Alumni National Awards

J. William and Mary Diederich College of Communication
Award Recipients


Saturday, April 28
Reception: 10 a.m.; Brunch: 10:30 a.m.
Alumni Memorial Union
1442 W. Wisconsin Ave., Marquette University campus

ThompsonCommunicator of the Year Award
Barbara Weeks Thompson, Jour ’74

Waukesha, Wis.

As the founder of The Roberts Group, one of the first marketing firms to focus on serving the health care industry, Barbara has been a trailblazer for female entrepreneurs.

BrownByline Award
Dr. Sybril M. Brown, Comm ’90

Hendersonville, Tenn.

Sybril is an Emmy Award-winning multimedia journalist, educator, author, international speaker and presenter with an interesting take on the internet. She’s written a book that compares today’s most innovative network with another from the early- to mid-19th century: the Underground Railroad.

SturProfessional Achievement Award
Dr. Heather M. Stur, Comm ’98, Grad ’03

Hattiesburg, Miss.

As a professor of U.S. foreign relations and military history, Heather draws on her undergraduate studies in journalism and history to provide historical context for contemporary diplomatic and military issues. Among other accolades, her work earned her a Fulbright scholarship in 2013 to teach international relations in Vietnam.

RichardsYoung Alumna of the Year Award
Lori Van Pay Richards, Comm ’02

Shorewood, Wis.

As president of Wisconsin’s largest independent public relations agency, Lori leads clients through crises, campaigns and communication initiatives.


SantoianniJames T. Tiedge Memorial Award
Jenna M. Santoianni, Comm ’06

Los Angeles, Calif.

A Marquette student or graduate looking to break into the film and television business in Los Angeles would do well to connect with Jenna. The television executive for Sonar Entertainment is all too happy to offer support, resume tips and even her couch as a crash pad.