Joseph P. Collins '34 Meritorious Service Award
Fifty years ago, a young freshman stepped onto the Saint Anselm campus with a promise to keep. Having been initially rejected by the admission office, he appealed to the Dean assuring him that if admitted to the College, he would not only work hard, but that he would make the Dean's List.
Since then Jeff Burke, Class of 1969, has made good on that promise and many, many more. After graduating cum laude with a degree in Economics, the first up and down slopes he chose to analyze were those of New Hampshire's White Mountain ski areas; but even as a temporary ski bum, he made a point of sending an annual check back to 100 Saint Anselm Drive. They had taken a chance on him and he did not forget. And he has never forgotten since.
Today as a senior vice president at Fred C. Church Inc. in Lowell, Massachusetts, Jeff is paying it forward. He and his wife Irene are longtime members of the President's Society and never pass up an opportunity to advance the reputation and strength of Saint Anselm: attending events, sustaining their annual giving, mentoring young alums, recruiting prospective students and serving as ambassadors for all things Anselmian. Actively engaged in the Alumni Association, Jeff is particularly passionate about his role as reunion chair and proud of his success for many years in bringing back to campus his classmates in the Class of 1969.
As a student, Jeff worked three jobs to help pay for his education, including mowing the grass and picking up the grounds. Today, his maintenance efforts on behalf of his alma mater are more extensive, but no less tireless. Recently he and Irene established a multi-year scholarship to support students who are anxious to work as hard as he did. Jeff Burke is a man who keeps his promises and we are honored to award him with the Joseph P. Collins '34 Meritorious Service Award.