Johnson Alumni Board
The Johnson Alumni Board was established in spring 2008 to provide the leadership for fostering a close connection between Johnson and its alumni. Their primary focus is to strengthen the class officer and regional clubs programs and to serve as a collective voice for our alumni. They are responsible for evaluating the current regional club program activities and class officer structure, as well as partnering with the Alumni Affairs office in developing the strategic annual plan. In order to help strengthen all constituencies, the Johnson Alumni Board focuses on "practice sharing" among alumni groups by convening annual meetings of constituencies to share success stories and challenges. The board serves in an advisory capacity to Johnson's dean, staff, and Advisory Council.
Johnson Alumni Board Members
Brett Blumenthal '95, MBA '04,
- Brett Blumenthal '95, MBA '04 President (Boston, Mass.)
- Ryan Folger '98, MBA '04 Vice President (Chicago, Ill.)
- Shari Aser, MBA '10
- Sarah Brubacher, MBA '99
- Deb Garber, MBA '99 (Boise, ID)
- Geoffrey Lim, MBA '00 (Hong Kong)
- Ryan McCamy, MBA '12
- Matthew Orton, MBA '11
- Timothy Takacs, MBA '99 (London)
- Michael Walsh, MBA '75 (Chicago, Ill.)
is co-founder and CEO of Be Healthy, Inc. - a wellness event and promotion company whose mission is to create a healthier America, one city at a time. Be Healthy, Inc. holds unique events, such as Be Healthy Boston, that educate, inspire and empower members of local communities to live and maintain healthy lifestyles. Each event joins community members together with local and national wellness professionals, businesses, and non-profits, in order to drive community level change by making healthy living accessible to all.
Blumenthal is also founder of Sheer Balance and the Healthy Road Warrior, which provide information, classes, and seminars, along with wellness coaching to educate and motivate individuals interested in living a healthy lifestyle. She has developed a proprietary wellness assessment to determine where an individual can make lifestyle changes for better health. Blumenthal writes for several online media companies, and is regularly featured on popular sites including: Yahoo!, Divine Caroline and Intent. She is the author of Get Real and STOP Dieting!
, a #1 Bestseller on both Amazon and BarnesandNoble.com, and is currently writing her second book, due to be released in January, 2012. Blumenthal has appeared on NBC and CBS, and is a regular contributor on Better Connecticut on WFSB - CBS, Hartford.
Blumenthal is certified by WELCOA (Wellness Counsel of America) and has received numerous awards including: Shine from Yahoo!'s "Woman of the Year" for her influential blogging; Divine Caroline's Love this Site! award in the Body and Soul Category for Sheer Balance; Intent's Best Healthy Living Site Award; and Healthy Heart from Nature Made.Prior to pursuing her passion in wellness, Blumenthal was an associate with Gensler, a global design firm, and was responsible for leading strategic design for wellness, spa and lifestyle clients. Prior to Gensler, she spent over seven years in management consulting with PricewaterhouseCoopers and Deloitte Consulting, and three years in hospitality design with Brennan Beer Gorman. Blumenthal earned both her bachelor's degree in architecture and MBA at Cornell University.
Ryan Folger '98, MBA '04
, is construction manager with developer Centrum Properties for the Roosevelt Collection Project, a 1.7 million square foot, $400 million urban development project in Chicago's South Loop. Prior to this position, he ran two developments as project manager for Toll Brothers Inc.: the Executives at Hawthorn Woods Country Club, and Bloomingdale Walk. His career has been focused on finding ways to develop real estate more intelligently by building diverse, mixed-usage, and tightly integrated communities to combat urban sprawl. Folger is an active member of both the American Institute of Architects and the Urban Land Institute.
A licensed architect in Pennsylvania, Folger worked for both Gensler and Kling Lindquist (now Kling Stubbins) on various projects for Merck Pharmaceuticals, the United States Postal Service, Northrup Grumman, and T. Rowe Price before obtaining his MBA in 2004. In 2006, he became president of Johnson Alumni Association of Chicago. Folger and his wife, Alexis, are working on a complete renovation of their historic, circa-1890s home in their spare time.
Shari Aser, MBA '10, is the Sales Execution Business Unit Executive for the East IMT. Her responsibilities include designing and recommending strategies and sales plays around the SEIs for the East IMT. In her prior role, Shari was the Global Sales Integration Executive for Coremetrics recently acquired by IBM. She was responsible for the overall success of the integration of Coremetrics’ global sales organization into the IBM Software Group. In leading this effort, Shari helped Coremetrics leverage IBM for global reach and market strength.
Previously, Shari was the IBM Software Sales Manager for Financial Markets and Insurance. She managed a team of sales reps covering financial services firms including: Goldman Sachs, Metlife, AIG, and NY Stock Exchange. Prior to this role, Shari was the Client Exec for Goldman Sachs and Client Rep for The Bank of New York.
Shari joined IBM as a Data Management Sales Specialist after graduating from Bucknell University in 1998 with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. She serves on the Bucknell Alumni Board of Directors. Previously, Shari served on the Bucknell Engineering Alumni Board of Directors where she was the Admissions Committee Chair and led the Women in Engineering Initiative for the University. In addition, she is an Alumni Interviewer for the office of admissions, an active volunteer with annual giving, and the recipient of the Young Alumni Award.
She is also the Training Manager for The Junior League of the City of New York. Shari received the Outstanding Volunteer of the Year award from the Junior League in March of this year. Shari is a member of The Women’s Bond Club where she received the Rising Star award, and is President of the Fairfield County Delta Gamma Alumni Association.
Sarah Brubacher, MBA '99, director of top seller account management at eBay (a company she joined five years ago), has held a number of alumni leadership positions since finishing business school.
In 1999, when she moved to Boston to work for Andersen Consulting (now Accenture), she was asked to take on the position of president of Johnson Club of Boston (1999-2003). During her tenure, the club established an advisory board, a schedule of regular, monthly happy hours, and a quarterly speaker series. While at Accenture, Brubacher acted as sponsor and organizer for the Cornell University recruiting team - ensuring that Johnson students were in the consideration set for hiring both interns and full-time positions. She was also an active participant in Johnson recruiting - interviewing and recommending potential candidates for Admissions.
In 2003, Brubacher moved to San Francisco to join a partnership between Accenture and eBay called Connection-to-eBay (2003-2004). Once out West, Brubacher was asked to become president of Johnson Club of the Bay Area (2003-2007). Again, she established an advisory board, happy hours, and (occasional) speaker series - as she had done in Boston - and she also began running the popular Bay Area Predictions dinner, now in its 15th year. She stepped down from that position in 2007.
Brubacher first came to Ithaca in 1994 as part of an undergraduate recruiting team for her then employer, Chubb amp;& Son. She agreed to sit on the Cornell University recruiting team as long as the Chubb team agreed to eat at a restaurant Brubacher had heard was in Ithaca - the Moosewood. She was so impressed with the campus, the students she interviewed, and the restaurant, that when she applied to business school, Cornell was at the top of her list.
Once at Cornell, Brubacher threw herself into both the coursework and the myriad opportunities to become involved at Johnson. Brubacher was elected to the Student-Faculty Council (student government), and was asked to run the Club Council. She joined many intramural sports teams - volleyball, indoor and outdoor soccer, inner tube water polo, and of course, the Frozen Assets Ice Hockey team. Inspired by the a capella groups of the undergraduate university, Brubacher "re-founded" a defunct business school a capella singing group called the "Sound Investments." She also convinced the editor of Cornell Business, the school newspaper, that the paper needed a food writer, a post she held both years at Cornell. In her second year, Brubacher was awarded one of five Alfred J. Fried Fellowships for her service to the school. Brubacher was elected president of her class in 1999 - a position she still holds today.
Deb (King) Garber, MBA ’99, is a World Wide Strategic Planner for HPs LaserJet business located in Boise, Idaho and has been an enthusiastic supporter of Cornell.
Upon graduation from Johnson in 1999 Deb started her career in Brand Management as an Assistant Brand Manager on Centrum Vitamins at Wyeth Healthcare (now Pfizer) in New Jersey. She also started interviewing students FOR and recruiting students FROM Johnson something she has continued to do throughout her career. After working on the Centrum brand and in New Product Development for Wyeth she was recruited by Gallo Winery to move to California and manage their Beverage Business. During her tenure there, she worked with the Gallo HR Team to begin recruiting MBAs from Cornell for their marketing department. The work paid off and Gallo now has a Johnson Grad within their ranks. After four years of managing various businesses within the portfolio it was time for a change. In 2005 she moved to Boise, Idaho with her husband Joe Garber’99 and started work as a Brands Strategy Lead at Albertsons, a grocery retailer. She developed advertising and communication strategies to build brand identity, improve customer experience and maintain loyalty. When the company was acquired in 2007 and relocated to Minnesota she accepted an offer from HP’s LaserJet Division to stay and Boise and manage future product development. Deb has leveraged her Brand Management experience to hold a variety of roles within HP in Future Product Management, Current Business Management and Strategic Planning.
Beyond her work as a HP recruiter at Johnson, Deb has also served as an Alumni Admissions Ambassador and 2nd Year MBA Mentor. She enjoys working with applicants excited about getting accepted to Johnson as well as graduating students ready to use their new founds skils. In 2004 she was asked to serve as her Class VP of Communications, a position she still holds today. Deb enjoys the role as it allows her constant contact with classmates and helps keep the ties to Cornell stong – keeping the Class of 1999 one of the most active.
Deb attended undergrad just a finger lake away from Cornell at William-Smith College. Her experiences in the region and love of Ithaca put Cornell on the top of her list when applying to Business School. While at Cornell Deb served as Student Association Co-Chair, member of the Marketing Club, participated in the first ever Brand Immersion and played defence for the Frozen Assets Women’s Hockey Team. She is active in her community and serves as the PR Chairman for the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) Pioneer Chapter, is 2nd year in the Leadership Boise Program sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce, an HP Business Advocate Team Lead & HP IPG Ambassador. In her spare time she loves to travel and spend time on the slopes with her husband, Joe and daughter Sydney.
Geoffrey Lim, MBA '00, is director of CLSA Capital Partners, the alternative investment management arm of CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets, based in Hong Kong. Previously, Lim was managing director and chief representative of Founder China Partners, a Beijing-based private equity firm sponsored by the Founder Group, one of China's largest state-owned conglomerates. Prior to that, he was vice president of Lombard Investments and was based in Hong Kong, where he helped to manage the firm's investments in China and other Asian markets. Lim started his career in private equity with Cowen & Company's Private Equity Group in New York. He received his BA from Hunter College, City University of New York, and his MBA from Johnson at Cornell University.
Ryan McCamy, MBA '12, is a current student in the Cornell-Queen’s Executive MBA program. Ryan graduated from the University of Illinois in 1994 with a degree in Computer Engineering. During his time at Illinois, he served as a member of the Student Alumni Association for two years on campus and also spent one year abroad studying at the University of Wales.
Ryan is currently a senior manager at SAIC, leading a large software development project in Kansas City, Missouri. He began his career at Andersen Consulting (now Accenture) and served a variety of telecommunications and high-tech clients including AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint, providing business process and IT consulting services. He has also served as a Project Director for a digital advertising agency, providing online marketing solutions for clients such as Microsoft, the American Cancer Society, and Turner Broadcasting’s European operation. He has also served with volunteer organizations such as the United Way Young Leaders’ Society and as a volunteer Board member for United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Kansas City.
In his spare time, Ryan enjoys traveling, running, golf, and spending time with his wife, Lisa, and two daughters Grace and Zoe.
Matthew Orton, MBA '11, is a second-year student where he is focusing on Capital Markets and Asset Management. Matthew graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Vanderbilt University in 2009 with a double-major in economics and political science. While attending Vanderbilt, Matthew co-founded the Vanderbilt Political Review – a non-partisan student political research journal – with contributions from Al Gore and Tennessee governor Phil Bredesen. He also served as a student liaison to the Vanderbilt Board of Trust and as the president of the International Relations Organization, the largest student organization on campus.
Although Matthew came to Johnson directly from Vanderbilt, he spent time working on Wall Street in various investment management capacities at Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, and Goldman Sachs. Specifically, Matthew focused on quantitative investing and while working at Goldman Sachs Asset Management he developed currency models for a new sustainability fund, GS Sustain, and helped win over $50 million in new business.
As a current student at Johnson, Matthew was elected to the Student Council as a general representative and in this capacity also acts as a student representative to the Advisory Council. Matthew is also a Johnson Board Fellow, the communication director of Admissions Ambassadors, which coordinates communication between current and prospective students, and a Portfolio Manager for the Cayuga Fund. Matthew spent his summer as an Associate at BNP Paribas in equity derivative sales & trading.
Timothy Takacs, MBA '99, works in London for a private equity and advisory firm focused on emerging and high-growth markets; current activities involve deals in the Gulf, Ukraine and South Africa. He was previously with Accenture's Strategy Practice in London, where he helped establish the Accenture startup incubation centre during the dot-com boom. He also developed the financial structure and strategy for several "transformational outsourcing" deals. Before that, Takacs worked for Accenture's Strategy Practice in Boston and New York for four years. Accenture encouraged him to apply to Johnson and he was accepted into the first class of Park Leadership Fellows. For his summer internship he worked for Hewlett Packard's New Business Ventures group. Takacs has been active in Johnson's alumni club in the U.K. and is now working to re-energize the club as its president.
Michael Walsh, MBA '75, JD, is a partner in Walsh Peterson LLP, a new partnership formed in February 2008. His experience includes seventeen years as a partner for at Jenner & Block LLP in Chicago, and about 10 years as a partner and associate at Kirkland & Ellis in Chicago. He focuses his practice on transactional and counseling matters primarily involving intellectual property and technology including information technology, telecommunications, and electronics. Walsh has successfully negotiated patent, trademark, copyright and software licenses, Internet and e-commerce, outsourcing, strategic alliance, technology procurement, telecommunications, and professional and consulting services agreements, as well as other corporate and commercial transactions involving intellectual property or technology. Representative larger clients include and have included Pactiv, Takeda, Brunswick, Hitachi, Pregis, Gateway, Motorola and General Dynamics. At the other end of the spectrum, he has represented small software consultants and individual entrepreneurs. In addition to the practice of law, Walsh reviews private equity opportunities in the manufacturing, food processing, and healthcare fields.
Walsh holds an AB in physics from Colgate University, an MBA in finance from Johnson at Cornell University, and a JD from Southern Methodist University. In addition, he has taught intellectual property courses as an adjunct professor at Loyola University in Chicago and lectured at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, and Chicago-Kent Law School as well as at Johnson.