Richard Eslinger (posthumous) (EAWR Class of 1946) – Gen. Eslinger had a very distinguished military career, serving both as an enlisted man and as an officer in both the US Navy and US Air Force. He served as a combat fighter pilot in the Korean War, flying F-86 Sabres (1st American “swept wing” fighter) and the Lockheed Shooting star (a “straight-wing” jet fighter).Dick spent a long and distinguished 40-year career, training Air Force combat pilots and commanding fighter squadrons, most notably the 183rd Tactical Fighter Group based at the Air National Guard base in Springfield. Dick would go on to be Base Commander at that base for many years. Richard would attain the rank of Brigadier General in 1984, and is one of the most highly-decorated veterans from EAWR.
Paul Fritts (EAWR Class of 1955) – Mr. Fritts is a nationally respected banking consultant and expert witness who spent 34 years with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, rising through the ranks from a bank examiner in 1959, to become Executive Director in 1991. He has served the national and international banking community as a voting member of the prestigious Basel Committee on Banking; as a consultant to the World Bank, assisting third-world nations in banking practices, as well as operating a bank consulting business since his retirement from the FDIC.Mr. Fritts received a B.A. degree in Economics from Wichita State University and in 1996 was elected as one of its, “Graduates of Distinction”.
Jack Helmkamp (EAWR Class of 1965) – Mr. Helmkamp is the retired Chairman and CEO of the State Bank of Illinois in East Alton. During his professional career as a banker and continuing to this day, Jack has distinguished himself, by his active service with the United Way Partnership Foundation, the Lewis and Clark College Foundation, the Alton Memorial Hospital Foundation Board, and numerous other charitable boards and foundations.
Dr. Ashley Hill (EAWR Class of 1986) – Dr. Hill has already enjoyed a very distinguished career in the field of pediatric pathology, serving as a professor, researcher and author both at Washington University School of Medicine and at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC, where she currently serves as Chief of the Division of Pathology. Ashley is acknowledged by her peers as an expert in pleuropulmonary blastoma (PPB), a rare childhood lung tumor.
Virginia Kirkpatrick (EAWR Class of 1946) – Mrs. Kirkpatrick has distinguished herself with her long and tireless career in serving humanity, through her founding, organizing, and leadership of Operation Blessing, which is the leading conduit for collecting and distributing all sorts of foodstuffs, clothing, school supplies and other essentials to less-fortunate families in the Wood River area. Her efforts towards service have led her to receive many prestigious awards and recognition, including a St. Louis “Woman of Achievement” Award in 2008; and over 15 separate awards from local, state, and national organizations and elected officials.
Dr. Stephen Korbet (EAWR Class of 1971) – Dr. Korbet is currently the Lester and Muriel Anixter Professor of Nephrology at Rush Medical College and Chief of the Nephrology Division of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. He has been an award-winning researcher in the field of nephrology and actually holds two patents for a dialysis device. He has authored or co-authored over 100 professional journal articles and book chapters and has received numerous awards, including being selected as a “Best Doctor in America” for many years as well as a “Chicago’s Top Doctors” by Chicago Magazine.
Richard Stegemeier (EAWR Class of 1946) – Dick is the highly-respected former CEO and Chairman of the UNOCAL (Union 76 Oil Co. of California). After graduation from UM-Rolla in 1950 and obtaining his M.S. from Texas A&M, Dick began his 45 career as a petroleum engineer with UNOCAL, eventually rising through the ranks to be named CEO in 1988. Mr. Stegemeier successfully led his corporation through a hostile takeover attempt and turned around the corporation’s financial picture during his tenure as CEO.
James Towey (posthumous) (EAWR Class of 1934) – James Towey is best remembered as a self-made man who rose through the ranks to lead Olin as its President and CEO in the 1970’s. Under his direction, James led a corporation which owned 60 manufacturing plants in 25 states and 11 foreign countries. During his long and distinguished career at Olin, he also served as an accountant, controller, and Chief Financial Officer, among many other positions.