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The exterior of Governors State University at night

Save the Date

Governors State University invites you to celebrate the heights and achievements you and your fellow alums have attained! Reach out to your favorite classmates, study groups and come together at the Distinguished Alumni Reception.

This event is in conjunction with the Office of the Chief Diversity Officer.

Date: November 20, 2021
Reception: 5 – 7 p.m.
Concert: 7:30 p.m.
Location: Hall of Governors

Keynote Speakers

Salvador Mendoza

Salvador Mendoza
MS Educational Administration ’97

NBCUniversal Media, Inc.
Vice President Diversity Equity and Inclusion

Amazon logo, Inc.

Distinguished Alumni Awards


Five (5) Alumni Awards total, one (1) for each college and one(1) Rising Star.

Distinguished Alumni Award (Graduated 1972 – 2015)

A Distinguished Alumni is one who has contributed to their field of study or has achieved a record of major distinction in his/her career.


Committee Members:  Dr. Walter Henne, Dan Nearing, Dr. Mary Carrington, Dr. Rashidah Muhammad, Stacy Amedeo

47 nominations

Finalists in Alphabetical Order:

Beth Boggs, Sheila Chalmers-Currin, Debbie Halvorson, Janet Muchnik


Committee Members:  Dr. Joe Day, Dr. Cathy Tymkow, Dr. David Diers, Dr. Catherine Balthazar, Dr. Nicole Koonce

23 nominations

Finalists in Alphabetical Order:

Vernard Alsberry, Dr. Adeyemi Fatoki, Dr. Mary Maryland; Alicia Tate-Nadeua


Committee Members:  Dr. Anthony Andrews, Dr. TJ Wang, Dr. Steve Wagner, Dr. John Simon

16 nominations

Finalists in Alphabetical Order:

Dana Agusto, CPA, CGMF, Dr. Curtis Crawford,  Victor Onafuye-Jonathan, Dr. Jintong Tang


Committee Members:  Dr. Amy Vujaklija, Dr. Daniel Koonce, Dr. Shannon Dermer, Dr Glenna Howell

10 nominations

Finalists in Alphabetical Order:

Dr. Nguyen-Trung Hieu, Dr. Don Parker, Dr. Pat Robey

Rising Star Alumni Award (Graduated 2016 – 2021)

The Rising Star Alumni award recognizes a graduate from within the last five years only, for superior accomplishments.

Rising Star Committee Members:

Carl Hampton, Dr. Rosemary Johnsen, Sharon Morrissey, Dr. David Rhea, Konya Sledge

39 nominations

Finalists in Alphabetical Order:

Tim Cappos, Dr. Tiffany Gethers, Dr. Jamelia Hand, Megan Rodgers 


Distinguished Emeritus Faculty/Retiree Award 

The Distinguished Emeritus Faculty/Retiree Award recognizes one GSU emeritus/retiree who continues their extraordinary commitment to their community and Governors State University demonstrated through service and distinction.

Emeriti/Retiree Committee Members:

Dr. Stuart Fagan, Penny Perdue, Joan Johns-Maloney, Judy Ferneau

7 nominations

Finalists in Alphabetical Order:

Dr. Larry McClellan, Dr. Mel Muchnik, Christine Cochrane, Dr. Dianna Galante

If you have any questions, please contact Laura Mannion, Director Institutional Advancement at

Orbert Davis' Chicago Jazz Philharmonic Forward Momentum

Orbert Davis

Following the reception, we will be hosting a concert performed by Orbert Davis and members of the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic! For more information regarding the concert, please visit the Center for Performing Arts dedicated event page.

For the health and protection of yourself and the patron next to you, Center for Performing Arts patrons must wear a mask and provide proof of Covid-19 vaccination or a negative test result (within the last 72 hours).

Learn More