Notable alumni, students honored at Alumni Awards Gala

Notable alumni, students honored at Alumni Awards Gala

Notable alumni, students honored at Alumni Awards Gala

Honorees for the 38th Annual Alumni Awards Gala: (from left) Mario Giron-Ábrego, Cynthia Kawa, Nancy J. Lavelle, America Tang, Guillermo Zuñiga, Olga Shalygin Orloff, Marx L. Cazenave II, Wayne A. Warner, Pamela Wiley-Wells and Alan Davidner.

A Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer, an archeologist-in-training and leading business executives were among the notables honored at the Alumni Association’s 38th Annual Alumni Awards Gala in October.

The Alumni Association’s premiere event recognized nine alumni and two students who got their start at Cal State L.A. and have made significant contributions to their fields and the community.

Alumna of the Year Olga Shalygin Orloff ’77 has been a critical care nurse, photojournalist and documentary filmmaker, whose coverage of the resignation of Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev earned her the Pulitzer Prize in 1992.

Other honorees include:

University Service Award: Guillermo Zuñiga ’86, president of Grifols Biologicals, Inc.

Distinguished Alumna, College of Arts and Letters: Cynthia Kawa ’79, ’82, CEO of New Horizons.

Distinguished Alumna, College of Business and Economics: America Tang ’79, CEO of Ace Fence Company and founder and CEO of Lending Hope Foundation.

Distinguished Alumna, Charter College of Education: Nancy J. Lavelle ’71, ’77, Ph.D., president and CEO of Total Education Solutions, Inc. and founder and president of Institute for the Redesign of Learning.

Distinguished Alumnus, College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology: Alan Davidner ’73, former president of endOclear®, LLC.

Distinguished Alumna, College of Health and Human Services: Pamela Wiley-Wells ’75, Ph.D., president of Los Angeles Speech and Language Therapy Center, Inc.

Distinguished Alumnus, College of Natural and Social Sciences: Marx L. Cazenave II ’62, cofounder and former CEO of Progress Investment Management Company.

Distinguished Faculty Alumnus: Fred Daneshgaran ’84, ’85, Ph.D., chair and professor of Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering, Cal State L.A.

Outstanding Graduate Student: Mario Giron-Ábrego ’10, ’13, Master of Arts degree in anthropology, Bachelor of Arts degree in anthropology.

Outstanding Senior Student: Wayne A. Warner ’13, Bachelor of Science degrees in biochemistry and microbiology.


Election information online at Legislative Action Center

Election Day is right around the corner. Whether you’re still forming an opinion on a candidate or looking to be more active in the political process, the Cal State L.A. Legislative Action Center provides information and tips to help you become a savvy voter.

The Alumni Association at Cal State L.A. maintains the virtual center to provide information on current bills, key votes, elections and issues that influence the future of higher education in California. The site aims to inform the body politic while energizing alumni and the campus community to be active in ensuring higher education remains a priority for elected officials.

If you’re looking to become more involved, sign up for the Action E-List to receive alerts when your efforts in a letter-writing campaign or other activity can make a critical difference.

Visit the Legislative Action Center at or follow the links from the Alumni Association website for more information.