2018 Award Winners: Outstanding Alumni Honored

The 2018 alumni award winners (back row, from left): Denis Nock, Aaron Granger, Harry Faulkner, Thomas Turner, John McDermott, with President Rock Jones and (front row, from left): Sheila Fagan Plecha ’84, Alumni Association Board of Directors president, with Patricia Belt Conrades, Linda Diamond, and Joe Diamond.

Each year during Reunion Weekend, the Alumni Association Board of Directors presents awards to selected alumni, usually those in their reunion years. The 2018 awardees honored on May 19 were:

Distinguished Achievement Citation

Andrew B. Busch ’83

Busch was recognized for his passion for global economics and his national reputation in international finance. He is the chief market intelligence officer for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in Washington, D.C., as well as a published author and regular contributor on CNBC.

Lucy Webb Hayes 1850

Hayes attended OWU at a time when women were not allowed to earn degrees. She was posthumously recognized for her role in defining what it means to be a social advocate and for her commitment to women’s equality. After transferring to the Cincinnati Wesleyan Female College to study subjects from Geology to Music, Hayes married Rutherford B. Hayes and became the first presidential spouse to have a college degree, as well as the first to be called “first lady.”

Doug Gordin ’78

Gordin was recognized for his national achievements as a collegiate golf coach and leader in the sport. Gordin led Georgia Southern College and Florida Southern to multiple conference championships and Florida Southern to five team national championships. He has won National Coach of the Year four times and has been inducted into multiple halls of fame. His father, Richard “Dick” Gordin ’52, was the legendary men’s golf coach at OWU (see obituary on the Fall 2018 Class Notes page).

Honorable John E. McDermott ’68

McDermott was recognized for his 37 years as a trial lawyer, focusing on complex business litigation and litigation involving public entities, and for his position as the federal magistrate judge of U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

Thomas P. Turner ’83

Turner was recognized for his significant contributions to aviation safety and pilot education, as an instructor and author. He served as an officer in the Air Force, and has served as the president of Mastery Flight Training since 1994. Since 2003, he has served as executive director at ABS Air Safety Foundation. He possesses multiple instructor and pilot certifications and is a consultant to the Federal Aviation and National Transportation Safety Board in Washington and numerous aviation industry groups.

Alumni Award

Patricia Belt Conrades ’63

Conrades was recognized for her remarkable involvement, championing, and investment in OWU. She majored in physical education and was involved with the OWU Senate and The Transcript. At the age of 48, Conrades earned a nursing degree from Norwalk Community College and went on to serve as a volunteer nurse. Her gifts, with her husband George Conrades ’61, have changed the landscape of OWU both physically, with structural additions to campus, and programmatically. Her father, Arthur Belt ’34, sister Nancy Muldoon ’60, and two of her five children, Anna Conrades ’03 and Laura Wilson ’88, also attended OWU.

Harry Faulkner ’63

Faulkner was recognized for his tireless service to OWU. He is co-chair of the OWU Honorary Coaches program, a Team OWU volunteer, an Annual Giving volunteer, and a 55th reunion committee member, among other past volunteer roles. He is a partner at Faulkner, Garmhausen, Keister and Shenk, where he specializes in real estate development, estate planning, and probate and banking. His father, Walter ’35, uncle Thomas ’28, brothers John ’68 and William ’72, and his son J.D. Faulkner ’93 all attended OWU.

Aaron L. Granger ’93

Granger was honored for his roles as a member of the OWU Board of Trustees, chair of the House of Black Culture Advisory Committee, and for his work with students. Granger began a new position in June as Head of Legal for Williams Lea Tag America, a global marketing and communications provider. He is an A/PART volunteer and a Multicultural Affairs student mentor, and has served on the Alumni Board and as a Career Services volunteer.

Denis B. Nock ’58

Nock was recognized for his commitment to the postgraduate careers of students through his work with the OWU Office of Career Services and for supporting the development of OWU’s externship program. He is senior equity analyst at Colorado Financial Management. He was director of the Deming Center Entrepreneurship Program at the University of Colorado and past president of the Boulder Chamber of Commerce. Nock is a founding member of the President’s Circle, a member of the Tower Society, and was a member of the Woltemade Advisory Board. He’s married to Judith Mahoney Nock ’60.

Young Alumni Award

Matthew Laferty ’08

Laferty was honored for his work in international social justice through Christian ministry and mission work. After graduating cum laude with University honors, he earned his master’s degree from Yale Divinity School. He worked with an ecumenical ministry in Moscow, and has served as a pastor of the English-speaking United Methodist Church in Vienna since 2015. He works extensively with refugees, public health programs, and in preventing human trafficking.

Marija Ignjatovic Bateman ’03

Bateman was recognized for her leadership in international humanitarian and environmental efforts. She has worked as a special assistant to the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq and supported Princess Katherine of Serbia’s efforts to develop the Serbian health sector through the Lifeline Humanitarian Organization. Since 2014, Bateman has been supporting the United Nations response to the Syrian crisis and the conflict in Yemen.

Honorary Alumni Award

C. Joseph Diamond And Linda Diamond

Joe and Linda Diamond were honored for their endless dedication to and support of the Delaware community and OWU. They established the C. Joseph and Linda Diamond Endowed Scholarship for students from the Delaware County area going into the arts, sciences, or humanities through an estate commitment in 2016. They are members of the Bishop Backers Executive Committee and Tower Society. The Diamonds were awarded the Town-Gown Award by the Ohio Wesleyan Athletic Department in 2017 in recognition of longstanding relationships with and outstanding support of Ohio Wesleyan student-athletes and athletic programs. Linda was recognized as 2001 Citizen of the year by the Delaware Area Chamber of Commerce. Joe is a founding member and past president of Main Street Delaware and serves on its Design Committee. He is also a founding member of the executive board of the Strand Theatre and Cultural Arts Center and volunteers as the facility manager for the organization.

Return to the Fall 2018 OWU Magazine