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Class Notes

Whether it is having children, starting new careers, meeting up with old friends, and traveling the world, Seven Hills alumni have lots of news to share. Check out news from our alumni from the Fall/Winter 2023 Magazine. Have you own news to share? Fill out the alumni update form or send an email to Director of Development Margo Kirstein


Sanna Goyert (H) (New York City) shares, “I am teaching med students in a seven-year program, and I do basic science research in immunology, searching for the next best therapy for sepsis/sepsis shock.”


Jan (Fullgraf) Golann (H) (New York City) tells us, “Steve and I are enjoying our five grandchildren. We still live in New York City but also spend time in Florida and Nashville.”


Margo Taft Stever’s (H) (Sleepy Hollow, NY) third full-length poetry collection, “The End of Horses,” was published in April 2022 by Broadstone Books. One of three winners of a 2022 Pinnacle Book Achievement Award and a 2023 NYC Big Book Award Distinguished Favorite in the category of poetry, the book focuses on the sixth extinction. With poet Susana H. Case, Stever also edited “I Wanna Be Loved by You: Poems on Marilyn Monroe,” (Milk & Cake Press, 2022) which was the sole winner of the 2022 Pinnacle Book Achievement Award and a finalist for the 2023 Eric Hoffer Grand Prize, for the 2022 International Book Award, and for the American Book Fest Award, all in the anthology category.


Sharon Vaino (C) (New York City) and her husband, Jaan, commissioned Sarah-Margaret Gibson ’07, the daughter of her classmate Anni Macht C’70, to paint a portrait of them. Also, Sharon shares that she and her husband have two granddaughters: Lydia Arlene Vaino, 2, and Penelope Irene Vaino, 1 month, both having great-grandmothers’ first names as their middle names.


Ellis Stewart (Lafayette, LA) retired eight years ago for health reasons. “Before retirement, I was a production manager, master sound engineer, and a lighting director. Some of my clients included The Rolling Stones for five world tours, Tom Petty, The Black Crowes, and The Georgia Satellites, etc. Ronnie Wood was my son Graham’s godfather, and I was a pall bearer for Stevie Ray Vaughn.”


Cathy (Schwab) Prichard (Portland, ME) works for Maine Tourism as a travel counselor.


Katie Austing (Savannah, GA) lets us know, “We are in a life transition! Before settling in Savannah, Georgia, we decided to travel the world. We just spent three months in Europe — Prague, Budapest, Vienna, Salzburg, Italian Dolomites, Switzerland (St. Moritz and Zermatt), Dordogne region of France, Portugal, and Spain. We are currently in Australia and will head over to New Zealand before heading home for the holidays. We may continue traveling next spring. This is a long-time dream come true.”


Julie (Witten) Lloyd (Cincinnati) works as a fundraising consultant for Ignite Philanthropy.


Kalpana Kotagal (Cincinnati) started a new position as commissioner at U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.


Justin Kriendler (Chicago) lives in Chicago with his two kids (ages 5 and 8) and wife Lizzy. During the pandemic, John Lin ’98 invited him to join the board of John’s CO2 removal (CDR) research nonprofit. John’s ideas slowly gained traction in the CDR community and beyond. Dr. Damian Park-Bickett ’99 invited them to present their business ideas to his environmental econ class at Santa Clara University, and they received valuable feedback. In March 2022, with a third co-founder, they launched Tau Carbon to commercialize above-ground dry wood storage, and this past April, they oversubscribed their pre-seed round of funding. Justin reports that “our work is progressing rapidly; we have gained widespread acceptance for our approach and it’s tough to beat getting to start a successful business with an old friend.” In the photo, John and Justin are pictured testing out a small wood storage container in their office in Alameda, California. “Along the way, our team has met with a handful of Seven Hills alums. We met with Dave Richardson ’98 and Aaron Ellison ’98. We also talked to Mark Huntress ’98 and Matt Vitz ’98, who are both professors and each helped with their thoughtful questions and suggestions.”


Oliver Brooks (Brooklyn, NY) is a filmmaker who was recently accepted into the Director’s Guild of America as an assistant director and location manager after location managing the New Jersey portion of an upcoming Netflix film.


Julia Andress (Brooklyn, NY) currently works as a VP in finance at Link Logistics.

John Bloch (Cincinnati) and his wife Sarah welcomed a new baby in September. “Sarah and I are happy to announce that our newest son Jude arrived healthy and well on Sept. 19. Big brother Benny is adjusting great and can’t wait to introduce him to the Stinger Rumble.”

John Bloch (Cincinnati) and fellow alumni Gabe Davis ’03, Dave Schuh ’03, and Mark Mitchell ’03 recently attended a Bengals game together.


Katherine Menzies (Salt Lake City) works for Lucid Software as a group product manager.

Margot Wood (Portland, OR) and her husband Sean Willis (who met at Emerson College) had a baby! They welcomed daughter Maeve Willis Wood on Aug. 20 in Portland, Oregon.


Asia (Reid) Narayan shares, “We celebrated our sister Jessalyn’s ’08 wedding to Ryan Mahoney on June 10, 2022, in Washington, D.C. 


Peter Dumbadze (Brooklyn, NY) writes … “A few weeks ago, I was at a faculty get-together for the architecture department at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Like any sort of function with your co-workers, you are mingling amongst one another making small talk and trying to dutifully balance a plate with oddly cut pieces of cheese, crackers, and a plastic glass of the boxed wine that you’ll find at a departmental event.

“Eventually, I got around to talking with the interim dean of the college of architecture. A noted scholar on midcentury American architecture, I wanted to ask her about her experience interviewing Natalie de Blois, the primary architect for the Terrace Plaza Hotel in Downtown Cincinnati. I mentioned to her that I have a sofa from the hotel that I purchased in Cincinnati. A sofa that has already spawned its own interesting sagas (Dan Filardo ’06 can weigh in on this), it led to this following exchange [condensed for length and clarity]:

Dean: What were you doing in Cincinnati? Why would you go there for furniture?

Peter: [proudly] I’m from Cincinnati, and you get good deals on …

Dean: Where in Cincinnati are you from?

Peter: [quizzical expression on face] I’m from Hyde Park … Wait …

Dean: I grew up in East Walnut Hills when I was young. I lived on Keys Crescent …

Peter: [mouth agape] I went to Doherty. My brother went to Doherty. My aunt and my mother both went to CPS. The number of times I have driven down that street!

Dean: I used to go play on their playground; we had friends over on Johnstone Place. That’s a pretty old campus.

Peter: [very shocked by all of this] I played on that playground, too. I have run past your old house literally over a thousand times coming up from the cafeteria or coming from science class in Faran Hall … Wow, this is a small world.

[The dean and Peter proceed to talk about East Walnut Hills, the views of the Ohio River from the Doherty Campus and adjacent areas and established mutual family friends. And scene.]

Postscript: I should note that last fall, the dean and I were invited guest reviewers for a middle school architecture program that undergraduate architecture majors at NJIT were running. The students in the program had designed ideal playgrounds for their school. Now looking back on it, the dean and I, when referencing our childhood experiences on play sets and the like, were quite literally referring to the SAME PLAYGROUND.”

Lily Yan (New York City) shares that she has a 1-year-old baby boy named Kai. 


Mary Taliaferro (Cincinnati) shares, “I have some big news to share about the next chapter of my career as a financial adviser! I’ve joined Wealth Enhancement Group and am thrilled to partner with Mary Herrington, CFP.”


Baker Leyman (Chicago) started a new position as associate director at EssenceMediacom.


Adam Buford (Philadelphia) started a new position as an MBA candidate at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. 

Kristin Stratman (Jeffersonville, IN) started a new position as technical writer at Amatrol.


Catherine Bain (Norman, OK) started a new position as instructor of record at University of Oklahoma – Department of Psychology.

Anna Davis (Cincinnati) started a new position as director of Volleyball Operations at University of Cincinnati Department of Athletics.

Jared Fisher (Los Angeles) started a new position as associate at 4B Advisory.

Brian Hills (Cincinnati) started a new position as law clerk at Dinsmore & Shohl LLP.


Lukas Geiger (New York City) shares that he has recently become NYU’s rowing coach. He is also working for Google as a customer engineer. He works in the Generative AI space in Google Cloud. 

Piper Spooner (Charlotte, NC) started a new position as teaching fellow at Providence Day School. She shares that Bill Waskowitz and Matt Bolton were amazing resources who connected her to a huge network of independent schools.


Mary Grace (Ramsay) Mantica (Indianapolis) started a new position as graduate assistant for Pre-Professional & Career Preparation at School of Science at IUPUI and also got married this summer (July 8, 2023) to Nicolette Mantica. “We got married in Carmel, Indiana. Nick Purple ’18 played violin at our ceremony.” 


Claire Harrison (Chicago) tells us, “After I graduated in May from Loyola with a bachelor’s in global studies and a bachelor’s in poli sci, I was hired by their undergraduate admissions office in July. This year, I’m recruiting for Loyola in Indiana, central Texas, southern California, and the Chicago suburbs. Aside from being an admission counselor, I am also the office’s faculty visit coordinator, scheduling meetings between prospective students and faculty members. I help organize special group visits as well! Once fall travel ends, I will start reading applications in late October and meeting with admitted students and their families in the spring. I also hope to start working on my master’s through Loyola by the end of 2024!”

Gaurav Kilaru (New York City) started a new position as research analyst at Jigsaw Productions.

Tessa Robinson (Chicago) started a new position as staffing consultant at Beacon Hill Staffing Group.

Drew Vecellio (Los Angeles) started a new position as legal assistant/management analyst at the Department of Justice Executive Office of Immigration Review.

Michael Weirich (Dallas, TX) started at Bain and Company as an associate strategy consultant in the Dallas, TX office in mid-October.