Penn 1993 Love Connections – Part 2

Since it’s Valentine’s Day this week, we asked our Penn 1993 classmates if they met their spouse at Penn. Many classmates responded with the story of how they met, if they met at Penn, and if they both graduated in 1993. We will be sharing these stories over a few posts. Here is the second installment of Penn Couples from the Class of 1993!
Stories included here:
  • Samantha (Helman) Lichtman, W’93, and Jeff Lichtman, C’93
  • Julie (Berliner) Bell, C’93, and Stephen Bell, C’92
  • Jackie Einstein Astrof, C’93, and Josh Astrof, C’93, W’93
  • Christine Lutton Foster, C’93, and David Foster, Eng’93
  • Marnie (Goldman) Altman, C’93, and Paul Altman, W’93
  • Tanya Dooley-Adija, C’93, and Onyango “Yang” Adija, W’93
  • Cindy Dauber Anapolsky, W’93, and Jeff Anapolsky, C’93, W’93
  • Ebru Ural, W’93, and Justin Sowers, Eng’93
  • Deb Brown, C’93, and Jef Pollock, C’93
  • Kerry Kennedy, C’93, and Brad Goldberg, C’93
  • Jon Tretler, C’93, WG’97, and Lisa Brichta Tretler, C’94, G’99, WG’99
  • Michelle (Cousins) Mott, C’93, NU’98, GNU’99 and Ako Mott, W’93
  • Stacey (Bucholtz) Leibowitz, C’93, RES’00, and David Leibowitz, C’93, L’00

Samantha (Helman) Lichtman, W’93, and Jeff Lichtman, C’93

 My wife – Samantha (Helman) Lichtman and I met at Penn. We started dating at the beginning of our Sophomore year, and have been together ever since. In fact, we celebrated 28 years together in September. We both graduated in 1993, and eventually ended up in Chicago where we still live and raise our three boys.
We actually met Freshman year.  We both lived in Community House in the Quad. We were friendly, but not necessarily friends. However, we both took a Political Science course second semester Freshman year. I didn’t go to too many classes because I was pledging a fraternity. One day in class toward the end of the semester I was sitting behind Samantha and saw that she had really good penmanship. I asked if I could photo copy her notes to help me study for the final. And then I asked if I could join her study group – I did think she was cute after all. She agreed to both. And then we ended up getting the same grade in the class – still a point of frustration for her. The year ended and we both went our separate ways for the summer.
When we came back Sophomore year, we were both at the Palladium one night at the beginning of school. I learned it was her birthday soon so I asked if I could take her out to celebrate. She agreed. A few days later, her friends asked her to go out for her birthday (they were really planning a surprise party) but she told them she had a date with Jeff Lichtman. So her friends found me and asked me to bring her to the party after the date. In reality, I had had a few too many drinks that night at the Palladium so I had forgotten about our date. I’m so thankful they reminded me. I took her out – we went to Chili’s just off campus (very fancy) and from there, to her surprise party. After that night, we just kept hanging out and it eventually turned into us dating and the rest is history.

Julie (Berliner) Bell, C’93, and Stephen Bell, C’92

We met at Penn. Evelyn Pan introduced us – a bunch of times – I think the fist time we met was in the area by the High Rises. I think we met sophomore year, but maybe earlier.
We went to a new year’s party in Houston bringing in 1992 and kissed at midnight – and have been together ever since. It was at Tom Schmidt’s, C’92, house in Bay Town. Rob Hernandez, C’92, Paul Linden, C’91, Kristen Garland, Jill Smith, C’93, W’93, were there. 
Stephen started with us but graduated in three years. He still affiliates with our class. We got engaged that year (1992) over Thanksgiving and married in September after graduation. Almost twenty-five years of marriage, with two girls aged 19 and 16.

Jackie Einstein Astrof, C’93, and Josh Astrof, C’93, W’93

Josh says we met freshman year walking in a big group to a fraternity party, but I…don’t remember that.  We definitely got to know each other over delicious rubber chicken Friday nights at Hillel. And we didn’t go on our first date until Senior Week. Speaking of leaving the best for last…

Christine Lutton Foster, C’93, and David Foster, Eng’93

A mutual ’93 friend, Emily Culbertson, introduced us. Although we were both in the Penn Band, we hadn’t met yet because Christine rode on the dry bus to out-of-town games and David rode on the not-dry bus. He likes to tell people we are a classic flute-trumpet romance.

We met our freshman year and started dating sophomore year (September 1990). We got married on August 10, 1996. Our guests tell us that they will never forget our wedding because the power went out in large portions of seven Western states (including the church where we got married) just before our ceremony.

Our families coordinated a joint dinner to celebrate our graduation that evening at a restaurant on Rittenhouse Square.
Some favorite Penn memories:
  • Attending the 1993 NCAA tournament game with the band. For us it was a return to Syracuse where we spent the summer of 1992 together (Christine was an intern at The Post-Standard newspaper. David worked in a Syracuse University lab and took organic chemistry).  This summer (2017) we returned to Syracuse for the first time since then as we rode our bikes on the Erie Canal from Buffalo to Albany with our three children (Katie, 17, William, 14, and Andrew, 12).
  • In 1994, we continued to eagerly follow the successes of the Penn basketball team. David was on a flight arriving in Philadelphia right as the team was finishing their first round NCAA tournament game against Nebraska. Christine was meeting David at the gate (remember when you could do that?) and as David walked off the plane, Christine screamed that Penn was leading! We listened together to the final minutes of the game standing at the gate in the Philadelphia airport on a Walkman (remember those?).
  • We spent our first New Year’s Eve after we got married at the Penn Club in New York.
  • Both of our roommates also married members of our class: Jeff Anapolsky married Cindy Dauber and Margaret Kane married Larry Schoen.

Marnie (Goldman) Altman, C’93, and Paul Altman, W’93

We met the first day of class freshman year. The scene was our freshman seminar class, Craft of Prose, in Bennett Hall. After class, while walking to Stouffer (chicken grillas!), Paul put on the charm and asked Marnie to dinner the next night, where we were joined by 10+ people on our ‘first date’ at Won’s Chinese Food next to Smokes. We dated all four years at Penn and, after both graduating in ’93, got married in 1995. We now have two kids (aged 12 and 15) and our oldest’s middle name is Bennett, as a tribute to that fateful day in September 1989.

Tanya Dooley-Adija, C’93, and Onyango “Yang” Adija, W’93

We are a Proud Penn couple!
Yang and I met moving in Junior year at DuBois House (Low Rise). We lived on the same floor. We found out that we were both from Long Island, and that was all it took to strike up a friendship. We had quite a few friends in common from back home, traveled in the same circles, but had never met.  We started traveling home together for breaks, enjoying long talks and each other’s company. We became best friends, and were inseparable. We continued dating through Graduate school, and eventually got married. Here we are 16 years of marriage and 2 beautiful daughters later, still just as happy as we were during those memorable Penn days.

Cindy Dauber Anapolsky, W’93, and Jeff Anapolsky, C’93, W’93

Cindy and Jeff met at Penn. Cindy lived in unrenovated Quad in Speakman. He lived down the hall in Butcher. The sign on Jeff’s door said he was from Schenectady, New York (where I was born). So I was looking to say hi. We met in the first week or two in a mutual friend’s room on the hall.  We have been a couple since our sophomore year at Penn.

We have been married 21 years.  We have a 17 year old daughter and a 13 year old son. We live in Houston, Texas.

It turns out that we went to the same preschool when we were 3 in Schenectady before my family moved away. I was in the AM class and Jeff was in the PM class. We never met then.

Ebru Ural, W’93, and Justin Sowers, Eng’93

A few then and now pics, you may notice a theme….I’d like to nominate Justin as most likely to arrive at the reunion wearing his (same) Penn 250th sweatshirt. We were introduced by mutual friends in the quad our sophomore year. We both graduated in ‘93, Justin from SEAS as a bioengineer and I from Wharton with concentrations in Marketing and  Multinational Management. After Penn, we both lived and worked in New York and were married in 2000 after earning our MBA’s. Justin and I have traveled near and far wearing our red and blue since 1993. Today we live in Central Florida with our two girls who are making the journey to the reunion to buy dad a new sweatshirt.

We are looking forward to seeing many dear friends and visiting campus as a family!

Editor: What is going on in the rollerblade photo?

Ebru: Just some shenanigans – for many years we used to rollerblade from the upper east side downtown to Battery Park City and I guess that day we got bored of skating side by side? Or we might assume that I was finding new ways to sweep Justin off his feet!
I remember one time he actually left his sweatshirt behind accidentally in a bed and breakfast in Cape May and they were nice enough to send it back!  Can you imagine our suspense since we had to take the train back to New York and call them from a landline in the days before cell phones to find out if it was still there.

Deb Brown, C’93, and Jef Pollock, C’93

How did Deb and I “meet” is a complicated question.  I met Deb when I first read her column in the Daily Pennsylvanian which she brilliantly titled, “See Ya in Church” which meant she, like me, was a Murph’s person.  We all know… there were Smoke’s people, and Murph’s people. And I was for sure all skylab all the time.  But I didn’t actually know her at all. But reading the title of the column, seeing her picture, and then reading the content of what she wrote, I knew I had to meet her.

I met her at some point through performing arts stuff, but we didn’t really connect. And then I saw her while working the Rolling Stone exhibit where I was serving coffee (I have no clue why I did that job), and exclaimed “Downtown Deborah Brown” which caused her to scurry away in fear.

But the real meeting was on her 21st birthday when I bought her a shot at the Palladium on Locust Walk.  That was the beginning of a long courtship that took 9 years, and a few cities (and countries) in between.  Best shot I ever bought.  And the rest is history.

Kerry Kennedy, C’93, and Brad Goldberg, C’93

Kerry Kennedy and Brad Goldberg were married July 26, 2002.

We met in September 1989 on our Freshman Hallway in Community House (Thomas Penn/McIlhenny). We were friends throughout Penn, and reunited in 1998 after Kerry attended Harvard Law School and Brad was living in Los Angeles working at Fox.

Around 8 years ago, we coincidentally met up with another double ‘93 Penn couple, Debbi and Brian Stern, while serving together on the Heart Committee for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and our girls now attend the same summer camp in Maine where we get to hang out every visiting day.

Editor’s note – you can read about Debbi and Brian in Part 1.

Jon Tretler, C’93, WG’97, and Lisa Brichta Tretler, C’94, G’99, WG’99

We met at a fraternity party in September 1990 – Lisa’s first week of freshman year (and not my fraternity either!)
Marriage Proposal – 1997.  I drove from New York City to Philadelphia on a brisk December day to pick Lisa up from Wharton for winter break where she was finishing the first semester of her MBA. Instead of a quick dinner and packing up the car, I cajoled her into a stroll down Locust Walk (for old times sake), and then I asked her to marry me right in front of the button (of course!). Rather than driving back to New York that night, I had a whole evening planned for us at the Four Seasons in Center City. The night included time to call our families with the news, champagne and strawberries in the room and a special dinner.
When we arrived at the room the key (yes, back when hotels had real keys) broke in the door. I couldn’t access the surprise of the champagne on ice and strawberries in the room waiting for us. While we waited, the hotel put us into another room, down the hall, where we could hear them drilling for the key and breaking down the door because the hotel management was so mortified by the thought that they ruined the actual proposal.
Fortunately for me, I had already actually proposed and Lisa had already said yes and so we had a long laugh at seeing the hotel staff scramble to fix what they thought was a marriage proposal gone awry.

Michelle (Cousins) Mott, C’93, NU’98, GNU’99 and Ako Mott, W’93

How did you meet?

During Pre-Fresh. I was cutting a friend’s hair when she and her friends stopped by. We got to talking, and twenty-nine years later we still are.

Story about us?

That we were so close that the football crew used to call us “I-Chelle”.

Stacey (Bucholtz) Leibowitz, C’93, RES’00, and David Leibowitz, C’93, L’00

Near the end of our sophomore year, we were both eating dinner one night at Hillel and a common friend of both of ours, Justin Sambol was there as well. He introduced us, and the three of us had dinner together. I had a feeling about David and kept my eye out for him, but soon it was the end of the year. Summer arrived and we went our separate ways.
On the first day of junior year, in September 1991, we bumped into each other on Locust Walk and I accompanied him to the bookstore. We were both history majors and I convinced him to take a European diplomatic history course with Prof McDougall that I was taking. We started spending more and more time together and within about 3 weeks we were an item. We have been together ever since! He likes to claim that he got a better grade than me in that class (but we all know that is not true.)
After college graduation, he went to London for 3 years and I went to Baltimore. We did the long-distance relationship thing until his return in the Spring of 1996. At Homecoming, November 4, 1995, David flew in from London and surprised me. He proposed to me, down on one knee, in front of College Hall, and we were married in September 1996.

Love these Penn Love stories? Read Part 1! And stay tuned for Part 3!

Penn Class of 1993 25th Reunion Countdown

The weekend of February 9 – 10, 2018, marked 13 weeks until the 25th Reunion of the Penn Class of 1993 (May 11 – 14, 2018)! Meet us at the Button!

Join us we count down the weeks to our reunion #93tothe25th:

  • Do you have old photos or mementos from our time at Penn? Photos of Spring Fling? Football at Franklin Field? Classes at DRL? We are taking a trip down memory lane and would love for you to share your memories with our class in a future post. Please email us!
  • Follow us on Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram.
  • Classmates are invited to join our Facebook and LinkedIn groups.
  • Donate to The Penn Fund in honor of our reunion! We want to break the 25th reunion participation giving record and every gift matters!

Book Your Hotel Room for Alumni Weekend NOW!

The Marriott Downtown (where we had a Penn 1993 and a Penn Alumni room block) is sold out for Alumni Weekend. There are alternative hotels near by. We recommend booking ASAP! Please see our class website for additional details.

Penn Class of 1993 25th Reunion #93tothe25th


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