The President of the Year celebrates senior campus leaders who create relationships to advance the ideals and values of the college union and student activities profession. The award supports a campus-wide understanding of the college union’s role in advancing campus community, while showcasing the recipient’s support and engagement beyond their position as an administrator.

2023 Recipient: Robin Bowen, Ph.D.,
Arkansas Tech University  

In preparation for building a new student union and recreation center, Dr. Robin Bowen intentionally provided many student groups the platform to voice their needs. She is a tireless advocate for resources and tools that will help students succeed and provides support for opportunities such as OnTrack, a program that inspires students to reach their full potential through participation in various co-curricular experiences. Her emphasis on grit, integrity, and success is instilled in students through Bowen’s leadership and connection with the campus community. 

The 2023 nomination period has passed. Please check back in April 2024 for details on the next nomination period.

Submission materials must include the following:

  1. Name, institution, and contact information of the nominee.
  2. Name, institution, and contact information of the nominator.
  3. Two to three letters in support of the applicant to receive the award written by individuals such as direct supervisors/advisors, peers/colleagues, students, faculty members, etc., addressing:
    • The achievements of the nominee in the profession.
    • The demonstrated commitment of the nominee to the criteria identified for this specific award.
    • A summary of the nominee’s background to provide evidence that they meet the criteria identified for this specific award, including information related to professional experience and volunteer service—providing a current resume or curriculum vitae for the nominee is optional.

The review process includes, but is not limited to, an assessment of the criteria listed below. The nominee must:

  • Create a campus- and community-wide understanding of the importance of campus community in the learning and success of students.
  • Provide resources, tools, and appreciation to the staff and students involved in advancing campus community.
  • Create relationships to promote the college union and participate outside of their position as an administrator.
  • Ensure that the college union and student activities has a voice at the table when decisions are made.
  • Encourage others to increase their involvement in the campus community.

Individuals who hold the position of president at an ACUI member institution is eligible for this award. Nominations will be considered for five years, provided the nominee still holds the position of president.

Electronic notification will be sent to confirm award submissions have been received. A confidential Individuals Awards and Scholarships Committee, appointed annually by the ACUI president, will review materials to make the selection. One recipient will be chosen, unless otherwise noted for the specific award. One physical award will be given to the recipient, who will be recognized during the awards ceremony at the annual conference and in subsequent publications.

  • 2022: Award not given
  • 2021: Clifton Smart, Missouri State University
  • 2020: Dr. Eli Capilouto, University of Kentucky
  • 2019: Jessica Howard – Portland Community College
  • 2018: Ana Mari Cauce – University of Washington
  • 2017: Jim Murdaugh – Tallahassee Community College
  • 2016: Ricardo Romo – University of Texas–San Antonio
  • 2015: Devorah Lieberman – University of La Verne
  • 2014: Marty Meehan – University of Massachusetts–Lowell
  • 2013: Renu Khator – University of Houston
  • 2012: Stephen Schutt – Lake Forest College