Double Dawg Maxine Burton Honored With Her Own Flower
Alumna Spotlight: Dr. Kimberly Osborne (PHD '06)
Alumna Spotlight: Mariah Domenech (BSED ’15)
UGA alumni named to Atlanta Business Chronicle’s 2016 30 Under 30
Building a welcoming and supportive campus community
Alumnus Spotlight: Peter Conlon (BBA '75)
Alumna Spotlight: Devin Clower (BFA ’08)
UGA awards the President’s Medal
Happy Founders Day, UGA!
UGA alumnus featured on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list
25 Alumni Named to Georgia Trend’s ‘100 Most Influential Georgians’
UGA alumnus featured on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list
Study shows UGA has a $4.4 billion economic impact on Georgia
Written by Whitten: Year-End Gratitude
End of the Year Reflection
Alumnus Spotlight: Drew Cronic (BSED '97)
UGA Alumni Association supports Black UGA Reunion
University of Georgia alumnus to lead USG Board
UGA receives $1.49 million grant for HIV, TB research training in Uganda
True and loyal be.
UGA honors The Coca-Cola Foundation for its support of academics
Alumna Spotlight: Emily Scofield (MS '99)
Drumroll, please ... announcing the 2016 Bulldog 100!
UGA to launch inclusive, post-secondary education program in 2017
Alumna recognized by L’Oreal Paris’ Women of Worth Program
umano on Shark Tank
World Kindness Day
Interview with Ted Barco, director of the Student Veterans Resource Center
UGA law grad confirmed as vice chancellor on the Delaware Court of Chancery
Former Georgia Bulldog endows scholarships at UGA
UGA debate teams win Vanderbilt college debate tournament
UGA Miracle Rivalry Week
2015 40 Under 40 honoree Arthur Tripp, Jr (AB '09) named assistant to the president
Grady grads give back, help hire students
The power of THANK YOU
Ryan Seacrest to headline UGA’s spring Commencement ceremony, receive honorary degree
Introducing UGA Black Alumni
UGA Alumni Association Supports UGA iGEM’s Competition Success
Alumnus Spotlight: John Christopher “Kit” Cummings (BBA ’89)
Alumnus Spotlight: Jack B. Hood (AB ’69, JD ’71)
Alumnus and longtime supporter brings NASA to campus
Alumnus Spotlight: Joey Shonka (BS ’05)
Adeline Kenerly ’16 Named New Miss Georgia 2015
Checking in with Marc Gorlin (ABJ ‘95), No.1 Bulldog 100 business owner
UGA student honors grandfather with charity golf tournament
2015 UGA Farm Tour in Northeast Georgia
Thank you to the 2015 40 Under 40 Sponsors
Bigger than me: Alumna remembers first game day
Alumna Spotlight: Ailsa Von Dobeneck (BS ’07)
UGA students row for hemophilia research
UGA Virtual Networking: Meet a Bulldog
Alumnus Spotlight: Brinkley Warren (ABJ ‘05, MA ‘12)
Welcome back, students!
UGA alumnus honors wife’s memory through lung cancer awareness efforts
UGA to reduce class sizes by hiring faculty, adding more than 300 course sections
UGA Majorette is No. 1 College Twirler
Alumna’s songs featured on HBO’s “True Detective”
UGA’s Scott Angle selected to lead international agricultural organization
Seeking photos of young alumni
Record-breaking year: UGA fundraising hits ‘unprecedented level’
Alumnus Spotlight: Matt Tommey (BSED '96)
Alumna Spotlight: Former Gymdog Marcia Newby-Goodman (BSA ’10)
“Big Man on Campus” turns 90
Alumnus named Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s 2015 Atlanta Man of the Year
Alumna Spotlight: Jennifer Bellamy (ABJ '08)
2015 Young Alumni Night at SweetWater Brewing Company
UGA builds tomorrow’s leaders with new partnership
Grab your shades, UGA is heading to California!
UGA Career Center Services for Alumni
Launched during the 2015 Homecoming Weekend in October, UGA Black Alumni is the official affinity group for black graduates of the University of Georgia. Similar to the Women of UGA program, UGA Black Alumni exists underneath the umbrella of the UGA Alumni Association and seeks to connect black alumni and students.
Each year, UGA enrolls an increasingly diverse student population and it is important to connect alumni and students with shared experiences to continue building a welcoming and supportive campus community.
“As a student and an alumna, one thing I felt was missing from my UGA experience was the presence and mentorship of UGA alumni who looked like me. In 2008, I saw the first Black Alumni Homecoming Tailgate on Myers Quad and was full of emotion,” said Ambre Reed (BSFCS ’09), a member of the UGA Black Alumni Leadership Council. “The creation of UGA Black Alumni and its Black Alumni Leadership Council is so important to our community. Becoming involved was a no-brainer for me.”
The mission of UGA Black Alumni is five-fold: recruit black students, faculty and staff; support black students to completion of a degree program; engage current students and alumni by mentoring and professional development; ‘friendraising’ and fundraising for UGA needs; and serve as UGA ambassadors in the community and to fellow Bulldogs
Raymond Phillips (BS ’12), another member of the UGA Black Alumni Leadership Council says that groups like UGA Black Alumni and Women of UGA send an important message to the university community, as well as prospective students.
“The time and resources the university is investing into UGA Black Alumni demonstrates its commitment to diversity and inclusion,” he said. “This investment shows there is a place for everyone at UGA, regardless of one’s race, gender or age.”
Reed echoed this message.
“The creation of UGA Black Alumni sends the message that the university not only sees diversity as an asset while on campus, but after graduation, too,” she said.
Serving as an ambassador for UGA, a key part of the group’s mission, involves activities like participating in Give That Dawg a Bone, a card-writing campaign in partnership with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, which invites alumni to write notes to accepted students, encouraging them to call UGA home for the next four years.
Members of UGA Black Alumni also are invited to attend information sessions and recruitment fairs throughout the year, where they can educate talented black high school students about UGA, its traditions and culture.
Reed admits that as a high school student, she never considered attending UGA. It was not until a black recruiter visited her high school in metro Atlanta and spoke about UGA with passion and pride that she realized it could be a place that she, a black student, could feel accepted and comfortable.
The services that are now a core part of UGA Black Alumni are what helped recruit Ambre and are what will help recruit more talented and diverse students in the future.
Another key component of UGA Black Alumni is raising funds for the Black Alumni Scholarship, which supports up to four students a year. Charles Orgbon III, a member of the Class of 2017 and recipient of the Black Alumni Scholarship, is CEO of Greening Forward, one of America’s largest youth-driven environmental organizations. It is talented students like Orgbon, who are supported by the important work of UGA Black Alumni, that are helping to further cement UGA’s reputation as a top-tier public institution.
The UGA Alumni Association is proud to support UGA Black Alumni as it continues to engage the university’s more than 288,000 alumni around the world.
To learn more about UGA Black Alumni, visit www.alumni.uga.edu/blackalumni.
Interested in joining Ambre and Raymond on the Black Alumni Leadership Council? Click here.
To support students like Charles Orgbon III and other recipients of the Black Alumni Scholarship, click here.
Whenever you go out to look for flowers that can add a pop of color to your home or garden this spring, be sure to keep your eye out for the “Maxine” Dianthus, named after alumna and founder of burton + BURTON, Maxine Burton (BSED ’72, MED ’78).
In European culture, queens and heads of state have had flowers named after them in their honor. Because of this esteemed tradition, the International Floriculture Exposition (IFE) has only awarded 6 people, including Maxine, with their own flower.
With the help of her family, Maxine and her husband founded their company, burton + BURTON, in 1982. Today, it has grown into one of the largest distributors of balloons and coordinating gifts in the world and has helped the floral industry to flourish as well.
The “Maxine” Dianthus is a fun, solid pink colored dianthus, making it the perfect fit for a bright, go-getter who has dedicated 33 years to the balloon, hard goods, and décor industry.
The award was presented to her at this past year’s International Floriculture Exposition in Chicago. The award was kept a secret in order to surprise her at the exposition.
In light of receiving the award, Burton said, “To be recognized by people with whom I have so much history and so much respect is an incredible honor, not just for me, but for our entire burton + BURTON family.”
Congratulations Maxine on this outstanding honor!
Digital Specialist Jamie Lewis (AB '12, AB '12) recently interviewed alumna Dr. Kim Osborne (PHD '06). Osborne is a professor at Purdue University and was named the inaugural C-SPAN Endowed Chair at Purdue's Brian Lamb School of Communications.
You were named to the C-SPAN Endowed Chair at the Brian Lamb School of Communications at Purdue. Can you tell me a little bit about that position?
The C-SPAN Chair is a new position at Purdue in 2015-2016, and I am honored to be selected as the inaugural recipient of this prestigious endowment. It is a terrific fit for me because of my background in both public affairs and communication, which are areas central to C-SPAN’s mission. As a scholar, my academic expertise includes cultural studies, program planning, power/hegemony and media literacy.
Before I started at Purdue, I worked for two Cabinet-level federal agencies, in domestic and international roles, and I also have more than two decades of experience with corporations, nonprofits, top PR agencies, and media outlets worldwide helping to shape public opinion and public policy. At Purdue, I speak and teach, I serve on national boards, and I mentor the next generation of public affairs and strategic communications practitioners. It is rewarding to help guide young people whose skill set will impact decision making – from the U.S. Congress to statehouses to corporations nationwide.
Your resume boasts a variety of accomplishments. What are some accomplishments of which you are most proud?
It seems like I have lived many lifetimes in one, and this has made my life interesting. Professionally, my recent assignment as the Chief Strategic Communications Advisor to the Afghan National Security Forces made me proud. I was the U.S. Department of Defense’s top civilian communications advisor to Afghanistan’s defense ministries in Kabul. In addition to my day-to-day duties mentoring senior leaders in the Afghan Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Interior, I was tasked with “fixing” the “broken” communications function in the Afghan National Army. (Did I mention that I had never worked in a war zone before?) My plan provided recommendations for major organizational improvements, identified training needs and remediation, and proposed more proactive and strategic messaging focused on the end of Operation Enduring Freedom, the upcoming presidential elections, and other major high-stakes, high-visibility endeavors.
Additionally, I guided senior military personnel in the development of the first strategic communications plan for the Afghan National Army, and I led efforts by ISAF’s Ministerial Engagement Team and the U.S. Defense Department’s Ministerial Advisory Group. For my part, the Afghan National Army’s Director of Strategic Communications called me “the best advisor I ever had … in spite of being a woman.”
Personally, I have done a lot of things that make me proud. One of them is saying yes when a woman asked me if I believed in her dreams. She approached me at a speaking engagement in Los Angeles, and she told me she wanted to start a leadership development program to send young adults to Ethiopia to do service work. She asked if I thought she could do it and if I would give her advice. Today, she is the executive director of a start-up nonprofit organization called Ethiopian Diaspora Fellowship. In the first year, EDF sent five young people from the Ethiopian diaspora – including one UGA graduate -- to Addis Ababa for six months where they worked with community partners to build capacity in sub-Saharan Africa. In a recent meeting, Ethiopia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs asked if EDF could expand their program and model to other western nations and bring even more help to Ethiopia. I am officially the organization’s “strategic advisor,” but I am always introduced as the “person who said yes.”
You earned your Ph.D. in adult education at UGA. What attracted you to UGA? Do any particular memories of your time in Athens stand out?
After I executed the public launch of Kelly Educational Staffing, which became the fastest-growing, most profitable business unit in (Fortune 500 professional services supplier) Kelly Services’ history, I’d become tired of Michigan’s winter weather. UGA’s Office of Public Affairs offered me a job in which I would help elevate the institution’s profile in the national media, and I did not hesitate to move south. In the decade that I worked and studied at UGA, I have more fond memories than I can recount in this space. Academically, I am grateful for the opportunity to study with several of the most esteemed scholars in the field of adult education and to have graduated from the top program in the discipline. Professionally, I enjoyed starting the Amazing Student feature on UGA's website with my colleague, Janet Beckley, because I got to learn about and showcase so many talented Dawgs. I also enjoyed working as the first coordinator of the joint program between UGA’s Office of External Affairs, the Office of the President, and the Athletic Association where we featured UGA’s top teaching, research and service faculty on the field during home football games - which helps remind the Bulldog Nation that there is a university attached to its football team!
If you could give one piece of advice to UGA students as they prepare for internships and graduation, what would it be?
Be bold. Dare to dream. Take chances. Live the life you wish for. Think outside the box. Color outside the lines. Blaze new trails. I think back to when I was graduating from college, and I want to take that 22-year-old version of myself and hug her. I want to tell her to worry less and risk more. I want to tell her it will turn out to be more amazing than she can imagine. I want to tell her not to be so concerned about what other people think. And I want to assure her that it’s okay if you don’t know what you want to be when you grow up. Try one thing, and when it’s time to try something else, then do that. You only have all the answers when you look back at your life, never when you look ahead. It blows my mind to think about what a pivotal and transformational time this is in human history. What incredible opportunities we have to influence the course of events-for ourselves, for other people, for societies and for humankind! Do something positive. Inspire others. Make the world a better place.
The UGA Alumni Association welcomes Mariah Domenech (BSED ’15) as today’s guest blogger. Mariah is a Georgia Fund scholarship recipient who studied abroad this past fall in Spain. The Georgia Fund is the annual giving program to support academic and alumni initiatives at UGA. Georgia Fund gifts enrich the lives and experiences of students, faculty and alumni, wherever they are engaged in advancing the University's mission - on campus, around the state or abroad. For Mariah, this trip would not have been possible without generous support from alumni and friends.
"Teaching in Spain was a lifechanging experience. Being completely submerged in such a different culture was nerve-wracking. I wasn’t sure what mannerisms were appropriate or how to ask for things without coming off as rude; it took a lot of observing my surroundings in order to find out the proper way to interact with others. It also took a lot of me asking my host family a ton of questions whenever I didn’t know or understand something. The school system is so different from what I am used to in the United States. The teachers were more affectionate and open with their students; there was more physical interaction than what I was used to. Seeing new, beautiful landscapes and interacting with new people and gaining such an amazing experience is something I may have never been able to experience if it was not for the OIE - Alumni Association Study Abroad Fellowship. I am beyond thankful for receiving this scholarship that made it possible for me to study abroad in Spain."
In December, Mariah graduated from UGA with a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education. She is currently pursuing a graduate degree from the College of Education. To learn more about Mariah’s study abroad experience, click here.