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Class Notes

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Check out our January edition of Class Notes! Please submit your own Class Note via our online form. We’ll feature you in the next email edition, online, in College of Charleston Magazine, and possibly even on our social media channels on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Here are just a few highlights from the January edition.

January 2019


Neil Draisin and Carolyn Feinberg Draisin received honorary doctorates of humane letters from the CofC at December commencement in recognition of their support of education and outstanding community service. Dr. Draisin has maintained a private optometry practice in Charleston since 1972 and currently serves on the CofC Foundation Board of Directors. Mrs. Draisin, a teacher for more than 20 years, has helped shape future educators through her devotion to mentoring student teachers. They reside on the Isle of Palms, SC.


Wallace Jenkins, of Mt. Pleasant, SC, received the 2018 Conservationist of the Year Award from the S.C. Chapter of American Fisheries Society in recognition of his many contributions to fisheries science and management during his 40 plus years with the S.C. Department of Natural Resources.


Donny Schaeffer, of Charleston, SC, is Director of Land Development for New Leaf Builders. He and his team are completing a new townhome community in Mount Pleasant called Sea Island Hamlet.

Susan Skinner Wilson retired as a Senior Business Analyst in December after 37 years of employment with Palmetto Health in Columbia, SC. She is looking forward to traveling and spending time with family and her two grandchildren, ages 1 and 6, on the family farm in Blythewood, SC.


Greg Padgett received an honorary doctorate of humane letters at the College's December commencement in recognition of his devoted service to his alma mater. He is the Chief Financial Officer for Fennell Holdings Inc., a Charleston-based investment holding company. He has worked tirelessly for the College, serving on the CofC Board of Trustees, the CofC Foundation Board of Directors and the CofC Cougar Club Board. He currently serves on the CofC School of Business Board of Governors and recently held a seat on the CofC Presidential Search Committee.


Patricia Bustamante is Chief of Central Library for the Houston Public Library in Texas.


Chloe Knight Tonney was recently named President and CEO of Trident United Way in North Charleston, SC. She has spent the last 16 years with the Centers for Disease Control Foundation in Atlanta, most recently as the Chief Innovation and Strategy Officer.


Sabra Horne is the Director of the Organizational Change Management Initiative at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in Washington, D.C. She was the commencement speaker at the College's winter commencement ceremony on December 15, 2018, and received an honorary doctorate of humane letters. Sabra also serves on the College's School of Humanities and Social Sciences Dean's Council.


Vandy Harrell received his Certificate in Pharmaceutical Marketing from the Kellogg School of Business at Northwestern University in 1998. He is the Senior Director of Sales in the Opthalmics Business Unit for Shire in Atlanta, GA. He and his wife, Katherine Whiteman Harrell '91, have two daughters, Emily and Caroline.


Bea Walters Smith was named the Executive Director of the Spartanburg Community College Foundation, in Spartangburg, SC, in March 2017 after a 15-year tenure at USC Upstate in the Development Department.


Chris Crolley is the Owner of Coastal Expeditions, a local nature-based tourism business with fewer than 20 employees, three of whom are also alumni. Coastal Expeditions, based in Mt. Pleasant, SC, is the first recipient of the Association of Fundraising Professionals Lowcountry Chapter's Outstanding Small Business Award.

Adrienne Shaw Grayson Frizzell is the Executive Director for the American Heart Association – Lowcountry which is currently funding more than $4 million of groundbreaking research that targets health disparities in the Charleston, SC area.


Alice Sanders Hardy has joined the Summerville, SC, office of AgentOwned Realty as a Realtor.


Marty Stockdale attained product focus certification as a Certified Product Manager for Canon Solutions America in Boca Raton, FL.

Neysa Burkes Williams retired after more than 20 years of service in the U.S. Army. She is now the Public Affairs Specialist for Moncrief Army Health Clinic at Fort Jackson training base in Columbia, SC. She serves on the CofC Alumni Association Board of Directors and the Black Alumni Council.


Cheryl Fennimore Fulton is Practice Director at Randstad Professionals. She and her husband, Jason, live in Atlanta with their three daughters.

Preston Mitchell is the new Director of Development Services in Johnson City, TN. He is living in downtown Johnson City with his wife, Rosemary, and their 2-year old son, Jack.


Jay Keck is Habitat Education Manager for the South Carolina Wildlife Federation in Columbia, SC. In his new role, he will plan, coordinate, implement, and oversee education programs designed to encourage the creation or enhancement of wildlife habitats in backyards, parks, schoolyards, and business property.


Whitley Moretti Boyd has joined Carolina One Real Estate as a Realtor in the Long Point Road, Mount Pleasant, SC office. She and her husband, Clay, have two sons and live in Mount Pleasant. Whitley is also an officer in the Lowcountry (Charleston) CofC Club.

Meg Keally Counts is Community Relations and Events Manager at Pilot Flying J in Knoxville, TN. Meg was nominated in the Knox News 40 Under 40 for leading a $2M charitable campaign for the company's 60th anniversary.


Jeremy Baker of Moncks Corner, SC, has been promoted to Chief Deputy of the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office. He has more than 17 years of law enforcement experience.

Ry Hudnall is President and General Agent of MassMutual South Carolina where he earned the "Best Year Ever" award in 2017 for the first time in the company's 50-plus years in business. A resident of Mt. Pleasant, SC, he was also featured in Charleston Magazine as one of the 2018 Faces of Charleston.

Jim Marshall joined Omega Construction, Inc. in November as a Project Manager. He resides in Savannah, GA, with his wife, Kate Brockington Marshall '03, and three young children.


Colleen Connor is Director of Advancement at the New Orleans Culinary & Hospitality Institute in Louisiana.

Casey Black DeSantis is the new First Lady of Florida. Her husband, former U.S. Representative Ron DeSantis, was sworn in as Governor on January 7. She was previously a news and conversation television show host in the Jacksonville, FL, area.

Allison LeMaster Langridge and her husband, Sam, annouce the birth of their daughter, Beatrice Byrd "Byrdie" Langridge. Byrdie was born on November 26, 2018 and is their third daughter. The family lives in Maple Ridge, British Columbia.

Crystal Smith-Connelly released the Godly Acres web series, which she wrote and directed, in December 2018. Her one-act play, "The Intervention," will be included in 2Cents Theatre Group's Acting Out INK Fest in the spring. She and her husband, Kyle, live in Los Angeles.


John Bowden established Charleston Sails in 2008, and after a corporate buyout involving UK Sails, the new company, North Sails, became the world's largest sailmaking company. He is Regional Sales Manager of North Sails at the Charleston City Marina in Charleston, SC, where he helps design, build, repair, and sell equipment for a broad array of boats.

Chris Burden, a resident of Bluffton, SC, is Head of Development at Timbers Resorts and has opened Timbers Kiawah, the first private residence club on Kiawah Island, SC.

Joe Cunningham has been elected U.S. Representative for the 1st Congressional District of South Carolina. He is the first CofC alumnus to serve in Congress since 1995. He and his wife, Amanda, live in Charleston and have a son, Boone.

Ashley LeeAnn Plexico married William McLaurin Thompkins III on November 17, 2018, in Andrews, SC. She is employed by the Georgetown County School District at Andrews Elementary in Andrews, SC.


Christine File Zamboki earned her MEd from The Citadel, and is Director of Early Learning for the Charleston County School District. She lives on the Isle of Palms, SC.


Kristin Robinson Goulet, of Mount Pleasant, SC, is a Partner Success Manager for headquartered in Atlanta.

Cassi Karish married Jason Ruggles, in Pittsburgh, PA on September 2, 2018.

Kristina Montanaro Schrader has been elected to partnership with the Adams and Reese law firm. She practices in the firm's Nashville, TN, office and serves as Adams and Reese's Anti-Counterfeiting Team Leader. She crafts modern brand and content protection strategies for a wide range of multinational business in her global intellectual property practice, which also includes representation in the areas of cybersecurity, entertainment, and new media. She received her LL.M from the George Washington University Law School in 2011 and her JD from Vanderbilt University Law School in 2010.


Amanda Becker Creech and her husband,Alex, announce the birth of their daughter, Parker Elaine, on September 28, 2018. She is a Realtor at the Berkshire Hathaway Ponte Vedra/Nocatee office in Florida.

Jaclyn Koblos Jenkins opened Farm School, LLC in 2016 which teaches children how to farm. She is the President of the school and it has since been featured nationally on VOA News and was voted by Posh Magazine as one of the top 30 private schools in Northern Virginia, Washington, D.C., and suburban Maryland area in 2018. She lives with her husband, Kenny, and their four children in Hamilton, VA.

Wes Knight is a former professional soccer player and now CEO of Creating Space Movement in Charlotte, NC.


Ernest Brevard received his EdD in Curriculum and Instruction from Capella University in December 2018. He currently serves as Special Assistant to the Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Success at Morgan State University in Baltimore, MD.

Seaton Brown has taken a new role as Director of MBA Admissions for the School of Business at the CofC in Charleston, SC.

Josie Harris, of Charleston, SC, married Warrick McZeke at the Garden Cafe in York, SC. He proposed to Josie at the 2017 Carolina Country Music Fest with help from his college roommate, Lee Brice.

Megan Donley Mills has joined the Charleston Parks Conservancy as Community Engagement Manager. She and her husband, Eric, live in Charleston, SC.

Madeline Wallace O'Brien started a new job with Clark County Food Bank in Vancouver, WA as the Development Coordinator, helping to alleviate hunger and its root causes.

Cara Gelber Rehfuss and her husband, Jon, announce the birth of their son, Benjamin Taylor, on October 25, 2018. The Rehfuss family lives in Gainesville, FL.

Skylar Stetten works for Pura Soul Photography in Encinitas, CA photographing weddings, interiors, and commercial travel.


Bill Dyer earned his MA in linguistics from the University of Iowa in 2018, and is beginning a PhD program at the University of Florida. He married Asala Bani Mustafa, on July 21, 2018, and they live in Gainesville, FL.

Tory Rebhun received her graduate certificate in digital product design from the University of Colorado - Boulder Digital Works in 2014. She is a UX Researcher at Starz Entertainment in Englewood, CO.

Austin Ruedrich is a Physical Therapist for Encompass Health in Clearwater, FL. She earned her doctorate in physical therapy from Emory University in Atlanta, GA, in 2013.

Ali Titus (MPA), a resident of Mt. Pleasant, SC, is a member of the 2019 Women's Rights and Empowerment Network Summit Planning Committee. She is also the Program Coordinator & Communication Assistant Director for the CofC's MPA Program.


Jenna Marie Moore is Owner of Fourteen & East, a West Ashley neighborhood boutique providing unique, local, handmade items in Charleston, SC. She was featured in Charleston Magazine as one of the 2018 Faces of Charleston.

Clifford Pate and Lauren Miller '06 were married on Gold Bug Island on May 13, 2017.


Tyler Gilliam is an associate at the law firm, Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, in Charleston, SC. He recently graduated from Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce's Leadership Discovery, a skills-based leadership program. He focuses his practice on business and real estate tax planning, with an emphasis on limited liability companies and partnerships.

Shateara Hall is CEO of Empiriclee in Boston, MA, a start-up that collects and sells real-time public polling data. She earned a master's degree in public policy from Vanderbilt University in 2015.

Rob Harding is Vice President and Branch Manager of Robert Half International in Charlotte, NC.


Greig Samuelson, of Charleston, SC, was promoted to Training Officer for Charleston County EMS in December 2016, and credits his leadership experience at CofC EMS for his current position and promotions through the ranks. In August 2018, he presented the Charleston County EMS Tele Mental Health Project to the S.C. Association of Counties for which his team was awarded the J. Mitchell Graham Award.

Karahn Washington is Owner and CEO of DeBerkeley, LLC in Clemson, SC. He is also Chairman of the Small Business Council at the Clemson Area Chamber. Under his leadership, the Chamber is hosting their first Business & Community Expo featuring A Taste of Clemson on February 12.


Bailey Peters (MBA), of Charleston, SC, married Matt Prendergast on February 17, 2018, beneath the "Wedding Tree" at the Legare Waring House in Charleston.

Bryana Spann attended the College's summer diversity program, SPECTRA, and later graduated with a degree in international business. Upon graduation, she attended the University of Baltimore School of Law and is now a law clerk for the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary in Washington, D.C.

Chris Weekley is Product Owner at in Atlanta, GA. He is enrolled part-time at the Georgia Institute of Technology studying for his MBA from the Scheller College of Business.


Ross Drummond, of Chicago, IL, is Assistant Director of Events for the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago.

Drew Hyams (MS '16) recently moved back to Charleston, SC, to join Elliott Davis, LLC as Audit Senior, after working for Ernst & Young in Baltimore, MD, for the past three years.

Jack Wagstaff is a Police Officer with the Durham Police Department in Durham, NC. He was recognized by the Durham Chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness as the 2018 Crisis Intervention Officer of the Year. Jack joined the National Police Foundation as a Policing Fellow to help advance their mission of improving policing through science and innovation.


Jake Gregory, of Atlanta, GA, is Key Account Manager for Robert Bosch Tool Company.

Ashley Sprouse is the Assistant Editor of Digital Media for the Charleston Regional Business Journal in Charleston, SC.

Carly Wood and Patrick Walker were married in Daniel Island, SC on October 27, 2018.

Victoria Pittas, of Charleston, SC, married Troy Walters on May 5, 2018.


Lizzy Watkins married Charles Frazer, while hiking the Southern Crossing of New Zealand's Tararua National Forest in November 2018. Lizzy and Charles live in Auckland, New Zealand with their dog, Ziggy.

Katherine Lawson is Research Associate for FD Stonewater, a boutique real estate brokerage, investment, development, and asset management firm in Arlington, VA.

Andi McAfee has joined William Means Real Estate as an Agent in downtown Charleston, SC.

Sam Myers is a Financial Advisor for Edward Jones in Charleston, SC.


Morgan Godfrey is a graduate student at New York University in New York, NY, completing a master's degree in social work.

Stephen Redmon is enrolled at Life University in Marietta, GA, studying Chiropractic Medicine. He expects to earn his DC degree in 2021.

Evan Roth works for Lenox Advisors as a Relationship Manager in New York City, NY.

Emily Sandifer is a Biology Teacher at West Ashley High School in Charleston, SC. She was awarded the Guiding Light of Excellence Award by the Charleston County School District in December. The award was established this year to recognize an outstanding first-year teacher.