Class Notes

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1960s & Earlier

Claudia Chapline, BA '53, published her second memoir, Moving Out Of The Frame (Norfolk Press, 2015). In the book, she shares 50 years of her creative life in modern dance, performance art and community arts in California.

Rhoda B. Miller, BA '62, MA '68, translated from French Contemporary China: Between Mao and Market by François Godement (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, August 2015). The book is an overview of Chinese politics, economy and society.

Larry Broadwell, BA '66, published The Hikers Guide to Civil War Trails in the Mid-Atlantic Region. The book includes maps, photos and descriptions for 27 trails through an area known as the "cockpit of the Civil War," including Gettysburg and Antietam.

Bruce Brodkin, MD '67, published Spotswood (CreateSpace, November 2014), a mystery-thriller novel set in 1959 at a summer camp in northwestern New Jersey.

James Korman, JD '68, of Bean, Kinney & Korman in Arlington, Va., was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers 2016 for family law. He also was recognized as a 2015 "Leader in the Law" by Virginia Lawyers Weekly.


Anthony M. Zola, BA '70, is an adviser to the government of Laos' Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, formulating an agro-economic upland development program for about 80 percent of the country's area.

Alan S. Nadel, BS '71, JD '76, was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers 2016. He was recognized for his work in patent litigation, intellectual property litigation, patent law, trademark law and copyright law.

Richard F. Keller, MS '73, a retired Army lieutenant general, was elected to Park University's board of trustees.

Bruce W. Merwin, BA '73, an attorney at Thompson & Knight's Houston office, was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers 2016. He also was named a 2015 "Texas Super Lawyer" by Thomson Reuters and one of the "Leaders in their Field" for construction law and real estate law by Chambers USA.

Larry Movshin, JD '74, a partner in the law firm Wilkinson Barker Knauer, was inducted into the Wireless History Foundation Hall of Fame on Sept. 8 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Las Vegas.

Lisa J. Savitt, BA '74, opened the Washington, D.C., office of The Axelrod Firm. Ms. Savitt specializes in international litigation and in August became the chair of the American Bar Association Section of International Law.

Howard Williams, LLM '75, a partner at Brooks Pierce in Greensboro, N.C., was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers 2016.

T.J. Clemente, BA '76, published Triangle Love (CreateSpace, August 2015), a novel about three freshmen who meet at GW in the early 1970s and form a two-decadelong bond, leading to love, wealth and tragedy.

Andrew Svedlow, BA '77, published Thirty Works of Art Every Student Should Know (Kendall Hunt, January 2015), which details artists and art movements, identifying key works that helped make art what it is today.

James Schroll, JD '78, of Bean, Kinney & Korman in Arlington, Va., was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers 2016 for his work in bankruptcy, creditor/debtor rights, insolvency and reorganization law.

Lee H. Dymond, MPhil '76, PhD '79, wrote A Recent History of Recognized Economic Thought: Contributions of the Nobel Laureates to Economic Science (Lulu Publishing Services, May 2015). The book offers insight on the accomplishments and impacts of winners of the Nobel prize in economic sciences.

David Elkind, BA '79, joined Lowenstein Sandler as a partner in the law firm's Washington, D.C., office.

Michael S. Mitchell, LLM '79, of Fisher & Phillips in New Orleans, was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers 2016.


Leo Fisher, JD '80, of Bean, Kinney & Korman in Arlington, Va., was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers 2016 for commercial litigation.

Alan Zimmet, JD '80, earned the Local Government Fellow designation from the International Municipal Lawyers Association in Tampa, Fla.

William Longyard, BA '80, published Power Hammers: Using the Ultimate Sheet Metal Fabrication Tool (Wolfgang Publications, September 2015), which explains the process and skills required to use this nearly extinct machine and provides advice for fabricators.

Gregg Berman, BA '84, JD '87, of Thompson & Knight in New York, was selected by his peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers 2016 for corporate law.

David A. Samuels, MBA '84, was appointed to the Board of Directors of Junior Achievement of Greater Washington and elected vice chair of development for the Charles E. Smith Life Communities.

Jill Liberman, BA '85, published Choose Happy (Spirit Books Publications, February 2015), a guide for living a more positive life. Ms. Liberman has more than 20 years of media experience, serving, notably, as executive producer for programs that aired on CNBC, the Food Network and the Travel Channel.

Samuel R. Maizel, JD '85, joined Dentons US LLP in Los Angeles as a partner in the firm's restructuring, insolvency and bankruptcy practice after nearly two decades at Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones.

Cheryl Smith, BA '85, published "A MINI Roadtrip" in Sports 'N Spokes magazine. The article focuses on how adaptive equipment can help disabled citizens and wounded soldiers regain their independence. Ms. Smith is marketing director at Driving Aids Development Corporation in Vienna, Va.

Josh Sawislak, BA '86, was appointed global director of resilience by AECOM, a technical services firm positioned to design, build, finance and operate infrastructure assets. Mr. Sawislak previously served as associate director for climate adaptation on the White House Council on Environmental Quality.

Gary E. Bannett, BS '87, MBA '90, joined Guggenheim Partners as CFO, Entertainment Group, based in New York City, responsible for Billboard magazine and The Hollywood Reporter.

Ronald A. Hodge, MBA '87, coauthored Know How: Experience, Expertise, Execution (CreateSpace, June 2015), a collection of the best advice from more than 30 leaders that are part of the Shields Meneley Partners family.

Phillip Crawford Jr., JD '88, wrote The Mafia and the Gays (CreateSpace, March 2015), which examines the mob's historical involvement with gay bars in cities across the United States.

John Kinsella, MA '88, joined the American Bankers Association as vice president of tax policy. He will serve as ABA's technical expert on tax legislation, as well as advocate for member banks in areas of federal and state corporate taxation, international bank taxation, tax procedure, compliance, financial products and services.

Melissa E. Darigan, BA '89, became president of the Rhode Island Bar Association in June 2015. She is a partner in Partridge Snow & Hahn and co-chair of the firm's litigation practice group.

Bret H. Rigby, MBA '89, was appointed president and CEO of TransWest Credit Union in Salt Lake City. Previously, Mr. Rigby was the president/CEO of Deepwater Industries Federal Credit Union in Pennsville, N.J.


David Robinson, JD '90, was named honorary consul for Japan in North Carolina by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the U.S. State Department.

Michele Wehrwein Albion, MA '91, edited The Quotable Amelia Earhart (University of New Mexico Press, September 2015), a collection of the pilot's quotes about, notably, her flights, as well as her opinions on politics, work, religion and gender equality.

Mitch Pascal, BA '91, was named principal of Tuckahoe Elementary School in Arlington, Va. He also is an adjunct professor in the GW Graduate School of Education and Human Development, where he teaches a social studies methods class.

Marc Druckman, JD '92, joined the Miami office of the international law firm Greenberg Traurig as a shareholder in the corporate and securities practice group.

Ron Fricker, MS '92, is a professor and head of the Department of Statistics in the College of Science at Virginia Tech. Previously, he served as a professor in the Operations Research Department at the Naval Postgraduate School.

Pam Jenoff, BA '92, wrote The Last Summer at Chelsea Beach (MIRA Books, July 2015), a poignant tale of love, redemption and survival, set against the backdrop of World War II.

Gary Kravitz, JD '93, joined Maddin, Hauser, Roth & Heller as a senior attorney in the firm's real estate, corporate and business, and franchise practice groups.

Mehmood Kazmi, BA '94, a partner with Share Investment Company in Greenbelt, Md., was appointed to Virginia Tech's Board of Visitors in the State Council of Higher Education.

Jared Sher, BA '97, JD '00, was promoted to senior vice president and associate general counsel of 21st Century Fox.

William W. "Bill" Riley Jr., BA '98, a shareholder in GrayRobinson's Miami office, was appointed by the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners to the Court Capital Infrastructure Task Force.

Lonnie Giamela, BA '99, a partner in both the Los Angeles and Irvine, Calif., offices of law firm Fisher & Phillips, was named to the 2015 list of "Southern California Rising Stars" by Super Lawyers.

Scott M. Grossman, JD '99, a shareholder in the business reorganization and financial restructuring practice of international law firm Greenberg Traurig, was sworn in as president of the Bankruptcy Bar Association of the Southern District of Florida for the 2015-16 term.

Alan Weatherbee, BA '99, launched the Weatherbee Talent Group in Los Angeles, an executive search firm that seeks to broker long-term career opportunities between organizations and professionals, specializing in placing top marketing, digital and PR professionals throughout the United States, Europe and Asia.


Matt Katz, BA '00, and a team from WNYC radio won a Peabody Award for their coverage of New Jersey governor Chris Christie and the bridge scandal.

Heather McKee Hurwitz, BA '01, received a PhD in sociology from the University of California-Santa Barbara on June 14. Dr. Hurwitz's dissertation was titled, "The 51%: Gender, Feminism, and Culture in the Occupy Wall Street Movement."

Ryan Sutton, BA '01, won a James Beard award—the Craig Claiborne Distinguished Restaurant Review Award—for his work on "Artisanal-Everything Roberta's Defies the Stereotypes," "Once an Icon, Per Se is Showing its Age" and "Six Reasons Why Cosme is One of NYC's Most Relevant New Restaurants."

Beth L. Weisser, BA '01, is a partner in Fox Rothschild's litigation practice group, within the firm's Philadelphia office.

Brandon Moss, BS '00, JD '03, was promoted to partner at Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane in Quincy, Mass. He also was appointed chair of the Massachusetts Bar Association Public Law Section Council and to the executive board of the Rotary Club of Quincy. Mr. Moss practices public law, land-use law, aviation law and litigation.

Regina Bowman-Goldring, MA '02, was promoted to assistant vice president of student services at the College of Southern Maryland, Leonardtown Campus.

Justin Petrone, BA '02, published My Estonia 3: What Happened? (Petrone Print, June 2015), a travel memoir that follows his previous novels My Estonia 1 and My Estonia 2.

Ayindé Rudolph, MEd '02, CERT '03, was appointed superintendent of the Mountain View Whisham School District in Mountain View, Calif.

Joseph Black, MS '03, was named Northrop Grumman Senior Faculty Fellow by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors. He is associate professor of aerospace and ocean engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech. He's also associate director of research for aerospace systems at the Ted and Karyn Hume Center for National Security and Technology.

Sonya Brzozowski Sclama, MA '04, and her husband Andrew Sclama, welcomed their first child, Alexander Brzozowski Sclama, on June 16 at 2:09 a.m. The couple resides in Forest Hills, N.Y.

Rachel Alexander, JD '05, will serve as co-chair of the Women in Law Empowerment Forum in Washington, D.C. Ms. Alexander counsels clients on health care and government contracting matters.

Nicholas J. DelDotto, BA '05, married Katharine McCown on May 23 in Duck, N.C. Mr. DelDotto recently moved to West Chester, Pa., where he will continue his career as a high school social studies teacher. Several GW alumni attended the wedding.

Robert Kimmer, JD '05, joined Michael Best & Friedrich in Washington, D.C., as senior counsel in the firm's intellectual property practice group.

Lincoln Michel, BA '05, wrote Upright Beasts (Coffee House Press, 2015), a short-story collection about individuals doing battle with their darker, weirder impulses as the world collapses around them. Among the stories: children go to school long after all the teachers have disappeared; a man manages an apartment complex of attempted suicides; a couple navigates their relationship in the midst of a zombie attack.

Helen Nowlin, LLM '05, developed, a website that offers unique coverage of the American Indian Probate Reform Act and makes the connection between guardianships and the Indian Child Welfare Act. Guest writers and bloggers are welcome, upon approval of a proposed topic.

Bhaveen Jani, BBA '06, joined Blank Rome as an associate in the law firm's consumer finance litigation group based in its Princeton, N.J., office.

Jessica Denson, BA '07, appeared in Show Me a Hero, a six-episode HBO miniseries from The Wire creator David Simon that ran during the summer of 2015. Ms. Denson played Gail Wasicsko, the sister in- law of embattled Yonkers, N.Y., mayor Nick Wasicsko, played by Oscar Isaac.

Erik K. Eisenmann, JD '07, was elected shareholder of Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek. He is a member of the human resources law practice group in the firm's Milwaukee office, where he represents employers in labor and employment law.

Brad Lackey, BBA '07, opened The Presidio Group in Washington, D.C., where he provides holistic wealth management to ultra-affluent individuals and families across the country. He was named a Five Star Wealth Manager for 2015 by The Washington Post.

Jordan McNerney, BA '07, and Alexandra Valenti, BA '07, married on May 30 at Gansett Green Manor in Amagansett, N.Y. Several GW alumni were in attendance, including members of the bridal party who closed the reception with a rendition of the GW fight song.

Aaron Davis, LLM '09, of Thornton Davis Fein in Miami, was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Florida Defense Lawyers Association, a group of more than a thousand leading civil defense lawyers in the state.

Nan Devlin, MTA '09, was named executive director of Visit Tillamook Coast, a new, county-wide destination marketing organization in Oregon. She will lead efforts to develop the Pacific Coast county as a place for nature-based tourism, including paddle sports, fishing, hiking, surfing and camping. Ms. Devlin recently contributed a chapter, "Sustainability in Food and Drink Tourism," for Have Fork Will Travel, an industry guide developed by the World Food Travel Association.

Gary Kraiss Jr., BA '09, was appointed Ward 2 chairman for the D.C. Republican Party. He serves as a program support officer at the U.S. Department of State's Office of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator and Health Diplomacy.

Laura Venos, MA '09, wrote and published The Royal Series (CreateSpace, August 2015), a series of children's picture books about smart princesses who want more out of life than tea parties and balls, so they work hard and find themselves in fulfilling careers.

Corey Coleman, BA '10, was selected by Success Academy Charter Schools as a winner of the Teacher Excellence Award for 2015.

Cassall Graber-Tilton, BA '10, and Matthew K. Spencer, BA '08, married in Haymarket, Va., in June. The couple resides in Alexandria, Va. Ms. Graber-Tilton is the human resource generalist for ADNET Systems, Inc. Mr. Spencer is the federal partner manager at Microstrategy, Inc. inTysons Corner, Va.

Kacy Sellers Lawrence, MPP '10, joined the Virginia Tech graduate school as a data reporting and assessment administrator. She will collect, organize and analyze data and reports to support and strengthen decision-making and planning for the graduate school and the university.

Jared B. Brenner, BA '11, has joined Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr as an associate in the firm's New York office. Mr. Brenner will work in the corporate practice group on transactions for startups and technology companies.

Richard Davis, BA '11, joined Hall, Render, Killian, Heath & Lyman as an attorney in the firm's Milwaukee office.

Roberta Richardson, CERT '11, presented at the 64th Annual International Hearing Society Convention and Expo, held in Orlando, Fla., from Sept. 10-12. She may be contacted for speaking engagements on health care quality and other topics at [email protected].

Sheri Byrne-Haber, MBA '12, was named global accessibility program manager for McDonald's in its San Francisco digital office. Ms. Byrne-Haber has dedicated the last 15 years to assisting people with disabilities in obtaining the goods and services that they are entitled to under the Americans with Disabilities Act, as well as the Individuals with Disabilities Act.

Jake Miner, BA '12, joined the U.S. Department of State as a foreign service officer. Mr. Miner will start his first tour of duty as a political officer in May 2016 in New Delhi.

Cody Pennetti, CERT '12, was named an associate in Dewberry's Fairfax, Va., office. He specializes in site infrastructure design and has more than nine years of experience as a project civil engineer.

Jacob E. Thayer, BA '13, graduated with a Master of Public Affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas-Austin. Mr. Thayer was also recognized by the U.S. Coast Guard out of a pool of 31,000 as the 2014 Auxiliarist of the Year.

Alexis Melchione, BS '14, joined Structura Inc. as a staff engineer in Rockville, Md. She will provide support on a variety of design projects, including the Landmark Mall Redevelopment and the Brightview Rockville Town Center.

In Memoriam

Carlos Talbott

Carlos Talbott

A World War II fighter pilot, retired Lt. Gen. Carlos Talbott, MA '64, died Feb. 26 at age 95. Lt. Gen. Talbott served 34 years in the Air Force. As a P-47 pilot during WWII, he flew 96 combat missions. He served two tours in Vietnam as director of air operations, and in 1955 he won the Bendix Transcontinental Air Race. Photo: Courtesy U.S. Air Force

Floretta McKenzie

Floretta McKenzie

A long-serving superintendent and a reformer of Washington, D.C., public schools, Floretta McKenzie, EdD '85, died March 23 from complications related to Parkinson's disease. She was 79. Dr. McKenzie was superintendent from 1981 to 1988 and oversaw a period of stability for the troubled D.C. school system. Photo: Courtesy The History Makers

Frank E. Petersen Jr.

Frank E. Petersen Jr.

Retired Lt. Gen. Frank E. Petersen Jr., BA '67, MS '73—the first black Marine Corps pilot and general—died Aug. 25 at age 83 from complications related to lung cancer. Lt. Gen. Petersen served 38 years after enlisting in 1950, flying more than 300 combat missions in Korea and Vietnam. He was the first African American to command a fighter squadron and was promoted to general in 1979. Photo: N.R. Casini/U.S. Marine Corps

Franklin P. Michels, AA '43, BL '48
July 6, 2015
McLean, Va.

Vincent H. D. Abbey, LLM '51
June 15, 2015
Seattle, Wash.

Fred Samuelson, AA '51, BA '53
May 16, 2015 Ashland, Va.

Geraldine Smith Solberg, BL '53
July 14, 2015

Norman F. Slenker, JD '55
June 26, 2015
Hilton Head, S.C.

Christyna E. Mecca, BS '60, MS '63, PhD '69
July 7, 2015

George P. Stavros, JD '61
Aug. 13, 2015
Ashland, Ky.

Floyd Loop, MD '62
June 11, 2015

Robert L. Adams, MS '70
July 23, 2015
Mableton, Ga.

Marion Pasteur Lelong, JD '72
July 7, 2015
Falls Church, Va.

Gil Thurm, JD '72, LLM '74
July 31, 2014
Brookline, Mass.

Joyce L. Bartoo, JD '81
July 18, 2015
Washington, D.C.

Diane Jean Stubbs, JD '81
July 18, 2015
Annapolis, Md.

Lorraine R. Breitman-Eras, BA '82
Nov. 1, 2014
Teaneck, N.J.

Jessica N. Ball, JD '15
July 6, 2015

Faculty, Staff, Trustees

Ozgur Ekmecki, EdD '05
Associate Professor and Interim Chair of the Department of Clinical Research and Leadership
Sept. 19, 2015
Sterling, Va.

A Curated Tour of Alumni Weekend 2015

A Curated Tour of Alumni Weekend 2015

Matt Manfra, GW's new head of alumni relations, offers some highlights.


Endowed Gifts: A Primer

Endowed Gifts: A Primer

 The university's more than 1,300 endowments provide funding for scholarships, professorships and programs, among other things, in perpetuity.

Chardonnay By the Bay

Chardonnay By the Bay

More than 100 GW alumni, parents, prospective students and other guests mingled during a November afternoon of food and wine pairings in San Francisco.