Class of 1971

March 2011

40-Year Reunion

Reunion dates ― September 30 – October 1, 2011

March 2011

To Warren Mullen in California, Jan Streeter Reisenauer in North Dakota, Rich Reinertsen in Arizona, Gail Polk Mitchell in Texas, Diane Preblick Moerer in Idaho, Paula Bjorklund Morgan in Virginia, Warren Borchert in Idaho, Gail Aikala Passenier in the Virgin Islands – and every Gustie from the Class of 1971 – greetings!

And special greetings to Sigourney Weaver, Richard Gere, Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Bonnie Raitt and Whoopi Goldberg!  Wait!  Hold the phone!  Like most of us, these folks were born in 1949 but didn’t happen to be in the Gustavus Class of 1971!

First!  A reunion update.  We were planning to have our Saturday night get-together downtown St. Peter at Richard’s but, sad to say, it has closed and the new owners are not particularly interested in reserving the restaurant for our reunion.  Instead we’ll be gathering after the football game on campus in the arboretum instead.  (Gustavus is encouraging reunion classes to hold their parties on campus this year, which I, for one, think is a great idea!)

And don’t forget the more formal dinner the night before in Lund Arena to kick off the Gustavus Sesquicentennial where we’ll sit at tables by classes.

From the Alumni Association

The Alumni Board of Directors has adopted a new class leadership structure that will build on the class agent program developed for Gustavus way back at a meeting on campus in 1954.  (My dad happened to be at that meeting and at 92 is still class agent for the Class of 1942!)

Some things to consider…

You are Gustavus!  You are what Gustavus “produces.”  You validate the mission of Gustavus and, as alumni, are a core asset of the college.

Gustavus needs your help!  We need to continue connecting alumni to our alma mater in meaningful ways with effective communications that build and maintain lasting relationships.  We need to think of new ways to connect us all to Gustavus and to each other.  To help with this I am looking for four of you from the Class of ’71 to consider the following new officer positions−and then volunteer to represent our class for the next five years!

First position is Annual Fund Chair.  The focus will be to build class awareness of the Gustavus Annual Fund and the ways in which it supports students and the college in the mission of educating Gusties for lives of leadership and service.

The Communications Chair will coordinate a committee to keep our class informed and connected−with each other and with Gustavus−through class letters, class news in “The Gustavus Quarterly,” e-mail, web communication and social media.

The Reunion Chair will be responsible for the recruitment of a reunion committee to plan our reunions and organize class events outside our reunion years as well.

Last is Student Recruitment Chair who will be responsible for engaging the Class of ’71 to recommend Gustavus to high school students to participate in the Gustavus Recruitment Network program.

By the way, instead of being Class Agent, a role I’ve truly enjoyed all these years, I will now, for the next five years, be Class President under the new structure.

Okay, everyone!  Here’s your chance to participate more fully and in new ways in the life of Gustavus!  Please give this some thought and get in touch with the Alumni Office!  Thank you!

Speaking of social media and networking…  During the last conference call of our reunion committee it was suggested we set up a Facebook page for the Class of ’71.  Hard as it is to admit I’m a technology newbie.  (I prefer to think of myself that way rather than a technology luddite as I’ve been called by a dear friend!)  Would anyone be willing to set up a Facebook page for our class?  Get a hold of the Alumni Office and let them know, they’ll get back to the rest of us and we’ll take it from there.  Sounds like a good way to keep informed about classmates and know who’s coming to the reunion, too!

Speaking of one last item around the reunion, enclosed with this letter is a reunion giving card and envelope.  Please think generously as we get closer to celebrating our 40th reunion.

One more thought from a recent meeting of Class Agents, a quote from Woodrow Wilson…

We are not here merely to make a living.  You are here to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement.  You are here to enrich the world and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand.”


On January 13 I left for Italy on a tour with the Gustavus Choir, “Cultures in Creativity,” planned by Gustavus Choir Director Greg Aune, Chaplain Brian Johnson ʼ80 and staff members Lisa Westphal, Jackie Neeck Peterson ʼ77 and Stacia Vogel.  Fourteen of us companions joined the choir for an amazing two weeks of fun, history and glorious music!

We landed in Rome where we spent three days of sightseeing, including the Colosseum, the Roman Forum and the Vatican.  The choir participated in a mass at Saint Peter’s, and Chaplain Brian assisted with communion.  Words can’t express how moving it was to hear our college choir sing at that service and, of course, it brought back so many memories of my own days in the Gustavus Choir and all of you from our class who sang as well!

The tour included Sorrento, Assisi, stops in Siena and San Gimignano, Florence and Venice.  The Gustavus Choir has never sounded better and to hear these young men and women sing in historic and stunning sacred spaces exceeded all expectations!  On our last night in Venice the choir provided the music for mass at Saint Mark’s and then proceeded to the Church of San Salvatore for the last performance of the trip.

I’ve traveled in Europe many times over the years, both on tours and with friend, Mary Ellen and I have to say this Italian adventure was a highlight, a true “mountaintop experience!”  The choir’s home concert was in Christ Chapel on February 12.  Connie Baer Youngdahl was there and, as they say, blown away by the choir’s performance!

Did you know over 90 per cent of alums read the class news first when the Gustavus “Quarterly” comes in the mail?

Here’s the latest we’ve heard about the Class of ’71…

Diane Havlik Shallue continues to work at University Lutheran Church of Hope in Minneapolis, near Dinkytown, as director of Christian education and small group ministry.  She occasionally does teaching at Luther Seminary on the topic of intergenerational Christian education.  Diane was recently reelected as president of the Lutheran Association of Christian Educators.  (You can find out more about LACE at:

Kim Pinkham retired in 2008 after 36 years at the University of Minnesota where she supervised two labs, one clinical and one research (cell culture) for pediatric nephrology.  The University gave the “old-timers” a great offer on health insurance if they retired before June of ’08 and Kim is now working as a nanny for one of the doctors with whom she did research.  She plans to really retire this summer.  She’s also on her fifteenth year of teaching sixth grade at Normandale Lutheran Church in Edina which she refers to as her “passion and joy!”  Kim is also involved with several church committees and would possibly like to work in hospice in the future…

Susan Engel Jennings retired at the end of January as administrative assistant with the Roseau Police Department.  Prior to this position she taught in the Roseau school system for 19 years.  Retirement plans include time in Florida and Arizona, time with the two sons and three grandchildren and friends…Bob Teerink moved last summer from Minneapolis to Worthington where he’s busy with Spanish interpreting for the Worthington Schools and the courts…

Tom Bartsch is a graduate student at Texas Tech University and is currently living in Clovis, New Mexico…Connie Madsen Dallman lives in Batavia, Illinois and works for the law offices of Hoscheit, McGuirk, McCracken and Cuscaden…Alonzo Jackson is an executive administrative assistant for the Chicago Public Libraries…Karen Saggau Miller lives in Carlsbad, California, where she’s a mortgage loan officer with TCF Financial Corporation…Cindy Kisch Shotwell is an R.N. case manager with Walton Rehabilitation Hospital in Harlem, Georgia…Jim Hunter lives in Plymouth and is president of Asset Growth Strategies, Inc…

Randy Beahrs, North Oaks, is a urologist with Metropolitan Urologic Specialists…Pearl Seabrooks Fuller works at Lithonia High School and lives in Conyers, Georgia…Judy Barnes lives in Palm Coast, Florida, and is a broker with Hammock Dunes Luxury Realty…Doug Childs is an account manager in specialty underwriting with Travelers Companies and lives in Eden Prairie…Tollie Flippin lives in Golden Valley and is a financial services representative with Prudential Insurance…Brian Miller lives in Saint Paul and is executive director of Seward Redesign…

Susan Alexis is a paralegal with Swaim and Finlayson in Albuquerque, New Mexico…James How works in finance with Glacier Institute in Kalispell, Montana…Greg Johnson is a general surgeon and partner with West Michigan Surgical Specialists in Grand Rapids…Mark and Grace (Philpot) Monson are in Duluth where Mark’s a physician at Duluth Clinic and Grace is director of music ministries at Lutheran Church of the Cross…

Warren Mullen owns the real estate company Pacific Union in Mill Valley, California…Bonnie Ruidl Harnit is a fourth grade teacher in the Minnetonka Schools…Jim Klein, Excelsior, is vice president for KleinBank…Barb Anderson Swanstrom is a dental hygienist with Swanstrom and Johnson in Duluth…

Dennis Hedlund is a consultant in Winterset, Iowa…Natalie Peterson Torkelson is administrative director of cardiovascular services at Hillcrest Medical Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma…Eileen Holz lives in Saint Peter where she’s a graphic designer…Lynnae Hultgren Ringus, Plymouth, is sales manager with Mark Fisher Footwear…Phil and Cindy (Lennartson) Dalen live in Stillwater, MN.  Cindy is a teaching aide in special education with the Little Canada Schools and Phil is executive vice president with SPL Solutions…

John Hagberg is pastor of Saint Mark’s Lutheran Church in Sioux City, Iowa…Terry and Vicki (Larsen) Anderson live in Cloquet where Vicki continues to work as a physician with Raiter Clinic…John and Chris (Dahms) Dildine live in Loveland, Colorado.  John continues his work as a dentist and Chris is a counselor with the Thompson School District…Jim Ackerman lives in Vero Beach, Florida, where he’s director of distribution for CVS Pharmacy…Tom Farm lives in Hugo and is president of Olsen, Thielen and Company…

Deb Linquist Wickum is substitute teaching in the Detroit Lakes Schools…Brad Waller lives in Palmetto Bay, Florida, and is president and principal hydrologist for Hydrologic Associates, USA…Windy Block is city administrator for Rushford and lives in Montevideo…Dennis Timmerman, Spring Valley, is pastor at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church…Jim Himanga is a geologic scientist with Exxon Mobil Corporation in Kingwood, Texas…Michelle Peiffer Henrichsen is office manager for James H. Henrichsen in Grand Rapids, Minnesota…

Hey!  If each of us called at least one other Gustavus friend and encouraged that friend to come to our 40th reunion, think of the great turnout we’d have next fall!  Take care and stay in touch!

Bruce Johnson

1971 Class Agent

Campus News

Alumni Association Awards Announced

The Greater Gustavus Award is the highest award given to those, who by deed, have notably advanced and aided Gustavus Adolphus College.  Walter Youngquist ’42, Eugene, OR, chair emeritus, Department of Geology, University of Oregon, and consulting geologist, was selected as the 2011 recipient of the Greater Gustavus Award.  Youngquist has established five different endowed funds at the College and is the recipient of a Gustavus Distinguished Alumni Citation in the field of geology in 2002.  Walter’s father, Walter Youngquist ’16, received the Greater Gustavus Award in 1953.

Distinguished Alumni Citations recognize outstanding and exceptional professional achievement, such as unusual honor accorded to the individual in his or her field of endeavor.  Named as 2011 recipients are John “Jack” Bergman ’69, St. Francisville, LA, lieutenant general, retired, United States Marine Corp., in the field of military service; Robert Brown ’83, Rochester, MN, John T. and Lillian Matthews Professor of Neuroscience, Chair of Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic, in the field of medicine; and Mark Thomsen ’78, Henderson, NV, professional operatic tenor, in the field of music.

The First Decade Award recognizes early professional achievement to one female and one male in the 10th Anniversary Class.  Selected were Kirsten Cullen Sharma ’01, New York, NY, clinical assistant professor, New York University Child Study Center, New York University Langone Medical Center, and Jonathan Poole ’01, Washington, DC, special agent, violent crime branch, Diplomatic Security Service, U.S. Department of State.  The Awards will be presented at the Alumni Banquet on Saturday, May 28.

Sesquicentennial Award

In 2011–2012, Gustavus will celebrate its 150th academic year.  The Board of Trustees has established an award in honor of this Sesquicentennial anniversary to recognize individuals who have made a significant difference in the life of the College.  The award, called “The Sesquicentennial Award,” will acknowledge and pay tribute to living alumni, parents, friends, and retired faculty and staff who:

  • Through actions in their personal or professional lives, have advanced the status of Gustavus as a premier liberal arts college;
  • Have set a new precedent in the ways they supported and advanced the mission of the College as an institution dedicated to preparing students “for fulfilling lives of leadership and service in society”; and/or
  • Have brought particular dignity or honor to the College.

Please submit nominations online at .  For more information about the Sesquicentennial Awards, visit .

“Come on You Gusties” Breakfasts

Engage with other alumni and learn something new about your alma mater at the monthly Gustie breakfasts.  New in January was the start of the breakfasts in St. Peter.  Minneapolis breakfasts are the 3rd Wednesday of the month, St. Peter breakfasts are the 2nd Wednesday of the month.

The speaker at both the breakfasts for March will be Kate Knutson, political science professor.  The Minneapolis breakfast is Wednesday, March 16, 8–9:30 a.m., at the Doubletree Hotel Minneapolis-Park Place, 1500 Park Place Blvd. Cost is $10 at the door.  Reserve your spot by e-mailing the Office of Alumni Relations at or by calling 800-487-8437.

The St. Peter breakfast will be Wednesday, April 13, 7:30–9 a.m. in a campus banquet room in the C. Charles Jackson Campus Center.  Cost is $8 per person, or $15 for two, payable at the door.  Reserve your spot by e-mailing or by calling 507-933-7512.

Upcoming breakfasts include Warren Wunderlich, director of the physical plant, in April and Carolyn O’Grady, international education in May.

Chapter Gatherings

This year President and Kris Ohle have many travel dates planned in order to reach out to all of our alumni and bring them an update from the College.  Please mark your calendar if you live in or near one of these locations:

Jacksonville, FL – March 26 – Bill and Sharon (Hansen) Johnson ’65 ʼ64

Orlando – March 28 – Orlando Airport Marriott

Tampa – March 29 – Tampa Marriott Westshort

Naples – March 30 – Island Country Club

Chicago – April 2

GLA Author Day – April 5

Gustavus Library Associates offer a double delight with the celebrated Erdrich sisters at the Spring Author Day brunch on Tuesday, April 5, 9:30 a.m. at the Edina Country Club.  The engaging sisters will share the podium to talk about books, writing, storytelling, and art.  The cost is $25 and you can make reservations online at or call the Office of Marketing and Communication at 507-933-7550.  RSVP by Wednesday, March 30, and invite a friend or two for a delightful Author Day morning event.