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Tom Cohen '64

In 1983, Tom Cohen '64 read a book that changed his life. Written by David James Duncan, The River Why is the story about Gus Orviston, a fishing prodigy, who struggles to come to grips with the modern world. Cohen first discovered the book while working as an independent filmmaker following several years in television production at KQED-TV. In 1984, he bought the rights from Sierra Club Books. "I read the book and loved it. I knew that it would make a great independent movie," he said. With the help of John Jay Osborn, Jr., a friend best known for his book The Paper Chase, the two completed a script. After a few years of trying to secure financing, he put the film on hold to attend Hastings College of Law where he graduated in 1991. Cohen went on to build a successful career as an entertainment lawyer and civil litigator in the years to come.

Fast forward to 2008 and Cohen and his wife Kristi Denton Cohen are on location in northwestern Oregon on the banks of the Wilson River. Kristi, the film's producer, secured financing and signed on the stellar cast that includes William Hurt (Kiss of the Spider WomanBody HeatChildren of a Lesser God), Kathleen Quinlan (Apollo 13), William Devane (Knots Landing), and Zach Gilford (Friday Night Lights). “The River Why” hit the big screen in 2010.

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Cohen has also directed and produced two films. The first of which was Hungry Reunion (1980), a reunion documentary featuring such well known personalities as Bill Cosby, Mort Sahl, Lenny Bruce, Jonathan Winters and Professor Irwin Corey; they all got their starts at San Francisco's legendary Hungry I comedy club. The second, Massive Retaliation (1985), starred the young Jason Gedrick and featured a group of survivalists who head to a retreat in order to discuss how to save the world from the cusp of World War III.
 
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Alumni News

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  • Another successful year for The Webb Fund!

    Between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018, over 1,500 donors supported Webb by making a gift to The Webb Fund! Early calculations show that more than $1.65 million was donated to support Webb's areas of greatest need. Thank you for your support! If you have questions about making gift, please contact The Webb Fund Office at giving@webb.org or call (909) 482-5288.
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  • Jean E. Miller

    Jean E. Miller In Memoriam

    We learned from Jinx Tong (VWS dean from 1991-1996, and director of residence from 1983-1991) that Jean E. Miller passed away on Tuesday, May 22 at the age of 90 years old.   
     
    Jean was born in Brockton, Massachusetts in 1928. She attended Pembroke College (the coordinate women’s college to Brown University) and graduated with an A.B. in English in 1949. She enjoyed a long and celebrated career as an educator in private schools across the country.
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  • Head of Schools Taylor Stockdale speaks at Webb's annual Head's Reception on May, 19, 2018.

    PHOTOS: Over 50 Attend Annual Head's Reception

    Over 50 people gathered at Head of Schools Taylor and Anne Stockdale's home last month for Webb's annual Head's Reception.
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  • Alan Hau ’04

    Alan Hau ’04 Launches New Business With Philanthropic Mission

    Alan Hau ’04 hopes to make a positive impact on the LGBTI community in Hong Kong with his new business, Wooven.
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Webb News

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  • iGen Expert Dr. Jean Twenge Speaks at Webb’s Opening Days

    As part of Webb’s Opening Days, expert and author Dr. Jean Twenge will speak on her 2017 book iGen: Why Today’s Super-Connected Kids Are Growing Up Less Rebellious, More Tolerant, Less Happy—and Completely Unprepared for Adulthood—and What That Means for the Rest of Us. Dr. Twenge is a professor of psychology at San Diego State University and has appeared on the NBC Nightly News, Dateline NBC, National Public Radio and elsewhere. Her research has been covered in the New York Times, The Washington Post, Time and Newsweek.
     
    Just last week, on August 2, reporter Laura Pappano covered Dr. Twenge’s research and how the iGen generation is transforming education across the country...for the New York Times.
     
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  • Another successful year for The Webb Fund!

    Between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018, over 1,500 donors supported Webb by making a gift to The Webb Fund! Early calculations show that more than $1.65 million was donated to support Webb's areas of greatest need. Thank you for your support! If you have questions about making gift, please contact The Webb Fund Office at giving@webb.org or call (909) 482-5288.
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  • Webb 2018 Commencements in Pictures

    On Saturday, June 2, members of the Class of 2018 were welcomed into the hallowed ranks of Webb alumni. At 10:30 a.m. on Faculty Field, 50 Vivian Webb girls received their diplomas. Entrepreneur and educator Melissa Barnes Dholakia ’87 provided an engaging, memorable commencement address. Barnes Dholakia is a founder of MBD Partners which supports new and existing public K-12 schools in areas of school design, goal setting, monitoring and performance reporting. Her work focuses on increasing opportunities and outcomes for students, especially the educationally underserved.
     
    At 5:00 p.m. on the Alamo Lawn, World-Series ring-bearer Jeff Luhnow ’84 offered his career in Major League Baseball as a parable in perseverance and unbounded thinking to 49 Webb School of California boys. Luhnow is the general manager of the Houston’s Astros; he was previously the vice president of scouting and player development for MLB’s St. Louis Cardinals.
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  • The Webb Schools

    Webb and Hotchkiss were among four leading boarding schools recently recognized for encouraging and fostering independence. Study International based in Europe, an organization that provides independent news and counseling for international students, highlighted Webb in a feature on the virtues of boarding schools.
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