Trinity Christian Church 1231 E. Pleasant Run Cedar Hill, TX 75104
Northwood University Countess de Hoernle Student Life Center 2600 North Military Trail West Palm Beach, FL 33409
10:30 A.M. Traditional undergraduate students and MBA students from the Midland location
3:00 P.M. Adult Degree Program students and MBA students from all locations
Northwood University Bennett Sports Center 4000 Whiting Drive Midland, MI 48640
Keith A. Pretty, J.D.
President and CEO
The honorary doctorate is the highest award a university can make to an individual who has contributed to society in a meaningful way. Following are listed those individuals Northwood University will recognize this year at the Michigan, Florida, and Texas campuses. They join a "Gallery of Distinction" of past honorary degree awardees. It is an honor and a privilege to recognize the men and women whom Northwood has vested with degrees during the past 55 years.
Through their accomplishments, ideals, and support, our communities have become better places and our nation has benefited. These leaders have won recognition in business, their professions, fine arts, education, and religion. Their involvement in the thrust of The Northwood Idea will continue forever.
In observance of one of Northwood’s finest traditions, all recipients of honorary degrees are presented with personal caps, gowns, and hoods. Every year they are invited back to participate in the commencement processional, enjoy social events, and renew old friendships.
Northwood University salutes all the members of the Gallery of Distinction and pledges to them the dedicated continuation of The Northwood Idea into the 21st century.
Dale A. Petroskey - Commencement Speaker
President & CEO, Dallas Regional Chamber, Dallas, Texas
Dale A. Petroskey assumed the position of President and CEO of the Dallas Regional Chamber (DRC) on April 1, 2014. He works with the Board, staff, and more than 2,000 member companies to increase economic prosperity and enhance the quality of life throughout the region. The DRC focuses on economic development initiatives, improving education at all levels, and setting public policy direction designed to maintain a healthy business climate in North Texas.
Petroskey brings to the Chamber a strong background in public policy, strategic communications, and non-profit management, having held leadership positions in all three sectors – public, private, and nonprofit – for more than 30 years.
Early in his career he worked 18 years in Washington, D.C., serving as Chief of Staff to Congressman Bill Goodling (PA), Assistant White House Press Secretary to President Ronald Reagan, Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs at the U.S. Department of Transportation under then-Secretary Elizabeth Dole, and as Senior Vice President of Mission Programs at the National Geographic Society. From 1999 to 2008, Petroskey served as President of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York, and later as Executive Vice President of Marketing and Community Development for the Texas Rangers, and Vice President of Public Affairs for Occidental Petroleum Corporation, the nation’s fourth largest energy company.
A graduate of Michigan State University, Petroskey is a member of numerous boards, including the Dallas Citizens Council, Dallas Medical Resources, the Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau, Educate Dallas, The Alfalfa Club of Washington, D.C., and Clayton Kershaw’s Challenge. He is also a Senior Fellow at the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress in Washington, D.C. Petroskey and his wife, Ann, live in Dallas and have three grown children.
John W. McGowan - Commencement Speaker
Retired Senior Vice President, The Private Bank at Bank of America, Stuart, Florida
John W. McGowan retired from Bank of America in 2007 where he served as Senior Vice President and Trust Officer in The Private Bank office in Stuart, Florida. He began his Private Banking career with Shawmut Bank of Boston where he advised clients on estate and financial planning matters and served as a Senior Trust Officer. Coming to Florida in 1982, McGowan served as President of NBD Trust Company of Florida in North Palm Beach.
He joined The Private Bank of Bank of Boston-Florida in 1994 as Trust Counsel and Vice President in charge of Trust and Estate Administration in the Palm Beach office. Following a merger with Fleet, and prior to Fleet’s merger with Bank of America, McGowan served as Senior Vice President and Regional Manager in the Stuart, Florida office.
A native of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, he is a retired member of the Massachusetts Bar Association. McGowan attended Thayer Academy following a move to Quincy, MA. He earned his undergraduate degree at Acadia University (BA), law degree at Dalhousie University Schulich School of Law (JD) and his Masters of Business Administration in Finance at the University of Western Ontario. He is a graduate of the National Trust School.
McGowan has been active on various community boards. He is a member of the Board of Governors of Northwood University (Florida campus), the Board of Directors of Junior Achievement of Palm Beach and the Treasure Coast, the Advisory Board of the Jupiter Lifelong Learning Society at Florida Atlantic University. He served as an invited member of the Board of Governors of Acadia University from 1979 to 1989 and is a past President of the Lighthouse Habitat for Humanity affiliate. He is a Paul Harris Fellow in Rotary International and was a founding director of the City Club in North Palm Beach. Prior to moving to Florida he was trustee of Museum of Transportation in Brookline, MA, a member of the New England Planned Giving Group and a lecturer on Estate Planning in continuing education programs at Babson College.
He and his wife, Patricia, will celebrate 50 years of marriage on May 10, 2015. They live in Stuart, Florida, and Upper LaHave, Nova Scotia. They have two children, John who lives in Naples, Florida and Melissa who lives in Lantana, Florida, and two grandchildren, Ashley and Christopher.
Steven D. Kelly - Commencement Speaker
Chairman & CEO, Rehmann, Saginaw, Michigan
Steve Kelly is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Rehmann and its subsidiaries, one of the largest CPA, business consulting and financial services firms in the Midwest, with 800 associates in 19 offices located in Florida, Indiana, Michigan and Ohio. Since joining Rehmann in 1974, he has served on the Audit and Tax teams where he concentrated his professional efforts on physician-based health care practices. He continued in this area when he served as the firm’s Human Resource partner, and later as a member of its Management Group. Kelly was named Chairman and CEO in 1985, and currently devotes his time to leading Rehmann to better serve its customers and associates.
Kelly is a graduate of the University of Michigan, with a Bachelor of Business Administration. He is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Major Firms Advisory Group; as well as the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants.
Active in the community, Kelly serves on the Saginaw YMCA Board, and has previously been involved and served on boards for the Chamber of Commerce, the Saginaw United Way, the St. Thomas Aquinas Finance Committee, and numerous other civic and professional organizations. In 2011 he was named to the Junior Achievement Hall of Fame.
Kelly and his wife of 41 years, Mary, live in his hometown of Saginaw, Michigan. They have three children and six grandchildren.
Beth Chappell - Commencement Speaker
President and Chief Executive Officer of the Detroit Economic Club (DEC), Detroit, Michigan
Beth Chappell is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Detroit Economic Club (DEC), one of the nation’s premier speaking venues for CEOs and government officials. The Club is a non-partisan, non-profit membership organization that is a platform for the debate and discussion of today’s business, government and social issues.
After graduating from Michigan State University in 1979 with a BA in marketing, Chappell spent 16 years at AT&T Corporation. She served in various capacities including Global Services Vice President where she led relationship-sales efforts with large international clients, and Director of Network Deployment, where she and her team oversaw the $14 billion installation of AT&T’s fiber optic network.
She bid AT&T a fond farewell in 1995 to form the Chappell Group, a business consultancy. Four years later she joined Compuware Corporation as Executive Vice President, Communications and Investor Relations. In April, 2002 Chappell became the President & CEO of the Detroit Economic Club.
Chappell sits on the boards of American Axle & Manufacturing Corporation, Detroit Economic Club, Detroit Regional Chamber, Lawrence Tech College of Management Advisory Board, Michigan State University SE Michigan Campaign Cabinet, St. Joseph Mercy Foundation, The Parade Company and United Way of Southeast Michigan.
Chappell and her husband, Warren, live in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, with the youngest of their six children, Kate.
Harry Thomas Flotemersch
Kristen Elizabeth Riley
The Arthur E. Turner Award
Harry Thomas Flotemersch
The R. Gary Stauffer Business Administration Award
The Vada Bennett Dow Humanitarian Award
Zachary S. Hite
Dr. Catherine W. Chen Endowed Scholarship
Edgar A. Madden Writing Award
Krystal Lynn Kohlman
Willo Anker Award
Town and Campus Leadership Award
Nicholas James Langlois
Outstanding International Student Award
Kah Keat Loo
Charles Dubois Award
Emily Ann Bagwell
The Honors Leadership Award
Harry Thomas Flotemersch
Jillian Gail Fisher
G.D. Crain, Jr. Foundation Award
Edward N. Cole Award
Tyler James Wright
National Automobile Dealers Association Award
Alora Lynn Brand
I.W. Thompson Automotive Award
International Business Award
Taylor Edward Papiernik and
Allison M. Gustafson
Entertainment, Sport & Promotion Management Award
Troy Andrew Chinoski
William T. Anderson Management Information Systems Award
Michael Richard Keith
The Zehnder's of Frankenmuth Hospitality Award
Matthew Ryan Jensen
Automotive Aftermarket Management Award
James D. Herzog
Ludwig Von Mises Economics Award
Harry Thomas Flotemersch
Jaylee Marie Samuels
Frederick T. Keeler Marketing Scholarship Award
Mackenzie Faith Johnson
McKenzie Jean Terwillegar
Banking & Finance Award
Institute of Management Accountants Award
Dorian Kendall Brooks
Jeffrey A. Bennett Accounting Award
Derek Roe and
Paul M. Fink
Arts and Business Award
Fashion Marketing & Management Award
Brianna Kristine Blumenherst
Robert M. Ellis Award
Sophie Rose Adams
David and Daniel Goetz Academic Athlete Award
Student Government Association Activities Award
Nicholas James Langlois
Pi Kappa Delta Omicron Chapter Distinguished Competitive Speaker of the Year Award
Varsity - Kirk G. Longuski
Novice – Cherell Paula Granger
Automotive Marketing & Management
Entertainment, Sport & Promotion Management
International Student Award
Adult Degree Program Outstanding Student Award
Spirit of Northwood Award