This year, the WSU Alumni Association had tremendous support from its volunteers, especially those serving as president, members of the board of directors, chapter leaders, and Alliance representatives. In keeping with a tradition established in 1999, the WSUAA at its spring 2010 board meeting recognized eight outstanding alumni with Alumni Ambassador Awards.

As WSUAA president this past year, Gina Meyers ’85 led the effort to approve new association bylaws. But her work as president is just one piece of the time and attention she’s offered WSU over the years. The Bellevue resident has also found time in her busy schedule as a director of finance to serve on the WSUAA Board of Directors and to be King County Chapter president. Her efforts for WSU reach beyond the association; she also serves on the College of Business National Advisory Board, the WSU Foundation Board of Governors, and the Celebration of Washington Wine event planning committee.

Though he lives 800 miles from Pullman near Walnut Creek, California, Wayne Steffen ’76 has found all kinds of ways to stay connected to WSU. During his three years as the Northern California Chapter President, he tripled the number of alumni events held around the Bay Area. He planned pre-game rallies for most Cougars sports team events, the Nor-Cal alumni golf tournament, wine tastings, and CAST student recruitment luncheons. A few of his more memorable activities included welcome receptions for incoming freshmen, and annual outings to performances of Wicked in San Francisco.

For the past two years Eva Navarijo ’04 has served as La Alianza Chapter President and helped recruit alumni of color who could mentor and engage with students—with the overriding goal of improving retention rates and ensuring a positive WSU education experience. Prior to her work with La Alianza, Eva served on the WSUAA Board of Directors for three years.


The other ambassadors included:

Benine McDonnell ’74 who served three years as the South Central Washington Chapter president.

Joe Pitzer ’90 who has had various one-year appointments as interim Palouse Chapter president.

Leslie Archer ’98 who served three years as King County Chapter president and as a Board of Directors member.

Matt Eastman ’03 who served three years as North Central Washington Chapter president.

Janeen Heath ’07 who served three years as Washington, D.C., Chapter president.

In 1970, the WSUAA created the Alumni Achievement Award for those who have made significant contributions to their professions, their communities, the world, and WSU. Fewer than 500 alumni have received this honor. This year, the Alumni Association recognized the following people for the prestige they bring to their alma mater:

Rhoda L. Altom, ’80, Construction Management

Steve W. Epperson, ’76 & ’77, Business Administration and Physical Education

H. Eugene Forrester, ’51, Agriculture and Education

Robert D. Fukai, ’72, Accounting and Business Administration

Thomas Graedel, ’60, Chemical Engineering

Keith Lincoln, ’61, Physical Education

Larry Nielson, ’76, Psychology

Robert J. Palmquist, ’80 & ’82, Criminal Justice

John N. Terrey, ’65, Education

Edwin M. Tingstad, ’88, History

Leslie V. Rowe, ’70, Foreign Languages and Literature

Steven L. VanAusdle, ’66 & ’68, Agriculture

Joe P. Zeeben, ’58 & ’60, Mechanical Engineering

For a complete list of honorees and for more information about all WSUAA awards visit or call1-800-258-6978.