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2005 Donald D. Graham, BSBA’58

2005 Alumni Merit Award Recipient

Donald D. Graham, BSBA’58

May 13, 2005

Mr. Donald D. Graham was raised in the small town of O'Neill, Nebraska, and is a descendant of one of the town's founding fathers. He attributes his business and personal success to following the Christian values ingrained during his youth in rural O'Neill.

Following a two-year stint in the U.S. Army, 82nd Airborne Division, Mr. Graham resumed studies at Creighton University. In 1958, he graduated with a bachelor of science in business administration degree. A year later, he earned CPA certification from the state of Nebraska.

While at Creighton, Mr. Graham met and worked for Mr. John P. Begley. They joined a colleague in forming the CPA firm of Begley, Herbert & Graham, providing tax and business consultancy to various enterprises in the Midwest. During this time, Mr. Graham also served as an adjunct faculty member at Creighton. Although the CPA firm enjoyed great success, Mr. Graham found himself ready for a change in career focus. He chose to shift direction from providing tax services for others to more closely managing his own business interests. By carefully acquiring declining businesses, with a potential for turnaround, and investing in commercial and farm properties, Mr. Graham laid the foundation for a rewarding entrepreneurship.

Today, Mr. Graham is chairman and CEO of a group of companies headquartered in Omaha with worldwide operations. The companies provide construction and industrial services.

Throughout his career, Mr. Graham also has generously offered his time and expertise to numerous boards. For more than forty years, he has freely provided financial counsel to the Benedictine Sisters in Atchison, Kansas. In Omaha, he has been a leadership contributor to Omaha's Sacred Heart School, as well as a loyal and generous supporter of Creighton University.

Creighton University salutes Mr. Graham's adherence to his principles in developing a successful business enterprise. In addition, his generosity in serving others clearly reflects a core value of this University. Therefore it is with pride and appreciation that Creighton University confers upon Mr. Donald D. Graham the Alumni Merit Award for the College of Business this thirteenth day of May, two-thousand and five.