Class of '97
February 2000

Inside this Newsletter



Well, January Term just passed, and during Touring Week the Choir toured Texas, the Band went to Florida, the Gymnastics Team went to Greece and Italy, the Tennis team went to Australia, and profs were taking advantage of the time to take some students overseas. The students returned from Touring Week to find a fully completed Campus Center, the POs are new, and rumor has it, that everyone has their own. Health Circus looks to be legit, even has a new, fresh, sterile smell. Many administrators have made the move from the admin building over to the new center.


  • Chris Anderson is a student at William Mitchell College of Law.
  • Mara Berkland graduated from the University of Denver in August 1998 with an MA in human communication. he is now pursuing her Ph.D. in legal and intercultural communication at the University of Utah.
  • Julie Buerkle is attending Moorhead State University for the Master of Science in Counseling and Student Affairs program.
  • Erica Ciesielski is currently attending the Art Institute for Graphic Design in Houston, TX. She is also employed as the marketing assistant for the Art Institute.
  • Chris Choukalas finished his MS in Psychology at Iowa State last April. Chris also had the opportunity to present (and hopefully publish) some of his research at the American Psychological Association Convention this past summer.
  • Heidi Friedrich Martin is currently student teaching and getting her master’s in teaching.
  • Matthew Martin is a student at Luther Seminary.
  • Jean Merrill is working as a teaching assistant (for Freshman Composition) in the English Dept. at UW-Madison while pursuing her Ph.D. in English literature, specializing in Renaissance literature.
  • Lisa Mueller received her Master of science in counseling and student personnel from Minnesota State University in Mankato in May 1999.
  • Adam Palazzari is a medical student at the University of Minnesota.
  • Antony Sargent is finishing his master’s degree in computer science at the University of Wisconsin- Madison.
  • Melissa Stirn is a graduate student at the University of Minnesota – Humphrey Institute of Public Policy.
  • Darcee Van Houten graduated with a master’s in sports health care from Arizona School of Health Sciences, a division of Kirksville Osteopathic Medicine, in Phoenix, AZ. Darcee has accepted a position as an athletic trainer for Via Christi Regional Medical Center in Wichita, KS.
  • Katie Durfee Zabell is a graduate student in structural biology at Purdue University.


  • Jill Buhse Anderson and husband, Todd, are working hard to start a career in music. They have a band, My Apartment, that is on a short hiatus. They have recorded a CD that they are currently selling. Look for My Apartment again sometime soon! Jill also was promoted to Buyer for Music at Best Buy Co.
  • Carrie Bauer is teaching 5th grade at Cannon Falls School.
  • Adam Beduhn is a computer consultant for Tek Systems.
  • Sara Machel Beach has moved back from Germany and is now living in Burnsville. She is now working at American Express as a broker.
  • Kate Blanchard is working for Big Brothers/Big Sisters as a case manager.
  • Chris Cagle is an Institutional Trading Associate at Piper Jaffray.
  • Matt Cords is working for the Minnesota Wild.
  • Carrie Swanson Enstad is a teacher for Minnetonka Public Schools.
  • Andy Feyder and wife, Rebecca, are in Honiara, Solomon Islands, South Pacific working for the Peace Corps.
  • Jen Gallus completed her master’s degree program from the University of Minnesota in Occupational Therapy and is working for Northeast Metro Intermediate School district.
  • Andy Gunsaullus is working for Prudential in the Policy Owner Relations department. He is also a part time manager for Vertical Endeavors rock climbing gym in St. Paul.
  • Alison Rucinski Goodwin is working at 3M headquarters in Maplewood, MN, in the tax department as a tax analyst.
  • Jen Gould is working at 3M headquarters in Maplewood, MN in the Commercial Graphics Division as an advanced accountant.
  • Jane Haase Hasse is a manager for C.H. Robinson.
  • Ryan Hasse is a software consultant.
  • Kristin Hensrud is working as a physician’s assistant at the Quello Clinic in West Bloomington.
  • Tonsha McPherson Hokanson is teaching 8th grade phys. ed in Waconia.
  • Shawn Kirsch was promoted to advanced regulatory affairs chemist at 3M.
  • Amy Lavin is a buyer at Fingerhut and going to school at the University of St. Thomas pursuing her MBA.
  • Josh Leal was named Coach of the Year for the Minnesota Junior Hockey League.
  • Amanda Marine is teaching 6, 7, & 8th grades at Powell Middle School in Powell, WY.
  • Gretchen Nelson is working for GMAC-RFC in Bloomington as a web content editor in marketing.
  • Trisha Niemi is a nurse at Children’s Hospital (Minneapolis) in the hematology/oncology unit.
  • Kari Wagoner Palazzari is an independent communications consultant.
  • Kristi Paulsen is a programmer analyst II for Health Partners Research Foundation in Bloomington.
  • Sara Nelson Perfetti is an editorial assistant at MBI Publishing Company.
  • Marsha Pinney is working at Immanuel St. Joseph’s Hospital in Mankato.
  • Kristin Martineau Prentice works as a financial analyst for Ecolab
  • Christopher Roberts is a computing consultant at Site Genie, LLC.
  • Daphne Gries Roberts also works for Site Genie LLC.
  • Brian Rollig is an English teacher for Sobriety High School in Oakdale. Sobriety High is for chemically dependant adolescents wanting to complete high school in a safe, drug and alcohol free environment. Brian is also pursuing his teaching license and MA at the University of St. Thomas part-time.
  • Shannon Siefken, Longmont, CO, is working for Melles Griot as an Electro-Optical Laser Engineer.
  • Nathan Spande works for Epic Systems.
  • Emily Sanvick Thompson is a toddler lead teacher at Wonderland Childcare.
  • Stefanie Tucker, Minneapolis, is working for Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP as a senior auditor.
  • Holly Wangsness is an account executive for in Minneapolis.


  • Carrie Bauer and Fred Schliep are engaged to be married on Oct. 6, 2001.
  • Rachel Brekken and John Urosevich ’96 were married on Oct. 30, 1999 in Christ Chapel.
  • Julie Buerkle and Matt Radniecki are engaged to be married on May 6, 2000 in New York Mills, MN.
  • Katie Detmer and Ryan Harnetiaux were married in Spokane, Washington on Dec. 18, 1999.
  • Andy Feyder and Rebecca Nelson ’99 were married on Sept. 18, 1999.
  • Andy Gunsaullus and Shawn Severson were married on August 20, 1999.
  • Sarah Marohn and Nathan Miller are engaged to be married on Oct. 21, 2000 in Christ Chapel.
  • Elaine Nelson and Justin Peik were engaged over Christmas and plan to get married Oct. 14, 2000.
  • Zach Nye and Dawn Durre ’98 were married Oct. 9, 1999.
  • Kristi Paulsen and husband, Kirk, were married on July 17, 1999.
  • Tina Smith and Ralph Walker were engaged in Dec. 1999.


Please consider this opportunity to contribute to Gustavus. With the Campus Center completed, new projects are already on the horizon. A new Outdoor Track & Soccerstadium will be erected this summer, along with a stellar new International Complex!More than ever, the College is putting its best foot forward to provide a great experience for Gusties, and these improvements rely heavily on alumni giving to make this happen!

Other Campus News

Gustavus fared well in two recently released national rankings that affirm its mission of preparing students for "fulfilling lives of leadership and service in society." Gustavus is the #1 small college in the Midwest for the number of its alumni that currently serve as Peace Corps volunteers. With 18 Gustavus alumni now in the Peace Corps, Gustavus ranks sixth in the national "Top 10 Peace Corps Small Colleges and Universities" list, moving up from 12th last year. This list comprises institutions that have less than 5,000 undergraduates. Gustavus is one of five Minnesota colleges named to the list of 30. The College also ranked 14th in the nation among baccalaureate institutions for the number of students it sends overseas. The annual ranking, released in December by the Institute of International Education in its "Open Doors 1998-99" report, was based on study abroad statistics from the 1997-98 academic year. Gustavus was one of six Minnesota private colleges to make the list of 20, making Minnesota the most active study-abroad state in the nation. During the 1997-98 school year, 286 Gustavus students traveled and studied abroad. Approximately 30 percent of Gustavus' graduating seniors have a study abroad experience.

If you can not make it back to campus, but want to stay connected, check out the Internet site at The college is thrilled to recently have hired a web coordinator who has been busy updating the Gustavus home page. Look for more changes to alumni services on the web coming this spring.

Members Of The New Millenium: Knowing that we are in a technological age, we want to encourage all alumni to get involved and get online. If you have access to a computer and the internet, we hope you will check out the Gustavus Alumni Association homepage regularly. We publish information about upcoming events, post class letters, provide information about the Alumni Office, list e-mail addresses of alumni and more. Check us out under the alumni section at

We are planning on corresponding on a regular basis with all alumni who have e-mail addresses. Please send a message to so we can get you on the list. (Be sure to keep us posted on any e-mail address changes, also.)

You are invited and encouraged to attend these upcoming alumni events:

  • Seattle G.I.V.E. project February 19 and Seattle Chapter gathering on March 2
  • Bay Chapter gathering March 4
  • San Diego Chapter gathering March 6
  • Los Angeles Chapter gathering March 7
  • Helen and Paul Baumgartner, Gustavus music faculty will perform two piano recitals in the Twin Cities on March 19, 7:00 p.m. at Wayzata Community Church, and on April 9, 10:00 a.m. at Cross of Glory Lutheran Church, Brooklyn Center.
  • Brainerd Lakes Chapter event with Jim Gilbert ’60 on April 13
  • Class of 1950, 50 Year Club, and War Years reunions - May 27-28

A reminder that all other reunion classes (1955, 1960, 1965, 1970, 1975, 1980, 1985, 1990 and 1995) will have their reunions at Homecoming on September 29-30.

A new method of giving to the College is now available! Lutheran Brotherhood created a highly successful and popular program for Lutheran churches called Simply Giving and has just extended this opportunity to Gustavus and other Lutheran colleges. Simply Giving is an automatic bank draft program that allows you to make regular monthly gifts from a checking or savings account to the College. You do not need to be Lutheran to participate, there is no cost to you or the College for this service, and you can make changes at any time. For so many people, it is much easier to give $50 a month than to write a $600 check once a year. Please call Heather Nancarrow at (800) 726-6192 or (507) 933-7518, or e-mail her at to request more information.

~Melissa LeVesque-Piela, Josh Peterson, Jon Swanson and Stef Tucker

If you would like to give your fellow Gusties an update on what’s happening in your world, please contact the Alumni Office at 1-800-487-8437 or at, or any of the class agents. Also, please feel free to e-mail us your digital pictures. We may use them in future letters. We can be reached at:
(612) 827-9446
(612) 996-4776
(507) 933-7691
(612) 596-6416

We look forward to hearing from you!