The IU Bicentennial Medal recognizes distinguished and distinctive service in support of the mission of Indiana University. Recipients have, through their personal, artistic, professional, or philanthropic efforts broadened the reach of IU to the state, nation, and world.
The Medal design, developed by IU Professor Jeeyea Kim, reflects IU’s strong network in Indiana and its impact and trajectory outward, with markings that reflect ripples outward, as well as markings reminiscent of airplane flight routes.
In a 1990 fire in the Student Building tower, bells that were housed there fell to the ground and were seriously damaged. The metal from those bells has now been recast as Bicentennial Medals. Recipients of the Bicentennial Medal receive an actual piece of Indiana University history.
Sue “Kate” Milliman
In 1964, Kate’s work as Union Board director was so strong that it led fellow student leaders to ask her to run to be the first woman president of Union Board the following year. She served as the first female president of Union Board with distinction, in an era when having a woman elected as president of one of the two or three most important and visible student organizations, was groundbreaking and important to the campus and student body.
Kate has stayed involved and connected to the Indiana Memorial Union and Union Board, as a member of the alumni board that planned the Union’s Centennial Celebration in 2009, as a donor, and as an ongoing volunteer leader including taking on a project in 2019 to review minutes and scrapbooks for the last 60 years of Union Board to identify more student leaders who were not directors and former staff so they can be included in the Union Board’s alumni association, the John Whittenberger Society.
Winston Shindell served as executive director of the Indiana Memorial Union from 1981 until retiring in 2004. During that time, he oversaw a comprehensive renovation of the Union, the growth of Union Board, and was a national and community leader. Winston served in several roles for the Association of College Unions International, including President in 1990, and five years later was awarded its highest honor for outstanding work as a professional and service to the profession.
More than 20 former students and staff who served under Winston went on to become union directors on various campuses around the country. In 1995, Winston was made executive director of the IU Auditorium as well. Winston served in various roles in the community, including with the convention & visitors bureau (Visit Bloomington), United Way of Monroe County, and as president of Bloomington Rotary, and he continues to serve on boards such as those of the Shalom Community Center and the IU Health Foundation, as well as being active on advisory boards for the IMU and the Auditorium. Winston is also a recipient of the Sagamore of the Wabash award.
Rosemary Tanner was a pioneer as one of the first female Indiana Memorial Union Board Directors when the Board merged with the Association of Women Students. Rosemary served on the 1952-53 Board and helped establish an example of active involvement in community service, civic affairs, and excellence in scholarship.
Rosemary’s service, leadership, and philanthropy to Indiana University did not end with graduation. She served as one of the founding directors of the John Whittenberger Society (the Union Board Alumni Association) in 1982 and continued that service until 1997. In 1999, the Union’s largest student scholarship, for outstanding women leaders in Union Board, was established by her husband Gene to pay tribute to her lifelong commitment to the IMU.
Jerry Abramson’s career in the public sector has included working with leaders from Bobby Kennedy to Barack Obama. Jerry’s great work and leadership changed the future of Louisville, Kentucky and the entire metropolitan area through 5 terms as mayor of the city of Louisville or the joint city/county entity, as Lieutenant Governor, and as Director of Intergovernmental Relations in the Obama White House. He certainly meets these qualifications.
Jerry has been a loyal and proud IU alum, and Union Board alum, and his contributions to IU started with student leadership, including worked focused on campus through two years as Union Board Director and off-campus with the Robert Kennedy campaign. It has been a point of pride for many IU alumni and friends to have Jerry play a key role in the leadership and governance of Louisville, Kentucky, and the United States.
Jerry was able to accept his medal in person during a small ceremony in the Federal Room in early 2020 before the pandemic.