PLYMOUTH — The Plymouth State University Alumni Association recently presented its 2018 Alumni Awards, recognizing seven alumni and two faculty members for their commitment to serving the school, their professions and communities.
"Plymouth State University is extremely fortunate to have such exceptional, dedicated and caring alumni," said Dr. Donald L. Birx, president of Plymouth State University. "Their continued service to the university helps to set us apart from other educational institutions and inspires current students to consider how they can contribute to the PSU community — both while they’re on campus and when they graduate."
The 2018 Plymouth State Alumni Awards were:
Graduating Senior Award of Excellence: Shannon Spaulding of Claremont, Class of 2018. Spaulding was honored as a member of the incoming alumni class for exhibiting outstanding campus and community leadership while enhancing alumni activities. She plans to pursue legal graduate studies, building on her internship at the New Hampshire State House, fellowship for the Peace and Social Justice Studies Council, and membership in the Model United Nations.
Recent Alumni Award of Excellence: Meghan Lang of Fort Myers, Florida, Class of 2017. Lang was recognized for her professional excellence and outstanding service to PSU, the Alumni Association, and the community. Lang now works as a health care account executive at Gartner, a leading research and advisory company. As a student, Lang launched Compass Consulting, a social media student consulting business to promote PSU, and she established scholarships to help support students involved in MAPS, Compass, and other programs.
Distinguished Alumni Service Award: Nancy Grant of Honeoye Falls, New York, Class of 1992. Grant was honored for her service to PSU and its alumni organizations. Grant has served on the board of directors of the Plymouth State Alumni Association for more than a decade, including one term as its chair. She is a founding member of the Greek Life Advisory Group, helping to reimagine Greek life as it returns to campus. Grant has worked for career development, supporting students and alumni as their mentor, and assists with annual student scholarships.
Alumni Achievement Awards: Joseph LeSerra, Class of 2013, and Dick Ewart, Class of 1973. LeSerra and Ewart were recognized for exemplifying PSU’s motto, "Ut prosim" (That I may serve), through special contributions to Plymouth State Alumni Association activities and their professions.
LeSerra is a senior detective in the financial crime unit in the Leon County (Florida) Sheriff's Office. LeSerra teaches residents about fraud prevention and is active in his community, serving as a flag football and youth baseball coach and leading fundraising efforts for the American Heart Association.
Ewart, of Mariposa, California, recently retired from a career with the National Park Service at Yosemite National Park. As a student at PSU, he decided to become a naturalist, and grew to become one of the top naturalists in the United States.
Outstanding Graduate Alumni Award: Linda Martin of Seabrook, Class of 1999. Martin earned a graduate degree in Business Administration while working full-time, then earned a second master’s degree in Occupational Safety Management, and is currently pursuing a doctorate in Safety Sciences at Keene State College. She also is a tenure-track faculty member at Keene State, teaching in the master of safety and occupational health applied sciences programs.
Faculty/Staff Award of Excellence: doctors Brad Allen and Greg Dumont were recognized for their support of alumni and student connections on campus. Both teach business and marketing courses and advise the Marketing Association of Plymouth State, working to connect current student members with alumni for guidance and mentorship. Nearly all MAPS students receive job offers before and start jobs following graduation.
Ut Prosim Award: Christopher Foley, Class of 2002. Foley was honored posthumously for his exemplary community service and contributions to society. Foley is remembered for his leadership, passion and lasting commitment to service. After several years of teaching sixth-grade reading, math, and social studies, he became assistant principal and then principal of Penacook Elementary School.