Class Notes

Did you get a promotion, add a family member, or find a new calling? Share your latest news with your fellow alumni. We print Class Notes in UNLV Magazine and list them in the online alumni directory.

Diane Karagienakos

August 28, 2020
Diane Karagienakos, '86 BSBA - Marketing, earned a master of arts degree with distinction in anthrozoölogy, the multidisciplinary study of human-animal relations, from England's University of Exeter in 2019. She recently led an online discussion, "Animals under a Human Pandemic: The Effects of COVID-19," at that university. She is seeking opportunities that draw upon my her experience in marketing, background in film, and education in/passion for animal rights and the natural world to design and implement strategies for organizations to become more responsible global citizens. She volunteers as an animal assisted therapy team with her pup, Picard, visiting a variety of vulnerable populations, such as people in hospice, psychiatric wards, and subacute wards, as well as community centers and children's literacy programs. Recently, she has combined her certifications as a  human-animal intervention specialist and pet loss grief recovery specialist and, along with Picard, formed a companion animal loss meeting in Sacramento, California, for people who have suffered the loss of a companion animal, either recent or in the past. Vegan Greek cooking is her hobby. She lives in San Francisco.

Brad Weiss

August 27, 2020
Brad Weiss, '00 MA Communication Studies, who uses the name Brad Carson for professional purposes, was voted as the No. 1 mid market program director in America for 2019, according to Barrett Sports Media's annual poll. He lives in Memphis, Tennessee.

Marissa Nichols

August 27, 2020
Marissa Nichols, '08 BS Human Services Counseling, '10 Master of Education Counselor Education, '10 PhD Higher Education Leadership, one of the emerging leaders in the landscape of intercollegiate student-athlete development, was named the first associate athletics director of the newly formed Cameron Institute at UC Berkeley in September 2019. The Cameron Institute, a comprehensive model to support student-athlete development, was made possible through a $12.5 million gift from C. Bryan Cameron and is based upon three pillars — leadership and personal development, career development, and community engagement. A former NCAA Woman of the Year finalist and first-team All-American softball player at UNLV, she had spent the past two years at Boston University where she was the institution's first director of leadership & career development and oversaw the inaugural Bloom Family Leadership Initiative, which focused on the holistic development of student-athletes. She lives in Oakland, California.  

Jasmine Crighton

August 27, 2020
Jasmine Crighton, '06 MA Journalism and Media Studies, is an assistant teaching professor in the School of Media & Communication at Bowling Green State University (BGSU) in Ohio. She started at BGSU in Fall 2019 after teaching for seven years at Western Illinois University in the Broadcasting & Journalism Department. She is a two-time winner of the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System’s Outstanding Advisor Award for College Television and recently has been recognized as a Distinguished Broadcast Adviser by the College Media Association. She also was named a “Noteworthy Journalism Educator” in 2019 by Crain’s NewsPro magazine.

Benjamin Montoya

March 10, 2020
Benjamin C. Montoya, '00 BA and '04 MA History, will publish a book, Risking Immeasurable Harm: The Diplomacy of Immigration Restriction in U.S.-Mexico Relations, 1924 to 1932, this spring with the University of Nebraska Press. He earned his Ph.D. in history from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 2015. He studies U.S.-Mexican relations. He also has published several articles and book reviews, and has served as a co-editor of and contributor to Beyond 1917: American Legacies of the Great War, which was published by Oxford University Press in 2017. He is an assistant professor of history at Schreiner University in Kerrville, Texas, where he lives with his wife and two children.

Sean Thornberry

March 9, 2020
Sean Thornberry, '15 BS Hospitality Management — Professional Golf Management, has been named to the board of directors for the Asian Golf Industry Federation. He lives in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Roman Felix

March 6, 2020
Roman Felix, '00 BS Health Education - Community, '02 MPA, is the founder and director of CUS, a diagnostic imaging group that is celebrating 20 years of excellence in diagnostic sonography. He also serves as a volunteer ambassador to the credentials promoting division of the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography. A U. S. Air Force veteran, he enjoys serene runs, reading, and winter travel.        

Victoria Lindemann

March 5, 2020
Victoria Norby Lindemann, '90 BA Theatre Arts, is an English teacher at Advanced Technologies Academy, a magnet high school. She also is pursing a PhD with a literacy emphasis from UNLV's College of Education.        

Jiajia Waters

March 5, 2020
Jiajia Waters, '13 PhD Math, moved to Los Alamos National Laboratory in 2015 to begin a second postdoctoral position within Theoretical Division in group T-3, the famous group where computational fluid dynamics (CFD) was invented. In 2018, she was promoted to to staff scientist, a permanent position, also in T-3. She is married to Tim Waters, '09 MS Math, '12 MS Physics, and '17 PhD Physics, who currently is a postdoc in astrophysics at UNLV. The couple met in graduate school in the math department while in graduate school. They married in 2012 and now have a daughter, 3, and a son, 2.                       

James Park

November 20, 2019
James Park, '13 BS Biology and '19 Master of Public Health, is an environmental health specialist. He is married to Ashley Burgess Park, '10  BS Chemistry.

Gail Joan Nicole Baker Clark

November 20, 2019
Gail Baker Clark, '01 BSBA - International Business, is an outreach dental hygienist with Smile America Partners and also is an insurance agent with Symmetry Financial Group. The mother of a son and a daughter, she is pursuing a law degree at California School of Law. Her hobbies include reading, cooking, gardening, working out, exploring nature, promoting eco-friendly causes, singing, and dancing. The family lives in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  

Jimmy Durbin

October 21, 2019
Jimmy Durbin, '91 BS Hotel Administration, is the father of James J Durbin II, '18 BSBA - Finance. Jimmy lives in Henderson.