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2022 Class Notes
Arlene (Simms) Degonia ’57, of Hillsboro, MO, is a 2021 recipient of the Crystal City School System Hall of Fame honor, where she taught for 33 years.
Charles Wright ’62, of Altoona, FL, is enjoying retirement in Florida.
Joseph Reid ’65, of Basking Ridge, NJ, enjoys fixing up home repairs for elderly residents.
Thomas Ganahl ’66, of Scottsdale, AZ, is enjoying the warmer life of the desert in Arizona with his wife, four adult children and seven grandchildren. Life is good!
Phyllis (Crites) Hansen ’67, of Billings, MT, says her degree in vocational home economics has served her well in the last 55 years of her career. She began her career as a junior high home economics teacher. She and her husband moved due to his job and Phyllis taught at a variety of schools, did substitute teaching and taught migrant wives adult education, cooking and sewing. They settled in Billings, MT in 1991 and she eventually became a service agent for her state university, directing the county expanded food and nutrition program serving citizens of limited income to fix nutritious meals to their families and children. She shares that the ride has been wonderful thanks to the great SEMO professors especially Grace Hoover and Mildred Mussey.
Jerry Durham ’68, of Stockton, IL,retired as chancellor of Allen College in 2018 after more than 12 years of service. Jerry served as interim president of SoutheastHealth College of Nursing and Health Sciences until May 2019. He serves as a peer reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission. Jerry has assumed a six-month appointment as interim director of the School of Nursing and Health Sciences at Illinois Wesleyan University.
Fred Crecelius ’69, of Fort Worth, TX, retired after 31 years as a Naval aviator. He joined Senior Executive Service in 2005 and served as deputy director, Navy Region Mid-Atlantic until July 2017. Now fully retired, Fred enjoys golf and working out at the gym.
Stephen Hefner ’70, of Irmo, SC, was inducted into the South Carolina Educator Hall of Fame on April 22, 2022.
Susan (Koeln) Koch ’70, of Agoura Hills, CA, is thankful for the wonderful years of opportunities she's had since graduating from Southeast 50 years ago. She taught for 16 years, was a school administrator for 13 years, and has been supervising student teachers as a clinical supervisor for the past eight years. She and her husband have been married for 49 years, and they share three sons and two granddaughters.
John Kopp ’70, of Plainfield, IL, and his wife Paula (Robinson) '72 celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in September 2021! Both are retired and love to travel.
David Michel ’70, of Charlottesville, VA, married Elizabeth (Betty) in 1995. He has a son in St. Louis, a stepson in Charlottesville, VA, and a stepdaughter in Colchester, CT.
Oran Morgan ’70, of Palm Bay, FL, and wife Peggy are now retired and their hobbies include attending Appalachian Music Festivals, bowling in leagues, bicycling, and singing for their church.
Pete Ponder ’70, of Chandler, AZ, is enjoying retirement.
Sandra (Wyman) Smith ’70 & ’78, of Lake Wales, FL, and Henry "Buck" Smith '72, '75 & '83 have traveled to 89 countries, sailed all the oceans and visited every continent. They will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary soon. After retiring from teaching, they relocated to Florida. Sandra & Buck thoroughly enjoy retirement and realize how blessed they are for the good education they both received at Southeast Missouri State University. They have great memories of SEMO and recall the wonderful friends they made at the University.
Pamela Gempel ’71, of St Louis, MO, is grateful for friends and family of choice who are helping her through health issues. Grateful for retirement!
Patrick Hillman ’71, of Cape Girardeau, MO, has traveled to 33 countries including six trips to Europe, 12 cruises, visits to all 50 states and enjoyed many trips to Branson, MO.
Romie Holland ’71, of Woodland, CA, retired after 35 years as a family physician at Woodland Clinic Medical Group. He enjoys traveling, his nine grandkids, baking, and working with non-profit organizations.
Susan (Noyes) James ’71, of Sikeston, MO, began as a teacher after graduating from SEMO. First at Bernie, MO, for five years and then Sikeston, MO, for 15 years. She ended her career with State Farm Insurance accumulating 22 years between Missouri and Illinois. She retired in 2013 and now lives near her two sons, daughter-in-law and two grandsons.
David Little ’71, of St Louis, MO, celebrated his 53rd wedding anniversary with wife Sandy.
Dennis Nail ’71, of Kennett, MO, was excited to participate in the class of 1971 50th anniversary activities at Homecoming 2021.
Mary Alice (Ortmann) Ryan ’71, of Kirkwood, MO, spent 38 years with St. Andrew's Resources for Senior Systems and her final 31 years, before retirement, as president/CEO.
Mark Trautwein ’71, of Festus, MO, has retired from teaching music after 45 years.
Linda Wells ’72, of Chesterfield, MO, enjoys playing and coaching softball and was inducted into the St. Louis Softball Hall of Fame as both a player and a coach for the St. Louis Hummers.
James Wilder ’76, of Springfield, MO, recently published a murder mystery novel called Murder at Morse Mill.
James Carman ’77, of Aubrey, TX, is now retired after 33 years of working at the Missouri Division of Youth Services. James has also published a book titled MEET GOD; An Introduction to the God of the Bible.
Christine (Valentine) Dickman ’77, of Cape Girardeau, MO, is glad to be living back in Missouri. She enjoyed her retirement by representing SEMO during college nights at high schools in her county in California when she lived there.
Vickie (Ray) Nunnery ’77, of Piggott, AR, retired after 14 years as a bookkeeper with an implement company. Before that she spent 27 years as an industrial engineer for an electric company. She and her husband, Jim, are enjoying retirement residing in Arkansas.
Jay Wolz ’77, of Cape Girardeau, MO, retired as SEMO's director of alumni relations in 2019. He then accepted the business editor position at the Southeast Missourian newspaper in Cape Girardeau, retiring (again) in October 2021. He and Kathy (Anderson) '79, who is a partner in the Cape Girardeau law firm of Cook, Barkett, Ponder & Wolz, have two daughters, both SEMO alums, and are expecting their fourth grandchild.
Russell Cook ’78, of Clarksville, TN, has retired from his job at the Tennessee State Library after 10 years of service.
Brad DePriest ’78, of Saint Louis, MO, retired in 2020 after a 21-year career in information technology. He now enjoys a relaxing life on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River. Brad remains involved with the SEMO Delta Chi fraternity chapter. Among other things, he and his wife enjoy cruising with their SEE-MO license plates.
LaDon (Williams) Dial ’78, of Lees Summit, MO, is enjoying the retired life after retiring twice. First in 2012 as a probation and parole officer of 15 years then a second in 2019 as a dispatcher for a retirement community.
Mark Schroepfer ’79, of Fenton, MO, is enjoying retirement.
Kurt Bauche ’80, of Farmington, MO, served as past president of the Missouri Bandmasters Association and Missouri Music Educators Association.
Mary McClenning ’80, of Florissant, MO, went to work at a children’s home in Illinois for a short time after graduating from SEMO. She then went into the U.S. Army as a veterinary food inspector specialist. While in the Army, Mary played softball on the traveling post team. After leaving the Army, she went to work for the Military Post Exchange system as a restaurant manager for eight years in Washington D.C.; Ft. Campbell, Kentucky; Andrews Air Force Base. After leaving the PX, she then went to work for the USDA Food Safety Inspection Service as a consumer safety inspector in 1998 and is currently working there but will retire in 2022.
Linda (Basler) Huck ’82, of Farmington, MO, was named recipient of the Phi Beta Mu Charles Emmons Outstanding Band Director award in 2014 and recipient of the Missouri Bandmasters Hall of Fame 2020.
Brent Patton ’82, of Foley, AL, has been retired since 2015 and near Gulf Shores to enjoy his retirement.
Phillip Milligan ’83, of Eureka, MO, has retired after 17 years as a band director and 12 as a middle school principal. Phil is currently an adjunct professor at Lindenwood University. He enjoys bicycling, photography, and playing music.
Tony Sullins ’88, of Bruno, MN, loved his time in Myers Hall. He met his wife Julie, a Dearmont girl, at Cape Rock.
Dawn (Froemsdorf) Roberts ’90, of Powell, TN, is celebrating her 28th year as a college professor of anatomy and physiology, the last 26 of those years at a state community college in Tennessee.
Eric Scott ’92, of Cape Girardeau, MO, has been music director at a Presbyterian Church in Cape Girardeau, MO, for about 20 years and has played trombone in the local municipal band for 40 years. He sings tenor in a southern gospel group, with which has produced four albums, and with a mixed quartet, together producing their first album. Eric has been director of a choir in Southeast Missouri and performed professionally as a duet with his best friend and keyboardist at casinos and similar places.
Lisa Moore ’93, of St Louis, MO, has taken a step back from being a correctional officer for St. Louis and decided to pursue a career within her major as a security officer at a hospital in the St. Louis area.
Kenny Sills ’94, of Florissant, MO, recently finished his second horror novel, Tattoo: The Soul Reaper. It takes place in Cape Girardeau, on and around campus and under it in the tunnel system! It's set back in the late 80s when Ken was a SEMO student. It's the second book in the Tattoo series. The first being, Tattoo: A Beautiful Sin.
Jim Stallings ’94, of Colorado Springs, CO, was awarded the Best Version Media Presidents Court of Honor Award in September 2020. This is a career achievement award. Only 10 people have achieved this honor.
Jason Banken ’95, of Dexter, MO, was elected this year to a third term as mayor of Dexter, MO. He also celebrated the 55th anniversary of Hickory Log restaurant, which he’s helped manage for 27 years.
Chrystal (Goings) Sander ’95, of Ballwin, MO, plays saxophone in various bands and venues in the St. Louis region. Chrystal offers private lessons to students in saxophone and clarinet. She also teaches a variety of courses in information technology.
Leslie (Nail) Quarles ’96, of Fenton, MO, shared that after working for MERS Goodwill for the past 15 years in a variety of roles, she recently accepted a new opportunity with the Institute of Community Inclusion, a training and research institute of UMass-Boston. She conducts training and outreach on the Employment First model for social service providers. Her daughter will be attending SEMO this fall and participating in the Southeast Marching Band.
Jeri (Tomaszewicz) Hicks ’97, of Paragould, AR, coordinated music festival activities and summer music camps for the University before becoming secretary in the University Budget Office.
Amber (Green) Barber ’98, of Lebanon, OR, started a new job in March.
Gretchen Greminger ’98, of Savannah, GA, was nominated and accepted into the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Leadership Academy for the cadre of 2022.
Bridgette (Epple) Kelch ’00, of Washington, MO, is the East Central College Foundation Executive Director.
Kelly (Lambing) Finke ’02, of O Fallon, IL, has been with AT&T for over 12 years and has recently accepted a promotion to director-compliance.
Jennifer (Preston) Janet ’02, of Perryville, MO, is celebrating her 20th year as a realtor. She has also recently earned the elite Accredited Land Consultant (ALC) designation now recognized as one of the top land sales professionals in the area. Earning this prestigious designation requires a commitment to professional growth and conducting business with integrity. Being a lover of the outdoors and land, this designation is a superb fit for enhancing Jennifer's career.
Kimberly (Hinkebein) Rueseler ’02, of Cape Girardeau, MO, is the assistant director/lead infant lab teacher at University School for Young Children. She has a daughter, Alyssa, who just graduated and will be attending SEMO. She also has a son, Remington, who will be in 7th grade.
Jeremy Wells ’02, of Takoma Park, MD, started a consultancy called Lived Heritage Studies. Lived Heritage Studies helps provide solutions that inform non-profit and private/public sector communication strategies, placemaking efforts, and policy for heritage places in the U.S. and internationally.
Derek Dickerson ’03, of Cape Girardeau, MO, has managed the technical media producers at KFVS since October 2020.
Jess Leggett ’03, of Orange, CA, was recently named creative director for the Division of Student Affairs, a role in which she is responsible for devising comprehensive communications and creative marketing strategies for the Office of the Vice Chancellor Student Affairs and a division of 35 units serving a student population of more than 30,000.
Rachel (Eldridge) Williamson ’03, of St Louis, MO, , her husband, Dan, and their son, Henric, recently relocated from Seattle to Kirkwood and are excited to be living in the Midwest again.
Daniel Boughton ’04, of South Bend, IN, was an understudy for two roles in The Elixir of Love with Lyric Opera of Chicago last fall. He is now a proud member of the American Guild of Musical Artists.
Cedrick Webb ’04, of Glen Carbon, IL, is the owner and CEO of Smart Digital, a company proud to help small businesses nationwide with their online presence. They also provide external scholarships allowing students to attend SEMO.
Jennifer (Nelson) Woolf ’04, ’10 of Cape Girardeau, MO, celebrated her 7th year working at SEMO in the office of Career Services where she helps students align their interests and abilities to majors and launch extraordinary careers. She and her husband, Rob Nelson '05, welcomed a son into the world in July 2020 and are loving every minute of watching him grow.
Elizabeth (Renner) Hess ’05, of Ruma, IL, started a new job as the director of marketing for Gibault Catholic High School in June 2020. This role is extra special to her as she is a Gibault graduate herself.
Ongart Kusolpaisit ’05, of St Louis, MO, started his master’s degree program at SEMO.
David Kasky ’07, of Colorado Springs, CO, moved to Colorado Springs, CO, after being assigned to the United States Air Force Academy
Diane (Riley) Sanders ’07, of Silver Spring, MD, and her husband, James, welcomed Claire Elise Sanders to their family on April 3, 2022.
Greg Soutiea ’07, of Spruce Head, ME, and his wife Lauren are the owners/operators of the coastal Maine bed and breakfast, the Craignair Inn and the acclaimed Causeway Restaurant. Located in the Mid-coast region of Maine, the 21-room inn and 95-seat restaurant accommodates guests from all over the world.
Ashley AuBuchon-Arcand ’08, of Holly Springs, NC, has shared her expertise and mentorship by leading an IBM-SEMO BlueHack event with Innovation students over the past two years. She also was the keynote speaker at the 2021 SEMO Power of Women Digital Summit where she talked about "Innovation & the Human Connection."
Twila (Patrick) Mason ’08, of Bloomfield, MO, is publishing poetry in a charity anthology called Because I F*cking Said So. It is for women, about women, and written by women.
EJ Foreman ’09, of Hanahan, SC, is a global alliances director for Skillsoft, a global HR software learning and development provider. He, his wife, Erica, and son, Edwin, recently welcomed a new baby girl, Ann Marie to the family.
Lindsey (Grissom) Limbaugh ’09, of Benton, MO, earned her master’s degree in teacher leadership.
Jennifer (King) Thomas ’09, of Atlanta, GA, has two children, Greyson and Remington.
Emily (Brown) Sampl ’10, of Lake St. Louis, MO, and her husband welcomed their third child, Gloria, in May.
Emily (Scherer) Glastetter ’11, of Arnold, MO, was named Teacher of the Year for Bernard Middle School in the Mehlville School District.
Darin Heisler ’12, of Chesterfield, MO, opened a new business model during the pandemic. Missouri's first food truck "garden" consisting of outdoor entertainment with live music and family-friendly movie nights. Farmers and makers markets, special events, and St. Louis beverages.
Mandy (Tucker) Kiefer ’12, of Perryville, MO, has worked for the Community Counseling Center in Perryville for eight years. This past summer, Mandy and her husband, Kurt, went on a delayed honeymoon to various National Parks in Colorado and Utah after being married in November 2019.
WyKeshia (Wallace) Atkins ’13, of Cape Girardeau, MO, became president of the Heartland Chapter of the College Reading and Learning Association (CRLA) April 2021. In this role, she will chair the Board of Directors meetings and all general membership meetings, appoint the membership coordinator, historian, and webmaster, serve as a liaison between CRLA and the chapter, represent the chapter at CRLA conference and leadership Institutes and mentors the president-elect and maintains all records in order to conduct the business of the chapter. CRLA (formerly WCRLA) is a group of student-oriented professionals active in the fields of reading, learning assistance, developmental education, tutoring and mentoring at the college and adult levels. CRLA ís most vital function and overall purpose is to provide a forum for the interchange of ideas, methods, and information to improve student learning and to facilitate the professional growth of its members. The Heartland Chapter includes Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and Oklahoma.
Trevor Mulholland ’14, of Ashland, MO, was recently promoted to director of member services for the Missouri Bar.
Jaime Myler ’14, of Catoosa, OK, recently graduated with her Psy.D. and is now a staff psychologist doing forensic evaluations for a state psychiatric hospital.
Thu Nguyen ’14, of Cottleville, MO, recently graduated with her MBA with a marketing emphasis. She is a marketing manager in healthcare industry. She also uses her degree to support my brother and sister's hot sauce business, supporting Asian American Culture.
Daniel Wright ’14, of Slater, MO, teaches music while currently working on his educational doctorate in leadership.
Arthur Schaefer ’16, of Cape Girardeau, MO, and his wife welcomed their first grandchild Kailor Schaefer born in May 2022.
Sara Riggs ’17, of Blytheville, AR, would like to brag on the Southeast Marching Band, not only for their exceptional abilities as musicians, but for how close they actually were (and hopes the new students are) as a true family. Sara's senior year began tough, balancing the increased school and work load along with the death of two grandparents. She missed a lot of her classes the first month of the semester, but her marching band fam was there for her through it all! There couldn't have been a better support system, and it was awesome for her to continue being part of the process in making wonderfully impactful music for the public to experience.
Brittney Swicionis ’17, of Cape Girardeau, MO, is excited to share that she purchased the Cape Girardeau, MO, franchise of Board & Brush in September 2020.
Hannah Alexander ’19, of Smithton, IL, is a graduate student at Arcadia University in the Master of Public Health/Master of Medical Science dual degree program. She expects to graduate in 2023.
Shawntice Midgett ’19, of St Louis, MO, graduated the police academy December 15, 2020.
Adam Smith ’20, of Cape Girardeau, MO, recently finished filming his web series and is looking to pitch his web series to major streaming services. The web series was all filmed in downtown Cape Girardeau.
Amelia Stone ’20, of Chicago, IL, recently starated at Advocate Aurora Healthcare as a registered dietitian.
Tejaswi Vyshnava ’20, of Iselin, NJ, is currently employed for a medical organization company in the New Jersey area.
Login Wood ’20, of DeBary, FL, has recently taken a job in Florida where he is now the lead superintendent for a renovation project on a middle school.
Margaret Reynolds ’21, of Seattle, WA, shares that SEMO gave her incredible job/school experience. Margaret is currently in a position that she loves and she thanks SEMO for preparing her.