Summer 2016

Thank you to everyone who contributed announcements and updates regarding the great things happening at Rutgers Business School both personally and professionally. If I’ve missed a recent highlight, please contact me so I can include it in our next issue! – Luke Greeley

The newsletter is divided into the following sections listed below. The sections and newsletter content appears in no particular order – we are proud of all these great things happening in our community!


Faculty and Staff Accomplishments

Terri Kurtzberg, associate professor in the Management and Global Business Department, is the recipient of the Rutgers Warren I. Susman Award for Excellence in Teaching for the academic year 2015-2016. This award is the university’s highest honor for innovative teaching and mentoring and recognizes those who provide “outstanding service in stimulating and guiding the intellectual development of students at Rutgers University.”

Terri has taught business management courses at the undergraduate, graduate, and EMBA levels, and she has excelled with all audiences. She continuously strives to employ innovative, novel and engaging approaches in business education with great success, and she works hard to keep the course material relevant to the current business environment. Terri has even written her own case when she did not find adequate material available in the literature. She strongly embodies all of the qualities this award recognizes and honors.

Atif Ikram, instructor of professional practice, has won the Newark Student Government Association’s 2016 award for Most Valuable Professor. Atif was recognized by MBA students as well, receiving the Best/Favorite Professor award at the MBA Gala.

Jonathan Eckstein, a professor of Management Science & Information Systems, is the 2016 recipient of the Rutgers My Mark Award, which recognizes an exceptional faculty or staff member who has "made their mark" by creating a positive impact in the Rutgers community and the world at large. The award, which was voted by the student captains of the recent Mark Conference supported by Rutgers’ Office of Leadership and Experiential Learning in the Division of Student Affairs, is given in appreciation for efforts to impact the community positively and leave students inspired. Jonathan was recognized for his teaching and his lead role in starting the BAIT major. The My Mark Award is given to one individual professional, one student organization, and one individual student each year.

Additionally Jonathan and his wife Bonnie Schultz have recently signed a textbook contract with John Wiley and Sons for a textbook entitled Introduction to Relational Database Design with Microsoft Access. The manuscript is based on Jonathan’s experience teaching management information systems during the past 20 years.

Sheema Mirchandani and Sam Adhikari, instructors of profession practice in Management Science & Information Systems, have been invited to Stanford University to present on Big Data Applications for Medicine at the Big Data in Biomedicine Conference 2016.

Sam Adhikari was also recently invited as a prestigious CASP selector for his expertise in Big Data Analytics and statistical/machine learning. Critical Assessment of protein Structure Prediction, or CASP, is a community-wide, worldwide experiment for protein structure prediction taking place every two years since 1994. At the conclusion of this event in Cancun (Riviera Maya), Mexico, Protein Journal (impact factor: 3.39) has invited and accepted the following paper: “Assessment of Template-Based Modeling of Protein Structure in CASP11: Sam Adhikari, Roland Dunbrack,” PROTEINS: Structure, Function, and Bioinformatics Journal. Additionally, Sam Adhikari has been invited by the East Virginia Chapter of Institute of Supply Chain Management (ISM) to deliver an invited lecture on Supply Chain Metrics & Vendor Performance Management.

Endre Boros, distinguished professor in the Management Science and Information Systems Department, was elected in May to be an external member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

Danielle Warren, associate professor of Management & Global Business, was named one of two finalists for Business Ethics Quarterly’s “Best Article Award for 2015” for a piece titled, "When Ethical Tones at the Top Conflict: Adapting Priority Rules to Reconcile Conflicting Tones." The paper was co-authored by two former RBS PhD students Marietta Peytcheva (AIS) and Joe Gaspar (MGB).

Charles Brown, assistant dean for the Office of Diversity Programs, recently received a written commendation from Rutgers University President Robert Barchi’s Office recognizing the work of our Office of Diversity Programs and efforts around educational access with students from underrepresented minority backgrounds. Specifically mentioned in the commendation was the positive narrowing of the graduate rate gap between White and African-American students.

Andrea Cunnell, assistant director for external relations, was elected to the role of president for the Newark Museum Business and Community Council beginning June for the 2016-2017 year.

Ron Shapiro, assistant professor of professional practice in the Finance & Economics Department, served as moderator the Traditional Lenders Panel at the 2016 Conference of Mortgage Bankers Associations which was held in March in Atlantic City. Ron is a former Board Governor of the New Jersey Mortgage Bankers Association.

John Muth, academic counselor in the New Brunswick Undergraduate Program, has published his first book entitled, A Love for Lavender Dragons. One reviewer had this to say about the book: “Muth turns the ordinary inside out and does it with such wicked glee you don’t want the book to end…Certainly, these deft poems leave Muth readers laughing at and pondering love and life in the 21st Century.”

John has previously published several works of poetry in journals such as Asinine Poetry, Drown in My Own Fears, Section 8 Magazine, and The Stray Branch.

At the Annual Awards Banquet for the Rutgers Newark College of Arts and Sciences on May 4, Kevin Riordan, (NCAS, '78) of the Center for Real Estate at RBS, was presented with the 2016 Distinguished Alumni Service Award.

The “We are Rutgers Business School Strategy & Vision Book” won first place in the Garden State Journalist Association’s Public Relations Publications category. Congratulations to Dan Stoll and our communications team!

Mary Ann Albanese, administrator for the MBA program in Newark, recently completed her 30th year walking in the March for Babies (formally March of Dimes). Mary Ann has admirably represented RBS in this endeavor, working tirelessly to raise money and encourage participation among colleagues and the community.

Melissa Jackson, project manager for Rutgers Advanced Institute for the Study of Entrepreneurship and Development, recently earned her Project Management Professional certification. Melissa joined the RBS team in February, but had been with Rutgers for four years previously – welcome aboard Melissa!

Humberto Patorniti, former CEO of Dosxo Mexico and an instructor in the EMBA program, shared this photo of the 2016 IEMBA Singapore class. Students are holding copies of “Managers, Can you hear me Now,” a book written by Denny Strigl, a former CEO at Verizon Wireless and an instructor of corporate strategy at RBS. The book was used in Patorniti’s class and the students found it to be quite valuable.

Family Accomplishments

Brennan Price, the son of Kathleen Price, who is an adviser in the MBA office in New Brunswick, has been drafted to the MLB team the Milwaukee Brewers. Congratulations to the Price family on this amazing achievement!

John Longo’s wife, Dr. Kimberly Morel, a dermatologist at Columbia University-New York Presbyterian Hospital, was recently named one of the top doctors in the NY Metro area by Castle Connolly.

Charlotte Barcas, administrative coordinator for the NJSBDC, celebrated the graduation of her daughter, Meagan Bethavas, who completed her bachelor’s in linguistics at Rutgers New Brunswick and will heading to California State University in Long Beach to begin a master’s program in linguistics. Charlotte’s other daughter, Nicole Bethavas, also recently completed her second master’s degree in Global Affairs from NYU (her first masters was in Social Work).

Helen Pensavalle, administrator for the Undergraduate New Brunswick program, is proud to report her daughter, Lauren Pensavalle, has graduated from the School of Nursing-New Brunswick program with honors.

Cindy McDermott-Hicks, senior department administrator in the Dean’s Office, is celebrating the graduation of her daughter, Brittany Hicks, who earned a Supply Chain degree with honors from Rutgers Business School. In addition, Brittany was the first RBS undergrad to earn her Certified Associate in Project Management certification prior before graduating.

Kevin Lyons, associate professor of professional practice, is happy to report his sons will be starting their college careers in the fall. Yannick Lyons will be attending Monmouth University and will be a member of the university’s Division I swim team. Lucien Lyons plans to attend Rutgers New Brunswick.

Kevin Johns, lecturer, is proud to report his family has just finished rebuilding their home that was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.

School Accomplishments

Congratulations to the Undergraduate Supply Chain Management program for recently being named #5 in the country by Gartner!!!

Congratulations to the Undergraduate Accounting program which was recently ranked #7 in the country by College Choice!!!

Rutgers-University Newark has been recognized as a top 40 university in supporting community college transfer and has been named to the inaugural Excellence in Community College Transfer Honor Roll by the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society ( Congratulations to Rob Kurland and our RBS-Newark undergraduate team, with special thanks to Julia Conroy for managing and supporting students transferring to RBS from community colleges, which greatly contributed toward the national recognition.

Bloomberg’s 2016 Best Undergraduate Business Schools ranking has just been released, and I am pleased to share that the RBS-Undergraduate Newark program moved up 31 spots to number 97 on the list ( The Bloomberg rankings are based on employer feedback (40 percent), student satisfaction (35 percent), starting salary (15 percent) and internships (10 percent). Congratulations to Rob Kurland, Wanda Mendez and the entire RBS-Undergraduate Newark team on this great news!!!

Competition Results

RBS-New Brunswick undergraduate students earned 2nd place at Indiana University’s National Diversity Case Competition (NDCC). Carlos Vaca, Aishwarya Sharma, Jasmine Baptiste and Carmen Navas traveled to Kelley School of Business with Donna Brancato as their adviser and competed against 140 students from 35 universities. This year’s case posed the question: “As a buyer or financial analyst within the Target style business, how would you develop a strategy that stands for style and acknowledges Target’s support for the LGBT community?” Congratulations to our student team and thank you to Donna Brancato and to professors Leon Fraser, Douglas Miller, Paul Goldsworthy and Jaideep Vaidya for their time and expertise in serving as advisers to the team!

A team of Rutgers MBA students won 3rd Place in the National Deloitte Supply Chain Challenge in Atlanta, GA, on Feb. 12, 2016. The RBS team included Matthew Watters, Rahul Sharma, Abhay Singh, and Hailun Yu. The RBS team was advised by Professor Tom York, and supported by Professors Eric Larson, Rudi Leuschner, and many faculty and staff members of the SCM Department.

On Friday, April 1, our RU-N Undergraduate team hosted the first NJ County College Case Competition (NJC4). Co-sponsored by Merrill Lynch, the goal of the event was to provide county college students from diverse backgrounds and disciplines an opportunity to collaborate, network and demonstrate their talent, knowledge and skills to a panel of expert judges as they solved a real-world business problem. Thank you to our entire RBS-N Undergraduate team, especially Rob Kurland, Julia Conroy, Kathy Wagner, Joe Markert, the steering committee, all those who helped managing the event and moderated workshops, our faculty members who served as judges or panelists, our many student volunteers, our distinguished industry judges, our RBS Communications team, and Merrill Lynch for their generous sponsorship.

The second annual Rutgers Big Ten Plus Supply Chain Dual Challenge took place on April 1. This year's case theme was Supply Chain Finance. The participating Big Ten B-schools included Indiana, Iowa, Ohio State, Maryland, Penn State, Purdue, Wisconsin, and Rutgers, as well as the business schools at the University of Arkansas, Northeastern, Pittsburgh, Rider, Stevens and Syracuse.

The RBS team was the first place winner for the MBA case competition! In addition, the RBS MBA team, consisting of Rebecca King, Matthew Watters, Anupriti Warade, and Jagadish Mahendran, won the Best in Competition Award. Matthew Watters was also honored with the Most Professional Presenter award. Thank you to the Rutgers SCM Center Board for their generous support, Dell for its sponsorship of the first place prize, J&J for hosting the awards dinner at their World Headquarters, our distinguished industry judges, and our faculty/staff, including Rudi Leuschner, Alok Baveja, John Impellizzeri, Eric Larson, Tom York, Rachel Babich, and the entire SCM Department and the MBA team for their strong support.

Four RBS undergraduate marketing students placed first in the Kohl's Invitational Case Competition Social Media Challenge. Chosen from more than 75 teams who competed in the preliminary round through a video submission, the team, RU Suited, with members Laura Ali, Amy Finkelstein, Sonam Patel and Kairavi Shah, along with adviser Professor Michael Pennella, traveled to Kohl’s Innovation Center in Milwaukee and competed in the semi-finals against teams from 11 other universities. In addition to creating a comprehensive business plan to increase Kohl's appeal to the 18- 24-year-old demographic, the 12 semi- finalist teams from around the country also participated in the "Social Media Challenge," in which teams could use Twitter, Instagram and other forms of social media to promote their team and keep a panel of judges from Kohl's updated on their progress with the case. After four months of tweeting, posting, and gaining followers, RU Suited was awarded the top prize in the Social Media Challenge.

I am very pleased to announce that the joint RBS-Bloustein team won the NAIOP Real Estate Case Study Competition, beating out teams from New York University and Monmouth University. The winning prize was $5,000 for the students. The RBS-Bloustein team worked under the direction of Professor David Listokin at Bloustein and Professor Kevin Riordan at RBS. Both Kevin and David worked very hard toward the success of this competition and went way beyond the call of duty in helping the teams plan and execute the case. The teams had to propose a development project on a challenging four-acre parcel in Jersey City owned by John Kushner and zoned for industrial use. The Monmouth team proposed an indoor shooting range and the NYU team proposed a 500 room child-themed hotel. The winning RBS–Bloustein team proposed a modest 62 room golf–themed hotel to take advantage of two spectacular world-class golf courses located within a few miles of the site, while preserving the redevelopment option.

Congratulations to our student Rob Stern (concentration in Real Estate), Bloustein School students Himadri Kundu, Deepnath Majumder and Richard Asirifi, and especially, to Morris and his team! A nice photo of the winning team:

Three Rutgers students won the top prize of $50,000 in the 2016 U.S. Department of Energy-sponsored business pitch competition. On April 22, the three Rutgers students – Ryan Annibali (MBA, 2016), Antoni Milewski (MBA, 2016), and David Talarico (Rutgers School of Engineering) – delivered a 10-minute pitch about a proposed wind-harvesting business, an idea originally conceived by David Talarico. They competed against five other teams, including ones from Princeton, the University of Delaware and New Jersey Institute of Technology. A panel of investors and entrepreneurs selected the Rutgers team’s project as the winner. The students were teamed up in their Collaborative for Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization (CTEC) course, which is cross-listed with the School of Engineering and focused on taking ideas and new technologies to market. CTEC is a new RBS initiative led by Profs. Ted Baker and Roger Debo, who partnered with Prof. Stephen Tse from the School of Engineering on the course. For more information on the competition and CTEC, please see

This past March, Rutgers Enactus, a chapter of the international Enactus organization founded in 2014, competed in the Enactus Regional competition for the first time and won Regional Champions. The students won $1000 and moved forward to compete in the National competition in St. Louis, MO. This Monday, the Rutgers team presented their projects in the Enactus National Exposition and won 2nd in their league, winning a trophy and $1000 for their projects. This places Rutgers in the top 10% of U.S. chapters. The National Exposition is a 3-day event focused on sustainability and entrepreneurial action where 120 Regional champions in the country compete in front of top executive judges from companies such as KMPG, Unilever, PepsiCo, and Coca Cola, among many others. The winner is the team who has made the most impact with their projects. Among the 12 students in the Rutgers Enactus Team, 11 of them are our RBS students! Thank you to Gino Gentile and Leigh-Anne Cobb, Enactus advisors, and congratulations to the Enactus student team members

RBS Internal Awards 2016

The Staff Excellence Awards are designed to recognize and reward exemplary achievements in job performance and afford us the opportunity to thank staff members who have consistently made a substantial positive impact on Rutgers Business School. 

The 2016 Staff Excellence Awards were presented at the April 29 Staff Retreat.
The winners are:
• Cheryl Daniels – Program Coordinator, Finance and Economics
• Michelle Tomitz – Administrative Assistant, NB UG Student Services
• Sadee Braithwaite – Administrative Assistant, Marketing
• Georgia Sumpter – Administrative Assistant , Executive MBA
• Brian Williams – Counselor, Graduate Student Services- Newark
• Kerstin Schnatter – Assistant Dean, NB UG
• Jasmine Cordero – Managing Director, CUEED

Junior Faculty Research Excellence Award
This award is given to a junior TT faculty member whose research quality and productivity are evaluated as most promising and most likely to help RBS achieve greater visibility and academic prominence. The winners were selected by the RBS Research Resources Committee.

• Rose Liao
• Lian Qi (SCM)

Dean’s Meritorious Research Award

These awards are given to faculty members of any rank whose research quality and productivity over the past three years are evaluated as most significant and have positively impacted RBS in the quest for greater visibility and academic prominence. The winners were selected by the RBS Research Resources Committee.

• Simi Kedia
• Daniel Levin (MGB)
• Oliver Sheldon (MGB)
• Jaideep Vaidya (MSIS)
• Hui Xiong (MSIS)
• Ben Melamed (SCM)

Junior Faculty Teaching Excellence Award
This award is given to a junior TT faculty member whose teaching performance is evaluated as most exemplary and likely to help RBS achieve higher student and alumni satisfaction and business-school rankings. The winners were selected by the RBS Teaching Methods and Innovations Committee.

• Sara Parker

Dean’s Meritorious Teaching Award
These awards are given to faculty members of any rank (TT or NTT) whose teaching performance over the past three years is evaluated as most exemplary and has likely helped RBS to achieve higher student and alumni satisfaction and business-school rankings. The winners were selected by the RBS Teaching Methods and Innovations Committee.

• Steve Dym
• Farrokh Langdana (FE)
• Ben Sopranzetti (FE)
• Jim Winder (FE)
• Daniel Levin (MGB)
• Marc Kalan (MKTG)
• Yao Zhao (SCM)

Dean’s Meritorious Service Award
These awards are given to faculty members of any rank (TT or NTT) whose service contributions over the past three years are evaluated as most exemplary and have likely helped RBS to achieve higher student and alumni satisfaction, business-school rankings, and better external and corporate relations. The winners were selected by the RBS Board of Advisors.

• Ivan Brick (FE)
• Dan Weaver (FE)
• Yangru Wu (FE)
• Arturo Osorio (MGB)
• Can Uslay (MKTG)
• Sam Adhikari (MSIS)
• Eugene Spiegle (SCM)

Dean’s Meritorious Award for Nationally Prominent Professional Activities
These awards are given to faculty members of any rank (TT or NTT) who have demonstrated strong leadership in Nationally Prominent Professional Activities, whose efforts have led to or facilitated a significant knowledge transfer from academia to industry, and whose work is likely to help RBS to be nationally recognized as a transformational leader in business education. The winners were selected by the RBS Board of Advisers.

• Miklos Vasarhelyi (AIS)
• Michael Crew (FE)

Dean’s Meritorious Award for Outstanding Contribution to the RBX Initiatives

This special award recognizes a faculty who has made a significant contribution toward the development of RBS Digital Initiatives and whose effort has led to innovations in RBS online education. The winner was selected by the RBS Dean’s Office.

• Hussein Issa