Alumnus of the Year

This award is given annually to an alumnus of the BYU MPA program who has demonstrated extraordinary service and leadership in the public and nonprofit sectors and in his or her community. The recipient also exhibits high standards of excellence and has gained the respect and loyalty of colleagues, peers, and family. The award is named for Norman Dale Wright, an MPA alumnus and long-time BYU professor.

Year Recipient Title Speech
2019 Doral Vance (MPA, 1980) Criminal Investigation Unit Manager, Utah State Tax Commission Text
2018 Christopher Brady (MPA, 1989) City Manager, Mesa, AZ Text
2017 Brett T. Swigert (EMPA, 2004) Lieutenant Colonel, United States Air Force Text
2016 Steve Thacker (MPA, 1978) City Manager, Centerville, Utah Text
2015 D. Bryce Baker (MPA, 1983) Senior Advisor to the Deputy Associate Director for Pay and Leave, U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Text
2014 Ruth Ann Jefferies (MPA, 1971) Property Tax Specialist, Utah State Tax Commission Text
2013 David Oyler (MPA, 1997) City Manager, Spanish Fork, Utah Text
2012 Gwen Young Holm (MPA, 1983) Associate Director Mission Support, NASA Dryden Flight Research Text or video
2011 Francine Giani (EMPA, 1991) Executive Director of Commerce, State of Utah Text
2006 Jonathan Gardner (MPA, 1980) Director of Southern Arizona, VA Healthcare System Text
2004 Karen Suzuki-Okabe (EMPA, 1989) Director of State Division of Human Resource Management, State of Utah Text
2003 John C. Darrington (MPA, 1972) City Manager, Richland, Washington Text
2002 J. Leon Sorenson (MA, 1967) Director, Utah Medical Association