J. Lee McNeely ’62 Receives 2018 Legendary Lawyer Award

The Indiana Bar Foundation has announced that J. Lee McNeely has been chosen as the 2018 Legendary Lawyer of the Indiana Bar Foundation. The award honors a Fellow who demonstrates the highest principles and traditions of the legal profession, compassion through service to the public in the community in which he lives, and practical skills in the practice of law through a legal career of 50 years or more.

In addition to serving the public as an attorney, Lee has served the public and the legal profession through his actions in and out of the courtroom. He is the former president of the Indiana State Bar Association, the Indiana Continuing Legal Education Foundation, and Indiana Lawyer’s Commission. Lee has been honored with a Sagamore of the Wabash eight times by six different governors.

Lee will be honored on September 26, 2018 in Shelbyville.

Congratulations, Lee!

Indiana Bar Foundation

Ron Rychlak ’80 to lead National Academic Organization

Ron Rychlak, University of Mississippi law professor and Jamie L. Whitten Chair of Law and Government, will lead the Southeastern Association of Law Schools (SEALS) for the 2018-19 academic year. SEALS, which began in 1947 as a regional association of law schools that came together to host an annual meeting each summer, has grown beyond the Southeast and now includes more than 100 member schools.

“It’s both an honor and a challenge,” Ron said. He has been active in the organization for the last 20 years, serving on multiple committees. In 2012, the association honored him with its Distinguished Service Award. His goal as president is to continue to develop the organization, specifically helping young  faculty members who are just beginning their careers.

Following his 1980 graduation from Wabash, Ron received his J.D. from Vanderbilt University.

University of Mississippi News

Josh Owens ’07 Leads SupplyKick to #3 Spot on IBJ Fastest-Growing Companies List

SupplyKick CEO Josh Owens said 2017 was “a spectacular year” for his company, which helps businesses increase their presence and their sales on Amazon, eBay and He attributes the growth (revenue growth FY 2015 to 2017 was 335%) to an increase in existing products and partnerships, adding new partners and products, and bringing on new team members to improve growth, partner success, marketing, operations and logistics.

Josh worked at Angies’ List when it was going through national expansion, and at One Click Ventures as e-commerce boomed, so he’s aware of the need to manage growth. “The big thing I’m focused on right now is that we’ve got the right people in place who have the diversity of background and experiences and are excited about a high-growth environment.”

Each year, the Indianapolis Business Journal releases its list of the 25 fastest-growing companies based in the Indianapolis area. Companies are eligible if their revenue increased each fiscal year; revenue exceeded $1 million in fiscal year 2015; the company was an independent, privately held corporation, proprietorship or partnership; was founded before Jan. 1, 2015.

Indianapolis Business Journal

Nature Conservancy Appoints Doug Petno ’87 to Board

The Nature Conservancy has announced the recent appointment of Doug Petno as one of six new members of its global Board of Directors. “The Nature Conservancy has an inspiring mission to conserve lands and waters globally for the benefit of people and nature,” said Board Chair Tom Tierney. “We are innovative and collaborative problem-solvers, anchored in science and deeply committed to driving positive change in the world. These distinguished new Board members each bring an impressive range of experience and talent that will help us achieve our ambitious goals. We are deeply grateful for their commitment to help lead the Conservancy at this important time in history.”

Doug is the CEO of Commercial Banking at JPMorgan Chase, overseeing more than 9,000 professionals located in 120 locations across the U.S. and 19 major international cities. With more than 25 years of experience at the firm, he previously served as global head of J.P. Morgan’s Natural Resources Investment Banking Group, where he oversaw client coverage for oil and gas, power and utilities, chemicals, metals and mining, building products, and paper and packaging. Following his 1987 graduation from Wabash, Doug earned an MBA from the University of Rochester’s Simon School of Business.

The Nature Conservancy

Kip Chase ’03 named HR Leader for Lilly USA

Eli Lilly and Company has named Kip Chase Human Resources Leader for Eli Lilly USA. In his new role, Kip will oversee human resources for all commercial and medical organizations in the U.S.

Following his 2003 graduation from Wabash, Kip earned his MBA from Indiana University in 2009. Kip and his wife Nicole live in Indianapolis with their three sons.

Congratulations, Kip!

Jim Williams ’88 Named to Muncie School Board

Jim Williams will serve as one of seven members of the new Muncie Community Schools board. Due to financial difficulties, the district was placed under state control last year. The Indiana General Assembly approved handing oversight of the district over to the Ball State University Board of Trustees, which tasked the new board members with developing a long-term plan for the school corporation.

Following his 1988 graduation from Wabash, Jim received his J.D. from Indiana University. A Partner with DeFur Voran, he served as judge of the Union County Circuit Court from 1998-2004, and served as a Senior Judge until 2008.

Inside Indiana Business


Alonzo Weems ’92 Named Influential Black Lawyer

Alonzo Weems has been included in Savoy magazine’s annual listing of the most influential black lawyers in the United States. The listing showcases African-American men and women who have been recognized for their legal leadership and expertise in national and global corporations.

As Vice President and Deputy General Counsel of Eli Lilly and Co., Alonzo oversees Lilly’s corporate legal function – litigation, human resources, commercial transactions, regulatory and privacy – and serves as General Counsel for the company’s global biomedicines business unit.

Following his 1992 graduation from Wabash, Alonzo received his J.D. from Indiana University Maurer School of Law. He joined Lilly in 1997.

Congratulations, Alonzo!

Savoy Magazine

Damon R. Leichty ’94 Nominated to Federal Bench

President Donald Trump has nominated Damon Leichty ’94 to become a federal judge for the United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana. If confirmed, he will fill the vacancy left by the retirement of The Honorable Robert L. Miller, Jr., for whom Damon clerked earlier in his legal career.

“We are extremely proud of Damon and this extraordinary opportunity before him,” said Philip J. Faccenda, Jr., managing partner of Barnes & Thornburg’s South Bend office. “This is a distinct honor for those of us in the legal profession, and this nomination is a testament to Damon’s abilities and accomplishments as a lawyer at our firm. We look forward to supporting him throughout the confirmation process.”

Following his 1994 graduation from Wabash, Damon earned his J.D., cum laude, from Indiana University Maurer School of Law, where he won the school’s Sherman Minton Moot Court competition and served as a law journal editor. He also earned a master’s degree studying literature and law at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

Congratulations, Damon!

South Bend Tribune

Roy Sexton ’95 named “Unsung Legal Hero”

Michigan Lawyers Weekly has announced that Roy Sexton ’95 was selected one of the 26 members of their second class of “Unsung Legal Heroes.” This program honors law firm employees who have consistently gone above and beyond the call of duty, often behind the scenes. This award is reserved for the state’s most talented and dedicated legal support professionals.

Roy is director of marketing with Kerr Russell PLC in Detroit.

Congratulations, Roy!


Brandon Roop ’06 to lead new division of Donaldson Capital Management

Brandon Roop will lead the newly created Retirement Plan Services division at Donaldson Capital Management of Evansville, IN. Sr. Portfolio Manager and VP of Institutional Services, Brandon has led the effort to officially launch this new division of DCM.  He has spent the past several years building his knowledge base and researching the Retirement Plans industry in order to determine how DCM can provide the most value.

Following his 2006 graduation from Wabash, Brandon attended the Indiana University Kelley School of Business where he earned his MBA with an emphasis in finance. In 2013, Brandon successfully completed the CFP Board’s requirements for certification and is a Certified Financial Planner™ professional.  In December 2016, he completed the Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist professional designation program through the College for Financial Planning and is a CRPS professional ®.  As a part of this accomplishment, Brandon will be in charge of leading DCM into the significantly important realm of pre-retirement investment management for business owners and their employees.

Congratulations, Brandon!

Donaldson Capital Management