Timothy J. Carlsen, ENG’92
In your undergraduate days, majoring in Systems Science and Engineering, you already stood out for your service as President of the Hexagon Engineering Society, member of the William Penn Scholars Program, tutor of freshmen engineering students, and recipient of the David S. Fine Memorial Award in Civil Engineering. Now one of Penn’s most dedicated volunteers, you stand out as a leader of the Penn Engineering Alumni Society Board, where your commitment to advancing integration, collaboration, and diversity have strengthened alumni connections with each other, with Penn Engineering, and with Penn as a whole.
Your service on the Penn Engineering Alumni Society Board has included roles as President, Vice President, and Director. The meetings you led as President of this Board are legendary - filled with lively discussion, friendly debate, and your trademark quick wit and infectious enthusiasm. Your list of accomplishments while at the helm of the Board is endless. These include outstanding programming for students, exciting new events for alumni, serving as Penn Engineering’s first representative on the Penn Alumni Board of Directors, and interdisciplinary endeavors that spanned across the University. Your fellow Board members laud your success in recruiting and reconnecting recent graduates with their alma mater to ensure an enthusiastic and committed new group of leaders to carry the Penn Engineering Alumni Society forward.
A consulting forensic engineer with a master’s degree from Notre Dame, specializing in civil, environmental and structural engineering matters, you remain close to Penn Engineering at every level. You have served as Chair of the Alumni Society Mentoring Program, the Senior Design Project Competition, and the D. Robert Yarnall Award Nominating Committee for distinguished alumni.
From the drawing board to the practical application of ideas, you are one of Penn’s most effective and committed alumni leaders. Penn Alumni is proud to present you with its highest accolade, the 2007 Young Alumni Award.
Benjamin H. Craine, W’65
Successful business owner and dedicated photographer, you are a tireless motivator and an endless source of encouragement to all. Your unmatched responsiveness and enthusiasm have left an indelible impression on fellow alumni volunteers and Alumni Relations staff alike.
For nearly 40 years you have been a mainstay of the Penn & Wharton Club of Michigan, where you now serve as Vice President of Communications and as a member of the Wharton Club Executive Committee and where you have enhanced the club’s website with an instrumental organ rendition of The Red and Blue. With a winter home in Scottsdale, you have also revitalized the Penn & Wharton Club of Arizona. Communications Coordinator par excellence, you maintain a dynamic website, coordinate email communications, and developed an event calendar that features creative and engaging programming. Known for attending almost every Student Sendoff event for both clubs, you have formally welcomed a host of future alumni into the Penn community.
You also play an active role on the Global Alumni Network Advisory Board, participating in GAN networking exchanges on campus, conference calls, and meetings. In addition, you are a long-time volunteer for the Secondary School Committee.
Your love for the theater arts at Penn goes back to your undergraduate days. While majoring in accounting, you also served on the Board of Penn Players for three years, and fondly remember celebrating the group’s 25th anniversary in 1962. In addition, you were in charge of theater lighting for this performing arts group as well as for Irvine Auditorium.
Dedicated, articulate, and gracious, you are an invaluable member of the Penn Alumni family and an ideal ambassador for your alma mater. Penn Alumni is proud to present you with its highest accolade, the 2007 Alumni Award of Merit.
Elin C. Danien, CGS’82, G’89, GR’98
You were 46 years old when you enrolled in the College of General Studies, having been otherwise occupied with “trying to become the great American actress” and working as a copywriter and journalist. Majoring in anthropology, you graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa.
Going on to earn your masters and doctoral degrees in anthropology at Penn, you wrote your dissertation on polychrome Mayan pottery from the University Museum’s Guatemalan highlands collection. Even before your student days, you served as a University Museum docent. Today, you continue to maintain a rigorous tour guide schedule while pursuing your now decade-long career at the Museum as a Research Associate.
But you have a second great love at Penn. As a student at the College of General Studies (CGS) you were impressed by the women you met, many with families to support, who were struggling hard to pay for continuing education. Determined to help, you approached CGS with a bold idea and $1,000 in seed money for Bread Upon the Waters, a scholarship program that enables women over the age of 30 to pursue an undergraduate degree through part-time study at Penn. The name proved prophetic. Twenty years later, having benefited from your constant involvement and leadership as Chair of the Advisory Board, Bread Scholarships are self-supporting with an endowment of over $2 million and annual gifts topping $100,000. You have made a Penn education possible for eighty-five academically-gifted women, over half of whom have graduated with honors. For your spectacular achievement, you were recognized in 2001 by a CGS Service Award.
Whether studying the past or opening up paths of progress for your contemporaries, you are an inspirational leader who represents the best of Penn. Penn Alumni is proud to present you with its highest accolade, the 2007 Alumni Award of Merit.
Lolita K. Jackson, ENG’89
As an alumna who went from singing in Penn student groups to performing as a jazz singer on stages in Shanghai, Sydney, London, and Carnegie Hall, you bring valuable perspectives to the Annenberg Center Board of Overseers and the Student Performing Arts Advisory Committee. At the same time, your work in the Community Affairs Office for the Mayor of New York City strengthens your contributions to the Penn Alumni Board of Directors, where you serve as Vice President of Leadership Development.
In fact, your presence is felt and appreciated throughout the University: on the Penn Social Responsibility Advisory Committee (as one of two alumni representatives chosen by President Gutmann); on the Alumni Class Leadership Council, where you are Vice President of Communications; as Vice President of the Class of 1989 (and 15th Reunion Chair the year the class won the Class Award of Merit); on the Alumni Council on Admissions Advisory Committee; and as a member of the Trustees’ Council of Penn Women.
In recent years, you served as inaugural Co-Chair of the Penn Alumni Diversity Alliance and as founder and Co-Chair of 250-in-5, through which you helped raise $1 million for minority scholarships. You organized a panel and served on the steering committee for the Penn Media Summit and performed at Pennfest, the Red & Blue Rendezvous, and the Counterparts 2006 Reunion. You helped to increase undergraduate students’ access to the performing arts by organizing the successful BLAAC to School 2007, benefiting Ben’s Tix, the Annenberg Center’s ticket subsidy program. In 2003, you were our Alumni Day Parade Marshall, and in 2005 you were named Friar of the Year.
When you were an undergraduate, you excelled as both a singer and a Daily Pennsylvanian editorial columnist; today your voice and ideas continue to be heard at Penn and beyond. Penn Alumni is proud to present you with its highest accolade, the 2007 Alumni Award of Merit.
Susan T. Marx, CW’66
You say you found your vision and your dreams as a Penn undergraduate, “exposed to new and wondrous areas of study,” serving as president of your sorority, being initiated into the Mortarboard Senior Honor Society, tutoring, and working on the yearbook. Now you have your own fundraising consulting company for non-profit agencies in the human services, health, education, and arts, and also volunteer for international causes.
As a member of the Trustees’ Council of Penn Women (TCPW), you served on its Fundraising Committee for four years and are now Co-Chair of the Grants Committee, where your diligent work has made a lasting impact on student initiatives on campus, safety within the Penn community, and the lives of individual students. You draw on your impressive network of Penn people to recruit new members to the Council and find venues for events. It is said that you have been as effective in building TCPW spirit among Penn men as among Penn women.
A devoted member of The Penn Club of New York Board of Directors, you were a highly regarded Chair of the House Committee and currently serve as Vice President and Treasurer. You also served on the University Museum’s New York City Committee for its 21st Century Campaign. As Vice-Chair of your class’s 40th Reunion, you organized an innovative Rock and Roll seminar that helped bring alumni back from far and wide. Dividing your time equally between New York and San Francisco, you represent Penn well on both coasts as well as in the art community.
You are also a serious stone carver, a passion you say was awakened by your “exposure to a number of wonderful art history courses at Penn.”
Creative and committed, both willing and able to do good in the world, you are a true daughter of Penn. Penn Alumni is proud to present you with its highest accolade, the 2007 Alumni Award of Merit.
Meesh Joslyn Pierce, W’93, WG’98
An enthusiastic member of the Wharton Alumni Association Board of Directors, you delight in bringing Wharton to Southern California and in keeping California alumni close to Penn. Despite the demand of running your own consulting business, you volunteer enormous quantities of time and energy to your alma mater.
During your three-year term as President of the Wharton Club of Southern California, you doubled the club’s membership; engaged an outstanding leadership team; and initiated and promoted speaker series, popular social events, and affinity interest groups, such as media and entertainment and C-Circle for c-level executives. Going beyond your individual club leadership, you were instrumental in the development of a cutting edge club management tool, which now serves as the enterprise platform for WhartonConnect, the school’s online community for 82,000 alumni in 140 countries around the world. In addition, you serve the University as an interviewer for your Secondary School Committee and were an active member of your class’s 5th Reunion Committee.
Back in your undergraduate days, you served Wharton as its Media and Entertainment Club Conference Chair; photographer for the Wharton yearbook; webmaster for the Wharton Journal; member of the Wharton volleyball team; and manager of lightweight football, all while majoring in economics, with a concentration in entrepreneurial management. Five years later, you returned to Wharton for your master’s degree.
A dynamic Penn ambassador in Southern California and a true agent of advancement, you share your knowledge and wisdom with other club leaders. Penn Alumni is proud to present you with its highest accolade, the 2007 Young Alumni Award.
James Thomson V’85 Gr’88 turns skin cells into stem cells
©2008 The Pennsylvania Gazette
Last modified 04/25/08