ISAP Director Liz Jordan ’06 Speaks on Legal Challenges to Immigration Detention and Deportations

26 MARCH 2020 | 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM


After graduating from Yale with a BA in Political Science and Latin American Studies, Liz Jordan ’06 conducted human rights research in Madrid, Spain as a Fulbright Scholar. After graduating from NYU School of Law summa cum laude, she worked first as a Fellow with the Capital Appeals Project in Louisiana, where she represented capital defendants on appeal. She then represented immigrant children facing deportation in New York with The Door’s Legal Services Center. In 2017, Liz became the first CREEC (Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center) fellow, and based on her successful court cases, the non-profit organization created the Immigration Detention Accountability Project with her as director.

Involved in several high-impact legal challenges to immigration detention and deportations, she is in a position to let Yalies know what is happening in the escalating immigration crisis. Liz will talk about the increased numbers of people in ICE detention in poor conditions of confinement, practices at the border, and restrictions on asylum, and cases challenging these practices. She will also address trends specific to Colorado, including the involvement of congressional representatives in more oversight of detention.

Thursday, March 26th, 5:30-7:00, Kilmer, Lane, & Newman LLP, Odd Fellows Hall, 1543 Champa Street, suite 400, Denver. Light refreshments.$5 fee payable by PayPal or by check sent to Colorado Yale Association, P.O. Box 911, Denver, CO 80201. RSVP to Stephanie Grilli:


Starting a 1stGen Yale Chapter in Colorado

22 MARCH 2020 | 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM


1stGen Yale is a shared-interest group spearheaded by YAA Board of Governors member  Lise Pfeiffer Chapman SOM ’81: “I saw the need to connect alumni as an important resource for students who share being first-generation to college or graduate school and from low-income backgrounds…alumni from all schools connect with each other based on shared experiences and can give back to support current students.”

The Yale experience for some  may have included financial constraints and personal hurdles that were usually kept secret, compounding a sense of difference and isolation. Wondering what you were doing at Yale wasn’t unique to first-generation or low-income students, but these students had another dimension of feeling the odd-person-out that often included economic realities. From the vantage of distance and life successes, 1stGen Yale offers alumni an opportunity for openness and reflection, with the aim of making things better now.  By telling stories as former students in diverse careers, current students know that they are not alone: we all belong to the Yale family.

You don’t have to be a 1stGen-er to get involved. There are many ways you can be of value, including different forms of mentoring, supporting a newly created fund for current first-generation and low-income students, offering internships, participating in workshops and panel discussions, and more. Not just for conjuring up memories, the shared-interest group is very active, with on-campus activities and regular webinars. Featured in a recent Yale Alumni Magazine, 1stGen Yale has rapidly become a place for connection among alumni and has been a force for change at the university.

On Sunday, March 22nd, starting at 3:00 pm, there will be a get-together as a first step to forming a Colorado chapter of 1st Gen Yale. With no future obligation, come to the Wynkoop Brewing Company, 1634 18th Street Denver. Order off the menu. Street parking is free on Sunday, and the Wynkoop is a short walk from Union Station. Although not a first-generation student, past CYA president John Boak ’70 was a part of the birth of 1stGen Yale. He and CYA president Stephanie Grilli will be there. Please RSVP:


Sarah McKenzie ’93, “Sanctum”: Reception & Artist Talk

5 MARCH 2020 | 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM

Sarah McKenzie, “Suspension (Yale University with Sol Lewitt and Joel Shapiro, 2018), (2019)

Nationally recognized artist, Sarah McKenzie ’93 is known for paintings of the built environment, and in her most recent ongoing series White Walls, she focuses on museum and gallery interiors. These minimal “white cube” spaces of modernist design featuring stark rectangles and abstract artworks are the basis of complex geometric compositions that alternate between surface and depth, non-figurative constructions and heightened realism.

My work often appears photo-realistic when seen in reproduction, but–seen in person–the painted surface asserts itself forcefully, and the viewer is able to determine the process by which the image was made. This is important to me. I care deeply about making paintings–physical objects with which the viewer will have a direct, visceral relationship and response.

Including perfectly rendered stylistic quotations within her paintings, Sarah takes us a step back to suggest how “impersonal and sacred settings” affect the experience and the social construction of a work of art.  With her third solo exhibition with David B. Smith Gallery, Sanctum, she hopes to raise issues of access and audiences, with unpopulated art spaces that “may offer a sense of sanctuary to some” and that “others may feel marginalized or shut out entirely.” Click HERE for Westword review.

A resident of Boulder, Sarah is one of the founders and guiding spirit of Tilt West, Denver’s hub for community exchange, critical dialogue, and provocative conversations on art, ideas, and culture.

Including two paintings that feature the Yale University Art Gallery, Sanctum opens Feburary 5th. On Thursday, March 5th. Come to David B. Smith Gallery, 1543 Wazee Street, Denver, for a private reception and artists talk for Colorado Yalies and guests from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. The gallery is walking distance from Union Station. Please email Stephanie Grilli to let her know you plan to attend:


Feb Club Emeritus 2020


In 2008 in New York City, two alumni at a class of ’87 lunch remembered the Yale College tradition of nightly mid-winter parties during dreary New Haven February: a group of students or organization would be handed down the solemn task of organizing 28 (29) parties around the Yale campus and spreading the word among the student population. They got the idea that this could be adapted as an alumni activity, and thus Feb Club Emeritus was born. With the advantage of the internet, it quickly caught on, with alumni from all schools and programs in cities around the world participating.

In past years, the Colorado Yale Association has had the honor of holding more Feb Club events than any other club or region. Come join fellow Yalies for an evening of fellowship and cheer! You run your own tab for all events, except for Boulder’s pre-ordered food.

Grand Junction: Saturday, February 1st, Goat & Clover Tavern, 336 Main Street #104, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm. Craig Niemeyer ’89:

Colorado Springs: Tuesday, February 11th, Oskar Blues Grill & Brew, 118 North Tejon Street, 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm (happy hour ends at 6:00).  Jonathan Kaufman Scher CN ’12 MSN ’13:

Denver: Tuesday, February 11th, White Pie, 1702 Humboldt Street, Denver, starting at 5:30 pm. White Pie is owned by 2 brothers from New Haven, who claim their pizza is New Haven-style. RSVPing helps secure adequate seating at the restaurant. Samantha Lichtin ’16:

Golden: Tuesday, February 18th, Miner’s Saloon, 1109 Miner’s Alley, starting at 5:30 pm.  Christina Schultz MBA ’04:

Crested Butte: Monday, February 24th, Montanya Distillers, 212 Elk Avenue, starting at 5:30 pm. Janae Deverell ’98:

Boulder: Tuesday, February 25th, The Post Brewing Company (Velvet Elk Lounge), 2027 13th Street, starting at 5:30 pm. Some pre-ordered food provided, and a $10 donation is appreciated. Run your own tab for drinks. RSVP to: Alison Jaffe ’97,; or Bob Morehouse ’68,; or Mark Huey ’96,

Steamboat Springs: Wednesday, February 26th, Brick, 1195 Bangtail Way (just past the Meadows parking lot entrance), starting at 5:30 pm. Sarah Katherman ’82:

Fort Collins: Wednesday, February 26th, Equinox Brewery, 133 Remington Street, starting at 5:30. Brandon Morgan ’16:

Vail/Edwards: Friday, February 28th, Harvest @ Sonnenalp Golf Club, 1265 Berry Creek Road, Edwards, 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm. Optional dinner after; email Sally Austen ’74 for dinner:

Glenwood Springs: Saturday, February 29th, Hotel Colorado, 526 Pine Street, bar area, 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm. Rob Gavrell ’97:

Other Feb Club events are expected and will be posted. If you would like to set one up in your neck-of-the-woods, contact Stephanie Grilli: It only takes 2 Yalies to make a Feb Club. Find a location, and the alumni club will get the word out. Alumni visiting Colorado might show up, due to the calendar on the Feb Club Emeritus website. If you’re traveling, you can find events in other cities.


How Life Emerged: Yale Scientists Make Groundbreaking Discovery, Reception & Talk at the University Club

24 FEBRUARY 2020 | 6:00 - 9:00 PM

Last October, Yale graduate School of Arts & Sciences alumni, Tyler Lyson PhD ’12 and Ian Miller PhD ‘07, made public their groundbreaking discovery as to how mammals evolved and came to thrive after the extinction of the dinosaurs. As characterized by George Sparks, president and CEO of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science where the two are Curator of Vertebrae Paleontology and Curator Paleobotany & Director of Earth & Spaces Sciences respectively, the significance of their work can’t be overestimated:

For the first time, exceptionally preserved animal and plant fossils from the critical first million years after the asteroid impact shine a light on how life emerged from our planet’s darkest hour…we now understand the birth of the modern world we live in today.

For decades, exploration of rock outcroppings in the primordial Denver basin came up empty in the search for the reset of life on Earth. The breakthrough came when Tyler hit upon examining the concretions that formed in sedimentary rock, and at Corral Bluffs east of Colorado Springs, he split open one and saw “a mammal skull staring back at me.” For this earth scientist from Mammuth, North Dakota, who had scrambled around the badlands as a child looking for fossils, this remarkable moment nearly brought tears to his eyes.

Once they knew what to look for, suddenly they began to find skulls about every fifteen minutes, and they came away with nearly a thousand vertebrae fossils with sixteen different kinds of mammals as well as 6000 plants fossils and 37,000 pollen grains. Their story has been told in a PBS Nova documentary The Rise of the Mammals.

We are thrilled that Tyler, Ian, and recent DMNS addition Holger Petermann PhD ’18 will present their findings and share the experience of a adding a major chapter to the understanding of how we came to be. On Monday, February 24th, come to the University Club, 1673 Sherman Street, Denver, for a reception starting at 6:00 with cash bar and passed appetizers, followed by their presentation and Q&A. Admission is $25. Meters in the area are free after 6, and spaces are usually readily had. The UClub is walking distance from Civic Center Station, the last stop for the  free 16th Street mall bus from Union Station.

Please purchase by Monday, February 17th. Use PayPal button below, or send a check to: Colorado Yale Association, P.O. Box 911, Denver, CO, 80201. If you opt for the latter, please notify Stephanie Grilli:


The First Women at Yale College: Chris Citron ’71 & Susan Cherniak Wei ’71 Attend the 50th Anniversary Celebration


left: Susan Cherniak Wei; right: Chris Citron on left

Over the weekend of September 19-22, 2019, women from the classes of 1971, 1972 and 1973 gathered in New Haven to celebrate Yale’s first coeducational admissions to Yale College. Among those in attendance were Colorado alumna Chris Citron ’71 and Dr. Susan Cherniak Wei ’71 MA ’79 PhD ’88. In addition, the September/October edition of Yale Alumni Magazine included an excerpt of a 1970 essay for a high school publication written by Chris, which is quoted in part below:

Yale is fully coeducational; it’s not just an experiment. However, if it continues its policy of admitting only 250 women per year, obviously only male leaders will be turned out. As society is now structured wholly under male leadership, unless Yale agrees that women are incapable of leadership roles (ignoring the dire shortage of competent professionals in so many fields), the University’s obligation is obviously to take itself out ahead of society and initiate a different admissions policy, so as to provide more women with this so-called leadership preparation. Furthermore, I would dispute the University’s role of annually churning out a set of so-called “leaders,” and substitute the goal of “capable individuals.” Brewster has even refused to meet with members of the Admissions Committee, who have taken the unusual step of publicly stating that the caliber of the boys being admitted for next year is substantially lower than that of the girls who are being turned away. You may have noted in the New York Times recently that the first semester marks for Yale girls were across-the-board higher than for the boys.