Benedictine University is home to a diverse group of alumni, successful in all walks of life. On the following pages, we aim to highlight and recognize the accomplishments of those that truly exemplify the Benedictine values of service, leadership and social contribution. These are just some of our alumni who are not only at the top in their respective fields but are also making a difference in their communities. We have recognized these individuals through special events, programs and awards.
Julie Harshbarger, C08
Kicker for the Chicago Blitz and Graphic Design & Digital Media Specialist for Fitch, Even, Tabin & Flannery LLP
Julie Harshbarger grew up in Rockton, Illinois and played soccer and football for Hononegah Community High School. Her talents on the soccer field attracted a scholarship offer from Rockford College, a NCAA Division III institution. While playing for the Lady Regents soccer team from 2004-2005, Harshbarger was twice named All-Northern Illinois-Iowa Conference.
After two years at Rockford College, Harshbarger transferred to Benedictine University during her junior year. At Benedictine she was heavily involved in athletics again, playing soccer and football and earned two more All-NIIA Conference titles for soccer. In 2007, Harshbarger had five goals and led the Benedictine women's soccer team with seven assists. She was named Second Team All-Northern Athletics Conference Women's Soccer her senior year. Harshbarger graduated from Benedictine University in 2008, earning her Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Studio Art.
In 2010, Harshbarger tried her luck with the Chicago Cardinals, part of the Continental Indoor Football League (CIFL). After showing up to multiple tryouts, Harshbarger was cut before the season started. Three weeks into the season, the Chicago Cardinals called her back and asked her to play. Harshbarger became the second woman ever to play in the CIFL and became the first ever female to make a field goal in an indoor football professional game. In 2011, Harshbarger joined the Chicago Knights, who replaced the Chicago Cardinals. During her season, she made 8 of 14 field goals, 19 of 26 points after touchdowns, and led the team in points scored with 43. On February 23, 2012, it was announced that Harshbarger had signed with the Chicago Vipers, who replaced the Chicago Knights in the CIFL. In 2014, Harshbarger signed with the Chicago Blitz. With this team, Harshbarger lead the CIFL in field goals and was named CIFL Special Teams Player of the Year. Most recently, she made the American Indoor Football League (AIF) 2015 team as first team offense kicker and was recognized as the 2015 Special Teams Player of Year.
Harshbarger is currently a graphic design and digital media specialist at Fitch, Even, Tabin & Flannery, an intellectual property law firm based in Chicago, Illinois. In this position, Harshbarger provides creative and innovative design solutions using print and digital media.
Outside of work, Harshbarger continues to dedicate her time to sports. She is a goalkeeping coach for the La Grange Celtics, training both boys and girls; she plays soccer recreationally for several teams; and she continues to play football as a placekicker. During the summer months, she is a kicker for the Rockton Rush of the Mid States Football League and during the winter and spring months she kicks for the Chicago Blitz of the American Indoor Football League.
View current alumni visionary and rising star award winners who have displayed leadership and innovation in their industry.