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VOL. 45 | NO. 40 | Friday, October 1, 2021

Actor Denson, broadcaster Lyle honored By UT

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The University of Tennessee’s College of Communication has honored alumni James T. Denton (’86) and Courtney Lyle (’12).

Denton, known for his role as Mike Delfino in the ABC series Desperate Housewives, received the Alumni Professional Achievement Award, and rising sports broadcaster Lyle, who worked her first Olympic Games last month, was awarded with the Alumni Promise Award.

After graduating in 1986, Denton moved back to Nashville and spent four years selling advertising. It was during this time that he began acting in community theater productions. He enjoyed acting so much that he moved to Chicago to make it a full-time career. He landed theater roles in Chicago, including a portrayal of C.C. Showers in The Diviners, which earned him a nomination for a Best Actor Joseph Jefferson Award, Chicago’s only theater award.

Denton has received several awards, including the 2013 Faith and Family Best Film Actor Award for his role in Grace Unplugged. Other awards include a Prism Award, a Gold Derby TV Award, and two Screen Actors Guild Acting Awards for Desperate Housewives and a Teen Choice Award.

Denton has used his notoriety to support charitable causes.

Lyle, a 2012 College of Communication and Information graduate, joins the ranks of Volunteers who have gone on to achieve acclaim in sports broadcasting.

While a student at UT, Lyle served two internships at ESPN, an internship with the Tennessee Titans Radio Network, a sports internship at WVLT-TV in Knoxville and a season in 2012 producing The Pat Summitt Show for the Vol Network-IMG.

After graduation, she was picked up as a sports multimedia journalist and weekend sports anchor for WBIR-TV in Knoxville. She also spent a year and a half working as a weekend sports anchor for 13WMAZ-TV in Macon, Georgia.

In 2016, Lyle was hired by ESPN as a play-by-play broadcaster, making her the youngest full-time play-by- play broadcaster at ESPN.

In 2019, she worked 93 events across the country, covering basketball, volleyball, gymnastics and softball. Most notably, she served as a broadcaster for the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament and did play-by-play for the opening games alongside WNBA legend and Lady Vol basketball great Tamika Catchings (’00, ’05).

In 2021, Lyle was a play-by-play announcer for the Tokyo Olympics for men’s and women’s field hockey.

Wu, Olyer named BarberMcMurry professors

The University of Tennessee’s College of Architecture and Design has announced Jenny Wu and Dwayne Oyler, founding partners of Oyler Wu Collaborative, are the 2021 BarberMcMurry Endowed Professors.

An internationally known firm, Oyler Wu Collaborative focuses on design at all scales, from jewelry to urban infrastructure. The partners approach the architecture discipline through many lenses – from drawing and building to digital fabrication and augmented reality – that challenge the typical vision of the built environment.

Wu and Oyler are teaching the studio in-person and virtually throughout the fall 2021 semester. The studio, comprised of 5th-year and graduate-level Architecture students, is focused on a tectonic study of parts to a whole. Over the course of the semester, students’ work will progress from the analysis of a physical puzzle to the design of a museum, and through these experiences students are learning to understand mobility through space, the interplay of solid and void and the material language of assembly and tectonics.

In early October, students in the studio will travel to the Oyler Wu Collaborative offices in Los Angeles, an opportunity funded by the BarberMcMurry Professorship. While there, they will experience a critique of their work by Los Angeles-based academics and professionals as well as explore the architecture and urbanism of the city.

In 2021, Oyler and Wu won the prestigious Arts and Letters Award in architecture from The Academy of Arts and Letters.

Wu received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Columbia University and a master of architecture degree from Harvard Graduate School of Design. She is a member of the design faculty at Southern California Institute of Architecture.

An experienced teacher, Oyler earned a degree in architecture from Kansas State University and a master of architecture degree from Harvard University Graduate School of Design.

Berge selected as Oak Ridge Public Works director

Patrick Berge has been named director of Public Works for the City of Oak Ridge.

Berge, who previously served as Oak Ridge Public Works Utility Manager, has served as Interim Public Works Director since former Director Shira McWaters died in June. He begins this role immediately.

He has overseen all water and wastewater operations since 2018. He will now assume all Public Works operations including streets, stormwater and engineering.

Among Berge’s many certifications, he is a professional engineer of environmental engineering in both Tennessee and Nebraska.

Berge previously worked with the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality as a program specialist and with the City of Lincoln, Nebraska, as an associate engineer. He also worked for Knoxville Utilities Board as an engineer in operations.

He graduated from the University of Tennessee with a degree in civil engineering in 2005 and completed his master’s in environmental engineering in 2006.

Davis to chair Maryville College board

Michael C. Davis, Jr. of Maryville, has been elected chair of the Maryville College board of directors, effective immediately, for a term to expire in October 2023.

Davis is fulfilling the incomplete term of the late Board Chair A. Coleman “Cole” Piper ’68, who died suddenly and unexpectedly Aug. 26. Diane Humphreys-Barlow ’70 will continue her role as vice chair.

As the new board chair, Davis is the 21st person to hold the position in the college’s 202-year history. Davis joined the MC Board in 2012 and has served on the Buildings Grounds and Technologies Committee, as well as the Audit and Risk Management Committee. Most recently, he served as chair of the finance and investment committee.

He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee and spent most of his career working for Harrison Construction, serving as president from 2005 until 2009. Currently, he serves as regional director of First Horizon Bank.

Miller joins staff at TN Brain and Spine

The Covenant Health Care network has announced the addition of board-certified neurosurgeon Joshua Miller, M.D. to TN Brain and Spine.

He has more than 20 years of medical experience and returns to Knoxville to bring expert neurosurgical care to our community. He will perform minimally invasive and traditional procedures at Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center.

Miller’s clinical interests are brain tumors, cervical spine disc replacement and spinal tumors.

He attended medical school at Texas A&M University HSC College of Medicine and did his residency at The Ohio State University Medical School.

TN Brain and Spine is in the Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center for Advanced Medicine, Suite 214 in Knoxville.

Public relations firm adds Clouse to staff

Moxley Carmichael has hired Allie Clouse as a public relations specialist.

In this role, she will support the strategic communications needs of all the firm’s clients.

Clouse graduated with honors in spring 2020 from The University of Tennessee with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. She previously worked as a reporter at the Knoxville News Sentinel.

“Allie is an excellent addition to the firm, especially with her knowledge of the region,” says Moxley Carmichael Founder and CEO Cynthia Moxley. “She is a quick study and has taken on numerous and varied assignments in her new position already. Allie possesses the technical and interpersonal skills to complement the talented professionals at Moxley Carmichael and contribute to client projects, and we welcome her to our team.”

Clouse is a professional communicator with more than five years of experience. While attending UT, she led contributors at The Daily Beacon, traveled abroad to Sydney, Australia, and founded the college’s first women’s magazine.

Trust Company hires Cox as client specialist

The Trust Company of Tennessee has hired Connor Cox as a client specialist, based in the firm’s Knoxville office.

“Connor is passionate about connecting with and helping people, which is the foundation of our business,” says Daniel Carter, president of The Trust Company of Tennessee. “We welcome him to our team as he works with clients help provide financial confidence for their futures.”

Cox earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Tennessee at Martin in 2018 and an MBA from the University of Tennessee in 2020.

During his studies, he gained experience performing detailed financial analysis, evaluating financial statements and compiling data to produce in-depth reporting. He previously served as an officer for the Knoxville Police Department.

Myers picked for Williams endowed chair

James Myers, the Dennis Hendrix Distinguished Professor of Accounting, has been selected as the first faculty member to hold the Jan R. Williams Endowed Chair in Accounting Excellence in the University of Tennessee’s Haslam College of Business.

Named for the former head of the Department of Accounting and Information Management and dean of the college, the endowed chair was made possible by an anonymous $1 million donation and a matching sum from the Haslam family’s $40 million gift last year.

Williams joined UT as a professor in 1977. During his time at the college, he served as head of the AIM department and associate dean before becoming acting dean in 2000 and dean in July 2001, a role in which he remained until his retirement in 2013. In 2018, the American Accounting Association honored Williams as its Outstanding Accounting Educator, the highest such award the organization bestows. After retiring to Nashville, he became affiliated with Belmont University, where he served as interim dean of the Massey College of Business in 2019-20. He continues to serve on the AIM department’s advisory board.

Myers currently teaches an introductory financial accounting course. In it, Myers uses information he developed on data analytics and accessing/interpreting financial statements to emphasize to young undergrads accounting’s continuing relevance and dynamic nature.

His research includes examining the relation between financial statement numbers and firm value and the efficient prediction of future earnings, including the study of systematic errors that investors and financial analysts make, and how incentives influence managers’ accounting choices.

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