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LORRAINE REED JONES ’56 is the author of As I Remember It — A Mostly Snohomish Memoir (Snohomish Publishing Company, 2014). The memoir tells family stories about growing up in Snohomish, Washington, during the ’40s and ’50s. Lorraine, 77, taught kindergarten and second grade in the Snohomish School District for 30 years. She and her husband, Richard, have been married 58 years and live in the Warm Beach Senior Community near Stanwood, Washington.


ELEANOR COREY GUDERIAN ’66 is the author of Sticks, Stones & Songs (WestBowPress, 2014), a multigenerational memoir about her childhood as one of 10 Corey children growing up in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest. A tale told in three chronicles, it begins in 1937 when Father Corey buys a deserted grange hall destined to become the family residence. It became home, says the author, “to a cast of characters.” Eleanor is no stranger to adventure. The mother of three and grandmother of seven has enjoyed careers in music, leadership, and consulting that spanned 24 years in Ecuador and 15 years in the United States. She and her husband, RON GUDERIAN ’67, live in Stanwood, Washington.


ROBERT “BOB” SLOAT ’75, a graduate of Harvard Law School, is an attorney and member of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Music Committee. His job is to help recruit and sort through the many marching band applications and audition videos from high schools across the country that want to be represented in the internationally televised, 5.5-mile long Rose Parade. He and the other committee members are gearing up for the 2016 Parade, for which applications are due May 31. Bob is especially seeking excellent bands from Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming (although Alaska’s only marching band appeared in the parade this year and is therefore ineligible in 2016). Now married to elementary school librarian SUSAN “SUE” FISCHER SLOAT ’75, Bob vividly remembers his choir tour of East Asia with choir director and Professor of Music Philip Mack. The Sloats live in Pasadena, California.


Steadfast Servant

Federal Reserve Vice President Honored With 2015 Medallion Award

Gordon Werkema '80Medallion Award winner Gordon Werkema ’80 transferred from a small college in New England and trekked all the way across the country to attend Seattle Pacific University.

“It was divinely inspired,” Gordon says. “I never looked back.”

The travel didn’t stop there for the political science and economics major, who spent time in Washington, D.C. through SPU’s American Studies program and met his wife Barbara on a weekend trip to a cattle ranch in Elby, Washington. They square-danced, an activity prohibited by SPU’s lifestyle expectations at the time.

After graduation, Gordon was hired by the Seattle office of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, and has since spent time at Johns Hopkins University and in San Francisco and Los Angeles. Today he resides in Chicago, where he is the First Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, and Product Director of the Federal Reserve System’s National Consumer Relations and Support Office.

With 34 years of experience at the Fed, Gordon oversees the operation and services, as well as 1,500 employees, at local and national levels. His responsibilities include monetary policy, financial stability and supervision, operations strategy, and risk management.

It’s a job that keeps him traveling. He makes it to Seattle at least once a year and has played an active role on the Seattle Pacific Foundation Board since 2000.

The travel also helps him keep up with classmates from SPU, who he meets for family vacations.

“It’s amazing that after 30 to 35 years, we stay in touch regularly,” Gordon says. “They’re lifelong friends from Seattle Pacific.” KELSEY CHASE


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DANIEL “DAN” ORTIZ ’81, an independent in his first term in the Alaskan State Legislature, represents the 36th District. An educator for 32 years, Dan taught high school students in the subjects of U.S. history, debate, economics, and current issues. He also ran a youth summer jobs program for Ketchikan Indian Corporation. Dan lives in Ketchikan, Alaska.

RANDY DIXON ’82 is managing director for Colliers International—Sacramento and works with real estate brokers to improve their business success. Possessing more than 22 years of experience in commercial real estate, Randy says his psychology degree from SPU and master’s degree in clinical psychology from Seattle University have been a large part of his success in business. Much of his time is spent buildng a successful work environment motivating people to maximize their potential and have fun. Randy lives in Sacramento, California.

JAMES HOFF ’87 is an IT consultant and president of ACE Internet Services of California, a Microsoft Partner offering computer networking and cloud computing. The economics major, his wife, Natalie, and their son, Jonah, live in San Diego, California.

TODD PETTYS ’88 is associate dean for faculty and the H. Blair and Joan V. White chair in civil litigation at The University of Iowa College of Law. Prior to joining the faculty in 1999, Todd was in private practice with Perkins Coie, LLP, in Seattle, and a law clerk in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. He lives in Iowa City, Iowa.

DANIEL “DAN” RICHARDS ’88 is a real estate agent with RE/MAX Northwest Realtors and the author of The Problem With Not Being Scared of Monsters (Boyds Mill Press, 2014). He succeeded in placing his picture book with a national publisher, he says, by “staying focused” and weathering the inevitable rejection, similar to getting started in his real estate practice. The psychology major found fear of failure to be a powerful motivator. Dan resides in Bothell, Washington.

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SHANNON STOWELL ’90, president of the Adventure Travel Trade Association, got his start after SPU at the National Marine Fisheries Service as a fisheries observer in Alaska. He worked for the Colorado Division of Wildlife and spent eight years at an environmental testing laboratory as a chemist and manager. What followed was the co-founding of, an outdoor gear retailer. Six years later, he took the helm at ATTA, now an international association of more than 1,000 members and dozens of national tourism boards. He bought the struggling organization in part by selling a first-edition copy of Moby Dick he had purchased for $2 at a garage sale. The ATTA provides education, marketing, connectivity, and events for the global adventure travel industry. Shannon is co-author of Riding the Hulahula to the Arctic Ocean (National Geographic, 2008) about extraordinary adventures. He lives in Monroe, Washington.

MELISSA CLARK ’93 is a mortgage loan officer at The Advisors Mortgage Company in Yakima, Washington. She has 21 years of banking and lending experience and lives in Yakima.

JENNIFER DAMM BEST ’94 is associate dean for graduate medical education at the University of Washington School of Medicine. The MD oversees educational programming for approximately 1,300 trainees in more than 100 residency and fellowship programs. At the same time, she is associate program director for the internal medicine residency program and practices clinical hospital medicine at Harborview Medical Center. Jennifer is married to ERIC BEST ’95; they have two sons and live in Seattle.

JEFFREY “JEFF” LAYTON ’96, with his wife, Amanda Gatlin, owns and operates, a private tour and travel consulting firm. Their clientele are often people planning a road trip or wanting to complete an item on their bucket list, and their trip- planning resume includes their own three-month, around-the-world honeymoon. Jeff, a psychology major, was a professional tour guide for Trek America and Grand American Adventures. Jeff and Amanda have designed and led trips in Southeast Asia, Central America, Europe, and the U.S. They have personally visited more than 80 countries on all seven continents, as well as all 50 U.S. states. Their travel writing and photography have appeared in a variety of publications, including Alaska Airlines magazine and The Seattle Times. Jeff and Amanda live in Seattle with their son, Ian.

ALAN TURANSKI ’99, is president and beekeeper of GloryBee Foods Inc. He was profiled December 1, 2014, in The Register-Guard of Eugene, Oregon. Nominated for the “20 Under 40“ recognition for rising stars in the business community, Alan was lauded for his work increasing efficiency and sustainability at the family-owned, honey-based health food company. At the age of 15, he began work at GloryBee in production and shipping. He became operations manager in 2004, was named vice president in 2011, and became president in 2015. “I have a big passion for stewardship,” says Alan, whose company donates 1 percent of its honey and beekeeping sales to organizations that include the Oregon State University honeybee research lab. He lives in Springfield, Oregon.


Engineering Change

2015 Medallion Honoree Deploys Skills for Sustainability

DeBlois Fiess ’02As a student, Jeanette DeBlois Fiess ’02 designed a crosswalk detector to time the walk from Otto Miller Hall across Nickerson Street. Now, the Medallion Award winner designs training and guidance programs for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and led the nationwide USACE effort to update sustainability requirements. It’s that effort that led to her recognition by the White House as a 2013 Sustainability Hero.

Jeanette has worked for the Corps for over a decade and is currently the sustainability and energy program manager for the Northwest Division. Among her responsibilities are policy interpretation on everything from LED lighting to storm water conservation, and retrofitting old buildings to meet new requirements.

An electrical engineering major at Seattle Pacific, Jeanette knew she didn’t want to spend her days in the lab.

“Sustainable energy was already something I was interested in, but I didn’t know I could pair it with a job,” she says. “Now a big part of my career is developing training and interacting on a face-to-face level.”

Because the engineering program at SPU was small, Jeanette says it formed a community that’s still connected today. It’s even how she met her husband, Matthew Fiess ’02, who took her to a SPU theatre department play for their first date.

Jeanette says she thrives on being busy. While at SPU, she served as a student ministry coordinator and a Falconette, played clarinet in the orchestra, worked at the reference desk in the library, and taught Sunday school at First Free Methodist Church.

Today, that full life continues. Jeanette works part time for the Corps, counsels current SPU engineering students, and remains involved at FFMC, where she and Matthew attend with their young son, Cameron. KELSEY CHASE


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HEATHER EGGEN BOWMAN ’01 has been named partner at the civil defense law firm of Bodyfelt Mount in Portland, Oregon. She focuses on employment litigation, professional malpractice defense, and insurance coverage. Heather directs the firm’s sustainability initiatives, is a professional mentor for Lewis & Clark Law School, and holds leadership positions with the Oregon Association of Defense Counsel and Oregon Women Lawyers. Named a Rising Star in the 2014 issue of Oregon Super Lawyers magazine, she is former executive articles editor for the Pacific Rim Law & Policy Journal. The English major, who earned her JD at the University of Washington School of Law, lives in Portland with her husband, JIM BOWMAN ’99.

JENNIFER HIGNELL WARTON ’02 is a pediatrician with Bend Memorial Clinic in Bend, Oregon. She is the daughter of a family doctor, sees herself as an advocate for children, and has volunteered to help with homeless adolescents, at-risk youth, and foster kids. Jennifer and her husband have three young sons and enjoy running, yoga, skiing, snowboarding, and that most challenging of all-season sports, parenting. The Wartons live in Bend.

BRENTON “BRENT” TAYET ’03 is a financial advisor with Edward Jones in Gig Harbor, Washington. Brent studied finance and marketing at SPU. He and his wife, KRISTEN PETERSEN TAYET ’03, reside in Gig Harbor with their two children, Oliver (5) and Evangeline (3), hopeful future Falcons.

CHARISSA J. HUFF ADAMS ’05 was cast last summer in The Reel Deal, a multi-platform reality show with actors, composers, directors, and their celebrity mentors charged with creating a film in one week. Charissa has acted in professional live theatre and co-starred on the TNT television show Leverage and NBC’s Grimm. The pursuit of her art has taken her to Europe to work with The Prague Playhouse, and to an educational theatre company which toured across the Czech Republic. Off-stage, Charissa lives in Long Beach, California.

KYLE EVANS ’05 and his wife, AMY HAMMANN EVANS ’05, are missionaries to the youth of Slovenia. Kyle is the youth pastor at a local church under the auspices of Josiah Venture, a Christian agency devoted to equipping young leaders to reach young people in Central and Eastern Europe with the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Evanses are involved in discipleship and leadership development. The couple and their two young sons, Ethan and Declan, moved from Redmond, Washington, to Slovenia.

PHILIP “SHARP SKILLS” JACOBS ’08 is the author of Accuracy: A Guide to Living Skillfully and Successfully in Today’s Crazy Times (Trafford, 2014). Passionate about equipping emerging leaders and correcting fuzzy thinking about God, Philip is the founder-owner of the REBEL Firm, Strong Legacy Publishing, and Sharp Skills Music, and assists in the development and implementation of energy efficiency programs with ICF (Inner City Fund) International. A singer, rapper, and music emcee, the business administration major lives in Long Beach, California.

SHEENA SPICER KALSO ’05 says she is “founder and boss lady” of The Invisible Hostess, an event staffing firm that began in 2006 and now has more than 45 employees helping hundreds of events flow smoothly every year. The Invisible Hostess won its fourth Best Day of Coordination honors for the 2014 Best of Bride Awards from Seattle Bride magazine. They are also launching an event venue, Legacy Studios, in Pioneer Square as of March 1. Sheena’s company is resident in Seattle, as are she and her husband, JASON KALSO ’05.

JESSIE KWAK ’05 and CHRISTINE SMITH ’05 are co-editors of Four Windows (, a year-long collaboration of four authors showcasing Seattle by writing four different novels in quarterly serial form. Seattle is seen in a story of resurrected ghosts and an unexpected possession which threaten the relationship between two sisters. The Seattle in the work of ALISHA KNAFF ’04 glimmers with curious beings most can’t see. IAN SMITH, who attended SPU in 2003–04, embroidered his Seattle with haunting collisions of past and present. Fourth collaborator Andrew Gaines pictures Seattle as a futuristic post-revolutionarydystopia. Jessie lives in Portland, Oregon, and Christine lives in Seattle.

RODNEY “BEN” STILING ’07 manager of global trade compliance for and a licensed customs broker by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. His father is SPU Associate Professor of History ROD STILING. Ben lives in Lake Forest Park, Washington, with his wife and two children.

LUKE DAINING ’08 has a dental practice in Lynnwood, Washington, along with his wife and hygienist, Gina. While in dental school at the University of Michigan, Luke and Gina organized three dental mission trips to Honduras that included as many as 20 dental students working alongside Honduran dentists to help those without access to care. In October 2014, the Dainings went on a dental mission trip to the Philippines, their trip graciously sponsored by a generous patient. “Sometimes God’s will is vague,” Luke says, “at other times it just slaps you upside the head.” They and their team of 23 people treated more than 250 people in five days. The Dainings live in Seattle.

DANIEL “DAN” PRICE ’08, founder and CEO of Gravity Payments, was “Entrepreneur of 2014” by Entrepreneur magazine and appeared on the cover of the January 2015 issue. He was honored with this award for his commitment to make financial services fair for independent businesses. He has disrupted the payments industry by lowering many of the costs and headaches associated with credit card processing. Dan, who started the business in his college dorm room, lives and works in Seattle, and serves more than 12,000 customers nationwide.


AVA VAN ’12 is the communications assistant and fill-in public information officer for the City of Snoqualmie, Washington. When Ava was a student at SPU, she worked as the news and media relations assistant in the Office of University Communications and interned at KING 5’s Evening Magazine. The former Miss Seattle Teen USA resides in Snoqualmie.

PETER CLYDE ’13 is a PCB design electrical engineer for Monsoon Solutions Inc. and founder of Orfos, a company that produces the Orfos Flare, one of the world’s safest and brightest bicycle lights. Featuring 360-degree visibility, USB charging, and 100 percent waterproofing, the light is made in the U.S. and rapidly surpassed its Kickstarter funding goal by raising $157,000. Now it is on the market and has already received thousands of orders worldwide. Peter graduated cum laude and is married to KAYLA SANDERS CLYDE ’11. They live in Kirkland, Washington.

CHARIS JONES MCCOY ’11 met her husband JOSHUA “JOSH” MCCOY ’12 during freshman orientation for the University Scholars program at SPU. He is in medical school at California’s Loma Linda University, and Charis is a nurse, studying to become a nurse practitioner. They live in Loma Linda, California.

MICHAEL PIPER ’11, an Army specialist, has graduated from basic combat training at Fort Jackson in Columbia, South Carolina, and from Airborne Training in Fort Benning, Georgia. Michael is married to BRITTNEY FORTUNE PIPER ’12.

MELISSA REESER POULIN, MFA ’13, is co-editor of Winged: New Writing on Bees (Poulin Publishing, 2014). The book is a creative response to unprecedented honey bee hive abandonment, or Colony Collapse Disorder, in poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Melissa has also co-managed organic farms and served as managing editor of Boneshaker: A Bicycling Almanac. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

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