CLASS OF 1980 | 2020 | ISSUE 1

After working briefly in D.C. after graduation, Jonathan Nimer went west for law school at UC Berkeley and, almost 38 years later, is still in the Bay Area. Following a few years in law firms, he went in-house to Sun Microsystems back in 1990 and then, after Oracle bought Sun in 2010, moved to VMware where he spent the past 10 years. Jonathan says that the front row seat to see the evolution of the tech industry has been fun. He and his wife Alicia Torre, (Williams ’75) have three boys (28, 28 and 25). “Life has been kind to me and my family and I feel very fortunate.“

Susan Carroll has been living in the Triangle area of North Carolina since 2004, after living and working for many years in Geneva, Switzerland, and Cambridge, Mass. She spent about 20 years working in the field of international humanitarian assistance, most of this with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. She now directs the Rotary Peace Center at Duke and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a joint graduate program for mid-career world-wide international peace practitioners. Susan’s three children are spread around the East Coast, the oldest a software engineer in the D.C. area, one graduating from Appalachian State University in May and the other taking time off and working for Habitat for Humanity through the AmeriCorps program.

Melissa Stern said that 2020 is starting out as a fun and busy year. Her work will be featured at the Taipei Art Fair in Taiwan from Jan. 16-20. After that she will participate in a show in Long Island City, NY called Claytopia at the Plaxall Gallery. It’s a 12,000 sq. ft. former factory space. Melissa will be having a solo show entitled Strange Girls Shanghai in April at Longmen Arts Projects in Shanghai. She’ll be in China for the opening and hopes to see WesTech folks there!

Irwin Gelman says he especially gets to kvell at the success of his oldest daughter, Audrey, who broke another male glass ceiling by appearing on the September cover of Inc. magazine while eight months pregnant. Audrey’s company, The Wing, is a taking off as a women’s club workspace, and general medium promoting women-to-women business networking. They now have over 10,000 members at sites all over the U.S. and in London, with sites being built in Paris and Toronto. This kvell includes his newest role as a zeide (Yiddish, for debonair grandfather who has retained a full head of dark hair) to a very cute grandson, Sidney Allen, Wesleyan Class of 2042!

Cesar Noble has been in the Hartford, Conn. area since graduation and is a judge of the Superior Court. He says there are lots of Wes grads in the legal community including Carl Taylor ’78 and Bob Nastri ’77 (also judges), Chris Lynch ’81, and Tim Hollister ’78. Cesar has been blessed with three daughters with his youngest graduating from high school this year, his second is in flight school and oldest now lives in Nashville.

After 40 years in the wilderness, Alan Jacobs wrote that he is returning to the Promised Land (Manhattan Upper East Side, of course) and feeling like it’s graduation day all over again. Alan is working on a historical film set in Antarctica and a bunch of short ones on the other six continents. His recent travels allowed him to connect with far-flung Wes friends and family: spent a wonderful weekend at the Berkshires-adjacent home of Vicki Cohen and Kyle Wilkinson, saw Jeff Green on a break from his ER shift in Tel Aviv, Paul Edwards in San Francisco, Dave Stern at his birthday party in NYC, Nancy Danielle Kornfeld ’82 and husband Jordan at their home in New City, New York, and his son, Ron Jacobs ’16, who just started a great job at Live Nation in West Hollywood.

Paul Singarella retired from Latham & Watkins effective Oct. 1, 2019 and opened a family office with his son, Nick. They are focused on large-scale water, energy, and real estate infrastructure projects in North America that are both economically viable and socially valuable. Right now, they are focused on the restoration of the iconic Hotel Laguna next to Main Beach in Laguna Beach—a landmark property on the State’s historic register. Humphrey Bogart and the Hollywood set visited Hotel Laguna in its glory days decades ago.

Ellen Haller happily retired in July 2018 after 30 glorious years on the UC San Francisco School of Medicine faculty. She wrote that her time is now spent “cycling, playing ice hockey, taking a ‘weightlifting for seniors’ (oy!) class, and traveling! My wife is taking a sabbatical in Switzerland, so off I go to keep her company!” Her son, Daniel, will be graduating from Penn in May. He studied molecular and cell bio and was pre-med, but he’s now decided to pursue a career as a professional magician in Chicago. It’s been a passion of his since he was 10, and he’s been offered a few different performance opportunities there starting in late May. “We’re thrilled for him!” (

Jacquie Shanberge McKenna |