Pam (Morelli) Nelson '78, '83, '90 carried the Olympic torch through Tacoma and lit the city's cauldron in the 1996 Olympic Torch Relay this summer. The last leg of the torch's journey through Tacoma brought Pam through the city's "Diversity Mile," which was lined with children in cultural costumes.
Pam earned the honor for her work in public education and counseling ministry. She is currently a teacher and school counselor for the Federal Way School District, as well as a private counseling practitioner.
Pam and her husband Mike Nelson '75 were foster parents for seven years. Mike is a Tacoma dentist and former clinical instructor at the University of Washington Dental School. They're now enjoying a much needed rest in their new home in Sumner, Wash.
The hairs on the back of Principal Terry Beckstead's neck rose with excitement the first time he dropped in on Karen Fulmer's music class.
"I knew I was seeing excellence in action," said Beckstead, who leads Sumner Junior High School. "I got that kind of chill." Beckstead and others who know Fulmer describe her as the consummate teacher, an inspiration to her peers.
In October, state Superintendent of Public Instruction Judith Billings '61 named Fulmer Washington's 1997 Teacher of the Year. It is the third time in four years a PLU graduate has earned the state's highest teaching honor. Carol Coe '85 was the state's top teacher in 1994, and Kathy McFarland '80 earned the honor in 1995.
Fulmer, 42, has taught in Sumner schools for 20 years, mostly at Sumner Junior High. She earned both her bachelor's and master's degrees from PLU in 1976 and 1980 respectively.
By winning the state award, Fulmer is eligible to compete for national teacher of the year. That award is announced in the spring. Fulmer said she felt honored to represent other teachers in this the "noblest of professions." This story was excerpted from an Oct. 17, 1996, article in The (Tacoma) News Tribune.
Karen Fulmer '76, '80, a music teacher at Sumner Junior High School, earned the 1997 Washington State Teacher of the Year award.
This story was excerpted from an Oct. 17, 1996, article in The (Tacoma) News Tribune.
Homecoming 1996 was a success with more than 600 alumni on campus for
the weekend. Darren Kerbs '96, acting assistant director for alumni and
parent relations at PLU, said the class reunions and Gala Buffet and
Concert were a hit, with a mix of alumni attending from a wide range of
LEFT: Marv Harshman '42, recently retired Hall of Fame
collegiate basketball coach, signs copies of his book "Harsh" as part of
the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the University
RIGHT: PLU runningback Peter Finstuen (32) runs the
ball from the six-yard line for a 94-yard touchdown in the Homecoming
game vs. Western Oregon. Finstuen also made 71-yard and 80-yard runs in
the 49-30 victory.
LEFT: President Loren Anderson proudly displays the new
official PLU class ring presented to him by Susan Stringer '76. Anderson
exchanged his Concordia class ring for the new PLU ring at a short
ceremony during the alumni awards presen-tation. The PLU ring, chosen
through a campus-wide vote, features a unique rose window
From left, Jean (Christianson) Wolfe '56, Robert Wolfe, and Sylvia (Stavaas) Bjelde '40 pose in their Pacific Lutheran garb in Bergen, Norway.
The tour guides ran them ragged, stuffed them full of history and showed them things the average tourist never sees.
Jean (Christianson) Wolfe '56, her husband, Robert, Sylvia (Stavaas) Bjelde '40, Einar Siqueland '54 and his wife, Jillian, were among 44 people from Lutheran colleges across the country to take part in the Lutheran College Alumni Tour of Scandinavian Countries in July 1996.
The 16-day whirlwind tour started in St. Petersburg, Russia, and wound through Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark. "I had been on several other package tours and this one was really excellent," said Wolfe. "The guides were tremendous, they had planned it well, the hotels were beautiful and the food was scrumptious."
Wolfe said her favorite part was St. Petersburg. "I think in four days we saw it all," she laughed, exhausted at the memory itself. "They had us going day and night but we took it all in - culture, history... everything."
Besides PLU, tour members came from Texas Lutheran College, Gustavus Adolphus College, Muhlenberg College and Carthage College. The cruise was coordinated by Vantage Travel.
PLU's Office of Alumni and Parent Relations is helping sponsor another Scandinavian tour in June 1997. For more information, call Vantage Travel, 1-800-322-6677, or PLU's Alumni and Parent Relations Office, 1-800-ALUM-PLU.
Of the 49 staff members at Kalles, 22 are PLU graduates. Of those 22, one is the principal, four are student teachers and the rest are faculty teaching everything from music and science to English and P.E.
"Folks are a little bit surprised we have so many Lutes here," said Bustad, who has been at Kalles for eight years. "PLU puts out a good product. Though I might be a little biased," he said with a laugh. "No, seriously, our philosophy is we want to get the best educator available and fortunately for PLU alums it's a lot of them."
Cindy Watters '93 agrees. "There are a lot of Lutes here and they're great people to work with," said Watters, who is completing her third year teaching social studies and student leadership at Kalles. "There are great teachers coming out of PLU and you want to hire the best."
The Kalles Lutes donned PLU sweatshirts for a picture at the beginning of the year.
MIDDLE ROW: Leslie Tauzer '97, Cathy Davison '79, Cathy Warr '73, Stacey Jeffers '89, Leslie Snyder-Anderson '89, Tim Templin '86, '96, Guy Kovacs '90, Brian Bontemps '90.
FRONT ROW: Russ Andersen '72, John Bustad '69, '75, Jeff Miller '93, Greg DeJardin '96.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
Jerry Bayne '58 shows off the seven-and-a-half-foot altar cloth he made in the Hardanger counted-thread embroidery style. The cloth, and his other prize-winning embroidered items, were on display this fall at Gloria's Scandinavian Gifts just north of PLU on Park Avenue.
Ninety-nine percent of Jerry Bayne's classmates probably remember him as a trumpet player. Plain and simple.
These days the retired music teacher - and yes, a well-known trumpet and saxophone player - is being singled out for his intricate drawn lace Hardanger embroidery. Hardanger is a counted-thread embroidery that comes from the Hardanger region of southwestern Norway.
In September, Bayne '58 walked away a Grand Champion from the Western Washington Fair in Puyallup for his work on a tablecloth that was so refined, so demanding and so beautiful that it "knocked the judges eyes out," said Carolee Berntsen '71, home arts supervisor for the fair.
Bayne's embroidery, which includes a pillow and a seven-and-a-half-foot altar cloth he made for his church, Glendale Lutheran, was featured on KIRO Television, in The (Tacoma) News Tribune and in The Highline Times, a weekly paper in Bayne's hometown of SeaTac, Wash.
Bayne grew up before television and has always worked with his hands. "My mother taught me to use my hands when I was very young," he said. "I embroidered my first dish towel when I was 9." He's also quite handy with wood, having built his own home inside and out.
Bayne took up Hardanger a couple of years ago, but the embroidery tradition has been in his family for generations. His grandmother came from Norway and both she and his mother worked at the patience-demanding needlework.
"The most inspirational thing from my mother and grandmother was that it's good to be useful, to make things. It's good to be good with your hands. It's honest work," he said.
Information from a Sept. 12, 1996, article in The (Tacoma) News Tribune was used in this story.
But team members really had to stretch their necks when Byrd got them in to meet the Boston Celtics this fall.
Byrd, a former standout basketball player at PLU, arranged for the Ingalls boys and girls basketball teams - both Class A Champions in 1992 - to attend a normally closed-to-the-public practice session the Celtics held at nearby Brandeis University. (It also didn't hurt that Byrd is friends with the president of Brandeis!)
As the legendary Robert Parish (all 7-foot-1-inch of him), Joe Kleine, Xavier McDaniel, Dee Brown, Kevin Gamble, Kevin McHale, Reggie Lewis, rookie Marcus Webb and others took the court, the kids could barely contain their excitement. They stared in awe, flashed pictures and whispered in reverent tones.
When practice was over, the Celtics patiently posed for pictures and signed hundreds of autographs. The local media covered the event and featured the Lynn students in the next day's newspaper.
Byrd said it was great to see the expressions on his students' faces when meeting the celebrated pro-basketball players.
A cement slab and a few walls marked the site of the University Center in early stages of construction in 1969. Student Activities Director Marv Swenson (left) visited the site one day and found a work crew filling a cavernous empty space in the basement with dirt. They told him the filler was to provide support for a floor in the soon-to-be bookstore. Swenson stopped the crew, gathered an extra $2,000 to put in structural supports instead of the dirt, and preserved the space. It was first used for storage, then music practice rooms, and was affectionately called the "gravel pit" because of its unfinished floor. Today, the site is the home of the Scandinavian Cultural Center.
Send your memories to Pacific Lutheran Scene, PLU, Tacoma, Wash. 98447-0003, or call 206-535-7430, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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