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February 2016

Safety First: Student – Corporate impact at EKU

Speaker Donnie Newman (center left) with SHRM members

Donnie Newman, EHS Specialist at the Sherwin Williams Company operation in Richmond, made an informal presentation to EKU Maroon SHRM students on Tuesday, February 23rd in the Business and Technology Center on the campus of EKU.  Mr. Newman has 27 years of service with Sherwin Williams and is a Certified Safety and Health Specialist. His wide ranging discussion with the students covered the areas of workplace safety and navigating the intricacies of the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), the primary federal agency charged with ensuring workplace safety.

EKU and Sherwin Williams are a good example of “good neighbors” in the Madison County community.  Not only was Mr. Newman willing to share his insights and experiences at the end of a full day at work, but he also serves as an EKU OSHA Outreach Trainer.  Allen D. Engle, faculty advisor to the student HR group, reached out to Mr. Newman through Amanda Baker, Area Human Resources Manager for The Sherwin Williams Company’s Richmond Manufacturing & Distribution Service Center. Ms. Baker is an alumnae of EKU’s HR program and a longtime supporter of her alma mater. “Amanda is one of our success stories, and we have been lucky enough to place four student teams at Sherwin Williams over the last 12 years to act as training consultants for a variety of units and for a variety of training issues in the Richmond operation” stated Professor Engle. “These service projects enhance our students’ understanding of the ideas they learn in the classroom and make them more marketable upon graduation. Sherwin Williams has certainly impacted the quality and depth of our longstanding HR program here at Eastern and we hope we have been able to impact, in some small way, the effectiveness of their operations" Engle continued.

EKU and Sherwin Williams also have a long standing relationship through the 15 week “Leadership Excellence for Middle Managers” program offered by EKU’s Division of Community and Workforce Education.  According to Professor Mike Roberson, primary instructor and academic coordinator for the program, “the program provides wonderful opportunities for EKU Business faculty members to teach, interact and learn from working managers.” The program is a win-win activity for the university and local organizations.  No fewer than nine of Sherwin Williams’ managers have graduated from this program in the last nine years.

Any EKU student with an interest in HR issues may join the bimonthly meetings on every other Tuesday afternoon.  For further information contact Professor Engle at

For further information on the Leadership Excellence program contact

PHOTO CAPTION: Nathan Hall, SHRM CEO/President (center right) presents Donnie Newman, EHS Specialist at the Sherwin Williams Company operation in Richmond (center left) with a small gift in gratitude for sharing his professional expertise in the area of workforce safety.  Included in the photograph are many of the student members of Maroon SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management), the largest and most active student club associated with the profession of human resource management in the central Kentucky area.

EKU to Host Hitachi Supply Chain Conference

l-r: Weiling Zhuang, Adam Cosentino, Robert Combs, and Kirby Easterling

Eastern Kentucky University, the first public university in Kentucky to offer a bachelor’s degree option in Global Supply Chain Management (GSCM), will host Hitachi Automotive Systems Americas’ annual supply chain conference and awards event.

More than 550 leaders representing more than 250 global suppliers, as well as approximately 100 global Hitachi leaders, are expected to attend the conference, which will be held on May 24 at the EKU Center for the Arts.

EKU College of Business and Technology Dean Dr. Thomas Erekson will deliver a welcome on behalf of the University, and an overview of EKU’s GSCM program will be provided to all attendees.  EKU’s GSCM students will participate in a wide variety of ways, including welcoming and registering guests and providing directions within the Center, as well as joining in all the various meetings and presentations.

“This has high potential to generate explosive growth in our program,” said James Kirby Easterling, an EKU School of Business executive-in-residence using his 22 years of corporate supply chain leadership experience to direct the program.  “Having an elite company like Hitachi Automotive host their event here at EKU and partner with our new Global Supply Chain Management program will provide our students great exposure to global issues firms are facing and the importance of a well-integrated supply chain network”.

The Global Supply Chain Management Program at EKU focuses on operations management, supply chain management, logistics, strategic procurement, supply chain network design and information systems analysis and design.

“There are a few reasons why Supply Chain Management has been and continues to be very hot,” Easterling said in 2015. “Globalization is a major reason, as firms are buying raw materials, manufacturing products and shipping their goods all over the world at unprecedented levels, and supply chain management is at the forefront of making that happen. A second major reason is that top executives are correctly assessing that effective supply chain management is often a quicker path to improving profitability than simply selling more product.”

For more information about EKU’s Global Supply Chain Management Program, visit

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Tonya Jackson opens the Supply Chain Executive Speaker Series

Tonya Jackson

EKU's Department of Management, Marketing and International Business is pleased to announce the launch of its Supply Chain Executive Speaker Series.

Tonya Jackson, Vice President of Lexmark International, Global Supply Chain Operations, will be at EKU on March 3rd as the first in the series of global supply chain management executives. Ms. Jackson will share insights on global supply chain operations from a Fortune 1000 perspective as well as her outlook on the industry. Lexmark sells its products and services in more than 170 countries, and is a recognized global leader by many of the technology industry’s leading market analyst firms.

Kirby Easterling, Executive-in-Residence for EKU's School of Business, said, “I am very excited to welcome Tonya Jackson to EKU as the first in our new Supply Chain Executive Speaker Series.  Tonya brings a wealth of experience from having worked for Lexmark International over 25 years in a wide range of leadership roles, and now serves as Lexmark’s Vice President of Global Supply Chain Operations.  Tonya also has a passion for “paying it forward” and is really excited about speaking to our School of Business students.  I highly recommend this event!”

The event will be held in the Business and Technology Center Rogow Auditorium (BTC 049) from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m.  All majors are welcome to attend.  Bring your questions for Ms. Jackson and seek out advice - especially if you are an upcoming School of Business graduate.

View the event Photo Gallery...

Find out more about EKU's Global Supply Chain Management program at:

Maroon SHRM Spring 2016 Officers Announced

Spring 2016 Maroon SHRM officers with advisor Dr. Allen Engle

EKU’s Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is a student run organization open to all majors interested in the human resource management profession.

Members engage in a number of professional, charitable, and service projects throughout the semester. SHRM currently holds officer elections at the beginning of each semester, providing students a channel in which to exercise leadership.

Spring 2016 SHRM officers, all seniors, are pictured (left to right) with faculty advisor, Dr. Allen Engle (far left):

  • Danielle Cant (Management, Calgary, Alberta, Canada) – Vice President
  • Brittany Parker (Human Resources Management, Beattyville) - Chief Learning Officer
  • Makayla Wilson (Human Resources Management, Manchester)
  • Justin Morris (Management and Marketing, Lexington)
  • Katelyn Francis (Management, Lexington) - Chief Operating Officer
  • Morgan Bemiss (Management, Somerset) - Chief Information Officer
  • Meghan Brown (Management, Union) - Chief Financial Officer
  • Autumn Blakeman (Management and Marketing, Lexington)
  • Katherine Collins (Human Resources Management, LaGrange) - Vice President of Service Projects
  • Nathan Hall (Human Resources Management, Richmond) - Chief Executive Officer

Members also receive a wide variety of professional benefits from participating in Maroon SHRM. Other events include guest speakers from business leaders in related industries, insight into graduate school options, plant walkthroughs, and other networking experiences. Maroon SHRM meetings are posted on the SHRM bulletin board outside of Room 102 in the EKU Business and Technology Center.  If you are interesting in joining Maroon SHRM in the spring 2016 term contact the faculty advisor, Professor Allen D. Engle at

Marketing Sophomore to Appear on 'Cake Wars'

Meghan Smith and her award-winning cake creation

EKU Student, Cake Artist To Appear On Food Network | Posted Feb 4, 2016

An EKU Student and Berea cake artist is slated to appear on the Food Network this month.

Meghan Smith, a sophomore marketing major at Eastern Kentucky University and owner of Doodlebug Cakes, will appear on the February 22 episode of Food Network’s show Cake Wars.

Meghan started her business when she was just twelve years old, and just six years later she will be competing against professional cake artist on national television.

“Meghan’s cakes are creative, artistic, and delicious, and Berea is thrilled to see her business put in the national spotlight. Berea wishes her the best luck on the upcoming episode, and hopes that the entire Commonwealth will tune in,” Director of Business Development Danny Isaacs said.

The Cake Wars episode featuring Doodlebug Cakes will air February 22 at 9:00pm EST on Food Network. To find out more information about Doodlebug Cakes and to see some of her work visit, on her Facebook Page , or follow her on Instagram & twitter @doodlebugcake.

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EKU PGA Golf Management Travels to Orlando 2016 Merchandise Show

PGM alumni group photo with President Benson and CBT Dean Tom Erekson

For the tenth consecutive year EKU’s PGA Golf Management program participated in the 2016 PGA Merchandising Show. Some 23 students from the PGM program traveled to Orlando, Fl., to attend the tradeshow from January 27–29.

The PGA Merchandising Show is the largest tradeshow dedicated to a single sport. Approximately 1,000 major industry brands were represented, including companies like Nike, Titleist, and TaylorMade.

A reception was hosted for EKU PGA/GM Alumni on Wednesday, January 27, with more than 20 alumni on hand. EKU’s President Dr. Michael Benson and Dr. Tom Erekson, Dean of the EKU's College of Business and Technology, also attended the Orlando event.


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