Class of 1981 Winter 2022 Class Note

This column should be published in the midst of the winter sports season and we Black Bear faithful are hoping for successful seasons on the ice and on the basketball court with a few new coaches on the benches. With that, let’s jump right into some sports news! The Class of ’81 was well represented at the 2022 UMaine Sports Hall of Fame induction held on October 21st. Hockey player and now coach, John Tortorella, and swimmer, Beth Carone Prelgovisk, were both inducted, along with four other individuals and two teams. 

John was hired last June to coach the Philadelphia Flyers. He previously coached the New York Rangers, Vancouver Canucks, Columbus Blue Jackets, and the Tampa Bay Lightning. Twelve of his 19 teams have made Stanley Cup Playoff appearances, including the 2004 Tampa Bay team whom he coached to their first championship. The fiery coach was a winger at UMaine and earned a reputation as one of the team’s most hard-nosed players, after joining the program in its second year of existence, 1978-79. He had transferred from Salem State in Massachusetts. John racked up 39 goals and 71 assists for 110 points in 99 career games before going on to a long minor league playing and coaching career, which eventually earned him a position in the NHL.

Beth led the Black Bear swim team to three New England championships and a second place finish our senior year. She won four NE individual championships in the 50-yard backstroke, 100-yard individual medley, 200 individual medley, and 50-yard breaststroke. She also swam a leg for the triumphant 400-yard medley relay, 800 medley relay, and 200 medley relay teams. Her 400 medley relay teams won two NE titles. By graduation time, she was part of three school record medley relay teams.

We send our sincere congratulations to both of these outstanding athletes and we’re sure proud to call them our classmates!

Jeff Denman is a retired American history and geography teacher from the Brookline public schools in Brookline, MA. He is married and the dad of nine children and 20 grandchildren! His retirement job is writing! His second book should be out by the time you’re reading this column, John Quincy Adams: His Struggle with Slavery in Antebellum America. The narrative centers around the thread of slavery and abolition and reveals how one of America’s underrated statesmen viewed and challenged the “peculiar institution” through the decades-long remarkable, and often controversial life. You can follow Jeff’s writings on Instagram @jeffreyadenman and on Twitter @Jeff Denman3, as well as on his website,

For this column, I found myself at a loss for any more news than those first few paragraphs that you just read. Once again, I tried a Facebook experiment and, to my surprise, it worked! I applied the KISS principle…3 questions. 1) Are your retired? 2) If not, who’s your employer and what’s your job title? 3) Where do you currently live? Here are updates from the 21 classmates who responded —

Kathy Littlefield Reynolds is system director of governance operations for Northern Light Health. She just relocated from Hampden to Harpswell, and is a grandmother times two, with two more on the way! She enjoys skiing, hiking, and traveling as much as possible. Mary Archer Stuart has been technology director for the City of Brewer for 36 years —but retirement is just around the corner, she says! Anne Hall, whom we reported on in the last issue, is retired and living in Blue Hill. She is currently chair of the board of advisors of UMaine’s School of Policy and International Affairs. Barry Wight is customer success manager with Analyst1. He lives in Gorham and expects to be a granddad by the time you read this! 

Kathy Trenholm and husband, Rudy Shorette, are both retired and enjoying life in their new log home on Chemo Pond in Bradley. They report that their son, Daniel Shorette ’16, is getting his master’s at UMaine and was married to Abigail in 2021. Debbie Tarr is retired from HP and lives in Sutton, NH. She is now a yoga/meditation teacher at Colby Sawyer College and Mount Sunapee “just for fun,” she says. Gary Gonyar ’02G is retired and loving it! He lives in Charlottesville, VA, has four grandkids, and is a parttime sales guide at LL Bean and trail maintainer/GPS ranger in Shenandoah National Park. He’s also hiking the Appalachian Trail in sections. Don ’92G and Claudette Powers Simms say they’re “thinking about retirement!” Don teaches physical education at Yarmouth High School and Claudette is the book seller and gift side manager at Sherman’s Bookstore in Freeport. They live in Gray, are grandparents to three (4 in 2023), dog parents (x2) and enjoy golfing.

Mike Roughton is executive director of the Manufacturer’s Association of Maine and lives in Standish. Michelle Amato is semi-retired and works for families as a special education advocate. She splits her time between Boxford, MA, and Arundel. Gay Bolduc Mafera is operations manager at Flagship Harbor Advisors. Her husband retired this past year and they relocated from Marshfield, MA, to Wells. Dina Dudarevitch is a senior quality improvement specialist with Seacoast Mental Health Center in Portsmouth, NH, and works part time at JoAnn Fabric & Craft. She lives in Kittery. Kim Powell Ladue is director of sales at Woodland Terrace, a senior living community, and lives in Raleigh, NC. Harrison “Cal” Buxton is an SVP Senior Portfolio Manager for UBS Private Wealth and lives in Stonington, CT. Deb Kupa is an attorney in private practice, Kupa Law Associates, with her brother, Jim. She lives in North Kingstown, RI, but gets to the family camp as often as possible in Rockwood, ME, on Moosehead Lake —her “piece of heaven!” Gail Clough Rice is retired from Central Maine Power (2018). She spends summers in Freeport and sailing the Maine coast on their sailboat, Imagine, and winters in Carrabassett Valley skiing at Sugarloaf. Bob Auriemma is the head of custom compliance supply chain at Maersk Line. He lives in Brick, NJ, has one grandson, plays hockey regularly, and completed the Atlantic City half marathon last year! Jean Bingham lives in South Portland and works for the USDA as a grants officer for child nutrition programs, primarily farm to school. Kerry Flathers lives in Lancaster, MA, and is director of development and communications for a community development center.

Of course, if you’re on Facebook, you may have already read all this news. If you’re not following our Facebook page — perhaps you should consider it?! And, if you follow my page on Facebook, you may know that my husband, Bill Dalton ’80, retired in October after 41 years as the catering director at UMaine. A bit of an adjustment for both of us, but I’m enjoying the extra help around the house as my marketing agency continues to grow! I’ll have to come up with another creative set of questions to pry some news out of more of you for the next column — stay tuned! Until then, health and happy times to you all. GO BLUE!