Regis University Magazine - Fall/Winter 2022

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WEEKEND TO REMEMBER Alumni reconnect and make new memories at Blue & Gold Weekend.

SAINT PRESERVES THEM Treasured medal protects three generations as they serve their country.

Alumnus makes history, and makes a point, atop Mt. Everest.

Regis community helps Ukrainians caught in the crossfire.

How a priest and a railroad man made one mammoth of a discovery.

OPEN HEARTS, OPEN DOORS New program welcomes students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

FOLK ART ICONS Regis gallery honors centuries-old Santos tradition.

CURA CIVITAS Regis College showcases how mental health outreach cares for the whole community.

Regis University supports a sustainable environment. Please recycle this magazine when finished reading.

Regis University Magazine is published biannually by Marketing and Communications for the University community of alumni, benefactors, faculty, staff, students and families.


Todd Cohen


EDITOR Karen Augé



EDITORIAL STAFF McKenna Solomon Sara Knuth


CONTRIBUTORS Barry “Bear” Gutierrez Jacob Garcia Meredith Sell Brett Stakelin

ON THE COVER: Eddie Taylor rappels down a vertical section of the Khumbu icefall during his ascent of Mt. Everest with the all-Black climbing group Full Circle Everest. Photo: Evan Green.

SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS email: mail: Regis University Magazine 3333 Regis Blvd., L-27, Denver CO 80221

ADVANCE YOUR EDUCATION visit: call: 800.944.7667 email:


MAKE A GIFT TO REGIS call: 303.964.3608 visit:


Free Regi hugs were a main attraction, along with donuts, of course at the first Bash Wednesday, Sept. 7 on the Northwest Denver campus. Regis's newest tradition, Bash Wednesdays are an opportunity for the Regis community members to show their Ranger spirit, exercise, enjoy refreshments, support good causes, or all of the above.

Photo: Skip Stewart

For the hundreds who came to our Northwest Denver Campus on those sunny September days, Blue & Gold Weekend was a chance to reconnect, to recollect, maybe run a 5K, share a meal or play a round of golf.

For me, it was an opportunity to meet many of our remarkable alumni — including Colorado’s Lt.Gov. Dianne Primavera — experience first-hand their Regis pride, and listen as they shared success stories. It was gratifying to hear their accounts of how the University planted the seeds of their success and instilled in them the values that guide lives of meaning and substance.

Even as we celebrated our past students and their accomplishments, Blue & Gold Weekend prompted me to look ahead to future Regis students who will return to campus for Blue & Gold as alumni five, 10 or 20 years from now.

It has been a busy and fruitful year, as we have worked to assure that incoming students will experience a “transformative education at the frontiers of faith, reason and culture” now and for decades to come.

Some of the highlights of that work include:

• T wo new vice presidents, Kelly Purdy as VP of Advancement and Dr. Senthil Kumar, as VP of Strategic Enrollment Management. Both bring new energy and ideas to campus.

• By expanding internship opportunities and making more scholarships available, Regis is poised to attract outstanding scholars from Colorado and throughout the Rocky Mountain region.

• Expanding student inclusion through initiatives including the GLOBAL program, which serves students with intellectual and developmental disabilities; the Virtual Inside/Out program, which offers college courses to incarcerated adults; and Osher Lifelong Learning for adults 50 and “better.”

• Efforts to earn formal federal designation as a Hispanic Serving Institution and the enhanced services that would bring for our students.

These are just a few of the endeavors that demonstrate Regis’ commitment to grow as an inclusive institution and create a culture that instills a keen sense of belonging among students, faculty and staff.

In all these endeavors, we will lean into the Regis mission — to provide transformative education, to be contemplative in action, and always mindful of the vital question “How ought we to live?”

That mission is particularly relevant as the holiday season approaches and we are reminded to walk with the poor and marginalized, and show up for family, friends and community with generosity in spirit.

In just five years, we will be celebrating Regis’ 150th anniversary. Given the generosity and dedication of our Regis community, I am confident that future Regis alumni will have plenty to celebrate.

Better together,


Dear Editor:

I always enjoy the magazine but this issue was particularly good. [Spring/Summer 2022].

The article on Ken Phillips brought back memories of the wonderful Advent series many years ago when I was in Denver. Ken was always generous with his talents. The article on homelessness was particularly well done and so many other stores about people sharing their gifts and talents with others.

Thank you for such an uplifting issue.

Sister Kathleen Elliott


Huge thanks to all those who submitted entries in the Flamingo Photo Caption Contest!

We were impressed by all the Ranger creativity, cleverness and humor on display that choosing a winner became a matter of intense debate among magazine staff.

Among the entries that garnered a lot of votes: “School officials showing a group of bubbly freshmen that grass is really greener on the other side,” from Wayne Hanebrink; and “The Front Door Key Is Here Somewhere!!,” submitted by Tom Nolan.

And kudos to Mary Ann Lewis for an entry that name-dropped one of Regis’ most beloved professors: “Ron DiSanto’s Philosophy for Phlamingos 101.”

Dear Editor:

As a Regis graduate, I was thrilled to see the Prospero tapestries in the spring/ summer Regis University Magazine. My husband is a former actor who played Prospero on a Colorado Chautauqua tour, and we'd both love to view the tapestries.

Thank you, Nancy Trammell

Editor’s note: Ken Phillips’ tapestries are displayed intermittently. We hope that with encouragement, he can be convinced to display them publicly more often.

When the votes were counted, we had not one, but two winners:

“Welcome to the inaugural semester at Regis University’s new Florida campus” ~ Alyson Hackett and

“Experiencing a prolonged drought, the campus flamingos must be watered daily to maintain their lush pink hue.” ~ Annika Fortna

Congratulations! Your prizes are on the way.


Please send comments, suggestions and thoughts to or Regis University Magazine, L-27, 3333 Regis Blvd., Denver, CO 80221



It took 38 years and 538 wins, but Regis legend and former men’s basketball Coach Lonnie Porter was inducted into the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Hall of Fame in July. Porter, the winningest college basketball coach in Colorado history, has been enshrined in the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame since 2001. And, for nearly 25 years he’s been enriching the lives of kids, even those who wouldn’t know a sky hook from a double dribble, through the Porter-Billups Leadership Academy on our Northwest Denver Campus.


In a celebration of standout Ranger athletes and the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the Regis Athletics Hall of Fame Committee inducted an all-female 2022 class into the Hall of Fame. Alisa Heronema (softball), Denene Jacovetta (volleyball), Meshach Rhoades (women's basketball), Lauren Policky (women's cross country), Linda Raunig (women's basketball), Molly Marrin (women's basketball coach) and the 2002-2003 Regis women's basketball team were honored in a ceremony Sept. 24, during Blue & Gold Weekend.


Homeboy Industries founder Rev. Greg Boyle, S.J., spoke to the Regis community of redemption and restoration during a September appearance. Founded in 1988, Homeboy is a leading gang intervention, rehabilitation and re-entry program. While he acknowledged greater divisiveness in society, Boyle found reason to hope. “I don't think we'd ever go back to that period where so many people have demonized gang members so thoroughly,” Boyle said. His appearance was made possible by a partnership between the University and Fully Liberated Youth (FLY), a non-profit that aims to aid and empower young people experiencing oppression, trauma and involvement with gangs or the legal system.

Photo: Jacob Garcia


Farah Jasmine Griffin’s Read Until You Understand: The Profound Wisdom of Black Life and Literature is part tour through Black literature, part examination of ideals, and part memoir of a woman whose thirst for knowledge appears unquenchable. Small wonder it landed on Publisher’s Weekly’s 2021 list of best nonfiction books. Or that it was chosen as Regis’ fall university-wide and first-year common read. Griffin, Columbia University professor and African American and African Diaspora studies department chair, spent two days on Regis’ northwest Denver campus to deliver a public lecture as this year’s Chester Alter Visiting Scholar, and lead discussions of her book with students and staff.


This fall, Ken Burns’ documentary, The U.S. and the Holocaust, brought the horrors of that genocide, and the shortcomings of the American response to it, to millions of living rooms. In October, students, faculty, staff and community members attended a screening of that documentary, then had the opportunity to meet Estelle Nadel, a local resident who survived the mass killings and to hear from the daughter of Holocaust survivors. They were special guests at the event, which was sponsored by Regis’ Center for the Study of War Experience, PBS12 and History Colorado.

THE (HEALING) POWER OF THE PEN Regis’ Mile-High MFA and master of arts programs have begun working with Denver’s The Gathering Place to offer creative writing workshops to survivors of domestic abuse. The Gathering Place provides support for women, transgender people and children living in poverty. The partnership provides a creative outlet for women who have endured trauma, as well as a professional development and service-learning opportunity for Mile-High MFA students and instructors. Ultimately, the goal is to offer a creative writing curriculum to Gathering Place residents.


Fulbright award expands assistant professor’s horizons and skills

Emily Stones has a year to learn Japanese. Not an easy task for anyone, but add the fact that Stones is a fulltime Regis assistant professor of communication, a researcher, wife and mother of three pre-teens, and just undertaking the attempt becomes impressive. But the endeavor is significant for Stones, who has won a Fulbright scholarship that will allow her to teach in Japan for five months beginning March 2023. After all, how would it look if a professor chosen to bring her communication expertise to Japanese classrooms couldn’t communicate?

Stones’ students at Tokai University outside Tokyo and at Nihon University in Mishima in central Japan will speak English, the language she’ll conduct classes in. Still, she said she is “practicing diligently,” hoping to communicate with Japanese people in their language.

Though exact courses haven’t been determined, Stones said she’s been asked to teach on the history of disability rights in the United States and on the interaction and influence between media and politics here.

Trying to understand the latter is tough enough within the United States, Stones acknowledged. “It will be a wonderful challenge to teach in a non-U.S. context,” she said.

Here, Stones said, “My goal is how can I teach students to be better consumers of political media, and less prone to accepting misinformation,” she said. “But really my goal is how to keep students engaged. Young people are more checked out of politics. They care about issues, but they almost see those issues as separate from politics.”

In her other focus area, neurodiversity, Stones examines how people with conditions like autism and ADHD interact with others – and vice versa. Her interest, she said, is, “How do we make communication more inclusive? Traditionally, if you have an autism diagnosis, you go to a specialist to learn how to ‘communicate’ better. The burden is on them to learn how to communicate so they can fit into broader society. How do we expand that?”

The prestigious Fulbright Program, created in 1946 in the aftermath of World War II, aims to increase understanding between the United States and other countries. Of the thousands who apply each year to teach or research around the world, only about 800 win Scholars Program awards.

Teaching abroad has long been an ambition for Stones. “In her ‘20s, my mother taught in South Korea, and I grew up hearing that story. So, I always thought that was something I’d want to do.”

The dream got deferred. About the time Stones applied to graduate school in Australia, she met the man who would become her husband. Then came three children, and her overseas aspirations got further sidelined. Like so many others jolted into introspection and action by the pandemic, Stones said 2020 convinced her that “it was time to make a move.”

Exactly where that move will take her and her family is still to be decided. “I do know that I’ll be near Mt. Fuji. And I’ll be commuting by bullet train to Tokyo.”

Her mother — her inspiration — is proud, she said. “Both my parents plan to visit us in Japan.”

Stones said she’s heard Japanese college students may be accustomed to absorbing information through lectures. But she hopes her classroom style will translate. “I do small group discussions, partner exercises, things like that.” She hopes her students won’t be shy about sharing their opinions.

Learning the answer is something Stones is excited about. She has, after all, made human communication her life’s work. “Human behavior, the way people interact, that’s fascinating to me.” ~ KA

Photo: Brett Stakelin

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Daniel Berlau, Ph.D., professor in the Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions, was interviewed and quoted extensively this fall in a New York Times article. The story, “Can Brown Noise Turn Off Your Brain?” explored theories about the potentially calming effects of brown noise, the lower, deeper cousin to white noise, for people with anxiety or ADHD.

Melissa Bosworth, assistant professor of Health Services Education, has been named Chair of the Division of Health Services Education.

Works by Mile High MFA faculty members R. Alan Brooks, David Heska Wanbli Weiden and Erika T. Wurth are featured in Akashic Books’ new collection, Denver Noir. Akashic’s award winning Noir series features location-based dark tales.

In 2021, Regis Mile-High MFA faculty churned out books, and this year the awards for those books have come rolling in:

• Jenny Shank won a Colorado Book Award in fiction for her story collection, Mixed Company;

• Tell it Slant: An Anthology of Creative Nonfiction by Writers from Colorado Prisons, co-edited by poet Suzie Q. Smith, was a finalist for the award in the anthology category;

• Luther, Wyoming, by Tomas Alamilla and Regis’ Mario Acevedo was a finalist in the historical fiction category;

• A nd, Western Writers of America handed David Heska Wambli Weiden his fourth Spur award in three years for his story, “Skin,” which appeared in Midnight Hour: A Chilling Anthology of Crime Fiction from 20 Authors of Color.

Fred Gray, Ph.D., professor of physics and astronomy, has won renewal of his $250,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for his research titled “Testing Fundamental Symmetries with Muon Experiments.”

An exhibit of works by Robin Hextrum, assistant professor and co-chair of the Fine and Performing Arts department, was featured at the Abend Gallery in Denver. Hextrum’s “Dreams from the Anthropocene,” a collage of imagery from traditional still life and landscape paintings, is intended to call into question the historical foundations of art.

Associate Prof. of English Alyse Knorr’s book GoldenEye, a work of documentary and pop culture analysis, has been published by Boss Fight Books.

Linda Osterlund, Ph.D., academic dean of Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions (RHCHP), was named to Leadership Foundation’s Leadership Denver class of 2023.

Cambridge University Press has published Water and Aid in Mozambique — Gendered Perspectives of Change, by Emily Van Houweling, Ph.D., associate professor in the Master of Development Practice program. Van Houweling offers an alternative perspective on water and the politicized nature of water management in Mozambique.

Creative writing instructor Khadijah Queen has been named a Ford Foundation Disability Futures Fellow. The program spotlights the work of disabled creatives across disciplines and geography in an effort to amplify their voices. Queen, a disabled U.S. Navy veteran, is the author of six books, most recently Anodyne, which won the William Carlos Williams Award from the Poetry Society of America.

Associate Prof. Erin Winterrowd, Ph.D., director of the Women’s and Gender Studies program, has been chosen as a 2022-23 ARC Network Virtual Visiting Scholar. The award includes a stipend, which Winterrowd will use to complete her project on the “child penalty for women of color in STEM.”

Fred Gray R. Alan Brooks Jenny Shank Khadijah Queen

THE CLASS: BL 657 Advanced Field Ecology Laboratory

INSTRUCTORS: Michael Ghedotti, Ph.D., professor of biology. Ichthyologist, gardener, environmental scientist. Tyler Imfeld, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology. Ornithologist, birder, environmental scientist.

ABOUT THE COURSE: This laboratory course is centered on service-learning experiences that provide students with applicable field-ecology experience while helping local environmental professionals address applied questions about conservation and environmental management.

STUDENTS ARE: Students in the Master of Science in Environmental Biology Program who are seeking careers in environmental consulting, environmental management and conservation and/or environmental research.

TEXT & MATERIALS: Published scientific literature found using Regis library resources; laptop for data analysis; field guides for identification of plants and birds; sturdy hiking boots, water bottle, sunscreen, field clothes and a love of the outdoors.

CLASSWORK: This course seeks to engage students with the practice of using ecological data to understand our environment and inform real-world decisions they may need to make in their future careers. This laboratory and much of the curriculum of the Master of Science in Environmental Biology Program is centered on service learning in which the class collaborates with land managers and conservationists from Denver Mountain Parks, the Highlands Ranch Community Association and City of Louisville Open Space. Students design field studies in collaboration with these agencies to directly answer questions proposed by professional land managers. Students work directly with these professionals, gaining a better understanding of their future profession and a resume-enhancing experience.

The weekly laboratories vary in content and venue. Field experiences in and around the Denver Metro area include assessing grassland plants and soil microbes at Red Rocks Park and Daniels Park, assessing stream health after the Marshall fire in Clear Creek in Louisville, and bird surveys along Clear Creek in Wheat Ridge. Experiences inside the laboratory include identification of the various animals and plants important in environmental assessment, data management and analysis and completion of final presentations and reports for our professional partners.

Students gain both the academic skills needed to scientifically assess ecological health and the professional skills of ecological management in the real world. The environmental professionals with whom they work make the real-world considerations clear and help students learn how professionals balance scientific knowledge with political, social and economic realities. The final course projects are a scientific presentation and a report to the professionals at the agencies. As a course centered on service learning, the goal is to provide students with the knowledge and experience to advance their own career aspirations while substantively helping our professional partners to understand and manage the impressive landscapes under their care.



What’s one thing you brought to campus that you couldn’t imagine your life without?

name : Chris Androlowicz graduating year : 2023 major : Information Technology answer : “I like to think I bring a sort of… welcomeness, I’m very welcoming of people so hopefully people think that of me. There are also some things I can’t imagine not having, like pictures of my family to remind me of back home.”

name : Grant Mueller graduating year : 2026 major : Undecided answer : “Printed pictures of my friends.”

name : Eleanor Hebert graduating year : 2026

major : Environmental Studies, Peace and Justice Studies Double Major answer : “An emphasis on sustainability. So, coming in with a mindset of wanting to make campus more sustainable and thinking about ways we could engage the student body in unity in pursuing sustainability.”

name : Erika Nolasco graduating year : 2025 major : Nursing answer : “Being compassionate. To and for others.”

name : Matteo Colombo graduating year : 2026 major : Business Administration answer : “A positive mentality.”

name : Gabriel Espinoza graduating year : 2026 major : Accounting answer : “My water bottle because I’ve had it for two years. I second Matteo’s answer but he said it first.”

name : Kana Wiegand graduating year : 2023 major : Music Education answer : “I couldn’t live without music.”

name : Elena Visoso graduating year : 2023 major : Spanish and English Language double major answer : “An open mind because every day can be a new experience. You can meet new people, or you’ll just learn something new in class.”

Photos: Jacob Garcia

Peer Minister Sheccid Apodaca balances faith, family and academic excellence

When Regis junior Sheccid Apodaca’s five younger siblings ask what she does in her free time, she jokes that between homework and volunteering with University Ministry, she doesn’t really have any.

She knows a thing or two about balancing a busy schedule: She’s studying elementary education and serves as a peer minister to the University’s commuter students. She has another priority, too: acting as role model to her younger brothers and sister, ages 5 to 12. Apodaca, a first-generation college student, is a graduate of Denver’s Arrupe Jesuit High School and won the Arrupe-Regis Scholarship, which covers her tuition and student fees for four years. Typically, the scholarship is awarded annually to nine Arrupe seniors who demonstrate strong academic performance, character and the ability to be a strong role model.

As much as Apodaca jokes about it, college life can get overwhelming. When it does, Apodaca takes a few moments of quiet to connect with her Catholic faith. Whether it’s carving out time for reflection in her dorm room or taking visiting St. Catherine of Siena’s Adoration Chapel on Federal Boulevard for 15 minutes, Apodaca finds that a few interludes of peace impact her day.

“That really helps me reconnect with God and breathe for a little bit,” she said.

During her first two years at Regis, she commuted to campus. As a peer minister, her goal is to be a faith resource helping commuter students feel connected, and to offer friendship and guidance. This year, living on campus, she has the chance to fully experience college life, and she hopes to help commuter students feel the same connection.

“The biggest drive for me applying to be a peer minister was looking for more of a community. It was definitely difficult to drive back and forth and not be able to be here for afterschool events,” she said. “I really wanted to help commuter students feel welcome at Regis.”

The role also allows her to connect with her faith. Before entering Regis, she worried that she might not have many opportunities to do that. But that fear subsided when she learned about University Ministry.

“When I heard about University Ministry and the focus they have on the spiritual — that really gave me a sense of relief,” Apodaca said. “I could still practice my faith and I could still help people find that spiritual peace or connection with God if that’s what they believe in.”

Apodaca traces her interest in studying education to her five younger siblings. “Growing up around a lot of children was never a bad thing for me. I’ve always loved spending time with children,” she said.

Regis allows education students to apply for dual licensure in elementary and special education, which aligns with Apodaca’s career goals. “I want to be able to work with children with special needs, working one-on-one with those students who need a little bit more support,” she said. Apodaca said her brothers and sister want to attend college, and it makes a difference to see someone who looks like them doing it. As first-generation student, Apodaca said she was initially nervous, but found support in Regis’ Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusive Excellence and the Office of First Year Experience. At orientation weekend, she met students who, like her, also spoke Spanish and who could help her navigate orientation. Apodaca wants to provide the same support to other first-generation students — and to her younger siblings.

“I feel like I’m giving them a lot of hope and reassurance that they can go to college, too, and it’s OK to look different and it’s OK to speak a different language other than English.” ~ SK

Photo: Brett Stakelin

In September, we welcomed more than 450 parents, families, current and prospective students as well as Regis and Loretto Heights College alumni to campus for Blue & Gold Weekend.

The second annual event was a weekend to remember, featuring more than 50 events, including class reunions, college networking opportunities, athletic games and more.

Through it all, we were reminded that our Regis community is what Blue & Gold Weekend is all about.

You represent a special place in our memories of yesterday, the Regis of today and our visions for tomorrow.

We can’t wait to welcome you home again next fall — save the date for Blue & Gold Weekend 2023, Sept. 21-24!

May our shared blue and gold pride continue to run deep. RELIVE




One night in 1944, U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Martin Boone, Sr., and his bomber crew dropped a couple tons of explosive destruction on Nazi Germany, then turned their B-24 back toward home base in England. They never made it.

The B-24 Liberator was shot down over occupied France that night. Several members of the crew died when the plane crashed into a farm field, but Boone survived.

For generations to come, that would be the last time a member of Boone’s family headed into harm’s way without saintly protection.

In World War II, Boone was a crew chief and pilot in the Army Air Corps, the precursor to the U.S. Air Force. Later, he would become stepfather to Mike Redmond, Regis’ associate vice president of physical plant and capital projects.

Redmond said his stepfather flew B-17s until the Army started to prefer B-24 bombers, partly because the Liberator could fly farther and carry more payload. Crews who flew them though, complained the B-24s were more vulnerable to enemy gunfire. They nicknamed them “the flying coffin” because there was only one exit, which made

escaping a doomed plane extremely difficult. Boone and his crew — typically seven to 10 men — were on their way back to base in England in their bomber, which they’d named the Never Mrs., when enemy fire downed the plane.

Boone and his crew crash-landed the Never Mrs. near the Belgian border. With help and shelter from members of the French Resistance, the crew improvised repairs to the damaged aircraft.

Although France had surrendered to the Nazis in 1940 and was officially under German control, secret cells of opposition had been operating throughout the country ever since, aiding the Allies in various ways, including forming networks that helped soldiers and airmen.

Along the way, one of those resistance volunteers gave Boone something he — and later generations of his family who likewise served their country — would treasure: a Medaille Miraculenuse, or Miraculous Medal.

While many men went into battle protected by St. Christopher — the patron saint of travelers, bachelors and transportation, among others — the Resistance volunteers chose to bestow a medal that offered what might be called a higher level of protection, and a particular favorite among the French faithful.

The Medaille Miraculenuse, or Miraculous Medal, is a favorite of French people, including members of the French Resistance, who presented this one to Mike Redmond’s stepfather during World War II.

Those faithful believe that the Virgin Mary herself designed the medal. According to, when Mary appeared to St. Catherine Laboure for the second time in November 1830, the vision contained the basis for the medal, and the inscription: “O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.” When Mary spoke to St. Catherine, she told her to create a medal, and promised that “Those who wear it will receive great graces, especially if they wear it around the neck.”

Which is just what Sgt. Boone did. Eventually, the remaining crew flew the crippled Never Mrs. to Sweden — officially a neutral country — where she landed on her one still-working engine. Still more repairs allowed the plane to hobble back to England, where Boone was assigned to another plane — only to crash land again in Sweden.

Boone spent the rest of the war interned outside Stockholm. When he came home, he brought a Swedish bride, and the medal, with him.

Boone and his wife had four children before divorcing. Not long afterward, he became re-acquainted with an old friend named Rose Anne, a widowed mother of four children that included a young Mike Redmond. “My dad died when I was five months old,” Redmond said.

“My mom and my stepdad knew each other growing up,” Redmond said. When they reconnected, “He had four kids, we had four kids.” Initially the large, blended family lived in New York City; later they moved out to Long Island.

Years later, when it was Redmond’s turn to serve, much had changed since World War II. The Vietnam War deeply divided Americans, with many calling the conflict unjustified and openly questioning the judgement of the government and the military that were waging it.

Nevertheless, Redmond followed two of his brothers and enlisted in 1973. “I needed something to level me out,” he said. “The Air Force did that.” While he is technically a Vietnam-era veteran, he didn’t see combat there, but one of his brothers did. “…and it changed his life and personality forever.”

Redmond worked with Air Force civil engineers establishing and maintaining U.S. air bases in Thailand and South Korea. Those bases supported the United States’ mission in Vietnam; for much of the war Thailand served

When Mike Redmond served overseas during the Vietnam War, he took his stepfather’s medal with him.

as a major staging site for aircraft that conducted bombing raids over the border.

Later, he would view the war as being handled incorrectly and his brothers would question the political system that pursued it. “But the original intent to stop the spread of [Communist] aggression never went away. While our country wanted an end to an unjust war, the threats still remained,” he said.

When Redmond left the country, the Miraculous Medal went with him.

His stepfather had the medal blessed, then gave it to him, passing along the protection it provided to another generation.

Redmond can attest that men fighting for their county often relied on divine protection, which they proudly wore around their necks. “In my 21-year career in the military… I used to verify the items they would be taking in deployment and would see many who had [a] medal. It is a great feeling to have your faith when you are going into unknown territories.”

Fast forward a couple of decades, and Redmond’s son, Sean Redmond, followed family tradition by enlisting in the military. Generations of family members with military experience — both on his father’s and his mother’s side — advised him to stick to aviation. So, he turned to air traffic control in the Navy, which he eventually left to spend a couple of frustrating years as “the most over-qualified truck driver ever.”


Once again, military service called. The second time around though, he chose the Marine Corps. “Boot camp at 30 nearly killed me,” he said, and becoming a corporal at that age, with younger people outranking him, was also a challenge.

But the Marines put his air traffic control skills and experience to work fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan twice. Of course, he didn’t go alone. “Getting ready to deploy, my dad pulled me off to the side and explained the significance of the medal to him. I promised I would bring it back, and I did.”

His second Afghan deployment with the Marines put him at a helicopter landing zone and refueling point in Helmand Province. In addition to improving the landing zone, Marines there were charged with stabilizing wounded fighters who were being evacuated to the British-operated Camp Bastion.

“Pretty much if somebody was hurt and they weren’t going to live long enough to get to Bastion, they’d stop off with us.” Sean Redmond is proud his Marines were able to reduce the transfer time between the base and a hospital from nearly an hour to less than 20 minutes. “In the last six months we did not lose a single case,” he said.

Meaningful as that achievement was, “What’s rewarding was that I came home with all my guys,” he said.

He doesn’t see as many servicemen and women with likenesses of saints dangling from their necks as his father did. “That’s a concept that’s slowly being lost through the generations,” he said.

“But knowing how much it means to [his father] it meant a lot to me as well. “It was important to have it with me while I was deployed,” both with the Navy and the Marine Corps. Now in his 23rd year with the Marines, Sean Redmond is stationed at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma in Arizona and contemplating still more years of service with the Marines.

Both Redmonds say they are proud of their service and grateful for the opportunities it gave them.

“When I see adversity and freedom of speech it makes me proud because I have seen many other countries, where such things aren’t tolerated,” Mike Redmond said.

“At the end of my life on this Earth I will provide the medal to Sean for safe keeping. I am sure it will be used again because our family has 96 years of military service to their country.”

The B-24 Liberator nicknamed the Never Mrs., of the 453rd Bomb Group, completed 69 missions before it was shot down in 1944, according to the American Air Museum in Britain.



Everest photos by Evan Green

In the halls of Centaurus High School in Lafayette, Colo., kids call Eddie Taylor “the teacher who climbed Everest.” Ordinarily, Taylor doesn’t talk much at school about his beyond-the-classroom passions: climbing rocks and climbing mountains. This fall, however, he didn’t have to tell students how he spent the last few months of the spring semester. Because when Taylor summited Mount Everest May 12, with the first all-Black climbing team to do so, he made history — and headlines.

The climb made news throughout the summer, with the 11-person climbing team featured in just about every major news outlet in the United States. When the school year started in August, reporters were still calling, but Taylor turned his attention to students. A 2015 Regis Master of Education alumnus who teaches chemistry and is head track coach at Centaurus, Taylor isn’t one for grabbing the spotlight. Before last spring, he doubted that any of his students knew that when he’s not at school, he’s climbing, taking trips in the hours before or after class up Boulder Canyon or to Eldorado Canyon outside Boulder. That is because during the school day, Taylor is all about his students.

But news of his achievement soon filtered into the classroom — and that represents what the climbing team was trying to achieve: encouraging inclusion in the outdoors. Data from the National Park Service show that visitors to U.S. National Parks are disproportionately white. The 2021 Outdoor Participation Trends Report, commissioned by the Outdoor Foundation, found that participation in outdoor recreation reached record levels in

Eddie Taylor crosses the fixed line between Camp 1 and Camp 2. This valley between Nuptse and Everest is known as the Western Cwm, pronounced “quim”. Regis alumnus makes history as part of the first all-Black team to summit Everest

2020, but nearly 75 percent of those enjoying the outside were white.

In a 2018 survey, the Park Service found that barriers to visiting parks included distance, transportation and travel expenses. The Journal of Park and Recreation Administration reported in 2020 that marketing efforts focused on reducing barriers to the outdoors — from increasing programming directed toward people of color to providing financial aid and youth programming — had been implemented, but ultimately those efforts hadn’t been sustained to encourage repeat visits. The study suggested that agencies could make greater efforts to encourage and maintain inclusion in outdoor activities after visitors make their first trip.

This disparity extends far past the United States. According to most estimates, about 4,000 people have summited Everest since Sir

Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay completed the first recorded ascent in 1953. But most estimates put the number of Black people who have ascended the 29,035-foot mountain at fewer than 10. When Taylor and his Full Circle Everest team made the summit, they nearly doubled that number. Seven of the 11 team members made it to the top, adding their names to an elite group of climbers.


Taylor’s climb to the top of the world’s highest mountain began after one serendipitous encounter.

Taylor was visiting Ouray, Colo., on an ice climbing trip two years ago with his wife, Anna Taylor, when they ran into Phil Henderson, an experienced climber who has worked in the outdoor industry for nearly 30 years. Henderson has been on

expeditions to Everest, Alaska’s Denali and 17,000-foot Mount Kenya. In 2018, he led the first all-Black ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Africa’s highest mountain.

Henderson had trained guides on many expeditions — and rarely were any of them Black. Henderson often was the only Black man on an expedition, and he wanted to change that.

During that encounter in Ouray, Taylor and Henderson chatted, traded phone numbers and went skiing a month later. Soon after that trip Henderson asked Taylor if he would be interested in joining Full Circle, an all-Black team of climbers from across the United States. Their goal was to summit Everest.

Initially, Taylor wasn’t so sure, especially as he thought about how difficult it would be to balance the climb with his teaching and coaching schedules. A May summit would mean missing out on the last couple of months of school — and the chance to send off his seniors.

But Taylor said his wife, a first-grade teacher at Meadowlark School in Erie, Colo., encouraged him to think about it. Even though he felt more passionate about rock climbing, he had the skills to climb Everest: He had already climbed some of the world’s highest peaks, including Aconcagua, in Argentina, the highest mountain in the Americas.

“She actually saw the importance of this trip before I did and said, ‘If you think you want to be part of this even a little bit, you should really consider it.’ She’s a climber, so she gets it,” Taylor said. “She was really positive about it… She’s been supportive the whole time.”

Anna Taylor said Henderson’s leadership and vision for the expedition was inspiring.

Eddie Taylor puts on crampons after leaving base camp to start crossing the tricky terrain of the ice fall. The team traversed the icefall at night because temperatures were lower which reduces melting and potential for collapse of the glacier.

“The mission of the Full Circle team was already present once Eddie was on board. It was just something that seemed like an opportunity that we couldn't let go at that point,” she said. “It’s a little scary to send your spouse to Everest but having been in the mountains with Eddie for years, I knew what his decision-making was. I knew that he was probably the most trustworthy person I've ever been in the mountains with.”

Taylor took her advice and signed on. He said he didn’t train specifically for Everest — but that’s because he spends so much time outdoors on a regular basis.

“I’ve been climbing and skiing for a long time, so being in the mountains is something that I regularly do,” he said. “I just ramped it up a little bit.”

In April, Taylor and the team flew into Kathmandu, Nepal, then traveled to Lukla, Nepal, a town 9,383 feet above sea level. From Lukla they set off on

foot to basecamp. The team hiked 25 miles over 10 days, gaining almost 10,000 feet of elevation. It takes more than a week to reach basecamp, Taylor said, because bodies need time to adjust to the altitude. At camp, the team ate food prepared for them by a Nepalese chef.

“Once you get to basecamp, that’s when the actual mountain-climbing starts,” Taylor said. “A lot of people go to basecamp. And that’s the end of their trip. It’s really exciting just to see basecamp and get that high up… that’s a really cool experience in itself.”

The team didn’t need to go any further to make history — they were already part of the first all-Black expedition to make it to basecamp. When they did, they shared the historic moment with kids across the United States by giving a presentation via Microsoft Flipgrid. The weekly show, broadcast nationally over the

educational technology platform, was shown both at his school and in his wife’s school.

May 11 offered a window of peak weather conditions, allowing them, with the assistance of sherpas, to leave basecamp and safely work toward the summit. Taylor said the team brought duffel bags of supplies with them, ranging from snacks to tents to computers, and most of it had to be left behind once they started climbing. Only the essentials, including their heavy-duty hiking boots and suits and some food, made the final journey with them. Once they left for the summit, they ate dehydrated food, melting snow and boiling water to cook it. The oxygen gets thinner as they ascend, forcing climbers to wear oxygen masks as they summit. Some members of the team stayed at basecamp and the rest, led by sherpas, made the precarious final 12,000-foot journey to the top.

With access to Colorado’s mountains, Taylor said he didn’t have to undertake specialized training, but just “ramped up” his normal climbing. Photo: Barry “Bear” Gutierrez. “AFTER FULL CIRCLE EVEREST MADE PUBLIC ITS PLANS FOR AN ALL-BLACK TEAM TO SUMMIT THE MOUNTAIN, THE GROUP GAINED MAJOR EQUIPMENT SPONSORS WHO HELPED OFFSET THE COST.” ~ EDDIE TAYLOR

Anna Taylor said the team updated her during the final ascent, which eased her anxiety during the final hours of the climb. Base camp has access to WiFi, so the couple could talk — even with the 11-hour-and-45-minute time difference. They often spoke via Facetime when one was going to bed and the other was waking up. When the team moved higher up the mountain, Henderson shared updates with families.

On the morning of May 12, they reached the summit, breaking a symbolic barrier. Throughout the climb, Anna said, she shared the ascent with her students, displaying a poster in different hallways at her school with a climber icon progressively working toward an illustrated summit.

“The day that I put the little icon up to the summit, all the kids came into the hallway and were cheering,” she said.

“And so, it was really special.”

Months after the climb, Taylor reflected on how it felt to be part of the team.

“It's not like we're the first people to climb Everest — we're not even the first Black people to climb it,” Taylor said.

“It was an idea we had, and we raised the money, and we went and did it.”

On a broader scale, he said the media coverage has amplified the impact of the team’s summit, opening up opportunities for greater diversity in outdoor activities.

“In general, most people aren’t outdoorsy people, but if your parents are outdoorsy, it’s a lot easier for you to be outdoorsy,” he said. “If I go and I look online, I don’t see anyone who looks like me doing those things.” Representation in media, he said, makes a difference for kids who might not otherwise see themselves in the outdoors.

The media coverage also opened up opportunities for the team itself. When Taylor joined Full Circle two years ago, it didn’t have any sponsorships. But after the team went public with their plans in 2021, they gained major sponsors, including The North Face and The VF Foundation, that helped fund materials for the trip.

After the team returned from Everest, Taylor said, people reached out with stories of their own. Some were motivated to pick hiking up again after years. For others, their climb was motivation to walk around the block more.

“What’s really cool, though, is that it’s not just inspiring people of color,” Taylor said, adding that growing up, he didn’t necessarily think about Everest, other than seeing news coverage about the 1996 disaster in which eight climbers died after they were caught in a blizzard. “Kids are seeing this as a place that people can aspire to go and they can have a really fun

Everest climbers use a lot of specialized equipment but for this crevasse crossing in the icefall, the team used two standard ladders tied together.

enjoyable time, and experience a culture and place that is nothing like where they are from. It’s not just the Black community or the people of color community — it’s Colorado.”

Before Taylor left for Everest, he went to his wife’s school to participate in an assembly.

“He had students trying on his boots and his jacket. So, it just made it so much more real for them,” Anna said. “The whole school was really invested, as were students across the country.”

For Taylor, inspiring kids is a regular part of his day job.


After Taylor completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Colorado Boulder, he started working as a water chemist.

“It was a really good job — I really enjoyed it. I got to spend a little bit of time outside, I got to run equipment and whatnot,” he said.

But then, he started coaching track at Broomfield High School.

“I really fell in love with coaching and working with the kids,” Taylor said. “I was going to my other job all day just to leave and go to coach.”

Taylor said he started to feel jealous of the other coaches who were teachers because they got to spend the entire day working with kids. He thought about becoming a teacher, but he waited a couple of years to be sure. When the feeling stuck, he enrolled at Regis to earn his master’s degree.

“Regis was the best fit for me,” he said, adding that he took most of his classes in the evenings. “I really wanted to still be on campus and not just virtual.”

When he got into his first classroom as a teacher, Taylor said he felt prepared.

At Centaurus, Taylor didn’t talk much about the Everest climb as he prepared.

“I kind of make it about them,” he said. “Most of our conversations are: ‘How’s your day going? How was volleyball? How was your last basketball game?”


Sports always came naturally to Taylor, who was on the track and field team at the University of Colorado as an undergraduate.

Kate Kelleghan, a friend who often rock climbs with Taylor and his wife, summed up her initial reaction to the Everest trip: “Not super surprised,” she said. “It was kind of a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

But as easily as outdoor sports came to Taylor, he didn’t always feel passionate about the outdoors. He moved a lot growing up, and his mom often took him to national parks in the west, learning to camp, fish and hike. When he went to high school in Minnesota, and college in Colorado, playing more traditional sports meant he didn’t spend much time doing outdoor recreation.

After college, he got into outdoor sports. “I really started putting all of that focus that I had in track and field into climbing,” Taylor said.

Taylor said that he thinks his time as a collegiate athlete gave him the skills to thrive in the outdoors. “In college, I learned how to train, be dedicated, how to actually improve in something, how to take criticism and feedback and make it better,” he said. “And that’s a skill I feel like I picked up running track in college. You have to figure those things out.”

He soon began traveling for his outdoor pursuits, taking on the highest peaks in the world, including climbing Aconcagua and skiing Denali in Alaska. Taylor also traveled across the west and into Canada to rock climb. Since Taylor and his wife are both teachers, they often spend their summers traveling. On their honeymoon, they visited Africa, climbing in Kenya and Madagascar. Over the summer, they traveled to Wyoming to spend time outdoors.

Taylor said he doesn’t plan to climb Everest again, but he hopes to one day return to Nepal with his family. Now, he’s looking toward his next Everest-size adventure: becoming a parent. The Taylors welcomed their first child, a daughter, on Sept. 20.


Regis alumni and faculty are responding to the war in Ukraine


When Russia invaded Ukraine in February, tension across Europe was palpable — but soon, that turned to action. Regis alumni and faculty are among those taking action — braving conflict and putting themselves at risk to help those whose lives have been upended by war.

Farnaz Alimehri, a 2015 graduate, transported Ukrainians to safety, helped a refugee family settle in Vienna, Austria and has carried supplies across multiple borders.

Alumnus Jonathan Cochran put his project management skills to work, mobilizing resources in Bulgaria to help bring Ukranian refugees to the country.

Assistant Prof. Josh Kreimeyer has traveled to Ukraine, Poland, Austria and Hungary, offering training to mental health professionals working with Ukrainians. Each observed Ukrainian resilience in the face of war. Alimehri, Cochran and Kreimeyer shared their stories.

Ukrainians installed a war memorial in the streets of Khmelnitsky in May in remembrance of fallen soldiers. Regis Assistant Prof. Josh Kreimeyer visited the country to provide mental health training to Ukrainian providers.

Courtesy: Josh Kreimeyer.

Farnaz Alimehri AUSTRIA

After the war started in Ukraine, Farnaz Alimehri hopped into a rental van loaded with supplies and drove nearly nine hours from Vienna, Austria to the Ukrainian border. Alimehri, who graduated from Regis in 2015 with a degree in politics and minors in Spanish and French, and earned a degree in Security Studies from Georgetown University in 2017, is an associate training officer in the Safeguards Department at the International Atomic Energy Agency, an autonomous organization within the United Nations that works worldwide to promote the safe and peaceful use of nuclear technologies. Her job is to train nuclear inspectors, many of whom have been in the news recently for their work in Ukraine

verifying that nuclear material and technology is accounted for and used properly, Alimehri said. They also conduct similar inspections in Iran.

Based in Vienna, Alimehri is roughly 800 miles from the Ukrainian border. As the world watched the Russian invasion unfold, a colleague enlisted volunteers to pick people up from the border. He had two requirements of recruits: that they could speak multiple languages and drive. Alimehri, who speaks English, Farsi, French, Spanish and basic German, could do both.

“He had this idea to rent vans and get people away from the border as quickly as possible, the idea being that when refugee centers are rapidly set up like this, they’re very disorganized. They’re targets for human trafficking, and we didn’t know how and when the violence might spread,” she said. “We were just thinking, ‘We have to act quickly.’”

When they arrived, Alimehri and her colleagues dropped donations off at a refugee center in Przemysl, Poland, and began walking around, offering people rides back to Austria.

“When I went, we were pretty lucky that we found people fairly quickly — people who wanted to go to different European countries to see their family members or their friends and people who just wanted to leave the refugee center,” Alimehri said.

The first night, the team took 12 people back to Vienna. Alimehri drove a mother and her twin daughters and another mother and her daughter. Alimehri helped the mother with twin daughters find an apartment in Vienna.

After the Russian invasion, many of Ukraine’s neighbors to the west have offered aid.

As the war evolved, so did the response led by Alimehri and her colleagues. The team continued driving refugees from the border, then helped other Non-Governmental Organizations. Their group took on an official name: the Vienna Mission for Ukraine. Soon, the organization started working for Insulin for Life, helping transport insulin to the country. They also conducted several supply and rescue missions for orphanages in Ukraine. The organization continues to offer support to a network of refugees in Vienna.

The mission continues to evolve, from helping reunite families to providing supplies to people in need. The family Alimehri helped settle in Vienna has begun to adjust to life in a strange country, enrolling the children in school. Every day, though, they communicate with family members back in Ukraine to ensure they are OK. Men under the age of 60 were not permitted to leave the country, so they remained in Ukraine. One of the mothers Alimehri drove to Austria eventually returned to Kyiv. Alimehri said they refused to be known as refugees and wanted to stay in their home country.

Alimehri was struck by similarities between herself and the mother of twins she helped.

“I’m not a mother, but we like the same things, we have similar interests, we dress very similarly. She’s not different from me in a lot of ways, but something bad just happened to her country,” Alimehri said. “It’s very sobering to think ‘Oh, wow, this could happen to anyone.’”


When Assistant Prof. Josh Kreimeyer returned to Ukraine last summer, he was struck by images of war in otherwise idyllic Ukrainian villages. Sandbags and trenches lined the city streets. Courtesy: Josh Kreimeyer.

Jonathan Cochran BULGARIA

Before he moved to Bulgaria, Jonathan Cochran served as a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy. So, when the war started in Ukraine, the situation felt familiar.

“I’ve been in the military and war environment many times before,” Cochran said. “I didn’t care to get back into it again, but events happen, and life drags us into this stuff.”

Cochran, who graduated from Regis in 2020 with a master’s degree in Project Management, works as the vice president of Project Management Institute (PMI) of Bulgaria, which is based in the country’s capital, Sofia. When the war started, Cochran and his colleagues at PMI knew they needed to find a way to help.

“We said, ‘Let’s do something’ because people are coming out of Ukraine, and they’re just trying to survive and they need help,” Cochran said.

Cochran said they began calling local organizations, enlisting bus companies and taxis to help drive and take people away from the border. Additionally, they worked with IT companies to help ensure lines of communication remained open so that people could secure help. Additionally, the group has started a medical and rehabilitation center for people from Ukraine. Cochran said they are in the process of setting up a prosthetics clinic for people who lost extremities.

“Here in Bulgaria, people have opened up their homes, and the people from Ukraine are staying as guests in their homes,” he said, adding that many people in Bulgaria have multiple homes, which they opened up to Ukrainians.

Throughout the war, Cochran has communicated with Ukrainians, sending coded messages to learn about their locations and help them get to safety. In March, Cochran communicated with a family with a newborn baby. “Millions were in a similar situation,” he said.

“It’s almost like we’re running military operations here just to help people,” he said. “They don’t know who to believe, who to trust. So, we’re having to be creative on how to get people networked.”

For Cochran and his colleagues, coordinating the logistics of getting people to safety aligned with the organization’s mission and their skills. PMI Bulgaria worked with chapters in other nearby countries to assist with the effort.

“Normally, we’re in an education role and membership training role. We assist with doing projects for businesses and education centers,” Cochran said. “But when this humanitarian crisis came forward, our chapter and chapters in other countries in Europe said, ‘Let’s get together because we have the skills to organize and run a humanitarian crisis project.’”

Street art in Ukraine captures the spirit of resistance to the war. Josh Kreimeyer said the artwork is common in Ukraine. The image to the left depicts two incidents, one in which Ukrainian farmers pulled tanks off the battlefield and another in which military forces sank a high-tech Russian warship. The center image represents Ukrainian requests for other countries to protect their skies from Russian aircraft. The image on the right depicts a young girl resisting the invasion. Courtesy: Josh Kreimeyer.

Josh Kreimeyer


Regis Counseling and Family Therapy

Assistant Prof. Josh Kreimeyer was in Ukraine in February one week before Russians invaded. In partnership with the United Nations International Office of Migration, Kreimeyer was working with Ukrainian military families, conducting retreats for veterans and soldiers, many of whom had already been fighting on the front in anticipation of the invasion.

When the invasion happened, Kreimeyer said, “it was surreal.”

Kreimeyer had spent the past few years conducting training with military families and psychologists working with service members. Few people were as prepared as Kreimeyer to assist Ukrainians needing mental health resources. But when he saw the scale of the invasion, Kreimeyer found it difficult to leave the country.

“I had a lot of deep emotions when I came back and realized what was happening there,” Kreimeyer said. “I was glad to be safely at home, but I felt very tormented around the idea that I couldn't be there. I actually pulled up an application for the Ukrainian Foreign Legion.”

A veteran of the U.S. Army, Kreimeyer knew he needed to find a way to help. That’s when participants of his past training began to call. The people that were in those trainings reached out and said, ‘We are so glad you did that training with us right before this because now we know what you were talking about,’” Kreimeyer said. “That helped me quite a bit. That helped me realize: ‘OK, I’m here and there are things I can still do.’”

In May, Kreimeyer decided he needed to go back. Over the summer, he assembled a team of Colorado mental health professionals with connections to Ukraine. That group traveled to Europe, making stops in Ukraine, Poland and Hungary to offer compassion fatigue training to professionals providing aid, including doctors, psychologists and church leaders. Many of them were also refugees.

Kreimeyer said the team traveled to Poland because many refugees ended up in the country. When the team traveled to Ukraine, they were faced with uncertainty.

“To be frank, we didn't know exactly how crossing the border even would be into Ukraine,” Kreimeyer said. “We really were just like, ‘we know we need to be here, and we'll figure it out.’”

Once the team made it over the border, Kreimeyer was stunned by the changes war brought to the Ukraine he had come to know.

“These quiet, peaceful, idyllic little Ukrainian villages that I had been in — every single one of them had sandbags, fighting positions or fox holes, trenches dug at the edge of each town,” Kreimeyer said. Later, the team downloaded an app that alerted them to incoming missiles. “It went off all the time.”

Still, each time the app rang out, Ukrainians went about their day, which Kreimeyer saw as a harrowing act of defiance.

In August, Kreimeyer, his daughter, Regis junior and political science major Greta Kreimeyer and Regis student Jennifer Nash, a marriage and family therapy master’s degree candidates, traveled to Austria to host a retreat for refugees and professionals who work with refugees.

Kreimeyer plans to leave Regis in December — but his work with Ukraine and with Regis students will continue. He hopes to offer clinical training students who are interested in working with Ukrainians.

This past summer, Kreimeyer saw first-hand the strength of Ukrainian resilience.

“The Ukrainian people are peaceful people who are very enamored with their land,” Kreimeyer said. “But they're also willing to fight. They know what they're fighting for, and it’s the land. It's in their blood.”


Regis Professor Had a Few Bones to Pick

Hundreds of artifacts from the 1932-33 Dent site excavation are catalogued and housed at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science’s Avenir Conservation Center.

About the only label Regis’ Brown and Gold newspaper scribes didn’t apply to the mammoth assembled from the Ice Age bones a professor and his students unearthed in 1932 was the one it deserved: One of the most significant archaeologic finds in Colorado, one that provided early evidence of a culture that was long believed to be the continent’s first human inhabitants.

Ninety years ago this fall, Regis Prof. Rev. Conrad Bilgery, S.J., and a group of students whose names have been lost to time, began an excavation that ultimately pulled from the high plains of Weld County along the South Platte River bones from five adult female and eight young mammoths, and two spear points.

By 1935, the bones had been assembled into two complete mammoth representations. The first was traded to the Carnegie Museum

of Natural History in Pittsburgh, in exchange for “a dinosaur long coveted” by what is now the Denver Museum of Nature & Science (DMNS), the Brown and Gold reported. The second was unveiled at the Denver museum to great local fanfare. The city’s newspapers ran large photos of the specimen; the Rocky Mountain News’ version featured three awestruck children staring up at it, mouths agape.

At the time, few complete mammoth skeletons were on display anywhere; the Brown and Gold cited a curator at New York’s American Museum of Natural History saying none were to be found in this country as of 1929.

Brown and Gold writers went on to breathlessly declare that the display “stands as a lasting memorial to the Regis men who discovered and assisted in exhuming the remains of this prehistoric monster.”

The unlikely story of how a Jesuit priest – and Regis professor unearthed some of Colorado’s greatest prehistoric treasures.
Karen Augé PHOTOS: Barry “Bear” Gutierrez and Courtesy Denver Museum of Nature & Science LEFT: Vertebra of a Mammuthus columbi – or Columbian mammoth. RIGHT: Ulna, or forearm bone, of a Mammuthus columbi. Both artifacts were discovered at the Dent site.

That memorial might never have been created if it weren’t for a few days of relentless spring rain.

By the 1930s, the spear points and the bones of the animals they killed had lain beneath layers of soil for thousands of years. Trains periodically roared over them, crossing the plains of what was by then Weld County in Northern Colorado.

One April morning in 1932, a railroad foreman named Frank Garner went to work in the now-demolished Dent Depot, which sat southeast of the town of Milliken. In those pre-internet, pre-television days, Garner probably had plenty of time to kill between trains and plenty of nothing to look at. But that morning, after days of rain eroded soil, Garner spotted something odd poking out of a nearby gully.

Garner investigated and surmised that the bones belonged to some extremely large animal that no longer roamed around Colorado. And he took home with him a spear

tip of what would become known as Clovis Culture.

Garner told a lot of people about what he found out there along that lonely stretch of track. Some accounts record that one of the people he told was his son, who happened to be a Regis College student. Others say that Garner reported the find to the depot master, Michael Ryan, and it was Ryan’s son who was the Regis student.

Whoever the young scholar was, he alerted his professor, Rev. Conrad Bilgery.

Bilgery was born in Switzerland around 1881. In 1902, he immigrated to the United States, and by 1928, was a Jesuit priest and a mathematics professor at Regis. According to 1930 U.S. Census records, Bilgery lived on campus that year with 29 other priests and Regis faculty members and seven men described as “servants.”

Regis documents don’t make clear whether Bilgery taught anthropology or paleontology, or had formal training in those fields.

ABOVE: From left: Regis Prof. Rev. Conrad Bilgery, S.J.; an unidentified Regis student; Colorado Museum of Natural History trustees Walter C. Mead and Charles H. Hanington; and archaeologist Fred J. Horwath at the Dent site in 1933.

BELOW: Railroad foreman Frank Garner first noticed bones sticking out of the ground near the Dent Depot.


However, several accounts of the Dent site excavations refer to him as a geology professor.

In 1906, the United States Congress passed the Antiquities Act, which protected archaeological sites on federal land from excavation. But Dent was private property, so Bilgery only needed permission from the railroad and nearby farmers to start digging. As enthusiastically reported in the Brown and Gold, Bilgery and his students began their excavation in September 1932 and continued it through November, “when the approach of winter halted them.”

The following summer, Bilgery enlisted the help of Jesse Figgins, and the dig resumed. Figgins, the first professional director of the Colorado Natural History Museum, as the Denver Museum of Nature & Science was known then, had worked at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington and was a veteran of several archaeological expeditions. Figgins recently has been

exposed as one of Denver’s many prominent Ku Klux Klan members during the 1920s, a stain that tarnishes his achievement here: Guiding the Denver museum to the forefront of a revolutionary change in archaeology, which was recognizing that human beings coexisted with huge and extinct Pleistoceneepoch animals, like mammoths.

In 1932, when Bilgery rounded up some students and headed to Weld County to dig up mammoth bones, it was only seven years since the Scopes “Monkey” Trial riveted and divided the nation. Two of the country’s greatest orators, attorney Clarence Darrow and perennial presidential candidate William Jennings Bryan squared off in a Tennessee courtroom where high school teacher John Scopes was tried for teaching evolution. Scopes was convicted and fined $100 — and evolution became one of the most incendiary topics of the time.

But Bilgery made his thoughts on evolution, and the Earth’s age clear. He frequently spoke on the topic on campus, vehemently refuting

UPPER RIGHT: Drawers of vertebrae and ribs of Columbian mammoths from the Dent site are housed at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science’s Avenir Conservation Center.

BOTTOM: Clovis points, like those in the foreground, are among the oldest tools discovered in North America. In a fair world, they should be called Dent points, according to Steve Nash, director of anthropology at the Denver museum.


what he considered a misguided theory, one he believed that both faith and scientific evidence debunked.

At the time, whether dinosaurs and humans co-existed also was a hot topic of debate, said Bob Brunswig, Ph.D., emeritus professor and research fellow in anthropology at the University of Northern Colorado. Brunswig has studied the site and written extensively about the significance of the Dent findings.

It was also a time when scientists lacked the technology to resolve the debate. It wasn’t until the 1960s that radiocarbon dating became available, Brunswig said.

Thanks to improved dating technology, the consensus now is that the Dent site artifacts date back 11,000 years, Brunswig said.

Excavation tools in the 1930s weren’t much better than technology for dating artifacts, and as a result Bilgery, and even the more experienced Figgins, did significant damage at the site in the course of recovering the bones and spears, Brunswig said.

From his own research, Brunswig has concluded the excavated bones represent “two separate killing events,” an indication that whatever was at location 10,000 or so years ago, it repeatedly drew mammoths. And those early humans knew they were likely to find a few meals there.

While the new mammoth that debuted at the Denver museum in 1935 was big news locally, outside Colorado, the find and its significance barely registered. “It doesn’t get the recognition it deserved,” said Steve Nash, Ph.D., director of anthropology and the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. “The findings were never published, or at least not published properly” in the scientific journals that mattered at the time.

A year after the Regis group did its work in the Weld County soil, another archaeological team in a little town in New Mexico uncovered a set of similar artifacts. That archaeological team was savvy enough to trumpet their findings in the right places. As a result, the people long regarded as the first

ABOVE: An articulated foot of a Columbian mammoth. BELOW: A section of Columbian mammoth tooth.
“The Dent site findings were significant, and don’t get the widespread recognition they deserve.”
Steve Nash, Denver Museum of Nature & Science

The March 1935 debut of a life-size mammoth display — assembled from Dent-site bones — at the Colorado Museum of Natural History was big news in the Regis Brown and Gold.

human inhabitants who created a widespread culture in the Americas, are known worldwide as Clovis Culture. Although later discoveries cast doubt on Clovis Culture’s claim to be the first North American humans, the culture’s fame lives on.

In a fair world, “It should be called Dent Culture,” Nash said. “But there’s no way to change that now. ‘Clovis’ is entrenched.”

That so many of the artifacts wound up in far-flung museums may be a shame, but according to Nash, it’s not a surprise. “People traded collections like baseball cards back in the day,” he said.

These days, what is left of the Dent discovery at the DMNS is stored – carefully – in drawers and on shelves in a section of the museum that is off-limits to the public. The “antediluvian monster” no longer inspires awed stares at DMNS. The display was removed in 2000, Nash said, to make way for one devoted to space exploration.

Bilgery died in 1945, and was buried in the Regis cemetery then located on campus. And in the 1950s, Frank Garner gave that spear point he took home to the Denver museum.

What Garner, Bilgery, Figgins and those Regis students found discovered buried near that depot lives on, in exhibits and drawers and closets in far-flung museums across the country.

The find “provided insight into early humans and how they hunted,” Brunswig said.

He believes that what has been recovered so far may be but a small percentage of what lies beneath the Dent site. “The better part of that bone bed may be under the railroad tracks,” he said. The tracks belong to Burlington Northern, though, and the railroad, which refused a photographer’s request to visit the site, isn’t likely to allow a mass excavation there.

So, whatever secrets the bones, spears or other artifacts that lie beneath may hold about life in prehistoric Colorado will remain hidden for the foreseeable future.


Kristina Sisneros loves “everything” about her philosophy class, and the Student Center, where she meets her friends. “We hang out, have lunch. We have a good time.”

Jen Anderman’s favorite things about Regis are her dorm room, and her English class, because “I love writing.”

Sophia Whitten puts out flags, pumps up balls and does other tasks to help out the women’s soccer team.

And like college students everywhere, the young women have devised clever ways of dodging parents’ questions about homework and deadlines.

Sisneros, Anderman and Whitten are like college students everywhere, with one exception: They are pioneers.

The three are members of the first class in Regis’ GLOBAL Inclusive College Certificate Program for students with intellectual and

developmental disabilities. And they are finding their place on Regis’ northwest Denver campus and within the Regis community.

Launched this fall, the GLOBAL program provides a collegiate experience for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The program’s goal is to prepare those students for employment and independent living — and thriving in adulthood.

Enrolled students complete 12- to 30 credit hours using a combination of modifications and accommodations. Peer mentors help with practical things like navigating around campus and also share the social knowledge so crucial to a student’s success on campus — like where to have lunch, and how to find extra-curricular activities. Just being a familiar face, and a friend. The Regis mentors have been tremendous this semester, said Jeanine Coleman, Ph.D., GLOBAL program director.

Karen Augé and Sara Knuth Student success coaches like Morgan McNeil (center) help GlOBAL students like Sophia Whitten (left) and Grace Grubb (right) navigate the Regis campus and community.

When they complete the program, students will receive a Credential of Completion at the University’s annual commencement ceremonies.

Regis is the nation’s only Jesuit institution to offer higher education to students with intellectual and developmental disabilities and the only private university in the state to do so. In Colorado, three public institutions — Arapahoe Community College, the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and the University of Northern Colorado — offer inclusive higher education.

Mainstreaming children with intellectual and developmental disabilities in classes has long been a norm in elementary and high schools. But a decade ago, even five years ago, offering them higher education opportunities was all but unthinkable.

Except to Regis Provost Karen Riley, Ph.D. Riley has devoted much of her career and her scholarship to researching and improving the lives of children and families affected by Fragile X syndrome and Down syndrome. For years, she believed providing college opportunities for young adults with those conditions was not only think-able, but do-able — and highly beneficial to everyone that is involved.

When Riley began her career, “infants and preschoolers were the most underserved,” in the intellectual disability community, often because their conditions weren’t diagnosed early enough. Since then, services for the very young “have increased dramatically. And that’s a good thing. Now, the most underserved are students in late adolescence or early adulthood,” she said.

Despite decades of integrating children with intellectual and developmental disabilities into elementary and high school classrooms and school activities, “Post-secondary options are almost unheard of,” Riley said.

“The lack of learning and social opportunities for young adults, particularly those with Down or Fragile X, is potentially damaging,” Riley said, because they are predisposed to developing agoraphobia. Without opportunities after high school, their social circles tend to shrink and isolation can set in.

The GLOBAL program is initially financed through a more than $600,000 grant from the Anna and John J. Sie Foundation and the Global Down Syndrome Foundation. The goal is to have a program that is self-sustaining after three years, and attracts 20 or so students each year, Riley said.

With the success of the first semester, program leaders are working to gain certification that would make it eligible to offer federal student aid, including Pell grants and work study opportunities, Coleman said.

What’s more, Coleman and Riley said they hope the program’s success — five students, four women and one man, are enrolled in the inaugural class — will inspire other Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) institutions to consider providing similar opportunities for intellectually and developmentally disabled students.

Riley acknowledged that it is unlikely that any GLOBAL students will go on to become engineers or Fortune 500 CEOs. But that isn’t the point, she said. “We’re not about disseminating knowledge anymore. Our job is human development.”

And the GLOBAL experience is about more than academics, she said. It is also about socializing, independent living and gaining life skills and experience. And just overall feelings of belonging and well-being. One of the students, Coleman said, is 35. All her siblings went to college, and now she’s finally getting her chance.

The program also is about helping students like Sisneros, Anderman and Whitten realize their full potential, and showing the rest of the world how broad that potential is.

The GLOBAL program also happens to be very much a perfect reflection of the Regis mission, Riley and Coleman said. “This is a missionspecific space,” she said. “This is God’s work.”

It has also provided Kristina Sisneros a chance to pass on some advice to future students that’s based on her own experience. “Believe in yourself,” she said.

BELOW: Left to right: Left to right: Community adviser Robert Jones and students Jennifer Anderman, Grace Grubb and Jordan Stewart helped write the Regis GLOBAL program's first-semester success story.



When the Spanish first came to the Americas, they brought their Catholic faith with them.

Harder to transport across the Atlantic, though, were the often ornate, elaborate icons and artworks that were integral to practicing and promulgating that faith. So, the colonizers and the indigenous people they converted had to make their own, using materials they found around them. The result is a form of iconic art known as Santos, which endures in both popularity and practice.

This fall, as it does every four years, Regis’ O’Sullivan Art Gallery showcased Santos pieces.

Fine Arts Studio Manager Robert St. John said the 13 local artists whose depictions of iconic Catholic figures are featured hold deep reverence for the custom. “These artists are very committed to this whole tradition of making saints,” he said. For some, Santos have become a family tradition, with multiple sets of families showing their pieces.

Regis’ extensive collection of Santos pieces, which contains nearly 1,000 depictions of holy persons and devotional objects, is well known. The collection, displayed on the third floor of the Dayton Memorial Library, was started by former Regis faculty member Rev. Thomas J. Steele, S.J., who began collecting the objects in the mid-1960s and continued until his death in 2010.

Historically, the depictions of saints were used for devotionals at home and in religious services, and were crafted from local cottonwood and pinon tree, colored with pigments from pinon tree sap. “In this area, the settlers were sort of cut off from a lot of things and they developed these crafts and traditions . . . This included making their own religious objects,” St. John said.

Today’s Santos artists continue the tradition of using local materials, St. John said. “These are all local artists from this area,” St. John said. “They're still using a lot of that older more traditional material.”

For St. John, who retired in October, it’s fitting that the show will close out his tenure at the gallery. When he started 17 years ago, one of his first shows featured Santos, and the pieces have been among his favorite to work with.

“It's my fifth time working with a lot of these artists,” St. John said. “They are so proud of what they do, and so concerned about the quality of what they do, and the subject matter.”


Mental Health Matters

This fall, political and healthcare leaders had an opportunity to see first-hand how Regis’ Center for Counseling and Family Therapy serves the community.

Colorado Lt. Gov. Dianne Primavera and U.S. Rep. Dr. Yadira Caraveo (D-Colo) — both Regis alumni — and Mark Korth, president of the Rocky Mountain Region for Intermountain Healthcare, were among those who toured the center, on Regis’ Thornton Campus, and spoke to guests about the need for greater access to mental health services. Caraveo, a pediatrician, made health care and access to care a key component of her campaign in which she successfully ran to represent Colorado’s eighth Congressional district.

The center, operated through the RueckertHartman College for Health Professions’ Division of Counseling and Family Therapy offers in-person low-cost, or even free counseling services for the surrounding community and teletherapy to anyone in Colorado. At the center, master's-level therapists-in-training meet with clients once a week for an average of 14 weeks. Each client works with the same counselor during that time.

Regis currently is planning to expand the counseling center.

“Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions is providing a solution to the shortage in the healthcare workforce by training future nursing, pharmacy, physical therapy and mental health providers… while simultaneously increasing access to affordable clinical services,” said Linda Osterlund, Ph.D, academic dean of Rueckert-Hartman.


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Regis alumna helps astronauts return to Earth as NASA’s first physical therapist

When NASA’s astronauts return to Earth, Regis alumna and U.S. Air Force Maj. Danielle Anderson — the space agency’s first physical therapist — is there to help them readjust to gravity. It’s a role she has been preparing for since her time at Regis, when she decided that she wanted to help people perform at their best in extreme environments.

Anderson has done that — and more — by taking her career to arguably the most extreme environment: space. Anderson, a 2012 Regis doctor of physical therapy graduate, has been a member of the Air Force since shortly after she graduated. Currently based at Johnson Space Center in Houston, her day-to-day work falls under NASA’s Space Medicine Operations Division, where she regularly achieves her goal: “I wanted to be able to provide services and make [astronauts] feel at their best as they were operating in these really unique, austere environments,” Anderson said.

Anderson provides a spectrum of care to astronauts, from injury prevention to fitness to rehabilitating injuries. When the astronauts return to Earth, Anderson and the human performance team help them get their bodies back to prespace conditions.

In the decades since it first sent humans into space, NASA has studied the impacts of zero-gravity on the body, from vision changes to shifts in blood flow. In space, muscles and bones adapt to the lack of gravity. To help strengthen these muscles while they’re in space, astronauts exercise two hours a day.

Still, this training doesn’t capture all the muscles that people use every day back on Earth. “When we’re not in a weight-bearing environment all the time, our bones aren’t loaded,” she said, like they are under Earth’s gravity.

When astronauts return to Earth, Anderson and her team of two athletic trainers and a strength coach spend two hours a day for 45 days with them, focusing on readapting to gravity. The team’s primary focus is restrengthening astronauts’ mobility, neurovestibular system (reflexes and the perception of movement in relation to gravity),

and cardiovascular system, as well as their strength and endurance.

Since she started last year, Anderson has helped and observed nine astronauts recover from the harsh conditions of space.

When Anderson was considering joining the Air Force as a physical therapist, she remembered clinical training she completed at Regis with former military physical therapists. She admired their skill in caring for patients. “Their level of expertise, their level of care and the way they communicated with their patients was just very different than any environment I had leading up to that,” she said. “I wanted to pursue that excellence.”

She also thought about service members like her cousin, an Army Ranger. “I wanted to support people like him,” she said.

After graduating from Regis, Anderson was commissioned into the Air Force and served in Afghanistan, where she was the physical therapist for service members and members of NATO forces.

After earning a Doctor of Science degree from the Army-Baylor Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Baylor University, she went to Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, where she led an orthopedic and rehab flight and helped set up an orthopedic physical therapy residency.

All her training led her to the ultimate physical therapy position at NASA, modeled after similar programs in special warfare and flying communities in the military. In April, that work was recognized when Anderson was named the Air Force’s Biomedical Clinician of the Year.

For Anderson, the position has been the next leap in a career that has focused on helping people perform at their best. Her husband Justin and daughters, Collins, 5, and Raegan, 3, have helped support her through her career.

Anderson said her time at Regis still impacts her. “The thing I think Regis and the military have in common — and why I love Regis so much — is a sense of service before self,” she said. ~ SK

Courtesy: Danielle Anderson

Shari Repinski enriches the lives of people with disabilities

Shari Repinski has devoted her career to making life better for people with disabilities. That career started in 1986, in a house on Cook Street in Denver. Fresh out of high school and headed to college, she took a job at a group home for children with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The home was part of a then-new approach, one that replaced large institutions for people with disabilities with care in smaller community settings.

For Repinski, working there initially was just a job. It fit in with her schedule; she could choose the shifts she wanted, often working overnight and on weekends as she earned her bachelor’s.

“I never imagined that it would be the starting point for a long-term commitment to working with people who have disabilities,” Repinski said.

Now, 36 years later, Repinski is executive director of Rocky Mountain Human Services (RMHS). She points to those early years on Cook Street as igniting her passion for helping those with disabilities. “I remember having these relationships with the kids and imagining what their lives must have been like in the infirmary [before living in the home]. I think that was my first realization that all people belong and need belonging — and they need to be part of a community.”

At RMHS she is instrumental in making that possible for thousands of people in Colorado.

RMHS serves as an access point to state services like home healthcare, mental health support and speech therapy for qualified individuals (often folks who are Medicaid-eligible and need long-term care). The organization serves about

20,000 people statewide, helping them navigate a complex bureaucratic system. “When people… finally get connected to us, sometimes they’ve made 20 phone calls,” Repinsky says. The organization aims to make accessing services as easy and simple as possible for clients.

When Repinsky became interim executive director at RMHS in May 2015, she was pursuing her MBA through Regis’ flexible program. Months earlier, she’d become chief strategy officer at RMHS after 11 years at the Colorado Department of Human Services.

That spring RMHS hit rocky waters and its board made a leadership change. Repinsky took up the mantle as executive director. Before long, the lessons and strategies she was learning in online (and occasionally in-person) classes at Regis took real, almost tangible shape at RMHS headquarters. “All those strategic management courses… were hugely important at the time that I was trying to do [an organizational] turnaround,” she said. “I felt so much more equipped just in having some validation and affirmation that I was thinking about things in the right way.”

Repinsky finished her MBA in May 2020 and has now led RMHS for seven years. The folders she saved from those strategy classes live on a shelf in her office so she can refer to them easily, and put the skills and approaches she learned at Regis to work keeping RMHS running smoothly and achieving its mission to care for people.

“When you need these kinds of supports, your life is spent trying to figure out how to break through all the layers… to get what you need,” she said. “Our work [at RMHS] should be on how to make that as easy and simple as possible.”

Courtesy: Shari Repinski

Ask Regi

Q :“I go to class. I study. I sleep. Not really a partier. I don't feel like I have much in common with most people but feel like this isolationist attitude isn't in my best interest anymore. Am I normal or should I start seeking therapy?”

A :Yep. You're a total weirdo and I can't believe I'm responding to you. Awww… just yanking your leash. But seriously. Stop with the self-deprecation. You're perfect and maybe just a bit introverted. I'm a solitary forager myself. A loner by nature. A rebel. Not everyone resonates with everyone else. Social butterflies are wonderful folks but rarer than white elks. Besides, you're here for a reason. To grow your mind and snatch that degree, which you will, but there is an element you shouldn't completely ignore. College is social. I'd venture to say as much as it is academic. And sociability is an underrated yet crucial skill you can easily sharpen your fangs on while you're nesting here.

I'd never wish for you to be anything but your truest self, however. In my experience, putting yourself out there, being open-hearted and approachable can lead to waterfalls of good fortune. My old forest friend, Woody Squirrelson once chirped that 80 percent of success is just showing up. And to me, that applies in a social sense also. Risk can be uncomfortable, but it can and will lead to opportunity. Opportunity then leads to connections. And connections lead to free donuts — or at least something wonderful like growth for example. Not the kind that makes it hard to squeeze into your fox hole, but the kind that happens inside.

When I look back at the times I rolled my eyes and barked “hard pass” on experiencing something different, I regretted it. Because while I like to believe there will be another time or something better will come along, the experience may never present itself again. So say yes. Attend something you think you'd never dig. Then let the universe put its own spin on it. Your GPA is important but it ain't everything. In life, I believe you get graded on the culmination of your experiences — not what you know. Like spotting a field-mouse under that snowbank, don't hesitate. Jump in, head-first and snag it. Even if you miss you still get a jowl full of fresh snow and our world is vastly under-hydrated so, a win-win! So, if you're feeling sheepish, I'd encourage you to slip into an event and stalk around — sorry, I mean observe. A discussion, a sporting event, a church event. Start small. I used to hang out on a fox hill and witness the groundhog chatter. I don't speak groundhog and wondered at first if they were talking smack about me but ended up really enjoying the banter even though it made absolutely no sense. Now I rarely miss a meeting. My mantra? Like the Great Pawly Llama once spewed, open heart, open mind, open a window, it smells like rotten cabbage in here. Stay open and unpredictable my friends.

Now is your chance.

A Regis education may be just what they need to go forth and set the world on fire.

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Bill St. John (RC `72) and Penny Dempsey St. John (RC `73), have announced the birth of their grandson, William Joseph St. John, July 20 to Brielle and Colin St. John.


Samuel Dosumu, Ph.D. (ACBC `90) was named chancellor at Univ. of New Mexico’s Valencia campus.

Christine Cappadona (RC `95) has been named director of curriculum and assessment for Hull Public Schools in Hull, Mass. Cappadona has worked in Hull for 22 years, starting as a fourthgrade teacher and serving as assistant principal before being promoted to principal of Jacobs Elementary School in 2015.

BlueCat, a Toronto, Canada-based network solutions organization, named David Duncan (ACBC `95) chief marketing officer.

Monica Coughlin, (RC `98) chief operating officer of Colorado Technology Association, was named an Outstanding Woman in Business by the Denver Business Journal. Coughlin sits on the Anderson College of Business and Computing executive advisory board.

Baptist Health South Florida has named Bill Ulbricht (ACBC `99) Chief Executive Officer of Baptist Hospital, one of South Florida’s largest hospitals with approximately 950 beds, more than 5,000 employees and 1,300 staff members.

Joshua Wilson (ACBC, `99) was appointed to the Board of Directors of Navidea Biopharmaceuticals, which is headquartered in Dublin, Ohio.


University of Puget Sound has named Kimberly Kvaal (ACBC `00) executive vice president and chief financial officer. Kvaal previously served as vice president for finance and administration at St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas.

J.P. Morgan Wealth Management has named Don Bausley (ACBC `01) a regional director overseeing the Mountain region based in Denver. He leads market directors and financial advisors working with customers in more than 170 Chase branches in Colorado, Utah and Idaho.

First Fed Bank, a subsidiary of First Northwest Bancorp, has named Christopher “Chris” Neros (ACBC `02) executive vice president and chief lending officer.


Paul Maszy (ACBC `03) joined BFLOW Solutions, Inc., a Fresno, Calif.-based billing software company, as chief technology officer.

Jamestown Community College in Jamestown, N.Y., welcomed Jonathan Blair (ACBC `04) as an instructor of information technology.

Michael Reynolds (ACBC `04) was named director for congressional and external relations for the National Park Service (NPS). Reynolds has worked for the NPS for 36 years and is a third-generation NPS employee.

Dr. Kim Capehart (ACBC `05) associate professor in the Department of General Dentistry in The Dental College of Georgia, has been appointed chair of the department.

Keith Zimmerman (ACBC `05) was appointed president of HCA Healthcare’s MidAmerica Division. Zimmerman will oversee seven hospitals and other care locations in the greater Kansas City, Mo. area.

Scott Alwin (RHCHP, `06) was named CEO of Hot Springs Health, a Thermopolis, Wyo., healthcare system that consists of one hospital, four family practice clinics and a surgical clinic.

Colorado Women’s Chamber of Commerce nominated Kristin Blessman (ACBC `07), president and general manager at PBS12 Colorado Public, as one of the 2022 Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Business.

The National Christian Foundation Wisconsin, a Wisconsin-based branch of the Christian stewardship and charitable giving organization, named Brent Eggers (ACBC `07) executive director.

Morris W. Price, Jr. (ACBC `05) has been named vice president of grants at The Colorado Trust. Price previously served as vice president and executive director of City Year Denver. The non-profit Colorado Trust supports community efforts to improve opportunities and equity for all Coloradans, particularly in the areas of health and wellness.

Price also served as district director for U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette(D-Denver). He has been named Professional Man of the Year by the Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce and serves on the board of the Rose Community Foundation.

Rutland Regional Medical Center has announced Kelly Watson (RHCHP `07, `19) has been named chief nursing officer of Rutland Regional Medical Center in Rutland, Vt. Watson previously was the CNO for UCHealth Highlands Ranch Hospital, a 93-bed hospital in Colorado.

Ally Haynes-Hamblen (ACBC `08) was appointed executive director for the Eisemann Center for Performing Arts in Richardson, Texas.

Chicago, Ill. Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot and the Department of Assets, Information, and Services (AIS) named Kurt Peterson (ACBC `08) chief information officer of the City of Chicago.

ACBC | Anderson College of Business and Computing CPS | College of Professional Studies LHC | Loretto Heights College RC | Regis College RHCHP | Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions


John Myers (ACBC `09) became chief operating officer for Mercy Hospital Springfield, located in Springfield, Mo.


Bobby Burns (RC `10) and Anne Reinking (RC `11), became engaged outside the St. John Francis Regis Chapel on Regis’ Northwest Denver campus in June, in the company of friends and family. They hope to be married on campus.

Gerald Drake III (ACBC `11, `13) has won a bronze medal from the book review website Readers’ Favorites. Drake, who writes under the name G. S. Gerry, won in the non-fiction-audiobook category for his work, Meth, Murder & Amazon

Kelly Purdy (ACBC `11) returned to Regis this spring to lead the University’s efforts to strengthen its philanthropic endeavors as Vice President of University Advancement.

Purdy brings to the position more than 20 years’ experience in fundraising and donor service. She joins us most recently from the national organization for Boys & Girls Clubs. Prior to that, she held vice president roles at The Denver Foundation and Global Greengrants Fund. She also serves on the board of the Colorado Planned Giving Roundtable and has served in volunteer roles with the Institute for Leaders in Development. Her commitment to service started as a Peace Corps volunteer in Ukraine where she lived for two years from 2002-2004. Since the war started, she has facilitated fundraising efforts with numerous organizations and helped evacuate friends.

A Colorado native, Purdy earned undergraduate degrees in political science and international affairs at the University of Colorado Boulder. Purdy earned a master’s in non-profit management at Regis in 2011.

Dan Rieber (ACBC `11), joined the board of directors of Eon, a Denver, Colo.-based healthtech company that uses data to improve patient outcomes. Rieber currently serves as chief financial officer of UCHealth in Aurora, Colo.

PaleoWest welcomed Brianne “Brie” Bustos (ACBC `12) as vice president of information technology. Bustos’ focus will be data security and streamlining PaleoWest’s internal processes to meet strategic goals.

Great Plains Health in North Platte, Neb., has named Summer Owen (ACBC `12) chief financial officer.

Sean Mulligan, (RC '10) and Liz Mulligan, (RC '11), welcomed Kit Amelia Mulligan on July 27, 2022.

Bradley Hamilton (RC `19) and Kallie Conroy were married on Friday, September 23 at Lionscrest Manor in Lyons, Colo. Groomsmen included Regis alumni Tyler Hamilton (RC `14), Matthew Holden (RHCHP `19), JJ Guadagno (RHCHP `20), Dominic Dumright (RC `19), Charlie Haimbaugh (RC `20) and Juan Panqueva (RC `20). Bridesmaids included alumni Brianna Holden (RC `19) and Hannah Murphy (RC `20). The bride and groom celebrated their honeymoon in the Bahamas and will live in Sterling, Colo. Mother of the groom Lisa Hamilton is assistant director for Porter-Billups Leadership Academy.

Joe Zappa (RC `15) started his first year as principal for Blevins Middle School in the Poudre School District in northern Colorado.

Eileen Michalczyk (RC `18) joined Frassati Catholic Academy in Thornton, Colo. as executive director.

Jody Brown, (RHCHP, `19) joined Campbell County Health in Gillette, Wyo. Brown brings 25 years’ experience to her new role serving walk-in and urgent care patients.


St. Mary Catholic School in Greeley, Colo. welcomed Stacey Chavez (RC `20) as principal.

Kili Hady (RC `20) is now principal at Christ the King Roman Catholic School, a pre-school through eighth-grade school in Denver, Colo.

Chloe Lamar (RC `21) joined Big Metal Additive, a Denver metal parts manufacturer, as project mgr.

Claudia Marie Noedel (RHCHP `22) joined the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit at Presbyterian St. Luke Medical Center in Denver.

Tim Spalla (RC `22) has been named a 2022 Tillman Scholar. The prestigious award, named for the late Pat Tillman, who left a successful NFL career to become an Army Ranger, will provide Spalla $5,000 a year as he pursues a doctorate in psychology at Saybrook University in Pasadena, Calif. The Denver resident plans to study transpersonal psychology.

Spalla, also a former Army Ranger, credits Regis, where he earned a master’s degree in psychology, with putting him on a path to success.

ACBC | Anderson College of Business and Computing CPS | College of Professional Studies LHC | Loretto Heights College RC | Regis College RHCHP | Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions

Donald Eugene Archer, who had recently retired after serving for 30 years as a professor in, and associate dean of, Regis’ Anderson College of Business and Computing, died in July at his home in Monument, Colo.

His notable tenure at Regis was merely the third of his successful careers.

Born in 1940, Archer spent much of the 1960s serving in the U. S. Navy, in Meridian, Miss. There, he kept Navy jets in the air as an aviation electrician. From the Navy, he went on to spend 27 years at US West/Bell Laboratories, while earning a bachelor’s degree and then a master’s degree while raising a family and working full-time.

In 2013, Archer was awarded honorary membership in the Alpha Sigma Nu Jesuit Honor Society.

Family members said Archer spent his last days doing what he loved most: fishing, pursuing adventure and being with family. He is survived by Karen, his wife of 54 years, daughter Dawn Archer and her partner, Jennifer Scullion; daughter Heather Hurst and her husband William and four grandchildren.

Dennis Gallagher, an activist, scholar, teacher, public servant, podcaster, staunch Catholic and rabble rouser whose passion for his hometown — Denver — and his alma mater — Regis University — seemed to be his life’s blood, died in April. He was 82.

Known for the controversial 1982 amendment to the Colorado Constitution that bore his name, Gallagher was for decades a fixture in Denver and Colorado politics and in Regis classrooms.

As an English major at Regis in the late 1950s, Gallagher developed a lifelong love of author James Joyce. “When he built his new house, he had the door made to look exactly like the door to James Joyce’s house in Dublin,” said longtime friend Phil Farley.

After graduating from Regis in 1961, Gallagher earned a master’s degree from The Catholic University of America, then taught Greek, Latin and speech at Regis.

Gallagher continued teaching part-time as he launched a political career that spanned four decades. In 1970, he was elected to the Colorado State House of Representatives; after two terms he was elected to the State Senate where he served 20 years. He later served two terms as a Denver city councilmember and three terms as Denver auditor.

Gallagher is survived by his son, Danny Gallagher and brother Tim Gallagher. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Meaghan Gallagher.

Mark J. Bruhn, Ph.D., Regis University professor of English, died in July.

Bruhn was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer with metastases to his brain in April after suffering a seizure in his Regis classroom. Knowing that his cancer was inoperable and incurable, he declined invasive treatments in order to spend the balance of his life, in his words: “at home and at work, autonomous, and at peace.”

In addition to his teaching, Bruhn was a world traveler, an accomplished hiker, scholar of literature and cognitive science and promoter of English Romantic poetry. His published writing includes a book on the English poet William Wordsworth, a coedited volume on cognition, literature, and history, and more than three dozen scholarly articles and reviews.

In the last 12 years, he volunteered more than 1,000 hours caring for babies at Children’s Hospital Colorado.

He is survived by his wife of 37 years, Kelley M. Young; daughter Dr. Maury Katherine Young Bruhn of Nashville; son Abiel Barrows Young Bruhn, and their families; two brothers, a sister, his mother and stepmother.

Rev. James B. Guyer, S.J., a priest for half a century, died July 11.

Guyer was born in Denver on July 21, 1938, to James W. and Mary Austin Guyer. He graduated from Regis in 1960 with a degree in history, philosophy, and economics. A year later he entered the Society of Jesus in Florissant, Mo. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1972.

Guyer earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and a master’s in modern European history and American history at Saint Louis University. He studied theology at SLU’s School of Divinity.

He spent two years, 1972-74, in Kamakura, Japan, studying Japanese language, history and culture, with emphasis on Japan’s interaction with Jesuit and Western influences.

He returned to Regis College in 1979 and soon became a professor of history, and served as director of academic advising, rector of the Jesuit community, province consultor and a pastoral minister.

He is survived by his sisters, Barbara Jean Hainley, Mary Linda Reske, Margaret Ann Fuss and Agnes Teresa Austin-Guyer and their families.



Thomas Wayne Phelan, RC ´48

Kathryn E. (Byers) Welsh, LHC ´48


Robert F. Fiori, RC `50

Peggy Lorraine (Marvel) Cronin, LHC ´53

Jean Anne Stromsoe, LHC ´53

Winifred (Linsenmaier) Hartman, LHC ´53

Martha Louise (Saavedra) Garland, LHC ´55

Lois M. Buckley, LHC ´55

Serafin L. Garcia, RC ´56

Marguerite M. (Waterman) Owens, LHC ´56

Paul Eugene Tauer, RC ´56

Henry C. Blum, ACBC ´59

Mary Kathryn (Kuempel) Malloy, LHC ´59


Dell, Martha E. (Golden) Dell, LHC ´60

William B. Houston, RC ´61

Thomas James Constantine, RC ´62

Dennis C. Dowd, ACBC ´63

Charles James Saavedra, ACBC ´63

William P. Wollenhaupt, ACBC ´64

Nikki Ann (Jinacio) Jones, LHC ´65

Stephen J. Forte, RC ´69


David L. Harris, RC ´73

Mark E. Digman, ACBC ´75

Robert H. Moulton, LHC ´76

Charles A. Moxcey, RC ´76

Leonard H. Von Dohlen, LHC ´79


John J. Sheehan, ACBC ´81

Sharan Irene (Wooster) Guinn, RHC ´82

David L. Roesch, ACBC ´83

Ellen Hodges Larson, ACBC ´84

Carol A. (Hall) West, ACBC ´87

Bertram W. Brown, ACBC ´88, ´91

Isabel O. (Vigil) Lopez, ACBC ´88 Elizabeth Owens Poole, ACBC ´89


Michael Dean Bretz, ACBC ´95


Geraldine (Butler) Grimes, ACBC ´01

Linda M. Caruso, SPA ´04

Beverly Ann Wheeler, SPA ´14

Conor Sean Doherty, RC ´17

FOREVER IN OUR HEARTS. ALWAYS ON OUR MINDS. ACBC | Anderson College of Business and Computing CPS | College of Professional Studies LHC | Loretto Heights College RC | Regis College RHCHP | Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions

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