Photo of Erich Schwartzel (’09) by Andrew Rush
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 at COMalum@bu.edu.
Alan S. Feinstein (DGE’50, COM’52), a philanthropist and founder of the Feinstein Foundation, launched his 17th annual $1 million giveaway to nonprofit agencies that fight hunger. Learn more at www.feinsteinfoundation.org.
Amnon Kabatchnik (’54) was a finalist in the ForeWord Book of the Year Awards for Blood on the Stage, 1975–2000: Milestone Plays of Crime, Mystery, and Detection (Scarecrow Press, 2012). Learn more at www.amnonkabatchnik.com.
Kenneth Richardson (’55) published a poem, a work of creative nonfiction and a photo in volume three of the juried literary magazine the Agora, produced annually by the Participatory Learning and Teaching Organization associated with the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s division of continuing studies.
Robert Levy (DGE’61, COM’63) was reelected to his third four-year term on the Plantation, Florida, City Council and selected to serve as council president. Robert was also selected for the Broward County Senior Hall of Fame. Email Robert at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Phyllis Zagano (’70) published Women & Catholicism: Gender, Communion, and Authority (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011).
Gary Larrabee (’71) published Sensation at Salem: The Legendary Babe Zaharias’s Historic 1954 US Open Victory (Cricket Press, 2013).
Adrienne Gusoff (DGE’73, COM’75) published Lucky in Love: Secrets to Being Irresistible (CreateSpace, 2013). Adrienne is a relationship coach and lecturer. Learn more at www.artofepiphany.com.
Gregory Pearson (’76) published Fenway Fanatics: 50 Boston Red Sox Fans Tell Their Stories (Surry Cottage Books, 2013). Gregory interviewed fans from Massachusetts to Uzbekistan. He writes: “Their stories include the Vermont man who built a miniature Fenway Park on his property, the Rhode Island couple who delayed their son’s birth to avoid a conflict with opening day and the Massachusetts woman whose last wish was that people wear Red Sox gear to her wake.”
Karen Kang (’77) published BrandingPays: The Five-Step System to Reinvent Your Personal Brand (BrandingPays Media, 2013).
Jody Davis (’78) writes: “I’m back on the air as a volunteer program host at Flagler College radio, WFCF 88.5, for Theater 88Five, an old-time radio show that airs each Saturday morning. I provide fun facts à la Robert Osborne on Turner Classic Movies. I also produce student re-creations of old-time radio shows and serve as a guest lecturer and student mentor when requested.” Listen to Theater 88Five Saturdays at 9 a.m. EST on www.iheart.com. Email Jody at email@example.com.
Bob Sarles (’79) produced, directed and edited the documentary film Sweet Blues: A Film about Mike Bloomfield for Sony Legacy. Visit www.ravinfilms.com.
Ron MacLean (’80) published his third book of fiction, Headlong (Last Light Studio, 2013), a literary thriller about fathers, sons, ecoterrorism, murder, immaturity, anarchism, marriage, friendship and failure.
Ricardo Guthrie (’84) is an assistant professor of ethnic studies at Northern Arizona University (NAU). He completed an ethnographic mural project titled The Historic Southside Mural at the Murdoch Center, which reflected the contributions of Flagstaff’s African American leaders. He received the NAU Research and Creativity Award for Most Significant Artistic and Creative Work.
Jennifer I. Paquette (’84) coauthored her debut mythology novel, The Awakening of Agnostos (Write More Publications, 2013), with her son, Nicholas. It is the first novel in the Myths of the Olympians series and is available in paperback from www.amazon.com and e-book on www.amazon.co.uk, www.barnesandnoble.com and www.smashwords.com.
Saraann S. Parker (’84) joined the law firm of Armstrong Teasdale as a partner in its St. Louis office.
D. Brenton Simons (CGS’86, COM’88, SED’94) is president and CEO of the New England Historic Genealogical Society in Boston, Massachusetts. Brenton, who has helmed the 170-year-old society since 2005, is steering a $55 million capital campaign for the organization and has led its participation in several television shows, including PBS’s Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
David Steinberg (’88) completed his four-year term as president of the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association at the conclusion of the group’s 2012 conference, held as part of the UNITY 2013 convention in Las Vegas. In October 2012, David was elected treasurer of UNITY: Journalists for Diversity for the 2013–2014 term. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Paul J. Riccio (CGS’88, COM’90) writes that his short film, Space Cadet, was included in the Tribeca Film Festival in April 2013.
Vineeta Sawkar (’90, CAS’90) joined the Star Tribune Media Company as the on-camera host for video news operations. An Emmy Award-winning journalist with 17 years of experience in the Twin Cities, she will support the media company’s increased video presence on the Web. Watch Vineeta at www.startribune.com.
Rachel Sobel (’91) was promoted to senior managing editor at GLC Custom Media, a content marketing agency in Northbrook, Illinois. Her husband, Alex Rubenstein (’91), earned tenure as an elementary school teacher in the Park Ridge, Illinois, public school system. The couple celebrated their twentieth wedding anniversary in summer 2012.
Curtis Epstein (’95), a staff editor at Aviation International News, was named the National Air Transportation Association’s Aviation Journalist of the Year.
Katie (Dyer) Avebe (CGS’00, COM’02) writes that her nonprofit theater company, Royal Family Productions (RFP) in New York City, produced a benefit performance in May 2013 featuring selections of Walking the Volcano, a chain of 10-minute plays by the late Jon Lipsky, a BU College of Fine Arts professor of playwriting and acting. The performance was part of RFP’s Emerging Artist Program. Jess Moss (CFA’11), a member of the program, played the lead role.
Amiee J. Shelton (’02) will travel to the Slovak Republic in spring 2014 as a Fulbright Scholar.
Alex Lipschultz (’06) produced Computer Chess, the critically acclaimed film written and directed by former BU Adjunct Professor Andrew Bujalski. Houston King (CAS’95) coproduced and Gerald Peary, who curates BU’s Cinemathèque, stars. Computer Chess premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2013 and was dubbed “sneakily brilliant” by A. O. Scott of the New York Times. It was nominated for the John Cassavetes Award at the Independent Spirit Awards.
Caitlin Graham (’07) is a writer-actor-director who just formed her own production company to produce the pilot of a darkly comedic Web series called No Method. The semiautobiographical series follows the trials and tribulations of a cynical Brooklyn actor as she skids toward rock bottom. To see the pilot, visit www.nomethodseries.com.
Josh (’07) and Benny (’08) Safdie premiered their documentary, Lenny Cooke, a film they directed for Shop Korn Productions, at the Tribeca Film Festival in April 2013. The film is a tragic story about the No. 1-ranked high school basketball player in 2001 who did not get the chance to play in the NBA. Visit www.redbucketfilms.com for more information.
Samantha Smikle (CGS’05, COM’07) majored in print journalism but has since pursued a career in jewelry. She has launched her own line called TNEMNRODA (pronounced nem-row-dah) and was featured in Jet magazine. Learn more at www.maisontnemnroda.com.
Mary Dolan (’08) was named director of social media and media outreach at the Los Angeles-based Operation USA, a nongovernmental organization specializing in domestic and international disaster relief and development programs. Learn more at www.opusa.org.
Robyn Neeley (’08,’09) published Destination Wedding (Crimson Romance, 2013), a comedic romance novel. Visit www.robynneeley.com for more information.
Amanda Curtis (CGS’07, COM’09) started a fashion-tech company called 19th Amendment (www.19thamendment.co), a portfolio site for emerging fashion designers to showcase, receive critiques and sell their work. Amanda studied fashion design at Parsons, and her work has been featured on the runway at New York Fashion Week. She has also designed for Ellen DeGeneres and made it to the final round of admission to London Fashion Week. Email her at email@example.com.
Katie Garcia (’09) is general manager and co-owner of the Brooklyn-based independent record label Captured Tracks, where she began working as an unpaid intern. In December 2012, Katie became engaged to Dustin Payseur, lead singer of the band Beach Fossils. Visit www.capturedtracks.com.
Samantha Cox (’10), who works at CRT/tanaka, was recognized as the 2013 PR Rising Star by the Public Relations Society of America’s Richmond chapter.
Kelsey Aten O Ciardha (’11) was appointed digital and graphic designer at Calypso Communications. She currently manages graphic design and web development work for Derry Imaging Center and Massachusetts General Hospital.
Andrew Kightlinger (’12) directed the short film Paper People, which was an official selection at the Oscar-qualifying Palm Springs ShortFest in June 2013. He also directed his first feature film, Dust of War, a postapocalyptic action film set in the prairie of South Dakota and starring Tony Todd (Candyman) and Doug Jones (Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy).