2021 HRSM Distinguished Alumni and Friends of the College Award Recipients
The University of South Carolina’s College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management
is proud to announce the winners of its 2021 Distinguished Alumni and Friends Awards.
The awards recognize alumni and industry partners who have established a strong record
of distinction in their respective fields and who exemplify responsible citizenship
within their communities.
HRSM Distinguished Alumni Award:
Peter Wallace is the director of ticket operations for the Durham Bulls, the Triple-A
affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays.
After earning his B.S. in sport administration in 1999, Wallace has distinguished
himself for more than two decades in professional sports. He has also served as a
mentor to numerous people in the industry and remained a strong supporter of the College
of HRSM. He and his wife currently live in Cary, N.C., with their two precocious sons.
Began career in MLS, worked with FIFA as the 2003 Women’s World Cup was relocated
from China to the United States. Celebrated first professional championship as a member of the D.C. United front office
Helped lead the Washington Nationals’ move from RFK Stadium to Nationals Park. Ticketed Pope Benedict’s Papal Mass for 45,000 celebrants in 2008.
Served as director of ticket operations for Durham Performing Arts Center, handling
touring Broadway shows, comedians including Jerry Seinfeld and Robin Williams, musicians
including Dolly Parton and Ringo Starr, and many other events.
Joined the Durham Bulls, Minor League Baseball’s most recognized franchise, in 2013
and has improved community engagement, leading to record-setting attendance, while
instituting new technology to make the ticket buying process easier and the fan experience
HRSM Distinguished Young Alumni Award:
Aaron Henderson is a certified NFL and NBA agent and director of football strategy
for Vanguard Sports Group.
Henderson earned his B.S. in sport and entertainment in 2013, followed by an MBA and
MSA from Ohio University in 2015 and a J.D. from Southwestern Law School in 2019.
He currently lives in Los Angeles, and has remained a strong supporter of the College
Founded his own independent sports agency at just 23 years old. In 2017, became one of the few NFL agents in history to represent a Top 100 NFL Draft
pick while still enrolled in law school.
Recognized as one of the Front Office Sports “Rising 25” in 2017, spotlighting outstanding
industry leaders 25 and younger.
Certified by the NFLPA in 2015 and the NBPA in 2018 as an agent, becoming one of the
youngest dual certified NFL and NBA agents ever.
His support has directly led to more than $100 million in new total contract money
for Vanguard’s clients.
Worked as a talent manager for legendary music producer Quincy Jones.
HRSM Distinguished Service Award:
Catherine Gustafson, PhD, CCM, CHE
A legend in the College of HRSM and a mentor to countless club management professionals,
Catherine Gustafson’s influence is beyond measure.
Gustafson was awarded the title of professor emerita in July 2021 after 26 years in
the College of HRSM and 34 years at UofSC. She continues teaching in the School of
Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management in that role.
Established and continues to facilitate pathways to career experience opportunities
for HRSM students with some of the world's top golf clubs, enabling hundreds of students
to work prestigious tournaments each year.
Earned her master’s degree and Ph.D. from UofSC after bachelor’s degree at Virginia
Certified Hospitality Educator, American Hotel and Lodging Association. Certified Club Manager, Club Management Association of America.
Author of 13 books, 10 book chapters, 8 instructor / student / training manuals, 36
refereed publications and more than 60 industry publications.
UofSC Garnet Apple Award winner, 2020. The Garnet Apple Award honors exceptional faculty
who demonstrate an ongoing commitment to best teaching practices and a record of developing
innovative strategies to enhance learning.
Developed the club management concentration at UofSC, one of only two such programs
officially endorsed by the Club Management Association of America. it also provides
an Academic Common Market pathway to UofSC’s bachelor's degree in hospitality management.
Distinguished Friend of the College Award:
The Isdell Family Foundation
The Isdell Family Foundation has been a strong supporter of the College of HRSM for
decades, since Cara Isdell Lee (now an Isdell Family Foundation trustee) was a student
at the college.
The foundation has given more than $134,000 in annual support to the College of HRSM.
The foundation has also supported the Dean’s Circle of Friends and been a member of
the President’s Society of the University of South Carolina since 2006.
Isdell Family Foundation Trustee E. Neville Isdell is the former chair (2004–2009)
and CEO (2004–2008) of Coca-Cola. He was a featured speaker in the HRSM Dean’s Executive
Lecture Series in 2012.
Cara Isdell Lee earned a B.S. in hospitality management from HRSM and regards Catherine
Gustafson as, “my mentor, a friend and someone I will never forget.” Cara Isdell Lee’s husband, Zak Lee, earned a B.S. in sport and entertainment management
The foundation has named a classroom in the Close-Hipp Building in honor of Cara Isdell
Lee and Zak Lee.
Previous Distinguished Alumni and Friends of the College Award Recipients
HRSM Distinguished Alumni Award:
Mamee Groves is regional vice president of food and beverage at ClubCorp, the largest
owner and operator of private clubs in the United States. She oversees the food and
beverage operations for 46 private golf, business and country clubs in the Mid-Atlantic
Groves earned her master’s degree in international hospitality and tourism management
in 2004 and was a national champion track and field student-athlete as an undergraduate
at the University of South Carolina. Her career began after meeting a regional director
for Hyatt Hotels at a career fair on campus.
She worked for Hyatt for 12 years, starting as an assistant restaurant manager and
working her way up to director of operations at the Hyatt on Capitol Hill in Washington,
Moving to ClubCorp in 2016, she served as a regional director of food and beverage
before earning promotion to regional vice president in 2019.
While with Hyatt she was a three-time manager of the quarter and served as chair for
Women@Hyatt and Hyatt Black Diversity initiatives. She is also a certified sommelier
and a member of the Women in Food Service forum and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.
Groves has remained involved with the College of HRSM, serving as a mentor and professional
development champion for students. She has given numerous guest lectures, supported
scholarship fundraisers and assisted students and fellow alumni with career networking.
HRSM Distinguished Young Alumni Award:
Ava Jones is the director of operations with Contemporary Services Corporation (CSC)
Louisville. CSC is a crowd management and security company serving more than 200 cities
in the United States and Canada.
As Louisville director of operations, Jones serves as event security director for
Churchill Downs. She manages all security needs for the Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Oaks,
Thurby and other events, leading teams of more than 1,000 people.
Jones emerged as a star in her first year at the University of South Carolina, earning
a job at the London Olympics. She also completed a student internship with USA Triathlon,
earning a promotion to membership services coordinator. While on campus, she served
as director for the Sport Entertainment and Venues Tomorrow (SEVT) Conference and
volunteered her time as an HRSM ambassador.
Since graduating magna cum laude with her bachelor’s degree in sport and entertainment
management in 2014, Jones has risen quickly in the industry. She began working with
CSC in 2017 and made a name for herself in Miami, running Miami Marlins games, Florida
Atlantic University athletics events, and BB&T Center events.
She helped launch the Spokane branch of CSC in January 2019, then accepted her current
role at Churchill in October of the same year. In 2019 alone, she helped run 626 events,
including seven in a single day.
During her still-young career, she has already worked the Olympics, two Masters tournaments,
two Indy 500 races, national governing bodies national and world championships, games
in the NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB along with many NCAA events, the Super Bowl, arena and
stadium concerts, Broadway shows, political events including the Democratic National
Convention, and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo (one of the largest events of
its kind in the world).
Due in part to her work, CSC Spokane earned the company’s Branch of the Year Award
Jones has been quick to help the sport and entertainment program as an alumna, serving
as a Case Cup judge for two SEVT conferences and as a young alumni panelist.
HRSM Distinguished Service Award:
Barney Allman is a legend in the College of HRSM. Now retired, the former senior instructor
and assistant chair in the Department of Retailing taught more than 10,000 HRSM students
over more than two decades of service.
Allman, who earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from South Carolina, was a
first-generation college graduate. His father worked in a sawmill and his mother in
the cotton fields.
While at the College of HRSM, Allman taught management classes which were required
for all HRSM students, spreading his influence far beyond his department. He was known
for drawing on his personal experiences and work as a business owner (of Skateland
USA in Columbia and Florence) for his lectures.
Allman was recognized for his teaching excellence with the UofSC Advisor of the Year
Award and the College of HRSM Harry E. Varney Teacher of the Year Award. Since retirement,
Allman has supported the college as a donor and as a mentor and friend to countless
alumni, faculty and staff.
He credits his success to “wonderful people who helped me along the way,” mentioning
Dean Harry E. Varney, John Duffy, Pat Moody, Richard Clodfelter and Linda Norris.
He also says he looks back fondly on many students who were a pleasure to teach, adding
that he would list them all if he could.
Allman is currently enjoying retirement with his wife, Helena, who is an assistant
professor at the University of West Florida, and their daughter Margaret, who will
soon turn 4. He also has an adult son, Jason, and baby granddaughter Alex. His brother,
Rocky, is also his business partner.
Distinguished Friend of the College Award:
The Statler Foundation has played a transformational role in the education of College
of HRSM students, providing generous donations over the last three years to support
scholarships and initiatives in the college.
The foundation, based in New York and created in 1934, continues to honor the wishes
of the late hotelier Ellsworth Statler as expressed in his will. The foundation’s
ongoing goal is to support the growth of the hospitality industry. E.M. Statler once
said “The only way to success is by hard work, thrift and service to others.”
The foundation continues Statler’s legacy by providing grants and scholarships to
hospitality students and programs all over the country. Students in the College of
HRSM have been the beneficiaries of the generous fund which has supported travel scholarships
to study in the Galapagos islands as well as general academic scholarships. The Scholarship
of Excellence program rewards the best and brightest students, including HRSM alumni
Parker Coggins (2018) and Florencia Laber (2019).
Grants awarded in 2018 and 2019 from the foundation also funded much needed renovations
and improvements to the historic McCutchen House, the college’s student-run restaurant
and management laboratory. Thanks to the generosity of the foundation, McCutchen House
recently added upgraded kitchen equipment and dramatically improved the dining space
throughout, providing an enhanced experience for students and visitors.
HRSM Distinguished Alumni Award
Thomas (Tom) Miguel DeLozier, 1999
Tom DeLozier is general manager of Quail Hollow Club in Charlotte, host of the 99th
PGA Tournament, the 2021 President’s Cup and the annual Wells Fargo Championship.
He was named Carolinas Club Manager of the Year for 2016-17 and is an exemplary leader
in club management. In addition to his personal career success, DeLozier has created
opportunities for hundreds of South Carolina students to gain valuable career experience
through internship and fellowship opportunities at Quail Hollow each year.
A 1999 graduate of South Carolina, he was among the first to earn a club management
specialization along with his bachelor’s degree in hospitality management. While a
student at South Carolina, he became a student member of the Club Management Association
of America, a decision he says helped shape his career, connecting him with mentors
who remain relevant today.
By the time he graduated, DeLozier had landed a job as a regional manager for Marriott
in Atlanta, overseeing a team of more than 20 employees, at the age of 21. The following
year, he accepted the position of assistant general manager at Charlotte Country Club.
In 2008, he moved on to Quail Hollow as general manager.
DeLozier had been at Quail Hollow for just two years when he helped orchestrate the
biggest moment in the club’s history to that point: being awarded the 2017 PGA Championship.
He then led the seven-year effort to prepare for the tournament, which drew more than
50,000 people each day. He and his team led the transformation of the club, including
the construction of more than 300 structures, all while hosting the annual Wells Fargo
Championship (a PGA Tour event) and keeping members happy from day to day.
DeLozier also created the Quail Institute, a professional development initiative designed
to provide opportunities for the industry’s future leaders. He is a certified club
manager and certified club executive, as well as a member of the CMAA Honor Society
and a board member for the CMAA Carolinas Chapter. His leadership in golf club management
and hospitality has made a positive impact on the industry, the Carolina’s and UofSC.
HRSM Distinguished Young Alumni Award
Brandon Wade Ruth, 2011
Brandon Ruth graduated summa cum laude from UofSC in 2011 with a bachelor of science
in sport and entertainment management and is now director of operations for the Atlanta
Falcons NFL team.
While a student, Ruth interned with the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream, Center Stage Theater
and with the Falcons. After completing his internship with the Falcons, Ruth was offered
a full-time position with the Dream as the manager of game operations. He was responsible
for producing the live in-game experience, managing all game day talent, acting as
the team’s liaison with State Farm Arena and coordinating the team’s schedule directly
with the WNBA.
After a year with the Dream, he accepted an opportunity to return to the Falcons on
a full-time basis as event manager. Ruth oversaw the execution of areas and events
such as Atlanta Falcons Training Camp, Back to Football 5K Race, Atlanta Falcons Draft
Party, Grill with the Falcons, Falcons Landing on game days and any other Falcon-related
event. In 2016, he shifted from events to the football operations side of the franchise
as he accepted a position as the Falcons’ logistics manager. Within that role, Ruth
managed all aspects of team travel and home game operations, including team hotel
booking, plane charter contracts, buses, police escorts and trucking for road games.
After three seasons working as the logistics manager, Brandon was promoted to director
of operations with the Falcons in April 2019.
In addition to overseeing the team travel operation, Ruth now manages the Atlanta
Falcons Training Facility in Flowery Branch, Ga. He oversees the building maintenance,
grounds maintenance and shipping/receiving staff for the facility. He is also in charge
of the yearly postseason team facility renovations and is the main coordinator for
all operations related to Falcons Training Camp held each year at the facility.
In November 2018, Ruth was featured in the Courtyard: Unstoppable Facebook series
sponsored by Marriott and the NFL. The series took a behind-the-scenes look at Ruth’s
job for each road game and how vital he is to the team’s success. The episode garnered
over 1.1 million views on Facebook. Ruth and his wife, Krista, currently live in Buford,
Ga., with their son, Sebastian, and their soon-to-be-born daughter, Margot (due in
HRSM Distinguished Service Award:
Glenna Aileen Gillentine
Glenna Gillentine has earned recognition for her exceptional service to the College
of HRSM, UofSC and the Columbia community, going above and beyond the duties assigned
to her as internship director for the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management.
Gillentine is widely known to students, faculty and staff as a friendly face willing
to help with many activities and events, or just to offer directions or help as needed.
She volunteers countless hours each year for student welcome and practical exam events,
student mentorship, organizing experiential learning opportunities and helping to
facilitate career fairs.
Gillentine’s career has taken her many places, including Japan, Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana,
Arizona, Mississippi, Florida and now South Carolina. She has been a teacher and a
travel agent, worked in the cruise industry, served as the defensive secretary for
the University of Miami football team, and was an advisor at UofSC before moving into
her current role. She also serves as advisor for the UofSC chapter of the National
Society of Minorities in Hospitality. In that role, she takes students to a national
conference each year and helps guide them in community service projects, as well as
welcoming the students to her home for meetings.
Gillentine earned her undergraduate degree from Oklahoma State University and her
master’s degree from Texas Tech University. She and her husband, Andy Gillentine (an
HRSM faculty member), have three children and seven grandchildren.
Gillentine says her dream job would probably be to, “Stand in the lobby of the Coliseum
and help those who look lost find who and what they are looking for.”
Distinguished Friend of the College Award
JDA Software is recognized as a distinguished and significant partner to the College
of HRSM for their lasting impact on curriculum innovation, research and training in
the area of retail management and logistics. JDA has donated more than $7 million
worth of cutting-edge software to South Carolina’s Department of Retailing to provide
hands-on experience and real-world training in inventory planning, logistics and floor
space management to the next generation of retail management professionals. New courses
developed with JDA software are actively enhancing students’ qualifications for in-demand
careers, allowing students to train with supply chain management software that is
used by global companies such as Nike, Starbucks and Volvo. In addition to supporting
student education, JDA collaborates with retailing faculty — igniting new opportunities
for knowledge sharing and innovation.
JDA delivers a more autonomous supply chain for 4,000 of the world’s leading companies
including 75 of the top 100 retailers, 77 of the top 100 consumer goods companies
and 8 of the top 10 global 3PLs. JDA has earned numerous awards including four DivHERsity
Awards for gender diversity in the workplace.
JDA provides the leading AI-driven supply chain management platform. Its end-to-end
solutions span supply chain and retail planning, execution, delivery and workforce
management. Its mission is to empower companies to better predict, make and deliver
exactly what their customers want — when, where and how they want it. JDA powers free-flowing,
connected global commerce — without wasted materials, energy, costs or time — to accelerate
economic growth, sustainability and prosperity.
HRSM Distinguished Alumni Award
Karen O’Neill, 1997
Karen O'Neill is president of the Americas market for Knowcross, a global hotel management
software and technology intelligence provider for the hospitality industry. She is
a 1997 graduate of the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Science from
theSchool of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management. O’Neill is a thought leader and hospitality industry veteran with 20 years of experience
working with top-tier hospitality and restaurant clients. She has climbed the ranks
of the hospitality technology sector, becoming one of the few female VPs, and one
of the youngest, for a $1 billion software company along the way. Originally from
Maryland, O’Neill was one of the only students from her high school to attend UofSC.
She began her career with MICROS Systems (now ORACLE) after securing an interview
at a job fair she attended while she was in college.
She worked for MICROS for 15 years where she held various positions in project management,
major account management and sales and strategies. In her last role, as vice president
of hotel sales and strategies, O’Neill worked closely with leading global hotel chains,
independent properties and management companies on technology strategy, system selection
and deployment. O’Neill helped grow the company from $500 million to more than $1
billion, positioning the business for a strategic sale to technology giant, Oracle.
O’Neill went on to found KnockOut Hospitality Consulting, LLC, in 2013. She then joined
StayNTouch, a property management software system, as the vice president of sales
and marketing where she managed the company’s global sales and marketing initiatives.
In 2017, O’Neill was recruited to serve as president, Americas for Knowcross, where
she leads the company’s growing operations and sales initiatives across North America.
HRSM Distinguished Young Alumni Award
Meghan Azevedo, 2008
Meghan Azevedo is a 2008 alumna of the University of South Carolina and earned her
bachelor’s degree insport and entertainment management. Azevedo went on to earn her MBA from the University of Virgina and has worked hard
to advance her career path that began while she was a student at UofSC working for
Gamecock Athletics. As an undergraduate student, she stood out to her professors for
her determination and keen knack for finance.
She began her post-graduation career in ticketing and corporate sponsorships for the
Baltimore Ravens and went on to work with Under Armour for more than seven years.
Her knowledge and leadership is clearly demonstrated by her rise through the ranks
at Under Armour to the position of senior manager and chief of staff to the CFO. In
2018, Azevedo joined T. Rowe Price global investment management firm as a senior finance
manager. In her current role, she works closely with businesses, providing both financial
and strategic support for short and long-term initiatives.
In addition to her career success, Azevedo has been a strong advocate for the College
of HRSM and has shared her time and talent to help the next generation of students.
From securing donations that support student scholarships, to hosting a delegation
of UofSC visitors at Under Armour Headquarters over fall break, she has helped her
alma matter grow and provide enriching opportunities for students.
HRSM Distinguished Service Award
Michele Braddock-Beagle, 2007
After a successful banking career, Michele Braddock-Beagle returned to college to
complete her degree at the University of South Carolina. With the help of faculty
member Harriet Hurt, Braddock-Beagle made the most of her experience at UofSC and
gained valuable career connections made available to her through the Department of
Sport and Entertainment Management.
After graduating from UofSC with her degree in interdisciplinary studies in 2007,
Braddock-Beagle relocated to Atlanta to work for the Atlanta Falcons as the stadium
event coordinator. She was part of the original WNBA Atlanta staff, which became the
Atlanta Dream, and was a key part of the first WNBA arena sellout event. She has extensive
experience in event management and fundraising, working in various capacities for
three NFL teams, the Masters, the Hootie and Blowfish Monday after the Masters Tournament,
Braddock-Beagle goes above and beyond to dedicate herself and her time to service.
She volunteers extensively with the George Rogers Foundation, planning the annual
Heisman Golf Tournament and Gala weekend event each year as well as additional fundraising
events for the Foundation. She served on the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Board, Georgia
PTA Board and is a member of the Leukemia Lymphoma Society, Team in Training, and
National League of Junior Cotillions.
While event planning is what she is best known for, the University of South Carolina
is Braddock-Beagle’s passion. She has great institutional knowledge about the university,
and she helps students in all majors and walks of life by providing information and
mentorship to help them on their path to personal and professional success. She currently
serves as president of the Atlanta Gamecock Club and Atlanta My Carolina Group, and
loves supporting Gamecock events with her husband, also a Carolina alumnus.
Her nominator had this to say about Braddock-Beagle: “Michele goes above and beyond
to help any future students with information about the College of HRSM and helps current
students with internship and job placements. Her knowledge of and passion for HRSM
is what landed me in the program I am in today.”
Distinguished Friend of the College AwardDarlington Raceway
Darlington Raceway is a pillar of sport, entertainment and tourism in South Carolina
and has become ingrained into the degree programs and learning experiences of hundreds
of University of South Carolina students.
Established in 1950, Darlington has become famously known as the "Track Too Tough
to Tame" and contributes more than $64 million in annual economic impact to the state
of South Carolina. With 111 different NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race winners in 65
years of racing, legends such as Richard Petty, Cale Yarborough, Dale Earnhardt, David
Pearson and Jeff Gordon have made their marks at Darlington.
The historic and thriving raceway is an invaluable friend to the College of HRSM and
the University of South Carolina — impacting the education and lives of students,
alumni and faculty. Hundreds of students gain career experience each year at Darlington
through unique opportunities to work at signature events like the Bojangles’ 500.
Every semester, the organization opens its doors and makes time for students studying
the business of NASCAR. The custom course was once taught by then Darlington President
Jim Hunter, who would be proud to know that a legacy and relationship he helped build
has prospered and grown since those early NASCAR marketing courses.
The organization’s support is also felt across campus, as it played an instrumental
role in founding the Thomas H. Regan Lecture Series, sponsored by NASCAR, which gives
students and the broader Carolina community the chance to hear from prestigious industry
leaders. Many of these students go on to work in internship and full-time roles with
Darlington, providing a direct pathway from sport management education to career —
all right here in South Carolina.
Sean Celia Potter, ’04, ‘05, Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
Sean Potter is the recipient of the2017 HRSM Distinguished Alumni Award. He graduated from University of South Carolina
with his Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management in 2004 and
his Master of Science in Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management the following
Potter foundedSouthern Valet and Transportation in 2005, and has grown the company into various markets throughout South Carolina,
Georgia and North Carolina with a wide variety of parking and transportation services. Currently, Southern Valet and Transportationhas 132 employees throughout the state and is optimistic of future growth.
In addition to his success as an entrepreneur, Potter has invested his time and passion
as a key member and ambassador for the HRSM Alumni Society. He has served as a board
member since its inauguration in 2006 and also served one term as its chair. He said
being involved in the organization has helped him maintain close ties to his alma
Sean lives in Columbia, S.C., with his wife, Melissa, their twins, Claire and Thomas,
and their dog, Charlie.
Sallie Hook Boggs, Retired Retailing Faculty
Sallie Boggs is the recipient of the 2017 Distinguished Service Award. Her name is
well-known to countless HRSM alumni. For almost two decades prior to her retirement
in 2017, Boggs taught classes in the Department of Retailing's Fashion Merchandising
track, inspiring and guiding student after student to successful careers in the fashion
world and elsewhere. She is a three-time winner of the HRSM Distinguished Teacher
of the Year Award, an award nominated and voted on by students. Boggs is also a three-time
UofSC graduate, earning her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in marketing and her doctorate
in marketing education. She wrote her dissertation on the assessment of store image
in retail fashion institutions.
During her time at HRSM, Boggs helped establish Fashion Board as one of the most active
student organizations on campus, and the group continues to be a recruiting and promotional
boon for the retailing department and the college and university as a whole. With
Boggs as its first advisor, Fashion Board grew from less than 20 members to more than
200 in less than three years.
Boggs has left a legacy of education, mentorship and career success at HRSM and continues
to be most admired, appreciated and respected by her colleagues and former students.
She and her husband live in Columbia. Their daughter, Creighton, is a 2016 UofSC graduate
and currently in law school at the University of Richmond.
Sarah Olivia Haile, ‘13, Sport and Entertainment Management
Sarah Haile is the recipient of the 2017 HRSM Distinguished Young Alumni Award. She is
a 2013 UofSC graduate and earned her B.S. in sport and entertainment management with
distinction and a B.A. in public relations.
Haile is now the Motorsports marketing manager forComcast, where she is responsible for the day-to-day management and strategy of Comcast's
NASCAR partnership, including its entitlement of the NASCAR XFINITY Series and its
presence in the sport as the Official Entertainment Provider of NASCAR.
Before joining Comcast, she spent time working in the agency world at GMR Marketing
on their Comcast account, as well as at Octagon on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series entitlement.
While an HRSM student, Haile spent time interning for the Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation,
Spire Sports and Entertainment and Darlington Raceway.
Haile is a Charleston native and now lives in Philadelphia.
E.L. “Bert” Pooser, Jr
Bert Pooser is the recipient of the2017 Distinguished Friend of the College Award. He has been in the hotel business
for 50 years and has developed, owned and/or operated over 50 hotel properties. IMIC
Hotels, the company he founded in 1981, currently operates 14 hotels in four states
with Hilton, Marriott, Wyndham and Choice franchises.
Pooser has been an incredibly loyal supporter of the University of South Carolina
as an alumnus since earning a marketing degree in 1960. He established the HRSM Pooser
Bicentennial Scholarship in 2001 to assist students in the School of Hotel, Restaurant
and Tourism Management who had a financial need and also have a scholastic commitment
to academic excellence and outstanding achievement. This scholarship has benefitted
more than 40 students and counting.
Pooser served as Chairman of the HRSM Dean’s Council from 1999 to 2002 and served
on the University of South Carolina’s Educational Foundation Board. He developed the
Inn at UofSC Wyndham Garden, which IMIC now manages, as part of a joint venture with
the UofSC Development Foundation in 2005. He was appointed as one of two appointees
by the Lexington County Council to the Midlands Convention Center Authority Board
and additionally was chairman of the Design Committee for the Convention Center.
He was chairman of the Lexington Medical Center Foundation Board for three years and
continues to serve on the board. He’s former chairman and president of the South Carolina
Hospitality Association, and served on the National Hotel Advisory Board, the Wingate
Inns Presidents Advisory Council, and Choice Hotels’ Comfort Inn Advisory Board, Ramada
Inns’ RINA Executive Committee.
IMIC Hotels is continually listed as one of the top hotel management companies in
the United States, as one of the top annual revenue producing hotel companies in the
United States. Pooser has received the following additional honors: Hospitality Association
of South Carolina 2001 Hotelier of the Year; UofSC School of Hotel, Restaurant and
Tourism Management 2002 Hospitality Industry Leader of the Year; UofSC Darla Moore
School of Business 2002 Distinguished Alumnus of the Year; Lexington Medical Center
Foundation Stilwell Award for Achievement in Philanthropy; South Carolina Governor’s
Cup Billfishing Series Distinguished Service Award.
Bert is married with three children, two of whom are also active in the family business.
Myles Boer Solomon ’99, Sport Administration
Myles B. Solomon is the recipient of the2016 Distinguished Alumni Award. A 1999 alumnus of the Department of Sport Administration, Solomon is the principal
at Element Sports Group and the president ofSolomon Sports Management, LLC. He earned his law degree from UofSC in 2003. Based in Atlanta, he is currently a
member of the Georgia Bar and specializes in sports law and contracts, including agent
representation for NCAA Division I athletic directors, football and basketball coaches,
as well as NFL coaches. He has served as an adjunct professor in the SPTE department
and previously worked as an attorney for Bassi, Edlin, Huie & Blum LLP in San Francisco,
an attorney for Coca-Cola in Atlanta, and as a law clerk for the Law Offices of Craig
Kelly in Columbia.
Nirjary Mukesh Desai ’03, Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
Nirjary Desai is the recipient of the 2016 Distinguished Young Alumni Award. Nirjary
is a 2003 alumna of the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management. She is
the founder, owner and principal project manager of KIS (cubed), an exclusive destination
event management and special event planning company. Born in Ndola, Zambia, she grew
up in South Carolina and later moved to London to pursue her MBA in International
Marketing and Management. Her distinctive vision and business acumen have garnered
features on Bravo TV, the Wedding Channel, Harpers Bazaar Bride India, Huffington
Post and Glambitious Magazine. She can be seen making a guest appearance in the film Meet
The Patels. Conde Naste Brides Magazine has voted Nirjary as one of the Top 50 destination
wedding planners in the world.
Thomas M. Jackson, Sr.
Tom Jackson is the recipient of the 2016 Distinguished Service Award. Jackson is a
1958 graduate of UofSC where he studied business and retailing. He began his career
working with Pet Mile Company for eight years in St. Louis. Following that, Jackson
returned to South Carolina where he opened the first Icee franchise in the state and
served as general manager for the next 31 years. In 1998, he bought Palmetto Candy
and Tobacco in the Vista and ran it until retiring in 2010. He has served as president
of the Columbia Sales and Marketing Association, is a member of the Columbia Rotary
Club and is an adamant supporter of the Gamecocks and higher education. He is the
College of HRSM’s longest standing board member and is also an active member of My
Carolina and the Gamecock Club. He is married to B Jackson and together they have
The Ragsdale family is the recipient of the 2016 Distinguished Friend of the College
Award. Proud supporters of UofSC with a family full of Gamecocks, the Ragsdales recently
left an estate gift to benefit the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
and the Office of Student Affairs, where both Charles and Emily serve on the Parents
Advisory Council. Charles is a 1987 alumnus of the college, with a B.A.I.S. degree,
while Emily earned her associate degree in retailing in 1976. One of their daughters,
Schall, graduated in August, 2015, with an HRTM degree from HRSM, while their younger
daughter, Emily, graduated from UofSC in May, 2016, with a minor in HRTM.
Carolee Ettline Moore ’93, Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
Carolee Ettline Moore is the recipient of the 2015 Distinguished Alumni Award. A 1993
alumna of the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management, Moore is the vice
president of sales and marketing for Crestline Hotels & Resorts. She is based in Crestline's Virginia Beach office and currently oversees the sales
efforts for Crestline's portfolio of upscale branded and independent hotel properties
that span 74 locations with nearly 12,000 rooms in 21 states and the District of Columbia.
Moore has more than 20 years of hotel and travel industry experience. Before joining
the corporate Crestline team, she led the group sales team at the Emory Conference
Center Hotel, an independent conference center hotel in Atlanta.
James C. Scott, II ’01, Retailing
James C. Scott, II, is the recipient of the 2015 Distinguished Young Alumni Award.
A 2001 alumnus of the Retailing program, he is the owner and operator of Jamie Scott Fitness in Columbia. Scott owns two exercise venues (including an indoor cycling studio)
with a third location on the UofSC campus set to open in the fall of 2015. A former
defensive back on the UofSC football team, Scott started his fitness career as a football
team trainer at Hammond School and later developed an in-house fitness and wellness
program for the Washington, D.C., office of commercial real estate developer Edens.
Richard Clodfelter, Distinguished Professor Emeritus
Richard Clodfelter is the recipient of the 2015 Distinguished Service Award. Clodfelter
was a professor in the Department of Retailing from 1988 until he retired in 2012.
He taught courses in retail buying, Internet retailing and entrepreneurship. His specific
research interests have included scanner pricing accuracy, e-commerce and retail buying.
Richard received the Distinguished Researcher and Scholar of the Year Award from the
College of HRSM in 2001. The South Carolina Business Education Association (SCBEA)
has honored him as Collegiate Teacher of the Year and Teacher Educator of the Year.
His book on retail buying is in its fifth edition and is currently used in the Department
James T. Pearce, Sr., Distinguished Friend of the College
James T. Pearce, Sr., is the recipient of the 2015 Distinguished Friend of the College
Award. A World War II combat veteran, Pearce and his brothers turned a third-generation
family grocery business into a regional restaurant food supplier that was eventually
bought by Sara Lee Corporation. They also later sold what had been the largest Anheuser-Busch
beer distributorship in the Southeast. A 1942 graduate of UofSC, Pearce is an avid
supporter of higher education and the University. He and his late wife, Kit, created
a $1 million Carolina Scholar endowment several years ago. Pearce honored his late
son, William, a 1972 UofSC graduate, by creating a $1 million endowment for the William
McFall “Mac” Pearce Professorship in the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
earlier this year.
Rasheed Muhammad,’95, Retail Management
Rasheed Muhammad is the 2014 recipient of HRSM's Distinguished Alumni Award. A 1995
alumnus of the Retail Management program, Muhammad is the senior vice president for
SunTrust Bank's Private Wealth Management / Sports and Entertainment Specialty Group.
A singer and songwriter at heart, Rasheed pioneered a new entertainment practice designed
to serve the financial services needs of the Atlanta entertainment industry.
Alex Berberian, ’08, Sport and Entertainment Management
Alex Berberian is the college's 2014 Distinguished Young Alumni Award recipient. A
2008 alumnus of the Sport and Entertainment Management program, Berberian currently
serves as manager of consumer products sales and operations for Feld Entertainment,
Inc., in Ellenton, Fla. Feld is the world's largest producer of live family entertainment
including Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey, Feld Motor Sports, Disney on Ice and
Dr. Patricia G. Moody,College of HRSM Dean Emerita
Patricia "Pat” G. Moody, Ph.D., is the College of HRSM's 2014 recipient of the Distinguished
Service Award. Moody served as dean of the College of HRSM at UofSC for 9 years and
was a professor at UofSC for more than 30 years. During her tenure as dean, the college
made significant progress in growing the student body, attracting high-level research
faculty members, building the college's endowment, establishing the International
Tourism Research Center, the Alfred P. Sloan Center for Tourism Research, initiating
land mark tourism studies and opening program agreements with several Chinese institutions
as well as other international universities.
Dee Hust, Distinguished Friend of the College
Dee Hust is the College of HRSM's 2014 recipient of the Distinguished Friend of the
College Award. Earning Managing Partner of the Year in 2009, 2010 and 2012, Dee has
been managing partner of the Bonefish Grill in Harbison since 2008 and has been with
the company overall for 11 years. The connection made between Bonefish Grill and HRSM
has been a special one for Hust and he looks forward to further collaboration and
partnership in the future.
Scott Reynolds, Distinguished Friend of the College
Scott Reynolds is the College of HRSM's 2014 recipient of the Distinguished Friend
of the College Award. A managing partner locally at the Bonefish Grill on Forest Drive,
Reynolds has been with the company for more than 10 years and has developed a strong
bond with HRSM. Reynolds, who grew up working with a strong hospitality industry background
in Myrtle Beach, is proud of the partnership with the college and feels a personal
point of pride in its continued development and progress over the years.
Haissam Baityeh , ’89, Hospitality Management
Haissam Baityeh is the 2013 recipient of HRSM's Distinguished Alumni Award. Originally
from Lebanon, Baityeh graduated from the UofSC School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism
Management in 1989. He is a past recipient of the Manager of the Year Award presented
by the Club Managers Association of America (CMAA), and currently serves as executive
vice president and COO at Bent Tree Country Club located in Dallas, Texas.
Nate Bredeweg, ’07, Integrated Information Technology
Nate Bredeweg is the college's 2013 Distinguished Young Alumni Award recipient. A
Columbia, S.C., native and 2007 alumnus from Integrated Information Technology, Bredeweg
currently serves as a senior enterprise technical release manager at Lowe's Home Improvement
in Charlotte, N.C. Lowe's is a Fortune 100 company with 1,750 stores serving more
than 14 million weekly customers. Bredeweg is also founder of Renee & Company, Inc.,
a North Carolina-based technology consulting firm.
The Richardson Family
The College of HRSM's 2013 Distinguished Friends of the College Award is presented
to the James C. Richardson family. Based in Hickory, N.C., the Richardson family maintains
strong ties to the University of South Carolina. Recently, the family completed a
significant family endowment in support of the SmartState Center of Economic Excellence
in Tourism and Economic Development. Led by UofSC international tourism expert Dr.
Simon Hudson, this center will be the go-to resource for tourism research in the State
of South Carolina. The Centers of Excellence were established in 2002 by the South
Carolina General Assembly to provide jobs and new research throughout the state.
Dr. Donald Earl Stowe ’72, Higher Education Policy and Leadership
Donald "Don” Earl Stowe, Ph.D., is the College of HRSM's 2013 Distinguished Service
Award recipient. Stowe spent nearly 31 years at the College of HRSM as an administrator,
advisor and faculty member. He helped launch the University's bachelor's degree for
the Interdisciplinary Studies program (B.A.I.S.), home to more than 5,500 UofSC graduates.
Dr. Stowe is past president of the Association for Integrative Studies (AIS), a national
organization that promotes interdisciplinary curricula and degree programs similar
to UofSC's B.A.I.S. degree. Today Dr. Stowe serves as an education associate and consultant
for the South Carolina Department of Education Division of School Effectiveness.
Vickie Cox Neighbour, ’01
Vickie Cox Neighbor is a 2001 graduate from the College of Hospitality, Retail and
Sport Management's Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (B.A.I.S.) program.
She currently serves on the board of directors for Cox Industries, Inc., an Orangeburg,
S.C.-based manufacturer and distributor of outdoor wood products. Cox retired in 2008
after 16 years with Cox Industries, Inc., most recently as its vice president of international
business development. She is a 2001 graduate of Leadership Columbia, S.C., holds an
MBA from Kennesaw State University, and has completed the Cambridge Institute for
Global Learning in Amman, Jordan. She is active with the Richland County Foster Care
Review Board, among other local philanthropic causes.
Moe Baddourah, ’86, ’99
Moe Baddourah holds a bachelor's and master's degree from the College of Hospitality,
Retail and Sport Management's School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management.
A Columbia, S.C., native, Baddourah is the owner of Moe's Italian Grapevine Restaurant
located on Rosewood Drive in downtown Columbia. In July 2012, he was elected to Columbia's
City Council representing the District 3 Rosewood community. Baddourah's extensive
community involvements include serving as a volunteer firefighter and as chairman
of the Rosewood Crawfish Festival.
Matt Hudson, ’00
Matt Hudson is a 2000 alumnus from the College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management's
program in Integrated Information Technology. Hudson currently serves as owner of
Mindlash, a leading website development firm in Columbia, S.C., chief creative director
at the public relations firm CarterTodd and Associates, Inc., co-founder of the tech
company Palmetto Computer Labs; head graphic designer for Columbia Home & Garden magazine,
and creative director for the Internet startup company Voterheads. For his professional
achievements and philanthropic involvements—led by his support of the South Carolina
School for the Deaf and the Blind and its annual "Wine, Dine and Design” fundraiser—Hudson
was named to The State newspaper's coveted "20 Under 40” list in 2011.
Salina Vieira Neuhaus, ’00
Salina Vieira Neuhaus is a 2000 graduate from the College of Hospitality, Retail and
Sport Management's Department of Retailing. She serves as vice president and director
of sales and account services for Market Group Connect (MGC), a New Jersey-based division
of Randa Accessories. Randa is a privately held, global leader in lifestyle accessories.
The company has 20 offices in 12 countries, and projected 2012 sales of more than
$625 million. Neuhaus oversees various key business aspects for MGC, including business
growth strategies, gross profit, and new business planning. Under her guidance and
strategic planning, Randa has become the world's largest manufacturer of men's lifestyle
Joe P. Sobieralski, ’01
Joe P. Sobieralski is a 2001 alumnus from the College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport
Management's Department of Sport and Entertainment Management. He currently serves
as vice chancellor for business and finance and chief financial officer for the University
of South Carolina Aiken. In this position, he oversees a $55 million institutional
budget and a number of the university's strategic business functions, including human
resources, purchasing and contracted services. Prior to being named vice chancellor
at UofSC Aiken, Sobieralski served as director of business and finance for auxiliary
enterprises and university life at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. From 1999
to 2003 he served as the assistant to the associate athletics director for business
with the UofSC Athletics Department. Sobieralski also holds a master's degree and
bachelor's in accounting from UofSC's Darla Moore School of Business.
Elizabeth Smith, ’95
Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (B.A.I.S.) | First-Year English Program
Coordinator | University of South Carolina
Kristie Santora Rasheed, ’02
Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management | Regional Director
of Reservations and Revenue Optimization | Wild Dunes Resort, Destination Hotels and
Ken Godwin, ’02
Bachelor of Science in Technology Support and Training Management | Vice President
and Business Systems Consultant Manager | Wells Fargo
AnnaBelle LaRoque, ’05
Bachelor of Science in Retailing | Designer and Owner | LaRoque
Kristy McPherson, ’03
Bachelor of Science in Sport and Entertainment Management | Professional Golfer |
LPGA Tour | 2011 Outstanding Service Award Winner
Cliff Arthur, ’86
Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management | Alumni Society Chair
| Bonefish Grill Joint Venture Partner
Katherine Brown, ’99
Bachelor of Science in Sport and Entertainment Management | Alumni Society Chair-Elect
| UofSC Athletics Associate Director of Compliance
Molly Britt, ’94
Molly Britt graduated from the University of South Carolina in 1994 with a degree
in Hotel, Retail and Tourism Administration. In 2004, Britt launched MollyAnna, a
maternity clothing line inspired by her own pregnancy with her daughter, Anna. Since
then, the clothing line has gained popularity with Hollywood’s celebrities and has
been featured in more than 30 publications. Britt also spent time working in Los Angeles
in television production and finance. She currently resides in Atlanta, Ga.
Mike DeMaine, ’95
Mike DeMaine received his Bachelor of Science in Sport Administration from the University
of South Carolina in 1995. He is the general manager of the Greenville Drive and has
also worked with the Frisco RoughRiders Baseball Club, the Charlotte Checkers and
the West Coast Hockey League. DeMaine currently resides in Greenville, S.C., with
his wife, Jamie, and their three children—Grace, Sophie and Lacie.
Frankie Marion, ’01
Frankie Marion graduated from the University of South Carolina in 2001 with a degree
in retailing. He is currently self-employed and has worked with several outdoor and
fishing companies. In 2002, he launched Pescador Brand Clothing, a company that produces
fishing gear. He is also a member of the College Alumni Society Board.
Stacey Tarpley, ’98
Stacey Tarpley received her Bachelor of Science in Information Management from the
University of South Carolina in 1998. She now works as an enterprise project manager
for Wachovia Corporation. She currently resides in Charlotte, N.C., with her husband,
Keenan, and children, Kevin and Kelly.
Gary Thomas Baker, ’86
Gary Thomas Baker received his Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (B.A.I.S.)
in 1986. Gary has a 30-year career in retailing and is currently employed by Target
Corporation as the store team leader at the new Lexington, S.C., store. Prior to Target,
he spent 25 years in store management with the Kroger Company. Gary credits professor
Colonel John Lenti for inspiring and equipping him with the tools needed to do “whatever
it took” to be a successful businessman.
"I totally enjoy working with all the cool people I've had a chance to meet and influence
in [Target] retail. And I'm driven by the challenges and opportunities I get to tackle
here.” These new people include Target employees all over the country as Gary is sent
periodically to various destinations in the United States to help open new stores.
Gary grew up in Columbia and currently resides in Lexington, S.C., with his wife,
Lori (B.A.I.S., 1985), and their children, Andrew, Hannah and Joe.
Elizabeth "Libby” Shelton Floyd, ’86
Elizabeth Shelton Floyd received her Bachelor of Science in Retailing with an emphasis
in fashion merchandising from the University of South Carolina in 1986. She is the
national television host for ShopNBC. The show is seen by more than 65 million people
Libby is a former Miss Greenville, Miss Teen South Carolina All-American, and has
worked as a professional model in New York. Her previous work experiences include
the management training program at Bullock's Department Store in Los Angeles, television
host for a basketball show on The Sports Channel / Los Angeles, lead singer in her
own band, host of her own radio show in Pomona, Calif., talent agent for Wilhemina
in Beverly Hills, Calif., published author of two books, guest host of The Shopping
Channel in Canada, and national TV host of Shop at Home.
"My retail classes were very informative with Mrs. Kitty Strickland,” said Libby.
She credits her diverse successes in her career to the diversity that comes with studying
retail management and the flexibility to expand the degree by taking electives in
Libby grew up in Greenville, S.C., and is married to Tony Cane-Honeysett. They currently
reside in Minneapolis, Minn.
Kevin M. Ayres, ’97
Kevin M. Ayres received his Bachelor of Hotel Administration in 1987 from the University
of Nevada, Las Vegas, and his Master of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management from
the University of South Carolina in 1997. He is the owner / president of State Street
Snacks located in Lexington, S.C. His previous employment experiences include general
manager with Sodexho (University of South Carolina) and multi-unit manager with Marriott.
He currently serves as an allied board member of the National Association of Collegiate
Concessionaires, is a member of the National Association of Concessionaires and has
spent 11 seasons as a youth league coach in soccer, baseball and basketball. He received
the Marriott Pinnacle Achievement Award in 1991.
Kevin is an adjunct professor in the School of HRTM and has published refereed journal
articles in College and University Foodservice as well as presented at a student research
conference on Hospitality and Tourism at the University of Houston.
He and his wife, Jill, have two children, Brendan and Bonnie, and reside in Columbia,
Sam J. Piccione III,
Sam J. Piccione received his Bachelor of Science in Sport and Entertainment Management
in 1998 from the University of South Carolina.. He is the director of corporate sales
for AEG, the largest sports and entertainment provider in the world, and is responsible
for developing corporate partnerships. His previous work experiences include director
of sports sales for NBC Sports Station Group and director of business development
for Telemundo Station Group and NBC Station Group. Sam also spent seven years with
the Anaheim Angels Baseball Club and Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in sales and promotions.
He was a part of the 2002 Angels World Series Team. Many of his family members are
Gamecock alumni as well, including his sister Gianna, who is a sport and entertainment
alumna, currently working for the Arizona Football Club in sales and servicing.
"[My time at the University] was truly the best four years ever and sport and entertainment
management, led by Dr. Guy Lewis and Dr. Tom Regan, gave me the direction to succeed
in the sports business world from day one!”
Sam currently resides in Manhattan Beach, Calif., and works in Los Angeles.
Ernest M. Pringle, ’92
Ernest M. Pringle received his Bachelor of Science in Office Information Systems (now
Technology Support and Training Management) in 1992 and Master of Public Administration
in 2004. He is employed by the University of South Carolina as the assistant dean
for information technology at the UofSC School of Law. Previously, Ernest was the
associate director of Student Development and University Housing, where he provided
strategic leadership and direction for all information technology services, including
the planning, delivery and management of academic and administrative network and telecommunication
support services for University Housing at UofSC. His previous employment experiences
include network operator with Policy Management Systems Corporation, and network administration
with the College of Applied Professional Sciences at UofSC.
Ernest is president of the UofSC Black Faculty and Staff Association, serves as an
assistant T-ball coach with Richland County Recreation Commission, and was nominated
by UofSC president Andrew Sorensen to participate in the United Way 2005 Blueprint
for Leadership. He grew up in Charleston, S.C., but currently resides in Columbia,
with his wife Tamila (Retailing,1990) and their two children, Kelsey Brianna and Trey
Elizabeth "Beth” Ann Haltiwanger Hinshaw, ’84
Elizabeth Haltiwanger Hinshaw received her Bachelor of Science in Office Administration
(now Technology Support and Training Management) in 1984. Elizabeth is a sales executive
with Strategic Products and Services (SPS). SPS is a premier business partner for
Avaya Telecommunications. Beth's previous work experiences include IBM, where she
achieved golden circle status, (top 5% in the world), Black Box Network Services where
she achieved millionaire's status (125% retainment), and Avaya / Lucent Technologies
/ AT&T where Beth led the regional team to 149% attainment. Beth credits her mentor,
Dr. Pat Moody, for teaching her to set goals and go for them. Moody also gave Beth
practical advice like, "don't ever carry a pocketbook and a briefcase at the same
Beth is a member of SCTMA, Church Council at Christus Victor Lutheran Church and is
a youth leader with Mt. Horab Lutheran Church – catechism.
She is a Columbia native, but now resides in Chapin, S.C., with her husband Frank
and their children, Trenton Addison and Elizabeth Ashleigh.
Deborah Chandler is the senior assistant to the CEO of IMI, a real estate marketing
and sales company out of Greenville, S.C. When the CEO of IMI, Mike Collins, became
the chairman of the Dean's Partnership Board, Deborah joined him at the meetings and
quickly became a valuable asset to the board and College. Deborah's corporate experience
in marketing and event management have been instrumental in the development of HRSM's
Garnet Jacket Classic Golf Tournament and Classic Party and Ultimate Auction. Through
Deborah's direction and vision, the Garnet Jacket Classic has become the premiere
golf tournament in the Midlands in just a few years and has raised thousands of dollars
for scholarships for HRSM students.
Deborah has not only contributed her time and talents to the tournament, but she also
recruited a very special student who is now a very special alumnus. Deborah's son,
Jonathan Murray, is a 2006 sport and entertainment management graduate already finding
success in the music promotion industry.
The College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management appreciates the time and support
of this loyal supporter and is pleased to recognize her with our highest honor, "Honored
Friend of the College.”
Jim B. Owens, Jr.
Jim Owens has served on the Department of Retailing's National Partnership Retail
Advisory Board for several years and has provided astute leadership and been an excellent
supporter of the College and the Department.
Jim joined The Biltmore Company as vice president of retail operations and winery
guest services in September of 2001.
Mr. Owens' business background is quite extensive with more than 30 years of senior
management experience. Between 1974-84, Mr. Owens worked as vice president of revenue
at Sea World of Florida, revenue vice president at Sea World of California, and vice
president-general manager of Sea World's Florida Festival. In 1985, he was appointed
to the position of assistant to the chairman of Harcourt, Brace and Jovanovich, Sea
World's parent company, focusing on acquisitions and expansion. His tenure with Sea
World was followed by 13 years as president and CEO of SRI Enterprises, an apparel
company specializing in theme park / tourism fashions, and managing his own tourism-consulting
firm with clients that included major theme parks, international resorts, and regional
attractions. From 1998 to 2001, he served as senior consultant to EnterCitement, LLC,
a leisure destination development and management company.
The College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management appreciates the time and support
of this loyal board member and is pleased to recognize him with our highest honor,
"Honored Friend of the College.”
Clifton Steven Arthur, ’86
Cliff Arthur received his Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration
(now HRTM) in 1986. In the last 20 years, he has risen through the ranks of restaurant
management to be promoted in 2002 to joint venture partner of Bonefish Grill for North
and South Carolina.
Cliff has developed more locations for Bonefish Grill, an upscale restaurant, than
any other joint venture partner since the company's inception. Prior to his work with
Bonefish Grill, Cliff's achievements included becoming general manager of a Steak
and Ale Restaurant at age 22. He went on to win their general manager of the year
award for three straight years, beginning in 1989.
Within a year after moving to the Outback Steakhouse organization in 1992, he became
managing partner in their Charleston location. He later became managing partner in
Wilmington, N.C., a position he held for four years.
Since coming to Bonefish, he has become responsible for 10 locations, with ownership
in 4 others in North and South Carolina. Cliff was on the board of directors for the
Greater Charleston Restaurant Association in 1994-95, and is now on the Board of Directors
of the newly-organized HRSM Alumni Society.
He has been married, since 1986, to the former Rosemary Gatlin, a 1985 Bachelor of
Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies graduate. They have two daughters, Mary Ashley,
nearly 10, and Megan Ann, six and a half.
Ron Caplan is the 2006 recipient of the College of HRSM's Friend of the College Award.
Ron Caplan is the president of the PMC Property Group and is known back in Philly
as not only one of the largest property owners in town, but also as a quiet, reserved
man who pays attention to the details and likes to keep a low-profile. In 1978 Caplan
bought several single-family homes which he was able to expand into a collection of
multi-unit housing ventures located throughout Philadelphia. In 1981 Caplan founded
PMC Property Group when the number and size of his holdings had grown extensive enough
to require the services of a management company. Caplan also assembled a general-contracting
division within PMC Property Group, making the company a full-service developer focused
on adaptive-reuse projects spanning the East Coast.
Pamela Suber Gaither, ’96
Pamela Suber Gaither earned her Bachelor of Science in Administrative Information
Management (now known as Technology Support and Training Management) in 1996 and completed
her Master of Business Education at Winthrop University in 1998. She is involved in
the youth ministry at Providence Road Church of Christ, where she assists with the
infants' bible classes and children's worship classes.
Professionally, Pamela taught business education as a middle school teacher in the
Charlotte Mecklenburg school system for three years prior to joining Bank of America.
She is currently vice president of supply chain management, enterprise access / desktop
services and leasing with Bank of America in Charlotte. As the sourcing manager in
the supply chain management division at the bank, she manages a group of associates
who source software and negotiate with suppliers in support of global technology services
and fulfillment within the company. Despite recently assuming additional responsibilities
in the area of college recruitment, Pamela makes time to be actively involved in volunteer
work through her employer.
A native of Clinton, S.C., she now lives in Charlotte, N.C., with her husband Reginald
and son Clayton, nearly 15 months old.
Matt Homan, ’99
Matt Homan received his Bachelor of Science in Sport Administration (now Sport and
Entertainment Management) in 1999. A native of Pennsylvania, he lives in Des Moines,
Iowa, where he is employed by Global Spectrum as general manager of the Iowa Events
Active in Sport Club while at Carolina, Matt worked in several positions related to
events and event facilities, including a stint as box office ticket seller at the
Carolina Coliseum and Wachovia Complex (Philadelphia), group sales rep and later assistant
manager of group sales at the Wachovia Complex, event manager at the Sovereign Bank
Arena in Trenton, N.J., and assistant general manager of the University of South Carolina's
Colonial Center where he often gave tours of specific operational areas.
While in Columbia, he maintained ties to his alma mater by being a guest speaker in
various sport and entertainment classes on facilities management, sport and entertainment
event management, public assembly facilities, and facilities programs and sales.
Frank Roach, a sport and entertainment management faculty member with expertise in
the event management field, noted that he did not "know of another major complex in
the country with a GM as young as Matt.”
A singular accomplishment has been Matt's inclusion on Billboard's "30 Under 30” list
in the company of such stars as Kanye West and Lindsay Lohan. This recognition honors
not only Matt but the Department of Sport and Entertainment Management, the College
of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management, and the University of South Carolina.
He and his wife, the former Paige Raines and a 1998 SPTE alumna, are the parents of
one-and-a-half-year old Caroline Walker Homan.
James D. Norman Jr., ’88
James D. Norman, Jr., earned his Bachelor of Science in Retailing in 1988. He is from
Lexington, S.C., where he and his wife, the former Karen Johnson, a 1990 graduate
in retailing, are raising their three children, Hannah, 8, Trey 6, and Harper Grace,
2. Since his graduation, James has been active in sales, formerly with R.L. Bryan,
then Diagnostic Health Care, and now with Synthes, USA, a company based in Paoli,
Penn. In his present position as sales consultant, James has represented spinal implants
for orthopedic and neuro spine surgeons for the past 12 years.
During his career, James has been honored for being in the top 5 of all sales consultants
in the company, which has more than 350 consultants in the U.S. alone. He has also
served as the Southeast trainer for consultants.
A quota achiever for all 12 years with Synthes, USA, James was elected sales senator
for the Southeast for 6 years running.
Clarke Thompson, ’86
Clarke Thompson received his Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (B.A.I.S.)
in 1986. He grew up in Rock Hill, S.C., and currently lives in Columbia, but his career
path has allowed him to travel the world.
Clarke began his career as a data management research analyst for the S.C. Budget
and Control Board for three years. He then became assistant manager, labor research
information, for the S.C. Department of Commerce, assuming the additional title of
assistant manager for international trade, from 1991-1997. Also a graduate of the
Economic Development Institute (EDI) at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, Clarke
received his International Trade Specialist certificate at the American Graduate (Thunderbird)
School of International Management in Glendale, Ariz.
As director of export development and foreign relations at the S.C. Department of
Commerce, Clarke and his staff assist companies in identifying new overseas markets
and customers. Clarke has traveled extensively on behalf of the South Carolina government,
as well as to small- and medium-sized businesses, leading trade show excursions and
trade missions around the world.
Over the years, Clarke has held numerous memberships on South Carolina government
and industry boards dealing with international and world trade, exports, international
cooperation and agreements, economic development, global strategies, and regional
and Southern development initiatives. In 2005, he served as general chairman of the
32nd Annual South Carolina International Trade Conference. He has garnered numerous
awards and honors for his efforts, including the distinguished service award, S.C.
Department of Commerce in 2005. The department's export program has been honored at
the national level with the State Export Trade Program Gold Award by the Council for
Urban Economic Development (2000), and the U.S. Department of Commerce's President's
E-Award for Export Service. When not busy identifying international markets, Clarke
supports the community by participating in activities such as Habitat for Humanity,
Families Helping Families, and the MDA Lockup.
Married to Neyle Scoggin Thompson, the couple have two children, Emily, 14, and Stuart,
The Pearce Family
The Pearce Family is the recipient of HRSM's Friends of the College Award.
The Pearces established The Marnie Walker Pearce Professional Development Fund. Created
by Marnie’s two daughters, Anne Pearce Baroody and Jean Pearce Rentz, the fund supports
the development and delivery of intensive professional development seminars and practical
field experiences for students who will soon be graduating and entering the working
The hope of the Pearce family is that this fund and the subsequent course that evolved
from the endowment will provide prospective graduates with the professional skills
needed to sharpen their professional images, compete for the best jobs, and excel in on-the-job performance.
Renee Wilder, ’84
Renee Wilder received her Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (B.A.I.S.)
in 1984. Renee lives in Chapin, S.C., with her husband, Eddie — who is also an award
recipient — and their three children, Robert, 17, Bradham, 14, and McCauley, 12. While
at the University of South Carolina, she was a member of Zeta Tau Alpha sorority.
Renee currently serves as a State Farm Insurance agent in Chapin. Prior to her current
position, she was a manager at State Farm as well as an agency field consultant. She
has received many awards throughout her career for excellence in her field, including
the Legion of Honor Award, Ambassador Agent, Bronze Tablet, and Silver Scroll Agent.
Eddie Wilder, ’84
Eddie Wilder received his Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (B.A.I.S.)
with an emphasis in Business Management in 1984. While at the University of South
Carolina, he was a member of Sigma Nu fraternity and a student government senator.
Eddie serves as the president and founder of ERA Wilder Realty. He is a member of
the S.C. Association of Realtors and the Greater Columbia Board of Realtors. He has
received numerous awards in his field, including the Circle of Excellence Award for
the Greater Columbia Association of Realtors and the #1 Sea Island Broker Council.
Eddie is also a member of the ERA Leaders Circle. Additionally, ERA Wilder Realty
has been ranked in the 3 three of Real Estate Companies of South Carolina Midlands
and in the top 15 of ERA International. Eddie is a member of the Lions Club and Rotary
Club, and holds officer positions in the Jaycees, Williamsburg County Development
Board, MDA, and the Administrative Board of Chapin United Methodist Church. He is
also the founder of the Dutch Fork Wild Turkey Federation.
Scott Vigil, ’86
Scott Vigil received his Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
in 1986. He currently serves as partner and owner for Pipeline Equipment Resources
Company and sales director for Mulcare Pipeline Solutions, Inc., in Boonton, N.J.
Prior to his current position, Scott was an assistant and general manager for Steak
and Ale Restaurant Corporation, and a sales director for At-Your-Service Software,
a restaurant software development company. Scott is active in his church where he
is a fifth grade Sunday school teacher, men’s ministry committee member, and co-leader
for a Bible study. He is also involved in his local country club, is chairman of the
volleyball league, and is a social committee member of the Vahalla Civic Association.
Throughout the year he coaches lacrosse, roller hockey, and baseball. Scott lives
with his wife, Vickie, and their children, Taylor, 15, and Alec, 10, in Montville,
Kevin Carroll, ’86
Kevin Carroll received his Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
in 1986. During his time at the University of South Carolina, he worked alongside
another award recipient, Chef John Peduzzi, at culinary events. Kevin currently serves
as the regional vice president of operations for Chili’s Grill and Bar, where he worked
his way through the organization, starting in 1990 as an assistant manager. During
his time with Chili’s, Kevin has led the annual national fundraising event that benefits
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Over the past two years, the event has raised
more than $5 million to help find cures for children with cancer. Prior to working
with Chili’s, Kevin was general manager for the Steak and Ale Restaurant Corporation,
and general manager for Applebee’s. He lives in Frisco, Texas, with his wife, Marsha,
and their three children, Brantley, 14, Walker, 11, and Meredyth, 9.
Shawn Nelson, ’93
Shawn Nelson received his Bachelor of Science in Retailing in 1993. While at the University
of South Carolina, he was a writer for The Gamecock, and a member of student government
and the international community (NADA). He was chairperson of the concert committee
for The Carolina Program Union and a volunteer orientation leader for the college.
He is currently a freelance writer covering retail in Washington, D.C. Prior to his
current position, Shawn was assistant editor for The National Retail Federation’s
STORES magazine, writer and managing editor of the Public Broadcasting Report, features
writer of fashion and style for The Florence Morning News, and regional merchandise
coordinator for Colours by Alexander Julian. Shawn was awarded the 1998 Atrium Award
for outstanding work in fashion journalism and received an award for best lifestyle
section from the S.C. Press Association in 1998. He participated in Hands on D.C.,
volunteers for many grassroots political organizations, and is a member of DC for
MaryRuth Hughey, ’94
MaryRuth Hughey received her Bachelor of Science in Sport and Entertainment Management
in 1994. While at the University of South Carolina, she was president of the Sport
Administration Club. She has participated in the Stanford Graduate School of Business
Executive Education and the NFL Program for Managers. MaryRuth currently serves as
the director of ticketing for the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium and the
New England Revolution. Prior to her current position, MaryRuth was a box office manager
and director of ticketing for the Tampa Bay Lightning. MaryRuth lives with her husband,
Mark Briggs, in Foxboro, Mass. She also has two step children, Shiarn, 21, and Aaron,
Aaron Seekford, ’95
Aaron Seekford received his Bachelor of Science in Office Administration, now known
as Technology Support and Training Management, in 1995. While at the University of
South Carolina, Aaron was awarded the Jesse Pratt Scholarship and was on the dean’s
list. He is currently a realtor and owner of three realty companies, including Casa
Realty in Virginia, and is in the top five percent of realtors in his area. He is
also the primary owner of Locals Bar in Columbia’s Five Points. He is a member of
the Carolina Alumni Association, Virginia Association of Realtors, and the Virginia
Chamber of Commerce, and is a Certified Real Estate Specialist. He contributes to
the March of Dimes, Red Cross, and Children with Cancer. He lives in Falls Church,
Va., and plans to marry his fiancee, Ayda Argueta, in Spring 2006.
Honored Friend of the College, Chef John Peduzzi, holds both respect and admiration
from faculty, staff and students. Peduzzi served as an instructor and chef for the
College in the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management from 1978 until
1995. Prior to his time with the College, Peduzzi served in the Italian Army. A native
of Italy, he was drafted to serve in World War II and was stationed at a POW Camp
in Italy as a translator because he spoke French, English and Italian. When the Allies
invaded Sicily and swept through Italy, Peduzzi went AWOL and joined the British Army,
where they put him in charge of a kitchen after learning he was a chef. Once the war
ended, Peduzzi wanted to return to the U.S. where his family spent time when he was
a child. He obtained a job as a chef and later a manager at the Piedmont Club in Spartanburg
where he worked for 29 years until retirement in 1999. Peduzzi currently lives in
Lexington, S.C. He was a founding member of the local chapter of the American Culinary
Association. He also served in many capacities with the American Culinary Federation
(ACF) Midlands Chapter and has been honored as Chef of the Year by the organization.
He was recently inducted into the American Academy of Chefs, the most prestigious
honor for ACF chefs.
Eric Cuthbertson, ’93
Eric Cuthbertson, has been honored as the Outstanding Alumni Award recipient for the
Department of Sport and Entertainment Management in the College of HRSM. Cuthbertson
is a 1993 graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Sport Administration. In addition
to working for Global Spectrum as the assistant general manager of the Sovereign Bank
Arena, Cuthbertson was also the assistant director of North American Tours for Feld
Entertainment, the producers of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus and Disney
On Ice from 1998-2003. Cuthbertson is a member of the International Association of
Assembly Managers and he also graduated from the IAAM/ Oglebay School of Facility
Management in 2001. Eric currently resides in Morrisville, Pa.
Zachary Dryman, ’00
Zachary Dryman, senior technical specialist for the Challenger Center for Space Science
Education, has been honored as the Outstanding Alumni Award recipient for the Department
of Technology Support and Training Management in the College of Hospitality, Retail
and Sport Management. Dryman is a 2000 graduate of with a Bachelor of Science in Information
Management. In addition to his experience with the Challenger Center, Dryman was also
the distance learning coordinator for The Brown Mackie College from June 2001-July
2003. Zachary currently resides in Lee's Summit, Mo.
Cindy Spain-Green, ’92
Cindy Spain-Green, leasing manager for Americas Mart in Atlanta, has been honored
as the Outstanding Alumni Award recipient for the Department of Retailing in the College
of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management. Spain-Green is a 1992 graduate of the
University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Science in Retailing. She was previously
the senior buyer relations manager for Americas Mart. She is responsible for 300,000
square feet of exhibit space with an annual revenue of approximately $12 million.
Spain-Green is a member of the National Association of Realtors, the Georgia Association
of Realtors, and the DeKalb Board of Realtors. She and her husband, Antonio, have
one son and currently reside in Lawrenceville, Ga.
LeRoy DesChamps, ’81
LeRoy DesChamps, regional human resource manager for CVS Pharmacy, has been honored
as the Outstanding Alumni Award recipient for the Department of Interdisciplinary
Studies in the College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management. DesChamps is a
1981 graduate of the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary
Studies. He has been the regional human resource manager since 1983. He was named
Regional Trainer of the Year in 1990 and received the Outstanding Performance Award
in 2002. DesChamps is the vice president of the Gentleman's Club of Columbia and the
founder of the Louie A. DesChamps Scholarship Fund. He and his wife, Cynthia, currently
reside in Blythewood, S.C.
Front row from left: Jerry Odom, UofSC Provost and Friend of the College; Byron Yahnis,
Outstanding Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies Alumni; Bridgette Smith,
Outstanding Retailing Alumni; Bobby Williams, Jr., of Lizard's Thicket and Friend
of the College
Back row from the left: Craig Curtis, Outstanding Sport and Entertainment Management
Alumni; Taj Troy, Outstanding Administrative Information Management Alumni; Rex Galloway,
Outstanding Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management Alumni
Dawn Caldwell, ’96 Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Amy Duffy, ’87 Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration
Harold Green, ’90 Retailing
Mike Harrison, ’91 Sport and Entertainment Management
Jack Mills Friend of the College
William B. Dukes, ’64 Friend of the College
Randolph P. Romaine, ’95 Master of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
Andre Bauer, ’91 Retailing
Marvin Chernoff Friend of the College
Mike Collins, ’85 Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
Rocky Holscher, ’68 Friend of the College
Jimmy Richardson Friend of the College
Bonnie Bennett, ’88 Retailing
Alexander English, ’91 Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Terry K. Schmoyer, ’88 Friend of the College
Susan L. Turner, ’88 Retailing
Timothy J. Carrier, ’92 Media Arts
Daniel R. Kneece, ’91 Media Arts
Brenda Riley Croft, ’85 Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management
H. Gordon Humphries, ’79 Media Arts
Gunnells Humphries, ’79 Media Arts
Isabel M. Hill Media Arts
D. Dennis Pontiere Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration
Vincent Degenhart Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Helen C. Foley Office Administration
Jeffrey D. Monks Media Arts
Joe D. Chinnes Media Arts
Reginald S. Hall Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Sandra K. McKinney Office Administration
Charles T. Gatch Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Holly R. Keyes Media Arts
Robert L. Ariail Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Dennis E. Moore Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration
Donnie B. Turbeville Office Administration
Linda J. Amason Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Mary Ann Isabelle Criminal Justice
Thomas J. Grenkowski Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration
Susan G. Hendley Child Development
Robert R. Rainwater Retail Management
David M. Ross General Commerce
Ellen B. Sitter Office Administration
Diana L. Weynand Media Arts
Lyn Eleazer Bethea, ’81 Retail Management
Dorothy A. Chapman, ’75 Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Lynn Mayfield Christian, ’75 Child Development
W. Lloyd Cogdill, ’78 General Commerce
Andrea W. Loney, ’78 Criminal Justice
Angela S. Myers Office Administration
Dale Thomas Media Arts
Deanna R. Williams Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration
Melita Fichner Faison, ’79 Child Development
Libby Larosa Green, ’68 General Commerce
James R. Metts, ’74 Criminal Justice
Gene B. Parks, ’76 Retail Management
Jesse P. Pratt, ’73 Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies
Florence O. Roach, ’80 Office Administration
Larry G. Turner, ’74 Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration
Karen Chandler Bolding, ’67 Office Administration
Margaret J. Gamble, ’74 Child Development
Donald E. Hartley, ’90 Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Administration
Charles E. McCurry, ’78 Retail Management
Darrel R. Rudisill, ’80 Child Development
Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.