College of LAS « Illinois

LAS Outstanding Young Alumni Award recipients

2017 | 2015 | 2014 | 2007 | 2004 | 2003 | 2001 | 2000


Ifeoluwa (Luvvie) Ajayi
BS,'06, psychology

Ifeoluwa (Luvvie) Ajayi has emerged as a highly prominent pop culture commentator through her blog, Awesomely Luvvie, and her first book, "I'm Judging You: The Do-Better Manual." Ajayi has more than 10,000 visitors to her site on any given day, along with 180,000 likes on the Awesomely Luvvie Facebook page, 30,000 followers on Instagram, and 60,000 followers on Twitter. She co-founded The Red Pump Project with another Illinois alumna to increase HIV/AIDS awareness. Read more about Ifeoluwa (Luvvie) Ajayi.

Morgan McClain-McKinney Limo
BA, '09; MA, '11; political science

Morgan McClain-McKinney Limo serves as the program advisor for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), where she was awarded the USAID Meritorious Honor for Support to President Obama's Power Africa Initiative. Her savvy diplomatic skills and ability to cultivate relationships have made her a leader in working with entrepreneurs in the United States and Africa to increase opportunities for trade, investment, and creating market opportunities for the world's poorest populations. Read more about Morgan McClain-McKinney Limo.


Christina Brodbeck
BA, '01, history

Christina Brodbeck was one of the earliest team members of YouTube. She had graduated from Illinois with a bachelor's degree in history, specializing in Russian and Eastern European history. But she says the flexibility and freedom of an LAS degree, coupled with connections developed during her undergraduate years, changed her life completely. She now pursues her life's passion, which is designing and investing in startup companies in the San Francisco Bay area. Read more about Christina Brodbeck.


Patrick Walsh
BA, '07, economics; BS, '07, engineering physics

Patrick Walsh discovered the need for improved lighting in developing countries while on a trip to India as a University of Illinois student. This trip inspired him to start Greenlight Planet, a company that sold a million solar lanterns in 2013 and has already topped that number in 2014. Solar lanterns replace the more dangerous and expensive kerosene lamps. Read more about Patrick Walsh.


Margaret E. Kosal
PhD, '01, chemistry

It didn't take long for Margaret E. Kosal to emerge as one of the nation's leading young experts on chemical and biological defense. She has even spoken to the chiefs of the New York City Fire Department on terrorism and has become an authority on how emerging technologies, such as nanotechnology, might be used for both terrorism and counterterrorism. Read more about Margaret Kosal.


Scott Eggener
BS, '94, biology

Scott Eggener has demonstrated a unique ability to combine competence with compassion. He has talents in many areas-from surgery and patient relations to cancer research and academic writing. He has taken these skills and resources to some of the neediest areas in the world, helping to organize four medical missions, with an eye on many more. Read more Scott Eggener.


Chapin Rose
AB, '97, political science; JD, '00, law

Chapin Rose was elected as the second-youngest member of the Illinois House of Representatives. Six years after graduating with a degree in political science from LAS and three years out of U of I College of Law, he began rewriting death penalty laws and helping rebuild the Republican Party of Illinois as a member of the Illinois House of Representatives. Read more about Chapin Rose.


Penny Panayiota Deligiannis
AB, '87, AM, '92, speech communication

Penny Panayiota Deligiannis began working in overseas missions by joining a Greek Orthodox Mission Teaching Team in her hometown.Since then, she has been director of Diaconia Agapes and Action By Churches Together, an ecumenical network affiliated with the World Council of Churches. Currently, Ms. Deligiannis oversees 87 people and a budget of $9 million while assisting refugees from NATO's air war in the Balkans and ethnic Albanian Kosovars fleeing into Albania. Read more Penny Deligiannis.


Steven Kulm
AB, '92, political science

Steven Kulm has a passion for politics that has already won him an elected township position and the gratitude of his community for such projects as the local social service fund he organized that aids youth, seniors, the disabled, and the economically disadvantaged. Read more about Steven Klum.