Class of 1985 Fall 2019 Letter

Fall 2019

Dear 1985/35 Classmates,

Keep 35 in your minds for the next year.  35 years since our graduation from the hallowed halls of Luther!!  Buckle your seat belts as the reunion committee is busy planning an outstanding, exciting, and exhilarating get together.  Maybe bring a “flash camera” or a video recorder to help remind us how far we have come with technology and the anticipation of getting the photos back from the photo shop. 

It promises to be an exciting year for Luther. In November, the college inaugurated its eleventh president, Dr. Jenifer K. Ward. President Ward joins the Luther community with more than three decades of experience as an educator, scholar, and academic leader after serving, most recently, as provost and dean of the college at Centenary College in Shreveport, Louisiana. Prior to joining Centenary, President Ward served in several leadership roles at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, Washington, including dean of the college, interim provost, and associate provost. She was also a faculty member at Gustavus Adolphus College, where she taught German.           

In a message to the Luther community, President Ward said, “Our work together must be strategic, collaborative, creative, and—most importantly—must articulate what it means to be both grounded in Decorah, Iowa with a face to the world, and set goals for how we can adapt Luther’s past and present for a sustainable future.”

A self-described extrovert and lover of art, film, and literature, President Ward started her duties at Luther July 1, and her official inauguration took place November 1–3.

Learn more about President Ward—including her thoughts on food, art, Twitter, Decorah, and higher ed—on Luther’s YouTube channel (, then search “Luther College President Ward”) or in the fall issue of the Luther Magazine:

Also, while you’re at it, use this checklist to up your Luther social media game:

❏    Follow Luther College on Twitter: @LutherCollege

❏    Follow Luther College on Instagram: @LutherCollege

❏    Follow the Luther College Alumni Facebook page:

In class news, we have several classmates that are published authors including: 

Joy A. Schroeder—professor of church history at Trinity Lutheran Seminary, professor of religion at Capital University, and holder of the Bergener Chair of Theology and Religion at both schools in Columbus, Ohio.  One of her most recent books is The Book of Jeremiah (The Bible in Medieval Tradition).

Karen (Wilken) Braun—professor of accounting at Case Western Reserve University.  One of her books includes Managerial Accounting.

Kaleen Marshall—she recently published a book Who Will Love Me: choosing hope in the unexpected journey of caring for my sister with disabilities after the death of our parents.

The above accomplished women represent just a few of our classmates who have had their words published and read by thousands of people.  If you haven’t seen or read their books, check them out and see how these women have inspired others with their wisdom.

And, finally, keep in mind that Christmas at Luther takes place December 5–8. This year’s theme is Whom Angels Greet with Anthems Sweet. Luther would be happy to see you there!

Think 35!!

Your Co-Class Agents,

Charles Hoven
1985 Class Agent
5841 N. Kenmore, # 1
Chicago, IL 60660
[email protected]

Jane (Theodore) Bakker
1985 Class Agent
409 Division Street
Oak Park, IL 60302-1438
[email protected]



Philip DeVries is a trust officer at ANB Bank in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Kevin Dotseth is a system architect for John Deere Financial in Johnston, Iowa.

Charlie Hoven is operations manager with Applause Catering and Events in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Jim Looft is director of sales and marketing at KS2 Technologies in Grapevine, Texas.

Mike Noll was inducted into the Illinois Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame on March 30, 2019. Noll is 235-73 over 29 seasons as a head coach, a winning percentage of .763. He coached 16 seasons at McHenry, 12 at Glenbrook South and last year at Richmond-Burton High School. His teams have been to the playoffs 27 times. In his first season at the helm of Richmond-Burton last fall, the team finished 11-2 losing to eventual Class 4A state champion IC Catholic in the semifinals.

Sally (Rolloff) Orr is product manager, inside sales at ElectroTech, Inc. in Minneapolis.


Paul J. Moore of Lincoln, Neb., died Dec. 4, 2018, age 56.

The full obituary of the classmate listed above can be found on the Luther College website at:

If you would like a printout of the obituary listed above in its entirety mailed to you, please contact us at: [email protected], or 563-387-1509.