Distinguished Alumni Awards

Each year since 1963, the University of Iowa Alumni Association has presented accomplished alumni and friends with the association's highest honor—the Distinguished Alumni Award. To best recognize individuals selected for service or for achievement, awards are presented in six categories: Achievement, Service, Hickerson Recognition, Faculty/Staff, Young Alumni, and Friend of the University.


2017 Award recipients



Stephen Corbeil
Achievement 2017

Stephen E. Corbeil, 84MA, is an innovative leader of hospitals and health care systems who has charted a stable course through the industry’s turbulent changes. During his distinguished career—which began with ...

Phil Currie
Achievement 2017

Philip R. Currie, 62BA, brought the news to life for countless readers, thanks to his cutting-edge work in the field of journalism and mass communication. From his earliest days as editor of t ...

Steven Davis
Young Alumni 2017

Steven Davis, 01BS, 03MS, developed a groundbreaking software program for his master’s thesis that served as the foundation for a thriving company enabling advanced life science research. The journey began at t ...

Nancy Frank Hauserman
Faculty/Staff 2017

Nancy Frank Hauserman, 76JD, spent more than three decades at the University of Iowa as a leader and scholar who invested in worthy causes, created new opportunities, and helped change students’ lives.    The retired professor, ...

Dan Gable
Faculty/Staff 2017

Dan Gable is a gold medal-winning Olympic wrestler and former University of Iowa multinational championship head coach who has dramatically elevated American amateur wrestling by becoming the sport’s greatest ambassador. ...

Kevin Gruneich
Service 2017

Kevin Gruneich, 80BBA, was able to attend college thanks in part to others’ generosity, and now he uses his own Wall Street success to help hundreds of University of Iowa students pursue their dreams. Known as one of the top pu ...

James Hayes
Service 2017

James “Jim” P. Hayes, 64JD, has tirelessly pursued a vision to keep renowned American Gothic artist Grant Wood’s legacy alive at the University of Iowa—and far beyond. A highly regarded attorney and passionate arts adv ...

Nancy Humbles
Faculty/Staff 2017

Nancy J. Humbles, 97MA, has been a strong advocate for diversity and equity at the University of Iowa, and she helped forge new paths for students of color and other underrepresented groups on campus. As the founding creator an ...

Phillip Mayberry
Service 2017

Phillip O. Mayberry, 67BSIE, is a true Hawkeye, through and through, and he has channeled his passion for the University of Iowa into a lifetime of good works on its behalf. When Mayberry first arrived on the UI campus—followin ...

Vince Nelson
Friend of the University 2017

Vince Nelson is an enthusiastic University of Iowa champion who shared the Hawkeye spirit with countless alumni and friends during his 26 years at the helm of the UI Alumni Association (UIAA). Under his leadership, the UIAA thr ...

Margaret O'Connor Stessman
Achievement 2017

Margaret “Peg” O’Connor Stessman, 84BS 12MBA, has used her nursing skills and hard-won business acumen to create a company that combats fraud and waste within the Medicare and Medicaid system. The savvy entrepr ...

V.C. Patel
Faculty/Staff 2017

V.C. Patel is a world-renowned engineering professor who profoundly influenced the field of fluid mechanics—and the lives of his University of Iowa students. Born in Kenya and educated at London and Cambridge Universities, Pate ...

Rosebud Roberts
Achievement 2017

Rosebud Roberts, 90MS, is a highly regarded scientist whose pioneering research in the field of dementia and mild cognitive impairment could benefit millions worldwide who suffer from such conditions. The professor of epidemio ...

Doug True
Faculty/Staff 2017

Doug True, 71BS, has a head for numbers and a steady hand, and he used these talents to expertly guide the University of Iowa for 27 years—most notably through the devastating flood of 2008. Throughout his exceptional career, T ...

Thomas Wickham Jr.
Service 2017

Thomas J. Wickham Jr., 90BA, 94JD, is only the fifth person since 1928 to sit to the right of the Speaker of the House and advise lawmakers on procedural matters and precedent when the United States House of Representa ...