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Three Alumni Receive Distinguished Alumni Award


Three Alumni Receive Distinguished Alumni Award

Distinguished alumni Joseph L. Dionne, Margaret Mary Fitzpatrick, and Barbara Loomis Jackson were honored this year at a dinner at the Columbia-Princeton Club.

More than 100 alumni, their guests, and other members of the TC community gathered at The Columbia-Princeton Club for a dinner honoring three distinguished alumni. This year's honorees were Margaret Mary Fitzpatrick (M.Ed. 1982, Ed.D. 1986); Joseph L. Dionne (Ed.D. 1965); and Barbara Loomis Jackson (M.A. 1967).

TC President Arthur Levine addressed the gathering saying, "This evening we are celebrating the most important thing that Teachers College does-we prepare leaders-people whose purpose it is to improve the quality of education in the world."

Before reading the citations of the three honored alumni, Levine described them as "three people whose accomplishments amount to no less than repairing the world."

"Thank you," he said to the awardees, "for reflecting the values we hold important. Thank you for being standard bearers."

Dionne, the first to receive his citation, began his career as a teacher and guidance counselor in a public school before joining The McGraw-Hill Companies in 1967. Dionne was vice president for research and development at Educational Development Laboratories, a division of McGraw-Hill. For 30 years, he oversaw many different areas of the company, and in 1981 was appointed president and chief operating officer.

Under his leadership, editors and managers at McGraw-Hill were encouraged to find new ways to package facts from print into electronic information products.

As a business leader committed to improving America's education system, Dionne was invited to testify before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Education, Arts and Humanities in 1995. He also worked toward education reform at the elementary and secondary school levels as a member of the Business Roundtable's Education Task Force.

An alumnus of the Department of Curriculum and Teaching, Dionne has served on the TC Board of Trustees, the President's Advisory Council and the Alumni Council.

In reading Dionne's citation, Levine said, "We at Teachers College are proud to have you work with us as an ongoing participant in our mission to train the future leaders of education."

Fitzpatrick, whose research focused on the role of higher education in serving society and the engagement of students in fulfilling that responsibility, is President and CEO of St. Thomas Aquinas College. In the years leading up to her current position, she has trained professionals who work with young people from elementary school through college, as well as developing, coordinating and promoting the programs that help them reach those young people.

Her leadership has earned her numerous honors and awards. In 1991, U. S. Catholic magazine named Fitzpatrick "Catholic Woman of the Year." In 1994, the New York State Education Department presented her with the "Trailblazer" award. This year, she received an award from Venture, a non-profit agency providing services for adults and children with developmental disabilities.

In speaking about Jackson, Levine said, "Your career has spanned the educational spectrum. It has been said that to whom much is given, much is expected. You have truly lived up to your end of that equation."

For more than 40 years Jackson has been involved in educating, administrating and evaluating programs designed for students and educators in various capacities. She has headed undergraduate teacher education programs at Morgan State University, served as liaison to the Head Start Program in Baltimore City, and served as Director of Evaluation for the National Urban League in a number of cities around the country.

Currently, Jackson is Chair of the Division of Administration, Policy and Urban Education at the Graduate School of Education at Fordham University. There she focuses on the preparation and experience of black women leaders in education and mentors doctoral students who are studying to the administrators.

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