Response Magazine

Find out what your classmates are doing: Spring 2019 class notes

Have an update you want to share with the SPU community? Email us at response@spu.edu.

1950s

Gerald “Jerry” Merrill ’57, along with his son Doug Merrill ’87 and grandson Spencer Merrill ’17, were featured in the November 2018 Inside Wenatchee Schools newsletter in an article titled, “Three Generations of Teachers at WHS.” They shared about their journeys to become teachers, as well as memorable moments in the classroom. They all teach STEM subjects, and Jerry also served on the Seattle Pacific University Board of Trustees from 1983 to 2000, where he was chair of the Academic Affairs Committee. Another of Jerry’s grandsons at WHS is Caleb Wirth, also part of the STEM teaching dynasty, and he is the son of Catherine “Cathy” Merrill ’81. Cathy, Doug, Spencer, and Caleb are children and grandchildren of Wilberta Crook Merrill ’52, daughter of WILBER CROOK, a 1907–08 student at Seattle Pacific Seminary, then called Seattle Seminary.   

1980s

Valerie Rader Schultz ’82 is the director of Emergency Services at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center in Enid, Oklahoma. Representing the hospital, she is involved in committees and activities including serving as vice-chair of the Regional Trauma Advisory Board. She is a member of the Oklahoma State Stroke Symposium Advisory Committee and is involved with the Oklahoma Trauma and Emergency Response Committee. She is also an active member of the Emergency Nurses Association. On Jan. 21, 2018, Valerie married Jerry Schultz in Enid, Oklahoma, where the couple now lives.

ANDREW MCDONALD ’88 and VERLAINE STONER MCDONALD ’87 recently published Paul Rusch in Postwar Japan: Evangelism, Rural Development, and the Battle Against Communism (University Press of Kentucky, 2018). Verlaine is a professor of communication at Berea College, and is currently working on her fourth book. Andrew is a journalist and a media consultant for local government. They reside in Berea, Kentucky, with their two daughters.

Susie Sonntag Crosby ’89 taught in the Shoreline (Washington) School District for 28 years, and now teaches PE, music, art, and technology at a kindergarten center in the Mukilteo (Washington) School District. She is also a blogger at susiecrosby.com and an author of a devotional book, Just One Word: 90 Devotions to Invite Jesus In (Harvest House, 2018). Susie and her family live in Seattle.

1990s

Karen Lottis ’94 was featured in The Wickenburg Sun after opening her clinic, Optimal Hormones Medical, LLC, in January 2018. The clinic has two Arizona locations, in Scottsdale and in Wickenburg.  With a bachelor’s degree from Seattle Pacific University and a master’s degree and doctorate from the University of New Mexico, Karen has been a health care professional for more than 25 years. She focuses on incorporating natural healing alternatives in addition to prevention and quality-of-life factors. Karen lives in Wickenburg.

Gordon Capp ’98 is an assistant professor of social work at California State University, Fullerton. After graduating from SPU, he taught elementary and middle school students in Washington and Colorado, then worked as a clinical social worker in California for seven years. Gordon earned his master of social work degree from California State University, Long Beach, and a doctorate from the University of Southern California. He lives in Buena Park, California.

Katie Long ’99 was appointed vice president of legal for Chef Software Inc., an award-winning software company. She received her juris doctorate from Seattle University School of Law, and lives in Seattle.

2000s

Terra Tamer Mattson ’01 has released her first book InCourage: Raising Daughters Rooted in Grace (Living Wholehearted Publishing, 2018). Terra and her husband, Jeff Mattson ’99, established a counseling and leadership development firm called Living Wholehearted, LLC. As a clinical director, licensed marriage and family therapist, and licensed professional counselor, Terra runs a private practice, speaks, writes, and leads retreats across the nation. She is the founder of Courageous Girls, LLC. Terra, Jeff, and their two daughters live in Sherwood, Oregon.

Bob Danielle MS-ISM ’02 was named campus director for the University of Phoenix’s western Washington campus. Before coming to the University of Phoenix, Bob worked with high-ranking civilian and Navy personnel at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard to support professional development initiatives by the DOD/NAVSEA. His career has extended over several decades, during which he’s held senior-level positions working in the telecommunications, media, technology, and higher education sectors. A long-time Washington resident, Bob also serves as a board member of Communities in Schools and was chair of the Diversity Commission for the City of Federal Way, Washington, from 2010 to 2013. Bob and his wife, Linda, live in Edgewood, Washington.

Brad Smith ’07 is a special-education teacher in the Battle Ground School District, and has recently published the book A Special Education in Anxiety (CreateSpace, 2018), a fictional story about a year in the life of a special-education teacher dealing with social anxiety disorder. Brad began writing to process his own thoughts and feelings as he dealt with anxiety in his life. He and his wife live in Vancouver, Washington.   

2010s

Ruth Eitemiller ’10 has received the Melissa Hines Backstage Award for her contributions to the Seattle theatre community. Ruth has spent the last 10 years in Seattle working with companies such as ACT, Book-It Repertory Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, The 5th Avenue Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, and New Century Theatre Company. Ruth also teaches stage management at Seattle University. She lives in Seattle.

Jamie Tucker Senkubuge ’11 joined her father, Pat Tucker, at Water from Wine, the nonprofit he founded, after she returned from East Africa in 2016. The nonprofit produces wine from cabernet sauvignon grapes planted on the family farm in 2002, donating the proceeds to charitable organizations. One hundred percent of the revenue from each bottle of Horse Heaven Hills cabernet sauvignon and rosé help fund 12 water groups, including Water1st International and Water Access Now. From January 2017 to January 2019, Water from Wine has provided more than $237,000 to fund clean-water projects. The winery is located in Paterson, Washington, with a tasting room in Leavenworth.

Adam Snitker ’13 is a graduate student at the University of Montana’s W.A. Franke College of Forestry & Conservation and has become one of the first two graduate students to receive a Conservation Connect Fellowship from the National Forest Foundation. Adam’s research explores how society navigates food and water availability in a changing climate. Adam resides in Missoula, Montana.

Ariana Andres ’16 recently opened the surf boutique Seas + Sidewalks in the Micronesia Mall on her home island, Guam. She opened the boutique with her parents, Alex and Christine, and brother, Leif Eric, in November 2018. Ariana wanted to serve the island by providing a place for everyone to shop that was size inclusive, as well as ethically and sustainably conscious. Along with quality clothing, the boutique also carries high performance water sports equipment. The name, Seas + Sidewalks, originated from wanting to provide casual, comfortable, yet stylish clothing and accessories. She also plans to create and sell her own fashion line and will make the clothes available at the boutique sometime next year. Ariana lives in Dededo, Guam.

Edgar Soares ’18 now works for Stantec as an electrical engineer in Lynnwood, Washington. He supports military, as well as public and private projects. Edgar lives with his wife, Juliane, and two children in Lynnwood.

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