Alumni & Friends
Awards For Alumni And Friends

Heritage and Alumni Award recipients will be presented their awards during Alumni Reunion 2020 held October 16 - 18. We invite alumni, faculty and staff, and friends of the College to submit nominations in all categories. Nominations will be accepted until Febrauary 28, 2020. 


Categories and Criteria

Heritage Awards: Recognizes an alumnus/a or alumni couple and a faculty/staff couple or individual, whose devotion to the ideals of the College serve as extraordinary examples to the entire New Paltz community.

Alumni Professional Achievement Award: Recognizes alumni who have achieved distinction in a chosen profession or outstanding lifetime achievement. Submit a nomination. 

Distinguished Alumni Service Award: Recognizes alumni volunteers who have made exceptional contributions in support of the activities of the SUNY New Paltz Alumni Association. Submit a nomination. 

Friends of the Alumni Association: Recognizes individuals (non-alumni) who have made exeptional contributions in the engagement of alumni in the life of the College. Submit a nomination.


Recent Award Recipients

Harry K. Bonsu ’90 (Political Science)

Harry K. Bonsu ’90 (Political Science)

Heritage Award Recipient

Honoree Harry K. Bonsu ’90 (Political Science) has a keen mind for business and a passion for service. He has built a 25-year career driving results through collaboration, partnerships, relationship building and community service.


Honoree L. David Eaton, vice president of enrollment management

L. David Eaton, vice president of enrollment management

Heritage Award Recipient

L. David Eaton has served as a member of the President’s Cabinet since 1998 and has made significant contributions to the Divisions of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management and to the campus during what will be a 39-year career at the College.


Honoree Linda Eaton, associate vice president for student affairs

Linda Eaton, associate vice president for student affairs

Heritage Award Recipient

Linda Eaton joined SUNY New Paltz as Associate Dean of Students in 1994 and served as Dean of Students from 1997 until 2014, when she was promoted to her current role at the College.



Honoree Kevin Zraly ’74 (Elementary Education)

Kevin Zraly ’74 (Elementary Education)

Alumni Professional Achievement Award

Kevin Zraly ’74 (Elementary Education) is an internationally acclaimed wine educator, best-selling author and a James Beard Lifetime Achievement Award recipient. His passion for wine and food and his engaging teaching style help demystify the evolving world of wine.


Honoree Mary Elizabeth Bannon ’81 (Theatre Arts)

Mary Elizabeth Bannon ’81 (Theatre Arts)

Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Mary Elizabeth Bannon ’81 (Theatre Arts) has led a successful 25-year career with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), an independent agency of the federal government. Her positions in various divisions with the FDIC have allowed her to work in Washington D.C.; Dallas, Texas, and Kansas City, Missouri. She retired in 2014.




Alumni Award Recipients

2019 - Distinguished Alumni Service Award: Mary Elizabeth Bannon '81| Alumni Professional Achievement Award: Harry Bonsu '90
2018 - 
Distinguished Alumni Service Award: Patricia (Gisin) King '60 and Rosemarie (Mainberger) McBride '60 '68 | Alumni Professional Achievement Award: Marc Warren '68 and Dennis Rinsler '68 
2017 - 
Distinguished Alumni Service Award: Camille Jacobs '91 | Alumni Professional Achievement Award: Dr. Neyooxet Greymorning '73 
2016 - Distinguished Alumni Service Award: Robert "Bob" Thorn '66 70'g | Alumni Professional Achievement Award: Col. Joseph D. Davidson '90. 
2015Distinguished Alumni Service Award: Amber Greene '03 


Heritage Award Recipients

2019 - Alumni:Kevin Zraly'74 |Faculty/Staff: David Eaton and Linda Eaton
- Alumni:Everton Henriques '78 '83g and Jeannie Irvine '78 |Alumni: Bruce Orenstein '68 and Sandra (Schwartz) Orenstein '67 | Faculty/Staff: Gail Gallerie | Faculty/Staff Dr. Giancarlo Traverso 
2017 - Alumna: Robin Cohen-LaValle '77 '82g | Alumna: Susan Najork '67 '70g | Faculty/Staff: Dr. Louis Saraceno and Frances Saraceno | Faculty/Staff: Dr. A.J. Williams-Myers  
2016 - Alumna: Mary Kastner '71 | Faculty/Staff: Prof. Joseph C. Paparone
2015 - Alumna: Onika Jervis '93 '05g | Faculty/Staff: Prof. William B. Rhoads 
2014 - Alumnus: Antonio "Tony" Bonilla '87 '05g | Faculty/Staff: Prof. Ronald Knapp 
2013 - Alumni: Robert "Bob" Thorn '66 '70g & Jane (Hausz) Thorn '68 | Faculty/Staff: Linda Delgado-Baker '84 '86g & Prof. Douglas Baker
2012 - Alumni: Robert "Bob" Mountz '68 '71g '80cas and Henrietta (Thomas) Mountz '68 '71g | Faculty/Staff: Dean Robert Michael '75 cas
2011 - Alumna: Sadie (Stellefson) Penzato '66 '68g '76cas | Faculty: Prof. Heinz Meng (deceased)
2010 - Alumna: Rosemarie (Mainberger) McBride '60 '68g | Faculty/Staff: Prof. and Mrs. Karl Budmen (deceased)
2009 - Alumnus: Alan Dunefsky '69 '91g | Faculty: Prof. Ray Snider
2008 - Alumnus: Prof. Joseph Castellana '48 (deceased) | Faculty: Prof. 0. Lin coin "Lin" Igou (deceased)