Profiles

  • Vanderbilt University

    Richard Batey, BD’58, PhD’61: Sepphoris Scholar

    The research of New Testament scholar Richard Batey, BD'58, PhD'61, into the ancient city of Sepphoris in Galilee broadens ideas about Jesus and gives a new perspective for understanding the Gospels. Read More

    Jun 8, 2022

  • Vanderbilt University

    Joyce Searcy, MS’78: Making Libraries Accessible

    Joyce Searcy grew up in segregated Yazoo City, Mississippi, where going to the public library would have meant entering through its back door.  Today she is the first Black person to serve as chair of the Nashville Public Library board. Read More

    Apr 22, 2022

  • Vanderbilt University

    Michael Brasseur, BS’97: From Vandy Commodore to Actual Commodore

    In his long U.S. Navy career, Michael Brasseur, BS'97, has had numerous command postings, including his latest as a full commodore. Based in Bahrain, he commands Task Force 59, the Navy’s first unmanned task force dedicated to securing the waters around the Arabian Peninsula. He directs a team dedicated to rapidly harnessing the power of unmanned and artificial intelligence integration to promote the free flow of commerce in the area. Read More

    Apr 19, 2022

  • Vanderbilt University

    Dr. Erika Dillard, BS’01: Biomedical Entrepreneur

    Dr. Erika Dillard, BS’01, received her M.D./Ph.D. from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, then founded Memphis-based PopCheck Technologies Inc., which uses artificial intelligence-driven monitoring technology to help prevent clots in surgical patients recovering at home. Read More

    Apr 5, 2022

  • Vanderbilt University

    Trent Shores, BA’00: In Service to His Heritage

    Trent Shores, BA'00, who closed out his public career with a 2017 presidential appointment as U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Oklahoma--the country’s only Native American in such a role--has been nationally recognized for his efforts to develop and implement strategic responses to Native American policy.   Read More

    Dec 17, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    C.J. Sentell, PhD’15: Food for Thought

    C.J. Sentell, PhD’15, a philosopher and food-focused social entrepreneur, was appointed CEO of the Nashville Food Project in July to continue to grow the organization which was founded on this simple but powerful mission: to feed neighbors in need. Read More

    Nov 18, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Michele Ivey Frazier, MBA’93, takes a swing at bringing MLB to Nashville

    Michele Ivey Frazier, MBA'93, joined Music City Baseball as director of operations and leader of the diversity, equity and inclusion efforts for the organization in April. Her work is centered around the company’s goal to be diverse, equitable and inclusive in its efforts to bring a Major League Baseball team to Nashville. Read More

    Nov 18, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Vanessa K. Valdés, MA’02, MA’03, PhD’07, and Nathan Dize, MA’20, PhD’21: Collaborative Vision

    Vanessa K. Valdés and Nathan H. Dize, Vanderbilt graduates in Spanish and Portuguese and French and Italian, respectively, teamed up on a project in the field of Afro-Latinx studies--a translation of Makenzy Orcel’s heartbreaking novel set in Haiti, Les Immortelles, published by SUNY Press. Read More

    Aug 24, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Aaron Berndtson, BS’06 and Zach Blitz, BS’06: They’ve Got Game

    The success of Aaron Berndtson and Zach Blitz contradicts every parent who has warned their teenager that they can’t make a living playing video games. The 2006 graduates, whose friendship was forged over Madden NFL and NCAA Football, now hold leadership positions on the cutting edge of the video-game industry. Read More

    Aug 19, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Kimberly Robinson, BE’89: A New Space Age

    Kimberly Robinson, CEO and executive director of the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, believes that the nation is on the brink of another exciting Space Age, similar to the 1960s. Read More

    Aug 19, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Cathy Bender, BS’82: Change Maker

    The first Black woman to receive an athletic scholarship from Vanderbilt, Bender was a member of the nascent women’s basketball program. Today she is the co-chairperson of the Black and Gold Club, Vanderbilt’s alumni association for former student-athletes. Read More

    Jul 23, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Up for the Challenge: Dixon McDonald, BA’11, completes world’s toughest rowing race in 3,000-mile trek across the Atlantic Ocean

    Dixon McDonald, BA'11, and teammates Jimmy Carroll, Todd Hooper and Jono Mawson rowed approximately 3,000 miles from the Canary Islands, just off the coast of Africa, to the Caribbean nation of Antigua in a boat only 28 feet long and a little more than 3 feet wide last December for the 2020 Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. Read More

    Jun 23, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Gene Back, BMus’06, BAFTA Breakthrough Talent

    Last November, alumnus Gene Back’s growing list of accomplishments caught the attention of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. The organization, which promotes the art of motion pictures on both sides of the Atlantic, selected him as a Breakthrough Talent. Read More

    Apr 22, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Christopher Tuff, BS’03, Millennial Connections

    Alumnus Christopher Tuff, author of bestseller 'The Millennial Whisperer,' says this generation wants to matter to their employers, and they want their work to matter too. Understanding this dynamic results in business tactics that cost zero dollars and provide big paybacks. Read More

    Apr 22, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Thomas G. Burton, MA’58, PhD’66, Serpents and Stories

    A profile of Graduate School alumnus Thomas G. Burton, whose book 'The Serpent and the Spirit' was the basis for the recent HBO documentary 'Alabama Snake.' Read More

    Apr 22, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Betsega Bekele, MEd’14, National Storyteller

    Betsega Bekele, MEd'14, helps lead American Portrait, a multiplatform, national storytelling project tied to PBS’ 50th anniversary celebration. The digital-first initiative that launched online in January 2020 is centered on this question: What does it really mean to be an American today? Read More

    Mar 11, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Janie Kaiser, BS’15, Education Entrepreneur

    Education Concern Center Nepal, or ECC, was cofounded in 2017 by Janie Kaiser, BS'15, who serves as its managing director. The center uses a four-part program—teacher training, classroom materials, improved infrastructure and teacher support—to expand educational resources in Nepal's remote schools. Read More

    Feb 25, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Janina Jeff, MS’12, PhD’12, Finding Lost Identities

    The first African American to earn a doctorate in human genetics from Vanderbilt, Janina Jeff, MS'12, PhD'12, launched an award-winning podcast called "In Those Genes" that translates cutting-edge genetic research into everyday language that uncovers the lost identities of African-descended Americans through the lens of Black culture. Read More

    Feb 25, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Bob Rolfe, EMBA’88, Community Investor

    Lessons learned in the executive MBA program at Owen have helped Bob Rolfe, EMBA'88, in business and as commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. Read More

    Feb 19, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Dr. Jill Moses, MD’91, and Annie Moon, MSN’03, lead the fight against COVID-19 in the Navajo Nation

    Two Vanderbilt alumnae—Dr. Jill Moses, MD’91, and Annie Moon, MSN’03—are helping lead the fight against COVID-19 in the Navajo Nation, the country’s largest Native American reservation. Read More

    Feb 18, 2021