Living our thanks

Sep 12, 2008

President Stan and First Lady Angie Liberty hosted the Second Annual President's Appreciation Dinner Sept. 11, to say a heartfelt thank you to University supporters and friends.

"As we express our gratitude, never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words -- but to live by them." Kettering University President Stan Liberty quoted John F. Kennedy as he thanked both individual and corporate supporters of the institution at the Second Annual President’s Appreciation Dinner Thursday, Sept. 11, 2008.

The dinner, instituted by Liberty and his wife Angie, recognizes alumni, friends, corporate partners and community leaders, all of whom have contributed to the future success of Kettering.  

“I am proud of all that is being accomplished at Kettering, but what I am most proud of is the growing commitment within this institution to work collaboratively with many of you and your organizations as we build a new socio-economic future for this region,” Liberty said to those assembled. 

The 2008 honorees included:

Mrs. Frances Willson Thompson, who was posthumously recognized for her donation of more than $2 million to this campus, which established the Chair of Industrial History in 1983. The residence hall at Kettering University bears her name and honors her many contributions to this University and to this community. Representing her family were long-time friends Diane and John Lindholm. 

The late Bob Reiss, a 1960 graduate of Kettering/GMI and one of the country's first bio-engineers, and his family were recognized for their substantial financial support of the University over the years. Reiss was president and CEO of IMED Corp., ACS and IVT. Kettering Trustee and family friend John Urquhart, accepted the award on behalf of Reiss’ widow Claire.

Also honored were Bob ’64 and Marcy Oswald for their generous support, including establishing an endowed fund to support the study abroad program. The Oswalds also have supported Kettering’s pre-colleges programs AIM and LITE, and many other key programs at Kettering over the years.  Oswald was also recognized for his work with the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and the Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department, helping to strengthen programs and professional networks for these academic units.

In addition to individual supporters, industry friends of the University were recognized. They were the TRW and the Ford Motor Co.

TRW, one of Kettering's Top 10 co-op employers, was recognized for its commitment to the Cooperative Education program and for its financial support of the University. Since 1983, TRW has employed approximately 250 co-op students and generously donated more than $1 million in support of specialty programs. Adam Jeffries, of TRW, accepted the award on behalf of his company.

Ford Motor Company officials helped guide the University into a new identity in 1998 when it adopted the name of Kettering University. And it was the Ford Motor Company's generous gift of $3 million that helped rebuild Kettering's academic showpiece: The C.S. Mott Engineering and ScienceCenter. Ford is also a corporate partner, employing more than 500 co-op students. Philip Yuhasz '82, engineering director for Transmission and Driveline, at the Ford Motor Company and the Kettering key executive at Ford, accepted the award on behalf of his company.

Written by Dawn Hibbard and Patricia Mroczek