BIO Index

Lida Cruickshank


In the fall, after graduation, I went to a small college (350 girls) in Bristol, VA. While in school I learned how to play bridge, sneak out of the dorm and drink beer. Needless-to-say my academics suffered and after 2 years at a two-year school I went to New York City to live with my father and attend secretarial school in the big city. While in school I spent a few weekends in New Jersey visiting my college roommate. I met my future husband John (a Rutgers Engineering student), in a bar across the state line in NY where all the college students went (NY State's drinking age was 18.) I asked him for a light and he told me I looked like Jackie Kennedy and that was it! BTW, neither of us was wearing our glasses!

After finishing secretarial school I went to work for Goldman, Sachs & Co for a couple of years until John and I were married in 1967. The army sent us to Nuremberg, Germany where we lived for two years (see, that learning how to drink beer came in handy!). My father said he didn't mind paying taxes since it was paying for our two-year "honeymoon" in Germany! We did a good deal of traveling in Europe including England, France, Switzerland, Austria, Italy (our favorite), and of course Germany (Octoberfest,) but eventually returned to the US where John went to Columbia Graduate School of Business to get his MBA and I stayed home with our new son, Rob.

Two years later we had another child, Lisa. John worked for Price Waterhouse and then William Mercer & Co when we decided to pack up, change lifestyles, and move to Arizona where we have been ever since. It's been 31 years since we moved and have never regretted it. I started playing tennis 5 days a week and John began teaching accounting and statistics at ASU and then at Mesa Community College.

In the mid 80's I started up a small clown business (Sailor Circus experience came in handy. It was fun work and I enjoyed making people laugh. In the late 80's I began working for the DuPont Company as Territory Manager of their Fibers Division. During that time John and I started biking and I recruited several of my clients to join us for the Best Dam Bike Ride for MS (150 miles.) Our group did this for 3 years, raising over $10,000 for the cause. After 5 years I switched ships and worked for America West Airlines (now US Airways) in their frequent flyer department --- loved all the travel benefits and made good use of them. We went on several bike tours in Oregon, Vancouver Island and Calgary. My last job was working for a small language school teaching ESL and heading up their human resources department.

Since John had his summers free we were able to travel to, China, Australia, Germany, Italy (11 times), Mexico and much of the US including Alaska and Hawaii. We do a lot of camping in our pop-up camper, and spend up to 9 weeks at a time living together in a 12 by 7 foot "summer cottage" (see photo). We actually do have fun together!

Our son, Rob, is a high school math teacher and recipient of the National Woodie Flowers Award for mentoring students for FIRST Robotics (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology.) Our daughter, Lisa, is Director of Vascular and Arterial Lines at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York City. We're both very proud parents. Although I gave up tennis years ago I have taken up quilting instead, I still play bridge and also enjoy working out and going to yoga. Every year I spend the month of May in Sarasota at my sister's beach condo at Gulf and Bay on Siesta Key. This year is no different, and I'll be arriving in Sarasota April 28 and I'm looking forward to seeing you all at the reunion. Stay safe and be happy.

Lida Cruickshank Mainieri