Spring 2017 – Class Notes


Annabel Crawford Willcott, A’46, C’50, Leavenworth, Kan., was honored in November 2016 for 15 years of service to the Sisters of Charity. Annabel answers the main telephone/switchboard at the Mother House. She is the mother of Sr. Amy Willcott, C’83, Leavenworth, Kan.


Sr. Martina Rockers, C’56, Roeland Park, Kan., celebrates 75 years as an Ursuline Sister of Mount Saint Joseph (Maple Mount, Ky.). A native of Garnett, Kan., Sr. Martina was an Ursuline Sister of Paola prior to the merge with the Ursuline Sisters of Mount Saint Joseph in 2008. She was elected to the leadership Council in Paola from 197882. She was an educator for 71 years in Kansas, from grade school to high school. Since 1958, she has ministered at Bishop Miege High School in Roeland Park, where she continues to serve in development, in the science department, and the spirit shop.

Dorothy Gillan, C’58, Hacienda Heights, Calif., has been a long time member of the Mountainside Master Chorale. Doris

Castaneda, C’52, Pacific Palisades, Calif., recently was a gold medalist at the 2016 USAPA Pickleball National VIII Championship. Doris won golds in women’s doubles and in women’s singles in the 80 division.


Sr. Vickie Perkins, C’65, Leavenworth, Kan., was honored at USM’s SpireFest on April 1, 2017 with the first-ever Sr. Mary Janet McGilley Community Impact Award—celebrating individuals for their incredible achievements and remarkable contributions to the local community and its people. Read more about Sr. Vickie at stmary. edu/SpireFest.

Sr. Susan Rieke, C’66, retired from Saint Mary after 37 years of teaching. To honor this occassion, her former students and the English Department hosted a two-day celebration.

Sr. Margaret Finch, C’68, Leavenworth, Kan., and Sr. Mary Lex Smith, C’71, New Orleans, La., participated in “Nuns Build in New Orleans”—an event where Catholic Sisters from across the country helped rebuild the homes and lives of Katrina survivors. Tough work—hanging insulation or drywall, mudding/spackling, sanding, texturing, priming, painting, laying floors, and/or hanging trim, doors, and baseboard.


Sr. Peg Johnson, C’71, Leavenworth, Kan., has left her post as secretary of the SCL Community after serving 12 years in the position.

Audrey Dick Theisen, C’74, Denver, Colo., is a professor in health information management at Front Range Community College.

Colette Houle Walukevich, C’75, Cumberland, R.I., welcomes the birth of her granddaughter, Chloe. Colette works as an integrated print production supervisor.

Denise “Denny” Cunningham, C’76, Effingham, Kan., and her twin sister, Debby, served as grand marshals for the 34th St. Patrick’s Day parade in Atchinson, Kan. Denny is one of the original committee members for this annual event.

Sr. Eileen Haynes, C’77, Leavenworth, Kan., received a Founders’ Day Award for her service to Cristo Rey High School in Kansas City. Sr. Eileen is among the first SCLs who served at the high school. She was director of admissions, and she has also served as a member of the board, executive committee, and academic committee. Today, Sr. Eileen is first councilor of the SCL Community Council.


Leah Robinson, C’83, Topeka, Kan., retired from the State of Kansas in January 2016.


John Harman, C’97, Fairfax, Va., began a new job as art director at Military Officers Association of America. John and his wife are happy to announce the birth of their first child, Eleanor Rae.


Angela Soper, U’08, Topeka, Kan., is currently interim principal at Bishop Elementary and will become principal of Jardine Elementary School (opening next school year, replacing three other elementary schools). Angela has served as an educator since 1994, and she has worked for USD 501 since 2002—where she began as a K-5 technology teacher, taught fourth grade at McCarter Elementary, was a literacy coach at Eisenhower, was a French middle school teacher, before becoming Landon Middle School’s assistant principal in 2014.


Ricky Cortez, U’15, Hidalgo, Texas, won election for Place 5 on Valley View School Board. Ricky plans to work on a graduate degree in physical therapy once elections are over. The local newspaper provided this quote, “It’s always the same people running for office, so I want to make a change,” Ricky said. “I want to make a difference for the community and the school.”

Megan Woods, U’15, Tonganoxie, Kan., completed her Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences at Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences this May, and she was accepted into a Ph.D. program for microbiology and molecular genetics at Emory University School of Medicine.

Velma Jean Buchanan, U’16, Fort Worth, Texas, is working as a financial project analyst for 7-Eleven’s World Headquarters in Irving, Texas.

Keeton Krause, U’16, Mañoa, Hawaii, had his first scholarly article published: “A guinea pig model of Zika virus infection.” Keeton is in his second year of the Master of Science in Tropical Medicine program at the University of Hawai’iMañoa John A. Burns School of Medicine.


Dr. Nancy King, professor of psychology for 25 years, was named recipient of the Kansas Independent College Association’s (KICA) Faculty of Distinction award on Oct. 13, 2016. The KICA Faculty of Distinction program celebrates excellence and achievement among faculty at the 19 accredited private colleges and universities in Kansas. After completing her master’s in psychology of sport and exercise physiology, Dr. King earned her Ph.D. in psychology of sport in 1991. She served as a counselor when she first came to Saint Mary and then transitioned into teaching. She was recipent of the Sullivan Award for Excellence in Teaching and Service in 1996 and inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007. Dr. King has taught Freshmen Learning Communities and Senior Integrative Experience courses, and she is an active member on the Mission Council—while also serving as co-chair of the Assessment Committee (a group of faculty and staff dedicated to creating a sustainable culture with an embedded mission as well as developing and evaluating methods to assess its effectiveness).

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