The Park family legacy

Topics: Administrative, Alumni, Teachers College

August 22, 2007

The Park Hall name reflects a legacy of leadership and loyalty to Ball State, said President Jo Ann M. Gora.

Don Park, whose dedicated administrative leadership contributed significantly to the growth and development of Ball State, is one of five generations of his family to be affiliated with the university over 87 years.

"Don rose through the ranks of the faculty at our Teachers College and later went on to serve as an Indiana state senator," Gora said. "Don's love of education drew him back to Ball State where he has proven himself to be an incredible asset to the university. His efforts of enhancing opportunities for Ball State students, faculty, staff and alumni are marked by decades rather than years, and this building will serve as proper tribute to Don and his entire family."

Don earned a bachelor's degree from Ball State in 1961. He attended the commencement ceremony with his mother, Irene, who also earned a bachelor's degree that year. He received a master's degree from Ball State in 1963, the same year he married Claire Swick, who earned her bachelor's degree that year and a master's degree in 1969.

Don, who served as an assistant professor of education administration in Teachers College and rose to full professor in 1974, also served Ball State and the people of Muncie during a four-year term as an Indiana state senator from 1970 to 1974. In 1974, he began his efforts to enhance Ball State's relationships with alumni and supporters as associate director of alumni and development.

During Park's 14-year tenure as vice president for university advancement, the university completed four major fundraising campaigns, three Lilly Endowment Challenge Grants, and expanded development, alumni and marketing programs to enhance opportunities for Ball State students, faculty, staff and alumni. Park has received three alumni honors from the university, including the Distinguished Alumni Award and a Benny Award.

A member of the Park family has been enrolled at Ball State in nearly every decade of the university's history.

First Generation
Frank Park
Blanche Park
 
Second Generation
Fred Park
Irene Park
Hillard Park
 
Third Generation
Marilyn (Park) Pickell-Hunt
Robert Pickell
Jim Hunt
David Park
Norma (Park) Armstrong
Don Park
Claire (Swick) Park
 
Fourth Generation
Robert Pickell Jr.
Christine Pickell
Randy Pickell
Karen Karwoski
Leslie Pickell
Kristen Park Trella
Jennifer Park Novack
Kent Park
 
Fifth Generation
Ben Karwoski
Ryan Pickell

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