Each year, we set our ledgers aside to honor those among us who lead the industry and support the department during the Paul W. Parkison Department of Accounting Alumni Awards. Held annually since 2010, the event features a series of awards that recognize emerging leaders, influential professionals, and lifetime achievers.

Submit a Nomination

The next Accounting Alumni Awards Ceremony will be held November 18, 2024, and nominations are currently being accepted. Know an alumnus/alumna who qualifies for one of the awards below? If so, fill out the nomination form, which is considered for the next three years. For example, a new nomination not chosen for an award in 2024 will automatically be considered in 2025 and 2026's award cycles. 

Nominate Someone

Questions?

For information about the awards dinner or nomination process, please contact us.

The Awards

Emerging Leader Award

This award recognizes an accounting alumnus of Ball State who has demonstrated leadership in their career. This person is typically in the first ten years of their accounting or finance career and has demonstrated qualities that place them ahead of their peers. This individual has made outstanding contributions to the accounting or finance profession through work, community service, and giving back to Ball State.

Graduate of Excellence

This award recognizes an accounting alumnus of Ball State who consistently goes above and beyond the expectations of a typical individual in their field. This person is typically ten years or more into their accounting or finance career and has demonstrated qualities that put them ahead of their peers. This individual has contributed meaningfully to their employer, community, and Ball State. This individual is recognized as a successful leader that other alumni would desire to emulate and garners respect from peers, employees, and friends.

Lifetime Achievement Award

This award is given to an individual who has dedicated their life and career to making the accounting profession better. Their dedication to their workplace, community, and Ball State is exceptional and unusual. This individual has contributed meaningfully to enriching the lives of others and demonstrates the qualities that other graduates desire to emulate.

Past Accounting Alumni Awards Programs and Recipients

The Parkison Department of Accounting honored ten outstanding alumni at the 13th annual Accounting Alumni Awards on May 1, 2023.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Greg Arnott BS '80
BKD LLP (now FORVIS), Partner (retired)

Award of Excellence

Matt House BS '93
Christy Paddock Advisors, President
Arcadia, Indiana

Randy Sizemore BS '93, MS '08
Andrew Johnson Bank, Executive VP/CFO
Greeneville, Tennessee

Emerging Leader

Bud Graessle BS '05, MS '06
OneAmerica Financial Partners, Inc. VP Financial Performance
Fishers, Indiana

Adam Schaffer BS '13
Perkins Schaffer CPAs, Inc., Director
Fort Wayne, Indiana

Scott Sutton BS '07, MS '08
CBIZ Somerset, Managing Director
Kokomo, Indiana

Alexis Williams BS '11, MS '12
Early Learning Indiana, Controller
New Palestine, Indiana

3 Under 30 Award

Jarrett James BS '15, MBA '16
RSM US LLP, Assurance Manager
Chicago, Illinois

Eli Parks BS '16, MS '18
EY LLP, Senior
Indianapolis, Indiana

Jake Sciaudone BS '15, MS '16
Katz, Sapper & Miller LLP, Manager
Carmel, Indiana

The Parkison Department of Accounting honored eleven outstanding alumni at the 12th annual Accounting Alumni Awards on May 2, 2022.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Thomas Ertel

Thomas R. Ertel  BS ’77
Batesville, Indiana

James Duncan

James R. Duncan
Ball State University Faculty Emeritus
Charlestown, Indiana

Award of Excellence

Michael Dinius

Michael Dinius BS ’86
Noble Consulting Services, Inc. CEO
Indianapolis, Indiana

Julie Hipsky

Julie Hipsky  BS ’90
BKD, LLP Partner
Indianapolis, Indiana

J. Richard Wagers

J. Richard Wagers, Jr BS ’73
Regional One Health CFO & Senior Executive Vice President (Retired)
Franklin, Tennessee

Emerging Leader

Tyler Dickey

Tyler Dickey BS ’09
Blue & Co., LLC Senior Manager
Indianapolis, Indiana

Justin Proctor

Justin R. Proctor BS ’08, MS ’10
Bath State Bank Executive VP and COO
Bath, Indiana

Stacey Sunderman

Stacey A. Sunderman BS ’99
Gene B. Glick Company Executive VP & CFO
Fishers, Indiana

3 Under 30 Award

Grace LeRoy

Grace LeRoy BS ’16
CLA, LLP Senior Associate
Fort Wayne, Indiana

Hailey Rolsten

Hailey Rolsten BS ’16, MS ’17
Katz, Sapper & Miller Tax Manager
Indianapolis, Indiana

Ryan McMonagle

Ryan McMonagle BS ’17, MS ’18
Dauby O’Connor & Zaleski, LLC Audit Senior
Carmel, Indiana

The Parkison Department of Accounting selected ten outstanding alumni to honor at the 2020 Accounting Alumni Awards dinner.

The COVID-19 pandemic required us to cancel the 2020 dinner, and we planned to honor these alumni at the 2021 dinner. However, the pandemic continued, and forced us to cancel the 2021 event as well. We arranged to present these awards in individual ceremonies in April/May, 2021, and we are proud to share recordings of those presentations through the links below.

Lifetime Achievement Award

 

Renae Conley

Renae Conley ’80, MBA ‘82   (view video)  
Chair, Ball State Board of Trustees
CEO of ER Solutions, LLC
Retired Executive Vice President of HR and Administration
Entergy Corporation

Awards of Excellence


Ben Kimmerling

Ben Kimmerling ‘86 (view video)  
Principal 
Somerset CPAs

 

David A. Northern, Sr.

David Northern ‘97 (view video)
Executive Director/CEO
Housing Authority of Champaign County

 

Katherine White

Katherine White ‘94 (view video)
CFO and Board Treasurer 
Muncie Power Products

Emerging Leaders

 

Dave Cooper

Dave Cooper ’02, MS ‘03 (view video)
Partner
Ernst & Young

 

Brittany Schutter

Brittany Schutter  ’08, MS ‘09 (view video)
Director
Katz, Sapper & Miller

 

Amy Unterfranz

Amy (Ring) Unterfranz ‘05 (view video)
Principal
Dauby, O’Connor & Zaleski, LLC

 

3 Under 30 Awards

 

Molly Belmonte

Molly (Schwab) Belmonte ‘14 (view video)
Ag Credit Analyst 
Bath State Bank

 

Erica Chaney

Erica (Wurst) Chaney ‘14 (view video)
Audit Manager 
Deloitte, LLP

 

Ben Stone

Ben Stone ‘13 (view video)
Assurance Manager 
Ernst & Young

The Parkison Department of Accounting honored ten outstanding alumni at the 10th annual Accounting Alumni Awards on April 27, 2019.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Lucinda Van Alst ’70, MS ’76
Faculty Emerita
Ball State University  

Award of Excellence

Linn Crull '78
Owner and Managing Director 
Whitinger & Company, LLC                 

Brian Heckaman '80
CEO 
Kaufman Rossin

Sonja McClelland '93
Executive VP, Secretary, Treasurer, and CFO
Hurco Companies, Inc.

Emerging Leader

Justin Hayes '05, '07
Director
Katz, Sapper & Miller 

Tiffany Richardson '03, '04
Tax Partner
Crowe, LLP

Tiffany Westfall '03, '04
Assistant Professor of Accounting
Ball State University

3 Under 30 Award

Jack Allgood '13
Manager 
Deloitte, LLP 

Nathan Newburn '14
Manager 
Somerset CPAs 

David Richardt '10
Senior Manager 
BGBC Partners, LLP 


The Parkison Department of Accounting honored ten outstanding alumni at the 9th annual Accounting Alumni Awards on April 30, 2018.

Lifetime Achievement Award

James C. Lintzenich '75 
Retired
USA Group/Sallie Mae   

Award of Excellence

Mark E. Downham '79
Ball State University
Retired, EY        

Robert Kearns '76
Senior VP and CFO
Synovia Solutions, LLC      

Emerging Leader

T.J. Bush '05, '06
Member/Owner
Whitinger & Company

Justin D. McNabb '01, '02
Partner
BKD, LLP

Casse L. Tate '04, '05
Partner
Katz, Sapper & Miller

Michael L. Turner '07
Senior Manager
Dauby O'Connor & Zaleski, LLC

3 Under 30 Award

Lesley A. Freeman '12
Manager
Katz, Sapper & Miller

John Mihm '13
Senior Accountant
Spot Freight

Jessica Wenning '13
Manager
EY

The Parkison Department of Accounting honored five outstanding alumni at the 8th annual Accounting Alumni Awards on May 1, 2017.

Dedication of the Named Department

Paul W. Parkison '58, '61
Professor Emeritus of Accounting

Emerging Leader Award

Sarah G. Turner '98
The Faurote Group

3 Under 30 Awards

Joseph G. Edwards '11, '13
Estep Doctor & Co.

Joe Macri '12
EY (Ernst & Young)

Justin M. Verbeten '12
BKD, LLP

Ball State University's Department of Accounting honored six outstanding alumni at the Accounting Alumni Awards on May 2, 2016.

Award of Excellence

Steven J. Riddle ’80
Partner
Somerset CPAs

Emerging Leader Awards

Brittany K. Gerig ’07 MS ’08
Tax manager
Crowe Horwath LLP

Ryan A. Hornaday ’96
Executive VP, CFO and treasurer
Emmis Communication Corp.

3 Under 30 Awards

Nathan J. Fox ’09 MS ’10
Manager
BKD LLP

Heath V. Riley ’11 MS ’12
Senior accountant
Somerset CPAs

Sara E. Sandifer ’10
Assurance senior associate
PricewaterhouseCoopers
Ball State University's Department of Accounting honored 10 outstanding alumni at the Accounting Alumni Awards on April 27, 2015.

Awards of Excellence

Richard J. Hall ’89
Partner and management committee member
Barnes & Thornburg LLP

David A. McDaniel
’81
Partner
Sikich

Cherí E. O'Neill
’89
President and CEO
Ball State University Foundation

 

Emerging Leader Awards

James E. Babcock ’97
Partner
EY (Ernst & Young LLP)

Adlai D. Chester ’02 MS ’03
CFO 
Mainstreet

Ronald R. Melling Jr.
’98
Assurance and consulting practice
Crowe Horwarth LLP

Shawn P. Williams ’02
Senior manager
Blue & Co. LLC

 
3 Under 30 Awards

Keely N. Crenshaw ’08 MS ’09
Tax manager
Deloitte

Eric W. Flueckiger ’07 MS ’09
Managing consultant, International Tax Services
BKD

Trent B. Wilson
’09 MS ’10
Audit senior
Dauby O'Conner & Zaleski LLC
Ball State University's Department of Accounting honored 10 outstanding alumni at its fifth annual Accounting Alumni Awards on April 28, 2014. View the program booklet (PDF) for profiles of the honorees.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Niel C. Ellerbrook ’70
Retired CEO
Vectren Corporation

Carl R. George ’70 MA ’70
CEO
Carl George Advisory LLC

Bryan A. Mills ’82
President and CEO
Community Health Network

Awards of Excellence

Gregory A. Arnott ’80
Regional accounting and auditing director
BKD LLP

Lori A. Luther ’89
Vice president-operations
IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital

Emerging Leader Awards

Sarah E. Reisman ’03
Plant controller
Batesville Casket Co.

Joshua T. Sickler
’02 MS ’03
Tax and business consultant
Sikich

3 Under 30 Awards

James L. Liechty ’06 MS ’07
Assurance manager
Ernst & Young

Justin R. Proctor ’08 MS ’10
Audit associate
BKD LLP

Brittany D. Schutter ’08 MS ’09
Manager
Katz, Sapper & Miller

Ball State University's Department of Accounting honored nine outstanding alumni at its fourth annual Accounting Alumni Awards on April 29, 2013. The annual dinner and awards presentation were at the Ball State University Alumni Center. View the program booklet (PDF) for profiles of the honorees.
 

Lifetime Achievement Award

Tony Smith CPA ’68
Former partner
Ernst & Young

Awards of Excellence

George Baccash ’77
Partner
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

 
David Charles ’79
Partner
Katz, Sapper & Miller

Mike Ray ’83
Chief executive officer
Vera Bradley 

Emerging Leader Awards

Travis Chamberlain ’98
Partner
CliftonLarsonAllen LLP

John Scudder ’99
Issues and appeals associate
Jones Day

Richard Wittgren
’96
Senior manager
BKD LLP

3 Under 30 Awards

Brian Dingman ’04
Manager
London Witte & Co. LLP

George "Bud" Graessle
’04 MS ’06
Manager
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

Megan Reed ’05
Manager
Deloitte & Touche

Ball State University's Department of Accounting honored eight outstanding alumni at its third Accounting Alumni Awards on April 30, 2012. The annual dinner and awards presentation were at the Ball State University Alumni Center. View the program booklet (PDF) for profiles of the honorees.

Awards of Excellence

Charles M. Allen, CPA, ’75
Chief executive officer
Crowe Horwath LLP

Randy Pond ’77
Executive vice president, operations, processes and systems
Cisco Systems

Emerging Leader Awards

Dexter Blackmon ’01 MS ’02
Operational control division chief
Defense Finance and Accounting Service

Randie Dial ’98
Partner
CliftonLarsonAllen

 
Ryan Jones ’04
Senior manager
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)

3 Under 30 Awards

T.J. Bush ’05 MS ’06
Senior accountant
Whitinger & Co. LLC

Renee Fortman ’06 MS ’07
Senior auditor
Ernst & Young LLP

Justin Patterson ’06
Senior analyst
Morgan Keegan & Co.
Ball State University's Department of Accounting honored seven outstanding alumni at its second Accounting Alumni Awards on April 25, 2011. The annual dinner and awards presentation were at the Ball State University Alumni Center.

Keynote Speaker

Paul W. Parkison ’58 MA ’61 
Chairman emeritus of the Department of Accounting 
Miller College of Business, Ball State University 

Awards of Excellence

J. Robert Browning Jr. ’75
Shareholder
Peters, Browning & Co. P.C.

James L. Wainscott ’79
Chairman, president, and chief executive officer
AK Steel Corporation
Magna cum laude

Emerging Leader Awards

Christopher R. Cobb ’03 MS ’04
Audit manager
Deloitte

Jeffery J. Lathrop ’00 MS ’01
Audit principal
Dauby O'Connor & Zaleski LLC 

3 Under 30 Awards

Justin M. Hayes ’05 MS ’07
Audit in-charge
Katz, Sapper & Miller LLP
Cum laude

Amy E. Ring ‘05
Audit supervisor
Dauby O'Connor & Zaleski LLC

Joseph H. Schroeder ’03 MS ’04
Graduate assistant (doctoral program)
Michigan State University Department of Accounting and Information Systems
Summa cum laude

Ball State University's Department of Accounting honored seven outstanding alumni at its first Accounting Alumni Awards on April 26, 2010.  The inaugural dinner and awards presentation were in L.A. Pittenger Student Center's Cardinal Hall.

Keynote Speaker

Niel C. Ellerbrook ’70
Chairman and CEO
Vectren Corporation

Lifetime Achievement Award

Paul W. Parkison ’58 MA ’61
Chairman emeritus of the Department of Accounting
Miller College of Business, Ball State University

Awards of Excellence

Carl L. Chapman ’77
President and chief operating officer
Vectren Corporation
Summa cum laude

Steven R. Imler ’69
Partner
Ent & Imler CPA Group PC

3 Under 30 Awards (four-way tie)

Chad Garber ’04
Audit supervisor
BKD LLP
Cum laude

Jeremy Klonowski ’03 MS ’05
Supervisor, public accounting
Somerset CPAs
Magna cum laude

Christopher Melling ’03 MS ’04
Controller
Weaver Popcorn Co.
Cum laude

Casse (Wert) Tate ’04 MS ’ 05
Manager, Business Advisory Group
Katz, Sapper & Miller LLP
Cum laude