Class Notes



  • 1960s

    Kenson Siver, SEHS ’67

    mayor of Southfield, Michigan, and Delores Flagg, SEHS ’03, chair of the Southfield Public Arts Commission, unveiled “The Boy and Bear” at its new home in the Southfield Public Library. Fundraising kept the sculpture and a collection of iconic pieces from being auctioned after their location at the Northland Center, a local mall, was closed and scheduled for demolition.

    1970s

    Heidi Appel, BGS ’79

    a chemical ecologist working as senior associate director of the University of Missouri Honors College, accepted a position as dean of the University of Toledo Jesup Scott Honors College.


    Marina Dutzmann Kirsch, CAS ’74

    has been traveling throughout the U.S. as she presents on her finalist-award-winning piece, “Flight of Remembrance: A World War II Memoir of Love and Survival.” She is president of the Exeter Speak-Ups chapter of Toastmasters International and will serve as Area 10 director for 2016-17.


    Jayne Houdyshell, ADA ’74

    won a Tony Award for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play” as Dierdre Blake in the play “The Humans.” Along with her nominations, Houdyshell has also won two Drama Desk Awards and a Theatre World Award.


    Mary (Bjurman) Rossmaessler, SEHS ’78

    and her husband, Lee, were honored on May 14 with the Lifetime Achievement Award from Lake Fenton Community Schools Foundation. The couple, who have a long history of leadership and volunteer involvement with the district, has spent the majority of their professional careers as educators. They have served on committees for Project Graduation, prom, youth football and other building and district activities. Lee worked the football scoreboard for six years, judged science fairs and helped pass bond issues. The couple also hosted three foreign exchange students, were grand marshals for a homecoming parade and are members of the Lake Fenton School Volunteer Hall of Fame.

    1980s

    Scott Bittinger, SBA ’88

    was inducted into the Toledo City Hall of Honor for his accomplishments as a high school basketball player. His school won the state championship his junior year. The city also recognized Bittinger for accolades after high school. He was Men’s Head Basketball Coach Greg Kampe’s first recruit, set several OU basketball records and was named an All-American, among many honors.


    Rob Dutkiewicz, SBA ’88

    was named president of Clayon & McKervey, a global tax and accounting firm in Southfield, Michigan. Dutkiewicz, an active member of the OU Accounting and Finance Advisory Board, also received the Meritorious Service Award from the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG). He has been president and vice president of programs for the ACG Detroit chapter.


    M.L. Liebler, CAS ’80, ’76

    was featured in the Detroit Free Press discussing his latest book, “I Want to Be Once,” published in April 2016. Liebler is co-editor of “Bob Seger’s House and Other Stories,” a collection of short stories by Michigan authors, and editor of “Heaven Was Detroit,” an anthology of writing about Detroit music. It is set for late 2016 release.


    Lynn Perenic, SEHS ’85

    and her husband, Fred Perenic, are listed among 34 finalists in the 30th annual Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year awards for 2016. The Perenics are both president and CEO of The Argent Group, a manufacturer of tape and custom-printed adhesive media and industrial tape products.


    Tom Stanton, CAS ’82

    saw his seventh nonfiction book, “Terror in the City of Champions,” published on June 1 by Lyons Press. The book, set in 1930s Detroit, tells the entwined stories of the Detroit Tigers, Joe Louis, and the Black Legion terrorist group. His book tour stops have included New York, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and Detroit.


    Anthony Vitale, SECS ’89

    was named an associate in the technology services group at Plante Moran, the nation’s 14th largest certified public accounting and business advisory firm.


    Joyce (Jackson) Weishaar, SBA ’82

    director of Human Resources and Executive Leadership team member of AVL North America, was appointed to a three-year term as a trustee on the Society of Automotive Engineers Foundation. Weishaar spent the last 18 of 30 years in human resources directly focused on the automotive sector, with a strong background in international human resources and global mobility. She completed an executive leadership program from American International Management and several certifications in human resources through the College for Creative Studies.

  • 1990s

    Kathleen Abke, SEHS ’94; ’89

    has been appointed to the Grosse Pointe Public School System Board of Education.


    Edward Cary, BGS ’91

    was named acting fire chief for the City of Southfield Fire Department. He joined the department in 1993 as a probationary firefighter.


    Paul Cavazos, SBA ’91

    was named chief investment officer and senior vice president of American Beacon Advisors, Inc., a financial advising company in Irving, Texas. He oversees corporate pension plan investments and the investment subadvisors to the American Beacon Funds. His comprehensive background includes leading defined-benefit plans of varying sizes, conducting investment manager searches, due diligence and riskcontrol oversight. Cavazos had been chief investment officer and assistant treasurer at DTE Energy in Detroit, where he developed asset allocation strategies and fiduciary oversight for $10 billion in retirement trust assets. His experience also includes chief investment officer at Navistar and investment and finance roles at The Boeing Company and Chrysler Corporation. Cavazos earned a Bachelor of Science in Finance from OU and holds an MBA in finance from The University of Texas at Austin.


    Mark Harden, Ph.D., BGS ’91

    was named president of Ashland Theological Seminary, in Ashland, Ohio. He was most recently at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Roxbury, Massachusetts as dean and associate professor of community development and outreach at the Boston campus. Between 1983 and 2012, Dr. Harden was an associate minister at Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church, Greater Christ Baptist Church and St. James Missionary Baptist Church. His community work includes being founder and interim executive director of Detroit LOVE INC.; regional program coordinator for World Vision USFO Headquarters in Federal Way, Washington; and program coordinator for Church-Based Community Development in Detroit. Dr. Harden has received numerous awards for his community work, including the Spirit of Detroit Award; Best Model Project in Michigan for Youth Mentoring and Prevention; and the Benjamin E. Mays Male Academy Task Force Award for an initiative for African American males, among others. In addition to his OU Bachelor of General Studies, Dr. Harden holds Master of Arts degrees in theological studies from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary in Lombard, Illinois and in pastoral ministry from Detroit’s Marygrove College. His doctoral degree is in family and child ecology from Michigan State University. Dr. Harden has attended the Harvard Summer Institute management development program, the Fundraising School at the Center of Philanthropy at Indiana University and Intercultural Communication Institute certification training in West Slope, Oregon.


    Ellen Peck, Ph.D., CAS ’95

    a theatre historian and practitioner, has been named a Fulbright Scholar by the U.S. Department of State. Dr. Peck, an assistant professor of drama at Alabama’s Jacksonville State University, will spend the 2016-2017 academic year teaching classes in musical theatre and American theatre history at Alexandru Ioan Cuza University in Romania. Dr. Peck earned a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from OU and worked as a freelance stage manager at several prestigious theatres and opera companies around the country, including Michigan Opera Theatre, Goodspeed Musicals, Spoleto USA, and Utah Opera. Dr. Peck recently published an essay on lyricist-librettists Anne Caldwell, Dorothy Donnelly and Rida Johnson Young in Paul Fryer’s “Women in the Arts in the Belle Epoque: Essays on Influential Artists, Writers and Performers.” She is working on a biography of Rida Johnson Young. Dr. Peck holds Master of Arts and doctoral degrees in theatre history from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


    Mark Robelli, CAS ’97

    of Clinton Township, Michigan, invented a new patent-pending product called Shoe Buddy, designed to help with organization and storage. During the prototype stage, he asked students in OU residence halls if they would use it and they told Robelli they loved it. ABC has asked, but not yet committed, to feature the Shoe Buddy on “Shark Tank.” shoebuddyusa.com


    Linda Rosati, SBA ’99

    was promoted to chief operating officer of Coe Press Equipment, where she has worked since 2014. Previously, Rosati was with Ingersoll-Rand and Heller Machine Tools for six years in a manager contract administration position.


    Kousay Said, SBA ’95

    was named president and chief executive officer of GreenMantra Technologies in Brantford, Ontario, Canada, in April 2016. His previous position was at Sirrus, Inc., where he served as chief commercial officer. Said’s career includes 18 years as a senior executive at Dow Chemical Company.

  • 2000s

    Nancy Cool, SEHS ’07

    was honored with an Excellence in Education award from the Michigan Lottery. Cool, a teacher at the Pine Grove Learning Center in Grand Rapids, works with students from ages 5 to 14 with Autism Spectrum Disorder. She participates in a school-wide Positive Behavior Intervention and Support program, mentors new teachers through the district’s mentoring program and inspires other teachers with her creativity and enthusiasm. She received a plaque, $500 cash, and a $500 grant to her classroom, school or school district.


    Adam Hartley, SEHS ’04

    is serving as Fenton, Michigan’s, new permanent superintendent. Hartley was chosen from among 27 applicants and began his duties on July 1. Previously, he served as executive director of the leadership development organization GEARup2LEAD.


    David McGhee, CAS ’05

    was selected as a 2016 Next City Vanguard at the NextCity Vanguard Conference. The conference brings together the top urban innovators, 40 and younger, who work to bring change and a positive influence in their cities.


    Allen Mitchell, SBA ’03

    has joined Genisys Credit Union as a business lending officer for small and medium- sized businesses in southeast Michigan. Mitchell, who has a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from OU, has worked in the commercial lending industry for 10 years.


    Tad Roumayah, CAS ’07

    was elevated from associate to shareholder by Sommers Schwartz, P.C., a law firm that represents individuals in Michigan and across the U.S. Roumayah has also been named to the list of Super Lawyers Rising Stars in Michigan, and recognized by the U.S. District Court for his pro bono service and contributions.


    Dr. Jovana (Koscica) Spreitzer, CAS ’04

    recently joined Women’s Excellence, focusing on minimally invasive surgery. Her personal interests include her family and being an avid dog aficionado.


    June Teisan, SEHS ’04

    an educator for 27 years who retired from Harper Woods, Michigan, Secondary School, was inducted into the 2016 National Teachers Hall of Fame in Emporia, Kansas, on June 9. She also went to the White House on May 3 for a ceremony with the National Teacher of the Year Program. Teisan was Michigan’s Teacher of the Year in 2008 and a 2008 finalist for National Teacher of the Year. She works in Washington, D.C., at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Originally founded in 1989 by Emporia State University, the Hall of Fame recognizes honors teachers through a recognition ceremony, a gallery of previous honorees, a Wall of Fame, a museum and resource center that tell the “story” of education through antique textbooks, teacher contracts and other artifacts.


    Michael Womack, J.D., CAS ’03

    anticipates the opportunity to contribute to the Cedar Springs, Michigan, community, following his August 1 appointment to city manager by the city council. He had been an attorney at Womack & Womack P.C., in Shelby Township, Michigan; an executive intern for the Village of Lake Orion; and a graduate assistant in the City of Eastpointe city manager’s office. Womack holds an OU Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy; a juris doctor from Thomas M. Cooley Law School; and a master’s of public administration from Central Michigan University.

    2010s

    Ryan Balzer, CAS ’12

    opened a chiropractic practice in Midland, Michigan, in June. ADIO Chiropractic is a neurologically-based practice where the entire family can be treated. Along with the new career venture, he and his wife have just welcomed their newborn daughter, Olivia.


    Chris Belcher, SEHS ’15, ’07; CAS ’03

    has been approved by the Lake Fenton, Michigan, Board of Education as the new Lake Fenton High School principal for the next two years. Prior to this position, he served as assistant principal of Grand Blanc High School for three years.


    Alexandra Morgan, SEHS ’13

    has joined Innovative Learning Group as project coordinator. Morgan previously spent three years at FCA US LLC as a human resources business partner supporting the Network Development and Chrysler Academy groups.


    Marc Porter, SEHS ’10

    recently stepped into his new position as president of Crossroads for Youth, a nonprofit that works with at-risk and disadvantaged youth and their families in Michigan. He has been with the Oxford-based Crossroads for Youth for 15 years after previously working for Easter Seals as a case manager. Porter received a Master of Arts in Counseling from OU.


    Megan Reid, SHS ’15

    joined the Recovery Project’s Livonia Clinic as a physical therapist. She will implement custom physical therapy programs for clients with injuries ranging from the spinal cord to traumatic brain injuries.


    Joseph Sadler, SBA ’12

    has been named chief executive group chair for Vistage Michigan. In this position, he will advise, mentor and act as business coach to his group. Sadler has 35 years of expertise in operations and supply chain solutions in global and local organizations.


    Dan Tunis, SECS ’13

    was named one of the 2016 Society of Manufacturing Engineers’ 30 Under 30. Tunis, 25, earned his OU degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering and is an engineer with FCA.

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Engagements & Marriages

Jerry Fournier, CAS ’10

Suzanne Grogan, CAS ’12

have announced their engagement. Grogan graduated from Milford High School and from Oakland University with a bachelor’s degree in Music Performance. She has a master’s degree from New England Conservatory. Fournier has a bachelor’s degree from Oakland University and is a store manager for Enterprise. An August wedding was planned for Traverse City, Michigan.


Maureen Lynch, SEHS ’14

and James Henry have announced their engagement. Lynch is a graduate of Ladywood High School, Central Michigan University and Oakland University. Henry is a graduate of Hartford High School and Central Michigan University. Both reside in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, and are special education teachers. An August wedding was planned.

Births & Adoptions

Colleen (Miller) Campbell, CAS ’10

and her husband, Kevin, welcomed their second child, a son, Hunter Robert, on July 27. He joins big sister, Veronica.


Shawn J. Ward, SECS ’98

and partner Sarah Winters, welcomed their first child, Dash Winters-Ward.

Deaths

1970s

Sandra A. (Knight) Dawson, CAS ’75, on March 26, 2016

Cynthia (Grogan) Early, CAS ’71, on March 12, 2016

Ethel M McCullough, SEHS ’74, on May 18, 2015

Elizabeth H. Patton, CAS ’76, on March 4, 2016

Robert Reyff, CAS ’75, on March 26, 2016

Robert Ruch, SEHS ’76, on April 14, 2016

Audrey M. Wise, CAS ’79, on February 14, 2016

1980s

Douglas J Bushong, CAS ’80, on July 29, 2016

Charles R. Harris, BGS ’83, on March 9, 2016

Stephen M. McClaskey, SBA ’84, on February 14, 2016

Timothy J. O’Leary, SBA ’85, on December 20, 2016

Juliana (Pawloski) Plawecki, SHS ’84, on June 26, 2016

Sue (Brooks) Zunker, SBA ’83, on May 18, 2016

1990s

Joyce E. Auclair, SEHS ’91, ’89, on April 13, 2016

John A. Catherino, SECS, ’92, on April 9, 2016

Thomas P. Flaherty, SB ’93, on July 30, 2016

John A. Henderson, SEHS, ’90, on Mach 2016

Susan L. Hopkins, SBA ’99, on March 19, 2016

Thomas E. Lottie, SBA ’91, on March 19, 2016

2000s

Norma Rose Mullin, SEHS ’89, on February 25, 2016

Daniel Davis, CAS ’07, on March 20, 2016

Faculty & Staff Deaths

Thomas Matthew Suda

passed away on June 13, 2016. He joined the Oakland University faculty in 1995 in the Department of Music, Theatre, and Dance, where he served as a special instructor until his passing.


Linda McCloskey

passed away on August 9, 2016. She joined the Oakland University faculty in 1987 in the Department of English, serving as a special instructor until her passing.


Miroslav David Poulik, M.D.

an adjunct professor of Biological Sciences at OUWB School of Medicine, passed away on August 17, 2016, in Panama City, Florida. He was a former chief of immunopathology at William Beaumont Hospital and professor of immunology at Wayne State University.

Dr. Poulik was credited for helping pave the way for modern vaccines and antibodies. His work on a medical research team on immunoglobulins, or antibodies, led to two colleagues receiving the Nobel Prize in 1972.

Dr. Poulik was also an advisor to the World Health Organization in Lausanne, Switzerland and a consultant to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.