Craig Jewell
Kellogg Grant Winners Stand Together

2020 Kellogg Grant recipients Victor Vargas (left) and Tess Adams (right) with Head of School Pieter Mulder (middle)

At Monday’s all-school meeting, the 2020 recipients of the “Kellogg Grants” were announced by Head of School Pieter Mulder.  Kellogg Grants are awarded each February in honor of James C. Kellogg ‘33, and are bestowed upon two members of the community (faculty and/or staff), who have contributed in a special way by virtue of their tenure and their commitment to Berkshire, so that they may enjoy a well-deserved vacation away from school. 

This year’s first recipient, Victor Vargas, has been a member of the housekeeping team since 2003 and is known particularly well to those who work and reside in Allen House and make use of the Kenefick Center for Learning. Mulder spoke of the tireless commitment and strength of character displayed by Victor Vargas: “His humility, his kindness, and the respect that he shows to others sets the standard for the community and we are all better for how he shares himself with all of us. He often eagerly dodges the spotlight because of his quiet steadfast manner, but everyone here who intersects with him and his work knows that he is hugely deserving of it.”  

After a community-wide standing ovation, Mulder introduced the second recipient, Director of Counseling Tess Adams. Describing her contributions Mulder shared, “She is principled, patient, thoughtful, and provides vital support to our community.  Her reach across campus is considerable, directing our counseling efforts and supporting the emotional well-being of all our students and developing the curriculum for our student life, health and wellness, and “For Life” programs. She is always available, often 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and we are forever grateful for her leadership, her care, and her commitment to Berkshire.” With sustained enthusiasm, the community stood again to honor Ms. Adams as she joined the stage.  

Elizabeth Kellogg’s intention in her gift of this grant 36 years ago was to continue the excitement and kindness that her husband shared with others throughout his lifetime. The impact of today’s grants highlighted the very real excitement of a well-deserved vacation and the celebration of a community acknowledging the commitment and service of two highly deserving recipients.