Summer 2016
Class Notes

Alumni Updates: Summer 2016

Pitt graduates do amazing things.

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Seymour A. Herron DEN ’40, who was a part of the 10-piece trumpet group that introduced Pitt’s marching band from 1934 through 1936, celebrated his 100th birthday in April. 


Pat McMann Gilchrist A&S ’45 wrote It’s Midnight in Berlin: A True Story of an American Girl in War Torn Berlin 1946-47 (Xlibris) about her experiences serving as a civilian with the U.S. Office of Military Government in Germany directly following the end of World War II. She currently lives in Richmond, Va.


Milana Karlo Bizic EDUC ’62, ’67G was ranked 16th in a list of the “100 Most Influential Serbs” in the world in the March issue of Serbian magazine Blic. She is the chief learning officer of Bizic Education in Pittsburgh.

Lois Gerber NURS ’62 has written a novel, Runaway Girl: A Nurse’s Story (Taylor & Seale Publishing), which is set in Pittsburgh in the 1920s. Gerber has previously published three books of short stories and has over 40 years of experience in community health. She lives in Port Orange, Fla.


Faith Beckerman Goldman SHRS ’66 published an article, “A Journey of a Thousand Miles,” in the 17th issue of Asian Jewish Life magazine. She lives in Torrance, Calif.


John R. Jenchura A&S ’71 recently released a revised and updated second edition of his book, Golf: A Good Walk and Then Some, A Quintessential History of the Game (Mountain Lion, Inc.). 


Nasario García A&S ’72G published his 30th book, Hoe, Heaven, and Hell: My Boyhood in Rural New Mexico (University of New Mexico Press). It was named “Best Book on New Mexico” and the year’s top biography by the New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards. It also received the 2016 Fabiola Cabeza de Baca Award from the Historical Society of New Mexico. 


Joyce Kettren NURS ’73 is the director of contracts and risk management with Pathways Home Health, Hospice & Private Duty, located in the San Francisco Bay area.


Joel Nachlas ENGR ’74G, ’76G, formerly an associate professor of industrial and systems engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va., has been named associate professor emeritus by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

Michael Willig A&S ’74, ’82G, received a Board of Trustees Distinguished Professorship at the University of Connecticut based on his research, education, and service contributions in the fields of ecology and evolutionary biology. He and colleagues also received a grant from the National Science Foundation’s Long-Term Ecological Research Program to continue multidisciplinary, collaborative environmental research in Puerto Rico’s Luquillo Mountains.


Robert DeLuca BUS ’75G has written The Pact with the Devil (Archway Publishing), a novel about a real estate mogul who strikes an ill-fated deal with a drug kingpin. DeLuca resides in Friendswood, Tex.

Marilyn H. Oermann NURS ’75G, EDUC ’80G coauthored the third edition of Writing for Publication in Nursing (Springer Publishing). She is editor-in-chief of Nurse Educator and the Journal of Nursing Care Quality, as well as the Thelma M. Ingles professor of nursing and director of evaluation and educational research at Duke University School of Nursing in Durham, N.C.


Rita (Bolek) Trofino NURS ’76, ’81G has been elected vice president of Pennsylvania Higher Education Nursing Schools Association, and was also appointed to the membership committee for the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. She is associate dean at the School of Health Sciences and the Nursing Department chair at Saint Francis University in Loretto, Pa.


Richard Infante A&S ’78, ’82G recenty published Last Priest Standing and Other Stories (Lambing Press), a book of seven short stories. He is a Catholic priest of the Diocese of Pittsburgh.


Gregg Feinberg A&S ’80, LAW ’83 has been elected chair of the ArtsQuest Board of Trustees. He is the principal in the Allentown, Pa.-based Feinberg Law Office and Feinberg Real Estate Advisors, LLC.

Michael Parenti A&S ’80, DEN ’83 closed his private dentistry practice of 32 years in May 2015 to teach dentistry at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine in Erie, Pa. An article about his career switch was published in LECOM Connection magazine.

Gail Simmons A&S ’80 has been appointed provost of Hofstra University in Long Island, N.Y. She is the first woman to hold the position at the university. 


John Kostic CGS ’81 recently retired. He spent half of his career as an engineering technician, and the rest as a chemistry technician.

Reid Roberts A&S ’81, LAW ’84 has been reelected to the executive committee of the law firm Strassburger McKenna Gutnick & Gefsky, where he is a shareholder working out of the Pittsburgh office and head of the firm’s divorce and domestic relations practice.


Ron Barber A&S ’83, LAW ’88 served as co-presenter of the Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Continuing Legal Education course, “Internet Defamation.” Barber is a shareholder in Strassburger McKenna Gutnick & Gefsky, working out of the law firm’s Pittsburgh office.

Margaret A. Farabaugh A&S ’83 has been named chairperson of ASTM International Committee A05 on Metallic-Coated Iron and Steel Products. She is a technical services engineer for The Techs, a Division of Steel Dynamics, in Turtle Creek, Pa.


Robert Matejczyk UPJ ’84 has joined the Morgantown, W.Va., office of Larson Design Group as a project manager. 


Grace Campbell SOC WK ’85G, NURS ’94, ’13G recently received a Research Career Development Award from the Oncology Nursing Society Foundation. She will use the grant to explore gait and mobility changes during and after neurotoxic chemotherapy. She is an assistant professor with Pitt’s School of Nursing.

Harry F. Kunselman A&S ’85, LAW ’89 has been reelected to the executive committee of Strassburger McKenna Gutnick & Gefsky, where he is a shareholder working out of the Pittsburgh and Beaver County, Pa., offices in the areas of civil and commercial litigation.


Margaret Rosenzweig NURS ’86, ’01G has been promoted to full professor with tenure at the University of Pittsburgh. She is also an affiliate faculty member in Pitt’s Center for Bioethics and Health Law, in addition to maintaining a clinical practice as a nurse practitioner at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute. 


Paul Hawthorne A&S ’88 has been named the senior vice president of Eisai Inc.’s U.S. commercial neurology business group. He is responsible for leading the U.S. neurology sales and marketing teams in bringing Eisai’s neurology portfolio products to patients.

Marian Kent A&S ’88, LAW ’93 recently joined American International College in Springfield, Mass., as director of grants for institutional advancement.

Victoria Soltis-Jarrett NURS ’88G was awarded the Carol Morde Ross Distinguished Professorship in Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Nursing.


Sheila A. Alexander NURS ’89, ’04G was honored at the American College of Critical Care Medicine Convocation in February, when she was accepted as a fellow of the organization. She is an associate professor in Pitt’s School of Nursing.

Tricina Cash A&S ’89, BUS ’09G is an entrepreneur and the Pitt Black MBA Network vice president of operations. Her company, IBEX IT Business Experts, located in Sandy Springs, Ga., was given the 2015 On the Rise Government Contractor of the Year Award by American Express OPEN.


Lynn George NURS ’90G has been named the inaugural dean of the College of Health and Wellness at Carlow University in Pittsburgh.

Mildred Jones NURS ’90G, NURS ’00G has been named professor emerita at Carlow University in Pittsburgh. She also serves as president of the Pennsylvania State Nurses Association, District 6.


Nicholas Bizic A&S ’91, GSPIA ’93 has been appointed chief human resources officer for Golder Associates, a civil engineering organization. He is based in Houston, Tex.

Brian Vertz BUS ’91G, LAW ’91 has been elected to second vice president of the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. He will ascend to the position of chapter president over the next three years. Vertz is a partner in family law at the Pittsburgh firm Pollock Begg Komar Glasser & Vertz LLC.


John Demming A&S ’92 has been promoted to vice president of corporate and financial communications of Comcast Corporation in Philadelphia, Pa. 

Tracey Grace A&S ’92, BUS ’93G is the president and CEO of IBEX IT Business Experts in Sandy Springs, Ga., which was given the 2015 On the Rise Government Contractor of the Year Award by American Express OPEN.

Patrick Skelley A&S ’92 has been appointed county attorney for Bedford County, Va.


Yvette Conley GSPH ’93G, ’99G earned the 2015 ISONG Founders Award for Research from the International Society of Nurses in Genetics. Conley, professor and vice chair for research in Pitt’s Department of Health Promotion and Development, has received significant federal funding for her genomic and epigenomic studies of patient outcomes after traumatic brain injury.

Heidi Rabinowitz Estrin SIS ’93G recently earned the 2016 Fanny Goldstein Merit Award from the Association of Jewish Libraries. She works as the library director and media specialist at Congregation B’nai Israel in Boca Raton, Fla.


Stephen Toadvine GSPH ’95 has been named president of Baptist Health Medical Group in Louisville, Ky.


John Saras A&S ’97, EDUC ’99G has been named one of “Pittsburgh’s 50 Finest” by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation for 2016. He is the assistant principal at Baldwin High School in the city’s South Hills neighborhood.

Michelle Singer A&S ’97 has been promoted to vice president of corporate administration and political engagement at Comcast Corporation in Philadelphia, Pa. 


Paula Bohince A&S ’98 published a new poetry collection, Swallows and Waves (Sarabande Books). It is comprised of 60 poems, each based on a different Japanese Edo-period artwork.


Clinton Amey CGS ’02 has been hired by Dewberry, a privately held professional services firm, as a senior project engineer in the firm’s Pittsburgh and Carlisle, Pa., offices. 

Tammy M. Haley NURS ’02G, ’12G, GSPH ’13 has been named director of Pitt-Bradford’s nursing and radiological science programs. She also conducts research focusing on women’s health issues, particularly those affecting rural, adolescent women and children.


Robin Lane NURS ’05 is a senior manager of value analysis for UPMC. She currently serves as the Northeast regional director and board member for the Association of Healthcare Value Analysis Professionals. 

Marci Nilsen NURS ’05, ’08G, ’13G received a Research Career Development Award from the Oncology Nursing Society Foundation. She will use the grant for research identifying long-term survivorship needs between cancer patients and their family caregivers. She is a Claire M. Fagin Fellow in Pitt’s School of Nursing. 


Andrea Cober UPJ ’06 is a marketing specialist at Godfrey, a nationally ranked business-to-business marketing communications agency in Lancaster, Pa.

Jessica Sharrow Thompson LAW ’06 was promoted to partnership at Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC. She practices law in environmental counseling and litigation out of the firm’s Pittsburgh office.

Sean P. Ritchie ENGR ’06, LAW ’10, ENGR ’11G has joined the Nashville, Tenn., office of Stites & Harbison, PLLC, as a patent attorney in their Intellectual Property & Technology Service Group.


Danika Ervin A&S ’12 has been appointed the city lead for MakeOffices, where she is responsible for creating partnerships between the business and technology communities in Philadelphia, Pa.

Gabe Wonderling A&S ’12, LAW ’15 joined the Pittsburgh law firm Frank, Gale, Bails, Murcko & Pocrass, P.C., as an associate attorney. His areas of practice include family law and media law.


Kelsey Moss PHARM ’14, ’16G was recently named the 2016 Outstanding Pharmacy Student by the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association. She is completing a PGY1 Pharmacy Practice residency with Allegheny General Hospital, with a focus in ambulatory care/community practice, while working part-time for Rite Aid. 


Micaela Fox Corn A&S ’15 created a podcast, “Let’s Talk About Sex,” for Pitt Med, the magazine for Pitt’s School of Medicine. She’s also writing about science and other topics for Pitt Magazine.


Wasi Mohamed A&S ’16 was honored with the Male Rising Star Award at the Get Involved! Inc. Service Summit. He is the executive director of the Islamic Center of Pittsburgh.