“Know yourself. Never forget where you came from, and reach back to help someone else come forward too.” Dr. Alpha Alexander, co-founder of Black Women in Sport Foundation
These words quoted by Daemen College Vice President for Institutional Advancement Dr. Richanne C. Mankey, captured the essence of five alumni honored at the Daemen College 2013 Distinguished Alumni Awards Dinner held Nov.1.
Before more than 150 friends, family, members of the college community, and 15 past Distinguished Alumni Award winners, Daemen alumni honored at the event were: Dr. Ali Ladak ‘08, Graduate of the Last Decade Award; Grace Meibohm ‘83, Advancement in Career Award; Dr. Paul Michaud ‘99, Distinguished Alumnus Award; Christopher D. Moore ‘00, Service to the Community Award; and Jeffrey Rabey ‘92, Dedication to the College Award.
“One way to measure the greatness of a college is by the accomplishments of its alumni. Our alumni are demonstrating every day that Daemen is truly a college of national distinction,” said Daemen President Gary A. Olson, in his introductory remarks. “As their stories demonstrate, our alums are doing amazing things not only here in Western New York, but around the country and in many locations around the globe.”
The 2013 honorees were introduced by mentors, Daemen faculty and others who have had a positive impact on their academic, personal or professional lives. The evening culminated with the presentation of the Distinguished Alumnus Award to Dr. Paul Michaud ‘99 of Evans, Ga. He expressed his thanks to his family and Daemen faculty and staff for their support in his professional endeavors and encouraged alumni to give back to the communities in which they serve.
As he gave his address at the Daemen Convocation, Dr. Michaud paid special tribute to Dr. Michael Brogan, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the college, as someone who inspired him to achieve his goals and to take care of people. He also reinforced the important role that Dr. Nancy Marck, associate professor of English, and Dr. Kristin Fries, associate professor of natural science, had in his educational experience at Daemen and in laying a positive foundation for his personal and professional lives.
Graduate of the Last Decade
Dr. Ali Ladak ‘08
Born and raised in Toronto, Canada, Dr. Ali Ladak completed his undergraduate studies at McMaster University and earned a doctorate of physical therapy at Daemen College.
While at Daemen, Dr. Ladak held various positions in residence life, including a graduate assistantship in which he served as a residence coordinator for two years. He also took part in multiple international programs while at Daemen, traveling to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and lectured to medical students and assisted with HIV education and research in Nairobi, Kenya. He was also a student ambassador in Beijing, China, where he received an honorary degree in traditional Chinese medicine.
Since graduating from Daemen, Dr. Ladak has worked for Onward Healthcare, a travel healthcare company, expanding his skills set and knowledge in various positions from pediatrics to geriatrics. He has worked in world-class facilities, including Moss Rehabilitation, Paley’s Limb Lengthening Institute, and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. As a result of his vast clinical knowledge, Dr. Ladak was selected to be the sole clinical liaison for Onward Healthcare. In this position, he helps new graduates transition into the field, guides employees regarding state policies and procedures, serves as a problem-solver for travel healthcare clinicians, and judges incidences.
Advancement in Career
Grace Meibohm ‘83
Grace Meibohm always knew she would have a career in the art field. She is the third-generation owner of Meibohm Fine Arts, a 112-year-old family art business on Main Street in East Aurora, N.Y., where it’s been located since 1957.
The gallery features the works of local artists, both historic and contemporary, and changes exhibits regularly throughout the year. She is renowned for mounting exquisite exhibits, which have included the most important members of the Western New York artistic community, including Daemen’s own James Kuo, Dennis Barraclough and Kevin Kegler.
In addition to the art careers of her parents and grandparents, Edna Lindemann, her father’s sister, was founding director of the Burchfield Penney Art Center. While she came from an artistic background, Meibohm’s parents never insisted she choose art as her profession but she decided to go into the field because she found such joy in it.
Meibohm Fine Arts has gained a reputation for advancing the careers of established artists and assisting emerging artists. In addition, the gallery’s framing services are sought by collectors, decorators and artists. Meibohm, who earned a BFA in art at Daemen, wears many hats when it comes to running her shop, handling everything from finances to the shop work. “I especially enjoy working with the artists and helping people choose beautiful artwork for their homes and collections,” she said.
Dr. Paul M. Michaud ‘99
As a graduate from Daemen with a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy, Dr. Paul Michaud began his career path with a solid foundation, noting that “at Daemen, I learned how to take care of people.”
Dr. Michaud began his career focused in the basic sciences, liberal arts and patient care. After graduating from Daemen, he went on to earn a master’s degree in science education from the University at Buffalo.
Commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Army, Dr. Michaud received a medical degree at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Science, and then completed a transitional internship at Eisenhower Army Medical Center in Fort Gordon, Ga. He continued his medical training at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., where he graduated from the radiology residency and the nuclear medicine fellowship programs.
Following a brief time as a nuclear and general radiologist at Walter Reed, Dr. Michaud continued his service in the Army and returned to Eisenhower Army Medical Center, where he was named chief of nuclear medicine and was quickly promoted to chief of radiology. Most recently, he was promoted to serve as assistant deputy commander of clinical services. Currently a major in the Medical Corps, he has also served as deputy nuclear medicine consultant for the Office of the Surgeon General.
Dr. Michaud remains clinically engaged as a nuclear and general radiologist at Eisenhower Army Medical Center. Focusing on patient-centered care and fiscally responsible practices, he’s been described by his supervisors as “a stunning talent, with absolutely unlimited potential.”
He’s received the Meritorious Service Medal, Two Army Commendation Medals, the Army Achievement Medal, and admittance into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society.
He resides in Evans, Ga., with his wife, Jamie, and sons, Paul, James, Andrew, David and Luke.
Service to the Community
Christopher D. Moore ‘00
After graduating from the Daemen Education Department, Christopher Moore realized the impact his service in the community would have in shaping his life.
As a Daemen student, Moore participated in athletics as well as in student affairs and residence life programs. He served as a residence assistant for two years and thoroughly enjoyed planning activities for his fellow resident students. He also had the opportunity to student teach in the Buffalo Public Schools.
Following graduation, Moore briefly worked in Daemen’s Office of Admissions, and then attended Canisius College and worked in the athletics department. While serving as a Buffalo firefighter, he was recruited to serve in the U.S. Secret Service Uniformed Division, and later promoted to the Technical Security Division.
Active in the community, Moore has served for the past three years as chairman of the March of Dimes/March For Babies for the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. He also assists with Project Alpha, a mentoring program for boys ages 12-15, and for Go to High School, Go to College, a mentoring program to support high-school students to attend college. In addition, he assists with voter registration for A Voteless People is a Hopeless People.
Moore’s volunteer activities have positively impacted the development of young African-American males in the community, as shown by the increase in the number of males who attend the events he’s involved with each year. He resides in Maryland with his wife, Ayanna, and, son, Christopher.
Dedication to the College
Jeffrey Rabey ‘92
Jeffrey Rabey has been extensively involved with Daemen following his 1992 graduation. As chair of the National Board of Governors, a position he has held since 2011, he has overseen several changes while representing Daemen alumni, and serves as the presiding officer for the Daemen College/Rosary Hill Alumni Association. The National Board of Governors is responsible for the Distinguished Alumni Awards, the Alumni Senior Award, overseeing various Alumni Chapters, and working with academic departments for Distinguished Alumni recognition within disciplines.
Rabey spoke on behalf of the alumni association for the inauguration of past President Edwin Clausen, and, most recently, spoke at the inauguration of President Gary A. Olson. In addition, he served as master of ceremonies for the 2011 Distinguished Alumni Awards.
Rabey has also served as Freshman Convocation speaker, represented the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity at a Greek Reunion, was a featured alumni speaker for an Alumni After Hours event, and was alumni representative for President Martin Anisman’s farewell event. He is currently serving on the newly established President’s Leadership Advisory Council.
Rabey has 20 years professional experience in education, including as an elementary and special education teacher, middle school counselor, high school assistant principal, middle/high school principal, director of secondary education, and superintendent of schools in the Lake Shore Central School District and currently in the Depew Union Free School District.
Earning a bachelor’s degree in education at Daemen, Rabey went on to receive a master’s degree in school counseling from St. Bonaventure University, a master’s degree in education administration from the University at Buffalo, and is completing a Ph.D. in leadership and policy at Niagara University. Jeff and his wife, Tracy, reside with their five children in East Aurora, N.Y.