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Apr 26, 2017 2017-04 Alumni Faculty

College of Business Honors Alumni and Faculty at 2017 Spring Luncheon

Nearly 1,000 College of Business alumni gathered in the Sheraton Grand Chicago for the 57th annual Spring Luncheon on April 21, 2017. The event was sponsored by the College of Business and the College of Business Alumni Association. The emcee for the event was Derrick Young BA ’90, who is the traffic reporter at CBS 2 Chicago. This annual gathering featured the recognition of alumni and faculty for their achievements and service to the College of Business and the University of Illinois.

Alumni Awards

College of Business Distinguished Alumnus Award The College of Business Distinguished Alumnus Award was presented to Karen Golz, ACCY ’76.This award recognizes graduates of the College of Business for outstanding career achievements. recipients of alumni awards - Spring Luncheon 2017 From left: Steve Miller, Karen Golz, College of Business Dean Jeffrey Brown, and College of Business Alumni Association President Julie Scott. Golz is Ernst & Young’s global vice chair working with Japan, a role she assumed in July 2016. In this role, she assists the Japanese practice with improving its quality and regulatory processes. Previously, Golz served as Ernst & Young’s global and Americas vice chair, independence with responsibility for Ernst & Young’s global independence policies, processes and consultation, and the implementation of independence matters across the Ernst & Young network. Golz has been an audit partner since 1987 and served clients from startups to large international companies in a number of industries. She graduated summa cum laude from the University of Illinois, and her name is on the 1976 Bronze Tablet, the highest academic distinction bestowed at Illinois. Golz has also served on numerous charitable boards and committees in leadership roles over the years. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the University of Illinois Foundation. College of Business Appreciation Award The College of Business Appreciation Award was presented to Steve Miller, BA ’87. The College of Business Appreciation Award recognizes outstanding service to the alumni association and the College. Miller is a partner and co-founder of Origin Ventures. Prior to co-founding Origin in 1999, Steve spent 10 years at Quill Corporation, a direct marketer of office products started by his family in 1956. Prior to his family’s sale of the company to Staples in 1998, Miller had been running Quill’s e-commerce operation. Miller serves on the board of Impact Engine and VHT, and he was previously a director of doggyloot and Shoutlet. He was on the board of GrubHub for the first four years after Origin led the company’s initial round of venture funding. Prior to its successful exit in 2004, he served on the board of directors of iNest (an Origin Ventures Fund I company). He was also an investor and advisor at before it was acquired by Time Inc. in 2006. Since his graduation from the University of Illinois, Miller has generously given back to the university. He serves on the Dean’s Business Council and on the board of the Hillel Foundation. He also endowed the funding for the Steven N. Miller Entrepreneurial Scholarships and the Diane N. & Steven N. Miller Centennial Chair in Business, which is currently held by Professor Madhu Viswanathan.

Teaching Awards

Excellence-in-Teaching Award for Undergraduate Teaching The Excellence-in-Teaching Award for Undergraduate Teaching was presented to Mark Wolters, a lecturer in the Department of Business Administration. faculty award recipients - Spring Luncheon 2017 From left: Mark Wolters, Joseph Burke, Jeffrey Brown, Martin Widdicks, and Julie Scott. Wolters teaches Principles of Marketing (the first marketing course students take) and Advanced Marketing Management (the senior-level capstone course). Although these are large lecture courses, Wolters works tirelessly to ensure that students feel like part of a community. His approach to teaching focuses on making the courses interactive, experiential, and developmental. He has integrated social media into the courses to enable students to ask questions easily and more privately. Students have given him excellent evaluations for his teaching efforts. They recognize his efforts to make them feel welcome in the class, appreciated as individuals, and successful as future marketers. He regularly appears on the “List of Faculty Ranked as Excellent by Their Students.” In 2014 he received the Illinois Student Senate Teaching Excellence Award. His colleagues have noted that his teaching efforts have succeeded in changing required courses students have to take into desired courses students want to take. Excellence-in-Teaching Award for Graduate Teaching The Excellence-in-Teaching Award for Graduate Teaching was presented to Martin Widdicks, a senior lecturer in the Department of Finance. Widdicks is an expert in the area of the mathematics of derivative pricing, with emphasis on numerical techniques. He teaches what are widely considered some of the most technically demanding courses in the graduate curriculum of the Department of Finance. He has worked hard to make what could be dry topics into courses the students find interesting and understandable. He enables students to put the techniques they learn into practice in realistic settings, while also instilling in them an understanding of the limitations of the techniques. In doing so, he has managed to make the material accessible to students who come in with varying levels of preparation. Widdicks regularly appears in the “List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students.” Students in his courses describe him as very knowledgeable about the subject matter, an excellent communicator of his knowledge and expertise to students, and a caring instructor. The challenging material often brings long lines of students to Widdicks’ office, and he works with them at length to make sure they understand the material. Excellence-in-Teaching Award for a Teaching Assistant The Excellence-in-Teaching Award for a Teaching Assistant was presented to Joseph Burke, a PhD candidate in the Department of Accountancy. Burke has taught several sections of the Accounting Measurement and Disclosure course. He brought his hands-on experience with the Financial Accounting Stands Board (FASB) Codification to the course, and he gave students strategies for understanding and interpreting this daunting online resource. Burke recognizes the importance of teaching for the development of future business professionals. In his classroom teaching, he provides real-life examples to illustrate how students will become critical to the success of companies, how they will lead the teams that protect investors, and how they will move the businesses into the future. Burke’s efforts have resulted in outstanding ratings from his students, and he has been included in the “List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students.” Students commented that he was one of the best instructors they have had in the College of Business and that they appreciated how he was able to incorporate his business experiences into the class. Students find him to be friendly, prepared, easygoing, and approachable.


The keynote address for the luncheon was presented by Carol Ross Barney (Architecture ’71), whose firm Ross Barney Architects was responsible for the design of the Chicago Riverwalk. Ross Barney shared information on the history of the Chicago River and the thinking behind the design decisions for this Riverwalk, which has become a popular attribute of the downtown area.