Go to unit's home.

Home > News and Events > Lab Happenings

News about Staff and Students

May 2017
Gary Williams celebrated his 25th anniversary at the University of Minnesota. Thanks to Gary for all his contributions to the VHL as well as associated institutes at the U!

May 2017
Former PhD graduate student Maneesh Shrivastav was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award and Service Always Matters (SAM) Award from his high school in Illinois. While there, Maneesh joined current high school students for a variety of activities including: teaching cardiac anatomy (hands on demo and Atlas of Human Cardiac Anatomy), doing diabetes monitoring, launching a weather balloon, and going on an ecology field trip.

September 2016
CONGRATULATIONS to former graduate student, Alex Hill (PhD, 2003), for his induction as an IEM Fellow at the 2016 IEM Conference and Retreat on Monday, September 26th!

December 2015
CONGRATULATIONS to former PhD student Steve Howard (PhD, 2013) and his wife Betsy, as they added a healthy baby girl to their family! Evelyn Marie Howard was born on Saturday, Dec. 12th at 7lb, 7oz and 20.5" long (with a full head of hair).

August 2015
Alex Hill (PhD, 2003) was recognized as a 2015 Bakken Fellow for his achivements and key contributions to Medtronic. Congratulations Alex!

June 2015
CONGRATULATIONS to Stephen Quallich who started his new job at Medtronic in June as a Senior Reliability Engineer.

CONGRATULATIONS to Brian Howard who accepted a position at Medtronic and will be starting soon: Senior Biomedical Engineer in the AF group!!

CONGRATULATIONS to Paul Iaizzo on his 25th service anniversary at the University of Minnesota (7/1)!!

April 2014
Ryan Goff (PhD, 2014) accepted a Senior Engineering position with Endologix in Irvine CA. Congrats Ryan!!

Feburary 2014
Jason Quill (PhD, 2009) and Leah welcomed new baby girl, Piper Lauren, into their growing family. After making a frantic drive to the hospital in a snowstorm, little Piper was born on Friday, February 21st at 2:21pm (6 lbs, 13 oz, 21" long). All are happy and healthy! Congratulations to the entire Quill family!!

January 2014
Paul Iaizzo and his wife, Marge, traveled to the Big Island in Hawaii in January to celebrate Dr. Earl Bakken's 90th birthday. Not only did they enjoy a wonderful birthday dinner, but they also had the opportunity to visit Earl at his home for more than 4 hours.

October 2013
Melissa and Chris Rolfes (PhD, 2013) had a baby girl, Annaliese Elizabeth (Anna), on October 11, 2013. All are healthy and doing well. Congrats to the Rolfes family!

September 2013
On September 17th, Dr. Paul Iaizzo hosted a tour for several delegates from the Chicago International Trade Commissioners' Association (CITCA) in conjunction with Governor Dayton's office.

August 2013
Julianne Spencer accepted the position Senior Reliability Engineer-Post Market Quality for the CRDM Division of Medtronic, Inc. She will start her new position on August 20th.

July 2013
Eric Richardson (PhD, 2009) accepted a Faculty position in Biomedical Engineering at Rice University in Houston, Texas. He will co-chair the Masters Program Committee and be responsible for developing a new medical innovation program/courses. Congratulations Eric!

July 2013
Michelle and Mark Borash delivered a new baby boy, Brady James, on July 17th (7 lbs., 4 oz.). Congratulations to the Borash family!

June 2013
Stephen Howard accepted a position as Senior Systems Engineer in AF Solutions, Medtronic, Inc. Congrats!

August 2012
Monica Mahre became a grandmother for the first time on August 8th. Her daughter and son-in-law (Julie and John) delivered a healthy baby girl. Harper Ann weighed 8.0 lbs and was 21" long, and has long dark hair.

August 2012
We were honored to host Dr. Earl Bakken for a tour of the lab on Friday, August 10th. It was a memorable day of sharing history and showcasing current research projects. A gallery of images from Earl's visit is available.

August 2012
Ashish Singal will transition to a full-time RA position in the lab in September to work on his PhD thesis studies. At the same time, Cole Holmgren (medical student) will begin his project to earn a Masters degree in Biomedical Engineering in the lab (MD/MS Program). Welcome to the lab!

August 2012
Chris Rolfes (PhD, 2012) will begin his Innovation Fellowship with the Medical Devices Center at the University of Minnesota in September. Good luck!

August 2012
Mike Bateman (PhD, 2012) started his new position as Senior Scientist in the Structural Heart R&D group at Medtronic on August 13th. Congratulations!

July 2012
Lesa Nord was selected as a recipient for the prestigious University of Manchester North American Foundation (NAFUM) Award for the upcoming session, 2012-2013. NAFUM is an independent nonprofit corporation dedicated to educational endeavors and focused on the promotion and development of continuing relationships of loyalty amongst Manchester's alumni and friends in the U.S. Congrats Lesa!

March 2012
Congratulations to Lesa Nord for being named a Fullbright Scholar for the 2012-2013 school year. Lesa will earn a Masters degree in Humanitarianism and Conflict Response at Manchester University (UK). Good luck Lesa!

March 2012
Robin Brusen
(Masters BMEn 2010) has been matched to Columbia University in New York City for his residency in internal medicine. Congrats and good luck!

March 2012
Leah and Jason Quill (PhD, 2009) delivered a beautiful baby girl, Peyton Louis, on February 15, 2012. Peyton was 19" long and weighed 6# 8oz. Congratulations to the Quill family!!

December 2011
Stephen Quallich joined the Visible Heart Lab as a PhD student in December. Originally from Connecticut, Stephen graduated with a BS degree in Biomedical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (Troy, NY) in May 2011, and is currently enrolled in the Biomedical Engineering graduate program at the U. Welcome, Stephen!

December 2011
Monica Mahre was selected as the December recipient of the Department of Surgery Employee Recognition Program staff award. Congratulations Monica!

November 2011
Former medical students in the lab, Robin Brusen, Christopher DeNucci, and Cori Russell, have been nominated to Alpha Omega Alpha, the medical honor society. Congratulations on this outstanding achievement!

September 2011
Paul and Marge Iaizzo become grandparents for the first time in September. Giada Irene was born to Maria and Sean Garrity; she was 6# 7oz and has long dark hair and brown eyes. Congrats to the proud parents and grandparents!

September 2011
Mark Benscoter and his wife welcomed Marin Abigail to their family in September. Congrats to the Benscoter family!

June 2011
Charles Soule became a new grandfather on June 14th. Haylee weighed 7 lb. 8 oz., and Grandpa Charles says she looks like her dad, Zach. Congrats!

May 2011
Alex Hill (PhD, 2003) was just named a Medtronic Technical Fellow, an award that recognizes significant and consistent contributions to the technical and scientific goals of Medtronic. What an honor--congratulations Alex!

April 2011
Laura and Nick Skadsberg delivered a beautiful baby girl, Isabella Marie, on Friday, April 22nd. Isabella weighed 6 lb., 15 oz., and was 20.5" long. Congrats to the Skadsberg family!

March 2011
Maneesh Shrivastav (PhD, 2007) accepted a new position with Medtronic CRDM in India, and will begin in May.

December 2010
Eric Richardson (PhD, 2009) and his wife Tatiana welcomed a new little boy to their family on December 10th. Weston weighed 9 lbs. 1 oz. and was 22 inches long. Congratulations to the entire Richardson family!

December 2010
Tim Laske (PhD, 2004) was recently promoted to Vice President of Research & Development for the AF Solutions Division at Medtronic, Inc. What a wonderful accomplishment, Tim!!

November 2010
Janis and Mike Kimmel (PhD, 2007) added Genevieve (Genna) Rose to their growing family on Monday, November 15th. Albeit 23 days early, Genna weighed 7 lb. 8 oz. and was 19" long. Big brothers Logan and Henry are helping out in any way they can....

October 2010
Effective September 1, 2010 Nick Skadsberg (PhD, 2004) was appointed an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Surgery. Congratulations Nick!

July 2010
Medtronic selected Maneesh Shrivastav (PhD, 2007) as a 2010 Momentum Award Winner in honor of his longtime commitment to bettering our communities and his exceptional leadership in engaging fellow employees to do the same. Part of this humanitarian award involves a grant which Maneesh very generously gifted to the Visible Heart Lab. Congratulations Maneesh and thank you for the gift!!

At Medtronic, we honor and award employees who create humanitarian impact and further our mission around the world through an award we call the Momentum Award.  Maneesh was selected as a 2010 Momentum Award Winner, and he has chosen your organization to be the recipient of the $1,000 grant that is his gift.

June 2010
Paul Iaizzo celebrates his 20th anniversary at the University of Minnesota during the week of June 28th. Congrats Paul!

June 2010
We are saddened by the death of former PhD student Jon Falkenberg who passed away on May 17th. Jon spent many years with us here in the lab, earning a Masters degree in Physiology (1997) and a PhD degree in Cellular and Integrative Physiology (2000). He was a very curious, gentle, and bright young man, and will be greatly missed.

April 2010
Sarah and Alex Hill (PhD, 2003) had a baby boy, Devin, on April 19th. Devin weighed 9lbs, 6 oz and was 22" at birth. Sarah and new baby are doing well (and Alex is sporting a big smile as well)! Congrats to the Hill family!

February 2010
Rebecca Li delivered her son, Peter, on Monday, Feb. 8th. He weighed 7lbs, 13oz (21.5"), and both mom and baby are doing great.  Congratulations, Rebecca!!

December 2009
Matt and Sara Anderson (PhD, 2008) welcomed new baby boy, Samuel James, to their family on Sunday, December 6th. Samuel weighed in at 8lbs 1oz, and  was 20 inches long. Both Sara and Samuel are doing fine. Congrats to the Anderson family!!

September 2009
Mike Eggen accepted a Senior Scientist position at Medtronic's CRDM Therapy Delivery Research & Technology division starting October 5th. Congratulations Mike!

August 2009
Another summer baby! Congrats to Nathalie Odryzynski (MS, 2001) and her family as they welcomed new baby girl, Cloe, into their family. All the best to everyone!

August 2009
Samira Tahvildari (MS, 2000) was recently promoted to Principle Mechanical Engineer at Medtronic, Inc. Congrats Samira!

August 2009
Chris Rolfes married Melissa on August 15th. Congrats to the newlyweds!

July 2009
Jason Quill (PhD, 2009) married Leah Vanderploeg on July 18th at a beautiful outdoor wedding on the banks of Lake Namakagon in northern Wisconsin. It was a bit cool for late July, but everyone had a fun time!


June 2009
Jason Quill accepted a Senior Scientist position with the CardioVascular Research group at Medtronic. Way to go, Jason!

May 2009
Jason and Sarah Vieau (MS, 2004) had a baby boy on May 7th. Dylan William Vieau weighed 6 lbs. 14 oz, and was 20" long. Congrats to the Vieau family!

April 2009
Eric Richardson accepted the position of Senior R&D Engineer at Medtronic Cardiovascular in Santa Ana, CA, where he will be working on the development of transcatheter heart valves. Congratulations Eric!

January 2009
Kristin Donley (2002/3 volunteer) and her husband delivered a healthy baby girl, Harriet Elizabeth in January. Contratulations!

October 2008
Co-chairs of the Design of Medical Devices Conference presented Gary Williams with an Outstanding Service Award in recognition of his dedicated service in coordinating and working at the annual conference. Congrats Gary!

August 25, 2008
It was a big weekend for engagements in the lab! Jason Quill proposed to Leah and Chris Rolfes proposed to Melissa--and both young ladies accepted. Congratulations!!

August 2008
Congratulations to the Kimmels as they welcomed Henry Michael into their family on August 8, 2008. Although 15 days early, Henry weighed 10# 2 oz. and was 22" long. What a great looking family, Mike and Janis!!

June 19, 2008
Lucas and Sarah Ahlberg delivered two beautiful and healthy baby boys on June 19th, 2008. The stats: Lincoln Lucas weighed 5# 7 oz. (20.5" long) and Evan Handahl weighed 5# 3 oz. (20.25" long). Congratulations to the Ahlbergs!!

June 2008
NEW BABIES!! Congratulation to the new parents/grandparents of:
* Kevin, son of Rebecca Li and Fei Lu. Born on April 27th, Kevin weighed 7# 11 oz.
* Elizabeth Miriam, daughter of Eric and Tatiana Richardson (also big sisters Anna and Tessa). Elizabeth was born on May 22nd; she weighed 8# 15 oz. and is a very calm baby, according to Dad.
* Brennan David Gallagher, grandson of Bill and Jan Gallagher; Brennan was born on June 3rd to Brian and Nicole (and Finnigan) Gallagher, weighing in at 9# 2 oz.

May 2008
Nick Skadsberg (PhD, 2004) was recently engaged!! Congrats Nick!

February 2008
Many current and former students in our lab announced that they will be adding to their families in the upcoming months:

Rebecca Li and husband Fei Lu are expecting a baby boy in May
Maneesh Shrivastav and wife will add a new baby to their family in June
Sarah and Lucas Ahlberg are expecting TWINS in July
Mike and Janis Kimmel are expecting their second child in August
Congratulations to all!

February 2008
There were two weddings in our group this past fall: Rebecca Li and Andy Geeslin. Congratulations to both couples!

October 2007
Tatiana and Eric Richardson announced that they are expecting their third child in May 2008 (it's a girl!). Congratulations to the entire family!

October 18, 2007
Alex Hill (PhD, 2003) received the "First Decade Award" from Gustavus Adolphus College at an award banquet on October 13th. This award recognizes early professional achievements of outstanding alumni. Congratulations Alex!!

October 1, 2007
Congratulations to Jackie Mohn on her acceptance to the Medical School at the University of Minnesota starting Fall 2008.

August 2007
Ryan Scott recently started medical school at Lincoln Memorial University- DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine, located in Harrogate TN.

July 2007
Congratulations to Cary Effertz who was recently engaged! Cary will begin medical school at the University of Minnesota early in August, while his fiance started in the Physicians Assistant program at Augsburg College this summer.

March 2007
Josh surprised Sara Overggard with an engagement ring during their trip to California in early March. Congratulations Sara and Josh!

March 13, 2007
Gustavus Adolphus College recently awarded Alex Hill (PhD, 2003) the First Decade Award, an alumni award recognizing early professional achievement. The award will be presented in October. Congrats Alex!

December 18, 2006
Congratulations to Mike and Janis Kimmel who delivered a beautiful baby boy, Logan William, on Friday, December 15th! Logan weighed in at 9# 1oz. and 21.5" long (is a football career in his future?). Everyone is doing well after the big event.

November 21, 2006
Shailesh Musley (Post doc, 1999) has been promoted to Principal Scientist in the Diagnostics and Monitoring Research Group. Shailesh is currently exploring best signal candidates for endocardial acute MI detection. Over the past years, he has made several valuable contributions including: development of atrial shock delay as a means to increase
atrial shock efficacy, modification to the FFRW criteria leading to decreases of inappropriate AF episode terminations, and improvements to the understanding of cardioversion shock related pain.

November 1, 2006
Sarah Ahlberg has accepted a Scientist position in Medtronic, Inc.'s Cardiac Surgery division, specializing in the area of atrial fibrillation. Sarah will start her new job in late November. Congratulations Sarah!

August 24, 2006
Former graduate Kate Chromy (DPT Physical Therapy, 2002) was married on August 12th and spent her honeymoon in London and Paris. Congrats!

August 1, 2006
Mike Kimmel recently accepted a position as a Mechanical Design Engineer at Medtronic, Inc. (Therapy Delivery). Mike will start his new job on August 21st--Congratulations!

June 19, 2006
Kaavya, the new daughter of Jay Kokate (PhD, Biomedical Engineering, 1996), was born on May 19, 2006. She was 20" tall and weighed 7lbs, 8oz. Congratulations to the entire Kokate family!

May 15, 2006
Congratulations to Tatiana and Eric Richardson (and big sister Anna) on the
delivery of their new baby girl!! Taressa Marie was born on May 12th and weighed 8lb. 10oz.. Everyone is doing well after the big event!

April 2006
Tracey and Chris Quinn (MS, Biomedical Engineering 1999) welcomed a new baby girl into their family on April 10th, 2006. Her name is Emerson Cosgrove Quinn, and she weighed 6 lbs. 12 oz. (20" long). Congratulations to the Quinn family!

March 2006
Congratulation to Theresa Rosendahl and Ryan Hegge who celebrated their wedding on a beautiful Mexican beach on March 17th!

February 2, 2006
Congratulations to Charles Soule who was recently promoted to Scientist in the laboratory!

January 25, 2006
Lisa and James Coles (PhD, 2002) delivered a new (and VERY CUTE) baby boy, James Randall, on December 25th. Congratulations to the Coles family!

November 28, 2005
Maneesh Shrivastav (PhD student, Biomedical Engineering) and his wife delivered a healthy baby boy on Monday, November 21st. Kairav is 20.5" long and weighs 7lbs, 8oz.! Congratulations to the entire family!!

August 23, 2005
Ann, Noah, and Mike Loushin just added a baby girl to their family. Ella was born 8/23/05 at 1:50 PM, weighing 6lbs. 6oz.; length 17 inches. Congratulation to the Loushin family!

August 13, 2005
Sarah Handahl and Lucas Ahlberg were married in a beautiful ceremony in St. Cloud. It was great fun to see many lab alumni at the celebration. Congrats Sarah and Lucas!

July 9, 2005
Kevin Fitzgerald and Ashley were married in Montana. Congratulations to the happy couple!

May 29, 2005
Rachel Rose Miller was born to parents Troy and Judy Miller (MS, Biomedical Engineering, 2002). She was 6 lbs 1 oz and 19" long. After a long labor, Rachel made quite an entrance--Dad delivered his baby girl as the medical staff had stepped out of the room briefly. Everyone is healthy and happy! Congratulations to the Millers!!!

April 2005
Congratulations to Jackie Youtsos (senior, Directed Research) who was asked to speak at the U of MN commencement ceremony on May 14th! We're proud of you Jackie!

March 23, 2005
Jackie Youtsos (senior, Directed Research) will be recognized for her outstanding performance in Physiology at an awards ceremony in April. Jackie is one of three Steer Johnson award winners for 2004; this award is based upon class performance and a written paper in Physiology 3071. Congrats on a job well done, Jackie!!

March 4, 2005
Jackie Youtsos (senior, Directed Research) was recognized as one of the "Outstanding Student Leaders in the College of Biological Sciences" at a recent Dean's Reception. Congratulations, Jackie!

January 7, 2005
An interview with Paul Iaizzo appeared in the UMNnews, in a story titled "Sleeping it off"

December 1, 2004
We hope Bill and Monica Mahre have a wonderful second honeymoon in Hawaii, Happy 25th anniversary.

October 25, 2004
Paul Iaizzo was honored at the endowed scholar ceremony, hosted by the Minnesota Medical Foundation at their Annual Dinner. This honor was in recognition of the "Medtronic Professor in Visible Heart® Research" endowment recently bestowed by Medtronic, Inc. Congratulations Paul!

October 2004
We're pleased to announce some engagements and upcoming weddings in our
* Sarah Vincent is making final plans for her wedding, scheduled for December 4th. Congratulations Sarah and Jason!
* Kevin Fitzgerald recently proposed to his long-time girlfriend, Ashley; they are planning a July 9th wedding in Montana. We couldn't be happier that you two are finally together (as in one geographical area)!

October 2004
Nick Skadsberg has accepted an offer for Sr. Scientist in the Therapy Delivery of Medtronic and will begin full time work in January 2005. He will be directly reporting to Scott Brabec.

August 2004
Sarah Vincent has accepted a position as an Education Specialist at Medtronic, Inc.

July 2004
Matt Sweney graduated from medical school at the University of Nebraska, and will be starting his residency in Pediatric Neurology in Omaha, Nebraska.

July 17, 2004
We are pleased to announce the engagement of Sarah Handahl and Lucas Ahlberg. They are planning an August 2005 wedding.

May, 2004
James Coles has accepted a Regional Field Scientist Position in the Mid-Atlantic Region and will be based out of Baltimore, MD. The field scientist supports physician-initiated research proposals funded by Medtronic, Inc.

May, 2004
Congratulations to Julie Mahre, daughter of Bill and Monica Mahre, who received the Athena Award for outstanding student athlete at White Bear Lake high school.

May, 2004
Congratulations to Matt Varner for being accepted into the Masters of Public Health program at the University of Minnesota

April 19, 2004
Kevin Fitzgerald has accepted a position as a Hardware Quality Assurance (HWQA) Intern for Medtronic, Inc. in Redmond WA. He starts work in May.

Ryan Lahm (MS in Biomedical Engineering, 1997-1999) and his wife, Stacy, delivered a baby boy on February 16, 2004. Bryce Patrick weighed 7 lb. 10 oz. and was 21" long at birth.

On February 15, 2004 Jin Back Hong (PhD in Biomedical Engineering, 1997-2002) and his wife delivered a healthy baby boy named Jeho. Jeho weighed in at 8 lb. 9 oz.

Jeremy Riedesel (MS in Biomedical Engineering, 1997-1998) was accepted to medical school at the University of Cincinnati starting in 2003. During a visit on March 23rd, Jeremy claimed that "he is surviving his first year."

Bill Gallagher and his wife Jan become grandparents again when Finnigan Gallagher was born in January 2004.

Michael Loushin (MD, Chief Resident in Anesthesiology, 1993-1998, 2001-2002) and his wife Ann delivered a healthy baby boy, Noah, on December 11, 2003. Noah was 7 lb. 5 oz. and 19" long at birth.

Sarah Vincent (current MS candidate in Biomedical Engineering) was recently engaged and is planning a December 2004 wedding.

Josh Brauer (MS in Biomedical Engineering, 2000-2001) is currently attending medical School at the University of Denver. He was married in September 2003.

Jeff Geske (Directed research in Physiology, 2002) was accepted to the Mayo Medical School starting in 2003.

Matt Chu (Life Sciences Summer Research Programs, 2000-2001) was accepted to medical school at Johns Hopkins starting in 2003.

© 2017 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer. Privacy Statement