Syracuse University

Who Am I?

Syracuse University alumni who are honored with the George Arents Award truly embody all that is Scholarship in Action. With their ability to see the world differently and their drive to incite lasting, positive change, they have made a difference in their communities and in the world.

Below are just some of the accomplishments of Arents Award recipients. Can you guess who they are? If not, you'll find the answers at the bottom of the page!

1) One of the youngest senators ever elected to Congress, I have earned national and international recognition as a strong proponent of innovative anti-crime and drug legislation. Today, I am recognized as one of the most influential voices on national security and civil liberties and am the Vice President of the United States of America. 

2) A former SU Air Force ROTC cadet, I became one of the first four women chosen for U.S. Air Force flight school. As a pilot, I logged over 6,751 hours in 30 different types of aircraft, and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel. In 1995 I became the first female space shuttle pilot and in 1999 I was chosen to be the first woman astronaut to command a NASA space shuttle mission.

3) I am a screenwriter, producer and playwright best known for my stage plays "A Few Good Men" and "The American President." I am also the creative force behind NBC’s critically and commercially acclaimed television series "The West Wing," which reached more than 17 million viewers each week and garnered a record number of Emmy Awards.

4) As a correspondent for Newsweek magazine in the 1970’s, I covered the Watergate trials, the U.S. Supreme Court and federal judiciary cases involving affirmative action, abortion and the death penalty. I am a noted writer on U.S. domestic policy and I was the first black woman to serve on The New York Times editorial board.

5) I am a textile designer noted for extending the boundaries of conventional weaving by using brilliant colors and a variety of materials to create unique tapestries with startling effects. My work has been featured in exhibitions in the United States, England and Switzerland, and has appeared in Vogue, Cosmopolitan, and Creative Arts Review.

6) I started my broadcasting career as sports director at WTVH-5 in Syracuse, where I was named top local sportscaster by the Syracuse Herald Journal. I went on to anchor ESPN’s SportsCenter as one of the cable network’s youngest on air talents, winning praise for my calm play-by-play commentary, low-key delivery style and brilliant ad libs.

7) In 1967, I challenged the all-male tradition of the Boston Marathon and became the first woman to run the race from start to finish. Following my athletic career, I devoted my life to creating opportunities for female athletes, successfully lobbying to make the women’s marathon an official event in the Olympic Games.

8) During my career at General Electric, I was regarded as one of the highest-ranking and most influential women in corporate America. As president of the GE Fund, I spearheaded a $10 million grant to New York City’s Twin Towers Fund for the families of rescue workers killed in the line of duty on September 11, 2001.

9) I attended Syracuse University on the G.I. Bill and went on to become the physician-astronaut who logged the most shuttle time in space. I pioneered many facets of space flight, including spacesuit design, and was an interstellar repairman who led the team that in 1993 fixed the Hubble Space Telescope.

10) I served as a wartime spy for U.S. intelligence before gaining recognition as a best-selling crime, mystery and suspense fiction writer. I authored more than 500 short stories and some 75 books, many of which were adapted for the silver screen, including The Executioners (1958), filmed twice as Cape Fear.

11) I am a venture capitalist who is known for the financial backing that launched Fairchild Semiconductor, the first company to put the "silicon" in Silicon Valley. I also financed many more technology giants, including Teledyne, Apple Computer, and Intel; companies that account for hundreds of thousands of jobs and as much as 40 percent of the U.S. export market.

12) I am an arts administrator who transformed the Studio Museum in Harlem into a premier showcase for African American art and culture. I was then appointed commissioner of New York City’s Department of Cultural Affairs, where I brought greater visibility to the arts by providing students and all segments of the community with greater access to artistic events.

13) I co-founded Duty Free International Inc., one of the largest chains of duty-free stores in the world. A dominant player in today’s duty-free retailing, my company posted more than $180 million in revenues in 1990 and was featured in Forbes magazine’s list of the “Two Hundred Best Small Companies in America.” Most recently, I served as chair of Syracuse University’s Board of Trustees.

14) I grew my family’s small, single-store bakery business into a billion-dollar industry by marketing and distributing frozen bagels to frozen food and food-service businesses and more than 30,000 supermarkets around the country. Today, the business is owned by Kraft and I operate the family bagel restaurant chain as well as several investment companies.

15) An artist turned executive, I achieved success as a Broadway producer and took charge of the CBS network’s television specials in 1960. I went on to become president of Warner Brothers Television, where I was head of the company’s domestic and international production and distribution. Later, I launched my own company, GJL Productions.


1) Joseph R. Biden Jr. L'68
2005 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Public Affairs

2) Eileen M. Collins '78, H'01
1996 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Space Exploration

3) Aaron Sorkin '83
2001 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Dramatic Writing

4) Diane Camper '68
1990 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Journalism

5) Candace Bahouth '68
1988 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Art

6) Michael T. Tirico '88
2005 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Sports Broadcasting

7) Kathrine V. Switzer '68, G'72
2006 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Athletics

8) Joyce Hergenhan '63
2005 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Corporate Communications

9) F. Story Musgrave '58, H'85
1997 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Space Exploration

10) John D. MacDonald '38
1971 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Writing

11) Arthur Rock '48
1997 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Business

12) Mary Schmidt Campbell G'73, G'80, G'82
1993 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Art

13) John A. Couri '63, H'08
1993 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Business

14) Marvin K. Lender '63
1993 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Business

15) Gerald J. Leider '53
1977 Arents Award recipient for Excellence in Communications

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