Fall 2009 Class Agent Letter

Fall 2009

Dear Friends of the Class of ’75,

I am already counting the days and looking ahead on the calendar! Truly! Are you? Please take out that permanent skinny marker, turn to the last page of your calendar, and write:

October 8-10, 2010

Our reunion won’t be complete without YOU ~ I absolutely mean that! Your former roommates; dorm friends; lab and study partners; teammates; choir, band, and ensemble members; professors; directors; and coaches will all be looking for YOU~ so please make the decision now to join us!  And check out the lodging link on Luther’s website, http://www2.luther.edu/about/decorah/lodging

Your presence will be a great gift to us all!  I’d appreciate if you would contact me with your suggestions for how to make this our best reunion ever. In addition, I am recruiting for our reunion organizational committee ~ so if you’d enjoy participating with the planning, please let me know!  A humorous class agent meeting moment this fall occurred when an elderly class agent interjected, “My class will just be looking for ramp access and strong amplification systems ~ and please make ours at noon, as we’ll all be asleep before an evening gathering!”  J  We’re young, we’re vital, and we have this rich common journey, as well as years of life, to share with one another:  vocations, avocations, celebrations, life’s detours, families, challenges, travels, dreams….!  I’m excited!

Visualizing your return to Luther College, you can anticipate many facets the same, but you will also appreciate significant changes.  The campus is as beautiful and welcoming as you remember it, overlooking the bluffs covered in subtle russets and gold this fall and the Upper Iowa River meandering through the Oneota Valley.  You will appreciate the Dahl Centennial Union renovation, the award-winning Sampson Hoffland Laboratories science building, the restructured Valders (no more 117!), stately new campus signage, the cohesive inner campus now uninterrupted by traffic, the new blue track, and the hybrid fleet of vehicles navigating campus.

The powerful sense of community permeates Luther.  As my mom advised me 38 years ago when I was making this pivotal college decision, Luther students and alums always share this special bond, whether we’re 17 or 90, no matter what our geography or life path.  As Dave and I attend concerts or athletic events, theater performances or alumni meetings, we find this so true.  And we are so grateful for our Luther education and experience!

With this heritage comes our sense of responsibility to the new generation of Luther students.  Luther College requires the support of her alumni to continue this strong heritage as a community of education and faith.  Thank you for deciding today to join us in making your contribution to the Luther College Annual Fund!   You can make an online gift at givenow.luther.edu.  Your gift truly makes a difference!  Major foundations look to the number of alums who support Luther when they make their decisions to grant major gifts to our alma mater.  And of course: recommend a Luther visit to that outstanding high school student from your community (check out that new alumni referral scholarship!); attend a Luther event in your area; visit campus for a concert, a play, an athletic contest, or Lutherlag ~ and continue to be the contributing person you are in your sphere of the world, a representative of the excellence of Luther College community.

We look forward to hearing from you and to seeing you soon!  Hopefully in your next visit to Decorah, somewhere between stops at Whippy Dip, Mabes, and our reunion celebrations, you’ll slide in a visit to Dave and me at our cabin in the hills northeast of Decorah!  Of course, you’ll need to admire pictures of our three beautiful little granddaughters…!

Blessings to you and your family!

Kris Peterson


Kris (Silseth) Peterson
1975 Class Agent
[email protected]

PS. “Luther College Women and Work Study”
Luther Professor of Accounting RAMONA “MONA” (FELLER) NELSON ’75 is conducting a research project on the career history, leadership experiences, entrepreneurial pursuits, work/life balance experiences, and general work-related perceptions of Luther alumnae from the graduation years of 1969-94. Women from the 1969-94 grad years are invited to participate in an online survey at the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=x_2ff8dDNR8F96f3gdck4Xfw_3d_3d

If you have already completed the survey, thank you.  If you did not receive previous notice of the survey, please go to the web address and complete it before January 5, 2010. Questions can be directed to Mona at [email protected]. 

Class Notes
THOMAS DAHLE is a member of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra 50th Anniversary Chorale with music director Dale Warland. During the 2008-09 season, the chorale will perform in nine concerts with the SPCO including performances of James MacMillan’s “Seven Last Words form the Cross,” and Haydn’s “The Creation.” Thomas is also president of the board of directors of the Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson, Wis.

DOUG FREEMAN of Minneapolis was commissioned by the Trout Run Trail 28E committee in Decorah to sculpt a life-size bronze figure to be placed along the Decorah Trail.

DENNIS HEALY is principal at Berlin Central High School in Cherry Plain, N.Y.

DENICE HOGGATT works in customer service on-site for the Hewlett-Packard Company in San Antonio, Texas, and just celebrated twenty-five years with the company.

JONATHAN JORDAHL is a visiting professor at Kyungpook National University in Daegu, South Korea. He is developing the first university-based program in Korea offering gifted education in English for middle school students and is working to promote methods for communicative use of language in the classroom.

DEBRA (JOHNSON) LINK is a customs and border protection officer for the Department of Homeland Security/Customs and Border Protection in Metaline Falls, Wash.

SUE (BERGER) OLTROGGE is an administrative assistant for Deloitte in Minneapolis.

BLAKE TITRUD was promoted to executive director and assistant general counsel of    J. P. Morgan and Company, Inc., in New York.

THOMAS HASTINGS of Maple Grove, Minn., died Oct. 6, 2008, at age 55 after a courageous battle with cancer. He worked as a mortgage banker for Bell Mortgage. Tom was a kind, gentle man who loved his family, friends, fishing, and Neil Young. He is survived by wife Debra, two children, and his parents.

Homecoming 2009

{ Return to 1975 for more posts. }


  • December 10 2009 at 2:01 pm
    Michael Adams

    I recently relocated from Seattle, WA to Baltimore, MD and accepted a postion with Fleet Services, Inc. out of Milwaukee, WI as their National Fleet Manager with my primary territory/responsiblity in the Northeast.  I also was married in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado on November 24th to Faye Harris.  Life is Great!!!

  • December 10 2009 at 2:49 pm
    Mona Nelson

    Nice letter, Kris.  Cy and I will host the Ronnie's rolls, coffee and juice reception during the homecoming parade.


  • January 14 2010 at 3:56 pm
    Karen Rossing Grandall

    I have enjoyed being Interim pastor at Kanawha, Iowa, (between Mason City and Fort Dodge) and meeting again two education majors:  Marilyn___ Ziegler and Belinda Johnson ______.  Last year I was in Armstrong, Iowa, and the organist was Glenn Henriksen, who I think, roomed with Lee Henderson 1 year.  (Is that right, Lee?)