Class Notes

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Received a promotion? Married your sweetie? Work got published? Tell us about it! We want to hear how Huskies like you are changing the world.

To tell us your news, simply fill out the submission form. You may be featured in the next issue of UConn Magazine alongside the accomplishments of your fellow alumni.

Jennifer (Soffayer) Hrbek ’05 (CLAS)

Jennifer (Soffayer) Hrbek '05 (CLAS) was selected to serve as the Executive Director of Positive Directions - The Center for Prevention and Counseling in Westport, Conn. in November 2017. Positive Directions is a nearly 50-year old organization that provides behavioral health counseling and prevention services throughout Fairfield County.

Marie Ann Mosher ’05 (CAHNR)

Marie Ann Mosher '05 (CAHNR) has published several books including #1 bestseller in men's and women's health "Beyond Food", and "The Secret Ingredient". She also hosts The Book Babes, a support community for women authors, and recently launched the Author Secrets Masterclass, an online course for independent authors to market their books without traveling, in person events, or time away from their families.

Monica Elizabeth Spencer Bell ’78 (ED)

Monica Elizabeth Spencer Bell '78 (ED) of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, died in the company of her husband and other family members on Oct. 22, 2017 at the University of Utah Medical Center in Salt Lake City. Life was a dance for Monica. She tap-danced and pirouetted through schools and hundreds of dance lessons while performing in many musicals and recitals. At UConn, where she performed as a Jet girl in West Side Story, she earned a BA in English Education. Monica spent many summer vacations with her parents and siblings visiting grandparents in Cheyenne, Wyoming, where her mother had grown up, instilling in her a lifelong love of the west. There was always a painting of the Teton Mountain Range hanging over her parents' fireplace. Monica's early career as a computer programmer led to a successful consulting business in New York City. In the early 1980s, she helped businesses automate processes using the new personal computer. In the late 1990s, Monica started her second career as a recruiter and career coach, helping thousands of professionals take the next steps in their careers. Monica and Bob Bell were married in Connecticut and lived there for several years before a job change relocated them to Alexandria, Virginia. Bob and Monica matched steps for 22 years sailing, traveling, working, volunteering, running marathons, dancing at every opportunity, and loving each other. Annual visits to Jenny Lake Lodge in Grand Teton National Park were an important element of her spiritual renewal. After retirement in 2013, they moved to Jackson, Wyoming, where Monica proclaimed, "My body has finally joined my spirit." Giving back through volunteer work was paramount to Monica. She served on the board of directors for the Senior Center of Alexandria and First Night-Alexandria, and volunteered for numerous children's literacy programs. Monica loved riding horses and volunteered with the Jackson Hole Therapeutic Riding Association. In the summer of 2016, she became a rider herself at JHTRA after suffering a major brain hemorrhage. In spite of the grueling physical therapy, Monica maintained her positive spirit and resiliency, often saying, "My new purpose is to inspire others by how I handle the adversity in my life."

Peter P LoCascio ’78 (CAHNR)

Peter P LoCascio '78 (CAHNR) and MFA School of the Art Institute of Chicago 1989 has work that is part of the Smithsonian Institute Archive of American Artists by the Paris Gallerist Darthea Speyer.

Dominick Cristofaro ’93 (BUS)

Dominick Cristofaro '93 (BUS) was recently promoted to Director of Finance Services for the District School Board of Pasco County, Fla. He began with the District 4 years ago as a Senior Finance Manager of Treasury.

Curt Balzano Leng ’97 (CLAS)

Curt Balzano Leng '97 (CLAS) was re-elected as Mayor of the Town of Hamden, Conn. in November, 2017 and was elected to serve a 2nd term as a Board Member of the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities.

Craig Yannes ’07 (ENG), ’09 MS and Angela (Marchetti) Yannes ’08 (CAHNR)

Craig Yannes '07 (ENG), '09 MS and Angela (Marchetti) Yannes '08 (CAHNR) announce the birth of their son, Leo. Leonard John Yannes was born December 9, 2017. The family lives in Milford, Conn.

Vicki A. Tesoro ’77 (CLAS)

Vicki A. Tesoro (Wollkind) '77 (CLAS) was recently elected First Selectman of Trumbull, Conn.