Student Life Advisory Council

Student Life Advisory Council

The Student Life Advisory Council provides advice to the division leadership on its overall strategic direction, advocates for its programs with other constituencies, and assists with the expansion of the division’s ability to serve Purdue students through development activities.

Meet Our Members

View our Emeritus Members

Jack Calhoun - Chair

Jack Calhoun

Jack Calhoun attended Indiana University School of Music, received a B.S. from Purdue University, and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School. While at Purdue, Jack was a member and officer of the Purdue Varsity Glee Club, President of the Purdue Student Union Board, Chairman of Iron Key, member of Omicron Delta Kappa honorary and received the G.A. Ross award upon graduating. 

Jack is an experienced domestic and international executive in customer and retail business. He works as a Senior Advisor at McKinsey & Company, based in San Francisco. At McKinsey, Jack advises CEOs, boards and teams in role strategic, operational, organizational and offers creative guidance.

Jack spent 12 years at Banana Republic, a division of Gap, Inc., leading the company from bricks-and-mortar to an integrated digital business. He served as Global President for the company for eight years, overseeing all aspects of running a $3 billion global business. Prior to Gap Inc., Jack was EVP Brand Management and Advertising at Charles Schwab & Co. His early career was spent leading teams at Foote, Cone & Belding and Young & Rubicam, as well as in marketing positions at Levi Strauss & Company and The Procter & Gamble Company. 

Jack currently serves as Vice Chair of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco (the country’s third largest) and Executive Board member of the San Francisco Opera (the world’s second largest). He also served for five years on the Board of Directors for the national non-profit GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). 

Diamond Adamitis

Diamond Adamitis

Diamond graduated from Purdue University in 2016 with a BS from the School of Science. At Purdue, Diamond served numerous roles within Dining & Catering. Spending over four years as a student employee, Diamond worked her way into the position of Windsor Dining Court Student Manager and Coordinator. This position opened doors to become a student representative for dining and student employment during STAR (Summer Transition, Advising and Registration), for the Dining & Catering Student Advisory Council, and the Student Life Advisory Board.

During her tenure, she worked as a student supervisor at other dining locations, served meals during PALS (Purdue Athletes Life Success) summer camp, and assisted with Jumpstart, an early employment program. As a student, she participated in ecology and entomology research, Purdue Community Standards Board, club rugby, and LYNX of Omega Phi Chi Multicultural Sorority Inc.

Diamond lives in her hometown of Indianapolis, IN working as a chemist for AIT Bioscience. She has been an active community member, volunteering as an assistant lab leader for STEM Scouts, a mentor for Starfish Initiative and a clarinet player in the Pride of Indy community band.

Kathy Adkins

Kathy Adkins

Kathy Adkins graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1981. While at Purdue, Kathy was a member of the “All-American” Marching Band, participated in intramural sports and served as a residence hall counselor. After working for Purdue as a 4-H Extension Agent, Kathy decided to become a full-time mom. 

In 1991 Kathy started the CREW Corporation. CREW is a specialty electrical contractor that also completes validation, commissioning and technical writing projects and employs 85 employees with revenue averaging $12 million/year. Kathy is now owner and president of the CREW Corporation.

Kathy is a member of the Board of Directors for the Indiana chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association and also serves on both the Apprenticeship and Negotiation committees. She is a life-long supporter of 4-H and has served as a 4-H Leader and on several different 4-H Boards and still judges many different 4-H competitions each summer. She lives on a 20-acre farm in Boone County, Indiana with her husband Jerry, four horses, some barn cats and a poodle. She has two grown children, Grant and Amanda, and one granddaughter, Kaelyn.

Gary Cummings

Gary Cummings

After earning his Bachelor of Science in Mathematics with a minor in Industrial Engineering from Purdue, Gary Cummings earned his Master of Science in Industrial and Operations Engineering from the University of Michigan. He also attended the Executive Development Program at Cornell University in 1998.

Gary recently retired from General Motors after 32 years of service in 2009. He held several positions with GM, including time in Brazil, where he served in an executive role that oversaw product development in Africa, Latin America and the Middle East. He won the 2004 U.S. Black Engineer of the Year award in the Corporate Promotion of Higher Education category. Since retiring, Gary has served as the assistant vice president at a local community college, where he works to grow strategic alliances between the college and four-year institutions. He currently serves on the Board of Regents for Orchard Lake Schools in Orchard Lake, Mich. And serves as an adjunct professor at Walsh College in Troy, Mich.

While at Purdue, Gary was a member of the All-American Marching Band, the Symphony and Basketball bands, and the Reamer Club, where he was a Boilermaker Special pilot. He is a member of Kappa Kappa Psi, the National Honorary Band Fraternity. He served as a district and national officer for the fraternity.

Gary has been a strong supporter of Purdue and engineering, serving on the Dean of Engineering Advisory Committee from 2003-17. During this time, Gary strengthened corporate relations between GM and Purdue and helped produce numerous opportunities for students to engage with engineers and executives. Gary and his wife, Lynn, have two sons, a daughter-in-law, and a grandson.

J. Richard Cummings

J. Richard Cummings

Richard Cummings is a 1967 BSEE graduate with a 1969 MSIA degree from the Krannert School of Management. After Krannert, Rich joined The First National Bank of Chicago (now part of JP Morgan Chase) and spent many years in commercial and real estate banking. Later on, Rich joined the Mizuho Corporate Bank Chicago Branch where he managed a portfolio of electric and gas utilities, asset-backed securities and metropolitan Chicago area large corporate accounts. 

After retiring, Rich joined the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation as part of the Resolutions and Receiverships Division, liquidating failed banks resulting from the financial crisis. For the last three years Rich has been a contractor with the Urban Partnership Bank of Chicago, helping the bank resolve a problem loan portfolio taken over from a failed bank. 

Rich is married to Maryann K. Miskiewicz and has two sons, Andrew (31) and Gonzalo (30). Maryann is the owner of MKM Consulting, Inc., a systems implementation and needs assessment consultant dealing mostly with public entities. 

While at Purdue, Rich was active with the “All-American” Marching Band and Symphony Band. Rich is a native of Brownsburg, Indiana. He and Maryann continue to live near downtown Chicago and are active with a local church and schools.

Anthony Denhart

Tony Denhart

Anthony Denhart graduated from Purdue University in 1989 with a Bachelor of Science degree from the Polytechnic Insitute. While at Purdue, he became a member of Circle Pines Cooperative, IEEE, AET and participated in intramural sports. He served the Cooperative community in a number of roles, including President and Vice President of Circle Pines Cooperative.

Upon graduation from Purdue, Anthony moved to New York to join GE Power’s Field Engineering Leadership Program. He spent 22 years in numerous roles within GE Power. During those 22 years he found a passion of helping college students. That passion led him to his current role. In 2012 he joined the GE Corporate team as the Global University Relations Director. He also serves on the advisory boards of the GE-Reagan Foundation Scholarship Program, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers National Industry Partners Council and Purdue Honors College.

Anthony enjoys spending time outdoors and with family and friends. He and his wife, Rhonda (BSM ‘89), are the proud parents of Jake (BSIM ‘17) and Nicole (Sophomore at Purdue).

Thomas W. Lester

Thomas Lester

Thomas W. Lester earned all of his mechanical engineering degrees from Purdue (BSME with Highest Distinction in 1970, MSME in 1972, and Ph.D. in 1974). Tom is professor emeritus and dean emeritus at the University of Kentucky. Prior to his tenure at Kentucky, Tom served as professor and chair of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Louisiana State University and professor of Nuclear Engineering at Kansas State University. 

A specialist in combustion of fossil fuels and incineration of hazardous wastes, Tom worked as an experimental engineer at Pratt & Whitney Aircraft, a visiting scientist at the EPA’s Research Triangle Park research laboratories, and as a visiting scholar at the Karlsruhe (Germany) Institute of Technology. He served on numerous scientific advisory panels for the Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation and the Environmental Protection Agency, testified before the House Armed Services Committee on chemical munitions disposal and was a co-editor of EPA’s monograph on the formation and control of pollution from pulverized coal combustion. 

While at Purdue, he was a percussionist in the “All-American” Marching Band and the Symphony Band, a tenor saxophonist in the Variety Band, and served as supply officer his junior and senior years. He was a member of Tomahawk, Omicron Delta Kappa, and was president of Purdue’s chapter of Tau Beta Pi, the all engineering honorary. He was named a Purdue University Fellow in 1970. 

Tom and his late wife, Susan Ballard Lester (BSHE with honors 1970, MSHE 1972), are the parents of Dr. Christina S. Lane (BSIDE 1996) of New Albany, Indiana and Elizabeth A. Lester of Atlanta, Georgia. Tom and his wife Frances have five grandchildren, ages 1 to 14. Tom is also a step-father to Frances’ daughter, Amy Johnston Peabody, of Lexington.

Drew Mattison

Drew Mattison

Drew Mattison graduated from Purdue in 1994 with a Bachelor of Science in Visual Design Engineering from the Interdisciplinary Engineering (IDE) program. While attending Purdue he was active musically in the “All-American” Marching Band Drumline, Boiler Brass, Winter Drumline and Kappa Kappa Psi. He was also a University Residences Hall Counselor at Cary Quad, played intramural baseball and was part of the Omicron Delta Kappa honorary. He went on turn a MBA from Michigan State University in 2001.

Drew is a connector, changemaker and advocate of helping clients get things done. He has spent the majority of his 25-year career where business and strategy intersect with design and visual communication, having started that journey as a car designer at Chrysler’s Advanced Packaging Studio working on concept and next-generation vehicles. He spent the first 15 years of his career in the design and creative technology space, expanding roles in both start-ups and Fortune 100 companies. This work culminated in his role as the Global Director of Industry Marketing for Autodesk.

After making the leap into the agency and consulting world, Drew has lead several design consultancies as a chief revenue officer with responsibility for all top-line revenue and stewardship of company culture. He has successfully helped deliver effective communication strategies, drive new enterprise strategy alignment and activation, build change management initiatives and create organizational readiness and customer experience plans for global brands such as UPS, BNY Mellon, Procter & Gamble, Abbott, Nike, Ford, BMW, American Express and Apple. Drew is currently a partner at Tremendousness, a boutique visual design consultancy.

Drew is active outside of work, volunteering at his children’s school, coaching his son’s travel baseball team, mentoring at the Mike Illitch School of Business at Wayne State and occasionally playing in jazz combos around the Metro Detroit area. He was also a University Residences Executive-in-Residences in the fall of 2018 and is supported the EiR program with strategy and planning development.

Drew lives with his wife, Kendra (ChE ’94) in Birmingham, Michigan, with their children Will and Lauren.

Bob Miles

Bob Miles

Bob Miles is a 1963 Purdue alumnus in civil engineering. While on campus, he was a member of Fairway Cooperative and the Student Cooperative Association, where he held several leadership positions in both.  He was also an active member of the Purdue Reamer Club.

Bob started his career with the Ceco Corporation, a national supplier of construction materials and concrete forming services. He was Regional Manager of three offices in Florida. Following his employment with Ceco, he owned his own company, Bob L. Miles and Associates, a manufacturers’ representative selling to the construction industry. He sold the business in 2001 and retired in 2002.

Upon retirement and a subsequent move to Maggie Valley, North Carolina, Bob remained active with the Kiwanis Club of Waynesville, North Carolina, serving as the club’s newsletter editor and chair of the 3rd Grade Dictionary Project. He also chaired the advisory council for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Haywood County and served on the Haywood County Child Abuse and Neglect Task Force. He is an active supporter of Clothes to Kids, providing clothing wardrobes to disadvantaged school children. Upon moving to Lafayette, Bob became and is currently a member of the Kiwanis Club of Lafayette.

Bob is a staunch supporter and advocate for the College of Human Sciences. He co-chaired, with his wife Joyce, the College of Consumer and Family Sciences (CFS) development team for the $13 million planned-giving campaign. Bob and Joyce are both on the Purdue Center for Families Advisory Council and are advocates for the Center. Both Bob and Joyce served on the President’s Council Leadership Council. Bob and Joyce were the lead donors for the Bob L. and Joyce Beery Miles “Outdoor Learning Space” at Lyles-Porter Hall. As a result of Joyce’s influence as a Purduette, Bob has become a supporter of PMO. They have a practice room named in Bailey Hall and also mentor several Purduettes. They have endowed two scholarships at Purdue and maintain relationships with their scholarship students while at Purdue and following their graduation. 

Joyce Beery Miles

Joyce Beery Miles

Joyce is a Purdue graduate in Health and Human Sciences with a major in Home Economics Education. Her professional career was spent in Jacksonville, Florida for 31-1/2 years with the Duval County Schools. She and alum husband, Bob, have been active in numerous Purdue organizations including the College of Consumer and Family Sciences (now the College of Health and Human Sciences), Center for Families Advisory Board, PMO (Joyce is a former Purduette) and Women for Purdue. Joyce and her husband were both members of a co-op house during their years on campus. 

In retirement, Joyce has focused on preserving the history of home economics as she has portrayed the founder, Ellen Swallow Richards throughout the country for the 100th Anniversary. She has been honored as the modern biographer of Ellen Swallow Richards. She also has been active with Women for Purdue, and as a Trustee for the Florida State University Foundation, she was responsible for initiating the Women for Florida State University, modeling the Purdue organization. Joyce and Bob currently live in Maggie Valley, North Carolina.

Lorrie Newhouse

Lorrie Newhouse

Lorrie Newhouse graduated from Purdue in May 2015 with her degree in Agricultural and Biological Engineering. During her time at Purdue, Lorrie served in a number of roles within Residential Life; notably as the Governess of Windsor Residence Hall Club her junior year, on the Student Life Student Advisory Council her junior and senior years, and as president of the Residence Hall Association her senior year. 

Highlights of her tenure include organizing an overnight retreat for all of the residence hall clubs, organizing a fall break trip to Washington, D.C. for 112 residents, attending and presenting at state, regional, and national conferences, bidding to host the regional conference at Purdue, as well as leading exceptional groups of young student leaders. 

Lorrie now lives in Washington, Indiana, where she works for Grain Processing Corporation as the Alcohol and Utilities Division Engineer. She has been quite active in the community in the short amount of time she has called Daviess County home. Lorrie graduated from the Leadership Daviess County program in June of 2016, is a 4-H Club Leader, and serves on the Daviess County Purdue Extension Board.

John Pierce

John Pierce

John Pierce graduated from Purdue in 1980 with a BS in Economics from the Krannert School of Management.  While at Purdue he served on the Old Masters Central Committee, the Student Concert Committee, the Purdue University Press Editorial Board and as President of Gimlet; was a vocalist for Purdue’s Variety Band senior year and a member of the University Choir during his first three years; and was a member of Sigma Chi Fraternity, Skull and Crescent and Omicron Delta Kappa.

John received his JD from the University of Texas School of Law in 1984 and joined the Los Angeles firm of Adams, Duque & Hazeltine as a civil litigator.  In 1987, John joined the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Diego as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, and also served as an AUSA in the U.S. Attorney’s Offices in Washington, DC, and Alexandria, VA.

During his 14 years as an AUSA, John investigated and prosecuted complex frauds, organized crime, and homicides. He conducted more than 70 trials in multiple jurisdictions, coordinated international investigations and extraditions, presented hundreds of investigations to grand juries, and briefed and argued appeals. He served on the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force and the Attorney General’s Healthcare Fraud Advisory Committee.

John left the government in 2000 to re-enter private practice. He is a trial attorney headquartered in Washington D.C., whose practice focuses on white collar criminal defense, primarily in healthcare, and civil litigation in securities fraud and whistleblower cases.

John founded his current firm Themis in 2010. He is admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States, several United States Circuit Courts of Appeal and District Courts, the United States Court of Federal Claims, and is a member of the bars of the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, California, and Illinois. He has served as General Counsel to The Woods Academy, a private school in Bethesda, Maryland, and coaches several youth sports teams.

John and Roxana Pierce live in Bethesda, Maryland, with their daughters Amanda and Natalie.

Teresa Roche

Teresa Roche

Teresa Roche earned all her degrees from Purdue (BA in 1979, MS in 1981 and Ph.D. in 2000). In 2001, Teresa and her family, David and Kai Monahan moved to Fort Collins, Colorado where she continued her work as a global human resources executive in high technology companies, including Hewlett-Packard and Agilent Technologies.

Since 2016, Teresa has served as Chief Human Resources Officer for the City of Fort Collins. She is a member of Colorado State University College of Business’ HR Edge and a Fellow with Harvard University’s Learning Innovations Laboratory.

In 2005, Teresa was an Old Master and in 2009 received the Distinguished Alumni award from the College of Education. In 2019, Teresa returned to campus as an Executive in Residence, which she says was a transformative experience.

During Teresa’s first year as an undergraduate she lived at Earhart Hall, became a member of the Delta Gamma sorority and held several leadership positions in the house. Teresa’s last year was spent as a residence hall counselor in Shreve Hall.

As an undergraduate, Teresa was involved in the Old Masters program, as a host and on the Central Committee. She was an executive member of the Association for Women Students and started a new department in the Purdue Student Government called Women’s Awareness and was a co-founder of the Communications Council to support the dialogue between students and members of the student government. Teresa was a member of Iron Key, Omicron Delta Kappa, Kappa Delta Pi and Phi Alpha Theta. In 1979, Teresa received the Bruce Kendall Award and a Mortar Board fellowship to pursue her graduate studies.

During her Master’s, Teresa was an intern in the Dean of Students and Center for Career Opportunities and the Senior Staff Resident in Grad House East.

Teresa believes her long journey at Purdue continues to have a major impact on her life.

Greg Sinise

Greg Sinise

Greg Sinise completed his BS and MBA degrees in Industrial Management at Krannert. Wanting to be close to Purdue, his first assignment was in Indianapolis with Indiana National Bank, where he spent time in their Investment Banking division as well as Information Technology. He went on to work at Eli Lilly, where he enjoyed a career in IT, manufacturing and procurement. 

Wanting to enter consulting, he joined Ernst and Whinney (which became Ernst and Young), spending a very fruitful consulting career in manufacturing, marketing and IT consulting. His last three years were spent with seven other partners, launching the strategic planning practice for the firm. After spending five days a week on the road for 10-plus years, he decided to come back home to Indianapolis, where he managed a number of IT consulting firms. In 2000, he started his own marketing firm and ad agency, which he still owns today. His current assignment is the chief business development officer - North America for a UK-based IT consulting company, trying to create a presence in the U.S. 

When not working, he tries to spend as many minutes as he can on Purdue’s campus in some volunteer capacity. He has been deeply involved in the Greek system, both with his own chapter, his son’s chapter as well as at the national level. For the last two years, he has been the chair of the Fraternity and Sorority Alumni Advisory Council for Purdue, a very rewarding experience, in part because at the same time, his son has served as president of IFC, which has allowed them to work together for the betterment of some 6,000-plus Purdue students.

Julie Vanier

Julie Vanier

Julie Vanier graduated from the University of Rhode Island in 1986 with a Bachelor of Arts in English and a minor in Journalism. Julie’s involvement with Purdue University is a result of her passion for education and her respect for the Boilermaker community. Her oldest son, Jack earned a Bachelor of Science in Selling & Sales Management with a minor in Management and currently serves as a Senior Derivatives Trading Specialist for Charles Schwab in Indianapolis. Her youngest son, Bo (’22), is considering a similar major with a focus on management. Julie and her husband John also have a third son, Charlie, who recently graduated from the University of Alabama with a Bachelor of Science in Business Family & Consumer Sciences/Human Sciences degree.

Julie serves on the major gifts team at Clark University (Worcester, Mass.) where she has been charged with expanding and strengthening alumni and community connections and support as she has focused on the same for other educational organizations and institutions. Julie has worked in similar leadership capacities for Brown University (Providence, R.I.), Tabor Academy (Marion, Mass.) and Year Up (the country’s single, fastest-growing non-profit, where she remains involved as a consultant and volunteer) as Director of Development. Her career includes extensive work in advertising, marketing, sales and philanthropy.

In addition to Purdue’s Student Life Advisory Council, Julie serves on the University of Alabama’s Student Life Leadership Council, the Board of the Highlander Institute (a nationally recognized organization specializing in blended and personalized learning models creating equity through education) and the Audubon Society of Rhode Island.

Julie and her husband John live in Barrington, R.I. where they spend as much time as possible boating and at the beaches with family and friends.

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