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2012 Media Releases

The University of Denver Celebrates Founders Day

Mar. 8, 2012—The University of Denver has announced the recipients of the 2012 Founders Day Awards, which recognizes the outstanding accomplishments of alumni, faculty and staff. The 2012 Founders Day Gala, where the awards are given, will be held on March 8 at the Seawell Grand Ballroom in the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.

The following awards will be presented:

The Evans Award – Doug Scrivner (JD '77). Scrivner sits on various University committees and makes weekly flights from his California home to teach corporate governance risk and compliance at the Sturm College of Law. He developed the concept and provided initial funding for the Ved Nanda Center for International Law. The Evans Award is the University's highest honor.

The Ammi Hyde Award for Recent Graduate Achievement – Erik Myhren(MA '03). Myhren, an elementary school teacher in Denver for the past 14 years, introduced the sport of lacrosse to inner-city kids several years ago. The story is so powerful that it became the subject of the award-winning documentary City Lax: An Urban Lacrosse Story. Myhren also founded Connect the Kids, a nonprofit that introduces disadvantaged Denver kids to enrichment programs in areas ranging from arts and academics to sports and life skills.

Randolph P. McDonough Award for Service to Alumni – Emmit McHenry(BA '66). McHenry's many DU volunteer activities have included serving as president of the Alumni Association, mentoring staff and alumni, and serving on the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Alumni Board.

Distinguished Service to the University Award – Cathy Grieve(MA '72, PhD '79), DU's executive director of conferences, events and special programs. Grieve formerly served as a faculty member in the communications department, then director of the Office of Special Community Programs.  Grieve—who has worked at DU for more than 30 years—now oversees everything from Convocation to the upcoming presidential debate.

Community Service Award – Leslie Howard(EMBA '03). Howard and her husband, Gary, started the Gary and Leslie Howard Family Foundation, which provides scholarships to students who want to study business at the University of Denver or Colorado State University. The Howards also organize and run the annual Miracle on Ice hockey camp on the DU campus, serving children who live in Denver's housing projects.

Professional Achievement Award – Daphne Preuss(BS '85). Preuss, a former professor of molecular genetics and cell biology at the University of Chicago, is CEO and co-founder of Chromatin Inc. in Chicago. Among other things, the company is using proprietary technology to develop specialized types of sorghum that can be turned into high-energy biofuels to run vehicles and power plants.

The name of each award recipient will be added to the Wall of Honor in the Leo Block Alumni Center on the DU campus.