Board of Visitors

The Board of Visitors is a group of alumni and friends who support, advise, and advocate for the Sociology Department. The Board is dedicated to promoting the long-term development of relationships with alumni and friends, and to building the resource base necessary to sustain the Department as a world leader in the social sciences. The Board may advise and assist with development and outreach efforts, help the Department expand career opportunities for students, keep the Department informed of best business practices, and serve as goodwill ambassadors for the Department.

Members of the Board of Visitors

Martin Preizler (Board Chair)
Beth Garrow
Kingsley Gobourne
Janet Hankin
Alison Horn
Jesus Martinez
Andrew Richter
Tom Weirath
Lisa Youngers

Ex officio members

Abby Funseth
James Montgomery
Pamela Oliver
James Raymo

Abby Funseth is the Associate Director of Development for the Wisconsin Foundation & Alumni Association. She is the liaison for the Department of Sociology. You can reach her at 608-405-0433 or via e-mail:

Beth Garrow - Since 1994, Beth has worked for non-profits in K-12 and higher education as well as health care. Currently, she is the Major Gifts Officer for The Rotary Foundation serving Zone 26 which includes California, Arizona, Nevada and Hawaii. She has a well-established track record of building development programs and raising major gifts from individuals, corporations and foundations both as an administrator and as a professional fundraiser.

Beth began her development career in 1994 when she moved to Illinois from Southern California. She first served College of DuPage as Campaign and Major Gifts Officer, then as Director of Development and Alumni Affairs at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, followed by Vice President of the Foundation for Provena Saint Joseph Medical Center in Joliet, IL. Prior to joining The Rotary Foundation, Beth was the Western Regional Partnerships Director for MIND Research Institute, based in Irvine, CA.

Prior to her move to Illinois, Beth's career included ten years of public administration with the City of Hawthorne, California with a focus in community redevelopment. Beth holds a Bachelor's Degree in Sociology and Correctional Administration from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Southern California.

In addition to her passion for fundraising, Beth has a successful track record in developing community partnerships and enjoys being an active volunteer in the communities she serves. Beth and her husband Tom commute between their home offices in Willowbrook, IL and Carlsbad, CA. They have two children, a daughter-in-law, a granddaughter and big dog Jack.

Kingsley Gobourn is a Community Outreach Officer with Community Development Banking at AVP Old National Bank. Kingsley has worked in the financial industry for 10 years in areas of retail banking management, investments and community development. Kingsley also has over 7 years of work experience for nonprofits and UW-Madison diversity and climate programs. As a Community Outreach Officer, he manages community outreach efforts in the Wisconsin market. He focuses on assessing community needs, and developing collaborative partnerships to promote community development lending, housing initiatives, economic development and programs that serve the low- to moderate- income communities.

Kingsley has over 5 years’ experience using sports to build character as coach of track, football and basketball, working with both young men and women. Kingsley also serves on the Family Selection Committee for Habitat for Humanity and most recently Board Member on the Old National Bank Foundation.

Kingsley states “My mission is to improve the overall health and stability of the communities we serve. We engage with organizations and leaders throughout our footprint to assess community needs and determine how to best utilize our resources to meet those needs. Our team is truly passionate about consistently striving to build programs and partnerships that help individuals and families reach their goals!”

Janet Hankin is professor of sociology at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan where she served as the Department Chair four times. She was an Associate Dean in the College of Liberal Arts at Wayne State University. She received her B.A. and M.A. degrees in sociology from Case Western Reserve University and her Ph.D. from the Department of Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1974. After receiving her doctorate, Dr. Hankin was a Research Scientist at The Johns Hopkins University and moved to Detroit in 1986. As chair of the Medical Sociology Section of the American Sociological Association, Dr. Hankin was the co-editor of an Extra Issue of the Journal of Health and Social Behavior celebrating 50 years of medical sociology. Her research has focused on primary care and mental disorder, and the prevention of drinking during pregnancy.

Alison Horn graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 2008 with a BS in Sociology with comprehensive honors. Currently, Alison is the Investigative Supervisor at Civil Rights Corps (CRC), a non-profit legal organization that specializes in innovative civil rights litigation to reform the American criminal system. CRC has brought successful legal challenges to the criminalization of poverty in states across the US, through lawsuits challenging private probation systems, debtors prisons, and money bail. In her role, Alison spends much of her time interviewing and telling the stories of people directly impacted by injustice in the criminal legal system, and trains and mentors new investigators to work with CRC's litigators.

Prior to her work at Civil Rights Corps, Alison was a criminal defense investigator at the Federal Public Defender for the District of the Virgin Islands and at the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, and did development and reentry work at Free Minds Book Club, a DC-based non-profit providing literacy and reentry programming for incarcerated teenagers.

While at Wisconsin, Alison had the opportunity to assist Professor Pamela Oliver with her research analyzing data on racial disparities in prosecution and incarceration and completed a senior honors thesis focusing on voting rights for people with felony convictions. Alison was captain-coach of the UW Women's Club Lacrosse team. A native of Ithaca, New York, Alison resides in Washington, DC. She enjoys scuba diving, spending time with family, and watching the Packers and Badgers.

Jesús Martínez is Global Director of Business Development for ABS Global, Inc. He is responsible for key technology projects for ABS and most recently has assisted the company in building the ABS China business. He spends over 50% of his time traveling to Beijing, Shanghai and Inner Mongolia, China. In addition, Jesús works with senior managers on key special projects and assists global operating units with key growth market opportunities. Jesús has over 25 years of experience in animal agriculture management and developing selling organizations and profit centers around the globe including technology start-ups at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. At ABS Global he has held positions as Managing Director for North America and Latin America. He has also held executive positions for the parent company Genus plc in the United Kingdom, Brazil, and Latin America. In the mid-1990's he held positions of Vice President of Marketing and Sales for Infigen and Vice President of Caribbean Fertilizer Group (owned by W.R. Grace & Company, a former sister company of ABS Global.) Mr. Martínez holds Masters coursework and Executive courses in International Management and B.S. degrees in Policy and Administration and Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Mr. Martínez has been with the company since August of 1987. Originally from San Juan, Puerto Rico, he has travelled to over 40 countries and speaks fluent Spanish and Portuguese. He resides in Madison, Wisconsin and is an avid Badger fan.

James Montgomery is professor in the UW-Madison Sociology department. He holds a PhD in economics from MIT, and taught at Northwestern and the London School of Economics before moving to Wisconsin in 2000. His interest in sociology began in graduate school, with a dissertation essay on the role of social networks in the hiring process. He is a formal theorist with a wide range of substantive interests, including labor markets, social networks, religion, self-concept formation, and intergenerational transmission of cultural traits. His articles have appeared in major sociology journals (American Sociological Review, American Journal of Sociology, Sociological Methodology) as well as major economics journals (American Economic Review, Quarterly Journal of Economics). His current research focuses on two-sex population models.

Pamela Oliver - Pamela Oliver is a professor of sociology at the University of Wisconsin who has published many articles and a book on collective action and social movements, including her influential work on the "critical mass" with Gerald Marwell, studies of news coverage of protests, and theoretical work on the coevolution of movements, protest and news coverage. Since 1999, she has devoted much of her time to analyzing and speaking about statistical patterns of racial disparity in criminal justice in Wisconsin and the nation. She has made over 100 public presentations on these issues and served on the Governor's Commission to Reduce Racial Disparities in Criminal Justice in 2007-8 and the Dane County Task on Racial Disparities 2008-9. She is working on a project about the politics of incarceration and analyzing differences among US states and metro areas in their racial disparity patterns and is developing an integration of theories of ethnic conflict, social movements, social control, and repression. She teaches "Ethnic Movements in the US" which compares American Indian, African American, Mexican American, and Asian American movements and politics. She has served as the chair of the Department of Sociology twice and has also been a member of the Asian American Studies Faculty Advisory Committee for many years. She now has an active “public sociology” presence through her academic blog Race, Politics, Justice.

Marty Preizler - I have served for over forty years in executive positions in Wisconsin state government, managed care organizations, and higher education. I earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UW-Madison and UM-Ann Arbor.

I was President and CEO of three health insurance companies, including ten years leading Physicians Plus Insurance Corp. in Madison, WI. In my early career I directed the WI Medicaid program for seven years. Recently I served as the Dean of the School of Business at Edgewood College (2009-2014).

At Edgewood, I developed, coordinated and taught in the MBA in Health Systems Leadership Program and have taught Organizational Effectiveness and Improvement, the MBA HSL Capstone course, Health Systems Strategic Management, and Principles of Health Insurance.

I have practiced as an independent management consultant assisting businesses and organizations in leadership, strategy, process management and quality improvement. I have been a National Baldrige examiner and Wisconsin Forward Award judge.

I have served on the Edgewood College Board of Trustees, the Capitol Lakes Retirement Community Foundation, the Wisconsin Center for Performance Excellence, the Rainbow Project Advisory Council, the Madison Symphony Board, I have also served on several United Way of Dane County campaign cabinets and have been a member of the Rotary Club of Madison. I currently serve on the WEA Trust Board of Trustees, a state-wide public-sector health insurance company, and the UW-Madison Dept. of Sociology Advisory Board.

Jim Raymo is the current Chair of the Department of Sociology. Professor Raymo’s research focuses on the demography of family change and aging in Japan and the U.S. His work has appeared in numerous journals, including the American Sociological Review, Demography, Journal of Marriage and Family, and Social Science Research. He is Director of the Concentration in Analysis and Research at UW Madison—an elective concentration program within the Sociology undergraduate curriculum, preparing students interested in statistics and research methods for careers in applied social research.

Andrew Richter is the founder and president of Richter Associates, Inc., a New York-based consulting firm specializing in compensation, benefits, and human resources strategies. His professional experience includes both management consulting and corporate executive roles as well as opportunities to contribute to these fields through publications, addresses to professional conferences, and service on the WorldatWork (American Compensation Association) Board of Directors. From 1995 to 2011, Andrew held a variety of corporate HR executive positions, first with IBM (1995-2002) and then as the SVP of Compensation and Benefits at NBC Universal (2002-2011). Andrew holds a Ph.D. and an M.A. from Yale, where he was awarded fellowships by the National Science Foundation and the Social Science Research Council. His inter-disciplinary doctoral dissertation (incorporating sociology, economics, and political science) was on the impact of multi-national corporations in developing countries. Andrew received his B.S. (with Honors) from the University of Wisconsin (Madison). At U.W., he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and played on the Varsity Soccer Club.

Thomas Weirath is retired from a twenty-year career with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. His responsibilities included consulting with Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans around the country on issues of performance measurement such as operations, managed care and cost containment. His work included working with health plans to prepare them for accreditation by national organizations. Prior to that he worked in health planning with the state of Wisconsin where he was staff to a medical education review committee. He served also as an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville where he taught courses on organizational behavior, sociology of health care and political sociology.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Akron, and a master’s degree and Ph.D. in sociology, with an emphasis in organizational behavior, from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He now spends his time volunteering, reading, and writing. One volunteer commitment was serving on a committee at the Archdiocese of Chicago to develop an educational partnership with a school system in Nigeria. He also recently began participating on a committee that focuses on issues of domestic violence.

Lisa R. Youngers currently leads the Fiber Broadband Association as its Chief Executive - the largest trade association in the Americas dedicated to all-fiber-optic broadband. Youngers brings more than two decades of communications experience to the Association ranging from wireline/wireless telecommunications, spectrum policy, satellite and broadcast to state infrastructure.

Most recently, Youngers was CEO of Nextlink Wireless, where she drove all operational, technical and financial aspects of the business as well as M&A activity. Prior to leading Nextlink, Youngers was Vice President and Assistant General Counsel of Federal Advocacy and Strategy at XO Communications where she advocated for and led the company’s initiatives involving federal policy, operations and technology. Before that, she served as Federal Regulatory Counsel for General Communication, Inc. and MCI advocating on competition issues.

Youngers also served as Assistant Attorney General for the state of Minnesota as counsel to the Public Utilities Commission and the Rail/Trucking Safety Board. Youngers is a member of the Minnesota and District of Columbia Bars. She earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a JD from the Mitchell Hamline School of Law.