TC Remembrances | Teachers College Columbia University

Skip to content Skip to main navigation

TC Remembrances

TC Remembrances

TC Remembrances

Renee Darvin, Instructor and Student Teaching Coordinator in TC’s Art and Art Education program, and former Director of Art for the New York City Department of Education. During the late 1970s and ’80s, Darvin chaired the art department at Beach Channel High School in Queens, recruiting a faculty that included Bruce Degen, who later co-created “The Magic Schoolbus” children’s books and TV shows. Darvin championed arts curricula in the city’s schools, telling the New York Times, “We have kids who write on the walls because that’s all the art they know.” Contributions can be made to the Renee Darvin School Art League Scholarship Fund, The School Art League, 137 East 25th St, 7th Fl, NYC 10010, or Art Education Scholarship, c/o Judith Burton, Teachers College, Columbia University, 525 West 120th St., Box 78, NYC 10027.

William P. Foster (Ed.D., 1955), founder and long-time director of the Marching 100 Band of Florida A&M University. The New York Times said Foster had “revolutionized the once-staid world of collegiate marching bands,” replacing fight songs and John Philip Sousa marches with jazz, rock and choreography that, as he said, “slides, slithers, swivels, rotates, shakes, rocks and rolls.” The Marching 100 played songs by James Brown at the bicentennial of the French Revolution in Paris. It has also played at the Super Bowl, presidential inaugurations and the Grammy Awards. Foster’s pupils included the jazz musicians Cannonball and Nat Adderley.

Harold W. McGraw, Jr., who donated more than $1 million in 1999 to support TC’s Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media. “Harold McGraw’s gift to the Institute was hugely important,” said Richard Lee Colvin, Director of the Hechinger Institute. “His belief in the importance of the media in telling the stories of educators and education was an inspiration that we’ve tried to live up to over the past decade.” From 1974–82, McGraw was CEO of what is now the McGraw-Hill Companies, a top-ranked publisher of textbooks for colleges and elementary and post-secondary schools co-founded by his grandfather. Under his leadership, the company more than doubled its revenue and tripled its earnings per share, and fought off a takeover bid by American Express. McGraw retired as Chairman Emeritus in 1988.

Robert L. Pace, former chair of TC’s Music Education department. Pace studied at Juilliard School of Music with the famed Josef and Rosina Lhévinne. He earned master’s and doctoral degrees at TC, taught at Juilliard, became head of piano instruction at TC in 1952 and department chair in 1969. Pace’s theories on music instruction, which stress the development of each student’s musical literacy and creativity, and his innovative ideas about group teaching, have had a major impact on music study throughout the world. He served as Executive Director of the International Piano Teaching Foundation and on a committee appointed by President Kennedy to study music in the United States. Pace received the Music Teachers National Association Achievement Award and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Music Educators National Conference.

Rosalea Schonbar, Professor Emeritus, Psychology and Education. Schonbar’s more than 50 years on TC’s faculty included service as Director of Clinical Training. She taught courses in psychology ethics and “Women and Mental Health.” Her research included investigation of altruistic moral judgment among the elderly, and the function of stereotype in social distance. Schonbar served as President of the New York State Psychological Association. She was a member of the council that organized, wrote and contributed to the passage of the New York State Psychology Licensing Law in the 1950s. Contributions to a scholarship fund in Schonbar’s name should be made out to Teachers College, Columbia University, indicating Rosalea A. Schonbar Scholarship Fund in the memo section, and mailed to TC’s Office of Development and External Affairs, 525 West 120th St., Box 306, NYC 10027.

Margaret (Peggy) Decker, (M.A., 1948), taught middle school on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Decker (left) is pictured here at the 1939 World’s Fair in Queens. The photo was sent by her son, photographer and art teacher David Paone.

Published Friday, Dec. 17, 2010