2022 Alumni Award Recipients

Carlos F. Barbas III ’85 Alumni Award

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated significant career achievement in, or contributions to, the medical or scientific research field.
Brad Pendley ’87

More About Brad

Brad is an affiliate professor of biomedical engineering at the University of Memphis and a primary care physician. He conducts research on biomedical sensors and their medical applications.

Brad has written 39 peer-reviewed journal articles, one book chapter and has one patent. Brad has received 17+ honors and awards related to scholarship, teaching and community service. He has served on the Board of Directors for the House of the Good Shepherd, Memphis, which operates a community resource center for women seeking to improve their lives. In addition to his Eckerd degree, Brad earned a Ph.D. from Cornell University and an M.D. from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.

Grover C. Wrenn ’64 Service Award

Awarded to an alumna/us who has rendered outstanding volunteer service to Eckerd College in any area
Rob Waters ’82

More About Rob

Rob is an accomplished academic administrator with extensive experience in higher education. Most recently, he was vice president of experiential programming and partnerships for the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges. He also previously served as dean of the School of Graduate Studies and dean of the School of Public Service at Excelsior College in Albany, N.Y.

At Eckerd, Rob majored in American Studies and economics. He went on to earn a master’s degree from the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government and a Ph.D. from Stanford University. He served as a Fulbright Scholar at Chiang Mai University in Thailand in 2010-11. Rob is a member of the Eckerd College Board of Trustees, where he chairs the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Belonging and Executive and Continuing Education Committees. He has been an advocate at Eckerd for increasing diversity and enhancing the experience of students of color and increasing Eckerd’s reach and impact in the St. Petersburg and Pinellas County communities.

Jim Crane Award

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated significant achievements as an artist, leadership in visual arts education, and contributions to the creative arts.
Susan DeMay ’77

More About Susan

Susan is an accomplished clay artist who also excels as a professor at the university level. Her ceramics, which she produces from her studio in Smithville, Tennessee, has been found in retail venues throughout the southeast. Her production lines are known for their saturated colors in glaze and her nature themed motifs: floral imagery and landscapes. She recently retired after a long career teaching at Vanderbilt University and now teaches one course at Cumberland University.

Her work has appeared in the following Lark Books: 500 Plates and Chargers; 500 Vases; Ceramics for Beginners: Surfaces, Glazes and Firing; and The Best of 500 Ceramics. She also regularly conducts workshops at arts centers throughout the southeast and has authored articles for several ceramics periodicals. In addition to her Eckerd education, she also holds master’s degrees from George Peabody College and Tennessee Technological University.

Margaret Rigg Outstanding Alumna Award

Awarded to an alumna who, as professionals, have distinguished themselves through outstanding leadership in the workplace or community.
Jennifer Sullivan ’02

More About Jennifer

Jennifer has built a career developing programs that support marginalized student populations specifically in the field of special education. She graduated from Eckerd in ’02 as a Ford Scholar with a Bachelor Degree in Human Development and Sociology minor. She earned her M.S. degree in Multicultural and Urban Education from the College of Mount Saint Vincent and has an Assistive Technology certification from California State University, Northridge. Jennifer has taught across 4 colleges and universities and was a founding faculty member of a transition program in CT in 2006. Continuing her service to individuals of all abilities, Jennifer is the co-organizer of the LEARN DIsability Summit, an event that connects over 80 CT state organizations with families of children with disabilities from birth to age 21. The event is attended by over 700 families and children each year. Jennifer volunteers with local organizations including the Miracle League of Connecticut and SafeFutures Women’s Shelter.

Jennifer is currently the founder of Fast Forward College Coaching. She has authored 22+ publications and received 13+ grants to further her work in this field. She enjoys public speaking and has given over 50 presentations on how diverse learners can prepare for college success. She has written a book and workbook as well as designed services that support students and parents as they navigate learning and disability-related systems in college. Her most recent publication is, Sharing the Transition to College Workbook.

Margaret Rigg Social Justice Award

Awarded to an alumna who has demonstrated committed service in the advancement of gender and family justice since graduation from Eckerd College
Robin Dunn Marcos ’87

More About Robin

Robin is the senior director for resettlement, asylum and integration for the International Rescue Committee. In this role, Robin oversees technical and program teams that support programming in IRC’s offices in the US and Europe. She also provides technical support to the Resettlement Support Center (RSC) Asia with offices in Thailand and Malaysia to resettle refugees as part of the US Refugee Admissions Program. Most recently, Robin worked to set up an emergency response to receive and process Afghans who were evacuated by the U.S. after the Taliban took over Kabul, as part of which she testified to Congress on the resettlement of Afghan refugees. She has also served on the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reference group to develop a three year global strategy on resettlement and complementary pathways and was the regional representative for sub Saharan Africa and director of the RSC Africa, with Church World Service.

Robin also has a history of volunteer service with many social justice organizations, including Voices for Children and the Association of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers. She previously volunteered as a warden with the U.S. Embassy, was an accredited representative with the Board of Immigration Appeals, a member of the Organization for Non-Profit Executives, and Board President of the Verrado High School Athletics Booster Association. Robin has also received professional awards including a Piper Fellowship from the Virginia Piper Charitable Trust for nonprofit leadership. Robin began her humanitarian career serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Liberia following her graduation from Eckerd with a B.A. in international relations and global affairs. She later went on to obtain her M.A. in intercultural administration from the School for International Training.

McArthur Alumni Award

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated outstanding achievement in each of the following three areas: career or profession; service to Eckerd; and service to the community and/or the Church.
Matt Kilgroe ’87

More About Matt

Matt is President/CEO of Cyndeo Wealth Partners a billion dollar+ investment firm in St. Petersburg, and previously worked for UBS Group and Merrill Lynch. He is a nationally recognized financial advisor having been named by Barron’s as a Top 1000 or Top 1200 Advisor consistently since 2009. In 2020, Forbes named him to their “Best-In-State Wealth Advisor” list. Matt has mentored and hired a number of Eckerd alumni throughout his career.

A former Eckerd Men’s Basketball player, Matt has advocated for the Eckerd Athletics programs as well as the value of athletics within a liberal arts education. He was a lead donor for the McArthur Renovations, and has supported numerous Athletics scholarships. Matt has served on the board of trustees at Eckerd College since 2012. During that time, he has chaired the Intercollegiate Athletic and Investment committees.

Matt supports a number of local community organizations in addition to his work with Eckerd, including Starting Right, Now; Life Song Church in Tampa; St. Petersburg High; Northside Christian; Lakewood High; Warehouse AAU; Teacher Appreciation event at Gibbs; Angels Against Abuse; and Young Life.

Thomas Leonard '12

Outstanding Young Alumni Award

Awarded to a graduate of the last decade who has shown great promise and accomplishment in his or her chosen profession or through community, public or humanitarian service.
Thomas Leonard ’12

More About Thomas

Thomas Leonard is the Farm Operations Manager for Gaia Herbs, a leading herbal supplement brand and Certified B Corporation.

While a student at Eckerd, Tommy founded the community garden as a class project. Leonard has welcomed Eckerd students to intern under his tutelage and has remained in touch with the students who work on the Farm and in the Garden Club. He has given back to the garden club to allow other students to find the same passion for growing that he discovered during his time as a student.

In addition to his work as a farm manager, Thomas is a cofounder of Contour Lines Corp, a non-profit based in Guatemala that works to transition rural communities to regenerative land uses. He has also worked extensively with adults with disabilities, disadvantaged youth, female inmates, and college students from around the country teaching sustainable agriculture practices.

Renee Register ’83 Outstanding Alumni Award

Awarded to an alumna/us who consistently demonstrates and inspires in others the Eckerd College Waterfront’s core values of lifetime sports, education and community service in his or her profession, community or recreational pursuits
Eric Lundin ’84

More About Eric

Eric recently retired as a Captain with the Connecticut Environmental Conservation Police after 26 years of service. A lifelong Connecticut native, he learned his primary boating and team-building skills as an EC-SAR crew member and boat captain. He has spent his career on the water in many different ways, and is a U.S. Coast Guard licensed captain, boating instructor (on-water and in-classroom), boating safety consultant, and boating accident/incident investigator. He has spoken to EC-SAR students about his experience and how it impacted his life, most recently during Winter Term 2022.

Eric graduated from Eckerd with a degree in music, organ concentration, and earned an additional bachelor’s degree from Quinnipiac University as a medical technologist, working as a hospital laboratory toxicologist. He has been a church organist/choir director in Connecticut for most of his post-Eckerd years.

Suzanne Armacost Alumni Medal for Outstanding Community Service

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated a clear commitment to serving a larger community through notable volunteerism, an outstanding act of selflessness or a pattern of service to humanitarian efforts and/or causes.
Alberto Lense ’87 and David Canter ’97

More About Alberto and David

Alberto is a sole practitioner immigration attorney with decades of experience. He has helped many international students at Eckerd by offering free advice and has worked with Olivier Debure, Eckerd’s director of International Student Services, to give presentations to international students. He is in his tenth season as the head boys’ and girls’ varsity tennis coach for Osceola Fundamental High School, and has been recognized by the Pinellas County Athletic Conference (PCAC) as the Girls’ Tennis Coach of the Year and the Boys’ Tennis Coach of the Year four times.

Alberto serves on the Board of Directors of Evara Health (formerly known as the Community Health Centers of Pinellas), is the Secretary of the Executive Board, and co-chairs the Quality Improvement Committee with the Chief Medical Officer. Alberto also served on the Board of the Suncoast Tennis Foundation, was a tennis instructor with the First Serve program, and has been Captain of USTA League teams for youth and adult teams.

In addition to his bachelor’s degree from Eckerd, Alberto holds a J.D. from the University of Florida.

David Canter ’97 is a financial services risk executive and currently is a director with Wells Fargo. David is a tireless human rights activist, advocate and philanthropic leader.

For 20+ years David has been a steward of the LGBTQIA+ civil rights movement, supporting and engaging with a broad range of domestic and global organizations. David’s notable leadership roles include serving as the Board Chair and Member at large on behalf of SAGE, the premier advocacy and services organization supporting LGBTIQ elders globally. David also served as a founding member of the US Board of UHAI EASHRI, a fund providing grants for LGBTIQ communities across Africa. Additionally, David currently serves on the National Advisory Council of the College. David also continuously supports our Eckerd student community, having established the David W. Canter ’97 Annual Scholarship, benefiting LGBTQ students, one of the first of its kind at the College.

David earned his BA degree in American studies & political science, with High Honors, from Eckerd and also holds a J.D. from the Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University. David was also a Squadron Media Law Fellow, at Wolfson College, Oxford University.

William H. Kadel Alumni Medal for Outstanding Career Achievement

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated a clear commitment to excellence in her or his career as evidenced by public recognition, achievement or leadership that positively reflects the College’s vision.
LaRuby May ’97

More About LaRuby

LaRuby May is a lawyer, entrepreneur, and strategist who has made it her life’s work to be a vessel of service for underserved communities. Under her law firm, May Lightfoot, PLLC, LaRuby has a wide range of experience representing clients in matters from workers compensation to complex litigation. Her focus is on identifying and supporting plaintiffs from a grass roots level, specifically black and brown communities that are often disproportionately impacted and excluded from mass tort litigation.

LaRuby has been instrumental in arguing before the D.C. Council on a number of bills having a broad impact on not only the D.C. area but society as a whole. Prior to practicing law, LaRuby served a term as the councilmember representing Ward 8 in The District of Columbia. Additionally, she has served the community working to improve the quality of life for underserved District residents as the chairman of the DC Housing Authority Board of Commissioners; chairman of the United Medical Center Board of Commissioners, the only public hospital in DC; and committee co-chair of the ReOpen DC Advisory Group amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

LaRuby graduated from Eckerd with a bachelor’s degree in human development. She went on to earn a master’s degree from the George Washington University Graduate School of Education and Human Development. LaRuby has a master’s certificate in project management from Villanova University and is a proud graduate of the University of The District of Columbia David Clarke School of Law.

Previous Recipients

The Carlos F. Barbas III ’85 Alumni Award

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated significant career achievement in, or contributions to, the medical or scientific research field. Carlos Barbas sadly lost his battle to cancer on June 24, 2014. His research had focused on developing new therapeutic approaches to treating cancer and HIV and making significant contributions to synthetic biology and synthetic chemistry. This award commemorates the life and accomplishments of Carlos F. Barbas III ’85, Ph.D., and his fellow alumni.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | Dan Sutherlin ’91
  • 2020 | David Conover ’75
  • 2019 | Marion White ’74
  • 2018Jane Petro ’68
  • 2017Peter Meinke ’82 
  • 2016 | Gary Dunbar ’71, ’75
  • 2015 | Sue Slaugenhaupt ’85

The Grover C. Wrenn ’64 Service Award

Awarded to an alumna/us who has rendered outstanding volunteer service to Eckerd College in any area.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | Cathy McCoy ’71 (P ’00)
  • 2020 | AnnLouise Bleecker ’15
  • 2019 | Thomas Moore ’99
  • 2018Jack ’68 and Trisha ’68 Senterfitt
  • 2017Jesse ’91 and Mila ’90 Turtle
  • 2016 | Greg Mino ’93
  • 2015 | Robin Suarez ’85
  • 2014 | Susan Kroh McDermott ’89
  • 2013 | Matthew Staman ’92
  • 2012 | Dan Mageras ’96
  • 2010 | Lindsay Seward ’90
  • 2009 | Ian Johnson ’89
  • 2008 | Sandy Ripberger ’68, Charlie Stripling ’68
  • 2007 | Andy Haines ’86

Jim Crane Alumni Award

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated significant achievements as an artist, leadership in visual arts education, and contributions to the creative arts.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | frje Echeverria ’66
  • 2020 | Martha Ensign Johnson ’75
  • 2019 | Mary Law ’69
  • 2018Bede Clarke ’83
  • 2017Arthur Skinner ’72 

Margaret Rigg Outstanding Alumna Award

Awarded to an alumna who, as professionals, have distinguished themselves through outstanding leadership in the workplace or community. In discerning this award, we are hoping to recognize our alumnae who are working to make the world a better place through social justice work.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | Sophia Diaz-Fonseca ’81
  • 2020 | Mirna Ramos-Diaz ’80
  • 2019 | Janice Love ’75

Margaret Rigg Social Justice Award

Awarded to an alumna who has demonstrated committed service in the advancement of gender and family justice since graduation from Eckerd College.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | Lorie Clark ’81
  • 2020 | Janice Love ’75
  • 2019 | Mirna Ramos-Diaz ’80

The McArthur Alumni Award

This award was established by the Board of Trustees to honor the memory of Charles McArthur, an Eckerd trustee from 1967 until his death in June 1973 and chairman of the board from 1971 to 1973. He made possible the McArthur Gymnasium.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | Thom Shuman ’68
  • 2020 | Richard G. Miller ’64
  • 2019 | Sterling Watson ’69
  • 2018 Peter J. Genz ’73
  • 2017 George Atkinson ’67 
  • 2016 | Terry Suarez ’66
  • 2015 | Bob Francis ’80
  • 2014 | Susan McEwan Vastine ’64
  • 2013 | R. Ernest Mahaffey ’68
  • 2012 | Albert and Birgit Robbert ’66,’69
  • 2010 | G. Timothy Womack ’85
  • 2009 | Olester Benson ’74
  • 2008 | Mark White ’80
  • 2007 | Marion Marshall White ’74
  • 2006 | Ann Rittenberg ’79
  • 2005 | Claire S. Francis ’65
  • 2001 | Janet Darden Cragan ’77
  • 2000 | Albert Howard Carter III ’64, Rowland A. Sherrill ’66
  • 1999 | George A. Raftelis ’69
  • 1998 | Gary Sperduto ’74
  • 1997 | John T. DeBevoise ’78
  • 1996 | Trisha M. Senterfitt ’68, Jack H. Senterfitt ’68
  • 1995 | Jamie L. Serino ’80
  • 1994 | Kenneth Alan Jacobsen ’73
  • 1993 | Robert Lee Dietz ’79
  • 1992 | Chris Pedro Trakas ’78
  • 1991 | Grover C. Wrenn, Jr. ’64
  • 1990 | William Rhodes Ripberger ’65
  • 1989 | Mary Jane (Stearns) Schenck ’66
  • 1988 | D. Luke Kim ’64, Thomas R. Wayman ’72, John B. Phelps III ’65
  • 1987 | Scott M. Brownell ’71, Walter W. Enloe ’71
  • 1986 | Meredith Black McGuire ’64, Ronald H. Francis ’65
  • 1985 | David E. Eachus ’67, Henry Travers ’68
  • 1984 | Jeanne Johannessen Smoot ’64, Charles M. Stripling III ’68
  • 1983 | Raymond L. Schmidt ’64
  • 1982 | Kenneth Prest, Jr. ’70, Colleen Shannon ’65
  • 1981 | Harry K. Singletary, Jr. ’68, Bluford H. Putnam III ’72
  • 1980 | Jane Arbuckle Petro ’68, James Mitchell Reed ’69
  • 1979 | Harry Thomas Price II ’65, Arthur J. Ranson III ’65
  • 1978 | H. Thompson Houchins, Jr. ’64, Susan E. Russ ’77, Charles C. Thornton, Jr. ’72
  • 1977 | Susan Solteau Kilham ’65, John M. McGuire ’67, Roger J. Porter ’64
  • 1976 | Sherman E. Armstrong ’69, William F. Coleman ’66
  • 1975 | David B. Cozad ’68, Frederick A. Russ ’66

Outstanding Young Alumni Award

Awarded to a graduate of the last decade who has shown great promise and accomplishment in his or her chosen profession or through community, public or humanitarian service.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | Brandon Cooke ’11
  • 2020 | Ben Hamburger ’10
  • 2019Jennifer Sato ’09
  • 2018Brandon O’Shea ’08
  • 2017Ben Flagg ’12 
  • 2016 | Kaiya Waddell ’06
  • 2015 | Meghan Meehan-Draper ’10, Caitlin Meehan-Draper ’10
  • 2014 | Blake Johnson ’09
  • 2013 | Diana Huestis ’03
  • 2012 | Sarah Sieloff ’06
  • 2010 | Suleyman Bilgutay ’01
  • 2009 | Jaime Wilke Corvin ’99
  • 2008 | Taryn Fielder ’99
  • 2007 | Angela Guyadeen ’03

The Suzanne Armacost Alumni Medal for Outstanding Community Service

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated a clear commitment to serving a larger community through notable volunteerism, an outstanding act of selflessness or a pattern of service to humanitarian efforts and/or causes. Suzanne Armacost passed away on February 8, 1991, leaving behind a legacy of love and dedication to all who knew her. She was married to former Eckerd president Peter Armacost and was the mother of four. Her presence and strength were felt on campus and in the community. This award is dedicated to her legacy.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | Craig Altemose ’06
  • 2020 | Timothy Holliday ’95
  • 2019 | Watson Haynes ’84
  • 2018Jonathan ’91 and Pam ’93 Baker
  • 2017Adele Solazzo ’82 
  • 2016 | Cheryl Burke ’86
  • 2015 | Beth Miller ’65
  • 2014 | William Cooley ’68, Jean Cooley ’68
  • 2013 | Mo Eppley ’98
  • 2012 | Cindy Weatherby ’84
  • 2010 | Carolyn Eliades ’88
  • 2009 | Paul Cheney ’69
  • 2008 | Sue Cornman ’71
  • 2007 | Rebecca Blitch ’02
  • 2006 | William Nye ’96
  • 2005 | John M. Pollock ’90
  • 2004 | Robert R. Johnson ’71, John Steakley, Jr. ’83
  • 2003 | Debra Ann Albright ’86, Louis Raymond Hidu ’74
  • 2001 | Nay Malloy Howell ’75, William Robb Hough, Jr. ’76
  • 2000 | Carolyn Hall Horton ’64
  • 1999 | Brenda Bevans Remmes ’69
  • 1998 | Noreen H. Hodges ’87, Christie Cason Wheeler ’89
  • 1997 | Mary Charlotte McCall ’65
  • 1996 | David Butts ’78, John Stephen Rhodes ’69
  • 1995 | Diane L. Ferris ’86, Martha Jane Eblen ’76
  • 1994 | Elithia V. Stanfield ’74, James D. O’Donnell ’92
  • 1993 | Jan Love ’75
  • 1992 | Terry Cunningham ’88

The William H. Kadel Alumni Medal for Outstanding Career Achievement

Awarded to an alumna/us who has demonstrated a clear commitment to excellence in her or his career as evidenced by public recognition, achievement or leadership that positively reflects the College’s vision. In 1958, William H. Kadel helped found Florida Presbyterian College and then served as president from 1958 to 1968. This was his proudest career achievement until his death on October 14, 1991. Dr. Kadel’s mission was to prepare outstanding leaders for every aspect of life. This award is dedicated to his vision.

Previous Award Winners

  • 2021 | John Saunders ’71
  • 2020 | Virginia J. Scott ’85
  • 2019 | Harvey Jeffries ’64
  • 2018Jeff Moreno ’88
  • 2017Ward Shelley ’72 
  • 2016 | Jonathan Keeton ’80
  • 2015 | David Conover ’75
  • 2014 | Karin Musier-Forsyth ’84
  • 2013 | D. Ashley Hill ’86
  • 2012 | Doug Greenfield ’71
  • 2010 | Jim Sweeny ’65, John Sweeny ’65
  • 2009 | Bill “Tex” Curtis ’71
  • 2008 | Harry Johns ’90
  • 2007 | Michael Bluett ’76
  • 2006 | William Evers ’76
  • 2005 | Susan Slaugenhaupt Nash ’85
  • 2004 | Carol Ann Baily ’69, Eva Dale Collins ’79
  • 2003 | Gabriele Giovanni Mazza ’68
  • 2001 | Linda L. Musante ’76
  • 2000 | Ernest Suarez ’80
  • 1999 | Paul R. Cheney ’69, Timothy Lightfield ’67, Stephen Updegraff ’74
  • 1998 | Robert W. Barnes ’72, Antonia E. Brown ’78, Gary L. Dunbar ’71
  • 1997 | Louis G. Tassinary ’76, Nathaniel H. Bronner, Jr. ’77
  • 1996 | Nancy G. Herbert ’74, Sandra Mortham ’89
  • 1995 | John Henry Hankinson, Jr. ’70
  • 1994 | E. Carrington Boggan ’65
  • 1993 | Paul E. Hoffman ’64, Priscilla Anne Rogers ’71
  • 1992 | Melanie S. Taylor ’74