Summer 2021 alumni updates
Readers of CMU's The Blazer magazine often say they flip right to the Alumni News section before reading anything else.
Unfortunately, the past several issues of The Blazer were not able to include alumni news. Below is a compilation of news from a few of our alumni (including the most adorable baby photos).
Leonard Enns (CMBC '69), Waterloo, ON, composed This Thirsty Land, which won the award for outstanding choral composition at the 2020 National Choral Awards. The CMU Festival Chorus performed this work with the Mennonite Community Orchestra back in 2019.
Allison Pauls (CMU '02), San Lorenzo, Paraguay, won the award for outstanding thesis or dissertation, for her doctoral dissertation, "Choral Arrangements of Nueva Cancio Chilena: Exploring Socially Committed Song in the Choral Context."
MaryLou Driedger (CMBC 1971-73), Winnipeg, MB, published her first middle-grade novel in May 2021. Lost on the Prairie follows a young boy who gets separated from his family on their immigration journey from Kansas to Saskatchewan in 1907 and goes on a big adventure to reunite with them. It's based on a true family story that happened to her grandfather, Peter M. Schmidt. MaryLou is a retired teacher and has written for many publications, including the Winnipeg Free Press and The Carillon in Steinbach.
Sandra Nickel (CMBC '84), Chexbres, Switzerland, published her first two picture books during the pandemic: Nacho's Nachos: The Story Behind the World's Favorite Snack in August 2020 and The Stuff Between the Stars: How Vera Rubin Discovered Most of the Universe in March 2021. Her work has won multiple awards and more books are on the way, including one coming this fall. Before becoming a children's book author, Sandra worked in many fields, including as an editor and lawyer. She lived in New York City, Moscow, and Paris before settling in Switzerland.
Darren Pries-Klassen (CMBC '88), St. Catharines, ON, received the 'Friend of the Canadian Association of Gift Planners' Award from the organization in May 2021, a distinction only 50 people have received since 1993. Darren is the CEO of Abundance Canada, a donor-advised, faith-based public foundation. The award honours those who have made significant contributions to the advancement of strategic charitable giving in Canada.
Dustin Wiebe (CMU '04), Winnipeg, MB, recently accepted a prestigious Luce postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, Davis to pursue research on music, missions, tourism, and the church in Bali, Indonesia. He is also a faculty fellow in CMU's School of Music and president of the Religion, Music, and Sound Section of the Society for Ethnomusicology. Dustin holds a Phd in ethnomusicology from Wesleyan University.
Deanna Zantingh (CMU '13), Smithville, ON, was awarded the prestigious Joseph-Armand Bombardier Scholarship, a Canada Graduate Scholarship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. The scholarship will support her conjoint PhD in Theology at the University of Toronto and the University of St. Michael's College, which she is beginning this fall. Her doctoral research will bring together the fields of suicide prevention research, Indigenous studies, theology, and spirituality, and will animate the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's calls to action around religious diversity and respect. Deanna has also been co-directing summer camp in Mishkeegogamang First Nation in Ontario for over a decade, through iEmergence Inc.
Rebecca Klassen-Wiebe (CMU '15), Montreal, QC, was appointed pianist-in-residence for the 2021-22 season of the Atelier Lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal, a leading artist residency program for Canadian opera singers and pianist opera coaches. Through masterclasses and professional work experience, she will further her training in coaching singers and helping lead opera rehearsals from the piano. Rebecca holds a Master of Music in Collaborative Piano Performance and a Graduate Diploma in Performance, both from McGill University.
Jana Klassen (CMU '20), Saskatoon, SK, was one of 15 Manitobans to be accepted into the Western College of Veterinary Medicine in Saskatoon and began the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program in the fall of 2020. Before this, she spent the summer fighting wildfires as a fire ranger for the Government of Manitoba.
Lara Friesen (Klippenstein, CMU '16) and Drew Friesen, Winnipeg, MB, September 26, 2020
Josh Ewert (CMU '12, CMU staff) and Rhema Ewert (Prathipati), Winnipeg, MB, November 11, 2020
Hannah Burkholder-Wenger (Burkholder, CMU '13) and Andrew Burkholder-Wenger (Wenger, CMU staff), Winnipeg, MB, December 27, 2020
Christina Schellenberg (CMU '05) and Douglas Ramsay, Vancouver, BC, April 10, 2021
Samantha Fehr (Klassen, CMU '19) and Tyson Fehr, Altona, MB, June 12, 2021
Janelle Braun (Hume, CMU '09, former CMU staff) and Andrew Braun, Winnipeg, MB, a son, Callan Isaac Braun, January 30, 2021 [ photo ]
Olivia Wiebe (CMU '16) and Owen Baerg (OT '15, CMU '18), Winnipeg, MB, a son, Ezekiel Beckham Wiebe Baerg, February 9, 2021 [ photo ]
Brent Enns Durksen (Durksen, CMU '04) and Kari Enns Durksen (Enns, CMU '04), Calgary, AB, a daughter, Lumi Jeffrey Rose Enns Durksen, February 11, 2021 [ photo ]
Kenny Wollmann (CMU '18) and Sheri Wollmann, MacGregor, MB, a daughter, Olivia Lenora Polly Wollmann, February 18, 2021 [ photo ]
Peter J. Epp (CMU '17, former CMU staff) and Shanda Hochstetler, Albany, Oregon, a daughter, Sophia Lucille Hochstetler Epp, February 23, 2021 [ photo ]
Jennifer Regehr (Dijk, CMU '11, former CMU staff) and Sean Regehr, Chilliwack, BC, a daughter, Maria Lynette Regehr, March 11, 2021 [ photo ]
Daniel Rempel (CMU '19) and Emily Rempel, Winnipeg, MB, a son, Henry William Rempel, April 2, 2021
Rachael Bennett Friesen (Friesen, CMU '15) and Cris Bennett, Winnipeg, MB, a daughter, Gemma Mae Bennett Friesen, April 26, 2021 [ photo ]
Shelby Nickel (CMU '12) and Tracey Nickel (Krahn, CMU '12), Winnipeg, MB, a son, Jesse Irving Nickel, May 29, 2021 [ photo ]
Katie Epp (Konrad, MBBC 1946-49), Winnipeg, MB, December 14, 2020
Linda Jantz (MBBC '49), St. Catharines, ON, April 5, 2020
Peter Krahn (CMBC '49), Niverville, MB, January 17, 2021
Leo Driedger (CMBC '53), Winnipeg, MB, December 28, 2020
John H. Neufeld (CMBC '56), Winnipeg, MB, January 11, 2021
Hildegarde Regier (Neufeld, CMBC '56), Kitchener, ON, March 13, 2021
John Robert "Bob" Baergen (CMBC '57), Winnipeg, MB, February 6, 2021
Margaret Dyck (CMBC 1957-58), Chilliwack, BC, January 15, 2021
Rudi Engbrcht (CMBC '59), Winnipeg, MB, May 2, 2021
Ferdinand Pauls (MBBC 1959-60), Winnipeg, MB, March 21, 2021
John Doerksen (MBBC '60), Abbotsford, BC, January 13, 2021
Siegfried Epp (MBBC '61), Winnipeg, MB, December 11, 2020
Menno Wiebe (CMBC '61), Winnipeg, MB, January 5, 2021
Margaret Labun (Klassen, MBBC '62), Winnipeg, MB, June 15, 2021
Henry Bergen (MBBC '63), Winnipeg, MB, February 20, 2021
Ashleigh Dueck (Hoffman, School of Discipleship '03), Steinbach, MB, January 12, 2021
Walter Neufeld (CMU '05), Fernheim Colony, Paraguay, April 2, 2021
Stay in touch
Alumni are invited to submit recent news—marriage, job change, addition of a child, award, promotion, graduate school, retirement, and so on—to the Alumni Relations Office.
Online: Information Update Form
Mail: 500 Shaftesbury Blvd., Winnipeg, MB R3P 2N2
Please model your information after the current listings above, beginning with name, graduation year, city, and province or state.