School of Business Newsletter December 2021 Visit
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Welcome from the Dean

Greetings from the School of Business at Emporia State! In so many ways, this has been an unusual semester with the optimism of “back to normal” followed by the realities that we are not quite there yet. However, as we complete our third semester with Covid, I continue to be amazed by the resiliency of our students. We have students with grit and determination, and I couldn’t be more proud to be their Dean! 

Even though this semester was still not 100% normal, we nevertheless had many opportunities to cheer for, share in, and support our many student, faculty, and alumni accomplishments.

We are so proud of the work our Hornets do, both inside and outside of Cremer Hall. I hope you read this newsletter and feel the same pride I do for our fantastic school. Please keep us updated on your professional achievements.

Mark your calendars for the upcoming commencement ceremonies at White Auditorium, 111 E. Sixth Ave. in Emporia.

Stay Healthy, and Go Hornets!

Ed Bashaw, Ph.D., Dean and Jones Distinguished Professor


Bobbi and Steve Sauder Center for Entrepreneurial Development
A ribbon cutting and Chamber Business After Hours were held on October 14. The Bobbi & Steve Sauder Center for Entrepreneurial Development, located on the second floor of Cremer Hall, is used to facilitate high-impact learning for students wanting to launch their own start-up business.

"The Bobbi and Steve Sauder Center for Entrepreneurial Development will likely have the longest lasting impact on the Emporia economy as the lasting legacy of this center will be the businesses built that add to the economic vibrancy of our city," says Dr. Ed Bashaw, Dean. "On either side of the entrepreneurial space are the Small Business Development Center and Studio E, a student advertising collective. All three work together to serve student startups, in some manner. We thank Bobbi and Steve Sauder for their generous gift that enabled this Center."

Bobbi & Steve Sauder Center for Entrepreneurial Development Ribbon Cutting Videos:
Part 1
Part 2

Preston Family Student Complex Ribbon Cutting October 21
Community members and campus faculty and staff celebrated the completion of the Preston Family Student Complex with a ribbon cutting on October 21. The Complex is located in the lower level of Cremer Hall. It will be the student lounge by day and will play host to club meetings (room for about 50 or so participants) and offer space for the clubs to permanently store their gear. With the completion of this student area, the Complex, which includes the BizHornet Center across the hall, is complete. Trustees Dr. John Rich and Sandy Fleming cut the ribbon to celebrate the new student lounge funded by the William and Aloha Preston Family Trust. 

"The Preston Family Student Complex completes the public facing renovation of Cremer Hall," said Dr. Ed Bashaw. "This is a critical piece as the space will be primarily used for student clubs associated with the School of Business. We thank the Preston Family trustees Dr. John Rich and Sandy Fleming for working with us on this project and for the foresight of the late William and Aloha Preston." Click here for the video of the ribbon cutting.

Supervisory Training Course
This 21-hour certificate course teaches basic management skills. It is a seven-week program, which meets one day each week (face-to-face or virtual) for three hours in Cremer Hall. Seven faculty cover the following topics: Management, Operations, Teamwork, Conflict Resolution, Communication, Leadership, and Legal Aspects of Management. This offering gives employees incredible insights to become great leaders and supervisors as our classes include practical solutions. Professionals from different fields—banking, manufacturing, restaurants, and even local entities—share their real-life knowledge and experiences. The most recent course was held September 9 – October 21 and had 21 students from 8 businesses.

Interested in attending our next Supervisory Training Course which begins February 24, 2022?

Please email or call 620-803-8865.

ESU Student Placed First at National Competition
Ashley Rietcheck took first place, with four other ESU students picking up top 10 finishes during the 2021 Phi Beta Lambda National Leadership Conference, held virtually June 24–27. With a total of seven top 10 finishes, Emporia State students brought home the most awards of any other Kansas university in attendance.

There were 871 attendees and 704 competitors who attended. During the event, participants could interact with workshops, listen to keynote speakers, watch presentations by corporations, and witness recognition of outstanding individuals and chapters. Click here to read the full story.

PBL Leadership Conference
Phi Beta Lambda (PBL) was invited to attend a Fall Leadership Conference held at the Omaha Zoo, October 21-22, 2021. PBL groups from North Dakota, Colorado, Kansas, and Nebraska met for networking, leadership, and learning. This high-impact experience was highlighted by the wide variety of speakers from different business fields, including data analytics, management, marketing, and human resources. We toured Sandhills Global, in Lincoln, Nebraska, which is a privately held information processing company. Sandhills Global processes publications and websites dedicated to selling items in the heavy equipment, agriculture, aviation, and trucking industry worldwide. The second stop was Vala’s Pumpkin Patch for networking, fun, and food. The final event was the Leadership Conference at the Omaha Zoo. At this event, we listened to great speakers, participated in leadership activities, and for lunch had the opportunity to network with business representatives around Omaha and Lincoln. All the members had a great experience and enjoyed the chance to travel as well as networking. 

Studio E Open for Business
Studio E is an on-campus marketing and advertising collective located in the Bobbi and Steve Sauder Center for Entrepreneurial Development within the School of Business. The student director for Studio E is 2021 ESU graduate Kolton Hall, who is currently in the MBA Program.

Studio E is centered around the practice of inspiring students by supplying real-world opportunities to apply the knowledge gained inside of the classroom. Any individual, regardless of major, could become an asset to the growing team of students currently involved.

“Studio E provides a variety of marketing services to an array of local clients while simultaneously providing real-world opportunities to the next generation of professional practitioners,” says Kolton.

This initiative, relaunched in Fall of 2021 after a two-year hiatus because of COVID-19, has been a significant success thus far. Studio E focuses on offering affordable marketing and advertising solutions for local businesses in or around Emporia. Services offered include, but are not limited to, marketing research, graphic design, social media marketing, taglines, copywriting, as well as content writing and audio/jingle recordings.

Businesses interested in taking a closer look into hiring Studio E are encouraged to contact Kolton Hall at or by phone at 620-341-5400 to set up a meeting.

We thank ESU alumni Lynette and Dan Murphy for their continued support of this initiative through a multi-year commitment to provide scholarships for students.

Lockton University Day
School of Business students participated in Lockton University Day in Kansas City on October 28. Lockton is the world’s largest privately held, independent insurance broker. Teresa Martin (Lockton Executive VP/Producer & ESU alumna) is pictured with the participants.

At Lockton University Day, the students were given the opportunity to learn about various opportunities available at Lockton including internship and career opportunities. They heard from current employees about their stories, the recruiting team about their processes, and executives about the history of Lockton and what they do. The students were also given the chance to network with several different individuals at every level of the company.

One of our goals at the School of Business is to provide these high-impact learning experiences because the results are so positive. For instance, one of our students that attended is currently interviewing for their Associate Account Manager Program because of the networking she had during the visit. 

Hornet Hills Open
Hornet Hills, ESU’s new disc golf course, is now open. Thank you to Dynamic Discs and owner Jeremy Rusco (BSB 06-Business Administration), for making this course possible and a big shout-out to business student Jacob Pittenger for being the first to submit the winning name. 
Alumni Career Announcements & Retirements


Gabriela R. Aguero Levi
(BSB 19-Marketing), Asuncion, Paraguay, is the new partner account manager at Commercient.

Fahad A. Alotaibi (BSB 17-Information Systems), Emporia, was promoted to cyber security analyst at Elm Company.

Megan L. Brobst (MACC 20-Accountancy), Hiawatha, recently opened Brobst Accounting LLC in downtown Hiawatha.

Dr. Brett L. Bruner (BSB 06-Business Administration), Russellville, Ark., will be the new assistant vice president for Student Affairs & Enrollment Management/Dean of Students at Missouri Western State University in Saint Joseph, Mo.

Joseph A. Dempewolf (BSB 11-Business Administration), Topeka, is the new assistant general counsel at Wichita State University.

Audra A. (Rieck) Kosinski (BSB 04-Business Administration), Overland Park, recently left her 21-year career in transportation to open a Farmers Insurance Agency in Overland Park.

Tim R. Randall (BSB 92-Business Administration), Bonner Springs, recently accepted a position as senior resolution manager with James A Gallagher Insurance.

Jordan M. (Foutch) Schlingensiepen (BSB 15-Information Systems), Topeka, is a new software developer at Federal Home Loan Bank of Topeka.

Matt A. Smiley (BSB 01-Business Administration), Overland Park, is a new senior partnership leader/business development manager at ESIS, Inc.

Penny M. (Hatch) Spence (BSB 98-Finance), Stilwell, was recently promoted to executive vice president and chief financial officer at Stowers Institute for Medical Research.

Rick Tasker (BS 95- Business Administration), Castle Rock, Colo., was hired by Splunk to lead channel partner enablement as the Global Partner Productivity Manager.

Michael A. Webb (BSB 19-Management), Washington, D.C., has been hired as a consultant at FSG Consulting, based in the Washington, D.C. office.


Reginald M. DePass (BSB 74-Business Administration), San Diego, Calif., retired after 24 years as the director of finance for Feaster Charter School.

Kathy Dreier (AS 82-Office Services), Americus, retired after 27 years from USD 253 Emporia.

Concha (Jasso) Duarte (BSB 78-Business), Ann Arbor, Mich., retired in January 2021 after 41 years of working in various areas of DCI, a bank software company in Hutchinson, Kansas.
Alumni Awards
Congratulations to the following alumni for being named to the 2021 Class of Ingram's 250! They are 3 of the 250 most influential and powerful business executives and leaders throughout the Greater Kansas City Region: Mayra Aguirre (BSB 03-Management); Ed Eilert (BSB 61-Business Education; MS 62-Business Education), and Craig Kuckelman (BSB 91-Accounting)

Retired U.S. Army Col. Guy C. Beougher (BS 80-Business Administration), McLean, Va., has been named one of the US Army Quartermaster Corps Hall of Fame inductees for 2020.

Teresa L. Clounch (BSB 89-Business Administration; MS 96-Counselor Education), Hays, was inaugurated into the Cheryl Gleason KAY Leadership Camp Staff Hall of Fame.

Dr. Cathy A. Grover (BSB 86-Business Administration, BS 86-Psychology, MS 88-Psychology), Americus, Associate Professor of Psychology, was recently named the 2020-21 King Endowed Professor at ESU.

Eric A. Porter (BSB 12-Business Administration), Emporia, vice president of commercial lending at ESB Financial, was recently named one of the 40 under 40: Emerging Community Bank Leaders by Independent Banker Magazine.

David G. "Dave" Rockers (BSE 82-Business Education), Carthage, Mo., was the Missouri Administrator of the Year and was a national finalist for Administrator of the Year from the Missouri Association of Career and Technical Education Association.

Troy A. Ross (BSB 09-Business Administration) ,Manhattan, is the owner of CR Tire & Automotive, which has been named the 2021 Emerging Business of the Year by the Kansas Small Business and Development Center.

Matt H. Strathman (BSB 83-Marketing), Topeka, was inducted into the Topeka Business Hall of Fame in March 2022.

Timothy L. "Tim" Werth (BSB 12-Finance), Hays, was ranked as the Number 2 Wealth Advisor in Kansas by Forbes in its Best-In-State Advisor List. He was also ranked Fourth Best Advisor in Kansas by Barron's.

To learn more about the Together, Forward campaign, click on the image above.

Faculty Awards
Dr. Tanja Steigner’s article, “Learning in Serial Mergers: Evidence From a Global Sample,” was published by the Journal of Business Finance and Accounting.

Drs. Douglass Smith and Jeffery Muldoon’s article, "Covid-19 and Its Impact on Venture Pitching Competitions in Higher Education: A Case Study," was published in the August 9, 2021, edition of Small Enterprise Research. The subject matter provides engaging, relevant, and timely content.

Drs. Douglass Smith and Will Senn have an abstract submission entitled, “Social Media Discourse: An Analysis of Student’s Political Viewpoint’s and their Influence on Social Media Behavior” that was presented at the Decision Sciences Institute 52nd Annual Conference in November, 2021.

Dr. Danya Mi will be presenting a paper titled "Social Media Analyst Coverage of Socially Responsible Firms" at the American Accounting Association annual meeting. Additionally, this paper has been presented at 2021 Spark, the accounting regional meetings and workshopped at Brigham Young University. At 2021 Spark, she also presented a paper titled "Executive Relative Performance Evaluations and Financial Analyst Forecasting Behavior."

Congratulations to Dr. George Durler, faculty emeritus, who was named a "2021 Outstanding Faculty Advisor" by the Beta Alpha Psi national office. Listen to Dr. Durler's remarks at marker 6:34 in the announcement video:  

School of Business ESU Diversity Lectures

Last year the DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) committee for the School of Business started a video series, which featured two of our own Drs. Jeffery Muldoon and Marian Riedy, sharing their expertise through the lens of DEI.

Dr. Muldoon’s presentation:  
Dr. Riedy’s presentation  

Congratulations to Dr. Jeffery Muldoon on his several accomplishments this semester:
  • Selected to present in the Competitive and Emerging Research Papers Track at USASBE 2022: Pioneer and Persevere next January.
  • Keynote speaker at the International Conference of Researchers in Management, which took place virtually in Bogotá, Colombia, on November 23rd and 24th, 2021. Dr. Muldoon presented “Research Through International Networks: Experiences and Learned Lessons to Consolidate Academic Communities.”
  • Outstanding Reviewer in the 2021 Emerald Literati Awards, selected by the editorial team of Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development. 

Click here for our School of Business Directory

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