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Hiram Hunn Awards

September-October 2007

Six alumni are to receive this year’s Hiram S. Hunn Memorial Schools and Scholarships Awards, presented by the Harvard College Office of Admissions and Financial Aid. Hunn, a member of the College class of 1921, recruited and interviewed prospective students for more than 55 years in Iowa and Vermont; this year’s winners, who are recognized for their work on schools and scholarships committees worldwide, have collectively performed more than 165 years of service. They are to receive their awards at an October 19 ceremony.

Gerald Maslon

Gerald Maslon ’45, LL.B. ’50, of Greenport, New York. Maslon has helped young people from Long Island find their way to Harvard for more than 25 years. He has interviewed countless undergraduates from foreign countries and diverse backgrounds, as well as different generations of candidates from the same local families. His interviews are characterized by warmth and care, as evidenced by his invitation to this year’s Commencement by the family of a senior whom he had interviewed.

Peter Strauss

Peter Strauss ’54, M.B.A. ’58, of Scarsdale, New York. As a volunteer for more than three decades, Strauss has interviewed many hundreds of applicants from dozens of New York City schools. He enjoys the range of backgrounds he encounters, is gratified by what the students he knows go on to achieve as alumni, and appreciates the fact that his work allows him an insider’s glimpse into the city’s schools and their personnel.

Claire Pirani Russell

Claire Pirani Russell ’55, of Marion, Massachusetts. As a veteran member of the executive board of the Harvard Club of New Bedford-Fall River, Russell has been an active interviewer since 1981. She represents the College at numerous fairs and community events throughout Southeastern Massachusetts and has had outstanding success in broadening the pool of applicants from that region. She credits former dean of admissions Fred Jewett ’57, M.B.A. ’60, with inspiring her to work with prospective students.

Cynthia Morss Travis

Cynthia Morss Travis ’59, of San Francisco. Travis has sought out talented Californians for two decades and was chair of the Harvard schools and scholarships committee for a decade. She strives to make the interview process comfortable for  every candidate, and has helped to train novice interviewers in student-friendly approaches.

Miriam Gerber Kaplan

Miriam Gerber Kaplan ’67, of Memphis. Kaplan began interviewing in 1991 and a year later became chair of the local schools and scholarships committee, a position she still holds. She has also made valuable contributions to college admissions in general by creating (with Ann Indingaro ’68 and former senior admissions officer John Harwell) a videotape for high-school guidance counselors on writing effective college recommendations.

Edward E. Poliakoff

Edward E. Poliakoff ’67, of Columbia, South Carolina. Upon settling in South Carolina in 1975, Poliakoffcreated a Harvard Club (of which his son, Eli ’00, is now president). Throughout the years, Poliakoffhas been active at all levels of schools and scholarships work—from interviewing and presenting Harvard Book prizes to hosting young admissions officers visiting the region. In addition, he has helped his original mentor, former dean of admissions Fred Glimp ’50, Ph.D. ’64, with the Harvard Campaign and the Harvard College Fund.

Roderick MacLennan

Roderick MacLennan of Truro, Nova Scotia. Honored not as an alumnus, but as the unofficial ambassador to the Canadian Maritime Provinces, MacLennan has helped make it possible for young Maritimers to aspire to higher education and has often provided generous support and supplies where needed. (MacLennan’s own son, Bruce, is in the class of 1990.)