Class of '91
May 2005

Dear classmates,

Spring has finally arrived (at least in Indiucky).  Time to reflect on new beginnings and achieving closure on past commitments.  This spring I have renewed my commitment to being a better golfer, and I paid up on our annual pledge to the Gustavus Fund.  If you made a pledge to the Annual Fund, now is the time to honor that commitment and pony up the dough before the end of May!  This year might be the time to try the monthly installment plan for paying your pledge.  If you didn’t make a pledge, you can still contribute.  Follow this link to make a gift using your credit card:


The campus has been a hotbed of activity with all of the normal spring activities:  spring play, All’s Well That Ends Well, played in Anderson Theatre.  The Gustavus and Christ Chapel choirs have done their spring concerts.  Men’s golf finished 18th in the NCAA Championships.  Remember the Gusties were NCAA Division III winners last year.  They were invited in March to play winners of Division I and II at a tournament in Houston, TX.  In women’s tennis two Gusties, Tara Houlihan and Lyndsey Palen, defeated their own teammates to win the NCAA Doubles Championship in Kalamazoo, Michigan.  Honors Day on May 7 featured the honors won by 870 students.  This high number is what one would expect given the number of high caliber students on campus.  The Board of Trustees met and approved fundraising to begin which will permit moving the building of a new football stadium immediately to the west of Lund Center.  Over 20 years ago, when Olin Hall was built, the College agreed to move the football field.  Now, plans are underway to build an additional academic building on the space occupied by the football field.  This building will be part of a new “West Mall” leading westward from Christ Chapel.  There are already three buildings on the south side of the mall:  Olin Hall, the International Student House, and a new residence hall (Southwest Hall), which will be completed by the start of the fall semester 2005.  Old Main renovation is proceeding on schedule.  This $4 million project will also be ready for the start of the fall semester.

The College held its annual MAYDAY! Peace Conference, titled "Energy for Peace," with speakers Mark Hertsgaard and Terry Tempest Williams, on Wednesday, May 4.  Hertsgaard is an accomplished author in the field of environmental study and an environmental correspondent for The Nation.  His latest book, The Eagle's Shadow:  Why America Fascinates and Infuriates the World, has placed him among numerous independent journalists and critics with whom the Bush Administration must reconcile in respect to environmental policy.  Williams is regarded as one of the nation's best speakers on the environment and a contributing author to such publications as The New Yorker and The Nation.  Williams is best known for her book, Refuge: An Unnatural History of Family and Place, in which she brings the subject of environment close to home by chronicling her mother's fatal battle with ovarian cancer, which Williams attributes to nuclear testing carried out in the Nevada desert near her home in Salt Lake City.  The MAYDAY! Peace Conference was established by Florence and the late Raymond Sponberg ’37 of North Mankato.

A very interesting campus story centers on Senior Johanna Johnson who will performed her final oboe recital accompanied by Joe Johnson of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra.  When Johanna was a passionate 16-year-old oboe player, she was diagnosed with lymphoma.  As part of an opportunity made available to her by the Make-a-Wish Foundation, she had a chance to realize a dream of not only rehearsing with the New York Philharmonic, but to also sit in with the orchestra during a performance, wear a black formal dress and hold her instrument.  She met Joe Robinson, principal oboist for the Orchestra forming a friendship that continued as her musical skills flourished and her cancer receded.  That evening, Robinson presented her with a new instrument and Johanna played alongside Robinson.  Robinson described her performance as “stellar.”  Since the first meeting at the Lincoln Center, Robinson arranged for Johanna to attend a music summer camp and has played in her hometown of Grass Valley, CA.  They keep in touch often.  Robinson stayed on campus for one week, serving as an artist-in-residence and performing with the Gustavus Symphony Orchestra.

Mark Anderson ’66, Dean of Admission, is plowing new ground to increase opportunities for the gift of a Gustavus education for students from other cultures.  Through the efforts of an alumna in New York City, we have had six first-generation college prospects apply and be accepted for admission:

Ø      Julissy.  Mother emigrated from Honduras.  College prep courses.  3.5 GPA

Ø      Benjamin.  Originally from Ghana.  Solid S.A.T. scores. Summer internships at Smith Barney brokerage house in Manhattan.

Ø      Jerry.  Ranks in top 10% of class.  Ethnic background is Aztec.

Ø      Kira.  Family comes from Ecuador.  Exceptional test scores.  Interested in nursing.

Ø      Stephanie.  Top 5% of class.  Hispanic.

Ø      Shana.  Determined young Black woman interested in studying sociology.  Good test scores with immense potential.

While we have some 120 students from diverse backgrounds who are mostly from Minnesota, successful matriculation of these additional students would move us forward in our efforts to diversify the student body at Gustavus.  Mark intends to recruit a similar group each of the next four years.  So, if any of you have an interest in “adopting” a student, I would ask you to consider a gift of $5,000 in 2005 and each of the following three years.  A fun and meaningful relationship could be the result.

The Gustavus Alumni Association has announced 2005 award recipients.  The Greater Gustavus Award to George Torrey ’55 for his lifetime volunteer service and philanthropy to the College. Distinguished Alumni Citations to G. Barry Anderson ’76, Apple Valley, MN, associate justice, Minnesota Supreme Court; Deanna Nelson ’64, Cary, NC, president/founder, BioLink Life Sciences, Inc.; Rick Webb ’73, Edina, MN, owner of Ciao Bella, Zelo and Bacio Restaurants; and John Wirth ’75, Pacific Palisade, CA, writer/executive producer, Paramount Studios.  First Decade Awards to Joe Gaugler ’95, Lexington, KY, assistant professor, Department of Behavioral Science, University of Kentucky College of Medicine; Debbie Lightly Mascaro ’95, Fargo, ND, research scientist, North Dakota State University Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering.

Upcoming Events

  • Class of 1955 and 50-Year Club Reunions – May 27 & 28
  • Commencement – May 29
  • Alumni Fund closes – May 31
  • Reunions on Homecoming – October 7 & 8
  • Nurses Reunion – October 8


The class news was sent to a different author and we didn’t have time to collaborate on putting this letter together (we wanted to get it in the mail before the close of the fund year), so we’ll save it for the next letter.  If you have news to share please send it to our email address and we’ll be sure to put it in the next one!

The Annual Fund closes on May 31!  As a class, our participation is down this year.  Please take a few moments to go online and give a little or a lot, but participate―even $5 helps Gustavus in its mission.  We have much about which we can be proud.  The academic program is stronger than when we were there and, quite frankly, I think the students (as a whole) are even brighter (if you think it possible) than when we were there.  The opportunities for research are so prevalent.  The Christ Chapel program is strong and students participate in a variety of opportunities for worship and study and strengthening their Christian faith.  Gustavus is worthy of your gift!

So, send your check today. . .or, even better, go on line ( and make your gift on-line with your credit card. 


Christopher and Kim

1991 Co-class Agents