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Alumni Notes

December 2, 2008

Dan Ariely (Business Administration, Ph.D., ’98) is currently James B. Duke Professor at the Fuqua School of Business. His book, Predictably Irrational, spent months on both the New York Times and Wall Street Journal’s best-seller lists.

Charmeka Bosket (M.P.P.) is Director of Legislative and Political Analysis at South Carolina Business and Industry Political Education Committee (BIPEC). She was appointed by Senator John Courson, Chairman of the Senate Education Committee, as his business representative to the committee. She fills the un-expired term of Thomas DeLoach, who served on the committee from 2006 to 2008.

Joy Calico (Musicology, Ph.D., ’99) published Brecht at the Opera (University of California Press, 2008), the first full-length, systematic study of the artist’s ambivalent engagement with opera.

Cesare Casarino (Literature, Ph.D.), Associate Professor of Cultural Studies and Comparative Literature at the University of Minnesota, has a book titled In Praise of the Common (co-authored with Italian philosopher Antonio Negri) now in print with the University of Minnesota Press, 2008.

John D. Griffin (A.M., ’00; Ph.D., ’02) is co-author of Minority Report: Evaluating Political Equality in America, published by the University of Chicago Press. He is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame.

Maude Hines (Literature, Ph.D.) has received a Fulbright Fellowship to Germany and has been promoted to Associate Professor at Portland State University.

Lily Hirsch (Musicology, Ph.D., ’06) received a publication contract for Hitler’s Jewish Orchestra: Musical Politics in the Berlin Jewish Culture League (University of Michigan Press).

Abner L. “Woody” Holton (Ph.D., ’90) was named a finalist for the National Book Award for his most recent novel, Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution, which details the role of poor farmers and state governments in influencing the Bill of Rights.

Edgar Illas (Romance Studies, Ph.D.) has been appointed Assistant Professor, tenure-track, teaching Catalan Studies in the Department of Spanish & Portuguese at Indiana University, Bloomington.

Samuel B. Johnson (Mathematics, Ph.D.) was elected for a three-year term to the board of directors of Legal Aid of North Carolina (LANC). Among his professional associations, Johnson is a member of the NC Bar Association; the NC State Bar and the NC Gay Advocacy Legal Alliance. Johnson practiced law in Washington, DC for three years, primarily in the area of federal administrative law. Most of that work involved representing municipal airports from across the country before the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). He is now a solo practitioner in Greensboro and his practice is generally taken up by: (i) family law; (ii) estate planning for moderate and lower income couples, married and unmarried; (iii) competency matters; and (iv) court appointed work.
Legal Aid of North Carolina (LANC) is a statewide, nonprofit law firm that provides free legal services in civil matters to eligible, low-income people in all 100 counties in North Carolina through 24 offices located throughout the state.

Frank Li (Statistics, Ph.D., ’97 under guidance of Professor Mike West) has enjoyed his reputation as a well known practitioner in the arena of Risk Management. After 5 years’ service as a vice president of Reliant Energy Company, he has founded his own company, Spectrum Prime Solutions L.P. to apply risk theories and statistical algorithms to common industrial practices. As the executive vice president of the Chinese Association of Professionals in Science and Technology (CAPST), he is also devoted to introducing risk management education to Chinese academia, working with Chongqing University to set up an M.B.A./E.M.B.A. program.

Celia E. Naylor-Ojurongbe (A.M., ’93; Ph.D., ’97) is the author of African Cherokees in Indian Territory: From Chattel to Citizens, which details the history of enslaved and free African Cherokees forcibly removed from their homes in the 1830s and resettled on reservations in the Oklahoma Territory. Naylor is an assistant professor of history at Dartmouth College.

Brian Newman (A.M., ’00; Ph.D., ’03) is co-author of Minority Report: Evaluating Political Equality in America, published by the University of Chicago Press. He is an assistant professor of political science at Pepperdine University.

Susan Paddock (Statistics, Ph.D.) was promoted to Senior Statistician and Head of the RAND Statistics Group in May 2008.

Grant Ramsey (Philosophy, Ph.D., ’07) is an assistant professor in the philosophy department at Notre Dame. Notre Dame has presented an exhibition of photographs on Nicaragua taken while Ramsey was a graduate student at Duke.

Samia Rashid (M.S., ’99) has been named president of Infinisim.

Kerry Reichs (M.P.P., ’00) completed her first novel, The Best Day of Someone Else’s Life. Published by HarperCollins, the book follows Vi Connelly, a woman struggling to reconcile the idea of a traditional marriage and her own individuality.

Jennifer Reineke Pohlhaus (Ph.D., ’06) was elected to serve on the board of directors of the National Postdoctoral Association. She is in the second year of a Science and Technology Policy Fellowship sponsored by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The fellowship program is designed to allow scientists to “share their expertise with policymakers to encourage decision-making based on solid scientific principles.” She is working on maximizing the potential of women in biomedical careers in her position at the National Institutes of Health.

Roger G. Robins (Ph.D., ’99) received a Fulbright Scholarship to lecture in Japan for the 2008-2009 academic year. He will offer courses in American history and religion at the University of Tokyo.

Isis Sadek (Romance Studies, Ph.D.) has been appointed Assistant Professor, tenure-track, teaching Latin American and Brazilian literatures and cultures in the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Culture at the University of South Carolina.

Anil Sathia Nathan (Economics, Ph.D.) has been hired as an assistant professor of economics for the 2008-09 academic year at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts.

Michael J. Sorrell (J.D. and Public Policy, A.M.) was inaugurated as the thirty-fourth President of Paul Quinn College on November 7, 2008.

Sarah Stanbury Smith (English, Ph.D., ’80), a member of the Holy Cross faculty since 1992, has been promoted to full professor in the English department. She served as chair of the English department from 1997-1999. A recipient of the Arthur J. O’Leary Faculty Recognition Award, Stanbury has lectured all over the U.S. and abroad. She is the author of The Visual Object of Desire in Late Medieval England (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008) and is co-editor with Virginia Raguin, professor of visual arts at Holy Cross, of Women’s Space: Patronage, Place and Gender in the Medieval Church (SUNY Press, 2005). She developed a Web site with Raguin titled Mapping Margery Kempe: A Guide to Late Medieval and Spiritual Life, which was supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

Yu Wang (Cultural Anthropology, Ph.D., ’08) is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University’s Center for International Development.

In Memoriam

The Graduate School community extends its deepest sympathy to the family & friends of alumni who have recently passed away.

Jennifer Anne Fitzgerald (Ph.D. ' 04) of Appleton, WI, on December 23, 2007. She earned her B.A. with a major in music from Tufts University and a Ph.D. in music from Duke, in addition to a certificate in women's studies. She was an assistant professor of music at Lawrence University. She is survived by her partner, Charles; her parents; a stepfather; a stepmother; and a sister.