2nd Annual Distinguished Alumni & Faculty Awards

2018 Selection Criteria

The Selection Process

The Alumni Association solicits nominations for the awards from all members of the school community. A committee of members of the Alumni Council, Reunion Committee and previous recipients reviews the materials submitted on each candidate and selects those candidates who are deemed most deserving of recognition and whose achievements most closely fit the category for which they have been nominated.

Submitting Your Nomination

Read the awards criteria and eligibility requirements before making your recommendations. A candidate may be nominated for more than one award category, and the selection committee reserves the right to grant an award for which the candidate has not been nominated. When submitting a nomination, follow these guidelines:

  • Review the questions to be answered for each award category and suggestions about supporting letters below.
  • Fill out and submit the official nomination form online.
  • Contact other alumni or individuals who would like to support your nominee; they can further strengthen your nomination by making their own. Ask them to submit a written letter of support to alumni@gulliverschools.org or they can fill in the nomination form.

Nomination and Supporting Letters

Though not required, the selection committee encourages you to submit additional supporting materials to help illustrate the scope of your candidate’s achievements. A strong nomination includes multiple letters and documents of support, including press and biographical information on the nominee. Examples include résumés, CVs, book reviews, news articles, etc.

Possible contacts include professional colleagues, former students, friends, or fellow volunteers. Letters that comment knowledgeably on the impact of the individual's specific achievements are the most important and helpful. Please share the criteria for the award and the suggested list of questions found in the nomination form with those who are writing letters in support of your candidate.

Nominations can be sent to alumni@gulliverschools.org.


To be eligible for an alumni or faculty award nomination, candidates must meet the following requirements:

  • Must be able physically able to participate in person at the award celebration at Reunion Weekend (June 1-3, 2017)
  • Cannot have previously received an award in the category for which the nomination is submitted.
  • Previous award winners may be nominated for a different category. It is recommended to allow more than five years to pass before nominating a candidate again for another category.

Distinguished Raider Award

The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes achievement of an exceptional nature in any field, vocational or voluntary.

This honor is reserved for those alumni who have attained and maintained extremely high stations in their chosen fields of endeavor and in their service to society.

Nomination Criteria:

  • Professional achievement: National/International success and achievement in a field of expertise
  • Public service: Significant contributions in areas of public service
  • Service: Active engagement to Gulliver or alumni relations

Though not required, the selection committee encourages you to submit letters of support that speak to the magnitude of the candidate's impact in the individual's profession and/or community. It is essential that your nomination materials describe and interpret your candidate’s accomplishments in terms that a reader can understand.

Hank Langston Award for Alumni Service

The Hank Langston Award is presented to an alumni who advances the mission of Gulliver through dedicated volunteer efforts in support of its programs, thereby ensuring Gulliver’s impact on our community and future generations of students.

A strong nomination includes letters of support from fellow alumni. Two are recommended.

Rising Star Award

The Rising Star Award recognizes a young alumni (those who received their diplomas within the last 10 years) who is already making significant contributions to greater society through professional or philanthropic work.

Nomination Criteria:

  • Community service, professional achievements, and other such accomplishments
  • Involvement with Gulliver alumni community

Marian C. Krutulis Faculty Award

The Marian C. Krutulis Faculty Award honors current or previous faculty/staff for extraordinary contributions to teaching and to the student experience of life within the Gulliver community.

Faculty/staff from across the school will be considered. Alumni that are also faculty may be considered. The candidate should have a long history with Gulliver and have made a significant impact on at least two generations of students.

Nomination Criteria:

  • Challenges, motivates, and encourages students to think independently
  • Guides and mentors students in making successful life/career choices
  • Sets high standards for student learning
  • Involved in the community beyond Gulliver
  • Remains actively engaged with the Gulliver alumni community

Speak from your own experiences and those of friends and former classmates. The selection committee encourages you to also submit at least two letters of support from former students, ideally spanning more than one generation.

Nominate Someone!

2017 Faculty & Staff Winners

The Gulliver Alumni Association is proud to announce the

2017 Distinguished Alumni and Faculty Award Recipients

Outstanding Raider Award

John C. Phelan '82

Co-Managing Partner and Co-Founder, MSD Capital, L.P.


The Outstanding Raider Awarded is presented to an alumnus who has attained and maintained extremely high stations in their chosen fields of endeavor and in their service to society.

John C. Phelan is a Co-Managing Partner and Co-Founder at MSD Capital, L.P. A leader in the finance world, he serves on the Board of Trustees of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, and on the Executive Council of the Whitney Museum. He is also on the Executive Council of the Cox School of Business, the North American Advisory Board of the London School of Economics, Harvard Business School Board of Deans Advisors, and is the Major Gift Chair of the Harvard Business School Class of 1990. Additionally, John is a Board Member of the Federal Enforcement Homeland Security Foundation.

Upon graduating from Gulliver, John received an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School in 1990 and graduated, cum laude with distinction, from Southern Methodist University (SMU) in 1986 with a B.A. in Economics and Political Science. He also holds a G.C. degree from the London School of Economics.

John has remained engaged with Gulliver and his entrepreneurial spirit encompasses the school's community values, including perseverance, problem solving, leadership and service. As a philanthropic leader and proud alumnus, he consistently supports Gulliver initiatives and is committed to the school's mission.

Thank you to those who submitted nominations and special gratitude to the nominations committee for selecting these talented award recipients.

Rising Star Award

James "Woody" Beckham '07

The Woody Foundation


The Rising Star Award recognizes a young alumnus making significant contributions to greater society through professional or philanthropic work.

On January 29, 2011, James "Woody" Beckham was seriously injured in a rugby game, sustaining a complete cervical spinal cord injury that rendered him paralyzed from the chest down. Later that year, the Beckham family formed the Woody Foundation, Inc., a not-for-profit organization which aims to increase awareness and raise funds for the recovery of people with paralysis and other disabilities.

Woody is active in the community through the Foundation's annual events which support various groups and organizations. He has created a collection of assistive devices, called Woody Packs, for people with limited hand functioning after experiencing personal challenges of adjusting to his new daily life after the accident.

As a Gulliver student, Woody was involved in engineering and robotics, Scuba Club and athletics, in addition to his community service efforts. He remains involved with the school and was recently recognized at a pep rally where a portion of the proceeds from the 2016 Make A Splash event were donated to the Woody Foundation. His work continues to inspire students to give back and create solutions.

Hank Langston Award for Alumni Service

Laura Pina Pequignot '82

General Manager at Art Miami


The Hank Langston Award for Alumni Service is presented to an alumnus who advances the mission of Gulliver through dedicated volunteer efforts in support of its programs, thereby ensuring Gulliver's impact on our community and future generations of students.

Since graduating from Gulliver in 1982, Laura has been a steady figure on the alumni scene. Serving as the Director of Alumni Relations for five years, she helped grow alumni involvement and set the stage for deepened alumni engagement. Having been promoted to the director position by another one of this year's award recipients, Linda Fitzgerald, she also served as Associate Director of Alumni Marketing.

Laura has volunteered in several roles with Gulliver, including the Alumni Advisory Council and the 2017 Alumni Reunion Committee. She has always been an active member and supporter of her alma mater, attending various events and socials throughout the years.

From her school days as a cheerleader and Key Club member to her current post on the Alumni Advisory Council, Laura embodies the spirit of Raider pride to the fullest extent.

Marian C. Krutulis Faculty Award

Linda Fitzgerald


The Marian C. Krutulis Faculty Award was established to honor current or previous faculty or staff for extraordinary contributions to the student experience of life within the Gulliver community while embodying the vision of our founder.

An icon in her 32 years of service to Gulliver and its students, Ms. Fitz had a very special way of making each student feel like individuals. She was lovingly strict, her door was always open and her infectious smile was endearing, even when she handed out pink slips!

During her tenure, Ms. Fitz served as Preparatory Attendance Officer, Dean of Students and Director of Alumni Relations. She also worked with the Parent Association for all of Gulliver's campuses and represented the school in community outreach initiatives. At the time of her retirement in 2012, Ms. Fitz had served as a positive influence for more than 5,700 of the 6,000 students to have graduated from the Prep in the history of Gulliver.

No matter the job title, Ms. Fitz always set out to make certain that Gulliver's students were receiving a superior education and becoming well-rounded individuals. She truly exemplifies Mrs. K's vision and commitment to Gulliver's community values.