Daemen College honored the accomplishments of five outstanding graduates at the college’s 2020 Distinguished Alumni Awards, which was held on Oct. 2 in a live streamed ceremony.
“We are pleased to celebrate these exceptional alums who made their mark on their professions, the community, and the college,” said Daemen President Gary Olson. “They serve as an inspiration to our students by exemplifying all that is possible with a Daemen education.”
The highlight of the awards ceremony was Olson recognizing Anibal Soler, Jr. ’00 with the Distinguished Alumna Award, the highest honor bestowed to a graduate. The award recognizes a graduate who has achieved distinction in their career and in the community and has shown outstanding dedication to the college.
Soler, a West Seneca resident, is superintendent of schools for the Batavia City School District, having previously served as associate superintendent of strategic alignment and Innovation for Buffalo Public Schools. He also supervised Buffalo’s district athletics, the adult education division, and the district’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative.
Other 2020 honorees, who were chosen by the college’s National Alumni Board of Governors, include:
- Advancement in Career – Dr. Elizabeth D. Liddy ’66 of Syracuse, who most recently served as dean of Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies and also held the role of interim provost at the university.
- Dedication to the College – After a long tenure at Daemen, Buffalo native Adriane Z. Williams ’01 is now serving as vice principal of college and career at Washington Leadership Academy, a public charter high school in Washington, D.C. She resides in Rockville, Md.
- Service to the Community – Mary L. Sage ’02 of Clarence, a leader in the health care field for more than 50 years, served as a nurse at United Memorial Medical Center in Batavia and is active with several organizations in the community.
- Graduate of the Last Decade – Joseph P. Gravino ’13 of North Tonawanda, co-owner of Elite Spine and Extremity Physical Therapy in Amherst, N.Y. which he co-founded with fellow physical therapist Dr. Michael Brown.
In addition to this ceremony, a separate online celebration featured a brief video showcasing Daemen’s 2020 Distinguished Alumni Award recipients.