Drury bestows seven honorees with 2018 Distinguished Alumni Awards

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., October 3, 2018 — Seven outstanding individuals were honored by Drury University at the 2018 Distinguished Alumni Awards ceremony held on September 28. The event was part of Drury’s annual Alumni Reunion weekend.

The Distinguished Alumni Awards were founded in 1951 to recognize individuals who have achieved professional and personal successes, shown their loyalty to Drury University, and demonstrated exemplary service to their community. Nominations are taken from the Drury community and the Alumni Council selects the honorees.

Left to right: Dwayne Holden, Thomas W. Lynch, Bruce Callen, Meg Myers Morgan, Thomas W. Stevens, Marilyn and Jim Buchholz.

Young Alumnus Award – Dr. Meg Myers Morgan ’05

Even as a student at Drury, Morgan knew she wanted to spend her life helping others. After three years at the United Way of Tulsa, she went on to earn both her Masters in Public Administration and Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma. She now serves at OU-Tulsa as the Director of the Public Administration/Nonprofit Management program, and co-director of the Center for Community Engagement. In 2016, Morgan was featured in a TEDxOU Talk called “Negotiating For Your Life,” which sparked her career as a professional development speaker and career coach.

Community Service Award – Thomas W. Stevens ’59

Stevens began his service in the United States Air Force as a tail gunner aboard a B-29, flying 27 combat missions during the Korean War. At 85-years-old, he continues to touch the lives of those he encounters as he honors the sacrifices of his fellow veterans. In recent years, he has established a chapter of the National Korean War Veterans Association (KWVA) in his residence of Overland Park, Kansas, and served for two years as president of the National KWVA organization.

Career Achievement Award – Dwayne Holden ’64

A graduate of the Breech School of Business, Holden left Drury with a degree in business administration. In 1977, he established a successful Springfield-based company, Custom Metalcraft, Inc. Starting with a staff of just three people, Custom Metalcraft has grown into an internationally recognized producer of specialty equipment for major companies in almost every industry. Holden currently serves as the company’s president and CEO, and his four area plants employ more than 160 people.

University Engagement Award – Dr. Thomas W. Lynch ’65

While Lynch’s life journey has taken him many places since graduating from Drury, he has never forgotten his alma mater. After earning his medical degree in 1969, Lynch went on to serve as a doctor in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, where he was stationed in locations ranging from Hawaii to San Francisco to West Point. Ultimately, he returned to Springfield where he recently retired after 41 years as a practicing dermatologist. Lynch’s commitment to Drury is evident in the various service roles he has held over the years, including President of the Drury Alumni Association, volunteer physician for the Panthers basketball team, and a 32-year member of Drury’s Board of Trustees.

Lifetime Achievement Award – Jim & Marilyn Bogle Buchholz ’57/’62

In the 55 years since Jim and Marilyn met at Drury, the two have shared a lifetime of adventure. Jim has more than 50 years of experience in investment counseling and institutional finance, beginning with his first job as Drury University’s Business Manager. At the same time, Marilyn pursued her love of learning and service, coaching debate and teaching high school biology. Later, she served as the Head of Health Services at Columbia’s Red Cross. In 1988, Jim co-founded Prime-Buchholz and Associates, Inc., a business that has grown into one of the nation’s leading investment consulting firms with branches in Boston, Atlanta, and Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Faculty/Staff Appreciation Award – Dr. Bruce Callen

Since his arrival at Drury in 1991, Dr. Callen has taught a variety of classes, led research projects, and helped innovate Drury’s math and science curriculum. Despite taking on administrative responsibilities at Drury in recent years, Callen continued to teach both upper-level physics and general education courses. He is also co-founder of the Drury Scholars Program, a summer program that supports the educational attainment of African American youth in the Springfield area. Through his leadership in teaching, advising, and curriculum, Callen has helped shape the Drury experience into what it is today.


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