Class of 2003 Fall Letter

Fall 2012

Dear Class of 2003 Classmates,

It’s been a terrific fall semester at Luther! New enrolled students total 681 and come from throughout the U.S. and 25 other countries. Construction on the new Aquatic Center is well underway and will be completed in the summer (you can search on the Internet for “Luther Aquatic Center” and check out the YouTube video). A stunning solar array, the largest in the state of Iowa, now supplies energy for Baker Village and propels Luther even closer to its carbon reduction goals. The Howard Hughes Medical Institute selected Luther to receive a $1.5M grant for its science education Preparing Future K-12 Teachers program—an amazing accolade for the college, and Luther is now ranked among the top 100 liberal arts colleges in the U.S. 

But if you put any stock in the adage all good things must end, you won’t be surprised that President Torgerson will end his service as Luther’s president this summer.  The college is incredibly fortunate to have had his and Mrs. Torgerson’s leadership since 1999, and a celebration to honor the Torgersons is set for sometime in April.  The search for Luther’s next president is in progress, with plans to name the college’s new leader, its 10th president, in February 2013.

Another great honor for Luther was announced recently, when senior Georgianna "Annie" Whiteley of Wayzata, Minn., was named a Rhodes Scholar.  Annie was selected from a pool of 838 candidates nominated by their colleges and universities. She was the only student from an Iowa school selected for the honor. We are especially thrilled with Annie’s selection, as it affirms the type of education Luther offers—one that moves students beyond immediate interests and present knowledge into a larger world. Rhodes Scholarships provide all expenses for two or three years of study at the University of Oxford in England, and may allow funding in some instances for four years. One of 32 outstanding scholars selected, Annie will begin studies at Oxford in October 2013. She has maintained a 3.988 GPA while majoring in chemistry and pursuing a minor in biology at Luther. Annie is Luther’s 8th Rhodes Scholar.

Please stay in touch with Luther. If your name hasn’t been on the classmate updates list in awhile, let the Alumni Office know where you are and what you’re doing these days. Your classmates would like to know!  Also, mark your calendars for Homecoming 2013―October 4-6―and our 10-year reunion.  Check out Decorah area lodging.

Thank you for your past support to Luther students,

Jessica (Romens) Schouten
2003 Class Agent
[email protected]

Joel Sommers
2003 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 56 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
AMANDA ARMSTRONG teaches social studies at Queen’s Grant High School in Mint Hill, N.C.

MATT BEATTY is director of international admissions at Indiana University in Bloomington.

NARREN BROWN is assistant director of analytic support and institutional research at Grinnell (Iowa) College.

SARAH (ROOT) ’02 and JON BENGTSON live in North Liberty, Iowa.

KENDRA (NORDICK) BINGER is a regional care consultant for the Alzheimer’s Association of MN-ND in Fargo, N.D.

ERIN (GULLICKSON) ’02 and RYAN CONWAY live in Iowa City, Iowa. Ryan is a surgery resident at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

GINA (ALLEN) ERICKSON earned a doctorate in sociology with a graduate minor in population studies from the University of Minnesota.

RIAN HELGERSON is a training and event manager at Ameriprise Financial in Minneapolis.

ANGELA (DEMMER) HIETALA earned a master’s degree in education at Ashford University.

JUSTIN JAEGER is an agent at New York Life Insurance Co. in Milwaukee.

EMILY (ROCK) JOHN earned a master’s degree in piano pedagogy from Bowling Green State University. She owns Headwaters Music in Mound, Minn.

JANA (CHMELAR) KLAUKE is associate director of M.B.A. Career Services at the Tippie School of Management at the University of Iowa in Iowa City.

STEPHANIE (CITTA) KLEIN earned a master’s degree in music education from the University of Dayton (Ohio).

JESSICA (WROBEL) KOENIG is a principal HR generalist at Medtronic in Columbia Heights, Minn.

EMILIE (FRALEY) LARSON is a business analyst and forms designer at Thrivent Financial for Lutherans in Appleton, Wis.

AMANDA (BOEHMKE) MADER is an administrative assistant at Ryan, Hodgins, and Associates CPAs in Eden Prairie, Minn.

SHERYL (GERBER) McCammon earned a master’s degree in organizational leadership and a certificate in ethics and leadership from St. Catherine University. She is senior clinical research associate at Medtronic in Minneapolis.

ANDREW PETER earned a doctor of optometry degree from Pacific University College of Optometry. He is an optometrist at Homer (Alaska) Eyecare.

EVAN PETERSON is research director at Friends of Sherrod Brown in Washington, D.C.

JOHN POVOLNY is director of bands at Henry Sibley High School in West St. Paul, Minn., and instructs percussion at Bethel University.

BRONSON POWER is a senior financial analyst with Mayo Clinic Health System in Mankato, Minn.

JESSE REYERSON is a business analyst at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville.

Luther alumni Kirk Johnson '82 (Luther associate director of alumni relations), Josh Hildebrand '02, Jesse Reyerson '03, Peter Ylvisaker '84, and Jerry Wright '78 were among the competitors in the Almanzo 100, a 100-mile bike race on gravel roads between Spring Valley and Preston, Minn., last May. Temperatures were in the upper 80s, with wind gusts of up to 40 miles per hour.

TYNE’ (STEELE) RIECK is a quality assistant with Genesis Health System in Davenport, Iowa.

JACQUE RUEN is a physical therapist, lecturer, and research assistant at Ohio State University in Columbus.

MEGAN SALLEY is a communications specialist at Highland Community College in Freeport, Ill.; she also serves as a job coach for the Rockford Public School District.

JUSTIN SANDS earned a master’s degree in music education from the VanderCook College of Music. He is director of choirs at College Community Schools in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

JOE SIEVERS is a faculty recruiter at DeVry University in Wood Dale, Ill.

COURTNEY (SCHUBERT) STANGL works at St. Luke’s Child Life Ministries in Waukesha, Wis.

ARVID VON TAUBE is an associate attorney at Masterman, Culbert, and Tully in Boston.

TIFFANY (ALLEN) WEST earned a master’s degree in nursing from Western Governors University. She is a registered nurse in the emergency department of Great River Medical Center in West Burlington, Iowa.

RYAN WIELAND is pastor at Country Chapel United Methodist Church in Dowling, Mich.

TIM ZICK is the math department chair at Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, Wis.

CAROLYN (YOUNES) '04 and EVAN ALMELIEN welcomed a son, Charles, in June 2012.  Charles joins brother Edward, born in September 2010.

TANYA (LEAKE) and MARK ANDERSON welcomed a daughter, Lily, in June 2011.   

EMILY (LUNDQUIST) '04 and AARON BARNES welcomed a daughter, Lucia, in February 2012.

SARAH (ROOT) '02 and JON BENGTSON welcomed a son, Aaron, in January 2012.   

KATE (SWENSON) and JOSH CINNAMO welcomed a son, Tate, in December 2011.   

ERIN (GULLICKSON) '02 and RYAN CONWAY welcomed a daughter, Emeline, and a son, Miles, in May 2011.

ANN (ECKERMAN) and JOE DEVER '01 welcomed a daughter, Amelia, in November 2011.  Amelia joins sister Linnea and brother William.

GINA (ALLEN) and NATE ERICKSON '01 welcomed a son, Samuel, in May 2012.   

JACKIE (HALVERSON) and Ben Inbody welcomed a daughter, Harper, in February 2012. 

KELLY (HAVE) and JOSH JANSEN '02 welcomed a son, Beckett, in January 2012.   

EMILY (ROCK) and Brian John welcomed a son, Walter, in January 2011.

ABBY (SULLIVAN) and Coral Kenyon welcomed a daughter, Madelyn, in November 2011.          

Natalie and TADE KERNDT welcomed a son, Heaton, in August 2010.  Heaton joins sisters Kylie and Kelby.

STEPHANIE (CITTA) and Scott Klein welcomed a daughter, Evangelyn, born and adopted in December 2011.

STACY (MALECHA) '08 and JIM KOWITZ welcomed a daughter, Ella, in May 2012.   

HEATHER (SCHEUMANN) and MATT LANDERS welcomed a son, Kieran, in September 2011.          

EMILIE (FRALEY) and ROSS LARSON '02 welcomed a son, Andrew, in June 2011.   

MEGAN (LARSEN) and Mike Lovinguth welcomed a son, Connor, in October 2011.   

CARRIE (WALLING) and JACOB NIMROD '01 welcomed a son, Leonard, in April 2011.  Leonard joins brother Clarence.

ALISSA (BROWN) and Josh Plumley welcomed a daughter, Savannah, in February 2011. 

Caroline and JOHN POVOLNY welcomed a son, Linden, in September 2011.   

Kari and BRYAN PRATT welcomed a daughter, Celia, in October 2011.  Celia joins sister Leila.

Meghan and JUSTIN SANDS welcomed a son, August, in October 2011.          

JENNI (BOERGER) and Chris Sewell welcomed a son, Henry, in March 2012. 

Amy and JOE SIEVERS welcomed a son, Jackson, in October 2011.     

LAURA (AMUNDSON) and ALEX SMITH welcomed a son, Bennett, in January 2012.   

SARAH (COOLEY) and Dan Solberg welcomed a son, Sawyer, in December 2011.  Sawyer joins sister Isabelle.

COURTNEY (SCHUBERT) and Michael Stangl welcomed a daughter, Nayeli, in October 2011.  

CHRISTIE (MORSE) and ERICK WEEG '04 welcomed a son, Henrik, in May 2011.  Henrik joins sister Aune.

JACQUELINE HALVERSON and Benjamin Inbody, July 23, 2011
EMILY ROCK and Brian John, Sept. 12, 2009
EVAN PETERSON and Jennifer White, Oct. 22, 2011
COURTNEY SCHUBERT and Michael Stangl, May 7, 2011
TIFFANY ALLEN and Jim West, May 7, 2011



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