THE ALUMNI ISSUE
Coping with the Elements Alumni Leave Their Mark on the World Saving the California Condor
Tim Godaire â€™12 researches climate change (see page 20).
LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT:
Shortly after midnight on March 24, 1989, the Exxon Valdez struck Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound, Alaska. According to the New York Times, 11 million gallons of crude oil were released from the ruptured hull of the Valdez. At the time, the spill was the worst in American history, damaging 1,300 miles of shoreline, causing severe economic hardship, and killing hundreds of thousands of birds and marine animals. I recently learned of how one woman responded to that disaster. Barbara Piel, who had substantial stock holdings in Exxon, was so appalled that she sold her stock and donated the proceeds to Unity College. At the time, the College was struggling financially. The gift was a life saver for Unity. I have no doubt that Unity’s environmental mission played prominently in her choice. Our commitment to sustainability science and transdisciplinary problem solving is simply the best way we know to approach environmental devastation. It’s also more than a coincidence that the first college in the United States to divest from investments in fossil fuels may have actually been saved by Barbara Piel’s decision to divest almost a quarter of a century earlier. There’s more to the story. Barbara was married to Michael Piel who owned Piel Farm in central Maine. Michael developed the Katahdin breed of sheep, a low maintenance breed of hair sheep that could graze powerlines — instead of spraying or mowing — and provide a good source of meat. The breed is remarkably successful especially in New England. Our farm on campus — developed with sustainable agriculture as a core concept — added five Katahdin sheep to its herd this fall. You can read more about our new farm later in this issue of Unity Magazine. In their lifetimes, Barbara and Michael Piel, committed, entrepreneurial and engaged, made a difference in the world and for Unity College. Part of their legacy is our alumni, working across the country and the world to make a difference.
The gift was a lifesaver for Unity.
Stephen Mulkey President, Unity College
| UNITY Summer 2009
America’s Environmental College SPRING 2014
OUR ALUMNI CHANGE THE WORLD Stories about extraordinary people engaged in important endeavors. PAGES 3-28
IN OUR ELEMENT 31
JUST ADD WATER
Photo: Kendall James ’17 enjoys an afternoon on campus.
FROM THE EDITOR
THE 91 PERCENT SOLUTION By Dr. Melik Peter Khoury Executive Vice President
Unity Magazine Volume 28, No. 1 Managing Editor Mark Tardif
Project Manager Kate Gilbert
Michael Rossi ’17 Stephanie Tardiff ’16
Skaar Design/Anneli Skaar
Debora Noone, Dot Quimby
What would the world look like today if 91 percent of our politicians believed that their job was to steward the Earth’s natural resources? What if 91 percent of business people put, as a first priority, the health of our planet? Imagine if 91 percent of our teachers, journalists and other influencers used their powers of persuasion in service to the blue marble we call home. According to alumni surveys, 91 percent of Unity College alumni work or volunteer their time doing just those things. You’ll be astounded when you go to the back of this magazine and read what some of our alumni are doing. They fight fires, protect forests, lobby Congress, work as part of teams tackling the causes and the consequences of global warming. They serve their country and they serve their planet. I came to Unity College to help support Dr. Stephen Mulkey’s vision and make a difference in the world. Like me, he saw Unity College as a nimble place where important change can happen fast. He brought a strong scientific background, a commitment to sustainability science as a framework for education and a growing concern about the crisis of global climate change. Based on my past experience with Unity, I was not so surprised to discover that the College was already heading that way, albeit using different words. Unity quickly adopted sustainability science as a framework for academic pursuits. Is it that Dr. Mulkey was that persuasive or was Unity already committed to this forward-thinking agenda? I’d say it was a little of both. Humankind is facing its most difficult environmental challenges. As you will see when you read these inspiring stories about our alumni, they are engaged, involved and committed to solutions. Although Melik Khoury is a relatively recent employee of Unity College, his relationship with the College goes back many years, to the mid-1990s. He made many trips to Unity as a soccer player and coach for another Maine-based institution. He watched as the College transformed and grew. Today he is both proud and grateful to be part of the Unity culture.
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Phillip Adams, Marc Bane ’73, Lisa Bates ’08, Kelli Bigelow, Brenda Bonneville, Seth Campbell, Angela Christiana, Emma Creaser, Randy Cross, Martha Dolben, Jackie Driscoll, Matt Dyer ’14, Tom Frezza ’08, Getty Images, Kate Gilbert, Tim Godaire ’12, Catherine Haase ’07, Kaz Hemmi ’92, RoeMechia John, Joya Kobu ’93, Julie Kozak ’09, Sarahbeth Lindquist, John McKeith, Andrea Miller ’13, National League of Cities, David P. Oliver, Rebecca Raymond, Dave Silverstone, Mark Tardif, Dan Wagner, Michael Wallace ’73 Kristinn Watson, Tyson Weiss ’03, Michael Wheeler, John Wood, Dave Yates ’99
Board of Trustees
Bruce Nickerson, chair; John Newlin, vice chair; Robert Kelley, treasurer; P. Andrew Hamilton, secretary; Stephen Mulkey, president; Michael Demko, Martha Dolben, Hallie Flint Gilman, Sarah Jeffords, Samantha Longo ’14; student rep; Jeff McCabe ‘00, Fred Moon, Benjamin Potter, faculty rep; Linda Povey, Sarah Ruef-Lindquist, Arlene Schaefer, Travis Wagner ‘83, Steven Whipple
We want to hear from you.
Letters to the editor, story ideas, or address changes may be sent to: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Mail: Letters, Unity Magazine 90 Quaker Hill Road Unity, Maine 04988 Web: www.unity.edu We reserve the right to edit submissions for length, clarity, and style. Submissions should be no longer than 250 words.
Unity Magazine is printed by Franklin Printing, Farmington, Maine, an FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified printer and printed on Rolland Enviro 100, a 100% post-consumer paper manufactured using biomass energy.
> Cover Photo: Tim Godaire ’12 on a climate research expedition to Denali National Park in Alaska. Photo contributed by Tim Godaire.
THE ALUMNI ISSUE
The Challenge of Sustainability Alumni change the world, flourish in a growing green economy By Mark Tardif According to writer Andy Goodman, “No one ever marched on Washington because of a pie chart.” Nor do prospective students who are inspired by Unity College’s value proposition sit down for an overly clinical analysis prior to applying. They are motivated by their instincts and inspired by Unity’s environmental focus. “Unity College students possess passion, drive and a determination to save the environment,” said Catherine Haase ’07, a wildlife major who is pursuing a Ph.D. in wildlife ecology at the University of Florida. “Most attend Unity because they want to spend their lives outside and enjoy the natural world— and they aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty. The jobs that many people would hate doing—hiking in the rain and sleeping under the stars—we love.” Strong feelings lead students to Unity College, where they are empowered to serve the natural world. Unity alumni make a difference in service to the environment, but they also frequently position themselves as leaders and innovators within the ever expanding green economy.
Catherine Haas ’07 tracking wolves in Yellowstone.
Robin Clark ’84 believes in a growing green economy and ever expanding need for environmental professionals. A wildlife management major, she was inspired to train for a broad, expansive environmental career at Unity College. That is precisely what she has pursued. On the front lines of resource management, she is a restoration ecologist with Whidbey Watershed Stewards in Washington, a short distance from Seattle. The broad education and hands-on learning opportunities she obtained at Unity College have paid dividends every day since receiving her degree. “Training in biology set me up for the work I am doing in the wildlife field,” Clark noted. “I also worked with youth, and some of that I attribute to recreational opportunities that I pursued at Unity.” The quickening pace of global climate change will continue to push out the current boundaries of the green economy, and Unity College alumni will be the gate keepers of that expansion.
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THE ALUMNI ISSUE CAMPUS
Unity Alumni Leave Their Mark on the World By Nicole Collins ’00
“The mind, once stretched by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions.” Ralph Waldo Emerson exemplifies how the human experience allows us the opportunity to adapt to an evolving paradigm. It’s fair to suggest that international travel and service experiences impact the human the same way as Emerson’s “new idea.” Unity College may be America’s Environmental College, but the impacts its graduates make are worldwide. Alumni are positively changing the world while simultaneously being changed in a way not possible without leaving comfort and time zones behind. “Traveling abroad, experiencing new cultures, and constantly being pushed out of your comfort zone on a daily basis, undeniably causes a change within you, especially when it is undeveloped countries that you are traveling to. Even if you think you are aware of poverty, environmental degradation, until you see it up close and personal for the first time, you don’t fully comprehend its magnitude, and it will impact you,” says Andrea Miller ’13 research assistant for the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. Andrea works for the Agua Salud Project founded by the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. “This is a comprehensive study seeking to understand and quantify the ecological, social, and economic services that are provided to us by tropical forests within the Panama Canal Watershed.” explains Miller. “By better understanding the services that are provided by tropical rain forests in the Panama Canal watershed, we are helping to ensure that the canal continues to function for decades to come.” Julie Kozak ’09 recently finished a term with the Peace Corps. “I taught youth groups in my community a nationwide environmental curriculum developed by Peace Corps Dominican Republic. I also installed bio-sand water filters into 36 homes throughout the community. Unity provided me with the knowledge of natural history and environmental issues that served me well as an environmental youth group leader,” says Kozak. Both Miller and Kozak studied abroad as undergraduates and both noted that these previous international travel experiences better prepared them for postgraduate experiences abroad. “If I had gone into Peace Corps service without previous experience abroad, I can’t be certain I would’ve been as effective as a volunteer,” says Kozak. Likewise Miller was first introduced to the importance of tropical rain forests while studying as an undergraduate at the Tiputini Research Station in the Amazon rain forest and learning about human impact in one of the world’s most biodiverse areas. The best way to make change is from within. By understanding the issues and impacts on culture and commerce, alumni are becoming environmental leaders on an international scale.
Julie ’09 (left) and Andrea Miller ’13 on the job in the Dominican UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 4 | Kozak Republic and Panama Canal.
Sara Trunzo ’08 in the hoop house on campus. To delve into the range of careers pursued by Unity College alumni is to dive headlong into a rising ocean. They are to be found in the halls of power on Capitol Hill; taking the vital signs of a tranquilized bear; or unveiling plans for the installation of a grid of solar power reflectors at the edge of a desert town cracked by rising temperatures and trickling streams. Not all alums head into the forest. Felix Owen ’07 turned his ecology degree into a career as an environmental health and safety inspector. He lives and works in the greater Chicago, Illinois, area. The single most valuable skill he gained from his education at Unity College, he says, was an ability to “think outside the box.” Often, Owen finds himself educating groups on ways to properly dispose of oil and other hazardous wastes. Not everyone is concerned with the environment, but Owen is flexible enough to create pathways for success. It is this ability to take the pulse of a challenge and find workable solutions—working effectively with individuals and groups who do not see themselves as personally invested in any type of positive environmental outcome—that he credits Unity with nurturing. “Writing and communications is very important in my work,” Owen said. “I find alternative ways of helping people to deal with environmental issues. Unity developed my creativity.” That wellspring of thinking,
THE ALUMNI ISSUE communication and problem solving skills is allowing Owen to achieve positive outcomes within the epicenter of the growing green economy. While a student at Unity, Stephenie MacLagan ’07, environmental policy, was involved in a dizzying array of academic, student life and experiential learning projects. She has been referred to as a “born activist,” so it is not surprising that her career progressed quickly. An environmental specialist III – shoreland zoning coordinator for Eastern and Northern Maine for the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), MacLagan leveraged her five internship experiences while an undergraduate into a job after graduation with Powerhouse Dynamics of Blue Hill, Maine, where she worked as a market researcher on smallscale renewable energy and energy efficient technologies. By the time she graduated, she had an intimate understanding of non-profit networks, and understood the difference between advocacy and activism.
‘I find alternative ways of helping people to deal with environmental issues. Unity developed my creativity.’ MacLagan is the embodiment of what “hands-on” learning is all about. From her first year at Unity, MacLagan took every opportunity to discover and advance her career. She landed two seasonal job offers through the annual Unity College Environmental Career Fair, eventually working as a field biologist for Florida Power and Light, a major dam operator in Maine that is required to monitor fish passage. MacLagan is where she wants to be in her professional life thanks to what she calls the “blurring” of disciplines that happens at Unity. Her message is that life as a Unity undergraduate can be like drinking from a fire hose. “Work study jobs, internships for credit and not for credit, and other volunteer and extra-curricular experiences provided and introduced many skills that I wouldn’t have gained simply from classes,” MacLagan said. “Unity College faculty and class curriculums were very accommodating to blurring those lines [between disciplines.] Showing prospective employers that these skills can be applied in a work place, not just an academic setting, increases changes for employment.” When seeking examples of the creativity, intelligence, drive and perseverance so common to Unity graduates, one might easily locate Sara Trunzo ’08 in the Sustainability Office. As Unity’s Food and Farm Projects Coordinator, Trunzo has not only led a multi-year period of growth related to the quantity and quality of produce grown on campus, but is deeply involved in area food security issues.
She has helped to transform operations at several Unity area food pantries, developing websites and educational programs to better serve clients. There are few projects too big or too small for Trunzo. Paintbrush in hand, she would gladly field an interview about the Unity Area Food Pantry’s website upgrade while continuing to paint one of its rooms in the old Unity Fire House on Depot Street. Such are the multi-tasking skills that embody this modern day Renaissance woman. Her advocacy for regional food security and hands-on knowledge of agricultural issues have made her a “go to” expert. The message is clear: Trunzo sees no limitations to what she may achieve or the possibilities before her, and credits the broad skills she gained as a Unity College undergraduate with her achievements. Unity alumni are also deeply connected to the College, in some cases directly supporting academics. In December, Mike and Rose Koutelis ’77 donated a wind turbine that Professor Mick Womersley will use to support hands-on learning in sustainability. “The main components were brought into the physics lab for investigation and some preliminary re-manufacture,” Womersley said. “It will be extensively used in the upcoming sustainable energy class and perhaps in future classes.” Delivering on some very big goals—including addressing rural food security, expanding the green economy, and doing their part in the mitigation of global climate change—are calling cards of Unity alumni. Stephanie MacLagan ’07 enjoys the natural resources that she helps to protect.
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THE ALUMNI ISSUE
WHEN DISASTER STRIKES > TRACKING THE DAMAGE David Yates ’99 lived the mayhem of BP’s oil spill By Zach Falcon When BP’s Deepwater Horizon offshore oil rig exploded on April 20, 2010, killing 11 workers and spewing oil into the Gulf of Mexico, Unity graduates were among those called to the scene. “The beginning was mayhem,” recalled David Yates ’99, who arrived in Louisiana shortly after the spill began and spent two years conducting bird surveys in the Gulf. “Oil was spilling out, and no one could predict how it was going to end.” Yates, a wildlife research biologist with Maine-based BioDiversity Research Institute (BRI), was tasked by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with assessing the survivability of oil-coated birds, including pelicans, egrets, skimmers, and rails. The focus of the study was on lightly oiled birds. “Not the ones you see on television,” Yates explained. At its height, the study tracked 400 birds daily across Texas to Florida, along with a control population of unaffected birds in South Carolina. Yates and his team worked 16- to 20-hour days, placing transmitters on birds and tracking their movements from airplanes and boats. When a mortality signal came, the team recovered the bird for evidence and necropsy. According to Yates, that’s when the real work began.
‘You use the data to write the story, to tell what happened. You owe it to the birds to give it your best shot.’
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“It’s one thing to find the birds, but it’s more important to work with the data at the end of the day,” Yates said. “You use the data to write the story, to tell what happened. You owe it to the birds to give it your best shot.” Looking back on his time in Louisiana, Yates traced a direct line from his Unity College experience to his career: “It gave a good foundation for the work I do now,” he said. He recalled honing his telemetry skills in the campus woodlot, and benefitting from the hands-on field experience of professors.
David Yates holds a pine martin.
THE ALUMNI ISSUE
Terrible things happen and we, as a nation and a world, look to extraordinary people to help pick up the pieces. It’s not uncommon for a Unity alumnus to be one of those people. Here are stories of two disasters and two of our own who were there on the spot to observe, to help, and to reflect.
“Listening to their stories made me think, ‘Wow, maybe I can do that someday.’” A Unity internship with BRI in 1999 set him on the path. Though Yates has contributed to natural resource damage assessments following other notable oil spills, including the 2003 Buzzard’s Bay spill that affected 100 miles of New England coastline, the BP spill stands out in his mind. “I came to know many of the local people over the years, and the effect of the spill in their own backyards was very emotional for them, and for me,” he said. “The future for the Gulf is so uncertain.” Still, he is hopeful that the effort to accurately assess the spill’s damage will eventually lead to meaningful habitat restoration. The goal, he says, “is to bring back something lost, if possible.”
> COPING WITH THE ELEMENTS Erin Schoppmeyer ’11 sees first-hand the damage a storm can wreak By Debora Noone “You don’t take bad news lying down,” Chris Schoppmeyer ’77 taught his daughter, Erin Schoppmeyer ’11. She took to heart her father’s words when her world crashed down around her. Maybe not her entire world, but Hurricane Sandy did crash down on the Statue of Liberty and nearby Ellis Island. Schoppmeyer was stationed as a seasonal employee and about to be promoted to a coveted permanent position in the U.S. Park Service. As her team rode the Liberty Landing Ferry to safety, they knew they were in for a rough storm and recovery. Schoppmeyer was sent home with no guarantee of returning to a job she loved—the hard-to-get permanent job that had been within her grasp. With her father’s words echoing in her head and determined to do all she could to get back to work and prove her worth, Schoppmeyer called a human resource employee with a mutual connection to Maine. “Put me to work. I’ll do anything—work part time, assist with clean-up.” Two weeks later, Schoppmeyer was called back to work storm damage clean-up detail. As she pulled artifacts off shelves on the second floor of the Ellis Island Immigration Museum, to gently dust off sand and grime, Schoppmeyer realized she benefitted from her Unity training. She put to use all the techniques that Tom Mullin, UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
THE ALUMNI ISSUE associate professor of parks and forest resources, had taught her in Interpretive Methods, a class that included museum and exhibit design.
“I love being outdoors, and I revel in the fact that I work for the park service in some of the most beautiful places in America.” Deconstructing each exhibit through the delicate work of cleaning artifacts, cataloging each with a location and number, and packing each away to preserve them at the Smithsonian Museum warehouse in the Washington, D.C., Metro area, was the reverse of building a new exhibit. “All skills I hope to use as we reconstruct new exhibits once clean-up is completed on Ellis Island.” The path to a park service career should have seemed evident for Erin. “Everyone thought I would follow in my dad’s footsteps.” Her father, a Unity College con law graduate, worked in law enforcement for the National and Oceanic Atmospheric Administration. But every summer, while her mom worked as a park ranger in Massachusetts, Schoppmeyer helped her with programs, explored the park, and went birding. “I love being outdoors, and I revel in the fact I work for the park service in some of the most beautiful places in America,” says Schoppmeyer. “When I accompanied my dad to an environmental conference in Shenandoah Park, he introduced me to a park law enforcement colleague.” As Schoppmeyer recalls his generosity in showing her around, she notes he didn’t try to change her mind. Instead he introduced her to people in her chosen field. As she toured the park, Schoppmeyer ran into a Unity alumna who told her to never give up her dreams. Battling Hurricane Sandy, government shutdowns, and an often just-out-of-reach dream to becoming permanent in the park service, Erin persevered by networking, using her resources to create new programs, temping in various positions, and ultimately sifting through sand and scrubbing off mold—a gritty job for those who won’t give up. She’s now permanent and back to taking the ferry from Battery Park to her beloved destination of standing in the crown and relating the statue’s history to visitors from near and far.
Erin Schoppmeyer at the Statue of Liberty. 8
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THE ALUMNI ISSUE
A Lesson in the Civil War Tom Frezza ’08 turns his passion into a career By Brenda Bonneville When we hear “bite the bullet,” it’s easy to envision the scene: a Civil War soldier on an operating table, a bullet in his mouth in order to take his mind off of the horrendous pain. As superintendent of the Pry House Field Hospital Museum at the National Museum of Civil War Medicine in Frederick, Maryland, Tom Frezza ’08 has the opportunity to let visitors know that Civil War soldiers were not biting down on any bullets. “When visitors come to tour the Pry House, I start by asking them to forget everything they think they know about how soldiers coped with pain during the Civil War,” said Frezza. “People assume that there were no medications at that time for pain, but I remind them that chloroform and ether were being used 30 years before the Civil War even began, and that surgeons had ample supply in 1861. Given that a bullet is about the size of a human’s windpipe, biting down on one with the risk of it being swallowed would not have been a prudent method of distraction. “The bottom line is that Civil War medicine is not as bad as Hollywood makes it out to be,” said Frezza. The Pry House is part of the National Park Service and during the Civil War served as headquarters for both Union Commander General George B. McClellan as well as Medical Director Dr. Jonathan Letterman. Located on the site of the Battle of Antietam, the bloodiest one-day battle in American history, the Pry House is considered the birthplace of military and emergency medicine. On September 17, 1862, 23,000 soldiers were killed, wounded or missing after 12 hours of savage combat. This battle ended the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia’s first invasion into the north, which led to the issuance of Abraham Lincoln’s preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.
Tom Frezza in Civil War era attire. UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
THE ALUMNI ISSUE
Frezza has a long-standing interest in history and has been able to parlay that interest into a career. He considers running the Pry House as more of an historical adventure than a job and spends time researching facts and timelines, coordinating displays of 150-yearold medical artifacts, and educating the public on what medicine really looked like during the Civil War. He also gets to surprise visitors with medical facts such as the fact that amputation techniques used by doctors today are largely the same as those used over 150 years ago.
‘The bottom line is that Civil War medicine is not as bad as Hollywood makes it out to be.’ “I am fortunate that my interest in history, medicine, and the Civil War have paralleled with my career path, and that I can share what I am passionate about with others,” said Frezza. “My job involves museum tours and sign interpretation, setting up museum logistics and operations, and curating objects for display that give a tangible sense of our connection to the past. For me, the best part is knowing that Pry House visitors care about making those historical connections as much as I do.” Exhibits in the Pry House include a recreation of an operating theater, objects relating to the care of the wounded, the history of the Pry House and the family, and information on the revolutionary system of evacuation of the wounded created by Dr. Letterman during the Civil War which is still being used by the military today. Frezza credits his interest in interpretation and turning that passion into a career to the classes he took at Unity College. “When people ask where I got my bachelor’s degree, I am proud to say ‘Unity College,’” said Frezza. “My major was parks and recreation/ecotourism, and the courses taught by Professor Tom Mullin not only inspired me, but ultimately lead me to my career with the National Park Service.” 10
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Tools of the Trade: each day is an opportunity for Frezza to share his passion for Civil War history.
THE ALUMNI ISSUE
Confronting Bears and Fears Lisa Bates ’08 overcomes obstacles by working smarter By Debora Noone Working with bears out in the wilderness is strenuous, says Lisa Bates ’08, but it’s also about the emotion and the instincts you take into the field. At a sun-soaked picnic table, Bates’ face shines as bright as the day while she speaks about her latest project—the Unity College Black Bear Study. A woman of slight stature and gentle yet passionate manner, it’s hard to envision Bates wrestling bears in the wilds of Maine. “I’ve learned lots of little-people techniques. And learned to overcome fears.” Working with men much bigger and stronger, she’s had to figure out methods to do the same job
in a different way. “And, along the way I’ve managed to teach the guys on the crew a little about working smarter.” Her eyes light up. Bates’ job as a wildlife technician on the state of Maine’s bear crew gives her plenty of opportunity to learn from her mistakes, figure out ways to work smarter, not harder, and overcome obstacles. “Don’t be afraid to make a mistake. Have some gusto.” Bates says these words from her supervisor at the Maine Department of Inland Fish and Wildlife (IF&W), Randy Cross, are indeed words she lives by. “You can’t help but face obstacles when you’re in the middle
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Lisa Bates and colleagues emerge from the woods while tracking a bear.
THE ALUMNI ISSUE of the northern Maine wilderness in sub-zero weather, rolling around in the snow face-to-face with a bear.” Bates has learned all the tricks. At the same time, because of her stature, Bates ends up with jobs the men have a harder time performing—like crawling into an s-shaped tunnel to get to the bear den. “Fighting the fears of small places can at times be more fearsome than the bear.” That’s where some of the emotion comes in. Every one of the crew members has had to face fears and overcome them. Cross not only supervises, but coaches and mentors each member to keep the team together and working at optimal levels in the field—endlessly training to overcome those fears and get the job done. “Facing down a mother bear with only a hypodermic needle, a flash light, and Randy’s voice in my earpiece isn’t easy for a claustrophobic.” Bates needs to get close enough in a constricted space to sedate the bear without getting hurt. With so much practice the task becomes second nature, and Cross’s words—shine the light directly in her eyes and position the syringe pole slow and steady—she’s learned to work on instinct. Bates’ experiences as part of the well-oiled Maine state bear crew and coordinator of the dozen Unity College black bear study teams, as well as her training and education, gave her the tools she needed in an emergency situation this past summer. While tracking a bear wearing a VHF collar, which must be located manually with ground or aerial telemetry, the twopassenger helicopter she rode in crashed in a heavily wooded area in a town near Unity.
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Bates (2nd from left) and colleagues from a bear study take a break to enjoy a well-deserved meal.
‘You can’t help but face obstacles when you’re in the middle of the northern Maine wilderness in sub-zero weather, rolling around in the snow face-to-face with a bear.’
THE ALUMNI ISSUE
Taking Lessons from the Field Back to Unity College At the end of the 2012 summer, Lisa Bates became part of the Unity College team strategizing to organize a comprehensive black bear study. The Unity study is a collaborative project with the state of Maine, led by George Matula, associate professor of wildlife biology, who consulted with Randy Cross of the Maine Department of Inland Fish and Wildlife (IF&W). In the greater circle of connections, Matula redesigned and led the original monitoring project of the IF&W 30 years ago, at the time Cross joined the IF&W bear crew. Bates began her work on the state bear study as a Unity intern in 2006 under Cross. Since graduation, she continues as a six-month annual seasonal team member, again under Cross. Because of her experience in the field, Matula selected Bates as the assistant project coordinator to spearhead the field work and help organize the student / faculty teams. Bates’ state of Maine experience working with a set of individuals striving for a common goal makes her a valuable asset for the Unity project. Her passion for bears and the outdoors shows through to the students in everything she does. “She’s a role model for those
She credits her repetitive training, both at Unity College and in her career, using the strategy of repeat scenarios—or pictures in your head—that normalize something that is not normal. According to Mick Womersley, professor of human ecology and faculty advisor for the Unity College search and rescue team “In general, we always use drill in emergency management systems so that training kicks in, and fear and shock are overcome more easily.” When Bates trained for the state, her supervisor used the example of envisioning tackling yearling bears to dispel the fear and ensure her reaction became instinctual to any scenario that might arise while subduing a yearling. Training to remain calm in stressful situations gave Bates the ability to go through the stages of normalizing the helicopter accident. “First you face your fear by grounding yourself,” Bates says. “Once you’ve calmed down, you orient yourself to the situation and get the job done.” In this case, Bates had to understand where she was— dangling in a seat in a helicopter that was turned on its side— and remember she was traveling with a pilot. “When you’ve been unconscious, it’s tough to acclimate yourself to a situation and then force yourself to stay on an even keel to do what needs to be done,” says Bates. In the end, Bates was able to get out of the helicopter, drag the severely injured pilot to safety after seeing leaking fuel, and use her GPS to get her to the road to flag down help. With a smashed cell phone, her options were few. Because she was trained to always know where she was in relation to landmarks,
of us aspiring to make a difference in the wildlife field,” says Student Team Leader Jonah Gula ’15. The state had three bear study areas prior to the inception of Unity’s project. Now the College study assists the state by adding data from a fourth Maine bear study area. Although not a partner with the state, Unity has adopted the state’s protocols and field techniques—a win-win for project collaborators. “Involvement in the bear study is rigorous,” says Bates. “Students are required to commit the extra time, on top of their compulsory course work.” The skills needed to staff each team and the knowledge gained is wide-ranging, making this project ideal for attracting students and faculty from a variety of disciplines Each project element utilizes distinct skills and knowledge to drive the research techniques. Bates says, “Working within teams and across teams demonstrates the true meaning of the transdiciplinary education model, the hallmark of the College’s approach to collaborative ecological problem-solving.” Students learn community relations, GIS skills, trapping techniques, DNA analysis, grant writing and more. Bates assists in managing each team’s work and coordinating overall communication between teams. With so many moving parts, the team leaders and advisors meet biweekly to communicate successes and opportunities, assess next steps, and help each other by offering assistance from their own disciplines.
her Unity class training and her work experience allowed her to clearly visualize the map of the area where they had been following the bear, and head in the right direction toward a road she knew was close-by. “Lisa’s prior training in lots of different areas we cover at the College, but especially first aid and land navigation, kicked in and helped her solve her emergency problem,” says Womersley. “Flagging the route was her best decision—it’s easy to walk in circles when your head is fried by shock!” Paraphrasing the John Mayer song, “Bigger Than My Body,” Bates says “I’m stronger than my body gives me credit for.” She’s had to be one step ahead of her body, and not depend on her strength, instead using her knowledge, experience, intellect—and yes, instinct—to conquer the situations she encounters.
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The Entrepeneurial Spirit > DOODLING CURVES INTO GARDEN FISH Tyson Weiss ’03 had an idea that he’s turned into a thriving business
Stories by Debora Noone Who knew doodling curves as a teen and a pottery class assignment at Unity would lead to a career? Unity College professor of pottery, Squidge Davis, asked each student to keep a notebook of ideas. Tyson Weiss ’03 framed his ideas by playing on his high school curves doodle theme. The ideas percolated for years, while the notebook languished in a drawer. After 10 years of thinking about curves, Weiss started a landscape design business. Being self-employed was all he knew. “Growing up, when I wanted something, my parents pointed me toward the lawn mower and said earn it.” As the economy changed, landscaping was less viable. But Weiss’ need for physical work and creativity remained a prime motivator to finding the right fit. One day, stepping out his front door, the fish-in-a-garden concept emerged from the many years of contemplating curves. He imagined schools of sculptured fish undulating through the garden. “Would I buy that? How much would I pay? Is it being done? Those were the questions I had to answer,” says Weiss. “Business isn’t about being impulsive or emotional. It’s research and planning and bringing your idea to a place where it mirrors the vision in your head. If that means making a bazillion fish to get it right, that’s what you have to do.” As Weiss developed the concept into a sound business plan, he found himself in the right place at the right time. Invited to show his product at the Botanical Gardens in Boothbay in 2008, he was given staging at the entrance of the exhibit. The feedback from art lovers and store owners showed immediately—and in the form of checks to buy his product. “You can give artists compliments all day long, but when they buy your work it gives the artist permission for full-speed ahead.” Weiss still operates out of his home. He has built the business up to enable him to sell product at major garden shows across the
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country. And he continues to mentor his employees to go out and fulfill their own dreams. His advice to entrepreneurs: Trust your instincts and ideas, research, take risks, seek help from those with more expertise, know your demographics, seek consumers outside your local area and go to that customer. Above all, make it easy for the customer to procure your product. “Building a business is more than making money. It’s contributing to the community by treating workers decently,” says Weiss. “Capitalism and entrepreneurship aren’t dirty words, but entities that should be part of the social change. I love empowering employees, friends, and anyone else I meet into upward mobility.” “Big ideas:” Tyson Weiss at an aquarium.
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In every walk of life, our Unity alumni change the world. Two alumni, Richard Saltzberg ’72 and Tyson Weiss ’03, leave their imprint by building businesses around a need and meeting that need using creativity, doggedness, and old-fashioned hard work. Both Saltzberg and Weiss are energized by challenging themselves to solve a problem, and striving for continuous improvement and outstanding customer service——all hallmark characteristics of an entrepreneur.
> GO WITH YOUR GUT AND TAKE A RISK Richard Saltzberg ’72 brings an adventuresome spirit to business enterprise Growing up in the family printing business, starting the Unity College newspaper—the communication vehicle for the town—and postponing college graduation to return home and sell the business after his father died, are layered experiences that brought Saltzberg to a realization. He wanted to start his own business. “At 29, involved with so many startups, it was time. I didn’t know any better,” says Saltzberg. “Part of being an entrepreneur is to go with your gut—not listen to naysayers.” His deep chuckle tells the story. In starting a business, innocence may be key. “Be willing to try new things. Take a risk. Figure things out.” He watched his father figure things out from the beginning— his father bought his own business the day of Richard’s birth. Saltzberg and the campus newspaper volunteer staff figured things out too. During Unity’s early days, the newspaper team, with the blessing of founding board members Bert Clifford, George Murdock and Ken Cianchette, and faculty like Dot Quimby, George Fowler, and Margaret Messer, trailblazed a path that brought the College and the town together. Saltzberg credits his will to succeed on growing up in a family business, working with the Rockland Courier Gazette during his college days to understand a different perspective on product and business management, and the pioneering spirit he learned while attending Unity. “Unity gave me the tools, support, and guts to go out on my own,” says Saltzberg. “My love for printing morphed into a passion for newspapers. Starting a new business combined my interest in design and the news.” Talking with Richard, his big city charm, Massachusetts accent, and spirited grin display all he takes into everything he does, including choosing where to situate his new business— Boston, of course. Where else for a man whose passion is the Sox—as in Red—and the vibrant activity along the waterfront of the Charles River? “It’s expensive to build a business here,”
Richard Saltzberg (right) visits with Rev. George Fowler and Dot Quimby.
says Saltzberg. “But with no competitors, we offered up close and personal service at a better price.” He rented an old building from MIT. As bad luck would have it, the blizzard of 1976 piled up the snow and the roof collapsed. There was good reason to quit. Adversity breeds creativity and determination and sheer chutzpah. Saltzberg, with his partner, surged ahead. They managed roof contractors, and drilled 150 feet through the floor, installing structural pilings to support 100-foot platforms for their 80ton newspaper presses. All to keep vibrations and sinking soil from the Charles River from affecting the work of their presses. Then, during repairs, his partner was found on the floor near death from lack of ventilation. Saltzberg used his wit and connections, managing to open the business only months later than expected. They made sure they were ready, announced the opening with a Sunday jazz brunch and trio, and ran the presses. “Get a good education. Surround yourself with talented people and believe in your vision. Finish what you start,” says Saltzberg. “Be part of the solution, form partnerships, and use your business to call attention to community causes to show the community your business cares.” Above all, love what you do. After a five-year hiatus enjoying semi-retirement—filled with traveling, consulting and volunteering—he and his wife think about starting another enterprise. “I still miss the adrenaline rush of the 24/7 newspaper and media business. Time to start a new adventure.” UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
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The Honor Goes Both Ways Unity recognizes 21 extraordinary women Honorary degrees are usually awarded for three reasons: to acknowledge a great discovery, to bring a celebrity to campus, to thank a donor. In the spring of 2009, Unity College found a fourth reason. That is the year Unity awarded 21 honorary bachelor of arts degrees to a group of extremely committed women from rural Africa who might never in their lives have the opportunity to visit Unity but who will always hold the College in their hearts. Back story: Imagine Uganda, a country of great natural beauty, lush forests, good soil and extreme poverty. It is still recovering, many years later, from the terrible reign of despot Idi Amin. Plus, the continuing large-scale civil unrest and conflict with neighboring countries has taken its toll. What little wealth there is can be found concentrated in its limited urban areas. This does not help the 80 percent of the population living in the country’s rural areas, many of whom are engaged in subsistence farming. In 2006, African Rural University was founded to serve women in rural Uganda. According to the University’s web site, “ARU is focused on providing women with the necessary knowledge, skills and experience to be effective rural development specialists and change agents … ARU graduates will be able to help people improve their lives and transform their communities.” Key was the rural focus of the University. In a case study of the University, Patricia Seybold writes, “Many universities in third-world countries are located in urban areas and prepare their students for jobs in urban areas. ARU’s founders wanted to create an institution of higher learning that would educate people who want to devote their careers to ‘bottom up,’ integrated rural development. ARU graduates would work — not in the cities, but in remote villages — to promote sustainable development in rural areas of Uganda and the rest of Africa. ARU education is contextualized in rural communities. One of its goals is to enable national and international experts to listen to, and learn from, rural people in their own communities.” The 2006 entering class was a group of engaged, dedicated and brave women. Of the 29 who started, 21 completed their studies three years later. Unfortunately for them, African Rural University, still in its start-up phase, did not have the authority to grant degrees. These women had no credentials to show for their years of hard work. 16
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That’s where Unity College stepped it. Unity College Trustee Martha Dolben, who is involved in African Rural University, approached the College to see if it would award honorary degrees to these women. In this magazine, where we celebrate Unity College alumni, it is fitting to let two of these remarkable women tell their stories. Resty Namubiru, an honorary alumna, teaches a group of men in a local village in Uganda.
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> FINDING A FUTURE
> FINDING JOY AND
By Charlotte Mbaine
By Agnes Akello
I am the oldest of a family of six. After my father’s passing, when I was in my third year of secondary school, I had to act as the family head. Because my father was a civil servant, we were entitled to some support for three years which we used for schooling for me and a few of my siblings. Unfortunately, it was not enough for all of us and some siblings had to drop out of school. I could not let this discourage me. I had to study and see that my siblings could, too. Things were a little tight but I managed to finish secondary school in 2003.
I was born in the Teso region in 1984 in a village called Amilimil, found in Kuju Sub County, Amuria district. I attended primary school in Amuria and afterwards joined Amuria Secondary School where I finished my Ordinary Level of education and later joined Soroti Secondary School for my Advanced Level of education. After that I was in an ambiguous state of whether I would continue my education. Then came the news that I could join African Rural University (ARU) which gave me great joy and happiness. I joined ARU in 2006 and went through competitive and enriching training and a two-year internship in the Parish of Ruteete. This helped me to gain more experience, carrying out research and at the same time testing solutions that enable the communities to take development into their own hands. Growing up, I saw many people in my community suffering. I always wanted to work with the people and make changes in my community. I wanted to be an empowered woman leader who influences decisions at local levels, who fulfills my duties and who acts as a role model in all aspects of life in the home, village or society at large. I aspire to have a peaceful and wellbuilt family that acts as a learning center for the rest of the members of the community.
‘Without this education and support, I would either be dead by now or somewhere looking like an old ragged woman.’ After that I looked for a job and considered how to continue my education but mostly I sat at home. Things did not go right for me. I had a boyfriend. I thought I was in love. I ended up getting pregnant. That’s when that so-called boyfriend started neglecting me. In 2006, someone told me about African Rural University. I made up my mind to try out my luck again. This was the beginning of my new life and I decided to put my past behind. It was during my internship after three years of lecture room attendance that I started to become useful. I just saw luck and hope coming my way. There was shining of a new light in my life when Uganda’s Rural Development Training Program decided to employ me as an epicenter manager in different communities within Kibaale. Currently, I work in Kasambya as the epicenter manager. My major role in this community is to mobilize community members, helping people move from reacting to circumstances to creating their own circumstances. I try to be an inspiration, especially to the girl children and the women. My aspiration is that I will pursue a master’s degree in public health. And with time, have a family of my own, only this time better organized and planned. Without this education and support, I would either be dead by now or somewhere looking like an old ragged woman.
‘I aspire to have a peaceful and well-built family that acts as a learning center for the rest of the members of the community.’ The people who inspire me in life are Thomas Sankara (RIP), the former president of Burkina Faso, due to his continued persistence and creativity. The people of this country were mobilized and they worked for their own development. My heroine is Ellen Johnson, the President of Liberia, because she gives me hope that some day we shall have a woman leader in Uganda. She demonstrates to the rest of the world that women can do it, too. UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
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From Unity to Unified Beau Doherty ’78 helps change attitudes and change lives By Martha Nordstrom Hard to believe, but Robert “Beau” Doherty ’78 is not always Mr. Nice Guy. When he was a bouncer in a bar in Taunton, Mass., back in the ’70s, he was in the middle of a brawl and helped save the boss’s life after he’d been stabbed. Not long after the incident, when Beau came into the bar with some of his clients, regulars told him, in crude terms, to get out and take his pals with him. Back then, Beau’s clients were not welcome at the local bar. They weren’t welcome at other local establishments either. Beau tried to change that. “We had a good family name in Taunton at the time and it finally helped.” Today Beau’s clients are called athletes. They compete in a worldwide sports program called Special Olympics. And because of Unity graduate Beau Doherty, who is president of Special Olympics for the state of Connecticut, they are part of a half-million-person movement called Unified Sports, an inclusive sports program that brings an equal number of athletes and partners (individuals without intellectual disability) on teams for training and competition. It started for Beau when he was a junior at Unity. He was offered two very different summer jobs: one working for 18
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a fisheries biologist, one working at the Paul A. Dever State School in Taunton. “I arrived at the school and I had all these people hugging me,” he said. “They were going to give me all this money to start an outdoor recreation program.” He took it. In those days, there wasn’t much to do for recreation at Dever. Friday was the big dance night. But men had to dance with men and women with women. According to Beau, it was all very old-style, very institutionalized. “I was going to shake it up a little bit,” he said. After he graduated from Unity, Beau returned to Dever and began his life-long career working with people with intellectual disabilities. The school created a recreation position to take advantage of Beau’s knowledge of the outdoors and serve as Head Coach of Special Olympics. It was here that he started mixing college volunteers on teams of athletes. Within a few years, Special Olympics Massachusetts and the Department of Developmental Services did a deal to have Beau become the Training Director and oversee coaches training in Massachusetts. Almost at once, Beau again showed his not-Mr.-Nice-Guy side. He started by banning the huggers.
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‘I made them play by the rules...The parents were all yelling at me after the fifth disqualification. Everyone was mad at me.’ “In the early days, Special Olympics was just a feel-good field day.” Athletes would slow up at the finish line because of the huggers — well-meaning supporters — who were there to congratulate them. “I got them off the finish line.” If that wasn’t bad enough, Beau insisted that coaches coach. “We went to Worcester for an event. I made them play by the rules. I told them a month before the event that I would enforce the rule that you cannot impede another runner and if you did you were disqualified. The parents were all yelling at me after the fifth disqualification. Everyone was mad at me.” That’s when the coaches — up to then not much more than cheerleaders — realized they’d have to actually coach if they didn’t want to see their whole squad disqualified. “At lunch the coaches were coaching their athletes to stay within the lanes.” This caught the eye of Special Olympics founder Eunice Shriver. There were complaints about Beau’s and other Massachusetts staff ’s approach and it was up to Mrs. Shriver’s staff to adjudicate. According to Beau, on one side was the field day institutional faction. They wanted games without consequence or results. On the other side were Beau and about 60 percent of the staff around the world. It was Mrs. Shriver’s decision and she made it decisively. “I did not start this to be a field day,” she told everyone at a meeting in Vermont. And she meant it. According to Beau, a lot of people lost their jobs in the next two years. Special Olympics got serious. It was a couple of years later when Beau came up with a change he had wanted for years. This time Mrs. Shriver wasn’t so convinced. It came out of something he observed when he integrated non-disabled people on teams. “The nondisabled folks became closer and more social when they became participants instead of coaches.” In 1982, Beau met with Mrs. Shriver in Utah to ask permission to play integrated softball in Massachusetts. Why in the world, she asked him, would he do that. “I started this program to put our athletes in the limelight.” Beau stuck to his guns. “I told her that we, as an organization, will be outdated if we don’t change.” She let him try and provided a researcher from Harvard University to witness the first game. One year later in the recap meeting at her house in Virginia she told Beau, “You’re lucky you’re from Massachusetts.” In 1989, after years of research in six states, Mrs. Shriver
at an international meeting with Beau at her side, endorsed Unified Sports. Fast forward to January 2013. That’s when Arne Duncan, Secretary of Education, announced that the country must provide equal opportunity in sports to students with disabilities. He said, in part, “Playing sports at any level — club, intramural, or interscholastic — can be a key part of the school experience and have an immense and lasting impact on a student’s life” Since the DOE statement there are now over 20 Special Olympic Programs in the U.S. partnering with the Interscholastic Sports Program to do Unified Sports together. Luckily there already exists a great model for success: Unified Sports conceived and delivered by Unity College’s Beau Doherty and aligned with the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference for the past 22 years where high school athletes and partners receive letters like everyone else. According to Tim Shriver, Chairman of Special Olympics, “Beau has been the world’s pied piper for the Special Olympics Unified Sports movement. Before anyone else, he realized that unified sports could transform relationships on the sports field, in communities, in schools, in places of business in ways that nothing else could. Beau understood that when we create sports experiences that are about equals we unlock the most powerful dimensions of the Special Olympics experience: Transforming pity and exclusion into respect and unity.” Let’s hear it for Unity!
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Tracking Climate Change Tim Godaire ’12 joins ranks of elite climate change researchers By Mark Tardif At a time when some recent college graduates were pursuing internships in search of that elusive first job, Tim Godaire ’12, Environmental Analysis, was steeped in climate change research and contemplating his first expedition to Alaska. Godaire is a graduate research assistant in a master’s track program at the University of Maine’s prestigious Climate Change Institute. “My research has taken me on a six-week research expedition to the glaciers of Denali National Park with promises of a return trip next year and potential for an expedition to the glaciers of Patagonia,” Godaire said. During his first research expedition, Godaire was charged with setting up and maintaining the weather station. (See cover) “When my advisor asked me if I would like to join the expedition to Denali, I exclaimed ‘Of course!’” he said. Godaire’s advisor tasked him with becoming the weather station expert. This meant learning which meteorological parameters the research team wanted to measure, which sensors were needed, and which would be capable of working properly in the frozen, alpine conditions. “Once we decided on the sensors, I had to draw up schematics for the tower design and the distribution of the sensors on the tower,” Godaire explained. “Another problem I had to solve was writing the program for the datalogger that would tell the sensors when and what to measure, and how to store all of the data.” Godaire says that he was prepared to take on the task of becoming the weather station expert because of the education he received at Unity College. “Dr. Kevin Spigel’s surface and groundwater hydrology class was my first exposure to meteorological sensors,” Godaire said. “The class deployed a network of science-grade sensors including gauges to measure rainfall, stream level, and groundwater level. We then used the sensor data to characterize the local hydrology and water flow.” During his senior year, Godaire used Spigel’s network of temperature probes to statistically investigate the microclimate 20
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variability around campus. “Learning about sensors, installation, and data analysis prepared me for a successful deployment of the weather station in Alaska.”
‘I learned that Unity’s small size enabled professors to connect with students and provide unique opportunities to study the outdoors.’ “Being part of the scientific expedition to Denali National Park has been the most rewarding experience of my life, so far,” Godaire said. “Unity helped prepare me for such a trip. It gave me the necessary academic foundation in earth systems and climate science that was required for acceptance into graduate school, and for success as a graduate student.” A side note of interest is that some of the skills he gained from Unity’s campus culture, with many outdoor enthusiasts, came in handy in Alaska. “I learned outdoor adventure skills needed to survive on the glaciers in Alaska,” Godaire noted. “The Outdoor Adventure Center and the Outing Club helped me develop my survival, medical and leadership skills.” Godaire’s future is wide open. He is weighing a variety of options including specialization in climate research, spending time pursuing grant funded research at any number of universities, earning a terminal degree, or journeying into a private industry that is expanding under the umbrella of the green economy. The latter is fast eclipsing the traditional economy that is based on a post-World War II industrial model. Whatever his choices, he will credit much of his success on the education he received at Unity College. “What first attracted me
THE ALUMNI ISSUE to Unity College was the school’s focus on the environment,” Godaire said. “This is clearly evident in the unique majors it has that cannot be found elsewhere. The school’s holistic and interdisciplinary approach to answering and solving the problems of the 21st century is at the core of all academic learning on campus.” Choosing to follow an agricultural curricular focus in high school that deeply engaged his interest in the nexus of science, environmental issues, and nature, Godaire knew the power of hands-on education. When he learned of Unity’s hands-on approach to learning, the connection was immediate and powerful. “I was seeking a college where learning happens both in the classroom and outdoors,” Godaire said. “I
learned that Unity’s small size enabled professors to connect with students and provide unique opportunities to study the outdoors.” Many students like Godaire avail themselves of the ample opportunities that exist for students to either pursue their own undergraduate research, or assist with faculty research. The first time he visited campus, Godaire felt a special connection between students, faculty, and staff. For Godaire the College is as much about that palpable connection of like-minded individuals working to achieve the game goals as it is about buildings or location, though the campus is ideally located for both research and recreation. “The sense of community at Unity could not be found on any other campus,
and I was looking for this sense when moving away from home in Connecticut,” Godaire said. His day-to-day life as a graduate student validates his choice to attend Unity College. “The professors at Unity College made my academic experience so rewarding,” he enthused. “They provided me with numerous opportunities to expand my research interests and gave me the skills needed to pursue any career path that I chose. Professors are willing to give students the one-on-one attention needed to reach their potential. This makes excelling academically both possible and incredibly rewarding, personally and for the community.”
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Saving the California Condor Mike Wallace ’73 gives it all back for the birds
By Brenda Bonneville Dr. Mike Wallace ’73 has helped save the California condor from extinction. His innovative techniques and protocols of raising the baby birds have proven to be instrumental in the substantial increase in the population of a species that was labeled as “Extinct in the Wild” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List less than 25 years ago. From a very young age, Mike “Bird Kid” Wallace was fascinated with birds, starting first with pigeons and other “backyard variety” birds. His passion eventually developed into an interest in birds of prey. As a young teenager, Wallace was given the task of taking care of pigeons that were housed in a granary across the street from his house. His job was to feed them. He became fascinated with how he was able manipulate the pigeons and get them to do what he wanted with something as benign as stale bread. Fast-forward to Wallace’s freshman year at Unity College. He wanted to keep birds of prey and he was able establish relationships with a few local farmers who gave him permission to use some of their barns and outbuildings for housing his “pet” birds. “When I first arrived at Unity, I was pleasantly surprised by the support of the local community of what may have seemed 22
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a rather ‘strange’ hobby,” said Wallace. “At the time, not many other people I knew were all that interested in falconry, or the training and keeping birds of prey, but when I got to campus and quickly found the resources between the professors and the locals to help continue my passion, I knew I had found the right place.” After he graduated from Unity College, Wallace went on to earn a master’s in wildlife ecology and a double PhD in wildlife ecology and poultry science, all from the University of Wisconsin. There, he learned about the California condor. The condor, a highly intelligent and social bird, has the largest wingspan of any North American bird, the ability to soar up to 18,000 feet and fly at speeds of 85 miles per hour in a steep glide. They rely on their keen eyesight to find food, and when the flying conditions are good, sometimes travel up to 150 miles per day for a meal. Because they are vultures, condors primarily eat carrion, and the adaptation of their bald heads gives them the ability to reach into rotting carcasses to feed and then clean up easily. Another unique characteristic of the condor is its ability to change the skin color on its head and neck, indicating emotion and serving as a means of communication between individual birds. “California condors are not your ‘typical’ bird like a black duck, eagle or Canada goose. Think of the condor as a
THE ALUMNI ISSUE social carnivore, similar to a wolf or hyena, where the species hierarchical social structure,” said Wallace. “Each condor has a unique personality and a non-permanent status within his or her population that it is continually trying to improve. Higher status birds have better access to food territory and mates,” said Wallace.
‘We as humans were responsible for the near extinction of the California condor... We caused the problem, so we should fix it.’ But the condors were in serious trouble. The condor population was plummeting. In the 1980s, scientists knew that the primary contributing factors to the decrease in the condor population were characteristics natural to the species: condors have a late sexual maturity at about 7 to 8 years of age; a very low clutch size (only one young per nest, per season); and baby birds are cared for by parents for as long as 18 months. So at best, a successful pair of condor parents produces only one fledgling every two years. With an increase in public awareness on the plight of the condor, it became evident that there were other, more human-initiated factors that were contributing to the population decrease as well: poaching; lead poisoning from the birds eating animal carcasses shot with lead bullets (by far their most deadly mortality factor); DDT poisoning; electrocution and collisions with power lines; egg collecting; and habitat destruction. And so it was decided to initiate a captive breeding program. The idea of trying to recover the condor population by capturing all the birds and breeding them in captivity was at first met with some opposition, particularly by conservationists and Native American communities. The argument: Capturing all of the birds and taking away their freedom might change the habits of the species forever. Despite the controversy, in 1987 the last of the remaining California condors in existence at the time was captured and the 27 birds were distributed between the Los Angeles and San Diego zoos. Working with the United States Department of the Interior, the California Fishing Game Department and the Forest Service, the two zoos officially started the captive breeding program. The US Fish and Wildlife Service also formed a recovery team made up of scientists and condor experts to advise on condor management. Wallace was one of the first members and served as the team leader for many years. The priority was to increase the population as quickly as possible. Mother condors do not have the ability to differentiate their eggs and are in fact stimulated to lay another if the first
Dr. Mike Wallace works with a number of other birds, including this pictured Harpy Eagle. one is broken or goes missing. Managers began taking the first egg when the female wasn’t looking, inducing her to lay an other, a method is known as double clutching. In condors, the “mourning” or “recycling” period between the loss of one egg and laying the next is approximately 30 days, so the turnaround time for a female to lay a subsequent egg is relatively quick. On occasion, the managers would also take the second egg, often prompting the mother to produce yet a third, or triple clutch. Through this practice of multiple clutching, the female condors were consistently laying multiple eggs, which quickly translated to the reproduction of four to six chicks every two years, as compared to only one offspring over the same time period. Those results gave managers a significant jumpstart on population increase, and soon there was an abundance of eggs. With the growing inventory, managers turned to the parent condors for raising the chicks. As the success rate of this artificial incubation practice increased, soon there weren’t enough parents to raise the hatched babies. The challenge was how to raise the chicks so that the birds would not see the human trainers and imprint on them, thereby becoming dependent. The managers needed a way to teach and train the baby birds how to behave like condors in the wild. It was at this point that Wallace took his knowledge of an innovative technique that had been tried on other bird species—using puppets as surrogates—and proposed developing the same method with condors. Wallace already knew that hand puppets had been used with some success with peregrine falcons and was curious to see if the same technique could be used to raise the more social baby California condors. Wallace built his first bird puppet while auditing an art class UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
THE ALUMNI ISSUE at the University of Wisconsin. He made the puppet in the image of an Andean condor using latex and Plasticine, developed the process, and creating the mold as well as the prototype. This early model, with slight modification, is still being used today to raise baby condors. Wallace’s first test release group was 11 young Andean condors that he raised by using his Andean puppet as a surrogate. He shipped the birds to the Atacama Desert in northern Peru where he finished raising them and then released them into a condor habitat. This successful release was the first indication that managers would be able to work with the sociality of the species and still get what Wallace would describe as a “good bird,” or one that was able to be in the wild and survive within its group. Wallace conducted another test with Andean condors, this time in California. In 1988, thirteen Andean condor females were released producing protocols on which future California condor releases would be based. “It’s about teaching young birds how to behave in the wild, in essence how to be condors,” said Wallace. “When humans use puppets to raise baby chicks, we are basically serving as conduits to help the birds get from a creature that doesn’t know how to be itself to one that is able to secure his or her status in the hierarchy of the condor species.” As the number of captive bred condors grew, the need for their release grew as well. Looking to the success of the Andean condor release and with the approval from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, in 1992 the reintroduction of the California condor into the wild began. Today there are over 400 birds, and the species is reclassified with the more optimistic “Critically Endangered” allocation on the IUCN list. Wallace’s introduction of puppets as surrogate parents and the methods, techniques, protocols and procedures that he established have shown to be incredibly successful, certainly more so than he anticipated when he first began working with the problem of condor extinction 24
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nearly 35 years ago. “People often ask me, ‘Why have you been doing this for so long?’ I tell them that these birds are fascinating and are always doing something new, which keeps me interested and motivated to continue with helping species preservation.” “We as humans were responsible for the near extinction of the California condor,” said Wallace. “I feel we have a responsibility to see the recovery of the species to a sustainable level in the end. We caused the problem, so we should fix it.”
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Hands Across the Oceans Students ‘From Away’ found warmth and welcome at Unity College By Michele Leavitt
In the 1990s, a number of collegebound students from Japan chose to attend Unity. Some arrived here through the Sakae Institute for Study Abroad, and others found Unity on their own while looking for specialized environmental programs. Over the years, Professor Emeritus Dot Quimby has kept in touch with many of the students from Japan, one of whom is Kazuhiko “Kaz” Hemmi. Kaz earned an associate’s degree in business from Unity in 1992 and went on to earn a bachelor of science degree from Alfred University. After completing his education in America, Kaz settled in Tokyo, where he serves as vice president in the technology department at Citigroup, managing a business analysis and application development team. Kaz came to Unity because his parents wanted him to adapt to a local college life in America in a countryside location. His parents wanted him to experience being away from a Japanese population as much as possible. As he says, “It worked out.” He achieved fluency in English, accomplished his educational goals, and went on to become a successful business executive. Moreover, he had a memorable personal experience at Unity. “Perhaps because of the size of the school, people like Dot Quimby still remember me. It makes me feel a part of the Unity community.” He has connected with Dot and some of his old Unity friends via Facebook, and sees them whenever he gets a chance. “I made lifetime friends in Unity,” he says. Like many alumni, Kaz says that what set Unity apart from other colleges is that people at Unity, including facilities, cafeteria, and security employees, felt like one big family. His favorite
professors were Jim Reed, for his sense of humor, and Leonard Craig, for his ability to listen and give good advice. Kaz enjoys surfing as an antidote to his busy career. On weekends, he often goes to Shonan Beach, about 30 miles south of Tokyo, to surf with friends. “It’s a fun and really relaxing time for me to forget everything except catching a wave,” he says. “When the sky is clear, I can look at Mt. Fuji while waiting for the perfect wave.” In recent years, Kaz and his wife, Asako, and daughter, Maya, have taken family trips to Oahu with other families, where he and his buddies hit the beach early in the morning to surf. Joya Kobu was the first of the Japanese students to earn a four-year degree at Unity. He graduated with a bachelor of science in environmental policy in 1993. Joya chose Unity because it offered a specialization in natural resource sciences, and because of the Learning Resource Center, which supported him as he became fluent in both spoken and written English. Although Joya earned a bachelor of arts degree in business administration from Rikkyo University in Japan, and a master of science degree in zoology from the University of Otago in New Zealand, Unity is the institution that he feels most strongly about. “I always feel in my heart I am supported by hundreds of people who also sincerely love Unity,” he says. “The campus was small enough so everyone knew everyone else.” Joya recalls several of his professors fondly, including his academic advisor, Dr. David Purdy, whom the College recently honored in a well-attended memorial service and celebration. Of Dr. Purdy’s Natural Resource Policy class, Joya says “The course was one of the toughest ones, but Dr. Purdy encouraged me to acquire more knowledge on worldwide issues in exploiting natural
resources than I had ever done in Japan. He always met with me for extra sessions when I needed it.” Joya also recalls the strong leadership skills of Wilson Hess, who served as president of the College while Joya attended. Hess continued to be a reliable mentor for Joya even after graduation. Eventually settling back in his hometown in Japan to care for his mother, Joya is now involved in a small business centered on private real estate that includes forest management. He also maintains several rice paddies for his own scientific interests. While he would prefer to return full-time to his science profession, he says that his experience at Unity undoubtedly helped him to plan for land use issues in a way that respects nature. Fisheries courses with Dr. David W. Bridges and Dr. Dave Potter at Unity helped to make Joya the avid fisherman he is today. He uses traditional lures or hand-made hook sets, and often fishes for bigfin reef squid. “Fishing is my primary hobby,” he says. “I remember fondly that I used to catch brook trout a lot around Unity.” Unity hosted students from Japan throughout the 1990s, and into the 21st century. Although most of the students returned to Japan once they completed their studies, they are still vividly remembered by faculty, staff, and classmates. For librarian Lisa Nason, interacting with the students reinforced her interest in Japanese culture. A fan of sushi, samurai swords, and the Sano Ichiro book series set in medieval Japan, Lisa was especially close with Ryoko Kawakami, who graduated in 2010. “It was neat that we had people coming from so far away,” Lisa says. “We look forward to attracting more students from far away in our near future.”
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THE ALUMNI ISSUE
Going Green with a Degree in English Marc Bane ’73 turns a love of literature into a thriving career In the early 1970s, Unity College was still struggling to find its identity. A budding Forestry and Outdoor Recreation Program attracted nature lovers and outdoorsmen from small towns in New England who were probably inspired more by the enjoyment of the environment than its preservation. At the same time, a limited but competent liberal arts program attracted an eclectic group of students from the urban and suburban enclaves of New York and Boston who were interested in bringing some peace, order and perhaps even a bit of intellectual insight into their lives while escaping from the social stress or carnage of an unpopular and horrific war. Unity alumnus, Marc Bane ’73 clearly fell into this second category. At Unity, Marc discovered a particularly strong English Literature Department with a well-credentialed faculty that had, in Marc’s words, “chosen to forsake their ivory towers for a more simple and harmonious lifestyle in rural Maine.” Unity allowed Marc to both major and minor in English. He eventually graduated with more than 50 credits in this discipline. As a Unity College English major in 1973, Marc’s only concept of a “Green World” was the pastoral scenes in Shakespearean comedies where the laws of society succumbed to the laws of nature to restore natural order. Ironically, and quite by accident, Marc managed to leverage his English degree and appreciation for writing into an interesting and rewarding career in energy-cleantech marketing and communications. When Marc graduated in 1973, the humanities were the mainstay of college curricula, and the New York job market was flooded with liberal arts majors. Lacking a graduate degree for teaching, he had few career choices if he wanted to stay in his field. Publishing seemed to be a logical career path and Marc was lucky enough to land a job as a production assistant at Hearst magazines. About two years later he landed his first editorial position at a chemical industry trade magazine where he wrote business articles based on interviews with chemical industry purchasing executives. (“Not the most fascinating journalism,” admits Marc.) In a few years, Marc became the Senior Editor and was assigned the editorial page. “I finally had the chance to use my writing skills to share my opinions on something that interested me – the relationship between industry and the environment,” explains Marc. “The 1970s laid the cornerstone for the future of environmental policy in the U.S. and it was a great time to be writing opinion pieces on environmental regulation,” says Marc. “The Clean Water Act was passed in 1972 establishing regulations and penalties 26
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THE ALUMNI ISSUE
(Left) Bane at ThermoEnergy Corporation’s wastewater treatment systems manufacturing plant in Worcester, MA. (Right) Dot Quimby, Marc Bane, Lennie Freedenberg, Steve Silver, Bob Portner, and Michele and Steve Bajardi, at the 2013 Class of 1973 Breakfast reunion in Unity. for discharge of industrial wastewater. The horrors of leeching toxic wastes at Love Canal began hitting the headlines in 1976, and in the same year, the Resource Conservation & Recovery Act posed unprecedented fines and criminal penalties on the illegal dumping of hazardous wastes. All these laws culminated in the establishment of Superfund in 1980, a landmark piece of legislation that would shift the cost of environmental cleanup from the taxpayer to industry.” Although there was no shortage of topics to write about, Marc had to remember that the chemical industry was supporting his magazine. “My challenge was to advocate environmental responsibility with a balanced viewpoint that explained how reasonable regulation and compliance made good sense for everyone. What I lacked in industry knowledge, I made up for with a livelier writing style and catchy headlines that often drew from the literary metaphors and quotes I remembered from my literature classes. Much to my amusement, the editorial page became the most widely read column in the magazine.” Marc also became one of the first graduates of New York University’s Direct Marketing Program in the early ’90s. “Direct marketing copywriting is great training for any kind of persuasive writing exercise, even environmental advocacy,” says Marc. “You really have to get into your prospect’s head and systematically lay out an argument that steers the reader’s thinking in the desired direction.” Five years after founding an advertising and communications agency in New York, Marc decided to close the agency and climb the corporate marketing ladder. He eventually served in senior management positions at several companies in the energy industry. In 2005, Marc founded Bane Marketing & Communications, an independent marketing communications consultancy. One of his first clients was a company called GreenFuel Technologies. Greenfuel pioneered the early development of algae fuels that used CO2 emissions from power plants to accelerate growth, capture carbon, and produce a feedstock for biodiesel and ethanol. Although the company didn’t have the financial endurance to reach commercialization,
GreenFuel became the poster child for a new era in renewable energy, winning the prestigious “Platts Energy Emissions Project of the Year Award” and enjoying multiple TV spots on shows like the “The History Channel” and “Discovery Channel” as well as coverage in almost every major news and science magazine— including a cover story in “National Geographic.” Marc also began working with InEnTec Corporation, developers of the PEM®, a plasma arc gasification technology that rearranges molecules of municipal solid waste, or even toxic chemical waste, into molecules of syngas for the production of heat and electricity or valuable chemicals. InEnTec won the “Wall Street Journal Technology Innovation of the Year Award in Energy” in 2010 and was featured several times in segments on CNBC and CNN. “Cleantech is really the nexus of energy and chemistry,” says Marc, which makes this industry niche a great fit for his background and experience. Marc has since worked with a number of clients in the energy and cleantech space and now spends a major portion of his time promoting wastewater recycling at his client, ThermoEnergy Corp. ThermoEnergy was recently recognized with a “2013 IHS CERA Energy Pioneer Award” for its work in recycling water in the Power Generation and Unconventional Oil and Gas Industries. “Water is now the world’s toughest sustainability challenge,” says Marc, “and we are already seeing significant new innovation in this field.” Marc insists that great marketing communications is critical to the success of both new and established alternative energy and Cleantech companies. “The enthusiasm for sustainable energy, excellent environmental curricula at colleges and universities, and considerable government and private support have resulted in a proliferation of new companies trying to enter the market,” says Marc. “The road to success is littered with great ideas that get lost in the noise. If you plan to compete in this game, you’ve got to consistently and elegantly share your vision and differentiate your brand. I hope Unity students are taking full advantage of the Environmental Writing and Media Studies program. UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
THE ALUMNI ISSUE
A Unity College Star Hilari 7arnadore ’97 steps up to the plate to make a system work By Diane Murphy
In 2011, a fledgling program called the STAR Community Rating System was in trouble. The director was resigning and stakeholders were losing hope after a three-year development process. Who would be willing to take on this challenge? Hilari (Benson) Varnadore ’97, that’s who. She saw impending disaster as an opportunity to “take this huge project to the finish line.” Now the Executive Director of STAR Communities, Hilari made use of the experiences she had honed throughout her career in environmental nonprofits and government agencies. She secured funding and incorporated STAR Communities in the District of Columbia. Today, the Rating System and its associated programs help communities across the United States and Canada measure the impact of their local actions, achieving communityscale results that make a difference. How did Hilari get from Unity College to a position that allows her to work with municipal leaders at this broad level? The trajectory speaks volumes about her dedication and skills. After earning her degree in environmental policy at Unity, she went on to graduate school at Northern Arizona University. During Hilari’s time out West, she held positions with the Grand Canyon Trust and the Nature Conservancy; her research was focused on Growing Smarter Act implementation and community resilience in the ArizonaNew Mexico mountain ecoregion. A native of Maryland, Hilari was delighted to return when she 28
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was offered a job in her home town running a nonprofit called Community Commons. This led to a government post as Principal Planner for Frederick County and, ultimately, a position as the county’s first Sustainability Director. These formative experiences made her realize that she could be most effective by employing a systems thinking approach to environmental problems, coordinating across agencies and “breaking down silos.” Hilari modestly describes herself as a generalist, but she has the training to focus on specialized problems such as land use, Staff photo with Hilari Varnadore pictured left.
energy management, and water resouces planning. The STAR Community Rating System she currently administers is similar to LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). Both have developed sustainability standards under the guidance of the U.S. Green Building Council. Hilari notes that she wishes she could be at Unity College now because of all the improvements that have been made since she graduated. We hope that she’ll come for a visit soon so that we can show off our LEED certified buildings. It would certainly be useful to know how we measure up to a STAR rating.
CAMPUS NEWS IN OUR ELEMENT
Half Moon Gardens Donated to Unity Gift to spark research, innovation and entrepreneurship By Mark Tardif
Unity College has received a transformative gift marking a significant expansion that will enhance teaching, research, experiential learning and programs. Isabel McKay and Rick Thompson of Brooks have gifted Half Moon Gardens of Thorndike, a multifaceted greenhouse operation. The property, along with five years of financial support, is valued at over $1.2 million.
A Spark for Comprehensive Development According to Unity College President Stephen Mulkey, the facility will serve as a direct extension of the College’s 225 acre campus on Quaker Hill Road in Unity. The facility will provide the Unity College community with both educational and entrepreneurial opportunities. “Unity College aspires to achieve prominence as among the best environmental colleges in the nation with a focus on sustainability science that includes teaching, research and scholarship that frames its world-class reputation,” Mulkey said. “This gift is a significant step forward for this College
as it continues to progress in service to its strong environmental mission.” Senior Vice President of External Affairs Melik Khoury praised McKay and Thompson, and pointed to the close symmetry between their values and the direction of the College. “As part of our mission, Unity looks to address the challenges faced by rural agricultural enterprises in New England. These challenges include energy costs, compensation for agricultural workers, a challenging climate, and sparse population density. This facility will help us develop and model replicable solutions for these challenges, in addition to maintaining a marketplace presence to serve the community.” Khoury said that although the idea for the gift came almost a year ago, it took about nine months to craft it. “We all worked hard to ensure this gift accomplishes Izzy’s goals and is a strong asset for the College,” he said.
Serving the Next Generation of Successful Farmers According to McKay, the next generation of farmers needs an education beyond agriculture.
“Many young farmers do not understand that in addition to delivering their product to market, they also must be business managers and handle a host of market complexities,” McKay said. “It is important that they understand how to address the administrative, legal, and clerical aspects of their agricultural enterprises. I am confident that by choosing Unity College as the beneficiary of Half Moon Gardens, our young agricultural producers will be trained holistically, and learn from both the practical sense as well as from the business point of view.” “We are especially pleased that the owners of Half Moon Gardens recognized that Unity College has the ability to use the facility in order to create the kind of programs they envisioned for students and others in the community,” said Martha Nordstrom, Director of Development. “We are fortunate that the philanthropic interests of Half Moon Gardens align with Unity’s core values of respect, personal and institutional integrity, community engagement and environmental sustainability, and are excited to pursue this extraordinary opportunity.”
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IN OUR ELEMENT CAMPUS NEWS
New Residence Hall Planned for 2014 By Debora Noone
The good news—and challenge—more juniors and seniors at Unity chose to live on campus during the fall 2013 semester and our enrollment for first years and transfers went up by 25 students. The solution: time to build a new residence hall. According to Dan LaForge, director of facilities and public safety, plans are in fullswing for a new building that will house up to 70 students and two residential advisors (RAs), projected to open in the fall of 2014. The two story residence will sit backed up to the woodlot, south-facing toward the soccer field. With a salt-box type roof and solar panels, the building will maximize solar power production. The suite-style housing will allow five students to share a common space, a shower room, and a separate private bathroom. Suites and one RA suite will be positioned on each floor, with residence common areas on the first floor. The College anticipates larger enrollment numbers next year, so expanding residential options now ensures meeting future housing needs. Artist rendering of future residence hall.
Unity College Receives Ten Year Accreditation During the fall semester 2013, Unity College received news that highlights the quality of its academic experience. The New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) issued a 10 year accreditation for the College, the highest level of accreditation given by that organization. “This represents a strong endorsement by NEASC in Unity’s curriculum, program, structure, and future,” said Michael Evans, provost and vice president for academic affairs. “NEASC is clearly confident that we are on a positive path.” During his monthly Presidential town hall meeting with faculty and staff in November, President Stephen Mulkey described an exchange he had with a NEASC commissioner
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about the accreditation. The NEASC Commissioner effusively praised Unity College. “She began her remarks by saying that if she had a son or daughter, she would encourage him or her to take a look at Unity College,” President Mulkey said. Evans described the process as being very thorough. “It includes a detailed self-study, in which the College evaluates its plans, goals, and progress, looking at all facets of the curriculum and operations,” Evans explained. “Then a site-visit team comes to campus to talk with faculty, staff, and students; the team then drafts its own report. The association considers both reports carefully, talks with the President and other members of the administration, and issues its findings.”
CAMPUS NEWS IN OUR ELEMENT
Rabbits and Chickens and Sheep...Oh My! Experiential learning means livestock on campus By Brenda Bonneville Unity College is an environmental college with a solid, hands-on approach to learning. On any given day, students are either in the classroom or outside conducting experiments, doing research, gathering specimens, and improving their skills. During the recently completed fall 2013 semester, one of the most visible improvement projects was the newly renovated barn, home to a herd of college-owned livestock including San Clemente Island goats, Katahdin sheep, silver fox rabbits and Delaware chickens. The introduction of new animals to the barn on campus was a concentrated effort and an extension of Unity’s method of experiential learning utilized throughout the College’s entire curriculum, benefitting students across all majors. With the recent building of the College’s new barn came the natural progress to obtain campus livestock and hire a barn manager to oversee the animals. Megan Anderson ’09 clearly stood out as the right person for the job. Anderson graduated from Unity with a degree in ecology, and has her own farm in Unity where she raises dairy goats, rabbits, chickens, turkeys and hogs. The connection between being a Unity alumna and her extensive knowledge of animal and vegetable agriculture gained from maintaining her own enterprise makes Anderson’s appointment as the campus barn manager a perfect fit.
Students benefit from hands-on learning in the barn. Meg Anderson ’09 (pictured bottom right) shows a student how to listen for the heartbeat of a kid. UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
IN OUR ELEMENT CAMPUS NEWS
Comprehensive Laboratory Upgrades Improve Academic Experience By Brenda Bonneville & Michael Rossi ’17 Unity College has recently upgraded its facilities in order to provide better learning experiences for students. Some new renovations on campus include three new state-of-the-art labs for the chemistry, molecular biology and geology classes. Planning the labs included input from several faculty members who drew upon their experiences and expertise in creating spaces that are conducive to learning. “The chemistry lab was near the end of its useful lifecycle and needed to be upgraded,” said Dan LaForge, director of facilities and public safety at Unity College. Unity students are very enthusiastic about the new labs and see them as an integral part of their learning and research. “It is much easier for students to give each other feedback because we no longer feel cramped in a confined space,” said wildlife biology major Jazmyn Atteberry ’16 who also works in the chemistry lab. Some of the upgrades in the chemistry lab include new lab stations, new floors and ceilings, upgraded plumbing and gas lines, installation of cabinets, and a fresh coat of paint. In particular, Atteberry finds the installation of cabinets to be safer because now people will not trip over backpacks and other items left on the floor. “Before the renovations, the chemistry lab was full of useless materials which had not been used for many years and were just lying around,” Atteberry said. Others are benefitting from the changes in the classrooms as well. Several professors on campus believe that the upgrades are helpful improvements to enhance their teaching methods. Wilma Lombardi, a chemistry professor at Unity College finds it easier to make her demonstrations without worrying about visibility for the students. She also says that she is now able to illustrate concepts and other information anywhere in the room. “By having new, up to date learning environments, our classrooms are now much more inviting places to work and 32
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CAMPUS NEWS IN OUR ELEMENT
study,” said Lombardi. Lombardi also notes that the students are clearly very pleased with the upgraded classrooms. During a recent chemistry class, she observed that students brought a lot of equipment out to use for their experiment and then carefully put it all away, noticing that there wasn’t even a speck of dust on the tables when they were done.
‘The hands-on experience in the molecular biology lab helps students actually discover the material that they are learning about, rather than learning about it from a lecture.’
Another room that has been upgraded is the geology lab. It was relocated to a larger space, and includes a door connecting the lab section of the room to the classroom section, which is used for geology lectures. New cabinets and furniture have also been put in to place. The newest lab available to Unity College students is the molecular biology lab, which was formerly a classroom, and has been renovated with new cabinets and furnishings. To create this lab, there was input from several professors who are experienced in creating better learning environments for their students. “Before the molecular biology lab was put in place we had to go to storage rooms in order to get the materials needed for the lab which just wasted time,” said secondary education major Chris McArthur ’13. “Now it feels more like a scientific atmosphere because everything is organized and in one place,” added secondary education major Sasha Hamlin ’14. Both McArthur and Hamlin also agree that the new, much larger tables make it easier to do group projects. “The hands-on experience in the molecular biology lab helps students actually discover the material that they are learning about, rather than learning about
it from a lecture,” said Evan Donoso ’16 wildlife biology major. The new labs are greatly beneficial to Unity College students, providing them with an enhanced environment for their hands-on experiential learning practices. “The point of lab work is to be visual and hands-on, to be able to show students the nature of chemical reactions and related phenomena, and have them ‘explore’ that which we present in the classroom through scientific inquiry,” said Lombardi.
Students work on class assignments in the new laboratories. UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
IN OUR ELEMENT CAMPUS NEWS
Some of Those Woodsmen Are Women A unique sport for a unique college by Mark Tardif Shortly before dusk on a late spring day along Quaker Hill Road, the sounds of chopping and cries of encouragement issue forth from the Vickery Woodsmen’s field on the campus of Unity College. Members of the woodsmen’s team, a coeducational oddity in the hyper segregated world of intercollegiate athletics, are preparing for yet another meet. Though their sport receives spotty television and almost no print media coverage, students who pick up an axe to try their hand at this sport tend to bond with each other in ways that defy traditional boundaries and expectations. Both male and female members of the woodsmen’s team speak with affection for their sport that borders on religious devotion. The uninitiated are sometimes shocked to casually attend a woodsmen’s meet at one of the few colleges in Maine that hold them (Colby, UMaine and Unity are three) and discover the level of athleticism, intensity and … yes … danger that has students with limited athletic credentials prior to college at the 34
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cusp of turning pro. One of Unity’s most talented woodsmen’s team members, Travis Courser, won the Northeast Qualifier competition in April at Finger Lakes Community College in New York. In June he competed at the Great American Lumberjack Feud in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and periodically competes in the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Professional Series. Courser looks back on a catalog of life-affirming experiences as a member of the Unity College woodsmen’s team with a wistful sense of affection. One day, his children may well dust off the DVD collection of Dad’s achievements, which include televised appearances on the Outdoor Network and ESPN-U. Courser and his teammates may consider themselves to be trailblazers. The STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Collegiate Series has grown each year since its inception in 2003. In 2006, a mere six collegiate teams competed. Now that number has crested at 62, with no reason to think the sport will recede in popularity.
CAMPUS NEWS IN OUR ELEMENT
Then it happened: Her axe cleared its mark completely, reaching thin air. She was hooked. For a sport that at first blush seems to be testosterone-fueled, woodsmen’s is actually a model of how the genders can train, work and compete together. The woodsmen’s team practices are not segregated by sex. At competitions it is the norm to see males cheering for their female teammates and vice versa. It is also worth mentioning that the co-ed woodsmen’s team at Unity College has been coached for over a decade by Patricia “Pat” Clark, a longtime professor at the College. Who knew that a sport influenced by the rugged timber traditions of the United States and Canada could be inclusive to the point of defining a paradigm for gender inclusion at the collegiate level. Jennifer Michaud ’13 of East Hampton, Connecticut, considers her experiences as a woodsmen’s team member to have defined her collegiate experience. Like Courser, she won the Northeast Qualifier. Clark points out that there is no national championship for women, so by winning the Northeast Qualifier, Michaud essentially won the nationals for women. The road to woodsmen’s team glory was not a smooth one for Michaud. “When I joined, it was just sink or swim,” Michaud said. “I was either going to catch on or not.” She caught on. “My high point was my first standing block in Canada,” she said. “There is really strong competition in Canada and this was my first big thing to do as a member of the woodsmen’s team.” She settled in, focused on the chopping, barely registering the cries of support all
around her. Then it happened: Her axe cleared its mark completely, reaching thin air. She was hooked. Support and fellowship appear to be the glue that binds together woodsmen’s team members of both genders. Whether male or female, the tradition is to cheer the loudest in competition for the person who is struggling, to give that competitor extra support. Though the names and faces change with the seasons, one truth remains: The sights and sounds of preparation, support and competition will be found each semester on Quaker Hill in Unity and at other college campuses that know the special joys of this emerging sport. Clark says that some current woodsmen’s team members and alumni, both male and female, will be competing during the summer circuit at events such as The Great Maine Lumberjack Show, Chicks with Axes, the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Feud, and Great American Lumberjack Feud.
The uninitiated are often surprised by the level of preparedness and athleticism displayed during Woodsmen team meets.
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IN OUR ELEMENT NEW FACULTY
JANIS BALDA Janis Balda joined Unity as associate professor of sustainable enterprise. Balda is leading the integration of business principles throughout Unity College degree programs. She is developing and participating in transdisciplinary teaching that emphasizes sustainable management and practice in for-profit and non-profit organizations. Balda holds a B.A. in political science from Taylor University; J.D. in law from Loyola University; an LL.M. in law from Cambridge University; M.A. in management from Claremont Graduate University; M.A. in theology from Fuller Theological Seminary; and Ph.D. in education from Claremont Graduate University. She previously served as a professor of management / executive director of research / director of specialty management degree initiatives at the Center for Advancing International Management, St. George’s University, Granada, West Indies. She is co-founder and organizer of the Drucker Society of the Caribbean.
DYLAN DILLAWAY Dylan Dillaway joined Unity as assistant professor of sustainable forest management. He teaches courses that focus on natural resources, complex challenges faced by land stewards and managers, and real-life management strategies and effective protection measures to sustain and protect the earth’s biodiversity. He holds a B.S. in forest management from Pennsylvania State University, a M.S. from the Department of Forestry at the University of Kentucky, and a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His experience includes work as a forester and chief forester, an extension associate, a research assistant, and an assistant professor in the School of Forestry at Louisiana Tech University.
PAMELA MACRAE Pamela MacRae is assistant professor of sustainable fisheries management. Most recently she served as the Program Coordinator of Environmental Science Technology and Assistant Professor of Biology at the Science and Mathematics Division of Tallahassee Community College. She holds a Ph.D. in oceanography and coastal science from the Coastal Fisheries Institute at Louisiana State University, M.S. in zoology with a minor in aquatic ecology from University of Toronto and a B.S. in biology from Saint Mary’s University. Her doctoral research focused on a community approach to identify essential fish habitats in coastal Louisiana, and explored using isotopes as a tool to link habitat use and prey resources and to measure levels of fish residency. Her current research investigates the effects of anthropogenic nitrate enrichment on species composition, density and reproductive output of fish in freshwater springs and tidal marshes in Florida.
CRISTA STRAUB Crista Straub is assistant professor of human ecology. She teaches courses that focus on the interrelationships among people and their environments in the sustainability science general education curriculum. Most recently Straub was a Postdoctoral Fellow – sustainability Solutions Initiative, with the University of Maine. She holds a Ph.D. in ecology and environmental science from the University of Maine in Orono; M.S. in zoology from Southern Illinois University Carbondale; and a B.S. in biology from Southeast Missouri State University Missouri. She intends to continue her postdoctoral and dissertation investigations by integrating previous areas of research such as pro-environmental behavior, environmental communication, water resources, community resilience, and environmental education.
WILLIAM HAFFORD William Hafford ’08 is assistant professor of adventure therapy. His emphasis is adventure therapy and adventure education techniques and theories. Previously, Hafford served on the Unity College Board of Trustees. He holds a Psy.D. in clinical psychology from Antioch University New England Department of Clinical Psychology; a M.S. in clinical psychology from Antioch University New England ; and a B.S. in adventure therapy / adventure education leadership from Unity College. Most recently, Hafford pursued a doctoral level internship from 2012-2013 at the Central Maine Internship Consortium, Kennebec Behavioral Health of Augusta, Maine. A member of the American Psychological Association and Association for Experiential Education, Hafford has offered presentations to community and professionals organizations on topics ranging from multicultural awareness to suicide assessment and prevention.
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NEW STAFF IN OUR ELEMENT
ERIC FARRELL Eric Farrell has joined Unity as assistant director for admissions. He has a specialized focus on serving and shepherding transfer students through the process that brings them to the College. Farrell has transfer-specific recruitment experience, having most recently served as transfer advisor at the University of Wisconsin – Platteville. As a member of the admissions team, he will grow and sustain a strong transfer pool of prospective students, represent Unity College in a variety of contexts, and collaborate with other institutions. He is developing partnerships with community colleges and increasing Unity College’s transfer footprint. Farrell’s additional higher education experience includes serving as a graduate assistant at both Salem State College and Newbury College. He holds a master of education, higher education – student affairs, from Salem State College; and a bachelor of arts, history and secondary education, from Providence College.
MARCUS GRAY Marcus Gray ’06 is assistant director of admissions. Gray counsels prospective students while also focusing on the recruitment of first year students, and assisting the College to sustain a strong recruitment pool of prospective students. Most recently Gray served as coordinator of science-based programs and research for the Safari Club International Foundation (SCI). Located in Washington, D.C., SCI Foundation funds and directs worldwide programs dedicated to wildlife conservation and outdoor education. Gray has also served as a wildlife biologist and safety officer with the United States Department of Agriculture, animal and plant health inspection service; and in related wildlife positions including as a biological technician (Wildlife) at the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia; and as a graduate research assistant with the department of wildlife and fisheries sciences at South Dakota State University. He holds a master of science in wildlife science from South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota; and a bachelor of science in environmental science – wildlife conservation, from Unity College.
TRACY KHOURY Tracy Khoury has joined Unity as the administrative assistant at the Harrison Aldrich Wellness Center. Reporting to Student Affairs, she provides a range of administrative, planning, and wellness services. A resident of Gorham, Maine, she recently relocated to Maine from Iowa. While in Iowa, Khoury served as the administrative assistant to the dean of faculty at Upper Iowa University. She has extensive experience in the human resources management field. Khoury conveys the “warm, safe, confidential student service orientation” of the wellness center, says Anna McGalliard, director of student health services. Khoury maintains a wide range of personal interests including carpentry, interior design and cake decorating. She has eagerly joined the College community, attending events and rolling up her sleeves to assist with wellness activities. She is the spouse of Dr. Melik Peter Khoury, senior vice president for external affairs.
LESLEY LICHKO Lesley Lichko has joined Unity College as major gifts professional. Lichko identifies, engages, cultivates, and stewards current and prospective donors. She introduces prospective donors to Unity College’s strong environmental mission and curricular focus on sustainability science and contributes to the College’s growing national profile. An experienced development professional, Lichko most recently served as development officer at Thomas College. She has also served in development roles at the University of Delaware, Bates College, and the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts. Lichko holds a master of science in ecology and environmental science from the University of Maine, Orono, and a bachelor of science in agriculture from the University of Delaware.
BENJAMIN STAFFORD Benjamin Stafford joined Unity as an instructional technologist for the IT Department. He promotes and supports the effective use of instructional technology to enhance all aspects of teaching, learning, and research. Stafford holds a bachelor of science in secondary education from the University of Maine at Farmington. Since 2001, Ben has served as a teacher for RSU/MSAD 49 in Fairfield, was a member of the Technology Committee and spent four years as a Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI) teacher lead, assisting in the deployment of high school MLTI devices. He has also served as site coordinator for Virtual High School, an online, e-learning environment. UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
IN OUR ELEMENT NEW STAFF
RYAN MASTRANGELO Ryan Mastrangelo is assistant director of admissions/first-year student counselor. She is focused on recruitment of first-year students, developing partnerships with high schools, and contributing to Unity’s expanding national reach. Most recently Mastrangelo served as associate director of admissions at Southwestern Academy in San Marino, California, where she was a comprehensive participant in the admissions process. Her responsibilities included serving on the admissions committee; coordinating special programs and projects both on and off campus; interviewing prospective students and families; developing relationships with educational concerns; and direct recruitment of prospective students. Mastrangelo was also involved in the school’s financial process and financial aid budget assessments. She holds a bachelor of arts in political science and European Union studies from the University of Florida; and a master of arts in European studies, policy, and politics from New York University.
EVA MCVICAR Eva McVicar is assistant director of admissions/international counselor. McVicar focuses on the internationalization of Unity, increasing its international student population, developing and maintaining a strong pool of prospective international students and collaborating with other institutions. She also mentors international students who attend Unity College. An experienced education professional, McVicar most recently served as admission coordinator –regional manager with Gioba Education of Portland, Maine and Prague, Czech Republic, where she recruited new academic clients for faculty-led business programs in Central Europe. She also developed and maintained relationships with faculty and study abroad staff, collaborating with them on the development of new programs and internships. Multilingual and highly proficient in four languages, McVicar holds a master of arts in German Language and Literature / physical education from Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic; and has studied at the University of Southern Maine.
DONOVAN OUTTEN Donavan Outten is director of distance education, a newly created position. An established higher education professional with extensive experience developing online academic programs and managing their delivery, Outten is leading Unity as it embarks upon its first ever expansion into the creation and delivery of online academic programming that is mission driven, effective, and embodies Unity College’s first-in-the-nation focus on sustainability science. As part of the External Affairs umbrella, Outten provides the leadership, planning, coordination, and evaluation of all instructional components of distance and center education. A member of the senior staff team, Outten, who is developing a comprehensive implementation plan for online distance learning implementation, delivery and evaluation, reports directly to Dr. Melik Peter Khoury, senior vice president for external affairs. As associate vice president – academic extension at Upper Iowa University, Outten was responsible for undergraduate and graduate admissions, student financial assistance, and supervised a professional staff of 75. He oversaw a budget of $19 million across 19 education centers in seven states, university-wide admissions and student aid. Outten holds a bachelor of science degree in psychology from Bethune-Cookman University; a master of science in human resource development and administration from Barry University; and doctorate in educational leadership from Nova Southeastern University.
ALECIA SUDMEYER Alecia Sudmeyer is Unity College’s webmaster. This newly created position is part of the Marketing Department and under the External Affairs umbrella. An experienced web services professional, Sudmeyer manages the development, design, maintenance, and impact of Unity College’s web properties. A focus for her efforts is supporting the further enhancement of Unity’s developing national visibility and brand awareness as a leader in sustainability science. Sudmeyer has over 15 years of web managerial experience as owner and general manager of her own digital agency. Her varied experiences include work as an academic translator, e-learning and web consultant, teaching English as a foreign language, and web designer. She holds a master in comparative studies from Universidade de Lisboa in Lisbon, Portugal; and a bachelor of arts in English and American literature from Brandeis University.
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ALUMNI FACULTY AND STAFF NEWS
Faculty and Staff News President Stephen Mulkey has been elected to the Natural Resources Council of Maine (NRCM) Board of Directors. The election of President Mulkey to the NRCM board combines the success and expertise of two widely respected environmental institutions. “At every turn during his presidency, Dr. Mulkey has demonstrated concern not only for the larger picture of global climate change and the sustainability of this planet, but for the state of Maine, a place that produced the vision in 1965 that led to the founding of Unity College,” said Dr. Melik Peter Khoury, Senior Vice President for External Affairs. Professor Amy Arnett, Associate Professor Erika Latty, Instructor Kathleen Dunckel and Associate Professor Brent Bibles received a fifth year of EPSCoR funding to study hemlock ecosystems. The project supports undergraduate research projects, attendance at conferences to present findings, and time for analyzing results for publication. Currently three publications are in progress, two senior theses are being conducted, and two students are paid as data managers.
Administrative Assistant / Event Coordinator Reeta Benedict began her new position in the fall semester 2013. She provides administrative support for the career resource center, outdoor adventure center, experiential programs and the community based learning office. Benedict most recently served as associate director of annual giving. Associate Professor Carrie Diaz Eaton spoke at Radford College and served as a consultant to their new National Science Foundation (NSF) funded math-infused biology curriculum. Diaz Eaton was elected as Program Chair of BIO-SIGMAA for a two year term as officer for 2013-2014. BIOSIGMAA is a Special Interest Group of the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) devoted to excellence in undergraduate mathematical education and research. In 2013, Diaz Eaton presented her research on Ecological Networks at Bates College and Valparaiso University. She was awarded a Unity College Faculty Professional Development Grant which allowed her to return to Radford College for an invitation-only Quantitative Biology workshop. This grant allowed her to sponsor an
undergraduate summer research student in ecological disease modeling, Kari Lemelin, who subsequently presented at the National Meeting of the MAA, Mathfest and won a highly prestigious award. Diaz Eaton also was an invited speaker at the International Symposium of Biomathematics and Ecology Education and Research in Arlington, Virginia. She discussed recent work to form QUBES, a consortium of professional organizations and institutions focused on Quantitative Undergraduate Biology Education and Synthesis. An article written by Assistant Professor Dylan Dillaway has been accepted by the journal ArthropodPlant Interactions. Dillaway is the second author on the paper, which focuses on the “effect of an exotic herbivore, Adelges tsugae, on photosynthesis of a highly susceptible Tsuga host” This is the second article Dillaway has published with Unity College as his affiliation. Megan Fournier, Manager of the Unity College Center for the Performing Arts / Arts Coordinator, participated as a panelist in a forum held as part of the SappyFest Music Festival in Sackville,
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ALUMNI FACULTY AND STAFF NEWS New Brunswick, Canada. The Why Nowhere? Conference spotlights small festival producers and rural presenters from around the world. Fournier was part of the Character Development panel discussion.
College, including the recruitment of international students and development of online program delivery. Most recently Saltalamachia served as senior associate director of admissions.
Professor Don Lynch participated in the College Board to score Advanced Placement (AP) Psychology examinations in Kansas City, Missouri. Over 450 Psychology faculty members from countries spanning the globe were present at the readings. He also participated in a workshop on DSM 5: Changes in Substance Related and Addiction Disorders at the Maine Counseling Association’s Annual Conference in Rockport, Maine.
Under the facilitation of Professor Gerry Saunders students in the teacher education program offered a variety of presentations during the fall semester 2013. These presentations included leading a series of personal responsibility, group initiative and collaboration activities for over 100 6th graders from Mt. View Middle School. This marks the 8th year of this collaborative effort to improve school climate and student performance at Mt. View Middle School. Students in Methods of Teaching Secondary Science (ED 3443) presented a session at the Maine Science Teachers Association Annual Conference. The topic focused on the use of demonstrations to develop science and engineering practices as described in the Next Generation Science Standards. The same group of students also facilitated a workshop of Family Science at the MSTA conference.
Associate Professor Tom Mullin was awarded the 2013 Maine Campus Compact Faculty Award for Excellence in Community Based Learning. He was also elected to serve on the Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s (ATC) Stewardship Council, which is the ATC’s national policy and management advisory committee. Mullin was elected to a three year term as a Member at Large to the board of directors of the National Association for Interpretation. He also Served as a judge for the National Outdoor Book Awards and the National Interpretive Media Awards Program.
Director of the Writing Center Judy Williams and Michelle Plance ’14, a writing center consultant double major in wildlife biology and environmental writing & media studies, will attend the Northeast Writing Centers Association’s annual conference during the spring semester 2014 at Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island. Plance received funding through the Undergraduate Research Program Committee’s Student Academic Engagement Fund to attend. The topic for this year’s conference will be “Difference & Inclusion: Writing Centers as Sites for Change.”
Joe Saltalamachia ’95 been named director of admissions. He oversees a dynamic, fast-paced department that is expanding the geographic reach of Unity
Professor Michael “Mick” Womersley and his student wind crew have completed the current phase of field work for -- and Womersley has
Charlie Krause, Student Center Manager / Catering Chef, contributed an article entitled “CREDO” to a book of essays about climate change entitled Facing the Change. The essays are personal reflections about how climate change affects each contributor. He received an honorable mention award for his contribution.
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begun synoptic analysis of -- wind assessment data from 20 plus diverse sites in Maine. The data was gathered under the auspices of the Maine wind survey. This represents the best and most complete data set yet available in the public domain for policy and decisionmaking related to Maine wind power. The survey was funded by Efficiency Maine using federal DoE and USDA research funds. The University of Maine School of Engineering technology was the primary partner. Womersley is once again lead organizer for the Maine Association for Search and Rescue Search Team Leader Course, and is planning a sponsored field program to study island and other remote community energy organizations in the Highlands and Islands region of Scotland, for students and Maine regional community energy stakeholders, possibly for spring 2014. Professor Barry Woods continues his scholarship using Excel to calculate descriptive and inferential statistics. Woods received a Unity College Faculty Grant for writing three more Excel worksheets on inferential statistics including the Dixon Q-test used to determine a possible outlier. In addition, he continues to score the Advanced Placement (AP) Statistics exams where he presented a workshop on using Excel and summary stats, instead of the actual data, to calculate 2-sample t-tests for the difference of two sample means at the annual AP Statistics Reading in Kansas City, Missouri. The session was part of the AP Stats Best Practices night and was a result of his sabbatical work from the Fall of 2006. Woods gave a presentation on the Anderson-Darling normality test using Excel at the most recent New England Mathematics Association regional meeting held at North Shore Community College in Danvers, Massachusetts.
CLASS NOTES ALUMNI
ALL ABOUT ALUMNI We all have a Unity story to tell. If you are or if you know of alumni who are doing interesting things that are making a difference, please let us know. Also, Unity’s 50th anniversary is just around the corner. You can help us celebrate by telling us your story about Unity. We’d love to hear it and pass it on. Please send us stories, story opportunities, or ideas by email at email@example.com. Special thanks to Dot Quimby for collecting so many class notes.
1969 Mark Alter, professor of educational psychology at NYU, teaches full time, publishes and lectures. He and Amy have three children and five grandchildren.
1970 Steve Ginensky and his wife, Ronnie, run a CPA practice.
1971 Renee (Chaney) Harrison works in the IT Department at the University Hospital in San Antonio, Texas. Peter Hayes retired from a cellular phone company 12 years ago.
1972 Dennis Esterow is a police officer with the New York MTA and plans to retire in 2016. He and Dee are rebuilding their home after damage from Hurricane Sandy. They celebrated their 25th anniversary with a cruise to Bermuda in July. They have two daughters and a granddaughter.
1973 Larry Abele retired from his job as aquatic biologist at the New York Department of Environmental Conservation. He is a ski instructor for handicapped children at the Double H Ranch near Lake George, N.Y., and enjoys sea kayaking, cross country skiing, wilderness camping and his garden. Lou Abramson has taught and coached in the Bayonne, N.J., schools for 37 years. He and Sue have a son and a daughter Fred Dearnley has been a photographer for 40 years. He had a photography exhibit, “Talking to the Universe,” at the Stadler Gallery in Kingfield, Maine. The exhibit showcased his understanding of the physical world and how he relates to it.
1974 John Berglund is a carpenter and Rosalee (Ranquist) works for the Maine Department
of Labor. They have a daughter and a son.
a daughter and two sons.
Kevin Dyer retired from United States Postal Service after 35 years. He has two grandsons and a granddaughter.
Russ Vincent retired from the Navy in 2001 and works from home as a subcontractor network administrator for the Navy. He and Judy have a mountain retreat in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Judy’s brother, Bob Berongi. Russ has a son.
Arthur Jasmin is manager of the Northern Maine branch of Quality Insulation, covering Augusta east to Camden and west to Farmington, and up to the Canadian border. He builds furniture and makes turkey calls. Roxanne (Kelley) Morse is a Belfast area high school librarian. She served 15 years as an elementary school librarian and 18 years as an English teacher at Searsport High School.
1975 Bob Berongi is regional sales manager for Lyndex Nikken and will be married in 2013. Rick Ceballos is a musician with several bands, one called Hip Replacements. Rick has several videos on 60rick on YouTube Mary Guariglia owns a business working as a nutrition consultant and marketing mentor. Jay Lippert retired after 35 years as a National Park Service Ranger, and now teaches firearms for the Seasonal Ranger Academy at Unity, UMass, Amherst and Temple. He has a son and a daughter
1976 Ken DeVuyst is a retired police captain. He has a daughter. Dave Govatski co-authored a book published by Island Press, Forests for the People: The Story of America’s Eastern National Forests, and had a map published for the Pondicherry National Wildlife Refuge in northern New Hampshire. He is working on a second book on the Civilian Conservation Corps in the White Mountains. He continues to guide natural history trips, give presentations, work for Raven Interpretive when needed, and do bird surveys and assessments. In 2011, Dave was selected as the Volunteer of the Year for the National Wildlife Refuge System. Jim Verble retired from his job as grain inspector for ADM/Countrymark, Inc.
eight illustrations for her high school friend, Nancy Van Iderstine’s cookbook VeganGluten-Free Recipes. It is available on Kindle and in print. Mark Edwards spent eight years in forestry, 11 years as a missionary in Ecuador, and pastored for two churches in Maine. Mark and his wife Melanie have moved to Washington to be close to his son and five grandchildren. He is a pastor in Issaquah. John Gould is a detective for the Bureau of Motor Vehicles Investigation in Augusta. He and Esther have two adult children. Bob Kabat is still forest and park supervisor at the DAR State Forest in Goshen, MA. He and Deb have two daughters. Louise (Paquette) Furman owns Critter Caravan, with over 75 animals providing entertainment for corporate events, private parties, and fairs and festivals. She has two grown children and will soon be a grandmother. Chris Schoppmeyer retired in December, 2013, after 33 years as a law enforcement special agent for NOAA Fisheries Service. He was honored at a retirement lobster bake and barbeque at the U.S. Coast Guard Station in New Castle, N.H. in September. Fred Seidler is a professional actor, working in film, television and theater. He plays Dennis Avery on Investigation Discovery’s “Deadly Devotions” which started in August, 2013.
Tyler Schueler retired from a medical supply company and lives in Sarasota, Fla. David Symes is a rural mail carrier in Gardiner with four years to retirement. His daughter, Karen ’08 has a child. He stays in touch with Charlie Kenney ’69 and Bob Howes ’73. David and Becky traveled to Alaska in August.
Paul Tamburro retired as department head/chairperson of social work at Indiana State University. He works full time on a project he and Peter Smith Terry started years ago: Sunrise Dawn, named after the Abenaki tribe, is a Northeast Woodland Native American-focused business.
Nancy Tracy received her master’s in teaching English as a second language from Fairfield University in 2010 and teaches ESL at the Gilbert School. John and Nancy have
Sybil (Blazej) Blazej-Yee has painted
Sherry Williams ’76 on a ski trip when she was at Unity College..
John Amato is semi-retired after working in the Nevada casinos, and living in North Carolina. He plans to move back to Oregon.
Robert “Beau” Doherty, director of the Connecticut Special Olympics, was featured in a Hartford Courant article about Unified Sports, an organization that pairs persons with and without disabilities on the same sports teams. He started the organization in Connecticut and it has since spread countrywide. Lonnie Jandreau, a forester for Prentiss & Carlisle, has moved from the northern Aroostook district to the central Aroostook district. He and Janet have one son
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ALUMNI CLASS NOTES Brian McQuarrie retired for the second time, first after 25 years in the Army and in 2011 from a job with the federal government. He has moved from near the ocean to the high desert country south of San Diego. Roger Schoen retired as an Army SFC Sergeant in 2005, and is now a cook at Hilton Garden Inn in Raleigh, N.C. Don Young is manager of a 32-unit apartment complex providing permanent housing for homeless veterans.
1979 Don Miller is a nurse at Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland. He is active in theater in the Portland area. He has two daughters. Phil Pouech is director of manufacturing for NRG Systems, a world leader in wind energy measurement technology. He is on the town select board in Hinesburg, Vt., and has been active in the XL pipeline protests with 350.org. Scott Ramsay is Maine State director of off-road vehicles, one of the country’s top programs with the largest ATV trail system. Scott and Cheryl have two sons Trenetta Saba received a degree in photography from University of Maine/ Augusta in 2013. She owns Saba’s Photography in Waterville. Irene (Sauer) Hebert teaches third grade in the West Brookfield (Massachusetts) Elementary. She and Carol Abbott celebrated their third anniversary in June, and became grandparents in April, 2012. Mark Maynard is automotive editor for the Union-Tribune San Diego, co-hosts a weekly automotive TV show “Overdrive San Diego,” and has an internet radio show “Maynard’s Garage Radio.” Tony Stoyko is lab manager at SGS North America in Denver. He and Charlene have a daughter. Frank Zito is a business manager, an outside travel agent, and a church treasurer and deacon. He has two grandsons, with another on the way.
Tim Fresh owns Fresh Landscaping and Estate Management in Holliston, Mass. He is married and has two sons. Alan Przybylski and Lynda became grandparents for the second time. Al is director of Global Sourcing for Hartford Technologies, and travels regularly, mostly to China and Thailand. Lynda runs their imported oils and vinegars store, Bella Gusta. They visited Prague. Steve Puibello received his Depression Bipolar Support Alliance certification as a peer to peer specialist in July. He is a consultant in the field of recovery and wellness, as a public speaker and a facilitator.
1981 Bill Alexander owns Keys & Locks, a mobile locksmith business. He and Doreen have been married for 27 years and have two children. Doug Aloisi is manager of a federal fish hatchery for U.S. Fish & Wildlife in Genoa, Wisc. He and Debbie have five children and two grandchildren.
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Fred Miller has been promoted to estimator/project manager after 13 years of working for Southern Tier Custom Fabricators. He has a son and a daughter, both in college. Johanna (Norton) Millheiser was a social worker, working with the disabled and autistic. Steve ’80 is a supervisor at RTS Packaging in Scarborough. They have two children. Leo Paquette ran Employment Times. He is now a carpenter. He and Jeanne have one son. Daniel Spinner works with UPS and Generators for Hospital and the Mission Critical Market between Philadelphia and Maine.
Brian Croft is a general contractor for residential and commercial projects in the Unity area. He is also a State of Maine building inspector who inspected Unity’s TerraHaus and the science building addition. Deb (Rouleau) has a garden business with three greenhouses, a shade house, and two acres of potted plants in Burnham. Mark Caron is in his 30th year as a regional wildlife biologist for the State of Maine. He is married to Ellen. Joyce (Farrin) Lucas is librarian at Winslow High School and president of the Maine Association of School Librarians. She runs a small volunteer library in Smithfield. Jim ’79, a Maine state regional fisheries biologist, retired in 2012. Sandy (Fletcher) Ritter owns a family therapy practice and an equine psychotherapy non-profit, Healing Through Horses. Sandy and Michele (McCarthy) Aronson run Spartan races together. Jeff is working for LL Bean, and all three girls are in Maine.
Mike Koutelis has consulted for 30 years in the energy efficiency technology industry. Rose is a licensed Bowen Therapist. They have four grown children and a granddaughter.
Matt Mattus is director of visual design at Hasbro in a new division, Integrated Play, which creates apps that play with a toy. He has a gardening blog, Growing with Plants, and is on the board of the American Rock Garden society. He is also a spokesman for Troy-Bilt.
Bruce Arral is chef at the Mattapoisett Chowder House in Massachusetts
Keith Hough is in his 29th year as deputy chief of the Assumption College Campus Police Department. He and Heather have eight-year old twins.
Stephen Puibello ’80 participating in the AIDS / LifeCycle 2013 event.
with a host family on Amanti Island in Lake Titicaca.
Dan Leduc traveled to Machu Picchu and the Inca Trail in Peru with Pack Paddle Ski, a company owned by Rick French ’80. They hiked 26 miles in altitudes above 12,000 feet, studied the culture of Peru, and lived
Chris Jones is a log scaler for Hancock Lumber in Bridgton. For 25 years he managed a Vermont mill that made 18th century musical instruments. Chris has four children and three grandchildren. Jim Morrissey published an article in the Journal of Emergency Services entitled “Research Suggests Time for Change in Pre-hospital Spinal Immobilization,” which argues that spine immobilization may cause more harm than good. Jim is Alameda County EMS, PHCC Supervisor, NCRIC Medical Intelligence Officer and FBI Tactical Paramedic. In his spare time, he builds outdoor furniture and built a tree house 40 feet up in his redwoods. Billy Schwab has been with Coca-Cola, Daytona Beach, for 22 years and is the district sales manager. He and Donna have two children. Billy coaches a 14 and under travel softball team, and is on the leadership team at his church. Amy Strum is a registered nurse in the emergency department at Maine Medical in Portland. She lives in North Bridgton. Glen Wall is an oil and hazardous materials specialist for the Maine DEP, and Toni (Rosperich) is Maine state director of the Children with Special Needs Program.
1983 Diane “Boston” Bemis works fulltime as a cashier for a major food chain and loves living in Florida.
Doug Stover ’81 at the Outer Banks Group National Park sign in Cape Hatteras. Doug Stover was appointed by the United Nations General Assembly to advise on world heritage sites. He will work in New York and Paris. In July 2013, after 32 years, he retired from his post as park historian and cultural resources manager for the National Park Service. Donna (Wesson) Wyman became a grandmother in February. Donna is a school occupational therapist and works during the summer at Kamp for Kids.
1982 Bruce Desmond has three children all living in Maine. He and Dorothy have been married for 10 years. Bruce is a marketing representative for Deacons Bay Ventures LLC which owns and operates four ServePro franchises, one of the largest and rated best in customer service. Ralph Dunn owns Happy Valley Forestry Services. In May 2013, he attended the Unity College open house with his daughter and son.
Owen Devereux is a staff attorney with the Nevada Supreme Court. In April he went on safari in the Lower Zambezi Valley hunting bull elephant. Shirley (Mickens) Gesner is a clerk for the town of Clinton, Conn. Water Pollution Control Commission. She completed an environmental health training course at Southern Connecticut State University. Shirley and Darryl have two children. Tim Page is a paramedic in New Hampshire and Vermont. He has written a children’s book and is preparing to self-publish. Tim and Sheryl have a daughter, two stepdaughters, and they are grandparents. Steven Verkouteren volunteers on the Tuscaroa Trail, which runs behind his house in Berkeley Springs, W.V., and off the Appalachian Trail. He thru hiked the AT prior to attending Unity. Brian Woodbury and Craig Aronson ’81 drove 6,700 miles in March and April 2013 starting and ending in Maine and stopping in Utah, Arizona, Tennessee, Georgia, and North Carolina. Brian co-manages Toadstool Book Shop in Milford, N.H., as well as owning a photography business. Gary Zane was promoted in August 2013 to vice president for student affairs at Unity College.
CLASS NOTES ALUMNI Mattson Rental Properties and Willow Creek Cottages. They have four children. Tracy (Goldstein) Quigley teaches fifth grade. She and Dave have a daughter and a son. Todd Hartford is still a computer-aided civil designer for Coffin Engineering in Augusta. Bill Hazen earned a degree in leisure studies and services at the University of Oregon, but has pursued a 25-year career in portrait photography, the last 18 with Lifetouch Portrait Studios. Debbie (Matern) Howe is a full time foster mother to a 15-year-old boy. She has an adult son. The whole Roy (Rick ’84) family at the baptism of tenth child Abraham.
1984 Wayne Berger and Deb have a daughter who just graduated from college. Joan (Bragg) Desmond has a daughter and two sons. Robin Clark works for Whidbey Watershed Stewards, an educational and environmental non-profit on Whidbey Island, Wash. She has been active in their fight against coal exports, opposing plans for a coal shipping terminal in nearby Bellingham, WA. Robin has two teenage stepchildren. Kathy (Denoncour) Baril manages the Health Insurance Premium Payment Program for New Hampshire Health & Human Services. She moved to Concord last year. She runs road races, completing 70 last year. Dan Despard is the senior director of strategic consulting for Casey Family Programs. He consults for state child welfare programs in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and Arizona. Lynda (Paquette) retired from 26 years of working with troubled children and families. They have a son, a daughter, and two grandsons. Signe (Dolloff) Klinger moved to Maine and is a sonographer (ultra-sound exams) at Down East Community Hospital in Machias. He has a son and a daughter. Barbara Drury owns Manilow’s Canine Playground in Leominster, Mass. Patti (Emmons) Poff teaches first to fourth grade science enrichment and fourth grade math in the school her son and daughter attend. Last year Patti was certified in Hatha Yoga. Dan Kinney is a founding partner in Catamount Solar, the only solar co-op in Vermont. He and Carol have three children. His son plans to transfer to Unity.
Dodi Marvell was a special education teacher. She volunteers at a school and at cancer organizations. She is taking classes in art and religion. She has a son. Rick McAlister works in crash reconstruction for the Crash Lab in Hampton, N.H., after retiring as a Maine State Police Sergeant in 2010. He and Mimi have two children and grandchildren. John Middleton has worked for Wilsonart for 21 years. He is regional sales representative covering most of Massachusetts and all of Rhode Island. Lauralyn, his partner of 12 years, has daughters. Judy Parker is a baby sitter, pet sitter, and home schools her daughter. Rick Roy and Cammie welcomed their 10th child, a son, on March 7, 2013. Rick is a bureau of land management field manager in the Oregon Burns District.
1985 David Heinsohn-Roe was promoted to director of facilities at Willow Hill School. He and Mary have twin sons. Mike Kinsella is a crop adjuster for Rural Community Insurance Services. His territory is New England, but he travels to crisis areas across the country. He lives with his partner, Winnie, and has two sons and a granddaughter who live in Maine. Nicholas Moros is in research and development at Alcoa Technical Center. He plays soccer in the Pittsburgh league. He has two grandsons, with a third on the way. David Wood is a residential manager working with adults with developmental disabilities in Ravenna, Ohio.
1986 Tracey (Coffin) Mattson is director of the Learning Assistance & Resource Center, coordinator for the Military Resource Center, and online instructor and a software manager at Radford University. Randy owns
Kim McKenzie received a bachelor of arts in May 2013 in anthropology, specializing in archaeology, from Sonoma State University. Loren Raymond is office manager at Packaging Corporation of America. He competes in logging competitions (but not the greased pole!). He has two daughters and a new granddaughter. Mark Shepard wrote a book, Restoration Agriculture: Real-World Permaculture for Farmers, published in 2013 by Acres U.S.A. He is CEO of Forest Agriculture Enterprises and New Forest Farms in Wisconsin, and also produces Shepard’s Hard Cyder. He and his wife Jen have two sons. Steve Tetreault is shift supervisor at Foam Concepts. His book, The Bear Dogs of Katahdin is selling well. He and Pat have been married for 15 years and they have four grandchildren between her two sons and his two daughters.
1987 Diane Borden-Billiot is visitor services manager for the Southwest Louisiana National Wildlife Refuge Complex and has managed the refuge programs through two hurricanes and an oil spill. She has a son and a daughter. Mitch Jordan retired as a Massachusetts corrections officer after 20 years, and now works part time as a paraprofessional at an elementary school. Mike Kester is deputy chief, patrol division, with the Harlingen Texas Police Department where he has worked for 24 years. He and Debi have been married for 23 years and have four children and eight grandchildren, with two more on the way. Mike Lockett is a stay-at-home dad for three children while Carissa teaches. Mike runs the after-school enrichment program at the kids’ school, and built an organic garden and outdoor classroom for them. Tom Martin has worked at TRC Environmental Corporation for 25 years, as a project scientist/industrial hygienist.
Chris Misavage is teaching third grade, specializing in math. He and Nancy have two sons. Gabrielle (Pap-Nemes) Spaziani is a silk screener for Stadium System, has a sewing business, and waits tables at an English pub in Canaan. She has a son and two daughters. David Shoemaker retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army the summer of 2013. He attends the Landing School in Arundel in the marine systems program to learn how to repair boats. He and Nancy have a sailboat (40’ Caliber LRC s/v Nonstop) and plan to go sailing for several years when he graduates next June. Roger Smith has worked for 13 years as an information systems support specialist for the Maine Office of Information Technology. He and Lynne celebrated their 24th anniversary in June and have two daughters and a son.
1988 April Baxter visits Montville for the Maine Fiddle Camp for a week each June. She plays fiddle and bodhran (an Irish frame drum). She is the office administrator at the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House in Provincetown, Mass. Michele Beucler is in her 20th year with Idaho Fish and Game as a full time staff biologist. She teaches Nia (martial arts, dance, yoga combined) at the YMCA. Michele managed a watershed event, the Idaho Wildlife Summit, bringing people together with diverse interests in wildlife to foster a shared responsibility in protecting and managing Idaho’s wildlife. She keeps in touch with Bryan Gorsira ’86, Dave Rzewnicki ’89, and Jeremy Eastman ’86. Joanna (Clifford) Magoon is a consultant to sustainable energy non-profits, and Bruce ’86 is a triage team leader for Wellpoint. From New Hampshire, he remotely supervises a team of mental health counselors in a call center in Denver, Colo. They have a daughter. Bonilee Derlien is an executive assistant at Google in Seattle, and is involved with their Leeds project. She has a daughter and spent three weeks in Wyoming this summer. Anna “Lauren” (Rappel) Dillane owns Boomerang Thrift Boutique, “BARS: Bodywork that changes people’s lives,” De-cluttering to Find your True Life, and “Business Coaching to Make Money.” She is also a community organizer for a local meet-up group in Los Alamos, N.M. Chris Schaum retired as training captain of the Santa Fe Fire Department. He is an arborist and owns Chris’s Tree Service.
1989 John Bucci is asbestos and lead inspector for the Maine Department of Environmental UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
ALUMNI CLASS NOTES Protection in Augusta. Classmates Peter Blanchard and Brian Beneski as well as Jon Woodard ’88, Nate Thompson ’91 and Lou Pizzuti ’90 all work with him. John has been married for 22 years and has two sons. Duncan Churches is assistant manager of the Bowie, Md., gym. He and Carol have a daughter. Tim “TJ” Donovan is a NOAA Special Agent protecting fisheries, marine animals and endangered species. He and Michelle celebrate their 18th anniversary this year, and have two children. Jesse Jaycox is regional biologist for New York State Parks in the Taconic and Palisades regions, with his office in Staatsburg, working on environmental project review, invasive species removal, habitat restoration, and deer management. Beth (Kester) DeCorte is a nurse supervisor at Aaron Manor in Penfield, N.Y. Theresa (Lane) Forino is EMT, fire search and rescue, hazmat technician and volunteer firefighter for emergency services in New Cumberland, Pa. She spends time helping friends in the GLBT community. Chris Werhane is military operations director for Adaptive Adventures, outdoor programs for the person with disabilities. He worked at 22 ski resorts last winter, and is adapting Stand Up Paddle boards for river use. He has a daughter and a son.
1990 Patrick Brasington is Phoenix district chief ranger, and has been with the Department of the Interior for 23 years. He and Jenni have a son. Richard Dubois has been promoted to sergeant with the Augusta Police Department, working as a detective and special agent. Kelly (Edwards) McNeil has a son and three daughters. Teri (George) Mueller has been a program specialist and advocate for adults with disabilities for five years. Teri has a daughter, two sons, and two grandchildren. Melissa (Graves) Sikes is the natural resource education specialist for the Fairbanks Soil and Water Conservation District. She and Derek have three daughters. Cheryl Groom is deputy manager at Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge outside of Des Moines, Iowa. Tracey Hall is an education coordinator for Rhode Island Audubon. She is a massage therapist with her own mobile business, Onthe-Spot-Therapy, and works part time at an independent living center. She spends her spare time hiking, biking and kayaking. Eric Harms is a security guard at the Portland Jetport in Maine.
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Ed Hurlburt played in the alumni soccer game during Alumni Weekend.
Matt McClintock is an environmental police officer in New Bedford, and a senior chief in the Coast Guard Reserve. His daughter is a first year at Unity
Jeff Duguay is research & survey program manager for the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and recently completed a woodcock project on their use of nocturnal habitat. He is also an associate professor of wildlife management at Delta State University.
Mike Miller is labor supervisor at Essroc Cement in Nazareth, Pa. He and Deborah have a daughter. Phil Perhamus is a wetlands biologist for AMEC, Inc. in Somerset, N.J. and lives in Palmer Township, Penn. He is still into guitar and singing and has several YouTube videos of home recordings. He has a daughter and two sons. Penny (Picard) Sampson is a credit analyst for the Bank of America in Belfast, and is also a track official at the Unity Raceway. Tony Sabilia owns Fast Signs in New London and Waterford, Conn. He and Krista have four children. Jamie Sincage has worked for Disney’s Animal Kingdom for 20 years and is now the zoological manager. He and Kathleen have three children.
1991 Joe Benedict has been promoted to waterfowl and small game management program leader for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. In addition to his waterfowl management duties, his program is now responsible for Bobwhite quail management, and management of doves, other migratory webless game birds, squirrels, rabbits and furbearers. He and Lindsey have a son. Keith Kinkead is assistant manager of Big Lots. He and Kelly have two sons Lars Knakkergaard is a job coach with the Price Center in Newton, Mass., helping individuals who have jobs in the community. He showed his Maine panoramic photographs at James’s Gate Restaurant in Jamaica Plain. Whitney (Messersmith) Foskey owns Virtual Pride, a virtual assistant business. She and Chris have two children.
Nate Gray is project leader/scientist with the Maine Department of Marine Resources. He worked on the Sebasticook River this spring during the herring run. They have passed over 2,000,000 river herring (including some American shad) up the river. Nate took some Unity students on a tour of the Benton Falls fish lift facility. Kaz Henmi is vice president at Citigroup Global Markets (Investment Bank side) in Tokyo. He has a daughter. Stacy (Kuerner) Gregson is a veterinary technician. She and her husband, John, run a pet crematory and a concrete business. They went to Africa in February 2013, enjoyed the animals in Kruger National Park, and hunted. Thom Morrissette is a union boilermaker for a power plant construction and engineering company in Rochester, N.Y. Kelly (Payne) ’94 works in the maintenance department at Selkirk State Park. They have two sons. Jay Pilgrim is a senior special agent at U.S. Fish & Wildlife headquarters in Arlington, Va. He and Tammy have been married for 17 years.
1993 Holli Andrews is executive director of the nonprofit Framingham (Massachusetts) Downtown Renaissance. Mary Blake is an inventory arborist for Davey Tree Experts and became a Massachusetts Certified Arborist after her state exam in April. Sean Bowen is food safety and aquaculture specialist for the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources. He and Shelley have two children.
Lori Murphy is a certified personal trainer and works for Science magazine in the e-media department. She and Moustafa Shokry were married in December 2012. Cydney Smith owns a health and wellness company, Mompreneur Wellness Community in Keene, N.H. She has written a book Spirited Nutrition and conducts private coaching and programs. Chris Cotton ’95 has taken a sabbatical from his business, Inner Connections, and is doing consulting work. They have two daughters. Nathan Thompson is an oil & hazardous materials responder for the Maine Department of Environmental Protection in Bangor.
Major Chris Cloutier ’93.
Chris Cloutier was named game warden major/ deputy chief of the Maine Warden Service in April 2013. Kristy (DeRoche) Morsey is a clinical products analyst at Athenahealth in Belfast. She homeschools her three sons. Tom Dietzel received a 10-year distinguished service award from Trustees of Reservations at the Naumkeag Reservation in Stockbridge, Mass. He is a park ranger at Hale Reservation. He has two daughters and a granddaughter. Heather Francis is school program director at Tanglewood 4-H Camp and Learning Center in Lincolnville, Maine. She and Chris have two children. Rob Grahn has a new position: field team leader with Massachusetts Parks & Recreation. He manages staff, revenue, environmental issues and recreation for 35 parks and forest-lands in the central part of the state. Michelle (Snyder) graduated from Salter College with high honors and is now working in the medical billing field. Joanna Greenwood swam from Lincolnville to Islesboro in August 2013 as a fundraiser for LifeFlight of Maine. Joanna is a Maine master swimmer. Scott Hahn is production manager at Pleasant View Gardens in Epsom, N.H. He and Vicki have two daughters. Charlene “Sunshine” Hood was at Rangeley Lake State Park last summer, and this summer she will be manager at Lamoine State Park. Kristel (Price) McClenahan, her husband, Dave, and Kristy (DeRoche) Morsey visited campus in June 2013 before heading to Acadia. Jim McKnight married MacKenzie in September 2012. Jim is a police officer in Shelburne, Vt., and a deputy game warden. Bruce McNicholas is materials control supervisor at CMC Biologics, and oversees the warehouse plus shipping and distribution. He and Kora will be celebrating their 16th anniversary in October.
CLASS NOTES ALUMNI Jen (Pearson) Stowe is the captain for the north region of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, an area that has doubled in size. Her K-9 search and rescue dog, Emmitt had to retire after being diagnosed with lymphoma. Jason ’92 works for The Nature Conservancy and is responsible for new offices in Africa. Crystal (Weston) Rider is safety supervisor for Durham School Services in Worcester, Mass. She has a son.
1994 Denise (Beach) Buckley received her 20-year pin as a fisheries biologist with U.S. Fish & Wildlife at both the Craig Brook and the Green Lake National Fish Hatcheries. Jim ’92 is a sergeant with the Bangor Police Department, commander of their special response team and a member of their bomb squad. Jeff Chase is agriculture specialist at Maine Academy of Natural Sciences in Hinckley. He and Carey have two children. Jerry Donahue is a K9 Handler with Phaelan with the Middleboro (Mass.) Police Department. Mary (Flood) Poirier and her husband, Jerry, have closed their gem store in Saco, and moved to South Carolina. Mary is working at home for Alpine Access and they are selling their gemstones at a local flea market. Jon Giracca is in his 20th year at the Berkshire County District Attorney’s Office as a victim witness advocate. He lives with his finance, Marie Arenasi, and her son. Joe is the district chairman for the Appalachian Trail District of Western Massachusetts Boy Scouts. Eric Heinrich works for the Glastonbury, Conn. Parks and Recreation Department. He and Anne have two sons. Joya Kobu runs a business in Japan, and hopes to return to Maine someday. Tom Kostovick is property manager for Leighton Farm Development in Falmouth. He and Allison have two sons. Rick LaFlamme received an award for exemplary service at the Maine State Game Wardens annual awards banquet in April 2013. Nicole Salotti owns Jamaica Estates, a booking agent for private villas in Jamaica, and also manages her husband’s sound therapy practice and musical group. Tony Therrien teaches seventh grade life science in Killingly, Conn. He and Willow have three boys. They are running a farm business. Laurene Wistner is administrative assistant for the fine arts department of the Conroe, Texas School District and Robb is field director for management inspections for U.S. Customs. They have two sons.
Jim Bandelin is a GE Health Care Manager in Baltimore, Md. He and Jill have two sons.
John Blais had his article, Belgrade Bassin’, featured in the March 2013 issue of Field and Stream Magazine. He is a Maine Guide, as well as a National Guard senior planner.
Hauns “Doc” Bassett is master specialist for Jobs for Maine Graduates at Erskine Academy in South China. He and Kim have two children.
Todd Bowen is battalion chief and K-9 handler for the Bridgeton, N.J., Fire Department. He and Dawn have four children. Todd and his classmates, Dale Black, Dan Brooks, Art Grindle, and Dylan Renfrew-Webber had a get together on the Maine coast in August.
Amy Jane Burke has worked in the early childhood education field for the last 17 years. She has two children.
Steph Barrett was promoted to resource coordination team leader for the Maine Office of Child and Family Services, overseeing behavioral health services for children, foster care program management and the Interstate Compact for Placement of Children. Connie (Berube) Berry works with youth at risk for Maine Home Visiting Program. She has a daughter. Jenny DeFreitas expanded her apiary, with bees throughout towns south of Boston. She makes and teaches pottery. John Drost is a correctional officer for the State of Connecticut. He plans to retire in three years and become a big game hunting guide in Wyoming. Debbie Dubitsky runs a before- and afterschool program at the Glastonbury YMCA in Connecticut, and is involved in fighting childhood obesity through nutrition and physical education. Chris Dyer received an award for exemplary service at the annual Maine State Game Wardens awards banquet in April. Sasha (Ellsworth) Dyer is fish health specialist at Australis Aquaculture in Turners Falls, Mass. She visited with her roommate, Becky (Robbins) Foster ’96 in May. Sasha has a son and two daughters. Dean Floudoras is a telecommunications project manager for Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia, Wash. He and Sabrina have a fused glass shop at their house. Chris Fournier is project manager with the Division of Remediation, specializing in petroleum contamination clean-ups, for the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. He and Kristine have two sons and a daughter. Paul Levesque visited Mt. Rainier and Mt. St. Helens last year. The first ranger he met was a Unity student, Joy Kacoroski ’13. He and Kristy celebrate 20 years together. Ben Nowak owns Get-It-Done Property Maintenance in Brookline, N.H. He and Christine have been married for 11 years and have three children. Rob St. Germain and Pamela welcomed a son on September 30, 2012. Rob is a team leader at Mercer. Joe Saltalamachia was named director of admission for Unity College in August. Chris (White) Spaulding and Clint have adopted their three foster children. They also have six other children. They own a family trucking business.
Joy Braunstein welcomed a daughter in February 2013. She has a son. Joy is director of the Holocaust Center of Greater Pittsburgh. Paul Cinquegrano is an environmental analyst for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. Paula Flaherty owns a cleaning business in North Attleboro, Mass. Judi Friedman is a physician’s assistant. She has a daughter. Grey Gritzmacher is an IT analyst at Eaton Corporation in Arden, N.C. He and Wendy have been married for 10 years. Rich Imbeault, Barbara, and their two children moved to Roswell, Ga. in August. In two years they plan to return for Rich’s job as Yarmouth, Maine, harbormaster, shellfish warden, and lieutenant in the fire/rescue. Ernie Kabert is superintendent at Worthington State Forest in N.J. Beth (Jones) ’98 is environmental coordinator with the U.S.D.A. Wildlife Services in N.J. They have a daughter. Kathleen Lamb owns a private psychotherapy practice and is a grant writer for Friends in Deed in New York City. Heather (MacNeill) Falconer is scientific grant administrator at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. She and Iain have a son. Heather plans to pursue a Ph.D. in rhetoric and composition. Wayne Simmons is a concrete potter at Luna Forms in West Sullivan. He and Cathy have two children. George Speidel is a phlebotomist for Professional Health Services, Inc., traveling around the country conducting occupational health screenings on companies, corporations and government agencies. Shane Welch is an assistant research professor at Marshall University, in the field of conservation biology and landscape ecology. Char-lin Williams is an insurance agent for Insurance 24 and a Tupperware consultant. She has two daughters.
Joel Flewelling has worked as a fish and wildlife specialist for the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department for six years. He and Gwen have a daughter. Joel ran in the Corporate Cup 5K in Montpelier with Ray Webster ’98 and Rebecca (Roy) Phelps ’99. Brian Johnston is assistant district ranger in the Saco Ranger District, White Mountain National Forest. He and Anna have been married 10 years and have two children. Paul Miller is in his 12th year as a biologist at Kissimmee Prairie Preserve in Florida, working to save the Grasshopper Sparrow, one of the most endangered birds in North America. Paul and Sue were married in 2011. Jennifer (Mullen) Dickerson is a telecommunications analyst at Marsh & McLennan. She and Ted have a son and daughter. Tom O’Rourke is a New Jersey conservation officer, recently promoted to lieutenant for the Firearms Training Unit. He and Ericka have two children. Carol (Pignatere) Mosher has two sons. Howie Powell, a gamekeeper at the Maine Wildlife Park in Gray, Maine, was quoted in an article on the park in the May 2013 issue of Down East Magazine. Chuck Ransom is working on a master’s degree in sustainability management at New England College in Henniker, N.H. Todd Rinaldi was a wildlife research biologist for 15 years. He is now a biologist for Alaska Fish & Game for the Palmer Management Area that covers 12,000 square miles. He and Jennifer celebrated their sixth anniversary. Deb Shea recently passed her cancer-free five-year mark, and is running 5K races. She is a biological science technician for the U.S. Forest Service. Steve Sherman has worked 17 years for the N.H. Forests and Lands, 11 of them as a forest ranger. Jessica (Ruggles) is in her sixth year as librarian in Monroe, N.H. They have a daughter. Neal Sleeper is program director for Caribou Department of Parks and Recreation and a certified Maine Guide. In the spring of 2013, he received his 15-year pin from the National Ski Patrol. He and Gillia have two sons.
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ALUMNI CLASS NOTES Jeremy Smith owns JBS Painting Service. He and Kelly have two children. Melissa (Stakun) Mason is director of the Girl Scouts of Green and White Mountains. She works in Bedford, N.H. and Burlington, Vt. Leigh (Stansfield) Schmitt and Tyler welcomed a daughter on September 16, 2012. Leigh is a deputy fee program manager for the National Park Service at Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Mike Wisniewski owns Jigged/up Sports Fishing Charters on Cape Cod. He is engaged to Amy Sue Hoglund.
1998 Donaldson Boord is a manager/chef at the East Boothbay General Store. He has two children. Crystal (Bowden) Clarke is a stay-athome mom and Girl Scout leader. She is the Aux President of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, and takes part in historical reenactments. Jason works at Dartmouth Millworks and coaches their kids’ soccer team. They have four children. Michelle Braley is head grounds person at a private estate in Seal Harbor.
Barry Meserve is an acting sergeant for Troop E of the Maine State Police in the K-9 Unit. Kyle “Jeff” Murphy is a biologist for Brookfield Renewable Power and works on all fisheries and wildlife related issues pertaining to FERC licensed projects for the rivers and lakes of Penobscot, Kennebec, and Androscoggin counties in Maine. He and Sharon have two daughters. Kevin Oldenburg is in his 12th year as a park ranger at Roosevelt-Vanderbilt National Historical Sites in Hyde Park, N.Y. He and Jill Bennett are engaged. In June, Kevin fished with Clint Thompson, visited Jeff Cerone and his wife on Cape Cod, and spent three weeks last year fighting forest fires in Missouri with Fred Mason ’99. Kyle Rosenberg owns Forest to Shore, a tree and landscape company in Bowdoin. He is tree warden for the town of Topsham and serves on the board of directors for the Maine Arborist Association. He and Sarahjoy have three children. Deirdre Schneider is director of Shoreline Projects for the Maine DEP. She is engaged to Jeff Fredenburg, who us a GIS analyst for TRC in Augusta.
Eric Darling is an artist. He showed at the Unity College Center for the Performing Arts. He graduated from San Diego State University. He and his wife recently had a baby.
Kevin Smith taught English as a Second Language at a University in South Korea for two years. He, Boram, and their children now live in the United States where Kevin teaches ESL at the University of New Hampshire.
Chad Drew is a wilderness ranger for the U.S. Forest Service in the Sierra National Forest in California. He patrols the Ansel Adams Wilderness. He is married to Cori.
Denise Thorn is pursuing a master’s in social work at the University of New England, and working at Safe Voices, a shelter for victims of domestic violence.
Jason Fish is an oil & hazardous waste responder for the Maine DEP. He and Mandee have two sons.
Holly Wadsworth and Adam have owned Biggy’s Landscape Service in Whitefish, Mont., for nine years. They have a daughter.
Patrick Hickey is operator at the North Conway N.H. Water District. He has a daughter.
Bill Waite and Robin welcomed a second son on December 17, 2012. Bill is program director of Oswegatchie Educational Center in Croghan, N.Y.
Andy LaBonte is a deer and moose biologist for the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Wildlife Division, conducting research on fawn mortality and survival. Andy received his master’s in wildlife management from University of Connecticut in 2011. He and Kristen have been married 10 years, and have two children. Ryan LaMarre owns Computer Rescue of Maine in Fairfield. Cindy (Liszka) Dionne is manager of the Acadia Veterinary Hospital in Bar Harbor. She and Joe ’99, manager of A.C. Parsons Landscaping, celebrated their 15th anniversary. Christine (Martin) Lorentzen and Christopher were married April 17, 2011. She works part time as a nanny. She will complete her bachelors in early childhood education / psychology from Lesley College.
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1999 Cristin Bailey is a U.S. Forest Service trails manager in the Saco Ranger District in Conway, N.H. Michael Braudis is in sale/contract administration for the U.S. Forest Service at the White River National Forest in Colorado. He and Shelly have two children. Jaysen Cobb has been in the U.S. Coast Guard for 12 years, and is an instructor at their Northern Regional Fisheries Training Center in Kodiak Island, Alaska. He teaches fisheries laws and regulations to Coast Guardsmen who enforce laws in the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska. Shanin Cote is a certified athletic trainer at Maine General Medical Center and is working on her master’s in occupational therapy at the University of Southern Maine.
Korey Doyle and Cheryl welcomed a son on January 31, 2012. Ausilia Evans received her doctor of pharmacy degree in May from the University of New England. She works for Rite-Aid in western Maine. Ann Harrie received her law degree from the University of Montana in 2011 and is a public defender in Billings, Mont. Ben King works at Australis Aquaculture in Turners Falls, Mass. He and Rebecca have a son. Roy Liard is a fire and rescue lieutenant and an EMT. He and Kerry have three children. Michael Mahmood is campground coordinator for Seward, Alaska. He works part time at the Alutiiq Pride Shellfish Hatchery. Fred Mason is a National Park Service fire operations and fuel technician at Acadia National Park. He owns Birch Tree Arborist. He and Melissa have daughter Paula (McKinney) Letiecq is pursuing a master’s in education at the University of Southern Maine, and hope to teach elementary school. Brian ’00 works at Sevee and Mahar Engineers in Cumberland. Jeffrey Moody is a master corrections officer at the Cumberland County Jail and a county deputy sheriff. He and Shari have a daughter. Chris Norton is a corrections corporal with the New Hampshire Department of Corrections. He is married and has two children. Lucas Savoy and Kathleen Flanagan married on June 30, 2013. They have a daughter. Lucas is a research biologist at Biodiversity Research Institute, studying the winter and migratory movements of sea ducks along the Atlantic coast.
Ross Conover spent the summer researching Mountain White-Crowned Sparrow life histories, and teaching research training in wildlife biology at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory in Gothic, Colo. He is an assistant professor of biology at Glenville State College in Glenville, W.Va. Nate Graham has a new job working for CNH Global, a tractor manufacturer that produces Case International and New Holland equipment. He travels all over North America. In May 2013, he and Ashley had their third son. Joe Hallock and Tiffany welcomed a daughter on June 16, 2013. Joe is manager at New Earth Flooring, and owns SolarPoweredSound.com. He performs with The Flat Creek Boys and The Rain or Shine Goodtime String Band. Alexander Johnston was sworn in as a Connecticut EnCon Police Officer. He started police academy in October 2103. Paul Jones married Ashley Singer on April 13, 2013. Wally Opuszynski and Teddy Weber were both in the ceremony. Paul teaches high school biology and general and earth science, and is working towards a professional administrative license (master’s degree) at Quinnipiac University. Mike Klubek is a national park service law enforcement ranger at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, where he supervises the field training and evaluation program. He has a daughter. Sean Maggs is an electrician for UNUM where he is working on LEED certification for their buildings. Lisa (McNeil) Irwin has worked at Clean Harbors Environmental Services in Massachusetts for 13 years and is project manager / senior project scientist. Lisa and John have a daughter.
Scott Stidsen own Mossy Rock Masonry, and Sabrina (Fuchs) (‘97) works at Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. They have a son.
Nathan Purinton and Ashley welcomed a daughter on April 20, 2013. Nathan is an executive petty officer at the Fore Island Coast Guard Station in New York.
Jeff Wazenegger is a U.S. Forest Service forester in Minnesota.
Kimberly (Ross) LaMarre moved to Connecticut to be closer to family and is working as a production assistant at White Flower Farm. She has a daughter.
2000 Matt Allred and Rebecca welcomed a son in December 2011. Matt is an environmental health and safety engineer in Andover, Mass.
Greg Rotundo is a distributor for Advocare and also works at Denver International Airport. He is engaged, and has three children with a fourth one on the way.
Jeff Anthony works for the U.S. Postal Service. He, Amber, and big sister welcomed a baby girl on June 25, 2013.
Frank Sloup was promoted to sergeant in the Arizona Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office and is a member of the SWAT team.
Andrew Chapman owns Chapman Construction Company in Waldoboro. He and Vanessa have two sons.
Vince Vincitore works for Verizon Wireless. He is taking courses in business management. He and Concetta have a daughter.
Travis Collins works with Jobs for Maine Graduates in China Middle School.
CLASS NOTES ALUMNI
2001 Shannon Aldrich suffered a back injury while working as a carpenter. He is hoping to transition to a new career in photography. Dawn (Dickson) Bedenik, Greg and their five children have moved to Maine. Dawn is working on her second master’s in elementary education leadership, and looking for a principal internship. Janelle Duncan is a research assistant in the zoology department at Miami University of Ohio. Michelle Fisher is a registered nurse in the birth center at Hilo Medical Center in Hilo, Hawaii. She has a son. Kris (Hodgdon) Stern works for Stanley Security and Tom ’00 works for Schneider Tree Care. They have a daughter. Andy Jones is a cardiovascular nurse in Albuquerque, N.M. and has a daughter. Andrew Lehto owns Black Mountain Timber Frames in Bar Harbor. He and Nisa have two children. Aaron Liberty is a fisheries biologist for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. He and Katie welcomed a son on November 15, 2011. Kelly Martin and Mike Gold welcomed their son on May 10, 2013. They also have two daughters. Kelly works at Johnny’s Selected Seeds. Brian McClelen is working at Lowes as the outdoor lawn & garden manager. He and Kendra welcomed their baby on January 19, 2013. Jenn (Miller) Ryan is supervisor of the imaging sciences and phenotyping group at Jackson Lab. She and Ed have a daughter. Yolanda Mosonyi is in her last year at University of New Hampshire pursuing a master’s in dietetics. She will participate in a nine-month internship before becoming a licensed Dietitian. She and Chris Little celebrated their anniversary in December 2012. Peter Olinski is a limo driver for Red Rose Limos. Jen (Pettis) Greene has a new job as assistant manager for Liberty Resources, running a home for adults with disabilities and supervising staff. Tom ’03 runs a group home. They have a daughter. Allison Poussard is pursuing a master’s at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. She studies clinical lab sciences, and hopes to pursue work in tropical / infectious diseases. Matthew Shejen is assistant vice president at MetLife. He heads up projects for direct marketing in the U.S. and in Latin America. He and Kristen have a daughter and a son born in September 2012. Matt and his sister own Family Tree, selling beef jerky in Lincolnville.
Amber (Wade) Dent became a registered nurse 2011, and works in Lakeland, Fla. She and Robert have a son.
Burch Owens is a preschool teacher in Sonoma, Calif., and is working on her teaching certification.
Phil and Becky (Maddox) Blais welcomed a daughter on December 3, 2012. They also have a son.
2002 Mikey Alexander has moved back east from Colorado to care for his mother. He participated in the Spartan race at Killington, Vt., an obstacle obstetrical ski race.
Charlie and Nicole (Stier) Pitts welcomed a son on December 16, 2012. Nicole is a technical project coordinator for the engineering, geotechnical & energy group of Weston & Sampson. Charlie is assistant coordinator for the port of Gloucester as well as a New England Fisheries Observer.
Jason Bosco has a new position as a detective with the Maine State Police Computer Crimes Unit. He and Rebecca have two daughters.
Jamie Bragdon is in his 10th year working for Bath Iron Works. He is a damage control designer, maintaining ship drawings so that if a Navy vessel is damaged, it can be made operable.
John Roma is a police officer in Brunswick, Maine, and owns Cold Brook Guide Service, specializing in moose hunts in the Eustis/ Stratton area. John and Katie have two daughters.
Dave Clark is project manager for the Lucas Tree Experts’ Canadian operations. He has two daughters.
Lori (Beasley) DePeralta has been promoted to legal investigator in the Regulated Industries Division for the City of Kansas City, Mo. In October 2012, she and David welcomed a second son.
Jonathan Superchi married Abby Langendorfer on September 13, 2013. He is manager of the Zanesfield Rod and Gun Club in Ohio.
Greg Colligan is the wildlife biologist for the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, Oregon. He conducted wolverine research in Denali National Park and black bear den work in Colorado before he took his current job.
Brandon Vafiades is a police officer in Bangor, assigned to Maine Drug Enforcement. He and Sarah have three children.
Colleen (Gauthier) Ramsdell married Jared in 2012. She is inventory fulfillment manager for Big Mouth Toys in Glastonbury, Conn.
Matt Wagner is project manager at ReVision Energy in Liberty, Maine, installing renewable energy systems. He worked on the solar system on the Unity College TerraHaus. He and Cait have a son.
Heather (Gerken) Fox is an education tech at Troy School, and Randy ’02 is a Waldo County corrections officer and deputy. They have two sons.
Ryan Gates is farm operations manager at Aldermere Farm in Rockport where they raise Belted Galloways. He and Erica have two children. Sarah (Gorden) Koelbl and Christian married in 2012 and welcomed a son on April 15, 2013. Sarah has a stepdaughter. Sarah teaches kindergarten in Stockton Springs and owns a jewelry business, Sojourn Curiosities. Yusuke Hamada is national sales manager for the pharmaceutical division of a Danish company, Chr. Hansen Co. Ltd., a supplier of starter culture for yogurt and bacteria for human and animal health. He has a daughter. Jesse Hartson played in the alumni soccer game during Alumni Weekend in September 2013. Marcia (Lapin) Goodrich, after 10 years, no longer works as a naturalist at Up Yonda Farm. She attends an academy, taking a sixmonth course to become an environmental conservation officer. Tom Magarian is a field biologist for New Jersey Audubon. He works with SemiPalmated Sandpipers. In the last two years he has worked in Brazil, Suriname, and Delaware Bay. Deirdre (Magnan) Tomlinson is a project assistant at the National Center on Family Homelessness in Needham, Mass., where she provides on-site and web-based logistical support for the Housing and Urban Development training and technical assistance team. Jennifer (Noonan) Valles and Rodolfo welcomed a daughter on June 29, 2013. They have two sons. Jennifer is an environmental technician at Dougherty Sprague Environmental, doing data quality work for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration / National Marine Fisheries Service.
Natalie (Ward) Gould is assistant recreational director for the Eliot Community Service Department. Last summer she walked in the Susan Komen three-day Walk for a Cure and raised $2,300.
2003 Steve Aguis Steve worked for NOAA in Antarctica, investigating the effects of climate change on penguin populations, using what he learned at Unity while working on seabird conservation. When Steve Aguis started at Unity College in 1999, he knew that studying the sciences of ecology and biology would provide him entry into the field of wildlife, but he did not know how long it would take to secure a permanent position. Over 10 years, Steve worked in the Grand Canyon; in Point Reyes, California; and in Washington. He earned a master’s of zoology at University of Maine, Orono, and now works for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as Assistant Refuge Manager of Moosehorn and Aroostook National Wildlife Refuges in Maine. His work includes writing habitat management plans, monitoring biological programs and research. Reflecting on his many, varied work experiences, Steven said, “The experience will change your life, shape who you are as a person, [and] you can build on it for the rest of your life.” Alex Belote is a founding member of a new environmental non-profit called Wildland Restoration International, specializing in fire management.
Tony Cardoso and Jess Follansbee were married April 20, 2013. Tony is an attorney on Long Island, N.Y..
Rachel Haverinen-Heiss and Jon Heiss welcomed their second son on July 24, 2012. Jon is an environmental engineer for Jacobs Engineering, working on the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project, which extends the existing Washington DC metrorail to Dulles airport and beyond to Loudoun County, Va. Rachel enjoys being a stay at home mom. Josh Heath is outdoor adventure manager at The Lodge at Woodloch in Hawley, Pa. Terry Hughes received an award for meritorious service at the annual Maine State Game Wardens awards banquet in April. Reed Kennard is a work leader for the park service trail crew in Arches and Canyonlands National Parks.
Steve Agius ’03 studying climate change effects on penguins in the Antarctica at King George Island. UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
ALUMNI CLASS NOTES Vinny Marotta is a caretaker on Jewell Island in Casco Bay. In the winter he works as a carpenter and tile installer. He lives in Thorndike, Maine. Ashley Messner and her partner, David Ewald own a small scale organic farm and food processor in Belfast. They have two children. Kristie (Paresson) Woodward works for Delta Management Associates. Kristie and Shawn have two daughters. Michael Romanik is chief cardiac sonographer at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center and Nancy (Anderson) works at Zoo New England. They have a daughter. Karrie (Shue) Saltalmachia is general manager for American HomePatient. She oversees the Hermon and Lewiston branches. Josh Smith received the award as wild turkey federation conservation officer of the year at the annual Maine State Game Wardens awards banquet. Olivia “Summer” Stone is a registered nurse and Brian McGorry ’02 is a ski patroller in Alaska. They had a baby in September. Lindsay Ware and Ben Naumann ’02 married on September 8, 2012. Lindsay is a R&D specialist at Jackson Labs and Ben is a fisheries biologist for the Natural Resources Conservation Service. Joey Werner is an individual outpatient mental health therapist at Caring for Children in Asheville, N.C. Jen Whelan let us know that her husband, Shane, passed away on June 23, 2013, from complications due to organ failure. Although not an alumni, he grew up just “up the hill” and, as a teen, made friends with many Unity students, including Zoner, who invited him to many of the Jeopardy sessions. Shane was the epitome of kindness and goodness: he would help every person on
the side of the road and buy diapers for the neighbor’s child. He could make the perfect steak and make you laugh until it hurt, but you still couldn’t stop laughing. He is beyond missed by his wife, Jen Whelan, and his dog, Paug. May he be bestowed with a very divine and delicious cookie in the afterlife, just as he wished.
2004 Elizabeth Baldwin-Rowe is pursuing her Ph.D. at Indiana University. Her dissertation examines differences in the way that states make electricity resource decisions. She spent the summer studying off-grid renewable energy in Uganda. Andy Brower played in the alumni soccer game during Alumni Weekend. Heather Chappel worked as a veterinarian technician in an emergency hospital. In the fall of 2013, she will attend the University of St. Joseph College of Pharmacy in Hartford, Conn., a three-year accelerated doctor of pharmacy program. She is engaged to Mike Benjamin. Heather Dionne is city forester for Hartford, Conn. Jonathan Dumais is a park ranger for the Army Corps of Engineers at the Cape Cod Canal. He and Amanda have two children. Danielle (Dyer) Tetreau and Tom welcomed a son on July 8, 2013. Danielle is a botanist / project manager at Statec Consulting in Topsham, Maine. Ian Gereg married Michele Goodman in December 2012, with Unity grads, Chris St. Pierre ’05, Ed ’05 and Patty (Marcam) Christinat ’05, and Steve Sutton ’05 in attendance. Ian received his master’s in wildlife management from SUNY-ESF in December 2012, and is now executive director of the Livingston-Ripley Waterfowl Conservancy in Litchfield, Conn. Nova Hirsch is a behavior specialist at Ironwood, a residential therapeutic school in Morrill, Maine. Emily (Jones) MacCabe and her husband Kris were the subjects of an interview in the Camden Pilot magazine. They both work for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife. Emily is a public relations representative and Kris is a district game warden who was featured in Animal Planet’s North Woods Law. Jennie Lynn (Roy) Froment received her certificate of advanced graduate study in curriculum from New England College in May 2013. She teaches in Plaistow, N.H., and has a daughter.
Shane Whalen, husband of Jen Whalen ’03, who passed away on June 23, 2013.
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William See is a National Park Service law enforcement ranger at Zion National Park. He and Courtney Mackay, an archeologist for the park service, married in October 2013.
Jamie (Sheehy) Shackford is a fulltime police officer for the Bartlett, New Hampshire, Police Department. She has a son. Brooke (Simpson) McKay and Adam were married in October 2012. She is a Maine State park ranger at Sebago Lake State Park. Jodie Thompson is engaged to Matt and will be married in the summer of 2014. She is a teaching assistant. Ben Wurst is habitat program manager at Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey. He owns a business making objects out of reclaimed wood (www.reclaimednj.com). He and Jennifer have two children. Jason York is a U.S. Forest Service contractor working with non-native invasive plants in the Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests. He works with hemlock trees and its exotic pest, the Hemlock Woolly Adelgid.
2005 Joey Bearce and Monique welcomed a daughter on August 6, 2013. Joey is team leader for Becket Programs of Maine. Brett Bowser is a federal wildlife officer for the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service at Pond Creek National Wildlife Refuge in Arkansas. He is married to Jessica, and they are both active in the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. Colleen Corey is a lab animal technician at Charles River Labs in Charlottesville, Va. John Dumais is a fish culturist at the Casco State Fish Hatchery. Seth Dunn is a spatial data specialist at Maponics, working in product development. He married Melissa McGovern on May 4, 2013. Aubrey Gates is a partner in Gates farm in Cambridge, Vt., which has expanded to grass fed beef and a maple sugaring operation. Josh Hanna and Shana welcomed a daughter on June 20, 2013. They have a son. Josh is an agricultural resource conservationist for the Berks County Conservation District. Brian Mayhew was in Australia. He works with troubled youth as an Ed Tech at Spurwink. Jared Metz lives in Cartago, Costa Rica, with his wife Mercedes. He owns Mr. Tony’s BBQ, serving traditional Southern barbeque and plans to open several more restaurants. Scott Morrison is a CAD Detailer at Worth Co., where he has worked for six years. He and Tara have two sons. Jessica Paradis was named one of New Hampshire’s 20 most outstanding women in 2012 for her work with survivors of sexual assault and education in sexual abuse prevention. She is a school board
representative in Somersworth. She and Sean Collins have five sons. Tricia Parkinson works in the behavioral health field, and is pursuing teacher certification. Steve Sutton, a conservation officer, was selected as the New Jersey conservation officer of the year in 2012. He was presented with an award from the Northeast Conservation Law Enforcement Chiefs Association, as well as an award from Shikar Safari International.
2006 Greg Beck is manager of Willamette Landscape Services in Portland, Oregon. Stacie (Powell) is finishing up a dual master’s degree at Portland State University. Noah Bourassa works for Granite State Automation in Manchester, N.H. He and Ariana have a daughter. CeCe Bowerman is development assistant at PCC Farmland Trust in Seattle, Wash. Mike Bradford is a corrections officer at the Ontario County Jail in New York. Ashley (Ackroyd-Kelly) ‘07 is a professional riding instructor at their farm. Lindsey Cook owns Lindsey J. Cook Ecological Land Care, a sustainable garden design installation and maintenance business. She visited CeCe Bowerman in Seattle in May, and spent three months in Hawaii with Casey Coe, meeting up with Christian Durfee ’05 and Nate Tsao ’05 while there. Tricia Cycz is a fish culturist for the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife & Parks at Kalispell, Mont, where she helps raise Kokanee Salmon and West Slope Cutthroat. Callie (Davis) Merritt is a pharmacy technician at a Costco in Kalispell, Mont. Lance Ebel is in his fourth year with his Newleaf Environmental business. He manages a few thousand acres in the northeast, writes and implements forest ecosystems and wildlife management plans. Mike Fournier is a recreational therapist at the Maine State Prison in Warren. Marcus Gray and Jess welcomed a daughter on June 23, 2012. He is assistant director of Admissions at Unity College. Jayme Haverly is a baker in Highland Farm in Narragansett, R.I. She is pursuing a master’s in teaching culinary arts from Johnson Wales. In 2012 she studied culinary arts in Singapore and Thailand. Rick Kristoff is an environmental scientist for the Army Corps of Engineers in Concord, Mass. Hana Poulin is barn manager at Windsock Farm in New Gloucester.
CLASS NOTES ALUMNI Morgan Reed guides river trips for American River Recreation in Coloma, Calif. Last winter she backpacked around Australia. Dan Rinell is on a vessel boarding security team in the Coast Guard, checking container ships. He and Katelyn Asbill are engaged. Erika (Roderick) Verrier and Jay welcomed a daughter on in December 2012. Erika is manager of integrated pest management at Backyard Farms in Madison. Matt Wyman is a Maine marine patrol officer. He and Danielle have two daughters. Ian Yates is branch manager at Scott’s Lawn Service in Portland.
2007 Matt Belonick is a carpenter for Mohawk Northeast in Terryville, Conn. He played in the alumni soccer game at Alumni Weekend. Mike Bjork is a consulting utility forester for ACRT Inc. and Nstar Electric. He and Lauren have twins born on October 5, 2013. Sara Blocker is an environmental specialist for the Oklahoma Water Resources Board in Oklahoma City, Okla. She collects water and habitat samples in rivers and streams to assess water quality. Phil Catanese is a field teacher at the 4-H Camp and Learning Center at Bryant Pond,. He is engaged and will marry in May 2014. Melissa Coppa is a job specialist for Jobs for Maine Graduates. She plans a mission trip to Uganda in June. Alison Correia is client liaison at Cape Cod Veterinary Specialists. Keith Crowley is director of Chewonki’s Traveling Natural History Program in Wiscasset. Bruce Currie is a licensed boiler/waste treatment operator for Tate and Lyle in Houlton. He and Katherine Cole were married September 1, 2012. David Curtiss finished grad school at Nicholls State University. He is a base wildlife biologist for the birdstrike control program at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. Ryan Howes is a climbing guide for Synnott Mountain Guides. Nick and Meredith (Kellogg) Josselyn welcomed a daughter on April 5, 2013. Nick is a biologist for Clearwater Labs in Newport and Meredith is education & outreach coordinator for the Maine Wolf Coalition. Jeremy and Kelly Beth (Safford ‘10) Lavertu welcomed a daughter on July 15, 2013. Jeremy is a part time Supervisor for United Postal Service and owns a carpentry business. Kelly Beth is lead teacher at Winfield Children’s House, a Montessori school.
Renee (Letendre) Grant is an administrative assistant in the student life office at the University of Maine / Augusta. She is a member of the Maine Quality Counts Consumer Advisory Council.
Chris and Nicole (French ‘07) McGrath welcomed a daughter on November 16, 2011. Chris is a fish culturist for New Hampshire Fish and Game. Nicole Monkiewicz is the executive director of W.I.L.D. Center and Zoological Park of New England in Rochester, N.H.
Jayson Lucarelli owns Maine Whitetail Adventures in West Forks, is a ski patroller at Sugarloaf, a whitewater raft guide for Northern Outdoor, and a fisheries observer of East West Technical Services.
Clayton Norwood is training to be a fire controlman (ship’s weapon system specialist) in the Navy.
Joe Martignetti and his band, Sunrunner, are producing their second CD. Joe is a stone mason.
Jeremy Pelletier works for the Department of Defense processing new recruits into the military. He and Jamie have a daughter.
Phil and Patty (Madden) Mascia made an educational video series called Fish Geekery. They live Missoula, Mont.
Lili and Nettie, daughters of Will Hafford ’08 and Eileen McCue.
Keith Murphy is production director at 102.3, The Dunes Radio in Cape Cod.
Will Hafford and Eileen welcomed a second daughter on August 24. Will is assistant professor of adventure therapy at Unity.
Peter Newcomb is a dairy buyer at Whole Foods Market in Providence, R.I. Nicole Vinci is a flower designer for a floral shop. She has started two new businesses. Whiskmeup is a custom baking business. She teaches hula hooping classes in Philadelphia. Mike Kalkstein runs an after school program. He is working on his teacher certification. Allison Wilson is head technician, animal nurse at Helping Hands Animal Hospital in Salisbury, Md. She and Brandon will marry in 2014. Linda Wyler is finishing up her master’s in school counseling at the University of the Southwest. She instructs for Outward Bound, and sells antiques and crafts at a local antique shop.
2008 Tori Arnold teaches elementary school science at the Banner School in Frederick, Md., where she started a school garden and a leadership program. She and Tom Frezza married on October 19, 2013.
Kayla Higgins is working on a doctorate in education at North Central University and expects to graduate in December 2015. She has two sons and a stepdaughter. Brittany Jenkins worked for Outward Bound Australia until January 2013. She then worked for Alaska Crossings, a wilderness therapy program for Alaskan youth. Julie Ladd is a National Park Service law enforcement ranger at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. She attended the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center and will return this summer to finish the course. She is pursuing her master’s in criminal justice and forensic science and will complete it in 2014. Audrey Laffely is working at Scott’s Lawn Service in Hermon. She volunteers with the Maine Appalachian Trail Club. She and Scott bought a house. Clayton Kern just received his master’s in marine and environmental biology from Nicholls State University.
Liz Pierson received her master’s in experiential education from Minnesota State University / Mankato in 2012. She worked seasonally as a teacher / naturalist for the National Audubon Society in Santa Fe. Gerry Pound plans to work on forestry and forestry biology, ecology and entomology at the Maritime College of Forest Technology in 2014. Krystal Reddy is a utility forester for Davey Tree Company, and fights wild fires. Nick Shown works at Left Coast Cellars Vineyard and Winery in Junction City, Oregon. He plans to study vineyard management. Nick Stamates is a Camping Program Specialist for the Chicago Park District, responsible for three camps that run 1-2 weeks for six weeks each. Most of the campers are first-timers. Nick’s wife Melissa is doing her Residency in Neurosurgery at the University of Chicago Hospital. Isabel Streichahn-Demers is an acupuncturist and owns Natural Entities Family Acupuncture in Dover, N.H. and York. She and Tyson Demers ’06, an assistant brewer at the Portsmouth Brewery, were married in 2006.
Shawn and Heather (Swieneicki) Brassard both have new jobs. Heather works at Rynell, Inc. in Wiscasset, and Shawn works security at Parkview Hospital in Brunswick. Sam (Chisholm) Fleming is a federal game warden and working on her master’s in criminal justice at Boston University. Andrew works at an environmental consulting company dealing with contaminants. Timothy Cook is a National Park Service seasonal park ranger and medic at Yellowstone National Park, and an EMT in Oakland, N.J. Will Davis is a Pennsylvania state trooper. He has just bought and renovated a house in Milton, Penn. Alex Johnson ’08 on left displays his badge, while Colonel Kyle Overturf (right) looks on as Alex is presented his certificate. UNITY MAGAZINE SPRING 2014 |
ALUMNI CLASS NOTES youth in Madagascar. Her research earned her a Tropical Habitat Conservation BTEC Certificate from the London Examinations Board/Edexcel Foundation.
Derek Patry is a forester and land surveyor with York Land Services in Berlin, N.H. He and Alicia Harriman will marry next June. They have a daughter.
Justin Blouin is regional director for New England and Atlantic Canada of the National Wild Turkey Federation. He and Chelsea married in 2011 and welcomed a daughter on April 25, 2012.
Amanda Walker lives in Hadley, Mass., and works as a seasonal park ranger for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, coordinating visitor travel throughout the Connecticut River Watershed. She is pursuing an online graduate course from Green Mountain College.
Rebecca Peplau is a doctor liaison for Pieper Memorial Veterinary Center in Middletown, Conn.
Aaron Cross received an award for exemplary service at the annual Maine State Game Wardens awards banquet in April.
Nate Williams and Sarah welcomed a daughter on April 24, 2013. Nate is an Army National Guard recruiter for central Maine.
Jeremy Watts is assistant brewer at Carton Brewery in Atlantic Highlands, N.J. Luke Wroblewski owns an English academy in El Penol, Columbia. He has two sons.
Jameson Cycz is a mountain office manager for Timberline Mountain Guides in Bend, Oregon.
Mickey DiPesa coordinates trials for Smith Gardens in Bellingham, Wash.
Erin Balcom is a ski instructor at Pat’s Peak Ski Area in Henniker, N.H., in the winter and trek leader / canoe instructor at their nature’s Classroom at the Sargent Center Adventure Camp in Hancock, N.H., in the summer.
Eric Fluette is a conservation officer with New Hampshire Fish & Game Department. He attended the retirement party for Chris Schoppmeyer ’77 in September 2013.
Josh Beuth is finishing his master’s in environmental science at the University of Rhode Island studying the winter habitat use movements of the Common Eider Duck.
Jake Harr and Adrienne Patenaude are in Montrose, Colo., sailing on the many lakes. Adrienne is construction manager and Jake volunteers for Habitat for Humanity.
Jonathan Cooper conquered Mt. Washington. He passed an operational leadership course and will be attending the National Park Service Fundamentals at the Grand Canyon in March 2014.
Ryan Dinsmore played in the alumni soccer game during Alumni weekend.
Kelley Higgins is working as a deli clerk at Super Stop and Shop in Torrington, Conn. She hopes to take an art course at Connecticut Academy of the Arts.
Jess Curtis is primary keeper of six jaguars and two giant otters in the Range of the Jaguar at the Jacksonville Zoo in Florida.
Nathaniel Jack is a Knox County deputy sheriff, a DARE officer, and a field training officer. He was 2012 Deputy of the Year for the Knox County Sheriff’s Office. He and Lindsay Certain ’12 are engaged.
Joe Horn recently finished working as a field technician on the Megaplot Project in Harvard Forest. He worked on his wilderness first responder training through SOLO schools in Concord N.H.
Julie Kozak was a Peace Corps volunteer in the Dominican Republic. She married in June, and is pursuing her master’s at Antioch New England.
John Mahoney is working at Next Step Living, a home energy audit and weatherization company in Fall River, Mass. Felicia (Medeiros) is searching for a position.
Jennifer Lane created and ran a sailing camp for kids in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Richard Russ is a wildlife control officer for the Rhode Island environmental police. Ian Saylor is a custodian at Bellefonte Area Middle School in Pennsylvania. Nathaniel Swasey is a raft guide and manager of the Penobscot outpost for North Country Rivers. Jill Travisano is a Veterinary Tech at the NorthStar VETS in Robbinsville, N.J., an emergency and specialty animal hospital. She is sitting for her national veterinary technician boards in August to become a certified veterinary technician. Zoe Turcotte is a middle school science teacher on Martha’s Vineyard. This summer she spent five weeks in Madagascar, conducting wildlife research and planning environmental awareness days for village
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Lauren Mazurkiewicz is a surgical assistant in the breast cancer clinic at Massachusetts General Hospital. She signed a contract with a plus size modeling agency. Ashley McCorkindale ’10 is a grower at Cascade Cuts greenhouses in Bellingham, Wash. and is working as a temporary whitewater rafting guide on the Nooksack River. She rooms with Unity alumni Joy Sheehan ’11, Mike Paulsen, and Zachary Klabe ’12. Jason MacLeod is a deputy with the New Hampshire sheriff’s department in Rockingham County. Before going to New Hampshire, he worked as a security officer at Southern Maine Medical Center in Portland. Gregory Morrison is a corrections officer for the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Department.
Ryan Rochelle is a county park manager for Monmouth County Park System in New Jersy. Steve Swartz is on a six-month internship with Yestermorrow Design / Build School in Warren, Vt. The school focuses on sustainable design and building practices, and fine woodworking. Derek Wilson played in the alumni soccer game during Alumni Weekend.
working in a mobile vaccine clinic for dogs and cats. Tim Dorsey teaches wilderness medicine for the Wilderness Medicine Institute of NOLS in Sandpoint, Idaho. He and Leslie Van Niel are engaged. Leslie is the citizen science coordinator for Idaho Fish and Game. Lauren Driscoll teaches biology and ecology at Hermon High School in Hermon, Maine. Rory Dwyer is a zookeeper at Zoo New England in Boston. He is the koala keeper. Chris Everett worked as an environmental intern at Stantec Consulting and has a seasonal job with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection.
Matty Zane is head climbing instructor and assistant routesetter at the Rock Spot Climbing Gym. He lives in Boston. Last winter he went on an extended climbing trip in Southeast Asia. He played on the alumni soccer team Alumni Weekend.
Ryan Falkenham is assistant harbormaster in Hyannis, Mass.
Nate Jillson is on the field staff of Second Nature Wilderness Program and is a wild land fire fighter for the Bureau of Land Management in Moab, Utah.
Jean Altomare is office manager at a 350.org. She is working on her master’s in natural science and environmental education. Lucas Benner teaches chemistry, biology and environmental science at Oceanside High School in Rockland. He won the Village Soup Newspaper “Best Teacher in Knox County” award, for a student program to complete energy audits of the school buildings in their district. Bob Bentley is program director at YMCA Speers-Eljabar summer camp in Pennsylvania. James Benvenuti and Bri (Rudinsky) ’12 were married in September. Jim is a New Hampshire conservation officer working out of Durham, covering the seacoast area. Bri is a naturalist at the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge in Wells. This summer she led the bat and roseate tern surveys. They both attended the retirement party for Chris Schoppmeyer ’77 in September. Kayla Bubar received a master’s in sustainable design from Boston Architectural College in May. She is engaged to Jeff Vigue. Meredith Collins is a park ranger for New Hampshire State Parks and is manager at Silver Lake State Park. She was featured in two articles in New Hampshire. Justin Cupka has been working as a veterinarian assistant at an animal hospital in Richmond, Va. In July he moved to California to pursue a master’s at the University of California / Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Cheryl Rae Curtis graduated in December with a veterinary technology degree. She is
Derek Jacobs and his wife Kelsea attended the retirement party for Chris Schoppmeyer ’77 in September. Derek is a Maine marine patrol officer.
William Knight is a corrections officer at Federal Corrections Institution in Berlin, N.H. He is pursuing an online master’s in criminology from Missouri State University. Nick Kopyscinski is working in the greenhouses at the University of Connecticut. Cody Lounder is a full time police officer for the Scarborough Police Department. He and Rachel Stuart married on June 29, 2013. Braden Moore is a fisheries observer for TechSea International on the Bering Sea. He is on his fifth fishing vessel collecting data, weighing otoliths, sexing, and identifying fish. Nate Morris is a fulltime animal keeper at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. He trains domestic and exotic animals for shows and film for Birds & Animals Unlimited. Nichole Myers is a quality control lab tech for a chemical company, AFCO. She has a son. Jonathan Neary is a park attendant for the County Department of Parks, and also election district leader / strategist / webmaster for the town Republican Committee. Amanda Nelson is an Army intelligence analyst at Fort Bragg, N.C. She is pursuing a master’s in intelligence studies. Jamie Nemecek is a paralegal for a law firm in Manchester, N.H., and is pursuing a master’s of education at Rivier University for social studies in secondary studies.
CLASS NOTES ALUMNI Mike Paulsen is a Washington State park ranger at Cape Disappointment. Alison Renaud is working for the Ohio State University Terrestrial Ecology Lab monitoring birds in metro parks for the Columbus Riparian Project. She monitors Northern Cardinals, Acadian Flycatchers, wood thrush and gray catbirds. Cayce Salvino is a graduate research assistant at the University of Maine where she is pursuing a master’s in forest soils. Erin Schoppmeyer is a national park ranger at Statue of Liberty / Ellis Island. Joy Sheehan is working as a transplanter at Cascade Cuts greenhouses in Bellingham, Wash. Ashley McCorkindale ’10 is also working there and is working as a temporary whitewater rafting guide on the Nooksack River. Joy rooms with Ashley, Mike Paulsen and Zachary Klabe ’12. Joy Sheehan works seasonally as a youth counselor for Princess Cruises and volunteers with Conservation Canines researching orca whale scat. Amanda Smith works at the University of Florida small animal hospital in Gainesville.
Balloons Blow, a non-profit, with her sister to stop deadly balloon releases. They gave presentations on the detrimental impact of balloons at the Biggest Week in American Birding in Ohio and at the Bonfire Heights, an environmental conference in California.
Megan Mallory is working as an Ed Tech. III in special education at an expeditionary learning school in Portland. She teaches 23 second graders in hands-on science labs in a comprehensive after school program called LearningWorks.
Zane Wallace is park manager at Eagle Island State Historic Site, the summer home of Admiral Robert E. Peary in Casco Bay. He is a carpenter during the off-season.
Patricia “Ashe” Preston is a retail associate at Four Your Paws Only, a pet supply store / doggie bakery in North Conway, N.H.
Kelly Swart is a seasonal recreational fisheries technician for the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries.
Lara Bicko has a summer position as Park Ranger for the Army Corps of Engineers at the Youghiogheny River Lake in Confluence Penn. Arianna (Leach) Gabrion married Sophie on December 29, 2012. Ari is bioassay coordinator at Lotic Inc. in Unity and is working on her Maine teaching certificate to teach high school biology. Abby Nourse Van Meter is working in environmental education for the Appalachian Mountain Club in Pinkham Notch, N.H. Jessica Snow has a seasonal position with the Maine Department of Marine Resources conducting biotoxin red tide research. Alison Zukas started hiking the Appalachian Trail on March 12, 2013 and completed her journey on August 22, 2013.
2013 Clover Street ’11 with his fiancé Stephanie Huppert. Clover Street is engaged to Army first lieutenant Stephanie Huppert. Clover is a veterinary assistant. He is qualifying with their Great Dane to become a K9 Unit for the Texas search and rescue. He is an event coordinator for the Retired Military Working Dog Assistance Organization. Abie Sullivan earned her master’s in resource economics and policy from the University of Maine in May. She is pursuing her doctorate at Arizona State University.
Cassandra Alston is working as an AmeriCorps for the Great Basin Institute in Elko, Nev., taking soil and vegetation samples to determine if sage grouse are a threatened species. Marsha Barnes is working on a farm and in a library while studying to take her GRE’s later this year for admittance to graduate school next year. Elizabeth Caporelli teaches environmental education in Ohio. Elizabeth Fonseca works as service leader at Hannafords. She hopes to move to Florida to work with animals. Celesse Gaudreau was a gamekeeper at the Maine Wildlife Park for the third straight summer season. Cody Jackman was a police officer at Old Orchard Beach this summer. He is interviewing for game warden positions.
Chelsea Vosburgh ’11 holding wolf pups. Chelsea Vosburg is in Arizona interning at the Mexican Wolf Recovery Program with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. She runs
Joy Kacoroski was awarded one of only three undergraduate scholarship awards from the National Association for Interpretation, a professional association for those involved in the natural and cultural heritage field. She attended the National Workshop in Reno, Nevada in fall 2013. Emily Lapresi is an adoption and admissions counselor for the Humane Society of Greater Rochester at Lollypop Farm.
Cassandra Thayer is a pet resort attendant at VCA Animal Hospitals in Plymouth, Mass. Cameron Thompson is an army combat medic in Korea. He hopes to take a flight medic course. Courtney Tway is an Ed Tech III in a K-4 life skills program. Shayne Van Leer is a food security volunteer for the Peace Corps and left in September for Nepal. He is working to improve the lives of farmers through organic farming techniques for sustainable crop production. Eli Walker is working full time as a research technician for the Cheetah Conservation Fund in Namibia. To follow Eli’s work, see his blog at ehwalker91. wordpress.com. Alexis White is in graduate school at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va. working on her doctorate in ecological sciences, with a focus on modeling and simulation.
ALUMNI DEATHS Jeanine (Bishof) Ann ’93 of Thorndike died in an automobile accident on March 21, 2013. Shawn Biello ’93 passed away on April 30, 2013. She lived on Florida and was much beloved by her three children. Tom Fitzgerald ’79 of Fairfield died September 21, 2013. He was Vice President of D.L. Thurrott in Waterville. He is survived by Cheryl (Chatterton) Fitzgerald ’79 two daughters and two grandchildren. Carol (Pignatare) Mosher ’97 passed away on November 9, 2013. She lived in Maine for many years and was an avid animal lover. She is survived by many family members including two sons. William (Bill) Urquhart ’97 of Wayne died of lung cancer on July 24, 2013. He was an entomologist for the Maine Department of Fisheries and Wildlife and later for the Maine Forest Service. He is survived by his wife Kathy, two sons, and grandchildren. Maureen Winters ’85 of Grantham, N.H. died of cancer on August 18, 2013. She was Vice President of Hydropower Developer in Bedford, N.H. She was active in alumni relations.
Charles Scott Wingfield ’79 passed away at his home in New Sharon, Maine, on January 4, 2013.
NEWS OF FORMER FACULTY AND STAFF Ed Beals, Professor Emeritus of botany & ecology at Unity (1992-2003), has for the past few years been an adjunct professor of biology at George Fox University in Newberg, Oregon. Now in his 80th year and after a stroke in April, he has given up teaching, but still gives lectures to students and adults. Former Unity students, feel free to touch base at firstname.lastname@example.org. Ed Raiola is in his final year as outdoor recreation department head at Warren Wilson College in Asheville, N.C. He will join Susan in northwestern Massachusetts where she already has a job. Libbey Seigars reopened her pottery studio, Whitefield Pottery, two years ago, and loves being a potter again.
Audrey (Lesko) White, who worked in the Unity book store and other offices over the years, died May 18, 2013. She had been an editor at Thorndike Press and at Thomas Beeler Publishing. Audrey was married to Gary White ’84, and had two children, Sara and Jonah Lesko. John McCarty, Professor Emeritus (1928-2013), died on October 31, 2013. Dr. McCarty began his service to Unity College in the fall of 1991 where he taught Chemistry, Physics, and Music Appreciation, for eight years. During his tenure here, he designed the new wing which housed the chemistry and computer science laboratories. He was appointed Faculty Marshal, leading the procession at the Unity College 1999 graduation, after which he retired. Lois Ongley, a gifted educator who sought to empower each of her students to achieve their very best, died on November 16, 2013. Lois was deeply committed to her students and the entire College community. As a longstanding member of Chemists Without Borders, a global network of individuals who work to alleviate problems in the third world, she was recognized for contributions to that organization in 2011. Georgie Rines, who worked in the cafeteria for over 20 years, died August 24, 2013, at the age of 90. She went on Deb Sugermen’s “Women Over Thirty” canoe trip in northern Maine. She is survived by two daughters, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.
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JUST ADD WATER The Other Bear Study By Martha Nordstrom Unity grads tend to be resourceful, frugal and pragmatic. How do they get there in the first place? They study under professors such as Emma Creaser. When Emma completed her Ph.D. — her dissertation was on the physiology of starfish — she had a dilemma. She could follow her brain and continue work and research in her field requiring very high-tech research equipment, all the bells and whistles available at major universities. Or she could follow her heart and work in a small, close-knit community of learning where she had a chance of making a difference in the lives of her students. Choosing one meant abandoning the other. She chose her heart and came to Unity. The transition wasn’t easy. She missed the practice of science at its frontiers where improved technology offers brand new opportunities every couple of years. And then Emma discovered tardigrades. Tardigrades — also called water bears because of their lumbering gait — have been around for 600 million years but relatively little is known about them. These microscopic moss dwellers are survivors, they can exist under conditions that would kill even the most intrepid rat or cockroach. You can heat them, freeze them, expose them to radiation or dry them out and they go into a dormant state called cryptobiosis where their metabolisms come to a virtual standstill. Rehydrate and they’re good to go. According to Emma, no one has yet figured out how long they can live. Tardigrade detectives have found some dried up old moss samples in forgotten laboratories from the century before last. Add a little water and the tardigrades wake up and start lumbering about as if no time had passed at all. For all of their interesting characteristics, only about 28 scientists worldwide are studying them. There is still so much to learn about these little bears. Because so much is already known about most large animals, cutting edge research calls for expensive equipment and sophisticated computer modeling out of the reach of all but wellfunded grad and post graduate students. Not so with the humble tardigrades. Tardigrades tuck in anywhere. Students can collect them in moss samples using a paper bag for transport. If the paper bag gets forgotten for a couple of weeks, no problem. A little water and they’re back in business. As tiny as they are (.039 of an inch on average) they’re big enough to be seen using a low-power microscope. It presents an exciting frontier for Emma and her students. Unity students have already discovered a new species — a heady experience for any undergraduate. But more important, with tardigrades as their subject, Emma’s students are engaged in fundamental scientific research — looking, measuring, sorting, codifying and discovering. This is the real work that underlies all scientific endeavor.
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