Class Notes

Russ Schelb ’61

Russ served in Vietnam during the American war there. He and most of his men survived their service. It was in the United States that he suffered a gunshot wound during a robbery at the motel he owned and operated in Denver. He has since retired and enjoys life fully with his wife Cai Thi and their family. At K, Russ was a terrific runner and a you-can-do-it supporter of others, according to his cross-country teammate Don Schneider ’63. Don and Russ recently reconnected after 50 years. “Russ says he has slowed some,” wrote Don, “but you can reach him quickly via e-mail.”

Henry Yaple ’63

Henry recently completed a 30-year labor of love: a bibliography listing the thousands of works printed by a celebrated religious commune formerly located in Benton Harbor, Michigan. In the early 20th century the Israelite House of David (founded by Benjamin and Mary Purnell) was known for its semi-professional baseball team, whose players sported long locks, flowing beards, and major league talent. The Benton Harbor House of David was later re-organized by Mary Purnell as Mary’s City of David.

Yaple earned his bachelor’s degree in English from K and a Master of Library Sciences degree from Western Michigan University. He began his professional life as a librarian and bibliographer at Michigan State University. He retired as Librarian Emeritus from Whitman College (Walla Walla, Washington) and did much of his compilation work during retirement.

According to Sue Moore, who wrote a story about Yaple that appeared in South County News, “The idea for researching and compiling a bibliography stemmed from his studies as a librarian. The sect headed by Benjamin and Mary Purnell, who had only an eighth grade education, realized that it could attract converts with written material outlining its beliefs. They didn’t attribute or date most of their works but published thousands of titles. The published works helped to attract large numbers of men and women to become members, some from as far away as Australia.

“According to Mary’s City of David web site, the sect published The Star of Bethlehem and by 1910 it was in its third edition, having circulated around the world to the churches and followers of the former six Israelite messengers. Their “Eden Springs Park” was in its second successful season in 1910 and on its way to become America’s premiere pre-Disney theme park. The House of David schools would provide education and recreational activities for its children, who soon developed into legendary barn storming baseball teams, known to Satchel Paige as “Jesus boys”, and traveling jazz bands that would catch the attention of America in sweeping nationwide vaudeville circuit tours throughout the 1920s. By the mid-1920s, and in spite of the worldwide economic depression, the Israelite House of David and Mary’s City of David would come to dominate southwestern Michigan’s economy, tourism and agricultural industries.”

Yaple’s retirement activities are not confined to academics. He is an avid skier, and has also published two works on that avocation. He and his wife, whom he met skiing, live out west in ski country.

Dennis Lamb ’63

Dennis and his wife, Pat, recently moved from University Park, Pennsylvania, to Fort Collins, Colorado. It may have been weather related, albeit not in the way one might think. Dennis may have been seeking more exciting weather. He majored in physics at K and did his senior thesis on thunderstorms, which marked the beginning of a career in weather. He joined the meteorology department at Penn State in 1986 and retired as a full professor in 2008. The following two years he spent writing a book on the Physics and Chemistry of Clouds. Now comes the recent move to Fort Collins. According to class agent Don Schneider, Dennis confessed that the weather in central Pennsylvania was seldom to his liking (not enough thunderstorms?). Dennis did a winter sabbatical in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and loved all the snow. He and Pat have a cottage on Crystal Lake near Benzonia, Michigan, where they can be found a few weeks every summer. You can reach Dennis at lno@psu.edu.

John Grandin ’63

On a recent trip to Florida from Rhode Island, John and his wife, Carol, stopped in Atlanta and had a great two-day visit with Dick Compans ’63 and his wife, Marian. John is professor emeritus of German and director emeritus of the International Engineering Program at the University of Rhode Island. Dick is professor of microbiology and immunology in the Emory University School of Medicine. He also directs the Influenza Pathogenesis & Immunology Research Center.

 

Bill Atkinson ’63

Class (1963) Agent Don Schneider reports that Bill is battling cancer of the neck that has affected his vocal chords as well as other areas of the throat and surrounding vasculature. Bill and his wife Linda made a recent trip to the M.D. Anderson Cancer Treatment Center to explore surgery as an option, but unfortunately that course of action was ruled out. Bill and Linda had hoped otherwise. Bill is working with physicians to determine a course of chemotherapy in an effort to control the cancer. If the cancer fails to respond to treatment, Bill and his physicians may choose to try experimental drugs.

Chuck Bender ’66

Chuck was named 2014 Master Gardener of the Year by Lakelands Master Gardeners Inc. Chuck averages about six hours a day tending his spring and summer garden. Lakelands Master Gardeners Inc. is a nonprofit, service-based corporation in South Carolina with a mission to extend public research-based education, horticultural programs and activities that benefit the community. Chuck lives in Cross Hill (S.C.) with his wife, Carol. He earned his degree at K in economics and business and studied abroad in Muenster, Germany. He retired after a long career in financial operations. Chuck serves on the Lander University Arboretum Committee and volunteers with Greenwood Performing Arts youth outreach programs.

Fred Taschner ’70

Fred retired from Chemical Abstracts Service after 41 years of employment. “My last position was as senior structure input analyst,” he wrote, “mostly responsible for structure input for carbohydrates (sugars) and small peptides. My team did abstracting and structuring for journals and patents reporting synthesis of chemicals containing or using sugars or amino acids/peptides. (For the chemists among you, look at Sections 33/34 of your CAS weekly publication.) In retirement, Gail (who retired from Capital University here in Columbus, Ohio, in 2010) and I will be doing some traveling (we just got back from a Caribbean cruise with Gail’s mother and middle sister) and have plans to follow Ohio State’s men’s and women’s golf teams. Gail continues to work for social justice with our local BREAD (Building Responsibility, Equality, And Dignity) organization. I plan to catch up on all the home projects that need attention–clean the basement, the garage, the computer room, and then it’s yard work season. Plus there is re-reading the public library’s science fiction collection. Part of the travel will be attending this fall’s reunion, so we hope to see lots of old friends there.”

Katherine Schantz ’70

Katherine was a featured speaker at WORKTECH 15 New York, part of the international conference series exploring the latest thinking on the future of work and the workplace. Katherine is Head of School at The Lab School of Washington, a private Washington, D.C., school focusing on elementary, middle school, and high school students with dyslexia, ADHD, and other language-based learning differences. Katherine earned her B.A. in economics from K and studied education with a concentration in counseling and consulting psychology at Harvard University. She currently belongs to a consortium of heads of independent schools across the country working to develop the most effective practices and environments for students with specific learning disabilities and ADHD. Her interest and expertise is in learning from neuroscience to develop effective educational practices for students with learning disabilities and ADHD, and fostering an arts-infused educational model. She has spoken at educational and mental health conferences on topics including neuropsychology, learning strategies, executive functioning, and preparing students with learning disabilities for college.

Cliff Van Eaton ’72

A book by Cliff has been named a finalist in the 2015 Royal Society of New Zealand Science Book Prize. Manuka: The Biography of an Extraordinary Honey, is the ‘rags-to-riches’ tale of how a piece of scientific serendipity turned an unwanted honey into a ground-breaking medicine. The Royal Society of New Zealand is modeled on the original Royal Society in England, the oldest continuing academy of sciences in the world. An important function of the Society is the sharing of science-based ideas in the overall New Zealand community, and the Book Prize is a way of celebrating the efforts of writers and publishers in that regard. The competition is held every two years, and is open to all books by New Zealand authors that “communicate scientific concepts in an interesting and readable way for a general audience.” The judges noted that “manuka honey is a uniquely New Zealand product, valued here and internationally for its rich taste and therapeutic properties.” They went on to write, “… this delightful and surprising book … tells the captivating story of the science behind the discovery of the antibiotic effects of manuka honey, with a focus on the scientists and beekeepers who have brought this product to the world.” Cliff is a well-known writer on beekeeping subjects and is co-author of two books on bee diseases. For more than 30 years he worked as a beekeeper adviser in New Zealand, and has also assisted beekeepers in countries as diverse as the Solomon Islands, Uruguay, and Vietnam. This is his first foray into popular non-fiction. Manuka: The Biography of an Extraordinary Honey is now on sale in bookstores in New Zealand, Australia, and the United Kingdom. The book is also available in the United States through Amazon.

Marti Goetz ’76

Marti has been named the first executive director of Friends of Bear’s Mill, a nonprofit organization formed in 2000 to ensure the 165-year-old mill (in Greenville, Ohio) is protected and remains open to the public. Marti brings more than 35 years of administration, executive planning, organizational leadership, project management, grant writing, communications, art production, and public awareness experience in the nonprofit sector. At K she earned her bachelor’s degree in art and studied abroad in Caen, France. She obtained a master’s degree in art therapy from Wright State University, and recently completed a doctorate in leadership and organizational change from Antioch University.

Mark Allen ’77, D.D.S.

Mark is a clinical instructor at the Kois Learning Center in Seattle, Washington. He is a member of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry and the Frances B. Vedder Society of Crown and Bridge Prosthodontics. He is a part time faculty member at Western Michigan University, where he also coaches the university’s rugby team. Mark practices dentistry in Kalamazoo. He earned his B.A. at K in chemistry and earned his D.D.S. from the University of Michigan (1981).

Dan Slattery ’79

Dan  is a painter who specializes in watercolors. The former president of the Northern Indiana Artists, Inc. , had an exhibit in his hometown (Mount Morris, Michigan), his first one there. Dan is a graduate of Mount Morris High School. He earned his bachelor’s degree in political science and earned a law degree from University of Michigan. He worked as an attorney for 18 years. Dan also teaches watercolor workshops with a focus on landscapes and seascapes. He also has worked in acrylic, oils, pen and ink, pastels, and ink washes.

Douglas Ray ’79, Ph.D.

Douglas has been named to lead a new office at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. In this new position, which Douglas began on June 1, he will identify and create strategic partnering opportunities between PNNL, research universities, and other scientific research institutions. For the last 10 years Douglas has overseen PNNL’s fundamental science research portfolio. PNNL is a national laboratory in the U.S. Department of Energy. Douglas majored in physics at K.

 

Jody Clark ’80

Jody was appointed chief operating officer of Beatty Development Group. She will oversee the operational management of the firm, including asset management, development, leasing, and finance. Beatty Development Group is a Baltimore City-based mixed-use development firm specializing in the creation of contemporary design-forward buildings in urban settings. Its signature project, Harbor Point, is currently under construction. At K, Jody majored in sociology and studied abroad in Madrid, Spain. She earned her M.B.A. from Loyola University.

Jon Stryker ’82

Jon received the 2015 Visionary Award from GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network), the leading national education organization focused on ensuring safe and affirming schools for all students. Jon is founder and president of the Arcus Foundation. He also serves on K’s board of trustees. In honoring Jon, GLSEN noted that “Jon Stryker has been a philanthropic pioneer, ensuring LGBT people have the same opportunities as everyone else. Since founding the Arcus Foundation in 2000, Mr. Stryker has become a leading funder and supporter of LGBT issues [and] Arcus has become one of the world’s largest LGBT-focused grant makers, leading the way in the U.S. and pioneering funding for LGBT issues globally…” Celebrating its 25th year, GLSEN envisions a world in which every child learns to respect and accept all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. The GLSEN Respect Awards showcase the work of students, educators, individuals, and corporations who serve as exemplary role models and have made a significant impact on the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth. Previous GLSEN Respect Awards honorees include actress Julia Roberts, Dreamworks Animation CEO Jeffery Katzenberg, film producers Bob and Harvey Weinstein, and former NBA player Jason Collins.

Ruth Moerdyk ’83

Ruth was awarded the Faith Award this year for recognition of her leadership and work in creating safe and affirming spaces through a faith lens. Ruth advocates for the LGBTQ community from the pulpit (she serves as the pastor of Christian Church-Disciples of Christ in Kalamazoo), in everyday life, and as chair of the Faith Alliance. During her time at Kalamazoo College, Moerdyk helped found the first LGB student organization at K and went on to provide leadership for the LGBTQ student organization at Chicago Theological Seminary. She earned her bachelor’s degree in religion and studied abroad in Sierra Leone.

Chris Reynolds ’83

Chris was appointed managing officer and general counsel and chief legal officer of Toyota Motor Corporation. He maintains offices in Torrance, California and Toyota City, Japan. He also will have an office in Plano, Texas, once Toyota’s new headquarters there are completed. Chris joined the company in 2007 and before this recent promotion served as general counsel and chief legal officer, Toyota Motor America, and group vice president, corporate secretary, chief environmental officer, and chief compliance officer, Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc. Chris is a member of the American Bar Association and serves on the boards of the Los Angeles Urban League, the Constitutional Rights Foundation, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and the Lincoln Family Life Center. He earned his bachelor’s degree in political science and studied abroad in Strasbourg, France. He earned his law degree from Harvard Law School.

Lisa Kron ’83

Lisa’s latest theatrical project, the Broadway show Fun Home, has drawn rave reviews. (The New York Times called it a “deeply moving triumph.” And critic Ben Brantley lauded it as extraordinary, pumping “oxygenating fresh air into the culture recycling center that is Broadway.”) The musical is an adaptation from Alison Bechdel’s graphic novel about growing up in a funeral home with a closeted gay dad who suffers an untimely death. Lisa wrote an accompanying book and the lyrics for the musical.

Judy Hehs ’85

Judy was inducted into the Michigan High School Tennis Coaches Association’s Hall of Fame on January 30, 2015. She works at the Academy of Sacred Heart (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) where she serves as associate head of school, upper school director, and women’s varsity tennis coach. When Judy was a high school player, team trips to Stowe Stadium may have influenced her decision to attend K. As a Hornet she played field hockey and basketball and sort of “fell into tennis. I played for Tish Loveless,” Judy said. “She was the field hockey coach, so showing up for tennis try-outs wasn’t intimidating. A former high school teammate came to get me from my dorm room the afternoon of try-outs and said that clearly I should play tennis. She was right. It was a great decision.” By the time that the Hornets reached the MIAA Tournament that spring, Judy was playing one-doubles with the one-singles player. “I was really inspired to continue playing after that experience,” she added. “I played all four years at K.” Since becoming varsity tennis coach at Sacred Heart, the Gazelles have won nine regional championships and finished second six times. They have recorded 11 top-ten finishes in state competition, including two state titles (2012 and 2013). Judy has been regional coach of the year on four occasions and was state coach of the year in 2001. She is a member of the Catholic High School League Hall of Fame.

Matt Peterson ’85

Matt is the new president of Jason International, Inc., an Arkansas-based manufacturer of luxury hydrotherapy baths. Matt earned his bachelor’s degree from K in economics. He studied abroad in Madrid, Spain. Matt holds a M.B.A. in marketing from Michigan State University and has spent his entire career in the consumer home products industry, including Whirlpool Corporation and York International. He was named one of Oklahoma’s Most Admired CEO’s in 2013 and was chairman of the board at the Edmond (Oklahoma) Chamber of Commerce.

David Rhoa ’90

David has been named to the board of trustees of the National Small Business Association. He has been a longtime staunch advocate for small business and family business at the state and federal level. He is president of Lake Michigan Mailers and a visiting instructor in Kalamazoo College’s department of economics and business.

 

Scott Garcia ’91

Scott was named assistant vice president of investments at Wells Fargo Advisors (Aspen, Colo.). Scott earned his B.A. in economics and business at K and studied abroad in Madrid, Spain. Scott also is a lieutenant and 11-year member of the Basalt (Colo.) and Rural Fire Protection District. He and his wife and their three children live in Basalt.

Corey Marks ’92

Corey is a professor and director of creative writing for the department of English at the University of North Texas. He is a prizewinning author of two volumes of poetry, Renunciation and, more recently, The Radio Tree. Corey is also a poetry editor at the American Literary Review and a judge for the University of North Texas Rilke Prize, which recognizes mid-career poets. An article on Corey that mentions his roots in rural Michigan and at Kalamazoo College appeared in the NTDaily.com.

Morowa Yejidé ’92

Autism, incarceration, single parenthood, racism, eating disorders are some of the heavyweight topics Morowa takes on in her award-winning debut novel, Time of the Locust. Former Kalamazoo College employee (and occasional LuxEsto freelance writer) Zinta Aistars interviewed Morowa for “Between the Lines,” a book review radio show of WMUK, Kalamazoo’s local affiliate of NPR. You can listen to the interview here.

Jeffrey Muth ’94

Jeffrey has joined the Grand Rapids office of the Miller Johnson law firm. Jeffrey, who most recently worked for another Grand Rapids law firm, is expected to continue his complex commercial litigation and corporate counseling practice at Miller Johnson. His experience extends also to alternate dispute resolution including arbitration and mediation. At K Jeffrey majored in history; he earned his law degree from the DePaul University College of Law. He is listed in Best Lawyers in America for commercial litigation and in Michigan Super Lawyers for business litigation and insurance coverage.

Scott Hunsinger ’94

Scott is the new district coordinator of bilingual education, English as a second language, and world languages for Kalamazoo Public Schools. Scott was interim coordinator last school year. He previously spent 19 years as a Spanish and social studies teacher at Hillside Middle School in Kalamazoo. He earned a master’s degree in educational leadership from Western Michigan University.

Amy Houtrow ’96, M.D.

Amy is division chief of pediatric rehabilitation medicine at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, and she was recently appointed to the Institute of Medicine’s Standing Committee of Medical Experts to Assist Social Security on Disability Issues. She earned her B.A. at K in health sciences and her master’s degree in public health from the University of Michigan. She earned her medical degree from Michigan State University and a Ph.D. from the University of California at San Francisco. Amy came to Pittsburgh in 2012 from UCSF Children’s Hospital in San Francisco, where she was medical director of pediatric rehabilitation. She also completed a combined residency in pediatrics and physical medicine at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in 2005.

Teju Cole ’96

Teju is one of 16 finalists for the 2015 PEN Open Book Award. He was nominated for his book Every Day is for the Thief (Random House). The award confers a $5,000 prize and will be announced at the 2015 PEN Literary Awards Ceremony on June 8.

Counsuelo Hernandez Mainier ’96

Counsuelo and her husband, Stéphane, announce the birth of their son. Étienne (see photo at left) was born on February 4, 2015, in Houston Texas. Consuelo earned her bachelor’s degree in mathematics and studied abroad in Tokyo, Japan.

Michael Frost ’97

Mike has joined the board of directors of Sturgis Bancorp, Inc. in Sturgis, Michigan. Mike is president of LTI Printing in Sturgis and also serves on the boards for the Sturgis Area Community Foundation and Sturgis Area Business/Education Alliance. After earning his B.A. degree in economics from Kalamazoo College, Mike earned an M.B.A. degree from Washington University in St. Louis where he received the Charles F. Knight Award for being in the top 10 in the graduating class based on academic performance. He lives in Sturgis with his wife and four children.

Mary Helen Diegel ’97

Mary Helen is an award-winning teacher in the Livonia (Michigan) Public Schools. She and two colleagues are planning a trip to the House of Hope Orphanage in Montrois, Haiti. They will bring and distribute school supplies, clothes, and shoes to the children there. The three also will guide enrichment camps focusing on sports, art, and dance. Their work expands a program that previously resulted in the provision of four goats for the village, used to supply milk and cheese to the community.

Robb Dunn ’97

Rob gave an interview on WUNC 91.5, North Carolina Public Radio, on May 18. He talked with radio host Frank Stasio about science in general and Rob’s latest book, The Man Who Touched His Own Heart. An article on Rob will appear in the December issue of LuxEsto.

Marin Heinritz ’99

Marin is interviewed in the Collagist. Marin teaches journalism and creative writing at K, and two of her essays–”Out of Body” and “Since you’ve been gone“–appeared in the Collagist. In the interview Marin talks about writing, trauma, the second person voice, and retreating into contemplation.

Jesse Paquette ’99

Jesse married Ida Rødseth Kjosås on July 13, 2014. The couple resides in Brussels, Belgium, and San Francisco, California. Jessie is the chief scientific officer and co-founder of tagb.io. He earned his bachelor’s degree in biology. Ida is an officer for the European Free Trade Association Surveillance Authority.

Sarah Ovink ’00

Sarah has won a 2015 National Science Foundation Faculty Early Development (CAREER) Award to study how race/ethnicity, gender, and family income are linked to career success in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The CAREER Award provides multi-year support for especially promising junior faculty members. Sarah is an assistant professor of sociology at Virginia Tech (Blacksburg). A key component of her research will be interviews with more than 100 undergraduate students in STEM and non-STEM majors at Virginia Tech and focus groups with peer interviewers. Over the next five years, Sarah and a team of graduate and undergraduate research assistants will follow up with these students as they complete their degrees and begin their careers. The grant is expected to total $453,359 over the five years. Sarah’s scholarly interests have primarily focused on educational inequality by race and gender using qualitative and quantitative methods of inquiry. Other research interests include immigration, Latino/Latina populations, and undocumented students.

She recently published an article in the journal Gender & Society that examines trends in Latinos’/Latinas’ postsecondary pathways and life course decisions over a two-year period. She is completing work on a book titled Race, Class, and Choice in Latino/a Higher Education: Pathways in the College-for-All Era under contract with Palgrave Macmillan.

LaNesha (McCoy) DeBardelaben ’02

LaNesha is the vice president of assessment and community engagement at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. She engages the museum in substantive community collaborations and initiatives, and she is leading its effort to gain national accreditation. LaNeesha also supervises the museum’s education department. She has served on the board of directors of the Michigan Council for History Education. Her honors include a 2014 Crain Detroit Business “40 Under 40″ Award. LaNesha has a passion for public history, culture and the arts, literacy, and education, and she fosters museum programming around these critical areas of impact. She also serves as president of the Detroit Pierians, Inc., a national black women’s arts society. At K she earned her B.A. in history and studied abroad in Kenya. She holds a master’s degree from the University of Missouri and a Master of Library Sciences degree from Indiana University-Bloomington. She is pursuing a Ph.D. at Michigan State University.

Thomas Coke ’02

Thomas works at CrowdFund Connect as the director of compliance services and head of business development. In addition to his work at CFC he also advises start ups in the Midwest. He speaks around the Midwest on crowdfunding, mobile payments, and the issues around payments. In addition, Thomas has provided assistance with crowdfunding bills in Michigan, Indiana and Wisconsin. At K he earned his bachelor’s degree in economics; he earned his law degree at Michigan State University. Thomas splits his time between Michigan and Chicago. Recently, he was appointed to a Michigan commission to assist nonprofits as well as low income and under served businesses with crowdfunding. This effort is supported by a grant from the State Bar of Michigan.

Christine Ritok ’03

Christine is an associate curator at Historic Deerfield (Deerfield, Massachusetts). She is responsible for managing, studying, and interpreting the museum’s extensive collection of period furniture and for developing exhibits. Her first museum job, at the National Design Museum in New York City, gave her the opportunity to study the decorative arts in depth, working with old furniture and ceramics. She went on to obtain a master’s degree in the history of design and decorative arts from Parsons New School For Design in New York and began working at the Museum of the City of New York in 2010, where she undertook a complete study of the institution’s vast furniture collection to bring the associated scholarship up to date. She earned her bachelor’s degree in history and studied abroad in Strasbourg, France. Historic Deerfield is an authentic 18th-century New England village in the Connecticut River Valley of Massachusetts. It’s a museum of history, art, and architecture along a mile-long street laid out in 1671 and still lined with 18th- and 19th-century houses on their original sites.

Sean Mann ’03

Sean is a co-owner of the soccer team called the Detroit City Football Club, which is looking to get “bigger,” so to speak. The team intends to transition from a fourth-tier semipro team to a higher-level professional club at the end of this season. That might even mean a soccer-specific stadium in Detroit. The goal is to be in the 24-team United Soccer League or the 11-team North American Soccer League in 2016. Sean lives in southwest Detroit and works as a government affairs representative for Michigan Legislative Consultants. At K, Sean majored in physics and studied abroad in Athens, Greece.

Jessie Wagner ’04

Jessie has a new job. She is associate program manager for medical education at Stryker Corporation.

Drew Brockington ’04

The publisher Little, Brown has acquired rights Drew’s Cat-Stronauts: Mission Moon, a graphic novel aimed at chapter book readers. The story follows the space adventures of a team of cat astronauts as they race to the moon to solve a global energy crisis. Cat-Stronauts is Drew’s debut as an illustrator, and it’s the first of a four-book deal. It will publish in spring of 2017. Drew earned his B.A. at K in art and art history, and he studied abroad in Rome, Italy.

Ryan Biziorek ’04, LEED AP, CTS

Ryan leads the acoustics, audiovisual, and theatre consulting practice at Arup, a multidisciplinary engineering and consulting firm. Ryan works in the company’s Chicago office. At K, he majored in physics and economics. He earned a master’s degree in sound and vibration studies from the University of Southampton. Since joining Arup in 2005, Ryan has been involved in providing technical expertise and project management skills for various building types. He is an active proponent of performance-based design, constantly evaluating the prescribed criteria and standards for different facilities whose users’ needs and requirements are incorporated into the project. He strives to implement integrated acoustic and audiovisual solutions into the design using innovative tools and techniques. Some of his projects include the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center in Athens, Greece; the St. Louis Art Museum Expansion in St. Louis, Missouri; and the public address system redesign for the O’Hare International Airport in Chicago, Illinois.

Julia (Morillo) Fredrickson ’05

Maia Victoria Fredrickson

Julia and her husband, Kyle Fredrickson ’00, welcomed their daughter Maia Victoria Fredrickson on January 7, 2015. Julia does marketing and community management for Disney Interactive and loves being surrounded by Marvel and Star Wars characters as part of her daily job. Kyle is a commercial property manager and enjoys bike riding around the Bay Area on his time off. They have been living in California for three years, and they love it, especially the weather in winter and not having to shovel their car out of piles of snow.

David Hackman ’05

David married Carly Katz on July 5, 2014. David earned his bachelor’s degree at K in religion. He studied abroad in Oaxaca, Mexico. He works as an account executive for Grassroots Campaigns in New York City. The couple lives in Brooklyn.

Dan Blustein ’06

Dan is the subject of “Member Spotlight” for the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The article (by Laura Petersen) is titled “Dan Blustein journeys from marine biology to Hollywood and back again,” and it’s a good read, chronicling his interesting forays in the saga explicit in the title–though “back again” might more accurately refer to “marine robotics” rather than marine biology. Of particular note is the reference to Dan’s opportunities in K’s externship program. Those two experiences, one with octopi at the Seattle Aquarium and the other job-shadowing a physician, helped clarify what he wanted to do. Of course the article showcases that Dan’s path has been more spiral than straight line. How cool (and liberal arts!) is that.

Zachary Norman ’07

Zachary has accepted a position as Research Associate in Photography at the University of Notre Dame. He earned his bachelor’s degree in art at K and studied abroad in Nairobi, Kenya. He did his graduate studies at Indiana University and recently presented work on the concept of plenoptics at a national conference in New Orleans. He’ll begin work at Notre Dame on August 1.

Jacob Meyers ’08

Jacob recently completed his Ph.D. at Colorado State University. He has been conducting research on new approaches to control disease-carrying mosquitoes. His research was described in a paper–”Mosquitocidal properties of IgG targeting the glutamate-gated chloride channel in three mosquito disease vectors (Diptera: Culicidae)”–that was published in the May issue of Journal for Experimental Biology. And his paper was highlighted as the “Editor’s Choice” for that issue of the journal. Despite the fact that malaria mortality rates have fallen steadily since 2000, the disease threatens half the human population and kills one child every minute. Moreover, resistance in mosquitoes to the primary pesticide used to control them is increasing. A new mosquitocidal candidate has arisen in an old drug, ivermectin, which has been successfully used against parasitic worms that cause diseases such as onchocerciasis (River Blindness). However, little was known about the process by which ivermectin worked against mosquitoes. Jacob’s research elucidated the site (called the glutamate-gated chloride channel, part of the insect’s nervous system) and the mechanism of action at that site which were responsible for ivermectin’s effectiveness. Based on what was learned from that discovery, Jacob tested a new strategy, essentially substituting for ivermectin an antibody to the glutamate gated chloride channel. His preliminary tests confirmed the antibody insecticide’s effectiveness against the mosquito that transmits malaria. In two other disease-carrying mosquitoes (yellow fever and West Nile virus) the antibody did not pass across the gut, which prevented any insecticidal effect. The next step is to immunize cattle with the antibody. Cattle are a major source of blood meals for mosquitoes. It is hoped that malaria-bearing mosquitoes that consume cattle blood carrying the toxic antibodies during the malaria parasite’s incubation period would die, disrupting transmission of the disease. A new antibody insecticide may offer hope for a malaria-free future.

Jacob is married to classmate Alyssa Brayshaw ’08. This year Alyssa was awarded a prestigious National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship to support her doctoral work. She will begin work in the fall on her Ph.D. at Texas A&M University. She plans to focus her research in the field of wildlife disease ecology, concentrating on Chagus Disease, which threatens to cross the Texas-Mexico border. Jacob was offered and accepted a post-doctoral position at Texas A&M in the lab of a population geneticist studying mosquito populations on Bioko Island and other field sites in West Africa. Jacob majored in chemistry at K. Alyssa majored in biology and studied abroad in Nairobi, Kenya.

 

Justine Zingsheim ’09, D.V.M.

Justine joined Glenpark Animal Hospital in Muskegon, Michigan, last summer. At K she majored in biology and studied abroad in Aberdeen, Scotland. She earned her degree in veterinary medicine from Michigan State University and graduated in May of 2013. After graduating from veterinary school Justine completed a one-year small animal rotating internship at BluePearl Veterinary Partners in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Although she enjoys all aspects of medicine, Justine takes particular interest in internal medicine (respiratory and endocrine disorders) as well as neurology and ophthalmology. She has two furry children of her own at home, a three-year-old American Bulldog named Lucy and a one-year-old French Bulldog named Lola. In her spare time she enjoys running, particularly in races and triathlons, as well as camping, rock climbing, and baking.

Andrew Carroll ’09

Andrew is the founder of Sweetology Dessert Shop (“The Science of Delicious Desserts”) and supplies a wonderful bio on the firm’s website: It reads: “I’ve always had a sweet tooth. Given the choice, I’m always drawn to the sweet over savory. If I could eat desserts 3 meals a day, I would be one very happy man. As a kid I could always be found in the kitchen when my Mom was baking, waiting to fight off my sister Kelly for the first crack at licking a beater or stealing cookie dough. Things didn’t change as I grew up, and my affinity for desserts only heightened. After completing my bachelor’s degree in chemistry and biochemistry from Kalamazoo College, I bummed around awhile not quite sure what to do with my life. Then came the answer in the form of a neighborhood bakery in Rocky River, Ohio. I spent years there learning and cultivating the professional side of what had always been a beloved hobby. It perfectly married my love of science and my love of confections. In 2014 I experimented with my first handcrafted marshmallow, and it was love at first taste. Since that time, I have devoted all of my time and energy to perfecting my craft. Constant innovation, experimentation and commitment to quality ingredients and flavors drives me. Being able to make others happy through my creations, well that is just the icing on the cake.”

 

Katharine Hoeksema ’09

Katharine joined the Associated Petroleum Industries of Michigan as a legislative assistant. Prior to taking that position she was the natural resources, tourism, and environmental policy adviser and associate legal counsel in the Michigan’s House Republican Policy Office. Katharine earned her B.A. in psychology at K and studied abroad in Madrid, Spain. She earned her law degree from Vermont Law School.

Thomas Riegel ’09

Thomas received Virginia Tech’s 2015 Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine Outstanding Senior Award, which recognizes exceptional academic achievement and leadership by a graduating senior. Thomas received his D.V.M. degree in May. At K he earned his bachelor’s degree in biology. He also earned a minor in Chinese and did his study abroad in Beijing, China. At VMCVM he was a member of the Gamma Sigma Delta Agriculture Honor Society, received the Robert C. Brown Career Life Sciences Award in Leadership (2013 and 2014), and served as a research assistant, student member on the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine dean’s search committee, and as a student interviewer for the college’s class of 2018 applicants.

Sarah Allexan ’11

Sarah is engaged to Caleb Kline ’13. The couple will wed in September of this year. You can reach Caleb at cjkline18@gmail.com.

Genevieve Leet ’11

Genevieve is a graduate student at the University of Michigan’s School of Natural Resources & Environment. She’s working on a dual-track master’s degree in both “Behavior, Education, and Communication” and “Conservation Ecology.” Her new job as curator’s assistant at the Art and Environment Gallery gives her a chance to exercise her passion for painting and the outdoors.

 

Michelle Gigowski ’11

Michelle is an instructor for Appraisal University, an online continuing education service for real estate appraisers. She also works with Value It Press, a publishing house in Portage, Michigan. Michelle, who majored at K in biology and business, writes and consults in health care administration, valuation practices, and entrepreneurship. Kalamazoo College Associate Professor of Economics and Business Timothy Moffit ’80, Ph.D., is also an Appraisal University instructor.

Cody Musselman ’11

Cody graduated from Harvard Divinity School in May with a Master of Theological studies degree. At K she majored in religion and studied abroad in Chiang Mai, Thailand. At Harvard her academic focus was on American religious history with special interests in 20th- and 21st-century religious phenomena. She plans to pursue her doctorate in American religious history at Yale University.

Britta Siefert ’12

Britta is a Peace Corps Volunteer in Kyrgyzstan. “I thought of LuxEsto last month,” she wrote in January, “when my new host brother was born. His name, Nurbolot, means ’There will be light’ in Kyrgyz.” Winters are pretty cold in Kyrgyzstan: “I spend much of my day huddled around my space heater,” added Britta. Britta wrote an article about her experiences that appears in the this issue of BeLight.

Megan Garn ’12

Megan is a rural education associate in Denver, Colorado, with Community Resource Center, a nonprofit organization that creates opportunities, tools, and strategies to develop other nonprofits and community groups throughout Colorado. Megan grew up in the suburbs of Denver; she earned her bachelor’s degree from K in art and art history and studied abroad in Caceres, Spain. She is currently working towards her master’s degree in public administration at the University of Colorado at Denver. She also serves as a board member for Perspective: Cherry Arts Young Professional Board. Megan hopes to someday combine her passion for the arts and social justice. When not in the office, she enjoys being outside in any capacity, whether that be hiking, camping, rock climbing, ice climbing, snowshoeing, or skiing, and of course she loves going to all the art museums and shows in Denver.

Phoebe Solomon ’13

Phoebe is taking the leap from theatrical stage management to digital marketing and public relations. She is a coordinator at Rappid VFX, LLC, in Los Angeles. She’s also enrolled in a social media marketing class at Emerson College’s Los Angeles campus.

Allison Tinsey ’14

Allison is working on applying to law school and eventually pursuing a career in advocacy. In the meantime she works as a legislative intern for Michigan State Senator Steve Bieda. She is also a teaching assistant at Grand Ledge (Mich.) Public Schools, and she does some freelance editing as well.

Daniel Herrick ’14

Daniel is an account executive in the Detroit office of Truscott Rossman, a strategic communications firm serving clients throughout Michigan. Dan was an intern at Truscott Rossman and quickly gained a reputation for his outstanding writing skills. He earned his B.A. degree in economics at K and participated in the New York Arts Program through K’s membership in the Great Lakes Colleges Association.

Tom Rice, Professor of Art

Tom had a solo exhibition titled “Monuments to the Ephemeral” at the Firehouse Art center in Longmont, Colorado. The exhibit opened April 22 and ran through May 25. The exhibit comprised several large ink drawings on transparent plastic that explore ideas related to the effects of climate change on the environment. Tom wrote, “As early as the 19th century, American landscape painters of the Hudson River Valley School realized that the natural resources of the Americas were under assault by industrialization. Their work idealized the pristine landscape of the Americas in order to preserve and glorify its grandeur. My work references these paintings with a renewed alarm at the effect of climate change and the fragility of the environment. Monuments to the Ephemeral speaks to environmental concerns through the futile attempt to immortalize disappearing geological features in images that are even more fragile and ephemeral. Comprised of transparent plastic and ink, these drawings have a fairly short life span. In the gallery, they hang loosely against the wall and sway with any gentle breeze caused by the movement of our human bodies. To personalize the drawings, each piece also includes an excerpt from a love letter. Like the environment, love is ephemeral and can be nurtured or easily destroyed. Both subjects confront issues associated with loss.”

Brian Dietz, Assistant Dean of Students

Brian is one of 28 higher education administrators nationwide selected by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) to participate in a year-long Senior Leadership Academy. Brian will participate in two seminars, one in Baltimore, Maryland, November 6–8, 2015, and one in Washington, D.C., June 23–25, 2016. He also will undertake a mentoring program, work with experts, participate in webinars, and engage in a series of readings and case studies during the 2015–2016 academic year. The Academy is designed to prepare prospective leaders to assume positions as the chief officers in any division—including academic affairs, student affairs, finance, enrollment management, and advancement—in independent higher education. Brian was the only participant chosen from an institution in the state of Michigan.

Gail Griffin, Professor Emerita of English

Gail joined two other Kalamazoo writers in a recent issue of the journal Quarter Past Eight. It was the first time that longtime colleagues and fellow writers Gail and Di Seuss ’78 appeared in print together. Di is Writer-in-Residence and a professor in the English department. The two colleagues were joined in print by Hadley Moore ’99, a short story of whose appeared in that issue of the journal. Di’s piece won the journal’s Short Prose Contest. Gail’s two pieces were both finalists.

In other “English” news, Gail may have retired, but she keeps a close eye on K graduates in the arts. She sent us the following note:

Lisa Kron ’83 is almost sure to win the Tony Award for the book associated with the Broadway hit Fun Home, and possibly share the Tony for lyrics as well. Joe Tracz ’04 was just nominated for a Lucille Lortel Award (off-Broadway) for the musical The Lightning Thief. David France ’81, of course, received an Oscar nomination for his documentary film How to Survive a Plague, and it’s being turned into a series on F/X. It’s interesting to me that Lisa was a theatre arts major, Joe an English major, and David a political science major. And then there’s Jordan Klepper ’01 (a math major!) of The Daily Show fame and Steven Yeun ’05 (psychology) who plays Glen on the The Walking Dead. What a crop of media stars from K! And the breadth of their liberal arts journeys is incredible.”