Distinguished Alumni Awards

The purpose of the Distinguished Alumni Awards is to honor alumni who have enhanced the reputation of the University through their actions, hard work and achievement.

Distinguished Alumni Awards Event Information


Do you know an extraordinary alumna or alumnus? Nominate a candidate for a Distinguished Alumni Award! All nominees will remain eligible within the specified award category for a total of three years.


2019 Achievement Award

Jessica Davis

Jessica Davis, '01

Jessica Davis is a mathematics teacher and an advisor to the Black Pride Organization and Mathematics Team at South St. Paul Secondary School. In May 2019, she was named as Minnesota’s Teacher of the Year by the state’s 86,000-member statewide educators union. The prior year, she was named Teacher of the Year by South Saint Paul’s Local Union. Davis possesses an educational philosophy deeply rooted in student advocacy. She believes the student voice is an essential cornerstone often missing in the revolution of our educational system. When she was nominated for Minnesota’s Teacher of the Year, she was described as an educator who is modeling for students that equity needs to be deliberate and intentional. Davis holds a bachelor’s in human biology with a minor in chemistry from Minnesota State University, Mankato and a mathematics teaching license and master’s in teaching from Hamline University.

2019 Young Alumni Award

Brett Anderson

Brett Anderson, '11

Brett Anderson, vice president of Health and Clinical Services with Ecumen, leads Ecumen-wide healthcare services with responsibility for ensuring quality of care, clinical outcomes, customer satisfaction, cost of care efficiency and regulatory compliance. Anderson began his career at Ecumen in 2014 as the clinical director at Ecumen Centennial House in Apple Valley (After serving as an Ecumen graduate student intern), he was promoted to the role of regional nurse consultant supporting new business development and national management contracts (In 2016). Before joining Ecumen, Anderson served as an adjunct instructor at Minnesota State Mankato and as an Instructor at Saint Paul College. He also previously owned and operated CareLogix Nursing Solutions and provided clinical and operational consulting and support to area health care organizations. Governor Mark Dayton appointed Anderson to serve on the Board of Trustees for the Minnesota State System from 2011-2013. He has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Minnesota State Mankato and Master of Science in Nursing Leadership from Metropolitan State University. He is a registered nurse, a certified public health nurse and board-certified nurse executive.

2019 Harold J. Fitterer Service Award

Dr. Stephen Wilcox

Dr. Stephen Wilcox, '82

Stephen E. Wilcox is a Professor of Finance at Minnesota State University, Mankato and has been employed at the University since 1991. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1992 and became a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) that same year. Stephen has also been employed as a consultant for the CFA Institute, spending most of his time publishing curriculum materials for the CFA exams. His research focus is equity market valuation and he has been published in the Financial Analysts Journal and the Journal of Investing.

Stephen and his wife Kathie live in Mankato and are blessed with five children and nine grandchildren. They are members of the Legacy and Purple Gold Societies at the University. Stephen is a member of the Blue Line Club Board of Directors and he and Kathie are avid fans of Maverick hockey.