by Nicole Compton
The school celebrates 75 years of excellence this year, a milestone for faculty, students, and alumni who have watched the school’s evolution into one of top independent schools in California.
Mr. and Mrs. Chadwick opened the independent school in 1935 with four students and the same basic mission principles that the school uses today. In 1940, Chadwick graduated its first class of six boys and five girls. In April of 1941, Chadwick became an accredited private secondary school in California.
Change and advancement have always been prevalent: two of the most important being the school’s decision to discontinue boarding in 1968 and the creation of the outdoor education program in 1978.
Physical changes to Chadwick have occurred over the years including the loss of 76.5 acres of the lower campus that was sold for 2.4 million dollars in October 1968 to pay off the school’s substantial debt.
More recently the Pascoe Pavilion was built in 1992 and the Geoffrey Alan Laverty Center for Performing Arts in 2004.
Throughout the years, the community has recognized the school for its academic excellence and extracurricular programs, one being its nationally recognized community service program.
The history of the school’s athletic program is strong as well.
The school joined the Prep League in 1946, and varsity football won its first CIF championship on November 27, 1986. In 1997, the team switched from eight-man football to eleven. Other sports were also successful as three national CIF swim records were broken by Phil Houser (Class of ’66) and Boo Gallas (Class of ’65).
“Being here at Chadwick since kindergarten, you really get to witness the progression of the school,” said junior Zach Goodman. “Everything seems like it has been taken to the next level, and the school still continues to advance as a whole after so many years. The marking of the 75th anniversary is a milestone for Chadwick and just another marking for many more years to come.”
Many Chadwick students went on to become nationally or internationally renowned, including professional tennis player Lindsay Davenport, Broadway and movie actress Liza Minnelli, Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Peter Davis ’53, founder and editor of Rolling Stone magazine Jann Wenner ’63, The Brady Bunch’s Mike Lookinland ’78, Oscar winning screenwriter and director Robert Towne, and two of Ronald Reagan’s children.
Celebrations began last year for the anniversary and will continue throughout this year.
The Annual Spring Event will be an opportunity for a formal celebration of the momentous year, in addition to the recent successful homecoming festivities that took place during the week of September 27-October 3.
On Friday, October 1, alumnus Lance Bowling ’66 presented a slide show with commentary about the history of Chadwick to grades K-12 in Pascoe Pavilion. Middle and Upper School advisor groups then competed in a scavenger hunt organized by the Chadwick Parents Association.
Barbeques and class reunions enabled both current students and alumni to celebrate the 75th anniversary. The Upper School homecoming dance was moved to the gym to make room for alumni dinner on the main lawn.
The 75th anniversary of the school came at an optimal time, as Chadwick International School opened the doors of its second campus to over 200 students in Songdo, South Korea.
Headmaster Ted Hill said, “As part of this anniversary year celebration, we will take the opportunity to recognize and celebrate the inspiring principles upon which the school was founded and which we seek to follow today, as well as the wonderful people who have taught, gone to school, or sent their children here. We will, of course, also have ample opportunity to enjoy and appreciate the remarkably beautiful place where we have all had the good fortune to spend some part of our lives.”