Colorado State Programs & People

2007 Distinguished Alumni

Published February 2007

Alumni Association annual Distinguished Alumni Awards program exists to recognize CSU alumni and friends who have distinguished themselves professionally, brought honor to the University and have made significant contributions of time and/or philanthropy to the university and/or their community.>

CSU Alumni Association logo

The 2007 awards were presented on Saturday, February 10 during a ceremony at the Fort Collins Hilton. Congratulations to this year's 16 honorees and distinguished Colorado State University alumni.

William E. Morgan Alumni Achievement Award

Keli S. McGregor,'84, B.S. Biological Sciences

Photo of Keli S. McGregor, '84
President/CEO, Colorado Rockies Baseball Team

A 1984 graduate of Colorado State University, Keli McGregor was twice named an All-American tight end. He was a member of the All Century team, and in the fall of 1997, was inducted into the Colorado State University Hall of Fame.

McGregor continued his playing career, taking his services to the NFL with the Denver Broncos, Seattle Seahawks, and Indianapolis Colts. He then served as associate athletic director at the University of Arkansas from 1989 through 1993. During his tenure at the University of Arkansas, the athletic department won 11 national championships in four different sports.

McGregor currently serves as president for the Colorado Rockies Baseball Club. Through his leadership, the Rockies offer a number of programs teaching the sport of baseball to youth in the region. His mission is for the Rockies to become leaders of the baseball dream in Colorado, and views the caretaking of Coors Field as vital to economic health of Colorado.

In addition to his recognition as an outstanding executive of major league baseball, McGregor has been instrumental in founding the Michael McMorris Center for Cystic Fibrosis at Denver's Children's Hospital and the Reaching Out to Youth (ROY) Foundation. Other community service includes the President's Council at Colorado State University, Metro Denver Sports Commission Advisory Board, and the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce. In addition, Governor Bill Owens presented McGregor with an appointment to serve on the Colorado Commission on Higher Education.

Nominated by E. Michael Rosser, '64.

Charles A. Lory Public Service Award

Larry Kendall, Friend of CSU

Photo of Larry M. Kendall
Former Chairman of The Group, Inc. Real Estate

Larry Kendall has been engaged in the real estate business for over 30 years. Holding a master's in business administration, he is chairman and one of the founding partners of The Group, Inc., a real estate firm owned equally by its sales associates. In 2002, Realtor Magazine named The Group, Inc. "the Most Productive Real Estate Company in the United States," according to ranking by the National Association of Realtors.

In addition to serving as past chairman of Colorado State University's Development Council, Kendall provided expertise during the expansion of CSU's research complex that now houses federal, state, and university research facilities. He serves on President Penley's strategic planning teams and is a member of the College of Business Global Leadership Council.

Kendall's professional accolades include being named "Realtor of the Year" by the Fort Collins Board of Realtors, "Entrepreneur of the Year" by Fort Collins Incorporated, and "Business Person of the Year" by Business World Magazine. In 1997, Kendall received the prestigious "Collins Award" for his leadership and service to the Fort Collins community. Also very active in his community, Kendall has served on numerous boards and committees to include the United Way Board of Directors, Fort Collins Chamber of Commerce, and the Larimer County Open Lands Board.

Nominated by the College of Business.

Jim and Nadine Henry Award

Kathleen Henry, '70, B.S. Social Science

Photo of Kathleen Henry, '70
President/CEO, Colorado State University Foundation

A third generation Colorado native, Kathleen Henry completed her degree from the College of Liberal Arts in 1970. Upon graduation, Henry became a commercial banker with United Banks of Colorado for 11 years, then served a short term at Boettcher and Company, an investment banking firm.

In 1982, Henry was recruited by her alma mater and returned to Colorado State University to become vice president of the Colorado State University Research Foundation (CSURF). Kathleen became president of CSURF in 1988 and was additionally appointed president of Colorado State University Foundation (CSUF) in 1990. She remains the president of both organizations.

Whether it is a community, Foundation, University, athletics, charity, or alumni event, Henry is there. She has served on numerous regional boards to include the Colorado State Obligation Bond Authority, Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce, Fort Collins Symphony Orchestra, Larimer County Humane Society, and many others.

In addition, Henry is an avid supporter of CSU athletics. She is a founding member of the Touchdown Club, and is a member of the Ram Club and Ram's Horn Club. Beginning in 1988, Henry has served on the Colorado State University Alumni Association Board of Directors, and is a Life Member of the CSU Alumni Association.

Nominated by the Department of Athletics.

Albert C. Yates Student Leadership Award

Justin Dodsworth, '07, B.S. Agricultural Business, Animal Science, Soil & Crop Science

Photo of Justin Dodsworth, '07

Justin Dodsworth will graduate May 2007 with a triple major from the College of Agriculture. Graduating with a 3.99 GPA, Dodsworth clearly exhibits pride in excellence and maintaining academic distinction.

In addition to completing his college education in four years, Dodsworth has contributed his leadership talent to several campus activities including the Agronomy Club, the Agribusiness Club, Block and Bridle, and Campus Crusade for Christ. Throughout his college career, Dodsworth has demonstrated his commitment to make a difference at Colorado State University.

Dodsworth is also a member of Gamma Sigma Delta, the Agricultural Honor Society. He plays intramural basketball and volleyball. Consistently on the Dean's List, Dodsworth has also been named Outstanding Sophomore and Outstanding Senior in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Outstanding Junior in the Department of Animal Sciences. Justin has received numerous scholarships throughout his four years at Colorado State University. He plans a career in agriculture and animal sciences.

Nominated by William Wailes, Ph.D., '69 and Gary Peterson, Ph.D.

Graduate of the Last Decade (GOLD) Award

Joel Cantalamessa, '95, B.A. Tech Journalism

Photo of Joel C. Cantalamessa, '95
Quality Control Manager, Starz Entertainment Group and Founder of

After graduating from Colorado State University in 1995, Joel Cantalamessa combined his love for writing with his passion for the Rams as a freelance sports reporter for the Fort Collins Coloradoan. Later, he became the assistant editor of Injection Molding Magazine in Denver.

Cantalamessa never ventured far from the "Ram family." His vision was to create a way for alumni and friends of the University to keep in touch with each other and share their Ram pride. In 2000, he founded, a Web site dedicated to news coverage of Colorado State University athletics.

The founding of RamNation was only the beginning of Cantalamessa's involvement with Colorado State University athletics. In 2001 he became a volunteer for the annual Ram Club membership drive, the funding source of scholarships for Ram student-athletes, and has four times been one of the top three fundraisers for the Athletic Department. Cantalamessa has also served as the Secretary and Vice President for the Ram Club Board of Directors where he has been instrumental in reintroducing the Colorado State University Denver Athletic Leadership Committee.

Cantalamessa currently serves as quality control manager for Startz Entertainment Group, and also as President of The Black Diamond Group, LLC, a marketing and advertising company in Parker, Colorado. One of the clients of The Black Diamond Group, LLC is the Mountain West Conference, of which Colorado State University is a part. Cantalamessa works with the Mountain West Conference to develop e-mail marketing campaigns, storyboards, copy and animation work, which is distributed to tens of thousands of alumni and fans of each member institution.

Nominated by CSU Athletic Department.

Distinguished Faculty Award

Alicia Skinner Cook, Ph.D.

Photo of Alicia Skinner Cook, Ph.D.
Professor of Human Development and Family Studies, College of Applied Human Sciences

Alicia Skinner Cook has served Colorado State University as teacher, collaborator, colleague and friend. In her 30 year career with the University she has consistently demonstrated excellence in teaching, research, and service.

Much of Dr. Cook's career has focused on advancements in the field of grief and loss. She has co-authored several publications on the subject including Dying and Grieving: Lifespan and Family Perspectives as well as Helping the Bereaved: Therapeutic Interventions for Children, Adolescents and Adults.

Cook has brought international recognition to Colorado State University's efforts in global education and enhanced the institutional reputation for quality in instruction and curriculum development. In 1991, Cook was honored by the Hastings Center for Biomedical Ethics, and in 1998 she received the College of Applied Human Sciences Research Scholar Award. Cook was additionally selected as the 2005 recipient of the prestigious Michael P. Malone International Leadership Award.

In addition to teaching and research, Cook has successfully held several administrative roles including Associate Dean of the Graduate School, Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs, Director of International Programs and the Department Head of Human Development and Family Studies. Last year she created a new course in human development entitled, "Youth and Families in a Global Context."

Currently, Cook serves as a grant reviewer for the United States Office of Education in the areas of Fullbright Group Projects Abroad Grants, Undergraduate Studies, and Foreign Language Programs.

Nominated by Dean April Mason.

Distinguished Athletic Award

CSU Spirit Committee - "Official home tailgate grillers"

Photo of tent and CSU Spirit trailer.

In 1982 five boosters of the Colorado State University football program arranged to cook hamburgers and hotdogs at Hughes Stadium for the parents of the football players. This regular home game event originally provided team parents the opportunity to meet each other and create support and spirit for the team.

Formalized as The Spirit Committee, the group has grown from five to a membership of close to 50. Over the past 24 years, Spirit Committee members each volunteer 50-60 hours pear year on Spirit Committee activities.

Not only has their volunteer base expanded, but so also has the dedication and support of the Spirit Committee to CSU Athletics. The Spirit Committee serves between 200-800 community members, university members and alumni at each home football game. In addition, they prepare meals for several of the other CSU athletic teams. Through their efforts, the Committee has raised money for various improvements at Hughes Stadium, and to support the Colorado State University cheerleading and marching band programs.

The Spirit Committee has created, and annually awards, the Larry LaSasso Spirit Award and the Student Spirit Award and positively represents the spirit of Colorado State University community-wide.

Nominated by Douglas W. Johnson, '93.

Distinguished Cooperative Extension Award

Curtis J. Mucklow, '83, B.S. Animal Sciences; '85, MAGR Agricultural Sciences

Photo of Curtis J. Mucklow, '83, '85
Extension Agent, Routt County

Following his graduation from Colorado State University, Curtis (C.J.) Mucklow began his 20 year career with the Colorado State University Cooperative Extension.

After serving as an Extension Agent for Elbert County, Mucklow was named director and agricultural agent for the Routt County Cooperative Extension Service in 1989.

Throughout his tenure with the CSU Cooperative Extension Service, Mucklow has developed and coordinated several publications, coordinated programs for river restoration and management of insect infestation, and built partnerships with government entities, agricultural producers, conservation organizations, and resort economy businesses.

Mucklow has earned numerous awards, including the National Winner for Excellence from the National County Agricultural Agents Association and the Colorado County Agents Association Distinguished Service Award. In addition, he has been recognized by the U.S. Forest Service for dedication and expertise in providing information about bark beetle infestation.

Mucklow's involvement in committees and boards includes membership in the Society for Range Management, Colorado Cattlemen's Association, and Steamboat Springs Rotary Club, to name a few. He is also a member of the CSU Alumni Association and has staged several successful student recruitment programs for CSU.

Nominated by Deborah Alpe.

College of Agricultural Sciences Honor Alumnus Award

Jerold L. Harris, '63, B.S. Agricultural Business

Photo of Jerold L. Harris, '63
President/CEO, U.S. Ag Bank-FCS of Central Kansas

Jerold Harris exemplifies the statement that "there is no limit to progress when people work together." Throughout his career, Harris has demonstrated a positive leadership style based on cooperation, mutual respect and trust. After receiving a degree from Colorado State University in Agricultural Business, he began his career as a loan officer with the Federal Land Bank of Wichita. He became assistant vice president in 1974, responsible for seven federal land bank associations in Colorado. In 1976, Mr. Harris was named vice president and secretary.

In 1986, Harris was chosen as the chief executive officer of the Ninth District Federal Land Bank and Production Credit Associations, entities formed from a merger of 40 farm credit associations. In March of 1991, Harris returned to the institution where he began his career when he was named president and chief executive officer of the Farm Credit Bank of Wichita. When the Western Farm Credit Bank merged with the Farm Credit Bank of Wichita in January 2002, Harris was named as president and chief executive officer, combining operations to form the U.S. AgBank, FCB in 2003. Harris' work has been in tandem with Colorado State University's outreach and research efforts. His creativity and judgment have made life better for many western farmers and ranchers during a period of significant change.

Harris has continued his contact with both the Department of Agricultural Business and the general University over the years. In appreciation of his career, and in recognition of his affinity for CSU, the U.S. AgBank board has recommended the establishment of the Jerold L. Harris Scholarship to provide significant financial support for students who wish to pursue agricultural finance as a career.

Nominated by Stephen Davies, Ph.D.

College of Applied Human Sciences Honor Alumna Award

Winnie Willcox, '73, B.S. Textiles and Clothing

Photo of Winnifred A. Willcox, '73
Founder, Vice President of Liknon Inc.

As a student, Winnie Willcox arrived at Colorado State University with a goal of earning a degree in Textiles and Clothing and with an aspiration to one day work for Dayton Hudson (now known as the Target Corporation).

Throughout her 15 year career as a merchandise executive with the Target Corporation, Willcox has pioneered several innovative and successful retail marketing campaigns. Additionally, she developed and implemented aggressive strategic business plans and globally marketed both branded and private label products in ten different merchandising categories.

With 30 years of entrepreneurship and retail and merchandising experience, Willcox has a long track record of achievements in building companies, managing operations and providing leadership for client-driven entrepreneurs. She has served as the Vice President of Business Development for the U.S. operations of a successful Japanese e-commerce payment infrastructure business.

Willcox also led the Retail Center of Excellence at Gemini Consulting, a $500 million global management consultancy, providing leadership to her clients' senior management and project teams throughout the strategic development, piloting and national launch of three major brands.

Currently, Willcox is the founder, vice president and board member of Liknon Inc., a unique consulting firm for emerging businesses, accelerating new business opportunities in mainstream and alternative markets within the U.S. and Asia. She is also president and founder of her latest business venture, Wine Innovations, LLC, spending much of her time in product development and marketing ReServe, a modular wine preservation system.

Willcox's connection to CSU is threaded into her professional and personal interests. She served as the first Executive in Residence in the Department of Design and Merchandising, which brings industry leaders to campus to share their knowledge and experience with students and faculty. Willcox actively seeks to enhance the current internship program and looks forward to a long-term collaborative relationship with the department.

Nominated by Dean April Mason.

College of Business Honor Alumnus Award

Robert Hottman, '77, B.S. Accounting

Photo of Robert B. Hottman, '77
CEO, Ehrhardt Keefe Steiner & Hottman PC

Robert Hottman graduated from the College of Business in 1977 with a degree in accounting and began his career in the field of accounting, within the accommodations and hospitality industry.

Hottman is currently the CEO of the accounting and consulting firm of Ehrhardt, Keefe, Steiner & Hottman PC where he has provided accounting and consulting services for individuals, closely-held businesses and public companies for 30 years.

During his career at EKS&H, Hottman received the Innovative Firm Leader Award in 2002 in recognition of his integrity, courage to do what is right, respect for his co-workers, uncompromising ethics, and his passion for his people. The result of these long-standing qualities culminated in the firm being awarded the Denver Business Journal's 2004 "Best Places to Work."

Hottman is actively involved in his community, serving on a number of community and civic volunteer boards. Additionally, he remains involved with the College of Business, accepting an appointment to the College of Business Global Leadership Council, and actively engages in programs, recruiting and service to the Accounting Department. Through his financial generosity, the College of Business has enjoyed an increased opportunity to provide students with scholarships and training in entrepreneurship.

Nominated by Dean Ajay Menon.

College of Engineering Honor Alumnus Award

Eric Wilkinson, '73, B.S. Civil Engineering

Photo of Eric W. Wilkinson, '73
General Manager, Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District

After completing his degree at Colorado State University, Eric Wilkinson has demonstrated himself to be a superior leader in the field of water conservation and management, and a tireless proponent of water conservation efforts throughout the State of Colorado.

Following graduation, Wilkinson held positions of increasing responsibility during his more than ten years with the Colorado Division of Water Resources. While there Wilkinson co-authored the book titled The Colorado Dam Safety Manual.

Wilkinson served as a water resource engineer for the City of Greeley, Water and Sewer Department. In 1987, he began his career with the Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District, and in 1994 was appointed general manager.

In 1999, Wilkinson was the recipient of the Colorado State University College of Engineering Public Service Award. In 2004, he won the General Palmer Award for Outstanding Engineer in Industry from the American Council of Engineering Companies of Colorado. Wilkinson presents lectures to CSU engineering students and has consulted with the CSU Cooperative Extension to develop class curriculum.

Wilkinson is a member of numerous committees and boards, including the Colorado Water Congress, the Platte River Project, Colorado River Advisory Council, Colorado Water Conservation Board, the West Foundation, South Platte Water Related Activities Project (SPWRAP), and South Platte Basin Roundtable Interbasin Compact Committee. In March of 2000, the governor of Colorado appointed Mr. Wilkinson the South Platte Basin representative on the Colorado Water Conservation Board.

Nominated by C. Michael Applegate,'74.

College of Liberal Arts Honor Alumnus Award

Michael Nosler, '69, B.A. History and teacher certification

Photo of Michael D. Nosler, '69
Attorney, Rothgerber, Johnson & Lyons LLP

Michael Nosler is a 1969 graduate of the College of Liberal Arts and has been practicing law for over 30 years. For 27 of those years he has been at Rothgerber, Johnson, & Lyons in the Labor and Employment Practices Group, where he is the leader of the Employment Law Division and the managing partner for the firm. He successfully manages a firm of 75 lawyers and 162 employees with multiple office locations. Due to his leadership, the Denver Business Journal has voted Rothgerber, Johnson, & Lyons one of the "Best Places to Work" in Denver.

Throughout his career, Nosler has been committed to promoting diversity in the law profession. In 2001, he encouraged the creation of the Diversity in Law Program at Colorado State University. This program includes law and ethnicity courses to encourage minority students to pursue a career in criminal justice or law. In addition to helping format this successful program within the College of Liberal Arts, Mr. Nosler also persuaded Rothgerber, Johnson, & Lyons to provide scholarship funds for up to eight students of diverse ethnic backgrounds who are considering careers in law or criminal justice.

As a fourth generation Coloradan, Nosler has very deep roots in his community. Through his work with Rothgerber, Johnson, & Lyons, he has had the opportunity to be a member of the University Club of Denver, the Denver Economic Club and the Board of Governors for the Denver Economic Development Corporation. Nosler is also an advocate for the chronically mentally ill, disabled and elderly populations in the state of Colorado. He is currently the vice president of Senior Housing Options, an organization that provides services and housing to disabled persons. In conjunction with his work Senior Options, Nosler has been elected to the Board of Directors for the Legal Center for Persons with Disabilities and the Aged.

Nominated by Dean Ann Gill.

Warner College of Natural Resources Honor Alumnus Award

John T. Goodier, '59, B.S. Geology

Photo of John T. Goodier, '59
Owner, Focal Point

John Goodier served in the Air Force during the Korean War before coming to study at Colorado State University. Goodier graduated from Colorado State in 1959 with a bachelor's in Geology.

Prior to returning to Wyoming, Goodier worked for the Extension Service on a ground water project near Strasburg, Colorado and was employed by the Texas Board of Engineers to perform a ground water study in West Central Texas. Following that, Goodier was the Assistant Chief of Water Development for the Wyoming Natural Resources Board and the Chief of Mineral Development for the state of Wyoming.

During his time with the state of Wyoming, Goodier managed, preserved, and enhanced Wyoming's mineral resources. He retired from the state of Wyoming in 1987 and now owns a small business, Focal Point, which represents several artists and publishes a line of fine art note cards.

Goodier is a life member of the Alumni Association and served on the Alumni Association Board of Directors for six years. In addition to other activities, Goodier volunteers his time and knowledge as a member of the Department of Geosciences Advisory Council at CSU and is the current Chairman of Cheyenne Art in Public Places.

Nominated by Interim Dean Ed Redente

College of Natural Sciences Honor Alumnus Award

Peter I. Wold, '71, B.S. Zoology

Photo of Peter I. Wold, '71
President & Co-owner, Wold Oil Properties, Inc.

A Wyoming native, Peter Wold received his bachelor of science in Zoology from Colorado State University in 1971. Since graduation, he has enjoyed a long and diverse career.

Wold is currently the president and co-owner of Wold Oil Properties, Inc., an exploration and production company with properties located primarily in the Rocky Mountain states. In addition, he is the vice president of Wold Trona Company, which develops new technology to produce soda ash from naturally occurring trona found in southwest Wyoming. Wold is also the vice president of Wold Talc Company, the single largest talc mine in the United States.

Wold served in the Wyoming State House of Representatives from 1989-1992 (on the Education and Revenue Committees), and two terms on the Executive Committee of the Petroleum Association of Wyoming. He completed two terms on the Board of Directors of the Denver Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank, Kansas City District. In February of 2005, Mr. Wold was appointed by Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal to serve a three-year term on the newly created Enhanced and Improved Oil Recovery Institute.

Many organizations have benefited from Mr. Wold's volunteer service including the National Advisory Board, School of Environment and Natural Resources, University of Wyoming, the Board of Mutual Funds of OppenheimerFunds, Inc. He has received numerous honors and distinctions for his citizenship and community service.

Nominated by Dean Rick Miranda.

College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences Honor Alumnus Award

F. Ward Whicker, '62, B.S. Chemistry; '65, Ph.D. Radiology and Radiation Biology

Photo of F. Ward Whicker, '62, '65
Professor in CSU Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences

T. E. Hakonson, Ph.D., former leader of the Environmental Sciences Group at Los Alamos National Laboratory stated, "I could summarize Dr. F. Ward Whicker's scientific and educational contributions in one sentence, 'He has made a significant difference.'"

In addition to earning two degrees from Colorado State University, Whicker has a served the university through a distinguished career in teaching, research and service spanning more than 40 years. Whicker was instrumental in the establishment of the Department of Radiological Health Sciences, serving as department head for five years. A professor in the Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences since 1965, Whicker has co-authored approximately 170 publications, built and lead the Radioecology Program and advised and mentored over 150 students.

Whicker is widely viewed as the "father" of radioecology, the field encompassing the fate and effects of radioactivity in the environment. He continues as a dynamic and productive leader in that field locally, nationally and internationally.

Whicker has excelled in teaching, research and service and has brought international recognition, substantial funding and excellent students to Colorado State University through his radioecology program. In 1991 he was awarded the prestigious E.O. Lawrence Award, established by President Dwight D. Eisenhower for recognition of "exceptional contributions…including the science and technology of nuclear, atomic, molecular and particle interactions; and their effects." Whicker's scientific achievements have been recognized by the National Council on Radiation Protection, the International Commission on Radiological Protection and the National Academy of Sciences.

Nominated by John Zimbrick, Ph.D.

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