Outstanding Alumni to be Honored at Homecoming

Sept. 1, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – Three Illinois Wesleyan University alumni will be honored this year at the annual Alumni Homecoming Lunch on Saturday, Oct. 9, at noon in the Shirk Center (302 E. Emerson St., Bloomington), as part of the 2010 Homecoming and All That Jazz activities.

Distinguished Alumni Award

Ron Ford

Ron Ford

Ron Ford, a 1978 Illinois Wesleyan graduate, will receive the Distinguished Alumni Award. Ford is a highly respected reconstructive hand surgeon with the Hand & Plastic Surgery Center. A resident of Grand Rapids, Mich., Ford is also known for his reconstructive work with burn patients. He was named Most Distinguished Alum by his medical school, The University of Illinois. Currently the Assistant Clinical Professor, Department of Surgery at Michigan State University (MSU), Ford oversees the clinical and didactic education of plastic surgery residents through their entire five-year program. He also serves as the Assistant Program Director of the MSU Plastic Surgery Residency Program at Grand Rapids Medical Education and Research Center, and is Chief of the Department of Plastic Surgery at St. Mary’s Mercy Medical Center in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Robert M. Montgomery Outstanding Young Alumnus Award

Rod Adams

Rod Adams

Rod Adams, a 1995 Illinois Wesleyan graduate, will receive the Robert M. Montgomery Outstanding Young Alumnus Award. A national experienced recruiting leader for PriceWaterhouse-Cooper, Adams was formerly their National Director of Diversity Recruiting. A resident of Chicago, Adams is in his fifth year of service on the IWU Accounting Advisory Board, working with the faculty to identify and recruit top accounting students and to improve the accounting curriculum and career preparation of IWU students. While at IWU, Adams was a member of the Phi Gamma Delta Fraternity (FIJI), captain of the varsity track team, and lettered in football. He continues to give back to University by hiring IWU students for internships and full time jobs. Adams is a board member of “Posse Chicago” which recruits, identifies and awards deserving high school students four-year, full-tuition leadership merit scholarships, and places in them in supportive multicultural teams. Adams played a key role in the creation of career exploration programs such as “Xplore,” which introduces non-traditional students to career mentors in the field of accounting in an interactive and engaging way.

Loyalty Award

Jerry Philpott

Jerry Philpott

Jerry Philpott, a 1959 Illinois Wesleyan graduate, will receive the Loyalty Award. While at IWU, Philpott was the business manager of the yearbook Wesleyana, served on the Student Senate Executive Board and was Student Senate treasurer his senior year. In 2002, he started a scholarship for students with financial need named in honor of his father. A resident of Mesa, Ariz., Philpott is a Hole Sponsor at the IWU Alumni Golf Outing every year and acts as the “connector” for alumni and current FIJI’s. Philpott has assisted with class reunions since his 20th reunion. Last year he co-chaired one of the most successful 50th reunions ever. The Alumni Office has always counted on Philpott to assist them in making calls encouraging attendance at alumni events. He makes it a priority to support IWU wherever he travels. Philpott retired from State Farm Life Insurance Co.® and is living in the Phoenix area. He helps gather the IWU alumni to the Phoenix Connection each year, bringing together more than 100 IWU alums every year.

For additional information, go to the Titan Pride website at www.titanpride.org.

Contact: Rachel Hatch, (309) 556-3960