Former Mexican president to deliver keynote address at annual Fairfield Awards Dinner


His Excellency Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Leon, former president of Mexico and director of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization, will give the keynote address and receive the Fairfield University Distinguished Leadership Award at the 2004 Fairfield Awards Dinner on Tuesday, April 13, in New York City.

The annual Alumni Association event raises funds for the University's multicultural scholarships. Since its inception in 1988, the endowed Alumni Multicultural Scholarship Fund has raised more than $3.6 million and provided financial aid to more than 60 students.

This year's event will also honor several outstanding alumni. They are: Jorge Figueredo '82, of Mahwah, N.J., president of Liz Claiborne International; Barbara Kiernan, M.A. '90, of Bridgeport, Conn., director of University publications and marketing communications; and Rosellen Walsh Schnurr '74, of Sharon, Conn., educator and member of the Board of Trustees. Long-time University benefactors Charles and Helen Dolan, of Oyster Bay, N.Y. and West Palm Beach, Fla., will receive an Honorary Alumni Award.

The dinner chairman is University Board of Trustees member E. Gerald Corrigan '63, of Lincoln, Mass., managing director at Goldman Sachs.

Zedillo earned his undergraduate degree at the National Polytechnical Institute of Mexico and his master's and doctoral degrees at Yale University. After leaving office, he became chairman of the United Nations High Level Panel of Financing for Development and a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the London School of Economics.

He is co-coordinator of the U.N. Millennium Development Goals Task Force on the Multilateral Trading System, co-chairman of the U.N. Commission on the Private Sector and Development, and co-chairman of the International Commission on Global Public Goods. He is also a professor of international economics and politics at Yale.

Figueredo, who will receive the Alumni Professional Achievement Award, joined Liz Claiborne in 1984 as warehouse personnel administrator, rising through the ranks to become president of the international organization 15 years later. On his way, he has been manager, director, vice president and senior vice president in the Department of Human Resources. In 1998, Human Resources Executive Magazine selected him as Human Resources Executive of the Year.

As president of the international division, Figueredo is responsible for a division that operates in Asia, Canada and Latin America and distributes 14 brands. He also led the acquisition and integration of MEXX Europe and MEXX Canada, combining them with existing Liz Claiborne companies to create regional operations.

Figueredo received his bachelor's degree in English and international business from Fairfield University, going on to attain an MBA from New York University's Stern School of Business in 1994. He was named a David Rockefeller Fellow in 1999 and is a member of the Fairfield University Trustees Advisory Council.

Kiernan, who will receive the Distinguished Administrator Award, is most familiar to the University community as editor of the alumni magazine, Fairfield Now. She also produces the President's Annual Report, and oversees the creation of admissions marketing materials, course catalogs, newsletters and other publications.

A 20-year University employee, she received a bachelor's degree in English from Rosemont College and a master's in communications from Fairfield University. She is a mother of five sons, two of whom are Fairfield alumni, and she holds a certificate in spiritual direction from Mercy Center in Madison, Conn. She has received several regional and national awards for her work, as well as being named 1998 Administrator of the Year by the University's Center of Multicultural Relations. She is an honorary member of Alpha Sigma Nu and received the Human Resources Choice Award in 2003.

Schnurr, founder and president of the Board of Directors of the Sharon Day Care Center in Sharon, Conn., will receive the Alumni Service Award. She has served on numerous University committees and co-chaired the Our Promise: The Campaign for Fairfield National Alumni Executive Committee and the Presidential search committee. She is a liaison to the University's Trustees Advisory Council and a member of the President's Circle.

In addition to her work with the Sharon Day Care Center, Schnurr has served as board chair of Indian Mountain School in Lakeville, Conn. She has held teaching positions with The Salisbury School, Guilford High School and Elizabeth A. Seton High School, and was dean of the liberal arts program at Katherine Gibbs School.

Schnurr, a member of the University's Board of Trustees, holds a master's degree from Georgetown University.

The Dolans are long-time benefactors of Fairfield University. Over the years, they have served the University community by providing funds for facilities and academic programs. In 1990, they made a $1 million gift to the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts and, at the same time, the University's north campus buildings were named for members of the Dolan family to honor a $4 million gift from the Dolan Family Foundation, which contributed to the acquisition of 13 acres and three structures.

In 2000, the Charles F. Dolan School of Business was named to recognize the couple's $25 million gift - the largest single gift in the University's history. The funds established several endowed chairs in various disciplines and created the Dolan Lecture series. Mr. Dolan has been a University Board of Trustees member since 1981 and is the founder and chairman of Cablevision Systems Corp., the nation's sixth-largest cable operator. Charles and Helen Dolan have six children, including two Fairfield alumnae.

The awards dinner will be held at the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers. For ticket information, call the University's Office of Special Events at 203-254-4000, ext. 2660.

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Media Contact: Nancy Habetz, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, nhabetz@fairfield.edu

Posted on March 10, 2004

Vol. 36, No. 222