Author Archives: Jim Van Sweden

About Jim Van Sweden

Director, College Communications

Odile Gollé, Kalamazoo College Foreign Study Program in Strasbourg

Madame Gollé, widow of M. Maurice Gollé, who for many years was director of the Kalamazoo College foreign study program in Strasbourg, passed away on October 18, 2015, in Strasbourg at the age of 92. She frequently interacted with and came to know many Kalamazoo students over the years because of her warm, outgoing, and easily approachable personality. She had a wonderful sense of humor and could always be counted on to have an interesting joke or humorous story to relate. She liked to entertain, was an excellent cook (as anyone who enjoyed the hospitality of her home would confirm), and a passionate dog lover. A wonderful wife, mother and friend, she was preceded in death by her husband and one son and is survived by two sons and the deceased son’s wife and their families. (Obituary by Joe Fugate, professor emeritus of German, and director emeritus of foreign study)

Edith (Hoven) Strome ’45

Edie died on December 29, 2015. She and her husband Forrest, who survives, met as freshmen at Kalamazoo College. Edie graduated with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She and Forrest married shortly after their graduation and were wed for 70 years. They have two children, seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Edie was a consummate homemaker and a gracious hostess to friends from the First Baptist Church of Rochester (New York) and the Kalamazoo College Alumni Group. She served as a volunteer for many years at Strong Memorial Hospital and the Fairport Baptist Home, where she was a member of the Women’s Service Board.

 

Cynthia A. Berman ’79

ynthia A. BermanCynthia, a principal at the law firm Kramon & Graham (Baltimore, Maryland), has been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America 2016 for her work in real estate law.  At K she majored in economics and business, and she studied abroad in Muenster, Germany. Known also for her civic engagement, Cynthia was recently appointed to her alma mater’s Alumni Association Executive Board, and she was elected to the Business Volunteers Maryland board of directors. BVM is a nonprofit that connects business professionals to nonprofit organizations seeking volunteers and board leadership.

Sarah Arnosky ’09

Sarah, a.k.a. the “Bricktator,” is making a name (even two!) for herself in roller derby. She’s a lifelong athlete: a childhood figure skater, high school basketball player, and Hornet soccer standout (she was captain of the women’s varsity team two years). At K Sarah majored in biology and studied abroad in Oaxaca, Mexico. After graduation, while living in San Francisco in 2011, Sarah got hooked on roller derby after attending a local game. She joined the Bay Area Derby Girls, a four-team league. Last year, when Arnosky moved to St. Louis, Mo., to attend graduate school at Washington University, she joined the St. Louis-based Arch Rival Roller Girls (ARRG) league and had an immediate impact. She was named MVP of the ARRG league this season, and she led her travel team to a No. 10 international ranking. In November of 2015 Sarah and her ARRG travel team qualified for the WFTDA Championships in St. Paul, Minn. The event included teams from five countries and was streamed live on ESPN3. In roller derby, each team has five players on the track at one time — four blockers and one jammer. The goal of the game is for the jammer to lap opposing players as they go around the track. Each time the jammer laps an opponent, one point is scored for the jammer’s side. The blockers are thus simultaneously attempting to stop their opponent’s jammer while also trying to create space for their own jammer to skate through. Sarah is a jammer for ARRG with the moniker “Bricktator.” She loves the sport for its physicality and footwork and for the fact that it favors so many different types of athlete body–short, tall, wide and thin. The sport has surged during the past 15 years with hundreds of women’s leagues around the world.

Claude M. Cranston ’41

Claude died on December 11, 2015. He was 95. He grew up in Linden, Michigan, and earned his bachelor’s degree at K in history and later earned a master’s degree from the University of Michigan. He married Verna L. Wheeler on June 11, 1941; she preceded him in death on April 1, 2014. Claude retired from Linden Schools in 1979 with 38 years of service. He was one of four people who were the initial inductees into the Linden High School Athletic Hall of Fame. He was also a member of the Genesee County Coaches and Officials Association. He was very active in local and state athletics.

Louis Leon Grossnickle ’58

Leon died on December 14, 2015. He earned his bachelor’s degree from K and his master’s degree from Wayne State University. He married Elaine Kontz ’54, and they were wed for 61 years and had three children. Leon was a veteran of the U.S. Army and enjoyed a long career in the Waterford (Michigan) School District as a teacher, community school director and principal.

Patrick Condon ’70

Patrick died on September 30, 2015, in Carlsbad, California. He grew up in Yellow Springs, Ohio, where his youth was characterized by his insatiable liberal arts curiosity, voracious reading and eclectic sense of humor. At K, he majored in English and studied abroad in Madrid, Spain. He studied for his Ph.D. at the University of California San Diego and focused his research on English and Irish literature. He did not complete his Ph.D. but instead went on to Bolt Law School at the University of California, Berkeley. He passed the bar in California and after clerking, began to practice appellate law in the North County. He always tried to apply his skill as a lawyer to cases in aid of the poor and downtrodden. He helped a lot of people who would never have received justice without him.

Michael R. Johnson ’06

ichaelJohnsonMike recently authored a geology and paleontology guide of southern Colorado. That’s a great story, and Mike tells it best. During the summer of 2015 he did an internship with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) through the Geological Society of America’s GeoCorps program. “I was based in Canon City, Colorado, near both the Royal Gorge and several dinosaur quarries (so basically paradise),” he wrote.  “My mentor had funding to write a book (for the BLM’s “Junior Explorer” series) that detailed the geology and paleontology of southern Colorado.  So we teamed up with Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument; they paired me with another intern who had experience as an illustrator; and we went and wrote a book!”  The book covers seven sites of historical and/or geologic importance along the Gold Belt National Scenic Byway so that kids on vacation with their parents can go to these sites after or while reading about them.  Along the way, the book teaches geologic time, paleontology, how to recognize common types of rock, and how geologists interpret the rock record.

“Writing this thing was a lot of fun.  Although there were some general guidelines for the book series that we had to follow, the activities and content were entirely up to us!  And of course we had to go to all those places in person so that we’d know exactly what visitors would be able to see, and how each site might fit with our educational goals.  The reception for the book has been fantastic as well.  Not only were our mentors impressed at how quickly we put together a good product, but everyone outside of our group who has seen it has been impressed.  The State Paleontologist for Wyoming (admittedly a friend of mine) told me that he wants his office to put out books like that.”

Mike and his illustrator and field partner (an undergraduate at Northern Arizona University) presented their book at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America in Baltimore in early December.

At K, Mike majored in biology and studied abroad in Wollongong, Australia. He earned his master’s degree at the University of Wyoming and is currently in a Ph.D. program at the University of Wisconsin (Madison). “Mike is an excellent example of someone who has pursued his passion,” wrote Associate Professor of Biology Ann Fraser.  “I first met him when he was a sophomore in 2003, and even back then he was enthralled by paleontology.”

Paul Shapiro ’70

Paul Shapiro (second from right) is honored at the ArtSchools Network national meeting.

Paul Shapiro (second from left) is honored at the ArtSchools Network national meeting.

Paul recently received recognition for his work in arts integration at the Seattle Academy of Arts and Sciences. At its national conference the ArtSchools Network cited Paul and his efforts with an “Exemplary Arts Program” designation. Paul is a former actor, Ringling Brothers circus clown and international management consultant. He received the Stone Award in Education when he graduated from K. He is also a recipient of the Winifred Ward Award from the American Theatre Association, and he can be seen with actor Elliot Gould on Netflix in “Switchmas.” At K, Paul majored in political science and studied abroad in Ghana. He earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Montana.

Nathan White ’06

Nathan is the senior legislative manager for Access Now, a New York City-headquartered advocacy organization that defends and extends the digital rights of users at risk around the world. A former communications director in the U.S. Congress, Nathan has shaped political and social issue campaigns across the United States and the Internet. He earned his bachelor’s degree from K in political science, and he studied abroad in Hong Kong. He earned a master’s degree in global marketing, communications and advertising from Emerson College in Boston.