Browsing: Alumni Spotlight

Enrolling at Stony Brook University as a shy student from upstate New York, Janki Patel ’17 could have never envisioned the leader she would become. “Coming from a small high school, I didn’t have the academic opportunities that many of my friends had and I already felt I was at a disadvantage as a freshman,” she said. But as a member of the University Scholars program, which encourages stewardship and leadership in addition to academic dedication, Janki made a smooth adjustment to campus life and her confidence grew by leaps and bounds. Without prior research experience, Janki joined International Genetically…

The Stony Brook University Alumni Association Board of Directors has appointed three new board members and installed Bedel Saget ’88 as the Board president at their June meeting. The new board members — appointed to three-year terms — include Jaime Moore ’88, Neil Butterklee JD ’80, ’82, and Shahnilla Jamal ’00. Bedel Saget ’88 Sports Graphics/Multimedia Editor at The New York Times Bedel Saget is an Emmy nominated producer, award winning photographer and videographer, innovative thinker and dynamic leader with more than 28 years experience as a journalist developing award winning content for The New York Times and news outlets…

Big dreams often begin as little actions. When she was a child, Irene (Rena) Thomas ’17 and her sisters would stage “pretend” newscasts just for fun. As the Syosset, New York native got older, she became obsessed with reading Seventeen magazine cover to cover. “After that, I wanted to work for a magazine,” she said. “Then that dream kind of faded out and I entered college undecided.” Thinking she was attending a general orientation, Rena stumbled upon the orientation for the School of Journalism, and by the spring semester of her freshman year she decided to make journalism her major.…

Janet Bernier, JD ’86, principal at BDO USA, LLP and leader for the northeast region’s State and Local Tax Practice received the Distinguished Alumna Award during the 2017 Department of Political Science Convocation on May 19. “What a time to enter the professional arena,” Bernier said to the graduates. She used her speech to reflect on her career while noting how time and experience can provide an interesting rearview mirror. “(Time) provides an ever-changing lens for you to perceive and interpret the world through,” she said, “Everything I’ve learned that has made me successful today goes back to the professors…

Dawn Zier ’86 had one thing on her mind when she became President and CEO of Nutrisystem in 2012: Fix it fast. With stocks dropping from 70 to 7 after five straight years of declining revenues and profits, Zier came into the job knowing the company needed a culture change. She brought in new management, enhanced the company’s integrated ecommerce marketing capabilities and introduced new product lines. The result? Nutrisystem resurgence. From $205 million to a $1.5 billion market cap, the company has seen its stock value increase more than sixfold over the past four years. Now, Zier is ranked…

The Stony Brook Department of Athletics is proud to announce the Stony Brook Athletics Rita and Kurt Eppenstein Hall of Fame Class of 2017, which includes five outstanding individuals who distinguished themselves during their time on campus. The class of five inductees includes Dave Alexander (former head coach, Swimming and Diving 1979-2012); Alyssa Breres (Struzenberg) ’10 (Softball); Travis Jankowski (Baseball); Earl Keith ’79 (Men’s Basketball); and Lucy Oliver (Van Dalen) ’11, ’12 (Cross Country/Track & Field). The Class of 2017 will be inducted on October 13, 2017 as part of the weekend’s homecoming celebration. “Each of our five inductees has…

Twenty-one years after earning his own Stony Brook degree, Jonathan Oringer ‘96, founder, chairman and CEO of Shutterstock, the influential New York-based global tech company, came home to where he said it all began. The tech entrepreneur returned to the University for our 57th annual commencement on May 19 to receive an honorary Doctor of Science degree and to inspire our newest class of graduates. “You are young. It gets harder and harder to take calculated risks,” he told the nearly 7,000 graduating seniors. “You will fail sometimes. You will learn things about yourself that will scare and inspire you simultaneously. Taking calculated…

Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. and Fotis Sotiropoulos, Dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences, announce the induction of Myung Oh, PhD into the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences distinguished alumni Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame was established to recognize and honor alumni who have demonstrated exceptional success in their field, and serves as an inspiration to past and future innovators. Hall of Fame recipients are recognized for sustained and significant leadership in engineering, technology, entrepreneurship or innovation throughout their professional lives. Dr. Oh, a 1972 graduate with a PhD in electrical…

In Rio de Janiero, gymnast Simone Biles earned more gold medals in a single Olympics than any other female gymnast in American history. She dazzled the world in each of her events and Bedel Saget ’88, multimedia and graphics editor at The New York Times, was there to capture every move of her stunning performances. Now, his coverage — The Fine Line: Simone Biles Gymnastics — is being recognized at the World Press Festival this month in Amsterdam. “I’m very honored to accept such a prestigious award on behalf of the talented team of journalists, videographers and designers that contributed…

The New York Press Association recognized several Stony Brook University School of Journalism alumni through its Better Newspaper Contest, presented to journalists who have gone “above and beyond, and for their outstanding achievements.” Since 1930, these prestigious awards have been judged on a statewide basis with thousands of entries each year. 1st Place Winners Jen Nuzzo, Coverage of Crime/Politics/Court and Coverage of Education, The News-Review, Riverhead, 2009 Michelle Trauring, Feature Story, The Southampton Press-Eastern Edition, 2010 Rachel Young, In-Depth Reporting, The Suffolk Times, 2009 2nd Place Winners Desiree Keegan, Sports Feature, The Village Times Herald, Setauket 2012 Rachel Young, Feature Story,…

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