2015 Alumni Association Awards of Distinction Recipients

The Alumni Association is proud to announce the 2015 Alumni Association Awards of Distinction recipients. Recipients will be recognized at the 7th Annual Chancellor’s Dinner and Alumni Awards of Distinction.

Distinguished Alumnus Award

The most prestigious of the honors bestowed by the UCR Alumni Association. The award is based on national and international distinction in one’s field and significant contribution to humankind.


Byron Pollitt, Jr. ’73pollitt2
Byron Pollitt ’73 received his degree in Economics and was a member of UCR’s intercollegiate fencing team.  He went on to earn an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.  He has had a long and distinguished career in business, including serving as Chief Financial Officer of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Gap, and most recently, Visa.  While at Visa, he merged six companies to form Visa Inc., completed the largest IPO in U.S. history as measured by money raised, and oversaw a 500% stock price increase, all of which resulted in Visa being named to the Dow 30.  He has received numerous recognitions and honors from the business world, including named as one of the Best S&P 500 CFOs by The Wall Street Journal (2012), and ranked seven times as a Top CFO by Institutional Investor.  In 2013 he received the Bay Area CFO of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award.  In the volunteer world, Byron has served four terms as a Board member of the American Red Cross Orange County and Bay Area Chapters.  As an alumnus, he has stayed dedicated to UCR by returning to campus to speak with students, serving as a commencement speaker, and hosting events for fellow alumni in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Alumni Service Award

Honors superior service in the public sector or a sustained pattern of volunteer service in the community, arts or for the benefit of UCR that has positively represented the University and fellow citizens.

figueroaMary Figueroa ’79
Mary Figueroa ’79 received her degrees in Chicano Studies and Political Science. She retired from the State of California Department of Corrections after 21 years at the California Institute for Men (CIM) in Chino, as a correctional counselor. She has been a member of the Riverside Community College District Board of Trustees since 1995, including serving as President. She has been an active member of the community, including serving on the Association of Community College Trustees Executive Board, the East Side Social Service Center Advisory Board, The Riverside Area Rape Crisis Board of Directors, The Greater Riverside Hispanic Chapter of Commerce Board of Directors, the State of California Attorney General’s Civic Rights Commission on Hate Crimes, the Community Settlement Association Board of Directors, and The San Gorgonio Girl Scout Council Board of Directors. Due to her expansive record of service to the community, Ms. Figueroa has received the highest awards given by the Black Voice Foundation, the Young Women’s Christian Association, the Inland Empire Influential Latina of the Year, and the Hispanic Image Award.

Outstanding Young Alumnus Award

Presented to alumni under the age of 35 with a significant record of career and/or civic achievement and promise in their profession.

nduatiMichael Nduati ’01
Michael Nduati ’01 received his degree in Biomedical Sciences in 2001 and completed a combined MD/MBA program from the David Geffen School of Medicine and the Anderson School of Management at UCLA. Additionally, he completed an MPH degree from Harvard School of Public Health. He is currently the Health Sciences Clinical Associate Professor of Family Medicine at the UCR School of Medicine. Dr. Nduati is an active member of the James W. Vines, Jr. Medical Society and Foundation, serving as the organization’s liaison to UCR’s African Americans United Science, and directs the Elma Vines Summer Health Academy.  He is also a mentor physician for the Riverside Free Clinic which operates a twice-monthly free clinic serving Riverside’s homeless population and others without health coverage. Additionally, he is the Academic Practice Forum Chair for the California Medical Association, and is a member of the Board of Councilors for the Riverside County Medical Association. In 2014, Dr. Nduati was one of seven family medicine physicians nationally selected to receive the New Faculty Scholar Award from the national Society of Teachers of Family Medicine Foundation.

Leave a Comment

%d bloggers like this: