The Collins College of Business honored three alumni and four graduating seniors during its annual Honors and Awards Banquet on May 2 at TU’s Kendall Theater. Allison Flusché (BSBA ’89), a principal with Stinnett and Associates was 2019 Outstanding Alumna, Tim Barklage (BSBA ’95), cofounder of BETTER LIFE was 2019 Outstanding Alumnus and Jacob Johnson (BSBA ’06), cofounder of Gitwit, was named the 2019 Fast Track Alumnus.
Flusché is currently a principal with Stinnett & Associates in Tulsa. For the past 11 years at Stinnett, she has specialized in establishing Internal audit functions and implementing first-year Sarbanes-Oxley compliance efforts for a variety of clients within the energy sector. Prior to joining Stinnett, Flusché spent more than 15 years working in the corporate sector for SemGroup Energy Partners, Blueknight Energy Partners, ConocoPhillips and PricewaterhouseCoopers. Flusché received her B.S in Business Administration with a major in accounting at The University of Tulsa in 1989 and is a Certified Public Accountant. Flusché has remained active at The University of Tulsa, participating throughout the years on the Graduate Business Program Advisory Board, mentoring TU graduate business students and serving as a member of TU Friends of Finance and Beta Alpha Psi. Throughout her career, she has continued to be an advocate for the recruiting and hiring of TU business students as the university liaison and primary recruiter for her employers. Flusché has also been active in the Oklahoma Business Ethics Consortium, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Tulsa Reading Partners and Women’s Energy Network. She is married to her college sweetheart, Frank Flusché and has two daughters: Ann Marie who is a biology pre-med and biomedical engineering major at The University of Tulsa; and Jessica, who is soon to be a senior at Bishop Kelly High School.
Barklage was raised in an environmentally conscious home long before it became a lifestyle, and has always committed to making a positive impact on the planet. After a successful career in the information technology services industry, he applied this mantra to entrepreneurship. In 2008, Barklage cofounded (along with his wife and a lifelong friend) BETTER LIFE, a company that introduced and educated consumers in non-toxic household cleaning products. He created the essence of BETTER LIFE with a no-compromise approach — he is the idea man and watchdog who ensured BETTER LIFE lived up to its mission of creating products that were safe for the environment and the people using them. Barklage’s approach to entrepreneurship is rooted in the belief that if authenticity is created and maintained throughout every aspect, the organization will be able to organically meet the challenges it faces. The products are sold within national retailers, and have been prominently featured in national publications, won awards and received industry accolades. Barklage regularly speaks about his entrepreneurial experiences and was a successful contestant on ABC’s The Shark Tank. Barklage recently led BETTER LIFE through a successful transaction event with BISSELL Homecare. Barklage currently serves on the board of directors at BETTER LIFE and leads its sales efforts. His wife, Nancy, and their two kids lead his heart, and the family recently relocated to the mountains of Colorado. He loves the outdoors and traveling where he pursues his interests of trail running, wilderness hiking, camping, skiing, mountain biking, competing in races and pretty much anything else that keeps him moving. Barklage earned his BSBA with a major in marketing at The University of Tulsa in 1995. Prior to cofounding BETTER LIFE, he spent eight years in client implementation, product development and product lifecycle governance at SAVVIS (CenturyLink).
Johnson is the cofounder of Gitwit, an innovation-focused agency that works with global and national brands to build new products, launch digital experiences and create marketing campaigns. As a strategist, Johnson leads the business model generation, stakeholder discovery and strategy formation of client and venture engagements. Over the past 10 years, Johnson has helped launch businesses, products and strategies in more than 100 countries in industries spanning healthcare, energy, construction, fintech and consumer technology. Gitwit has assembled one of the most diverse teams in the region with backgrounds in consumer behavior, economics, data science, product management, journalism, film, design and digital marketing. Johnson majored in marketing at The University of Tulsa.
David R. Lawson Outstanding Seniors
Four graduating seniors received the 2019 David R. Lawson Outstanding Senior award in recognition of their leadership and accomplishments while students at TU: Daniel Owens, finance; Sarah Otto, accounting and computer information systems; Madalyn Unseth, accounting and computer information systems; and Muriel Unseth, accounting and English.
From short-term study abroad programs to interning at an investment bank in Shanghai, China, Daniel Owens has tailored his Finance degree to have an international focus. During his time at TU, Owens used the vast resources provided by the university to make the most of his experience. He participated in extracurricular activities such as University Ambassadors, Student Finance Association, Beta Gamma Sigma, Capella Chambers Choir, Student Association and Reformed University Fellowship. This summer, Owens plans to work at Bank of Oklahoma as a corporate banking intern in the bank’s Kansas City offices. Additionally, he will return to the University of Tulsa in the fall as an orientation leader and will begin his Master’s in Business Administration.
Tulsa native Sarah Otto looks forward to using the skills and experiences she has gained from TU in her future career. After obtaining her Master of Accountancy from TU next year, Otto will pursue a CPA license. She plans to work as an IT auditor at a public accounting or advisory firm. While at TU, Otto majored in accounting and computer information systems. She was a member of Beta Alpha Psi, Information Technologists United, marching band, University Ambassadors and the Honors Program. She belongs to Beta Gamma Sigma and Phi Eta Sigma honor societies. With a passion for service, Otto volunteered with a local Girl Scouts troop to teach girls how to code. Her varied interests led her to interdisciplinary research on autonomous vehicles. She presented a poster at an engineering conference and gave a TEDx UTulsa talk with her research team in March 2019. She interned with Williams and will intern with Stinnett & Associates this summer.
As a double major in accounting and computer information systems, Madalyn Unseth enjoys bringing structure and efficiency to her life and to those around her. However, as a Spanish minor who studied for a semester in Spain, she also appreciates the beauty of the unknown and uncomfortable – such as conversing in a foreign language and navigating non-linear European streets. Her passion for welcoming others led her to become a University Ambassador at TU. She has also pursued encouraging others and building community through involvement in Reformed University Fellowship, a campus ministry. As an undergraduate, Unseth interned in Tulsa at Stinnett & Associates as an IT audit summer intern. She also was a National Merit Scholar, a Presidential Scholar, a member of the iTU organization for CIS majors, participated in the Spanish conversation club La Tertulia, sang in the TU Concert Chorale and tutored elementary school students through Reading Partners. After graduation, she is excited to begin a full-time position at Kansas State University as a technical support coordinator for the Office of Innovation and Evaluation, supporting nutrition research and community education.
Muriel Unseth’s undergraduate experience has benefited from the breadth and variety of programs offered at The University of Tulsa. As a National Merit Scholar and Presidential Scholar, she has pursued dual degrees in accounting and English with minors in education and religion. She is a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma business honor society as well as the Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society. She had the opportunity to study abroad in Stirling, Scotland, and has had internship experience in trust fund management and middle market public accounting. Unseth has been heavily involved in Reformed University Fellowship and volunteered as a tutor with Reading Partners at Kendall-Whittier Elementary before volunteering as a tutor in the TU writing center. She has accepted the Henneke Graduate Research Fellowship to return to TU in the fall to begin her M.A. in English.
Faculty and staff award recipients, honors graduates, certificate of merit recipients and college and department award recipients also were honored.