Class of 1990 Fall 2018 Letter

Fall 2018 

Hi Class of 1990!

With both my parents being Luther grads, I grew up traveling to Decorah for Homecomings and Nordic Fests. I happened to be in Decorah this last weekend and it was the absolute first time in history that I did not go to Mabe’s OR The Whippy Dip on a visit there!  Granted, I was literally in town for 19 hours but still… Instead, we had a nice dinner in the restaurant at Hotel Winneshiek then an amazing brunch at Rubaiyat all with family on the Lee side. I also managed a super quick visit to the beautiful Dunning’s Spring before heading home. Hopefully, you’ll be able to do the same if you attend Homecoming this year, which is scheduled for October 26-28.

This year, Luther will celebrate two important milestones during Homecoming Weekend. First, the Black Student Union (BSU) commemorates its 50th anniversary this fall. (Hmmm… we all know about celebrating 50 years, right??!)  There are several events planned during Homecoming and throughout the year to celebrate the founding of the organization—including forums, lectures, a brunch, and a BSU reunion. Luther’s Nursing Department also observes a birthday—its 40th—this fall. Homecoming Weekend, Kris Dreifuerst ’85 will lead a workshop for nursing educators and deliver the Ironside Distinguished (Alumni) Lecture in Nursing, which will be followed by an open house at Luther’s simulation lab.

In August, the college welcomed 575 new students to campus. Guess what they all did over the summer? They read a book. A book we all will remember from Paideia: The Odyssey. Yes, it’s still in the curriculum! This year’s edition however, comes with a twist: it’s the first English translation by a woman, Emily Wilson, and by all accounts it’s a vivid, engaging, and sprightly retelling of the classic homecoming story. Hmmmmmmm…..

Finally, most have heard that President Paula Carlson will retire at the end of the 2018–19 academic year. During her time at Luther, President Carlson added several academic programs to the college, renewed outdoor facilities, expanded Luther’s Career Center services, developed and launched the “Next Steps for Sophomores” program, added a dean of institutional equity and inclusion to Luther’s staff, and achieved Luther’s goal of reducing its carbon footprint by 50 percent by the end of 2015, among other things. Luther’s Board of Regents is taking the necessary steps in the presidential search process with the hope of transitioning leadership over the course of next summer and having a new president in place for the 2019–20 academic year.

While changes are afoot at our alma mater, Luther also holds tight to its traditions, like keeping in touch with valued alumni like you!  We hope you’ll let us know what’s new in your life too!

Best wishes for a fall that’s as beautiful as it is in the Oneota Valley!

Soli Deo Gloria,

Ann Lee

1990 class agents:

Ann (Edwards) Lee
708 Ray Street
Lake Mills, WI 53551
[email protected]

Sarah Thomson
2712 Isle Royale Court
Burnsville, MN 55337-3424
[email protected]


Jennifer (Birgerson) and D. Allan Boettger ‘89 live in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Jennifer is director of advancement services at Coe College, and Allan is senior director of corporate and community outreach at University of Iowa.

Vanessa (Grima Baldacchino) Frazier received Brazil’s highest honor - Dama di Gran Croce - in the Order of Rio de Branco for her work in coordinating the evacuation of around 3,000 Brazilians from Libya and enhancing Maltese-Brazilian relations.

Daniel Grossmann is resins technical services manager at Dianal America, Inc., a group company of Mitsubushi Chemical America, in Pasadena, Texas. 

John Storsved is department chair and associate professor at Millikin University in Decatur, Ill.

Christopher Terry is vice president of business development at Knutson Construction in Brooklyn Park, Minn.

Kris Tjaden was named a fellow of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Fellowship is one of the highest forms of recognition of an individual’s accomplishments given by ASHA. Kris is a professor in the Department of Communicative Disorders and Sciences at the State University of New York at Buffalo.