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December 16, 2022

Alumni Notes | December 2022

Career Updates

Daniel Cathron ‘07 (Master of School Psychology) is now a School Psychologist at East Irondequoit Central School District.

Jason P. Johnston

Jason P. Johnston ‘93 (Humanities) is now the Director of Online Learning at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville.


Elizabeth (Hotchkiss) Liberati ‘17 (Master of School Psychology) is now a School Psychologist at Red Jacket School District.

Nicole (Graudons) Young ‘20 (Master of School Psychology) is now a School Psychologist at Midlakes School District.



Emily Estelle (Boughan) Dodson

Emily Estelle (Boughan) Dodson ‘60 (English) age 84, of Fredericksburg, passed away on Saturday, July 9, 2022, at home with her loving family by her side.

Emily was a graduate and Salutatorian of the class of 1956 at West Point High School, in West Point, Virginia. She later graduated from Roberts Wesleyan College in 1960, where she was also honored to appear in 1959-60 edition of 'Who's Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges'. Her English degree prepared her for a career as a legal secretary. She worked for Ashby and Roberts in Fredericksburg for approximately a decade.

Following the birth of her daughter, Emily dedicated her time to the family home while also engaging in various Bible studies, to include active participation in the Christian Women's Club. She served as a pianist for the Christian Woman's Club, as well at the churches where she attended. She was a founding member and sang in the choir at Grace Memorial Church for 25 years.

Survivors include her husband, John Richard Dodson; and daughter, Jennifer Leigh Dodson of Fredericksburg.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Henry Wood Boughan Jr. and Mariam Adams Guthrie Boughan of West Point, Virginia.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Zoan Baptist Church or the Fredericksburg Regional Food Bank.

Caitlin Jennifer McFarland

Caitlin Jennifer McFarland ‘09 (Biochemistry) M.D., a psychiatrist dedicated to mental health education and advocacy, died in an automobile collision on Dec. 7, 2022.

She was 35 and lived in Baltimore City. Dr. McFarland is survived by her wife, Elisabeth (Philip) McFarland, LCSW-C, and her brother Ian, mother, Nancy, and father, Andrew of Dansville, New York. She enjoyed running and biking and especially hiking. In recent years, she hiked a significant portion of the Appalachian Trail. Dr. McFarland was also passionate about music. She was an accomplished vocalist who loved singing in Episcopal church choirs in Burlington, Vermont and Baltimore. She was also an avid volunteer for underserved communities.

Dr. McFarland was born and raised in western New York and graduated from Roberts Wesleyan College. After spending a few years as a researcher at the University of Vermont, she joined their School of Medicine. In 2020, she completed her psychiatry residency at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and was awarded the Frank L. Coulson, Jr. Award for Clinical Excellence.

At the time of her death, Dr. McFarland served as the Director of Behavioral Health and Psychiatry at the West Cecil Health Clinic in Conowingo, Maryland. She was also an instructor at the Sex and Gender Clinic in the Department of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. McFarland was a mental health advocate for LGBTQI+ populations, researching, lecturing and writing on issues related to care. She planned to join the Hopkins full-time faculty in July as director of an outpatient clinic focused on transgender mental health care.

She was the eldest of ten adoring cousins who looked to her as a role model and mentor and was the niece of Edward and Michele McFarland of Baltimore, Paul and Judit McFarland of Oxford, England, Doug and Kim McFarland of York, New York and Stephen McFarland of Macon, Georgia.

A fund to continue Dr. McFarland’s commitment to LGBTQI+ patients and research has been established at

Ellen (McEwen) Nye ‘73 of Portersville, now of Northview Estate, Ellwood City, passed away on September 23, 2022 at the age of 90 years old.

She was survived by her brother’s-in-law; Calvin Nye of Portersville, PA, Joe Nye of New Matamoras, OH and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was born on April 17, 1932, in Fredonia, PA in Mercer County to John and Mary McEwen. She graduated from Fredonia Delaware High School. She was married for 64 years to M. Charles Nye, who passed away on August 2, 2017. She worked at the Toy Plant, J.C. Penny Department Store and Dust Proof of Ellwood City.

She was a member of the Free Methodist Church. She served as a Sunday School teacher, later she served as the church treasurer, and served many more years as the church organist.

She is preceded in death by her sisters and brother’s-in-laws; Mary Frances and Belvin Bartholomew, Dorothy and Thomas Whittingham, Julia and Bill Breese, Eileen and William Scragg, Marjorie and Floyd Ryhal, Virginia McEwen, and Ruth Emma McEwen who died in infancy.

John Vlainic

John W. Vlainic ‘73 (Religion-Philosophy) age 70, died suddenly of a ruptured aortic aneurysm at home early Tuesday morning, October 11th . We can rest assured he died peacefully and is in Jesus’ loving care. John is survived and deeply missed by his wife Ruth and son Jason. Predeceased by his parents Tony and Mildred (Hall) Vlainic. Survived by loving family: Ann and Bruce Campbell-Janz (sister in law and brother in law), Doug and Carla Campbell (brother in law and sister in law), nieces and nephews: Victoria (Clayton) Scott, Allison Campbell, Emily Campbell, Isaac Janz, Madeleine Janz. Predeceased by his brother in law, Paul Campbell and nephew Charles Campbell.

John was born to farming parents outside Tillsonburg. John’s strong work ethic, zest for life and love of books began early in life. His pastor in grade thirteen influenced John’s decision to go into ministry.

John had a keen mind that was fostered through his studies at Roberts Wesleyan College, Rochester, N.Y. (1973), Asbury Seminary, Kentucky (1977), Wycliffe College University of Toronto (1987) and Registered Psychotherapy Degree (2012). His intellectual capabilities complemented his enthusiastic love of people. He made friends in all walks of life.

John pastored Free Methodist Churches in Cambridge, Sarnia and Etobicoke. His last 18 years of professional life was as hospital chaplain at Hamilton Health Sciences. His compassionate care to patients and staff was remarked on regularly. They knew him by his fondness for purple shirts and ties.

John enjoyed sports, mostly watching them, but had in recent years enjoyed pickleball at the community centres. He could tell you who won the Super Bowl in a given year or who was and is playing for the Toronto Blue Jays, Toronto Raptors and Maple Leafs. John loved working with his wood working tools though he was the first to admit he was better at demolition than creating. Many hours were spent in the basement with Jason cutting, nailing and building shelves or other edifices.

Ruth and John were to celebrate their 32nd wedding anniversary on October 12th. John loved Ruth deeply and his nickname for her was “Saint Ruth” on a good day – and there were many good days. Though John had never been off the continent prior to their marriage, he embraced Ruth’s love of travel. Within nine months of their wedding, they were on their way for a month long trip to Africa. This was the first of many travel adventures they enjoyed. He was especially pleased to visit his father’s homeland of the former Yugoslavia in 2010.

John cut a wide swath and his death leaves a huge hole for Ruth & Jason, family, friends, his church communities and neighbours. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Free Methodist Church in Canada, Trinity Church Streetsville, or Community Living Oakville.

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