December 12, 2016
NEWBURGH, N.Y. -
Two Mount Saint Mary College professors and two staff members
have been named Irish Education Top 100 honorees for 2016.
James Moran, associate professor of biology and chair of the
Division of Natural Sciences, and Susan Schulmerich, associate
professor of nursing and co-chair of the Mount’s School of Nursing,
were recognized for their outstanding contributions to the Mount,
to their students, and to their respective fields.
Joining them are Michael and Kathleen O’Keefe, husband and wife.
Michael is the executive director of operations and risk management
at the college and Kathleen is associate director of the Mount’s
Compiled by the Irish Voice newspaper, Irish Education 100
highlights top educators in America and the long standing Irish
commitment to excellence in education.
James Moran began his career at the Mount in 2008. He currently
teaches courses in microbiology, genetics, and immunology, and his
research interests include cancer immunotherapy and other cancer
therapies utilizing phytochemical agents. He also studies
host-microbe interactions in a mouse model of human Crohn’s
Moran graduated from SUNY Geneseo with a BS in biochemistry in
1995. He earned a Ph.D. in microbiology and immunology from the
University of Rochester in 2002. He then completed a postdoctoral
fellowship with the SPIRE Program at the University of North
Carolina at Chapel Hill, which included a one-year appointment as
visiting professor of biology at UNC-Pembroke.
Moran oversees the Mount’s long-running Summer Undergraduate
Research Experience, which pairs students with professors to
research a variety of subjects.
Susan Schulmerich spent many years in critical care, emergency
services, and the operating room as a staff nurse and first and
middle management in community and teaching hospitals.
She has experience in senior level management as executive
director of Montefiore Medical Center Home Health Agency in the
Bronx, and vice president of Elant in Goshen, N.Y.
Schulmerich has taught formally or in continuing education for
the better part of four decades.
She earned a diploma in nursing from Mount Vernon Hospital
School of Nursing, a bachelor’s degree from St. Thomas Aquinas, an
MBA and MS from Long Island University, and a doctorate in health
education from A.T. Still University. Her Irish lineage dates back
to the early 1800s, with Hortons, Dolans, and other Irish
Kathleen O’Keefe provides individualized internship coordination
for Mount students in the fields of communications, English,
business, and accounting.
She assists in student professional development; creates, plans,
markets, and executes campus wide workshops; and develops and
creates informational brochures for employers and students.
O’Keefe was promoted to associate director in 2012 and currently
supervises several staff members. She earned a bachelor’s degree
from Siena College, and an MA from Manhattan College.
She traces her Irish roots to counties Mayo and Cork through her
maternal and paternal grandmothers. She and her family regularly
visit Ireland, and she has been involved with the Village of
Montgomery St. Patrick’s Day parade since its inauguration there
She and her husband have three children, all of whom are or will
be Mount alumni.
During his Mount career, Michael O’Keefe oversaw operating
budgets in excess of $6 million. He chaired and co-chaired
commencement ceremonies hosting more than 4,000 guests for four
years, and co-chaired the presidential inauguration committee in
2015. He also researched, developed, and created the campus plan
for START-UP NY, an economic development stimulus program, one of
the first approved campus plans by a private college in New
Previously, O’Keefe was a member of the NYC Police Department,
where he rose to the rank of deputy inspector.
O’Keefe earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Siena
College, and a master’s in public administration from Marist
His paternal grandparents were from Co. Cork. His maternal
grandparents hailed from counties Cavan and Antrim. O’Keefe is also
a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians.