REED HOME Gryphon icon
reed magazine logoJune 2010

Eliot Circular Continued

64 Squares and Counting

Galen Pyle

Photo by Tom Humphrey

Math major Galen Pyle ’10 had scant interest in chess until he got to Reed. Then a chance game on the Great Lawn kindled an unexpected passion. Now he has won several tournaments and is ranked among the top three dozen players in Oregon. “Chess is a really intense intellectual experience,” he says. “It’s exciting. There’s a story in every game . . . . I always wanted to be an artist, but never had a medium until I found chess.”

Galen’s thesis is concerned with the question of whether the formal syntax of chess is isomorphic with the syntax of mathematics. (In a word, yes.) He also teaches chess in Portland schools and is captain of the Reed chess team. Here he demonstrates a position arising from the Sveshnikov Variation of the Sicilian Defense. (A free bumper sticker to any reader who can tell us how this one ends up.)

—Anna Mann

Reed Welcomes Two New Trustees

Konrad Alt

Konrad S. Alt ’81

Konrad S. Alt ’81 is a managing director in the San Francisco office of Promontory Financial Group, which specializes in regulatory and financial consulting services for financial institutions. He advises clients on compliance, risk management, governance, and regulatory communications.

Konrad previously served as chief public policy officer and executive vice president at Providian Financial Corporation, senior vice president at World Savings Bank, senior deputy comptroller for economic analysis and public affairs and chief of staff in the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and counsel to the Senate Banking Committee. He also practiced law at Dewey, Ballantine, Bushby, Palmer, and Wood. Konrad received his BA in political science from Reed, an MPP from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and a JD from Harvard Law School, where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review and an Olin Fellow in Law and Economics.

Konrad chairs Reed’s newly formed Alumni Development Committee and is a member of the Reed Campaign Committee—San Francisco Bay Area. He previously served as president of Reed’s alumni board, a member of the National Advisory Council, and class reunion gift chair. Konrad’s wife, Maureen Kennedy, is a real estate broker with Pacific Union International. Konrad and Maureen live in Piedmont, California, and they have three children. Their son Wyatt is a freshman at Reed.

Matthew Bergman

Matthew Bergman ’84

Matthew Bergman ’84 is the founder and a managing partner of the law firm Bergman Draper and Frockt, which represents individuals and families in complex cases involving personal harm. The firm has represented hundreds of asbestos victims in the last decade and helped negotiate billions of dollars in global settlements.

Matt is nationally known for his work on behalf of asbestos victims, and he has served on numerous creditors committees and trust advisory committees, testified before the U.S. Congress on asbestos legislative issues, and spoken at national and international seminars on asbestos litigation. Prior to founding Bergman Draper and Frockt, he worked as an associate at Heller Erhman White and McAuliffe, and as a law clerk in the U.S. Court of Appeals Tenth Circuit. Matt received his BA in sociology from Reed College and his JD from Lewis and Clark Law School. He has been active in state and national politics, serving as delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 2000, 2004, and 2008. Matt is a member of the Board of Visitors at Lewis and Clark Law School, where he previously served on the alumni board. He is chairman of Neural IQ, a high-tech startup marketing antihacking software to government agencies and private industry. Matt also serves as chairman and principal funder of the Maasai Childrens Initiative (, which provides school feeding, female literacy, and computer technology training to rural Maasai communities in southern Kenya. Matt lives in Vashon, Washington, and has two children. His father is Abraham Bergman ’54 and his uncle was the late Elihu (“Eli”) Bergman ’50.

—Anna Mann

Friends Rally for Andrew Linehan Scholarship

At the end of a long battle with cancer, Andy Linehan ’78 heard from friends and colleagues who wanted to honor him with a gift. Andy, already making estate plans with Reed, was moved by their overture and decided to create the Andrew Linehan Scholarship.

An astounding 98 individuals and 10 companies contributed to the fund. “The email spread like wildfire across the country,” said Brian Walsh, a coworker at energy company Iberdrola Renewables, who encouraged gifts to the scholarship.

Andy’s colleagues remember him as a straight shooter who lived and breathed the principles he espoused in his professional life. As a negotiator for wind turbine permits, he was an expert in avian and bat protection who could bring all parties to the table. He was able to bring developers, conservationists, and landowners together, assess all the motivations, ask the difficult questions, and take a creative approach to thorny issues that left all parties feeling respected.

“Everyone came away happy with the result, and liking Andy,” says Peter Mostow ’87, a Washington lawyer who worked with Andy on the negotiations surrounding the Stateline Wind Farm near Walla Walla, Washington, a project that helped shape both of their careers. “He was a classic product of the conference system, committed to open mediation and intellectual inquiry as opposed to party-line approaches.”

Sara Parsons, Andy’s protégé at Iberdrola Renewables, says that Andy’s openness and penchant for critical analysis led him to challenge his own industry to improve its environmental record. In one case, he brought the concerns of environmental groups back to his company and convinced them to test shutting down turbines on low-wind nights in an attempt to reduce danger to bats, something that had never been done previously.

The Andrew Linehan Scholarship will be awarded to a student with financial need, with preference to a student in the environmental studies program that will be launched this fall. To make a gift to the Linehan Scholarship, visit


reed magazine logoJune 2010