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Distinguished UTC College of Business Students Honored by Chambliss Law Firm

2017 Stophel Scholars

Our firm honored the 2016-2017 John C. Stophel Distinguished Students from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga during the annual Stophel Scholars reception on Thursday, February 16. The reception offered the eight award recipients the opportunity to meet and engage with members of Chattanooga’s business community.

Sharing how the Stophel Scholars program impacted her, one of last year’s Stophel Scholars Meredith Beckenthal explained, “By awarding me the John C. Stophel Distinguished Student 2015-2016 Award, you have lightened my financial burden, which allows me to focus more on the most important aspect of school, learning. Your generosity has inspired me to help others and give back to the community. I hope one day I will be able to help students achieve their goals just as you have helped me.”

“These students' accomplishments span beyond the class room,” said Mike St. Charles, managing shareholder. “They excel in their activities for the university and the community. We are proud to recognize these outstanding individuals for their achievements and commitment to excellence. The reception is a great way to connect these students with local business leaders who will offer valuable practical insight and advice, as well as serve as real-life examples of the benefits of hard work.”

The Stophel Scholars program, now in its tenth year, aims to foster local talent and encourage promising students to build long-lasting mentor relationships with Chattanooga professionals. The John C. Stophel Distinguished Student Award recognizes students with high potential in the UTC College of Business who are emerging leaders. Award recipients are chosen based on their strong leadership, decision-making, and communication skills, as well as the presence of a high degree of self-motivation.

This year’s recipients include:

  • Korri Bowers, Accounting (Mount Juliet, Tenn.)
  • Madison Gaither, Accounting & Criminal Justice (Clarksville, Tenn.)
  • Jessica Henn, Master of Business (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
  • Mikaela Keene, Accounting & Finance (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)
  • Denryl Luna, Finance (Maryville, Tenn.)
  • Dillon Martin, Finance (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
  • Daniel Taylor, Entrepreneurship & Marketing (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
  • Diem Le "Selina" Vu, Accounting (Hixson, Tenn.)

“The UTC College of Business is proud to celebrate this year’s outstanding group of John C. Stophel Distinguished Students,” said Dr. Robert Dooley, Dean of UTC’s College of Business. “These young men and women are exceptional leaders who demonstrate a strong commitment to community service. We certainly appreciate the commitment Chambliss has made through the John C. Stophel Award to recognize their accomplishments. Not only is this event an opportunity to introduce them to the Chattanooga community, but it gives the students a chance to talk with potential mentors and future employers.”

We established an endowment at UTC in 2008 to honor the legacy of Mr. Stophel, a founding member of the firm. Mr. Stophel practiced law for more than 50 years, during which he led numerous civic, charitable and religious efforts to benefit the Chattanooga community. He additionally served as Chairman of the University of Chattanooga Foundation Board of Trustees from 2001 to 2004.

To learn more about the John C. Stophel Distinguished Student Award, visit

Read the WDEF article.

Read the Chattanoogan article.