Alumni Accolades November 2014

Elise and Ben

November 4 was a big night for Elise Stefanik (2002) in New York and Ben Sasse (1990) in Nebraska – Elise became the youngest woman ever to be elected to Congress and Ben is now the first Scholar to be voted into the U.S. Senate!

Neha Gupta

Neha Gupta (2014) became the first American to receive the International Children’s Peace Prize! Neha was honored for her work through Empower Orphans, an organization she began when 9 years old. The mission of Empower Orphans is to elevate the well being of orphaned and underprivileged children and empower them to succeed, by helping them help themselves. Desmond Tutu presented Neha with her award in The Hague, Netherlands on the award’s 10th anniversary. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

Adan Gonzalez

Adan Gonzalez (2011) was named Coors Light’s Lider of the Year, receiving a $25,000 grant to implement a Latino leadership project for AVANCE-Dallas, a community-based, nonprofit organization that provides support and education services to at-risk, economically impoverished families. Watch a video of Adan’s recent Tedx talk here.

Jourdan Ubrach

Jourdan Urbach (2009), Co-founder of Ocho, a video-sharing app received $1.65 million in funding from Shark Tank’s Mark Cuban, along with other investors. Ocho allows users to add voiceovers and control videos’ volume among other features.

Mehul Patel

Mehul Patel (1994) was named to The Urban Land 40 Under 40, representing the best young land use professionals from around the globe.

Camille Borders

Camille Borders (2014) was named a 2014 Young Woman of Distinction, the highest honor in Girl Scouting.

Christopher Gray

Christopher Gray (2010), the Drexel undergrad founder of scholarship mobile app Scholly, was named on BET’s list of “Young Men on the Brink of Making It Big.” Gray just won Drexel’s annual incubator competition and will pitch on ABC’s “Shark Tank” later this season.

Corey Rennell

Core Foods, founded by CEO Corey Rennell (2003) , was named in the Top 100 List of the Bay Area’s Fastest Growing Companies.

Angela Harrell

Angela Harrell (1991) has been named the head of the ING Voya Foundation and Office of Corporate Social Responsibility. She began her new role on October 20.

Justin Pasquariello

Justin Pasquariello (1997) is featured in a Huffington Post article highlighting the importance of role models to children in the foster care system. Justin grew up in foster care and went on to start Adoption and Foster Care Mentoring organization.

Kathryn Minshew

Kathryn Minshew (2004), CEO and co-founder of The Muse, was listed in Glamour Magazine’s “35 Women Under 35 Who Are Changing the Tech Industry”.



Alumni Connections November 2014

St. Louis

The Foundation wrapped up a fall filled with receptions in St. Louis.

Carolyn and Julia Li

While visiting St. Louis, Alumni Relations Manager Carolyn Norton and her nieces enjoyed dinner at LuLu Seafood, owned by Julia Li (2006) and her family.

Celeste, Anna, and Nilofer

Celeste Bottorff, VP, Global Health and Well-being at The Coca-Cola Company visited Purdue as one of the school’s “Old Masters,” ten successful and outstanding individuals who come to campus for the purpose of sharing ideas and experiences with the student body. Nilofer Rajpurkar (2013, pictured right) was part of the committee welcoming the group, and asked to be paired with Celeste. Anna Ye (2012, pictured left) attended a dinner during the event, Dining with the Dignitaries, where all three were able to connect.

Ryan and ChiaRyan speaking to Chia's class

Chia-Jung Tsay (2000) invited Ryan McCannell (1989), Division Chief for Conflict, Peacebuilding and Governance at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Bureau for Africa in Washington, DC, to speak to her negotiations class at Wharton Business School.

Natalia, Walter and Madison

Married Scholars Natalia (2004) and Walter Menjivar (2005) attended the NAACP Freedom Fund Dinner in Stamford, CT as guests of Coca-Cola. They are pictured with Madison Bedard, Coca-Cola Public Affairs in Connecticut.

Kim and Carolyn in Uganda

Kim Rash (1990) and Alumni Relations Manager Carolyn Norton traveled to Uganda on a mission trip as part of an organization called 410 Bridge. They are pictured with two of their new Ugandan friends Sarah and Faith.

Julie Gehrki

The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation staff enjoyed a visit from Julie Gehrki (1998), Senior Director at the Walmart Foundation.

Groovy Coca-Cola Halloween

The Coca-Cola Company welcomed Coca-Cola Scholars from local colleges to their “Groovy Coca-Cola” Halloween bash at Company headquarters on October 31.  Pictured are Foundation President J. Mark Davis, and 2012 Scholars Tina Ho, Stephen Fowler and Preston Culbertson.


Alumni Accolades October 2014

Forbes Group

5 Coca-Cola Scholars are included in Forbes 30 Under 30 List!

Jenni Newbury on the Meredith Viera Show

Jenni Newbury (2006), Executive Director and founder of PALS programs was featured on the Meredith Vieira Show this month!  PALS Programs creates immersive experiences where young adults with Down syndrome and their peers have fun, grow as individuals, and develop transformative friendships.  Their programs take place in the form of weeklong sleep-away camps, weekend Adventures and an initiative called The Congratulations Project.  This project provides our campers the opportunity to write letters to new parents of babies with Down syndrome. During the show segment, Jenni reunited a camper and the baby to whom the letter was written.

Tyrha Lindsey

Tyrha Lindsey (1990) has been named President of the PhD Project’s Marketing Doctoral Students Association. The PhD Project was established by The KPMG Foundation in 1994 to increase workplace diversity by increasing the diversity of business school faculty who encourage, mentor, support and enhance the preparation of tomorrow’s leaders.

A junior at Pacific University, Jordan ‘Bruno’ Gegenhuber (2012) was recently awarded an $8,000 scholarship from the NASA Oregon Space Grant Consortium! He also recently completed a Summer-long Residential Science Research Internship with the NASA Space Life Sciences Program at NASA Ames Research Center in Sunnyvale, California.

Alumni Connections October 2014

Receptions continued as Foundation staff visited Scholars in the Northeast, Pittsburgh, and California!

Boston Reception

Boston reception on October 6.

Providence Reception

Providence reception on October 7.

New Haven

New Haven reception on October 8.

New York

New York reception on October 9.

Pittsburgh Reception

Pittsburgh reception on October 15.

Palo Alto Reception

Palo Alto reception on October 20.

San Francisco Reception

San Francisco reception on October 21.

AAB Retreat

The Alumni Advisory Board traveled to Atlanta to brainstorm and further develop alumni initiatives with our staff October 3-5. It was a wonderful opportunity to connect and discuss how to best serve the alumni network!

Tyrha and Nicole

Nicole Thompson (2010) and Tyrha Lindsey (1990) sat next to each other at the 2013 Leadership Summit for Scholar alumni and immediately bonded over their shared interest in TV and film. The two kept in touch, and Tyrha helped Nicole apply to and receive an internship in Hollywood at NBC with the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences – the same internship she had after graduating college! Congratulations to Nicole, and thank you to Tyrha for serving as her mentor.

Sarah and Jennifer

Coca-Cola Scholar Sarah Perkins (2007) participated in the launch of Coca-Cola Troops for Fitness in Boston (pictured with Coca-Cola Public Affairs & Communications Director Jennifer Cruickshank). Thanks to $3 million in funding from the Coca-Cola Foundation, the Boston Parks and Recreation Department will now be able to offer free classes instructed by military veterans at parks and community centers citywide. Veterans will lead exercise programs including boot camps, golf clinics, cardio and strength training classes, running groups, family yoga, zumba, hiking workouts, and more.

Scholars at Atlanta Wedding

2004 Scholars (from left to right) Quinn Rallins, Travers Johnson, Geraldine Pierre, Chris Neely and Bryan Nails came together for Chris’s Atlanta wedding in September.

Bowdoin Scholars

Bowdoin College Scholars (left to right) Nicholas Mitch (2014), Marc Berson (2014), Wylie Mao (2014), and Justin Pearson (2013) got together on a Friday night for pizza and Coca-Cola!

Carrie and Jason in San Francisco

Jason Pate (2005) and Carrie Regan (1989) met at Jason’s restaurant, Tava Indian Kitchen, in San Francisco.

Stanford Scholars


Scholars at Stanford University came together for pizza and Coca-Cola and thoroughly enjoyed recycling their bottles afterward.

MA Health Council Gala

Stesha Doku (2004), Sandy Lor (2010), Nicole Black (2010) and Chaarushena Deb (2014) attended the Massachusetts Health Council Award Gala with Coca-Cola Public Affairs & Communications Director Jennifer Cruickshank last week.

Abby Martin in Iceland

Abby Martin (2007) spent the summer in Iceland and took this photo with her favorite brand!

Megan and Jason Harlow

Megan Barber (CCSF) ran into Jason Harlow (2006) in the Atlanta airport last month.

Mark and Jeremy O'Brien

The Foundation staff enjoyed a visit from Jeremy O’Brien (2012).

Alumni Accolades September 2014

2009 Scholar Lauren Kuhn, Miss Massachusetts, was fourth runner-up and the winner of a $10,000 scholarship in the Miss America Pageant on September 14th. She follows in the footsteps of many other Coca-Cola Scholars who have served as state representatives in Miss America Pageants over the years, including 2004 Miss America, Ericka Dunlap, a 2000 Scholar.

Megan Rosenberger sings the National Anthem at Monday Night Football’s Lions vs. Giants game in Michigan.
2013 Scholar Megan Rosenberger sang the National Anthem as part of the Naval Academy Women’s Glee Club for Monday Night Football’s Lions vs. Giants game in Michigan. The Club also recorded a 9/11 tribute for the NFL that played before the Steelers vs. Ravens game.

Kavita #InspiredbyWomen Video

2002 Scholar Kavita Shukla is featured in a video that is part of an Inspired by Women campaign, which follows the journeys of six extraordinary women, discovering how they each turn inspiration into action. Kavita’s invention, FreshPaper, extends the life of food 2-4 times longer than usual and is revolutionizing food storage and freshness in 35 countries. We were fortunate to have Kavita speak to Scholar alumni about her invention at our 2013 Leadership Summit!

Alumni Connections September 2014

Our regional fall receptions have begun! So far, the Scholars Foundation staff has visited with over 125 alumni in Miami, Indianapolis, Cincinnati and Atlanta.

Scholar Reception in Miami

Miami reception on September 10.

Cincinnati Reception

Indianapolis reception on September 17.

Indianapolis Reception

Cincinnati reception on September 18.

Atlanta Reception

Atlanta reception at The Coca-Cola Company headquarters on September 24.

Columbia Coke Scholars Pizza Party

Coca-Cola Scholars Maya Patel (2013), Ricky Chiang (2013), Taylor Fogg (2013), Jennifer Mahan (2011) and Peter Kim (2011) got together for pizza and Coke at Columbia University.

George Washington University

2013 Scholars Eric Beeler and Tony Ibrahim enjoyed the “Share a Coke” kiosk at George Washington University.

University of Florida Pizza Dinner

Nadia Kemal (2012), Jillian Roberts (2011), Alexa Jacobson (2012), Marco Corda (2013), Lourianne Apollon (2011) and Lauren Leslie (2013) got together at the University of Florida.

Scholars in New York City

Scholars Jack McKinstry (2000) and Veronica Jung (1993) met up after work in New York City.

U.S. Naval Academy Pizza Dinner

Megan Rosenburger (2013), Bob Leddy (2013) and Ryan Kolden (2011) caught up over pizza at the U.S. Naval Academy.

New Alumni Advisory Board Members

The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation Alumni Advisory Board (“A.A.B.”) was formed in 2006 by alumni Scholars to help support the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation’s mission and goals. Currently 15 alumni serve on the A.A.B. on a three year rotation. This year they voted on four new members, Jolene Loetscher (1997), Jorge Casimiro (1994), Kevin Chung (1990) and Lindsay Hyde (2000). Let us introduce you to them.

jolene_AABJolene Loetscher, a 1997 Coca-Cola Scholar, grew up among the farm fields of Nebraska and now calls South Dakota home. She graduated as the top broadcast journalism student from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL and received her MBA in Global Executive Leadership from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Starting at age 19, she worked as a television reporter/anchor for KTIV-TV (NBC) in Sioux City, IA and KELO-TV (CBS) in Sioux Falls, receiving regional and national awards, including the Edward R. Murrow Award, for her writing and live reporting. Her work appeared on CNN, MSNBC, CSPAN and The Weather Channel. Jolene moved into public relations, working in media relations at Sanford Health, handling media requests from across the globe as the organization received more than $400 million in donations.

An entrepreneur at heart, Jolene and her husband, Nate Burdine, started DooGooders®, a dog doo removal and dog waste DNA testing business, in 2007. They also run Mud Mile Communications, a marketing and video production company. In 2013, she received three Regional Emmys for her work, along with recognition from the International Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts and two Telly awards.

In 2011, Jolene first spoke publicly about being sexually abused by a family friend. She founded Selfspiration, an organization which holds day camps for children who have been sexually abused. And in 2014, the state of South Dakota passed Jolene’s Law, to create a task force to look at child sexual abuse in the state. Jolene and her husband live in Sioux Falls with their pugs, Mayhem Awesome and Moonshine Jerry.

Casimiro_AABJorge Casimiro, a 1994 Coke Scholar, is Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of NIKE’s Global Community Impact team and Vice President of the NIKE Foundation. In this role, Jorge provides leadership, stewardship and operational excellence to advance NIKE’s global portfolio of community activities to deliver greater and more sustained impact worldwide.

Before joining NIKE in January 2013, Jorge was Group Director, International Public Affairs at The Coca‐Cola Company and co‐chair of a global food and nonalcoholic beverage industry group. He held positions of increasing responsibility across Public Affairs, Communications and Operations, including two international assignments in Latin America and serving as Chief of Staff to the former Chairman & CEO, over the course of almost 12 years at Coca‐Cola.

Jorge began his professional career in higher education. A graduate of Brown University, Jorge earned his master’s degree in public policy from Rutgers University.

He and his family, including two of the sweetest kids you’ve ever seen, reside in Portland.

Chung_AABKevin F. Chung, a 1990 Coca-Cola Scholar, is the Director, Corporate Compliance and Employment Law, Legal and Business Affairs at Sony Computer Entertainment America (aka PlayStation).  He is responsible for ethics and compliance programs, trainings, and policies, as well as employment law matters.  He also assists with government and regulatory affairs.  Prior to PlayStation, Kevin worked as an attorney at two national law firms based in Northern California.

Kevin frequently speaks on legal topics including employment law, corporate compliance, and social media. Throughout his career, he has been an ardent supporter of pro bono legal services, volunteering hours to indigent clients and non-profit organizations. Kevin is an active member of the Asian American and in-house legal communities. He currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Labor and Employment Committee of the National Asian American Bar Association.  Kevin also serves as Co-Chair of the Labor and Employment Committee and Co-Chair of the Pro Bono Committee of the S.F. Bay Area Chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel.

Kevin enjoys working with students of all ages. His past and ongoing community activities include coaching high school mock trial teams, mentoring high school and college students and coaching youth basketball and Little League baseball. He is an active volunteer with the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation and currently serves as a Mentor for the Earl Woods Scholar Program, part of the Tiger Woods Foundation.

Since 2003, Kevin has been the Official Scorekeeper for the Stanford University men’s basketball program.

Kevin graduated from Stanford University (B.A., with Honors and Distinction; M.A.) and the UCLA School of Law.

Lindsay Hyde_AABLindsay Hyde, a 2000 Coca-Cola Scholar, is an avid entrepreneur, most recently launching The BarkStop, a company that establishes dog daycare centers inside corporate office buildings.

Lindsay graduated from Harvard Business School in 2014. While in school, she served as a research associate to Professor Janet Kraus on a study of women entrepreneurs who had risen $25M or more in venture capital financing. Additionally, she served as the team lead for 21DTLV, an apprenticeship initiative launched in Downtown Las Vegas in partnership with Zappos founder Tony Hsieh and The Downtown Project. Finally, she served as the team co-lead for the Harvard IdeaCorps team, which partnered MBA students with innovative start-up companies helping to grow the New Orleans economy.

Prior to starting business school, Lindsay was the President and Founder of Strong Women, Strong Girls, a nationally recognized mentoring program that fosters high aspirations among girls and provides them with the skills they need for success. Headquartered in Boston, Strong Women, Strong Girls impacted over 10,000 constituents and grew to provide mentoring services in 5 cities globally under Lindsay’s direction. Her leadership of Strong Women, Strong Girls has been recognized in Seventeen Magazine, Glamour Magazine, and Harvard Magazine.

Lindsay is originally from Miami, Florida and currently resides in Boston.

Alumni Accolades August 2014

_MG_6518Kelsey Tainsh (2008) spoke recently at The Coca-Cola Company’s Atlanta headquarters on persevering through cancer and more! Check out this article on Coca-Cola’s Journey site about her speech and story.

Simone Ridgeway (2008) received her MS in biotechnology at the University of Alabama Birmingham and was highlighted on the school’s website. She will be working at Lilly Pharmaceuticals in Indianapolis.

Rachel Melson Blanks (2003) was selected as one of thirty All-Star Teachers by People Magazine with Target and Major League Baseball!

Alumni Connections August 2014

CCSF had a busy summer with lots of visits from our Scholars!  We had the pleasure of catching up with:

Mpaza Kapembwa (2011) and Alison Mansfield (2013)

ali hartman and familyAli Hartman (2001) with her husband and son

Maddie Dill (2014)

Julia and AmeetAmeet Kallarackal (2014)

visit from nadiaNadia Kemal (2012)

Anna Jo Julian Ranni and StephenAnna Jo Cowan (2011), Julian Plowden (2010), Stephen Fowler (2012) and Ranni Tewfik (2005)

clara TsaoClara Tsao (2009) and her mother

Grant meansGrant Means (2012)

Mehul visitMehul Patel (1994)

Trent and business partnersTrent Bigelow (2004)

Heather and girlsHeather Tell (1992) and her daughters

Alumni Celebrations August 2014

alice and family2Alice Park (1999) and her husband Kyu welcomed their daughter Elise Tsui Tin Park on July 26th!  She joins big brother Lyon, and her Coca-Cola Scholars family can’t wait to meet her!

Tyrha LindseyTyrha Lindsey (1990) married Sidney Warren on August 16th.  They received this shout out in the New York Times!