Excellence in Leadership Awards were bestowed upon six outstanding alumni, Toya Corbett ’97, Trinisha Dean ’06, ’13, ’14 M.A., Marsaynee Attia ’05, ’08 M.S., Boris Rogers ’06, Tchernavia Montgomery ’08, ’09 M.S.W. and Rose Brown ’17, at a campus luncheon, hosted by the UNC Charlotte Black Alumni Chapter Friday, Nov. 5.
“Being able to honor outstanding alumni who are committed to making an incredible impact is a privilege,” said Charles Kirby ’89, president of the Black Alumni Chapter. “These individuals are shining examples of UNC Charlotte’s mission and values.”
The Excellence in Leadership Awards recognize the accomplishments of UNC Charlotte alumni and friends who have achieved excellence in the areas of education, entrepreneurship, financial services, health care, philanthropy, public service and STEM.
Toya Corbett is dedicated to upholding the values of civility, academic excellence, inclusiveness and community engagement. She recently accepted a position as associate vice president for strategic initiatives in the Division of Student Affairs at the University of Virginia. As assistant vice president for student affairs for the UNC System, Corbett helped students and families navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. She co-created the Friends-Giving Scholarship in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and has served in various leadership positions for Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. on the chapter, regional and international level. Corbett completed a bachelor’s degree in psychology; her master’s and doctoral degrees are from Morgan State University.
Trinisha Dean has a passion for giving back to disadvantaged students. She worked tirelessly to get Mecklenburg County’s MECK Pre-K program off the ground and in one year helped to expand from 20 pre-K centers with 33 classes to 37 centers with 69 classes. Dean is involved with the North Carolina Association for the Education of Young Children and its efforts to support teachers and programs and worked with UNC Charlotte’s Graduate Office to create two scholarships for students in the Child and Family Development program. She earned a bachelor’s degree in child and family development, a graduate certificate in teaching and a master’s degree in early childhood education from the Cato College of Education.
Marsaynee Attia is an influential decision maker who shares a desire to improve the lives and conditions of others. As reliability engineer for Duke Energy Corporation, she is instrumental in resolving complex technical issues and developing sound engineering recommendations for corrective actions and improvements; and is a member of the Duke Energy Business Women Network’s programs committee and the Duke Energy’s Advocates for African-Americans group. Attia is involved with the National Society of Black Engineers, serving as president of the Charlotte Professionals Chapter, is a member of The William States Lee College of Engineering’s Alumni Diversity Committee and is the Charlotte Area Director for Emerald Care International. She earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from The William States Lee College of Engineering.
Boris Rogers has a passion and talent for the art of spoken word, which has empowered him to give back to others in an impactful way. He is director of creative engagement for the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center and is slam master for Slam Charlotte, where he has led a team of poets to earn multiple national and international titles. Rogers earned an Emmy Award, received recognition from the NAACP and has been awarded several accolades in the spoken word entertainment industry. He uses his talent to give back to UNC Charlotte and has provided motivational poetry for the Donning of the Kente commencement ceremonies, the Dr. Derrick Griffith Service Leadership fund video and 4/9 Day. Rogers completed a bachelor’s degree in mass communication from the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.
Tchernavia Montgomery is a servant leader at heart and licensed clinical social worker. She has devoted 17 years to empowering those most in need. As executive director of Care Ring, a nonprofit dedicated to providing health services for those who are uninsured and underinsured, she and her team annually serve more than 7,000 Mecklenburg County residents and are leaders in collaborative efforts to improve community health. Montgomery serves as an adjunct faculty member within the College of Health and Human Services and chairs the School of Social Work’s Community Advisory Board. She serves on a variety of boards in the Charlotte region and is a senior fellow with the America Leadership Fellowship. Montgomery earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in social work from the College of Health and Human Services.
Rose Brown aims to leave a legacy of hope for women of underrepresented and marginalized populations. She is pursuing a doctorate in organizational behavior studies from the UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, and her research investigates the organizational context needed to empower underrepresented women in the workplace. Brown serves as a member of the Mecklenburg County Domestic Violence Speakers Bureau working to create awareness and dialogue around this complex issue. She completed a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the Belk College of Business.
The Excellence in Leadership luncheon was one of several events sponsored by the UNC Charlotte Black Alumni Chapter during Homecoming Weekend 2021. Other events included a Green Light Kick-Off, welcome reception, the inaugural Walk it Out Sneaker Ball, the annual Homecoming After-Party and a Golden Time of Day Jazz brunch.
The UNC Charlotte Black Alumni Chapter supports participation in University life and promotes the education of current black students through supporting scholarship opportunities, mentoring and community outreach. The chapter enhances black alumni participation through networking, communication and program development.
Photo, left to right, Trinisha Dean, Tchernavia Montgomery, Boris Rogers, Toya Corbett, Marsaynee Attia and Charles Kirby, president of the Black Alumni Chapter.