2015 – Spring ’23 Class Letter

Ripon people! A bunch of us turned, or are about to, turn 30 this year, and so I’ve been thinking about 3. Numerology is definitely pseudoscience (Don’t worry, I’m not turning on my psych minor.), but it still got me thinking. And singing “3, It’s a Magic Number” while running today. So here are 3 ideas on the number 3 before you carry on with the rest of your day (or just skip ahead to the updates, whichever).

1: Quality of life matters a lot more than quantity. Hopefully we’ve all hit the human essentials of food, water, shelter, and warmth, so we can start thinking about quality, too. What does that look like to you? Each person has their own definitions and resources. If you haven’t “made it”, if you want to, can something be changed? Maybe, maybe not. I’m a big believer in making little waves of growth, such as stretching before/after exercise, attempting meditation, and remembering to drink water. Stay hydrated, y’all!

2: Can you give yourself 2-3 hours of uninterrupted work? This work doesn’t have to be for a paycheck, it could also mean service work, working out, creative work, working on your dating profile, or some other definition. Choose your own (work) adventure. Maybe it’s the Montessori environment I’ve been exposed to the last couple years, but my 2-3 hour work cycles have given clarity and confidence. Instagram, Slack, and even email will still be there when you get back. Trust me on this. Turn off the notifications and get to work.

3: If you can’t figure out what to do, in your work, relationships (even the one with yourself), or leisure time, take a note from some influencers, and try the 2 minute rule. In the spirit of that magic number 3, I’ll give you 1 more minute. In concept, the 2-3 minute rule is simple enough: If you can get something done in this timeframe, just get ‘er done. Don’t let it become yet another thing on the to-do list. I’ve added another minute so you can procrastinate or figure out what that item is. You got this. Go do that thing!

And so, whether you’re turning 30, 32, or 54 this year, I wish you quality of life, good work, and discernment of what to do or not do (as Yoda said). Of course, being a good person is a mighty, noble start. And onto the best part of the letter, the updates from some very good people, our classmates.

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

Class Updates

KATIE BIEDLER ‘15 is making magic, or rather, tea. After years of preferring coffee, she has learned all sorts of steeping techniques, such as the benefits of owning a simple electric kettle.

ELLE DAVIS ‘15 is becoming a real-life Elle Woods and writes, “I survived my first semester of law school and even found a little time to still ride at 3 Gaits! Trevor and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary. I also made my first ever on the record appearance at the defense table in Milwaukee Circuit Court… as a student observer! Currently contemplating what clinic to do next year and thinking it might be time to buy a pink blazer…”

BRISTOLLE RYFF COSTELLO ‘15 married her best friend, Mike Costello, on September 30, 2022. They are enjoying their first year of marriage and can’t wait for their honeymoon to Playa Del Carmen, Mexico in June.

PETER HAYES ‘15 got engaged in October and will be getting married in August. He started a new position back in January at Envestnet, where he’s been for six years. Peter is now an Investment Specialist. He completed his MBA program this spring at DePaul University and is very grateful to be done with school. 

SAM KAY ‘15 celebrated six years at her job as Global Outreach Manager for the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy. She is finally traveling internationally again with trips planned for Montreal and Brussels. In December, she celebrated her 30th birthday by flipping her cake in the air and successfully catching it. If you don’t know what that means, search #cakeflip.

CHRISTIAN KRUEGER ‘15 is continuing her PhD in Early American History at Marquette University and was recently named a Filson Fellow at Louisville’s Filson Historical Society. She looks forward to spending March in Kentucky, including archival work at the Filson and presenting her paper, “My Old Kentucky Home: Race and Power on Bluegrass Horse Farms,” at the Living with Animals conference at Eastern Kentucky University.

MICHAEL LANPHIER ‘15 and JOHANNA BURTON LANPHIER ‘13 are pregnant with their first child! They are due in July.

EMILY FISCHER LENSMIRE ‘15 and her husband, Sam, welcomed twins, Bennett and Lucy, into the world on June 5, 2022.

KAYLIE LONGLEY ‘15 is listening to AOC’s mantra to “take up space”, and so she is showing up as her energetic, enthusiastic self, on social media feeds, in meetings, and while trail-running. She’s marketing Montessori School of Denver (where she is quite literally code-switching between CSS and Canva), coaching Girls on the Run, watching dogs, supporting PawsCo, occasionally freelance editing, and sharing book research, goals progress, and creative spotlights on kaylielongley.com.

KATIE JO HEATH MCGEE ‘15 is finishing her teaching gig in China, then will head to Alaska for a new teaching role, starting this May.

BRIAN KOLLATZ ‘14 and EMILY MENGERT ‘15 moved back to Wisconsin and bought a house in Appleton.

MADDIE POULLETTE ‘15 will marry her fiance, Peter, on June 24, 2023.

BRIAN SCHUMACHER ‘15 and KATIE DREW SCHUMACHER ‘14 celebrated the birth of their second child in January, Natalie Elizabeth Schumacher.

LAURA SHIVELY ‘15 was promoted to Auntie Laura back in August with the birth of SUSIE SHIVELY CONDON ‘17’s first child. In October, Laura and her husband, Ryne, eloped. In February, they celebrated the one year anniversary of moving into their home. Laura is proud to have read 108 books in 2022 and looks forward to crushing her “to be read” pile this year. 

JOHN SPADONI ‘15 and KRISTY OGLESBY SPADONI ‘15 bought a house in Whitewater, Wisconsin. They are enjoying their big backyard space with plenty of room for Izzy and Bruce to roam.

SYDNEY CHURCH VAN TREECK ‘15 and AUSTIN VAN TREECK ‘14 welcomed their first child, Everett, into the world in August.

CASEY VERTCAUTEREN ‘15 will be traveling to Europe for the first time this year. He’s looking forward to visiting Hungary.

ROB WATERS ‘15 and KAMELLE VAN DER LEEST WATERS ‘15 celebrated their son Theodore’s first birthday in October 2022. They attended the Alumni Track & Field Meet in January 2023 and are planning to do so next year. Save the date for January 13, 2024. Kamelle is now a Grievance and Appeals Coordinator at Dean Health plan in Madison, putting her back in the office every day. Most days she enjoys being back to “normal”, but on the bad weather days she misses remote work.


Kaylie ‘15

Sam ‘15

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!