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

April 2010

Administrative News


Message from the Dean

Dean Debra RingoldDear Atkinson Community,

We are delighted to report that the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) announced the reaffirmation of accreditation for the Atkinson Graduate School of Management.  This is exciting news for our school, our graduates and our community.

AACSB International is the global hallmark of excellence in management education.  Less than half of all business management schools in the U.S. and less than 10% of business management schools worldwide hold AACSB accreditation.  Only 9% of AACSB accredited institutions offer graduate-only programs.

The AACSB International extended their congratulations in a note last week:

"On behalf of Andrew Policano, Chair, AACSB International Board of Directors, it is our pleasure to inform you that the Peer Review Team's recommendation to extend accreditation of the business degree programs offered by your school has been concurred with by the Maintenance of Accreditation Committee and ratified by the Board of Directors. Congratulations to you, the faculty, students, staff, and all supporters of the school."

Thank you to all who assisted in the maintenance of accreditation process.
Additional information about AACSB International accreditation is available on our website at

Best Wishes,

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




Alumni News


Family Additions


Spencer NordThe family of Steven Nord MBA '06 and Rebecca Nord celebrated the birth of Spencer Alan on March 15, 2010. Spencer weighed in at 6 lbs. 8 oz. and was 19.5" in length. Steven owns a consulting firm providing strategic, management and technology-based consulting services primarily to the field of healthcare. The Nord family lives in Bend, Oregon.


HotelNutthawuth (Pao) Suwanwong MBA'04 is the owner and general manager of De Lanna Hotel, a boutique hotel located in the heart of Chiang Mai, Thailand. The hotel features several famous cooking schools for those who want to learn to cook authentic Thai food, and is also located next to many antique shops, markets, and small boutiques. De Lanna Hotel is an eco-friendly hotel. Check out De Lanna Hotel here: or if you are planning a trip to Thailand, contact Pao at

Vanessa Sturgeon MBA'03 was among the high-caliber executives younger than 40 who were recognized for character and achievement in their careers, engagement in civic activities, volunteerism in the community and genuine passion for what they do, at the Portland Business Journal's Forty Under 40 Awards. Vanessa is president of TMT Development Company Inc., a Northwest property development and management organization that focuses on office towers and retail shopping centers. The company's properties include Fox Tower and the Broadway Building in Portland. The awards were given out February 18 at a reception in Portland, sponsored by Willamette University's MBA programs.

Kristin (Goodhue) Bauer MBA'05, accepted a new position as Vice President and Treasury Management Consultant at Umpqua Bank. She will be serving customers in the Mid Willamette Valley market, including Salem, Albany, Corvallis, an Eugene. Contact Kristin with your business banking needs at 503-559-2843 or

Willamette Valley Bank recently named AJ Nash '05, MBA'06 as the Corporate Market Expansion Officer. AJ joined Willamette Valley Bank in February from Integrity First Financial Services, PC where he worked as their Marketing Director developing business in the areas of tax, business law, finance & securities. AJ is active in his community, coaches soccer at McNary High School, and was recently awarded the 2009 Merchant of the Year at Keizer's First Citizens Banquet. Willamette Valley Bank was chartered in Salem, Oregon, in 2000 by a group of dedicated local business people who held a common vision and desire to help other businesses succeed in their ventures and provide Salem with a community bank run by local people. Since that time, Willamette Valley Bank has grown to $120 million in deposits and $139 million in total assets [December 2009].

Divyendra (Dave) Singh MBA'03 and his wife Nileshwari recently relocated to San Francisco from Boston. Dave took an inter-company transfer and is now the Director-West Coast for TalentBurst, Inc. TalentBurst specializes in IT and Professional Consulting Services and Dave's new role is to expand the business further on the west coast and develop strategic alliances.

Ann Jackson MBA'84 presented a session titled "Making Good Decisions at the End of Life: Lessons Learned" at a community discussion in Helena, Montana sponsored by The ACLU of Montana, with funding from Humanities Montana. The one-day conference featured both proponents and opponents of aid in dying, including representatives from the legal, civil liberties, faith, medical and disability rights communities as well as patients and families. Ann is a consultant and former Executive Director and CEO of Oregon Hospice Association in Portland, OR.

John Lindquist MM'99 has joined the Board of Directors for the Ogden/Weber Chamber of Commerce in Utah. The Board is comprised of business executives, education leaders and elected officials to promote the social and economic development of Weber County, Utah.

While Brittany Fisher MBA'97 continues in her role as Compliance Manager at Daimler Trucks North America, 2010 marks the official launch of her company, LB Fisher (online at She and her husband Lance started the company in 2008 with the goal of becoming the most efficient custom construction company in the Portland Metro area. "Coming from a place of service, leaving no detail overlooked, and offering transparency in all our processes, LB Fisher helps our clients to turn their home into the one they envision," writes Brittany.


Atkinson News


AACSB International Accreditation – Importance for Students and Graduates

AACSBThe reaffirmation of accreditation by AACSB International is an important and significant milestone for the Atkinson Graduate School of Management.  The School, our faculty, our curriculum and our processes undergo a rigorous review every five years by a panel of peer reviewers from other outstanding management and business schools across the country. 

Why is the Willamette MBA's AACSB International Accreditation Important?

Earning an MBA is a major step—and the degree should represent the hard work students put into it. Earning an MBA degree at an AACSB-accredited school provides the finest educational resources in the world and prepares graduates for a future of exceptional professional opportunities.

As you talk to colleagues, friends and family members who might be interested in earning their MBA, remind them of the value of AACSB International accreditation.  Here are two helpful websites from the AACSB International that detail the importance of accreditation:

Atkinson Management Today releases spring edition

Atkinson Management Today (AMT) is an electronic journal released twice yearly with content directed at mid-level management who are tasked with interpreting and implementing organizational strategy. The journal is intended as a resource for upwardly mobile managers, offering practical and contemporary articles on the methods, techniques and theory of management.

Students research, write and edit the journal based on their individual career areas of interest. The Spring 2010 edition includes:

"The Greening of Corporate Oregon" by LaRee Felton, MBA Candidate 2010

"What You Didn't Know About Your Colleagues" by Diana Ursachi, MBA Candidate 2010

"Greenbuild 2009 – A Personal Odyssey to Where Green Meets Greed" by Neil Bergquist, MBA Candidate 2010

"Atkinson's MBA Angels Take Flight" by Scott Weaver, MBA Candidate 2010

Read the latest edition online:

Don't Forget to Leave Your Mark – The Willamette MBA Worldwide Network

How powerful is the Willamette MBA network?  Put your "pin" on the Willamette MBA Google map to help us find out.  Write a little something about yourself and what you're doing – you can even include a photo!  Instructions on how to place your "pin" are available online (a Google login is required).

View the map and add your pin and information:




Upcoming Events


ReVisioning Value Conference - 2010 (ReVV Conference)

Sponsored by Willamette University MBA

April 26, 2010
8:30am - 7:00pm
Gerding Theater at the Armory
128 NW 11th Avenue
Portland, OR

This one day conference brings leaders from the various fields of impact investing and social innovation to share how the flow of capital is helping to create a more just and sustainable world. Dan Pallotta, author of "Uncharitable: How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential" will keynote the first (conference) day. A second "Workshop and Action" day is also available on Tuesday, April 27. Conference features the following speakers from Willamette University MBA: Mark Ahn, Associate Professor of Global Management and Yameen Ali, MBA Student.

Learn More and Register Online


Brownwater 2010

The tradition continues...


April 29 - May 1

An Atkinson tradition for more than 30 years, Brownwater is a three-day event put on by the Atkinson Student Association that celebrates Spring, graduation and the end of the academic year. Continue the tradition by celebrating with fellow alumni, faculty, staff and students.

Schedule of Events

Thursday, April 29
80's Rockband Night

Friday, April 30
Choate's Run
Casino Night

Saturday, May 1
Community Service Project
BBQ & Float

Learn More and RSVP for Brownwater Events Online


First Thursday Empowerment in Action Series

"Divas Doing Business" - Featuring Author, Entrepreneur and Oregon Women MBAs Board Member, Monique Hayward

Thursday, May 6, 2010
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
Living Room Theaters - SW 10th and Stark, Portland, OR

Monique Hayward is President & CEO of Nouveau Connoisseurs Corp., which she founded in April 2004 and most recently owned and operated the award-winning Dessert Noir Café & Bar in Beaverton, Oregon. Monique is also a senior marketing manager at Intel Corp. in Hillsboro, Oregon. She serves as a founding Board Member of the Oregon Women MBAs.

Monique is an entrepreneur and corporate player with more than 15 years of experience in marketing, communications, public relations, business development, and entrepreneurship. She has shared her knowledge and expertise as a contributing writer and interviewee for mainstream media like The Oregonian, The Denver Post, and CNN and online and print publications for entrepreneurs like Women Entrepreneurs – The Secrets of Success Blog, Entrepreneur, Black Enterprise, and Restaurant Startup & Growth. In Feb. 2009, Monique published her first book, Divas Doing Business: What the Guidebooks Don't Tell You About Being a Woman Entrepreneur. She's also a frequent speaker at conferences and colleges and a mentor to up-and-coming professionals and entrepreneurs.

About the Oregon Women MBAs:
Read More about "Divas Doing Business" on

Learn More and Register Online



Career Management and Coaching Workshops

Presented by Willamette University Executive Development Center

Developing Others through Mentoring and Coaching

May 14, 2010
8:30am - 4:30pm
Willamette University Portland Center
1120 NW Couch Street, Suite 450
Portland, OR

Develop your awareness and skills as a capable coach and mentor to others. How can you transfer the skills you learn to relationships where you are a mentor? How do you effectively "mentor" someone?

Transitioning with Resilience

May 21, 2010
8:30am - 4:30pm
Willamette University, 900 State Street
Salem, OR 97301

Explore and understand the rate of change in workplaces, especially as it continues to accelerate. Are your ready for change? How do you handle change?

Creating a Career Action Plan

June 4, 2010
8:30am - 4:30pm
Willamette University, 900 State Street
Salem, OR 97301

Putting it all together... The objective of this session is to develop a career action plan that integrates all aspects of this Certificate program.

Concluding Session: Coaching Forum

June 11, 2010
8:30am - 4:30pm
Willamette University Portland Center
1120 NW Couch Street, Suite 450
Portland, OR

Get ready to learn from the experts and boost your mentoring and coaching relationships. The objective of this session is to practice coaching for participants who attended at least seven of the previous certificate sessions.

Learn More and Register Online



Apr 16 PACE Not-for-Profit Final Presentations (Ford Hall)
Apr 23 PACE New Venture Final Presentations (Ford Hall)
Apr 29-May 1 Brownwater
May 8 Professor Henry Bi's Birthday
May 13 EDC Program Coordinator Judy Hampe's Birthday
May 13 Honor's Ceremony
May 14 Career Management and Coaching Workshop (Portland)
May 16 Commencement
May 21 Career Management and Coaching Workshop (Salem)
Jun 4 Career Management and Coaching Workshop (Salem)
Jun 11 Career Management and Coaching Workshop (Portland)
Jun 16 Associate Dean and Director of Admission Judy O'Neill's Birthday
Jun 20 Admission Counselor/Recruiter Desiree Vorhee's Birthday
Jun 27 Professor Michael Dothan's Birthday
Jun 30 Associate Dean Jim Myer's Birthday
[ alumni events calendar ]


Career Management


Update from the Career Management Team: Beth Ursin & Shelby Gould


Shelby GouldBeth UrsinInterim Employment Statistics: As of March 31st, job acceptances are up for the class of 2010 over 2009 (25% compared to 14%) but offers are slightly lower (30% compared to 32%). Internship acceptances are also slightly up from 2009 (18% compared to 16%). Thanks to all of you who have sent us job openings, hosted student groups or participated in campus events and coached our students one-on-one. It's truly been an amazing year of the AGSM community reaching out to help students in this economy. I know that's made a huge difference.

March Career Events: Alum, Lea Anne Doolittle MBA'80 was invited to campus as an Executive-in-Residence and was a featured speaker at the Power Lunch on March 17th. Also in March, two panels hosted by student associations were held: National Association of Women MBA (NAWMBA) and the Atkinson Student Association (ASA). The student NAWMBA chapter put on a women's panel including our EDC Director, Anne Murray Allen and alums Patrice Altenhofen JD/MM'95 (Cascade Employers Association) and Ann Jackson MBA'84 (retired, Oregon Hospice Association). The Atkinson Student Association hosted a Leadership Panel with Joe Intile (GSL Solutions), College of Liberal Arts alum and AGSM Mentor Peter Wallmark '68 (Wallmark & Associates), and Ron Hittner '87, MBA'89 (Hittner & Associates). Students attended three treks last month. Career Management hosted a marketing trek to the Portland Trailblazers where students learned about Branding and Marketing in the Sports Industry and attended a Blazer Game. The Student Accounting Association hosted visits to Moss Adams and Perkins & Company and closed the day with a panel and resume reviews by representatives from Geffen, Deloitte, Moss Adams and AGSM alum Susan Hale '01, MBA'06 from Ernst & Young. The student Project Management Association (PMI) visited project management groups at Nike, hosted by Mike Ryan and PGE, hosted by Linda Read. Connie Plowman of Cadence helped the students organize the event. Finally, the International Student Association hosted a speaker, Jon Mandaville who talked about Palestine and A History of Blocked Statehood and Civil Rights.


Executive Development Center


Practitioner-Focused, Application Based - Certificate in Business Lawyering Upcoming Sessions

The Atkinson Graduate School of Management and the College of Law have developed a Certificate in Business Lawyering (CBL) that includes tools, resources and concepts to increase an attorney's value and productivity.  The program is delivered by highly experienced practitioners and academics with content that can be immediately applied to firms and organizations.  

Upcoming Sessions:

Understanding Where Finance and Legal Issues Meet
April 28, 2010 

Oregon: (CLE 7.0: 1.0 Ethics, 4.0 PS, 2.0 General)
Washington: (CLE 7.00 )

Comparing and Contrasting Legal with Business Strategy
May 19, 2010 
Oregon: (CLE 7: 6.0 PS, 1.0 General)
Washington: (CLE 6.5)

Integrating Organizational Dynamics with Legal Issues
June 16, 2010
Oregon: (CLE 6.5: 1.0 Ethics, 2.75 PS, 2.75 General)
Washington: (CLE 6.5)

View complete schedule online:

Become a better lawyer by thinking about business issues the way business decision-makers think about them. Prepare to be a partner or general counsel by building your expertise in the business side of your profession.

Contact to discuss upcoming sessions and program benefits.

View the CBL website:



Faculty News


Fred Thompson

Henry Bi recently had the following paper accepted for publication: H.H. Bi, J. Wang, D.K.J. Lin. 2010. Comprehensive citation index for research networks. IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering. Forthcoming.


Lisbeth ClausLisbeth ClausProfessor Lisbeth Claus spent spring break in Doha City, Qatar working with the U.S. universities that make up Education City. She was sponsored by the Qatar Foundation to prepare the universities' HR teams for their global HR role and certification. She also delivered a lecture on employer duty of care for employees crossing borders at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. While in Qatar she met with a prospective Atkinson student and her parents.

Additionally, Lisbeth had an article titled "Des salariés sous haute protection" published as the cover story in Entreprise et Carrieres, one of France's leading business magazines.


Hewlett Grant Award Recipients

Congratulations to the following Atkinson faculty members who were awarded a Hewlett Grant for 2010-11:

Polly Rizova for her proposal: Emergence and Dynamics of Work-Related Advice Social Networks: A Comparative Study in Business, Not-for-profit and Government Organizations

Mark Ahn, Larry Ettner, Rob Wiltbank, and Contributing Assistant Professor Jerry Zygmuntowicz for the proposal: GSM 612: Integrated Project to Assess, Recommend, and Implement Enhancements to the Capstone Course




Student News


MBA Students Volunteer Time and Skills to Help Develop Salem Youth

Members of AGSM's Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) student chapter volunteered as Mock Interviewers at Career Connections on March 11, 2010. The event is a lively and educational event to benefit Salem's youth - future workforce. It is an opportunity for over 600 local high school students to practice vital interviewing skills and speak with employers and training programs. SHRM student members volunteered as Mock Interviewers and provided valuable verbal and written feedback as students thought about college and professional opportunities. SHRM student participants: Evelyn Martinez, Luciana Yoshiyasu, Andrew Clark, Jessica Nelson, Diana Ursachi, and Career Management Advisor, Shelby Gould.


FranklinFull-time MBA Candidate Dan Maslanik accepted an offer to join Franklin Templeton Investments as part of their Future Associates program. The job will start in July in San Mateo, CA.


"Some men see things as they are and ask why. Others dream things that never were and ask why not."

George Bernard Shaw

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, Steve Nord, Pao Suwanwong, Vanessa Sturgeon, Kristin Bauer, AJ Nash, Dave Singh, Ann Jackson, John Lindquist, Brittany Fisher, Donna Banwarth, Henry Bi, Lisbeth Claus, Evelyn Martinez, and Dan Maslanik.

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