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Our Staff

Jodi Kennedy

Director

Jodi Kennedy is the Director of the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement. She provides organizational leadership to the department through strategic planning, budget management, and professional development. Jodi earned her Bachelor of Arts from California State University, Sacramento, and her Master of Science in College Student Personnel from the University of Tennessee.  Jodi is originally from California and has been at Georgia Southern since July of 2006.

Office Location: Russell Union 1056, Statesboro Campus

E-mail: jmiddleton@georgiasouthern.edu

John Banter, EdD

Associate Director

Dr. John Banter is the Associate Director of the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement. He directs the Southern Leaders Program, supervises Sustainability Programs, and teaches leadership courses. John earned his doctorate in Educational Leadership from Georgia Southern. His research endeavors focus on leadership behavior development, the gamification of leadership, and the use of student-centered design for programmatic development. His other graduate degrees are in the fields of Leadership and Homeland Security Management.

John is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach, a certified EQ-i 2.0/EQ-i 360 facilitator for emotional intelligence development with MHS, a certified Enneagram facilitator through Cloverleaf, and a certified facilitator of the Student Leadership Practices Inventory.  In his spare time, John is the President of the Statesboro Kiwanis Club and the Coastal Georgia Camellia Society in Savannah.  He has been at Georgia Southern since June of 2011.

Office Location: Russell Union 1056, Statesboro Campus

E-mail: jbanter@georgiasouthern.edu

Urkovia Andrews, DrPH

Assistant Director for Service-Learning

Dr. Urkovia Andrews is the Assistant Director for Service-Learning in the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement. Urkovia coordinates the Service-Learning Faculty Fellows, the Service-Learning Student Facilitators, and oversees community engagement programs. Urkovia is a Triple Eagle with a Bachelor of Science in Public Relations, a Master of Public Health, and a Doctorate of Public Health degree from Georgia Southern University.

Prior to assuming her current position, Urkovia served as a faculty member in the Communication Arts Department and then as Executive Director of the Hearts and Hands Clinic, a local non-profit. Having worked with service-learning as a faculty member and as a community partner, Urkovia is committed to assisting faculty and community organizations in the development of service-learning opportunities. Urkovia is a a certified EQ-i 2.0/EQ-i 360 facilitator for emotional intelligence development with MHS.

Office Location: Russell Union 1056, Statesboro Campus

E-mail: uandrews@georgiasouthern.edu

Kira Jatoft

Assistant Director, Sustainability and Leadership

Kira Jatoft is the Assistant Director for Sustainability and Leadership in of the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement. She coordinates the Sustain Southern Program and teaches LEAD courses. Kira earned her Bachelor of Arts from Loyola Marymount University, and her Master of Education in Postsecondary Administration and Student Affairs from the University of Southern California. Prior to this position, Kira served as the Coordinator of Fraternity and Sorority Life. Kira is originally from California and has been with Georgia Southern since September of 2020.

Office Location: Russell Union 1056, Statesboro Campus

E-mail: kjatoft@georgiasouthern.edu

VACANT

Leadership Educator

Office Location: Russell Union 1056, Statesboro Campus

E-mail: leader@georgiasouthern.edu

Kasie Thompson

Alternative Breaks Coordinator

Kasie Thompson is the Alternative Breaks Coordinator. She coordinates the planning and execution of the Alternative Breaks program. Kasie earned her Bachelor of Art in Graphic Design, Marketing, and Communication from Western Illinois University. She earned her Master of Science in College Student Personnel Administration and Graduate Certificate in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies from Illinois State University. Kasie started this position in June of 2021.

Office Location: Russell Union 1056, Statesboro Campus

E-mail: kasiethompson@georgiasouthern.edu

Emily Tanner

Community Engagement Coordinator

Emily Tanner is the Community Engagement Coordinator for the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement. She helps coordinate our local service initiative program – Serve912. Emily is a Double Eagle, and graduated from Georgia Southern with her Bachelor of Science in Psychology in 2017, and her Master of Education in Higher Education Administration in 2020. Emily has been in this role since June 2021.

Prior to this role, as a graduate student, Emily worked with the Academic Success Center at Georgia Southern to facilitate their Peer Mentor Program and in September 2020, she came onboard with Georgia Southern full-time as an Academic Advisor in the Waters College of Health Professions.

Office Location: Russell Union 1056, Statesboro Campus

E-mail: etanner@georgiasouthern.edu

Rachel Taylor

Coordinator of Leadership & Community Engagement – Armstrong Campus

Rachel Taylor is the Leadership and Community Engagement Coordinator for the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement on Armstrong Campus. She coordinates the Nick Mamalakis Emerging Leaders Program and our local service initiative program – Serve912. Rachel is a Double Eagle, and graduated from Georgia Southern with her Bachelor of Arts in English with a focus in Professional Business Communication in 2019, and her Master of Art in Professional Communication and Leadership in 2021. Rachel has been in this role since May of 2022.

Office Location: Student Union Suite D234, Armstrong Campus

E-mail: rtaylor@georgiasouthern.edu

Cassie Corbin

Administrative Assistant II

Office Location: Russell Union 1056, Statesboro Campus

E-mail: ccorbin@georgiasouthern.edu

Last updated: 8/4/2022