Homecoming 2010

 

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ALUMNI AWARDS OF MERIT
Photography by Stuart Watson

EUGENE KOHN, AR’53, GAR’57
Alumni Award of Merit

Towering achievements are your specialty, including some of the world’s tallest buildings, like the Shanghai World Financial Center, and one of the most important to Penn, Huntsman Hall.

As a founder and principal of Kohn Pederson Fox and Associates, you shaped the firm into a world leader in all aspects of architectural practice. Now, you have offices in New York, London, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Seoul, and Abu Dhabi, and a staff of 500, representing 43 countries and speaking 30 languages. By uniting design and development teams to create buildings that contribute to their surroundings on both functional and social levels, you have led your firm to more than 300 design awards. Integrating skyscrapers into the urban fabric, you developed technologies that make them more ecologically-responsible. Numerous awards attest to your service both to humanity and to your profession, including the Ellis Island Medal of Honor and the Salvadori Award for Excellence in Design, and you are sought the world over as a moderator, juror, and keynote speaker on contemporary architecture. You are also the first architect to be named an Executive Fellow of the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University.

Over the years, you have carried your strengths and accomplishments back to Penn, where you served as a University Trustee. At PennDesign, you earned Emeritus Overseer status for your work as Chair—connecting the School to the New York architectural community, recruiting members to the Board of Overseers, making your firm’s gallery space available to students for shows, hiring graduates, lecturing regularly at the School, and even mounting an exhibition on the design of high-rise buildings for Penn students. You also endowed a fellowship fund in your parents’ names and, with your colleagues, established an annual lecture series to bring the most interesting rising stars from around the world to lecture at Penn. In 2008, PennDesign conferred upon you its Medal of Achievement in Architecture.

A second-generation Penn alumnus—your late father was a graduate of the Veterinary School—you find many ways to convey your pride in Penn, just as Penn has shown its pride in you. Your honors include the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Wharton Real Estate Center, where you continue to serve on the Advisory Board.

Through your monumental contributions, from creating some of the world’s most important structures to being a founding member of The Penn Club of New York, you give visual representation to Penn’s commitment to building a better world. With much gratitude and with admiration for your humor and optimism, we present you with the 2010 Alumni Award of Merit.


 
HERBERT I. MOELIS, ESQ., W’53
Alumni Award of Merit

Your Penn connections are deep and varied, as demonstrated by your Wharton degree and your positive impact on both the Penn Libraries and the School of Veterinary Medicine. A lawyer by profession and an idealist by inclination, you merge practicality and activism for important causes throughout society, while inspiring your family to follow your lead.

Even before your ten-year term as a Library Overseer began in 1989, you joined with your brothers in honoring the memory of your father with the Larry Moelis Online Search Services Room in Van-Pelt Dietrich Library.  Since then, you and your family have committed yourselves to the further development of learning spaces and electronic resources in the Library by creating the Larry and Frances Moelis Electronic Research Area and the Moelis Family Lounge.  Over the years, you have continued to attend Library Board meetings with your wife Ellen, who has been a Library Overseer since 2005.  You and Ellen were the first individual donors to make a lead pledge to the Special Collections Research Center, where your gift will name the sixth floor Reading Terrace.

Additionally, you served for ten years on the Board of Overseers of the Veterinary School, where you brought your knowledge of horse breeding and racing to your work as Chair of the Equine Committee. During your tenure, you responded to the widespread abuse and neglect of racehorses by founding and presiding over Thoroughbred Charities of America, making giant inroads into a problem that once seemed insurmountable. Through your own support and that facilitated by TCA, you contributed to the successful completion of the Vet School’s critically needed teaching and research facility in Philadelphia (The Hill Pavilion), and the many improvements at New Bolton Center’s George D. Widener Hospital for Large Animals, including the Richard S. Reynolds, Jr. Comparative Orthopedic Research Laboratory, the Scott Equine Sports Medicine Facility, and the Biomechanics Laboratory.  In 2001, you and your wife, Ellen, were honored at the Devon Gold Cup Reception for your years of dedication and service to the Veterinary School.

 Your good works are further extended through the Moelis Family Foundation in support of medical research, animal welfare, and children’s causes, including health and education. This is a family venture designed to introduce the concept of charity to the members of the Moelis family at a young age.  The ten Moelis grandchildren, five of whom now have Penn affiliations after their names, became eligible for the Junior Board of the Moelis Family Foundation at age eight and were then included in all discussions relating to grants.

The Moelis record of leadership at Penn is being carried on by your Penn alumni children: Ron, a member of the Netter Center for Community Partnerships Board and a former Overseer of the School of Arts and Sciences; Ken, an Overseer at the Wharton School; and Cindy, a member of the School of Social Policy & Practice Board of Overseers. And your grandchildren—Jordan, Andrew, Cory, Madelyn, and Adam—have continued the legacy. A daughter in-law and nephew are all also a part of the Penn alumni family.

With a passion for education and for making the world a better place for all its inhabitants, you exemplify the great Penn spirit of service and commitment. With gratitude and affection, we proudly present you with the Alumni Award of Merit for 2010.


LAWRENCE C. NUSSDORF, ESQ., W’68
Alumni Award of Merit

At every level—as a University Trustee, as Vice Chair of the Overseers for the Graduate School of Education, as a spokesperson for the academic life of the University, and as a Penn parent infusing your sons with a great love for your shared alma mater—you have dedicated yourself to strengthening the University.  Your personal legacy to Penn includes two important institutions—the Penn Institute for Urban Research and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Advisory Board—that simply would not be the same without your inspiration and guidance.

As a founding member of the Penn Institute for Urban Research Advisory Board, you have helped Penn become a leader in the modeling of high-functioning and resilient cities that work in partnership with their educational institutions. In addition to supporting the Institute’s building renovation, you established a fund for research-proven urban education practices. The Nussdorf Professorship in Urban Research and Education, held by IUR’s Co-Director, was endowed in your honor by your firm, Clark Enterprises.

As an innovative alumni leader, you helped found and then served as President of the dynamic Mid-Atlantic Regional Advisory Board, known to us all as MARAB. Over an eight-year period, you devoted countless hours to creating activities within the Washington-Baltimore area, increasing membership, and bringing Penn professors to DC to showcase Penn’s talents. Always passionate about reforming education, you raised and managed scholarship funds for low income students in the DC area, for which you were named Man of the Year by the Wharton Club of Washington, DC.  

On campus, your alumni service includes your current role as a member of the Alumni Society and your past service on the Penn Alumni Board of Directors and Alumni Council on Admissions Advisory Board. Over the years, you have devoted countless hours to meetings with students, University board members, and potential donors, and you have put your training as a lawyer to good use in all your board involvements. Your good heart, along with your integrity, keen intelligence, and ability to cut through problems to arrive at solutions, make you a wonderful advocate for those in need. All in all, you are the ultimate ambassador for Penn.

Your alumna wife Melanie, a Nursing School Overseer, and alumni sons, Jed and Ben, attest to your taking pride in Penn in every area of your life—just as, all across the University, Penn people take pride in you. It is with much gratitude and affection that we present you with the 2010 Alumni Award of Merit.


HARRIS G. ROMANOFF, EE’98, GEN’09
Young Alumni Award

Twelve years ago, as a Penn senior, you received the Harold Berger Award for a student who had made a lasting contribution to the quality of our lives.  Today, you are still meeting that standard—in your professional work, through your community engagement, and in your ongoing connection to Penn.

Once a passionate and charismatic student leader, you brought those same qualities to the Engineering Alumni Society Board, where you served as Director and Vice President and, most recently, completed your second term as President. As Chair of the Undergraduate Committee, the Alumni Society Mentoring Program, and several annual events committees, you recruited new members for the Board and created a presence on Facebook and LinkedIn. You have also built a relationship between graduates and current students and worked with Career Services to increase participation in alumni panels and outreach to students.
When you were a student, you had the thrill of winning both the Electrical Engineering Senior Design Competition and the overall Senior Design Competition. Now, that experience has come full circle as you return to campus every year to judge the Engineering Senior Design Competition.

You have made Penn proud by carrying your engineering know-how and civic spirit out into the world as co- founder of MakePhilly, a casual forum for creative individuals in the Philadelphia area, and The Hacktory, promoting the use of technology in the arts.

Strongly engaged with the broader University community, you are a member of the Penn Alumni Board of Directors, the Penn Alumni Council, and the Philadelphia Metro Regional Alumni Club, and are an enthusiastic volunteer for Homecoming and Alumni Weekend, where you are often joined by your alumni parents and wife.

 Now, as a part-time Penn student pursuing a Master’s degree in Integrated Product Design, you are back at the University; in truth, you have never been away. With gratitude and affection, we present you with the Young Alumni Award for 2010.


LEONARD SHAPIRO, W’64
Alumni Award of Merit | In Remembrance

Leonard Shapiro lives in our memories as a man of high energy, great warmth and humor, and an abiding love for Penn. He was much loved in return.

From the start, Lenny plunged exuberantly into college life as a swimmer, golfer, basketball player, Mask & Wigger, and Vice President of the Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity. When he returned to campus in the mid 1980s, he put his gifts as a communicator and natural connector to work as an Admissions Recruiter. Before long, he had become a founding member of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Advisory Board, familiarly known as MARAB.

From 1997 to 2006, Lenny served as both a University Trustee and an Overseer of the Graduate School of Education, terms that overlapped with his years as President of the Alumni Society. During that time, he charged himself with opening up lines of communication between volunteers in other parts of the country and the Penn leadership and Penn Alumni staff on campus. In addition to his role as President of the Penn Alumni Board of Directors, he served on its Alumni Council on Admissions Advisory Board and the Awards and Resolutions, Communications, and Nominations Committees, while still finding time to travel around the country cultivating and mentoring alumni leaders. As far away as California, he let volunteers know that the Trustees and administrators back at Penn knew of their efforts, cared about their success, and were eager to listen to their ideas and concerns. A prominent theme under Lenny’s leadership as President was inclusion. He strengthened the Diversity Alliance with the addition of several cultural groups; helped gain recognition for the Penn Alumni Student Society (PASS) that brought students and alumni together; and presided over the name transition from the University of Pennsylvania Alumni Society to Penn Alumni, ensuring that all Penn alumni felt like members for life.

Over the years, Lenny took on many other tasks as a member of the President’s Council, the Agenda for Excellence Council, the Wharton Real Estate Advisory Board, the University Committee for Undergraduate Financial Aid, the Class of 1964 Reunion Committee, and the Secondary School Committee. Appreciated for his charm, enthusiasm, and even his propensity for practical jokes, he was a welcome presence at The Penn Club of New York and at University events of every kind. When it came to basketball games, his cheers could be heard in neighboring states.

Lenny was a generous donor, too, especially to the Department of Music, where he and his wife, Leslie, were inspired by their son Teddy’s success as a composer to establish the Leonard A. Shapiro Music Performance Fund. In addition, he created the Leonard A. Shapiro Trustee Scholarship and contributed to Athletics and the Graduate School of Education. In 2007, he was recognized by President Amy Gutmann for the MARAB Scholarship Initiative.

In all that he did with and for Penn alumni—a group that, to his great pride, encompasses his daughter Ali and several other family members—Lenny brought an infectious sense of fun. With vivid memories of the joy he took in every festive Penn occasion, and knowing how much he would have delighted in this one, we proudly and gratefully recognize our dear friend Leonard Shapiro with the 2010 Alumni Award of Merit.


SUSAN MOLOFSKY TODRES, CW’75, WG’77
Alumni Award of Merit

Your long-time enthusiasm for Penn—ignited in your student days when you joined Kite & Key, made the Sphinx Honor Society, and wrote for The Daily Pennsylvanian—burst forth again ten years ago, just in time for The 125th Celebration of Women at Penn and the installation of the Women’s Walkway. Since then, you have been busy giving us all many more reasons to celebrate the University and your contributions to it.

A dedicated member of the Trustees’ Council of Penn Women and current Co-Chair of the Advancement of Women Faculty Committee, you were one of the creators of the Faculty Advisory Board that gives broad representation to women faculty of varying seniority from schools and centers across the campus. In your former role as a member of the TCPW Grants Committee, you demonstrated the sensitivity and insight necessary to evaluate the needs of recipient organizations.  
At the School of Social Policy and Practice, where you serve on the Board of Overseers, your Wharton marketing skills make you a valued Chair of the Marketing Subcommittee. Working with the dean and staff to spread the word about SP2’s growth, you have increased awareness of the variety of degree programs and the multitude of opportunities available at the School.

Your irrepressible Penn pride, evident through your past engagements with Wharton’s Leadership Gift Committee, the Class of 1975 Gift Committee, and the Penn Parents’ Program, finds ongoing expression in a way that is uniquely and magnificently your own—through your passionate researching, seeking out, and acquiring of Penn treasures. It is rumored that you take part in worldwide, online auctions, often in the middle of the night, in pursuit of just the right gifts for appreciative Penn people. Inspired by the importance and beauty of the University’s history, you have located and donated hundreds of pieces to the Penn Archives, where you serve under the proud banner of “Volunteer Memorabilia Agent.”

With a Penn alumnus husband and two Penn sons, you are Red and Blue through and through. It is with much affection and gratitude we present you with your own well-earned keepsake, the 2010 Alumni Award of Merit.  


C. K. WILLIAMS, C’59
Creative Spirit Award

It may seem almost superfluous to bestow an alumni award on a man who has already received the Pulitzer Prize, The National Book Award, a Pushcart Prize, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, and numerous other honors, but it is fitting that you be honored by the institution where you found your poetic voice.

That voice was initially heard in a poem written for an English class in your first year at Penn, and it has since been heard, discussed, appreciated—and loved—around the world. Whether in your early, overtly political work, or in your later, more personal poems, you have found the words to convey what it is like to live in today’s world. With long lines that employ the cadences of contemporary speech, you have expressed universal truth within particular reality, transforming the seemingly ordinary into something intensely meaningful. Grounded in experience, your poetry offers unique insights into the human condition.

You have said that “often our experience of beauty will be the first hint of what each of us at some point will dare call our soul.” With your poetry, you have reached our souls—individually, and as a society.

While your poetic voice is continually celebrated, your teaching voice is also recognized for its resonance. Throughout your life, you have devoted much of the time teaching others how poetry can enhance their lives. You spent many years as a peripatetic lecturer and writer-in-residence before settling down at Princeton, where you teach in the creative writing program. At Penn, you have shared your wisdom with students in Kelly Writers House.

In your teaching and your poetry, you inspire us to look both within and beyond ourselves. In so doing, you demonstrate the power not only of the word, but of the creative spirit. It is, therefore, with the greatest appreciation that the University of Pennsylvania presents you, C.K. Williams, with its 2010 Creative Spirit Award.

 

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©2011 The Pennsylvania Gazette


CLASS AWARDS

Class of 1990 | Class Award of Merit |
“Building on a successful 15th reunion, you expanded your volunteer group to include many newcomers who brought additional energy and new ideas to the planning for the 20th” resulting “in a superb $1.846 million class gift, surpassing your goal by more than $300,000.”
Class of 2005 | David N. Tyre Award for Excellence in Class Communications |
“Using innovative methods to keep classmates in close and frequent touch with each other and Penn…you created a committee that was geographically, academically, organizationally and culturally diverse…breaking the 5th year reunion attendance record with an unprecedented 413 attendees.”
PennNYC | Alumni Club Award of Merit |
“PennNYC consistently exceeds expectations as a regional alumni chapter” organizing “community service projects such as soup kitchen volunteer days and charity walks...the chapter’s 20 dedicated board members and 40 volunteers capitalize on alumni expertise to create diverse events for sold-out crowds throughout the year.”

 
       
  ©2011 The Pennsylvania Gazette
Last modified 12/23/10