Class of '97
September 2003

Dear Class of ’97 -

Fall has arrived in style on the hill.  The class of '98 just held their 5-year reunion during Homecoming Weekend September 26-27.  From the sound of it, there were a few '97 class members spotted around town.  Some of us have friends in the class of '98, others happen to be married to some of them.  Anyway, sounds like a great time was had by all.  Our class continues to evolve, as we are starting to see more baby announcements. However, the wedding announcements are still coming in strong as well.  It seemed that we were all focused on getting a job following college, now it seems that many of us are starting or expanding families.

For those of us in the state of Minnesota, it has been an interesting fall.  We're glad to see that California elected a Governor with an acting pedigree and an ability to beat up legislators if things get ugly.  To California, we say thanks, for taking that embarrassing political spotlight off of us, and onto you.

In other great Minnesota news, the Vikings are undefeated, the Twins were in the playoffs for the second straight year, the Gophers are having their best season since the 60's, and the Gusties are above .500 in MIAC football.  Life is GOOD!  

And now here is an update of what is happening with your fellow classmates……..

Take this job and …….

  • Kim (Bangstad) Anderz is a marketing process designer at Best Buy. 
  • Neil Bentley is a U.S. insecticide marketing manager at BASF Corp.
  • Reba (Williams) Berg is a captain and head nurse of the oncology clinic in the U.S. Army.
  • Kara Berge is working at Hogan & Hartson LLP in Washington D.C.   
  • Jill Budach-Bergman is pastor at Hosanna Lutheran Church in Forest Lake. 
  • Stephen Eric Bryden is elementary substitute teaching at Fort Wayne Community School by day and working on his solo album by night.  
  • Erika Burge is a children's librarian at Cedarburg Public Library in Cedarburg, WI. 
  • Alison (Phillips) Callahan is a third grade teacher at Centennial Elementary School.
  • Billie Caldwell-Carr is working at Opportunity Partners.
  • Abigail DeHoop is an assistant operations manager at Peterson Environmental Consulting.  
  • Juliana Egley is a freelance theater director.  
  • Mari Bottolfson Feder is co-owner and veterinarian at the Kind Vet Clinic in St. Peter, MN.
  • Matthew Fladeland is a research scientist at the NASA Ames Research Center in the Ecosystem Science and Technology Branch in San Francisco, CA. 
  • Rochelle (Carlson) Fredrick is a veterinarian at Wyllow Pet Hospital, Beaver Dam, WI.
  • Travis Garms is a manager at Ernst & Young in Denver, CO. 
  • Dr. Eric Gilbertson is a podiatry resident at MultiCare Health System in Tacoma, WA. 
  • Andy Gunsaullus, Castle Rock, CO, is an account services representative at American Century Investments. 
  • Ann Hanson is a children's librarian at the Cook Memorial Library in Union Grove, WI.
  • Corey Haugen teaches math in the Austin, MN school district.
  • Korene (Shelander)Henry is an account executive in with Gage Corporation.  
  • Elizabeth Jennings is a program manager at BestPrep. 
  • Heather (Senske) Kinkeade is in marketing at  Josh Kinkeade '96 is a senior financial analyst with Homeservices of America in Edina. 
  • Shawn Kirsch is a regulatory chemist at 3M.  
  • Rob Maas teaches English at Armstrong Senior High School
  • Amy (Swenson) Magnusson, Minneapolis, is a homemaker.
  • Allison (Davis) Manley, Minneapolis, is a homemaker.
  • Jason McDonald is a campus supervisor at Burnsville High School.
  • Ross Mettner is president of NEPHILA web design in Minneapolis.  Ross just completed a mission trip to the Dominican Republic where he delivered donations to needy children. 
  • Emily Miller is working as a senior pharmacy technician in Eden Prairie. 
  • Nathan Miller is an assistant professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
  • Lisa Mueller is the assistant director of Multicultural Student Services at the University of St. Thomas. 
  • Jennifer Motto is working as a physician's assistant in gastroenterology, at Midelfort Clinic, a Mayo Regional practice. 
  • Heather Moky is a physical therapist at Swedish Covenant Hospital in Chicago, IL. 
  • Kevin Vanderwerf Myers is a producer at FOX 9/ UPN 29. 
  • Regan (Nitz) Dose is working in human resources at Young America Corporation. 
  • Amy (Henningsgard) Panek is a homemaker.
  • Luke Panek is president & CEO of Midwest Vinyl Systems in Hudson, WI. 
  • Stacey (Pauling) Lauseng is the assistant controller at Optical Solutions in Plymouth, MN. 
  • Melissa Levesque-Piela is a real estate agent with Coldwell Banker Burnett Realty in Minneapolis.
  • Shelley (Wolfgram) Sanchez is a project manager at Chronimed.
  • Angela Sands works in human resources at Northwest Airlines.
  • Betsy Maloney is currently teaching dance at Gustavus. 
  • Jessica (Waldeck) Silgalis is an orthopedic surgery physician assistant at the Illinois Bone and Joint Institute. 
  • Megan (Cronin) Simonson is a sales representative with Schurman Fine Papers.
  • Rolf Simonson is a resident in family practice at Methodist Hospital. 
  • Jennifer (Pleuss) Spande is a foreign service officer with the US Embassy in Mexico City, Mexico. 
  • Melissa Stirn is a financial advisor at Ehlers & Associates. 
  • Pete Taurinskas is an independent financial consultant specializing in business retirement planning, life insurance, and investment planning. 
  • Stefanie Tucker is working in the GRMS group at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. 
  • Amy Pfarr Walker is the public relations coordinator at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, MA. 

Going to the Chapel

  • Kim Bangstad and Chaess Anderz were married on March 15, 2003 in the Bahamas.   They now live in Shakopee, MN. 
  • Kate Blanchard and Jason Shiroff were married on July 7, 2003.   Kate and Jason are living in Denver, CO. 
  • Kara Buckner and Josh Peterson were married on May 24, 2003, in Christ Chapel.  They are now living in Eden Prairie. 
  • Lars Ericson and Kristina Spencer were married in August 2001.   The couple is living in Houston, TX.
  • Jina Faurot and Andy Hagen are engaged to be married in October 2003. 
  • Kristin Ganyo and Michael Larson were married on April 5, 2003.   Kristin and Michael are living in Burnsville. 
  • Jennifer Gould and Aaron Marshall were married on August 11, 2001.  
  • Shawn Kirsch and Lena Jacobson were married on November 2, 2002.   They are living in Oakdale, MN.  
  • Jeff Larson and Angela Sexton were married on April 26, 2003.   They are now residents of Waseca, MN. 
  • Kristin Larson and Mitch Hensrud were married on July 6, 2002.  Kristin and Mitch are living in Minnetonka. 
  • Rob Maas and Kristin Manion were married on August 19, 2002.   The couple is living in Golden Valley, MN. 
  • Betsy Maloney and Chris Sevig were married on July 28, 2001.  The couple resides in Plymouth, MN.  
  • Jason McDonald and Colleen Mathiowetz were married on September 21, 2002.   They are now living in Burnsville.  
  • Jennifer Mull and Steve Daskal were married on July 6, 2002.  Jennifer and Steve are living in Ann Arbor, MI. 
  • Katy Peters and Paul Wiedel were married on July 20, 2002. 
  • Amy Pfarr and William Walker were married on August 16, 2002.  The couple is living in Beverly, MA. 
  • Kristi Reidt and Jorg Granacher were married on August 16, 2003.  Kristi and Jorg are living in Minneapolis. 
  • Angela Sands and Jeffery Schwartz were married on September 13, 2003.  They are residing in Hanover, MN. 
  • Leah Schultz and Jeffrey Cook were married in Christ Chapel on June 29, 2002.  Leah and Jeff are currently living in Fort Dodge, IA. 
  • Korene Shelander and Brian Henry were married on September 28, 2002.   The couple now lives in Elk River.  
  • Amy Swart and Scott Peters were married on January 1, 2003.  Amy and Scott are living in Mesquite, NV.  
  • Paul Unglaub and Wendy Charon were married on August 23, 2003. 
  • Jessica Waldeck and Mark Silgalis were married on October 19, 2002.   Jessica and Mark are living in Chicago, IL. 
  • Holly Wangsness married Jake Dau on June 7, 2003 in Rochester, MN.    The couple now resides in Charlotte, NC.  
  • Michael Westbrock and Kristin Lesher '99 were married and are now living in St. Paul. 

Future Gusties

  • Heather (Duggan) and Kyle Anderson welcomed baby girl, Elsa Grace, on June 21, 2003.
  • Katie (Wreed) and Ryan Bell had baby boy, Evan, on March 12, 2003. 
  • Heidi (Shellum) and Bruce Bredlow gave birth to baby boy, Trey, on October 31, 2002.
  • Kara (Pauly) and Brian Breegemann said hello to baby boy, Tristan, on July 31, 2003. 
  • Alison (Phillips) and Michael Callahan brought baby girl, MacKenzie, into the world on November 11, 2001.
  • Siri (Hanson) and Neal Campbell '98 welcomed baby boy, Leif, on August 26, 2002.
  • Sally (Gramstad) and Frank Casey gave birth to baby girl, Mary Liv, on November 1, 2002. 
  • Elizabeth (Bomier) and Joshua Irish brought baby girl, Jane Elizabeth, into the world on June 26, 2003. 
  • Jennifer and Keith Haugen welcomed son, Riley Corey, on July 12, 2003.  
  • Heather (Senske) and Josh Kinkeade '96 had baby girl, Grace Victoria, on November 19, 2002. 
  • Kristin and Rob Maas had a baby girl, Elsa Rose, on February 8, 2003.
  • Amy (Swenson) and Jan Magnusson '95 gave birth to son, Gustaf, on April 18, 2002.
  • Alison (Davis) and Paul Manley '96 had baby boy, Bennett, on May 20, 2003.
  • Alissa (Midthune) and Mark Maloney said hello to their second son, Drew Patrick, on January 20, 2003.   
  • Sarah (Marohn) and Nathan Miller had a baby boy, Soren William, on March 15, 2003. 
  • Elaine (Nelson) and Justin Peik, welcomed baby boy, Alexander Nelson, on October 18, 2002. 
  • Sarah (Ulwelling) and Thang Nguyen gave birth to son, Marcus, on June 4, 2003. 
  • Amy (Henningsgard)and Luke Panek welcomed their second son, Bauer, on February 19, 2002. 
  • Sara (Nelson) and Alex Perfetti had baby boy, Anthony Matthew, on March 22, 2003.
  • Melissa (LeVesque) and Chris Piela '95 said hello to baby girl, Lauren Joy, on December 9, 2002.
  • Julie (Buerkle) and Matt Radniecki brought baby girl, Kiera Angeline, into the world on May 11, 2003.  
  • Maren (Henry) and Jeffrey Rasmussen had baby girl, Arianna, on November 27, 2002.
  • Anna (Lenz) and Rob Sammelson '96 had a baby boy, Robby, on February 13, 2003. 
  • Anne (Schauer) and Lee Rood welcomed Allyson, on February 11, 2003.  
  • Steve Schmidt and wife, Natalie, said hello to baby boy, Noah Daniel, on November 27, 2002.
  • Jill (Steinhorst) and Timothy Schrupp welcomed son, Logan, on January 7, 2003.
  • Erin (Augustine) and Mike Steudemann said hello to son, Joseph, on October 22, 2002. 
  • Jill (Watson) and Jon Swanson welcomed baby boy, Andrew Jonathan, on June 23, 2003.  
  • Emily (Sanvick) Thompson and husband had a baby boy, Ethan Robert, on April 17, 2002. 
  • Erin (Johnson) and Jonathan Turner had baby boy, Jackson Laddie, on September 30, 2002. 
  • Karin (Foster) and Daryl Vavrichek '99 said hello to baby girl, MaKenna Lisken, on May 25, 2003. 
  • Kim (Smith) and  Shane Wernsing welcomed baby boy, Konrad, February 18, 2003.
  • Staci (Halverson) and Steve Winter gave birth to son, Aidan Michael, on March 18, 2003.

Back to School

  • Jill Budach-Bergman received a master of divinity degree from Luther Seminary.
  • Erika Burge graduated from the University of IL, Champaign-Urbana with a masters of science in library and information science.
  • Jennifer (Johnson) Cords passed her Certified Financial Planner exam with flying colors! 
  • Robert Cramer is attending a master in business administration program. 
  • Abigail DeHoop received her masters in business communications from the University of St. Thomas. 
  • Amy Dragland received a master's degree in business administration from the University of St. Thomas.
  • Ann Hanson received a master's degree in library and information science from the University of Wisconsin.
  • Carl Hokanson is a graduate student in social work at Augsburg College.
  • Joel Jensen received a master's degree in philosophy from University of Colorado at Boulder and is now a Ph.D. student in architecture, design, and planning at the University of Colorado at Denver.  
  • Lisa (Ness) Lay is pursuing her teaching license and masters at Concordia University, St. Paul. 
  • Heather (Crosbie) Krier received a master's degree in education and school counseling certification from the University of Wisconsin -- River Falls.  
  • Martha Malinski completed a master's degree in education from Goddard College.  
  • Mike McCue, San Francisco, is a student at the California Institute of Integral Studies.
  • Trisha Niemi received a master's degree in pediatric nurse practitioning from the College of St. Catherine.
  • Kari (Wagener) Palazzari has been accepted to the law school at UNC.   She will begin classes this fall. 
  • Kate Peterson is attending the University of Wisconsin -- Madison for a master's degree in library science. 
  • Chris Sevig is pursuing his master's degree in counseling and psychological services from St. Mary's University. 
  • Jessica (Waldeck) Silgalis received a master's degree in physician assistant studies from Finch University/ Chicago Medical School.
  • Rolf Simonson graduated in May from the University of Minnesota Medical School. 
  • Joleen (Hubbard) Turja graduated from the University of Minnesota Medical School.
  • Jennifer Wald, completed a 3-year research study on adolescent physical activity and is starting a Ph.D. in exercise epidemiology at the University of Maryland. 
  • Rachel (Brekken) Urosevich is attending graduate school at Colorado University in Denver for her master's in business administration. 
  • Gerhardt Wagner, Ph.D. is a medical school student at Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, NE.  
  • Jennie Wald just completed a 3-year research study on adolescent physical activity.  She is now starting the Ph.D. program in exercise epidemiology at the University of Maryland. 
  • Kim (Smith) Wernsing is working on her residency in family practice with the University of MN. 
  • Carmen Westerberg received a Ph.D. in cognitive neuroscience from the University of Minnesota and is a post-doctoral fellow in the Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory at Northwestern University.  
  • Tara Zahler is a graduate student studying TESOL applied linguistics from Indiana University.  

Fall is a time for renewal on the Gustavus campus, as the leaves change colors, a new group of students begins as first-year students, and professors are well rested and ready to hit the books. This is also a time when we, as Alumni, need to renew our commitment to the College.  Every year there is a drive to promote Alumni Giving, and this year is no exception. This year's focus is on helping one student at a time.

Here is a current Gustavus student's thoughts on her experience as a Gustie as she prepares to graduate at the end of the year:

Arianne Waseen, Class of 2003, Major: Biochemistry
"Receiving a music scholarship was the deciding factor in choosing Gustavus.  As a biochemistry major, I am still able to participate in music without declaring it as a major. You can't do this at many schools."

Arianne points out one of the great qualities in a liberal arts education. Our Alumni over the years have recognized the value of this experience and have continually ranked very high in the country for Alumni Giving.  Within Gustavus alums, there are two groups of donors that we want to make you aware of that donate to the Gustavus Fund.

The Ren Anderson Society

Gifts of $1,000 to $4,999 to The Gustavus Fund.
Gifts to the Ren Anderson Society recognize the importance of the Gustavus Fund in providing leadership for the College.  Named after the long-time vice president for public relations and development, Anderson '34 was recognized as a creative leader in the development of Gustavus.

The Cec Eckhoff Society

The Cec Eckhoff society recognizes individuals who make a life-long commitment of making a gift to the Alumni Fund.  By joining the Cec Eckhoff Society, you affirm your appreciation for what Gustavus has given to you or your family over the years. You are simply asked to give every year for life, the amount you give is up to you.

Obviously many of us are still paying loans, and the Ren Anderson society isn't for everyone. If you are able to give that amount, thank you!  If not, we really encourage you to become a member of The Cec Eckhoff Society and make the life-long pledge of commitment to the College.  It is a great feeling to know that no matter how much you are able to give, you are committed to doing so every year.  Join us in this time of renewal by renewing your commitment to Gustavus.

If you would like to be included in this news in the future, please send your updated information to the Alumni Office, and we'll be sure to include your news!  Additionally, if you'd like to update your e-mail addresses, please inform the Alumni Office at the GAC home page at :

Campus News

College opens 142nd Academic Year -- More than 700 new students, including transfer students and international students, joined the Gustavus community this fall, keeping the total student population around 2,515. The retention rate of students from the first to second year remains at 90 percent. These students will be taught by 198 full-time and 55 part-time faculty. Gustavus was again ranked in the top third of the 214 national liberal arts colleges by the U.S. News and World Report.

Sculptor Paul Granlund '52 dies -- Paul Granlund died on September 15, 2003, the same day his exhibit Retrospective opened as scheduled in the Hillstrom Museum of Art on the Gustavus campus.  He was sculptor-in-residence at Gustavus from 1971-1996.  His figurative bronze sculptures are found in private collections and public installations nationally and internationally, including 30 bronze works on the Gustavus campus.  Retrospective will be displayed until November 9.

Gustavus Finishes sixth in Director's Cup -- Gustavus finished sixth out of 395 Division III institutions for the 2002-03 Director's Cup announced recently by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics. The only all-sports competition in intercollegiate athletics, the award honors four-year institutions with the best overall athletic programs.  Last year Gustavus placed 10th.

Chapel Program -- The Gustavus Chapel program is one of the strongest in higher education averaging 350 students attending Daily Chapel.  In addition, there are twelve student-led programs including: Apprentice - students who are interested in being part of ministry and open to see where the Spirit might be leading; Fellowship of Christian Athletes - athlete or not, time for fellowship, worship, speakers, service projects and mission trips; Gustavus Youth Outreach - committed to sharing the Gospel and providing opportunities to serve by participating in off-campus youth ministry; Jewish Organization of Gustavus - for students, faculty and staff who were either Jewish or interested in the Jewish faith; Newman Center - dedicated to building a deeper understanding of the Catholic faith; Prepare - build a new generation of believers through mentors, mission trips, Bible study, prayer and worship; Proclaim - Bible-based contemporary worship service in the Dive; Taizé - a contemplative worship service of music, prayer, readings and silence.

Melissa LeVesque Piela                                                Jon Swanson                                                         

Josh Peterson                                                               Stef Tucker                               

Alumni Office