Ken Lindsay (BBA) was recognized as one of the “Legends of the PGA” by the Professional Golfers
Association of America. Lindsay, who served as president of the PGA from 1997-98,
is a PGA Master Professional who spent 31 years as general manager and director of
golf at Colonial Country Club in Jackson, Miss. He also is a member of the PGA Golf
Professional Hall of Fame.
David S. Kennedy (BS, JD ’70) was honored by colleagues and staff for 30 years of service as a bankruptcy
judge for the Western District of Tennessee.
W. David Dickson (JD) co-edited the book On Seas Contested: The Seven Great Navies of the Second World War, published by the U.S. Naval Institute. The naval historian lives in Hernando, Miss.
||Glen Reid (BBA, JD ’71) of Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs was named among “Lawyers of the Year for
2011” by Best Lawyers. Reid is managing partner of the firm’s Memphis office and a member of its Intellectual
Property Protection and Litigation Service Team.
Don Valdez (BS, JD ’75) retired from the law firm of Decker, Jones, McMackin, McClane, Hall
& Bates in Fort Worth, Texas. He is completing his term as chair of the Entertainment
and Sports Law Section of the State Bar of Texas. Valdez was voted the 2010 Top Entertainment
Attorney by Fort Worth Magazine.
|Dr. Mark V. Smith
||Dr. Mark V. Smith (MEd, EdD ’79), Distinguished Service Professor of Education at Rhodes College, received
a Meritorious Service Award from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
Commission on Colleges.
Jane Bray Nelson (MS) received the American Association of Physics Teachers Distinguished Service
Citation in recognition of her service to the organization. She has taught numerous
AP science classes and was teacher-director of University High School at Research
Park, a science and technology magnet school in Orange County, Fla. Nelson was inducted
into the National Teachers Hall of Fame in 2002.
Marty Belz (BBA), president and CEO of Peabody Hotel Group, received the CFHLA Charles Andrews
Memorial Hospitality Award for Community Leadership.
Michael Less (JD), senior partner in Less, Getz & Lipman, received the Don L. Smith Lifetime Achievement
Award for the Advancement of Tennessee Construction Law from the Tennessee Association
of Construction Counsel.
D. Mike Pennington (BA) retired after 25 years with ArvinMeritor Inc., a global manufacturer of components
and systems for commercial vehicles. Most recently he served as senior director of
global marketing communications and industry relations. Pennington has established
PenNotes LLC, a strategic communications, counsel and services firm, to serve clients
in the global trucking and truck equipment industry. He is based in Amelia Island,
Dr. Charles E. Garrett Jr. (BSEd, MEd ’81), superintendent of the New Albany (Miss.) School District, was selected
the 2011 Mississippi Superintendent of the Year by the American Association of School
||Joe Walker (JD) was named trusts and estates “Lawyer of the Year” in Memphis in the 2011 Best Lawyers in America. He also was appointed to the Asset Protection Committee of the American College
of Trust and Estate Counsel for 2011-12.
|John R. Cannon Jr.
||John R. Cannon Jr. (JD) is 2011 president of the Memphis Bar Association. He is a partner in the law
firm of Shuttleworth Williams.
Bernice Donald (BA, JD ’79), U.S. District Court judge for the Western District of Tennessee, was
nominated by President Obama to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Donald also received
the 2011 Spirit of Excellence Award from the American Bar Association Commission on
Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession.
Donna Fields (JD), Shelby County Circuit Court judge, received the Frances Grant Loring and Marion
Griffin Award for outstanding achievement in the legal profession from the Association
for Women Attorneys.
||Vandella Brown (BA) received the Illinois Library Association’s 2010 Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial/DEMCO
Award in recognition of her outstanding service to libraries and librarians in Illinois.
She was instrumental in developing the Illinois State Library’s Diversity Program,
which presents some 40 programs a year. Her work with the ILA’s Cultural and Racial
Diversity Committee helped broaden its reach, awareness and membership.
||Kathy Tuberville (BSEd, MS ’82) was named coordinator of academic internships at the U of M. She has
14 years of college-level teaching and administration experience in the areas of business,
career services and internships. Tuberville is a doctoral candidate in organizational
leadership from Northcentral University in Prescott Valley, Ariz.
Randy McPherson (BSEd, MS ’84, EdD ’93), counselor at Trezevant Career and Technology Center, was
named the nation’s high school counselor of the year. The award, presented by the
American School Counselor Association, included a trip to Washington, D.C., for a
black-tie gala and meetings with Congress.
Rita Phillips White (BSEd, MEd ’94) was honored at the White House as one of 62 National Distinguished
Principals. She is principal of Riverwood Elementary in Cordova.
John Bobango (JD) was included in the 2011 Best Lawyers in America.
Jeff Ezekiel (BBA, MBA ’01) was named senior vice president of LEDIC Management Group.
|Dr. R. Maurice Hollingsworth
||Dr. R. Maurice Hollingsworth (BBA) was elected president of the Baptist Convention of New Mexico. He joined the
staff of First Baptist Church of Las Cruces in January 2006. Hollingsworth earned
an MDiv and a PhD in New Testament from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
in Fort Worth, Texas. After completing his doctorate, he and his family served as
Southern Baptist missionaries in Taipei, Taiwan, where he taught at Taiwan Baptist
Seminary. Later Hollingsworth served in Jackson, Tenn. He also is the New Mexico trustee
for the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.
Gregory Duckett (JD), senior vice president and corporate counsel for Baptist Memorial Health Care,
was elected vice chair of the Tennessee Board of Regents.
||Walter Roop (BBA), president of Roop Financial Services Inc., was selected as one of Memphis Magazine’s 2010 Five Star Wealth Managers. This is the third year he has received the honor.
Dr. Jeffrey Hamsley (BBA, MS ’94, EdD ’00) was certified by the International Academy of Behavioral Medicine,
Counseling and Psychotherapy Inc. as a Diplomate in Professional Coaching. Hamsley
also holds Diplomates in Professional Counseling and Chemical Dependency Counseling
from IABMCP. A former adjunct professor in counseling, educational psychology and
research at the U of M, he now is in private practice.
|Amy J. Amundsen
||Amy J. Amundsen (JD), a Memphis divorce attorney, was selected a Fellow of the International Academy
of Matrimonial Lawyers.
Howard Caplan (JD) was selected as a Florida Super Lawyer in the area of business law. He also
was re-elected as a Legal Elite by Florida Trend, also in business law. Caplan is president of Jewish Family and Community Services
Inc. in Jacksonville.
||Alan Crone (BA, JD ’90), a partner at Kramer & Crone, was named a Super Lawyer in the area of
employment and labor law.
Valerie Smith Hight (BBA, MS ’09) was promoted to corporate sales executive with the Memphis Redbirds,
where she has worked since 2007.
Dan Overbey (BBA), president and CEO of BankUnited Investment Services, was re-installed as advisory
board chair for the Bank Insurance & Securities Association. He lives in Miami.
|Denise V. Pratt
||Denise V. Pratt (JD) opened a family law practice in Houston after graduating from the U of M. She
was appointed to the Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners in 2007. In November
Pratt was elected a judge of the Harris County Family District Court.
Daniel Eugene Smith (BA), a sales representative with Kowa Pharmaceuticals of America Inc., received
the company’s 2010 President’s Circle of Excellence Award for top sales performance.
He has 13 years of pharmaceutical sales experience. Smith lives in Tuscaloosa, Ala.,
with his wife, Cara Lynn Smith, and stepdaughter, Cassidy Sunshine Teague. He is the
son of Dr. R. Eugene Smith, retired U of M vice president of business and finance,
and Anne Smith.
Amy Weirich (JD) was appointed Shelby County’s first female district attorney by Gov. Bill Haslam.
Weirich had been an assistant district attorney for almost 20 years before being appointed
the county’s first female deputy district attorney last August.
Russell Rhoads (BBA, MS ’94) is an instructor for the Options Institute at the Chicago Board Options
Exchange. He also is a financial author with Wiley Publishing. His two latest books
are Option Spread Trading — A Comprehensive Guide to Strategies and Tactics and Trading VIX Derivatives – A Guide to Trading VIX Futures, Options and
ETNs, due out in August.
Greg Broy (BA), associate director of communications for the American Cancer Society, earned
the Accreditation in Public Relations certification.
Letitia Robertson (BBA) joined BRIDGES as vice president of Bridge Builders.
Dwight Vick (MPA) published Drugs and Alcohol in the 21st Century: Theory, Behavior and Policy. He is an assistant professor of public administration and graduate coordinator of
political science programs at West Texas A&M University.
Glenn Knight (BBA) was promoted to sales manager with Montblanc North America in Dallas. Headquartered
in Hamburg, Germany, Montblanc produces fine writing instruments, timepieces, leather
goods, jewelry, eyewear and fragrances.
||Kirk Caraway (BA, JD ’97), a partner in Allen, Summers, Simpson, Lillie & Gresham, was named a
“Mid-South Rising Star” in the field of labor and employment law by Law & Politics
for the third consecutive year. He also was elected secretary of the Memphis Bar Association.
Caraway will serve as an officer of the MBA for four years, culminating with a term
as president in 2013-14.
||Chuck Cloud (BA), a financial adviser with Edward Jones in Humboldt, Tenn., was named a principal
with the firm’s holding company, The Jones Financial Companies. Only 26 of the firm’s
40,000 associates were chosen for this honor.
Mary W. Sharp (BPS) was named 2010 Realtor of the Year by the Memphis Area Association of Realtors.
Dr. Thomas Alex Washington (MA) received the Gerald Ludd Award at the 2011 National African-American MSM Leadership
Conference on HIV/AIDS and Other Health Disparities. Washington is an associate professor
of social work and research fellow at California State University Long Beach. He has
volunteered and worked in HIV/AIDS prevention, services and research for 10 years.
Dr. Mary McDonald (EdD), superintendent of schools for the Catholic Diocese of Memphis, was inducted
into the Society of Entrepreneurs.
|Bryant C. Witt
||Bryant C. Witt (JD) joined the Nashville law office of Hall Booth Smith & Slover. He previously
chaired the health care practice group at Miller & Martin.
Estelle Winsett (JD), assistant dean for law career services with the Cecil C. Humphreys School of
Law, was appointed to the Memphis Bar Association board of directors.
Caroline Wilson Boswell (JD) and Ross Allan Boswell (BBA ’95, JD ’98) welcomed the birth of Ross Allan “Bo”
Boswell Jr. on Aug. 6, 2010. He joined sisters Cecilia and Landry.
Craig C. Conley (JD), a shareholder in Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, received the
Sam A. Myar Jr. Memorial Award from the Memphis Bar Association. The award recognizes
a young attorney who has provided outstanding service to the Memphis and Shelby County
legal profession and community.
Brandon Cooper (BBA) was promoted to first vice president and relationship manager for Trustmark
Bank’s Memphis region.
Elian Levatino (BBA) is a branch operations manager for Benchmark Wealth Management.
John Truebger (BM) is an audio/multimedia engineer at Eastman School of Music at the University
of Rochester. Along with his recording duties for undergraduate and graduate students
at Eastman, he also records the performances of the Rochester Philharmonic and Rochester
Jazz orchestras. Truebger has written specifications for the recording equipment for
a new recording control room, recital/chamber hall and rehearsal hall at Eastman.
Dr. Kathryn T. Gines (MA, PhD ’03) and Dr. Donna-Dale L. Marcano (PhD ’04) co-edited Convergences: Black Feminism and Continental Philosophy, published by SUNY Press. Gines is an assistant professor of philosophy at Penn State
University; Marcano is an assistant professor of philosophy at Trinity College in
|Stephen J. Lepp
||Stephen J. Lepp (MBA) was promoted to the rank of captain in the Navy. He is assigned to the Navy
Reserve Forces Command in Norfolk, Va., as assistant deputy chief for Navy Reserve
Manpower and Personnel.
Summer Owens (BBA) wrote the book Life After Birth: A Memoir of Survival and Success as a Teenage Mother. A mother at 15, she went on to earn an MBA from Belhaven College and is a senior
marketing specialist with FedEx Corp.
||Elizabeth Yarbrough (JD) joined the law firm of Butler, Sevier, Hinsley & Reid as an associate attorney.
She focuses her practice on domestic relations matters, including collaborative divorce
and mediation as well as traditional litigation-based advocacy. Yarbrough is listed
by the Supreme Court of Tennessee as a family mediator and has been trained in collaborative
Carole Choate Blankenship (DMA) presented a paper at the International Paul Bowles Conference in Lisbon, Portugal.
She also performed songs by Bowles, an expatriate composer, author and translator
who lived much of his life in Morocco. The conference, held at the University of Lisbon,
celebrated Bowles’100th birthday.
Griffin H. Bridgers (BBA) is an associate attorney with the firm of Stewart, Shortridge & Fitzke in Denver.
Marcus Matthews (BA) a doctoral candidate in higher and adult education at the U of M and coordinator
of The Teen Appeal newspaper, published the book I Am Not the Father: Narratives of Men Falsely Accused of Paternity.
Eric Robertson (BA) was named project leader for Greater Memphis Neighborhoods, a revitalization
initiative. He had been chief administrative officer for the Memphis City Center Commission.
Elizabeth Daggett (BA) is assistant professor of art and director for the Center for Outreach in the
Development of the Arts at Rhodes College. She teaches courses in digital photography
and digital art, documentary filmmaking and experimental filmmaking. Daggett earned
her MFA from the University of North Texas.
Shon Johnson (JD), an associate with Black McLaren Jones Ryland & Griffee, was elected president
of the Young Lawyers Division of the Memphis Bar Association.
Jeremiah Jones (BBA) was named branch manager of First Citizens National Bank’s Atoka (Tenn.) Financial
Renee Robinson (PhD) is chair and associate professor of communication in the Department of Communication
at Saint Xavier University in Chicago.
Tyler Williams (MS) was promoted to assistant vice president of Jeff Davis Bank & Trust Co. in Lake
Charles, La. He had been the bank’s marketing director.
Megan E. Arthur (JD) joined the law firm of Shea Moskovitz & McGhee as an associate.
||Amber Floyd (BSEd, JD ’10) joined the Memphis office of Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs, where she focuses
her legal practice in the area of commercial litigation.
Ben Ledsinger (MSCE) of SSR Ellers received the Jack B. Humphreys Young Member Award from the Tennessee
Section of the Institute of Transportation Engineers.
Christopher Myles Jackson (MM) was chosen to perform in a master class with retired New York Philharmonic bassoonist
Leonard Hindell at the International Double Reed Society Conference. He also attended
the Imani Winds Chamber Music Institute in New York City and the Stellenbosch International
Chamber Music Festival in South Africa. Jackson is a DMA candidate at the U of M.
Rev. Frank A. Thomas (PhD) co-edited Preaching with Sacred Fire: An Anthology of African-American Sermons, 1750 to the
Present. The book contains selections from Frederick Douglass, Malcolm X, Dr. Martin Luther
King Jr. and Gardner Taylor, among others.
David Dick (DMA) was appointed principal trombone of the Regina Symphony Orchestra in Saskatchewan,
Canada. He also is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Regina.
Ann Marie Gideon (BFA) was nominated for a Suzi Bass Award, the Atlanta professional theatre award,
in her first season with the Georgia Shakespeare Festival. She was nominated for her
performance as Bianca in Shrew: The Musical.
Heather Kraus (MSCE) of SSR Ellers received the Young Engineer Award from the Tennessee Section
of the American Society of Civil Engineers.
Mikah Meyer (BM) made his professional international debut as the alto soloist in Handel’s Messiah for l’Orchestre Symphonique de Longueuil in Montreal.
Dana Avant (MSN) is administrative director for neurosurgical, orthopedics and oncology at Methodist
Brenda Garner (MSN), a clinical faculty member in the Loewenberg School of Nursing, received her
certification through the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
||Amanda Ray (JD) joined the litigation section of Chambliss, Bahner & Stophel of Chattanooga.
She focuses her practice on general civil litigation.