Class Notes

By Amanda Clark

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*Annual Alumni Association Member
**Lifetime Alumni Association Member

Faculty, staff and friends

Cockrell

Dr. Phillip “Flapp” Cockrell is a recipient of a 2020 20 Under 40 Leadership Recognition Award in Toledo. He was selected from a field of 200 nominated candidates. The 20 Under 40 program focuses on individuals under the age of 40 who have distinguished themselves in their careers and/or the community. Cockrell serves as vice provost and vice president for student affairs at The University of Toledo. He created the University’s first Parent and Family Member Association and established the Rocket-to-Rocket Fund to support students experiencing hardships.

Khanna

Dr. Raghav Khanna is a recipient of a 2020 20 Under 40 Leadership Recognition Award in Toledo. He was selected from a field of 200 nominated candidates. The 20 Under 40 program focuses on individuals under the age of 40 who have distinguished themselves in their careers and/or the community. Khanna is an assistant professor in the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department at UToledo. He also serves as an instructor and research advisor to undergraduate and graduate students.

Nichols

**Donovan Nichols (A/S ’04, Honors ’04, MEd ’06) is a recipient of a 2020 20 Under 40 Leadership Recognition Award in Toledo. He was selected from a field of 200 nominated candidates. The 20 Under 40 program focuses on individuals under the age of 40 who have distinguished themselves in their careers and/or the community. Nichols is the assistant dean for student involvement and leadership at the University. He co-founded the UToledo Blue Crew, a secret spirit organization, that has appeared on ESPN and Sports Illustrated and he founded the UToledo Alumni Association’s Las Vegas Chapter, serving as its president for four years.


1960s

**Ralph Gallagher (Law ’69) was recognized by the Ohio State Bar Association for 50 years of service to the Columbus community and the legal profession.

Jackson

**Birdel Jackson, III (Eng ’68) was named a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the nation’s oldest engineering society. He is currently a national member of the UToledo board of trustees and former president of the Alumni Association board of trustees. Jackson was named UToledo’s 2001 Civil Engineer of the Year and received both the Blue T and Gold T Awards from the UToledo Alumni Association.

Straub

John “Jack” L. Straub (Law ’69) was honored by the Ohio State Bar Association for 50 years of service to the law profession. He is a member of the litigation practice group at Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP in Toledo and has practiced almost exclusively in the area of family law for 40 years.

Talmage

**Diana “Dee” Talmage (MEd ’65) was reappointed to the Owens Community College board of trustees through 2026. She was first appointed in 2002. Talmage taught in Garden City, Mich., the Toledo Public Schools and has served on the Ottawa Hills Board of Education. Owens is located in Perrysburg, Ohio.


1980s

*Ken Konya (Bus ’80) is the vice president of sales for the consumer packaged goods (CPG) division of Tree Top, Inc., leading the team in creating and executing corporate sales strategies. He has more than 38 years of CPG sales experience, 30 of them were with the J.M. Smucker Company. Tree Top, Inc. is located in Selah, Wash.

Stuart A. Wilcox (Eng ’86) was added to the board of directors of Revolution Microelectronics, an Atlanta-based cultivation lighting manufacturer. He has more than 25 years of global supply chain and operations experience and has served on numerous cannabis and biotech boards.


1990s

Dr. Roberta Milliken (Ph.D. ’95) will join Ohio University as dean of the Chillicothe Campus.

Sievert

**Dr. Deana Sievert (A/S ’92, MNRS ’03) has been appointed president of ProMedica Fostoria Community Hospital and ProMedica Memorial Hospital in Fremont, Ohio. She has been with ProMedica since 2010 and has experience as a critical care nurse, nurse educator and in senior management positions.

Siffer

*Michael Siffer (Eng ’91) has been elected to serve as Indiana Section Board Member for the 2021 Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) Great Lakes District. ITE, an international individual member educational and scientific association, is a multimodal professional transportation organization. He is a transportation technical leader at GAI Consultants in Ft. Wayne, Ind. Siffer specializes in overseeing and coordinating the design of highway and traffic engineering projects.


2000s

Baker

Dr. Jennifer Baker (MS ’08, MED ’12) joined the medical staff at McLaren Flint in Flint, Mich. as a vascular surgeon.

Bailey

Stephanie Bailey (HSHS ’07, DPT ’10) completed the Virtual Alumni 5k in Oct. at Wildwood Preserve Metropark in Toledo. She and her husband got engaged on the covered bridge at Wildwood in 2009 and were in town celebrating their tenth wedding anniversary.

Effler

Timothy Effler (Law ’08) is a recipient of a 2020 20 Under 40 Leadership Recognition Award in Toledo. He was selected from a field of 200 nominated candidates. The 20 Under 40 program focuses on individuals under the age of 40 who have distinguished themselves in their careers and/or the community. Effler is an assistant Ohio attorney general in the consumer protection section. He helps to protect Ohio consumers and businesses by ensuring a safe and strong marketplace through the enforcement of consumer laws.

Kuns

Roger Kuns (Bus ’03, MBA ’13) is a recipient of a 2020 20 Under 40 Leadership Recognition Award in Toledo. He was selected from a field of 200 nominated candidates. The 20 Under 40 program focuses on individuals under the age of 40 who have distinguished themselves in their careers and/or the community. Kuns is president of Kuns Northcoast Security. He has been recognized by the Sandusky County Chamber as a Medium-sized Business Member of the Year and Young Professional Leader of the Year. He was a captain in the Marine Corps who was deployed to more than 11 countries from 2003 – 2007, completing his military career in 2010 as an officer recruiter in Georgia.

Hunt Thomas

Katherine Hunt Thomas (Law ’09) is a recipient of a 2020 20 Under 40 Leadership Recognition Award in Toledo. She was selected from a field of 200 nominated candidates. The 20 Under 40 program focuses on individuals under the age of 40 who have distinguished themselves in their careers and/or the community. Hunt Thomas is a disability rights attorney and director of advocacy at The Ability Center of Greater Toledo. Under her leadership at The Ability Center, their advocacy program earned a national award, becoming the advocacy leader for a statewide disability network and being a recognized enforcer of disability civil rights.


2010s

Bortz

Dr. Michael Bortz (MED ’14) joined CHRISTUS Trinity Clinic in Texarkana, Texas as a general surgeon. During his residency, he focused on disease processes of the thyroid, parathyroid and adrenal glands.

Boyd

*Brian W. Boyd (Law ’16) joined Secrest Wardle in their Troy, Mich. office as an associate. He is a member of the law firm’s motor vehicle litigation and premises liability practice groups.

Gilson (right)

Emily Gilson (NRS ’15) and Josh Niese were married on Saturday, Nov. 14 at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Napoleon, Ohio. Emily is a registered nurse at ProMedica Flower Hospital in Sylvania, Ohio and Josh is a certified public accountant in Ottawa, Ohio at Penrod And George.

Khubchandani

Dr. Jagdish Khubchandani (Ph.D. ’10) joined the faculty of the College of Health and Social Services at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. He is a professor in the department of public health sciences. His areas of expertise include clinical and social epidemiology, global health, and violence and injury prevention.

Lukas (right)

*Adam Lukas (HHS ’19) and Ellie Miller were married on Oct. 17 at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Continental, Ohio. Adam is a police officer in Bainbridge Township, Chagrin Falls, Ohio and Ellie is a student at the University of Findlay, studying school psychology.

Noftz (right)

*Paige Michelle Noftz (MA ’18) and Andrew Paul Mack were united in marriage on Feb. 8, 2020 at All Saints Catholic Church in New Riegel, Ohio. Paige is a speech pathologist with P.T. Services Rehabilitation in Tiffin and Andrew is the manager of Mack’s Trucking. They honeymooned in Costa Rica and reside in Alvada.

O’Brien (left)

*Dr. Michelle O’Brien (Pharm ’11, PharmD ’13) and her husband, Eric, a second-year UToledo doctoral student, welcomed their son, Neil, on Nov. 3. The new Rocket fan was 9 pounds, 2 ounces and 20.5”.

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