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Class Notes

Class Notes

1920s and 40s

Ann Barrow Ivins, BA ’46, now lives in Leisure World, a resort community close to Laguna Beach, Calif. and also close to two of her children.


Mary E. Kuhnel Conroy, RN, Nursing ’52, wrote from Missouri City, Texas to say that she and her husband, Richard, celebrated 51 years of marriage. They are both in excellent health and hiked the Canadian Rockies last summer. They had three children, one a navy pilot who died in a crash in 1980, and five grandchildren. The oldest started college this year. She remembered Sister Mary Elizabeth (Clarence) Joyce, CCVI and her sister, Sister Finbar Joyce, CCVI. Sister Finbar taught her humanities in 1950-51.

Mary Wendelyn (Wendy) Waters Laughlin, BSN ’53, and her husband, George, came back to Texas last Nov. 11-13th from Cincinnati to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary with members of their wedding party who live here. They also visited San Antonio and a dear friend, Sister Theodosia Conroy, CCVI, BSN ’49. Anna Louise Hans, serving as reporter, sent the following: “We had a very nice get together. I think the nice turnout was due to the fact that several of us have celebrated or are celebrating 50th wedding anniversaries, and several of us too, are celebrating the 50th birthday of our firstborn. Nine members of the class attended including: Wendy Waters & George Laughlin (Cincinnati, Ohio, married on 11/27/54); Wendy’s sister,

Wanda Waters Neatherly; JoAnn Hirzel & Don Ferguson (Austin, married on

7/54); and their son and his wife, Neil and Theresa Ferguson; Margie Hoffmann Wright (San Antonio, married on 2/54) (Her husband Burl Wright has had some health problems which precluded him from coming); Barbara Tate & Bob Hoffmann (San Antonio, married on 10/3/1953); Anna Louise Tschirhart & Harold Hans (Austin, married on 1/10/54); Annie Garza & Richard Morales (Houston, married in 1953); Vertice Hercek & Arthur Hill (Cotulla, married in 1959); Millie Klecka Hovenden (Montgomery, TX) and Sister Mecthilde Goertz, OSB(Boerne). And of course, Anna Louise [Easy] and Harold Hans.

We met at Marie Calendar’s for dinner, after which we went to Joann & Don Ferguson's home for dessert. We were entertained with a wonderful video that their son, Neil, had prepared as a surprise for their 50th wedding anniversary in July. He had put together still and movie pictures of their years together, plus some current video segments which he had obtained from family and friends. It was accompanied by appropriate music selections; it was so well done, it seemed like a professional production. Wendy's sister, Wanda Neathery, joined us for dinner Friday night; and Sister Mecthilde's sister, Alice Beck, had breakfast with us on Saturday. Both live in the Austin area.

When you have a chance to talk to alumni, please tell them that e-mail is a wonderful way to keep in touch with classmates. It saves on your telephone bill; keeps you in closer touch because you're more likely to send an e-mail even though it might be short, but you'll do it more frequently.

Julianne Poth Semmes, BS ’53, wrote after hurricane Ivan hit the Florida panhandle: “We lost our dock, suffered some roof damage, got about an inch of water downstairs, got more than a foot of water in the garage…totaled my car. Overall we did far better than many of our neighbors. This area was hit very hard. Help from other areas has been extraordinary. Gov. Jeb Bush has been on top of things. FEMA, Corps of Engineers, Red Cross, and others have been responsive. Lots of heavy equipment from all over is doing a great job of removing debris. There is a continual pile, broken only by driveways seven feet high from one end of our street to the other. Some houses gutted from end to end, some completely destroyed or moved off their sites altogether. Our first large pile was removed last night. Our parish has been superb in rendering assistance.

They financed at least one elderly couple’s expenses to relocate. Neighboring St. Anne Parish hosts FEMA and is a clearinghouse for the needy. Lots of sad cases. Gives you an idea of how much more the Haitians are suffering.

Dr. Mary Michaels Pohlmann,’65, published an article “Hormones, Menopause and Swimming Performance” in the Nov.-Dec. 2004 issue of SWIM Magazine and presented a paper at the October 2004 FINA World Sports Medicine Congress in Indianapolis, IN.

Gloria Trippe Grainge, BSN ’57, represented UIW on Oct. 23, 2004 at the inauguration of Dr. Francis M. Lazarus, the seventh president of the University of Dallas. Gloria earned her MBA at the University of Dallas.

Gigi Clancy Starnes, IWHS ’59, kept the Incarnate Word tradition going. Her daughter, Cathy, earned her MBA in ’97 and PhD ’04, from Incarnate Word and her youngest son, Jason Clancy, earned his BAAS through the ADCaP program in’03, and is now in the master’s degree program. Also, Jason’s wife, Toby, is also in the ADCaP program and well on track for her degree in education.


Doris Metzger, BA ’60, reported the peaceful death of her mother last year at age 97. In May and June she enjoyed an extended trip to Turkey and was awed by the beauty of the country and the warmth of the people. She plans a return visit. In August she did something different, visiting northwestern Pennsylvania and joining 10,000 people in the Society for Creative Anachronism in reliving medieval times. Doris says she is so grateful to Incarnate Word for the tremendous influence on her life and misses the departed artists who were so much a part of her life.

Dr. Mary Ann Klein, BA ’65, was awarded the 2004 City of Quincy Arts Award in the category of Volunteer Leadership. Mary Ann is a professor of English at Quincy University in Illinois where she, and her husband Joseph Messina, have been for many years.

Mary Kay Grant Kreszenzia, BSN ’65, is taking dance at the University of Washington and is on the home team of nurse counselors for Sykes Health Plan Services. She has taken her computer home and is able to enjoy triage work which she does from the comfort of her own home. “It is beyond wonderful.”

Dr. Josephine Keenan Chappell, BSN ’66, is planning on retiring in June. “This has been an exciting year for me; I was selected as the School Nurse Administrator of the year for the state of California. My portfolio has been forwarded to the National Association for consideration at that level. Dec. 7, 2004 was declared Dr. Josephine Chappell day for the County of San Diego given to her in a proclamation from the County Board of Supervisors. My husband is fine and all our boys are in fields of science and apparently love the research.”

Flor de Maria Garcia-Wukovits, BA ’66, received her Ph.D. from UIW in mathematics in December 2004.

Edna Ernestine Starr Quirollo, BS ’68, wrote from Eureka, Calif. with the news that she is in the new release of Who’s Who Among High School Teachers. She teaches two classes on introduction to medical professions and arranges shadowing and internships at St. Joseph Healthcare where she works as a medical laboratory technologist. She has been teaching these classes in high schools for the last three years and all of her seniors have entered college with a medical career in mind. She also has a phlebotomy program approved under California phlebotomy regulations. Her son is now a social sciences teacher at JFK High School in Sacramento. Her husband of 36 years has retired and is now working on her to retire as well.

Ellen G. Kennedy Franckowiak, BA ’69, and her husband, Kenneth, used the two tickets they won from Alamo Travel in Sweepstakes ’04 to travel to New York and then a cruise on the Rotterdam of the Holland America Line.


Georgie Coleman McAteer, BA ’70, Chief, Battle Command Training Branch in Fort Hood, Texas. “Since we have had one division and our Corps deploy, I have been doing our Branch chief job - managing the Battle Simulation Center, Close Combat Tactical Trainer - and other such “training enablers.” It has been interesting. . . I occasionally feel a bit like a stage manager as we host mission rehearsal exercises, and complete with Iraqi Americans role playing village mayors and “news crews” complete with cameras interviewing the soldiers in our hallways.”

Mark and Ludmilla Hamilton Oestreich, BA ’68 [far right] with their family at their son’s wedding in San Francisco last June. [L-R] son, Adam and his wife, Justine and Nathan and Diana, the bride and groom.

Mary Margaret Frost Contie, BA ’71, is the new director of the Early Learning Academy at Avance in San Antonio.

Araceli [Lita] Hunter Krohn, BA ’71, served as Belize’s Director of Culture and is presently Coordinator of the Museum of Belize Project, while still managing the House of Culture/Government House and teaching Belizean history part-time. In 2001, she authored a book of poems and pictures called Pink Dust.

Karen Ottis Murray, BA ’73, represented UIW at the inauguration of David W. Leebron as the seventh president of Rice University in Houston last fall. Karen is a Treasury Assistant at Houston Baptist University. She said the ceremony was quite impressive.

Jean Huth Leinbach, BA ’75, earned her M.A. in psychology from Trinity University and after that was in the practice of psychotherapy for many years in Dallas and San Antonio. She also enjoyed working with dogs and also took courses and workshops in animal behavior and related courses. Upon retirement she became a full-time animal behaviorist and dog trainer. She says it is fun and rewarding and her new business is called Best Foot Forward for Man’s Best Friend. She also has an illustrated book published in 2002 called Dog Tales. Jean has three grown children and five grandchildren, a great blessing. She encourages the young to follow their dreams, as it is great to love what you do and watch as it grows and blossoms, while helping others, both animal and human. To order her book, call Jean at (210) 822-7415.

Sister Catherine Young, MD, BSN ’76, is the new Medical Director for the EMSS [Emergency Medical Services System] of Wichita-Sedgwick County Kansas. Her responsibility is to put together the EMS system combining the Wichita Fire Department, Sedgwick County Fire Department and the Sedgwick County EMS.

Joe Pickard, BBA ’77, relocated as a new law officer in Littleton, CO and continues to practice in personal injury, medical malpractice, criminal and family law.

His son, Jay, graduates from Pepperdine University next spring with a degree in international business and has his sights on law school. His grandfather resides at the IW Retirement Center on campus, his father is in charge of football facilities at Texas A&M and his mother is an artist. Joe, you will recall, was the SGA president at IWC.

Col. Laura V. Alvarado, USAF, BSN ’78, was the subject of an interview on Telemundo, Nov. 7, 2004, a repeat of a Hispanic Television Production that aired several months ago. She was also awarded the San Antonio Business Journal's 2004 Leadership in Public Service award and received the University of Texas at Arlington Outstanding Alumni Award for 2004 at a gala presentation on Oct.16, 2004. Laura is the Vice Commander of Brooks AFB in San Antonio.

Sarah Espensen, 8, with her Spurs Coyote, Elf Louise, and alumna mom [right] Carol Lynn Owen Espensen, BA ’78, MA ‘90 at the Light the Way on campus November 20th. It was Sarah’s birthday and she gave all her presents to Elf Louise for the poor children of San Antonio at Christmas. All 3,000 in the McDermott Convocation Center sang Happy Birthday to her spontaneously.

Edna Mae Barrera, BBA ’78, was nominated by a former student at Worth Heights Elementary School and was named to Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers. Her student was in her kindergarten and fifth grade classes and is now an honor student. She was also chosen to represent her school as Teacher of the Year. She has been at the school for 14 years.

Catherine Foster Rupinta, BSN ’78, and Hilario [Larry] Rupinta, BSN ’79, were in contact with Dr. Sara Kolb of the UIW nursing faculty in September. Catherine is a nurse consultant with the Division of Nursing/HRSA, Bureau of Health Professions. She is working with Sara and has also worked with alumna Eula Pines, MSN ’92. Larry retired from the US Public Health Service in 1992 and works full-time as a clinical nurse at the VA Hospital in Baltimore.

Margaret L. [Lou] Clair, BA ’79, MA ’89, recently retired from her position as Assistant Director of San Antonio Oasis, a post she held for nine years. Before joining the staff she was an office volunteer and was a tutor for six years, an instructor for Positive Attitudes, Positive Aging, a Person-to-Person peer, and producer of 27 Oasis catalogs. Lou also had volunteered with the St. Vincent DePaul Society and directed religious education at Randolph AFB. She also raised eight children and now enjoys 16 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren who will now have a good part of her time.


Paula Shaffer Schriedel, BA ’80, and Randy Schriedel’s daughter, Sarah, graduated cum laude on Dec. 17, 2004 from the University of Texas at San Antonio. Sarah majored in History with a minor in Russian.

Juan R. Lopez, BS ’83, MA ’89 ’03, wrote from Alexandria, VA and enclosed a copy of an article on him, which appeared in the Southside Reporter in San Antonio last August. In addition to his UIW degrees, the article mentions his MA in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College in Rhode Island. Juan, as a civilian, had also completed the USAF Air Command and Staff College designed to prepare students for future leadership roles in their working environments. Juan is a civil-service employee and has lived in Alexandria for the past five years. He started his career at Kelly AFB in 1983, then Brooks AFB, and then a move to Washington, D.C. In April of 2004 he moved to the Pentagon Renovation and Construction Program Office where he currently serves as Procurement Contracting Officer.

Paul Algueseva with his bronze work for St. Stanislaus Cemetery in Bandera, 2001.

Elizabeth D. Martinez-Perez, BBA ’84, is in her 17th year in education. She earned her Med from Trinity University in 1993 and she is now the Vice Principal of St. Anthony Catholic High School after eight years as Vice Principal of Mount Sacred Heart School in San Antonio.

Paul Algueseva, III, BA ’85, had an exhibition at MidCoast Gallery West Art FX in Rock Island, IL.. The show ran until the end of October 2004. Some of his work can be seen at:




Stacey Johnson, MA ’90, says it's all coming full circle. A former Lee High School student who went on to a standout career at San Jose State, she made the U.S. Olympic team in fencing in 1980. After her athletic career, she remained active in amateur sports administration, founding the Dreams for Youth program in San Antonio. And now, because of her accomplishments, she's gone into the San Antonio Sports Hall of Fame. Johnson was one of six named to the hall's Class of 2005 at a news conference on Oct. 19, 2004 at the Alamodome. Others named were former football player Gabriel Rivera, the late football coach Jim Wacker, former British Open golf champion Bill Rogers, former Paralympic Games medalist Ross Davis and former Olympian and distance running star Reuben Reina. The benefactor of the tribute gala that honored Johnson and her five fellow inductees on Feb. 10 is the Dreams for Youth program, the same organization Johnson founded 11 years ago. “It's a closing of the loop,” said Johnson, a five-time U.S. national fencing team championship finalist. “Early on people in this community helped me (as an athlete), and now I'm giving back.” (San Antonio Express-News, 10/20/2004.) Stacey is also the Dean of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at Palo Alto College in San Antonio.

Ann Cowan-Ozturgut, BA ’91, and her husband, Osman, had a busy year of travel and study. She plans to complete her course work and exit exams in May and then take intensive Chinese Level III over the summer to graduate with an East Asian Studies degree. Osman completed his M.A. in Teaching and started doctoral work at the University of Missouri/St. Louis. He plans to finish his coursework in educational leadership and policy studies in 2006 and then return to China to do research for his dissertation.

Larry Wynn, MA ’91, is the Dean of Ministerial Education for the Association of Unity Churches, Lee’s Summit, Mo. Speaking of his time in the Justice and Peace Program at UIW he said: “The professor was a Catholic nun with a Ph.D. in Creative Worship. She taught me how to use Far Eastern methods to improve my prayer life that just opened up a vista and opened up my prayer life. That was absolutely powerful for me.”

Amir Batubara, BBA ’92, sent an e-mail greeting from Indonesia. He owns a manufacturing company in Indonesia which produces steel structural decking, metal roofing and roof trusses and he also has joint technology with a Swedish company. He says his Incarnate Word Management and Management Information Systems principles gave him the opportunity to compete with his competitors and he has a 40% market share in Indonesia. He says that communication is essential to understanding, and that the “customer is always a king.”

Oscar J. Cepeda, BBA ’93, has worked with Drury Inns, Inc. for 11 years and is now the General Manager of the Drury Suites Riverwalk in San Antonio. He is a board member of the San Antonio Hotel Lodging Association. He married Patricia Cepeda in 1994 and they have three children, Ian, 8, Carolina, 4, and Fabiola, 2.

Ellen R. Ott, MA ’94, has coordinated the feeding program for a hot noon meal every Sunday for the homeless under the bridge at Nolan and McCullough Avenue in San Antonio since July of 1988. She only missed one Sunday during the flooding.

Dr. Susan Wilkinson, MSN ’94, completed her Ph.D. in Nursing at UT Austin in May 2003. While there she focused on Adult and Women's Health and had a NIH/NINR institutional pre-doctoral fellowship in Women's Health she was privileged to work on a funded research study with Dr. Loraine Walker. As a result of her work on that study she had just published an article in the Journal of Nursing Scholarship on Physical Activity in Low-Income Post Partum Women. She has two other articles “in press” in the Women's Health Journal. She is now an Assistant Professor and Graduate Advisor at Angelo State University and teaches in the master's program.

Dr. Harris Ty Leonard, BA ’96, graduated last May from St. Mary’s University with a Ph.D. in Counseling. In January of 2004, he was hired by the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor as a full professor. He teaches graduate counseling, psychology classes and serves as the Clinical Coordinator for the graduate internship programs. He also teaches undergraduate psychology classes.

Margaret Montalvo-Garza, BBA ADCaP ’98, was promoted to Public Relations Coordinator for H.E.B. in San Antonio.

Irene D. Phillips, BA ’98, is an Associate Producer/Director with WOAI-TV in San Antonio.

Sean DeGarmo, RN, BSN ’99, is engaged to Sandra Brown, RN. They plan to marry July 8, 2006 after he graduates from the ENP/CNS program at UTHSC-Houston. He is currently working as a flight nurse in the Houston area.

Irving Carlos Emilio Gomar, BBA ’99, a development economist, visited the campus from Germany in November. He was in San Antonio for a month doing research.

Leticia Marie Gutierrez-Ledesma BA ’99, married in November. Her husband is a firefighter with the USAF and stationed in New Mexico. She is currently teaching Special Education and is living with their daughter, Jaelin. They have two other daughters named Jenesis and Julianna. Leticia graduated in December 1999 with a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies and is still working on two master’s degrees, one in Education and the other in Business Administration. They plan a summer honeymoon in Hawaii.

Jonathan S. Thompson, BA and BBA ’99, whose stage name is Jonathan Charis, got his first taste of filming while helping to produce a video for Incarnate Word with another student on healthy eating for incoming freshmen. After appearing in a play and having a taste of acting, performing in movies and commercials in Texas, he left his position with USAA in 2002 and moved west to Burbank, California for the benefits of occasional pay and work, taking acting workshops, and doing all the things it takes to become an actor with the ultimate goal of becoming a director. Jonathan has appeared in films; in videos; on television shows; in movies as an extra; and in films with speaking parts that have won awards at film festivals. He has appeared in television shows such as “Dr. Vegas,” and has worked on movies such as the upcoming “New World” to be released in 2005. Jonathan looks so much like Colin Farrell that his own parents are confused when they see Colin Farrell on television or in the papers, and the casting director for “New World” agreed and cast Jonathan as Colin Farrell's double in New World filmed in Jamestown, Virginia. The locals who were used to seeing Colin Farrell mistook Jonathan for Farrell repeatedly in the restaurants and businesses. Jonathan uses his communications degree and his business degree in the acting business all the time.


The most recent addition to the UIW campus at Christmas is a 48-foot cut steel Nativity given to us by the Menger Hotel in San Antonio. Menger hotel Public Relations director Ernesto Malacara arranged for the gift. His son, Martin, is a 2003 graduate of UIW. The work is in four sections: Journey to Bethlehem, Shepherds in the Field, The Three Kings and The Stable of Bethlehem. It was constructed by 80 students from Fox Tech High School in San Antonio who decided to use the German art form known as Schwibbogen, in 3/16” steel rather than wood.

Mikala Gibson, BA ’00, is working in theatre in Houston and won the Giorges Award for Best Supporting Actress in the play The Piano Lesson.

Guy Wyatt Askew, M.Ed. ’01, earned a second master’s degree from Texas A&M University, Kingsville, an M.S. in Counseling and Guidance and looks forward to completing his L.P.C. and practicing counseling for the public. Guy said he would always cherish his time at Incarnate Word.

Zabrina Rodriguez Rapozo, BA ’01, is now living in Las Vegas and working at the Las Vegas Review Journal Newspaper's book publishing division, Stephens Press. As an editorial assistant she plans book releases and launch parties in exciting Las Vegas. Zabrina says, “The best part of my job is that I get paid to read books all day.”

Melissa Lowry, BA ’02, is employed as a physician’s liaison for Southwest General Hospital in San Antonio.

Austin Martin Shafer, former student ’02, is Pastoral Associate in Youth and Young Adult Ministry at St. Matthias Church in Somerset, NJ.

Emma Romo Carreon, BS ’03, Biology with a minor in Chemistry has been accepted into a prestigious medical school for Fall 2005. Her younger sister, Suzanne Carreon, BA ’04, received her Master of Arts in Administration/ Organization Development in 2004 and is currently in the process of opening her own private business. Suzanne was also accepted into two other Ivy League schools but proudly chose to stay true to Incarnate Word. They are both very grateful to Incarnate Word for providing the ethics and solid foundation necessary to conquer the world. The University of the Incarnate Word not only offered them the highest level of education but also allowed them to mature into strong women who will accomplish many things in life. “Thank you to the wonderful staff and professors for their excellent guidance. Please be assured that we, as alumni, will keep the University of the Incarnate Word in mind. Once again, thank you for keeping “THE WORD” strong and vibrant. Great job, indeed.”

Kristin Brotherman Navarro, BSN ’03, works in Labor and Delivery at University Hospital in San Antonio.

Cassandra M. Miller, MA ’04, is teaching science to eighth graders in Okinawa, Japan.