2004 - 11th Distinguished Alumni

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Phillip David

College of Agriculture
BS Animal Science, Class of 1976

Dr. Phillip David began his career in genetics as an assistant professor at the University of Arizona, Tucson. David joined PIC International Group (later renamed Sygen International) in 1982 as a geneticist and moved up through the ranks to become president in 1991, and CEO in 1998. Sygen International uses biotechnology and quantitative genetics to improve livestock farmers breeding stock. Sygen operates in 30 countries with corporate headquarters in Berkeley, and is listed as a stand-alone public company on the London Stock Exchange. David’s teams have received the Queen’s Award for Technical Achievement, and Queen’s Award for Export Achievement.

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Michael A. Messner

College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
BA Social Science, Class of 1974
MA Sociology, Class of 1976

Dr. Michael A. Messner is a professor of sociology and gender studies at the University of Southern California, and has served as Sociology Department Chair since 2001. Messner has written 9 books including his most recent, Taking the Field: Women, Men and Sports (2002), and Power at Play: Sports and the Problem of Masculinity (1992), winner of the 1993 Book of the Year Award from the North American Society for the Sociology of Sport. He has written more than 70 other publications and has delivered more than 55 invited lectures and keynote addresses. In addition, Messner serves as a member on several editorial boards and serves on the Women’s Sports Foundation Advisory Board.

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Charles E. Seufferlein

College of Business
BS Business Administration, Class of 1974
Honor Year: 2004

Charles "Chuck" E. Seufferlein began his career in commercial real estate in 1975 while working toward completion of his MBA at the University of Santa Clara. Seufferlein worked for Coldwell Banker for ten years, served six years as President and partner at The Sammis Development Company, and returned to CB Commercial (Coldwell Banker) in 1991 as the Silicon Valley office Senior Vice President/Managing Officer. He was awarded the Frank J. Mahoney Leadership Award for Management by the CB Commercial Board of Directors for both 1992 and 1993. In 1995, Seufferlein left CB Commercial for Cornish & Carey Commercial, where he served as Executive Vice President and Partner, Chief Executive Officer, and as of June 2002, President and CEO.

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Scott Dalecio

College of Communication & Education
BA Recreation Administration, Class of 1986
Honor Year: 2004

Scott Dalecio serves as the Resort Division President for the KSL Recreation Corporation, owner of prestigious resorts including La Costa Resort and Spa, La Quinta Resort, The Grand Wailea Resort on Maui, The Claremont Resort in Berkeley, and their newest acquisition, the Hotel del Coronado.

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Stephen Gonsalves

College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management
BS Civil Engineering, Class of 1981

Stephen Gonsalves serves as Vice President and Principal Structural Engineer for the firm of Nichols, Melburg, and Rossetto, the firm responsible for Nettleton Baseball Stadium, the expansion of the Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, and the new NM&R office building in downtown Chico. The epitome of a self-made man, Gonsalves entered the foster care system at the age of eight, and has lived on his own since turning fifteen. Gonsalves received the Chico Chamber of Commerce Business Person of the Year Award for 1998, and the Boys and Girls Club Distinguished Service Award for 1999. In addition, Gonsalves has served on the boards of several engineering associations, including the CSU, Chico Civil Engineering Professional Advisory Board.

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Peggy Newfield

College of Humanities & Fine Arts
BA History and Italian, Class of 1977

Peggy Newfield has focused her company on providing educational journeys for people who are fascinated with Latin America. After graduating in 1977, Newfield worked for a variety of travel companies, moving from retail to destination and then to adventure travel, all while squeezing in as many trips as she could. While working for Mountain Travels-Sobek, she began to dream of a company that would draw on her loves – “living” history, language, culture, art, and archaeology. The result is Latin American Escapes, a company that focuses on educational, sustainable tourism and incorporates cultural experiences by relying on local companies in each country. Newfield has recently relocated her company to Chico and is active in many ecotourism groups.

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Jane M. Hightower

College of Natural Sciences
BS Biological Sciences, Class of 1983

Dr. Jane M. Hightower made a big splash in the media with her study linking mercury poisoning with high-end fish consumption. This led to her participation in more than 75 media interviews to an FDA warning to limit fish consumption for reproductive age women and for infants and small children and to Proposition 65 enforcement and law suits brought about by California State Attorney General Bill Lockyer. Hightower was elected to the San Francisco Medical Society Board of Directors and received recognition from San Francisco Magazine as one of the top 500 doctors in the San Francisco Bay Area (January 2001) and as a Green Giant for outstanding environmental contribution (June 2003). Hightower has had a private practice in San Francisco with a focus on diagnostics, preventive medicine, environmental medicine, and food contaminants. She continues to give lectures and write papers on the subject of mercury, health, and the environment.

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