Class of '70
May 2002

Dear Classmates:

Greetings from your class agents!!  Diane Mickelson Brady is extremely busy with the final planning of her daughter, Colleen’s ’98, June wedding plus serving as executive director of the Volunteer Resource Center in Minneapolis.  Lindy Turner Purdy is close to completing her studies at the United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities, serves as a parish pastor for a church in Elk River, and still manages to operate her business, Varia Enterprises in Hamel, MN.  (She is looking to sell her business―contact her if you’re interested.)  My life is not as crazy as theirs, so I have the privilege of writing this letter.  (We’re always looking for guest writers―contact the Gustavus Alumni Office.)

John (Greupner) and I are suffering from a very empty nest.  Both of our adult kids, Jen and Erik, have settled in southern California this past year.  And the worst of it is that they have taken our grandchildren, Joseph and Julia, with them.  We try to connect every few months, but it’s not the same as when they lived in Minnesota.  We raised our kids to take risks and follow their dreams and that’s just what they’re doing.  I’m sure that some of you who are parents of late teens/adults have experienced the same…  So, we keep busy with our jobs―John is the director of evaluation and assessment for the Wayzata School District, and I work for the City of Plymouth as a special events planner and liaison to the Plymouth Fine Arts Council.  When the weather is nice, we enjoy bicycling, golf and motorcycling.  John just bought a new cruiser for a three-week trip to California this summer.

For these past few months, much of our conversation in Minnesota has revolved around the bizarre weather that we've experienced.  And those of you who live elsewhere can be pretty smug about the fact that you haven’t had to put up with 94-degree weather one day and shovel 4 inches of snow from your driveway two days later.  I just got an email from Paul Thompson with his thoughts and ACTIONS regarding our environment:

“Does this strange weather ever make you think that our planet is trying to tell us something?  Heard a story on MPR the other day and scientists are now estimating that the total number of insect species is down to 5-6 million from an estimated 31 million a few years ago…or that chunks of ice the size of Rhode Island are breaking off of Antarctica because of a warming climate.  At the advanced age of 53, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about what kind of legacy I want to pass along to my son, Christopher, to my second graders (Bancroft Elementary in Minneapolis) and to the next few generations.  Basically being buried in my life of teaching, Master's program in teaching and learning through St. Mary’s, Little League coaching and parenting, I allowed myself Earth Day and Earth Week and our little Earth Festival at Sibley Park and the BIG Living Green Expo at the State Capital ground to jolt me into my activist role of old and to see clearly that once again, THIS IS THE TIME AND WE ARE THE PEOPLE.  …Hope you are all well enjoying this crazy yin yang weather we’re having – it’s just the Earth giving us a wake-up call.  Are we listening???”

Paul is focusing on redefining Earth friendly politics by supporting and promoting Ken Pentel, the Green party candidate for governor.  Thanks, PT, for the reminder that each of us is called to do his/her part in cleaning up our world – environmentally, politically and spiritually – to promote wellbeing and PEACE.

I also enjoyed talking with some of you at Phonorama last week.  Thanks again for your gifts!

Sandy Stephenson Nye’s son, Steve, will graduate from Gustavus this spring!  She and her husband are building a new home in Hermantown, MN to be completed this fall.

Jim Rigos is working for ATT in Boston, but is furthering his education in computer technology to retool for possible career changes in the industry.  Jim would like to get back to Minnesota to visit friends.  I think that calls for another reunion!

George and Stancy (Phillips) Walters live in Eveleth, MN where George works as the financial aid director for the local community college.  Stancy works for Delta Dental in Gilbert, MN.  Their youngest graduates from St. Kate's this spring, but Stancy said she and George are not going to think about retirement for a long time.  They have an active life on the Iron Range!

Jane Arman Williams has been on staff at Concordia College in Moorhead, MN as a financial aid director for many years.  Last year she cut back to a half time commitment so she can spend more time on herself and her family.  Jane’s husband, Duffy, will be ordained as a Deacon this month, and will continue in his studies to become an Episcopal Priest this coming year.

If you have not given to the Gustavus Fund this year, gifts can still be sent to the college before May 31st to be part of the current fiscal year.  Helping students learn and experience a variety of opportunities is the essence of The Gustavus Fund.  Your support is needed and appreciated.  Check out the variety of spring activities at Gustavus on the school’s web site calendar gustavus.edu/news/calendar.

Additional Classmate News

  • Schelly Braden is a realtor with Coldwell Banker Burnet at their Lakes Office in Minneapolis.  She is planning a May 19th wedding in Jamaica to Bryn Vaaler.  Bryn is a staff attorney with Dorsey & Whitney in Minneapolis.
  • Janet Carter lives in Racine, WI where she works for S. C. Johnson & Son, Inc.  She was just promoted to senior regulatory compliance auditor.
  • Jill Conway is a home care provider for the Colorado Department of Human Services.  She lives in Canon City, CO and is working to develop an organization that can find employment for people with special needs.
  • Jane Bader DeStaercke is a high school English teacher for the Gilman Public Schools in Gilman, WI.
  • Gail Linnell Ehlen moved to Louisville, KY, last year when her husband, Jim, took a position with Humana Healthcare.  She is overseeing the construction of their new home, but manages to visit family and friends in Minnesota on a regular basis.
  • Jim Ehrich is the owner and president of Ehrich Seed Farms, Inc. in Elmore, MN.
  • Ron and Patrice Gatzlaff live in Rochester, MN, where Ron is the president of Altura Hardware, Inc. and Patrice is a teacher at the Rainbow School.
  • Mindy Rittenhouse Greiling is currently serving as the lead DFL State Representative on the House Education Finance Committee, and has received a number of awards for her work in the fields of education and mental health advocacy.  She lives in Roseville, MN.
  • Sharon Nelson Gunberg spent the winter in Jackson Hole, WY, planning a property development project (and doing some skiing).
  • Steve Hoffmann of Redondo Beach, CA, writes: “The BAD news is, my beloved 1984 Celica was totaled after an incident with an inattentive truck driver.  The GOOD news is, the insurance more than covered the down payment on a dandy 2002 Honda CR-V with all the trimmin’s.  The BAD news is, before the CR-V even got its license plates, a runaway shopping cart did the door in.  The GOOD news is, the insurance was there again.  (Me?  Oh, I’m a Minnesota Lutheran – cars may be destroyed around me, but I’m fine.)  Hey!  How about some new campus photos on the web site?  I want to see current shots of how the trees are doing!!”
  • Joyce Hempftling Huff teaches in the Apple Valley/Rosemount/Eagan Area Learning Center and lives in Apple Valley, MN.
  • Dan Klein, president and CEO of Klein Financial, Inc., bought another bank and mortgage company in 2000.  His main office is in MN (lives in Excelsior), but his company is licensed in 11 states.  On a personal note, both his son, Matthew, and daughter, Angela, got married last year.
  • Nancy Yard Long lives in Marshall, MN where she is a music therapist at the Wiener Memorial Medical Center.  Her husband, Michael, works for Jim Palmer Trucking Co.  They became first time grandparents when their daughter gave birth to Victoria Hope.  Congratulations!!
  • Chuck Machacek works as an analyst for Compaq Computer Corporation and lives Plano, TX.
  • Jayne Rydland Magnuson is a pre-school teacher at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Burnsville.  Her husband, Stan, passed away last year following an illness.  Three of her children, Heather ’99, Eric ’02 and Luke ’03 are Gusties.
  • Linda Jungck McMahon teaches in the Academy of Travel & Tourism at Washburn High School in Minneapolis.  In addition to that, she served as the meeting planner for the first National Sexual Assault Response Team Training Conference sponsored by the Department of Justice.
  • Bonnie Weckworth Nelson is a second grade teacher in Litchfield, where she and her husband, William live.  Bonnie received her Master’s degree in teaching and learning from St. Mary’s College in Winona last May.
  • Mark Swanson works for Xcel Energy and lives in Red Wing, MN, where his wife, Nancy, works as a secretary/receptionist for the Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College.  Their daughter, Sara, is graduating from Concordia College this spring and son, Sam, attends school in St. Cloud.

Remember to send your news updates to Gustavus, or if you choose, send an email message to alumni@gustavus.edu. 

Peace and Happiness,

Karol Klint Greupner

1970 Co-Class Agent

P. S.  Now for some campus news from written by a current Gustavus student:

Campus News:

Hi!  This is Tracey Hanson ’02 again writing from the Alumni Office.  For those of you who haven’t previously heard from me, I am a senior double majoring in Communication Studies and Business Management.  I am a seasoned Alumni Office veteran, as this is my fourth (and final) year here.  After not having taken a J-Term class, spring semester and the homework it entails has been hitting me hard.  Contrary to popular belief, the “senior slacker” final semester has been just the opposite for me.  My time at Gustavus has flown by, especially this final year.  The fact that it is March and I am still without a job is beginning to be a constant thought in the back of my mind.  It also seems to be a constant thought in the minds of my parents, although it seems closer to the front of theirs!  Spring semester has also been the final opportunity to be all together with classmates, so much time has been spent socially with roommates and friends.

As I will be graduating in June, this will be the final time you receive updates from me.  I now will also move into the alum category and step into the real world.  I’m not sure I’m completely ready for the change, but I’m darn sure that I better get ready because it’ll be here before I know it!  Here is some news from Gustavus.

Interim President Named:

The Board of Trustees of Gustavus announced that it has selected The Reverend Dennis J. Johnson ’60 as the interim president of the College.  The Rev. Johnson succeeds Dr. Axel Steuer, the thirteenth president of the College, who announced January 21st that he was resigning at the end of the current academic year after having served as president for the last 11 years.

In 1985 he accepted the position as Vice President of Church Relations of Gustavus Adolphus College and in 1996 was named Vice President of College Relations.  During his tenure in the College Relations position, he twice served as interim Vice President for Development.  Previously, he served on both the Gustavus Board of Trustees and the Alumni Board.  He retired from Gustavus in 2000.  In the last year, he has served as the Bishop’s Associate for the Minneapolis Area Synod of the ELCA.  Dennis and his wife have two children.

Hello Walk On-line Alumni Community (hellowalk.gustavus.edu) has been launched and Gusties of all ages are invited to join this meeting place for anything from small talk to debate to caring conversations.  Hello Walk at Gustavus is the sidewalk running from Uhler Hall on the north side of campus past the front of Old Main to Pittman Hall on the south side, which, for decades, was the main “artery” and gathering point on campus.  Even though the campus landscape has changed, the spirit of Hello Walk continues with you joining the conversation on the virtual Hello Walk.  Associate professor of political science Chris Gilbert will guest host a discussion on politics for the months of May and June.  Check it out at hellowalk.gustavus.edu

Reunion Weekend for the 50 Year Club and Class of 1952 is May 31 & June 1.  A schedule of events and registration material was sent in April.

The Gustavus Alumni Fund closes May 31 – help us reclaim 50 percent participation and our national recognition for alumni giving.  All gifts, no matter what the size are appreciated.

Homecoming 2002 & All Sports Reunion Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Intercollegiate Athletics is September 21.  Homecoming Weekend will include reunion gatherings for classes of 1957, 1962, 1967, 1972, 1977, 1982, 1987, 1992, 1997 and 2002.  Class reunions will be held in Bloomington at the Radisson South Hotel Friday evening, and Homecoming events including class and all-sports reunion events will return to campus for activities Saturday.  A schedule of events and registration material will be mailed in August.  A schedule will be published in the summer and fall issues of the of the Quarterly.

It was an extremely successful winter sports season at Gustavus. 

Women’s hockey won the MIAC regular season championship with an undefeated record and advanced to the Frozen Four National Tournament, finishing third in the nation. The men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams both won MIAC titles, the first time in Gustavus history.  The women’s Nordic ski team won its first MIAC championship.  Men’s basketball placed second in the MIAC during the regular season and MIAC playoffs, and advanced to the Sweet Sixteen before losing to number one ranked Carthage College.  Men’s hockey finished second in the MIAC regular season and playoffs.  Women’s basketball finished fourth in the MIAC and advanced to the conference playoff for the first time ever. The women’s indoor track team finished second and both the men’s Nordic ski team and men’s indoor track teams placed fourth in MIAC action.  The women’s gymnastics team advanced to the NCGA National Championships.  Five Gustavus coaches were named Coach of the Year in their respective sports – Jon Carlson (women’s swimming & diving), Mike Carroll (women’s hockey), Mickey Haller (women’s basketball), Scott Jerome (women’s Nordic skiing), and Brett Petersen (men’s hockey).

Evelyn Sponberg Young’s 90th birthday celebration

The Twin Cities Chapter of the Alumni Association invites all Gusties and friends of former Gustavus food service director and 2002 Alumni Fund Chair Evelyn Sponberg Young ’33 to her 90th birthday celebration on July 25, 2002 at Mt. Olivet Lutheran Church, 5025 Knox Avenue South, Minneapolis, at 6:30 p.m. with a 7:30 p.m. program.

Evelyn will be serving her famous red velvet cake and all guests will receive a loaf of her famous Swedish rye bread. A book of remembrance will be compiled as a gift for Evelyn.  Please send remembrances and stories of Evelyn to Alumni Office, Gustavus Adolphus College, 800 West College Avenue, St. Peter, MN 56082.  Reservations should be made with the Alumni Office at 800-487-8437, e-mail at alumni@gustavus.edu or visit our web site at gustavus.edu, alumni, events.

NOBEL CONFERENCE® XXXVIII

The Nature of Nurture – The Early Years, will be held on campus October 1 & 2.  The conference will explore the forces that are most important in shaping a child’s personality, gender identity, and language acquisition and learning ability.  History, discoveries, research, and clinical studies will all be surveyed to draw a better understanding of biological forces and environmental influences on brain development.

For more news and information about Gustavus, check out the web site at gustavus.edu.