Class of '73
May 2004

Dear Classmates and Friends:

Thanks to those of you who have sent e-mails to me - even the ones that point out my errors.  It seems I missed a few 30th Reunion attendees.  They were:  Michael Matuzek, Paul Londeen and Susan Engelsma Wilcox.  Only four and a half years until the next reunion so start thinking about being there.

I recently visited my niece at UM-Morris.  She gave us a tour of the campus.  I was surprised and, I must admit, alarmed, to see books and backpacks, abandoned in dorm lounges and the student center.  My niece assured me that it was okay to leave your things for a short time, that no one would take them.  She doesn't lock her door.  Takes me back to 1969, in Wahlstrom.  But even at Gustavus, life had changed by 1973.  On one of the bulletin boards, I saw a flyer with a familiar name, that of Phil Bryant.  I think he was on the UM-Morris campus to read his poetry.

It's Phonorama time, but my Phono pals are traveling.  Gail Johnson Speckmann recently had her annual art show.  Every year she seems to have more paintings.  One of these years, she's either going to have to rent an auditorium or buy a bigger house.  She can't phone with me because she's in The Netherlands, leading a tour, taking pictures, and generating ideas for more pictures.  Karen Bukosky Snedeker is moving to Paris for a couple of years.  Her husband, Bill, works for Ecolab and has been assigned to Paris.  They have found an apartment, conveniently located between two metro stops.  They're moving on May 4, so you have already missed your chance to wish them "Bon Voyage".

I phoned classmates for two nights during this session of Phonorama.  Mostly, I left messages.  Phonorama used to be fun.  It's not quite so fun anymore.  Why?  For the very simple reason that many of you are no longer there to talk to me.  Are you really not home?  Does your Caller ID register the unfamiliar number of the cell phones Sprint provides for us?  Do you not want to talk to a classmate?  If you really would rather not be called, it's okay to tell the Alumni Office that.  It won't hurt anyone's feelings.  The Alumni Office is trying to give people options as to how they wish to be contacted, so don't be shy.  Just email them at and tell them what your preference is.  You can also contact me through the Alumni Office, or directly at  For those of you who did answer your phones, thank you!!  I had some wonderful conversations.  The highlight was the conversation with Jane Peterson Holmquist.   She reminded me that I had wondered about one of the Yugoslav exchange students, Gordana Perc.  Gordana was my roommate during second semester of our sophomore year.  During the war in Bosnia, I started thinking about her - and wrote those thoughts in a class letter.  I asked if anyone had heard from her or knew where she was.  Jane emailed me that she would like to know if I received an answer, as she was also interested in Gordana's whereabouts.  Summer of 2002, Jane, and Joyce Tesarek '72, traveled to the country once known as Yugoslavia.  Jane was attending a conference for astronomy librarians in Prague, and Joyce was along for the ride.  While they were there, Jane looked up Gordana's mother.  Apparently there are not very many with the last name Perc.  Jane actually talked to Gordana's mother and learned that Gordana is living in Budapest.  That's all we know, but at least we know she wasn't killed in the war.  Thank you, Jane!

Okay, here's the pitch you've all been waiting for.  Yup, we're coming to the end of the 50 x 50 campaign.  The goal of the campaign is to achieve 50% class participation by the 50th anniversary of the Alumni Fund.  May 31 is the deadline.  At the end of March, our class participation rate was 32%.  It's probably higher by now, but we're not at 50%.  How do I know that?  Because if we achieved 50% participation, I'm sure the Alumni Office would send me a floral arrangement or a balloon or at least an email congratulating me on my fine effort.  So come on.  Help me get the special recognition I so richly deserve.  Help current and future Gusties get the education they deserve.  Help your spirit become uplifted through giving.  Whatever you can afford.  The amount is not as important as your participation.  I'm a participant.  Are you? 

Now, here's the news:

  • Ivy Schutz Bernhardson sent this update:  "I am now vice president, legal affairs for the Hazelden Foundation in Center City - yes, it's the well-known chemical dependency treatment organization - we also do research and have a grad school in the field.  Our kids are Andy (almost 21)-a second-year midshipman at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland and Jenna, a senior at Jefferson in Bloomington, anxiously awaiting April 1 and envelopes from eight colleges.  Mark continues to thrive as Bloomington's city manager.  In celebration of mid-life, last summer I performed on the cast of "Evita" at the Bloomington Civic Theater - I hope to do more when Jenna leaves home!!"
  • Congratulations to Ed '72 and Jan (Hilton) Peterson, who wrote:  "Our first grandchild, a boy was born to our daughter and son-in-law Emily and Dan Kotlarek, at 6:32 p.m., April 7, 2004.  He weighed 8 lbs 15 oz.  His name is Aidan Gunnar Kotlarek. (Gunnar is Ed's middle name and was his grandfather's first name.)  We are excited to have a baby in the family again."
  • Anne Johanson Ingold, Geneva, IL, is the Demo Diva at Trader Joe's (one of 200 national stores) in Batavia, IL.  Her job includes conceiving the recipes and handing out samples and food information.
  • Deborah Tripp Hendrickson lives in Scottsdale, AZ, where she is a part-time kindergarten teacher.
  • Marty Daly Dennis and her husband, Mike, still live in Edmonds, WA.  Marty is a nursing administrator at Northwest Hospital in Seattle.
  • Lynn Sunde Gostomczik lives in Janesville, MN.  She is now teaching high school English instead of middle school language arts.
  • Lars and Susan (Borden) Lagerman, Phoenix, AZ, spent Christmas in Cozumel, Mexico, with Susan's sister, husband and three girls.  Add their two daughters to the mix and you're dealing with five teenage girls - look out!  Ellen is a sophomore at North High School, where she participates in the International Baccalaureate program; she is seriously considering Gustavus for college.
  • After 30+ years, Kelvin Miller still sends flowers to his wife, Diane (Clark '76), every Valentine's Day.  This year, he sent flowers to Diane's second grade classroom every day of that week.  Their two daughters, Ann Marie '04 and Angela '07, are students at Gustavus.
  • Marlee Ninde Khastou is a travel agent with Northgate Travel and Cruise in Seattle.  Her oldest daughter is in her second year at Whitman College, thinking about majoring in pre-med.
  • Cheryl Moyer Kurtz is executive director of New Life Outpatient Center in Davenport, IA.  She's very proud of her daughter, Dana's, personal success in dealing with a crime against her person.  That's all Matt wrote, except to say that it was an amazing story about turning bad stuff into good stuff.
  • Randy J Eide is a math and physics teacher for Madison Metropolitan Schools.  Yvonne (Skar) is a nurse for the State of Wisconsin.  They are empty nesting.  I can't read what their oldest daughter is doing, so you'll have to ask them.  They have a daughter at St. Olaf, studying Spanish and public health nursing.
  • Bob Koepp is clinical research coordinator for Children's Hospital in St. Paul, MN.  Here's how a person gets to this job with a philosophy and political science major.  In 1978, he attended the University of Pittsburg to study philosophy.  He wrote a research paper for University of Pittsburg Medical School, got the job, moved to California, then Florida, finally back to Minnesota.  Liberal arts rule!  [This is what I can decipher of Matt's notes.  If I really messed up, I hope Bob will set me straight.]
  • Steven Rouch - a childhood illness had a profound impact on Steve's life.  He started taking guitar lessons and eventually was playing publicly.  He is also a supporter of St. Jude's Hospital for Children.  He has combined these two interests by recording a CD, Somewhere Down the Line, which is being shared with those who donate to the hospital.  (From the Gustavus website).
  • Jane Peterson Holmquist is an astrophysics librarian at Princeton.  Her son is a junior at St. Olaf, majoring in music (band).
  • Steve King has a new job since April 2003.  He moved from Savage to South St. Paul city administration and lives in Mahtomedi.
  • Carmel Biggers, Sr. was principal at Cussetta Road Elementary School in Columbus, GA, until his retirement last June.  Now he mentors kids in math at Tech.  His wife, Vanessa, is principal at Marshall Middle School.
  • Niels Henriksen is production manager for Arrowhead Promotion and Fulfillment in Grand Rapids, MN.  His wife, Bonnie (Hawkinson '75), provides community education at Itasca Community College.  Son, Jeremy, graduated from Carnegie Mellon in '02, astrophysics.  Son, Jonathan, is finishing his junior year at St. Olaf in music theory; and spent last spring in Perth, Australia.  Heidi is a freshman at St. Olaf, where she is a strong pianist.  Katie is a junior in high school.
  • Mary Frey Sauter is an elementary art specialist for the Eau Claire Area School District.  Husband, James, is an administrator for Chippewa Falls Public Schools.  Daughter, Katie, graduated from UW-Madison in December with a business/accounting degree.

Did you notice that some people got more space than others?  That's because those people emailed their news to me.  Just want you to know that you can determine how much space you get.  J

Email addresses:

Many email addresses can be found at  Look for the Alumni page.

Karen Bukosky Snedeker           

Marlee Ninde Khastou               

Cheryl Moyer Kurtz                   

Randy and Yvonne Eide             

Jane Peterson Holmquist             

Steve King                                 

Carmel Biggers, Sr.                    

Niels Henriksen                          

Thanks to those of you who talked to me.  Thanks to those of you who have contributed to the Alumni Fund.  Thanks to those of you who will send your gift by May 31.

On Wednesday it was summer in Minneapolis.  Last night felt like fall.  But there are little leaves on the trees, tulips in my gardens, and buds on the lilac bushes, so it must be spring!


Marcia L Stephens

1973 Class Letter

P.S.  If anyone wants to join me for fall Phonorama, send me an email.  Bring a friend with you.  Come as a group of frat brothers or sorority sisters or choir or band members or whatever group you were a part of.  It's an opportunity to call your classmates all over the country for free.  I'll keep you apprised of the dates and the place.

Campus News:

President Peterson inaugurated

Dr. James Peterson '64 was inaugurated during a ceremony in Christ Chapel on Friday, April 16.  Other inaugural events scheduled April 15-18, included a symposium featuring Rev. Dr. Martin Marty, tree dedication, Gustavus Association of Congregations meeting, G.I.V.E. community service day in St. Peter, music concert, art exhibition, and an alumni reception preceding the Nobel Symphony Concert at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis.

50th Anniversary Alumni Fund Closes May 31

The 2004 Alumni Fund will close May 31 with a goal of 50 percent alumni participation. Thanks to everyone who has already participated with a gift.  If you haven't given, please think about sending a gift along with your news in the enclosed gold envelope. Gustavus alumni have a long tradition of strong alumni participation.  Help maintain our national ranking by participating in the 50th anniversary year of the Alumni Fund.

Scholarships and financial assistance at Gustavus

Did you know that scholarships and financial assistance for Gustavus students totals $18M, almost 25 percent of Gustavus' annual budget?  Alumni Fund gifts, including designated and unrestricted gifts, help enable students to receive a Gustavus education.  Gustavus offers two types of scholarships to students -- merit awards given to recognize academic achievement, and tuition grants are used to assist students with recognized financial need.  Endowed scholarships are an important part of the Gustavus grant program and currently nine percent of scholarship funds come from the endowment.

Alumni survey

An alumni survey was sent to 2,000 members of reunion classes.  Approximately 600 have responded as of April 1.  Questions on the survey consist of how well Gustavus prepared them for employment and graduate education, activities involved in while at Gustavus, personal growth skills, alumni events and services, and overall satisfaction with the College.  Results of the survey will be included in the Fall Quarterly.

Winter sports summary

Women's basketball finished third in the MIAC and advanced to the semifinals of the MIAC playoffs. Men's basketball won the MIAC regular season and playoff championship titles before losing to eventual national champion UW-Stevens Point in the NCAA national tournament. Men's hockey posted a third-place finish in the regular season and advanced to the semifinals of the MIAC playoffs. Women's hockey finished second in regular-season MIAC play, but won the post-season tournament and earned an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. Men's swimming won its third consecutive MIAC championship and completed their season by finishing ninth at the NCAA championships. Women's swimming won the MIAC championship and completed their season by finishing 13th at the NCAA championships. Men's Nordic skiing won its first-ever MIAC championship and finished fourth at the NCAA Central Region meet. Women's Nordic skiing claimed their third consecutive MIAC title and completed their season with a fourth-place finish at the NCAA Central Region meet. Gymnastics posted a 6–1 dual meet record and a second-place finish at the National Collegiate Gymnastics Association (NCGA) West Regional. The women's indoor track and field team finished second and the men fifth at the MIAC championships. 

Did you know . . .

●Nearly 80% of Gustavus students graduate in four years, compared with 56% of students from other Minnesota private colleges; the national average is 17%.

●There are seven choral ensembles and 23 instrumental ensembles, two jazz, four woodwind and three brass ensembles.

●More than 40 percent of Gustavus students volunteer through the Gustavus community service center on a regular basis.

●For student safety, the campus is well-lit, there is 24-hour Safety and Security patrol and escort service, residence halls are locked 24 hours a day, and there are blue light emergency phones throughout campus linked directly to Safety and Security.

●And looking back -- during the college's early years, students were awakened by a bell at 5:45 a.m. and all lights had to be out by 10:30 p.m.

Upcoming events

  • Class of 1954 and 50-Year Club Reunions - May 28 & 29
  • Commencement - May 30
  • Alumni Fund closes - May 31
  • Class reunions on Homecoming & Family Weekend - October 1 & 2