Class Notes – Fall 2012

August 20, 2012

Class Notes

1960s

Clairvaux McFarland ’67 (Rochester, Minn.), a member of the Sisters of Saint Francis, celebrated the order’s Diamond Jubilee on May 10. She obtained master’s in art education and administration from Winona State. Sister Clairvaux went on to serve in education and art administration in Portsmouth, Ohio, and Delano, Austin, Waseca, and Winona.

David Meisner ’67 (Oakdale, Minn.) has been selected to the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Hall of Fame. A basketball star, David graduated from WSU as its all-time leading scorer with 1,658 career points. He worked as a teacher in the Minneapolis area before moving to a career in sales. He was elected to the WSU Athletic Hall of Fame in 1986.

Roger Wistrcill ’68/’70 (Cumberland, Wis.) was inducted into the Austin (Minn.) Pacelli High School Hall of Fame in June. Roger was a three-sport star at Pacelli and was an all-state football player in 1963. He went on the play football for four years at WSU.

Gene Schultz ’69/’76 (Lansing, Iowa) was tabbed as Baseball Coach of the Year by the National High School Coaches Association. Gene just completed his 43rdyear as coach at Lansing-New Albin High School. He leads the nation in wins (1,963) and has won eleven state titles. Gene played baseball for the Warriors.

Bruce White ’69/73 (Hamden, Conn.) recently won the James Marshall Award for faculty service at Quinnipiac University. Bruce, professor of information systems management, serves on Quinnipiac’s Faculty Senate, University Review Committee, Information Technology Committee, and advises three student groups. He also won the Center for Excellence in Teaching Award in 2008.

1970s

Barry Nichols ’71 (Delphi, Ind.) retired after 17 years as chemistry professor at Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College in Middlesboro.

Katherine (Hathaway) Moeller ’72 (Spring Valley, Minn.) has retired from teaching at the Kingsland Public Schools. Kathy taught first grade for 28 years at Kingsland. “During my high school years, I spent some time volunteering in a first grade classroom and my career path was set,” says Kathy. Her teaching career spanned 38 years. She now plans to garden, quilt, read, bike, and spend time volunteering, traveling, and spending time with family.

Robert Schmitt ’74 (Shakopee, Minn.) retired in June 2008 after 34 years with the Scott County Assessor’s Office. He married wife, Nancy, on April 20, 2011 and now has a stepson and two step-grandchildren. Robert reports that he underwent successful brain surgery last year to terminate seizures and is now back on the golf course and volunteering with Junior Achievement.

Sandra (Brandhorst) ’74/80 and Mark Bestul ’77 (Lake City, Minn.) both recently retired. Sandra retired after working 34 years as a special education teacher in the Lake City Public Schools. Mark retired after a 34-year teaching career in industrial technology with the Goodhue Public Schools. The Bestuls have two daughters and a grandson.

Barbara (Bonow) Borgwardt ’76 (Fountain City, Wis.) and husband, Daniel, celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary on June 30.

Jon Knopik ’78 (Saint Cloud, Minn.) has joined Lakewood Health System as community outreach coordinator for Psychiatric Services. He will serve as an educational resource for the community and contact for healthcare providers. He has more than 20 years of experience in public education and working with older adults.

1980s

Kent DeYoung ’80 (Mesa, Ariz.) retired after 25 years of working in public finance in Arizona. His last position was chief financial officer for the Higley Unified School District in Gilbert.

Katy Smith ’84 (Winona), the 2011 Minnesota Teacher of the Year, has been named one of just 32 NEA Pearson Foundation Global Learning Fellows. She is a parent education teacher with the Winona Area Public Schools Community Education Early Childhood Family Education Program. Katy earned her bachelor’s in social work at WSU.

Victor Vieth ’84 (Winona) the executive director of the National Child Protection Training Center, has been awarded the Pro Humanitate Award for Child Advocacy, North America’s premier honor for child advocacy. Victor is founder of the NCPTC, which is the largest provider of training and technical assistance to child protection professionals in the United States. The center, headquartered on the Winona State campus, provides forensic interview training in 20 states and in Columbia and Japan. Victor is an advocate for reforming undergraduate and graduate training of child protection professionals and has helped implement reforms at dozens of colleges, including the Child Advocacy Studies program at WSU. In making the award, the North American Resource Center for Child Welfare said that Victor has demonstrated “the courage to challenge political and conventional barriers to improving child welfare services.”

Elizabeth (Colapietro) Vozzola ’84 (West Hartford, Conn.) has been appointed to a three-year term as director of the Honors Program at the University of Saint Joseph. She is a professor of psychology at Saint Joseph.

Siobhan Bremer ’85 (Morris, Minn.) is spending her summer as a member of the cast for the Guthrie Theatre’s production of The Sunshine Boys. She plays the role of a CBS executive in the Neil Simon comedy about a bickering vaudeville team reuniting for a television special. Siobhan, an associate professor of theatre arts at the University of Minnesota-Morris and the daughter of WSU professor Vivian Fusillo, has been acting since the age of four when she appeared as a munchkin in The Wizard of Oz. She has also acted at the Commonweal Theatre, Northern Lights Playhouse, Climb Theatre, and Bountiful Theatre, and directed at the Barn Theatre, Northern Lights, Winona Community Theatre, and Minnesota-Morris. She has taught at Minnesota-Morris for 11 years and has also taught at universities in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. Catch her performance at the Guthrie through September 2.

Michael Kramer ’86 (South Bend, Ind.) has been appointed chair of the Department of Communication Studies, Dance, and Theatre at Saint Mary’s College in Indiana. Michael’s five-year-old daughter, Daisy, just started playing soccer and Fiona, who is two, likes to climb things.

William Ihrke ’87/03 (Plainview, Minn.) coached the Minnesota All-Star Football Game. Bill is the highly successful head coach at Plainview-Elgin-Millville High School and began his coaching career while still a student at Winona State. His team won a state title in 2002 and he has compiled a 132-57 record in 18 seasons.

James Herbert ’88 (Marine on St. Croix, Minn.) is vice president and branch manager at First State Bank & Trust. He manages two brances in the Stillwater area. He’s been married to wife Esther, who attended WSU in 1989, for 23 years. They have four boys, Shane, Eric, Ryan, and Cole.

Dan Schumacher ’89 (Channahon, Ill.) is the new director of intercollegiate athletics at Chicago State University. He was formerly at Lewis University in Romeoville, Ill., and has also worked in athletics development at Winona State.

1990s

Andy Siegal ’90 (Visalia, Calif.) has been named offensive coordinator at the University of Nebraska at Kearney. The Illinois native was most recently director of league development for the World Professional Football League. He earned his bachelor’s in physical education at WSU and played football and wrestled.

Linda Cibulskis ’91 (Fountain Hills, Ariz.) writes that in 2011 she won the Nursing Excellence Award in the category of Management for the Mountain West Region, sponsored by Nurse Week magazine and Nurse.com. She is currently house supervisor at Mayo Clinic in Arizona, where she celebrated her 21st year this summer.

Matt Bollant ’94 (Green Bay, Wis.) is the new women’s basketball coach at the University of Illinois. He enjoyed a successful stint as head coach at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, where he compiled a 148-19 record over the last five years.

Kent Kindschy ’94 (Ladysmith, Wis.) accepted a principal position at Turtle Lake K-12 School. He and wife, Debra (May) ’93 and their two sons moved to Turtle Lake in June.

Sara Haley Kreibich ’98 (Somerset, Wis.) has been chosen Distinguished High School Teacher of the Year by the Wisconsin Council for the Social Studies. She has been a social studies teacher for 12 years and currently teaches at Somerset High School. She earned degrees at WSU, the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, and Silver Lake College, where she received her master’s in administrative leadership. She and husband, Cory, a third grade teacher, have three children.

2000s

Amanda (Keiser) Brinkman ’00 (Blaine, Minn.), vice president for branding and creative services for Allianz Life Insurance Co., was honored by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal’s Women in Business in May.

Jeff Kocur ’00 (Bloomington, Minn.) won the 2012 Educator of the Year from the Minnesota High School Press Association. Jeff is a teacher at Hopkins High School and advisor to its yearbook and newspaper. He began teaching English language arts and advising the newspaper in 2000. Both Hopkins publications have won state and national recognition for excellence.

Christopher Bode ’01 (Dubuque, Iowa) has a new book: 4th Quarter Madness: A Football-Style Guide For Stay-At-Home-Dads. He has been a stay-at-home father for eight years to his three daughters. He earned his bachelor’s in elementary education at WSU and also a history degree at the University of Iowa.

Luke Merchlewitz ’01 (Winona) has been selected to serve on the National Education Association Foundation’s Senior Fellows Advisory Group. He joins six fellow educators to shape the NEA mission and consult with staff. The appointment caps a two-year run of accolades, during which Luke has been named a Minnesota Teacher of the Year finalist and the Minnesota Teacher of Excellence.

Reggie Olendieck ’01 (San Antonio, Texas) is the new boys’ basketball coach at Marshall High School in the Northside ISD in San Antonio.

Mike Swenson ‘01/’05 (Winona), after eight years as director of Alumni Relations at Winona State, is crossing the river to become executive director of the Western Technical College Foundation in La Crosse, Wis. Mike, will oversee development and alumni affairs. Western Technical College maintains seven campuses and serves about 20,000 students each year.

Stefanie (Steimann) ’02 and Jeremy Schussler ’02 (Savage, Minn.) welcomed their first child, Miles Cory, on March 6.

Holly (Marten) Sieve ’02 (Round Lake, Minn.) and husband Jason welcomed daughter, Monroe Rae, on November 21, 2011. Big sisters Presley and Madison love her so much! Holly also celebrated ten years as marketing coordinator at Sanford Worthington Medical Center in May. She started at the hospital just a week after graduating from WSU.

Mike ’02 and Jackie (Kuehlmann) Skroch ’01 (Holmen, Wis.) welcomed Molly Elizabeth to the family on January 27.

Peggy (Seitz) Reimers ’03 (Green Isle, Minn.) was promoted to dispatch supervisor at the Nicollet County Sheriff’s Office in St Peter. She is responsible for daily operations and oversees the dispatchers. She has been employed with Nicollet County since 2005.

Carrie (Semling) Bork ’04 (Trempealeau, Wis.) and husband, Michael, welcomed son Garrett on June 9.

Amanda (Bagniewski) Gillett ’04  (Winona) welcomed daughter Dakota Joe Gerilaine on May 18.

Jeffrey O’Donnell ’04 (Rushford, Minn.) married Chelsea Kopperud on June 30. Jeffrey is self-employed in Rushford while Chelsea works at Fastenal.

Jennifer (Cuculi) ’04 and Nick Jaeger ’04/’06 (Champaign, Ill.) welcomed their first daughter, Avery Patricia, on April 1.

Amy (Andresen) ’04 and Daniel ’04 Moses (Sugar Land, Texas) welcomed a baby girl, Maycee Harper, on July 3.

Jeffrey O’Donnell ’04 (Rushford, Minn.) married Chelsea Kopperud on June 30. Jeffrey is self-employed in Rushford while Chelsea works at Fastenal.

Jennifer (Einspar) ’05 and Tyler Carlson ’05 (Iowa City, Iowa) welcomed daughter Lydia René in November 2011. The Carlsons were married in July 2007. Jennifer received her master’s in Physician Assitant Studies at the University of Iowa and works at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Tyler is a deputy sheriff for Johnson County.

Lindsey (Cadwell) Hoffman ’05 (Red Lodge, Mont.) welcomed her first child, son Guenther Nelson Hoffman on April 22.

Steve Opgenorth ’05 (Winona) has been named offensive coordinator at Colby College in Waterville, Maine. The cum laude graduate of WSU moves from his alma mater, where he coached receivers and special teams and was recruiting coordinator.

Melissa (Wolf) Schulze ’05 (La Crosse, Wis.) has joined the Neurology Unit at Gundersen Lutheran. She earned her advance practice nursing degree at WSU and provides care as a certified family nurse practitioner in neurology.

Nicole (Aschenbrener) ’06 and Gregory Fedor ’01 (Winona) had their first son in April.

Miranda (Kleinbeck) Ziebell ’06 (Saint Paul, Minn.) and husband, Matt, had a daughter, Norah Jane, on March 13.

Angela (Schroering) Hazelton ’07 (Winona) married Bryan Hazelton on April 28. Angela and Bryan both work for Mayo Clinic.

Rebekah (Ditthardt) Van Dalen ’07 (Rochester, Minn.) and husband, Justin, welcomed Jude Lincoln Van Dalen on January 18. The Van Dalens live in Rochester where Rebekah works a supplemental position as an RN in primary care internal medicine at Mayo Clinic.

Matt Appleman ’08 (Minneapolis, Minn.) has forged an entrepreneurial outlet for his passions of engineering and cycling. Matt’s custom bike frame shop, Appleman Bicycles, was recently featured in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. He crafts about a dozen custom fit frames a year from carbon fiber for performance cyclists and enthusiasts. Matt was a founder of the cycling club at WSU and graduated with a degree in composite materials engineering.

Kelly (Paszkiewicz) Kruchten ’08 (Rockland, Wis.) and husband, Jeremy, welcomed their first child, Cooper Michael, on March 13.  Kelly works for Sprint in West Salem, but she was born and raised in Winona and visits often!

Taylor Martinson ’08 (Minneapolis, Minn.) joins metroConnections as a production services coordinator. metroConnections provides conference, event, stage production, and transportation for meeting and event planners. Taylor previously worked in the green building industry in event coordination, meeting management, and fundraising.

Kyle Witt ‘08 (Waupun, Wis.) has been added to the lending staff at Farmers State Bank. Kyle graduated with a double major in business administration and finance. Before joining the Farmers State Bank, he served as a financial consultant and investment representative for Primerica Financial Services.

Jennifer (Clobes) Brooks ’09 and Glen Brooks ‘09 (New Ulm, Minn.) married on August 11. Jennifer is a kindergarten teacher while Glen works at 3M.

Terri Douglas ‘09 (Winona) joined the Winona Health Urgent Care Clinic as a certified nurse practitioner. She earned her BSN at Winona State and master’s from Frontier Nursing University in Kentucky. Terri has worked with Winona Health since 2006.

Jonte Flowers ’09 (Cottage Grove, Wis.) returned to the WSU campus over the summer after playing basketball overseas in Sweden and France. The former Warriors All America anticipates playing in Finland next season. He and wife Jennifer (Jepson) ’03 have a 14-month-old daughter, Ayanna.

Alisha Hanson ’09 (Eau Claire, Wis.) married Ben Staads on August 18. Alisha works in accounting and human resources at Metropolis Resort. Ben, a graduate of Iowa State University, is a mason at Stone Pro.

Christopher Landsom ’09 (Winona) will marry Kim McGriff on October 6. Chris works for State Farm in Winona; Kim is employed by Sport & Spine Physical Therapy.

Samuel Baker ’10 and Katie Ganshaw ’11 (Plymouth, Minn.) announced they will marry on May 26, 2013.

Trevor Carrier ’10 (Winona) and his wife Kayla welcomed a son, Ayden Thomas, on June 12.

David Dockter ’10 (Houston, Minn.) married Kelly Kuehn on August 4. David works for the U.S. Department of Agriculture while Kelly works for Kuehn’s Trucking.

Elizabeth (Evans) ’10 and Nick Furlong ’10 (Whitefish, Mont.) wed on April 28 in Winona. Beth is a nurse and Nick is a photographer and marketing director. They met during their sophomore year at the Mass Communications photography show.

Abby Lindquist ’10 (Medford, Minn.) was announced as Rochester Century High School’s new volleyball coach. She is also the main office receptionist at Century. It’s her first high school head coaching position. She is also married former Warriors baseball player Ben Barrone ’10 in August. Ben is a juvenile corrections officer in Rochester. The couple has a daughter, Caliegh.

Prapti Shrestha ’10 (Eagan, Minn.) is working on an MS in software engineering at the University of Minnesota.

Michael Carr ’11 (Farmington, Minn.) married Brooke Atwood on June 2. Brooke is a professional nanny and co-owner of ShopCarr.com. Michael earned his degree in business administration and is assistant store leader at Kwik Trip in Farmington and also co-owner of ShopCarr.com.

Tyler ’11 and Leah (LaFond) Faust ’12  (Red Wing, Minn.) wed in May. Tyler earned his nursing degree and works at Mayo Clinic. Leah received a social work degree and is employed at 180 Degrees and works at a group home in Rochester.

Stephen LaValla ’11 (Buffalo City, Wis.) and wife Jenifer announce the birth of his son, John Edward, born on June 9.

Amanda (McCabe) Thomas ’11 (Cresco, Iowa) married Joel Thomas on July 14. Amanda teaches at LeRoy-Ostrander School District; Joel works in facilities operations at Mayo Clinic.

Matt Ulrich ’12 (Rushford, Minn.), a standout defensive tackle for the Warriors, has signed a free-agent contract with the Minnesota Vikings. Matt was a three-time All NSIC player and All America for WSU.

Mike ’02 and Jackie (Kuehlmann) Skroch ’01 (Holmen, Wis.) welcomed Molly Elizabeth to the family on January 27.

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About Winona State University

Founded in 1858, Winona State University is a comprehensive public university with more than 8,500 students. The oldest member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System, Winona State offers 80 undergraduate, pre-professional, licensure, graduate, and doctorate programs on its three campuses: the original Main Campus in Winona, the West Campus in Winona, and Winona State University-Rochester.

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