What do a former governor, a business mogul and a NASA astronaut have in common? All three are UNH alumni who were on campus this fall to receive awards from their alma mater.
On Sept. 21, Peter T. Paul ’67 and the Honorable John Lynch ’74 received UNH’s most prestigious awards for their support of and service to the university. Lynch, whose four terms as New Hampshire’s 80th governor spanned 2005–2013, received the Charles Holmes Pettee Medal, which honors individuals whose life work reflects exceptional service to the state, nation or world. Paul, an entrepreneur and philanthropist whose $25 million gift enabled the construction of the Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics, was presented with the UNH Foundation’s Hubbard Family Award for Service to Philanthropy, the university’s highest honor to recognize philanthropic leadership and gifts. He’s one of a handful of UNH double honorees, having received the Pettee Medal in 2009.
The pair of awards anchored the university’s annual Evening of Distinction celebration, which this year included two additional honors. Nationally known sportswriter and commentator Jackie MacMullan Boyle ’82 received UNH’s Award of Excellence for Outstanding Achievement, and former Wildcat athlete and faithful volunteer Len Willey ’55 took home the Alumni Meritorious Service Award.
A week after the Evening of Distinction, on Sept. 28, NASA astronaut Lee Morin ’74 was in Durham to receive the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences Distinguished Alumni award. A Manchester, New Hampshire, native and the veteran of some 14 spacewalks, Morin spoke about the importance of keeping an open mind and the opportunities available both at and beyond UNH — a fitting framework for his public talk, “Transforming Fantasy — Building a Space Station,” at Holloway Commons.
Originally published in UNH Magazine Winter 2018 Issue