Class of '93
October 2002

Greetings to my fellow classmates!

Yes, I know, you did not receive a class letter last spring, and I must first apologize for not writing one.  In the olden days when I was a student at GAC, I would simply go to my professors and make up a fabulous story when I didn’t get my work done on time.  However, since it has been almost ten years since I was at GAC, I will just be truthful and tell you that I forgot all about it!  Hopefully there will be enough news in this letter to earn your forgiveness…

First, I am going to discuss everyone’s favorite topic, which is the Gustavus Fund.  Both the Phonorama and E-Link fall campaigns will kick off beginning the week of October 7.  Like last year, our class has one of the largest groups of alumni volunteers that are devoting time to help with these campaigns.  However, our class is falling behind with regard to donations to the Gustavus Fund.  We only had 120 donors during 2001-2002, which fell far short of our goal of 155 donors.  Our goal for the 2002-2003 campaign is 152 donors, and since I was an accounting major I can easily do the math and tell you that we only need 32 more donors from last year to meet our goal!  Therefore, please answer your phone and/or respond to the emails our volunteers will soon be sending you, your donation will make a huge difference, regardless of the amount.  If you do not receive a phone call or email for some reason, but would still like to make a donation, you may visit the following link to make a donation: https://secure.gac.edu/giving/giving.cfm, or contact The Gustavus Fund Office at gustavusfund@gustavus.edu.  Thank you in advance for your support of Gustavus!

And now for our next topic, which is our class reunion.  As difficult as it is to believe, this spring will mark the ten-year anniversary of our graduation, and our reunion will take place during Homecoming Weekend on September 26 & 27, 2003.  I have already had several people express interest in helping to plan the reunion, and I will be contacting all interested parties to kick off the planning process in the next few weeks.  Anyone who is interested in being on the Reunion Committee should contact me at Kristen.lamont@genmills.com, or at (612) 869-8112.

Now, as I mentioned before, we have lots of news to report, so I will make you wait no longer to learn what is going on with our classmates!

Births

  • Susan Bright Bergquist and husband, John, welcomed daughter, Elizabeth Clara, on February 22, 2002.
  • Tricia Simons Boltmann and husband, Reed, welcomed son, Jake Reed, on October 19, 2001.
  • Laura Skattum Boomgaarden and husband, Mark, welcomed daughter, Ella Rose, on March 21, 2002.
  • Jason Burrows and wife, Amy, welcomed son, Peter James, on February 5, 2002.  He joins twin brothers Matthew and Jake.
  • Margy Jones Campion and husband, Tim (1991), welcomed daughter, Kate Elizabeth, on December 25, 2001.
  • Robert and Tammi (Wenstrom) Congdon welcomed daughter, Hannah LeAnn, on October 7, 2000.
  • Jess Rogich Deakin and husband, Rob, welcomed daughter, Grace Marie, on October 4, 2002.
  • Pete Dokken and wife, Christy, welcomed daughter, Gabriella Sofia, on September 8, 2001.
  • Jen Buckman Fransdal and husband, Wendel, welcomed son, Camden Knute, on May 29, 2002.
  • Brian Hanson and wife, April, welcomed son, Hunter Quinn, on January 14, 2002.
  • Jennifer Larsen Harnisch and husband, Eric, welcomed son, Andrew Eric, on July 24, 2001.
  • Sharon Tyree Howell and husband, Keith, welcomed daughter, Dana Elizabeth, on February 24, 2001.
  • Sarah Eckblad Johnson and husband, Cameron ’92, welcomed daughter, Annalise Marie, on September 13, 2002.  She joins big brother, Alexander.
  • Jon Kopperud and wife, Linda, were expecting a baby on February 4, 2002.  Jon, let us know what you had!
  • Sherry Kirchberg Marsh and husband, Kelly, welcomed daughter, Mikaela Ann, on December 13, 2001.
  • Mike Nordberg and wife, Dana (Peterson, ’94), welcomed daughter, Callie Marie, on January 8, 2002.
  • Greg Ortquist and wife, Lora, welcomed daughter, Hailey Marie, on February 27, 2002.
  • Rob and Amy (Hansen) Rimington had a son, Luke, on July 9, 2002.
  • Joyce Drury Rosen and husband, Jaime, welcomed son, Seth Matthew, on June 17, 2002.
  • Jason and Paige (Reed) Sawyer welcomed daughter, Marla Paige, on January 23, 2002.  She joins brother, Ryan.
  • Mark and Amy (Downham) Schwanz welcomed daughter, Brynn, on November 29, 2001.
  • Stacey Schrock Simonett and husband, Andy, welcomed daughter, Sara Ann, on July 18, 2002.
  • Jennifer Mitchell Simphoukham and husband, Southin, welcomed daughter, Kristin Faith, on July 22, 2002.
  • Dawn Wolford Sperr and husband, Royden, welcomed daughter, Katherine Carol, on November 11, 2001.
  • Tara Dittbenner Videle and husband, Joe, welcomed son, Nico Joseph, on April 29, 2002. 
  • Andy Voorhees and wife, Gretchen, were expecting a baby on May 25, 2002.  Andy, let us know the details!
  • Jon and Kirsten (Eckblad) Yocum welcomed son, Oliver Ness, on December 24, 2001.

Weddings

  • Jennifer Illies and John Heath on October 13, 2001.
  • Christine Jensen and Jeffrey Rohrer on June 30, 2001.
  • Gina Negri and Peter Klebanoff in the fall of 2001.
  • Brent Newman and Michelle Baker (’96) on September 29, 2001.
  • Chris Olson and Allison Nytes on June 28, 2002.
  • Sara Sammelson and Quinn O’Reilly on May 18, 2002.
  • Matt Thompson and Anne Roenker on April 13, 2002.
  • William Voelker and Virginia Bodenstab on May 26, 2002.
  • Eric Wood and Emily Genter on June 16, 2002.

Careers

  • Steve Anderson is a senior writer for Minnesota Public Radio.
  • Tammy Betzing is seeking an adult nurse practitioner degree at Viterbo College.
  • Jason Burrows is the director of strategic alliances for SMARTS, a network management software company.
  • Tammi Wenstrom Congdon is an internal medicine physician at the CentraCare Clinic & St. Cloud Hospital.
  • Dan Dewey is a third year medical student at the University of Minnesota.
  • Jennifer Illies Heath is a database analyst at USBancorp Insurance Services.
  • Gretchen Kittelson Jerva is the manager of annual giving & alumni relations at the University of Michigan-College of Pharmacy.
  • Kristina Edstrom Motzko is a marketing programs manager at Digi International.
  • Kristina Nordstrom is a senior account development manager with Digital River, Inc.
  • Matyas Sundheim is the executive director of the Bonanza Education Center.
  • Mark Simpson-Vos is an associate editor at the University of North Carolina Press, where he recently wrote a successful NEH grant to support the planning of the “Encyclopedia of North Carolina Online.”
  • Peggy Wehrkamp Reynolds teaches band at Hastings Middle School.
  • David Wiberg has been working as an independent consultant, developing Windows-based river basin simulation software for the Bureau of Reclamation.
  • Tami Wunsch is a vitamin purchaser for Cid’s Food Market.
  • Kristin Rantala Zylka is a national account manager at CIGNA Behavioral Health.

And I must add that I happily graduated from the Cardinal Stritch University MBA program in June 2002.  Another diploma from the same program is waiting for fellow classmate, Jon Ketola, and as soon as he finishes writing his thesis, he will be able to take it home!  I can honestly say I have now had enough of school, and have no plans to set foot in a classroom ever again.  No Ph.D.s for me!

Welcome Class of 2006

Approximately 700 new students arrived on campus this fall keeping the total student enrollment just over 2500.  Almost 40% of the new class were in the top 10% of their high school class.  There are many interesting opportunities for first year students even before school starts with a community service immersion experience in Twin Cities, a cultural study in Paris and a wilderness experience in the Boundary Waters.

Gustavus named a “Best Buy”

The Fiske Guide has again named Gustavus one of forty-three “Best Buys” in the country.  This is based on an exceptional investment of tuition money for an exceptional education.

Hello Walk Online Community is featuring a discussion with Political Science Professor Don Ostrom discussing the upcoming elections.  Join the conversation by going to <http://hellowalk.gustavus.edu>

Gustie students start new community service initiative called the AMIGOS program.  The 65 Spanish speaking volunteers serve the growing Chicano-Latino population in St. Peter by providing after-school tutoring, teaching ESL classes to adults and serve as big partners.  This program is in addition to the other on-going and one-time service opportunities that 75% of students participate in while at Gustavus.

Building a Great Gustavus Campaign was launched to the public on Saturday, September 7.  Since the tornadoes of 1998, the campaign has raised $77 million toward a $100 million goal.  The focus of the remainder of the campaign is on funding renovations in Old Main, growing endowment, and increasing gifts and participation in the Gustavus Alumni Fund.  Your personal financial support  and your leadership are needed and greatly appreciated.

Minnesota Legislature Cuts Financial Aid

Due to cuts with the Minnesota State Legislature, Gustavus lost $400,000 in money for student employment.  The college continues to work hard to meet financial needs of students since nearly 80% of Gustavus students receive financial assistance.  This includes $14 million from the colleges own budget.  Your support of the annual fund goes directly to help these students and is especially needed to help make up the financial gap for these current students.

As much as I would love to include more personal anecdotes, this letter has grown too long, so I must cut myself off.  Perhaps next time!  Until then, please continue to contact me with news and/or interest in participating on the Reunion Committee at Kristen.lamont@genmills.com or at (612) 869-8112.  Have a wonderful fall!

Kristen Lamont

1993 Class Agent