as I ran toward the goal I heard someone behind me calling, “Kick it, kick it in!” but I kept going until I could see the whites of the goalie’s eyes. She looked terrified. And I went, wham! And in it went! We won by a score of 1-0 and my teammates car­ried me off the field. It sticks in my mind even though it was 46 years ago in 1969. Forty-seven years ago! Oh, my gosh.

Did you participate in other activities?

I was with the school newspaper, Pegasus, from the start. My senior year, after Northampton merged with Williston, I became co-Editor-in-Chief of The Willistonian with a boy named Geoff Van Anda ’73. I was a tutor and I was in the chess club. Newspaper and sports stand out, because I put in so much time. One of the things about the paper was that I did a series of articles about the merger while it was being planned, so I knew more details than many students. I interviewed Nate Fuller, the headmaster. I was a sophomore and that was exciting and intimidating, going up to his office to interview him.

What Impact did NSFG have on you after graduation?

I think it gave me a lot of con­fidence. Not to mention a good education. I went to Yale and I was fully prepared. I loved NSFG, I loved meeting all the kids, loved the opportunity to do things that interested me. I was able to take three languages, Latin, French and Spanish. Also, I would say the whole merger thing translated to Yale, which had just gone coed. I ended up co-chairing the Yale Undergradu­ate Women’s Caucus.

Do you have any advice for current students?

Take advantage of whatever oppor­tunities you have. Try new things. Enjoy the experience. The experi­ence is what you remember.


Jackee Mosher ’70

After learning to fly in Northampton, she took off for a groundbreaking career in aviation. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography.
After learning to fly in Northampton, she took off for a groundbreaking career in aviation. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography.

When Jackee Mosher ’70 broke into the macho world of commercial aviation in 1975, she was Ozark Air Lines’ only female pilot—and would remain so for eight more years. From there she went on to become the first woman captain at TWA and leader of the company’s first all-female flight crew. In all, she racked up some 18,000 flying hours during her 39 years at the helm for four different carriers, bucking sexist headwinds wherever she met them. Retired now in Florida, Mosher finds thrills playing softball, swimming, and flying a drone.

What inspired you tobe a pilot?

We had a program at NSFG that was called 5-5-5. For five weeks, you put in five hours over five days at whatever interested you the most. So I worked at the airport in Northampton for my 5-5-5. I was washing airplanes and fueling airplanes, and it was great. I loved it. I was the only female doing that. I knew I wanted to be a pilot or a doctor, and I didn’t study enough to be a doctor!

What did you love the most about NSFG?

Living with other girls. I always went to summer camp and lived with campers, so I was used to it. Having friends and living with them was the best part of board­ing school, especially because my parents were so strict. I came to school and had all these friends. It was awesome.

What kind of student were you?

Not a very good one! Studying was hard for me. I believe if any kind of mechanical classes had been available to women I really would have excelled in those. I had my best grades in Mrs. Beekman’s class. I also loved sports and did really well.

What was the fashionof the day?

We had bell-bottoms and hip hug­gers and all that. I did whatever the crowd did. So then after that I have always had tailored clothing. Tai­lored all the way. I don’t care what anybody thinks.

What will you miss about being a pilot?

Traveling. I spent most of my time in Paris or Madrid or Barcelona. I’m going to miss Paris the most. I used to bring food back—cheese and butter and olive oil. The food is so fantastic. That’s why the people are so skinny. The food is so pure and they walk everywhere.

Phyllis Lockwood Geiger ’65

For this prankster, taking risks paid off with a sweet career. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography.
For this prankster, taking risks paid off with a sweet career. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography.

At NSFG, Phyllis Geiger found a home away from home, and a new sisterhood. She adored her social life and was a spirited prankster around campus. Under her photo in her senior yearbook was a prophetic line about her life: “Everything is sweet­ened by risk.” In 1983, she started Peterbrooke Chocolatier, which now has many franchises in Florida and beyond, and ships all over the coun­try. Though Geiger is now retired, she still has a sweet tooth.

Which teacher had the most impact on you?

Mrs. Cantarella. She was the senior English teacher. She was very fore­bidding. Everybody really feared that they would get her, and of course they got her. When you were in her English class, you did pay atten­tion and you did listen. The ground rumbled when she walked into the room. She would call on people. One day she pointed at me and she said, ‘Lockwood.’ The question was about Moby Dick or something. And I didn’t have the right answer. And she yelled at me, I’ll never forget, ‘Lockwood, you are withering on the branch of knowledge.’ That stuck with me for the rest of my life.

What activities did you join?

In order to have a social life, you wanted to do stuff with Williston. I joined Mask and Wig and the Glee Club. I helped make costumes and I loved the performances. The per­formance I remember the most was “The Mikado.” I did some costumes for that. The whole performance was cool because there were some great voices involved.

What did you enjoy studying?

I enjoyed Latin the most, of all weird things. I’m not particu­larly good at languages. Somehow I clicked into the language. Latin has been a wonderful thing throughout my life as far as helping my vocabu­lary. I would recommend taking Latin to anybody. I hope that schools still carry it. I can’t really translate much, but still when something comes up, I try to translate it. It’s a good part of our education.

Who were you as a student and teenager?

I liked to play pranks with anyone that would have a prank with me.

One time we undid all the screws on the doorknobs in the house, so when the housemother came in to any room, the doorknobs fell off in her hands. Under my senior picture in my yearbook, it says, ‘Everything in life is sweetened by risk.’ And that’s so prophetic of my life. I went into the confectionary business. I risked everything I had and started a chocolate business, and now it’s all over the place. That’s why it’s prophetic. Isn’t that amazing?

What were some of the rules at NSFG?

Lights out at 10. And of course we hid in the closets and talked to each other. But after a while we realized we couldn’t hear each other very well through the walls. So we made a little hole there so we could talk. We’d talk about everything and anything.

What inspired you to start a chocolate company?

Peterbrooke Chocolatier is named after my children, Peter and Brooke. I always wanted to have my own business. When I apprenticed to a chocolatier, the lights went on for me. I was trained in the European method. And I thought, ‘Wow, we don’t have an American translation for this.’ So that’s what I did. I trans­lated the European way of making chocolate into an American thing.


Margaret Griggs Anderson ’61

An early love of books and other cultures inspires a life spent learning and living abroad. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography.
An early love of books and other cultures inspires a life spent learning and living abroad. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography.

As a day student at NSFG, Margi Anderson fell in love with books and other cultures. No wonder, then, that she would live her life by the same themes: living abroad for many years with her husband, exploring communities in Asia, and reading every book she could. After NSFG, Margi earned her political science degree from the University of Wisconsin and then a master’s de­gree in social work from Fordham. She now splits her time between New Canaan, CT, and a farmhouse in New Hampshire. She’s involved in several Japanese-American book clubs, volunteers on a domestic abuse council, and participates in an academic lecture series.

Who at Williston had a strong impact on you?

Mrs. Cantarella, who was legendary. She scared the daylights out of all of us. She was about 4’11” and she had this huge voice. She always called us by our last names. And she would read us the Riot Act if we didn’t do something. She wasn’t afraid to tell us the writers that she hated, like Hemingway. Bottom line, we did a lot of reading and writing and she exposed us to a lot of good litera­ture. Some that I still groan at, like Moby Dick. We spent so much time chasing a whale that year.

How did NSFG impact you?

Here was this very, very small school. It was tiny. But there were girls from all over. There were girls from Japan. Girls from the Clarke School for the Deaf. There were girls from South America. Girls from different parts of the country, and then local girls. I felt like, in a funny way, I was exposed to people I wouldn’t have been exposed to if I had been at the public high school. Considering I spent so much time in Asia, it was interesting to think how it opened me in ways I didn’t know until hindsight. I think there was an acceptance of all people, and that’s what I picked up from Miss Whitaker. That people are people and they’re interesting because they come from different backgrounds.

How did you spend your social time at NSFG?

We dated guys from Williston. We had mixers. Oh, geez. You’d sign up on a list and the girls would always be 5’10” and the guys would be 5’2”, and hopefully you’d get matched up with somebody your size. They were painful. You’d ride on a bus and get matched up with someone you had nothing in common with.

How have you maintained some of your friendships from NSFG?

Once a year in the summer we just get together and we have lunch together. It’s very nice to reconnect with these women whom I knew when I was 14, 15, 16 years old. And we see where our lives have taken us, all in very different directions. They’re all the same people under­neath it all. It’s really lovely, and it’s very rare. We laugh at how weird we were and how awkward.

What are you up to now?

I’m involved in a Japanese-Amer­ican group in New York and we organize small events. The idea is that there are Japanese women who travel here who might not have an opportunity to meet American women. We want to extend our friendship to them. It’s important to me because when I was in Japan, a friend introduced me to a women’s group. They welcomed me and helped me to understand what was so special and unique to Japan, and I felt like I wanted to give that back. It was such an important part of my life. There’s a commonality to the women who live overseas. You look at the world a little bit differently.

Faith Barrington ’61

A devotee of music and travel creates opportunities for Williston students to share her passions. Photos courtesy of Chattman Photography
A devotee of music and travel creates opportunities for Williston students to share her passions. Photos courtesy of Chattman Photography

Faith Barrington ’61 found her voice at NSFG, joining the Glee Club and singing in operettas. Now a member of a women’s barbershop chorus near New Haven, CT, she was inspired by her love of music to start the Faith Wilcox Barrington Music Enrichment Fund at Wil­liston, which supports the music and theater departments. Ms. Bar­rington, a travel agent for 45 years, also supports a scholarship program that helps students go abroad.

How was your transition to NSFG?

At the beginning I was miserable. I can’t say I was happy all the time. But I think that you hear that a lot. Going away to school for the first time is hard. It just took time, but I got more involved in singing and music. Over the years I loved being part of singing, Glee Club, and the operettas. Those things made me happy.

How did you decorate your dorm room?

I don’t think we were allowed anything on the walls. But I always enjoyed the weekends when we could have our record players in the rooms. I was a big fan of Johnny Mathis. On Saturday nights, I would put a record on and I would fall asleep to Johnny Mathis.

What inspired you to support the Experiment in International Living scholarship program at Williston?

I was an experimenter during my college year in Italy in 1964. Travel­ing and intercultural exchange I think are very important and a great experience for students. It’s a very worthwhile program and I wanted to encourage other students to have the experience. I always wanted to share that opportunity with others.

What’s most rewarding about supporting this program?

Talking with the students and hear­ing about their experiences after they come back. I’ve been able to read their essays. I love hearing how it’s affected them and, in some cases, it’s going to affect what they’re going to study or aims them in certain directions.

Why did you start the Faith Wilcox Barrington Music Enrichment Fund?

I’ve always been a singer. If you sing and like music, as you grow older, there are always groups out there that you can join, even if you’re not a professional. I like reinforcing the availability of music programs that will be a part of your life forever. And hopefully will.

Sandra Bashore Mesics ’55

Leaving a small hometown wasn’t easy, but it helped her discover music—and herself. Photo courtesy of Michael Perisco.
Leaving a small hometown wasn’t easy, but it helped her discover music—and herself. Photo courtesy of Michael Perisco.

Sandi Mesics attended NSFG sight unseen. Just a few weeks before school started, she decided to join her best friend in Northampton, moving from her hometown in Lebanon, PA. At NSFG, Sandi flour­ished, singing in the Hampsters choral group and editing the school newspaper. After graduation, she attended Simmons College before marrying her husband, Joe, who was in the Navy. When Joe was sent to the Mediterranean during the Suez Crisis, Sandi joined him, living in France and touring Europe with other military wives. She had two children and worked in retail after the couple returned stateside. She now lives in Cornwall, PA, where she’s an avid gardener and often visits her six grandchildren.

Can you describe your transition to NSFG?

I found it difficult. They had to sneak me in as a third person in a room in Hathaway House. I remem­ber enjoying the round tables in the dining room and getting to know people. I felt at that time that some of the girls—when it came to the boys at Williston— were very im­mature. I think some of those girls had no brothers and had been sent away at a young age. I think it was very helpful for me to get out of my roots. My father lived in Lebanon all of his life. My mother and father met there. I hadn’t really known people that were from other places. It was very enlightening for me.

What did you try at NSFG that was new for you?

I enjoyed singing with the Hamp­sters. I had never done anything like that before. I had taken voice lessons. I went out for the lead of “The Pirates of Penzance.” I lost out. She was a better singer. In the Hampsters, I’m pretty sure we sang “Blue Moon.” We sang for events at Williston and NSFG. We had two different directors who were our classmates. It was current and familiar songs. We had a lot of fun, and I think all of us enjoyed that. It’s one of my really good memories.

What teacher had a strong impact on you?

One of the things that I hadn’t learned to do was really write and compose an article or a piece of English literature. I didn’t have any experience with poetry. I was scared to death about that. I remember vividly when Mrs. Dunham said, ‘Close your eyes and open your hands.’ She gave each of us an acorn. We were to write something about the acorn. I just about fell off of my chair. I had never done anything like that.

What other memories stand out about NSFG?

At dinner, there was plenty of food but for some reason I wasn’t getting filled up. I thought maybe a second glass of milk would be good, though I had to get permission. I called my family and had them call our doctor so he would write me a note to get a second glass of milk.

How did NSFG impact your life?

It helped me to broaden my perspec­tive coming from a small town. Ev­erybody knew my family, and I always felt like I was under a microscope. It gave me a little more substance and helped me become the person that I am. It helped me to mature and not to depend on my family. I was there and I was alone. I think all of that is important.

Patricia Howard Ambrose ’55

Confidence gained at NSFG paves the way for world travel and studies in history. Photo courtesy of Tim Mackay.
Confidence gained at NSFG paves the way for world travel and studies in history. Photo courtesy of Tim Mackay.

Pat Ambrose attended Northamp­ton School for Girls for only one year, but she found it to be an experience that changed her life. She attributes the confidence she gained while at NSFG to leading her to travel all over the world and complete her college degree at the age of 43. Ms. Ambrose studied English history and notes that one of her favorite trips was to visit historic battle sites from the 1400s and 1500s in England. Ms. Ambrose lives in rural New Hampshire, is the recording secretary for three school boards, and reads “as much as I can fit in.”

Who had a big impact on you at NSFG?

I was homesick. It took me a little while to get used to being at NSFG. There was one person that helped me. Mrs. Duncan. I’m not sure what her role was at the school, but I remember that we dedicated our senior yearbook to her. There was just something about her. She was always very reassuring. She was calm. Just seeing her around campus made me think everything was going to be ok. I can’t explain it, really. In our yearbook, we said, ‘She made our stay at NSFG a bit of our lives that will always be outstanding in our memories.’ So apparently a lot of people felt the same way I did about her.

What was your favorite spot on campus?

My room. My roommate and I had a very small room. It was almost claustrophobic, with two small twin beds and our desks side by side. Anne Babcock was my roommate, and she was quite a character. Anne was the opposite of me. I was very quiet and very studious. When we roomed together, everyone was waiting for fireworks to begin. But we got along fine. She was very funny. She would make up little silly poems and she’d write them in my notebook when I wasn’t there. Then I’d open it up to study and there would be a funny poem or picture. She was always making me laugh. She was a very unique kind of person.

What were you like back then?

I was studious and very quiet. Look­ing through my yearbook, I can see why a lot of people wrote about how I had this concerned look on my face all the time. When I first got to Northampton School for Girls, I was awed by the place. I was intimidated by it. And yet, one of the first things that happened was that my fellow students elected me president of Hathaway House. I was amazed by that. Between that and having Anne Babcock as my roommate, it helped my self-confidence.

What were some of NSFG’s rules?

They were very strict about the rules at NSFG. For example, we couldn’t chew gum. We were supposed to dress up nicely for dinner. We couldn’t wear pants. There could not be any swearing, smoking, or drinking. I believe we had to go to church or some kind of religious service every Sunday. If we went anywhere at all off campus, we had to check in and out with somebody.

What was the biggest impact of NSFG on your life?

The most important things that NSFG provided to me were stabil­ity, security, and support. I needed those most at that point in my life. That’s what gave me the basis for trying new things, even if you’re intimidated by them. At least try them and try your best. That was a crossroads year. Your whole future life depended on what you did. That’s how I felt about it. It was just the right time for me. I don’t know what I would have done without it. Later on in my 40s, this confidence pushed me to get my college degree. I felt so bad that I hadn’t gotten it, and it was bothering me. My kids were in school or some of them had graduated, and I had the time. I dedicated two years to it. I just loved it. I had good teachers, and I loved it.

Maria Burgee Dwight LeVesconte ’52

A gerontologist reflects on “one of the best times of my life."
A gerontologist reflects on “one of the best times of my life.”

Maria “Mimi” Dwight Vesconte ’52 was on the cheerleading squad in her public school, but when her parents decided to send her to NSFG, the small school barely had enough students to fill the sports teams—let alone cheer from the side. The change was instrumental; Maria says it was “one of the best times of my life.” Now 80 years old, she is a gerontologist working as a consultant in the Redwoods of Cali­fornia in a house she designed. Her social research on the elderly has taken her around the world, includ­ing China, India and Singapore.

What teacher had the most impact on you?

I was dyslexic, and nobody knew that in those days. I loved English, which was easy because I spoke it. I started on third base. But I had a fabulous teacher in Ada Judd Green. She pushed me to do creative writ­ing. She took a personal interest in us as human beings. I think certainly Mrs. Green was an inspira­tion to a lot of us. She was down to earth. And would have us into her home and personal life.

What sort of student were you at NSFG?

We sincerely believed that putting raisins and cider into the back of our closets would turn them into alcohol and we could get drunk. All we did was get sick. There used to be jugs of cider exploding in the dorms. I loved learning. It really turned me on to learning and exploring ideas. I really loved boys and I was boy crazy. Somewhere my kids found an old report card that said, “Mimi is a good student but she seems inordinately interested in boys.” In fact, in biology—we all had to take it—we were all waiting to get to the human reproductive system. We never did. We got to frogs. And then the class ended.

What was the fashion trend of the day?

Looking back, we probably looked like hell but we thought we looked quite glamorous. We had skirts down to our ankles practically, and heavy white socks and sneakers wrapped up in white bandage tape. And cardigan sweaters that we wore backwards. If you showed that you had breasts, you somehow managed to hide that by wearing a slip, a blouse, and a sweater. You were asexual looking. We could not wear trousers, only on Saturday afternoons and never downtown. We couldn’t smoke and we couldn’t chew gum in public. You couldn’t wear makeup. No one was a priss about getting all dolled up. I still don’t wear makeup, which is kind of too bad because I could use it now.

What did you do when you went into Northampton?

You had to go to church every Sunday. We went to the movies on Saturdays. That was a big deal. We’d go to the Academy of Music or the Calvin. We went to a lot of classical concerts at Smith. We got $2 a week allowance, so we couldn’t go shopping that much. Movies cost a quarter, and you had to put at least a quarter in the church bucket. It didn’t leave you a lot of money. One or two of us went to Joe’s Pizza, and you could buy beer and bring it back. We’d have enough money for three beers, and there would be 12 of us. It was very daring.

How did you meet boys?

Williston was sort of the last choice. You usually wanted to goto Deerfield. We wrote a lot of letters. We had mixers and we had dancing school my freshman year. I went to meet the boys. I didn’t care about much else. We could have dates and sit in the parlor at Montgomery. We could go to the gym, and there were no chaper­ones, so that was the place to go. Or we could walk on the dike with boys. Eventually we got the student council to agree that we could sit down with boys on the dike, but we couldn’t put our elbows on the grass, which meant you had to be upright. It wasn’t just one elbow, you couldn’t have any elbows.

You helped start the Angelus tradition. What was the inspiration?

It was during the Korean War. A lot of people I knew were in the ser­vice. It was very sobering among all this frivolity. We had our own little world. I just thought that we should connect to the broader world. I went to an Episcopal retreat, and they had an Angelus bell. And you just stopped what you were doing and were quiet. It was very moving. The silence took you to someplace else. I loved it. Stop everything and what you’re doing is very superficial and stop and look at the greater picture. That’s where it started, and we managed to pull it off at NSFG.

Priscilla Ruder Lucier ’50

From a fresh start at NSFG to a happy career and home at Williston. Photo courtesy of Chattman Photography

At NSFG, Priscilla Lucier ’50 dated only Amherst College “boys,” but she ended up marrying a Williston graduate: Joe Lucier ’50. Together, the couple returned to Williston in 1977 to work in the develop­ment office and to revitalize the school’s fundraising efforts, creating a partnership that would prove a boon for them and the school. All four of their children also attended Williston. Ms. Lucier says her time at both NSFG and Williston were “highlights in my life.”

Why did you attend NSFG?

My parents got divorced and the family moved in with my grand­parents. We saw that it just wasn’t right. My aunt and uncle were over in Amherst, and we thought that’s the place we ought to go. My grades were failing, and I didn’t know what I was doing and where I was going to go. So they decided I should go to NSFG. My mother and I went over and we talked to Ms. Whitaker and she accepted me. And I loved it. It was the best time of my life in the school. It came at a wonderful time when I really needed help.

How would you describe Ms. Whitaker?

Ms. Whitaker was something else. I’ve never met a woman like her. She was so lovely with us all. She treated us so well. We could do no wrong. She had a lot of messages about going out into the world and so forth. She was a very gentle soul. Ms. Bement was the opposite. But obviously they worked well together.

What was your role working at Williston Northampton?

Bob Ward was the headmaster. When he called Joe, to see if he would come to be director of development, he said, ‘There’ll be something for Priscilla to do. Don’t worry. She’ll be my hostess for parties and so forth. We’ll keep her busy.’ So I went up there not know­ing what I was going to do, but I saw quickly that I was going to be Joe’s secretary and business manager. We were a great team, and I learned a lot from Joe. It wasn’t easy because there were a lot of changes that had to be made. I think both of us made that happen and we’re very proud of that.

Did you work side-by-side with your husband every day?

Yes! We had the old Victorian house down by the library. We had ninth grade girls on our third floor. So we had a dormitory and a beautiful house to live in. We ate our meals down in the dining hall. We were treated like faculty, which was a wonderful thing for them to do. Our dog, Sadie, slept at the top of the stairs of the office, and she would go down to the admissions office to get a few pats and a piece of candy. The thing I miss most is the kids. They were just wonderful and fun. I miss them to this day. It was a great ex­perience. It was a lifesaver for all of us. And our children went to school for free, and that was a great gift. I’m almost in tears here.

What’s one of the biggest changes you made together?

The school had no money. They weren’t getting any money in. Joe pulled it together. There were mo­ments that he had to really fight to do what needed to be done. He’s got every award that’s ever been given by Williston. Thankfully they rec­ognized that what he did was very important. I’m proud of what he did and I’m proud that I helped him.

Charles “Chic” Eglee ’70

An academic career spurred on by music forges a successful writer and producer.
An academic career spurred on by music forges a successful writer and producer.

Charles “Chic” Eglee ’70 remem­bers the year he went away to Williston. The Beatles’ “Revolver” album had just been released, and it rocked his world. In fact, many of his memories of Williston hinge on the music of the late ’60s— that, and the growing activism on campus around the Vietnam War. A studious kid, Mr. Eglee learned to channel his wit and became a writer and producer for TV shows and Netflix series such as “The Shield,” “Dexter,” and “Hemlock Grove.” Jefferson Airplane. The Grateful Dead. Somebody in the room next door to me was playing “Are You Experienced?” and I walked by and stuck my head in. We all stood in the doorway staring at the record player going, ‘What the f— is this?’ Nobody had ever heard music like this before. The music sounded so original and subversive. That was a great memory of that time.

Can you describe the dorm culture?

The one year I lived in the dorm, which was John Wright House, that was an incredibly kinetic year musically. Jimi Hendrix’s first album came out, The Doors had just come out. The Velvet Under­ground. To me, I just remember the dorm being essentially a musical environment. There was this kid from Virginia and he was a big Motown head and he always had Motown playing. The Summer of Love happened my junior year.

What at Williston inspired or influenced the career you have now?

I was studying constantly. I had lots of papers to write. It gave me a work ethic. I went to Yale and it was like, ‘Oh a 10-page paper, oh no big deal.’ I had written a hundred of those. The academic discipline that I brought from Williston served me very well in college.

Who were you as teenager?

I remember becoming very political my senior year. The Vietnam War was coming to the fore. In East­hampton, whenever anybody from Massachusetts was killed in Vietnam, they would toll the church bells. I just remember walking around and it seemed like it was endless that the church bell would be tolling. That war just loomed over the campus…That war, man, you had to be there. It was the thing that shaped my generation more than anything.

What are you working on right now?

After a very long run on “The Shield,” I worked on “Dexter” for a couple of seasons, and then I went in to set up “The Walking Dead.” Then I went to Netflix on a show that they had which was the first venture into a regular series. They had this show that had premiered and it was just a disaster. It was a genre show and by episode four everyone had deserted the tent. They needed someone to come in and fix it. I had not been on a fix-it mission before. The show was called “Hemlock Grove.” There were no TV people involved. Nobody knew how to do a TV show. I got the show up and functioning the second year. We earned back the good will of the critics and then got the audience back. And then this last year really had a lot of fun. We got to shoot off all the fireworks at once. That drops in October.

What makes for a good show?

It’s really about storytelling. The great thing about TV is there’s this remarkable alchemy that takes place when you’ve got actors, and writers and this sort of synergistic exchange. The show becomes greater than the sum of its parts. Are you going to resonate in the zeitgeist? Are you going to hit that thing that makes it special? I’ve had the good fortune of having that happen a few times in my career. “The Shield” was one of those shows. That show was really pretty wonderful for me. You look at a show like “Breaking Bad,” and that’s where the writers and the material and the actors, it just took off. It was smartly conceived. There’s a certain ‘lightning in a bottle’ quality to a good TV show.