Alumni Association announces spring awards

Author: Erin Blasko

Main Building framed by Notre Dame Avenue trees. Photo by Matt Cashore/University of Notre Dame.
Main Building framed by Notre Dame Avenue trees. Photo by Matt Cashore/University of Notre Dame.

The University of Notre Dame Alumni Association has announced the winners of its annual spring awards, recognizing four members of the Notre Dame family for their outstanding achievements.

The association honored Timothy F. Sutherland and Martha H. Sutherland with the Dr. William P. Sexton Award; Robert M. Mundy, class of 1976 and 1981 (M.A.), with the James E. Armstrong Award; and Mary Meg McCarthy, class of 1980, with the Dr. Thomas A. Dooley Award.

The awards are typically presented at the spring board meeting and Alumni Association Leadership Conference, which was canceled this year because of the coronavirus. The association will instead honor the winners on campus at a later date.

Dr. William P. Sexton Award

Established in 2001, the Dr. William P. Sexton Award honors non-alumni of Notre Dame who have contributed outstanding service to the University and whose lives exemplify the spirit of the University.

Timothy and Martha Sutherland were presented with the award in recognition of their outstanding commitment to the University and its pursuit of fostering entrepreneurship, and for their generosity in establishing the Sutherland Ring Fund. Timothy Sutherland, the chairman of Middleburg Capital Development, holds a B.A. from Knox College and an M.B.A. from New York University. He has been a member of the Board of Trustees at the University of Notre Dame since 2012 and was elected a Fellow of the University in 2014. In addition, Tim Sutherland has served on the Mendoza College of Business Advisory Council and the Gigot Center Advisory Board and has impacted students directly through course presentations and individual mentorship.

Tim Sutherland remains one of the University’s biggest proponents of entrepreneurship since the founding of the Gigot Center and the building of Innovation Park. Recently, he dedicated significant time acting as one of the architects for the creation of the IDEA Center, the University’s center for commercialization and entrepreneurship.

To further support their belief that the University’s first priority is its students, Tim and Marti Sutherland established the Sutherland Ring Fund, an initiative designed to help support students in need to purchase a class ring, something they strongly believe each Notre Dame student deserves to don upon graduation.

The Sutherlands live in Middleburg, Virginia, and have two children, Cristin Sutherland Wipfler, Class of 2002, and David M. Sutherland, class of 2007 and 2010 (M.B.A.). 

“Notre Dame is a community that enables each of us to transcend the often-cited profession of ‘believing’ in God to truly ‘knowing’ Him and His existence,” Tim Sutherland said. “The energy and dialogue of our ND community are unique. The shared faith, conversation, and familial commitment allows the world to see us as different, attractive, successful, purposeful and happy.”

James E. Armstrong Award

Established in 1978, the James E. Armstrong Award is conferred on an alumnus who is a current or former employee of Notre Dame and has rendered distinguished service to the University.

Bob Mundy graduated from the University in 1976 with a degree in American Studies and returned for a master’s in government and international studies. After teaching high school social studies for seven years, Mundy joined the University’s Office of Admissions in 1983, where he served for 36 years.

Mundy began his work in admissions as a counselor and managed various projects for 20 years before assuming the role of director of admissions operations under then-Assistant Provost for Enrollment Dan Saracino. In 2010, he was named director of admissions under Associate Vice President for Undergraduate Enrollment Don Bishop, who was tasked with creating an Enrollment Division. Mundy directed a staff of more than 35 admissions professionals who evaluated more than 20,000 applications annually by the end of his tenure. He oversaw the creation of ever more talented and diverse undergraduate classes while maintaining a Catholic student population of more than 80 percent. Mundy also was a highly respected figure throughout higher education, serving on numerous boards, including The Common Application. He retired in August 2019, but remains active in on-campus projects as well as in the broader enrollment profession.

Mundy and his wife, Barb, are the parents of Clare Mundy, class of 2012, who currently serves the University as an associate director in the Office of the President.

“I can’t imagine a more humbling experience than receiving the Armstrong Award,” Mundy said. “When Dolly Duffy (executive director of the Alumni Association and associate vice president for University relations) called to share the news, I was literally speechless. To the Alumni Board of Directors, I thank you for this great honor.”

Dr. Thomas A. Dooley Award

Established in 1984, the Dr. Thomas A. Dooley Award is conferred on an alumnus or alumna, living or deceased, who has exhibited outstanding service to humankind.

Mary Meg McCarthy is an internationally recognized immigration law expert and is the executive director of the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC), one of the nation’s preeminent immigrant and human rights advocacy organizations. Through its unique approach integrating advocacy, impact litigation, legal counsel and public education, NIJC has advanced asylum protections in the courts while expanding access to counsel for detained children and adults. Under McCarthy’s leadership, NIJC has grown from a $1 million to a $10 million organization with a 100-person staff and a network of 2,100 pro bono attorneys who are essential to providing legal counsel to 11,000 low-income immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers annually.

Frequently quoted in major news outlets, including The New York Times, Washington Post and CNN, McCarthy has testified before Congress and at the United Nations. She is a member of the Chicago Bar Association and the American Bar Association, where she chaired its Commission on Immigration.

Earlier in her career, McCarthy worked in Chile as a Holy Cross Associate to help safeguard the rights of individuals. She earned her B.B.A. from Notre Dame and her J.D. from Loyola University Chicago School of Law. Her honors have included the Justice John Paul Stevens Award from the Chicago Bar Association, the Chicago Inn of Court 2015 Don Hubert Public Service Award, the Pax Christi 2013 Teacher of Peace Award and the Damen Award from Loyola University Chicago. She is a former trustee of the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago.

“I am deeply humbled and greatly honored by this award, which reflects the best of Notre Dame and Dr. Dooley’s truly extraordinary legacy of humanitarian care for refugees and those most in need in the developing world,” McCarthy said. “His life’s work and mission continues to bring healing and hope; it reminds each of us of our call to discipleship and service that responds to the marginalization, injustice and oppression that burdens the lives of so many.”

Celebrating its 152nd year in 2020, the Notre Dame Alumni Association furthers the University’s mission of faith, learning and service by facilitating more meaningful, lifelong relationships within the global Notre Dame family.

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Contact: Erin Blasko, assistant director of media relations, 574-631-4127,