U of U Grads in Northern California Cheer the Runnin’ Utes to Victory

In January, more than 50 exuberant U of U alumni cheered the Runnin’ Utes to a 41-35 victory over St. Mary’s College of California. Fans who showed up early were treated to an official “chalk talk” and reception with Director of Basketball Operations Mike Schneider. Personable and knowledgeable, Schneider provided insights into the U’s basketball program, Coach Majerus and the team, and the tactics that fans could expect to see on the court that night.

Ute fans were seated directly behind the Utah bench, “close enough to hear the team and coaches in huddle and to realize just how big those 6’9” players are,” reports Bob Livsey BS’62 JD’65, head of the chapter.

Postgame, fans stuck around for a chat and a few photos with players and coaching staff. The team commented on how great it was to have so many Utah fans cheering them on.

March 2002 marked the one-year anniversary of the Bay Area Chapter. A busy year of chapter events has included an evening with President Machen, a dinner with Coach Majerus, a Utah vs. BYU football game broadcast, and a Thanksgiving fund-raiser that collected over 100 pounds of food for the San Francisco Food Bank.

For more information on Bay Area Chapter activities, contact Bob Livsey at 415-442-1230 or

Cleveland Cavalier Michael Doleac (left) with Ute fans Rob Hill and Tony Campman during pre-game warm-ups for the game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Denver Nuggets, Jan. 10, 2002.

Mile-High Utes
The U of U alumni chapter in Colorado celebrated March Madness 2002 at Lodo’s Bar & Grill in Denver, watching on a big screen and rooting for the Runnin’ Utes. Last year Miller Beer sponsored the group, providing prizes, beverage specials, and even a chapter banner, which caught the attention of some Coloradoans who became new chapter members.

U alumni gather periodically to rally around the Denver Nuggets. Games featuring former Utes generally attract a sizable crowd of Ute fans, and the chapter leadership arranges special prices with the Nuggets to encourage attendance. In return, Nugget organizers invite all 3,000 Ute alumni in Colorado to the game, with a special invitation to the pre-game warm-up.

These events also serve as fund-raisers for the chapter, which receives a return on each ticket sold. In January 2002, the chapter sold more than 150 tickets to alumni and their families.

For information on chapter events and/or membership, contact chapter president Rob Hill BS’91 at 303-799-3899 or


Each year the Young Alumni Association (YAA) acknowledges alumni, faculty, staff, and friends who have made outstanding contributions to the University and the community. The 2002 awards and recipients include:

Adjunct Faculty Award

A four-time graduate of the University of Utah, Richard Ingebretsen BS’80 MS’84 PhD’89 MD’93, associate professor, Dept. of Physics, has been teaching students in science and medicine for almost 20 years. He offers a number of specialized physics courses, including “Physics of the Human Body,” and has made a major contribution to the Medical Physics program. He also holds an appointment in the School of Medicine, where he teaches a course on wilderness medicine, described as the best in the country.

Faculty Community Service Award

A member of the University of Utah faculty since 1992, Thanh M. Truong, associate professor, Dept. of Chemistry, has established an internationally recognized research program in chemistry. In 1993 he co-founded the Vietnamese Association of Utah and has mentored over 100 at-risk Vietnamese high school students. In 1995 he established an annual awards program, supported by local Vietnamese businesses, to recognize outstanding Vietnamese high school students. He has been nominated to represent the Vietnamese community on the State of Utah Asian American Advisory Council.

The Philip and Miriam Perlman Award for Excellence in Student Counseling – Faculty

Acknowledged for her unselfish commitment to teaching, advising, and mentoring students, Barbara Hamblin BFA’73, professor and academic advisor, Dept. of Ballet, has helped make the department one of the top ten in the nation. On campus, the ballet department is highly rated for its efforts to recruit new students and provide a top quality program for them. Hamblin handles a full studio and academic teaching load, and is the U’s ballet community representative to the Ballet Teachers Association.

The Philip and Miriam Perlman Award for Excellence in Student Counseling – Staff

From 1994-2001, JoAnn H. Eagan BS’74 MEd’93, academic advisor, Dept. of Athletics, worked for the U’s Center for Disability Services, where she advised students with learning, psychological, and physical disabilities. Currently, Eagan is academic advisor in the athletics department, assisting with course and major selection and monitoring academic performance. She acts as liaison between athletics and other departments, including the Educational Opportunities Program and the Counseling Center.

Par Excellence Award

In recognition of his outstanding professional achievements and commitment to community service, John K. Garff BS’92 was selected to receive the 2002 Par Excellence Award. Garff is founder and CEO of, a division of the Ken Garff Automotive Group. He has been actively involved with the David Eccles School of Business, serving on the school’s National Advisory Board, the UTec board of directors, and as a mentor in the school’s SMART Start Mentoring Program. He is a major supporter of the business school, Gardner Hall, and the Alumni Scholarship Fund.

Emeritus Merit of Honor Award

The Emeritus Merit of Honor Award Winners for 2002 are Desmond J. Barker BS’52, F. Burton Cassity BS’51, Ted R. Capener BS’53, George G. Jackson MD’45, Judith L. Magid BA’60, June W. Nebeker BS’49, and Charles M. Woolf BS’48 MS’49, in recognition of their outstanding contributions to the University and to the local and national communities.


Young Alumni Association
The following U of U juniors were selected to receive YAA scholarships for 2002-03, based on their solid
academic performance and commitment to the betterment of the University and the community: Britney Brinkman, Cory Davies, Jessica Judkins, Benjamin Lowe, Jessica Peterson, and Lisa Welze.

Emeritus Alumni Association

The Emeritus Alumni Association each year awards scholarship assistance to two nontraditional students who are selected on the basis of financial need and life circumstances that have precluded their attending the University of Utah at an earlier date. The 2002-03 recipients are:

Kris Bancroft grew up in Duchesne, Utah, and attended the U in 1989 until an illness and disability forced him to leave school. Bancroft plans to pursue a degree in sociology, eventually continuing on to law school with the goal of providing legal assistance to people with disabilities. Bancroft and his wife, Mary, have four children.

Umit “Kagen” Ocak, born and raised in Istanbul, Turkey, has worked as a translator and international business consultant. In resuming his university studies, he plans to earn a degree in business, followed by enrollment in the MBA program. Ocak eventually hopes to work for an international company doing business in the Eurasian region.

Beehive Honor Society
The following students were selected to receive the Beehive Scholarships for 2002-03 based on their academic excellence and service to the community: graduate student and Beehive Honor Society member Ryan W. Thompson BA’01, and undergraduates Laura Elise Jacobson and Jessica Judkins.