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Distinguished Alumni Award


This award is given to any living alumni member, who is a graduate of Millersville University and who has been distinguished in such a way as to bring honor to the individual, the University and/or the Millersville University Alumni Association.

The MU Alumni Association, through its Executive Committee having created the Distinguished Alumni Award for alumni who through outstanding achievements, and/or have served their Alma Mater, has adopted the following general standards of eligibility and procedure for selection. [This award was established in 1971.]

Standards and Eligibility

The award may be given to a living alumnus of Millersville University who has been distinguished in such a way to bring honor to the individual for their professional achievements, contributions to society, to the University and/or the MU Alumni Association.

Nominations for the award may be submitted by any person familiar with the achievements of an individual’s distinguished endeavor. Letters of support and a completed nomination form shall be submitted to the Nominations and Awards Committee concerning the nomination: 

WHO - name, address, telephone number, etc.

WHAT was the service or special distinction? Briefly describe its nature and purpose and the goals achieved.

WHEN was the service or special distinction? Of what duration, with specific dates?

WHERE was the service or special distinction? Was it rendered to the alumni constituency, state, or nation?

HOW was the service or special distinction accomplished? Qualify the manner in which the service was rendered.

Analysis of Achievement - conclude the nomination by assessing the nominee’s achievement in total. Indicate the impact the service had upon the Alumni Association, University, and/or individual. Please include any additional material which will further substantiate your analysis of this service/special distinction.

Procedure for Selection

1. The Nominations and Awards Committee shall verify and pass on the eligibility of those nominated.

2. It shall be the Nominations and Awards Committee’s responsibility to review the nominations and select one person for the award. Nominations not acted upon in the current year may be held for reconsideration the following year.

3. Committee members shall not divulge the name considered. The award winner shall be notified by the chairman of the Nominations and Awards Committee or the Director of Alumni Services. 

4. Criteria for this award may be amended by a 2/3 vote of the Committee present at a meeting.

5. The deadline for nominations for this award is always the third Friday of February. Nominations should be sent to:

Nominations & Awards Committee/MUAA, c/o Office of Alumni Engagement, Millersville University, PO Box 1002, Millersville, PA 17551-0302 or fax: 717.871.5050 or email:


The formal presentation of this award shall be made at an appropriate University and/or Alumni Association function and in a form and manner approved by the governing body of the MU Alumni Association.

An award and/or certificate of recognition will be given to the recipient at the time of the presentation of the Distinguished Alumni Award.

A plaque inscribed with the name of each recipient will be displayed in the Duncan Alumni House and the University Room, Gordinier Hall.


Hugh Herr '90

Associate Professor, Media Arts and Sciences
Associate Professor, Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology

Hugh Herr directs the Biomechatronics group at The MIT Media Lab.

His research program seeks to advance technologies that promise to accelerate the merging of body and machine, including device architectures that resemble the body’s musculoskeletal design, actuator technologies that behave like muscle, and control methodologies that exploit principles of biological movement. His methods encompass a diverse set of scientific and technological disciplines, from the science of biomechanics and biological movement control to the design of biomedical devices for the treatment of human physical disability.

His research accomplishments in science and technology have already made a significant impact on physically challenged people. The Transfemoral Quasipassive Knee Prosthesis has been commercialized by Össur Inc., and is now benefiting amputees throughout the world.  In 2006, he founded the company iWalk Inc. to commercialize the Powered Ankle-Foot Prosthesis and other bionic leg devices.  Professor Herr’s work impacts a number of academic communities. He has given numerous invited and plenary lectures at international conferences and colloquia, including the IVth World Congress of Biomechanics, the International Conference on Advanced Prosthetics, the National Assembly of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, World Economic Forum, Google Zeitgeist, Digital Life Design, and the TEDMED Conference. He is Associate Editor for the Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation, and has served as a reviewer for the Journal of Experimental Biology, the International Journal of Robotics Research, IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering, and the Proceedings of the Royal Society: Biological Sciences. He has been invited to participate in joint funding proposals from other universities and corporations, and has served on research review panels including the National Institute of Health, the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation, and the Department of Veterans Affairs. In 2007, He was presented with the 13th Annual Heinz Award for Technology, the Economy and Employment. His work has been featured by various national and international media, including Scientific American Frontiers, Technology Review, National Geographic, the History Channel, and CNN. He continues to stay involved at Millersville by conducting a class for math/physics students and faculty and was the Key Note Speaker at May 6, 2011 Commencement.

Past Recipients of the Distinguished Alumni Award:

1971 Dr. D. L. Biemesderfer ‘17

1972 Dr. Walter B. Waetjen ‘42

1973 Velma Dilworth McCollough ‘24

1973 William M. McCain ‘43

1974 A. Norman Ranck ‘22

1974 Henry J. Kauffman ‘32

1975 Dr. George F. Stauffer ‘29

1976 Ivan J. Stehman ‘29

1977 Josephine I. Darmstaetter ‘35

1978 Weptanomah Washington Carter ‘59

1979 John Ward Willson Loose ‘47

1980 Dr. William H. Duncan ‘40

1981 Dr. B. Anton Hess ‘36

1981 Dr. Frank Lisella ‘57

1982 Robert G. Hostetter ‘35

1983 Dr. Lloyd W. Showers ‘39

1983 Ruth Grigg Horting ‘20

1984 Dr. Victor M. Bove ‘54

1984 Dr. Elizabeth Hirak Field ‘74

1985 Robert S. Walker ‘64

1986 Dr. Richard C. Todd ‘38

1987 William H. Bolger ‘38

1987 John F. S. Rees ‘38

1987 Steven A. DiGuiseppe ‘82

1988 N. Eugene Shoemaker ‘27

1989 Dr. Richard C. Keller ‘45

1990 Jere W. Schuler ‘56

1990 Ralph W. Hess ‘62

1991 Dr. William H. Flaharty ‘24

1992 Anna F. Lockey ‘25

1993 Thomas E. Entenmann ‘47

1993 Charles W. Hash ‘48

1993 Frances L. Keller ‘45

1994 Dr. George Ditlow ‘49

1994 Harry K. Lines ‘40

1995 Glenn Flegal ‘54

1996 Dr. J. Freeland Chryst ‘50

1997 Dr. G. Terry Madonna ‘64

1998 M. Diane Koken ‘72

1999 Dr. Howard Jones ‘62

2000 Barbara Rogers ‘63

2001 Dr. Renee O’Leary ‘50

2002 Stephen L. Powell ‘72

2003 Roy B. Clair, Jr. ‘67

2003 Dr. Dominick DiNunzio ‘53

2004 Dr. Richard J. Hess Sr. ‘49

2005 Sue A. Walker ‘64

2006 Dr. Richard L. Frerichs ‘64

2007 Dr. James E. Seitz ‘50

2008 Dr. Gary L. Miller ‘80

2009 Paul S. Beideman ‘71

2010 John M. Getz ‘99

2011 Dr. R. William Field ‘77/’85

2012 Patricia Doll ‘82

2013 Dr. Melvin  Allen '69

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