Spring 2020 class notes
Thank you to all who sent in submissions for the Class Notes section. Due to space limitations, we ask that entries be limited to 100 words. To submit Class Notes items, please use the form at owu.edu/classnotes. Deadline for the Fall 2020 issue is May 19.
Dorothy Judd Curtis Brown ’49 and her husband of 60 years, Bill Brown ’48, traveled frequently across the U.S. for his role as research director and president of the Council of State Chambers of Commerce in Washington, D.C. They had two daughters, leading Dorothy to become involved with the Girl Scouts for 50 years as troop member, leader, camp director, and more. She taught microbiology on two college campuses and was a tour leader on the environmental importance of the wetlands in Harpers Ferry National Park. In Estero, Fla., she was a boardwalk tour guide for 23 years at Six Mile Cypress Slough and coauthored “Seasons of the Slew.” Of their daughters, Darmae is an accomplished organist and library cataloguer, while the late Ann Brown Nutt ’76 was the first director of the Lighthouse Child Care Development Center in West Virginia.
Paul Ross ’50 and his wife of 32 years, Susanne, are living at Pacific Regent, a high-rise senior community of about 100 residents, in Bellevue, Wash. While she paints and creates art, Paul does scientific writing, and both continue their manyyear attendance at Seattle Symphony concerts, avoid the long waiting lines of air travel, and enjoy day trips into the North Cascades mountains. They celebrate their first great grandchild being born in September and their good health.
Ezra Vogel ’50 was honored by China Institute for contributions to enhancing China-U.S. relations. Ezra received the annual Blue Cloud Award’s special Lifetime Achievement Award for exceptional achievements in contributing to a friendship and understanding between the two countries. Ezra emphasized the importance of a good, informed international relationship, as well as China Institute’s work in “making efforts to hear real Chinese voices.”
Don Denton ’53 organized a round of golf in Westerville, Ohio, to commemorate Payne Stewart, a victor of two U.S. Opens and a PGA Championship. While Don had never met the late Stewart, both he and the professional golfer were members of Phi Gamma Delta, albeit at different universities. On the 20th anniversary of Stewart’s death, Oct. 25, Don and six other Phi Gamma Delta brothers dressed in plus-fours, baggy trousers that extend four inches below the knee. “I had thought for a long time, it would just be fun to dress up like Payne Stewart and go play some golf,” Don quipped to the Columbus Dispatch.
Maribeth Amrhein Graham ’55 was recognized with the Women of Influence award by the YWCA Dayton. As one of only seven women selected from over 130, she was honored as a visionary leader who has made a difference in the Dayton community while remaining dedicated to the YMCA goal of empowering women and including all. Maribeth is credited for helping save many of Dayton’s most revered landmarks, including the Victory Theatre and the Dayton Arcade. She has served as a member of the Junior League of Dayton and the West Carrollton School Board, life trustee on OWU’s Board of Trustees, and Founding Trustee of Antioch University Midwest, and her tireless community involvement was a central point of her selection. “Maribeth is the living version of the Margaret Mead quote: ’Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has,’” said her nominator.
Jack Hahn ’55 continues to live in his Albuquerque, N.M., home in the Northeast Heights. His wife, Jude, recently retired from the U.S. Department of Energy and now has time to enjoy true home activities. Jack belongs to a small group of “Ancient Aviators,” and the two still operate a large-scale “Sulphur Spring and Alum Creek” garden railroad through their backyard. Summertime finds them in their new flower garden, which is visited by a variety of birds and wild creatures.
Bill Myers ’55 continues to live in Glen Ellyn, Ill. Long retired from teaching, he still participates in activities related to architecture and theater in the Chicago area. For the warmer part of the year, he leads boat tours on the Chicago River.
Larry Spees ’57 found his calling a few years after graduation. He returned to college for teaching certification, earned a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Stout, began teaching at the University of Rio Grande, and was awarded a fellowship at West Virginia University, where he earned a doctorate. Larry retired after 29 years at Rio Grande. He and his wife have traveled Europe and now winter in Naples, Fla., leaving their home at the edge of Westerville, Ohio. After being on national boards of Alpha Sigma Phi fraternity, he still checks in on the OWU chapter.
Dick Hottel ’58 and Margie Keller Hottel ’60 have four children, eight grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. Margie has worked in a variety of fields, from organizing and teaching their church’s nursery school program to teaching in the U.S. Air Force high school in Germany, where Dick was deployed. Margie has been an elementary PTA officer, church deacon and session, pastor search committee member, and part of the national capital presbytery study group. She is a member of Delta Delta Delta sorority. Dick was employed by the U.S. Air Force for five years and by Harvey B. Hottel Inc. as chairman of the board, retiring in 2018. He also has served as a church officer, including being deacon, chairman of several fundraising campaigns, and property manager.
Jan Stillinger Cross ’60 left OWU with skills and attitudes that served her well, especially in her professional work ethic. This ethic carried her just short of her 80th birthday in a career as a university professor working with hundreds of high school student teachers. She lives with her husband, Criss, in Davis, Calif., and tries to model for their two sons and five adolescent grandchildren the hope they need for a changing world.
Vick French ’60 and Patricia Ross French ’60 live in Chevy Chase, Md. Their two children and two grandchildren live nearby. Patricia earned a Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Maryland, writing her dissertation on poet Philip Larkin. She taught undergraduates in English literature at both the University of Maryland and Georgetown University, ran literary seminars at the women’s prison in Jessup, Md., and served as first reader and chairman of the building and grounds committee of the Christian Science Church of Chevy Chase. For years she has been head librarian of the Christian Science Reading Room in Chevy Chase. After OWU, Vick received an M.A. in English from Cornell University, served as editor at the Brookings Institution, legislative assistant to Sen. Fred Harris (DOK), executive director of the Democratic National Committee, presidential campaign chief in Pennsylvania for Sen. George McGovern (D-SD), and chief of staff to Sen. Howard Metzenbaum (D-OH). Verrick also was executive vice president of the National Retail Merchants Association, president of French & Company, a government relations firm, and cofounder of the King’s Contrivance Discussion Group, composed of OWU graduates, from 1958 to 1975.
Virginia “Ginny” Van Meter Herrick ’60 lost her husband of 56 years in 2018. In 2019 her first grandchild was born. She is active in her church and involved in coordinating a natural food buying club, practicing tai chi, working out at the gym, hiking, and supporting a Mexican journalist seeking asylum.
Gerald Kerwin ’60 is retired as vice president-general manager of WQHS-TV in Cleveland. He and his wife, Kay, recently celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary and enjoy their time with family and friends in Avon Lake, Ohio. He notes how hard it is to believe it has been 64 years since everyone came to Delaware, and he holds many fond memories of classmates and teachers.
Roger Lockwood ’60 is living with his wife, Sheila, in Norwood, Mass. He has a blended family of six married children who have produced 13 grandchildren. Roger is happily working for his son David as franchisee of Taco Bell. He serves on the boards of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute of Boston and League School for autistic children, where he is chairman. He enjoys golf, but not every round.
Jane Polley Riggin ’60 has filled her days with art in Sarasota, Fla., as she attends the opera and serves on the board of directors for the artist series concerts. She fondly remembers how full of happiness and joy she and classmates were at OWU, treasuring those feelings despite the loss of her husband of 47 years. Jane is grateful for those memories and the skills learned in the classroom and from the fantastic people in her life while attending OWU. She is a member of Alpha Chi Omega.
Martha Hall ’63 has had poems appear in numerous national journals, such as Bellowing Ark, Las Cruces, Old Red Kimono, Tale Spinners, and more. She won the 2005 John and Miriam Morris Chapbook contest for her collection Abandoned Gardens and was a semifinalist in the 2007 Concrete Wolf Chapbook contest and the 2010 Kathryn A. Morton Prize in Poetry. Martha has published more than 10 books, one of which was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2011. She was honored by the New Hampshire Poet Laureate to be one of the state’s featured poets. Martha has been a member of the Manchester, New Hampshire, Poets Unbound group, the Academy of American Poets, the Poetry Society of New Hampshire, and the Monadnock Writers’ Group. She and her identical twin sister, Deb, were Conover models in New York City. After graduating from OWU, she attended Columbia University and has been a realtor with various real estate firms over the decades. Martha’s books may be purchased through Barnes & Noble and through various publishers and bookstores.
Sherry Smith Bell ’63 was elected to the Exhibitions Committee of the San Juan Islands Museum of Art. This museum, located in the San Juan Islands of northwest Washington, an area noted for its scenic beauty and concentration of artists, is committed to promoting the arts of the Pacific Northwest and Southwest British Columbia. With rotating exhibitions through three galleries, the museum hosts approximately eight to 10 exhibitions a year, as well as a lecture series, Art as a Voice. Sherry also serves as vice president for PADs for Parkison’s, a dog training facility for the detection of Parkinson’s disease. The nonprofit program is staffed by volunteers and a director of canine detection. Sherry’s dog, Jaden, an Australian Shepherd, joined the program as a detection dog sniffing out disease. Pictured: Sherry in her printmaking studio, Blue Sky Press.
Pete Lee ’65 and his wife, Joette, will celebrate their 50th anniversary this year and continue to enjoy busy lives in Arroyo Grande, Calif. Pete is still involved with youth lacrosse, but he retired from competitive tournament lacrosse in November. He still volunteers as the administrative assistant to the head coach of a local girls’ high school soccer team (their son is the varsity head coach). He looks forward to the SAE chapter reunion in October 2020.
Howard Prestwich ’65 is retired from the practice of law. Howard and his wife, Linda, live in Freeport, Ill., but winter in Palm Springs, Calif., to be closer to their daughter. He wishes all his classmates good health and happiness in the years to come and hopes to see many at the reunion.
Timmen Cermak ’67 releases his book on the science of marijuana, From Bud to Brain: A Psychiatrist’s View of Marijuana, through Cambridge University Press, this spring. He has practiced addiction medicine for 40 years and was the president of the California Society of Addiction Medicine. Timmen also chaired the Youth Work Group of California’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Marijuana and currently serves on two state advisory committees focused on cannabis regulation and use of cannabis tax revenue for youth education, prevention, early intervention, and treatment of substance abuse.
Charles “Chuck” Bauer ’69 had his artistic work exhibited in the gallery in the offices of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters in Madison, Wis. From late October to December, the exhibit showcased many paintings of Madison. Bauer says he is drawn to natural and domestic themes in his subjects, but he employs a nostalgic and tranquil approach. He majored in fine arts while at OWU.
The Rev. Catherine Savage Adler ’70 lives in Portland, Ore., and has served multiple United Church of Christ (UCC) churches as pastor. She also saw clients as a licensed clinical social worker within school systems and private practice before retiring. She has three children, Ben, Sarah, and David, and four grandchildren. Operation Crossroads Africa led her to raise funds for Somalia and Ethiopia in the 1980s and ’90s. As a member of the UCC Palestine Israel Network, Catherine works for Palestinian human rights and how those rights intersect with other human rights movements.
Philip Amrein ’70 attended medical school at Johns Hopkins and earned a fellowship in hematology-oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) after OWU. With his wife, Karen, he lives in Belmont, Mass., and their children, Stephen, Leslie, and Kate, have led interesting lives. As an attending physician doing clinical research in the leukemia disease center at MGH, he has been fortunate to work with productive people and has seen some of the new drugs improve response and survival for patients.
Jan Baran ’70 is a senior partner in the Washington, D.C., law firm Wiley Rein LLP, where he is the founder and past chair of the firm’s Election Law and Government Ethics group. In his 45 years as a lawyer, Jan helped individuals, politicians, political parties, nonprofits, and business organizations comply with laws that regulate political activity and lobbying. In addition to arguing constitutional cases before the Supreme Court of the United States, Jan served as a member of federal and Virginia government commissions and was the U.S. ambassador to an international telecommunications assembly. He and his wife, Kathryn, live in The Plains, Va., and have four children and five grandchildren, all in the D.C. area.
David Bernard ’70 retired five years ago and sold his practice after 40 years working as a CPA. He and his wife, Linda, spend time in Boca Grande, Fla., during the winter, generally taking one or two trips each year, and devoting the rest of their year to Gloucester, Mass., where he enjoys golf and fishing. Their three children have given them eight grandchildren, something he says they are lucky to have.
Richard Bourquard ’70 earned his M.S. in geophysics and worked for Texaco, becoming manager of advanced exploration programming. He later founded an investment management company. He lives in Denver, Colo., and works as CFO of a privately held startup. Rich was also a snowboarding instructor for 10 years at Winter Park. Off-time, he snowboards, composes music (Richsmusic. com), and volunteers teaching racquetball, teaching Java programming at a high school, and being a Big Brother in Big Brothers Big Sisters. With his wife and new Gordon Setter puppy, he enjoys traveling and visiting their three children and three grandchildren.
Elizabeth Blackwood Bowerman ’70 spent 20 years in the U.S. Navy, earned a master’s in financial management, started both a bookkeeping service and a condominium management business after retiring, and then “went wild and took a job on a cruise ship in Hawaii!” She is now happily retired near San Antonio and very active in land conservation efforts in the beautiful Texas hill country, serving as the president of the Comal County Conservation Alliance. Her husband, Rick, is the bass player in a local band of other “old guys” and keeps their life full of music.
Chris Kreps Buchert ’70 and Tom Buchert ’68 celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary Dec. 27. They were married over Christmas vacation because they knew Tom would be home on leave. Their life has been a journey. Chris taught for many years in Middletown, Ohio, where they lived. Their three daughters, Julie, Katie, and Jill, along with their sons-in-law and grandchildren, have brought them much joy. Tom and Chris like to travel and have visited all 50 states. Chris has traveled to all seven continents.
John Egan ’70 has lived a life filled with happiness since graduation and is grateful for his many blessings. He is a partner in a small consulting firm with no desire to retire. However, he is creating more time to focus on other interests, such as travel, walking his Golden Retriever in the nearby woods, and finishing a book 10 years in development. John has been married for 40 years and has two married boys and four grandchildren. While he has lived in Hunt Valley, Md., for 38 years, he still considers Ohio his home and cheers for the Tribe.
Susan Flaata ’70 says every day is an adventure. After OWU, she married Wendell and earned her master’s degree from the University of Michigan. They have three married children, Amanda Flaata ’99, Ben, and Rachel, as well as one grandson. For 25 years, Susan taught fifth through eighth grade in Sylvania, Ohio. She has lived in Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, and Arizona, with extensive domestic and international travel. Susan now lives a new life in Iowa as a caregiver for her husband with Alzheimer’s disease. She appreciates her wonderful family, friends, life, and OWU education.
Sandy Seel Gallagher ’70 feels fortunate to have attended OWU, not just for the excellent education, but also for wonderful roommates, lifelong friendships, and meeting the love of her life, Rick Gallagher ’69. They have been married for 46 years and have two children. After graduation, Sandy taught elementary school before “retiring” to raise their children. She began to teach literacy courses at the local community college, eventually teaching education courses as an adjunct for Ashland University. She later became the undergraduate director at Ashland’s Elyria Program Center. After 22 years, she retired in July 2017, now visiting her first granddaughter in Orlando, Fla., as often as possible.
Linda Odell Granger ’70, originally of Mentor, Ohio, retired from a career of nearly 40 years with the city of Virginia Beach, where she managed the city’s financial systems and process improvement projects. She earned her MBA from Old Dominion University and later was inducted into the City Employee Hall of Fame. She and her husband, Doug, are enjoying retirement through travel and boating on the Chesapeake Bay. They have two daughters and two young granddaughters and will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary in October. They continue to live in Virginia Beach, Va.
Cynthia Dimon Hendrick ’70 grew up by the Atlantic Ocean in Ocean City, N.J., and retired by the Pacific. Her journalism degree initially led her to newspaper writing and editing jobs, then to similar positions in the medical and education fields. She married, divorced, made good friends, and learned valuable life lessons in Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Ohio (her children grew up in Shaker Heights, Ohio), North Carolina, and Tennessee. Now that she is retired, she enjoys San Diego’s myriad of cultures, beautiful scenery, and plentiful learning opportunities. She also has time to volunteer, quilt, and garden year-round, not missing the snow.
Julie Hymen ’70 took part in the fall 1969 Arts Program in New York. Her first job was with Merce Cunningham Dance Company, and her claim to fame was as assistant company manager for the world premiere of Einstein on the Beach, European tour of 1976. Julie held positions as bookkeeper/finance manager for arts organizations, volunteer leader for American Youth Hostels’ bicycling and skiing trips, and key manager for Five Boro Bike Tour. She is a member of Park Avenue United Methodist Church. She never married or had children, but had a few boyfriends, including the grandson of a famous writer. She is possibly relocating to her “hometown” of Albany, N.Y.
Sara Michael Josey ’70 married Bill Josey in 1975 and moved to London for five years. The two met singing in choir and still sing 45 years later, now with the National Philharmonic Chorale, its chamber choir, and the choir at St. John’s Lafayette Square. Sara and Bill enjoy traveling with the choir, venturing to Vienna, Iceland, and Italy, and on their own to Portugal, Lithuania, and Tanzania. They have four children, including Austin Josey ’02, and nine grandchildren. Sara is a retired high school choral, piano, music theory, and fine arts resource teacher and now stays busy as an education assistant for the National Philharmonic and a babysitter.
Sally “Sarah” Constantin Kittredge ’70 returned to Rochester, N.Y., where she and her husband of 48 years, George, raised their two sons. Being in Rochester allows them to make their family cottage in the Thousand Islands a priority. Delta Gamma alumnae became a part of Sarah’s life, introducing her to a wonderful group of women. She has enjoyed working for several nonprofits, both in management and fundraising, over the years. Not quite ready to fully retire, she works seasonally for United Way. They are blessed with a terrific family, including four grandchildren in San Francisco and Boston. They enjoy traveling there and to other exotic locations.
Gerry Lynn ’70 mourns the passing of Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity brothers Greg Krone and Glenn Rodman ’70. He began his career with a try at teaching before deciding to earn a master’s degree in accounting from the University of Hartford. He retired after 27 years working for the state of Connecticut as an internal auditor. Gerry has been married for 31 years to Elizabeth Barrett, and they have no children. For the past 30 years, he has been interested in scuba diving, even diving in the Caribbean, Hawaii, Micronesia, and Bali. His biggest interest now is playing with a 1964 Buick Riviera.
Steve McKeever ’70 and Liz Cunningham McKeever ’70 will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary in August. They raised their two children in Chatham, N.J., and Plano, Texas, and now split their time between Vero Beach, Fla., and Colorado Springs, Colo. Steve retired from JCPenney 12 years ago after 38 years with the company. Their three children are happily married and have given Liz and Steve seven grandchildren. Their hobbies include golf, pickleball, bridge, and world traveling, leading a good life.
Jill Haddock McNaughton ’70 earned her M.A. in guidance and counseling at Ohio State University and continued to spend her career in education, from working at Druid Hills High School in Atlanta to Grandview Heights High School in Columbus, Ohio. Jill retired in 2012 and began part-time work at OSU to review student applications. She and her husband, Brian, welcomed their first granddaughter in 2018 and are now looking forward to a little traveling.
John Morris ’70 has lived in St. Louis, Mo., since 1982. A neurologist, he serves as director and principal investigator of the Knight Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at Washington University School of Medicine. He and his wife, Lucy, a retired radiologist, have been married for 41 years and have three children: Carrie, a physician; Ted, an attorney; and Mary, a social worker; and two grandsons. John’s ties to OWU have been maintained by the matriculation of nieces and a nephew, by periodic returns of the 1969–70 Bashford Hall residence counselors, and by the recent campus installation of the inaugural Morris Family Professorship in the Natural Sciences.
Janet Stephan Shapiro ’70 of Longboat Key, Fla., retired from teaching in 2014. She volunteers in community activities, is the administrative secretary and youth chairman of the Rotary Club of Longboat Key, and serves as president of the board at her church’s early care center. Walking, swimming, and reading are some of her favorite hobbies. She and her husband are members of the Ringling Museum of Art and attend gallery walks. The two have traveled throughout the U.S. and, since her retirement, have explored one region of Europe each summer.
Thomas Truesdell ’70 spent 29 years as a sales manager for Kaiser Aluminum, retiring in 2014. Most of those years were in Granville, Ohio, but he also spent four years in Macon, Ga., and two in Evergreen, Colo. Ann Stafford Truesdell ’69 did volunteer work for Kappa Kappa Gamma for many years and ultimately became the executive director for the KKG Foundation, retiring in 2013. They moved to Arcata, Calif., in 2015 to be closer to their two grandchildren, noting the change from conservative Ohio to liberal California, but knowing it was the best move of their lives. They celebrated their 49th wedding anniversary on Dec. 27.
Sharon Anderholm Wiener ’70 still mourns the recent loss to cancer of her husband, Howard “Kerry” Wiener ’70, but is enjoying retirement from a 34-year career with the Foreign Service and is taking advantage of Washington, D.C.’s many cultural treasures. She frequently visits their son and granddaughters in Berkeley, Calif., as well as their daughter and grandson (named after his late grandfather) in Brooklyn, N.Y. Sharon volunteers with the local “village” organization, committed to helping senior neighbors age in place. She spends a day each week tutoring at an elementary school in one of the most deprived neighborhoods in the nation’s capital.
Jane Sarno ’71 was inducted into the Otter Valley Hall of Fame in Vermont on Sept. 28. Selected for her exemplary scholarship, citizenship, and character, Jane taught American Studies at Otter Valley for 27 years, eventually becoming curriculum director before retiring in 2009.
Richard Sesler ’71 was selected as Belk’s Project Hometown Hero for his founding of Camp Blue Skies, a camp program for adults with developmental disabilities. He was awarded this recognition during college football’s Belk Bowl at Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium on Dec. 31.
On December 29, a group of OWU alumni from greater Baltimore and D.C., Arizona, Lancaster, Pa., and other areas gathered for good cheer and camaraderie at the Valley Inn in Lutherville-Timonium, Md. There to toast one another, their alma mater, and lasting friendships were, from left, (front row) Cynthia Richards Cunningham ’75, Annie Griffith Seiler ’75, Jim Ries ’78; (second row) Ellen Simpson ’77, Lisa Chapin Hoffberger ’79, Rob Richards ’77, Peter Hoffberger ’78, Sally Ries Erlanger ’83; (back row) Steve Cunningham ’75, Rich Seiler ’72, Gordon Witkin ’77, and Niels Holch ’78.
William “Ted” Bolton ’74 is in his eighth year teaching digital marketing at the University of Miami Herbert Business School. This career follows him retiring from his Philadelphia-based companies, Bolton Research Corporation and Liberty Broadcasting. Ted (in center wearing green) currently resides in Coconut Grove, Fla. with his wife, Nancy Anderson Bolton, the vice president of gA (Grupo Assa), a global technology company. Pictured: Ted with his fall 2019 Fundamentals of Digital Marketing class. Ted teaches students all aspects of digital marketing strategy and analytics and allows them to create content for #UDigital, a Facebook page devoted to the topics discussed in class.
Sharlene Carter ’74 was named a poet laureate by Poetry and Praise Ministries. She received a note from President Barack Obama about her poem “American Ends in I Can,” and former OWU education faculty Dury Sudduth delivered two poems she wrote about Nelson Mandela to the Nelson Mandela House Museum in South Africa. At right, Sudduth delivers Sharlene’s poems to the museum. Sharlene also received a U.S. Congressional Recognition from Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-OH) for being honored at the 22nd annual awards celebration of Poetry and Praise.
Jim Baron ’75 lives in Mentor, Ohio, with his wife of 35 years, Nancy. Their two daughters live in Columbus, Ohio, and Salt Lake City, and Jim and Nancy became grandparents in 2018. Jim still works at his photography business of over 30 years and maintains a studio in Cleveland, Ohio. He also has done tour guide work for Roads Scholars and has led trips in Cuyahoga Valley National Park and the Ohio presidential sites. He and Nancy enjoy travel, and last summer they biked 72 miles in America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride at Lake Tahoe, raising almost $5,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
Norman Butt ’75 graduated from Miami University in 1988 and joined The Architectural Group, Inc., of Dayton, Ohio, where he focuses on university and health care projects. He is a part of organizations such as the American Institute of Architects and the United States Green Build Council. Norman lives in Oxford, Ohio, and is a member of the board of directors of Oxford Community Arts Center.
David Crandall ’75 retired in September 2018 after a 45-year career in student affairs in higher education. He credits the worldclass early 1970s OWU student affairs team for a great start in a rewarding career. He served the last 19 years as executive director of the Associated Students at California State University, Northridge. His wife, Maureen O’Connell, hopes to retire from Northrop Grumman in the coming year or so. Her daughters, Samantha and Taylor, are in restaurant management and college admissions, respectively. His daughters, Katie and Taylor, are in P.A. graduate school and children’s nutrition, respectively. In retirement David plans to learn tai chi and to play the cello, as well as continue his photography, carpentry, and travel.
Ann Gregor Fleming ’75 spent the next 29 years after OWU as a military spouse, moving 14 times, living in places such as Okinawa, Korea, England, and Belgium. Her hardest move was taking her only child to college in Florida and then getting on a plane for Belgium where she remained for the next three years. Her greatest challenge was in October 2018 surviving Category 5 Hurricane Michael. She and her mother spent the first night in the car after the roof, ceilings, and water came crashing down all around them. They are slowly rebuilding, but very grateful and thankful.
Dick Fowler ’75 is a volunteer leader at Loaves & Fishes Community Services. He retired in 2013 after 11 years as a director with Intrado, a 9-1-1 database management and call routing service. Prior to that, he completed a 24-year career with AT&T in sales management, marketing, and product management. He is the coauthor of a family of nine U.S. patents for 9-1-1 services in Private Branch Exchange and campus environments. Dick and his wife, Nancy, enjoy travel and spending as much time as possible with their two grandchildren—and regularly reuniting with his Sig Ep brothers. They live in Naperville, Ill.
Ann Ellsworth Guins ’75 and her husband live in Hudson, Fla., from fall through spring, before returning to Ohio in the summer. Their grown children are married, and they have one grandson and three step-grandchildren. While Ann still swims competitively and is certified in adult learn-to-swim, she and her husband have also taken up pickleball.
Jay Immelt ’75 graduated from Seattle University School of Law in 1977 and conducted trial work in state and federal courts across the nation. He then led a career as a commercial and residential real estate appraiser in Washington and Massachusetts for over 20 years, and is now responsible for all commercial and residential property valuations for the Office of the Assessor in Arizona’s Yuma County. Jay has one daughter, Hanna, and three grandchildren. He describes himself as an enthusiastic, but only marginally talented, musician and a dedicated desert rat.
Robin Horton LeBlanc ’75 continues to lead Plan NH, the unofficial Smart Growth organization of New Hampshire. In this role, she manages programs that raise awareness of the impact of community design and support a vision of healthy and vibrant towns and neighborhoods across the state. She is an advocate for housing choices, walkable downtowns, and reframing how we think about aging. Robin believes strongly in the participation of residents and others in creating a new future for communities. She lives in Portsmouth, N.H., with her husband, Charles. They have three grown children and two grandchildren.
Kathy Geer Root ’75 is sorry to miss the class’ 45th reunion, as she will be at her daughter’s Ph.D. graduation from the University of California, Berkeley. Kathy retired last October, showing up on the courts to learn to play pickleball the next day—definitely a new sports addiction. She is looking to complete triathlon numbers 48, 49, and 50 this summer (after finishing No. 47 in September 2019, shown at right), visit England twice for her granddaughters, travel to Iceland (again), California, and Austin, Texas, along with anything else she can think to do. Three kids with three spouses, three grandkids, and no work—life is excellent. She wishes a happy reunion to everyone! Oh-Wooo!
Annie Griffith Seiler ’75 has worked at Ohio Wesleyan for almost 37 years in a variety of capacities. In 2001, while serving as OWU’s director of alumni relations, she helped organize a tournament of lacrosse alumni in Lake Placid, N.Y. Former lacrosse coach Richie Seiler ’72 and Annie reconnected there and were married in 2002. Since then, the couple have lived in Baltimore, where she works for OWU remotely. They have four adult children and three grandchildren. When not working, Annie and Richie love to hike, fly fish, and camp in Montana, Wyoming, and Idaho, and travel wherever they can in North America. Through their travels, work, alumni lacrosse, and more, they love connecting and reconnecting with many OWU friends.
Agnes Haigh Widder ’75 is in her 41st year as a librarian at Michigan State University Libraries in East Lansing, Mich. She is responsible for British, French, medieval/ Renaissance, and religious studies. In 1986 she married Keith Widder, a Western Great Lakes historian working for Mackinac Island State Park Commission. He has retired, and she has retirement on her radar as well.
Michael Jordan ’76 was awarded the Royal Palm Literary Award for his first novel, The Company of Demons. More than 500 qualifiers submitted for this prestigious award, given by the Florida Writers Association, and Michael’s book based on the true story of the infamous Torso Murderer emerged as the winner. After graduating from OWU, Michael earned a law degree from George Washington University and went into trial law with work as a civil litigator. He continued writing all the way into his current retired life in Longboat Key, Fla.
Robert DiBiasio ’77, the senior vice president of public affairs for the Cleveland Indians, spoke on the team’s 2020 fortunes in February in Ashland, Ohio. He is in his 41st season of public relations with the MLB team, even hosting the popular Indians Alumni Roundtable Show on Sportstime Ohio (STO).
Maureen Staley Cary ’80 notes it’s been 40 years since the muggy indoor graduation ceremony during which class president Bridgett Donnell played the Kenny Loggins song “This Is it” as an intro to her speech; four decades since her younger sister stumbled down the bleachers of Branch Rickey on her way to the bathroom after too much partying the night before; 479 months since her address was Delaware, Ohio, and she thought college graduation meant she was an adult. Maureen married Peter Cary ’79, and they have four grown children. She shifted from journalism and communications into freelance work and parenting before attending Boston College for a degree in counseling psychology. Maureen has worked as a psychotherapist for nearly a decade and feels fortunate to be in a high-demand field that values life experience. She looks forward to seeing everyone in May.
Sandy Bodine Demarest ’80 lives in Amherst, N.H., with her husband, Russ. She owns Demarest Directions, a career, leadership, and retirement transition coaching business. She loves working with mid-to-late-career clients to help them find purpose and navigate their next chapter. Sandy is coauthoring a book, Conscious Living in the Second Half of Life. She loves spending time with their three daughters, Melissa Demarest Ruggiero ’09, Brooke Demarest, and Leah Demarest, who are scattered across the country. Sandy and Russ welcomed their granddaughter, Makenzie, and visit the family in Littleton, Colo. whenever they can.
William Ingram ’80 will retire from his presidency at Durham Technical Community College in North Carolina. After 35 years in leadership roles, and 12 as its president, he saw Durham Tech expand its main campus and add another campus in Hillsborough, N.C. William also has served as a senior vice president, chief instructional officer, director of continuing education, and more.
Rob Last ’80 of East Lansing, Mich., is finishing up a three-year term in the leadership of the American Society of Plant Biologists while serving as professor of plant biochemistry at Michigan State University. He expresses his gratitude for the great training in chemistry, botany, and zoology he received from OWU faculty in those and other departments.
Matthew Tabenken ’80 relocated from Massachusetts to Falmouth, Maine, in 2010, building a house bordering a fairway on a golf course. For the past 12 years, he has managed marketing and sales for Moët Hennessy U.S.A. in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont, part of the LVMH group. Matthew’s wife, Joyce, is an administrative coordinator for Pierce Atwood LLP, one of Maine’s largest law firms. Their daughter, Lily, is a high school senior and has been accepted to many schools, including OWU. They have a vacation home on the ocean in New Harbor, Maine, and have also enjoyed traveling to Lanai, Hawaii; London; and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, in the past year.
Henry “Lee” Cooper IV ’85 joined Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe (WCAS) as an Operating Partner. WCAS is a private equity firm focused on the health care and technology industries, and Cooper brings his experience as an accomplished health care executive with over 25 years of leadership at GE.
Darryl Peal ’85 was named Northern Kentucky University’s chief diversity, equity, and inclusion officer (CDO) and Title IX coordinator. Darryl is arriving at this new position with experience from the National Collegiate Athletic Association in driving strategic initiatives through engagements and partnerships with NCAA members, sponsors, and external stakeholders.
Mary-Ann Wanjui-Wamalwa ’85 was a second-generation international student at OWU, quickly understanding why her father, Joseph Wanjui ’61, wanted her to attend his alma mater. The preinternet exposure to both American and international students provided a multicultural environment she never would have experienced had she studied at home in Kenya. She followed suit and sent her daughter, Mukami Wamala ’21, to OWU.
Gathering for a “Girlfriend Mini Reunion,” (from left, standing) Linda Nicewander Brincks ’86, Linda Pollitz ’86, Alison Cauthorn ’86, Pat Franz ’86; (seated) Serena Bowman White ’86, and Laura Reynolds Kessler ’86 shared OWU swag to commemorate the occasion. At Pat’s home outside Oklahoma City, the friends of 37 years sported handmade matching red and black scarves.
Bruce Clash ’86 rewon a seat on the Carlisle school board in Carlisle, Pa., on Nov. 5. After earning his degree in politics and government at OWU, he received a Master of Public Administration from American University. Bruce currently works as Pennsylvania state director for Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, part of the nonprofit Council for a Strong America.
Evan Dockser ’86 was appointed managing director of Eyzenberg & Company’s new regional office in Washington, D.C. As the first hire, Evan will work to grow the real estate investment bank’s presence in the area and leverage its capital markets expertise. He previously worked in hospitality and residential transactions with clients, including urban boutique hotels and signature golf resorts.
Todd Fitch ’86 was hired as offensive coordinator for Vanderbilt University’s football team. He is a 35-year veteran of college football and spent the past four seasons at Louisiana Tech. Todd has been offensive coordinator at Boston College and has coached at Iowa State, South Carolina, West Virginia, and Ohio Wesleyan.
Dean Hood ’86 became Murray State University’s head football coach in December. Formerly the special teams coordinator and defensive backs coach at the University of Kentucky, Dean has coached collegiate football for over 30 years, leading teams from Eastern Kentucky University, Wake Forest University, Ohio University, and more. At OWU he earned three All-North Coast Athletic Conference selections when he played as a defensive back, eventually landing him in the Ohio Wesleyan Athletic Hall of Fame.
Ann Pryor ’87 is settling into her second year as senior communications manager at Kensington Books in New York City. She was brought on board to help grow the New York-based independent publisher’s nonfiction line, and she manages publicity, marketing, and tours for authors whose topics range from health, military history, and cinema to business leadership and inspiration. To date she has helped create a New York Times bestseller and has booked authors on such outlets as NPR, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, and the Today Show. Ann spent 17 years at McGraw-Hill Professional handling public relations for authors in the consumer and business space; she also worked at HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster. Ann and her husband, Mark Miller ’85, live in Jackson Heights, Queens, one of New York City’s most diverse neighborhoods, and still talk fondly of classes with Conrad Kent on the Modern Temper and Blake Michael in comparative religion.
Joseph Schroeder ’87 was celebrated as the cross country coach of the year for the second consecutive year by the Boston Globe. He has led the Martha’s Vineyard boys cross country team into island history by winning the Massachusetts Division II State Championship among other achievements across his 31 years of coaching.
Ann Krysiak Kirschner ’90 was hired at North Coast Angel Fund (NCAF) as chief financial officer, the first role of its kind there. With over 25 years of financial management experience with top accounting firms, she will lead NCAF’s financial management and analysis activities.
Edward “Ted” Cosgrove IV ’92 was nominated as a candidate for the Framingham Zoning Board of Appeals in Massachusetts. Recommended by Mayor Yvonne Spicer, Ted is one of six presented to the city council for review and approval. At Ohio Wesleyan he majored in politics and government.
Rebecca Roesner ’92, chair and professor of chemistry at Illinois Wesleyan University, has been named associate provost. She joined Illinois Wesleyan in 1997 and was named chair of the chemistry department in 2006. Among Rebecca’s many awards is the 2014 Kemp Foundation Award for Teaching Excellence, the university’s highest teaching honor, presented annually to a faculty member.
Victoria Hawes Gearity ’93 announced she will not seek a fourth term as mayor of Ossining, N.Y. She will explore opportunities that build on her experience in economic development and sustainability. Victoria was the first woman elected mayor of her community. Her administration has overseen a period of thriving economic growth while maintaining no tax rate increase and implementing energy-saving initiatives. With college tuition bills on the horizon for her two sons, Victoria is leaving office in order to earn a greater income for her family. She acknowledges it will be challenging to find a position as rewarding as serving her community as mayor, and she keeps open the door to serve in a locally elected office again one day.
Jeffrey Zalatoris ’93 graduated from Wesley Theological Seminary with a Master of Divinity, was commissioned as a provisional elder in the Baltimore-Washington Conference of the United Methodist Church, and is now a pastor at Harmony UMC in Falling Waters, W.Va. With his wife, Alice Ehlers Zalatoris ’93, he is settling in Martinsburg, W.Va., and adjusting to life with their son away at college.
Amy Prosenjak ’94 was promoted to president and CEO of A to Z Wineworks, a winery that grows and crafts wines only from Oregon sources. When she joined the company in 2007 as chief financial officer, the winery was producing around 80,000 cases annually. Now, as one of the top-selling wineries in the state, it produces about 400,000 cases a year. See Cheers! story for more information.
Joe Cassidy ’95 is in his 24th year teaching in Montgomery County Public Schools, with the last 13 years at Whitman High School in Bethesda, Md., and the last 18 years as a varsity baseball coach. Joe will celebrate his 10th wedding anniversary in July with his wife, Libby, also a teacher, and they spend their free summers in Cape Cod, Mass.
David Kovar ’95 is a professor of molecular genetics and cell biology at the University of Chicago. He lives in the Beverly neighborhood of Chicago with his wife, Elizabeth, and their children, Emily and Roger.
Kenneth Robinson ’95 will be taking on additional responsibilities for the American Red Cross as the regional disaster officer for the central and southern Ohio regions. There since 1995, he says it has been a dream job to work with volunteers in alleviating human suffering and creating prepared, resilient communities. After 23 years in a traditional Rotary Club, he switched to the Ohio Pathways E-Club to better accommodate his schedule and is now writing an online training program for presidents-elect. He and Tara Robinson ’93, a physician, are entering their 25th year of marriage. Their oldest son will graduate from Bowling Green State University in May before attending law school, and their other son will be entering his second year at BGSU in the fall.
Justin Krueger ’97 and his wife, Ann-Morgan, built a home in Marysville, Ohio, where Justin owns his own practice as a pediatrician and internist. He also enjoys working as the medical director of the Newborn Nursery and as the chair of internal medicine at Memorial Hospital. They welcomed their fifth child, daughter Molly Anne Krueger, on March 11, 2019. Molly joins her older sisters, Katie and Paige, as well as her older brothers, Sam and Ryan. The family is usually found at a soccer field, a track, a show choir competition, or a cross country meet (or busy doing laundry from all of the above).
Heidi Romero ’97 was chosen as the West Virginia recipient of the 2019 Upsher-Smith NASPA Excellence in Innovation Award for demonstrating innovative pharmacy practice resulting in improved patient care. She works as a pharmacist at Griffith & Feil Drug in Kenova, W.Va.
Joshua Mandel ’98 was signed as head coach of the Berlin Rebels, the 2019 German Football League quarterfinalists (American football). He started coaching with the Rebels in late 2010, became the defensive coordinator in 2015, and will begin his new role as head coach in the 2020 season. While at OWU, he was a physical education major, served as captain of the football team, and lettered all four years.
Mark Wade ’99 was the guest artist at the annual Central Ohio Symphony holiday concert on Dec. 15 in Gray Chapel. Mark holds a doctoral degree in trumpet performance from Ohio State University, has taught at Denison University, and is a national hammered dulcimer champion. He played as a soloist and with the orchestra on the hammered dulcimer.
Glenda Wucher Bernhardt ’00 was named the new CEO and executive director of Freedom School Partners, a nonprofit organization in Charlotte, N.C., that promotes the long-term success of children by preventing summer learning loss through igniting a passion for reading and inspiring a love for learning.
Anand Philip ’00 lived in New York City for 15 years; Cambridge, Mass., for two years while earning an MBA; and has lived in Minneapolis for the past three. He has been involved in private equity and hedge fund industries the entire time and now runs his own investment firm. He and his wife, Amy, have a son, Teddy, and are expecting another child. With a growing business and tiny kids ruling their lives, there is little free time.
John Vandersall ’00 moved back home to Indianapolis a few years ago. Now a realtor with the largest independent brokerage in Indiana, TC Tucker, John has helped many individuals and families buy and sell in central Indiana. In 2018 he ranked in the top 10 percent of new agents. He is also helping organize a central Indiana alumni chapter and serves on the development committee for School on Wheels, a local nonprofit providing tutors for homeless children in Indianapolis.
Jose “Pepe” Villasenor III ’01 was named the All-Area Coach of the Year by the Lee Central Coast News in Santa Maria, Calif. He has won two Mountain League championships in his two seasons leading the St. Joseph High School football team, his first head coaching position.
The past year has been an amazing one for emerging actress and voice-over actor Veronica Dillard ’02. She was nominated among the top 30 finalists for the CBS 2 audition spotlight at the That’s Voiceover! Career Expo in Los Angeles. Now her film Humanity Without a Home, written by Armon Robinson and directed by Armon Robinson and Rel Torry, is available on Amazon Prime. You also can watch Veronica in See The Light, written and directed by Aretha Tatum, which was featured in the 2019 Chicago South Side Film Festival. See The Light also screened at the Vocalize Film Event in Trinidad and the Inspired Film Festival in Atlanta. The film won the Best Inspirational Film Award at the 2019 Anaheim Film Festival this year.
Josh Dawson ’05 was elected the 2020 vice president of the Greater Dublin (Ohio) Realty Association; he will be president in 2021. As a realtor with Core Ohio Realty Advisors and a Dublin resident, Josh specializes in residential and multifamily sales in central Ohio. He also serves on the government affairs committee of the Columbus Board of Realtors.
Michelle Koch ’06 joined the law firm Baker & Hostetler LLP of Cleveland, Ohio, in September as a conflicts researcher. She was previously employed as an investigator at Research Associates Inc., of Westlake, Ohio. Michelle celebrated one year of cancer remission in November.
Christy Sicher George ’07 was named executive director of the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC), an organization overseeing utility services to Illinois citizens. She is ICC’s first noninterim female executive director. Christy previously served as the deputy budget director for the city of Chicago and assistant commissioner for the Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection.
Joe Duffy ’09 was promoted to real estate development director at Union Miles Development Corp. in Cleveland, Ohio. He also was accepted as a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners with the American Planning Association.
It was a win-win situation for Ohio voters in the City of Delaware’s Fourth Ward. In the November general election, voters chose between two OWU alumni: Drew Farrell ’10 and Sarah JanTausch ’14. Drew, hailing from Toledo, majored in history for teachers at OWU. Both he and his wife, Whitney Deel Farrell ’10, now teach in central Ohio. Sarah, raised in Delaware, graduated with a degree in politics and government. She has led a career in state government focusing on policy areas including business-impacting regulations. She is married to Jonathan Bocanegra ’14, a data scientist at JPMorgan Chase & Co. In the final analysis, voters tapped Democratic candidate Drew for the post.
Brandon Luttinger ’10 married Dana Lord in Duxbury, Mass., on Aug. 17, and they honeymooned in Bali, Indonesia, for two weeks. In the fall, the couple purchased their first home in South Boston. Brandon received his MBA from Northeastern University in 2018 and will be celebrating his five-year anniversary at Fidelity Investments later this year.
Kristen Lear ’11 was featured in an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) publication. The article chronicles her scientific passion, bats, and details her first real experience with the animals while at OWU. She went on to earn a U.S. Fulbright Postgraduate Scholarship to further study bats in Australia. Kristen is an If/Then Ambassador with AAAS, where she serves as a role model for girls interested in STEM careers. She also will appear in a segment of Mission Unstoppable on CBS and lead a National Geographic Explorer Classroom session.
Anthony Peddle ’14 presented his dissertation research at the National Association for the Education of Young Children conference in Nashville, Tenn., in November. After defending his dissertation, “Teachers, Positive ACE Scores and Their Informed Classroom Practices,” Anthony is expected to graduate with his Doctor of Education degree in leadership studies from Ashland University in May.
Megan Pinto ’14 had her poetic work “To the Old Man Who Lived on a Hill; The Unfolding” published by Ploughshares, a journal of contemporary writing. She is a playmakers playwright and resident artist at the Purple Rose Theatre Company in Chelsea, Mich., and an artist-in-residence at The Tank NYC.
Ryan Haddad ’15 was featured in Cleveland Magazine for his rising career in acting as a gay, disabled man. He landed a big role in the Netflix high school dramedy The Politician as Andrew Cashman, a cunning teen, and he’s performed his autobiographical comedic solo play (also his OWU senior thesis project) “Hi, Are You Single?” nationwide. Ryan continues to explore these intersections of identity in the filming of season 2 of The Politician and in four other productions he is workshopping or performing.
Miles Mackenzie ’15 cofounded a new digital beer, wine, and liquor delivery platform, Handoff. Based in Colorado, Miles and the other two founders of Handoff aimed to create a viable way to replenish drinks without missing a minute of an exciting sports game. Handoff is supported by mobile, Alexa, and Google devices and guarantees deliveries in 60 minutes or less at a nominal fee.
Brianna Robinson ’15 won the 2020 6th Getting to Carnegie Hall competition as soprano. As part of the prize, she will fly to St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands to perform in the Water Island Music Festival.
Jonathan Overstreet ’15 was named a finalist for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program 2019–2020. As one of the 15 students nominated, Jonathan has received a grant offer for an English Teaching Assistantship in South Africa. He majored in zoology at OWU.
Joseph and Linda Diamond H’18 received the Spirit of Philanthropy award at the Delaware County Foundation’s annual Evening of Generosity on Oct. 10. The honorary alumni are both founding members and board members of Main Street Delaware and contribute to nearly every volunteer committee. Their community engagement extends to their dedication to preserving the history of the Strand Theatre, where they can be seen helping during busy opening nights. Joe and Linda established an estate gift for OWU that will create the C. Joseph and Linda Diamond Endowed Scholarship, further exhibiting their community connection and philanthropic spirit.
James Dicke II was elected president of the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans Inc., a nonprofit educational organization honoring outstanding individuals and youth seeking higher education. James is a 2015 Horatio Alger Award recipient and was the association’s vice president before his election. He is the chairman and CEO of Crown Equipment, an Ohiobased manufacturer of forklifts, and is recognized for his generous contributions to scholarships. James became a member of the association’s prestigious Legacy of Achievement Circle for those who have greatly contributed to the endowment of Horatio Alger scholarships.
Kristen Houser Sluss ’06 and Phil Sluss welcomed their third son, Micah Paul, on May 30, 2019.
Blaire Hayden Bartish ’07 and Dave Bartish welcomed their second child, Rosalie Joyce, on Sept. 11. Big brother Louie is excited to take care of his “little princess,” but is a little frustrated she doesn’t know how to play baseball yet.
Caitlyn Nestleroth Johnson ’08 and James “JJ” Johnson IV welcomed their first child, Brooke McKenzie, on Oct. 13.
Matthew McNeal ’08 and Kate Elwell McNeal ’09 welcomed their first son, Mason James, on Jan. 6. Also celebrating are aunt Mary McNeal ’13, great-aunt Dawn Nesbitt Wright ’85, and cousins Jake Wright ’16 and Reilly Wright ’20.
Kevin McMahon ’10 and Kaitlin Raphael McMahon ’09 welcomed their first child, Jack James, on Nov. 12. Also celebrating are grandparents Susan Harris Raphael ’80 and James Raphael ’79.
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