Alumni Award Honorees


This award recognizes outstanding academic, professional, personal, and community contributions that are representative of our graduates. It is presented to a graduate whose achievements may serve as a role model to inspire other graduates and students.
Kenneth-Maxwell Nance, ’15

Kenneth-Maxwell Nance, of New York, New York, is the director of the Maxwell Leadership Institute and a veteran of the Department of Defense. He has more than four decades of leadership experience and developed leadership’s grand theory (LGT). He is also a certified speaker, a coach, a trainer, a former teacher, and the director of and an investor with the Ministry of Strategy and Finance in Asia.

Nance is a youth counselor, a suicide counselor, a family counselor, a community outreach leader, and a minister. He also volunteers in poverty mitigation and global crises intervention. He is the recipient of the Korean National Police Award, the Technology Research and Development Award from Kyungpook National University, the General Louis C. Menetrey Distinguished Leader award, numerous national awards authorized by U.S. presidents, and myriad other awards, including those for military leadership.

In addition to his 2015 Bachelor of Professional Studies in Business and Management from Excelsior University (then Excelsior College), Nance holds an MBA from the University of Cumbria, a Public Leadership Credential from Harvard Kennedy School, and a doctorate in industrial and organizational psychology from Walden University.

Presented to an outstanding nursing graduate in recognition of the accomplishments and vision of Dr. Carrie Lenburg, coordinator of the Regents College Nursing Program from 1973 to 1990. It commemorates her commitment to helping nurses attain their educational and professional goals. This award is presented to a nurse who demonstrates a commitment to nursing education as well as academic and professional accomplishments in the field of nursing.
Krista L. Spencer, ’11

Krista L. Spencer, of Novi, Michigan, is a registered nurse with Select Specialty Hospital in northwest Detroit, Michigan. She rose through the nursing ranks from certified nursing assistant (CNA) to licensed practical nurse (LPN) to earning her associate degree in nursing, culminating in her current position as a registered nurse with a bachelor’s in nursing.
Spencer is a certified case manager and works in critical care nursing with state licenses in Michigan, New Mexico, and Nevada. She often mentors young nurses and has helped institute a CNA program at a local vocational school. Spencer has instructed patient care technicians, CNAs, and medical assistants in classroom, lab, and clinical settings. She started her own scholarship for LPN students at the college she attended for her practical nursing program and gives one scholarship per year to a student in that program called the Krista Gilbert LPN Award. She is also the author of “Twenty-First Century American Nursing Theories” and “The Covid Wars: One Nurse’s Experience Working in Covid ICU.”
In addition to her 2011 Associate in Applied Science in Nursing from Excelsior University (then Excelsior College), Spencer holds a Certificate of Practical Nursing from Schoolcraft College and a Bachelor of Applied Science in Nursing from Aspen University.

Named after Excelsior’s first president, this award is presented in recognition of outstanding public service and community involvement by a graduate.
Cynthia Hopkins, ’05

Cynthia Hopkins, of Pearland, Texas, is a supervisor at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. She had more than 30 years’ experience in public health, acute care, clinical care, and case management. She has consistently demonstrated a passion for driving positive change, advocating for meaningful causes, and making a tangible impact on the well-being of others.

Hopkins helps provide and facilitate resource connections for employed veterans at the center and actively volunteers in her community, including donating socks and throw blankets to seniors. She has organized health fairs for her church, a case management conference for nurses and social workers, painting projects, and a Christmas jazz concert for seniors at a nursing facility. Hopkins is also a community assistance partner and actively helps patients with limited funding by providing support for medications, medical equipment, and housing.

In addition to her 2005 Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Excelsior University (then Excelsior College), Hopkins has an MBA from Columbia Southern University. She is a recipient of the Roy Hatch Advocacy Award and has been RN of the year.


Alumni Achievement Award: Donald Donahue, ’81
Alumni Service Award: Sandra Butterfield, ’86
Carrie B. Lenburg Award: Linda Sue Hammonds, ’84
C. Wayne Williams Award: Matthew Kilner, ’18


Alumni Achievement Award: Keith LaShomb ’73 and Richard Russell ’78
Alumni Service Award: Dwayn M. Hanford ’05
Carrie B. Lenburg Award: Graig Straus ’08
C. Wayne Williams Award: Jason Faulk ’15


Alumni Achievement Award: LLoyd Conway, ’87
Alumni Service Award: Gregg Smith ’94
Carrie B. Lenburg Award: Cynthia Wanek’19
C. Wayne Williams Award: J. Scott Meier, ’02


Alumni Achievement Award: Brady McNulty ’11
Carrie B. Lenburg Award: Kaylin Dawson ’12, ’20
C. Wayne Williams Award: Kimberly Haley ’06


Alumni Achievement Award: Jeffrey Baker ’73, ’75
Carrie B. Lenburg Award: Greta Kostac ’91
C. Wayne Williams Award: Christine Robinson-Cooley ’97

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