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by | Jan 18, 2019

Jon Edwards ’76

Donne wrote, “No man is an island,” but then again, he had never met the rugged Mainers who live in isolated pockets along the shore. Jon Edwards ’76 knows these Mainers very well—he photographs and documents their lives.

“They’re all interesting people, all of whom remind me of my childhood, summers in the Adirondacks,” he says.

Edwards’ photography of these hardscrabble farmers and fishers has garnered many awards, including a photographer’s fellowship grant from the Aaron Siskind Foundation, an invitation to be one of six Americans presenting at the 2011 International Forum on photography in Zhengzhou, China, and the Honickman First Book Prize from the Center for Documenatry Studies at Duke University.

photo by Jon Edwards, Parallel Lives, Zenzhou, China.
Parallel Lives, Zenzhou, China. Toned Gelatin-Silver Print 6.25” x 17.5” Image

Edwards’ path towards award-winning photography started with two hitchhikers he and his brother picked up outside of Boston. “They told us, ‘we’re hitchhiking across the country for co-op credit!’ and I said, ‘what’s the name of that college?’”

Though his high school counselor was convinced he would never get in, he was accepted and went with his parents’ somewhat dubious blessing. “I come from suburban and rural Republicans,” Edwards says. however, “they were happy that I just went to any college.” Once at Antioch, Edwards was a double major with both photography and environmental design.

photo by Jon Edwards, Orchard Portrait Selenium Toned Silver Gelatin Print
Orchard Portrait. Selenium Toned Silver Gelatin Print, 10”x10” Image

Co-op allowed Edwards to not just see the world, but to change the world and his life. His most memorable co-op was working in Mississippi for a prisoner’s rights project. Edwards was astonished at the fact that “most court-appointed attorneys that the kids had were horrible. And I said, ‘I could be a better lawyer than that!’”

After getting his law degree in 1982, he embarked on a career practicing environmental law in Maine. That’s when he started photographing Mainers. Edwards said he and the people he photographed bonded because “they lived their lives from the state’s natural resources, and I was there to protect natural resources.”

— Christian Feuerstein ’94


photo of Bradley Wilburn

Bradley Wilburn ’84 checking in to spread a little warmth and energy from the Pacific Northwest to my extended Antioch community. Light snow is blanketing the lower elevations in Seattle and i’m feeling pretty jazzed. Loving winters in Washington—snow and cold temperatures. Snow-covered trails provide an opportunity to hear nature’s heartbeat while hiking Tiger Mountain, my day hike of choice. In this moment of reflection I want to congratulate all those involved in reopening the college. We came together rallying around a common goal and resurrected our college. The work is not yet finished, we must hold to another common goal to raise this college to a place of economic, cultural and social sustainability. It is so good to be alive, honoring it, by living up to Antioch’s credo. Latest book read, John Carlos’ biography.if you do not know his story, which is our collective history, you need to check it out. This past summer I had an opportunity to work on a Green stormwater infrastructure program for the city of Seattle’s Public Utilities Department. It was a rewarding experience to better understand green technologies mitigating rainfall in urban environments. There is a rumor which has made its way all the way to the East Coast, that Seattle gets its fair share of liquid sunshine. I like to set the record straight, it doesn’t do a thing for one’s complexion. Peace!


photo of Elysia Borowy-Reeder
(Photo by Angela Brockelsby)

“There is no college or university in the country that makes a more profound difference in a young person’s life or that could create a more effective person,” she says, quoting Loren Pope, author of Colleges That Change Lives.

— Christian Feuerstein ’94

Elysia Borowy-Reeder ’94 is the executive director of Raleigh’s Contemporary Art Museum, which opened last year.

“I seek out work that has a creative voice and is intuitive with choice of media, material, and subject matter,” she says. “I also look for larger themes that engage in such socio-culturally relevant issues and that touch on what it means to be human.”

before becoming the founding director of CAM, Borowy-Reeder held senior leadership positions at the school of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. She has served as a visiting faculty member, guest lecturer, and instructor at a number of institutions, including Columbia College’s Department of Arts, Entertainment, and Media Management in Chicago.


photo ofthe cover of Desert Rose by Edythe Scott Bagley

The University of Alabama press announced the upcoming publication of Desert Rose: The Life and Legacy of Coretta Scott King written by King’s sister Edythe Scott Bagley ’47. Bagley partnered with award-winning author Joe Hilley during the editing stages to ensure the story was complete, comprehensive, and compelling.

Although Bagley passed away in June of 2011, her dream of having her sister’s story published is being carried on through her niece, Bernice A. King, and son, Arturo S. Bagley.

Desert Rose—scheduled to be released on April 27—details Coretta Scott King’s upbringing in a family of proud, land-owning African Americans with a profound devotion to the ideals of social equality and the values of education, as well as her later role as her husband Martin Luther King Jr.’s most trusted confidant and advisor.

The book “provides an excellent ground-level view of African American life in Perry County and in Alabama’s Black Belt,” said Hasan Kwame Jeffries, author of Bloody Lowndes: Civil Rights and Black Power in Alabama’s Black Belt.

Desert Rose will be available for purchase through the University of Alabama Press and other booksellers.