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Learning Center Experience
By Jenna Shields
Women’s History Month in March, we celebrate Professor Karla Drenner, PhD, a true modern-day Renaissance woman.
undergraduate and graduate public administration courses at Kaplan University. She
also owns her own environmental and safety consulting firm, and has served as a
state representative in Georgia for 14 years.
addition, Dr. Drenner has earned five degrees, run fifteen marathons, authored a book, and has probably seen more movies
than all of the judges for the Academy Awards combined!
She is an
inspirational leader, and a great success story of a woman in public service.
has quite an impressive educational background. Her degrees include a PhD in
Philosophy, Public Policy Analysis and Administration, a second PhD in Occupational Safety and Health, a Master of Science in Environmental
Studies, a Master of Business Administration, and a Bachelor of Science in Health
a career in environmental health and safety, and has worked with several leading
chemical, pharmaceutical, and transportation companies leading their safety and
environmental efforts. Dr. Drenner now owns her own environmental consulting
firm, Timber & Stone Corporation (www.timberandstonecorp.com), which focuses on
fundamental business and government issues that organizations across various
industries should address in order to help them thrive, such as managing risk,
increasing revenues, and controlling cost.
of these accomplishments, Dr. Drenner had a political epiphany. She felt a
calling to enter public service.
Raised in a
political family, she grew up working on campaigns in West Virginia and learned
a bit about the political process. But it wasn’t until later in her career that
she was drawn to it.
decided that it was time for me to serve,” said Dr. Drenner. “My family thought
I was nuts! I didn’t know very many people in Georgia as I had only lived there
for four years. While I did earn one of my doctorates in public policy and
administration, I really had no idea how to run a campaign to get elected. I
just dove right in and never looked back!”
beat the 4-year incumbent and has served as the state representative in
Georgia’s District 85 for 14 years. She has been reelected seven times. Her
platforms include environment, energy, and economic development. Some of her
major accomplishments include:
helping people, and just like my Kaplan University students, my constituents
are like a family to me,” Dr. Drenner said.
began teaching more than a decade ago, and really enjoys working with her
Kaplan University students.
that an education from Kaplan University is so valuable. All of our professors
are experts in the field, and most are out there working in the field, just
like me. I’ve been there, I’ve done it, and I will tell you all of the gritty
details, including the mistakes along with the successes. I wish I had more
professors like that when I was earning my degrees and starting my career!”
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