IOWA Magazine | 05-03-2018

Class Notes May 2018

7 minute read


Justin Bailey (15MA, 16MFA), assistant professor at the Indiana University School of Art, Architecture, and Design in Bloomington, Indiana, has been named one of "Five Fresh Talents" at Toronto Design Week by Azure magazine.

Kathryn Baron (14MA), a high school counselor in Mount Vernon, Iowa, received the 2018 Counselors That Change Lives Award from the Colleges That Change Lives organization.

Tyler Gums (16MS), assistant professor at the University of Texas at Austin College of Pharmacy, received honors for his poster at the 2017 Ambulatory Care PRN Annual Meeting.

Nina Jovanovic (17MPH) received a 2018 Developing Country Eye Researcher Travel Fellowship from the ARVO Foundation for Eye Research to continue her training and work in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Lucas Mann (12MFA), an assistant professor at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, received a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship in creative writing.

Rachel Nash (12BS, 14MPH), executive coordinator of child health for the American Academy of Pediatrics' Section on Pediatric Trainees and a fourth-year medical student at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan, recently led a national social media campaign advocating for the extension and funding of the Child Health Insurance Program.

Aaron Warner (15MBA) is founder of ProCircular, a cybersecurity company in Coralville.

Cutter Wood (10MFA), author of Love and Death in the Sunshine State: The Story of a Crime, received a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship in creative writing.

Rachel Zuckerman (17BA) has been selected as a 2019 Schwarzman Scholar and will pursue a master's degree at Tsinghua University in Beijing.


Jenna Kollings Brownlee (08BFA), a senior graphic designer for the Greater Des Moines Partnership, was named the Des Moines Creative of the Year at the 2017 YP of the Year Award ceremony hosted by the Des Moines Register and the Young Professionals Connection.

Gesine Gerhard (00PhD) is dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Drake University in Des Moines.

Neal Gidvani (05BA, 05BS, 08JD) is executive vice president of business development for Sun Genomics, a biotech startup in Las Vegas.

Mike Humpal (07BA) is the owner of Humpal Chiropractic in North Liberty, Iowa.

Emily Meyer (01BA) is the owner of New Leaf Redevelopment Consulting, a real estate development company in Cedar Rapids specializing in historic preservation.

Seung Min Kim (07BS) is a reporter at the Washington Post covering the White House.

Melissa Kotacka (03BA), a college counselor in Durham, North Carolina, received the 2018 Counselors That Change Lives Award from the Colleges That Change Lives organization.

Jenny Harle Quiner (07BA) is owner of Dogpatch Urban Gardens, an organic produce grower in Des Moines.

Joseph Tripp (08BA, 08BS), chef and co-owner at Harbinger restaurant in Des Moines, has been named a 2018 James Beard Award semifinalist in the "Best Chef: Midwest" category.

Gabriele Villarini (08PhD), UI associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, has been appointed director of IIHR-Hydroscience and Engineering.

Brent Willett (05BA) is president and CEO of the Iowa Health Care Association in West Des Moines.

Matthew Stejskal (07BBA) is vice president of corporate development at Mutual of Omaha.


Michael Barnes (95MA, 96MFA), professor of printmaking at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois, received the university's 2017 Distinguished Graduate Faculty Award.

Michael Ernst (97PharmD), clinical professor in the UI College of Pharmacy, serves on the editorial board for the new Journal of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy.

Rick Gates (95BSPH), a member of the UI College of Pharmacy's Executive Leadership Board, is senior vice president of pharmacy and health care for Walgreens, headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois.

Nicole Grosland (94BSE, 98PhD), a UI engineering professor and departmental executive officer for biomedical engineering, has been named associate dean for academic programs.

Brooke Hallowell (91PhD) is dean of the School of Health Sciences and Rehabilitation Studies at Springfield College in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Joseph Kimball (90BS) is a family practice physician with the Madison County Health Care System in Winterset, Iowa, and serves as the county medical examiner.

Jeffrey Konya (98JD) is director of athletics and recreation at Northeastern University in Boston.

Sean O'Grady (91BS, 93MA) is chief clinical operations officer at NorthShore University HealthSystem in Evanston, Illinois.

Laura Borgelt (95BSPH), associate dean at the University of Colorado Skaggs School of Pharmacy in Aurora, Colorado, received honors for her poster at the 2017 Ambulatory Care PRN Annual Meeting.


Peggy Bradford (83JD) is president at Shawnee Community College in Ullin, Illinois.

Neil Brown (81BA), editor and vice president of the Tampa Bay Times, is president of the Poynter Institute, a nonprofit journalism education and training center in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Chris Catney (86MA, 96PharmD) recently retired as clinical assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science after more than 40 years at the UI.

Matthew McAndrew (81BS) is a partner with M&B Water, a water quality business in Coralville.

Christine Taylor (81BA) is the executive director of the Kohler Foundation, a nonprofit organization that supports the arts, education, and charitable initiatives in Wisconsin.

Peter Triolo (83BS, 87DDS, 91MS) is professor emeritus at the University of Texas School of Dentistry at Houston.

C.J. Williams (85BBA, 88JD) has been nominated as U.S. district judge for the Northern District of Iowa.


Mary Bennett (76BA, 85MA), special collections coordinator for the State Historical Society of Iowa in Iowa City, is an alumni fellow for the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Jim L. Green (73BA, 76MS, 79PhD) is chief scientist for NASA in Washington, D.C.

John Eckstein (70BA), a director and attorney at Fairfield and Woods law firm in Denver, is a member of the board of directors for Water For People, a global nonprofit that works to provide quality water and sanitation services for people in Central and South America, Africa, and India.

Mark Kamps (78BGS), a broker and owner with Coldwell Banker Real Estate Professionals in Iowa City, is 2018 president of the Iowa Association of Realtors.

Dana Ramundt (74BBA), the CEO and founder of the Dana Company, an independent insurance agency in Des Moines, has perpetuated the business and will remain indefinitely with the firm as chairman.

Charles R. Ray (75BFA), professor emeritus at UCLA and a sculptor, is a 2018 UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Alumni Fellow.


Myrna Balk (61BA), an artist and social worker, exhibited her work at a 50-year retrospective art show at Piano Craft Gallery in Boston and was the subject of a television profile on the Boston Neighborhood Network.

Joseph R. Gaylord (67BA), former executive director of the National Republican Congressional Committee and a visiting adjunct professor in the UI political science department, is a 2018 UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Alumni Fellow.

Gary Graham (68BA) recently retired after 26 years of public service in O'Fallon, Illinois, where he served five terms as mayor and was president of the Illinois Municipal League.

Ann Howard Jones (64BM, 66MA, 84DMA), retired director of choral activities at Boston University, is a 2018 UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Alumni Fellow.

Dennis Killinger (67BA), professor emeritus of physics at the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida, has been named to the 2017 class of fellows of the National Academy of Inventors.

James Kimball (60BA, 64MD) and Mary Ellen Foss Kimball (75BA, 88MA) served as producer and artistic director, respectively, on a film titled The Waiting Room, which was featured on Iowa Public Television.

Earl E. Fitz (68BBA, 70MA), a professor at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, published a book titled Inter-American Literary History: Six Critical Periods and delivered a Distinguished Lecture at Temple University and the 56th Christopher Longest Lecture at the University of Mississippi.


The late George Caldwell (55MA), one of the first hospital administrators to advance the idea of patient-centered care, will be inducted into the Health Care Hall of Fame this spring at the American College of Healthcare Executives Congress in Chicago.

Faculty & Friends

Martin Dyar, a 2013 resident of the UI International Writing Program, is a writer-in-residence at the University of Limerick's creative writing program in Limerick, Ireland.

Karen Heimer, UI professor of sociology, is president of the American Society of Criminology.

Linda Kalin, executive director of the Iowa Poison Control Center and an adjunct faculty member and preceptor for the UI College of Pharmacy, received a 2017 Iowa Public Health Heroes Awards for working to improve health and wellness throughout the state.

Aliasger Salem—UI professor of chemical and biomedical engineering, professor at the Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center, division head of pharmaceutics and translational therapeutics, and the Lyle and Sharon Bighley Endowed Chair and Professor in Pharmaceutical Science—has been elected as a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering.

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