Class Notes


Mark Stevens, Alexandria, Va., retired after 45 years in education and education technology, spending nine years as school counselor at Central Kitsap School District, and two years with the Department of Defense School System in Korea. He held executive management positions at Macmillan McGraw-Hill School Publishing, Josten Learning, CNN/Turner Learning, and for the past 11 years, the National Education Association.


Judith Prest, Duanesburg, N.Y., published her third poetry book, Elemental Connections, in July, 2016. She and husband, Alan Jay Krieger, ’75, enjoy life with their three cats. Contact Judith at or


John Calamkobidis, Olympia, is senior research biologist and a founder of Cascadia Research Collective, a nonprofit research organization formed in 1979 in Olympia. John, who has studied large whales for more than 30 years, has written two books on marine mammals and more than 150 publications in scientific journals and technical reports. He has conducted studies on marine mammals in the North Pacific; serves as project manager of the Southern California Behavioral Response Study; and directed long-term research on the status, movements and underwater behavior of blue, humpback and gray whales. His primary interests are the biology of marine mammals and the impacts of humans.


Gretchen Christopher
Gretchen Christopher recording at Rog

Gretchen Christopher, Olympia, is preparing “18” her follow-up to “Sweet 16” CD, which was named Billboard Critic’s Pick for 10 Best Albums of the year in 2007.

Cheryl Fambles, Seattle, was appointed to the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco’s Seattle Branch board of directors for a three-year term. Cheryl has served as CEO of Pacific Mountain Workforce Development Council since 2012. Previously executive director of Washington Workforce Association, she is a graduate of the Senior Executives in Government program at Harvard University.  


Scott “Scotty” Kimmitt, Olympia, a master shipwright, plans on retiring after 35 years of building and repairing boats and ships, including the Lady Washington.


Jennifer Jaech, Peekskill, N.Y., is Senior Rabbi at Temple Israel in Croton-on-Hudson, New York. She is co-chair of Reform Jewish Voice of New York State, and serves on the Union for Reform Judaism’s Commission on Social Action and the Central Conference of American Rabbis’ Committee on Justice, Peace and Civil Liberties. Ordained in 2003, she earned her MA in Hebrew literature from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. She previously worked in Evergreen’s Office of the President, government relations, and politics.


Joe Jacobson, Sarasota, Fla., created the company Words and Writers and launched, an online support site for writers and authors needing help building online platforms to promote writing products. “As an Evergreen alum, I would to offer all my fellow alumni authors/writers a special gift of an author website for no setup costs.”

Steve Davis, Olympia, was selected head football coach for Olympia High School, the fourth head coach in the past 50 years of the school’s history. An Olympia High School graduate, Steve has been assistant coach at Olympia for the past 25 years, serving as assistant head coach since 2004. He earned All-State honors in 1982, All Black Hills League honors in 1981 and 1982, and All Northwest Athletic Conference honors.


The Way Back From Broken by Amber Keyser

Dr. Amber Jessen, Ph.D., Bend, Ore., published her second young adult novel, Pointe, Claw, (Lerner Publishing Group, 2017). An established author of a middle-grade book series and an anthology of non-fiction, Amber is a finalist for the Oregon Book Award for her first novel, The Way Back from Broken, (Carolrhoda Lab TM, 2015). The former ballerina and evolutionary biologist earned her master’s degree in zoology and a doctorate in genetics. 


Lillian Hunter-Ebersole, Tacoma, will run for a Tacoma City Council seat in November. A longtime educator and community leader, Lillian was a teacher and administrator at Lincoln and Wilson High Schools and served as principal of Oakland Alternative High School. She is director of alternative learning for the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. She served two terms on the Tacoma Library Board, and was appointed trustee on the Bates Technical College Board.  


Becca Albee, Brooklyn, N.Y.,  is an artist who recently exhibited a solo show “Prismataria,” at Et al in San Francisco.


Bryan Smith, Squamish, BC, Canada, an award-winning filmmaker for the National Geographic Channel, lives with his wife, Lise-Anne, and seven-year-old son, Nelson. Prior to establishing his film company, Reel Water Productions, he guided kayak tours and worked as a marine biologist in the San Juan Islands, becoming a professional at both sea kayaking and whitewater kayaking.


Michael Yates, Olympia, was recently awarded a professorship in British and American literature at Rikkyo University, Tokyo, Japan.

Melissa Greathouse, Lacey, changed the name of the consignment shop she’s owned since 2013 from The Chifferobe to Poppet Kids Resale Boutique.


Aaron Galloway,  Coos Bay, Ore., is an assistant professor at the University of Oregon, Oregon Institute of Marine Biology, teaching marine conservation biology and marine ecology. His research focuses on coastal trophic ecology of macroalgae and invertebrates.

Debora Webber, Seattle, is senior vice president and relationship manager of Commercial Lending at First Sound Bank. Debora served as a business lender for 12 years, as a relationship manager at Key Bank, and as a commercial banker with HomeStreet Bank. Debora has been recognized for her active involvement in community and civic organizations throughout the Greater Puget Sound area.


Nick Guidoux, Portland, Ore., a senior software engineer with Kavi Corporation, has worked for the same company for the past seven years, and tells us, “The concepts I learned from Neal Nelson and Judy Cushing are still relevant today. I cannot express how Judy Cushing and the Student-Originated Software course impacted my life. To this day I use what I studied at Evergreen.”

Justin Hughey, Lahaina, Hawaii, is a second- grade special education teacher at King Kamehameha III Elementary School and serves as Hawaii State Teachers Association vice president.

This Phenomenal Life

Misha Mayerick Blaise, Austin, Texas, published This Phenomenal Life (Lyons Press, 2017), a compilation of pop-science factoids, which received a starred review from Publishers Weekly. Misha was selected winner of a portfolio showcase at the 2015 Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators conference in Austin, and in 2007, she was selected to contribute to a nationally acclaimed public art exhibit in Chicago titled “Cool Globes: Hot Ideas for a Cooler Planet.” She and her husband own a green-building company in Austin.


Fleur Larsen, Seattle, a seasoned consultant in the nonprofit sector with a background in education and counseling, is a social justice facilitator with her own business, Fleur Larsen Facilitation.


Cathy de la Cruz, Brooklyn, N.Y., a filmmaker and writer, earned her MFA from the University of California, San Diego. She was a programmer for film festivals and teaches filmmaking at Venice Arts. Her films have been shown nationally and internationally.


Olivia Resnick, Vancouver, is director of Share’s Housing First, a role that includes administering Lincoln Place, which offers permanent supportive housing to the homeless. Previously, she worked at the Council for the Homeless and the Washington, D.C. nonprofit, Friendship Place.


Chad States, Rehoboth Beach, Del., is an adjunct professor teaching photography at Moore College of Art and Design. He earned his MFA at Tyler School of Art at Temple University, Philadelphia in 2007. He was Artist-in-Residence at the Philadelphia Photographic Arts Center in 2013.


Jesse Miller

Jesse Miller, Davis, Calif., completed his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and is working on his post doctorate at the University of California, Davis. Jesse, (pictured on right), is studying how herbaceous plant and lichen communities in the Sierra Nevada respond to fire severity, with a particular focus on the impacts of the high-severity mega-fires we’ve had in recent years.


Danika Parkin

Danica Parkin, Spokane, is a family nurse practitioner at Mt. Spokane Pediatrics and teaches community health nursing to undergraduate nursing students at Washington State University. She is a founding member of the Board of Directors of Salish School of Spokane, an urban native-language-immersion childcare center that is revitalizing two Plateau Salish languages. She enjoys life with her husband, Daniel Burdett, ’07, and their two children.


Jessica Bateman, Olympia, serves on the Olympia City Council while working at United Way of Thurston County. An active member of the community, she helped organize and oversaw the series, “Moving Beyond Poverty.”

Verity Swaney with bird


Verity Swaney, Bellevue, is an outreach assistant with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.


Carter Foster, Portsmouth, N.H., is social media coordinator with Calypso Communications, an integrated creative and public relations studio. Previously, he worked in communications and production at New Hampshire Public Television, where he strengthened the organization’s inbound marketing, content development, and social media strategy.

Heather Tauck, and Griffin Buell, ’11, were married in July, 2016 with a big gathering of friends and family, many of them Evergreen alumni. (see photo)

Heather Tauck and Griffin Buell wedding
Front row left to right: Lauren Ziccardi, ’11; Tori Swift, ’11; Chantal Brouillard, ’11; Kaycee Braden, ’11; Heather Tauck, ’11; Travis Hoggard, ’11; Dorey Whealan, ’05; Shala McDonnell, ’11; Max Chapman, ’11
Back row left to right: Nate Smith, Juli Kimbrel, ’11; Jane Rogers, ’09; Madeline Canmann, ’14; Matt Varchmin, ’13; Griffin Buell, ’11.


Catherine Michaelis, Shelton, was filmed for PBS by Craft in America, enjoyed a one-person show at the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art, and was commissioned to create an artist book for a show at the University of Washington, Just One Look.

Jessica Schwab, Seattle, is working toward her Doctorate of Nursing degree at Columbia University School of Nursing. She feels her “undergraduate education at Evergreen gave me the confidence, support, and resources to successfully complete a Bachelor of Science in Biology, providing the foundation for a career in healthcare!”

David Weinman, Olympia, a security research engineer with Synack, tells us, “I love my career in security research and I’ll never forget the people at Evergreen who helped me get here!”


Rhianna Hruska

Madeline Goodwin, Lacey, will run for a seat on the Lacey City Council in November. She is vice chairman of the Thurston County Young Democrats. After earning her master’s degree in environmental science at Evergreen, she teaches online and tutors.

Rhianna Hruska, Tumwater, is in the unique position of being an alumna and current student. After graduating with her MES degree, she is currently in her first year of Evergreen’s MPA program. She serves as student trustee on the Evergreen Board of Trustees, and president of the Washington Student Association.

Eli Sobylak, North Salem, N.Y., is business development analyst with ENT and Allergy Associates LLP, and tells us, “Evergreen helped me develop the skill of critical thinking that helped propel me into my dream job!”


Please note: This Class Notes section includes submissions received through April 17, 2017. The magazine cannot verify the accuracy of Class Notes and any errors they contain are the responsibility of the alumni who submitted them.

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