Altarcations: Martha Flach & Austin Wilkie

As noted philosopher Carrie Bradshaw once put it, the New York Times wedding announcements are "the straight woman's sports pages." Altarcations is all about scoring the game. Each week, we evaluate the latest newlyweds, based on an elaborate rating system, described below.

Spring wedding season has arrived, which means that things are beginning to seriously heat up on the ol' wedding pages. The Rothkopf-Steinbergs (Jill teaches kindergarten; Jonathan works with hedge funds) were tied with the Purohit- Abrahams (they met while undergrads at Harvard, both went on to get M.B.As from Harvard) with 13 points each, but it was the Flach-Wilkies who came out on top. Though both over 35, Austin's a partner at Holland & Knight, the couple were married by a retired state Supreme Court justice and Austin's great-great grandfather's business interests included, among other things, "diamonds in the Congo." Well, thanks to Sunday's Times cover story, we know all about those!

Martha Flach, Austin Wilkie: 14 points

  • Both over 35: -2
  • Martha has a MA in historic preservation from Columbia: +2
  • Officiated by a retired state Supreme Court justice: +2
  • Austin a partner at Holland & Knight: +3
  • Austin graduated from Harvard: +2
  • Austin has a law degree from UVA: +1
  • "Mr. Wilkie's great-great grandfather Thomas Fortune Ryan was a
    financier and philanthropist whose business interests included
    tobacco, New York City streetcars and subways and diamonds in the
    Congo." +4 6



    Jill Rothkopf, Jonathan Steinberg: 13 points

  • Jill's parents from Stamford, CT: +1
  • James' parents from New York: +1
  • Jill teaches kindergarten; James is a managing director at a research business for hedge funds and mutual funds: +2
  • Jill graduated cum laude from Upenn: +2
  • Jill has a MA from NYU: +1
  • James graduated magna cum laude from Princeton: +4
  • M.B.A. from Columbia: +2


    Tara Purohit, Riad Abrahams: 13 points

  • Tara and Riad both graduated from Harvard: +5
  • Both received M.B.A.s from Harvard: 6
  • Tara a consultant: +1
  • Riad developing an investment firm: +1


  • Guide to Alexis' Patented Rating System—once again updated with your brilliant suggestions!

    Investment banker: 2
    Both Investment bankers: 5
    Job involving the word "banker" OR "investment": +1
    Both have jobs involving the word "banker" OR "investment": +3
    Management Consultant: 1
    Both management consultants: 3
    Trader: 2
    Both traders: 5
    High-powered lawyer: 2
    Both high-powered lawyers: 5
    Teacher at a New York City or Connecticut private school: 2
    Parents from New York City or wealthy suburb in Connecticut: 1
    New York Times employee: 1
    State Department employee: 2
    Bride is an elementary school teacher: 1
    Works in media: 1
    Ivy league graduate: 1 *
    Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Oxford, Cambridge, Sorbonne: 2*
    Both Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Oxford, Cambridge, Sorbonne: 5*
    For each subsequent degree after a B.A.: 1
    Ivy league B.A. with graduate degree at low-ranking local
    college/university: -1
    If bride or groom attended/teach at any school with "Country Day" in
    the name: +2
    Coro fellow at NYU Law: +1
    Graduated Cum Laude: 1
    Graduated Magna Cum Laude: 2
    Couple met online: -1
    Graduated Summa Cum Laude: 3
    Woman is at ideal age for getting married (25): 1
    Man is at ideal age for getting married (27): 1
    For each member of couple over 35: -1
    Couple married by a Cantor: +1
    Couple met during or before their freshman year in college: +2
    Bride or groom goes by middle name: +1
    Mother a nursery school/kindergarten teacher or reading
    specialist/father is a wealthy professional= +3
    If the groom is Jewish and the bride Asian: +2
    If the groom is Asian and the bride is Jewish: -1
    The bride/bridegroom's first marriage ended in divorce: -2
    Descendant/related to somebody famous: +3
    Descendant of a founding father: +4
    Groom wearing gingham in picture: +1
    Parent is a trustee or board member of a company or organization: +1
    per company/org
    Parent is a member of the Bermuda parliament: +2
    Bride or Groom is a board member of a company or organization: +1 per
    company/org
    Bride "is keeping her name", "will continue to use her name professionally": -1
    If there is a Jr., II, III or IV in a name: +2
    If someone famous comes to the wedding and is mentioned: +2
    If wedding ceremony held at Bethesda by the Sea in Palm Beach, and/or
    reception under a tent at the bride's grandmother's house in P.B: +2
    Bride clearly quits her job after the wedding: +1
    Married by an Episcopal priest: +1
    Groom is 20-30 years older than bride: +2
    Bride and groom both from New Jersey: -2
    Partner in corporate law firm: +3
    Bridge teaches elementary school, groom in finance: +2


    *Apply to graduate school degrees in addition to B.A.s