Board of Trustees 2021/2022

Board Officers

  • Chair - John B. Frank '78, P'12

    Vice Chairman, Oaktree Capital Management, L.P.

    California

    Bio

    Professional History: John Frank is Oaktree’s vice chairman and works closely with Howard Marks, Bruce Karsh, and Jay Wintrob in managing the firm. John joined in 2001 as general counsel and was named Oaktree’s managing principal in early 2006, a position he held for about nine years. As managing principal, John was the firm’s principal executive officer and responsible for all aspects of the firm’s management. Prior to joining Oaktree, Mr. Frank was a partner of the Los Angeles law firm of Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP, where he managed a number of notable merger and acquisition transactions. While at that firm, he served as primary outside counsel to publicly and privately held corporations and as special counsel to various boards of directors and special board committees. Prior to joining Munger Tolles in 1984, John served as a law clerk to the Honorable Frank M. Coffin of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. Prior to attending law school, Mr. Frank served as a legislative assistant to the Honorable Robert F. Drinan, Member of Congress. Mr. Frank holds a BA, with honors in history, from Wesleyan University and a JD magna cum laude from the University of Michigan Law School, where he was managing editor of the Michigan Law Review and a member of the Order of the Coif. He is a member of the State Bar of California and, while in private practice, was listed in Woodward & White's Best Lawyers in America. John is a member of the board of directors of Chevron Corporation and a trustee of Wesleyan University, The James Irvine Foundation, Good Samaritan Hospital of Los Angeles, and the XPRIZE Foundation.

    At Wesleyan: As an undergraduate, John was the president of his class, a member of the Psi Upsilon fraternity, and was also active in the debating club. As an alumnus, he has hosted several events for Wesleyan and was a member of the Los Angeles Campaign Council.

  • Senior Vice Chair - Anne S. Goldrach '79, P'12

    CEO/President, Greystone Management Corp.

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Anne is CEO and president of Greystone Management Corp., a fifth-generation family business that owns and manages a diverse group of commercial, retail, and residential properties in Manhattan. In an earlier life, Anne was an art historian and curator specializing in nineteenth-century painting and costume.

    Anne serves on several boards, including the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, a leading New York arts advocacy group, where she is a member of the real estate and finance committees. She is also a member of the visiting committee of the Department of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts at the Morgan Library and Museum.

    At Wesleyan: Anne received her BA with high honors in 1979, majoring in the history of art. While at Wesleyan, she worked in the Print Room at the Davison Art Center and was a teaching assistant in the History of Photography. After graduation, she continued her studies in the history of art at Yale, and later obtained a master's of finance from NYU/Schack Institute. Her younger son, Noah, is a member of the Class of 2012.

  • Vice Chair - Phoebe C. Boyer '89, P'19, '23

    President and CEO, The Children's Aid Society

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: In 2014, the Children’s Aid Board of Trustees selected Phoebe Boyer to be the organization’s 11th president and chief executive officer. Since then, Phoebe has worked to strengthen its programs and operations with a keen focus on optimizing the impact on the lives of children, youth, and families. Under her leadership, Children’s Aid was recognized for exceptional management practices as a 2017 winner of the New York Community Trust’s Nonprofit Excellence Awards. 

    City & State honored Phoebe on its 2018 Above & Beyond list of 30 remarkable women, and selected her and nine other nonprofit leaders for its 2019 Responsible 100 list of people who are improving their communities and making transformative change. 

    Phoebe came to Children’s Aid from the Robertson Foundation, a $1 billion foundation created by Julian Robertson and his family that takes a targeted approach to supporting critical national issues, including education reform. She spent more than a decade at the Foundation, most recently as its executive director, where she oversaw operations and grant-making of more than $100 million annually. During her tenure, she developed and executed the foundation’s national K-12 education reform strategy. 

    She also served for 12 years (1999–2012) as the executive director of the Tiger Foundation, founded by Julian Robertson as well, with a mission to break the cycle of poverty in New York City. During her tenure at the Tiger Foundation, the organization provided more than $112 million in funding to New York City nonprofits in the areas of education, youth development, job training, and social services. Phoebe also raised more than $200 million to support the Foundation’s work. 

    Before joining the foundations, Phoebe worked at Inwood House, a nonprofit in upper Manhattan, where she helped distressed teens take charge of their lives by educating them in making sound decisions, preventing pregnancy, and building self-esteem. 

    Phoebe graduated from Wesleyan University, on whose board she serves, and earned her MBA from Columbia Business School. She serves on the board of Independent Sector and is also an inaugural member of the Pahara Aspen Education Fellowship. 

    At Wesleyan: As an undergraduate, Phoebe majored in art history, played on the varsity lacrosse team, edited the yearbook, and was a senior interviewer. As an alumna, she has been involved in all of her reunions, was awarded the Wesleyan University Service Award in 2004, and served as an alumni-elected trustee and on the advisory board of the Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship.

  • Vice Chair - Robert A. Pruzan '85

    Founding Partner, Centerview Partners

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Robert is a partner and cofounder of Centerview Partners. As an investment banker with over 30 years of experience, he has advised on many of the largest and most complex mergers, acquisitions, and strategic restructuring transactions around the globe. He has completed nearly $1 trillion of transactions in his career across a broad range of industry sectors. In addition, he is a leading advisor to boards of directors in shareholder activist defense and special committee assignments.

    Prior to Centerview, Robert was head of Global Investment Banking and CEO of North America at Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein and president of Wasserstein Perella & Co. He holds a BA from Wesleyan University and graduated with distinction from Harvard Business School. He is a former member of McKinsey & Company, where he specialized in strategic consulting for consumer products companies and financial institutions. Robert is a steadfast supporter and board member of various artistic, educational, and cultural organizations. He serves as chairman of the board of the Jewish Museum and is a former cochairman of the board of trustees for the Ethical Culture Fieldston School. Robert serves as the vice chairman of the board of ArtsConnection, a leading not-for-profit organization that provides arts education to New York City public school children, and he is a trustee on the board of Wesleyan University. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is married, with two children, and lives in New York City.

  • Secretary - Essel W. Bailey Jr. '66

    Managing Director, Alpha Capital Inc., President of Orion Care Services and Vice Chair of Knightsbridge Winery

    Michigan

    Bio

    Professional History: Mr. Bailey is a lawyer and private investor with a long involvement in healthcare services to the elderly. He has organized and run two public companies, and served as a director of several publicly listed companies; he has spent the last 30 years working with the capital markets, with investment banks and other financial organizations in real estate, finance, healthcare, and manufacturing in the U.S., the UK, and Australia.

    After several years in Michigan state government, Mr. Bailey spent 16 years with the Detroit law firm Dykema Gossett, where he was a partner. He left the firm in 1987 to organize and capitalize several public and private companies and founded Omega Healthcare Investors and Omega Worldwide Inc., both public providers of healthcare finance, the latter in the UK and Australia. He retired from public companies in 2000 and organized a private company providing healthcare services through retirement communities, assisted living, and nursing facilities. He serves as a director of nonprofit organizations related to mental health and education, and is active on conservation issues, serving as an officer of the Michigan chapter of The Nature Conservancy and as a supporter of the College of the Environment at Wesleyan. He is also chair of the Economic Dinner Group, a town-gown organization at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He continues as a director and a principal owner of companies engaged in real estate, healthcare services to the elderly, and the production of the premium California wine Knights Bridge. Raised in Michigan and educated at Cranbrook School, he also holds a JD from the University of Michigan Law School.

    At Wesleyan: Essel received his BA in history in 1966. He spent four years on the track team, running hurdles and high jumping, and was a member of Eclectic and the Student Judiciary Council, charged with issues related to the Honor Code. Essel has also been a member of the President’s Council.

Board Members

  • Felicia Appenteng '07

    Chair, IE Africa Center; Managing Director, The IE Fund

    New York

    Bio
    Professional HistoryFelicia Appenteng is the founding chair of The IE Africa Center, a newly created center by IE University, whose mission is to shine a light on African solutions to global challenges. As chair, she provides strategic and operational leadership to all of the center’s initiatives. She is also managing director of the IE Fund, a nonprofit organization that supports IE University's growth through strategic advisory and scholarships. 
    Felicia is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and serves on the term member advisory committee.

    At Wesleyan: Felicia majored in the College of Letters, writing an honors thesis about medieval Spain entitled "The Wings of Legacy: Alfonso X el Sabio and the Virgin Mary." She was a member of the women's crew team and of Wesleyan without Borders.  
  • Leo Y. Au '71

    Senior Vice President and Corporate Treasurer (Retired), Mellon Financial Corporation

    Florida

    Bio

    Professional History: Leo is a retired senior vice president and corporate treasurer of Mellon Financial Corporation, a global financial services company previously headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pa. At Mellon, he held senior positions in finance, foreign exchange, and capital markets. As treasurer, Leo had primary responsibility for asset/liability management, capital management, currency exposure management, corporate risk management, and employee benefits finance functions. He retired in 2007 after the completion of Mellon’s merger with the Bank of New York.

    Leo serves on the board of directors of the Harvard Club of Naples. He served as the participation chair for his 25th reunion class gift at Harvard Business School in 2001. Leo received an MA from the University of Chicago and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

    At Wesleyan: Leo was a sociology major. He was involved with WESU-FM and was a Wesleyan volunteer. He received a Wesleyan University Service Award in 2011.

  • Andrea G. Barthwell '76

    Founder, Encounter Medical Group

    Illinois

    Bio

    Professional History: Andrea Grubb Barthwell, M.D., D.F.A.S.A.M., is the founder of Encounter Medical Group, P.C., manages and consults through the global health care policy firm EMGlobal, and is the director at Two Dreams, a comprehensive alcoholism and addiction treatment system. Reflecting her long-term commitment to individuals with Opioid Use Disorder (OUD), she was named as the founding chair of the board of the Foundation for Opioid Response Effort (FORE) with a $100 million endowment.

    She served as a member of President George W. Bush’s sub-cabinet as deputy director for demand reduction in the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), where she was a principal advisor on policies aimed at reducing the demand for illicit drugs. 

    Dr. Barthwell received a BA in psychology from Wesleyan University, and a MD from the University of Michigan Medical School.

    Before joining the Wesleyan Board, Andrea conducted interviews of candidates, served as an alumni-elected trustee, and received the Distinguished Alumni’s Award at her 30th reunion.

    At Wesleyan: Andrea worked on her class yearbook in layout and design, played intramural softball, and fed children from Middletown at the Black Panther-sponsored Breakfast Program at the Malcolm X House.

  • Adam C. Bird '87, P'19, '22

    Senior Partner, McKinsey & Company

    Germany

    Bio

    Professional History: Adam is a senior partner with McKinsey & Company and the global leader of the consumer tech & media practice. He advises the top management of the most disruptive and disrupted companies on their most critical business issues. His client work in the U.S., Europe, and Asia has spanned all major media, entertainment, and consumer technology segments. Adam was one of the first people to be elected directly to become a McKinsey senior partner and is a member of the senior partners committee.

    He was selected as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. He is a board member of the Paley Center for Media and the past vice chair of the board of the Munich International School.

    Prior to McKinsey, Adam was the youngest senior partner with Booz Allen Hamilton (sold to the Carlyle Group) and the managing director of the Global Consumer and Media practices, as well as a member of their board of directors. He moved to Europe over two decades ago to cofound an advisory firm (sold to Cap Gemini).

    At Wesleyan: Adam graduated with honors from the College of Social Studies. While at Wesleyan, he was a student representative to the board of trustees, a teaching assistant for French, and an avid participant in a wide range of sports. He is the father of Matthew ’19 and Sophie ’22.

  • Marc N. Casper '90, P'23

    Chairman, President, and CEO, Thermo Fisher Scientific

    Massachusetts

    Bio

    Professional History: Marc Casper is chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Thermo Fisher Scientific, the world leader in serving science. He leads 75,000 global colleagues to fulfill the company's mission of enabling its customers to make the world healthier, cleaner, and safer.

    Marc joined Thermo Electron Corporation in 2001 as president of the life sciences sector. He was named senior vice president in 2003, and in 2005 he assumed responsibility for all of the company’s operating divisions. After the merger that created Thermo Fisher Scientific in 2006, he was named executive vice president and president of its analytical technologies businesses, and in 2008 he became the company's chief operating officer. Marc has been chief executive officer and president since 2009, and he became chairman in 2020.

    Prior to joining Thermo Fisher, Marc served as president, chief executive officer, and a director of Kendro Laboratory Products. Previously, he was president-Americas for clinical diagnostics provider Dade Behring Inc. He began his career as a strategy consultant at Bain & Company and later joined Bain Capital.

    Marc serves on the boards of Mass General Brigham, U.S. China Business Council, and Wesleyan University. He was previously a director of the Advisory Board Company, Zimmer Holdings and U.S. Bancorp. He is a member of the Business Council and the Business Roundtable. He earned an MBA with high distinction from Harvard Business School and is a graduate of Wesleyan University, where he received a BA degree in economics.

    At Wesleyan: Marc earned his bachelor’s degree in economics. He was a member of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. He was co-director of WESU-FM sports, an avid fan of ice hockey, and the manager of the Cardinals men’s ice hockey team.

  • Eric B. Dachs '98

    Founder and CEO of X2X

    California

    Bio
    Professional History: Eric is the Founder and CEO of X2X, an entertainment technology company providing hardware and software solutions for the entire feature film and television production lifecycle. X2X started as PIX System (PIX) after Eric worked as a sound designer and editor on feature film projects at Lucasfilm’s Skywalker Sound and The Saul Zaentz Film Center. Working on feature films allowed Eric a front-row seat to ongoing industry changes introduced by new digital filmmaking techniques, and the increased global distribution of film and TV projects. While working on the film "Panic Room" for David Fincher, he started PIX to address the opportunities provided by these changes. Today X2X has provided services to over 5,000 feature film and television productions for each of the major studios, production companies, and streaming content providers across 60 different countries. In 2019, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences awarded Eric with a Sci-Tech Academy Award for his work on the PIX System. Eric also serves on the boards of the Fremont Group, a private investment firm, and the Firehawks, a nonprofit youth lacrosse club. He lives in the San Francisco Bay area with his wife and three children.

    At Wesleyan: Eric transferred from Bates College to Wesleyan as a junior, and majored in theater. When his first honors thesis topic, “Why the Wesleyan Theater Major is the Best Undergraduate Business Education,” was “redirected” by his advisor, Eric wrote instead on the sound design process for the Bill Francisco-directed play "Little Murders."
  • Nyasha Shani Foy '06

    Senior Counsel, Complex Media

    New York

    Bio
    Professional History: Nyasha Foy is senior counsel, business and legal affairs for brand partnerships and eCommerce at Complex Media. At Complex, she advises on and structures a wide variety of deals for branded content, licensing, and other company initiatives including ComplexCon, ComplexLand, and Complex B.O.S.S., a 12-week mentorship program for minority-owned businesses. Prior to joining Complex, Nyasha served in various business and legal affairs roles at VICE Media Group and Broadway Video.

    Nyasha received her JD from New York Law School. She is admitted to practice in California and New York.

    Outside of her career in business and legal affairs, Nyasha is a multi-hyphenate thought leader and creative. She serves as co-chair of the Black Entertainment and Sports Lawyers Association’s (BESLA) Young Lawyers division; and as a member of the National Black Law Students Association, Northeast Region Advisory Board. She also sings soprano in the New York City Bar Chorus.

    Prior to joining the Wesleyan board, Nyasha served as the chair of the Wesleyan Black Alumni Council (2013–2020); host of the Wesleyan Black Alumni Council BAC Annual Kwanzaa Event (2013–2020); member of the Wesleyan BAC Memorial Prize Committee (2013–2020); and secretary (2014–2016) and vice chair (2016–2018) of the Wesleyan Alumni Association Executive Committee.

    At Wesleyan: Nyasha earned her bachelor’s degree in music and French; in addition to composing and directing her senior thesis recital, she also wrote her senior thesis on hip-hop culture in France and the U.S. through the lens of rap music. Nyasha was a writer and sports editor for the Argus, member of Ujaama, and a student worker in the former Davenport Campus Center. At Wesleyan, she became a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.
  • Michael T. Fries '85

    President & CEO, Liberty Global

    Colorado

    Bio

    Professional History: Mike is chief executive officer of Liberty Global, a company he cofounded 29 years ago and has led to become the largest international TV and broadband company in the world with 21 million customers, 27,000 employees, and revenue of $15 billion. Mike is executive chairman of Liberty Latin America and serves on the boards of Grupo Televisa and Lionsgate. Mike is an engaged industry and community leader and also serves as board member for Cable Labs and trustee for The Paley Center for Media, and he chairs the board for the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver and the Biennial of the Americas. He is a digital communications governor and steering committee member of the World Economic Forum and a member of Young Presidents’ Organization. Recognitions for his achievements include EY Entrepreneur of the Year in Media, Entertainment and Communications, Industry Leader of the Year by Digital TV Europe, and inductions into the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame and the Cable Hall of Fame. He holds an MBA from Columbia University, where he is a member of the board of overseers for the Business School.

    At Wesleyan: Mike double-majored in economics and government, rowed varsity crew, and was a Psi U member. He has generously endowed the Charles W. Fries Professor of Film Studies and Curator of the Wesleyan Cinema Archives in honor of his father, and he recently opened the Fries Center for Global Studies.

  • Scott Gottlieb '94

    Connecticut

    Bio

    Professional History: Scott Gottlieb is a physician and served as the 23rd commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Dr. Gottlieb’s work focuses on advancing public health through developing and implementing innovative approaches to improving medical outcomes, reshaping health care delivery, and expanding consumer choice and safety. He serves on the boards of Pfizer Inc. and Illumina, Inc., is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a partner at the venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates.

    Dr. Gottlieb is an aggressive advocate for advancing the health of patients, promoting health care access, and driving innovation. The agency’s historic and prolific advances in new policy distinguished his tenure as the FDA’s commissioner, in addition to a record-setting number of approvals of novel drugs, medical devices, and generic medicines. Under his leadership, the FDA advanced new frameworks for the modern and safe and effective oversight of gene therapies, cell-based regenerative medicines, targeted drugs, and digital health devices. The FDA implemented new reforms to standardize drug reviews and make historic improvements of post-market data collection and the use of real-world evidence. They promoted policies to reduce death and disease from tobacco, improve food safety, and aggressively confront addiction crises.

    Previously, Dr. Gottlieb served as the FDA’s deputy commissioner for medical and scientific affairs and before that, as a senior adviser to the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, where he helped advance policies to improve health care quality and promote the effective use of new medical technologies. Dr. Gottlieb is widely published in leading medical journals and periodicals, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. He has held editorial positions on the British Medical Journal and the Journal of the American Medical Association and is a regular contributor to CNBC. Fortune magazine recognized him as one of the “World’s 50 Greatest Leaders” in 2018 and again in 2019. In 2018 and 2019 Modern Healthcare named Dr. Gottlieb the “Most Influential Clinical Executive” in its annual listing of 50 top physician executives, and he appeared on their list again in 2020. Time magazine named him one of its “50 People Transforming Health Care in 2018.” Dr. Gottlieb is also the author of Uncontrolled Spread: Why COVID-19 Crushed Us and How We Can Defeat the Next Pandemic.

    Dr. Gottlieb was a practicing hospitalist, and he is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine. He lives in Westport, Connecticut, with his wife and three daughters.

  • Susannah Gray '82

    Retired, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Royalty Pharma

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: From January 2005 through 2018, Susannah Gray was the executive vice president and chief financial officer of Royalty Pharma, the largest aggregator of pharmaceutical royalty interests worldwide. In 2019, she took on the additional responsibility of heading strategy for the company. Prior to joining Royalty Pharma, she had a 14-year career in banking, working in various capacities within high yield and structured finance departments of Chase Securities, Merrill Lynch and CIBC World Markets.

    In addition to serving on Wesleyan’s Board of Trustees, Susannah serves on a number of corporate boards, including 4D Molecular Therapeutics, Maravai Life Sciences, Morphic Therapeutic, and Apria Healthcare. She is also a board member of a number nonprofit organizations, including the Susan G. Komen Foundation, Street Squash, the Colby College Art Museum, and the German Marshall Fund. Susannah earned an MBA from Columbia University in 1990. She lives in New York City with her husband, John Lyons.

    At Wesleyan: Susannah majored in the College of Social Studies and received a BA with honors.

  • Joshua B. Guild '96

    Associate Professor of History and African American Studies, Princeton University

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Joshua Guild is an associate professor in the departments of history and African American studies at Princeton University. He specializes in 20th-century African American social and political history, urban history, and the making of the modern African diaspora. At Princeton, he teaches courses on post-emancipation African American history, the Black freedom movement, memory and history, the Black intellectual tradition, and the history of New Orleans, among other topics. His first book explores the cultural politics of Black migration and community formation in postwar New York City and London. His current research focuses on the history of struggles for racial and economic justice in New Orleans, from the 1960s to the present.

    After graduating from Wesleyan, Josh taught elementary school and worked at an education nonprofit before pursuing a joint PhD in African American studies and history at Yale University. He has been the recipient of fellowships from the Mellon Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the Institute for Citizens & Scholars and he has been a visiting fellow at Harvard University, Columbia University, Dartmouth College, and the University of Cambridge. At Princeton, he has served as director of graduate affairs in the department of African American studies, on the executive committee of the Center for Digital Humanities, on the faculty advisory committee on policy, and as a faculty mentor for the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Program. Over the years, Josh has provided commentary to a wide range of media outlets, including NPR, BBC World Service, MSNBC, WNYC, Southern California Public Radio, and CNN.com.

    At Wesleyan: Josh graduated with honors in history and African American studies. A work-study student, he was a co-chair of Ujamaa, a member of the Students of Color Council, a columnist for the Argus, and served as a senior interviewer of the Office of Admission.

  • Sarah B. Kendall '77, P'14

    President, Adelphic Educational Fund, Inc.

    New Hampshire

    Bio

    Professional History: Sarah has been president of the Adelphic Educational Fund, Inc., since 2015, and a board member since 2009. This 501 (c)3 private foundation supports Wesleyan students through internship funding (summer grants) as well as funding undergrad-chosen and implemented events. The AEF funds specific university projects that benefit the wider Wesleyan community granting, approximately $1.8 million since 1971. Other philanthropic commitments have spanned music, education, and civic events and organizations, including founding president of the Mid-Manhattan Performing Arts Foundation, Inc., a 501 (c)3 foundation formed by members and staff of St. Bartholomew’s Church to support and produce Great Music (a concert series) and the St. Bart’s Players (an equity theatre), from 1991-2002.

    From 1979 to 1990, Sarah pivoted from work with children to finance, with her last position as manager for US Investor Relations at Nova Nordisk A/S. She also had the opportunity to do strategic planning with Novo Bioventures. While at Novo she attended the certificate course of the Smith Management Program and “Managing Cultural Change” at INSEAD. Prior to that, she was a VP covering biotechnology and medical technology as an institutional analyst at Dean Witter Reynolds and Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.

    Her local philanthropic and volunteer activities are concentrated in Harrisville, N.H., and environs, including the library and Harrisville Pond Association, as well as local chamber and choral music, with a focus on children and youth.

    At Wesleyan: Sarah double-majored in religion and music at Wesleyan, culminating with a senior thesis performance of her composition, “Another Pilgrim’s Progress.” Membership in Alpha Delta Phi offered friendship, the opportunity to co-edit AdLit, engage in change from within (coeducational), and musical colleagues. She has continued her Wesleyan connections by serving on the Adelphic Literary Society board as well as various collaborations with Wesleyan’s music department. She is the daughter of David A. Kendall ’52 and devoted fan of daughter Eleonore Bayles ’14.

  • Kiki Kennedy P'16, '20

    Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Yale University

    Connecticut

    Bio

    Professional History: Since 1992, Kiki has been an assistant clinical professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Yale University Medical School. She currently leads an advocacy training initiative for the Yale Department of Psychiatry and also supervises psychiatry residents in psychotherapy for the Connecticut Mental Health Center and the Yale Long Term Psychotherapy Clinic. In addition, Kiki is a current member of the Council on Advocacy and Government Relations for the American Psychiatric Association, a member of the Committee on Psychotherapy for the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry and on the executive committee for the Austen Riggs Center, a nonprofit psychiatric hospital in Stockbridge, Mass. Since 1991, she has seen outpatients in her private psychiatry practice in New Haven, Conn.

    Kiki graduated from Brown University with a bachelor of science in psychology and received her MD from the University of Connecticut. She completed her psychiatry residency and a fellowship in psychotherapy at Yale University.

    She also serves as a board member for Connecticut Fund for the Environment, The Connecticut Chapter of the Nature Conservancy, and The Festival of Arts and Ideas.

    At Wesleyan: Kiki volunteered during the WesFest parent panel event in 2015 and also hosted the THIS IS WHY campaign donor recognition event in Hyannis Port, Mass., in 2013. Her daughter, Kiley, graduated from Wesleyan in 2016 with high honors in physics and served as cocaptain of the track and field team. Her son, Teddy, class of 2020, rowed on the men's crew team this past year and is a member of Psi Upsilon. 

  • Degan Mercado Leopold '03

    Diversity Recruiting Program Manager, Bloomberg L.P.

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Degan Mercado Leopold is a diversity recruiting program manager at Bloomberg L.P. In this role, she develops strategic diversity recruiting initiatives to attract and recruit underrepresented talent in entry-level roles in business. Previously, Degan was chief of staff for the National Constituencies and Coalitions team for Mike Bloomberg 2020, responsible for the development of national voter outreach strategies across diverse demographics.

    Prior to this, Degan was senior program manager in corporate philanthropy at Bloomberg, managing the education and technology grant portfolio. In this role, she launched Bloomberg Startup, the company's global education engagement program, which offers year-round mentoring development workshops to support college and career readiness for the next generation of leaders.

    Prior to joining Bloomberg L.P., Degan worked in the New York City mayor’s office during the Bloomberg administration, and in 2009 managed Brooklyn headquarters for Mayor Bloomberg’s reelection campaign. 

    Degan serves on the board of directors of Project Basta, a nonprofit dedicated to closing the employment gap for first-generation college students of color and is co-chair of the Alumnae Diversity Committee for the Spence School in New York City. She received her MPA in public & nonprofit management from New York University’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service and holds a BA from Wesleyan University. 

    At Wesleyan: Degan double-majored in dance and Spanish language and literature, and was co-director of Precision Dance Company.

  • Pritha J. Mittal '96

    Senior Management Consultant, Robin Hood Foundation

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Pritha is a senior management consultant at the Robin Hood Foundation, New York’s largest poverty-fighting organization. She is working across Robin Hood’s community partners to help them build scale and capacity to serve the most vulnerable in New York City and its surrounding boroughs. Prior to joining Robin Hood, Pritha spent 14 years at Deloitte, providing consulting services to senior leadership across the healthcare sector around strategic direction and operations. After graduating from Wesleyan University, she was awarded a fellowship through the National Institutes of Health, where she analyzed the policy implications around genetic cloning.

    Pritha holds a master’s in public health (MPH) and a master’s in business administration (MBA) from Columbia University. She is the vice chair and head of the nominating committee for the Carter Burden Network, the largest provider of services to seniors living in New York City. She also serves on the leadership council for Success Academy and on the executive committee for NEST+m (New Explorations in Science and Technology +Math), a New York City public school for gifted and talented students serving all five boroughs. 

    At Wesleyan: Pritha was a neuroscience major and served as a resident advisor in Clark. She played three varsity sports—tennis, squash, and lacrosse—and in her senior year served as cocaptain of the lacrosse team. Prior to joining the Wesleyan board, Pritha served as one of the class agents for the class of ’96 for several years. 

  • Christine M. Pina '91

    Chief Advancement Officer, Miss Porter’s School

    Connecticut

    Bio

    Professional History: Christine Pina is the chief advancement officer at Miss Porter’s School, where she is a member of the school’s senior leadership team. She is responsible for all fundraising and alumni engagement activities, and she has more than 25 years of experience in education administration.

    Christine’s career in higher education began at Dartmouth College, where she was an associate director of admission and director of student of color recruitment. After studying administration, planning and social policy at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, she transitioned to educational fundraising, becoming the first major gifts officer at The Madeira School in McLean, Va. Christine then took another independent school position as a major gifts officer at her secondary school alma mater, St. Paul’s School in Concord, N.H. She returned to higher education as the director of major gifts at her college alma mater, Wesleyan University, where she oversaw the major gifts, planned giving, and prospect research functions. A Connecticut resident since 2002, Christine became the vice president of Institutional Advancement at the University of Hartford in November of 2011, where she successfully revitalized the fundraising program. In July 2016, Christine joined Miss Porter’s, where she leads a team of 16 advancement professionals.

    Christine earned an Ed.M. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) and a BA from Wesleyan University. She serves as a trustee of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education and chairs the CASE Commission on Philanthropy; The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy and chairs that board’s Development Committee, and will begin a term as a parent trustee at South Kent School. She is a former chair of the Harvard Graduate School Alumni Council and served as an appointed director of the Harvard Alumni Association. She holds membership in Jack and Jill of America, is a member of St. James’s Episcopal Church, West Hartford, Conn. She and her husband enjoy spending time in rinks watching their son play ice hockey.

    At Wesleyan: Christine received the Wesleyan University Service Award in 2016. She has been Wesleyan's class agent since 1999 and is the chair of Wesleyan's 25th reunion, class of 1991.

  • Philip J. Rauch '71

    Managing Director and Wealth Advisor, William Blair

    Maryland

    Bio

    Professional History: Philip is a managing director and wealth advisor with William Blair's Private Wealth Management group, located in Baltimore, Maryland. Prior to joining William Blair, Philip worked at Brown Advisory, Alex Brown & Sons, T. Rowe Price, and Morgan Stanley. He is a chartered financial analyst, certified public accountant, and a graduate of the Harvard Business School.

    Phil serves as a trustee of CenterStage, a Baltimore theater company; the Rauch Foundation, a private foundation; and several other nonprofit organizations.

    At Wesleyan: Phil graduated from Wesleyan in 1971 as a government major, cum laude, and spent a semester abroad in Germany. He was a member of the crew team and Beta Theta Pi.

  • John B. Rhea '87

    Partner, Centerview Partners LLC

    New York

    Bio
    Professional History: John Rhea is a partner at Centerview Partners LLC, a leading independent investment banking and advisory firm, based in New York City. From June 2017 to September 2020, Mr. Rhea was senior advisor and president, corporate finance and capital markets at Siebert Williams Shank & Co., LLC., where he led M&A advisory, capital markets, and sales and trading for all corporate equities and fixed-income securities, and orchestrated the firm’s successful merger with The Williams Capital Group LP. Mr. Rhea is a former senior advisor to The Boston Consulting Group, and founder and managing partner of RHEAL Capital Management, LLC, a real estate development and investment firm with over one million square feet of commercial real estate. From 2009 to 2014, John was chairman and CEO of the New York City Housing Authority, the largest owner-operator of affordable housing in the nation, appointed by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. Prior to serving in the Bloomberg administration, Mr. Rhea was managing director and co-head of global consumer and retail investment banking at Barclays Capital (and predecessor Lehman Brothers) and managing director at JPMorgan Chase & Co. Mr. Rhea has advised on more than $300 billion in transactions over his career.

    Since 2015, John has served on the board of directors of Invitation Homes (NYSE:INVH), where he is a member of the nominating and corporate governance committee, chairman of the compensation and management development committee, and former chairman of the audit committee. Mr. Rhea is a founding investor in WhistlePig LLC, an award-winning American craft whiskey company, and serves on the board of managers and chairs the audit committee.

    John has a long record of non-profit service and in addition to serving as a trustee of Wesleyan, he is a director of Red Cross Greater New York and University of Detroit Jesuit High School. John majored in the College of Social Studies and received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Wesleyan University (Class of ’87) and MBA from the Harvard Business School.
  • Rashida Richardson '08

    Assistant Professor of Law and Political Science, Northeastern University and Senior Policy Advisor for Data and Democracy, White House Office of Science Technology Policy

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Rashida Richardson is an assistant professor of law and political science at Northeastern University and a senior policy advisor for data and democracy in the White House Office of Science Technology Policy. Prior to her current roles, Rashida was a visiting scholar at Rutgers Law School and a senior fellow in the Digital Innovation and Democracy Initiative at the German Marshall Fund, where she researched the social and civil rights implications of data-driven technologies, including artificial intelligence, and developed policy interventions and regulatory strategies regarding emerging technologies, government surveillance, racial discrimination, and the technology sector. Rashida has previously worked on a range of civil rights issues at the AI Now Institute, the American Civil Liberties Union of New York (NYCLU), and the Center for HIV Law and Policy. She received her JD from Northeastern University School of Law.

    At Wesleyan: Rashida majored in the College of Social Studies, graduating with honors. She served in a variety of leadership positions including senior class president, residential advisor, and co-coordinator and sexual health educator of AIDS and Sexual Health Awareness (ASHA). A tutor and mentor for the Writers' Workshop, she also served on the editorial board of Historical Narrative (Wesleyan’s undergraduate history journal) and was a member of the student budgetary committee and the water polo team.

  • Michele A. Roberts '77

    Executive Director, National Basketball Players Association

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Notably, Michele Roberts is the first woman to head a major professional sports union in North America. In her role as executive director, Ms. Roberts serves as the primary advocate for all players, ensuring the protection of the organization and its membership, including serving as the lead negotiator in all collective bargaining activities. Prior to this selection, Ms. Roberts was a renowned trial lawyer and member of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom’s Litigation Group. Her practice focused on complex civil and white-collar criminal litigation before state and federal courts and in administrative proceedings. Ms. Roberts has tried more than 100 cases to jury verdicts, representing clients in a wide variety of areas, including products liability, white collar, racketeering, securities regulation violations, Title VII issues, and premises liability. She has been called the “finest pure trial lawyer in Washington, D.C.” by Washingtonian Magazine. Ms. Roberts is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers.

    Ms. Roberts also served for eight years in the office of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, where she was named chief of the trial division. She served as counsel in more than 40 jury trials.

    Ms. Roberts is a frequent lecturer and presenter to both the bench and bar on a variety of topics related to litigation and trial practice. She served as an adjunct member of the faculty at Harvard Law School, teaching a trial advocacy workshop and was an instructor with the National Institute of Trial Advocacy.

    Ms. Roberts received her JD from University of California at Berkeley.

    At Wesleyan: Ms. Roberts received a BA in Government.

  • Laura Davidson Ross '93

    Associate Head of School, Harvard-Westlake School

    California

    Bio

    Professional History: A native of Santa Barbara, Calif., Laura is currently the associate head of school of the Harvard-Westlake School in Studio City, Calif., and has served in this capacity since the fall of 2020 after three years as head of the upper school campus. Prior to her position at Harvard-Westlake she was the head of upper school at Greenhill School in Dallas, Texas, for five years. Before assuming these two division-head positions, Laura had a 17-year career in college admissions and college counseling. She worked in the admissions offices of Scripps College in Claremont, Calif., and Columbia University in New York, New York, and as director of college counseling at Convent of the Sacred Heart High School in San Francisco, Calif., and St. Stephen’s Episcopal School in Austin, Texas.

    Laura is also a teacher of world religions, ethics and social change, and mindfulness and meditation. She has been a soccer coach and a boarding school dorm parent, and she has led multiple committees and school-wide initiatives. A former member of the board of directors of the Magellan International School in Austin, Texas, she was elected to the board of trustees at Wesleyan University, her alma mater. Previously, she also had served on Wesleyan’s alumni admissions advisory council for several years. She is married to Gregg Ross (Wesleyan ’90) and they have two children, Casey, 16, and Graham, 14.

    Laura majored in religion at Wesleyan and earned an MA from Stanford in higher education administration and student affairs.

    At Wesleyan: Laura was a member of the women’s varsity soccer team, sang in the Ebony Singers, and worked with the Sexual Assault Education Program. She studied abroad in the spring of her junior year in Avignon, France.

  • Michael S. Roth '78

    President, Wesleyan University

    Connecticut

    Bio
    Professional History: Michael S. Roth '78 became the 16th president of Wesleyan University in 2007, after having served as Hartley Burr Alexander Professor of Humanities at Scripps College, Associate Director of the Getty Research Institute, and President of the California College of the Arts. At Wesleyan, Roth has overseen the launch of academic programs such as the Allbritton Center for the Study of Public Life and the Shapiro Center for Writing, as well as four new interdisciplinary colleges emphasizing advanced research and cohort-building in the areas of the environment, film, East Asian studies, and integrative sciences. Under his leadership, Wesleyan had its most ambitious fundraising campaign in its history, raising more than $482 million, primarily for financial aid. Roth has undertaken a number of initiatives that have energized the curriculum and helped to make a Wesleyan education more affordable and accessible to students from underrepresented groups—creating a supportive and diverse campus community that inspires students to achieve their personal best.

    Author and curator (most notably of the exhibition “Sigmund Freud: Conflict and Culture,” which opened at the Library of Congress in 1998), Roth describes his scholarly interests as centered on “how people make sense of the past.” His 2014 book, Beyond the University: Why Liberal Education Matters (Yale University Press), has been a powerful tool for students, their families, faculty, and policymakers who are wrestling with the future of higher education in America. It was recognized in 2016 with the Assocation of American Colleges & Universities’ Frederic W. Ness award for a book that best illuminates the goals and practices of a contemporary liberal education. Roth’s newest book, Safe Enough Spaces: A Pragmatist’s Approach to Inclusion, Free Speech, and Political Correctness (Yale University Press, 2019), addresses some of the most contentious issues in American higher education, including affirmative action, safe spaces, and questions of free speech. Roth regularly publishes essays, book reviews, and commentaries in the national media and scholarly journals. He continues to teach undergraduate courses and through Coursera has offered MOOCs, most recently, “How to Change the World.”
  • Bozoma Saint John '99

    Global Chief Marketing Officer, Netflix

    California

    Bio

    Professional HistoryBozoma Saint John is the global chief marketing officer at Netflix, the world’s leading streaming entertainment service with 200 million paid memberships in over 190 countries enjoying TV series, documentaries and feature films across a wide variety of genres and languages.

    At the beginning of her career, Boz got her start in marketing at Spike Lee’s advertising agency, Spike DDB. She then went on to manage brands within the PepsiCo beverages portfolio, before becoming head of music and entertainment marketing at the CPG giant; followed by head of global consumer marketing at Apple Music & iTunes. She then went on to serve as chief brand officer at Uber, before taking on the CMO role for Endeavor (including WME, IMG, UFC, Miss Universe, 160over90, etc).

    Boz has been recognized for her breakthrough work by both the industry and her peers. Her career has been marked by induction into the American Advertising Federation Hall of Achievement (2014) and Billboard’s Women in Music Hall of Fame (2018, 2020), as well as recognition on The Hollywood Reporter’s Women in Entertainment Power 100 list (2018) and on Forbes’ World’s Most Influential CMOs list (2018). Boz has also been featured on the cover of Adweek as “one of the most exciting personalities in advertising” and on lists ranging from Fast Company’s and Ad Age’s Most Creative People to Ebony’s 100 Powerful Executives, Black Enterprise’s Most Powerful Women in Business and Fortune’s Most Influential CMOs. 

    In 2020, Boz launched a podcast alongside award-winning journalist Katie Couric, “Back to Biz with Katie and Boz,” which explores the ways in which thought leaders, CEOs, and innovators are responding to the societal shifts that have been ushered in by the coronavirus pandemic. Additionally, Saint John launched the #ShareTheMicNow Instagram initiative, alongside Luvvie Ajayi Jones, Glennon Doyle, and Stacey Bendet. On June 10, 2020, 52 Black women took over the Instagram feeds of 52 white women with large platforms, magnifying Black women and the important work that they’re doing in order to catalyze change. The campaign was incredibly successful, collecting 17 billion impressions.

    During the 2020 spring semester, Professor Frances Frei of Harvard Business School used Boz’s successful marketing career as a case study in her MBA class “Leading Difference.” Boz appeared as a guest lecturer for students and proved to be so valuable that she was asked to teach her own course, “Anatomy of A Badass,” during the January 2021 semester. 

    Boz is a member of Verizon Media's Global Advisors Board. Led by chairwoman, athlete, and entrepreneur Serena Williams, Verizon Media is the media and ad tech arm of Verizon, and includes iconic brands such as Yahoo Sports, Yahoo Finance, Yahoo Entertainment, TechCrunch and HuffPost. Boz’s philanthropic efforts include representing Pencils of Promise as a Global Ambassador to Ghana and serving on the boards of Girls Who Code and Vital Voices. In 2021, Boz was appointed to the board of trustees for Wesleyan University and became a member of the advisory boards for SoHo House and the Tony Elumelu Foundation. 

  • John M. Shapiro '74

    Managing Director, Chieftain Capital Management, Inc.

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: John M. Shapiro is a managing director of Chieftain Capital Management, Inc., an investment advisory firm that he co-founded in 1984 and converted to a family investment office in 2018. Previously, he worked at Central National Corporation and Merrill Lynch & Co. Mr. Shapiro serves as Chairman of Lawyers for Children and is a member of the board and the Trustee Leadership Committee of Wesleyan University. He is also a trustee and member of the executive committees of both Rockefeller University and The Jewish Museum in New York City. He serves as senior vice president of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy and is a member of the board of the Jerusalem Foundation and the Israel Policy Forum. Mr. Shapiro is on the Investment Committee of the JPB Foundation and is a member of The Committee on Drawings and Prints for The Museum of Modern Art. Past positions include: president of the American Jewish Committee, where he remains an honorary president and chairman of the Transatlantic Institute; president of the UJA-Federation of New York; president of The Dalton School in New York City; vice chairman of the American Academy in Rome; and executive committee member of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations. He received a BA degree from Wesleyan University and an MBA from Columbia Business School. He is married with two children.

    At Wesleyan: John was a philosophy major, earning his bachelor’s degree with honors for his creative writing thesis. In addition, he was a member of the rugby club and the intramural hockey league. Since graduation he and his wife, Trustee Emerita Shonni J. Silverberg ’76, have endowed the Shapiro Center for Writing, initiated and provided an endowment for a certificate in Jewish and Israel studies, and funded a number of scholarships. He has been a member of his class reunion committee and received a Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2014.

  • Donald Spencer '77, P'13

    Managing Director and Founding Partner, Siguler Guff & Company

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Donald P. Spencer is a managing director and founding partner of Siguler Guff & Company, a diversified private equity firm. He is the firm's senior advisor, with primary responsibility for strategic issues and special projects. He started his career in 1980 at Sullivan & Cromwell. He is an advisory board member of World Bicycle Relief, a not-for-profit promoting mobility through bicycles in the third world, and adviser to the board of managers of Oakwood Friends School, where he served as president of the board for seven years. He is a former president of Alpha Delta Phi’s alumni organization, the Adelphic Literary Society. He has two daughters and resides in St. Augustine, Florida.

    Donald graduated from Wesleyan with honors and earned a JD from New York University School of Law, where he graduated first in his class.

    At Wesleyan: Donald majored in classical studies. He was active in technical theater and was a member of Alpha Delta Phi.

  • Joel Tillinghast '80

    Portfolio Manager, Fidelity Investments

    Massachusetts

    Bio

    Professional History: Joel Tillinghast is a portfolio manager in the equity division at Fidelity Investments, a leading provider of investment management, retirement planning, portfolio guidance, brokerage, benefits outsourcing, and other financial products and services to institutions, financial intermediaries, and individuals. In this role, Joel is the lead manager for Fidelity Low-Priced Stock Fund and Fidelity Event Driven Opportunities Fund. Additionally, he manages Fidelity Series Intrinsic Opportunities Fund, as well as portfolios available exclusively to Canadian investors. Prior to assuming his current role in December 1989, he worked as an analyst covering coal, personal care, appliances, natural gas, and tobacco at FMR Co. Before joining Fidelity in 1986, Joel held various other positions, including director of research and strategy at Bank of America Futures, research economist at Drexel Burnham Lambert, and analyst at Value Line Investment Survey. He received his MBA in finance from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and is a CFA® charterholder. Joel has been in the financial industry since 1980 and is the author of Big Money Thinks Small (Columbia University Press, 2017), a book about investing.

    At Wesleyan: Joel received his BA in 1980, majoring in economics. While at Wesleyan, he wrote articles and sold ads for the Argus newspaper. He was a student representative on the investment committee of the board of trustees.

  • Adam Usdan '83

    Founder, President and General Partner, Trellus Management Co., LLC

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Adam is a general partner in Trellus Management, a fund that he founded in 1994. From 1994 to 1997, he served as an advisor to Neuberger and Berman, a firm of securities analysts and pension managers. Prior to that, he spent seven years at Odyssey Partners, where he primarily was responsible for investment decisions concerning small to medium capitalization securities.

    Adam is a member of the board of overseers at the Graduate School of International Economics and Finance of Brandeis University. He is a board member of the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services and has been a member of the board of the Park Avenue Synagogue. He is also a member of the Jonas Center for Nursing and Veteran’s Healthcare Advisory Board and the Weill Cornell Dean’s Council.

    He holds an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University with majors in finance, marketing, and accounting (1987). He is an owner of Winter Hill Farm in Freeport, Maine. He serves on the board of Griffin Mining, a zinc and gold producer, as well as on the board of Juhl Energy.

    At Wesleyan: As an undergraduate, Adam lived in Foss Hill. Before joining the Wesleyan board, Adam served on the portfolio subcommittee.

  • Andrew E. Vogel '95

    Co-Chief Investment Officer and Managing Partner, ZMC

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Andrew is the co-chief investment officer and managing partner at ZMC, a leading investor in and operator of media, communications, and entertainment businesses. Andrew is jointly responsible for leading and overseeing the firm’s private equity investment activities, and together with the other managing partners, management of the firm. Andrew serves on a number of private company boards, including as chairman of Education Networks of America (internet/cloud services) and AdThrive (programmatic advertising), and as a board member of 9 Story (animation), ITRenew (hardware lifecycle management), Simeio (cyber security), and The Second City (comedy/improv live events).

    Andrew has over 25 years of investing and finance experience, having previously worked at Ripplewood Holdings, McCown De Leeuw and Co., and Lehman Brothers.

    Andrew earned an MBA from Harvard Business School, where he graduated as a Baker Scholar. He is also an officer of the Board of Trustees of the Browning School. Andrew and his wife, Véronique, live in New York City with their children Sophie and Alexander.

    At Wesleyan: Andrew majored in mathematics and economics and graduated Phi Beta Kappa. While at Wesleyan, Andrew worked as a Ford Foundation writing tutor and was a teaching assistant in macroeconomics. He was the recipient of the White Prize in Economics as well as the 1994 Gilbert Clee Scholar. He also received a Wesleyan University Service Award in 2015 and served on the President’s Council prior to serving on the board.

  • Ellen E. West P'19, '22

    Vice President of Investor Relations, Alphabet (Google)

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Ellen is the vice president of investor relations for Alphabet (the parent company of Google) and co-head of Google’s New York office. She is responsible for telling the company’s story to the investment community. She joined Google in early 2007 to start a communications team in New York and eventually led communications for the advertising business and the Americas. Prior to joining Google, Ellen was a leading consultant in the field of corporate social responsibility, with several years of experience advising multinational companies in the UK, Europe, and the former Soviet Union.

    Ellen started her career as an associate in mergers and acquisitions at Goldman Sachs. She then worked as a research associate at the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration, developing course material for a new program in business ethics. Ellen subsequently held senior management positions with the AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts, United Way International in Moscow, and the Charities Aid Foundation in the UK. Before relocating to New York in 2002, Ellen was a senior consultant with The Corporate Citizenship Company in London, England.

    Ellen is a summa cum laude graduate of the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and has a JD from Stanford Law School.

    At Wesleyan: Ellen is the parent of Kira Newmark ‘19 and Jonah Newmark ‘22.

  • Luke Wood '91, P'25

    Former President, Beats by Dr. Dre

    California

    Bio

    Professional History: Luke Wood is the former president of Beats by Dr. Dre, a premium brand of headphones and speakers that was acquired by Apple in 2014. A producer, guitarist, and music industry vet with more than 20 years of experience, Luke officially joined Beats in 2011. In 2014, Beats was sold to Apple and Luke worked as president of Beats and vice president of Apple from 2014–2020. Prior to that, Luke served as chief strategy officer of Interscope Geffen A&M and president of the imprint DGC Records, where he worked with artists including Weezer, All American Rejects, Rise Against, and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. He began his career with Geffen Records in 1991 as a director of publicity, representing such bands as Nirvana and Sonic Youth. A lifelong songwriter and musician, Luke signed a publishing deal with Universal Music Group in 1996. That same year his band, Sammy, released its third album on Geffen/DGC Records. In August 2014, Luke joined the board of directors for Fender Musical Instruments.

    At Wesleyan: As an undergraduate, Luke majored in American studies. His senior project on resistance and the birth of rock and roll continues to inform his work in business, music, and beyond. He received a Distinguished Alumnus Award at his 25th reunion.

  • John Yang '80

    National Correspondent, PBS NewsHour

    Washington, D.C.

    Bio

    Professional History: John Yang has been an award-winning journalist for four decades. He is currently a national correspondent for the PBS NewsHour, the nightly national broadcast anchored by Judy Woodruff, based in Washington, D.C.

    Previously, he worked for NBC News, ABC News, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine, and The Boston Globe. Mr. Yang's assignments have included the White House, Congress, the Middle East when he was based in Jerusalem, the U.S. South when he was based in Atlanta, the Western U.S. when he was based in Los Angeles, and the American Midwest when he was based in Chicago. Mr. Yang has covered national politics since the 1984 presidential election, traveling with presidential campaigns, reporting on congressional contests and attending presidential nominating conventions. He's been honored with three George Foster Peabody Awards, two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards, an Edward R. Murrow Award, and a national Emmy. He is a member of the Asian American Journalists Association, on whose national board he served, and NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists.

    At Wesleyan: Mr. Yang majored in government with a concentration in American politics and graduated cum laude. As an alumnus, he has spoken at fundraising events and has returned to campus to participate in panels. He received a Distinguished Alumni Award in 2020.

  • Donna S. Zilkha P'10, '10, '16

    Executive Director of College and International Services, Aristotle Circle

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Donna is currently executive director of College and International Services at Aristotle Circle, an education technology company. Donna started her career 35 years ago as a lawyer with Shearman & Sterling. When she moved to France and had children, she became involved in education policy, as a member of the board of education of the town of Neuilly and as head of a national public interest group for parents of students in public education. She sits on the board of a private school in New York City and is a member of the head’s advisory council at another. She graduated from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School and Columbia Law School.

    Donna is an expert on educational policy and U.S. school and college admissions, and has been invited to speak about college admissions before large student, government, and family groups in many countries around the world.

    At Wesleyan: Donna is the mother of three Wesleyan alumni: Alexis ’10, Rebecca ’10, and Laetitia ’16.

Alumni Volunteer Leaders

  • Suzanne Appel '02

    Managing Director, Vineyard Theatre

    New York

    Bio

    Professional History: Suzanne Appel's professional accomplishments as managing director of Off-Broadway's Vineyard Theatre have included negotiating an industry-first partnership with Audible to premiere and create two audio plays, adding seven new board members, completing the Vineyard's first strategic plan, and eliminating its accumulated deficit. She has had more than 15 years of arts leadership roles with an emphasis on business development, revenue generation, and producing the work of form-challenging artists. Previously she served as director of external affairs at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, where she led the fundraising and marketing teams to annual revenue generation of more than $7 million. Prior to her role at Hubbard Street, she served as managing director at Cutting Ball Theatre, where she nearly doubled the operating budget and built a two-month-plus operating reserve in four years. Her career began at Wesleyan, where she was an assistant director of the Annual Fund. Appel holds an MBA from Yale School of Management, and MFA in Theater Management from Yale School of Drama.

    At Wesleyan: Suzanne is thrilled to be taking on her newest volunteer role at Wesleyan as the chair of the Wesleyan Annual Fund. Previously she served as a class agent for over 18 years (since graduation!), and was honored to receive a Wesleyan Service Award at her 15th reunion.

  • David A. Hill '86

    President, DHill Professional Services, LLC

    Maryland

    Bio

    Professional History: David A. Hill is the president of DHill Professional Services, LLC, where he provides legal and consulting services to small businesses, non-profit entities, and individual clients. In a career spanning over twenty-nine years, David has been a senior executive in a Fortune 20 company, general counsel in a ten-person, start-up business in the healthcare field, and a partner in a national minority and women-owned law firm. David began his legal career as an associate with the law firm of Hogan & Hartson (now Hogan Lovells), where he was the lead counsel in Wilkins v. Maryland State Police, a landmark case that led to the end of the use of race-based drug courier profiles in the state of Maryland.

    Among his numerous civic engagements, David serves as a steward at the Kingdom Fellowship AME Church, serves on the board of the George B. Thomas Learning Academy (aka Saturday School), and serves on the Charter Review Commission in Montgomery County, Maryland. David received his BA with high honors from Wesleyan, and his JD cum laude from Harvard Law School.

    At Wesleyan: David was a CSS major, an RA, and a three-year starter on the football team. As an alum, David has served as a class agent for many years, an alumni-elected trustee, the Inaugural Chair of the Alumni of Color Council, on the President’s Council, and as chair of the Alumni Elected-Trustee Nominating Committee.