Compiled and edited by Margie Meyer

Submit a Class Note

View the extended Class Notes

View Book Notes

View On Stage


Jack Blendinger (MA-62, EdD-69), Starkville, Miss., was elected to a four-year term as the executive director of the Southern Regional Council on Education Administration. Jack is in his 24th year on the faculty at Mississippi State University and his 58th year as a professional educator.

Ronald Vlasin (BA-66), Loveland, is being inducted into the National High School Coaches Hall of Fame in June. After playing baseball and basketball at UNC, Ron went on to play professional baseball with the Texas Rangers. He coached high school basketball, football and baseball for 35 years, winning nine state basketball championships during that time. Ron coached women’s basketball at UNC 2000-2005. He was inducted into the Colorado High School Coaches Hall of Fame in 2010.

Carlotta Walls LaNier (BS-68, LHD-98), Cherry Hills Village, and Marie L. Greenwood (BA-35), Denver, were featured speakers at Black History Month ceremonies in Cherry Creek. LaNier shared her experience as one of the Little Rock Nine students who integrated the Arkansas high school in 1957. She is author of A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School. Greenwood, age 101, was the first African American teacher to be tenured in Denver Public Schools. She wrote Every Child Can Learn, a collection of essays about some of her most memorable experiences as an educator for 30 years.

Gary Dickhart (BS-69), Spring, Texas, recently retired after 30 years with two Fortune 50 companies in internal audit and IT management and currently does consulting work. His book The Power of Integrity was voted best book of 2013 by Customer Advisory Group. Phyllis (Abraham) Dickhart (BA-69) retired from Continental Airlines.


Doug Hajek (MA-75), Sioux Falls, S.D., was appointed to the board of directors of Meta Financial Group Inc. He is a partner with the law firm Davenport, Evans, Hurwitz & Smith in Sioux Falls, and was selected as one of “The Best Lawyers in America” in the areas of banking and finance, corporate, mergers and acquisitions and financial services regulations.

Rhonda Fields (BA-76, MA-79), Aurora, was appointed speaker pro tem of the Colorado General Assembly. The state representative from House District 442 is the first African American woman to serve in the role at the State Capitol in Denver.

Clementine (Washington) Pigford (MA-76), Centennial, is a historian for one of the oldest churches in the Rocky Mountain region — Denver’s Zion Baptist Church. She is retired from the Denver Public Schools and is an educator with the Colorado Department of Corrections and founder/CEO of Imagine Scribe Service Corporation. Clementine has written a number of articles and self-published books about Colorado African Americans who have made significant contributions to the world.

Janie (Vonderlage) Magruder (BA-78), Tempe, Ariz., is the communications manager at Grand Canyon University, a private Christian university in Phoenix.


Brian Bowen (BA-81), Brighton, serves as a judge in the Adams County 17th Judicial District. In January, he officially commissioned the Adams County Court for Veterans into action. The Adams County Court for Veterans will work to ensure that the county’s veterans receive the services, treatment and support they have earned, while preserving the public’s safety through the criminal justice process.

Scott Reikofski (BA-81), Wilmington, Del., is director of Student Affairs/Fraternity Sorority Life at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He is the recipient of the Sue Kraft Fussell Distinguished Service Award of the Association of Fraternity Sorority Advisors; the 2013 Ethel and Allen “Buddy” Carruth Sustained Leadership in Education from the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania; and the Order of Merit from Lambda Chi Alpha International Fraternity. Scott has a consulting business for higher education, leadership training and developmental program design.

Mary Alice (Gunter) Brent (MA-82), Hays, Kan., retired in May following 38 years in special education and 35 years as a teacher of the visually impaired and blind with Unified School District 489 in Hays.

Jim Lord (BS-82), Greeley, works as an underwriting team manager in Fire Operations for State Farm Insurance in the Greeley Operation Center. In March he celebrated 40 years with State Farm. Jim is a 2007 UNC Athletic Hall of Fame Inductee.

Herminigildo Ranera (MM-87), Manila, Philippines, is associate conductor of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra and a faculty member of the University of Santo Tomas Conservatory of Music.


Clay Drake (BS-90), Windsor, was named vice president and relationship manager at First Western Trust in Fort Collins. He previously held positions as president of Blue Water Resources and vice president of Signature Bank in Windsor. Clay earned a master’s in business administration at the University of Denver.

John Landy (BA-91), Silver Spring, Md., was awarded the 2014 Video Editor of the Year by the White House News Photographers Association. John currently works in the special projects and investigative unit for WTTG-Fox 5 News in Washington, D.C. His 20-year career has included coast-to-coast positions at TCI Channel 8 News, KTVN, KATU, WZZM, USA TODAY LIVE and WTTG.

Mark Robinson (BA-91), Littleton, was named a Denver Broncos high school coach of the week in October. Mark teaches physical education and is head football coach at Lakewood High School.

Roberta Robinette (BA-92), Englewood, is president of AT&T Colorado. Roberta has worked for more than 20 years in government affairs and the telecommunications industry. She served as director of government affairs for AT&T in Colorado and Wyoming 1998-2001.

Stacey (Bartholomew) Mathews (BA-95), Austin, Texas, was appointed judge of the 277th Judicial District by Gov. Rick Perry. Stacey is an assistant district attorney for the Williamson County District Attorney’s Office and former Harris County assistant district attorney. She received her law degree from the University of Houston Law Center and is board certified in criminal law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

Heather Beck (MA-96), Littleton, was named superintendent of schools at Lake Oswego Schools in Oregon, effective July 1. Heather was previously chief academic officer at Jefferson County Public Schools in Colorado and has nearly 20 years of administrative experience in K-12 schools.

Laura Rahimi Barnes (BA-98), Lakewood, who writes under the name Laurelin Paige, just signed a new book deal with St. Martin’s Press for Inquire Within, due out later this year. As of April 27, her popular trilogy of erotic romance books (Fixed on You, Found in You and Forever with You) was No. 2 on the New York Times best-selling fiction e-books list and best-selling combined fiction print and e-books list.

Alan Walls (BS-98, MS-03), Wailuku, Hawaii, is the director and head coach of National Teams Programs and sport and business development consultant for the Mongolian Basketball Association. Alan has 19 years of worldwide coaching experience at the youth, high school, college and professional levels and was previously the director of instruction and head coach with Five-Star Basketball China.

Kelly Russell (BS-99), Littleton, works as the mental health transition planner at the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office in Golden, where she has been employed for 15 years. Kelly earned her MS degree in Criminology from Regis University in December 2013.


Joel Barnes (BA-02), Castle Rock, is the chief meteorologist for KCWY News 13 in Casper, Wyo. He has been awarded several Wyoming Association of Broadcasters Awards in the 10 years he has worked at News 13.

Andrea Bryant (MA-06), Cheyenne, is the new executive director of the Wyoming Professional Teaching Standards Board, an independent professional licensing board that governs teacher licensure in Wyoming.

Myles Johnson (BS-06), Commerce City, has joined Greeley law firm Otis & Peters. His practice will focus on real estate and business litigation. Myles received his law degree from the University of Denver and previously had his own law firm in Denver.

Jeff Schiel (BA-03), Sterling, teaches anthropology at Northeastern Junior College. He previously worked with the Montana State Crime Lab on active forensic cases and the Missoula County Sheriff’s Department. Jeff enjoys hiking and backpacking.

Christie Ross (BA-08), Loveland, joined the Peace Corps and was assigned to Burkina Faso, where she lived in an earthen house for two years.


Cody Dalpra (BA-10), Logan, Utah, earned a master’s degree in archaeology and cultural resource management from Utah State University. He is an analyst at the PaleoResearch Institute in Golden. Cody previously worked on academic and contract cultural resource management projects in Colorado, Idaho, Utah and Wyoming and at the University of Oklahoma.

Morgan Jaquez (BA-10), Cañon City, was accepted into medical school at West Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Kellsie Endres (BA-11), Aurora, works for Community Education Outreach.

Mark Hayes (PhD-11), Fort Collins, conducts research on bats. His article on bat fatalities at wind energy facilities in the United States was published in the December issue of BioScience, the monthly journal of the American Institute of Biological Sciences.

Brad Henderson (BS-12), Downers Grove, Ill., joined HUB International Insurance in Bozeman, Montana, as a commercial lines insurance producer.

Brandin Mauch (BS-12), Greeley, is an accountant specializing in audit and tax work with the CPA firm of Anderson & Whitney, P.C, of Greeley.

Jennifer Watson (BA-12), Bloomington, Ind., is working on a master’s degree in museum studies at Indiana University-Purdue University in Indianapolis.

Sarah Wiens (BA-12), Sedalia, was named first runner up at the 2014 Miss Rodeo America USA competition.

Chelsea Moss (BS-13), Colorado Springs, was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the United States Air Force.

Brian Popick (BS-13), Henderson, was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the United States Air Force.

Josh Dasher (BA-14) has been hired as an audio specialist in the technical production department with the Walt Disney Company in Florida.

Degree Decoder: B.A. - Bachelor of Arts; B.S. - Bachelor of Science; B.M. - Bachelor of Music; B.M.E. - Bachelor of Music Education; L.C. - Limited Certificate; M.A. - Master of Arts; M.S. - Master of Science; M.A.T. - Master of Arts in Teaching; M.M. - Master of Music; M.P.H. - Master of Public Health; Ph.D. - Doctor of Philosophy; Psy.D. - Doctor of Psychology; Ed.D. - Doctor of Education; D.A. - Doctor of Arts; D.N.P.-Doctor of Nursing Practice; Ed.S. - Educational Specialist


GET connected STAY connected to UNC
View the photos from our #BorntobeaBear Facebook photo album.
Check out UNC Alumni Association events at


Class of 1964 50th Reunion!
Reconnect with your classmates and rekindle your love for campus October 3-4, 2014! Once a Bear, always a Bear. Visit or call 970-351-2551 for more information and registration.