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2017 Alumni Awardees
Heather Morgan ’02 | Alumni Achievement Award
Heather Morgan has made significant contributions to her home state of Kansas since graduating with a degree in Secondary History Education in 2002. After obtaining a Master in Public Administration from Kansas State, she launched a 15-year career in public service including positions with the governor's budget office and the Kansas Juvenile Justice Authority. She was the first Leavenworth County Manager, and she served as a lobbyist in Topeka for improved child welfare, health care, and behavioral health care in Kansas. Currently, as the Director of Engagement and Economic Development, she serves as the executive director of Project 17 at the Kansas State University Advanced Manufacturing Institute. She was instrumental in launching this initiative which created a 17-county regional economic development project that works to address economic vitality, generational poverty, health and civic leadership issues throughout the 17 counties in Southeast Kansas.
Meriah (Forbes) Moore, M.D. ’11 | Young Alumna Award
After graduating in 2011, Meriah (Forbes) Moore went right to work toward her goal of becoming a medical doctor. She graduated from The University of Kansas School of Medicine−Wichita in 2016, earning both Alpha Omega Alpha and Gold Humanism Honors for academic performance and service. During her medical training, she served on the Committee for Academic and Professional Conduct and conducted public health research about healthy food access in rural Kansas. A highlight of her medical training was caring for patients at Zimba Mission Hospital in Zambia, Africa. She is currently in her second year of Internal Medicine Residency at Virginia Mason Hospital in Seattle, WA, where she focuses on primary care and quality improvement.
Marla (Morgan) Beikman ’64 and Lee Beikman ’65 | Alumni Service Award
Once biology lab partners at KWU, Marla and Lee, who have settled near Dallas, TX, have found numerous ways to be engaged at KWU over the past five decades. Marla served on the Board of Trustees for eight years, including a stint as board secretary and several years as chair of the Advancement Committee. As Pioneer Society members, they have provided leadership gifts to the Graves Family Sports Complex and Mabee Arena, have made numerous gifts to Fine Arts and a variety of special projects—many targeted to students—throughout the years. They also have joined the KWU Choir on tours to Europe in 2014 and to the British Isles and Ireland in 2010. Giving back was a value modeled by Marla’s mother, Margaret, who contributed funds in honor of Marla’s father, Everett C. Morgan ’37, to support the Morgan Strength Training Center and the Morgan Family Scholarship.
Ken Ebert ’17 and Karen Ebert ’17 | Alumni By Choice Award
Ken has been the team leader of a successful financial planning business for more than 25 years, where Karen also works as an administrative assistant. The Eberts are excellent examples of how a local business can engage in successful partnerships with a local university to which it has little affiliation. Ken has shared his financial acumen with the university by serving on the Foundation Board, in which his leadership has re-energized the Foundation’s Heritage Committee. He is currently chair of the Foundation Board and has also served as vice chair. Ken and Karen served as co-chairs of the 2016 Night with the Yotes, for which Waddell & Reed was the presenting sponsor. They opened their home in June 2017 to host more than 75 members of the Board of Trustees and Pioneer Society, in which they are members, and they can often be seen at a variety of athletic events. Waddell & Reed, a founding member of KWU’s Corporate Circle, has hired KWU business students as interns and recently transitioned one to full-time staff.