Class of 1991 Spring 2018 Class Note

Lori Schlenker

4116 Trail Road

Lawrence, KS 66049-4134

(785) 312-7384


A number of classmates have been honored with awards or new positions recently.

Following a nationwide recruitment process, Gordon Phair has accepted the position of city engineer in Sioux City, IA. Gordon worked for the city of Palmdale, CA, for the past 12 years and was previously employed by Los Angeles County, CA, for 14 years. He and his wife, Krishna, are the parents of sons Burgin (19) and Wade (16).

Kathy Reddy Montejo, the city clerk of Lewiston, was recently honored with the 2017 President’s Award from the Maine Town and City Clerks’ Association. In 2007, Kathy became a nationally certified “master municipal clerk,” one of only a few such certified clerks in Maine. According to city administrator Ed Barrett, “Kathy has received virtually every award available to clerks in Maine, all of which recognized her outstanding service to our elected officials and citizens.”

Bob Hodgdon won an Outstanding Biology Teacher Award from the National Association of Biology Teachers. In the past, Bob was previously named the Middle Grades Science Teacher of the Year by the Georgia Science Teachers Association and the Outstanding Environmental Educator by SeaWorld and Busch Gardens. He also won the Presidential Innovation Award for Environmental Factors from the EPA and White House Council on Environmental Quality. Bob teaches at Richmond Hill Middle School in Richmond Hill, GA, where he lives with his wife, Stacey, and his two children, Abigail and Conner.

The Maine Business School co-sponsored an event in Portland last summer featuring a Q&A with Melissa Smith, president and CEO of WEX, a global payment processing and information management company. The breakfast event was part of the “Like A Boss” series, where local business leaders offer a behind-the-scenes look at their career paths and the realities of running a company.

Joyce Longcore’s research on a variety of fungus called chytrids has earned her a Golden Goose Award, which was presented to her at the Library of Congress in front of a group of members of Congress and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. This award recognizes scientists whose federally funded research might have seemed silly or unusual on the surface, but ended up have a significant impact. Joyce was able to help veterinarians at the National Zoo to identify the reason their blue poison dart frogs were dying. It was found that the fungus she studies was the cause of decades of unexplained amphibian die-offs around the world. Joyce, who earned her Ph.D. in 1991, is a mycologist and associate research professor at UMaine.

In the last column, we reported that Christine Iaconeta Hepler was inducted into UMaine’s Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2017. In actuality, it was Christine’s sister Catherine Iaconeta ’90 who was inducted. Cathy, a point guard and two-time captain, was an All-Conference player at UMaine. Both sisters played basketball for UMaine. Thank you, Christine, for setting us straight, and we apologize for the error.

Congratulations to all of these alumni on their great accomplishments.  We want to hear about yours, too. Please send your updates!

M-A-I-N-E, Gooo BLUE!