North Central College - Naperville, IL

Kristina Kaufman M '08

Kristina Kaufman M ’08 is an instructor and doctoral student at Illinois State University. She recently published her first picture book for children, “I Soar,” which is available online at Barnes & Noble and Amazon. Kaufman is working on her next picture book manuscript while taking classes toward a doctorate degree in education. She is also seeking funding to support dissertation research on the partnership between businesses and secondary level education to equip graduates with 21st century skills.

Faith Evans '08

Faith Evans was named a Hometown Hero. She is stationed as a chemical officer at Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Aberdeen, MD. Evans joined the U.S. Army in 2011 and is currently a second lieutenant. After boot camp, she completed officer candidate school and chemical warfare training in Missouri. Evans holds a master’s degree from Illinois State University.

Laura Botten '08

Laura Botten is a production assistant for US 99.5 WUSN-FM, Chicago. She is responsible for imaging on the station, creative services such as copywriting and commercial voiceovers and serves as a fill-in personality on air several times per month. She has been working at US 99.5 since April 2008 and was promoted to the station’s full-time production assistant in late 2012.

Anthony Tinerella M '07

Anthony Tinerella M ’07 will take over as the next headmaster at Marmion Academy in Aurora, IL, on July 1. Tinerella began at Marmion Academy in 1990 as a physics and biology teacher. He has served as the science department chair, varsity head football coach, assistant dean of students and dean of students. In 2009 he accepted a position as principal of Guerin College Preparatory High School in River Grove, IL.

Aubrey Pauly Secrest '07

Aubrey Pauly Secrest is owner and founder of Bride Meets Wedding, Inc. which can be found at BrideMeetsWedding. com. She began the online bridal resource website in March 2012. The website is aimed at couples in the Galena/tri-state and Rockford areas looking to host destination weddings and have access to vendors and information when planning from afar. Secrest also recently launched an online bridal consignment site called, which allows women from across the country to resell or purchase gently used gowns, décor, accessories and more.

Shelley Crawford '07

Shelley Crawford performed in her first solo cabaret “Tellin’ It Like It Is” at Davenport’s Piano Bar March 11 and 18. The hour-long show featured a variety of rare musical theatre songs about life choices and self-discoveries. She was also choreographing a steam-punk hip-hop version of “The Wiz” at Downers Grove South High School and was assistant choreographer for Lincoln-Way Central High School’s production of “Anything Goes” in spring 2013.

Megan O'Connor '05

Megan O’Connor is an associate attorney at the Deratany Law Firm in Chicago. She recently coauthored “Eyes Wide Open: The Duty of Child Welfare Agencies in Illinois to Disclosure,” which was published in the Winter 2013 Trial Journal of the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association. O’Connor is a 2012 graduate of the Loyola University Chicago School of Law and was sworn in as an Illinois licensed attorney in November 2012.

Sarah Eikleberry '04

Sarah Eikleberry earned a Ph.D in health and sports studies from the University of Iowa. In fall 2013 she will begin working in the department of kinesiology at St. Ambrose University as an assistant professor. She attributes her ability to realize this goal to Jerry Gems, professor of health and physical education at North Central.

Karen Larson Graves M '03

Karen Larson Graves M ’03 is director of the Chester P. Sutton Community Center and East Central Illinois Mass Transit District. She previously served as a technology/ computer coordinator for Paris Union School District 95. The center helps senior citizens fill out government forms and assists with other services. She has taught, worked in the private sector and owned her own business. Outside of work, she operates the Save a Mutt Dog Shelter in Chrisman, IL.

Thomas Smith M '02

Thomas Smith M ’02 was named social science/world language division head at John Hersey High School in Arlington Heights, IL. Smith has taught social science courses for 15 years at John Hersey, Prairie Ridge High School in Crystal Lake, IL, and Elk Grove High School. He holds a bachelor’s degree in secondary education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from North Central and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Northeastern Illinois University.

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