2013 Distinguished Alumni Award Winner
Deborah Ariel Pagel, M.S. '92
Ms. Pagel is the Senior Organizational Development Advisor for Boeing Company, and has over 20 years of strategic business experience. She earned her Masters of Science in Management and Organizational Behavior in 1992 from Benedictine University. Pagel is a leader in her field, and has published a dozen articles focusing on organizational development, human resources, culture change and nuclear energy. Her article “Unleashing Passion and Potential: A Rally Cry for Customer Service,” was presented at the 2005 Organizational Development Network Meeting and was featured in the OD Practitioner. She has received a number of awards from the Organizational Development Institute, most notably, the 2006 Outstanding OD Project of the Year Award; and has been recognized by the Boeing Company for Human Resource Excellence Awards in both 2011 and 2013.
2013 Service Alumni Award Winner
Dana R. Wright, M.S. ’12, C10
Mrs. Wright is a visible supporter of the University who can be seen in videos promoting the Master of Science in Leadership program, or speaking to students as part of the Office of Alumni Department’s Get Connected panel. Wright is the 1st Deputy Chief of Police for the Cook County Sheriff's Office, who prides herself for being a role model for students and colleagues alike. She sits on the Associate Board of the Young Women’s Leadership Charter School, where she endeavors to utilize her experiences as an Executive Leader to mentor and coach other girls and women. Wright has received numerous awards for her leadership and was honored in 2012 by the Women's Institute for Global Leadership as an "Outstanding Student Leader.” She launched Wright Vision Consulting LLC in June 2013, a company she plans on building to provide individual and group executive and leadership coaching to the law enforcement community as well as corporate entities. This year, she was recognized as one of Benedictine University’s Top 40 Under 40 and Diversity Magazine’s Top 100 Under 50 Diverse Executive Leaders.
2013 Spirit Alumni Award Winner
Brian Walker, Political Science C96
Mr. Walker’s glowing enthusiasm and self-sacrificing nature is apparent in all aspects of his life. He is the Founder and CEO of AE Marketing Group, and an active member of the philanthropic and volunteer community. In July 2012 Walker was named a top fundraiser for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Program at Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago where he serves on the Young Associates Board. In addition, he volunteers regularly as a Child Life Specialist at the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at the hospital. Walker is a Patron Member of Chicago Ideas Week and participates with UCAN, Mercy Home for Boys and Girls, Imerman Angels and Bright Pink. He also donates his time to helping low-income area schools with marketing support, including Morrill School in West Englewood. His company has supported over a dozen community non-profits and charities since its inception and will soon launch the AE Foundation Group, a sister organization to manage a giving portfolio.
Each year at Homecoming, the Alumni Association presents three distinct and unique awards to members of the Benedictine University Alumni family.
Distinguished Alumnus Award: In recognition of outstanding achievement in a career field or personal endeavor.
Alumni Service Award: In gratitude for current or past service to the University and/or the Alumni Association. The award will be presented to an alumnus/a who has made significant donations of time and talent to Benedictine University.
Benedictine Spirit Award: Presented to an alumnus/a who exemplified the Benedictine values of service, hospitality, and dedication to a given cause in their personal and/or professional life.
All awards are open to alumni in good standing who have completed a minimum of 48 credit hours at St. Procopius College, Illinois Benedictine College, or Benedictine University. All award nominees must have graduated or last attended Benedictine at least ten years ago.
Nominations will be evaluated by a committee of the Board of Directors of the Alumni Association, which will make recommendations to the Alumni Association President and the Executive Director of University Development for final selection and notification.
Nominations for Homecoming 2014 are now open. Finalists not selected in a given year will be automatically submitted for consideration the following year. A permanent display of winners is in the Krasa Student Center.