Dean's Advancement Council
The Caine College of the Arts Advancement Council assists the CCA Advancement Officer in fulfilling development goals for the college, its programs, and its special projects and serve at the invitation of the Dean. They are members of the broader community and advocates of the arts. They have also established an endowed scholarship for CCA students. Current members of the CCA Advancement Council are:
Ned Weinshenker is president of Churchill Oaks Consulting, a company which provides management, technical consulting, and Board of Director services to a range of clients in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, diagnostics, and chemical and high tech industries. He is also Founder & Advisory Board Chair of the Artists’ Gallery of Cache Valley. He continues to serve as an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Chemistry/Biochemistry at USU.
Prior to his retirement, Ned was Vice President for Strategic Ventures and Economic Development at Utah State University.
Dr. Weinshenker received a B.Sc. at the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn, a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and completed post-doctorate work at Harvard University under Nobel Laureate E.J. Corey.
Ned and his wife, Gail, have three children.
A native of San Diego, Karla Axtell has had a love for music all her life. She started piano at age 8 and has been accompanying choirs and soloists since 5th grade. She began her undergraduate studies at BYU and then continued her studies at USU where she received her bachelor of music degree in piano. She taught piano to many memorable students for over thirty years. Karla has been an accompanist for the Cache Children’s Cantate Choir and loved all of the singers, especially her daughters who participated in the choir. She has served in her community as an accompanist for numerous events and soloists. She is currently a rehearsal accompanist for the American Festival Chorus under the direction of Craig Jessop.
As well as the piano, Karla has been studying the organ for many years. She has performed in the Logan Tabernacle numerous times at the piano and organ as part of the Tabernacle Noon Concert Series. Karla has produced Classical Piano CD’s and also two volumes of hymn arrangements with Jay Richards entitled, Hymns of Faith, Volumes I and II.
As a supporter of USU, Karla has donated to the Wasserman Festival, to Piano scholarships for under-graduate and graduate students, and to KUSU-Utah Public Radio for their Classical Radio and diverse programming.
In the past, Karla served on the Eccles Ice Arena Board and remains on the Board of Trustees. Karla has also served on the Cache Children’s Choir Executive Board and most recently the Caine College of the Arts Advancement Council.
Karla and her husband, Bruce, live in Hyde Park. They have six daughters, two sons, and 18 grandchildren. She enjoys going to the Utah Symphony, reading, walking, skiing, traveling, and her hobby farm of rabbits, chickens, and alpacas.
David Coppin is a retired physician who practiced for 36 years, 27 of which were in Logan, Utah. He graduated with high honors in 1966 with a BS from Utah State University and went on to the University of Utah to receive his medical degree in 1970. He served his residency at the Madigan Army Medical Center from 1970-1974. From 1993 to 2003, he was the owner of Coppin Hallmark Shops.
David was born and raised in Utah and in 1966 married his wife, Kathy. He is the father of 4 married children who are all USU graduates, and is the proud grandfather of 24 grandchildren.
David has a lifelong interest and involvement in classical music. He is mostly self-taught, but did receive a few lessons in piano, violin, organ, and voice. He collects and compares recorded musical performances and boasts a collection of more than 4000 recordings.
David and Kathy have attend hundreds of opera, chamber music, orchestral, and choral performances all over the world and have season subscriptions dating back more than 50 years. His wife shares his interest in music and she is a talented singer and pianist. They love to travel and incorporate their interest in music and history into trips to many countries, especially Europe.
In addition to his rich musical background, David is very involved with genealogical research with a special emphasis on Cornwall and the Netherlands. He has written articles on Cornish research and has ongoing participation as the online parish clerk for two parishes there. He is also part of a Cornish organization that is involved in the preservation and transcribing of old records to aid others with their research, and provides volunteer online assistance to people around the world who are seeking their Cornish roots.
He was named the Outstanding Medical Intern, and Outstanding Graduating OB-GYN Resident, and received the Meritorious Service Medal in the US Army. He served an LDS mission in the Netherlands and Belgium, was a Lt. Colonel in the US Army, and was the Chief of OB-GYN and Surgical Services at the Raymond W. Bliss Army Hospital.
David served on the board of directors and was the corporate vice president for Logan's Budge Clinic, as well as serving on the board of trustees and as president of the medical staff for Logan Regional Hospital. He was on the board of directors, physicians division, for Intermountain Health Care, based out of Salt Lake City. He also served as a practice accreditation reviewer for the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine. He is a member of the board of directors of Sunshine Terrace Foundation.
David and his wife, Kathy, live in Logan, Utah.
Ronald C. Gunnell founded The BroadStreet Group LLC, an international consulting firm in Salt Lake City, which specializes in international commerce, commercial real estate, and mentoring.
Ron currently serves on a number of boards, including the Hale Center Theatre, the University of Utah School of Music, founding trustee for Operation Kids, the President’s National Advisory Board at Utah Valley University, the National Advisory Board Best of State, the Board of Directors for Mentors International, a board member for Rising Star Outreach, National Advisory Council, Caine College of the Arts Dean’s Advancement Council at Utah State University, and founding member of the BYU Marriott School of Management.
He was accepted into the Mormon Tabernacle Choir as a singer in 1996 and in 2001 he was called and set apart as Assistant to the President of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Among his many assignments, he is responsible for securing, negotiating and hosting guest artists and celebrities who perform with the Choir.
Ron graduated from Brigham Young University in 1978 with a degree in public relations and a minor in psychology. He is married to Kaye Ashby and has three daughters, one son-in-law, and a granddaughter.
Mary Heers worked as a creative arts instructor at USU for six years and prior to that worked as the director of plays and musicals for Preston High School. She was the coach of Preston’s Academic Decathlon team (the team won two state championships), as well as the drama teacher. She is currently retired and volunteers as a tour guide at the National History Museum of Utah in Salt Lake City, and as an usher at the symphony, opera, and Pioneer Theater in Salt Lake City.
Mary received her BA from Stanford University, her MA from Middlebury College, and a BFA and her teaching credentials at USU. She was awarded the Key to the City of Preston and was named the Friend of HASS for 2008.
Mary also had a cameo in the 2004 hit movie, Napoleon Dynamite.
Nina Jorgensen Hubbard was born and raised in Norway and lived in Geneva, Switzerland, through her teenage years. She is fluent in both Norwegian and French. She received an International Baccalaureate from Ecole Internationale in Geneva, Switzerland, in 1985, a BA (Magna Cum Laude) from Smith College in 1988, and her medical degree from Dartmouth Medical School in 1993. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and the Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society. She served her pediatric residency at the University of Utah/Primary Children's Hospital from 1993-1996. She has been the medical director at Avalon Hills Residential Eating Disorder Center since 2013 and is currently professionally working as a pediatrician for Primary Care Pediatrics.
She is the mother of four children, ages 10-18, all of whom are heavily involved in music and sports. She sings with her husband, Kelly, in the American Festival Chorus. She enjoys skiing, running, knitting, traveling, cooking, music, and political philosophy. She also played the flute, including a senior recital, in college.
She served an LDS church mission to Seattle, Washington, from 1988 to 1989 and served as chair for the Pediatric Committee for Logan Regional Hospital from 2006-2008. She taught a development class and was a physician mentor for medical students while serving as the Senior Associate Consultant for the Department of Community Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine at the Mayo Clinic from 1997 to 2000. She also mentors USU students interested in pursuing medical degrees.
Nina and her husband, Kelly, live in Logan, Utah.
Janet grew up in Cache Valley (Hyde Park) and graduated from Sky View High School. Following high school she graduated from LDS Business College. She then returned to Logan and worked in the President's Office at Utah State for five years. She married Ron Jibson and following his engineering graduation from USU, they moved to North Salt Lake. They have been blessed with three sons, their wives, and nine wonderful grandchildren they adore.
Janet has loved being a homemaker and volunteering in her church and community activities, as well as those associated with Ron's position as CEO of Questar Corporation. She is involved with Women's Philanthropic Network (WPN) and the United Way Toqueville Society, and is a member of the Old Main Society at USU.
Janet enjoys golfing, reading, traveling, and spending time with her family and friends.
Active with several community organizations, Carol Laub is a resident of Cache Valley. Currently serving on the Logan Schools Foundation Board and the Utah Fast Pass Board, Carol splits her time between her fmaily and her work. She has also helped with fundraising for political campaigns/initiatives and charitable organizations. Her experience includes working for Mitt Romney, Gary Herbert, and Utah Fast Pass. Previous community service includes working as a board member for the Logan Foundation for the Arts.
Carol is married to Jim Laub, the owner of Cache Valley Electric, and they are both very generous donors to the University and the college. Carol devotes much of her time to her husband, Jim, and their two sons, Mark and Eric. She is a creative individual and has a unique talent for interior design and landscaping. She loves to cook and travel and especially enjoys her time in their other home in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Julie Ann Brammer McLellan was born in Odessa, Texas, where she lived until her senior year in high school, when she joined Up With People and traveled the world. She graduated from Texas A&M with a business degree, but ended up teaching computer education to K-5 students in the Dallas area—a position that brought her great joy. She moved on to district technology administration, where she stayed until 2002.
She and Mark McLellan, USU’s VP for Research and Dean of the School of Graduate Studies, married in 2002, bringing 6 wonderful young adults together that have blessed them with many adventures. Their three girls and three boys have all become successful in their own different endeavors.
Julie and Mark now have 2 daughter-in-laws and a son-in-law, and soon will add their 7th grandchild.
Julie is an avid gardener—not a Master Gardener in Utah yet—but soon hopes to be. She loves to quilt, travel, cook, read, and spend time outdoors with her husband and their 2 dogs.
MerLynn Pitcher, chair
MerLynn Pitcher was affiliated with Alpha Chi Omega sorority, serving as president before her graduation in 1963 with a major in History and minor in Physical Education. Subsequently, she taught school at South Cache Junior High School and Preston Junior High School. MerLynn, originally from Brigham City, has continued to be involved with Alpha Chi Omega on a national basis, and has served as a member of the House Corporation Board at USU. MerLynn is active in the Bountiful area, where she lives. She began working for the Bountiful City Recreation Department in 1969 and has worked as a Water Fitness Program Director. As her children were growing up, MerLynn was also involved with PTA in several capactities and was President of Mueller Park Junior High School PTA.
MerLynn is the mother of four children and is married to Jed Pitcher, who served on the Utah State Board of Regents.
Professionally, she was the Acting Alumni Director at USU and Historical Guide in Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia. She was president of the USU Alumni Association and served three terms as a member of the USU Board of Trustees.
Melanie was a member of the Cache Performances Board, Chair and Member of the Utah Festival Opera Board, committee member of the Sunshine Terrace Foundation Board, and committee member for the Manon Caine Russell Kathryn Caine Wanlass Performance Hall seat campaign.
Melanie is married to A. Spencer Raymond and is the mother of seven children—six sons and one daughter.
Manon Ellen Caine was the third child born to George B and Marie Eccles Caine in Logan, Utah on May 23, 1931 and grew up in their home at the bottom of Old Main Hill.
Family ties to Utah State go back to the University's founding. Her grandfather, John T. Caine, was on the first faculty, and her father was a professor and head of the dairy department at Utah State Agricultural College (USAC) for 45 years. Her mother studied art at the Chicago Art Institute, the New York Arts Students League, and also attended USAC. Both her parents were long-time patrons of the arts passing this appreciation onto the children.
After graduation from Logan High, Manon entered college at USAC graduating with a BS degree in English in 1953. While at Utah State, she was active in theatre and music as well as being a member of the Sponsor Corps, Pan Hellenic Council, Modern Dance Club, and president of Chi Omega Sorority. She then went on to earn her MA degree in Education from Stanford University.
Manon met her husband Dan when he transferred to Utah State from the University of Arizona, and after Dan's Army commitment and Manon's graduate school they were married in 1956. The next two years the lived in New York City while Dan earned an MBA degree from New York University and Manon worked for the American Field Service.
Following school, they moved back to Utah, living in Brigham City, where Dan was employed by Thiokol Corporation. The next years were devoted to raising their three children: Marie, Daniel, and David, all of whom attended Utah State, as well as their future spouses. During this time, Manon's activities included the local Red Cross board, the League of Women Voters, Civic Improvement Club, Newcomers Club, and Thiokol Community Choir.
In 1981, in honor of her mother, Marie Eccles Caine, Manon and her sister, Kathryn Caine Wanlass, established the Marie Eccles Caine Charitable Foundation. The Foundation supports many scholarships and programs at USU, as well as numerous community arts programs in northern Utah. The Foundation split in 2009, and the Marie Eccles Caine Foundation – Russell Family, continues the tradition of supporting the arts at USU and the northern Utah community. Dan and Manon support numerous programs in the college, including the Caine Scholars for Excellence and Caine Ensembles Scholarship programs, USU’s resident string quartet, the Caine College of the Arts Visiting Artists and Scholars Program, in addition to many other contributions to CCA and USU.
Manon and her sister, Kathryn, donated funding to create a world class performance hall on the Utah State University campus. In 2006, the Manon Caine Russell Kathryn Caine Wanlass Performance Hall opened its doors to the public. This performance hall has enriched the community of Cache Valley and helped to bring the arts of Utah State University into a national spotlight.
Manon has been very active in the community, serving on many boards and committees. She is a member of AC Woman's Club and Old Main Society.
Michele Watterson received her BS degree, majoring in history with a physical education minor and a teaching certificate for secondary education from Utah State University.
She has served on the board for the Utah Festival Opera, the American West Heritage Center, and as the PTA President for River Heights Elementary and the Cache County School District. She is currently on the Food Pantry Board.
Michele is married to Scott Watterson, who is the CEO of Icon Health of Fitness. She is the mother of five children, three of whom graduated from USU, one graduated from BYU, and one is currently at SVU. She has 12 grandchildren.
Michele and her husband, Scott, live in Logan, Utah.