Class of 1980 Fall Letter

Fall 2012

Greetings to the Class of ’80!

The Luther campus was full of excitement in early October during Homecoming Weekend. There were concerts, presentations, sports events, reunions, and all sorts of reconnections. Walking around campus brought back many warm memories and also reminded one that Luther continues to grow and change.

Bentdahl Commons has been completed and is a beautiful addition to campus. The renovation of Dieseth Hall was finished this summer and now all the residence halls have been remodeled within the last decade. During the past year, almost half of the food served on campus was grown locally. Luther received the 2012 Second Nature Climate Leadership Award and was one of eight colleges across the country to receive an “A” on the 2011 College Sustainability Report Card. And construction has started on the aquatic center, which is slated to be completed next summer.

More changes are on the horizon. As you are aware, President Rick Torgerson is stepping down next spring and the search for a new president is in process. Potential candidates are being identified; interviews will be held this winter; and a recommendation for the position will be made to the board in February. You can keep up with the process and other Luther news by visiting the website.

Thank you for your contributions to Luther during this past year. Each gift is important, and the Annual Fund supports students and staff with immediate and lasting impact. The college is grateful for the support of its alumni.


Beth (Eide) Bird
1980 Class Agent
[email protected]

Don’t forget your Annual Fund giving!

Each year nearly 9,500 alumni, parents, and friends support the Annual Fund with gifts from $5 to $50,000.  Strong support from alumni helps Luther secure additional funds from foundations and corporations, and your gift each year helps us to reach our goal of 27% alumni giving to the Annual Fund.  Here’s how your class is doing so far this year:


Have you made your 2012 gift to Luther?  Only 55 more gifts are needed to reach 27% for your class.  Please visit to make a difference for Luther students.  Thank you!

Please note: Your Spring 2013 class agent letter will include a listing of your classmates who gave to Luther during 2012.  Be sure to make your gift before December 31 to be included.

*as of October 18, 2012

Class Notes
GREG ANDREWS is a partner at Jackson Lewis, LLP, in Chicago.

JIM FRANCIS teaches and tutors math at ITT Technical Institute in Seattle. He also serves on the board of the Seattle Gilbert and Sullivan Society.

JIM JACKSON retired after 32 years coaching wrestling at Apple Valley High School. Jim holds the best winning percentage in Minnesota’s history at 619-26-3. He had 169 wrestlers qualify for the state tournament, with 131 placing in the top six, and 56 of them becoming state champions. In 2011 and 2012 he also coached the team to consecutive national championships. Jim will continue to teach physical education at Falcon Ridge Middle School.

BRIAN JORGENSEN, KELSEY BRUSO ‘81, and RODOLFO NIETO ‘04 sang in the Minnesota Opera’s world premiere of Silent Night, which tells the story of the Christmas Eve 1914 truce among French, German, and Scottish troops in World War I.

DIANNE (ASFAHL) JUHL is a depth psychologist, financial well-being coach, speaker, and writer at the Feminine Face of Money in Seattle. She is also a doctoral candidate in the Depth Psychology Program at Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara, Calif., researching the financial success of women and the transformative lifestyle changes made to have financial well-being at home and in the workplace.

JIM LaBelle is patron services manager for Bel Canto Chorus and marketing director for Waukesha Choral Union. He also serves on the advisory board for Milwaukee Choral Artists in Milwaukee.

HELEN (HUBIN) MYERS is senior information security manager at Dow Chemical in Midland, Mich.

CHRISTI (MUNSON) NOWLAND is a therapist at Garrison Counseling in La Crosse, Wis. She is also a teaching adjunct at Winona (Minn.) State University.

NAOMI NOWLAND and SCOTT JOHNSON each finished these races in 2011:  the LaCrosse, Wis., half marathon in May, the Des Moines, Iowa, 20K Dam to Dam in June, and the Two Harbors to Duluth, Minn., Grandma’s Marathon in June.

SUSIE PAINE is a land management officer for the Municipality of Anchorage (Alaska).

CHRIS (ALTHUIS) SCHAFER earned a doctorate in leadership from the University of St. Thomas. She is the college librarian and director of the Vogel Library at Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa.

ARNE SORENSON and his wife, Ruth, have funded an ELCA and Lutheran World Relief initiative that fights malaria, especially in Africa.

GREG ORWOLL and Shirley Davis, Sept. 17, 2011



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