Notre Dame Alumni E-Newsletter
December 2015
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Dear , 

On behalf of the administration, faculty and staff at Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy, and together with the Notre Dame Alumni Association Board of Directors, I wish you a merry and blessed Christmas and a healthy and joyous new year!
By now you should have received, by email, the Alumni Impact Survey. Please be sure to fill it out as soon as possible. I will be using this information to plan future alumni events and to determine how to best serve you.
We hope that in this new year you will connect at an even greater level with the alumni association and continue to be a part of the mission of this great institution. 

Merry Christmas!

Beth Campbell
Director of Alumni Relations 
A (Notre Dame) Baker's Tale

Two-thousand-two Notre Dame graduate Christine LaSorda said she's been baking since she was very young. But it was a much later in life that she decided she wanted to combine her passion for baking with a deep-seated desire to make people happy. 

"I think we all need a purpose," LaSorda said, "a reason to get up every day and contribute to this world. I wanted a purpose that made people happy, even for a little bit, even if it was just because they were on a sugar high-I needed something I could feel good about."

Well it appears that LaSorda is two for two: Her gourmet bakery in downtown Chicago, A Baker's Tale," is truly a unique combination of her considerable baking skills and very happy customers, with a dose of Lewis Carroll.

"The looks on customers' faces when they taste something I've created is one of the best feelings in the world," she said.

LaSorda's 42-seat bakery, located in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago, opened in the spring of 2014. She said its name and decor are inspired by a childhood love of storybooks, especially "Alice's Adventure in Wonderland," by Lewis Carroll.

LaSorda said she wanted to make her shop appear like one is stepping into a fairy tale. "You tread where Alice, the Mad Hatter and the grinning Cheshire Cat once ventured all while you enjoy cupcakes, pastries, desserts and specialty cakes," she said. 

To read more on LaSorda's story, click here.
Notre Dame Alum Named "Super  Doctor"

Ryan S. Reeves, M.D., a 1989 graduate of Notre Dame, was named December 1 to Texas Monthly magazine's annual list of "super doctors."

Reeves, who is a physical medicine and rehabilitation physician for Spine Team Texas, a spine center specializing in the treatment of neck and back pain based in Southlake, Texas, was honored after a rigorous, multi-step review of physicians practicing in Texas.

"What makes the Super Doctors list such a significant achievement is the detailed selection criteria," said Mark Hood, CEO of Spine Team Texas. "Not only are physicians vetted for professional accomplishments, they must also have attained peer recognition during the period of time they've been in practice."

Reeves' inclusion on the Super Doctors list this year follows his presence on the Rising Star™ Super Doctor list in both 2013 and 2014. Rising Star candidates are evaluated over 10 areas including fellowships, professional activities, leadership positions, board certifications, honors and awards and have been fully licensed to practice for approximately 10 years or fewer. While approximately 5 percent of the physicians within Texas are named to Super Doctors, no more than 2-1/2 percent are named to the Rising Stars list. Reeves also recently received the distinguished Castle-Connelly "Top Doctors" nomination by his peers.

To read more on Dr. Reeves, click here.
Only Triplets to Graduate from Notre Dame Reminisce

When brothers Jeff, Mike and Bill Hannon get together, the talk sometimes goes back to Notre Dame High School, from which the three graduated. After all, they certainly have a lot to talk about since their high school years overlapped-to the day! You see, the Hannon brothers represent the only triplets in history to graduate from Notre Dame-Harper Woods or Pontiac-and in the Hannons' case, that graduation day was in 1986. 

Editor's note: Pontiac Notre Dame currently enrolls triplets Sarah, Katherine and Allison Bauer, who are juniors.

For Mike Hannon, it really wasn't a big deal that his two brothers were in the same school at the same time. 

Sure, they sometimes played sports together-either on the track or football teams. "But during the school day, we had different class and subject interests outside of the required courses," he said, "so we didn't see each other that often during the day, especially after freshman year. It was funny, though, when kids sometimes would approach me in the hallway and just assume I knew precisely where my brothers were at all times-'Don't you guys have telepathy or something?'"

Jeff Hannon said when they were growing up in Roseville, and then in grade school at St. Germaine, the three of them really didn't know too much about Notre Dame other than the fact that it "unfortunately" was an all-boys school. But as is the case with most 8th graders, it was their parents who made the final decision for their high school. And Jeff thinks it was the perfect decision.

To read more, click here.
1965 Notre Dame Football Team Honored at Prep Bowl

Members of the 1965 Notre Dame High School football team, which won the Catholic League in 1965, were celebrated Saturday at the Catholic League's annual Prep Bowl at Ford Field. Team members on hand Saturday were honored on the field between the CHSL C-D championship game and the A-B championship game. 

The 1965 Fighting Irish team, coached by the legendary Walt Bazylewicz, defeated St. Ambrose High School, 27-21, at the 18th Annual Soup Bowl, which was played at the University of Detroit Stadium. The Soup Bowl was the predecessor to the CHSL Prep Bowl and determined the Catholic League champion in football.

Notre Dame's 1965 team finished the season 5-1-1 in the league and 7-1-1 overall after its final game of the season, a 14-14 tie vs. the Detroit Public School League champion, Denby High School.

This year's Notre Dame team was defeated in the Prep Bowl by Detroit Loyola High School, 40-10.

Alum at U-M Named to Academic All-District First Team

Taylor Timko ('14), Notre Dame alum and member of the University of Michigan womens soccer team, was named to the Capital One Academic All-District Five first team, the College Sports Information Directors of American (CoSIDA) announced on Thursday (Oct. 29). Sophomore midfielder Taylor Timko will now advance to the Academic All-America team ballot, with first-, second- and third-team All-America honorees to be announced Tuesday, Nov. 24.

To be eligible, nominated student-athletes must be a starter or important reserve with a minimum 3.30 cumulative grade-point average, in his/her second year at the current institution and must have played in at least 50 percent of the team's games.
After transitioning from outside back to outside midfielder this season, Timko has become Michigan's leading point-getter, tallying 17 points on seven goals and three assists. Her 17 points currently rank tied for sixth in the Big Ten Conference. The Rochester Hills, Michigan, native now has 11 goals and five assists in her young career. She has played in all 39 games in her Michigan career, starting 38 of those. 

Timko became the ninth player in program history to record a hat trick when she scored three goals in U-M's 2015 season opener. As a freshman in 2014, she was named to the Big Ten All-Freshman team and received Michigan's 2014 Female Rookie of the Year Award for all sports. Academically, Timko is enrolled in the College of Literature, Science and the Arts and has yet to declare her major.

Notre Dame Alums Speak to Current Students During 2nd Speaker Series Event

On October 28, more than 75 students in Notre Dame's upper division were on hand when the second of a planned monthly series of career presentations by Notre Dame alums was held in the school's media center. 

The focus of the event was the healthcare industry and seven Notre Dame graduates agreed to participate, with one, Dr. Kyle Jackson '99 (NDP), answering questions remotely from Johns-Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. Last month, a number of alums spoke to Notre Dame students about careers in engineering.

Notre Dame Prep graduate ('98) and ND Alumni Association chair Scott Lockhart, who organized the event, said the association was more than happy to continue matching current student interest with alumni professionals across a range of disciplines. 

"The overwhelming student demand for this type of assembly was met by wonderful alumni ranging from Notre Dame's Class of 1989 through the Class of 2009 who shared a multitude of paths to successful careers in medicine," he said.  

Notre Dame's Director of Alumni Relations, Beth Campbell, said it was exciting to see so many alums willing to take time from their schedule to speak to the students.
"There is nothing more relatable for our students than to see first-hand the success of our alumni," she added. "We think the students benefit greatly from these types of events."

Thank you to the following alumni for their participation in this months speaker series!

Tiffany Calderon, RN- '09 (NDP)BSN Registered Nurse in Interventional Cardiology, Royal Oak Beaumont Hospital

Jade Curry-Burns- '98 (NDP) Director of Healthy Teens Community Care Center Detroit, Community Health Connection Inc.

Kammie Fabian-Gaytan, DO, F.A.C.O.O.G.- '97 (NDP) Board Certified Obstetrician and Gynecologic Surgeon, McLaren Port Huron

Fabian Fregoli, MD- '89 (NDHS) Vice President for Quality and Patient Safety, St. Joseph Mercy Oakland

Kyle Jackson, MD- '99 (NDP) Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fellow

Dave Knesek, DO- '99 (NDP) Orthopedic Surgeon, Detroit Medical Center

Jill Patterson- '98 (NDP) Registered Nurse, St. John Providence Health System

Scott Lockhart, '98 (NDP) Chair of the Notre Dame Alumni Association, served as facilitator for the speakers.

To read the speakers' bios, click here.
The Principals Launch a Challenge
Fr. Joe needs your help! As we move into the holiday season, Fr. Joe, Mrs. Mistretta, and Mrs. Atkins are jumping in to help us make this another banner year for The Notre Dame Fund. In the video below, they talk about the importance of the fund and officially launch our $50,000 Principals' Challenge.

The challenge will be supported by calls from Juddee Milito and Associates* over the next six weeks. Juddee runs a small, Michigan-based phone-a-thon center and specializes in helping Catholic schools raise money for their annual appeals.
Please consider making a pledge through the phone-a-thon, via mail, or online at:

Notre Dame Completes Successful Run of 'Into the Woods'

The Notre Dame theatre department's adaptation of the popular stage play and musical, "Into the Woods," finished up a very successful four-day run at Avondale High School's theatre on November 22.

"I am so proud of all who have been a part of the show this weekend," said Notre Dame's theatre director Meredith Gifford. 

Show director says play was a real treat

David Fazzini, who heads Notre Dame's choir department and directs the musical, said the play was a real treat for both young and old.

"Legendary lyricist Stephen Sondheim intertwined familiar childhood characters through his musical score to tell a new story," said Fazzini, now in his 17th year at Notre Dame. 

"It was really an exciting adventure!"

According to Gifford, the students did a fantastic job. For those didn't get the opportunity the play, she said it revolved around a curse on a once-beautiful witch and on a baker and his wife, who remain childless. 

"Three days before the rise of a blue moon, the trio ventures into the forest to find the ingredients that will reverse their spells and restore the witch's beauty: a cow as white as milk, hair as yellow as corn, a cape as red as blood, and a slipper made of gold," Gifford said. 

"During their journey, they meet Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel, and Jack and his beanstalk, each one also on a quest to fulfill a wish. Our student-actors really do a great job bringing these diverse characters together into one big story."

To see more pictures from the musical, click here.
Inspiration: Notre Dame Faculty Members on Lessons and Life.

The following is a collection of articles culled primarily from interviews with a number of Notre Dame's many esteemed faculty members.
The conversations range from short video interviews and student memories to articles taken from Q&As. Find out why Notre Dame teachers are different - and why they make such an extraordinary commitment to education.

To read more about our faculty, click here.

For more Notre Dame news,  click here.
Addison Oaks Christmas Tree Farm - Frank Rimi '71 (NDHS)

It's that time of the year when we will be putting up our Christmas trees! Here's a chance to support Notre Dame and a Notre Dame High School alum's business.

For each tree sold, Addison Oaks Christmas Tree Farm will donate $5 back to Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy. The tree farm is owned and operated by Frank Rimi '71 (NDHS), his wife Cathy Rimi and their three sons. The 20-acre site was first planted as a tree farm in 1988 and features rolling, scenic topography. The farm is nestled between two parks in northern Oakland Township.

Visit for a map and information.

Be sure to print out the Donation Coupon and present it at the time of purchase.
Notre Dame Alumni Association on Facebook, Twitter


"Like" the Notre Dame Alumni Association Facebook page to receive news and updates. Follow us on Twitter too! 


All alumni are encouraged to join the conversation and post your own memorable photos and videos from your time at Notre Dame or one of the predecessor schools. Or you can post recent status updates and photos to let other alumni know what you're up to!  

Don't forget to utilize the alumni business directory


Be sure to check out our alumni business directory. If you would like to add your business to our list please contact Beth Campbell at

For a list of upcoming class reunions   

Considering planning a reunion for your class? The alumni office can help you get started. Call (248) 373-2171, ext. 3, or email for details. 

We pray for those who have died:

Linda Pearce- '60 (SM)  12-4-15
Thomas Cencer- Grandfather of Jeremy '05 (NDP) and Shawn '07 (NDP) 12-4-15
Madonna Petrusha- '59 (SM), wife of Bob, '59 (SM) 12-3-15
Lorraine Walby- Mother of Brian, '68 (NDHS) and the late Alan, '66 (NDHS) 12-2-15
Byron Bliss Jr.- '66 (NDHS) 12-2-15
John Adamo- Brother of Richard '89 (NDHS) 12-2-15

Richard Brelin- Grandfather of Peter '12 (NDP) 11-30-15
Maria "Mary" Gammicchia- Mother of former board member Gasper, Grandmother of James '99 (NDP) and Jennifer '02 (NDP)  11-30-15
Sophia Saverino- Mother of Cyril, '66 (NDHS) 11-28-15
Ellen Cacioppo- '40 (SM)11-26-15
Sally Blascyk- '64 (SM) 11-25-15
Thomas Zelinski- Brother of Michael '65 (NDHS) 11-23-15
George Blaz Jr.- Father of George '85 (NDHS) 11-23-15
William Galbraith - Father of Jim '78 (NDHS), Gary '79 (NDHS) and Pete '81 (NDHS) 11-22-15
Robert Pazdro- '70(NDHS), cousin of Jim Mandl '66 (NDHS) 11-21-15

Frank Syron Jr.- Husband of Patricia (Reed), '59 (SF) Uncle of Maureen Syron-Wood, '81 (PC), great uncle of Matthew Wood, '19 (NDP) 11-20-15
Debra Lesnau- Wife of Michael, '72 (NDHS), mother of Robert, '98 (NDP), Sarah, '01 (NDP), Michael, '06 (NDP) 11-20-15
Donald Stork- Grandfather of Eric, '09 (NDP) and Stacy, '11 (NDP) 11-20-15
Eric Wencel- '91 (NDHS) 11-19-15
Chester Kus- Father of Thomas, '81 (NDHS) 11-17-15
Maria Tarchala- Wife of Gerald, '81 (NDHS), sister-in-law of Steve, '82 (NDHS)
Thomas Primeau-'59 (NDHS), Brother of Jim Primeau '62 (NDHS) 11-11-15

John Wendling- Father of Paul '72 (NDHS), grandfather of John '00 (NDHS), father in law of David Kippen '75 (NDHS) 11-5-15
Jerry Zubalik- '41 (SF) 10-29-15
William Shield - Father of Bill NDHS '77, Jim NDHS '79 and the late Dave NDHS '74 10-28-15
Dorothy Popis- Mother of Keith '76 (NDHS), Kevin '77 (NDHS), grandmother of Ashley '03 (NDP) 10-26-15
Mona Widmaier- Mother-in-law of Joanne Widmaier, grandmother of Jonathan '02 (NDP), Brian '01 (NDP), and Jaclyn '06 (NDP) 10-15-15
Ron Ruth - '58 (NDHS) 10-13-15

Prayer List: click here
Email your prayers and petitions to
NDP = Notre Dame Prep; NDHS = Notre Dame High School; OC = Oakland Catholic; PC = Pontiac Catholic; SM = St. Michael; SF = St. Frederick.