Distinguished Alumni Recipients
Bria Hawkins (class of 2013) is a Philadelphia native and full-time Fine Arts Educator. Bria began attending the Academy of the New Church Girls' School in 2009 as a rare freshman in Glenn Hall. As the oldest of five siblings, Bria adjusted to life as a dorm girl quickly and created many life-long friendships. Throughout her time at the Academy, Bria participated in many different clubs, sports, and activities, including being the 2011 Oratorical, writing and illustrating a children’s book for Senior Project, and serving as the 2012-2013 DEKA president. Bria went on to study English Literature and Fine Arts at Saint Joseph’s University, graduating in 2017 and pursuing a career in Art Education. Today, Bria is still teaching art to future leaders of the world, while simultaneously pursuing a personal career in illustration. Bria's personal illustrated work can be found on all social medias as @SpellboundSketches.
Diane Morey Fehon (class of 1973) grew up in Texas and came to the Academy Girls School for Junior and Senior years. She participated in theater both years and served as Factores President her senior year.
Diane attended the Bryn Athyn College until March 1975, when she married Bill Fehon and moved to Charlotte NC. Both Bill and Diane worked on their college degrees: a Bachelor’s Degree in American History for her, and a Master’s in Microbiology for him. Bill and Diane moved back to Bryn Athyn in 1977, first living in Stuart Hall as houseparents for 5 years, then building a home in the borough. Bill taught Science & Math in the Boy’s School, and Diane worked at Glencairn Museum, first in photography, then as the Education Coordinator. They were blessed with five sons and a bustling household.
Diane retired from the museum world in 2015 to start an organic BBQ Sauce business with her son, Jason, which then grew into a brewery in 2019, located in Glenside, PA. They are named Bill’s Best BBQ and Bill’s Best Brewery, after Bill, who died in 2020, after 16 years with a rare form of dementia, Fronto-Temporal Dementia, or FTD.
Diane was given a second chance at happiness when she met Steve Ozer. They like watching Indie films, going to concerts, and traveling. A wedding is planned for May of 2024. In her spare time, Diane enjoys rock wall climbing and watercolor painting.
Nick Heier (class of 2003) grew up in and around Philadelphia. He was headed to the Air Force Academy after high school, but then 9/11 happened. Some guys from the ANC football team were outside the Marine Corps recruiting station the first day it re-opened. Mr. Heier left for Basic Training three days after graduation. He didn’t feel right seeking a commission and having to lead without first being led. No one thought Iraq or Afghanistan would last as long back then.
Mr. Heier became a combat engineer and spent his first enlistment in Japan but most of his military time was with the 1st Marine Raider Battalion (then 1st Marine Special Operations Battalion). He was deployed to the Helmand Province Afghanistan, the Philippines, and throughout South-East Asia. He finished his career at Special Operations Command –North in Colorado Springs.
Mr. Heier enrolled in an undergraduate college program while in a tent in Fallujah. He graduated from Colorado State University with a BS in Business while in the Southern Philippines. He then completed a double master’s at Arizona State University where he graduated with distinction in December 2022 with Masters of Science degrees in Biomimicry and Construction Management and Technology. Mr. Heier is headed to Australia for a Ph.D. position at Griffith University. He will be researching evolutionary and innovation system dynamics in the context of infrastructure and development projects.
Mr. Heier and his wife have been married for 16 years and have 4 kids together. All he wants to do next is keep solving hard problems for the right reasons. He says, “Hopefully, it amounts to something that helps the guys coming up behind me.”
Steve Hendricks (class of 1973) was born in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, Canada, and now resides in Kempton, Pennsylvania. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in History and Philosophy from Bryn Athyn College in 1977.
After several years of working as a carpenter, Mr. Hendricks formed his own company, Hendricks Woodworking, that specialized in work other carpenters were hesitant to take on: stairways, curved moldings, architectural doors, etc. He soon realized that entryways and challenging joinery were a niche he could study and perfect. The company name was then changed to Historic Doors.
As Historic Doors grew, the complexity of the projects increased. Mr. Hendricks sought answers from precedent found in traditional architecture. As his knowledge deepened, he sought to share it with others. Through the years he taught professional workshops and college courses, as well as various curricula to high school students.
The company was established forty-two years ago and is now a thriving family business. Historic Doors designs and fabricates wood doors and traditional joinery for universities, prominent buildings, and residences throughout the country.
Mr. Hendricks' belief that beauty is objective and can manifest in the built environment has inspired his business and continued learning about the nature of Order. He believes through the study of traditional architecture, proportion, and quadrivial geometry, Order in nature can be reflected in what is built, and can in turn, inspire the noblest ambitions of the human spirit. The company recognizes the sweet spot of a project is found in the harmonious union of design and craftsmanship, contributing to the timeless tradition of beauty.