Alumni Events & Programs (2022)

Page 1




The purpose of Concordia College is to influence the affairs of the world by sending into society thoughtful and informed men and women dedicated to the Christian life.

Greetings from Concordia With the recent commencement, we welcomed the class of 2022 to the growing legacy of Cobber alumni, now more than 35,000 strong. But as you all know, being a Cobber doesn’t end with commencement. As we continue to move out of the pandemic, the schedule of Concordia programming and alumni events is filling in nicely and we invite you to review the schedules, follow your favorite Cobber social media feeds, wear your Cobber gear with pride, and plan to attend Concordia events on campus and off. Please take time to review the invitation to join the Cobber Ambassador program where we are working together to engage and advance the mission and message of the college. I hope you have a wonderful summer and I hope to see you very soon!

Jeffrey Cadwell ’89 President, National Alumni Board

National Alumni Board The Concordia College Alumni Association sustains and advances Concordia’s mission by strengthening the relationship between the college and its alumni, and alumni and students, through active engagement, supporting enrollment, and giving and career initiatives. Board members serve a four-year term, with the exception of officers, and are recommended by peers at OFFICERS President: Jeffrey Cadwell ’89 Vice President: Elizabeth (Maiers) Cheney ’03

Secretary: Kris (Lomis) Simon ’79 President Emerita: Karen (Pfaff) Paul ’84

ALUMNI BOARD MEMBERS Rev. Lisa Ahlness ’84 Anna (Haugo) Argo ’11 Eric Beenken ’88 Kathryn (Johnson) Benson ’64 Sharon (Muir) Buhr ’68 Tim Bye ’79 Karl Carlson ’93

Layne Danielson ’95 Jon Evert ’68 Elle (Lorenson) Grothaus ’92 Sarah (Cobb) Guzman ’07 Brandon Huether ’10 Mary (Moe) Johnson ’73 Christopher Jones ’98

Karen (Lattu) Polzin ’77 Steve Rohr ’92 Pete Seljevold ’84 Aaron Siegle ’05 Ashley Thompson ’16 Alexi Waul ’03

MEMBERS ELECT JoonHyung Cho ’04 Rev. Bradley Edin ’79 Scott Ellingson ’77

Dr. Peace Eneh ’11 Susan (Rathbun) Kortemeier ’76 Krista (Wee) Nelson ’72

Dulcie (Healing Ground) Bear Don’t Walk ’95 Kai (Janovsky) Western ’00 1

BECOME A COBBER AMBASSADOR You’re part of more than 35,000 alumni around the world. The Cobber community extends well beyond the borders of campus. You’re living the mission, impacting society and can give back to help the next generation of students have access to the same life-changing education you had at Concordia.

Who are Cobber Ambassadors?

Cobber Ambassadors are people like you who care about Concordia’s students and mission to influence the affairs of the world. They know the college better than anyone and are in a unique position to help spread the word about Concordia’s transformative education, and build connections between students, alumni and friends.

Who can be an Ambassador?

Truly anyone! Alumni, current and former parents, faculty, and staff – anyone who has a heart for supporting the students we serve. Don’t let a busy schedule prevent you from joining the team. Give back how, when and where it means the most to you through a variety of opportunities throughout the year.

How can I be an Ambassador?

There are many ways to make a difference. Consider any or all of the impact areas in the coming pages that are of interest to you. We will continue to develop more details and specific ways you can get involved. Make it official by signing up on our website for special ambassador communication and insider info.



We encourage you to think of any student who would be a great fit at Concordia. They might be the children of co-workers, friends or relatives, or the young men and women you’ve coached or met at church. They might be students whose names were just in the newspaper for the honor roll, sports awards, or being involved in a community service project. We’re excited to engage with them, so let us know who they are at


They’ll be ready for what’s next in four years, guaranteed.

LEARNING + DOING Gain skills that put them at an advantage with employers and grad schools.

RIGHT PLACE, RIGHT PRICE A new approach to value with nearly 100% of students benefiting from financial aid.

CAREER-FOCUSED Working toward long-term career goals begins the moment they step on campus.

W H Y C O N C O R D I A?


of Cobbers are accepted to graduate school or employed full time within six months of graduation.


of our undergraduate students choose to double major (and still graduate in four years!).


internship and student teaching experiences are completed annually.



Whether it’s been a few years or a few decades since you’ve been on campus, you’re still a huge part of the Concordia community. Stay connected by updating your contact info at Cobber Salt – Students and Alumni Linked Together With the core focus of connecting alumni and students, SALT emphasizes lifelong Cobber participation in the vitality of the college by developing class affinity, facilitating career networking, teaching students a lifestyle of philanthropy, enhancing existing Concordia traditions and providing opportunities for students to learn and grow as leaders. Learn more about this dynamic student group, dedicated to building relationships between alumni and students, at Events As life continues to move forward, we hope to strengthen our connections through both virtual and in-person events. No matter where you live, you can join the Cobber community. Watch for email and social media invitations and check the event webpage at Class Letters Read your annual class letter from your class agent with stories of classmates and a campus update. Letters are available online at Highlight your marriage, new job, children/grandchildren, travel, or any life events for your class letter at Career Services We’ve got your back in job hunting and career transition! Discover your ideal vocation with the help of the Concordia Career Center: 218.299.3020 or Schedule an appointment with a career advisor, view job openings, or mentor and provide career opportunities for students at, the online Concordia networking platform. On-Campus Access and Worship Remember that you are invited to use the Concordia pool, track and other spaces, which are open to students, staff and alumni. Please join us for chapel during the academic year through our livestream at

News & Media News & Notes Know what’s happening by subscribing to the electronic Concordia newsletter at Concordia Magazine


Read campus highlights, class notes and Concordia stories in the annual alumni magazine anytime online at

Engage By sharing your ideas, time or resources, you make immense contributions to past, current and future Cobbers. If you’d like to participate, contact Alumni Relations at 218.299.3734 or visit Class Agent Write the annual class letter, with updates on your classmates, and work with the reunion planning committee during your reunion years. Reunion Team Assist your class agent with class celebrations. Invite classmates to your reunion and to gather in honor of the important milestone. Twin Cities and Fargo-Moorhead Young Alumni Engagement Committee Plan social, educational, networking and service activities for young alumni in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area and the many young alumni in Fargo/West Fargo/ Moorhead. Corn Feed Host Gather alumni in your area to strengthen relationships between alumni, parents, prospective students and friends of Concordia. The college will promote your event and reimburse costs up to $200. Twin Cities Concordia Women Connect Committee Organize speaker events (often with brunch) two to three times a year in person or virtually, designed for Concordia alumnae and friends of all ages to connect, network and engage in interesting world topics.


Share Refer a Future Cobber Help build the next generation of Cobbers! Tell the young people in your life about your Concordia experience and refer potential students to the Admission office at Social Media Join Concordia conversations, follow the stories and help spread the word on college happenings through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and other social media channels. Be sure to use #cordmn. Concordia Class Ring The official Cobber ring is the recognized symbol of Concordia College, signifying its tradition and creating bonds between alumni worldwide. Repair and purchase info is provided at Little Niblet T-shirt Concordia celebrates the birth of future Cobbers! If you have a new addition (ages 0-2) to your alumni family, the Office of Alumni Relations will send you a free “Little Niblet” 18-month T-shirt. To request one, fill out the class notes form at Cobber Bookstore Update your Kernel swag at


Thank you, Cobbers! Nearly 7,000 people made a gift to Concordia last year.

Together we help provide the critical scholarships, learning experiences, and support students need to succeed. Cobber alumni know the power of a Concordia education and the importance of investing in young people.

Learn More and Give:

“The guidance, preparation and acceptance I received from Concordia would not be possible without donations from alumni and friends like you. Thank you for believing in the mission of the college, and in turn, believing in me.” Gunnar Fering ’23


Concordia Giving Day Thursday, Nov. 17

Last November, 1,500+ donors raised nearly $550,000 for scholarships to help make the Concordia experience possible for every Cobber. Imagine what we can do together on Giving Day 2022! 7

Dates to Remember A LUMNI GOLF TOURNAMENTS 9 for IX Women’s Golf Tournament 11 a.m. June. 24 Osgood Golf Course, Fargo, N.D. Finn/Carol Grinaker Golf Tournament 11:30 a.m. June 27 Moorhead Country Club

Concordia Baseball Golf Scramble 11 a.m. Aug. 1 Greystone Golf Club, Sauk Centre, Minn.

Clay Nagel Wrestling Golf Tournament 11:30 a.m. Aug. 26 Perham Lakeside Golf course

Concordia Football Golf Tournament 10:30 a.m. Aug. 5 Moorhead Country Club

M O R E ALU MNI E VENTS Cobber Night at St. Paul Saints 7:07 p.m. June 28 Saints vs. Omaha CHS Field, St. Paul, Minn.

Young Alumni Night at MN United Soccer 7 p.m., Sept. 13 Allianz Field, St. Paul, Minn.

The Concordia Band Tour Feb. 5-12, 2023 (location TBD) Home Concert: Feb. 12

Cobbers Night at MN Twins 6:40 p.m., July 14 Twins vs. White Sox Target Field, Minneapolis

Homecoming Oct. 7-9

The Concordia Choir Tour Main Tour: March 4-March 19, 2023 Central United States, including Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas

Twin Cities Corn Feeds Maple Grove – Aug. 7 Eagan – Aug. 14 Moorhead Corn Feed 5:30 p.m., Aug. 17 Near Prexy’s Pond, Concordia College Move-In Day 7 a.m.-1 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 21 Welcome students and help them move in. Gather after for lunch and fellowship. Concordia at Minnesota State Fair Aug. 25-Sept. 5


The Concordia Orchestra Tour Oct. 31-Nov. 6 (location TBD) Home Concert Nov. 6 Concordia Giving Day Nov. 17 Support student scholarships Concordia Christmas Concerts Dec. 2, 3, 4 Moorhead Concordia Christmas Concerts Dec. 8 Minneapolis

Twin Cities Concordia Women Connect TBD Concordia Author Series March 9-10, 2023 Celebration of Student Scholarship April 19, 2023 Commencement Weekend April 29-May 1, 2023

The Corn Feed tradition began in 1974 with events in the Twin Cities and Moorhead. Do-It-Yourself Corn Feeds continue to be a hit among Concordia family and friends, as alumni host them in their local areas. This year, we have Corn Feeds planned across the country and warmly invite current and potential students to gather with alumni at the one nearest to their home. Each event is personalized by the event hosts, but rest assured that there will always be corn and Cobber community! Want to plan your own Corn Feed, or similar event? Contact Marah Moy at or 218.299.3453. Concordia reimburses up to $200 of your expenses. Plans are in progress for Corn Feeds in the following cities, with more areas to follow. Details and additional locations will be posted online, as they are confirmed, at AREA CORN FEEDS

Bismarck, N.D. – July 31

Eagan, Minn. – Aug. 14

Brainerd, Minn. – Aug. 1

Willmar, Minn. – Aug. 15

Park Rapids, Minn. – Aug. 4

Boise, Idaho – Aug. 27

Maple Grove, Minn. – Aug. 7

Iowa City, Iowa – Sept. 11

Portland, Ore. – Aug. 8

Thousand Oaks, Calif. — Sept. 17

Litchfield, Minn. – Aug. 8

Phoenix, Ariz. – Nov. 6

Alexandria, Minn. – Aug. 9

Moorhead, Minn. – Aug. 17

Milwaukee, Wis. – Aug. 13


8 10

HOMECOMING SCHEDULE *Requires preregistration, an RSVP and/or a fee. Homecoming details and registration can be found online at or by calling Alumni Relations at 218.288.3734.

THURSDAY, OCT. 6 9:50 A.M. Chapel – Centrum, Knutson Campus Center 6:30-9:30 P.M. Class of 1972 50th Reunion Informal Gathering – Legends Sports Bar & Grill, Moorhead

7 P.M. Frosh Frolics – Olson Forum 8:45 P.M. Bonfire and Fireworks – Jake Christiansen Stadium

FRIDAY, OCT. 7 9:50 A.M. Homecoming Chapel – Centrum, Knutson Campus Center

Hear a message from the 2022 Homecoming Committee chair, Kylie Haas ’23.

10:30 A.M.-6:30 P.M. Homecoming Registration – Atrium Alcove, Knutson Campus Center Pick up nametags, tickets and your weekend program.

10:30 A.M. AND 2:45 P.M. Campus Tours – Leave from Atrium, Knutson Campus Center

Hosted by Student Ambassadors and SALT (Students and Alumni Linked Together)

12:30 P.M. 1972 50th Reunion Luncheon with President William Craft* – Centrum, Knutson Campus Center

5:30-6:30 P.M. Pre-Banquet Social Hour – Atrium, Knutson Campus Center

Enjoy a beverage and join fellow Cobbers and friends for a social hour prior to the banquet. Cash bar available

6:30 P.M. Homecoming Banquet* – Centrum, Knutson Campus Center Registration required; seating reserved

Honoring Alumni Achievement Awardees from 2022 Phyllis Bryn-Julson, Keith Fuglie, John Smith, and Beth Renner

7:30-10 P.M. Class of 1972 50th Reunion Gathering, Radisson Blu – Downtown Fargo


SATURDAY, OCT. 8 Cobber 5K Fun Run and Niblet Kids’ 1 Mile* 7-8 A.M. Registration for Cobber 5K Fun Run & Kids' Niblet 1 Mile* 8:30 A.M. Homecoming Cobber 5K* (all ages welcome) 9:30 A.M. Kids’ Niblet Mile* (12 and under) $20 early registration before Sept. 29 (includes T-shirt) $15 early registration for Niblet Kids’ Mile $25 after Sept. 29 (includes T-shirt based on availability)

8, 8:30 OR 9 A.M. Reunion Breakfasts (15th-55th)* – Knutson Campus Center Pick up your registration materials here.

9 A.M. Golden Cobbers Breakfast (60th, 65th 70th Reunions)* – Barry Auditorium, Grant Center

Pick up your registration materials here.

9:30-11 A.M. Young Alumni Breakfast (classes 2017-22) – Mick’s Office, Moorhead Registration not required; pancakes and beverages available for purchase Contact Alumni Relations with questions: 218.299.3734.

10 A.M. Academic Open House – Atrium, Integrated Science Center

Meet current professors and students in your former department.

10-10:45 A.M. Education Department Alumni Reception – Second Floor, Old Main

The Education Club invites past and present education majors for refreshments.

10-11 A.M. Library Reunion* – 1st Floor Reference Room, Carl B. Ylvisaker Library

RSVP Colleen Egan at or 218.299.4640, indicating class year and library employment years.

11 A.M. Homecoming Parade – Eighth Street, Moorhead

Route starts from Townsite Center near McDonald’s and ends at the Jake Christiansen Stadium

NOON Cobber Wrestling Tailgate – Behind third baseline dugout

All wrestling alumni, family and friends are invited to gather before the football game. Enjoy concessions for purchase and socialize with past and present wrestling alumni. No RSVP required


1 P.M. Football vs. Macalester – Jake Christiansen Stadium

Tickets are available at the gate. During halftime, the 2022 Athletic Hall of Fame inductees will be recognized.

3-5 P.M. Lambda Delta Sigma Alumni Tea* – Birkeland Alumni Lounge, Offutt Concourse

LDS alumni will enjoy treats and share their experiences and memories of Lambda Delta Sigma. Please RSVP at

3:30-5:30 P.M. Athletes Reunion (1971, 1972 and 1973)

– Legends Bar and Grill, Moorhead No registration required; purchase food and drink on your own.

5 P.M. Athletic Hall of Fame Reception* – Barry Auditorium, Grant Center The 2022 Athletic Hall of Fame inductees will be honored. Registration is required. Hors d’oeuvres will be served.

6:30 PM. Homecoming Concert – Memorial Auditorium Free; arrive early to get a good seat.

8:30 P.M. Reunion Gatherings*

Check online for times, locations and prices for all reunion-year gatherings.

8:30 P.M.-12 A.M. Band/Orchestra/Choir All-Reunion Gathering* (for all class years) – Knutson Campus Center Gather with former band, orchestra, and choir alumni.

SUNDAY, OCT. 9 10:30 A.M. All-Campus Worship – Memorial Auditorium All are welcome!




From left to right: Karen, Eric, Marah, Shar

ERIC Johnson ’82

KAREN Carlson ’80

Hometown: St. Paul, Minn. • Father of three Cobbers • Big fan of “Ted Lasso” • Frida, the Golden Retriever, is his roommate

Hometown: Twin Valley, Minn. • Enjoys gardening • Starbucks go to: Iced Green Tea Lemonade with one pump of classic • Voted: Miss Congeniality of the office


MARAH Moy ’18

SHAR Berns ’00

Hometown: Buffalo, Minn. • Recently completed her master’s degree • Adores all things Disney • Loves Diet Coke

Hometown: Montevideo, Minn. • Laughter Yoga leader • Former dance teacher and studio owner • A two-time Tough Mudder finisher

Assistant Director


Associate Director

Communications Coordinator



Egypt // April 16-26, 2023 Join Dr. James Aageson, retired dean of Arts and Sciences, on a journey from vibrant Cairo and the Great Pyramids to Abu Simbel. Discover why the marvels of ancient Egypt have drawn visitors for millennia on this 11-day expedition to most of its important sites. Cruise the Nile from Aswan to Luxor before returning to Cairo. Italy // June 2023 Travel off the beaten track to the best of lovely northern Italy with Eric Dregni, dean of the Italian Concordia Language Village since 2007. Soak in the spas of San Pellegrino (yes, that San Pellegrino), hike in the Alps, relax on a boat tour in the romantic Lake District, and dine at an agriturismo in the Franciacorta region known for its bubbly white wines that always top champagne. Besides the lush nature, spend a day in Milan visiting museums, the cathedral, and the fabulous shops. Finally, you’ll lounge on the Italian Riviera in Liguria and swim in the sea near the dramatic Cinque Terre. The Wonder of Wine: California Wine Tour // May 2023 (5 days) Our guide for Concordia’s California Wine Tour is winemaker and owner of Hammerling Wines (, Josh Hammerling. He will engage us in the winemaking process as we visit vineyards, discover how the land and climate shapes the taste of wine, and engage in the joys of winemaking. More importantly we will get to enjoy some of the finest wines in California alongside food from some truly amazing chefs, who will reveal what they think about food and wine pairings. Dr. Roy Hammerling, professor emeritus of the religion department, will offer some background

on the history and spirituality of wine. We will also have discussions on the future of winemaking and issues of sustainability. Whether you are an expert or a beginner in the world of wine, this tour has something for everyone who is interested in learning about the wonder of wine. Norway // June 15-25, 2023 Cross the Atlantic with Dr. Lisa SethreHofstad, vice president for Student Development and Campus Life and professor of psychology. Each stop on this tour of Norway will surpass the last with breathtaking views and scenic splendor. Mind, Majesty and Meaning in Central Europe // Fall 2023 This extraordinary journey will take you from Lucerne to Salzburg and then on to Prague with Dr. Susan Cordes Green, retired associate professor of psychology. This trip incorporates traditional activities, sightseeing, events, exploration and group companionship with a focus on individual renewal and personal growth via a focus on nature, the arts and mindfulness practices. Tanzania // February 2024 Drive through the Serengeti Plains and to Tarangire National Park with Dr. James Aageson, retired dean of Arts and Sciences, and visit a variety of Lutheran missionary projects. See diverse African wildlife, while visiting Lake Manyara National Park, the Great Rift Wall and Ngorongoro Crater. Witness the missionary work of David ’51 and Eunice (Nordby) ’52 Simonson at Maasai Girls Lutheran Secondary School, which has a close relationship with Concordia College.


Honoring our Alumni

The National Alumni Board recognizes alumni who are notably carrying out the mission of the college and who have distinguished themselves in their careers and service to others by conferring upon them the Alumni Achievement Award (alumni of more than 20 years) and the Sent Forth Award (alumni of less than 20 years). We also honor alumni of any age who are devoted to local community service with the Called to Serve Award. Nominate an outstanding alum for one of these awards and learn more about them at

Sent Forth Award Recipients Melissa (Cherney) Sobolik, a 2002 Concordia graduate, is CEO of the Great Plains Food Bank, Fargo, N.D. She previously was the development director for the Plains Art Museum, associate program director for Northern Great Plains Inc., and served on the Fargo City Commission, as well as boards of several local organizations. Sobolik hopes to change the stigma surrounding needing assistance and recognizes that without help her adult life could have been much different due to lack of nutrition. Cory Hepola, a 2003 Concordia graduate and native of Perham, Minn., has had a nationally renowned professional career in the Twin Cities. He was the host of a daily show on WCCO Radio in Minneapolis, “Hey, it’s Cory Hepola.” He is a two-time Emmy Award winner for Outstanding TV Anchor and has worked as a TV anchor and reporter for seven stations across five states, earning Best Sportscast twice, once in North Dakota and once in New York. Called to Serve Award Recipients Handt Hanson ’72 served as worship and music director for Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Burnsville, Minn., for 40 years. Hanson began a new worship ministry for Prince of Peace with outdoor events that attracted hundreds of people who had never attended a church. During his tenure, the church grew from under 1,000 to more than 10,000 members. Hanson also led various musical organizations, wrote original music, and wrote and produced dozens of high school and children’s musicals. Arnold (Casey) Stengel ’56, a teacher for several years, became a guidance counselor after earning a master’s in guidance counseling from the University of North Dakota. Along with serving Brainerd High School students as a guidance counselor for 30 years, he was also an assistant football and baseball coach. Stengel volunteered in the community and at his church and was honored with several awards including twice receiving Sertoma’s “Service to Mankind” award. 16

Alumni Achievement Award Recipients Soprano Phyllis Bryn-Julson ’67, known for her lustrous voice and pitchperfect three-octave range, commanded a remarkable repertoire of vocal literature spanning centuries and is recognized as one of the most authoritative interpreters of vocal music of the 20th century. The Grammy Award-nominated singer performed with dozens of major orchestras in Europe and North America under leading conductors and has numerous recordings to her credit. Bryn-Julson was a member of the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. Beth Renner ’91 serves as head of the Advice Center within Advice and Planning Center of Excellence for Wells Fargo Wealth and Investment Management. She leads a team of specialized subject matter experts responsible for helping clients make better financial decisions. Renner has more than 30 years of experience in the financial services industry and previously served as national director for Wells Fargo Philanthropic Services. Renner is active as a volunteer, philanthropist, and board member for several organizations. Keith Fuglie ’82, senior economist with the Economic Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, leads research on the economics of technological change and science policy for agriculture. He served as senior economist with the Clinton White House Council of Economic Advisors then spent 10 years in Africa and Asia with the International Potato Center. Fuglie’s awards include being recognized with the USDA’s highest award, the Secretary’s Honor Award for Professional Service, among others. Judge John Smith ’71, retired senior judge on the Minnesota Court of Appeals, was appointed to the Ninth Judicial District in 1991 and to the Court of Appeals in 2012. Smith spent more than 15 years as an attorney in Park Rapids, Minn., prior to his appointment to the bench. He is recognized as one of the state’s most skillful and accomplished trial judges, a statewide and national leader in the judiciary, and a leader in community service.


Update your contact information, particularly email address, at or by calling 218.299.3743.

To be more sustainable, we are reducing the publications we mail. Please consider this your invitation to the events in this booklet. Look for reminders and registration via email and online at or on social media (view channels at

218.299.3734 •

Alumni Relations

Whether it’s your reunion year or not, there’s an activity for you Oct. 6-9! Find all the details you need for a spirited week on pages 10-13.





Concordia College Office of Alumni Relations 901 8th St. S. Moorhead MN 56562 CONCORDIA COLLEGE