March 01, 2005

Business College honors contributors

by Bonnie Marx

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Southern Illinois University Carbondale's College of Business and Administration recently saluted the newest members of The Henry J. Rehn Society as well as existing members who advanced to new levels of giving.

Named in honor of the first dean of the college, the society recognizes those who make significant investments in the college. Members of the society share a vision of excellence for the college and help to provide the foundation to assure continuous improvement.

Contributors receive a bronze, silver or gold medallion that corresponds to their level of giving. Each framed medallion features a sculpted bust of the former dean, created by artist Thomas Gatlin, who received his bachelor's and master of fine arts degrees at SIUC.

The members, announced every other year, received their medallions at a black-tie affair at Mary's Restaurant in Herrin on Feb. 25.

The society features several levels for contributors: Gold distinguished patrons, silver distinguished members, bronze benefactors, bronze sponsors, bronze members, bronze corporate benefactors and bronze corporate sponsors. Each new member received his or her first medallion corresponding to the level of giving. Advancing members who reach a new medallion level receive a second or third medallion.

Of those honored this year, three wish to remain anonymous. The others are:

George W. "Bill" and Barbara J. Beck of Mount Vernon advanced to the level of bronze members. Bill Beck is the president and CEO of Beck Bus Transportation Corp., headquartered in Mount Vernon. He's a 1970 graduate of SIUC with a degree in accounting. Barbara Beck graduated from SIUC in 1971 with a degree in elementary education.

Bill Beck's grandfather and father operated buses in the Mount Vernon area since 1945. He bought one of his father's buses and then grew Beck Bus from a two-bus operation to one that includes 200 school buses, 12 charter coaches and 15 transit buses, with more than 300 employees. The school buses are used by 24 school districts throughout Southern Illinois and Southern Indiana. The transit buses are in operation at SIUC by the Saluki Express.

Beck's previous honors at SIUC include serving on the School of Accountancy's advisory board, being named the Small Business Person of the Year for SIUC/CoBA in 1998 and being named Business Leader of the Year in 1999. In 2003 "School Bus Fleet Magazine" named Bill "Contractor of the Year."

Barbara retired from teaching last year after teaching for 33 years in Mount Vernon city schools. Both of the Becks' sons, Ed and Tom, work for Beck Bus. Their daughter, Tami, is an SIUC graduate who is now a guidance counselor in Mount Vernon.

Edward A. "Ed" Hamilton of Charlotte, N.C., joined the Rehn Society as a bronze member. Hamilton received a bachelor's degree in finance from SIUC in 1988.

Hamilton is a managing director and head of investment grade and high yield corporate floating rate loan trading for Banc of America Securities LLC and a senior vice president at Bank of America, NA.

He joined the bank in 1997 and is responsible for a team of traders, research analysts and loan closers who make up one of the largest and most active loan trading desks in the market. The group trades and actively manages a $1.2 billion proprietary trading book comprised of private corporate loans.

Hamilton previously managed Banc of Boston Securities' par and distressed loan trading business and worked in the loan syndications business at Continental Bank in Chicago.

He began his career at First Options of Chicago as a clerk on the floor of the Mercantile Exchange and later served as a salesperson for the firm in its Tokyo office.

Marvin K. Kaiser of St. Louis advanced to the level of bronze member. He is a 1963 SIUC graduate with a bachelor's degree in accounting.

Kaiser is executive vice president and chief administrative officer for DOE Run Co. in St. Louis. His duties include heading the company's sales, human resources, information technology and legal operations.

Kaiser has more than 20 years experience in the mining industry, including serving as vice president and CFO for Amax Gold Inc. in Golden, Colo., and in various positions with Ranchers Exploration & Development Corp. in Albuquerque, N.M.

At SIUC, he serves on the School of Accountancy's advisory board and he became a member of the college's Hall of Fame in 1990.

Gordon R. and Sharon D. Teel of Atlanta, Ga., advanced to the level of bronze benefactor. Gordon Teel is a 1967 graduate of SIUC with a degree in accounting, and Sharon received her bachelor's degree in education from SIUC the same year.

Gordon Teel became CEO at Georgian Bancorporation Inc. and Georgian Bank in 2003 as the business adopted a new plan and received $50 million in new capital. By January 2004, the two asset bases had reached $305 million, personnel had grown to 42, one new office had opened and three more were in the process of opening and the search was under way for 30 additional team members.

Previously Teel was chairman and CEO at Community Bank Capital Corp., Synovus Financial Corp. and G. Teel Enterprises Inc., and group executive vice president at the Atlanta-based C&S/Sovran Corp.

Early in his career, Teel founded Teel, Heller, & Wenzel, a CPA firm with more than 20 professionals and a wide range of clientele. TH&W was later acquired by Ernst & Young, where Teel became the southeastern regional financial services partner.

Donald A. "Don" Williams of San Diego, Calif., advanced to the bronze member level. He is a 1979 SIUC graduate with a bachelor's degree in accounting. He has 24 years of experience serving clients in the high tech and life sciences industries as well as various managerial roles.

Williams began his career at Ernst & Young, working up through the ranks until he became a partner in the San Diego office in 1992. He began his career in Atlanta, transferred to Nashville, Tenn., as office managing partner, then went on to Cincinnati where he was managing partner for the assurance and advisory business services.

He is currently Ernst & Young's leader of both the Pacific Southwest area emerging growth markets and the Venture Capital Advisory Group; he previously was the southeast area leader of entrepreneurial services.

Williams is also a member of the board of directors of the San Diego Venture Group, a networking forum for entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and advisers.

Cultivating resources is among the goals of Southern at 150: Building Excellence Through Commitment, the blueprint for the development of the University as it approaches its 150th anniversary in 2019.