Barry, Bechtel, Bloom, Taylor and Vaughan to be inducted into VSC Hall of Fame

The Class of 2020 will include four former Hustler staffers.

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Vanderbilt’s student center. (Hustler Multimedia)

Immanual John Milton, Editor in Chief

CORRECTION: The article previously incorrectly stated that Kathleen Barry worked for the United Methodist media library, however, she worked for the United Methodist Communications News Service. In addition, the pictures of the 1991 Soviet coup détat attempt are no longer on display at the Russian Tea Room.

Kathleen Smith Barry, Mark Bechtel, John Irving Bloom, Patrick Taylor and Eugene Vaughan will be inducted into The Student Media at Vanderbilt Hall of Fame as a part of the Class of 2020, per a Dec. 9 Vanderbilt Student Communications press release.

The 2020 class will join the ranks of notable Hall of Famers such as retiring Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander, Fox Sports personality Skip Bayless, CNN’s Washington Bureau Chief Sam Feist and MSNBC host Willie Geist.

VSC established the Hall of Fame in 2009 to honor alumni who have made significant professional and personal achievements or lasting contributions to their field or society.

“Induction into the Hall of Fame is the highest honor Vanderbilt Student Communications can bestow on its former student journalists,” the VSC website reads.

Kathleen Smith Barry

Kathleen Smith Barry.

A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Kathleen “Kats” Smith Barry moved to Nashville when she was ten years old. Barry attended Rhodes College in Memphis for the first two years of her college career. After transferring to Vanderbilt as a junior, Barry spent her time on campus taking photographs for The Hustler, Versus and the Commodore Yearbook. She also worked at the Nashville Banner as its first woman photographer and intern during the summers of 1978 and 1979. Barry graduated in 1980 with a Bachelor of Arts in English.

In 1983, Barry joined The Tennessean as a photographer. She photographed Fidel Castro in Cuba, President Ronald Reagan in the Oval Office and Gov. Bill Clinton in Little Rock, among other projects. Barry also took pictures of the 1991 Soviet coup détat attempt in Moscow, which have been on display at the Russian Tea Room in New York City.

Over the last decade, Barry has worked for the United Methodist Communications News Service. Since working there, she has photographed bishops visiting the San Diego-Tijuana border fence and taught photography in Zambia.

Mark Bechtel

Mark Bechtel.

Hailing from Cleveland, Ohio, Mark Bechtel came to Vanderbilt in 1989 and joined The Hustler his first year on campus. Bechtel began by covering the rugby team for the sports section. Later, Bechtel began taking pictures for The Hustler, and his photo of the last-minute win against Ole-Miss was picked up by The Nashville Banner. Bechtel eventually served as editor for The Hustler’s former Perspectives section and Layout Designer for the literary and arts journal, The Vanderbilt Review.

Following graduation in 1993, Bechtel worked for a tax preparation firm and later for Vanderbilt athletics. He then moved to Sports Illustrated as a fact-checker.

Bechtel spent the next 25 years covering the NFL, MLB, golf, curling and NASCAR. He also served as Sports Illustrated’s NBA editor and the managing editor for Sports Illustrated Kids. Bechtel assisted in the development and launch of Sports Illustrated Kids’ Rookie Books series. In 2010, he wrote “He Crashed Me So I Crashed Him Back,” a story about the birth of modern stock-car racing.

Currently, Bechtel is SI’s deputy editor and lives in San Francisco with his wife and two children.

John Irving Bloom

John Irving Bloom.

From West Texas, John Irving Bloom began his journalism career at the age of 13, working as a sportswriter for The Arkansas Democrat. Bloom’s work helped him earn the Fred Russell-Grantland Rice Scholarship, bringing him to Vanderbilt. On campus, Bloom started writing for The Hustler his first year on campus, and he eventually served as both sports editor and managing editor. Bloom graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English in 1975. 

Post-graduation, Bloom worked as a satirist, investigative reporter, late-night movie host and actor. He has written articles for over 100 publications, appeared in several films and published a column syndicated by The New York Times. Bloom also is a Pulitzer Prize nominee and a three-time finalist for the National Magazine Award.

In addition to the articles, Bloom has published nine books including “Evidence of Love” in 1984 and “Eccentric Orbits: The Iridium Story” in 2016. Both books received accolades from national media outlets—Time Magazine and The Wall Street Journal, respectively.

As an actor, Bloom has made appearances in movies including “Casino,” “Face/Off” and “Great Balls of Fire.” He was also a special commentator for The Daily Show. Bloom has executive-produced over 20,000 hours of filmography throughout his career in the industry.

Eugene Vaughan

Headshot of Eugene Vaughn.

A native of Brownsville, Tennessee, Eugene Vaughan arrived at Vanderbilt on a Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) scholarship in 1951. Vaughan served as The Hustler’s sports editor his junior year, and graduated in 1955 with a Bachelor of Arts degree.

After graduating and spending three years in the Navy, Vaughan attended Harvard Business School and received his MBA in 1961. Vaughan then joined Putman Management Company in Boston as an investment analyst, where he stayed until founding Vaughan Nelson Investment Management in 1970. 

Later, Vaughan became the founding chairman and governor of the Association for Investment Management and Research, known today as the Chartered Financial Analysts (CFA) Institute, formed after a merger between the Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts and the Financial Analysts Federation in 1990.

In 2000, Vaughan stepped down from his position and created the Center for Houston’s Future, which hopes to encourage civic leadership and strategic planning in Houston. 

Additionally, Vaughan served as a member of the Vanderbilt University Board of Trust from 1972 until 2004. He now is an emeritus trustee.

Patrick Taylor

Headshot of Patrick Taylor.

Brought up in White House, Tennessee, Patrick Taylor arrived at Vanderbilt in 1994. While on campus, Taylor worked as the unofficial engineer for Vanderbilt Television (VTV) and hosted several WRVU shows. During his time at VTV, he set up a fiber optic network from Branscomb to the gym to broadcast games not carried by national networks, after obtaining permission from Vanderbilt athletics. Taylor graduated in 1998 with a Bachelor of Engineering in electrical engineering. He then obtained a Master of Science from Vanderbilt in 2003, and finally, he obtained the triple ‘Dore status in 2006, when he obtained his doctorate.

Taylor now serves as head of the electrical engineering group for the missile propulsion branch and the power technology lead for the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Aviation and Missile Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

Paige Clancy (B.S. 1998), chair of the Hall of Fame selection committee and editorial adviser at VSC, said she is always happy to hear how Vanderbilt alumni’s experience in student media has contributed to their success.

“The 2020 class of Hall of Fame inductees is incredibly distinguished and accomplished,” Clancy said in a message to The Hustler. “I hope the stories of their careers and accomplishments will inspire Vanderbilt students—not necessarily to follow in the Hall of Famers’ particular footsteps, but to be themselves and carve their own paths.” 

Clancy also serves as an advisor to The Hustler.