The GWSB Proud Podcast




GWSB Proud podcast series logo

In the spirit of sharing the expertise of our distinguished alumni and other thought leaders, we've created the GWSB Proud podcast series.

Liesl Riddle

Hosted by Liesl Riddle, associate professor of international business and international affairs at the GW School of Business.

Special thanks to Michael Ferrier, composer and singer of the GWSB Proud podcast series theme song.




Our Most Recent Episode
Advocating for Healthcare Change with Leslie Howard, Esq.


Leslie Howard’s (BBA ‘89) entrepreneurial journey demonstrates how surprise life challenges can create a “light bulb moment” that reveals a new innovative path for an entrepreneur. It takes a very special kind of entrepreneur like Leslie, though, to turn that burning lightbulb into a thriving organization that makes an impact. In this episode, Leslie shares her unique lightbulb moment, which catalyzed the founding of the Cohen Howard law practice. Cohen Howard, LLP represents healthcare providers in the administrative appeal process on medical claims that are denied or under-reimbursed by commercial insurance carriers. Leslie's lightbulb moment put her on a path to advocate for change in our healthcare system, championing the needs of physicians and patients alike.

Leslie Howard, Esq.

Leslie Howard, Esq., is the founder and managing partner of Cohen Howard, a law firm dedicated solely to representing out-of-network providers in order to increase their reimbursements from commercial insurance companies and third-party administrators.





Previous Episodes
Explore the Archive


Episode 21 - Creating a Food & Sports Lifestyle Brand

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, 80% of Americans tailgated at sporting events and spent $35 billion a year on food and drink alone. During the pandemic, millions of Americans found themselves “homegating” during sporting events. An avid sports fan from birth, GWSB Executive MBA alumna Daina Falk set out to create a lifestyle brand like Martha Stewart Living — but for the sport fan lifestyle. She’s built a fun and exciting brand, Hungry Fan, providing food and beverage products, recipes and party ideas, while building an online community of sport fans and foodies alike. In this episode, we learn from Daina about the challenges of being a female entrepreneur in a male-dominated industry, lessons on entrepreneurial resiliency when the unexpected happens, and how MBA skills can contribute to entrepreneurial success.

Read a transcript of this episode with Daina Falk

Daina Falk

Daina Falk is a bestselling cookbook author and nationally known game day expert. With an adoration for food and a love for tailgating and homegating, she launched the lifestyle brand Hungry Fan. She also produces and hosts digital content and TV shows, including network segments at Super Bowls and the Olympic Games as well as her own show on CBS Sports, Toughest Tailgate.

Episode 20 - How Our School Champions Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

In this episode, we learn from Dr. Leo Moersen, our chief diversity officer and an associate professor of accountancy and business law, about the different ways the GWSB community promotes diversity, equity and inclusion. We learn what a chief diversity officer does, and we discuss the ways that students, faculty, staff and alumni can get involved in these important efforts.

Read a transcript of this episode with Leo Moersen

Leo Moersen

Leo Moersen is an attorney and CPA, and serves as an associate professor of accountancy and business law at the George Washington University School of Business. He is also the chief diversity officer on the Dean's Diversity Council.

Episode 19 - Entrepreneurship, Creativity & Resilience in Life Abroad
Linda Mueller

Linda Mueller (BBA '91) is a certified life coach and mentor who empowers expat partners/accompanying spouses to create a life they love through the ups and downs of the expat/repat cycle. Linda uses proven strategies and tools to help expat partners find purpose, connection and a renewed sense of self that is independent of location.

Episode 18 - How We Prepare Students for Successful Careers in HR
D. Christopher Kayes

Dr. Christopher Kayes is a professor of management at the GW School of Business. He served three terms as chair of the Department of Management and as interim dean of the School of Business. He also serves as a senior fellow at the Center for Excellence in Public Leadership at GW.

Episode 17 - How Adam Richelieu Applies Business Analytics at the NFLPA

Named among Forbes magazine’s “30 Under 30” in 2019, Adam Richelieu is a graduate of the sport management track of GWSB’s Master of Tourism Administration program. In this episode, he discusses some of the classes that had an impact on his career and how they still help him with his current role today as the salary cap and contract manager at the NFL Players Association (NFLPA). He also shares what it was like to attend the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro as a GWSB student, and we hear his perspective on the great sports teams of the Washington, D.C. area.

Read a transcript of this episode with Adam Richelieu

Adam Richelieu

Adam Richelieu is the salary cap and contract manager at the NFL Players Association. In this role, he is responsible for reviewing NFL player contracts, analyzing the salary cap, and assisting with contract negotiations. Adam is also a professor at GW, where he teaches graduate-level classes in Sport Finance & Capology.

Episode 16 - Our IFC-Milken Institute Graduate Certificate in Capital Markets

The GW School of Business partners with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Milken Institute to offer a graduate certificate in capital markets to young professionals in the field of finance from all around the world. In this episode, the director of this prestigious certificate program, Dr. Phillipe Delquié, discusses how the certificate combines academic content with real-world experiences.

Read a transcript of this episode with Phillipe Delquié

Phillipe Delquié

Dr. Phillipe Delquié’s research and teaching are in decision analysis, a discipline to help individuals and organizations make decisions in situations involving risk, uncertainty, and incomplete information, and design resilient strategies to balance reward and risk. A hallmark of Delquié’s work is the blend of behavioral studies and analytical models to study the intuitive and rational basis of decision making.

Episode 15 - Exploring the GW New Venture Competition with Anthony Shop

In this episode, we chat with Anthony Shop, the co-founder and chief strategy officer of Social Driver, a digital services firm that helps companies and nonprofits establish winning strategies on social media and websites and in content and advertising. Anthony is also chairman of the National Digital Roundtable, the premier convener of digital innovators, leaders and policy shapers. Anthony has been recognized as an “OUTstanding LGBT Role Model” by the Financial Times and was featured in the “40 Under 40” list by the Washington Business Journal. A former newspaper reporter, Anthony was the first new media professional elected to the prestigious National Press Club’s Board of Governors. Prior to founding Social Driver, he served as press secretary for a top U.S. congressional race and as a journalist. He earned his MBA from the George Washington University School of Business, where he has taught as an adjunct lecturer.

Read a transcript of this episode with Anthony Shop

Anthony Shop

Anthony Shop is the co-founder and chief strategy officer of Social Driver, a firm that helps companies and nonprofits establish winning digital strategies. He is also chairman of the National Digital Roundtable.

Episode 14 - Women In Entrepreneurship, Featuring LaJuanna Russell

The GW School of Business (GWSB) is proud of the many entrepreneurs that trace their roots back to our school. LaJuanna Russell (MBA '98) is an outstanding example of the entrepreneurial talent and vision of our alumni. LuJuanna applied knowledge gleaned in our MBA program and built an award-winning, multimillion-dollar business, Business Management Associates. Today, she plays an important role at GWSB as a member of the school’s board of advisors. She is an active supporter of GW’s New Venture Competition, often serving as a mentor to our student competitors. Her story is one of determination, creativity and inspired leadership. Listen to this episode to learn how she nurtured her entrepreneurial idea and grew it into the thriving venture that it is today — and learn why GWSB is still a very special place for her.

Read a transcript of this episode with LaJuanna Russell

LaJuanna Russell

A visionary who started her award-winning, multimillion-dollar business with a personal investment of $500, Ms. LaJuanna Russell has more than 20 years of experience in all aspects of business operations and government contracting. She is particularly practiced in the areas of human resource management and process improvement.

Episode 13 - Going Global with Our Consulting Abroad Program

In this episode, we chat with Sarah LaRosa, our assistant director for Global & Experiential Education, and three Class of 2022 Global MBA students. Each spring, first-year Global MBA students at the GW School of Business conclude their academic year in a global, experiential and integrative experience called the Consulting Abroad Program (CAP). The CAP is a course that takes students from our Washington, D.C. campus to another country to work on pro bono client projects. In this episode, we learn more about the CAP experience and how it was affected by the global pandemic. Global MBA students who experienced CAP during the pandemic — working with clients in Ghana, Sweden, and Turkey — share about their experience and discuss how the experience contributed to their career development.

Read a transcript of this episode with Sarah LaRosa and our MBA candidates

Sarah LaRosa

Sarah LaRosa is the assistant director of Global and Experiential Education (G&EE) at the George Washington University School of Business. In this role, Sarah serves as the programmatic lead for project-based learning initiatives as well as the Consulting Abroad Program and the Business & Society Series.

GWSB Consulting Abroad Program MBA students

Mike Tadesse is a Global MBA candidate at GW. He is also pursuing graduate certificates in the management of technology and innovation as well as digital marketing and analytics.

Allison Van Fechtmann is a Global MBA candidate at GW. She is also pursuing graduate certificates in strategic management and global management.

Vincent Villeneuve is a Global STEM MBA candidate at GW. He is also pursuing graduate certificates in strategic management and quantitative business foundations.

Episode 12 - Our Redesigned Career Center and Its Impact on Students

GWSB is fortunate to have the F. David Fowler Career Center embedded within the School of Business, serving both our undergraduate and graduate students. The career center’s mission is to support students and alumni in developing lifelong career management skills and building partnerships among students, alumni, employers and faculty, resulting in rewarding and fulfilling careers.

In this episode, F. David Fowler Career Center Executive Director Mark Strassman explains why the career center has undergone an important physical and organizational redesign and how career services are making a difference in our students’ lives at GWSB.

Read a transcript of this episode with Mark Strassman

photo - Mark Strassman

Mark Strassman is the Endowed Blaser Family Executive Director of the F. David Fowler Career Center (FDFCC) at the George Washington University School of Business (GWSB).

Episode 11 - Announcing Our New MBA in Security Technology Transition

In 2020, the GW School of Business was named a Center of Excellence by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). We subsequently launched an innovative, signature MBA program: the MBA in Security Technology Transition. Students in this program are drawn from not only the DHS but also the private sector and other federal agencies.

In this episode, the faculty director for the program, Dr. Richard Donnelly, and our DHS partner from the Office of University Partnerships at the DHS, Greg Simmons, discuss how the program is similar to and different from our other MBA programs, how the curriculum was crafted to inspire students to rethink how security technology is transitioned into and out of their organizations, and how an MBA can enhance the careers of those interested in security technology across sectors.

Read a transcript of this episode with Richard Donnelly and Greg Simmons

Richard Donnelly
Greg Simmons

Professor Richard Donnelly is the founding chair of the Department of Information Systems and Technology Management at the GW School of Business.

Greg Simmons is the program manager for Workforce Development and Minority Serving Institutions at the Department of Homeland Security Office of University Programs. Before entering federal service, Mr. Simmons was a test and evaluation manager with the Department of the Navy Sea System Command.

Episode 10 - Exploring Our Revised Master of Accountancy Program

In this episode, we explore how the Master of Accountancy program at the GW School of Business has been revised in response to increasing technology trends in the field, including adding a new STEM track for the degree. We also discuss what types of students pursue this degree, the types of organizations and career fields they tend to lead after graduation, and the important role of the kind of hands-on learning and mentorship that students benefit from in GWSB’s program. We are joined by Professor Scott Lancaster, the faculty director for the Master of Accountancy program, and Andrew Lewis, partner at KPMG, member of the GWSB Dean’s Corporate Council, and GW alumnus.

Read a transcript of this episode with Scott Lancaster and Andrew Lewis

Scott Lancaster
Andrew Lewis

Scott Lancaster is the director of the Master of Accountancy program and a teaching professor of accountancy at the GW School of Business (GWSB). He is an accomplished and well-rounded financial executive with leadership experience in accounting, finance and information systems.

Andrew Lewis is the partner-in-charge of KPMG’s Federal audit practice, and is based in the Washington, D.C. office. Mr. Lewis has 21 years of experience focused on performing financial statement audits as well as accounting and advisory services for numerous Federal agencies.

Episode 9 - The Evolution of Business Analytics & Our Market Response

In this episode, we discuss the fast-changing world of business analytics as well as the difference between a traditional data science role in an organization and one of a business analyst. We learn about how the newly revised MS in Business Analytics program at the GW School of Business has been shaped to respond to innovations in the field and the new demands of industry. The difference between our two related graduate certificates, Analytics for Managers and Business Analytics, also is explained.

Joining us in the studio are Dr. Murat Tarimcilar, professor and faculty director of the Department of Decision Sciences; Brian Murrow, adjunct professor and managing partner at Cherry Bekaert; and Alfred Hull, GWSB alumnus and senior data scientist at the Department of the Army.

Read a transcript of this episode with Murat Tarimcilar, Brian Murrow and Alfred Hull

Murat Tarimcilar
Brian Murrow
Alfred Hall

Dr. Murat Tarimcilar is a professor and the chair of the Department of Decision Sciences at the GW School of Business. He is also the director of the Master of Science in Business Analytics (MSBA) program.

Brian Murrow is an adjunct professor at GWSB and managing partner at Cherry Bekaert. He is also an advisor to Fortune 500 companies, venture-stage organizations, and government agencies on digital transformation.

Alfred Hall is a senior data scientist at the Department of the Army. He is also a Springboard certified data scientist and a certified defense financial manager.

Episode 8 - GWSB Consulting Community of Practice Alumni Mentors

In this episode, we chat with three alumni mentors from our Consulting Community of Practice (CoP), which equips students with the tools, preparation and network connections needed for industry success by providing industry-specific, career-related experience and mentoring. The Consulting CoP is a rigorous two-year experiential program in which students achieve interview and career readiness through immersive experiences. The CoP offers students:

  • Industry-specific skills training led by consultants from top firms, including Deloitte, BCG, EY, IBM, and others
  • One-on-one mentorship in case interviewing, job search strategies, personal branding, and networking for consulting jobs
  • Experiential learning on pro bono consulting projects with for-profit and nonprofit clients

The CoP model is flexible and recognizes that each student learns differently. With three levels of career preparedness to navigate (Beginner, Accelerated and Advanced), CoP students can customize their learning paths, develop at their own pace, and design their own outcomes.

Read a transcript of this episode with our Consulting Community of Practice mentors

Serena Kapur
Craig Rowlings

Serena Kapur graduated from GWSB with a BBA with a concentration in Finance and a minor in Computer Science. She recently completed her first year at Accenture in commercial consulting.

Craig Rowlings graduated from GWSB with an MBA. He is currently a senior manager Riveron, specializing in financial advisory services.

Milinda Balthrop is the associate program director of the Community of Practice (CoP) at the F. David Fowler Career Center and has served in the role of adjunct lecturer at GWSB.

Episode 7 - Megan Lawrence, Senior Accessibility Technical Evangelist, Microsoft

Does your organization have an “accessibility evangelist?” What is this role, and what impact does it have in organizations? Should business schools like GWSB participate in accessibility evangelizing — and if so, how? In this episode, we gain answers from Microsoft’s accessibility evangelist, Dr. Megan Lawrence.

The term “accessibility evangelist” is a fitting description for the important role Dr. Lawrence plays within her own organization and across many industries. Dr. Lawrence is a futurist, and through her work, she helps Microsoft and other organizations better include those with disabilities in the workplace and better support those struggling with mental illness in their organizations.

GWSB is proud to partner with our Dean’s Corporate Council, a board that consists of representatives from organizations that support the School of Business in various ways. Microsoft is an example of one of these important GWSB partners.

Read a transcript of this episode with Megan Lawrence

Dr. Megan Lawrence

Megan Lawrence, Ph.D. is the Senior Accessibility Technical Evangelist at Microsoft with 15 years of experience working with the disability community. Dr. Lawrence builds trusted relationships with customers, NGOs and assistive technology partners to further Microsoft’s mission of empowering every person and organization to achieve more through the lens of inclusion.

Episode 6 - Michael Ferrier, Posse Foundation Scholar and 2020 GW Graduate

Voted best on-campus musician by GW's student-run campus news organization, Michael Ferrier composed the theme song for the GWSB Proud podcast series. In this episode, he talks about his musical background — starting with his family — and how it has shaped his future. Michael also shares information about GW’s recording studio at the Mount Vernon campus, the various music scenes on and around campus, and his involvement with the Posse Foundation. Connect with Michael on Instagram at plantain_papi_.
Michael Ferrier

Michael Ferrier graduated from the George Washington University in 2020 with a BA in Organizational Sciences. He is also a Posse Foundation scholar.

Episode 5 - Rachel Goldstein, Senior Manager for Global Packaging Sustainability, Mars, Inc.

In this episode, Rachel Goldstein, senior manager for Global Packaging Sustainability at Mars, Inc., walks us through her decision to choose GWSB for her graduate studies. She also discusses her professional life after GW, working in both the public and private sectors, and leading in the field of global sustainability. We also learn about Rachel’s fondest memory from her time at GWSB: creating and participating in the regional Net Impact student organization conference, which convened business school students from throughout the DC-Maryland-Virginia area.
Rachel Goldstein

Rachel Goldstein is the global sustainability senior manager for Packaging and External Reporting at Mars, Incorporated. She leads an internal sustainable packaging working group and Mars’ external engagement in key partnerships such the New Plastics Economy, the Sustainable Packaging Coalition and the Sustainability Consortium.

Episode 4 - John Samuel, Chief Innovation Architect, LCI Tech, and Nicole Samuel, Director, Gartner, Inc.

John Samuel, chief innovation architect at LCI Tech, and Nicole Samuel, director at Gartner, Inc., met in a macroeconomics class while pursuing a Global MBA degree at the GW School of Business. They married after graduation and now live in North Carolina with their two children. In this episode, we learn about their careers before GWSB and why they both chose the school's MBA program. John and Nicole also share how they met and how they each overcame specific obstacles to succeed personally and professionally.
John Samuel
Nicole Samuel

John G. Samuel is an award-winning business development leader, with over thirteen years of experience transforming organizations around the world. He is currently the chief innovation architect at LCI Tech, one of the largest employers of Americans who are blind.

Nicole Samuel is a strategy consultant in the technology industry with fifteen years of experience in the private, non-profit, and public sectors. Nicole graduated from the GW GMBA program in May 2014, and is an Associate Director in the Consulting unit at Gartner, Inc.

Episode 3 - Gaurav Sharma, New Zealand Doctor and Politician

A medical doctor from New Zealand, Gaurav Sharma pursued an MBA at GWSB to combine his interest in healthcare, business, and politics. In this episode, Dr. Sharma stops by the GWSB podcast studio on a visit back to campus to share highlights from his time at the School of Business and discuss how his MBA experience continues to shape his political career in New Zealand, where he is currently a candidate for parliament.
Guarav Sharma

Gaurav Sharma is a New Zealand doctor and politician. He has a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery degree from the University of Auckland and a Master of Business Administration from George Washington University. He was a candidate for Member of Parliament in the House of Representatives for the Labour Party in 2017 from Hamilton West.

Episode 2 - Andrew Seal, Strategic Account Manager, GE Renewable Energy

Deeply affected by the terror attacks of September 11, 2001, Andrew Seal (MBA '12), strategic account manager at GE Renewables, enlisted in the Marine Corps. During his three military deployments abroad, he decided to dedicate the rest of his professional career to seeking renewable energy solutions. In this episode, he shares how the time he spent at GWSB and its faculty, courses, and student organizations have influenced his career.
Andrew Seal

Andrew Seal is a commercial leader in General Electric’s Renewable Energy business, and has closed over $3B of orders and commitments with some of the largest domestic and international businesses in the industry. He is the principal owner of all technical, financial, and commercial aspects of sales strategy development and project risk management, successfully enabling 3,000MW+ of Renewable Energy projects while managing a $10.9B+ pipeline.

Episode 1 - Anuj Mehrotra, Dean, The GW School of Business
Anuj Mehrotra

Anuj Mehrotra, Ph.D., is the dean of the George Washington University School of Business (GWSB). Under Dean Mehrotra’s leadership, GWSB has reimagined graduate business education through its modular and flexible offerings, which allow the school to proactively respond to the shifting demands of business education.