2016: Jeanne Ann Conry
2015: Debra Geary Hook
2014: Craig Lindsley
2013: K. Darwin Murrell
2012: Jennifer McCallum
2004: Jane Hightower
2003: Antoinette Procopio
2002: Edo D. Pellizzari
2001: Michael Strand
2000: Marshall L. Ginter
1999: Judy Martin-Holland
1998: Jack Farmer
1997: Walter Eugene Ryley
1996: Kenneth E. Lange
1995: Leta B. Cox
1994: Floyd L. English
Each year the College of Natural Sciences, together with the University, recognizes one of its outstanding alumni. These individuals serve as role models for students of today by highlighting how the California State University, Chico experience has made a difference in their lives.
The information listed below is from the Distinguished Alumni Award program from the year that the Alumnus was recognized.
Biological Sciences 1974
Dr. Jeanne Conry has been a practicing obstetrician gynecologist at Kaiser Permanente for the past 25 years, and currently serves in a leadership capacity as the Assistant Physician-in-Chief for Kaiser Permanente’s Sacramento Roseville region. From 1997 – 2004, Conry served as Chair of the Women’s Health Care Task Force, where she championed osteoporosis screenings, began the breast care center in Sacramento, and oversaw the design and development of the group’s Women and Children’s Center, which is one of the largest obstetric service providers for Kaiser Permanente in the U.S.
Conry received the Environmental Achievement Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 2012 for work on reproductive health and the environment. In 2013, she received the Visionary Leadership Award from the University of California San Francisco Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment In 2014, the U.S. House of Representatives acknowledged her accomplishments in women's health and entered a commendation into the Congressional Record. Conry earned her medical degree from UC Davis, and earned a PhD in biology from the University of Colorado, Boulder. Conry currently lives with her husband Bruce Webb in Granite Bay.
Food and Nutrition 1985
Debra Geary Hook is a pediatric dietitian with Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, with Miller Children’s Hospital, and in private practice. She serves as a consultant dietitian for Ultragenyx, a clinical-stage biotechnology company. She teaches nutrition classes at Cal Poly Pomona; CSU, San Bernardino; and Loma Linda School of Allied Health and School Public Health. Geary Hook has been named an Outstanding Dietetics Educator by the American Dietetic Association and serves on many committees working on nutrition protocols. She volunteers her time with the California Coalition for Phenylketonuria (PKU) and Allied Disorders, the Pasadena animal rescue, and the March of Dimes. Geary Hook lives in Southern California with her husband, Frederic Hook (Class of 1985, Engineering), and would like to spend her spare time finishing up her doctorate.
Craig W. Lindsley, Ph.D. is the Professor of Pharmacology & Chemistry and Director of Medicinal Chemistry for the Vanderbilt Center for Neuroscience Drug Discovery. Craig graduated from Chico with a B.S. in Chemistry, received his Ph.D. at UC, Santa Barbara and pursued postdoctoral studies at Harvard. Craig worked at Lilly and Merck & Co., pioneering allosteric modulation, in positions of increasing responsibility before moving to Vanderbilt in 2006. Craig is the founding Editor-in-Chief of ACS Chemical Neuroscience, and has received numerous awards: the ASPET-Astellas Award, the ACS MEDI Portoghese Lectureship and the John J. Abel Award in Pharmacology from ASPET. Craig holds 35 issued US patents and has published over 300 manuscripts.
Biological Sciences 1962Honorary Professor, Danish Centre for Experimental Parasitology, University of Copenhagen, K. Darwin Murrell served as the deputy administrator of the Agricultural Research Service (ARS), the US Department of Agriculture’s chief scientific research arm, where his research focused on the protection of humans and animals from food-borne diseases. Murrell received the 1984 ARS Outstanding Scientist of the Year award, the 1988 American Association of Veterinary Parasitologists (AAVP) Distinguished Parasitologist Award, a 1996 Fulbright Award, and a 1997 Presidential Distinguished Federal Executive Rank Award. Murrell joined the University of Copenhagen in 2000, where his work focused on parasites transmitted from fish. He was named honorary professor upon his retirement in 2004. He has served as president of the American Society of Parasitologists, AAVP, and the International Trichinellosis Commission.
Biological Sciences 1999
In 2001, Jennifer McCallum earned both a PhD in physiology from Colorado State University, and a JD from the University of Colorado. McCallum founded her own patent law firm in Colorado and has been actively involved in complex legal issues for many years. She was instrumental in arguing a case to help make private storage of stem cells available to all expectant parents, and played an integral part in the issuance of the first permit for the production of pharmaceuticals in Colorado. Technologies developed by McCallum have sold for many millions of dollars. McCallum has also received many awards and much recognition for her work, including being voted a Rising Star in the Legal Field by Super Lawyers in 2009, 2010 and 2011; A Top Young Attorney by 5280 Magazine in 2009, 2010 and 2011; One of the Top 40 Business Leaders Under the Age of 40 by the Denver Business Journal in 2004 and Outstanding Woman in Business in the professional services category in 2005. She also served on the State of Colorado’s Biotechnology Council after being appointed by Governor Owens and was the vice-chair of the American Bar Association’s bio-ethics committee for four years. McCallum is also a frequent speaker and has presented at the International Stem Cell Symposium in London, the Stem Cell Research and Human Cloning Symposium in Boston, the Merial-NIH Symposium and many other scientific and legal venues.
Biological Sciences 1973
Dr. William Carroll, the Julie and Edward J. Minskoff Professor of Pediatrics, directs the NYU Cancer Institute and the Pediatric Hematology Oncology Program at NYU Medical Center, has extensive experience in all aspects of the care of children with cancer and blood diseases. He has a particular interest in the treatment of children with leukemia and directs clinical trials in acute lymphoblastic leukemia for the Children's Oncology Group.
Dr. Carroll is Head of the Children's Oncology Group Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Disease Committee and is responsible for developing and directing clinical research in North America for children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, the most common childhood cancer.
As a practicing pediatric hematologist/oncologist, Dr. Carroll has treated hundreds of children with cancer. He has worked tirelessly to transfer knowledge gained in his laboratory into more effective treatments for his patients. He has consistently been named one of the Country’s best doctors in multiple national publications and professional lists.
Dr. Carroll has served as both a Member and Chair of the National Cancer Institute’s Subcommittee A for Cancer Centers. Dr. Carroll holds an M.D. from the University of California-Irvine, and obtained his Post-Doctoral Training in Pediatric Hematology-Oncology at Stanford University Medical Center.
For more information, see www.med.nyu.edu/biosketch/carrow01
Leon has more than 20 years' work experience on embedded space vehicle systems (The Hubble Space Telescope), geophysics applications, control systems, and electromagnetic analysis. Leon is the College's 2010 Distinguished Alumnus. He served as the chief architect for Philips North American Medical Systems and as a software systems designer and Senior Program Manager at Microsoft. He has presented at Microsoft U.S. TechEd conferences, as well as conferences in Europe and Asia. He recently wrote and published a book, "How To Be Found: Search Engine Optimization." He is currently the Principal at Amazon.
Chemistry and Economics, 1969
Lance Astrella has been engaged in the private practice of law for 35 years with a primary emphasis in the energy industry. He is the senior partner of Astrella & Rice P.C. based in Denver, Colorado, and is a member of the State Bars of California and Colorado. Mr. Astrella's work in the energy field is focused on balancing the need for domestic fossil fuel with environmental sustainability, including preservation of water resources. Major trials have involved environmental protection and market manipulation in the energy sector.
Mr. Astrella obtained his Bachelor's degrees in Chemistry and Economics from California State University, Chico, in 1969, a Master's degree in Economics from the University of California, Davis, in 1970 and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law in 1973.
For more information, see www.astrellalaw.com.
Nutrition Science/Nutrition Education, 1990
Suzanna Nye has made a career of helping others achieve career success in the field of dietetics. She has helped write, implement, and evaluate the State of California professional examinations for community nutrition classifications, resulting in State of California job eligibility for hundreds of dietetics professionals. Author of four peer-reviewed publications, Nye is a key presenter to American Dietetics Association (ADA) members, and has served in ADA membership at the national, state and local levels, including as president of the California Dietetics Association. Nye received the 2006 Delores Nyhus Award for providing the highest level of dietetic leadership in California.
As the founder and CEO of Etaran Instruments, Inc., Edward Tarver has patented an ion mobility spectrometry instrument that is used in chemical detection and identification and has great implications for the military in the field of chemical warfare and counter terrorism. Tarver is also a mural artist and has designed school logos for San Jose State and De La Salle High School. He was a professor at Grambling State University and has served as president of the Faculty Advisory Council to the Board of Trustees/State Colleges, Louisiana, and as vice president of the Faculty Advisory Council to the Board of Regents/State Colleges, Louisiana. He is currently an Associate Professor of Analytical Chemistry at the University of the Virgin Islands in St. Thomas.
Physical Sciences 1987
James Millerd launched 4D Vision Technology, Inc. in 2000 to commercialize patented technology. As the chief technology officer for the 4D Technology Corporation of Tucson, Arizona, Millerd leads a team of engineers to develop state-of-the-art optical instrumentation. Author of more than 30 publications, Millerd has been granted four U.S. patents, and has four more U.S. patents and one foreign patent pending. He has also received several awards for his work with interferometers and a NASA Certificate for Recognition for his development of a Novel Laser Doppler Vibrometer. Millerd serves on the CSU, Chico Physics Advisory Board. Millerd has B.S. degrees in Physics and in Electrical and Electronic Engineering. He earned his M.S. and Ph.D. in Electronic Engineering, Quantum Electronics and Optics from the University of Southern California.
School of Nursing 1980
Colonel Douglas G. Jackson is the Department Head of the Primary Care Clinic at the Port Hueneme Naval Ambulatory Care Center. Jackson began his career as a secondary science and math teacher in the Kingdom of Tonga. In 1976, Jackson worked as a research assistant for the World Health Organization Project in Tonga. Back in the United States, Jackson joined the military following his graduation from the nursing program at CSU, Chico. He earned his MS in health service administration from Central Michigan University and his family nurse practitioner specialty from UCLA. He has served as clinical coordinator and assistant professor at Uniform Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland, where he was awarded the Dean's Teaching Award. Jackson has received several Meritorious Service and Achievement Medals from the United States Army.
Biological Sciences 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 recently 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).
Mathematics and Statistics 1978
Antoinette Procopio began her 24-year career in aerospace as one of the first female engineers to perform integration and testing of communication satellites. Her career began with Huges Space and Communications Company, now Boeing Satellite Systems. Procopio has held several positions of increasing responsibility and is now spacecraft manager. She has served on 12 launch-site campaign teams performing final integration, inspection, and testing of satellites boosted by Delta, Atlas, Titan, Ariane, and Space Shuttle launch vehicles. In her current role, Procopio is responsible for leading various teams in the successful integration assembly, and test of commercial and government satellite programs. Procopio is a charter member of the CSU, Chico Department of Mathematices Advisory Board.
Biological Sciences 1963
Dr. Edo D. Pellizzari, Vice President for Analytical and Chemical Sciences at Research Triangle Institute (RTI) in North Carolina, is responsible for the management and technical leadership of large chemical analysis and analytical methods development contracts with EPA, state and industrial clients. Pellizzari is a member of the EPA's Food Quality Protection Act, Health Effects Institute's Review Committee, EPS's Science Advisory Board, and several National Academy of Sciences' review committees. Pellizzari has over 500 publications to his credit. Government agencies seek Pellizzari's expertise and advice in air and water pollution, characterization of pollutants in environmental and biological media and synfuel production.
Biological Sciences 1967
Mike Strand is the Co-owner of SYMON Communications, Inc. Strand’s Houston-based company, SYMON Communications, Inc., specializes in visual communication software for call centers, help desks, and command centers. He is primarily responsible for establishing the international expansion of the company. Following college and before entering the computer industry, Strand served three years in the U.S. Army as a Field Artillery 1st Lieutenant. Prior to co-founding his company in 1984, Strand held major account executive positions at ITEL Computer/Rail Leasing and IBM’s Large Systems division. His near-retirement goals include volunteer and advisory involvement with CSU, Chico, Outward Bound and Expeditionary Education initiative programs.
Marshall L. Ginter is a professor at the Institute for Physical Science and Technology at the University of Maryland and an adjunct professor at the University of Illinois, Urbana. His current research centers on electronic structures in atoms and small molecules, high resolution spectroscopy, vacuum ultraviolet and soft x-ray spectroscopy and high and ultra high vacuum instrumentation. Ginter graduated cum laude in 1957 with a BA in Chemistry and a minor in Physics. He received his Ph.D. from Vanderbilt in 1961. His academic career includes positions at Vanderbilt, the University of Chicago, Physikalische Anstalt de Universitat Basel, as well as University of Maryland and University of Urbana. He was a consultant for twenty-eight years for the E.O. Hulbert Center for Space Research, Naval Research Laboratory in Washington D.C. and a guest worker at the National Bureau of Standards in Gaithersburg, M.D. A writer of more than 100 articles, Ginter has published articles in publications such as Journal of Chemical Physics and the Journal of Optical Society of America. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society and the Optical Society of America.
School of Nursing 1977
Judy Martin-Holland is a pulmonary clinical nurse specialist and family nurse practitioner at the Summit Medical Center and also at Bay Area Pulmonary Medical Associates in Oakland, CA. In addition, she is a pulmonary CNS/FNP consultant for Pacific Pulmonary Rehabilitation. Martin-Holland has received licenses and certifications including Registered Nurse, Critical Care Nurse Certification, California Community College Teaching Credential, Nurse Practitioner, and she is in the process of receiving a Clinical Nurse Specialist Certification. Martin-Holland serves as an assistant clinical professor in the Department of Physiological Nursing at the University of California, San Francisco.
She is President of the American Nurses Association for the State of California. Martin-Holland earned her B.S. in Nursing from CSU, Chico in 1977. She went on to earn a masters of public administration from CSU, Hayward in 1981, and a masters of science in nursing with a specialty in cardiopulmonary from University of California, San Francisco in 1985 and her post-masters family nurse practitioner certificate from University of California, San Francisco in 1995. She also devotes time to such groups as the Bay Area Black Health Consortium, the National Black Nurses Association, and Sigma Theta Tau International.
Geological Sciences 1969
Jack Farmer is a Professor of Geological Sciences at Arizona State University's School of Earth and Space Exploration. He received his B.A. in Geology from CSU, Chico in 1969 and his M.S. in Geology from the University of Kansas in 1971. In 1978, he received a Ph.D. in Paleobiology from UC, Davis. He was a graduate research assistant at the University of Kansas, and became a research associate during and after his studies at UC, Davis. In 1981, he became a senior geologist for Exxon Company in the Western Division Production in Thousand Oaks, California, and served as a senior post-doctoral fellow for the National Research Council at the NASA Ames Research Center. In 1993, Farmer became a research scientist for SETI Institute and NASA Ames Research Center. Farmer continues to share his passion for geology through college teaching, television appearances, and numerous abstracts and papers published in professional journals and books. On a personal level, he is involved in education outreach with the local Native American community.
Physical Sciences 1972
Gene Ryley is president of Cupertino Electric, based in San Jose, California. He received his B.A. in 1972 and M.A. in 1974 in Physical Science from California State University, Chico. His five years of experience with state and federal programs involved supervision of scientific research and formation of guidelines and legal standards. Gene taught physical science for one year at Butte College. His experience during his career with Cupertino Electric includes that of an electrician, project manager, chief estimator, and vice president of sales. In January 1995, Gene was appointed to the position of Executive Vice President, and in January 1997 he was appointed to the position of President of Cupertino Electric, Inc. He is a member of the National Association of Electrical contractors and a member of the National Association of Electrical Contractors and a member of the executive committee of TEC, an organization of Chief Executive Officers. Tennis and golf are two of Gene’s special interests, and he has won three national championships in sailing.
Biological Sciences 1965
Dr. Kenneth E. Lange received his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree in 1969 from the University of the Pacific, School of Dentistry, and returned to Chico to establish his practice. He is a past president of the California Dental Association, and received their Most Improved Communications Awards in 1985 and the Chico Unified Teachers Association Public Service Award in 1992. Lange has been very active holding many professional offices in the American Dental Association, California Dental Association, Northern California Dental Society, Butte County Health Planning Council, Northern Regional Health Systems Agency and Medical Quality Review Board—Region 1. He is also an honorary member of the American College of Dentists, the Pierre Fauchard Academy, and the International College of Dentists. Lange is passionate about his community involvement. He has held many leadership positions in the Greater Chico Chamber of Commerce, including the position of president during 1992–1993. Other community membership involvement includes Chico Community Foundation, Chico Economic Planning Corporation, Chico Lions Breakfast Club, Chico State Associates and Century Club, Chico Scholarship Association, Little League and Youth Soccer Coach, and Parent Teacher Associations in area schools.
School of Nursing 1981
Leta Cox is currently the Chief Nurse Executive at Mercy Medical Center, implementing progressive ways to provide high quality patient care in the changing health environment. She has served as an instructor in the Statewide Nursing Program and has taught at Shasta Community College. Ms. Cox is certified as a Nurse Administrator, a Medical/Surgical Nurse and a Public Health Nurse, and she serves on the American Heart Association’s board of directors. She was awarded Woman of the Year by the Business and Professional Woman’s Association of Redding in 1993 and the Philosophy in Action Award for Quality and Excellence in 1994 by Catholic Healthcare West.
Physical Sciences 1959
Dr. Floyd L. English has been Chairman and Chief Executive Office of Andrew Corporation, an international supplier of antennas and transmission lines to the telecommunications industry since July 1983. He was named Chairman of Board of Andrew Corporation in September 1994. From January 1982 to July 1983 he was President and Chief Operating Officer and was elected to the Board of Directors in 1982. Dr. English earned his masters and doctorate in physics from Arizona State University. He studied bulk and surface phenomena in semiconductor and ferroelectric materials at the Sandia Laboratories in New Mexico and later was director of marketing for a division of the Collins Radio Company. He joined Andrew Corporation in 1980 and is on the Board of Directors of the Executives’ Club of Chicago, the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy Fund for Advancement of Education and the National Engineering Consortium. He has authored numerous technical publications.