Six Recipients Honored with Prestigious Alumni Merit Award

At BW's Alumni Celebration on May 14, six individuals received an Alumni Merit Award - the highest recognition that can be bestowed upon an alumnus.

SHIRLEY BALOGH - Class of 1971
For her compassion and selfless dedication to bettering the lives of adults with developmental disabilities.  

Bringing passion and compassion to her career, Balogh has devoted 40 years to helping others. Upon graduating from BW with a bachelor's degree in social welfare, as well as a degree in health and physical education and recreation, she began work in Cleveland as a counselor with inner-city youth. 


Moving to Florida, she worked for a state agency before taking a position with the Alliance for Independence, an agency that helps adults with developmental disabilities live independent lives and succeed in the workplace. Today, she leads the organization as president and chief executive officer.

KHASHYAR DARVICH - Class of 1991
For the passionate spirit and inspirational talent he shares with the world in his poems, scripts, novels and documentaries.
Having graduated with a degree in English, Darvich is a creative genius who brings beauty and spirituality to his work. He has written multiple film scripts and novels, as well as hundreds of poems.

In addition, he founded Wakan Productions, a film documentary company that achieved acclaim for "Peace Pilgrim: Walking 25,000 Miles for Peace" and "Dalai Lama Renaissance." The latter film is among the top-grossing documentaries of 2008. It earned 12 film festival awards and is the official selection of 40 film festivals around the world.


ROBERT WESTON DASH - Class of 1961
For his generous service, compassion and exemplary dedication to higher education.

An advocate of higher education for more than four decades, Dash began his career path by majoring in Spanish at BW. He went on to earn a master's degree in Spanish and a doctorate in modern languages.

He became a professor of Spanish and literature at the University of the Pacific, where he taught for 37 years. He is the recipient of a Sears & Roebuck Excellence in Teaching Award and a Phi Kappa Phi award. In addition, Dash has written several publications and is a member of many honorary councils and societies. He also co-founded the Scottish Rite Clinic for Childhood Language Disorders.


GREGORY HILL - Class of 1981
For his expertise in osteopathic and orthopedic medicine and for serving our country during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Starting with a biology major at BW and progressing to his award-winning work in osteopathic and orthopedic medicine, Hill has had an impressive 20-year medical career.

A retired Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army and The Ohio Army National Guard, he served two combat tours with Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, Certificate of Appreciation, Army Commendation Medal, and the Global War on Terrorism Medal.

He is certified in orthopedic and hand surgery with expertise in arthritis, traumatic upper extremity injuries and microsurgical reconstruction.


SCOTT F. PERCY - Class of 1971
For his excellence in the medical field of endocrinology and advances in biomedical technologies in an effort to aid and comfort chronically ill children.

Dedicated to the welfare of children, Percy helped introduce the first non-hospital-based blood glucose analyzer that enabled diabetes patients to take control of their illness. His efforts earned him the International Juvenile Diabetes Foundation Award.

He also designed blood glucose analyzers for the blind, the first insulin pen injection systems, and a non-invasive glucose analyzer with the ability to accurately detect a blood glucose signal from the skin surface.

Currently, he is the department chair for clinical engineering at a college in Tucson.


JAMES WONNACOTT - Class of 1964
For his love of music, dedication to performance and past work directing the College's Alumni Jazz Orchestra.

A teacher, performer and director whose musical career has benefited BW as well as area schools and the community, Wonnacott graduated from the College with a Bachelor of Music Education degree.

His music can be heard in more than 150 radio/television commercials. In addition, he has recorded with top artists - including Maureen McGovern, The James Gang, The Turtles, Jean Carne and the O'Jays and appeared as a piccolo player in the movie "The Great Race."

Among his campus activities, he founded the BW Alumni Jazz Orchestra and spent 25 years as its director.

Posted 5/11
Share |