All-University Award Recipients
Alumnus of the Year Award
DONALD W. LAYDEN, JR., ARTS '79, LAW '82
Anyone who knows him will tell you that Don lives the Marquette mission. Whether it's the pursuit of excellence in his professional life — he's a partner at Quarles & Brady and an operating partner with Baird Venture Partners — or how he and his wife, Mary Jo, Arts ’80, deepened their spirituality as members of the Ignatian Associates community or his leadership on a diverse group of nonprofit boards from here to the Philippines, Don builds relationships and makes connections that encourage the best in people.
DR. JOHN F. WAKERLY, ENG '70
Dr. John Wakerly’s illustrious career is the product of a brain that never stops. Case in point: He has 30-plus patents in telecommunications and networking technology and has authored eight engineering textbooks and more than 50 other publications. He also worked as a longtime consulting professor at Stanford, as chief technology officer of a division at Cisco Systems and as co-founder of a startup that was acquired by Google.
DONALD R. KOJIS, ARTS '61
Don smashed 10 Marquette basketball records (he was once the all-time scoring leader with 1,504 points and still ranks as the top career rebounder with 1,222 boards) before his 12 seasons in the NBA. But his most impressive stat: helping more than 9,000 people — and rising every year — through Whispering Winds, a 161-acre Catholic family camp and conference center he co-founded in the forested mountains outside San Diego.
KATHLEEN SCHLEIF ROTH, D.D.S., DENT '74
West Bend, Wis.
It’s difficult to think of a cause that Kathy might advocate for more than Marquette (other than perhaps regular flossing). She co-chairs the School of Dentistry’s Building for the Future Campaign and served on the School of Dentistry’s Advisory Council and Reunion Council. But her leadership isn’t limited to campus. She was also the first female president of the Wisconsin Dental Association and only the second female president of the American Dental Association.
Charlotte and Ron in one word: inspiring. This power couple juggles demanding careers — she’s a morning news anchor for Madison’s WISC-TV, and he’s the social media strategy director for Mid-West Digital Marketing — with parenting their two young boys. Yet they also make time for a nonprofit they founded that offers respite care for children with special needs.
GERI DODGE FOTSCH
Elm Grove, Wis.
The Fotsch family motto: “To whom much is given, much is expected.” And so Geri and her late husband, Bill, have fulfilled those words by donating generously to Engineering Hall and endowing an engineering scholarship in honor of Bill’s father. But perhaps their greatest gift to the university? Sending all eight of their children to Marquette.