As the highest honor a Mays Business School graduate can receive, recipients of the Mays Outstanding Alumni Award are recognized for leading lives of distinction and embodying the Aggie core values of loyalty, integrity, excellence, leadership, selfless service and respect.
Coming from different backgrounds and walks of life, these recipients are chosen for their activity in their communities and continued involvement within the Mays community. Mays recognized the three 2018 Outstanding Alumni inductees at the 26th Year Outstanding Alumni Awards Dinner on April 5.
The honorees are Mike Shaw ’68, Fred Heldenfels IV ’79, and Fred Caldwell ’82.
So far, Mays has honored 83 former students who have reached outstanding achievements and have made significant contributions within their respected fields, as well as within Mays and their surrounding communities.
Mike Shaw ’68 is chairman and CEO of Mike Shaw Automotive, a family owned and operated company with two generations working side by side. Shaw was named Time Magazine’s Dealer of the Year in 2012.
Shaw graduated with a bachelor’s degree in management.
After graduation, Shaw became an officer in the United States Army and spent one year in Vietnam. After serving his country, he returned home to refocus his career in the automotive industry.
At the dinner, Shaw said he is proud of his Aggie heritage and credits it with getting him to where he is today. He walked across the stage of G. Rollie White Coliseum as part of the first graduating class of the business school almost 50 years ago to the date. His brother also graduated at the same time.
“At times like this, we realize how important it is to have families and friends who got us where we are,” he said. “The head honcho always gets the award, but it’s the people who make things what they are.” He said he took into his business career the formal education he received from Texas A&M, as well as the core values that are instilled here. For instance, he said, excellence allows everyone to be successful, while selfless service is the term for giving back to communities.
Fred Heldenfels IV ’79 is president and CEO of Heldenfels Enterprises, which specializes in the manufacture and installation of precast/prestressed concrete structures.
Heldenfels received the Aggie 100 Award in 2005, 2006, and 2008, as well as the Association of Former Students Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2015.
He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in marketing.
He said at the Outstanding Alumni Dinner that one has to “wake up every morning and re-earn that kind of recognition.” He said the three questions that often come up in his life are “What do you work for?” “Who do you work for?” and “Why do we work?” For him, the answers are all based on stewardship and serving others. “I like the phrase ‘lead servant’ rather than ‘servant leadership,’ because every day I want to be the first one to step out and lead with conviction.”
Fred Caldwell ’82 is president and CEO of Caldwell Companies in Houston. He was the founding partner of Caldwell Nyberg Interests in 1990, later renamed Caldwell Companies. Mr. Caldwell received the Aggie 100 Award in 2005.
Caldwell serves on the board of directors of the Cy-Fair Educational Foundation; is a former member of the 12th Man Foundation Executive Board; is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Board at Mays; is a member of the Aggie Real Estate Network; and is on the board of directors and was past chairman for the Lone Star College System District Foundation. He also was a three-year letterman on the football team at Texas A&M.
Caldwell graduated with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and a master’s degree in finance.
Caldwell said at the dinner that his company’s mission statement and purpose – “to honor God, by stewarding resources, cultivating positive, lasting relationships and building extraordinary communities that enrich lives.” – reflect his values. He said in his speech he and his wife Susan started the company with $10,000 in the bank.