newsId: 58C28790-5056-AF26-BEFAA3C917222B0B
Title: Rockin’ in the Free World
Author: Gregg Sangillo
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Abstract: Kogod’s John Simson discusses the music business in the digital age.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 07/28/2015
Content:

Summer concert season is underway. And for many musical artists, live performances have become an economic necessity. Musicians used to go on tour to promote their new album, but nowadays, the situation is almost reversed. The album might not earn much profit, but it can help build enthusiasm for a money-making concert performance.

The financial turmoil facing the record industry has been well-documented. Yet John Simson, an executive in residence at American University's Kogod School of Business, is in a strong position to evaluate the challenges of making profitable music in the digital age. Previously, Simson was a recording artist, entertainment lawyer, and executive director of SoundExchange, an organization that collects royalties from satellite radio and online services for musicians and record labels. In an interview, Simson assesses the current state of the music business.

Can You Break Records if Records are Broken?

Simson talks about how selling the album as product became unsustainable. "We used to be in the business of selling pieces of plastic. And now we're really more in the service business. And whether it's people subscribing to Spotify or the new Apple or Tidal or Pandora, there's more and more consumption through listening," he says.

As the saying goes, records are made to be broken. Yet the top selling album of all time, Michael Jackson's Thriller (1982), may stay in the top slot for quite a while. Though numbers are difficult to ascertain, The New Yorker published estimates from a French researcher in 2013: Of the top 10 highest selling albums ever, not one of them was released this century. The most recent album in that top 10, Shania Twain's Come on Over, was released in 1997—the year that the average incoming AU freshman was born.

This evolution was driven by technology, Simson says. But he adds that changes in musical tastes also contributed to the demise of the album.

"Consumers had always wanted to be able to buy individual tracks. And yet record companies knew that their best business model was getting the consumers hooked on a single, and then making them buy the album. If you can sell a single for a dollar, you can sell an album for $15," he says. "If it was a group like the Beatles or Pink Floyd or any number of artists where the fans wanted to own the whole album, the business model worked fine. But when you were looking at artists like the Backstreet Boys—or these more disposable singles pop acts that kind of ruled the 90s—consumers didn't really want to have to buy the filler tracks. They just wanted the hits."

Streaming Services

Through file sharing and downloadable songs, Napster took the music world by storm in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Having recently signed on to help the Recording Industry Association of America, Simson was deposed by Napster during a legal battle at the time. (Although he says it was a short deposition that didn't yield anything.) Simson says that while the record industry didn't see the Napster onslaught coming, they were well-prepared for other aspects of the digital age.

In 1995, Congress passed legislation enabling musicians to get paid when their music is streamed online. Simson was part of a coalition that pushed for the law, and streaming services like Pandora still benefit from it, he says.

"It's a compulsory license, which means that no one can say, 'I don't want to be part of it.' So, for example, when Taylor Swift said, 'I don't want to be on Spotify,' she could do that because Spotify doesn't qualify for this license. Whereas Pandora qualifies for the license, so Taylor Swift can't say I don't want to be on Pandora," he explains.

Unlike Pandora—which is more like a personally-curated radio station—Spotify allows the consumer to pick songs on demand. Its expansive library is a treasure trove for consumers—something akin to the mythic "Lester Bangs' basement," where you can play almost any music, any time. Spotify is a serious concern for artists and record labels, though.

Despite this dilemma, Simson believes there are pieces in place for musicians to earn profits. Years ago, the average person bought roughly three CDs a year—maybe $50 worth, with $25 for the record company and some trickling down to the artist, Simson explains.

"With Spotify, if people actually paid for the premium service, which is about $10 a month, there's $120 being generated per consumer. Sixty percent of that goes to the record company, so that's $72 a year. Maybe another 10 percent, $12, goes to the songwriters and music publishers under a separate license," he says. "So if Spotify were only subscription, it'd be a fabulous business for the record companies." But as Simson notes, Spotify listeners overwhelmingly just use its free service rather than paying for the premium option.

Another nascent streaming service is Tidal, recently acquired by hip hop mogul Jay Z. He's enlisted a number of big-name artists as stakeholders, including Rihanna, Kanye West, and Daft Punk. Simson says it's too early to tell whether it will work, but the concept is similar to HBO—a network that's profited from exclusive content like The Sopranos and Game of Thrones.

Live Performances and the One-Percenters

With a desire to spend more time in the recording studio, the Beatles famously stopped touring in 1966. Hardly any rock critic second-guesses that decision now, as the Fab Four went into creative overdrive and produced seminal albums Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beatles (The White Album), and Abbey Road. Bands might not have that luxury today, and Paul McCartney himself still pulls in hundreds of millions of dollars from touring.

For big acts filling up stadiums, this system usually pays well. "When you're dealing with Taylor Swift or the Rolling Stones or people like that, typically they are walking out with a very large percentage [of the ticket proceeds]," he says, even after money is set aside for ushers, security, promoters, and agents.

This emphasis on concerts could leave studio-centric artists out in the cold. But he notes how some bands have found new ways to generate excitement through touring. Last year, Arcade Fire covered popular local artists in each city the band played. "So when they came to D.C., they played a Fugazi song. When they were in Minneapolis, they played a Prince song. And it's a very cool way to tie yourself to the local community," he says.

Lesser-known bands can still make a living playing smaller venues, he says. But the music business is experiencing the same wealth inequality pervading the rest of the economy. "Eighty percent of the money generated by iTunes comes from 1 percent of the tracks," Simson says. A sizable percentage of songs on Spotify are never even played once, he adds.

In general, Simson sees reasons for optimism in the new service-based music model. SoundExchange, which generates most of its revenue from Pandora and SiriusXM Satellite Radio, now collects about $1 billion in royalties annually—with a steady portion going to the artists.

Business and Entertainment

Simson serves as program director for Kogod's business and entertainment program, which now has BS and minor options. Two of his students are currently interning with accounting firms in the entertainment industry. Several people in the program are working at Sony this summer, and he also has a student interning with MTV. "Some of my students are planning to go to law school and become entertainment lawyers, and some of them are creatives and will probably go out and start their own businesses," he says.

Many of his students have had artistic aspirations at some point. Through the Kogod program, they're finding new ways to get into the entertainment business, a career trajectory that Simson can identify with.

A former solo artist who once opened for Jethro Tull, he eventually became manager for multi-Grammy-winning artist Mary Chapin Carpenter and served as a special adviser to legend Harry Belafonte. "I think I said, 'Ok, Jethro Tull, they're way better than I am,'" he says, "but I could get involved behind the scenes."

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Title: Kogod Alum With a Green Entrepreneur Spirit
Author: Kali Linette
Subtitle:
Abstract: An entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for renewable energy lead Rohan Shah, MBA ’15, to be a leader in the untapped green energy market and at Kogod.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 06/26/2015
Content:

It's not possible to have a growing economy without growing resources.

At least that's how Rohan Shah, MBA '09, sees things.

"Climate change is a big issue that a lot of us recognized a long time ago. We have to look at climate change in a real way," said Shah.

While at Kogod, sustainability caught Shah's attention. His interest peaked in green energy as he moved toward a new industry.

Shah realized climate change affected the economy’s stability and growth. Taking the threat seriously, he created positive change through technology aimed at making green energy more affordable.

After graduating, Shah continued learning about green energy and pursued projects in the industry. He worked for a solar company in Colorado before joining Deep Chakraborty, CEO, and Matt Cheney, CAS/BS '95 and Chairman, at enACT.

A Silicon Valley startup, enACT focuses on SAAS based solar sales software aimed at reducing business costs for green energy developers and installers. It alleviates high costs associated with installing climate friendly solutions, making green energy competitive in the market place.

During its short time on the market, enACT has received global recognition. The London-based publication New Economy Magazine awarded the company the 2014 New Economy Award for its work in energy management.

"The future is bright. We have a completely untapped market …[worth] $220 billion. We are one of the first to enter and are moving as fast as we can," said Shah.

As Director of Operations, Shah is responsible for enACT's design and architecture. His Kogod professors prepared him for this role citing value in technology and good corporate social responsibility.

"[Professors] William DeLone and Mark Clark impacted me at American," said Shah.

"Delone tied technology with business while Clark taught about leadership, strategic decision making, human resources… [and] corporate social responsibility."

All of which Shah relies on heavily in the day-to-day operations at enACT.

Although Shah is located in California, he would like to maintain his relationship with his alma mater.

"I can't be as involved as I would like to be right now, but I would like to work with Kogod to try and implement sustainability programs," said Shah.

His greatest contribution to Kogod to date comes in the form of founding the entrepreneurs club.

"Kogod was very focused on consulting and government jobs. They weren't really promoting entrepreneurship [when I was a student], so we started the club to help people out," said Shah.

The club grew since Shah started it and continues to help stimulate aspiring entrepreneurs.

"The future of the [entrepreneur] club, like the future of entrepreneurship at AU, seems very positive," said Professor William Bellows, the entrepreneur club's faculty advisor.

"I envision a symbiotic relationship between the AU incubator and the Entrepreneurship Club, with the potential for shared activities and programs and a lot of crossover between club members and student ventures in the incubator."

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newsId: 4B078CF0-5056-AF26-BEDB4066A0518517
Title: Men Get Ahead by Chatting Before Negotiations
Author: Ericka Floyd
Subtitle: New research finds male negotiators get a better deal by making small talk
Abstract: Kogod professor Alexandra Mislin finds small talk in negotiations has a stronger, more consistent effect for men.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 06/17/2015
Content:

Whether sealed with a handshake, a million-dollar contract, or a string of curses, every business deal is a reflection of trust. Both parties trust that the other will hold up their end of the bargain. Good negotiators have a store of social capital before bargaining begins; built up through interactions outside the negotiations that establish trust. Working with a team of researchers from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität and Technische Universität in Munich, Germany, American University's Kogod School of Business professor of management Alexandra Mislin researched how small talk before a negotiation impacted perceptions and outcomes.

The study, titled "Should He Chitchat? The Benefits of Small Talk for Male Versus Female Negotiators," published in the Basic and Applied Social Psychology reveals that small talk can be another tool in the arsenal for men, one that builds social capital and increases their likelihood of beneficial gains from negotiation. "We saw a boost in positive negotiation outcomes for men when they engaged in small talk before the negotiation," Mislin said. "Even a little small talk contributed to getting a better deal." However, the same is not true for women.

For example in a salary negotiation with one's employer, "based on our findings, we suggest that people negotiating employment contracts, particularly men, think twice before skipping the small talk," said Mislin. "While both men and women may experience benefits from small talk when negotiating salary, men might walk away with a better deal."

According to the researchers, it comes down to expected gender behaviors and stereotypes. Because women are expected to be more communicative, they are anticipated to make small talk and thus earn no extra social capital for engaging in "chit chat" before a negotiation. "It's not as notable a behavior when a woman makes small talk," Mislin said. "So she is not as likely to experience a social boost from the effort." But the same communal behavior from men is unexpected, and thus contributes to more positive perception of men as well as more favorable final offers.

The researchers discovered that the benefits to men who small talk are more pronounced in negotiation situations that are characterized by more ambiguity and where small talk is not necessarily expected. In situations where expectations are clearly defined, including an expectations of small talk (e.g. an employment contract interview), both men and women who small talk are perceived more favorably. But this positive perception only translates into better deals for men who small talk.

"Our findings reinforce the notion that men and women in the same situation, engaging in the same behavior, can experience different reactions because of different behavioral expectations associated with their gender," Mislin said. "But our research also suggests that there may be areas where violating stereotypes is beneficial, as we see here for the men who engage in small talk."

 

This article includes text from "Negotiation Tactics from a Social Capital Standpoint" a story written by Laura Herring that first appeared in Kogod Now.

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Title: The Business Writing of Bards
Author: Gregg Sangillo
Subtitle:
Abstract: The Kogod Center for Business Communications is helmed by published poets.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 06/16/2015
Content:

If Emily Dickinson were alive today, could she have written a winning elevator pitch? The notion seems almost absurd, given the poet's ethereal style and well-known reclusiveness. Yet on further inspection, poetry may not be all that different from business writing. Two staffers at the Kogod Center for Business Communications (KCBC) at American University have straddled both the business and literary worlds.

Concision and Punch

Bonnie Auslander is director of KCBC, and she's also a published poet. She recently finished up a fellowship at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, an artist colony for writers, composers, and visual artists in the small town of Amherst. During an earlier excursion to the colony, Auslander met fellow published poet Shenandoah Sowash. In April of this year, Sowash came on board as assistant director of KCBC.

Auslander explained the logic of hiring someone with Sowash's background. "Over the years, I've hired a lot of creative writers here. And it has always worked out well," she says. "They just get it."

In a recent interview, Auslander and Sowash discuss how poetry writing and business communications intersect. Similar to poetry, most business writing needs to be concise. Both mediums challenge the writer to not only use words sparingly, but to convey a powerful message. "You're paying attention to the impact on your audience, and on word choice and language in various ways," says Auslander. "The economy of it is helpful," Sowash adds. "Every word matters."

Creative Environments

Common literary methods can be applicable in other teaching areas. Having attended so many writing workshops, Auslander and Sowash are able to provide students with constructive feedback.

"The workshop culture can be mocked and it can be bad, but you really do learn how to critique each other in a way that's helpful. And that is the core of what we do," says Auslander. "We try to help the students by steering them towards their ideal text or presentation."

The growth of the Internet has unleashed newfound creativity in the economy. Therefore, artistic endeavors, such as painting or poetry, might prove useful in tech hubs like Silicon Valley. "I think that this start-up culture that's been going on is probably more creative and art-friendly than the more traditional corporate environment," Sowash says. Spencer Swan, a Kogod grad who worked in KCBC all four years, recently accepted a job at Facebook in Austin, Texas.

Music, Lyrics, and Inspiration

Based on suggestions from recruiters, the school saw a need to improve business students' writing and public speaking skills. To assist in this effort, Auslander was hired in 2006 and she launched the Kogod Center for Business Communications. Among other services, KCBC helps students with pitches, team presentations, cover letter writing, and interview preparation.

A piano player with two violin-playing children, Auslander says she was drawn to poetry through her love of music. She earned an MFA in poetry from University of Massachusetts Amherst, and she spent a semester teaching creative writing and English composition in Bangladesh. Her work has been featured in a number of journals, and a new poem will appear in the literary magazine Sweet.

Sowash also emphasizes the symbiotic relationship between music and poetry. Along with some of her favorite poets (Anne Sexton, Sylvia Plath), she includes musicians like Leonard Cohen and Joni Mitchell. Sowash earned her MFA from University of Maryland. During her involvement with the Center for Talented Youth, she taught advanced poetry to eight-year-old children.

Most writers suffer through numerous rejections before finally getting published. Finding the time to write—much less submit —poems can be incredibly difficult. So how do Auslander and Sowash secure bylines? The short answer is consistency. Auslander is committed to writing every morning, even if it's only for five minutes. Sowash pencils in time to write every Sunday morning.

Though writing is an arduous process, Auslander stresses how it can be a therapeutic break from daily madness. "We're all just overloaded and distracted and constantly bombarded with stuff," Auslander says. "And I do think poetry is the ultimate antidote to that."

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Title: Entrepreneur Andrew Levine Returns to Kogod Seeking Millennial Perspective
Author: Kali Linette
Subtitle:
Abstract: Entrepreneur and Kogod alumnus, Andrew Levine, returned to his alma mater to gain millennial perspective on his company’s latest product, Sunburn Alert, while giving business advice along the way.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 06/15/2015
Content:

Andrew Levine, SPA/BA '86 and CEO of JADS International, comes from a long line of entrepreneurs. Both his father and grandfather manufactured and sold shoes. At American University, Levine found his passion for business and continued his family’s entrepreneurial legacy.

Originally, Levine wanted to tie law and business together, but an internship changed his path.

"For a short period of time, when I was at American University, I interned at a law firm and right away I knew it was not for me. Business was the way I wanted to go…it was the best decision I ever made," Levine said.

After graduating, Levine wanted to jump straight into business. For a short time, he worked for a small family company before pursuing his own endeavors.

He flourished in the business world, first at Stone Care International (SCI) in 1990. Levine developed surfacing products and sealants for granite and stone before selling SCI in 2004.

Levine's latest development, Sunburn Alert, a JADS International product, focuses on skin care instead of stone care. Wanting to gain millennial perspective on marketing the UV-detecting wristband, Levine returned to his alma mater to partner with first-year MBA students.

"I know that the school has very high standards for their education and students… it has always been very reliable," said Levine

During the course of the spring semester, Levine tasked student groups with devising a strategic marketing plan for Sunburn Alert. They used guidelines and resources from Levine to tackle to project.

"We were given a fictional budget of $250,000 to increase brand awareness and market share," said Steve Beam, MBA '16.

Groups conducted primary and secondary research to evaluate the marketplace. Surveys and interviews helped them understand the target market's attitudes towards skin care and their awareness of Sunburn Alert.

"After getting a better understanding of…recent trends, we sent out a survey of questions to about 100 people…[and] conducted four in-depth interviews with acquaintances to learn about the potential market and hear customers' opinions," said Kendra Clark, MBA '16.

In late April, the groups presented their findings for Levine and his wife, Julie, SOC/BA '87. Expectations were high, as Levine was eager to see what his company could improve upon.

"Having the students do their own research gives us new avenues and new ways to look at the market and understand who we're selling to," said Levine. "Other people’s hindsight is important for our foresight," he said.

Beam and Clark's group focused on building brand awareness through corporate partnerships.

"We suggested working with dermatologist offices in [Washington, D.C.] to hand out [Sunburn Alert bracelets] at each visit and partnering with amusement park resort properties to provide samples," said Beam.

Levine was impressed with the students' presentations and plans to use some of their suggestions.

"I critiqued each presentation. All of the students did a great job," said Levine. "I was able to teach students the actualities and the reality of what takes place in running a business," he said.

"We've already updated our website and are working from a new social media plan based on students' suggestions. Buying season starts in July for 2016, and some of the concepts they had, we’re actually going to introduce," said Levine.

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Title: Second PMBA Cohort Takes Learning a Flight Further to Brazil
Author: Kali Linette
Subtitle:
Abstract: Kogod’s second PMBA cohort visited Brazil to learn about business in an emerging economy. Students toured a variety of sites based on their interests and contacts while experiencing Brazilian culture on this eight-day trip.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 06/09/2015
Content:

Not all universities offer MBA students an opportunity to study together for an entire program or go abroad as a group. But Kogod's Professional MBA (PMBA) cohort structure provides students with a unique 27-month experience to learn, make connections and travel outside of the United States.

"I honestly can’t imagine not studying in a cohort. We are with the same individuals for the full length of the PMBA program," said Briana Evans, MBA '15. "You get to forge deep relationships over the tenure of your master’s experience…something that I highly value on an academic, personal, and professional level," she said.

After planning and preparing together for almost a year, the second cohort departed on May 9 to Brazil for their eight-day international experience.

"The overarching goal of the program is for students to learn and understand how business is conducted in a developing economy," said Jolie Roetter, Kogod's director of global learning.

In Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, the students visited and toured a variety of companies and organizations across a range of industries, largely based on their areas of interest.

"We researched the companies and wrote one-page research papers on them," said Linsey Jaco, MBA '15, about preparing for site visits in Brazil. "Professors were keeping those companies top of mind for us," she said.

They toured eight sites, including Natura, Brazil's largest beauty company, and Casa de Cultura e Cidadania, a community center offering educational courses for children and adults. After each site visit, students analyzed their experience.

"On the bus ride after each visit, we would have a discussion about what we learned from our visit and how it related back to other sites and our Brazilian visit in general," said Evans.

Students saw a different side of Brazilian business after hearing from a panel of entrepreneurs. A student favorite, the panel discussed the strengths and weaknesses of Brazil's monopolized economy.

"It was amazing to hear about what it was like to be an entrepreneur in general, an aspiration of mine, but especially in a different country and culture. They talked about both social hurdles, government policies and their impact on small companies, and their various experiences starting companies in a variety industries," said Evans.

Between site visits and networking, students found time to explore Brazil and expose their palates to the country’s cuisine. They also toured Rio de Janeiro highlighting Christ the Redeemer and Maracanã Stadium.

The trip opened students' eyes to the possibilities and realities of living and working abroad.

"I would be interested in returning [to Brazil] and working for a fairly large firm...on strategy and operations and how to better produce within the country," said Daniel Feeman, MBA '15.

The second cohort graduates this December. In May of 2016, the third cohort will travel to China for their international experience.

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Title: Couture Club
Author: Gregg Sangillo
Subtitle:
Abstract: Kogod professor examines individual reactions to luxury counterfeits.
Topic: Research
Publication Date: 06/02/2015
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If you see an acquaintance carrying a Louis Vuitton handbag, you might get a little jealous. And then if you look closer, you could discover something else: "It's a knockoff!" you say to yourself. But what if seeing a person with the knockoff handbag doesn't provoke that kind of judgmental reaction? You might accept fake handbags, and realize that you like the real Louis Vuitton bags, too.

Brand identity, taste, and social hierarchy all tie into Nelson Amaral's latest research. Amaral, an assistant marketing professor at American University's Kogod School of Business, and Barbara Loken, a professor at University of Minnesota, have a series of studies under review at the Journal of Consumer Psychology on individual reactions to luxury counterfeits.

People Like Me

It makes a difference if someone like you—and not just the devil—wears Prada. Among the observations made by Amaral and Loken, people tend to identify with their own "in-group" when looking at handbags.

If a wealthy person spots another wealthy person with a counterfeit Louis Vuitton, they'll appreciate the original brand more than if a working class person is carrying the fake. "If that brand is important enough for them that they're willing to take a social risk by using a fake and being caught, then obviously that brand must be really important to their group," says Amaral, who spent 12 years in sales and marketing before getting his Ph.D. Yet if the same wealthy person sees a working class person with the knockoff, they'll think a bit more negatively about the original Louis Vuitton.

Likewise, if a working class person sees another working class individual using a counterfeit bag, they'll like the original luxury brand much more. But then the research gets complicated. One might assume that when working class people see wealthy people using fake handbags, they'll like the real brand less. Surprisingly, that's not what happens. In these instances, working class people don't feel differently about luxury brands. (Whatever changes Amaral and his colleague did find here were statistically insignificant.)

What's to explain this? Amaral and Loken believe it relates to matters of social hierarchy. "Working class people expect higher class people to find value in that brand, and expect higher class people to feel that the brand is very important," he explains. "They think, 'That brand, it's for the wealthy person's group. It's part of who they are.'"

This reinforces research showing how people are conflicted about social class. "There's a whole body of work that finds that people don't like the fact that there are high classes and low classes and middle classes," Amaral explains. "But, despite not liking it, there's a sense of comfort we get when we see a society organized hierarchically."

They Are Everywhere

Counterfeits are now a $600 billion a year industry, mostly driven by sellers in China. But even though counterfeits are becoming omnipresent, the real brands may have minimal incentive to crack down on them. If some people feel better about the luxury brands when they see the knockoffs, why try to combat the imitators?

Amaral also talks about the new phenomenon of "purse parties," with upper class groups inviting counterfeit sales people into their homes. Partygoers buy fakes and incorporate them into their wardrobes.

Wealthy people do think more negatively about the real brands when they see working class people wearing knockoffs. Yet if top brands crack down on working class consumers carrying fakes, it might look like bullying, Amaral says.

That's not to say there's no cause for concern. Selling a fake handbag seems innocuous, but those same dealers are involved in much more nefarious activities, such as human trafficking. "Most of the smugglers of these counterfeits are also smuggling counterfeit drugs and people. So this is organized crime," he says.

The Allure of Style

Kanye West has given shout-outs to Louis Vuitton in his songs, and he had his own sneaker line with the luxury brand. The mercurial hip hop star has both endorsed and boycotted the brand over the years.

Amaral says little is known about celebrity impact on luxury and counterfeit consumption. Despite the lack of academic research, he suspects that companies have some intel on the matter. During the 2010 heyday of reality TV star Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, the New York Observer reported that companies were sending her free bags made by their competitors. "Nobody in fashion wants to co-brand with Snooki," the Observer noted.

We're not living in the 1980s, a time associated with yuppies and profligate spending. Yet, even with a smaller middle class, Amaral says many Americans are still enamored with luxury items. And he believes this is partly a result of successful branding campaigns in the fashion industry. "There are middle class people who are saving for three years to buy one Louis Vuitton handbag," he says.

If some consumers are going the extra mile to purchase the real thing, counterfeits obviously attract a large pool of buyers. There's almost a democratizing effect. As part of these studies, Amaral and Loken did inform people that they were looking at knockoffs.

"Some of these counterfeit makers are so good that even the experts can't tell if it's a real handbag or a fake. It's getting harder and harder to tell the difference."

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Title: Six GM Cars Take the Lead in 2015 Kogod Made in America Auto Index
Author: Ericka Floyd
Subtitle: Index Provides More Accurate Evaluation of Vehicles’ True Country of Origin
Abstract: The Kogod Made in America Auto Index determines the domestic content of vehicles sold in the United States.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 06/02/2015
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The Buick Enclave, Cadillac CTS, Chevrolet Corvette, GMC Acadia, Chevrolet Traverse, and GMC Acadia Denali rank as the most American-made car models, according to the 2015 Kogod Made in America Automotive Index. Developed by Associate Professor Frank DuBois, an expert in global supply chain management, the index ranks 332 car models based on seven weighted data points.

The Kogod Made in America Auto Index provides a more accurate picture of the production process for the most popular vehicles on the road today. This research takes into account the ancillary impact of auto vehicle manufacturing on the U.S. economy and provides a better indication of the real economic impact that auto purchases have on the country based on where the vehicle is designed, assembled, and sold.

"This index is an alternative ranking system that provides the public with perhaps the most accurate reflection of the true country of origin of a car and the impact of its purchase on the U.S. economy," said DuBois. "Hopefully, it holds vehicle manufacturers accountable for the claims they make in marketing to U.S. consumers."

The Kogod Index incorporates American Automotive Labeling Act (AALA) data in its calculation and includes seven additional data points that are unaddressed by the AALA to create a more all-encompassing index. The Index criteria include:

  • Profit Margin: Location of the automaker's global headquarters
  • Labor: Location of assembly
  • Research &Development: Location of R&D activities
  • Engine and Transmission: Location of production
  • Inventory, Capital and Other Expenses: Location of assembly
  • Body, Interior, Chassis, Electrical, and Other: Location of production
  • National Highway Traffic Safety Administration AALA "Domestic Content" Score

DuBois used publicly available data to develop the index, including data from the AALA, automakers' annual reports, and Form 10-K filings to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Automakers received up to 100 percentage points based on the scores each received in the seven categories noted above.

Due to multiple tie scores, six vehicles tied for the most American made receiving the same score (87.5) based on a 100 point scale. "The Kogod Index shows a larger percentage of vehicles are more "American made" this year compared to last year," said DuBois. "However, it is interesting to note that the top ranked vehicle from the 2014 Index the Ford F-Series Pickup fell to third place due to a 10 point change in its AALA score."

DuBois believes this rating process represents the most accurate "Made in America" index available because it acknowledges that every vehicle is likely to include non-American content, given that global supply chains are the operating reality of the automotive industry. Also, DuBois argues that the AALA is meant to help consumers "buy American," but the data it provides is limited in several ways. Since the 1994 passage of the AALA, automakers have been required to affix a label documenting the percentage of "American" content in each vehicle sold in the U.S. While this data is useful, it has some limitations. Most notably:

  1. Canadian and U.S. content are not disaggregated.
  2. Automakers can "round up" individual parts content from 70 to 100 percent to calculate domestic content.
  3. Cars with very little U.S. content may be allowed to use labels from vehicles with higher U.S. content if they are part of the same carline.

The manufacture and sale of automobiles is a significant component of the U.S. economy. In 2014, the auto industry directly employed approximately 1.5 million workers and generated 16.7 million units in total vehicle sales, accounting for approximately 4 percent of the U.S. GDP. Of the 16.7 million vehicles sold in the U.S. in 2014, approximately 65 percent were produced in the United States.

To view the complete 2015 Kogod Made in America Auto Index, visit http://www.american.edu/kogod/autoindex/2015.cfm. See http://www.american.edu/kogod/autoindex/ to view and compare the 2014 and 2013 Kogod Made in America Auto Index.

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Title: Dean Honors Alumni at Annual Dinner
Author: Kali Linette
Subtitle:
Abstract: Dean Carmel honors two alumni at the annual Dean’s Dinner for their work in the Washington D.C. community and at the Kogod School of Business.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 05/21/2015
Content:

Last month, Dean Erran Carmel recognized two philanthropic Kogod alumni for their dedicated community outreach and service to Kogod at the annual Dean's Dinner.

Chris Donatelli, MBA '91, received the 2015 Community Leadership Award for his commitment to revitalizing neglected Washington, D.C. neighborhoods. The Community Leadership Award honors an alumnus exhibiting exemplary leadership skills to make a positive impact in the community.

Donatelli, president of Donatelli Development, forged strong partnerships with the District and WMATA to spur transit-oriented developments in lower income areas. His company developed 10 mixed-use buildings to attract people from all socio-economic backgrounds at U Street, Columbia Heights, and Petworth.

The development projects stimulated community growth as shops, restaurants and outdoor cafes popped up attracting residents and visitors from all backgrounds. Areas that were once urban deserts became more diverse and safer. Donatelli's work received national recognition from the Urban Land Institute and the National Association of Home Builders.

Donatelli's commitment to a historic city's future is shared with Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, SPA/MPP '00. In her recent District Address, Bowser said "the continued development of mixed-income developments is the key to progress of the city."

Donatelli serves as a mentor and advisor on the Kogod Real Estate Council connecting students to the real estate community. He and his wife Karen have four children.

The Dean's Alumni Award also recognizes a distinguished alumnus for outstanding service to the community, professional field, or service to Kogod. Gary Day, BSBA '01, received this year's award for his commitment to education by providing students with scholarships and internships and serving on the Entrepreneurship Advisory Council.

Day's interest in entrepreneurship grew during college while he worked at a venture capital firm. After graduating, Day founded DB Capital Management, a boutique investment firm for medical devices, software, social media, healthcare and financial services.

In 2010, he established the Day Family Scholarship for graduate students studying real estate.

In addition to financing students' educations, Day provided Kogod students with internship opportunities in his office by working regularly with the Kogod Center for Career Development (KCCD) to hire students.

Day served on the Real Estate Advisory Council, informally mentored students and spoke in real estate classes. He also regularly judges the Kogod Case Study Competition.

Day and his wife, Jennifer, have three sons. In addition to serving Kogod, the Day family supports cancer research, cancer family support organizations, and Teach for America.

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Title: Recent Grad, Lisa Schreiber, Receives Dream Job Through Fulbright Austria Merit Award
Author: Sam Kauffmann
Subtitle:
Abstract: New alumna heads to Austria as an English language teacher on Fulbright scholarship.
Topic: Business
Publication Date: 05/21/2015
Content:

For all of the recent Kogod graduates seeking jobs far and wide after leaving campus for the last time, take this advice: be open to new experiences and don’t be afraid to wait out for the job you really want.

Recent graduate Lisa Schreiber, BLC '15, with a specialization in German, is thankful she held strong to this advice.

"Ever since high school it has always been my dream to go abroad and teach English in a German-speaking country," she said.

In the fall, Schreiber will move to Linz, Austria, to teach English at two different schools as a U.S. Teaching Assistant for the Austrian-American Educational Commission through the Fulbright Commission of the Austrian Government.

Schreiber's father is German and she grew up speaking German at home. In high school, German classes were not offered, so she taught herself. At American she tested into higher-level language classes and decided to pursue a business degree that also incorporated a language and culture component.

Although it was a challenge taking all of her classes in German, she remembers it as a "really good learning experience that forced me to learn the language both speaking and academically."

Through Kogod, she studied abroad at the WHU Auto Otto Beisheim School of Management for a semester.

"When I was abroad in Germany, I went to Austria and I absolutely loved it there," she said. "I loved the people, the culture and especially the food. The opportunity to go back was the reason why I wanted to pursue [teaching in] Austria."

Faculty Support

As an undergraduate student, Schreiber enjoyed taking both business and language classes. She found that she was often the only business student in her German classes, which allowed her to get different perspectives from peers in other AU schools and colleges.

Schreiber also worked as a student peer consultant for the Kogod Center for Business Communications (CBC) during her time at AU. Working at the CBC mentoring students gave her valuable teaching experience and was also where she learned about the Austrian government's Fulbright merit scholarship for native English speakers. Schreiber is thankful for the support of Bonnie Auslander, director of the CBC, who wrote a letter of recommendation for her application and has been a mentor for her entire journey at American.

"She's been there for me since freshman year when I began training and tutoring students with academic writing," Schreiber said.

Olga Rojer, one of Schreiber's German language instructors, also influenced Schreiber.

"She gave me a lot of really good ideas on how to connect with students who are learning a foreign language," Schreiber said. "You really need to have the students interact and be specific."

The skills she's learned through faculty members, working at the Kogod Center for Business Communications and taking German classes, translate well with what she’ll be doing in Austria.

Schreiber remembers well what it was like to learn a language in high school, and is excited to work in that environment again.

"I'm looking forward to actually being able to make a difference in the schools," she said. "Having the opportunity to help someone learn a language is a really rewarding experience."

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Title: Alumnus Nick Kuhn Continues to Find New Ways to Give Back to AU
Author: Melissa Bevins ’02
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Abstract: Alumnus Nick Kuhn, Kogod/MBA ’86 is committed to giving back to AU.
Topic: Alumni Profile
Publication Date: 06/25/2015
Content:

Alumnus Nick Kuhn, Kogod/MBA '86, is one of the lucky few who knew early on what he wanted to do. Nick says that from the age of 22 he wanted to go into the real estate industry. He has worked full-time in real estate since he graduated from Lafayette College with an undergraduate degree in business and economics. But, that's not to say that he didn't explore other avenues. During college, Nick held a summer job with a stock brokerage and did an internship with a government contractor. However, since he took a job as a real estate agent right after graduation, he hasn't looked back.

As an MBA student at AU, Nick loved the hands-on nature of his work. He enjoyed working on case studies, participating in large group projects, and crafting presentations. Now, as an alumnus, he continues to support the current students who are engaging in this work. He has served for many years as a judge for Kogod's annual Case Competition, which he feels is a great opportunity for students to sharpen their communication skills, presentation style, and problem-solving techniques. Nick says he enjoys serving as a judge because of the opportunity to see the students in action. "I like seeing how they problem-solve, innovate, work as a team, think on their feet, utilize what they learn in the classroom to arrive at solutions, and defend their recommendations as if they were in the business world," he says.  

In addition to Kuhn's ongoing commitment to helping Kogod students, he has continued to seek out ways to participate actively in the life of AU. In past years, Kuhn has assisted with Dean searches for Kogod and served as a member of the Real Estate chapter in Kogod while it was still in existence, presenting homebuyer seminars to students and alumni. He has also recently become involved with Bender Library as a donor to its special collections.

Now, Nick is serving his first term on the AU Alumni Board. His term began in January 2014, and he says he is enjoying his service. He has taken the opportunity to get to know AU even better and to spend more time on campus, at meetings, events, and athletic events. His role on the Scholarship and Awards committee of the board allows him to play a direct role in the awarding of scholarships to current students as well as selecting alumni award winners. Nick says that he would like to see AU continue to expand its reach and involvement with international alumni communities.

When asked what advice he has for AU students and recent alumni hoping to follow his footsteps, Nick says, "Participate in internships to learn the nuts and bolts of the career. Real estate is demanding and requires a firm commitment."

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Title: Alumni Admissions Volunteer Chair Shares Passion for AU
Author: Patricia Rabb
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Abstract: Maria Luisa Ortega shares her passion for recruiting prospective students for AU.
Topic: Alumni
Publication Date: 04/07/2015
Content:

"Growing up in Puerto Rico, and being the daughter of Cuban exiles, I decided to attend AU because it was by far the most international school I had visited," says Maria Luisa Ortega, Kogod/BSBA '85. "Coming from a family where politics and culture were always part of our daily conversation, Washington, DC represented the perfect environment for me." 

After her first visit during her junior year in high school, Maria Luisa knew she wanted to attend college at AU. "I had studied French and Russian growing up, and I was desperate to practice it and mingle with students from different countries," she says.

Maria Luisa enjoys reminiscing about her time at AU in the 1980s. "AU's teachers were the nicest, most helpful and caring. I remember hearing horror stories from friends at other schools, and I felt so proud that my teachers were always there for me," she recalls. With the Reagan administration in office during her time at AU, she has fond memories of that era. "Studying in DC during the Reagan years was absolutely thrilling to me. The United States was at the top of its game, and I was at AU enjoying all that glory," she proclaims.   

During her junior year at AU, Maria Luisa secured an internship at an advertising and marketing firm in Georgetown. That internship turned into a part-time job during her senior year. While completing her degree at the Kogod School of Business, Maria Luisa also studied French, Russian, and Italian. She believes this combination helped her obtain the job she wanted as an account executive in a Miami advertising agency upon graduation. 

With her daughter, Claudia Iturregui, CAS/BA '16, a current student at AU, Maria Luisa is delighted to share a legacy tie. "The pride that I feel having my daughter at AU cannot be measured. To know that Claudia is having experiences very similar to the ones I had is something for which I have no words," she exclaims. Maria Luisa believes her experiences at AU in the 1980s aren't that different from her daughter's experiences today. "It's as international and political as always, and she tells me the teachers are as nice as ever," she says. 

Maria Luisa resides in Coral Gables, Florida with her son, Enrique Iturregui, a high school senior. She owns and manages a franchise called Mr. Pretzels with stores in Florida and Georgia. "I love this kind of business because it deals with everything I studied at Kogod: accounting, finance, advertising, and manufacturing," she says.

As a long-time AU Alumni Admissions Volunteer (AAV) and chair of the AAV network, volunteering her time to AU has been very satisfying for Maria Luisa. The AAV network includes alumni and parents who assist admissions in the recruitment of prospective students. It is the largest group of AU alumni volunteers with more than 600 members in 38 states and 14 countries. "To be able to help AU recruit students who show great intellect, who are passionate, and who want to leave a mark in this world, what is better than that," she exclaims. 

Reflecting on her role as AAV network chair, Maria Luisa says she wants to attract more alumni to share their pride and love for AU with prospective students. "It is time for us to give back to the school that helped us grow, that trained and prepared us for what was to come and that ultimately pushed us out into the world as success stories waiting to happen," she declares.

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Title: Social Innovation with a Global Focus: How Tighe Wall makes an impact
Author: Nina Cooperman, SPA/MPA '15
Subtitle:
Abstract: Tighe Wall, Kogod/MBA ’11 shares his thoughts on his time at AU and how his experience at Kogod helped him find a career with a truly global reach in social and digital strategy.
Topic: Alumni
Publication Date: 11/05/2014
Content:

As an editor and writer for the Princeton Review, Tighe Wall, Kogod/MBA '11, edited the guidebook to the 191 Best Business schools. When it came time to select a graduate program for himself, American University's Kogod School of Business was at the top of his list. Now, as a managing consultant in the social business global center of competence at IBM global business services in London, Tighe credits AU's global perspective to his success. Coming to AU, he says, gave him the opportunity to "build a small international business base in the U.S. and gain entrepreneurial skills."

During his time at Kogod, Tighe worked as an innovation and entrepreneurship research assistant with Professor Stevan Holmberg and interned with IBM. He says his experience "supplemented what I was learning with real world experience. AU has a real campus and all of the other attributes of living in the city are at your fingertips." 

Tighe continued to excel at Kogod and, as the commencement speaker for the business school's graduate students, urged his classmates to "keep taking chances and embrace new experiences."

His work caught the attention of the social business group, a small global group consisting of experts in the field within IBM who shape the company's point of view on the application of social networking tools and culture to business roles, processes and outcomes. He now works in London and has a portfolio of clients all over Europe.

Though he's moved to London, Tighe stays connected to the university. He is a member of the Alumni Board and serves as an alumni admissions volunteer. He sees these opportunities as ways to give back to the university, and as someone who went to AU for graduate school at Kogod, he brings a unique voice to the group.

According to Tighe, "Going through Kogod changed the way I think of the larger business community and global business. It broadened my perspective and fundamentally changed the way I understand how the business world works –the curriculum and the professors and thinking of business functions as a piece of how a larger organization operates." That global perspective has paid off.

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Title: Luchs Family Scholarship Recipient Molly Fallon Reaps Rewards of Hard Work, Giving Back
Author: Mike Rowan
Subtitle:
Abstract: Her appreciation for debate aside, Molly Fallon can agree with her scholarship donor on one of their core values—the importance of giving back and paying it forward.
Topic: Alumni
Publication Date: 05/29/2014
Content:

As commencement festivities took over campus and fellow classmates fondly reminisced about the best times of their college years, Molly Fallon, Kogod/BSBA ’14, recalled a different kind of memory—arguing.

Not just any kind of arguing, however. “I’ve really appreciated the disagreement and the debate that some of these classes have spurred from us,” said Fallon. “We’ve begun to disagree with one another in very constructive ways and bring some of our convictions forward.”

A Des Moines, Iowa native concentrating in marketing and finance, Fallon was chosen as the undergraduate speaker for the Kogod School of Business 2014 commencement. “Ironically, my fondest learning moments are not about agreement,” she shared with the Bender Arena crowd of faculty, family, and her fellow graduates. “While we might seek comfort in group settings, what we actually need is discomfort.”

For all her talk of discord and dissent, Fallon proved herself a natural collaborator in her time at AU. As a peer consultant in the Kogod Center for Business Communication, she assisted Kogod students with business writing and presentation skills. She also served as treasurer for the sorority Chi Omega, and worked together with about 30 students to oversee a portfolio of $350,000 in AU’s Student Managed Investment Fund. On top of that, she earned one of the school’s most prestigious group accomplishments—her team took home first place in the 2014 Annual Kogod Case Competition.

Recalling the case competition, she admitted, “That should have been one of the most stressful weeks of my life but it really was one of the most fun, honestly. It was a really great moment to leverage everything I had learned in the past four years here and have fun with it.”

Fallon’s leadership skills and community-oriented spirit were rewarded when she was named a recipient of the Luchs Family Scholarship for the 2013-2014 academic year. The application process for the scholarship asks students to provide evidence of deep involvement in the Kogod community. Humble, but attuned to the scholarship’s meaning, she reflected, “I think that my history of giving back to fellow students while at Kogod was something that identified me as a strong candidate.”

“I didn’t stand out in terms of numbers,” she shared. “To know that I was recognized for doing hard work, and that hard work wasn’t going unnoticed, [the fact that] it could be rewarded, and I could help myself through college by doing good work was a lot of positive reinforcement for me.”

A couple of days before giving her commencement address, Fallon had the opportunity to meet one of the benefactors of her scholarship, Kenneth J. Luchs, over lunch. The two found that they shared a passion for giving back.

“You can contribute in different ways,” Luchs said. “Money is only one way. Time is another way. Be a mentor to somebody.”

A strong history of civic engagement runs through Kenneth Luchs’ family. From the time his grandfather founded the family’s real estate business, Shannon & Luchs, in 1906, the family has been active in the growth of Washington, taking on leadership roles in various community organizations—a tradition that Luchs himself has carried on. A one-time American University student—taking night classes in real estate while he helped to run the family business by day—Luchs went on to serve on the AU Board of Trustees for 12 years. His afternoon with the recipients of his family’s scholarship marked 50 years—nearly to the day—since his father first introduced him to AU.

“I’d like [the recipients] to know that I’m available to be a mentor, and that I want them to be available as mentors to future students,” said Luchs. “It’s our duty to pay back whatever schools we’ve been educated at.”

Said Fallon after meeting Luchs, “He further instilled in me the belief that we can all do something to give back to those who have profoundly impacted our lives.”

Even as she found inspiration from getting to know her scholarship donor, Fallon had already been taking Luchs’ message to heart. While treasurer of Chi Omega, Fallon brought more scholarships to her sisters, stepping up efforts to identify and publicize existing opportunities, and creating new need-based awards by making minor budgeting adjustments. She has also taken it upon herself to be an advocate, often urging her sisters and students she advises as a peer consultant to apply for certain scholarships. She notes that students don’t realize what great candidates they are, and all they need is to know that the opportunities exist.

“I think that’s something really important—the idea of students helping students find and seek out scholarship opportunities,” said Fallon. “I am glad to have left that legacy.”






 

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Title: Business & Public Affairs: A Perfect Marriage
Author: Phil Recchio
Subtitle:
Abstract: Ben, Kogod/MBA ’11, and Christina Macfarland, SPA/MPA ’11, entrepreneurially apply their skills in South Florida, while giving back to AU.
Topic: Alumni Profile
Publication Date: 05/15/2014
Content:

Ben, Kogod/MBA ’11, and Christina Macfarland, SPA/MPA ’11, came to AU together, shortly after getting married in their native state of Florida, to pursue their individual academic and professional interests. Christina’s passion for nonprofit work and supporting her community led her to pursue a Master of Public Administration and,a graduate certificate in nonprofit management, whereas Ben built off his undergrad business degree by focusing his MBA studies on real estate and finance. Since graduation, they have returned to their home state to not only put their degrees to work, but also spread word of AU’s excellence while galvanizing the Florida alumni community. 

This past February, Christina and Ben hosted more than 60 AU alumni, parents, and friends in their Palm Beach home, and had the chance to catch up with their old neighbor, Vice President of Alumni Relations and Development, Dr. Thomas J. Minar. Before Dr. Minar delivered updates regarding campus plans and alumni initiatives within the South Florida community, Christina reminisced about her time working in the AU development department for corporate and foundation giving, and Ben remembered hunkering down in their condo during the infamous Snow-maggedon storm of 2010. 

These types of close relationships serve as a beautiful model for how the Office of Alumni Relations and Development seeks to engage AU alumni, and Christina and Ben are no strangers to the world of philanthropy and volunteering. Christina is a board member for the Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties, where fellow master’s alumna Jillian Vukusich, CAS/MA ’04, serves as vice president for community investment.  

Christina continues her educational pursuits, and is a recent graduate of "Leadership Palm Beach County," which kept her up to date on the latest trends in philanthropic and non profit leadership. This is especially important for those as involved in their communities as she is. She volunteers and has served on numerous committees for The Flagler Museum, March of Dimes, Historical Society of Palm Beach County, the Ryan Licht Sang Bipolar Foundation, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals. Presently, Christina performs research and writing for Women Corporate Directors, the only global membership organization of women corporate directors which serves as a catalyst for thought leadership and networking.

In addition to serving on his high school’s alumni board and helping to recruit great students to AU, Ben founded a local publication, Palm Beach Philanthropy, to showcase and educate the public to the diverse causes being supported right in their backyard. While philanthropy has always been a passion and a practice for the Macfarlands, Ben also puts his MBA to work running a boutique asset management firm that focuses on investing family office and institutional capital into self storage, student housing, and other special situations in real estate. The firm, where Ben serves as a partner and chief investment officer, has successfully acquired over two million square feet of real estate in the last two years.

The Macfarlands' collective energy and productivity is even more impressive in light of the fact they’ve accomplished so much all while raising their blossoming family. While their two young girls are a handful at home, Ben and Christina have a long standing history of supporting each other through thick and thin. While on campus, they could be seen attending a kick-off event to help rally support for Christina’s successful run for Editor-in-Chief of the SPA journal The Public Purpose, and nowadays they work to balance their busy schedules of business and board meetings with family meals and outings. 

Thankfully, the Macfarlands have continued their tradition of support as alumni by hosting the recent event for the South Florida AU Eagle community. As for the beautiful marriage of Ben’s business degree and Christina’s nonprofit policy focus, its power can be encapsulated by an Arthur Fried quote: “Private philanthropy is the last frontier of unconstrained freedom for private action in the public good.” AU is lucky to count this entrepreneurial and philanthropically minded young couple among its alumni family.

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Title: Building Upon a Family History
Author: Mike Rowan
Subtitle:
Abstract: After her valuable AU experience—and now her daughter’s—Mary McCarthy Hayford and her family are helping lay the groundwork for the university’s next generation.
Topic: Alumni
Publication Date: 03/27/2014
Content:

Stroll along the west side of the quad, passing Frisbees floating across the grass and cheerful student organizations camped outside of Mary Graydon, and at either end of campus you will find a building that has been transformed within the last five years. Across the street from the Katzen Arts Center, the Kogod School of Business opened a 20,000-square-foot expansion in 2008. A few hundred yards down, next to Bender Library, stands the newly reopened McKinley building, the state-of-the-art new home of the School of Communication. Though housing separate schools, and situated on opposite ends of campus, there’s a strong thread connecting the two of them—the Hayford family.

Mary McCarthy Hayford, Kogod/MBA ’78, did her graduate work at AU’s business school, but when she attended, it did not yet bear the Kogod name. It was simply called the School of Business Administration. Classes were housed in the Ward Circle Building, and offices were in the cozy quarters of the Hamilton Building (known then as Hamilton Hall).

“I remember picking AU based on my perception that the administrators and faculty were more accessible,” McCarthy Hayford shares as she recalls her AU experience. “I look back not only on the great full-time professors in subjects which appeal to me, but also on several adjunct professors who imparted real world experiences. For me, that exposure to professionals working in industry was essential to seeing how the theoretical was applied in the real world, and to envisioning the type of career I would want to pursue.”

When the Kogod School of Business announced plans for its expansion campaign, Mary and her husband, Warren, signed on to help by making a major contribution to the building. Their generosity is marked by a plaque adorning one of the new classrooms inside, which displays their names.

Then, three years later, when the effort to renovate McKinley began, the Hayfords were there again, eager to give back once more, naming the facility’s new audio editing suite.

Why jump in to support another major project, especially when the family had so significantly dedicated themselves to an effort close to their hearts just a few years earlier? One reason is that their daughter, Margaret, SOC/BA ’13, just finished a very positive undergraduate career in the School of Communication.

“We feel strongly that SOC and AU provided Margaret with the experience she needs to pursue her career goals,” McCarthy Hayford articulates. “AU was one of few schools where she could study film and graphic design while still broadening her education in history, science and social science. She capped off her SOC experience with a semester in the film school in Prague where she worked with a small group to create a professional-quality film.”

In addition to Margaret, the Hayfords are parents to Amanda, a 2006 alumna of Oberlin College, and Warren, who graduated from George Washington University in 2012. Ms. McCarthy Hayford’s husband, Warren John Hayford, is the president and managing director of the software company RatioServices, and is a director of the Warren J. and Marylou Hayford Family Foundation, which his parents founded. The foundation has been instrumental in the Hayfords’ gifts to American University.

Though she has graduated—as have her children—McCarthy Hayford remains an avid learner. While embarking on a path toward starting a new career, she has been steadily auditing courses at the university. “Wherever that takes me, I hope to keep close ties to AU.”

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Title: Legal Eagle Utilizes AU Education to Establish Domestic and International Niche
Author: Milt Jackson
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Abstract: AU alumnus’ expertise in law impacts domestic and international cases.
Topic: Alumni Profile
Publication Date: 03/15/2013
Content:

Philadelphia attorney and Kogod class of ’71 alumnus Theodore “Ted” Simon is having a wonderful career. Among other achievements, he has obtained reversals in the Pennsylvania and United States Supreme Courts. In addition to his longstanding successful representation of individuals and corporations locally, nationally, and internationally in state and federal trial and appellate matters (“white collar,” “blue collar” and “no collar”) he is a recognized authority on the subject of international extradition requests, and he has provided advice and counsel to multiple Americans abroad who have found themselves in challenging legal straits.

Accordingly, while accomplishing these achievements and elevating his law practice into a respected national and international niche – he also has become a “go-to guy” for advice and adept handling of high profile media driven cases - where he credits his AU experiences for assisting him to consistently achieve and maintain success.

After graduating from AU, and later, Temple University Law School, Ted joined the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and began to exercise his passion for litigation and criminal law. His drive, focus, creativity, and comprehensive approach eventually earned him a listing as one of Philadelphia Magazine’s “Best Lawyers in Philadelphia;” a selection as a “Pennsylvania Super Lawyer,” and an invited membership in the National Trial Lawyers Organization (a group composed of the top 100 trial lawyers from each state).

Additionally in 2012, he was sworn in as first vice president of the NACDL, a position he relishes because it allows him to play a more specific part in ensuring justice and due process and at the same time recognizing the important and noble work of criminal defense lawyers around the country.

Communicating his passion for justice and due process is another of Ted’s many talents. His most recent appearance, as a guest on CNN and Soledad O’Brien’s “Starting Point” is a case in point. On the show, Ted presented an articulate and seasoned perspective on the complex legal considerations surrounding bail for Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius – who is currently accused of murder in South Africa.

He told O'Brien that Pistorius was a good candidate for bail. He is called upon as a legal expert by honing his speaking as a sought-after speaker for legal seminars across the nation and his numerous on-camera appearances on all major networks and shows including NBC’s The Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CBS’s The Early Show, Larry King Live, Oprah Winfrey Show, ABC’s 20/20, and NBC’s Dateline.

As a result of his recognized communications skills and legal ability, Ted’s client list has included Michael Fay (Singapore caning), Amanda Knox (college student acquitted of murder in Italy), boxing promoter Don King, Gregory Porter (college student accused but all charges dismissed in 2011 protest in Egypt), Chipper Jones (civil defense), New York real estate heir Robert Durst (favorable resolution of federal firearms offenses in Pennsylvania after acquittal in Texas murder and dismemberment case), NBA forward Dante Cunningham (dismissal of alleged drug and other criminal offenses), Drexel’s starting guard Derrick Thomas (dismissal of assault charges) as well as other clients involved in high-profile legal matters.

Ted credits AU for helping to provide a solid academic foundation for his success. He says, “I was just 16, leaving home for the first-time, and the American University environment, the teachers and classmates, soon to be life-long friends could not be more warm, welcoming and supportive. In hindsight it provided the absolute perfect opportunity to grow, excel academically, and provide a rich and enduring network of beloved friends that began the first day and happily remains so today.”

When asked about how he feels about the practice of law after nearly 40 years, he answered, “I feel the same, but more so - it is a gift to be a lawyer, providing care, assistance, and representation in some of the worst of times, whether a person is criminally facing loss of liberty or civilly and entitled to redress and compensation.”

In response to Ted’s appreciation of American University and for all the university has done for him, Ted recently offered his network, time, and support in assisting with planning of an alumni engagement event in downtown Philadelphia. The event was a resounding success due to the participation of Ted and other alumni.

While the law is clearly his personal and professional passion, Ted's continued relationship with his AU Zeta Beta Tau brothers is primarily a personal passion. He says “primarily” because privilege and privacy protects their confidentiality as even here he has been called upon professionally in “life-altering situations.” Ted couldn’t have been happier “to have their back when they needed it most.”

His relationship with the “ZBT Powerhouse of Excellence” brotherhood began when he attended AU and has only strengthened since then. Ted is everlastingly thankful and appreciative of his classmates who have remained truly supportive of his work, accomplishments, and resulting national and international presence in the law.

So the next time you hear the words, “legal expert” mentioned during a news broadcast, pay close attention. It may be that an AU alumnus, by the name of Ted Simon, is about to hold court.

Tags: Alumni,Kogod School of Business,Law
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Title: Real-Life Experiences of AU Alumnus Hits the Big Screen in Blockbuster Hit Argo
Author: Stephanie Block
Subtitle:
Abstract: American University alumnus Mark Lijek, Kogod/MBA ’76, has lived quite the adventure—one big enough to create Hollywood Oscar buzz.
Topic: Alumni
Publication Date: 12/12/2012
Content:

American University alumnus Mark Lijek, Kogod/MBA ’76, has lived quite the adventure—one big enough to create Hollywood Oscar buzz. Lijek was one of six employees lucky enough to escape the protests and attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Iran more than 30 years ago. Their story is the premise of the blockbuster movie Argo.

Lijek arrived in Iran in July 1979 and was only there a few short months before he nearly missed becoming a hostage. With his wife, Cora, by his side along with five others, the group became known as the “houseguests” of the Canadian Embassy for about 10 weeks before leaving the country posing as a film crew and making it back to safely to the U.S.

It was not fear as much as boredom that got the best of Lijek. “Boredom was one of the hardest things to face,” Lijek says. The group played scrabble, and he read many books, writing each title down as he completed it to help record the passing of time.

A recent story published on MyNorthWest.com chronicled details regarding the sequence of events leading to Lijek and the other officers escaping the embassy. Interviews with Lijek and other houseguests will be a special feature of the DVD release of Argo next year. However, as with any film, there is only so much time to share the story. “The movie is a slice of the real story which was why I wrote the book The Houseguests: A Memoir of Canadian Courage and CIA Sorcery,” Lijek says.

Lijek completed a Master in Business Administration at AU, attending class part-time in the evenings while he served in the United States Army during the day. “As an administrative officer for the State Department, I used my graduate degree a fair amount. It prepared me quite a bit,” he says.

Lijek moved to Washington, D.C. from Seattle to complete his undergraduate degree at Georgetown University. He retired from the Foreign Service to spend more time with his wife and children. He lives just outside of Seattle and keeps busy by promoting his new book and managing his website, marklijek.com.   

Tags: Alumni,Alumni Relations,Alumni Relations (KSB),Alumni Update,Kogod School of Business
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Title: Alumni Offer an Unconventional Introduction to Shanghai
Author: Melissa Bevins '02
Subtitle:
Abstract: Jamie Barys and Kyle Long met while studying abroad and have turned their passion into a business.
Topic: Alumni Profile
Publication Date: 11/15/2012
Content:

When Jamie Barys, SOC/BA ’07, and Kyle Long, Kogod/BSBA ’07, studied abroad together in Beijing during their junior year, they left knowing that they wanted to return to China. 

Upon graduation, Kyle moved to Shanghai to teach. Jamie had a corporate job in Washington, D.C. for a while before deciding that it wasn’t for her and moving to Xiamen, China to work as a food writer. The two reconnected and decided to start a business together in Shanghai. 

Both recalled hearing the age-old advice that success comes with doing something about which you are passionate and decided that they wanted to love what they do. Jamie loves to eat. Kyle loves to run and eat. Both love finding off-the-beaten-path places and sharing their findings with friends and family. 

These shared passions led them to start UnTour Shanghai, an urban adventure tourism company specializing in unique and personal day tours, including jogging sightseeing tours, culinary tours, and cultural excursions. Jamie serves as the Chief Eating Officer while Kyle serves as the Chief Running Officer.

Jamie recalls that her first dinner in Beijing was a bad experience. She didn’t speak the language and couldn’t order, and the person who was ordering for her party decided to play a practical joke on the group. She wants to help others avoid that experience and to take the guesswork out of eating well in Shanghai.

“I know how intimidating it can be,” says Jamie, of traveling to a new city and trying to partake in the local foods without speaking the language. To avoid this and help tourists get off on the right foot, UnTour Shanghai provides all its customers with a welcome package that includes restaurant and dish recommendations in the neighborhood.

UnTour Shanghai offers a schedule of weekly public tours as well as several options for private group tours. All tours have a limited number of spaces, as Jamie and Kyle aim to keep them intimate and personalized. 

December 1 will mark the two year anniversary of UnTour Shanghai. Both Jamie and Kyle are excited to celebrate the milestone and look forward to what the future holds for the company they’re growing together.

Tags: Alumni,Alumni Newsletter,Alumni Relations,Alumni Update,China,School of Communication,Kogod School of Business
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Title: Young Alum Builds on Valuable Relationships
Author: Rebecca Youngerman, SPA/BA '00, SPA/MPA '12
Subtitle:
Abstract: Rich Golaszewski, Kogod/BSBA ’07, has aspired to achieve since he first came to American University.
Topic: Alumni Profile
Publication Date: 10/10/2012
Content:

Rich Golaszewski, Kogod/BSBA ’07, has aspired to achieve since he first came to American University in 2003 as a freshman from Philadelphia.

He used that drive to launch a professional career in financial services. Golaszewski works in New York as a vice president at Nomura Securities International—a leading global investment bank—in Equity Derivatives sales and trading.
 
“The encouragement to go above and beyond has been especially valuable,” he said. “At Kogod, I learned the art of networking and the value of relationships, which has proved extremely beneficial in my career.“

On October 20, Golaszewski will receive the Rising Star Award, which recognizes young alumni who are already making significant contributions to greater society through professional or philanthropic work.

“I am deeply honored to receive this award; it truly means a lot…I continue to try to spend my free time on things that I really care about, and Kogod is at the top of the list,” Golaszewski says.

Golaszewski found his niche on campus through academics and a range of student leadership activities. Participation in the Student Managed Investment Fund (then the Kogod Finance Group) was particularly impactful. Gaining valuable skills in investment management and the stock market aided in building industry knowledge, and the leadership roles built softer traits such as public speaking and organization.

For Golaszewski, peers were mentors. He says, “The outgoing student body always had you thinking how you could do more to better your chances at landing the job you wanted, and this really resonated in me and motivated me to explore different industries through internships and challenging coursework.”

Golaszewski has found meaningful and lasting ways to give back to the university. Last fall, he helped conceptualize and launch the New York Finance Network, a new affinity group open to American University graduates working in the finance and real estate industries.

Golaszewski regularly connects with current students, offering guidance and advice about making the most of their time on campus and beyond.

He also has demonstrated his leadership through financial support of the school, and is encouraging others to do the same by serving as a signatory on the recent solicitation for the Kogod Dean’s Fund that was sent to nearly 1,500 fellow supporters.

Golaszewski’s Kogod relationships are very personal. He is the proud older brother of Jesse Golaszewski, Kogod/BSBA ’12, and is newly engaged to a fellow alum, Shannon Westfall, Kogod/BSBA ’07.

Tags: Alumni,Alumni Board,Alumni Newsletter,Alumni Relations,Alumni Relations (KSB),Alumni Update,Alumni Weekend,Kogod School of Business,Kogod Undergraduate Finance Group
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