Updates from 2000-09 Graduates


July 2017 — Angela Naef (B.A. ’96, Ph.D. ’00, chemistry) has been chosen as the new chairperson of the American Chamber of Commerce in Denmark. Naef is the Vice President of Global Technology & Innovation at DuPont Nutrition & Health in Copenhagen. She has lived in Denmark since 2014, when she joined DuPont in Brabrand near Aarhus as a Site Manager. She relocated to Copenhagen in 2016.


October 2017 — Steven Farmer (B.S. '94, Ph.D. '02, chemistry) recently published his first book. Strange Chemistry: The Stories Your Chemistry Teacher Wouldn't Tell You (John Wiley & Sons, July 2017) focuses on the darker, wilder side of chemistry. The book covers broad subjects that touch on everyday life, including the chemistry of poisons, illicit drugs, explosives, foods, common household products, and radiation.

October 2015 — Anne Guzzo (Ph.D., music, ’02) has been appointed composer-in-residence with the Colorado Chamber Orchestra. She is an associate professor in the University of Wyoming Department of Music. Guzzo, whose music has been performed internationally, is the founder of New Frontiers Festival of contemporary music at UW. She performs regularly as a clarinetist and teaches composition and theory. She earned her master’s degree in 20th century music from UC Santa Cruz.


Portrait photo of Jacob Smith, attorney and UC Davis alumnus

May 2017 — Attorney Jacob C. Smith, (B.A., political science, ’03) recently joined Reynolds Law, a business and estate planning firm, in Vacaville. He graduated in 2014 from University of Pacific McGeorge School of Law, where he received Witkin Legal Institute awards for business associations and legislative drafting and was inducted into the Traynor Honor Society and the Order of Barristers. He served four tours in Afghanistan with U.S. Army special operations, and received two Bronze Star medals. 

book cover with photos of Franklin Roosevelt and economist John Maynard Keynes

June 2016 — Immortal's Spring, the third novel in a Greek-mythology-based trilology by Molly Winter (M.A., linguistics, ’03), was released this month by Central Avenue Publishing. Winter writes under the pen name of Molly Ringle. The first two books were Persephone’s Orchard and Underworld’s Daughter. Winter won the grand prize in the 2010 Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest for an intentionally bad opening sentence. She lives in Seattle with her husband and sons. 


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December 2016 — Christina Bueno (Ph.D., history, ’04) wrote The Pursuit of Ruins: Archaeology, History, and the Making of Modern Mexico (University of New Mexico Press, 2016). She is an associate professor of history and Latino/Latin American studies at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago. 

October 2015 — Sallie Poggi (B.A., communication, ’04) joined the UC Davis Strategic Communications office as social media strategist. She previously worked at Fleishman-Hillard in Sacramento as a managing supervisor with a speciality in developing social and digital media strategies for global and national food, wine, agriculture and consumer products clientele. She brings 10 years of public relations experience, nine of which were as a social media specialist. 


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November 2017 — Stephen Mew (B.A., economics, ’06) recently completed 21 months serving aboard the ship MV Logos Hope, operated by a German Christian charity, to bring books and aid to people around the world. 


UC Davis alumnus and TV producer Michael Bott holding Peabody Award

May 2017 — An NBC Bay Area/KNTV series of reports on the misuse of school police officers—produced by Michael Bott (B.A., international relations, ’07)—won a 2016 Peabody Award. The award judges cited the investigative team's "tenacious efforts and hard-earned findings in uncovering a disturbing trend in student civil rights violations and for its contribution to the larger conversation about rebuilding trust between police and their communities." Watch the series, "Arrested at School." Follow Bott on Twitter at @TweetBottNBC.

July 2017Alvaro Reynoso (B.A., sociology and Chicano studies, ’07) joined the Woodland police force in June as a patrol officer. After graduating from UC Davis, he earned a master’s degree in marriage family and child therapy from Sacramento State, then worked 11 years as a Yolo County probation officer. A longtime volunteer, he tutored migrant farmworkers’ children while attending UC Davis. As a probation officer, he taught parenting classes to people whose children were on probation.

November 2015 — Angela Chang (B.A., international relations, ’07) is a human rights advocate with Amnesty International and a student in Penn State’s online master’s degree program in geographic information systems. She recently received the university’s 2014 Lt. Michael P. Murphy Award, which recognizes achievement by a geospatial intelligence graduate student. At Amnesty International, she has used geospatial intelligence methods since 2012 to monitor and document human rights abuses in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. The findings have corroborated witness testimony and helped influence U.S. policies. “At first glance for many, it might seem like we are coming from very opposite ends of the spectrum,” she said, “but at the end of the day, human rights and national security are not, and should not, be mutually exclusive.” 

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October 2015 — Reema Rajbanshi (M.A., English, ’07) has won the UC Davis Department of English Maurice Prize. The $5,000 award has been given annually since 2005 to a graduate of the creative writing program who has not yet published a major work of fiction. The award is made possible by best-selling novelist and Davis resident John Lescroart and is named for his late father. Rajbanshi won the award for her novel manuscript Sugar, Smoke, Song“This novel is a gorgeous thunderswirl of dance and music, failure and friendship,” wrote award judge Ramona Ausubel, who has published a novel and a collection of short stories. “I love how the places — India, New York, San Francisco and beyond — press out through the narrative alongside Hindu, American and family mythologies.”
 Rajbanshi’s writing has appeared in Confrontation, So to Speak, Southwest Review and Another Subcontinent. She won the 2010 So to Speak fiction contest.  She is working on a doctorate in literature from UC San Diego.


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April 2017 — Jimmy Franco (Ph.D., chemistry, ’08) is an associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Merrimack College in North Andover, Massachusetts. As assistant professor there since 2011, Franco was recently granted tenure and promoted. His research focuses on developing new treatments for tuberculosis, histoplasmosis and other diseases, and identifying engaging methods for teaching chemistry and biochemistry. Before joining Merrimack, Franco was a visiting professor at the University of Toledo in Ohio.


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December 2016 — Oxford University Press recently published a book by Willie Hiatt (Ph.D., history, ’09) — The Rarified Air of the Modern: Airplanes and Technological Modernity in the Andes.Based on his dissertation, The Rarified Air traces the development of Peruvian aviation. Hiatt is an associate professor of history at Long Island University’s Post Campus in Brookville, New York.