What Our Alumni Do

Examples of alumni working in Historic Preservation

Erik Hein (2007) is the Executive Director at the National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers.

Elizabeth Natsios (2007) is a member of the Design Review Board of the College Station City Council.

Becky Berlyoung Freeman (2008) is a Senior Specialist in Historic Heritage at the Auckland Council.

Cindy Thomson (2008) is a Community Advancement Specialist at the U.S. Green Building Council.

Joanna Braswell (2009) is a Site Coordinator at Bacon’s Castle.

Anna Klosterman (2009) is a Senior Project Manager at EHT Traceries.

Emma Byrnes (2011) is a Manager of Affiliate Services at Rebuilding Together.

Sarah Groesbeck (2011) is an Architectural Historian at the Louis Berger Group.

Anne Doberteen (2012) is an Assistant Curator at the Albert H. Small Washingtoniana Collection.

Adam Rubin (2012) is a Senior Project Manager at the Rock and Roll Forever Foundation.

Tara Owens (2012) is an Assistant at the Hammond-Harwood House Museum.

Amanda Marie Varnam (2013) is working as a Museum and Institutions Professional.

Valerie Ann Hague (2013) is the Secretary of the Board of Directors at Preservation Detroit.

Melissa Swindell (2013) is the Director of Historic Resources and Education Programs at Heritage Sandy Springs.

Gillian Maguire (2013) is a Registrar at the Chemical Heritage Foundation.

Kristine Farley (2014) is the House Manager at Lefferts Historic House.

Erin Howe (2014) is an Historic Preservation Specialist at EHT Traceries.

Erin Sexton (2015) is an Archivist at History Associates Incorporated.

Caroline Spurry (2015) is an Architectural Historian at George Washington’s Mount Vernon.

Examples of alumni working in Academia

Puspita Asmara (2008) is a Student Advisor at Baltimore City Community College

Diana Dinerman (2008) is a Fifth Year PhD Student at the University of Minnesota

Kaithlyn Kayer (2008) is a Human Resources Client Partner at the George Washington University

Joanna Siegel (2008) is a Doctoral Student at the University of Pennsylvania

Alden Watts (2009) is a Professor at Tidewater Community College

Lauren Kirkpatrick (2010) is a Career Information Coordinator at the George Washington University

Kate Gaskill (2011) is a GSEHD Graduate Student

John Price (2011) is the Executive Director at the Jefferson Association

Kent Peacock (2011) is a Graduate Student and Teaching Assistant at the Department of History at Florida State University

David Bietila (2011) is the Web Program Director at the University of Chicago Library

Erin Andrews (2012) is an English student at Northwestern University

Nicholas Aszling (2012) is a High School Social Studies Teacher at Our Savior Lutheran School.

Mary Stewart (2012) is an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University.

Christopher Hayashida-Knight (2012) is a Graduate Fellow and Teaching Assistant at Penn State University.

Jeff Dagley (2012) is the Administrator for Communications and Outreach at the George Washington University Center for Career Services.

Jaclyn Glover (2012) is the Assistant Director of Stewardship and Donor Recognition at Georgetown University.

Christy McDonald (2012) is the Director of the Maryville College Career Center.

Joshua Cowan (2013) is a Student Assistant and First Year PhD Student at Texas Tech University.

Devin Proctor (2013) is a Teaching Assistant at the George Washington University.

Chelsea St. Onge-May (2013) is an Academic Associate at the Africa Center for Strategic Studies.

Jason Tercha (2013) is an Executive Assistant at the George Washington University Law School.

Mishana Garschi (2014) is a Research Assistant at Georgetown University.

Margaret Goddard (2014) is a First Year PhD Student at Brown University.

Miranda Gendel (2015) is the Associate Director of Donor Relations at the George Washington University School of Business.

Examples of alumni working in Communications and Marketing

Joshua Maak (2009) is the Director of Communications and Advocacy at The Sulphur Institute.

Sara Tenenbaum (2011) is a Digital News Producer at WLS ABC7 Chicago.

Monia Owens (2013) is the Communications Director at DC NOW.

Christina Luna (2013) is a Cultural Language Assistant at Comunidad de Madrid.

Katherine Mead (2013) is an Editor at Banford Press.

Jenna Dawkins (2014) is a Marketing Coordinator at Gallagher & Associates, LLC.

Mara Dauphin (2014) is a Media Analyst at PublicRelay.

Teng Xu (2014) is a Reporter at Voice of America.

Katherine Ericson (2014) is a Travel Writer.

Elizabeth Brown (2015) is an Associate at National Geographic.

Elizabeth Purcell (2015) is a Public Relations Associate at Arsenal Center for the Arts.

Examples of alumni working in Law, Politics, and Policy

Amy Weishampel (2011) is a Paralegal at Murthy Law Firm.

Daniel Beck (2012) is a Research Assistant at the National Alliance to Advance Adolescent Health.

Rachel Firgins (2012) is an Associate at Higgis Quasebarth & Partners.

Christina Sin (2012) is a Development Coordinator at the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

Kelly Granito (2013) is a K-12 Education Policy Research Analyst at MDRC.

Whitney Shepard (2013) is a Racial Justice Program Coordinator at the Center for Community Change.

Elizabeth Ellsworth-Kasch (2014) is a Member of the Jeffrey C. Kasch Foundation.

Emma Pettit (2014) is the Program Director at Sustained Dialogue Campus Network.

Lindsay Brayton (2015) is working as an Executive Assistant.

Examples of alumni working in Private Sector Management

Michael Cardinal (2012) is a Store Manager Coach at CVS Health.

Andy Noel (2012) is a Branch Manager at M&T Bank.

Lauren Jones (2013) is a Director at Destination America.

Laurel McNaughton Smith (2013) is a Project Manager at Firmwide Resources.

Examples of alumni working in the Public Sector

Amber Kidd (2007) is an Environmental Review Specialist at the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources.

Rick Rydecki (2007) is an Elections Specialist at the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board.

Elizabeth Fazio (2008) is a Management Analyst at U.S. Courts.

Katherine Wilmes (2008) is an Interpretive Specialist at the National Park Service.

Emily Burrows (2009) is a Manager of Curatorships and Cultural Resources at the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

Eve Errickson (2009) is a Supervisory Attorney Advisor at the Office of Contracting at the Smithsonian Institution.

Melissa Luthman (2011) is a Branch Supervisor at the Cridersville Public Library.

Paul Goldstein (2012) is a Commissions Specialist at the Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Spring 2014

Regina Lee Blaszczyk, MA ’87, is the Leadership Chair in the History of Business and Society at the University of Leeds in the UK. In 2012, her latest book, The Color Revolution, was published by the Smithsonian Lemelson Center and the MIT Press. Following reviews in The New York TimesThe International Herald Tribune and theAtlantic, the book was awarded the 2013 Sally Hacker Prize for Outstanding Scholarship that Reaches Beyond the Academy by the Society for the History of Technology at its annual meeting in Portland, Maine. Blaszczyk's new work focuses on the cultural-business history of fashion. It includes collaborations with researchers at the universities of Oslo, Newcastle, Heriot-Watt, St Andrews and Erasmus Rotterdam and with the Center for Business History in Stockholm and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Cary B. Cheifetz, Esq., BA ’72, practices family law at the firm of Ceconi and Cheifetz, LLC, located in Summit, N.J. Mr. Cheifetz is the president of the New Jersey Chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and author of New Jersey Family Law(2nd Edition) published by LexisNexis.

David P. DeVito, BA ’89, MPA ’06, is the director of the American Psychological Association's HIV Training Program. He resides in Arlington, Va., with his husband Dr. Daniel S. Michalski.

Mary Tess Driver, BA ’03, is currently residing in Connecticut. This is her seventh year as a high school teacher at Southington High School (she teaches AP U.S. History and honors U.S. History). Mary is very excited to announce that she is getting married in November 2014!

After nearly two decades in Baltimore, Jessica Elfenbein, MA ’89, is now professor of history and senior associate dean of the University of South Carolina's Graduate School. A public and urban historian, Jessica is now working on a program to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the burning of Columbia, S.C.

Charity Fox, PhD ’10, is in her fourth year on the tenure track as an assistant professor in the Klein Family School of Communications Design at the University of Baltimore, where she teaches in the English, Communications and Popular Culture Studies programs and researches the intersections of gender, narrative and popular cultural rituals. She and her husband Brian recently celebrated the first birthday of their daughter Betty.

Rebecca (Berlyoung) Freeman, MA ’08, is still living in Auckland, New Zealand and has just started her third year working for Auckland Council as a specialist in built heritage (planning/policy team). She welcomed baby Clara Jane Freeman in March of 2014.

After living abroad since 1990, Anita Hibler, PhD ’89, returned to San Diego in January but continues to teach as an online adjunct professor for the University of Maryland University College, which she has been doing since 1999. In 2006, Elephants for Mr. Lincoln: American Civil War-Era Diplomacy in Southeast Asia (Scarecrow Press, Inc.), a book she coauthored with Bill Strobridge, was published.

Kalie Kelman, BA ’10, became an Israeli citizen in October 2013 and is living in Jerusalem. She is currently the director of recruitment for the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies. Pardes is an innovative co-ed learning institute for Jewish textual analysis.

Laurie Lahey, PhD ’13, completed her first year teaching in the Africana Studies Department at the University of South Florida in Tampa, where she taught classes on race in American society and the African diaspora. This year she received an NJ350 Publication Initiative grant. Pending review, the manuscript will be published by Rutgers University Press in 2016. She also contributed a chapter to an edited collection, entitledBeyond Civil Rights: African American and Latino/a Activism in the Twentieth Century United States, which will be published by University of Georgia Press later this year. Her essay explores African American and Puerto Rican alliances during Camden, N.J.'s 1971 riot.

Lisa McCollough, MA ’03, is working in the Marketing Department of Wyndham Worldwide in San Diego, and is a fundraising committee volunteer with the Coronado Historical Association. Now residing on Coronado Island, she and her husband, Andre just celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary. They have three children Evan, 15; Luke, 13; and Sage, 10.

Eric McMurray, BA ’08, is an attorney with the U.S. Department of Labor in Washington, D.C., investigating complaints of illegal retaliation against safety whistleblowers in the mining industry.

John O'Keefe, PhD ’12, will be starting as an assistant professor of history at Ohio University-Chillicothe in 2014.

After 31 years at the Library of Congress, seven of them as head of the Hebraic Section, African and Middle Eastern Division,Peggy Pearlstein, PhD ’93, retired on October 1, 2013. She will present a paper at the annual meeting of the Southern Jewish Historical Society, to be held in Austin, Texas, in October 2014.

Devin Proctor, MA ’13, has moved a full 10 feet to the west, to the Anthropology Department, where he is getting a PhD.

Aliza Schiff, BA ’05, has been back in the area for a few years working for Arlington County as a public art project manager, commissioning art and design enhancements for public spaces and taking care of the county's collection of 60+ permanent public artworks. Before that she spent a few years in St. Louis working for a public art consulting firm and earned a master’s degree in public humanities from Brown University in Providence. She and her husband just had a baby boy named Ethan in January!

David Sitomer, BA ’70, is currently retired but has been writing a play about W.W. Corcoran and a book.

Since last checking in with the department, Robert Solomon, BA ’72, and his wife relocated from New York City to Napa, Calif. He continues to consult, coach, write and teach under the auspices of his firm Solomon Strategic, while also working as a managing director of PALAZZO | Investment Bankers.

Jason Steinhauer, BA '02, was recently named one of D.C.'s "50 on Fire" by In the Capital magazine. His website explains why he was on fire:http://www.jasonsteinhauer.com

Jason Tercha, MA ’13, wrote and presented two conference papers in the last year. "A Little R&R: How Retrocession and Railroads led to Alexandria’s Rebirth," which he presented at the DC Historical Studies Conference on November 16, 2013, and "Derailed: Construction, Expansion and Failure of the Manassas Gap Railroad," presented at the Virginia Forum on March 15, 2014.

For the past year, Carole Watson, PhD ’78, has been serving as acting chairman of NEH. President Obama’s nomination of President William C. Adams of Colby College as incoming NEH chairman is before the Senate, and we along with the wider humanities community are eagerly awaiting his Senate confirmation.

Fall 2014

Marc Eisenberg, BA ’94, works in the music industry, currently serving as the executive director of the Washington Bach Consort. He also founded and currently hosts the D.C. MusicSalon. In October 2014, he moderated “Hear in DC: Vernacular Music in the Nation’s Capital,” the first annual symposium of the brand new DC Vernacular Music Archive at GW’s Gelman Library. Panelists included Ian MacKaye (punk), GW professor Kip Lornell (go-go) and others. He also serves on the board of Culture Capital and Arts Action DC.

Julie Elman, PhD ’09, published her first book, Chronic Youth: Disability, Sexuality, and U.S. Media Cultures of Rehabilitation, with New York University Press.

Amber Erin Kidd, MA ’07, is currently residing in Raleigh, N.C., where she is employed as an environmental review specialist for the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources-State Historic Preservation Office.

David Kieran, PhD ’09, expanded his dissertation project into a book, Forever Vietnam: How a Divisive War Changed American Public Memory, published with the University of Massachusetts Press.

Amy Kurland, BA ’77, founded The Bluebird Cafe in Nashville in 1982, and sold it to the Nashville Songwriters Association International in 2008. She has appeared as an extra in the audience at the Bluebird Cafe in the ABC TV show Nashville and occasionally hosts a tour of the real Bluebird and the set for the TV show. She currently writes grants and raises money as a volunteer for local charities, primarily those that help people who want to recover from alcoholism.

Since receiving his degree in May, Steve Lorenz, PhD ’14, helped to curate the opening exhibition for the new DC Vernacular Music Archives (DCVMA) at GW, a project started by music department professor Kip Lornell. The multimedia exhibition at Gelman Library on D.C. go-go, punk, bluegrass and folk music communities was accompanied by a symposium and performances at the Corcoran. He was also a panelist at the Washington D.C. Historical Society's 41st Annual Conference on DC Culture and Politics of the 1960s. He discussed his work on the schisms within the folk music revival in Washington in the early 60s.

Robert A. Michaels, BA ’74, is a self-employed city planning consultant working in northern New Jersey, representing several municipalities and private clients. He is on the board of trustees for the Housing Partnership of Northern New Jersey and stepped down as chair of the board this year. The Housing Partnership is a nonprofit organization that provides first-time home buyer education and foreclosure counseling, among other services.

At a joint meeting of the Southern Jewish Historical Society and the Texas Jewish Historical Society in Austin, Texas, on October 25, 2014, Peggy Pearlstein, PhD ’93, presented a paper on "A Journey to Palestine in 1946: the emergence of a Zionist a Lobby in the Southeast." She has also served as a consultant to library and media centers since retiring from the Library of Congress in 2013.

After graduation, Catherine Caouette née Rickard, BA ’98, worked in Washington and New York City for a few years, then went to the University of Virginia for law school. During law school, she focused on international and human rights law, and interned for a summer with the Shan Women's Action Network in Thailand, researching domestic workers and human trafficking issues. After law school, she worked for a large law firm and three years ago, took an in-house law job. She has three kids, ages 4, 6 and 8, and lives in San Jose, Calif.

Jay Silberman, BA ’69, went on to American University's law school (1973) and was a legislative assistant to U.S. Rep. Clarence Long (D-MD) before a career developing real estate (shopping centers and an antique mall, because Americans need to buy a lot of stuff, and storage facilities, because Americans need a place to put all their stuff). Twice elected citywide to D.C.'s school board, he is now retired, writing plays and screenplays, producing films, collecting Native American, Inuit and other tribal art, and has been a founding member of the MidAtlantic Literary Edification Society since 1986.

Sally Sims Stokes. MA ’75, has most recently served as interim head of the Art and Architecture Libraries at the University of Maryland while teaching courses in cultural heritage and art librarianship in the Department of Library and Information Science at Catholic University. Over the past 10 years, her publications have focused on the British author (and frequent American traveler) Noel Streatfeild (1895-1986), with her most recent essay, "'The Studio World Surprised and Disturbed Ruth: The Diffident Stage Mother and the Difficult Child in a Post-War Novel by Noel Streatfeild," appearing in Kidding Around: The Child in Film and Media(Bloomsbury, 2014). She is currently working on several interdisciplinary studies in religion, city planning and architectural history.

Keren Veisblatt Toledano, BA ’09, is a digital strategist at Brooklyn United, an agency that exists at the interdisciplinary juncture of interactive design, user experience and marketing for both web and mobile programming in a range of industries including museums, NGO's and higher education. She also founded a triannual literary magazine, with a fellow GW alumna, titled The Knicknackery. She resides in New York City with her husband, Michael and cat, Cagney Ferdinand.

James Zarsadiaz, BA ’08, received his PhD in history from Northwestern University in June 2014. He is currently turning his dissertation on post-WWII suburban planning and Asian American suburbanization into a manuscript. This fall, James is joining the faculty of the University of San Francisco as tenure-track assistant professor of history. He is serving as a fellow at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History for summer 2014 and summer 2015.

Natalie Zelt, BA ’08, completed her master’s this summer and is now a PhD student in American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She just opened an exhibition of photographic and video work entitled “LaToya Ruby Frazier: Riveted with INGZ Collective.” The exhibition will be on view at UT's Visual Arts Center, November 7-December 6, 2014 and the John L. Warfield Center for African and African American Studies ISESE Gallery January 15-May 9, 2015.

Spring 2015

Dennis A. Davison, BA ’71, is the chairman of the Board of Directors of CentroNia, a DC non-profit that specializes in early childhood education in a bilingual, multicultural environment; also a lawyer.

Julie Elman, PhD ’09, is Assistant Professor of Women's & Gender Studies at the University of Missouri. She recently completed her first book, Chronic Youth: Disability, Sexuality, and U.S. Media Cultures of Rehabilitation (NYU Press, 2014).

Mark Kates, BA ’82, is currently sustaining a career in the music business that started while at GW and WRGW. He spent 16+ years in Los Angeles, mostly at Geffen Records, ran the Beastie Boys' label and is now an artist manager.

Jennie Krems, BA ’13, just finished her first year in the M.P.A. program at American University. She works in the Research Center at Education Week, a news organization covering K-12 education topics. Last year she served with AmeriCorps as a Reading Partners site coordinator.

Michael La Place, BA ’85, is the Planning Director for Passaic County, New Jersey. He recently received the NJ Historic Preservation Award for the successful nomination of the Passaic County Court House and Annex to the National and State Registers of Historic Places.

Brooke O’Connell, BA ’12, graduated from the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School Of Law on May 14, 2015.

Eid Mohamed, PhD ’05, will be starting as an Assistant Professor of Transnational Literary and Cultural Studies at the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies in Sept. 2015. His book Arab Occidentalism: Images of America in the Middle East will be released by I.B. Tauris, June 2015

Liz Sieck, BA ’13, is finishing up her Master's Degree in Israel Studies at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. She currently live in Beersheba, Israel.

Jason Steinhauer, BA ’02, was recently appointed to several national committees and task forces, including the program committee of the National History Center, the 50th Anniversary Task Force of the Oral History Association, and the national History Relevance Campaign.

Andrea Stevens, MA ’80, retired from the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, where she was Director of Strategic Communications. Over her 45 years at SITES, she also served as Bicentennial Coordinator & Publications Director.

Sally Stokes, MA ’75, teaches courses on Cultural Heritage and Art and Museum Librarianship at Catholic University. Her essay on British author Noel Streatfeild appears in Howe and Yarbrough, Kidding Around: The Child in Film and Media (Bloomsbury, 2014).

Chelsea St. Onge-May, MA ’13, received the Joint Service Achievement Medal for meritorious service during a deployment to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

James Textoris, BA ’13, has served as a Peace Corps Micronesia EFL teacher in South Korea, a Fulbright Exchange teacher in Latvia, as well as an ESL instructor at Georgetown University. He is currently a high school ESL and US History teacher in Montgomery County Public Schools.