Photo by Mark Seliger/NBC
We are pleased that so many individuals, employers and community members share the personal and professional accomplishments of our alums. Send news of career advancements, awards, family additions, educational milestones and other achievements to COMtalk via www.bu.edu/alumni/classnotes.
Lorrie Fink (’70, SED’73) showed her paintings and drawings in the solo exhibition WILD THINGS: The Unintended Landscape last fall at El Cerrito City Hall in California. Her series depicted native and exotic plants she has encountered in wilderness areas, in vacant lots and on the edges of cultivated gardens. See more of her work at www.lorriefink.com, or email Lorrie at email@example.com.
The New York Times reported in February that NBC Universal has consolidated all its cable entertainment properties under Bonnie Hammer (CGS’69, COM’71, SED’75). Her responsibilities as chairman of the NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment Group comprise executive oversight of 12 leading cable brands including USA, E! Entertainment and Universal HD, as well as production entities Universal Cable Productions and Wilshire Studios. “The move,” the Times stated, “elevates Ms. Hammer to a position among the most prominent and powerful female executives in the television business.”
Patrick Kahn (’78) is producer and director of Snap! Orlando, a project to “increase the visibility and appreciation of photography as art and to enhance Orlando’s national presence as a vibrant cultural tourism destination.” Learn more at www.snaporlando.com.
Susan Rabin (’78) coauthored Jewish Community of Syracuse (Arcadia Publishing, 2011), a photographic history. Susan is a writer and an editor and has served on the boards of the Syracuse Hebrew Day School, the Rabbi Jacob H. Epstein High School of Jewish Studies and Vera House. She has lived in Syracuse since 1987 and has two children with her husband.
Erren Gottlieb (CGS’77, COM’79) is an executive producer and director of Biz Kid$ the Emmy-winning public television series that teaches kids about business and money. She was an executive producer of the popular 1990s series Bill Nye the Science Guy, which won 26 Emmys. Erren says she has her dream job.
Peter Morton Coan (’81) published Toward a Better Life: America’s New Immigrants in Their Own Words—From Ellis Island to the Present (Prometheus Books, 2011). His work has appeared in publications such as TIME magazine, The New York Times and Newsday. He is the creator and principal owner of www.coanbooks.com.
Richard Abrahams (’83) published Long Beach Lullaby (Fast Pencil, 2011), an offbeat mystery about two former college friends who travel back in time to save the life of a woman whose body washed ashore on a Long Island beach in 1931. Learn more at www.longbeachlullaby.weebly.com.
Don Van Natta, Jr. (’86) published Wonder Girl: The Magnificent Sporting Life of Babe Didrikson Zaharias (Little, Brown and Company, 2011), a biography of the first woman to play in the PGA golf tournament.
Christopher Koch (CGS’84, COM’87) is one of the directors of the Emmy Award-winning ABC comedy Modern Family, which recently won the 2012 Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series—Comedy or Musical. Chris has been with the show for three seasons. His other directing credits include the television shows Scrubs and My Name Is Earl and the films Snow Day and A Guy Thing. While at BU, Chris won the Redstone award for Best Student Film.
David A. Simon (’87) has joined Massey Knakal Realty Services as the executive managing director. He will be responsible for overseeing day-to-day operations, recruiting and expanding Massey Knakal’s service lines throughout New Jersey.
Carter Blanchard (’88)’s sci-fi spec script, Glimmer, was picked up by DreamWorks in a bidding war, and was scheduled to head into production in June. Directed by Ringan Ledwidge, the found-footage-style film features a group of high school seniors who discover a time portal while camping in the woods. When three of the friends disappear into the past, the two who remain must find a way to protect the present—even as their pasts begin to change.
Paul Moniz (’88) is managing director of communications and marketing at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University. Previously, Paul was director of the college’s Philip and Rita Rosen Department of Communications and Public Affairs.
Linda Goodspeed (’89) published Redfield Proctor & the Division of Rutland (The History Press, 2011).
Laura Behling (’91) has been appointed dean and vice president for academic affairs at Knox College.
Artistic Director Catherine Burns (’91) and Producing Director Sarah Austin Jenness (’00) are at the helm of the Moth, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to storytelling. At each live Moth show, which has a theme (such as “silver lining” or “mothers”), participants share true stories based on their lives. The best performances are then broadcasted on Moth Radio Hour, which Catherine and Sarah cohost. Story subjects have run the gamut from a real-life Indiana Jones who works with big cats to an African American woman who took a hospice job tending to a Klansman. To read more and see a video from the show, visit www.bu.edu/bostonia/summer12/story.
Diana Carmenates (CGS’89, COM’91) is vice president of meetings and educational services at the International Dairy Foods Association in Washington, D.C.
A+E Networks announced that Nancy Dubuc (’91) has been appointed president of entertainment and media. She oversees all content creation, brand development and marketing for the entire A+E Networks portfolio including A&E, Lifetime and HISTORY and their affiliated brands. In addition, she oversees A+E Networks’ International and Digital Divisions. Nancy was appointed to the position in September 2012. Previously, she was president and general manager of the HISTORY and Lifetime networks.
Mike Woolf (CGS’89, COM’91) runs Beef & Pie Productions, an award-winning production company that has done commercials for Southwest Airlines and webisodes for the US Air Force. Beef & Pie Productions recently collaborated with the app company Bohemian Innovation to create a game that rewards players with a free viewing of its short documentary Life Is Marvelous! Learn more at www.beefandpie.com.
Daniel Palmer (CAS’91, COM’95) published Helpless (Kensington Books, 2012), about a former Navy Seal who moves back to New Hampshire to raise his teenage daughter following the murder of his ex-wife. Daniel spent a decade in e-commerce before starting a career writing techno-thrillers.
Jordan K. Debes (’96) has joined The Cabot Group as vice president of multifamily asset management.
Tama Ryder (’96) published Where’s the Watch?! and Other Tales: A Memoir from Seinfeld’s Uncle Leo (Staff Picks Press, 2011), which she wrote with the late actor Len Lesser. Fellow BU alum and Seinfeld actor Jason Alexander (CFA’81, Hon.’95) contributed to the book. Visit www.tamaryder.com.
Alex Poulos (’97) is writing a monthly business column for The MetroWest Daily News, a chain of suburban newspapers around Boston. His recent topics include stress in small business, special occasion shopping and staging a sales meeting. Alex is president of LaunchPad Media, an interactive media firm. He’s written op-eds for The Boston Globe, The Boston Egotist (a blog for the advertising community) and for his company blog. Alex can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kelly McGonigal (’99, CAS’99), a psychology instructor at Stanford University and a science journalist, published The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of It (Avery, 2012). The book explains how we can break old habits and create healthy ones, conquer procrastination, focus better and manage stress.
Steve Kornacki (’01) has been named the new host of Up on MSNBC.
Vanessa A. Czarnecki (’06) has been promoted to news editor and director of digital content for the Vineyard Gazette in Massachusetts.
Reneé Spurlin (’06) was recently promoted from director to vice president of client services at communications 21, a marketing public relations firm.
Kasia (Katarzyna) Zabawa (’08, CAS’08) was recently promoted to deputy director of communications at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. Former classmates can email Kasia at email@example.com.
Kristen Ruby (CGS’07, COM’09)’s company, Ruby Media Group, won 34 awards from the Advertising Club of Westchester, in New York, at the annual Big W Gala. The Big W Awards honor the most creative, innovative and memorable public relations, marketing and advertising campaigns in the region.
Laura K. Oggeri (’10) has organized an event, a “Night for Newtown,” to benefit the EverWonder Children’s Museum in her hometown of Newtown, Connecticut.
Jamie Newton (’12, GSM’12) is vice president of business development at the Los Angeles-based company Tongal (www.tongal.com). Tongal matches global creative talent with brands and companies to create original online video content. Anyone can pitch an idea, and the winners are paid for their work. Tongal, which launched in 2008, has raised $15 million with Insight Venture Partners.