Alumni Updates – Spring 2018


Dr. Josh Bright (CHEM ’10) received the 2017 Arkansas Pharmacists Association distinguished young pharmacist award. Josh is director of pharmacy services at North Arkansas Regional Medical Center in Harrison.

Christopher W. Brown (ACCT ’10) received the 2017 Arkansas Society of Certified Public Accountants outstanding emerging CPA award.

Allyson Johnson (JOUR ’12) earned the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Accredited in Public Relations credential. She is an account executive at BLASTmedia in Indianapolis, Ind., and a member of the PRSA Hoosier Chapter Board of Directors.

Kaitlin Short (BIOL ’13) earned a Doctor of Optometry degree from the Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, Tenn.

Zach Kwok (IT ’14) is working as a fraud specialist at Walmart e-commerce in Bentonville.

Areana Lopez (ECED ’14) accepted a position as English as a second language teacher at Dardanelle Intermediate School.

Marissa McIsaac (M.S. PSY ’14) is the accessibility officer for Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, Canada.

Brittney Whatley (EAM ’15) was hired by BOLDplanning Inc. in Nashville, Tenn., for the position of emergency planner.

Melody Tabor (JOUR ’16) was promoted to news producer at KHBS/KHOG channels 40/29 in northwest Arkansas.

James Coney (BPS-ID ’17) completed his degree from Arkansas Tech at the age of 50 and is contemplating enrollment in the ATU Master of Science degree program in emergency management and homeland security.

Erica Goss (HA ’17) joined the North Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau staff as sales manager.

Lindsey Triplett (AGBU-PR ’17) was hired as a communications specialist at Farm Credit of Western Arkansas in Russellville.


Scott Hardin (JOUR ’00) was hired as director of communications for the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration.

Dr. Brandy Waters Hopkins (BIOL ’02) was selected pharmacy residency program director at CHI St. Vincent in Little Rock.

John Pennington (BIOL ’02) was appointed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson to the Arkansas Nutrient Water Quality Trading Advisory Panel through June 8, 2019.

Danielle Neeley Stewart (SPAN ’03 & M.L.A. COMM ’09) was named Arkansas Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages coordinator of the year for English for speakers of other languages programs.

Ashley Bryan (ART ’04) was named 2017 Arkansas Art Educators Association elementary art educator of the year. She teaches art at Sequoyah Elementary School in the Russellville School District.

Eliah Drinkwitz (HIST EDU ’04) helped North Carolina State University complete the 2017 football regular season with an 8-4 overall record, a 6-2 mark in Atlantic Coast Conference play and a second-place finish in the ACC Atlantic Division through his role as offensive coordinator.

Josh Ray (MUED ’06, M.Ed. EDLD ’10 & Ed.S. ’12) was named principal of East Pointe Elementary School in Greenwood. He and his wife, Sarah Clutts Ray (HIST EDU ’06 & M.Ed. COUN ’10) have two sons: Hudson and Harrison. Sarah is a counselor at Kimmons Junior High School in the Fort Smith School District.

Rachel Hobby (JOUR ’09) was hired as assistant director of Master of Business Administration programs in the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville.


Danny Spencer (HPE ’90) received the 2017 Cabot School District teacher with a heart award. He is head football coach at Cabot Junior High School North.

Frederic Simon (AGBU ’92) was re-appointed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson to the Arkansas Milk Stabilization Board through Sept. 12, 2022.

Tom Rowbotham (ECON ’93) was named vice president of supply chain for Uponor North America.

Kurt Schrock (HIST & SPAN ’93) was appointed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson to the board of directors for Northwest Technical Institute in Springdale through June 20, 2022.

Staci Carroll Lucius (PSY & RS ’94) was chosen as president of Mercy Health Physicians in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Jammy Turner (AGBU ’94) was appointed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson to serve on the Arkansas Agriculture Board through Aug. 15, 2021.

Cory Cox (HIST ’96) was selected as chief of staff for Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge.

Deana Infield (ACCT ’96) was appointed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson to the Arkansas State Board of Public Accountancy through Aug. 17, 2022.

Vanessa Thomas Jones (ELED ’96) was hired as superintendent for the Cotter School District.

Amy Turner-Mersiovsky (NURS ’98) earned a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree in administration with a specialization in nursing education from Samford University in May 2017. Amy is assistant professor of nursing at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton, Texas, and is secretary of the Texas League of Nursing.

Robert Post (ENGR ’98) joined Diversified Fluid Solutions LLC in Boise, Idaho, as controls engineering manager.

Bryan Fisher (NAT SCI ’99) was promoted to associate vice president for development at Arkansas Tech University.


Robert “Steve” Balloun (AGBU ’82) was re-appointed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson to the Arkansas Agriculture Board through Aug. 15, 2021.

Angie Newsom Hopkins (ACCT ’85) was appointed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson to the Arkansas Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission through June 30, 2023.

William S. Richardson (HIST ’88) was named 2017-18 Conway High School teacher of the year.


Dr. James L. Hillburn (BIOL ’74) retired as director of medical services at Lakeland Behavioral Health Services in Republic, Mo., on Sept. 15, 2017.

Nathan George (POL SCI ’76) was honored as the 2017 State Star for Arkansas during the 37th annual conference of America’s Small Business Development Centers in Nashville, Tenn.

Mark Green (MUED ’76) retired following 26 years on staff at International Paper in Fort Smith.


Robert Dale (MATH ’68) and Lawanda Dale (M.Ed. ’80) celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Aug. 4, 2017.