Alumni Notes - October 2009-March 2010

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Continue to send us your news on job changes, promotions, schooling and families. We will update these notes every few months. Check the date at the top so you can stay current.



Dave Feldman has retired as a copy editor from the San Diego Union-Tribune.



Margaret Clampitt Bath, retired since 1993, spent 2008 as the volunteer editor of The Resort Report, a monthly magazine for the 750-800 residents of La Posada, a continuing care retirement community in Green Valley, Ariz.



Rosalie Robles Crowe works part time as a feature writer for the Arizona Daily Star.

Gordon Evans retired in 2005 after practicing law for 35 years in Alaska. He and his family live in Juneau.

George Kaine and his spouse were reappointed to a third two-year term as travel ambassadors for the Virginia Good Samaritan RV Travel Club. They live in Harrisonburg, Va.

Cyrille Silberman Kane and her spouse live in Las Cruces, N.M., where they are active volunteers for public radio, the symphony and other cultural events.

Jim Price has had his novel published by Eloquent Books. Of People, Poppies & God is set in the late 1950s and early 1960s focusing on real events related to the drug culture. Jim and his spouse live in Nogales, Ariz. He still writes occasionally for the Nogales International newspaper.



Paul Ledwith is retired and living in Carmichael, Calif. He still has fond memories of putting out the Wildcat with tacos and beer and traveling with Sherman Miller to Casa Grande to produce an edition of the weekly Dispatch.



Ford Burkhart presented recent workshops on writing, editing and teaching sponsored by The New York Times at the University of Texas San Antonio and New Mexico State University. He was invited to present the “Barrett Honors College Lecture” at Arizona State University and gave two days of writing workshops sponsored by The New York Times at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism in downtown Phoenix. He is a science writer for the UA’s BIO5 Institute and for the Research Corporation. His profiles of scientists are listed on sites for the Arizona Alumnus, Bio 5, and the Research Corp.



Peter Winterble is retired and living in Buenos Aires.



Nann Novinski Durando is a self-employed attorney in Tucson. She and her spouse became first-time grandparents in November 2008 to Gisella Mia.



Mary Hiestand Chambers and her spouse have relocated from Seattle to the Phoenix area.

Jane Verkamp Pritchett retired from the University of Idaho journalism department after 14 years teaching media writing and reporting. She says she spent nearly a month at the Grand Canyon closing her family’s 102-year-old “tourist trap” on the south rim.



Mary Alice Kellogg is the editorial director/content manager for Voyages North America, a Web site launched nationally in spring 2009. She lives in New York City.

Sheryl Kornman, formerly a reporter and assistant city editor with the Tucson Citizen, joined KGUN Channel 9 as a news assignment editor.

Barbara Roth Schuler is an assistant managing editor with Newsday. She lives in Huntington, N.Y.



Patty Weiss Gelenberg is the communications director for the Center on Wisconsin Strategy, a national policy center and field laboratory for high-road economic development. She and her spouse live in Madison, Wis.

Elaine Nathanson is the public relations director for BolchalkFRey Marketing. She holds the APR designation and has been named a fellow with the Public Relations Society of America. Elaine and her spouse, Larry Sobel, live in Tucson.



Ellen Hale is vice president and director of corporate communications for The Associated Press in New York City.



Starr Bennett is self employed and living in Paulden, Ariz.

David Dykes is a business writer with The Greenville (S.C.) News.



Tomas Guillen teaches journalism at Seattle University.

Mark Kimble is working in the office of U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson.

Anne Fisher Segal was elected justice of the peace for Pima County in fall 2008. She and her family live in Tucson.



Jean Demboski Bayou lives in northern Virginia and works as a legal assistant. “For fun,” Jean writes, she is the president of the Songwriters Association of Washington.

Dave Eubank is a sports copy editor at the Arizona Daily Star.

Mark Jacobson is a global business ghostwriter with clients from San Francisco to Singapore. He lives in Henderson, Nev.

Keith Leighty was named night editor of the business desk at The New York Times in 2008. Keith, who has been with The Times since May 1999, has been deputy night editor of the business desk since May 2008. He lives in New York City with his spouse, Susan, and sons Keith, 18, and Joe, 15.

Miriam Morgan is the food editor for the San Francisco Chronicle.



Charles Andrews is director of sales for Quark Inc., makers of QuarkXPress, Quark Publishing Systems and other products for the professional publishing market. He lives in Westford, Mass.

Leo Banks has had All About Saguaros: Facts/ Lore/ Photos published. It features photography from Arizona Highways contributors.

Edward Bassett was appointed a superior court judge for Maricopa County in February 2008. He is currently assigned to the Family Court department in Mesa, Ariz.

Reed Flickinger is the editor of West Hawaii Today. He lives in Kealakekua, Hawaii.

Nancy Mueller Groves is a freelance healthcare journalist in Lawrenceville, Ga.

Ernest Sotomayor is the assistant dean for career services at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

Stephen Yozwiak retired in August 2008 from the Arizona Republic, where he spent 28 years as a reporter, photographer and editor. A week later he took a new position as a senior science writer for the Phoenix-based non-profit Translational Genomics Research Institute.

Robert Zucker is the online publisher of Entertainment Magazine in Tucson.



William Betterton is a news editor at the Arizona Daily Star.

Charles Halnan runs his own government relations firm in Sacramento. He writes that he’s “still trying to scratch out a living in the broke and broken state of California. I’m friends with some of the few surviving Capitol beat news writers and we compare work horror stories over food and grog. That said, it’s great to be alive with a roof over my head and most of my parts still working. Every day is a gift!”



Bobbie Jo Buel was elected president of The Associated Press Managing Editors Association in 2008. She’s the executive editor of the Arizona Daily Star.

Kathleen Donaghy is a usability analyst with SAGE. She lives in Fairfax, Va.



Matt Laughlin works in marketing and lives in Castaic, Calif., with his spouse, Laura Diamond Laughlin ’79.

Lisa Wrenn is the assistant managing editor of features for the Bay Area Newsgroup-East Bay, which publishes 11 dailies including the Oakland Tribune and the Contra Costa Times. She and her spouse live in Walnut Creek. Lisa has two daughters and a stepson.

Pat Zapor is still reporting at Catholic News Service, mostly on federal government, but in the last few years covering immigration a great deal. A series of articles she wrote in 2007 on people affected by current immigration policies won an Eileen Egan Award from Catholic Relief Services. Writes Pat: “The prize for that is always a trip to someplace CRS operates. In this case, that was Peru, where we visited assorted aid and development programs for kids and for residents of an area devastated by pollution from a toxic smelter operation. Fortunately they also took us to Machu Picchu, or our images of Peru would have been sadly one-sided. More recently, I got to visit Cuba in 2008 with some American bishops, where an unplanned feature of our trip was an up-close and personal experience of Hurricane Ike, one of four to hit Cuba last season. Watching hurricane recovery in a country where civil defense is well integrated, but their tools are primarily machetes and horse-drawn carts, was fascinating. Getting story information out in hurricane-hit cities where the electricity wasn't quite back on and Internet access is always unavailable to most of the population was a fine adventure with the creativity of Cubans. But it worked.”



Carol Ann Bassett has a new book that’s been published titled GALAPAGOS AT THE CROSSROADS: Pirates, Biologists, Tourists, and Creationists Battle for Darwin’s Cradle of Evolution. She teaches environmental writing and literary nonfiction at the University of Oregon, and heads an on-going study abroad program in the Galapagos.

Joni Hirsch Blackman is currently splitting her time between freelance reporting and writing two books: one called Downtown Naperville, an "Images of America" book, which includes photos chronicling the history of her hometown, and the other a biography on George Clooney. The latter is part of a series of celebrity biographies marketed to high school and college libraries. It’s due to be published in December 2009. Joni also is launching a new web site, in conjunction with the books' debut, and plan to begin cul-de-sacs (her former newspaper column) again, perhaps as an empty nester blog.

Christie Schmitt Coombs is a freelance correspondent for the Patriot Ledger and the Boston Globe. Christie, whose spouse was killed Sept. 11 when his American Airlines flight crashed into the World Trade Center, has received accolades for her 9-11 coverage and been honored nationally as a single mom.

Elizabeth McCorkle Cooper married Bruce Gilbert on Aug. 15, 2008. She’s of counsel with Dell Financial Services. They live in Round Rock, Texas.

John Hudak has been with Madden Media in Tucson for 21 years. In that time he’s helped grow the company from five employees and one local magazine to 105 employees, 16 magazines and projects in more than 30 states.

Sam Stanton is a senior reporter of the Sacramento Bee, where he’s worked since 1991.



Ann Farver Norton accompanied her surgeon/spouse and a medical team to HEAL AFRICA Hospital in the Democratic Republic of Congo in April 2008. An hour after arriving, a Congolese airliner crashed nearby and doctors were put to work immediately. Ann says she and two other volunteers did PTSD counseling and visited with AIDS patients and rape victims. It was, Ann writes, “a somber experience.”

Ellen Ettinger Nusbaum owns Springboard Content & Publishing, a network of approximately 30 professional learning designers who create online course materials for academia, career and corporate learning. She’s also a handwriting analyst, writes and publishes how-to books and is a board member of the Scottsdale International Film Festival. Her daughter has been accepted to the UA Honors College.

Susan Welker Turley recently retired from the U.S. Air Force as a lieutenant colonel. She’s now with the Air Force's Legal Information Technology division as a contract-law attorney. She lives in Millbrook, Ala.




James Dyer is vice president of sales for Digital Media Communications. The company creates video ads from newspaper classified and display ads. He lives in North Augusta, S.C.

Dave Ord is a sports copy editor at the Arizona Daily Star.

Bill Walsh is the copy desk chief for national and foreign news at The Washington Post.



Fran Marian has published her second novel, The Chinese Silk, a sequel to The Rug Broker (Red Hills Press 2006). The novels feature Nora Reardon, a Philadelphia-based Oriental rug broker who successfully brokers hand-woven rugs from Turkey's rural weaving villages but flounders dangerously with her young son. Fran lives in Tucson.

Dan Shearer was named editor of the Green Valley News and Sahuarita Sun in January 2009. He had been with the Arizona Republic since 1987.

Jeanette Wah-Duffy is a copy editor/page designer at the Arizona Daily Star.



Michael Downs lives in Baltimore, where he is a professor of nonfiction and fiction writing at Towson University and an award-winning novelist.

Stephanie Castillo Samoy works with Guideposts Books in New York City.



Janis Vetter Leibold is an assistant editor at the Fibromyalgia Network, a journal funded by members that offers resources for patients with the chronic, painful condition.

Josh Moss is the editor of, the national business news Web site that recently switched from being a Conde Nast publication to an American City Business Journals publication. Both companies are part of the Advance Publications family. He lives in New York City.



Andrea Esquer started at ASU Law School in fall 2008. She served as the press secretary for Arizona’s attorney general for four and a half years “before drinking the Kool Aid, and deciding to become a lawyer,” she writes.

Arthur Patterson is the production manager for Stanford Business, the alumni magazine of Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. He lives in San Francisco.



Sheri Marshall Siwek is a high school English and journalism teacher in Phoenix.

Martin Rosales is an editorial writer at the Arizona Daily Star.




Jeri Sullivan Carlile is retired and living in Sierra Vista, Ariz.

Tony Gordon is an attorney in the Chicago area.

Marianne Rittner-Holmes retired in August 2008 from ITT Educational Services. She and her spouse live in Belen, N.M.



Philanne Burke, after starting at Pima Community College’s media relations department, was named executive assistant to the chancellor in 1997 and in 2005 became executive director of the as-yet unformed PCC Alumni Association. She’s on several community boards, including Reach Out and Read and the Public Relations Society of America Tucson chapter.

Anne Fulton-Cavett was one of 220 nominees selected for the “40 Under 40” honor awarded by the Arizona Daily Star. The award recognizes young leaders in Tucson who excel in their careers and community service. Anne is an attorney with Cavett & Fulton, P.C.

Paula Johnston Kelso is a copy editor at The Washington Post. She lives in Arlington, Va.

Bill Kircos is the director of media relations and lead communications manager for social media outreach at Intel Corp. in Phoenix.



Glenn Cook is an editorial writer for the Las Vegas Review Journal.

Kristen Cook is the assistant features editor for the Arizona Daily Star.



Gawain Douglas is the design and production manager at Learning A-Z, an educational publishing company. He worked at the Tucson Citizen from 2003 until the paper ceased print publication in spring 2009.

Mark Isenberger works in real estate asset management in Lake Balboa, Calif.

Daniel Macy is an editor for the Thompson Publishing Group in Washington, D.C.

Patrick O’Grady is a technology reporter for Phoenix Business Journal.

Kevin Rademacher is a senior specialist in corporate communications at NV Energy, an energy company serving Nevada and parts of California.

Kimberly Abram Sguera is an online marketing consultant in Klamath Falls, Ore.

Matt Wixon had a book on stay-at-home vacations published in 2009. The Great American Staycation draws its inspiration from Matt’s three kids, he says, who are the reason why he and his spouse can’t afford vacations. Matt also is a writer and columnist for the Dallas Morning News.




Azhar Abdul-Salam is a lecturer in the Media Studies Department at Nanyang Polytechnic in Singapore.

Jeff Gifford is the news editor at the Reno Gazette Journal.

Rob Mayeda is a meteorologist, reporter and multimedia producer for KNTV, an NBC affiliate in the Bay area.

Eddie North-Hager is a media representative for the University of Southern California. He also has created two hometown online newspapers -- and -- for areas in LA that North-Hager feels are being neglected by mainstream media. The online sites contain news, blogs, events and video of neighborhood happenings.

Rachel Ochoa-Tafoya is a public school guidance counselor at Ernie Pyle Middle School. She and her spouse live in Albuquerque.



Tremaine Jasper got married in August 2008. He and his spouse, Kearya, live in Phoenix, where Tremaine is a corporate writer and editor for Goodwill of Central Arizona. He also administers, which dubs itself “the online hot spot for African Americans in the Valley of the Sun.”

Tilly Shields Lavenas is the editor and publisher of Around Lyme, a newspaper covering news and events in the Lyme Regis area of Dorset, England. “I always wanted my own newspaper ever since I worked on El Independiente,” wrote Tilly.



Trigie Ealey has been a copy editor with the Army Times Publishing Company since September 2007. She lives in Arlington, Va., with her husband and toddler son. She and her husband are active in Capitol Cats, the University of Arizona Alumni Association's Washington, D.C., chapter.

Joao Freitas is living in Sunnyvale, Calif., where he is an account manager for Netgear.

Stanley Newman is retired and enjoying his four grandchildren. He lives in New York City.

Elizabeth Nida is a staff photographer at the Rochester (Minn.) Post-Bulletin and planning a 2009 wedding. Check out her photography at


Todd Hardy is an attorney in Tucson.

Jim Thornby produces “The Final Score” on Fox Sports Net. He lives in Los Angeles.



Matt Minton is a producer for Anderson Cooper 360 at CNN’s World Headquarters in Atlanta.




Joe Altman accepted a new position with The Associated Press that brought him back to Phoenix at the end of June. He is an editor on the AP's new West Regional Desk, where he helps handle all the general news from AP's 13- state Western region. Joe also serves as a business news liaison for the regional desk, coordinating Western bureaus' coverage of business- related stories with the Business News Department in New York.

Mary Brandenberger works in the press office at the Federal Election Commission in Washington, D.C.

Susan Carroll is an immigration reporter for the Houston Chronicle.



Nicole Acorn Crites is anchor of the morning and noon shows on KPHO-TV, the CBS affiliate in Phoenix.

Kristen Roberts Johnson is living in Sanger, Calif. She and her spouse are parents to three children. A fourth was due in March 2009. Kristen was the assistant editor at the Catholic Sun in Phoenix and also spent time working as a paralegal in Tucson and Phoenix.



LaMonica Everett-Haynes presented a paper at the American Sociological Association convention in San Francisco Aug. 10, 2009. LaMonica worked on the paper, “Converging Realities and Identities: A Case Study of African American and Hispanic Students Negotiating Self-Actualized Duality,” with her adviser, Regina Deil-Amen. LaMonica’s working on her master’s in higher education at the UA and plans to pursue her Ph.D. as well. She’s a news manager in the UA’s Office of University Communications.



Brittany Manson Dworman is an injury claims adjuster for The Hartford Insurance Company. She and her family live in West Hartford, Conn.

Janis Gallego is an associate attorney with Tucson’s Mesch Clark & Rothschild’s business, employment, construction and litigations sections.

John Kamin resigned as web editor at the Prescott (Arizona) Daily Courier to become the legal editor at WorkCompCentral, a workers' compensation news service. John says he surfs through countless court opinions and writes about the latest published decisions in the world of workers' compensation. He lives one mile away from the beach in Oxnard, Calif., and frequently golfs with fellow Wildcats. John also is attending the Ventura College of Law with plans to pursue a career in civil law.

Adrienne Mackey co-hosts the KLPX morning show on 96.1 FM in Tucson.

Eric Swedlund left the Arizona Daily Star in 2008 to join the staff of U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.



Joe Mazzeo is the tournament manager with the Greg Norman Production Co. in Naples, Fla.

Irene Fischler McKisson is the night sports editor at the Arizona Daily Star.

Dave Roberts became the Farmington bureau reporter for KOAT-TV in northwestern New Mexico in February 2008.

Jackie Allgeier Ryan is a seventh- and eighth-grade English teacher at Hull Middle School in Torrance, Calif. She teaches English, a writer's workshop for struggling readers and writers and is the adviser for the school newspaper, The Hawk Swoop. In addition to teaching, Jackie is on her way to a master’s degree in curriculum development and instruction from Cal State Long Beach. She hopes to use her new degree in a district as a curriculum developer or as a instructor for new teachers who are just putting their ideas to use. Jackie is recently married to a graphic designer, Shawn Ryan, and is living in El Segundo, Calif.



Andrea Aker owns Aker Ink Public Relations in Scottsdale.

Aaron Cowman is a freelance TV producer and editor in Tucson.

Jennifer Karlman is an anchor with WBAY in Green Bay, Wis.

Saul Loeb is based in Washington, D.C., as a staff photographer for Agence France-Presse, covering the White House.

Lorraine Rivera is the morning anchor for KVOA-TV, the Tucson NBC affiliate.

Daniel Scarpinato became editor of the Yellow Sheet Report, a subscription, Web-based, daily newsletter covering politics and government, on Sept. 1, 2009. He most recently covered politics for the Arizona Daily Star.

Shelley Shelton was promoted in October to a newly created hybrid reporting/copy editing position in the regional bureau of the Arizona Daily Star. She covers Marana, southern Pinal County, Avra Valley Fire and Northwest Fire for the Northwest section and copy edits the Foothills section of the paper. Both come out on Thursdays.

Kevin Smith is a music writer at the Arizona Daily Star, specializing in pop, rock, and hip-hop music.



Alex Chihak is a copy editor and designer at the Amarillo (Texas) Globe-News.

Victor Garcia works for Fox News on the O'Reilly Factor as an associate producer.

Mary Euler married Mark Kaech on April 26, 2008. She has been working in marketing communications for Food for the Hungry, an international relief and development organization, for two years. The couple lives in Phoenix.

Andrea Kelly covers transportation for the Arizona Daily Star. She lives in Tucson with her spouse, Will Seberger.

Abigail Kesling lives in La Porte, Ind., and works in advertising for ABC/CW television stations.

Laurie Laine is a freelance journalist living in Tucson.

Laura Rillos is a reporter at KVAL-TV, the CBS affiliate in Eugene, Ore.



Adrienne Alvarez is a reporter and fill-in anchor for KTSM-TV, the NBC affiliate in El Paso.

Leslie Brennan is an advertising executive with Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners in New York City.

Zach Colick has been a news editor and reporter for the Paradise Valley Independent since December 2007.

Stephanie Corriero teaches third grade in Toltec, Ariz.

Julie Fertig is a reporter for News 14 Carolina, a 24-hour news channel covering North Carolina.

Aaron Gudenkauf lives in Tucson and is a digital media specialist for the American Board of Radiology.

Dean Knuth is a photojournalist for the Arizona Daily Star, where he’s worked as a freelancer since his sophomore year at the UA.

Natalia Lopera is a reporter for La Estrella, the weekly Spanish publication of the Arizona Daily Star.

Aaron Mackey left a position in summer 2009 covering higher education for the Arizona Daily Star to attend law school at the University of San Francisco.

James Patrick has been accepted into the American Society of Media Photographers and placed on the board of directors for the Tucson chapter. He also received the "Up & Comers" award for 2008 from Inside Tucson Business and was accepted into a division of the American Advertising Federation for professionals under the age of 31. James is a marketing coordinator at Stantec in Tucson.

Lisa Rich was the co-author on a three-day series that ran in The Times (Trenton, N.J.) in December 2008 on lead paint usage in city housing. Read it here. She has covered news, education and, most recently, entertainment for The Times.

Andrea Rivera covers four Tucson-area school districts and charter and private schools on the Northwest side of town for the Arizona Daily Star.

Nicholas Smith is a reporter with Inside Tucson Business.

Victoria Tinajero joined ABC15-TV in Phoenix in June 2009.



Jeanie Bergen won an Emmy award from the Rocky Mountain Southwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Oct. 4, 2008. Bergen won in the category “Magazine Program – Program/Special” for her work writing and producing “The Beat,” which airs on Tucson 12. She also got married in April 2009.

Carrie Bui is writing and editing articles for Oser Communications in Tucson.

Ryan Casey is a sports reporter and online editor at Ahwatukee Foothills News outside of Phoenix.

Victoria Harben has launched Jargon Media LLC, a company providing proofing and editing services for students. The company has offices in Albuquerque and the United Kingdom. Visit its Web site.

Nick Izzo has created a race news Web site,

Jason Kleinman is a production assistant at the NFL Network in Culver City, Calif. He works on the programs “NFL Total Access,” “NFL Gameday” and “NFL Replay.”



Alexis Bechman is a reporter at the Payson Roundup.

Jamie Blanchard joined the Amateur Softball Association of America National Office in Oklahoma City as the coordinator of marketing and communications on June 1, 2009. She oversees the ASA and USA Softball Web sites, and assists in marketing and communication initiatives. She had interned with the U.S. Olympic Committee’s communications department in Colorado Springs, Colo., and the media relations and publications division of USA Volleyball prior to joining ASA.

Kelli Hart is the Laguna Beach reporter for the Orange County Register. She covers crime, education, art, entertainment and city government and contributes to a front-page feature called “The Morning Read.”

Jeffrey Javier is covering education for the West Valley bureau of The Arizona Republic.

Laura Ory spent the last two years as a reporter at the Sierra Vista Herald. She’s now relocating to Phoenix.

Katie Ryan is covering southern New Mexico for KOB-TV in Albuquerque.

Jennifer Tramm is volunteering as editor-in-chief of a children’s newspaper called Chelsea’s Beacon that a non-profit foundation is attempting to launch. She and her family live in Tucson.



Molly Silver is working at a public relations firm in Los Angeles.

Chelsea Jo Simpson accepted a position as marketing manager at the Association of University Research Parks in Tucson.

In Memoriam

Christopher Garifo '88 -- Feb. 2, 2009. Copy editor and writer for newspapers in Arizona and New York.

John Haney '62 -- Feb. 20, 2009. Longtime journalist with The Arizona Republic, Associated Press, New York Times News Service and a published novelist.

Margaret Mary Nichols '40 -- March 22, 2009. Former Wildcat reporter and basketball player at a time when women athletes weren't recognized.

Lanny Rosenbaum '65 -- Oct. 26, 2009. Former Wildcat editor who spent many years in the printing/publishing business.

Merigay Finnerty Sotomayor '67 -- July 18, 2009. Former Wildcat editor, book editor in Tokyo, environmental researcher in Beverly Hills and writer for the L.A. Recreation and Parks Department. Was also instrumental when the journalism department was targeted for closure in the mid-199s with reversing that decision.

Maria Teresa "Tess" Martinez '09 -- June 1, 2009. Student in the School of Journalism killed in a one-car accident; awarded her degree posthumously. Active in the National Association of Hispanic Journalists with hopes of pursuing a career with alternative media.

Stephen E. Emerine -- Feb. 13, 2009. Tucson journalist, commentator, and longtime faculty member in the UA School of Journalism.

Donovan Kramer Sr. -- Oct. 25, 2009. Longtime Arizona newspaper publisher and member of the School of Journalism Advisory Council.