Sterling College announces 2018 Alumni Award winners

Homecoming 2018 - Sterling College
Thursday, September 27, 2018

Sterling College has announced its Alumni Award winners for 2018 to be recognized at Homecoming on Oct. 4-6, 2018. The Distinguished Service Award will be presented to Paul Buchanan ’53, the Alumni Award will be awarded to Phil ’85 and Laila (Ingalls) Brownlee ’85 and the Young Alumni Award will be given to Jonathon Federwisch ’05.

Buchanan graduated from Sterling with a degree in history and worked for the Sterling Bulletin during his time at the College. Buchanan went on to serve in the Army before graduating with distinction from the University of Kansas Law School in 1958. He served Sedgwick County as district judge and retired as chief judge in 2003.

Buchanan has served Sterling College on the Alumni Council, has financially supported Sterling and was recognized in the Sterling 100 in 1988. An ardent supporter of his community, Buchanan is involved with his church, with the American Red Cross as a driver delivering blood to hospitals, Kansas State Historical Society, Kansas Historical Foundation and Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Society.

Phil Brownlee earned a degree in accounting and business administration and was involved in many campus activities including tennis, student newspaper and served as SGA president. He is currently the executive director of the Medical Society of Sedgwick County, the largest county medical society in Kansas. In addition to directing the operations of the Medical Society, he oversees four companies affiliated with the Medical Society and serves on several boards of directors.

Laila Brownlee earned a degree in English and secondary education. She was also involved in the student newspaper as well as choir and dormitory life. She has held several roles in education and after working in the Wichita Public Schools, she now volunteers her time to assist families in the refugee community as they work to get established in a new country.

Federwisch graduated from Sterling with a degree in elementary education. He currently teaches in the Victor Valley Union High School District in Apple Valley, California. Jonathon and his wife, Johanna, are strong supporters of missions and have lead multiple trips to Mexico with their youth group. They have helped rebuild churches and homes, hosted vacation Bible school through the local church and engaged in street ministry. They have supported Sterling College mission trips over the past 10 years, impacting 150 Sterling students.

Sterling College’s Homecoming runs October 4-6, 2018 and will feature traditional activities and events including reunions, parade, games and more. For more information, visit or call 620-278-4228.

Sterling College is a Christ-centered, four-year college located in Sterling, Kansas, with a mission to develop creative and thoughtful leaders who understand a maturing Christian faith. For more information, visit