Irvine, Calif., Dec. 13, 2016 — The University of California, Irvine Alumni Association will bestow its highest honor, the Lauds & Laurels Extraordinarius award, upon Gary Singer ’74, senior adviser to RSI Holding and RSI Development and a member of the UCI Foundation’s board of trustees, for his commitment and extraordinary level of support to UCI.
After earning a J.D. at Loyola Marymount University, Singer practiced corporate, business and securities law throughout his career, retiring as managing partner of O’Melveny & Myers LLP in 2013. Giving to UCI since 1979, he is or has been a member of the Chancellor’s Club; the Dean’s Leadership Society at the School of Social Sciences; the Board of Visitors and the Dean’s Executive Board at the School of Law; the UCI Alumni Association’s board of directors; and the UCI Foundation’s board of trustees. In addition, he’s an avid supporter of UCI athletics and the UCI Medal. Singer will be recognized at the 47th annual Lauds & Laurels awards ceremony on March 30.
Other 2017 honorees include Anthony James ’73, Ph.D. ’79, who’ll receive the Outstanding Faculty Achievement award. The Donald Bren Professor of Microbiology & Molecular Genetics and Molecular Biology & Biochemistry, James is a world-renowned scientist who has engineered flightless female mosquitoes and those resistant to malaria and dengue. His work marks global progress toward the control and eventual eradication of these diseases as well as Zika and other insect-borne illnesses.
Goran Matijasevic, M.S. ’85, Ph.D. ’91, senior assistant vice chancellor for alumni and constituent relations and executive director of the UCI Chief Executive Roundtable, will be recognized for Outstanding Staff Achievement. He oversees and advances research collaborations and strategic initiatives linked to the Alumni Association and Chief Executive Roundtable programs, protocol and mission objectives. Matijasevic serves as UCI’s ambassador to local and national business communities, establishing partnerships and opportunities that enhance leader-to-leader connections across all campus interdisciplinary fields.
Twelve individuals will be honored as 2017 Distinguished Alumni:
- Eveline Eng, M.F.A. ’00, Claire Trevor School of the Arts; musician, music educator and entrepreneur
- Marlene Godoy ’76, Francisco J. Ayala School of Biological Sciences; D.D.S.
- Mark Kehke ’83, MBA ’93, The Paul Merage School of Business; managing director, DMB Pacific Ventures LLC
- Reginald Sample, Ed.D. ’09, School of Education; instructional director, secondary schools, Los Angeles Unified School District
- John Labib ’94, The Henry Samueli School of Engineering; founder and president, John Labib + Associates Structural Engineers
- Robert Nealy ’68, School of Humanities (posthumous award); founder, Surf More XM, and inventor of the Velcro surf leash
- Tim Kashani ’86, MBA ’88, Donald Bren School of Information & Computer Sciences; co-founder, Apples & Oranges Studios and IT Mentors, and Broadway producer
- Reuben Chen, M.D. ’07, School of Medicine; vice president, Sunrider
- Kenneth Hays ’77, M.S. ’80, Ph.D. ’85, School of Physical Sciences; senior technical fellow, Boeing
- Eloy Ortiz Oakley ’96, MBA ’99, School of Social Ecology; chancellor, California Community Colleges
- John Williams ’85 and Michelle Williams ’87, School of Social Sciences; partner, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, and philanthropist, respectively
- Sheniece Smith, paralegal certificate ’08, Division of Continuing Education; J.D., associate general counsel, Children’s Hospital of Orange County
Additional awardees are Outstanding Undergraduate Student Martha Morales of the School of Social Sciences; Outstanding Graduate Student Yader Lanuza of the School of Social Sciences; and Distinguished Young Alumna Lorina Ting Deng ’14 of the School of Social Sciences.
This year’s celebration will be held at a secret location on campus showcasing one of UCI’s state-of-the-art new buildings. Themed “The Distinguished Anteater Dining Society,” the evening will start with signature cocktails, followed by food and wine pairings inspired by notable alumni.
Table sponsorships and individual tickets are on sale now. Net proceeds from the event support the UCI Alumni Association Endowed Student Scholarship Fund. For sponsorship opportunities, contact Paul Phootrakul, the Alumni Association’s director of business development, at 949-824-4575.
About the UCI Alumni Association: The UCI Alumni Association was founded in 1968 to enrich the lives of alumni and engage them in lifelong advancement of UCI. It fosters the success of the university’s more than 180,000 alumni by connecting them to one another and providing a wide range of university resources. With UCI’s ambition of being a globally preeminent university, the UCI Alumni Association strives to empower and support its alumni community through chapters, career recruitment opportunities, social gatherings, a membership program, and alumni engagement programs and events. For more information, see www.alumni.uci.edu.
About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is the youngest member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. The campus has produced three Nobel laureates and is known for its academic achievement, premier research, innovation and anteater mascot. Led by Chancellor Howard Gillman, UCI has more than 30,000 students and offers 192 degree programs. It’s located in one of the world’s safest and most economically vibrant communities and is Orange County’s second-largest employer, contributing $5 billion annually to the local economy. For more on UCI, visit www.uci.edu.
Media access: Radio programs/stations may, for a fee, use an on-campus ISDN line to interview UCI faculty and experts, subject to availability and university approval. For more UCI news, visit news.uci.edu. Additional resources for journalists may be found at communications.uci.edu/for-journalists.