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Upstate leaders selected to become Riley Diversity Fellows

Diversity Leaders Initiative award ceremony spring 2017

Forty-two leaders from the Upstate and surrounding area have been selected to participate in the Riley Institute at Furman’s Diversity Leaders Initiative (DLI) this spring.

“Though we are a diverse population, discovering ways in which differences can be a strength in our organizations is of utmost importance as we seek to grow and support a thriving economy and rich culture,” said Donald Gordon, executive director of the Riley Institute.

DLI class members are identified through a rigorous process including a nomination, application and interview. Individuals are selected to join the class based on their capacity to impact their organizations and communities.

Over the course of five months, participants will learn about diversity and inclusion “blind spots” and how to suspend assumptions. Participants will also work in small, cross-sector groups to respond to real issues and opportunities in their communities through service projects. The classes are facilitated by Juan Johnson, an independent consultant and former Coca-Cola vice president.

“DLI is unique among South Carolina’s leadership programs. In addition to the opportunity to develop new relationships and take part in positive action in their communities, participants gain deep knowledge of how to effectively manage and lead diverse workers, clients and constituents,” said Johnson.

In addition to the Upstate, DLI classes are selected annually in the Midlands and Lowcountry. Each class is crafted to reflect the diverse demographics in South Carolina.

“We now have more than 1,900 Riley Fellows statewide. Each new class further extends the reach and impact of leaders willing to work together to make South Carolina a better place to live and work for all its residents,” said Gordon.

DLI graduates become Riley Fellows, members of a powerful, cross-sector, statewide leadership network that includes CEOs of corporations, mayors, city and county council members, legislators, school superintendents, pastors and rabbis, non-profit heads, chamber of commerce directors, and community leaders.

The full roster of Riley Fellows is available online at riley.furman.edu. The leaders selected for the 25th Upstate DLI class are:

John Barker
Assistant Vice President
Furman University
Greenville

Jerry Blassingame
Executive Director
Soteria Community Development Corporation
Greenville

Luis Caicedo
Branch Manager
New American Funding
Greenville

Daja Dial
Marketing & Communications Manager
Oconee Economic Alliance
Seneca

Dennis Dunn
Chief Information Officer
Michelin North America
Greenville

Jennifer Dusso
Chief Operating Officer
Bon Secours Medical Group
Greenville

Anthony Esquivel
Owner
COPA Indoor Soccer
Greenville

Jill Fuson
Director, Center for Critical Issues
The Riley Institute at Furman
Greenville

Mike Gatchell
Senior Executive Director, The Furman Advantage Network
Furman University
Greenville

Chris Giacomaro
Director of Executive Operations
United Way of Greenville County
Greenville

Neal Guthrie
Department Manager, Quality and Quality Systems
BMW Manufacturing
Greer

Steve Hairston
Public Policy and Advocacy Director
Public Education Partners
Greenville

Sally Hammond
Chief Communications Officer
Spartanburg School District 7
Spartanburg

John Humphries
President and General Manager
WYFF 4
Greenville

Paul Hyde
Education Writer
The Greenville News
Greenville

Jamie Inman
Chief Mission Advancement Officer
YMCA of Greenville
Greenville

Steve Jahries
Vice President, Purchasing – Americas
Michelin North America
Greenville

Cynthia King
Associate Professor/Chair
Furman University
Greenville

Tanisha Latimer
Dean of Enrollment Services
Greenville Technical College
Greenville

Ivory Mathews
Executive Director
Greenville Housing Authority
Greenville

Susan McLarty
Mission Outreach Coordinator
Westminster Presbyterian Church
Greenville

Andrea Meade
President
Raise Craze
Greer

Paul Newhouse
President
Union Medical Center
Union

Anna Padaetz
Facility Personnel Manager
Michelin North America
Spartanburg

Jennifer Parker
Director, Child Protection Training Center; Professor of Psychology
USC Upstate
Spartanburg

Cory Patterson
Attorney
Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P. A.
Greenville

Trung Phan
Manager Production Waste Water Treatment, Process, Material
BMW Manufacturing
Greer

Joseph Provenzano
Manager
BMW Manufacturing
Greer

Susan Riordan
Community Volunteer
Greenville

Felicia Sanders
Rubber Preparation Production Manager
Michelin North America
Greenville

Bill Schmidt
Vice President of Development for the Health Sciences Center
Greenville Health System
Greenville

Bubba Self
President/CEO
Greenwood Communities and Resorts, Inc.
Greenwood

Tim Self
Executive Director
AnMed Health Foundation
Anderson

Caroline Sexton
Executive Director
Hub City Farmers Market
Spartanburg

Thessa Smith
Director, Economic Development
McCormick County
McCormick

Nikki Stafford
Administrator, Children’s Hospital and Neurosciences
Greenville Health System
Greenville

Ed Stein
Upstate Regional President
Pinnacle Financial Partners
Greenville

Nathan Stock
Principal
CRD Connect, LLC
Travelers Rest

Anton Thomas
Regional Technical Partner
Michelin North America
Greenville

Lamont Thomas
Lieutenant
Greenville City Police
Greenville

Samantha Wallace
Publisher
Edible Upcountry
Greenville

Mike Winiski
Interim Executive Director of Community-Engaged Learning
Furman University
Greenville

For more information about the Riley Institute and its programs, visit riley.furman.edu.

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