Class of '54
January 2001

Dear 54ers,

Before getting to Carillon Chimes, our 50th anniversary project and a major new venture for a Gustavus class, here are a few items:

OUR SYMPATHIES to Phyllis Anderson Swansson Adamson. Her husband, Russ Adamson, highly-regarded coach and teacher at Willmar High School, died on New Year's Day.

GREETINGS from Waldo Lindberg, "... holding up the West Coast presence of Gustavus…at the intersection of the Columbia River and Willapa Bay inWashington…"

MATURE MOUNTAIN GOATS: Vic and Janet Carter, Paul and Andrea Olson, Paul and Sandy (Clark ’57) Vollan, and John and Joan (Bonn ’55) Wright will join Dave Johnson's seventh hiking tour in the Norwegian mountains this summer. Other ’54ers who have hiked the route are: Jim and the late Betty Anderson, Fran (Gabrielson) and Will Blomgren, Dick and Mary Brubacher, and Rog and Janet (Christenson ’53) Carlson.

CLASS SNOWBIRDS include Mike and Jean (Randin ’55) Anderson, soon moving from St. Peter to Arkansas, Carol (Lester) and Ken Lassiter, John and Lois (Norman) Myers, Ardis (Peterson) and Bert Schwarz, and Elaine (Wellendorf) and Stan Fink, all in Florida, Bernice (Hecht) Martino in South Carolina.

PROOF THAT A LIBERAL ARTS DEGREE PROVIDES FLEXIBILITY: Comparing our listings in our commencement program with news about our subsequent career is a good reminder of developments in our careers that we could not anticipate in student days:

Jim Anderson, major English, CEO, Anderson Associates, developers of GED learning materials for prisoners.

Sharon Anthony Bowers, major speech, author, president, Confidence Training, Inc.

Duane Goese, major Spanish, computer specialist in Switzerland

John Hallsten, major philosophy, psychologist in Alaska

Paul Kaus, major biology, investment firm executive

Virginia Swenson, major art, flight attendant, United Air Lines

Arlene Waxlax Sonday, major secretarial education, national consultant on reading education


The Gustavus campus has just completed another busy and exciting January Term with 2300-plus students enrolled for credit! They are offered over 100 January Term courses, including 16 travel courses (plus 36 international courses through the UMAIE consortium). There were also 15 courses on the special Environmental Studies theme for J-Term 2001. Some of these courses include, Chemistry in the Environment, The Literature of Winter, Geographical Issues in the Third World, Global Environmental Change, Amazonia: An Eco-Historical Perspective, GIS in Environmental Analysis, The Changing Face of Agriculture, and Environmental Journalism. Next year (2002) the January Term theme will be "Global Village" and will feature both international and domestic diversity focused courses. After that J-Term themes are planned for "Service-Learning" (2003) and "Undergraduate Research" (2004).

Thirteen west coast chapter events have recently taken place in conjunction with the choir tour. There are a few chapter events still coming up. You are invited and encouraged to attend these national chapter alumni events. Invitations are sent to alumni in those chapters. For more information, please call the Alumni Office at 800-487-8437 or look on the web at

Gustavus Choir Home Concert, February 10, Christ Chapel, 7:30 p.m.

Marco Island gathering February 24

Vero Beach gathering February 25

Reunions 2001

50th Anniversary Class and 50 Year Club reunions will take place on campus, May 25-26 for the Class of 1951 and the 50 Year Club. Registration material will be mailed in April.

A reminder that all other reunion classes (1956, 1961, 1966, 1971, 1976, 1981, 1986, 1991 and 1996) will have their reunions at Homecoming on September 21-22. Class gatherings will take place in the Twin Cities at the DoubleTree Hotel, Minneapolis Airport at the Mall, on Friday, September 21. Homecoming activities will take place on campus on Saturday, September 22.

Will you help Gustavus remain strongly church related? Encourage your ELCA congregation to join the Gustavus Adolphus College Association of Congregations. There is no cost. For more information, call the Office of Church Relations at 800-726-6194 or e-mail Craig Johnson at

 Dave Johnson

1954 Class Agent


It's now a year since we, the undersigned six, came out of several discussions with a plan about what our class can do to make a difference in our college, THE CLASS OF 1954 CARILLON. Here is our first report, a reminder of the plan:

  • We seek pledges to be sent to the Gustavus Fund Office, c/o Jim Isaak, Director of the Gustavus Fund: cash, appreciated shares of stock, other securities.
  • We've had some great pledges, a few which deserve to be termed Leadership Gifts, $5000 distributed over the three years remaining before our 50th Reunion Celebration. We need more Leadership Pledges. We hope everyone will give something. We believe the cause is both timely in our own financial planning and for Gustavus, whose small carillon was destroyed in the tornado. We also believe that the idea of a class's designating a major gift is a strategy the college will study carefully as it refines the Gustavus Fund and other giving strategies.
  • We await sufficient gifts to permit us to announce where we are relative to our goal: $40,000 for the carillon and $100,000 (much of this likely in deferred gifts, life estates) for its endowment.
  • We ask you therefore to talk with your accountant or financial adviser about what you can do for the cause and to begin your pledge during 2001.
  • The plan to be completed by May, 2004.

Please send any questions you may have to one of us or to The Gustavus Fund Office (866) 487-3863.