WINONA LAKE, Ind. – Former Grace President Ronald Manahan was honored with the prestigious Sagamore of the Wabash award on Monday. The award was presented at a meeting held at 10:30 a.m. Feb. 17 in Westminster Hall. Present at the meeting were Grace employees and invited guests, community leaders, and previous Sagamore award winners Dane Miller and Jean Northenor.
The Sagamore of the Wabash Award is one of the highest honors which the governor of Indiana bestows, a personal tribute usually given to those who have rendered distinguished service to the state or to the governor.
The term “sagamore” came from a similar word used by Algonquian-speaking American Indian tribes of the northeastern United States to refer to a lesser chief or greater man of the tribe. An honorary award created by the state of Indiana during the term of Governor Ralph F. Gates (1945-1949), the Sagamore has been bestowed on astronauts, presidents, ambassadors, artists, musicians, politicians and citizens who have contributed greatly to Hoosier heritage.
Dr. Dane Miller presented the award to Dr. Manahan, and Dr. Manahan’s daughter, Dr. Kelly Manahan Geisler, spoke on behalf of the family. Dr. Manahan was nominated for the award by Grace history professor emeritus R. Wayne Snider. In addition, Toby Buck and Dr. Dane Miller wrote letters of support.
“Dr. Manahan has been successful not only in building Grace College and Seminary as an institution of higher learning; he also concentrated on building our community,” said Miller, founder of Biomet Inc. “With his character, proficiency, and service he has made leaps and bounds for all of us in this beautiful region we call home.”
Current Grace President Bill Katip said, “Dr. Ronald E. Manahan embodies the mission of Grace Schools — that of applying biblical truth as the foundation for developing character, competence, and service. His visionary leadership helped advance the institution through the development of new programs, the construction of new facilities, the expansion of global outreach and increased tuition affordability for students and families.”
“I am deeply honored and humbled to be a recipient of one of the state’s highest honors, the Sagamore of the Wabash award,” said Manahan. “I am grateful for the opportunity God gave my family and me to be a small part of Grace College and Seminary, the Warsaw-Winona Lake region, and the state of Indiana. To all who gave generous comments today at the award ceremony, I am very thankful.”