sealPurdue News

November 11, 2002

Purdue President's Council celebrates 30-year anniversary

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The Purdue President's Council - made up of 11,600 leading supporters of the university - celebrated its 30th anniversary Friday through Sunday (11/8-10) with a forum with the president, special back-to-class sessions, a dinner and awards.

Donald Roach, former council chairman, and J. Timothy McGinley, chairman of the Purdue Board of Trustees, received Distinguished Service Awards for their contributions to Purdue and the President's Council, which includes 7,074 households.

"President's Council members are the backbone of Purdue, generously sharing their gifts, diverse talents and an extraordinary commitment to Purdue," said Purdue President Martin C. Jischke. "Purdue presidents are extremely fortunate: We do not stand alone. We can rely on the help and devotion of our President's Council friends, and the council has had no better steadfast friends than Don Roach and Tim McGinley."

Roach, of Chartley, Mass., is an internationally recognized expert in the field of metrology, which are electronic measuring devices. He has been part of the President's Council since 1974. He is a 1952 graduate of the School of Mechanical Engineering, and Purdue awarded him an honorary doctorate in engineering in 1995. Roach served as chair of the President's Council from 1999-2001. He also served as co-chairman for the campaign to raise funds for the Purdue Class of '52 project, which raised money for scholarships and Purdue's new sculpture, "Transformation," unveiled in April in front of the new Visual and Performing Arts Building.

Roach has served on the Mechanical Engineering Dean's Advisory Board and has received numerous awards from Purdue, including Engineering Distinguished Alumnus in 1973, Outstanding Mechanical Engineer in 1991, Outstanding Industrial Engineer in 1997, President's Council Ambassador in 2001 and induction into the ROTC Hall of Fame this year.

McGinley, of Indianapolis, is the managing partner and principal for HMI, House Investments Securities Inc. A leading proponent of the university's strategic plan and fund-raising efforts, McGinley this fall helped the university secure the largest gift from an individual in its history, $52.5 million from Indianapolis civic and business leader William E. Bindley.

McGinley received his bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from Purdue and played varsity basketball for three years. During his basketball career he was the athlete with the highest scholastic average. McGinley earned his MBA from Harvard. He has served on the Purdue Board of Trustees since 1989.

Roach and five other council members also received Sagamore of the Wabash awards – Indiana's highest award bestowed by the governor – in recognition of their service to Purdue and the state of Indiana:

• Susan B. Butler, of Tucson, Ariz., retired managing partner of Accenture Ltd. Butler was the first woman professional consultant hired by Arthur Andersen in 1975 and became the company's first woman to be an equity partner. She served on the committee for Purdue's Vision 21 campaign that raised $320 million, the Krannert School of Management's just completed fund-raising campaign, and the Management Dean's Advisory Council. Butler is the incoming chairperson of President's Council and is a member of the steering committee for the seven-year Campaign for Purdue, which was launched in September to raise $1.3 billion for the university. Butler has endowed the Susan Bulkeley Butler Chair in Operations Management and helped endow the Accenture Chair in Information Technology for the Krannert School. She is a 1965 graduate from the Krannert School of Management and was awarded an honorary doctorate in management from Purdue in 1999. In 1990, Butler was the recipient of the Krannert Distinguished Alumnus Award.

• William K. Cordier, of Naples, Fla., retired president of Cordier Management LLC. Cordier graduated from Purdue in 1949 with a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering. He and his wife, Gail, established the Cordier Fellowship in Mechanical Engineering in 1999. Both are currently serving as President's Council chairpersons. In 1995 Cordier was awarded Purdue's Outstanding Mechanical Engineer Award. He served on the university's Strategic Planning Task Force in 2001 and received the Distinguished Service Award from the President's Council in 1998.

• Forest J. Farmer, of Troy, Mich., is president and CEO of Farmer Group Inc. and serves on the Campaign for Purdue Steering Committee. In the early 1960s he was tight end and captain on the Purdue football team and was named an All-American. Farmer received his bachelor's degree in 1965 from Purdue's School of Humanities, Social Sciences and Education (now called the School of Liberal Arts). He received the Distinguished Service Award from the President's Council in 1999.

• Ben and Maxine Miller, of Lafayette. He is the former president and CEO of TDS Telecommunication in Richmond, Ind., and served on the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee. The Millers served as co-chairs of the President's Council in 1998-99 and are serving on the Campaign for Purdue Steering Committee. In 1999 they endowed a Beering Scholarship and currently provide scholarship funds for the School of Consumer and Family Sciences. In 1959 both earned their bachelor's degrees from Purdue: his was in industrial economics and hers was in home economics.

Carolyn Gery, President's Council executive director, also was recognized Friday (11/8) for her 30 years of service to the council and her university development efforts. Gery has provided leadership for the President's Council since its inception in 1972.

Purdue President Emeritus Arthur Hansen called on a small group of alumni and friends to form the first President's Council to support quality and excellence in higher education. Members are composed of alumni and friends who give a minimum of $1,000 annually to the university. Within 10 years the council had grown to 6,000 households.

Gery is now charged with the goal of growing the council's membership to 8,000 households by June 30.

"Council members have always played a significant role in making Purdue a great institution through their generous support for both facilities and academics," Gery said. "This tradition has continued under the leadership of President Jischke, who is undertaking the most ambitious fund-raising campaign in Purdue's history."

Writer: Jesica E. Webb, (765) 494-2079;

Sources: Carolyn S. Gery (765) 494-2731;

Martin C. Jischke (765) 494-9708

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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