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The University of New Mexico Alumni Association
MSC 01-1160, 1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM, 87131-0001

Spring deadline: January 1
Fall deadline: June 1

Class Notes – Spring 2022

May 2, 2022 | Class News, Class Notes, Spring 2022


James V. Neely (’51 BSME, ’57 MS), Denver, Colo., has published “Beauty is My God.”



Charles M. Atkinson (’63 BFA), Würzburg, Germany, was conferred the degree of doctor honoris causa by the University of Würzburg for his research in the field of medieval music.

Michael J. Mullins (’69 BBA), Albuquerque, and his wife, Shirley Mullins, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on October 9.

Malcolm K. Shuman (’69 MA), Baton Rouge, La., along with his team of archaeologists, surveyed and uncovered a 600- to 800-year-old Native American mound, unearthing materials such as pottery, stone artifacts and tools for future study and preservation.



Virginia Sue Cleveland (’70 BAED), Rio Rancho, N.M., was inducted into the New Mexico Coalition of Educational Leaders Hall of Fame.

Anne M. Hillerman (’72 BA), Santa Fe, N.M., won the 2021 Rounders award, which is presented by the New Mexico Department of Agriculture. Given in recognition of her writing, the Rounders award is presented to those who live, promote and articulate the Western way of life.

Carla Damler Ward (’72 BS), Sandia Park, N.M., has published “The Tinker of Tinkertown.”

Jeanette J. Williams (’72 MA), Dallas, Texas, featured her artwork of cats and dogs at the Gallery With a Cause, located at the New Mexico Cancer Center.

Stanley M. Hordes (’73 MA), Albuquerque, along with his wife Helen Hordes, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on June 20.

Veronica C. Garcia (’74 BAED, ’80MA, ’03 EDD), Albuquerque, retired as superintendent of Santa Fe Public Schools after serving 48 years in the New Mexico education system.

Martin J. Chavez (’75 BUS), Albuquerque, former mayor of Albuquerque, has been appointed by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham as the state’s new infrastructure advisor.

Walter Nygard (’75 BA), Teaneck, N.J., studio manager for Frontline Paper, was one of the artists featured in “This is Not a War Story,” currently streaming on HBO Max.

Joy Harjo (’76 BA), Tulsa, Okla., has become the second person in history to serve three terms as the United States Poet Laureate. She has recently published “Poet Warrior: A Memoir.”

Richard J. Bando (’79 BSCIS), and Jeanne Bando, Venice, Fla., celebrated 50 years of marriage on July 31.



Clyde F. Aragon (’80 BA), Albuquerque, has published “Behind the Electric Iron Curtain.”

Sandra Davis Ferris (’80 MS), Edgewood, N.M., celebrated her 60th wedding anniversary with husband Charles Ferris.

Richard G. Marlink (’80 DM), Princeton, N.J., is among the newest additions to the Scientific Advisory Board of First Wave BioPharma, Inc., specializing in clinical development of treatments for gastrointestinal diseases.

Darby L. Karchut (’82 BA), Colorado Springs, Colo., won the 2021 High Plains Award for her novel “On a Good Horse.”

John A. Garcia (’83 BBA), Albuquerque, is the new secretary of the New Mexico General Services Department.

Mike A. Hamman (’83 BSCE), Albuquerque, was appointed by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham as the state’s water advisor. In this role he will be working to ensure the state’s water infrastructure is prepared for the effects of climate change and ensure the state implements responsible water management practices.

Audie E. Hittle (’83 BSEE), Aldie, Va., chief architect and chief technology officer at ManTech, an IT solutions firm, was named one of Potomac Officers Club’s Five GovCon Chief Architects to Watch.

Susan Musgrave (’83 MBA), Albuquerque, was named senior vice president of DOE Mission Support Services for Westech International, Inc.

Jesus M. Quinones (’83 MA), Albuquerque, retired after teaching Spanish for 25 years at Albuquerque Public Schools.

Mary-Margaret “Maggie” Brandt (’84 BS, ’90 MD), Oklahoma City, Okla., was named #VeteranOfTheDay by blogs.va.gov on December 16, 2021. During her military career, she received four commendation medals. Since retiring at the rank of colonel, she has served as professor and burn director at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.

Casey A. DeRaad (’85 BSEE, ’92 MS), Albuquerque, was named one of Albuquerque Business First’s 2021 Women of Infuence for her efforts in establishing NewSpace New Mexico.

Laura E. Valdez (’85 BA, ’95 MA), Albuquerque, was given the Pillars of Professionalism award by the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators.

Barbara Vigil (’85 JD), Santa Fe, N.M., retired as chief justice of the New Mexico Supreme Court after serving for more than 20 years on the bench and has stepped into her new role as secretary of the Children, Youth & Families Department.

Sandra K. Begay (’86 ASPE, ’87 BSCE), Albuquerque, was presented with the Women in Technology Award by the New Mexico Technology Council in recognition for her contributions to research, mentorship and community impact.

James C. Hoppe (’87 BA), Marblehead, Mass., vice president and dean for Campus Life at Emerson College, was given the Pillars of Professionalism award by the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators.

Kelly J. McBurnette-Andronicos (’87 BFA), Lafayette, Ind., marked the West Coast premiere of her play “The Hall of Final Ruin” at Ophelia’s Jump theatre in Upland, Calif.

Randall D. Roybal (’88 BA), has retired as executive director and general counsel of the New Mexico Judicial Standards Commission after 24 years of service.

Anna C. Hansen (’89 BFA, ’92 MA), Santa Fe, N.M., serving District 2 on the Santa Fe County Commission, was elected to serve as president of the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area.

Tracey A. Milligan (’89 BA), White Plains, N.Y., director of Neurology at New York Medical College School of Medicine and chair of the New York Medical College Department of Neurology, has been named “Westchester County Neurologist to Watch” by Westchester Magazine.



Todd Glasenapp (’90, MA), Page, Ariz., worked in the Page schools as a counselor for 22 years and is now working in community mental health as he approaches full retirement.

Sarah Z. Sleeper (’90 BA), Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., has published “Gaijin.”

Sandra S. Fahrlender (’93 BBA), and Robert Fahrlender (’97 BS), Albuquerque, have founded Hole in the Heart, a nonprofit promoting awareness of congenital heart defects.

Alice M. Webb (’93 BFA, ’03 MA), Wauwatosa, Wis., was Magpie Jewelry & Metals Studio LLC’s featured artist for the months of October and November.

Robert A. Lombardi (’94 PhD), Middletown, Pa., executive director of the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association, has been named to the National Federation of State High School Associations board of directors.

Craig A. Herrera (’95 BA), Seattle, Wash., a five-time local Emmy award-winning meteorologist, has joined Fox News Media’s streaming weather service, which launched in October.

Heather A. Dumas (’96 BS, ’00 MBA), Littleton, Colo., joined Ardent Mills LLC as chief people officer. In this role she will be responsible for human resources, internal communications and people management.

Neil Flowers (’96 MA), Los Angeles, Calif., has published “Polyphonic Lyre.”

Lesha D. Harenberg (’96 BS), Albuquerque, teacher at El Dorado High School, received the Golden Apple Award. She has taught at El Dorado for more than 20 years and in 2011 founded a clothing bank at the school.

Matthew K. Montano (’96 BA), Bernalillo, N.M., began his term as Bernalillo Public School’s district superintendent on August 1.

Danielle A. Duran (’97 MBA), Los Alamos, N.M., is the new Intergovernmental Affairs manager for Los Alamos County.

Peter W. Gutowsky (’97 MCRP), Bend, Ore., has stepped into the role of Deschutes County Community Development director and will oversee the county’s land use, code compliance and watewater systems.

Dana M. Northcutt (’97 BA, ’02 MS), Indianapolis, Ind., long-time Commissioner of Officials for the New Mexico Activities Association, has begun her new role as director of Officiating Services for the National Federation of State High School Associations, based in Indianapolis.

David Herrera Urias (’97 BA, ’01 JD), Corrales, N.M., attorney at Freedman Boyd Hollander Goldberg Urias & Ward, has been nominated to serve on the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico.

Tyanna L. Lovato (’98 BS, ’14 PhD), Albuquerque, was named one of UNM Advance’s 2021 Women in STEM award winners.

Howard L. Kaibel III (’99 BUS, ’02 MFA), Albquerque, has joined M’tucci’s Restaurants as brand manager and minister of culture.

Marsha D. Kuhnley (’99 BA, ’03 MBA), Albuquerque, has published “Assault on the Afterlife.”

Mina Le Liebert (’99 BSHE, ’00 MS), Colorado Springs, Colo., was named one of 2021’s Women of Influence by the Colorado Springs Business Journal for her work in the public health field.



Bidtah N. Becker (’00 JD), Fort Defiance, Ariz., was appointed by California Gov. Gavin Newsom as deputy secretary for Environmental Justice, Tribal Affairs and Border Relations at California’s Environmental Protection Agency. A member of the Navajo Nation, Becker has become known as one of the nation’s leading tribal environmental justice practitioners.

Freddie J. Bitsoie (’00 AALA), Gallup, N.M., has published the cookbook, “New Native Kitchen: Celebrating Modern Recipes of the American Indian.”

Joshua Brown (’00 BA), Albuquerque, a graduate of the Albuquerque Police Department’s 82nd cadet class, has been promoted to deputy chief and will serve as commander of the Valley Area Command.

Alfredo V. Moreno ('00 BA), Beaverton, Ore., was elected to the board of directors for the Tualatin Hills Park & Recreation District, the largest special park district in Oregon.

Virginia Urias-Sandoval (’00 BA, ’16 MA), Albuquerque, is chief of staff for the executive vice president for UNM Health Sciences. She was previously executive director of the Executive and Professional Education Center at the UNM Anderson School of Mangagement.

Briana H. Zamora (’00 JD), Albquerque, former New Mexico Court of Appeals judge, has been named to the New Mexico Supreme Court.

Christopher D. Arndt (’02 MD), Albuquerque, was named chair the Department of Anesthesiology & Critical Care Medicine in the UNM School of Medicine.

Patricia Dominguez (’02 BS), Bernalillo, N.M., has been appointed the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development director for New Mexico.

Chad Ray headshot

Chad Ray (’02 BS), Dallas, Texas, has been named partner at the law firm of Carrington, Coleman, Sloman & Blumenthal, LLP.

Kee J. E. Straits (’02 MA), Albuquerque, founder and CEO of Tinkuy Life Community Transformations, has been hired by Bosque School as director of equity, community and culture.

Andres K. Calderon (’03 MBA), Lubbock, Texas, has retired after 20 years of federal government service, including positions as a Foreign Service officer for the Department of State, program analyst for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Inspector General and Peace Corps volunteer in Kenya.

Wade Jackson headshot

Wade L. Jackson (’03 JD), a lawyer with Sutin, Thayer & Browne, was voted the Best Corporate Attorney in the Albuquerque Journal 2021 Readers’ Choice selection. He currently serves as chair of Sutin’s Commercial Practice Group.

Megan E. McCoy-Vialpando (’03 BSN), Rio Rancho, N.M., has joined the Prebyterian Medical Group’s team of certified nurse practitioners.

Lisa M. Mercado (’03 BS), Albuquerque, certified physician assistant, was hired by Lovelace Medical Group in the Emergency General Surgery department.

Candace A. Sall (’03 MA), Columbia, Mo., is the new director of the Museum of Anthropology and American Archaeology Division at the University of Missouri.

Katie V. Williams (’04 BA), Albuquerque, associate director of the UNM Alumni Relations Office, was recognized with the Gerald W. May Outstanding Staff Award for her significant contributions to UNM.

Ryan M. Lacen (’05 BUS), Albuquerque, wrote and directed “All the World is Sleeping.” The film explores the struggles of a New Mexican mother struggling with addiction.

Erica T. Lujan (’05 BSED), Los Lunas, N.M., joined Lovelace Medical Group’s Westside Hospital Sleep Center.

Angelica M. Bruhnke (’06 BBA), Rio Rancho, N.M., was named one of Albuquerque Business First’s 2021 Women of Influence for her work as president of RS21 Health Lab.

Jai McBride Calloway headshot

Jai McBride Calloway (’07 BS), has joined consulting firm Exude, Inc., as a director of diversity, equity and inclusion with a focus on strategy, policy and training.

Amanda C. Chavez (’07 BSED), Santa Fe, N.M, was named Santa Fe Public School district’s new special education director.

Judy A. Liesveld (’07 PhD), Edwardsville, Ill., has been appointed dean of the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Nursing after years of service at the UNM College of Nursing.

Elaine P. Lujan (’07 JD), Albuquerque, previously with the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office, has been appointed judge in the Second Judical District Court.

Jennifer M. Gill (’08 BBA, ’14 DM), Albuquerque, board certified obstetrician and gynecologist, has been hired by Prebyterian Medical Group.

Jesse Hale headshot

Jesse D. Hale (’08 BA, ’13 JD), a lawyer at Sutin, Thayer & Browne, has been appointed to serve as co-chair of the American Bar Association Health Law Section’s Membership Committee. He most recently served two consecutive terms as one of the ABA committee’s vice chairs.

Shannon E. Kunkel (’08 BA), Albuquerque, is the new executive director for the New Mexico Foundation for Open Government, a nonprofit organization that seeks to defend transparency and open record laws in the state.

Melissa Nunez (’08 BBA), Albuquerque, advisor at CLA Wealth Advisors LLC, was named one of Albuquerque Business First’s 2021 Women of Infuence.

Aaron B. Zimmerman (’08 BS), Austin, Tex., assistant professor with the University of Texas at Austin, was honored with the Teaching Excellence Award in the College of Natural Sciences.

Rachel A. Balkovec (’09 BS), Tampa, Fla., was named manager of the New York Yankees’ affiliate Tampa Tarpons.

Sarah Sayles (’09 MA), Safford, Ariz., has begun her position as executive director of the Gila Watershed Partnership of Arizona, a nonprofit organization seeking to improving the water and ecological condition of the surrounding region.

Deborah R. Stambaugh (’09 JD), Alexandria, Va., joined the litigation department at Wisler Pearlstine, LLP.



Christie L. Abeyta (’10 BAED), Española, N.M., is the new superintendent for the Santa Fe Indian School.

Cameron M. Decker (’10 BAFA), Arlee, Mont., is educator and outreach coordinator at the Missoula Art Museum, responsible for developing art education programs and implementing statewide distance learning sessions.

Diana V. Martinez (’10 BA, ’17 MPH), Albuquerque, was recognized with the Gerald W. May Outstanding Staff Award for her significant contributions to UNM during her time with the Health Sciences Learning Environment Office.

Jodi E. Shadoff (’10 BA), Orlando, Fla., competed in the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics respresenting Great Britain in women’s golf.

Sean P. Ward (’10 BA), Albuquerque, is executive director of the Democratic Party of New Mexico.

Matthew J. Armijo (’12 BA), Santa Fe, N.M., has joined the Montgomery and Andrews law firm in Santa Fe, specializing in environmental law, commercial disputes, products defects, construction defects, oil and gas litigation and personal injury.

Justin Greene headshot

Justin L. Greene (’12 BBA), has joined Sutin, Thayer & Browne as an associate attorney. As a member of the firm’s Litigation Group, he practices primarily in the areas of employment law and commercial litigation.

Jessica R. Martin (’12 JD), has joined Sutin, Thayer & Browne as an associate attorney in the firm’s Litigation Group, focusing on commercial litigation. She is fluent in Spanish, providing written and oral communication in Spanish and English for clients.

Claudia Sanchez (’12 MA), Albuquerque, has been promoted to director of marketing and policyholder services by New Mexico State Mutual.

Emily B. Allen (’14 MBA, ’14 MEMBA), Corrales, N.M., chief financial officer of Dekker/Perich/Sabatini, was named one of Albuquerque Business First’s 2021 Women of Infuence.

Grant A. Burrier (’14 PhD), Stow, Ohio, is visiting associate professor in the Department of Integrative and Global Studies at Worcester Polytechnic Institutute.

Manon K. De Roey (’14 BA), Albuquerque, competed in the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics respresenting Belgium in women’s golf.

Rhiannon L. Samuel (’14 BA), Albuquerque, executive director of Viante New Mexico, was named one of Albuquerque Business First’s 2021 Women of Influence.

Samuel D. Saunders (’14 BBA), Albuquerque, won the L&J Golf Championship, hosted by Jenning Mill Country Club in Watksinville, Ga.

Chanel R. Wiese (’14 BBA, ’18 MBA), Albuquerque, was named one of Albuquerque Business First’s 2021 Women of Infuence in recognition of her leadership in launching the Somos Unidos Foundation.

Noe Astorga-Corral headshot

Noe Astorga-Corral (’15 BA, ’19 JD), a lawyer with Sutin, Thayer & Browne, has become licensed to practice in the Navajo Nation. Astorga also heads Sutin’s Committee on Equality, which works to tangibly empower marginalized communities in New Mexico. He is fluent in Spanish.

Django Lovette (’15 BA), represented Canada in the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics in the high jump and finished in 8th place.

Julie A. Morrison (’15 BA), Albuquerque, was recognized with the Gerald W. May Outstanding Staff Award for her significant contributions to UNM in the Physics and Astronomy Department.

Xochitl Torres Small (’15 JD), Las Cruces, N.M., was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to serve as U.S. Department of Agriculture undersecretary for rural development.

Ryan Inzenga (’16 MBA), Zachary, La., has joined Luba Workers’ Comp as vice president and underwriting manager.

Aaron P. Rivera (’16 BA), Corrales, N.M., ProView Networks sports announcer, is the new play-by-play announcer at Fort Marcy Ballpark, calling home games for the Santa Fe Fuego.

Amalia Sanchez-Parra (’16 BS, ’21 PhD), Albuquerque, was named one of UNM Advance’s 2021 Women in STEM award winners.

Troy S. Lawton (’18 BA, ’21 JD), Rio Rancho, N.M., has joined the Montgomery and Andrews law firm in Santa Fe, specializing in federal taxation law, buisness law and legal writing.

Adriana E. Oñate (’18 MARCH), El Paso, Tex., was recognized as one of Mile High CRE’s “Movers and Shakers,” in honor of her achievements in architecture and design.

Christopher J. Pommier (’18 JD), Santa Fe, N.M., has joined the Montgomery and Andrews law firm in Santa Fe.

Brooke B. Sheldon (’18 BS), Albuquerque, received the Fulbright Research Award for the 2021-2022 academic year and will pursue research of the Portuguese dialects and their influence on the Lusophone world.

Alex G. Elborn (’19 JD), has joined Sutin, Thayer & Browne as an associate attorney in the firm’s Litigation Group. His practice focuses on commercial litigation, employment law and probate matters. He speaks and writes in Spanish.

Mingjie Hoemmen headshot

Mingjie L. Hoemmen (’19 JD), has joined Sutin, Thayer & Browne as an associate attorney. She joins the firm’s Litigation Group, where she practices primarily in the areas of employment law and civil rights, collections, bankruptcy and creditors’ rights. She is fluent in Mandarin Chinese.

Thatcher A. Rogers (’19 MS), Albuquerque, received the Friends of Coronado Historic Site scholarship and a grant from the University of Missouri Research Reactor Archaeometry Laboratory.



Justin D. Armbruester (’21 BBA), Sammamish, Wash., was called up in Round 12 of the Major League Baseball draft by the Baltimore Orioles.

Kristen Burby (’21 JD), White Rock, N.M., has joined the Montgomery and Andrews law firm in Santa Fe, specializing in natural resource and environmental law.

Ava Cohen (’21 BBA), Albuquerque, represented Israel in the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics in the 300-meter steeplechase.

headshot for Amanda Cvinar

Amanda E. Cvinar (’21 JD), has joined Sutin, Thayer & Browne as an associate attorney. A member of the firm’s Commercial Group, she practices primarily in the areas of corporate law, intellectual property, public finance, estate planning and renewable energy development.


Spring 2022 Mirage Magazine Features


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