February 7, 2014

SVSU bestows alumni awards

Saginaw Valley State University honored six of its leading graduates and one student about to graduate during its Alumni Celebration Friday, Feb. 7 at 5:45 p.m. in Curtiss Hall’s banquet rooms.

By J.J. Boehm

Saginaw Valley State University honored six of its leading graduates and one student about to graduate during its Alumni Celebration Friday, Feb. 7 at 5:45 p.m. in Curtiss Hall’s banquet rooms.

The SVSU Alumni Association selected five alumni – one from each college – to receive the Distinguished Alumni awards. The association also has selected recipients of the Young Alumni Award and Future Alumni Award, given to outstanding individuals who recently graduated or who soon will earn their degrees.

Here are the individuals who were honored:

Scott Carmona, the distinguished alumnus for the College of Science, Engineering and Technology, earned his bachelor’s degree in 1981. Carmona has distinguished himself as a successful business leader, savvy developer and visionary community leader. He is the owner and chief executive officer of Sunrise National Distributors, Inc., a national distributor of automotive aftermarket products. He serves on SVSU’s Board of Control and Foundation Board.

Catherine Gatewood, the distinguished alumna for the College of Education, earned her bachelor’s degree in secondary education/history in 1995. She has spent her career in education, serving today as vice president of Academic Affairs for Bay College in Escanaba. Prior to joining Bay College, she served as vice president of Academic and Student Affairs for Anoka Technical College in Anoka, Minn. She began her career teaching American history at Meridian High School in Sanford.

Pamela Forbus, the distinguished alumna for the College of Business and Management, earned her Bachelor of Business Administration in 1987. Since 2007, Forbus has led a team of more than 30 strategy, analytics and market insight professionals who have an influence on the growth agenda at Frito-Lay. After earning her SVSU degree, she began a 12-year account service and planning career in the advertising agency industry with Y&R, Chiat/Day, WB Doner and Campbell-Ewald.

Dawn Klida, the distinguished alumna for the College of Arts and Behavioral Sciences, earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1990. In 1997, she was a founding partner in the law firm Skinner, Wilderboer & Klida. In 2010, she was appointed by Gov. Jennifer Granholm to the 74th District Court, where she is the presiding sobriety court judge. She also is a member of the Bay Area Chamber of Commerce.

Janice Penney, the distinguished alumna for the Crystal M. Lange College of Health and Human Services, earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing in 1986 and a master’s degree in nursing in 1995. Penney was recently named chief nursing officer of MidMichigan Health and vice president and chief nursing officer of MidMichigan Medical Center-Midland. Throughout her career, she has held many leadership roles, including serving as the strategic business unit leader for cardiovascular services and nursing director at MidMichigan Medical Center-Midland.

Jamie Jager, the Young Alumni Award recipient, earned her bachelor’s degree in English in 2011. Following graduation, she worked at a local nonprofit organization for two years before joining Saginaw’s New Hope Valley Assisted Living as the deputy director in late 2013. She was a member of SVSU’s prestigious Roberts Fellowship, a leadership development program, in 2010.

Jadrianna Sobczak is SVSU’s Future Alumni Award winner. Expected to graduate in May with a bachelor’s in exercise science, Sobczak has immersed herself in the college experience. Last spring, she travelled to Guangzhou, China, where she worked in a hospital on the campus of Jinan University, learning the differences between the health care systems of the United States and China. A native of Bad Axe, Sobczak also serves as a peer advisor, assisting fellow students with their academic pursuits.

For more information on the Alumni Celebration, visit the Alumni Association website at http://alumni.svsu.edu/2014-celebration.