CLASS OF 1993 | 2022 | SPRING ISSUE

Hi Wes friends!  I am writing these notes from Naples, Florida. Things are great in the Sunshine State, but I still remember wandering across the Wesleyan campus on a beautiful snowy day, or borrowing a tray from the dining hall to slide down Foss Hill (in lieu of a sled).  As the years pass, I’m even able to look back at some of those all-nighters and brutally difficult exams with rose-colored glasses. Okay, that’s probably more than enough nostalgia; I’m happy to share some news including travel overseas, a new film, and some amazing career updates.

Jamie Bachrach writes, “Tim and I are still running a wine logistics and distribution company based in Litchfield County, Connecticut.  Our younger daughter Esmee is a sophomore day student at the Taft School and plays soccer/ski races/rows crew, depending on the season.  She’s hoping to get her braces off before masks are no longer required at school; at this rate, she’s probably in luck. . . .   Our older daughter Logan is halfway through a three-year undergraduate degree in politics, philosophy, and economics at Oxford University and loves living (and traveling) abroad. She’s also managed to play soccer/ski race/row crew while in college.  With Tim’s sister’s family, the four of us had an amazing trip to South Africa in August 2021 to celebrate the life of Tim’s mom, who passed away a year ago—and to reunite with Tim’s extended family in Cape Town.  Next up for March 2022 (fingers crossed) is travel to Iceland to see the northern lights and to celebrate Tim’s 50th birthday.”

Jacob Bricca is celebrating the broadcast premiere of the documentary Missing in Brooks County, which he produced and edited–it aired on Independent Lens on over 450 PBS stations across the country on January 31, and streamed for free for the month of February. The film, which had a five-city in-person theatrical run and garnered over 20 awards at film festivals worldwide, tells the story of the migrant death crisis in south Texas through the eyes of two families who are looking for their missing loved ones, and was co-directed by his wife, Lisa Molomot.

Jodi Samuels writes: “I’m still enjoying my work as director of strategic support for colleges and scholars at the Foundation for California Community Colleges. My portfolio focuses on partnering with the community colleges to provide scholarship and emergency aid to students along with grants to the colleges themselves for certain types of educational programs. Over the past year, we’ve seen four people transition out of our team but have also welcomed five new team members, so the ‘great resignation’ has definitely had an impact, but we’ve also seen lots of new talent come into our organization. My spouse, Evan, and I managed to take a wonderful trip to northern Italy in early October for a small group tour that focused on the wine, food, and history of the region. This year, we’re hoping for travel to Hawai’i and Iceland in addition to our usual family destinations of Denver, Austin, and Chicago.”

Tristan Taormino just finished her first year of an MPH graduate program at George Washington University. Her new book, a memoir, will be published by Duke University Press in 2023. Tristan was recently named a Distinguished Sexual and Gender Health Revolutionary by the University of Minnesota Medical School Program in Sexuality for her two decades of work in sex education.

CLASS OF 1993 | 2021–2022 | WINTER ISSUE

Hi Wes friends. Thank you so much for writing in, and sharing your news. In the space below, you will find updates about careers, cross-country moves, a new college president, and the launching of a political campaign. Please continue to share your news with us!

     Micah Cormier emails, “I can report I’ve moved with my family to a quintessential New England town on the Connecticut shoreline, about 30 minutes from Wesleyan. My wife Melissa and I work at Yale, where I make short films to promote research and scholarship at the university (drawing on my past experience working on documentaries for television). I spend the rest of my time trying to be a good dad to my daughter Sadie (12) and son Lucas (8), developing my own documentary projects, and taking beginner piano lessons.”

     Anna Balivet Jordan writes, “I am in the Seattle area working as a celebrant specializing in celebration of life and memorial services. I write and officiate ceremonies across the life cycle including weddings. My website can be found at ritualarrangements.com. I’m also working toward a funeral director’s license and hope to use my directorship to advocate for family directed funerals, and green burial practices.”

     Dan Kapelovitz was a candidate for governor of California in the 2021 recall election.

     Camille McGadney writes, “We are moving to Galesburg, Illinois, where Andy ’92 is the new president of Knox College.”

     Jodi Samuels writes, “Last October, I moved into a new position as director of strategic support for colleges and scholars at the Foundation for California Community Colleges. The position was created to launch the new Finish Line Scholars Program, which provides scholarships to economically disadvantaged students who are at least halfway through their educational program and emergency aid to students facing unexpected financial hardships. The program was created thanks to a pledge of $100 million over 20 years from the Jay Pritzker Foundation, representing the largest gift ever to community colleges! I’m also overseeing two grant programs that support projects for nursing education and real estate education and will be gradually taking over responsibility for the Osher Scholars Program, which provides scholarship support for all 115 California community colleges. Given the current conversations happening nationally and at the federal level about community colleges, it’s an exciting time to be working in this field!”

CLASS OF 1993 | 2021 | ISSUE 1

Hi, all! I heard from lots of people for the first time this go-round. Yay! So without further ado . . .

     Jason Fischer received his PhD in counselor education and supervision from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas this past December.

      Cain Dimon writes, “After 16 years in private practice I have gone into academics. I have joined the Duke University School of Medicine as an assistant professor in the Department of Anesthesiology. I moved to Durham in December. So far all is going very well. Enjoying teaching and the warmer climate of North Carolina versus Michigan.”

     Isaac Kaufman writes, “I have been practicing law in the Twin Cities since 2003. Last year I launched Red Cedar Consulting, a solo practice with a focus on workplace investigations and professional development. This coming June my wife Kimberly Ferencik and I will be celebrating our 20-year wedding anniversary.”

     Alicia Bassuk writes, “As a mother of two 23-year-olds, I am happily empty nesting with my soulmate. I channeled my COVID concerns into co-authoring a COVID Roadmap with a bipartisan team led by the Harvard Ethics Center, and am having my most professional fun working with NBA players, coaches, and front office execs, for which I was awarded an NBA Championship Ring by the Toronto Raptors in 2019!”

     Diego von Vacano spent most of the year 2020 as an advisor to the Luis Arce presidential campaign in Bolivia. Socialist Arce eventually won in October in a landslide of 55 percent of the vote. Thanks to Dennis White (Wes class of 2019), he collaborated to work with Bernie Sanders, who provided crucial support during the interim de facto government preceding Arce’s win. Diego continues to advise Arce on a range of issues, from academics, to relations to the U.S., to the emerging lithium sector for green energy.

     Emmanuelle C. Slossberg is now the vice president of marketing for the Durst Organization, a 100-year-old family-owned real estate owner, developer and operator. The company sets new standards of environmental stewardship and is dedicated to the principles of innovation, integrity, community and sustainability. She’s also joined the board of the Consortium for Sustainable Urbanization (CSU.global) a collaboration between UN Habitat and the design and civic community that shares global best practices for how to design, maintain and plan the built environment.

      Jacob Bricca is celebrating the release of the feature documentary Missing in Brooks County which he produced and edited. It has played at over a dozen film festivals, winning Best Southern Documentary at the Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival, and will have its broadcast premiere in fall 2021 on PBS’s Independent Lens. He is at work on a book called How Documentaries Work for Oxford University Press. 

     Speaking of documentaries, Aaron Matthews writes, “A documentary I recently made, The War and Peace of Tim O’Brien, is set for release on March 2. The film follows renowned author and Vietnam veteran, Tim O’Brien, struggling to write one last book. That book incidentally started when Bill Shapiro ’87, who was the editor-in-chief of Life at the time, encouraged Tim to pen an essay for the magazine about becoming a father at a late age. That was 20 years ago, and my documentary chronicles Tim writing the book that grew out of the essay for Bill. Jennifer Mittelstadt ’92 is the producer on the film.”

     And furthering the theme of documentaries: Dan Crane stopped being a print journalist to become a documentary filmmaker. In late 2019, he began working with Matt Tyrnauer ’91, producing a documentary for Showtime that should air in late 2021. He spent most of lockdown working remotely from his new home in a small town in northern England, where he wrote and directed a documentary titled Let Me Be Me about an autistic boy who undergoes an experimental treatment and grows up to become a fashion designer (produced by Wavelength Productions). His three-year-old daughter has picked up an English accent, and he is trying to master the art of making Yorkshire puddings.

      Paul J. Darcy writes, “After eight years leading marketing for the job site Indeed, I left to become CMO of the fast-growing software company Miro. Despite the job change, I am happy to be staying put in downtown Austin with Gray (18), Ellis (17), and Lia (12) and my partner Patricia. We feel lucky to be able to safely work and go to school during these crazy times.”

      Andy Nordvall writes, “I’ve been enjoying walks along the Los Angeles River, weekly take-out brunch, and surviving the pandemic. My podcast Burn After Pitching now streams on the Grand Geek Gathering Twitch channel. Last year, I signed with a literary agent and took out one picture book (Fjork the Viking) and one middle grade graphic novel (Better Than Dinosaurs!), with more works in the pipeline, and I’ve been teaching English remotely.”

CLASS OF 1993 | 2020 | ISSUE 3

Greetings from Naples, Florida! We have some exciting news from classmates, including travel, moving across the Atlantic, and career updates. Please continue sharing your news!

Lee Ayrton writes, “I have gone into voluntary exile in the bleak, rubble-strewn, and desolate post-industrial wastelands of northern Rhode Island, where for the good of the realm I have been living a monastic life of solitude, Netflix, and take-away pizza. September will see me employed again by AMC Studios on a new series, my last having departed for the great syndication market in the sky, cut down after a mere two seasons.” 

Darren Linkin writes, “Hi class of ’93. No change in job, location, etc., but enjoy reading about everyone else’s interesting adventures!”

Noah Rosen emails, “I remain an associate professor of neurology and psychiatry at the Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra. My primary job is program director of the neurology residency and the director of the Headache Center. This year I was elected to the board of the American Headache Society and I became a voting board member of the UCNS (United Council of Neurologic Subspecialties). I’m continuing on my work to make Headache Medicine recognized by the federal government.”

Jodi Samuels writes, “My spouse, Evan, and I are working full-time from home, and our cats are loving the extra daily attention. We’ve cut way back on our travel, of course, but we have managed some local trips for wine tasting and hiking in Lassen Volcanic National Park as well as visits to family in Denver and Austin (no travel restrictions or quarantine requirements for those areas, thank goodness). Our weather in Sacramento has included some nasty heat waves and lots of terrible air quality with smoke from the multiple wildfires that have already broken records even though the peak of wildfire season isn’t typically until next month. Hmm . . . record temperatures, un-breathable air, global pandemic, economic downturn, racial injustice . . . hard to find bright spots and beauty and joy in the world these days, but we’re trying!” 

Antonia Townsend emails, “After nine years in San Francisco, we are moving to London. I’ll continue to run my lingerie business, Enclosed, in the land where they understand the word knickers. Please reach out if you are visiting the land of winkle-pickers and over-cooked vegetables.”

Finally, it is with great sadness that we learn of Adam Ford’s passing on July 10, 2020. We will provide more details as we hear them.

Suzanna Henshon | suzannahenshon@yahoo.com 

Sarah Estow | sarah_estow@hotmail.com

CLASS OF 1993 | 2020 | ISSUE 2

Hi, everyone! Here’s some news from our far-flung classmates:

Larissa Labay writes, “Chris Thompson and Geoff Union recently hosted a Zonker Harris Day reunion to cheer up all of the Wes folks in quarantine. Live-streamed their concert from Golden, Co. Saw a bunch of familiar faces (virtually). Jason Gedamke, Dave Pazmino, Stacy Olitsky, Joy Roth, Mike O’Malley, Jon Turati, Josh Moore, and Ethan Piper ’92. Felt just like Foss Hill 1993!”

Sylvia Sironi-Rowe is working from home for the Clinton Health Access Initiative. It’s nothing new except that everyone else is walking into her office all the time! She is expanding laboratory systems in developing countries and now focusing on adding COVID-19 response capability into the plan. She is happily married to Ian Rowe, who is running Public Prep, a charter school network in NYC, and working on a book. They are doing their best to parent Camille (10) and Oscar (8) in quarantine, who are simultaneously bored out of their minds and overwhelmed by discreet distance-school assignments. Sylvia and Ian are not teachers but know that even if they were, they would still be the last people their kids want to have taught them how to calculate the angles of a parallelogram. Stay safe, everyone!

Jon Chesto writes, “I do appreciate the connections with old friends at this time in particular. Wish I had more to report on my end. Just life in suspended animation here in Boston.”

Brett Sokol writes: “In this era of screens, I’m trying to spend as much time with old-fashioned ink and paper as possible. To that end, Letter16 Press, the nonprofit publishing house I co-founded, just released its fourth hardcover book spotlighting the work of unsung photographers from the pre-digital era: Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah: Andy Sweet’s Summer Camp 1977. Yes, it’s the golden era of knee-high tube socks, toasted marshmallows, and teenage crushes.

“I’m also writing about the (locked-down) world of arts and culture for the New York Times with recent dispatches on everything from the art scene in Seoul, South Korea, to how independent radio stations are handling the coronavirus, when having DJs even enter their broadcast studios is dangerous. (So many buttons to touch!).

“On a further offbeat radio note, you can now hear David Mittleman on the air every Saturday night into the wee hours on Tucson, Arizona’s KXCI 91.3 FM. He’s spinning avant-garde jazz records that make his (and my own) WESU radio shows back during our Wes days sound like Muzak.

“Also in Tucson, and teaching documentary film production at the University of Arizona is Jacob Bricca, now a member of the prestigious American Cinema Editors society. Singer/songwriter Chris Huff is also hard at work, virus be damned. Touring beyond his home base of Philadelphia is obviously on hold, but you can still catch him and his guitar performing live at facebook.com/huffmusic.

“As for Wesleyan, I’m happy to report that our alma mater soldiers on. I know this personally. I’ve heard my wife, Lisa Dombrowski ’92, an associate professor of film studies at Wes, teaching her classes online via Zoom this past semester as her students have been hunkered down everywhere from Boston to Beijing. Lisa is also at work on a book about the late career of Robert Altman, with lots of juicy material unearthed from his archives.

“Finally, I was saddened to hear that our classmate Max Reich passed away this spring. Max never had much patience for sentimentality or time for propriety—some of you may recall his involvement in the Great Egyptian Mummy Heist of 1990. But I know I’m not the only one Max helped keep sane during our time in Middletown, and after. He will be missed.”

Jessica Gutow Viner was named the new director of admission and financial aid at Harpeth Hall, a college-preparatory school for girls in Nashville, after having served as the associate director of admission and financial aid.

Laura Davidson Ross writes, “Greetings from Los Angeles. In this time of fear and uncertainty for our country, I feel lucky to work in education to figure out how to continue to educate students during this pandemic. I am grateful to report that I have been named the new associate head of school at the Harvard-Westlake School, where I have been serving as the head of upper school for the last three years. I am also finishing my first year of service as an alumni-elected trustee on the Wesleyan Board. It’s been a real honor to represent the Class of ’93 in those meetings, and I am looking forward to helping to continue to guide the university through the next few years.”

And finally, Jessica Sherwood writes from Providence, R.I., “I like to wave from a safe distance at neighbors Olivia Milonas (married to Ben Milligan) and Amy Grundt ’94 when they walk by.”

Many thanks to everyone who wrote in. Please do stay in touch! I hope you and your loved ones are staying healthy and safe during these difficult times.

Suzanna Henshon | suzannahenshon@yahoo.com 

Sarah Estow | sarah_estow@hotmail.com

CLASS OF 1993 | 2020 | ISSUE 1

Hi, classmates! This month we have some exciting updates about travel, careers, and a new film premiere. Please send us an update in the future about your post-Wes life.

Anne Beaven writes, “I just got back from a week in Panama with my wife, 10-year-old son, and mom. It was a fantastic trip. Happy 2020 to all.”

Jorge Campos writes: “2019 gave me another wonderful opportunity to travel to far off places with many fun memories created. The new year began with my return from Mexico via Toronto on my NAFTA trip. My first destination, Zürich, proved a perfect way to indulge in hot chocolate while looking out on those majestic, snow-capped Alps in mid-January. Then off to Africa. Johannesburg energy was upended by amazing Cape Town. Italia called but my next trip wasn’t one I wanted to take. My bright-eyed grandfather (Papagrande) passed away.

“March rolled around and I marched on. This time to New Zealand and a marathon from south to north. April brought me to Singapore, my personal delight. My stay in Tokyo provided another spring surprise with the city blooming all over. After a rare, relaxing period in NYC, it was back on a flight to Hong Kong. My next stop—South Korea—was perfectly timed to enjoy delicious food with kimchi. My return to New York via Frankfurt gave me an opportunity to spend time with my friends in that city. The following month, July, meant my pilgrimage to Mexico to visit family. Shortly thereafter, Japan with a marathon zigzag. Then, Berlin in August followed, which enchanted me. Passing up business trips caught up to me when it became necessary to head south, this time to Brazil. A routine trip put my world upside down. It wasn’t the trips that mattered as much as the people along the way.”

Jaclyn Friedman emails: “My fourth book Believe Me: How Trusting Women Can Change the World has been published by Seal Press. It’s an anthology that I co-edited with my Yes Means Yes collaborator, Jessica Valenti, and features brilliant essays from the likes of Tatiana Maslany, Dahlia Lithwick, Representative Ayanna Pressley, and lots more. About to head out on book tour, where I’ll see Wes pals Janice Jones, Shana Boniface, Elizabeth Toohey ’94, and Tristan Taormino.”

Therese Casper is finishing up her documentary film, The Invisible Father, tracing her father’s underground life, and considering both the promise and pitfalls of authentic creativity. You can learn more at pieroheliczer.com.

Noel Lawrence writes: “I am premiering my feature Sammy-Gate at International Film Festival Rotterdam. The film is a dark, political satire about how Sammy Davis, Jr. caused Watergate. Here’s more info: iffr.com/en/2020/films/sammy-gate.”

Jason Rekate is moving back to New York after 14 years overseas in five different cities to be the head of Citi’s Global Corporate Bank in September.

Bronwen Williams Sainsbury writes in, “I completed my MBA at Seattle University and I’m president of a home decor company, Stack Resources.”

Jodi Samuels writes: “I had a job transition in early November and I’m now the new senior grants specialist at the Foundation for California Community Colleges, which is just two blocks from our home in downtown Sacramento. My focus is on strategically building up the government grants portfolio to help reach the foundation’s goal of doubling our impact by 2028 and to support the chancellor’s innovative ‘Vision for Success’ for the entire California community college system. I co-presented a session on mentoring at the national Grant Professionals Association (GPA) Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., and served on a panel for another session related to mentoring. My spouse, Evan Smestad, and I spent New Year’s Eve 2020 in Vancouver, B.C., and have plans to celebrate in Iceland next year.”

Emmanuelle Chammah-Slossberg writes, “After growing up and staying in NYC, Matt and I finally decided to take Eva (11) and Mae (7) to get the ‘open-air’ experience and moved to Westport, Conn. I am now a principal at CetraRuddy Architecture, where I have been for the last 11 years. I joined the Board of the Consortium for Sustainable Urbanization (CSU.global). We will be honoring Alexandria Villanseñor, a 14-year-old climate activist and founder of Earth Uprising. Other than thinking about how we can change the world in that way, one piece at a time, we are plenty busy adjusting to our new schools, neighbors and making new friends. So happy to be able to have big dinners and walk to the beach!”

Kim Smith, who resides in Montpelier, Vt., was promoted to the position of program manager at Everybody Wins! Vermont, a reading mentor program that serves over 600 elementary schoolchildren every year.

Diego von Vacano was named full professor of political science at Texas A&M University.

Ari Abel writes, “I am a facial plastic surgeon in Wilmington, Del., and have two daughters—wonderful young women who are 11 and 12. I followed up my brief wrestling career at Wesleyan by serving as the ring physician at several Ultimate Fighting Championships.”

Suzanna Henshon | suzannahenshon@yahoo.com 

Sarah Estow | sarah_estow@hotmail.com

CLASS OF 1993 | 2019 | ISSUE 3

Greetings from North Carolina! Here’s some of what our classmates are up to:

Chris Osmond became associate director of the Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership at the Reich College of Education of Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C., where he is beginning his 10th year on faculty. Visit him!

Chris Cowan writes, “My fun news is that I just became the chair of the department of neuroscience at Medical University of South Carolina.”

Antonia Townshend got married to John Marshall in Washington D.C., 1.5 years post-baby Jack. In attendance were Seth Cousins ’91, Grady Clouse ’90, Todd McNiff, Lucius “Buster” Outlaw, Erica Terry Derryck ’95, and Amy Mayhew. David Derryck was home with their kids, but was represented by Erica.

Ericka Shulman Tullis moved with her husband, Paul, and their daughters, Vivian and Sabine, to Amsterdam. Paul will continue his work as a freelance journalist, Sabine will attend the Dutch National Ballet Academy, and Vivian will attend the Amsterdam International Community School. For her part, Ericka—who recently left UCLA after 14 years as a child health policy analyst and research project manager—plans to focus on learning Dutch and pursuing a new career in equine-assisted psychotherapy.

Karen Powell joined the nonprofit board of Sport Climbing Victoria, as her daughter, Grace Crowley, is a member of the Australian National Sport Climbing Team. She’s looking to connect with any Wes alumni involved in competitive sport climbing organizations, regardless of location. In 2019, they’ve traveled to China, Switzerland, France, and Japan for IFSC competitions including the World Championships in Tokyo (the site of the 2020 Olympics, where sport climbing will debut as an Olympic sport). Karen teaches law and was appointed the JD director at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia.

Many thanks to everyone who sent in their news. Please keep the information coming!

Suzanna Henshon | suzannahenshon@yahoo.com 

Sarah Estow | sarah_estow@hotmail.com

CLASS OF 1993 | 2019 | ISSUE 2

Hi, classmates. This month we have some exciting news. Thanks to the people who wrote in last minute with updates!

Jason Fischer is living in San Antonio with his wife, Sunny, and sons, Xavier and Kingston. He is a licensed professional counselor while finishing his doctorate in counselor education at St. Mary’s University.

Hadley Gustafson is enjoying a healthy summer in the forest of Upcountry Maui and enjoying documentary, corporate, academic, and magazine photo work on Maui, Oahu, and Big Island.

Michael Hanna has been working for many years as an independent medical writer and scientific consultant in the U.S., Germany, and other countries. He has published a book about medical scientific writing called How to Write Better Medical Papers.

Keith Hay joined the Polis administration in Colorado as the director of utility policy at the Colorado Energy Office. He writes: “I have enjoyed working on climate and energy legislation and serving as an expert witness at the state Public Utilities Commission.”

Sue Henshon’s newest book, Teaching Empathy: Strategies for Building Emotional Intelligence in Today’s Student, will be published by Prufrock Press in October.

Janice Jones is a clinical psychologist and faculty member at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. “I just married the man of my dreams, Zack Medway, whom I met in a yoga class (so very LA!). He came to Reunion with me last year and got a chance to meet some of our classmates before our big day, some of whom came out to celebrate with us, including Jaclyn Friedman, Geetanjali Chander, Jenny Simon Tabak, Larry Yang ’94, and Elizabeth Gilbert ’92. It was the most magical night of our lives!”

Tim Olevsky teaches band and coaches his middle school’s Knowledge Bowl team. “I’m excited to help train the next generation of nerds (or, rather, intellectually curious teens who are excited about learning and knowledge—you know, Wesleyan types)!”

Maren Roush has attended several workshops recently

Maren Roush, a business unit manager for NSF International’s Biosafety Cabinet (BSC) program, and husband Nick celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary. Their older son will attend University of Michigan and their younger son is entering seventh grade. “This past year has had me offering test sessions for BSC field certifiers—the individuals who perform field testing and maintenance on these important containment devices for microbiological and biomedical laboratories in Thailand, Singapore, England (on behalf of Mongolia and Kazakhstan), and India, with many future international workshops in the planning stages.”

Jodi Samuels is now a director of education at CalSAE (calsae.org) and is looking forward to coming back full circle to her education roots.

Matt Schneider and wife Jean welcomed their second daughter Harriet Saul McCombe Schneider on Jan. 13. “Hattie is is all smiles for her big sister Louise, now 3. Since expecting our second child wasn’t enough change in our lives, we decided that we should also buy our first home and move in, only weeks before Hattie’s birth. And since that wasn’t enough, I thought I would change jobs. And work from home. With a newborn. We live in Brooklyn.”

Emmanuelle Slossberg, husband Matt, and daughters Eva and Mae have moved from NYC to Westport, Conn. “Getting the best of both worlds—city and quiet. Madeleine Lansky hung out with us in January and it was great seeing everyone at the 25-year bash. I’m still the director of strategy for CetraRuddy and we are working on affordable housing projects with HPD.”

John Weathers is a senior researcher at the 21st Century Partnership for STEM Education (21pstem.org), where he led a study of teacher shortages in the Mississippi Delta, funded by the Walton Family Foundation and is part of a USAID-funded project developing innovative STEM public high schools and related university degree programs for educators in Egypt to teach students to solve the grand challenges of Egypt (e.g., lack of clean water, etc.), which has led to many students winning top awards at ISEF and beyond.

Anne Castaneda created CircleTales, a creative tabletop storytelling game, made of bamboo and printed with soy inks. It’s being marketing as an alternative to mainstream entertainment and it’s a great storytelling game for kids aged 9-plus and for adults of all ages. She launched a Kickstarter for it, too.

Michelle Gagnon’s next middle grade novel, The Echo Park Castaways (Harper Collins), will be released under the pen name M.G. Hennessey on July 7.

Lastly, there is sad news to share. Nicole Zell recently passed away. She was the devoted mother of three young boys and lived in Oregon. We will pass along more details when we hear them.

SuZanna Henshon | suzannahenshon@yahoo.com 

Sarah Estow | sarah_estow@hotmail.com

Nicole Zell ’93

Nicole Zell ’93 passed away on June 4, 2019. A singer/songwriter, Nicole majored in English while at Wesleyan. She leaves behind three young children. She was 48.

CLASS OF 1993 | 2019 | ISSUE 1

Hi, everyone! I hope you are doing well. Today I’m remembering some of the amazing classes I had at Wesleyan. But I’m also thinking about the students who added such a special dynamic in and out of the classroom—that’s all of you. Since 1989, you’ve inspired me with your passion, intellectual curiosity, and generosity. Here are some updates.

Christopher Cowan writes: “My wife (Jessica) and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary in December. I hosted two current Wesleyan students (Jack Wolf ’20 and Nathan Ehrlich ’19) in my lab at Medical University of South Carolina (Charleston, S.C.) for a summer research internship in 2018.”

Morgan Harting e-mails: “As I reflect on 2018, one the highlights was seeing so many classmates at our 25th Reunion. I was reminded of what a special connection we share, having spent such formative years together, and the fondness I will always feel even though so many years have now passed since our graduation.”

Nadya Karyo writes in, “I’ve worked the last 20 years at the bespoke creative recruitment firm, Wert&Co., have lived in three apartments in NYC over the last 25 years, and am married to the same person for 13! Guess I’m not big on change. I had a great time at our Reunion last summer with my husband, Jay Cheshes (Michigan ’93), who had a surprise mini-reunion of his own with his Columbia J-school classmate, Jon Chesto. Was sincerely missing Carlyn Henry Mandelbaum, whom I’d love to hear from! I’m also looking forward to another reunion this year as I plan my high school 30th with my dear friend, Jennifer White Karp.”

Paul Martin is a senior vice president and chief diversity officer at Sony Pictures, where he creates initiatives to “help create a culture that embraces and elevates the differences within our corporation and creative families.” Paul resides in Los Angeles with his wife, Laury, and his son, Aaron.

Stacy Olitsky emails: “I am living in the Philadelphia area. I am an associate professor at Saint Joseph’s University, where I research school-university partnerships and equity issues in STEM education and teach courses on social foundations and science methods for elementary school teachers. I love being back in a university environment with great students and colleagues, and I am glad I was influenced by the intellectual and social environment at Wesleyan. In my free time, I play banjo and record with several local bands, mostly accompanying singer-songwriters (Sarah and the Arrows, Kicking Down Doors, Meghan Cary with Analog Gypsies, The Cornerstones, and The Spiritual Window Shoppers). My daughters, ages 10 and 13, also love music and science, and the older one writes songs.”

Jodi Samuels writes about a vacation she took with spouse Evan, who completed four years at Intel, making him eligible for a four-week sabbatical. “We spent Christmas with my family in Austin and then left Sacramento on Dec. 27 with a destination of Sydney, Australia, where we celebrated New Year’s Eve at the famous Opera House with dinner, the opera gala, and two sets of fireworks. We left Sydney on Jan. 3 and spent three nights in Wellington, one of our favorite international cities. From there, we headed to Christchurch and began an eight-day independent tour of the South Island, starting with the TranzAlpine train journey from Christchurch to Greymouth and then lots of coach travel to get us to Franz Joseph (heli hike on the glacier), Queenstown (zip line and sheep station farm tour), Te Anau (Milford Sound cruise in the fjord), and Dunedin (Otago Peninsula wildlife cruise and tour). We’ll finish the tour in Christchurch and spend two nights there on our own before returning to the U.S. on Jan. 16. Then we’re home for a few days before the second part of the sabbatical adventure, which will take us back to Hawai’i for nine days, splitting time between the Big Island and Oahu.”

SuZanna Henshon | suzannahenshon@yahoo.com 

Sarah Estow | sarah_estow@hotmail.com