The Mason Spirit

Above, from left, Rita M. Carty, Catherine M. Hudgins, Nicole E. Harris, Catherine Sevcenko, Erin L. Ogburn, Sunjeet S. Randhawa, Cesar G. Soriano, Sonia M. Bright, Frouzan Kabiri, Robert C. Steele, Hiromi Akaya Robinson, and Richard J. Kelly.

Sally and Alan Merten with Michael and Jane Anzilotti

Above, from left, Cassandra Pingree, Michelle R. Cowin-Gantz, Lori E. Marchessault, Elizabeth Waverly Tinsley, Lloyd E. Duck, Carolyn A. Taylor, Michael G. Anzilotti, and Corinne Kosbob.

Alumni, Students, and Faculty Are Recognized at 2002 Celebration of Distinction

On Tuesday, April 2, the George Mason University Alumni Association hosted its annual Celebration of Distinction awards dinner to recognize and honor several alumni, students, and faculty members for their outstanding achievement and contributions to the university.

Michael Anzilotti, M.B.A. '83, was honored as the Alumnus of Year. Anzilotti earned his degree from George Mason while working at First Virginia Bank, where he has become president and chief executive officer. He has been instrumental in securing philanthropic support from the bank for student scholarships and an endowed faculty fellowship in the School of Management. Anzilotti has been a member of the George Mason University Foundation since 1999 and is currently working to secure significant gifts for the Campaign for George Mason from other Northern Virginia community leaders.

This year's Alumni Service Award was presented to Carolyn A. Taylor, B.S.N. '78, M.S. Nursing Administration '86, and M.B.A. '94. Taylor is principal and director of operations at Taylor-Oden Enterprises Inc. and an adjunct professor in George Mason's College of Nursing and Health Science (CNHS). She serves as membership chair for the CNHS Alumni Chapter and is active on the Diversity Advisory Board and in the Sigma Theta Tau Honor Society. She also served as chair of the Community Services Committee of the George Mason Executive M.B.A. Alumni Chapter.

"Truly inspirational" is how students have described Lloyd Duck, an associate professor in the Graduate School of Education (GSE). Recipient of the Faculty Member of the Year Award, Duck joined George Mason in 1973, serving as coordinator for secondary teacher education at George Mason from 1984 to 1994. Students have rated Duck's teaching at the highest levels consistently throughout his tenure. In addition, his advisees have often described him as interested in their education and personal welfare. Duck is the author or co-author of many publications, including Teaching with Charisma and Understanding American Education: Its Practices, Past, and Promise.

Broadside editor-in-chief Cassandra Pingree, a communication major, was recognized as Senior of the Year. A role model for other students, Pingree demonstrates integrity, high ethical standards, and leadership qualities in all that she does. A member of Lambda Pi Eta, the communication honor society, and recipient of the Kevin Athari Scholarship, she has devoted the past four years to improving the Broadside student newspaper for its readers and its contributors.

Alumna Michelle R. Cowin-Gantz, B.I.S. Family Counseling '01, was awarded the John C. and Louise P. Wood Graduate Scholarship. Currently a GSE graduate student and a single mother to three young children, she has excelled academically while battling recurring bouts of cancer. She has been recognized as an outstanding graduate student in the GSE, is a member of the Golden Key National Honor Society, and received the Dr. Lucille G. Shandloff Endowed Award. Active in the George Mason community, she is involved in the Women's Coalition, the Women's Studies Program, and the Health and Wellness Center. Corinne Kosbob received an honorable mention.

The recipient of this year's John C. Wood Scholarship is Elizabeth Waverly Tinsley, a first-year foreign language major, who has impressively overcome a diagnosis of anxiety depression disorder and is now an outstanding student at George Mason. Working part time to raise money for her tuition, she is committed to improving herself through education and to improving her community by contributing her time and talents. Her list of extracurricular activities is as impressive as her performance in the classroom, where she has attained a 3.934 grade point average.

The Peter C. Forame Student Leader Scholarship recipient was Lori E. Marchessault. A second-year integrative studies major with a concentration in dance therapy, she came to George Mason with exceptional leadership skills and continues to use those skills. She has served in leadership positions in the Pride Alliance and on the advisory committee for SafeZone Project, a prejudice reduction and tolerance program for the university. As a member of the Body Image and Eating Disorder Task Force, Marchessault produced and directed Reflections, a show with body image as its central theme. She also was resident advisor of the month last September.

University Career Services recognized Erin L. Ogburn, B.A.I.S. '01, with its Career Connection Alumni Award. Currently a recruiter for Booz Allen Hamilton, she has participated in numerous Career Services activities, including critiquing students' resumes at the Super Saturday event and taking part in a New Century College Employer-Faculty Forum.

The CNHS Alumni Chapter recognized Dean Rita M. Carty with a special Honorary Alumna Award. Carty, who is retiring June 30, helped establish the college's global reputation through her work as the secretary general of the Global Network of World Health Organization Collaborating Centres for Nursing and Midwifery Development. Among her many distinctions are the Virginia Pioneer Nurse Award from the Virginia Nurses Association, the Chief Nurse Award from the U.S. Public Health Service, and the Grace M. Postlewaite Distinguished Invitational Lectureship at Vanderbilt University.

The Distinguished Nursing Alumni Award was presented to Sonia M. Bright, B.S.N. '97, a nurse manager at Sibley Memorial Hospital, where she has worked since she graduated from George Mason.

The Wayne F. Anderson Award for Distinguished Public Service was given to Catherine M. Hudgins, M.P.A. '94. Actively involved in national, state, and local politics for more than 25 years, she currently represents the Hunter Mill District on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and serves as chair of the Human Services Committee.

This year's Department of Communication Outstanding Alumni Award went to Cesar G. Soriano, B.A. Communication '94. Soriano, a reporter for USA Today since 1998, has been covering the war on terrorism from aboard aircraft carriers in the Arabian Sea and on the ground in Afghanistan.

Alumnus Robert C. Steele, president and CEO of Steele Technologies, received the Telecommunications Master of Arts Program Outstanding Alumni Award. Steele, M.A. '98, has 25 years of experience in the telecommunications industry, focusing his career on the design, implementation, and operation of large, complex, mission-critical systems.

The Industrial/Organizational Psychology Student Association (IOPSA) Distinguished Alumni Award was presented to Bob Kilcullen, Ph.D. '94. He is a research psychologist at the U.S. Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences.

Nicole E. Harris, B.A. English '85 and M.A. American History '89, received the Stephen Karbelk Alumnus of the Year Award. Harris is vice president and publisher at the National Glass Association in McLean, Va.

Richard J. Kelly, B.I.S. '96, was recognized with the Outstanding Graduate in Art History Award. Kelly serves on the boards of a number of arts organizations, including the National Museum of Women in the Arts, the Museum Trustees Association, and the Federal Reserve Board Art Gallery.

In addition, the following scholarships and awards were presented to students: Marie Gillman Nursing Scholarship to Frouzan Kabiri; Dean Engle Memorial Scholarship to Catherine Sevcenko; School of Law Alumni Chapter Scholarship to Sunjeet S. Randhawa; Malawer-Paden International Commerce and Policy Award to Hiromi Akaya Robinson; and New Century College Outstanding Internship Awards to Diana Green and Myra Ceasar.