The Presidential Award for Distinguished Service is presented at the discretion of the ACUI President to honor an individual who has demonstrated exceptional and unique service in fulfilling the mission, goals, and values of the Association. Through the award, the individual is recognized for dedication to volunteering, encouraging staff to participate in ACUI programs, and advancing the work of ACUI through their contributions.

2024 Recipients: Sarah Comstock, University of Puget Sound,
and wendy denman, University of North Texas

Sarah Comstock and Wendy Denman responded when asked to serve. “They have volunteered for the organization at many levels throughout there time with ACUI, however they most recently committed their time and energy to serve the association despite what was occurring personally and professionally,” said ACUI President Neela Patel. “When asked to serve the Association to lead the Regional Engagement Task Force both individuals immediately said yes regardless of their other responsibilities.”

Patel expressed her admiration for Comstock and Denman upon presenting the award. “I am always amazed by their love and passion for ACUI and how it is part of who they are and how the lead,” she said.

In considering eligible candidates, a President may take into account the volunteer contributions of an individual or individuals that occurred during their tenure as President-Elect and/or President of the Association. The President has the option, if they choose, to not present the award during their term of office. An individual is not required to hold a defined volunteer position to be considered for this award.

The process for selecting an awardee is at the discretion of the President, who is encouraged but not required to seek input from the Executive Committee.

  • If the President chooses not to give the award, they must notify the Executive Committee of this decision by Jan. 31.
  • If choosing to present the award, the President shall make a selection by January 31 and notify the Executive Committee that the award will be presented and to whom the award is being given.
  • One physical award will be given to the recipient, who will be recognized during the annual conference and in subsequent publications.
  • 2023 Recipient: Sarah Aikman, Northern Kentucky University
  • 2022: Elizabeth Beltramini, ACUI; Geoff Combs, University of Massachusetts–Boston
  • 2020: Deepti Chadee, Texas Christian University
  • 2019: Anthony Otero, Rutgers University
  • 2018: Sarah Comstock, University of Puget Sound
  • 2016: Patrick Connelly, Landmark College; and Mark Guthier, University of Wisconsin–Madison
  • 2015: Ben Williams, Miami University
  • 2014: Brenda Evans, University of Massachusetts–Lowell; Jeremy Schenk, Virginia Commonwealth University; and Cynthia Woolbright, Woolbright Group
  • 2001: Caryl Stern-LaRosa, Anti-Defamation League
  • 2000: Bill Hellams, Video Producers
  • 1999: Peter DeLisle, seminar facilitator
  • 1996: Eric Conn, American Honda Campus All-Star Challenge
  • 1994: Gail Anderson Cywinski, Normandale Community College; and Pat Moonen, University of Arizona
  • 1992: Elizabeth Wright, Tuskegee University
  • 1991: Michael Freeman, University College London Students’ Union
  • 1989: Jerry Mock, University of Wisconsin–Madison
  • 1988: Meg O’Sullivan, SUNY Health-Science Center at Brooklyn