Alumni of Distinction

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Donna Moss '71

Dr. Donna Jeanne Moss received her B.A. (History, 1969) and M.S. (Social Science Education, 1971) from SUNY Oneonta and her Ph.D. in Educational Administration from Syracuse University (1979).

While working on her Ph.D., Donna was elected as an officer of the Graduate Student Organization and served on the University Senate and other university organizations.  She was selected as the Outstanding Graduate School Student the year she graduated.  As an administrative intern she was the Syracuse City School District Title IX Coordinator and her leadership resulted in the district being one of the first in NYS to comply with Title IX in all areas.

Dr. Moss has been a building administrator at all levels K-12.  She was the first female principal to serve in the Morris and South Seneca Central School Districts.  She was Assistant Superintendent/Director for Curriculum in Amsterdam & Highland Schools and Supervisor for Research & Development at Ulster BOCES.  She has been an Interim Assistant Superintendent in districts and serves as a Consultant in NYS and NJ.  

Her vision has resulted in innovative programs for students and her integrity, honesty, and emphasis on equity and fairness has impacted everyone in these districts.  For example, she brought professional ballet, art, and symphony presentations to students; implemented on-line secondary courses; secured grant monies for a solar energy project and an electric car project; and implemented after school programs for ESL students and families.  At Ulster BOCES she wrote/coor-dinated 10 million dollars in grants that impacted all populations

Dr. Moss has conducted staff training and community presentations over her career on topics including curriculum development, data analysis, Common Core Standards, learning styles, change, and effective teaching.  She has presented in NYS and at national ASCD conferences, and has numerous publications.  An adjunct instructor at SUNY Oswego, SUNY New Paltz, and SUNY Cortland, she taught undergraduates and graduates.  A champion of equity during her career, she has mentored countless teachers and administrators.

Dr. Moss has been recognized and honored statewide and nationally.  For example, she was elected President of NYSASCD and NYS Congress of School Administrator Organizations and served on ASCD Board of Directors and various committees.  One of the first members of ASCD’s African American Critical Issues Network, she was honored for her leadership by that group in 2001.  She was a founder and President of Mid-Hudson Women in Educational Leadership and served on the Board and as Vice Chair for Affiliate Support for NYS Association for Women in Administration.  She was a member of the NYS Education Commissioner’s Ad Hoc Advisory Committee on Early Childhood Education and NYS Education Department’s Staff and Curriculum Network.

Dr. Moss is a community leader.  She is on the Kingston Hospital Board of Directors, chairs the Broadway Hospital Campus Quality Assurance Committee, and is a member of SUNY Ulster’s VATEA Council.  She has served on many community Boards, including Family of Woodstock, Ulster County AIDS Task Force, Ulster County School-to-Work, and Ulster Youthbuild.  She is a member of the Ulster County Chamber of Commerce, Arts Society of Kingston, Saugerties Fish & Game Club, Kingston Democratic Women, the Fabius Historical Society, and other groups.

Married to Joseph L. Lewis (SUNY Oneonta, 1972), they live in Kingston, NY.  She loves photography and painting and exhibits regionally.

Michael Brophy ’73

Michael Brophy ’73 graduated from Villanova Law School in 1976, held clerkships, and spent four years with the U.S. Third Court of Appeals.

In 1981, he joined the first of four firms in which he practiced. His career has includes appearances in the state and federal courts of more than 20 states as well as successful representation before the U.S. Supreme Court on a federal maritime action. Brophy retired in 2016.


Deborah M. Hamlin '86

Deborah Hamlin is chief executive officer of the Irrigation Association and executive director of the Irrigation Foundation. She has over 25 years of experience in working with professional and trade organizations.

At the Irrigation Association, Deborah was instrumental in shifting the organization’s focus to “promoting efficient irrigation.” Under her guidance, the association focuses on education and advocacy – ensuring competent professionals are designing, installing and maintaining irrigation systems and sharing the economic and environmental benefits of both agricultural and residential/commercial irrigation.

Prior to IA, Deborah served as executive director of the International Association of Plastics Distributors for 10 years. She has also held positions with the New York State Nurses’ Association and her father’s association management company in Albany, New York.

Deborah graduated from the New York State College at Oneonta and received her MBA from Rockhurst College in Kansas City, Missouri. Deborah is a certified association executive through the American Society of Association Executives, and was named an ASAE fellow in 2000. She is a recipient of the KCSAE Distinguished Association Executive Award. Deborah recently served on the board of the National Association of Wholesalers’ Institute for Distribution Excellence and as a member of the ASAE Certified Association Executive Professional Conduct Committee.

Deborah and her husband reside in Falls Church, Virginia.


Seth Asumah '82

Seth Asumah '82 was promoted to Distinguished Teaching Professor by the SUNY Board of Trustees in May. He is an 18-year member of the SUNY-Cortland Political Science Department.

A native of Ghana, Seth is Chair of the African American Studies Department, which became the Africana Studies Department this fall. He is a renowned scholar of African regimes and national development as well as multicultural issues in America. A prolific author, he has co-edited or co-written seven books, 16 book chapters and 14 scholarly articles.

Seth earned his masters degree in public administration and a doctorate in government and international relations from Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA. He began his teaching career in 1987 as an assistant professor of political science at Hartwick College. He joined the SUNY-Cortland faculty as an assistant professor in 1989, became an associate professor in 1995, and was promoted to professor in 2002.

Seth resides in Cortlandville. He has one daughter, Tosha, a graduate student in clinical psychology at Farleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey.

Susan H. Curry ’80

Susan H. Curry ’80 started her career in the private investors department at Wertheim & Co and moved to Individual Capital Management as a portfolio assistant.

She worked closely with the firm’s investment clients, reporting on the progress of their portfolios, making suggestions on their personal financial plans, and ensuring the accuracy of the custodial and reporting functions. She became a Vice President of Wertheim Schroder & Co. and then a Senior Vice President of Klingenstein, Fields & Co. She is currently the Chief Operating Officer. 

Dan Bagan ’84

Dan Bagan is Group President at Penton Media. He is currently responsible for several groups of magazines, websites, and events in the Food, Restaurant, Agriculture, and Meetings industries.

Some of the properties in his division are: Farm Progress Show, Husker Harvest Days Show, Nation’s Restaurant News, MUFSO, Supermarket News, The Farm Press titles (Delta FP, Western FP, Southwest FP and Southeast FP) Restaurant Hospitality, BEEF Magazine, Farm Industry News, Meetingsnet, and The Special Event. Dan is a member of the Penton Executive Committee. In 2013 Dan was named Top Publishing Executive by Crain’s Media Business in their annual Innovators Awards.

Gregory J. Aidala, Ph.D., ’72

Greg earned his master’s degree in mathematics education from SUNY Albany. He began his professional career at Bethlehem Central Middle School in 1973 teaching mathematics for four years, before becoming assistant principal and then principal of Chatham Middle School.

In 1986, he completed his Ph.D. in educational administration. Subsequently, Greg served as superintendent of schools at Salem Central (1988-2000) and Guilderland Central School District (2000-2007). In retirement, Greg does consulting work with local school districts and New York State as well as enjoying time for golf and tennis.

He has been a member of both the Salem and Colonie Guilderland Rotary Clubs and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Albany Pro Musica.


MaryAnn Pietromonaco '85

A twenty-five year veteran of the financial services industry, MaryAnn Pietromonaco ’85 has been with Morgan Stanley Wealth Management since 1999. She served as a branch manager until 2005 when she decided to step down from the responsibility to focus more on her clients’ and family’s needs.

Additionally, Pietromonaco is currently board secretary of Bad Girl Ventures, Inc. which educates and creates opportunities to female entrepreneurs. She is chairperson of the Planned Gifts Committee of St. Elizabeth Medical Center and also serves on the Gateway Community and Technical College Foundation Board and was a previous board member of the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.