Lincoln News

Lincoln Lion - Fall 2018 - Class Notes


Edward S. Cooper, M.D. '46 received the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award. After receiving his doctor of medicine degree from Meharry Medical College, he was a cardiologist at Philadelphia General Hospital and later joined the faculty at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

His honors include: the Chairman’s Award for Distinguished Service from the American Academy of Neurology’s Research and Education Foundation, the Gold Heart Award from the American Heart Association, the Lincoln University Founders Award for Outstanding Alumni Achievement, and a citation from former Philadelphia Mayor Edward Rendell and Philadelphia City Council.

At Lincoln, Cooper established the E. Sawyer Cooper, Jr. Memorial Award for Pre-Med Excellence in memory of his son, Edward Sawyer Cooper, Jr.


Eddie Jefferies ’68*, a former New Pittsburgh Courier sports writer, recently sat down with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for an interview on his life and passion for sports. During his career, Jefferies covered everything in sports from high school tournaments to highly televised sporting events such as NBA games with Julius Erving and boxing matches featuring Muhammad Ali.


John H. West ’76 is celebrating 25 years as the pastor of Siloam Baptist Church in Norristown. A celebration event will be held October 27 at the DoubleTree hotel in King of Prussia.

He received a master of divinity degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in 1979 and pursued advanced studies at Colgate Rochester Divinity School in New York. He also attended the Lincoln College of Oxford University as a visiting fellow. He was licensed to preach in March 1977 and ordained a minister of the gospel in July 1979 at the Second Baptist Church of Moorestown, New Jersey.

After seminary, West served as the Lincoln University chaplain for 14 years. He also served as an assistant professor of religion and acting chair of the religion department. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including: Who’s Who in Religion, Who’s Who in American Education, Who’s Who in the East, Who’s Who in American Christian Leadership, and Outstanding Young Men in America.

Dr. Jerry L. Butler ’77 of Wethersfield, Connecticut, earned a doctorate in management with a specialization in organizational leadership from Northcentral University. Butler received an MBA in healthcare management and finance in 2009 from Regis University. With his doctorate, Butler plans to write articles, do more research, and contribute to the scientific community. He currently operates Premier Resources, a consumer products distribution firm in Africa, Europe, Canada, and the United States.


Denise “DJay” R. Jordan ’87 has been appointed executive director of the Springfield (Massachusetts) Housing Authority, which oversees public housing in Springfield. Jordan will now lead the second-largest housing authority in the state with 2,397 traditional public housing units located at 27 sites throughout the city, 240 Massachusetts rental vouchers and 2,893 Housing Choice vouchers. She has served as chief of staff for Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno since he took office in January 2008. She was the City of Springfield’s first Black chief of staff. She previously worked as a civil rights officer with the state Executive Office of Health and Human Services.

W. Keith Williams II ’87 has been reelected as district judge for the 32nd Magisterial District in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. Williams attended North Carolina Central University, where he earned a law degree in 1993. In March 1994, he opened his law office in the business district of downtown Yeadon, where he has been practicing law for over 20 years. He currently serves as a board member of the Yeadon Economic Development Association and supports the Yeadon Athletic Association.


Shane Gilmore ’91 of Frisco, Texas, was recently appointed by the Frisco City Council to the Charter Review Commission. He will work with a team of citizens to review, amend, and update the city’s charter. He has also been appointed to serve on the Parks and Recreation Board, where he will be responsible for the development and implementation of the parks and recreation system.

Prior to the Parks and Recreation Board, Gilmore served as the chairman of the Social Services and Housing Board, where he funded over $500,000 in social service grants and community development block grants. A special agent with the federal government for over 25 years, Gilmore conducts criminal investigations. He and his wife also own and operate a mental health counseling and life coaching practice.

Dr. Charles Sutton ’91 and Dr. Ernie Levister ’58 joined CNN’s W. Kamau Bell on campus to discuss the important role the Hosanna Church played in the Underground Railroad. The feature was part of CNN’s award-winning documentary "United Shades of America." Filmed on campus in October, the episode aired June 3.

Dr. Reggie Smith III ’92 has been appointed CEO and executive director of the United States Distance Learning Association. Prior to his appointment, Smith served as chair emeritus of the USDLA Board of Directors. In 2009 and 2010, Smith was elected as the association’s first African-American president and then chairman.

Smith, who is a recognized authority on media and telecommunications issues, has been honored for his distinguished service in supporting distance learning, including the USDLA Hall of Fame Award, Black Engineer of the Year Award for Community Service, Federal Government Distance Learning Association’s Hall of Fame Award, FGDLA Pillar Award, and the Virtual World Association’s Excellence Award.

Kwame Ulmer ’96 of Encino, California, founded MedTech Color and will host a launch breakfast in September 2018 in conjunction with The MedTech Conference in Philadelphia. It will encourage senior African American leaders and other underrepresented groups to build a collaborative tech community. He also met with board members of the Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed), the world’s largest medical device association.

Dr. Kendra V. Johnson ’96 made history when the Montclair, New Jersey, Board of Education appointed her superintendent. In May she became the first African-American to hold the position in the district’s 144-year history. Johnson previously served as the district’s assistant superintendent for equity, curriculum, and instruction and began her tenure as superintendent May 1. The district’s first permanent superintendent in three years, Johnson is overseeing the seven elementary schools, three middle schools and one high school that educate more than 6,600 students. Johnson holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Lincoln University, a master’s degree in educational administration and supervision from John Hopkins University, a law degree from the University of Baltimore, and a doctorate in urban education and leadership from Morgan State University.

Jonathan Alfred Brown, Ed.D. ’99 was recently appointed deputy superintendent of the Arlington Central School District in Dutchess County, New York. The Educational Policy Fellowship alum recently completed his 18th year in public education. Brown is currently completing his 11th year of higher education instructing at the Graduate School of Education at Fordham University.

He earned his bachelor of arts degree in Chinese at Lincoln University and a master of science degree in educational leadership at the College of New Rochelle. He received his Ed.D. in executive leadership at St. John Fisher College and graduated as a member of Kappa Delta Pi, an international honor society.


Monique A. Brown ’00, has authored her first book, “Clever Sarah.” The 28-page book is published by Friesen Press. It explores the life of a fifth-grade student who uses science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics to solve challenging problems alongside her classmates. Brown combines her 17 years’ experience with her passion for mystery, education, and entertainment to create a clever story.

Kevan Turman ’01 and Jack Drummond ’00 participated in a panel discussion at Lincoln University about the successes and challenges of African American men in the United States. Turman, founder of The Brothers Brunch, and Drummond, Philadelphia’s director of Black Male Engagement, shared their unique perspectives on how to overcome the challenges men of color face in their everyday lives.

Dr. Ikigu Thuku ’06 joined the McFarland Clinic in central Iowa as a physician in July. Thuku completed a physical medicine and rehabilitation residency at the Virginia Commonwealth University Hospital System in Richmond, where he also completed a pain management fellowship. He completed his medical degree and master’s in public health sciences at Pennsylvania State University in Hershey.

Janet Glenn ’06 was named the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce Corporate Advocate of the Year at the Chamber’s yearly gala at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in April 2018 for her role as founder of A Place Like Home II. Glenn, one of only three chamber members honored out of 700, got her master’s in human services degree at Lincoln University. She is the managing owner of the adult-daycare center in Wynnefield, which the chamber calls the first of its kind owned and operated by an African American in Pennsylvania.

Tatia Cooper ’07 has been appointed CEO of Home Care Associates, a nationally recognized welfare-to-workforce organization. Cooper began working at the worker-owned cooperative in 1994 as a job coach. The Center City Philadelphia-based organization employs more than 200 workers. Cooper earned a master’s degree in human services from Lincoln University and is a graduate of North Clayton High School in Atlanta.

Kevan L. Turman ’01, MSR '08 is the founder of The Brothers Brunch, an organization that focuses on developing personal and professional relationships over unique dining experiences. The Brothers Brunch has a partnership with The Mission of Grace in Haiti, where they serve the underserved population, the City of Philadelphia, and The Ronald McDonald House of Delaware.

Louie Ortiz-Fonseca M ’09 is championing queer Latinx experiences. Ortiz-Fonseca is one of the co-creators of The Gran Varones, a storytelling project on social media where he and his friend, Anthony Leon, compile stories, short posts, photos, and video clips about the lives of young gay, queer, and trans Latino and Afro-Latino men. What began as a way to amplify underrepresented voices within the LGBTQ community in his hometown of Philadelphia eventually expanded across the United States.

Pearline Sturdivant M’09, M’14 a public school early childhood educator and adult GED/HISET instructor, is pursuing an education doctorate at Temple University. She is the former co-president of Lincoln University’s Kappa Delta Pi (Zu Theta) educational honor society and current member of Temple University’s chapter of Kappa Delta Pi (Alpha Alpha Nu). She serves as president of Temple University’s Golden Key International Honor Society and serves as the CEO of a leadership development corporation she founded to assist struggling inner city youth.

Jalaal A. Hayes ’11, Ph.D., was recently named the Top Influential Chemist of the Year by the International Association of Top Professionals. He is a research chemist, STEM/STEAM educator, author, inventor, TEDx speaker, owner and founder of Elyte Universal Network, and a visiting assistant professor of physical chemistry at Delaware State University.

Ndubisi Mark Chikwem ’11 graduated from Pennsylvania State College of Medicine on May 20. Ndubisi will start his residency in neurology at Albany Medical Center in New York.

Rumeel Jessamy ’18 recently accepted a job offer from IBM. Rumeel graduated with a bachelor of arts in computer science.

Ted R. Green ’11 was elected mayor of East Orange, New Jersey. Green was sworn into office January 1 at the Cicely Tyson Community School of Performing and Fine Arts. A longtime East Orange resident, Green has been active in East Orange political and civic affairs for nearly three decades.

Gabrielle Nonnenberg-Reid ’12 was hired as an associate attorney with the Law Offices of Seymour Wasserstrum in Vineland, New Jersey.

Nicole Webb ’15 won an Outstanding News Special Emmy Award. The award was for her co-produced special, “Hooked: Delmarva’s Drug Crisis.” The special aired on WBOC 16, which broadcasts throughout the Delmarva Peninsula. The same special earned her the Chesapeake AP Broadcasters Association Award in Public Affairs. Webb is also an adjunct instructor at Lincoln.

Diosdado Sima ’15 started a clothing brand named Visionary Society. His designs have caught the attention of podcasters, radio personalities, writers, and designers. His line has been featured by Revolt TV and Hot 97. As the brand popularity continues to increase, Sima hopes it will gain sponsorship from athletes, skateboard teams, and musicians.

Jasmine Stone ’17 gave the end-of- school-year celebration speech for Project ELECT through the Delaware County Intermediate Unit. Project ELECT — Education Leading to Employment, is a 12-month program that provides comprehensive support services to school-age pregnant and parenting students throughout Delaware County.

Richard Ajala ’18, from Ibadan, Nigeria, has accepted a position as a software engineer at the biotech company Vertex Pharmaceuticals in Boston.

Taylor Brookins ’18, from Turnersville, New Jersey, will attend graduate school at Morgan State University for museum studies and historical preservation.

Jordyn Davis ’18, from Folcroft, has accepted a nurse extern position at Crozer-Chester Medical Center. She graduated magna cum laude with a degree in nursing.

Fiyinfoluwa Gbosibo ’18 from Lagos, Nigeria, will attend Bentley University for a master’s degree in business analytics.

Nnamdi Ihejirika ’18, from Oxford, will attend medical school at the University of Pittsburgh.

Gionelly Mills ’18 was selected to attend the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual Milstein Family Foundation Campus Allies Mission to Israel in May. Mills, a former Student Government Association president, joined other SGA presidents in hearing from national Israeli lawmakers, military officers, and other Israeli leaders.

Prisca Obidike ’18, of Newark, New Jersey, will attend the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine. Obidike majored in biology and was the Class of 2018 valedictorian.

Segunfunmi Oyedele ’18, from Lagos, Nigeria, has accepted a position at the biotech company Vertex Pharmaceuticals in Boston and will be attending Bentley University for a master’s of science degree in information technology and a master’s degree of business administration.

Teira Pendleton ’18, from Baltimore, Maryland, will be attending the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine to obtain a physician assistant master’s degree.

Siani Snaith ’18, from Kingston, Jamaica, has accepted a position as a medical scribe for Scribe America in the emergency room at Abington Hospital – Jefferson Health in Abington, Pennsylvania.

Yared Tadesse ’18, from Washington, District of Columbia, has completed a summer study course for the Actuarial Exam P. After taking the exam and earning actuarial credentials, Tadesse will join an insurance firm with the goal of starting a financial consulting business.

Madison Washington ’18, from Vallejo, California, has completed an internship at the Barnes Foundation and a fellowship at the Princeton University Arch Program