Alumni at Aquinas College

Distinguished Service Award

We celebrate alumni who have demonstrated significant service to Aquinas College at the annual Awards Gala.


2018 Recipient

Karen Palmore '89

The Alumni Association Leadership Council honors Karen Palmore ‘89 with the Distinguished Service Award. Karen recently retired from UBS Financial Services, where she and her husband led the team Palmore Consulting Group to top honors in West Michigan, across the nation and internationally. All the while, she was serving her church, Cascade Fellowship, and community, including acting as Trustee on the Clark Retirement Community Board for nine years.

Karen served on the Aquinas Fund as a co-chair. Then, she was asked in 2003 to serve on the Board of Trustees, where she served for the next nine years. During this time, she served on the Executive Committee of the board and as chair of the Board Advancement Committee. In 2012, she was given the honorary lifetime title of trustee emerita for her service to the College.



  • Alumni and Friends of the College shall be eligible for the award.
  • Time, effort, and monetary gifts on behalf of Aquinas College shall constitute the criteria in considering a candidate for the award. The award may recognize one, two, or three of these elements.
  • The Outstanding Alumnus/Alumna award shall be presented at the Awards Gala during Homecoming Weekend.

Past Recipients

Ray Bauer '64
1971 Honoree

Philip Kernicki '65
1971 Honoree

Lyle Morrision '52
1971 Honoree

Sister Aquin Gallagher, O.P.
1972 Honoree

Sister Mary Gonzago Udell, O.P. †
1973 Honoree

C. Arthur Woodhouse
1974 Honoree

Peter Wege
1975 Honoree

Raymond Knape
1976 Honoree

Sister M. Aquinas Weber, O.P. '58
1977 Honoree

Hugh Allen
1978 Honoree

Neil Colings
1979 Honoree

Carol Duba Holm '61
1979 Honoree

Don Freeman
1980 Honoree

Ken Marin '47
Mildred Jablonski Martin '47

1981 Honorees

The Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids
1982 Honorees

Sister Anne Keating, O.P. '57
1983 Honoree

Jane Hibbard Idema
1984 Honoree

Richard Gillett
1985 Honoree

Monsignor Arthur Bukowski
1986 Honoree

Ella Sims '87
1987 Honoree

Harold Davidson
1988 Honoree

Rosemary Murphy
1989 Honoree

The Raaymakers Family
1990 Honoree

John Cummiskey
1991 Honoree

George McAleenan
1991 Honoree

Fred Clancy '40 †
1992 Honoree

Paul Pearson
1992 Honoree

John Veneklasen
1994 Honoree

John Jackoboice
1995 Honoree

Marge Byington
1996 Honoree

Marty Allen
1997 Honoree

Edward "Ned" Smtih, Sr. '61
1998 Honoree

Edward Twohey
1999 Honoree

The Reverend Jim Cusack
2000 Honoree

David Weinandy, Ph.D.
2001 Honoree

Nancy (Murphy) Erhandt
2002 Honoree

John Wheeler
2004 Honoree

Estelila "Stella" Ferris '88 †
2005 Honoree

Mike Lown '86
Kathleen (Hieshetter '87) Lown

2006 Honorees

Lee E. Jacokes, Ph.D. '61
2007 Honoree

José Narezo '75
2008 Honoree

Father Mark Pryzbysz '83
2009 Honoree

Robert Boguslaski, Ph.D. '62
2010 Honoree

Thomas Zwier, Ph.D. '76
2010 Honoree

Patrick A. Miles, Sr. M.M. '95
2011 Honoree

Robert J. White ’71
2017 Honoree