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Class Notes

Class of 2000 susan lin

Susan R. Lin ’00 (BA, mass communications) has been named Master of Wine by the Institute of Masters of Wine. The Master of Wine credential is recognized globally for the highest standards of rigor in its holistic examination of all aspects of wine. Lin joins a prestigious group of 418 Masters of Wine around the world, and is one of 56 Masters of Wine in the United States.

The Masters of Wine exam has been given since 1953 and tests the breadth and depth of the candidate’s theoretical knowledge and practical skills in the art, science, and business of wine. Lin earned the title by passing the three stages of examination consisting of a series of theory papers and blind tasting exams, and the passing of an academic research paper.

Lin is the Head of Wine Expertise for online fine wine retailer Belmont Wine Exchange in the San Francisco Bay Area, serving customers worldwide. As a consultant she curates wine collections, designs wine programs, and specializes in wine and spirits music pairings and events.

“I am incredibly honored to become a Master of Wine,” said Lin. “Being a Master of Wine entails great responsibility. I am even more inspired to bring my best to the industry and to continue sharing my passion for wine with our customers and colleagues.”

After graduating from UC Berkeley, Lin began a career in high tech. She worked for Advanced Micro Devices; Google, where she managed Google Search quality; and then Google Maps for East Asia to strive for a better local user experience.

A lifelong devotee of music, Lin is a classical pianist and holds a Master of Fine Arts in classical piano performance and musicology. She has performed internationally as a Chinese classical and folk dancer. Lin also works with performing arts organizations to grow their audiences through innovative programming and events, integrating wine whenever possible. Her joy is to create memorable experiences through wine and the performing arts.

Class of 1953

Gary and Coralee George Mueller have lived at The Forum at Rancho San Antonio in Cupertino for the past 15 years. The pandemic has afforded them time for lots of reading, walking, listening to music, and doing Zoom and Facetime calls. Now fully vaccinated, Coralee and her husband look forward to light at the end of the tunnel.

Chip Wray lives in rural Sonoma. His family includes four children, all in their 60s, ten grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. Chip looks forward to increased mobility after a hip replacement this summer.

Bob Tanem continues live broadcasting of his weekly radio show, Bob Tanem in the Garden, Sundays at 9 a.m. on KSFO.

Patti Paine Whisler, a resident of Seattle, WA since 1963, was program manager for the City of Seattle, working with neighborhoods to strengthen their relationship and impact with city government. She retired in 1992. Patti served for a decade on the Council of Historic Seattle. It’s hard to believe that in just two short years our class will celebrate its 70th year since graduating from Berkeley.

Class of 1951

We have weathered injections of Moderna or Pfizer and continued with masking for an eventual reintroduction to congenial living. Your Secretary has been waiting patiently to hear words of encouragement on a November reunion.

As much as I had hoped to cement plans by March 2021, there is still no confirmation of a campus reunion at the stadium concurrent with Pappy’s Boys in November. All is still on hold.

Bob Sockolov of San Francisco has been in touch, as have others, with inquiries.

Jim Marinos from San Diego has two dates in November for Pappy’s Boys with neither event confirmed.

The moment I hear from the Stadium Club, plans will be disclosed or cancelled. Please keep the faith and your good health.

—Elayne McCrea, Class Secretary

Class of 1952

Paul Petruzzelli wrote of developments in his life since our college years: Three days after graduating he was on his way to a bicycle tour of Europe. Then OCS in the fall, duty on a destroyer, and a year with the Naval Advisory Group in Korea. He and his wife, Alice, an RN, have a family of four and now great-grandchildren.

Paul has been retired for 30 years, and he and his wife have traveled extensively. A highlight was a 52-day Grand Cruise to the Mediterranean and Africa to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary. Paul is a “proud alumnus” and two of his granddaughters have attended Cal.

Class of 2002

Linsey Marr, Ph.D. ’02, the Charles P. Lunsford Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Virginia Tech, has been selected to receive a 2022 Outstanding Faculty Award from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia. Linsey is one of fewer than 12 worldwide experts on aerosol transmission of viruses. She has been working with airborne viruses for the past 13 years, but her expertise became widely known during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Class Secretary: Onpracha Jiwajinda, ojiwaji@gmail.com

Class of 2009

Justin Chapman came in second place in the Hard News category and third place in the Obituary/In Appreciation category at the 63rd Los Angeles Press Club’s Southern California Journalism Awards in 2021. 

Class Secretary: Flavia Garcia, flaviasnow86@gmail.com

Class of 2008

Jessica Castillo Vardaro, assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at San José State University, won the Animal Welfare Institute’s Christine Stevens Wildlife Award in 2021. She is assessing the American pika population’s vulnerability to various threats, including climate change and livestock grazing, through genetic analysis of their fecal pellets. She received a bachelor’s in conservation and resource studies from Cal. 

Class of 2018

This fall, Yvener J. Petit, MBA ’18, joined Live Nation as a director of strategic initiatives and operations. In addition, Yvener has recently been elected to serve as an executive committee and board member of Communities in Schools of Los Angeles, a nonprofit that focuses on providing 1:1 case management for nearly 1,000 at-risk Los Angeles Unified School District students, helping them stay in school and achieve in life.

Class of 2013

Navona Records has released French Connections, a new album of French works for harpsichord performed by Jonathan Rhodes Lee, M.A. ’07, Ph.D. ’13. The pieces selected for this collection celebrate the small, tight-knit pantheon of 17th-century French harpsichordists who helped shape the instrument’s repertoire. Music by Louis Couperin, François Couperin, and Antoine Forqueray comes alive through performances by Jonathan, with recordings engineered and mastered by multiple Grammy–winning classical music producer Brad Michel.

Class of 2010

Quinton Johnson, J.D. ’10, joined Stanton Law in April 2021. An active member of the bar in Georgia and New York, his business transactions practice focuses on advising and counseling entrepreneurs, start-ups, and small-to-medium businesses throughout the business life cycle. While at Berkeley Law, Quinton served as president and treasurer of the Law Students of African Descent and productions editor for the Berkeley Journal of African-American Law & Policy.

Class of 2020

Ceylan Ersoy writes: “In the past year, I have been working in an extremely successful start-up called Insumo (insumo.io), founded with the mission of helping people optimize their lives through positive habit journeys. We are building a productivity community where people can collectively take on challenges in habit building and capitalize on successful productivity strategies. I would love to share this with Cal’s alumni in order to grow our audience on our social channels; invite interested alumni as guests to our weekly podcast/video series Habit Talks, where we host seasoned professionals in the productivity industry; or support alumni to download our app.”

Class of 1996

Michael Neuman, Ph.D. ’96, writes: “Happy to say I’ve moved to Point Reyes, where I kayak, swim, run, hike, and bike regularly; volunteer with several nonprofits; and see Byron Miller Ch.E. ’77. My sixth and seventh books, Handbook of Regional Design and Sustainable Infrastructure for Cities and Societies, came out last year after Engendering Cities was published in 2020, all by Routledge. I’m a lead author with Cynthia Rosenzweig’s Climate Change and Cities, out this year by Cambridge University Press. On the side, I am a half-time professor of sustainable urbanism at the University of Westminster in London.” 

Class Secretary: Eda Chao, 393 Dean St Apt 2B, Brooklyn, NY 11217, edachao@yahoo.com