Bolivia, Jamaica, Micronesia, Philippines, Sierra Leone, Togo, Zambia
By JoAnna Haugen on Thursday, May 13th, 2010
Academy Award-winning directory Taylor Hackford (68-69) was awarded with the University of Southern California’s 2010 Asa V. Call Alumni Achievement Award, the highest honor given by the USC Alumni Association. Hackford began his cinematic career at Los Angeles’ local public television station. When he moved from the mailroom to behind the camera, he won an Academy Award for his short film Teenage Father. Since then, Hackford has worked with some of Hollywood’s biggest stars. He is currently the president of the Directors Guild of America.
Ellen Siler (71-73) has worked her entire adult life in the non-profit sector. She is currently the CEO of Hubbard House Inc., which provides comprehensive domestic violence services in Jacksonville. Prior to her current position, Siler was the executive director of Quigley House in Clay County.
The College of the Holy Cross awarded a Sanctae Crucis Award to Gregory M. Dever (68-70). Dever is a pediatrician who has dedicated his career to improving medical care in the South Pacific. He served as the director of the Pacific Basin Medical Officers Training Program, which educated and trained 70 Micronesians and American Samoans as physicians.
Gary E. Robson (87-89) recently left his teaching post at St. Petersburg College and started a small publishing house called Nipa Hut Press. His first book, Misadventures in Maasin, is a collection of humorous stories from his Peace Corps days. His second book, Chess Child, picks up where the first book ends. It is a narrative of his relationship with his son, Ray Robson, and tells the story of how Ray passed Bobby Fischer to become the youngest grandmaster in the United States.
Allen Mondell (63-65) has been a documentary filmmaker for the past 40 years. He is currently working on a documentary through his company Media Projects about the Peace Corps experience, which tells the story of Peace Corps volunteers through their letters, diaries and journals. Mondell hopes to complete the film during the 50th anniversary of the Peace Corps.
Mark Voss (87-90) has been selling his products at the Dane County Famers’ Market since 1994. Voss, a University of Illinois graduate, found a passion in organic farming during his Peace Corps service. Upon his return to the United States, Voss took an apprenticeship with an organic farm in Wisconsin, began his own community-supported agriculture operation and started to sell produce at the famers’ market. Today, Voss Organics is not only a mainstay at the market, but products from the company are featured at two restaurants in the Madison area.
Lara Weber (00-02) is the national health content editor for the Chicago Tribune and Tribune Co. newspapers. She was an editor at the Chicago Tribune for seven years before joining the Peace Corps and returned to the newspaper after her service to create and launch the RedEye, a commuter newspaper owned by the Tribune. Weber has held various editing positions in the news and features departments. She also served as a Crisis Corps volunteer in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina in 2005.