1989–Fall ’18 Class Letter


Nikki Zens Lindberg

[email protected]

Mitch Rosin

[email protected]

Dear Class of 1989 (and Riff Raff),


By the time you get this, Erik and I will have sent our first kid off to college. I know many of you have already gone through this experience, and, wow, how things have changed since our Ripon days. Her path is leading her to a big university (Michigan State), whereas both Erik and I, like you, sought something a wee bit smaller. Despite all the differences, we hope she will emerge with great friends, a love a learning, and a lifetime of memories. As a “last hurrah” we are doing a family trip to France (as you may have seen on Facebook).


As for Mitch, he continues to travel almost 100% of the time, and surprises us all with random mini Ripon reunions around the globe.


Congrats to all of you who have also experienced milestones, such as graduations, babies and grandbabies, weddings (your kids or your own) and more. I also know we all face challenges: death of friends or family, loss of a job, health concerns, etc. The support and encouragement, pride and love, that we give to each other reminds us of the importance of nurturing those friendships and connections. We are all in this together, and together we can get through anything.


Mark your calendars for our 30th (not a typo) reunion, June 27-30, 2019. We will be hitting you up for ideas and such on Facebook for what you’d like to see happen. Not on FB? Drop Mitch or I an email, text, call or even postcard. Hope to see you all in Ripon…or maybe a beach in Mexico (as Mitch is pushing hard for a “destination reunion”).




“Travel changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life — and travel — leaves marks on you. Most of the time, those marks – on your body or on your heart — are beautiful. Often, though, they hurt.” Anthony Bourdain




TODD BAKER ’89 writes, “Would someone please tell Doc Emrick to stop adding an extra “a” to Vrana….”


DAVE BARZYK ’89 writes, “An open game. Anyone, anyone? Chris?”


TRICIA POTTER BAUER ’89 writes, “I still live in the heart of Amish Country, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Not much to report that’s new. Well just one thing. I shaved my head as a participant in a fundraising event for St Baldrick’s Foundation and surpassed our goal (with husband and 11-year-old son) of raising money for childhood cancer research. 



MICHELLE BROWN-DROESE ’89 writes, “I started teaching in the the graduate program at Simmons College School of Business.”


AMY WALDER CARRINGTON ’89 writes, “I was kind of hoping for James, William or David, but Louis works. Now I will be singing Louis Prima’s “I Wan’Na Be Like You” the rest of the morning.”


KRISTA CALHOUN CASPER ’89 writes, “Instapot friends!! Try this and let me know the results! (thewoksoflife.com/2018/06/instant-pot-soy-sauce-chicken/)”


TOBI CAWTHRA ’89 writes, “We welcomed two kitties into the house this week. In less than 24 hours, they were claiming us as their people and getting in some serious snuggling.”


SCOTT CHAMBERS ’89 writes, “I still work for the University of Connecticut with the main duty of training new Department of Social Services staff in programs and the eligibility system. I enjoy spending 2+ months getting to know the new staff. Most of my time is spent with the kids. I coach Libby’s softball team. She’s also competing in AAU Gymnastics and we are going to Tampa at end of June for Nationals! My son Wyatt recently got his black belt! Our family enjoys amusement parks and we spend as much time as possible at Six Flags New England and Lake Compounce. The only issue is that I’ve gotten older and can’t ride rides that spin but have no problem with any roller coaster. Go figure.”


ERIKA DAVISON-AVILES ’89 writes, “I was waiting for my flight home and I fly through O’Hare all the time…just noticed everyone carrying a small mint green bag with “Garrett” on the bag. I’m always in a rush when at this airport and suddenly I see practically everyone with a Garrett bag. What is so amazing about the popcorn? Well I tried my very first Garrett mix and have to say I’m in love!! Wasn’t sure what all the fuss was about but have to say that when eating the popcorn mix the ratio of one carmel to two cheese is pure HEAVEN! #popcornvirginnomore


And I’m a newlywed.”


GIGI HICKS DECKER ’89 writes, “Adventures on the way home from Colorado. This place is one of those hidden gems. And I don’t care what’s in it, I think SPAM is tasty!! #spammuseum”


PAUL DONALDSON ’89 writes, “I’m watching the view from the tractor tonight. Some moments you simply have to stop what you’re doing and take in the beauty.”


JODI GIBSON ’89 is currently the “Zoological Society President and Chief Executive Officer…The Zoological Society of Milwaukee went public Thursday with a $25 million capital campaign to fund the new Adventure Africa complex at the Milwaukee County Zoo. The campaign has raised more than $16.7 million to date toward that goal, thanks to lead gifts from the Dohmen Family Foundation, Holz Family Foundation, Ladish Family Foundation and MillerCoors during the quiet phase of the campaign”


SCOTTIE NICHOLS GIROUARD ’89  writes, “Casey graduated cum laude from Ripon College. Her aunt, SUSAN FRIKKEN ’90 says, ‘I am so proud and honored to have been there. To share my beloved alma mater and her life journey! Love you, Casey!’”


LISA STEIN GOLDMAN ’89 writes, “I chose to write nothing, because that’s what I do.”


JULIE TAYLOR GONDAR ’89 writes, “In 2017 I was a founding member and President of the Democratic Women of Kendall County. Our group was instrumental in bringing state candidates to our county to speak for the first time in decades. Kendall has long been a Republican stronghold, but our presence helped turn Kendall blue. During the March primaries Democrats outvoted Republicans for the first time ever. On April 18th I was elected Democratic County Chair in Kendall County, Illinois. It was another historic first, as this was the first time that a woman has chaired the county party. In fact, all officers elected to the county party in April were women.  #BGSD”


KRIS PEHLE GRASSE ’89 writes,”I still love teaching second graders. Both daughters are out of college and each of them is taking on the world in her own way.”


BEN GUZMAN ’89 writes, “Have I told you how much I hate spiders?”


RAMON GUZMAN ’89 writes, “I was very impressed last night that I could use ABBA’s song ‘Fernando’ in a joke and the Open Mic DJ could find it and play it by the end of my set – He’s good! @secondcityhollywood #secondcityhollywood #standupcomedy #canyouhearthedrumsfernando”


CHRIS HANNES ’89 writes, “I went on an awesome trip to see Carson Camilla Hannés and my family in Scotland. I also stopped by to see the Geddes family homesite. Overall great trip will be back for sure.”


PHILLIP HARTY ’89 writes, “Congratulations to the Texas Men’s Swimming and Diving team for your 4th consecutive win! Hook ‘em! And, Go Bruins!”


KATHY HAYEVSKY ’89 writes, “I started singing in a band, Audrey and the Cool Cats. I’m obviously not Audrey, but I AM one of the “cool” cats.”


MARC HEALY ’89 writes, “I’ve been getting solicitations for ‘Senior living’ options.”


LORI KOMETER ’89 writes, “A good friend of mine opened his own business to help people with divorce, parental alienation, and conflict. He is very talented…. Check it out! www.facebook.com/michaelallencoaching/


DAVID LUONGO ’89 writes, “I was not aware of how amazingly screwed up the California primary process is… this makes the electoral college seem reasonable by comparison. I just watched the first episode of Killing Eve. Very interesting… hope they explain how Sandra Oh’s American accented character ended up at MI5 but overall I was impressed.”


ANNE BURCHMORE MIES ’89 writes, “I am spending time at my tiny cottage in northern Wisconsin, visiting family in Taos, and enjoying my new apartment in downtown Minneapolis. C’est la vie.”


BARB THOMPSON PAMPERIN ’89 writes, “I am taking a summer class with Brian Smith and Martyn Smith of Lawrence College on Billy Graham and the evangelical movement. Otherwise, same job, same address.”


ANDREW PETERSON  ’89 writes, “Breck and Brian found 35 sharks teeth on an island in the St. John’s River this morning.”


SONEEL RAJ ’89 writes, “To all teachers!! For everything you do everyday – thank you!”


PAT  SCHMIDT ’89 writes, “I am recently remarried. I am also sending my son off to play hockey with the Gophers, and got to spend time in Europe with my daughter. Live like Wally!”


KATHRYN SCHULTZ ’89 writes, “US News and World Report survey reported that I live in the 6th healthiest community in the nation. The city where I go to church is number 1. I’m hoping I can get some of it to rub off on me…”


TRACY UNGER ’89 writes, “Oh Chicago, how I love you. But, I’m happy to be back in Nashville after a combo fun and work trip. I got a bonus night because of thunderstorms. Really, though, Chicago sucks. Sorry Cubs fans, but you suck, too.”


GARY VANDERMOLEN JR. ’89 writes, “The more he grew, the more like a bear he looked.”


SCOTT WARMKA ’88 writes, “I’m still a little in shock. Twins Win! And no 9th inning closer drama.”


BARB WHITSTONE ’89 writes, “I have no more crutches and the ortho cleared me to ride 🙂 I won’t jump for awhile, so hopefully I can sweet talk Emma to keep working with Brix… I’m so happy to have this behind me and grateful for Emma and Sara for keeping Brix going!”