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Albany Law School Celebrates 2020 Grand Honors Recipients

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Sept. 24 Ceremony among Highlights of Virtual Reunion Week

Albany Law School celebrated five standout graduates and friends at the 2020 Grand Honors Awards on Thursday, September 24, 2020. The ceremony took place online, during the law school’s Virtual Reunion week.

“You have given back in so many ways, through sharing your time and the fruits of your success," President and Dean Alicia Ouellette said of the recipients. "You have lifted all of us up. You are without a doubt, a big part of why Albany Law School is thriving as an independent law school.”

The awards went to:

Trustees Gold Medal
Hon. Randolph F. Treece ’76
Of Counsel, E. Stewart Jones Hacker Murphy; Magistrate Judge (Ret.), U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York

Distinguished Alumni Award
Dale M. Thuillez ’72
Special Counsel, Thuillez, Ford, Gold, Butler & Monroe

Donald D. DeAngelis ’60 Excellence in Alumni Service Award
Thania F. Fernandez ’85
Executive Secretary, New York State Department of Education

Outstanding Young Alumni Award
Emily C. Chapman ’13 (Drazan)
Associate, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius

Humanitarian Achievement Award
M. Sherry Gold and the Gold Family
Founding Donor, Barry A. Gold '70 Health Law Clinical Program Endowment Fund

Video: 2020 Grand Honors Awards

“I’m humbled and I am grateful to receive this acknowledgement,” said Judge Treece, who received the Trustees Gold Medal—Albany Law School's highest honor. “It is Albany Law School that has given me a firm foundation in the law, the wings to spread and fly in this profession. I had no doubt that when I graduated that I was prepared to serve my community.”

The Grand Honors Awards ceremony, presented by the National Alumni Association, is an annual highlight of Reunion. This year’s Reunion was held virtually, with a full week of events including: the State of the School Address, delivered by President and Dean Alicia Ouellette ’94; TGIF with virtual class meetups; live online campus tours; opportunities for alumni to join virtual classes; CLE programming; and more.

About the Trustees Gold Medal and the National Alumni Association Awards:

The Trustees Gold Medal, first awarded in 1966, is the highest accolade bestowed by Albany Law School and is given to an individual who has demonstrated a record of exemplary support and dedication to the advancement of Albany Law School. This award is presented by the Board of Trustees from nominations provided by the National Alumni Association Board of Directors. The distinguished list of Trustees Gold Medal honorees includes Warren M. Anderson ’40, Domenick L. Gabrielli ’36, Hon. Robert J. Sise ’49, Prof. David D. Siegel, Donald R. DeAngelis ’60, Hon. Harry J. D’Agostino ’55, Peter M. Pryor ’54, James N. Benedict ’74, E. Stewart Jones Jr. ’66, Edward P. Swyer, and Daniel P. Nolan ’78, to name a few. Hon. Bernard J. Malone Jr. ’72 received the Trustees Gold Medal in 2019.

The Distinguished Alumni Award, created in 1998 to recognize an individual’s continuous record of service to Albany Law School, is the highest honor bestowed by the National Alumni Association Board of Directors. The award criteria include, but are not limited to, outstanding professional accomplishment, sustained engagement, and continual support of Albany Law School. Past recipients include Donna E. Wardlaw ’77, Hon. Randolph F. Treece ’76, Hon. Joseph C. Teresi ’71, Hon. Mary O. Ricci ’83, Hon. Victoria A. Graffeo ’77, VADM Barry M. Costello ’81, Peter C. Kopff ’75, Frank L. Fernandez ’80, Hon. Katherine M. Sheehan ’94, Hon. Thomas J. Vilsack ’75, Lisa A. Whitney ’71, Stephen P. Younger ’82, Hon. Bernard J. Malone Jr. ’72, and Hon. Michael J. Garcia ’89. Hon. Leslie E. Stein ’81 received the Distinguished Alumni Award in 2019.

The Donald D. DeAngelis ’60 Excellence in Alumni Service Award, created in 1989, recognizes outstanding dedication and commitment to alumni, to the National Alumni Association, and to Albany Law School. It was named in honor of Donald D. DeAngelis, Class of 1960, who served as the first president of the National Alumni Association Board of Directors, a member of the Albany Law School Board of Trustees, and an associate editor of the Albany Law Review, among other contributions to the law school. Recipients join a notable list of past honorees, including: Richard D. Parsons ’71, Prof. Francis H. Anderson ’47, Dean Martin H. Belsky, Daniel P. Nolan ’78, Dianne R. Phillips ’88, John J. Yanas ’53, Hon. Erik E. Joh ’70, Prof. Michael J. Hutter Jr., Berta Hernandez-Truyol ’78, Hon. Andrew M. Cuomo ’82, Hon. Bernard J. Malone Jr. ’72, Donna E. Wardlaw ’77, Richard A. Reed ’81, Robert G. Lyman ’69, William E. Redmond ’55, Mary Ann A. Cody ’83, Barbara D. Cottrell ’84, John M. Bagyi ’96, Harold C. Hanson ’66, Larry P. Schiffer ’79, Ruth E. Leistensnider ’88, Keiki-Michael Cabanos ’97, and Amy J. Kellogg ’02. Robert A. Rausch ’94 received the DeAngelis Award in 2019.

The Outstanding Young Alumni Award, first presented in 1990, is given to alumni who have graduated within the past 10 years and have demonstrated extraordinary commitment to Albany Law School through consistent volunteerism and engagement. Previous honorees include Louis Cristo ’84, Stephen P. Younger ’82, Richard J. Miller Jr. ’89, Lee H. Wasserman ’83, Barbara D. Cottrell ’84, Gregory V. Serio ’86, Patricia E. Salkin ’88, Hon. John L. Sampson ’91, Christopher R. Lyons ’88, Hon. Glen T. Bruening ’89, Cynthia A. Platt ’89, Gina M. Stevens ’90, Monica L. Kreshik ’94, Hon. Richard M. Platkin ’93, Patricia D. DeAngelis ’94, Molly A. Wilkinson ’96, Hon. Christine M. Clark ’96, Keiki-Michael Cabanos ’97, Hon. Ryan T. Donovan ’01, Laura M. Jordan ’03, David A. Rozen ’10, Javid Afzali ’12, Matthew J. Laroche ’10, and Adam W. Silverman ’08. Samantha G. Howell ’10 received the Outstanding Young Alumni Award in 2019.

The Humanitarian Achievement Award, created in 2019, recognizes the extraordinary humanitarian contributions of an individual in the community who dedicates their time and legal expertise to improve quality of life and fight indifference, intolerance, and/or injustice through providing pro bono services, engaging in activism, supporting legal education, improving the delivery of legal services, and beyond. Hon. Elizabeth A. Garry ’90 was the inaugural recipient of this award last year.