LDP Cohort 2021-2022

LDP Cohort 2021-2022


Betsy Barre Headshot

Betsy Barre

Executive Director, Center for the Advancement of Teaching

Betsy Barre is the Executive Director of the Center for the Advancement of Teaching and an affiliate faculty member in the Department for the Study of Religions. She received her PhD from Florida State University in 2009 and spent the first five years of her career teaching philosophy and religious studies at Lake Forest College, Marymount Manhattan College, and Rice University. She was appointed a founding Assistant Director of Rice’s Center for Teaching Excellence in 2014, and promoted to Associate Director in 2016. She has been a member of the Wake Forest University community for two years, moving into her current position in May of 2018. In this role, she oversees the strategic direction of the center and manages university partnerships critical to that direction. She hopes the Leadership Development Program will improve her ability to motivate and inspire diverse teams to meet their individual and collective potential.


Karen Brown

Karen Brown

Director, Student Financial Services

Karen Brown is the Director of Student Financial Services in the Financial Services Department. She celebrated her 15th year of employment with Wake Forest in January 2021. She graduated from Wake Forest University with a Bachelor of Science in Business. Prior to coming to WFU, she worked in the Credit and Collections Department at US Airways for 16 years. Karen would like to work on the following goals in the Leadership Development Program: how to think strategically in order to make Student Financial Services a leader in providing the best financial experiences to our students and their families; how to cultivate participative leadership so her team feels self-empowered to accomplish the vision of WFU; and implement better strategies in order to have a better work-life balance. She is excited to be participating in the Leadership Development Program and is looking forward to learning new skills.


Roger Brown

Roger Brown

Director of Food and Beverage, Graylyn Conference Center

Roger Brown is the Director of Food and Beverage at Graylyn Conference Center, a position he has held for the last 5 years. He studied business at Northern Arizona University and enlisted in the United States Navy before beginning his career in hospitality. He has more than 15 years of food and beverage experience at the executive level and more than 25 years food and beverage management experience at private clubs and luxury hotels, including Ritz-Carlton, Tradition Golf Club, Miramonte Resort and Spa, and The Center Club. Roger believes that his extended food and beverage experience in the luxury hospitality field can be complemented by the Leadership Development Program at Wake Forest University and will be beneficial to his ongoing leadership development.


James Byrd

James Byrd

Director of Physical Security Technologies and Deacon OneCard, Residence Life and Housing

James Byrd is the Director of Physical Security Technology and Deacon OneCard in the Residence Life and Housing division of Campus Life. He came to Wake Forest University in 2010 after serving for 16 years in multiple roles within facilities and project management at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He has both a BA and MA in Church Music and has served for more than 30 years as a bi-vocational minister of music in a local church. James has earned both the Certified Educational Facilities Professional (CEFP) certification through APPA and the Certified Protection Professional (CPP) certification through ASIS. He is a proud fourth generation veteran and served as a commissioned officer in the North Carolina Army National Guard. James is excited about being selected for the Leadership Development Program cohort and the opportunity it affords to continue learning and growing and to strengthen his skills as a collaborator and leader.


Brian Calhoun

Brian Calhoun

Associate Professor of the Practice, Department of Education

Brian Calhoun, MBA, MA, NCC, LCMHCA, is currently an Associate Professor of the Practice in the Wake Forest Department of Education where he has been a faculty member since 2012. Brian is also a Wake Forest University alumnus. He currently helps co-chair the Wake Forest Committee on Information Technology. Brian is looking forward to being part of the Leadership Development Program to focus on critical leadership topics and monthly collaboration with peers and thought leaders on campus.


Stephanie Carter

Stephanie Carter

Director of Residence Life, Residence Life & Housing

Stephanie K. Carter has served as the Director of Residence Life since February 2017. Stephanie holds a bachelor’s degree in English/Creative Writing from the Florida State University, a master’s degree in College Student Affairs Administration from the University of Georgia, and a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership and Management from Capella University. Stephanie has worked professionally within the field of Residence Life and Housing since 2002 at various institutions. She consistently seeks opportunities for development to hone her leadership skills and abilities. Amid the pandemic, she found herself needing to stretch and grow in a different manner as the landscape of her work has/is changing which was her motivation for applying. Stephanie hopes to continue working on her acknowledged (and learn of new) areas of growth through both formal/informal conversations. She believes in the importance of having a growth mindset and recognizes when you stop learning you stop growing.


Veronica Escamilla-Brady

Veronica Escamilla-Brady

Business Manager, Z. Smith Reynolds Library

Veronica Escamilla-Brady is the Business Manager for Z. Smith Reynold Library, she joined Wake Forest University in March 2020. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration from the University of Colorado. Before joining Wake Forest University, she was the Innovation Director for the City of Tyler, Texas, and spent her time facilitating public-private partnerships, managing the city’s makerspace, and overseeing the employment development department. Veronica was encouraged to apply to the Leadership Development Program by the Dean and Associate Dean of Z. Smith Reynolds Library. She is interested in learning more about the organization’s culture, gaining insight into the working parts of higher education, and developing positive relationships with leaders on campus.


Anthony Hughes

Anthony Hughes

Assistant Director of Applications Development, Information Systems

Anthony Hughes is the Assistant Director of Applications Development in Information Systems.  Anthony is an accomplished information systems management professional, with more than 25 years of experience in enterprise business systems, with 10 of those years here at Wake Forest University. During his career, he has served in leadership positions for 17 years, providing vision for several diverse organizations. Through the Leadership Development Program, he is looking forward to expounding upon key leadership traits by collaborating with other LDP members. Anthony has a passion for software quality assurance and as such, has been a presenter at several international software testing conferences. Anthony holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering Technology from Southern Illinois University and Associate of Applied Science is both Business Administration and Logistics and Management.


Simeon Ilesanmi

Simeon Ilesanmi

Washington M. Wingate Professor, Department for the Study of Religions

Simeon Ilesanmi is Washington M. Wingate Professor in the Department for the Study of Religions. He joined the faculty in 1993. He received his Ph.D. from Southern Methodist University and his J.D. from Wake Forest University School of Law. His numerous publications include Religious Pluralism and the Nigerian State (1997), The Rule of Law and the Rule of God (2014), Journal and Law Review articles and book chapters on topics in Comparative Ethics, Just War Theory, Human Rights, and the intersections of law, religion, and ethics. He had been a visiting fellow at Princeton University’s Center for Human Values, Princeton’s Institute for Advanced Study, and the Aspen Institute. He serves on the editorial boards of several academic journals. His interest in the Leadership Development Program is to enable him achieve greater clarity on how to best extend his academic life and service beyond research and scholarship to institutional leadership responsibilities. 


Tiffany Judy

Tiffany Judy

Associate Professor, Department of Spanish and Italian

Tiffany Judy is an Associate Professor in the Department of Spanish and Italian. In her eight years at Wake Forest University, Tiffany has taught courses in Spanish and Linguistics for the Department of Spanish and Italian, the Linguistics Program, the Graduate Program in Interpreting and Translation Studies, and the First Year Seminar program. Tiffany holds a Ph.D. in Hispanic Linguistics University of Florida, master’s in Hispanic Linguistics from University of Iowa, and bachelor’s in Spanish from University of Northern Iowa. In addition to teaching and scholarship, Tiffany is increasingly active in the service component of her role on campus. To best serve in this capacity, she is motivated to learn more about leadership styles, the principles of leadership, conflict management and resolution, trust-building strategies, and the psychology of teamwork. Furthermore, she aims to identify her communication style and ways to increase effectiveness in this domain. Finally, with this information and developing skills, Tiffany will articulate her leadership style so that she may better serve her department and university throughout her tenure at WFU.


Jonathan McElderry

Jonathan McElderry

Assistant Dean of Students and Executive Director, Intercultural Center

Jonathan A. McElderry (he/him/his) has served as the Assistant Dean of Students and the Executive Director of the Intercultural Center at Wake Forest University since June 2016. Additionally, he serves as an affiliate faculty member in the university’s Department of Counseling. His professional activities include holding several leadership positions within the American College Personnel Association (ACPA); serving as a co-lead facilitator for the LeaderShape Institute; interning with the Social Justice Training Institute (SJTI) and a standout scholar-practitioner, who has authored/co-authored research articles, book chapters, and mainstream resources. Jonathan holds a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis from the University of Missouri, an M.Ed. in College Student Personnel from Ohio University, and a B.S. in Administration of Justice from George Mason University. When thinking about the Leadership Development Program, he believes now is a time more than ever for leaders to have the skills necessary to increase our self awareness, leadership style and learning best practices to serve our constituents.


Kim McGrath

Kim McGrath

Director of News & Communication, Communications & External Relations

Kim McGrath is the Director of News and Communications for Communications and External Relations. With more than 20 years of experience in public relations, marketing, brand management, project management and content creation, Kim has spent her career cultivating close and productive relationships as a communications professional. She joined Wake Forest in 1998. Kim connects Wake Forest’s experts to trends in personal and career development, employment, mentoring, economics and the arts. She also assists with campus communications through Wake Alert and helps lead crisis management planning. As a communications advisor, it is critical to develop relationships built on trust, and much of that rides on the ability to confidently share advice and guidance in ways that influence best outcomes. Kim is eager to refine her personal leadership style to better inspire and support others.Kim earned her B.A. from Loyola University in Maryland and a Certificate in Crisis Communications from the Public Relations Society of America.


Daniel Paredes

Daniel Paredes

Interim Director, University Counseling Center

Daniel M. Paredes, Ph.D., NCC, LCMHCS has been at Wake Forest University for five years and has been the University Counseling Center acting/interim director for 14 months. He earned his doctorate in counseling and counselor supervision from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. His leadership goals are to improve his skills in managing large teams.


Rais Rahman

Rais Rahman

Associate Professor, Department of History
Co-Director, Middle East and South Asia Studies Program

Rais Rahman is Associate Professor of History and Co-Director of the Middle East and South Asia Studies Program at Wake Forest University, which he joined in 2008. He is the author of Locale, Everyday Islam, and Modernity: Qasbah Towns and Muslim Life in Colonial India (Oxford University Press, 2015), co-editor of The Cambridge Companion to Sayyid Ahmad Khan (Cambridge University Press, 2019) and currently serves as the President of the South Asian Muslim Studies Association. Rais holds a Ph.D. in History from the University of Texas at Austin and an M.Phil and M.A. in Modern Indian History from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. In the Leadership Development Program, he hopes to advance his leadership potential and aptitude to successfully discharge his responsibilities as well as to better envision Wake Forest as a more diverse, global, and equitable space and community. 


Sarah Raynor

Sarah Raynor

Professor and Chair, Department of Mathematics and Statistics

Sarah Raynor is a Professor of Mathematics and the chair of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Wake Forest. Sarah’s research specialty is the use of theoretical mathematical tools to study wave equations in fluid mechanics and particle physics. She has been at Wake Forest since 2004, after completing her B.S. in Mathematics and Physics at Yale in 1998 and her Ph.D. in Mathematics at MIT in 2003. She worked from 2003 to 2004 at the Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences and the University of Toronto as a postdoctoral fellow.  Sarah is excited to join the Leadership Development Program in order to learn more about leadership and interpersonal communication, particularly to support her work in leading a department of nearly forty individuals, but also to further develop her leadership role in the college and the university.  


Jon Roethling

Jon Roethling

Director, Reynolda Gardens

Jon Roethling marked two years at Wake Forest University as Director of Reynolda Gardens this past December. He has spent more than 30 years working in various aspects of horticulture earning his B.S. in Horticultural Science from North Carolina State University in 2002. He has worked with some of the most diverse plant collections in the United States including the JC Raulston Arboretum and Juniper Level Botanical Garden. He worked with plant breeders both in the United States and internationally and recently spent the previous eight years growing the Botanical Gardens and Arboretum at High Point University. Jon seeks to hone his leadership abilities in the Leadership Development program. He has a grand vision for what Reynolda Gardens can become and in order to do so must communicate and execute that vision through a small staff. He especially hopes to learn tools to communicate and motivate a wide range of personality types.


Leigh Stanfield

Leigh Stanfield

Executive Director of Global Engagement and Administration, Center for Global Programs and Studies

Leigh Hatchett Stanfield is the Executive Director of Global Engagement and Administration in the Center for Global Programs and Studies. With 20 years experience in international education, Leigh leads the pioneering Workshop on Intercultural Skills Enhancement (WISE) Conference hosted annually in Winston-Salem. She oversees a portfolio of global programs which focus on enriching intercultural competency and global awareness within the university community. Initiatives include the Global Village Living and Learning Community, Global Laureates Academy (cohort-based learning opportunities for students, faculty, staff), Community-Based Global Learning programs, and special events. Leigh holds a B.A. in sociology from Wake Forest University. Having served multiple positions in global affairs since 1999, Leigh spearheaded a variety of special projects related to strategic planning, departmental administration, and program development. In the LDP, Leigh hopes to learn new leadership skills to apply to the changing workplace environment and build new collaborations.


Eric Stottlemyer

Eric Stottlemyer

Associate Teaching Professor, Department of English
Associate Dean, Wake Forest College

Eric Stottlemyer arrived at Wake Forest in the fall of 2012 and is an Associate Teaching Professor in the English Department and an Associate Dean of the College. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of Nevada with an emphasis on environmental writing and literature. Having transitioned into a College leadership role in 2018, he hopes to use the Leadership Development Program to identify areas of growth in his skills, knowledge, and abilities in order to become a more effective leader at the university.


William Turkett

William Turkett

Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Computer Science

William Turkett has been a faculty member in the Department of Computer Science for 16 years. He earned a B.S. in Computer Science in 1998 from the College of Charleston and a Ph.D. in Computer Science in 2004 from the University of South Carolina. Beginning as a visiting professor at Wake Forest University in 2004, William was hired as an assistant professor in 2005 and promoted to associate professor in 2011.  In July 2018, William took on the role of associate chair in the department, and starting July 2020, William has taken on the role of chair of the department. William led the Wake Forest EuroTour summer study abroad program for six years (2008-2013). Motivations for participating in the Leadership Development Program include learning how better delegation, communication, and time management skills can help support team success.


Karen Vargas

Karen Vargas

Dean of Admissions, Office of Undergraduate Admissions

Karen Vargas serves as Dean of Admissions in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at Wake Forest University. Previously, she served as Associate Dean of Admissions with a focus on diversity engagement. Karen has extensive experience in enrollment and has worked in higher education for more than 16 years, holding leadership positions in admissions at Providence College and Villanova University. She  obtained her bachelor’s from Haverford College and master’s from Rosemont College. In a rapidly changing environment, Karen is looking forward to meaningful and thoughtful conversations on a variety of topics, including strategic planning, campus partnerships, and well-being. She also recognizes the importance of innovation, collaboration and inclusive practices as necessary skills for an enrollment management thought leader. Karen oversees all aspects of student recruitment for the university and views the Leadership Development Program as providing the framework to move forward in this critical work.


Jose Venegas

José Luis Venegas

Director, Interdisciplinary Humanities Program
Associate Professor, Spanish and Interdisciplinary Humanities

José Luis Venegas is the Director of the Interdisciplinary Humanities Program and an Associate Professor of Spanish and Interdisciplinary Humanities. He holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has taught at Wake Forest since 2009 and is excited to participate in the Leadership Development Program to learn about best practices in organization development, program design, and mentorship of faculty and staff.