Class Notes | Obituaries
Showing class notes submitted in the last year by graduates in the 2000s
Richard S. Smudin MBA ’00 recently took command of the 354th Civil Affairs Brigade. He has had 27 years of military service. Colonel Smudin's most recent assignments include Battalion Commander of the 3rd Battalion of the 304th Infantry Regiment (United States Military Academy), Chief of the Civil Information Management Cell at the 353d Civil Affairs Command, and Chief of the Functional Specialty Team at the 353d Civil Affairs Command. His operational deployments include service as the Mobilization Plans Officer at Fort Drum in 2003, Civil Affairs Team Leader in Baghdad, Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom II - III, and Division Engagements Officer for the Commander of Multi-National Division North at Contingency Operating Base Speicher Iraq during OIF 2007-2009.
Stephanie Rocha '00, J.D. '09 appeared in the Silicon Valley Business Journal’s 2014 40 Under 40 list. She is an associate attorney at Miller Morton Cailat & Nevis LLP, where Rocha represents developers, builders and prime contractors in construction litigation, including defect and payment disputes. She also represents real estate agents and brokers, homeowners, landlords, tenants and other individuals and entities in a variety of real estate- and business-related matters.
Freshman Dorm: Graham 400
Dennis O'Malley '95 +1 = SCU Grad Wife Tanya (Montano) '96, JD '99, 3 Daughters (Selma 11, Mila 9, Isla 6). Live in San Carlos.
www.linkedin.com/in/domalley @dennis_omalley www.facebook.com/dennis.omalley
Jeff Nishita MBA ’00 has joined Novogradac & Company LLP, a San Francisco-based accounting and consulting firm that specializes in affordable housing, community development, historic preservation and renewable energy tax credits. Nishita performs numerous services in the real estate industry, including audit and tax services, consulting, forecasting and training. He works with for-profit and nonprofit developers, syndicators and direct investors.
Mr. Nishita speaks at various affordable housing conferences throughout the year and is in charge of maintaining the firm’s Financial Forecast Model. He is also the founder of the firm’s community service program and one of the founders of the firm’s LIHTC Working Group, a membership organization that addresses technical issues in the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program.
Before joining Novogradac & Company LLP, Mr. Nishita worked with several start-up companies and small businesses in executive positions.
Magda Marcu '00 is the a cofounder of Sailo, a peer to peer boat rental platform.
Kristen Lewis '00 married Brian Howards on May 10, 2014, in San Francisco.
Crystal Lequang-Gonzales ’00 is celebrating the 10th anniversary of her company, Amazae Events Inc. The company has recently relocated to Willow Glen with an expanded team, where Gonzales continues to provide exceptional event planning and design services for corporate functions, social gatherings, and wedding celebrations.
www.amazae.com www.facebook.com/AmazaeSpecialEvents www.yelp.com/biz/amazae-special-events-san-jose
Carmen Huerta-Bapat '00 and husband Navin Bapat welcomed their third baby, Neela Valentina, on February 9, 2015. Neela joins her two sisters, Catarina Ines (6) and Naima Isabel (3). The family lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Jane Duong Davaransky ’00 created a petition on www.change.org to ask Medela, a leading manufacturer of breast pumps, to create a program to recycle old breast pumps. After 2,002 signatures, Medela responded by creating a recycling program called Medela Recycles. Each pump received through Medela Recycles supports the donation of new hospital-grade, multiuse breastpumps and supplies to Ronald McDonald House Charities to support parents who have babies in the NICU. Medela expects to recycle 12,000 pumps with this program. As of mid-January 2015, the company has recycled 171 pumps.
Freshman Dorm: Campisi
Suzanne (Lyons) Colvin '00, M.A. '15 loved her time at SCU so much that she decided to go back for more! Suzanne completed her master's in educational administration in June 2015. She is currently the Leadership Academy director and AP biology teacher at Presentation High School, in San Jose. Suzanne lives with her husband, Brent, and their cats in San Jose.
Janelle (Pereira) Charles ’00, husband Ryan, and big brother Mason (3) welcomed identical twin baby boys, Tyler and Aiden, on Nov. 24, 2014. The family lives in Morgan Hill.
Sowmya Ayyar '00 lives in Bangalore, India, and is the founder and executive director of Prafull Oorja Charitable Foundation, an organization co-founded with Madeleine Sears '11. Prafull Oorja brings yoga and other holistic practices to populations in need, such as special needs children and rural women.
Pascal Stang '98 and Hilary Armstrong '00 welcomed baby Alexa Marguerite Carina on March 22, 2015. They live in San Jose.
Saina Shamilov J.D. '01 was named to the Silicon Valley Business Journal’s 2015 Women of Influence annual list. This list comprises “100 women rocking Silicon Valley business” who have made a big impact across all professions. By day, Saina Shamilov is a star in intellectual property litigation. As a partner at Mountain View’s Fenwick & West LLP, she has helped successfully defend Amazon.com and Zillow in patent cases. Last year, she led a pro bono team that won a preliminary injunction on behalf of an ill inmate, in which the U.S. District Court directed the prison to provide the inmate with a medically appropriate diet. By night, Shamilov is a competitive ballroom dancer. She competes all over the country and won a national title in Latin dance in 2010.
Natalie (Eblacas) Murphy '80, MBA '01 writes, "I have recently relocated to Bremerton, Washington, and am looking to connect with SCU Alumni in the area."
Gladys (Garcia) Lopez '01 and her husband, Ivan Lopez, are proprieters of Ultimate Performance & Fitness, which was selected for the 2015 Best of Westlake Village Award. Their business, which was recognized in the Gym category for the third year in a row, was selected for enhancing the positive image of small businesses through service to their customers and the community.
Ultimate Performance & Fitness is one of the largest private personal training facilities in the Conejo Valley, with nearly 5,000 square feet of new top-of-the-line cardio and strength equipment. All personal trainers that train clients at UPF must meet strict qualifications in terms of professionalism, training, education and level of certification. These gifted certified personal trainers must also continue to educate themselves in the latest fitness and healthy trends and innovations to better serve the clients of the Conejo Valley.
Mark "Rusty" Johnson '01 is in his first year as head coach of De Anza College’s men’s soccer team and was named the Coast Conference Coach of the Year. Prior, he was an assistant coach at Santa Clara University for 10 years. Johnson decided he wanted to coach a team of his own. During his years playing at Santa Clara University, Johnson played in two College Cups and one National Championship game. His expertise has been recognized throughout the game, giving him a respectful reputation.
Courtney Ireland '01 married Josh Ireland on November 12, 2011, at the Mission Church. She writes, "Had our beautiful baby girl Kennedy James on November 21, 2014. Moved to Fresno in July of this year to be closer to family. Would love to connect with any alumni in the area!"
Angel Diaz ’99 and Alma Diaz Parra ’01 welcomed their second child, Antonio Ernesto, on Oct. 27, 2014. He joins big brother Eduardo Angel who is three years old and the family resides in Los Angeles.
Nicholas Buccola '01, associate professor of political science at Linfield College, received the Samuel H. Graf Faculty Achievement Award, which recognizes a faculty member who has made an outstanding contribution to the life of the college that extends beyond his or her regular duties. Buccola earned an Enduring Questions grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, recognizing the innovative design for his course, What is Freedom? This past year, Buccola has published or had accepted for publication nine separate works, and he currently has two book contracts. He coordinates the successful Frederick Douglass Forum on Law, Rights, and Justice, which has brought a wide range of world-class scholars to Linfield and provided a forum for discussion for faculty, students and the McMinnville community.
Rafael Zavala '02 writes, "After eight years away from our native land, Pearl Barros '05, Violet Barros-Zavala (18 months), and I have finally returned from Boston, Massachusetts."
Jimmy Williams ’02 is an assistant professor at the University of Maryland. He writes on the Santa Clara University blog, "I have been working on an approach to identify concrete signatures of the Majorana particle. In some sense, the work I participated in with Professor Betty Young doing research for the Cryogenic Dark Matter Search (CDMS) looking for exotic particles has come full circle. It’s a great job! I have a big lab and a bunch of money to do whatever physics I want. It doesn’t get any better than that."