Student Spotlight: Smarika

Smarika, CRLS Class of 2018 recipient of the Rose & Victor Rifkin Family Scholarship, now enrolled at the College of the Holy Cross, told us: “I have been drawn to history since fourth... READ MORE

Student Spotlight: Jessica

Jessica, CRLS Class of 2018 recipient of the Friends of CRLS First Scholars Award Sponsored by Cambridge Trust, now enrolled at UMass Lowell, told us: “From my college education in the near future,... READ MORE

Student Spotlight:  Shaina


Shaina, CRLS Class of 2018 recipient of the Friends of CRLS First Scholars Award, now enrolled at Salem State University, told us: “One of my personal goals is to become a Neonatal Nurse... READ MORE

Student Spotlight: Max

Max, an alto saxophonist and CRLS Class of 2018 recipient of the “100 by 100” Cambridge Business Community Scholarship for the Arts, who is enrolled at the Berklee College of Music, told us:... READ MORE

Influential CRLS Educators Honored by the Class of 2018

Friends of CRLS Sponsors 12th Annual Faculty Distinction Awards

Photo, L-R:  Kevin Dua, Rachel Otty, Brett Cramp, and Tobe Korsgren Stromberg

For the 12th consecutive year, seniors nominated four educators who made the greatest impact upon their CRLS experience. Sponsored by Friends of CRLS, the Faculty Distinction Awards were presentedby Principal Damon Smith, Senior Class President Leonardo Escobar, Student Body President Sophie Harrington, and Elaine Schear, Executive Director of Friends of CRLS, to rousing cheers as each awardee took the stage at the June 7th commencement.

Congratulations — and thank you — to these terrific teachers:

Kevin Dua, a decorated teacher for almost a decade, was the first African-American to receive the Massachusetts History Teacher of the Year Award (in 2017) and the 2018 recipient of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Service Award. With a B.A. from the College of William and Mary and an M.Ed from Boston College, Mr. Dua’s background has helped students to better their identities in his psychology and history courses this year, which marked his first year at CRLS. Though his life goal is to become U.S. President in 2040, Mr. Dua cites his biggest honor thus far as serving as the faculty advisor for the Black Student Union this year. The anti-racism campaign in schools and trainings, call for more Black and Brown teachers in the district, and celebration of Blackness are positive highlights he attributes to those senior members.

Rachel Otty has taught history at CRLS since 2005.  She has a Bachelor’s Degree in history from Mount Holyoke College and a Master’s Degree through the Boston Teacher Residency program.  She currently teaches 9th grade World History and Modern World History, an elective class that focuses on foreign policy in Eastern Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.  She has written about teaching about Islam and religious literacy for Education Week and PBS and is passionate about teaching her students to challenge assumptions and complicate narratives about the regions and people they study.

Brett Cramp spent nearly a decade working as an actor in New York City before becoming a teacher. He holds degrees from the University of Cincinnati College – Conservatory of Music and from Emerson College. He is a proud member of the CRLS Visual & Performing Arts department who has taught drama classes as and directed musicals, plays and student-created original work. As a drama teacher, he believes in creating a safe and nurturing environment that allows for students to use theatre to speak honestly about the world around them and, as a result, broaden their understanding, deepen their empathy and break their own expectations of themselves. Over the past 15 years, the process of learning to teach (something that never stops) has been and continues to be the most compelling conversation he could ever hope to be in. He is deeply grateful for the opportunity to teach and learn from his students at CRLS.

Tobe Korsgren Stomberg grew up in Cambridge and attended the Pilot School here at CRLS. She studied Human Ecology at Connecticut College and then Forestry and Environmental Studies at Yale University. After spending time working as a forester in New York City and Connecticut, she returned to her Cantabrigian roots and started teaching biology here at CRLS. In her 20 years at CRLS she has taught biology, genetics, AP Environmental Science and most recently, a next generation farming class. She serves as the faculty advisor for the Environmental Action Club and has helped to bring the composting program to our school. Tobe is passionate about her students, her colleagues, and the science courses she teaches. Tobe strives to treat each student as a multifaceted person and supports their learning outside of the classroom. She is looking forward to working on achieving equity for all students and solving our toughest environmental problems.


A Very Big Night for Scholarships at CRLS

Upper Left:  Thomas — awardee of the Juliet Kayyem & David Barron Scholarship for Children of First Responders, who will study marine biology at the University of Rhode Island  — and family  

Upper Right:  Friends of CRLS scholarship sponsors Samuel Gebru and Dr. Mary Tavares Sutula with Elaine Schear, Friends of CRLS Executive Director 

Lower Left:  Wenderly — awardee of the Rose & Victor Rifkin Family Scholarship, the “It Takes a Village” Multi-Year Scholarship, and the Samuel Gebru Scholarship, who will study nursing at MassBay Community College — with her mother, Mercie 

Lower Right:  Diana — awardee of the “100 by 100” Cambridge Business Community STEAM Scholarship for Math, who will study math and computer science at Stanford University — with her mother, Nadia, and Neil Rosenburg, Friends of CRLS Scholarship Committee Chair and Treasurer

On the evening of Thursday, May 17, 2018, CRLS and Friends of CRLS co-hosted a rollicking, well-attended Scholarship Festival. The evening was kicked off by a Scholarship Night Reception to honor scholarship sponsors (families, businesses, corporations, and institutes of higher education) as well as this year’s student recipients, their family members, and community supporters. The sponsor reception, a partnership between CRLS and Friends of CRLS, was attended by nearly 130 guests, with catering by the CRLS Culinary Arts Program, comments by CRLS Principal Damon Smith and Elaine Schear, Executive Director of Friends of CRLS, and reflections about making the transition from CRLS to college by Kester Messan-Hilla, CRLS ’17 recipient of five scholarships, upon completing his freshman year at Williams College.

At the award ceremony, 180 separate scholarships were presented to 130 students, totaling $300,000, — of which Friends of CRLS presented 37 scholarships totaling $49,500 to 33 members of the CRLS Class of 2018 — an all-time high and increasingly critical means of support.

The evening wrapped up with socializing and refreshments in the Fitzgerald Theater lobby.

Congratulations to our awardees!  Thank you to our sponsors and event participants!

  • For more information about establishing a scholarship through Friends of CRLS, please email us at [email protected] or call us at 857-235-9290.
  • Get information about becoming a “100 by 100” Cambridge Business Community STEAM Scholarships sponsor HERE or contact us by email at [email protected] or phone at 857-235-9290.
  • Get information about contributing to one of our other scholarship funds HERE or contact us by email at [email protected] or phone at 857-235-9290.
  • To donate by check, please make your check payable to Friends of CRLS and mail it to FOCRLS, P.O. Box 391541, Cambridge MA 02139.
  • Friends of CRLS scholarship awardees, please get in touch with us by email at [email protected] or phone at 857-235-9290.

Donate to our Scholarship General Fund

Friends of CRLS  CRLS Staff

On May 8 during Teacher/Staff Appreciation Day (part of National Teacher Appreciation Week) Friends of CRLS, with the generous and delicious in-kind support of Toscanini’s, sponsored an ice cream social in the Falcon’s Nest. Scooping by administrators and deans was high caliber, attendance was brisk, and the cookies ‘n’ cream won in the “fastest to disappear” category!

We hope to make this an annual event!

Thank you, CRLS teachers and staff, for all you do!






Thank you to everyone who purchased raffle tickets!  Raffle ticket sales are over.

Thank you to our raffle donors (listed below), who contributed a total of over 40 prizes!

All raffle proceeds support opportunities for CRLS students, grads, and faculty through Friends of CRLS’s College Scholarships, Student Travel Fellowships, Faculty Innovation Grants, Faculty Distinction Awards, and Unsung Heroes Program.

Blank Line

Isaiah Robinson and Lorra Marseille, both CRLS seniors and recipients of FOCRLS Student Travel Fellowships, presented a slide show at the FOCRLS Bash on 3/29/18 about their February 2018 service learning trip to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. Photo by Jean Cummings of

Spring 2018 Bash a Smash!!

On Thursday, March 29, 2018, we threw Friends of CRLS’s biggest event yet, our 2018 Spring Bash.

Some highlights:

    • $65,000 (and counting!) in funds raised to support opportunities at CRLS
    • CRLS students celebrated through music, visual media, and applause
    • 200+ guests – parents, alumni, students, faculty, sponsors, donors, volunteers, Mayor Marc McGovern, City Manager Louis DePasquale, and more – enjoyed a wonderful party hosted and catered by Google in Kendall Square
    • Robin Young, award-winning journalist and radio host of WBUR’s Here & Now, made the evening flow as both emcee and auctioneer
    • Marjorie Decker, State Representative and CRLS alumna, spoke passionately about equity and diversity

Gigantic gratitude to Google and all of our event sponsors (below), donors, attendees, performers, presenters, and Bash Committee.

Special thanks to Jean Cummings of for the vibrant story and festive photos.

Stay tuned:  we’ll be posting more from the Bash soon.



Elmer, CRLS Class of 2016 recipient of the Friends of CRLS First Scholars Award, who is now attending Harvard University, as an alumni guest speaker at FOCRLS’s Special Reception for Scholarship Sponsors on CRLS Scholarship Night, May 18, 2017 (Photo by Bethany Versoy)
Ruksat, CRLS Class of 2017 recipient of the Rose & Victor Rifkin Family Scholarship, who is now attending Brandeis University
Miles, CRLS Class of 2017 recipient of the “100 by 100” Cambridge Business Community STEAM Scholarship for Mathematics and the Colonel & Mrs. Henry Bayard McCoy Memorial Scholarship, who is now attending Harvard University
Zoe, CRLS Class of 2017 recipient of the Elizabeth Vernon Scholarship for Volunteerism and Community Service, who is now attending MIT

Our 10th Year Annual Report is Here!

Winner of “Best in Annual Reports @ FOCRLS”
Good Read – Great Photos

We’re delighted to share our Limited Edition 10th Year Annual Report! CLICK HERE to view our Annual Report online. Highlights include reportage of our 10th Year Birthday Bash, quotations from and photos of our scholarship awardees, and details about how we raised over $200,000 this past fiscal year to support opportunities at CRLS.

Slideshow about FoCRLS

Friends of CRLS’s new slideshow, which features photos of many of our awardees, is a great overview of our programs, impact, outreach, and fundraising. We hope you will take a few moments to scroll through the .pdf of the Friends of CRLS slideshow here.

FOCRLS’ Newest Student Prize Announced!

We are excited to announce the newest student prize: The Calvin Hicks Memorial Award for the Study of Music. Please support this award generously in its inaugural year!

FOCRLS’ Newest Scholarship Announced!

We are excited to announce the newest student scholarship: The Rose and Victor Rifkin Family Scholarship. Please support this scholarship to help the next generation reach the American dream.

InvestCRLS Campaign Announced!

InvestCRLS is a new community-opportunity campaign to close in on the opportunity and achievement gaps at CRLS and unleash the diverse and extraordinary talents of our 1800+ students. It includes a new major donor ($1,000+) campaign and an exciting “100 x 100” business initiative. … Continue Reading

Our Mission

The mission of the Friends of Cambridge Rindge and Latin School is to develop, support, and enrich the academic and social development programs at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School and to support the alumni of CRLS and its predecessor schools. In so doing, FOCRLS promotes achievement and a greater community investment in the future of CRLS, its current students, and its graduates. Friends of CRLS is a tax-deductible 501(c)(3) non-profit association founded by two CRLS parents in 2006.

Donate to ​the FOCRLS General Fund

Donate to our Scholarship General Fund


Donate to 100 by 100 Cambridge Business Community Scholarships

Faculty Innovation Grants recipient Kathleen FitzGerald’s “Veterans History Project,”
Yordanos, CRLS Class of 2017 recipient of the “100 by 100” Cambridge Business Community STEAM Scholarship for Engineering, who is now enrolled at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, with her mother and brother on CRLS Scholarship Night.

5% Day and $17,840 for FoCRLS from Whole Foods

Student volunteers at 5% Day at Whole Foods, River Street

Student volunteers at 5% Day at Whole Foods, River Street.

April 6, 2017 was 5% Day for Friends of CRLS at Whole Foods Market stores, a four-location event that earned our organization a donation total of $17,840! All proceeds benefit the students, grads, and faculty of Cambridge Rindge and Latin School. Student and adult volunteers attended FoCRLS tables at all four participating stores — Prospect StreetRiver Street, and Fresh Pond in Cambridge as well as Beacon Street in Somerville — representing CRLS and FoCRLS and reminding shoppers that 5% of their entire purchase helps bring opportunities to Cambridge’s only public high school. On May 26, there was an official presentation at the Fresh Pond store with a giant check bearing the donation amount. FoCRLS Executive Director Elaine Schear says that the Whole Foods contribution is “the kind of generous corporate investment in our whole student community that will have a broad impact on their learning and aspirations. Students and parents came out in force to be a presence in the stores throughout the day on April 6th.They understand the significance.” Thank you to Cambridge and Somerville Whole Foods Marketing & Community Liaison Matthew Keller, the managers and team members of the four stores, our student and adult volunteers, and everyone who shopped that day!

Help us provide inspiration and opportunities for Cambridge high school students.