There are no limits to where your UWM degree can take you. We’re reminded of that each year when the Alumni Association recognizes its talented and inspirational alumni and friends.

The annual Alumni Awards Evening is moving to spring! Please save the new date – Friday, April 3, 2020.

Award Criteria & Categories

The Alumni Association solicits nominations for the awards from all members of the University community. A committee of the Alumni Association Board of Trustees reviews the materials submitted on each candidate and selects those candidates who are deemed most deserving of recognition and whose achievements most closely fit the category for which they have been nominated. The committee often invites consulting members to assist in its deliberations. Individuals chosen to receive awards are honored each year at the Alumni Awards Evening.

Award Categories

  • Lifetime Achievement Award
    This award is presented on limited occasions when the UWM Alumni Association recognizes an alumnus/alumna with exemplary achievements over the span of a lifetime. This award recognizes those who have had extraordinary success in the following arenas: professional achievement, community involvement, advancement of UWM’s mission, giving back of time, effort, and/or capital and encouraging and inspiring future leaders.
  • Distinguished Alumni Service Award
    This award recognizes alumni for exceptional volunteer leadership in service to UWM and the Alumni Association. Recipients will demonstrate a quality and depth of service to UWM that is truly outstanding. To be awarded to one alumna/us annually.
  • Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award
    This award honors a mid-career UWM graduate who has had a significant impact on his/her profession and who has contributed to the common good of his/her community. This alumna/us is recognized as a person who sets the pace for future generations of leaders and learners. Mid-career professionals are individuals with 10-20 years of experience who have been successful and influential during his/her career.
  • Honorary Alumni Award
    Honorary Alumni status is presented to a person who is not a graduate of UWM but who has earned this recognition and honor through deep loyalty, service and support of the University and the Alumni Association.
  • Graduate of the Last Decade Award
    This award honors alumni from each School or College who have achieved accomplishments of significant importance at an early stage of their careers (1-10 years after their undergraduate or graduate degree). The award is intended to recognize either professional accomplishment or service to the university by those who have graduated within the last decade.Both undergraduate AND graduate students from the last ten years are eligible for this award and the committee may select several from each category.
  • Community Service Award
    The Community Service Award honors those alumni who have generously contributed their time and talents for the enrichment of others and the betterment of their communities. This award bestows recognition on those individuals who have given of themselves in support of various civic, charitable, philanthropic and social welfare organizations.
  • Corporate Partner Award
    The Corporate Partner Award recognizes corporations or non-profit organizations which have a significant impact on the campus and/or on the lives of alumni and students by assisting in the advancement, growth and/or development of UWM.
  • Panther Pride Volunteer Award
    This award honors an alumni group or individual who has rendered outstanding voluntary service, loyalty and support to UWM and alumni in their local region or area of affinity. This honor can be awarded to an official UWMAA Chapter or to an individual program/event volunteer.
Submit a Nomination

Nominations for 2020 awards are now being accepted. A candidate may be nominated for more than one award category, and the selection committee reserves the right to grant an award for which the candidate has not been nominated. Deadline to submit a nomination is August 16, 2019.

Nominations Form

Event & Ticket Information

The annual Alumni Awards Evening is moving to spring – please save the new date! The event will take place at 6:00pm on Friday, April 3, 2020 at The Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee. Tickets will be available for purchase starting in early 2020.

Sponsorship Opportunities

Please join us by sponsoring this annual event that honors the most outstanding alumni from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. The event attracts more than 400 of the top UWM alumni in their fields as well as community and corporate partners. The evening is marketed to our alumni population of over 180,000 households, 60% of which reside in the Milwaukee metro area.

Sponsorship opportunities are limited. To reserve your sponsorship package or for additional information, please contact:

Amy Lensing Tate
Director of Alumni Advancement & Operations

2018 Award Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award
Paul Hemmer, BS Biological Sciences ’85
Professor of Medicine & Vice Chair, Educational Programs, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Department of Medicine

Distinguished Alumni Service Award
David Misky, BS Biological Sciences ’92
Assistant Executive Director – Redevelopment Authority of the City of Milwaukee

Distinguished Alumni Achievement Awards
Eugene Guszkowski, BS Architecture ’71, MArch Architecture ’73
Senior Principal / Design, AG Architecture

Lei Schlitz, MS Mechanical Engineering ’93, PhD Mechanical Engineering ’98
Executive Vice President, Food Equipment Segment, Illinois Tool Works

Corporate Partner Award

Community Service Awards
Jennifer Lehrke, BS Architectural Studies ’97, MArch Architecture ’99
President, Principal Architect & Historic Preservation Consultant, Legacy Architecture, Inc.

Harris Turer, BBA Marketing ‘88
Owner & CEO, Milwaukee Admirals

Honorary Alumni Award
K. Vairavan
Professor Emeritus, UWM College of Engineering and Applied Science

Panther Pride Volunteer Award
Meg Jansky, BBA Management Information Systems ’85
Vice President – Field Integration, Northwestern Mutual

Graduate of the Last Decade (Graduate)
Daniel Burkholder, MFA Dance ’11, MFA Performing Arts ‘11
Assistant Professor, Department of Dance, UWM Peck School of the Arts

Natalie Harlan, MHRLR Human Resources and Labor Relations ’08
Director, Milwaukee Lifecourse Initiative for Healthy Families

Eva Marie Lewis King, MS Biomedical Sciences ’15
DNA Laboratory Supervisor, Milwaukee Crime Laboratory

Angela Meyers, BA Sociology ’02, MLIS Library and Information Science ’08
Coordinator of Youth and Inclusive Services, Bridges Library System

Srikanth Pilla, PhD Mechanical Engineering ’09
Founding Director, Clemson Composites Center & Dean’s Faculty Fellow of Automotive Engineering, Clemson University

Nirmal Raja, MA Art ’10, MFA Art ’12
Award-winning Interdisciplinary Artist

Nicholas Robinson, BS Architectural Studies ’10, MArch Architecture ’12
Co-founder & Principal, DREAM Builders LLC

Mark Speltz, MA History ’09
Vice President & Senior Historian, Wells Fargo Wealth Management and Abbot Downing

Graduate of the Last Decade (Undergraduate)
Brent Aussprung, BSE Mechanical Engineering ’14
Patent Agent, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP

Jacarrie Carr, BS Community Education ’15
Founder, Jacarrie’s Kicks for Kids

Nathaniel Deans, Jr., BS Education & English ’11
English Teacher, Riverside University High School

Lauren Decker, BFA Music ’12
Ensemble Member, Ryan Opera Center at Lyric Opera of Chicago

Brian Firkus, BFA Music ’12, BFA Inter-Arts ’12
American Drag Queen, Stage Persona Trixie Mattel

Eric Miller (Posthumous), BA Mass Communication – Journalism ’06
Award-winning Journalist

Julia Robson, BS Biological Sciences ’12, BS Conservation Science ’12
Conservation Biologist, Waukesha County Parks & Land Use

Ed Sturkey, BBA Marketing ’07, BBA Finance ‘07
Portfolio Management Operations Supervisor – Vice President, Baird Equity Asset Management

View the 2018 Alumni Awards Evening news release which includes short biographies of winners.

Past Award Recipients