In 2011, Dave received the Alumni Distinguished Service Award, which recognizes alumni who have rendered outstanding, faithful and selfless service to their alma mater.
More than half of UC’s alumni live outside of the Cincinnati area, so it’s a university priority to provide opportunities for their meaningful engagement. The model for doing that has become what Dave Watkins has done in Chicago. David worked in the sales and marketing division of Ford Motor Company for ten years and for the last 8 years he has been a residential real estate agent with Coldwell Banker in Chicago.
Watkins was a mentor and “connector” with his fellow Bearcats as a student, so it was natural to continue as an alum after his 1992 graduation from the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences. His love for UC found a tremendous outlet through the UC Alumni Association, building and coordinating the Chicago alumni network. For 18 years, he has essentially been “Mr. UC” in ChicagoLand — organizing and hosting countless game-watches, cultural and networking opportunities, senior sendoffs and other events; recruiting students to UC from Chicago; assisting in the development and implementation of the UCAA Network Committee structure and mentoring other network leaders in the process; creating partnerships with Chicago businesses on behalf of UC (including establishing the official home for UC-related events in Chicago); and serving on the UCAA Board of Governors, Phi Delta Theta Housing Corporation and Proudly Cincinnati Campaign Committee (which has included blogging about UC activities in the Chicago area).
Through it all, Watkins has been a diligent, passionate and generous representative of the university while leading the fifth-largest contingent of Bearcat alumni outside of Cincinnati.