Twelve to Receive University of Scranton’s O’Hara Awards

Jun 3, 2011

The University of Scranton will present its annual Frank J. O’Hara Awards to 12 alumni during Alumni Reunion Weekend June 10-12.

The O’Hara Awards, named for a late administrator who faithfully served the University for 53 years, are the highest honor bestowed jointly by the University and its Alumni Society. The awards recognize Scranton graduates and others who have achieved distinction in their professional or personal endeavors.

The 2011 recipients and the categories in which they were nominated are as follows.

        Joseph A. Bertolino, Ed. D., of Scranton’s graduate class of 1986, will receive the award for Education. Since 2004, he has served as the vice president for enrollment management and student affairs and chair of the Department of Student Personnel at Queens College/City University of New York. Prior to his arrival at Queens, he served as the dean for community development at Barnard College of Columbia University, and has worked in the state higher education systems of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. A resident of Flushing, N.Y., Dr. Bertolino is an author, lecturer and teacher who has presented at more than 600 colleges and conferences nationwide. Passionate about student affairs, he has conducted research in student immigration, campus community development, campus social change, leadership development, service learning, multicultural world views and LGBTQ student issues.

        Rosemary Broderick, of the class of 1976 and graduate classes of 1980 and 1989, will receive the award for Community Service. A Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, Broderick is corporate executive of Advanced Imaging Specialists, a comprehensive diagnostic imaging service in Northeastern Pennsylvania. A resident of Clarks Summit, she is active in the Radiology Business Management Association (RBMA) and served on its national board of directors. She co-chairs the RBMA’s National Programs Committee and is vice president of its five-state northeast regional chapter. Active in community service for more than 30 years, Broderick was the first female president of the Scranton Club and chaired the inaugural Komen Race for the Cure of Breast Cancer in Northeastern Pennsylvania. A longstanding member of the Scranton Kiwanis Club, she serves on several community boards including the Scranton Area Foundation, Salvation Army, Lackawanna County Planning Commission and United Neighborhood Centers, and has received several prestigious leadership and community service awards.

        John D. Dionne, of Scranton’s class of 1986, who also received an honorary degree from Scranton in 2010, will receive the award for Management. A senior managing director of the Blackstone Group, Dionne serves as a member of its private equity investment committee and as global head of business development and investor relations. He originally joined Blackstone in 2004 as the founder and chief investment officer of the Blackstone Distressed Securities Fund. Dionne is a past chair of The University of Scranton’s Board of Trustees, a co-chair of the President’s Business Council and member of the executive committee of Scranton’s Pride, Passion, Promise Campaign. In 2008, the University named the football-field-sized green on its campus in honor of him and his wife, Jackie Rasieleski Dionne, R.N., of Scranton’s class of 1989, A resident of Wesport, Conn., Dionne was among the 38 successful individuals profiled by Ronald Shapiro in The New York Times bestseller “Dare to Prepare: How to Win Before You Begin.”

        Arlene V. Drack, M.D., of the class of 1981, will receive the award for Medicine. Listed in the Best Doctors in America, Dr. Drack is associate professor of ophthalmology and pediatrics at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. She holds the Ronald Keech Professorship in Pediatric Genetic Eye Disease, directs the pediatric electroretinogram service and directs a research laboratory that focuses on finding treatments for untreatable causes of blindness in children. A recipient of a Presidential Scholarship to The University of Scranton, she received her medical degree from the Pennsylvania State University, Hershey, then trained in ophthalmology at Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. A resident of Coralville, Iowa, she has also completed fellowships in inherited eye diseases at Johns Hopkins University, and in pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus, followed by molecular ophthalmic genetics, at the University of Iowa.

        John J. Fendrock, D.P.S., of Scranton’s class of 1948, will receive the award for Arts and Letters. On his mission to obtain an education, Dr. Fendrock overcame several obstacles: a demanding work schedule, with Frank O’Hara scheduling classes to accommodate him; hitchhiking to and from work and school; and serving in World War II. A resident of Ridgewood, N.J., he received his master’s degree from Syracuse University and earned a Doctor of Professional Studies at Pace University. Working in the electronics industry, Dr. Fendrock contributed to the U.S. space program and the military. His commitment to education led him to teach at Rutgers University and Montclair State University. He has written articles for the Harvard Business Review and six books on the subjects of management and history – with his seventh book in progress.

        Robert L. McKeage, Ph.D., of the class of 1971, will receive the award for University Service. A distinguished professor who has served as a faculty member at Scranton for more than 40 years, Dr. McKeage is the director of the University’s Business Leadership Honors Program and an associate professor of marketing/management in the Kania School of Management. He played a key role in the development of Scranton’s Business Leadership Honors Program, a prestigious two-year program that has graduated more than 200 elite students. An award-winning, dedicated faculty member, who always places student learning first, Dr. McKeage has received several teaching accolades, including the Alpha Sigma Nu’s Edward Gannon, S.J., Award for Teaching, the Kania School of Management’s Student’s Choice Award for Teaching, and the Provost’s Enhancement Award for Excellence in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. Dr. McKeage resides in Scranton and serves on several regional non-profit boards.

        Geno Merli, M.D., of Scranton’s class of 1971, will receive the award for Medicine. Board certified in Internal Medicine, Dr. Merli is senior vice president & chief medical officer at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and co-director of the Jefferson Vascular Center. A resident of Haddonfield, N.J., he is a nationally recognized expert in the areas of prophylaxis for and management of deep-vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism (DVT/PE), as well as for the medical consultation of surgical patients. Dr. Merli serves on the editorial board for Journal of the Society of Hospital Medicine and Hospitalist News, is the editor-in-chief of Hospital Practice, and is a reviewer for several other medical journals. He is co-editor, with Howard H. Weitz, M.D., of the third edition of “Medical Management of the Surgical Patient,” and co-chairs the Jefferson-Mayo Clinic national course on the perioperative care of the surgical patient with medical problems. Dr. Merli is a fellow of the American College of Physicians, Society of Hospital Medicine, and Society of Vascular Medicine.

        Patricia Moran, Esq., of the class of 1981, will receive the award for Law. A partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, one of the world’s leading corporate law firms, she handles mergers and acquisitions (M&A), private equity, restructuring, corporate finance, and general corporate transactions; advises clients on matters of corporate governance; is actively involved in the firm’s hiring and retention efforts; and is a member of the firm’s diversity committee. She has been recognized as a corporate/M&A leader in her field in the 2011 edition of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business. Moran served two terms as a trustee of The University of Scranton, including one term as vice chair, and is a member of the President’s Business Council. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Catholic Big Sisters and Big Brothers and resides in Manhattan.

        Margaret Schaefer, of Scranton’s class of 1981, will receive the award for Government Service. As a senior policy advisor with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, she focuses on issues related to disaster preparedness, response and recovery with respect to ensuring that emergency management activities respect the civil rights and civil liberties of all populations and do not discriminate. A resident of Bowie, Md., Schaefer contributes to the development of national policy and guidance and has worked with White House staff to integrate civil rights principles into national disaster-related doctrine. In 2008, she received the Secretary’s Award for DHS Team Excellence. Prior to serving with the DHS, she was employed at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), where she was a 2006 recipient of the HHS Secretary’s Distinguished Service Award in recognition of work accomplished while deployed to New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.

        Dennis M. Size, of the class of 1976, will receive the award for Arts and Letters. A resident of Douglaston, N.Y., Size is the vice president of design of the largest lighting design company in the country, Lighting Design Group, which specializes in television broadcast studio design/installation and show lighting for television productions around the world. He has received many broadcasting awards and is a three-time recipient of the prestigious Emmy Award for Outstanding Lighting Design. He has been nominated 10 times. Size has worked on hundreds of television productions including: Oprah, Good Morning America, 20/20, All My Children, One Life to Live, Martha Stewart Living and Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve. He has worked with every U.S. President since Ronald Reagan, and has designed for network news coverage for every Presidential Convention since 1992. Size designed the lighting for many internationally televised specials as well, including the funeral of Pope John-Paul in Rome, and most recently, the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton in London. He has also designed productions for The University of Scranton Players, and in 1998, he received an Alumni Achievement Award from the University.

        Joseph F. Weiss, Ph.D., of Scranton’s class of 1961, will receive the award for Science and Technology. A resident of Kensington, Md., Dr. Weiss is a health scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and program manager for the U.S.-supported studies of health effects in the Japanese atomic bomb survivors. He is also a subject matter expert in radiobiology and medical countermeasures for radiation exposure. His approximately 100 research publications include co-editorship of three books on the treatment of radiation injury. After obtaining his Ph.D. from The Ohio State University, he continued his research on lipid metabolism as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Milan, Italy. His research on brain cholesterol metabolism broadened into clinical research as a faculty member at New York University, where he and his wife, Elvira, developed new experimental models for brain tumor research. Dr. Weiss has been active in educational and interfaith activities in Montgomery County, Md., and for 17 years has coordinated the local Week of Prayer for Christian Unity observance.

        Shirley J. Yee, Ph.D., of the class of 1981, will receive the award for Education. A resident of Seattle, Wash., Dr. Yee is associate professor of the Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies Department at the University of Washington, Seattle, where she has taught since 1988. Dr. Yee chaired the Women Studies Department from 1995-2001, during which time the department established the first doctoral degree program in women’s studies in the Pacific Northwest. Her first book, “Black Women Abolitionists: A Study in Activism, 1828-1860,” published in 1992, was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in History. Her new book, which is due in fall 2011, is titled “An Immigrant Neighborhood: Interethnic and Interracial Encounters in New York before 1930.” Most recently, Dr. Yee is preparing an article-length manuscript on women in the death care profession. In 2008, she was a finalist for the Distinguished Teaching Award at the University of Washington, and in 2001, she won the Distinguished Alumni Award from The Ohio State University. 
Back to Top