Class of '86
October 2004

Dear Class of ’86,

Here’s hoping everyone’s doing well, and you were able to maximize your summer fun.  Here in Minnesota, we had the typical strange weather―there are no oxymorons when it comes to weather―this summer:  relatively cool, and adequate rain―except for when it was unbearably hot and dry (which was all of two days).  In either case, the entire summer feels like it was nine days long.  The Fourth of July seems like it was eons ago, and the state fair has come and gone―with nothing to show but a few extra pounds of cheese curds and pronto pups secured somewhere around our midriffs.

A lot has happened since our last class letter (like the thawing of the glaciers and the passing of the dinosaur).  Nevertheless, I’ll try to take you back to life on the Hill for a few moments and share with you all the interesting high points of life at Gustavus.

An extremely important milestone was reached last winter when Gustavus exceeded its “Building a Greater Gustavus” capital campaign goal of $100 million.  Most of you played an important role in this accomplishment.  The “Building" campaign as you know is a massive endowment effort to ensure that Gustavus is well positioned far into the 21st century.  A lot was lost six years ago in the tornado, and it’s sad to lose parts of our history, but so much more was resurrected from the damage in terms of buildings, landscaping, long-term campus plans…and most importantly, a renewed commitment by alumni to ensure that future generations experience the same amazing educational, social and cultural experiences that we had (ok, minus the leaky water tower and four-lane swimming pool in the basement of Alumni Hall).  Aside from buildings, the campaign is providing scholarships and funding new programs.  One such program is the Center for Vocational Reflection.  The Center assists staff and students in identifying their goals, strengths and purpose in life through education, service and faith.

One of the newest campus additions will be a beautiful 200-student residence hall near the new Carlson International Center (southwest of the football field) that should open next spring.   I’m also happy to report that Old Main is undergoing major new renovations while preserving its rich historical design.

Sports fan?  As many of you know, Gustavus has been doing very well over the last couple years in many sports, often going to national semi-finals and championships.  One of the biggest coups this past year was the men’s golf team, which won the NCAA DIVISION III NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP for the first time in Gustavus history.  Overall, the men’s athletic program won the MIAC All-Sports competition for the first time since 1975 if I have my numbers right…  The women’s athletic program came in second place within the MIAC.  Needless to say, for those of you tracking Gustie football and basketball games, there have been some real nail-biters!

As most of you know, the people of Gustavus are our most valuable asset, and several recent awards are worth mentioning…  G. Barry Anderson ’76 was appointed by Governor Pawlenty to the Minnesota Supreme Court.  And Steve Wilkinson, a pillar of the Men’s tennis team, was recognized last spring for his many accomplishments within the Gustavus sports community and his contribution to the campus itself.  This year retiring professor Don Ostrom was also honored for his decades of contributions to the political science community.  You likely know that Gustavus has a new president:  Jim Peterson who was inaugurated last April.  But did you know he’s also a Gustie grad from the class of 1964?  The newest graduates from this past summer number 588 including Dan Brown who was swept over a waterfall in Belize and nearly drowned.  His story was covered in the Star Tribune this past summer.

A little closer to our generation, Pete Krause ’87 (sorry, but I knew him before anyone in Hollywood called him ‘Peter’) received a Distinguished Alumni Citation in 2004.  Pete has been in everything from TV comedies to major movies (The Truman Show) to HBO’s big hit Six Feet Under.  Wow, as a fellow Kappa, I never thought Pete was the Hollywood type.  Kudos to him….  Even closer, Mike Bryant was recently listed as one of "40 Top Super Lawyers in Minnesota" by Law & Politics.  On a sad note, THE Lloyd “Holly” Hollingsworth ’36 (the man behind the name on our football stadium) passed away in August in St. Peter at the age of 92.

This year, classes began on September 8th with approximately 700 first-year students, 2,500 in all.  While there are lots of new traditions in store for students this year, many of the standards still remain such as the President’s Ball and the Square Dance.  And don’t forget the world renowned Nobel Conference, which this year…sadly…was on "The Science of Aging."

All of this great stuff contributes to Gustavus being ranked (again) by US News & World Report as one of the Top 100 Liberal Arts Colleges in the U.S.

So let’s get to class news!!  There’s always lots of interesting stuff going on with the Class of ’86

  • Lana Balach is living in Massachusetts these days with her husband, Luc Van Anderlecht, and their two children Alexandre and Katia.
  • Tom Illies lives right here in the sunny Twin Cities with his wife, Tracey (Bowers ’89).  Tom is a division-marketing manager with Farmers Insurance.
  • Tim Edstrom lives outside of Chicago in Algonquin, IL and works for Met Life as an associate sales manager.
  • Amy Sommers Buck probably had one of the more interesting Gustie encounters this past year.  Last fall, while Amy and her husband were in New Delhi, India adopting their new daughter, Tanushri, they ran into a group of Gustie students at the YMCA Tourist Hostel in New Delhi.
  • Jody Johnson Leyda and her husband, Butch ’87, live in Hudson, WI and stay busy raising their two kids Savannah and August.  Somewhere in the midst of that, Butch also manages to practice family medicine at the Hudson Hospital & Clinic.
  • Katrina Ritter Krueger lives in Boise, ID and works for Novartis Pharmaceuticals as a sales consultant.
  • Chris Ziebell lives in Austin, Texas and seems to believe that there are more than 24 hours in a day―based on his professional activities:  managing partner at Emergency Service Partners; director of emergency medicine at Seton Northwest Hospital; AND chief of staff at Seton Northwest Hospital.  Whew!
  • Megan Genest Tarnow is a self-employed principal with the Mobius Group, which provides accounting solutions to not-for-profits and small businesses.  She and her husband, Tom, are also raising three boys in St. Paul, MN.
  • Dan Murray is still the director of research for the American Transportation Research Institute; lives in Oakdale, MN with his wife, Linda; and recently had Sam, his second son.  Dan was recently appointed to the University of Minnesota's ITS Institute’s Board of Directors.
  • Mike Dicke, who works on projects he can’t tell you about for the SEC, married Jenny Cohn in San Francisco this past June.
  • Bill Belvedere works with classmate, Todd Hysjulien, at their own accounting firm (“Belvedere & Hysjulien, PA” of course).  Bill and Jeni have two children, Jack and Rachel.
  • Jeff Elder works at North Memorial Medical Center as an emergency room physician, and lives in Chanhassen.  I recently saw a presentation by Dr. Pat Lilja on all the cutting edge programs that North Memorial is involved in.
  • Boy, my info on John Rau is a bit old, but I believe he’s still living in Lake Villa, IL with his wife, Lynnae (Pletan ’89) and their three children Erica, Melissa and Kevin.  I think John is still the director of international marketing for Abbott Lab’s pediatric nutrition business.  On September 11, 2001, John was in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia (Osama’s hometown).  Yikes! (John:  on September 6, 2001, I was on the 65th floor of the World Trade Center, north tower.  I think everyone has a story related to that terrible day.)
  • Scott Dingman is a principal with LPL Financial Services, a planning and investment firm.  He lives with his wife, Cheryl, and children, Adam and Emily, in Richmond, Virginia.
  • I’m told Todd Andre graduated a little over a year ago from the University of Phoenix with a Master's in counseling.  Todd, we need an update!
  • Doug Porter, and his lovely wife, Sue (Jordan; ’87), live in Edina and had a baby boy, Matthew, a year ago on June 21.  Belated Congratulations!!
  • I do know that Bryce Hallowell and his wife, Laurie, live in Minnetrista, and I think he’s still working for Alliant Techsystems, running their external communications, BUT I’ll need Bryce to confirm all that.  Bryce?
  • Jodie Boulet-Daughters and her radiologist husband, Tom, still live in CA, and are still making lots of good-tasting wine under the label “Consilience.”  Word has it that distribution of the label is increasing in Minnesota – so ask for it by name.
  • Doug Williams is manager of Shared Financial Services at Alliant Techsystems (do you see Bryce??) and lives in Plymouth, MN.
  • Tim Mettler is a senior analyst/programmer for patient management at the Mayo Clinic and lives nearby in Byron, MN.  Hopefully Tim is staying drier (weather-wise) than his neighbors in Austin, MN.

Please forgive me for any incorrect information listed above, and send me updates so I can get it right!  Another thing I’ve never done before is list our “missing” classmates; those who have dropped off our radar screen – by choice or accident.  If you have any information on the following people, please send me or the Alumni Office an e-mail.  ( or (

Scott M. Allen

Katie Lee Anderson

E. Kwaku "Eddy" Andoh

Susan Skalbeck Berenz

David A. Burns

Cindy Cox

Luann M. Dietz

Julie A. Dressel

Craig R. Johnson

Julie A. Mason

Nancy V. Rydland

Timothy S. Schiavo

David Schmidt

Gretchen A. Wagoner

Kristin L. Westrum

Judith A. Young

That’s about all the news that’s fit to print…or at least that we have time for right now.  Hope you continue to stay happy and healthy and, of course, warm (for those of you above the 40th parallel).  Please keep me posted on your goings-on and we’ll do our best to keep the Gustie communication system vibrant and up-to-date.


Dan Murray

1986 Co-class Agent

P. S.  The Alumni Office will add some campus news here:

143rd Academic Year Begins

Classes began Sept. 8 with 657 first-year Gustavus students and 2,500 in all.  Long-standing orientation traditions such as the Square Dance and President’s Banquet have been joined by newer traditions like Gustie Greeter Orientation Groups and the Reading in Common program.  These newer programs were created to provide a more meaningful transition and to encourage students to meet others outside their residence hall.

Nobel Conference, The Science of Aging

The 40th Anniversary of the Nobel Conference was on the Science of Aging.  The campus hosted over 6,000 guests October 5-6 to learn about the research molecular biologist are conducting on longevity, Alzheimer’s, and delaying debilitating disease and how this impacts life expectancy, the economy, and the health-care system.

New Residence Hall

Work crews have been busy this summer and fall constructing a new residence hall on campus.  The goal is to have the building enclosed before winter.  The building, located southwest of the football field, will house 200 students in suites and apartments and is scheduled to open for fall 2005.

Gustie Pages

Looking for a dentist, doctor, lawyer, pastor, realtor, and much more?  Make it a Gustie!  The Gustie Pages is an online database of Gusties who have submitted information about their profession.  Use the Gustavus network to meet your needs or submit your professional information if you would like other Gusties to be your customers.

Athletics Hall of Fame

The Gustavus Adolphus College Athletics Department has chosen eight individuals for induction into its Athletics Hall of Fame.  The 2004 inductees include Lori Allen ’88 (golf), Jim Chalin ’76 (basketball), Bruce Edwards ’77 (ice hockey), Barb Jaeger ’88 (soccer), Dean Kraus ’89 (football), Pachi Lopez ’71 (soccer), Greg Peterson ’88 (golf), and Gary Reinholtz (long-time athletic trainer, benefactor).  This group will be honored at the Athletics Hall of Fame Banquet, which will be held in Alumni Hall at 7:30 pm on Saturday, October 16.

Extraordinary Place

Gustavus is once again ranked among the top 100 liberal arts colleges in the nation in U.S. News and World Report's annual college rankings.  Gustavus is one of five Minnesota colleges in the top 100 national liberal arts colleges for overall quality (Carleton, Macalester, St. Olaf, Gustavus, St. John’s).  The ranking groups schools into categories based on a national educational classification that includes national liberal arts colleges, national doctoral universities (University of Minnesota, St. Thomas), regional master's degree-granting universities (Hamline, St. Catherine’s, Bethel, Augsburg), and comprehensive regional colleges (Concordia-St Paul).

Upcoming Events

  • Charlotte Area Gustavus Gathering – October 30
  • Christmas in Christ Chapel: “Seasons of Promise” – December 3-5
  • St. Lucia Festival – December 9
  • Class of 1954 and 50 Year Club Reunion – May 27-28
  • Class Reunions for 1960, 1965, 1970, 1975, 1980, 1985, 1990, 1995, 2000 – October 7-9, 2005