2011 Alumni of Distinction Award Recipients

UAA Alumni of Achievement Award: Eric Wohlforth, LL.D. '09, M.A. Interdisciplinary Studies '11, Senior Partner & Attorney, Wohlforth, Brecht, Cartledge & Brooking

Seventy-nine-year-old Eric Wohlforth is the epitome of a lifelong learner. He adds his degree from UAA to a resume that includes Princeton University, University of Virginia School of Law, Loyola University and the Fielding Graduate Institute. Rooted in community service, Eric serves on the Chancellor's Board of Advisors and the UA Foundation Board of Trustees, is a leadership-level donor to the University, and is currently the chair of the UA Foundation Investment Committee. Read about this award here.

Eric Wohlforth 
UAA Alumni Humanitarian Award: Joan Fisher, M.B.A. '99, Director of Strategic Initiatives, Anchorage Neighborhood Health Center

Since earning her M.B.A. from UAA in '99, Joan served as the executive director of Anchorage Neighborhood Health Center (ANHC). Joan, who recently took on the new role of director of strategic initiatives, has been instrumental in raising funds to build a new $28.3M health center in Anchorage--set to open in summer 2012--that will more than double ANHC's capacity to serve the city's health care needs. Read about this award here.

Joan Fisher 
UAA Alumni Emerging Leader Award: Dan Bigley,M.S.W. '09, Director of Therapeutic Foster Care Services, Denali Family Services



A grizzly bear mauled Dan Bigley in the summer of 2003 on the shores of Alaska's Russian River and left him for dead. The odds were against him, but Dan survived, and after many surgeries and rehabilitative efforts he was able to pick up where he left off several years ago. With the support of UAA's Disability Support Services, Dan earned his M.S.W. in '09 from UAA with a 4.0 GPA. He now works with youth and families facing trauma, sexual abuse, substance abuse, behavioral disorders or mental illnesses. Dan is currently writing a book about the bear that nearly killed him and left him blinded. Read Dan's full story at greenandgold.uaa.alaska.edu under "I am UAA." Read about this award here.

Submit your nomination for the 2012 Alumni of Distinction Awards!

Dan Bigley