Ralph Foster is Assistant Vice President for University Outreach and Public Service at Auburn University, with almost 30 years of service in the Outreach division. A third generation alumnus, he has a BS in business administration from Auburn. Foster also received an MS in human resources from Troy University, and has additional study in adult and continuing education at the University of Georgia National Leadership Institute in Adult and Continuing Education. Foster leads initiatives including community and institutional partnerships, civic engagement projects and interdisciplinary outreach programs. He is responsible for non-credit continuing education certification compliance, and also serves as the division's development and strategic planning liaison. Foster’s professional activities include board and committee positions in several state, regional, and national academic and community organizations. He has received a number of awards and recognitions for his civic and professional engagement over the years, including the title of Fellow in the Society for Advancement of Management, the highest professional designation of that international organization. His publications include journal articles and book chapters on ethics, education, management, marketing, and civic engagement.
Janie Brown graduated from the University of Alabama with a B.S. in Commerce and Business Administration majoring in Marketing and obtaining concentrations in Sales Management and Market Research. Janie has been with Auburn University since 2000. Before joining Auburn as a graphic artist, she served as a manager with Creative Services at the Opelika-Auburn News for nearly 10 years. Mrs. Brown offers graphic and creative support to all of Outreach's units and projects. Janie grew up in Auburn and continues to enjoy the area with her husband and daughter.
Whitney Lee earned a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing and a certification in Marketing Research from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2012. Whitney is currently working on her certification in Non-profit Management, which she plans to use to assist non-profit organizations with long-term sustainable resources. Prior to coming to Auburn, Whitney worked with the State of Alabama as an Ombudsman, investigating complaints in nursing homes and assistant living facilities in East Alabama. She transferred to the Auburn University Office of Public Service in 2018 as an AmeriCorps VISTA where she serves as an assistant advisor to Circle K International and Campus Kitchen and plans training programs for non-profit agencies.
Katey Nelson graduated from Auburn University in May 2011 with a B.F.A. in Graphic Design. Originally from Mobile, Alabama, Katey came to Auburn seeking higher education and has since gained so much more. She currently provides information technology support to all departments within University Outreach in the areas of web design and maintenance, computer hardware and software solutions, and publication/poster design for Outreach sponsored events and conferences.
Karen Rankin provides information technology support to all departments within University Outreach in the areas of database management, computer hardware and software solutions and website administration. Before joining University Outreach in 1994, she worked in the departments of Chemistry and Botany & Microbiology. Karen has degrees in Business Administration and Management Information Systems.
Sarah graduated from the University of Phoenix with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management in 2007 and a Masters of Business Administration in 2013. She began working in 1983 with Auburn University, Life Sciences department, where she worked in different administrative capacities. She joined the Office of Public Service staff in 1993, shortly after it was formed. Sarah's responsibilities include administration of office management procedures, finances, payroll, and human resources. She coordinates and supports the Continuing Education (CEU) Program, records/transcripts, and registrations.
Joyce Thomas-Vinson Program Administrator, Student Engagement and Service Learning
Joyce Thomas-Vinson earned a Bachelor's degree in English from the University of Alabama. She came to Auburn University in 1994 as a Program Developer with the Outreach Program Office. She transferred to the Auburn University Department of Psychology where she served for ten years as the support services coordinator for Project Uplift. Joyce joined the staff of the Office of Public Service in July of 2008. In addition to serving as the Coordinator for the AuburnServes network, she is the advisor for Campus Kitchens at Auburn and Circle K International.