2009 Spring ’23 Class Letter

Greetings Classmates,

We hope this letter finds you well. We have a couple exciting updates from classmates we want to highlight:

MATT BIWER ‘09 finished his PhD in archaeology at the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2019. He is now an Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Archaeology at Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA where he lives with his wife, KORINE VIERTHALER BIWER ‘09.

Way to go, Matthew! We look forward to future updates and hearing some fun stories from your time in the classroom. 

BRYAN NELL ‘09 of Green Lake, WI: “I grew up in St. Germain, Wisconsin before heading to Ripon College (Ripon, WI) to get my A.B. degree in chemistry in 2009. I did my graduate work at the University of Oregon (Eugene, OR) in the lab of David Tyler, earning my Ph.D. in 2014. My dissertation research focused on the synthesis of tetraphosphine macrocycles and their corresponding coordination chemistry, mostly focused on iron. After graduate school, I stayed in Eugene and taught chemistry at Oregon, teaching general chemistry and organic chemistry. I also taught some classes at local community colleges, as well as, Oregon State University. In 2016, I started a postdoctoral fellowship in the lab of Rebecca Abergel at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory working on preparing sulfur-based analogs of the HOPO-type molecules that are well known to capture radio nuclei. After this, I moved to the University of Minnesota Morris as an assistant professor in the chemistry discipline. In 2022, I moved to Ripon College to continue teaching at my alma mater! In my free time, I love to golf, do woodworking projects, and be outside with my wife, daughter, and pups.”

Congrats, Bryan!  We look forward to watching you impact future Redhawks and serving Ripon College as a member of the faculty. 

ELLIS BOSVELD ’10 shares: “It has been awhile since I’ve sent in an update and there is a lot to share. In early 2020, Ellis took a leap of faith and started working as a full time missionary with ReachGlobal Crisis Response, working on long term recovery sites across the nation. He moved to coastal North Carolina in the wake of Hurricane Florence. There, he met his wife, Kristen, and married on 2/22/22. He now has a 5-year-old bonus daughter and they are excited to welcome a baby to the family this July!”

Awesome news, Ellis!  Thanks for updating us, and best of luck on your expanding family. 

Some updates from Emily and Josh:

EMILY MEYER ‘09 continues her work in Residence Life and maintaining the chaos of her house. Last fall, Lily (age 7) was cast in the Fargo Moorhead Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker where she made her ballet stage debut as a mouse. Lily will dance this spring in the FM Ballet’s production of Peter Pan where she’ll continue her animal roles and dance as a fish (how does a fish dance you may ask….I have no idea). Emily’s husband, STEPHEN KENNELLY ‘98, returned from his fifth deployment in November and they’ve been readjusting to having him home full time after three and a half years of military school and work.

JOSH LEGREVE ‘09 is still working as a Spanish Teacher and International Baccalaureate Diploma Program Coordinator for Green Lake Schools. This last fall, his conference presentation “Lenses of Culture: Addressing Culture at the Novice Level” was named Best of Wisconsin by the Wisconsin Association for Language Teachers. He will have the opportunity to present this session at the regional Central States Conference in Columbus, Ohio, this March.

There are some exciting events happening at Ripon in the coming months; please join us if you’re in the area or are willing to travel!

April 22, 2023 – Inauguration of President Victoria Folse
Information and updates available here: Inauguration | Ripon College
June 22-25, 2023 – Alumni Weekend

Alumni Weekend is coming up quickly! This year, it is June 22-25, 2023. Below you can find information if you are planning to attend.

The College is three hours north of Chicago, and served by airports in Milwaukee (a two-hour drive from Ripon), Madison (a 1.5 hour drive), and Appleton (a 45 minute drive). Milwaukee offers the most frequent service. From the Milwaukee, Madison, Chicago and Appleton airports guests may choose to rent a car. Ripon is served by taxi to and from the Appleton airport.

Room Blocks:
Heidel House (Green Lake) – Book online here
Cobblestone Suites (Ripon) – Book by calling 920.748.5500
Don’t forget: Our 15-year class reunion will take place June 20-23, 2024. Mark your calendar!

Watch for more information on our class Facebook group. If you aren’t in the group, let us know!

While we have another year (plus a little) until our 15th College Reunion (we refuse to think it has been that long), the time will soon come when we’ll be looking for volunteers to help with reunion planning. Reunion planning members are generally asked to be at a couple virtual meetings or phone calls in the time leading up to reunion to assist with selecting a location and a few other logistics, and then be present if possible at Alumni Weekend. It is a low-commitment way to give back to the college and reconnect with friends. If you’d like to know more, feel free to reach out to either Emily or Josh, or AMY GABRIEL GERRETSEN ‘04 in the Alumni Office ([email protected]), for more information or to volunteer.

As always, please feel free to share updates with us at any point.


Emily ‘09

Josh ‘09

P.S. There will be a special giving event in conjunction with inauguration weekend, April 20-23, to celebrate Ripon’s 14th President, Victoria N. Folse, and the exciting momentum happening within our campus community. This event will be an extension of the #OneDayRally brand and experience. Stay tuned for more information. We look forward to your participation!