A Big Thank You to CAS Alumni Board

Posted on: November 26, 2013

Cas NewsThe College of Communication Arts & Sciences (CAS) now has nearly 50,000 alumni enriching lives around the world. We love learning about the remarkable work that CAS grads are doing, from producing films and authoring books, to leading groundbreaking research and creating products and services to fuel our global economy.

Our current board is comprised of an excellent roster of highly accomplished alumni. Headed by Diane Neal (BS, Retailing 1979) for the past three years, the Alumni Board meets several times a year to provide strategic guidance to me and the CAS advancement team, led by Meredith Jagutis. Collectively, the board represents a diverse array of outstanding graduates from all five of the college's departments.

They play a critical role in helping us identify and reach out to alumni who want to get more involved. By example, they demonstrate how alumni can help open doors for our students and faculty. Our board members also are readily available to help us energize local events held around the country and meet one-on-one with potential donors, corporate partners and student mentors.

As Dean of CAS, I am particularly grateful to the mentoring and guidance that current board members have provided to me over the past five years. The wealth of problem solving experience, creativity and contacts, as well as the encouragement and confidence that they graciously have shared has emboldened me and CAS staff to take on new challenges and advance the college's international reputation.

Board members can serve up to two terms with each term being three years. As we wrap up 2013, we have four board members who will reach the end of their second term, and therefore their last year on the board.

They include Diane Neal who has also served as board president from 2011 to 2013. Neal is an exemplary leader and role model for me and all who have the opportunity to interact with her. Diane, please accept my heartfelt appreciation for your dedication to MSU and CAS. Your vision and generosity will continue to benefit our students for many years to come, especially through the Diane Neal Student Excellence endowed scholarship.

Also finishing up their last term on the board are Jim Alexander (BA, Telecommunication 1985), Ed Cohen (BA, Telecommunication 1976; Ph.D., Mass Media 1988) and Jana O'Brien (BA, Advertising and Honors 1979; MA, Advertising 1980). Each of these individuals has helped shape the future of CAS and will hopefully continue to stay connected to our faculty and students. On behalf of the entire CAS family, thank you for making time in your highly successful careers to give back to the college and invest in our future global communicators.

I also want to welcome four new alumni to the board with their terms starting in January 2014. Jeff Genthner (BA, Telecommunication 1980), Chelsey (Susin) Kantor (BA, Advertising 2007), M.L. Elrick (BA, Journalism 1990) and Susan Goldberg (BA, Journalism 1984) have graciously accepted appointments to the board and bring an amazing level of energy and talent along with them. They are no strangers to CAS as each of them has been actively involved in the college in a variety of ways. Genthner (2013), Elrick (2013) and Goldberg (2005) has each been honored as CAS Outstanding Alumni and Kantor was honored with the CAS Rising Star Award this past May.

Genthner is Senior Vice President and General Manager for Fox Sports South in Atlanta, has visited CAS classrooms four times in the past two years, and participated in the Spartan Sports Journalism Classic last April.

Elrick is an investigative reporter for WJBK-TV/Channel 2 in the Detroit media market and also is a frequent guest speaker for CAS journalism classes.

Goldberg is Executive Editor for federal, state and local news with Bloomberg News in Washington, D.C., and has endowed the Susan Goldberg Scholarship in the MSU School of Journalism.

Kantor is a product marketing manager for G+ Thought Leadership in San Francisco and has served as a Media Sandbox coach in the past.

We are thrilled to have such a brilliant network of alumni who are willing to share their time and resources with the college, and help build a dynamic network of Spartans who appreciate the rewards that come with opening doors for the next generation of leaders.

Please know that on this Thanksgiving Day, each of you will be on my mind...in addition to a little football perhaps?

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