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The University of Minnesota Duluth

BRIDGE - Winter 2006, Volume 23, #1

Alumni Notes

The University of Minnesota Duluth Bridge publishes Alumni Notes. You can send us notes by e-mail:, by fax at 218-726-6186. If you are in the U.S., you can send your note to: Alumni Director, University Relations, University of Minnesota Duluth, 315 DAdB, 1049 University Drive, Duluth, MN 55812. This issue of the Bridge reflects the notes we received before January 30, 2006.









Dr. Patricia (Abbott) Richard-Amato, just released her latest book. It is entitled, Academic Success for English Language Learners; Strategies for K-12 Mainstream Teachers, 2005, Pearson Education, White Plains, New York. She developed the anthology with co-editor M.A. Snow, her former colleague at California State University, Los Angeles, Calif.


Michele Fedderly was named executive director for Hospice Minnesota.


Dan Kaler became the next superintendent of Ellsworth, Wis. Schools in July 2005.


General Bruce Carlson received a fourth star, in August, and has assumed command of the Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC). His command will oversee research and development, tests and evaluations, acquisition management services and logistic support.


Nancy (Sherry) Skare has been busy maintaining an active teaching schedule at Willow River Elementary School as well as helping her husband, Tom, remodel his new office at Skare Law Office in Cloquet, Minn.


Tom Mullins, who attended the School of Social Development, has been doing economic and community development work. Tom moved to Tyler, Texas in 1989 and only gets back to Minnesota once or twice a year to visit family. Tom is the president/CEO of the Tyler Area Chamber of Commerce and Tyler Economic Development Council.


Will Norman was recently hired as regional operations manager for Como Oil and Propane. Will's responsibilities will consist of managing overall day-to-day operations for the company throughout eight regional offices in northern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin.


Louise Seliski started the Women's Center of Mid-Minnesota, a 24-hour emergency shelter for battered women and their children. In 2000 Louise also founded the Alex and Brandon Child Safety Center, where court-ordered, supervised visits between parents and children take place. Louise is the executive director of both places and is looking forward to retiring in a few more years


Mary Weeks was recently appointed assistant professor for the Metropolitan State University College of Professional Studies. Mary will teach social welfare history and policy, social research, and human behavior.


Bill Hinderks is a loss prevention specialist with Risk & Insurance Management Company of Bloomington, Ill. RIMCO is a risk management and insurance services consulting firm. He and his wife, Kris, live in Bloomington, Minn. with their two children, James and Jackie.


Mindy Johnson is a social worker in Hennepin County's Adult Foster Care Licensing Program. Previously, she worked for child protection including one year in the legal unit. During a volunteer trip to Ukraine, Mindy adopted a son, Alex, who is now three years old.


Barbara Doherty is employed as a senior program administrator in the Aging and Adult Services Division of the Minnesota Department of Human Services in St. Paul. Barbara has been in her current position since 1999 and is responsible for statewide implementation of Minnesota's Vulnerable Adult Act providing training and consultation to local county adult protection staff.


Tom Kurvers, former UMD hockey defenseman, has been named director of player personnel by the NHL's Phoenix Coyotes. Tom has been the team's professional scout, and was an assistant coach the second half of last season, working with the Phoenix defensemen.


Lynne (Solien) Halbrooks, has recently been appointed as deputy sergeant at Arms for the United States Senate in Washington, D.C. She lives with her husband, Kevin, in Annandale, Va.

Karol Jensen had a book published in 1999, which continues to sell well today. Her book is entitled, Lesbian Epiphanies: Women Coming Out in Later Life. She is currently writing a memoir about her personal "coming out," to be published next year.

Susan Saly is currently teaching fourth grade students in Minneapolis. Susan and her husband Peter have two children, Elizabeth, 7 and David, 5. The family resides in Minneapolis.


Tom Smuda has been promoted to vice president of North American retail for the Hershey Company. In his new role, Tom will be responsible for U.S. and Canada retail field sales. Tom also received the President's Cup for Sales Achievement in 1990 and 1991, in St. Louis, Mo.; in 1994, in Oregon; and, 1997 and 1999, in Seattle, Wash.

Timothy Vienneau was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in July and is currently deployed with the 115th Area Support Group of the California Army National Guard in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Prior to deployment he managed systems and networks for Global 360, a business process software company.


Michael Lillquist and his wife, Lynn, recently became the proud parents of their first child, Tyler Michael. After eight years as an active duty Air Force Officer, Mike became a financial manager and now heads his own financial business. The family resides in Oak Grove, Minn.


Bill Hempy is currently working as a design engineer at Adaptec, Inc.

Damon E. Schramm has joined Lakes Entertainment, Inc, in Minnetonka, Minn. as its general counsel. Damon will provide business and legal advice in areas of securities, finance, gaming, real estate development, and a wide range of other company operations.


Jodi Gallik (Terzich) was named a 2006 "Rising Star" by Minnesota Law and Politics magazine. Jodi is a partner who practices family law at Rider Bennet, focusing on paternity, divorce, custody and child support actions.

Jane Gilley has been a Human Services Planner with the St. Louis County Planning Department for the past ten years. She works primarily with the Social Services Department in planning and evaluation projects.

Major Tom Hagen was recently named one of "Ten Outstanding Young Minnesotans" for 2005 by the Minnesota Jaycees. In November 2005, Hager was preparing for deployment to Iraq with the First Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division. Tom and his wife, Nyla, are also celebrating the birth of their first baby girl, Ellen Kathleen. She joins her two older brothers Henry and Joseph.


Christina Erickson is on the faculty at Augsburg College in Minneapolis. Along with teaching, Christina is coordinating the department's participation in a national Curriculum Development Institute (CDI). She received her Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Chicago, Jane Addams College of Social Work. Prior to her doctorate work, Christina coordinated the National Parkinson Foundation Center for Excellence in the Department of Neurology at the University of Illinois at Chicago, was a youth and families program manager for Lao Family Community, and has worked in the field of disabilities and vocational rehabilitation.

David Kassler graduated with a Doctor of Music Arts (DMA) degree from the University of Miami in 2004. He is now an assistant professor at Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kans.

Mary Thomsen and Michael Borough, both of Duluth, were married in October 2005. Mary works for Memorial Blood Centers in Duluth. Michael works at Pickwick, Inc.


Amanda and Dan Bagenstoss were both on the juror's panel for the SDO design online 2004. Amanda is a designer at Yamamoto-Moss and Dan is at Capsule following several years at YM.

Paul Berger holds a supervisory position at the Hoopa Chamber of Commerce in Hoopa, Calif. In 2004, Paul received the highest bid at the annual Hoopa "Butler for a Day" City Personnel Benefit Auction.

Janelle Borg married Scott Schulz in June of this year. Janelle is a registered nurse at St. Mary's Medical Center in the pediatric care unit. Scott is the assistant director in the office of admissions at UMD.

Jennifer Dolezilek and Paul Sternkerg were married in November 2004. They own Paul and Jenni's Daycare in the Chester Park area of Duluth.

Rochelle Dillon and Gaylord Eicher were married on New Year's Eve, 2004, in Hawaii. Rochelle is employed by Health Partners and currently works as a hospital network management specialist. Gaylord is an account manager at General Mills.

Jennifer (Simonsen) Kempfert married Mike Kempfert the summer of 1996 after graduating from the Master of Social Work program. They live in Duluth and have two children, ages one and five. Jennifer has worked at ARC Northland since graduation and is now the associate administrator.

Amy Larson and Aaron Klima were married in August 2005. Aaron is an engineer for Superior Rock Bit Company in Virginia. Amy is a human resources generalist.

Julie Sveine and Dave Funkey, both of Atlantic Beach, Fla., were married in February 2005. Julie earned a degree in communications and is now employed by Southeastern Telecom. Dave is an independent contractor in Jacksonville, Fla.


Laurie (Franckowiak) Beyer was employed with Northwood Children's Services as a therapist for almost two years before moving to Bemidji. She worked in Cass Lake as a day treatment practitioner with elementary and high school students. Laurie obtained her LISW in 2002. Laurie and her family have moved back home to Duluth. She has two children, a five and a three-year-old. She now does contract work with the YMCA mentor Duluth program.

Tracy Carroll and Kristopher Johnson (MA '01), both of Woodbury, Minn., were married in September 2005. Kristopher is a safety and training coordinator for the city of Bloomington and Tracy is an employee relations specialist for United Hospital.

Dawn Raway and Douglas Heagren were married in April 2005. Dawn works as a regional representative for 3M Company. The couple now resides in Colorado.

Michelle Robertson worked as the lead social worker for the Fond du Lac's off-reservation foster care program until 2004, when she became the field coordinator for the College of St. Scholastica's Social Work Program. She has also been a trainer for the Minnesota Child Welfare Training System since 1999 for county and tribal social workers.


Mary (Rosati) Blackmarr and Captain Stephen Blackmarr, both of Coronado, Calif., were married in May 2005. Stephen graduated from the Navy Fighter Weapons School and is a Hornet pilot for the Marines. His next duty station will be at Top Gun where he has been asked to return to the school as an instructor. Mary is a sales manager with 24-Hour Fitness in San Diego.

Lisa (Lahti) Hokkanen and her husband, Mark Hokkanen, had a daughter, Kaylee Ann, on May 12, 2005.

Honore Lehtinen (MSW '98) is employed as a behavioral/mental health worker at Bois Forte Reservation. She received her LICSW in 2002. Honore is a Reiki practitioner and an EMDR provider. She belongs to the North East Behavioral Health Emergency Response Team (NE Minnesota), the Range Women's Advocates advisory board, the Bois Forte Tribal Emergency Preparedness Team, and the Mesabi Range and Technical College's Human Services Program Advisory Board. Honore is also a master trainer and supervisor for Psychological First Aid/Disaster Mental Health and has taught classes for the organization.

Jennifer Maki graduated from Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa in May 2005 with a master's degree in multidisciplinary studies, and in 2003 with a teaching certificate. Jennifer has been teaching at Hillcrest School in Dubuque.

Kristine (Squillace) Stenlund and Andrew Stenlund were married in July of 2000. They are celebrating the birth of their first child, Nicholas Michael. Nicholas was born on April 22, 2004.

Zachary Spengler was recently promoted to traffic manager at Farwest Freight Systems of Sumner, Wash. He and his wife, Wendy, have also just celebrated their four-year wedding anniversary.

Don Uhlhorn is a licensed independent clinical social worker (LICSW), employed at the Therapeutic Services Agency, Inc. in Pine City. Don provides out-patient mental health and family-based services, completes diagnostic and parenting assessments, testifies in court, and performs administrative duties.


Brian Delegan, of Oswego, Ill, recently switched to a new role at Morningstar, Inc. where he is charged with creating and managing a new suite of compliance tools for financial advisors. He and his wife Karen have two children.

Julie (Boeshart) Maas and Michael Maas, both of Minneapolis, were married in May 2005. Michael is a corporate safety engineer for Andersen Corp. He earned a master's degree in environmental health and safety. Julie is employed by Publishing Business Systems as an account manager.

Mandy (Paul) Senechal, of Coon Rapids, and Ryan Senechal, of Eagan, were married in August 2004. Mandy is a program coordinator for the Izaak Walton League in Saint Paul, and Ryan is a senior software developer for Space150 in Minneapolis. The couple resides in West Saint Paul, Minn.

Kari Rasmussen is currently a communications teacher at Wayzata High School. She is also the director for the school's theater productions.


Elnara (Mammadova) Browers and Michael Browers were married in August 2005. Michael is a graphic designer and is employed by Ikonics Corporation. He has entered into an agreement with, a font distributor based in Cambridge, Minn., for the distribution of his typefaces online. Michael's first two font releases are: Formasi and Isoglyphics.

Leah Funk and Marty Trierweiler were married in April 2004. They currently reside in Sauk Centre, Minn. Leah works for Enterprise Rent-A-Car as an insurance account representative and Marty is an insurance agent for the Polipnick Agency.

Kimberly Sundin and Chad Oppelt were married in July 2005. Kimberly is a school counselor at the Academy of Holy Angels in Richfield. The couple resides in Burnsville, Minn.


Noelle Bach is doing her pediatric residency after earning her Ph.D. in medicine this year from the UM-Twin Cities.


Scarlett Hiipakka and Steven Kajala, both of Angora, were married in July 2005. Steven is a financial advisor for Merrill Lynch in Duluth.

Chris Kleist, of Ely, and Jamie Peck, '03, of Duluth, were married in November 2004. Jamie is currently a production manager for printed collateral at Questex Media Group in Duluth. Chris earned a master's degree in marketing, and later received an associate degree in water quality management. He now owns and operates Ely Fishing.

Tina Larson and Steven Jankowski were married in May 2005. Tina graduated with a bachelor's degree in early childhood education and is now a teacher at Hallalujah Day Care Center in Hermantown, Minn. Steven is a signmaker for Minnesota Signs and Graphics.

Jennifer Darst and Judd Medak were married in July 2005. Judd is a professional banker for Wells Fargo Bank in Duluth. Jennifer is a teacher for the Superior, Wis. school district.

Jason Morrison and Tara Netland, '03, were married in August of 2003. Jason is employed by West Central Industries as a crew supervisor. Tara is a preschool teacher for the Jaguar Kid Connection and the Tri-Valley Migrant Head Start Programs. The couple is currently residing in Murdock, Minn.

Briana Duerr and Jake Nettleton were married in July 2005. Jake works in sales for Alaskan Distributing Company in Seattle, Wash. Briana is a mortgage originator for Diamond Mortgage.

Holli (Pahlen) Reichou and Edward Reichou were married in November 2004. Holli works for Edina Realty. Edward is practicing landscape design. The couple currently lives in Maple Grove, Minn.

Jeremy E. Rubel graduated from Northern Arizona University with a master's degree in education. Jeremy is now teaching first grade at Liberty Elementary in Buckeye, Ariz.

Tory Shemon and Steven Lukovsky, both of Duluth, were married in August 2005. Tory is a branch manager for Park State Bank in Duluth. Steven is a chiropractor and accupuncturist for Lukovsky Chiropractic Clinic in Duluth.

Diana (Pulgarin) Swanson and Jonathan Swanson, both of Venezuela, were married in July 2005. Jonathon received a bachelor's degree in 1997 in chemical engineering, and in 2002, he earned a master's degree in business administration. He currently works for Cleveland Cliffs Mining in Venezuela.

Stephanie Wenker and Matthew Duhme married in October 2004. Stephanie is a correction officer at the Steele County Detention Center. The couple currently resides in Waterville, Minn.


Penny Davis has been promoted after two years as a salon consultant with Beauty Craft in Minnetonka to regional business development manager.

Sarah Durland and Todd Huebert were married in June 2005. The couple resides in Saint Paul, Minn. Sarah is a claims and performance testing lab tech for Estee Lauder-Aveda Corporation. Todd is a lab tech for the Metropolitan Council- Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Susan Evans and Rob Martinson were married in July 2005. Susan is a teacher for the Big Lake School District and Rob is an electric engineer for Honeywell in Minneapolis, Minn.

Alyssa Ladehoff and Chris Braaten were married in September 2005. Alyssa is a personal banker with Wells Fargo and Chris is an engineering technician with American Engineering and Testing. The couple resides in Saint Paul, Minn.

Donna Bellows and Brent Laurila, Duluth, were married in July 2005. Brent is a mathematics teacher at Denfeld High School and Woodland Middle School. Donna is pursuing a dental hygenist degree.

Michelle (Virginia) Blanchard and Jeffrey Blanchard were married in July 2005. Michelle received a master's degree in education, this year. She is now an elementary Ojibwe language teacher. Jeffrey has served nine years in the Army and is a Stryker vehicle commander in Fort Lewis, Wash.

Tiffany (Nohre) Wenngatz and Brian Wenngatz were married in September 2004. Tiffany is a business analyst for Target Corporations and Brian is a marketing sales executive for Travel Net Solutions. The couple currently lives in South Minneapolis, Minn.

Karrie Ross and Brian Gangle were married in September 2005. Karrie graduated with a bachelor's degree in early childhood studies and now she is an instructor of Invest Early Program through School District 317. Brian also works at Invest Early Program as an instructor and a parent educator.


Laura Guggisberg and Nicholas Hage, '05, were married in August. Laura is a patient account representative at the Mankato Clinic and Nicholas is a group leader for Taylor Corporation in Mankato, Minn.

Julia ("Bunny") Jaakola (MSW '04) was presented the Association on Children, Youth and Families Commissioner's Award, at the National Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect. Julia has been a social worker since 1987, and has received a number of professional awards in her career. She served for 14 years as chair of the Indian Child Welfare Advisory Board and is a program development and evaluation coordinator for the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. She is a resident of Cloquet, Minn.

Carrie (Stelman) Kelley and Benjamin Kelley, both of Duluth, were married in May 2005. Benjamin is currently employed as a civil engineering technician for American Engineering and Testing in Duluth. Carrie is an assistant cost accountant for Enbridge Energy Company.

Stephanie Magedanz is currently working at South Dakota Office of Tourism as a graphic designer.

Stephanie Peterson, Robbinsdale, Minn., is working in finance for USB Financial.

Lori Simon and Dan O'Neill, were married in September 2005. Lori is a customer account and marketing specialist for Cartier Agency in Duluth. Dan is a sales professional for Sanofi-Auchtis.

Erin Thompson and Royce Fontaine, both of Duluth, were married in October 2005. Erin is an independent living specialist for Access North. Royce is pursuing a degree in industrial controls.

Jonelle Warner and Axel Olson were married in July 2005. Jonelle is a children's pastor at Hillside Community Church in Duluth. Axel is pursuing a bachelor's degree in nursing.

Jeffrey Wright recently established the new UMD national fraternity pharmacy branch, Phi Delta Chi. Jeff is the UMD fraternity president and highly recommends the UMD pharmacy school.


Chad Albers moved to the senior art director for Target Corporation in November 2005. He was previously the art director for Marshall Fields in Minneapolis, Minn.

Tara Bradach was married to Sam Stanisich in September 2005. Tara is an investment officer for First National Bank of Gilbert, Minn. Sam works at Minntac in Mountain Iron.

Angela Green and Jonathon Delf, both of Duluth, were married in November 2005. Angela is a family services coordinator at the Cremation Society of Minnesota/First Memorial Funeral Chapel in Duluth. Jonathon is a dentist for Lake Superior Dental Associates.

Leyna Herfindahl and Peter Krzewinski, both of Duluth, were married in August 2005. During the ceremony, instead of reading "Husbands, love your wives," a friend of the couple said, "Husbands, leave your wives." The entire church burst out laughing. Leyna is a guest services manager for EconoLodge.

Abby Liljequist has taken a position at Yamamoto-Moss, a graphic design firm in Minneapolis. She joins another UMD graduate from 1996, Amanda Bagentoss, who is beginning her ninth year with the company.

Leah Senn was hired as a designer at Marshall Fields in Minneapolis after completing an internship there.

Erik Torch, (MSW '05) Duluth, was named 2005 Master of Social Work, Student of the Year by the Minnesota Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. After graduating, Erik was promoted to Damiano Center Associate Director. Erik is also a member of the Mayor's Citizen Action Committee to End Homelessness.



Ruth L. Hanson, BA
August 2, 2005

Vertone C. Lukone, BA, MA '47

April 21, 2005

Glenn I. Wilmot, BA

June 11, 2005

Robert D. Oberg, BA

September, 2005

Warren E. Sather, BA
December 11, 2005

Jan Caywood, BA, MA '71

June 10, 2005

Lester Freeman, BA

August 28, 2005

Janis (Holmberg) Gruenhagen, BA
August 5, 2005

Ruth C. Bujold, BA
March 23, 2005

Michael L. Horn, AA
July 17, 2005

Dale E. Matchett, BA
November 13, 2005

John P. McCarthy, BA, MA '81
March, 2005

Thomas G. Anderson, BA
November 23, 2005

Tom "Boppa" Stewart, BA
October 15, 2005

Rose Bjerkness, BA
December 6, 2005

Dwight E. Lahti
September 11, 2005

Larry R. Blokzyl, MA
December 18, 2004



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