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Beloved Faculty Member Ned Clapp’s Estate Gifts to Support Gilman’s Future

Edward “Ned” L. Clapp ’59

Edward “Ned” L. Clapp ’59 was a Gilman icon. Although he began his career at Gilman in 1969 teaching in the Lower School, Mr. Clapp is best known for his influence in the formation and growth of the Middle School. Decades of Gilman Middle School students remember Mr. Clapp’s infamous “Dreaded Bag” of geography quizzes and his many puns; and if they were caught three times with their shirts untucked, they also might remember receiving a demerit or two.

During his 38-year career at Gilman, Mr. Clapp served in many capacities: teacher of ancient history, American history, and world geography; Middle School Dean of Students; Social Studies Department Chair; and Middle School Assistant Head. He was devoted to the School and to his students and is remembered for his kindness, strict-but-fair treatment of his students, and collaborative support of his colleagues, particularly the rookie teachers. Former faculty member Don Abrams described him as the “Dean of the Old Guard”—a no-nonsense teacher who “earned the respect and affection of his young charges with his breadth of knowledge, generous caring, and many puns.”

Mr. Clapp’s half-century affiliation with the School was an era of great change at the School. An early advocate for diversity, he was also a strong supporter of financial aid. He made annual gifts to the School for 30 consecutive years. Mr. Clapp and his wife Jeanne, a founding teacher at The Odyssey School, had no children and decided early on to support their respective institutions. Mr. Clapp made Gilman a beneficiary of two retirement plans and a percentage of his estate, leaving the School more than $900,000. Gilman’s Gift Acceptance Committee recognized his devotion by including the beloved teacher posthumously in the Medallion Society, which honors lifetime donors of $1 million or more.


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