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Distinguished Alumni Awards Sac State Alumni Association

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Distinguished Alumni Awards


Nominations for the 2023 Distinguished Alumni Awards are now being accepted. As you think of alumni that you would like to see honored with an award, please review the four award types to frame your submission. The nomination deadline is Friday, May 5, at 5:00 PM.

Please contact Jennifer Barber at with any questions.

Submit a nomination

NOTE: Current Alumni Association Board Directors, Chapter Leaders or others in key Association leadership positions are not eligible for consideration during their active term.

About the Awards

Each year since 1972, the Sacramento State Alumni Association honors accomplished alumni and friends through the Distinguished Alumni Awards (DAA). The Order of the Hornet Award was presented from 1972-1985. In 1987, the awards became known as the Distinguished Service Awards, periodically giving Order of the Hornet (*) designation to selected recipients.

Distinguished Service Award

Given in recognition of professional achievements and community service. Nominees must have achieved prominence in their chosen field and brought distinction to the University and/or their community through their accomplishments.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Given to alumni for exceptional career achievements, exceptional contributions to the campus and community, and for setting high standards of excellence in their personal and professional lives.

Honorary Alumni Awards

Given to friends of the University who have demonstrated a close affinity to the campus and who have rendered exceptional support and leadership to the University or Association.

Rising Star Award

Given to a recent graduate of Sacramento State who has made outstanding contributions professionally, to the community or to Sacramento State.

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Distinguished Alumni Award Honorees - 2022

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Distinguished Service Award

  1. Francesca Halbakken ’79 (Civil Engineering), Retired Assistant City Manager, Sacramento City

  2. Lois Harper Mattice ’87, MS ’94 (Physical Education), Emeritus Faculty and Retired Associate Athletics Director and Senior Woman Administrator, Sacramento State

  3. Lisa Wrightsman ’05 (Communication Studies), Managing Director, Street Soccer USA

  4. Dr. Whitney Yamamura ’84 (Business Administration), MA ’91 (Economics), Chancellor, Coast Community College District

Lifetime Achievement Award

  • Don Nottoli ’78 (Government/Journalism), District 5 Supervisor, Sacramento County

Rising Star Award

  • Liku T. Amadi ’13, Esq. (Communication Studies), Anasa Law Firm PC

Event & Silent Auction Information

Distinguished Alumni Awards

Date TBD, at 5:30 p.m.
Harper Alumni Center | Sacramento State

Join us as we honor exceptional alumni for professional achievement and contributions to the community. Honorees represent the University's values in action. The event starts with a reception followed by dinner and the awards presentation. This year the silent auction supporting scholarships will be hosted online and open to all to participate, even if they are not attending the event.


2022 Sponsorships

Sponsor logos

Platinum Sponsor: Lucas Public Affairs

Gold Sponsors: Atlas Disposal | SMUD | JabberGym

Silver Sponsors: River City Bank | SAFE Credit Union | Tri Counties Bank | Zenith Insurance

Sacramento State Sponsors: Academic Affaris | College of Arts & Letters | College of Business | College of Continuing Education | College of Engineering & Computer Science | College of Health and Human Services | College of Social Sciences & Interdisciplinary Studies | Office of the President

If you are interested in sponsorship opportunities for the 2022 Distinguished Alumni Awards program, please contact Kelly Siefkin at or (916) 278-5096.

Download our 2022 sponsorship opportunities