In normal times, Thursday, May 14, 2020, would have been the Senior Class’s last day of school at St. Mark’s. When the day ended, the boys would have removed their blue senior shirts and draped them over the Perot Quadrangle sign in a tradition signifying the end of their time as students and the passing of the torch to a new senior class. Though classes have not been held on campus for nearly two months, St. Mark’s was determined to continue this tradition. With an abundance of caution and strict health guidelines, the Class of 2020 was invited back to campus for a Blue Shirt Parade, featuring a line of faculty and staff cheering on their seniors. As each family pulled their car in front of Nearburg Hall, the senior handed one of his blue shirts to Eugene McDermott Headmaster David Dini to be draped over the Perot Quadrangle sign. Seniors and their families waved to their teachers, shared their college plans, and promised to keep in touch as the Class of 2020 heads off into the world.
As they drove through the parade, each senior also received a copy of the 2020 Marksmen yearbook. Normally, seniors, their date, and their parents gather with faculty and administrators each May for the Marksmen Ball where the yearbook is presented. It's at that event where the yearbook dedication is announced to the surprise of the recipient. While COVID-19 prevented Marksmen Ball from happening, this year’s yearbook dedicatee was still surprised.
On the night before the Blue Shirt Parade, Mr. Dini asked Katy Rubarth to stop by his home, along with her sons Charlie ’20 and Oliver ’25. This was not an unusual request, as Ms. Rubarth serves as St. Mark’s Director of Communications, and has been a constant guiding force behind the School’s COVID-19 response and virtual learning plan. But she knew something was unusual when Mr. Dini met her on the front lawn, joined by Head of Upper School Colin Igoe, Associate Headmaster John Ashton, and publications advisor Ray Westbrook.
“There is a special gift for you today,” Mr. Dini said. “This is a reflection of what an incredible person you are and a reflection of the love, respect, and admiration that every Marksman and all of your colleagues have for you.”
Ms. Rubarth then received a copy of the yearbook, opened to the dedication page, which in part reads, “Because of her indomitable spirit and the strong examples she has set for all of us, Katy Rubarth is the recipient of the 2020 Marksmen yearbook dedication.” The page also includes a portrait of Ms. Rubarth, taken by her son Charlie.
“Ms. Rubarth was selected because of the personal impact she has made on all of our lives at St. Mark’s,” said Marksmen editor Reid Goldsmith ’20. “At the time of the selection, we had no idea the role she would play in bringing us together through the 10600 website. She has worked tirelessly to maintain the St. Mark’s community through these times.”
“Katy Rubarth is a person of immerse strength,” Mr. Dini added on the yearbook’s dedication page. “She embodies our motto, ‘Courage and Honor.’”