A 1983 graduate of Vandalia Community High School who is a chemical engineer with a strong background in handling hazardous materials is this year’s lone selection of the Vandalia Alumni and Friends Foundation’s Distinguished Alumni Award.
Brian Donley will receive the award at this year’s All-School Reunion held by the foundation on Saturday, Sept. 30, at the Vandalia Moose Lodge.
In being selected for the honor, Donley joins the previous recipients of the award – Dr. Jeff Alender, Dr. Robert Shively, Warren Sperry, Robert Chandler, Tim Merriman, Jim Staff, Sid File and Kay Metzger Smith and Jean Stombaugh.
After graduating from VCHS in 1983, Donley, a licensed professional engineer in Missouri and Illinois, earned a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering in 1987 and his master’s degree in 2000, both from Washington University in St. Louis.
He has worked in various engineering, operations and management roles, as well as in positions for various companies, including director of environmental, health and safety at Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals.
He is a past member of the Missouri University’s Science and Technology Chemical Engineering Department’s industrial advisory council, serving as the council’s chair, and the MS&T Academy of Chemical Engineers.
Along with two others, Donley has also co-developed a hazardous materials emergencies short course. This class provides students with hands-on experience in managing and responding to hazardous materials incidents, allowing students to use their engineering education to resolve realistic haz-mat emergiences.
He serves his community as deputy chief of the St. Clair Special Emergency Services Association. This organization provides response capability for hazardous materials and technical rescue emergencies.
The organization also functions as part of the Metro East and Illinois mutual aid systems, responding to large-scale disasters and emergencies.