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OU Alumni News & Milestones

If you have news, an award or honor, life event or obituary to share, please email Bill Moakley, Director of Alumni Communications,

OU Grad Named to 2015 Texas Rising Stars

courtney bowline

A graduate of the University of Oklahoma has been named to the 2015 Texas Rising Stars listing of that state’s top lawyers.

Courtney G. Bowline, (’03, Finance, summa cum laude), is a litigation associate with Deans and Lyons, LLP who handles matters for both plaintiffs and defendants in a variety of civil litigation cases in both state and federal courts. Her practice focuses primarily on commercial litigation, toxic tort, premises, and products liability litigation. Bowline attended the University of Texas School of Law, where she graduated with honors in 2006. During law school, she was a member of the Legal Research Board and a Teaching Quizmaster. She is a member of the Texas Bar Association, Dallas Bar Association, and Dallas Association of Young Lawyers. Prior to joining Deans & Lyons, Courtney was an associate at DeHay & Elliston.

“When you stand up in court to represent your client’s interests, how long you have been an attorney is no longer a consideration. All that matters is your effectiveness, and each of these attorneys can stand toe to toe with the very best in the profession. They prove it every time they enter a courtroom,” says firm co-founder Michael Lyons.

Bowline represents clients in state and federal courts, handling litigation matters involving complex commercial disputes, catastrophic personal injury and wrongful death cases, premises liability and products liability. This is her second Texas Rising Stars selection.

Texas Rising Stars recognizes the state’s leading attorneys who are 40 or younger, or who have been in practice for 10 years or less. Selection is based on peer nominations and editorial review, with only 2.5 percent of eligible attorneys chosen for the honor each year. The complete 2015 list can be found online at and also appears in the April 2015 print editions of Texas Monthly and Texas Rising Stars magazines.

Deans & Lyons, LLP, has offices in Dallas and Houston. Its lawyers routinely handle high-stakes cases of all kinds, including business disputes, intellectual property, products liability, personal injury, wrongful death, real estate, securities, and construction cases.

Burkus Named to 40 under 40 Professors List


A University of Oklahoma graduate has been listed by Nerd Scholar — a website that helps students make informed decisions about their education — on its 40 under 40: Professors who Inspire list.

David Burkus (’08), who earned his master of arts in Human Resources, is on the 2015 list.

The list recognizes professors who captivate and engage students in the classroom, demonstrate a desire to interact with students outside of class, and collaborate on research projects.

A management professor at Oral Roberts in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Burkus has received national recognition for his inspirational book The Myths of Creativity. He says his favorite part about teaching is “giving students a framework for understanding their experiences at work and to make better decisions in their future work.” He hopes his teaching and writing about management “contributes to a larger goal of making the working world better” by the time his two young sons grow up

Click here to visit this year's 40 under 40 list.

Shenathia Manuel Named Missouri S&T Post


Shenethia Manuel was recently named vice chancellor of human resources, equity and inclusion at Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T).

Manuel (’76) earned her bachelor’s of science degree in Education from the University of Oklahoma.

Manuel joined Missouri S&T in 2008 and previously served as associate vice chancellor for human resource services, Affirmative Action, diversity and inclusion.

“Our entire campus community benefits from a climate that respects individual needs, abilities and potential, and is characterized by equal access for all regardless of cultural differences,” says Chancellor Cheryl B. Schrader. “Under Shenethia Manuel’s direction, the office of human resources, equity and inclusion will continue to take a leading role in making Missouri S&T a more vibrant, welcoming place to learn and work. I thank Shenethia and her team for their ongoing efforts to foster this inclusive environment.”

Manuel holds a law degree from the University of Texas-Austin and a master of arts in ministry and culture from Phillips Theological Seminary in Tulsa.

She also serves on the executive committee for the Commission on Access, Diversity and Excellence, a commission of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU).

As vice chancellor of human resources, equity and inclusion, Manuel is responsible for overseeing Missouri S&T’s human resources, diversity and inclusion initiatives; Affirmative Action and Equal Employment Opportunity oversight and planning; equity issues; and oversight of the university’s Title IX compliance. As S&T’s chief diversity officer, Manuel also serves as the liaison to the Chancellor’s Committee on African American Recruitment and Retention and serves as chair of the Chancellor’s Committee on Diversity and Inclusion. In addition, she and the chief diversity officers of the other University of Missouri System campuses are working together on systemwide initiatives to strengthen diversity and inclusion on all campuses and at the UM System.

If you have news, an award or honor, life event or obituary to share, please email Bill Moakley, Director of Alumni Communications,

If you have a life event to share with us, please email Bill Moakley, Director of Alumni Communications,

Charlene Sennett ('86)

Charlene Sennett (’86), MD, an associate professor of radiology at the University of Chicago Medicine and a highly respected clinical specialist in breast imaging, died at the medical center on March 23, 2015, after months of illness. She suffered a stroke while awaiting a heart transplant.

She was  1986 graduate of the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine.

Sennett, 62, was well known throughout the Chicago area as a thoughtful and talented clinician, dedicated educator and fierce advocate for her patients.

"She devoted her professional life to patient care," said Gillian Newstead, MD, director of global breast imaging at the University. "She was diligent in her work. She inspired many residents to become breast-imaging specialists."

"No one was happier than Charlene when an early cancer diagnosis led to a good patient outcome," said colleague Robert Schmidt, MD, professor emeritus of radiology. "But whenever she received a compliment she would brush it off, saying 'I will try to do better next time.'"

Sennett was a co-author of multiple studies focused on the acquisition and computer-aided analysis of diagnostic images. She contributed to scientific presentations, invited lectures, publications and collaborative grant projects, all focused on breast cancer prevention, detection, diagnosis and therapy. She was a principal or co-investigator on many studies evaluating new breast cancer imaging techniques or efforts to combine multiple imaging and diagnostic technologies, such as ultrasound, mammography and MRI.

"She was an exceptional doctor and person," said Greg Karczmar, PhD, professor of radiology and director of magnetic resonance imaging research at the University of Chicago. "She was wonderful with patients—kind, helpful, conscientious and sweet. But she also shared her extraordinary expertise on clinical breast imaging with the research team. When she spoke, we paid attention."
Sennett was an effective and popular teacher for medical students, radiology residents, research fellows and established physicians. From 2005 to 2013, she helped train 18 clinical and research fellows, four of whom are now faculty members at the University. She was a frequent guest speaker at University of Chicago continuing medical education events.

"She was a great clinical collaborator, capable and hardworking, polite yet clearly direct," said Maryellen Giger, PhD, the A.N. Pritzker Professor in the Department of Radiology and the Committee on Medical Physics, and director of the Biological Science Division's Imaging Research Institute. "She made sure that the breast-imaging service was on top of the national quality standards—a demanding task—but was always willing to take time to help the medical-physics students and her research-oriented colleagues understand how their work intersected with clinical care."

Born September 25, 1952, in Crawfordsville, Ind., Charlene Annette Sennett studied to become a nurse at DePauw University in Greencastle, Ind. She earned her BS in nursing with "high distinction," followed by a, MS in cardiopulmonary physiology from the University of Washington in 1977.

She practiced as a nurse for several years, and continued to work as a nurse in an acute cardiovascular unit while attending medical school. Colleagues noted that her training and clinical work as a nurse prepared her well for a central role in patient care.

After her residency, she spent 11 years as a staff radiologist with a private group at St. Francis Hospital in Blue Island, IL. She returned to the University of Chicago in 2002 as an assistant professor of radiology. She was promoted to associate professor in 2011, and served as interim section chief of breast imaging from 2011 through 2014. During that time, her team was designated a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence by the American College of Radiology.

Sennett is survived by her husband, H. Rodney Holmes, PhD; their daughter, Robin Holmes, MD; and son, Kyle. A service was held on Saturday, March 28, in Wingate, Indiana.

The family has requested, in lieu of flowers or gifts, that donations be made to