Class notes

Fall 2017 Edition


Tony Gottlob (j’71) is a singer-songwriter. He wrote “Morning Comes Breaking,” for which he also directed a music video.

Charles Hay (j’72, l’75) was inducted this year in the Clay Center Community High School Hall of Fame. He’s special counsel at Foulston Siefkin in Topeka, where he lives.

Donald Loncasty (j’72) manages the Kansas City Chorale, which recently received its third Grammy Award in chorale performance. Don and his husband, Charles Bruffy, make their home in Kansas City.

J.B. Forbes (j’73) and Rob Rains (j’78) will be inducted into the St. Louis Media Hall of Fame next year. Forbes is a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and Rains has been covering St. Louis sports for more than three decades and has written dozens of books with his wife, Sally Rains, who also will be inducted. Read the story.

Lawrence Grewach (j’75) retired after a career as an administrative law judge for the Minnesota Department of Human Services.

Bill French (j’77) was elected second vice president of the Tulsa Men’s Club. He lives in Bixby, Oklahoma.

Gerald Seib (j’78) executive Washington editor at The Wall Street Journal, in June was recognized by the Society of Professional Journalists as a Fellow of the Society.

Ken Stone

Ken Stone

Julie Johnson Staples (j’78) has been named the executive director of Intersections International, an organization that serves as a catalyst to unite disparate groups to forge a common ground in global peace, justice and reconciliation. Read the news story.

Ken Stone (j'76) won 14 awards, including six first-place plaques, in the San Diego Press Club's Excellence in Journalism Awards, for his work in the Times of San Diego, where he is a contributing editor. Read the story. Also, Stone recently published a children's book, "Make Me the Best at Track and Field," which can be purchased on Amazon.


Brian Purdy (j’81) will now oversee Chattanooga, Las Vegas, Memphis and New Orleans with a title of CBS Radio Dallas market president as part of CBS Radio’s merger with Entercom. Read the story. Purdy also was named Broadcaster of the Year by the Texas Association of Broadcasters. Read the story. 

Thaine Shetter (j’81) makes his home in Pennington, New Jersey, where he’s a content editor at Accenture.

Tracy Diane Campbell

Tracy Diane Campbell

Tracey Diane Campbell (j’84) has been named chief executive officer of BRIDGE Healthcare Partners, a health-care technology company based in Denver. Read the news release.

Mark Mears (j'84) and his daughter, Brianna Mears.

Mark Mears (j'84) and his daughter, Brianna Mears.

Mark Mears (j’84) was featured in this KU Alumni Association article written by his  daughter, Brianna Mears, a J-School sophomore.  

Jeff Stehney, j’84, owner of Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que, will be inducted in the Barbecue Hall of Fame at the American Royal in September.

Jim Suhr (j’87) has joined global engineering and construction company Black & Veatch in Overland Park, Kansas, as manager of media relations. Suhr worked for 20 years as a multimedia journalist with The Associated Press.

Phil Wilke (j’88, c’84) is development director for KRWG TV-FM, the public broadcaster licensed to New Mexico State University, in Las Cruces.

Konni Kelly Flynn (j’89) is a development officer at the Kansas Historical Society in Topeka, where she lives with her husband, Mike.

Forrest MacDonald (j’89) lives in Tampa, Florida, where he’s a mixed-media artist and photographer.

Drew Sidener (j’89) is the creative services director at KCNC-TV CBS4, the CBS-owned and operated affiliate in Denver, Colorado. A 24-time regional Emmy Award winner, Sidener has worked as a news photographer in Fort Myers, Florida, Washington, D.C., Green Bay, Wisconsin, and Phoenix, Arizona.


Thomas Clark (j’90, c’90) is a judge on the 22nd Judicial Circuit Court in St. Louis.

Dave Peacock (j’90) was named president and chief operating officer of Schnuck Markets Inc., the Maryland Heights-based grocer, last month. Read the press release.

Stan Diel (j’91) is assistant professor of mass communication at Francis Marion University in Florence, South Carolina. Diel graduated in summer 2017 from the University of Alabama with a Ph.D. in communication and information sciences.

Margaret Townsend Graff (j’91) resides in Barrington, Illinois, where she’s an account director at Time Inc.

Nicole Vap (j’91) is an investigative producer for KUSA Channel 9 in Denver. In April, she won three regional awards from the Radio Television Digital News Association.

Gianna Gariglietti (j’92) lives in Overland Park, where she’s president and CEO of Lakemary Center in Miami and Johnson counties.

Ranjit Arab (j’93, g’09) is senior acquisition editor at the University of Iowa Press in Iowa City.

Marlene Dearinger Neill (j’93) has published her first book, “Public Relations Ethics: Senior PR Pros Tell Us How to Speak Up and Keep Your Job.”

Kimberly Hobbs (j’94) is now vice president of Corporate Partnerships and Premium Sales for the Kansas City Chiefs. Read the news release. 

Bob Holtzman (j’94) is now a reporter for Infield Chatter, the official app of the Major League Baseball Player’s Association. He was previously an NFL reporter with ESPN.

Robert Reynolds (j’94) directs operations at Stanley Restoration in Cedar Hill, Texas.

Chad Lawhorn (j’95) editor of the Lawrence Journal-World, in April received the Clyde M. Reed Jr. Master Editor Award from the Kansas Press Association. Lawhorn joined the paper in 2001 and served in several roles before becoming editor last August.

Ann Weishaar Glaser (j’98) is marketing planner for ASSA ABLOY, a door and security company in Phoenix, Arizona.

Grant Moise (j’98) lives in Dallas, where he was recently promoted to executive vice president of A.H. Belo Corporation and general manager of the Dallas Morning News.

Scott Beach (j'99) has been named the director of TEKsystems Digital, a national digital and creative recruitment and services firm serving marketing, agency and digital organizations.

Jeff Chaltas (j’99) has published a cartoon book, “Dogbone Boulevard,” a humorous compilation of his one-panel cartoons. It is available on Amazon.

Mick Shaffer (j’99) has been hired as sports director at KSHB-TV. Read the story.


Kelly Springs Kelley (j’02) directs marketing at EventPro Strategies in Scottsdale, Arizona. She and her husband, Steven, live in Phoenix with their two children, Natalie and Cameron.

Lisa Coble-Krings (j’05) is now marketing communications coordinator for the Department of Theatre and University Theatre at KU.

Amity Dannefer (j’05) is now senior talent manager at VML.

Ryan Greene (j’05) is now director of communications of the Las Vegas Lights Football Club.

Todd Panula (j’05) is lead columnist for Bleedin' Blue, a web and email service devoted to St. Louis Blues Hockey.

Chris Tackett (j’05) is social media director at the NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council), an environmental nonprofit and uses journalism and social media for both education and political advocacy campaigns.

Hailey Handy (j’06) is the communication and event coordinator at Washburn University School of Business in Topeka, Kansas. She also owns her own Etsy shop, Handy Dandy Design Studio where she sells her designs on apparel and accessories. 

Sarah Connelly Holley (j’06) joined ThinkFun, a children’s toy and game company, as director of brand management in August 2016. She and her husband, Steele, reside in Alexandria, Virginia with their son, Steele Jr., who was born in August 2014.

Jamie Zarda (j’06) lives in Houston, where she manages programs for the Offshore Technology Conference.

Kate Garman (j’07) has been hired as a coordinator to run the City of Seattle’s Smart City program. Read the press release.

Kaley Hattrup (j’07, c’07) directs marketing for Sporting KC in Kansas City.

C.J. Moore (j’07) has published a book, “Beyond the Streak,” about KU men’s basketball’s 13 straight Big 12 titles.

Hillary Carter (j’08) is director, client engagement at VML in Kansas City. Carter is responsible for the communications, growth and connectivity of the client engagement department across VML, North America.

Blake Cripps (j’08) is now the play-by-play announcer for Newman University basketball and baseball. 

Mallory Hammersmith Hannah (j’08) is a strategic marketing consultant in Leawood, where she lives with Jack (b’08) and their two daughters.

Heather Riffel Musselman (j’08) is a marketing administrator at Peavey Corporation in Lenexa. She makes her home in Gardner with Zachary, ’10, and their daughter, Ashlyn.

Katlin Brosious Bradshaw (j’09, g’11) is a finance manager at Textron Systems in Hunt Valley, Maryland. She makes her home in Shrewsbury, Pennsylvania.

Brian Schneweis (j’09, c’09) works at the American Academy of Family Physicians in Leawood, where he’s a marketing copywriter.

Joseph Schremmer (j’09, c’09, g’13, l’13) is a partner at Depew Gillen Rathbun & McInteer in Wichita, where he resides.


Lauren Keith (j’10) is destination editor for the Middle East & North Africa at Lonely Planet in London.

Carolyn Cohen (j’11, c’11) is now global social media content manager at Garmin at its Olathe headquarters. Carolyn and her husband, David Cohen (b’11, MAcc’12) reside in Prairie Village, Kansas. 

Bobby Burch (j’11) is the editor-in-chief at Startland News, leading its editorial operations and engagement with the Kansas City community.

Jessica Nelson Palm

Jessica Nelson Palm

Jessica Nelson Palm (j’11) was honored by the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce with the 2017 ATHENA Young Professionals Leadership Award. As managing director of TeamKC: Life+Talent at the Kansas City Area Development Council, Jessica works with the top 250 companies in the region to showcase Kansas City's lifestyle to talented individuals from around the world. Read the news story.

Brianne Pfannenstiel (j’11, c’11) is a statehouse reporter for the Des Moines Register in Iowa.

Andrew Posch (j’11) creates content for Sullivan Higdon & Sink in Kansas City. He lives in Roeland Park.

Michael Lavieri (j’12) coordinates public relations at Proventus Consulting in Overland Park.

Kameron Mack (j’12) is a senior producer at Complex Media Inc. in New York City. He recently produced and directed his first documentary, “Hip Hop DNA.”

Danyelle Buschbom (j’13) is now media buyer for Retirement HQ.

Sarah Stern (j’13) was featured in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences blog, Hawks to Watch. Sarah is public relations manager, Latin America at Netflix.

Brent Whitten (j’13) is deputy director of operations at the Kansas Department for Children and Families

Becca Berger (j’14) is now marketing coordinator for the Dallas Stars in the National Hockey League.

Meredith Chait (j’14) is a media liaison for Starcom Worldwide in Chicago.

Caitlin Doornbos (j’14) has accepted a position as a foreign correspondent covering the U.S. Navy in Yokosuka, Japan, for Stars and Stripes. She previously was a breaking news reporter for the Orlando (Florida) Sentinel and host of the Sentinel's Central Florida True Crime.

Kate Shelton (j’14) is public affairs specialist for the city of Spring Hill, Kansas. She was married June 3 in Paola, Kansas, to Chris Shupert.

Nikki Wentling (j’14) was accepted into the 2017-2018 class of the National Press Foundation's Paul Miller Washington Reporting Fellowship, which gives young reporters an intensive overview of reporting in Washington, D.C. Read the press release.

Julie Etzler (j’15) lives in Wichita, where she coordinates consumer marketing at INTRUST Bank.

Victoria Kirk (j’15) coordinates regional marketing at Moss Adams in Los Angeles.

Allison Kite (j’16) is statehouse reporter at the Topeka Capital-Journal.

Allyson Maturey (j’16) is the digital media and content manager for the program in environmental design at the University of Colorado Boulder. She lives in Boulder with her partner, Austin, and their two Boston terriers, Bella and Buehler.

Nashia Baker (j’17) was named to the Academic All-America Track & Field/Cross Country team. Read the story.

Ben Brodsky (c’17) and Amie Just (j’17) video collaborated on this video about being a Jayhawk.

Brendan Dzwierzynski (j’17) has accepted a job with WIBW 580 AM in Topeka as a sports talk host and reporter.

Husain Ebrahim

Husain Ebrahim

Husain Ebrahim, who graduated with a Ph.D. in spring 2017, has accepted a position at Kuwait University as an assistant professor in the department of mass communications. Ebrahim also started a Kuwaiti Chapter of the University of Kansas Alumni Association and organized the first gathering of Kuwaiti Jayhawks.

Dana El-Shoubaki (j’17) is a PR/influencer relations intern at Benefit Cosmetics.

Nicole Feyh (j’17) has accepted a sports reporting position with KALB Sports in Louisiana.

Laura Kay Furney (j’17) is now video producer for intercollegiate athletics at the University of California, Berkeley.

James Hoyt (j’17) is a copy editor at The Park Record Newspaper in Park City, Utah.

Shane Jackson (j’17) is a sports reporter at the Manhattan Mercury in Manhattan, Kansas.

Amie Just (j’17) placed sixth in the inaugural Associated Press Sports Editors college sports journalist contest. Entrants had to send a portfolio that included a feature, breaking news story, enterprise story, multimedia or video, and a wild-card entry. Read the story. Just also has accepted a job at the Missoulian in Missoula, Montana, covering the University of Montana football team. Read the story.

Katie Keleher, (j’17), has accepted a job at KIFI-TV in Idaho Falls, Idaho, a News-Press Gazette station.

Tiffany Littler (j’17) is a breaking news producer for KSNT News in Topeka

Candace Miller (j’17) has been hired as a consulting analyst at Cerner Corporation in Kansas City, Missouri.

Megan Pruett (j’17) is a field marketing coordinator at MMGY Global in Kansas City, Missouri.

Sydney Shepherd (j’17) has been hired as a content and social media specialist for Keystone Automotive.

Alec Voss (j’17) is a public relations intern at FleishmanHillard in Kansas City, Missouri.

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