Class Notes

October 2020

The 1950s

James Nugent ’56 is proud of his extended family and its ND connections. Son Jim ’82 is the father of James ’14 and Patrick ’16; son Scott is the father of Charles ’16 and Ben ’19; Michele Nugent Severino is the mother of Christopher who attended ND for three years. We hope to see a great-grandson sometime in the future.   

Ron Breault ‘58 recently published Voyaging with Marionette (Whaler Books 2020), an insightful and personal story of his 25-year journey with Marionette, a Dolphin 24 sailboat that he restored, sailed, and raced with pride. See more at Ron’s website

The 1960s

Albert Ruggiero ’66 recently collated and published a collection of short reflective writings of his late wife Carol. Entitled Pearls from Carol, the book is available from Balboa Press




1967 classmates Tom Cretella, Bob Greco, and Dennis Bowler recently took to the hills. According to Dennis’ Facebook post: ‘Some people say life is about the numbers, here are some fairly relevant ones: Date 10/1/2020, 3 members of the NDWH class of 1967, Tom Cretella, Bob Greco and yours truly, all three 70 years of age reached the 4,320 foot summit of  Mt. Osceola in the White Mountains, 3.5 hours up, 3 hours down. All three live to tell the tale!’

James Griffin ’67 signed a contract with Dusty Saddle Publishing to write five new novels over the next two years. The books will introduce a new character, Texas Ranger Luke Caldwell. The first one in the series, Ride for Justice-Ride for Revenge, will be released later this year.  

Paul Jakubson ’67 retired as the Chief of Police for the Town of Madison in 2009 after a 35 year career.  Paul and his wife Judith continue to live in Clinton, CT where he owns and operates a small company called MI BRI Downrange, LLC, specializing in firearms valuation and sales.

Joseph Slezak ’69 is currently a semi-retired business organizational training and development consultant and owner of The STEM Group (Strategic Training and Enterprise Management). In addition, he is a volunteer Solar System Ambassador appointed by NASA-JPL to conduct free public workshops that explain the function and purpose of NASA space exploration projects and activities. He does this through his own public education company, also called The STEM Group (Space Technology Exploration Mission) where he works with community groups, students, libraries, and other organizations to provide training and educational resources for teachers and student STEM education groups. He explains how current space technology is contributing to the improvement of society and promotes student interest in the pursuit of the study of the STEM disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics to secure a future career.

The 1970s

Antonio Gianelli, PA-C, ‘70  is an associate professor at Western Michigan University and a clinical instructor at Michigan State University College of Medicine, Department of Medical Specialties. He is also a Distinguished Fellow in the American Academy of Physician Assistants and President of the Society of Physician Assistants in Rheumatology. 

Michael Puglia ‘71 and his wife Deborah and family celebrated the baptism of  Mason Jeremy Gaudio, son of Andrew Gaudio and Elyse Puglia Gaudio (SHA '05) at the Church of the Resurrection in Wallingford. Also pictured are Godfather Mike Puglia '01 and Godmother Allison Generoso (SHA '05). Mason's great-uncle is Pat Puglia ‘78

Hal Card ‘72 has been hiking the 46 high peaks of the Adirondacks with his daughter, Anna. This photo was taken at the top of Seward Mountain, summit #40! Hal is proudly wearing an ND tee shirt for this photo-op. 

William Clifford ’72 recently retired after a 43-year career in education; he left Brooklyn, NY, upon retirement and moved to Florida.  

Joseph Fusco ’72 is a proud grandparent of nine grandchildren! He has published another collection of humorous poems and essays that is available on Amazon Books entitled Hmm…That’s Different.  

George Platt ‘72 reported that Harty Press, where he worked since 1970, closed shop in May impacted by Covid-19 fallout. Harty Press was in operation for 120 years; George held the position of president of the corporation when it closed. He has relocated to GHP Media in West Haven. 

Philip Brencher ’73, (second from right) a faculty member at New Haven’s Sound School, assisted Don Martone ’87 (far right) and his Marine Biology Class on a field trip to Long Island Sound. Utilizing a device called the Virtue, the students are investigating biodiversity in the intertidal zone and the succession of life from biofouling, to phytoplankton, to zooplankton, to bryozoans, to invertebrates, and all other life forms that appear in chronological order.  

The 1980s

Dominic Amore ‘80 joined the Hartford Courant in 1988. He writes a weekly column and covers UConn men’s athletic teams. The National Sports Media Association has named him Connecticut Sportswriter of the Year 5 times. A lifelong Connecticut resident, he is an adjunct professor at SCSU and since 2019 at Iona College. His book, A Franchise on the Rise: The first 20 years of the New York Yankees hit shelves in 2018. 

John Forcinelli ’82 recently interviewed Dom Amore ’80 on his podcast Have-A-Little. John resides in Portland, Tennessee, where he works as a security guard and is active in the music scene.   

John Griffin ’82 is semi-retired after a 31 year career as a Forensic Scientist and Regional Laboratory Director with the Virginia Department of Forensic. He is now in Arizona teaching Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics in a vocational healthcare institute. 

Tom Norton ‘82 and his son Liam (Amity ‘16) received degrees from SCSU on the same day. Tom was awarded his Sixth Year Diploma in Educational Leadership; Liam received his BS cum laude in History with a minor in Secondary Education. 

Jay Caporale ‘83 started a new position in higher education in September. He is Special Assistant to the Provost at Johnson and Wales University, Providence, RI. 

Wayne Travers ’83 joined Ernst & Young, LLP in February 2020 as an associate director, overseeing public relations for EY’s Assurance and Strategy and Transactions businesses. 

Rick Burdick ’87 credits his ND academic and athletic experiences for the success he has found in his 30-year career in the investment industry. He is currently the Regional Vice President for Catalyst Funds, Tampa, FL.   

Robert Moran ’88 recently received his State of Connecticut Real Estate License. 

The 1990s 

Joe Tantalo ’93 and AraBella Fischer proudly announce the birth of their first-born child, Teodoro Burr Fischer-Tantalo (b. May 26, 2020). In addition to adjusting to parenthood, Joe is developing the musical adaptation of Forrest Gump (based on the novel by Winston Groom), with music and lyrics from the composers of the 2007 Academy Award winning movie and Broadway musical, Once

The 2000s

Jung Yeul (John) Cha ’01 is teaching English at Chungdam Learning in Seoul, South Korea. John is a graduate of Florida State University.  

David Mayer ’03 was promoted to Geographer at the U.S. Geological Survey's Astrogeology Science Center in March 2020. He is a member of a seven-person team at USGS that created the digital maps that will guide NASA's next Mars Rover, Perseverance, to a safe landing spot on Mars.

Craig McDonough ’06 and his wife Emily proudly announce the birth of their daughter on April 18, 2020. 

Joseph Canelli ’06 and his wife Ariana welcomed the birth of Noah Alessandro Canelli of May 28, 2020.

John Franco ’07 was posted to Fort Hood, TX in 2019 from his previous duty station at Camp Carroll, South Korea.

The 2010s

Christopher Daniel ’10 is a 2017 graduate of Roger Williams University School of Law. He is in private practice with Martin Clearwater & Bell, LLP, defending medical professionals and hospitals facing medical malpractice claims throughout the State of New York. He is married to Kayla DeLucia of Cheshire and currently resides in New Canaan, CT. 

Brandon Gomez ’10 was recently featured on a list of 41 LGBTQ Latinx role models and community leaders - announced by the non-profit Honor 41. CT Latino News ran this story with Brandon’s video, click here to view

Matthew Doyle ’13 is a fashion model working out of Miami. His clients include Saks 5th, Neiman Marcus, and Perry Ellis. 

Anthony Richardson ‘15 is pursuing his Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the University of New Haven where he also serves in a graduate school outreach program titled UND Go-Getter. 

David Wajtowicz ’15 is starting his second year in the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at the University of Hartford.  

Matthew Jacques ’15 recently began work as an Account Associate at Whittlesey, Hamden, CT.  

Kyle Taylor-Gaskin ’16 is serving with the United States Army. He is currently in basic training as a cavalry scout. 

Kyle Torres ’16 is employed as an advisor at Wells Fargo in Manhattan. 

Kevin Clancy ’16 is a first-year law student at Marquette Law School.

Lucas Audie ’17 is the youngest Warehouse Supervisor in the Northeast Region for Coca-Cola North America. His work involves planning drink donations to food banks across the United States. He is pleased to have an ND alum Diego Garcia '91 as his co-worker.

Ernie Santiago III ’18 started his clinical nursing assignment at St. Vincent Hospital. Ernie is in the nursing degree program at Quinnipiac University.




Colton Varholak ’19 recently participated in the Closer to Free Ride in honor of his mother who has been battling breast cancer for over 7 years. Colton raised $3,200 for Smilow Cancer Hospital with his 107-mile ride. 

Warren Bailey Murphy ‘19 took the title in a recent professional point fighting promotion sponsored by Pro Point, according to a recent article in Black Belt magazine. Bailey and his opponent Ryan George won accolades for ‘Fight of the Night,’ and Bailey took the ‘Technique of the Night’ Award. The article concluded,  ‘Murphy used Pro Point's first event as an opportunity to continue making his case as one of the top fighters on the planet.’