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Alumni, Students Gather for Annual Celebration

Jennifer Atkins, Naveen Modi, Joseph Boatwright, Ann Ludwick, James Snow, Katherine McPherson, Margaret Moss, Leslie Neal, Stephen Karbelk, Brian Ott, Gal Borenstein

On April 19, 2001, the George Mason University Alumni Association hosted its annual Celebration of Distinction awards dinner to recognize and honor several alumni, students, and faculty for their outstanding achievements.

The Alumnus of the Year Award was presented to Julie A. Holdren, B.S. Computer Science '94, president, CEO, and founder of Olympus Group, which specializes in web design, database integration, and decision support applications. Holdren also serves on various community and university boards and donates her company's time and technology skills to charitable organizations. She has received numerous entrepreneurial awards and has been profiled in several national media stories.

Craig B. Young, J.D. '82, received the Alumni Service Award. He is a member of the Alumni Association board and president of the Law Alumni Chapter. Young, a President's Circle donor, has worked to secure scholarship funds for incoming students and has helped to establish the Law Alumni Chapter golf tournament and the Judicial and Legislative Reception. Young's dedicated record of service has set a standard of particular distinction and brought honor to the Alumni Association.

The Faculty Member of the Year Award was presented to Don E. Kash, John T. Hazel Sr. and Ruth D. Hazel Professor of Public Policy. Kash has lectured at numerous colleges, corporations, and government organizations. He also has served on numerous advisory and editorial boards. Kash's vision, leadership, and hard work represent the finest of faculty commitment to teaching.

The Senior of the Year Award was presented to Sabrina Dagostino for her contributions to academic excellence, student life, university and community service, and leadership. A repeated member of the Dean's List, Dagostino graduates in May with a degree in Systems Engineering, and plans to attend GMU School of Law in the fall.

The Peter C. Forame Student Leader Scholarship was awarded to Teena M. Hartsoe, a third-year student in the School of Management. She works full time, is chapter president of the Alpha Phi Omega national coed service fraternity, and serves in the Army Reserve.

The John C. Wood Scholarship was awarded to John William Harouff, a third-year history major and art history minor, who has maintained a grade point average of more than 3.9 while at George Mason. Harouff has had to overcome a learning disorder that makes him an exceptionally slow reader and poor speller. Although he has participated in many music and theater groups in the past, for now, school is his top priority. Harouff takes his role as a student and representative of George Mason University both in the local community and abroad very seriously.

Alumna Cin Bickel, B.A. Communication '99, was awarded the John C. and Louise P. Wood Graduate Scholarship for her determination and dedication to the pursuit of learning. Bickel is currently working on a master's degree in communication. In addition to owning and operating two small businesses, Bickel has contributed greatly to the university and her community by working as a teacher's assistant and a tutor for the Computer Learning Center, volunteering for the GMU Communications banquet and Women's Studies program, and serving as president of Hybla Valley Civic Association.

The Department of History and Art History presented its Outstanding Graduate Award to Stephen M. Karbelk, B.A. History '92. Karbelk currently works for Fox & Associates, a regional real estate auction company that specializes in providing auction services to corporate clients in Texas.

The M.P.A. Alumni Chapter Alumni Special Service Award was presented to Ann M. Ludwick, M.P.A. '95. Ludwick works as the business manager for George Mason's Department of Public and International Affairs.

This year, there were two recipients of the Distinguished Nursing Alumni Award: Margaret Moss, B.S.N. '82, M.S.N. '91, and Leslie Neal, Ph.D. '98. Moss is a part-time Ph.D. student and a full-time faculty member in the College of Nursing and Health Science. Neal is currently an assistant professor at Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia, where she teaches in the nursing program.

The Department of Communication Outstanding Alumni Award was awarded to Brian Ott, B.A. Speech Communication '91. He currently teaches at Colorado State University, where he is an assistant professor in speech communication.

The Telecommunications Master of Arts Program Outstanding Alumni Award was presented to Gal S. Borenstein, M.A. Telecommunications '94. Borenstein launched The Borenstein Group, one of only five Washington, D.C., area advertising agencies that specialize in technology marketing and advertising for start-up to mid-sized companies.

The School of Information Technology and Engineering's Outstanding Alumnus in Technical Management award was presented to Suneeth Nayak, M.S. Computer Science '94. Nayak currently is the vice president of technology at Information Management Consultants, Inc. in McLean, Virginia.

The School of Information Technology and Engineering's Outstanding Alumna of the Year in Entrepreneurial Excellence award was presented to Anousheh Ansari, B.S. Electrical Engineering and Computer Science '88. Ansari is the vice president of Sonus Networks and general manager of the IntelligentIP division.

University Career Services awarded the Career Connection Alumni Award to Katherine M. McPherson, B.A. Communication '96. McPherson works as a university recruiter for Booz-Allen & Hamilton.

The following awards and scholarships were presented to students at the Celebration of Distinction:

The ICAR Alumni Chapter Mary Lynn Boland Outstanding Student Achievement Award--James A. Snow

The GMU School of Law Alumni Chapter Dean Engle Memorial Scholarship--Jennifer Sands Atkins

The GMU School of Law Alumni Chapter Scholarship--Naveen Modi

The New Century College Graduating Senior Internship Award--Joseph Boatwright, Michelle Morton, and Walid Zeytoun

Award recipients Don Kash, Julie Holdren, Craig Young (photo on left) and John Harouff, Sabrina Dagostino, Teena Hartsoe, Cin Bickel (photo on right).
Award recipient John Harouff enjoys dinner with Bill Harouff and Lorain Harouff (photo on left). Attendees are entertained by The Haase Quartet (photo on right).

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