2018 Awards Gala

Alumni Awards

Each year, UHAA honors alumni who embody the true spirit of UH and work to create impact through their unique contributions. These awards provide an opportunity to showcase diverse talents and say thank you for an enduring commitment and dedication to the University. The awards are presented at the annual Alumni Award Gala where members of the Cougar community come together to pay tribute.

Distinguished Alumni Award

The purpose of the Distinguished Alumni Award is to recognize and honor alumni who have significant contributions to society and whose accomplishments and careers have brought credit to the University of Houston.

Jim Culpepper (’67)

Jim L. Culpepper is founder of Jim L. Culpepper & Associates, P.C. – a law firm that handles business litigation and probate matters. He is Board Certified in Civil Trial Law, Personal Injury Law, and Commercial Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is fluent in Spanish and able to provide all phases of legal services and other communications to the firm’s Spanish-speaking clients.

Elizabeth Killinger (’91)

Elizabeth Killinger graduated from the University of Houston in 1991 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration-management information systems from the C.T. Bauer College of Business. She has nearly 30 years of domestic and international experience in the energy and services industries and currently serves NRG as EVP and president of Reliant.

Elizabeth spent the first decade of her career in oilfield services, software development and management consulting. She spent the second decade of her career at Reliant and NRG running all areas of customer operations for residential, small commercial and large commercial customers in competitive electricity markets in Texas and the U.S. Northeast. Now in the third decade of her career, Elizabeth leads Reliant and NRG’s $6 billion retail mass market customer division.

Deeply committed to making a difference for future generations, Elizabeth serves many impactful organizations. This includes the UH Energy Advisory Board and Bauer College of Business Board of Directors.

Alex López Negrete (FS ’81)

Since co-founding Lopez Negrete Communications, Inc., in 1985, Alex’s passion and vision have positioned the company to become one of the country’s most influential, independent, Hispanic owned and operated Omnicultural® marketing agencies. He started the Houston-based agency with his wife and partner, Cathy, with the conviction that thoughtful, relevant, fully integrated, in-language and in-culture communications is the best way to reach the exceedingly important Hispanic market.

Howard S. Lorch (’67, M.Ed. ’68)

Howard “Howie” Lorch is a Managing Director-Investments and Financial Advisor with The Lorch Group of Wells Fargo Advisors. Lorch offers a wide range of experience from Wealth Management, Estate Planning Strategies and Insurance, as well as access to lending products and services through Wells Fargo Advisors. Howard offers a broad array of company resources, including research analysts and economic and market experts. Lorch has helped clients make informed investment decisions during his more than 50 years in the financial industry. He also played a key role in the integration of college basketball over 50 years ago as the first roommate for NCAA and NBA legend, Elvin Hayes (’85) at UH.

Robert D. Planck (’71)

Robert Planck is the president of Interconnect Enterprises, a consulting firm specializing in the hospitality and foodservice manufacturing industries. Planck also serves as the associate for Pentallect, a strategic consulting firm serving the leading trading partners in the food industry. Planck is active in several organizations – serving as Chairman of the Cougar Lunch Bunch; as a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council for the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management at UH; as a member of the Board of Advisors for the TKE Fraternity at UH; and as a member of the Board of Directors for the Krewe of Gambrinus, a leading Galveston based Mardi Gras Krewe.

Distinguished Service Award

The purpose of the Distinguished Service Award is to recognize the exceptional loyalty and leadership of alumni volunteers and their efforts to further the goals and support the programs of UHAA.

Fermeen Fazal (’96, ’97, J.D. ’00)

Fermeen Fazal is Vice President, Chief Counsel, and Director of Compliance at Universal Pegasus International (UPI), a pipeline engineering, procurement, and construction services company. She has responsibility and oversight for UPI’s legal, compliance, risk management, facilities, quality, and contracts functions.  Fermeen graduated magna cum laude from the University of Houston Law Center in 2000.  While in law school, she was the Chief Justice of the student-run Honor Court, and the Publishing Editor for the Houston Law Review.

Sharmagne Taylor (’86)

Sharmagne Taylor, CMP, is president and CEO of On-Site Partners, Inc. Established in 1998, On-Site Partners, Inc., is a full-service meeting consulting firm that provides technology solutions for attendees and housing and event-logistics management for large meetings and events hosted by professional and trade associations, corporations and community organizations. Prior to starting her own firm, Taylor worked for 15 years in hotel operations, sales and convention services, primarily with the Hyatt and Hilton.

Billie Schneider Outstanding Volunteer Award

The purpose of the Billie Schneider Outstanding Volunteer Award is to recognize alumni who exemplify a spirit of volunteerism to advance the mission of UHAA and its programs. The recipient for this award is chosen by UHAA.

Edward Carrizales (’13)

Edward Carrizales works as Systems Data Analyst for Amegy Bank. He was awarded the 2019 ETO Community Service award from Zions/Amegy Bank. Edward is a Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo Scholar and was the recipient of the 2012 ALPFA Latino of the Year award during his time at the University of Houston. He currently serves as the President of the UH Hispanic Alumni Association and graduated from the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Emerging Leaders Institute in 2017. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Alumni Task Force.

Rising Star Award

The purpose of the Rising Star Award is to recognize and honor motivated young alumni who have excelled beyond the norm and who exhibit leadership, involvement, and hold key volunteer positions on campus or within UHAA.

Justin Yu (’07)

Native Houstonian and Chef Justin Yu has crisscrossed the globe honing his culinary skills. Yu earned his bachelors in Hotel and Restaurant Management at the University of Houston and culinary arts degree from New York’s Culinary Institute of America. In Houston, Chef Yu worked at *17 and The Grove before heading west to man the stoves at the vegetable-focused, Michelin-rated Ubuntu in Napa Valley. In 2010, he ventured back to his hometown for the Just8 Project–a wildly-popular one-month pop-up restaurant–before traveling abroad to work. In Europe, he served as a stagier at In de Wulf in Belgium and AOC and Geranium in Denmark. Chef Yu opened Oxheart in March 2012, listed by Bon Appetit as one of America’s top 10 Best New Restaurants of 2012.  When Oxheart closed in 2017, Yu opened Theodore Rex, the Houston spot already being recognized as one of the Best New Restaurants in America.

Chair’s Award

The purpose of the Chair’s Award is to recognize and honor non-alumni who have consistently and voluntarily given extraordinary support to the University of Houston. Do you know someone who fits this description?

Dr. William Munson

Dr. Munson started his 34-year connection with the University of Houston in 1985 when he was hired as the Director of Campus Activities. In 1988, he was promoted to the Dean of Students position and subsequently to the positions of Assistant Vice President for Student Development and Dean of Students in 1992, Associate Vice President for Student Development and Dean of Students in 2001, and Associate Vice Chancellor/Associate Vice President for Student Development and Dean of Students in 2007. Since 2012, Dr. Munson has served as the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students.

Past Honorees

James L. Sibley (FS ’49) 1949 Ernest Mayeux (FS ’52) 1951 Jack Valenti (A.S. ’42, B.S. ’46, H ’02) 1952
Sherwood Crane 1953 Johnny Goyen (’47) 1954 William W. Sherrill (FS ’50) 1955
Charles A. Saunders (’45) 1956 Joel H. Berry, Jr. (’42) 1957 Harry H. Montgomery, Jr. (’40) 1958
Thomas Menefee (FS ’42) 1959 John J. Toomey (’50, J.D. ’69) 1960 Ralph Poling (’56) 1961
Walter M. Rainey, Jr. (’49) 1962 Roger W. Jeffery, Sr. (FS ’38) 1963 Judge Roy Hofheinz 1967
Dr. John McGivney (’47) 1968 Congressman Bob Casey 1969 Dan Rather (FS ’57) 1969
Dr. Arleigh Templeton (M.Ed ’50, Ph.D. ’60) 1969 LeRoy Melcher, Sr. (’33) 1970 Hon. Welcome Wilson, Sr. (’49) 1970
Harry H. Hedges, Jr. (’40) 1971 Elsa Rosborough (’46, M.L. ’63) 1971 Larry Blyden (’47) 1972
Judge Bill Elliott ( J.D. ’51) 1972 Reverend Rene H. Gracida (’50) 1972 Guy V. Lewis (’47) 1973
Judge Wendell A. Odom ( J.D. ’51) 1973 Judge Criss Cole ( J.D. ’54) 1974 Howard W. Pollock ( J.D. ’69) 1975
John B. Van Ness (’51, ’56) 1975 Byron G. “Pappy” Bond (’50) 1976 Rabbi Hyman Judah Schachtel (Ed.D. ’48) 1977
Roy Wiese (’54) 1978 Dave Williams 1978 Robert W. Baldwin (’47, ’49) 1979
Archie Bennett, Jr. (’62) 1979 Elvin Hayes (’85) 1980 Hon. Leonard Rauch (FS ’47, H ’07) 1980
Richard “Racehorse” Haynes ( J.D. ’56) 1981 Kenneth Reese (’54) 1981 Hon. Charles B. Marino (’50) 1982
Kathryn J. Whitmire (’68,M.S. ’70) 1982 Peter H. Roussel (’65) 1983 Judge Shearn Smith (’51, J.D. ’69) 1983
Judge Ruby Kless Sondock (’59, ’61) 1983 E. Virginia Barnett (M.B.A. ’56) 1984 Hon. John E. Kolb ( J.D. ’55) 1984
Hon. Charles E. McMahen (’62, H ’02) 1984 Hon. Dr. Kenneth L. Lay (Ph.D. ’70) 1985 Vassar Miller (’47, M.A. ’50) 1985
Mickey L. Herskowitz (’56) 1986 Kenneth L. Schnitzer 1986 James C. Shindler (’57) 1986
Ned Battista (’62, M.M. ’64) 1987 Roy H. Cullen, Jr. (’57) 1987 Jack M. Rains ( J.D. ’67) 1987
Duane B. Adams (’54) 1988 Joseph Rodney Canion (’66, M.S. ’67) 1988 Larry W. Gatlin (’70) 1988
Sam P. Douglass (’54) 1989 Dr. Louis Green (’47) 1989 Wilhelmina Cullen Robertson (’44) 1989
Victor Costa (’58) 1990 Hon. C.F. Kendall, II (’60, J.D. ’69) 1990 Dr. Robert W. Lawless (’64) 1990
Congressman Tom DeLay (’69) 1991 Hon. John J. Moores (’70, J.D. ’75, H ’95) 1991 Leonard Rosenberg ( J.D. ’53) 1991
Katherine Mize (’61, M.A. ’65) 1992 Jim Nantz (’81) 1992 Don D. Sykora (’57) 1992
Carl Lewis (FS ’82) 1993 Hon. John O’Quinn (’65, ’67, J.D. ’69) 1993 Dr. Shirley Rose (’60, M.Ed. ’69, Ph.D. ’73) 1993
Dr. Bernard Harris (’78) 1994 Tom Jarriel (’56) 1994 Regina Rogers (’70) 1994
Valerie King Freeman (’70, M.Ed. ’72) 1995 Congressman Gene Green (’71) 1995 Hakeem Olajuwon (FS ’84) 1995
Doug Drabek (FS ’83) 1996 Elizabeth D. Rockwell (FS ’42, H ’99) 1996 Jane Cizik (’83) 1997
Hon. Gene McDavid (’65) 1997 Hon. Morrie Abramson (’56) 1998 Emyré Robinson (’70) 1998
Hon. Mary E. Bacon ( J.D. ’72) 2000 Kenneth L. Barun (’81) 2000 Burdette W. Keeland (’50) 2000
Dr. B. Montgomery Pettitt (’75, Ph.D. ’80) 2000 Judge Vanessa Gilmore ( J.D. ’81) 2002 Cynthia Woods Mitchell (’43) 2002
Dominique Sachse (’90) 2002 Melvyn Wolff (’53) 2002 Hon. Michael Cemo (’68) 2003
Hon. Vidal Martinez ( J.D. ’77) 2003 Dr. Kathryn “Kaye” Stripling (’67, Ed.D. ’85) 2003 Leroy Burrell (’94) 2004
Rose Cullen (FS ’57) 2004 Charles Matthews ( J.D. ’70) 2004 Dr. Anastacio Mindiola (’02) 2005
Hon. Margaret Spellings (’79) 2005 Dr. Herman Suit (’48) 2005 Dr. Patricia Potter Wilson (Ph.D. ’85) 2005
Carol L. Lewis (’89, ’92) 2006 Jack Moore (’77) 2006 Senator John Whitmire (’75) 2006
Gerald McElvy (’75) 2007 Hon. Martha Wong (’76, Ed.D. ’83) 2007 Dr. Dorothy E.F. Caram (Ed.D. ’82) 2008
Marvin D. Nathan (’65, J.D. ’69) 2008 Col. Barrye L. Price, Ph.D. (’85) 2008 Christopher Theofanidis (’90) 2008
Karen W. Katz (M.B.A. ’82) 2009 Miguel R. San Juan (’74) 2009 Alvin L. Zimmerman (’64, J.D. ’67) 2009
Richard Coselli (’55, J.D. ’58) 2010 Elizabeth Ghrist (M.Ed. ’67) 2010 Jim Perdue (’61, J.D. ’62) 2010
David Bertman (M.M. ’98) 2011 Cheryl Creuzot (’81, J.D. ’92, M.L. ’99, M.B.A. ’12) 2011 Leroy Hermes (’66) 2011
Beth Madison (’72) 2011 Durga Agrawal (M.S. ’69, Ph.D. ’74) 2012 Brett Cullen (’79) 2012
Lt. General Robert Milstead (’74) 2012 Dorothy T. Nicholson (’77) 2012 Dennis Quaid (’74) 2012
Robert Wuhl (’76) 2012 Dr. Roger Birkman (’47, M.S. ’47) 2013 Alonzo Cantu (’78) 2013
Loretta Devine (’71) 2013 Dr. Dennis Golden (’76, O.D. ’77) 2013 Vicki & Nick (’73) Massad 2013
Richard Rawson (’72) 2013 Doug Brooks (’75) 2014 Rafael Ortega (’81, M.B.A. ’85) 2014
Andre Ware (’96) 2014 Dr. Philip Zelikow (’77, J.D. ’79) 2014 Aylwin Lewis (’76, M.B.A. ’90) 2015
Bill Worrell (’69) 2015 Rushion McDonald (’83) 2015 Ken Bailey (’69, J.D. ’72) 2015
Dominic Ng (’80) 2015 Dr. William Brookshire (’57) 2016 Billy Ray Brown (’85) 2016
Alan Gershenhorn (’82) 2016 Pamela O’Rourke (UHCL ’95) 2016 The Honorable Jarvis V. Hollingsworth ( J.D. ’93) 2017
J. Downey Bridgwater (’84) 2017 Star Jones ( J.D. ’86) 2017 The Honorable Melissa Noriega (’77, M. Ed. ’83) 2017
Wade Phillips (’70) 2017 The Honorable Sylvester Turner (’77) 2017 Spencer Armour (’77) 2018
Otis Birdsong (’77) 2018 James H. Greer (’54) 2018 Dr. Laura Murillo (’89, M.ED. ’98, Ed.D. ’03) 2018
Marvin Odum (M.B.A. ’95) 2018 Thasunda Brown Duckett (’96) 2019 Hanneke Faber (’90, M.B.A. ’92) 2019
David Ashley White (’68, M.M. ’74) 2019 Honorable Jim P. Wise (’66) 2019
Murray Stinson (FS ’68) 1994 Jim Wiseheart (’61) 1995 Pleas Doyle (’57) 1996
Billie Schneider 1997 Stephen Harcrow (’69) 1998 Janet A. Blair (’83) 2000
Judie (’95) & Glenn (FS ’68) Lilie 2002 Joanne ( J.D. ’85) & Larry (’68, J.D. ’70) Doherty 2003 Josanna (‘80) & Hon. Thaddeus “Bo” (‘67) Smith 2003
Richard Coselli (’55, J.D. ’58) 2004 Graham Painter (’72) 2004 Shirley (FS ’82) & Matthew (’59) Provenzano 2004
J. Downey Bridgwater (’84) 2005 Sharon Stinson 2005 Cathy Coers Frank (’80) 2006
Francie Willis 2006 Margaret Bock (FS ’57) 2007 Sonny Messiah-Jiles (’74) 2007
J.W. “Willie” Burns (’58) 2008 David M. Doll (’88, M.B.A. ’92) 2008 Chris Mims (’87) 2008
Linda (’64) & Stanley (’60, J.D. ’62) Binion 2009 Elaine (’82) & Tommy (’80) Ebner 2010 George Leroy Hall (’56, ’77, M.S. ’11) 2010
Robert Planck (’71) 2010 Judy (’68) & Ken (FS ’65) Baxter 2011 Mike Holley (’90) 2011
Audray McMillian (’84) 2012 Ron Page (’80) 2012 Rick Bowen (’88, M.B.A. ’91) 2013
Lance “Hopper” Livingston (’66) 2014 Rick Noriega (’84) 2014 Laurie Rutherford (’86, M.B.A. ’91, M.S. ’04) 2015
Nancy and Dale (’70) Lowe 2016 Dr. Demetrius “Dee” Pearson (Ed.D. ’90) 2016 Kim (’81) & John (’82) Clarke 2017
Kimberly (‘93) & Trey (‘92, M.B.A. ‘02) Wilkinson 2018 James Holmes (‘86) 2018 Preston Johnson, Jr. (FS ’87, UHCL M.B.A. ’83) 2019
Don McKusker (’50) 2003 Becky Hyatt (’93) 2004 Sherman Smith, Jr. (’76) 2005
Jeffrey D. Fuller (’95, M.Ed. ’07) 2006 Cynthia Oliver Coleman (’71) 2007 Alton “Red” Veselka (’77) 2008
Perry Pace, III (FS ’68) 2009 Patty Godfrey (’89, M.B.A. ’97) 2010 Joe Green (’80) 2011
Judy Chong (’69, ’76) 2012 Yuen-Yee Ma (M.B.A. ’77) 2013 Amanda Heath (’02) 2014
Dr. Sharon Spillman (’97, M.Ed. ’03, Ed.D. ’11) 2014 John T. McNabb 2015 Drue DaSilva (’93, M.S. ’99) 2015
Barbara Parrott McGinity (’74, M.S.W. ’00) 2016 Margarita Barcenas (UHD ’92, M.B.A. ’03) 2016 Nicolas Brines (’92) 2017
Charlene Johnson (‘91) 2018 Michael Alcorn (’07) 2019
Robert W. Baker 1969 Max Levine 1969 Hon. Colonel W. B. Bates 1970
Hon. Mrs. Ray Dudley 1971 Harry H. Fouke 1971 Dr. Philip G. Hoffman 1971
Robert W. Kneebone 1972 C.F. McElhinney 1973 Hon. Aaron J. Farfel 1974
Bessie M. Ebaugh 1975 L. Standlee Mitchell 1975 Mrs. Gus Wortham 1976
Hon. Mr. & Mrs. Hugh Roy Cullen 1977 Mrs. Marty Harris 1978 Don D. Jordan 1979
George P. Mitchell 1979 Bill Yeoman 1979 Eric Hilton 1980
A.A. White 1980 John R. Butler, Jr. 1981 Dr. Barry Munitz 1981
George A. Butler 1982 Hon. Mack H. Hannah, Jr. 1982 Frell L. Albright 1983
Elliott A. Johnson 1983 Roland S. McGinnis 1983 William T. Slick (FS ’63) 1985
Stewart Orton 1986 Hon. John T. Cater 1988 Hon. James L. Ketelsen 1990
Hon. Corbin Robertson, Sr. 1991 John Walsh (FS ’73) 1992 Robert C. Lanier 1993
Rev. William Lawson 1994 Dean John M. Ivancevich 1995 Max Watson 1996
Dr. & Mrs. Glenn Goerke 1997 Tom Tellez 1998 Lee W. Hogan 2000
Cheryl L. Thompson– Draper 2000 Charles T. Bauer 2002 Lucile B. Melcher 2002
Hon. Wilhelmina “Beth” Robertson 2003 Hon. Tilman Fertitta (FS ’78) 2004 Hon. William P. Hobby 2004
Gasper Mir, III 2005 Robert Mosbacher, Jr. 2005 Dena Lewis 2006
A.J. Yeoman 2006 Jim McIngvale 2007 Bill Moffit 2007
Dr. Carolyn Farb, h.c. 2008 Carey C. Shuart 2009 Bruce Williams 2010
John Hofmeister 2011 Lillie Therese Robertson 2012 Meredith Mitchell Dreiss 2013
University of Houston Student Body 2015 Michael “Doc” O’Shea 2017 Ted L. Estess 2019
Stephanie “Steph” Sherrodd 2019
Jim Parsons (’96) 2010 Carlos de Aldecoa Bueno (’97) 2011 James Hong (’05) 2012
Hon. Jacqueline Baly (’90) 2013 Robert Flores (’92) 2015 Lisa Cushing (’01) 2016
Erik Barajas (’99) 2017 Clara Hough (‘02) 2018 Alexander W. Obregon (’09, M.B.A. ’14) 2019
Katie Kalenda Daggett (’99, M.A. ’03) 2010