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Alumni Profiles

Frank Miller '60

Dr. Frank Miller ’60 and his wife, Helen, retired in 1996 from the Arlington, Va., public schools after careers in teaching and administration. In 2001 the Millers responded to an invitation to start an English language program at Ebenezer Seminary in Tampico, Mexico. At that time they were commissioned as volunteer missionaries by World Witness, the foreign mission board of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church. Since then the Millers have begun work in a slum called Colonia Solidaridad just outside of Ciudad Valles, where they have started a breakfast program for children, established a library, provided shoes and school clothing for children, and provided micro-enterprise loans.

Frank Miller

John Bohstedt '64

John Bohstedt ’64, a scholar and author who specializes in violence and revolutions, was credited for preventing additional deaths by restraining the shooter at his Knoxville church in July. Bohstedt, a Rhodes Scholar, is a history professor emeritus who retired this summer from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. In line with Cornell’s liberal arts and service tradition and his Unitarian Universalist beliefs, he says, “Evil walked into our church and hurt and killed people. But love was stronger and love will prevail. I will always be grateful that I could do what I would have wanted to do.”

John Bohstedt

John Toussaint '78

Dr. John Toussaint ’78 finds himself at the top of his profession as the newly minted president and CEO of the ThedaCare Center Healthcare Value, a center whose stated mission is to be a healthcare marketplace that rewards providers for delivering value measured in terms of best quality at the lowest cost to their customers. Toussaint, of Appleton, Wis., finds himself with this new charge after serving in much the same position for ThedaCare, Inc. from March 2000 till April 2008. There, Toussaint more than doubled ThedaCare’s revenues from $230 million to $550 million.

John Toussaint

Heather Heusinkfeld Anderson '83 & Andy Anderson '83

Heather Heusinkfeld Anderson ’83 and Andy Anderson ’83, minister in Gugulethu, a black township of more than 300,000 in Cape Town, South Africa. They say their Christian mission focus is Jesus, discipleship, and evangelism, but with 70 percent unemployment, 35 percent HIV/AIDS, and 98 percent illegitimacy throughout the town, they have run a typing school, employment/budgeting courses, tutoring, HIV/AIDS programs, family counseling, and nutrition/child rearing ministries. The couple recently initiated building a schoolroom shelter, clearing an athletics field, and providing books to an impoverished school in Manyowe, Malawi. They say their ministry work has provided them with a wonderful opportunity to carry on the ideals and practices they learned at Cornell

Andy Anderson

Leslie S. Charipar '89

Leslie S. Charipar ’89 was appointed artistic director of Theatre Cedar Rapids (TCR) in 2008. She has been involved with TCR since 1989 as an actress and, most recently, as a director, costumer, and coordinator of educational programming. She has also directed productions for the Classics at Brucemore, Coe College, the Riverside Theatre Shakespeare Festival Young People’s Intern Program, and Urban Theater Project of Iowa, which she founded. TCR was located in a historic downtown Cedar Rapids theatre heavily damaged by the flood of 2008, but with help from dedicated staff and volunteers, the 2008–09 season will go on in various alternate locations.

Leslie s. Charipar

Matt Miller '94

Matt Miller ’94 recently took home a Wally Award, fourth children’s the award named after his company’s founder, for his work as an associate creative director for Periscope, a marketing and advertising agency based in Minneapolis. The Wally is given out annually to the employee who demonstrates excellence in his or her field and exemplifies the spirit of the organization. Miller’s field is primarily brand development, and he counts Target, Boston Scientific, General Mills, Honeywell, Ingersoll Rand, Pitney Bowes, and Syngenta among his clients. He lives in St. Paul with his wife, Jen Getz Miller ’96, who runs a letterpress design boutique business recently featured in Wisconsin Bride magazine.

Matt Miller

Tricia Rongstad '96

Tricia Rongstad ’96, Farmington, Conn., is a news editor at ESPN and reports that one of the anchors—a graduate of the other Cornell—was telling a group of people that Ezra Cornell had founded two higher-learning institutions. She set the record straight by telling him the true story of the first Cornell and directing him to the “We’re not in Ithaca” page of the Cornell Web site. Tricia works primarily with SportsCenter and ESPNews on what stories to report and how to report them. She occasionally travels to events and recently attended the MLB All-Star Game.

Ticia Rongstad

Anthony Cooper '01

On April 17 Anthony Cooper ’01 and two others —a U.S. Forest Service special agent and another counterdrug pilot—were flying a routine marijuana reconnaissance in the El Dorado National Forest above a river canyon when Cooper noticed a maintenance issue with their engine. Cooper immediately aborted the mission and flew out of the canyon in search of a place to land, locating a small airport about three miles southeast of their position. However, on route to the airport, the engine failed and Cooper was forced to “autorotate” (descend without power) into a small lumber road lined with 60- to 100-foot tall trees. Thankfully, Cooper, of Grover, Calif., was able to keep the helicopter upright, and everyone walked away from the crash.

Anthony Cooper

David Lienemann '05

In an election season that promises to be historic, David Lienemann ’05 found a front-row seat early on. A gifted photographer, Lienemann took it upon himself to hit the road around Iowa in 2007 as candidates from all over the country descended on Iowa. The decision paid off, as Lienemann quickly found his photographs plastered all over the world, as the Associated Press (AP), New York Times, National Public Radio, Chicago Tribune, Getty Images, and others picked up his images. His iconic images of Barack Obama’s visit to Cornell College can still be found at presidential-candidates/obama-event/index.shtml.

David Lienemann