University of Calgary

Class Notes

Submitted by alumni on Tue, 05/26/2015 - 09:00.

Class Notes

Connect with fellow grads and discover who’s doing what where, including a chat with cookbook author, Rebecca Klemke, BA’06.
by Erin Moulton

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Tina Martel, MFA’00, published Not in the Pink, a graphic narrative chronicling her experience of being diagnosed with Stage Two breast cancer and the ensuing treatment and day-to-day experiences with the medical system that she endured. The book launched in November 2014.

Dr. Steven Boyd, MSc’97, PhD’01, is making major strides at the Bone Imaging Laboratory at the University of Calgary as its principal investigator. As part of the Canadian Multicentre Osteoporosis Study, he is examining issues with bone microarchitecture — specifically, how it varies across the lifespan between men and women and the effects of vitamin D on bone health. Boyd is also working with the Canadian Space Agency at NASA’s Johnson Space Center where they will measure astronauts’ bone architecture before and after six months at the International Space Station.

Anita Dusevic Oliva, BA’99, JD’02, was named Alberta Oil Magazine’s C-Suite Energy Executive Awards Chief Legal Officer of the Year in January 2015.

Dr. Tanya Beran, PhD’02, is one of the minds behind developing MEDis (Medical and Engineering Designing Intelligence). These two-foot-tall robots are designed to entertain, comfort and distract kids who are getting treatment at the Alberta Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Arindom Sen, BSc’91, MSc’98, PhD’03, was appointed the new Associate Dean, Student Professional Development, on Jan. 1, 2015. His term will run until Dec. 31, 2019. Previously, Sen served as the Associate Director (Undergraduate) for the Centre for Bioengineering Research and Education.

Shawn Graham, LLB’03, and Patrick Lindsay, BA’98, LLB’01, were named to Lexpert magazine’s 2014 Rising Stars: Leading Lawyers Under 40 list.

Kerri Howard, LLB’04, was named one of eight new partners of Davis LLP in December 2014.

Fabrizio Chiacchia, BSc’03, MBT’05, 
developed CleanPatch, a medical surface repair patch for hospital beds and stretchers that keeps them hygienic and prevents patients from developing infections. The product is now being sold in more than 300 hospitals in six countries.

Stephanie Westlund, BA’99, MA’06, published the book Field Exercises: How Veterans Are Healing Themselves through Farming and Outdoor Activities. It explores how connecting with nature is supporting military veterans as they recover from stress injuries and reintegrate into civilian life.

Natalie Panek, BSc’07, took part in The Enbridge Famous Five Speaker series in February 2015.

Michael Kwiatkowski, JD’07, was featured in the Calgary Herald’s Law Review in November, 2014. Kwiatkowski is a partner in the Litigation group at McLeod Law LLP.

Brent Else, BSc’05, MSc’08, has been awarded a grant from the Marine Environmental Observation, Prediction and Response (MEOPAR) network to install a weather station on a small island in the Northwest Passage. Else is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Geography.

Kyle Fitzgerald, BSc’09, Adil Hooda, BSc’09, Christopher Cheng, BSc’09, founded an ugly Christmas sweater store called Holiday Rejects. The three grads were featured on Dragon’s Den which enabled them to secure funding for the store. Holiday Rejects runs six retail stores across Canada.

Kelly Fitzsimmons, BCOMM’09, is one of the top athletes in the modern pentathlon in Canada. She is on the nomination list for the Pan Am Games in Toronto, taking place July 10-26, 2015.

Decades of Decadence
by Deb Cummings and Izzah Khan

The peppered steak. The lamb-based Scotch broth. The crab cakes.

Just ask cookbook author Rebecca Klemke, BA’06, to name a few of her favourite recipes in her 500-page tome, Decades of Decadence, and she’ll produce a litany faster than you can whip up her grandmother’s lemon vinaigrette.

The economics grad points to her grandmother because that’s where the belly of the book began — in her grandma’s kitchen. Trouble was, most of the 300 recipes that appear in Decades of Decadence were either locked in her granny’s head or scribbled on scraps of paper — which is precisely why Klemke decided to transcribe and categorize every recipe.

“At the time, my intention was to print off some recipes, stick them in a Duo-Tang and give them to family members,” explains the fifth-generation Calgarian, who admits food is often the binding ingredient in her clan. But then the urge to create something bigger happened. As a teenager, Klemke had worked as a line cook at Cilantro Restaurant in Calgary, so she asked chef Ken Canavan for a few of his favourites, punching up the already-rich pool of recipes with trendier, healthier fare.

Then the testing began, followed by photography and, before long, eight years had passed. Meanwhile, Klemke had graduated with a BA in economics and had become the CEO of her father’s property management company, Opel Management Ltd. Her beloved gran, Lois O’Connor (nee Burns) was in a nursing home and there were plenty of spreadsheets of recipes and photos — but still, no book.

After more to-ing and fro-ing with publishing houses, Klemke’s labour of love was published in December 2012 — just months before her grandmother died.

“I still remember putting the first copy in her lap,” says Klemke. “Within a minute she said to me, ‘This book is too heavy for me, please take it away.’”

That’s when Klemke said, “No way, this book has taken us eight and a half years to make, so you have to hold it for at least eight minutes!”

If her gran was around today, she’d be thrilled to know her homespun recipes nabbed the No. 1 slot for culinary history at last year’s Gourmand World Cookbook Awards. U

For details on where to buy Decades of Decadence, visit