St. Ambrose honors four with McMullen Award


DAVENPORT — St. Ambrose University honored four individuals Dec. 4 with its McMullen Award, named in honor of St. Ambrose’s founder, Bishop John McMullen. The recipients are Father William Dawson, Father Edmond Dunn, and Dimitri and Kathy Papageorgiou.

The honors were bestowed at the end of Mass Dec. 4 in Christ the King Chapel on the university campus.

Fr. Dawson graduated from St. Ambrose in 1950 and was ordained a priest in 1954. He returned to his alma mater in 1961, serving as student chaplain from 1968-74 and earning four Professor of the Year awards during his 40-year career as professor of philosophy. He was instrumental in forming the student organization Ambrosians for Peace and Justice and the interdisciplinary minor in Peace and Justice. Fr. Dawson retired from St. Ambrose in 2005. Currently professor emeritus, Fr. Dawson has remained active in the university community and assists with ministry at St. Anthony Parish in Davenport.

Fr. Dunn graduated from St. Ambrose in 1958 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1972. He began his professional career at St. Ambrose in 1975 as a professor of theology, and also served as rector and spiritual director of St. Ambrose Seminary. Fr. Dunn chaired the Theology Department for many years and was instrumental in forming the Youth Ministry program, the Master of Pas­toral Theology degree program, and the interdisciplinary minor in Peace and Justice. He led students on spring break service trips to David School in David, Ky., for nearly 25 years.


Fr. Dunn also contributed to the music department, directing the chorale and several musical productions. His is professor emeritus of theology, retiring in June 2010. Fr. Dunn has been serving at St. Peter Parish in Cosgrove and St. Mary Parish in Oxford since 2001.

After two years in the Navy, Dimitri Papageorgiou moved from his native Greece to Centerville, Iowa, where he met his future wife, Kathy. He earned degrees in accounting and business from Truman State University, Kirksville, Mo. The Papageorgious moved to the Quad-Cities, where Dimitri took a position as comptroller for a local wine and spirits business. In 1984 he started his own fine wine and beer distribution company — Dimitri Wine and Spirits — which remains in the Quad-Cities. Kathy was an adjunct English teacher from 1990-2000. During that time she completed a B.A. in theology and took graduate level theology classes at St. Ambrose.

The Papageorgious are active members of the Quad Cities and St. Ambrose communities. They are among the founders of the St. Ambrose University Wine Festival, and have helped to raise more than $500,000 for student scholarships over the past decade.

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