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Girl with the Arrow

Joan Loudon Perkins '62 (May 2007)
Kianu alumna


Joan Loudon Perkins, XAN '62, has been a shining light not only for the 1962 Kianus, but also for the entire Muskie class of 1962. Joanie has family ties to Kianu, but more importantly, she embodies the spirit of Kianu -- bright, capable, energetic, focusing on relationships, fun-loving and a true leader. Our class of 1962 thinks of Joanie as our "heart", the one who embraces us all in her wide circle of love.

In 2002, at our class' 40th reunion, Joanie organized a XAN presentation by 1962-ers to the current active XAN president at the Kianu House. The presentation was an old Kianu president's gavel, which had gotten lost in someone's basement (not Joanie's, by the way), that was being returned to the Kianu House. Many of us 1962 Kianus showed up to present the gavel, and then got to talking about how much fun we had together. We decided we would like to reunite annually, instead of waiting five years for the next Muskie reunion!

In 2004, seven of us 1962 Kianus met at Sally Steinhauer's home in Fairfax, Virginia, for a weekend of sight-seeing in Washington DC. In 2005, we met at Phyl Knapper Ross' home in Washington, PA, and toured Pittsburgh. In 2006, thirteen of us converged at Marianne Jackson Uschelbec's home in South Carolina, including a trip to Charleston. Our reunion this year (2007) coincides with our 45th class reunion in New Concord, this time including spouses, venturing to The Wilds. Plans for 2008 are pending, but California is a possibility.

All of this is directly attributable to Joanie and her purple/gold heart! She is truly someone deserving the XAN award.

Marty Brouwer Grant ’62

This morning I received a copy of Marty Brouwer's nomination of Joan Loudon Perkins for the Girl with the Arrow award. I know you have received several nominations for Joanie during the last few weeks, and at the risk of being redundant, I would like to add one more. It is important people know that this is not just a nomination from a few individuals, but a nomination that comes from an entire group of Kianu sisters who shared a common experience as members of the same pledging class. For all those generations of more recent Kianu graduates, it is a reminder that the bonds they forged with Kianu at Muskingum can and often will, remain for decades into the future. However, to make that happen, they need individuals who have the spirit and enthusiasm to keep those relationships alive, and for us, that person has been embodied in Joanie Loudon. To be truthful, I have never felt much of a connection to awards. However, when I heard about the Girl with the Arrow award, I literally laughed and thought, "Who knew there was an award out there with Joanie's name on it?", because if there was ever a more appropriate match - this was it!

Jan Driggs Heise ’62

I would like to nominate Joan Loudon Perkins '62 for this honor. She is truly a Kianu through and through. She is so proud of Muskingum and has been a loyal Kianu all these years remembering special activities and songs!

Thank you for considering her.

Marilynn Klostermeyer Murrell ’62

At our 40th Muskingum class reunion - Joan Loudon Perkins observed that if we, the XAN class of '62 - kept meeting like this - we would not have many more times to meet. For some of us that was unthinkable. So much of our lives, thoughts, careers and marriage plans were formed in front of each other and with each other's help. How could we possibly not get together now that we had time and resources? SOOooo Joanie, always the consummate organizer, started an e-mail and phone campaign to get us together. Since the 2002 MC reunion - we, as many of us as could make it, have met in Scottsdale, Arizona, 2003; Fairfax, Virginia, 2004; Washington, Pennsylvania, 2005; Columbia, South Carolina, 2006 and back to New Concord, 2007. Joanie made sure the invitations included the entire pledge class, not just the graduates. She was relentless with urging, cajoling, encouraging and letting everyone know that if they did not attend they would be missing the time of their lives. Those of us who have attended agree with her. Now we would not and could not miss a single event. Because of Joanie we are reunited and stronger than ever. We know each other's addresses, snail-mail and e-mail; telephone numbers, cell and home; spouses; children; grandchildren; careers; retirement locations; hopes and dreams. Not much has changed. We are still willingly sharing our lives, joys and sorrows with each other and gathering the strength we always knew we had through Kianu.

Personally I cannot thank Joanie enough. Without her, this valued sisterhood, planted in college, would not have blossomed into the wonderful camaraderie we enjoy today.
Thanks Joanie,
Phyllis Knapper Ross ’62 (and endorsed by Janet Driggs Heise ’62)

1962 reunion picture
Picture from class of 1962 reunion in Washington D.C. (April 2004):
First row: Phyl (Knapper) Ross, Daryl (Sobehart) Ransom, Joan (Loudon) Perkins
Second row: Sue (Faris) Shadley, Marty (Brouwer) Grant, Sally (Steinhauer) Gripman, Marianne (Jackson) Uschelbec

The important part to me is that through Joanie's enthusiasm and love for Muskingum and being a Kianu, she has reminded us of how we came together as students and then became sisters. The times have been so precious getting back together with each other. It has been interesting to see how each of us has been affected by our XAN ties as well as how we are affecting each other now. If Joanie had not called and truly made each of us feel as if we would really be missed if we didn't show up, then we would have just been 'maybe yes' / 'maybe no' about coming together. She has given us the "push" which has enriched our lives. I personally don't know when I have laughed as hard and as long as we have done when we get together.

Sally Steinhauer Gripman '62

If you would like to nominate someone for this profile (active or alumna), please e-mail ruthcseaman(at)gmail(dot)com with your selection. Changes are made as nominations are received.

To see other honorees, click on month:

Last Update: May 2007