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Class Notes

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Andrew PhamAndrew Pham was one of 60 students nation wide selected to receive a $5,000 Phi Kappa Phi Graduate Fellowship, to be used for his first year of graduate study in piano performance at Indiana University. (6/11)


Aaron SchatzAaron Schatz is Vice President of the class of 2014 at the Medical College of Virginia. (3/11)


Nicole MartoranaNicole Martorana will be a contributing artist in the 6th show of the Instance Series Instant Photography Shows at The Artful Dodger in Harrisonburg, on display Sept. 28 – Oct. 6, 2011. (9/11)
I Almost Saw Your Face - The reopening of Nicole's photography exhibit occurred in July. (6/11) 
In September 2007, her documentary, "Changing Landscapes: Growth and Development in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County," aired in the local Court Square Theater.  The event was covered by Heather Bowser in a Daily News Record article entitled, "Focusing on Local Growth." 

Alexandra Meador has been accepted into the Law School class of 2014 at the University of Virginia. Prior to starting law school, she served as Special Programs Manager at the Cheyenne River Youth Project in Eagle Butte, South Dakota. (1/11)

Sade Namei will perform in her one-woman show, In Media Res, in the Iranian Theater Festival in Brooklyn, New York at the Brick Theater in March 2011. (2/11)

Nick, is a graduate student at the University of Virginia's School of Medicine. He resides in Charlottesville with wife Kate. (1/08)


Mary Bikowski is a registered nurse at Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters.  (7/08)

Kelly BrownKelly Brown, a Political Science major and a Writing and Rhetoric minorearned a law degree in 2009 from The College of William and Mary and currently practices disability law in Arlington, Va. She has recently joined the Honors Advisory Council at JMU. Her fiance is also a JMU graduate. (10/11)

Sarah (Heller) Calihan, married JMU alum Sean Calihan ('04) in 2006. Sarah is a first year law student at the University of Richmond, T.C. Williams School of Law. She recently participated in the Moran Kiker Brown Trial Advocacy Competition, making it to the semi-final round. Sarah was also invited to join the University of Richmond's Trial Advocacy Board. (1/08)

C. Owen, expects to complete her Masters Degree in English at the University of Georgia in May 2008. She is currently on the executive board of the Athens-based nonprofit organization, Safe Campuses Now, and editor of their magazine, The Informer. In addition, Catherine is a team leader for the student organization, Invisible Children United, and Treasure of the University of Georgia's chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, an English Honor Society. Following graduation, she plans to pursue a career in nonprofit humanitarian work, preferably associated with East Africa. (1/08)

Christina, lives in Charlottesville and is employed as a Registered Nurse in the Medical Intensive Care Unit at the University of Virginia hospital. She is taking courses at the University of Virginia in hopes of pursuing a Masters Degree in Nursing. She is engaged to Alex Menze. (1/08)


Theresa Romeo is a Senior Audit Associate at the Reznick Group.  (7/08)


Kimberly, lives in Richmond and is a Judicial Clerk at Henrico County (VA) Circuit Court. (1/08)

John Suits graduated in 2008 with a Masters Degree from the California Institute of Arts in Film Production.  His thesis film is the fourth full length feature film that John has written, directed, edited and produced. He was selected as one of the Top 10 Student Filmmakers in the U.S. and was a finalist in the MTV Student Filmmaker contest last year.  (7/08)


Justin Solomon is a corporate associate in the Chicago office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP.  He received his law degree from the University of Michigan Law School in 2006.  (7/08)


Karin Hamilton graduated from Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine in 2006.  She is currently in her third year of being a veterinarian for the US Army.  This past year, Karin was deployed to the Horn of Africa, where she helped treat over 36,000 animals.  She will be moving to South Korea for the next year to continue her work as an Army vet.  (7/08)

Nicholas Howenstein,, lives in Washington, D.C. and is a Senior Program Associate for the U.S. Institute of Peace ( (1/08)

Danielle Rockwood received her Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Delaware in 2008.  (7/08)


Matthew Armstrong received his law degree with Cum Laude honors from the University of California, Hastings College in 2006. While in law school, Matthew was elected to the Order of the Coif, was a member of the Thurston Society and Notes Editor of Hastings West-Northwest Journal of Environmental Law & Policy. He currently is an Associate at Thelen Reid Brown Raysman & Steiner LLP, San Jose, CA, where he is a member of the Commercial Litigation Department and the Environmental Practice Group. (7/08)

Russell, received a Masters Degree in Education from the University of Virginia in 2005. He has spent the last two years in El Salvador creating and developing the non-profit organization The Sister School Project, Russell married Marcela Courtade in El Salvador in December 2007. (1/08)

Melissa Dobosh,, received her Master of Arts Degree in Communication from the University of Delaware and is now working toward her Ph.D. in Organizational Communication at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. (1/08)

Jennifer Beth, teaches students with multiple disabilities in the Harrisonburg school system. Jennifer is completing a Masters of Education program at Eastern Mennonite University. (1/08)


Tracy (Lambert), recently completed her Ph.D. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from the University of Georgia. She is currently employed as Assistant Professor of Management and Accountancy at the University of North Carolina - Asheville. Tracy lives in Hickory, North Carolina, with husband Christopher. (1/08)


F. Jason, is a Graduate Research Associate at The Ohio State University's College of Medicine. He resides in Columbus, Ohio with wife Erin. (1/08)

Remy, lives in Largo, Florida and is a Mapping and Education Specialist for JMU's Virginia Energy Consortium (VCERC). (1/08)

Erin Snider, received an MSc degree from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London.  She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Social and Political Science at Trinity College, Cambridge University.  (7/08)

Elise (Toomey), is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Substance Abuse Professional employed with an employee assistance program. Elise's family includes husband Christopher and daughter Juliana. A second child is due summer 2008. The Merendas reside in Downingtown, Pennsylvania. (1/08)

Christina Ulllo lives in New York City and is employed as a Labor Relations Attorney with the New York State Unified Court System. (1/08)


Lauren (Bronich), earned her Masters Degree in Health Sciences with concentration in Healthcare Administration in 2004 and is currently Director of Education at WellDoc Communications, Inc. Lauren lives in White Marsh, Maryland with husband Daniel. (1/08)

David, resides in Brooklyn, New York, with wife Deirdre O'Connor. David is a theater director, His recent adaptation of HMS Pinafore was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Revival of a Musical. He has a Masters of Fine Arts Degree from Columbia University. (1/08)

Hillary, resides in Washington, D.C. and is a Planning Manager for the U.S. Department of State. (1/08)


Matthew Kellermatthew.1.keller@gmailcom, married fellow JMU honors graduate, Jill (Walworth) Keller ('99) in 2006. The Kellers live in Oakton, Virginia, where Matthew is a Business Unit Manager at Corsec Security, Inc. Matthew also sits on the Advisory Board for the Institute for Infrastructure and Information Assurance at JMU's College of Integrated Science and Technology. (1/08)


Cara ModisettCara Modisett ('96,'98), is editor of the award-winning Blue Ridge Country magazine,, and is a producer and reporter for WVTF public radio. Her radio interviews have included journalists Sam Donaldson and Ted Koppel, poet Nikki Giovanni, author Sharyn McCrumb, and performers Joan Baez, Bela Fleck, Bill Frisell, Edgar Meyer, Sam Bush, and Chick Corea, among others. Cara remains active as a musician and has made a number of recent chamber music appearances. Cara is a member of the JMU Honors Advisory Council. She and her husband Phil Atkins reside in Roanoke. (1/08)


James Owens is an associate in the Washington office of Sidley Austin LLP.  Prior to joining Sidley, he was associated with another law firm, clerked for the Honorable Danny J. Boggs, Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and was a Temple Bar Scholar.  He focuses his practice in civil, criminal, and constitutional litigation.  He is a graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law, where he was an editor of the Virginia Journal of International Law, was awarded the Hardy Cross Dillard Prize for his student note, and was elected to the Order of the Coif.  He earned a Master's degree and a Ph.D. in European history from the University of Virginia.  (7/08)


Catherine Sherman's chapbook of poems, The Fox and the Sunflower, is soon to be released by Finishing Line Press, based in Georgetown, Kentucky.   (7/08)


Wendy, is Assistant Managing Editor of the Philadelphia Daily News. Wendy, husband Daniel Robinson ('92), and daughter Sarah Margaret live in Havertown, Pennsylvania. (1/08)


Donna MartinDonna Martin was one of five recipients statewide to receive the 2010 Roy J. Ward Employee Leadership Recognition Awards for outstanding service and contribution to the field of vocational rehabilitation (VR) and the disability community.  Martin has served as a VR counselor for the Virginia Department of Rehabilitative Services since September 1992, working with youth and adults with disabilities in Patrick County and the City of Martinsville.  In addition to her regular duties, she developed a Job Seeking Skills program with Patrick County Schools and has been active in the Workforce Investment Area 17 Youth Program.  She was also instrumental in the development of the Blue Ridge Southwest Ethics Services Committee.  The award was presented by the Virginia State Rehabilitation Council at a ceremony held May 2010 in Richmond.  The SRC Employee Leadership Recognition Award honors select VR staff who have distinguished themselves not only by the quality of service they provide to VR clients, but by their contributions at the national, state, or local level to advance the employment and independence of people with disabilities.  Each of the recipients actively serves on boards and organizations.  They provide expertise and leadership in community or agency-based initiatives that enhance VR services and develop future leaders of VR.  The award is named after Roy J. Ward, a long-time leader in the disability community, former member of the SRC and former chair of the DRS Board.  (Posted 6/10)


Ken DriverIn February 2006, Kenneth Driver returned to JMU to give a lecture on current changes in energy law and policy. A full report was featured in the Daily News Record article, "JMU Alumnus Discusses Energy Policy" by Lee Zion. He currently serves on JMU’s Honors Advisory Council. (9/11)

Sharon (Glesner), is a full-time mom in charge of organizing the Brown family, which includes husband Barry and sons Dustin and Trevor. The Browns reside in Louisa, Va. (1/08)


Chris Holmes received a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Virginia in 1993 and graduated from the University of Virginia School of Medicine in 1997.  Chris is currently Assistant Professor in the College of Medicine at the University of Vermont, where she leads a platelet translational research laboratory program focused on the delineating the role of activated platelets in cancer, angiogenesis and thrombosis.  (7/08)


David, is Professor of Marine Affairs and Economics at the Univeristy of Miami. David resides in Key Biscayne, Florida with wife Erin Marcus and children Zachary and Amelia. (1/08)


Judith (Sampson), is an RD, DCE, and CDN at Winthrop University Hospital. Judith lives in Woodbury, New York. Her family includes husband Eric and sons Jason and Ryan. (1/08)


Olin, a charter member of the Madison College Honor Society, received his Masters Education Administration Degree from Madison College in 1976. Now retired, Olin spent most of his career teaching (Broadway High School, Broadway, VA; Franklin High School, Franklin, WV) and as an administrator (Pendleton County Board of Education, WV) in the public school systems of Virginia and West Virginia. He currently resides in Brandywine, WV with wife Donna and enjoys traveling, hunting/fishing, and spending time with grandchildren Ty and Carrie, among other things. (1/10)