Annually Joliet Junior College and the Foundation honor recipients of three prestigious awards, JJC Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award, Susan H. Wood Hall of Fame Award and the J.D. Ross Extraordinary Service Award.
Here you will find criteria, nomination and past recipient information on the two alumni based awards.
JJC Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award
This award is the highest honor bestowed upon a Joliet Junior College alumna/alumnus by the Alumni Association. It is presented at the annual Night of Stars to those alumni who have demonstrated outstanding success in their chosen field and provided humanitarian service to society. Nominees must be living at the time of their nomination.
The JJC Alumni Association is now accepting nominations for the Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award. Do you know someone who has:
- Earned a degree from Joliet Junior College?
- Demonstrated outstanding success and distinction in their field?
- Provided humanitarian service to society?
- Demonstrated an interest in support of higher education, especially JJC?
This award is the highest honor bestowed upon alumni of Joliet Junior College by Alumni Relations on behalf of Joliet Junior College. Nominees must be living at the time of their nomination.
If so, please consider nominating him/her for the Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award. To nominate someone, please fill out the Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award nomination form.
Past Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award Recipients
Dr. Judy Mitchell '98 - President Emerita - Joliet Junior College
2020 / 2021
William R. Conte '85 - Senior Portfolio Manager, Senior Vice President - Wealth Advisor
Dr. Dennis Haggerty '66 - Retired Podiatrist
Harry Resis '65 - Private Investor
Jay D. Bergman '68 - President and Ceo - Petco Petroleum Corp.
Ed Czerkies '57 - Businessman and Philanthropist
Rev. Dr. Lester Brown '98 - JJC Criminal Justice Adjunct Professor
Dave Westphal '66 - Agricultural Business Development
Robert Garza '83 - First Sergeant, USMCR, Retired
Dr. Robert Larson '76 - Optometrist
The Honorable Raymond Bolden '53 - Retired Circuit Judge
Bob Zak '81 - Radio Personality
Ronald M. Whitaker '69 - Member of the first BOT; Retired, Ronald M. Whitaker and Company
Beulah Hoffer '32 - Former Chair of Women's Physical Education at JJC
Philip Nelson '78 - President of Illinois Farm Bureau
Dr. Daniel Gutierrez '58 - Internal Medicine Physician; Medical Director
Robert Baca '78 - Professor or Music
Dr. Charles O. Warthen '58 - Former Dept. Chair of Technology at JJC
Charles Morgan '91 - JJC Music Professor, Director of JJC Band
Richard Brandolino '59 - Retired, JJC Administrator
Larry Walsh '68 - Will County Executive, Former Illinois Senator
Rose Mancuso - Pharmacist, Owner REMCO Medical
Katherine Dunham '28 - Award presented posthumous
Revolutionized the world of dance, Dunham's intellectual, artistic and humanitarian contributions were extraordinary.
Edmund C. Puddicombe '34
Returned to JJC in 1938 as a teacher of biological sciences. Sponsored the Students of Medical Sciences for 25 years.
Dr. Thomas Streitz '52
Practicing Dentist, instrumental in Founding the JJC Alumni Association in 1970 and was the Association's first president.
Vera Smith '24
Retired JJC English Instructor
JJC's first Director of Admissions and Records
Anthony Gutierrez '48
Retired Assistant Principal of Joliet Central
John H. Weitendorf, Sr. '42 (deceased)
Owner of Town & Country Realtors
James Stephenson, Jr. '56
Founder of Kinetic Systems Corp., Lockport, IL
Dr. Curtis J. Crawford '71
President and CEO of ZiLOG, Inc.
Dr. Richard Tarizzo '51
Retired Vascular Surgeon, Joliet, IL
Richard L. Joutras '47 (deceased)
Chairman, Bradley Printing & FNW Bank
Bernard J. Kestel '57
Engineering Specialist, Argonne Nat'l. Laboratory
Major General Daniel J. Manning '31 (deceased)
Eng. Executive and WWII Veteran
Joseph Burla '55
Dr. Earle Stellwagen '53
Hon. Julian E. Hughes '42 (deceased)
Dr. Stanley G. Rousonelos M.D. '47 (deceased)
Dr. Joseph McFadden '52
St. Thomas University, First Lay President, Houston, TX
Dr. Thomas Peyla M.D. '54
Russell E. Wunderlich '31 (deceased)
James Agazzi '60
Art Director and Emmy Award Winner
Hon. William Caisley '60
Retired Circuit Court Judge
Franklin Brewster, Sr. '36 (deceased)
Int'l. Tech. Adviser for Motorola
John Barnes '41
Retired Vice President Eastman Kodak Company
Dr. John Radke '56
Clinical Professor of Medicine
Dr. Barbara Smith '60
Assistant Professor, Food Science and Nutrition Department
Dr. Edward Schweizer '53
Raymond M. Standahar '41 (deceased)
Government Exec. Dept. of Defense
Dr. David Imig '59
Herbert Trackman '31 (deceased)
Dr. William Shannon '32 (deceased)
Dr. Wayne Watson '66
President, Kennedy-King College
Hon. Susan Pierson-Sonderby '67
Judge, U.S. Bankruptcy Court
Dr. Donald Holt '52
Oscar Kreimeier '27 (deceased)
Alan Kehlet '49
George Sangmeister '51 (deceased)
Retired Illinois Congressman
Phyllis Reynolds Naylor '53
Author and 1992 Newbery Medal Winner
B. Leighten Wellman '28 (deceased)
Edward C. Zajac '36
Retired Computer Administrator
Dr. John C. Houbolt '38
Chief Aeronautical Scientist, LaRC, NASA, (retired). Best known as developer of the LOR concept for putting men on the moon and returning them safely to Earth.
Dr. Arthur Toy '37 (deceased)
Chemist, holding more than 80 patents
Susan H. Wood Hall of Fame Award
This award was established to recognize a non-alumna/alumnus of Joliet Junior College who is a current or former faculty member, administrator or friend who has served Joliet Junior College in an exceptional way. Susan H. Wood organized and fostered the growth of the Joliet Junior College Alumni Association. This award is presented at the annual Night of the Stars, formerly Alumni Brunch.
The JJC Alumni Association is now accepting nominations for the Susan H. Wood Hall of Fame Award.
- This award was established to recognize a non-alumna/alumnus of Joliet Junior College who is a current or former faculty member, administrator or friend who has served Joliet Junior College in an exceptional way.
To nominate someone for the Susan H. Wood Hall of Fame Award, please fill out the online Susan H. Wood Hall of Fame Award nomination form.
Past Susan H. Wood Hall of Fame Recipients
William O'Connor, JJC Business Department Chair
Mike Brncick, Retired JJC Orthotics & Prosthetics Instructor, Advisor, Coordinator
2020 / 2021
Peter L. Neff (posthumous), Professor Emeritus, English / World Languages
Dr. Robert Marchink, JJC English/World Languages Professor
Robert Wunderlich, JJC Board of Trustees
William Johnson, JJC Agricultural Sciences Professor
Joe Milosevich, JJC Fine Arts Professor
Professor Emeritus Ted Thompson
Professor Emeritus Dr. Arthur A. Wagner
Professor Emeritus Silas Ellingson
Professor Emeritus Patrick Asher
Dr. Cecil Ingmire
Professor Emeritus Paul Lester
Professor Emeritus Curtis Hieggelke
Dr. Emily Zabrocki
Dr. John Peterson
J. D. Ross
John F. Corradetti
Dr. William Zales
Dr Robert Sterling
Dr. Carolyn T. Engers
Clarence F. Schmitz
Dr. Peter Nichols
John M. Sayre
Grace A. Brewer
Walter F. Zaida
William R. Glasscock
Vera Stellwagen Smith
Harry D. and Emily Lennon Leinenweber
Kenneth P. Parker
Grayce M. Stadler
Edmund C. Puddicombe
Elmer W. Rowley
Susan H. Wood
J.D. Ross Extraordinary Service Award
To make a nomination for the J.D. Ross Extraordinary Service Award, please fill out the nomination form below or contact Kelly Rohder-Tonelli, Executive Director, Communications & Marketing at 815-280-2915.
For more information on this award or nomination questions, please contact Kelly Rohder-Tonelli, Executive Director, Communications & Marketing at 815-280-2915.
JJC Foundation Distinguished Partners in Excellence Award
This annual award will recognize an exemplary employer, business or industry group that has demonstrated decisive involvement and firm commitment to advancing the mission of both Joliet Junior College and the JJC Foundation.
- Promotes partnership between JJC and business and industry that advances economic prosperity of the community/district and the competitiveness of the workforce.
- Provides on-campus and/or workplace opportunities that engage students.
- Provides financial resources available to JJC and/or its students.
Past JJC Foundation Distinguished Partners in Excellence Award
2020 / 2021