Alumni Spotlight Archives
Rory O’Connor, Jr., B.A. Communications, ’95, received the FAU 2014 Distinguished Alumni Award. Rory was chosen for his service to our nation, service to our veterans, and service to FAU as an outstanding graduate. Rory was raised in South Florida and after high school served as a member of the U.S. Navy SEALs for eight years. He then returned to South Florida to pursue a degree in the School of Communication and Multimedia Studies. After graduation, Rory became a financial adviser and his 30-year career includes work as vice president of JP Morgan and financial advisor for Edward Jones Investments. He also created, and is now vice director of, the Tampa Bay Frogman Swim for the Navy SEAL Foundation, which aids active duty Naval Special Warfare personnel and their families. The event has raised more than $700,000 over four years and is used as a model for a nationwide series of swims/fundraisers for the Navy SEAL Foundation.
>> Judith Ortiz Cofer ’77 of Athens, GA, has been named the University of Georgia's 2013 recipient of the Southeastern Conference Faculty Achievement Award. She is currently the University’s Franklin Professor of English and Creative Writing. Ortiz Cofer is a two-time Pulitzer-Prize nominee and received the FAU Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters' Distinguished Alumna Award in 2012. Ortíz Cofer was inducted into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame in 2010 and in 1994, she became the first Hispanic to win the O. Henry Prize for her story “The Latin Deli”. In 1996, Ortíz Cofer and illustrator Susan Guevara became the first recipients of the Pura Belpre Award for Hispanic children’s literature.