Daphyne Saunders Thomas, M.B.A.

Dayphne Saunders Thomas has been appointed to the board of directors to F&M Bank Corporation, parent company of Famers & Merchants Bank. She currently teaches classes at JMU for the Executive Leadership MBA and for the Master of Accounting programs. Learn more about her appointment here.

Carson Lonett, M.Ed.

Caron Lonett ('13, '15M) has been selected to serve as the Special Assistant to the Vice President for Student Affairs. Ms. Lonett will oversee Student Affairs operations, act as the Student Affairs liaison to various campus partners, and manage special projects for the division. Learn more about Carson here .

Kirk Moyers, M.Ed.

Kirk Moyers (‘08M) has been named to the State Advisory Committee on Culturally Relevant and Inclusive Education Practices. This newly formed committee within the Virginia Department of Education is intended to strengthen culturally relevant education practices and support anti-bias education and response in the Commonwealth.

Phil Satolli, M.A.T.

Phil Satolli (M.A.T., ’05) was recently named Virginia Agriculture in the Classroom 2021 Teacher of the Year. He received his Master’s in Early Childhood Education from James Madison University and has been teaching first grade at Lacey Spring Elementary School in Rockingham County for the last 16 years. Learn more about Phil's teaching here.

Kenneth F. Newbold Jr., Ph.D.

The Graduate School is very excited to share that alumni Kenneth Newbold has been selected as the new provost of Benedictine University! Kenneth is a graduate of our MPA and Strategic Leadership programs. During his time at JMU he ran the Office of Research and Scholarship and was able to raise an impressive $21 million of funding for external research. We are proud of Kenneth, and eager to see what he will accomplish. Read more about Kenneth here.

Blake Rogers

Blake Rogers (MPAS, 2018) has been named the Marketing Director and the Social Media Committee Chair for the Virginia Academy of Physician Assistants. Mr. Rogers has also been named a member of the Early Career PA Commission, and the Awards Committee Chair for the American Academy of Physician Assistants.  Blake is originally from the Harrisonburg area, but currently resides in South Boston, VA. He works as physician assistant for Pulmonary Associates of Southside

Ellie (Tansey) Graber

Ellie was the 2018 recipient of the National Institute on Drug Abuse Mentored Outreach Award.  She won the award for her project, “Every User Has a Story: Integrating Patient Stories and Leading Research to Expand OUD Treatments”. The website seeks to humanize people with substance use disorder by featuring personal testimonials, video content, and resources. Last year, Mrs. Graber presented a poster about the project at the annual meeting for the National Institute on Drug Abuse, and some of the content was featured at the 2019 annual meeting for the America Public Health Association in Philadelphia. For more information, visit Ellie’s website: https://www.everyuserhasastory.com/

Stephanie Holyfield, Ph.D.

Stephanie Holyfield, PhD, a 2000 graduate from JMU’s MA in History program is thriving in her work as a professor of history at Wesley College and receiving accolades from colleagues and students alike. Citing the two years at JMU were the “best two years of my life”, her love for JMU motivated her daughter to attend the graduate history program at JMU too.  Read more about her life here. August 2018

Patrick Harmon, M.S.

Pat Harmon came to JMU's M.S. in Biology program on the G.I. Bill after serving two tours of duty in the Middle East. Pat’s research with adviser Christine May explored the impacts of stream acidification on fish diversity in Shenandoah National Park. Results indicate limited recovery of fish diversity even after three decades following targeted amendments to the Clean Air Act. His findings indicate that water quality impacts can have persistent, negative impacts on fish diversity and underscore the importance of existing restrictions on emissions of acidifying compounds into the atmosphere and the need for further research and monitoring. The results of this study are timely and have important broader implications for society as environmental regulations are being actively reconsidered. A manuscript has been submitted to the journal of Soil, Air and Water Pollution and the research was funded by the Shenandoah National Park Trust and 4-VA collaborations with the University of Virginia.  August 2018

Alexa Mamatas, M.A.

2017 Art Education Master's Degree Graduate from the School of Studio Art, Design and Art History, Alexa Mamatas, was recently published as a guest author in the Virginia Art Education Association Magazine, Winter 2018, for her article entitled English Learner's in Virginia's Schools. Ms. Mamatas was the guest author of Pam Lawton, VAEA Research and Curriculum Board Representative, and Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University. Ms. Mamatas' article summarized her Master's Thesis research which surveyed Virginia's secondary art educators regarding best practices in working with English learners in their art classrooms. Her article shares her findings of the survey with the art teachers of Virginia.  August 2018

Kristen Harrod,M.Ed.

Kristen Harrod, a graduate of the JMU READ M.Ed. program in December of 2016, and Joy Myers an assistant professor in the Early, Elementary and Reading program in the College of Education co-authored the 2017 article Breaking down barriers: What we now know about supporting English language learners for the journal Reading in Virginia. They will also co-presented at the 2018 Virginia State Reading Association Annual Conference a session entitled, Counting down the minutes: Helping reluctant readers find the "right" texts. August 2018

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