Olin School presents Distinguished Alumni Awards, Dean’s Medal

The Olin School of Business honored five individuals with Distinguished Alumni Awards at its 18th annual Distinguished Alumni Dinner May 5 at The Ritz-Carlton in Clayton.

The school also presented the Dean’s Medal to Art and Marge McWilliams.

Distinguished Alumni Awards were presented to C. Donald Dorsey, Eugene M. O’Neill, Sandra A. VanTrease, Robert L. Virgil and A. Greig Woodring.

Dorsey, retired executive vice president of PETsMART Inc., earned a bachelor of science in business administration in 1964.

He retired in 1999 and is an investor for development-stage retail and consumer-related companies, helping them to develop and execute real-estate strategies, raise capital and manage growth.

He is a business adviser for Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance Inc. and Five Below Inc., a startup retail dollar store for teens. He also is a founding director of Towne Bank of Arizona.

O’Neill, retired chairman, president and chief executive officer of General Grocer Co., earned a bachelor of science in business administration in 1949.

He was president of General Grocer from 1960 until 1983, when, as the 10th-largest privately owned company in Missouri, it was sold. General Grocer became well-known for developing companies with innovative retail formats, including Save-a-Lot Ltd. and Shop ‘N Save Warehouse Food Stores.

In 1983, O’Neill founded Tyben Consulting Co. For the next 15 years, he worked with mergers and acquisitions of food distributors throughout the country.

VanTrease, president and chief executive officer of UNICARE, earned a master of business administration degree in 1992.

In 2002, she was named the first president of UNICARE, a national life- and health-insurance company with more than $2 billion in revenues, providing a comprehensive array of health-care plans and specialty services to more than 1.7 million members.

VanTrease also served as president and chief executive officer of RightCHOICE, where she helped the company generate premium revenue growth and improve service while lowering overhead in one of the most competitive markets in the country.

Virgil, Ph.D., a limited partner in Edward Jones, earned a master of business administration degree and a doctorate in business administration in 1960 and 1967, respectively.

After a 35-year career at Washington University, where he served as dean of the Olin School from 1977-1993 and as executive vice chancellor for university relations, he accepted a new challenge by becoming a general partner in Edward Jones, with responsibility for management development.

In the past decade, Edward Jones has more than tripled in size, serving nearly 6 million customers in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

Woodring, president and chief executive officer of Reinsurance Group of America (RGA), earned a master of business administration degree in 1989.

RGA has subsidiaries or branch offices in 14 countries and is the recognized leader in the global life-reinsurance industry, with more than $1.3 trillion of life insurance in force and assets of more than $12 billion.

The company was named to the Forbes 400 Platinum list of the Best Big Companies in America for the third consecutive year.

Art and Marge McWilliams are St. Louis natives and share an abiding commitment to the University and its students.

Art McWilliams earned a bachelor of business administration degree from the University in 1949. Marge McWilliams earned a bachelor of business administration degree from Saint Louis University.

As scholarship sponsors at the Olin School, the McWilliamses set an extraordinary standard, sponsoring three endowed and two annual scholarships and providing leadership in attracting vital support for the school and its students.

They also take a close interest in each of their scholarship students and offer personal encouragement that often lasts far beyond graduation.

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