Share your latest news with fellow Broncos.
Class Notes | Obituaries
Showing class notes submitted in last 6 months by graduates in the 1980s
Chicago attorney Steve Smith J.D. '80 has launched Legal Ally, a law firm specializing in small businesses and entrepreneurship. His specialty focuses on startups, women-owned businesses, and LGBT entrepreneurs. The firm offers clients a combined 36 years of legal experience. Legal Ally's mission is to provide excellent service from experienced lawyers at large global firms for fees that fit small business owners. The firm specializes in litigation, drafting and negotiating binding contracts, protecting intellectual property, such as trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets, incorporation, employment law, drafting employee manuals and insurance advisory. Legal Ally also works with clients to ensure that their online business is protected as well. Smith wants business owners to know, "Some of the seemingly small decisions you make at the very start can have huge repercussions later. We help business owners avoid problems down the line by being proactive in the beginning." Legal Ally specializes in coaching lawyers. "We have coached hundreds of lawyers in our 36 years in practice." says Smith. "Legal Ally can help lawyers build their book of business, have a career plan and become rainmakers." Smith has long been passionate about helping women and LGBT entrepreneurs and small business owners succeed. In addition to his duties as Founding Partner at Legal Ally, he is on the executive committee of Personal PAC, a pro-choice political action committee and is a member of the LGBT chamber of commerce. Prior to founding Legal Ally, Smith practiced law at large firms such as Sidley, McGuire Woods and Bryan Cave. At Santa Clara Law School, he was an Editor of the Law Review.
Silicon Valley Business Journal has named Terri Marcroft ’80 one of its 2017 Women of Influence in Silicon Valley. Through her consulting firm MarketSavvy Inc., she serves local tech companies as their “interim VP of marketing,” developing positioning, messaging, go-to-market strategy, and execution.
Company contact info: www.Market-Savvy.com, 408-656-1876, firstname.lastname@example.org
Following her tenure as director of production finance at Arnold Shapiro Productions, Dorothy Duder ’80 has joined MAK Pictures in Sherman Oaks, California, as director of production finance. She resides in North Hollywood with her Academy Award–winning husband, artist Doug Drexler. Both have been active in television production for more than 25 years.
Rolanda Pierre Dixon J.D. ’80 served as keynote speaker at Mission College’s African American Celebration Luncheon, which recognizes achievements made by African Americans.
Pierre Dixon was the first African American assistant district attorney in the history of the District Attorney's Office in Santa Clara County. In 1991, she established the first domestic violence unit in Santa Clara County, among many other accomplishments, retiring in 2011 after 30 years of service.
With humor and insight, Pierre Dixon led attendees through her musings on current events, early motivations for becoming a lawyer, and reasoning behind advocating for the domestic violence unit.
“Every child deserves to be raised in a home of peace—can't promise them all a million dollars, can't give them all a scholarship—but we can certainly keep them in a home where they're not being abused, where their mothers are not being abused,” she said. “And for me, that was what I wanted to speak to.”
Pierre Dixon's journey to becoming a lawyer was at times fraught with challenge. While attending Lowell High in San Francisco, her guidance counselor told her she could never become a lawyer because it was “too difficult.” It took her mother calling the school before Pierre Dixon was put back on the right track to support her career interests.
“I was lucky,” she said. Even though Pierre Dixon grew up in a single-parent household, her mother always made it clear “my girls are going to do what they need to do to be successful.”
Positive self-talk and years of hard work ultimately paid off for Pierre Dixon, who was over the moon when she learned she passed the bar exam.
“I cried from the depth of my toes to the top of my head,” she recalled. “In that moment, in that phone call, I had been told that my dreams had been fulfilled. I was an attorney and licensed to practice law in the State of California. I was 24-years-old.”
Thomas S. Templeman '81 has joined Graybug Vision as Chief Operating Officer. The company is a venture-stage pharmaceutical company committed to developing potentially transformative therapies for ocular diseases including wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and glaucoma. A seasoned pharmaceutical executive with more than 25 years of cross-functional experience, Dr. Templeman joins Graybug Vision from Medivation (acquired by Pfizer in late 2016), where he was Senior Vice President Pharmaceutical Operations and Quality. In that role, he was responsible for early and late-stage pharmaceutical development, operations and quality including early developmental candidates, clinical developmental candidates and marketed products. As a member of the Medivation Executive Committee, Dr. Templeman was responsible for developing and implementing company vision and strategy.
Thomas S. Templeman, PhD, said, "There is a dramatic increase in eye diseases due to our aging population, and an increased need for new and more effective treatments. Graybug Vision's novel delivery technology, to create injectable, long-acting products to deliver single or multiple drugs for up to one year in the eye, significantly reduces the treatment burden on patients and physicians. I am excited to join the management team with our efforts to deliver innovative care to patients."
Dr. Templeman began his career as a research and development scientist and over the past two decades has held management positions at, among others: Ortho Diagnostic Products and Centocor Biologics; Liquidia Technologies, where he was Senior Vice President, Integrated Supply Chain; and at Hospira, where he was Vice President, Manufacturing, Science & Technology.
Edythe DeMarco ’81, a wealth management advisor for Merrill Lynch, has been named one of America’s top 100 women financial advisors by Barron’s for 2017. The Barron’s ranking reflects assets under management, annual revenues, and the quality of the advisor’s practice. DeMarco, a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, has been working at Merrill Lynch in Providence, Rhode Island, for 35 years, helping clients successfully manage wealth and achieve their financial goals.
In June, Peter Coe Verbica '82, J.D. '99 published Left at the Gate and Other Poems. Peter continues to work in the Wealth Management Group of an investment bank, providing credit facilities as well as portfolio advisory services. He serves as President of the South Peninsula Area Republican Coalition, and Vice President of the Pine Ridge Association at Henry W. Coe State Park. He has taught Principles of Investments in the Econ Department of SJSU this past year. He is also helping with the 1982 Year Reunion Committee for Santa Clara University. Peter ran in 14 trail races last year for the fun of it, including the Death Valley Half with his competitive athlete wife, Tiffany, who typically placed 1st or 2nd in every race.
Peter Coe Verbica ’82, J.D. ’99 has been promoted to assistant vice president and senior financial advisor for a wealth management group at a major investment bank. In March, he published three books: The Missing Tales of Sherlock Holmes, Eighty-Eight Lost Haikus (under a different pen name), and Speak Easy and Other Poems. His Sherlock Holmes short stories were praised by novelist Elizabeth McKenzie as "clever and addictive and supremely well done."
Sean Nalty '82, J.D. '85 is a member of Ogletree Deakins' Life, Health, Disability, ERISA and Employee Benefits practice. For more than 30 years, Sean has specialized in ERISA litigation and California litigation involving life, health, and disability insurance. In 2014, Sean was awarded a Client Choice award by International Law Office (ILO). He was the exclusive winner of the Healthcare/Life Sciences category in California. Sean also volunteers with Catholic Charities of the East Bay, St. Vincent De Paul, various East Bay homeless shelters, and Ministries to the Sick.
Mary Alexander J.D. '82 is a San Francisco–based personal injury attorney, who is representing the parents of Griffin Madden and Michela Gregory, two victims in the tragic Ghost Ship fire in Oakland in December. Over the past 30 years, Mary Alexander has earned a national reputation for her work protecting consumer rights, winning the respect of clients and colleagues alike. A past president of both the Association of Trial Lawyers of America and the Consumer Attorneys of California, Mary’s career – both in and out of the courtroom – has focused on one thing: ensuring that those who have been harmed by the negligent, preventable actions of others get their day in court – and get the answers, and justice, they deserve. A scientist before she studied law, Mary leverages her technical background in every matter she takes on, and is well known for her ability to explain complicated theories to juries – and for using high-tech courtroom exhibits that help make difficult points easy to comprehend. She’s taken on cases other lawyers won’t, or can’t – such as child sex abuse cases – and assisted clients from all walks of life. She has been named one of the San Francisco Bay Area’s “Top 10 Trial Attorneys” by the San Francisco Chronicle.
Christine Russell ’71, MBA ’83 has been appointed to the board of directors of eGain, a leading provider of cloud customer engagement solutions. Russell is CFO of UniPixel and a director and audit committee chair of QuickLogic Corporation. Prior to joining UniPixel in 2015, she served as CFO for a number of technology companies, including Vendavo, a leading provider of SaaS pricing optimization software; EAG; Virage Logic; and OuterBay Technologies. Russell serves on the board and is a former chair of Silicon Valley Directors Exchange (SVDX). She has also served as president of Financial Executives International (Silicon Valley Chapter) and is an emeritus member of the Leavey School of Business advisory board.
Wayne Repich ’83 has received associate design-build professional certification from the Design-Build Institute of America. He is the director of client services at the New York City office of Dewberry, a leading market-facing firm that provides professional services to a wide variety of public- and private-sector clients. Repich has more than 34 years of experience in real estate, finance, and development and is responsible for various projects across several service lines at Dewberry. He is a member of Design-Build Institute of America; the New York Building Congress, where he serves on the government affairs committee; the Performance Based Building Coalition, where he serves on the legislative committee; the Society for College and University Planning; the American Institute of Architects–New York; Professional Women in Construction; the Metropolitan Railway Club of New York; the Building Owners and Managers of New York; and the California Association of Mortgage Professionals.
Jesper Rasmussen J.D. ’84 is a trial attorney who has practiced law in California for more than 30 years. While Rasmussen has in-depth knowledge and experience in many areas of the law, he now specializes in employment discrimination, harassment, retaliation and wrongful termination, public entity defense, civil rights, business litigation, and anti-SLAPP litigation.
Rasmussen has successfully tried cases to verdict in both state and federal courts, including a three-week jury trial for FEHA retaliation, where his client was awarded $110,000 in costs, and a two-week jury trial in U.S. District Court for alleged violations of the ADA and rights of privacy. He has never lost a case he has taken to trial, and he’s appeared and argued before the California Supreme Court as well as worked on an appeal that resulted in a precedent-setting Internet libel opinion by the California Supreme Court. Rasmussen has a strong track record of resolving cases in their early stages, having won more than 40 motions for summary judgment. He also has extensive experience in writs and appeals.
Kevin Dowling '84 started a new job in January 2017 as a Major Gift Officer for Habitat for Humanity East Bay/Silicon Valley
California State Senator Bob Wieckowski J.D. '85 has been selected to lead CSG West’s Energy and Environment Policy Committee. Wieckowski becomes the first California legislator to lead this important body. The work of CSG West policy committees reflects the substantive issues facing Western legislatures. CSG West policy committees offer opportunities for legislators to learn from policy experts and their peers from across the region. Policy committees can also recommend resolutions and policy positions for consideration by the CSG West Executive Committee. Policy committee chairs play an important leadership role in convening committee members and identifying committee priorities. Committee chairs provide direction to CSG West staff in the planning and coordination of the policy committee's agenda during the biennium, lead committee meetings, and ensure committee business is carried out. “This is a fantastic opportunity to share California’s progress on important issues with my colleagues from throughout the western United States and advance the information sharing and cooperation of the Energy and Environment Committee,” stated Senator Wieckowski. “As a delegate to the Paris Climate Change Conference, I am eager to continue efforts on climate adaptation as Chair of this committee. CSG West serves as a terrific forum to learn what other states are doing and share best practices as we grow our economy while combating climate change in the West.”
Senator Wieckowski represents District 10 in the California Senate, which encompasses portions of Alameda and Santa Clara counties. He has served two terms in the State Assembly and is in his first full term in the Senate. He currently chairs the Senate Committee on Environmental Quality, as well as Budget Subcommittee 2 on Resources, Environmental Protection, Energy and Transportation.
Phil Rehkemper ’85, MBA ’89 was recently named VP and CFO of Freeman, a leading global provider of brand experiences and integrated services for experiential marketing. He will be responsible for the company’s accounting, tax, financial planning and analysis, real estate, and treasury teams.
Fred Hamel ’85 has published Choice and Agency in the Writing Workshop: Developing Engaged Writers, Grades 4–6, through Teachers College Press. The book explains what happened when he and a fourth-grade teacher decided to create a weekly writing workshop that allowed students greater autonomy than is typical in schools. The book is “an observational, reflective study about paying attention to the range of things kids do to make acts of writing accessible and meaningful.” Hamel is a professor in the School of Education at University of Puget Sound.
The book is available at https://www.tcpress.com/choice-and-agency-in-the-writing-workshop-9780807758557
Joe Allanson ’85 is thrilled to have joined the board of trustees at the University of San Francisco. While a Santa Clara Bronco at heart (Once a Bronco, Always a Bronco), USF is a place where his contributions have the potential to make a greater impact. Allanson continues to serve as a trustee at St. Ignatius College Preparatory and will be hitting his six-year term limit in June 2018. He is also the chief accounting officer and controller for Salesforce.com in San Francisco, where he recently celebrated his 14th anniversary at the company.
Laura (Thompson) Donohue ’86 has a tax practice, Donohue & Associates, and works as a certified clinical hypnotherapist. She and her boyfriend, Jason, live in Grass Valley, California. Her son, Matthew, attends San Jose State, her daughter, Sarah, attends Sacramento State, and her daughter, Megan, graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.
Julie Mar-Spinola J.D. '87 received the Alumni Special Achievement Award from tthe Santa Clara University School of Law. She holds a dual business and legal role as Finjan Holdings, Inc.'s Chief Intellectual Property Officer and Vice President of Legal. She is responsible for the Company's revenue-based operations, including IP assets, cyber technology innovations, enforcement programs, licensing best practices, public policy initiatives, and mentorships. In 2016, Ms. Mar-Spinola was appointed to the Board of Directors for subsidiary, Finjan Mobile, Inc. Ms. Mar-Spinola has dedicated her entire professional career in representing high technology companies of all sizes and business models on all things IP, including IP portfolio development, M&A's, acquisitions, divestitures, enforcement (licensing and litigation), as well as preservation and monetization of proprietary technologies and patents.
Julie is Chairman Emeritus and co-founder of ChIPs (www.chipsnetwork.org), a non-profit dedicated to advancing women at the confluence of law, technology, and regulatory policy. She serves as a court appointed mediator specializing in patent and other complex disputes, since 2011, and is a member of the High Tech Advisory Board at Santa Clara University, School of Law, since 2014. Ms. Mar-Spinola has been a member of the Patent Public Advisory Board (PPAC) since 2015. Julie has also been recognized for her contributions in the fields of technology and law, including most recently by the Silicon Valley Business Journal and the Recorder.
Leslie R. Lopez J.D. '87 is the deputy director and chief counsel at the California Department of General Services.
Ms. Lopez has served as deputy secretary and general counsel at the Business, Consumer Services and Housing Agency since 2013. She served as general counsel at the State and Consumer Services Agency from 2007 to 2013 and as a deputy attorney general in the Government Law Section at the California Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General from 1994 to 2007. She was a deputy city attorney in the Sacramento City Attorney’s Office from 1990 to 1994 and in private practice from 1987 to 1990.
Christopher Der Manuelian J.D./MBA ’87 is a personal injury attorney with offices in Jackson, Modesto, and Stockton, California. He worked as an insurance defense attorney in the Bay Area for the first 10 years of his career.
Steve Clinton '87, J.D. '97 is with the law firm Womble Carlyle. He mentors law student participants in the Entrepreneurs Law Clinic, as well as participates in the "Bronco Network" which connects mentors to Santa Clara student athletes to provide guidance, information, and career counseling. He writes, "It's very rewarding to be able to connect with students and provide perspective and hopefully some helpful suggestions about the path ahead." As the dad of a child with special needs, he's proud to be a board member of Hope Services – the leading provider of services to people with developmental disabilities in the region.