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The SASSO Staff

Serving Student-Athletes
Since 1967

Student-Athlete Support Services Office (SASSO) at The Ohio State University is committed to a comprehensive program of academic, personal, and professional development for student-athletes.  We provide athletic academic counseling in conjunction with academic advising across the university to ensure seamless academic support. We collaborate with the Department of Athletics and other Ohio State University units and colleges to enhance academic, personal, and career development programming, and we partner with the community to bring service and career opportunities to student-athletes.

Under the direction of the Office of Academic Affairs, SASSO has an experienced and committed staff to help student-athletes navigate their way to graduation.  Additionally, we employ a large staff of tutors and proctors that assist with SASSO’s tutor and study table programs.

Together, we assist more than 900 student-athletes across 36 teams in areas of academic, personal, and professional support and development.

SASSO Leadership Team

David Graham
Director
e-mail

Hometown: Adel, GA
Years in SASSO: 4
Education: Savannah State University, B.S. Mathematics; B.S. Electronics Engineering Technology, 1992; Georgia Southern University, M.A. Sports Administration/Education, 1998.
Athletic Experience: Football, Savannah State University.
Favorite Quote: “The great challenge is to prepare ourselves to enter these doors of opportunity.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
Currently resides in: Dublin, OH
Family: Wife, Patricia; Four children, Samatha, Kindra, Johnathan, and Jasmine

Before joining the Buckeyes, David served as the director of the Student-Athlete Support Services Office at Miami University where he had numerous accomplishments: David co-authored the NCAA Choices Grant, and received the NCAA Division 1A CHAMPS Program of Distinction Award. A native of Adel, Georgia, David received Bachelor of Science degrees in Mathematics and Electronics Engineering Technology from Savannah State University (1992). He was also a student-athlete on the football team. He also received a Master’s Degree in Sport Administration/Education from Georgia Southern University (1998). David is a member of the inaugural class of the NCAA Leadership Institute for Ethnic Minority Males (2002), an NCAA initiative that helps to prepare future athletics administration leaders. He serves the NCAA as a member of the CHAMPS/Life Skills Advisory Committee and is a member of the NCAA Division I Initial Eligibility Waivers Committee. He and his wife, Patricia, reside in Dublin, OH, and have four children, Samantha, Kindra, Jonathan, and Jasmine.
 

 

 

Darin Meeker
Associate Director
e-mail

Hometown: Rayland, OH
Years in SASSO: 15
Team Assignments: Football, Men’s & Women’s Fencing, Degree Completion Program Coordinator
Education: Ohio University, B.A. Psychology, 1989; The Ohio State University, M.A. Sport Psychology, 1991; The Ohio State University, M.A. Counselor Education, 1996.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background: Football at Ohio University 1985-89; YMCA of Central Ohio for 2 years.
Best part of my job: The daily interaction with our student-athletes and seeing them graduate!
Favorite Quote: “Knowing others is wisdom. Knowing yourself is enlightenment.”
Currently resides in: Powell, OH
Family: Married 15 Years; Children: Nate is 11, Noah is 9, and Noelle is 6

 

Vicki Melnick
Associate Director
e-mail

Hometown: Milan, MI
Years in SASSO: 8
Team Assignments: Diving, Men’s Swimming, Women’s Synchronized Swimming, Women’s Rowing
Education: Michigan State University, B.A. History/Secondary Ed., 1991; Western Illinois University, M.S. Physical Education: Sport Management, 1997.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background: Played JV softball, and JV and Varsity basketball in high school; coached at MSU summer basketball camps; Asst. Coach for JV basketball team at alma mater in 1993; Assisted Athletic Advisor at WIU from 1994-96 while a graduate student; Full-time intern in Athletics Academic Advising at the University of Utah, 1996-97; Athletic Academic Advisor at the University of Northern Iowa, 1997-2002.
Best part of my job: Watching students succeed both in the classroom and on the playing field.
Favorite Quote: “Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing as gentle as real strength.” St. Francis De Sales.
Currently resides in: West Columbus
Hobbies: Reading, watching sports-themed movies, walking my dog, and singing along to the radio.

Ruth Staveley Bolzenius, PhD
Assistant Director – Academic Resources Coordinator
e-mail

Hometown: Upper Arlington, OH
Years in SASSO: 8
Education: Kenyon College, B.A. English, 1986; The Ohio State University, M.A. English, 1989; The Ohio State University, Ph.D. English, 1996.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background: Instructed freshman composition and basic writing at Ohio State. Coordinated the tutoring and learning skills program in the former University College at Ohio State.
Best part of my job: Working with students, developing programming that will enhance the student’s academic experience, and working with colleagues.
Currently resides in: Upper Arlington, OH (in the same house I grew up in).
Family: Husband, John, is a luthier (guitar-maker) and singer/songwriter; daughter, Louisa, is 4 and wants to be “in charge” when she grows up; Chihuahua, Lonestar.

Joann Coppler
Office Manager
e-mail

Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA
Years in SASSO: First
Best part of my job: Each day can bring something new.
Favorite Quote: “Live life to the fullest; you never know when it may end.” Unknown
Currently resides in: North Columbus
Personal Information: I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, traveling, watching football (Go Steelers! Go Buckeyes!) and Nascar.

 

Kim Doran
Assistant Director – Senior Learning Specialist
e-mail

Hometown: Rochester, NY
Years in SASSO: 3
Education: LeMoyne College, B.S. in Business Administration/Secondary Ed., 1999; LeMoyne College, M.S. Ed Special Education, 2003.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background: Before arriving at Ohio State, Kim taught a wide variety of business courses at Nottingham High School in Syracuse, NY. Also served as a volunteer assistant coach for the Syracuse University Softball program. Prior to teaching and coaching, Kim was a 4 year member of the LeMoyne Softball program.
Best part of my job: Watching our student-athletes be successful, both academically and athletically, and of course being a Buckeye.
Favorite Quote: “Never forget where you’ve come from.” My Dad
Currently resides in: Columbus, OH
Family: Most of the family lives in New York (Rochester and Waterloo); youngest sister lives in Washington, DC. I have a 6 year old black lab/beagle mix named Halie.

SASSO Office Support Staff

Anna Wilkinson
Assistant Office Manager
e-mail

Hometown: Sandusky, OH
Years in SASSO: 4
Education: The Ohio State University, B.S. Business Administration, 2005; The Ohio State University, MBA, 2011.
Best part of my job: Interacting with the student-athletes, they keep things interesting.  Each day brings something new. 
Favorite Quote: “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up.  The most certain way to succeed is to always try just one more time.”
Currently resides in: Hilliard, OH
Interests: I enjoy spending time with family and friends, reading, cooking, traveling, and shopping.

Katie Conlisk
Information Associate
e-mail

Hometown: Worthington, OH
Years in SASSO: 1
Education: John Carroll University, B.A., Communication, 2007
Professional Background: Underwriter, Motorist Insurance; Tutor/Proctor for SASSO
Favorite Quote: “When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.” Franklin D. Roosevelt
Best part of my job: Working with the student-athletes and helping to provide them with the tutoring and support that they need.
Currently resides in: Worthington, OH
Family/Interests: My parents live in Worthington with our dog, Josie. My brother is in Detroit completely oral surgery residency and hopes to return to Columbus. My fiancé is in the Ohio State dental school. We will be getting married in August, 2011. I love reading, working out and spending time with family and friends.

 

Athletic Academic Counselors

John Macko
Senior Athletic Academic Counselor
e-mail

Hometown: Toronto, OH
Years in SASSO: 26
Team Assignments: Football, Men’s and Women’s Golf, Men’s and Women’s Tennis, Degree Completion Program Coordinator
Education: The Ohio State University, B.S. English, 1977; The Ohio State University, M.A. Guidance and Counseling, 1978.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background: English teacher and Track Coach at Jefferson Junior High School from 1978-79; Guidance Counselor and Golf Coach at St. Charles Preparatory School from 1979-1982 and 1983-1984. Guidance Counselor at Mentor Lake Catholic School in Mentor Ohio from 1982-1983; Athletic Academic Counselor at Ohio State beginning in 1984.
Best part of my job: Working with student-athletes.
Favorite Quote: Whatever it takes.
Currently resides in: Worthington, OH
Family: Wife, Susan. Daughter, Hannah, is a Junior at The Ohio State University this year.

Allison Logan
Athletic Academic Counselor
e-mail

Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Years in SASSO: 6
Team Assignments: Men’s Baseball, Women’s Basketball, Women’s Ice Hockey, Men’s Wrestling, Board member-Women’s Varsity ‘O’ Club
Education: The Ohio State University, B.A., 1994; American University, M.A., 1996; The Ohio State University, Ph.D. candidate, Winter 2011.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background: Cross Country; Track and Field Student-Athlete at The Ohio State University
Best part of my job: Working with student-athletes on a day-to-day basis and getting to know each of them on a personal level and watching them grow in every facet of their life.
Favorite Quote: “The path to our destination is not always a straight one. We go down the wrong road, we get lost, we turn back. Maybe it doesn’t matter which road we embark on. Maybe what matters is that we embark.” Hall
Currently resides in: Clintonville, OH
Family: Partner, Kelsey Logan.  I enjoy running, hiking, reading, shopping, watching Ohio State athletic events, socializing with friends, and going to movies.

Chad McClellan
Athletic Academic Counselor
e-mail

Hometown: Findlay, OH
Years in SASSO: 5
Team Assignments: Basketball, Softball
Education: Florida State University, B.S. Business, 1989; Ohio University, MBA Marketing, 1990; The Ohio State University, Ph.D. Candidate Higher Education.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background: Played baseball at Florida State University.
Best part of my job: The relationships with the student-athletes, and witnessing the growth and transformation of the student-athletes during their college years is exciting.
Favorite Quote: Luke 9:23
Currently resides in: Columbus, OH
Interests: I enjoy spending time with my family, power-lifting, and reading Civil War history. I’m active in my church and pursuit of knowing Christ more intimately.

Tooti Snider
Athletic Academic Counselor – CHAMPS/LifeSkills Coordinator
e-mail

Hometown: Dayton, OH
Years in SASSO: 3
Team Assignments: Men’s & Women’s Gymnastics, Men’s Volleyball, Men’s Soccer
Education: University of Findlay, B.S. Sports Management, 2001; American Military University, M.S. Sports Administration, 2008.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background: 4 year player with the University of Findlay Women’s Soccer team; Has been coaching youth, high school, and college soccer for 13 years; Prior to Ohio State, Tooti worked at Wittenberg University as an assistant to the AD for 5 years.
Best part of my job: Working with student-athletes and seeing them grow and be successful.
Favorite Quote: “Ability may get you to the top, but it takes character to keep you there.” – John Wooden
Currently resides in: Hilliard, OH
Hobbies: I enjoy running, working out, coaching and traveling.

Ben Carignan
Athletic Academic Counselor
e-mail

Hometown: Claremont, NH
Years in SASSO: 3
Team Assignments: Field Hockey, Men’s & Women’s Lacrosse, Women’s Volleyball
Education: Western Washington University, B.A. Physical Education & Sport Studies: Sport Psychology, 1999; Miami University, M.S. Physical Education, Health & Sport Studies: Sport Behavior & Performance, 2001.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional Background:  United States Air Force, 1990-1994; Volunteer Asst. Coach, Western Washington University Women’s Soccer, 1998-99; Graduate Asst. Miami University Women’s Soccer & Miami Synchronized Skating, 1999-2001; Academic Advisor, Miami University Athletics, 2001-2003; Sport Psychology Consultant, 2001-2005; YMCA of Central Ohio, 2005-2008.
Best part of my job: Watching student-athletes grow more confident and go after their passion.
Favorite Quote:  “These are the days that must happen to you.”  Walt Whitman
Currently resides in: Columbus, OH
Family: Wife, Natalie.  Two sons, Leo, 4, and Max, 2. 

Lindsay Schutzler
Athletic Academic Counselor
e-mail

Hometown: Monterey, CA
Years in SASSO: 1
Team Assignments:  Men’s Ice Hockey, Women’s Soccer, Men’s and Women’s Pistol, Men’s and Women’s Rifle, Spirit Program
Educational Background: University of Tennessee, B.A., Psychology, 2007; University of California – Los Angeles, M.Ed, Student Affairs, 2009.
Athletic and Professional Background: Played softball at the University of Tennessee, 2003-2007; Assistant Softball Coach at California State University – Monterey Bay, 2007-2008; Assistant Counselor in Academic & Student Services in the UCLA Athletic Department, 2008-2009; currently plays for the Professional Fastpitch X-Treme (PFX) Tour. 
Best part of my job: Helping student-athletes achieve success both in the classroom and on the playing field, and preparing them for life after sports.
Favorite Quote: Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Mahatma Gandhi
Currently resides in: Columbus, OH
Personal: My parents live in Monterey, CA and my sister is a senior at the University of Arizona where she also plays softball. I have two dogs, a black lab named Cash and an Australian Shepherd mix named Knoxie. 

Academic Support Staff

Darrell Mayne
Football Academic Specialist
e-mail

Hometown: Lincoln Park, Michigan
Years in SASSO: 1
Education: Taylor University, B.S., Math, 1968; Eastern Michigan University, M.A., Counseling, 1974
Athletics/Coaching/Professional Background: Head Football Coach/Mathematics Teacher, Upper Arlington H.S., Counseling/Drug-Alcohol Prevention, Elyria H.S., Elyria West H.S.
Best part of job: The thrill of investing in young people and watching them gain confidence in their abilities and see their comfort zones expand.
Favorite Quote: “It’s not about me.” Rick Warren, author, Purpose Driven Life
Currently resides in: Hilliard
Personal: Love spending time with my wife, 2 daughters, and my 2 grandsons. Enjoy Buckeye Football, concerts, working out, TBDBITL, and anything Ohio State. Also enjoy reading about American history, and the ‘founding fathers’ in particular, and literature about achievement and performance.

Ben Scragg
Learning Specialist
e-mail

Hometown: Belpre, OH
Years in SASSO: 2
Education: Ohio University, B.S.Ed. Integrated Social Studies, 2005; The Ohio State University, M.A. Educational Psychology & Philosophy, 2009.
Professional/Coaching Background: Educator, Chicago Public Schools, 2005-2007; Asst. Coach, Boys Basketball, Ace Technical Charter High School, 2006-2007.
Best Part of Job: “The People. The Tradition. The Excellence.” Need I say more?
Favorite Quote: “I am what I am not yet.” Maxine Greene
Currently resides in: Clintonville, OH
Personal Information: Enjoys reading, playing music, and attending concerts, playing Wii with friends, and all things Chicago and Buckeyes.

 

 

Stephanie Reikes
Assistant Learning Specialist
e-mail

Hometown: West Palm Beach, FL
Years in SASSO: 1
Educational Background: University of Iowa, B.S., Biomedical Engineering, 2007; Florida State University, M.S., Financial Mathematics, 2009
Professional Background: Mathematics tutor for Athletic Support Services at Florida State University
Best part of my job: Watching students succeed academically and personally.
Favorite Quote: “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.”
Currently resides in: German Village, Columbus, OH
Personal: I enjoy dancing (tap, jazz, ballet), shopping, painting my nails, spending time with my friends and family, and watching the Hawkeyes, Seminoles, and Buckeyes!

Bradley Bethel
Reading and Writing Specialist
e-mail

Hometown: Holland, OH
Years in SASSO: First
Education: The Ohio State University, B.A., English, 2004; University of Toledo, M.Ed., English Education, 2010
Professional Experience: Licensed Language Arts teacher; taught middle school for two years before joining SASSO.
Favorite Quote: “Yo, Adrian!” Rocky Balboa
Best part of my job: Contributing to the academic success of the best student-athletes in the country and wearing OSU gear to work everyday.
Currently resides in: Clintonville, OH
Family/Hobbies: Married to Tracy Henderson – we have two dogs, Penny and Sophia. Hobbies include reading, writing, and sport.

Assistant Counselors

Megan Cable
Assistant Counselor
e-mail

Hometown: Worthington, OH
Years in SASSO: First
Education: University of Findlay, B.S. Mathematics and Secondary Education, 2007; University of Dayton, M.S. Applied Mathematics, 2009.
Athletic/Coaching/Professional experience: Basketball at St. Bonaventure and University of Findlay; Assistant Academic Coordinator/Compliance Intern at University of Dayton, 2008-2009; Mathematics instructor, Columbus State Community College, 2009-2010; Volunteer girls basketball coach at Worthington Kilbourne High School; Senior High Youth Group Advisor at Worthington Presbyterian Church.
Best part of my job: Getting to know the students and seeing them succeed in the classroom and at their sports.
Favorite quote: “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” Henry David Thoreau
Currently resides in: Hilliard
Hobbies/Family: I enjoy biking, walking, playing basketball and volleyball, listening to music and spending time with friends and family. My mom and dad live in Worthington, and my older brother, Aaron, teaches 8th grade science in Statesville, NC.

 

 

Valerie Weldon
Assistant Counselor
e-mail

Hometown: Massillon, OH
Years in SASSO: 1
Educational Background: Bowling Green State University, B.A. Classical Civilizations, 2002; Michigan State University, M.A. Student Affairs Administration, 2009.
Professional Background: Career Services Intern, Lawrence Technological University (Southfield, MI), 2007-2008; Student-athlete mentor, Michigan State University, 2008-2009.
Best part of my job: I enjoy working with and challenging student-athletes to surpass their own expectations and succeed.
Favorite Quote: “A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say ‘We did it ourselves.'” Lao Tzu
Currently resides in: Columbus, OH
Personal: I enjoy traveling, cooking/baking, and spending time with my family and cats. I am very excited to become an aunt for the first time sometime in June! I also like to watch baseball (Go Indians!) and basketball (Go Cavs!).