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Profiles of ability
and conviction


Pontius '55

Edgerton '70

Ogden '87

Martin '08

Packaging leader makes time, habit of servant leadership, too

Keith Pontius '55SERVANT LEADERS accept the responsibilities of leadership. They
focus on the needs of others and they
work for the common good.

Ever since Keith Pontius ’55 earned
his Manchester degree in accounting, he has used his time, treasure and talents to serve his alma mater, his church and the communities in which he has lived.

A leader in the packaging industry for more than 50 years, Pontius has had executive positions at several companies. He founded and remains in leadership of KP Packaging paper container company. The 57-year member of Lions Clubs International takes that organization’s motto – “We Serve” – very seriously. In addition to active club service, he was a district governor, district Lion of the Decade, and recipient of the Lions International Leadership Award and other honors.

His other contributions of service are considerable, too: Chamber of Commerce president, United Way chair and corporate, foundation and community board memberships. Always active in his Church of the Brethren congregations, Keith has served on the denomination’s General Board.

Manchester also is blessed with his service: 19 years on the Board of Trustees, eight as secretary. As a member of the Alumni Board, he led creation of the central Ohio alumni chapter. He helps with fundraising. The Pontiuses’ gift to the Students First! campaign provided the first floor of the Academic Center.

“Manchester has been good to me,” states a grateful Pontius, who will receive an Alumni Honor Award on May 30.




Sara Edgerton ’70, making history, the Manchester way

education often are guideposts in the
unexpected paths Manchester’s graduates take. That’s certainly true for Sara Edgerton ’70, who majored in history and became chief executive officer of a statewide health care provider.

Edgerton grew up in a Quaker family that valued education. Her arrival on campus in the 1960s was perfect timing for a history major to watch history unfold – civil rights,
women’s rights, the environment and issues of war and peace. She thrived amid the lively exchange of ideas nurtured by professors like David Waas, Eldon Burke and Ken Brown.

After Manchester, she taught social studies, launched entrepreneurial ventures and earned a master’s degree. While
working for the American Cancer Society, she met Indianapolis
oncologist Dr. William Dugan and, together, they founded Community Cancer Care Inc. It would become the largest provider of medical cancer care services in Indiana.

A longtime member of the Board of Trustees, Edgerton is a “big picture” thinker who asks such motivating questions as “How will this move Manchester forward?” She is the quintessential ambassador for Manchester and a leadership donor to Students First! and other fund-raising campaigns.

For making health care better and more accessible in Indiana, and for her steadfast support of Manchester, Sara Edgerton, class
of 1970, will receive an Alumni Honor Award on May 30.


Answering “a call of service,” Tim Ogden ’87 is the ultimate professor

Tim Ogden '87OUR FAVORITE PROFESSORS challenge us. They teach us character and perseverance and excellence. And, throughout our lives, we draw upon their wisdom to guide us.

For nearly a generation of Manchester students, Tim Ogden ’87 has been that challenging professor.

“Professor Ogden constantly looks for ways to better prepare students for life,” says Sarah Squires ’09 Richmond, an auditor for Steel Dynamics in Fort Wayne. “His influence has had a profound effect on me. I cannot thank him enough.”

Professor Ogden earned a degree in English at Manchester. Then came an MBA from Claremont Graduate University in California and a law degree from Indiana University.

He says his return to Manchester was “a call to service.” He came back to help Manchester students the way he had been helped – to give students the kinds of opportunities he had been given – and to honor faculty who served before him.

When Professor Ogden talks, people listen. His legal training provides valuable critical thinking at faculty meetings, says Professor Mary Plunkett ’83 Lahman. He is a leader among faculty, a mentor and a highly effective student recruiter.

He sets an example through his philanthropy, too. For years, he and his wife, Patty, have been generous supporters of Manchester students’ needs, contributing to The Manchester Fund, better learning spaces and a scholarship fund.

For his excellence as a professor and a colleague, and for answering his “call of service” to teach at Manchester, Professor Tim Ogden, Class of 1987, will receive an Alumni Honor Award on May 30.


Feeling the heat: Ben Martin ’08 knows his way around a fire

Ben Martin -08

BEN MARTIN’S SUMMER OF 2012 was hot, literally. While many tried to beat the heat and drought, Martin was fighting the flames of wildfires across the West. As a forestry technician on a Type II crew for the U.S. Forest Service, Martin was first on the scene of some of
2012’s most dangerous wildfires. (That’s Ben on the far left.)

When lightning ignited the forest surrounding retreat camps north of Colorado Springs, Colo., Martin’s team ran 3 miles of hose and set up more than 100 sprinklers to try to protect the area from the looming burn. A day later, after fire swept through, Eagle Creek Camp remained green amidst a charred and smoky forest. Then the wind shifted, fanning fires back toward the camp. Yet Eagle Creek remained green. The crew had done its job well.

As the fires raged on toward residential areas of Colorado Springs, Martin’s crew saw success again. Not a single home in their assigned area was lost. Thousands of other Colorado Springs homeowners weren’t as lucky.

Martin’s Manchester and service background drew him to forest firefighting. “If you go to Manchester and pay attention, you must find work that matters,” says Martin. “You will want to put your head on the pillow at night and say, ‘What I do matters.’”

Martin, a cum laude environmental studies and political science graduate, also worked with AmeriCorps on the Washington Conservation Corps. He is hoping to join the next level of forest firefighting, the “Hotshots” of the U.S. Forest Service.


So many Manchester stories to share; what
are yours?

from the president

Manchester, my home
Residence halls, dorms ... home away from home.

How we coach
The Spartan tradition: respect, accountability, commitment, focus ... and fun.

Head-first learning
Capitalizing on experience-based opportunities.

Bidding on memories
Alumni and friends gather for an auction and storytelling.

Philanthropy 101
Celebrating careers of Bob ’57 and Helen
Bollinger ’54 Hollenberg

Profiles of ability and conviction

“Hail to her majesty, Queen of the May!

Alumni Office