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Washburn University Alumni Fellows

The Alumni Fellows program recognizes alumni each fall who have distinguished themselves in their careers. Fellows are invited to campus to interact with students and faculty in the classroom and other academic settings and then honored during an awards luncheon. Each spring, faculty and staff submit nominations for Fellows to their respective dean. A fellow is selected from the School of Applied Studies, School of Business, School of Law, School of Nursing and Washburn Institute of Technology. Because of its size, the College of Arts and Sciences selects up to three Fellows.

The 2018 Alumni Fellows Luncheon was held on Nov. 9, 2018. Check back in the summer of 2019 for information about 2019 Alumni Fellows.

 

The 2018 Alumni Fellows

 

College of Arts and Sciences

Ann McIntosh Adrian, b ed '67, educational consultant

Acceptance speech

Ann AdrianAnn Adrian was raised in Clay Center, Kansas, and lives in Newton where she is an educational consultant, currently with Harvey County Special Education Cooperative. She coordinated gifted education in the Newton School District for 21 years before retiring in 2005. She co-authored the Kansas State Department of Education “Effective Practices for Gifted Education in Kansas” in 2001. She was president of the Kansas Association for the Gifted, Talented and Creative in 1999. Her service to Washburn includes volunteering as a Washburn University Alumni Association and Foundation trustee and member of the board of directors. She is past president of the Washburn Alumni Association board of directors. In the Newton community, she serves as president of the Newton Public Library board of trustees, is a past president of the Newton Women’s Community Fund and is active in her church. She was named Newton Area Woman of the Year in 2014.

How has Washburn contributed to your career and life: I not only credit my career to Washburn, but also my character and values. Washburn is my family’s legacy, and I treasure the lifelong relationships I have developed at Washburn. I met my husband of 52 years while we were students at Washburn.

 

College of Arts and Sciences

Tawanna A. Black, bpa ’00, founder and CEO, Center for Economic Inclusion

Acceptance speech

Tawanna BlackTawanna Black was born in Arkansas City, Kansas, and lives in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, where she is CEO of the Center for Economic Inclusion, a cross-sector organization aimed at strengthening the region’s civic infrastructure to catalyze an inclusive, growing economy that works for everyone in the Minneapolis-St. Paul region. They are dedicated exclusively to achieving regional prosperity through human capital, economic development, and transportation and access. She was honored as one of the nation’s top 25 disrupters closing racial gaps in 2016 by Living Cities. She was appointed to a Bush Fellowship by the Bush Foundation in 2014. She was given several local honors including the Minnesota Business Magazine (Real) Power 50 list in 2017. Black is a trustee with the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota and an advisory board member of Minnesota Federal Reserve Bank Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute.

What is your best Washburn memory: There are so many, but I’ll sum them up in three words: Kappa Alpha Theta. The day I joined started many lifelong friendships that have fed my life and career over the last 23 years. I am constantly reminded of the friendships and sisterhood that gave me the greatest foundation as I began my journey at Washburn.

 

College of Arts and Sciences

Gilbert E. Galle, ba ’70, retired

Acceptance speech

Gilbert GalleGilbert Galle grew up in Topeka and lives in Pinehurst, North Carolina, where he is retired after careers in wealth management and sports marketing. He retired in 2008 after 20 years with WEDGE Capital Management LLP where he was a managing general partner and portfolio manager. His investment career included time with Lehman Bros, Bear Stearns and Rotan Mosle. He started his career on the management committee of the Astrodome Corporation, the owners of the Houston Astros and the Astroworld Entertainment Complex. He is current chair of the board of trustees of Thompson Child & Family Focus, an Episcopal children’s agency serving children and families in North and South Carolina, and past chair of the St. Martin’s Foundation. He became a Washburn University Alumni Association and Foundation trustee in 2004 and was chair of the board of directors from 2010-12. He received the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Service Award in 2015 and was honored with the Garvey Trustee Award in 2018.

How has Washburn contributed to your career and life: Washburn gave me an exceptional education which in turn gave me the opportunity to make something of myself. The classroom rigors in the College of Arts and Sciences demanded critical thinking of all students, which provided the discipline we needed to be successful in whatever endeavor we chose to pursue after graduation.

 

School of Nursing

Diane Glynn, bsn ’80, jd ’85, practice specialist, Kansas State Board of Nursing

Acceptance speech

Dianne GlynnDiane Glynn grew up in Merriam, Kansas, and lives in Topeka where she has been a practice specialist with the Kansas State Board of Nursing since 1991. She advises nurses and health care businesses on what is allowed in nursing practice and investigates and disciplines nurses and others who are violating the practice laws of Kansas. She was a registered nurse at Stormont Vail Health 10 years, including while earning her law degree at Washburn. Her law career includes work in her own private practice, as an associate attorney for Tilton, Dillon and Beck and as assistant attorney general. Glynn is a guest lecturer for the Washburn School of Nursing and was an adjunct professor in the criminal justice and legal studies program. She is a docent with the Topeka Zoo, a Shawnee County Extension master gardener and a member of Service to Mankind.

What is your favorite Washburn memory: When I took my licensure exams for nursing and law, I wondered if my professors had a hand in writing the questions. I knew and was comfortable with all of the subject matters. Walking away from those exams, I understood and deeply appreciated how incredibly talented and knowledgeable our Washburn faculty members were and what a fine job they had done to prepare me for the work ahead.

 

School of Law

Jalen O’Neil Lowry, jd ’87, associate dean for student affairs, Washburn University School of Law

Acceptance speech

Jalen LowryJalen O’Neil Lowry grew up in Glasco, Kansas, and lives in Topeka where she has been associate dean for student affairs at Washburn University School of Law since 2011. She advises students, supervises student organizations, and plans student orientation weeks and professionalism training. After graduating law school, she clerked first for Justice Harold Herd, ba ’41, jd ’42, and later for Chief Justice Robert Miller of the Kansas Supreme Court. She joined the law faculty in 1991. She has volunteered her time in numerous ways to benefit the legal community, including serving on the Kansas Board of Continuing Legal Education since 2013.

What is your favorite Washburn memory: Each year, law students put together a Bar Revue to showcase great talent and humor as they gently mock faculty and staff. For this year’s event, the Washburn Law Democrats and Washburn Law Republicans are teaming with the Washburn Law Pro Bono Society to put on the event, titled “The Red Blue Bar Revue.” That tells you right there why I love working with our students every day and why working at Washburn has brought me so much joy and optimism about the future.

 

Washburn Institute of Technology

Robert Nall, ba ’90, Tech attendee, president and CEO, Heartland Tower, Inc.

Acceptance speech

Robert NallRobert Nall grew up in Topeka and now lives in both Topeka and Malibu, California. He is president and CEO of Heartland Tower, Inc., a telecommunications company that oversees more than 100 wireless communications sites. He is CEO of Heartland Broadcasting, LLC, which operates TV25, with three over-the-air TV stations available to 2.6 million people in Northeast Kansas. The stations were honored by the Kansas Association of Broadcasters and the National Association of Broadcasters. He is also a corporate consultant with Gerson Lehrman Group, providing consultation on telecommunications industry trends. Prior to attending Washburn, he volunteered with the Mission Township Fire Department and the Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office and took courses at Kaw Area Vocational Technical School – now Washburn University Institute of Technology. In 2001, Nall created a Washburn communications studies speech competition, the Nall Speak Off and the scholarships associated with it, through a gift to Washburn. Among his other philanthropy initiatives, Heartland Tower donates tower usage for emergency communications and he previously provided free photography services to Topeka non-profits.

How has Washburn contributed to your life and career: That’s easy! I feel as if Washburn isn’t really an institution, but rather a family that I will be a part of forever.

 

School of Applied Studies

Kimberly Rieger, mcj ’03, chief U.S. probation officer, District of Maine

Acceptance speech

Kimberly RiegerKimberly Rieger is from Tulsa, Oklahoma, and currently lives in Portland, Maine, where she started in April 2018 as the chief United States probation officer for the District of Maine. The agency is the investigation and law enforcement arm of the federal courts. She serves the federal courts as a national trainer and subject matter expert and has received commendation for her work with the agency. She previously served the District of Kansas and Western District of Oklahoma as deputy chief United States probation officer. In the District of Kansas, she was an officer, substance abuse and mental health treatment specialist and a supervisory United States probation officer. She is a graduate of the Federal Judicial Center’s Leadership Development Program and is featured in the textbook, “Probation, Parole, and Community-Based Corrections.” She has served on numerous boards and is active as a Delta Gamma alumna at the University of Oklahoma, where she earned her undergraduate degree.

How has Washburn contributed to your life and career: An advanced degree is crucial to compete for federal law enforcement positions and advancement within your agency. I would not be where I am today without my master’s degree from Washburn University.

 

School of Business

Mark E. Yardley, bba ’77, president and CEO, Federal Home Loan Bank of Topeka

Acceptance speech

Mark YardleyMark Yardley was born in Topeka and lives in Berryton, Kansas. He is president and CEO of Federal Home Loan Bank of Topeka, an organization he has been with since 1984. He has held positions as director of internal audit, chief financial officer, executive vice president and chief risk officer. He became president in 2017. Prior to FHLBank, he worked for a national public accounting firm for seven years. He is a board member at-large for the Greater Topeka Partnership Chairs Council and a trustee for the University of Kansas Health Systems St. Francis Campus. He has been treasurer of Topeka Bible Church for more than 20 years. Yardley has been a Washburn University Alumni Association and Foundation trustee since 2014 and became a member of the board of directors in 2015.

How has Washburn contributed to your life and career: My accounting and business classes prepared me to pass the CPA exam on the first attempt and prepared me for the seven years in public accounting, which really set the stage for my career at FHLBank Topeka. Additional courses outside of business and accounting taught me to think independently and reason rationally. In public accounting, these were particularly important as no two clients are exactly alike.

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Phone: 785.670.4483
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