Town leaders receive BSU alumni awards


Zionsville Town Council Vice President Brad Burk and former Zionsville Mayor Jeff Papa are among 16 Ball State University alumni who were recently recognized by BSU for their service and achievements.

Papa was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award and Burk received the Alumni Award of Achievement.

CIZ 0919 COM AlumAwards1

Burk earned his bachelor’s degree from BSU in 1991 and received his master’s in 1992. According to BSU, he has been successful in leveraging the complete BSU experience to live out his purpose: Doing good and sparking positive change each and every day.

“My time at BSU was incredibly impactful to my professional career and to my service on the town council,” Burk said. “In both instances, my college experience provided invaluable early leadership experiences that also inspired me to serve the greater good.”

Burk was elected to the Zionsville Town Council in 2019 as an at-large representative. He recently celebrated 25 years of service to the American Cancer Society, where he is the senior executive director for Indiana.

CIZ 0919 COM AlumAwards2

Papa graduated from BSU in 1999 with a degree in applied business economics from the Miller College of Business. He was the Zionsville Town Council president in 2013 and 2014 and became the town’s first mayor in 2015.

According to BSU, Papa has been faithful in serving BSU in many ways since he graduated and is committed to recruiting and hiring a number BSU students and alumni as either interns or employees through his involvement in many different organizations.

“My master’s degree at Ball State has been extremely helpful in considering governmental budgets and commercial negotiations,” Papa said. “Thanks to BSU, I was also able to work in Korea for a large company for a time and that experience was invaluable.”

Papa serves on the Zionsville Community Schools board. He also organizes BSU’s annual Economics Club Day at the Indiana State House.

An alumni awards ceremony will take place in October during homecoming week at BSU.