Outstanding Alumni Honored During Homecoming


School News

With notable accomplishments ranging from professional to personal, Walsh University honored several of its outstanding alumni during its annual recognition dinner on Friday, October 19.

As one of the most anticipated events of Homecoming Weekend, members of the Walsh community gathered together to celebrate this year’s honorees (Full bios below).

  • Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient: Dan Cunningham ’71
  • Professional Achievement Award Recipient: Frank D'Angelo ’85
  • Distinguished Service Award Recipient: Ken Shook ’05
  • Outstanding Achievement Award Recipients: Jackie Novak ’88 & Gary Ranalli ’68
  • Young Alumni Award Recipient: Steven Weigand ’10

The Lifetime Achievement Award was established in 2004 to recognize individuals who have given a lifetime of service to Walsh and to its alumni. This year’s recipient, Dan Cunningham, graduated with a bachelor of arts in Spanish from Walsh College in 1971.  He went on to earn a law degree at the University of Akron School of Law and has been a licensed attorney in the State of Ohio since 1978.

In 2009, after 30 years of service, Dan retired from Akron General Health System.  At the time of his retirement he was the Senior Vice President for Legal Services.

Dan’s community service includes time and talents devoted to a wide range of organizations, including the City of Stow Board of Zoning Appeals, Summit County Metro Transit Authority, Ignatian Volunteer Corps of Catholic Charities of Summit County, Heart to Heart Communications, the Kelly Reeves Memorial Foundation and the Holy Family Parish Endowment Committee and Finance Council.

Before he joined the team at Akron General, Dan served as the Assistant Director of Admissions at Walsh.  He is a past president of the Alumni Association, recipient of the Outstanding Alumni Award in 1985, and just recently retired from 12 years of service on the Walsh University Board of Directors, where his tenure included terms as vice chair and chair of the Board.

Currently, he is an adjunct professor of business ethics in the DeVille School of Business, a post he has held since 2009.

Since his graduation in 1971, Dan has remained connected with Walsh.  He has never wavered from his commitment to seeing his alma mater be successful nor has he ever faltered in his work to ensure that future generations of Walsh students - future alumni - have the same opportunities to engage and connect with the University that he has had.

Professional Achievement Award Recipient 

Frank D’Angelo graduated from Walsh College in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in management.  He was a non-traditional student, attending classes in the evening and working at Diebold during the day. 

D’Angelo’s career spans 45 years in the financial services, digital banking and payments industries. He currently serves as Executive Vice President/President of NCR Banking and is Chairman of the Board of Evertec, a transaction and payments processing company in Latin America and the Caribbean. He is a past Chairman of the Electronic Funds Transfer Association and served on the Payments Advisor Counsel of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

Previously, he was President of Monitise Americas, Inc., a provider of mobile banking, payments and commerce networks. Prior to that post, Frank was Executive Vice President of the Payments Solutions Group at Fidelity National Information Services and head of Payments and Digital Banking at Metavante Technologies. He also held several executive positions at Diebold, including CEO of Diebold Mexico, living in Mexico City.

Frank has been a good friend to Walsh University, supporting scholarships, veterans programming, facilities and the Student Managed Investment Portfolio, a group of student-investors who are mentored and challenged to learn about financial markets and investing with hands-on experience.  He even arranged for the group to visit the New York Stock Exchange where the students were front and center for the closing bell.

He is a member of the Walsh University Board of Directors, chairing the Finance and Audit Committee, and a veteran of the United States Air Force.

Distinguished Service Award Recipient

Ken Shook ’05 has a bachelor of arts in management and an MBA from Walsh University.  He has been employed by the Leeman family at Brewster Cheese Company for 42 years and currently serves as the supply chain manager.  His work includes managing the supply of raw milk for daily production of Swiss cheese and selling all powdered products produced at the Brewster drying facility.

Shortly after graduating from Walsh, Shook joined the alumni board, which he served on for several years, and he currently sits on the Walsh University Advisory Board, regularly attending meetings and offering support and insight.

Ken is a dedicated and frequent Walsh volunteer. He has helped organize and execute Viva Walsh Vegas and alumni golf outings.  Ken is also a regular guest lecturer at the annual Professor for a Day program and enjoys offering taste-testing of Brewster Swiss cheese and Cheese-It Crackers, all while sharing his experiences at Walsh and in the workplace with current students.

Outstanding Achievement Award Recipients

Jackie Novak graduated from Walsh College in 1988 with a degree in biology.  While on campus she participated in Women’s Cross Country and Track and was inducted into the Walsh Athletic Wall of Fame in 2000. She furthered her education at The University of Akron where she earned a master of science and at The University of Cincinnati, College of Medicine, where she earned her PhD.

In 2005, Dr. Novak joined the Walsh faculty from the University of Pittsburgh where she served as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences and with the Magee-Women’s Research Institute.  She is a nationally-recognized scientist who, among her many other accomplishments, has secured a three-year research grant from the National Institutes of Health to investigate the effects of the ovarian hormone relaxin in the treatment of post-menopausal coronary artery dysfunction.  That was the first major federal grant in Walsh history.

Currently, Dr. Novak is a Professor of Biology and the Chair of Walsh’s Mathematics and Sciences division, which serves students through outstanding academic and research experiences in mathematics, computer science, and the natural sciences. 

Her commitment to excellence in her profession and service to Walsh University is demonstrated through her work with colleagues and students. 

Gary Ranalli is a life-long Stark County resident and attended St. Anthony’s Elementary School, Central Catholic High School, and Walsh College.  He graduated in 1968 from Walsh with a bachelor of arts in accounting and, after graduation, taught at St. Joseph Elementary School in Alliance. 

In 1971, Gary was hired by the City of Canton as an accountant and then was promoted to budget director.  From 1979 to 2000, Gary was the business manager for Stark County Board of MRDD, and even served as superintendent for one year.  In 2000, he retired from his professional life, but not from giving back to his community.

Gary has been deeply involved in several causes, including the Canton Ex-Newsboys, a group of men who raise money and awareness regarding basic needs of children.  Their motto is "No Child Shall Miss School for Need of Shoes or Clothing," and Gary has been a loyal and active member for 50 years, even serving as president and chairing committees over the decades.

Gary has also volunteered his time for organizations such as United Way, Central Catholic High School, Pro-Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week, and his alma mater Walsh University.  Gary’s contributions to Walsh have been so diverse that he even played host to the Swedish football team when Walsh served as the site for the Junior World Football Championship.

Gary is also devoted to his Church, St. Anthony’s All Saints Parish, where he has served on the Pastoral Council and as a Eucharistic Minister.

Young Alumni Award Recipient

Steven Weigand is a 2010 graduate of Walsh University with a bachelor of arts in finance and management, and minors in economics and English literature.  He is currently a Private Equity Senior Associate with PNC Erieview Capital, which he joined in 2014.  In his role at PNC, he is responsible for transaction execution, deal origination and portfolio maintenance.  Steve also has management responsibilities for 14 current portfolio companies.

Before joining PNC, Steve worked in the investment banking divisions of Boenning & Scattergood and Paragon Capital Group.  Steve started his career at Huntington National Bank as a commercial credit analyst and throughout his career in middle market private equity and investment banking has worked on over 65 completed merger and capital raise transactions representing $4.8 billion of enterprise value. 

As he has been building his successful career he has also remained an advocate and resource for Walsh University. He is a member of the Alumni Board of Trustees and chairs its Scholarship Committee.  In addition, Steve serves as an advisor for Walsh University’s Student Managed Investment Portfolio and has been a guest lecturer in finance and business courses on campus.