Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Newsmakers: Nancy Cicco ’84

Nancy Cicco '84Nancy Cicco ’84, of York, Maine, was named the editor of the Hampton Union in January. As editor, she will be responsible for directing the coverage and setting policies for the newspaper published by Seacoast Media Group, located in Portsmouth, N.H. The paper is published twice weekly and covers the New Hampshire towns of Hampton, Seabrook, North Hampton and Hampton Falls. Seacoastonline.com featured a story about her new job. “Hampton residents can expect Nancy to be hard-working, accessible and fair, just what you want in a community newspaper editor,” said Howard Altschiller, executive editor of Seacoast Media Group. Cicco, who majored in English at Wheaton, has won several awards from the New Hampshire, Maine and New England press associations. After spending about 10 years in public relations and event planning, she became a reporter. “More often, reporters go on to careers in public relations, but for whatever reason, I did the opposite,” she said. Cicco worked as a freelance reporter for The Sun (Lowell, Mass.) for about two years before joining Seacoast Media Group, which publishes the daily Portsmouth Herald and four other local weekly papers. At various times over the past 13 years, she worked as a reporter and an editor. Her Wheaton experience helps her every day, she said. “However, beyond academics, Wheaton taught me about the importance of camaraderie and friendship and the importance of standing up for one’s convictions. Wheaton’s strength is its liberal arts offerings. Students will be well served by the school’s new journalism minor. It obviously helps reporters to have strong writing skills. Beyond writing skills, reporters need critical-thinking skills, a willingness to ask questions, and the ability to investigate and work hard. A love of history doesn’t hurt, either. Wheaton helped hone all of those skills in me.”

More online: seacoastonline.com

Photo by Rich Beauchesne / Seacoast Media Group


Newsmakers: Margaret Callahan ’86

Margaret Callahan '86Margaret Callahan ’86, principal of the Seacoast School of Technology in Exeter, N.H., recently was named Career and Technical Principal of 2011 by the New Hampshire Association of School Principals. In an article in her hometown newspaper, the Daily News (Newburyport, Mass.), several people praised her leadership style and her willingness to do everything from greeting school buses in the morning to wiping down counters in the culinary arts department. “It’s so exciting,” Callahan was quoted saying. “I’m just very proud and so proud of this school. This is a team effort; I have the best staff in the world, and the kids are just great.” Seacoastoline.com also wrote about her award, saying: “As a teacher and coach for many years at the elementary, middle, and high school levels in independent and public schools, Callahan knew how to be a strong leader. Her experience contributes to what she does every day.” Callahan joined the Seacoast School of Technology in 2005, and became principal in 2007. The school provides 13 specialized curricula to supplement the programs of local high schools, from biotechnology to culinary arts, aiming to give high school students the opportunity to delve deeper into their own career interests. Her interests led to her graduation from Wheaton in three years with a double major in economics and sociology. She earned her master’s degree at Simmons, and has done work toward a doctorate in education at the University of Massachusetts in Lowell. Callahan notes that her experience at Wheaton during a time when it was a women’s college inspires her work today. “Wheaton reinforced what I always knew about still-present inequities, such as the number of women in certain jobs and what women earn. I continue to talk to my students and staff about the inequities in the world that our girls will encounter on a daily basis. Recently, the Business NH Magazine reminded us that in New Hampshire, women earn $13,310 less than men…. Girls don’t hear these messages today like we did 25 years ago. As the leader of a school, I consider it to be one of my most important responsibilities to continue to focus on equality and to prepare girls to be strong for whatever role they choose in life.”—Elizabeth Meyer ’14

Read about Callahan at:

Photo by Rich Beauchesne / Seacoast Media Group


Newsmakers: Elle Morris ’90

Beautiful business: Morris goes to Mumbai

Elle Morris ’90 (above, right)

Elle Morris ’90 (above, right)

In October 2010, Elle Morris ’90, vice president/general manager of LPK Beauty, traveled to India with a colleague to do in-home research with women in the slums of Mumbai, India. The objectives of the trip were to understand women’s beauty and feminine care habits, daily routines, and dreams and aspirations. Morris says: “It was an incredible learning experience as well as a humbling one. These women’s lives are so different from our own. They have limited access to Mumbaiwater. They must get up at 4 a.m. in the morning and fill buckets, as it is only available for two hours a day, and then boil it. They live on $2 a day. There are no toilets in their home. I could go on and on. Yet they have joy that most Americans do not. We have a duty to market to developing markets in a responsible way, ensuring that what we export meets their needs and is biodegradable.” Morris is responsible for overseeing the general business development of LPK Beauty. She provides strategic oversight as its chief customer officer on hair care, feminine care and beauty brands, and helps to build, expand and revitalize brands around the globe. She is scheduled to speak about her India trip at the HBA Global Expo conference in New York City in June.


Newsmakers: Aaron Marks ’00

Aaron Marks 2000

The Marks family: Amanda Marks; Ruby, 19 months; Aaron Marks; Oscar, 19 months; and Murray, 4.

Public school cafeteria food can be a nutritional nightmare, but when Aaron Marks ’00 realized that his son’s preschool was serving doughnuts and “breakfast pizza” to toddlers, he couldn’t swallow it. A local news web site, Patch.com, reported that Marks organized a group of parents, and within three years the City Schools of Decatur (Georgia) had given their breakfast and lunch menus a makeover. Marks’s activism caught the attention of First Lady Michelle Obama, who referred to it in a speech in Alpharetta, Ga., on February 9. He was in the audience when Obama mentioned him in her talk, which centered on the first lady’s Let’s Move campaign against obesity and unhealthy eating. Obama quoted Marks as saying, “You just can’t take no for an answer. You have to be tenacious.” A philosophy major at Wheaton, Marks is an attorney. He notes that his Wheaton experience came in handy in this situation: “Wheaton, specifically Professor [of Philosophy] Nancy Kendrick, encouraged me to keep digging into an issue until it either was proven true or false. She encouraged ‘relentless inquiry’ until the issue was resolved. I have that type of personality already, but it was good to have that encouraged by my most influential professor.”

Read more: decatur.patch.com