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Jim Ratigan

Rebels in Action — Spring 2008 (updated Spring 2013)

Degree: '78 BS Business Administration
Occupation: Associate vice president, UNLV Alumni Relations and executive director, UNLV Alumni Association
Affiliation: past president of Lee Business School Alumni Association, past president of UNLV Alumni Association Board
Family: daughter, Heather (Ratigan) Nepa ('04 BA History)
Hometown: Okinawa, Japan

Who/what at UNLV influenced you as a student?
When I went to school there, it was a very small school. My professors were very down-home, easygoing folks who helped me with the direction I wanted to go. (History professor) John Wright was a great influence. Wright Hall is named for him.
How do you find the time to volunteer?
If you want something badly enough, you'll find the time. Volunteerism is an area where we need to get more people involved. I am a firm believer in education, and I believe UNLV provides lifelong opportunities for young people. I'm interested in promoting that.
Expand on your involvement with the Lee Business School:
I worked with the department chair about four years ago to create the Management Information Systems (MIS) Advisory Board. We host events to help senior MIS majors identify job opportunities and to get prospective students to consider MIS as a major.
When people ask you about UNLV, what do you tell them?
We're a young university, but we've come a long way in a short period of time. We will become one of the better universities, if not the best, in the country. I may be a little biased, but when you look at the accomplishments over the last 50 years, you can understand my enthusiasm.
How do you share your Rebel pride?
Every opportunity I get, I try to talk to people about how they can get involved either as a student or an alumnus. I'm very bullish about that. There's something for everybody at the university. There's a great library, continuing-education opportunities, and athletics. I tell them to take courses, go to the library, or just hang out and interact with students.