Rutgers Excellence across
New Jersey and Beyond

WE ARE YOU is an ongoing series of stories about the people who embody Rutgers University’s unwavering commitment to academic excellence, building community, and the common good.

‘Together, WE ARE YOU’

With more than 600,000 alumni worldwide and almost 360,000 living in New Jersey, Rutgers University’s powerful influence resonates throughout the state and around the globe. Every day, more than 67,000 students, 8,000 faculty members, and 14,000 staff on our campuses and in the field embrace excellence in the pursuit of education and research. Their explorations and expertise range from the arts to engineering, the sciences to the humanities, business to health care, farming to teaching to public service, and much, much more.

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Clarence Tokley

“Central to the work in my theater and film company is a profound belief in the power of community,” says Rutgers graduate Clarence Tokley LC’97. Tokley studied history and filmmaking as an undergrad and moved to Paris early in his career. A successful filmmaker, producer, writer, actor, and theater director, Tokley finds inspiration in collaboration and cultural exchange. 

Melissa Hartland

Melissa Hartland RBS’08, NCAS’08 bleeds scarlet. A Rutgers graduate and program coordinator for the MFA Creative Writing Program at Rutgers–Newark, Hartland is passionate about creating connections and building community. “I thrive off my work within our community,” she says. “I get to foster relationships across the university—not just amongst the staff but amongst the different departments, with the students, with the faculty.”

John and Barbara Broggi

“I’m the first in my family to graduate from any college,” says John Broggi RC’67. “Having that Rutgers degree has allowed me to do so many things that I could never have thought of doing before.” The connection to Rutgers for John and his wife, Barbara, runs deep and includes two children and three grandchildren with Rutgers degrees. A 2001 women’s basketball upset victory over undefeated Notre Dame sparked a decades-long relationship with Rutgers Athletics. In 2024, the Broggis received the Scarlet Legacy Award, which honors supporters who have significantly influenced Rutgers student-athletes.

Mike Emanuel

“Rutgers was the launchpad of my dreams,” says Mike Emanuel RC’90, Fox News chief Washington correspondent and news anchor.

His first week on campus, Emanuel saw an ad in The Daily Targum: The campus radio station, WRSU-FM, was looking for help. Emanuel responded and spent his college years covering live sports, fueling a love affair with broadcast journalism.

In his career in Washington with Fox News, Emanuel has had a front-row seat to presidential administrations throughout almost a quarter century of American history, traveling on Air Force One with President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama.

“I just wanted to be a newsperson. I just wanted to witness history and get a chance to tell people about it,” he says.

Ugo Arinzeh

Rutgers Business School graduate and expat Ugo Arinzeh RC’92, RBS’92 has built a life and successful real estate business abroad. Whether she is guiding someone to find their perfect home in London or mentoring young people, her passion for helping others shines through. “I want to be a role model of success and hopefully encourage other young people—other young girls—that the world is open for you,” she says.

Jeffrey Bluestone

Jeffrey Bluestone CC’74, GSNB’76 is an internationally regarded immunologist whose work has brought hope to people dealing with diabetes, cancer, and other diseases. He traces his love of research to his senior year at Rutgers where he worked on a research project under Robert Cousins, an assistant professor who was studying the role of heavy metals in metabolism. “My time in his lab was pretty transformational,” Bluestone says. “He was an incredible mentor and an amazing scientist, and I got very excited about the idea of going into research as a profession.”

Patrick Wallace

Reggae, electronic music, punk rock—as a student at Rutgers–Camden, Patrick Wallace CCAS’02 loved them all, and he punctuated his studies with stints working at the campus radio station. In WCCR Student Radio, Wallace found a second home and a place to connect with fellow students. Today, he helps other Rutgers students find ways to engage on campus as Associate Director of the Campus Center and Student Involvement at Rutgers–Camden. For Wallace, “the individual, personal development of students through cocurricular engagement, and the willingness of individuals to question, challenge, and learn from one another, is what leads to creating more inclusive, diverse, and equitable communities on college campuses and beyond.”

David T. Bender—An Enduring Legacy

The generosity of a Rutgers graduate from the last century continues to inspire students and alumni in a remarkable, ever-widening sphere of influence. A bequest from the estate of David T. Bender more than four decades ago established the David T. Bender Trust, which supports student-athletes in eight Olympic sports and offers Rutgers business students valuable hands-on experience managing the endowment. Rutgers alumni Jorge Barreiro RBS’08, RC’08, Ray Flood RC’67, Greg Francfort ENG’79, and Gianna Glatz SAS’21, GSE’23—each profoundly influenced in their own way by Bender’s spirit and actions—honor his legacy and carry it forward today.

Talib Morgan

From harnessing the power of web and mobile technologies to exploring the possibilities of artificial intelligence, Talib Morgan NCAS’96, RBS’98 helps companies adapt to a rapidly changing business landscape while simultaneously keeping the human touch front and center. Making connections—whether between technology or people—is important to Morgan. It’s the motivation behind his service as vice chair of the Rutgers University Alumni Association and as a board member of his local YMCA.

Cal Maradonna

Cal Maradonna met his wife, Bonnie CCAS’76, at Rutgers when they were undergraduates. Together, they established the Constance M. Ryan Scholarship to honor Bonnie’s mother, who earned her bachelor’s degree from Rutgers–Camden at age 72. They also established a scholarship in the name of Cal’s mother, Mary Frances Kehoe, to help talented students find their future through a life-changing Rutgers education. A Loyal Son of Rutgers, Cal has been part of the university community for more than 55 years—h​e and his family are scarlet through and through. 

Sean Brown

Sean Brown’s passion for community service took him across the country and around the world, from New Orleans to South Africa. As an undergrad at Rutgers, Brown founded Young Urban Leaders, an organization supporting leadership development for young adults. Today, in his work as CEO of Disruptxn, he continues to lead in his community working with small businesses and nonprofits focused on social justice and social mobility.

Rachel Degutz

Focus, dedication, commitment—Rachel Degutz SAS’20, GSE’21 brings these qualities and more to her classroom every day as a middle school science teacher. They have also served her well as a top athlete and 2023 Season 15 finalist on the hit television game show, American Ninja Warrior.

Kaleena Rogers

Get to know Kaleena Rogers, a Rutgers–Newark graduate helping the next generation of mental health professionals find their way forward. Kaleena shares her Rutgers pride as she walks among the stacks of Dana Library, where her father worked for more than 30 years.

Khary Golden

Meet Khary Golden, a Rutgers–Camden graduate who is improving education outcomes for children and families as the founder of Camden U, an innovative nonprofit that provides Camden residents the opportunity to enroll in the nation's first competency-based college degree program.