Educational Excellence Since 1912
Hamden Hall Country Day School
Educating students in PreSchool through Grade 12

Former Faculty Member Makes a Planned Gift

There were 19 new faculty members the year Martha Cutts joined the Hamden Hall community – indeed, some of the names are the MVPs in the lineup of legendary educators under the pines:  Betty Lou Blumberg, John Garfield, Whit Russell, and Dan Zibello to name a few.

It was the 1971-1972 school year, and Martha was hired by former Headmaster Jerry Whitson to teach German. Her 13-year career at Hamden Hall would ultimately lead her to Administrator status as the Assistant Director of Admissions and then Director of Admissions. She also chaired the Foreign Language Department prior to her work in Admissions.

“I loved admissions work,” said Martha from her home in Washington, D.C., where she and her husband, Steven, have resided for more than 30 years.

To formalize her appreciation for the school that “formed me as a teacher in many ways,” Martha and Steven, also a career educator, made a Planned Gift to Hamden Hall.

“We have no children and were in a position to make some Planned Gifts to various schools,” she explained. “It’s a way to make a statement about a place that’s meant a great deal to you.”

Martha is a believer in the benefits of a Planned Giving program – she helped establish such a program at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI at American University), where she takes classes alongside other retirees and serves on the Board of Directors. 

“Curiosity never retires,” she maintained.

Martha retired at age 70 and finished her career as the Head of School at Washington Latin Public Charter School in D.C. When she joined that community, the school was only in its second year. Eight and a half years later, Martha had succeeded in a number of goals and objectives including garnering a permanent campus for the formerly transient institution. The school had started in a church and ultimately called six locations home before landing a permanent facility.

A summer 2022 visit to the Nutmeg State allowed Martha to return to her roots and tour our Whitney Avenue campus. She marveled at the changes and allowed herself to do a little reminiscing. She recalled when former Headmaster Dick Dolven learned she was a runner and asked her to coach the Cross Country Team. That role challenged her to run the Boston Marathon after she brought the team to view the event.

“A lot of schools don’t realize how important the culture of a school is to its success,” said Martha, further noting that Hamden Hall, with its supportive faculty and support of faculty, definitely flourished in that capacity.
“Hamden Hall completely changed my career. I ended up being in education for 47 years. My years at Hamden Hall were wonderful years. We had a great team of faculty.”

Hamden Hall Country Day School

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