PRESIDENTIAL MEDAL OF DISTINCTION. Lyndon State College President Joe Bertolino has announced that he will award a Presidential Medal of Distinction to both Jan Eastman and Bill Stenger at Commencement, Sunday, May 19.
This new award was created by Bertolino to honor prominent individuals who have had a significant and positive impact on Lyndon State College, the Northeast Kingdom, and the State of Vermont. Members of the LSC community were invited to submit nominees this winter and spring. The medal was designed by LSC Visual Arts student Brandon Heanssler.
Jan Eastman has served as the president of The Richard A. Snelling Center for Government and as the secretary of the Agency of Natural Resources in the administrations of Governors Snelling and Dean. She received her Bachelor of Arts in History from The University of Vermont and her Juris Doctorate from Northeastern University. Currently, Jan serves as an auditor for the Town of Peacham and has recently been appointed to the Vermont Rail Advisory Council and the Vermont Energy Generation Siting Policy Commission.
Eastman’s connection to Lyndon started over 100 years ago – - her great grandfather helped with horses at TN Vail’s summer mansion, the property that became Lyndon Teachers College in 1951. Her mother and grandmother were both graduates of the Lyndon Normal School and her grandmother, a life-long teacher, returned later in life to earn her B.S. from Lyndon Teachers College.
Jan and her husband John Marshall have given generously to Lyndon. In 2003, they created an endowment in honor of Jan’s mother and grandmother. Jan served as the NEK Co-Chair of the college’s successful $10 million Second Century Campaign and helped meet the campaign’s goal by funding two donor challenges. Jan has served on President Carol Moore’s Board of Visitors, as the president of the LSC Foundation, and is now the Foundation’s vice president.
She recognizes Lyndon’s role in nurturing her family’s commitment to education and how Lyndon continues to transform the lives of first-generation college students.
Bill Stenger is the president and CEO of Jay Peak, a partner at Burke Mountain, and is the director of the Northeast Kingdom Economic Development Initiative. The Initiative’s projects are expected to create thousands of jobs and pump $500 million in business investments in the NEK region.
Stenger’s impressive resume includes chairing the Vermont Travel & Recreation Council, the Lake Champlain Chamber of Commerce, and the Vermont Ski Areas Association. He is general partner for largest regional center project in Vermont and one of the most substantial EB-5 projects in the nation. He was a delegate to the White House Conference on Travel and Tourism and is currently an economic advisor to Governor Peter Shumlin. In 2011, he was named Vermont Citizen of the Year by the Vermont Chamber of Commerce.
Stenger has had a long and fruitful relationship with the college. He was an adjunct professor in Lyndon’s innovative Mountain Recreation Management program from 1987 to 2010. He has worked extensively with the college on initiatives to create a well-educated, 21st century workforce to help fill the thousands of jobs resulting from EB-5 visa investments Stenger is bringing to the area. He has been an active and enthusiastic participant in numerous business and education forums hosted by the college. He is widely known for his advocacy of the “TEAM” economy, a description of the synergy of the region’s Tourism, Education, Agricultural, and Manufacturing sectors.
Stenger and his wife Mary live in Newport, Vt.. They have three grown children and five grandchildren.
Lyndon State College’s 2013 Commencement will be Sunday, May 19 at 11 a.m., under the tent on the College’s soccer field. The ceremony will also be broadcast live in the climate-controlled Alexander Twilight Theatre or at http://new.livestream.com/accounts/3486823/events/2091354. Public Safety officials will be on campus all day to direct guests to available parking areas. Shuttle service and/or accommodations will be available for those unable to walk distances. For further details, please visit the Lyndon Commencement website link at http://www.lyndonstate.edu/commencement.