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HENRY CISNEROS Shares HisThoughts on the Future of Ethnicity in America

ISSUE 10 FALL 2008






The 42ndAnnual Orientation Program & Career Forum

An ocean divided Sean Senhouse and his dreams

Consortium community members debate the topic

Two first-year students provide a forum for finance

Not only does diversity celebrate our differences, it celebrates our similarities. We all have distinct perspectives and individual talents that make us unique. Recognizing and celebrating those differences is integral to Bank of America’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. Across our Global footprint we partner with community leaders to open new windows of opportunity and continue a long tradition of community investment that strengthens an environment of diversity and inclusion so our neighbors can achieve their dreams. And we are proud to sponsor The Consortium. Moreover, Bank of America is pleased to be the Lead Sponsor of the 2009 43rd Annual Orientation Program and Career Forum in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Š2008 Bank of America Corporation



ISSUE 10 // FALL 2008 //





The first MexicanAmerican mayor of a major U.S. city discusses underrepresented populations in corporate America and more.

Peter Aranda discusses the concept of ethnicity.





Sean Senhouse recalls his journey from the Caribbean to The Consortium.



The University of Texas at Austin appoints a new dean and other developments at our Member Schools.

Learn how you can stay involved.



Consortium corporate sponsors recognize outstanding employees, are rewarded for their diversity efforts and support global service projects.

Two first-year students met at the Orientation Program and bonded over their passion for finance.

A Member School representative, a Consortium alumna and a current student debate whether America is colorblind.


22 STUDENT AND ALUMNI REPORT Read about the professional and personal accomplishments of current Consortium students and alumni.


28 TO WHOM MUCH IS GIVEN Geraldine Gallashaw sets an example for giving back.


40 ORIENTATION PROGRAM PICTORIAL Highlights from the 2008 Orientation Program in Dallas, Texas.

55 CLASS OF 2010 STUDENT PROFILE An overview of The Consortium Class of 2010.


13 BOOK REVIEW Keith Wyche mentors minorities on getting ahead in his book Good is Not Enough.

56 JEFF FRIDAY Alumnus Jeff Friday discusses his personal crusade to make Hollywood more diverse.

14 HR PERSPECTIVE Best Buy breaks free from the cubicle.

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OUR VISION IN, the magazine of The Consortium, covers diversity issues in business. The mission is to energize our constituents and keep them connected to each other and our mission of promoting diversity in American business. We publish lively and insightful articles, interviews and profiles on relevant issues, ideas, people and news. THE CONSORTIUM’S MISSION The mission of The Consortium for Graduate Study in Management, an alliance of leading American business schools and some of our country’s top corporations, is to enhance diversity in business education and leadership by helping to reduce the serious underrepresentation of African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans in both our member schools’ enrollments and the ranks of management. We will achieve this mission by recruiting for graduate business education qualified U.S. citizens and U.S. permanent residents from these underrepresented groups, as well as other persons who can demonstrate a commitment to The Consortium’s mission and can best assist The Consortium in pursuing this mission. AFFILIATIONS The Consortium is a proud affiliate of the National Black MBA Association and the National Society of Hispanic MBAs. IN magazine is published three times a year

IN MAGAZINE A publication of The Consortium


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Peter J. Aranda III, Executive Director and CEO

EDITOR IN CHIEF Janice Wells-White MANAGING EDITOR Elizabeth Macanufo CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Ryan Brown José Calunga Miriam Chapman Melanie Featherstone Joan Johnson Gosier Elizabeth Macanufo David Wooten CREATIVE DIRECTOR Gretchen Land DESIGNER Cheryl Bonnett OP & STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Wiley Price DEVELOPMENT & ADVERTISING Miriam Chapman MEMBER SCHOOLS Carnegie Mellon University Dartmouth College Emory University Indiana University – Bloomington University of Michigan – Ann Arbor New York University University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Rochester University of Southern California The University of Texas at Austin University of Virginia Washington University in St. Louis University of Wisconsin – Madison Yale University

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Please send letters to the editor to Select letters will be published in future issues.

314-877-5500. The magazine is complimentary to all Consortium constituents.



Carmel McCain, Manager Karen Stocking, Manager David P. Tucker, Receptionist Fund Development Monica Black, Manager Miriam Chapman, Manager Student and Alumni Relations Rachel Knafo, Manager Erica Reddick, Coordinator Program Administration Janice Wells-White, Vice President COMMUNICATIONS

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Copyright © 2008 IN magazine

Stacy Abeles, Manager



Having Native-American and Mexican roots, I felt constantly conscious of how I fit into society. Today, though, people with multiple ethnic backgrounds are common. As the African-American, Hispanic-American, Asian-American and other immigrant populations grow in the U.S., it is clear that our country will become even more of a melting pot. With these growing minority groups, diversity and inclusion are now greater priorities. We are eager to continue our goal of increasing the number of underrepresented individuals in leadership positions within American business. Over the past 40 years, we have, admittedly, encountered obstacles while trying to achieve our mission. Shortly after I started as executive director and chief executive officer of The Consortium, I confronted a challenge directly. While the Supreme Court and individual states evaluated affirmative action policies regarding higher education, we assessed our own diversity guidelines. I spent my days during the first weeks of 2004 studying the United States Constitution, something I was never required to do as an executive in corporate America.

Together with The Consortium’s Board of Trustees, council of deans and legal counsels from our Member Schools, we determined to become a more inclusive organization, encouraging anyone who can best assist us in pursuing our mission to apply to The Consortium. Today, due to this effort, we are a stronger organization. As an organization, we will continue to work toward diversifying corporate America and The Consortium community. I encourage you, in your professional life, to consider how inclusion can help your career. Building a diverse network will help you understand differing perspectives. Remaining aware of varying view points will greatly enhance your leadership skills. I applied this thinking throughout my career by finding both mentors who looked like me and those who did not. As we are poised to increase diversity in business, we must continue setting an example of inclusive behavior. In this issue, we are continuing the conversation about ethnicity and how it will be defined in America in the years to come. Henry Cisneros, whose speech resonated with those present at the 2008 Orientation Program, shares his views on the future ethnic landscape of America and how it will impact business. We profile two individuals, current student Sean Senhouse and Corporate Advisory Board member Geraldine Gallashaw, who personify our commitment to diversity. Providing a perspective from the entertainment industry, Consortium alumnus Jeff Friday discusses how minorities are portrayed in film and television. We would like to invite you to join the discussion. Please forward your responses and reactions to these articles or the magazine as a whole to Selected letters to the editor will be published in the next issue. I look forward to hearing from you.

Peter J. Aranda III Executive Director and CEO The Consortium

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CONSORTIUM NEWS THOMAS W. GILLIGAN APPOINTED DEAN OF THE MCCOMBS SCHOOL OF BUSINESS Dr. Thomas W. Gilligan, the E. Morgan Stanley Chair in Business Administration and professor of finance and business economics at the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business in Los Angeles, has been appointed dean of the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin. “There is no question that the McCombs School of Business has the potential to be one of the truly top business schools in the world, and Thomas Gilligan has the ability and skills to take us in that direction,” said Dr. Michael Granof, a professor in the McCombs School of Business and the head of the dean selection committee. “Tom Gilligan is a visionary leader,” said William Powers Jr., president of The University of Texas at Austin. “In cooperation with our outstanding faculty, he will take the McCombs School to a new level of distinction.” Gilligan said his family is excited to join The University of Texas at Austin community. “I am honored and invigorated by the prospect of leading the McCombs School of Business to even more accomplishments and greater prominence,” Gilligan said.

Gilligan, who received his Bachelor of Arts degree with honors from the University of Oklahoma in Norman and doctor’s degree in economics from Washington University in St. Louis, has held positions at the University of Southern California as vice dean for undergraduate and doctoral education and chair of the Department of Finance and Business Economics. He also has been a visiting professor at the J.L. Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., and at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business in Stanford, Calif. Gilligan’s areas of interest are microeconomics, applied price theory, industrial organization, antitrust economics and public choice. Prior to his first academic position as an assistant professor of economics at California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, in 1984-1987, Gilligan served four years as a Russian linguist in the United States Air Force. From 1982-1983, he was a staff economist on President Ronald Reagan’s Council of Economic Advisers.

PRESIDENT BUSH APPOINTS ROSS PROFESSOR Dana Muir, the Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of Business Law at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business, has been appointed by President George W. Bush to the Advisory Committee to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC). Her term expires in February 2011. The PBGC is a federal corporation created under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). It currently guarantees payment of basic pension benefits earned by 44 million American workers and retirees participating in more than 30,000 private-sector-defined benefit pension plans—those that promise to pay a specified monthly benefit at retirement, commonly based on salary and years on the job. The PBGC Advisory Committee carries out several specific responsibilities outlined by ERISA, 6


including advising on PBGC investment policies and procedures, the trusteeship of terminated plans and other matters. Each member of the PBGC Advisory Committee represents the interests of either the general public, employers or employees. Muir was appointed to represent the general public. Muir specializes in employment, compensation and benefits law. She is editor in chief of the annual supplement to the journal Employee Benefits Law, was a delegate to the first and second White House/Congressional National Summit on Retirement Savings and has served as a member of the Department of Labor’s Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans.

OLIN BUSINESS SCHOOL FORMS ALLIANCE WITH TOP MANAGEMENT SCHOOL IN INDIA The Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis and the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta (IIMC) announced the creation of a partnership designed to advance research, teaching and cultural understanding. The collaboration opens opportunities for students and faculty at both institutions. The schools plan to organize joint programs in business and industry management training. The agreement facilitates the creation of joint publications, conferences and research projects. It also establishes new and innovative exchange programs for faculty and students. “We are very excited about our new connection with the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta,” said Mahendra Gupta, Ph.D., dean of the Olin Business School. “Both schools excel in business education and research, and the ability

to join forces will strengthen our reputations as global leaders.” The institutions are already planning for an international immersion program—a capstone experience for IIMC’s Postgraduate Program in Management for Executives. The Indian students will come to St. Louis for four weeks to attend classes at Olin and undertake consulting projects or internships with area firms. “This kind of exchange program is invaluable to our students,” Gupta said. “It will expose them to a different culture, help them understand international business practice and consider cross-cultural management in an Indian business context. It is an experience that will prove invaluable to our executive students’ ability to thrive in the global marketplace.”

SIMON GRADUATE SCHOOL OF BUSINESS CREATES CENTER FOR LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT The Simon Graduate School of Business at the University of Rochester has established a new Center for Leadership Development. The Center is the first of its kind in the nation to include a required Management Communication course based on the theory that excellent communication skills are key to being a leader in the business world. Under the umbrella of the Center for Leadership Development, the Richard Sands Leadership Lecture Series brings prominent speakers in the field to discuss leadership with Simon School students. “Since the Simon School is the place ‘Where Thinkers Become Leaders,’ it is fitting that the School has created a new Center for Leadership Development,” says Dean Mark Zupan. “The goal of the Center is to realize William E. Simon’s

vision of the School as ‘a leader and a path breaker in higher education.’” The Center’s mission is to provide a focus for understanding the essence of leadership. “The Center is new, and we are reaching out and trying different things,” says Daniel H. Struble, senior lecturer in business communication and area coordinator, business communication. “Our goal is to expose students to the mechanics and ethics of leadership.”

FALL 2008 >




American Airlines will serve as the title sponsor of the Organization of Black Airline Pilots (OBAP) 32nd Annual Convention, where retired Captain Dave Harris will be honored for being the first African American to fly for a commercial airline. Harris, 73, retired from American Airlines in 1994 after more than 30 years of service. After rejections from several other major airlines at the time, Harris wanted to avoid any misunderstanding down the road. Following his interview with American, Harris recalls, “I felt compelled to tell [the interviewer] I was black.” The chief pilot who conducted the interview responded, “This is American Airlines and we don’t care if you’re black, white or chartreuse, we only want to know, can you fly the plane?” Harris began training with American Airlines on December 3, 1964, preparing to pilot the airline’s DC-6 aircraft. American Airlines today has one of the most diverse flight crew rosters in the industry. American and its regional affiliate, American Eagle Airlines, together employ 163 AfricanAmerican pilots, some of whom are also female pilots. “Captain Harris is a role model among African Americans who have since followed his footsteps to work in the commercial airline industry,” said Captain Mark Hettermann, American Airlines chief pilot. “His 30 years of dedicated service should serve as an inspiration to all Americans – African American and otherwise.”


ExxonMobil Corporation announced a $3.5 million grant to the Global Health Group at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), to expand its core support for an unprecedented malaria elimination effort in southern Africa. “To win the fight against malaria, we must attack the disease on many fronts,” said Rex W. Tillerson, chairman and chief executive officer. “ExxonMobil is committed to this battle, which is why we’re doing everything we are—from helping to develop new drugs, facilitating the delivery of insecticide-treated bed nets to places where they are desperately needed and supporting programs that prevent the spread of the disease.” The UCSF Global Health Group and its partners currently provide significant support to Botswana and Swaziland in the development of strategic plans to eliminate malaria from those countries. The Group will use today’s funding from ExxonMobil to build on this support and expand it to additional southern African countries such as Namibia and Zanzibar. This work, conducted in partnership with the Clinton Foundation, is a cornerstone of the Global Health Group’s Malaria Elimination Initiative, which seeks to eliminate the disease in several countries around the world, working inward from the natural global borders of the disease.


Mattel, Inc., the world’s largest toymaker, announced it has been named as one of 2008’s “Best Places to Work in Los Angeles,” ranking ninth among large-sized companies. The complete list appeared in the Los Angeles Business Journal. Mattel moves up the list in 2008 since ranking 13th in 2007. “This honor reflects Mattel’s strong commitment to providing a great work environment for its employees, because it is their creativity and talent that enables Mattel to design, develop and market fun and innovative toys,” said Alan Kaye, senior vice president of human resources. “We’re pleased that Mattel is recognized among the hundreds of companies considered.” The 2008 “Best Places to Work” countywide awards program is designed to identify the best places of employment in Los Angeles County, benefiting the region’s economy, its work force and businesses. The list is divided into three categories: small-sized companies (12-24 employees), medium-sized companies (25-249 employees) and large-sized companies (250 or more).




Beijing Normal University signed a cooperation agreement with Cargill Investments (China) Ltd to jointly work on education policy research and provide psychotherapy aid for children in the earthquake-affected region of Sichuan Province. The agreement is to implement research on education in the area to promote the healthy growth and development of children and teenagers affected by the disaster. Cargill contributed 3 million RMB to support the research and rehabilitation programs. The ceremony was held at Beijing Normal University. Director of the basic education bureau of the Ministry of Education, Madam Liu Chuan Sheng, chairman of the Education Fund of Beijing Normal University, Mr. Dong Qi, vice chancellor of Beijing Normal University attended the ceremony. Cargill China President, Norwell Coquillard, signed the agreement on behalf of all the employees of Cargill. Madam Liu Chuan Sheng said during the ceremony, “…that during the one hundred years history of the university, it has always shared a common fate with its nation. The university has demonstrated a tradition of patriotism, progress, good faith, simplicity, seeking for truth and innovation. It has always been a paragon of virtue and learning. Beijing Normal University is duty-bound to utilize its educational resources to actively participate in the restoration of education in disaster-stricken areas, to provide professional support for the development of fundamental education and to contribute to the healthy growth of children and teenagers in the disaster stricken areas. Cargill has offered us strong support to continue our mission.” “Our hearts go out to the millions of people impacted by the earthquake, especially the children who have lost their homes and families,” said Coquillard. “We want to play a part to help the Chinese people devastated by the earthquake rebuild their lives. We strongly believe that our donation to the rehabilitation program by Wenchuan Earthquake Taskforce at Beijing Normal University will help these children have a bright and positive future.”


Working Mother magazine announced General Mills, Inc., as one of the “2008 Best Companies for Multicultural Women” for the fifth consecutive year. “It’s an honor to be consistently recognized by Working Mother for our commitment to recruiting, retaining and advancing women of color,” said Kelly Baker, vice president of corporate diversity for General Mills. “We find that assembling, developing and listening to diverse teams lead to better innovation, insights and products for our consumers around the world.” Profiled in the June issue of Working Mother magazine, General Mills is recognized for offering comprehensive resources for multicultural women. “We salute the ‘2008 Best Companies for Multicultural Women’ for leading by example and providing corporate America with a new benchmark for diversity and inclusion,” said Carol Evans, chief executive officer, Working Mother Media. “Just as our nation has made history with this year’s presidential primaries, we challenge corporate America to pay attention to issues of race and gender and to benchmark their own work against our winners.” Specifically, General Mills was applauded by Working Mother for its leadership support of inclusiveness and mentoring resources at work. The company’s seven employee networks provide multicultural women with a forum for identifying resources, sharing experiences and networking with other multicultural women throughout the company. The complete “2008 Best Companies for Multicultural Women” special report – including profiles of the winning companies and stories on diversity in corporate America – appeared in the June issue of Working Mother.

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Empowering Visionaries.


ABOVE AND BEYOND Keith R. Wyche tells you how to do your best when good is not enough. Good Is Not Enough and Other Unwritten Rules for Minority Professionals by Keith R. Wyche with Sonia Alleyne

IN Recommended Reading More books on business and the environment: n The Success Principles by Jack Canfield n Cracking the Corporate Code by Price M. Cobbs and Judith L. Turnock n Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office by Lois P. Frankel n What Got You Here Won’t Get YouThere by Marshall Goldsmith with Mark Reiter n How to Succeed in Business Without Being White by Earl G. Graves n Breaking the Bamboo Ceiling by Jane Hyun n LatinoTalent by Robert Rodriguez n Minority Rules by Kenneth Arroyo Roldan and Gary M. Stern n Without Excuses by Joe Watson n The Power of a Positive No by William Ury

Keith R. Wyche aimed to attend a private high school in Cleveland, but the principal twice refused him, suggesting his mother save her money and buy a new refrigerator. She ignored the advice and continued investing in her son. In turn, Wyche defied expectations, pursuing a career which eventually led to his current position as president of U.S. operations for Pitney Bowes Management Services. The 25-year veteran of Ameritech, AT&T, IBM and other major corporations shares how he rose to the top, and how you can do the same. Throughout the book, Wyche draws on examples from his own life and presents case studies based on his peers to best illustrate his points. Summarizing each chapter, Wyche gives practical coaching tips for readers to integrate into their career plans. Although his advice is relevant to anyone seeking advancement, he specifically targets a minority audience. Wyche communicates the realities of working in corporate America and how to navigate the tricky terrain. His first recommendation to readers is to familiarize themselves with their professional setting. Wyche suggests assessing your needs to determine your optimum corporate culture. He also believes job seekers should evaluate potential places of employment on their diversity initiatives. Once you have investigated possible places to work, Wyche believes corporate climbers should then evaluate themselves. Emphasizing the importance of professionalism, Wyche believes that “Everyone has a personal brand…The most successful professionals, however, are intimately involved in creating and managing their brands.” Borrowing David Samuel’s four phases to professional branding, Wyche encourages his readers to plan by assessing strengths, developing areas of weakness, promoting personal value propositions and connecting by building professional relationships. Maintaining visibility within a company, Wyche feels, is a strategy to get ahead. Each employee, he argues, is under constant scrutiny by upper management. Although it may

seem obvious, Wyche reminds his readers that a promotion is dependent on colleagues recognizing your work. Although getting ahead is the ultimate goal, Wyche recognizes that a lateral job change or finding a position within another company may yield the best long-term results. Wyche stresses that “there are no second chances” for minorities and encourages ethical behavior at all times. He also emphasizes having a well-rounded business skill set, including excellent communication abilities and solid financial acumen. Most importantly, Wyche believes that individuals need to be mentally and emotionally ready to fill C-suite seats. He acknowledges that women face a “double whammy” and need to overcome a gender, as well as a minority, bias. Even when reaching the upper echelons of corporate life, one needs to remain relevant by becoming a “continuous learner.” Implied through his lessons throughout the book, Wyche values mentors and sponsors to assist minorities in navigating workplaces. He describes mentors as the “quarterback to the end goal” and recommends identifying executives with experience and influence. Organizations, such as The Consortium, are an excellent network in which to discover a mentor. Wyche concludes his book with big picture theories. As he states, “There is one more important lesson that we would like to share and that is the importance for successful minority managers of finding ways to give back.” He recalls his own struggles searching for significance, despite reaching his goal of president. Though his material needs were met, and then some, he felt compelled to “help develop the next generation of leadership.” This best practices book for minorities in corporate America serves as a useful guide to those looking to achieve success. Throughout the book, Wyche conveys that he’s rooting for the reader, whether you’re a mailroom clerk or a senior vice president. He knows what you’re going through, and he shares his formula for achievement. He encourages his audience to “never give up!”

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In 2003, a leader within Best Buy Company, Inc., asked human resources professional Cali Ressler to conduct an “Employer of Choice” survey for 300 employees. The survey results indicated that the group wanted their supervisors to trust their ability to competently perform their duties. Other recurring result themes indicated high levels of stress and low levels of motivation. Best Buy’s employees struggled on a daily basis, necessitating a big change. The Best Buy leader commissioned Ressler to create a program that would implement flexibility to enable workplace freedoms, creating and exhibiting that trust the employees desired.



Ressler, together with co-worker Jody Thompson, began contemplating alternative work schedules. The company tested flexible schedules for six months but determined that the benefit was not resonating enough with employees. In 2004, the pair created an innovative and unconventional program: Results-Only Work Environment (ROWE). ROWE allowed employees, from executives to administrative assistants, to work whenever and wherever they wished, as long as they accomplished their goals. According to Liz Beckius, culture program manager, the transition started slowly. Twenty percent of the corporate employees initially joined the ROWE program. Managers who realized the Best Buy culture needed a drastic change were among the first to convert their departments. Reluctant managers were soon won over when presented with the data on employee satisfaction and efficiency. Now, over 85 percent have migrated. Beckius remains pleased with the results. “There has been no negative impact from ROWE. It sounds like a line, but it’s true.” Citing increased employee engagement and retention, an increase in potential employee attraction and an improved community image, Beckius believes that ROWE’s affect on the company has been only positive. Many times she has heard first-hand how ROWE helps employees balance their personal and professional lives. “People are able to spend more time with their children and are able to care for elderly parents.” ROWE affects employee work paths as well. Beckius witnesses rapid promotions as workers focus on results and are evaluated on achieving goals and not putting in office face time. Emphasizing efficiency, one manager had an “a ha” moment when he realized that his direct reports falsely claimed to have enough work to keep them busy to avoid getting more assignments. ROWE changed that attitude. Explains Beckius, “People no longer think that being more efficient just creates more work.

etermined Thompson d Ressler and WE. Here’s a sample: O 13 rules for R . ng is optional • Every meeti ing any l levels stop do • People at al r time, a waste of thei is at th ty vi ti ac ’s time or the the customer ey. company’s mon hours out how many ab s lk ta y od • Nob they work. t how judgment abou • There is no end their time. employees sp to ve the freedom • Employees ha they want. work any way

We’re more upfront about what work has no value, and we’re getting rid of wasteful work.” Employees, responsible for when they choose to work, are more efficient and are more motivated to become high performers. Each individual can tailor the workday to suit his or her needs. Fundamentally, Beckius believes, ROWE is about more than just the flexibility to work from your corner coffee shop. “In order to make these programs successful, there needs to be a fundamental culture shift. We need a mental shift as to how work works, what we value, how we get work done and how we value our people.” Although flexibility is a component, she realizes “it’s bigger than work for mommies or part-time positions.” Inspired by ROWE,

other corporations are getting on the bandwagon. Human resources professionals from companies located in the same city as Best Buy headquarters, Minneapolis, Minn., have contacted Beckius looking for more information about ROWE. Excited to be leading a work-life revolution, Beckius believes Best Buy’s initiatives are just the beginning. “Our workplace beliefs will be different in 30 years,” she says. “Dilbert will be out of business.” For now, she’s taking advantage of the flexibility her position provides. If you happen to find yourself on the Best Buy corporate headquarters campus, don’t look for her in a cubicle. During the work week, as well as the weekend, she spends her time baking, scrapbooking and gardening with her husband and two-year old son.

Liz Beckius with her two-year old son.

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POST-RACIAL ERA IN AMERICA? In January 2008, NPR kicked off a national conversation by asking: is this a new post-racial era in America? On “All Things Considered,” senior news analyst Daniel Schorr discussed the buzzword. With Senator Barack Obama’s wins in the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primary, The New Yorker and The Economist also pondered if we are living in a world void of racial judgments. We turned the question over to a Consortium alumna, a representative from a Member University and a current student. Each offers his or her perspective on whether our society is now colorblind, or if it ever will be.



from Joan Johnson Gosier



orty years ago the winds of change blew in promises and hope of a new beginning in each living American’s history. Descendants of freed black slaves were inspired to achieve heights and to launch a marathon race to close the artificially-imposed gaps in civil privileges. Hurdles were seen as temporary barriers. Given an equal opportunity, many within this pioneering Baby Boomer group seemed to aspire to reach heights that were historically limited to only a very few privileged individuals in a pre-civil rights era black society. In 2008, many of the awards from this marathon race can be seen on alumni rosters at prestigious institutions of higher learning, on various corporate advisory boards and the list of retired “Who’s Who in America” recognitions. So no wonder that in 2008, we could dare inquire: are we living in a post-racial society? In order to respond to this question and to project out into the future, I would like to analyze numerical data, segment the data into clusters and review potential trends that seem to be driving the trajectory within these clusters. We can only reap what we have sown. Every seed planted is not promised to yield marketable fruit. But yet one can carefully

Americans who say they’re biracial or multiracial will more than triple from 5 million to 16 million people by 2050. Some sociologists already have scrapped “minority” for terms such as “dominant” and “nondominant group” to discuss race and ethnicity,” Sawyer said.

In addition, scientists who study brain development continue to confirm that the earliest relationships and experiences that a baby has help set the stage for life-long emotional and other competencies. Yet investments in high-quality infant and toddler care, including support to informal care providers, lag, and state policies to support parents are notably inconsistent. According to recent poverty data, it is reported that only 36 percent of African-American babies are living in a family not low-income. This compares with 76 percent of Asian babies and 70 percent of white babies who are not low-income. In other words, there are 1.2 million black babies, 1.25 million Asian babies and 9 million white babies who are age zero to five years-old according to recent poverty data, who are not living low-income. Food for thought: if poverty and lack of knowledge and/or exposure cause one to grow up in a certain way, over time that

Love never fails. We all start off small.

Joan Johnson Gosier is a 1996 MBA from the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor. She is co-founder and partner of HBCU kidz, Inc., a Fort Lauderdale-based infant, toddler, preschool gift boutique ( She has been quoted in publications such as More Black Success, Urban Profile, Birmingham Times and Courier.The Gosiers are also the owners of, a unique online gift marketplace for children of color. Joan and her family work as a team to build the brand one family at a time.

examine each sprouted seed and quickly eyeball how the crop is beginning to fare overall. With no sun, fertile soil or rain, there will be no healthy sprout; with no healthy sprout, there will be no plant; with no plant, there will be no fruit to reap in the expected future. One can quickly check out the living conditions that are reality for the majority of our infants and toddlers to see that our sprouts are in jeopardy. Without a deliberate and strategic increase in love, nurturing, education, food and shelter to change the trend of social despair and inequity, our ability to reap the promised rewards of a post-racial society will be greatly determined by how well we tend to our current garden. According to the August 14, 2008, Miami Herald front page: “…in a few decades, all Americans will be minorities…All the changes will show up first and fastest among children, less than half of whom will be non-Hispanic whites by 2023…If we don’t invest in educating and training African-American kids, immigrants and Latino kids, we won’t have a middle class,” said Mark Sawyer, the director of the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Politics at the University of California at Los Angeles. “We’ll have a very, very poor disposable class that’s largely black or brown.” The study predicts that the number of

becomes a cycle of trauma and hopelessness. Can we look proudly in the mirror and confirm that these seeds we see sprouting in our extended families are enjoying the balance of love, nurturing, education, food and shelter provided to us during our formative years? Love never fails. We all start off small. As well-equipped MBAs, we have the power and the opportunity to individually and collectively problem-solve and increase the probabilities of an abundant harvest. We must become our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers and avoid sticking our heads in the sand that they are not our babies, they are not our neighborhoods or they are not our problems. Simply based on the numbers, the news, the media and the marketplace, I believe we are once again in a critical human investment period in history. Unless and until the children zero to six years-old are enjoying the advantages of a post-racial society, a society that proactively removes all barriers of cultural group advancement and simultaneously welcomes individual contributions of gifts and talents, I find it challenging to imagine marketable fruit for reaping by year 2028. Our post-racial society is really only as strong as our weakest child.

FALL 2008 >


from David Wooten


David Wooten is an associate professor at the Ross School of Business, a Consortium alumnus (University of Michigan – Ann Arbor ’87) and a member of the board of trustees. He thanks Lola Ali-Oke and Nadirah Saleem for their helpful suggestions on an early draft of this commentary.




hen Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. shared a dream that his “four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character,” he challenged a nation to embark on the journey toward a post-racial society. Forty-five years later, Senator Barack Obama’s historic presidential nomination has prompted hopeful media commentators to ask, “Are we there yet?” As is usually the case with “Are we there yet” questions, this one has been asked much too early and a bit too often. One needs only to look for signs or ask for directions to discover that, despite considerable progress, the nation is a long way from this utopian society, and its citizens do not agree where to find it. A recent Wall Street Journal article highlights the great distance the nation has traveled during a time when visible drivers of racial progress were arrested. The article identifies the rise of Reagan conservatism, court reversals on

Democrats, in a recent study conducted with Stanford University reported negative views toward blacks. These respondents were significantly less likely to vote for Obama than were their counterparts without such negative views. Are signs of racial bias this prevalent in post-racial societies? Michigan State Police recently were called to investigate racial slurs spray-painted on an Obama campaign billboard along Highway 23 near Ann Arbor. Ironically, the first major sign of our proximity to a post-racial society has begun prompting vivid signs of our distance from it. No, we are not there yet. If the signs are discouraging, then ask for directions. Of course, the problem is getting agreement about important landmarks. Advocates of a “colorblind” society presumably point to the day when people no longer process racial information. From this standpoint, we will never get to a post-racial society as long as election coverage continues to include

If the signs are discouraging, then ask for directions. Of course, the problem is getting agreement about important landmarks. affirmative action and busing among the setbacks that occurred during the 1980s. However, according to the article, these old drivers were replaced by such silent engines as more integrated workplaces, a growing black middle class and falling crime rates that brought about more frequent interactions between races, more favorable attitudes about blacks and declining racial fears among whites. The article cites the elections of black mayors and governors in predominantly white cities and states throughout the country and the more than 20 percent of Americans who report having a relative married to someone of another race as major milestones passed along the way. But, is the nomination of Senator Barack Obama a sign that we now live in a post-racial society? No, it is a sign of progress, not arrival, much like the signs for Chicago that appear on I-94 west in metropolitan Detroit. No, we are not there yet. At some point in any long journey, weary travelers will begin to look for answers to the “Are we there yet” question. Unfortunately, travelers on this particular journey will find signs that the race-conscious society in the rearview mirror is actually closer than it appears. For example, one-third of white

discussions of Obama’s race and opinion polls continue to report voter preferences by race. Champions of diversity will point to the day when every major institution understands, respects and accommodates differences among races. From this standpoint, it is useful to process racial information, but not in a way that disadvantages a racial group or its individual members. Results of the Stanford study suggest that this landmark is nowhere to be found. Opponents of affirmative action, like Ward Connerly, are likely to point to a different landmark but, some would argue, in a very different direction. From this perspective, policies once viewed as necessary drivers of racial progress are seen as unwanted signs of racial bias. To them, a post-racial society cannot be reached until these so-called “racial preferences” are abandoned. In short, given the amount of time and distance we’ve traveled in search of our post-racial destination, it is natural to ask, “Are we there yet?” However, based on the negative signs and confusing directions available at this point in the journey, I’m sure we’re not there yet, but I’m not sure if or when we will arrive.

from Melanie Featherstone



he answer to the question, “Are we living in a post-racial society?” is not a simple one. America has seen advances for people of color across many industries: entertainment, business and politics, to name a few. In the entertainment industry, artists such as Jay-Z, P. Diddy and Master P crossed over into mainstream and succeeded in being their own bosses. In corporate America, the recent successes of African-American senior executives, such as Time Warner Chairman of the Board Richard D. Parsons or former Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer E. Stanley O’Neal, demonstrated leadership that turned around struggling businesses.1 Some mainstream pundits would argue that Senator Barack Obama’s capturing the nomination of a major political party for the presidency of the United States would indicate that America has moved

like INROADS—it is not sufficient progress. The eliminations of affirmative action programs in California and Texas were themselves the result of racial biases of lawmakers—the belief that somehow affirmative action was implanted as a way to fulfill quotas. In California, the impact of eliminating affirmative action was so devastating to the enrollment of minorities that the University of California system decided in 2001 to reverse the ban on affirmative action. In fact, in 2007 among Hispanics of all races aged 25 and older, only 14 percent of women and 12 percent of men held at least a bachelor’s degree, while those numbers were 31 and 33 percent, respectively, for their white counterparts.3 So far-reaching is the lack of accessible higher education to Latinos, in particular, that companies worry that they will not be able to fill the positions needed to grow their businesses and meet the growing

The disparities that exist in education for children of color versus education for their mainstream counterparts are so wide that there will be far-reaching implications into the future.

Currently a first-year student at Indiana University – Bloomington, Melanie will participate in the Consumer Marketing Academy at Kelley School of Business. With her experience in marketing, manufacturing, technology and business strategy at four Fortune 150 companies, she plans to hone her skills for marketing management. In the local Benton Harbor community, she has been active in producing the Ms. Delta Doll pageant for middle school girls and raising funds for the Benton Harbor High School football team.

beyond its racist past. Although one could presume these facts as evidence of America’s blindness to the skin color of its sons and daughters, I argue the opposite. The disparities that exist in education for children of color versus education for their mainstream counterparts are so wide that there will be far-reaching implications into the future. In April 2008, America’s Promise Alliance, an organization founded by former Secretary of State Colin Powell, reported that the average graduation rate was less than 50 percent for public high schools across the United States.2 What was particularly interesting was that the graduation rates in urban areas (i.e., where there is a higher concentration of people of color) were far less than the rates for students in suburban and rural high schools. The lowest rates were reported in Detroit, Cleveland and Indianapolis at less than 40 percent. The rates in these cities are just symptomatic of the subtle role that race plays in educating children of color. Furthermore, although some necessary progress has been made in making higher education more accessible to people of color— through the work of undergraduate organizations

demographic of Latino consumers. In other words, the implication is that there will be more jobs available to Latinos than companies will be able to fill. In conclusion, the lack of opportunity to a better quality of education for children in kindergarten through 12th grade creates the first disparity in race. Secondly, as more minorities are prone to drop out of school at a higher rate than their white counterparts, the gap widens and further perpetuates itself up the continuum of higher learning. Later in life, these disparities can be seen as differences in earning potential over the course of the next 50 years. Unless the necessary steps are taken to correct the educational systems at the very elemental levels, America will not be able to achieve a post-racial society.

1. 2. http://www.foxnews.comstory/0,2933,344190,00.html 3.

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Richard Velazquez ’03 Richard was recently engaged to Christine Chen, host of the weekly business show “About the Money with Christine Chen” on PBS in Seattle. Richard serves as the president of the National Society of Hispanic MBAs (NSHMBA) Seattle Chapter. Richard is also the product planning manager for Xbox, defining the long-term product road map and strategy for hardware in the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft.

Tuesday Tibbs ’09 Tuesday participates in the Black Business Association, the Tepper Women in Business Association and the National Black MBA Association (NBMBAA) in Pittsburgh. She serves as the alumni and career opportunity executive officer for the Tepper Student Government, and she was recently featured in the July 2008 Black Enterprise magazine. She was a recipient of the NBMBAA Graduate Scholarship and plans to participate in the 2008 NBMBAA Case Competition.

co-authored several scientific publications and is a member of Zonta International, whose mission is to advance the status of women worldwide.

Kacy Gambles ’10 As a first-year student, Kacy eagerly looks forward to actively participating in numerous student-run organizations. She seeks to hold a position on the Tuck 2010 Student Board, as well as participate in the Finance Club, Tuckmasters and the Tuck African-American Business Association. Kacy is pursuing a career in private wealth.


Kia N. Gaines ’09 Starting her second year in the program, Kia serves as chair of the Student Government Community Outreach Committee, vice president of the Black Business Association, admissions tour guide and a member of the Student-Faculty Activities Committee, which serves to foster increased interaction between students and professors through programs and events. Kia just completed a summer internship in healthcare management consulting and is pursuing a career in this area.



Lisha Davis ’10 A first-year student at Tuck, Lisha participates in the General Management Club, Women in Financial Services Organization, National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors and Millennium Momentum Foundation, geared toward diversity education and career advancement. Lisha is currently pursuing a career in strategy and leadership development and is also a Certified Financial Planner™.

Cathleen Enriquez ’10 Cathleen is pursuing a career in general management and participating in the Hispanic-American Student Association, Net Impact, Women in Business and Healthcare Clubs. Cathleen has

Melissa Llarena ’10 Melissa participates in the International Club, Consulting Club, Hispanic-American Student Association and Tuck Skiing and Boarding. Melissa is pursuing a career in global marketing consulting, is a NSHMBA ambassador at Tuck, won the Proctor & Gamble Marketing Case Competition in 2008 and continues to act as a freelance consultant.

Michael Stallworth ’10 Prior to enrolling at Tuck, Michael was a small business manager for SCORE! Educational Centers. In this position, he led a team of full-time managers and part-time tutors driving academic progress, building confidence and impacting the lives of thousands of local youths. At Tuck, Michael intends to

become involved in the Consulting Club, Net Impact, Tuck African Ancestry Business Association and the Tennis Club. Michael is pursuing opportunities in management consulting. INDIANA UNIVERSITY-BLOOMINGTON

to his current role, Chris served as the vice president of finance supporting the Europe, Middle East and Africa regional sales teams for HP’s Imaging and Printing Group. Chris and his wife Kristina have four children: Maria, Alexander, Christian and Gabriela.

Kern Woods ’09

James González ’95

Kern currently serves as the vice president of Student Affairs for the MBA Association, striving to strengthen student involvement in activities that promote the Kelley brand within the local community, alumni base and around the world. Kern is pursuing a degree in consumer marketing and is also a member of the Black MBA Club and the Kelley Marketing Club.

James was promoted to senior director of strategy and corporate development at Hewlett-Packard Company. He has led the negotiation and execution of multiple acquisitions for HP’s Server and Storage Group ($19 billion in revenue), HP Services ($18 billion in revenue) and HP Software ($3 billion in revenue and 15 acquisitions in the last three years). He will now also oversee mergers and acquisitions for HP’s Personal Systems Group ($40 billion in revenue).

Stephen Freeman ’08 Stephen recently started with Halliburton in the Supply Chain Management Program after completing his IU MBA requirements in São Paulo, Brazil, at Fundação Getulio Vargas. The program consists of five different supply chain roles over two and a half years, where he will gain in-depth knowledge of the oil services industry.

Debbie Forbeck ’00 Debbie started her own company, Vista Marketing Consulting. She is currently developing and executing marketing strategies for life science non-profits and music and arts entities. Her work includes messaging, market research and analysis, public relations, communications and business development.

Carol Phelps ’83 Carol is the recently appointed Consortium Alumni Regional Representative for Atlanta, Ga., and considers the assignment one of her most rewarding opportunities as a Consortium alumna. Carol is a finance manager and recently celebrated her 25th anniversary with IBM in finance in Global Services. Carol is actively engaged in women and youth entrepreneurship in Atlanta and serves on various community boards, geared towards economic development and trade missions in emerging markets. UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN-ANN ARBOR

Eric Winston ’00 After several years working at Ford in product development finance on the Edge and MKX programs, Eric has begun a new assignment in manufacturing profit analysis, where he will assume responsibility for leading the headcount reporting process.

Chris Gomez ’97 Recently, Chris took a new role within Hewlett-Packard Company, as the vice president of finance supporting the North America and South America regional sales team for HP’s Imaging and Printing Group. Chris is responsible for providing financial support, controllership and business partnership across the organization. Prior

André Cary ’09 André was on the executive board of the Arts Enterprise Club and is currently serving as Corporate Relations Committee chair of the Black Business Students Association for Ross School of Business. He was selected by Cargill Incorporated to be one of their three interns and worked on the company’s bio-industrial strategy. André is pursuing a career in product management or internal consulting.

Erik Gomez ’09 Erik interned this summer at American Century Investments as an investments analyst and passed Level I of the CFA

exam. He also will serve as president of the Michigan Investment Association for the upcoming school year.

Emily Reyna ’09 Emily is a third-year, dual-degree student in the Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise. Erb combines a MBA from the Ross School of Business with a MS from the School of Natural Resources and Environment. With this dual-degree, Emily’s career focus is to work in corporate environmental strategy. Emily serves as co-president of Ross Net Impact, an organization dedicated to delivering positive social and environmental impact through business.

David Garcia ’08 After sitting for the New York State Bar Exam this past July, David recently joined the Investment Banking Division at Credit Suisse. David will be an associate in Credit Suisse’s Mergers & Acquisitions Group in New York City.

Marion Ntiru ’08 Marion recently graduated, traveled around the world and started work at Citi Cards’ Management Associate Program. Her first rotation is in New York in the marketing function under the customer engagement team.

Shara Senior ’08 Shara works as an independent consultant for Ascension Health, the nation’s largest Catholic hospital chain. She is helping Ascension start a new community-based business, focused on improving health for people in the city of Flint, Mich., by following the Base of the Pyramid Protocol.

Alexander Sutton III ’07 In July 2008, Alex was promoted to manager, consumer marketing at Sports Illustrated magazine (Time Inc.), where he oversees automatic renewal and billing efforts for the world’s largest sports magazine. Alex has two direct reports and is responsible for $140 million in revenue.

Kevin Mason ’03 Kevin was named senior financial consultant at Mercedes Benz Financial in

FALL 2008 >


Detroit, Mich. He is primarily responsible for project management, process improvement and financial analysis.

Darys Estrella ’02 Darys was recently honored as a Young Global Leader, a stakeholder group of the World Economic Forum, and has been named by the Stephen M. Ross School of Business to the Alumni Board of Governors. In September, Darys became the first alumna of LaGuardia Community College in Queens, N.Y., to be awarded the President’s Medal, whereby she will deliver the keynote address at the commencement of over 4,000 graduates in Madison Square Garden.

Marsha Kublall ’10 A first-year student, Marsha participates in the Graduate Finance Association, Luxury and Retail Club, Association of Hispanic and Black Business Students and Stern Women in Business. In addition to being a Consortium Fellow, she is a Forte Fellow and a MLT alumna. Marsha is currently pursuing a career in finance, which will enable her to utilize her experience in and passion for retail.

Adepeju Oduye ’10

Kimberlee was named senior director, national advertising at Arby’s Restaurant Group headquartered in Atlanta, Ga. Kimberlee is responsible for providing leadership in the strategy, creative development and production of high impact broadcast, merchandising and interactive creative for the Arby’s system.

Currently a first-year student, Adepeju looks forward to actively participating in the Stern community via organizations such as the Management Consulting Association, Stern Women in Business and the Technology and New Media Group. Adepeju plans to pursue a career in consulting or business development and hopes to offer her services during the school year to organizations such as Prep for Prep, and Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT).

Carlos Toro ’96

Azurée S. Montoute ’06

Carlos is the general manager of his wife’s family business, one of the largest grocery wholesale distributors in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. He was recently named to the board of directors of MIDA, the premier food marketing association in Puerto Rico and COFECC, the largest small business development company in Puerto Rico. He’s married to Ana María and has two children: Mariana, four, and Carlos Oscar, one.

Azurée has recently started a new opportunity with Citigroup as a human resources management associate. She will be working within the Global Cards Business, supporting their talent management and learning and development initiatives. Her focus will be to maximize organization effectiveness through aligning business strategy, structure and employees.

Duane Morton ’89

Alia co-produced the first African American revival of Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof on Broadway at the Broadhurst Theatre in spring 2008. The highest grossing play of the season featured a cast led by Academy Award nominee Terrence Howard, Tony Award winners Phylicia Rashad and Anika Noni Rose and Academy Award nominee and two-time Tony winner James Earl Jones. Renowned director and choreographer Debbie Allen directed the Pulitzer Prize winning classic through its 19 week

Kimberlee Burrows ’00

Duane is the founder and president of High Definition Leadership and has recently added blogging to his toolkit. He anticipates his first book will be released in the first quarter of 2009. Duane helps those in positions of leadership to become better leaders and those who aspire to leadership positions to lay out their path to success. The majority of his clients today are C-Suite level executives, entrepreneurs and students. He also travels for speaking engagements.




Alia Jones ’03

limited engagement. A movie version of the play is in the planning process. U. OF NORTH CAROLINA AT CHAPEL HILL

Ariyah DeSouza ’09 Ariyah interned this summer at Bank of America in eCommerce. During her internship, she co-hosted two events for Charlotte-based Consortium members to strengthen community ties. She returns to Kenan-Flagler as chair of the Gay Lesbian Bi-Sexual Transgendered Association and vice president of events for Net Impact.

Alejandro Roman ’02 Alejandro was named in Diversity MBA Magazine’s list of “Top 100 Under 50 Diverse Executive Leaders.” He is a relationship manager in Vanguard’s Institutional Client Services Group, where he is responsible for managing Vanguard’s relationships with non-profit institutions across the U.S. Alejandro’s client relationships represent more than $2.1 billion in assets invested with Vanguard. He also serves as president emeritus of the Philadelphia Chapter of NSHMBA. UNIVERSITY OF ROCHESTER

Azara Turaki ’03 Azara was accepted into the MBA Enterprise Corps and is currently in southern Sudan for 14 months. In this role, she provides business consulting and training courses to small- and medium-sized businesses to improve local income and economic stability. Prior to this, Azara worked in the banking sector: first as a finance officer, and second as a loan officer geared towards underprivileged neighborhoods.


Carlos Chait ’09 During his first year, Carlos was elected student government representative and appointed to the Graduate and Professional Student Senate. Concurrently, he attended Loyola Law School, earning a JD in May 2008. Now, he serves as chief community officer of the executive committee and is a member of the 2008 APEC Business Advisory Council Team, researching trade liberalization. Carlos interned at Deloitte Tax in their Research and Development Group this summer.

Eduardo Santana ’06 Eduardo has been assigned to manage the redevelopment of two regional retail centers for Forest City Enterprises’ Hispanic Retail Group. In this capacity, he will manage the redesign, leasing, construction and marketing efforts for these Hispanic-themed centers located in California and Arizona. Eduardo also manages predevelopment efforts for pipeline projects in California, Utah and Texas for Forest City’s West Coast Commercial Division.

Cheyenne Valenzuela ’05 Cheyenne is president and founder of C.enne.V, a plus size clothing line catering to sizes 12 to 24. C.enne.V is distributed both online and in specialty boutiques and will soon be carried in major department stores. C.enne.V has been featured on the “Today Show,” “KTLA Morning News,” “The Tyra Banks Show” and in publications, such as Glamour, Real Simple, Variety, La Opinion, Women’s Wear Daily and many others.

Kellee Scott ’97 Kellee is currently senior associate director of MBA Admissions for the USC Marshall MBA program. She is responsible for the full-time program, including strategy, recruiting and diversity. Kellee was recently appointed to The Consortium Board of Directors.

Tim McChristian ’79 Tim was recently elected to the board of directors of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. Tim also serves on the boards of A Better Chance Program as vice chairman and on the Corporate Advisory Board at the Marshall School of Business at USC. Tim is currently a vice president of worldwide sales for the Global Business Partner Organization at IBM. THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN

Ryan Brown ’10 Ryan, who is concentrating in finance, participates in the Graduate Finance Association, Graduate Consulting Group, Black Graduate Business Association and MBA Soccer. Ryan is also the co-founder of The Consortium Finance and Bankers Group, whose goal is to leverage the diversity of its people, curriculum and network into personal and professional development.

Monica Grisales Ruiz ’10 Currently a first-year student, Monica participates in the Graduate Women in Business Club, Hispanic Graduate Business Association and the Graduate Marketing Network. Monica is concentrating on finance and marketing. She was recently named a NSHMBA scholar.

Asia Bribiesca ’98

Jennifer Woods ’10

Asia accepted the role of director of operations for Eclectus Inc., a risk management software firm specializing in banking and construction industry solutions. Asia joined ECL after completing a business process redesign engagement for The Walt Disney Company Information Technology Division in Glendale, Calif.

A current first-year student concentrating in marketing and strategy, Jennifer participates in the Graduate Women in Business Club, Black Graduate Business Association, Graduate Marketing Network and the Graduate Consulting Group. Jennifer has also participated in several career seminars and forums, including Management Leaders for Tomorrow Career Transition and Leadership Seminar and MBA JumpStart.

Jennifer has a passion for music and sings soprano in a small ensemble.

Stephen Villanueva ’93 Stephen’s first book was recently published by Tate Publishing & Enterprises: We Have Been Lied To: Tearing Down the Walls of Christian Wrong Belief and Unbelief. The book is marketed nationwide through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders and other outlets. Stephen now lives in Boulder, Colo. UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA

J. Benjamin Goodman ’10 Ben recently wrapped up a five-year management consulting career at Accenture to begin his MBA program. As a career-switcher, he looks forward to pursuing marketing and general management opportunities within the natural and organic foods industry and healthcare. Ben also sits on the Alumni Advisory Board for the University of Illinois’ Industrial and Enterprise Systems Engineering Department.

Joshua Smith ’97 Josh was promoted to director at TIAA-CREF. He works as a buy-side equity research analyst in the Asset Management Division, covering the domestic insurance sector. TIAA-CREF is the largest variable annuity writer in the world and has more than $400 billion in assets under management.

FALL 2008 >



Peter K. Braxton '08 Peter has joined an established Private Banking Team with Credit Suisse Securities (USA), Chicago, servicing the high net worth needs of individuals and families across the Midwest and beyond. As an associate, Peter provides tailored wealth management solutions and comprehensive investment advice on trading, alternative investments, investment banking, inheritance, trusts and philanthropic foundations based on the specific requirements of his private clients.

Maria Higuerey ’07 Maria joined Microsoft upon graduation as account manager for Health Care and Life Science accounts in the North Central District. Before her one-year anniversary, she accepted a new role as relationship marketing manager, where she focuses on the top-tier accounts engaging chief information officer executives and other C-suite level executives to leverage full use of the Microsoft suite of products and the partnership Microsoft offers. Maria married Daniel O’Hollearn in Evanston, Ill., on August 30, 2008.

Juan M. Orozco ’06 Juan recently graduated from Raytheon Company’s Leadership Development Program, a two-year rotational program designed to develop Raytheon’s next generation of leaders. In addition, Juan received the designation of Certified Purchasing Manager from the Institute for Supply Management. He is currently working as a material program manager for Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems Business based in San Diego, Calif.

Marcelo Neira ’05 Marcelo is growing his company in the renewable energy sector in Peru, South America. Energia Innovadora ( is a player in the small wind-power field in the Andean country. The company increased sales last year and hopes to do well this season as they introduce solar energy and photovoltaic pumping products. Marcelo



also assumed this year the Latin-American sales territory for advertising, banks and consulting companies at Euromonitor International in Chicago.

Jeff Meade ’04 Jeff is managing partner and co-founder of The Reason, a marketing consulting firm specializing in branding and engagement marketing. Leveraging his expertise in brand and consumer insight development, he is responsible for identifying and cultivating new client relationships. With a passion for community service and mentoring, he also serves as board co-chair for Foundation for Second Chances, an after-school program for elementary students in the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Nekisha Williams Omotola ’04 Nekisha and her husband Aaron became the proud parents of a baby girl, Zara, on May 16, 2008. Nekisha is currently the deputy director of marketing for the City of New Orleans. Aaron is a chief resident in orthopaedic surgery at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center.

Brandi Newson Moses ’02 Brandi is a brand manager for Nestlé Purina PetCare Australia. Her responsibilities include growing the BENEFUL dog food franchise and leading new business development for the dog segment. This August, Brandi ran her fourth City to Surf road race, 14 kilometers from downtown Sydney to Bondi Beach. Her number one fans are her two-year-old son Clarke and husband Chris.

Carlos M. Cojulun ’98 Carlos recently joined Del Monte Foods as a senior brand manager, leading the marketing teams for the canned and plastic cup fruit and pineapple businesses.

Ruben Mella ’96 Ruben was named director of investor relations for Anheuser-Busch earlier this year. He is responsible for the successful execution of the investor relations calendar, representing the company as a spokesman with investors and managing the contributions of three professionals in the department.


Adeola Emdin ’08 This summer, Adeola wed her classmate, Duane Woolery. She recently started a brand management position with Colgate-Palmolive.

Michael Scotti ’08 Michael recently joined GLL Real Estate Partners as an asset manager based out of Munich, Germany. He is primarily responsible for financial analysis supporting Western and Eastern Europe.

Charles W. Rawls ’07 Charles is participating in Bank of America’s Leadership Development Program. He currently works as a product manager in Bank of America’s North American Sales & Relationship Management Division. Charles’ responsibilities include managing the cross sales and bundling of the bank’s products through the eCommerce channel. Charles also accepted a seat on the alumni board for his undergraduate alma mater, The University of South Carolina.

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By Miriam Chapman

GERALDINE GALLASHAW, managing director and head of Global Diversity Strategies for The Bank of New York Mellon, has been with the company since 1973. The loyal employee and dedicated humanitarian possesses a selfless spirit. Her commitment to community, to those less fortunate and to helping society as a whole, led The Consortium to present her with the Peter C. Thorp Corporate Leadership Award at the June Orientation Program. Throughout her career, Gallashaw has also managed employee relations, college relations and recruitment. Working in employee relations taught Gallashaw how to coach co-workers. Enjoying the challenge, she found that “giving employees a ‘sounding board’ was a great way to help them figure out their issues and develop solutions. The basis of many problems people have in the workplace is poor communications. Once you get them talking to each other, things start to work themselves out,” said Gallashaw. College recruitment seemed like the next logical step in her career, and it has remained one of her favorite areas. Helping students “make the right connections to get the right job,” Gallashaw has spent much time recruiting on college campuses, or, as she says, “on the ground where the students live.” As a recruiter, Gallashaw measures success three ways: retention, mobility and happiness. Looking back at the number of Consortium Fellows who have found employment with The Bank of New York Mellon, she credits The Consortium with their employment success. “These MBAs benefited from the experience— the exposure and networking. Having come from The Consortium, they were able to figure out their path better,” Gallashaw adds. Continuing on that positive path, the fellows who work for BNY Mellon “found a place where they can grow, have opportunities to do things and be successful.” Outside of the office, community organizations routinely recognize Gallashaw for her service. She dedicates time to several organizations serving a number of underprivileged groups. Included in her long list of volunteer organizations over the years are: the Harlem YMCA, Women’s Center for Education and Advancement, International Center for the Disabled and The West End



Intergenerational Residence, a homeless shelter for single mothers and senior citizens. Gallashaw was named the Urban Financial Services Coalition’s Diversity Champion of the Year, and she received the NYC Department of Education’s Cooperative Education Award in recognition of her “outstanding service and exemplary dedication to the youth of New York City.” Gallashaw credits her employer with her community service success. “The Bank of New York Mellon has made a strong commitment to supporting the communities in which we work and live. This allows me the time and resources to work within the community.” Count The Consortium among the numerous organizations that have honored Gallashaw. This June, as she received the Peter C. Thorp Corporate Leadership Award, she recalled her first meeting with Mr. Thorp, the award’s namesake. Gallashaw met the staunch supporter and long-time champion of The Consortium while working in college relations. She refers to him as an “unsuspecting mentor and advocate” of The Consortium. She adds, “He was a great role model as he talked the talk and walked the walk.” Upon receiving the phone call to inform her of her nomination, she was “stunned and deeply honored.” She says, “I love my job, and to get an award for doing what I feel passionately about is like the icing on a cake.” She remembers, as she stood at the podium, she “saw a room full of people—corporate, alums, students—all full of hope.” Like Thorp, Gallashaw practices what she preaches. There wasn’t a dry eye in the room as she left the stage after presenting her financial contribution to The Consortium. Although Gallashaw is not a Consortium alum, she possesses immense dedication to the organization.

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