“All graduates owe it to Princeton to help maintain the academic excellence that has distinguished our university for the past 250-plus years,” says Henry Barkhorn. “Volunteering for Princeton is something we can all do.” Currently a leadership gifts volunteer, he has served as class president, class treasurer, and critical few chair. He has also been a member of the special gifts committee, as well as a member of the Alumni Council’s Class Affairs Committee.
His undergraduate major was in the Woodrow Wilson School. He found its policy conferences “challenging and broadening,” because students worked as a group to tackle problems. “It was good preparation for the kind of collaborative work you do in business school―and in life,” he says. In addition to his public affairs curriculum, he remains grateful for literature courses during which he read Thomas Mann, Proust, Joyce, Dostoevsky―“and a course in modern architecture that really changed the way I see buildings.”
His extracurricular activities included club sailing on Lake Carnegie, but he devoted much of his time and energy to Princeton’s radio station, WPRB, where he was business manager and a rock ’n’ roll DJ. He has maintained his connection to the station―until recently he was a trustee of WPRB.
After Princeton he earned his MBA from Harvard, and enjoyed a long career in investment banking and investment management, most recently as chief financial officer of Overture Technologies, a software company based in Bethesda, Maryland. Now a private investor and investment adviser, he is primarily engaged in various charitable activities―“with Princeton high on the list.”
Barkhorn chairs the board of trustees of Helen Keller International, a global organization that aims to combat the causes and consequences of blindness and malnutrition around the world, working through local governmental and private sector groups. Keller trustees get involved not only in the board room but in the field: he has visited medical facilities in Tanzania, Cambodia, and Sierra Leone, where he was gratified to note, “wonderful advances in the treatment of river blindness.”
President of the board of the Brick Presbyterian Church in Manhattan, he is also on the advisory board of WFUV, Fordham University’s public radio station.
He and his wife Karin live in New York City. His father, the late Henry C. Barkhorn Jr., was a member of the Class of 1936; his daughter Eleanor graduated in 2006.