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The Outstanding Alumni Award has been presented annually since 1988 to an alum of Rhodes State College or Lima Technical College who has distinguished him/herself both professionally and through community service activities. These accomplishments may emphasize professional, social or educational values. Past recipients represent a wide variety of area citizenship, leadership and professional excellence.

The 2021 Rhodes State College Outstanding Alumni Award recipient was Benjamin B. Stobbe, Associate of Applied Science - Nursing, 1987.

      According to Mr. Stobbe, it was “his time spent at James A. Rhodes State College in the Nursing program that launched his unique and fast-advancing career.”

      After graduating from Lima Technical College, Mr. Stobbe started as a Registered Nurse at Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, Ohio working in the areas of neurology/neurosurgery, trauma, critical care, and vascular/thoracic. He joined the hospital’s team to design one of the first interprofessional simulation centers in the country. This experience led to his involvement with the design, construction and management of simulated health teaching labs at the University of Toledo and currently the University of Nebraska Medical Center. 

      As Assistant Vice Chancellor, he provides leadership for the Sorrell Clinical Simulation Lab, College of Pharmacy Simulation Lab, Simulation in Motion Nebraska (Sim-NE), and the new Davis Global Center. Ultimately, Mr. Stobbe wanted to be able to help all levels of learners get hands-on practice with clinical practices through the introduction of a simulation-based curriculum, which conveys material that is more interactive and experiential than learning from a textbook or lecture. His goal is to help create safer patient care providers and enhance patient safety.
      In addition to his associate degree in nursing, Mr. Stobbe also completed a bachelor’s degree in Business and an MBA from the University of Phoenix. In 2010, he became a TeamSTEPPS (Team Strategies and Tools to Enhance Performance and Patient Safety) Master Trainer. TeamSTEPPS is an evidence-based set of teamwork tools, aimed at optimizing patient outcomes by improving communication and teamwork skills among health care professionals. 
      He shared these thoughts, “I look, occasionally, back at the start of my nursing career and am grateful for the path that I was directed towards [at Rhodes State College], since it has allowed me to experience an exciting professional career as well as enjoy a level of personal growth. The combination of the Nursing and Business degrees has provided me with the unique skill set and has allowed my career to advance quickly, but I know that I would not have been as successful and fortunate if I had not achieved my nursing education and had a clinical career first. My current position as Assistant Vice Chancellor for Clinical Simulation has me at the strategic and operational level for the program. This still allows me to maintain my passion of ensuring that we prepare our learners with the level of communication, empathy and skill set that impacts patient care and patient safety that is critical for our patients. I frequently look back at the start of my nursing career and am grateful for the path that I was afforded since this has allowed me to experience an exciting professional career as well as enjoy the fulfillment of personal growth that comes with being able to help others.”

Outstanding Alumni Archive

Award Year Alum Degree Graduation Year
1988 Kay Rodabaugh Parent* Nursing 1982
1989 Cynthia C. Unverferth Office Secretarial 1987
1990 Marlin R. Kirkendall Law Enforcement 1973
1991 Annabelle “Katie” Allen* Nursing 1976
1992 Jerry D. Good Accounting 1976
1993 Gregory E. Phipps Electrical Engineering 1983
1994 Lori L. Reidenbach Law Enforcement/Corrections 1984
1995 Angie Dupes Clark Business 1989
1996 David K. Holbrook Law Enforcement 1991
1997 Connie M. Dershem Human Services 1994
1998 Gary Wurst Computer Programming 1993
1999 Donna M. Dickman Human Services 1994
2000 Jerry D. McGlothen Respiratory Care 1982 & 1992
2001 Cathy L. Patton, RN, MSN Nursing 1977
2002 Mary Kay Koch Verhoff Radiology Technology 1978
2003 Christine N. Nathe, RDH, MS Dental Hygiene 1986
2004 Anthony R. Iriti Accounting 1978
2005 Terry L. White, Ph. D. Law Enforcement 1974
2006 David L. Ditto Quality Engineering 2004
2007 Twyla Duprey Rose Secretarial Science 1978
2008 Chris D. Bolen Electrical Engineering 1984
2009 John E. White Computer Programming 1979
2010 Matthias J. Kaplanow Retail Marketing Management 1988
2011 Ann M. Deerhake, RN, MSN Nursing 1991
2012 Douglass S. Degen Mechanical Engineering 1987
2013 Joseph L. Kitchen EMS, ATS Fire Science 2012
2014 Marilyn F. Cipollone Human Services 1994
2015 Timothy M. Mosher,CNP EMS, Nursing 1982,1984
2016 Jane P. Krites Nursing 1987
2017 Mary L. Marker Respiratory Care 1980
2018 Roni L. Height Accounting 1977
2019 Cathy L. Kohli Law Enforcement 1987
2020 Rachael S. Gilroy Paralegal/Legal Assisting 1994
2021 Benjamin B. Stobbe Nursing 1987