You can believe it, another record setting crowd attended the College of Business annual Spring Luncheon in Chicago on the last day of March, 2011. 920 people filled the Regency Ballroom in Downtown Chicago for the 51st time since the tradition was begun.
Jim Goss ’72, current CBAA president, welcomed everyone with the rousing cheer of “I-L-L,” to which the eager crowd responded, “I-N-I.”
Following lunch, Dean Larry DeBrock spoke to attendees about the tide of applicants to the College in the past year. He said thousands applied for the 580 slots; a testament to the vitality of the College and the prominence of alumni.
Despite the continuing budgetary hurdles faced by the University, DeBrock assured those in attendance the College remains strong.
DeBrock shared a story about a recent applicant, an able athlete who was top of his high school class, and who had a 35 ACT score. Though he came from a family of Illini, the student was uncertain about signing with the College of Business because several competing schools were offering much more financial support.
DeBrock was able to make a “very competitive offer,” and he took the opportunity to encourage everyone to give money to help the College to compete and so that future applicants might receive the same opportunities that enable alumni to achieve so much.
The keynote speaker and Appreciation Award recipient this year was John Corzine ’69, chairman and chief executive officer, MF Global Holdings Ltd., former governor and US Senator for New Jersey, former chairman and chief executive officer, Goldman Sachs.
Corzine’s affable personality was abundant in his address to the crowd of gathered Illini. Corzine expressed his pride in being an Illinois alum and the beneficiary of a strong business education. He shared his perspective of growing up in Willy Station, a small town in Illinois, and going to Illinois. Illinois gave him a foundation for his life, strengthening his values and competitive spirit that he carries to this day.
Corzine touched on the difficulties of working in public life. He tempered his message with a belief that, “Our best days are still ahead.” He genuinely believes in bipartisan ideals and the power of Americans to continue growing and leading the way to a better future.
He called for the continued investment in higher education with the mature viewpoint of a child of the sixties, noting that if we do not bear the burden of educating our children, others will fill that gap for us.
Tom Vogelsinger ’73 ’74 MBA was this year’s recipient of the Distinguished Alumnus Award. Vogelsinger comes from a big Illini family and only ever considered Illinois for his undergraduate education. He was the chairman of the UI Alumni Association Board of Directors from 2008 to 2010, and he served as a member of the President’s Advisory Council. He thanked his wife of 37 years, Lynn, who is also an Illini.
Amy Weintraub ’99 announced awards for Excellence-in-Teaching given to three instructors, honoring them for their diligence and devotion to their students, courses and research.
Seda Durguner received the award for Excellence-in-Teaching by a Teaching Assistant.
The Excellence-in-Undergraduate-Teaching was presented to Accountancy Professor Jasmijn Bol.
The Excellence-in-Graduate-Teaching was presented to Finance Professor Scott Weisbenner.