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Department of Geography
Dean Hall 301
(509) 963-1188

Nancy Hultquist


Nancy Brannen Hultquist was born in 1943 and grew up in Atlanta, GA on Piedmont Road near the Southern Pacific Railroad and a 2-lane road which soon became a 6-lane highway. Across the street was a 32-lane bowling alley where she worked (at first for merchandise) till she left for grad school in 1965. Behind her house were some remaining undeveloped woods with a creek where she spent quality time with her dog. Summers were with cousins in Savannah, GA and along the South Carolina coast on a barrier island, Sullivan's Island, biking, water skiing, and fishing. Her first degree from Georgia State University was in Math, but she had an equivalent "Geography Major" with many courses taken from her favorite teacher, Sanford H. Bederman, a Louisiana-trained cultural geographer. Her travel lust started early as she rode the old "Nancy Hanks" train to Savannah to visit her grandmother, born in then Austria, near Ljubljana, Jugoslavia (now Slovenia). In 1965, she traveled on a geography field trip to Europe with Sandy & Jolayne Bederman, doing 17 countries in 9 weeks, including the place of her grandmother's birth. This cinched geography as the discipline of choice for her career.

Graduate work in geography at the University of Cincinnati (where she met John), was under the tutelage of Bob McNee, in urban/ economic geography. Her thesis advisor was Peter Mounfield, visiting from Aberystwyth, Wales. This was particularly interesting as the Brannen family on her father's side is Welsh. At UC, Nancy had an assistantship in the University Computer Center, and learned from its director, Carl Evert, an electrical engineer, many skills about early computers starting with the IBM 1620, with an attached Calcomp Plotter. This was punched-card days of data input (and output for the 1620)!

Leaving there, she returned to Georgia State University and taught for 2 years. She and John were married in 1969, and she joined him at the University of Iowa, where he had been working toward his Ph.D. They left in 1974 for the wilds of Idaho and a shared teaching position in the Geography Department at the University of Idaho. Nancy left there in 1988 to come to CWU.

While in Iowa, John's old love for his Brittany hunting dog returned and they got their first Brittany, Wisty. A great natural hunter, pointer, and retriever, Wisty got us involved in pheasant hunting in Iowa. Once in Idaho, a newly forming Brittany club in Spokane, WA attracted our interest and we launched a new hobby--competing in Pointing Dog Field Trials with our Brittanys. We own the first and third Dual Champion (field and show) Brittanys in Idaho. Nancy also competed in bowling and holds the record of High Series (679) for Women in Moscow, ID.

Many dogs since, we are still Brittany breeders, although we do not take time to compete as we once did. We still own horses, which are the main means of conveyance in field trialing. Now, as members of the Kittitas Trail Riders club, we go for trail rides around the region. One of the neatest trails starts just two miles up the road from our house, up the Naneum Canyon to Walker Flats. What better way to enjoy the environment around us.

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