Alumni News and Stories

Career news, life events and alumni success stories
In this Section

Your fellow alumni readers want to know want what you're up to these days. Share your news about job changes, promotions, awards/recognition, retirement, and family milestones with us. Class notes are featured in our Outlook email newsletter and annual magazine. 

Here are some common reasons to send us a class note:

  • A new job or promotion 
  • A baby or adopted a child
  • You got married or entered into an official union 
  • Published a book
  • A fellow alumni has passed away

Submit a Class Note


Jeff Bzdawka `85 was inducted into the Hospitality Technology Hall of Fame.

Jennie Kautz `16 received the BOMA 2022 Emerging Leader of the Year award.

Olivia Will `18 earned an advanced certificate in bank marketing from the American Bankers Association’s Bank Marketing School in April.

David Bates `76 sold a restored 1941 Boeing-Stearman Biplane to John Paul Jones, bass guitarist for Led Zeppelin rock band in South Hampton, England.

Dave Rasmussen `85 retired after 33 years with the International Paper Company and four years in construction.

Karyn Roszak `97 retired from 3M after 34 years of service.

Career News: new jobs, promotions, awards and retirements
  • Rodney Hanson `50 is a volunteer at a medical equipment bank.  
  • Robert Spinti `54 received the Outstanding Eagle Scout for Chippewa Valley Council by the National Eagle Scout Association in 2020.
  • Gloria Gade Hardy `68 received first place for her wool weaving in the Daughters of the American Revolution American Heritage Contest Fiber Arts – Weaving Category. It will be displayed at the DAR national convention in Washington, D.C., in June.
  • Craig Petersburg `71 published his fifth book entitled “Join the Sky, Humanity’s Endless Search.” It is a poetry compilation spanning over five decades of writing.
  • Jim Braun `73 retired in 2007 after teaching special education for over 30 years in various schools around Colorado.
  • Randolph Macholl `73 works part-time at AutoZone after of 50 years working full time. He is a grandpa and has been married for 37 years.
  • Thomas Wiltzius `73 is being inducted into the Fox Cities Chamber of Commerce Business Hall of Fame on January 20, 2022, for his role as an executive coach and his collaborative contributions in the formation of New North, Inc.
  • Kay Emerson Zimmerman `74, the associate vice provost for marketing and partnership development at NC State University, is retiring after two decades dedicated to online and distance learning.
  • Pete Sesselman `74 retired in 2018 after working 42 years in various vocational rehabilitation positions. The last 19 years were with Montana Vocational Rehabilitation.
  • Steve Weber `74 retired in 2017 after 38 years as an international captain for Delta Airlines.
  • Deborah Ebert Gangnon `75 retired in June 2021 after teaching in the sewing industry and education for 45 years.
  • Jon Schoenborn `75 retired in December 2021 from International Paper Inc. after working 46 years in the corrugated packaging industry.
  • Bill Pierquet `76 retired after 40 years of multi-unit restaurant and retail development.
  • David Bates `76 sold a restored 1941 Boeing-Stearman Biplane to John Paul Jones, bass guitarist for Led Zeppelin rock band in South Hampton, England.
  • Kirk Meintsma `76 retired from Metropolitan Mechanical Contractors after 12 years of being a project manager.
  • Kevin Lewis `77 will be retiring as president/CEO of Building Owners and Managers Association of Greater Minneapolis in December 2021.
  • Pamela Campbell `77 retired as a registered health information technician from Children’s Hospital & Clinics of Minnesota.
  • Terry Jorgenson `77 retired in August after over 44 years with IBM and Lenovo. He continues to reside in Apex, N.C., with his wife, Sharon.
  • Bernice Vieth Fromuth `78 retired as a contract administrator for Defense Contracts Management Agency. She worked in their Reading and New Cumberland, Pa. offices for over 37 years.
  • Edith Jones Zumwalt `78 retired after 31 years working for Lincoln Public School, Nebraska, as the director of food service.
  • Julie Dierauer `78 celebrated 45 years as a professional artist and art teacher.
  • Colette Crotty Fisher `79 retired from teaching family and consumer sciences at Ottumwa High School in Ottumwa, Iowa after 42 years.
  • John Muren `80 retired from Henkel Adhesives after 37 years. He resides with his wife, Denise, in Westerville, Ohio.
  • Dick Amundson `81 retired as a senior principal software engineer at Raytheon Technologies.
  • Barb Chromy Mader `81 retired after teaching family and consumer science for 39 years.
  • Kathryn “Katie” Schuld Wilson `81 was appointed USDA deputy under secretary for food nutrition, and consumer science by President Obama from 2015-2017. An annual award was created in her honor in 2020. She was also named as a change maker by the Rockefeller Foundation in 2021.
  • William Kelly `81 retired in February 2021 after 40 years in the electronics manufacturing industry. He resides in the Milwaukee area.
  • Sandra Frey Hughes `81 retired from teaching for the Westside Union School District in Lancaster, Cali.
  • Bob Berth `82 is the president of the Red Arrow Snowmobile & ATV Club of Townsend. The club was just inducted into the International Snowmobile Hall of Fame in Eagle River and was named the American Council of Snowmobile Association 2021 International Club of the Year and 2021 National Snowmobile Club of the Year.
  • Barry Bauer `83 currently employed as a program manager with Lockheed Martin was recognized by the Engineer’s Council during the 67th Annual Awards event on February 26, 2022.
  • Debra Johnson Bell `83 retired from teaching elementary school after 35 years in the Boyceville School District. She was a “looper” teaching 2nd then 3rd grade for over 20 of those years. It was the best job ever, with the exception of her current role of watching her grandson, born Aug. 19, 2020.
  • Paul Helm `83 retired after 37 years as a technical education instructor. He started his career at Oakfield High School and retired from North Fond du Lac School district.
  • Jennifer Knutson `83 is president of Lenhardt Property Management in Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Vickie Peterson Meyer `83 retired in June after teaching family and consumer science for 29 years at Sheboygan Falls High School.
  • Dave Rasmussen `85 retired after 33 years with the International Paper Company and four years in construction.
  • Jeff Bzdawka `85 is the chief executive officer of the Knowland Group and was inducted into the Hospitality Technology Hall of Fame. 
  • Mary Cloutier `86 is currently teaching intercultural studies at Moody Bible Institute. She recently published her Ph.D dissertation, entitled “Bridging the Gap, Breaching Barriers: The Presence and Contribution of (Foreign) Persons of African Descent to the Gaboon and Corisco Mission in Nineteenth-Century Africa.”
  • Jay Jones `87 received the 2021 Wisconsin Hotel & Lodging Association Associate of the Year.
  • Jim Brill `87 retired from UPS, Inc after 33 years. He resides with his wife, Joy, in Milton, GA.
  • Adam Bredesen `08 graduated in December from the University of Hartford-CT with a master's degree in business administration with a healthcare management emphasis.
  • Charlie Brown `87 will retire from teaching and coaching at Cambridge High School in Cambridge, Ill. on May 24, 2022.
  • James Gorecki `88 is a product specialist for Union Trailer and Power Equipment in Chippewa Falls.
  • Robb Vandenberg `88 partially retired in 2021 and is now enjoying his dream job as a lock tender on the Fox River.
  • Todd Nelson `89 is the owner and president of the Venture X Dallas Braniff Centre, a coworking flex space, in Dallas, Texas.
  • Michael McCann `90 had been teaching special education for 32 years in Sequim, Wash.
  • Christy `91 and Paul `90 Nesja , launched Nesja Press, a letter press company that designs and sells printed greeting cards, art prints and broadsides.
  • Paul Nesja `90 began a podcast with two fans of the New Yorker Cartoon Caption Contest called Cartoon Caption Contest Podcast.
  • Heidi Allness Krabbenhoft `93 is the transformation project manager at PepsiCo.
  • Shari Bjork `93 was honored by the Commercial Real Estate for Women Network (CREW) as a CREW Visionary posthumously. Shari passed away after a three-year battle with non-smokers lung cancer.
  • JJ Reich `97 senior manager of Press Relations for Federal Ammunition in Anoka, Minn., completed the company’s 100th anniversary hard cover book and magazine project.
  • Karyn Roszak `97 retired from 3M after 34 years of service.
  • Alyssa Sederholm Farrar `98 is the vice president, senior HR business partner at HSA Bank.
  • Ed Neumann `98 is the Project Lead the Way Outstanding Teacher of the Year.
  • Alexis Turk Arnold `99 is the president of Wisconsin Artless Bastard, Inc Gallery. It just received its 501 (c)(3) status in May 2021.
  • Jason Denis `00 is the global head of disability accommodations for Google. He works in the San Francisco office.
  • Dan Ward `05 is the chief operating officer at Olympus Group in Milwaukee.
  • Ashley Howard Goltz `06 and Nathan Goltz `04 own Heirloom Potager, a business that designs organic culinary gardens for foodies and chefs in Orange County, Calif.
  • Reed Crawford `07 is a designer at JLab Audio and recently had one of his products listed on Time Magazine’s best inventions of 2021.
  • Brian Stutz `09 works in the TRIO student support services department at the University of Nebraska Lincoln.
  • Amanda Molandes Mack `11 is a solar project development manager at EDF Renewables.
  • Abby Christensen `13 and Madison Bates Page `13 own a mobile trailer tap called Teardrop Tap.
  • Patricia “Patty” Mallory `13 was honored in March with the 2022 Special Service Award from the Wisconsin & Upper Michigan Florists Association for her dedication and 30 years of membership.
  • Sam Lenhart `14 is a property manager for Halverson & Blaiser Group in St. Paul, Minn.
  • Lisa Schickert Smith `15 is a communications specialist for the Northern Illinois Conference of the United Methodist Church in downtown Chicago, Ill.
  • Jennie Kautz `16 received the BOMA 2022 Emerging Leader of the Year award.
  • Nik Anderson `16 earned a Doctor of Education (EdD) with a specialization in adult education, a post-master certificate in leadership and accountability, and a post-master certificate in adult education leadership from Capella University.
  • Brenda Armstong `17 is an instructional designer/educational technologist at UC Davis Health Office of Continuing Medical Education.
  • Lauren Poppie `18 teamed up with Wagner Skis to create a design for its artist collaboration skis.
  • Olivia Will `18 earned an advanced certificate in bank marketing from the American Bankers Association’s Bank Marketing School in April.
  • Hannah Gostonczik `19 was named 2021 PGA WORKS Fellow for the Carolina PGA section.
  • Tonya Wagner `19 is the dean of Viterbo College of Business, Leadership and Ethics
Life events: births, marriages, anniversaries and deaths


  • Tim Pieper `20 got engaged to Kelsey Yanna `20.



  • Katherine “Paige” Klein `04 and Nick Denney were married on February 20, 2022, in Cincinnati, Ohio.
  • Ashley Duda `14 and Dylan Laabs `18 were married on Oct. 2, 2021
  • Katie Krueger `15 and Kiefer Neumann `19 were married on May 15, 2021, in Chetek. Kiefer proposed in front of Bowman Hall on December 14, 2019, after his graduation. They met at Stout while playing intramural softball.
  • Stacy Springob `15 and Jeremy Boocher were married on September 4, 2021 in the canyons of Salt Lake City, Ut.
  • Alyssa Stinson `16 and Adam Wendt `17 were married on September 25, 2021. They met in the supply chain management program in 2015.
  • Marcy Towle `17 and Ryan Poncius `17 were married in May.
  • Elizabeth Nelsen `19 and Myles Lade `20 were married on July 17, 2021.
  • Louis Miller `19 and Abby Ceaglske Miller `20 got married on November 6, 2021, in River Falls.



  • David `57 and Dorothy Deiter `57 Gresch celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary on January 19, 2022.
  • Marshall Wake `58 and his wife, Beverly, will celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary on August 18, 2022.
  • James “Jim” Schorer `63 and his wife, Kriss, will be married for 58 years in August. They have 3 daughters, 11 grand kids and live in Baileys Harbor WI.
  • Tim `68 and Jane Banks celebrated their 50th anniversary in Key West, Flor. In April.
  • Ray Birk `70 and Denice Kinsley Birk `71 celebrated their 52nd wedding anniversary. They met at the Tap 54 years ago.
  • Mary Lepeska `71 is celebrating 40 years of marriage to Patrick Tearney on October 17, 2021.
  • Tim `71 and Cathe Ewanic `71 Fuchs celebrated their 50th anniversary on August 8, 2021.
  • Leo `71 and Loleta Dodge `71 Undee celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on December 18, 2021.
  • Robert `72 and Linda `72 Newton celebrated 50 years of marriage in August. They were married their last year on campus and live in Sheboygan.
  • Yvonne Doolittle `73 and Robert Mayer `73 celebrated their 48th wedding anniversary in August. They met at UW-Stout in 1970 and were married in 1974.
  • Catherine and Michael Becker `80 will celebrate their 20th anniversary on February 2, 2022.
  • Bernice Vieth Fromuth '78 and her husband, John, celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary on September 5, 2021 with a trip to the PA Grand Canyon near Wellsboro, PA.  They reside in Reading, PA and were introduced by their friends, UW Stout graduates, Ken '77 & Ruth Gerber Rupp '76.
  • Peggy and Dave Wilson `81 celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary on May 2, 2022.
  • Joe Vander Wielen `95 celebrated his 25th anniversary on Sept. 21, 2021


  • Laura Slater-Hatzenbeller `79 and Mark Hatzenbeller `79 welcomed their first granddaughter, Kenna Lu on September 19, 2021.



  • Larry Wright `47, August 27, 2021, Naples, Flor.
  • Ruth Ann Rowe `49, February 4, 2022, Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • Herbert Watanabe `50, February 22, 2022, Hilo, Hawaii
  • Rodney W. Hanson `50, February 16, 2022, Lacey, Wash.
  • Ruth Hazarian `51, February 3, 2022, San Jose, Cali.  
  • Beverly Ryder `52, December 30, 2020, Madison
  • Doris Haldeman Vieth '52, on March 12, 2021, Sauk City
  • Dorothy Krushas Dale `52, March 3, 2022, Menomonie
  • James E. Cook `53, May 1, 2021, Peterborough, N.H.
  • Celia Fritz `55, May 25, 2020, Pinellas County, Flor.
  • Irene Novinski Murray `56, October 6, 2021, Novi, Mich.
  • Vernon Wills `56, April 29, 2022, Paducah, Kent.
  • Anton “Tony” Kotyza `57, June 22, 2021, Kewaunee
  • Carol Ann Gilson Boettcher `57, February 21, 2022, Waterford
  • Lawrence “Larry” Madsen `58, October 20, 2021, Green Bay
  • Tonya Bettisworth `58, March 11, 2022, Bloomfield, Mich.
  • Rodger Rymer `59, April 14, 2022, Cuba City, Iowa
  • Wilma (Willie) Gordon Betts `59, April 25, 2021, Neenah
  • Don Betts `60, May 6, 2021, Neenah
  • Joanne Bauer `60, August 12, 2021, Green Bay  
  • Harry Watts Jr. `61, July 7, 2021, Barnes
  • Ray LeBrun `61, March 8, 2022, Brussels
  • David L. Johnson `62, October 26, 2021, Green Bay
  • Roger E. Hauser `62, November 9, 2021, Platteville
  • Ronald M. Beckman `63, January 23, 2021, Weston
  • Susan Johnson `63, July 8, 2021, Fish Creek
  • Stanley Payne `64, June 30, 2021, Hudson
  • David Fausch `65, November 29, 2021, Clayton, Ohio
  • William Dubats `65, January 5, 2022, Coon Rapids, Minn.
  • Dianne Lindberg Hallongren `66, November 29, 2021, Evanston, Ill.
  • James Danielson `66, February 17, 2022, Baileys Harbor
  • Richard Jobst `66, September 21, 2021, Marion
  • Judy Ziebell Horton `67, August, West Dundee, Ill.
  • John C. Ott `68, March 29, 2021, Syracuse, NY
  • John Rusch `69, December 21, 2021, Bloomington, Minn.
  • Jeffrey Trendel `69, December 19, 2021, Waukesha
  • Dorothy “Dodie” Hill Trinkl `71, April 4, 2022, Cave Creek, Ariz.   
  • Earl Gregoire `71, December 18, 2021, Eau Claire
  • Edward Dean `71, December 15, 2015, Marshfield
  • Marlene S. Chekanoff `71, June 11, 2021, Cape Coral, Fla.
  • Marilyn Rassbach Lamers `71, August 11, 2021, Colfax
  • Steven Hammer `71, September 14, 2020, Apple Valley, Minn.
  • Barbara Bell Abo `72, June 9, 2021, Boise, Idaho
  • Charles M. Kirby `72, February 27, 2021, Sebastian, Flor.
  • Gerald “Gerry” Schneck `72, December 8, 2020, Mankato, Minn.
  • Grady Steensrud `72, September 28, 2021, Kennesaw, Ga.
  • John Green `72, July 9, 2021, Channahon, Ill.
  • Lynne Baltzer `72, June 5, 2020, Ames, Iowa
  • Ruth Larson Hendrikson `72, February 28, 2022, Menomonie
  • Gerald Thomas Hoover `73, February 18, 2022, Superior 
  • James Horne `73, January 9, 2021, Lombardi, Ill.
  • Phyllis Linck Nagler `73, Sept. 19, 2021, Beaver Dam
  • Robert Lampman `73, November 24, 2021, Spooner
  • Barbara Powers Bassett `74, Feb. 10, 2021, Valley Spring, Cali.
  • Eugene Fall `74, February 9, 2022, Amery
  • Jan Barcz `74, Oct. 2, 2020, Central City, Ia.
  • Randy Wegener `76, Sept. 25, 2020, Muskego
  • Mark Taylor `77, September 17, 2021, Viroqua
  • Russell Symes `77, August 1, 2019, Green Valley, Ariz.
  • Mark Thomas `78, May 16, 2022, Menomonie
  • Deborah Jane Ballinger `82, June 2, 2021, Bethlehem, Penn.
  • Katy Golden Richter `82, June 16, 2021, Waukesha
  • Sarah Haugen `82, May 16, 2022, Foxboro
  • David Siskoff `86, April 17, 2022, Northfield, Minn.
  • Jane Young `86, March 19, 2018, Rochester, Minn.
  • Paul Polzer `86, May 18, 2022, Fountain City
  • Monique Ouellette `88, Aug. 1, 2021, Edina, Minn.
  • Andrew Yngsdahl `90, Sept. 3, 2021, Ecuador
  • Christopher Jevne `90, November 19, 2021, Yakima, Wash.
  • Craig Anderson `93, September 23, 2021, Hudson
  • Shari Bjork `93, July 17, 2021, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Matthew Marose `94, December 30, 2021, Elmwood
  • Roger G. Schwagmeyer `94, September 11, 2021, St Paul, Minn.
  • Kathryn “Katie” Shier `00, September 11, 2021, Inver Grove Heights, Minn.
  • Scott Stacey `00, December 16, 2017, Zumbro Falls, Minn.
  • Katherine “Katie” Hermes Capiz `04, April 19, 2022, Inver Grove Heights, Minn.  
  • Shelly Wangen `07, December 4, 2021, Bloomer  
  • Melissa Lemerond `14, April 25, 2022, Green Bay
  • Danielle Fairchild `21, November 30, 2021, Burnsville, Minn.


Friends of UW-Stout Passings: 

  • Elaine “Liz” Lammer, June 7, 2021, Menomonie
  • James Lammer, July 12, 2021, Menomonie
Faculty/Staff News: awards, retirements and deaths


  • Andrew McIntosh, 59, of Colfax, passed away on July 12 after a battle with cancer. McIntosh had worked at UW-Stout since 2004. He was the Digital Process Lab supervisor at the School of Art and Design.
  • Maureen Munger, 87, of Eau Claire, passed away Sept. 4, 2021. Maureen, a professor, retired from UW-Stout in June 1997 after teaching accounting in the business department for 22 years. She also was the program director for the Wisconsin in Scotland program for many years.
  • Marlys Jimos, 84, of Menomonie, passed away Sept. 16, 2021. Marlys retired from UW-Stout in May 1999 as a secretary in the restaurant and tourism management graduate studies department.
  • Betty Ann Utpadel, 96, of Menomonie, passed away Sept. 26, 2021. Betty retired from UW-Stout in 1981 where she worked as a cook.
  • Florence L. Barlow, 98, of Tellico Village, Tenn., and formerly of Menomonie, died Sept. 25, 2021. Florence retired from UW-Stout in 1986 as a university staff member in the math department.
  • Lawrence S. Wright, 98, of Naples, Fla., passed away Aug. 27, 2021. Larry retired from UW-Stout in May 1988 as an associate dean of Graduate Studies and Curriculum after nearly 20 years at the university.
  • Thomas E. Franklin, 76, of Menomonie, passed away Sept. 28, 2021. Tom retired from the psychology department in May 2008, where he served as a professor, program director and department chair.
  • Nancy Ackerman Schofield, 72, of Menomonie, passed away Oct. 5, 2021. Nancy retired as a full professor in 2013 but continued to teach part time until 2015. She taught intermittently in the home economics department from 1979 to 1998 and an array of computer aided design courses full time from 1998 to 2013 in the College of Engineering, Technology and Management.
  • Louis “Lou” L. Klitzke, of Blaine, Minn., passed away Dec. 6, 2021. Louis, 90, retired from UW-Stout in July 1990 as a professor in the psychology department. He served as a coach for the men’s and women’s cross country running programs and distance track from 1977 to 1987. In 1997, he was inducted into the UW-Stout Athletic Hall of Fame.
  • John K. Enger, 75, of Menomonie passed away Dec. 29, 2021. Enger retired from UW-Stout in 2005 as the executive director of university relations. He started at UW-Stout in 1969.
  • Andrea Deacon of Cannon Falls, Minn., passed away Dec. 18, 2021. Deacon, 47, retired from UW-Stout in 2018 as a professor in the English and philosophy department. During her 14 years at UW-Stout, she co-founded and co-directed the Writing Center. She also founded the First-year Composition Program.
  • James R. Daines, 86, of Menomonie, passed away Dec. 31, 2021. Daines, an alum, retired from UW-Stout in 2001 as a professor in the technology department.
  • Paul Anthony Calenberg, 62, professor emeritus of theater, passed away Feb. 23.
  • John A. Perri, 81, of Menomonie, passed away April 2. Perri started teaching at UW-Stout in 1966. He and his colleagues were instrumental in creating what has become the School of Art and Design, the largest in the state.

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