class notes

1960

Hugh Bassham, DVM ’63 published “Better Health and a Plan to Achieve It: The Dawning of a New Day and a New You,” a book of wisdom compiled from his 1993 book “The Search for Total Health” and his 2007 booklet “A Plan for Better Health.” Bassham’s new book bridges the gap between physical and spiritual health as well as The Auburn Creed. 

John Junkins ’65 and Klaus Dannenberg ’67, both Auburn aerospace engineering alumni, received two of the highest awards in the field of aerospace at the annual awards gala of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. In Washington, D.C., Junkins received the Goddard Astronautics Award “for advances in aerospace research and education, for creating an institute for promoting scientific excellence, and for enabling contributions in spacecraft navigation, dynamics and control.” Dannenberg received the Distinguished Service Award “for five decades of significant contributions to AIAA that created greatly enhanced value and more meaningful opportunities for the institute’s traditional and evolving constituencies.”


Jimmy Harris ’68 was appointed by Governor Kay Ivey as administrator for the Alabama Manufactured Homes Commission in Montgomery. Harris retired from Auburn University in 2013. He and his wife Linda live in Pike Road, Ala.

William E. Barrick ph.d. ’68,  (below) executive director of Bellingrath Garden and Home in Mobile, Ala., is the winner of the 2019 American Public Gardens Association’s Service Award. The award honors an individual who has shown selfless service to the organization through work as a professional committee service member and/or board member. Barrick has served as executive director of the public garden and estate since 1999, and previously was executive vice president and director of gardens at Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Ga. for nearly 20 years. Barrick is also an affiliate professor in ornamental horticulture at Auburn and has served on the Auburn University Agricultural Advisory Committee. Barrick retired from Bellingrath Garden and Home in July 2019.


1970s

Stephen Frakes ’70 is still serving as a captain for Paradigm Air Carriers, piloting Boeing 757 sports charter flights for various Major League Baseball, NBA and NHL teams. Over the past 12 years, his passengers have included the Texas Rangers, the Colorado Rockies, the Seattle Mariners, the Houston Rockets, the Dallas Stars and the Phoenix Coyotes.

Phyllis Day Davis ’72 and Catherine Goodwin ’96 (above) attended the 47th Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race at Willow, Alaska on March 3, 2019.

M. Susan Harper ’72 retired from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama on July 1, 2015.

Teri Williams Easterling ’74 retired May 24, 2019 from the National Woman’s Missionary Union after more than 42 years as copy editor for preschool curriculum, marketing and more. Easterling taught elementary school in DeKalb County, Ga. and Talladega County, Ala., before going to work at Western Michigan University.

H. Clayton Ingram Jr. ’75 retired December 31, 2018 after 43 years in the banking business with Regions Bank. For the past 12 years, Ingram has served as the Cullman City president and market manager.

Thomas W. Tripp ’75 sold his tax and investment management businesses in October 2018 after 43 years in the industry. Together with his wife Tricia, they plan to catch up on a lot of travel. “I have come full circle from a trailer on Wire Road in 1975 to a motor coach we use for home games on Wire Road in 2018,” Tripp said.

James “Luke” Flatt ’75, chair, president and CEO of AB&T Albany, has been selected by his peers to serve as vice chair on the board of directors of the Georgia Bankers Association.

Dana Wright ’79 and her husband Dr. David Wright have accepted a three-year term for hosting guests at the United Church of Christ Reform House on the grounds of Chautauqua Institute in western New York.

1980s

Leigh Riley Bloom ’80 remarried and is now a partner in the Promo Agency, a consulting and production firm that provides clients across the country with branded promotional gifts, items and merchandise.

Freida Scoggins Baker ’82 was recently appointed executive director of The Child Welfare Policy and Practice Group (CWG) based in Montgomery, Ala. CWG offers national assistance to agencies and organizations seeking to improve social work practice and outcomes in child welfare, and to strengthen child welfare systems across the country. Baker has 36 years in child welfare, retiring from Alabama State’s Department of Human Resources in 2017 as deputy director of Family Services.

Charles Stein ’82 and his wife Batya welcomed their daughter, Shaina Sarah, on June 16, 2019.

Mark A. Widdowson ’87 was named interim department head of the Charles E. Via Jr. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Virginia Tech University. Widdowson came to Virginia Tech in 1993 and has served as assistant department head since 2009. He has received numerous accolades, including the Samuel Arnold Greeley Award by the American Society of Civil Engineers Environmental and Water Resources Institute, the College of Engineering’s Certificate of Teaching Excellence, and the Outstanding Civil Engineering Faculty award.

Roger Shannon ’87 was named chief financial officer and treasurer of Charah Solutions, a leading provider of environmental and maintenance services to the power-generation industry. A certified personal accountant and CFA charter holder with more than 30 years of corporate financing and accounting experience, Shannon joins Charah Solutions from ADTRAN, where he has served as CFO, senior vice president of finance, treasurer and head of corporate development since 2015.

Roger D. Wylie ’88 was named managing partner of Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP’s Seattle office. Wylie will focus his practice on patent prosecution and counseling, as well as advising startups, established corporations, venture investors and intellectual property stakeholders regarding all aspects of patent prosecution and acquisition. Wylie has been recognized by Washington Super Lawyers for intellectual property every year since 2008. 

Sundaram Nagarajan ’88 was named president and CEO of Nordson Corporation, manufacturer of precision-dispensing equipment for industrial adhesives. The former executive vice president of the Fortune 200 company Illinois Tool Works Inc., Nagarajan’s new position began August 1, 2019.

Christina Scranton Badowski ’88 recently retired after 29 years as a classroom teacher and a school media specialist. Badowski worked in Russell, Muscogee and Harris counties in first and second grade before moving into the media center. She now volunteers at her church, Epworth United Methodist, in Phenix City, Ala.

Tom E. Spencer ’89, a Curators Distinguished Professor in the Division of Animal Sciences in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources at the University of Missouri, was elected to the National Academy of Sciences, one of the highest honors a U.S. scientist can receive. Spencer is internationally recognized for his research in reproductive and developmental biology, in which he studies the development and function of the uterus and placenta to define critical physiological and genetic pathways regulating the establishment and maintenance of pregnancy.

1990s

Jennifer Lang ’91 was selected to participate in the Editorial Integrity and Leadership Initiative for public media journalists. This six-month program focuses on strengthening journalists’ ability to lead public media newsrooms and uphold the highest editorial standards. As senior editor, digital and product, for WFAE in Charlotte, N.C., Lang prepares content for the public radio station’s digital platforms and oversees the implementation of audience-development tools.

Jacob Davis ’93 was named executive director of the Alabama Peanut Producers Association (APPA), an affiliate of the Alabama Farmer’s Federation that serves over 900 peanut farmers. As executive director, Davis will monitor federal policy issues impacting peanut farmers, oversee promotions for Alabama-grown peanuts, work on research projects with stakeholders like Auburn University and manage the day-to-day operations of APPA’s Dothan office.

Jon Owens ’93 was named assistant headmaster of Chambers Academy in Lafayette, Ala. Owens previously served as assistant principal at both Wadley High School in Randolph County and Stephens Elementary in Alexander City, Ala.

Jason Estes ’93 was promoted to business unit manager of Dewberry’s office in Daphne, Ala. Estes has been with the engineering firm the last 20 years, working on civil engineering projects in residential land development, sanitary sewer and water systems, watershed and drainage modeling and highway design and construction. Estes has nearly three decades of civil engineering experience; for the last 20 years he has worked in Daphne.

Tara Wilson ’97 was named to Inc. Magazine’s 2017 list of the nation’s fastest-growing companies. Her experiential marketing firm the Tara Wilson Agency works with clients such as Samsung, Nike and Ann Taylor.

Brad T. Culligan ’97 has been promoted to the rank of colonel in the U.S. Army. In June 2019, Culligan graduated from the National Defense University’s Eisenhower School in Washington, D.C. and was assigned to serve in the Pentagon as director, U.S. Transportation Command, Joint Staff Liaison Office, Washington, D.C.

David Williams ’97 was named news director of FOX affiliate WFXG TV in Augusta, Ga. The current news director for KCBD in Lubbock, Texas, Williams previously worked as a news director for KPLC in Lake Charles, La. In August, Williams will be reunited with his former general manager Denise Vickers at WFXG.

Megan McCall ’98, the science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM) coordinator for Bayside Academy in Daphne, Ala. was part of an expedition team that captured video of a giant squid in its deep-water habitat about 100 miles off the shore of New Orleans. It was the second time a giant squid had been filmed and the first time in U.S. waters.

Steven Raymond ’99 and his wife, Carie, welcomed the birth of their daughter, Piper Jane, on April 18, 2019.

Corey Maze ’99 was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to a lifetime appointment as a federal judge for Alabama’s northern district after being nominated by President Donald Trump. Maze served as Alabama assistant attorney general starting in 2003. From 2008-2011, he was the state’s solicitor general, and has been deputy attorney general since 2011.

Jason Cato ’99 is vice president of sales for Americas for Sage Parts in Melville, N.Y. Cato joined Sage in June with responsibility for sales strategy, execution and profitability in North and South America while residing remotely in Atlanta.

2000s

Jason C. Howk ’00, a retired major with the U.S. Army, won the gold medal from the The National Indie Excellence Awards for his 2017 book “The Qur’an: A Chronological Modern English Interpretation.” Howk is in his fourth year of interfaith work across the nation and helps to increase tolerance and promote understanding between religions.

Melissa Moon Lord ’02 graduated May 2019 with a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) from Samford University. Lord is currently a faculty member at Vanderbilt University School of Nursing.

Chris Pope ’03, a partner with Pavese Law Firm, was recognized by the Florida Bar with board certification in condominium and planned development law. Pope became a partner with Pavese in 2018 and practices primarily in condominium and homeowner’s law, construction law and real estate law at the firm’s Fort Myers, Fla. office.

Ashley Gilbreath ’04, an award-winning interior designer specializing in casual, elegant spaces, was named a finalist for the 2019 Atlanta Decorative Art Center’s Southeast Designer of the Year. Her work has been featured nationally in Southern Living, House Beautiful, Country Living, Coastal Living and in a pilot for a show on HGTV called “Sweet Home Renovation.” Gilbreath lives in Montgomery with her husband Barrett Gilbreath ’04.

Frank “Chip” Turner V ’04 and his wife, Lauren Nickel Turner, welcomed their first child, Avery Elizabeth, on June 7, 2019. Born into her own “Auburn Family,” Avery’s family includes grandparents Frank “Pat” Turner IV ’74, Venelia Hill Turner ’72, Ron E. Nickel ’77 and her aunt Laura K. Turner ’98.

Tiffany Golden Morris ’05 was named corporate communications manager at IronMountain Solutions, a small business in Huntsville, Ala. specializing in cybersecurity, programmatic solutions, software and hardware engineering.

Zachary George ’06, Navy reserve lieutenant, was recently mobilized from his home in Germany and is serving as the assistant officer in charge on board USNS Yuma in the Mediterranean Sea.

Aaron Chastain ’07 was made   a partner at national law firm Bradley, representing financial services institutions, healthcare companies and other businesses   in a broad range of litigation and compliance-related matters. He and his wife Kathryn Chastain ’07 celebrated the birth of their son, Thomas Aaron, on Jan. 16, 2019.

Kevin Kretschmar ’08 and his wife Alexandra Kretschmar ’10 welcomed the birth of their daughter, Claire Eloise, on April 7, 2019.

Cindy Smith ’09 recently opened a new Edward Jones branch in Decatur, Ala. where she serves her clients as financial advisor. Smith and her husband, Byron Smith ’08, live in Decatur with their one-year-old daughter Adeline.

2010s

Elizabeth (Levy) Sullivan ’10 and Ian Sullivan ’10 welcomed the birth of their son, Emmett James, on May 2, 2019.

Tiffany Tuma ’11 was accepted to Jackson State University’s executive Ph.D. program in urban higher education. Tuma begins the two-year program in the fall of 2019.

Jeriod Turner ’12, a financial advisor representative with Benson Financial Group in Hannibal, Mo., has been authorized by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards to use the Certified Financial Planner and CFP certifications. Previously, Turner served in the U.S. Army for eight years and served two tours in the Middle East, as well as working in the banking industry for more than 10 years before entering the financial services profession.

Andreas Mies ’13 won the 2019 French Open men’s doubles title with teammate and fellow German Kevin Krawietz, despite being unseeded in the tournament. They beat Fabrice Martin and Jeremy Chardy of France for the Grand Slam victory. At Auburn, Mies was a four-year letterwinner and All-American in singles and doubles. An All-SEC player as well, the native of Cologne, Germany was the 2012 ITA All-American champion.

Cam Newton ’15 opened Fellaship, a cigar lounge and restaurant in the Centennial Park neighborhood of Atlanta, Ga. Meyer Davis Studio, a global, New York City-based design boutique owned by Will Meyer ’93 and Gray Davis ’89, designed the lounge.

Amanda Harris Stanley ’15 and Christopher Stanley ’14 welcomed their first child, Reagan Olivia, on January 26, 2019.

Nicholas Ellison ’15, a 2018 graduate of the Harrison School of Pharmacy (HSOP), married Anne Saunders ’16 on May 11, 2019. Nic currently works as a pharmacist at Publix, while Anne, a 2019 graduate of the HSOP, will begin work as a pharmacist for Kroger. The couple lives in Auburn, Ala.

Amy Briggs ’18 has been selected for the Summer Artist-In-Residence Program at Odyssey Clay Works in Asheville, N.C. During this 12-week program, participants split their time between personal studio work and teaching youth ceramics classes.

Elizabeth Stewart ’19 departed for 27 months of service in Guinea with the Peace Corps. The general science education major left July 1, 2019 to live with a host family for three months, immersing herself in the culture and language before being formally sworn into service and assigned a community where she will live and work for the next two years. A focus of Stewart’s efforts will be completing sustainable, community-based development projects that improve the lives of Guineans for years to come. Stewart joins 12 other Auburn Tigers currently serving in the Peace Corps, and more than 321 who have served since the program began in 1961.

Mike Patterson ’19, retired staff sgt., (above) was named the 2019 Be the Creed recipient, an award given by the Office of Student Conduct to a current Auburn student who exemplifies the lines of the Auburn Creed. Following nine years in the United States Air Force, Patterson enrolled in Auburn where, as a student-veteran, he served as vice president of the Auburn Student Veterans Association (ASVA), organized the ASVA golf tournament (which raised almost $10,000), worked on the committee to host the ASVA Fall Gala and was instrumental in establishing Operation Iron Ruck. He graduated in May 2019 with a degree in economics.