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Willamette | MBA | Atkinson Graduate School of Management Willamette University Willamette MBA (Atkinson School)

February 2009

Administrative News


Message from the Dean

Dean Debra RingoldDear Atkinson Community,

It's already spring semester at Atkinson and a number of special events and programs are underway.  In particular, our Executive Development Center is working on a number of new program offerings this spring related to social action and sustainability.  Details on all of these courses are included in this newsletter.

It's my pleasure to welcome a new class of MBA for Professionals students to the Willamette MBA community this January.  As this new group started class in Portland and Salem we were proud to graduate another group of Professional students on January 17.  Special thanks to Kerry Tymchuk, Willamette alumnus and member of the Board of Trustees, for providing the Commencement address.

As we move into our busy spring recruiting season, we welcome your referrals for applicants into our MBA programs (both Full-Time and Professional formats).  A changing economy is an excellent time to pursue an MBA and we have program options and financial aid packages available to meet the needs of anyone interested in attending Willamette.  Answers to common questions about financial aid can be found on our website at

I encourage you to call me or our admissions staff if you have any questions about our upcoming programs.  We appreciate all you do to support us!

Best Wishes,


Debra Debra J. Ringold, Dean and JELD-WEN Professor of Free Enterprise



Alumni News



Gable EngagementDean Gable MBA'08 and Amanda McVay, 2008 Willamette University Chemistry graduate, got engaged on September 27, 2008 in Spokane, WA. The couple will exchange vows on June 20, 2009 in Spokane. Amanda is enrolled in Pacific University's College of Optometry and Dean works for Fluor Corporation.


Feely weddingTom Feely MBA'79 was married to Jennifer LaFlamme on October 18, 2008 at St. Ignatius Catholic Church in Southeast Portland. Tom and Jennifer were engaged for eight years. The couple honeymooned in Maui. Tom will be retiring from the City of Portland in July of this year. Tom and Jennifer are looking forward to spending a lot more time at their vacation home in the Mt. Hood National Forest.


Family Additions

RobertsHeather Buxton Roberts MBA'06 and her husband, Chris, recently welcomed their first son, Carter O'Reilly Roberts, on December 24, 2008.




Jim Vangelos' MAD'79 enviromental business, Polymer Logitics, continues to grow with New Contracts on returnable packaging. The business will exceed $20 million in '09. Locations are in Riverside, San Antonio and Chicago. The latest agreement is with the fastest growing retailer in the US, Aldi which has over 1000 stores. Polymer rents and sells plastic packaging that may be used up to 100 times vs traditional one way packaging that ends up in land fills 25% of the time. Jim also joined the Yotta Mark advisory board in Jan of '09. Yotta Mark is a leader of tracing and tracking systems based out of Redwood City, CA. Scott Carr, CEO of Yotta Mark is involved with the Atkinson School as a Board Member. Jims wife, Ingrid and his 4 year old daughter, Bella, are also involved with Polymer. They recently shot a comercial that plays on the RFD Channel / wide world of Horses ( Les Voght Show). Jim still stays in contact with his associates from Atkinson such as Paul Robarts. Yes, if you do the math, Jim was 50 when he had his daughter!

Tim Tanis MBA'07 passed the Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) exam.

Julia Murton '94, MBA'97 is now a Mary Kay Sales Director in Qualification. "I am on target to debut as an Mary Kay Sales Director in May 2009," writes Julia. "We are also earning our first career car, not quite the pink Cady yet. I love my business because I am helping women to have what they need for their families. I started my Mary Kay business in July of 2007. Two short months later I lost my day job. With the support of my family I made the decision to build a thriving Mary Kay business."

John OlingerThe Coventry Crusaders basketball team, which competes in Division 1 of the English Basketball League recently signed John Olinger '05, MBA'07. The press release published on January 20 stated, "He joins the Crusaders for the rest of the season to add much needed strength and depth to the squad. John hails from Salem, Oregon where he played three seasons for Willamette University and is the career free throw percentage leader at Willamette. Whilst at University he was selected to play for both the 1st and 2nd teams of the All Northwest Conference. He was also voted team MVP in the 2005 and 2006 seasons. John has spent the summer and autumn of 2008 playing and travelling on tour with 'Athletes in Action'. The Crusaders will be looking for a repeat of his final season stats when the 6'1" Point Guard averaged 18 pts per game with 53% field goals and 47% 3pt success." Read the press release here:

In September 2008, Dana Hurtig MBA'94 joined Rentrak Corporation as Director of Technical Operations. Rentrak (Nasdaq: RENT), located in Portland, OR, is an industry-leading information management company, providing content measurement and analytical services to some of the most recognizable names in the entertainment industry.

Gerald (Jerry) Mathias MBA'03 has been assigned to an Advisory capacity with the Bank of Nova Scotia (ScotiaBank) in Toronto where he has been a Senior Business Intelligence Analyst since mid-2008. He is now responsible for advising on matters of policies and procedures while continuing to manage Business Intelligence projects and maintaining responsibility for capital investments and corporate lending reporting for global operations.

Robert Anderson MBA'99 was promoted to Regional Controller for Affiliated Computer Systems (ACS) in October, 2008. The new role is located in Portland, Oregon and encompasses three divisions that hold contracts with 20 major financial clients such as Capital One, Barclays Bank, and American Express.

Ann Jackson MBA'84 recently had an article published by the Willamette Law Review in November, titled "The Inevitable - Death: Oregon's End of Life Choices." Ann has remained busy since she retired as executive director of the Oregon Hospice Association. "I very much enjoy volunteering for Atkinson—I've had some terrific mentees over the years," writes Ann. "This year I have a bit more time to spend. I'm also volunteering with the Irvington Community Association, Portland's first planned suburb. I'm involved with the annual home tour and lecture series, both scheduled in May. I am also doing consulting, working with individuals in end-of-life health care planning and decision making, working with hospices in states that are adopting/legalizing Death With Dignity laws, and making presentations about end of life care in Oregon. I’m glad that I have an opportunity to apply my unique knowledge."

Joey Razzano '89, MBA'90 is among the founding mothers and is chair of both hospitality and fundraising for the newly formed Special Education PTA of Portland (SEPTAP). On Tuesday, January 27th, 2009 SEPTAP held their first meeting at Beverly Cleary middle school. ALmost 40 people attended the first meeting, representing a variety of disabilities across K-8 schools in Portland. Children with IEP's account for 15% of the Portland Public School population, making them potentially the largest PTA in the Portland School district. Joey's daughter, Jade, has Rett Syndrome.

Andy YostAndy Yost MBA'06 passed the GPHR certification exam on January 26, 2009 after taking Lisbeth Claus' GPHR preparation course. In addition, he has started a private counseling practice specializing in Solution Focused Brief Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for individuals or couples dealing with depression, anxiety, stress management, career planning, or burnout. His website is

Jorge Ordonez MBA'05 recently began working as a Senior Financial Economist for the Public Utility Commission in Salem, Oregon. He will conduct applied research concerning the development and administration of regulatory policies for electric, natural gas and telecommunications utilities.


Atkinson News


The Compass Online Network – Coming Soon for All Willamette Alumni

LogoA big change is coming for all alumni, and it will take the form of a brand new online system called The Compass. The Compass will replace the existing alumni Online Community. And this isn't just a face lift to the old system: It is an entirely new one.

You’ll see information coming soon about The Compass and all the features it offers.  Here’s a quick sampling of functions The Compass is able to do:

The Alumni Directory:

  1. offers a much smarter and more versatile search tool. You will have increased control in selecting search criteria and display settings.
  2. allows you to determine what information people see when they search for your profile. Don't want to have that phone number listed? No problem - you can hide it with one click. Want to include a profile photo so your peers can recognize you? You can now add that right on your profile screen.
The Career Network:
  1. utilizes new resources to refine your resume, construct cover letters that stand out, and nail all kinds of job interviews.
  2. researchs prospective employers, learning about their history, fiscal strength, and company culture.
  3. lets you learn about the career paths other alumni have taken - and how they might help you find yours.

Class Notes:
As always, submit your class notes to ATKINSONews using our online form.  In addition, class notes printed in The Scene magazine can also be submitted through The Compass (and displayed online):

  1. report news in your own life or things you've learned about fellow alumni (marriages and new babies).
  2. return at a later date and see what you've submitted.
  3. sign up to follow submissions by any of your classmates automatically.

As a final note, remember: Despite all kinds of technological improvements, we're still here to help you in person. Contact us by email at the Atkinson School or through the Willamette University Alumni Relations office.

Bike Racks Installed!

In late December, Willamette Facilities installed 2 new bike racks under the ramp on the north side of the Atkinson Building. The bike racks were purchased with the generous support of Dean Ringold, Ross Stout of Safety and Security, and a Sustainability Grant. The bike racks are intended to promote year-round sustainable commuting among AGSM and College of Law students who represent the largest off-campus contingent of students at Willamette. Please join us in helping to reduce Willamette's carbon footprint by commuting by bicycle.

Guest Speaker on Corporate Fraud and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act

Bill Douglas, founder and President of Cost Advisors, a professional services firm based in Portland, was a guest speaker in Professor Ken Smith's Fraud Prevention and Internal Controls class on Monday, February 9. Mr. Douglas designed SarbOxPro, a software application for helping companies meet the requirements of Section 404. He authored the book "SOX Illustrated", a guide to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and has held management positions in accounting, sales and marketing at Tektronix, Inc and FLIR Systems, Inc. He was also an auditor with Deloitte & Touche and a CFO of a local software firm. He graduated Summa Cum Laude from Villanova University with a B.S. in Accounting. He is a CPA, CIA (Certified Internal Auditor), CFE (Certified Fraud Examiner) and a licensed Private Investigator. Mr. Douglas is a frequent speaker and trainer on topics related to internal controls. His presentation to the Atkinson community was about how fraud by corporations prompted legislators to pass the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and how the Act has impacted corporate internal accounting controls.

Willamette MBA Video Contest – New Premiere Date!

Video ContestWant to share your Willamette MBA experience through your own video?  Interested in receiving a cash prize up to $1000?  All students, alumni, faculty and staff are welcome to submit video entries in the “Our Willamette MBA” video contest – now with an extended deadline.

Videos are due by April 1, 2009 and will be premiered in Portland on April 9, 2009 at a special showing at Living Room Theaters.  Submit your entry via DVD to Russell Yost at or mail to:

Our Willamette MBA Video Contest
Attn:  Russell Yost
900 State Street
Salem, OR 97301

Three cash prizes will be awarded:  $1000 for first place and two $500 prizes for runners up.  For more information, visit or e-mail




Upcoming Events


International Dinner

International DinnerSpecial event sponsored by the International Graduate Student Association

February 13, 2009
6:00 p.m.
Willamette University Campus, Montag Den

Annual dinner event to celebrate the cultural diversity of the Atkinson community, through ethnic food, costume, music and dance. If you are interested in bringing a dish to share, please contact Elena Noyes at


First thursday Empowerment in Action

WEB 2.0 and Beyond - What's Next in Social Media?

March 5, 2009

Location: Living Room Theaters - SW 10th and Stark - Portland, Oregon
Networking at 5:30p.m., presentation and discussion at 6:00p.m.
Details and online RSVP at


POWER Lunch SERIES: Learn. Interact. Connect.

Join Willamette University MBA faculty, staff, students and alumni for an interactive conversation with one of our distinguished Power Lunch presenters.

Time: 12:00p.m. - 1:00p.m.
Location: Alumni Lounge, University Center
Willamette University Campus Salem, Oregon

Map and Directions (Alumni Lounge is in Building #34)

arrow RSVP for these events Online


Tuesday, March 10th

Jim Albaugh, President & CEO
Boeing Integrated Defense Systems

Learn more and RSVP online:



Feb 13 International Dinner
Feb 16 Professor Larry Ettner's Birthday
Feb 26 Dine Like a Diplomat Event
Feb 28 Preview Day for Full-time MBA
Mar 1 Early Action Application Deadline for Full-time MBA Programs
Mar 5 First Thursday Empowerment in Action Series
Mar 10 Power Lunch
Mar 13 Social Entrepreneurship Conference
Mar 23 - 27 Spring Break (Offices Open)
Mar 29 Professor Lisbeth Claus' Birthday
Apr 2 First Thursday Empowerment in Action Series - Portland Biz. Jrnl.
Apr 3 Preview Evening for Full-time MBA
Apr 9 Our Willamette MBA Video Contest - Premiere Event
Apr 18 Professor Bruce Gates' Birthday
Apr 23 - 25 Brownwater 2009
[ alumni events calendar ]


Career Services


Update from Career Services: Beth Ursin & Shelby Gould


Shelby GouldBeth UrsinHighlights of January's Career and Student Affairs Programming included a two-day trek to Seattle for company site visits, Epic Aviation/Air BP on campus for an information session and on-campus interviews, a trek to Portland for a Trailblazer Game and the Sports and Entertainment Career Fair, a mock recruiting event and a special session by Joe Meissner presenting 'Working the Room.'

Seattle Trek: In January, 25 students attended a two day trek to Seattle to visit employers: Microsoft, Real Networks, Boeing and the Port of Seattle. Each organization presented a unique Seattle trekculture, a variety of internship and job prospects, and gave students an internal look at how an organization is structured and managed. The trip was planned and executed by a committee of students and career staff, including Cheryl Berger MBA'09, Josh Beatty MBA'09 and Kristy Bolsinger MBA'09. The Boeing visit included a presentation by Human Resources and finance staff of the Boeing Integrated Defense Systems and included a tour of the Boeing 737 manufacturing facility. Jim Albaugh '72, President and CEO of Boeings IDS division will speak at the upcoming power lunch on March 10, 2009.The Port of Seattle, which manages both the seaport and the airport, included historical information, a tour of the recently remodeled Pier 69, and future plans for economic development in the Seattle area. Seattle trekThe Real Networks visit included lunch and a presentation from recruiter, Julie Life, who recently visited Willamette's MBA campus for an information session. Real Networks campus, located near the waterfront, includes a bowling alley and a beautiful atrium. Atkinson alumni, Sheila McLaren MBA'92, Kevin Price MM'96 and Justin Barsotti MM'99 organized the site visit to Microsoft and talked with students about their careers and career potential at Microsoft. The Microsoft visit ended with a visit to the employee store, generously arranged by our alumni. Students mingled with alumni at an informal gathering at Fado's Irish Pub on Thursday evening. Current Staff, Beth Ursin, Shelby Gould and Wade Brooks also attended.

Recent Recruiting Data: The MBA Career Services Council (MBACSC) surveyed over 77 MBA programs and found that over 20% of respondents reported recruiting was down more than 20%; 50% reported recruiting was down over 10% and 14% reported recruiting was flat. The 2009 US Hiring Forecast, results of a survey by Career Builder and Harris Interactive including over 8000 employees and over 3000 hiring managers and HR staff indicates that employers expect hiring to be flat. Notes Matt Ferguson, CEO of, "Looking ahead, recruitment levels are expected to be lower in the new year, but employers are not out of the mix completely; instead they're taking 'a wait and see' approach to hiring. Fourteen percent of employers, surveyed by, state they plan to increase fulltime, permanent employees and 16 percent plan to decrease in 2009. The remainder of employers say they are unsure or don't plan to make any changes to their headcount in the new year." The entire survey can be found at: _SMB.pdf.

Because the economy is tight, Career Services is recommending that students and alumni plan to spend more time job hunting than in a typical year. In a typical year, the recommendation is to make a list of 50 companies and build connections with 100 people, ideally 2 or more per company who can keep an eye out for jobs and push your resume to the right person. Typically a job hunt lasts one month for each $10,000 in income one is seeking (six months for $60,000). In this economy, it might be necessary to look at many more small and medium size firms, and to cast the net wider than normal.  An organized approach, with a persistent follow-up plan, will win hands-down over a buckshot approach to job hunting. In February,Career Services will be initiating WIP teams (Willamette in Pursuit). WIP teams are modeled after the approach outplacement firms took in the wake of the internet bust, where job seekers were encouraged to meet weekly, set goals and share outcomes. These outplacement firms found that those involved in accountability teams found jobs faster than those who sought work on their own.

Career Development Seminars for students and alumni of the MBA for Professionals program are kicking off on February 26th in Salem and February 28th in Portland. The first two sessions include a seminar on Leadership development and a seminaron working in international teams. Both sessions focus on building the interpersonal skills necessary to launch the professional to the next level in management. To find out more about these sessions, visit the Career Suite at: Fair



Students pictured at the Northwest MBA Consortium Career Day.



Executive Development Center


Utility Management Certificate Program – Midwest Dates this Spring

Willamette’s Utility Management Certificate program (UMC) will be presented in the Midwest this spring, hosted by Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, WI. 

The UMC is designed for those looking for or working in a utility management position.  The program utilizes industry-specific instructors and content and offers a dynamic environment for collaboration and networking.

Midwest Dates:  March 30-April 3 and April 27-May 1, 2009 (two week session)
Additional Information and Registration:
Note:  The Utility Management Certificate program will again be presented in the northwest this fall, Sept. 21-25 and Oct. 19-23 in Portland, Oregon.

Social Action and Sustainability – New EDC Offerings for Spring 2009

Participants interested in programs geared towards entrepreneurship, sustainability and social action research will find a number of exciting programs through Willamette’s EDC this spring.  All programs are designed and taught by Willamette’s faculty and industry experts. 


So you think you want to be a social entrepreneur?  More and more people of all ages are deciding to pursue a career as entrepreneurs for society. If you are interested in learning more about what being a social entrepreneur is all about, this one day conference is for you.

Location:  Willamette University Portland Center – Portland, Oregon


This Certificate Program takes a unique approach to presenting the interconnectedness of social, economic, and environmental well-being. This is done in a way that will integrate all areas of sustainability by first focusing on the dynamics of complex systems, followed by a practical look at social systems and how the expansion of social well-being ties directly to economic and environmental well-being. 

Session One: April 2-3 (and 2-hour webinar on April 17)
Session Two:  April 30-May 1
Session Three:  June 4-5

Location:  Willamette University Portland Center – Portland, Oregon


Sustainability is not a problem to be solved. It is a future to be created. Leadership is not about position or formal authority but the capacity of human communities to shape futures that people truly desire. What does it take to nurture and unleash such leadership? Led by Peter Senge of MIT, and joined by colleagues working in the sustainability field, this workshop will be a synthesis of core organizational learning disciplines - systems thinking, mental models and collaborative inquiry, personal mastery and building shared vision - and the practical know-how developed through the Society on Organizational Learning and the book The Necessary Revolution.

Location:  Willamette University Portland Center – Portland, Oregon


This residential, retreat format certificate program is for those who want to not only learn more about how performance occurs inside organizational social systems.  It is for those who also want to learn how to apply social action research methods to uncover and better understand performance, social and financial well-being inside their own or client organizations.  The 4 day workshop is offered at the Rex Ranch retreat and conference center and will require some follow up work for participants to complete certification.

Location:  Rex Ranch Retreat Center – Amado, AZ (near Tucson)

Connect with the EDC on Facebook and LinkedIn

The Executive Development Center is now on Facebook and LinkedIn!  Become a "fan" of the EDC and learn more about upcoming EDC programs, post comments and articles and ask questions about special topics.

FacebookWillamette EDC Facebook Page

LinkedInWillamette Utility Management Certificate Program LinkedIn Group:



Faculty News


Fred ThompsonFred Thompson has been invited to join the faculty of the V Summer School inPublic Economics for young public finance professors and doctoral candidates at Georgia State University.

Additionally, Culture and Environment in the Pacific Northwest, by CLA professor Richard J. Ellis and Fred Thompson, which was originally published in the American Political Science Review (Dec 1997), has been reprinted in Perri 6 and Gerald Mars (eds.) The Institutional Dynamics of Culture, Volume II: The New Durkheimians. The International Library of Essays in Anthropology-Ashgate, 2008: 177-190. This is the article's second reprinting. It earlier appeared in R. Scott Frey (ed.) The Environment and Society Reader. Allyn & Bacon, 2001: 180-201.

Elliot MaltzElliot Maltz recently had an article accepted for publication in the Journal ofMarketing. (Coauthored with Gary Frazier; Kersi Antia and Aric Rindfleisch). It's entitled: Intermediary Sharing of Strategic Information with Suppliers. It explores the conditions under which downstream members of the distribution channel share strategic information with their suppliers.



Staff News


Beth UrsinBeth Ursin , Director of Career Services recently passed the Global Professional of Human Resources (GPHR) Certificate Exam. Beth is currently the President of the Salem Human Resource Management Association.




Student News

Students Pass HR Certification Exams

Full-time MBA student Cheryl Berger passed the Professional in Human Resources (PHR) Certification Exam and MBA for Professionals student Julie Kennedy recently passed the Global Professional of Human Resources (GPHR) Certificate Exam. Congratulations!

“Happy are those who dream dreams and are ready to pay the price to make them come true.”

Leon J. Suenes

This email newsletter was sent to members of the Willamette/Atkinson community and subscribers from the Atkinson Graduate School. If you wish to unsubscribe to ATKINSONews, simply reply or email with your request.

ATKINSONews is a monthly newsletter from the Atkinson Graduate School of Management of Willamette University, Salem, Oregon. It is distributed to the current Atkinson community, subscribed alumni and University administrators via email each month during the academic year.

Mission: As an effort to foster one of Atkinson’s significant purposes — to establish a close community — ATKINSONews’s mission is to provide an accurate and timely forum for disseminating current news and events involving the school and its current and former community members.

Acknowledgements: I thank the following contributors for this month’s issue: Russell Yost, Debra Ringold, Beth Ursin, Shelby Gould, Dean Gable, Tom Feely, Heather Buxton Roberts, Jim Vangelos, Tim Tanis, Julia Murton, John Olinger, Dana Hurtig, Jerry Mathias, Robert Anderson, Ann Jackson, Andy Yost, Joey Razzano, Jorge Ordonez, Joshua Beatty, Ken Smith, Elena Noyes, Fred Thompson, Elliot Maltz, and Lisbeth Claus.

Subscriptions: Recipients wishing to unsubscribe — excluding current community members — must do so by submitting your request to unsubscribe. Current Atkinson community members (faculty, staff and students) cannot unsubscribe but can instruct their email software to purge or block the newsletter via Message Filters (Netscape) or Message Rules (Microsoft) applications. And last, please update your email address with us when your email address changes.

Comments/Corrections/Suggestions: I encourage and appreciate that you send your thoughts, comments, criticisms, corrections or suggestions about ATKINSONews to Corrections will be addressed in the following issue and all your comments or suggestions will be thoughtfully considered.

Submissions: You may submit any news item pertaining to your academic life or significant personal milestones including (but not limited to) promotions, awards, accolades, engagements, marriages and babies. Also, if you know of a near future event you think might be of interest to the Atkinson community, submit that item as well. I will try to include all appropriate submissions as time and space allow. The deadline for submissions is Wednesday noon, the day before publication (see below). Please send your submissions electronically to ATKINSONews.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed herein are solely those of the contributor and do not necessarily reflect those of the Atkinson Graduate School Administration or Willamette University.

Newsletter Archives: Past editions of ATKINSONews are located online.

Thanks for reading. Aimee Akimoff, Compiler/Editor