David Ford (TX, '90) honored for 42 years of service

Family, friends and colleagues recently gathered to honor Dr. David L. Ford Jr. who, after 42 years of service to The University of Texas at Dallas, will retire Aug. 31.

“Where I am and where I started a number of years ago was to really move beyond success to significance,” Ford, the longest-serving faculty member at the Naveen Jindal School of Management, told guests. “For me, significance is having an impact on other people’s lives and then moving out of their way.”

That impact has been felt by both his peers and what Ford calls his academic sons, daughters, nieces, nephews and cousins, many of whom have gone on to careers in academia.

Dr. Hasan Pirkul (left), dean of the Naveen Jindal School of Management, presents a gift to Dr. David L. Ford Jr. at a recent retirement celebration. After 42 years at UT Dallas, Ford will retire Aug. 31.

Dr. Hasan Pirkul (left), dean of the Naveen Jindal School of Management, presents a gift to Dr. David L. Ford Jr. at a recent retirement celebration. After 42 years at UT Dallas, Ford will retire Aug. 31.

“If I chaired your dissertation, then I’m your academic father,” he said. “If I was on your committee, I’m your academic uncle. If I had to write a letter of reference for you, for your promotion and tenure and that was … my main connection with you, or as a mentor, then I’m your academic cousin.”

One of his academic daughters, Dr. Kiran Mirza Ismail MBA’01, MS’02, PhD’06, is now an assistant professor of management at St. John’s University in New York. She wrote a congratulatory note that was part of a video created for the event.

“May you retire knowing that your positivity, dedication, and mentorship inspired generations of doctoral students and peers. You surely will be missed by the academic community,” Ismail wrote.

About 125 people attended the event. Arthur Gregg, assistant vice president for Multicultural Affairs and director of the Multicultural Center at UT Dallas, served as emcee. Festivities included a farewell tribute from Dr. Hasan Pirkul, dean of the Jindal School, and an introduction of Ford’s wife, Jackie, whom he gave effusive thanks and a large bouquet.

Ford came to UT Dallas in July 1975 as an associate professor of management and administrative sciences. He served in that position until September 1983, when he was promoted to his current role of professor of organizations, strategy, and international management.

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Marco Roca (FL, '01) appointed President of Global Development at CEC

Mark Frissora ,CEO of Caesars Entertainment Corporation (CEC), is set to implement an aggressive global expansion strategy with CEC looking to grow its corporate assets ‘beyond gambling’.

Last week, Frissora confirmed the appointment of two key executive hires, placing former Hard Rock International VP Marco Roca as new ‘President of Global Development’ and leisure sector M&A veteran Michael Daly as ‘VP of Group Strategy & Acquisitions’.

Speaking to investors, Frissora stated that the executive appointments would help the US gambling operator ‘unlock new growth channels’ and ‘bring more focus to Caesars international network expansion’.

Appointed in 2015 as CEC leader, Frissora has navigated Caesars Entertainment’s complex bankruptcy and group restructure. The CEO has detailed that the company will official exit all its bankruptcy proceedings this September, marking a ‘new chapter’ for CEC and its stakeholders.

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SIBF Alabama Sporting Clays

Date: Friday, July 28, 2017

Time: 2:00pm
 
Location: Selwood Farm, 706 Selwood Road, Alpine, AL 35014

Cost: $50 (ages 10 and up)
 
Details: Clay shoot followed by cocktails at Weewoka Creek Farm hosted by Patsy and Stan Graves (AL, '99). Cost includes golf cart and cocktails, attendees should provide their own gun and ammunition (available for purchase on site) This program presents a perfect opportunity to introduce your contacts to SIBF. Invite them to attend as our guest! Contact Membership Consultant Kathy Payne for assistance.

Peter Siegel (FL, '13) joins Starkweather & Shepley as Area President, Southeast Sales Leader

Starkweather & Shepley, one of the largest independent insurance brokerage firms in the U.S., today announces the launch of its new Tampa, FL office lead by Industry veteran, Peter Siegel. Highlighting this expansion, S&S has tapped 23-year insurance veteran, Peter Siegel to become the Area President.

Siegel will lead new business growth and retention efforts, as well as target select agency and talent acquisitions that meet Starkweather’s criteria.  “Peter has the right relationships and energy to make our expansion throughout Florida successful,” said David Soforenko, President & COO of Starkweather and Shepley. “Our firm views Tampa as the next logical next step to our continued growth and we are excited to have Peter lead that effort.”

Siegel joins the company from AJ Gallagher, where he was Area Senior Vice President and was responsible for handling Healthcare, Manufacturing and Large Multinational accounts. Previously, he was a Vice Present at Marsh. Peter is a graduate of Northeastern University in Boston.

Established in 1879, Starkweather & Shepley is presently the largest independent agency in Rhode Island and the 72nd largest insurance brokerage firm in the U.S. Starkweather & Shepley, held in Trust since 1935, insures the firm will remain privately-held in perpetuity, providing certainty to clients and associates alike. The firm provides commercial and personal insurance, health and employee benefits, surety bonding and risk management services. These services are provided nationally and internationally, through its partnership with Assurex Global. Headquartered in East Providence, RI, Starkweather has additional branch offices in Westerly, RI; Bristol and Shelton, CT; Westwood, Sturbridge, and Martha’s Vineyard, MA; and Fort Myers, FL.

Fellowship Award Named in Suzanne Nuckolls' (DC) Honor, Recognizing 38 Years of Teaching

St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes School (SSSAS), a college preparatory, Episcopal day school in Alexandria, Virginia, has renamed its 8th grade Fellowship Award as the Suzanne Griffin Nuckolls Fellowship Prize in honor of Suzanne's 38 years of teaching at the School.   Suzanne was recognized with a surprise announcement on June 7 during Middle School Prize Day with the renaming of the Fellowship Award in her honor.  According to Head of School Kirsten Adams, "the eighth grade class confers this award upon the boy and girl in the eighth grade who possess the best qualities of a true friend. Recipients demonstrate in their daily lives true friendship through the qualities of loyalty, compassion, trust and service to others which Mrs. Nuckolls exemplified in our Saints community".

Adrienne Pakis Gillon [spouse of Bill Gillon (TN, ’14)], Suzanne Nuckolls, Carl and Marilyn Shedlock, and Randy Nuckolls

Adrienne Pakis Gillon [spouse of Bill Gillon (TN, ’14)], Suzanne Nuckolls, Carl and Marilyn Shedlock, and Randy Nuckolls

Suzanne joined the all girls St. Agnes School in 1978, to teach mathematics.  She became Chairman of the Middle School math department ten years later when St. Agnes merged with the nearby St. Stephen's boys School. She served on various committees including Admissions, Professional Growth, and Development, and three, 10-year evaluation committees. Suzanne was instrumental in leading SSSAS to adopt single sex math and science classes at the middle school level.   Her innovative math class was profiled by several local and global news agencies including an article in The Washington Post titled, “An Equation for Equality.”
 
For Suzanne and her husband, Randy (DC, ’83), being a Saint is an essential part of their family story. Their daughters, Emily ’02 and Caroline ’07, are proud alumni of the school.

Congratulations Suzanne. 

Honorary Canadian Consul General Leigh Shockey (TN, '09) talks NAFTA

After a week in the Volunteer State, Canadian Chamber of Commerce chief Perrin Beatty was convinced Tennesseans want more Canada: More trade, more tourism, more business partnerships.Leading a Canadian delegation to Memphis and Nashville, Beatty said he found fertile ground for Canada’s pro-trade agenda and tepid support for scrapping the 23-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement.

“The message I’ll give to our business community is, these are folks interested in doing business and we should be looking for ways to do more,” Beatty said Friday in Memphis. Leigh Shockey, chief executive of Drexel Chemical and honorary Canadian consul general in Memphis, said trade with Canada is responsible for about 170,000 Tennessee jobs. Tennessee has a $3 billion trade surplus with Canada, the state’s largest trading partner.

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Josh Jaquish (FL, '15) & Tribridge jail management system scores win

Tribridge is based in Tampa. Virginia-based DXC Technology acquired Tribridge, which focuses on cloud computing software and services, in a deal announced July 5.

Offender360 is a tool for correctional and public safety institutions to manage inmates from intake to release. Tribridge Offender360 will help the sheriff’s office manage inmate housing; grievance and appeals processing; court operations and inmate programs, according to a press release. Terms of the contract weren’t disclosed.

“Like many state and local institutions nationwide, Maricopa County is under close watch to provide streamlined jail management operations and ease sustained burdens on taxpayers as public funds continue to wane,” says Tribridge Public Sector Vice President Josh Jaquish in a statement. “Tribridge Offender360 is already helping agencies like the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office establish a more refined jail management system, one that’s both cost-effective and rehabilitory for offenders in the system.”

Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office serves the unincorporated areas of Maricopa County and several contract cities.

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Will Ratliff (AL, '89) appointed to Board of Councilors at The Carter Center

The Carter Center, a not-for-profit organization advancing peace and health worldwide, has appointed 21 new members to its Board of Councilors, bringing total membership to 211.

The Board of Councilors is a leadership advisory group that promotes understanding of The Carter Center and its activities among opinion leaders and the broader community. Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, and staff members give updates about the Center’s activities to board members throughout the year.

"Our Board of Councilors creates an intimate link between The Carter Center, the city of Atlanta, and the state of Georgia by helping us to promote the work and mission of the Center in their communities," President Carter said.

Since its founding in 1987, the Board of Councilors has been led by some of Atlanta's most distinguished civic leaders, including its current chair, Shan Cooper, chief transformation officer, WestRock Company.

Following are the new councilors:

Dr. Raphael Bostic, president and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Julie Haley, CEO & co-founder, Edge Solutions
Philip E. Holladay, Jr., partner, King & Spalding
Lynne Homrich, founding executive chairwoman & CEO, League of Change Institute
Sue Kolloru Barger, partner and managing director, Boston Consulting Group
Craig Lesser, managing partner, Pendleton Group
Daniel McMorrow, general manager, D-Mac Industries
Bartow Morgan, Jr., chief executive officer, Brand Group Holdings
Richard Novack, president and general manager, MidSouth Market, Cigna
Helen Smith Price, vice president of global community affairs, The Coca-Cola Company
William T. Ratliff III, CEO, Collateral Companies
Matt Richburg, Ph.D., managing partner, Ampersand Leadership Group
E. Hearst Roane, Esq.
Caroline Scott Talley, senior counsel, Parker, Hudson, Rainer & Dobbs
Bernard Taylor, Sr., partner, Alston & Bird
Paul E. Viera, Jr., CEO and partner, EARNEST Partners
Jeff Williams, managing partner, US Strategic Capital Venture Fund
Rocky Williform, founder and CEO, MixP3 Corporation
Jim Winestock, senior vice president (retired), United Parcel Service
John C. Yates, partner, Morris, Manning & Martin
Cynthia Hardy Young, CEO & founder, Pivot Global Partners

15 Minutes with Sean Hartness (SC, '99)

Sean P. Hartness is actively involved in real estate development in Greenville and Charleston. Mr. Hartness earned a bachelor’s degree in history in 1992 from the University of South Carolina. He is an active pilot and aviation enthusiast.

After a 20-plus year career in packaging with Hartness International, he founded Hartness Development in Greenville and was part of the leadership team that established King and Society, a full-service real estate firm in Charleston. Since making this career move, he led efforts to develop the Homestead at Hartness, a 140-homes for lease innovative development in Greenville.

Currently, he is a board member of Furman University, Board of Visitors; Airplane Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), the Greenville County Museum of Art and Triple Tree Aerodrome. He is a past board member of the Peace Center for Performing Arts and the Community Foundation of Greenville Inc.

He is active with the Society of International Business Fellows and attends First Baptist Greenville.

1.) How long has your family been a part of the Greenville community?

My grandfather moved to Greenville from North Carolina in the early years of WWII to start a Pepsi franchise in the Upstate.

2) Who originally purchased the property now being developed?

My father, Thomas P. Hartness, began to purchase property in the late 1970s. Back then, the land was considered to be far outside of Greenville. My family built a home there in 1980. Hartness International began purchasing adjacent property in the mid-1980s and relocated their HQ on the property in 1986. So, the land has been in our family for over 40 years.

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Nancy Peterson Hearn (TN, '91) named to The Conservancy Board

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Nancy Peterson Hearn (TN, '91)  has been elected to the Board of Directors of The Conservancy for the Parthenon and Centennial Park, a nonprofit organization in Nashville, Tennessee, whose mission is to preserve, enhance and share the Parthenon and the park so that all future generations may benefit from these enriching cultural and educational landmarks. A nationally recognized business entrepreneur, Nancy Peterson Hearn is chairman and chief executive officer of Peterson Tool Company, Inc. Under her leadership, the company has made exponential gains in sales, production , and reputation, and is ranked among the world’s premier designers and manufacturers of custom insert tooling. Peterson Tool received ISO 9001 certification and has earned numerous quality and certification awards including General Motors’ Targets for Excellence Award and Caterpillar’s coveted Certified Supplier of Quality Materials Award.  An active member of SIBF, Nancy also serves on the Aquinas College Board of Governors and the Mississippi University for Women’s National Board of Distinguished Women.

Jimmy and Dee Haslam (OH, '09) are committed to making an impact in Cleveland

The Browns have agreed to pledge more money than originally expected to cover the cost of the installation of two new synthetic turf football fields to Cleveland city schools, according to Cleveland.com.

Last year, the Browns announced that they would install turf fields at five high schools for an estimated cost of between $2 and $2.5 million. According to Cleveland.com, that work has already been done at three city fields -at Roye Kidd Stadium for John F. Kennedy High School, Bump Taylor Field near Glenville High School and the field at James F. Rhodes High School.

But two schools – John Adams and John Marshall – need more work than expected. That’s where the Browns and owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam stepped in, agreeing to cover those costs according to school district CEO Eric Gordon. The Browns told Cleveland.com the combined amount for the two schools will be about $500,000.

With the new work and the addition of scoreboards, the total is expected to be around $3.5 million. The five schools had to play the bulk of their games in other parts of the city or on the road last season.

“The entire Browns organization and Dee and Jimmy Haslam are committed to making an impact in Cleveland,” Jenner Tekancic, a spokesperson for the team, told Cleveland.com. “By providing five high-quality synthetic turf fields, this project will help provide quality opportunities for youth football and other community activities, as well as an additional learning space outside of the classroom and help encourage school attendance and participation.”

Tekancic added: “It was important to our team that we ensured these educational resources were available to CMSD and its students this fall.”

USA Today

Leigh Shockey (TN, '09) elected President for 59th AutoZone Liberty Bowl

The 59th AutoZone Liberty Bowl has named its president. Leigh Shockey, chairman and CEO of Drexel Chemical Co., was elected president of the 2017 AutoZone Liberty Bowl Festival Assoc. 

“Leigh has been a strong supporter and advocate of the Bowl and all our activities for many years,” said Steve Ehrhart, executive director of the AutoZone Liberty Bowl, in a release. “We’re excited about the energy, enthusiasm, and dedication Leigh brings to the AutoZone Liberty Bowl.”

The game will pair the Big 12 against the SEC. The game date is still to be determined.

In addition to Shockey’s appointment, the following people were also named 2017 officers: Scott Barber, chairman; Bill Kinkade, vice president; Bill Giles, secretary; Chris Moore, treasurer.

“One of the AutoZone Liberty Bowl’s key missions is to showcase Memphis to the rest of the world through the various year-round community events conducted by the association,” said Shockey in a release. “I’m proud to serve as president this year, as our events shine a positive light on Memphis and create community pride for local citizens. In addition, we will continue to share the life-saving message of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital through our events during the year.”

Memphis Business Journal

Mark Kaiser (GA, '01) Shares How Corporate Innovators Can Manage Startup Relationships

Name: Mark Kaiser
Title: Founder and CEO
Company: Venadar
Total Corporate Innovation Experience: 15 years
LinkedIn: Mark Kaiser

Startups and corporate innovators often have a tenuous relationship. While enterprise leaders fear the disruptive threat of innovative startups, the nimble nature of a startup offers massive opportunity for forward-thinking innovators. Sometimes the most impactful way to solve a problem facing an enterprise business is to find an external agency or startup partner already solving that problem on a smaller scale.

It is sometimes overlooked that a primary responsibility of corporate innovators is to discover and partner with emerging startups, and also to make recommendations on investment and acquisition. finding startups that meet corporate criteria – whether that be in size, scope, scale, or staff – that can help meet corporate innovation objectives is not always easy. That’s where the help of corporate venturing firms like Venadar come in.

We recently spoke with Mark Kaiser, Venadar’s founder & CEO, about how corporations have changed their M&A priorities; where startups sit within the corporate innovation spectrum, and to solicit advice for intrapreneurs struggling to secure buy-in on a startup engagement strategy.

 

What prompted you to start a corporate venturing firm in 2005?

Prior to Venadar, I served in four other executive positions, including several times in the CEO role, so I became painfully aware of the constant pressure to drive growth. In the early 2000s, I became curious as to why, outside of a few IT partnerships, my organization didn’t seek or maintain working relationships with any startups or entrepreneurs. The more I thought about it, the more of a good idea I thought it was to engage with startups. That’s when I decided to start Venadar – to help connect corporations with startups that could move business priorities forward faster than they were equipped to do.

 

In the 12 years since, what have been the biggest changes in how corporations determine where, when and why to invest in startups? 

Until about five years ago, organizations put a lot of effort toward learning and understanding technology. There was genuine interest in disruptive tech, but unfortunately, IT, C-Suite and even business units had a bias towards startup innovation. In plain terms – they didn’t want to acknowledge that the startup might be creating something that the organization didn’t have the resources, skills or time to do.

Since about 2011 or 2012, Fortune 500s, in particular, began to view the  acquisition of startups as a means to drive growth. As such, some of the biggest brands in the world extended their reach through M&A in ways once never imagined. For example, Tyson’s Foods acquired its way into having an entire division dedicated to proteins other than chicken. Hershey’s acquired jerky maker Krave with an explicit mandate to transform the $30 million brand into a $500 million brand.

The prioritization of growth via M&A is not all that’s changed. As we all know, the modern consumer and customer now demand products and services expeditiously. And if it’s not working, we demand a pivot. But typical corporate R&D is very slow, sometimes taking years from design thinking to implementation. Consumers don’t have patience for such slow innovation anymore. With this reality, corporations took notice of people flocking to startups for speed and convenience, so they knew it was time to act or risk losing market share and revenue, potentially for good.

Leroy Nix (AL, '15) APPOINTED to Montevallo Board of Trustees

The Alabama Legislature recently confirmed the appointment of Leroy Nix to the University of Montevallo Board of Trustees.

Nix, the manager of corporate and constituent affairs at Alabama Power’s corporate headquarters in Birmingham, promotes the company’s legislative and regulatory agenda in Alabama and Washington, D.C.

In this capacity, he works closely with elected officials, community leaders and stakeholder groups at both the state and national levels on issues related to energy and environmental policy. Nix also serves as the liaison between Alabama Power and its wholesale customers, which represent five percent of the company’s revenue.

Nix is a 2003 graduate of the University of Montevallo where he received a bachelor’s degree in political science. He went on to earn his J.D. from the University of Alabama School of Law.

Birmingham Business Journal

Ambassador Abraham M. Keita to speak at SIBF Atlanta Breakfast

2016 International Children’s Peace Prize winner, Ambassador Abraham M. Keita, is currently on a 4-day visit to Atlanta, GA at the invitation of H.E.A.L (Help Educate & Assist Lives), Inc. According to a dispatch from the US, on September 7, spoke at Habitat for Humanity International Headquarters where he lobbied and gave  reasons for the building of decent houses for West Point residents; a decision HFHI is considering.

Habitat for Humanity International is world wide non-profit that builds houses for poor and disadvantaged people. Over the years, HFHI has assisted millions of people from around the world by building or proving for them what they can call ‘homes’.

West Point is currently affected by ongoing sea erosion, which has made over 6,000 residents homeless. Keita’s fight to have HFHI  come to Liberia to build new houses or improve homes for West Point residents could bring a ‘joy’ they might never forget.

Born in West Point, the Children’s Peace Prize winner has not forgotten his roots. Everywhere he goes, he continues to push the plight of West Pointers and Liberians in general. West Point, on many instances, has been hardly hit by natural disasters.

In another development, Amb. Keita will, on September 9, 2016, speak at the Society of International Business Fellows Atlanta Chapter’s breakfast to discuss the importance of supporting non-profit organizations that work with and for underprivileged children in Liberia, Africa and the world.

On the same day, he is expected to visit the prestigious Morehouse College. During his visit at the college, he will meet with administrators, faculty members, and students. Morehouse is a historical African-American University that has produced great, renowned and successful people including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Ambassador Andrew Young and actor Samuel L. Jackson.

GLOBAL NEWS NETWORK

Jennifer Zeller (GA, '16) Tapped For Federal Workforce Council

Jennifer Zeller (GA, '16), manager of engineering, research and creative services in Georgia Power's Community & Economic Development department, has been selected as one of 14 individuals nationally to serve on a new federal advisory board. She is the only economic development professional on the council. The Workforce Information Advisory Council (WIAC) is mandated as part of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014. The council's directive is to consult with and provide written recommendations to the U.S. secretary of Labor on ways to use and improve nationwide workforce and labor market information systems.

"The availability of skilled labor and professional talent continues to be one of the most critical factors in site location decisions worldwide. Our goal is to maximize the value of the information collected by the U.S. government to business and to the community at large," said Zeller. "We hope to assist government agencies in understanding how workforce information is used and why it is important. At the same time, we will make recommendations on which data surveys are critical and which are less important, giving input to the U.S. Department of Labor as they make tough decisions in the face of budget cuts."

For instance, a company looking to locate a new plant may need employees with certain skills or education. Economic development organizations such as ours at Georgia Power use the Census and workforce information surveys to demonstrate that a certain city or area has the workforce to meet those needs. International and domestic companies use this information, too, in deciding where they should locate a new office. Also, by defining the type of talent available in an area, economic development organizations, either at the state or local level, can focus on attracting specific industries.

The survey results also provide financial or occupational data to corporations at large. Georgia Power uses the survey information to ensure employees are fairly and equally compensated. By reviewing salary information for similar occupations, a prospective company can verify that its pay scales are comparable. "The workforce data we provide to prospective companies helps tell the story of why Georgia is a great place for business," said Anne Kaiser, vice president of Community and Economic Development. "And that story is not about the facts and figures; it's about the people in our communities and the value they bring to the workplace. Jennifer's participation on this board will make sure the data available in the United States continues to improve, giving us an even more compelling story to share."

Zeller will represent Georgia Power and the economic development industry on the WIAC. "We on the council have several goals. We will review available data and we will educate government agencies on its importance in growing communities and attracting and retaining business. "I am honored to participate on the Advisory Council," added Zeller. "This is a huge opportunity for us to influence and shape future understanding of and budgeting for vital workforce information and to educate government on the use for the private sector and economic development."

SIBF Where in the World: Weekend in Saratoga

SIBF members and guests gathered in upstate New York recently for a one-of-a-kind program at the Saratoga Race Course. High points included a reception at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame and a panel discussion on the business and traditions of thoroughbred racing with Tampa Bay Downs President Stella Thayer (FL, '95). Attendees were treated to a behind-the-scenes tour of the Oklahoma Training Track where they learned about the daily routine of trainers and horse owners. A VIP day at the races and our own featured race, the SIBF Chairman's Cup sponsored by Stewart Dansby (AL, '95), topped off this exciting experience!

"Saratoga was fabulous! There is such a rich history that is visible in the charming brick buildings on Broadway as well as the traditions around the horses and people of the town. The highlight was a day at the races watching from the comfort of our private suite as jockeys guided beautiful horses. Top notch event! Yet, the best part, as always, was the camaraderie of the SIBFers! As a new member that entered through the SIBF Leadership Academy, I am finding everyone to be extremely welcoming, and am enjoying forming friendships with the long-standing members of this group. SIBF is a wonderful network, and you get out of it what you put in. I would encourage all new members to continue to be active and find ways to support the group. There are wonderful friendships to be built, and a rich SIBF tradition of our own to carry forward."  - Bobby Henebry (GA, '15)

Cambridge Money & Responsibility 2016: Day Five

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Today was another jam-packed day in Cambridge! We started off with a lecture on engaging in philanthropy to generate value in the community. After a short coffee break, we looked at a few neuroscience studies that shed light on whether or not we are as conscious of our decision making as we believe to be. Following a pleasant lunch, we spoke about big data and sequencing the human genome. Our final lecture of the day brought home the importance of storytelling and fiction, even for the lives of future professionals.
In the afternoon, our group went punting—we boarded wooden skiffs that we even got a chance to pole along the small river that runs through Cambridge. Then the whole group enjoyed a delicious meal at St. John’s Chophouse. We settled on the lawns of St. John’s college to digest our food as we watched Shakespeare’s The Tempest. The play wrapped up another varied and interesting day with SIBF.

-Shaun Majumdar, son of Rajjina Singh and Sareet Majumdar (FL, '12)

Cambridge Money & Responsibility 2016: Day Four

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On Wednesday we started the day off with budgets, taxes and inflation. This was one of my favorite talks because it relates to anyone if they want to be involved in finances as a career or not, because they're life skills that aren't taught at school. We then listened about human trafficking which exposed me to the unfortunate tragedies that I don't have to experience every day because my parent's decided to come to America. We ended the lectures with one about neurons and this was by far my favorite "off topic" lecture. Dr. Coles told us that our brain makes decisions and then alerts our conscious. Which really made us think about if we're really making our decisions! He also explained that our conscious is active in the learning part of doing something, but after that your brain goes into autopilot. This blew my mind because it relates to neural networks in machine learning, and the day to day things I do all the time like driving. I ended the day with my friends I made on this trip and we explored the town of Cambridge!

- Ozair Patel, son of Maqbool and Tanveer Patel (AL, '11)