The McMullen Award

The university's second highest honor

The John McMullen Award was established on September 4, 2006, as St. Ambrose University began its celebration of 125 years of educational excellence in Davenport and the surrounding communities in Iowa and Illinois. This award from the St. Ambrose University community honors those Ambrosians and community citizens who embody the university's mission.  To learn more about the significance of the award and our previous recipients, please continuing reading below.

Thursday, April 11, 2024
4:30 pm Mass
Christ the King Chapel on the St. Ambrose Campus
Awards will be presented at end of Mass.  All are welcome to attend.

St. Ambrose University is pleased to award the 2024 McMullen Awards to Ed & Molly Carroll and Stephen '71 and Shelagh Roell.  Please read about this year's award winners below.


The McMullen Award

The award is fashioned from the crosses that once hung in the sanctuary of Christ the King Chapel. This cross with the seal of the university recognizes the heritage of St. Ambrose and the relationship of each recipient with all who have come before, those who are with us now, and those who will come in the future.

2024 McMullen Award Recipients

Edmund and Molly Carroll

Ed and Molly Carroll personify the concept of "serving in, with and for our community." Their generous commitment of support through service and leadership have advanced the mission and accessibility of the University to the community.

Ed received his bachelor's degree in History, with distinction, from Georgetown University and was a starting three-year football letter winner as a Hoya. He received his Juris Doctor from Marquette University Law School. He joined Lane & Waterman in 1986 specializing in corporate and transactional law. Ed joined the St. Ambrose University Board of Trustees in 2008 and served as Chair of the Nominating and Governance Committee. As he reflected on his 16 years of service, he noted a highlight of his time was collaborating with Sr. Joan Lescinski to lead a group on an Italian pilgrimage to better understand our patron saint, Ambrose of Milan. His service to the community also extends to other boards, including the YMCA of the Iowa Mississippi Valley, Y of the USA, and Genesis Health Services Foundation, now the Better Health Foundation.

Molly graduated from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana with a bachelor's degree from the College of Commerce. Years of experience in the newspaper industry followed, including work at the Chicago Tribune, Lee Enterprises, and as publisher of the Muscatine Journal. Like Ed, she has served the community through volunteerism in the fields of youth and education including United Way of the Quad Cities "Women United," past chair of the Women's Leadership Council, and Project Renewal.

On campus, one of their most notable impacts started as a brainstorming session regarding a new event in the 1990s. The initial fundraising wine dinners hosted by local couples evolved into the St. Ambrose Wine Festival. Since the beginning, Ed and Molly have actively supported this this multi-event series, which is expected to surpass the $2 million mark under their direction as event chairs.

Ed and Molly's loyal dedication and service to the Quad Cities' community has resulted in a steady and remarkable impact on many. St. Ambrose University is fortunate to be among the organizations they support and to have them as champions for our cause. We've benefitted greatly from their experience, knowledge and faith.

Stephen '71 and Shelagh Roell

If a St. Ambrose student wonders whether one person can make a difference, they need not look any further than Steve and Shelagh Roell. Individually, these two have made significant contributions through their careers and community involvement. Together, as a couple, the ripple effect of their service has impacted thousands.

Steve credits Professor Wally Evans for making a difference in his life. Wally served as a mentor and major influence who helped get Steve's career started as a public accountant at Arthur Young & Co., Chicago, following his graduation from St. Ambrose.

Steve later joined Johnson Controls in 1982 as operations controller and retired in 2013 as Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Directors. Steve's success at Johnson Controls was driven by innovation. He founded the Johnson Controls Innovation Center in 2013 with a vision to continually transform and renew the company by pursuing new ideas that delivered value to customers. Upon his retirement, Johnson Controls renamed its global center the Stephen A. Roell Innovation Center to honor Steve's lasting impact to the organization and the way it approached business.

As a retired clinical psychologist and registered nurse, Dr. Shelagh M. Roell made a difference each and every day. Her background includes psychological evaluation and treatment of individuals within diverse physical medicine settings, as well as teaching and research. As an accomplished equestrian, she merged her passion, education, and talents to work with organizations that utilize horses to provide innovative physical, emotional, and social benefits to participants of all ages.

Even though Steve and Shelagh's community impact is centered around the Milwaukee area, there's no denying the ripple effect they've had on the St. Ambrose campus. Through their generous support, including service as a co-chair of the McMullen Hall Capital Initiative, Steve and Shelagh have continued to invest in the university. Steve shared that "St. Ambrose provided me with the education, encouragement, character and values to be successful in my business career," and now this couple is ensuring those same pillars will be instilled in the next generation of Ambrosians.

2023 McMullen Award Recipients

Rev. Charles Adam ‘82
Christopher ‘04, ‘06 MPS and Kristen ‘07, ‘08 MOT Mandle

2021/2022 McMullen Award Recipients

Beth ‘86 and Brian ‘86 Lemek

2020 McMullen Award Recipients

Richard "Dick" Bittner
Tom Higgins ‘67

2019 McMullen Award Recipients

Rev. Robert McAleer ‘67
Thomas A. Sunderbruch ‘62

2018 McMullen Award Recipients

Joanna and Jef ‘70 Heckinger
Drs. Bea and Paul Jacobson

2017 McMullen Award Recipients

Daniel F. Broderick ‘82 and Thomas J. Mnich
Rev. Msgr. Drake R. Shafer ‘69

2016 McMullen Award Recipients

Bernie Hardiek
Dr. Thomas and Mary Ann Stoffel

2015 McMullen Award Recipients

James ‘69 (HON. ‘16) and Karen Collins
Msgr. John Hyland ‘64

2014 McMullen Award Recipients

John ‘58 and Helen ‘57 Morrissey
Joe ‘72 and Joyce O'Rouke

2013 McMullen Award Recipients

Mary Joy Allaert Feeney
Edward ‘64 and Lynne Henkhaus

2012 McMullen Award Recipients

John (HON. ‘94) and Patricia Bush
Richard Geiger

2011 McMullen Award Recipients

Rev. William Dawson ‘50
Rev. Edmond Dunn ‘58
Dimitri and Kathy ‘94 Papageorgiou

2010 McMullen Award Recipients

Most Rev. William Franklin, DD, (HON. ‘94)
James ‘56, (HON. ‘93), and Mary Hagen
Ray ‘53 and Jill McLaughlin

2008 McMullen Award Recipients

James ‘59 and Elaine Malay
Don Moeller
Jerri (HON. ‘95) Moeller

2007 McMullen Award Recipients

Jane Folwell (HON. ‘01)
Robert "Bob" Kelly ‘57
Rev. George McDaniel ‘66, PhD
Rev. Msgr. Marvin Mottet ‘52. (HON. ‘82)
Dr. Walter Neiswanger ‘48, (HON, ‘82)

2006 McMullen Award Recipients

Rev. Edward Catich ‘34. (HON. ‘77)
Dr. Donald ‘52 and Mrs. Mary Jo Heming
Dr. William ‘49 and Mrs. Eda ‘81 Hofmann
Leo Kilfoy ‘51, PhD
I. Weir ‘51, (HON. "80) and Pat Sears
Joseph Walton ‘50

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