Spring 2010 Class Notes

USD campus beauty.



CHARLES HANLEN (B.A.) was inducted into La Societe des Quarante Hommes et Huit Cheveux (The Society of 40 Men and Eight Horses), an honor organization of male and female U.S. military veterans. The term “40/8” originated during World War I, when the sides of French railroad cars were stenciled with those numerals, denoting that each boxcar carried 40 men and eight horses. The uncomfortable railroad cars transported American soldiers to the trenches at the front from 1917 until a few weeks before the Armistice on Nov. 11, 1918. Hanlen is a former National Alumni Board member.


VERN SCHOOLEY (J.D.) was elected to a second term as president of the Los Angeles Intellectual Property Inn of Court and is counselor of the Ball/Hunt Inn of Court. He also serves on the American Inn of Court President’s Council, is program co-chair of the Long Beach Bar Association and is in the process of organizing an Intellectual Property Law American Inn of Court in Seattle. Since graduation, Vern has specialized in patent and trademark litigation with the law firm Fulwider Patton. He lives in Long Beach with his wife, Trish, and daughter, Kelly.



IDA (DeGIORGIO) SCANLON (BSN) has been retired from her position as a school nurse in the Oceanside Unified School District for 12 years. She has been attending literature and Bible classes since 1986.


GARY GRAMLING (J.D.) was appointed to the city of San Diego Housing Commission by Mayor Jerry Sanders. Gary is president of Gramling Construction Co. and Desert Develop-ment Co., specializing in single-family homes, general contracting services, construction management and land development in Imperial County. He has served on the board of trustees for Meals on Wheels for more than 20 years and is a director of the San Diego Building Industry Association’s Home Builders Council.


RICHARD BERG (J.D.) is semi-retired and living in eastern Idaho near Grand Teton National Park. “I enjoy wonderful skiing in winter, hiking and biking in summer in a wonderful outdoor setting, and great neighbors and friends,” he writes. Prior to retiring, he was a managing partner of Cadas & Perry, a multi-national intellectual property law firm. Before joining Cadas, he was a patent attorney, with most of his time spent at Texas Instruments in Dallas. “Nice place to work, but Texas is Texas,” he says. “Big, flat and hot. I enjoy outdoor sports, and I prefer living near the Tetons to Texas any day of the week!”

CONNIE (ROZMUS) CAHILL (B.A.) received the 2009 Award of Excellence from the Greater San Diego Reading Association, a group of teaching professionals dedicated to improving reading skills and opportunities for elementary and high school students. Connie has been an elementary school teacher in the Bonsall Union School District since 1976.


STEVE COHN (J.D.) and his wife, Catherine Travers, have lived in Sacramento since 1979. Steve serves on the Sacramento City Council and is in-house counsel for the Sacramento Municipal Utility District. The couple has two children: Nicole, 26, a graduate of UCLA and of Hunter College in New York (master’s degree in social work); and Adam, 23, a student at Sacramento City College.

ABBY SILVERMAN (J.D.) opened a new practice to work exclusively on mediations and arbitrations, concentrating on employment and employment-related business disputes. Abby retired from Baker & McKenzie after 20 years as a partner. Abby offers her expertise to many nonprofit and community organizations, including serving on the employment law panel and the complex litigation panel of the American Arbitration Association, San Diego district attorney’s Women’s Advisory Council, the board of trustees for Scripps Health and the Episcopal Community Services Board. She is listed in the Best Lawyers in America and the Southern California Super Lawyers lists.



JEANNIE SCARVELIS CONSTANTINOU (B.A., M.A. ’92) completed her Ph.D. from Université Laval and is teaching at USD as a postdoctoral fellow in the Theology and Religious Studies Department. Her dissertation topic was “Andrew of Caesarea and the Apocalypse in the Ancient Church of the East.” Previously, she earned a J.D. from Pepperdine School of Law and practiced in Ventura County and San Diego. Jeannie and her husband then moved to the East Coast, where she earned master’s degrees in theology from both Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology and Harvard.


KIM (PANE) SANDERS (B.A.) and her husband, Bruce, have a 10-year-old son and a 1-year-old puppy.


MARGRET TIMPSON (BSN) recently celebrated 30 years in nursing, 25 of which have been in the emergency department at Scripps Encinitas. She is currently the lead R.N. in the department.

THE REV. CARMEN WARNER-ROBBINS (MSN) is the executive director and founder of Welcome Home/Prison Re-entry Ministries in Oceanside, Calif. She is also the issue editor and an author for the fall 2009 issue of “Journal of Family and Community Health” and president and publisher of the newly formed Restorative Press, which produces publications for the special concerns of women. Carmen received the Wheaton College/Billy Graham Institute national award for outstanding work in the area of prison reform and innovation.


THOMAS OERTEL (MSN) received his Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. He completed double majors in clinical practice and nursing education. Thomas is
a nurse practitioner and has been a nursing instructor at Grossmont College in El Cajon for more than
20 years. Tom, his wife, Susan (Reeves) ’86, and their two daughters live near Poway.


REBEKAH (ALBRECHT) CAREY (MSN) is director of nursing at Wisconsin Lutheran College. She reports that she was brought on board to develop a new bachelor’s program in nursing.

KENNETH WINANS (BBA) earned top honors at the 2009 Next Generation Indie Book Awards with “Investment Atlas” in the highly competitive finance category. Kenneth also was named a finalist in four other categories: best overall design, business, history and coffee table book. “Winning in 2009 is especially sweet, because of all the great finance books written during these tremulous times,” Ken says. His first book, “Preferreds,” was chosen as the top investment book in the 2007 U.S.A. Book News Best Book Awards.


JESSICA (PICCINI) CRABTREE (BBA) has been married to her husband, Tom, since 1995 and they have two daughters: Haley, 10, and Piper, 7. Jessica is a jewelry designer and business owner of www.anjedesigns.com. She also manages her husband’s plastic surgery practice. The family lives in Kailua, Hawaii, and they spend their free time paddle-boarding, horseback riding and traveling. They visit Telluride, Colo., frequently and hope to buy a second home there.



SALLY EVERSON-BATES (D.N.Sc.) reports that her daughter, Samantha, was married on June 13. Samantha is a bone marrow transplant nurse in Portland, Ore. Sally also writes that her parents just celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary.

CHRISTINE (POLLACK) LATHAM (D.N.Sc.) received the 2009 Best Practice in Research Award from the Association of California Nurse Leaders, a statewide group of nurse executives, academicians and practitioner leaders. The award, which is received by nomination and reviewed by the organization’s membership, was presented at the ACNL annual conference in Monterey, Calif.


ART LA FLAMME (B.A.) is in his third tour of Iraq.

LISA (CHEUNG) WANG (B.Acc.) and her husband are the proud parents of a baby girl, Jenna Caitlin, born on April 16, 2009. “She waited an extra day so that her mommy could finish her April 15 tax deadline,” Lisa says. Jenna joins big brothers Jaxon, 7; Jacob, 5; and Jared, 2. Lisa recently returned to work as the internal tax manager at Nara Bank.


PATRICIA CHIN (D.N.Sc.) retired from her position as the director of the School of Nursing at California State University, Los Angeles, in June 2008. Prior to retirement, she was awarded emeritus status by the university’s president.

JACQUELINE (KAHN) PARIS (B.A.) and her husband, Joel, proudly announce the birth of their daughter, Josephine Marie, on April 14, 2009. Josephine joins big sister Katarina, 2. The family lives in Bel Air, Calif., where Jacqueline is an at-home mom.


PATTY (O’CONNOR) LAURITZEN (B.A.) and her husband, Dean, welcomed their first child, Lilly Skye, on Dec. 24, 2007. After working in advertising for 14 years, Patty now spends her time as a writer and photographer. Her first solo gallery exhibit took place in August 2009. Dean is a professor at City College of San Francisco, where he teaches anatomy and physiology. Together, they are renovating their home in Moss Beach, Calif.

DONA WILLOUGHBY (MSN) co-created a “permaculturally based intentional community focused on living sustainably on Earth.” She grows many tropical fruits, taro and vegetables, and they have sheep, chicken, bees and fish. Dona also says she practices with many medicinal plants.


DEBRA FISCHER (MSN) received a Ph.D. in health psychology in 2005. She has been a family nurse practitioner for more than 10 years at a clinic for Native Americans. Debra has traveled to Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Mexico and Canada. She had a photo published in a calendar, and she planned to take a mission trip to Peru in September 2009.

ERIKA HARRINGTON (B.A., J.D. ’03) and her husband, Tucker, welcomed their second son, Connor Alan, on May 5, 2009.

MARY PARNOW (J.D.) was appointed a federal administrative law judge in San Jose in June 2009. She was an attorney for the Social Security Administration for 14 years. For the last eight years, she was with the Office of General Counsel in San Francisco, where she frequently represented the federal government before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco and Los Angeles, and also served as a special assistant United States attorney to the Department of Justice. Prior to that, she spent two years as the regional attorney for the Social Security Office of Determination and Review. Mary served her first four years with the Social Security Administration as a staff attorney for the Office of Hearings and Appeals in Orange, Calif., and San Jose, Calif. She was admitted to the California State Bar in 1994.


KELLY (KREISLE) BURKE (BBA) and her husband, Ashley, welcomed their first child, Ryan William, on May 22, 2009. The family lives in Orange County, Calif.

DAVIN HECKMAN (B.A.) published his first book in 2008: “A Small World: Smart Houses and the Dream of the Perfect Day” (Duke University Press). In January 2009, Davin and his wife, Carrie, welcomed their third son, Sergio Francis, joining brothers Jonah Vincent, 5, and Oscar Romero, 3. Davin teaches English and media studies at Siena Heights University in Adrian, Mich.

TAMI BARNHART REESE (BBA) and her husband, West, celebrated the birth of Cole Douglas on July 24. Cole joins big brother Jake, 5. The family lives in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., and they are working on a new family-owned construction company in San Diego. Tami recently became a LEED-accredited professional, a green-building designation.


ABIGAIL (QUINIO) KEENAN (B.A.) and her husband, Ron Lee Keenan, were married in February 2008, and they welcomed their son, Tucker Shane, on April 21, 2009. Abigail works for the U.S. federal government. Her husband is an Army paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne. The family lives in North Carolina.

DAVID SANCHEZ YESKETT (BBA) married Adriana Obregon in Mexico City on June 27, 2009. David reports that USD alumni from the classes of 1998, 1999 and 2000 attended the wedding.



GUILLE ESQUIVEL (B.A.) and co-author Mayrely Pérez published their first book, “Out of the Park,” about their countries’ national pastime. Esquivel is Mexican-American and Perez is Dominican. Their bilingual book looks at some Latino baseball players’ personal lives, including some of Major League Baseball’s biggest stars, up-and-coming stars and Cuban baseball players who have never played in the majors. “Out of the Park” is available at www.lulu.com and was expected to hit bookstores soon.

KATE (BERG) GALINDO (B.A.) and her husband, Cesar, celebrated the arrival of their first child, Diego David, on July 1, 2009. Kate teaches English as a second language at a K-8 public charter school in Denver, where she lives with Cesar, Diego, and her two stepchildren, Gaby and Leo.

ROBIN McKENZIE (Ph.D.) retired from the U.S. Navy after 30 years of active duty service. Her last position was commanding officer, Naval School of Health Sciences in San Diego. Robin and her husband now live in Orange Park, Fla., where she is an adjunct faculty as a medical-surgical clinical instructor with the University of North Florida and the Jacksonville University schools of nursing.

CHARLES SCHEIN (BBA) and his wife, Monica (Escobedo) ’00, moved to a new home in Visalia, Calif.

ANGELA (SESTI) POND (B.A.) and her husband, Joshua, celebrated the arrival of their third daughter, Caralena Ann, on Sept. 19, 2008. Caralena joins sisters Isabella Marie, 3, and Annalesa Jean, 2. All three sisters were born in September. Angela has been teaching first grade for the past eight years. “My husband and I enjoy spending time with the girls and look forward to summer vacation!” she says.


KRISTEN DENNIS (MBA, J.D. ’04) moved back to San Diego and accepted a job at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District of California. “Along with tremendous professional growth, my family has grown,” she writes. “I now have a second child.”

PAULA (CHAPMAN) ISHAM (B.A.) and her husband, Jeff, welcomed their first son, Eli Lewis, on Jan. 21, 2009. “Eli loves playing with all of his USD aunties!” she says.

RODD MILLER (BBA) and his wife, Mary (Wheeler) ’01, moved back to San Diego with their two future Toreros, Rylan, 3, and Madelyn, 1.


SAMUEL ADAMO (BBA) graduated from South Texas College of Law in Houston in 2006 and practices as a criminal defense attorney with Adamo & Adamo in Houston. The other Adamo is his father, Samuel says.

JAMES BECHTOLD (B.Acc.) was married on May 16, 2009, to Erica Diaz. He raced in the World Championship Ironman Triathlon on Oct. 15, 2008, with a finish time of 9:50:15. James works in real estate with his father. Erica earned her undergraduate degree from Long Beach State and her law degree from Chapman Law School. She passed the bar exam and is now a lawyer in Orange County.

YVETTE CANABA (B.A.) is in her third year at Temple University in the School of Podiatric Medicine.

JARED CEFALIA (BBA) and his wife, Kelly, were married on Oct. 10, 2004. Their first son, Jared Jr., was born on July 30, 2007, and their second, Joel, was born on Dec. 1, 2008. Jared started JJJ Builders (www.jjjbuilder.com) in 2003, which specializes in building custom homes.

SARA CHIOCCA (B.A.) has been a staff physical therapist at Star Physical Therapy since May 2008.

ERICA COSTANZO (B.Acc., BBA ’02) earned her CPA license recently. She is an audit manager at McGladrey & Pullen in San Diego.

SUSAN WERNER DeVOE (M.A.) has been an elementary and middle school counselor for the past six years. She is taking a year off to stay home with her first child.

KENDALL BROWN FULTON (MBA) and her husband, Michael, were married on May 16, 2009, in Niagara Falls, Ontario. They honeymooned in Montreal, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. Michael is a homicide detective. Kendall and Michael live in Maryland with their five children.

MARIE ANTOINETTE (REYES) HASKELL (MBA) and her husband welcomed a second son, John David, into the family on May 11, 2009.

JENNIFER LUNDY (M.A.) has worked with children, young adults and families in clinical therapy settings and has provided in-home services. Her background also includes human relations, diversity training, supporting victims of domestic violence and abuse, and working with adults who have chronic mental illness and addiction. Currently, Jennifer practices individual, couples and family therapy in her own practice, Positive Change Counseling Center, in La Mesa. She is also a volunteer facilitator for an anxiety support group and is a part-time research therapist treating post-traumatic stress disorder for combat veterans at the Veterans Hospital in La Jolla.

JASON MORRIS (B.A.) graduated from USC Dental School in May 2008. He is now an active-duty dentist at a naval base in San Diego.

KAY NORTON (B.A.) volunteers for Habitat for Humanity one day a week. “I love it!” she says.

DEBORAH STRAUHAL (B.A.) lives in Leucadia and reports that she is “thriving in business, life and love!”

J.P. SIMON WRIGHT (BBA) and his wife, Marina, welcomed their second daughter, Catherine Margaret, on April 16, 2009. Oldest daughter Charlotte turned 2 in July.


ROBERT BEAMER (B.A., M.A. ’08) lives on the “beautiful campus of Notre Dame,” where he is the assistant rector of Fisher Hall. He is studying liturgical and systematic theology at the university and teaches Spanish at a local high school.

OMAR BECERRA (B.Acc.) worked in the Assurance and Advisory Business Services Group at Ernst and Young after graduation. He is now a CPA in the corporate finance department at SAIC. “I continue to be involved with USD’s accounting department, Accounting Society, the USD School of Business Administration Alumni Association and the USD Alumni Association,” he says. Omar spends his spare time with friends and family and his cat, Charlie. He loves to eat out and has spent a lot of time traveling the world. “USD has been instrumental in achieving my dreams!” he says.

DAVID BRENNAN (LL.M.) teaches international law and is director of the Civil and Judicial Externship Program at Western State University in Fullerton, Calif. His article on Riegel v. Medtronic was published in June 2009.

KIMBERLY (BURNETT) BUCK (B.A.) and her husband, Christopher ’04, welcomed their first child, Lila Rose, on Feb. 1, 2009. “We love our future Torero!”

LISA (McMANUS) DANIELS (B.A.) is the marketing and membership director for the Palomar YMCA. She lives in Escondido with her husband, Bobby ’03, an alumnus of the School of Law.

TIFFANI (FITZSIMMONS) DeTAR (B.A.) and her husband, Gabe, were married on July 5, 2008, at Wente Vineyards in Livermore, Calif. They honeymooned in Vietnam and live in Vacaville, Calif. Tiffani teaches kindergarten and plans to study conservation efforts in Namibia, South Africa.

RYAN DE YOUNG (B.Acc., M.S. ’04) is the third generation to work at De Young Properties in Fresno, Calif., his family’s homebuilding business. As vice president of finance, Ryan helps continue the family’s 60-year tradition in the homebuilding industry. He works with his parents, Jerry and Paula, brother, Brandon, and sister, Ashley. In his spare time, Ryan is a member of the band Carpe Noctem. De Young Properties has long supported community organizations such as the Boys & Girls Club, Saint Agnes Medical Center and the Clovis Unified School District Foundation. De Young Properties recently built a home in less than one week for a local hero as part of the television show, “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (as seen in USD Magazine’s Summer 2009 issue).

ENRIQUE ELIAS (MBA) is promoting a new version of tequila (www.sotol.com) that is produced with a wild-harvested agave plant that grows exclusively in the desert of Chihuahua, Mexico. It was voted among the 25 favorite agave-based spirits in Paul Pacult’s “Spirit Journal” and won the highest award at the Agave Challenge.

MELISSA ESPINAL (B.A.) lives in Knoxville, Tenn., with her girlfriend, Jaye. They have shared custody of Jaye’s niece for two years. “Our career plans are undecided at this time, but travel is definitely in our future,” Melissa says. “I hope to find myself back in California sooner rather than later.”

TED FATES (J.D.) and Mandy Rushforth ’03 were married in July 2005. Their daughter, Ellie, was born on July 24, 2007, and their son, Andrew, was born on April 6, 2009. The family lives in La Jolla.

DENIS GRASSKA (B.A.) is the assistant editor of The Southern Cross, the newspaper of the Catholic Diocese of San Diego. He joined the paper in April 2005 as a staff writer.

MICHAELA HANEY (B.A.) graduated from medical school in May 2009 and was planning to start her dermatology residency at the University of New Mexico.

HILARY HEDEMARK (B.A.) and her husband, Jason Bedient, were married in July 2008. Hilary is an attorney with Steven Adair MacDonald & Associates, specializing in real estate and landlord/tenant law.

MEGAN HILFER (B.A.) is an account coordinator at Parsons Public Relations, a firm in Seattle that works exclusively with green and sustainable companies and organizations. She owns a condo in West Seattle and lives there with her boyfriend, dog and cat. “I have traveled internationally, including recent trips to Costa Rica and Nepal,” she says. “I also climbed Mount Olympus on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State in 2007.”

JEREMY HORN (B.A.) joined the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps in July 2009 as a first lieutenant. He expected to be promoted to captain in January 2010. His first assignment is in Japan.

WILLIAM KALENIUS (B.A.) finished his second year as a firefighter-paramedic with the Corvallis Fire Department in Oregon. “I continue to run off-road ultramarathons, row as a single and climb the Cascade Volcanoes,” he says.

SHELLEY MILLER (MSEL) is writing her first book, a memoir with the working title “Postcards from Home.” It is the story of her family trading homes with families in England, Ireland, Germany, France and Italy between April and August 2000. Shelley went on sabbatical from her job, her husband, Stan, worked via phone and Internet, they pulled their two kids, ages 12 and 8, out of school, and everyone kept journals during their adventure. “Our efforts resulted in an experience that changed my family’s life forever,” Shelley says. (See story on page 28.)

FABIENNE MUERI (BBA) moved to Texas after graduation, then Oklahoma, and she is now back in San Diego working for Petco. She ran her first marathon in May 2009, tries to travel to one new country per year, and is looking into some master’s programs to continue her education.

LAURA (WALKER) NIXON (B.A.) and her husband, Christopher, were married in August 2008. Christopher is a graduate of the University of Colorado. Laura and Christopher live and work in Denver.

JOHN NOWAKOWSKI (J.D.) made the news in Las Vegas for a case he is working on in which a Clark County, Nev., man has sued Usana Health Sciences, alleging the direct marketer operates a pyramid scheme. John represents the plaintiff, who wants the suit to be certified as a class-action representing all Nevada Usana distributors.

ERIKA OTOCKA (B.A.) was admitted to the Connecticut and New York state bars in 2008 and 2009. She practices for a family law firm in Stamford, Conn.

STEPHANI RICHARDS-WILSON (Ed.D.) was selected a fellow for the 14th annual Summer Institute on the Holocaust, sponsored by Northwestern University and the Holocaust Education Foundation. Stephani is the assistant dean of the Helen Way Klingler College of Arts and Sciences at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wis.

ELIZABETH RUNYEN (B.A.) and Colin Gilbert ’04 live in Southern California, where Elizabeth is an associate publisher and Colin is a freelance educator, writer and photographer.

STEPHANIE (SHAFFER) SANTIAGO (M.A.) and her husband, Billy, celebrated the birth of their daughter, Nora Eloise, on Nov. 10, 2008.

NICOLE SAUNDERS (B.A.) was a market research intern in 2008 at SAP in Palo Alto, Calif. She completed her MBA from Santa Clara University in June 2009. Her concentrations were in managing innovations and technology, and marketing management.

BETT SIMPSON (B.A.) married Spencer Lucas on March 28, 2009, at Holy Rosary Church in Tacoma, Wash. Bett is a sales manager at Sound Refining, a petroleum and logistics company in Tacoma. She is also president of the Young Professionals Network of Tacoma-Pierce County, fundraising director for the board of directors of Rebuilding Together South Sound, and a big sister through the Big Brothers Big Sisters program.

MICHAEL TABATA (BBA) returned to Portland, Ore., after graduating from USD to work as a commercial insurance broker. In the spring of 2006, he suffered a spinal cord injury in a snowboarding accident and became paraplegic. He returned to California to undergo therapy at Project Walk, a spinal cord injury recovery program in Carlsbad. “Much to my surprise, I ran into my former Torero football teammate, Damien Minna, who was also in recovery at Project Walk after becoming quadriplegic in a boating accident,” Michael says. He is now back in Portland, attending Lewis and Clark Law School and working as a legal intern at the Paul Krueger law firm. “I continue to make progress toward my recovery through the program of intense exercise-based therapy I learned at Project Walk,” he says.

VERONICA DAVIDSON TUCKER (M.A.) and her husband, Aaron, have two children, Abigayle Grace, 4, and Luke Geyer, 2, and they are raising them in Fort Worth, Texas. Veronica is a college adviser at All Saints’ Episcopal School, and Aaron works at XTO Energy.

KOREN UYEMURA (B.A.) has a 2-year-old son, Isaiah Ka’ohuakealohaiowaiolola Seichi Uyemura. Koren expects to complete her master’s degree in secondary education soon and plans to teach math.


JEANNELLE (IBARRA) BITTERLIN (B.A.) took two years after graduation to travel around the world, enjoying such exotic places as Morocco, Egypt and India. She then returned to school and in December 2008 received a master’s degree in counseling from National University. Jeannelle lives in La Jolla, is working toward licensure and is planning to pursue a doctorate degree.

JOHN CANDITO (MSSCM) is at Raytheon as a material program manager for a Navy weapons system called Rolling Airframe Missile, or RAM. It is part of a close-in weapons system that protects U.S. and allied naval vessels around the world. It can detect and destroy antiship missiles, surface vessels and helicopter attacks. “Besides work, I have taken time to coach all three of my daughters’ sports teams and enjoy family vacations and outings,” he says. “Go Toreros!”

ILIANA GUZMAN CASTRO (B.A.) and her husband, Arturo, were married on Nov. 22, 2008, at Founders Chapel. She graduated from California Western School of Law on April 27, 2009. Iliana and Arturo live in Los Angeles.

SUSANNE (DUNWELL) GOETT (B.A.) and her husband, Steve, were married on May 2, 2009, in Temecula, Calif. Susanne is a corporate recruiter for Booz Allen Hamilton in San Diego.

JENNY INZUNZA (B.A.) has been a government accounts administrator at SAIC in San Diego since 2004. “I love my job!” she says. “I enjoy traveling. I recently applied to the MBA program at SDSU. Wish me luck!”

MAJA (RUSEK) KONRAD (IMBA) and her husband, Marcel, have twin boys, born on Feb. 21, 2007. The family lives in Walnut Creek, Calif.

ABBY YOUNG KOSTRZEWA (B.A.) and her husband, Robert, were married on July 7, 2007. They moved to Montana for a business opportunity for Robert and an education opportunity for Abby, who will be pursuing a master’s degree in biological sciences at the University of Montana in Bozeman. “Hopefully, more good news will follow soon,” she writes.

MATTHEW KUHN (B.Acc.) lives in Hawaii, where he started a full-service development/construction company, specializing in restaurants and hospitality.

CMDR. JON-PAUL LaBRUZZO (MSGL) completed his tour at U.S. Central Command, where he served as a speechwriter for Gen. David Patraeus, writing for the commander on issues affecting Central Command strategy and on U.S. operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and throughout the command’s area of responsibility. Jon-Paul is returning to San Diego, where he will command an aviation unit at Naval Air Station North Island.

RYAN MANDELL (B.A.) and Meghan (Burke) ’05 have been married for three years and live with their two dogs in University Place, Wash. Ryan is in the collision repair industry and Meghan is pursuing a career in elementary education.

LISA SALDIN QUARTARARO (B.A.) married her husband, Jason, in July 2008, after dating for seven years. They were married at Rancho de las Flores in Somis, Calif., and they honeymooned in the Bahamas. Lisa and Jason bought a house in Moorpark, Calif. Jason teaches eighth-grade history, and Lisa teaches first grade.

JESSICA (LEWIS) RASMUSSEN (M.A.) and her husband, Eric, were married on Aug. 9, 2008. They live in Alabama, where Jessica is a therapist at an outpatient clinic.

JESSICA RATTO (B.A.) graduated from Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences with dual degrees: doctor of osteopathy and a master of business administration, with an emphasis in healthcare leadership. In July 2009, Jessica began a three-year pediatric residency program at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Mo.

VIRGINIA REYNOLDS (B.A.) graduated from the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine. She lives in Rhode Island and is in a small animal rotating internship at Ocean State Veterinary Specialists.

DAVID ROSALES (BBA) married Kendra Tarrant in Corona del Mar, Calif., on Dec. 20, 2008. David is a musician, and Kendra is a high school math teacher. They live in Huntington Beach, Calif.

KRISTEN (LUEBBERT) WICK (B.A.) was married to Joshua Wick on July 3, 2004. Kristen earned a master’s degree in secondary education at Texas A&M University and has been teaching high school physics and chemistry for four years. Joshua is stationed at Naval Training Center Great Lakes, and the family lives in the suburbs of Chicago.


BRANDON BOWE (B.A.) completed his second tour in Iraq as a company commander of 136 Marines. “Very successful deployment, and we operated in five different Iraqi provinces,” he reports. “Very rare for a single Marine unit to travel so much.” Brandon lives next to USD, is an active member in church and in the Men’s Military Ministry. He is about to specialize in antiterrorism and force protection studies and practices.

CHRISTINE (BURGER) PISTEK (B.A.) and her husband, Peter, welcomed their daughter, Milena Lucie, into the world on June 8, 2009.

KIRA QUINN-WORRALL (B.A.) moved back to Tucson, Ariz., where her family lives, and she began her career in social work with Child Protective Services. “While working for CPS, I started a home-based telecom business with ACN and have since been able to go full-time and work from home,” she says. “I look forward to a life filled with service to others and difference making.”

ERYN (McKINLEY) XAVIER (B.A.) married her husband, Gary, on July 19, 2008. Eryn graduated from the University of Nevada School of Medicine in May 2009 and began her family medicine residency in Sacramento in June 2009.


ELIZABETH THOMETZ (B.A.) graduated in May 2009 from University of North Carolina, Greensboro, with a master’s degree in athletic training. She is a certified athletic trainer working with the 1st Battalion, 13th Infantry Division, at Fort Jackson Army Base in South Carolina.


SERGIO CHINOS (B.A.) earned a master’s degree in education from Loyola Marymount University in May 2009. Sergio is a resource specialist teacher at Locke High School in Los Angeles.

MICHAEL GASPERSON (BBA) was a wide receiver for the Philadelphia Eagles for three years. He and his wife, Mandy (Leasure) ’07, were married in July 2006 and they live in Portland, Ore. Michael and Mandy welcomed Hudson Quinn on Feb. 17, 2008. Mandy taught middle school in New Jersey.

MERIDITH MILLER (B.A.) graduated from the University of San Francisco Law School in 2008 and passed the California bar exam on her first try. She is an attorney with the Morgan Lewis law firm in San Francisco, specializing in corporate litigation.

SAMANTHA PISANI (B.A.) married Matthew Petrucci ’07 on June 27, 2009, in Founders Chapel. After graduation, Samantha was a research assistant at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. The fall of 2009 marked her second year in the M.D./Ph.D. program at the University of Illinois, which allows her to attend medical school while also earning a Ph.D. in neuroscience. “I cannot express how beneficial my experience at USD has been in preparing me for this rigorous training program,” she says. “The small class sizes, intense labs, integrative curriculum and close faculty mentoring really challenged me to develop the skills necessary to become a successful scientist and physician.” Matthew is relocating to Champaign, Ill., to work as a mechanical engineer with an imaging company at the University of Illinois Research Park. “The Midwest is definitely different from California, but we keep sunny San Diego close at heart!” Samantha says.



LAURIE HAWKINS ’75 (B.S.) passed away on April 15, 2009, after a 10-month battle with appendiceal cancer. She was a chief appraiser with the County of Los Angeles. She loved her children, art and animals.

GERALD HERMSEN ’71 (B.A., ’73 M.Ed.) of Cardiff by the Sea passed away recently. Gerald was the father of USD alumni Timothy Hermsen, Michael Hermsen and Nora (Hermsen) Middleton, and the father-in-law of Deirdre (Kennedy) Hermsen, Timothy’s wife.

DAVID MAGRUDER ’96 (BBA) passed away recently.

DAVID SCHMELZLE ’70 (B.S.) passed away on July 27, 2009, at age 60, one day after suffering a heart attack. He lived in Temecula with his wife, Kathie, whom he had known since they were in kindergarten. David was a pediatrician with a practice in Fallbrook who was so beloved that patients were reluctant to leave his care when they reached adulthood. He was an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed hiking, fishing and camping, as well as capturing memorable photos of nature and of his family’s life.


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