Class of '65
June 2002

Dear Classmates,

I'm very late getting this letter out, but retirement for us is almost busier than having a "real job."  We spent two months in Texas teaching woodcarving to "Winter Texans" from all over the United States and Canada.  Then we spent another month on the road, first to Branson, MO to take a woodcarving class, then to Sacramento, CA to teach a class.  We really enjoyed taking some time to see northern California, especially the redwoods, the Azaleas and Rhododendrons.  Next year we are adding a couple of weeks in Florida.  If we are coming to an area near you, please contact us―we could do lunch somewhere.  Oh yes, Fred is taking sailing lessons―any sailors out there?

It seems that you all are very busy too, as we get little information from you lately.  Take a few minutes and let the Gustavus Alumni Office know what you are doing these days.  The small notes I do get are sometimes out of date and are occasionally hard to read.  I do apologize if any mistakes are made in these letters.  We do the best we can.  We heard from less than a dozen classmates this time.  How about 2 or 3 times that many for the next letter?

We do hear from a few classmates on a regular basis.  Dick Shager (Hudson, WI) is a registered representative with MML Investors Services Inc. and Kay Johnson Shager is teaching mathematics at Macalester and Augsburg Colleges.  They are also having lots of fun with music trips to Chicago, etc.  David Larson (Santa Fe, NM) is enjoying retirement in a big way with trips to Kenya, Tanzania, Alaska and California.  He got back to St. Peter for his 40th high school reunion.  Karen Callstrom Strusz (Red Wing, MN) retired from the Red Wing School District in 2000 where she taught elementary education for 35 years.  Her husband, Arne, retired from the Red Wing Shoe Company in 2001.  Ruth Aagard Kinney (Cedar City, UT) is currently working at Kolob Regional as the resident services director.  She listed quite a variety of events she helps the residents plan.  Janell Larson Peterson (Pewaukee, WI) tells us that life is good on Pewaukee Lake.  Barbara Nordlund Butler (Greeley, CO) is retired and enjoying being a grandmother.  Marilyn Beck Brooks (Lynchburg, VA) is the president of Ivy Creek Farm B&B.  Diane Wajda Johnson (Chaska, MN) was to graduate this spring from Luther Seminary with a Master of Arts in Ministry with the aging.

Now to a few newspaper clippings we received.  Tim Robinson (Kasota, MN) is the new conference director for the Nobel Conference.  Tim has been a professor of psychology at Gustavus for 32 years.  Tim not only attended virtually all of the conferences since 1981, but also has been involved in many aspects of the conferences.

I always enjoy seeing something special in the papers about Bill Holm.  While he still lives in Minnesota, he bought a house on an island near the north coast of Iceland about 30 miles south of the Arctic Circle.  He has "phased retired " from SSU in Marshall, MN and spends every summer at his Iceland home.  It is mosquito free.  He spends his time writing poems and waiting for the sunset.

We do have one phone call addition at the last minute.  Linda Larson McNary (Minneapolis, MN) has agreed to share the Class Agent job with Bev (Bloomquist) Todaro and me.  She has completed an adjunct year teaching graphic design at the University of Minnesota.  She is teaching various clay classes at the Northern Clay Center in Minneapolis, which is an excellent place for anyone to explore a creative experience.  Linda is heading to New Mexico for two weeks of R&R in quest of dinosaur tracks, pottery and Pueblos.  Like many of us, she is really enjoying her grandchildren.  Linda is one more contact to get info into these letters.

Campus news:  A monthly e-mail newsletter from the Alumni Association is now online.  To subscribe, contact:  Some campus news from that newsletter includes:

Evelyn Young, Director of the Food Service 1949-1981 celebrates her 90th birthday at an event at Mount Olivet Lutheran Church on July 25.  No cost.  All are welcome.  Please call (800-487-8437) or email the alumni office ( to reserve.

Gustavus graduates largest class.  On June 2, 609 students received Bachelor of Arts degrees making this the largest class to graduate in the school's 140-year history.  There were loud cheers during the Baccalaureate Service when it was announced that the Commencement ceremony would be held outside.  Unfortunately, an isolated and brief thunderstorm moved through St. Peter just as the graduates were to process onto Hollingsworth Field, causing the graduates to move into Lund Arena for a shortened ceremony while standing as family and friends watched on big-screen televisions around campus.  Max Hailperin, associate professor of mathematics and computer science won the Edgar Carlson Award for Distinguished Teaching.

On-line Community called "Hello Walk" is up and running.  For the rest of June it's a discussion with Chris Gilbert, Associate Professor of Political Science, on such topics as:  third parties, urban vs. rural issues, redistricting, and, the Minnesota Hot Button subject, Will Jesse Ventura run for another term?

If you're up north.  On July 9 an alumni gathering will be held in Walker, MN, with naturalist (WCCO's own) Jim Gilbert ’62.  More details to come or contact the Alumni Office.

Elaine Buck Stenman

1965 Co-class Agent