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Lakehead University Magazine Fall/Winter 2007

Class Notes


Dorothy Wright (BA’71), CAO of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM), has been named the 2007 public sector Influential Woman of the Year for the Northwest, an award given out annually by the Northern Ontario Business Magazine. This prestigious award recognizes and honors women who have contributed to the economic growth and development of Northern Ontario.

Donna Fossum (Lib.Tech’73, BA’87) is living in Sarasota, Florida, USA, with her husband Earl who works for Unique Air, Inc. She plans to visit her daughter in Yellowknife this December for the birth of her first grandchild. “We’ll be going out of the frying pan and into the freezer!”

In September 2006, The European Society of Cardiology conferred upon Dr. Andrew Zawadowski (BSc’74, HBSc’75) a Fellowship in recognition of his contributions to cardiology. After graduating from Lakehead, Andrew attended McMaster University Medical School and did a residency at the University of Western Ontario. For over 20 years he has been a practitioner, researcher, and educator in Oakville, ON, where he lives with his wife Iris. As Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine for McMaster University, Andrew has guided many medical and medical technology students, and he has participated in over 14 important clinical research studies at Halton Healthcare Services. Andrew Zawadowski is the son of Dr. Leo Zawadowski, Professor Emeritus of Linguistics and Romance Philology, Lakehead University.

Victor Zilberman (HBPHE’77) was honored recently by the Concordia University Alumni Association for his outstanding service as Concordia’s Men’s Wrestling Coach.

Zilberman defected from the Soviet Union in the early 1970s and was, at the time, a national wrestling champion. He studied at Lakehead and then earned a Graduate Diploma in Sports Administration at Concordia and a PhD at the Université de Montréal.

Over the years, Zilberman founded Montreal’s Wrestling Club and put together Concordia’s first wrestling team for the 1980 Olympic Games. Zilberman eventually became head coach of the Canadian Olympic wrestling team in 1988 and 1992, and continues to coach Canadian athletes internationally. Zilberman’s Concordia wrestling teams have amassed 67 CIS gold medals and produced dozens of national champions. He was also named the outstanding CIS men’s wrestling coach in 1984 and 1986.


In February 2007, Ray Raslack (HBComm’80) was appointed Director of Human Resources at Lakehead University. Prior to his appointment, he spent 12 years as Director of HR Services at St. Marys Paper Ltd. in Sault Ste. Marie, and before that he managed Human Resources for Abitibi-Consolidated, Fort William Division, in Thunder Bay. He currently resides in Thunder Bay with his wife, Laurie, and has two children.

Tara Tyson (BAdmin’84) married Brian Field and now has a blended family of five children. She moved to Toronto in April 2007 and works at Toronto Central CCAC as a Senior Manager of Quality, Risk and Evaluation.

Since her graduation, Lorraine Thomson (HBScN’89/NURSP’96) has been working at the Southwest Aboriginal Health Access Centre as a nurse practitioner and clinical manager in London, ON, where she resides with her husband, Derek Pape.


Piero Pucci (HBA’94) is married to Naira Pucci and they have two sons, Antonio and Victor. The family is living in Petrolia, ON, where Piero is the Manager for Small Business for Scotiabank for Sarnia and Lambton County.

Gregory Duras (BAdmin’94) is the Chief Financial Officer of Vancouver-based Cash Minerals, an emerging publicly listed energy company focused on uranium, coal, and alternative fuels (synfuels). He has more than a decade of senior corporate finance experience for TSX-listed companies. Prior to joining Cash Minerals, Gregory held the position of Vice President of Finance and Administration for a mineral exploration and mining development company, with responsibility for financial reporting, project financing, auditing, and budgeting.

After obtaining her degree from Lakehead, Ursula Ludwig (née Waters) (BA’97) married and had four children. She now lives in Arthur, ON, and works as a Support Worker with Community Living Guelph-Wellington. She is contemplating going back to school for either a teaching degree, or a Master’s degree in Psychology.

Mary Anne Oribhabor (BScN’97) is expecting her second child in December 2007. She obtained a Gerontology diploma from Mount Royal College, AB, works at the William Osler Health Centre in Brampton, ON., and is the recipient of a Preceptorship Award.
Todd Mansell (BEng’97) was recently appointed as the new technical marketing manager for Sakai America - an internationally renowned producer of vibratory compactors. He has an MBA from Santa Clara University in California and more than 15 years of experience in construction materials engineering, much of it in HMA mix design, plant production, placement, and construction of asphalt pavements. Prior to joining Sakai, Mansell was a paving quality engineer for Graniterock in Watsonville, California.

Gino Cacciatore (BAdmin’97) has been appointed Chief Financial Officer of Strangeloop Networks Inc., based in Vancouver, BC. Gino has more than 20 years experience in financial management and has served as Vice President of Finance for OctigaBay Systems, and as Vice President of Finance for Cray Inc.

Jorg Ruppenstein (BEng’98) has been named Chief Executive Officer of the Fort Frances Power Corporation. Jorg has eight years experience working in the pulp and paper industry at Abitibi-Consolidated, Fort Frances Division Mill. He championed several key strategic projects to help the mill stay competitive in a difficult market environment and was a key player in preparing the mill for a deregulated electricity market. He and his wife Christine live in Fort Frances and have one daughter, Monika.

Anthony Santelli (BA’98) graduated from the University of Windsor with a degree in education and recently launched a new online Canadian political magazine, Sir John, named after Sir John A. Macdonald, Canada’s first prime minister (www.sirjohnmag.ca). Santelli is planning the release of a monthly print version of his magazine in late spring or summer of 2008.

Jeremy Tiers (HBA’98) spent the past two years at South St. Paul High School in Minnesota as a College and Career Advisor, and two seasons as an assistant men’s basketball coach at Hamline University in St. Paul. Late last summer he accepted the head assistant coaching position at Bemidji State University in Bemidji, Minnesota, where he now lives with his wife Jen. The school competes at the NCAA Division II level.

Matt Tocheri (HBA’99) obtained a Master’s degree and PhD in Physical Anthropology at Arizona State University. Today, Matt is a graduate research associate with the Partnership for Research in Spatial Modelling (PRISM) at Arizona State U where he is conducting research on technology used in forensic science and anthropology. To learn more about Matt’s work, please visit the PRISM website at http://prism.asu.edu

Mindy Martin (née Foisie) (HBKin’99) is married to Jason Martin (HBKin’99) and they have a two-year-old son. Mindy lives in the Philippines where she works as a school teacher at Brent International School.


Michael Bertuzzi (BA’02) is living in Guilin, China, and managing China climb - China's leading adventure travel company that delivers outdoor education programs for international schools, teambuilding and incentive trips for companies, and custom packages for adventurous tourists from around the world. If you are interested in employment or looking for a program in China you may contact him by email: mike@chinaclimb.com

Kimberly MacKinnon (née Chinkiwsky) (BA/BEd’02) recently was married to David MacKinnon of Cape Breton and is settled in Russell, ON.

Aisling McGilly-Tsokos (BA’02) is married with two sons, Triskin, 3, and Tieran, 1. She lives in Brighton, ON, and works as a teacher with the Algonquin Lakeshore Catholic District School Board.

Nathan Kring (BA’03, HBA’04) was married in June 2004 and his daughter, Tanaeya, was born in February 2006. He is working as an elementary school teacher at Haileybury Public School in Haileybury, ON.

Stacey Cabaj (née Tallon) (BEd'04) has been working for the District School Board of Niagara for over three years as an eighth grade teacher and "loving every minute of it." She has been married for over two years and lives in St. Catharines, ON.

Michelle Bacso (HBES'05, BEd'07) is working as a full-time teacher with the Calgary Board of Education.

Muzi Ndlangamandla (BA'07) is working full-time at Investors Group in Thunder Bay as a Consultant. This Swaziland native resides here in Thunder Bay with his fiancé, Alona, a Civil Engineering student at Lakehead. Muzi can be reached at: muzi.ndlangamandla@investorsgroup.com

Imad Qasim Abdallah Odat (MSc'06) is a PhD student at Queen's University in the School of Computing. He started his studies in January 2007 and is expected to finish in 2010.

Djordje Varagic (BA'06) has returned to Ottawa, ON, and works as a Sales Account Executive with MSC Maplesoft Consulting Inc.

Shelley Adams (BEd'07) is living in Bobcaygeon, ON, and works as an Office Assistant/Desktop Publishing at Buckhorn Narrows Resort in Buckhorn, ON.

Kim Latimer (BEd'07) is the Communications Coordinator for Lakehead's Centre of Excellence for Children and Adolescents with Special Needs in Thunder Bay, ON. She has also been hired as a supply teacher with the Catholic Board of Education.

Crystal Beach (MPH'07) is living in Waterloo, ON, and started law school in the fall of 2007.

James Anderson (HBComm'06, MScMgt'07), one of seven participants in this year's Ontario Municipal Internship Program, is currently working for the town of Marathon, ON.

In Memoriam

Janet Bartley, wife of Mel Bartley, the founding Principal of Lakehead Technical Institute
Geoffrey Engholm
, Professor Emeritus of Political Science
Lisa Richardson,  Professor of English and Classics
Keith Roy, Professor Emeritus of Mathematical Sciences
Richard Sitko, Certificate in Business Leadership’03
Russ Swerdlyk, DipEd’71, BA’75

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