dcsimg 2013 Award Recipients

2013 Award Recipients

Mother Clarissa Dillhoff Award for Distinguished Achievement in Mentoring

Gina Fleming ʼ93

Gina Fleming graduated with a bachelor of arts in elementary education, over the past 20 years has dedicated her career to impacting children and her peers through education and leadership. She currently serves as the assistant superintendent for the Archdiocese of Indianapolis. She has taught and been a principal in both public and private K-12 education, spending six years as principal of Holy Name Catholic School. Along the way Fleming has earned numerous awards and recognitions for being an influential educator in Indiana.

Fleming, leading by example, also focused on continuing her education earning a master of art in education from Indiana Wesleyan University and a master of art in K-12 building administration from Butler University.

Fleming always recognized and appreciated those who had a positive influence on her life. She was shaped by many mentors during her time as a student at Marian University, and attributes much of who she is today to their influence.

St. Francis and St. Clare Award for Distinguished Achievement in Peace and Social Justice

David Bethuram ʼ78

David Bethuram graduated in with a bachelor of arts in religious education. He continued his educational journey by earning a master of art in personality theory and religion at Butler University, and a master of ministry from Christian Theological Seminary. He has held various roles at the Archdiocese of Indianapolis since 1997, and currently is the executive director for Catholic Charities and Family Ministries.

He attributes his time at Marian University by saying, “Marian instilled in me a sense of duty that I should always seek to enlighten, help, and serve others.” He has demonstrated a commitment to sharing his knowledge by serving on numerous community boards.

Bethuram participates in the placement of Marian University students for internships and service opportunities in Catholic Charities agencies, and has served as a facilitator for at the Marian University Retreat for Busy People. He embodies and lives the characteristics of the saints we honor in this award.

Donald A. Fleming Award for Distinguished Professional Achievement

Earl Brinker ʼ74

Earl Brinker currently serves as the president of Irving Materials, Inc.(IMI), one of the largest producers of concrete in the United States. After graduating from Marian University with a degree in accounting, Brinker worked for 10 years with Stokely Van Camp, while also obtaining an MBA from Butler University.

Prior to his role as president of IMI Brinker served as the chief financial officer (CFO) of Irving Materials for 15 years. Brinker also served 10 years as CFO for Shand Mining, Inc. In the role of CFO for both IMI and Shand Mining, Brinker developed a reputation as someone who understands the success of the business depends as much on how you treat people as is does good financial management.
Brinker lends his business expertise to Marian University as a member of the Board of Trustees and the Board of Visitors of the Clark H. Byrum School of Business.

Founders Award for Service to Marian University

Dick and Mary Ellen Phillips ʼ63

Dick and Mary Ellen Phillips are celebrating 50 years since physically leaving Marian College, now Marian University. Dick earned a degree in biology, Mary Ellen a degree in education, but they also learned to have confidence, strive for success and carry on through challenging times. In Mary Ellen’s own words “Lessons learned at Marian have paid off many times over in terms of professional and family growth”.

Dick earned a Ph.D. in toxicology from Indiana University and his career took him to both the public and private sector. Mary Ellen used her education degree in a variety of ways and later became a professional horticulturalist. In 1996 they established the Benedetto-Phillips Endowed Scholarship and they have served on several fundraising campaigns. Since moving to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, Dick and Mary Ellen have organized alumni gatherings in their new location. The enthusiasm exhibited by Dick and Mary Ellen for Marian University is just plain exciting.

Mary McNulty Young Award for Distinguished Achievement in Community Service and Volunteerism

Mary Beth Bonaventura ʼ76

Judge Mary Beth Bonaventura currently serves as the director of the Indiana Department of Child Services. She graduated from with a degree in Psychology in 1976, and later earned a law degree from Northern Illinois University. She has served in a variety of positions within the juvenile justice system from probation officer to judge of the Juvenile Division of the Lake Superior Court. For Bonaventura all of those positions have been more than a job, they have been about being in service to children and to the community.  

Indiana Governor Mike Pence in his remarks about her appointment said, “Judge Bonaventura is uniquely qualified to lead the state's Department of Child Services and help to protect Hoosier children from abuse and neglect. She is a strong leader who has an impeccable reputation of integrity and compassion for children."

Bonaventura has served on numerous task forces and boards which all have been directed at improving the system and environment for children.    

The Central Indiana Chapter Young Alumni Award

Jenny Morris ʼ05

Jenny Morris is the Marian University director of internships. She graduated in with a bachelor of science in marketing. Morris has held a passion for student internships since her time as an undergraduate. It was one of her two internships at Marian University that led to her first career, and she dreamed of more Marian University students having that same experience.

After graduation in 2005, Jenny began her career as the public relations manager for the Girl Scouts of Hoosier Capital. After two years she then became the grants manager of the Girl Scouts of Central Indiana. In 2009, Morris retuned to Marian University in the position she holds today. Her efforts are seen by many, but the students feel the impact of her dedication. One student noted, “Jenny set aside multiple hours to review my résumé, but the one thing I will remember most about Jenny is her genuine interest in getting to know me as an individual.” 

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Marian University does not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, sex, gender, sexual orientation, religion, creed, national origin, age or disabilities in the recruiting and selection of students for admission.