President’s Leadership Institute inaugural cohort announced

The President’s Leadership Institute, established by the Office of the President in 2022, is a new year-long professional development opportunity for Oglethorpe faculty and staff. Participants will explore the world of higher education, while gaining valuable, transferable leadership skills.

The inaugural cohort of faculty and staff who will participate is diverse, representing various disciplines, departments, offices, and programs:

Amanda Whooley, Associate Professor of Philosophy
Autumn Johnson, Senior Admission Counselor
Blake Petty, Director of Residence Life
Cecil Rose, Associate Director of Student Success
Ethan Hawkland, Assistant Director of Admission
Iona Wynter Parks, Lecturer in French
Isabelle Martinez, Assistant Director of Business and Finance
Jeffrey Collins, Senior Lecturer in Interdisciplinary Studies
Jessica Winestock, Senior Academic Program Manager
Katharine Zakos, Associate Professor of Communication Studies and Division I Chair
Katie Clark, Admission Counselor
Lejla Marijam Ibrahimbegovic, Lecturer of Core Studies
Lisa Conley, Director of Career Development
Marisa Atencio, Assistant Dean and Director of Global Education
Miriam Smith, Senior Director of Title IX and Equity
Rhana Gittens, Assistant Professor of Communication Studies
Sari-Jai Walker, Assistant Director of Student Rights and Responsibilities
Stephen Herschler Mattern, Professor of Politics and Core Co-Director
Thania Saintil, Advancement Coordinator

“At Oglethorpe, all of our faculty and staff are leaders and the PLI is aimed at enhancing leadership skills for existing and future leadership roles, thereby strengthening the leadership capacity across the university,” said President Nick Ladany. “We are a culture of lifelong learners and I commend those who continually engage in professional development, such as the PLI, as part of their professional activities.”

The institute will run from September 2022 through May 2023, with the cohort meeting monthly for an all-day session. President Ladany and members of the Senior Administrative Leadership Team (SALT) will lead the cohort through an exploration of personal leadership styles, analyses of trends and challenges within higher education and at Oglethorpe, and engaging team-building and networking activities.

“The Senior Administrative Leadership Team is excited to work with the inaugural cohort of the President’s Leadership Institute,” said Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Laura Renée Chandler, Ph.D., who is assisting with the institute’s development and curriculum coordination.

“We are deeply invested in the success of OU faculty and staff—both in their current roles and over the lifetime of their careers. PLI supports participants in thinking innovatively and strategically about their own leadership development and their future aspirations within higher education. These participants will emerge from the institute with stronger relationships to one another and as a powerful leadership cohort at OU. I am excited to see what they will accomplish.”

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