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Academy of Distinguished Alumni


The Academy of Distinguished Alumni honors West Virginia University graduates who have attained national or international distinction in their profession or discipline. The award has been established by the West Virginia University Alumni Association in cooperation with the University’s 14 schools and colleges. Nominations can be submitted electronically through September 30, 2017 (for consideration for 2018) or anytime thereafter for future nominations.

Since 1988, this prestigious award has been bestowed on nearly 100 West Virginia University alumni, including Jerry West, David Selby, Dr. Nancy Nielsen, Rod “Hot Rod” Hundley, Sam Huff and Gen. Robert H. Foglesong.

The 2017 Class of Academy of Distinguished Alumni honorees were acknowledged at our annual event held on May 19, 2017.

2017 Inductees

This year’s class will include Dr. Linda Carson, Ware Distinguished Professor Emerita and CEO of Choosy Kids, Dr. George Fahey, Professor Emeritus of Animal Sciences and Nutritional Sciences at the University of Illinois, Katherine Johnson, a pioneer of the American space movement and Mathematician and Physicist at NASA, and William Bayless, Cofounder of American Campus Communities, a $9 billion development corporation. The group will be honored during a special induction ceremony at The Erickson Alumni Center on May 19.


How are inductees selected?

Inductees are nominated by the general membership of the Alumni Association or their respective schools or colleges. Information on the honorees is permanently displayed in The Erickson Alumni Center . To be considered for this prestigious recognition, nominees must hold a degree from West Virginia University; he/she should be recognized in his/her profession at the national or international level; and he/she cannot be present WVU, WVU Alumni Association, or WVU Foundation, Inc. employees. (However, this would not necessarily exclude members of the Board of Governors, Foundation Board, etc.).

WVU Alumni Association membership/support, WVU support, WVUFoundation, Inc. support or monetary support to any of these three are not limiting factors for nomination.

How can I nominate an alumnus/a?

You can nominate individuals for this award by completing the on-line form or by downloading/completing the nomination form and submitting it, along with all required documentation, to the WVU Alumni Association at P.O. Box 4269, Morgantown, WV 26504-4269. Nominations for the 2017 Academy of Distinguished Alumni can be submitted by September 30, 2016. Nominations can be submitted at any time throughout the year for consideration the following year. Inductees will be selected in Fall 2016. The 2017 Academy of Distinguished Alumni will take place in April 2017. 

Academy Inductees


Dr. Linda Carson

Dr. George Fahey

Katherine Johnson

William Bayless


Jerome Black

Robert Corsi, Jr.

Dr. William Neal


Judith Hayes

Thomas Menighan

Rustin Moore

James Valenti


Vicente Anido, Jr.

Goal Krishna

Bernadette M. Melnyk

Joseph P. Steranka


Kyung Won (K.W.) Lee

Joel G. Newman

Rouzbeh Yassini-Fard


Don Brodie

Chuck Howley

Robert McNabb


Al Zamil Family

Benjamin M. Statler

Kimberly A. Weaver


George Bennett

Addison Fischer

Don Knotts


Nancy Nielsen

Gregory Babe

Scott Widmeyer


General Bantz J. John Craddock

B. Thomas Hutchinson


Patrice A. Harris

Peter J. Kalis


Frank Cerminara

Thomas L. Harrison

Marshall S. Miller


James J. Caveney

Rodney C. "Hot Rod" Hundley

Earl G. Ken Kendrick, Jr.

Verl O. Purdy


Edward O. Buckbee

Charles H. Haden II

Pamela Maphis Larrick

Robert L. Reynolds


Michael Ammar

Jennie C. Hunter-Cevera

Rodney K. Thorn


Joseph Simpson Farland

Stuart M. Robbins

Ivan R. Schwab

Loretta M. Ucelli


A. Bray Cary

Raymond G. Gillette, Jr.

Diana J. Mason


W. Robert Grafton

Kenneth R. Wykle

Alfred F. Ware


Charles I. Homan

Michele V. McNeill

Winston L. Shelton

David H. Whiston


Robert H. Foglesong

Kathy Quattrone

Chris Sarandon

Terry L. Wimmer


W. Marston Becker

Raymond J. Lane

Cassandra L. Smith


Charles S. Mahan

J. Davitt McAteer

Jayne Anne Phillips

Jack Ward Thomas


Larry J. Agiro

Robert L. DeProspero

James J. Fagan

Kathleen M. Hawk

Frances Lopinksy Horn


Jay A. Chattaway

Kenneth D. Gray

H. Leo Mehl

Fred A. Schaus


Stephen Ailes

Curtis H. Barnette

C. Howard Hardesty

Larry Schwab

Thomas C. Spelsberg


Stephen P. Coonts

George J. Esper

Richard T. Feller

Lowell T. Harmison

Vivien Perrine Woofter


General Earl E. Anderson

David Charles Fogarty

William Leonhart

Charles M. Vest

Jerry West


George B. Berry

Emily R. Morey-Holton

Maj. Gen. Thomas Ferguson

Robert Sam Huff

James D. McComas


Dorothy J. Dotson

Glen H. Hiner

Paul A. Miller

Louise McNeill Pease

David Selby


Joseph E. Antonini

Albert E. Freeman

Robert H. Quenon

William E. Swales

Academy of Distinguished Alumni 2017

Academy Inductees 2017

Dr. Linda Carson
Dr. George Fahey
Katherine Johnson
William Bayless