Springfield College Alumni Class Notes | Springfield College

Springfield College Alumni Class Notes

alumni council
We are excited to announce our newest Alumni Council leaders! Congratulations to our next President Nate Harris '08 and Vice President Stacey Hall '91. We are extremely grateful for the leadership and guidance of Peg Ferguson Boyd, G'95, and Anthony Sarage '00 who have been dedicated to these roles and to our volunteer leadership over the last six years.
(Pictured L-R: Hall, Harris, Boyd, Sarage) Great things are coming in 2024, and beyond! If you are interested in learning more about the Alumni Council, and/or volunteer opportunities, please email alumni@springfield.edu.

In this section, you will find alumni updates submitted May 31, 2024 through June 30, 2024. Thanks for sharing your news! Please direct any future submissions to alumni@springfield.edu.

By: Maria D'Agostino Crawford '91 and Damon Markiewicz 

The NCAA has announced that Springfield College alumna Dr. Deena Casiero '99 has been named its new chief medical officer. Casiero earned her bachelor's degree in athletic training from Springfield College. As chief medical officer, Casiero will serve as the primary liaison to the Association on matters of student-athlete mental and physical health, safety and performance. She also will oversee the operation and management of the Sport Science Institute and work collaboratively with the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports, which is the membership health and safety committee for the NCAA. Casiero is the 2020 recipient of the Springfield College Distinguished Alumna Award. Congratulations!

It’s not every day you get to celebrate a national championship with alumni by your side! Harrison Kelly '18 and Emily McDermott '23, who both work with the women’s lacrosse team at Boston College, met up with SC women's lacrosse alumna Arielle Johnson '23 and Carlee Crispens '23, after BC clinched the 2024 NCAA DI championship in Cary, NC. (Pictured L to R: Crispens, Johnson, McDermott, Kelly).

Hira Byrne Paulin '12, G'13, recently earned her PhD in Health Sciences from Northern Illinois University. What made this accomplishment even more special was that her dissertation chair, Dr. Daniel Boutin '97, G'00,  like Hira, is also a graduate of the Rehabilitation Counseling master's program at Springfield College. Hira also recently had the pleasure of being invited by WNEU Professor Natalee Rolince Pender '12, G'14, to be a guest lecturer for occupational therapy students. The day was dedicated to discussing veteran reintegration and care. This was a unique experience as it is the first time Hira presented this topic alongside her spouse, GySgt Matthew Paulin.

During the closing ceremony of the 94th edition of Outdoor Pursuits at East Campus, alumna Cara Loux '07 was recognized for 20 years of service at Outdoor Pursuits, earning the Outdoor Pursuits Distinguished Service Award. In 94 years, only 15 individuals have achieved this honor. Joining Loux for the ceremony were previous award recipients Mark Kenton '94, G '96, Professor Ted France '91, G'93, Loux and Director of East Campus and Outdoor Programs Ben Taylor '99, G'15.  

Springfield College is well represented within Sacred Heart University Athletics. This past spring, Audrey Dolan '24 had the opportunity to intern with Kelsey Armstrong, G'18, associate athletics director, student athlete support services, and Jack Pinho '18, G'20, assistant athletic director, student support services. Professor Mike Theulen, DPE '83, had the opportunity to visit with the trio as Audrey was 
wrapping up her internship.

Joe Manning '24 is excited to announce that he will be joining the Springfield Thunderbirds of the American Hockey League as an inside sales specialist for the upcoming 2024-25 season.

Nick Ruffler '24 was recently promoted to business development specialist with the NBA's Cleveland Cavaliers.

Stuart Sokoloff '17 is the manager, group & season ticket sales for Athletes Unlimited, a network of professional women's sports leagues that include basketball, softball, volleyball and lacrosse. Sokoloff was recently highlighted in a story by The Scouting Report.

Congratulations to Colby Wilson '23 who has been named the assistant director, student-athlete development at the University of Pittsburgh.

On the brink of retiring from a career in higher education, Dr. Cheryl Braxton '91, G'94, began writing her first printed work of historically based fiction, The Doctors' Inn. This novel was inspired by wanting to know more about her bi-racial ancestry and her family's struggles and successes. Cheryl's career spanned more than 30 years as an administrator and professor at both the college and university levels. She earned her Doctorate in Education at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She currently teaches sociology courses that analyze the effects of power on race, class and socio-economic status.

Jens Omli, G'04, PhD, recently published How Heroes Hero. With insights from the greatest heroes of our past, Omli reveals 11 principles of heroism and provides clear guidance for your journey ahead.  

Congratulations to Luise Schnaars Easton '60, who won numerous medals at the USA Triathlon Multisport National Championships Festival in Omaha, Nebraska. In 2023 she received the Cleveland Sports Commission Golden Athlete Award.

It has been an exciting year this year for Monroe Abram, G'88, as he has been named the High School Athletic Trainer of the Year by the Southeastern Athletic Trainers Association (SEATA) and the recipient of the Bill Chisolm Award, which recognizes an individual who has contributed to the development and enhancement of ethnically diverse athletic trainers. 

"I'm honored and humbled to be this year's recipient of the Bill Chisolm Award. I just try to use the path and example laid by those athletic trainers, especially those of ethnically diverse backgrounds, that came before me by infusing them with my own ideas and experiences to continue inspiring teaching and encouraging ethnic diverse athletic trainers, students and athletes to let them know they aren't alone. I smile seeing them succeed in the profession," says Abram.

"This story is long but awesome," writes Jennifer Gray Wills '04. "I met Colin Drury, G'12, at the National Recreation and Park Association Conference in Dallas last year. He told me he is from Massachusetts, and we find out we are both Springfield College alumni! He asked me if I was going to be at the Washington Recreation and Park Association Conference this past April, and I explained of course, I haven't missed it in 17 years. He then proceeds to ask 'do you wear your Springfield gear on Alumni night?' I let him know sadly that I don't and they don't sell a lot of that in Washington. Seven months later, I walked into the conference and there's Colin holding a Springfield shirt for me! Literally so kind and the most thoughtful present and honored to rep our school while surrounded by Huskies, Cougars, Eagles, Wildcats, Ducks, and Beavers!!"

Shared by Betsy Jeffers Moquin '90, "Graduation is always an exciting time of year as it signifies new beginnings.  This winter the Springfield College Alumni Relations team reached out and asked us to write 10 notes to members of the Class of 2024. These notes were placed in diplomas and helped connect the new grads to their strong alumni network from the very moment they crossed the stage. Marissa Moquin '19, DPT '21, and I had a great time crafting our messages (written, of course, with maroon pens). Today I happened to meet a fellow alum for the first time and we talked about what a wonderful experience it was. Never underestimate the power of a handwritten note - and a really amazing and creative Alumni Relations team."
If you are interested in writing to either the incoming Class of 2028 or our 2025 graduates, please email alumni@springfield.edu. Thank you!

Thank you so much to Polina Bodner Shapiro '00, who recently housed Springfield College occupational therapy student Kayla Cerveira '22, G'24, while Kayla completed fieldwork at Meadowbrook of Granby in Granby, CT. It is because of alumni like Polina that Springfield College students are able take advantage of opportunities they may not otherwise have. If you are interested in the possibility of housing a Springfield College student or you are a student in need of housing during an internship or clinical rotation, contact Maria D'Agostino Crawford '91, associate director, alumni relations at mcrawford@springfield.edu for more information.

Congratulations to Justin Fellows '21, member experience executive at the Boston Celtics, who had an experience of a lifetime as the Celtics claimed their record breaking 18th NBA Championship. 

Says Fellows, "As a member experience executive, I have the incredible opportunity to manage and renew 500 season ticket members' accounts, while ensuring their experience is above and beyond. Having now worked in the NBA for three seasons, I can confidently say my time at Springfield College in the Sport Management program has equipped me to excel in this fast paced environment. My time at Springfield College, with its rigorous classes, impactful professors, and comprehensive Sport Management curriculum, has been instrumental in my success as a member experience executive with the Boston Celtics. Springfield College means a great deal to me, as it's where I met some of my lifelong friends and I learned the importance of spirit, mind and body, which helps me stay balanced in my career and life. Memories for a lifetime!"  

Michelle Poulin Kinsella '95, G'97, completed the Abbott World Marathon  Majors in Tokyo this past March 2024. There are only 5,734 woman in the world that have completed all six marathons (Boston, New York, Chicago, Berlin, London, and Tokyo). Michelle runs these marathons to raise funds for the Semper Fi and Americas Fund (SFAF), an organization that supports our injured service-members. Her team has raised $446,838 for the SFAF.

"Even after 25 marathons, I still don’t consider myself an athlete," said Michelle. "I find running to be a way to strengthen and care for my spirit, mind and body. I share these experiences with my 800 Framingham Public School fifth graders, where I have taught elementary health for 27 years." 

Congratulations are also in order for Rob Crain '04, senior director for corporate partnerships for the Boston Celtics.  

"The whole championship week felt like a dream. I remember watching the 2004 Red Sox parade soon after I graduated from Springfield College. Never could I've imagined that I'd be on the duck boat in my life. I'm appreciative to mentors at SC like Bob Accorsi, G'80, who were foundational to my career," says Crain.

Mark St. Pierre '72 shared that he is currently working on the production of "With You In Spirit."  Written by Mark, "With You In Spirit" is a unique, Native-made feature film project currently being produced on the Pine Ridge Native American Reservation in South Dakota. Production began on June 18, 2024, and is expected to continue to run through the summer months. The cast and crew of the film are all local, most of them living on the reservation, who have been attending filmmaking workshops and cast rehearsals for the past few months. The film project was made possible through a grant from the Department of Agriculture to the non-profit Native arts school, Cloud Horse Art Institute and the Reel Jobs Film School, located in Kyle, South Dakota, which is on the northern edge of Pine Ridge. You can view the movie trailer and the behind the scenes documentary for "With You In Spirit" using the links below.
"With You In Spirit" Behind the Scenes Documentary:   https://vimeo.com/969301325/97a47d1af3?share=copy
"With You In Spirit" Project Development Trailer: https://vimeo.com/967413508?share=copy
Pete '84,G'85, and Kiersten Wood Wildeboer '86 have so much to catch everyone up on. Kiersten retired in 2016 after working 30 years as a physical education teacher. Pete retired in 2019 after years as a teacher, coach, athletic director, and Principal. In retirement, Pete was asked to run for New Hanover County Schools Board of Education. He successfully joined the Board in 2020 and was re-elected in 2022. He is currently serving his second year as the Chairman of the Board. Kiersten and Pete have three wonderful children and have been blessed with four wonderful grandchildren, with a fifth on the way. Together with their step grandson, they will soon have six grandchildren.
Kristen Brosius, G'08, has accepted a new position as a Lead Associate on the Health, Equity and Well-Being (HEW) team at WTW.
Joe Banach '11 is proud to have been part of building USA Football's long term partnership with Under Armour and is excited as the two organizations work together to innovate and elevate the sport of football from the grassroots level to the Olympics.
Ryan Levine '13 has been hired by Amherst College as a Leadership Gift Officer.
R. John Reidy '13, G' 21, recently started a new position as Senior Director of Human Resources and Leadership Development at the YMCA of Greater Springfield.
Brendan Dooley '17, G'20, is starting a new position as Account Executive at StartEngine.
Kayla Padroff '18 has been promoted to Assistant Athletic Director at Cheshire Academy.
Mikey Blazejowski '20, G'22, has been named Strength & Conditioning Assistant/Performance Science Associate at the Indianapolis Colts.
Niles Turner '20 is starting a new position as Product Management Development Program Manager at Travelers.
Nora Fitzgerald '21 is an Equity Specialist, Support and Education Coordinator with the Civil Rights and Equity Office at the University of New Hampshire.
Meghan Krasnow PysD '21 is the newly named Director of Student-Athlete Well-Being at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.
Brian Lanyon '21 has announced he is now working as Baseball Technology Assistant and Official Scorer at Mystic Schooners Baseball.
Ryan Welch '21, G'24, has accepted an adjunct teaching position at Western New England University.  He will be teaching an undergraduate section of Psych 101 this fall.
Marissa Paolangeli '22 has graduated from The George Washington University - Milken Institute School of Public Health (MPH) in Health Policy and Management.  She will be working as a Senior Consultant, Health Policy Analyst at Booz Allen Hamilton.
Noah Diamond '23 is starting as Surety Underwriting Trainee at the Hanover Insurance Group.
Makayla Parris, G'23, has spent the last 12 months working at Special Olympics of Massachusetts.
Collin Dagg '24 has been named Assistant Site Director/Assistant Unit Director at the MetroWest YMCA.
DJ Katella, G'24, graduated from Springfield College with a Master of Education in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with a concentration in Athletic Counseling.  After spending the past academic year as a Graduate Extern at the Center for Counseling and Student Development at the University of Delaware, DJ will be staying on as an Associate Mental Health Clinician and working towards gaining his LPCMH in Delaware.
Eliza Keogh, G'24, will be spending another summer at Springfield College's East Campus, this year as Assistant Camp Director for Camp Massasoit.