Kenneth Bentley* [humanities ’73] was honored with the Champion of Youth award at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Venice’s ninth annual Champion of Youth Gala for his extensive support of and involvement in the club. Bentley was named a Lauds & Laurels Distinguished Alumnus in 2000.
Allen Carden [humanities Ph.D. ’77] has published a book through the University of Tennessee Press, Freedom’s Delay: America’s Struggle for Emancipation, 1776-1865, which examines the ultimately successful campaign to end slavery nationwide. Carden is a professor of history at Fresno Pacific University.
David Marrero [social ecology ’74, M.A. ’78, Ph.D. ’82] has been named president of healthcare and education for the American Diabetes Association’s board of directors. He serves as the J.O. Ritchey Professor of Medicine and directs the Diabetes Translational Research Center at the Indiana University School of Medicine. Marrero has more than 300 publications in lay and professional journals, including Diabetes Care and The Diabetes Educator. He is a 2006 Lauds & Laurels Distinguished Alumnus.
Doris C. Vernon [humanities ’73, ’74] was honored as a “literary treasure” by the Ventura County Arts Council in spring 2013. She has been a part of the local poetry scene for about 20 years and has written, by her own account, more than 2,000 poems. Vernon has self-published a book of poems titled In Secluded Recesses.
Dr. David Bazzo [biological sciences ’85] is chief medical officer of a new online educational program created in collaboration with UC San Diego School of Medicine faculty. Called Physician Retraining & Reentry, it’s designed to empower retired and inactive physicians of all backgrounds with the tools needed to return to work in a primary care setting.
Charles Harris [social sciences ’87], UCI’s first sports marketing director and a former senior executive with the Los Angeles Dodgers, was recently appointed senior vice president of marketing for the Anaheim/Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau.
Kevin Kiyan* [social sciences ’87] was promoted to executive director from senior manager at the Ernst & Young LLP tax practice in Los Angeles, where he provides transfer pricing services. Prior to rejoining the firm in 2006, Kiyan was vice president at a healthcare company in San Francisco.
Kem Nunn [arts ’81, humanities M.F.A. ’84], novelist and television writer, recently released his latest book, Chance. Nunn’s novels have been described as “surf noir” for their dark themes, political overtones and coastal settings. He and producer David Milch co-created the HBO surfing drama series “John from Cincinnati” and collaborated on the HBO Western drama series “Deadwood.”
Earl Pagal [social sciences ’85] and his Long Beach Masters dragon boat team competed in the 2014 International Dragon Boat Federation’s Club Crew World Championships in Ravenna, Italy. They posted the sixth-fastest time in the world and made it to the major classification.
Dr. Robert Wascher [biological sciences ’84], a musician as well as a surgical oncologist and chief of surgery at Cancer Treatment Centers of America’s site in the Phoenix area, released his latest song, “You Can Never Rewind,” in February. “Doc” Wascher is also the bestselling author of A Cancer Prevention Guide for the Human Race, which helps people live an evidence-based cancer prevention lifestyle.
Patty Bartlett [social sciences ’97] has been named chief operating officer of Resmark Impact Ventures. Her duties include mentorship, due diligence, corporate governance, financing and loan negotiations, dispositions, investor reporting and back-office management.
Nadia Bermudez [social sciences ’98] received the San Diego County Bar Association’s 2014 Service to Diversity Award in recognition of her commitment to promoting and encouraging diversity in the legal profession. Bermudez is a partner in the California law firm of Garcia, Hernández, Sawhney & Bermudez LLP. She’s a recipient of the 2012 Lauds & Laurels Distinguished Alumna award and the 1998 Order of Merit from the School of Social Sciences.
Rodger Blum [arts M.F.A. ’93], an accomplished dancer, ballet master and choreographer, has received a 2014 Kathleen Compton Sherrerd ’54 & John J.F. Sherrerd Prize for Distinguished Teaching from Massachusetts’ Smith College, where he’s a professor and chair of the dance department.
Shannon Eusey [social sciences ’92] is president of Beacon Pointe Advisors; is a founding member of the Beacon Pointe Women’s Advisory Institute; and serves on the board for the Orange County chapter of the Young Presidents’ Organization, the UCI Athletic Fund board of directors, and the investment committee for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange. She’s also an adjunct professor at UCI’s Paul Merage School of Business.
David Kesselman* [social sciences ’94] has helped launch a Los Angeles-based antitrust law firm called Kesselman, Brantly & Stockinger LLP. Before being named a partner in the practice, he served as an adjunct professor at Loyola Law School. Kesselman has been included on the Southern California Super Lawyers’ Rising Stars list for many years.
Shelley Kinsella [social sciences ’94] has been appointed by the directors of Elliott Greenleaf as managing shareholder of the law firm’s Wilmington, Del., office and a member of its board of directors. She’s the first female managing shareholder of a firm office. Kinsella practices in the areas of corporate restructuring, employment law and commercial litigation.
Jason Knapp [social sciences ’92] has been appointed chief product officer of Interactive Media Holdings, the Irvine-based parent company of Vindico, Specific Media, MySpace and Xumo. Knapp will oversee all product-related initiatives, including conception, development, production and product management.
Jose Marques [physical sciences ’87, M.S. ’90, Ph.D. ’93], the former global head of electronic trading at Deutsche Bank AG, has been appointed head of trading at Bridgewater Associates LP. Based in Westport, Conn., Bridgewater is the largest hedge fund in the world.
Donna Rizzo [engineering M.S. ’90] is a professor of civil & environmental engineering and the Dorothean Chair in the College of Engineering & Mathematical Sciences at the University of Vermont. She recently received the 2014 George V. Kidder Outstanding Faculty Award for excellence in teaching for her ability to ignite a passion for learning and discovery in UVM students.
Felisa Smith [biological sciences Ph.D. ’91] is a biology professor at the University of New Mexico and co-editor of Animal Body Size, published by the University of Chicago Press.
Erica Suchman [biological sciences Ph.D. ’94] has received the 2014 Carski Foundation Distinguished Undergraduate Teaching Award from the American Society for Microbiology. Currently a professor of microbiology, immunology & pathology at Colorado State University, she is an internationally recognized expert and lecturer on using active learning techniques to foster critical thinking skills while teaching science in large lecture halls.
Jaimelynne Cruz [social sciences ’09] was selected as a 2014 Hawaii State Teacher Fellow by the Hope Street Group, a national, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to expanding economic opportunity and prosperity in America. She currently teaches third grade and is the grade level chair at the Kamaile Academy public charter school in Waianae.
Adrian Cunanan [social sciences ’01] has launched ThriveTracker, a free mood tracking app that helps record key data to improve the management of moods. Cunanan’s goal is to help individuals like himself with mood disorders (such as bipolar disorder and clinical depression) achieve well-being and realize their potential to change the world. http://thrivestreams.com/
Pablo Diaz [information & computer sciences Ph.D. ’05] was on a panel of user interface design experts for Pannam Imaging. He’s a co-founder of Appfluence, maker of Priority Matrix, a software system that helps busy people manage their projects.
Dominic Fratantaro [social sciences ’05 was honored at the Irvine Unified School District’s 2014 Excellence in Teaching Awards. He’s the librarian at University High School.
Kristen Jackson [education M.A.T. ’09] was also honored at the Irvine Unified School District’s 2014 Excellence in Teaching Awards. She teaches a fifth- and sixth-grade combination class at Meadow Park Elementary School.
Rebecca Kanter* [social sciences ’00] received the San Diego County Bar Association’s 2014 Service by a Public Attorney Award in recognition of her excellence in the practice of law and service to the community, the profession, the bar association or legal education. Kanter is an assistant U.S. attorney in San Diego, a criminal prosecutor, and an active community volunteer for causes ranging from the environment to the arts.
John Manchak [social sciences Ph.D. ’09] has joined UCI as an associate professor of logic & philosophy of science. Manchak is a physics philosopher whose expertise is in general relativity and the space-time structure. His work has appeared in such venues as Philosophy of Science, Foundations of Physics and The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Physics.
Caroline Melly [social sciences M.A. ’04, Ph.D. ’08], assistant professor of anthropology at Smith College in Massachusetts, received the 2014 Kathleen Compton Sherrerd ’54 & John J.F. Sherrerd Prize for Distinguished Teaching. Melly is a sociocultural anthropologist who teaches courses on contemporary topics such as transnationalism, the Internet and urban anthropology.
Anne Michelena [education M.A.T. ’03] was honored at the Irvine Unified School District’s 2014 Excellence in Teaching Awards. She teaches fifth grade at Bonita Canyon Elementary School.
Martin Ngo, S.J. [information & computer sciences ’05] is studying comedy and improvisation at The Second City Training Center in Chicago. Ngo’s concurrent role as a Jesuit priest is unique among his Second City peers. He entered the Jesuit Novitiate of the Three Companions in Culver City in 2009.
Deepa Sethi [computer engineering ’01] was a featured member on the website of Watermark, a nonprofit organization of executive women, for her work as senior manager of Ericsson’s Global Technology Innovation program. Sethi is also a co-founder of Ericsson’s Women in Leadership group, which helps members achieve their career goals through networking, best practices, career development, and maintaining a work-life balance.
Joseph Tanious [social sciences ’03] has joined Bessemer Trust’s Los Angeles office as principal and investment strategist. Tanious is a CFA charterholder and a frequent guest on CNBC, Bloomberg and “Nightly Business Report.”
Puneet Toor [humanities ’08] joined AgnewBrusavich, a Torrance-based personal injury law firm, as an associate attorney in January. Toor specializes in personal injury, defective products and consumer fraud litigation.
Laura Vidler [humanities M.A. ’95, Ph.D. ’02] is chair of modern languages & linguistics and a professor of Spanish at the University of South Dakota. Her book, Performance Reconstruction & Spanish Golden Age Drama: Reviving & Revising the Comedia, was released by Palgrave Macmillan in December.
Jason Wang [information & computer sciences ’04] was on a panel of medical technology experts for Pannam Imaging. Wang is founder and CEO of TrueVault, which provides a secure, HIPAA-compliant API for healthcare apps to use when storing sensitive patient data.
Keith Curry [education Ed.D. ’11], CEO of the Compton Community College District, recently established a scholarship for doctoral students in UCI’s School of Education and led a campaign to pass a $100 million facilities bond for major improvements to Compton Community College. Curry is a 2013 recipient of UCI’s Lauds & Laurels Distinguished Alumnus award.
Lauren DeBellis [education MAT ’11] was honored at the Irvine Unified School District’s 2014 Excellence in Teaching Awards. She teaches English at Woodbridge High School.
Dominique Doan [social sciences ’14] received UCI’s 2014 Living Our Values Award. He directed his $1,000 prize to the Randy B. Lewis All-University Leadership Conference fund. It provides scholarships for students to attend the conference, a unique opportunity for UCI students, faculty, staff and administrators to spend a weekend together, network, hone their leadership skills and discuss important issues facing the university.
Brendan Geck [education MAT ’13] was named one of four Teachers of Promise at the Irvine Unified School District’s 2014 Excellence in Teaching Awards. He teaches history at Northwood High School.
Nithin Jilla [information & computer sciences ’13] and UCI students helped organize AppJam+, an event that mentors disadvantaged middle schoolers in application development. The youths presented their work in a November showcase held at the Business Expo Center in Anaheim.
David Liu [public health, social sciences ’13] completed a year of AmeriCorps service at Rhode Island’s Providence Children’s Museum in August 2014. As an AmeriCorps museum educator, he was part of a team that designed and implemented engaging STEM enrichment activities for 500 low-income children ages 6-12 in after-school and summer learning clubs.
Michelle Miller* [physical sciences ’80, Ph.D. ’83] has been certified as a diplomate of the American Board of Medical Microbiology – the highest credential a doctoral-level clinical microbiologist can earn.
Brenda Minjares [education M.A.T. ’14] was awarded a 2014 Knowles Science Teaching Foundation fellowship for being an outstanding early-career teacher in science, technology, engineering and/or mathematics. Minjares is a science teacher at Escondido High School.
Jill Morgan [education MAT ’14] was named one of four Teachers of Promise at the Irvine Unified School District’s 2014 Excellence in Teaching Awards. She teaches science at Sierra Vista Middle School.
Thomas Stubblefield [humanities Ph.D. ’10] recently published a book, 9/11 & the Visual Culture of Disaster, that delves into the topics of absence, erasure and invisibility. Stubblefield is assistant professor of art history at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.
William Friedman [humanities ’71] died July 26, 2013. He earned a doctorate in psychology at Claremont Graduate University in 1986, a master’s in psychology at California State University, Los Angeles in 1979, and a bachelor’s in philosophy at UCI in 1971. He is survived by his wife, Dominique Piana.
Elizabeth Ann Green [social ecology ’78] died June 10, 2012, from complications of cancer. After her graduation from UCI, she became a registered nurse and worked in labor and delivery for many years. Green is survived by her husband, Stephen Green [humanities ’78], and five children.
Tyler Lynch [social sciences ’08] died suddenly in his sleep Dec. 1, 2014. He was a musician and a promotions assistant at KROQ. Lynch is survived by his parents, Tom and Cookie Lynch; a brother, Ian; and his fiancée, Lea St. Amand. More: http://www.toacorn.com/news/2014-12-18/Obituaries/Tyler_Lynch.html
Wesley Motooka [engineering ’77] died March 19, 2014, of lung cancer. He was president of L-3 Communications Corp.’s Integrated Sensor Systems Sector and had a successful career in aerospace. Motooka was a member of the UCI Engineering Leadership Council and in 2004 was named a Lauds & Laurels Distinguished Alumnus. He is survived by his wife, Susanne, and two children, Kristen and Daniel.
Celeste Lanuza is an adjunct substitute dance faculty member at Grossmont College. Her employment status was misstated in the fall 2014 UC Irvine magazine.
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*members of the UCI Alumni Association