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The Daily Wildcat


UA alumni honored at award reception for achievements, dedication

Briana Sanchez
Briana Sanchez / Arizona Daily Wildcat Alumni Awards ceremony held Tuesday, recognizes two great almni and thier achievments while at the U of A and after graduation. Alsion Levine class of 1987 recieved the Global Achievment award and Lea Marques-Peterson class of 1992, recieved the Distinguished Citizen Award.

Two UA alumni were recognized at the first-ever UA Student Affairs Alumni Awards Reception on Tuesday night.

Alison Levine and Lea Marquez-Peterson were honored with a UA Alumni Association award at the banquet in the Student Union Memorial Center. With a theme of “Then and Now,” the banquet featured pictures of the honorees from when they attended the UA alongside images and pamphlets highlighting the improvements the university has made since those times.

The Alumni Association honors alumni who had a strong commitment to philanthropy while students at the UA and continued that devotion to service after they graduated, into their professional lives. Levine received the Global Achievement Award for her work in international humanitarianism, while Marquez-Peterson earned the Distinguished Citizen’s Award for her extensive career in civic leadership.

“It is important, institutionally, that we acknowledge and recognize alumni who are making an impact on the world. Getting alumni back, engaged, is really important,” said Carol Thompson, director of Alumni Outreach for Student Affairs. “These are incredible individuals, and we are very proud that we have the opportunity to recognize them.”

Levine was a member of Delta Gamma Sorority, the National Order of Omega, and the Panhellenic Association while at the UA and she graduated in 1987. After graduation, Levine went on to work on Wall Street at Goldman Sachs. She also founded the Climb High Foundation to promote social change in developing countries by helping women find work and financial independence through jobs as trekking guides and porters on mountaineering excursions.

Levine herself is one of the most decorated woman mountaineers in the world; she was team captain of the first American Women’s Everest Expedition and accomplished the Adventure Grand Slam by climbing the Seven Summits and skiing from the Arctic Circle to the North Pole and from Antarctica to the South Pole.

Levine has provided jobs for underprivileged women and has also helped educate more than 2,000 women by helping build schools in both Nepal and Uganda. She is also currently an adjunct professor at the United States Military Academy at West Point, founder of the Consulting Firm Daredevil Strategies and a board member of Fuqua/Coach K Center on Leadership and Ethics (COLE) at Duke University Additionally, she was featured on CNBC’s “The Future of Leadership.” Along with her extensive philanthropy and business endeavors, Levine also travels the country as a keynote speaker.

Levine’s life accomplishments have been featured in documentary films, magazines like as Oprah Magazine, National Geographic and Sports Illustrated, and on national television programs including The Today Show and Good Morning America.
During her acceptance speech Levine gave some brief advice to students.

“Be there for people, and be willing to extend a hand and ask the question, ‘What you can do to help a situation?’ and you’d be surprised at what type of impact you can have just by asking a question here or there,” Levine said.

Marquez-Peterson, the second awardee of the night, also has a long, distinguished list of accomplishments. While at UA she was a member of Phi Lambda Phrateres, Chimes Honorary and the Student Union Activities Board, and she was also a student recruiter.

Upon graduation in 1992, she became involved in business development with the Shell Oil Company. Soon after Marquez Peterson became the owner of the American Retail Corporation and since then she has been involved in Greater Tucson Leadership, which helps educate community members on leadership, development and civic engagement. She currently owns and is the president and CEO of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Other awards Marquez Peterson has received include the Entrepreneurial Fellows Award from UA’s McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship and the Woman of Influence Award by Inside Tucson Business.

Her most recent accomplishment was being appointed to serve as a member of the National Women’s Business Council by President Barack Obama, and as of now she is the only Latina and only Arizonan on the council.

Marquez-Peterson’s advice to students emphasized involvement outside of the classroom.

“I learned so much beyond my academic experience from negotiation, politics, to management skills, working with volunteers, event planning and how important business connections are,” Marquez-Peterson said. “The work and activities I did during the day, on the weekends, in the evenings, was so important.”

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