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Alumni Awards

Kinesiology Professional Achievement Award


This award was initiated in 1999, the centennial year for the Department of Kinesiology. The primary criterion for this award is sustained, significant contributions to the field of kinesiology.

Nomination Procedures

Anyone may submit a nomination. The award is typically presented at an April ceremony, with nominations due earlier in the spring. Nominations should include the nominee's name, title/s, home address/phone, business address/phone, email address, MSU affiliation, and activities, accomplishments, and awards, as well as the nominator's name, title/s, phone, and email address. The completed nomination information should be submitted to the Chairperson of the Department of Kinesiology, 134 IM Sports Circle, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824.



Judi Brown Clarke, Ph.D.
Dr. Brown Clarke earned a MS degree from Michigan State University and her Ph.D. from Western Michigan University in Public Administration and Policy. Dr. Brown Clarke has distinguished herself in a variety of settings. As an athlete, her accomplishments ranged from winning multiple Big Ten Championships to winning a silver medal in the 400 meter hurdles in the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, CA. The accomplishments continued throughout her professional life and include working for the State of Michigan with children's services and becoming the Director of Multicultural Affairs and Inclusion at MSU in 2006. She remains an active community leader having been elected to the Lansing City Council and has participated on many local boards and foundations.




Clarence Underwood, Ph.D. 1982
Dr. Underwood is a retired Athletic Director of Michigan State University. Born in Gadsen, Alabama, Dr. Underwood obtained his bachelor's degree, master's degree and Ph.D. from Michigan State University. Dr. Underwood served as Assistant Athletic Director for Academic Support, Associate Alumni Director, Deputy Commissioner of the Big Ten Conference, Assistant Athletics Director for Compliance, and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics at Michigan State Univeristy. During his tenure in these positions, Dr. Underwood initiated the SCORE program (Success Comes Out of Reading Everyday) and promoted the Big Ten Advisory Commission while establishing higher standards in academic advising and institutional compliance.



Bonnie Smoak, Ph.D. 1985
Bonnie Smoak earned a Ph.D. in Exercise Physiology from the College of Education in 1985, and has spent her career focusing on emerging pathogens and infectious disease surveillance systems on a global scale. Smoak served in the U.S. Army for 26 years before retiring as a colonel in 2008. Some of the highlights of her career include time spent in Kenya researching malaria, enteric pathogens drug resistance patterns and viral hemorrhagic fevers, as well as serving as commander of the United States Army Medical Component – Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Sciences from 2005 to 2007. Smoak is now chief of the Department of Health Systems at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. She is currently leading a team working in Kenya, Uganda, Ukraine, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia to enhance their public health infrastructure’s abilities to detect, diagnose and report infectious diseases.


Linda Petlichkoff, Ph.D. 1982
Linda Petlichkoff accepted her appointment to a tenure-track position in the Boise State Department of Kinesiology in Fall of 1987. Petlichkoff has published numerous articles on issues related to participation in and withdrawal from sport, competitive anxiety, achievement goal profiles, coaching children, goal setting techniques, and self-regulation skills. Her current interests focus on youth development through sport and self-regulation. Currently, Petlichkoff serves as a Developmental Consultant for The First Tee™ Life Skills Curriculum.


James S. Walton, Ph.D. 1970
James S. Walton is president and owner of 4DVideo, a small business that provides products and services that employ image-based motion measurement and motion reconstruction. In 1968, he received a Diploma in Physical Education and his credential from Carnigie College in the U.K. He received his M.A. in Education from MSU in 1970, his M.S. in Applied Mechanics from Stanford University in 1976 and his Ph.D. in Physical Education (biomechanics/engineering mechanics) from Penn State University in 1981


Michael Maksud, Ph.D. 1965
Michael Maksud is Dean Emeritus at Oregon State University where he served as Dean of the College of Health and Human Performance from 1980 to 1995. Dr. Maksud received his Ph.D. at Michigan State University under the guidance of Dr. Wayne Van Huss in 1965 after completing his Master’s degree at Syracuse University and an undergraduate degree at the University of Illinois. Prior to his tenure as Dean at Oregon State University, his professional experience included Chairperson of the Department of Physical Education at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Professor and Director of the Exercise Physiology Laboratory, and Associate Dean of Academic Programs of the Graduate School of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. 


Dee Edington, Ph.D. 1968
Dr. Edington's teaching and research focus on the relationship between healthy lifestyles, vitality and quality of life, as they benefit both individuals and organizations. Dr. Edington is the author or co-author of over 400 articles, presentations, and several books, including Biology of Physical Activity, Biological Awareness, Frontiers of Exercise Biology, and The One Minute Manager Gets Fit. He has served on the faculty at the University of Massachusetts and the University of Michigan.


Kathryn Lindahl, M.A. 1979
Kathy Lindahl’s career path began as a high school physical education teacher and coach in Normal IL, followed by associate director of athletics at MSU, and currently Assistant Vice President for Finance and Operations at MSU. Ms. Lindahl has maintained her kinesiology roots, and often teaches an MSU graduate course in sports law for administrators and coaches.


Ronnie P. Barnes, M.S. 1979
After his stint as a student athletic trainer at MSU, Ronnie Barnes completed an internship and subsequently because head athletic trainer for the New York Giants (football). His current position is Vice President for Medical Services for the Giants. Mr. Barnes has served in a variety of leadership roles for NATA, NATABOC, and the Professional Athletic Trainers Society. He is a co-author of the popular textbook, Athletic Training and Sports Medicine.


Kelvin Sampson, M.S. 1980
Mr. Sampson studied coaching and sports administration at MSU, and also served as a graduate assistant coach under Jud Heathcote. He has subsequently coached at Montana Tech, Washington State University, and Oklahoma. Coach Sampson earned national coach of the year honors in 1995 from the Associated Press, United States Basketball Underwriters Association, and Basketball Weekly. He was similarly honored in 2002 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches and CBS/Chevrolet.


Dale A. Ulrich, Ph.D. 1981
Dale Ulrich is an international leader in adapted physical activity and motor development, known for his research on facilitating the motor development of young children with disabilities, as well as the development of the Test of Gross Motor Development. Dale has served on the faculties at Southern Illinois University, Indiana University, and University of Michigan. His professional contributions include President of the North American Federation on Adapted Physical Activity and Associate Editor of Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly.


Frances B. Koenig, Ph.D. 1969
Throughout her professional career of 37 years, Frances was a consummate advocate of physical education and women's sports. She taught physical education and coached all girls’ sports at Morrisville Central School, followed by teaching and coaching assignments (especially basketball and field hockey) at Concordia Teachers College, MSU, and Central Michigan University. When her career ended because of her untimely death in 2000, she was Director of Women’s Athletics and a member of the physical education faculty at Central Michigan University.


David R. Lamb, M.A., 1962, Ph.D. 1965
Dr. Lamb has been a very productive scholar, authoring 20 books and over 70 research articles on topics in exercise physiology. He received research funding from numerous granting agencies, including the National Institute on Aging, American Heart Association, the Quaker Oats Company, and the United States Olympic Committee. Dr. Lamb’s contributions include service as president of the American College of Sports Medicine and fellow in the American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education


Jean C. (McIntyre) Netherton, Ph.D. 1966
Dr. Netherton has served higher education in a number of capacities for almost half a century.  She has been a faculty member at Alabama College, Michigan State University, the University of Maryland, and Northern Virginia Community College. She was selected as the first woman Dean and Provost in the Virginia Community College System.  Dr. Netherton has received several awards in recognition of her vision and leadership.


E. Jane Watkinson, Ph.D. 1977
Dr. Watkinson has continued the rich research tradition established by her mentor, Janet Wessel, with a prolific record of presentations, publications, and grants related to curriculum and instruction for children with cognitive disabilities.  Dr. Watkinson has provided leadership to professional organizations and served as associate editor for Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly. She is a McCalla Professor at the University of Alberta, where she has also served as dean and department chairperson. 


V. Reggie Edgerton, Ph.D. 1968
Dr. Edgerton’s research is focused on neural control of movement and how this neural control adapts to altered use as well as chronic spinal cord injury. He is the co-author of two books: The Biology of Physical Activity and An Atlas of the Lesser Bushbaby, and has authored approximately 300 research papers. Reggie has received several prestigious awards for his scholarly works. He is a professor, and formerly chairperson, of the Department of Physiological Sciences at the University of California at Los Angeles.


Richard C. Nelson, Ph.D. 1960
Dr. Richard C. Nelson is emeritus professor of biomechanics at The Pennsylvania State University’s Department of Kinesiology. Dr. Nelson is internationally renowned for his work on the role of biomechanics in improving human performance and reducing injuries. He has been well funded for his work, which has been published in over 90 scientific journals. Dr. Nelson is a former Alliance Scholar, a fellow in the American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education, and a member of the Medical Commission of the International Olympic Committee.


Beverly Ulrich, Ph.D. 1984
Dr. Ulrich has been in the forefront of new approaches to the study and conceptualization of the development and refinement of motor skills in children and youth. Her research has been well funded and widely published. Bev is president of the North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity and has been elected fellow of the American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education. She currently serves as director of the Division of Kinesiology at the University of Michigan.


Maureen Weiss, Ph.D. 1981
Dr. Weiss's research has focused on the psychological and social development of children and adolescents through participation in sport and physical activity. “Mo” enjoys an international reputation as a result of invited scholar/lecture positions in several countries and publications in over 70 scientific journals. She is past-president for the Association for the Advancement of Applied Sport Psychology and an elected fellow in the American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education. Dr. Weiss is professor and director of Sport and Exercise Psychology at the University of Virginia.



Awarded to alumni who have made significant contributions to their profession, community and educational organizations through recognized leadership.

Nomination Procedures

Nomination procedures for the Distinguished Alumni Award are available at


2008 Dee Edington, Ph.D. 1968
Dr. Edington's teaching and research focus on the relationship between healthy lifestyles, vitality and quality of life, as they benefit both individuals and organizations. Dr. Edington is the author or co-author of over 400 articles, presentations, and several books, including Biology of Physical Activity, Biological Awareness, Frontiers of Exercise Biology, and The One Minute Manager Gets Fit. He has served on the faculty at the University of Massachusetts and the University of Michigan.


Presented to alumni teachers currently teaching in any school system who demonstrate evidence of service and achievement above and beyond what is expected.

Nomination Procedures

Nomination procedures for the Outstanding K-12 Teacher Award are available at  


None to date


Presented to alumni administrators at any level within any school system who have made outstanding and continuing contributions to the educational community.

Nomination Procedures

Nomination procedures for the Outstanding Alumni K-12 Administrator Awar are available at  


1999 Brian P. Wolcott
Mr. Wolcott spent nearly 20 years as a teacher, coach and administrator, first as a physical education teacher and coach at Groves High School and later as director of athletics, health and physical education at Plymouth-Canton Schools. He developed the physical education curriculum at Groves, and coached a variety of boys and girls high school sports in both school districts. Mr. Wolcott’s service activities include a four-year term as president of the Michigan Association of Heath, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance.