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Lakehead University Magazine Fall/Winter 2005

Class Notes

By Ron Berg



George Yarwood (BA’70, BEd’71) of Oshawa, Ontario, retired in 2002 from his position as an Industrial Training Consultant at the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities. However, he was called back to the MTCU to work on a contract basis.

June Kim (née Willianen) (HBComm’74) graduated as one of three women in her graduating class. She recently retired from Shell Canada after 23 years and moved to Coldstream, B.C., to pursue other personal interests.

John McKeown (BA’77, HBA’78) was awarded his Doctorate of Education from Warnborough University in Canterbury, England. The ceremonies were held at Canterbury Cathedral July 23, 2005. McKeown’s research dissertation focused on issues surrounding school improvements and community development at Turkish foreign national schools. Currently, he is Vice-Principal at the Luanda International School, Angola, Africa. He also provides consultancy to selected Turkish schools harmonizing educational practice to European Union community standards.

After having spent “a lifetime” in Thunder Bay, Tamara Austin (BSc’79, BA’91, HBA’92, MA’95) went on to work as a Children’s Mental Health Therapist for the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre in Fort McMurray, Alberta.


Caesar Squitti (HBComm’80) writes that he “began research in 1987 into various philosophical paradigms and discovered a negative side to truths; anti-truths. The discovery expands the definitions of three concepts ‘half-truths,’ ‘lies,’ and ‘truth,’ while creating a new philosophy, ‘thinking in color.’ The discovery suggests that the biblical story concerning the ‘original sin’ may indeed be true.”

David Donald (BSc’85) now lives in Campbell River, B.C. He works as an Ecosystem Biologist for the Ministry of the Environment, working with the forest industry to protect critical fish and wildlife habitats.

Susan Heald (MA’85) is a professor of Women’s Studies at York University. She was recently awarded the Faculty of Arts Award in Internationalization. Heald is an Associate Fellow of the Centre for Research on Latin America and the Caribbean at York University and a founder of the Canadian Consortium for Universities with Programs in International and Development Issues.

James Hay (HBPE’89, BEd’90), heads Science and Math at the Sterling Hall School in Toronto, where his son David, 12, also attends. He and his wife Angela are proud to be sending their eldest son A.J. to begin his studies at Lakehead this fall.

Bradley Wood (HBSc’89) is a Chief Geologist with De Beers currently working on a two-year work secondment in South Africa.


Jean Maltesen (née Harrison) (BA/BEd’90) works in the Department of Adult Basic Education at the Malaspina University College in Nanaimo, British Columbia. She will begin a MEd degree in the fall of 2005 through the University of Calgary with a focus on Curriculum, Teaching, and Learning.

Vicki Verge (HBSW’92) married Ron Burgess in September 2004, and in October 2004 she graduated with a MSW. She recently left child welfare after 13 years for a position as Manager at the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority.

Mike Carlson (BA/BEd’93) has lived and taught overseas for the past seven years in Instanbul, Turkey; Cairo, Egypt; and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. He has recently moved to Bayonet Point, Florida, as his wife has been diagnosed with cancer and must be near proper medical care.

Wendy Pak (HBComm’93) graduated from the University of Victoria with her Masters of Education – Coaching Studies, a two summer program, in May 2004. She was married in Thunder Bay on August 5, 2000, to Derek Dunkley. On February 6, 2005, Wendy gave birth to a baby girl – Adela (pronounced a-day-la) Mackenzie Pak Dunkley. The family loves to travel and continues to reside in St. Catharines, Ontario, where Adela’s parents both teach at Ridley College.

Nancy Doetzel (BA’94, HBSW’95, HBA’96, MA’98) was recently awarded the 2005 Thomas B. Greenfield Distinguished Dissertation Award for the best doctoral dissertation on educational administration completed in Canada during 2004. After completing her dissertation, Educational Leaders’ Spiritual Insights, Doetzel received her doctorate last year from the University of Calgary graduate division of educational research.

Derek Serianni (BA’94) and his wife Andrea are proud parents of a beautiful daughter named Carina Juliann, born March 14, 2004. Derek writes: “So keep an eye out for her on campus in 2023. Hopefully she won’t enjoy the pub as much as her dad did.” Derek is a sales engineer at Primus Communications in Toronto, Ontario.

Jim Johnson (HBKin’96) is working as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Cellular and Physiological Sciences/Surgery at the University of British Columbia. He is interested in hearing from his classmates. Email: jm@jimjohnson.ca
Jennifer Paddon (BA/BEd’97) has recently purchased her first home. She is living in Waterloo and will be walking to work at her new position as Lead Core French Teacher at the new elementary school opening in September 2005. Laurie writes: “Looking forward to seeing everyone at the reunion and 40th Celebration Weekend in October!”

Christine McMaster (née Varga) (BA/BEd’97)
was married in 2003 and just had her first child – a boy, Gavin, in January. Christine works as a teacher at Prince Charles School. She lives in Belleville, Ontario.

Jason Murray (BA’96, HBA’98) teaches in a secondary school in Burlington, Ontario. He has also spent one year teaching in Australia.

After graduating from Lakehead, Cyndie Allison (MSc’99) worked as a Research Assistant at McGill University for six years, followed by one year of working as a Research Assistant at the University of Pennsylvania. Cyndie then returned home to Cape Breton in 2003 to teach and to enjoy the sailing.

Jeremy Tiers (HBA’98) is working at South St. Paul High School in Minnesota as a College & Career Advisor. He also started a new coaching position in 2004-05, being named Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota. He and his wife Jen have been married for over five years.

Jennifer Niskanen (née Wilson) (BA’99, BEd’99) currently lives in Thunder Bay. She works as a Communication Co-ordinator for the Lakehead Unitarian Fellowship.


After completing her degrees at Lakehead, Amberley Anderson (HBScF’00, MScF’03) worked for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources for three years. Starting in February 2005, she began working at Lakehead as a Technologist/Off-Campus Properties Manager for the Faculty of Forestry and the Forest Environment, and writes: “I just can’t get enough of this place.”

Steve Hebert (HBScF’02) married Anne on August 2, 2003, and they are proud to announce the arrival of their baby girl, born March 17, 2005. Steve works as an Operations Supervisor for Meakin Forest Enterprises Inc., a position he has had since November 8, 2004.
Andrew Turner (HBOR ’02) was just named “Defensive Player of the Year” by the National Lacrosse League (NLL). Andy just finished a season as the Alternate Captain of the Rochester Knighthawks, leading them to the league semi-finals. He was named a first team All Star (for the second straight year) and played in the All Star game in Calgary back in February.

Nadine Lessard (BEd’03) is working as a teacher in South Korea. She is also travelling around South East Asia.

Stephanie Thingstad (BA/BEd’03)
is working in Kuwait as a Kindergarten Teacher. She enjoys spending her free time travelling around the Middle East and learning about the culture and, at the time of writing, was looking forward to spending a summer back in Northern Ontario. Stephanie will be returning for another year in the Middle East.

Chris Fowler (BEd’04) works as an elementary school teacher at Guildwood Jr Public School in Toronto. Following graduation, Chris married Christina Taborda, also an elementary school teacher.

Mathieu Ruel (HBOR/BA’04) lives in Pointe-Claire, Quebec. He travelled for two months in Peru and Bolivia, South America. Now he is enjoying life – climbing.

Kevin Kelner (HBComm’04) travels as an Information Management Analyst for Johnson & Johnson, living both in Montreal and Guelph. He is also actively involved in recruiting efforts for J & J and the Information Management Leadership Development Program at Lakehead in 2005. He is looking forward to visiting friends and family in Thunder Bay and in Southern Ontario throughout 2005.

Jon Balabuck (HBA’04)
has remained active since graduating from Lakehead. He continues to work as a firefighter, but also has competed in, and won, several events such as the triathlon, the duathlon, and the Thunder Bay Firefighters Ten Mile Road Race. A cornerstone of his success has been his wife Laura, whom he married on August 7, 2004. Jon is working towards a Masters of Education and is a member of the Lakehead Cross Country Team.

Jaime Kerr (BA’05) recently graduated from Lakehead with a BA in Gerontology, including certificates in Palliative Care and Dementia. She is a third generation Lakehead grad.


Don Ayre, Former Registrar and Secretary of the University
Kurt Dieter Eigenbrod, Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering
Jeffery Frazer, BEng’78
Fred McIntosh, Former Chief Librarian
Penny Petrone, Professor Emerita of Education, (MA’70)
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