Class Notes 1990-1999

Save the dates for SMU Homecoming 2013: October 24-27. This is a Centennial Reunion year for the classes of 1993 and 1998.


David A. Dreyer (M.F.A. ’92) had a fourth solo exhibition of his paintings and sculpture, “Resonance of Place,” at Valley House Gallery in Dallas from February 16 to March 16. He has been honored with the Moss/Chumley Award from the Meadows Museum at SMU and has had solo exhibitions at The McKinney Avenue Contemporary in Dallas and The Grace Museum in Abilene.
Lee Mulcahy (Ph.D. ’00) is an artist in Aspen, CO. In January 2013 he exhibited at Germany’s Universitat der Kunst Berlin and the Carbondale Council for Arts and Humanities in Carbondale, CO. In March he was featured at Aspen’s Red Brick Center for the Arts.
Nisha Shah returned to the Dedman School of Law at SMU last December as the assistant director of development. She has experience as a trial lawyer and has chaired fundraising efforts and worked closely with lawyers and constituents throughout the Dallas area.


Elise A. Healy, a Dallas-based immigration lawyer, has been named 2013 Dallas Immigration Law “Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers, reflecting the respect she has earned for her ability, professionalism and integrity.


David Gunn and his wife, Kristen Smith Gunn ’94 recently relocated back to Texas after 14 years in Florida. They settled in the Katy area with their children, Preston, Peyton and Pierce. When they are not busy chasing the kids or reconnecting with friends and family, David works as vice president of Business Development and Strategy for SonarMed, a medical device company.
William Jenkins is a civil litigation attorney at Jackson Walker. He was selected as a Fort Worth “Top Attorney” for 2012 by Fort Worth, Texas magazine in last December’s issue.
Matthew Kadane has written The Watchful Clothier: The Life of an Eighteenth-Century Protestant Capitalist (Yale University Press, 2013). He is an associate professor of history at Hobart and William Smith Colleges.
Andrea Iken Tennison and her husband, John Tennison, M.D., welcomed twin sons, James Tyler and Joseph Thomas, Jan. 31, 2011. Andrea reports that their big brother, Jack Truman, has been helping the boys learn to make pony ears!
Lisa K. Thompson has been promoted at Prairie View A&M University from assistant professor of educational leadership to associate professor with tenure and to coordinator of the Ph.D. program in educational leadership in the Whitlowe R. Green College of Education.



Jacqueline Bradley designed and implemented initiatives for fall 2009-fall 2012 that doubled success rates for under-prepared students in the writing program at El Centro College in downtown Dallas. She is chair of the Department of English and Developmental Writing.
Dan Davenport co-founded RiseSmart in 2007, a leader in next-generation outplacement solutions, helping laid-off employees get back to work. With his leadership, 30 Fortune 1,000 companies have switched from traditional outplacement firms to RiseSmart, now the fastest growing outplacement solutions provider in the U.S.
Logan Flatt is senior vice president of strategic planning at the integrated marketing agency Ansira, based in St. Louis and Dallas. As a Chartered Financial Analyst and member of CFA Institute, he is considered an expert on improving the impact of marketing on corporate financial performance. He lives in Dallas.
Phyllis Durbin Grissom has been elected grand president for Delta Delta Delta social Greek organization for the 2012-2014 biennium, announced at the 55th biennial convention in Tucson last July.
Victor G. Hill III married Jennifer Owens in Oklahoma City March 24, 2012. He is a senior network engineer with General Dynamics Information Technology – Air Force and Navy Solutions, and Jennifer is in her 18th year as an English teacher at Putnam City West High School.
Sean Whitley is a producer of “Home Strange Home” on HGTV.
Heather Wilson joined Ogilvy Public Relations as executive vice president and director of the corporate group, based in Chicago. Previously she was a senior vice president with Weber Shandwick and led its West Coast corporate issues and crisis management group in Los Angeles.


John Dorsey reports that he and Andrew Stephan ’93 started their own production company – ten100 – three years ago. Their latest film, “Glory Hounds,” which took three years to make, premiered on “Animal Planet” in February to rave reviews. It documents the bond between military working dogs and their handlers on the front lines in Afghanistan. Last year they directed “The Marinovich Project” for ESPN, which was nominated for an Emmy for best sports documentary. And in 2010 they collaborated with Thaddeus Matula ’03 on “Pony Excess,” also for ESPN.
Jeffrey Hoffman was recently accepted into Theatre Bay Area’s inaugural ATLAS  (Advanced Training Leading Artists to Success) program for directors, which will help him identify his career goals and better understand where he fits into the Bay Area theatrical landscape. He has been cast as Chris Keller in “All My Sons” at the Douglas Morrisson Theatre in Hayward, CA.
Daxton R. (Chip) Stewart is an associate professor at TCU’s Schieffer School of Journalism with a law degree from The University of Texas and a Master of Laws and master’s and doctoral degrees in journalism from the University of Missouri. He combined his background in journalism and law as editor of Social Media and the Law: A Guidebook for Communication Students and Professionals (Routledge, 2012), which details the legal challenges that have arisen with social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube as they relate to journalism, advertising and public relations.
Abby Sassenhagen Williams and her husband, Todd Williams, were honored at the National Philanthropy Day Awards Luncheon in Dallas last November 30. Nominated by Austin College in Sherman, TX, they were named Outstanding Philanthropists by the Greater Dallas Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals for their support of educational opportunities for underserved populations. They chair the regional advisory board for Teach for America in Dallas-Fort Worth and helped establish the Williams Preparatory School in Dallas. Abby serves on the board of the Dallas Women’s Foundation and the Campaign Steering Committee for Campus and Student Life for SMU’s Second Century Campaign.


Tracy Ware Odetunmibi and her husband, Ayorinde Odetunmibi, welcomed their daughter, Atinuke Nia Odetunmibi, August 17, 2012.
HillaryRussoHilary Russo (right) was honored in May with the “Excellence in Teaching” award from the National Society of Leadership and Success. Hilary is an adjunct professor at St. John’s University in New York City and teaches TV performance and production. She is also a TV host/lifestyle and design specialist and a guest host on QVC, the national shopping network.


Melinda Jones has launched her own stationery line, Read Between the Lines, the first of several planned retail extensions from her company and blog, Super Much Love™. She honed her design skills remodeling premier Dallas properties and also had a successful career in advertising and marketing before pursuing her passion for fun paper products.
ColetteKressColette Kress (right), a 24-year veteran of the tech industry, has been named executive vice president and chief financial officer of Nvidia Corp., a graphics chip maker. She previously served as senior vice president and CFO for Cisco’s Business Technology and Operations Finance organization for three years. Prior to that, she spent 13 years with Microsoft, including four years as CFO of its Server and Tools division. In addition, she has held various financial positions with Texas Instruments.
Nefeterius Akeli McPherson (J.D. ’08) was diagnosed with a rare bile duct and liver disease in her first year of law school at SMU. She received a lifesaving liver transplant Nov. 6, 2011, from a 12-year-old West Virginia girl who died suddenly from a brain hemorrhage. Now she has made a vow to keep her donor’s memory alive and spread awareness about the importance of organ donation through a public Facebook page: The Charleston (WV) Gazette ran a front-page story about Nefeterius and her donor last October 9 and a story about her efforts supporting organ donation February 8.
Constantine (Taki) Scurtis has been named a managing partner with LYND, a national real estate investment, development and management firm, which he joined in 2009 as vice president of business development. He will manage a LYND office in Miami, which he recently opened, as well as sourcing new real estate opportunities in South Florida.


Bill Crean (M.S. ’98) has accepted a position as director of product management at InterDigital Communications and has moved to Wayne, PA (in the Philadelphia area) with his wife Stephanie (B.S. ’98) and children Will and Allison.
Shawna Ford Lavender is director of operations for SMU’s women’s basketball. An SMU player from 1993-97, she was head coach at Abilene Christian University for the last nine seasons.
Jason McKenna (Ph.D. ’02) was the speaker at a January 24 lecture at SMU, Emerging R&D in Support of Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief, presented by SMU’s Hunt Institute for Engineering and Humanity. He spoke of how technology is being developed to meet the often neglected needs of people confronted by natural disasters, faced with limited resources, living in everyday poverty. He is lead technical director for geospatial research and engineering at the U.S. Army’s Engineer Research & Development Center, leading a research team that supports the U.S. military’s humanitarian assistance and disaster relief programs in the U.S. and internationally. In 2010 he received the Civilian Service Award, the highest given to civilian Department of Defense employees.
Todd Martin recently joined Culhane Meadows PLLC as a partner in the Dallas office.
Suzanne Campbell Wellen and her husband, Darrell, welcomed a son, John Jay, May 6, 2012. She is a business litigation attorney with Andrews Kurth LLP in Dallas.

Todd Martin, SMU Law class of 1997, recently joined Culhane Meadows PLLC as a partner in the Dallas office.



Alison Ream Griffin has been named to Delta Delta Delta international leadership as a member of the board of directors of this leader among social Greek organizations. Her position was announced at the 55th biennial convention last July in Tucson.
Monique Roy published a new historical fiction novel, Across Great Divides, in July 2013. This is her second book. Her first book for children, Once Upon a Time in Venice, was published in 2007. You can find out more at Books are available from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Jennifer Clark Tobin (J.D. ’01) and her husband, Aaron Tobin ’00, announce the birth of their first child, Anna Christine, in Dallas May 31, 2012.

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