Nixon/Carter Commons, N1120

This space is officially named in gratitude of the generosity of Laura (Carter) Sander ’84.


A native Iowan, Laura (Carter) Sander was ambivalent about her Grinnell experience for many years after graduation. Family ties and generous financial aid had kept her in Iowa at a time she felt she should be breaking away from the familiar and comfortable. After 25 years, she came to understand that her time at Grinnell was foundational to the rest of her life - the stable base from which she has explored new geographies and cultures, journeyed through various sectors in her professional life, and created and strengthened her family and friend circles.

Laura is married to Tom Sander and has two children, Caleb (1999) and Anna (2001). They live in Somerville, MA. She currently serves as the Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration/Treasurer at Suffolk University in Boston, MA.

The Grinnell experience is about working hard and paying hard. A key component to a successful balance of both is humor. Laura's best friend at Grinnell was Paula Nixon '84, Laura states, 'certainly one of the funniest and most clever alumni of the college." In the spring of their junior year, Nixon and Carter conducted a write-in campaign for SGA president and vice-president. The campaign consisted of hanging up a few posters around ARH the night before the election with the slogan "Nixon/Carter - Make the Same Mistake Your Parents Did" (photo of poster attached). The insurgent effort gathered sufficient votes to force a run off and produce a great chuckle across campus.