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For Immediate Release
Contact: Julie Schnidman, Foundation Manager
(312) 542-9015

AMAF Awards Five 2014 Valuing Diversity Scholarships

CHICAGO, IL – The American Marketing Association Foundation (AMAF) announces the following five award recipients of the 2014 Valuing Diversity Scholarship Program: PhD candidates Oliver Cruz-Milán, Charlene Dadzie, J.P. James, Tyrha M. Lindsey-Warren, and Jared Watson.  All award winners were recognized at the 2014 AMA Summer Educator’s Conference in San Francisco, CA.

AMAF, in conjunction with the AMA Academic Council, established the Valuing Diversity Scholarship program in 2003 to focus on creating scholarship funds for populations underrepresented in the marketing profession.  The number of African Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans pursuing doctoral degrees in marketing historically has been too low to reach a future goal of increased diversity in the marketing profession in both academic and corporate settings.  Through this valuing diversity scholarship program, AMAF seeks to close the gap and help broaden the opportunities for underrepresented populations, such as African Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans, to enroll in marketing doctoral programs. 

Oliver Cruz-Milán is a PhD candidate at the College of Business Administration of The University of Texas-Pan American. He holds a master’s degree in Tourism Marketing from Universidad La Salle-Cancun and a bachelor’s degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management from the University of Houston. Oliver’s main research focuses on consumer behavior in services, hospitality, and tourism-related settings.  Before pursuing his doctoral degree, Oliver gained industry experience in various hospitality firms in the United States and Mexico, and he was part of the faculty of the Sustainable Tourism and Hotel Administration program at Universidad del Caribe in Cancun.

Charlene Dadzie is a PhD candidate and Teaching Fellow in Department of Marketing & Logistics at University of North Texas (UNT).  Prior to joining the doctoral program at UNT, Charlene completed doctoral coursework in Management at the University of Pittsburgh and obtained a master’s degree in Industrial and Labor Relations (MILR) from Cornell University.  She holds a bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Georgia. Charlene has worked for Accenture as a Consulting Analyst and for General Electric as a Human Resources Leadership Program Intern.

J.P. James is a PhD candidate at Rutgers University Business School with a research focus on marketplace diversity, specifically multicultural/ethnic marketing.  J.P. is studying marketer acculturation—a marketing organization’s response to diversity.  Before J.P. began his doctoral studies, he worked for many years in the advertising industry at top mass market and multicultural agencies.  He has a master’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) from Northwestern University and a bachelor’s degree in marketing/advertising from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Cal Poly Pomona). 

Tyrha M. Lindsey-Warren is a PhD candidate in Marketing at Rutgers Business School.  Her research streams are rooted in storytelling, also known as narrative transportation; health edu-tainment and its effects on Millennials' attitudes and behaviors; emotional contagion (Word-of-Mouth) for Millennials and movies; and embodied cognition and health.  Tyrha has worked in communications and marketing for Quincy Jones, David Salzman Entertainment, United States Tennis Association, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and UniWorld Group.  She received her bachelor’s degree in Radio/TV/Film from Northwestern University and has a Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing from the Peter F. Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate University.   Currently, Tyrha serves as President for the PhD Project's Marketing Doctoral Students Association.

Jared Watson is a PhD candidate at the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland.  After graduating from Michael G. Foster School of Business at the University of Washington, Jared worked as a sales manager for Frito-Lay.  His experiences in industry have heavily influenced his research interests as he currently focuses on incentives and motivations.  A secondary stream of research he is developing looks at decision-making in an online context, and how the wealth of information available online might change decisions relative to brick-and-mortar contexts.  Across both streams of research, Jared consistently seeks to understand the practical implications of theory, and how managers can use his findings to improve their operations.

The 2015 Valuing Diversity Scholarship winners will be announced in August at the PhD Project Dinner at the Marketing Doctoral Students Association Annual Conference, as well as recognized at the 2015 AMA Summer Educators' Conference in Chicago, IL.