Congratulations to Dr. Rao V.S.V. Vadlamudi, MSc’80, PhD’83, for his recent appointment as director of St. Peter’s Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences in Warangal, India. Dr. Vadlamudi completed his BPharm’73 and MPharm’76, from Andhra University, Visakhapatnam, before completing his degrees in Pharmacology and Toxicology from the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at UBC. He has held previous positions including reader in pharmacology, University Department of Chemical Technology (UDCT) (1984-89); professor in pharmacology, Bombay College of Pharmacy (BCP) (1989-90); visiting lecturer at UDCT/BCP (1990-2002); and director, BCP (2004-07). Dr. Vadlamudi’s career began in the ’90s initially as the principal research scientist at Hoechst Research (1990-1992) followed by head of pharmacology at the Hoechst Marion Roussel Research Center (1992-98). He was then head of pharmacology at the Nicholas Piramal Research Centre (1998-2002); VP, Discovery Biology, Suven Life Sciences (2002-04); VP and principal fellow, Nektar Therapeutics India Private Limited, Hyderabad (2006-2011); and Sr. VP, Life Sciences, at Vimta Labs Ltd, Hyderabad (Mar 2011-Oct 2011). He also serves as editor of the Indian Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences. He has authored and co-authored 25 research publications, 20 poster and oral presentations and delivered more than 50 invited lectures on various topics related to drug discovery and development, scientific writing and careers for pharmacy graduates. He was the recipient of the Fellow of the Indian Pharmaceutical Association award in 2000, Dr. B. N. Ghosh Memorial Oration Award of the Indian Pharmacological Society in 2005 and the Prof. M. L. Khorana Memorial Lecture Award 2009 of the IPA.

Even in retirement, Rika Ruebsaat, BA’81, and her husband, Jon Bartlett, BA’75, continue to keep busy with their involvement in a variety of pursuits, including the recent publication of a book, Dead Horse on the Tulameen: Settler Verse from BC’s Similkameen Valley. The book presents a unique approach to local history in that it is based on a collection of verses drawn from the pages of Similkameen Valley newspapers between the years 1900 and 1945. The verses were submitted to the paper by local residents and concern daily life in the valley over the years. The poems and songs in the book are supported by extensive historical background and archival photographs. Rika and Jon have been singing together since 1975, focusing especially on the songs of British Columbia made by settlers, loggers, miners and fishers. They have worked extensively with Phil Thomas, whose collection of folk books is housed in the Phil Thomas Collection in UBC Library’s Special Collections, and have produced four CDs of Canadian songs.

Drew Young
Drew Young

Drew Young, BA’82, received the 2011 Canadian Institute for Theatre Technology (CITT) award, which recognizes an individual’s longstanding career achievement as an educator in a technical or related discipline, while preparing students for work within the Canadian live performance industry. Drew, who graduated from UBC Theatre, helped to establish the Stagecraft and Event Technology program at Douglas College in 1987 and has been program coordinator ever since. The unique program offers a two-year diploma that prepares graduates to work in theatre, special events, film or television.

Colleen Hardwick, BA’83, is the CEO and founder of PlaceSpeak, a company that connects people’s online identities with their residential addresses so that they can voice their opinions electronically in a wide variety of forums. The company most recently hosted the 2012 Urban Futures Survey (UFS) – PlaceSpeak uses geo-verification to identify what census tract each respondent is coming from. The UFS is the third iteration of a UBC-led longitudinal data survey used to gauge how the opinions of Metro Vancouverites change over time. The first survey was spearheaded by Colleen’s father, UBC professor Walter G. Hardwick, in 1973 and the second was completed in 1990. The survey will allow communities to forecast and anticipate the needs and desires of the Lower Mainland’s 2.1 million residents.

On August 2, 2010, Gail Lin Joe, BEd’83, MEd’85, successfully passed her oral defence for her doctorate of education degree from Simon Fraser University with the doctoral dissertation entitled: Capturing the Practical Wisdom of Retired School Principals.

In May 2012, Marjorie Simmins, BA’84, received a Master’s of Arts Research (Education) from Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax. For the degree, Marjorie studied the history and current forms of memoir and included her own memoir of the past fifteen years living in the Maritimes in her thesis. Marjorie was raised in Vancouver and spent most of the 1990s working as a freelance writer and copy editor. She wrote a number of articles for Trek magazine, including her first article, “After the BA,” which was published in Trek’s predecessor, The Chronicle, in 1990. Her writings have been published in leading newspapers and numerous provincial and national magazines. Her essay, “Trips from There to Here,” a memoir published in Saturday Night magazine, won a Gold Medal at the 1994 National Magazine Awards. In 1997, Marjorie moved to Cape Breton and soon after married the Maritimes, or more correctly, married a Maritimer. She enjoys writing about the dazzling diversity of differences between Canada’s lateral coasts and embraces all things East Coast from Digby scallops to the Cape Breton Highlands. She refers to herself as a west coast woman whose heart has discovered that it has many homes. Marjorie currently teaches memoir writing in and around Halifax and is a member of the Writers Federation of Nova Scotia.

Cathy Chan (LeDuc), PhD’85, and Pat Chan, MBA’85, recently enjoyed a holiday to India and England that turned into a UBC alumni reunion. In Delhi, they enjoyed catching up with Barun Mohanty, MBA’85, and Ranjani Iyer Mohanty, MBA’85. Barun is now the managing director, International, and director, India, at the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, and Ranjani is a freelance writer and editor whose articles have appeared in publications around the world. In Dehradun, near the foothills of the Himalayas, Pat and Cathy enjoyed a wonderful traditional Indian dinner at the home of Rajeev and Suman Nangia, PhD’80. Suman, along with her daughter, Vasundhara, operate an educational and psychological consulting business. On the return journey Pat and Cathy stopped in London to visit with Jane and Kevin Rush, MBA’81. Cathy and Pat currently reside in Edmonton, where Cathy is on faculty at the University of Alberta.

Jason Farris, BSc’89, has authored and published his fourth book, Behind the Moves: NHL General Managers Tell how Winners are Built. The book is based on in-person interviews with 35 NHL GMs – collectively representing over 500 seasons of NHL GM experience – who have taken a team to the Stanley Cup final. Toronto Maple Leafs GM, Brian Burke, penned the book’s foreword.


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