Summer 2018 Class Notes

USD campus and sky


LOUIS CAPELLO (BBA) retired in Penn Valley, California, after a long career in corporate management and mortgage banking. He has two sons and one grandson.

VERN SCHOOLEY (JD) attended a formal dinner in the Great Hall of the U.S. Supreme Court with justices, judges and attorneys. Vern continues his intellectual property practice with Fulwider Patton.


TOM LaPUZZA (BA) reports he is revising for publication the history of the Navy laboratory where he has worked for 48 years.


STEPHEN RONALD CLOUD (JD) lives in Fresno, California, and runs his late parents’ two companies. Steve always remembers the great times he had with his fellow Class of 1969 law students, and he says hello and welcomes hearing from any classmates.

MARY JEAN (ZOLEZZI) GIOTTA (BA) and her husband moved back to San Diego County. “We are enjoying life in Carlsbad playing bridge and tennis,” she says.

LAWRENCE LACOMBE (BA) provided expert written testimony that was “cited favorably by the federal court in repelling a class action attack on land ownership,” he says.


MARIJANE POLLAK MOON (BA), ’74 (MA) and her husband retired from teaching in 2010 and they have been traveling to visit their grandsons and fellow alumni. “I volunteer at OMC and my husband is a docent on the USS Midway Museum,” she says.


BARRY LADENDORF (JD) retired from the California Attorney General’s Office and is serving his third term as president of Veterans for Peace, an NGO recognized by the United Nations that is committed to peace, nonviolence and educating the public on the true costs of war.


DEBBIE HALL (MEd), ’75 (MS) writes, “After a long and satisfying career as a psychologist, I returned to graduate school and completed an MFA in Writing (poetry) in January 2017.” Her first collection of poetry, What Light I Have, was released in December 2017.

RANDALL KLOTZ (BA) has a law practice in La Mesa, California, specializing in trusts and estates, real estate and corporate law. Randall and his wife, Laurel ’77, have been married for 40 years and they have two children: Nick, 25, and Jen, 24, both living and working in San Diego.


ED KLEIST (BAcc) was named regional managing director for BNY Mellon Wealth Management in Denver, Colorado. He is responsible for driving growth and expansion in Colorado markets.


TONY SALAY (BBA) works with a former classmate at GM Realty. He handles residential, investment and commercial real estate.

FLAVIA SORIA (BBA), ’05 (MEd) retired in July 2017 after 28 years with the San Diego Unified School District, the last 15 years as an elementary principal.


MARILOU ALCANTAR (BA) writes, “I am blessed to have come full circle in my life and career … to be working in the very department I earned my degree in … music! It’s so great to hear the beautiful sounds of music echoing down the halls!”

FATHER KRIS SORENSON (BA), ’81 (BA) was ordained in the Diocese of Fresno in 2008 and named a full pastor in 2014 as well as vicar forane (similar to a dean) of the high desert. In honor of the 50th anniversary of the Fresno diocese, Father Kris arranged a special high Mass at the Manzanar Japanese detention camp with the bishop in May 2017.

TERESA VAUGHN (BA) sold her historic home last summer and moved from Orange County, California, to a beach house in Baja California, just south of Ensenada. “Life is good!” she says.


ANDREW BANKS (JD) retired from his position as a judge of the Superior Court of California, Orange County, on May 2, 2017, after 20 years on the bench.

GREGG RELYEA (JD) published a children’s picture book about conflict resolution skills with co-author Joshua Weiss in April 2017. Gregg teaches negotiation at USD as an adjunct professor. His career includes 25 years as a professional, neutral mediator; adjunct instructor at several universities and a mediation trainer.

JIM VALENZUELA (BBA) has three grandchildren: Mackenzie Julianne Atkinson, Riley Makenna Atkinson and Nicholas John Valenzuela.


CAROLYN BOWEN (BBA) has handled print and digital sales for a leading telecommunications company for the past 20 years. “Also, I have been an advocate for the elderly in our community and have owned an assisted living facility for the past 10 years,” she says.


JEFF FREEMAN (BA) writes cybersecurity technical manuals and handles program management for a defense contractor at Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command.


E. SCOTT DOUGLAS (JD) celebrated his 20th year as a full-time mediator. He lives and surfs in Manhattan Beach, California, and still plays soccer with a competitive men’s league team.

JAMES HITCHCOCK (BBA) was named to the President’s Honor Roll at his firm, Raymond James and Associates in Newport Beach, California.


FRANK BUGELLI (BBA) writes that he is “working as a servant to my wife and four kids. Retired U.S. Navy.”

NANCY (CRUMP) CAMPMAN-CROFTS (BA) is the general manager for Goodsell Wilkins, a framing and drywall contractor in Orange County, California. In this position, Nancy handles risk management, human resources and project insurance.

JOSEPH LOZANO (BA) writes he is “always glad to see how my USD crew alumni are doing.”

JULIE ROBERTS-PANCRAZI (BA) and her husband, Tom, live in Yuma, Arizona. “We have three children and our youngest is now a freshman at USD,” she says.

MARY SWENSON (BA) reports that she is growing and expanding her leadership and counseling business. “Kids are in college; my, time flies … best to my colleagues,” she says.


CHERYL BEASLEY (BA) reports she is married to Ron Beasley, a former lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy. Their son, Matthew, graduated from USD in 2017 with a double major in finance and real estate.


CELESTE (KANKOWSKI) BLODGETT (BA), ’87 (MEd) is vice president of human resources at ESET and a finalist for HR Executive of the Year. She and her husband, Robert ’87, have four sons: Zachary, married to Haylee (Saoie), now expecting their first child; Garret, a senior at Gonzaga University; Matthew, a senior at St. Augustine High School in San Diego; and Mark, a sophomore at West Hills High School.

WILL CREAGAN (BBA) reports he is married to Laura Jackson Zack ’86. “Living the dream in Encinitas/North San Diego County,” Will says. “Five great kids between us, ages 16-25.”

MARJORIE DECK (BBA) is a USD parent, alumna and employee in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. “If anyone bleeds Torero blue and white, it’s me!” she says.

NORA MIDDLETON (BA) operates two upscale rental properties in Cardiff-by-the-Sea, California: Cardiff Ocean View Retreats and 180-Degree Ocean View.

PETE MURPHY (BBA) is a business development manager with the Surveys and Lasers Division of Robert Bosch North America.


BARBARA BEELER (BBA), ’06 (MAFM) has been with the Department of Defense for 30 years. In July 2017, four generations of Barbara’s family celebrated her mom’s 90th birthday.

RICHARD FIELDS (LLM) received the 2013 Alba Witkin Humanitarian Award from the California Judges
Association. Richard is a justice with the California Court of Appeal.

ROB LESTER (BBA) recently moved back to Southern California after spending 15 years in Dallas. He serves as chief financial officer for Kaiser Permanente’s South Bay Medical Group.

NANCY WHEELER (BA) reports that her daughter is a student at USD.


TOÑIS MANRÍQUEZ (BBA) recently celebrated 24 years as USD’s assistant director of university centers operations. “Proud mother of Lupe Vélez Manríquez, first-year student at USD, Class of 2021.”

NOREEN O’NEILL (BA) is a mother of four. Her eldest, Ciara, is a student at USD. “I know she will love it here as much as I did!” she says. Noreen sells cash automation equipment to banks and credit unions all over Southern California and lives in Thousand Oaks, California. “Life is good!”

JOHN ROTHENSTEIN (BBA) owns Phocus Health Benefits, a full-service employee benefits insurance agency in Arizona, California and Washington.

JEFFERY TIPTON (BA) owns Tipton Group Real Estate and has sold residential real estate for 18 years.


PATRICE CARINGTON (BBA) is opening an insomnia clinic in Escondido, California.

MARK DUNDEE (MAIR), ’89 (LLM) was appointed by President Trump to serve as senior policy adviser to the Department of Labor. Mark is a senior consultant at Willis Towers Watson, a global advisory and consulting firm. Mark has twice received the Medal of Merit from the Secretary of the Treasury.

REBECCA SEYMOUR (BA), ’90 (MEd) teaches fourth grade at an independent Catholic school in Pasadena, California. “Married to Michael Seymour ’88 for 25 years and our daughter will be a graduating Torero in 2018,” she says. “So proud!”


ANNE DOWNING (BA) has been busy with her recruiting business. She works with start-up and tech companies in several U.S. cities. She writes, “In addition to running my business, I am having fun with my three children who are all in high school this year!”

ANGIE TODD (BA) is a real estate agent working with her husband, Tim ’90, and son, Spencer, in their own brokerage through Select Homes Real Estate. “We are a full-service brokerage covering San Diego County,” she says. “My daughter is currently a student at USD, graduating 2020.”


SUSAN ROSE VERNER (JD) became a real estate agent with Long and Foster in Maryland and Washington, D.C., after retiring from litigation practice at Seltzer Caplan McMahon and Vitek. She attained gold team status in her first two calendar years and received the service award for 2016 for her efforts in organizing community service activities.

GEOFFREY YOUNG (BA) is transitioning from the tech industry to the craft beer industry. He also writes and edits baseball articles and books. He and his wife, Sandra, have been married for 21 years. “We live very near campus with our pug, Charlie, and we are USD volleyball season ticket holders.”


KERI JAY (BA) writes, “So very excited and proud as my daughter is a freshman at USD this year! It was such an honor to attend Olé Weekend (family orientation) both as a parent and an alum. Thank you, USD! Take good care of my girl.”

ETHAN MAXON (BA) is with Omni AI and he writes, “Excited to be a part of a global leader in artificial intelligence protecting lives and property.”

ARCHIE MEDRANO (BA) teaches at San Diego Mesa College.

JASON ROMERO (BBA) is the only blind person to have run across America, and he has published Running Into the Dark, an account of his 3,063-mile run from Los Angeles to New York in 59.5 days, the seventh-fastest transcontinental foot crossing. Also a U.S. Paralympian, Jason was fourth in the world at the 2015 Paralympic World Marathon Championships and holds 13 world records in ultra-running for the blind and visually impaired. He is the subject of a full-length documentary, Running Vision, and was featured in the Fall 2016 issue of USD Magazine.

KRISTIN RUDE (BA) is a teacher mentor with Alliant University as well as an adjunct instructor in the education department.

JOHN SMITH-COPPES (BA) defended his doctoral dissertation and completed his his EdD with Benedictine University in the fall of 2017.


BRIAN BALCONI (JD) is president of The Camp Transformation Center, a fitness franchise. He returned to California in 2015 as president of Retail Food Group USA after 10 years in Michigan as general counsel of Little Caesar’s Pizza and six years in Massachusetts as counsel to Dunkin’ Brands.

SHARON POLLACK (BA) is manager of business development at “We are a company that is disrupting the traditional corporate relocation model,” she says. “We provide each transferee an on-the-ground host in the city they are relocating to, diminishing the intensity of stress in a move.”

GARRETT TRIPP (BBA) is a partner at Braddock Financial LLC in Denver, where he manages the Multi-Strategy Income Fund, after a decade as a portfolio manager of private funds. His wife, Robyn, and two daughters are doing well, he says. “Ellery is an International Baccalaureate student and varsity soccer player, and Eden is a middle-school student and club lacrosse player.”


MATTHEW TAYLOR (BA) reports that he has been working for the Catholic Diocese of Phoenix for two decades. “I have coached football and worked in strength training for the past 23 years.”


ANGELE JESTER (BA) and her husband, Chris ’94, returned from another year around the world. “This time we took both of our children with us and homeschooled them for 13½ months. We visited five continents and fit in a little sailing along the way. We’ve been home a year now and continue to run SailTime, our fractional lease sailing business.”

KRISTEN KOVAC (MEd) is a transitional kindergarten teacher in the Santa Clara Unified School District. Her daughter, Emma, is a freshman at California State University, Chico, and her son, Tripp, is a senior at Saratoga High School. The family lives in Los Gatos, California.

APRIL STEINGREBE (BA) reports, “Scott and I are raising three beautiful children and working in the downtown San Diego real estate industry.”


JASON EBERL (BA) has been appointed professor of health care ethics in the Albert Gnaegi Center for Health Care Ethics at Saint Louis University. He recently published two books: Contemporary Controversies in Catholic Bioethics and The Philosophy of Christopher Nolan.

VAL HILL (BS) is a film producer and financier of major studio films. He is CEO of his company, 16:14 Entertainment Inc. Some of his most recent films include Blade Runner 2049, starring Harrison Ford and Ryan Gosling, and 12 Strong, starring Chris Hemsworth.


DANIELLE ALEXANDER (BA), ’00 (MBA) owns Alexander Valley Lodge in California’s wine country. She has four children, ages 12, 11, 6 and 8 months.

KIMBERLY (HAASE) ARCADO (BA/BA) reports that she married David Arcado Jr. on Sept. 27, 2017, on Coronado Beach in San Diego.

AARON BLUMENKRANZ (BBA) writes, “Loving coaching my 8-year-old daughter’s basketball team!”

JENNIFER (BAILEY) BOWHEY (BA) is the sales and marketing coordinator for Crista Senior Living. “Lucky to be a part of a thriving organization that’s across the street from my daughter’s school!”

JENNIFER CAREY (BA) and Anna Chimowicz run a nonprofit called Fun 4 Good. Their flagship fundraiser is a breast cancer bike ride in Orange and San Diego counties.

STEPHANIE (MASCOTT) MANSOLINO (BBA) lives in San Diego with her husband of eight years and their two children: Colin, 6, and Anna Maureen, 3. Stephanie is the vice president of marketing at ScaleMatrix, a high-density data center in San Diego She recently hosted the USD program of GenCyber Academy high schoolers for a tour of the facility.

TODD PLUTCHOK (BBA) has two daughters: Alyssa, 3, and Tatianna, 1. He is a sports chiropractor with The League Sports Rehab and also serves as a sports medicine chiropractic consultant for the USD athletic


MARY GRACE ALMANDREZ (BA) was promoted to associate vice president for campus life and dean of students at Brown University.

ROHANEE CASILLAN (BA), ’02 (JD) is a deputy public defender specializing in working with mentally ill and developmentally disabled clients.

SANDY GUIDO GARCIA (BA) completed the paralegal program at USD in 1999 and worked at Cooley LLP for five years as a business litigation paralegal. She attended Trinity Law School from 2004 to 2007 and worked as a contracts paralegal for Sony Pictures Entertainment. Sandy now practices law as a contracts attorney for Becton Dickinson in San Diego.

MARLA HEALY (BSN) is a registered nurse at Sharp Memorial Hospital.

ABIGAIL QUINIO KEENAN (BA) lives in Orange County, California, with her kids, Tucker and Trever, and her pug, Patcher. She is a senior paralegal for Providence St. Joseph Health.

IRENE MARIE PATTON (BA) performed both solo and with instrumental groups when she was at USD, and she continues to sing with Professor Angela Yeung’s Greater San Diego Music Coterie.

JOHN PRO (BA) is a deputy district attorney in the gang prosecution unit with the San Diego District Attorney’s Office. He and his wife, Meredith, have two kids: Gabriella, 11, and Lorenzo, 6.

DAVID SANCHEZ (BBA) started his own agency in San Diego focusing on Hispanic digital and video production.


TRAMY “EVELYN” HUYNH (BA) and her husband, Joe Levert, have been settling into their new house. “Our 3-year-old son, Vui, is doing well in his first semester of preschool.”

MONICA PHELPS KLUGE (BA), ’07 (MS) was in Italy during the summer of 2017 with her husband and his family to enjoy a few days in the area of Lago Maggiore. At night, they saw meteor showers. “It was spectacular!”


RICHARD FREDRICK (BA) owns and operates “San Diego’s only ecoboutique”; find the website at

DARA GREANEY (BBA) is the founder and CEO of Acavati, a holding company for brands like, TableTop Chefs and RuggedGrade. He is the former founder and CEO of

CELIA (LOPEZ) LUCIO (BA), ’04 (MA) writes, “After a whirlwind year-plus in the Bay Area, we’ve relocated so I can return to working with military families in the Central Coast. The move brings us closer to home for my parents to enjoy their first grandchild, born in February 2017.”

PATRICIA MAKOKIS (EdD) moved to the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Previously, she worked in First Nation adult education for many years.


BRIANNA (BARR) GANSON (BA) has owned her own dental practice, Happy Teeth Dentistry, for almost three years. Brianna and her husband have a 5-year-old son, Knox, and a 3-year-old daughter, Brinkley.

DAVID LUTTBEG (JD) reports that he is a professional poker player.


HEATHER (MANLY) DOOLEY (BA), ’05 (MEd) and her husband, Kevin ’93, welcomed a daughter, Siana, in September 2017. “We can’t wait to share her with our USD family!” 


BASIL CONSIDINE (BA) was named to Musical America’s Top 30 Professionals: Movers and Shakers list. Other accomplishments include two national and international performance tours, directing the best-selling shows of the Tampa International Fringe Festival and the Minnesota Fringe Festival, being named a semifinalist for The American Prize in Theatre and directing an all-female production of Amahl and the Night Visitors. Basil also was named a visiting professor at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga for 2018.

ADRIAN DOWNING-ESPINAL (BA) reports that she left Veterans Village of San Diego after four years as a case manager in order to care for her wife’s grandmother part time. “With the rest of my time, I will be growing some community-based projects, including The Brown Building, a community center in City Heights.”

CANDACE ECKERT (MSGL) was selected as the diversity adviser to the chief of naval operations. This role is in addition to her current duties leading development and implementation of the U.S. Navy’s global inclusion and diversity strategy.

ROB FAW (MSGL) published The Adam Connection, based on extensive research using the Bible, Irish Chronicles and Annals of the World, a 17th century book by James Ussher, vice chancellor of Trinity College at Dublin University and Protestant archbishop of Ireland.

JENNI (EAGAN) MASSMAN (BBA) reports that she and her husband, Brody, welcomed Austin, their first child, on July 27, 2017.

TUI MUNDAY (BA) sells commercial real estate in Miami.


RYAN ARIANO (BBA) lives near Jackson Hole, Wyoming, with his wife, Rebecca, and son, Jackson. He is a travel consultant for production companies and bands. “Indulging a debilitating addiction to outdoor sports,” he adds.

CARLY KRUSE (BA) graduated from Vermont Law School in 2008 and then worked as a deputy district attorney and as an associate in a small general-practice law firm. She recently joined Curry Community Health as corporate counsel.

LUKE VANDERWAGEN (BA) is enjoying life “with my wonderful wife, Cynthia, cherishing my role as dad to Simon and Dottie, and building a meaningful body of work as an attorney for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.”


REBECCA DURAN-OJEDA (BSN) is a full-time nurse practitioner/nurse midwife. She also teaches nurse practitioner students in a clinical setting.

SYLVIE (TOGNO) HUTTON (BBA) writes, “Staying home with three babies.”

JENNA YEZARSKI-UNIS (BA) is lead teacher administrator at an independent-study charter school for underserved high school students in San Diego. She has two kids, ages 4 and 1, and she coaches health and fitness as a hobby.


BRIGID AVERY (MA) has taken on a new role as internship director at Aquinas College. “I love working more directly with the students!” she says.

JOSHUA BRISCO (BA), ’07 (BA) is senior manager, retail search operations, at CPC Strategy, one of San Diego’s fastest-growing companies and an active employer of Torero alumni.

ERIN FRASER (JD) joined Tanenbaum Keale LLP in its new Seattle office. She defends corporate clients in complex product liability actions. Erin began her career practicing securities litigation at a firm in California, where she represented shareholder plaintiffs in complex securities actions.

JAMES GARDNER (BA) ended his 11-year career in the Marine Corps and the Navy. He is now in San Diego pursuing a business career and plans to attend the Harvard Business School Program for Leadership Development.

MONICA JOHNSON (BA) is a budget analyst in the Economic Development Unit at the New York City Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget. After graduating from USD, Monica served as an English teacher in the Peace Corps in Romania from 2008 to 2011. She graduated in May 2017 from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs with an MPA in Development Practice. She also received the Harriman Institute Certificate in Russian, Eurasian and Eastern European Studies.


BRANDON DE YOUNG (BBA), ’08 (MSRE) is an executive vice president for De Young Properties and he recently unveiled the EnVision community in Loma Vista, California. “This new home development is an entire community of 36 grid-connected zero-energy homes, each designed to produce as much clean energy as they consume in a year,” he says.

COLIN DOWD (BA), ’12 (MBA) is “working in finance and enjoying life as a new dad,” he says.

MELANIE (MINO) HEAP (BA) and her husband, Andrew, welcomed their first child, Harris Robert, in March 2017.

MARK IGNACIO (BA) established his own law practice in La Mesa, California, focusing on matters of estate planning, trust administration, probate and real estate law.

ROBERT JONES (BS/BA) has been employed for 10 years with Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson, Arizona. He recently completed a master’s degree in Christian apologetics from Luther Rice College and Seminary.

MICHAEL MAHEU (BAcc) is a forensic accountant with Grant Thornton in Chicago.

BENJAMIN MALLER (BBA) moved to Hermosa Beach, California, and started a new job as an account strategist with Wpromote.

ANTHONY MORALES-TORRES (MA) is the primary K-5 counselor at Keiller Leadership Academy. “I am excited to be working with our awesome staff each year. My wife, Julissa, and I love our life here in San Diego.”

RONZA RAFO (BA) writes, “I went to law school, got married, passed the bar, and had a baby girl, Francesca Marie, who is now 4 and a future Torero. I manage my own family law practice in San Diego.”

LYNN ROMBI (BA) is a grandmother of two and she completed her education in 2010 with a master’s degree in theology from the University of San Francisco. She worked as director of youth ministry at the Carmel Mission Basilica for six years and is now the sole proprietor of Your Companion Angel, which offers companion care for the elderly on the Monterey peninsula. Lynn also is a certified spiritual director.

ALEXANDRA WILLIAMS (BA) achieved her goal of visiting 30 countries before her 30th birthday in 2015. She and her husband embarked on their next adventure when they welcomed their first child in March 2017.

BRIANA WISCHNACK (BA) and her husband welcomed their first child, Alex Anne, on March 23, 2017. “I am back at work as a nurse practitioner in the Laser and Cosmetic Dermatology Clinic at Scripps Clinic Carmel Valley,” she says.


JUSTINE ANDREU DARLING (BA), ’11 (MA) is the director of restorative justice practices at the National Conflict Resolution Center.

TAMMY DePETRO (MS) is a commodity manager in the aerospace sector in Phoenix, Arizona. “A lot of business travel and direct bottom-line impact.”

BRIAN EVAVOLD (BA) is still on active duty and stationed at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency just outside of Washington, D.C. With his planned retirement date of June 2018, he will complete a 25-year naval career. “I thank the facility and NROTC staff for all the support in getting this old sailor through the program and graduated in 2008. The best decision I ever made was to be a student at USD.”

NATALIE FINNERAN (BA) is a wife, stay-at-home mom of three little girls and a consultant for Rodan+Fields.

ANGELA (DOMINGUEZ) GONZALES (JD) was promoted to partner at Rimon P.C., where she practices corporate and real estate law with a focus on cross-border transactions.

REBECCA HAMES (MA) is the director of external affairs for the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University of California, San Diego. She works with students, alumni, industry and donors on departmental programs and initiatives.

JENNIFER JONES (MA), ’15 (PhD) is an assistant professor at the University of Florida, where she teaches nonprofit management, leadership and human resources.

KYLE MANNING (BAcc), ’16 (MS) is working with the Iraqi Navy on supply chain and logistics strategies.

COLLEEN STEBBENS (BBA) is taking a year off work to get her MBA from the University of Oxford.

ALANNA STREI (BA) was named 2016 Rookie of the Year by the San Diego Association of Realtors. She has also been selected for promotion to lieutenant commander in the United States Navy Reserves.

JUSTIN WEBSTER (BA) is an assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.


JESSIE BAXTER (JD) is a senior associate in the mergers and acquisitions group at White & Case LLP.

CHASE BREVOORT (BBA) works in medical device sales, specializing in robotic surgery.

ERIK CARTER (JD) is a senior financial planner at Financial Finesse.

KRISTI DOTSETH (BAcc), ’09 (MAcc) recently returned to the U.S. after spending more than three years on an international assignment with KPMG in Munich, Germany. She is now in her eighth year working for the firm as an audit senior manager in the San Francisco office.

ANDREW FLIOR (JD) was elected to counsel at Snell and Wilmer. Andrew was a summer associate with Snell and Wilmer in 2008 and after interning at the San Diego District Attorney’s Office, he joined the firm’s Orange County intellectual property practice group. He also has litigation experience in patent and trademark matters at the U.S. District Court level and in patent matters before the International Trade Commission.

KAILA MANGRUM (BA), ’12 (MA) writes, “I will forever and always bleed blue! Go Toreros.”


SHELLEY BARAJAS-LEYVA (MA) writes, “I transitioned from directing the USD TRiO McNair Scholars Program to directing the USD TRiO Upward Bound Program!”

JOHN CARROLL (BBA) reports that he is searching for a job.

EVAN FALIVENE (MSRE) is the project manager for Holland Partner Group in Denver.

JUSTIN HARKNESS (BBA) is a sales executive for YipitData, a start-up alternative data research firm in New York City, and attends Columbia Business School.

PETER HEINE (BBA) is in a full-time MBA program at the University of Texas. “Realizing that I wanted to make a career transition into management consulting, I found the best way to do this was attend a top-20 MBA program.”

KAITLYN JOHNSON (BA) works for Medtronic and represents its respiratory and patient monitoring portfolio. She sells software and monitoring solutions to improve patient care at San Diego and Southern California hospitals.

SARINA MOLINA (EdD) is an associate professor in USD’s School of Leadership and Education Sciences.

RUTH SOBERANES (BA) writes, “New job! Director of trade and investment at the Greater Phoenix Economic Council.”

ABIGAIL STEPHENSON (JD) was one of two USD Law School alumni recognized with the 2017 Rising Star Recent Alumni Award. She is a partner at Blanchard, Krasner & French.


BRYCE ABRAHAM (BS/BA) is a mechanical design engineer at Alcon Laboratories in Orange County, California.

HOLLY AYALA (BA) moved to Fort Collins, Colorado, from San Diego to follow career opportunities.

FRANCIS LANG (MA) is in his sixth year as the head of middle school at Francis Parker School. His son is a junior at USD, and his daughter is a senior at Francis Parker School. His wife, Heather, is the chef/manager of the Student Life Pavilion at USD.

NICOLE McCOY (BAcc) returned to San Diego in 2016 and reports that she married Michael Walker ’11 on Sept. 22, 2017. They met while attending USD.

NICHOLAS MYRICK (BBA) writes, “I took my business degree and became a union electrician.”

CHELSEA ROBINSON (BBA) reports that she plans to move to Dallas from San Francisco.

EMILY RUSSAK (BBA) says that she and fellow alumnus Logan Gelbrich are “leading from the front in the world of strength and conditioning at Deuce Gym in Venice Beach, California!”

SARA VANDERHORST (BA) teaches and coaches varsity basketball at Pacific Ridge School in Carlsbad, California.


ELOISA AMEZUCUA (BA) has received several writing fellowships and scholarships, including from The MacDowell Colony, the Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference and the New York State Summer Writers Institute. Her debut collection of poetry, From the Inside Quietly, is the inaugural winner of the Shelterbelt Poetry Prize, forthcoming from Shelterbelt Press.

STEPHANIE (CAMPOS) BROWNE (MA) returned to the U.S. after a four-year tour in Okinawa, Japan.

LUCAS BUENO (BA) is studying to be a public defender and prisoners’ rights attorney at UCLA’s School of Law. During the summer of 2018, he plans to be representing clients in felony trials in Anchorage, Alaska.

TREVOR CARLSEN (BA) started a new position as manager of external affairs for the Washington, D.C., office of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.

ALEX CLANCY (BA) is a pediatric emergency medicine physician’s assistant in Dallas.

PRESTON FAGGELLA (BBA), ’15 (MS) has worked at Northrop Grumman on the F-35 and F/A-18 program since earning his BBA.

MADELYN (BLAKE) HERSMAN (BA/BA) reports, “Charlie and I got married this summer! We met at USD my freshman year (his sophomore). I was co-chair of College Republicans and he was president of Young Democrats. We reached across the aisle and then walked down our own aisle seven years later!”

STEVEN MENDUKE (BA) is an administrator at Math and Science College Preparatory, a small charter school in Los Angeles. “I have worked with students and their families to help prepare students for college and have even taken some students on college trips (to USD too, of course).”

MARIA SILVA (BA) served as an AmeriCorps member at Bayside Community Center in San Diego’s Linda Vista community after graduating. She is now director of neighborhood and community engaged partnerships with USD’s Mulvaney Center for Community, Awareness and Social Action, and she is a second-year student in the Master’s in Migration Studies program through the University of San Francisco and Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City, Mexico.

GRANT SIMPSON (BA) is a dentist working in the Bankers Hill neighborhood in San Diego.

SAMANTHA (ESPINDOLA) SOLIS (BA) completed her master’s in counseling psychology with a concentration in sports psychology from Boston University. She reports that she got married to an Air Force pilot. “We have settled down in Washington state and I am now working as a child and family therapist just south of Seattle.”

KATHERINE TREACY (BA) left her corporate job to launch Bold+Nimble, her own experiential marketing and events agency.

TRAVIS WEGER (BA) received official selection by the GI Film Festival for a documentary titled Honor Flight: The Ride of a Lifetime. He received the Award of Merit by the American Public Power Association for Rescuing Needles, a short documentary about the city of Needles, California, and how its economy was rescued by affordable power.

ERIN (SCHNEIDER) ZIMMERMAN (BA) is a social media strategist, the owner and chief executive officer of Elephant Social and a “TV insider” on Better KC, a television show in Kansas City, Missouri.


MAR BACTOL (BBA) earned a master’s degree in sports administration and leadership, and plans to pursue a career in collegiate athletics.

JESSICA BUCKLEY (BS/BA) moved to the Detroit area to work on tunnel-boring machines and other tunneling equipment as a mechanical engineer with Jay Dee Contractors.

DUGGAN CLEM (BBA) is pursuing his master’s degree in sports industry management from Georgetown University. He also works for Monumental Sports and Entertainment, in the finance department, specializing in global partnerships.

JOHN CUTTER (BA) writes, “Sold a startup that I helped build to a publicly traded company, got married to Christine Nolan ’12 at USD in Founders Chapel, and now I’m a product manager at IBM Watson, working on augmented reality and virtual reality.”

RYAN DOYLE (JD) is a senior tax consultant at Deloitte in San Diego.

JANESSA (RASMUSSEN) IWAN (BBA) reports that she and Benjamin Iwan were married in the summer of 2017. Ben is finishing up his degree in mechanical engineering at USD after serving in the U.S. Navy. “I’ve recently moved back to San Diego so I’m eager to run into old friends around town and at alumni events!” Janessa adds.

AVERY JOHNSON (BA) is a writer and fitness professional in San Francisco. “While I daylight as a copywriter at a boutique marketing agency, I spend my early mornings leading high-energy spin classes and my nights contributing wellness articles to PopSugar and other sites,” she reports.

BRITTANY (SWICORD) KRUEGER (BA) is a law student at the University of Utah.

IAN MAHANEY (BS/BA) is a manufacturing engineer for a medical component company.

KRISTINA MEDINA (MAPJ) changed careers, after dedicating 12 years to public education, in order to more specifically support youth and peacebuilding. She is now the program officer for WorldLink at USD’s Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice.

GRACE MICHEL (MAPJ) returned to San Diego after working for a year in Myanmar on peace education with Thabyay Education Foundation. She is an independent consultant on projects for several NGOs in Myanmar.

BYRON RIEMHOFER (BS/BA) develops medical devices that transform spine surgery at NuVasive, Inc.

ROMYN SABATCHI (BBA) graduated from the University of San Francisco with a master’s degree in higher education and student affairs.

KATY (JOHNSON) SANDBERG (BA) reports that she and John Sandberg were married on Aug. 5, 2017, at Founders Chapel. They met at USD in 2011 and Katy says they celebrated their marriage with friends and family at their favorite spot on campus.


ANDREW ANABI (BA) worked in the New York office of Morrison & Foerster during the summer of 2017. He is in his last year of law school at Columbia University.

KATRINA BESS (BA), ’16 (MSN) is a registered nurse in the neonatal intensive care unit at Children’s Hospital Orange County.

NADIA BEYDOUN (BBA) is pursuing a graduate degree in bioengineering at San Diego State University’s College of Engineering.

DYLAN BONFIGLI (BA) is a law clerk for the United States District Court, District of Utah.

ERICA BURMOOD (BA) is a student at The Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences, College of Osteopathic Medicine, and expects to graduate with a Doctorate of Osteopathic Medicine in 2021. Following graduation, she plans to serve in an area with a shortage of health professionals, where she can focus on community health care education and disease prevention.

MIRANDA DENNY (BAcc) is an audit appraiser with the County of San Diego.

DENNIS DIENST (MS) completed USD’s master’s program in supply chain management in October 2013, was awarded his degree in January 2014, and was promoted in March 2014.

GILLIAN GORELIK (BA) is a year-round camp coordinator with the South Bay YMCA and the Border View YMCA.

SLOANE KELLER (MAPJ) recently returned from serving in the Peace Corps in Paraguay.

AMBER LITTLEJOHN (JD) is in regulatory/government affairs with the American Herbal Products Association.

RAJ MOONESINGHE (BBA) is the finance director at inKind Capital, formerly known as EquityEats, a Certified B corporation providing zero-percent financing to the food and beverage industry.

NICOLE STENOISH (BA), ’17 (JD) is an associate in the San Diego office of Fisher Phillips, a national labor and employment law firm. Previously, Nicole clerked at the U.S. Attorney’s Office and served as a judicial extern for the Honorable Gonsalo Curiel and the Honorable William Gallo of the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. She also interned with the San Diego Unified School District Office of General Counsel.

TIM WELSH (BS/BA) is the senior computer scientist at Mitre Corporation. He is the principle investigator on independent research and development projects related to machine learning.

BRITTANY WILLIAMS (BA) completed her master’s degree in Madrid and now works in the medical device field in San Diego.


TYLER BOYCE (BA) is a product reporting specialist at Medtronic Diabetes, helping to ensure Medtronic’s compliance with FDA regulations. “I am still applying to jobs in the entertainment industry.”

COLBY EDSON (BBA) reports that he and his wife, Chloe ’15, were married after graduating in 2015 and they have a daughter, Naomi. Colby joined Target as an executive team leader in a store and was promoted to district-level manager in March 2017.

FABRIZIO ELLIS (BBA) founded a professional coaching company called DreamPath.

JAZMIN GARCIA (BA) transitioned into a program management role with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, where she oversees the public policy and graduate fellowship programs. “Happy to connect with anyone interested in the leadership development programs we offer in Washington, D.C.,” Jazmin says.

VICTOR GUADARRAMA (BBA) has worked in a real estate education company since graduating. “I am part of the live events team and I get to travel one to three times a month.” Victor has traveled to 26 new states and 43 new cities.

JASON GUO (BBA) accepted a tax analyst position at Donahue Schriber, which owns the Del Mar Highlands Town Center and other properties. Recently, he relocated to Irvine, California, and continues to expand his personal real estate portfolio.

COURTNEY HUDSON (BBA) has worked with the FDIC since graduation as a financial institution specialist.

NICOLE KRUKENKAMP (BBA) has been working in sales and account management for Houzz in Irvine, California, since graduation. “I have been there for almost two and a half years now and I love it!”

SIENNA LA ROCCA (BA) leads design communications at Facebook as a consumer communications associate in the communications department.

NATHANIEL MAGILL (BS/BA) has been working for three years and is now with his second company. “Not sure where the years are going!”

JASMINE MALLEN (BA) earned a Master of Public Administration from San Diego State University and is working in council administration at City Hall in San Diego.

SAMUEL McCLAY (BS/BA) is stationed in San Diego as a reactor controls assistant and is attached to the USS Alexandria.

CHRISTOPHER NGO (BA) was promoted to sales manager at a San Diego health care startup. “Looking to recruit recent Torero alumni for entry-level inside sales, especially on my team!”

LARRY NOVELO (BS/BA) is an operations engineer for the U.S. Postal Service.

KATIE RUSSO (MA) is the associate director of Partnership UCLA/Alumni Career Programs in Alumni Affairs at the University of California, Los Angeles.

MICHAEL TIRA (BA) is a math teacher at The O’Farrell Charter School and an MEd student at USD.


JAY BAYLES (BBA) writes, “Enjoying working with the family to bring organic food from around the world to people in Japan.”

ELIZABETH BHAPPU KUDLA (JD) moved to Denver to get married and establish her practice. She worked in constitutional litigation prior to joining Sherman and Howard, where she now handles real estate transactional work for cellular communications companies.

SARAH BOOHER (MA) writes, “As soon as I graduated, I got a great new job. I am doing what I love!” Sarah is a donor and member relations specialist at the San Diego Museum of Man.

JOEL BRODFUEHRER (BA) is a second-year law student at the University of Arizona.

STEVEN FRIGO (BBA) moved home to Orange County, California, after graduating and has worked for First Republic Bank for two years.

SANDRO GARCIA (MBA) reports that he is married and has a new job.

ANNIE GORDEN (MAPJ) works at a refugee resettlement agency managing a program to help the most vulnerable refugees achieve self-sufficiency. “My next step will be law school to pursue immigration law/refugee issues.”

DALLAS KESSMAN (BA) is a mortgage loan officer and is “getting involved with a CBD extract company.”

TAYLOR KREBS (BA) works for Seattle Public Schools as an architectural designer specializing in educational space interiors, fixtures and equipment.

ALEXANDER LA BRUNO (BAcc) is an infantry officer with the United States Marine Corps.

ALI LE (BA) writes, “Learning and loving marketing life at the Pendry Hotel!”

JESSICA LEON (BA) has been working at Petco for nearly two years, starting as a merchandise analyst. She was promoted to a vendor analyst recently. Jessica reports that she was married in November 2017 at Founders Chapel, and she also was on hand at USD to volunteer at Homecoming 2017.

CELINE MAZZOLENI (BBA) took on a postgraduate internship with Red Bull in Portland, Oregon, assisting the marketing and sales managers with athlete and brand-building events. After six months, she moved to a new position as a marketing specialist in Nashville, to help with event marketing for the company’s record label. “In the past four months, my role has sent me to Atlanta, Miami, New Orleans, Houston and more to develop our company’s rising artists and create activations for music
festivals and partner venues.”

ZACH MELLEN (MA) relocated to Washington, D.C., in January 2017. He is lead bartender at Tico and an intern with the EU Policy and Outreach Partnership.

CALI MOORE (BBA) lives in Los Angeles and is working in corporate partnerships for the Los Angeles Rams.

KRISTEN OBANA (BA) lives in New York City and is an associate customer service manager for Adobe. “I help manage our relationship with top financial services and insurance customers and their Adobe digital marketing programs.”

DUDA SANADZE (BA) is a professional basketball player, currently playing with Pistoia Basket in Italy.

ERIN SMITH (BAcc) is a member of the assurance staff at EY and is working toward her CPA license.

ELENI STANG (BA) has returned to USD for the two-year multiple-subject credential as part of the master’s credential cohort program.


CHARLOTTE CASSIDY (BA) traveled to Paraguay for a medical mission trip after graduating. She is scribe in the emergency departments of local hospitals in Grand Rapids, Michigan. “Next year, I plan to attend graduate school to pursue physician assistant studies at Grand Valley State University.”

JAYNE ECKELS (BA) is working toward her master’s degree in social innovation at USD and she plans to use her architecture degree to complement this graduate program.

JUSTINE FORDYCE (BA) was offered a full-time research associate position at nanoComposix. “They were quickly impressed with my lab skills and knowledge. This was in part due to my very hands-on experiences in our chemistry and biochem department. Having had undergraduate research really caused me to stand out above other applicants.”

TYLER HENRY (BA) works on two national health campaigns for Rescue Behavior Change Agency.

TJ HODGES (BAcc), ’17 (MAcc) is an audit and assurance assistant at Deloitte & Touche LLP. He competed for USD’s cross country team one last time during his final semester in the master’s program.

JIAN HUA LIU (PhD) recently traveled to the People’s Republic of China. “We enjoyed seeing the Great Wall, riding on an express train from Beijing to Shanghai in 4.5 hours, viewing the beautiful Shanghai city on top of a 100-story skyscraper during a clear day and magnificent night scene in the evening. The Yuyan happiness garden is so beautiful during the day and dazzling at night.”

THONG JOSEPH PHAM (BA) has been taking classes at a community college and applying to graduate school for nursing. “I work two jobs, in a nursing home and a hospital.”

SOFIA RAMIREZ (BA) is a research associate for Latin America in the David Rockefeller Studies Program at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York City. “I research topics in the Western hemisphere and beyond,” she says. “I also coordinate with foreign embassies when receiving prominent officials and in arranging travel to international summits.”

ZULAIRAM RUIZ-AGOSTO (MA) is a counselor in USD’s One Stop Student Center. “I did my graduate assistantship with them during my studies and am so happy I was able to stay!”

VICTORIA (MITCHELL) SAETEUN (BA) is moving from Seattle back to San Diego because her husband received military orders. She is an assistant store manager for Target Corporation.


JESSICA POLAK (BA) writes, “I will be attending my first-choice optometry program at Southern California College of Optometry in Fullerton, starting in Fall 2018! Thanks to USD faculty for preparing me well for this four-year graduate program.”


HEATHER BILHORN ’98 (MBA) passed away in November 2016 from multiple myeloma at the age of 45. She was an exceptional leader with Hewlett-Packard for 20 years. Her memory lives on in the hearts of her two children, husband, parents and many friends.

PROFESSOR EMERITUS LEE GERLACH passed away in the summer of 2017 at the age of 96. His former student and longtime friend Harry Thomas ’73 (BA) remembers Dr. Gerlach as “an inspiring teacher of the sort that changes the direction of lives permanently and for the better.” A well-known poet, Dr. Gerlach was a contributor to many magazines; he published two books and read from his work at the Library of Congress in 1991 at the invitation of Nobel Laureate Joseph Brodsky. To read more, click here.

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