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Notable Alumni

 


Oglethorpe University has been preparing leaders to make a life, make a living and make a difference in their professions, their communities and the world since 1835. Here are some of Oglethorpe’s more notable alumni. If you know someone you think should be considered for our list, please email alumni@oglethorpe.edu with their name and qualifications.

Arts, Culture and Media

Sidney Lanier, class of 1860: Oglethorpe's most distinguished alumnus from the antebellum era. (deceased). The work of Sidney Lanier, American poet, critic, and musician, bridged southern romantic literature and 20th-century realism. He spent his life trying to convince America that poetry and music are governed by similar artistic laws. He is best known for his novel "The Boy's King Arthur" and well-known poems "The Song of the Chattahoochee" and "The Marshes of Glynn."

  • Vincent Sherman '25: Acclaimed Hollywood film director with more than thirty movies to his credit, including Mr. Skeffington (1944) and The Young Philadelphians (1959). (deceased)
  • Samuel Earl Blackwell '29: Founder of Celebrity Services, Inc. In 1939, he founded the lucrative New York-based Celebrity Service, an information and research service that has since opened branches in Hollywood, London, Paris and Rome. (deceased)

  • Donald Rubin '56: Founder of Rubin Museum of Art in New York City. Donald Rubin has been passionate collector of Himalayan art for over 30 years. In the Spring of 2011 Donald Rubin's Collection, Goddess, Lion, Peasant, Priest: Modern and Contemporary Indian Art was exhibited at the Oglethorpe Museum of Modern Art. This was the first public display of more than 50 works from 30 of India's most famous artists, including Francis Newton Souza, Sakti Burman, Seema Kohli, and Maqbool Fida Husain. The Huffington Post called the collection, "important and extraordinary".

  • David Bauman '64: Owner of Bauman's Rare Books in Philadelphia and New York. Most recently, in 2008 they opened up a store in Las Vegas. The Las Vegas store replicate the Madison Avenue gallery in design, inventory and exceptional customer service, but provides the added dimension of being open over twelve hours a day, seven days a week, and has the distinction of being perhaps the only place in the world where you can purchase a Shakespeare folio at 10:30 on a Saturday night.

  • Carl David '70: 4th generation art dealer with a gallery in Philadelphia specializing in American and European seventeenth, eighteenth, nineteenth- and twentieth-century paintings, watercolors, sculptures and drawings. He is the author of Collecting & Care of Fine Art published by Crown in 1981 and most recently the novel Bader Field.

  • Bob Amick '72: Owner of successful restaurant group in Atlanta, Ga., Concentrics Hospitality. Restaurants include: ONE.midtown kitchen, TWO.urban licks, TRIOS, Piebar, Murphy's and Lobby at TWELVE.

  • Thomas Stevenson "Tom" Douglas ’75: American country music songwriter. Active since the early 1990s, he has written Top Ten hits for John Michael Montgomery, Martina McBride, Tim McGraw, Collin Raye and others. Most recently, Tom won a Grammy in 2010 for writing "The House that Built Me" by Miranda Lambert, which won "Song of the Year".

  • Christopher Fulton '80: A sound engineer who has worked for bands all over the world. He has worked with U2, the Olympic Games in Vancouver and Barbara Streisand to name a few!

  • Ivan Bilancio ’81: A film editor who specializes in animation. He is known for his work on The Lion King, Hercules and Surf's Up. Ivan's father, Dr. Leo Bilancio, was a beloved member of the Oglethorpe history faculty from 1958 to 1989.

  • Johnny White ’88: A filmmaker and artist in Chicago. He is currently making a name for himself as a photographer. In addition to capturing iconographic images of the cityscape, he is a successful independent filmmaker, with production credits in Temporary Girl, TAX DAY, Paula Froehle’s Underground Women and Up on the Rope, Hollie Lavenstein’s Just Act Normal, My Best Friend’s Wedding, Master and Commander, and Home Alone 3. He has been Art Director on television’s The Bachelor, The Bachelorette, Top Design and Top Chef.

  • Samson Desta '94: The Pakistan & Afghanistan Bureau Chief at CNN.

  • Nick Chawhala '03: CEO of Swarm Logic, Inc. which created, manages, and operates Namaste Studios in Atlanta, Ga. Nick's clients have included: Atlantic Records, Def Jam, Universal Records, Tricky Stewart, Mariah Carey, Gym Class Heroes, Beastie Boys, Ferrari, and Elton John just to name a few. Most recently, Nick earned a Grammy nomination for engineering Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream", which was up for "Album of the Year" in 2010.

 

Education

  • Charles Allen Stillman, class of 1841: A member of the first graduating class of Oglethorpe, Stillman went on to found Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (deceased)

  • Robin Whyte Hoffman ’70: Formerly the President of Dekalb Technical College is now vice president with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), which is the regional body for the accreditation of degree-granting higher education institutions in the 11 Southern states.

 

Athletics

  • Luke Appling '32: Led the 1930 Stormy Petrels to a 15-0 season and college championship of the south prior to signing a pro contract with the Atlanta Crackers before completing his college degree. During his twenty-one year career with the Chicago White Sox he compiled a .310 lifetime batting average and, in 1964, became the 101st member inducted into Pro Baseball's Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. After retirement from playing ball, he served as a major and minor league manager and coach, ending his career as the minor league batting coach for the Atlanta Braves. Appling was inducted into the OU Hall of Fame in 1962 and named Honorary Coach of the 1990 Stormy Petrels before he passed away in 1991.

Robert E. Wolfe '80: Executive Vice President of the Washington Nationals and former senior vice president for administration with the Atlanta Braves.

 

Law and Politics

Charles Longstreet Weltner '48: Son of University President Philip Weltner and a member of the class of 1948. Elected to Congress in 1962, Weltner was the only Representative from the Deep South to vote in favor of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Two years later, in 1966, Weltner chose not to run for a fourth term rather than acquiesce to his party’s command that he sign a "loyalty oath" supporting the entire ticket, which was led by an avowed segregationist. Twenty-five years later, Weltner was named the recipient of the second annual Profile in Courage Award, given by the John F. Kennedy Library. The library noted these acts of civic leadership at the time. Oglethorpe University created an award in his honor, The Charles Longstreet Weltner Award. This award is presented annually to a student who demonstrates analytical and persuasive skills and an appreciation for the elements of civic leadership, as determined through a competitive essay and interview process. (deceased).

  • Mary Williams Cazalas '54: Retired nurse and attorney. She served as assistant district attorney in New Orleans during the time of Jim Garrison and the JFK conspiracy theories on which Oliver Stone's film JFK is based.

  • Robert P. Mallis '62: Retired Superior Court Judge for the Superior Court of DeKalb County. He is currently on the bench part-time in Fulton County.

  • Robert B. "Bobby" Baker '79: Former chair of the Georgia Public Service Commissioner first elected in 1992, the first Republican elected to statewide constitutional office in Georgia since Reconstruction. Bobby is currently a Partner at Freeman, Mathis & Gary, LLP.

  • Christopher McFadden '80: Elected as an Appellate Judge in Georgia in 2010 for the term beginning in January 2011.

  • Drew Findling '81: Prominent criminal defense attorney in Atlanta at the Findling Law Firm, a national presenter on death penalty defenses and television legal commentator. He has represented several high-profile clients, including Grammy-nominee Faith Evans, Former Fulton County, Georgia, Sheriff Jackie Barrett, Former President of Morris Brown College Dolores Cross, NBA Superstar Shaquille O'Neal and former NBA great Dennis Rodman. He was named one of Georgia’s Legal Elite in Georgia Trend Magazine and as a Georgia “Super Lawyer” by Atlanta Magazine.

  • Dar’shun Kendrick ’04: Business Attorney and Owner of Kendrick Law Practice in Atlanta. She is currently the elected State Representative for District 94 at the Georgia General Assembly.

 

Business

  • William Howell Gower '68: Co-founder and owner of MATRIX Resources, Inc., a privately-held staffing services company that provides deliverables-based professional services in areas of application development, business intelligence, client infrastructure, and delivery management services. he private company is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia and has additional offices in Atlanta, Georgia; Charlotte, North Carolina; Birmingham, Alabama; Chicago, Illinois; Jacksonville, Florida; Phoenix, Arizona; Dallas, Fort Worth, and Houston, Texas; San Francisco, California; Seattle, Washington; and New York, New York.

  • Sanan Angubolkul ’75: He is the Chairman and President, Srithai Superware, the largest manufacturer of melamine plates in the world.

Carol Flammer '89: is a public relations and social media marketing expert, strategist and consultant. With 20 years of experience, Carol has established herself as the “go to” for real estate and construction products public relations and social media. Carol is president of Flammer Relations, Inc., and managing partner of mRELEVANCE, LLC, an Internet Marketing, Social Media and Public Relations firm with offices in Atlanta and Chicago. Carol was also the recipient of the Spirit of Oglethorpe Award from Oglethorpe University in 2009.
Scarlet Pressley-Brown '95: is director of external affairs & community relations at Delta Air Lines and vice president of the Delta Air Lines Foundation. She is a member of the National Black M.B.A. Association, Clark Atlanta Guild, American Institute for Managing Diversity and the National Coalition of 100 Black Women.

 

Armed Services

  • Cmdr Dan Martin ’91: Blue Angel, Commanding Officer, Strike Fighter Squadron 37

 

Medicine

  • Dr. Janice Galleshaw '75: is a Breast Cancer Specialist at Georgia Cancer Specialists which is the largest private medical oncology/hematology practice in the Southeast and a leader in advanced cancer treatment and research. Janice was recently featured in major Atlanta media outlets for being named a Top Doctor by Atlanta magazine for medical oncology.

  • Claire Coles '75: is the director of the Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Drug Exposure Center at Marcus Autism Center. Dr. Coles also is professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Emory University School of Medicine with a joint appointment in the department of pediatrics.

  • Dr. Ray Lucas ’86: Chief of Emergency Medicine at George Washington Hospital in DC.
 
 
 
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