Alumni Notes


Since retiring, Will Shapira (B.A. '58 ) is an active volunteer for a number of organizations. He tutors K-6 students for the Volunteers of America/Experience Corps- Minnesota and writes for the newsletters of Minnesota Chapter 27 and the national Veterans for Peace organizations. He also writes for The Mississippi Rag: The Voice of Traditional Jazz and Ragtime, a 33- year-old publication published by his wife, Leslie Carole Johnson (B.A. '64). Shapira also coordinates periodic reunions of Minnesota Daily staffers from the 1950s with fellow Daily alum Jim Fuller.


Ross Klatte (B.A. '61 ) worked for Selkirk College, in British Columbia, Canada, until retiring in 1998. He has since written a memoir called Leaving the Farm, forthcoming in 2007 from Oolichan Books.

Evelyn Hovda Anderson (B.A. '64 ) is coordinator of the Minnesota Disability Health Project at the Minnesota Department of Health. She puts her j-school training to use in her other career as unpaid editor and publicist for her husband John (pen name: Raymond John), a University of Minnesota historian who wrote The Cellini Masterpiece, a mystery-thriller set in Malta. The Andersons' promotional travels have taken them to Malta, Great Britain, Canada, and many U.S. cities. They have an adult son and daughter.

Gerald Taft (B.A. '64 ) is currently working as a substitute teacher in Achorage, Alaska's secondary school system. Taft retired from the United States Air Force in 1984 and from the working for the state of Alaska in 1997.

Michael H. Anderson (B.A. '68 , M.A. '74 ) is the new counselor for public affairs for the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia. He previously served the U.S. Department of State as public affairs officer for the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi, India. Anderson was editor of the Minnesota Daily from 1967-68.

Tom DeFrank (M.A.'68 ) was the recipient of the nineteenth annual Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency. The prize, which is awarded by the Gerald R. Ford Foundation, was presented to DeFrank by Vice President Dick Cheney at a National Press Club luncheon on June 19th, 2006. DeFrank was selected for the prize for the diligence of his reporting, his insight into significant changes emerging in President George W. Bush's second term, and the clarity and brevity of his writing."DeFrank's coverage of the White House demonstrated a particularly keen perception of relationships among principals and how these relationships influenced offical policy," the Ford Foundation said in a press release about DeFrank's award. "Considered as a whole, DeFrank's work exemplified the excellence in journalism that brings greater public understanding of the modern American Presidency."


Tom Newcomb (B.A. '72 ) retired from the White House in 2005 as a special assistant to the president for national security affairs. After a teaching stint at Harvard, he is now in Ohio teaching at Tiffin University.

Scott J. Papillon (B.A. '74 ) is a senior public relations manager for Medtronic's vascular division located in Santa Rosa, Calif. His first novel, Screeching Halt, was published in 2004.

Jerome Grohousky ('75 ) and his wife Naomi live in West Lakeland, Minn., and co-own and operate JPG's Associates, Inc., a Twin Cities-based technical publication staffing and production firm.

Molly Wigand (B.A. '76 ) has returned to Hallmark Cards as a a staff writer after fifteen years as a freelancer an n all the company's products, specializing in children's and humor, and manages Hallmark's copy approval process. Her latest children's book, The Snow Must Go On!, was featured as the 2006 holiday promotion in Hallmark Gold Crown stores across the United States.


Joel Rippel (B.A. '80) is a news assistant in the sprots department of the Star Tribune. His second book, Minnesota Sports Almanac, was published in October 2006 by the Minnesota Historical Society. He is currently working on a history of University of Minnesota football.

Karen Kloser (B.A. '84 ) is the program associate for the Institute for New Media Studies in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota. She lives in St. Paul.

Laurie Bauer (B.A. '87 ) was recently promoted to senior director of public relations and communications for Carlson Hotels Worldwide in Minneapolis. In the newlycreated position, Bauer is responsible for leading the company's public relations and corporate communications initiatives.

Dan Lien (B.A. '89 ) received his Masters in Public Health degree from the University of Alaska-Anchorage. He is currently a district manager with Glaxo Smith Kline Pharmaceuticals in Alaska.


Trish Marx (M.A. '90) has sold three nonfiction books of photoessays about China to Abrams Books, Charlesbridge, and Lee & Low Books. Marx writes for middleschoolers. Her latest book is entitled 24 WINTER 2007 Jeannette Rankin, First Lady of Congress (Simon & Schuster, 2006). She has a book coming out in 2007 from Lee & Low about Palestinian and Jewish children living in Israel.

Kasisomayajula (Vish) Viswanath (Ph.D. '90) is an associate professor of society, human development, and health at Harvard University's School of Public Health. Viswanath was instrumental in designing and launching the School's Health Communication Concentration, announced in October 2006. The new program will train students to apply rigorous, theory-based mentods to health and risk communication and to apply and evaluate health communication technologies. "We have a growing understanding of fundamental biological processes and of the social determinants of health, which is unfolding against a backdrop of new communications tools," says Viswanath in explaining the concept behind the new program. "The challenge is to connect those two revolutions--to translate knowledge to the public so that they can change their behaviors to lead healthier lives."

Mary (Sutton) Andrews (B.A. '95 ) owns Seattle Sutton's Healthy Eating, a Maple Grove, Minn. franchise.

Kathryn Bracho (B.A. '98 ) was recently promoted to weekday morning anchor at WBAY-TV in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Bracho has been at WBAY for three years; Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and KCCO-TV in Alexandria, Minnesota.

Jaime (Cegla) Hunt (B.A. '99 ) was recently honored for her work on Northwestern Naturally, the alumni magazine she edits for Northwestern Health Sciences University in Bloomington, Minn. The magazine was named "Most Improved Alumni Magazine" by the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education. Hunt also recently received a Gold Award from the Health Information Resource Center for Consumer Decision-Making Materials for the Natural News Service, a public-information service she manages at NHSU.

Matthew Schwarz (B.A. '99 ) is the managing supervisor for Fleishman-Hillard in St. Paul. He has been with the agency since 2003, having worked in Silicon Valley for several years prior.


Ryan Doyle (B.A. '00) is the director of bussiness development at the Onion.

John Robert Carter (B.A. '01) lives in Newton, Mass. In 2006, he was promoted to manager of televesion production for the Boston Red Sox.

Qimei Chen (Ph.D. '01) is the recently appointed chair of the department of marketing and an associate professor of marketing in the Shidler College of Business at the University of Hawaii-Manoa. Her research, which focuses on interactive advertising, e-commerce, online and crosscultural consumer behavior, is widely cited both nationally and internationally and has appeared in the top refereed journals in the field, including Journal of Retailing, Journal of Advertising, and Journal of Advertising Research.

Rick Katz (B.A. '01) is the editor-in-chief and co-founder of Ambassador Abroad, a newspaper for high school classrooms dedicated to introducing students to world cultures. Katz lives in Maplewood, Minn.

Gregg Aamot (M.A. '02) is the author of The New Minnesotans: Stories of Immigrants and Refugees, released by Syren Book Co. in September 2007. Aamot, who was the editor of The Minnesota Daily in 1996-97, is a reporter for the Associated Press and has covered issues of immigration for the AP and various Minnesota newspapers since the early 1990s. In The New Minnesotans, Aamot looks at the challenges immigrants and refugees face while assimilating to the Upper Midwest and shows how the last major wave of immigrants--mostly Europeans--faced similar challenges. Aamot, a native of Willmar, Minn., lives in the Twin Cities.

Jason Sprenger (B.A. '02) lives in Apple Valley, Minn., and is a senior account representative at Tunheim Partners in Bloomington, Minn.

Alison Dunning (B.A. '02) was recently promoted to a senior associate at Exponent Public Relations in Minneapolis. Her clients include Aveda, IDEXX, and Pillsbury. Dunning joined the agency in 2004 from Target Corp., where she handled media relations.

Fang Wan (Ph.D. '02) is an assistant professor of marketing at the University of Manitoba. Wan's main research interest is information processing and persuasion in both online and offline environments. Her research interests also include the role of social influence in online consumer decision makings and the cognitive approach to media and advertising impact. She was recently voted "hottest new professor on campus."

Sanjay Asthana (Ph.D. '03) is an assistant professor in the College of Mass Communication at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, Tenn. Asthana recently completed a manuscript on inno-vative use and youth participation in media for UNESCO in Paris. The manuscript will also be published in book form.

Danny Olson (B.A. '03) was recently promoted to a senior account executive at Strother Communications, in Minneapolis. Olson lives in Eden Prairie, Minn.

Annette Righi (B.A. '03) was recently hired by Harley-Davidson Financial Services in Chicago as a corporate communications specialist.

Ryan Schaber (B.A. '03) lives in Milwaukee and is an associate producer with Fox Sports Net North. He produces pregame shows for the Brewers and Bucks, and also produces live events for the Brewers, Bucks, and University of Wisconsin hockey.

Rachel Remele (B.A. '04) is a news producer at WTVC in Chattanooga, Tenn. Previously, she was a producer at KBJR in Duluth, Minn.

Rachel R. Anderson (B.A. '05) is the customer service supervisor for Augsburg Fortress Publishers, a publishing company located in Minneapolis.

Ali Bleckinger (B. A. '05) works for True North Companies, an insurance and financial strategies company, in sales and financial services. She lives in Walford, Iowa.

Meaghan Boylen Carpenter (B.A. '05) works for for Weber Shandwick in Bloomington, Minn. Carpenter began at the agency as an intern in 2005 and has since been promoted to assistant account executive and is now an account executive. Carpenter works on youth and cause marketing for the agency, including the sports and non-profit industries.

Jennifer Delzer (B.A. '05) is a visitor relations assistant for the Minnesota Historical Society in St. Paul. She lives in Lakeville, Minn.

Michael Kroll (B.A. '05) lives in Glendale, Calif., and is an editor, producer, and director for Sixteen-Eleven Productions, an entertainment production company.

Michael Douglas Larsen (B.A. '05) works at Trinity Lutheran Church in New Ulm, Minn., as the youth director.

Meghan Lee (B.A. '05) is a staff reporter for the Lillie Suburban Newspapers in New Brighton, Minn.

Kevin Morales (B.A. '05) recently accepted a position as assistant sports editor for the Unified Newspaper Group in Madison, Wisc.

Conor Noonan (B.A. '05) currently works as a network account manager for, a telecommunications company located in the Twin Cities. Conor lives in Minneapolis.

Annie Picken (B.A. '05) is a project manager for Arstone Technologies, Inc., a web development business. She lives in Falcon Heights, Minn.

Mavis I. Richardson (Ph.D. '05) is an assistant professor at Minnesota State University, Mankato in the department of mass communications.

Bryant Switzky (B.A. '05) is a researcher for the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.

Rowena Vergara (B.A. '05) served as an intern at the Green Bay Press-Gazette through the Chips Quinn Scholars Program after graduating in May 2005. Since October 2005, she has been covering retail and consumer trends for the business section of the Rockford Register Star. The Register Star is a 70,000 circulation Gannett newspaper located in Rockford, Ill., about an hour away from Chicago.

Andrew Wig (B.A. '05) is a field sales representative for Buckeye International Inc., a cleaning and maintenance product manufacturing/distribution business.

Kevin Ahlstrand (B.A. '06) is the associate contact planner for Colle and McVoy, an advertising agency located in Minneapolis. Kevin lives in Minnetonka, Minn.

Carolyn Ahlstrom (B.A. '06) lives in Boulder, Colorado and recently took a position with advertising agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky's Boulder office as a cognitive and cultural studies coordinator.

Dana Akerson (B.A. '06) is the corporate communications program coordinator for Pediatric Home Service, a home health care company in Roseville, Minn., for children with respiratory and infusion needs.

Chris Arnst (B.A. '06) works for Wells Fargo Business Credit as a communications associate in Minneapolis.

Paul Barrett (B.A. '06) is a district manager for the ALDI grocery store chain. He currently lives in Minneapolis.

Sarah Bauer (B.A. '06) has been named interim director of the Minnesota News Council. Bauer took over leadership of the Council on December 1, 2006 for Gary Gilson, who retired after 14 years as executive director. Bauer will lead the council while it searches for a permanent successor for Gilson. The Minnesota News Council is a nonprofit agency started in 1970 to promote fair and ethical journalism and to help the public hold news outlets responsible. It facilitates public hearings and forums on complaints against news outlets and issues concerning media ethics.Bauer started as an intern with the council and became operations manager while still a student in the SJMC. She also served as president of the student chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) in 2005-06 and now is on the board of directors for SPJ's professional chapter.

Jennifer Bellefeuille (B.A. '06) is the copy editor and page designer for the Eau Claire Press Company in Eau Claire, Wisc.

Erin Bikers (B.A. '06) is the advertising, marketing, and promotions manager for Bootleggers, a night club restaurant and bar located in Minneapolis.

Nicole Brubaker (B.A. '06) is the assistant media strategist for OMD Worldwide, a media agency in Los Angeles.

Erin Lynn Byrne (B.A. '06) lives in Huntsville, Alabama and works for WRSA radio, as the afternoon traffic reporter and promotions assistant.

Anne Christensen (B.A. '06) lives in Norlina, N.C. She is a teacher in the Norlina public school system with Teach For America, a nonprofit organization.

Melissa Colgan (B.A. '06) is an assistant editor at Minneapolis/St. Paul Magazine and lives in Minneapolis.

Lindsay Danielson (B.A. '06) choreographs and teaches dance at Eden Prairie High School and South Metro Dance Academy in Eden Prairie, Minn.

Matthew DePoint (B.A. '06) is an account representative for Tunheim Partners in Minneapolis.

Jennifer Dill (B.A. '06) currently works with Horizon Media, Inc. in New York as an assistant account executive. Dill lives in Brooklyn.

Christina Doucet (B.A. '06) is a communications specialist for National rbitration Forum, a law arbitration firm located in Minneapolis.

Ayelet Drori (B.A. '06) is a communications fellow for the National Endowment for Financial Education, a nonprofit organization located in Englewood, Colo., that works to promote financial literacy.

Erin Fossum (B.A. '06) is a bartender and lives in Minneapolis.

Kimberly Gengler (B.A. 06) works for Thomson Learning, located in San Francisco, as an editorial assistant. She lives in San Carlos, Calif.

Rick Hammond (B.A. '06) works for Pearson VUE, an electronic testing company, as a marketing intern located in Bloomington, Minn.

Suzy Hart (B.A. '06) works for Larsen Design in Minneapolis as a marketing associate.

Shawn Hogendorf (B.A.'06) is a general news reporter for Prior Lake American newspaper. He lives in West St. Paul, Minn.

Rebecca Hennen (B.A. '06) works as the donor services coordinator for the University of Minnesota athletics department's Golden Gopher Fund. She is also pursuing her M.A. in strategic communication in the SJMC.

Laura Johnson (B.A. '06) works in marketing with the company Music Matters.

Elizabeth A. Klein (B.A. '06) is the general office clerk for Lindquist and Vennum PLLP, a law firm located in Minneapolis. Elizabeth currently lives in Woodbury,

Karie Kocheuar (B.A. '06) is the administrative assistant-travel for Regis Corporation, a hair and beauty company located in Edina, Minn.

Christopher Kuffel (B.A. '06) lives in Singapore and works for Citigroup as a supervisory analyst.

Tom LaSee (B.A. '06) is a marketing intern for Accredited Only, Inc. a marketing company located in Minneapolis.

Shelby Lindrud (B.A. '06) is a staff writer for Renco Publishing, a weekly newspaper in Olivia, Minn.

David Mackereth (B.A. '06) is a junior copywriter for Campbell Mithun in Minneapolis.

Graham Meulemans (B.A. '06) is a customer relations coordinator for Open Systems International, Inc., a software and technology firm. He lives in Minneapolis.

Robert Mews (B.A. '06) is currently working with North Woods Advertising in Minneapolis as an assistant account executive.

Christopher David Miller (B.A. '06) is the client service consultant for Wells Fargo- Institutions Trust

Kathy Moen (B.A. '06) lives in Minneapolis and is an administrative clerk in continuing education for Thomson Prometric.

Jessica Nytes (B .A. '06) works for Campbell Mithun advertising agency as a media analyst. She lives in Minneapolis.

Celest Pape (B.A. '06) works as an operations specialist for Regis Corporation, a beauty salons and operations business.

Emily Patt (B.A. '06) lives in Los Angeles and is an assistant to director of special events for New Line Cinema, an independent film studio.

Kristine (Dietman) Pearson (B.A. '06) is the marketing representative for Cofiroute USA, a transportation solutions company. Pearson lives in New Hope, Minn.

Erin Quirk (B.A. '06) lives in Minneapolis and works as an assistant account manager with Kerker, an advertising agency.

Lisa Ann (Mueller) Reiter (B.A. '06) is the regional director for Clumes, Inc., a vending management and human resource business. Lissa lives in Grosse Pointe, Mich.

Dan Roland (B.A. '06) is an assistant sales manager for T-Mobile and lives in New Brighton, Minn.

Sarah Sneider (B.A. '06) is an insulin pump specialist for Medtronic Mini Med., a medical device company located in Northridge, CA.

Kay Steiger (B.A. '06) is an editorial assistant for The American Prospect, a political magazine headquartered in Washington D.C.

Than Tibbetts (B.A. '06) is a reporter for the Grand Rapids Herald-Review in Grand Rapids, Minn., covering city government and business. He lives in
Hibbing, Minn.

Victoria Trobak (B.A. '06) lives in Indianapolis and works as a chapter consultant for Alpha Chi Omega Fraternity, Inc.

Amanda Whitakre (B.A. '06) is a junior art director for Campbell Mithun in Minneapolis.



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This page contains a single entry by cla published on July 25, 2008 3:17 PM.

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