Barry McNamara  |  Published September 17, 2020

Bloomer Is Distinguished Alumnus

1983 graduate had long military career, then returned to alma mater and served as vice president for development and college relations.

MONMOUTH, Ill. – A 1983 graduate with a long record of service and successful leadership is this year’s recipient of Monmouth College’s Distinguished Alumnus Award.

During his tenure in the United States Armed Forces, Col. Steve Bloomer served in several leadership positions, culminating in his appointment as chief of staff for the Iowa Army National Guard. Among the honors Bloomer received was the Wisdom Award, voted on by fellow soldiers in the 334th Battalion.

STEVE BLOOMER '83: Will receive Distinguished Alumnus Award during virtual Oct. 9 ceremony. STEVE BLOOMER '83: Will receive Distinguished Alumnus Award during virtual Oct. 9 ceremony.After nearly three decades of service to his country, Bloomer decided to retire and begin a second career serving organizations he considered worthy and close to his heart. The first of those positions was at his alma mater.

Bloomer began his work at Monmouth as a development officer in 2007, traveling to build relationships and financial support. In less than two years, his leadership and management abilities earned him promotion to a director position, where he developed the College’s major gifts strategy. Bloomer was named vice president for development and college relations in 2014, overseeing fundraising in support of the College’s strategic plan and campus master plan.

“Monmouth College invested in me as a young man during my formative years and again during my transition from military career to civilian career,” said Bloomer. “It was at Monmouth that my combat engineer officer career was launched, and my curiosity for a lifetime of learning was ignited. I would describe my relationship with my alma mater as one of profound respect.”

Wrote his nominator for the award: “Steve has a positive energy that can be optimistic and contagious. He consistently provides leadership from his heart.”

Bloomer left Monmouth in 2017 to provide his skills to another organization in need: Phi Delta Theta, which is headquartered in Oxford, Ohio. He currently serves the international fraternity as its senior vice president. Although major gift programs are in their infancy with organizations such as Phi Delt, Bloomer helped close out a $12.7 million campaign two years ahead of schedule.

Since joining the Phi Delta Theta, Bloomer has hired and trained a new major gifts team and led it on another successful venture, surpassing a campaign launch goal of $3 million from 30 donors and securing a $1 million gift, something that has only happened a handful of times in fundraising for Greek organizations.

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