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Summer 2005 | Volume 28, Number 2 | Footnotes



RUTH BEECHICK has written numerous books, and her most recent, Heart and Mind: What the Bible Says About Learning, was released by Mott Media in 2004. Ruth resides in Golden, Colorado.


HAROLD BLACKWELL and his wife, Shirley, live in Mesa, Arizona, during the winter and in Seattle during the summer. Harold recently received special recognition by the U.S. Congress and the people of Normandy, France, for his part in their liberation during World War II. In July 1944, under the orders of Brigadier General Teddy Roosevelt Jr., Harold, then an Army captain commanding the Anti-Aircraft Battery, gave support to the U.S. 4th Infantry Division, allowing the troops to capture hedgerow after hedgerow with a minimum of casualties. At the time, he was presented the Bronze Star Medal, and in 2004 he received the Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition and the Jubilee of Liberty Medal.


RICHARD OLSON taught English at Highline Community College in Des Moines, Washington, after earning a doctorate from the University of Washington. He is now retired. His wife, MILLIE MCCORMICK OLSON, taught in the Highline School District and tutored in the district’s Indian Education Program. They have three adult children, including DAVID OLSON ’83 and RICHARD OLSON JR. ’85, as well as six grandchildren. Richard and Millie make their home in Des Moines, where they attend Midway Covenant Church.


KEN EDGAR and IRENE PETTENGILL EDGAR ’64 recently returned to the state of Washington for a few months between projects with Wycliffe Associates. Their latest project was in Oaxaca, Mexico.

Zig-Zag Career Path Leads Biology Alumnus to His Life's Best Work

While a freshman at SPC, ALLEN TURNER '61 took an aptitude test that predicted he'd excel as a lawyer. “But being oppositional,” he says, laughing, “I became a biology major.” Once he graduated, Allen used that biology degree in the medical field, but he wasn't happy in his work.

By 1970, he changed course, earned a master's degree in anthropology from the University of Kentucky, began teaching at Southern Utah State College, and worked with the Kaibab Paiutes of Arizona in what became an award-winning community development program. Still working on his educational goals, Allen then earned a doctorate and taught at Idaho State University. He also did anthropological work for the Shoshone-Bannock Tribe on legal water-rights claims.

Through his work with Native Americans, he realized that indigenous groups needed access to both anthropological and legal expertise. Yet few lawyers were also anthropologists and few anthropologists were lawyers. “So I stepped into the middle and decided to go into law,” he says.

Since earning his J.D. in 1989, Allen has combined both fields, working with Native American groups in Arizona, Idaho, Utah, and California, even receiving awards for his efforts. Today, although semi-retired and living in Jalisco, Mexico, with his wife, Allen continues as tribal attorney and anthropologist for the Gabrieleno Band of Mission Indians of California.

“That aptitude test I took at Seattle Pacific turned out to be right,” says Allen. “I took the crooked path, but service to others is my passion.”


PAUL FLEISCHMANN is co-founder and president of the National Network of Youth Ministries (NNYM), an organization that will celebrate its 25th anniversary in January 2006. Paul and his wife, Toni, make their home in San Diego, California. They have two adult sons, one who works part time for NNYM, and one grandson.

JOHN PEARSON is retiring as president/ CEO of Christian Management Association (CMA) at the end of 2005. The resident of San Clemente, California, served as the organization’s CEO for 11 years. After retiring from CMA, he plans to launch a consulting firm, John Pearson and Associates, to serve nonprofit ministries, churches, and associations.


CAROL STRONG TOULOUSE, a resident of Port Orchard, Washington, teaches eighth and ninth graders at Kalles Junior High in Puyallup, Washington. She has two sons who live in Belgrade, Montana, and work in computer-related careers. Her daughter, JENNIFER TOULOUSE PHINNEY ’00, teaches in the Auburn (Washington) School District. Carol completed her master’s degree in educational leadership at SPU in 2002, and enjoys walking, traveling, and playing with her granddaughters in Montana.


JERRY HANSON and his wife, BRENDA COBB HANSON ’72, have moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, where Jerry is the national director for Child Evangelism Fellowship of Canada.

ROBIN RUBBO-SCRANTON received a master’s degree in health care administration in August 2004 from Central Michigan University. She is a quality control improvement professional in the Fleet and Family Medicine Directorate at the Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth, Virginia. Robin lives in Virginia Beach.


ALICE ALDRIDGE O’GRADY lives in Long Beach, California, with her husband and son. After 12 years as a library media specialist, Alice now teaches high school English at a school with 4,500 students. She recently published a children’s book, Eleanor’s Story: From Pennsylvania to Oregon, 1919, which is based on her grandparents’ move across the country during the influenza epidemic. The main character, Eleanor, is loosely based on her mother, ELEANOR BALDWIN ALDRIDGE ’44.


LINDA VANDLAC SMITH received the 2004 Puget Sound Energy Excellence in Teaching Award in June 2004. She is a speech instructor at Skagit Valley (Washington) College (SVC), where she has taught since 1989. The award recognized her innovation in the classroom, including development of a successful international communications course. Linda is department chair, and was interim coordinator of SVC’s Center for Learning and Teaching for two quarters in 2004. She lives in Burlington, Washington, with her two sons.


LISA ANDERSON NOLLAND makes her home in Bristol, England. Her published doctoral thesis is A Victorian Feminist Christian: Josephine Butler, the Prostitutes and God (Paternoster, 2004). Lisa is a chaplain at an inner-city secondary school in Bristol, where she is researching the intersection of Christian faith and morality with contemporary sexual culture and practice. Her husband, John, is the academic dean of Trinity College in Bristol. The couple has one daughter.


NANCY LUDEMAN LURKER and her husband, Dean, adopted a daughter from China in April 2004. They have been married for 15 years, and live with their two daughters in Peapack, New Jersey, where they are active in their community. The family writes that they “love living in New Jersey! Frequent trips home to Seattle and Oregon, where Nancy’s family still lives, help assuage her longings for the Pacific Northwest.” Nancy is currently CEO and president of ImpactRx, a health care information technology company.


DAN GEORGE and his family have relocated from DuPont, Washington, to the Black Forest region of Germany. There, he and his wife, Ellen, are serving on a one-year mission as teachers at Black Forest Academy. Dan writes, “Over 90 percent of the students we teach are missionary children from Europe, Central Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. It has been an incredible experience. We feel our job is critical to keep doctors, Bible translators, church planters, etc., in the field spreading the good news of the gospel.” Dan and Ellen have two children.


JEANNINE HARBER is the program director at Lutherwood Camp and Retreat Center in Bellingham, Washington. She resides in Bellingham.


CURTIS “RUSTY” FINCH spent five years in Alaska, but is now living in Richville, Michigan. After earning a Ph.D., he became the superintendent of schools in Reese, Michigan. He writes, “There isn’t a greater service than changing kids’ lives through education.” Rusty and his wife, Angie, have a son and a daughter.

MARK POWELL and his wife, Kathleen, are proud parents of two daughters under age 3. Mark writes that their daughters enjoy singing the ancient hymns of Orthodox worship every Sunday at Holy Apostles Greek Orthodox Church in Kenmore, Washington, where the family attends. Both Mark and Kathleen, who live in Edmonds, Washington, are choir and worship leaders in their parish.


GREG MORRIS, his wife, Julie, and their three children live in Mozambique, Africa, where Greg and Julie are missionaries with Wycliffe Bible Translators. They are in their fifth year of a Bible translation project among the Lolo, a people group of 100,000 who live in a remote area of Northern Mozambique.

DAN OHLMAN is a realtor with Coldwell Banker in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He is in his 14th year as a discussion leader with Bible Study Fellowship International in Spokane, and serves on the board of directors for his neighborhood, Prairie Meadows. Dan and his wife, Stacey, live in Post Falls, Idaho, with their two daughters.

RANDY OWEN is a head and neck surgeon in New York City, where he lives with his wife, Jane, and infant son. Jane is an obstetrician/gynecologist, also practicing in New York City.


RENA IRWIN received the Dorothy Gannon Award from the Washington State Healthcare Human Resource Association (WSHHRA). She is vice president of human resources at Swedish Medical Center in Seattle and has 35 years of experience in the field in Washington state. Over the years, Rena has served in leadership roles within WSHHRA and the American Association of Human Resources Associations.


GEORGE ALEXANDER is a data network engineer for Cingular Wireless. His wife, JENNIFER ELLIS ALEXANDER, is a medical technologist in the laboratory at Overlake Hospital Medical Center in Bellevue, Washington. They have been married for nine years and live in North Bend, Washington, with their baby daughter.

JULIE AHRNSBRAK BLANCAFLOR and her family have moved to San Antonio, Texas. Her husband, Noel, is a chaplain in the U.S. Air Force, and Julie is a stay-at-home mom to their two young daughters.


LESLIE MEIK WISDOM is the festival director for the Festival of Family Farms, a Skagit County, Washington, event that connects the public to the agricultural community. She and her husband, TONY WISDOM ’90, reside in Burlington, Washington.


SHELLEY COLLINS has received a doctor of musical arts degree in flute performance and pedagogy from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She teaches flute at SPU, directs the SPU Flute Ensemble, maintains a private flute studio, and is president of the Seattle Flute Society. Shelley resides in Seattle.

Sacred Music Chorale Brings Three Alumni Together in Harmony

BRAD KLOSTREICH ’94 served as interim music director for Seattle’s University Presbyterian Church (UPC) before accepting his current position as music director at Marine View Presbyterian Church in Tacoma, Washington. Ten months after leaving UPC, two of his former choir members, KATHRYN JORDAN PEARSON ’57 and JAY PEARSON ’57, called. They and others wanted to begin an a capella choir that would sing a challenging repertoire of sacred music, and they knew Brad would be the ideal conductor.

“The way Kathy worded it was very clear,” Brad recalls, laughing. “All they wanted was someone to choose and conduct the music.” The Pearsons and other members would handle the group’s day-to-day operations.

Brad agreed, and 20 singers showed up at the first rehearsal. Now six years later, the Sacred Music Chorale (SMC) has 55 members who belong to 25 different churches from Everett to Tacoma. Brad leads the vocalists in numerous performances each year, including three Christmas concerts, three spring concerts, and several benefit concerts. Last spring, the chorale performed music by Brahms, Handel, André Thomas, and many other composers in venues throughout the Puget Sound. This summer, they toured the Olympic Peninsula. “We’re now branching out a little bit,” says Brad. “Next year we may even go out of state.”

Adds Kathryn, “This music engages your mind as well as your heart, and it engages both singers and listeners.”

Brad and his wife, JOAN BAUMAN KLOSTREICH ’95, live in Tacoma with their daughter and son. Kathryn and Jay Pearson live in Mill Creek, Washington.


KEVIN BERG has published a book, A Life With Purpose. Born with cerebral palsy, Kevin wrote an autobiography of his first 30 years, detailing his struggles and the ways in which God has helped him. He is now a motivational speaker. Kevin lives in Seattle with his wife, MELINDA CONLEY BERG ’98, their baby daughter, and young nephew.

TRACY JOHNSON and his wife, JESSICA GILL JOHNSON ’98, live in Waltham, Massachusetts. Both recently received their master of divinity degrees from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts.

PAUL SHRINER is the area director for Young Life in Washington’s Jefferson County, and is working to “restart” Young Life on the Olympic Peninsula. Paul and his wife, Jessica, reside with their two sons in Port Townsend, Washington.

MELANIE STUM passed the Washington Bar Exam in February 2005 after her graduation from Gonzaga University School of Law. The Spokane Valley, Washington, resident now practices family law in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Melanie has one son.

ROD YOUNG lives in Silverdale, Washington, where he has a view of the Olympic Mountains. He works at Kitsap Mental Health Center as an in-home child and family counselor.


MICHAEL MEDORO is executive vice president and chief operating officer for Easter Seals Arizona, where he oversees 17 programs for individuals with disabilities throughout Arizona, Utah, and soon New Mexico. He is also the founding chairman for Miracle League of the East Valley, a local nonprofit organization set up to construct adaptive baseball fields and league play for children ages 3–19 with disabilities. Michael recently divorced and lives in Mesa, Arizona, with his young daughter.


ILSE INGEBORORG DEPRIEST is an emergency room nurse at the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle. She and her husband, James, live in Redmond, Washington.

ALYSSA RITTER MORGAN and her husband, Chad, moved from Eastern Washington to Mill Creek, Washington, in June 2004. They own and operate two marketing companies. They enjoy spending time with their son and traveling.

JENNIFER VANDERMEER NORTH completed her master’s degree in nursing education and clinical nurse specialist degree in family health at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego, California, in April 2005. Her husband, Samuel, is a U.S. naval officer stationed in Everett, Washington. The couple moved back to the Seattle area from San Diego in April.

DAN RANDALL is taking a year off from the master of divinity program at Duke Divinity School in order to serve in Paris, France, as the youth and young adult pastor for the American Church, an English-speaking congregation located near the Eiffel Tower. He writes, “My education seems to follow a more scenic route, yet I thank God for allowing me to see so much along the way.”


DUSTIN TAYLOR completed the eight-week U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Illinois. His preparation included classroom study, practical instruction on naval customs, first aid, firefighting, water safety and survival, and shipboard and aircraft safety.


HEATHER HILL earned a master’s degree in social work from Roberts Wesleyan College in May 2004 and now lives in Georgetown, Delaware. She works as an adoption placement counselor for Catholic Charities in Georgetown.

HELEN ONO is working on a master’s degree in counseling psychology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. She lives in Deerfield, Illinois.


Northwest Native Takes “JET” After Graduation and Visits the World

Soon after JENNIFER SCHROEDL ’02 graduated from SPU in 2002, she joined the Japanese Exchange and Teaching Programme (JET) on a one-year contract to teach English. By July, she was living in Kure, Japan, and embarking on a three-year adventure that included visits to 13 countries.

While assisting the lead teacher at her Japanese-based school, Jennifer worked with elementary- and junior-high-aged students, helping them with pronunciation, and planning games and activities. Her favorite part of the school day? Lunchtime. “That’s when the students really opened up, and I learned things about them and connected with them,” she says. That’s also when she practiced her own Japanese language skills — sometimes with unintended results. When students asked her what she’d done the night before, “I said I’d washed and broken my dishes!”

Jennifer also used her time out of the United States to visit other countries, including Spain, India, Italy, Australia, and nine more. “Every time I visited a different country, it opened up a whole new world and made me want to travel even more,” she says.

After extending her one-year JET contract twice, Jennifer returned home to Silverdale, Washington, in late July. “If you had told me three-and-a-half years ago that I would live in Japan, I would have said, ‘No way, José!’” says the Pacific Northwest native. “But I know that it was God’s plan to take me there, and I’ve felt him working in my life more than ever.”


LEIF BOSTROM and his wife, CARYN NOWAK BOSTROM ’01, live in Danville, California, with their baby son. Leif teaches kindergarten and coaches high school and club soccer. Caryn coaches a swim team.


JENNIFER BOYD serves in the Peace Corps in Paraguay, South America, where she works on sustainable agriculture in a local village. She lives in a small pump house that is sometimes “visited” by tarantulas. Jennifer returned to Seattle in June for a visit.

AMY SALINS lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and works with a ministry called Mission Year. “I am thankful for family and friends who are supporting me this year,” she writes. “Philly is a challenging city, and I’m glad to be shining Jesus’ light to the drug dealers, homeless, single mothers, children, and many others of this city.”

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