Campus Life

University of West Florida presents 2013 Alumni Awards

The University of West Florida Alumni Association named its 2013 Alumni Award recipients during the Annual Awards Program & Celebration held April 6 during Festival on the Green. The awards are given each year in recognition of those who work to help and promote the university, the alumni association and the more than 69,000 UWF alumni. Mollye Barrows, ’96, B.A. Communication Arts, served as the program’s emcee. The 2013 award recipients are as follows:

Alumni Service Award

Scott Ramsey, ’87, B.S. Marketing, served on the Alumni Board of Directors for two years in the position of Director at Large within Northwest Florida. During his time on the Alumni Board, Ramsey volunteered at several events such as Career Countdown, Meet the Pros, and Gallery of History. He continues to serve the university as a mentor in the UWF College of Business Executive Mentor Program. He also served on the College of Business Steering Committee for the grand opening of the new, state-of-the-art Education Center in 2012.

Friend of the University

HomeRun Holdings has made significant contributions to the School of Science and Engineering and to UWF students by offering internships, co-ops and entry-level career positions.  Their reputation as a wonderful place to work continues to grow among the UWF student and alumni network.

Publix has supported the university as a Department of Intercollegiate Athletics Corporate Partner for three years.  They donate monetarily to support UWF student-athletes and donate in-kind to support various promotions held at UWF.  Publix created the Publix Spirit Challenge to encourage students to attend home basketball games and earn prizes based on group size and spirit. In the Publix store, UWF merchandise and apparel are sold and UWF athletics schedule cards are available at the registers.

Honorary Alumnus

Dr. Kyle Marrero joined the University of West Florida in Fall 2005 as the Director of the School of Fine and Performing Arts and Chair of the Department of Music. In August 2009, Marrero became the Vice President for University Advancement, where he currently leads a staff of 60 full-time employees overseeing the university’s integrated marketing communications efforts; the development and alumni relations’ activities; the West Florida Historic Preservation Inc. (WFHPI); and WUWF. In addition, Marrero oversees the UWF Foundation, whose current endowment investment pool exceeds $60 million. As the institution’s chief philanthropic officer, he successfully led the final stages of the $39,275,411 Creating Great Futures capital campaign, which surpassed its goal of $35 million.

With a clear focus on the importance of student life at UWF, Marrero has been supportive of various student life initiatives, including chairing the Football Feasibility Committee and serving on the Student Life Implementation Team, which formed both the Sword and Shield Council and Football Founders groups. Recently, Marrero was appointed President of the University of West Georgia and will leave the university this summer.

Outstanding Young Alumnus

John Adams, ’99 B.S.B.A. Management & ’02 B.S.B.A. Accounting. Adams continued to pursue his dream of becoming an attorney and attended the University of Florida Levin College of Law, graduating magna cum laude in 2005. He is a Shareholder/Director with Emmanuel, Sheppard & Condon.  He practices in all areas of commercial litigation and has successfully tried cases in Florida State Courts, Bankruptcy Court, Federal Court, and Alabama State Court.  Adams has made a commitment to serving the Pensacola community by serving as a board member for Junior Achievement of Northwest Florida and providing pro bono legal counsel.

Jason Lasure, ‘01 B.S.B.A. Management. Lasure is the founder of The Analyst Group, LLC, a local company that provides numerous workplace management services, including the analysis, forecasting and management of an overall workforce strategy, to more than 90 companies in the U.S. and Canada. He created the company with a desire to provide a place of employment for UWF graduates. Today, approximately 70 percent of the staff at The Analyst Group are UWF alumni or students.

Lasure has also made a tremendous dedication to his community.  He is currently serving on the Downtown Redevelopment Board in Milton.  Jason is in charge of a USDA-certified food pantry that provides emergency food to about 500 families per quarter in the Milton area.  Supervising this pantry is one the duties he fulfills as a deacon in charge of the Benevolence Program at the Margaret Street Church of Christ in Milton.

Distinguished Alumnus

Molly Murphy, ’91 B.A. Accounting Information Systems. Murphy’s primary focus is providing audit, accounting and consulting services throughout the Southeast. She was named one of three female shareholders in the CPA firm of Saltmarsh, Cleaveland & Gund.  Murphy has many professional affiliations including the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Florida Institute of Certified Public accountants, and North Carolina Association of Certified Public Accountants. Molly has also made significant contributions to the Pensacola community. She serves on the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Florida Board and is a member of the Pensacola Bay Area Impact 100.

Molly served as the 2012 Leadership Pensacola class project chair and facilitator.  The class project “Operation Hope” raised more than $200,000 to completely renovate both the USO at Pensacola International Airport on NAS Pensacola.

Dr. P.S. Ruckman Jr., ’86 B.A. Philosophy & Political Science. Ruckman is a nationally recognized scholar in the area of executive clemency. He is a professor of political science at Rock Valley College in Rockford, Ill.

Ruckman has completed an extensive body of work on clemency and is the “go-to” political scientist for federal, state and international clemency controversies.  He is frequently consulted as an expert of pardon policy by the media, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal and numerous other top newspapers.

Ruckman is a member of the American Political Science Association, as well as the Midwest and Southern Political Science Associations.  He was most recently named Faculty Member of the Year for 2011-2012. This honor follows a long history of personal accomplishments.

Chambered Nautilus Award of Merit

John Switzer, ’89 B.S. Management and Charlie Switzer, ’81 B.A. Economics. For more than 15 years, J. Switzer and C. Switzer have been loyal supporters of UWF.  They have committed their resources, their time and their vision to the university. In 2001, they established individual scholarship endowments in Business Ethics. They also created the UWF College of Business Switzer Brothers Professorship to provide assistance to visiting professors, guest lecturers and/or faculty.

The brothers supported the new College of Business Education Center by making an unrestricted gift to the name Switz Café.  They expressed their vision that the café would become a meeting place for future College of Business students.

Both C. Switzer and J. Switzer have served as volunteer members of the College of Business Advisory Council. Their support, whether financial or advisory, continues to have a positive effect on the university, its students, faculty and staff.

For additional information on the 2013 Alumni Award winners or to learn more about upcoming alumni events, please visit