Executive Education Awards recognize corporate partners, faculty

Author: Carol Elliott


An orthopedic manufacturer, an improv group and a CEO from an investment bank in Puerto Rico were among the diverse group of award recipients during the annual Notre Dame Executive Education awards banquet, held June 14 inside Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center at the University of Notre Dame.

“The banquet is our opportunity to celebrate with our faculty, alumni, clients and partners who, in very real and meaningful ways, contribute to our success,” said Sharon Keane, director of Executive Education, which is part of the Mendoza College of Business. “We honor their contributions and appreciate their support.”

Keane also highlighted some of the department’s recent accomplishments, including the new Stayer Center for Executive Education, a new 64,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility scheduled for completion in February 2013, and No. 6 ranking of the Executive MBA program in The Wall Street Journal - The Best Executive MBA Programs (2010).

The list of 2011 awards and recipients are as follows:

·        Outstanding Leadership in Executive Education – Executive Programs: Biomet, a manufacturer and marketer of orthopedic and other products. In 2007, Biomet and Executive Education began a partnership to design, develop, and deliver a customized global leadership program. To date, more than 100 Biomet leaders from around the world have experienced this program. The award recognizes exemplary corporate leadership, as well as a commitment to executive education and the development of global leadership, among other criteria.

·        Partner in Innovation Award: Spark Creative, a Chicago-based corporate entertainment group that offers a variety of business training programs designed to facilitate creative thinking and group interaction. The Spark Creative team has collaborated with Executive Education for a decade to foster executive learning through creative sessions in the Executive Integral Leadership program.  The award recognizes a strategic business partner to Executive Education who demonstrates innovation and creativity.

·        Distinguished Alumni Award: Jose Fernandez, the president and chief executive officer of Oriental Financial Group Inc. (ND ’85). Fernandez led the acquisition of failed competitor Eurobank from FDIC receivership in April 2010, which helped stabilize the banking industry in Puerto Rico. The award recognizes an alumna or alumnus for demonstrating creativity in addressing business-related issues and for generosity with ideas, time and other resources.

·        Arnie Ludwig Outstanding Teacher Award: John Affleck-Graves, professor of finance and executive vice president of the University of Notre Dame.  The honor goes to a faculty member chosen by Executive MBA students in the South Bend program and is named for a former Executive Education director. This marks the fifth time that Affleck-Graves has received the outstanding teaching award.

·        Leo Burke Outstanding Teacher Award: Charles E. Bamford, adjunct professor of Strategy in the Department of Management at Notre Dame and professor of Entrepreneurship and Strategy with the McColl School of Business at Queens University of Charlotte.  Executive MBA students in the Chicago program choose the winner of this award, which is named for a former Executive Education director.

·        Inspiring Educator Award – Executive Programs: Mel Dowdy, program faculty member in Executive Education and former executive director of the Center for Organizational Excellence, Bon Secours Richmond Health System.  Dowdy was recognized for superior performance in the classroom within non-degree programs. He teaches in several custom as well as two signature programs: Executive Integral Leadership, a values-based approach to leadership for executive leaders with 15-plus years of experience; and Unleashing Your Leadership Potential, which provides high-potential emerging leaders with support and knowledge key to  making the transition from individual contributors to managers.

Founded in 1980, Notre Dame Executive Education provides leaders in the executive and management ranks the opportunity to develop and strengthen their leadership abilities and business acumen skills through both degree and non-degree programs. In keeping with the Notre Dame mission, the program emphasizes values-based leadership in addition to academic rigor.