MSU Billings Alumni Relations

Summer 2006

Johanna Muller Anderson '42 and her husband, Andrew, recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with dinner at the Olive Garden in Billings.  Johanna is a retired teacher and Andrew a retired roundhouse foreman for the Milwaukee Railroad.  They also ranched near Harlowton and in 1998 moved to Billings.  They have four children, eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Dale Fossen '57 and his spouse, Dorothy, recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with an open house at Scobey Lutheran Church.  Dale taught school in Flaxville and Peerless, retiring in 1974 and Dorothy taught in Scobey, retiring in 1972.  They also farmed from 1964 until their retirement in 1995.  They have two children and three grandchildren.

Joan Hicks Humiston '57 and her spouse, William, recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversay at the Perfect Place in Billings and Soda Butte Lodge in Cooke City, Mont.  They have owned the Cooke Pass Cafe and Joan & Bill's Restaurant in Cooke City for the past 30 years.  They have two children, three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

John Deeney '58 and his wife, LaVonne, recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a dinner at the Olive Garden and a celebration with friends.  John was a teacher, coach, principal and college professor before retiring from the Billings school district as assistant superintendent in 1986.  LaVonne retired as business manager/school district clerk of Lockwood Schools in 1994.  They have two children and five grandchildren.

Donald Howe '64 and his spouse, Ruby, recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary at Cherry Creek Club House in Billings.  Don retired in 1993 after teaching for 39 years.  They have three children and four grandchildren.

Roger Bauer '69 and his wife Marilyn recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a family dinner at the Sheraton Billings Hotel.  Roger was a school administrator and retired in 1993; Marilyn worked for U.S. West and also retired in 1993.  They have two children and four grandchildren.

Ruth Doyle '70 was recently recognized by the Wyoming Distance Education Consortium as the Master Distance Educator for Casper College.  She has been involved in the online program at Casper College since its inception approximately 10 years ago. Instruction in all of Doyle's classes were developed by her and are writing based.

Charles Rightmire '70 has earned the Enrolled Agent status as a tax preparer with H & R Block.  Charles retired as registrar in 1993 when MSU Billings was known as Eastern Montana College.

Charles '70 and Lorene Anderson Rowland '71, '78 recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a party in Casper, Wyo.  Charles has been a teacher, ranch manager and welder and retired as owner of Advanced Hearing Aid Service in Billings.  Lorene was a teacher with the Billings school district.  They have three children and four grandchildren.

Ed Garding '71 of Billings was recently elected to the board of directors of the Montana Bankers Association.  He is executive vice president at First Interstate BancSystem.

Violet Van Sickle '71 and her husband, Harry, recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with a family reunion at a cabin on the Sun River.  They have three children, 10 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.

JoAnn Jones '73 and her husband, Kay, recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a family gathering at Chico Hot Springs in Pray, Mont.  JoAnn was a substitute teacher for School District 2 in Billings for several years then a paralegal for Towe, Ball, Enright & Mackey before retiring.  Kay is a geologist for Humble Oil Co.  They have three children and six grandchildren.

Ron Nordlund '73 has been promoted to deposit services administrator at Western Security Bank in Billings.  He was previously branch manager of the King Avenue location and has more than 25 years of banking experience.

Donna Faber '74 was named Employee of the Semester, fall 2006 at Miles Community College where she is an art faculty member.

Larry Fink '74 is the new superintendent at Hysham School where he was previously principal.

Randy Thom '74 was recognized for achieving advanced service technician level after completing an extensive training program at John Deere University.  Randy is employed at Yellowstone County Implement and is a Billings Vo-Tech grad.

Nancy VanOver '74, a school psychologist at Billings Senior High, has been named to Who's Who Among American Teachers 2006.  She developed ADHD workshops for parents and teachers and was a recipient of the Roger Eble scholarship from the Billings Education Association.

Carol Erkens '76 and her husband, Jim, recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a visit to their daughter and her family in Oregon.  Carol is a retired teacher and Jim a retired air traffic controlman.  They have four children and five grandchildren and now make their home in Red Lodge.

Brett Hoyt '80 was one of three U.S. teachers chosen for the Teacher at Sea program and will spend several weeks aboard the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's ship the Ronald H. Brown doing research off the coast of South America.  For the past 13 years Brett has been a counselor at the Yellowstone County Detention Center and instructs students seeking their GED.

Kee Dunning '82 was honored as one of the recipients of the 2007 Salute to Women by the Billings YWCA.  She is a child and family psychotherapist specializing in troubled youth.  She is also a college lecturer, clinical supervisor, PLUK trainer and NAMI volunteer.

Randy Morrison '82 has joined U.S. Bank in downtown Billings as branch manager.  He will be responsible for coordinating and managing all sales and service activities.  Randy was previously principal at Castle Rock Middle School.

Norene Peterson '82 was awarded the Inspirational Educator Award by the Montana Association for Adult and Community Education in October 2006.  Norene is a teacher in the Billings Adult Education Program.  She was recognized for outstanding service, exceptional teaching talent, longstanding involvement and dedication to the field of adult education.

Linda Robbins '82 was recently honored as a recipient of the 2007 Salute to Women by the Billings YWCA.  She was director of Family Services for 32 years, a tenacious fundraiser and advocate for Billings’ most needy.

Mike Walz '83 was this year's recipient of the Teacher in the Community Award by the Billings Education Association.  Mike is a biology teacher at Skyview High School.

Maureen Klaboe '84 was a recipient of the 2007 Golden Apple Award by the Billings Education Association.  Maureen is a counselor at Broadwater Elementary School.

Kimberly Boelter '86 has been promoted to assistant vice president and relationship manager at U.S. Bank in Billings.  She has 18 years of experience in the banking industry.

Carol Kinzel '86 has been named assistant head of school at Billings Montessori School.  She has taught at BMS for eight years and is a certified Montessori preschool teacher.  She is in the process of completing her Montessori lower elementary certification.

Elizabeth Bess (Rogers) McCollough ‘86, received a Masters of Architecture Degree from the University of Minnesota on May 13, 2006.  In addition to receiving her diploma she was selected by her classmates to speak at the College of Architecture commencement ceremonies.  She was also honored with the Alpha Rho Chi Medal for professional promise.  Elizabeth is now employed with the Minneapolis based Collaborative Design Group.  Elizabeth currently resides in White Bear Lake, Min. with her husband, Mick - EMC Class of 1985 - who teaches World Geography and coaches football at Central Middle School. 

Randy Holbrook '87 recently joined the Montana Retail Association and the Montana Restaurant Association as a sales representative.  He is responsible for membership sales as well as payroll and credit-card processing.

Sean Phelps '87, '00 has taken a teaching position at the Auckland University of Technology in Auckland, New Zealand after graduating from Florida State University with a PhD in Sport Management this past April.

Dona Holt Losett '88 is a 2006 graduate of the Pacific Coast Banking School.  She is an auditor with Valley Bank of Helena.

Becky Mateja-Lombardini '89 is a community relations coordinator for Outpatient Rehab at St. Mary's Medical Center in Portage, Ind.  She has a masters in Health Services from Indiana University.  While at Eastern Montana College she was Outstanding Senior and Academic All American Nominee for Basketball.  Her goal in her current position is to educate the public about rehabilitation, support the physician/patient/therapist relationship and ensure satisfaction and outcomes.

Paula Kubik '90 is an instructor at Dawson Community College in Glendive, Mont.  She earned her master's degree at MSU Billings.

Mary Hernandez '91 is the director for the Empowering Youth program at the Yellowstone Boys & Girls Ranch.  She will be working with 11 pre-selected organizations that work with high-risk youth in Yellowstone County to build capacity in their organizations.

Doug Mulvaney '92 has been named manager of online sales for Billings Gazette Communications.  He has been employed by Lee Enterprises since 2000, most recently as retail advertising manager with the Montana Standard in Butte.

Nicole Real Bird Cummins '93 has been named Indian Teacher of the Year by the Montana Office of Public Instruction.  Nicole has been teaching kindergarten at Crow Agency School for the past twelve years.  She teaches in both Crow and English with an emphasis on phonic awareness and reading skills.

Dulcey Eubank '93 has been promoted to business manager for Billings Catholic Schools.  Her responsibilities will include coordinating and managing accounting operations and annual and monthly budgeting.  Dulcey has been employed by Billings Catholic Schools for eleven years and is a CPA.

Aaron Roberts '93 was a recipient of the 2007 Golden Apple Award by the Billings Education Association.  Aaron is a music teacher at Will James Middle School.

Jeanie Krutzfeldt Kalotay '94 recently joined Century 21 Hometown Brokers in Billings as a realtor.  She taught in Portland, OR for 12 years and recently returned to Billings to pursue a new career.  Jeanie specializes in residential and new construction.

Kyle Brucker '95 is the software product manager for Kampgrounds of America in Billings.  He is manager of the KampSight support team along with handling the design and maintenance aspects of KampSight software.

Marc Dean '95 has joined Prudential Floberg Realtors in Billings as a sales associate specializing in residential properties.  Marc is a former Marine, has been a high school football coach and is a graduate of Connole Morton Real Estate School.

Ty Elkin '95 recently graduated with honors from the Pacific Coast Banking School.  He is senior vice president of Yellowstone Bank in Billings.

Teresa Burtell '94, '96 is the director of case management at the Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch in Billings.  She has also worked with the Yellowstone County Child Information Team and Montana's Systems of Care movement.

Tari Erfle '96 has joined Kelly Services in Billings as a staffing supervisor.  She has over five years of human resource management experience.

Nathan Haney '96 has been made partner at the law firm of Crowley, Haughey, Hanson, Tool & Dietrich in Billings.  Nathan graduated from the University of Montana School of Law in 1999 and New York University School of Law in 2000 with an LLM in Taxation.  He served a two-year clerkship for Judge Herbert Chabot, United States Tax Court, Washington, D.C. before joining the Crowley firm.  Nate practices in the commercial department of the firm's Billings office.

James Sommerville '96 was recently hired by Wells Fargo Bank in Billings as a personal banker.  Prior to joining Wells Fargo, Jim was the store director for the Lockwood IGA.

Heather Hasbrook '97 has been promoted to financial services manager at Avanta Federal Credit Union in Columbus, Mont.  Heather has been with Avanta since 2001.

David Overturf '97 of Billings had a showing of his work at Del Alma Gallery and Studio in October.  He is a part-time Spanish instructor at MSU Billings. 

Jon Sonju '97 was recently elected to his second term in the Montana House of Representatives. Sonju has been appointed to chair the House Transportation committee for the 2007 session. He resides in Kalispell with his wife, Tania (1999 MSUB graduate) and one year old son Jacob.

Janet Stokes '97 is the owner of Saguaro Food Products in Billings and markets her family's recipe for fresh salsa, DaSalsa,  to local grocery stores and restaurants.  Janet and her husband, Carl, began making the salsa in their kitchen just for friends but now use a licensed commercial kitchen they built behind their home.  They hope to be marketing statewide soon and eventually nationally.

Dan Bartsch '98 was the recipient of the 2007 Golden Apple Award for Outstanding Teaching by the Billings Education Association.  Dan teaches biology at Billings Senior High School.

Richard Hamblin '98 has been hired as the director of Therapeutic Family Support at the Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch in Billings.

Dawn McSweyn '98 has joined the office of Bliss in Montana Real Estate as a realtor.  She was previously employed by Wells Fargo Bank in Billings.

Mycale Krohne '99 has been promoted to audit manager at Eide Bailly, LLP in Billings.  She has been with Eide Bailly since 2000 and will perform audit services for health care and employee benefits and tax services for individuals, corporations and partnerships.

Amy Lethert '99 has joined Engineering, Inc. in Billings as human resources director.  She was previously employed by CTA Architects Engineers as a human resource representative and has six years of experience in the field.

Russell Nemetz '99 was recently awarded the 2006 "Amigo" Award at the Wyoming Wool Growers Association convention in Casper, Wyo.  The Amigo Award recognizes outstanding year-long coverage of the sheep industry by members of the media.  Russell is ag director for the Northern Ag Network.

Jennifer Norman '99 recently joined Hoiness LaBar Insurance in Billings as a personal insurance agent.  She previously worked for Countrywide Home Loans as a loan specialist and has a business marketing degree.

Jennifer Slivka '99 is a unit leader at Dorothy's Lodge at Yellowstone Boys & Girls Ranch.  She recently completed the Master Certification in Organizational Leadership from Villanova University.  She is a certified instructor in therapeutic crisis intervention from Cornell University.

Sally Leep '00 is the new executive director of Head Start in Billings, Mont.  She oversees a staff of 122 who serve 370 children in five preschool sites in three counties.  Leep was previously director of Tumbleweed Runaway program for the past five years and before that worked for the Yellowstone Boys & Girls Ranch.

Kaydi Muus '00 is the director of school-based services for the Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch in Billings.  She will plan and implement policies and procedures as well as provide administrative support for the therapists in the school-based services program.

Deborah C. Potter '00 has joined EideBailly LLP in Billings as a tax manager.  She has more than five years of public accounting experience and specializes in providing tax compliance, consulting and business advisory services to a diversified client base.

Kevin Rookhuizen '00 has been promoted to marketing coordinator at First Interstate Bank in Billings.  He has six years of marketing and financial services experience and will be managing marketing activities for the trust and investment side of the Bank.

Scott Wichman '00 has joined New York Life Insurance Company in Lewistown as an agent.

Rochelle Gainer '01 graduated from Creighton University in December 2006 with a clinical Doctorate in Occupational Therapy. In January 2007 began a job as a full-time occupational therapist at Colorado Plains Medical Center in Fort Morgan, CO.  Rochelle says that throughout her occupational therapy education and fieldworks she applied the health promotion training learned at MSUB toward promoting health and wellness of the whole person.

Ricki Ketterling '01 has joined Engineering Inc. in Billings as a CADD technician.  She has six years of drafting experience.

Kris Eklund '02 has been promoted to business banker at Western Security Bank in Billings.  He was previously a consumer lender for the bank.

Melissa Landon '02 has been promoted to operations manager at the Lockwood branch of Little Horn State Bank.  She has four years of banking experience.

June Robbins '02 has been named to Who's Who Among American Teachers 2006.  She is a primary grade teacher at Sandstone Elementary in Billings and was a past recipient of the Roger Eble scholarship from the Billings Education Foundation.  June was a co-developer of the America Reads K-6 Corporate Partnership Literacy Tutoring Program and the Sandstone Reading Buddies.

Jeremy Seidlitz '03, 05 is the new executive director of the Montana Cattlemen's Association headquartered in Billings.  While a student on campus Jeremy was the student government business manager and an active lobbyist for higher education. While taking graduate courses Seidlitz was employed as a graduate assistant with Leadership Montana, where he assisted in preparing grant proposals for MSU Billings and spent a semester working for the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance through Senator Baucus' office. Since graduating in 2005, Seidlitz has been working in Billings in the non-profit community helping to elect candidates to political office.   He and his wife Jenna enjoy camping and fly fishing.

Tina Simcox '02 was recently hired by HKM Engineering in Billings as a payroll technician.

Sam Van Dyke '02 has joined Intermountain Mortgage in Billings as a mortgage assistant.  He will be responsible for loan set-up and processing, documentation auditing and preparation of closing documents.  Sam was previously with Valley Federal Credit Union as an account representative.

Kyle Ellefson '03 a part-time instructor at the Montana State University Billings College of Technology was awarded a Top Ten Submission at the 2006 National Communication Association Convention, G.I.F.T.S. (Great Ideas for Teaching Speech) Division. His submission, titled “Who do you think I am? Implicit personality Theory made Explicit” was peer reviewed and selected from 126 submissions from speech instructors from across the country.

Michael Monson '03 has joined the law firm of Holland & Hart in Billings as an associate in the firm's tax group.  Michael earned his law degree from the University of Montana in 2006.

Tawyna Evans '03 recently joined CTA Architects Engineers in Billings as an accounts payable clerk.

Melisa Slunaker '03 has been named executive assistant to the president at Western Security Bank in Billings.  She has been with the bank since 2004.

DeDe Stoner '03 has been promoted to wholesale mortgage assistant at Intermountain Mortgage Company in billings.  She has 11 years of financial and real estate experience and will be responsible for underwriting loans.

Tressa Super '03 has joined S.T.E.P. Inc. in Billings as a family support specialist.  S.T.E.P. provides support to families and individuals with developmental and related disabilities.

Andrew Verhasselt '03 has joined Engineering Inc. in Billings as a CADD technician.

Wayne Williams '03 of Billings recently joined the staff of S.T.E.P. Inc., as a business development specialist.  He provides supported self-employment and leisure services that assist individuals with developmental disabilities to establish and grow their own businesses.  Wayne has several years of retail business management experience.

Tichelle Ickes '04 is teaching in Power, Mont. and has been the varsity volleyball coach for the past two years.  She has also been coaching the junior high basketball team for two years. 

Nick O'Connor '04 was recently promoted to branch manager at Western Security Bank in Lockwood, Mont.  He has been with the bank for the past two years and will continue to serve as consumer lender.

Jessica O'Donnell Price '04 is employed with the Foundation for Community Care in Sidney, MT.  Jessica and Todd Price married June 16, 2006.

Justin Wetzel '04 recently joined the Great Falls Explorers, members of the Continental Basketball Association, as assistant coach.

Steven Zeier '04 has joined the community development staff at Big Sky Economic Development Authority in Billings.  He recently earned a masters in regional and community planning from Kansas State University.  Steve will work with collaborative community projects in Yellowstone County and serve as grant writer and administor of federal, state and private grant programs.

Mike Craighill '05 and his wife, Antonia, have opened Soup and Such in Billings Heights. Antonia specializes in cheesecakes and bakes over 100 varieties.

Dani Erickson '05 was recently promoted to real estate agent with Century 21 Hometown Brokers in Billings.  She has been with the company for two years.

J.T. Essex '05 recently joined the Billings office of Interstate Engineering, Inc. as a surveyor.  He is a professional land surveyor with more than 10 years experience and previously owned and operated his own surveying company, Essex Surveying.

Melodee Mattson '05  was one of only 77 scholars nationwide selected to receive a full graduate scholarship this fall from the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, headquartered in Lansdowne, Va.  Melodee is attending the University of Aberdeen in Scotland  to pursue a master's degree in literature and hopes to one day teach humanities.  The Jack Kent Cooke graduate scholarships cover tuition, room, board, fees and books and are among the most generous academic awards offered in the United States.

Chelsea Warren '05 is teaching 2nd grade at Hysham Elementary in Hysham, Mont.

Brett Weisz '05 has passed the Microsoft Certified Professional exam and also received his A+ Server and HP certifications.  He is employed by EideBailly in Billings.

Jay Hoversland '06 is teaching at Fallon County High School.  His major was art with a teaching option.

Deborah Knudtzon '06 is a tax associate with EideBailly, LLP in Billings.  She specializes in income tax preparation and consulting.

Travis Lance '06 has been offered a job with Willamette Management Associates in Portland, Oregon as a business valuation associate.

Joseph LaPlante '06 has been hired as the Small Business Development Center Director and BEAR (business expansion and retention) coordinator for Bear Paw Development Corporation in Havre, Mont.

Georgia Lukkes '06 recently joined Western Plains Machinery Co. in Billings as a human resource manager.  She has more that eight years experience in the human resource field.

Shawn Stevens '06 has joined HydroSolutions in Sheridan, Wyo. as a hydrologic technician.  He has two years experience conducting hydrologic investigations with the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology.

Carol Toenyes '06 has joined the Billings Gazette in their classified sales department.  Her responsibilities will include customer service and personal and business classified ads.

Kellie Zeitner '06 is working for the Peace Corp in Thailand.  She will be traveling to different villages to assess community needs and then set up service projects to address those needs

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