At the Alumni Reunion Luncheon at Homecoming Saturday, Oct. 17, President Gayle D. Beebe presented the 2009 Alumnus of the Year award to Dave Odell ’89. The former basketball player, successful businessman and adjunct professor in the economics and business department has served as athletic director since January. He chaired the Warrior Sports Advisory Board and initiated a student-athlete mentor program. “Dave is a wonderful example of a person who believes in giving his time, talent and treasure to his alma mater,” says Teri Bradford Rouse, senior director of alumni and parent relations. “He is committed to the success of others, hiring more than 100 Westmont alumni at his various businesses in the last 16 years.” Odell is involved with several successful business ventures, including TynanGroup Inc., Anchor Point IT Solutions, and MedBridge Development Company LLC, which employ 25 Westmont graduates.
“What an honor it is to be recognized for service to an institution committed to a cause so important: leading and nurturing growth in the lives of college students,” Odell said in accepting the award.
“What is it that compels us to serve our alma mater? During my first 10 years as an alumnus, my limited service and gifts grew out of what the college had done for me. I was thankful for what I had learned and the relationships I had developed as a student. Over the last few years, I’ve had the opportunity to step into a deeper relationship with Westmont. The mission of the college has become even more visible to me: We are affecting positive change in the lives of young adults so they will become lifelong learners and the Christian leaders of the next generation.
“During my business career I’ve often been disappointed with organizations when the day-to-day operations don’t match up with my perception of their quality. But I like what I see at Westmont: a united commitment to the mission of the college and our faith in Jesus Christ. I’ve seen quality, professionalism and a powerful spirit of service toward each student on campus. I’m investing daily in a quality institution that has assembled a gifted and talented team to shape the lives of the students we serve.”