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Remembering The Crossing on the anniversary of its demolition

Posted on Apr 19, 2019 in Campus News

Hawks Crossing

This weekend marks the anniversary of an event that many Jayhawks would rather forget. The Crossing, a campus icon, was demolished in 2008 to make way for the Oread Hotel.

The building opened in 1923 as Rock Chalk Café. It served as a lunch haven for students and catered to soldiers during World War II. Through the years, it became a go-to spot for students to spend an afternoon relaxing on the porch or playing darts inside. And if a student was hungry, Yello Sub and the Glass Onion were right next door.

Andrea Graham and her college boyfriend, Brandon, were big fans of the bar during their time at KU in the early 2000s. “My boyfriend at the time, now my husband, threw me a surprise 22nd birthday party at the Crossing,” says Andrea, j’02. “We loved that place!”

After a new owner took over in 2006, the bar stayed open until the teardown date arrived. The nine-story hotel complex opened in 2010.

In total, the bar was open for 85 years at 12th Street and Oread Avenue. The bar’s name fluctuated as owners changed in the 70s and 80s. Monikers for the dive bar included New Haven, Catfish Bar ‘N Grill, and Rock Chalk Bar. It became known only as The Crossing in 1988.

If you want to take a real trip down memory lane, check out the aptly-named “I drank at the Crossing in Lawrence Kansas in the 80s” Facebook group.

Do you have some memories or stories from hanging out at the Crossing that you’d like to share? Send them our way at

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Jayhawks in the News | Apr. 19

Posted on Apr 19, 2019 in Alumni News

Jayhawks in the News

Find out what University of Kansas alumni are up to in our weekly edition of “Jayhawks in the News.” It’s like an online version of Class Notes. If you’ve seen Jayhawks in the news who should be featured, email us at


New KCK Municipal Court judge named | Wyandotte Daily

Meaghan Shultz, l’04, was named a Kansas City, Kansas, Municipal Court judge at the Thursday, March 7, Unified Government Commission meeting. Shultz, currently in the UG prosecutor’s office, has worked at the UG for 13 years, and prior to that, worked at a private law firm. A majority of the UG Commission voted for Shultz after she and another finalist made presentations at the March 7 meeting.
Read full article.


School of Business Names 2019 Distinguished Alumni Award Recipients | The University of Kansas

The University of Kansas School of Business will honor Tom Bené, b’84, and Frank Friedman, b’79, with its 2019 Distinguished Alumni Award. Bené and Friedman will receive the award for their dedication to business excellence, community service and commitment to KU on Thursday, April 18, during a private reception at The Jayhawk Club.
Read full article.


Tiger Woods’s victory was no personal redemption story. It didn’t need to be. | The Washington Post

Patricia E. Gaston, j’81, is a journalism professor at the University of Kansas and a former editor at The Post. I was in the car, scrolling through the radio for news Sunday, when I learned that the fist-pumping Tiger Woods of old had returned, winning his fifth Masters to wild applause from the crowd at Augusta National. I could envision him in his familiar red Nike shirt and black pants heading toward his family. Of course, a couple hours later, I was glued to my television and could see and feel the roar of the crowd, that warm embrace between him and his son, Charlie, the daps and hugs from other golfers in the gallery. My eyes moistened with tears.
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Dr. Leslie Doyle Named Inaugural Chief Inclusion Officer at Rockhurst University | Diverse Education

Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri has appointed Dr. Leslie Doyle, g’00, as the school’s inaugural chief inclusion officer where she will lead the newly established Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. A Kansas City native who grew up across the street from Rockhurst, Doyle has more than two decades of experience working in higher education, most recently serving as the director of service, diversity and social justice at Fontbonne University, where she has worked for the past 13 years. Doyle received a bachelor’s degree from Northwest Missouri State University, a master’s degree in higher education from the University of Kansas, a master’s degree in business and leadership from Fotbonne University and an Ed.D. from Maryville University.
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Dr. Nancy Damron Appointed Vice President for Academic Affairs | Mid-American Nazarene University

President David Spittal announced the appointment of Dr. Nancy L. Damron, PhD ’05, as Vice President of Academic Affairs effective immediately. Dr. Damron has served in this role in an interim capacity since February 1. Prior to that, she was Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences after serving as Dean of the School of Education. “Dr. Damron is an outstanding educator and leader who brings a wealth of expertise and experience to this new role,” Spittal said. “Her commitment to high standards of excellence, quality teaching and learning and innovative programs will support and enhance our university’s strategic goals.”
Read full article.


Have you heard news about a fellow Jayhawk, or maybe you have news of your own to share? Email us at, or fill out our Class Notes form to be included in a future issue of Kansas Alumni magazine. Read more about newsworthy Jayhawks.

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Jayhawk Career Network helps connect Ad Club, NYC Jayhawks

Posted on Apr 18, 2019 in Career/Life

KU Ad Club JCN

When a group of KU students needed help connecting with alumni in New York City, the Jayhawk Career Network was there to help.

The KU Ad Club is a student organization that hosts professionals in advertising and marketing to discuss their career journeys. In April, the group took its biennial trip to New York City, home to one of the largest networks of advertising agencies. With an assist from the Jayhawk Career Network, 11 students were able to meet with KU alumni at multiple agencies in the area.

“It was a lot of work planning the trip,” says Wilcox, a senior in journalism and president of the Ad Club.  “We had some connections from when we visited two years ago, and the Alumni Association helped us find more businesses with alumni. KU grads in New York are outnumbered by east coast schools, so when Jayhawks come by they really want to help you succeed.”

One of the highlights of the trip was a panel discussion at NBC, featuring five employees who got their start at KU. Jamie Cuthburth, b’95, senior vice president of integrated marketing at NBC, organized and moderated the panel.

“Some of the panelists didn’t even know their co-workers went to KU,” Wilcox says. “It was cool seeing them all working at such a prestigious company, and to know they were in our shoes at one point.”

The trip to New York also meant a chance to make a KU Mentoring connection in person. Wilcox had previously connected with Carol Journey Adler, b’09, an enterprise account executive at Apple.

“I spoke with her over the phone earlier in the semester, and she gave me good advice and recommended a couple of sales books to read,” Wilcox says. “We met at a KU alumni happy hour in New York, where I got a chance to meet her in person and continue the conversation.”

If you want to make connections with alumni like Stephanie did, the Jayhawk Career Network provides a central hub to coordinate career connections and networking opportunities for students and alumni at every life stage. Services include KU Mentoring, a job board, informational articles and more. For more information about the Jayhawk Career Network, contact Kristi Laclé, assistant vice president for the Jayhawk Career Network, at

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Jayhawk Career Network: Leveraging KU Mentoring as alumni

Posted on Apr 17, 2019 in Alumni News

KU Mentoring is just a platform to help students get jobs, right? Wrong.

Not only do students have access to an expansive network of alumni, alumni also have access to each other. Joel Balzer, c’09, took advantage of this opportunity to harness the power of the Jayhawk network.

Balzer is a development officer for major gifts at KU Endowment and works primarily with the School of Engineering, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the School of Business.

What exactly does that mean? “It’s really about having a conversation with a person and finding out what they’re passionate about, or what their family is passionate about,” Balzer says. “And if it happens to be in the realm of supporting KU philanthropically, then I facilitate that.”

Balzer says KU Mentoring was instrumental in helping him secure his new role. “Obviously I had my own initiative to want to work for KU Endowment, but I wouldn’t have been able to get there without the help of other Jayhawks,” he says.

Balzer has attended several networking events throughout his career, but it was often difficult to identify who else in the room was a Jayhawk. With KU Mentoring, Balzer didn’t have to guess, nor did he struggle to make a connection.

“I’ve never encountered a group that was so willing to help someone that they really didn’t know,” he says. “And to use a platform like KU Mentoring, that just opened up the sector for me even wider because it was an easier way to connect with people.”

There’s never a bad time to start making connections. Whether it’s today, tomorrow, or years from now, Jayhawks help Jayhawks. Balzer believes these connections help get you where you want to go, but explains there’s more to it.

“Continue to reach out to people because the connections that you make are so imperative towards your future career, or your current career,” he says. “I truly believe that it’s the people that you know are going to get you in to the places that you want to get, and everything that makes up yourself is going to be the reason why they keep you.”

Whether you’re looking to move jobs, change careers, gain industry insights, or simply ask for advice, it’s all at your fingertips with KU Mentoring.

—Brianna Mears

Are you in a position to give your time? Sign up for KU Mentoring! The Jayhawk Career Network provides a central hub to coordinate career connections and networking opportunities for students and alumni at every life stage. Services include KU Mentoring, a job board, informational articles and more. For more information about the Jayhawk Career Network, contact Kristi Laclé, assistant vice president for the Jayhawk Career Network, at

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Chris Longino named Wintermote recipient

Posted on Apr 15, 2019 in Alumni News

Chris Longino

In thanks for his time and service to the University and his Jayhawk network, the KU Alumni Association is proud to present Chris Longino the Dick Wintermote Volunteer of the Year award. The award will be presented to Longino, b’06, at an alumni event in Tampa Apr. 18.

After a childhood on the move as a military kid, Longino attended Free State High School in Lawrence and later received his bachelor’s degree from the KU School of Business. His career took him to Chicago before a move to Tampa in 2010.

Longino has lead the Tampa-St. Petersburg network since 2016 and has helped organize activities such as a holiday toy drive, a food drive after Hurricane Irma and fundraising efforts for a local elementary school after a fire.

Longino currently serves as a senior field information analyst at the National Insurance Crime Bureau, where he has worked since 2007. He and his wife, Kelley, are expecting their first child.

About the Award

This annual award recognizes network volunteers who demonstrate extraordinary leadership to their network and the KU Alumni Association during a one-year period (July 1-June 30). An internal staff committee within the KU Alumni Association consisting of those who work closest with volunteers meets each year to decide on award winners.

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Memorial Stadium memories: A conversation with Howard Graham

Posted on Apr 12, 2019 in Campus News

Memorial Stadium Football

As David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium approaches its 100th year, one researcher has set out to find untold stories of the historic building.

Howard Graham, g’09, spends his days in the Office of First Year Experience as associate director of academic programs. He’s also a doctoral student in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.

Graham’s dissertation has him deep diving into the history of David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. More than just memories from football games, Graham is looking for the experiences students, alumni, and fans have all shared in the building.

“I want to make sure we have living memories,” said Graham. “I want living stories for future researchers, for students, faculty and staff to be able to go into the archives and read your stories, and to best understand how Memorial Stadium has been a part of this community.”

Conversation with Howard Graham

David Johnston, vice president for strategic communications and digital media at the KU Alumni Association, sat down with Howard Graham to discuss the history of the nearly 100-year-old center of campus.

Part one includes discussions on the commonality of Memorial Stadium experiences, and Johnston, j’94, g’06, shared his own Memorial Stadium memories from attending the Kansas Relays as a boy, which led to him competing for the KU track and field team.

(If listening on a mobile device, click “Listen in browser.” If you already have the SoundCloud app installed, or want to install it, click “Play on SoundCloud.” 

Part two’s topics include the first walk down the Hill for Commencement, the annual Traditions Night to welcome freshmen, and how the game of football has changed from its violent beginnings.

Alumni are invited to share their memories of Memorial Stadium, whether they include football games, track meets, traditions night, commencement, or any kind of gathering in the historic stadium set at the foot of the Hill.

If you have a Memorial Stadium experience you’d like to share, email your stories to Howard at

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Jayhawks in the News | Apr. 12

Posted on Apr 12, 2019 in Alumni News

Jayhawks in the News

Find out what University of Kansas alumni are up to in our weekly edition of “Jayhawks in the News.” It’s like an online version of Class Notes. If you’ve seen Jayhawks in the news who should be featured, email us at


Special Education Department Announces 2019 Dole Humanitarian Award Winner | The University of Kansas

Shelly London, j’74 g’81, the innovative leader behind, was selected to receive the 2019 Dole Humanitarian Award, presented by the Department of Special Education at the University of Kansas. The Dole Humanitarian Award recognizes individuals with connections to the state of Kansas whose efforts have enhanced the quality of life for individuals with disabilities and their families.
Read full article.


Bob Dole gets honorary promotion to colonel | ABC News

Retired Army Capt. Bob Dole, ’45, has been promoted to colonel. President Donald Trump signed into law Monday a bill authorizing Dole’s honorary appointment to the position. The former senator, now 95 years old, registered for the Army Enlisted Reserve Corps in 1942, when he was a student at the University of Kansas. The following year, he was called to active duty. Dole was severely wounded while deployed to Italy as an infantry lieutenant in the 10th Mountain Division, and went on to receive two Purple Hearts and two awards of the Bronze Star Medal with Valor for his service.
Read full article.


Marilynn Smith, an L.P.G.A. Founder and Tour Champion, Is Dead at 89 | The New York Times

Marilynn Smith, ’51, who help found the Ladies Professional Golf Association in 1950, when the women’s game was barely a blip on the national sports scene, and went on to win 21 tour events, including two major championships, died on Tuesday in Goodyear, Ariz. She was 89. Her death, which was announced by the L.P.G.A. on its website, left Marlene Bauer Hagge and Shirley Spork as the last survivors among the 13 pioneers of the women’s tour.
Read full article.


Firm Welcomes Stacey Janssen | Sandberg Phoenix & Von Gontard P.C.

Sandberg Phoenix welcomes Counsel Stacey Janssen, c’85 l’88, who brings more than 25 years of experience to the firm and its clients. As a member of the firm’s business practice group, Stacey will focus on elder law. A graduate of the University of Kansas School of Law, Stacey is a member of the Missouri and Kansas Bars
Read full article.


KU Announces Women’s Hall of Fame Inductees for Program’s 50th Anniversary | The University of Kansas

Since 1970, the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity has honored a select group of women to be inducted into the University of Kansas Women’s Hall of Fame. For the 50th anniversary of this prestigious honor, the ETC will celebrate KU’s rich legacy of phenomenal women who have defied limiting stereotypes and barriers to pave the way for those who follow in their footsteps. Recipients include Nedra Patton Bonds, c’70, Stephanie Blackwood, j’74 g’83, Cynthia Hardin Milligan, c’67, and posthumously Dr. Esther Winkelman Overstreet, m’35.
Read full article.


Have you heard news about a fellow Jayhawk, or maybe you have news of your own to share? Email us at, or fill out our Class Notes form to be included in a future issue of Kansas Alumni magazine. Read more about newsworthy Jayhawks.

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Jayhawk artist brings Watson Library to life

Posted on Apr 12, 2019 in Campus News

Mike Savage Watson Library

One of KU’s most beloved artists is partnering with the University again.

Mike Savage’s latest work is historic Watson Library, which alumni can buy a print or ornaments of as a fundraiser for KU Libraries. The art is available for purchase through Savage’s website and is available through April 20.

Savage, f’80, is a longtime supporter of all things KU, often donating paintings for auction at the Alumni Association’s Rock Chalk Ball.


For more on Mike Savage, read a profile by Chris Lazzarino from Issue 3, 2012, of Kansas Alumni.

Savage colors his world with flair and passion

Now long established as one of Kansas City’s iconic painters, Mike Savage says it was a KU photography class that provided his pivotal insight. As Professor Pok-Chi Lau examined a selection of Savage’s images, he first praised—“I really like what you’re doing”—then added the comment that has since made all the difference: “But get rid of your ego.”

“That was a turning point in my life,” Savage says in his airy, book-lined studio above the garage behind his Westwood home. “He thought I wasn’t delving in far enough. I was trying to make it look good instead of doing what was coming out of me. You’re good at what you do; believe in that. Go find out. Make mistakes.”

Savage, f ’80, has been ridding himself of artistic ego ever since. He describes himself as a contemporary Impressionist, but that’s as far as he’ll go in attaching himself to the slightest scent of a high-minded, difficult artist. (“ARTSY-FARTSY” is a 20-point word in the novelty Scrabble blocks arranged near his desk.)

Savage’s work is accessible both literally and figuratively. His colorful acrylic-on-canvas paintings are prized by collectors and displayed across Kansas City, including his own gallery, Sav-Art, and yet he donates original works for numerous causes (his KU images have become a Rock Chalk Ball tradition) and he accepts commission work, even if the commission ends up being zero and the subjects are beloved pets or the four children of a woman whom a buddy hoped to marry.

“I’m a happy-go-lucky guy about the art,” he says. “I don’t have any angst about it. I like the beauty of painting.”

Savage embraces technology—he has 58,000 songs in iTunes and music is his constant companion while working—and, after photographing his paintings, he generates prints from a high-end digital printer; when galleries call in their orders, he not only makes the prints, but he’ll often deliver them, too.

“It’s kind of magic stuff,” Dave Seal, owner of Framewoods Gallery in downtown Lawrence, says of Savage’s KU prints, “and it’s affordable. Yes, he’s contemporary and Impressionistic, but he makes it a little more modern, and local.”

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INTRUST Bank proud sponsor of Rock Chalk Ball, football tailgates

Posted on Apr 8, 2019 in News

Adams Alumni Center | Intrust Bank to serve as sponsor
INTRUST Bank, a longtime financial services provider in the Midwest, is serving as the title sponsor of the 2019 Rock Chalk Ball, the University of Kansas Alumni Association’s largest annual fundraising event, April 27 at the Kansas City Convention Center. Hosted by the Greater Kansas City Alumni Network, the event raises funds for the Alumni Association’s alumni and student programs, including the Jayhawk Career Network.

INTRUST Bank is also the exclusive banking sponsor for the 2019 “Game Day at the Adams” football tailgates at the Adams Alumni Center. The financial institution, which for decades has partnered with the Alumni Association to provide Jayhawk credit cards to KU alumni, will also support the Association with a Presidents Club contribution.

“The KU Alumni Association has developed a strong relationship with INTRUST Bank through the years, and we’re thrilled to continue our partnership with them,” said Heath Peterson, Association president. “Thanks to their generous support, we will be able to deliver outstanding programs and services for Jayhawks in Lawrence, Kansas City and beyond.”

“INTRUST has a long history of working with the KU Alumni Association and we’re proud to continue that partnership by supporting KU alumni, fans and friends around the world,” said Beth Easter, a KU alumnus and INTRUST Bank commercial relationship manager. “We are excited to expand our partnership to support the great tradition of Rock Chalk Ball in Kansas City and engage alumni during the upcoming football season at ‘Game Day at the Adams.’”


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Hawks Who Brew: KU Alumni in the Beer Industry

Posted on Apr 7, 2019 in Alumni News

Hawks who Brew: alumni working in the beer industry

Something special is brewing. Spring is in the air, downtown streets are bustling with business, and wherever you look people are flocking to fill patios and pints at their favorite breweries.

As if anyone needed more reason to be excited, April 7 is National Beer Day, and all across the country, alumni are applying their KU degrees in the most delicious and refreshingly thirst-quenching ways, working in the beer industry for operations both big and small.

With degrees in Microbiology, Geography and Latin American Studies, Chemistry, Art History, and Atmospheric Science, these alumni are using their diverse talents to create and innovate in their spaces, combining yeast, hops, and water with enthusiasm and a healthy dose of Jayhawk pride.

Meet Geoff Deman, head brewer and director of operations at Free State Brewing Company; Aaron Justus, brewer at Ballast Point; Matt Williams, president and co-founder of Lawrence Beer Company; Victoria Gunderson, brewer at 23rd Street Brewery; and Sean Flynn, associate pilot brewer at MillerCoors. Raise your glass for these alumni as they reflect on their KU memories, careers in beer, camaraderie, and community in the industry. Cheers, and Rock Chalk to our ’Hawks who brew!

Read the story from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.




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