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Alumni Notes


Margot (Auerbacher) Sigel (B.A. ’44) contributed to the new Encyclopedia of Clothing and Design published by Charles Scribner’s Sons. This year, she was honored to be the subject of a Ph.D. thesis by Barbara Heinemann (Ph.D. ’07, design, housing and apparel). Sigel’s fashion collection is at the University’s Goldstein Museum, where she was the founder of Friends of the Goldstein. She now resides in Flordia, but spends her summers in Minneapolis.

Clayton Kaufman (B.A. ’49) was inducted into the Museum of Broadcasting Hall of Fame on Oct. 27, 2007, honoring his 39-year career at WCCO radio.  He joined the station in 1951 as a newswriter and retired in 1990 after serving as vice president and general manager. The Hall of Fame is co-sponsored by the Minnesota Broadcasters Association and the Pavek Museum of Broadcasting.


Duane A. Rasmussen (B.A. ’51) recently published “CIC—Christ I’m Confused,” a book about his experience as a U.S. Army Counter-Intelligence Corps agent in 1953-54, at the height of the Cold War. The 20 episodes take place in the Canal Zone and Republic of Panama. Information is available at http://www.trafford.com.

John W. Mashek (B.A. ’53) covered politics in Washington for four decades with U.S. News & World Report, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Boston Globe. His primary beats were Congress, the White House and national politics. He covered every presidential election from 1960 to 1996. He was a panelist in three televised presidential debates in 1984, 1988 and 1992. Today, he posts his observations on politics several times a week on his blog, “A Capital View” (http://www.usnews.com/blogs/mashek/). He also teaches part time at Northwestern University’s Medill School graduate program in Washington.

Victoria Harding (B.A. ’65) became a restaurateur in 2006. She co-owns and co-operates, with husband Rick (B.E.E. ’65) and son Ricky, Rivers Wine Bar and Bistro in Grand Rapids, Minn.


David Zunker (B.A. ’76) was named president of the Saratoga State Convention and Tourism Bureau. Previously Zunker was vice president of the Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau in Columbia, S.C.

Julie E. Kendall (B.A. ’76) has been inducted as a Fellow of the Decision Sciences Institute (DSI). Kendall is a professor of management at the Rutgers School of Business, Camden, N.J. She is only the ninth woman to receive this coveted international honor, considered among the highest for scholars in this field. Kendall earned her doctoral degree in organizational communication from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. DSI, which has approximately 3,500 members worldwide, is a cross-disciplinary international professional association dedicated to advancing the science and practice of decision making. 

Larry A. Etkin (M.A. ‘77) is the new communication director for Minnesota’s Perpich Center for Arts Education, Golden Valley, Minn. PCAE is an unusual combination of a residential public high school for the arts, attended by students from across the state, and a research and continuing professional education program for arts teachers across Minnesota. PCAE was created by an act of the Minnesota Legislature in 1984 and is funded as a state agency.


Eric Davis (B.A. ’86) wrote and published the novel “Hopes and Dreams: Stuck on AutoDrive.” He describes the book as being about “inventing the self-driving car, living happily ever after and getting into trouble without really trying.”

Karen J. Wright (B.A. ’87) is operations director at KMSU 89.7 FM radio in Mankato, Minn., where she received the 2006 National Association of Broadcasters Educational Foundation’s Service to America Award—the first awarded to a college radio station.


David D. Perlmutter (Ph.D. ’95) is a professor and associate dean for graduate studies and research at the William Allen White School of Journalism & Mass Communications, University of Kansas. This year saw the publication of his latest book, “Picturing China in the American Press: The Visual Portrayal of Sino-American Relations in Time Magazine, 1949-1973” (Rowman & Littelfield). He became editor of the blog of the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics. He also served on the National Law Enforcement Museum Advisory Committee for its media exhibit.

Amy Jo Deguzis (B.A. ’96) is head of production at Canvas Atelier and works in conjunction with a production company, XOVR. She now lives in Santa Monica, Calif.

Lee Hutton III (B.A. ’99) joined the law firm of Minneapolis-based Lommen, Abdo, Cole, King & Stageberg, P.A., on Oct. 1, 2007. Hutton, who played for the Gophers between 1994 and 1999, brings sports representation of players from the NFL and area coaches to the firm’s growing entertainment practice, plus considerable litigation skills in construction law, products liability, premises liability, advertising law and other areas. Hutton was previously at Johnson & Condon, P.A., in Edina, Minn., where he was an associate attorney in the liability and litigation group.

Jaime (Cegla) Hunt (B.A. ’99) is the associate director of news and public information for the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh.


Emily (Aus) Oz (B.A. ’03) works at WDAY-TV in Fargo, N.D., as the weekend anchor/reporter.

Jensen (Morris) Moore-Copple (M.A. ’03) received her doctorate from the University of Missouri School of Journalism in June 2007. She is currently teaching online courses in quantitative research methods for the university.

Melinda Rogers (B.A. ’03) is a public safety reporter for The Salt Lake Tribune in Salt Lake City, Utah.

James DeLong (B.A. ’04) is pursuing his M.B.A. at the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business. He currently is a development associate at Risen Christ School in Minneapolis, and also serves as an adviser to the Wake student magazine, which he co-founded with fellow University graduate Chris Ruen in 2001 while both were students in the SJMC.

Kristoffer Engebretson (B.A. ’04) is a general assignment reporter at WGBA in Green Bay, Wis.

Linda A. Shudlick (B.A. ’04) works in Golden Valley, Minn., as the producer of the “Sunrise Show” on KARE-11 TV.

Elise Adair (B.A. ’06) works as a development associate for Camp Heartland in Minneapolis.

Marissa C. Anderson (B.A. ’06) is a communications associate and graphic designer for Ramsey County Library in Shoreview, Minn.

SJMC alumna Sarah Bauer (B.A. ’06) has been named executive director of the Minnesota News Council. She served as the organization’s interim director following the retirement of Gary Gilson as executive director in December 2006. Bauer has led the News Council through a 10-month transition period, during which she oversaw the expansion of News Council staff to include a development director. She also worked to update and refine the News Council’s complaint procedures and led an effort that resulted in a significant reduction in the organization’s operating costs. Bauer graduated summa cum laude from the University of Minnesota with degrees in journalism and philosophy. She also serves on the board of directors for the Minnesota professional chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and was recently appointed to SPJ’s national membership committee.

Christian Betancourt (B.A. ’06) is a communications and marketing coordinator for Johnson McCann Benefits, LLC, based in St. Paul, Minn.

Amy Bury (B.A. ’06) works in St. Paul, Minn., as a sales assistant for Sinclair Broadcast Group.

Kelly J. Finco (B.A. ’06) is a senior administrative and communications assistant with Thomson West, based in Eagan, Minn.

Kelly Frush (B.A. ’06) works as an associate editor for Industrial Fabrics Association International, a trade magazine company based in Roseville, Minn.

Sarah B. Howard (B.A. ’06) works as an associate editor at MSP Communications-Mpls.St.Paul Magazine.

Mark Kimitch (B.A. ’06) works as a Web designer at Montage, Inc., based in Roseville, Minn.

Amy Mattson Lauters (Ph.D. ’05) has been awarded a $1.1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to direct a program in college preparation for 50 young people (around age 14) from the Wichita, Kan., area.  As project director, she will soon hire three full-time staff members to work with a diverse population of young people over the next four years.  The objective is to train these young people in professional and communication skills as well as to prepare them for college work in journalism and communication.  The idea behind the grant  is to expand diversity in the communication field by finding and training a diverse population of students who can ultimately contribute further—and potentially multiply the contribution perhaps 50-fold—as professionals in bringing diverse voices, ideas and perspectives to the communication field. While directing the project, Lauters will pursue research that examines the cultural gap between the current generation and the next generation of college students, with particular attention to media use among young people. Lauters, author/editor of “The Rediscovered Writings of Rose Wilder Lane, Literary Journalist” (2007), is an assistant professor in the Elliott School of Communication at Wichita State University, Wichita, Kan.

Yuliya Pruzhanskaya (B.A. ’06) is a project manager for Epic Systems Corporation in Madison, Wis.

Kevin Behr (B.A. ’07) is a police/courts reporter for the Winona Daily News in Winona, Minn.

Kara Betsch (B.A. ’07) is an assistant account executive with Campbell Mithun advertising agency in Minneapolis.

Kathryn Book (B.A. ’07) is an assistant account executive with Space150, an interactive advertising agency in Minneapolis.

Eric Boyles (B.A. ’07) is a newscast producer with KSTP-TV in Minneapolis.

Sycheyann (Johnson) Chase (B.A. ’07) is a human resources recruiting specialist at LSS Data Systems in Eden Prairie, Minn.

Leslie Clark (B.A. ’07) is a corporate communications associate for RBC Dain Rauscher in Minneapolis.

Tiffany Clements (B.A. ’07) is a Web producer for KTUU-TV in Anchorage, Alaska.

Sam Daron (B.A. ’07) is a part-time reporter/stringer for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in Milwaukee.

Jacqueline Dawson (B.A. ’07) is a marketing coordinator with the Marshall Group in Minneapolis.

Nick Frantzen (B.A. ’07) is a video producer/editor for the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx.

Veniamin Frayman (B.A. ’07) is a buyer analyst with Best Buy’s Geek Squad Services in Richfield, Minn.

Maisha Frederickson (B.A. ’07) is a group plan representative with Securian in St. Paul, Minn.

Lindsey J. Heffern (B.A. ’07) is a marketing assistant with the Centers for Public Health Education and Outreach in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota.

Makenzi Henderson (B.A. ’07) is a reporter with KOTA Territory News (KOTA-TV) in Rapid City, S.D.

Vanessa (Gertz) House (B.A. ’07) is a multimedia production intern with the Star Tribune in Minneapolis.

Jennifer Manogue (B.A. ’07) is a public relations account executive at ASI Communications in Minneapolis.

Kevin McCahill (B.A. ’07) is a managing editorial assistant with Simon & Schuster publishing in New York City.

Tom Nemo (B.A. ’07) is a corporate sales manager for the Iowa Stars Professional Hockey team in Des Moines, Iowa.

Kelly O’Connell (B.A. ’07) is a reporter for WRBL in Columbus, Ga.
Alix Olson (B.A. ’07) is a sales assistant with HRP Television in Minneapolis.

Laura Pabst (B.A. ’07) is a reporter for
the Star Tribune in Minneapolis.

Xiaomi Qu (B.A. ’07) is a broadcast assistant at The Martin Agency in Richmond, Va.

Emily Ray (B.A. ’07) is an account coordinator at Cuneo Advertising in Bloomington, Minn.

Donny Rowles (B.A. ’07) is a general assignment reporter at KAAL-TV in Austin, Minn.

Sarah Skarphol (B.A. ’07) works in Orlando, Fla., for Campus Crusade for
Christ, a nonprofit missionary organization.

Sarah E. Sullivan (B.A. ’07) is a sports reporter with WXOW-TV in La Crescent, Minn.

Molly Szarzynski (B.A. ’07) is an advertising traffic coordinator with Metropolitan Media Group in Bloomington, Minn.

Ashley Vaness (B.A. ’07) is an associate interactive producer with the Colle+McVoy advertising agency in Minneapolis.

Amanda Wartgow (B.A. ’07) is an account manager at Global Market Insite, Inc. in Hopkins, Minn.

Anna Weggel (B.A. ‘07) was an intern at Mother Jones magazine in San Francisco last summer. She recently was named assistant producer for the public insight journalism program at Minnesota Public Radio.

Brittany Willborg (B.A. ’07) is a marketing coordinator for Trade Secret, a division of Regis Corporation, based in Edina, Minn.

Andrea Williams (B.A. ’07) is a teacher with Teach for America in Miami-Dade (Fla.) Public Schools.

Tricia Woellert (B.A. ’07) is an account services coordinator with Rippe Kean Marketing in Madison, Wis.