COLUMBIA, Mo. – Each year, the University of Missouri Alliance of Alumni Associations and Extension awards the Presidential Citation Award for outstanding service to the university and its four campuses. The Alliance selects one person from each campus and Extension, and the UM president selects recipients on behalf of the system.
The 2013 honorees were recognized on Friday, Nov. 15, at the annual Alliance Awards Dinner in Columbia.
State Senator Dan Brown – Outstanding Service to the University of Missouri System
Sen. Brown is a faithful ally for the university, not only as a graduate of MU, but also as the senator representing the Missouri S&T campus. He supports higher education through his membership on both the Senate Appropriations and Senate Education committees. In 2012, he was instrumental in supporting and protecting the university’s position on the higher education funding formula bill.
Blake Hurst – Outstanding Service to the University of Missouri System
As president of the Missouri Farm Bureau Federation, Blake Hurst guides an organization with strong and long-standing ties to the University of Missouri. The Farm Bureau has partnered with the university on a number of legislative issues, most recently, working closely with the system on the successful passage of Extension districting legislation.
Don Flora – Outstanding Service to the University of Missouri
Don Flora has been an active member and leader on the Alumni Alliance, the Engineering Dean’s Advisory Council, and as a Mizzou Advocate. Flora received a Missouri Honor Award for Distinguished Service in Engineering in 2010 and was inducted into the MU College of Engineering’s Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering Hall of Fame in 2008.
Dr. Russell Tabata – Outstanding Service to the University of Missouri – Kansas City
Dr. Russell Tabata has led the UMKC Dental School’s Hawaiian alumni group for more than 15 years. He dedicates countless hours to recruiting, interviewing and recommending prospective Hawaiian dental students. Tabata cultivates new generations of Hawaiian dentists with a passion for their profession and a love of service for UMKC.
Gary Forsee – Outstanding Service to the Missouri University of Science and Technology
Gary Forsee served Missouri S&T as both president of the Board of Trustees and chairman of the Advancing Excellence campaign. In 2011, he was honored by S&T as one of 28 Alumni of Influence. Forsee served the University of Missouri as president from 2008-2011 focusing on making college affordable for all students and increasing academic concentration in the science, technology, engineering and math fields.
Joan Bray – Outstanding Service to the University of Missouri – St. Louis
Throughout her legislative career, Joan Bray was a tireless advocate for the University of Missouri, especially the University of Missouri-St. Louis. With Bray’s strong support, the legislature funded the Blanche Touhill Performing Arts Center, the campus’ signature building. Bray serves on the UMSL Chancellor’s Council, where she continues to be a passionate and committed participant in the life of the university.
State Representative Bill Reiboldt – Outstanding Service to the University of Missouri Extension
As vice chair of the House Agricultural Policy Committee in 2012 and chair of the committee in 2013, Rep. Bill Reiboldt played a critical role in securing passage of the Extension districting legislation. Reiboldt actively worked to gain support for the measure and helped educate legislative members about the importance of the bill and Extension programming overall.
The Alliance is comprised of representatives from each campus and University of Missouri Extension. The Alliance serves as a supportive and unified voice of the UM System in legislative advocacy, and facilitates the interchange of ideas and information between the UM System and the campus alumni associations and Extension.
The four-campus University of Missouri System is one of the nation’s largest public research university systems with more than 75,000 students and nearly a half million alumni worldwide.