University of Pittsburgh

Alumni News

Alumni Spotlight: New Book to Help Startups Get Traction

San Francisco entrepreneur Justin Mares (BSBA '12) is the co-author of "Traction: A Startup Guide to Getting Customers," a new book based on interviews with more than 40 well-known company founders including those at Wikipedia, Reddit, Kayak, Evernote, and more.

Alumni Spotlight: ESB Bank CEO Honored with Pittsburgh Female Executive Award

Charlotte A. Zuschlag (MBA ’81), president and CEO of ESB Financial Corporation and its subsidiary ESB Bank, is a recipient of the 2014 BusinessWomen First Award by the Pittsburgh Business Times, given to the top female executives in western Pennsylvania.

Alumni Spotlight: Appointment to President’s Commission Latest in His Legacy to Service

For 30 years, Shekar Narasimhan (MBA '75) has used his business background to mitigate the effects of brutal poverty in Appalachia and his native India. Now he is serving on the President's Advisory Commission on Asian American and Pacific Islanders.

Alumni Spotlight: His Charity Lets You Literally Fight for a Cure

Andrew Myerson (CBA '05) is the co-founder of Haymakers for Hope, a nonprofit that gives people the chance to fight back against cancer by participating in high-end boxing matches that raise tens of thousands of dollars.

Pitt Black MBA Network Expands its Mentoring, Recruiting Reach

The Pitt Black MBA network will focus its efforts in 2014 on mentoring programs for diversity students, the recruitment of high-quality MBA candidates, and fundraising for the organization's student scholarship fund.

Alumni Spotlight: Fighting Crime at the Microscopic Level

Cybergenetics President and Co-Founder Ria David (EMBA ’08) is leading a Pittsburgh-based firm whose proprietary DNA analysis is helping to solve difficult homicide cases and to identify victim remains in mass disasters.

Katz-Educated Executives Offer Strategies for Success

The recipients of the 2014 Distinguished Alumni Award of the Katz School shared their leadership lessons during the Strategies for Success lecture. Collectively, the three individuals had more than 75 years of management experience.

2013 Thought Leader John Heller

The successful CEO of a major federal contracting firm, John Heller (MBA '90), the 2013 Thought Leader in Business Speaker of the Katz School, focused his presentation on the three R's: risk-taking, responsibility, and rewards.

Alumni Spotlight: Engineering/MBA Grad Named Pennsylvania Young Engineer of Year

Anthony Fitzpatrick (MBA/ENGR ’10, ENGR ’03) is the recipient of Pennsylvania's 2013 Young Engineer of the Year award. He has served in the U.S. Navy Civil Engineering Corps and is a project manager with Michael Baker Jr. Inc.

Alumni Spotlight: Channeling Sports Into 100 Lessons for Managers

James Earle (MBA '95) is the author of "100 Yards of Success: Leadership Lessons from College Football." He draws on his experiences in the University of Pittsburgh's football program to relate practical lessons for managers.

Couple Run Major Thailand Renewables Co.

Somphote Ahunai (MBA '92) and his wife Blanca Shulan Huang (MBA '92) are heading up a thriving energy company in Thailand. Their company is a manufacturer of bio-diesel fuels and is building new large-scale solar power plants and wind farms.

The International Business Consultant

Ranel T. Wijesinha completes business development assignments in the geopolitically sensitive locales of Afghanistan and the post-Soviet states of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and the Kyrgyz Republic, among others.

Pitt Black MBA Network is Thriving

The Pitt Black MBA Network is expanding its programs to support diversity students at the Katz Graduate School of Business. The group travels with Katz students to national recruiting conferences and is also expanding its scholarship fund, mentoring programs, and recruiting programs.

Insurance Consultant Dives the Seven Seas

Jon Persky (MBA '83) is the owner of a highly successful insurance consulting firm. He's also an accomplished diver who visits the world's most exotic locations as much as he can.

2012 Thought Leader: Lessons in Starbucks' Transformation

Starbucks executive Jeffery Hansberry (MBA '89, A&S '86) spoke to Katz students about global consumer products strategy as the 2013 Thought Leaders in Business speaker.

Open Enrollment for Engineering Workshop in August

Business professionals and engineers are invited to the Pneumatic Conveying Workshop on Pitt's campus from August 13-15. The workshop covers this important engineering process, taught by a Pitt engineering professor.

Disaster Recovery Part of Alumna's Skill Set

Claudia Maddox (MBA '71) spent more than 25 years in telecommunications, surviving industry upheaval and the Y2K drama. She is one of the first female African American students to graduate from Katz.

Alumni Panel Offers Strategies for Success

Put a retired executive from the electrical power industry, a former executive/current consultant in telecommunications, and the dean of a business school together to talk about successful business strategies and many different viewpoints emerge.

Spring 2013 Alumni Magazine Out

Get your coffee table ready: the spring 2013 Pitt Business alumni magazine is in the mail. The edition features alumni with high-powered positions in fashion and innovation -- and much, much more.

Inaugural Katz Invitational Held

The inaugural Katz Invitational Case Competition drew MBA teams from Carnegie Mellon (Tepper), Penn State (Smeal), Case Western Reserve (Weatherhead), Buffalo, and University of Pittsburgh (Katz).

Giants of Project Management

Two Katz chaired professors, along with an alumnus, were credited as among the most influential researchers in project management in a paper published in the International Journal of Managing Projects in Business.

April 12: 49th Annual Business Alumni Awards

Tickets are available for the April 12 Business Alumni Association Awards. Now in its 49th year, the ceremony is an outstanding opportunity to network, enjoy good food and drink, and support your alma mater.

Katz Creates Official LinkedIn page

Katz has expanded its social media presence to create an official Katz LinkedIn page. The "company" page is a nice complement to the existing group pages run by the school's MBA and CBA alumni, which are outstanding. Be sure to follow Katz on LinkedIn.

Alumni Mentoring Program for MBAs

Mentoring is a powerful force in business. It enables the transfer of knowledge and creates valuable networking connections. Katz MBA students have access to one-on-one alumni mentoring through a new program.

Career Management Seeking More Alumni Involvement

A highly engaged and active alumni community is critical to the continued prosperity of the Katz Graduate School of Business. The Career Management Center has made increasing alumni involvement a priority in 2013.

Alumni Corner: The Right Fit at Lucky Brand

The fingerprints of Brant Hawk are on the latest designs of Lucky Brand clothing. The CBA graduate lives in Los Angeles, where he uses his business expertise to author the fashions of today and tomorrow.

Meeting Buyers at the Decision Point

Shopper marketing answers the holy grail of consumer goods questions: who is buying a product, where, and why? Megan Hennigan (MBA '11) explores what triggers people's paths to purchase for the global food company H.J. Heinz Co.

Education Reformer Targets Indonesian Youth

Inspiration comes in many forms. Antarina S.F. Amir drew upon her business background to grow a school system in her native Indonesia. Her schools don't follow rigid curriculums and favor active learning over memorization.

Exploring the Genetics of Consumption

On the surface, people's buying habits can seem unpredictable, irrational, and elusive. But there are patterns behind everything. Powerful data mining tools are making new discoveries into consumer behavior by analyzing digital data.

Windows of Opportunities for Homeless Veterans

Jared Souder (MBA '10) draws upon his experiences as an Iraq war veteran to serve as executive director of Veterans Place of Washington Boulevard, a Pittsburgh nonprofit that provides temporary housing to homeless veterans. His job is far from easy, but Souder wouldn't have it any other way.

Riding to the Top Full Throttle

Toby O'Brien Jr. (MBA '91) is the owner of Hot Metal Harley-Davidson in West Mifflin, the largest dealership in the Pittsburgh market. He didn't get there just because he loves bikes - it took a solid business foundation, too.

It's Not Cell Spying: From Concept to Start-Up

Cell phone users are getting younger every year, with elementary school kids increasingly going mobile. Julie Dobson (MBA '79) is the creator of a smartphone application that makes monitoring the phone an opportunity for good parenting.

Private Equity Investor a Passionate Entrepreneur

The entrepreneur is a unique animal, with guts and passion and no fear of risk. For Joe Campolo (MBA '93), food business entrepreneurs are the chief focus of his own highly successful private equity firm in Chicago.

Lucky To Be Alive, She Never Gave Up

Jennifer Burroughs (MBA '12) was the victim of a violent pedestrian accident where she was hit by the driver of a stolen car. She fought hard to recover from her injuries and is among the Katz Class of 2012.

Eat'n Park Chair Named Pitt Legacy Laureate

James Broadhurst (MBA '66) is the chairman of Eat'n Park Hospitality Group, a diversified food service company that handles everything from Smiley cookies to upscale catering at the Carnegie museums of Pittsburgh. Broadhurst is a 2011 University of Pittsburgh Legacy Laureate.

Fulbright Scholar Researches India's Alternative Fuels

Bioengineer John Round (MBA, MS-ENGR '11) is working in India during the next nine months under a Fulbright scholarship. He is analyzing the developing nation's biofuels industry.