This year’s Joseph Wharton Awards Dinner was held October 11 at The University Club of New York on Fifth Avenue and 54th Street. The high-ceilinged ballroom with chandeliers and classic wood panels felt fitting for our celebration of the world’s oldest business
The four 2018 Joseph Wharton Award recipients were:
• Lifetime Achievement — Arthur D. Collins, Jr., WG’73, retired Chairman and CEO of Medtronic;
• Leadership — Jonathan Gray, C’92, W’92, President and COO of Blackstone;
• Social Impact — Anne Welsh McNulty, WG’79, Managing Partner of JBK Partners and President of the McNulty Foundation;
• Young Leadership — Kunal Bahl,W’06, Eng’06, Co-Founder and CEO of Snapdeal.
Alex Gorsky, WG’96, CEO of Johnson & Johnson, served as Chair of the Dinner. He spoke of the simple honor to be present. “When we live in a cynical world, the time that you are taking tonight to recognize good people is awesome. As some of us age, we become more sentimental about the lessons learned and friends made at school. We come here tonight to share that with faculty, share that spirit of optimism again, know what a great source of good that business can be, and hear how awardees innovated and made a global impact. I am proud to share the stage tonight with Arthur, Jon, Anne and Kunal. I feel their impact beyond the financials — that they are making a difference to their employees and their communities.”
Kenny Beck, WG’87, was recognized as the catalyst bringing back the Joseph Wharton Awards Dinner. In recognizing volunteers, he reminded attendees that there are 70 Wharton Alumni Associations around the world, with the Wharton Club of New York being the largest. “We have over 220 volunteers providing over 200 events per year and serving 25,000 alumni. Our Club benefits from three principles:
1. Enlightened self-interest
2. Tangible results
3. Small interactive events, which are the most valuable
“WCNY connects alumni looking for capital with alumni looking to invest, and alumni looking for opportunities with alumni looking to hire people. We serve from graduation to death, although I’ve discovered that Wharton alumni don’t die — we just yield to maturity.”
Regina Jaslow, W’97, our Club President, encouraged attendees to find those they could mentor. “I recently asked the Joseph Wharton Award recipients, both past and 2018, about how many mentors they had had in their careers. The majority could think of three or more mentors who had made a difference in their lives.
I encourage attendees at this year’s Dinner to mentor, especially seasoned alumni, to give fellow alumni a boost to serve in the C-suite or in board roles. As a mentor, you may hold the power to develop the next Joseph Wharton Award recipient. So, determine this year to Take the Call, and Make the Call!”