SAU Alumni Association

Great news - You're already a member

The minute you walk across that graduation stage receive your Ambrose diploma, you become a member of our Alumni Association – now more than 30,000 strong.

In partnership with the dedicated Alumni Office staff, the Alumni Association is here to help support and foster relationships amongst our alumni and strengthen the special bond you have with your alma mater. Their work includes welcoming new students to the university, speaking at university commencement events and distributing the coveted alumni pins, and volunteering at alumni events such as Bee Happy Hour, Bix 7 Bee Cool Tent, and Homecoming.  In 2021, they piloted their newest effort - adding Bee Stencils to Quad City driveways.

The association is guided by a group of dedicated alumni from across the decades who volunteer their time and passions to help us in our efforts to connect you with your alma mater.

Click here to check out our Alumni Apparel!

Show your pride with an SAU Yard Flag! Concrete Bee Stencil Sign-up

mark

Mark Brauweiler, President

Class of 2013, 2015

Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science
Bachelor of Science in Human Performance & Fitness
Doctorate in Physical Therapy

What is your professional background? Physical therapist for Progressive Rehabilitation Associates, LLC in Tipton, IA (based out of Iowa City, IA). Worked as a staff PT for 1-2 years, then took over as clinic manager for 2-3 years. The last 18 months at that job, I concurrently served as the compliance officer (ethics officer) for the entire company. I then moved back to Chicago suburbs and joined Edward-Elmhurst Health as a staff physical therapist; I left that job to joint a start-up private practice PT.

What is your current occupation? Staff PT at Evolve Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine in Aurora, IL.

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. Cadaver lab as an undergrad. If there were any doubts in my mind about becoming a PT, that solidified my career path as something that infinitely interested me and kept me hungry for learning.


John

John Klein, Vice-President

Class of 1989

Bachelor of Arts in Business Administation

What is your professional background? I spent my career in the information management industry. I worked in various marketing, business development, and CEO roles supporting Fortune 2000 companies and innovative customers that were enterprise content management trendsetters. From competing with Amazon in one-off custom book printing to helping construct one of the world's largest corporate intranets, our talented teams provided measurable ROI to valued clients.

What is your current occupation? I retired in 2021 as CEO of Redstone Content Solutions.

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. Being a three-time baseball team captain fostered leadership qualities such as decision-making, emotional intelligence, and accountability that I leveraged throughout my professional career.


kyle

Kyle Wehr, Treasurer

Class of 2012

Bachelor of Arts in Marketing

What is your professional background? My professional background has been focused in organizational strategy, process improvement, and product pricing/valuation. I currently lead a team of data scientists at John Deere Financial where we build predictive modelsthat value Deere equipment and integrate the predictions into business processes for more effective and efficient design making. In addition to my time at John Deere, I've been a Business Manager at Capital One Financial, an Associate Product Manager at Nationwide Insurance, and have held a variety of operational and sales/fundraising roles within smaller organizations. 

What is your current occupation? Analytics Product Owner at John Deere Financial

Share one memort about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. The St. Ambrose education experience taught me to think critically about the desired pursuits, the customer's needs attempting to be addressed, and the operational constraints involved. 


Kemper Rusteberg

Kemper Rusteburg, Secretary

Class of 2014

Bachelor of Arts in International Business

What is your professional background? I am a believer in technology and how it can impact our world for the better. I have spent the greater part of my career at Motorola Mobility. I have a strong track record of success in building and managing relationships with enterprise customers, developing and executing sales and marketing programs, and launching new products and services

What is your current occupation? Marketing Lead, Global Upsell Services, Motorola Mobility

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. I was very involved at Ambrose. One memory at SAU that impacted my career path was my involvement with the International Office. I always built my group projects with international students, eager to learn about their cultures and perspectives. Also, spending my summers on campus with the International Office helped me develop a deep understanding of different cultures, which I now use to advise my global team.


2021 Day of Giving
What's Your Corner?

Members of the Alumni Board share why they give to SAU. What's the corner of campus you support?

2022-2023 Alumni Association Board Members

The St. Ambrose Alumni Association is guided by a group of dedicated alumni from across the decades who volunteer their time and passions to help us in our efforts to connect you with your alma mater.

Ann Baker '88

Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication


What is your professional background? I graduated from St. Ambrose with a Mass Comm degree, specializing in Advertising & PR. I spent many years as a copywriter and copy editor for catalogs, but stopped working when my fourth child was born. Once the kids were all older, I began working part-time in an insurance office. My communication skills were put to good use in my office settings as well as volunteer positions.


What is your current occupation? I'm currently a client relations manager for a financial planning/insurance group, Equitable Advisors, in the Milwaukee area.


Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. I became involved with student government which forced me to meet with a variety of students, faculty, and staff. We worked together to accomplish goals and I loved it. I learned through trial and error how to articulate my opinions, to come across more confidently. Perfect experience for life in "the real world".

Mark Bernhard '77

Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice

What is your professional background? 37 years with the 7th District, Iowa Department of Corrections. I worked as a Parole Officer and Parole Supervisor the last 25 years. 

What is your current occupation? Retired Parole/Probation Supervisor

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. Classes with Dr. Moore, who lined up a summer internship with the Parole Office for me. 

Phil Cervantes '90

Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication

What is your professional background? Attorney for the law firm Cervantes and Associates in St. Louis, MO for approximately 30 years, trying lawsuits and handling claims involving personal injury, medical malpractice and workers compensation.

What is your current occupation? Attorney

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. Engaging, in-class discussions with a professor who taught Ethics and Philosophy.

Megan Cox '03

Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Marketing Communications
Bachelor of Arts in Theater

What is your professional background? After graduating St. Ambrose University with majors in Public Relations/Marketing Communication and Theater I worked for USA TODAY/Gannett Publishing. I worked as a Marketing Coordinator, Account Manager and Regional Marketing Manager. I collaborated with colleges and universities on our Collegiate Readership Program. I oversaw agreements and partnerships in the hospitality and retail segments.

What is your current occupation? I'm currently a stay at home parent and my most recent position was a Regional Marketing Manager at USA TODAY/Gannett Publishing.

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. My four years working in the SAU Theatre Department with Dr. Cory Johnson, Mike Kennedy, Dianne Dye and Kris Eitrheim gave me a fundamental understanding of collaboration, commitment and focus. They rewarded hard work and creative thinking and we saw the fruits of our efforts with successes at both regional and national theater festivals and professional opportunities. While it's not a single memory I fondly remember the long hours I spent on the stage, in the scene or costume shops and in Cory's office. I'm so grateful for all they taught me about Theater and life.

Martha Garcia-Tappa '91

Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication

What is your professional background? Bilingual Marketing /Public Relations Management, 15 years Director of Communications, 7 years Business Engagement Consultant Sate of Iowa, Publications Manager Trinity Regional Health Systems, Public Relations Writer for Modern Woodmen, previously a journalist Quad Cities Times/Dispatch Argus

What is your current occupation? Business Engagement Consultant - Iowa Workforce Development - State of Iowa

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. Dr. Rogalski's ability to remember students by name while attending SAU and years later when you see him in and around the community. He is an amazing role model that he taught me to the importance of making business and personal friendships last forever. He showed us the importance of community and giving back. He is one of the most respected and loved leader of our community. 

Roy Kempa '67

Bachelor of Arts in Economics

What is your professional background? I worked in higher education, newspapers, videotex, marketing research and financial services sectors. In my last position I was an integral part of the management team that successfully launched the Discover Card!

What is your current occupation? I took early retirement from Discover Card. Initially started the marketing research function where none existed. Succesfully managed a multi-million dollar budget and three research professionals. Later in my career, I was responsible for implementing private label gift cards on the Discover network as well as developing the Discover Card Gift Card.

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. Attending SAU was impactful in my business career; in particular, taking Speech gave me the confidence to present my thoughts and analysis to coworkers, clients as well as senior management.

 

Tina Kohn '87

Bachelor of Arts in Theology

What is your professional background? 13 years of social services - youth ministry and working with behavioral disorder kids . Then the past 23 years with State Farm. Experience in Leadership , HR , project management and a certified scrum master.

What is your current occupation? Manager

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. Playing collegiate sports - leadership and team building

Megan Leon '16 '18

Bachelor of Science in Psychology
Bachelor of Arts in Women and Gender Studies
Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

What is your professional background? I am a school based occupational therapist servicing a range of neurodiverse individuals with varying needs and disabilities in education. I also work with families and children birth to three years old through early access to improve their outcomes and skills for participation in daily living.

What is your current occupation? School occupational therapist

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. My career in a care profession was solidified by my opportunities as an undergraduate student to hear professors and guest lecturers advocate for social justice and peace. These reinforced my desire to serve others and strengthened my connection to my path as an OT.

Ty Lewis '22

Bachelor of Arts in Finances

What is your professional background? I worked in banking for two and half years and now work in a nonprofit and community development. I am a real estate investor investor and also a public speaker. 

What is your current occupation? Director of Emerging Leaders and African American Leadership Society of United Way Quad Cities

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. My most impactful Ambrose experience was getting to participate in the 2020 and 2021 National Sales Shores Challenge for he College of Business. This was the largest sales competition in the world. There were around 38 universities from all around the U.S. and about 200 students competing at this event. I was very blessed to have won the Elevator Pitch not once but twice. On top of hat, St. Ambrose placed 3rd out of 38 colleges for the competition in 2021. This not only impacted me, but put our College of Business on the map on a national level. 

Jill McNamara '92 '03 '04

Bachelor of Business Administration
Bachelor of Arts in Accounting
Master of Business Administration

What is your professional background? I started in Retail owning my own business with my husband, once we started a family I decided to take another path. I have been in the accounting world for about 20 years. Spending time in public accounting and private industry.

What is your current occupation? I currently am the Assistant Comptroller at SAU. I have been in my current position for 9 1/2 years and couldn't be happier to have come "home" to SAU. I love being on campus everyday and seeing the students enjoying SAU as much as I did as a student.

Miranda Nelp '05

Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Strategic Communication

What is your professional background? Sales

What is your current occupation? Sales Consultant for EssilorLuxottica

Share One memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. Some of my fondest memories are some of the conversations I had with my work study faculty and lunches with my professors about what I wanted to do in the future. Many of them were guiding lights, they taught me about the power of relationships, how I have the ability to make people feel comfortable by being personable and myself. 

Erin Norris '11

Bachelor of Science in Nursing
BSN-PreNursing

What is your professional background? I spent the first 7 years of my career as a nurse in the Emergency Room and have also spent time working as a nurse case manager. I currently am a telephonic triage nurse for OSF Health System.

What is your current occupation? I am a registered nurse, working as a telephonic triage nurse for OSF Healthcare.

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. My nursing instructors at SAU were phenomenal - we had the opportunity during clinicals to shadow in a variety of departments and I unexpectedly ended up shadowing in the ER during a clinical shift and loved it. That same ER where I got to shadow is the same place I got my first nursing job.

Abby Paulson '17

Bachelor of Arts in Strategic Communication

Doug Platt '16

Bachelor of Arts in Computer Network Administration and Investigation

What is your professional background? I have been working at John Deere since I graduated from SAU. My career began as an IT Analyst where I worked on building out reports for the Supply Management and Service Parts organizations and managing the data warehouses used by the Global PDP team. After that, I worked on the IT Internal Audit team where I helped conduct audits of the information systems at various Deere units around the world. During this time I was blessed with the opportunity to travel to 6 different countries as well as many other cities domestically, and learned a great deal about the ways that Deere does business around the world. The next role that I took on, and my current position, was with Deere's Cyber Security Defense Center as an Information Security Engineer. My primary responsibilities include designing and building solutions that allow our Incident Response team to detect and respond to security threats, and assisting them in responding to active cybersecurity threats as they arise.

What is your current occupation? Information Security Engineer

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. The memories from SAU that had the biggest impact on my career path are the several courses I took that involved interactive labs and exams. I remember being beyond excited with the opportunities to actually work with and configure the technologies that we were learning about. It was particularly rewarding to take a practical final exam in one of our networking courses that was dependent on the work we had been doing all semester to configure a router and switch from the ground up. The lessons that I learned while working through the many challenges from these assignments played a major role in shaping my interests and helped me center in on the type of work that I want to do in my career.

Christi Reed '91 '10

Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education
Master of Education

What is your professional background? I have been teaching elementary school right after graduating from St. Ambrose University. (32 years) I returned to Ambrose to earn my masters in teaching. I pursued and passed my National Boards of Teaching soon after. I have taken on many roles in the schools as team leaders, coaches, and served on many committees. I also have served on our local Henry County Agriculture Literature Board for over 20 years.

What is your current occupation? I teach first grade. I will retire in two years.

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. I was blessed to have so many wonderful teachers in the St. Ambrose family to pursue my career but also the teachers in the schools I worked. I was blessed to work with my student teacher, the late Beth Fox. Her husband was Jim Fox. St. Ambrose's amazing coach and AD for many years. She always told me that no matter what background a child comes from they had the right to an amazing education and the love from a loving teacher. That has stuck by me my entire career.

Katie Schroeder '02

Bachelor of Arts in Management

Master of Business Adminstration (MBA)

What is your professional background? 13 year John Deere employee where I've held positions of increasing responsibility in Marketing, Communications, Research, and Customer & Product Support. All roles have been global. Prior to Deere, I worked in Market Reseach (quantitative and qualitative) and finance (Loan Officer).

What is your curent occupation? Aftermarket Product Manager, Construction at John Deere (Moline, IL) - work with costomers, dealers, and product specialists to indentify aftermarket portfolio gaps and improvements.

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. During my undergrad, I had a professor who pushed me to obtain my Economics Minor (not really something I orginal thought about). I trusted his judgement and did. When starting at Deere, I worked side-by-side with the Economics Department in my role as a secondary researcher. I was able to build rapport quickly and fill a niche spot that others couldn't. 

Stacy L. Speidel-Holke '03 '18

Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication
Master of Organizational Leadership

What is your professional background? Early career in manufacturing and corporate services in roles building expertise in customer support, customer experience and training & development of both external partners and internal employees. I've spent the last 10 years in healthcare building expertise in leading teams in Organizational Development and Human Resources Business Partner functions, with a focus in human resources business partner operations, HR redesign and modernization, culture creation, talent development, talent strategy, change management, and employee engagement.

What is your current occupation? UnityPoint Health - Trinity QC & Muscatine: Strategic Human Resources Business Partner

Share one memory about your St. Ambrose experience that impacted your career path. I recall taking a summer internship at an organization that provided me the opportunity to be involved in the daily operations of the job I wanted someday. It was a great internship experience. However, by the end of the internship, I decided that that job and industry was not what I wanted after all. This was a pivotal moment in my learning journey and with faculty and staff's support and guidance, I was able to explore and find the best path for me.

Jennifer Walker '99

Bachelor of Science in Biology
Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry

What is your professional background? Chemistry laboratory technician, environmental consultant, indoor air quality and mold inspector, construction project manager

What is your current occupation? Construction Project Manager

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. The summer after my junior year I was awarded an internship in South Carolina in marine biology. I presented findings about accumulated toxins in fatty tissue samples. I reaffirmed my interest in how man-made pollutants affect our environment, but also realized marine biology research, or research in general, was not a long-term career aspiration.
How has St. Ambrose impacted your life? St. Ambrose was my family away from home for four years. Just like a traditional family, I care about the current and long-term success of the university. If I can offer assistance in shaping what that means, or executing our mission, I will step up and help! The Alumni Association is a perfect vehicle to keep dedicated family members (alumni) informed, engaged, and spreading family love!

Meghan Ward '10, DVM

Bachelor of Science in Biology

What is your professional background? I acquired my Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from University of Illinois in 2014 after finishing my undergraduate degree at St. Ambrose in 2010.
I have worked in mixed animal practice since graduating from veterinary school (meaning my practice scope encompasses both large animals as well as small animals). I have also had the opportunity to be the veterinarian for two different zoos as well.

What is your current occupation? I am currently a mixed animal veterinarian in northwestern illinois at Northern Illinois Veterinary Services.

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. I remember specifically taking Bio Lit with Dr. Vordtriede and after lots of debate, decided to write my final paper on swine housing (super exciting topic, I know.....). At that point in school, I had not totally decided I wanted to go on to veterinary school. The collaboration between ALL of the biology professors/departments (genetics, anatomy/physiology, microbiology, cell/molecular biology, ecology, evolution) was absolutely amazing. It really solidified my career choice and pushed me to apply for veterinary school. That's where it was apparent that "life-long learning" is a trait that we all possessed. Our drive to help be better than we were the day before, and understand things to help progress science forward is a commonality. The entire biology department helped encourage me to continue onward in my education.

Leah Hanson '14 '15

Masters in Occupational Therapy

Bachelors in Psychology

What is your professional background? I graduated from SAU with my bachelors in psychology in 2014 and then graduated from the masters of occupational therapy program at SAU in 2015. I lived and worked in Chicago from 2015-2021. At that time, I worked as an OT at the Pain Management Center at Shirley Ryan Ability Lab. I moved to Minneapolis in 2021 and now work as an OT in an adult inpatient psychiatry unit. My professional interests include advocating for healthcare access, mental health awareness in schools/workplaces, and management of chronic conditions.

What is your current occupation? I am currently working as an OT adult inpatient psychiatry unit in Minneapolis, MN. I support people experiencing acute psychiatric events. 

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. Service, campus ministry, and study abroad experiences were very formative for me during my time at SAU. My current passions for serving diverse and underserved populations was ignited by opportunities provided at SAU. 

Hayley Coker '21 '22

Doctorate in Physical Therapy

Bachelors in Exercise Science

What is your professional background? I graduated in December 2022 after completing a Doctorate of Physical Therapy at St Ambrose. Since then, I have been working as a traveling Physical Therapist. I spent 8 months working in a skilled nursing facility in Virginia and am currently working at a hospital in Ottumwa Iowa. For my next contract, I am hoping to work at an outpatient clinic in Westport, Washington. While I was in school, I served on a variety of leadership positions. During undergrad, I was the Vice President for Kinesiology Club, a member of Chemistry Club, and played on the women's volleyball team. In PT school, I was the Social Chair for the Student Physical Therapy Organization and the President of the Graduate Student Government Association

What is your current occupation? I am currently working as a traveling Physical Therapist at a community hospital in Ottumwa, Iowa.

Share one memory about your SAU experience that impacted your career path. During my time at SAU, I played on the women's volleyball team. Having the opportunity to work with the training staff during strength and conditioning sessions impacted my career choice and I discovered that I wanted a career focused on the betterment of people. I love helping people to become stronger and pain free.

Contact


Wendy Pondell, Director

Alumni Engagement Office
Alumni House: 1527 Brady St.
Mail: 518 W. Locust St.
Davenport, IA 52803
563/333-6290
alumni@sau.edu

It's Time to Connect

Are you ready to reconnect with your alma mater? The St. Ambrose University Alumni Office has so many ways to stay involved, no matter where you are in life. Become an engaged alumnus today!