Calder Ehermann stands at the podium, smiling at Juan Johnson

Calder D. Ehrmann Scholarship

To bring forth new perspectives and enrich class conversations, every Diversity Leaders Initiative class is built to be reflective of South Carolina’s demographics, making scholarships critical to the success of the program. Honoring the legacy of the late Calder Ehrmann, who played an instrumental role in launching DLI and was a highly-regarded diversity champion in the community, the Calder D. Ehrmann Diversity Leaders Fund provides scholarships that ensure representatives of nonprofit, faith-based, and underrepresented groups in the Upstate can participate in the program.

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About Calder Ehrmann

Calder Ehrmann was Chief Diversity Officer for Michelin in 2002 when he heard Juan Johnson speak about a diversity leadership program he had implemented in Atlanta. Convinced that the Upstate needed such a program, he and Jim Foster, another Michelin executive, met with Riley Institute executive director Don Gordon, and Benny Walker, then vice president for enrollment at Furman, to talk about how to move forward. The idea took root.

Calder led the work of carefully crafting the mix of participants of the two annual Upstate classes. His passion for equity was infectious and helped make the state a better place to work and live. Calder passed away in 2015 but his legacy lives on.

Scholarship Recipients

Spring 2020

Chris Ballard, Major General (Retired), US Army

Adrick Ceasar, Director of Operations and Rehabilitation, Elite Integrated Therapy Centers

Leslie Latimer, Executive Director, Palmetto Shared Services Alliance

Chris Manley, President/CEO & CEO of Engenius, Rebuild Upstate

Ramon Nieves-Lugo, Principal, UniComm Media Group

(l-r) Chris Ballard, Leslie Latimer, Glenda Ehrmann, Ramon Nieves-Lugo, Adrick Ceasar. Not pictured: Chris Manley.

Fall 2019

Becky Callaham, Executive Director, Safe Harbor, Greenville

Damon Qualls, Principal, Monaview Elementary School, Greenville County Schools

Paige Stephenson, President/CEO, United Way of the Piedmont, Spartanburg

A group shot of fall 2019 scholarship recipients standing next to Juan Johnson

(l-r) Juan Johnson, Paige Stephenson, Glenda Ehrmann, Becky Callaham and Jacob Ehrmann. Not pictured: Damon Qualls.

Spring 2019

Kenneth Dean, Pastor, Mount Zion Baptist Church

John Lattimore, Senior Director of Project Management, Habitat for Humanity of Greenville County

Shawn Reid, Fiscal and Program Operations Specialist, Duscha Management, LLC

Feliccia Smith, Professor of Business, North Greenville University

Sally Wills, Executive Director, LiveWell

A group shot of spring 2019 scholarship recipients standing next to Juan Johnson

(l-r) Juan Johnson, John Lattimore, Sally Wills, Feliccia Smith and Glenda Ehrmann. Not pictured: Kenneth Dean and Shawn Reid.

Fall 2018

Osa Benson, Attorney; Director, Legal Department, SYNNEX Corporation

Miriam Dicks, CEO, 180 Management Group

Brann Fowler, Assistant Solicitor, Greenville County Solicitor’s Office

Rimes McElveen, Executive Director, Mere Christianity Forum

Group photo of fall 2018 scholarship recipients

(l-r) Osa Benson, Glenda Ehrmann, Miriam Dicks and Rimes McElveen. Not pictured: Brann Fowler.

Spring 2018

Jerry Blassingame, Executive Director, Soteria Community Development Corporation

Anthony Esquivel, Owner, COPA Indoor Soccer

Steve Hairston, Public Policy and Advocacy Director, Public Education Partners

Caroline Sexton, Executive Director, Hub City Farmers Market

Thessa Smith, Director, Economic Development

Group photo of spring 2018 scholarship recipients

(l-r): Jerry Blassingame, Steve Hairston, Glenda Ehrmann and Caroline Sexton. Not pictured: Anthony Esquivel and Thessa Smith.


Fall 2017

Alecia Brewster, GoodGuides Program Manager, Goodwill Industries of the Upstate/Midlands

Anthony Dicks, Senior Pastor, Mt. Zion Church

Tracie Frese, Executive Director, Upstate International

Jeri Kleckley, Director of Volunteer Engagement, United Way of Greenville County

(l-r): Anthony Dicks, Tracie Frese, Jeri Kleckley and Alecia Brewster

Spring 2017

Mario deCarvalho, Vice President, Carolina Zoom Studios and Video Productions

Ethan Friddle, Director of Programs & Operations, United Ministries

LaShauna Harrison, Chief Executive Officer, United Way of Oconee County

Chirinjev Peterson, Proprietor, American Education and Testing Services

Jonathan Shanin, Executive Director, Aid Joy

Nicole Wood, Vice President of Resource Development, United Way of Greenville County

(l-r): Ethan Friddle, LaShauna Harrison, Juan Johnson, Glenda Ehrmann Mario deCarvalho, Nicole Wood, Chirinjev Peterson, Jonathan Shanin

Fall 2016

Jane Robelot Decarvalho, Vice President, Carolina Zoom Studios and Video Productions

JoKeitha Seabrook, Community Engagement Manager, United Way of Greenville County

Lamont Sullivan, Chief Executive Officer, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Upstate

(l-r): Juan Johnson, Jane Robelot Decarvalho, JoKeitha Seabrook, Lamont Sullivan, Glenda Ehrmann, Calder Ehrmann III, and Jacob Ehrmann

Spring 2016

Lillie Lewis, Associate Professor of Education, Southern Wesleyan University

Keith McDaniel, Pastor, Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church

Ann Wright, Executive Director Upstate SC/COO, SC Region American Red Cross

(l-r): Jacob Ehrmann, Glenda Ehrmann, Lillie Lewis, Keith McDaniel, Ann Wright and Juan Johnson

Fall 2015

Chrissie Cofield, Assistant Chief, Laurens Police Department

Cornelius Huff, Mayor, City of Inman

Rodney Johnson, Principal, Lead Academy Public Charter School

Diane McNeil, VP Finance/CFO, Urban League of the Upstate

Kimaka Nichols-Graham, Managing Attorney and Education Unit Head

(l-r): Cornelius Huff, Chrissie Cofield, Jacob Ehrmann, Glenda Ehrmann, Rodney Johnson and Kimaka Nichols-Graham. Not pictured: Diane McNeil.