W&J to Honor Susan Ralston ’85 with Maurice Cleveland Waltersdorf Award

Created: April 16, 2018
Last Updated: July 6, 2020

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WASHINGTON, PA (April 16, 2018) – Washington & Jefferson College (W&J) will honor alumna Susan Ralston ’85 with the 2018 Maurice Cleveland Waltersdorf Award.

Learn more about the Maurice Cleveland Waltersdorf Award

Ralston has spent her entire career in the banking industry, most recently as chief operating officer and senior vice president at Dollar Bank, headquartered in Pittsburgh. Previous to that position, she was the president/CEO of Bank @lantec for more than 22 years. During that time, she led the effort to change the charter of the institution from a federal credit union to a federal mutual savings bank, becoming the first credit union to convert in Virginia and the 25th in the country in 2004. In 2016, Mrs. Ralston successfully led the effort to merge with Dollar Bank, the largest independent mutual bank in the country.

Mrs. Ralston earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from W&J and a master’s degree in business administration from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va. She is also a graduate of the American Banker Association’s Stonier Graduate School of Banking (Georgetown University) and the Hampton Roads Civic Leadership Institute.

She also serves on the board of directors of the Central Business District Association in Virginia Beach, and on the American Bankers Association Mutual Institutions Council, the Credit Union Committee, the Virginia Bankers Association’s Governmental Relations Committee and the Executive Women’s Leadership Council. Inside Business Magazine selected Ralston as one of the “Outstanding Women in Business” in Hampton Roads in 2010.

In addition to her work in the banking industry, Ralston is the founder and executive director of the Pediatric Proton Foundation, a Virginia non-profit corporation. After her 2-year-old son’s diagnosis of Ewing sarcoma in 2007, she became a dedicated advocate for children’s cancer initiatives and specifically pediatric proton therapy. The Foundation conducts an annual survey providing valuable data regarding patterns of care with pediatric proton therapy in the United States. This work was published in the International Journal of Particle Therapy.

Originally raised in Washington, Pa., she lives in Virginia Beach with her husband, Jim, and her 12 year-old-son, Jacob.

The Maurice Cleveland Waltersdorf Awards for Innovative Leadership recognizes outstanding alumni and students of Washington & Jefferson College who attain a high level of achievement and exemplify the spirit and leadership qualities manifested by Dr. Maurice C. Waltersdorf.

The Waltersdorf Awards honor the late Dr. Waltersdorf, who served as a professor and chairman of the Department of Economics at the College for 32 years. He initiated numerous innovative changes that shaped the Department of Economics and its students.

About Washington & Jefferson College

Washington & Jefferson College, located in Washington, Pa., is a selective liberal arts college founded in 1781. Committed to providing each of its students with the highest-quality undergraduate education available, W&J offers a traditional arts and sciences curriculum emphasizing interdisciplinary study and independent study work. For more information about W&J, visit www.washjeff.edu, or call 888-W-AND-JAY.

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