Dr. Ron Manahan, former Grace president, represented Grace College on November 5 at the 2014 Kosciusko County Entrepreneur and Innovation Hall of Fame ceremony and dinner. Manahan was selected for induction into the 2014 Innovation and Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame, which honors the individual or individuals who grew a company that is still located in Kosciusko County through either innovation/invention or entrepreneurship.
Paul, Steve, and Bruce Grossnickle of Grossnickle Eye Center, Gay and Dan Robinson of Robinson Construction, Reub and Chandler Williams of the Times-Union (Reub Williams & Sons), and Josh Wildman of Wildman Business Group were honored as well. In addition, William Henthorn of Seymour Midwest (Midwest Rake), a former Grace alumnus (1977), was honored.
In 1994, Manahan became the fifth president of Grace College & Seminary. His visionary leadership helped advance the institution through the development of new programs, the construction of new facilities, the expansion of global outreach, and greater emphasis on tuition affordability for students and families. Because of the efforts of Manahan and his leadership team, enrollment has more than doubled and is currently at its highest in the school’s history.
The wall between community and college dissolved with Manahan’s insistence on Grace becoming a partner of the community, which resulted in the renovation of Westminster Hall in 1996 and the building of the Orthopaedic Capital Center in 2007. He was also a key initiator and facilitator in working with BioCrossroads on the grant from the Lilly Endowment, which resulted in OrthoWorx and the Orthopedics Capital Foundation.
During his tenure, the Prison Education Program greatly expanded, and the Distance/Online Education Program and the Korean Studies Program began in 1996. The Water Quality Project (KLAS) launched in 2007 and the GOAL (Grace Opportunity for Adult Learners) Degree Completion Program in 2009. More recently, Manahan helped implement the ORCA (Orthopaedic Regulatory and Clinical Affairs) Program, the Henry and Frances Weber initiative (multiple locations), and the partnership with Trine University for a Kosciusko-based engineering degree program. His initiatives played key roles in creating a spirit of innovation that changed both Grace College and the surrounding communities.
“I am deeply honored to join the group already inducted into the Kosciusko County Innovation and Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame,” said Manahan. “I thank God for the opportunity he gave me to be a small part of Grace College and Seminary and our county. I thank him and all those who had a part in this recognition.”