2013 Distinguished Alumni
2013 Distinguished Alumni Award Honorees
Herbert A. Beckwith, MS ’94
Herbert Beckwith is chief financial officer and senior vice president of international operations for Justin Brands. A certified public accountant, he earned a master’s degree in accounting from UT Arlington while working full time for Justin and raising a family. During his 31-year career with the Fort Worth-based boot maker, he has been instrumental in opening markets in Canada, Europe, South America, and Japan. He played a key role in Justin’s acquisition of the Tony Lama and Chippewa boot companies and the Highland Shoe Co. He is chairman of Fort Worth South, Inc. and serves on the North Texas Commission Board of Directors. He is a past member of the UT Arlington College of Business and Department of Accounting advisory councils. In 2012 the Fort Worth Business Press named Beckwith CFO of the Year, and the College of Business honored him with its inaugural alumni award for outstanding career achievements.
Arun Bhikshesvaran, MS ’95
Arun Bhikshesvaran is chief marketing officer for L.M. Ericsson Group. He began working for the telecommunications company soon after graduating from UT Arlington with a master’s degree in electrical engineering. He has been senior vice president for strategy and marketing and chief technology officer for Ericsson North America and has worked in multimedia and infrastructure solutions, systems solutions and integration, field engineering, research and development, and global product marketing. He became chief marketing officer in 2011 and is responsible for global marketing strategy. He serves as chairman of the Global Marketing Leadership Team and is a member of the company’s strategic council. Bhikshesvaran helped Ericsson win major contracts with Cingular Wireless, Verizon Wireless, and Sprint in the United States and with several others globally. He serves on the Electrical Engineering Industrial Advisory Board in the UT Arlington College of Engineering.
Barbara White Bryson, BS ’84
Barbara White Bryson is the associate vice president for facilities engineering and planning at Rice University, responsible for the planning, construction, and maintenance of the university’s facilities, grounds, central plant, and infrastructure. She earned a bachelor’s degree in architecture from UT Arlington, an M.B.A. from the University of Miami, and a doctorate in higher education from the University of Pennsylvania. In 2008 she became a member of the American Institute of Architects College of Fellows for her work in integrated planning at Miami and Rice, as well as for her role in leading design and construction efforts on the Rice campus through two major building programs. Dr. Bryson is co-author of The Owner’s Dilemma, published in 2010, which examines the owner’s role in the design and construction industry. She serves on the board for the Design Future’s Council for Design Intelligence and, in 2010, was named a senior DFC fellow.
Keith L. Crandell, MS ’87
Keith Crandell is a co-founder and managing director of ARCH Venture Partners, a 27-year-old seed and early-stage venture capital partnership with offices in Chicago, Austin, San Francisco, and Seattle. ARCH manages $1.5 billion in capital and focuses on core technology spinouts from universities and other U.S. research organizations. Since 2004 he has served as chairman of the Advisory Board of the Illinois State Treasurer Technology Development Account, a fund-of-funds focused on Illinois private equity and venture capital partnerships. He also serves on the Entrepreneurship Advisory Board at the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Chicago Booth and is a director of the Clean Energy Trust and the Chicago History Museum. Crandell, who earned a master’s degree in chemistry from UT Arlington, has been a member of the University’s Development Board since 2009 and supports the Charles K. Baker Fellowship in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.
JoAnn Lee, BA ’76
JoAnn Lee, who earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from UT Arlington, is assistant general counsel, global litigation for ExxonMobil and a member of the Law Department Management Committee. Her responsibilities include management of 150 employees and oversight of a global litigation and arbitration portfolio to protect the interests of the company's shareholders. Prior to joining ExxonMobil, where she has served in various management positions, she was a trial attorney for Union Pacific Railroad and chief prosecutor in the Harris County District Attorney’s Office. A graduate of The University of Texas School of Law, Lee serves on the Advisory Board of Corporate Counsel Women of Color and is a member of the Executive Leadership Council, Chief Litigation Counsel Association, Houston Bar Foundation, and Texas Bar Foundation. She also serves on the board at Family Services of Greater Houston and volunteers with Habitat for Humanity and other nonprofit organizations.
Jeffrey A. Leuschel, BA ’77
Jeff Leuschel is a partner in the Dallas office of McCall, Parkhurst & Horton L.L.P., representing clients in municipal finance transactions in Texas and Oklahoma. He has helped numerous Texas communities structure economic development public-private partnerships, including Alliance Airport, Texas Motor Speedway, the redevelopment of Dallas Love Field, and the construction of the Dallas Convention Center hotel. Texas Lawyer named him Public Finance Lawyer of the Year in Dallas in 2011, and he is an honorary member of the Government Treasurers Organization of Texas. He chairs the Video Association of Dallas Board of Directors and has served on the board of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra Guild. Leuschel earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from UT Arlington and a law degree from The University of Texas School of Law. A member of the UT Arlington Development Board, he has endowed a scholarship for graduate students in the College of Liberal Arts.
Betsy Price, BS ’72
Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price graduated from UT Arlington with a bachelor’s degree in biology. She took office in 2011 and was re-elected to a second two-year term in 2013. In addition to promoting jobs, strengthening education, fighting crime, and improving mobility, she has focused on making Fort Worth a healthy, engaged, and fiscally responsible city. She helped organize FitWorth, a citywide initiative to encourage active lifestyles and healthy habits in children and adults. She has championed responsible and sustainable cuts to balance the city’s $1.2 billion budget and advocated changes to the pension plan to protect taxpayers and stabilize the fund. Prior to being elected mayor, Price served 11 years as Tarrant County’s tax assessor. Her numerous honors include the Presidential Award from the Tax Assessor-Collectors Association of Texas and the Altrusa Civic Award for professional and volunteer contributions to the community.