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Faculty and Advising

Director of Graduate Studies

Amy Kircher

Amy Kircher

DrPH, Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Amy Kircher is codirector of the Strategic Partnership and Research Collaboratory (SPARC) and senior advisor to the Food Protection and Defense Institute, a Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence. She leads collaborative initiatives and coordinates research across the University system focusing on interdisciplinary, institutional efforts to solve grand challenges and build innovative solutions. Her current research includes identification and warning of food disruptions and emerging disease through data fusion and analysis; supply chains; and delivery of innovative solutions to the field.


Jeannine Kessler head shot

Jeannine Kessler

MBA with a finance focus from University of St. Thomas; BA, organizational management and communication, Concordia University

Ms. Kessler provides leadership for applied business undergraduate courses, which support the College's undergraduate majors and serve students from across the campus and the wider community.  She also manages faculty recruitment and curriculum development for new graduate-level applied business courses. Recently she served as assistant provost at Hamline University. Prior to that, she was a faculty member and associate dean of the College of Business and Organizational Leadership at Concordia University. She has led programs and operations in corporate and academic environments in the areas of finance, human resources, and long-range planning and project management. She is currently working on a DBA in human resources.

Carol Rinkoff

Carol Rinkoff

PhD, organization and management, Capella University; MA, organizational management, Concordia University; BS, administration and management science, Carnegie-Mellon University

Rinkoff has previously served higher education institutions in Minnesota, California, and Maryland as the director of undergraduate and graduate business programs, dean of academic affairs, dean of a satellite campus, and vice president of academic affairs. An advocate of online and hybrid learning, Rinkoff has been a presenter at national and international education conferences.

Brian Simons

Brian Simons

MBA, supply chain and operations focus, Arizona State University; BS, international finance, Arizona State University; BA, history, Arizona State University; BA, political science, Arizona State University; BA, religious studies, Arizona State University.

Brian Simons has been an adjunct instructor since 2018 focusing on management and finance topics. In addition to teaching, he currently serves as the CEO of Janus Logistics Technologies, a VC back technology firm in the supply chain and logistics space. Previously he held leadership roles at Fortune 500 companies including Honeywell, United Technologies, and NCR as well as private equity owned firms.

Avi Viswanathan

JD, Suffolk University

Avi Viswanathan serves as Program Director for the Nexus Community Engagement Institute (CEI). Avi has years of professional experience working in nonprofits, the public sector, and philanthropy. Prior to joining Nexus, he was a Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellow with the Bush Foundation. He has also held the positions of campaign director for HIRE Minnesota and field representative for US Senator Al Franken. Avi currently sits on the board of the Headwaters Foundation for Justice and previously sat on the board of NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota and the Dayton’s Bluff Community Council. Avi holds a JD from Suffolk University, a BS from Georgia Tech, and a certificate in Decision Analysis from the London School of Economics.


Margo Gray

Margo Gray

Margo has over a decade of experience in the nonprofit and arts communities and believes in building relationships between disciplines and demographics to create more equitable opportunities for learning and advancement. She has served as Director of Member Services at Donors Forum, where she led professional development programming and networking for grant makers. She is the founder of Playable Artworks, a sponsored project of Springboard for the Arts, chaired the Gender Equity Committee at the Chicago Storefront Summit, and has developed equity and sensitivity procedures. Margo holds a BA from Grinnell College and an MFA from Carnegie Mellon University, and she was a Fulbright Fellow at the Moscow Art Theatre School.