The Distinguished Alumnus/Alumna Award honors an alumnus/alumna for leadership and service to St. Thomas, the community and in his or her field of endeavor. Since 1971, Alumni Relations has honored an individual each year for their extraordinary achievement.
2019 Award Recipient
Cardinal Blase Cupich '71
Cardinal Blase Joseph Cupich '71 is an American prelate of the Catholic Church, a cardinal who serves as the ninth archbishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago. He is also a member of the Roman Curia’s Congregation for Bishops, which plays a role in advising on bishop appointments and episcopal matters.
First Awarded in 1971
Making their mark across disciplines and industries, these distinguished alumni all work to advance the common good.
A few of the more recent recipients are featured below.
Mary Brainerd '79 M.B.A.
For 15 years as president and CEO of HealthPartners, Brainerd led the largest consumer-governed, nonprofit health-care organization in the country. As a founder and former chair of the Itasca Project, she demonstrates her ability to guide others in seeking to advance the common good.
Andrew Cecere '82
He was named chief executive officer of Minnesota-based U.S. Bancorp earlier this year. Cecere has been with U.S. Bancorp since 1985 and has held other leadership roles within the organization, including chief financial officer, chief operating officer, president and vice chairman.
Patrick Ryan '75
He is the third-generation president and CEO of Ryan Companies US Inc., a billion-dollar real estate company with 12 offices around the United States, and his community and philanthropic work is significant.