UNH Alumni Association

UNH Honors Five for Outstanding Contributions for the University

By Maggie Paine
UNH Alumni Association

June 17, 2002

DURHAM, N.H.ăThe University of New Hampshire Alumni Association honored five people, all of whom have made outstanding contributions to the university, during the traditional reunion weekend June 7‚9, when graduates traveled from as far away as Japan to see old friends and to attend the weekend's events.

The Alumni Meritorious Service Award was presented to two graduates for their devotion and loyalty in maintaining class or other UNH organizations, active participation in alumni or university affairs, or assistance in expanding the influence and prestige of the university. The awards were made to Phyllis Killam Abell of Portsmouth, who graduated in 1950, and Stella Emanuel Scamman of Stratham, who graduated in 1963.

Abell was recognized for her contributions to her alma mater as a teacher, researcher and administrator and for her leadership in showcasing a century of change and progress for women at UNH. In particular, she was cited for developing a traveling exhibit that illustrates the initiatives, struggles and accomplishments of UNH women from the late 19th century to the beginning of the 21st century.

Scamman was honored for her deep commitment to higher education through her distinguished service as a trustee of the University System of New Hampshire (USNH) and as a longtime advocate for higher education in the business community. The award also recognized her service to the Community Technical College, to Leadership New Hampshire and on many UNH Alumni Association committees.

Established in 1965, the Profile of Service Award is presented to individuals, who may or may not be alumni, for outstanding performance on behalf of the Alumni Association or UNH. Alumni John F. Weeks of Concord and James Yakovakis of York Beach, Maine, were this year's recipients.

A 1955 graduate of UNH, Weeks was honored for his support of and advocacy for UNH. In particular, he was cited for his exemplary service and leadership as a member of the UNH Alumni Association Board of Directors, as a founding member of the UNH Foundation and as a member of the USNH Board of Trustees. Weeks was also recognized for establishing the Weeks Family Fund that benefits the College of Life Sciences and Agriculture.

Yakovakis, who graduated from UNH in 1957, was honored for his dedication to the university and for his many years of involvement in alumni affairs. Yakovakis has served as chair of the USNH Board of Trustees, as a director of the UNH Foundation and as a leader in the Manchester community. Through his efforts, the University of New Hampshire at Manchester was able to raise money to create a library in Manchester's mill yard, providing an outstanding resource for students, faculty members and the people of the Queen City.

The Young Alumni Achievement Award, which recognizes a young graduate who has provided service to UNH and who has demonstrated leadership and promise, was presented to Michael Proulx of Somerville, Mass. Proulx, who graduated in 1995, was a student leader at UNH. After graduation, he became active in the Boston chapter and has consistently and successfully found ways to engage younger alumni. He has served on the UNH Alumni Association Board of Directors and organized the first ever Student Senate reunion in the fall of 2001. Proulx tracked down graduates from the 1970s through 2001 for that event and created a history of the Student Senate on CD-ROM for each reunion participant.

Also during the awards luncheon, the Class of 1952 presented its class gift of more than $321,000. Forty-two percent of class members contributed, and much of the gift will be used to establish an endowment for the International Research Opportunities Program.

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