UC Blue Ash College

Distinguished Alumni

Dean on stage with one of the Distinguished Alumni

UC Blue Ash College has more than 26,000 alumni who are making an impact around the world and in our local communities. We are proud of the important role we play in the education of our students, and we enjoy watching their professional growth as they pursue their goals. We celebrate a few of our select alumni each year with our Distinguished Alumni Award or the Young Alumnus Outstanding Achievement Award. Congratulations to all of our award recipients!

Distinguished Alumni Award Winners


Diane White headshot
  • Diane White took a less traditional path to college when she enrolled at UC Blue Ash at the age of 39. This is where she discovered her gift for accounting and found support and encouragement from faculty and staff.
  • She went on to graduate Summa Cum Laude from the Lindner College of Business, became a certified public accountant, and began a successful career in accounting and business administration. 
  • Diane worked for a private accounting firm before coming to UC more than 20 years ago. She continued to take on increased responsibility in leadership roles at the university and finally came full circle when she was named the business officer at UC Blue Ash in 2019.
Kim Oberlander

Kim Oberlander

  • Kim Oberlander graduated from the dental hygiene program at UC Blue Ash and has been an advocate for dental public health ever since working as a hygienist at a downtown Cincinnati dental clinic and serving many homeless and disadvantaged patients.
  • She then attended dental school and later played a vital role in opening numerous school-based dental centers, providing care to students who otherwise would have gone without it.
  • She also served in the U.S. Army and provided dental exams and treatment to soldiers awaiting deployment. Kim continues to enjoy a successful career as Dental Director for Primary Health Solutions.

There was no 2021 Distinguished Alumni Award due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Anita Ingram

Anita Ingram

  • Anita Ingram came to UC Blue Ash with a background in engineering but searching for a new direction for her career. She credits the faculty and staff at UC Blue Ash with helping her find her path toward a degree in business and a career in risk management.
  • After earning her associate degree, she completed her bachelor’s degree at the Uptown campus and a Master’s in Business Administration from Xavier University.
  • Anita continues to lead a successful career in risk management that includes her role as Chief Risk Officer for the University of Cincinnati.
Ryan Thomas

Ryan Thomas – Young Alumnus Outstanding Achievement Award

  • Ryan Thomas is a graduate of our Media Communications (formerly Electronic Media) program who earned an associate degree and took his skills directly into the workforce.
  • He co-founded Subvrsive, a digital content company that specializes in virtual and augmented reality, as well as interactive solutions for businesses.
  • Subvrsive has experienced tremendous success while working with a variety of national and international brands. Ryan was named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list for 2019.
John Winstel headshot

John Winstel

  • Came to UC Blue Ash College as a first-generation college student, unsure whether he could succeed in higher education.
  • Was named UC Blue Ash Student of the Year before transitioning to the UC Uptown campus where he earned degrees in accounting and finance.
  • He has enjoyed a successful career in finance that has led to senior-level leadership positions with companies that include Procter & Gamble, Chiquita, Smuckers and the Cooper Tire & Rubber Company.
Jessica Brawand headshot

Jessica Brawand - Young Alumnus Outstanding Achievement Award

  • Served as a student orientation leader and student ambassador before graduating with honors.
  • Went on to graduate Summa Cum Laude from the UC Uptown campus with degrees in communication and psychology.
  • She is pursuing a career in higher education, giving back to the university that has given her so much by serving as an academic advisor at UC Uptown.

Reverend Marjorie McDaniel

  • Had to drop out of high school when she became pregnant as a teenager in Mississippi.
  • Enrolled at UC Blue Ash College at the age of 35 after completing her G.E.D while raising a family and serving as a foster parent.
  • Went on to earn her bachelor’s and master’s degrees before becoming the first African-American female chaplain at The Ohio State University. 

Elizabeth Stetler - Young Alumnus Outstanding Achievement Award

  • A decorated military veteran who served in the U.S. Army and was recognized for distinguished service with the Joint Service Achievement and Army Achievement medals.
  • Attended UC Blue Ash before transitioning to UC Uptown where she earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English and comparative literature.
  • After graduation embarked on a successful career as a writer and editor.  

Tony Lawson

  • Studied environmental science at UC Blue Ash and earned his Bachelor’s of Science from UC.
  • Found his passion for education and learning through science in his innovative work at the Cincinnati Museum Center (CMC).
  • Created new programs connect CMC with local schools and help teachers understand the importance of play and science in children’s lives. 

Haley Fritz - Young Alumnus Outstanding Achievement Award

  • Graduated with her Bachelor’s degree in Applied Administration from UC Blue Ash in 2014 and completed her Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Cincinnati in 2018.
  • Appointed as the youngest Director of Membership ever for the Cincinnati Bar Association.
  • Started her own planning and design company and volunteers for multiple organizations across the region and serves as the Director of Development for Susan G. Komen of Southwest Ohio. 

Andrew Ciafardini

  • Served as the Special Assistant to the President for Intergovernmental Affairs at the White House and Assistant Chief of Protocol at the U.S. Department of State.
  • Traveled to over 30 countries with President Bush.
  • Fulfilled the role of State Representative for Ohio’s 28th District and contributed to Senator Portman’s successful U.S. Senate election.  

Lauren Altman - Young Alumni Outstanding Achievement Award

  • Corporate Manager at Thunderdome Restaurant Group, which owns and manages five concepts (with 30 locations nationwide) including Bakersfield, The Eagle, and Krueger’s Tavern.
  • Moved back to Cincinnati in 2010 to open Thunderdome's first restuarant. 
  • Travels from city to city opening new locations of Thunderdome’s popular restaurants. 

Tammy Wynn

  • Founder and CEO of Angel’s Paws, a pet hospice company that is the only pet service of its kind in the country, that partners with over 85 veterinary hospitals.
  •  Credits her success to the Veterinary Technology program at UC Blue Ash and to many of the professors she had here.
  • Adopted two pets directly from the Veterinary Technology program as a student at UC Blue Ash and describes finding her way to the program as a “happy accident.”

Rachel Richardson

  • Reporter for the Cincinnati Enquirer covering business, government, schools, features and crime in Warren County.
  • First-generation college student.
  • Went on to earn her Bachelor’s degree in History and Master’s in American History from the University of Cincinnati after graduating from UC Blue Ash.
  • Volunteers as a guardian ad litem to give a voice to children within foster care system who’ve been removed form their homes due to abuse or neglect. 

Mary Noel Lucy Reuter

  • Graduated from the first class of Dental Hygiene from Raymond Walters College in 1969 and worked in the field for 45 years.
  • Lobbied in the state house for dentistry and hygiene and began to work at the local level by volunteering to advise the Dental Hygiene Program at UC Blue Ash until her death in 2014.
  • “An essential ingredient of a happy life is commitment to a cause. This, Lucy had in abundance. Lucy was most happy standing by the dental chair brightening the smiles of others,” – Fred Reuter.  

Deborah H. Metz

  • Came to UC Blue Ash College with an interest in science and the environment and went on to earn her bachelor’s, master’s and PhD in Environmental Science from the University of Cincinnati.
  • Became an established expert in water quality and wastewater treatment and has spent most of her career with the Greater Cincinnati Water Works, serving as the Superintendent of Water Quality Treatment.
  • Board President for the Ohio Chapter of the Scleroderma Foundation where she worked to increase awareness and raise funding to support new research about the disease, which has impacted her family. 

Tamara L. (Kirk) Miles

  • A single mother who came to UC Blue Ash to study business and became one of the first students at UC Blue Ash to earn the Robert McCants Scholarship.
  • Earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Business Administration from the University of Cincinnati.
  • Earned the Distinguished Service Award in her role with the U.S. Department of Energy three times. 

Yife Tien

  • Emigrated from Taiwan and studied biology at UC Blue Ash before transitioning to the University of Cincinnati to earn his bachelor’s degree.
  • Studied medicine in the Dominican Republic and the British West Indies.
  • Started his own medical education information company and served for nearly 20 years as the CEO of the American University of the Caribbean.
  • Founded Rocky Vista University, an osteopathic medicine college, in Colorado.  

Julie Harrison Calvert

  • Started at UC Blue Ash College and went on to earn bachelor’s degrees in English and Journalism.
  • Helped revive the Student Government at UC Blue Ash.
  • Vice President of Communication and Strategic Development for the Cincinnati USA Convention and Visitors Bureau.
  • Helped to design a plan that put Cincinnati back on the map as a top-tier destination.  

Kara Sanders

  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash and the University of Cincinnati.
  • Designed and implemented numerous Department of Labor apprenticeship programs.
  • Worked with the Department of Veteran Affairs to develop a career path for all individuals interested in the construction industry.  

Joshua L. Goode

  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash College at 16 years old and completed his education at the University of Cincinnati College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Law.
  • Magistrate in Hamilton County Common Pleas Court by 2005.
  • Owner of The Goode Firm and volunteers for groups such as Make A Wish Foundation, Cincinnati Arts Association, Playhouse in the Park and the Cincinnati Ballet and Ensemble Theatre Company.  

Dennis J. Riedmiller

  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash in 1973 and earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Cincinnati.
  • Built his own businesses: Reidmiller and Associates, Riedmiller Properties and Insurance for One and My Generation.
  • Served on the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, the Northeast Chamber of Commerce, the Children Without Association, Employers Resource Organization and the Cincinnati Better Business Bureau.
  • Has volunteered for UC Blue Ash alumni and campus events. 

David R. Shearman

  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash with a degree in Liberal Arts in 2008 despite being deployed to Iraq in 2006 to serve a second tour of duty. 
  • Received his bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.
  • Veterans Office Coordinator at Georgetown University.
  • Awarded the Bronze Star, a Purple Heart, three Army Commendation medals, four Army Achievement medals and was named Soldier of the Month twice as well as Noncommissioned Officer of the Month once. 

Tammy Mansfield, RN

  • Registered Nurse and manager of the University of Cincinnati AIDS Clinical Trials Unit,
  • On the Community Advisory Board at the hospital she works for and helped coordinate Lifefest, which educates teens on HIV and AIDS.  
  • Volunteers to speak to second year students at UC Blue Ash in the Mental Health/Chronic Illness course through the Nursing program. 

Rick Konrad

  • City Manager of Fruitland, Maryland and manages a multi-million dollar city operation on the eastern shore of Maryland.
  • Worked as a Director of Recreation Facilities in Lockland, OH.
  • Spent a lifetime giving back by volunteering for organizations such as the Historical Society (serving as President), the Fraternal Order of Eagles and received the Westside Community Center President’s Award.   

Tamara E. Jones

  • Served as Associate Director of P&G’s External Relations team, leading the company’s communication at every major marketing event around the globe for more than 10 years.
  • Junior Achievement consultant in Cincinnati, teaching the elementary school program as a volunteer to more than 500 children.
  • Volunteers for the greater Cincinnati Alzheimer’s Association and joined the Board of Directors in 2008.
  • Recognized by the Greater Cincinnati YWCA as a “Rising Star” and is a graduate of the YWCA Rising Star board leadership program. 

Michael Carr

  • Donates his time and talent as a professional musician to help raise money for various charities, participates in local community cleanup efforts and supports the local fire and rescue squads.
  • Vice President and CIO at National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corp.
  • Climbed his way up the corporate ladder by starting out as a programmer for the company. 

Rebecca Lee, PhD, RN

  • Registered Nurse and graduated with a Ph.D. in 2001.
  • Worked as a member of the multidisciplinary research team at Children’s Hospital Medical Center, where she was awarded the Graduate Student of Merit Award by the Ohio Public.
  • Serves as a voice for the underprivileged. 

Jane Kettlehake

  • Director of Imaging in the Radiology Department at The Christ Hospital, adjunct assistant professor for her alma mater and publisher and presenter on a wide range of radiology and health care topics.
  • Recognized as a committed community volunteer by serving as President of the Board for the Komen Greater Cincinnati Affiliate and volunteer treasurer for the Race for the Cure
  • Advocates for education and serves as a mentor for students, faculty and staff at UC Blue Ash.  

Gayle Heintzelman

  • CEO and President of Patient Care Services for Mercy Hospital Clermont.
  • Leads a team of 600+ health care professionals and more than 300 affiliated physicians.
  • Volunteers for many organizations such as the Greater Cincinnati Nurse Executives, the American Red Cross Disaster Response Team and the Emergency Nurses Association. 

Thomas M. DeNoma

  • Served as the President of the UC Blue Ash student tribunal.
  • Earned his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Cincinnati and went on to work in the insurance field. 
  • Owns a property management company with his wife and is active on the board of the Vision & Vocational Center, working to assist the blind.

Carol Fisher

  •  While working as a nurse, earned a Master’s in Business Administration.
  • Served as a Girl Scout Leader and school volunteer for organizations such as Sigma Theta Tau International and the American Nurses Association.
  • Worked in the medical field for over 20 years before founding a business called FirmAnalysis, a legal nursing consulting company.
  • Taught nursing classes at Winston-Salem State University and is listed in Who’s Who in American Nursing.

Gregory P. Niesen

  • Earned his associate’s degree from UC Blue Ash before transferring to the University of Cincinnati and graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in accounting.
  • Earned CPA designation in 1992 and has worked for The Fifth Third Bancorp, Fidelity Financial and Winton Financial Corp.
  • Serves as President and CEO of New Richmond National Bank and is active with the Boys & Girls Club of Clermont County and the Clermont County Septic System Rehabilitation Financing Committee.

Clifford Jones

  • First male to graduate from the UC Blue Ash Dental Hygiene program.
  • Serves as the dental health consultant and program coordinator of the “Health Care for the Homeless” project through the Greater Cincinnati Oral Health Council.
  • Holds leadership positions with the Cincinnati Coalition for the Homeless and the Ohio Dental Hygienists’ Association. 

Robert Smith, III

  • Started in the very first class of UC Blue Ash’s Weekend Degree program.
  • Director of Operations for TSST Technologies and lives in Xiamen, Chins.
  • Responsible for all aspects of bringing a world-class manufacturing facility to life – from plant design and layout to staffing and capital investment financing.  

Elizabeth "Biz" McClure

  • Received an associate’s in dental hygiene from UC Blue Ash.
  • Later obtained a bachelor’s and master’s degree in education.
  • Returned to UC Blue Ash in 1990 as a professor in the dental hygiene program.  
  • Served on the boards of the Greater Cincinnati Oral Health Council, Head Start Services and Ohio Dental Hygienists’ Association.

Diane McPhillips

  • Graduated from the Raymond Walters nursing program in 1976.
  • Returned to UC Blue Ash in 2000 to become an assistant professor.
  • Lead author of an $840,000 “Grant for Academic Initiative in Nursing” grant from the Bureau of Health & Human Services to make nursing education available to minority and underprivileged students.
  • Created a new diversity course for the nursing department. 

Dr. Gary Conroy

  • Pursued his education at UC Blue Ash while working full-time.
  • Earned a doctorate in Chemistry.
  • Widely regarded as a legal expert in his field of research of PVC stabilization and holds U.S. patents.
  • Worked to develop environmentally friendly PVC stabilizers which is crucial to the green chemistry movement. 

Nancy Fitch

  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash College while working full-time and went on to earn a master’s degree from the University of Cincinnati.
  • Went on to have a career as a Licensed Independent Social Worker, providing psychiatric evaluation of patients entering emergency rooms at hospitals.
  • Has made positive differences in the lives of abused and neglected children in the community. 

Sharon Keegan

  • Enrolled at UC Blue Ash almost a decade after completing high school.
  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash in 1986 as the student of the year and pursued a career at University Hospital.
  • Earned a bachelor’s degree and a Master of Education from the University of Cincinnati while working full-time.
  • Known for her commitment to patient care in a clinical setting. 

Eric Broyles

  • Came to UC Blue Ash after graduating near the bottom of his high school class. Found the inspiration and confidence he needed from our professors.
  • Graduated from the UC Lindner College of Business with honors and graduated from law school. Became a very successful corporate attorney and entrepreneur.
  • Donated $1 million to his student scholarship fund at UC Blue Ash in 2018. Visits the campus regularly to provide motivational presentations to students.

Kelly Montchai

  • Started out as an evening student and eventually became a full-time student two years later.
  • Earned her Bachelor’s in Communication Disorders and a Master’s in Speech and Language Pathology.
  • Received rave reviews from adults and children for her skill and treatment strategies for students with communication problems. 

Acie Walker

  • Created a Black Studies Program and a Black Student Union while attending UC Blue Ash.
  • Held a career at General Motors where he promoted diversity, fair hiring and advancement opportunities.
  • Involved in tutoring and mentoring high school youth. 

Bob Bozeman

  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash in 1967 and worked in the information technology industry,
  • Held senior management positions in high-tech companies.
  • Helped create Angel Investors, L.L.P. 

Michael and Rose Vitale

  • Michael worked at P&G for 15 years before returning to UC Blue Ash to advance his career.
  • Rose was a stay-at-home mom before coming to UC Blue Ash to get started on a new career.
  • Both Michael and Rose carried a 4.0 grade point average while juggling family life and work.
  • Michael continued to work at P&G and Rose worked in the banking industry. 

Elaine M. Hill

  • Attorney and domestic violence prosecutor.
  • Held a position in the office of Florida State Attorney General Janet Reno, where she prosecuted domestic violence cases.
  • Created what is believed to be the first domestic violence court in the nation. 

Robert L. Schuler

  • Former Senator. 
  • Came to UC Blue Ash to increase his skills with a real estate degree.
  • Worked on The Deer Park Recreation and Parks Commission, the Sycamore Board of Trustees, the Hamilton County Regional Planning Commission and was elected to the Ohio House of Representatives in 1993.

Douglas R. Wimmers

  • Earned a commercial art degree as an evening student.
  • Went on to work in graphic design and serve as vice president of Miller-Meyers.
  • Received first place for the Best Yellow Pages Directory cover in 1998 and is a former champion bodybuilder.

Mary Ann Stotts, R.D.H.

  • Registered Dental Hygienist.
  • Worked as a missionary on a Mercy Ship and traveled to Romania, Ghana, Estonia and Lithuania.
  • First dental hygienist to work with inmates at the Mansfield Correctional Institution and has worked with Habitat for Humanity. 

Mark R.M. Otten

  • Received Associate of Arts in pre-forestry and wildlife management from UC Blue Ash in 1983.
  • Earned a Bachelor of Science in natural resources from the Ohio State University and a Master of Science in fisheries and wildlife from Michigan State University.
  • Scientist with Enterprise Advisory Services, Inc. in California and was responsible fro design, coordination and implementation of ecological studies to asses effects of oil field developments on endangered species and their habitats. 

Dr. Cynthia Stegeman

  • Graduated from the UC Blue Ash dental hygiene program in 1979 and received her Bachelor’s of Science in public health from the Indiana University School of Medicine.
  • Has a Master’s of Education from the University of Cincinnati and has been affiliated with both Christ and St. Luke Hospital as a clinical dietician.
  • Created the Healthy Habits weight-loss program for St. Luke Hospital.
  • Wrote the first nutrition textbook specifically for dental hygienists.  

Ann Treiber Naber

  • Graduated from the UC Blue Ash dental hygiene program in 1974 and worked in a private practice for 23 years.
  • Advisory Board member at Sinclair Community College dental hygiene program and piloted an innovative program on smokeless tobacco in Dayton area schools.
  • Past president of the Ohio Dental Hygienists’ Association. 

Penny Lammert

  • Earned an Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Science and taught at Ursuline Academy in Blue Ash for more than 20 years.
  • The General Electric Foundation has recognized her inventive and challenging teaching methods.
  • Nominated fore the prestigious Ashland Teaching Achievement Award.
  • Chaired the Ursuline faculty, moderated school activities and worked as a statistician for the Cincinnati Bengals and UC varsity sports. 

Dr. Alyce Kennedy

  • Earned an Associate of Applied Science, Bachelor of Science and a Medical Doctor degree.
  • Member of the first graduating class of UC Blue Ash in 1969 and worked as a medical technologist while earning her degree.
  • Worked in a clinic serving primarily Hispanic and Native American patients in New Mexico after earning her M.D. from Wright State University in 1982.

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Dr. Michael Washington

  • Has an Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Master of Education and a Doctorate in Education.
  • An expert in and advocate for urban education and is the founder of the Afro-American Studies Program at Northern Kentucky University.
  • Wrote a survival guide for minorities and spearheaded a program with P&G to recruit African American females. 

Patricia Frese

  • Earned Associate of Science, Bachelor’s of Science and Master’s in Education.  
  • Chairs the UC Blue Ash Dental Hygiene Department and is a researcher on diverse topics such as animal dentistry and smokeless tobacco.
  • Advocates for school and community dental education and one of the 14 national dental hygiene speakers to serve as a consultant to P&G. 

Daniel DeJonckheere

  • Senior information technology architect for IBM who was chosen to design a computer tax system for the government of Thailand.
  •  Serves as a volunteer consultant for Boys Hope.
  • Works in nursing homes and builds trails for the Cincinnati Nature Center. 

Elizabeth Betemps, Ph.D.

  • Registered Nurse and Ph.D. who creates pathways to advancement for nurses
  • Director of the Educational Mobility and Accelerated Pathway Program at the University of Cincinnati’s College of Nursing & Health.
  • Earned her associate degree in 1974 and her doctorate in 1992.  

Marilyn U. Grismere

  • Earned a Bachelor of Science and a Master’s in Education.
  • Former UC Blue Ash student that brings her practical and educational experience in office administration to the classroom, leading many students into professional success.
  • Author of four books. 

Mary Anne Christie

  • Earned Associate of Applied Business and Bachelor of Arts from Marietta College.
  • Worked to assure women a voice in the political process and made history when she was elected first woman mayor of Madeira in 1975.
  • Owns a real estate appraisal business. 

Donna J. Casey

  • Registered Nurse and received Master of Science in Nursing and Oncology Certified Nurse.
  •  A leader in health education by creating programs that benefit nurses and patients.
  • Educational nurse specialist for Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Ms. Casey has experience in cancer, diabetes and pain control education. 

Lieutenant H. Richard Burdick

  • Veteran of the Blue Ash Police Department.
  • Graduate of the prestigious Police Executive Leadership College and the FBI National Academy.  

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Jack C. Malott

  • Summa cum laude graduate of the UC Blue Ash Radiologic Technology program.
  • Worked as Director of Radiologic Administration at University Hospital.
  • Nationally recognized for his service and publications in the field of radiology.
  • Fellow of the American Society of Radiologic Technologists and the American Hospital Radiology Administrators.  

Montre VanAken

  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash in 1975 and is a cancer survivor.
  • Chief radiation therapist at University Hospital.
  • Practices radiation planning for Medical Radiologic Physics Group.
  • One of the first local therapists to be certified in radiation planning and has presented at local, national and international conferences. 

Frank L. Mink, Ph.D.

  • Earned an Associate’s degree in Environmental Management from UC Blue Ash.
  • Worked as president and chief toxicologist for Mink & Associates, Inc.
  • Earned a Ph.D. from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.
  • National expert on Hazardous waste sites and their impact on public health and the environment. 

Ronald D. Brown

  • Graduated from UC Blue Ash in 1973 and went on to earn his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Cincinnati.
  • Earned a J.D. from the University of Dayton Law School.
  • Active community volunteer and a member of Leadership Cincinnati.


Contact Information

University of Cincinnati Alumni Association
Phone: 877-4-UC-ALUM
Email: alumni@uc.edu