We hope this message finds you well! It is the start of another busy school year, and time for another update from your friendly Class Agents.
Homecoming Weekend at Luther is later this year – October 26-28 – and we wanted to provide you with some information about the event! This year, Luther will celebrate two important milestones during Homecoming. First, the Black Student Union (BSU) commemorates its 50th anniversary this fall. 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—so mark your calendars. Luther’s Nursing Department also observes its 40th anniversary this fall. During Homecoming Weekend, an alumna 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 addition to these Homecoming events, Luther will welcome many speakers, performers, and artists to campus throughout the year.
Most have heard that President Paula Carlson will retire at the end of this 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 leadership team, and achieved Luther’s goal of reducing its carbon footprint by 50 percent by the end of 2015. 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 2019–2020 academic year. Please watch for information as the search unfolds!
If you want to update your alumni information or get in touch with other alumni, be sure to check out the online Alumni Directory at luther.edu/alumni/directory. If you don’t have an account, you can create one by calling the Luther Technology Help Desk at (563)387-1000. We ask that you keep Luther updated on your life happenings, too—new jobs, the additions of children to your families, marriages, and other special accomplishments are all important to share!
Our class continues to make me proud; many of us have given financially to Luther throughout our 11 years since graduation, and many more have given of their time through various programmatic efforts. Luther has provided each of us with many opportunities for success, and it is important for us to carry that legacy forward for future generations of Luther students by visiting luther.edu/giving/. Your gifts to the Luther Fund – an unrestricted giving fund – allow for Luther to allocate funding to support whatever student and campus needs exist.
Luther also has an Alumni referral program, where we are able to refer prospective high school students to Luther for a $1,000 renewable scholarship. Visit luther.edu/ambassadors for additional information or to refer a student. Thank you for your ongoing generosity and support of our alma mater!
Happy fall to all of you, and blessings for a peaceful, joy-filled remainder of the year. Please stay in touch!
Soli Deo Gloria,
Sarah (Quick) Olejniczak
2007 class agents:
Sarah (Quick) Olejniczak
N27W22538 Burningwood Lane
Waukesha WI 53186
Daniel Le Guen-Schmidt
10870 N. Stelling Road, # 58L
Cupertino, CA 95014
Megan (St. Clair) Nelson
2624 E. Hill Road
Beloit, WI 53511-2152
Duffey Ainsworth Jr. is scrum master at LKQ Corporation in Nashville, Tenn.
Nathaniel Anderson is rector at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Williamstown, Mass.
Christina (Gaard) Baumgart is a clinical pharmacy specialist in ambulatory care with Veterans Affairs River Valley Outpatient Clinic in La Crosse, Wis.
Susie (Bissen) and Zach Esker live in Kansas City. Susie is a physical science technician at GIPSA-USDA and Zach is an actuary at Swiss Re.
Mindi (Scott) Johnson is a registered nurse at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas.
Amy (Schmeidel) Klein is a palliative care physician at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich.
Joseph Koenig earned a doctor of nurse anesthesia practice degree from Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences, College of Medicine, in Rochester, Minn.
Carly (Elmgren) Kragthorpe teaches Spanish immersion at Eastern Carver County Schools in Chaska, Minn.
Scott Marx is senior clinical trial manager at Sarah Cannon Research Institute in Nashville, Tenn.
Garrett McAllister is a planner for the City of The Dalles, Ore.
Tyler Schwaller earned a doctor of theology degree in New Testament and early Christianity from Harvard University and is assistant professor of religious studies at Wesleyan College in Macon, Ga.
Carissa Sojka earned a master’s degree in women’s studies and a Ph.D. in sociology from the University at Albany, SUNY.
Jonathan Stavast is a territory sales representative at Acelity in Green Bay, Wis.
Tyler Strand is writer and editor at the University of Iowa Center for Advancement in Iowa City. Tyler wrote the cover feature on legendary Hawkeye coach, Hayden Fry, for the September 2017 issue of Iowa Alumni Magazine.
Mark Strohbehn earned a master’s degree in international security studies from Georgetown University. He is senior program manager at Development Transformations in Washington, D.C., where he manages a portfolio of humanitarian relief, economic development, and analytical programs implemented in Syria on behalf of the U.S., U.K., and German governments.
Jud Taylor is clinical research associate at Abbott in Plymouth, Minn.
Katelyn (Zuck) Turnis is pediatric nurse manager at Allen Memorial Hospital in Waterloo, Iowa.
Brian (Meyer) Waismeyer earned a master’s degree in information management from the University of Washington and is a UX researcher at Facebook in Seattle.
Whitney Welsh is complex coordinator for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Rebecca Westphal and Chris Sorenson live in Madison, Wis. Rebecca is a technical business analyst at SSM Health, and Chris is a software developer at TDS Telecom.
ANDY NUMEDAHL and Katie Kuelbs, Aug. 26, 2016
GENEVIEVE PLAGENS and Nathaniel Swanson, Dec. 9, 2017
Katie and DUFFEY AINSWORTH welcomed a son, Boone Badger, in October 2017.
Jessica and CHRIS ANGELICA welcomed a daughter, Rose Lind, in October 2017.
SARA (WALTERS) '09 and CHRIS GRAVERSON welcomed a son, Collin Michael, in August 2017.
Katie and ANDY NUMEDAHL welcomed a daughter, Halley Marie, in December 2017.
ANNA (AMUNDSON) and Tor Oksnevad welcomed a son, Leif Erik, March 2018.
KATIE (LOVELL) and ROSS STEDMAN '08 welcomed a son, Wilder, in June 2017.
JANA (KEMP) '08 and ZACH TUCKER welcomed a daughter, Blakely, in April 2017.
DARCI (KUNZ) and JOSH WILSON '06 welcomed a daughter, Elaina Jillmarie, in January 2018.
KATIE (HARROLD) and SETH WORTHINGTON '08 welcomed a son, Joseph, in May 2016.