Board directors represent all alumni who are degree or certificate graduates of Metropolitan State program. Your Board now represents over 30,000 graduates! We welcome your suggestions for improving and enhancing our service and communications with you.
Alumni Association Board Directors
Pictured are (from back left) Basha Shaik, Tim Doherty, Jim Lukaszewski, Anna Gryczman, Jim Rogers, (from front left) Ochen Kaylan, Andrea Jenkins, Gini Sanchez and Nancy Wolf.
Alumni Board not pictured are Shirley Cain, Robbie Johnson, Akmed Khalifa, Caroline Lowe and Victoria Reinhardt.
President, Basha Shaik ('07) received his master's in business administration from Metropolitan State and was selected outstanding graduate student in the College of Management. He is now consulting on a variety of projects including films in India. His past employment includes work at Northwest Airlines, Target and Thrivent Financial. Before coming to the United States in 1999, Shaik earned several degrees in India, his native country.
Vice President, Tim Doherty ('94) is a business account executive with Dakota Electric Association where he establishes and maintains business partnerships and relationships with members. He is the single point of contact to address services issues of his assigned members, administers energy conservation programs, brings new program and service ideas to members, and evaluates new energy efficiency technologies for cost/benefit analysis. Prior to joining Dakota Electric, he held similar positions with CenterPoint Energy and Connexus Energy, and held technical engineering positions with Controls Engineering, Embassy Suites Hotels, Owens Services and the College of St. Catherine. He is a graduate of First College with course work in the College of Management.
Treasurer, Ochen Kaylan ('08) is the Design Lead for American Public Media. In the past, he has taught at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and worked as a conflict mediator for the Minnesota State Fair. Kaylan has received numerous design and advertising awards including: a Gold Pencil from The One Club; AIGA Minnesota Design Show selection; The Standard of Excellence Award from the Webawards; a Merit from HOW Interactive, a Unity Award for Reporting of Public Affairs/Social Issues, and a Special Citation from the Investigative Reporters and Editors Awards. His artwork has been shown at the San Francisco Art Institute, Alyce de Roulet Williamson Gallery, Austin Museum of Art, Walker Art Center, and the Minnesota Museum of American Art.
Secretary, Nancy Wolf ('07) was the outstanding School of Nursing graduate student and student commencement speaker in May 2007. Wolf is a registered nurse, and, in the last decade, has focused her career on quality improvement in the hospital setting. She is the director of evaluation and product safety at St. Francis Regional Medical Center in Shakopee.
Shirley M. Cain (’85), a political science graduate, is using her education in law to make important strides in Indian country. She has served as a tribal judge for Turtle Mountain and Red Lake tribal courts, and as an attorney and law instructor at Turtle Mountain Tribal and Community College. She has also worked on a housing project with the American Indian Community Development Corporation providing elders with housing options in South Minneapolis.
Anna Gryczman ('99, '10) was one of the first students to earn a Doctor of Nursing Practice from Metropolitan State. She also has a M.S. in Nursing from the University of Minnesota, and a B.S. in Nursing from Metropolitan State. She is on the nursing faculty of Century College, and also works at Gillette Children's Hospital providing care to pediatric trauma patients and their families. She is the recipient of several grants and awards including Metropolitan State's Outstanding Student Award and Academic Achievement Award.
Andrea Jenkins ('99) is a senior policy aide at the City of Minneapolis for 8th Ward Council Member Elizabeth Glidden. She is also the curator for the GLBT Reading series at Intermedia Arts and a program manager at the Program in Human Sexuality at the University of Minnesota. She is an accomplished poet and writer. Her work has been published in The Minneapolis Spokesman and Recorder, The Minneapolis Website, The Minneapolis Observer, among others. She created and presented the "Mission of the City" for the 2007 Minneapolis Mayor's State of the City Address. Jenkins earned a master's of science degree in community economic development at Southern New Hampshire University and a master of fine arts in creative writing at Hamline University.
Robbie Johnson ('03) is the president/consultant at Strategy Blueprints which is a consulting firm that helps companies in making sure that their tactical business plans map to their strategic business objectives, especially in the area of social networking/media. Johnson launched the Metropolitan State alumni LinkedIn group.
Akmed Khalifa (’08, ’10) has worked with young people in educational settings for many years. He has received two national awards from Junior Achievement for his work with young people, and they also selected him middle school teacher of the year for 2009–2010. He was recognized with a proclamation from the city of Pittsburgh for his work to increase inclusiveness in business for minority-owned firms throughout Pittsburgh and the United States. He has written several plays and a book, is a published poet and occasionally writes commentary for Minnesota Public Radio. He studied as an artist-in-residence at the Minneapolis Playwright’s Center and is a candidate for a master of fine arts degree in writing from Hamline University.
Caroline Lowe ('02) is the KSBY TV Santa Barbara County, CA, newsroom manager. Prior to her move to California in May 2011, she spent 34 years with WCCO TV, the majority of that time as a crime beat reporter. She is also a licensed Minnesota police officer, and she spent eight years as an officer with Minnesota State Fair Police. She has received numerous awards for her reporting, including: The Alfred I. DuPont Columbia Award for "Missing the Beat" in 1994, two Regional Emmy Awards in 1994, Sweepstakes Award from the Society of Professional Journalists in 1994, an Associated Press award and an UPI award. In 1986, Lowe was awarded the Minnesota Association of Crime Victims Media Attention Service Award, the first time that award was given to a member of the media. Lowe is the only reporter in Minnesota to have a police license and may be the only one in the country. She finished her master's degree in police leadership from the University of St. Thomas in December 2004. She is also a guest faculty member at the Center for Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement, where she teaches a class on the role of media and police. She served five years as a Metropolitan State community faculty instructor who taught a criminal justice and the news media class.
Jim Lukaszewski ('74) was the 2007 Alumnus of the Year. He is considered to be among the founders of modern American crisis communication management techniques, and is the author of several books and hundreds of articles on crisis management and leadership. He is profiled in the publication, Contemporary Legends of Public Relations. His monographs and newsletters are available at his Web site www.e911.com. He has been involved as an alumnus of Metropolitan State in many ways, and, three years ago, along with the former President Wilson Bradshaw and Professor Susan Rydell, he hosted the first gathering of Metropolitan State alumni and friends in New York City.
Victoria Reinhardt ('96, '99) is a Ramsey County Commissioner representing Maplewood, North St. Paul, the city of White Bear Lake and the Hillcrest area of Saint Paul (Ward 6 Precinct 12). Reinhardt received her B.A. and M.B.A. from Metropolitan State, and in 2007, her Doctorate in Public Administration from Hamline University.
Commissioner Reinhardt works on metro-wide issues such as Transportation, Housing and integration of Geographic Information Systems. In 1999, she testified before a Congressional Committee on Government Reform about how local units of government can work together more effectively. In 2000, she was given the Bruce F. Vento Distinguished Service Award by the Minnesota Coalition for the Homeless.
In 2001, Metropolitan State honored her as a "Woman of Vision and Courage." She was chosen the Alumna of the Year in 2005.
James Silas Rogers ('94) is the editor of New Hibernia Review: A Quarterly of Irish Studies and the managing director of the University of St. Thomas Center for Irish Studies. Most recently, he completed a two-year term as president of the American Conference for Irish Studies. His articles and reviews on Irish-American history and literature appear in a variety of scholarly journals, and he co-edited the book After the Flood: Irish America, 1945-1960, published in Ireland in 2009. Rogers has also published poetry and personal essays in national and international journals, and his chapbook of poems, Sundogs, was published by the University of Wisconsin Libraries in 2006. In March, 2011, he spoke at a Metropolitan State cultural events luncheon titled Ireland: The Creative Migrant.
Gini Sanchez ('05) is a French teacher at the Alliance Francaise of Minneapolis-St. Paul, where she promotes the use and appreciation of the French language and culture. Sanchez also works as a freelance interpreter and translator. Originally from France, she first came to the United States in 2000. After graduating from Metropolitan State with a bachelor of arts in individual studies (First College) with a concentration in business and intercultural studies, Sanchez completed a master of arts in Liberal Studies at Hamline University. Sanchez has volunteered as a homework tutor for after-schools programs, as a reader for people with vision loss, and as an usher at Orchestra Hall.