Class of '73
January 1999

Dear Classmates and Friends:

I was reading my January issue of Minnesota Monthly when I came to a page entitled "Leading Minnesota Women Attorneys: Minnesota’s Most Respected Legal Counsel As Selected By Their Peers." I’m not sure why I read down the list; maybe because I haven’t yet written a will yet and I know I should and I sometimes look for names of women attorneys in my area. Anyway, there was Karen Ives. I love it when I come across the name of someone I know. A telephone number was listed, so I gave Karen a call. She’s practicing family law and is also a mediator. Unfortunately, she doesn’t do wills, but she directed me to someone on the list that does.

Speaking of money (that’s why we write wills; to declare who will get our money. Was that too big a stretch?), it’s time to think about completing tax returns. Some of you may be anticipating tax refunds. Good. Send some of it to Gustavus, the school that made you what you are. Some of you may have converted your IRAs to Roth IRAs or may have large capital gains distributions, meaning you’ll probably end-up owing the IRS money. If you’re like me, and you’ve decided that it’s okay to take money from your mutual funds to pay the taxes generated by the distributions on those very funds take a little extra and send a check to Gustavus. I bet lots of us received tuition grants. Even though the grants were "free," wouldn’t it be nice to repay them so more grants can be given? Giving money to Gustavus doesn’t just help Gustavus or some unknown student; it helps you. Sure, you might get a tax deduction, but I’m talking about something more than that. I’m talking about the good feeling you get when you share what you have. I mean the feeling of ownership and commitment and belonging you have when you contribute to something you care about. When I answer phones during Minnesota Public Radio pledge drive, I feel I am MPR. Since sending a check to St. Paul Chamber Orchestra a few years ago to help them balance their budget, and they did, I feel like SPCO is my orchestra. Giving creates a bond. We are Gustavus. Please send a gift.

WHAT OUR CLASSMATES ARE DOING:

  • Patricia Brodin Oen "records books on tape for Minnesota State Services for the Blind, and is a freelance writer, with an article appearing recently (May 1998) in Entertainment Weekly."
  • Kathy Nissen Goodrich lives in Mesa, AZ, where she works for the Scottsdale School District. Husband, Steven, is at Goodrich Law Office.
  • Diane L Dornburg, Des Moines, IA: "I am the assistant director of the Legal Aid Society of Polk County, and the lead attorney in the family law unit. I have three children at home–Nikki 14, Zack 11, and Samantha 8. My husband, Jim Logston, died 1-31-97." From those of us who didn’t previously know of this death, our belated condolences.
  • Greg Quist, Spring, TX: "Still flying as a captain for Southwest Airlines, crew-based in Houston. Also, continue flying customers in Air Combat flying using T-34s at Texas Air Aces in Spring, TX."
  • Marilyn Peavey Meshke, Blooming Prairie, MN: Third grade teacher, Blooming Prairie School Dist. Spouse, Dean, also teaches for Blooming Prairie School. They have two children: Todd is a freshman at Luther and Lisa is a sophomore in high school.
  • Kelvin Miller, Burnsville, MN: In the interest of space (both inner and outer), I’m paraphrasing an article which appeared in the St. Paul Pioneer Press, Dec. 5, 1998. It shouldn’t surprise anyone who knows him that Kelvin has recorded winds from Mars over some works of Bach. Briefly, he assigned sounds to the ebb and flow pattern of the digital weather information. The resulting CD, "Winds of Mars," is available on the Web at www.windsofmars.com. So, now Kelvin has a newly formed subsidiary to his public relations firm called Music Crest Productions. I’m sure we haven’t heard the last of this. Do you think the author of Women are from Venus, Men are from Mars was writing about Kelvin?
  • Pat Scharmer Rood, Duluth, MN: Vice President of the Miller-Dwan Foundation. One of the Foundation’s projects is a new multi-faith spiritual center at the Miller-Dwan Hospital, dovetailing nicely with Pat’s history of creativity, spirituality and service. Daughter, Melissa, attends the University of Wisconsin-Madison; Erika is in high school; son, Charlie, is in 9th grade. In her free time, Pat loves to garden, bike, roller, blade, canoe and camp in the wilderness. When it snows, she enjoys cross-country and downhill skiing.
  • Patricia Witt, Seattle, WA: Has been named "Care Team Director" for Care Team Ministry, which will address non-medical, "quality of life" needs of frail elders who are often overlooked by existing social service programs. Patricia is also an associate in ministry of the Evangelical Lutheran Church.
  • Rick Webb, Minneapolis, MN: Rick continues to expand his restaurant business. City Pages called his latest venture, Ciao Bella, "suburbia’s hottest new restaurant." I should try it; it’s only two blocks from my office. Now Rick is planning a new Italian restaurant to open in downtown Minneapolis in March. Look for it on Nicollet Mall next time you’re downtown for theatre or a concert or an event in the convention center.

FAMILY ADDITIONS:

  • Debra Neumann and husband, Ron Oechsler, traveled to Wuhan, Peoples Republic of China last July and returned with Eliana Mao Oechsler, their newly adopted daughter.
  • Joanne McConnell, Belle Plaine, MN, has grandchildren: Chase, age 3-1/2 and twins Sierra and Electra, age 7 months.

On a sadder note, I saw two names I recognized in the deaths reported to class agents by Randall Stuckey. One was Ruth Clauson Knautz ’47 and the other was Cathy Nelson ’74. I’m sure many of you knew these people.

SOME NEWS FROM CAMPUS:

Students and staff are in the midst of January Term and the campus landscape is covered with a beautiful blanket of snow. Once again, many students are taking advantage of J-Term opportunities with 127 on internships, 308 on study abroad programs, and 86 students studying at other domestic institutions. Despite the cold weather, progress is being made on construction of the new Campus Center due to be open in the fall of 1999. After a week and a half of classroom preparation covering the history and culture of South Africa, the Gustavus Choir will participate in a concert tour of the country January 14-February 2. The Gustavus Band will travel to South Dakota, Nebraska, Colorado, and Iowa for their concert tour during touring week, January 30-February 6. Athletic teams are in full swing with all teams looking to be competitive in MIAC play. Over Christmas break many teams traveled for non-conference games including men’s basketball winning a tournament in California, men’s hockey playing in Italy, and the swim teams competing in Bermuda.

Gustavus is once again in the news, making some national rankings. Gustavus ranked 12th among the top 22 leading small colleges in the nation providing active Peace Corps volunteers. Gustavus is ranked 15th in the listing of top 20 bachelor’s institutions that sent the most students overseas for international study during the 1996-97 academic year. Gustavus is ranked 18th of national liberal arts colleges in the number of National Merits with 17 students. Mark Anderson ’66, Dean of Admission, reports that applications for admission for the fall of 1999 are running 20 percent ahead of last year. The Admission Office instituted several new campus visit days in the summer and fall to account for the fact that few students could visit last spring. Alumni are reminded of the Alumni Scholarship Program ($10,000 over four years for children and grandchildren of alumni) available to qualified applicants. Call the Admission Office at 1-800-GUSTAVU(S) for applications.

I have a new e-mail address, and I love getting mail, so please contact me if you have news or questions or just because. marcia.l.stephens@aexp.com

Sincerely,

Marcia Stephens

1973 Class Agent