Alumni Updates — March 2015

We hope you enjoy reading all the latest personal and professional updates from our BIC alumni. We post these updates once each year, usually during the spring semester. We also post various alumni interviews throughout the year. If you would like to contribute an update for a future post, please email us at BIC@baylor.edu. Enjoy!

(click on the photos to enlarge)

Amanda Sekour (’99) is getting married this year to her British fiancé, Laurence Hebson.  They live in Austin with her three children.  Amanda now teaches ESL at the University of Texas for the International Office.

HayworthJohn-Paul Hayworth (’01) earned a master’s degree from the University of Connecticut in 2003.  He currently lives in Washington, D.C. and was most recently the Manager of Federal Affairs and Senior Policy Analyst in the Executive Office of Mayor Vincent C. Gray. He is currently in his first term of office as an Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner in the Petworth Neighborhood. He is heavily involved in the community through mentorship programs, issues facing asylum seekers and LGBT Affairs. He is the President of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington, one of the oldest and largest men’s choruses in the country.

Becky Oberg (’01) earned her BA in Journalism in 2001. A devastating diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder has not kept her down.  She is an award-winning blogger for HealthyPlace.com, the nation’s largest mental health consumer website, and runs a successful freelance writing business in Indianapolis.  She is currently studying Arabic and working on a murder mystery novel.

Lori Pampell Clark (’02) works as a Principal Transportation Planner at the North Central Texas Council of Governments, overseeing implementation of projects & programs that reduce transportation-related air pollutants.

View More: http://catherinejeter.pass.us/rob-emilyEmily Nicholson (’03) and husband Rob Simcox welcomed son Robert J. Simcox IV in January of this year. Emily is the Campaign Director for the Newseum in Washington, D.C.  They live in Arlington, Virginia.

 

 

Julie SmithJulie Smith (’03) completed her Master’s Degree in Higher Education Student Affairs Administration at Baylor in 2009. After working at the college level for 3 years, she returned to the classroom to teach Teen Leadership at J. Frank Dobie High School in Pasadena, Texas. She will be marrying Wesley Bennett on July 4, 2015 in Houston, Texas.

 

Kristina Bradford (’04) recently completed a Masters of Science in Ethics and Public Policy at Suffolk University in Boston.  She is currently working at Harvard Medical School in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine as a Program Manager for Tuberculosis Projects.  She also participates in policy initiatives and lobbying efforts combatting slavery and human trafficking both domestically and internationally.

Kenneth Wolfe (’04) and his wife, Teresa Wolfe (’04), bring investors together to purchase apartment buildings.  As of now they are principals in 1199 multi-family units and recently bought their first property outside of Texas!  They closed on Cheyenne Vista Apartments (190 units) in Colorado Springs, CO; that same day they also closed on The Oaks at Jane Lane (109 units) in Haltom City, TX. You can find them on the web at www.wolfe-re.com. Kenneth was recently interviewed by Old Capital Lending, and you can listen to the interview at their podcast.

BergmanJillian (Law) Bergman (’05) was promoted to Senior Manager at Holtzman Partners, LLP in October 2014. After graduating with her Masters of Accountancy from Baylor in 2006, she spent two years working in audit for Deloitte in Houston before moving to Austin, TX to marry her husband Don and join Holtzman Partners, a smaller public accounting firm with a focus on the Austin market. Jillian performs audit and advisory services for both public and private companies, assists clients with M&A due diligence, and advises clients with technical accounting issues. She is actively involved in the firm’s Women’s Initiative and Wellness Committee, and is a Board member of Austin Habitat Young Professionals. Jillian and Don have two kids, Madison (4) and Levi (2). 

haydenShenna (Gembler) Hayden (’05) and her husband Rodney were thrilled to welcome their first child, Wyatt Lowell on December 12, 2013! Shenna will be celebrating her seventh year with the Witte Museum in San Antonio as Manager of Public Programs. She is excited to announce that she was selected to participate in the Smithsonian Affiliate Visiting Professionals Program in June of this year and will be focusing her work and study on Museum Theater! The Haydens are looking forward to introducing Wyatt to Baylor this year at homecoming! Sic’Em Bears!

PerreaultMimi (Wiggins) Perreault (’05) and her husband Greg welcomed their second daughter Margery Frances on July 31, 2014. In the photo are Margery and her big sister Evangeline (now 3). Mimi and Greg are PhD students at the University of Missouri School of Journalism in Columbia, MO. Mimi passed her comprehensive exams in the Fall and will begin work at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC as instructor in Fall 2015 while she completes her dissertation work. Two of her recent publications are available online: “Social Media and Disasters: A Functional Framework for Use in Disaster Planning, Response, and Research” and “Does Scary Matter? Testing the Effectiveness of the New National Weather Service Tornado Warnings.” Mimi can be reached at mfwperreault@gmail.com. (Photo courtesy of Lollipop Photography)

Katie (Kennedy) Root (’05) graduated as Katie Kennedy in 2005 from Baylor with a BS in Forensic Science. She went on to pursue her MD degree at Ross University and then completed residency in internal medicine at LSU Health in Shreveport. In 2013 she started working as an internal medicine physician in her hometown of Tyler, TX. In 2011 she married Mike Root, a certified biomedical engineering technician and master sergeant in the US Air Force Reserves.

Jennifer Powell (’06) is living and working as a Project Manager in telecommunications in Dallas, Texas, while also pursuing a Master of Liberal Studies from Southern Methodist University.  She just completed her first marathon in December 2014, and will tackle a second one in April 2015.  On June 6, 2015 she will marry her fiance, Ashwin Thakkar, in an intercultural ceremony that will merge his Indian heritage with her Texas roots.

joynerHolly Joyner (’07) is living in Waco and working with Living and Learning Programs at Baylor. She just took a new position as the Program Director of the Baylor & Beyond Living-Learning Center and had her first child in September, Jameson Harmon Joyner.

 

rappMegan Rapp (’07) currently works in international affairs for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)’s Development Credit Authority (DCA). In her current role, she oversees the development of new partial-credit guarantees to support development objectives in Africa. Prior to USAID, Megan worked for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and Teach for America (TFA) in Miami, Florida. Megan loves being in Washington D.C. and is active in her church community (Church of the Advent) and enjoys cycling and exploring the city. She also taught a course on Development Finance at The Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) this past semester. (Read more about Megan)

rayKeisha Ray (’07) — After graduating from Baylor in 3 years with a B.A. in philosophy, Keisha went to the University of Utah where she completed a Ph.D. in philosophy with a specialty in Bioethics in 2013. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the University of South Carolina in the Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities and the philosophy department located in Columbia, SC. Keisha’s original research has been published in books and journals and she has been teaching philosophy courses at the college level for seven years.

byrdStephanie (Kraemer) Byrd (’08) has enjoyed her 6+ years with Schneider Electric, most recently as part of the Government Relations team as a policy and strategy adviser. She cooks better than ever now, spoils her 100lb bulldog, recommends everyone vacation in Japan, and sits on the executive committee of the North Texas Renewable Energy Group.

 

 

greygrey2Nicole Grey (’08) received her JD from St. Mary’s University School of Law in December 2014. She is about to become a patent attorney, if she passes the Texas State Bar. She currently works as a free-lance patent agent and for the Texas State Bar of Texas as a research assistant. She, along with her husband James Grey, welcomed their fourth child, Laura Grey in December 2014. Their other three children are Lucy (7), Lucas (4) and Linus (2). They all reside in San Antonio, Texas. James and Nicole are looking forward to another season of football as season ticket holders. Sic Em Bears!

hunterMargaret (Copeland) Hunter (’08) was recently married to Colin Hunter, Founder and CEO of premier men’s clothing brand, Alton Lane. They live in the West Village of Manhattan. Her Off-Broadway show, “How 2 B A New Yorker”, recently celebrated 2 1/2 years running. She is currently starting a boutique candle company, Tulip and Bear.

 

Kelly Driscoll (’09) graduated in 2009 with a BBA in Entrepreneurship and is now Sales & Marketing Director for Fara Coffee in Austin,TX.  She wears many hats for the start-up roaster, promoting its great quality, direct trade coffee.  Sales from Fara Coffee benefit the Fara Foundation, which aims to improve the livelihood of the Nicaraguan people.

coley davisColey Ann (Davis) Tatyrek (’09) graduated in December 2009 with a major in Medical Humanities and a minor in Child and Family Studies. After graduating early from Baylor, she continued on directly into nursing school at The University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from UTMB’s Accelerated Bacc2 program in December of 2010. Immediately following graduation, she began working as an Emergency Department Nurse at the brand new Methodist West Houston Hospital in Katy, Texas and has been working there ever since! She married her long time best friend in May, 2012 and they purchased their first home in October, 2013. They have adopted 2 rescued pit bulls, Paisley and Bella, and have a trip to London, Paris, Rome, and Barcelona booked for May of 2016 before they begin a family!

Courtney Burge (’10) recently accepted a position with the State Department Civil Service in Washington, D.C.

Kandace HillebrandtKandace E. Hillebrandt (’10) graduated from Florida State University in 2012 with a Masters of Social Work in the clinical track with a focus on gerontological mental health. She has been working at the Area Agency on Aging for North Florida as the Program Specialist for Older American’s Act programs.  She is also the Elder Abuse Prevention Coordinator for Planning and Service Area 2 under the Department of Elder Affairs.  She began attending Florida State University College of Law in the fall [2014] and plans to focus on elder care law. (Read more about Kandace)

wallaceSamantha (Rylander) Wallace (’10) tried her hand at school nursing for two years after graduating from LHSON and becoming an RN, before deciding that patients who don’t talk back are preferable and made the switch to operating room nursing.  Along the way, she met and married Andrew Wallace (who did not attend Baylor but she loves him anyway).  She is currently employed with the ambulatory surgery center of ADC while her husband pursues his master’s in information science at UT.

 

Bing Hui (’11) is finishing up at the University of Texas Medical Branch and roaming the country on interviews for emergency medicine residency. Eventually he hopes to work in international disaster relief.

Kirk Lundblade (’11) earned a B.S. degree in Electrical & Computer Engineering in 2011. After leaving Baylor, he attended Auburn University for a Master of Technical and Professional Communication degree. After graduation in 2014, Kirk joined the Engineering Leadership Program at National Instruments as an Applications Engineer.

Grant Nelson (’12) is in his second year of law school at the George Washington University Law School and hasn’t had to read Plato in over four years. He enjoys tech and business law, and is interning for a group that regulates online ad exchanges. He now considers reading the New York Times an enjoyable experience.

Brandi Addison (’13) lives in Waco and just started her first year at Baylor Law School. She is really enjoying still being in Waco, the city that she has learned to love over the last few years, and starting the next stage of her educational career. After law school, she hopes to practice family law in Houston, Texas!

elstonThomas Elston (’14) is currently a neuroscience PhD student at the Brain Health Research Centre at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand. Using a combination of electrophysiological and behavioral techniques he is examining the role of the temporal cortex in a variety of cognitive behaviors and its aberrance in schizophrenia. He also makes new behavioral testing equipment incorporating touch screens, lasers, and Arduinos. In the future Thomas aims to develop novel brain-machine-interfaces to improve diagnostic validity and treatment outcomes of neuropsychiatric disease. Outside of the lab he enjoys reading, surfing, and learning to play rugby.

HaChris Ha (’14) started medical school at the UNT Health Science Center in Fort Worth, after his graduation in 2014, where he is concurrently pursuing a Doctorate in Osteopathic Medicine and a Masters in Public Health. He is pursuing interests in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation and remaining engaged in topics related to bioethics and the intersection of faith and medicine. He is preparing for the Cowtown Half-Marathon in Fort Worth and has goals to complete a marathon by the end of the year.

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