Holy Names University Celebrates Homecoming with Four Days of Events

The 39th Annual Holy Names University (HNU) Alumni Awards Ceremony will be celebrated on Friday, October 19, 2012. The evening’s event is the highlight of a four-day, Homecoming Celebration that begins with the Cushing Library Salon Series: Alumni Book Talk on Tuesday, October 16, followed by an evening with Father Greg Boyle on October 17, and ends with the Homecoming Reunion and wine social at Cerruti Cellars on Saturday, October 20.

The Alumni Book Talk celebrates the literary accomplishments of three HNU alumni, including Jennifer Martin ’67, The Huna Warrior: The Magic Begins, Belo Miguel Cipriani ’12, Blind: A Memoir, and QueenKay (KayKay Amamgbo) ’14, The Reconstruction and Transformation of QueenKay. This event is open to the public, is free and begins at 6:30 p.m. on October 16.

On Wednesday, October 17, the University welcomes Father Greg Boyle, SJ, to the Valley Center for the Performing Arts. Father Boyle is the Founder of Homeboy Industries (serving at-risk and gang-involved youth) and author of Tattoos on the Heart. His presentation will begin at 7 p.m. and will include a book signing.

On Friday, October 19, at 6:00 p.m., the Alumni Awards Ceremony will honor four individuals. The Alumni Recognition Award will be presented to Monica Odero-Winegar, RN, ’00 MSN, ’09 FNP, for her outstanding achievement in a profession or service to the Church or community. Ms. Odero-Wiegar is a Member of the Board of Directors, Prevention International: No Cervical Cancer, the Tamu Orphans Support Foundation and the Tiba Foundation. Originally from Kenya, Monica Odero-Winegar came to the United States in 1980 to begin her undergraduate studies at California State University, Sacramento. She later enrolled at Holy Names University where she graduated in 2000 with a Master of Science degree in nursing. She currently works in the outpatient Travel Clinic at the Kaiser Medical Center in Oakland.

The Young Alumni Award will be presented to Michael Stout ’01, for his efforts in enhancing the prestige of the University. Since graduating in 2001, Michael Stout has been successful in creating franchises in the Video Game Industry (Skylanders, Ratchet and Clank, Resistance:Fall of Man). Mr. Stout has also authored a number of featured articles for Gamasutra.com, the online version of Game Developer Magazine. He currently works at Activision Publishing as a Senior Game Design Specialist.

The 2012 Faculty Award will be presented to Thea Maestre, Ed.D., Professor and Coordinator of the Multiple Subject Credential Program, for her outstanding service and loyalty to the University. Throughout her professional career, elementary teaching has been the focus of Professor Maestre activities. She received her teaching credential at Holy Names College in 1971. She then taught grades one through six in the Oakland Unified School District for twenty-five years. After earning her doctorate at the University of California at Berkeley in 1995, she returned to Holy Names to prepare future elementary school teachers. Following her interest in social studies curriculum, she co-authored a book with Dr. Joan Skolnick and Dr. Nancy Dulberg: Through Other Eyes: Developing Empathy and Multiple Perspectives in the Social Studies. In her most recent work, she has incorporated Mindfulness as a stress reduction strategy for urban teachers.

HNU President, Dr. William J. Hynes, salutes the contributions of these inspirational alumni, “I am honored to recognize the recipients of this year’s alumni awards. These individuals exemplify the essence of a Holy Names University education. In their own unique way, they are transforming lives and liberating minds. The University is proud that they chose HNU as their educational home.”

The Alumni Awards Celebration will also honor James E. Durbin, MBA, CPA, in Memoriam, for his distinguished service and leadership to the University as an Associate Professor, Director of the MBA Program, and Chair of the Business Department. Jim had over 20 years of professional business experience in middle and senior management positions, he owned a privately-held $11 million building supply company, and he was also a California Real Estate Broker. Jim was a treasured friend and colleague to the HNU community since 1971.

The alumni homecoming reunion festivities take place on the HNU campus on Saturday, October 20. The finale celebration will highlight a wine social at Cerruti Cellars at Jack London Square at 5:00 p.m.

The awards committee for this event was composed of Ann C. Dunlap-Kahren ’88, Chairperson; Julie Nelson Echaniz ’75 Alumni Executive Board President; Roberta C. Fogerty ’72; Beth H. Hoenninger ’88; Patricia McMahon ’64, Ph.D.; and Roberta M. Palumbo ’68.

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