St. John Fisher College’s Bittner School of Business Honors Alumni
On April 4, the Bittner School of Business at St. John Fisher College hosted a banquet to honor the alumni winners of the Excellence in Management Award and the Dean’s Medal for Outstanding Service. The event took place at the Genesee Valley Club, and awards were presented by Dr. Donald Bain, President of St. John Fisher College, Dr. David Martin, Dean of the Bittner School, and Michael Goonan ’75, Chair of the Board of Trustees.
This year’s recipient of the Excellence in Management Award (EIMA) was Daniel Gallagher ’80. The EIMA is the preeminent award bestowed by the Bittner School. It recognizes an alumna or alumnus who demonstrates: outstanding leadership and managerial accomplishments in business, academia, or a community-based organization; a proven track record of significant accomplishments in the field of management; a record of community involvement; and a commitment to St. John Fisher College.
Gallagher is founder and CEO of SOLEO Communications. Prior to SOLEO, Gallagher provided executive leadership at TARGUS Information Corporation and was a founder of Telephony Computer Systems. He also served in a number of management capacities with Nortel Networks and Computer Consoles, Inc. His career has been focused on bringing innovative technology solutions for voice processing, call processing, directory services, billing systems, and intelligent network databases to the telecommunications marketplace.
Gallagher serves as Chairman of the Bittner School’s Business Advisory Council, and serves on the Membership Committee of the Rochester Business Alliance.
Dr. Bain, Daniel Gallagher, and Michael Goonan.
The 2012 recipient of the Dean’s Medal for Outstanding Service was Jill Knittel ’94. The award was created in 2007 to honor the exemplary and sustained contributions of individuals in the service of the Bittner School. Outstanding service includes involvement in advisory boards, mentoring, fundraising, community relations, and accreditation.
Knittel is COO and co-owner of ER Associates. Prior to joining the company, Knittel served as partner at Worldleaders, a national search firm that led executive searches for client companies in a variety of industries. She also worked for Advantage Professionals, LLC, from 1997 until 2007. As vice president for two years, she managed all aspects of external sales, marketing, recruitment, and permanent/contract placement.
Knittel is currently vice chair of the Bivona Child Advocacy Center Board of Directors, and is the Chairperson of the organization’s current capital campaign. She is past president of the College’s Alumni Board of Directors, and serves on the President’s Advisory Board. Additionally, she is an executive committee member of the DuPlessis Wolfe Accounting Society.
Dr. Bain; Lori Hollenbeck, Assistant Dean for Administration, Bittner School of Business; Jill Knittel; and Dr. David Martin, Dean, Bittner School of Business.
This year’s event also included a new Rising Star Award, which was created to recognize recent Fisher graduates for success in their early careers in management. Honorees were chosen based on career achievements, involvement with the College and the community, and potential for more success as their career matures. The award was presented to two individuals, Danielle Bergman ’07, and Michele Nichols Gleber ’03.
Bergman serves as the Deputy Network Human Resources Manager with the Department of Veterans Affairs in New York State. She is responsible for several key HR functions for a network of five upstate New York VA Medical Centers and 29 community-based outpatient clinics. Her primary focus includes executive recruitment and advisement, strategic human capital planning, advisement of field HR personnel, and supervision of several key HR functions for the region. She also serves as a national mentor and trainer for the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Prior to this position, Bergman served as a Senior HR Specialist with the State Department of Veterans Affairs and with the Department of Veterans Affairs in the Canandaigua VA Medical Center, and as a Technical Career Field Intern with the Department’s Central Office.
Gleber is the President of PLS Launch Solutions. She is responsible for setting internal strategy, and guides teams that work with CEOs of companies ranging from emerging growth to Fortune 50.
In 2011, the company launched a national program to support technology companies who were repositioning their companies and changing their business models. Gleber is currently looking into a European expansion of this program.
Gleber is also an international speaker and writer within technology sectors, and has a monthly column featured in leading optics and photonics magazines.
She serves as the Governance Chair on the College’s Alumni Board, Communications Chair for Women’s Executive Network, and is involved with the New York Photonics Cluster, Executive Leadership Team for the American Heart Association Heart Walk, the Victor Board of Education Capital Committee, and is a FIRST Jr. Coach.
Rising Stars Michele Nichols Gleber and Danielle Bergman with Dr. Bain.