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Seven to be Recognized for Pride, Honor Brought to University


Former Ambassador Among Those to be Celebrated 
at Benefit for UMass Lowell Honors Program

LOWELL, Mass. ߝ They have succeeded in business, advocated for women’s rights around the world, pioneered experiential teaching models and overcome personal struggles to fulfill the American dream.

Seven honorees ߝ alumni, retired faculty and one community member ߝ will be recognized for the pride and honor they have brought to the university through their accomplishments at the Francis Cabot Lowell Alumni Awards and Honors Fellows Gala on Thursday, Nov. 19 at 5:30 p.m. at the UMass Lowell Inn and Conference Center.

Honorees are:

  • Lawrence J. Ardito  ’69, president of Toscano & Ardito PC ߝ Francis Cabot Lowell Award for Outstanding Achievement in Business;
  • Claire Chamberlain, retired physical education, physical therapy and exercise physiology faculty member ߝ Francis Cabot Lowell Faculty Award;
  • Swanee Hunt, former U.S. ambassador to Austria, Eleanor Roosevelt Lecturer in Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government, president, Hunt Alternatives Fund ߝ Community Honors Fellow;
  • Mary Kramer, retired English professor and strong supporter of the UMass Lowell Honors Program ߝ Honors Fellow, College of Arts and Sciences;
  • Ehud David Laska ’75, president and chief executive officer of Pelion Financial Group ߝ Francis Cabot Lowell Award for Outstanding Achievement in Business;
  • Peter O’Connell, retired director of the Tsongas Industrial History Center ߝ Honors Fellow, Graduate School of Education;
  • Diana Tran ’02, founder and owner of Diana’s Hair Fashion and Design ߝ Francis Cabot Lowell Young Alumni Award.

“We are thrilled to honor such an outstanding group of people who have made such a difference at UMass Lowell, in the community and for students,” said Beth Shorr, vice chancellor of University Advancement. “They truly show what can be realized through the power of possibility.”

The Francis Cabot Lowell Award, given to alumni, faculty and staff, honors the values and accomplishments of the city of Lowell’s namesake. Honors Fellows represent the legacy of educational excellence that inspires the UMass Lowell Honors Program. The Community Honors Fellow is the only honoree selected who is not from UMass Lowell, a tradition that began in 2008 in recognition of the important connection between the university and the community.

Tickets to the gala cost $75 per person and include a light dinner and the award ceremony.  Proceeds will benefit students in the Honors Program.
For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

UMass Lowell, with a national reputation in science, engineering and technology, is committed to educating students for lifelong success in a diverse world and conducting research and outreach activities that sustain the economic, environmental and social health of the region. UML offers its 13,000 students more than 120 degree choices, internships, five-year combined bachelor’s to master’s programs and doctoral studies in the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Engineering and Management, the School of Health and Environment, and the Graduate School of Education. .

For more information, contact or 978-934-3224