Nominated to fame

Jun 23, 2006

Kettering University is honored to nominate five more alumni to the National Commission for Co-operative Education Hall of Fame.

One saved a piece of American rock 'n roll, the others are helping some of the country's best companies run more efficiently. And the last is a leader in promoting co-operative education in Michigan. Five honorees were nominated by Kettering University and will be part of the ceremonies when the National Commission for Co-operative Education celebrates its 2006-07 Co-op Hall of Fame later this year. The honored alumni are:

Henry Juszkiewicz
Class of 1976
Kettering University
Mechanical Engineering

Henry Juszkiewicz, chairman and CEO of Gibson Guitar Co. of Nashville, Tenn., helped save a piece of American rock 'n roll. Juszkiewicz and his partner, David Berryman, acquired Gibson Guitar as it was on the brink of closing and turned the company around by focusing on innovative marketing techniques. Today, Gibson enjoys worldwide respect among music industry leaders, and boasts a 20 percent annual growth over the last decade. He earned a bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering at Kettering/GMI in 1976 and an MBA at Harvard University. During his career, he served as a product manager for GM's Delco Products division and later joined the New York firm of Neiderhoffer, Cross and Zeckhauser Inc., a pioneer in middle-market deals. He left in 1981 and with two former Harvard classmates acquired Phi Technologies of Oklahoma City and turned Phi into a highly profitable company. He and his partner acquired Gibson Guitar in 1986.

Grace D. Lieblein
Class of 1983
Kettering University
Mechanical Engineering

Grace D. Lieblein, vehicle chief engineer-Front Wheel Drive Trucks for Product Development at General Motors in Detroit, is the highest-ranking Latina at GM and the company's first Latina vehicle chief engineer. She began her GM career as a Kettering co-op student at General Motors Assembly Division in Los Angeles. She earned a bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering in 1983 from Kettering/GMI and has a master's degree in Management Materials/Logistics from Michigan State University. She is the champion of the GM "Women in Engineering" initiative and a GM Hispanic Initiative Team board member. Recognitions and awards include: Hispanic Business Magazine Top 50 Businesswomen, Hispanic Engineer & Informational Technology Magazine one of the most powerful Hispanics in business and technology, Professional Achievement Award from the Hispanic Engineering National Achievement Awards Conference (HENNAC), Automotive News Top 100 Women in the Auto Industry, and 2006 Urban Wheels Awards Latino Executive of the Year.

Armen G. Oumedian
Class of 1949
Kettering University
Industrial Engineering

The word that describes this alumnus is dynamic. Armen Oumedian gives unstintingly of his time and talents in participating in multiple activities to support Kettering University, providing leadership and inspiring his fellow alumni to contribute time and financial support. In addition to providing multiple scholarships and a future estate gift, he created a plan to involve alumni in recruiting students and companies to employ Kettering co-op students. He developed a passion for the many opportunities in industry provided through his 'real world co-op education' at Kettering. He spent 10 years at General Motors, 32 years at Rapistan Inc., retiring at 65 years old as a senior vice-president. Then he and four associates became managers and part-owners of a company with $40 million in sales. Twelve years later, he retired again when his company, Pinnacle Automation Inc.-having grown to seven companies with sales at $350 million and employing 2,600-was sold. He then turned his attention to supporting the co-op program at Kettering.

Derica W. Rice
Class of 1988
Kettering University
Electrical Engineering

Derica W. Rice is the senior vice president and chief financial officer for Eli Lilly & Co. in Indianapolis, a company using medicine and information to bring relief to some of the world's most urgent medical needs. Before assuming the position of vice president and controller for Eli Lilly in 2003, he was the general manager of Lilly's United Kingdom affiliate, executive director of finance for European operations, and director of finance for Lilly Canada, among others. Rice is noted for his sound decision making and strong record as a leader on the company's senior leadership team, policy and strategy committee, operations committee and diversity leadership council. He came to Kettering/GMI as the salutatorian of his high school class and credits his family, teachers and the life lessons he learned in his neighborhood in Decatur, Ala., for many of his keys to his success. Rice is a 1988 graduate of Kettering/GMI with a bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering. He also earned an MBA from Indiana University.

Karenann Terrell
Class of 1985
Kettering University
Electrical Engineering

Karenann Terrell, chief information officer for Baxter International Inc., Deerfield, Ill., has global responsibility for information technology supporting all Baxter's businesses worldwide, including manufacturing, science and technology, and supply chain operations. She was most recently vice president and CIO-Chrysler Group and Mercedes-Benz North America at DaimlerChrysler Corp., responsible for IT management. She was also director of Managed Services & International Process Systems and director, eConnect Platform for DaimlerChrysler, director of E-vehicle Activities, e-GM at General Motors, and held various assignments in Advanced Engineering, Product Engineering and Manufacturing. She earned a bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering from Kettering/GMI in 1985 and later earned a master's in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University. Terrell is a board member for Women in Technology International (WITI). Recognitions include: Automotive News' 100 Influential Women in the Automotive Business, Internet Week's 2001 Top 100 Web Innovators, 2001 Women in Technology/Office Depot's Businesswoman of the Year, and the Management Achievement Award from Kettering University.

Written by Pat Mroczek, Dawn Hibbard and Gary Erwin
Contact: Pat Mroczek
(810) 762-9533