Walsh College

Leadership Awards Dinner

2015 Leadership Awards Dinner Presented by Lear Corporation


Despite a snowy evening over 300 Walsh alumni and friends turned out for the Leadership Awards Dinner.  The event took place on November 21, 2015 at the MGM Grand Detroit.  

Congratulations to our 50/50 raffle winner Patrick Lindsey!


Rebecca Sorensen, BAC '85, Senior Vice President, Wealth Management Wealth Advisor, UBS; will receive the Distinguished Alumni Award. With more than 25 years investment industry experience, she is a CPA, Certified Financial Planner, and Certified Investment Management Analyst. Additionally, she has completed the Wharton School’s IMCA program on Alternative Investments.  In 2001, Leadership Oakland recognized Rebecca as one of its 2001 Distinguished Leadership Award recipients in the individual category. She is also a recipient of the 2003 State of Michigan Governor’s Award for Volunteerism for her work with Lighthouse PATH.  Most recently, she has received the national distinction of being named a member of the 2014 Financial Times Top 100 Women Financial Advisers.

Brian Pilarski, MSM '07, Business Insurance Broker, Brown & Brown Insurance; will receive the Distinguished Graduate of the Last Decade Award.  He led the Walsh College Alumni Association for two consecutive terms: the first and only president to do so in the Association’s history.  He continues his commitment on the Walsh College Foundation Board as its youngest director since March 2013. Pilarski has been recognized with the Association of Fundraising Professionals distinguished volunteer award. 

Lori Blaker, Owner & CEO, TTi Global; will receive the Jeffery W. Barry Award for Educational Excellence & Community Service.  Under Lori's leadership, TTi Global, a provider of business performance solutions based in Rochester Hills, has grown worldwide with offices in the U.S., U.K., Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, India, Japan, Mexico, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, and Venezuela.  It is one of the top 25 woman-run businesses in the U.S. as recognized by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (2008 and 2009). Lori and TTi Global have also been the recipients of numerous local and national business awards.

William Jones, President, Focus:HOPE, will also receive the Jeffery W. Barry Award for Educational Excellence & Community Service.  William became CEO of Focus: HOPE, a Detroit-based, non-denominational, non-profit organization which provides education and training for underrepresented minorities and others, in 2009 after an extensive career with Chrysler and Chrysler Financial.  Under his leadership, Focus: HOPE has expanded services to the community through its three primary areas of focus: a food program, education and training programs, and community development initiatives.  William has placed a high priority on excellence in education and, in particular, supported academic achievement and opportunities for children growing up in the neighborhoods around Focus: HOPE.

A native of Hampton, VA, Jones is a member of the Walsh College Board of Trustees.  He is also a member of the Governor's Talent Investment Board, and the boards of directors for the Detroit Regional Chamber, Forgotten Harvest, and Eastern Market.

“We will recognize four exceptional people who make extraordinary contributions every day to their firms, to the community, and to Walsh College,” said Stephanie Bergeron, president and CEO, Walsh College.  “Through their example, they inspire excellence and bring energy to important initiatives in the southeast Michigan community and beyond.”  

All funds raised from the event will benefit the Jeffery W. Barry Endowed Scholarship and the Leadership Awards Scholarship.  We have several sponsorship opportunities available.

For more information please contact Andrea Richards in the Development Office at 248-823-1204.