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Story By: Brad Francis



  Originally Published on: 3/4/2014

The Ashland University Alumni Association will bestow its annual recognition awards at an Awards Luncheon on March 29 at 11:30 a.m. in Myers Convocation Center. The program will feature seven award recipients and is open to all alumni and friends.

The cost is $15 per person and those planning to attend are asked to call the AU Office of Alumni and Parent Relations at 419-289-5082.

During the program, Deborah Karl ’72 of Columbus will receive the Outstanding Alumna Award, while John Denman ’79 of Copley, Ohio, will receive the Special Achievement Award. Keith Lockwood ’02 of Wadsworth, Ohio, will collect the Young Alumnus Award. The Honorary Alumnus Award will go to Paul Ditlevson, posthumously, while the Bixler Award will be presented to Ashland’s Elizabeth Pastor. Ted Emack ’72, of Leesburg, Fla., will collect the Drushal Humanitarian Award while Robert Wendling ’59 of Ashland will be honored with the Dr. Glenn L. Clayton Award.

Karl graduated from Ashland College in 1972 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Education. She taught clerical services and high skill stenography at Pioneer Joint Vocational School in Shelby, Ohio, until 1983 when she resigned to stay at home with her two young daughters. She served on the Ashland University Alumni Association Board of Directors from 2003 to 2008. While on the Alumni Board, she worked on the College of Education building campaign. She currently serves on the Ashland University Board of Trustees and the Recreation Unlimited Board of Trustees, a non-profit organization serving individuals with physical and developmental disabilities and health concerns. Karl has been very involved in hosting Ashland University Alumni social events in both Columbus, Ohio, and Naples, Fla., and remains enthusiastic about Ashland University.

Emack graduated from Ashland College in 1972. After a career in sales, he pursued volunteer work as his passion. Emack started his own handicap equipment closet in Leesburg, Fla. Today, the closet has turned into an opportunity shop run by volunteers. He then became involved in the Personal Energy Transportation (PET) project in Jacksonville, Fla. A PET is for adults and children who lack mobility in more than 95 of the poorest countries of the world. The durable scooters are made to restore dignity, self-respect and possibility to those who have been injured by landmines, attacked by animals, born disabled or hurt in accidents. Emack serves as president of the Juanita Gregg Foundation, in memory of his mother-in-law who suffered with interstitial cystitis. The foundation provides funds to children’s charities, no- kill animal shelters and interstitial cystitis support.

Pastor is truly an icon among the thousands of people who have served Ashland University over its 136-year history. The quality of Pastor’s teaching, artistic performances and service are beyond reproach and her reputation and accomplishments as a pianist reach far beyond Ashland University and the Ashland community. She has played throughout the country, including with the NBC Symphony, Albuquerque Symphony and Flagstaff, Ariz., Symphony. Pastor received her Artist’s Diploma from Boston's Longy School of Music, where she studied piano with world- renowned pianists and teachers and furthered her studies in New York and Cleveland. She went on to become a member of the faculties of Ashland University and The Cleveland Institute of Music for more than half of a century. She is known as not only a demanding teacher but also a supportive one. Pastor has been a multi- year recipient of Ashland University’s Mentor Award, and in 1987, was selected as the second Trustees’ Distinguished Professor, an honor given by the Board of Trustees for her outstanding service to the University as an educator, performer and campus leader. She also received an honorary doctor of humanities degree from Ashland in 2007. She has served as a member of numerous University committees including the Faculty Welfare Committee and the University Promotion and Tenure Committee. In addition to her music career, Pastor had been the driving force behind AU’s Spectrum Series, which brings speakers and performers to campus, and the Music Department’s Guest Artist Series, and was also known for heading the Society for Ashland’s Preservation (SAP).

Lockwood joined AXA Advisors in 2002 after graduating from Ashland University with a degree in economics and finance. He became a Divisional Vice President in 2008, while earning national awards for his leadership abilities while in that role. Lockwood has been tailoring financial solutions for select individuals, families, non- profits and small businesses since 2012 when he went back into personal practice. He has over a decade worth of experience in investment management, portfolio construction, individual retirement planning, non- profit retirement planning, business succession planning and estate planning. Lockwood holds the FINRA Series 7, 66, and 24 licenses. He also holds several state life and health licenses. He has earned the designation of Investment Advisory Representative (IAR). Lockwood serves on the board for Medina Creative Housing as well as the Center for Ethics in Financial Education in Cleveland, where he serves as the COO/treasurer. He also has hosted a number of alumni events in Cleveland and feels a deep obligation to give back; implementing planned giving strategies with non- profit organizations in his personal life.

Denman, a 1979 graduate of Ashland College, majored in accounting and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. Following graduation, he joined The J.M. Smucker Company, embarking on a 34- year career. In 2005, Denman was promoted to Vice President, Corporate Controller and more recently, Chief Accounting Officer. Over his career, Smucker has grown from sales of $150 million to $6 billion. Through Denman’s passion for Ashland, Smucker has established a close relationship with the University. A formal accounting and finance intern partnership has been created. Over the past seven years, Smucker has hired 11 Ashland students from the internship program. Last year, Smucker alumni established an endowed scholarship at Ashland, for which Denman served as the chairperson. He is also a member of the Ashland Accounting Advisory Board and on the Board of Trustees for the Center of Ethics in Financial Education in Cleveland.

Wendling graduated from Ashland College in 1959. He taught mathematics at Elyria High School from 1959 to 1962 and attended Penn State University in 1962 and 1963 on a National Science Foundation Grant, where he graduated with his Master of Education degree. He taught mathematics at Ashland from 1963 until his retirement in 2000, and during those years he held membership in the Mathematics Association of America, the Ohio Mathematics Association (OMA), and served on two committees of OMA for four years. Wendling has been a member of the AU Athletic Hall of Fame committee including chair of the committee for 10 years, and a member of the AU Gridiron Club Board of Directors. He has won a number of awards from being inducted into the GLVC Hall of Fame in 2005 to being awarded the Golden Helmet Award by the AU Gridiron Club in 2010. He served as the scoreboard and clock operator for all the men’s basketball games and most of the women’s games ever played in the Kates Gymnasium through the end of the 2012-13 season. Wendling is a member of the Dr. Glenn L. Clayton Society, the AC/AU 1000 Club, and established the Robert and Kathleen Wendling Endowed Scholarship. Ditlevson graduated from Ottawa University in 1968 with a degree in English and communications, and completed graduate work in developmental psychology at Kansas University and S.U.N.Y. at Buffalo. In 1992, he became director of legacy giving at AU and was a very popular employee on campus. Ditlevson's job at AU was fitting; he spent his work days helping people plan their gifts, and he spent his life giving to others.

Ditlevson moved the University’s legacy estate program to a new level, bringing AU nearly $40 million in legacy gifts and life insurance policy payments. He was a devoted member of the Park Street Brethren Church, where he was a Sunday school teacher. He was also a member of Partnership for Philanthropic Planning, Northern Ohio Planned Giving Council, AFP, CASE, OFIC and ICAA. Ditlevson was the recipient of Ernie Sheetz Mentor of the Year Award by ICAA, Social Capital Paradigm Award Winner by Renaissance Inc., Who's Who in Young Men of America and Who's Who in Education. Ditlevson passed away on Nov. 17, 2010. He was known for sharing his knowledge and wisdom to others, always going above and beyond when asked for help.

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