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Honoring Our Students

At the end of each year, we take the opportunity to recognize our students for their significant work during Honors Convocation. Celebrating all our students have accomplished and highlighting their contributions to their community offers a time for reflection and pride. We hope you will join us in congratulating this year's award recipients.

Beta Gamma Sigma Inductees

Beta Gamma Sigma was founded as a national organization in 1913 and its first charter started at the University of Richmond in 1964.

To establish and maintain an active Beta Gamma Sigma Chapter, an institution must be accredited by The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International), the recognized accrediting agency for undergraduate and master's programs in business and management.

Membership in Beta Gamma Sigma is the highest national recognition a student can receive in an undergraduate or master’s program in business or management.

To be eligible for membership, a student must rank in the upper 10 percent of the junior class, upper 10% of the senior class, or upper 20% of the master’s class.

Baker Michael McKinley Baker, '21 Liu Yunhao Liu, '21
Clark Isabelle Clark, '21 Nguyen Nguyen Le Duv, '21
Cromwell Kara E. Cromwell, '21 Reedy Lizzie Reedy, '21
Deng Xinyu (Lavinia) Deng, '20 Riveness Katherine Ventre Riveness, '20
Deng Diwen (Didier) Deng, '20 Alvarez Ana Miriam Salitan-Alvarez, '20
Douragh Kieron Douragh, '21 Schwartz Julia Rose Schwartz, '20
Dow Gianna Dowd, '21 Shen Ziheng Shen, '20
Fagan Rebecca Fagan, '21 Suchsland Laurel Patricia Suchsland, '21
Flinn Cameron Flinn, '21 Tamplin William Lawrence Tamplin, '21
Griswold Brendan Joseph Griswold, '20 Timoney Isabelle Timoney, '21
He Qiaochu He, '21 Tuorto Ryan Tuorto, '21
Lang Hunter Lang, '21 Watton Erin Watton, '21

Economics Honor Society Inductees

Omicron Delta Epsilon is one of the world's largest academic honor societies. The objectives of Omicron Delta Epsilon are recognition of scholastic attainment and the honoring of outstanding achievements in economics and the establishment of closer ties between students and faculty in economics within colleges and universities, and among colleges and universities.

Holt Alyssa Holt, '20 Mendelson Claire Mendelson, '20
Kleczka Justin Daniel Kleczka, '20 Naveed Hassan Naveed, '20
Kohnert Alexandra Kohnert, '20 Castillo Maria Navarro Castillo, '20
Ludwig Allison Ludwig, '20 Reistle Leah Reistle, '20
McMeans Sheldon Parker McMeans, '20 MonSu Thin Yee Mon Su, '20
Ricart Elizabeth Mejia-Ricart Guerra, '20 Yen Monique Ariel Yen, '20

Departmental Award Recipients

These awards recognize the outstanding work of our students in the five departments.


Delta Sigma Pi Scholarship Key
Violet Zeng, '20

Each Delta Sigma Pi chapter awards a “Scholarship Key” in the spring to the graduating student with the highest cumulative academic average toward a degree in business administration or economics, regardless of fraternal affiliation.


Wall Street Journal Award for Outstanding Student in Finance
Alexandra Kohnert, '20

This award is presented to the outstanding student in finance for the previous year. The student is chosen by a vote of the Finance faculty.

"Alexandra “Alex” Kohnert has been particularly instrumental in her efforts to further women within the Robins School, as the Presidents of the Women in Business club as as a SMIF Manager, Alex lead efforts to encourage the participation and leadership of females particularly in finance. She leads by example, brings a humility and quiet confidence to all she does and will take her next level of success to working at UBS."


Outstanding Financial Analyst Award 
Ben Smith, '20

This recipient is selected by members of the Student Managed Investment Fund. The award is given to the student who produces the highest quality research report on a company or industry.

"Ben started a club at Richmond the FINTech club so can be credited as being the founder and president of a Richmond Club. He is also known as a campus expert on Bitcoin, providing leadership and insight to many on that topic—he even gave a presentation to the Robins School faculty following a faculty meeting years ago on the topic!"


Thomas Brennan O'Brien III Award in Finance
Claire Cooke Griffiths, '20

The finance award has been renamed in memory of Thomas Brennan O’Brian III, a 2008 graduate of the Robins School of Business who passed at the age of 30 after an eight-month battle with cancer. He approached his illness the same way he approached life, with hard work, optimism, and good cheer for those around him. He is remembered fondly by our community as mature, service oriented, and an all-around wonderful person.

"Claire has handled her tenure in the Robins School with calm and steady brilliance. Whether has President of Alpha Kappa Psi or as SMIF general management, her leadership and integrity among her peers has earned her the respect of all. From impressing Wall Street firms as a sophomore to leading the final SMIF report from Switzerland, Claire’s has made the Robins School proud."


Accounting Faculty Senior Award
Nick Sica, '20

This award is presented to the graduating student that the Accounting Department has decided is most representative of the hard work exemplified in the accounting profession.

"Nick has shown a great academic performance in both classes. He is a serious and hardworking individual. But, most importantly, Nick has provided an outstanding leadership to Accounting Society (AS) student organization. As president, Nick has led many activities benefiting the accounting majors. For example, under his leadership, AS organized mentorship program where seniors & juniors are matched with newly declared accounting majors and help them navigate around the accounting major."

Herb Peterson Award for the Outstanding Undergraduate Accounting Student


Whitney Bai, '20


Sarah Pencak, '20


Katherine Riveness, '20


Violet Zeng, '20

For many decades Herb Peterson served as the Vice-President of Business and Finance at the University of Richmond. He was one of the primary reasons that the university has enjoyed such financial success. When he retired about 10 years ago, friends and colleagues raised money in his honor for a scholarship to be awarded annually to the overall outstanding accounting graduate.  Our four winners this year, Violet Zeng, Sarah Pencak, Katherine Riveness, and Whitney Bai, have been brilliant and hard-working students for the past four years. Their consistent academic success shows their interest in learning and their drive to be successful. 


Robert L. Taylor Award for Excellence in Economics
Elizabeth Mejia-Ricart Guerra, '20

This award was created in memory of Robert Lawrence Taylor, class of 1938. Mr. Taylor was president and chairman of the First National Bank of Martinsville and Henry County, vice president of the Charles B. Keesee Educational Fund, and chairman of the Henry County School Board. In 1997, Dr. and Mrs. Robert L. Taylor, Jr. and their children, Rachel and Rebecca, established the award to recognize the graduating senior Economics major demonstrating academic excellence through the highest overall grade point average.

"Elizabeth Mejia-Ricart Guerra, a Mathematical Economics major, is one of only five students enrolled in our honors program. Last summer, Elizabeth did some original research and won the summer research award for the quality of her research. This year, she is writing her honors thesis on estimating value at risk for the university’s ETF fund. She will be attending graduate school next year."


Outstanding Economics Student Award 
Claire Mendelson, '20

This award is given to the student who is determined by a vote of the faculty to be the most outstanding graduating student among Economics majors (in both Arts & Sciences and Business) and Mathematical Economics majors. 

"Claire is a double major in Economics and PPEL (concentration: politics). Next year, she will be working at JMI Equity. She is very active on campus in all sorts of things: She is the digital director for the Collegian, on the Honor Council executive board, and in AKPsi and ODK. She is also a Richmond Boatwright Scholar and Oliver Hill Scholar. She is also in the Economics Honors program where she is writing a paper on the effects of tuition resets."


Outstanding Student in Management
Gabriela Telepman, '20

This award is given to the best all-round Management student based on academic performance, extracurricular participation, and character. The recipient is selected by a vote of the Management faculty.

"Gabi is a star both within and outside the classroom. A double-major in Business Administration (Management concentration) and Latin American, Latino, and Iberian Studies, Gabi is a highly talented and engaged student whose work ethic and astute insights elevate the learning environment in the classroom. She is equally impressive outside the classroom, and a handful of her accomplishments includes serving as the captain of the UR team that won the National Diversity Case Competition in 2020, being a recipient of the Fulbright Binational Business Grant in Mexico City, and serving as a University of Richmond Civic Fellow and Teach For America campus ambassador, all while also being a member of the University Dancers. We are proud and fortunate to have Gabi as a Management student."


Outstanding Student in Consulting
Reilly Geritz, '20

This award is given to the best all-round student in the Management Consulting concentration as determined by a vote of the Management faculty. The award is based on the student’s academic performance, extracurricular involvement and leadership, and character. 

"In addition to her academic excellence, Reilly has an impressive list of achievements. She has served as an engagement manager and the director of consulting for Lakeside Consulting Group. She has been a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma and Phi Eta Sigma honor societies. She has been a Q-camp ambassador, served as the president of the Club Field Hockey team, and held a leadership role in her Greek organization (Pi Beta Phi). Most recently, she played a central role in creating the Sustainable Solutions Challenge, a new, annual competition that is open to all University of Richmond undergraduates. Upon graduation, Reilly will remain in Richmond and join the consulting firm CapTech Ventures. It has been a delight to work with Reilly, and we are proud to have her represent the Management Consulting concentration."


Outstanding Student in Entrepreneurship
Alexa Fasulo, '20

This award is given to the best all-round student in the Entrepreneurship concentration as determined by a vote of the Management faculty. The award is based on the student’s academic performance, extracurricular involvement and leadership, and character.

"Alexa has consistently been a top student at the Robins School while pursuing a second major in Italian Studies. She regularly approaches problems with a creative and entrepreneurial mindset. Alexa has shown that she carefully considers all of the stakeholders in a given situation and seeks to devise an innovative approach for moving forward that will optimize each stakeholder’s outcomes. She is a leader in the classroom and a leader on each of her teams. We are confident Alexa’s energy and enthusiasm will serve her well into the future."


Management Professors' Award
Corbin Riley, '20

This award is given to a Management student who is resilient in the face of adversity, takes ownership over their actions, and successfully overcomes challenges with grace. This student is earnest, focused, and committed both within and outside the classroom.

"Corbin goes the extra mile inside and outside the classroom. He regularly turns assignments in weeks before they are due, puts in extra effort into everything he does, and stands out among his peers for his willingness to help others. Those that know him often share stories of the positive impact he has on their time here at UR, both inside and outside the classroom."


Outstanding Marketing Student Award
Sara Schuham, '20

This award is given to the best all-around graduating Marketing student as selected by a vote of the Marketing Department faculty. The award is based on the student’s academic achievement, involvement and contributions to the Marketing Department and the Robins School of Business, and extra-curricular activities.

"Sara has not only greatly succeeded academically – she has one of the top GPAs among marketing concentrators – but is also a leader in and out of the classroom. And, it is not just the Robins marketing faculty who recognizes Sara's outstanding academic accomplishments and leadership contributions to the class of 2020. Ten judges from 3M and Altria also recognized her talents by naming her one of the "Top Three Salespeople" at the annual National Team Selling competition. This is only the second time a UR student has received such an honor."


Outstanding International Business Student
Claire Cooke Griffiths, '20

This award is given to the best all-around graduating student concentrating in International Business. Selection as the outstanding international business graduate is based on the student’s overall academic performance, curricular and extracurricular involvement and contributions to the Robins School’s international business programs. 

"In addition to international business, Claire has concentrations in economics and finance. She has had numerous internships in financial services, and most recently with the George C. Marshall Center for Security Studies in Germany. She is an Oldham Scholar, a Poets&Quants' Best & Brightest Business Major, general manager/president of the RSB SMIF, and past president off Alpha Kappa Psi. She studied abroad at Vienna University of Economics and Business and speaks French, Spanish, Portuguese, and German."

Charles Norman Award 
Hanna Lankler, '20

This award was established in 1922 by a gift from the O. H. Berry Company, a Richmond clothier at that time. Charles Norman was then the president. The award is given to the best all-around graduating senior, as determined by a vote of the faculty. This is a very difficult decision to make, given the exceptional students that we have.

Alumni Association Outstanding Senior Award
Reilly Geritz, '20

This award was established in 1999 and is presented annually by the Alumni Association. The award is given to a senior who has typified, throughout his or her college years, loyal, enthusiastic, and unselfish service to the campus community while demonstrating through business experiences, community service, or class work the spirit of entrepreneurship, inherent in business leadership.

Outstanding MBA Student


Kelli McKenna, GB'20

Each year faculty members in the MBA program nominate graduating students for the Outstanding MBA Graduate of the Year Award. All nominations are received, reviewed, and selected by the director of the Richard S. Reynolds Graduate School of Business.

"What dedication and commitment! Always focused and attentive to every topic and committed to understanding them in full. She is an active participant and never afraid to ask a question."

Omicron Delta Kappa


Michael Gaetano, GB'20


Scott McQuiddy, GB'20

The purpose of Omicron Delta Kappa as an honor society is to celebrate excellence in academics and integrity of character. The society exists because those who founded it believed that there are achievements worthy of celebration: academic work of extraordinary quality and exemplary leadership.

"Based on their demonstrated leadership in The Richmond MBA and their academic achievements, Michael Gaetano, GB’20, and Scott McQuiddy, GB’20, have been inducted in to the University of Richmond’s Epsilon Circle chapter of Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership Honor Society. O∆K is the oldest leadership honor society in the U.S. and has been recognizing individuals of superior leadership since 1914. Epsilon Circle members enrich the lives of students and faculty and contribute to University of Richmond through scholarship, service, integrity, character, and fellowship. Both Scott and Mike served on The Richmond MBA Student Leadership Council as president and vice president, respectively, and rank in the upper 35% of their class. We congratulate them on this lifetime distinction."

Banner Bearer

The Banner Bearer is the graduating student with the highest grade point average.


Brian Veasey, GB'20