2021 Alma College Alumni Awards


Megan Neeley 

October 6, 2021 

Each year, the Alma college and alumni community recognize outstanding alumni with the Alma College Alumni Awards presented during Homecoming weekend. These five awards include the Distinguished Alumni Award, the Herbert Award, the Smith Award, the Young Alumni Award, and the honor of Grand Marshal.  

The Distinguished Alumni Award is the highest honor to be presented to Alma College alumni. This award is given to those who have brought distinction and prestige to Alma College through their profession. The 2021 Distinguished Alumni Award was received by Shelley Bausch and Stephan Meyer.   

Bausch graduated in 1988 with a Bachler of Science degree in biology and business administration. She is now the Senior Vice President at Axalta Coating Systems. Bausch highly values the liberal arts education she received at Alma and has used it to shape her professional career. 

Also receiving the Distinguished Alumni Award was Stephan Meyer who graduated in 1980 with a Bachler of Science degree in biology. Meyer is highly involved in the health care industry as a managing partner of River Marsh Capital LLC and an operating partner at Beecken Petty O’Keefe and Company. He served on the Alma College Board of Trustees in the past. Meyers and his wife were both involved in various charitable activities on campus.  

The Herbert Award, after George Herbert, whose love for Alma is an inspiration to alumni, represents the loyalty and service of the nominee to the Alumni Association. This award was presented to Denette Taylor, class of 1984, who double-majored in mathematics and physics. She is now a neurologist specializing in Parkinson’s Disease at the Hauenstein Neuroscience Center. Taylor gives back to Alma College by generously coordinating real-world opportunities for current Alma College students in the medical field.  

The Smith Award recognizes alumni known for aiding student recruitment, providing students with important career steps or those that serve on an Alma College board or council. Paul Burns received the Smith Award this year. Burns served on the Alma College Parent and Family Board from 2016-2019 and volunteered at many admissions visit days and commencement ceremonies. He graduated with a double major in biology and chemistry in 1981. Burns is now a senior physician manager for Dow Chemical Company.   

The Young Alumni Award is presented to an alum of the past five to 15 years who shows the values of Alma College at a high professional level or in volunteer service. David Braidwood, class of 2011, is the receiver of this award as he is now a relationship manager for high growth talent solutions at LinkedIn and attributes Alma College as the reason he has been able to explore many opportunities in his professional pursuits.  

This year, Grand Marshal, representing the essence of Alma College, was Ed Lorenz. Lorenz is a highly accomplished historian. He was a Reid-Knox Professor of History and Political Science here at Alma from 1989 to 2018. Lorenz is also a three-time recipient of the Barlow Award for Faculty Excellence and has been voted Outstanding Faculty in the Social Sciences on numerous occasions.   

“Celebrating the extraordinary accomplishments of our Alma College alumni is one of the highlights of Homecoming,” said Sherie Veramay of the Advancement Office. “Time and time again, our graduates prove that an Alma education does indeed produce citizens who live out Alma’s mission: to prepare graduates who think critically, serve generously, lead purposefully and live responsibly.”  

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