Brian McCoy ('03)
The story of how Brian McCoy (CCDS Class of 2003) ended up living in France is certainly one he never expected!
He recently shared, “Although I really enjoyed our CCDS middle school trip to France with my classmates, there was really no interest in living there once I grew up. Honestly, I wanted to live in Northern Ireland, but that's another whole story!”
Brian's story begins with an instrument called a hurdy gurdy, a string instrument from the Middle Ages that produces sound by a hand-crank-turned rosined wheel rubbing against the strings. The wheel functions much like a violin bow, and single notes played on the instrument sound like those of a violin. Brian was exposed to a hurdy gurdy in the winter of 2008, while on winter break from college. His mother had a DVD of one of their favorite artists, Lorenna McKennitt. In her band, she had a hurdy gurdy player. At that moment, Brian did not know what it was, but six months later, while taking a world music class in college, he learned not only what a hurdy gurdy was, but was immediately hooked! He purchased his first one in 2009, and from that point forward, focused on learning how to play this unique instrument.
Wishing to further his hurdy gurdy skills and knowledge, the plan was to move to Northern Ireland, until he met a young lady named Armelle from France on Facebook. As their relationship grew, they finally decided to meet in person in France in 2016 and Brian never left! Little did he know that his first trip to France would not be his last!
Brian continues to hone his hurdy gurdy skills by playing an assortment of venues throughout the area and has even been featured on French television. He is becoming widely known as “The Hurdy Gurdy Man” not only in the city of Poitiers, France, but beyond. You can listen to Brian's music on YouTube where there are a variety of videos.
Brian and Armelle are excitedly awaiting the birth of their first child on May 22, 2023! Congratulations from your CCDS family and Bonne chance, mon ami!
Laura Liz Little ('88)
Laura moved to Los Angeles after completing a summer study course with College Advisor Holly Cole, in
which she traveled to Indianapolis to work on a Sundance Film (“Going All the Way”), while Holly wrote
her now published book, Costuming in Film. The movie starred many then unknown actors: Ben Affleck,
Rachel Weiss, Rose McGowan. Laura got to play as a featured background actress against Ben Affleck in
a scene, which was cut, rewritten, and reshot later (the story of everyone’s acting career, on the editing
She worked for Roger Corman’s Concord/New Horizons Studios as a set costumer and was the fastest
paid new employee for the company, which required two months of internship. Laura made it to payroll
after eight days straight, and five stripper costumes from scratch. She also draped Roger Corman’s
youngest daughter’s 8 th grade graduation dress.
It took three years before Laura finally qualified to join the union, after landing on an independent film
called “Red Letters”, that flipped. No longer did her father have to remind her that she could still go to
law school if it didn’t work out.
As a set costumer, Laura worked on projects such as “The Unit”, “Entourage”, “Thank You for Smoking”,
“My Name is Earl”, and “House”. She then upgraded to Key/Supervisor and began to run the department
on shows such as “Criminal Minds”, “SEAL Team”, “Grey’s Anatomy”, “Lucifer”, and “The Offer”.
As head of the Costume Department, most people outside the industry think she is a Costume Designer,
which is a very different role. The Supervisor breaks down scripts, builds budgets, hires and manages
crew, tracks continuity, sets up the department, pays vendors, clears clothing with legal, and
coordinates with other departments for coordination of colors/clothing needs and relays them to the
Currently, Laura is a Trustee of her local Union, a member of the Television Academy, out of work due to
WGA/SAG-AFTRA strike (in solidarity, but will return to “Grown-ish” to complete Season 6 when
resolved), mom to a 5th grader, and trains cirque trapeze/silks/handstands for fun.
John Meeks ('15)
John Meeks, a member of the Canton Country Day School class of 2015, recently graduated from the University of South Florida with both a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and a Bachelor of Arts in General Mathematics. His dedication and commitment to excellence was evident through numerous accolades, including his induction into the prestigious Phi Beta Kappa Society in his junior year, his achievement of a perfect 4.0 GPA across both degrees, and his graduation in the top 1% of a USF class of over 7,000. Further testament to John's prowess, he was handpicked for the Judy Genshaft Honors College based on his perfect 100th percentile ACT and SAT scores, was awarded the Global Citizens Award, and was named the sole Outstanding Graduate in Computer Science. Beyond the classroom, John expanded his horizons with international study programs and extensive personal global travels, embodying the spirit of a true global citizen. The echoes of Canton Country Day School's values and teachings are ever-present in both his personal and academic journeys.
Maggie Goff ('06)
“I have been running an incubator program for impact-driven start ups in the region. Sponsored by US Department of State, we brought 18 different companies together from 8 countries (Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, UAE, and Palestine) for 10 days of training and networking to grow and scale their businesses. I often found it much easier to communicate with the Francophone Africans in French!”