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Riley Institute selects new class of DLI fellows

Rily DLI brochure imageThe Riley Institute’s Diversity Leaders Initiative has selected its 20th Class of Fellows. The 45 incoming class members will join more than 1,500 Riley Fellows from across the state to participate in DLI.

“DLI and the Riley Fellows have matured into a potent force to help move South Carolina forward,” says Dr. Don Gordon, executive director of the Riley Institute. “The variety of unique experiences and perspectives that this class brings to the table is so important to the meaningful dialogue and work of DLI,” Gordon says. He says that although the class is varied in background and experience, “They have a common ability to affect change through leadership positions in their organizations and community.”

Class members meet over the course of five months in a format driven by timely, relevant case studies and other experiential learning tools designed to maximize interactions and productive relationships among participants. DLI is expertly 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 increasingly diverse workers, clients and constituents,” says Johnson.

As part of the program, leaders also work in cross-sector groups to respond to real issues and opportunities in their communities through capstone service projects.

Participants, who reflect South Carolina’s demographics and represent the corporate, nonprofit, education, faith-based and government sectors, are chosen by nomination and application. “The frames of reference and skills that DLI graduates share provide a remarkable platform for working together to help South Carolina compete in the 21st century,” Gordon says.

The Riley Fellows for Upstate Class 20 are:

George Allwes
VP Retail
Goodwill Industries
Greenville, S.C.

Shafiq Anwar
Chief Information Officer
Michelin North America
Greenville, S.C.

Paul Butler
Senior Vice President
Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System
Spartanburg, S.C.

Brenda Byrd
Assistant Superintendent for School Leadership
Greenville County Schools
Greenville, S.C.

Kelly Callahan
Vice President & Chief Operating Officer
United Way Association of South Carolina
Columbia, S.C.

Anna Cass
Clinical Assistant Professor
Greenville Health System/University of South Carolina School of Medicine Greenville
Greenville, S.C.

Troy Chisolm
Administrator, Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine
Greenville Health System
Greenville, S.C.

Pam Christopher
President & CEO
Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce
Anderson, S.C.

Chrissie Cofield
Assistant Chief
Laurens Police Department
Laurens, S.C.

Neal Collins
Member; Attorney
SC House of Representatives; Carolina Law & Mediation, LLC
Easley, S.C.

Pam Davis
Director, Bridges to a Brighter Future
Furman University
Greenville, S.C.

Gary Eichelberger
Associate Priest for Faith Development & Worship
Christ Church Episcopal
Greenville, S.C.

Richard Everly
Vice President Paint
BMW Manufacturing LLC
Greer, S.C.

Jessica Fisher
Senior Corporate Counsel
Michelin North America
Greenville, S.C.

Stephanie Griffin
Finance Project Manager
BMW Manufacturing LLC
Greenville, S.C.

Paul Grosskopf
Vice President, R & D
Michelin North America
Greenville, S.C.

Linda Hannon
Manager, Government and Community Relations
Duke Energy
Greenville, S.C.

Scott Henderson
Professor of Education
Furman University
Greenville, S.C.

Jo Anne Hennigan
Vice President
Michelin North America
Greenville, S.C.

Gary Hill
SC Circuit Judge
SC Judicial Department
Greenville, S.C.

Cornelius Huff
City of Inman
Inman, S.C.

Neil Jamerson
Assistant Vice President for Student Development
Furman University
Greenville, S.C.

Rodney Johnson
Lead Academy Public Charter School
Greenville, S.C.

Leonard Kupersmith
Christ Church Episcopal School
Greenville, S.C.

Chad Lawson
Communications Manager
Spartanburg Water
Spartanburg, S.C.

Wes Lehrer
Spartanburg Market President
Spartanburg, S.C.

Becky Mann
Director of Executive Communications and Public Relations
Greenville Technical College
Greenville, S.C.

Derek McGowan
Program Manager STEM, Generations & Higher Education
Lockheed Martin
Greer, S.C.

Ricky McGrady
Section Manager
BMW Manufacturing LLC
Greer, S.C.

Diane McNeil
VP Finance/CFO
Urban League of the Upstate, Inc.
Greenville, S.C.

Curt McPhail
Greenlab Strategies
Spartanburg, S.C.

Jordana Megonigal
Business Black Box
Greenville, S.C.

Kenneth Miller
Chief of Police
City of Greenville
Greenville, S.C.

Ty Miller
Lieutenant over Administration
Greenville County Sheriff’s Office
Greenville, S.C.

Terri Newsom
Greenville Health System
Greenville, S.C.

Kimaka Nichols-Graham
Managing Attorney and Education Unit Head
South Carolina Legal Services
Greenville, S.C.

Josh Patterson
Oakland Elementary School
Spartanburg District Two
Inman, S.C.

Steven Prior
Director, Supplier Diversity and Small Business Development
Michelin North America
Greenville, S.C.

Jim Shew
Director, National Accounts
BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
Greenville, S.C.

Susi Smith
Executive Director
Communities in Schools of Greenville
Greenville, S.C.

Rob Stevens
Senior Manager
Elliott Davis Decosimo, LLC
Greenville, S.C.

Chris Tolbert
Career Manager
Michelin North America
Greenville, S.C.

Johannes Trauth
Vice President, Human Resources
BMW Manufacturing
Greer, S.C.

Charles Weathers
The Weathers Group
Columbia, S.C.

Hubert Yarborough
Vice President of Development
Propel HR
Greenville, S.C.

Learn more about the Riley Institute at Furman’s Diversity Leaders Initiative. Or contact Megan Dodgens, Manager of Diversity Leadership Programs at (864) 294-3253, or

Last updated August 19, 2015
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Clinton Colmenares
News & Media Relations Director