Seattle University Online Business Faculty

The Seattle University online business faculty is comprised of innovative, ethical business leaders and thoughtful intellectuals to provide you with a well-rounded, deep, and transformative business education. They have risen through the ranks at Fortune 100 companies, helped grow small businesses from the ground up into formidable organizations, and published studies in high-impact academic journals.

Read more below about the dynamic online business faculty with whom you will learn, network, and grow in our Online MBA and Online MSBA programs.

Ajay Abraham, PhD

Ajay Abraham obtained a PhD in marketing from the University of Maryland, College Park. Prior to his PhD, he worked at multiple organizations including Microsoft and Wipro, in roles spanning marketing, evangelism, and technology. At Albers, Dr. Abraham teaches Marketing Management at the MBA level and Personal Selling and Introduction to Marketing at the undergraduate level. His research examines pricing in the context of surcharges with experiments, meta-analysis, and eye-tracking, and he is also interested in morality. He has published in the Sloan Management Review, the Journal of Marketing Research, and the Journal of Management for Global Sustainability, and has forthcoming work in the Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing.

Dennis Applegate, CPA, CMA, CIA, CFE, CFM

Dennis Applegate has taught finance, accounting, and auditing courses for local colleges and universities in the Seattle area for more than thirty years. His teaching interests include audit planning, risk assessment, and internal controls. Dennis served on the management team of Boeing Corporate Audit for twenty years, holding several management positions including senior audit manager and chief auditor. During his professional and academic career, he has authored nineteen articles on auditing and risk management published in various professional and technical journals, and currently serves on the editorial advisory board of the Institute of Internal Auditors.

Liesl Bohan, MBA

Liesl Bohan is an organizational consultant. She delivers leadership development and team-building trainings including programs on emotional intelligence. She also provides assessment and project management services to organizations. In addition, she serves as adjunct professor of management in the MBA program at the Albers School of Business and Economics at Seattle University. She worked for a number of years for Ernst & Young Consulting and AT&T Wireless Services in roles including finance and accounting, international business development, project management, and marketing. She holds a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Washington and received her MBA from Seattle University.

Nathan Colaner, PhD, MBA

Dr. Nathan Colaner is a senior instructor in the Department of Management, director of the Bridge MBA program and director of Albers’s Business Analytics program. Colaner’s PhD is in philosophy, with a focus on ethics and epistemology in general. But his subsequent MBA and business analytics degree led him to focus on three areas within applied ethics: organizational ethics, data ethics, and the ethics of machine learning and artificial intelligence. His recent research is on the ethical, technical, and epistemological aspects of machine learning, specifically regarding the creation of explainable artificial intelligence. As a teacher, he focuses on the ways that business organizations can create a nurturing environment for their employees, the ethical and legal implications of data use, and responsible business uses of artificial intelligence. As a consultant, he works directly with private and governmental organizations to implement ethical data and machine learning solutions.

Ekaterina Emm, PhD

Ekaterina Emm is an associate professor of finance at Seattle University. She holds a PhD and a master’s degree in finance from Georgia State University and an undergraduate degree from Boston University. Prior to joining the faculty at Seattle University, she worked as a research associate at the Triangle Census Research Data Center at Duke University. Her research focuses on corporate restructuring and risk management. Dr. Emm's scholarly work has been published in journals such as the Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, the Journal of Futures Market, and the Journal of Investing.

Jessica Ludescher Imanaka, PhD

Jessica Ludescher Imanaka is an associate professor in the Albers School of Business and Economics at Seattle University, where she holds a joint appointment in management and philosophy. She teaches Ethical Reasoning in Business, Ethics in Business, Business Ethics and Social Responsibility, Spiritual Business, and select philosophy classes at SU. Imanaka’s research has focused on corporate social responsibility, theory of the firm, political economy, sustainability, environmental justice, globalization, philosophy of technology, and Catholic social thought. Her papers have appeared in the Harvard International Review, Business and Society Review, the Independent Review, Environmental Ethics, the Journal of Catholic Social Thought, the Journal of Jesuit Business Education, Somatics Journal, the Journal of Management for Global Sustainability, and the International Journal of E-Business Research. Most recently, Imanaka has had articles published in the Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal and the Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics.

Ben Kim, PhD

Professor Ben Kim received his PhD, MBA, and BA from the University of Minnesota, University of Washington, and Seoul National University, respectively. Professor Kim’s teaching and research areas include corporate data management, data mining, e-business, and global business management. He has published articles in the International Journal of E-Business Research, the Journal of Systems Management, the Journal of Database Management, Expert Systems with Applications, Management Decision, Logistics Information Management, and many others, as well as numerous conference proceedings. Professor Kim has several chapters published in books such as Successful Software Reengineering, High-Performance Web Databases, and Data Management Handbook. He has conducted seminars and taught executive programs on corporate information systems and strategies for government agencies and businesses of the United States, Korea, Japan, and Europe. He held a position of Research Fellow at J.D. Edwards in Denver, Colorado. At Seattle University, he is a tenured full professor and was a recipient of Genevieve Albers Professorship. Internationally, Professor Kim is a Fellow of the Japan Society of Information and Management and also holds a visiting professorship at Heilbronn University of Germany.

James Lee, PhD

James Lee is a Genevieve Albers Visiting Fellow at the Albers School of Business and Economics. Prior to this, he served as an assistant professor at the State University of New York at Binghamton. He teaches primarily in the areas of business analytics, information systems, internet and web strategies, and IT management. His current research interests are business analytics on cloud computing and service oriented architecture. Dr. Lee's publications have appeared in such journals as the Communications of the ACM, the Journal of Information Technology, Industrial Management & Data Systems, International Journal of E-Business Research, and many more. He also actively consults with businesses on internet and web development.

Kevin Lundeen, MS

Kevin Lundeen is on the computer science faculty in the College of Science and Engineering. He teaches graduate and undergraduate classes in programming using Python, Java, and C++; data structures and algorithms; database internals; and parallel programming. He was a Managing Director at Goldman Sachs in New York, where he was a principal architect and developer of the core trading, risk management, and modeling environment there (SecDb) including development of the proprietary programming language (Slang), high-accessibility distributed database technologies, and graph-based parallel and distributed computing. He served on the FPML Standards Committee and was a principal in other finance industry initiatives. He has taught computer science and other subjects for over a decade and was a founder of Instituto Cervantes, an adult-education initiative in Montevideo, Uruguay. He currently consults in the finance and medical industries.

Greg Magnan, PhD

Greg Magnan, professor of operations management, joined Seattle University and the Albers School of Business and Economics in 1992. He teaches a variety of courses and topics at the undergraduate, MBA, and executive levels, including creativity and innovation, sustainability, operations and supply chain management, strategy implementation, project management, and leading responsible organizations. Dr. Magnan has received several teaching awards, including the 2014 Seattle University Alumni Distinguished Teaching Award and the Beta Gamma Sigma Professor of the Year in Albers in 2005, 2009, and 2012.

Greg earned his PhD from Michigan State University and his research is focused on supply chain relationships. He has published in numerous journals including Decision Sciences, the Journal of Supply Chain Management, the Journal of Business Logistics, Industrial Marketing Management, and Supply Chain Management: An International Journal. Recently, one of his publications received the Best Paper Award from the Journal of Supply Chain Management and another award from the International Journal of Logistics Management.

John V. Merle, MBA

Professor John V. Merle has been an instructor in the accounting department teaching Financial Accounting for the past 11 years. He has thirty years of experience in progressive financial, operational, and information technology management of manufacturing and consumer packaged goods environments for two Fortune 100 companies. During John’s tenure at Weyerhaeuser (1988 to 2008), he held the positions as lead of Accounting Transition Services for the Fine Paper Business Divesture, lead in SAP Financial Reporting, VP and CFO of Winchester Homes, Inc., and as director of finance for the Personal Care Products Division. He earned a BA from California State University, San Francisco and an MBA with Honors in International Business (Finance) from Golden Gate University.

Lawrence Morales, PhD

[Bio coming soon!]

Claus Pörtner, PhD

Claus C. Pörtner, PhD, is an associate professor of economics at Albers. He is also the current holder of the Robert D. O'Brien Chair of Business for 2018-2020. Pörtner previously taught at the University of Washington, Brown University, and Georgetown University, and has worked as a consultant for the World Bank in Washington, D.C., and Ghana. His research interests include household and population economics, development, and labor. Pörtner has published in the Review of Economics and Statistics, Demography, Journal of Development Economics, Southern Economic Journal, Economic Development and Cultural Change, Journal of Population Economics, Review of Economics of the Household, and the Journal of African Economies. He has taught graduate and undergraduate courses on development and population issues, quantitative methods, and microeconomics.

Joe Schlegel, MA

Joe recently completed a 27-year career with Verizon, all within the Sales and Sales Leadership divisions. He has experienced the joys and challenges of corporate life and mergers in the Fortune 50 footprint. After working for a large corporation, he stepped back to help a small business expand its presence in the construction management field. He has overseen the growth of this woman-owned business from less than $1 million in revenue to $8 million in five years, as well as seen CM Solutions increase in size from 5 to 30 people. His perspective of working successfully in both a large corporation and a small business offers unique insight and relatable war stories to the lesson plans in his business management courses. Joe enjoys fly fishing, golf, and the Green Bay Packers (much to the chagrin of his Seahawk-backer wife).

Geneva Sedgwick, JD, LLM

Geneva (Eva) Sedgwick teaches business law, law and analytics, negotiations and corporate responsibility. Her research interests rest at the intersection of human rights and innovative, entrepreneurial business and education models. Sedgwick has been recognized for her scholarly work in the areas of employee privacy law and social entrepreneurship, and is published in such journals as the Stanford Technology Law Review and the American Business Law Journal.

Erin Vernon, PhD

Erin Vernon is an assistant professor of economics at Seattle University. She teaches courses in the undergraduate, Bridge MBA, Professional MBA, Executive MBA, Online MBA, and Honors programs. Her area of research and specialization is health economics. Dr. Vernon has led numerous seminars on the topics of the economics of the US medical care system, the economics of childhood nutrition, hospital community benefits, and the economics of genetic screening. Her work is published in Applied Health Economics and Health Policy, the Journal of Applied Business and Economics, the Journal of Personalized Medicine, Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine, and the Journal of Child Nutrition and Management.

Prior to joining Seattle University, Dr. Vernon was an analyst at the Federal Reserve Board in Washington, D.C. She also has provided business modeling consulting services for multiple startup companies within the greater Seattle area. She earned her Ph.D. in economics from the University of Washington and a B.A. in finance and computer applications from the University of Notre Dame. A former collegiate student athlete, Dr. Vernon is also an active volunteer coach for multiple youth sports in her community.