Ivy Tech honors Jean Neel as a ‘Benefactor of the Year’

Haynes International vice president recognized for Kokomo Region contributions

Ivy Tech Kokomo Region representatives Kelly Karickhoff, David Bathe, Benefactor of the Year Jean Neel, Michelle Simmons, Steve Daily, and Miriam Thomas

Ivy Tech Kokomo Region representatives Kelly Karickhoff, David Bathe, Benefactor of the Year Jean Neel, Michelle Simmons, Steve Daily, and Miriam Thomas

FRENCH LICK, Ind. — Jean Neal, vice president of Corporate Affairs for Haynes International Inc. based in Kokomo, is among the 14 nominees for the Ivy Tech Foundation Benefactor of the Year award who were recognized Sept. 29 at the foundation’s annual awards dinner at the West Baden Springs Hotel. Neal was nominated for the award for her many contributions to Ivy Tech’s Kokomo Region.

The Ivy Tech Foundation has honored individuals, corporations, or foundations since 2010, and recognizes those who have considerably impacted Ivy Tech communities and students. Great advances are possible at Ivy Tech through the support of the nominees through volunteer leadership and philanthropic service.

“The Kokomo Region is proud to have nominated Jean,” said David Bathe, chancellor of Ivy Tech’s Kokomo and Lafayette Region. “Since 2007, Jean has donated to a variety of Ivy Tech needs, including capital campaigns, unrestricted funds, classroom renovations, and several scholarships. In 2015, Jean established the Neel Family endowed scholarship and since then has added to the fund.”

Neel also served on the Kokomo Regional Board of Trustees for nine years, including several years as its chairperson. She regularly attends many college events throughout the region and often brings her co-workers with her to learn about Ivy Tech.

“As a community college graduate and scholarship recipient herself, Jean learned first-hand how scholarship money can change lives,” said Kelly Karickhoff, executive director of resource development for Ivy Tech’s Kokomo Region. “When she established the Neel Family Scholarship, she said, ‘This is my way of expressing gratitude for those who have helped me along the way and stepping up to do the same for others.’”

Karickhoff noted that Neel also has made a significant impact through her influence with her employer, Haynes International. During her time as a regional trustee, Haynes International contributed nearly $165,000 to Ivy Tech. The new library on the Kokomo Campus was named in honor of the company’s support. Additionally, the colleagues she brought to scholarship events have contributed an additional S5.000.

During its May 7 commencement ceremonies, Neel received an honorary Associate of Science in College and Community Service degree in recognition of her contributions to the College, its students and the communities served by Kokomo Region.

Kokomo Region representatives joining Bathe and Karickhoff in honoring Neel included Chancellor Emeritus Steve Daily, Kokomo Campus President Michelle Simmons, and Resource Development Director Miriam Thomas.

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About Ivy Tech Kokomo Region

Ivy Tech Community College Kokomo Region serves Cass, Fulton, Howard, Miami, and Tipton counties and includes campuses or instructional sites in the communities of Kokomo, Logansport, Peru, and Rochester. Ivy Tech serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering affordable degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its community along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association. For more information, visit www.ivytech.edu.
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