Class Notes

September 2015

Shukura Ingram Millender

Judge Shukura Millender
J.D. '98

Shukura Ingram Millender (J.D. ’98) was recently sworn-in as a full-time Magistrate Judge on the Magistrate Court of Fulton County. Judge Millender began her career as a prosecutor. She served as an assistant solicitor for the City Court of Atlanta and Senior Assistant District Attorney for the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office. After eight years in public service, she joined Thomas Kennedy Sampson & Tompkins, the oldest African-American owned law firm in Georgia, as an associate. Judge Millender specialized in insurance defense, medical malpractice and premises liability at the firm. After eight years as a civil trial lawyer, she was appointed to the Magistrate Court.


Margaret Venable

Ph.D. '96

Margaret Venable (Ph.D. ’96) has been named as the new president of Dalton State College. The announcement was made by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia and follows a recommendation by Chancellor Hank Huckaby that ends the interim status Venable has held at Dalton State since January.

Christopher Oliva

B.B.A. '91

Christopher Oliva (B.B.A. ’91) has joined Crowe Horwath LLP, one of the largest public accounting, consulting and technology firms in the U.S., as a director in tax services. In this role, he will provide corporate level tax support to the firm’s New York-area corporate tax and audit clients. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and New York State Society of CPA (NYSSCPA).

Tisa Smart-Washington

B.A. '01

Tisa Smart-Washington (B.A. ’01), Chief Deputy Tax Commissioner in Rockdale County, was named to Atlanta Regional Commission’s Regional Leadership Institute Class of 2015.

Katy Owen

Katy Owen of Interface, Inc.
B.S. '86

Katy Owen (B.S. ’86) is the new global vice president and chief human resources officer for Atlanta-based Interface, Inc., the world’s largest manufacturer of modular carpet. Katy is responsible for the development and oversight of human resources strategies and initiatives for talent management, organization development, learning, compensation, culture and diversity for Interface’s global associates.

August 2015

Kyle Stapleton

Kyle Stapleton (BBA '09, MBA '12)
MBA '12
B.B.A. '09

Kyle Stapleton (B.B.A. ’09, MBA ’12), communications professional at Jackson Spalding, was selected for the LEAD Atlanta Class of 2016, an intensive eight-month leadership development and community education program targeted at promising young professionals.

Josh Cuevas

Ph.D. '11

Josh Cuevas (Ph.D. ’11), assistant professor of education in the College of Education at the University of North Georgia, has been selected as Fieldale Chair for the 2015-’16 academic year. The chair was funded by the Fieldale Corporation to assist the university in attracting outstanding faculty in teacher education.

Daniel S Sobczak

Daniel Sobczak speaking at the 2015 NEA Representative Assembly in Orlando in opposition to New Business Item 80 - a proposed boycott of Coca-Cola.
M.Ed. '06

Daniel Sobczak (M.Ed. ’06) was elected by the Representative Assembly of the Georgia Association of Educators to be one of the two members of the National Education Association’s (NEA) Board of Directors. He officially takes office Sept. 1 and will serve a three-year term. Sobczak is beginning his 11th year in public education and his ninth teaching Social Studies at Southwest DeKalb High School in DeKalb County.

Adrienne Meehan

B.B.A. '11

In August 2015, Adrienne Meehan (B.B.A. ’11) (formerly Brittany Anna Weiner) graduated from Texas A&M University with a masters degree in statistics.

G. Robert Greene Sr.

Ph.D. '83

G. Robert Greene (Ph.D. ’83) was awarded the “Outstanding Graduate Faculty” award in May, 2015, at the University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, Va., where he teaches leadership and management in the College of Business.

Daniel Hughes

B.B.A. '02

Daniel Hughes (B.B.A. ’02) is a foreign service officer with the U.S. Department of State.

July 2015

Donald Brewer

Donald Brewer releases his latest book "Thunder Canyon."
M.S. '76

Don Brewer’s (M.S. ’76) second book, Thunder Canyon, has been released by Total Recall Press. This book details the investigative actions of U.S. Secret Service Operatives in 1900 while investigating a counterfeit gold coin and gold bar case. The story is set in the gold boom town of Cripple Creek, Col. The trio of cousins from Don’s prize-winning first book, Worthy of Trust and Confidence, travel back in time to assist the operatives during the investigation. If you are interested in a signed, personalized copy, send Don an email at


Ken Cable

Ken Cable
MBA '98

Ken Cable, P.E., (MBA ’98) has joined Stanley Consultants as Chief Strategy Officer and Vice President. Stanley Consultants is a global consulting engineering firm with offices worldwide. He is based in the firm’s Denver office. Cable will provide leadership in the company’s growth initiatives through the planning, development and execution of strategic plans; gathering and interpreting market intelligence; researching possible mergers and acquisitions; and promoting innovation companywide.

Dina Shaliyehsaboo

B.B.A. '11

Dina Shaliyehsaboo (B.B.A. ’11) has been promoted to audit senior at Arthur Bell CPAs. She has been with the firm since 2012 and has four years of experience with audit engagements. She is responsible for providing accounting and auditing services to a variety of entities including commodity pools, hedge funds and funds of funds as well as attestation services for various clients.

David Brody

M.A. '75

Dr. David Brody (M.A. ’75) has recently published a book entitled “Men Who Teach Young Children: An international perspective” (Institute of Education Press, London). The book is a research study about men in early childhood education in six different countries. Brody worked as a preschool and kindergarten teacher in Atlanta and Boston for 17 years before moving to Israel with his wife, Lynne Genser, and his children in 1988. Over the past twenty six years, David has been involved with teacher education in the training of preschool and kindergarten teachers for the religious school sector in Israel. He is the academic dean and chair of the early childhood department at Efrata College of Education in Jerusalem, and resides in a settlement south of Jerusalem. He is the proud father of five children and nine grandchildren.

Eric Hawkins

J.D. '05

Eric Hawkins (J.D. ’05) of Atlanta became a partner at Hawkins Parnell Thackston & Young LLP.

Eddie Peters

Eddie Peters holding an award naming Ferg's Sports Bar as Best Sports Bar in Tampa Bay.
B. S. '74

Eddie Peters (B. S. ’74) has been promoted by Ferg’s Sports Bar & Grill of St. Petersburg, Fla., to Marketing and Events Manager. Ferg’s is the largest sports bar in the state of Florida and was named by CNN as one of the top 101 Sports Bars in the United States.

John Michael Lee Jr.

M.P.A. '05

John Michael Lee Jr., Ph.D. (M.P.A. ’05), was named the assistant vice president for Alumni Affairs and Advancement at Florida A&M University. Lee previously served as a vice president at the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities in Washington, D.C.

Sam Massell

B.C.S. '51

The Georgia Municipal Association has honored former Atlanta Mayor Sam Massell (B.C.S. ’51) by naming him to its Municipal Government Hall of Fame. He served in four elected positions for a combined total of 22 years, last as Mayor of Atlanta from 1970 to 1974. In addition to serving as Mayor of Atlanta, Massell’s other elected offices included two years on the City Council of Mountain Park, GA; eight years as Secretary of the Atlanta City Executive Committee, and eight years as President of the Atlanta Board of Aldermen/Vice Mayor. He currently serves as President of the Buckhead Coalition, a nonprofit civic organization operating like a chamber of commerce, a tourist bureau, and a Community Town Hall. Read more about Mayor Massell here.

Tiffany Blackmon

B.A. '07

Tiffany Blackmon (B.A. ’07) was recently hired by the NFL Network to cover NFL news events throughout the Southeast. Blackmon is a former Georgia State soccer star who began her television career as a production assistant with The Weather Channel in Atlanta before moving her way through local TV stations in Lake Charles, La., Waco, Texas and Oklahoma City. She caught on with the CSN Network in Houston before her path led to NFL Network. Read more about Blackmon here.

M. Michelle Hood

M.S. '81

M. Michelle Hood (M.S.’81) who will be honored at the 54th Annual Deborah Morton Society Convocation Sept. 22. The honors are presented annually by the University of New England to outstanding women with strong ties to Maine. Hood is the President and CEO of Eastern Maine Health Systems.

Sonya McCoy-Wilson

Sonya McCoy-Wilson, M.A. '08
M.A. '08

Sonya McCoy-Wilson (M.A. ’08) was appointed Dean of Arts and Sciences at Atlanta Technical College.

June 2015

J. Corey Francis

M.Mu. '06

J. Corey Francis (M.Mu. ’06) has joined the faculty of Vanderbilt University as Director of Bands.

Bonnie Buol Rusczcyk

Author of "Take Your Marketing Online: Proven Ways to Grow Your Firm in the Digital Age"
MBA '01

The American Institute of certified public accountants (AICPA) publishes a handful of books every year on topics of interest to the accounting industry and its professionals across North America. The firm’s founder, Bonnie Buol Ruszczyk MBA ’01, was chosen to write about marketing, particularly online tactics, for the industry this year.

Sherrie Brady

J.D. '08

Sherrie Brady (J.D. ’08) was recently appointed chair of the Premises Liability committee of the Georgia Defense Lawyers Association.

B. Andrew Plant

B. Andrew (Drew) Plant
M.P.A. '92

B. Andrew Plant (M.P.A. ’92) is among 15 authors contributing chapters to “Crooked Letter I: Coming Out in the South,” an anthology to be published in August by NewSouth Books. The anthology will debut at the AJC Decatur Book Festival, the largest independent book festival in the country, in September. Plant is of Plant Communications, LLC, an Atlanta-based public relations consultancy serving professional service and financial services firms, as well as political campaigns.

Catherine (Katie) Neal Sinotte

Katie Neal, NMTCB Executive Director
M.S. '06

Katie Neal (M.S. ’06) was recently named as the Executive Director of the Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board, Inc. (NMTCB) in Tucker, Ga. The NMTCB is a national medical board for nuclear medicine technologists.

Rajib N. Sanyal

Ph.D. '88

Rajib N. Sanyal (Ph.D. ’88) has been named the new dean of the Robert B. Willumstad School of Business on the Garden City campus of Adelphi University. Sanyal is currently dean of the Miller College of Business at Ball State University in Indiana. From 2005 to 2009 he was the dean of the College of Business at Northern Michigan University. Sanyal was an American Council on Education Fellow at George Mason University from 2004 to 2005.

Gary T. Wright

B.S. '90

Gary T. Wright (B.S. ’90) was recently named Executive Director at A Friend’s House Inc. in Henry County.

Angele Rishi

J.D. '02

Angele Rishi (J.D. ’02) has joined the law firm of Stout, Kaiser, Matteson, Peake & Hendrick LLC as a partner.

Jonathan Day

M.Ed. '05

Jonathan Day (M.Ed. ’05) was recently promoted from Assistant Principal to Principal at Mulberry Elementary School in Gwinnett County.

Matthew D. Owenby

B.A. '99

Matthew D. Owenby (B.A. ’99) was recently promoted to senior vice president, chief human resources officer at Aflac Insurance. Owenby was vice president for human resources for the company.

Erin Barnette

B.A. '03

Erin Barnette (B.A. ’03) recently joined Fifth Third Bank as a Personal Banker in Lawrenceville, Ga. Barnette previously worked at KeyWorth Bank as a Financial Services Representative and has been in the financial industry for 17 years.

Luz L. Urrutia

B.B.A. '83

Luz L. Urrutia (B.B.A. ’83), Vice President of Retail Sales for Oportun, was recently named a Woman of Influence in 2015 by the Silicon Valley Business Journal.