High-profile South Florida business leaders filled the FIU Arena to celebrate successful alumni during the College of Business’ 2014 Hall of Fame induction ceremony on September 12.
The gala honored dynamic individuals who through their vision and leadership have made lasting contributions to their companies, their communities, and the FIU College of Business.
“Each one of our honorees took the lessons they learned here at FIU and turned them into world-class success stories,” said FIU president Mark B. Rosenberg. “That is what we are about: the opportunity to build something for future generations, just as others have built for us.”
Philanthropist R. Kirk Landon received the 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award, recognizing his success in the world of business and banking and his efforts to cement the educational, civic and cultural foundation of South Florida.
The 2014 Hall of Fame inductees included the founder of a home-grown global fashion brand, a prominent local artist, and three banking and investment executives:
- Alexander Mijares –MBA ’11, COO, MJM Manufacturing; Artist.
- Alina Villasante – Alumna, designer & creator Peace Love World
- Guillermo G. Castillo – BBA ’81, president, Middle Market Banking JP Morgan Chase
- Eric Maldonado – BBA ’86, managing director, Markit
- Randy Robertson – BBA ’84, managing director, BlackRock
“I am proud that each of the honorees has maintained a unique association with our FIU College of Business, as supporters, role models and mentors,” said business college dean David R. Klock. “You have given us the greatest gift by sharing a belief in our college.”
New events add to the Hall of Fame anniversary celebration.
To mark the Hall of Fame’s 15th anniversary, the event expanded to three days and included a panel discussion featuring College of Business Hall of Fame inductees who shared valuable lessons with current COB students and fellow alumni, as well as a football tailgate celebration.
At the panel discussion, participants offered insights on topics including challenges faced, lessons learned, memories of their days at FIU, and details about how their FIU education has impacted their careers. The panel featured:
- Ignacio Urbieta – MBA ’85, CEO, Urbieta Oil Co.
- Mayi de la Vega – BBA ’81, CEO and founder, ONE Sotheby’s International Realty
- Malcolm Butters – MS ’83, president and co-founder, Butters Construction & Development
- Tibor Hollo – president, Florida East Coast Realty
The panel discussion also included panelists’ insights on dealing with rejection, the skills they look for in new hires and their secrets to success. Almost 100 students, alumni and faculty attended the September 10 event, which proved to be an excellent networking opportunity.
The 2014 Hall of Fame celebration extended into Saturday with the “BBQ & Bubbles” tailgate brunch held as the Golden Panthers prepared to face off against the Pittsburgh Panthers.