One-on-One with David W. Gorham


Linus Park, News and Managing Editor

David W. Gorham. The name itself establishes a sense of dedication and genuine love for our Casady community. For 52 years, Mr. Gorham has taught multiple generations of students in the study of the Latin language, various History courses, and also has served as Dean of Students for 18 years, succeeding to establish a sense of discipline and to further enhance the quality of life on campus.

From the rustic lifestyle on a Californian farm, Mr. Gorham spent his high school years at Taft School, a reputable boarding school in Connecticut, and subsequently graduated from the prestigious Brown University in 1964. After his graduation, with the contact from Dr. Woolsey, former Latin teacher/Advisor of Mr. Gorham in Taft, who was also the Head of Casady School at the time, Mr. Gorham acquired a job as a teacher of Latin courses at Casady.

Since then, Mr. Gorham has brought a dynamic teaching style to all of his classes, constantly motivating and challenging students to reach their full capacities for learning. Furthermore, not only do the students appreciate the charismatic and compelling qualities of Mr. Gorham, they cannot get enough of his humorous remarks and pleasant stories of his past.

Even through 3 years of his classes, many questions still remain as to who Mr. Gorham really is. Therefore, in order to disclose and uncover some unanswered questions, I decided to find out.

Linus Park: How do you think you were able to sustain 52 years of teaching and tolerate all those students you have come across?

Mr. Gorham: I think I really enjoy teaching. I have the God-given ability to cope with and communicate with these kids. Prior to this job, I never had any experience actually “teaching”–no degrees or classes related to what I have been doing.  Instead, I majored in Classical language.

Linus Park: When did you first study Latin and when did you really develop the passion for the language?

Mr. Gorham: I first studied Latin in the seventh grade and really got into it during sophomore and junior year of high school. The fact that I could not keep up with the Architectural math stuff in college also influenced me to study the course that I can decently do, which were Classics and history courses.

Linus Park: Now, if you could name one significant change in the school from the time you were once Dean of Students compared to today, what would it be?

Mr. Gorham: Punishments were much more serious back then. When I was Dean, if someone was to be caught sneaking off-campus, that student would immediately be suspended and sent home. However, that is not the case today. Much of the punishment is very light, mainly due to the concerns of parents that suspensions would show up on college resumes. Overall, the parents are really involved now in many of the students’ school life. Back then, the parents would drop their kids off at eight o’clock in the morning and pick them up at five thirty in the afternoon, and that was that. Now, parents call in to talk about students’ grades and other matters, due to the competitiveness of college admission. Nevertheless, the students have not changed. They’re all the same. You do the same thing they did thirty years ago.

Linus Park: Aside from school, what are some of your hobbies that you enjoy on your free time?

Mr. Gorham: Well, I enjoy collecting stamps and selling them, and mainly just watching soccer. From time to time, I’ll watch some from the English Premier League or occasionally from the Bundesliga. Although, I do think South American players are more talented and skilled in what they do.

Linus Park: We’ll get back to soccer in a little bit. How about that stamp collection though? You have built quite an extraordinary collection of stamps. What has led you to such peculiar interest? (If you wish to take a look into Mr. Gorham’s stamp collection refer to the link below.)

Mr. Gorham: My aunt gifted a couple of stamps when I was very little, and since then, I collected a few stamps here and there throughout my childhood. Then, I didn’t collect stamps until the 1990’s, and that’s when I collected stamps a little more fervently.

Linus Park: Once again, unbelievable. Anyhow, you have coached the Casady Soccer team for a very long time and found great success among those years. Can you describe your career as a head coach and manager for the Casady Soccer team?

Mr. Gorham: I have coached the Casady Soccer team for 26 years, won 4 SPC Championships, and shared another SPC Championship with one other coach. We often took the team to Europe to have friendlies, and most of the time they would totally school us. However, they were fun times, traveling with the team and also doing something that I enjoy.

Linus Park: As I recall, Gorham Field is actually named after you and your great coaching ability. It must be a great honor.

Mr. Gorham: It’s actually quite a burden.

Linus Park: Nevertheless, you have established an amazing legacy here at Casady School and you continue to do so.

The charming character and positive influence that Mr. Gorham has and the influences which he continues to have on our campus cannot be appreciated enough. There isn’t anyone who can dedicate his or her life solely for Casady School and the community in the same way as Mr. Gorham has continually done so. He is a fundamental asset to this school.