Screen readers: Two navigational links to follow.Skip to site navigation.Skip to page content.
The University of Iowa News Services
The University of Iowa News Services Home News Releases UI in the News Subscribe to UI News Contact Us

University of Iowa News Release


Nov. 6, 2006

UI To Name Catalyst Award Recipients At Nov. 16 Reception

The University of Iowa Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity invites the campus community to celebrate distinctive and innovative diversity contributions at the 2006 Catalyst Award Reception from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Nov. 16 in the Wayne Richey Ballroom of the Iowa Memorial Union.

Individual Catalyst Award recipients this year are Judie Hermsen, UI Human Resources, and Vanessa Shelton, School of Journalism and Mass Communication in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The Individual Student Award recipient is Amina Mahmood, a Pakistani-American from upstate New York and fifth-year doctoral student in the UI College of Education's Counseling Psychology program. And the Student Organization Award recipient is Partners for Success, a mentoring program coordinated by the Student National Medical Association and dedicated to increasing the level of minority student recruitment, admissions and retention in the UI's Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine.

The recipients will be honored with a plaque and $500 award.

Following remarks from Provost Michael J. Hogan, Alfred Ramirez, executive director of Diversity Focus in Cedar Rapids, will deliver a keynote address titled "From Vision to Reality: Developing Diverse & Inclusive Communities."

Diversity Focus is a new organization in the Cedar Rapids-Iowa City corridor area that helps foster new programs and creates better multi-cultural awareness in the corridor area. Diversity Focus serves as a national model of a genuine concern, response, and partnership between Business, Government, Education, and Community.

Ramirez has held several White House appointments during the Clinton Administration. He was named Special Assistant to the President and Associate Director in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel. He later served as Senior Advisor at the Corporation for National Service and Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans.

He has been recognized throughout the country for his commitment to community and national development. He has served on several local boards and his areas of expertise include leadership, development, diversity and multiculturalism, communication, strategic planning, education and public policy. Despite being new to the Cedar Rapids-Iowa City community, he has been sought after to speak about his vision for enhancing the "corridor" inclusion activities.

The event is supported by the following colleges and departments: The Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity; African American Council; Admissions; Athletics; Belin-Blank Center for Gifted Education; Colleges of Business, Dentistry, Education, Engineering, Law, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, and Public Health; Faculty Senate; Finance and Operations; Human Resources; Office of the President; Office of the Provost; Office of Student Financial Aid; Office of the Vice President for Research; Office of the Vice President for Student Services; School of Social Work; Hospital Administration; UIHC Human Resources; UI Staff Council; University Counseling Service; Women in Science and Engineering; and the Women's Resource and Action Center.

For more information, contact the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity at 319-335-0705.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACTS: Program: Jennifer Modestou, 319-335-0705,; Media: Stephen J. Pradarelli, 319-384-0007,