Kristine Holmgren

Profile Updated: March 22, 2021
Kristine Holmgren
Kristine Holmgren


Kristine Holmgren


Kristine Holmgren


Yes! Attending Reunion
Currently residing In Saint Paul, MN USA
Spouse/Partner Former husbands; Doug Nielsen, Gary Deason
Occupation Playwright
Children? Grace Margaret Holmgren Deason and Claire Bernice Holmgren Deason. Grandchildren Rose, age 2 - and twins More…Fern and Bjorn, five months.
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1967: Senior profile from Bisbila

Interest and talent in writing and speaking gave Kris the positions of Feature editor of the Breeze, senior editor of the Bard and roles in several school plays. Outgoing and animated, Kris was co-captain of the Pom Pon girls and a member of Emporium's teenboard. "Let me call you sweetheart..."

1987: Bio from Twenty Year Reunion

Family: husband Gary Deason, two girls Grace, 5, Claire 3.

Usually found in front of my word processor, writing...or in Hager City, Wisc. working! Or writing more and hanging around old friends looking for inspiration. Whatever happened to Harrison Klein? I usually tell the story of the girls swimsuits in 1964. Also a great story re Mr. Martin's Mechanical Method-- I mean, who could forget?

Enter here whatever you would like to share with classmates. e.g. Your story since high school: What did you do after graduation, and since?

What did I do. . . . hmmm..... something special - - unique - - - Ah, yes!

One unique thing I can report! I'm certain I'm the ONLY one in my class who had her first alcoholic beverage on her 21st birthday!!

After high school and before graduation from Macalester College, I lived in San Francisco with my first husband. After three years in "the city" we moved to Los Angeles where Doug danced with the Merce Cunningham and I served the Disney school ( The California Institute of the Arts) as an admissions officer for the school of design.

When the marriage failed . . . . (for obvious reasons. . the guy was a ballet dancer, for cryin' out loud!!!) - - - I returned to Minnesota to finish my degree at Macalester, and scooted my sweet little carcass to Princeton Theological Seminary in New Jersey where I received a masters degree in divinity.

Thirty years as an ordained Presbyterian Pastor -- married, buried and carried more people than I can ever name!!

If god were only and always "good," I would be in the ministry for the rest of my days. I loved it. LOVED it!

But - - history has a way of breaking into the best intentions of our creator!

And so it came to pass that - - - at the height of my career in the church - - - I was invited to write for the editorial pages of the Star Tribune.

My editor was (still is!) a fabulous man. He led me into a career broader, grander than I would ever have imagined for myself.

Within a brief time my essays appeared in the Boston Globe, Baltimore Sun, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Times blah blah blah. Fiction published by a William Morrow and lots of commentary for National Public Radio's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED in the hey day.

I was a reporter for the Pioneer Press for a few years --- and was told by the publisher that I was the only individual in the history of the paper who wrote for BOTH newspapers at the same time!!

Alas - - the 'fame' did not set well with my Presbyterian brothers.

I don't know if you're aware of this - - - I don't want to carry gossip but - - - lean closer. I have a secret.

It's this: Church people can be petty . Terribly petty.

And since I wasn't about to abandon my new writing career --- off I went to serve some of the most wonderful nonprofits of our generation: Mayo Foundation, Public Radio International, and at the close of my life as an 'employee,' I accepted my ONLY corporate position -- as curriculum designer and course developer for Capella University.

I married husband number two when it was almost too late to marry anyone! And although it was never my plan for him to leave me - - he did. My children were eleven and thirteen years old.

We I are friends today - - but it took me a long, long time to make sense of myself as a single mom - - and longer still to let go of the dream of a happy marriage with a man I truly and genuinely loved.

I grew up, however. A person has to, you know.

These days, I'm even friends with the women he married after me. I guess I must be a true Democrat.

Several years ago --- (ten, to be exact!) - - - with children launched, ministry dreams exhausted, employee fatigue overwhelming.... I answered my second "calling" and began to write for the theatre.

I guess I'm good at it - - my plays have all been produced.

The most provocative--- God Girl --- enjoys its second run this upcoming January at the Northfield Arts Guild Theatre in Northfield, Minnesota.

Come. See it.

If you do, I promise to sit beside you - -

These days, on an average day, you'll find me...

Writing, swimming, worrying about the Trump administration.

What year did you start at UHS (or UES or pre-school)? Why did your parents send you there? (If you left UHS before graduation, why? Where did you go?)

Why did YOUR parents send you there? Who knows why our parents did anything? My parent were a mystery to me all my life. Loved them - - dearly. But man - - were they mysterious. . .

How much did you like (or dislike) going to UHS? Most days I...

...loved it!

A High School story: I remember...

I remember the awful crush I had on Mister Schultz, our shop teacher. My notebooks were covered with hearts - his name in the center. I was only fourteen but I thought for certain I'd met my soul mate. Then, one day after lunch in Shevlin, Mister Schultz cornered me - - and told me to bugging him. He said I was the most unappealing girl he'd ever met. That's the word he chose. Unappealing. Took me a while to recover from that one! But I did! Or. . . did I?

Did you ever have a secret (or not-so-secret) crush on somebody in high school?

I was always in love with Jimmy Stein. Still am.

We used to hold hands on the school bus - and make promises we would never keep.

I still adore him. These days we meet for lunch, drink root beer floats and solve the world's conundrums.

When peace guides the planets and love steers the stars, it will be because Jimmy and I get permission to implement our master plan.

What was your self-perception in high school?

I thought I was adorable. I did!

I thought I was the nicest person I know.

Of course - - I worked hard being nice. Not everyone at U-High was nice to me. Some of the worst are dead - so I won't speak ill of them.

I could never understand why anyone would go out of their way to pick on a person such as I.

The harassment, however, did not drive me underground. Instead, I rose. U-High was my "boot camp" to standing up to bullies.

Truth be told - with the exception of a few wonderful people I've met throughout my life, I still believe I'm a darn nice person. . .

Self esteem has never been a problem. Not a problem for my children either. Must be in the gene pool - - -

One of the best experiences I've had since 1967 was when...

. . . I was hired by the Star Tribune to write a regular column for their editorial page. Another "best" was when my first show "PAPER DADDY" was produced for the FIFTH time!

A highlight of my life was the History Theatre's request for me to write my story - - and the flattery of their produciton of GOD GIRL.

Oh, and the birth of my babies, of course.

If I don't say "the birth of my babies" I won't be a legitimate member of my sex.

My babies. Oh, yes. My babies.

What were some of your favorite activities or forms of entertainment back in High School? Favorite activities now?

I loved the opportunities offered to be on stage. I auditioned for everything that wiggled.

For the first few years at U High, I wasn't considered for much. Then, in the later years, I hit my stride.

I also loved the academic climate around journalism and creative writing.

U High made me take seriously my future as a writer and artist.

Looking back, how do you think going to UHS changed you, in ways that affected you in later life?

If not for U High, I fear I might have fallen off the face of god's green earth.

Our teachers taught me to think.

Our curriculum exposed me to ideas and concepts inaccessible to my public school peers.

My relationships at U High were complicated, confusing, hurtful and intimidating -- - but I found my way. I found friendship.

And little did I know - - working through the experiences of adolescence made me (I believe) a more thoughtful, dedicated and considered artist.

Bucket List: What's one thing you've always wanted to do, but haven't yet had the chance?

I want to take a cruise to Alaska.

Hey, don't knock it. I'm a simple girl.

And I want to explore the outback and coastal cities of Australia again - - and this time take all the time in the world.

A cruise to Alaska and one more shot at Australia - and I swear - - I'm ready to die.

Kristine's Latest Interactions

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Nov 05, 2021 at 9:35 PM
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Nov 05, 2021 at 9:33 PM
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May 26, 2021 at 7:19 PM

Posted on: May 26, 2021 at 7:19 PM

In 2013 in front of our Amsterdam home, the most perfect place we have ever lived.
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May 26, 2021 at 7:19 PM

Posted on: May 26, 2021 at 7:18 PM

In 2013 in front of our Amsterdam home, the most perfect place we have ever lived.
Kristine Holmgren added a comment on her Profile. New comment added.
May 26, 2021 at 12:02 PM

Posted on: May 26, 2021 at 12:02 PM

My home office in 1997. At the time I worked for CellNet Data Systems, a startup and one of the first and most ambitious smart meter companies. Sharene worked for, another startup that built the very first hotel booking engine on the World Wide Web. Even though both companies were ultimately unsuccessful, it was an amazing time to be living and working in Silicon Valley.
Mar 22, 2021 at 7:32 PM

And this... my oldest and first grand. Rosie.

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Mar 23, 2021 at 9:36 AM

Posted on: Mar 22, 2021 at 7:30 PM

Attaching grand pictures of the grand children. All born in March, so all celebrating at my Cozy Cottage all month long. Now that I’ve vaccinated, I’m back in the swing. I hope you’re all well and safe too! Our losses were tough, but we are tougher! Love, K

Kristine Holmgren posted a message. New comment added.
Mar 18, 2021 at 12:48 PM

Posted on: Mar 10, 2021 at 11:55 AM

Dear friends - I only learned today that Barb Cavin lost her twin sister to Covid. We are both professional clergy and I am in touch through various networks... but I had no idea she faced this loss. It might be a lovely gesture for you to join me in reaching out to her. Be well... stay safe... and fir goddess’ sake —- get your dang vaccine as soon as available! Love, Kristine

Jan 31, 2021 at 10:35 AM

Hmmmmm.... I posted and nothing showed!

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Feb 01, 2021 at 4:31 PM

Posted on: Jan 31, 2021 at 10:29 AM

Dear friends - I learned today that John Morten, class of 1966, passed away November 4. He had a long career in international banking and ran his own company. John launched the Arts Grand Strand and was helpful in getting my show Paper Daddy produced. He and I ‘dated’ while students at Macalester... and my mom was very fond of John. He is survived by Patricia ( his wife) two children and a grandson.

Kristine Holmgren has a birthday today. New comment added.
Jan 29, 2021 at 11:23 PM

Posted on: Jan 26, 2021 at 3:33 AM

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Aug 09, 2020 at 8:52 PM

Posted on: Aug 08, 2020 at 9:43 AM

Remember Margit Stange? I do! And there's this. . . .

Margit - when I was first published in the Bard - - found me in the Girl's Can and told me her father read my stuff - - - "He said you're a walking cliche," she said. Even so - - - I always like Margit. That's the kind of kid I was. U High was the best boot camp for high-achieving adulthood! Missed the "coffee chat," but I fully intend to be there for the next one. I continue my regular lunches with Jimmy Stein - - and now that it's summer, Nanner Fogelberg and I are are the pool two, three times each week. Covid be damned!!! Stay healthy! I love you all! - Kristine

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May 26, 2021 at 12:09 PM

Posted on: Jul 20, 2020 at 12:54 PM

Hello, all you Baby Gophers! I’m sorry to have missed our virtual reunion. I’m in a terrible funk over Corona Virus. High risk because I have one, precious kidney... and the isolation has been magical in this way... it creates and supports more isolation. I keep waiting for the funk to lift... and I fight it... but it’s not an easy battle. Pray for a vaccine and for good health for us all. Losing my sister in law to Covid was a tough blow for my gang. Some photos of my valuable collateral!! Be safe out there! And be kind to one another. These are tender days.

Kristine Holmgren has left an In Memory comment for her Profile.
Jun 29, 2020 at 2:10 PM

A deeper, more personal obit for Eduardo. 

I know he expected to visit in late 2020, and was searching for a reunion with Linda. 

life is never ,one enough, right? 

Make today one you will neither regret nor forget.

Kristine Holmgren has left an In Memory comment for her Profile.
Jun 26, 2020 at 9:33 PM

Eduardo and I were in frequent communication until spring of last year ... at that time he stopped initiating and responding, and I am sad to now learn why. While studying with us through AFS Eduardo, Linda Hart and I had many fine, silly and outlandish adventures, and I think their mutual loss of each other was hard for them both. His career was in diplomacy, and his resume is impressive. I'm sad he is dead; he was humble, completely without guile and profound in his intellect and passion for knowledge. His death was sudden; and his legacy is great in his beloved Valencia. 

Kristine Holmgren added a comment on her Profile.
Apr 13, 2020 at 12:46 PM
Jan 26, 2020 at 3:35 AM
Jan 26, 2019 at 3:33 AM
Kristine Holmgren has a birthday today. New comment added.
Jan 30, 2018 at 9:53 AM

Posted on: Jan 26, 2018 at 3:34 AM

Jan 24, 2018 at 12:54 PM

I saw a few of you at the production of my play, GOD GIRL!! Thanks for making the journey! Next run will be in Portland, OR - - - so if you're in that part of the world, watch for news. Meanwhile, you can still catch the last weekend of this run.

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Posted: Oct 25, 2017 at 11:16 PM
Posted: Oct 25, 2017 at 11:16 PM
Posted: Aug 15, 2017 at 7:02 PM
Posted: Aug 14, 2017 at 11:11 AM
Last summer - - as I considered selling and moving into the new (old!) house I'm currently renovating!
Posted: Aug 11, 2017 at 4:36 PM
Posted: Aug 15, 2017 at 3:58 PM
This is the mother's day card I received from my youngest. Truth be told, I was never tempted. . .
Posted: Aug 15, 2017 at 3:59 PM
My grand daughter Fern - - one half of the twin team on the Deason/Chevalier side of the family tree. Five months old today.
Posted: Aug 14, 2017 at 11:08 AM
My grandchildren - - Bjorn and Fern (the twins!) and of course, my adorable Rosie. All of them have their grand father's solid, sweet and steady disposition - - and a little wacky imagination from god-knows-who.
Posted: Aug 14, 2017 at 11:09 AM
Baby Fern is so adorable! I want to keep her little cuteness like this forever!!!
Posted: Aug 15, 2017 at 3:58 PM
Young Bjorn has a great sense of humor, and a wild affection for his blanket and his mommy.