Ellen Rieveschl is no stranger to blazing the trail. During her studies at the University of Cincinnati, she was one of the first female qualifying members of the National Economics Honor Society before graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Management and Economics. She was one of the first women at Fifth Third Bank to be hired to a management role in the Trust Department, and later had a successful career in residential and commercial real estate.
Rieveschl didn’t stop with making her mark in the business world and the real estate business. The widow of George Rieveschl, inventor of the antihistamine Benadryl, has a love for community service. She is a long-time philanthropist and community volunteer—especially on our campus. Thousands of students have had their lives transformed thanks to the substantial financial support of The George and Ellen Rieveschl Endowed Scholarship and the Rieveschl Scientific Instrumentation Fund at NKU, providing a state-of-the-art science education and unparalleled research opportunities. Scholarship investments continue to assure gifted recipients the resources to realize their education and life dreams.
Rieveschl has made a particular impact on NKU’s College of Informatics. She recognized the importance of informatics—particularly cybersecurity—in the 21st century. She and George provided key early and ongoing support to the college, prompting the naming of the George and Ellen Rieveschl Digitorium in recognition of this support. She also serves as a special advisor to the Dean of the College of Informatics, and uses her time and experience to help position the college for growth and new opportunities. Rieveschl’s new Video Mural in the Griffin Hall Commons displays the research, creative activity and outreach work of NKU informatics students and faculty in a visually compelling way, while highlighting activities in the adjacent new JRG Cyber Threat Intelligence Lab.
In addition to the time and support she has given to NKU, Rieveschl has also been very active elsewhere in her community. She served as the first woman president of the Mt. Adams Civic Association, and has held board positions with the Covington Rotary, Friends of Covington and Forward Quest. She is a passionate supporter of the arts and has served on the boards of the Carnegie Arts Center, Cincinnati May Festival, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Taft Museum of Art. Rieveschl has also been active with her alma mater, serving on a variety of boards and committees with the University of Cincinnati Foundation and UC Medical School.
Given these accomplishments, it is no surprise that Rieveschl’s list of honors is as prestigious as it is long—ranging from the Northern Kentucky Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation’s Devou Cup to Northern Kentucky University’s Lincoln Award. For Ellen and her late husband George, giving back to the community has always been a way of life, and she continues to be an example to others of service and civic engagement.