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2012 Distinguished Alumni

Awarded on September 22, 2012

Jim Weafer first attended Brescia College from 1970-1975. He later received his degree in accounting from Brescia University in 2002. He has served on many boards and committees including the River Park Fund Raising Committee, Brescia’s President’s Advisory Board and the Finance Committee. He has received awards including the Chamber of Commerce Member of the Year. He is also a member of the Alumni Association serving as president from 2011-2012. Weafer is self-employed as a Financial Planner. He is married to Dixie Weafer. They have two daughters.

J.C. Hagan received his business degree from Brescia College in 1968. He went on to receive an MBA from St. Louis University. He has served in the Navy and taught classes at Washington University as well as taught management courses to all levels of Monsanto management. He retired from Monsanto after 28 years as IT Director at the age of 55. He is currently a Disaster Reservist for the Small Business Administration helping people involved in natural disasters. He is married to Distinguished Alumna 2000, Suzanne Hagan. They have three children and six grandchildren.

Mary Hilda McFarland graduated from Brescia College with a teaching degree in 1962. She taught at the Mount Saint Joseph Academy from 1963-1967 and at Owensboro Catholic High School from 1967-2009. She has received awards such as Outstanding Owensboro Diocese Teacher of the Year, Owensboro Catholic Schools Saint Ursula Golden Key, Coca-Cola Educator of Distinction and the Brescia College Alumni Father Saffer award. She has served several years on the St. Stephen Cathedral Parish Council serving one year as president.


 Awarded on April 28, 2012

Distinguished AlumniLarry Conder graduated from Brescia University in 1983 with a Business Administration degree. He went on to receive his Master of Business Administration from Murray State University. Larry worked for Texas Gas for 15 years before opening his own company, Paragon Gas Services, as an independent consultant for the Public Energy Authority of Kentucky (PEAK). He assists municipalities in acquiring their natural gas requirements.

Larry and his wife Rosemary live in Owensboro and have six children and ten grandchildren. Together, Larry and Rosemary are the owners of Riverwalk Properties, LLC. Over the past ten years, the Conders have purchased property in downtown Owensboro, focusing on revitalization.

They own The Crowne at 107, The Crème Coffee House, the Smith-Werner Building, 221 St. Ann Street, The Inquirer Building, and 122/124 West 2nd Street. Larry says he and his wife are committed to preserving the past in order to promote the future of the community.

Distinguished AlumniSister Ruth Gehres graduated from Brescia College in 1962 with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She then went on to earn a Ph.D. in English from Saint Louis University in 1968.  For nearly 30 years she served at Brescia in various capacities, including as English professor, Chair of the English Department/Humanities Division, and Alumni Director. In 1986 she started a nine year run as President of Brescia College. Afterword, Sister Ruth served at Saint Meinrad College, worked with the Sisters of Saint Benedict in Ferdinand, IN, and was the Assistant Director/Director of Communications for the Ursuline Sisters of Mount Saint Joseph for six years.

Throughout her ministry at Brescia, Sister Ruth was involved in public relations and writing projects, including the founding of the Brescia NOW! magazine. She edited the college’s Self-Study for Reaffirmation of Accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (1978), which was successful. She was also involved in writing projects in her Ursuline Congregation and in the local community.

Sister Ruth was one of the first three women invited to join the Owensboro Rotary Club. She served on the Owensboro Citizens Committee on Education and the boards of Leadership Owensboro and Junior Achievement, and on the Saint Meinrad Board of Overseers. A lover of music, she sang with the Owensboro Diocesan Choir and various choral groups. She was a member of the Owensboro Friendship Force and of the first Sister City Delegation from Owensboro to Olomouc, Czech Republic.

In July 2012 Sister Ruth will celebrate her 60th jubilee as an Ursuline Sister of Mount Saint Joseph. Since 2007 she has ministered at Casa Ursulina, an educational, social, and spiritual ministry with women of low income in Chillán, Chile.

Distinguished AlumniTerrance (Terry) Jones graduated from Brescia University in 1968 with a Bachelor of Science in History. He then went on to graduate from the University of Louisville School of Law in 1972. He is licensed to practice in both Kentucky and Florida. He currently practices in Orange, Park, FL specializing in marital and family law, appellate practice, bankruptcy, child custody, personal injury and criminal practice.              

Terry served twice as president of the Clay County Bar Association and was Master of the Family Law Inns of Court for the Florida 4th Judicial Circuit. He is currently on the board of The Way Free Medical Clinic, past president of the Clay County Sertoma Service Club, past chairman of the Board for Clay County YMC, and past board member of the Clay County Mental Health Board.

He is the recipient of the 4th Judicial Circuit Pro-Bono Award for work with the Guardian Ad Litem Program (CASA) and the recipient of the Pro-Bono Award for Clay County. He has served on numerous political action and community service committees and provides volunteer legal service to local church and civic groups.

Terry has been married to Betty Downs Jones for 40 years and they have two children, Terrance Allen Jones, an architect in New York City, and Lauren Jones Chadwick, the Company Manager for the San Francisco Ballet.