Celebrating Outstanding Volunteers

From serving as admissions representatives and internship hosts, to class correspondents, class fund chairs, and more, volunteers enhance many facets of the student and alumni experience at Lafayette. The Alumni Association recognized outstanding alumni, alumni groups, and students for their volunteerism and commitment to the College at the annual Volunteer Awards Ceremony this past fall. 

Of the many highlights during the reception, President Nicole Farmer Hurd presented James R. Fisher ’77, P’07, ’10, ’11, trustee emeritus and chair of the Marquis Society, with the Joseph E. Bell ’28 Award for his distinguished service to the College. 

“I will say, Jim, I have never seen a longer citation in my life,” said President Hurd. “So get ready because I’m going to read 10 pages about you. I find you to be compelling and loving, and full of so much greatness.” 

David Albala ’78 was honored by the Gateway Career Center for his 25 years of providing early career experiences to students. Accompanied by Jodi Antonelli ’02 and Kevin Rice ’01, two former students who are now practicing physicians, as well as Sabrina Sicilia ’22, a current extern, Albala explained why supporting students through externships is important to the students and to him personally. 

“I really love training and working with younger people. I’ve accomplished a lot in my life, but I get more satisfaction out of seeing younger people succeed,” said Albala. “Of all the things that I’ve done in my career, this is what I have enjoyed the most.” 

For Mira van Roon Brand ’92, her award was especially meaningful. Brand received the Barry McCarty Alumni Admissions Representative of the Year Award from Admissions for her outstanding dedication to introducing prospective students to Lafayette. Brand was accompanied by Barry W. McCarty, former dean of enrollment for which the award is named, as well as her son Carter Brand, a member of the Lafayette Class of 2025. 

“This award is very special to me because Barry McCarty facilitated my coming to Lafayette many years ago,” explained Brand. “I met my husband at Lafayette, and we both loved our time there. Now our oldest son attends Lafayette College, and he loves it too. Lafayette College is like family to us, and I want to tell everyone about the great school it is, especially in the Rocky Mountain region where I live now. Cur Non!”

Congratulations to the following honorees:

Alumni Association Award Winners

Kelly Cesare Coffey ’87
George Washington Kidd, Class of 1836 Award

James Fisher ’77 P’07,’10,’11
Joseph E. Bell ’28 Award

Ian Stone ’10
Clifton P. Mayfield, Class of 1909 Award 

Mark Suffredini ’93
George T. Woodring ’19 Service Award 

Renae Schneck Tesauro ’82
George T. Woodring ’19 Volunteer of the Year Award 

Daniella Colon ’10
William E. Greenip ’44 Award 

Bruce Pastorini ’75
Chapter Event Chairperson of the Year Award 

Samantha Chavin ’16
Chapter Support Person of the Year Award 

Sharon Tchon Gruet ’81
Wilson E. Hughes ’38 Correspondent Award 

Jillian Ventresca ’04
Elmer E. Huhn ’24 Correspondent Award 

Francis Julia Jr. ’72
Bernard S. Wildstein ’35 Correspondent Award 

Alix Talkow ’22
Admissions Ambassador Student Volunteer Service Award

Gateway Career Center Award Winners

Christina Seckar ’96
Lois and Neil Gagnon Award 

Rachel Fischer ’07
Externship Commitment Award

David Albala ’78
Distinguished Externship Commitment Award

Annual Fund Award Winners

Class of 1981—Sharon Tchon Gruet ’81
Joseph T. Losee ’94 Award

Lafayette College Fund Award

Class of 1979—Laurie Samet ’79 and Lisa Kassel ’79

Class of 1957—Glenn Grube ’57
Julius Naab ’19 Award 

Class of 2011—Amanda Whitbred ’11 and Christina Hunt ’11
Robert Whitmer 1885 Award

Class of 1971—Paul Dimmick ’71
Ernest G. Smith ’94 Award

Alumni Admissions Representative Award Winners

Samantha DeMarse ’20
New Alumni Admissions Representative of the Year Award

Mira van Roon Brand ’92
Barry W. McCarty Alumni Admissions Representative of the Year Award

Karen Kennedy ’08 and Rebecca McIver ’15
Alumni Admissions Representative Geographic Outreach Award 

Lisa Kassel ’79
William G. Wilson Distinguished Service Award