ALUMNI INK: Justice Crusader, Cybersecurity, and More

Alumni Ink highlights the latest book releases by Emory alumni

By Nick Sommariva 15C

Emory alumni authors have been busy sharing stories, insight, and guidance in their new books. Check out these great titles available on Amazon.

Crusader for Justice: Federal Judge Damon J. Keith

Amazon's book description states, "The Honorable Damon J. Keith was appointed to the federal bench in 1967 and has served as a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit since 1977, where he has been an eloquent defender of civil and constitutional rights and a vigorous enforcer of civil rights law.

Alumni Ink

In Crusader for Justice: Federal Judge Damon J. Keith, authors Peter J. Hammer and Trevor W. Coleman present the first-ever biography of native Detroiter Judge Keith, surveying his education, important influences, major cases, and professional and personal commitments. Along the way, the authors consult a host of Keith's notable friends and colleagues, including former White House deputy counsel John Dean, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, and industrialist Edsel Ford II for this candid and comprehensive volume."

Also featured in this book is alumnus Praveen Madhiraju 97C, Counsel at the Center for American Progress and the Enough Project and law fellow at the Public International Law and Policy Group. The chapter recounts Praveen's work with Judge Keith on Detroit Free Press v Ashcroft, which held that in the aftermath of 9/11, the government could not secretly deport immigrants. Madhiraju says, "Judge Keith's quote from the opinion, 'Democracies die behind closed doors,' has now become a staple for civil libertarians around the world and is chiseled in the frieze of a civil rights center in Detroit."

Cybersecurity Leadership: Powering the Modern Organization

Author Mansur Hasib 84G "provides practical leadership ideas for executives in any organization.

Technology drives the mission of modern organizations today. Almost every organization is an IT organization today -- even though we may think it is not. Therefore, technology and cybersecurity strategy has become synonymous with organizational strategy. A successful strategy is critical for organizations; it can mean the difference between staying in business and thriving or becoming extinct and irrelevant. Such a strategy can be a hallmark of distinction and a powerful driver of productivity and innovation in an organization. Gain powerful new ideas from the author's experience in guiding several successful organizations. The author's leadership philosophy, enterprise governance guide, reporting relationships, CIO/CISO roles, recruiting CIOs and CISOs, negotiating salaries, succeeding in the field, outsourcing, health information technology, leadership ethics and profitability, BYOD, and many other topics are discussed with plenty of anecdotes and examples. Each article is independent and can be read in any order the reader pleases. Each article provides practical insights from the author's experience leading technology and cybersecurity powered organizational transformations in a wide range of industries such as energy, education, biotechnology, and healthcare," says Amazon.

A History of Religion in 5 1/2 Objects: Bringing the Spirituality to its Senses

Alumni Ink

Author S. Brent Plate 99G tackles religious history in his latest book. As Amazon describes, "Humans are needy. We need things: objects, keepsakes, stuff, tokens, knickknacks, bits and pieces, junk, and treasure. We carry special objects in our pockets and purses, and place them on shelves in our homes and offices. As commonplace as these objects are, they can also be extraordinary, as they allow us to connect with the world beyond our skin.

"A History of Religion in 5½ Objects takes a fresh and much-needed approach to the study of that contentious yet vital area of human culture: religion. Arguing that religion must be understood in the first instance as deriving from rudimentary human experiences, from lived, embodied practices, S. Brent Plate asks us to put aside, for the moment, questions of belief and abstract ideas. Instead, beginning with the desirous, incomplete human body (symbolically evoked by “½”), he asks us to focus on five ordinary types of objects—stones, incense, drums, crosses, and bread—with which we connect in our pursuit of religious meaning and fulfillment."

Baptized in PCBs: Race, Pollution, and Justice in an All-American Town

Author Ellen Griffith Spears 03G 06G explores an important environmental issue in her latest book. From Amazon, "In the mid-1990s, residents of Anniston, Alabama, began a legal fight against the agrochemical company Monsanto over the dumping of PCBs in the city's historically African American and white working-class west side. Simultaneously, Anniston environmentalists sought to safely eliminate chemical weaponry that had been secretly stockpiled near the city during the Cold War. In this probing work, Ellen Griffith Spears offers a compelling narrative of Anniston's battles for environmental justice, exposing how systemic racial and class inequalities reinforced during the Jim Crow era played out in these intense contemporary social movements."

Community and In-Home Behavioral Health Treatment

Author Lynne Rice Westbrook's 90C Amazon book description shares: "Learn how you can cut down on rapport-building time, make your services accessible to more people, and put your consumers at ease during treatment by offering in-home and natural community-based behavioral health services. This book examines the impact that the environment can have on the comfort level, perception, ability to connect, and general mindset of consumers during treatment. Home and natural community-based services have the potential to help adults, youth, and children live in their own homes and natural communities with specific supports in place that can address their behavioral health needs. Lynne Rice Westbrook examines these treatment settings from the most restrictive to the least restrictive, and demonstrates how such services can be implemented to bring coverage to remote, rural, and underserved areas. Providing services in the consumer’s community allows children, youth, adults, and families to receive treatment they may not be able to access otherwise, and to stay together in their own community. This book provides a detailed map of the benefits, challenges and proposed solutions, and the steps professionals need to take in order to help change the tapestry of behavioral health provision one home, one healing at a time."

Do You Know how Amazon Smile Can Benefit Emory University?

AmazonSmile is a program operated by Amazon that lets customers enjoy the same wide selection of products, low prices, and convenient shopping features as on The difference is that when customers shop on AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the price of eligible purchases to the charitable organizations selected by customers. When making your purchases on Amazon, you can select Emory University and Amazon will donate a portion of your purchase price to that organization. To get started, log in to with your regular Amazon account and search “Emory University” in the “Pick your own organization” box. For program details, visit the AmazonSmile website.

Editor's Note: It's easy to give back to Emory - simply by shopping the same way you always do. Visit to learn just how easy it is to be philanthropic!

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Michelle Valigursky