Loyola University Chicago

Gannon Center for Women and Leadership

Coffey Award Recipients


Tina Stretch, Mundelein College '66, a woman of commitment and passion, has been the executive director of the Little Brothers-Friends of the Elderly for eight years, after starting as a donor in the 1970s and as a volunteer in the 1990s. Stretch combines her personal concern for the elderly with her strong administrative skills, thus providing the needed resources and programming to enhance their final years.

Prior to joining the Little Brothers, Stretch was the executive director for Business Executive for Economic Justice and once served as the associate director for Open Lands Project, a land conservation organization.

Sharon Gist Gilliam, Mundelein College '65,  has been actively involved in public policy research, education and public employee recruitment and retention for most of her career. She is the Chief Operation Officer of Unison-Maximus, Inc. one of America's largest government service companies devoted to providing state, local and federal government services practice. Ms. Gilliam also served for four years as Chief Operating Officer for the City of Chicago, where she was responsible for policy implementation and a total operating and capital budget of $4 billion.

Ms. Gilliam's previous experience also includes four years service with the District of Columbia Government as Budget Officer for the Department of Housing and Community Development and service in the City of Chicago government as Acting Commissioner of the Department of Consumer Services.

Patricia O'Donnell Ewers, Mundelein College '57, is an educational consultant, whose clients include DePaul University, Roosevelt University, and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Previously, she was the fifth president of Pace University and the first woman to lead the institution. As Chief executive office of Pace, Dr. Ewers led a diversified, comprehensive University with a budget of more than $172 million; an endowment in excess of $100 million; and more that 13,000 men and women on five campuses in New York City and Westchester County studying in undergraduate, graduate and specialized programs through the Pace's College, Schools, and Institute. Prior to this position, Dr. Ewers was the chief academic officer and a Professor of English at DePaul University, where she spent most of her professional life.

Barbara Baynes Mahoney
, Mundelein College '53, is a highly successful watercolor artist whose extraordinary life has lifted the minds and hearts of others, not only through her artistic accomplishments, but through her dedication, commitment and support to others.

A graduate of Mundelein College and the School of the Art Institute, Ms. Baynes Mahoney has an impressive list of paintings in select corporate collections, including Blue Cross Blue Shield, Borg Warner Corp., Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Illinois Tool works and The Northern Trust Bank.

Her works can also be found in selected group exhibitions such as the American Watercolor society National Tour, the Artists Guild of Chicago, Los Angeles' Kwok Wai Lau Gallery, the Wisconsin Festival of Arts in Milwaukee and the Chicago University Club.

She has also created posters for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and the 1996 Democratic Convention, among others.

Alice Bourke Hayes, Mundelein College '59, is President Emerita, University of San Diego, where she was president 1995 to 2003. In recent years, Hayes served as executive vice president and provost at Saint Louis University, and for 27 years before at Loyola University Chicago, where she served as vice president for academic affairs, associate academic vice president, dean for the natural sciences and chairperson of the department of natural science. From 1960 to 1962, she conducted mycology research for the Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium.

Hayes is on the boards of trustees of The Pulitzer Publishing Co., St. Louis Science Center, The Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis and Catholic Charities. She has been a member of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Space Biology Program and served on advisory panels of the National Science Foundation.

Hayes won awards for leadership and service from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the Holocaust Memorial Foundation.

Mary M. Dwyer, PhD, Mundelein College '72, is president and CEO of IES, the Institute for the International Education of Students, one of the nation's oldest, largest and most reputable not-for-profit organizations providing study abroad programs to U.S. college and university students. IES has educationed more than 60,000 students since its founding in 1950.

Prior to IES, Dr. Dwyer was a faculty member in the college of Medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) for 18 years and the campus Executive Associate Vice Chancellor for Research. In these capacities she taught health policy, organizational change and leadership at the graduate level and oversaw multiple research development offices and research centers. She was awarded more than $4.5 million in support for her own research while at UIC.

The Honorable June Carter Perry, Mundelein College '65, is U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Sierra Leone and former U.S. Ambassador to the Kingdom of Lesotho. Ms. Carter Perry's previous Foreign Service assignments include Deputy Chief of Mission in Madagascar and the Central African Republic. She has also served in France, Zambia, Zimbabwe and in Washington with th Department of State.

Janet W. Sisler, Mundelein College '74 and '82, began her career in education at Mother Guerin High School, and then moved to the Office of Catholic Schools.  Currently, she works for the Franciscan Sisters of Chicago, where she is the Executive Director of the Madonna Foundation.  She is also the President of the Franciscan Community Benefit Services, through which she coordinates charitable work for women, children, and the elderly.

In the early days of the Madonna Foundation, Jan worked to engage the Gannon Scholars in collaborating on a leadership retreat for the Madonna Scholars.  The Gannon Scholars have led retreats for the Madonna Scholars for the last four years and the two groups have recently developed long-term mentoring relationships.  Jan also supports the Gannon Center as a member of the Mundelein Alumni Advisory Board and the Gannon Center’s Spirit of Mundelein Club.

Jacqueline Powers Doud, Mundelein College '62, has been the eleventh president, and first lay president, of Mount St. Mary's College in Los Angeles since 2000.  Prior to her current appointment, she served as the school's provost, vice president of academic affairs, dean of faculty, and as a professor of education.  She has spent 40 years working in higher education, over 30 of which in a senior administrative capacity, serving Mundelein College, the University of La Verne, Woodbury University, and Mount St. Mary's. 

Dr. Doud has also served as a consultant, advisor and contributor for several studies related to higher education through organizations including the Claremont Higher Education Management Institute and the Council for the Advancement of Experiential Learning.  She has served as a member and chair of the accrediting teams for the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and is a member of the board of directors of the California Institute for Nursing and Healthcare, and the board of visitors of the Claremont Graduate University School of Educational Studies. She just completed two terms on the board of directors of the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities.

Mary Ann Smith, Mundelein College '85, is the alderman of the 48th ward in Chicago.  She was appointed in 1989 by Mayor Richard M. Daley to replace Kathy Osterman, who stepped down to take a position in the Daley administration and was re-elected in 1991.  Mrs. Smith has been re-elected to serve five full terms in office.  She is known for her concern for the environment and particularly of Chicago's lakefront.  She is chair of the City Council Committee on Parks.  Formerly, she served as vice-chair of the City Council Subcommittee on the Chicago Lakefront, as vice-chair of the Lake Michigan Federation, and she was a founding member of PCB's Gone.  She earned a United Nations Environment Programme Award for Citizen Action to Protect the Global Environment.  She also serves on the city's Advisory Council on Chicago Green Development. 

Kumiko Watanuki, Mundelein College '84 and '87, is an active professor, business consultant, and trainer with more than 35 years of experience in corporate planning, marketing, human resources administration, management training and development, operations management and organization development and transformation. Her extensive professional track record includes work with both for-profit and not-for-profit organizations.

Since 1992, Dr. Watanuki has owned a private consulting firm, Watanuki & Associates, and has served as a adjunct professor at DePaul University. She has traveled around the world for business and currently travels annually to Bankok, Thailand, as a visiting professor at Assumption University.

Dr. Watanuki has published a number of articles, books and presentation, including the autobiographical East Meets West: Life Story (2007) and her dissertation, "Excellent and Culturally Sensitive Teaching and Learning in Adult and Higher Education" (2005).

Elaine M. Schuster, Mundelein College '68, a national leader in education, recently served as the education fellow at the Kellog School of Management at Northwestern University. Joining the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in 1964, she stayed with the order until 1970, an experience she credits with preparing well well for a career in Catholic educational ministry and leadership. Dr. Schuster started her career as an English teacher at Chicago-area high schools for girls. She then worked in the education office of the Chicago Archdiocese for seven years before returning to Mundelein College as vice president of marketing and dean of admissions.

After earning her PhD from the University of Illinois at Chicago, Dr. Schuster served as the principal of Immaculate Heart of Mary High School in Westchester, Illinois, for four year. In 1991, she became the first lay person named superintendent of Catholic schools for the Archdiocese of Chicago, the largest non-public system in the US. At the time of her service, the Archdiocese contained 325 schools, 130,000 students, and 6,000 teachers.

In 2001, Dr. Schuster left the Archdiocese to become president and CEO of the Golden Apple Foundation. During her tenure there, she is credited with Stabilizing the Golden Apple Foundation's fiscal condition, implementing a successful strategic plan, and enhancing the image of the foundation.

Dr. Schuster's 45-year career in education has earned her a number of plaudits. In 2001, she received the C. C. Albert Koob Merit Award from the National Catholic Educational Association and was also presented by Francis Cardinal George with the Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice Award for outstanding service to the Church.

Dr. Judith A. Mayotte, Mundelein College '62, has been an internationally recognized leader in global refugee resettlement since the 1980s. As a television and documentary producer, she traveled around the world documenting the world’s displaced people.  She has won an Emmy, a Peabody Award, and a MacArthur Foundation award.  She has served as a special advisor to the U.S. Department of State on refugees; and as a college professor organized Marquette’s successful immersion program in South Africa.

Dr. Adrienne Y. Bailey, Mundelein College '66

In March 1965, Adrienne Y. Bailey joined a group of Mundelein College students to march with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in support of civil rights activism in Selma, Alabama. This experience influenced her life’s work and personal commitment to making education systems more just, effective, and transformative.

She has worked in the fields of education and social justice to support disenfranchised youth living in urban and rural communities throughout the world. She is currently a senior consultant at the Panasonic Foundation, where she provides strategic coaching and equity solutions to urban school districts. She also serves as a consultant to Cornerstone Literacy, the US Office of Education, and volunteer coordinator for the Access to Success/University of Stellenbosch and Mofu Primary School partnership programs based in Durban, South Africa.

Bailey is well known for her passionate advocacy of education equity. She earned her BA in French from Mundelein College, MEd from Wayne State University, and PhD from Northwestern University.

Joyce R. Saxon, Mundelein College ’49, is a pioneer for women, one whose professional career shattered the glass ceiling at the executive level in the advertising industry, demonstrating the power of a Mundelein College education and the determination of its graduates.

Saxon served as the first female senior vice president at J. Walter Thompson (JWT), one of the largest and oldest advertising agencies in the U.S. In her 25-year tenure with JWT, her responsibilities included positions as spot broadcast manager and syndication manager. Extremely accomplished in both roles, she placed $51 million each year in broadcast advertising and identified TV networks throughout the U.S. for syndicated news programs, one of which won the coveted Peabody Award for Excellence in Journalism.

Saxon also worked in the culinary arts industry as the personnel director for Culinary Enterprises, which has staffed the U.S. Senior Open, Ravinia Park concerts, and the Kentucky Derby. She is a co-founder of Chicago Gourmets, a culinary organization of over 300 members that seeks to educate and provide diverse culinary experiences to the community. Saxon’s influence and capability has greatly impacted the cultural landscape of the city of Chicago.

As an active member in the Chicago community, Saxon serves on the City Club of Chicago Board of Governors and was the executive director of the Old Town Chamber of Commerce and manager of the Wells Street Art Fair. Her involvement with TV, radio, and cable continues as treasurer-for-life of the Broadcast Advertising Club of Chicago.

At Loyola, Saxon has been very involved for many years with the Loyola University Museum of Art (LUMA) as a docent, member, and major contributor. Beyond Loyola, she has served as a Chicago Art Institute Sustaining Fellow and a Newberry Library President’s Fellow. She is also a member of the Dead Writers Board of Directors.