Alumni Class Notes & Club Highlights


Clyde Berger ’51 was selected to be on an Honors Flight from Florida to Washington, D.C. on Sept. 17. These flights honor veterans of WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. Clyde served in the Navy from 1951 to 1953.


Judy Schuerman ’57 Rullman and Melvin Rullman ’57 received the Walter E. Neiswanger Lifetime Achievement Award, recognizing their commitment to Habitat for Humanity Quad Cities.

Judy Schuerman ’57 Rullman and Melvin Rullman ’57 received the Walter E. Neiswanger Lifetime Achievement Award, recognizing their commitment to Habitat for Humanity Quad Cities. Judy and Melvin are regular volunteers at local build sites and have gone on seven global mission trips. Valpo is quite prominent in the Rullman family — Melvin and four of his siblings attended Valpo and two of Melvin’s children are Valpo graduates. Judy and Melvin are known to talk incessantly about Valparaiso University, O.P. Kretzmann, and the influence of both in their lives.


Vic Huggard ’62 was elected a lifetime member of the Maple Avenue Fire Company and the Greenfield Fire District in Saratoga County, N.Y. in recognition of his 15 years of service as a volunteer firefighter, emergency medical technician, and fire police officer. He was also elected a lifetime member of Wilton Emergency Squad Inc. for his 15 years of service as an emergency medical technician and squad officer, providing medical and ambulance service to the residents of the towns of Wilton and Greenfield in Saratoga County, N.Y. Vic continues to serve as board chair and chief executive officer of Wilton Emergency Squad Inc.


Lois Jean ’64 and Danley Schumann ’64 hosted the 2016 reunion of a group of Valpo Pi Kappa Alpha alumni and their wives in Des Moines, Iowa in August 2016. This group of Pi Kappa Alphas are graduates of the 1960s and have been meeting annually throughout the country for more than 20 years. 1


Jay Christopher ’67 hosted Kappa Psi Omega alumnae from the classes of ’69, ’70, and ’71 at the Christopher Farms and Gardens, a 400-acre property with 50 acres of composed botanical gardens near Sheboygan, Wis., on Saturday, July 9. With the assistance of Paul DeLassus ’70, the women were given a private tour of the property, which stretches a mile along the shores of Lake Michigan, while Jay answered their questions. These women had gathered every summer for the past eight years at the lakeside home of Judy McNabney ’71 Dutton and John Dutton ’70 in Wautoma, Wis. The group made a donation to the Sheboygan area Meals on Wheels, a favorite charity of Jay’s, to thank him.

Kurt W. Landsberg ’67 lives in Murrysville, Pa. with his wife, Anita. Kurt and Anita have three children, Alysia, Kurt J., and Michael. Kurt and Mike live nearby, while Alysia resides in Des Moines, Iowa. They enjoy spending time with their three grandchildren, who also live nearby. Kurt retired as director of Flat Rolled Products Technology for Alcoa in 2012 after 43 years of dedicated service. He is now busy traveling to Cape Cod to visit and take care of his mom, who resides in assisted living, taking vacations, and working around the house. Recently, Kurt and Anita visited the Valpo campus with Janet and Ken Vetter ’67. Dean Eric W. Johnson ’87, Ph.D., gave them a tour of the engineering facilities. They were astounded by the changes throughout campus.


Fred Deans ’69 was named the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award winner by the Automotive Division of the Society of Plastics Engineers. The Society of Plastics Engineers is a global society that supports education in the plastics industry. Fred is currently the chief marketing officer, co-founder, and principal of Allied Composites Technologies LLC (ACT) as well as the owner of F. Deans & Associates, a Michigan-based enterprise.


Linda Bohlmann Bredrup ’70 married Steve Bricker ’71 on Sept. 26, 2015, in Barrington, Ill. Linda, Kappa Psi Omega, and Steve, Phi Delta Theta, reconnected after many years. Their wedding included four children, seven grandchildren, and many Phi Delta and Kappa friends! Linda and her son, Tim Bredrup ’05, continue to support beloved Valpo and its great basketball program.


Henry “Hank” Bullamore ’71, professor in the geography department at Frostburg State University, was honored as the fifth recipient of the President’s Distinguished Faculty Award. Hank has served Frostburg State University for 30 years and is recognized as an advocate for the educational benefits of student experiences. In addition to his many years on the faculty, Hank has served as interim director of the Center for International Education on three occasions, led the university’s first study-abroad trip to China, and authored or co-authored program proposals to create majors in inter-national studies, earth science, and urban and regional planning and minors in African American studies and sustainability studies. 3

Fred Mina ’71 retired to Oak Island, N.C. 12 years ago after a career teaching physics in New Jersey. While at Valpo, Fred was a sprinter and jumper on the men’s track team under legendary coach Ed Winrow, and he still holds the Valpo record for the 4×100 relay (along with John Mitchell ’69, Jim Wellsand ’70, and Glenn Woosley ’72). At the age of 67, Fred continues to compete in 5Ks. He has been married for 47 years to Barbara Elizabeth Spillane ’70 Mina and was recently named Brunswick County, N.C. Master Gardener of the year for his work rebuilding the entire deck and walkway system in the Cooperative Extension’s Botanical Garden.

Left to right: Barbara Milaeger ’70 Rampolla, Diane Baur ’71 Kurtz, Marcia Karner ’71 Biggs, Kathy Crisman ’71 DeLassus, Sharon Jacobi ’71 Johnson, Linda Bohlmann ’70 Bricker, Linda Anderson ’70 Suminski, Peg Schroeder ’71 Wing, Cheryl Geuss ’71 Taves, Judy McNabney ’71 Dutton, Carla Hellerman ‘69 Konet, and Karen Keup ‘70 Adam


Rin Curtis ’76 Seibert and Jon Steinbrecher ’83 jointly vacationed in Longboat Key, Fla. 2


René Steinke’s latest novel, named one of NPR’s “Great Reads” of 2014, has been shortlisted for the St. Francis Literary Prize and was an Amazon Book of the Month.


Mary Schultz ’78 Meade received her third-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do in October 2015 from Parker Academy of Martial Arts, a WTF and Kukkiwon certified studio. She teaches and continues to train at the studio in Parker, Colo.


Alpha Xi Epsilon classes of ’79, ’80, and ’81 gathered at Tammy Wilson ’80 Donnelly’s home in nearby Wild Dunes for a reunion in July. Alpha Xi Epsilon alumnae from Illinois, Colorado, Texas, Georgia, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Indiana gathered together to celebrate their sisterhood. 4


Chuck Baldwin ’80 was re-elected as managing director of Ogletree Deakins, one of the largest labor and employment law firms representing management. Chuck joined Ogletree Deakins in 2000 as one of the founding members of the firm’s Indianapolis office and has served in numerous leadership roles. He has devoted his 30-year legal career to representing employers in a full range of labor and employment matters, including Equal Employment Opportunity claims, labor arbitrations, NLRB proceedings, wage and hour disputes, union avoidance, employment contracts, non-competition and trade secret disputes, and class and collective action litigation.

Anne Walther ’80 graduated from Southeastern Oklahoma State University on Dec. 13, 2014 with a master’s degree in aerospace administration and logistics. She is an adjunct professor in the aviation department at the University of Oklahoma and an instructor in air traffic control at the FAA Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center in Oklahoma City.


Susan Spaeth ’85, managing partner of Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton, was recognized by the San Francisco Business Times as one of the Bay Area’s Most Influential Women in Business. Susan focuses her practice on intellectual property and complex/technical litigation, particularly patent litigation and licensing and counseling. 5


René Steinke’s latest novel, named one of NPR’s “Great Reads” of 2014, has been shortlisted for the St. Francis Literary Prize and was an Amazon Book of the Month.

René Steinke ’86, novelist, editor, and educator, has been named a 2016 Guggenheim Fellow. Guggenheim Fellowships are intended for men and women who have already demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts. René’s most recent novel, “Friendswood,” was named one of National Public Radio’s “Great Reads” of 2014, was shortlisted for the St. Francis Literary Prize, and was an Amazon Book of the Month. Her essays and articles have appeared in The New York Times, Vogue, O Magazine, Redbook, Houstonia, Salon, Bookforum, and in anthologies. René is currently an editor-at-large of The Literary Review and the director of the MFA program in creative writing at Fairleigh Dickinson University.


Monique R. Spotts ’87 J.D. was named a shareholder in the law firm of Bryant Miller Olive. Since 1987, Monique has been a public finance attorney, returning to Bryant Miller Olive’s Tampa office in 2013, where she focuses her practice on government public finance and affordable housing. She is a member of the Florida Bar and the National Association of Bond Lawyers and is admitted to practice law in Connecticut. 6


Lieutenant Colonel Robert Kirtland ’91 was recently selected to attend a Senior Service College at the Army War College in Carlisle Barracks, Pa. He is enrolled in a two-year distance education program in order to obtain a master’s degree in strategic studies. Less than 7 percent of all U.S. Army Reserve Officers are selected to
and complete a Senior Service College.


Lynnea Valpatic ’92, LCSW, ACHP-SW, CAP, received the Under Secretary of Health Award for Excellence in Social Work Practice in February 2016. In May 2016, she was named the South Florida Federal Employee of the year. Lynnea is the hospice and palliative care social worker and bereavement coordinator at the West Palm Beach VA Medical Center.


To Elizabeth and Brian Riegler ’92: Gavin McColl Riegler, born Aug. 28, 2015. Brian was recently promoted to the rank of commander in the United States Navy Reserves. He is currently mobilized to active duty to Afghanistan with Special Operations Joint Task Force-Afghanistan, where he was awarded the Purple Heart Medal for injuries sustained in combat during an attack on his base on Aug. 7, 2015.


Kelly Hodgson ’93 Kline, M.D., received her M.D. from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1997. She was honored as a Distinguished Medical Alumni Award Recipient by the University of Wisconsin Medical Alumni Association for the prestigious Sigurd Sivertson Medical Education Award for 2016. The award recognizes one individual annually who has contributed to the education of medical students and to the health of Wisconsin’s citizens throughout their careers.

Laura Kletti ’93 Herrick married Matthew Herrick on May 21, 2016. Laura is the chief environmental engineer for the Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission in Waukesha, Wis. 7



To Benita and Brent Moritz ’95: Elizabeth Joy Moritz, born November 2015. Elizabeth joins sister Hannah.


Brian Penn ’98 is a successful Massage Envy franchisee. Brian opened his first Massage Envy location in Naperville, Ill. in 2007 and has since built his franchise portfolio to five locations.


To Christine Bouffard ’98 Sholtey and Damon Sholtey: Megan Mae Sholtey, born May 31, 2016. Megan joins big sister Addison and big brother Ryan.


Kim Beauvais ’99, ’01 MALS, vice president of business operations and human resources at the Big Ten Network, was named to Sports Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 list. Kim was recognized for helping to build a network currently in 60 homes and for the innovative programs she has led at the network. Among her accomplishments is the “Student U” program, which produces hundreds of events and cultivates real-world experience for more than 500 students per year. Kim was one of the first 15 employees at the launch of the Big Ten Network in 2007 and has helped set the standard by which other conference-owned networks are
and will be measured. 8


Jakob Rinderknecht is the new director of the Pastoral Institute at the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio.



To Kelly Everling ’00 Bruhn and James Bruhn: Colin Louis Bruhn. Colin joins big sisters Avery and Elizabeth. Kelly earned tenure and was named associate dean of the Drake University School of Journalism and Mass Communication. She leads the public relations major, one of the top 36 public relations programs in the world.


Chris Retson ’01 was elected as Crown Point, Ind. City Councilman At-Large. His four-year term began January 2016.


Matt Chelap ’02 has been promoted to vice president at Octagon, a global sports marketing and entertainment agency. Matt executes the sports sponsorships for clients such as PlayStation, Sony, Bank of America, and The Home Depot.

Jakob Rinderknecht is the new director of the Pastoral Institute at the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio.

Jakob Rinderknecht ’02 is the new director of the Pastoral Institute at the University of the Incarnate Word (UIW) in San Antonio. He joins UIW from St. John’s University in Collegeville, Minn., where he was a visiting professor. Jakob also served in the theology department at Marquette University in Milwaukee. In his new position, Jakob seeks to continue UIW’s commitment to making education available to the local church and to develop programming hosted by the Institute.

Corey Schuler ’02 is the director of clinical affairs for Integrative Therapeutics, a Green Bay-based nutraceutical firm dedicated to supporting integrative medicine physicians and health care practitioners.

Bryan Thomas Swanson ’02 has accepted the position of development services director with the City of Hollister, Calif. Bryan spent the previous two and a half years with the City of Calumet City, Ill. as the economic development director.


To Kate Massura ’02, ’07 MSN (Arroyo) Schafer and Nick Schafer: Mary Lillian, born July 7, 2016. Mary joins sisters Teresa Arroyo (11) and Gabriella Arroyo (8). Kate married Nick on April 8, 2016 in Munster, Ind. Attendants included Kate’s daughters, Teresa and Gabriella, and her siblings, Jeff Massura ’07, David Massura ’10, Lauren Massura ’13 (fiancé Ben Ema ’13), and Therese Massura ’19. Kate is faculty at the Rush University College of Nursing in Chicago and is currently enrolled in the Ph.D. in nursing science program.


Eric Petran ’04 was one of 34 federal agency or department engineers selected by the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) to receive the 2016 Federal Engineer of the Year Award. Eric is an electrical engineer in the Navy and is one of seven Navy recipients.


Teri Cummins ’05 J.D. Flory graduated from Purdue University in December 2015 with a master of science in information assurance and security.

Josie Norberg ’05 López moved to rural northern Minnesota, where she is a full-spectrum family physician and medical director of the local ambulance service.


To Sarah Duvendeck ’05 Folks and Brandon Folks: Adam Michael Folks, born Oct. 5, 2015. 9

To Ann Kruse ’07 Galik and David Galik ’05: Eliza Ann Galik, born March 14, 2016. 10



To Stephanie Hart ’06 Buchs and Joshua Buchs ’06: Elizabeth Rose Buchs, born Oct. 2, 2014.

To Ashley Seale ’06 Grindlay and Kevin Grindlay: Raya Hope Grindlay, born Oct. 7, 2015.


Karl Aho ’07 received his Ph.D. in philosophy from Baylor University August 2016 and began to teach full time in fall 2016 as an instructor of philosophy at Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas. Karl expresses appreciation for his Valpo education and credits Valpo, particularly his Christ College experience, with equipping him with the skills necessary to interview successfully for his current position.


To Dana and Mark Pautsch ’07: Bristol Lynn Pautsch, born March 20, 2016.


Lindsey Gargas ’08 married Joel Palaschak on June 25, 2016.

Mallory Walsh ’08 was promoted to executive director of 24 Hours of Booty, a nonprofit charity located in Charlotte, N.C. that provides 24-hour cycling events that are safe, fun, and open to all levels of cycling ability. Its purpose is to increase public awareness, funds, and support for organizations dedicated to cancer navigation and survivorship. Mallory previously served as fundraising and recruitment director, overseeing rider recruitment and corporate fundraising efforts for the 24 Hours of Booty charity cycling events in Charlotte, N.C., Indianapolis, and Columbia, Md. 12


To Ashley Lukasik ’08 Spoljaric and Scot Spoljaric ’08: Ava Louise Spoljaric, born May 22, 2016. Ava joins big brother Owen. 11


Valerie Kaufman ’09 was promoted to manager at Chiampou Travis Besaw & Kershner LLP. 13

Katie Krieter ’09 Piet was married in 2016. Katie also graduated from West Virginia University School of Dentistry in 2016 and is currently working as a dentist in Vermont.

Stephanie Scherer ’09 earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry from Washington University in St. Louis, Mo. in August 2016. Her doctoral research focused on how neurons perceive signals on the outside of the cell and translate that signal into an appropriate cellular response.


Janet Lucien ’10 received a doctor of osteopathic medicine from Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine in May 2016. Janet is completing a residency in pediatrics at Dayton Children’s Hospital in Dayton, Ohio.

Andrew Stoebig ’10 was consecrated as a deacon in the Community of Lutheran Deacons of the Lutheran Deaconess Association in Gloria Christi Chapel, Valparaiso University on March 3, 2016.


Priyank Jain ’11 M.S. cofounded a startup company in Bangalore, India, named BlogBeats in 2014 and successfully secured pre-Series A funding for his business. BlogBeats is a blogging platform that allows users to engage in live blogging in any micro-location on past, present, and future.

Matthew Kochevar ’11, ’14 J.D. was appointed as minority counsel to the Indiana Recount Commission on April 29, 2016.


Sean Bailey ’12, 5News meteorologist in Fort Smith, Ark., embarked on a road trip with his puppy Skye. During his journey, he caught up with Rachel Duensing ’15, Jack Gerfen ’11, and Ellen “Bacca” Lytle ’10. Sean stopped by campus and met up with his professors. 14


Ryan Broekhoff  ’13 represented Team Australia in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. 16

Bryan Rogers ’13 J.D. joined Swanson, Martin & Bell LLP, a nationally recognized litigation firm in Chicago, as an associate attorney. Bryan focuses his practice on construction, insurance, medical negligence and health care, product liability, and general trial practice. 15


Courtenay Stewart-Reiner ’14 received a master of arts in psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology and is currently attending Northwestern University seeking a master of science in global health. Courtenay married Phil Reiner in June 2011. Her wedding party included Lyndsay Dudgeon ’02, ’05 J.D. DeMatteo, Michelle Batista ’02, Brianne Ludera ’02 Shields, and Bambi Horton ’02.


Marlane Anna Borchers ’15 and Kaitlin Werth ’15 graduated with bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering. While at Valpo, they became study partners and eventually discovered they were related, sharing the same great-great-great-grandparents. A family that had lost track of each other for generations was reunited at Valpo! Marlane now works for the power company Commonwealth Edison.

Johannah Facer ’15 married Jacob Frey ’15 on Nov. 7, 2015, in the Chapel of the Resurrection.

Alexander Uryga ’15 was selected as Indiana’s 2016 James Madison Fellow. James Madison Fellowships support the graduate study of American history by aspiring and experienced secondary school teachers of American history, American government, and social studies. This fellowship will assist Alexander to become a social studies teacher. Alexander is the first James Madison Fellow from Valparaiso University and the first Junior Fellow (prospective teacher) in seven years from the state of Indiana.


Nathan Gafkjen ’16 wrote an article that appeared in the July 2015 issue of Living Lutheran, the official magazine of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). “Bound for New Orleans” summarizes the issues that came before the ELCA’s churchwide assembly, Aug. 10–13. Nathan is currently an intern with the ELCA’s Strategic Communications staff.


Hannah  Albers
Class of 2016
Washington, D.C.
The Camino de Santiago

Left to right: Hannah Albers ’16, Elizabeth Shumway ’16, Sarah Albers ’10, and Paul Albers ’12

Awaking before sunrise, they traveled between 16 and 22 miles each day through various elevations and terrain, carrying everything they needed for a month on their backs, approximately 20 pounds. Sleeping in hostels with strangers, sharing communal showers with virtually no privacy, and experiencing extreme physical and mental hardship characterized their days.

As her Valpo journey came to a close, Hannah Albers ’16 began a hike of the Camino de Santiago (Camino) in Spain, following in the footsteps of her brother, Paul Albers ’12, who had traveled the same path upon his own graduation.

“I grew up in Valparaiso, on Valpo’s campus, and was transformed by my Valpo experience — the people and the place,” Hannah says. “Valpo is my home and always has been, so graduation marked a transition not only into adulthood, but away from my home. And, I felt compelled to recognize this transition in a significant way.”

On June 21, 2016, Hannah, two of her siblings, Paul Albers and Sarah Albers ’10, Elizabeth Shumway ’16, and Chris Jung embarked on a 29-day, nearly 500-mile hike of the Camino, the most traveled pilgrimage in Spain, dating back to the ninth century and attracting 100,000 people annually. They walked from Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port in France to Santiago de Compostela in northwest Spain.

“While every day was challenging both mentally and physically, each new day also had its new rewards,” Hannah says. “My prayer every morning and night was one of thanksgiving. I thanked God every day — for blessing me with such a wonderful family, bringing me closer to them through this journey, and for simply granting me the ability to walk and complete this endeavor.”

Alumni In Focus


After seeing firsthand the detrimental effects of psychological trauma around the world, Steve Lehmann ’09 hatched the idea of Threadies, which he launched in October 2015 along with Andrew Jones ’09, his best friend and roommate throughout four years at Valpo. Threadies are specially designed, handmade teddy bears that come in sibling pairs. Each stuffed animal purchased holds a poem detailing the Threadies story, and its twin is donated to a child refugee along with a trauma coping card. For Steve and Andrew, Valpo was a point of discovery, a place where their minds were opened and their purpose cultivated.

Where have your paths taken you since graduation?
Steve: My path has been all over the place. I received my bachelor’s in engineering from Valpo and had a job lined up at Caterpillar upon graduation. From there, I decided to go overseas and study theology, then returned and worked an engineering job, before moving to Washington, D.C. to work in the humanitarian sector. I obtained my MBA at Notre Dame in 2014 and subsequently landed my current role of assistant director for the University of Chicago Innovation Fund, where I invest in start-ups.

Andrew: The weekend after I graduated, I married my wife, Kathryn Zuehsow ’10 Jones. I worked for a number of years as the executive director of a nonprofit in Valpo, the Valparaiso International Center, prior to my wife and I relocating to Dallas to start our current business Fair and Square Imports, a fair trade store where we sell handmade items from nonprofits and small artisan groups in developing countries.

What is the mission of Threadies?
Steve: The primary mission of Threadies is to help children cope with trauma. We provide a tool that comforts kids and teaches them trauma coping techniques in situations where it is absolutely essential, such as kids displaced by war or natural disaster. We also aim to develop globally conscious kids in the United States by connecting them with another child around the world. The final piece is the support of refugee families in the Middle East through the employment of women in the West Bank, who sew each bear by hand in exchange for a wage and job training.

What has been your most rewarding moment through Threadies?
Steve: When a giving partner texts me about their experience in giving the Threadies. Seeing a child holding one of these Threadies will make my day. Neither Andrew nor I have actually given a Threadie to a child, as that’s not what we’re here to do. We’re here to create an impact, and the greatest impact is to work through people who have real connections with these kids.

Has Threadies surprised you in any way?
Andrew: I’ve really been surprised at how easily children understand the concept. They read the poem that’s included and are able to make that really deep connection we hoped for. I’ve seen children open up to the concept, open their eyes to what’s going on around the world, and discover how they can make a difference in helping children who are less fortunate.

How would you define success in regards to Threadies?
Andrew: Operationally, I would like Threadies to become sustainable so we can hire a full-time staff and continually expand our reach.

Steve: I would love to see 10,000, even 50,000 kids receive these bears and exhibit increased levels of comfort, coping capabilities, and psychological well-being. We may not be able to turn around a kid’s life, but we can make a difference, and that’s what I want to see — a measurable difference in the level of psychological health of refugee children around the world.

How did Valpo shape you and your careers?
Steve: Working on a humanitarian-type business like Threadies connects back to our experience at Valpo. From the ministry of Pastor James Wetzstein to Engineers Without Borders, Valpo was full of tools and resources encouraging us to think about ways to act in service to our neighbors. Christ College — The Honors College was a critical piece, opening my creative mind and helping me think about things on a greater scope — across disciplines as well as internationally.

Andrew: The large international student community on campus broadened my understanding of the world and influenced my personal values. My major, international economics and cultural affairs, as well as Students of Free Enterprise, hugely impacted my knowledge of international and economic development and enabled me to see the world from a different perspective. They primed me to get excited about a project like Threadies through an understanding of its potential impact in the world. I found my wife as well as my purpose at Valpo.

Click to enlarge.


William Karpenko II
Class of 1961

Front row, left to right: Leah Keehr ’02 Anderson, Linda Brandt ’70 Olsen, Michele Mahsman ’67 Karpenko. Back row, left to right: Elvin Harms Jr. ’79, Carsten Falkenberg ’72, Michelle Sloan ’93 Pavasars, William Karpenko II ’61

The Karpenko Institute for Nurturing and Developing Leadership Excellence (KINDLE) was founded in 1998 by William “Bill” Karpenko II ’61, former director of church relations and special assistant to the president at Valpo, to foster and multiply Christ-like servant leaders.

“I obtained a theological background and learned a vision of leadership and service at Valpo that has found fruition through KINDLE,” Bill says.

Comprised of numerous interactive program initiatives, KINDLE is designed to enrich and refocus people to live in the image of Christ, propelling them to serve as leaders in their homes, workplaces, congregations, and communities. KINDLE has shaped Bill personally as he has grown to more fully understand the hand of God in his own life and discovered new purpose. He has found great joy in witnessing the far-reaching impact of KINDLE — people reignite their calling, deepen their understanding of themselves, and see themselves in a different light.

Valpo graduates across five decades and from varying backgrounds have joined together in commitment to KINDLE, many of whom currently serve on the board of directors. These individuals embody the spirt of Valpo in their deep commitment to service, church, and society.

“At Valpo, you become aware of your capacity to make an impact as a leader and are instilled with a sense of service — it becomes part of your DNA,” Bill says.

Alumni Club Highlights


Regional Forever Valpo celebrations have been held in seven cities across the country — Chicago, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Milwaukee, Naples, Detroit, and New York City — giving Valpo alumni and friends a chance to meet University leadership and learn about the Campaign. President Heckler and a dean from one of Valpo’s Colleges spoke at the events, with a member of the Campaign Executive Committee serving as emcee.


Raised as of May 31, 2017: $156,315,454 (Goal: $250,000,000)

Upcoming Events

For more information on upcoming regional and national alumni events, visit

July 28, 2017
Brewers vs. Cubs
Valpo Club of Milwaukee Game and tailgate

July 30, 2017
DC Annual Summer Picnic
Valpo Club of
Washington, D.C.

September 29 – October 1, 2017
Save the Date for Homecoming 2017
Watch for details in July

October 11, 2017
Valpo Club of Detroit, Meadow Brook Hall

October 21, 2017
Valpo Club of
Southern California