2020 Alumni Awardees faces
YOUNG ALUMNI ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Ryan Pandya is the Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Perfect Day, a food company on a mission to create delicious animal-free dairy products, while leaving a kinder, greener footprint on the planet. Ryan studied Chemical & Biological Engineering at Tufts University, where he contributed to seminal research on tissue engineered meat at the Kaplan Lab before graduating and going on to work at MassBiologics, a small biopharmaceutical company in Boston, MA. He realized that the same technology used in the pharmaceutical industry could solve other world issues, including one that was particularly personal to him – the need for better dairy alternatives.

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YOUNG ALUMNI SERVICE AWARD

Derrick Young Jr. is a champion for social justice and equity. He is the Co-founder and Executive Director of Leadership Brainery, a non-profit organization addressing unequal access to advanced education and workforce leadership opportunities for minoritized communities.

Derrick's commitment to fostering equity stems back earlier than he remembers. It was heightened in college at Grambling State University when he received acceptance into the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Undergraduate Public Health Scholars Program. He learned that we must search fully upstream to find what is causing our most vast societal inequities. He identified systemic restrictions to accessing adequate information, education, and opportunities as the main factors.

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DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Bill Abrams is President of Trickle Up, leading the international development organization in its mission of helping people in extreme poverty and vulnerability advance their economic and social well-being. During his tenure, Trickle Up has helped more than 1 million people start on a pathway out of extreme poverty.

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William Abrams, A75, A11P, A16P photo

William Abrams, A75, A11P, A16P

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DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Julie Salamon is an American author, critic, and storyteller. Daughter of Czech immigrants who were Holocaust survivors, Julie grew up in Seaman, Ohio, a rural Appalachian village of 800, where her father was the town doctor. She is a graduate of North Adams (Ohio) High School, Tufts University [J75], and New York University School of Law [JD78].

 

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Julie Salamon, J75, A11P, A16P photo

Julie Salamon, J75, A11P, A16P

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DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Dr. Scharff is the CEO and Cofounder of The Fuller Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to groundbreaking reporting on women worldwide that raises awareness, exposes injustice and spurs accountability.

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Dr. Xanthe Scharff F06, F11 photo

Dr. Xanthe Scharff F06, F11

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DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Heather Sibbison is a Partner at Dentons, Washington, DC and serves as chair of the firm's Native American Law and Policy practice. In her practice she assists tribal governments address a wide range of legal and policy issues that often have deep roots in the historical mistreatment of tribal governments and their lands. Heather also has served in the federal government working on these same issues for the U.S. Department of the Interior and the U.S. Department of Justice. 

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V. Heather Sibbison, J83, A13P, A16P photo

V. Heather Sibbison, J83, A13P, A16P

DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD

Bertram Gresh Lattimore, Jr., F65, F70, PhD72 was an American Field Service (AFS) student to Switzerland his junior summer in high school and still stays in touch with his Swiss family. At the University of the South (Sewanee), he won a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship which enabled him to go to Tufts’ Fletcher School in 1964. At Fletcher two of the most important events in his life took place: he met his Jackson wife-to-be Nancy Hooker on a blind date, and he became interested in the Navy through naval officer Jim Patton. The following year, he graduated from Officer Candidate School in Newport, RI and served three years of active duty: two years aboard the aircraft carrier USS CORAL SEA (CVA-43) off Vietnam and taught a year at the Naval Academy. During that time, he also married Nancy in 1967, now nearly 54 years ago. The best decisions of his life!

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Bertram Gresh Lattimore, Jr., F65, F70, PhD72 photo

Bertram Gresh Lattimore, Jr., F65, F70, PhD72

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DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD

Alan Solomont currently serves as the Dean of the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts University. The only university-wide college of its kind, Tisch College studies and promotes the civic and political engagement of young people at Tufts University, in our communities, and in our democracy. Tisch College is the leading authority on youth voting in this country. In addition, Tisch College is home to the nation’s first major in Civic Studies on any university campus. Alan’s career has been marked by his commitment to political activism, public service, and organizing for the greater good. He was appointed by President Obama to serve as the U.S. Ambassador to Spain and Andorra from 2009-2013. Alan is the former Chairman of the Corporation for National and Community Service. He was first appointed to the board by President Clinton in 2000, reappointed by President George W. Bush in 2007 and elected chair in 2009. He also served as the National Finance Chair of the Democratic National Committee. Alan is a dedicated Tufts Jumbo, with experience in the roles of student, Instructor, Tufts parent, Trustee, and Board Chair.

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Alan D. Solomont, A70, A08P photo

Alan D. Solomont, A70, A08P

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ACTIVE CITIZENSHIP AND PUBLIC SERVICE AWARD

Lee Gelernt is a lawyer at the ACLU's national office. He is widely recognized as one of the country’s leading public interest lawyers and has argued dozens of groundbreaking civil rights cases during his career, including in the U.S. Supreme Court and virtually every federal court of appeals. He has testified before both houses of Congress. His recent work is featured in the documentary “The Fight.” He is also an adjunct professor at Columbia Law School, and for several years was a visiting professor at Yale Law School.

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Lee Gelernt, A84 photo

Lee Gelernt, A84

ACTIVE CITIZENSHIP AND PUBLIC SERVICE AWARD

Nina Smith is the founding Chief Executive Officer of GoodWeave International, the leading global NGO working to stop child labor in global supply chains. GoodWeave brings visibility and rights to workers; restores childhoods; and provides assurance to companies and consumers that carpets and home textiles they purchase with the GoodWeave certification label are produced free from child labor. 

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Nina Smith, J89

Nina Smith, J89

CAREER SERVICES AWARD

Chiamaka is a double Jumbo. She currently works as an Analog Design Engineer at Intel Corporation in Massachusetts. Prior to that, she had co-op'ed/interned at Bose Corporation and Analog Devices, Inc. While at Tufts, she belonged to several student organizations, participated in various extracurricular activities and was a member of a research lab. Chiamaka loves a good excuse to solve problems and therefore takes a keen interest in anything masked or represented as a problem. To her, Engineering is a mindset and one could reach into the "toolboxes" to solve different issues regardless of the realm especially given the interdisciplinary world of today.

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Chiamaka Chima, E14, EG16 photo

Chiamaka Chima, E14, EG16

SERVICE CITATION

Cynthia Valianti Corbett, a native of Marlborough, Massachusetts, is the Founder and Director of the Cynthia Corbett Gallery and the Young Masters Art Prize & an international contemporary art gallery which has an annual exhibition programme and regularly exhibits at contemporary art fairs.

Cynthia trained as an art historian at Christie’s Education before establishing her gallery in 2004. Prior to this, she had a high-profile career as an international economist specialising in emerging markets and was the principle architect of the debt conversion plans for most of Sub-Saharan Africa in the 1980s. Cynthia was also a regular commentator in the financial broadsheets in both New York and London. She relocated from New York City to London in 1986.

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Cynthia Valianti Corbett, F78 photo

Cynthia Valianti Corbett, F78

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SERVICE CITATION

Raphael Hui is a graduate of the class of 2006, having majored in Economics and International Relations, and is now a corporate lawyer in Hong Kong. 

His favorite Tufts memories would be spending time with fellow Tufts students and colleagues attending student organization activities, including Tufts Ballroom competitions, themed gatherings with the many culture groups, as well as the many friendships made and kept through the years.

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Raphael Y. Hui, A06 photo

Raphael Y. Hui, A06