Class of '84
November 1998

15th Anniversary Class

May 28 & 29, 1999

Dear Gustie:

It is hard to believe but we are in a reunion year once again. Personally, I can hardly comprehend how much time has passed since our graduation. Some days it seems like only yesterday; others it seems like so long ago. Nonetheless, next May we will be gathering to celebrate that remarkable day 15 years ago when we officially became Gustavus alumni and set off to leave our marks on the world.

Reunion News

As you can imagine, plans are already underway for our reunion celebration. Ken and I have formed a reunion committee and we have met to discuss ideas and assign duties. In addition, the committee will be making phone calls in the coming weeks to as many of you as we can reach, and in the coming months you’ll receive guest letters from some of our classmates. Committee members will do our best to phone you personally, but if we are unable to reach you, don’t be surprised if you receive a phone call later from a current student (they will be making follow-up phone calls). We want to update you on the reunion, get your news, and find out if you’d like to make a contribution to The Gustavus Fund (the new and improved annual fund program). Here are some of the specifics about our reunion, the committee, and our reunion fundraising goals. We’ll continue to update you in the coming months, but put the dates on your calendar now!

!!!!! Class of ’84 15th-Year Reunion !!!!!!

When/Where: Friday, May 28, 1999, Hotel Sofitel, 8:00 p.m.

Saturday, May 29, 1999, Gustavus Adolphus College

What: Friday: Reunion classes 1954-1989 will take place at the Hotel Sofitel in Bloomington. Classes will have a chance to mingle in a common gathering area, and then as a class we will move to a room where we will have our own program and plenty of time to talk with one another. Hors d’oeuvres will be served and there will be a cash bar.

Saturday: All classes will return to campus on Saturday for the alumni seminars, class luncheons, concerts, the alumni banquet, and Vespers service.

Cost: Friday, about $15 to $25 (exact cost to be determined)

Reunion Committee: Carole Arwidson

  • Gregg Backstrom
  • Ken Ericson
  • Chris Erikstrup
  • Eric Gilhoi
  • Susan Astrup Lundquist
  • Jim O’Neill
  • Keith Paap
  • Sara Brubacher Provart
  • Kathy Sutherland Lutes

Fundraising Goals: 84% participation


If we’re to make our goal of 84 percent, we’ve got a lot of work to do. In case you’re curious, last year the participation rate for our class was 40.7 percent with a total of 197 donors. To achieve 84 percent, we’ll need about 300 of us to make a gift to The Gustavus Fund. The need is great, the time is now, and the opportunity is here. We can make a difference in the life of our college, and in this, our 15th reunion year, what better time than now to contribute to a legacy that allowed us to become a part of the Gustavus family and to reap the benefits of our education. I hope you’ll join us!

Class of ’84 Homepage

Be sure to periodically check out our class homepage for the latest on reunion news. Keith Paap is working on the site (for which we are very grateful!) and it should be up and running soon. As the months go by, we’ll add new informaton and eventually we hope to include an updated list of who’s planning to attend. If you have other ideas for the site, let me know.

Call for Personal Recollections to Share with the Class

Since this is our reunion year, we thought it might be fun to include some personal recollections, words of wisdom, and the like in our class letters. We may even be able to include these in some way at our reunion celebration. So, if you have some thoughts you’d like to share, please pass them along to me. I can be reached by e-mail ( or by mail (Carole Arwidson, 5524 Girard Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55419). We’d love to hear from you!

And, if you’d like to write a guest letter to our class, let me know.

Class News

Since we’re in our reunion year, let’s start the letter out with events and announcements from the lives of our classmates. I’m sure there will be much more news to share once the reunion surveys come back (be sure to fill yours out!) and Phonorama gets underway. For now, here’s the latest:

  • Tracy Bahl (West Simsbury, CT) is a senior vice president with CIGNA Healthcare in Hartford. His wife, Felicia, is a healthcare consultant with Meridian Healthcare.
  • Mike Bishop is the claim manager for National Car Rental in Minneapolis. His wife, Kelly, is a system analyst for Dayton Hudson. They have two boys: Tyler and Timothy. Mike mentioned that on a return flight after a business trip he ran into one of our classmates, Roger Yost. He says they toasted their Gustavus connection and reminisced about the old days. I ran into two Gusties once at the Kosta Boda crystal factory restaurant in Sweden. You never know where you’ll meet Gusties; it is, after all, a small world.
  • Karen (Clodfelter) Blandford (Round Rock, TX) and her husband, Mark, have two children, Lauren (6) and Kristen (3). Karen is a unit manager with Creative Memories, a home-based business. Mark is employed by Dell Computer.
  • Shari McKenzie Campbell (Rochester) graduated from the College of St. Catherine in May with an M.A. in nursing, with an adult nurse practitioner focus. And she was recently inducted in Sigma Theta Tau. Congratulations on the accomplishments! In addition to her regular job in the medical/surgical/transplant ICU at Mayo, Shari also has an adjunct faculty position in the bachelor’s program at Winona State University.
  • Mel Chez wrote to update us on the fact that he and his wife relocated to New York City in 1997. Mel is now working for HSBC Asset Management selling institutional international equities to pension funds. His wife, Jean Anne, works in the advertising industry.
  • Joni Stees Conrad has a new job: She is now a public relations specialist at Concern, a child welfare agency.
  • Lynda (White) Czarnetzki (Eagan) continues in her part-time employment at Minnesota Mutual as a project consultant. She also makes time to serve as a Brownie Girl Scout leader (just reading that brings back memories!). She and her husband, Dean, have three children: Alison (7), Brian (5), and Lauren (2). The family is active in their church, Grace Lutheran Church in Apple Valley (a church whose pastor is a Gustie).
  • Mark Ekman (Albuquerque, NM) is employed by Sandia National Laboratories as a senior member of the technical staff.
  • Jody Erickson and his wife, Shelly, welcomed daughter, Haley Marie, on January 10 of this year. Congratulations on the birth! The family now resides in Eden Prairie. Jody is employed by McDonald’s Corporation.
  • Andrea Estrem (Robbinsdale) is now employed by Maine Consulting Corp.
  • Mary Freeburg (St. Louis Park) is director of MIS/Next Generation Network.
  • Todd Gillingham (Hudson, WI) and his wife, Kristen, announced the birth of their third child—son Jacob Ross. Jacob was born on February 9. Congratulations on the addition to your family!
  • Ed Greise wrote in March to notify us that he and his family have relocated to Bonn, Germany. Ed continues to work for United Health Corporation (Minneapolis Company). On February 1 he became the vice president of Global Consulting for Europe. For your promotion and achievement, we applaud you! Ed says that he, his wife, Kristin, and their son, Alexander (3), are adjusting well and learning Deutsch. They are also expecting a child this fall—congratulations on that news as well!

For anyone wanting to reach Ed, here is the home address and phone number:

Hohenzollernstrasse 14

Bonn Germany 53173

Phone: 49 228 368 1359

  • Ross Gustafson (Golden, CO) is now the technical director for Florida Chemical Company.
  • Tina (Strandvold) was promoted to key customer representative at Coors. Congratulations on the promotion! It is Tina’s job to ensure that distributors get all the information they need and also sets up their VIP tours at the brewery and provides their training.
  • Kelly (Rome) Johnson (DeSoto, TX) and her husband welcomed their fourth child on May 12, 1997: daughter Ashley Caroline. Belated congratulations! In May of this year, the couple relocated their Kwik Kopy Printing Center to a brand new building with over two times the space. They have added a new twin tower press to their equipment list and have been recognized as a leader in digital printing technology. The Johnson’s Kwik Kopy was awarded Best Printer for the four surrounding cities and received the Small Employer of the Year award at the annual Chamber of Commerce banquet. Kudos on the awards!
  • Margaret Sauer Lindberg (St. Louis Park) has a new job; she is now director of marketing at UCare Minnesota.
  • Char Loving (Minneapolis) has left Fallon McElligott and is now employed by Valentine McCormick Ligibel.
  • Susan Astrup Lundquist (Eden Prairie) recently made a big change in her life. She has resigned from her position as director–stores human resources for Dayton Hudson to spend more time with her children (Anna, 4, and John, 2). She is, however, still working for Dayton Hudson as an executive recruiter, doing senior-level executive search three days per week. She says she enjoys the changes—at home and at work. Her husband, Erik ’88, continues to work at Lutheran Brotherhood where he has been for six years.
  • Mike and Dawn (McDougal) Miller (Plymouth) welcomed daughter, McKenna, to the fold on February 8. Congratulations on the birth! Mike has earned a promotion at Lutheran Brotherhood; he is now manager of field compensation for the MIS Department. Kudos on the promotion! Dawn is the clinical training director of a new music therapy internship program with the Hospice and Oncology Programs through Methodist Hospital/HealthSystem Minnesota.
  • Vicky Burmeister Mitchell (Wayzata) has a new job; she is now with Hewlett-Packard.
  • Mark Munson (Marion, IL) was recently promoted to executive assistant to the Warden at the United States Penitentiary in Marion. Congratulations on the promotion!
  • Steven Musser (Plymouth) is an environmental consultant for McNeal.
  • Pete and Cassandra (Weltsch) Nelson continue to make their home in Oakdale, Minnesota. Pete is employed by Offerman and Company, Inc. and Cassandra is now employed by United Health Care.
  • Mary Zalk Neumann (Prior Lake) also has a new job. She is now employed as the sales and marketing manager at The Capital Grille. Her husband, Dean, is employed by Care Providers of Minnesota.
  • Kayvon Riggi (Plymouth) was inducted March 19 as a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons during ceremonies at the Academy’s 65th annual meeting in New Orleans. He was one of 648 new fellows inducted (the Academy has 17,000 active members). Congratulations on the honor!
  • Connie Sackett (Minneapolis) works for Health System Minnesota in pediatrics.
  • Charles Schultz (Minneapolis) is another classmate with a promotion to share. He has been promoted to litigation manager at General Casualty with Farmers Insurance Group. Kudos to you, too!
  • Jill Sherman has relocated abroad. This past January she moved to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where she is working for Marie Stopes International on a UNFPA-funded National Reproductive Health Program. If you want to get in touch, here’s her address (the new e-mail is noted below):

Jill Sherman/MSI

PO Box 113

Villa No. 3, Road No. 75

Sraas Chak 12201

Phnom Penh, CAMBODIA

  • Kathy Lepeska Sitzman (Minnetonka) is working for ReliaStar Financial Corporation and her husband, Peter, works for the ReliaStar Foundation.
  • Rebecca Eggert Thoen (Dawson) and her husband, Marc, are proud parents, thanks to the arrival of son, Christian Marc, on September 17, 1997. Belated congratulations! Both Rebecca and her husband work for the Dawson-Boyd school district. Rebecca was nominated for Who’s Who in America for Teaching—congrats on the acknowledgment!
  • Michael Thyen continues as chief of anesthesia at District One Hospital in Faribault. He is also a deputy investigator with the Rice County Coroner’s Office.
  • Dave Torgerson (Denver, CO) is currently working for HCIA as an orthopedic and neuroscience hospital consultant based in Denver.
  • Carol Tweeten (Forest City, IA) and her husband, Doug, welcomed Luke Timothy on February 6. Congratulations! He joins brothers Ryan (9) and Drew (5). Carol continues to work as a CPA for D.K. Arndt, P.C. in Forest City; Doug is self-employed in farming.
  • Michele Coy Umsted (Mantorville) has a new job. She is now assistant supervisor at Mayo Inventory Center, Materials Management, at Mayo Medical Center.
  • Alan Vogt (Newton, MA) is project manager with Bay State Computer Group in Boston. Alan was married January 6, 1996, to Deborah Conklin, and on June 1, 1997, the couple welcomed daughter Andrea Marie. Congrats all around!
  • Julie Anderson Wawczak (Roselle, IL) and her husband, Tom, welcomed a son, Benjamin Jerome, on May 22, 1997. Belated congrats!
  • Kevin Whitaker (Plymouth) and his wife, Anita, also became parents in 1997, thanks to the arrival of son, Justin, born on July 11. Belated congrats to you also! Kevin is employed by McGladrey & Pullen; Anita works for Whitaker Communications.

Campus News

Now that you’re caught up on what’s happening in the lives of our classmates, I thought you might like to catch up on what’s happening on the hill. A tremendous amount of progress has been made since last spring’s tornado and it’s wonderful to see the changes and feel the renewed vitality of everyone on campus.

I do have some sad news from our alma mater to share. Professor Ron Christianson died in early September after a long battle with cancer. I thought you might like to read the obituary from the September 11 Star Tribune.

The 1998-99 academic year opened with a record enrollment of 2,470 full-time students (compared with the previous record of 2,389 set in 1988), including a record 700 incoming students (compared to 648 of 1987). Contributing to the record enrollment is the stable 94 percent full-time student retention rate. Students returned to a campus that has been newly landscaped with 400 trees planted last spring and nurtured over the summer. They also discovered that 95% of all repairs made necessary by the tornado of March 29 are now completed. They returned to find Johnson Hall gone as it proved to be "beyond repair," but they also were greeted by a new College View Apartment addition, which houses 92 upper-class students, and the recently purchased Jefferson Avenue apartments (now known as Arbor View), which houses 60 upper-class students. In addition to new carpeting, painting, and furnishings, the campus is sporting 300 new state of the art computers for students and faculty, 28 new Steinway pianos (making us a member of a very elite circle of "All Steinway" campuses), 13 new high-tech multimedia systems for classrooms, new and upgraded outdoor and indoor athletic facilities, and new scientific equipment.

What remains to be done? The Prairie View Residence Hall, was opened in October, and houses 60 students. It is located west of Schaefer Fine Arts Center. Physically and symbolically the repair/restoration era ended with the placement of the spire and the cross back on the top of Christ Chapel. The spire went up in sections over a two-day period and the cross was set on Thursday, October 22.

Students also noted the beginning stages of construction on the new Campus Center. This project, part of our strategic plan, was accelerated by the storm. The official groundbreaking ceremony took take place Monday, October 19. This $18.6 million, 51,000 square foot construction project will double the size of the Dining Service Building, providing students, faculty and staff with expanded and improved dining, meeting and office spaces. The Dining Room will, appropriately, be named for Evelyn Young ’33, longtime director of the Dining Service at Gustavus. In progress also is an addition to the Melva Lind Interpretive Center to house the Department of Environmental Studies.

National Rankings

US News and World Report continues to give Gustavus high ranking. This fall’s issue again placed Gustavus in the top half of the 162 national liberal arts colleges in the country. Gustavus is one of four colleges in Minnesota to be in this category. The others are Carleton, Macalester and St. Olaf. The other ELCA schools in addition to Gustavus and St. Olaf are Gettysburg, Muhlenberg and Augustana (IL). Many of the schools with which you are familiar are classified as either a "national" or a "regional" college. National liberal arts colleges have the most selective admission policy, recruit nationally and offer most of their degrees in the liberal arts. Regional liberal arts colleges are less selective in admitting students and grant fewer than 40% of their degrees in the liberal arts.

US News further honored Gustavus by ranking the College third nationally (out of 90 schools) in operating efficiency. This ranking measures academic quality and dollars spent to deliver that quality. Gustavus was the only Minnesota college ranked in this comparison of national liberal arts colleges.

Newsweek magazine’s college publication again listed Gustavus as a "buried treasure." These are colleges that are known as "Hot Schools, Cool Spots." The magazine describes Gustavus as a place where "Personal attention rules--can’t slide by here." Other buried treasures include: Davidson College, Davidson, NC; Grinnell College, Grinnell, IA; Pomona College, Claremont, CA; Trinity University, San Antonio, TX; and College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, VA. Good company, indeed.

Children of alumni continue to be honored for their academic achievement and potential when they enroll at Gustavus. The Alumni Scholarship of $2,500 (renewable to $10,000 over four years) is awarded to children and grandchildren of alumni with high school grade point averages of 3.5 or better, or SAT scores of 1170 or an ACT of 26. This fall Gustavus welcomed to campus 70 new entering students who are children of alumni. Sixty-seven legacy students were awarded an Alumni Scholarship. This number includes 54 children of alumni and 13 grandchildren of alumni.

Nobel Conference XXXIV

Virus: The Human Connection was October 6 & 7. The Nobel Conference magazine was again inserted in the August Minnesota Monthly magazine and sent to the entire Gustavus mailing list.


(Gusties In Volunteer Endeavors), a day of community service, was a huge success for another year. Alumni, parents and friends gathered on Saturday, October 3 to work together in the spirit of service to better their communities. An impact was made around the country as nearly 1,000 Gusties worked in nine cities including: Atlanta, GA; Boston, MA; Duluth, MN; Fargo, ND; Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN; Orlando, FL; Saint Peter, MN; Seattle, WA and Washington, DC.

Recycle your Quarterly

after reading each issue of the Gustavus Quarterly, we encourage you to "recycle" the magazine by taking it to your place of business or worship and sharing it with others. Spread the good word about Gustavus!

Alumni Chapters

will be meeting in cities around the country near you! Mark your calendars today for the following Alumni Association chapter visits: Chicago, November 14; Atlanta, November 19; Washington, DC, November 20; Boston, November 21; Denver, February 1 (Gustavus Band concert); Fargo, Feb. 20; Seattle, March 5; San Francisco, March 6; Los Angeles, March 7; Phoenix, March 8; and Sun City, March 9.

That brings this letter to a close. I hope to hear from many of you in the coming months (thank you in advance for news updates, contributions to The Gustavus Fund, and recollections). Be sure to mark your calendar for next year’s reunion (it promises to be a fun and memorable event!). You don’t want to miss it. See you soon!

Carole Arwidson

1984 Co-Class Agent

Class of 1984 E-Mail Addresses

Following are Class of ’84 E-Mail Addresses. You may want to check those you’re keeping track of since there have been some updates. Also, if your address is incorrect, or if would like it included, let me know. I can be reached at:

• Gustavus Alumni Office:

• Carole Arwidson:


• Shari McKenzie Campbell:

• Mel Chez:

• Peter Ford:

• Lynn (Fasching) Giles:

• Scott Hagen:

• David Huls:

• Joe Janasz:

• Ann (Engelmann) Johnson:

• Jim Kapoun:

• Damon Larson:

• Eva (Gustafsson) Lindh:

• Steve Mattson:

• Lois (Dobberstein) Meacham:

• Vicky (Burmeister) Mitchell:

• Jim Olsen:

• John Owens:

• Keith Paap:

• Pavel Pojdl:

• Annika Ramsköld:

• Theresa Rocker: Theresa Rocker/CAM/

• Jill Sherman:

• Carin Thomas: