Distinguished Alumni

The SIU Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes SIU Carbondale alumni who have achieved success and recognition since their graduation. Former recipients include leaders in the business industry, famous actors, and world-class athletes. Pictures and biographies of the selected alumni are located on the first floor of the SIU Rec Center in the Alumni Lounge. We want to congratulate all alumni who have been recognized and thank the many others who bring prestige and recognition to SIU every day.

If you would like to update or send new information to an existing nomination.You may also do so at anytime. For more information, please contact Kathy Dillard at kathyd@alumni.siu.edu or (618) 453-2408.

      Nomination Deadline is
August 7, 2015 at midnight

2014 Distinguished Alumni
Career Achievement Award: Nick P. Calamos
BA ’83 Economics
Calamos has endowed scholarship programs at Southern Illinois University and Northern Illinois University. Calamos has created opportunities for the SIU College of Business student investment group and has offered internships and externships for SIU students. In 2007, the Calamos’ established an endowment to fund the Nick P. and Kimberly K. Calamos College of Liberal Arts Endowed Scholarship to honor full-time undergraduate juniors and seniors.
Humanitarian Efforts Award: James T. Gildersleeve
BS ’72 Speech Communications
James T. Gildersleeve has demonstrated steadfast dedication and service to his alma mater for over 30 years, including 17 years on the SIU Alumni Association Board of Directors where he held the post of president for two years. In addition, Gildersleeve served 21 years on the SIU Foundation Board and was president for two years. In 2012, Gildersleeve began serving on the College of Agricultural Sciences Leadership Board. He has wholeheartedly committed time, talent, and resources to the overall good of the institution, and has done so while serving as president of Gildersleeve Fertilizer company, a major agricultural business four hours away from Carbondale.
Cultural Impact Award: Preston E. Jackson
BA ’69 Art
Preston Jackson, professor emeritus of sculpture at the School of the Art Institute in Chicago and owner of The Raven Gallery, home of the Contemporary Art Center in Peoria, Ill., creates bronze abstract figurative work and monumental steel and cast bronze sculpture as well as two-dimensional work. Jackson's sculptures and paintings are socially based. His pieces often reflect concerns about race and gender issues, injustice, war, violence, and ecology.
Young Alumni Achievement Award: Joshua T. Kauffman
BS ’06 Speech Communication
At SIU, Kauffman was on the Dean’s List every semester, majored in speech communication, and double minored in business administration and journalism. He was vice president-elect of Kellogg Hall council, vice president of National Communications Association Student Club, and community service chair for Public Relations Student Society of America. Kauffman participated in in the Honors program, Golden Key International and Gamma Beta Phi Honor Societies. He was an account executive for Pyramid Public Relations firm and a resident assistant in Boomer Hall.