By Jordan Beach

Reinhardt University’s Board of Trustees gained fresh perspective and wisdom as four new members joined the ranks during the 2018-19 school year.

Alicia Ivey and Heather Trotter, who began in October 2018, and Patience Peterson and Bryan McAllister, who were approved in January 2019, hope to contribute to ongoing growth and betterment of the University with their various backgrounds and experiences.

  • Save
Top row, left to right: Heather Trotter, Bryan McAllister
Bottom row, left to right: Alicia Ivey, Patience Peterson

Alicia Ivey once found a home at Reinhardt, graduating in 2004. She is now president and CEO of Goldbergs Concessions Corporation, as well as president of Phoenix Drilling Corp., and will share her wisdom as keynote speaker for the 2019 Commencement Ceremony.

“I always cherish the values I learned from my beloved Reinhardt,” said Ivey. “This institution taught me to take the road traveled by few which leads to the road of boundless possibilities and success.”

Heather Trotter, vice president of national food service for The Coca-Cola Company, was also impressed with Reinhardt, particularly the widespread opportunities available to students—from diverse courses to a place to call home.

“I have been happy to see the plans which are in progress to add programs and stay relevant in today’s rapidly changing world,” said Trotter. “And equally important is that Reinhardt feels like a family, it seems like a great place to call your college home.”

Trotter hopes her business experience, strategic partnerships and her understanding of micro- and macro-economic trends “help drive forward decisions which will positively impact the University for years to come.”

Patience Peterson is the manager for product management at LexisNexis, which provides risk solutions for companies and government agencies. In addition to this position, Peterson volunteers with The Family Heritage Foundation by assisting the children’s program that teaches and supports refugees and at-risk children in Clarkston, Ga.

Peterson’s favorite aspect of Reinhardt is its “unwavering drive to grow as a University.”

“I am most looking forward to contributing to the growth and success of each student that attends Reinhardt University,” said Peterson.

Peterson’s involvement with Reinhardt has a deep background as her grandfather, W. W. Fincher of Chatsworth, Ga. served as an active trustee from 1945 to 1954, and her father, Hugh Peterson, served from 1980 to 2013 and has continued his service as Trustee Emeritus since 2013.  

Familiar with past Reinhardt contributors whose efforts continue to allow students to thrive, Bryan McAllister met with Board Chair, Ken White, who believes McAllister will represent the Dalton area well. The two have known each other since the early 1980s and both are Certified Public Accountants.

McAllister, vice president of finance for Brown Industries, Inc., reflected on his long history with Reinhardt contributors James and Sis Brown, for whom Brown Athletic Center is named. James Brown served on the Board of Trustees from 1974 to 2004. And, their daughter, Lynn Whitworth, and family have remained strong supporters, including with their most recent support to launch Reinhardt’s very successful wrestling program in 2016.

“I knew both (James and Sis Brown) very well, but I got to work with (Sis Brown) directly for about 10 years; she was a delightful person,” McAllister said. “She was down here every day, she was a go-getter. I was very fortunate to be able to work with her.”

McAllister has served many nonprofit boards and is excited for the challenge of serving in an academic environment, a new experience for him.

“I’m looking forward to working with the people I’ve met already,” McAllister said of his visit to the campus. “They work together really well.”

Reinhardt’s Board of Trustees is charged with the responsibility of determining the general, education and financial policies of the University, including appointment of the President, approving and authorizing all degrees, accepting all gifts and more. The Chair of the Board of Trustees is C. Kenneth White ’61.

“These new members of our Board of Trustees have a breadth of experience that will be extremely valuable as we seek to support the mission and vision of Reinhardt,” said Board Chair Ken White. “As a proud alumnus and longtime Board member myself, I am looking forward to working with Alicia, Heather, Patience and Bryan as together we move Reinhardt forward to achieve our mission.”