Alumni Society Board
UM-Dearborn Alumni Society is a non-dues paying society serving all UM-Dearborn graduates.
UM-Dearborn's Alumni Society Board supports and advises the Office of Alumni Engagement on best practices and strategies to strengthen relationships and engagement between UM-Dearborn alumni, future UM-Dearborn alumni, and UM-Dearborn. They help cultivate new alumni support (via time, talent, and treasure) for UM-Dearborn, generate a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout all aspects of the Board's composition and initiatives, and assist in coordinating and collaborating assets and/or services available through UM-Dearborn and the Alumni Association of the University of Michigan.
To learn more about how you can become involved, please contact the Office of Alumni Engagement at email@example.com or 313-593-5131.
Kevin Moisan, chair of the UM-Dearborn Alumni Society Board, is currently working on-site at Meta supporting their labs organization. Previously, he worked at AT&T for over 35 years, retiring in 2019. He worked in both technical (Lead Member of Technical Staff) and management (Director) positions. He worked, primarily, in the San Francisco Bay Area of California but spent five years in New Jersey (1987-1992). Kevin holds three patents. He attended the University of Michigan-Dearborn (1978-1982) graduating with a Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering. In 1991, Kevin received a Master’s in Computer Science from Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, NJ (1991). Kevin currently resides with his wife, Kathleen, in Castro Valley, CA. They have a daughter, Clare, a recent graduate of the University of California-Davis.
Garry Cole graduated with a B.S.A. from the University of Michigan-Dearborn in 1979, a time when some of the classes were held in trailers but the spirit and excellence in learning were all Blue. After enjoying a successful sales & marketing career at large companies - Carnation and Pepsico, Garry launched a boutique Ad Agency serving clients such as Pepsi, A&W Restaurants, HoneyBaked Ham, and Guardian Industries. Currently, he is providing strategic support for a number of clients as Vice President of Client Solutions for SSDM, a digital marketing agency based in Troy Michigan. Although Garry considers his work status as "semi-retired" he fills his days with consulting opportunities, travel, writing, being a board member of The Legacy Medical Foundation, and continuous learning - taking online classes from some of the greatest universities in the world, including, of course, the University of Michigan.
Dr. Tim Constant is the Lead Instructional Coach for Clarenceville School District in Livonia, Michigan, and a national education program facilitator for Echoes and Reflections, an educational program from the Anti-Defamation League. In addition to serving on the University of Michigan-Dearborn Alumni Society Board, he is a board member for the Michigan Council for the Social Studies where he serves as the chair of the Michigan Social Studies Olympiad and is a member of the Royal Oak Schools Curriculum Advisory Committee. Dr. Constant previously served as an upper elementary, middle, and high school principal, assistant principal, and director in Hamtramck, Southfield, and Detroit. Prior to becoming a school administrator, he was an award-winning Social Studies and English Language Arts teacher for 11 years in Detroit, Southfield, and Warren. Dr. Constant received his Master of Arts in Teaching in 2004 and his Doctor of Education in 2022 from the University of Michigan-Dearborn.
John Economy has been a hands-on operational entrepreneur for the past 20 years. One of John’s first endeavors was Argo Import-Export, with offices in both Detroit and Shanghai. In addition to Argo, John is currently a Managing Partner at America’s Green Line, a WBENC LED lighting company, headquartered in Detroit. With his success within the LED space, John has gone on to diversify himself further, focusing on the research and development of new green technologies and energy-efficient products and applications. John’s focus and expertise has been in sales, global manufacturing and importing. John graduated from the University of Michigan-Dearborn, where he received a B.A. in Political Science in 2001. John is a world traveler and an avid University of Michigan sports fanatic. Outside of work and family, John is an advocate for inner city youth advancement, emphasizing education and organized athletics.
Paul S. Funk joins the Alumni Society Board with over 25 years of experience as an entrepreneur and executive consultant to business, government, and nonprofit organizations. Currently, he is the chief executive connector at Paul S. Funk LLC where Paul plans for, organizes, markets, and executes various kinds of networking and fundraising events to connect professionals. Paul is a 1978 graduate of the University of Michigan-Dearborn earning a Bachelor of Science in Engineering (B.S.E.) in Mathematics and Mechanical Engineering.
Michael Gillespie is currently the Director of the Faculty Development and Innovation Center and is Professor of Sociology at Eastern Illinois University. As director, Michael oversees the professional development of new and continuing faculty members, designs and develops workshops and webinars on teaching and learning, facilitates mentoring programs, and consults on best practices in pedagogy, assessment, and learning innovations for face-to-face and online courses. He has received multiple campus teaching awards and grants and has been recognized by the provost’s office as an emerging leader on campus. Michael’s teaching and research on poverty, food insecurity, and social welfare has led to the opening of a university-sponsored food pantry on EIU’s campus for students, staff, and faculty. He has also been active with community-based anti-poverty and anti-hunger organizations, Habitat for Humanity, and the local public health department board. Michael received his bachelor’s in Sociology at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, a master’s in Social Work from the University of Michigan, and a doctorate in Sociology from Western Michigan University.
Jeff Gordon, '68 B.B.A., is a first generation American and Detroit native. While a student at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, he participated in the co-op program and worked at American Airlines. After graduation, he volunteered with the Peace Corps, setting up supermarkets in India. Returning to the States during the recession of 1971, Jeff consulted with the UM-Dearborn placement office and obtained his first job which began his food industry experience. Jeff’s 34-year career in Michigan was as a Manufacturers’ Representative, food broker, during which he served on many of his clients’ advisory boards. Later, he became the Marketing Manager then Market Developer for a food service distributor serving the Mid-Atlantic states. Jeff completed his successful career in Washington, DC as the owner of Searidge Sales and Marketing. His commitment to service includes his membership on the Board of Iona Senior Services, a non-profit, in Washington, DC. In addition to supporting the new UM-Dearborn Engineering Lab Building, Jeff is a strong believer in our Get to Graduation Fund. Retired, he currently lives in Washington, DC with his wife Beth McGarry.
Sonya Grant is the President and CEO of WorkSource Cobb, Cobb County’s workforce development agency which provides access to a system of employment and education services for residents and employers in the state of Georgia. Sonya graduated from the University of Michigan-Dearborn where she received a B.A. in communications with a minor in political science. She launched her career after obtaining a Masters of Social Work from Wayne State University in Detroit Michigan. She honed her non-profit, public health, and workforce development skills as a community and economic development Executive Director, a Senior Project Manager for the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health, and as the Chief Operating Officer for Michigan’s third-largest workforce development agency.
Suzette Heathcote’s work experience includes projects at General Motors, Ford Motor Company, General Electric, Cooper Standard Automotive, Ally Financial, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Adient, and Johnson Controls. She earned four degrees from UM-Dearborn, starting with her bachelor’s degrees in Computer Information Science and Industrial & Systems Engineering in 1986. She was a co-operative student at Chevrolet Livonia and worked at the UM-Dearborn Engineering Office. In 1987, she proposed a Dual Masters program to UM-Dearborn and was one of the first graduates of the program while working full time. She earned master’s degrees in Industrial & Systems Engineering and in Business Administration in 1993. As a Ford Motor Company employee for 22 years, Suzette worked in Auto Safety, Computer Integration Manufacturing for Advanced Manufacturing, as an Accounting System Supervisor, the Project Management Office Supervisor for Global Application Implementation. Most recently, she was an Enterprise Information & Analytics Architect and was developing a five year Blueprint Plan of Opportunities. She proposed exploiting connected vehicle data in the inbound logistics and global delivery of vehicles and she developed innovative safety ideas to prevent accidents related to Vehicle Occupant Health and Wellness and workplace health monitoring. Suzette is also a disability advocate.
Melissa Jimenez is currently the Associate Director of Curricular Services in the Office of the Registrar at Wayne State University. She previously worked for the University of Michigan-Dearborn (2007-2019). She began her working career in higher education as an Admissions Counselor and was promoted to Assistant Director in 2013. Melissa is an active member with the Michigan Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (MACRAO). She served on UM-Dearborn’s CASL Alumni Affiliate Board (2007-2008) and in 2012 received the UM-Dearborn Exceptional Team Award. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Hispanic Studies from UM-Dearborn and her master’s degree in Public Administration in 2014. Melissa led the UM-Dearborn Alumni Society Board as Chair during the 2021-2022 academic year.
Kenneth Mac has held prominent positions such as Vice President at GM Financial and Director within General Motors’ Customer Care and Aftersales division, leading the Protection business unit since 2014. Prior to GM, Ken held various executive management positions in service sector companies including Accenture consulting, Sedgwick administrators, Ally Financial-Insurance, and the University of Michigan Medicine. His roles have been mainly in business unit leadership, corporate finance, strategic planning, internal/external consulting, and product/partner management. Ken began his corporate career in 1986 after graduating from the University of Michigan-Dearborn in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Finance. He also earned his master’s in Business Administration from Wayne State University in 1992.
David Oberstaedt has worked in numerous Human Resources leadership roles over a 22-year career with Nissan North America, Inc., which has taken him from Farmington Hills to Chicago to the company’s headquarters in Nashville. As a Human Resources Business Partner, David has supported a variety of client groups that included Engineering, Marketing & Sales, Regional Operations, Aftersales, Parts Distribution, and Vehicle/Powertrain/Battery Manufacturing. Prior to Nissan, David worked for 10 years in various HR-related roles in the retail industry and at a non-profit employers association. David is a member of the Society for Human Resources Management and maintains the Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Psychology from UM-Dearborn in 1991 and has minors in Business, Communications, and Sociology.
Julius Reeves is an engineering and business professional, entrepreneur, corporate talent scout, youth mentor, and community service activist. He has continuously worked to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of all the organizations he has been involved with. Early in his career, Julius earned the GM Fellowship award. He currently holds the position of Manager within the GM Advanced Vehicle Development organization. He leads strategic initiatives focused on developing product component forward strategies that maximize customer value and company profitability. Julius is a native Detroiter and graduate of Cass Technical High School. He has a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering / Operations Research from Wayne State University, a master’s degree in Systems Engineering from U-M Dearborn, and an MBA from the University of Chicago with finance and business strategy concentrations. Julius was awarded the Distinguished Volunteer Award in 2020 on National Philanthropy Day by Wayne State University and currently serves as the Wayne State University Engineering Alumni Board Chair. As an entrepreneur, Julius has assisted in/or led the start-up of several business ventures related to computer/information technology services, vehicle detailing services, and investing (both real estate and the stock market).
Susan Krichbaum Robertson is newly retired from a decades long career in community relations and public affairs. Her most recent position was Vice President of the Metropolitan Affairs Coalition. There she worked with a unique Board of Directors, comprised of key leaders in business, labor, government and education, to tackle public policy issues and economic development projects for the betterment of the region and state. Prior to that, she was Director of Community Relations at AAA Michigan where she managed corporate contributions, community outreach, employee volunteerism, traffic safety education and information, and a variety of communications. After a brief stint as a substitute teacher in Dearborn Public Schools, she found her niche in community affairs at the Detroit Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau, where early in her career she had the privilege of working on major civic and special events in Detroit including the 1980 Republican National Convention, Super Bowl XVI, the inaugural Grand Prix, National League of Cities, and many more. Civic involvement, volunteer activities, a strong network of community and professional contacts, integrity and hard work have been the hallmarks of her successful career. She credits Detroit Public Schools and UM-Dearborn ('75 B.A. in Psychology and Education) for a strong foundation, followed by graduate work at U-M, Central Michigan, and Boston College (Professional Certifications in Community Relations). She is currently a member of the League of Women Voters in Michigan and Florida, and works on political campaigns.
May Russell is the Chief Digital Officer at Fortune Brands Home & Security, Inc. Prior to her current role, she was the Chief Information Officer of Ford Commercial Solution LLC (Telematics, Data Services, Integrated Fleet Mgt Products) and Global Head of Connected Tech Vehicle Services (Maintenance, Security), API Platforms, AI\ML. She is charged with building a technology offering that scales with global volume and creating best in class software engineering organization. Before this role, May served as Global Delivery Head of Transportation as a Service, Digital City Solutions, Technology Monetization, and Tech Mergers & Acquisitions. Additionally, May was the Global Delivery Head of Consumer-facing emerging technologies. Before joining Ford Motor Company in 2002, May started her career with Ernst and Young after graduating from the University of Michigan-Dearborn with a Computer Science degree. As a senior consultant with Ernst and Young, she led IT transformation programs in many industries including utilities and automotive. May also holds an Executive MBA from the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan. She serves as the K-8 Chief Mission Officer for Michigan Council Women in Technology (MCWT) and serves on the advisory board of the IT Women in Leadership (ITWIL) and Midwestern Technology Leaders. In those roles she has established technology summer camps for girls, a partnership with Girls Scouts and with universities to conduct events for Girls in Tech.
Yuri Siradeghyan is a senior member of the Equities Business Management team at Millennium, a global multi-strategy hedge fund headquartered in New York. In this role, he works side-by-side with equities trading teams, overseeing risk management, portfolio construction and analytics. Before joining Millennium, Yuri held risk management and quant strategist positions at several equity funds. Prior to transitioning into finance, he was a senior developer in the Data Management, Mining and Exploration (DMX) group at Microsoft Research. At DMX, his research focused on problems in information management and analyzing rich data sets. Yuri holds a master’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Michigan-Dearborn and an MBA from Columbia Business School.
Alumni affiliates are organizations that relate to specific program areas, special interests, and/or special alumni activities that are recognized by UM-Dearborn. A member of each alumni affiliate will serve on the Board as a voting member. Learn more about alumni affiliate work here.
The following alumni affiliates are currently recognized:
African American Alumni Affiliate
Graduates of the Last Decade (GOLD) Alumni Affiliate
Keisha Jackson serves as a Federal Investigator for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission – Birmingham District (Alabama) and is charged with enforcing statutes involving employment discrimination. Prior to this, she was a Federal Judiciary Appointee for U.S. Eastern District Court – Michigan, a Processing Assistant for MDOC – Probation, and a Legal Secretary for the Michigan Office Of Administrative Hearings and Rules. Throughout her years of public service, she has always strived to incorporate the spirit of civil justice and to promote the advancement of all people; especially in academic settings. She graduated cum laude from UM-Dearborn in 2014 with her Bachelors of Arts in Criminal Justice and again in 2018; this time earning a Masters in Public Administration. Not only is she humbled to serve as one of the Co-Chairs for the African American Alumni Affiliate, but she is also excited to grow the affiliate and engage existing alumni both near and afar.
Rachel Leonard currently serves as the Advisor for Student Support Services within the TRIO Department at the University of Michigan-Dearborn. Rachel is passionate about student success, especially for students who come from low-income backgrounds or identify as first-generation. She actively volunteers with the First-Gen Student Org on UM-Dearborn's campus and assisted with establishing the "First-Gen Fan Club" which is made up of faculty, staff, and alumni who aspire to be first-gen allies. Through her student involvement at UM-Dearborn, Rachel served in several leadership roles, including as an Orientation Leader, student employee with the Alumni Engagement Office, Talent Gateway as a Talent Ambassador, President of the Opportunity Scholar Program, and as a student-athlete. Rachel is a graduate of the College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters with a degree in Communications, and serves as the Graduates of the Last Decade Alumni Affiliate co-chair.
Steve Burns is a non-voting member and is the board's liaison to the Alumni Association of the University of Michigan. He is the Director of Global Engagement at the Alumni Association where he creates, implements, and improves structured and organic opportunities for alumni to connect to their University. Prior to this role, Burns served as the Head Coach of the U-M Men's Soccer team from 1992 through the 2011 season. He earned his bachelor's degree in Aerospace Engineering in 1989 and a decade later earned a master's in Kinesiology from U-M.
Two current UM-Dearborn students represent the student voice as ex-officio members of the Board.
Austin Kipfmiller is a Junior at the University of Michigan-Dearborn studying Economics and Political Science. Austin graduated as a dual-enrolled student through the Monroe County Community College where he worked as a Writing Tutor and was awarded Student of the Year in 2019-2020. He is employed through Student Support Services in which he assists college students at the university with mentoring, accessing different campus departments, academic tutoring in multiple subjects, course planning, weekly planning, studying, and more. Austin is also enrolled in the Honors Program and a member of the Economics Club on campus. After graduating, he hopes to attend Hillsdale College for his Master’s Degree.
Josue Rios is a fourth-year marketing major. Alongside serving the Alumni community as a Student Liaison, he serves as a Marketing Intern for Experience+, and he resides as the President of Culture: The Musician’s Club. Coming from the Engaged Scholars community, Josue understands the importance of community building and campus engagement, and he hopes to bring that impact to the Alumni community.