Pershing E. MacAllister '40
1998 Distinguished Alumnus Award
Pershing E. (P.E.) MacAllister '40 took full advantage of his time at Carroll active in Phi Theta Pi, Pi Gamma Mu, Chi Sigma, Hinakaga, band and the track team. P.E.’s father, a WWI veteran, named him Pershing after General John Joseph “Black Jack” Pershing After graduation in 1940 majoring in history and minoring in speech and English, P.E. served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II.
Following his service, he joined his father in the family business, MacAllister Machinery, Indiana’s Caterpillar dealer. When P.E.’s father suffered a stroke, P.E. found himself at the helm of the business at the age of 32 leading the company to its current position as a leader in the business of farm implements.
In 1963, P.E. put his leadership to work for Carroll by joining the board of trustees. He has served ever since. During his tenure, including 17 years as chairman, MacAllister has been instrumental in spearheading several volunteer and development initiatives for Carroll and has donated more than $1 million to the college. His impact is seen across campus, not only through named facilities and scholarships, but through increasingly quality programs and opportunities made possible through his generosity.
The MacAllister Fellowship, funded by MacAllister and his wife Fran, is the highest honor a student can be awarded at Carroll supporting academically promising students with full tuition scholarships helping attract high-achieving students to the university.
MacAllister has served as an elder in the Presbyterian Church, has twice been moderator of his Presbytery, has been the moderator of two synods and has served on the General Assembly Council. He has been president of local and national trade associations, and has produced and hosted a number of television shows for local and national PBS stations.
A long–time admirer of opera, P.E. created and hosted the MacAllister Awards for opera singers. The MacAllister Awards stemmed from the Indiana Opera Theatre. The competition offered the largest non-restricted monetary awards in North America for young opera singers, age 36 and under. Many young opera singers credit the MacAllister Awards for helping them launch successful careers.
P.E. has served as a board member of many organizations and as an elder, deacon, and trustee of the Northminster Presbyterian Church. He has done public speaking on the Old Testament and wrote a book titled Tongue of the Nursling on that topic. He has received many awards including honorary doctorate, industry leadership and philanthropic awards, and two Sagamore of the Wabash awards.
To this day, P.E. continues his service on the Carroll Board of Trustees. In honor of P.E.’s achievements, the Distinguished Alumni Award for Service to Carroll from 1998 forward will be in the name of MacAllister.