A Weekend to Remember
The atmosphere was one of fun, fellowship, and celebration as more than 300 alumni flooded campus for the Black Alumni of Dartmouth Association (BADA) 50th Anniversary. From catching up over informal walks around the Green to a panel on Black philanthropy to a festive and elegant Saturday night gala, the weekend was a rousing success as Black alumni from classes spanning eight decades attended the weekend-long, golden anniversary celebration.
“There are rare moments when place, people, and purpose come together in a way that sparks magic. The BADA 50th Reunion was just such a moment. As over 400 alums, from a founder of BADA (Garvey Clarke, Esq.’ 57) to 2021s, came together in love and friendship, new relationships with each other and the College were forged. The joy was indescribable. Connecting with the students was edifying for all parties. Passions for the place and each other were renewed, and the AAM parties were lit—I am still tingling! As we passed the torch to the next generation of BADA, we are well-positioned for the next 50 years,” said Adrienne “Tee” Lotson ’82, one of the co-chairs of the weekend.
For co-chair Ricki Fairley ’78, commemorating BADA was especially poignant as her father was one of the alumni who in 1972 helped to found the group. “The BADA 50th surpassed my vision. I know my dad, Richard Fairley ’55, was smiling down on us. There was nothing but love and joy all around us. Hanging out with Garvey Clarke ’57 was a blessing I will always treasure. I truly loved watching and experiencing everyone just loving on each other and making yet another awesome Dartmouth memory,” said Fairley.
Building Intergenerational Bridges Between Alumni
Alumni of all ages came together not only to connect with old friends but to forge new connections grounded in a rich history and uplifted by future possibilities.
“So much joy this weekend! Feeling more proud and connected and understanding of what being Black at Dartmouth means. I’ve genuinely missed the green of this campus. Grateful for new friends, and lifelong homies, godfathers, and aunties,” shared Imani Simone Graham ’16.
“BADA 50 was an amazingly rejuvenating and uplifting experience. While standing in a place that provided me with both blessings and trauma, Dartmouth alums and current students gave my heart joy and my mind profound optimism,” remarked Kenneth Montiero ’76.
Optimistic About the Future
Since 2018, Karim Marshall, Esq. ’03 has served as BADA’s president. As he prepares to hand over the mantle to president-elect Maria Cole ’84, he is optimistic about the group’s future.
“I am excited about the opportunities ahead for BADA. Our membership is strong and energized,” Marshall said. “Such a strong turnout, even amid COVID, reflects the intensity of the bond we share. The Reunion was a triumph. The presence of some of our founders, along with our senior members and undergraduates, was an uplifting reminder of our past and the promise of our future. We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to the Reunion planning committee, led by Tee Lotson and Ricki Fairley. They worked with Alumni Relations to put on a great event kicking off a year of celebration and reconnecting with each other and the College.”
BADA’s 50th anniversary is one of three Dartmouth milestones recognized in 2022, including the 50th anniversaries of coeducation and the Department of Native American and Indigenous Studies. To hear more from BADA alumni, check out the 50 for 50 Storytelling Project, which includes stories about fifty alumni from these milestone communities. BADA reunion co-chair Ricki Fairley ’78 was recently featured as a guest on the 50 for 50 Storytelling Project Podcast.