Luther Alumni Magazine

Class Notes, 1962–2021

1962–1969 / 1970–1979 / 1980–1989 / 1990–1999 / 2000–2009 / 2010–2019 / 2020–2021


Adrian Johnson is a museum curator at the Dahl Automotive Museum in La Crosse, Wis.


Sharon (Kuehl) Stade of Garnavillo, Iowa, is an organist at St. Paul Lutheran Church.


Samuel Platts '64
Samuel Platts '64

Samuel Platts retired from teaching after 22 years at City of Angels school in Los Angeles. He was also pastor of Church of the Foothills for 37 years. He served in the US Naval Reserve for 28 years. His recently published a book, Platts in Vietnam, available from Amazon.


David Ellingson of Edmonds, Wash., published a book titled Paddle Pilgrim: Kayaking the Mississippi River Headwaters in a Time of Climate Change. This is the fourth Paddle Pilgrim book, with previous journeys chronicling adventures on the Erie Canal, Hudson River, and Fjords of Norway.


Nola Ekern Nackerud is the project coordinator at Bend Sister City Foundation in Esteli, Nicaragua.

Paul Grabow of Richardson, Texas, retired as professor emeritus of computer science at Baylor University.

Kerry Knodle is the principal percussionist for the Rockford (Ill.) Symphony Orchestra.

Tom Ninnemann of Jackson, Wyo., is news director for Jackson Hole Radio.

Richard Rollefson is interim pastor at Mt. Camel Lutheran Church in San Luis Obispo, Calif.

Todd Smith is owner of Global Assistance Resources in West Des Moines, Iowa.

Steve Sorenson of Ripon, Wis., received the Wisconsin Law Foundation’s 2021 Charles L. Goldberg Distinguished Service Award.

Judy Vopava of Lisbon, Iowa, is a retired academic advisor.


Carl Homstad is an award-winning artist in Decorah. An exhibition of pieces that best represent his career, An Artist’s Journey: Carl Homstad, 50 Years, was recently featured at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum.


Shelley Smith-Fletcher and Fred Fletcher ’72 live in Winona, Minn. Shelley has retired from Southern Minnesota Legal Services. Fred is the principal of LPL Financial.


Nathan Aaseng of Eau Claire, Wis., has published more than 170 books. His most recent is I Wonder: Mind-Freeing Encounters with God.

Jon Blumhagen and his wife, Earline, set out on a 5,400-mile trip on nonmotorized recumbent ICE tricycles last year from their home in Orlando, Fla., to Alaska on their Mission Possible Tour #4. They traveled through 19 states in 143 days and climbed more than 182,500 feet along the way. Photos, videos, and more information about the trip can be found at

Cheryl (Boyum) Meyer of Appleton, Wis., is a retired elementary music specialist.

Jeffrey Nelson is a family physician who served the Cottage Grove, Minn., area for over 38 years, retiring in 2020. He is author of a new book, What Should I Do?: A Family Physician Discusses Abortion, Religious Freedom, and Difficult Decisions.


Becky White of Council Bluffs, Iowa, is a retired physical education teacher.


Glenn Monson is an ELCA pastor at Mount Olive Lutheran Church in Rochester, Minn. He has also published his second book, Quarantining with God: Daily Devotions from a Pastoral Heart, a collection of devotions he wrote for his congregation in the first year of the pandemic. A second volume is in the works.

Anne (Peterson) and Chuch Pietscher ’76 received the Spirit of Keokuk Award for 2022 by Main Street Keokuk and the Keokuk Chamber of Commerce. The couple were cited for significant contributions of their time and talents toward creating a positive future for the Keokuk area. Over the past 35 years, they have served the community and many groups, both individually and together, and on many boards. They have been a supportive part of the lives of several children, welcoming them into their home through foster care. They have also supported the Keokuk School District, performed in many GRP productions, sang in community choirs, and supported performers in all genres of the arts.


Vickie (Grainger) Bruening retired as an administrative assistant with the Decorah Schools.

Andy Strandjord is assistant professor of chemistry at the University of Alaska–Anchorage.


Tom Engle of Georgetown, Texas, has retired from the US Navy and Delta Air Lines.


Nancy (Hermeier) Hershfield of Somerset, Wis., is vice president of philanthropy at PeopleForBikes.

Linda Munden is senior executive director of the Bridge Home in Ames, Iowa, a nonprofit devoted to bridging the gap between homelessness and housing by providing shelter and support and inspiring a pathway forward for individuals and families experiencing or on the verge of homelessness.

Julie (Meyer) Schulte of Brooklyn Park, Minn., is the senior tech project manager at Siemens.

Jillellyn Storlie of Spring Grove, Minn., is a consultant and owner of Jillellyn Consulting. She is also a founding member of the board of directors of the Giants of the Earth Heritage Center.


Eric Davidson of San Diego, Calif., is vice president of the Danaher Business System—Aldevron.

Ray Hansen is assistant vice president and trust officer at Merchants Bank in Rochester, Minn.


Gail Bolson-Magnuson '84
Gail Bolson-Magnuson '84

Gail Bolson-Magnuson and her downtown Decorah business, Agora Arts, was recently featured in the Driftless Journal. Agora has maintained an active presence in the downtown Decorah district for 30 years, introducing shoppers to the beauty of handcrafted art. It has been in its current location, in the Hotel Winneshiek building at 104 East Water Street, since 1999.


Denise (Boggs) Cook of Tomball, Texas, is a retired third-grade teacher.


Chris (Brewster) Radentz of Jupiter, Fla., is the operations and development manager at the Florida Wildflower Foundation.

Joe Sweet of Minneapolis earned an MS degree in statistics from Texas A&M University and is a portfolio manager for US Bank Home Mortgage.

Mary (Sparks) Thompson of Dunlap, Ill., is president of Unity Point Health.


Tim Cronin was named superintendent of the Decorah Community School District by the Decorah CSD Board of Education. He begins his duties in July 2022.

John Storsved '90
John Storsved '90

John Storsved was named dean of the College of Health and Human Services at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston.

Chris Terry is the owner and principal of BuildCore in Rochester, Minn.


Erik Ommen is executive vice president and chief compliance officer at Falcon International Bank in Laredo, Texas.

Sven Schulte of Berlin, Germany, is senior director of NTT Data Business Solutions.


Kim Capel of Plymouth, Minn., is vice president of technical services at Fabcon Precast. She was featured in the March 2022 issue of Women in Construction.

Xenia Sandstrom-McGuire of St. Paul, Minn., is a bass player, mother of two teenagers, nature lover, and president of the International Society of Hildegard von Bingen Studies.


Troy Musel of Minneapolis is a credit review manager at American National Bank.

Jon Trouten of Iowa City, Iowa, is a general assistance specialist at Johnson County Social Services.


Rob Kleinendorst of Brooklyn, N.Y., is the coordinator of dance at Anne Arundel Community College.

Kristina (Carrington) Larson of North Babylon, N.Y., works at Garvin Construction Products.

Lynne (Perry) Poulton '95
Lynne (Perry) Poulton '95

Lynne (Perry) Poulton is the owner of Wholly Organized in Akron, Ohio. She also released a game called Declutter Go! in 2021.

Clint Schnekloth started Queer Camp, the first church-based camp for LGBTQ youth in the South, in 2021. His congregation, Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Fayetteville, Ark., received the Partner of the Year Award from the National Association of Social Workers, Arkansas chapter.

Steve Smith of Decorah is executive director of computer information systems at Northeast Iowa Community College.


Tim Krick of Dover, N.H., is manager for congregational engagement for Lutheran World Relief.

Kendra Miller of Urbandale, Iowa, is the associate conference minister for the Iowa Conference of the United Church of Christ.


Dave Gunnlaugsson of Hudson, Wis., is development advisor at Feed My Starving Children.

Kristi Jenkins is content editor for the American Board of Radiology in Tucson, Ariz.

Pete Newburg is practice coordinator at North Star Resource Group in Minneapolis.

Karen (Blonsky) Robey is a private therapist at Counseling Associates in La Crosse, Wis.

Tiffany (Flitter) Vraa is senior operations manager at RiverSource Life Insurance Company in Minneapolis.

Erika Wachholz is a financial advisor at Quest Wealth Management in Spencer, Iowa.


Gayle (Dunkel) Gort of Castle Rock, Colo., is expert services director at ServiceNow. She is responsible for customer delivery in the West region of the United States.

Magnus Hellmark of Örebro, Sweden, is the head of product development at CAB Group AB.


Erin (Brooks) Croll is software engineer manager at Wells Fargo in Des Moines, Iowa.

Mackenzie (Routh) McNaughton is senior attorney at Dorsey & Whitney in Minneapolis.

Erika (Johnson) Tritle of Myrtle Beach, S.C., is assistant professor of religious studies at Coastal Carolina University.

Sara Yedlik of Vinton, Iowa, is a teacher in the Cedar Rapids School District. She is also running for the Iowa legislature in House District 84.


Katie (Brunner) Ellingson is a library assistant for the Appleton (Wis.) Public Library and the access services specialist at St. Norbert College.

Ben Keseley is the minister of music at St. George’s Episcopal Church in Arlington, Va.

Elizabeth (Kephart) Reisinger of Sartell, Minn., writes fiction under the pen name E.K. Singer. Her debut novel, Whiskey Shores, a 1920s/Prohibition historical romance set in rural Minnesota, recently won the Romance through the Ages contest, a contest for unpublished manuscripts from the Hearts through Romance Writers. She is online at


Tristan Cox is the founder and president of Wealth Span Capital Management, an independent registered advisory firm in Northfield, Minn.


Ann (Liebbe) Thompson earned an MS degree in nursing from Texas A&M University and is a family nurse practitioner at Generations Visiting Practitioners in San Antonio, Texas.


Katy Dane received the 2022 Music Educator of the Year Award from the Barbershop Harmony Society and the National Association for Music Education. Katy teaches music and directs the orchestra and choirs at Benold Middle School in Georgetown, Texas.

Lena Johnson of Kent, Wash., is a supervisor of social work at Landmark Health.

Joshua Shank is lab manager for the Public Interest Tech Lab at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Mass. He also teaches graduate courses in musicology, composition, and music theory for Eastern Washington University’s online master’s program for K–12 music educators.

Arvid von Taube of South Boston, Mass., is a partner at Rich May PC.


Hassan Asghar '05
Hassan Asghar '05

Hassan Asghar of Minneapolis is the chief information and security officer at Hinge Health. He was also named a 2021 40 Under 40 honoree by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.

Marianne Holmer is a family nurse practitioner at PrimeCare Health in Chicago.

Kyle Knutson is a staff attorney at the Office of the Chapter 13 Trustee in Milwaukee.

Lauren Mayfield is a branch office administrator at Edward Jones in Chandler, Ariz.

Katie and John McCormick-Deaton ’05 live in Maple Grove, Minn. Katie is a physician at Allina Health. John is a critical care surgeon and director of trauma in the University of Minnesota Physicians group.

Meghan Myron-Karels is a recruiter at the University Corporation of Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo.


Sarah (Olson) Cutcliffe of Flossmoor, Ill., is the director of special projects at the Hospital for Special Surgery.

Jennifer (Miller Meyer) Donovan of Lisbon, Iowa, earned an MD degree from the University of Iowa and is associate medical director at the Abbe Center for Community Mental Health.

Marte Pohlmann of Oregon, Wis., is an administrative assistant with Agrace Hospice.

Veronica (Alzalde) Wells is assistant dean for user services and programs at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, Calif.

Tim Yourison is athletic development officer at the University of Wisconsin–La Crosse Foundation.


Megan (Schaefer) Rothenberger is the coordinator for student success, health, and well-being at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

Sarah (Putnam) Windt of Charlotte, N.C., is engagement director at CliftonLarsonAllen.


Alyssa Cheadle Pearson is associate professor of psychology at Hope College in Holland, Mich.

Ryan Fordice of Milton, Fla., is a chaplain resident at Baptist Hospital.

Kylie (Toomer) Gougler of Cedar Falls, Iowa, published a book, Czech Arias for Soprano: An Anthology, the first in a series that will offer versions for baritone/bass, tenor, and mezzo.

Chandra (Skinner) Jennings of Ankeny, Iowa, is a prevention coordinator at the Iowa Department of Public Health.

Andrew Smeby is a project architect at Scott Edwards Architecture in Portland, Ore.


Ashley Johnson is associate integrated wealth advisor at Carlson Capital Management in Bloomington, Minn.

Erik Lehmann is chief operating officer at Vontas in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Phillip Livers of Minneapolis is a case manager at Sun Life Financial.

Chad Nelson is director of delivery at Venn Technology in Grapevine, Texas.

Matt Orth of Aurora, Ill., is a supply chain promotions planner at Martin Brower.

Audrey Voorhees of Washington, DC, is a principal design strategist at FINRA.

Jill (Sundby) Yordy is senior policy specialist for the National Conference of State Legislatures in Denver.


Carson Christen '10
Carson Christen '10

Carson Christen was the winner of the Lava Triathlon in Taiwan with a personal best record time of 1:57:36. He is living in Taichung, Taiwan, and is a professional endurance coach.

Tony Sellu of Apple Valley, Minn., is a senior data engineer at UnitedHealth Group.

Eric Sievers of Sarasota, Fla., is a senior ecologist at Wildlands Conservation.


Elizabeth Harrell is manager of new business development at Chemonics International in Washington, DC.

Ayesha Karim and Jake Kessler ’12 live in Austin, Texas. Ayesha is a global sourcing manager at Kendra Scott. Jake is a supervisor FP&A at Abbott.

Amanda Markowski earned an MSW degree from Augsburg College and is a psychotherapist at JLS Consulting Associates in St. Paul, Minn.

Rick Westermann of Urbandale, Iowa, is the chief marketing officer at Life Care Services.


Bailey Aaland of St. Paul, Minn., is marketing manager and digital producer at Shinebox.

Paige Armstrong-Hetterick of St. Paul, Minn., earned an MM degree from the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities. Paige is a music teacher at the Minneapolis Public Schools and artistic director and conductor for the Edina Chorale.

Dan Baldwin is pastor for Lutheran Campus Ministry at the University of Kansas in Lawrence.

Allyson Batis and Aaron Schmaltz live in Minneapolis. Allyson is the listing coordinator at Cynthia Froid Group, Keller Williams Realty Integrity Lakes. Aaron is the onboarding specialist at HubSpot.

Sara Bieber is the 6–12 vocal music and high school musical director at the Allamakee Community School District in Waukon, Iowa.

Brandon Boles of Estes Park, Colo., is a sportsbook ticket writer at the Lodge Casino.

Ariana Cervantes of Decorah is the store manager of Hy-Vee.

Matthew Christoffersen of Altoona, Iowa, is the assistant vice president—senior execution business consultant at Wells Fargo.

Katherine (Mehlhoff) Connor is a physical therapist at West Des Moines (Iowa) Physical Therapy.

Chelsi (Hammon) Jahn earned an MSW degree from Minnesota State University and is clinical director at Seasons Center for Behavioral Health in Spirit Lake, Iowa.

Danielle Koch is an ELA teacher at Hope Community Academy in St. Paul, Minn.

Jennifer (Winder) and Benjamin Kost live in Decorah. Jenn is a Spanish teacher and private tutor. Benj is a speech therapist at Winneshiek Medical Center.

Krista Canoy Krueger of Osage, Iowa, is a processing specialist with Principal Financial Group.

Emily Larson of Decorah is a self-employed artist and has made a graphic novel, Masquerade, that can be found on

Katelyn (Bottem) Marschall of Belleville, Wis., is a legal and protective services unit supervisor for the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

Anne (Kuttler) Martin of Davenport, Iowa, is a registered nurse with the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

Erik Mattson of Madison, Wis., is an operations supervisor at Tegria.

Micaela Mesch of Delhi, Iowa, is a behavior technician at Balance Autism.

Kayla Norman of Salt Lake City is a corporate social responsibility manager at Cambia Health Solutions.

Meghan Pedersen is a performance field manager with Delta Air Lines in Minneapolis.

Dan Ridenour was named sports science coordinator—assistant strength and conditioning coach for the Minnesota Vikings in Eagan, Minn.

Aaron Rosell is a buyer specialist and realtor at the Michael Kaslow Team—Keller Williams Realty Integrity Lakes in Minneapolis.
Aimee Schreiber is a youth services librarian at the Dakota County Farmington (Minn.) Library.

Miguel Secor is owner and strength and conditioning coach at Secor Strength in Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Dione (Miller) Stepanek of Onalaska, Wis., is director for evangelical mission and assistant to the bishop for the La Crosse Area Synod of the ELCA.

Allan Sweet is a pediatric critical care transport nurse at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

Spencer Ward is a law clerk at Roxanne Conlin and Associates in Des Moines, Iowa.

Lillian (Eldred) Wassell is a teacher at the Roseville (Minn.) Area Schools.


Kirsten Hash is a trademark attorney with Norton Rose Fulbright in Minneapolis.

Rachel Miessler is volunteer services manager at Saint Luke’s North Hospital in Kansas City, Mo.

Anthony Smith of Ames, Iowa, is the senior educational sales consultant at Perfection Learning.


Del Ciucci is director of strength and performance at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn.

Nathan Converse is an attorney at the Weinhardt Law Firm in Des Moines, Iowa.

Anthony Howard of St. Paul, Minn., is a scholar advisor at Wallin Education Partners.

Micayla Irmiter of St. Paul, Minn., earned an MA degree in special education from the University of St. Thomas.

Callie Mabry is communications and development lead at Holden Village in Chelan, Wash.

Rachel Stenhaug is cardiovascular portfolio–assistant controller at Medtronic in St. Paul, Minn.


Erik Anderson of St. Paul, Minn., earned an MD degree from the University of Iowa and is an anesthesia extern.

Caitlin (Almer) Barrett earned an MEd degree from the University of Northern Colorado and is a second-grade teacher for the Littleton (Colo.) Public Schools.

Nichole Clemens earned an MS degree in nursing from the University of Minnesota School of Nursing. She is a pediatric ICU registered nurse at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

Matthew Holcomb of San Diego, Calif., earned a PhD degree in chemistry from the Scripps Research Institute and is a postdoctoral researcher there.

Logan and Tyler (Carpenter) Kochendorfer live in Kansas City, Mo. Logan is assistant professor of psychology at Rockhurst University. Tyler is the team lead of Thermo Fisher Scientific.

Kat Marlow is a corporate recruiter at Estep and Company in Columbus, Ind.


Paige Johnson of Denver is a recovery project manager at the Colorado Resiliency Office.

Katie Kovacovich earned MSW and MEd degrees from Boston University and is the college and career center coordinator at AchieveMpls in Minneapolis.

Jacy (Mahoney) Looser of Buhwil, Switzerland, is the cofounder of Railwayhero, which focuses on traveling sustainably.

Nicole Lussier of Hopkins, Minn., is public engagement program manager at the American Academy of Neurology.


Catherine Karsell of Minneapolis is a mental health therapist at Hennepin Health.

Anna Madrigal is a performance improvement consultant at Nordic Consulting in Madison, Wis.

Matthew Peterson of Tucson, Ariz., earned an MS degree from Texas A&M University and is a senior research associate at Ventana Medical Systems.

Jacob Schwartz of Northfield, Minn., is a software engineer at CH Robinson.


Nathan Burwell is a data management support specialist with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency in St. Paul.

Annalise Johnson is morning news anchor at KIMT-TV in Rochester, Minn.

Shannon Meehan of St. Louis is a laboratory technician at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center.

DeeDee (Bradshaw) Meunier earned an MEd degree from the University of Wisconsin–La Crosse and is a general music teacher for the La Crosse School District.


Race Fisher of St. Paul, Minn., earned an MA degree in history from Illinois State University.

Paige Yontz of West Des Moines, Iowa, is a practice manager at the Iowa Clinic.


Logan Morrison is an exercise physiologist at Discover Strength in Minneapolis.

Trent Ostby is a realtor for Kelly Real Estate in Decorah.

Hallie Simon is an elementary music and band teacher for the Tri City United Public Schools in Montgomery, Minn.


Andrea Blocker of St. Paul, Minn., is a regional fundraising specialist at Minnesota Public Radio.

Kyle Clough is an accountant at BH Management Services in Des Moines, Iowa.

Hanna (Dodd) Ferguson is a copywriter at Upshot Agency in Chicago.

Taehjona Hodges of St. Paul, Minn., is a college access junior coach at College Possible–Minnesota.

Elayna Kiehne is a graduate teaching assistant at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion.

Daniel Opdahl is a science teacher in Pueblo (Colo.) School District 60.