Class Notes

Here's recent news from Jewell alumni. Send us your update via our Class Notes Submission Form.


Mary Lou (Riggs) Palmer, ’54, reports she’s nearly 91 years old with many wonderful memories of Jewell. She lives in Fernandina Beach, Florida, with her daughter.


Dennis Bunch, ’73, retired from full-time church ministry and from teaching at Liberty North High School (Missouri). He serves as a substitute teacher at Liberty North and helps with the athletic programs.

Dr. Ollie Malone, Jr., ’75, of Plano, Texas, returned to his primary occupational passion as president of Olive Tree Associates, the organizational consulting firm he founded in 1993. For nearly seven years, he served as vice president of human resources at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.

Jeff Ross, ’79, of Winchester, Kentucky, released a new book, "Next Step Devotions" (Amazon, Kindle). The collection of 366 discipleship lessons is based on passages from every New Testament chapter followed by prompts for spiritual growth.


Dr. Jeff Buscher, ’81, received Central Seminary’s 2022 Alumni Award for Ministry Excellence. He was cited for exemplifying Central's goal of serving humanity, working for systemic change by partnering with others without regard for social, economic or faith status. Jeff serves as community impact coordinator for the United Way of Lewis & Clark Area in Helena, Montana. He earned his Doctor of Ministry at Central in 2016 while serving as Jewell's chaplain.

Byron Motley, ’81, is a producer of the documentary "The League" about the history and legacy of the Negro Baseball Leagues. The film has been accepted into the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City in June 2023 and will be released in various theaters nationwide in July and on major streaming platforms and networks, including Apple and Amazon. Motley has partnered with Academy Award winner Questlove, Mark Cuban and director Sam Pollard. The tales of Byron's late father, Bob Motley, Negro League umpire and Congressional Gold Medal Honoree, is featured in the documentary. 

Jim Kopp, ’83, received the 2023 Operator’s Meritorious Service Award from the Missouri Section of the American Water Works Association. He has dedicated his career to promoting and providing safe drinking water for the City of St. Louis Water Division, starting in 1986 as a chemist and now serving as laboratory director. 

Dr. Brad Carter, ’85, was named associate provost for outreach and engagement at the U.S. Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island.


Rob Leytham, ’90, was named the 2022-23 Liberty Schools Support Employee of the Year in recognition of his effort as the CARE (Calming and Recovery Environment) room teacher at Ridgeview Elementary School. He recently published his ninth book, “The Feeling is Bright: Self-Regulation Through Rhythm and Rhyme.” He is certified in neuro-rhythmic trauma therapy and has been interviewed on podcasts across the country about his use of drumming, rhythm and mantras to teach self-regulation and social skills to elementary school children living in trauma.

Dr. Shannon Cate, ’92, began teaching 6th-12th grade English at the Ready Program, the Illinois Region 9 alternative school. She continues coaching academic writers, editing translations into English and tutoring Japanese clients learning English.

Dr. Karen Seat, ’92, was named one of two inaugural recipients of the University of Arizona’s Distinguished Head/Director’s Award in 2022 and was conferred the title Distinguished Scholar. She is associate professor of religious studies, head of the Department of Religious Studies and Classics and director of the School of International Languages, Literatures and Cultures.

Warner Bailey, ’93, earned a Master of Music Education from the University of Missouri in December 2022. The Boonville High School vocal music teacher also received the Missouri Choral Directors Association Outstanding Director-West Central District Award in 2021.

Jerry Nixon, ’95, became a senior product manager for Microsoft SQL Server. He teaches computer science at Colorado Christian University in Denver where he and his wife Kyndall (Van Eaton) Nixon, ’95, live with their youngest daughter, Jeri Anna Jewell Nixon. He also runs one of the longest running and most successful tech events in Colorado, Denver Dev Day, for software developers.

Dr. Randy Oliver, ’97, was named principal at Joplin High School for the 2023-2024 year. He most recently served as an associate principal at Van Horn High School in Independence where he was named Missouri Assistant Principal of the Year and finalist for NASSP National Assistant Principal of the Year in 2022.

Brian Webster, ’98, was named assistant principal for Kearney Middle School for 2022-2023. He has taught math and science at the school for more than 15 years.


Dr. Brooke Whitworth, ’01, received the Outstanding Science Teacher Educator of the Year Award (Level 1: 0-10 Years Experience) from the Association of Science Teacher Education in January 2023, and in March received the National Science Teaching Association Fellow Award. Whitworth is an associate professor in science education at Clemson University. 

Dr. Martha (Ziegler) Carletti, ’03, was named the 2023 Distinguished Educator of the Year at Benedictine College (Atchison, Kansas) where she is an associate professor of biology.

Dr. Kevin Uhrich, ’05, completed his Doctor of Ministry in Worship Leadership from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City. His doctoral project was titled "Developing a discipleship methodology to equip Concord Baptist Church of the need for intergenerational worship according to biblical principles." Kevin is the associate pastor of church music and worship arts at Concord Baptist Church in Anderson, South Carolina.

Heather Jones-Brown, ’06, was promoted to the assistant chief diversity officer for staff equity at Grinnell College (Iowa). She also was awarded the President's Volunteer Service Lifetime Achievement Award for performing 4,000 hours or more unpaid acts of volunteer service.

Dr. Joshua Hastey, ’07, assistant professor in the Robertson School of Government at Regent University, had his first academic book published with Routledge Press. "China, Faits Accomplis and the Contest for East Asia: The Shadow of Shifting Power" explores China's use of faits accomplis and offers the first formal model for the use of faits accomplis by rising powers.

Shawn James, ’07, and Andrea (de Regnier) James, '07, welcomed a third daughter, Kiernan Ivy, on July 12, 2023. Shawn works as a clinical dietitian for Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas, and Andrea is an elementary music teacher for the Girard, Kansas, school district. They reside in Pittsburg, Kansas, with their two other daughters, Viola and Elsie.

Trent Figg, '08, was named Calvin University's first head football coach in 2023 as the school adds football to its lineup for competition in fall 2024. In his first stint as head coach, he has collegiate coaching experience as Southern Arkansas, Jewell, Missouri State, Hawaii and Oregon.

Vanessa (Ayers) Thomson, ’08, was the only teacher in Missouri to be named a Milken Educator by the Milken Family Foundation. The award, which includes an unrestricted $25,000 cash prize, honors early- to mid-career education professionals for their achievements. Vanessa teaches second grade in North Kansas City Schools and in 2021 was one of six Regional Teachers of the Year for Kansas City.

Scott Hopson, ’09, earned the Certified Trust and Fiduciary Advisor (CTFA) certification. He has been part of Arvest Wealth Management in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, since 2014.


Dr. Edward Scott, Jr., ’13, received the American Psychological Association Distinguished Dissertation in Qualitative Inquiry Award. He completed a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology: Applied Developmental Science at the University of Virginia and accepted a tenure-track faculty position as assistant professor of social work at the University of Houston, Graduate College of Social Work.

Chris Stathos, '14, was promoted to director of partnership development for the Kansas City Chiefs. He completed his ninth National Football League season with the Chiefs and has been with the club's partnership team since graduating from Jewell.

Hailey Hankins, ’15 and M.S.Ed. ’20, was named the Independence School District Teacher of the Year. She was selected by a panel of community members who interviewed all 29 Teachers of the Year from each school in the district. Hailey teaches 5th grade at Fairmount Elementary and is currently working on a second master’s degree in elementary math.

James Milam, ’15, has been promoted to a human capital senior consultant in Deloitte’s Government and Public Services practice. He began his career with Deloitte in 2019 after earning an MBA from William & Mary. In October 2022 he and Sara Thane were married in Montana and now reside in Nashville.

Emily Daniel, ’16, is one of 15 doctoral students selected to receive the University of Kansas’ prestigious Madison and Lila Self Graduate Fellowship, a fully-funded four-year award. She is a first-year doctoral student in biomedical science.

Gretchen Britt, ’17, has been a registered nurse for 20 years and now serves as vice president of information technology at Liberty Hospital.

2022 Class Notes

  • 1950s

    June (Tinsley) Seat, ’59, and Dr. Leroy Seat, ’59, of Liberty, were thrilled to become great-grandparents in 2022. Their son Keith Seat, ’80, and daughter-in-law Brenda (Helland) Seat, ’80, became grandparents of Vander Sage Moller-Seat in Maryland. Their daughter Kathy (Seat) Laffoon, ’82, and her husband, Tim, became grandparents of Nina Irene Hlousek in Arkansas.

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  • 1960s

    Larry Holley, ’67, received the Lifetime Achievement Award from Small College Basketball. A four-year letterwinner as a Jewell Cardinal player, Larry coached for 51 years, including 40 seasons as Jewell’s head coach. He is the winningest college coach in Missouri and No. 10 in the nation among four-year colleges, a 15-time Coach of the Year and a member of five regional and national Halls of Fame.

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  • 1970s

    Dr. Stephen Jones, ’70, is co-pastor of First Baptist Church of Kansas City, Missouri. Stephen had two books published last year: "Galusha, Crisis and Courage in a Civil War Pastor" (Trafford) and "Learning Jesus" (Wipf and Stock). On June 6, 2022, he will celebrate 50 years of service as an American Baptist pastor. He has served churches across the country, serving in his current capacity since 2013. Stephen will become president of the Great Rivers Region of the American Baptist Churches in October 2022. He and his wife, Janice, reside in Kansas City and celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 2020.

    Jim Dunn, ’71, published a book “Fairlane: A Cosmic Rascal Memoir” (Amazon) in December 2021. He and his wife, Kathy (Moore) Dunn, ’73, reside in Prairie Village, Kansas.

    Dr. David Keith, ’71, retired in 2022 as dean of the Townsend School of Music at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia. He and his wife, Mary (Clibourn) Keith, ’71, moved to Seattle to be near their two sons.

    Bob Stergos, ’77, co-founded and serves as executive director of a St. Louis-based nonprofit organization, A Seat at the Table, which provides residential mentoring and community resources in a Christian family environment for at-risk 18- to 25-year olds. The nonprofit is working to establish chapters in Kansas City, Cincinnati and other major U.S. metropolitan areas to help provide a sense of family as well as the educational/vocational, life and job-skill, counseling and spiritual development resources needed to help young people transition into thriving adulthood.

    Dr. Murray Jennex, ’78, has been included in Stanford University's list of top 2% of scientists in the world. The list is based on data from Elsevier's Scopus of the most-cited scientists in 22 fields. Murray’s published research was in the category of information systems. He is a management information systems professor emeritus at San Diego State University and is a clinical professor of computer information systems at West Texas A&M.

    Dale Labuary, ’79, was inducted into the 2022 Missouri Sports Hall of Fame for his successful 27-year run as football coach at Monroe City High School. His teams won two state championships and were state runners-up twice. He is the 21st coach in state history to reach 200 career victories, posting an overall record of 201-73.

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  • 1980s

    Jack Hopkins, ’81, president of Community Bank of Raymore, was named president of Missouri Independent Bankers Association for the 2021-2022 term. MIBA represents more than 150 independently owned community financial institutions.

    The Honorable Robin Carnahan, ’83, was the Missouri Honoree for the 2022 USA Today Women of the Year program. She is the current administrator of the U.S. General Services Administration as appointed by President Biden, was elected to two terms as Missouri Secretary of State and served with Albright Stonebridge Group, a global strategy firm founded by former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

    Jeanette Meyer, ’83, of RE/MAX Alliance in Fort Collins, Colorado, was awarded the highest level of service achievement in the real estate industry, Quality Service Certified® Platinum. This is the 17th consecutive year that Meyer has received the award, a recognition of earning 100 percent client service satisfaction in 2021 as measured by Leading Research Corporation.

    Randy Hilton, ’87, retired as CEO of Vocational Services, Inc., after a long career with the nonprofit that provides support for people with disabilities.

    Gary Witt, ’87, was elected chief judge of the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District. He was appointed to the Western District in 2010, and previously served as an associate circuit judge in Platte County (6th Judicial Circuit) and practiced law in Platte County and served in the Missouri House of Representatives

    Lisa Essig, ’89, of Kearney was among 10 Fred L. Turner Golden Arch Award U.S. recipients for 2022. This highest recognition for a McDonald’s franchisee is presented at the McDonald’s Worldwide Convention to franchisees who put their customers and people first, lead with integrity, promote inclusion in their community and champion the McDonald’s system.

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  • 1990s

    Jim Richerson, ’90, captained the United States team that won the 2022 Women’s PGA Cup. Richerson was elected PGA president in 2020 after serving as vice president and secretary. In 2021 he was named general manager of The Riviera Country Club & The Riviera Tennis Club in Pacific Palisades, California, the official golf course for the 2028 Olympic Games. He previously served as senior vice president of operations for Troon.

    Kristen (Fairlie) Smarr, ’91, was named interim vice chancellor of communications and marketing at University of Missouri and chief marketing and communications officer for the UM System in September. She has worked at the university for more than 20 years and most recently served as associate vice chancellor for the Joint Office of Strategic Communications and Marketing.

    Bil Brown, ’94, was hired as the creative and digital specialist in the Marketing and Public Relations Office at Liberty Hospital.

    Chris Leaver, ’94, received the Lambda Chi Alpha Order of Merit award. This award recognizes lengthy and dedicated service at the local chapter level and has been given to less than 400 members from the entire fraternity membership since it was started in 1935.

    Megan Word, '94, of Kansas City, was appointed to the Clay County Board of Election Commissioners. She serves as the government relations director for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network for Kansas and Nebraska. Previously, she served the Missouri Housing Development Commission and The Salvation Army for Western Kansas and Missouri. She has a master's degree in public policy from Pepperdine University.

    Hale Johnston, ’95, was appointed CEO of Berkley Enterprise Risk Solutions, a new business focused on providing workers’ compensation insurance to large businesses headquartered in California. In his 30-year career, Hale has held various executive and leadership positions in the insurance industry, and he has served on the Board of Governors for the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California and as chairman of the Board of Directors for the California Workers’ Compensation Institute.

    Jill (McCrea) Nagel, ’98, was inducted in the 2022 Missouri Sports Hall of Fame. In her 17 seasons as women’s basketball coach at Columbia Rock Bridge High School, her teams have won five state championships, four of them consecutive. She is a five-time Coach of the Year by the Missouri Basketball Coaches Association.

    Rick Kayser, ’99, was promoted to executive Vice President of Alberici Constructors, Inc., having served the company for 21 years. He oversees the steel fabrication division, equipment, warehouse, maintenance field operations and Hillsdale Fabricators which supports large projects including the construction of the new MLS stadium in downtown St. Louis. He serves on Jewell’s Civil Engineering Advisory Board.

    Dr. Katie (Martin) Lawson, ’99, was inducted into the Liberty High School 2021 Hall of Fame. At LHS, she was a three-sport athlete receiving all-conference honors in basketball and volleyball. She also served as National Honor Society president and drum major. Katie currently is the executive director of special programs for North Kansas City Schools.

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  • 2000s

    Mary (Taylor) Huntley, ’00, was ranked best in state among America's 2022 Top Women Wealth Advisors by Forbes in collaboration with SHOOK Research, and nationally among the Top Wealth Advisor Moms for 2021 by Working Mother and SHOOK Research. She is a Certified Financial Planner™ and a partner at Cambium Wealth and Legacy Strategies in Arizona.

    Carolyn Shadid Lewis, ’01, completed a feature-length documentary that was part of the Kansas City Underground Film Festival in September. “InterGeneration” is an animated, cross-generational journey of Boston’s past and present through the vantage point of a group of inner-city teens and elders.

    Dr. Alexis (Barnes) Richter, ’02, of Olathe, Kansas, completed a Doctor of Education in Education and Leadership with a concentration in Higher Education from Rockhurst University in August. She is employed by the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College.

    Frank Hensley, '04, and his wife, Heather, welcomed a daughter, Violet Elizabeth, on May 13. She joins a brother, Beric, age 4, and the family resides in California's San Fernando Valley. Frank has worked at Universal Music Group for 14 years and enjoys his career as senior director of label relations for partner labels.

    Dr. Cindy (Knowles) Thompson, ’04, was appointed dean of libraries for the University of Missouri-Kansas City University Libraries in February 2022.

    Dr. Alan Wegener, ’04, was elected president of the North Central States Optometric Council, a regional council of state optometric associations whose purpose is to enhance the vision and health of the public and to promote the art and science of the profession of optometry in Illinois, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska and Wisconsin.

    Andrew Johnson, ’05, of Kansas City, received a two-year studio residency for writing at Charlotte Street Foundation and an ArtsKC Inspiration grant for his new book, "The Thread," which will be published in September.

    Jessica Flanary, ’06, accepted a position in September with VA Portland Healthcare System as deputy chief nurse executive.

    Justin Wichert, '06, has been named the head baseball coach at Fort Hays (Kansas) State University. He was drafted by the San Diego Padres in 2003, then pitched for the Jewell Cardinals for two years. After graduating from Jewell, he played at the professional level with the Kansas City T-Bones and the Port Charlotte (Florida) Redfish before starting his college coaching career.

    Dr. Josh Hastey, ’07, completed a Ph.D. in international studies in 2020. In 2021 he published his first academic book chapter, co-authored an article in the Journal of Strategic Security with Dr. Adam Knight, ’08, and was appointed assistant professor of government at Regent University. Rebekah (Bouas) Hastey, ’08, serves as the children’s ministry director at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Norfolk, Virginia, where they reside with their three children.

    Emily Wales, ’07, has been named president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Great Plains, which covers Kansas, western Missouri, Oklahoma and Arkansas. She joined the organization in 2017, having served as chief operations counsel, general counsel and, for nearly a year, as interim president and CEO. She earned a Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School in 2013.

    John Egorugwu, ’08, joined the New York Giants in February as the inside linebackers coach. He was the linebackers coach at Vanderbilt for the 2021 season and spent four years with the Buffalo Bills and two years with the Baltimore Ravens. The accounting and business major and Cardinal Football alumnus also worked with linebackers at Jewell from 2010-2011. John has a master’s in educational and counseling psychology from University of Missouri-Columbia.

    Bethany Hughes, ’08, completed a seven-year, 18,221 mile human-powered odyssey. She and companion Lauren Reed traveled the length of the Americas, from the tip of South America to the Arctic Ocean. They set out to redefine how the outdoor sport and long-distance community engage with local peoples and the landscape.

    Lieutenant Commander Kayron Parrish, ’08, is a 3rd Battalion executive officer and 13th company officer at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. He most recently served as executive officer on USS Devastator and fleet up to commanding officer with deployment to Bahrain. He holds a master’s degree in leadership, education and development from George Washington University.

    Major Tyler B Folan, ’09, was selected and is currently serving as the commanding officer of Recruiting Station Denver. He and his Marines are responsible for enlisted and officer recruiting across five states and over 217,000 square miles. Less than 3 percent of all Marine majors were selected for this competitive position.

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  • 2010s

    For the second year, Ashton Botts, ’10, and Professor Nathan Wyman, ’95, teamed up as director and set designer. Their show, “The Curious Savage” with Olathe Civic Theatre Association, swept the awards ceremony for the 2021-2022 season with eight awards, including Best Direction (Botts), Best Set Design (Wyman) and Best Show.

    Kyle Wampler, ’10, has been named the activities director in the Northwest School District (House Springs). He had been teaching health and principles of biomedical science and serving as the head baseball coach and assistant football coach at the high school where he graduated in 2006.

    Dr. Annie (Shepard) Farris, ’12, of Kansas City completed a Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice in May 2021 from Missouri State University and is working at Centerpoint Hospital (Independence).

    Trista Turley, ’12, joined the Columbus, Ohio, law firm of Isaac Wiles as an associate in the public law and litigation practice groups. She previously served for six years as an assistant attorney general and staff attorney for the State of Ohio.

    Lauren Anderson, ’13, accepted a position as a senior marine mammal trainer at SeaWorld San Antonio where she works with beluga whales and Pacific white-sided dolphins. Lauren spent the last six years putting her Jewell psychology degree to use as a trainer in Florida, working with marine mammals at the Miami Seaquarium.

    Jennifer (Carney) Kahmann, ’13, was named director of people operations at The Scarbrough Group in February 2022. She joined the international global logistics company as an intern, then became a licensed customs broker and a certified customs specialist. The company's headquarters are in Kansas City.

    Dr. Edward Scott, Jr., ’13, completed a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology: Applied Developmental Science at the University of Virginia and accepted a tenure-track faculty position as assistant professor of social work at the University of Houston, Graduate College of Social Work. He earned the Gansneder Dissertation Award for Qualitative Research and was a co-recipient of the Outstanding Doctoral Student Award.

    Sean Shelton, ’13, was named director of sporting operations of the Munich Ravens. He was a quarterback and MVP in the European League of Football, retiring in fall 2022.

    Chris Stathos, ’14, was promoted to senior manager of partnership development for the Kansas City Chiefs. He will begin his ninth National Football League season with the Chiefs this fall and has been with the club's partnership team since graduating from Jewell.

    Dr. Stewart Duncan, ’15, completed a Ph.D. in Musicology from Indiana University and was awarded the Freda and Walter Kauffman Prize. His article "'An Excellent Piece of Propaganda': The British Council's Use of Choirs as Cultural Diplomacy in the 1930s" was recently published in The Musical Quarterly. He has been named an assistant teaching professor of musicology at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory.

    Dr. Bradley Dice, ’16, completed a Ph.D. in physics and scientific computing at the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor in 2021. He resides in Liberty and recently started at NVIDIA Corporation developing software for accelerated data science.

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  • 2020s

    Jessica (Holcomb) Sloan, ’20, of Topeka, Kansas, started in the new Media Accelerator Program at GALE Partners, a media and marketing agency.

    Hannah Koehler, ’21, begins Wake Forest University’s Clinical Mental Health graduate program in fall 2022.

    Kole Wagener, ’21, will start the Doctor of Psychology program at Kansas City University in fall 2022. He has been serving Tri-County Mental Health Services as a caseworker.

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2021 Class Notes

  • 1970s

    Larry Burchett, ’75, was inducted into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame for his football coaching career at Midway High School. He resides in Freeman.

    Kelly McClelland, ’75, was appointed to the Missouri Veterans Commission. Kelly has been president of McClelland Law Firm, P.C. since 1993 and General Counsel of the New Liberty Hospital District since 1984. He resides in Liberty.

    Charlie Funk, ’76, was awarded the 2021 James A. Leach Leadership Award by the Iowa Bankers Association in October. This is the highest honor an Iowa banker can receive. Charlie has more than 40 years of banking experience and serves as president and CEO of MidWestOne Bank in Iowa City.

    Glenna (Sharp) With, ’76, was inducted into the Winnetonka High School (North Kansas City Schools) Hall of Fame for her teaching career, community involvement and church-related activities. She resides in Newnan, Georgia.

    Janette Lohman, ’77, was selected as State Tax Lawyer of the Year by Finance Monthly. One of just 11 U.S. attorneys highlighted in the publication, Lohman was recognized for numerous honors in her career, including a groundbreaking role as the first female director of the Missouri Department of Revenue. She joined Thompson Coburn LLP in St. Louis as a partner in 2003.

    Mark Bredemeier, ’79, of Lee’s Summit, was appointed to the Jackson County Sports Complex Authority by Gov. Mike Parson. Mark is an attorney with a background in political, government, and business litigation and policymaking.

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  • 1980s

    Jim Gaines, ’80, was promoted to Enterprise Imaging Seller at IBM Watson Health. He resides in Wildwood.

    Dr. Jeremy Spencer, ’80, received his Doctor of Ministry degree in 2019 from Northeastern Seminary, which is on the campus of Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, N.Y. His dissertation was titled, “Ties That Bind: A Case Study of Restructuring and Reorganizing in the American Baptist Churches in the U.S.A., 1962-1978.” He is pastor at Odessa Baptist Church in Odessa, N.Y.

    Robin Carnahan, ’83, was nominated by President Joe Biden as Administrator of the General Services Administration. Robin is a former Secretary of State of Missouri and founded and led the State and Local Government Practice at 18F, a tech consultancy inside the U.S. government.

    Steve Arbo, ’84, received a 2021 MARC (Mid-America Regional Council) Regional Leadership Award for his leadership in emergency preparedness, including the pandemic response efforts. Steve has worked 35 years in the public service sector, serving as city manager of Lee’s Summit since 2008.

    Scott Burton, ’84, was named director of the Southern Desert Regional Police Academy at the College of Southern Nevada where he is a tenured professor of criminal justice. He is retired from a 25-year combined federal law enforcement career with the Federal Bureau of Prisons and U.S. Probation and Pretrial Services.

    Zel Fischer, ’85, was one of six Missouri judges chosen to be trained to help educate and lead their colleagues forward as novel COVID-related issues are raised in Missouri courts. The training was part of the COVID-19 Case and Evidentiary Support Initiative from the National Courts and Sciences Institute (NCSI), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to enhancing courts’ capacity to handle complex and novel scientific evidence. This initiative was funded by a grant from the State Judicial Institute. Zel also serves as NCSI president and is an Associate Judge of the Supreme Court of Missouri.

    Alma Sealine, ’89, received the Association of College and University Housing Officers Parthenon Award, which recognizes achievement, outstanding service, leadership and contributions to the field of campus housing. Alma got her professional start as the resident director of Semple Hall at Jewell and is now the housing director at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She has held resident life roles at Case Western Reserve University, Western Illinois University and West Virginia University. She holds a master’s degree in college student personnel administration from Indiana University.

    Chris Thompson, ’89, has retired from teaching. He taught social studies for 10 years in Jefferson City and 19 years in Warrensburg. He currently works as an adjunct at the University of Central Missouri and coaches for the KC Athletics youth soccer club. He resides in Warrensburg.

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  • 1990s

    Lisa O’Brien Enger, ’90, started her new role as executive director for the American Institute of Architects (AIA) St. Louis Chapter in December 2020. She has extensive executive leadership experience, most recently serving as COO of U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance. She holds an M.A. in Marketing from Webster University and attended The Wharton School Executive Education at the University of Pennsylvania.

    Sarah (Lindgren) Fravel, ’90, has been named the lead pastor at Crossings Wesleyan Church in Millville, New Jersey. She is also working on a Master of Divinity degree at Fuller Theological Seminary.

    David Israelite, ’90, has been named Billboard's CEO of the week. The president/CEO of National Music Publishers' Association has geared his focus on unlicensed music being used in the gaming industry and on other platforms. At Jewell, David studied political science and communication. He holds a juris doctor from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law.

    Tom Carnahan, ’91, of St. Louis was appointed as a U.S. representative for the 76th Session General Assembly of the United Nations that met in September 2021. A renewable energy developer, entrepreneur and attorney, Carnahan founded Wind Capital Group in 2005 and developed Missouri’s first wind farm before expanding throughout the Midwest. He also co-founded Upepo Energy, focused on bringing sustainable, large-scale wind energy projects to East Africa. He became partner in Oakland Capital Partners in 2019 where he manages solar energy portfolio companies.

    Erika Sandstrom, ’91, was featured on the cover of EdTech K12 magazine for the summer 2021 issue. A digital media teacher at Higgins Middle School in Peabody, Massachusetts, she was interviewed about the use of digital tools in art education to help with self-expression.

    Kristen (Fairlie) Smarr, ’91, has been named associate vice chancellor for communications and marketing. Kristen has served at the University of Missouri for more than 20 years, including 14 years as the director of marketing and communications for the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources. In 2018, she joined MU’s Joint Office of Strategic Communications and Marketing and has focused on enhanced integration and planning among communicators across Mizzou’s campus. She resides in Columbia.

    Blake Day, ’92, has been promoted from president of Shick Esteve North America to president and CEO of the Kansas City and France facilities. He joined the company in 2015 as CFO. Shick Esteve creates solutions for the industrial food and beverage manufacturing industry.

    Tony Ceballos, ’96, of Kansas City, received a 2020 Author Elite Award in Historical Fiction for his book “Forced Turnovers: A Novel for Racial Unity.” The audiobook release was held in 2021 at Corbin Theatre in Liberty’s Garrison Cultural Center where Tony attended kindergarten.

    Jennifer (Franklin) Schenck, ’96, received the 2020 Debin Benish Outstanding Businesswoman Award. This award honors a Columbia businesswoman who exhibits leadership in supporting small business, volunteers in the community and creates positive change. Jennifer is the co-founder of The Connection Exchange, a welcome service that connects new businesses and residents with resources. She resides in Boonville.

    Nancy Nicholson, ’97, was elected the next Kankakee County (Illinois) associate judge. She resides in St. Anne, Illinois.

    Leslie (Bailey) Boe, ’98, has been elected as a shareholder/director of Dysart Taylor Cotter & McMonigle, P.C., a law firm in Kansas City, Missouri. She resides in Leawood, Kansas.

    Andy McGill, ’99, has been named assistant principal at Cape Girardeau Central High School.

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  • 2000s

    Dana (Youngs) McEachen, ’01, a Microsoft business applications sales executive, was awarded the exclusive Circle of Excellence Gold Club Award for the third time. The distinguished award recognizes the extraordinary performance of individuals who transform and contribute to the overall success and growth of Microsoft. She resides in Overland Park, Kansas.

    Jill (Esely) Durnin, ’02, was named the new director of Lake Career & Technical Center with the Camdenton School District. She has been serving as assistant principal at Camdenton Middle School and is pursuing a doctorate in educational administration.

    Kristin (Knopik) Gillette, ’02, was appointed athletics director at Park University in Parkville. She previously served as associate director of athletics/compliance at MidAmerica Nazarene University in Olathe, Kansas. She holds a master’s degree in sports administration from Gonzaga University.

    Dr. Christopher Strelluf, ’02, has been promoted to associate professor of linguistics at University of Warwick (United Kingdom).

    Dr. Amy Smith, ’04, has accepted a job as a post-doctoral research fellow at the Children’s Mercy Research Institute in Kansas City. She will be working in the Health Services and Outcomes divisions, developing music interventions that target health needs in infants.

    Mark Rorvig, ’05, serves as principal at Harrisonville (Missouri) High School after seven years as assistant principal and years as a personal finance teacher and basketball coach.

    Robert Barr, ’06, received the 2021 American Library Association Ernest A. DiMattia Award for Innovation and Service to Community and Profession. He was honored for his service during the pandemic as planning section chief of the Emergency Operations Center. He is the director of Juneau (Alaska) Public Libraries.

    Kyle Faulconer, '07, is moving to Sydney, Australia, as the new PepsiCo CEO for Australia and New Zealand. In his 14 years with PepsiCo, his roles have focused on field operations, strategic account leadership and direct-to-consumer sales strategy. Kyle has been serving as VP and general manager at Frito-Lay.

    Dr. Ashley (Ihde-Baker) Popejoy, ’07, was named to the 2020 American Dental Association 10 Under 10 list, which recognizes new dentists who demonstrate excellence early in their careers. She resides in Nixa.

    Dr. Allyson Fry-Petit, ’08, was promoted to associate professor of analytical and materials chemistry with tenure at California State University, Fullerton.

    Vanessa (Ayers) Thomson, ’08, was named one of six Regional Teachers of the Year for Kansas City. Vanessa is a second-grade teacher at Chapel Hill in the North Kansas City School District.

    Dan Lanning, '08, was named head football coach of the University of Oregon. He spent the previous four seasons at the University of Georgia, where he directed the top defense in the nation in his three seasons as defensive coordinator and helped lead the Bulldogs to the 2022 national championship. He also coached at Pittsburgh, Arizona State, Sam Houston State, Alabama and Memphis.

    Robby Discher, ’09, was named special teams football coach for the University of Georgia Bulldogs.

    Actor and playwright Maggie Lou Rader, ’09, of Cincinnati received Theater J’s Patty Abramson Jewish Play Prize this week. Her play “The Helpers” was selected from 83 scripts for the prize that recognizes a promising emerging woman playwright for work that celebrates, explores, and/or struggles with the complexities and nuances of the Jewish experience. Theater J, a nationally-renowned, professional theater in Washington, D.C., calls “The Helpers” a fascinating journey into the world of Anne Frank.

    Alexa (Broyles) Summit, ’09, was appointed Clay County (Liberty) public administrator, working with the most vulnerable populations in the county. She took office in August 2021. She had served in the administrator's office for 13 years as a case coordinator.

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  • 2010s

    Brian Gehrlein, ’10, published The Book of Rules, an interactive book for young readers. Brian is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, participates in kid lit critique groups and is the creator and manager of Picture Book Spotlight, a literary blog featuring interviews with authors, agents and other industry professionals. He resides in Liberty with his wife and son.

    Rachel (Aunspaugh) Goddard, ’10, accepted a position at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence as Project Coordinator for the Congressionally-mandated Intelligence Community (IC) Centers of Academic Excellence program. The program provides grants to minority-serving institutions of higher education to build the diverse IC workforce of the future. She has completed 10 years of federal service.

    Nick Larson, ’12, has been named superintendent of Community R-6 School District in Laddonia, Missouri. He resides in Centralia.

    Kate Bowles Shively, ’12, was named Peace Educator of the Year 2021 by The Wholistic Peace Institute. Kate, a counselor for Canby (Oregon) School District, received the honor for using a innovative and creative approach with her middle school students to create an enriching learning experience during the pandemic.

    Hannah De Priest, ’13, won Second Prize at the 2021 International Cesti Competition for Baroque Opera in Austria. The soprano has a master’s degree in vocal performance from McGill University in Montréal, and a master’s in historical performance practices from Case Western Reserve University.

    Jake Hartley, ’14, was recognized by the Missouri Association of Elementary School Principals as the Clay-Platte region honorees. He is the assistant principal at Crestview Elementary and resides in Kansas City, Missouri.

    Jake Holliman, ’16, moved back to the Kansas City area after five years of working around the country for various professional sports organizations and getting involved in high-volume manufacturing sales. He currently works in sales at Creative Blow Mold Tooling.

    Jacquinta (Hammons) Nelson, ’16, of Kansas City is founder and head coach of STEP Movement, LLC, and was nominated by the group as World of Step's Coach of the Year. STEP Movement is an organization whose mission is to cultivate youth to express their passion for creativity, community and collaboration through art of stepping.

    Colton Simmons, ’16, is in his fourth year at Nova Southeastern University in Florida, pursuing a Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Sciences through the Molecular Medicine and Pharmacogenomics track. He currently works in the AutoNation Institute for Breast Cancer Research and Care at NSU.

    Logan Winter, ’16, CPA, was promoted to supervising senior associate at Sink, Gordon & Associates, LLP. He resides in Manhattan, Kansas.

    Ben Shinogle, ’17, was named the 2021-2022 Mortar Board Diane Selby Fellow, one of a few fellowships awarded annually to Mortar Board members pursuing an advanced degree. He is working on a master’s degree in international relations at Johns Hopkins University. He also was a Fulbright Scholar to Greece and earned a master’s degree in educational policy and leadership from Marquette University while committing two years to Teach for America as an English teacher to Hmong refugees.

    Charlotte Burns, ’18, was accepted to the Stephens College Master of Physician Assistant Studies program in Columbia. She will graduate in December 2023.

    Nichole Marquis, ’18, of Jacksonville, Florida, teaches in Duval County Public Schools. She serves as the PBIS (positive behavioral interventions and supports) coordinator and will be starting a master’s degree in educational leadership.

    Dalton Nelson, ’19, received a 2021 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. He is pursuing a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering at Vanderbilt University, researching infectious disease diagnostics with an emphasis on low-resource engineering.

    Thais Quiroga, ’19, was on a four-person team representing South America that placed second in the 2020 international contest for graduate students, The Geneva Challenge. Charged with addressing social inclusion, her team created a multiplatform solution to Bolivian youth’s education and labor inclusion. Quiroga completed a master’s degree this year in development economics and international development at The Graduate Institute of Geneva in Switzerland.

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  • 2020s

    Parker Tergin, ’20, is founder and CEO of PondDay. He launched the booking platform in 2021 to connect private landowners with people who want to rent a pond or lake property.

    Kevin Kim, ’21, has been hired as Jewell’s new outside linebackers coach for football. Kevin was also part of the Cardinal football team during his time at Jewell.

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