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Willamette | MBA | Atkinson Graduate School of Management

April 2013
administrative news
Message from the Dean

Dear Willamette MBA Community,

As another academic year draws to a close, we're working hard recruiting our next class of Willamette MBA students. Thank you in advance for your referrals to our MBA for Professionals and Early Career/Career Change MBA programs and for sending job and internship postings to our career management team.

We're excited about our new Alumni Referral Program for our evening MBA for Professionals in Portland and Salem.

As a reminder, when a Willamette MBA alumnus make a referral to the MBA for Professionals program and the referred candidate is admitted and enrolls, we'll credit $1000 to his or her tuition balance during the candidate's first semester in the alumnus' name. It's a great opportunity to empower someone to make a solid investment in his or her future and allows our alumni to extend their legacy as successful Willamette MBA graduates.

You can review the details of the referral program online: http://willamette.edu/mba/for_alumni/referral/

It is an exciting time at the Atkinson School and we are very grateful for your assistance.

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

alumni news

After 21 years with Northrop Grumman and its public safety division, Michael Kennedy MBA'84 has moved over to the consulting side of public safety with L.R. Kimball. Kimball is the largest public safety consulting firm in the world, dedicated to providing a full range of communications technology services. "After taking a position opening up the western United States," writes Michael, "I was recently promoted to lead the business development group for the entire division. One of our current clients is the State of Oregon Ofice of Emergency Management, which allowed me to visit Salem for the first time in many years."

In October 2012, Tom Geiger MBA'96 was promoted to Director, Program Management and Support Operations at Universal Avionics Systems Corporation in Redmond, Washington. Tom gets to work closely with Willamette Alum Barry Zirko '81.
On March 20, 2013, Juan Aguiar JD/MBA'02 presented the "Legal Aspects" and "Bid Selection" sections of Ecuador's Southeastern Oil Bidding Round Road Show in Singapore. Early in March he did a videoconference presentation for the Oil and Investment Law class of the University of Houston about various aspects of Ecuadorian law and hydrocarbon contracting.
Andy Yost MBA'06 recently obtained Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR) and Qualified Pension Administrator credentials. He was also promoted to Defined Benefit Analyst II at StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. "I'm very proud of Andy and the hard work he put into studying for his credential exams. His promotion is very well deserved," reports Andy's partner, Russell Yost (MBA '05).
Scott DeBo MBA'98 was promoted to managing partner of investment banking firm, Evolution Capital, in Salt Lake City. Scott mangages the micro cap portfolio and acts as interim CEO for several clients, including his managing role with NeuRho Farmacuetica, a genetic biomodeling firm that employs quantum physics mathmatics in search for a cure for Parkinson's Disease.
Scott Mason MBA'06 has accepted a postion as quality manager for Isovolta's Aviation and Transportation Division in Harrisburg, Oregon. "After seven years at Vision Plastics," says Scott, "I am looking forward to working in a different industry with new challenges and doing some traveling to other divisons abroad."
As the new legislative director for Common Ground OR-WA, Kris Nelson MM'97 is excited about recent progress: "We've managed to get a hearing on a bill to study the economic incentive effects of a local option land value tax in Oregon. Similar to an Enterprise Zone, it would phase in a lower property tax rate on improvements and compensate with a higher rate on land on a revenue neutral basis. We've seen bipartisan support so far. We're also developing a bill to study the economic effects of a clean air tax that would collect revenues from the greenhouse gas content of fossil fuels as is done in British Columbia. We're enthused with bipartisan support for this tool of economic resilience." See a recent report from PSU's NERC: www.sustainableprosperity.ca/dl872&display.
Fadi Bouri MBA'06 has been recently promoted to Director - Investment Banking at Emirates Investment Bank in Dubai, UAE.
Bobby Powers MBA'11 just started a new job as a Product Owner for Clearwater Analytics, an SaaS company in Boise, ID. Clearwater provides web-based investment accounting and performance software. Clearwater's clients include Cisco, Facebook, Oracle, Yahoo!, Intuit, and Starbucks. The company was recently named Idaho's Innovative Company of the year. Bobby will own the User Interface aspect of Clearwater's software, working alongside a team of developers to ensure client needs are met by Clearwater's product offering. Bobby was previously working as an Executive Team Leader of Logistics for Target Corporation.
In late February, Jorge Ordonez MBA'05 traveled to Guatemala as a consultant for the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC). He provided assistance to the National Commission on Electric Energy to (1) identify barriers that have hindered the development of geothermal renewable energy resources in Guatemala and (2) provide recommendations for overcoming such barriers. An article about his work was published in Prensa Libre: http://bit.ly/10h3Wt2. In 2011 and 2012, Jorge completed similar consulting projects for NARUC in Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Mexico. He currently works as a Senior Financial Economist for the Oregon Public Utility Commission in Salem.
Gary Duell '74, MBA'77 is teaching the next series of Retirement Success classes, in association with The Richness of Life Insitute. Classes will be held at Clackamas Community College on April 20 & 27th, 10am to 12:30pm. This is a 5 hour comprehensive course. $49 tuition includes 1.5" binder of material & after class one hour individual tutoring. Enroll at www.richnessoflife.org.

atkinson news

Alumni Book Club - Next Session April 24

The next session of the Willamette MBA Alumni Book Club will take place on April 24, 2013 at 9:05am PDT. Join us as we discuss Robert Pozen's book, Extreme Productivity.

Giant workload? Your leadership challenge - Getting more done!

In reading Extreme Productivity, you may:

  1. Be compelled to form some new habits.
  2. Get more done.
  3. Gain insight from a renowned expert.

The webinar is open to the first 100 alumni registrants. Sign up online.



Upcoming Events

Brownwater 2013
The Atkinson Brownwater tradition includes three days of fun events and social activities for students, faculty, staff and alumni to celebrate the end of the academic year. Events include: Brownwater

Thursday, April 25
80's Neon Dance Party TNO (9:00 PM at The Guest's Lounge)

Friday, April 26
Brownwater Golf Tournament (10:00 AM-1:30 PM at the Salem Golf Club)
Casino Night Dinner and Games (6:30 - 11:00 PM at Reed Opera House Trinity Ballroom)

Saturday, April 27
1st Year v. 2nd Year Soccer Game (10:00 AM - 12:00 PM at South Salem or West Salem High School - Exact Location TBA)
Brownwater Potluck BBQ and Mill Stream Float (12:00 - 5:00 PM at the Atkinson School Patio)

Learn more and RSVP for Brownwater events online

Brownwater t-shirts are for sale! T-shirts cost $10 in cash or check made out to Willamette University. Email Colleen Smith at smithc@willamette.edu for more information.

MBA for Professionals GMAT/GRE Prep Sessions and Social Events

The MBA for Professionals has a number of events this spring. Dean Debra Ringold will be hosting luncheons for current students, prospective students and alumni in Salem and Portland. GMAT/GRE Prep Sessions are being offered, along with other social events.

Check the Events Page for a listing of all upcoming events.

To RSVP, please contact Lisa Hylton (lhylton@willamette.edu).

Apr 12
PACE Not-for-Profit Final Presentations
Apr 19
PACE New Venture Final Presentations
Apr 24
Entrepreneurship/Angel Fund Speakers Series - Salem
May 1
Early Career and Career Change MBA Application Deadline
May 9
Atkinson Honors Ceremony
May 12
Willamette University Commencement
Jun 27
Portland Summer Gathering
Jul 12
Salem Mid-Summer Gathering
alumni events calendar
atkinson events calendar

career management
Update from Director of Career Management: Beth Ursin
The March rain and gray gloom did not damper the spirits of the Willamette MBA students in their career pursuits! As first-year students grow their professional network through informational interviews and search for summer internships, second-year students continue to apply, interview, and accept full-time positions upon graduation.    

Career Close Up Event: Personalized Career Fair and Case Study Mock Interviews

On March 15, Willamette MBA welcomed 23 employers on campus for the Spring Career Close Up Event. The Personalized Career Fair allowed MBA students to hear from several companies as well as have one-on-one appointments with employers of their choice to learn about opportunities within these organizations. Employers included: Avanade, Banfield Pet Hospital, Boys and Girls Club, Cambia Health Solutions, CampusPoint, Catholic Community Services, Country Financial, Daimler, Formic Media, Habitat for Humanity, Intel, Marion-Polk Food Share, Radha Consulting, Target Distribution, and several State of Oregon agencies including the Department of Human Services, Youth Authority, Parks and Recreation, and Health Authority.

In conjunction with the Personalized Career Fair, the student-led Atkinson Consulting Association hosted Case Study Mock Interviews. Mike Broberg from Hitachi Consulting shared insight on "How to Master the Case Study Interview" in the opening keynote message. Students then had the opportunity to practice this unique method of interviewing in a friendly competition. Prizes were awarded to the top three participants!

Company Treks
Willamette MBA students were excited to visit Hitachi Consulting and Kaiser Permanente in March on Company Treks. Their visit to Hitachi Consulting included hearing from and networking with several executives and consultants. Students interested in healthcare administration were thrilled to get a sneak peak at Kaiser Permanente's new Westside Medical Center in Hillsboro (not even open to the public yet!), where they learned about new technologies and systems being implemented, from the Chief Medical Officer and IT Director.

Job/Internship Search Club Formed
Students have formed a Job Search Club to encourage each other and to designate structured time to their search and application process. FISH (Friends In Support of Hiring) meets on a weekly basis.


executive development center
Executive Program for Attorneys in Business

This May the Willamette University Executive Development Center will present a unique program targeted to attorneys who work in business or make business decisions for their organizations.

The Leadership and Management for Attorneys in Business program offers a structured approach to business that provides the tools, resources and concepts to increase the value and productivity of any attorney working within a company. Participants will learn strategies to become better lawyers and leaders in their organizations by understanding and thinking about business issues the way business decision-makers think about them. Participating attorneys will learn:

  • to adjust to the role of legal adviser, project leader or active participant in management decisions within an organization
  • how legal advice relates to business strategy and financial statements
  • to solve problems for internal business partners to add value
  • to assess and manage legal risks within the context of acceptable business risks
  • to communicate more effectively within a company's culture and corporate governance

The program is delivered in an interactive learning format, May 5-9, 2013, at Willamette University's Portland, Oregon Center (opening dinner and panel of general counsels on May 5; 9:00am-5:00pm each day, except Thursday departure at 4:00pm). The sessions are designed to be highly interactive between the participants and instructors, who are experienced leaders and understand the intersection of legal and business issues. The program is approved for CLE's in Oregon and Washington.

For more information: http://willamette.edu/mba/executive/corporate_counsel/index.html

Competitive Intelligence One-Day Seminar April 24

The Executive Development Center, in association with contributing professor Sean Campbell, is pleased to present a one day seminar on competitive intelligence in Portland on April 24 titled "Building Competitive Strategies with Greater Insight."

Learn more about the program and register online for the 1-day session.


faculty news
Steven Maser and law professor, Sam Imperati have had their paper, "Why does anyone mediate if mediation risks psychological dissatisfaction, extra costs and manipulation? Three theories reveal paradoxes resolved by mediator standards of ethical practice," accepted for presentation at the 2013 Annual Conference of the International Association of Conflict Management in Tacoma, June 30-July 3.


staff news

We are sad to announce Kathy Yoder's departure from the Atkinson School. Since joining us over two years ago, Kathy has made significant contributions to many aspects of our operation. We will miss her great scheduling/coordinating skills, her attention to detail, and most important, her caring service to our students. Kathy reports that she has secured employment requiring less commuting time and while she will miss Atkinson, she will not miss the lengthy commute that she undertakes to be with us each day. Please join us in thanking Kathy and wishing her the very best of luck.

Leslie Berning will join us on April 15th. She has been an active member of the Willamette University community for over eight years and was Classified Employee of the Year in 2012. Leslie earned a BA in Japanese Language from the University of Oregon. She lived in Japan for seven years before returning to Salem where she grew up. While in Japan, she worked for the Japanese government and for a private high school. She also taught an evening course for adults interested in volunteering with the United Nations. Leslie is a Star Trek fan and her hobby is hot air ballooning. She is also restoring an 82 Z-car. She shares her southeast Salem home with her father, German Shepard, and three cats.


student news
BA/MBA Student's Robotics Lab at Willamette
Nilo Thomas, a current BA/MBA student, was recently featured on the main university website for starting Bearcat Robotics at Willamette University to bolster interest in science technology. Through Bearcat Robotics, Willamette students are immersed in competition-based programs. They promote math, science and technology at area elementary

and middle schools, and they learn about marketing, fundraising and technology. Last year, the club built a robot that works under water and entered it in a national competition in Arizona. Although they didn't win, they're not giving up. This summer, they hope to enter two racing robots in the same competition.

Read the full article here.

Students Shares About Life in Their Home Country
Current MBA students Hamid Parwani, Diaa Tahoun, Liujuan Li and Khadijah Mubaraki were invited by the Willamette University Language in Motion team to participate in Worldview at Willamette to talk about their home country and future goals. The presentation was to the ICL (Institute for Continued Learning) group which is the continuing education opportunity for retirees on Willamette's campus.

"It was an exciting opportunity and I had the chance to talk about myself as well as how studying in Atkinson Graduate School of Management would help me contribute to my country development," writes Hamid. "I was warmly welcomed and it was nice to respond to their questions about my country. Thank you to the Language in Motion team who connected me to so many great people in Salem, Oregon."

"The wisest person is not the one who has the fewest failures but the one who turns failures to best account."
Richard R. Grant

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 aakimoff@willamette.edu 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, Michael Kennedy, Tom Geiger, Juan Aguiar, Scott DeBo, Scott Mason, Kris Nelson, Fadi Bouri, Bobby Powers, Jessica Ordonez, Gary Duell, Colleen Smith, Beth Ursin, Steve Maser, and Hamid Parwani.

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 aakimoff@willamette.edu. 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 week before publication. 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

Willamette UniversityWillamette MBA (Atkinson School)