Robert J. Trulaske Sr., College of Business, University of Missouri

Mizzou Business News

2017 Citations of Merit recognize dedicated alumni and friends, awards recognize top faculty and students

Annually, the Trulaske College of Business hosts Honors Luncheon to recognize students, faculty, alumni and friends for their accomplishments. This year’s event welcomed a packed room at the Reynolds Alumni Center. Below is a list of some of the top awardees:

  • Emerging Leaders – Annemarie Daiker, Tyler Hoffmann
  • Alumnus of the Year – Charles Hunter 
  • Faculty Member of the Year – Joel Poor 
  • Staff Member of the Year – Stephanie Toigo 
  • Delta Sigma Pi Key – Pierce Ford
  • Student Leadership Awards – Greg Stringfellow, Tanner Stitzer, Ty Kapitzky, Jayla Books, Erica Morey
  • Recent Alumni Achievement Awards – Jennifer N. Landis and Morgan M. Schmit 
  • Trulaske College of Business Mid-Career Faculty Service Award –  Detelina Marinova, Michael O’Doherty 
  • Richard G. Miller Summer Scholars Award –  Jere Francis
  • Jeffrey E. Smith Summer Scholars Award – Inder Khurana 
  • Trulaske College of Business Summer Scholar Award – Murali Mantrala, Dezhi Yin
  • Raymond and Mary Ann O’Brien Excellence in Teaching Award – J. Scott Christianson
  • Bruce and Pam Walker Outstanding Faculty Service Award – J. Scott Christianson
  • Shelter Insurance Companies Teaching Excellence Award in Marketing – Peter Bloch

Additionally, the college awards up to ten Citations of Merit. Nominees for these prestigious awards are selected for their career accomplishments, involvement with the college through board and volunteer activities, student and graduate recruitment or other collaborative programs, and financial support of the college. The Faculty Policy Committee reviews each candidate and then the entire faculty votes on up to ten recipients. Up to two of the awards can be given to friends of the college in the form of Special Citations.

Citation of Merit recipients are recognized publicly at the Trulaske College of Business annual Honors Luncheon. Recently, the following dedicated alumni and friends were honored:

Philip Caster, II
BAcc ’89, Drury University  
MAcc ’90, University of Missouri
Assurance Partner
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

Phil has more than 25 years of experience providing assurance services primarily to public companies in the consumer and industrial products industry. He has extensive experience supporting his clients’ capital-raising transactions and is the risk management partner for PwC’s Missouri market. Phil is a CPA and serves as a member of the Board of Directors & Treasurer of Bellerive Country Club and is on the Board of Trustees of Drury University.

Phil is a 1990 graduate from the University of Missouri where he earned a Master’s of Accountancy. He continues his dedication to Mizzou as a member of the School of Accountancy Advisory Board and is one of PwC’s main on-campus recruiters. He also has judged case competitions and provided meaningful guest lectures to Accountancy students. Phil generously supports the Trulaske College of Business as a Davenport Society member. Additionally, he contributes to Mizzou through the Tiger Scholarship Fund.

Phil and his wife Lori (BSAcc ’88), a former School of Accountancy Advisory Board member and past recipient of the Citation of Merit, live in Ladue, Missouri. They are the proud parents of Ashley and Natalie.

Jay A. Dawdy
BSAcc ’89, University of Missouri
Gryphon Strategies 

Jay has over 20 years of experience in finance, accounting and investigative work in the United States and overseas. He has conducted a wide range of financial and fraud investigations and has worked extensively on due diligence inquiries and litigation support cases. 

He has been featured on television and radio, as well as in print, discussing a variety of investigative topics. Earlier in his career, Jay gained valuable experience in both corporate accounting and investment banking at IBM, JP Morgan and Lehman Brothers. Previously, Jay served as an instructor in financial statement fraud/forensic accounting at Baruch College. Today, he is a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) and a Certified Management Accountant (CMA). 

For the University of Missouri, Jay is the sponsor of the influential Dawdy Speaker Series, focused on exposing students to the risk and compliance area, including such topics as fraud examination, forensic investigations, as well as litigation and regulatory consulting. The series has attracted a number of high-profile speakers, including Jim Ratley, President, ACFE; Chris Koster, Missouri Attorney General; Ken Feinberg, US Paymaster and BP Oil Spill Claims Administrator; and Nicole Galloway, Missouri State Auditor, among others. The series is influential not only for its notable speakers, but also for the meaningful discussions between students, faculty, and alumni who attend. For his generosity, Jay is a member of the college’s Davenport Society. 

Brian B. Hansen
BS BA ’89, University of Missouri
MBA ’92, San Diego State University
Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer
Tandem Diabetes Care, Inc. 

Brian has served the healthcare field for 25 years, working for several leading industry diagnostic and pharmaceutical companies. Today, he is the Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer for Tandem Diabetes Care, a maker of insulin pumps for type 1 and type 2 diabetics. Prior to joining Tandem, Brian was Chief Commercial Officer at Adaptive Biotechnologies Corporation. 

Brian is a champion for Mizzou’s newly launched Center for Sales and Customer Development, where he serves as a board member. He also is a dedicated member of the Marketing Advisory Board. He has worked with many business students as a Professorfor-a-Day as well as the notable Vaughan Executive in Residence speaker in 2010. While at Mizzou, Brian was a member of the golf team under Hall of Fame coach Richard Poe. Today, he continues his commitment to the golf program. 

Brian lives in San Diego with his wife Kara, five children, and their yellow lab, Truman. They are members of the college’s 1914 Society. 

J. Kevin Jeffries
BS ’75, Missouri State University
MA ’77, University of Missouri
Vice President – Finance Services

As vice president for finance services, Kevin is responsible for leading and directing several departments including Billing Operations, Bill Remittance, Credit and Collections, Payroll, Accounts Payable, Sales Compensation, as well as the Finance Leadership Development Program. He serves as Chief of Staff for the CFO for AT&T and its subsidiaries. 

Kevin began his career at AT&T in St. Louis as a computer technician in 1977 and continued for six years in various IT related assignments, including database administration, capacity planning, and system programming. Kevin then progressed through a variety of financial, regulatory, HR, and payroll assignments in St. Louis, New Jersey and San Antonio. 

Kevin is a dedicated member of the Finance Advisory Board at the University of Missouri. In this role, he has worked to strengthen connections between AT&T and Mizzou. He shows his Tiger pride and generosity to the Trulaske College of Business as a member of the Davenport Society. Additionally, he serves on the MBA Advisory Board at the Michael Price School of Business at the University of Oklahoma. 

A native of Carthage, Missouri, Kevin earned a Master’s of Arts in Economics from the University of Missouri in 1977.  Kevin earned his undergraduate degree with a double major in mathematics and economics from Missouri State University in 1975. 

Kevin lives in Dallas, Texas with his wife Barbara. He has three grown daughters – Kate, Kelly and Lindsay. He is a lifetime St. Louis Cardinal Baseball fan and a shameless fan of the Mizzou Tigers.

Michael J. Owens
BS BA ’76, University of Missouri 
MA Sports Marketing ’80, Ohio University
MJ Owens Advisors LLC

Over the past 40 years, Mike has focused his career on sales, marketing and leadership. As President of MJ Owens Advisors LLC, he shares his branding experience with college athletics programs, including the Mizzou Athletics, as well as outdoors hunting and fishing companies. 

Mike retired as President of Gander Mountain Outdoors in 2015. During his time with the company, he led the outdoor retailer’s efforts to grow revenue and profitability. Prior to being named President in 2014, Mike was the COO and EVP in charge of revenue, operations, distribution, merchandising, online sales and marketing. 

He also spent 27 years with Anheuser-Busch Inc. in St. Louis. He held a number of key roles with the company, including Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Vice President of Business Operations, and numerous positions in marketing, including Budweiser Brand Director. Mike was a member of the company’s Management Committee and Strategy Committee. Over his career at AB, Mike was responsible for U.S. domestic revenue, wholesaler management, company owned distributorships and the AnheuserBusch financial plan. 

He is a proud member of the Davenport Society and has served on the Trulaske College of Business Strategic Development Board for the past five years. Mike is also an avid supporter of Tiger Athletics, is a Tiger Scholarship Fund member and football season ticket holder. 

Mike and his wife Lynne reside in Des Peres and are the parents of four daughters. As often as he can, Mike spends his free time in the outdoors enjoying golf, cycling, hunting and farming.

C. Bradford Richmond 
BS BA ’79, University of Missouri
Chief Financial Officer, Retired
Darden Restaurants, Inc. 

Brad is the former chief financial officer of Darden Restaurants, a Fortune 500 company, a Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For, a 25 Largest Private Employer in the United States and the world’s largest full-service restaurant company. 

Brad began his professional career as an intern at PricewaterhouseCoopers in St. Louis and then joined the firm upon graduation. In 1983, he joined General Mills, Inc., Restaurant Group at Casa Gallardo. Brad held a leadership role in the spin-off of the Restaurant Group, creating Darden Restaurants, Inc. in 1995. Brad completed a 33-year career at Darden, serving the last nine years as CFO, during which the company doubled in size. 

Brad is a dedicated advisory board member for the School of Accountancy in addition to his service at the Florida Institute of Chief Financial Officers and the University of Florida Institute for Sustainable Food Systems.  Brad is past vice-chair, executive committee member and audit committee chair for Florida’s Blood Centers, now named One Blood. 

Brad and his wife Nancy (BS BA ’77) generously support the college as Benefactors of the Davenport Society. They live in Orlando, Florida and enjoy traveling, especially to spend time with their three (Gator!) daughters, two sons-in-law and four grandchildren.


Wendy J. Henry
BS ’83, Illinois College
Managing Partner

Wendy is managing partner of BKD’s St. Louis and Decatur offices. She oversees the administration, planning and operations for approximately 130 personnel serving more than 4,500 business and individual clients. She also leads SKY, BKD’s firm-wide women’s initiative, which strengthens diversity, focusing on engaging and elevating women leaders. 

Wendy has more than 30 years of experience providing audit and consulting services to associations and membership organizations, foundations, colleges and universities, health care providers and other not-for-profit and charitable organizations. 

Wendy serves on the board of the United Way of Greater St. Louis, Mercy East Foundation and the American Heart Association, where she served as Chair of Go Red for Women. She is a member of the Regional Business Council where she co-chairs the higher education committee, and the audit committee for the St. Louis Zoo. Her recent honors include YWCA Corporate Leaders of Distinction and the St. Louis Business Journal’s Most Influential Woman.

A passionate supporter of the University of Missouri, she has developed a strong relationship between BKD and Mizzou, employing a large number of MU students. She is a dedicated member of the Trulaske College of Business Strategic Development Board and was the keynote speaker for the inaugural School of Accountancy Women’s Leadership Forum. 

Wendy and her husband Dave have two sons, Collin and Aaron, a daughter-in-law, Brianne, and grandson Jace. 

Denise U. Mills
Co-Founder and Chief Mindset Officer
The LeaderFuel Center 

Denise’s firm, the LeaderFuel Center, is a leadership development consultancy for Fortune 500 companies such as Toyota, DuPont, Amazon and Honeywell, as well as many accounting firms, law firms, national banks, credit unions and engineering firms nationwide. Additionally, LeaderFuel has developed a women’s leadership development program distributed worldwide through partners such as the US State Department, United Nation NGOs, the Committee of 200, Urban Land Institute, Women Leaders in College Sports, the YWCA, and in Kansas City, the Central Exchange. 

Denise facilitates leadership retreats, strategy sessions, executive round table discussions, and board meetings. As a serial entrepreneur, Denise has assisted over 1800 start-up businesses since 1999. She has been a guest speaker at the Trulaske College of Business and in 2016 was the keynote speaker for Mizzou’s New Admit Class in the School of Accountancy. 

Denise is founder of A Better KCK, a gang intervention program, and also gives back to the community through her service to Girl Scouts of NE KS and NW MO, Johnson County Library Foundation, Catholic Education Foundation, American Institute of Architects and United Way Women’s Leadership Council, among others. For her professional success and philanthropic commitment, Denise was awarded an Honorary Degree from the University of Northern Iowa. 

Denise is married to Mizzou alumnus Rick Mills and has five children and five grandchildren. In support of MU, they are members of the Davenport Society.