- Haas Home
- Haas Newsroom
- Fall 2010 CalBusiness
- Cover Story
- Featured Stories
- In Brief
- Power of Ideas
- Alumni News
- Personal View
- About CalBusiness
- Past Issues
David Rea, BS, of Stockton, Calif., writes, “In my 91st year, my wife and I still enjoy travel, visits with our three kids and four grandchildren, and lots of reading and playing bridge.”
Mimi “Mary” (Renard) Knox, BS, of Alamo, Calif., writes, “Join us for the Class of 1950 60th Reunion 11:30 a.m. Nov. 19 at the Claremont Hotel in Berkeley. For further details e-mail email@example.com.”
John Robert “Bob” White, BS, of Palos Verdes Estates, Calif., and his wife, Marilyn, spent two weeks in Germany and Prague. They visited Berlin, Potsdam, Wittenberg, Desden, Prague, Vienna, Salzburg, Munich, and Oberammergau, where they saw the 2010 Passion Play.
Eugene Bramhall, BS, of Provo, Utah, writes, “As an undergraduate at Cal, I took a class in insurance law from Professor John Cowee. That, along with a class in labor law from Professor Votaw, persuaded me that my career was not to be found in accounting. After two years in the Army in France, and a year with Shell Oil in San Francisco (in accounting!), I attended Boalt Hall, graduating in 1960. After practicing law in California and the western Pacific for 17 years, I joined the Office of General Counsel at Brigham Young University (BYU) in 1977, where I retired as general counsel at the end of 2000. Among other things, I taught as an adjunct in BYU’s MBA program for 10 years and lectured at the law school. I met my wife at Cal, and we celebrated our 56th anniversary in July; there are five children, 22 grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. Four of our kids attended and graduated from BYU, one with a JD, another with an MBA. One daughter swam on the Cal women’s swim team and married the captain of the men’s team. I am presently associated as of counsel with a large law firm in Salt Lake City. As a short summary of a lifetime of work, this is as accurate as I can make it. But, the point in my writing is to note the passing of Professor Cowee. I still remember his class in insurance law. A marvelous teacher, he also impressed me, even then, as a genuinely kind man, one who knew his stuff, but loved sharing his passion for learning at least as much. He challenged his classes to learn the materials presented, but more importantly, how to solve problems. He was well regarded and a popular professor at Boalt. His elective insurance law classes were always full of law students who enjoyed his warmth and humor (characteristics that were in short supply in law school) as well as the subject matter. Among other things, Professor Cowee, with compassion and understanding, encouraged a classmate to complete his law degree when the outcome might have been different. Other professors have come and gone, but the news of Professor Cowee’s passing has reminded me of my debt to Cal and of the importance of an undergraduate business program with a great faculty that made all that followed possible.”
Lorimer Olson, BS, of Phoenix, Ariz., a former nursing facility administrator in Arizona and California, recently spent three weeks in Scotland visiting Kimberly, a granddaughter about to earn a master’s degree in the School of Theology at the University of Edinburgh. He writes, “Great visit; she is doing well. The day before leaving, I fell and broke an arm. Got a good introduction to the Scotland Health Care System. Not all bad.”
Eduardo Colmenares, BS, of Bolingbrook, Ill., writes,”This summer I was given the great news that the University Francisco de Paula Santander, Cucuta, Colombia, has reached 15,200 in enrollment. The university was co-founded by me in 1962, and was formally established by state government charter the same year. Never in my life did I think that what started as three classrooms and a small group of volunteers would turn out to be what it is today—the best and largest university in the state. I owe this great moment in my life to UC Berkeley, completely and totally. My love for Berkeley and my gratitude for how much it shaped my life and work make this new university, clearly, ‘Berkeley’s child.’”
Paiboon Bencharit, BS, of Bangkok, Thailand, is semi-retired and plans to pass on his fiberglass boat manufacturing business to his daughters.
Schuyler Bailey, BS, see MBA 1965 notes.
Vijay Kumar (Pandit), BS, of Mountain View, Calif., writes, “After graduating, I did actuarial work and passed three Society of Actuaries exams. After that I joined IBM, later their competitor Memorex, finally working for IBM’s competitor BMC for six years until 2005. I worked in 2006 for InternetSpeech, then worked as a consultant for IBM in 2007 at their Silicon Valley Labs in San Jose doing software work for their mainframe computers. I am on the advisory board of InternetSpeech, and perform backup customer support, and lead their booth in shows on a part time basis. Their sales have been static in the US, but they have opened markets in Asian countries: Thailand, India, Brunei, China, etc. I am the secretary of the BAIALC Lions Club based in the South Bay area, which meets monthly. My son, Jay, is a structural engineer, who helped in the construction of Sutardja Dai Hall on the UC Berkeley campus, which contains the CITRIS Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest for Society and other offices. My daughter, Amba, is busy as a mother to 2-year-old daughter Linden, and equally busy selling properties for Coldwell Banker in Santa Cruz, Calif. Amba, husband Marc, and baby Linden, vacationed to Mexico in May. Jay is engaged to Alyse Bertenthal, a San Francisco lawyer. They climbed Mt. Whitney together in March and Grand Teton in late July.”
Barry Gilbert, BS, see MBA 1977 notes.
Alejandro Stolarski, BS, see MBA 1971 notes.
Gisela Franken-Ohlemutz, BS, see MBA 1972 notes.
Frank Sperling, BS, see MBA 1977 notes.
David Allen, BS, writes, “Just a quick note to share this fabulous (?) picture! Still hanging in there at 60. Believe it or not the t-shirt was a coincidence.”
David Stone, BS, see MBA 1979 notes.
Joann Weiner Martens, BS, of Washington, D.C., writes, “I’m teaching at George Washington University in the economics department and the business school. I also joined the board of a not-for-profit group called Community Tax Aid that assists low-income taxpayers with their tax returns and other tax problems. And I write regularly for PoliticsDaily, which is an online daily newspaper that you can find at www.politicsdaily.com.”
The stock market’s recent focus on corporate governance matters has kept activist investor and governance specialist, Andrew Shapiro, BS, busy traveling the country speaking on governance reforms and his unique activist investing style. He recently presented at UCLA Anderson’s Director Education & Certification Program on “Activist Shareholder Dialogue” and also served on a panel, “A Growing Governance Role for IR,” at the National Investor Relations Institute 2010 Annual Conference. Andrew and the firm he founded in 1992, Lawndale Capital Management, are based in the San Francisco Bay Area, in the picturesque town of Mill Valley.
Christa Pedersen, BS, of Danville, Calif., is currently an account executive with Robert Half International. She was recently engaged to Larry Dodd, a former co-worker and business consultant at Arthur Andersen and Co. She writes, “Larry and I are available for speaking engagements on topics, such as leadership and change management; and managing for growth and turnaround strategy. We also run a weekend couples workshop for couples considering starting or ending a marriage. For more information, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Alan Seigrist, BS, see MBA 1996 notes.
Kevin Brown, BS, see MBA 1996 notes.
emael (formerly Ernesto Arellano), BS, will be highlighted in Galería de la Raza’s forthcoming anniversary catalog celebrating its 40th year as an interdisciplinary Chicano/Latino space for art, thought, and activism. He was also the curator for Celebrate! San Francisco, a contemporary art exhibition running from September 8 to October 9, 2010. For more information, please visit: icelebratemycity.com.
Walter Gordon, BS, of Modesto, Calif., writes, “Been busy this summer heading up expansion in the Central Valley for newly public company Primerica (PRI). Jaisica and I have been happily married for seven years and are expecting our third child this month.”
Peter Yu, BS, writes, “It’s been over two years since moving to Hong Kong with Oracle and taking on Asia-Pacific strategy and planning. I’m currently GM for and incubating a portfolio of four acquired businesses. Unlike big acquisitions that make headlines, there are many medium-to-smaller U.S. and European acquisitions that have never played in emerging markets and need to be piloted and nurtured like a startup. Anyone interested in growing technologies into new markets, let’s compare notes.”
Lawrence “Larry” Fox, BS, of Richmond, Calif., writes, “Life has been very busy. I successfully completed the organization and celebration of my 20th high school reunion. Enjoyed time with my family at the annual Cal Day on campus and really got my kids to see the school in a way other than a quick drive-by. I have had some interesting work projects, but am still looking for a full-time HR job in the area. Looking forward to a great fall season. Go Bears!”
Dan Reagan, BS, writes, “Launched Sweet Cake Bake Shop, an entirely gluten-free bakery, with my wife Allison, a fellow Cal grad. Our pilot bakeshop is close to our home in Kaysville, Utah. We ship our gluten-free baked goods, baking flours, and baking mixes across the US. Visit us at www.sweetcakebakeshop.com and join us on Facebook.”
Eleen (Hsu) Agustin, BS, writes, “I never thought I’d land in retail, but last November I opened a brick-and-mortar shop of my own in my hometown of Alameda, Calif. The shop is called Modern Mouse and was recently described in Alameda Magazine as ‘part art gallery, part retail store.’ We feature a fresh and exciting collection of apparel for men, women, and children; home decor; personal accessories; special occasion gifts; and more—made by local and independent designers. It’s been a fun and exciting challenge and a perfect blend of my experience in business (10-plus years of consulting and Web project management) and design (two years of selling handmade bags and accessories on Etsy and in local craft fairs), and I couldn’t be doing it without the emotional—and technical—support of my husband, Jimmy Agustin, who’s also a Cal grad from the EECS undergrad program. Visit us at www.modernmousegifts.com and www.facebook.com/ModernMouse. Go Bears!”
Robert “Scott” Boyer, BS, of Los Angeles, writes, “For the past 13 years, I have been working as the business manager for a small, independent insurance brokerage I own and operate alongside my father. In addition to that, I am also working on the first draft of a novel I started just over a year ago. In my free time, I do volunteer work with various children’s organizations and work out and play basketball as often as possible.”
Jeff Bowerbank, BS, of Concord, Calif., is the director of corporate accounting at Charles Schwab. He’ll be celebrating 10 years there this fall.
Ray Madronio, BS, of New York, writes, “I helped start www.LocalBigwig.com, a unique marketplace for short-term home rentals. I love New York, but I still regard the Bay Area as my home. I am excited to attend Cal at New York events, including one last night with Coach Tedford and Oski.”
Sanjog (Singh) Sikand, BS, of El Cerrito, Calif., writes, “After 13 years, two children, and stints at three Bay Area technology firms, I am enjoying a career with Sukhi’s Gourmet Indian Foods, the family business. The ethnic food category is growing and so is the business. Sukhi’s donates food to any local charity, so next time you host a nonprofit event in the Bay Area, be sure to contact us at email@example.com. The experience of working with family and running a business while balancing a growing family of my own is amazing and overwhelming at the same time. I feel blessed to have an inspiring boss (mom) and a great team (including both siblings and great co-workers). It’s precious to work with family the whole week and still look forward to seeing them on the weekend. We live close to Cal, giving me many opportunities to recall the wonderful years I had there.”
Michael Cheang, BS, of Newark, Calif., writes, “This past July, I took some time off from my work schedule to participate in a volunteer construction project in Clovis, Calif., for a Christian organization called World Changers. A total of 300 youth and adults from different areas of the country went to Clovis to serve the community by fixing up low-income houses. Currently I’m working in the accounting and finance department at New United Motors Manufacturing Inc. (NUMMI). I will be looking for other job opportunities after my work assignment at NUMMI ends later this year. If you know of any accounting and finance opportunities, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Tricia (Phuong) Tran, BS, and Travis Darrow (BA 98), of Hong Kong, are excited to announce the birth of their daughter, Kaylin Darrow, on April 11. They continue their Asia regional roles in financial services and IT. She writes, “This year Travis was also honored with the Bradford S. King Award for his grassroots work with alumni in Hong Kong, and is about to complete a China focused MBA here in Asia. Best regards and go Bears! (email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org).”
Jeremy Miller, BS, of New York, writes, “After graduating in May 2010 with my MBA from Columbia University, I launched my business, FSAStore.com, which is the only website catering directly to flexible spending account holders. We received startup capital from the school to help launch the business and currently have over 80,000 families signed up to our program. It has been busy as I also have a 15-month-old! Feel free to reach out: email@example.com or visit the site at www.fsastore.com.”
George Chen, BS, has been in the investment banking industry since graduation. After working in Minneapolis and Los Angeles, he is now a vice president based in San Francisco as part of Deutsche Bank’s Mergers and Acquisitions Group. He also recently finished his journey of visiting every active ballpark in Major League Baseball.
Kimberly “Koo” Lacovella, BS, of Brooklyn, New York, writes, “Last year, I got married at the San Diego Wild Animal Park. Our guests, my husband, and I had a blast. Career-wise, I’m scheduled to finish up my part-time MBA from NYU Stern in January 2011. Looking forward to having a bit more free time after I graduate (to spend more of it at work).”
Kirsten Wallerstedt, BS, writes, “After working almost five years for California Senator Leland Yee and passing some great legislation, I am moving from state politics into the international sector. In August I headed to Guatemala for five weeks to become fluent in Spanish. Then I went to Boston to start a master’s degree at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. My favorite free-time activity is working as a project manager with Engineers Without Borders for a water supply project in Kenya."
JC Pratt, BS, proposed to Jessica Mahoney in Machu Picchu, Peru, in August 2009. They were married April 10 in his hometown of Fallbrook, Calif. He writes, “Jessica and I honeymooned in Belize and enjoyed every minute away from email and work. Speaking of work, I have been working in the pharma/biotech space as a business development manager for the last year and at a media startup company before that. At the end of August I moved into a business development role at a technology startup company in San Diego. I continue to live in North County, San Diego, with my wife and our two dogs. We thoroughly enjoy living here and take advantage of the diverse and exciting offerings of our region. I live next door to my best friend (best man) and fellow Haas 2005 graduate Alex Turner. I am always looking to connect or reconnect with Haas or Cal alumni and welcome the opportunity to get together in Southern California. Jessica and I will be attending some Cal football games this fall and look forward to seeing old friends. Go Bears! (www.jcpratt.com).”
Mark Sithi, BS, of San Francisco, writes, “After working for five years at Triage Consulting Group, I was promoted to manager in August 2010. I know it’s a little unusual to still be at the same firm since graduation, but I’ve really enjoyed the work, people, and the industry. I guess I got lucky. My wife, Connie (BS, Integrative Biology, 2005), has embarked on a new career as a family, children, and wedding photographer (www.conniesithi.com) and is also obtaining her Montessori teaching credential. Meanwhile, our parents continue to bug us about their first grandchildren. We hope to see you at any Cal games this year. Go bears!”
Gregory Huang, BS, of Irvine, Calif., writes, “After working at the Blackstone Group in New York for two years, I wanted to see if I could make it as an entrepreneur. Last summer I started drinkwel, the first multivitamin specially formulated for people who drink alcohol. The product launched in May, and has been featured on numerous blogs, radio stations, and even NBC’s The Today Show. It was quite an education going from LBOs and securities analysis to product design and word-of-mouth marketing. Check us out at www.drinkwel.com. If anyone’s interested in giving drinkwel a try, shoot me an email and I’ll send you some. (firstname.lastname@example.org)”
Sandra Nee, BS, of Alhambra, Calif., has joined the green initiative and currently works at SunGreen Systems in Irwindale, Calif., providing renewable energy solutions to commercial and residential consumers. The company was started by two other Cal alumni who graduated from the College of Environmental Design. She is making use of her education at Haas as the marketing manager of the company.
Fennie Wang, BS, of Kampala, Uganda, writes, “In March 2010, I quit my job as a credit analyst at JPMorgan in New York to come to Uganda as a volunteer with a local microfinance institution. A chance meeting with human rights lawyers at the Microcredit Summit Campaign in Nairobi led me to stay in Uganda a bit longer, signing on as a project coordinator for an NGO called Microjustice For All. I am currently in Kampala setting up a new NGO for Microjustice, doing everything from field research and needs assessment to designing product schemes and building business relationships.
I returned to New York in August to attend law school at Columbia University.”
Nicole Anand, BS, writes, “After graduating from Berkeley in business and development studies in 2007, I worked for Google for a year in finance. After that, I joined the London School of Economics to pursue an MSc in development management. In January 2010, I joined OneWorld Foundation India, an information and communications technology for development NGO, based in New Delhi. It has been a thrilling ride so far. Thank you Cal for empowering me with a skill set and a desire to explore the unexplored, embrace uncertainty, and love the diversity that exists across the globe.”
Andrew Tai, BS, of Los Angeles, will be attending UCLA School of Law starting this fall.
James Lee, BS, of Sacramento, Calif., will be attending law school in the fall of 2010.
Karl Ruppenthal, MBA, of Berkley, writes, “I was interested in industrial relations, and I lived in Palo Alto. I went to see the professor of industrial relations at Stanford, but he acted like he didn’t give a damn. I hitchhiked to Berkeley to attend UC. That was the best decision I ever made. One of my teachers was Clark Kerr, who was then engaged in mediating the dispute between Harry Bridges, president of the Longshoremen’s Union, and the ship owners. I asked him how it was to deal with Bridges, reportedly a Communist whom the U.S. had tried to deport to Australia. ‘Much easier than with the ship owners,’ said Kerr. He worked out an agreement that would allow containers to be moved from the ships to awaiting trucks without having to be unstuffed then reloaded by the Teamsters. In return, the union was promised that they would lose no jobs. The ship owners put up $1 million as a deposit, but traffic increased so much that nothing was ever paid from that fund. I learned more from Kerr than from any other teacher I ever had. I now have two wonderful great-granddaughters, and a PhD from Stanford, where I taught for many years.”
Christy Reehl, MBA, of Fountain Valley, Calif., published an article, “Chapter 11 Cram-Down Plans: the Legacy of Till” in the Spring 2010 issue of the California Bankruptcy Journal.
Schuyler Bailey, MBA, of Berkeley, is married to Susie Thompson Bailey (a Cal, but not Haas grad, BA 65), and has a 6-month-old granddaughter, Eliana Miranda Bailey. He writes, “We love to babysit her!”
April 28-May 1, 2011
Lee Chaden, MBA, of Winston-Salem, N.C., retired as chairman of Hanesbrands Inc, a spinoff of Sara Lee Corp. in Dec. 2008. He still serves on the board of HBI, RR Donnelley, and Carlson Companies, as well as serving on several local not-for-profit boards. He writes, “I’m happy to have celebrated my 41st wedding anniversary with my wife Shelby and I’m enjoying life in Winston-Salem, the city of arts and innovation. Have two terrific adult daughters (sorry, both Trojan grads) and a beautiful granddaughter. Life is good.”
Marvin Lamoureux, MBA, of West Vancouver, BC, Canada, writes, “After turned 70 this past May, I am in the process of reducing my international education sector consulting practice to a couple of short-term projects per year. Since 1991, I have worked in 26 countries on projects funded by the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, the Caribbean Development Bank, as well as the US, Canadian, and UK governments. My wife, Irma (also retired), and I continue to do extensive travelling in Europe and North America, plus downhill skiing at Whistler (the site of the 2010 Winter Olympics).”
Ranney Thayer, MBA, of Palo Alto, Calif., writes, “My wife, Kathleen, and I just got back from a one-week trip to Kiev, in the Ukraine, and a two-week riverboat trip from Moscow to Saint Petersburg through lakes, canals, and rivers in Russia. It was great; although the weather was warm, we got back before the real hot weather hit and the fires started.“
April 28-May 1, 2011
Alejandro Stolarski, MBA, of La Jolla, Calif., was in Berkeley recently for the graduation of his son, Daniel, who obtained a PhD in physics. He writes, “Walked the campus, and it brought back many great memories.”
Gisela Franken-Ohlemutz, MBA, of Oakland, Calif., writes, “Since retiring in May 2006 as CFO/CAO from Mathematical Sciences Research Institute (MSRI), a dream job, I have been busy playing tennis, volunteering, and traveling. My husband and I recently celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary with a wonderful cruise from Venice to Istanbul and back. We continue to enjoy living in the Oakland hills with our two cats.”
April 28-May 1, 2011
Barry Gilbert, MBA, of Alameda, Calif., writes, “After a long, arduous career in retailing, I’m pursuing my passion for wine and for France. I’ve started a wine importing business called VinAccess International. In addition to importing wine, however, I also provide sophisticated software for wineries in Europe that wish to sell wine to visiting American tourists. “
Frank Sperling, MBA, of Moraga, Calif., writes, “I’ve led two professional lives simultaneously over the past two decades. From a vocational perspective, my positions in marketing, finance, and project management have enabled me to run my own management consulting firm, FS3 Group. From an avocational perspective, I’ve been heavily involved with numerous organizations, including a role as mayor of Moraga and serving on the board of directors for the Cal Alumni Association. I’m president on the board of directors of the Moraga-Orinda Fire District (an elected position) and I’ve recently been asked to extend my tenure on the CAA board for an additional year.”
Lori “Mary Lorain” Gibson Banducci, MBA, is the co-founder of a nonprofit called Artisans4Hope in Boise, Idaho. A4H works with the local refugee community to provide opportunity for artisans to make and sell their hand-crafted products. The nonprofit provides artisan refugees with sewing, knitting, and ESL instruction. Lori writes, “Our vision is to create an artisan cooperative that is run and managed by artisan refugees. We hope to help artisan refugees contribute to the financial stability of their own families and to create understanding and connections within the larger Boise community. As a former Kiva Fellow, I stay involved by interviewing applicants for new Kiva fellowships. I find this kind of work a lot more rewarding (not in a monetary sense) than any of my corporate work!”
David Stone, MBA, of San Francisco, writes, “A few years after leaving Cal, I happened to bump into Tim Crichfield, my former accounting professor in the city, and he asked me to join his consulting team at Ernst and Young. I stayed there for five years, got my CPA, and became a senior manager specializing in financial services consulting projects, mostly at their audit client, Bank of America. In 1987, I started my own consulting firm in the San Francisco financial district, DM Stone Recruitment Solutions, which soon evolved into a staffing and search firm specializing in financial services positions (securities operations, regulatory compliance, etc.) We’ve remained one of the main niche firms on the West Coast in that area, and are in our 23rd year now, which I guess is a good sign. Although I don’t get over to Berkeley much anymore, I’ll always have fond memories of my Cal and Haas experience, and can certainly say I value the contacts I made there! “
April 28-May 1, 2011
Joani Mitchell Krieger, MBA, writes, “Moved to the beach in Capitola, Calif., and am enjoying daily walks at the ocean, weekly sailing trips, dance parties, etc. Besides working as a management consultant for Oliver Wyman, Clarity, and OnPoint Consulting, I started my own travel business, I Love to Travel Too, which specializes in cruises and women’s volunteer tourism to third-world countries. I’ve been to Cuba, Ecuador (archaeological dig), and the Galapagos recently and will be going to Europe and Vietnam before the end of the year. My three children are all grown. Dan is running a political campaign in Arizona, Rachel is getting her master’s in social work in San Diego, and Shoshana is spending her junior year outside Paris in Rouen.”
Geoff Bick, MBA, writes, “I had a very busy FIFA 2010 Soccer World Cup period. I was in San Diego when the U.S. was knocked out, then in Barcelona when Spain beat Germany in the semi-final, but managed to be back in my hometown, Johannesburg, to see Spain beat the Netherlands at Soccer City! The occasion was spectacular and very emotional, in spite of the noise from the vuvuzelas. My wife, Erichka, and I were guests of Coca-Cola Africa, one of the partners, so we were very privileged to be treated like royalty in hospitality suites as well as prime seats in the stadium. I hold the Coca-Cola Africa Chair in Marketing at Wits Business School, so this was a wonderful perk!”
Beverly Dance, MBA, of Oakland, Calif., writes, “I had the opportunity to present three of the five days at this June’s Society for Human Resources Management annual conference in San Diego. I had 90 students from seven countries in my two-day class on base compensation; 150 people attended my concurrent session on the differences between federal and California employment law.”
William Zarit, MBA, arrived in Beijing in the fall to oversee the U.S. Department of Commerce’s activities in China -- from promoting exports to involvement in bilateral market access, export control, and intellectual property issues -- as the minister counselor for commercial affairs at the U.S. Embassy.
Pauline “Shiao-Hsu” Chan-Fabries, MBA, of Castres, France, is the CEO of Laboratoire de Dermo-Cosmetique Animale. Known for its brand, Dermoscent, LDCA excels exclusively in vet clinics through a comprehensive range of veterinary cosmeceuticals and nutraceuticals promoting the health and well-being of dogs, cats, and horses. Pauline is married to Dr. Lionel Fabries, a French veterinarian specializing in cardiology. They have two sons: Nicolas is at Sciences Po Paris for his master’s degree, and Maxime is entering medical prep school in Toulouse.
Brian Shefts, MBA, of Oakland, Calif., writes, “Last year a friend and I purchased Boulangerie Solignac, a commercial bakery in Brisbane specializing in frozen oven-ready croissants and pastries that are sold to fine hotels, restaurants, and resorts throughout the US. Acquiring the bakery was an obvious choice for me since I spent most of my career in tech and media. Fortunately I don’t actually make the products, although I have learned that yeast and sugar cause things to rise. This business was the perfect class project -- absolutely incredible products and great staff, but poor marketing, poor customer relations, and inefficient operations. We fixed the major issues, and sales are going great. The next few years are going to be very exciting. Feel free to contact me at email@example.com.”
April 28-May 1, 2011
Pamela Moraga, MBA, of Ashburn, Va., writes, “I live in the Washington, D.C., metro area where I support the U.S. Federal Sales Team with Hewlett-Packard. I enjoy my current role as a business development executive with the Advanced Programs Group. We are involved in helping clients upgrade their technology, transform data centers, streamline infrastructure, and implement cloud-computing solutions. My husband and I enjoy travel, especially European cruises. Our grown children have active lives in the Southwestern U.S.”
John Trotter, MBA, of Chula Vista, Calif., writes, “My daughter, Samantha Trotter, received her BS in economics from the University of California, Riverside.”
Edward Tse, MBA, see PhD 1985 notes.
Mark Youngblood, MBA, writes, “Over the last 18 years in Hong Kong, my efforts have focused on China investment banking at two companies, Shenyin Wanguo and Oriental Patron. Presently I run an investment boutique specializing in technology investment. Because of the financial crisis and availability of capital from China, Hong Kong is now a more dynamic place to do business between China and the U.S. In terms of quality of life, the lifestyle in Hong Kong is similar (except the tropical climate) to New York. It’s relatively easy to get out of town for the weekend to the beaches in China (two hours by car). Two hours by plane (from Hong Kong) puts you in any number of scenic places in China. Please feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Malcolm Brooks, MBA, of Rockport, Maine, writes, “I’m following the lead of Neil Civjan, MBA 89, and sending in an update. I’ve lived on the coast of Maine for 10 years now, composing music, mostly for films and churches. I also teach people how to become musicians and how to make up parts to play in any situation. I haven’t made a lot of money or become very famous, but I have succeeded in shifting from having a Type A personality to a Type B. I use everything I learned at Haas to make decisions and live in harmony with myself – 75 percent of the time.”
Scott Schaefer, MBA, of Folsom, Calif., was recalled to active duty with the U.S. Coast Guard and served 60 days as the deputy incident commander for the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Response in the Gulf of Mexico. Based at the Incident Command Post in Mobile, Ala., Scott was responsible for the response operations in Mississippi, Alabama, and the Florida Panhandle from the shoreline out to 60NM. He oversaw response efforts of over 26,000 personnel and over 4,500 vessels in the tri-state area. He has now returned to his full-time position as the deputy administrator of California’s Office of Spill Prevention and Response.
Chris Jay, MBA, of Grass Valley, Calif., is doing executive coaching and leadership development with Silicon Valley companies, and with McKinsey. He also recently completed a professional certification course in classical feng shui. He writes, “Sometimes you just have to go out to left field to reinvent yourself.”
Christine (Burke) Landon, MBA, and Geoff Landon, MBA, are living in Danville, Calif., with their two children, Rachel and Gregory. Christine is a director in corporate development and strategy at Agilent Technologies, and Geoff is at Oracle in supply-chain management. They attended the 20th Haas School reunion this spring and enjoyed reconnecting with colleagues. Rachel is off to college in Colorado this fall, and Greg is a junior in high school. They plan to attend some Cal Bear games this fall.
Ray Meadows, MBA, writes, “At long last I will realize my goal of teaching at a university. I have been appointed to the faculty of Hult International Business School’s new San Francisco campus. In the fall term, I will teach an MBA course in quantitative methods. I’ll also have the opportunity to teach electives at their campuses in Boston, London, Dubai, and Shanghai. But I’m still a loyal alumnus. I now have three jobs including my investment management business and the startup business of supplying residential mortgage modification optimization analytics for defaulted loan investors. If you know any distressed debt investors, send them my way.”
April 28-May 1, 2011
Junko “Matsuo” Yamaji, MBA, writes, “We’ve moved recently and have a new address. We’re still in the same neighborhood in western Tokyo, but have moved into a house up the hill from where we previously lived. Our new address is 4-31-18 Nakamachi, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo, Japan 158-0091.”
Gene Lash, MBA, of Danville, Calif., writes, “During 2010, the Lash clan celebrated the third and first birthdays of newest additions, Ireland Cecelia and Cael Dennis on May 5 and 6. Garrett Joseph finished his sophomore year at UCLA while joining the SAE fraternity; he is working at Morgan Stanley in Beverly Hills over the summer. Keaton Reeves completed his freshman year at San Ramon Valley High School with a 3.9 GPA. He also received his First Holy Communion at St. Isidore in April.”
Art Altman, MBA, of San Carlos, Calif., is managing research in implications of smart grid, wind, and solar generation for energy derivative risk management at the Electric Power Research Institute in Palo Alto, Calif. Those sharing an interest in financial management of new-age energy production can contact him at email@example.com.
Jacob Sayer, MBA, writes, “I am back in the Bay Area with my family (Mary and Nolan) after over a decade living abroad. We have recently moved into our new house in Portola Valley and are looking forward to living the California version of the good life!”
David Anderson, MBA, of Danville, Calif., retired May 31, 2010 from Palo Alto Investors LLC, where he was partner, director of research, and head of the firm’s energy investing practice. He writes, “During my nine years at Palo Alto, I participated in growing the firm from $130 million in assets to over $1.5 billion, and had the pleasure of working with some of the best people in the investment business! Now I can spend more time with my two daughters, Michelle and Sarah, and wife, Jill. I remain on the board of directors of Fisker Automotive. My other retirement plans include a return to coaching lacrosse, racing cars, learning, charitable work, and plenty of travel.”
Eric Krauss, MBA, runs the wireless machine-to-machine business for AT&T. He took his family on a national parks road trip this summer, driving from their home in Seattle to the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Mt. Rushmore, and the Badlands. Eric writes that he “knows where Wall Drug is.”
Carl Mahr, MBA, will be moving back to his roots in Baden-Würtemberg, Germany, with his family of Nicole, Enno (2 1/2) and Ella (six months). They just bought a home in Stuttgart and welcome potential guests to contact them next summer.
Gina Ney Salaices, MBA, of Lafayette, Calif., is living in the Bay Area again, after 12 years living out of state. She and Richard Ney have two sons. Gina has accepted a position in MBA recruiting at Haas, and hopes to see and talk to her former classmates soon.
Kathryn Willson, MBA, of Kirkland, Wash., writes, “It has been serendipity, really. I used my Haas degree to successfully shift my career from environmental design to technology, and now after 15 years, I get to come around full circle to combine my passions for architecture, the environment, and software. Microsoft is taking environmental sustainability seriously, and has recently given me the opportunity to develop our partnering strategy in this space to develop solutions for our homes, workplaces, vehicles, and transportation systems that will help us manage how we use energy. It is so great to come to work every day!”
April 28-May 1, 2011
Kevin Brown, MBA, of Atherton, Calif., was named CEO of Coraid Inc., an ethernet SAN storage vendor in Redwood City, Calif.
Andre Marquis, MBA, of Berkeley, writes, “I just accepted the position as executive director of the Lester Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Haas. I couldn’t be more excited to continue to build on the great tradition of entrepreneurship at UC Berkeley. More to come!”
Alan Seigrist, MBA, of Hong Kong, writes, “My company, The Executive Centre, continues to move forward, despite many of the global economic challenges. In January we closed a management-led buyout, in which our old financial backer (New York Hedge fund Marathon Asset Management) was replaced with HSBC Private Equity. Having such a world-class financial institution backing us has been great news for the company. We have continued to grow our business with new locations in several Asian cities including Tokyo, Beijing, Hong Kong, and Singapore. If you ever make it to Hong Kong, please let me know.”
Vijay Bobba, MBA, of Bangalore, India, writes, “The Loyalty Marketing Services venture that I have been working on in India (www.imint.in) for the last five years has now moved on to the next stage of exciting growth with a pioneering number one position! India is ripe with opportunities and we hope to ride the wave of expansion that is underway in India!”
Carlos Albar Diaz, MBA, of Cordoba, Argentina, is working as a freelance consultant for Bain & Company’s mining practice. He was lucky enough to start a project in Johannesburg that gave him the opportunity to watch the World Cup Final at Soccer City. After a few months working in remote locations, Carlos has plans for a sailing trip in the Bahamas with his wife, Magdalena; Pilar Mercader, MBA 1997; and her husband, Gonzalo.
Eric Floyd, MBA, writes, “I was recently appointed senior vice president of Partner Development and Marketing at Allied Telesis Inc. in San Jose, which I originally joined in 2007. We settled in Sunnyvale a couple of years ago and enjoy the great weather and family activities in the area. My wife, Donna, daughter Elisa (4), and son Hayden (1) are currently in Korea visiting Donna’s family there. I will join them for a couple of weeks in September, and plan to see Haas friends in both Korea and Hong Kong. We also plan to meet up with several Haas classmates and their families in Orlando for Christmas this year.”
Wens Gerdyman, MBA, writes, “In July 2010 I visited Indonesia after a six-year absence. In Jakarta I had a reunion with Haas alumni Funadi Wongso, MBA 97; Hanifa ‘Bobot’ Indrajaya, MBA 97; and Sutisna Iskandar, MBA 96. In Surabaya I met Henky
Suwignjo, MBA 98. Bobot is the CFO at a mining company, Funadi is finance vice president at a large palm oil producer, and Sutisna runs his own consumer-goods contract-manufacturing company. Henky runs an electrical equipment manufacturing company. They are all doing well both career- and health-wise, and have beautiful wives and children. I have been consulting independently under the umbrella Fit To Market, helping companies in the Bay Area (and occasionally New York) conceive and launch new Web products and applications. I appreciate the flexibility it has given me as Angeline and I are coping with our 13-year-old daughter and 3-year-old son.”
Cheryl (Weiss) Hayes, MBA, of Oakland, Calif., joined the SBA originations team at California Bank and Trust after many years with GE Capital. She helps small businesses grow by providing financing for real estate, equipment, working capital, and business acquisition.
Thomas Leutzinger Jr., MBA, writes, “I made the move to Hollywood and became an advertising photographer at the beginning of 2009. Hollywood, with all of its celebrities, and a market the size of Los Angeles is the right place for my business, although the Bay Area was not easy to leave. Business leaders know the importance of having and maintaining the corporate image they want. Meeting with Haas alumni has given me the opportunity to introduce my newly discovered talents. Interested advertising art buyers can telephone 626-344-4831 and ask for Tom. Hopefully my fellow alumni are having as much fun in their careers as me. Go Bears!”
Dan Stryker, MBA, writes, “I am happy to say that I just made the jump into the nonprofit world. It is a great feeling to wake up each day and know that what I’m doing is helping make the world a better place! I’m now heading up product management for All for Good (www.allforgood.org), the nation’s largest search engine for service and volunteer opportunities. While I’m not busy with that I’m enjoying the beautiful mountains and craft-brewing scene here in Asheville, NC. (We just beat Portland for Beer City USA!)”
Gonzalo Arguello, MBA, “I’ve been in Buenos Aires since graduation. No wedding, no kids. I’m working for Netactica, the travel software and services company I co-founded eight years ago. I’m living in the beautiful San Telmo neighborhood, close to the Boca Juniors stadium...what else could I want? Big hug to all the MBA class of 1998.”
Raj Pai, MBA, of Saratoga, Calif., writes, “Enjoying the summer with my kids. The highlight of the summer was climbing Half Dome in Yosemite with my daughter (who is in her teens now, and was born when I was at Haas -- wow, time flies!). On the career front, I’m working on some exciting analytics solutions for customers in social media, Web analytics, Telco, and retail. And yes, the entrepreneurial spirit kindled in Haas is still alive. On to startup No. 2, claritics (www.claritics.com)! I attended the Haas alumni get-together this spring, and it was great to see and meet new students, catch up with friends, and hear from the stellar Haas staff. I look forward to staying engaged with the Haas family!”
Michael Dennis, MBA, of Portland, Ore., is working for the Nature Conservancy in Portland and DC, specifically on a deal to protect 7,000 acres in Hells Canyon in Northeast Oregon.
Colleen Reilly, MBA, of San Francisco, writes, “I left the big-company world for startup land in January 2010 and am now the vice president of marketing for Scrapblog (http://www.scrapblog.com), an online service for social storytelling through photos. I’m enjoying working with 15 talented people and getting things done quickly, with none of the bureaucracy associated with the larger companies for which I’ve worked! I continue to love life in the Bay Area -- great food, great music, and a wonderful quality of life -- and can’t imagine being anywhere else. I’m thankful for my friends and family, who make my life so rich and full. Wishing the best to all my classmates!”
Tanya (Shaw) Steinhofer, MBA, of Mill Valley, Calif., writes, “The biggest news on my end continues to be my financial planning business, Redwood Grove Wealth Management, which celebrated its first anniversary in May 2010. While it certainly hasn’t been easy starting a business in the depths of a recession, it has been a rewarding process, and I feel like I’ve gone back to school for an MBA in entrepreneurship. My focus continues to be on serving women and families with young kids. Other than that, I continue to enjoy living in Southern Marin with my husband and two young kids (2 and 3 1/2). I’ve completed several organized bike rides this year, including the Wine Country Century and the America’s Most Beautiful Ride around Lake Tahoe. I’m also enjoying the killer zucchini and juicy tomatoes from my garden.”
RJ Schembs, MBA, of Walnut Creek, Calif., writes, “Still working with Sam Enoka to help renewable energy project developers and owner/operators to succeed. The office is in San Ramon, so please give us a shout if you are passing through (www.viasyn.com). Hope all of you are doing great!”
Samuel Wilson, MBA, of Emerald Hills, Calif., became a co-portfolio manager at a startup hedge fund, Granite View Asset Management, after seven years at JMP Securities. He writes, “At a new and exciting stage in my career. I’m working on all the day-to-day business issues any small business faces. Everyday is an adventure. Go Bears!”
April 28-May 1, 2011
Radhika Shah, MBA, of Palo Alto, Calif., writes, “After spending several years founding and building VirtualSynaptics, a technology-based startup in the information retrieval and search space, I -- along with a couple of other Stanford alum -- started a group named RajeevCircle in memory of our mentor and advisor, Stanford Professor Rajeev Motwani. Rajeev was a Berkeley alum and an advisor to a large number of Silicon Valley startups, including Google. The purpose of the group is to continue Professor Rajeev’s spirit of helping people from every walk of life without any expectations of return. Our group’s initial focus has been to mentor startups, both for-profit technology ventures as well as for- and nonprofit social ventures, and to connect them to various resources, including advisors and investors. The group has drawn over 160 academics, entrepreneurs, investors, Bay Area Nobel Laureates, and folks interested in philanthropic projects. We meet once a month as a group at Professor Rajeev’s home. Information of our previous meetings, supported projects, and group members is available at www.facebook.com/RajeevCircle. The social ventures we are involved with and help include a nonprofit organization that is focused on helping underprivileged young women in Mozambique finish their schooling and to rise above some of the socio-economic pressures in their society, a for-profit social venture that is using technology to create a solution using cell phones to enable people in places like rural India to do financial transactions in the absence of a local bank, credit, or debit cards. We are also starting to explore projects involving mentoring children in Bay Area schools in places such as East Palo Alto. If any of you Berkeley alum are interested in joining our group and mentoring individuals, technology startups, or being involved in some interesting social ventures, or if you are a startup that would like advice or any other help from our group, I would like to invite you to join us at www.facebook.com/RajeevCircle and contact me or one of our other founders.”
Alison (Oliveira) Wheeler, MBA, writes, “I have been living in DC since I graduated from Haas. My 3 ½-year-old son, Zachary, will be getting a sibling in December. I finally made a long awaited career switch into international development 2 1/2 years ago. I am now director of marketing for Women for Women International, a humanitarian relief organization that helps women survivors of war rebuild their lives in countries like Congo, Rwanda, Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, and Bosnia. The organization provides direct aid, rights awareness training, and job skills training. I have found my dream job combining my passion for marketing with international work that makes a difference.”
Paul Dyson, MBA, of San Francisco, Calif., and his wife, Maureen, welcomed their son, Trevor Martin Dyson, into the world on July 21. Mother and boy are doing great. Paul writes, “I’m enjoying every minute of this new life phase, kind of like how I enjoyed O-Week and Dis-O-Week, but in a different sort of way. I’d write more, but he’s crying and needs changing. Gotta run! Hope everyone is doing great, especially MBA 2002.”
Scott Greenfield, MBA, of San Diego, Calif., and his wife, Kay, welcomed Conor Kailas Greenfield on May 20. Scott writes, “He has been keeping his parents quite busy. His first name is derived from the character Conor Larkin in the Leon Uris novel ‘Trinity’ and is a name we both liked considerably. His middle name, Kailas, comes from the name of a mountain located in Tibet, which Kay’s parents and I have both visited. It is considered to be very holy in the Hindu, Buddhist, Bon Po, and Jain religions.”
Haas Soccer Club alums Seth Halpern and Aaron McNally, MBA 02, made it to their second straight World Cup. They spent a little over a week in South Africa, mostly in Cape Town, where they enjoyed great food, sightseeing, and soccer. Seth writes, “The highlight of the trip was being on-hand for the thrilling USA-Algeria match at Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria and celebrating the last minute victory with the other US fans (see photo of post-game celebrations). See you in Brazil in four years!”
Chris Sklarin, MBA, of Cleveland, Ohio, writes, “After $28 million invested in over twenty companies through the last six years working with a local seed fund and an early/growth stage VC, I started working at BioEnterprise full time this year. BioEnterprise is a Cleveland, Ohio-based business formation, recruitment, and acceleration initiative designed to grow health care companies and commercialize bioscience technologies. We are focused on helping bring companies and investment to the Northeast Ohio region. Anyone passing through is welcome to get in touch.”
Sam Ladah, MBA, of Pleasantville, N.Y., writes, “Wendelee and I recently moved back to our home in New York after spending the last two years in London where we were on assignment with IBM. We were fortunate to see some of our old friends and classmates in London, including Jay Atkinson and Joost Krikhaar who were just passing through, and Delfino Canas, who is currently based in London with BT. I am now back at IBM’s corporate headquarters in Armonk, New York, as vice president of human resources, responsible for developing IBM’s global workforce strategy.”
Zeph Stuart, MBA, moved to Singapore in 2009 to look after strategy and business development for Samsung Asia.
Jason Anderson, MBA, of Ladera Ranch, Calif., writes, “I recently celebrated the birth of my first son, Logan Michael Anderson, on July 6. Our family has also relocated to southern California (Orange County), where I have joined Blizzard Entertainment as director of global consumer insights.”
Linh Do, MBA, writes, “This year I put aside kite-surfing in Vietnam and snowboarding in Hokkaido to learn meditation at an ashram in India for my Lunar New Year vacation in February. In April I passed the six-year mark of my NGO work in Vietnam and am taking a year or possibly more of personal sabbatical to travel and do things I’ve always wanted to do. My first stop was Chiang Mai, Thailand, where I’ve been learning Thai massage and yoga from some incredibly gifted teachers and spiritual beings. Next stop, Burning Man and the Bay Area. I have some educational courses penciled in, then trekking in Nepal and India in November or December, and eventually Turkey and a tour of Africa with frequent stops in Asia. Costa Rica doesn’t sound so adventurous but the surfing and natural adventures there would be sweet. I’ve been using couchsurfing.com to meet local hosts. And if you’d like to host and/or join the skipping tour, email firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Brad Irby, MBA, of Burlingame, Calif., and his wife, Marcela, have two energetic sons. He left his consulting practice to be CTO of Decade Software, a company focused on the environmental health industry. Though he travels to Fresno three days a week, he writes that he still has time for family and friends on the weekends.
Rajesh Krishnan, MBA, writes, “I just moved back to India with family after 16 amazing years in the US. I’m an entrepreneur at i2india in Bangalore looking to start something in the healthcare space. It’s exciting to be close to family and to watch myself and my family adapt to a new environment and culture. Bangalore seems like a close substitute for the Silicon Valley during its early years. We very much miss the Bay Area, but take comfort knowing the world is getting smaller every day. Wishing everyone the best, Rajesh, Sangeetha, Arti, and Varun.”
April 28-May 1, 2011
Diana Adair, MBA, of Campbell, Calif., has been working at Google in Mountain View since her graduation. She writes, “I’m in the PR department where I manage a team focused on Google’s core business, online advertising. I work closely with reporters, media outlets, producers, bloggers, and all kinds of industry experts. Google always keeps me busy as you can see from all of the headlines that you read! I’m still very passionate about CSR and alternative energy. We finally bit the bullet and moved to the Peninsula, although we miss Berkeley very much!”
Jennifer Donnelly, MBA, of Palo Alto, Calif., writes, “Lots of positive changes for me! My partner, Janet, gave birth to a baby boy on Jan. 8, and big sister, Shea (5), is having a great time with him. His name is Ian, and he is a good eater. He started out just over 8 pounds but is topping 22 pounds six months later. I also switched from Intel to Apple in May. I changed positions from silicon validation to IP management, and I’m really enjoying it. Would love to hear from classmates -- drop me a note!”
Jack Duan, MBA, of Pleasanton, Calif., left a Fortune 100 corporate marketing job to start a new company. He writes, “The vision is to build a distinctive California lifestyle brand in China by initially exporting and marketing high-end Napa wine.”
Qing Li, MBA, Mountain View, Calif., writes, “This summer the whole family spent a month traveling in China, Malaysia, Singapore, and Hong Kong. It was a wonderful trip involving delicious food, gorgeous beaches, friends and family, and the Shanghai Expo. Our two girls, Klaire (7) and Aiji (5), absolutely loved it.”
Dorothy Copeland, MBA, writes, “I recently relocated to Seattle to take a business development role at Amazon Web Services. We’re hiring, so let me know if you are interested in joining AWS. You can contact me at: email@example.com”
Anushree (Aggarwal) Kanodia, MBA, is based in Tokyo with her husband and recently launched an online fashion accessory website. She writes, “We worked hard to experiment with natural materials like wood, bone, horn, and leather as well as various handicraft techniques that have been mastered over centuries by Indian craftsmen in the interior of the country. Born out of this marriage of natural material and extensive handicraft is our labor of love, Anans. Please visit our website at www.anansbags.com. If you are In Tokyo and would like to say hello, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org. All the best!”
David Saxe, MBA, of San Francisco, along with two other Haas MBA alums, Brian Milovich and Brian Chuck, co-founded Calvera Partners, a San Francisco-based real estate investment firm focused on the acquisition of commercial real estate in the Bay Area.
Shyam Maniyar, MBA, writes, “As director of engineering in the Service Provider Technology Group at Cisco Systems, I was instrumental in the successful launch of a next generation edge routing platform, ASR9000. The product is getting great acceptance from many service providers across the world. As a hobby, I am writing a blog ‘Seeking Alpha by Adding Beta’ at smaniyar.blogspot.com. I like studying and analyzing macro-economic trends and linking it to investing. Thanks to Berkeley MBA courses, I have become better in my understanding of macro trends and did well in 2009 and 2010 with my personal portfolio.”
Ryan Drake-Lee, MBA, of Atlanta, Ga., writes, “I just came back from the World Cup in South Africa where I went to three matches and gallivanted around Jozi and Cape Town. We saw Argentina vs. Mexico at Soccer City stadium in Jozi, Brazil vs. Chile at Ellis Park stadium in Jozi, and Argentina vs. Germany at Greenpoint stadium in Cape Town. Along the way we climbed Table Mountain and rappelled off the face overlooking Camp’s Bay, and went to the Cape of Good Hope, where we wrestled with baboons and hiked down to the beach.”
Ariel Rak, MBA, writes, “I am relocating to Calgary to begin a market development role for Dow Chemical. I am excited about the new opportunity to further develop Dow’s market in the Canadian oil and gas industry.”
Edward Tse, PhD, of Hong Kong and Shanghai, China, writes, “My new book, The China Strategy: Harnessing the World’s Fastest Growing Economy (The Basic Books), was released in March. China is becoming a battleground for both multinational and local Chinese companies. Many multinational companies have already entered China in some form. As the China context evolves, so should the China strategy for these corporations. In this book, I share how China has restructured its economy over the last couple of decades and how it would continue to evolve going forward.”
Alan Wu, MFE, is a manager in the Transaction Economics Group at Ernst & Young in Chicago, where he builds economic models of corporate and partnership structures used for analyzing economic and tax consequences. This summer he spent a month in Japan in a language immersion program. He writes that learning and living in a different culture was a very enjoyable and memorable experience.