Ben attended West Vigo from 1972-76 where he participated in cross country, track, and basketball, earning 8 varsity letters. He was presented with Indiana High School Athletic Association’s Mental Attitude Award in Cross Country in 1975 and also received West Vigo’s Kenny Graham Award for the outstanding athlete as a senior. Ben was also the 1976 Valedictorian, graduating with a perfect 4.0 grade point average.
As a four year letter winner in cross country, Ben owns the third fasted 2 ½ mile time in West Vigo’s history at 12:17. He also olds the fasted ever freshman time and is a member of the 1st and 2nd fasted teams. His teams won numerous conference championships and achieved high placements in Sectional and Regional competitions. As a senior, Ben placed 1st in the Western Indian Conference, 2nd in the Sectional, 5th in the Regional and qualified for the State Cross-Country Meet. He also won the 15 km National Championship race in 1975 with a time of 52:15.
Earning four letters in track, Ben ran the ½ mile, mile and mile relay virtually every meet. Ben was still the record holder for the 440 (51.1) and 880-yard races (1:55.2) and held the second fastest 1 mile time when the metric system came along. Winning the Sectional Meet for the 880-yard run his senior year, he also qualified for the State Track Meet in that event. He placed 6th, and was then selected to represent Indiana in the Tri-State meet between Indiana, Ohio and Michigan.
In 1980, Ben completed his Mechanical Engineering degree in Mechanical Engineering at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, graduating Magna Cum Laude. He went on to work for Marathon Oil Company, and enjoyed a 30-year career in a wide variety of engineering, supervision and management roles across the US and in Scotland.
Since 2010, Ben has been President and CEO of two Alaskan oilfield service companies, Kakivik Asset Management, LLC and CCI Industrial Services, LLC. The companies employ nearly 500 people and have doubled in size during Ben’s five years at the helm. Ben is a respected and passionate industry leader, training and mentoring others in team-building, culture change and safety leadership principles.
Ben is married to his wife of 25 years, Martha. They have lived in Alaska for the past 17 years where Martha has family. Ben and Martha have two children, Davi (18) and Miriam (14). Ben is active in his church, serving in leadership, teaching and leading worship. He also serves on a number of non-profit and industry boards and councils. In his free time, Ben enjoys playing guitar, singing, hiking, kayaking, reading and spending time with his family.
Ben’s fondest WVHS athletic memory is the annual Shakamak cross-country camp, where the team would run, eat, sleep and play a killer whiffle ball tournament. It was a great time of developing friendships and team spirit, while preparing for the season ahead