The SCC Alumni Association honored two new Distinguished
Alumni during SCC’s 2020 commencement ceremonies on
West Burlington 2020 Distinguished Alum, John Schulz, and
Keokuk 2020 Distinguished Alum, Dr. Gary Mansheim, delivered
keynote speeches at each campus’ respective commencement
A Mediapolis High School graduate, John Schulz earned his
degree from SCC in 1963 after serving in the Army National
He continued on to Iowa State University to complete a
degree in engineering, then attended Xavier University in
Cincinnati, OH, where he earned his MBA.
Schulz began his career at General Motors in Dayton, OH,
where he participated in GM’s air bag development program
and drove the first airbag-equipped car out of Detroit.
After GM, he went to work for JI Case where he rose through
the ranks to become vice president of worldwide construction
equipment engineering, traveling the world to monitor various
Case engineering groups.
He and his family returned to Burlington in 1993 when he
purchased Kline Manufacturing, now Flint Cliffs Manufacturing.
Schulz’s community volunteer resume is impressive, including
stints with the Southeast Iowa Regional Airport Board, the
Community Foundation Board, and Junior Achievement.
Honors include Business Person of the Year, Manufacturer of
the Year, and the Mayor’s Award.
Schulz told the graduates a story of a plane that took off in
Burlington without a pilot, circling the area until it crashed in a
field. He said witnessing that spectacle gave him insight to the
need for direction.
“Right now I think your lives are like the airplane. You’re ready
to take off, but it won’t fly without a pilot,” he said. “We all need
Schulz shared five keys to success, including not being afraid
to take chances, managing your temperament, cultivating an
adventurous spirit, work/life balance, and believing in yourself.
“You’ve learned far more than you realize,” Schulz told the
graduates. “You can do great things. Build on that to make it
happen, and appreciate your accomplishments.”
Dr. Mansheim graduated from Central Lee High School with
a dream of becoming a physician. He started his educational
journey at SCC, graduating in 1973.
Upon his graduation, he transferred to the University of
Iowa to complete his bachelor’s degree and continued on to the
university’s School of Medicine.
Dr. Mansheim realized southeast Iowa had a profound need
for primary care when he settled in the area. Working with other
practitioners, he established Burlington Family Practice in West
Burlington in 1990, which has grown to 20 providers. Since its
inception, the practice has had over 1.5 million clinic visits.
It has always been his goal to improve access to high quality,
compassionate, affordable medical care for residents in the
Dr. Mansheim credits SCC instructors Fred Karre, John
Breshears, and Jim Ingemanson for giving him a quality science
education foundation that led to his success.
Like Schulz, Dr. Mansheim urged Keokuk campus graduates
to believe in themselves.
“You have been given the tools and capability to successfully
effect change,” he said. “Each and every one of you are
exceptional. You can change your life and help your family, help
your community, if you work hard and believe in yourself.”
SCC continues to seek upstanding alumni to honor
with the annual Distinguished Alumni award. To nominate
someone, contact the Foundation Office: (319) 208-5065 or