Class Notes—Fall 2015
Carolyn Alford ’08 (Battle Creek) received the Kalamazoo YMCA Lifetime Woman of Achievement Award in May 2015. Alford, a longtime official and community leader, is “a devoted member of the Kalamazoo community and has spent her life working toward the betterment of others through services,” according to the award description. “As a mentor and advocate for so many individuals, Carolyn’s dedication to those impacted by poverty, racism or any other form of social or economic marginalization has served as an example for all to follow.” Alford served on the Kalamazoo Public Schools Board of Education for 16 years, and also served four terms on the Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners. She is also past recipient of NAACP Humanitarian of the Year Award (2010) and the YMCA Woman of Achievement Award (2007).
Tod Marshall ’90 was named to a two-year term as Gonzaga University’s Robert K. and Ann J. Powers Professor Chair of the Humanities. The Powers chair is awarded to “an outstanding teacher-scholar in the area of history, philosophy, language or literature,” according to the university. Marshall was also the 2015 recipient of the Humanities Washington Award, which each year honors two individuals or organizations whose efforts “reflect the spirit and programs of Humanities Washington.” His book of poetry, “Bugle,” won the Washington State Book Award. Marshall, who is in his 16th year of teaching at Gonzaga, founded and continues to curate the university’s visiting writer’s series. He said, “I know that much of my success if due to the blessings I received at Siena from Sister Hogan, Sister Schnapp, Sister Hall, Mary Weeber, Mark Schersten and others. I love that place; I love the people.”
From The Sites:
Marcie Gillette ’08 / MA was promoted to community services director by the city of Battle Creek, Mich., in May 2015. She has worked for the city since 1998 and previously served as neighborhood services manager. She will oversee several departments, including planning, code compliance, neighborhood services, inspections and community development.
Teresa Allen was named the executive director of the Charitable Union, which provides children and families in need with clothing, bedding and small household items at no cost. She has more than 15 years of experience working nonprofit organizations.
Jennifer LaGrand is currently employed as a retention coach for Battle Creek Essential Skills Demanded by Great Employers (EDGE), a workforce development program that helps low-income city residents build skills to get and maintain jobs to help them become financially stable.
Cassandra DeMay was recently accepted into the master’s program in gerontology at the University of Southern California. She is taking the program completely online and will reside in Michigan.
Kyle Leighton was appointed the director of marketing for New York City-based North American Manufacturing Enterprises in July 2015. He has eight years of public relations experience, and was honored at the National Association of Electrical Distributors LEAD Conference in Chicago in 2013.
He was named to tED Magazine’s list of emerging electrical industry leaders in the U.S. He will be
based at the company’s headquarters in NYC.
Martha Burnett / MA works as a project manager with the Business and Community Institute in the Lansing (Mich.) area.
Michele Schmalzel had her research published in the Undergraduate Research Journal for the Human Services. The title of her research is: “Assessing Middle School Students Need for a School Counselor.” She completed this research in the Research in Psychology course taught by adjunct professor Dr. Ali Ziegle.
Diane Shearer was featured as part of Marco Island (Fla.) Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Marco program in August 2015. Shearer spent almost 25 years in the health care industry as a radiologic technician and ultrasound clinical applications specialist. She was selected as GE Healthcare’s “Top Talent” in 2008-09. She entered the real estate profession in 2010, and is now a certified Marco Island specialist, an accredited buyer’s representative, an e-Pro and a resort and second-home property specialist.
Eric Rosen works as a paramedic educator with the Temple Health System Transport Team. He lives in Jenkintown, Pa.
Michael Morton ’11 / MA was recently named the plant manager at the Tower International facility in Auburn, Ind. Morton started with the company as a weld technician, working his way up to skilled trades supervisor, controls engineer, skilled trades superintendent and engineering manager before his latest promotion. He said, “my degree has been instru-
mental in that progression. Not only in opening the door, but in using what I learned in my dealings with my colleagues.”
Al Dyer was appointed chief of the Lincoln Park (Mich.) Fire Department in June 2015. Dyer has spent more than two decades with the department, starting as an entry-level firefighter in 1994. He was promoted to fire inspector and marshal before taking over the 18-member department. He also serves as the city’s director of emergency management.
La’Von McLeod was promoted in June 2015 to accessories manager for Cadillac. He will be based in New York City. He previously was the launch manager in the Performance and EV Product and Operations Department at Cadillac’s Warren (Mich.) facility. He has been with General Motors since 1985 and had various positions, including manufacturing engineer, designer, maintenance supervisor, material handling engineer and program manager.
Harmoni Perri Eggert is employed as a respiratory therapist with Henry Ford Wyandotte (Mich.) Hospital. She resides in Riverview, Mich.
Barbara LaBerge Seebaldt and her husband celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary July 31, 2015.
Carol Naccarato was named as the director of the Allied Health Division’s medical assistant program at Glen Oaks (Mich.) Community College. She began her new position in July 2015.
Allan Rodewald sent along some pictures of his recent trip (right) to the Sahara Desert, showing off his alma mater.
Ann Gildner exhibited her sculpture “Free fall” (below right) at the annual Art-Prize event at the Grand Rapids Public Museum. She is also a gallery director and florist for the Coop Floral Shop and Gildner Gallery in Cheboygan, Mich.
Leonardo Rivera is an internal auditor with Corporacion DROLANCA in El Vigia-Merida, Venezuela. He said he thanks God for being able to attend Siena Heights and wants to say hi to his former professor Sister Sharon Weber.
Teresa Harvey Allison / AA is living and working in Houston, Texas, area as an administrative assistant for the Spring (Texas) Intermediate School District. She has three children and two grandchildren.
Kenneth Kops retired from the U.S. Army Sept. 1 after more than 32 years of service. He started out as a private and worked his way up to colonel. He currently works for the U.S. State Department in Washington, D.C., as program manager for Strategic Planning. He and his wife, Young, reside in northern Virginia. He sends his best wishes to all Saints and a “great big hello to the class of 1984!”
John Detro was named a physician assistant consultant to U.S. Surgeon General Patricia Horoho in May 2015. He previously served as deputy chief, Surgical Services Service Line at the Office of The Surgeon General in Falls Church, Va. According to a press release from The Surgeon General’s office, “Detro’s accomplishments have contributed immeasurably to the success of physician assistants throughout the AMEDD and will continue to impact the care to our patients for many years to come.”
Patricia Kaufman was named the new president of Baker College of Clinton Township on Sept. 1,
2015. Kaufman previously served as president of Baker College of Jackson, and has been with the
institution since 1994 in various roles, including career services coordinator and vice president of academics.
Scott McClure was named the new commissioner of the Kentucky Inter-collegiate Athletic Conference in July 2015. He became the conference’s first full-time commissioner. McClure was previously athletic director at MacMurray College in Jacksonville, Ill.
Allan Harris was named the head men’s basketball coach at Mid-Atlantic Christian College in Elizabeth City, N.C., in May 2015. He also serves as pastor of the First Baptist Church in Gates, N.C., and was an assistant coach for two seasons for MACC.
Brenda Perry was recently hired as an eighth-grade teacher at the Fourth Street Learning Center by Jackson (Mich.) Public Schools.
Matthew Ostapowicz was promoted to captain of the West Service Area for the Grand Rapids (Mich.) Police Department in March 2014.
Kerri Webb Morrin recently became Chief Operation Officer of the Small Business Capital Group at Paragron in Decatur, Ga. She previously had served in many banking roles before her current appointment, including as vice president of two other banks in the Atlanta (Ga.) metro area.
Scott Suchy has been the art director for City Paper of Charleston, S.C., since 2008.
Keith and Wendy Ann Kirkbride Rusie announced the birth of a son, Evan Dominic, on May 30, 2015. He was 6 lbs., 10 oz., and was 20 inches long. The Rusies reside in Grand Blanc, Mich.
Tera Cheek Murphy was promoted to vice president of marketing at First Federal Bank, which has 33 locations in Ohio, Indiana and Michigan. She and her husband Gregory, and their son, Kenden, reside in Defiance, Ohio.
Jennifer Letherer has just published a new nonfiction volume through Praeger called “Remote Virtue: A Christian Guide to Intentional Media Viewing.” She is currently an associate professor in the Department of Communication and Media at Spring Arbor University, and director for SAU Drama.
Sean Burns was appointed as inside sales specialist for Haviland Products Co. in April 2015. He has more than 12 years of hospitality business management experience.
Shawncey Cook-Aguirre / MA is currently in his seventh year at Hopkinsville (Ky.) High School, teaching English and yearbook productions. He said he loves teaching, making a difference and working with other teachers/administration. He also works for Upward Bound at Hopkinsville Community College as a tutor and teaches summer English courses.
Anthony Butler was recently named a campus minister at St. Joseph’s College in Rensselaer, Ind.
Ron Crampton was recently selected as director of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration National Training Center, which is a U.S. Department of Transportation law enforcement center with more than 20,000 students annually. He resides in Maryville, Tenn.
Catrina Ossmann has advanced to phase II of competition for the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award which is sponsored by the NASCAR Foundation. The award is given to a NASCAR fan who has made a profound impact on children in the local community. She is also a member of the Communities in Schools board.
Elizabeth Artz works as the director of Fraternity and Sorority Life at Union College in Schenectady, N.Y.
Jeremy Eddie is currently a sixth-grade social studies teacher and middle school athletic director at Greenville (S.C.) County Schools. He is also currently completing his EdS at Oakland University in educational leadership with certification as a building-level principal.
Tyler Kemper interned in the General Counsel’s Office of Tata Motors in Mumbai, India, in summer 2015. Kemper is a third-year law student at Wayne St. (Mich.) University. He said his ultimate goal is to work as an in-house counsel across many areas of corporate law.
Zachary Stultz is working in public relations and on the pit crew for Carter 2 Motorsports, a team that races in the ARCA Racing Series.
Chris Schurr was recently sworn in by fellow SHU graduate Captain Matt Ostapowicz ’96 (right) as a new member of the Grand Rapids (Mich.) Police Department.
Matthew Hilkens / MA was recently named the assistant women’s basketball coach at Hillsdale (Mich.) College. He previously served as an assistant women’s basketball coach and as an admissions graduate assistant at SHU.
Sister Cathryn Deutsch, OP ’42
Sister Mary Jean Birney, OP ’43
Charlotte Stifler ’45
Sister Virginia Maria LaTourelle, OP, ’49
Sister Patricia McGrath, OP ’50
Sister Elaine Lederer, OP ’51
Sister Constance Kelly, OP ’52
Sister Thomas James Burns, OP ’53
Sister Catherine Podvin, OP ’53
Sister Mary Ripplinger, OP ’53
Sister Bernadette Mary Syron, OP ’53
Sister Loretta Mellon, OP ’54
Sister Mildred Ann Huber, OP ’55
Sister Ann Marie Meagher, OP ’55
Sister Helen Belsito, OP ’59
Sister Delores Slosar, OP ’59
Eugenia Cusick Stoll ’59
Sister Patricia Walsh, OP ’59
Sister Joann Weigang, OP ’60
Mary Katherine Kinkema ’61
Sister Mary Catherine Evans, OP ’63
Antoinette Morrison ’64
Sister Barb Stanek, OP ’65
Sister Sharon Culhane, OP ’67
Sister Ruth Arnott ’70
Robert Neal Sharp ’76
Debra Sprow ’79
Jayne Meadows (actress), ’80 / Hon.
Christopher “Kit” Daniels ’00
Joni Goodrow ’03
Barbara Gruden ’04
Taibun Nahar Roshd, ’06 / Hon.