Lebanon Valley College Announces Alumni Award Winners

The 2016 Alumni award winners pose for a photo with President Lewis E. Thayne

Lebanon Valley College announced four major alumni award winners Sunday, Oct. 9 as part of the College’s 150th Anniversary Homecoming Weekend (Oct. 7–9). The Creative Achievement Award, June Herr Award in Education, D. Clark Carmean Award in Admission, and Young Alumni Award winners, as selected from among LVC’s 16,000+ outstanding graduates by the Alumni Awards Committee, were presented during the Alumni Luncheon.

Kristina J. Laakko Stroh ’93 received the Creative Achievement Award, which is presented for distinguished creative accomplishments in the arts and journalism. Stroh received a psychology degree, with a double concentration in developmental and clinical psychology, from LVC, and also minored in sociology and social work. She later earned a mastery certificate in DIR theory, and certifications in therapeutic listening, interactive metronome, and integrated listening systems. 

Throughout her career, Stroh has served as a Qualified Mental Retardation Professional, certified mental health delegate—crisis intervention counselor, HUD-residential social services counselor, and family crisis therapist. Today, she is the founder and executive director of All the Difference Inc., a 501 (c) nonprofit organization in Delaware. Stroh previously stated “My greatest joy in the professional and personal world is working with children. I strongly believe in the power of learning and strengthening development through play and the relationships built therein.”

Mark W. Wells ’99 received the June Herr Outstanding Educator of the Year Award, which memorializes the late Dr. June E. Herr ’34, chair emeritus of education. The award honors an alumnus who has made extraordinary contributions to the field of education. 

Wells double majored in psychology and sociology at LVC, later earning his M.Ed. in school counseling from Wilmington University. He began his career as a social worker with the Division of Family Services for the State of Delaware, later serving as a family crisis therapist and program support administrator for the state. 

In 2006, Wells joined the faculty of the New Castle County Vo-Tech School District as a school counselor, where he assists students in the areas of academic achievement, personal and social growth, and career development. He is also an adjunct professor at Wilmington University where he teaches in the school of counseling’s master of education program. In 2013, Wells was named Delaware’s High School Counselor of the Year, and in 2014 was named a semi-finalist for the national School Counselor of the Year. 

Rebecca M. Elliott ’98 received the D. Clark Carmean Award in Admission, which is awarded for notable service to LVC’s Office of Admission, especially with new student referral and recruitment. Elliott is in her 19th year as a mathematics teacher in the Cocalico School District, and 9th year as an assistant field hockey coach at LVC, where she earned a degree in mathematics, later earning her M.Ed. from Wilkes University. 

In addition to coaching field hockey at LVC, Elliott remains active in the sport competing in several leagues and serving as an instructor at camps. At Cocalico, she actively supports LVC by encouraging students to apply to the College, where they have the opportunity to be supported by the unique Lutz Scholarship. Elliott has also led her students in the College’s Math Quiz Bowl competition. 

At Cocalico Elliott is an advisor to Army4One, a student-run Bible study that meets weekly and does various service projects throughout the year. Their annual participation in the 30-Hour Famine has raised over $21,000 to date, for those starving in various parts of the world.

Rachel A. Moore ’08 received the Young Alumni Award, which recognizes an individual who graduated within the past 15 years for achievements in one’s profession, and significant service to the community or College. She graduated from LVC with a double major in political science and Spanish, and completed an internship with a member of Parliament while studying abroad in London, later earning her master’s in communications from Penn State Harrisburg.

Following graduation from LVC, Moore has held several positions in state government and is currently the new media director for the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Caucus. She is responsible for a comprehensive integrated social media strategy for the Senate Democratic Caucus. In 2010, Moore was recognized by Politics PA as a Rising Star under 30.

Moore has remained active with her alma mater, including serving as a panelist for the 2011 Women’s Leadership Symposium, student mentor through Career Connections, and as a current member of the LVC Leadership Council.