Alumni

Alumni Awards

Each year, the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications and its Alumni Society Board honor alumni in a variety of categories.

The Outstanding Alumni Award

Presented to a graduate of the Bellisario College of Communications who has demonstrated excellence in the field of communications, contributed significantly to their profession and gained an exemplary reputation among colleagues and students within their community.

Past Winners

  • 2016: Nina Jack ('92 Film), television producer
  • 2015: Jayne Miller ('76 Journ), investigative journalist, WBAL-TV 
    VIDEO: Acceptance Speech
  • 2014: Joanne Calabria ('74 Journ), vice president of public affairs for CBS Television Group 
  • 2013: Kathleen Pavelko ('79g Journ), president/CEO WITF Public Media
  • 2012: Lara Spencer ('91 Journ), lifestyle anchor "Good Morning America"
  • 2011: Paula Froke ('82 Journ), assistant managing editor, The Associated Press
  • 2010: Joseph Krushinsky ('85 Telecom/Journ), vice president, Maryland Public Television
  • 2009: Tanya Biank ('93 Journ), author, "Army Wives," and journalist
  • 2008: Mark Livolsi ('84 Film), film editor, iTalent ("Wedding Crashers," "The Devil Wore Prada")
  • 2007: Jeff Baum ('85, Journ), vice president, Global Communications, EDS
  • 2006: Mary Meder ('83, Adv), president, Harmelin Media
  • 2005: David Lipson ('78 Adv), president, Metrocorp Holdings (Philadelphia Magazine)

The Achievement Award

Presented to a Bellisario College graduate or friend of the College whose significant contributions to the College and/or University, in terms of time and talent, have brought distinction to themselves, the College and University.

Past Winners

  • 2016: Lou Prato ('58 Journ), TV news director, Penn State sports historian
  • 2015: Mimi Coppersmith ('53 Journ), founder Town&Gown magazine, University donor and volunteer
    VIDEO: Acceptance Speech
  • 2014: Bill Jaffe ('60 Journ), University donor and volunteer
  • 2013: Chris Wheeler ('67 Brdcast), broadcaster, Philadelphia Phillies
  • 2012: Alex Ward ('66 Journ), The New York Times 
  • 2011: Ben Bronstein ('61 Journ), public relations, Milton S. Hershey Medical Center (retired)
  • 2010: Thomas Loebig ('80 Journ), director of digital media content and operations, AccuWeather
  • 2009: Robert McKinnon ('91 Adv), founder/president, Galewill social change agency
  • 2008: Chris Wightman ('84 Journ), managing director, communications, U.S. Golf Association
  • 2007: Marv Krasnansky ('72 Journ), retired VP of corporate communications at McKesson
  • 2006: Robert O'Leary ('71, Adv), former senior vice president of public relations for Sears Roebuck & Co.;
  • 2005: Kerrie Carfagno ('94 Brcab), college instructor

The Emerging Professional Award

Presented annually to recent alumni (10 years or less since graduation) for professional achievements and/or distinguished community service.

Past Winners

  • 2016: Tyler Walk ('06 Film), award-winning film editor
  • 2015: Arianna Davis ('09 Journ), staff editor, US Weekly
    VIDEO: Acceptance Speech
  • 2014: Blake Berson ('05 Journ), producer, CBS Sports
  • 2013: Michael Chobot ('09 Film-Video), sound mixer, DuArt Film
  • 2012: Sara Ganim ('08 Journ), reporter, CNN
  • 2011: Sheil Kapadia ('05 Journ), sports editor, Philly.com
  • 2010: Reenie Dyball ('02 Journ), writer, People.com
  • 2009: Evan Harris ('04 Telecom), marketing/promotions, CBS College Sports
  • 2008: Erin Hazard ('99 Adv/PR), senior vice president, consumer markets, Fleishman-Hillard
  • 2007: David Schaefer ('99 Adv/PR), manager of publicity for Discovery Channel
  • 2006: Brad Young ('96 Journ), associate publisher, marketing, Fortune Magazine
  • 2005: Ryan Hockensmith ('01 Journ), editor, ESPN The Magazine

Douglas A. Anderson Communications Contributor

A newly created award presented by the Alumni Society Board in 2012 to acknowledge the contributions and/or achievements of an individual(s) in the field of communications as they relate to the Bellisario College, Penn State and/or the Commonwealth. The recipient may not be a graduate of the Bellisario College (as there are other awards to recognize alumni achievement). The recipient could, however, still be a Penn State graduate.

Past Winners

  • 2016: Barbara Palmer, honorary alumnus, community leader and philanthropist
  • 2015: Jim Gardner, news anchor, WPVI-TV
    VIDEO: Acceptance Speech
  • 2014: Fran Fisher, the "voice of Penn State football," supporter, volunteer
  • 2013: Gene Foreman, visiting professor, journalism editor/executive, College of Communications
  • 2012: Doug Anderson, Dean of the College of Communications

Excellence in Teaching Award

The purpose of this award is to recognize those Bellisario College faculty who have demonstrated excellence in teaching, contributed significantly to the growth of students' learning, and gained an exemplary reputation among colleagues, students, and alumni. Nominees will be judged on their ability to inspire students and improve the classroom environment, their breadth and depth of knowledge of their subject, and their dedication outside the classroom. Nominations may be submitted by undergraduate students, graduate students, and student organizations. 

Past Winners

  • 2016: Kevin Hagopian
  • 2015: John Affleck
    VIDEO: Acceptance Speech
  • 2014: Michel Haigh
  • 2013: Steve Kraycik
  • 2012: Maria Baukus
  • 2011: Curt Chandler
  • 2010: Michael Elvasky
  • 2009: Ken Yednock
  • 2008: Ann Kuskowski
  • 2007: Richard Sherman
  • 2006: Martin Halstuk
  • 2005: Rod Bingaman

Click here to access nomination form

For all awards

Eligibility

Undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate degree alumni of the Bellisario College. Present Alumni Society Board members are ineligible.

Nominations

Departmental faculty, Alumni Society board members, or any alumnus or friend of the College may submit nominations for these awards.

Awards Nomination Form