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05.19.2014

Ertharin Cousin (JD '82) named to 2014 TIME 100 Most Influential People

In a quote with The Telegraph, Ertharin Cousin says her mission statement is “to end hunger in my lifetime. We have the tools, the technology, the commitment at a global level from donor countries.” She has used this mission statement to guide her path through life.

Cousin is the 12th executive director of the U.N. World Food Programme. As the world’s largest humanitarian organization, it staffs approximately 13,500 people serving more than 90 million beneficiaries in 80 countries. The vision of WFP is “a world in which every man, woman, and child has access at all times to the food needed for an active and healthy life. Without food, there can be no sustainable peace, no democracy and no development.”

Cousin received her bachelor’s degree from University of Illinois at Chicago and her law degree from the University of Georgia. In particular, she studied international law under former U.S. Secretary of State Dean Rusk. After earning her law degree, Cousin worked in Illinois as Assistant Attorney General and then worked in several roles for the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton Administration.

Her passion for feeding the world led to work with several important organizations. As the lead government communications and community affairs chair for Albertsons Foods and Jewell Foods, she also served as president of the company’s corporate foundation, managing the organization’s philanthropic activities. She then served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Feeding America (formerly America’s Second Harvest). In this position, she led the organization’s response to Hurricane Katrina and helped raise annual revenue from $20 million to $56 million.

Noticing Cousin’s dedication to combating global hunger, President Obama nominated and the U.S. Senate confirmed her as the US Ambassador to the UN Agencies for Food & Agriculture and head of the US Mission to the UN Agencies in Rome in 2009. She became a fierce advocate for programs that would promote country-led sustainable agriculture and a transition from relief to development.

The combination of these life experiences and wealth of knowledge led to Cousin’s appointment as executive director of the WFP. She was recently acknowledged as one of the 2014 TIME 100 Most Influential People and #49 in Forbes Magazine’s List of the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women. She is a published author and accomplished speaker on food insecurity and chronic malnutrition.

Thank you for being an incredible alumna, Ertharin! Your work fighting global hunger is an inspiration to us all, and we look forward to hearing even more about your accomplishments.

Click here to donate to the United Nations World Food Programme.

Photo credit to Laura Hynd

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Recent Entries


02.25.2015

Alumna Spotlight: Sara Alread (BFA ’09)

Sara Alread (BFA '09) of Saint Simons Island, Georgia successfully launched her business, Little River Designs, in April 2013. The web-based business features rustic hand-crafted, wooden designs for the Southern home. Litter River Designs is a family business in every sense of the word. Sara's father is a carpenter, while her mother and sister serve as constant inspirations for new designs. The idea to create Little River Designs came in the form of a new family member. 

Sara shares how Litter River Designs got its name, "On November 30, 2011, my nephew, River, was born. He became our inspiration and official mascot. We were already making signs, planning weddings and building furniture for ourselves when friends became interested in what we were creating. Soon after River was born, Little River Designs began."

Little River Designs centers around a timeless family tradition: tracking grandchildrens' growth-spurts on the wall at grandma's house. Little River Designs' most popular item is the wooden Grow Chart Rulers.

      

Grow Chart Rulers by Litter River Designs

Today, Little River Designs continues to develop its online business and clientele. A recent expansion includes a line of wedding signs and the personalization of all Litter River Design products. As Sara and her team grow the Little River Designs line, they have gained the attention of a few big crafting and design websites. The business has been featured on SwissMiss, Sweet Peach, 100 Layer Cake, Rustic Wedding Chic, Golden Isles Magazine, and in the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

To learn more about Sara and Little River Designs, check out the website and Facebook page.

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02.23.2015

Sisters Rethink “Something Borrowed”

Sisters Ashley Steele (ABJ ’06), of Charlottesville, Virginia., and Cali Brutz (AB ’08), of Athens, Georgia., own and operate two businesses that are modernizing the wedding industry. Steele and Brutz began working together in 2008 at the ages of 24 and 22, respectively. At the time, Steele was planning her own wedding and Brutz was a photographer. During the wedding planning process, the pair identified a number of issues that arise for the soon-to-be brides. Looking to solve those issues sparked several entrepreneurial projects.

The duo's latest venture, Borrowing Magnolia, uses a concept similar to that of Rent the Runway and Warby Parker in that brides will be able to rent wedding dresses for their big day directly from Borrowing Magnolia. The dresses available for rental will be provided by former brides who are interested in earning extra cash by lending their gown to another individual. Borrowing Magnolia ensures that the dresses are in good quality by limiting each dress to three rentals annually and five total. Sizes range from 0 to 24 and alterations are available as long as the changes are reversible

Borrowing Magnolia lives to serve the bride. The sisters ensure the brides-to-be that, "Borrowing Magnolia is committed to helping you find your dream gown, the way the modern bride does the dress. We make it easy for you to buy or borrow a designer gorgeous gown at a fraction of the retail cost, while still having a white-glove personalized boutique experience from start-to-finish. Look fabulous in your dream dress, save some cash, go green, and focus on what really matters on your wedding day. That’s what we’re all about."

The sisters have obviously been bitten by the entrepreneurial bug and show no signs of stopping. This year, Borrowing Magnolia is expected to have over 800 dresses in their collection by the end of the year; the business was featured in the New York Times’ Style Section; and reality show producers are in talks of covering their business endeavors.

Congratulation to Ashley and Cali on their stellar sucess and best wishes as they continue to help women live their dream weddings. 

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02.20.2015

Amazing Student: Sarah Huber '15

From the moment she stepped foot on the campus, Sarah Huber could tell that UGA was the perfect place for her. Nearly four years later, the future dentist calls the journey an “extraordinary experience.”

Throughout my four years at UGA, I have experienced significant development in my character and drastic change in my approach to life. I entered college with an outlook that was enthusiastic, yet full of uncertainty in my surroundings and in my hopes for the future. Today, my recent acceptance to dental school and each of the incredible relationships I have formed at UGA serve as reminders of the extraordinary experience that this university has provided me over these past four years.

Read more about Sarah's incredible four years at UGA.

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