Four individuals received special recognition from the Alumni Association at its annual awards ceremony on March 27. Accomplished Graduates were also named during the program.
David Bryan of Perrysburg received the Honorary Alumnus Award, while 2004 graduate Michael Young of Los Angeles received the Recent Graduate Award. Margarita De León of Toledo, who earned degrees from BGSU in 1979 and 1981, was awarded the Alumni Community Award, and 1977 graduate Phil Ridolfi of Brecksville earned the Alumni Service Award.
Bryan is an attorney with Wasserman, Bryan, Landry & Honold LLP, based in Toledo, and has been practicing law for over 30 years in northwest Ohio. Closely familiar with BGSU since childhood, he has followed the path of his parents, Ashel G. and Dorothy Uber Bryan, to serve the University over more than two decades. He is a past chair of the Board of Trustees and a current member of the BGSU Foundation, Inc.
From 2004-08, Bryan became even more involved with the University as a College of Arts and Sciences Advocate. He provided leadership for the Advocates’ Pre-Law Initiative as well as for the Medici Circle, a School of Art friends’ group that his mother helped found nearly 30 years ago. He and his wife, Myrna, regularly open their home for fund-raising events on behalf of the University and the school.
Young, a 2004 graduate of the visual communication technology program, owns and operates Third Cousin, an interactive new-media production company. Through Third Cousin, Young has worked on Web sites, banners and flash games for companies such as Disney, Warner Brothers, Verizon Wireless and Nestlé. He is active with BGSU’s southern California alumni chapter.
Young is also the co-founder and co-owner of Shamplade, which produces humorous, vintage-style T-shirts sold at Urban Outfitters retail stores and online. The company is now located in Los Angeles, but was begun in 2003 when Young and Andrew Lyon were seniors at BGSU and formally launched Shamplade.com. Starting with $500 of their own money, they produced seven styles for sale locally. While Shamplade is gaining street credibility and recognition at the retail level, both owners view the company as a “side job,” albeit one that grossed more than $45,000 in its first full year of business.
Margarita De León
De León is regional director for The Kaleidoscope Group, a full-service diversity consulting firm based in Chicago. She has worked with the company for 10 years securing and managing clients, conducting assessments and facilitating diversity training throughout the United States.
De León’s experience in Hispanic marketing, advertising and nonprofit development, corporate communications, publishing, fundraising, special events, diversity and public service has helped Ohio’s Latino community move in a positive direction. She is the former publisher of BRAVO Magazine, Ohio’s first Hispanic magazine, which was introduced in the fall of 1997 as a newspaper and then in 2003 as a magazine.
Among her many awards and recognitions, De León was inducted into the Ohio Women’s Hall of Fame in 2000 for her advocacy work. Some of her current volunteer activities include serving on the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority Board of Trustees, as a committee member for the 20th annual regional Diamante Latino Recognition and Scholarship Banquet, and as a consultant and fundraiser for the ninth annual LatinoFest, which she helped found.
Ridolfi is a founding member of SPS Partners LLC, a real estate investment company headquartered in Mayfield Village. The company specializes in marketing residential properties on a lease-option basis and owns several properties in northeast Ohio. Ridolfi was previously president of America’s Body Company Inc. and chief financial officer for American Environmental Group.
He served on the BGSU Alumni Association Board of Directors from 1999-2003, was chair from 2001-02 and was on the executive committee from 2000-03. He is a past leader of the Summit/Medina chapter of the alumni association and has been involved in numerous stewardship events in the years since his graduation. He is also a member of BGSU’s Presidents Club and Heritage Society.
Ridolfi is chair of the board of trustees of University Hospitals-Bedford Medical System and is a trustee for the University Hospital Health Systems. He is also chair of the board of trustees of the Partnership for America’s Future, located in Akron.