Thanking Claire Frierson: A Call for Submissions

20120601_Schnaittacher_224She’s taught the oui’s and sí’s to countless students, lead trips to countries across the world, and has been a leader among French teachers. Now, after 32 years at Williston Northampton, Mme Claire Frierson is planning to retire—and the Language Department is creating a book of messages in thanks.

Whether you took one of her French and Spanish classes, or traveled with her to Canada, France, Honduras, Spain, Mexico, or the Dominican Republic, we know that Mme Frierson made an impression on your life. As a way to thank her for her long service—which has included chairing the Language Department, founding the school’s annual Quebec trip, advising the “As Schools Match Wits” team, and supervising the student newspaper, The Willistonian—the school is collecting messages of gratitude from former students and colleagues of Mme. Frierson.

As well as her work in the Language Department, those who know her may recall Mme Frierson making costumes for the Williston theater, presenting Diversity Conference workshops, and serving several terms on the Faculty Council. Her devotion to the French language went beyond the classroom—leading her to chair the American Association of the Teachers of French, and serve as Administrator for the National French Contest in Western Massachusetts. In 2005, Mme. Frierson received the Clapp Grant for independent study and French immersion in Morocco.

Please submit your messages of gratitude and memories to Language Department Head Nat Simpson at The collected submissions will be presented to Mme. Frierson upon her retirement at the end of the academic year.

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