Pause for applause
Mennonite College of Nursing graduate Tyler Relph ’12 is a critical care nurse and Captain in the U.S. Air Force Reserves. A member of the military Critical Care Air Transport Team, his job involves helping injured servicemembers overseas in austere conditions and with limited resources. Troops are typically injured by Improvised Explosive Devices, gunshots, and burns. Relph, who resides in Morton, works on a team that includes a physician and respiratory therapist. They typically fly to Middle Eastern countries and transport the injured by air back to Germany before they are able to return to the U.S. for long-term care.
Dr. Daniel López Jr., Ph.D. ’02, began his presidency at Chicago’s Harold Washington College (HWC) in January. He accepted the position while vice president of Student Affairs at Northeastern Illinois University and after more than 25 years in higher education. López graduated from HWC as part of his journey from a formerly undocumented, first-generation and English as a second language student. HWC enrolls approximately 12,000 students, with more than 70 percent of the student body Latinx or African American. López’s leadership roles involve serving on several boards, including the Illinois Latino Council on Higher Education, and Diversifying Faculty in Illinois.
Driven by purpose
Jim Graham ’83 went from campus to working for Ford Motor Company. Throughout more than 30 years with the firm, he has met with U.S. presidents and celebrities; as well as traveled with Henry Ford’s great grandson, Edsel Ford. Graham is global manager of Ford Driving Skills for Life, which is one of the company’s marquee programs. It builds partnerships in every state to advance safe teen driving. Free training is provided to the newly licensed drivers. Graham was recognized in 2019 by the Governors Highway Safety Association for having made a tremendous impact in improving highway safety.
The Illinois Art Education Association chose Kristen Lajeunesse-Roach ’04 as the 2019 Art Educator of the Year. A graduate of the Wonsook Kim College of Fine Arts, she earned a master’s degree in art education at Boston University. She is an art and design educator at Lake Zurich High School, where she teaches AP and honors studio art, ceramics, sculpture, and photography classes. Lajeunesse-Roach teaches creativity as a core skill. Her own work has been showcased in various shows, including the Chicagoland Artist Exhibition. Married and mom to two sons, she is co-writing a future-forward learning experience grounded in design thinking.