Alumni Notes


Phil Tompkins is currently a Professor Emeritus at the University of Colorado at Boulder. In March he presented the keynote address at the Conference on Social Justice at Central Michigan University. The address was based on his 2009 book, “Who is My Neighbor? Communicating and Organizing to End Homelessness.” Tompkins also gave a keynote address this fall to faculty and students at Metropolitan State University in Denver.


Joann DiGennaro is serving as the president of Purdue’s Center for Excellence in Education. In 2012, DiGennaro was named one of 100 U.S. Women Leaders in STEM by U.S. News and STEMconnector for having made significant contributions to science and technology. Over the last 30 years, she has advanced the STEM cause both nationally and internationally. She serves on the Dean’s Advisory Board of the College of Liberal Arts at Purdue University, the Board of Visitors of the National Defense Intelligence College, and is a board member of the Global Policy Research Institute at Purdue University.  Recently, DiGennaro was appointed to Purdue University’s Global Affairs Strategic Advisory Council. DiGennaro is a Council Member with the Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center and is on the Advisory Board for the USA Science & Engineering Festival.  She also serves on the Board of Trustees of the Keck Graduate Institute of Life Sciences.


Kristena LaMar is retired, but staying busy. During the school year, she volunteers to help kindergarten to third grade students with their reading skills through SMART (Start Making A Reader Today). She also took the Home Horticultural course through Oregon State University and became a Master Gardener. She decided that wasn’t enough, however, and took the training to become a Master Recycler as well. She puts all those skills together as an Americorp Volunteer at the SMART grade school.


Michael J. Hyde was selected as a 2013 NCA Distinguished Scholar. He also co-edited a volume with James A. Herrick titled, “After the Genome: A Language for our Biotechnological Future.”

Mary Wise is retiring in December. She has been the Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs at Elon University (in North Carolina). Prior to this, she was the founding Associate Dean of the School of Communication at Ball State University.


Jim Yukich, a television and film producer, has his hands full. He spent seven years as director of E! network’s hit show, Chelsea Lately, hosted by late-night’s most acerbic comedian,Chelsea Handler. He also directed a weekly variety show, Hello Ross, and takes on music and comedy projects on the side.


Shelley Poston Triol is the Assistant Vice President of External Affairs at Purdue University.


Wendy Levi Lienhart is happily working as a media relations consultant while home with her three children: Banistre, 17, Cooper, 15, and Peyton, 13.


Karen Siciliano is the Owner and President of Siciliano Landscape Company in Red Band, New Jersey. Her company provides landscape design, installation, and maintenance for both commercial and residential clients.


Kristine K. Stevens recently published a book titled, “If Your Dream Doesn’t Scare You, It Isn’t Big Enough: A Solo Journey around the World.” When her 40th birthday was approaching, Stevens evaluated her life and ended up selling her house, quitting her job and traveling around the world. Her book tells the story of what happened during her adventure. Stevens now works at the Savannah College of Art and Design as the senior web content manager. Although she thrives in Savannah, Georgia–despite its monstrous palmetto bugs, Stevens and her husband, Gene Beeco, are plotting another global adventure, this time focusing on the Pacific Rim.


Anne Fliotsos, Professor of Theatre at Purdue University, recently co-edited “International Women Stage Directors,” published by the University of Illinois Press. She spent part of her sabbatical teaching acting at Tongji University in Shanghai, China.


Rachel Holloway was appointed Vice Provost for Undergraduate Academic Affairs at Virginia Tech. Holloway will directly oversee areas that enhance the overall undergraduate experience such as academic support services, student success, University Studies, University Honors, First Year Experiences, undergraduate research, the Undergraduate Honor System, and the revision of the current Curriculum for Liberal Education.

Cathy Hollinden Tweedie is the new Communications Manager for Special School District of St. Louis County. SSD serves more than 25,000 students in 22 school districts and 265 schools offering special education and technical education services.


Carole C. Dotson has worked with InTelegy Corporation for 17 years, most recently as Director of Consulting and Partner.  Dotson has specialized in assisting California Health and Human Service Agencies streamline the client service delivery model for benefit application and ongoing case maintenance processes for more than nine years.  One of Dotson’s clients, Fresno County, was awarded the prestigious 2013 CSAC Challenge Award for its Lobby Modernization and Improved Client Experience.


Bey-Ling Sha was promoted to full professor and appointed director of the School of Journalism & Media Studies, San Diego State University.


Katie McCaskey published the book, "Per-Money: Permaculture Principles for Indie Biz Growth" in February 2015. It is based on the experience of building George Bowers Grocery, Katie's neighborhood restaurant and beer garden, which will celebrate seven years in business in November 2015.


Maureen Richmond received the Mortar Board 2013 Emerging Leader Award, which recognizes alumni who are within 20 years of their graduation, have demonstrated exceptional achievement in their careers, and are noted for outstanding community service. Richmond recently accepted a position in corporate communication and social media with Honda North America.


Jen Glazer is a consultant and senior manager for Grant Thornton. Her expertise is in organizational analysis, performance management, and acquisition. Her primary client is the Federal Aviation Administration.


Sarah (Womack) Brown received the 2013 Indiana University School of Nursing Alumni Association Dotaline E. Allen Award.


Laura Bukowski was elevated to VP, Media Director at Starcom Worldwide in Chicago. She has been with the company since graduating from Purdue in 2000. In addition to company and client projects, she enjoys being co-captain of the Purdue Recruiting Team at Starcom and coming back to campus each fall to meet prospective candidates.


Kate Brandon recently received her Ph.D. in Theatre from Wayne State University and is now an Associate Professor at Biola University in California.

Daniel Koutsis was recently named the Head Varsity Boys Basketball Coach at Lake View High School in Chicago.

Corrie Wollet and her husband Jacob Bonk (Also a 2003 grad) have relocated to Shanghai, China, from New York City. Wollet is currently working with Ketchum Public Relations as the Vice President of Consumer Branding. Her focus is working with multinational companies such as Procter & Gamble and The Hershey Company.


Rob Heise married University of Illinois MD/Ph.D. graduate Claudia Winograd and moved to Portland, Maine, for her Family Medicine Residency. Heise is working as IT Application Analyst Manager at IDEXX Laboratories, supporting custom in-house built Global Customer Relationship Management System.

Sarah Sullivan was promoted to Off-Highway Communications Manager at Cummins, Inc. She is responsible for public relations and marketing communications for the oil and gas, mining, agriculture and construction markets for Cummins.


Megan E. (Turner) Wolenberg was promoted to International Marketing Manager in the International Group, a division of Wolverine World Wide, Inc., in April. She works on brand and marketing strategy with distributor partners in Latin America and Asia Pacific for the Merrell, Chaco and Patagonia Footwear brands. She married Erik Wolenberg (a Michigan State University alumnus) on 12.12.12 in a dream wedding through their local Grand Rapids news station, Woodtv8.


Christopher Adam is now working for Marketing and Media at Purdue University.


Emily Blake graduated from Purdue with a major in General Communication and a minor in Organizational Leadership and Supervision. She is now the Marketing and Promotions Coordinator for the Purdue Alumni Association.


Ashley Scott is  the President of AGS Consulting and the Founder of CurlyInCollege, a lifestyle brand and online publication that helps multicultural college students navigate a life with curls on campus.


Scott Oliver is in law school at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law. He has become involved with various organizations within the school such as the Health Law Society, Indianapolis Bar Association, Student Bar Association, and the Shortridge Mentoring Program. Additionally, he was recently elected to serve as the Class of 2016 Student Representative. Through this position he is able to work with faculty and administration to help voice student concerns and create options for overall improvement. In his spare time, he has had the privilege to network around the city and meet distinguished professionals in various areas of law.


Brenda Ramirez defined her time at Purdue by participating in multiple undergraduate research projects. Ramirez got her first taste of undergraduate research as a freshman, working with English professor Lance Duerfahrd to remake a film using disabled actors. Through the Wilke Internship Program, Ramirez earned the opportunity to participate in undergraduate research again, this time studying the nature of advice-giving in various cultures. Ramirez went on to co-author a paper with Communications professor Erina MacGeorge, which was presented at a national communications conference. In 2015, Brenda was finalist for the prestigious Rhodes Scholarship. She now works at Purdue University, in the College of Liberal Arts, as a Recruitment Specialist.

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