Slane alumna inducted into Bradley's Centurion Society

October 17, 2012

By Brigitte Graf '13

One of the newest Bradley Centurions is an alumna of Slane College.

The Centurion Society, which honors graduates who bring national attention to the University, inducted Kary McIlwain '81 during Founder's Day celebrations. McIlwain is the president and CEO of Y&R Chicago, a marketing and communications company that specializes in advertising and social media. The company prides itself on "resisting the usual" in the way it approaches its clients and projects.

McIlwain graduated with a degree in communications with a focus in journalism and has been acknowledged by the Centurion Society for being an alumna who has made an impact in her field.

"It means a lot to me to be recognized by Bradley," she said during her return trip to campus. "Some people peak in high school, some people peak in college. I peaked in college. I loved it here, this place was perfect for me."

Being a member of the Centurion Society places McIlwain among politicians, military officers, community activist and other high-ranking business leaders who serve as examples of excellence and commitment for all who are or have been associated with Bradley.

McIlwain said the time she spent at Bradley taught her one significant lesson that helped carry her through her studies and into her communications career.

"There was a fantastic public relations professor here, Dr. Jim Erickson, and he really just taught us how to write," she said. "That is something that is so valuable and that you'll take with you everywhere."

After spending some time last week on campus for the induction ceremony, McIlwain said she is pleased with how the University is developing.

"I'm really excited about what's happening here in the communications department," she said. "I think there is a lot of cutting edge thinking that is going to make people better and more employable. I love to hire people who are good writers and highly motivated. I feel like that's exactly what is happening here."