ACPA Diamond Honorees | Class of 2020

The Diamond Honoree Program, established in 1999, is a way for those that care about students – and the research, scholarship, and programs that promote student development and success – to help advance our association’s efforts. Diamond Honorees are “Championed” by dedicated individuals who recognize their specific contributions and choose to raise funds in honor of each Diamond Honoree’s outstanding and sustained commitment to higher education through student affairs and student development. Those funds are then utilized to help sustain the ACPA Foundation in its support of the research, scholarship, and programs that advance our field as a whole.

You can help!  Join in the fundraising effort by supporting one of this year’s Diamond Honorees!

Kathy Adams Riester

Kathy Adams Riester

Kathy Adams Riester

Dr. Kathy Adams Riester is the Associate Vice Provost for Student Affairs and Executive Associate Dean of Students at Indiana University-Bloomington. Previously, Kathy was the Associate Dean of Students and Director of Parent and Family Programs at University of Arizona. 

Kathy recently completed her Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership at Northern Arizona University, where she studied relationships between first-generation college students and support people in their lives.

Kathy’s career-long emphasis on students as well as their parents and families as key factors in student success has positively affected the field. In addition, her contributions to the campuses where she has worked in terms of expressive speech, critical emergency response, and Greek Life are exceptional. 

In 2011 Kathy founded and served as the first chair of the ACPA Commission on Campus Safety and Emergency Preparedness. This Commission has led the field in discussions about First Amendment and crisis response. Kathy has frequently presented on related topics with other members of the Commission at ACPA and beyond, truly shaping the conversation about campus safety and speech.

Kathy is being honored as a Diamond Honoree for her lifelong commitment to the profession, her tremendous contributions to the field and the students with whom she has worked. 

Support Kathy
Rachel E. Aho

Rachel E. Aho

Rachel E. Aho

Rachel E. Aho serves as the Director of Housing at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, UT. In this role, she leads efforts to advance marketing, assessment, operations, event services, information technology, and human resource areas. As a scholar-practitioner for over 10 years, Rachel works diligently to support student success, push past status quo practices, and lead with thoughtful inquiry.

Rachel earned a B.A. from Concordia College, Moorhead and an M.S. in College Student Personnel from Western Illinois University.  She is a current Ph.D. student in the Education, Leadership & Policy program at the University of Utah where she studies institutional commitments to diversity and hiring practices.

Rachel believes in the power of professional development and service as seen through her leadership roles across local, regional, and national associations. She currently serves as a reviewer for the Journal of College and University Student Housing and is a past participant in ACUHO-I’s National Housing Training Institute (NHTI). Since 2007, Rachel has held numerous leadership positions within ACPA including the Assembly Coordinator for Communities of Practice, the inaugural Chair of the Commission for Campus Safety and Emergency Preparedness, and one of the co-authors for ACPA’s A Bold Vision Forward: A Framework for the Strategic Imperative for Racial Justice and Decolonization.

Support Rachel
Willie Banks

Willie Banks

Willie Banks

Willie L. Banks, Jr., Ph.D. serves as the Vice Chancellor, Student Affairs at the University of California, Irvine. Dr. Banks previously served as the Vice President for Student Affairs at Indiana State University (ISU) where he also held an appointment as an Assistant Professor within the Bayh College of Education. Prior to joining ISU, Banks worked for Cleveland State University (CSU) for three and a half years in a number of roles, including Interim Vice President for Student Affairs. 

Before CSU, Dr. Banks worked at the University of Georgia for 18 years in several positions including Associate Dean of Students for Intercultural Affairs. There, Banks held graduate faculty status in the College of Education.  Banks is involved with ACPA- College Student Educators International, Association of College Unions International (ACUI), Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA), and Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK) National Honor Society. Dr. Banks serves on the Board of Trustees for ODK. Previously, Banks served on the Board of Directors for the ACUI, the United Way of the Wabash Valley, and was member of the Terre Haute Rotary Club.

Dr. Banks received his undergraduate degree from Mercer University, and his Master’s and Ph.D. in College Student Affairs Administration from the University of Georgia.

Support Willie
Mimi Benjamin

Mimi Benjamin

Mimi Benjamin
Mimi Benjamin is Associate Professor of Student Affairs in Higher Education at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and served as a student affairs administrator for 19 years as a residence life professional, interim dean of students, and assistant to the vice president for student affairs.  She received her Ph.D. in educational leadership and policy studies from Iowa State University, M.A. in English from Clarion University of Pennsylvania, M.Ed. in educational leadership from Ohio University, and B.S. in secondary education/English from Clarion University of Pennsylvania.  Dr. Benjamin is the co-author/co-editor of four books, including the first edition of Maybe I Should . . . : Case Studies on Ethics for Student Affairs Professionals (2009) and the forthcoming second edition; Living-Learning Communities that Work: A Research-Based Model for Design, Delivery, and Assessment (2018); and Learning Communities from Start to Finish (New Directions for Student Services, 149) (2015).  She served on the editorial board for the “Research in Brief” and “On the Campus” sections of the Journal of College Student Development, on the ACPA Commission for Professional Preparation Directorate, and on ACPA’s Ethics Committee.  In 2006 she received NASPA’s national Mid-Level Student Affairs Professional Award and was named an ACPA Emerging Scholar in 2010.  

Support Mimi
Matthew Antonio Bosch

Matthew Antonio Bosch

Matthew Antonio Bosch

Matthew Antonio Bosch serves as Dean of Student Inclusive Excellence and Assistant Professor at Elon University, NC. With degrees from University of Pennsylvania, Harvard, & Cornell, Dr. Bosch’s professional experience spans Academic Affairs, Admissions, Diversity Affairs, and Student Affairs. While Chief Diversity Officer for North Hennepin Community College, he was elected the 1st Latinx President of the Minnesota College Personnel Association, earning statewide recognition from the MN Hispanic Chamber of Commerce as “Top 25 Latino Leaders On The Rise.”

Dr. Bosch’s research focuses on the career advancement and intersectional identities of LGBTQ+ professionals in higher education. Providing leadership for diversity and identity centers, he teaches courses in Women’s, Gender, and Sexualities Studies and Elon’s Masters of Higher Education program. Within ACPA, his leadership spans the governing board, assembly leadership, state chapter presidents, network directorates, coalition directorates, and foundation board, also serving as an annual conference presenter and panelist.

A first-generation college graduate, Dr. Bosch continues to appreciate how people “took a chance on him” throughout his schooling and career. Crediting ACPA among his list of chance-takers, he strives to give back to the association, igniting his passion to pay it forward so students and professionals feel validated, valued, and victorious.

Support Matthew Antonio
Daniel Bureau

Daniel Bureau

Daniel Bureau
Dan Bureau, PhD has worked in higher education for 23 years. He is currently the Associate Vice President for Student Academic Success at the University of Memphis. He is also the current President for the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS). He served as the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors President in 2004 and has held roles in ACPA and NASPA. His areas of focus have included fraternity and sorority life, leadership programs, student affairs assessment, and first-generation college students. He has served at the University of New Mexico, University of Illinois, Indiana University, and the University of Memphis. He has presented at several association conferences and has authored peer-reviewed articles, book chapters, and many other publications. He is the co-editor and contributor to Leading Assessment for Student Success: Ten Tenets That Change Culture and Practice in Student Affairs.

Support Daniel
Kristan Cilente Skendall

Kristan Cilente Skendall

Kristan Cilente Skendall
Dr. Kristan Cilente Skendall has been a proud college student educator for nearly two decades. After earning her bachelor’s degree at the College of William & Mary, her work brought her to the University of Arizona, where she earned her master’s degree, and later to Georgetown University, the U.S. Department of Education, and the University of Maryland, where she earned her Ph.D. Kristan has been part of the Maryland community since 2005 and loves working with the Gemstone Honors Program, one of the Honors living-learning communities on campus. She also serves as an Affiliate Assistant Professor in the CSP master’s program. Kristan’s research focus is primarily related to college student leadership and living-learning communities. Additionally, Kristan has published several articles and book chapters related to student leadership, alternative spring breaks, multiple identity development, and new professionals needs. Kristan has taught graduate-level courses on research methods, leadership, and student development in addition to undergraduate leadership courses and Gemstone courses. In addition, Kristan has been an active member of ACPA, most recently serving as the Director of External Relations, and also a member is the CAS Council, representing the National Clearinghouse for Leadership Programs. She is grateful to ACPA, UMD, her family, and friends for their support—especially John and Will.

Support Kristan
Andrea D. Domingue

Andrea D. Domingue

Andrea D. Domingue
Andrea D. Domingue, Ed.D., is a 16-year veteran in the field of Student Affairs and Social Justice Education. Dr. Domingue currently holds the position of Assistant Dean of Students for Diversity and Inclusion at Davidson College and visiting lecturer at University of North Carolina Charlotte’s Educational Administration program. She began her career in Student Affairs, working in Residence Life, LGBT Student Services, and Women’s Centers at various top-tier public and private universities. A scholar-practitioner, Dr. Domingue prioritizes opportunities to contribute to knowledge and supporting emerging professionals. She teaches both graduate courses on leadership, college student development, social justice education, and intergroup dialogue. She also most recently published her co-edited book “Black Women and Social Justice Education: Legacies and Lessons” through SUNY Press and served as a co-author for ACPA’s “A Bold Vision Forward: A Framework for the Strategic Imperative for Racial Justice and Decolonization.” Lastly, Dr. Domingue is a recognized national leader through her work as an educational consultant leadership and equity initiatives in both academia and in the nonprofit world. She is in her 10th consecutive year as an ACPA leader and serves as Assembly Coordinator for Commissions on the Governing Board.

Support Andrea
Kimberly Griffin

Kimberly Griffin

Kimberly Griffin

Dr. Kimberly Griffin is an Associate Professor in the College of Education at the University of Maryland. Dr. Griffin’s research explores how the experiences and environments students and faculty encounter on college campuses shape their outcomes, specifically their relationships, achievement, and career development. Her work has focused in three intersecting areas: diversity within the Black higher education community; mentoring and professional development; and efforts to increase diversity in graduate and faculty communities. Her interest in these areas have led her to pursue research in several areas, including high achieving students of color, student veterans, diversity and racial climate, Black faculty members’ participation in mentoring relationships, and factors promoting diversity in graduate education. 

Dr. Griffin was recognized with the Promising Scholar/Early Career Award by the Association for the Study of Higher Education in 2013, and was named an Emerging Scholar by ACPA in 2010. She regularly speaks at professional conferences and meetings, and has published her work widely in peer reviewed journals such as the American Educational Research Journal, the Review of Higher Education, Journal of College Student Development, and Teachers College Record. She sits on multiple editorial boards, and is an associate editor of the Journal of Diversity in Higher Education.

Support Kimberly
Deb Hunter

Deb Hunter

Deb Hunter
2020 marks the 50th year since the founding of the  University of Vermont’s graduate program in Higher Education and Student Affairs and for the past 35 of those years, Professor Deb Hunter has been a central figure in shaping UVM’s program and positioning it as one of the leaders in graduate preparation in our field.  Her impact upon our profession is vast, as over 560 master’s degree and doctoral students have benefited from her commitment to preparing students for the “haunting questions” that accompany  the complexities of student affairs professional practice.  Deb’s leadership with UVM’s annual Legal Issues in Higher Education conference since its inception 29 years ago has resulted in bringing together academic and student affairs administrators to address timely legal issues affecting our institutions.  Dr. Hunter’s allegiance to ACPA has been steadfast, as she has long served as a member and Chair of ACPA’s Commission on Professional Preparation and as a contributing presenter at our conferences. ACPA honored her in 1992 as an Annuit Coeptis Senior Professional. 

Support Deb
Marc P. Johnston-Guerrero

Marc P. Johnston-Guerrero

Marc P. Johnston-Guerrero
Marc Johnston-Guerrero, Ph.D., is Associate Professor in the Higher Education and Student Affairs (HESA) program at The Ohio State University and is affiliated faculty with the Asian American Studies program. Marc has worked in multicultural affairs and student services units across several institutions, including the University of Arizona, New York University, and Michigan State University. His research interests focus on diversity and social justice issues in higher education and student affairs, with specific attention to college students negotiating and making meaning of race and racism and Multiracial/mixed race issues. Marc has been active in ACPA since 2006, having served as a past Co-Chair of the Multiracial Network (MRN) within the Coalition for Multicultural Affairs (CMA), and currently serving as Member-at-Large, Faculty-Elect for the ACPA Governing Board. He is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Higher Education and editorial board member for ACPA’s Journal of College Student Development and the Journal Committed to Social Change on Race and Ethnicity. He received a Ph.D. in Education (emphasis: Higher Education & Organizational Change) from UCLA and a M.A. Student Affairs Administration from Michigan State University.

Support Marc
Leilani Kupo

Leilani Kupo

Leilani Kupo

V. Leilani Kupo, Ph.D. (Kanaka Maoli) [she/her/hers] was raised away from her ancestral land of Maui and depended on her ‘ohana [family] to teach her ancestral knowledge from afar. Receiving her B.A. from Ripon College (WI), M.Ed. from James Madison University (VA), and Ph.D. from Bowling Green State University (OH) in Higher Education Administration were points of great celebration for her ‘ohana.  These experiences also helped Leilani understand the ways in which education and schooling both liberated and caused trauma to her, her ‘ohana, and her community.

Leilani currently serves as the Associate Dean of Students for Educational Equity and Access, Learning Support, and Transition Programs/ Director of the Calvin E. Bright Success Center at the University of California, Merced. Leilani has served as a scholar-practitioner in student affairs since 2000.  Throughout her professional practice, she has centered serving students, community needs, and her cultural values in her practice. 

Leilani has served ACPA in a number of capacities throughout her career, serving as a CWI Directorate member, CWI Emerging Scholar in Residence, selected as one of ACPA’s 2014 Emerging Scholars, and currently serves on the Governing Board as Member-at-Large Representative for Mid-Level.

Support Leilani
Bernie Liang

Bernie Liang

Bernie Liang

Bernie Liang is the Director of the Center for Student Involvement at Seattle University, where he oversees initiatives designed to engage students in campus life and leadership development.  Throughout his 20+ years in student affairs, he has dedicated his leadership to creating inclusive environments that encourage deep interrogation of our systemic inequities in higher education.  

A first-generation gay Asian American cisgender man, Bernie received his Master of Arts in Education in Student Development Administration at Seattle University in 2002.  He has been involved with ACPA for 18 years, providing leadership to the Asian Pacific American Network (APAN), the Coalition for Multicultural Affairs (CMA), and as part of the convention team for Las Vegas and Montreal.  He presented on topics including trailing spouse experiences in student affairs, supporting LGBT students of color, and navigating the mid-level manager landscape as a person of color. In 2012, he was honored to co-author a chapter on Multiracial and Multiethnic APIA professionals in higher education, published in the text Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in Higher Education: Research and perspectives on identity, leadership, and success.  

At home, Bernie is proud to be a loving husband to Ryan Hamachek, and a father to their baby Eli Liang-Hamachek.

Support Bernie
Matthew Mayhew

Matthew Mayhew

Matthew Mayhew

Matthew J. Mayhew is the William Ray and Marie Adamson Flesher Professor of Educational Administration with a focus on Higher Education and Student Affairs at The Ohio State University. He received his BA from Wheaton College, Illinois; his master’s degree from Brandeis University; and his PhD from the University of Michigan. Before coming to OSU, he served as an associate professor at New York University and an administrator at Fisher College and the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

He has focused his research on examining the relationship between college and its influence on student learning and democratic outcomes. To support the study of college and its impact on student development and learning, he has been awarded over 20 million dollars in funding from sources including the United States Department of Education; the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation; the Merrifield Family Trust; the National Science Foundation; and an anonymous non-religiously affiliated organization with interests in social cooperation. He is the current editor for the Digest of Recent Research. He has been on the editorial boards of the Journal of Higher Education, Research in Higher Education, and the Journal of College Student Development. He recently received the American Educational Research Association Religion and Education SIG Emerging Scholar Award.

Support Matthew
Rosemary Perez

Rosemary Perez

Rosemary Perez

Dr. Rosie Perez is an Assistant Professor and the Division Head of Higher Education in the School of Education at Iowa State University (ISU). She is a higher education scholar who leverages the strengths of student development and organizational theories to explore individual and organizational learning and development in collegiate contexts. Her faculty work is informed by her experiences as a student affairs educator and reflect her commitment to empowering and working alongside others to create a more equitable and just society. 

 Dr. Perez’s research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, Spencer Foundation, and Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, and has been published in venues such as Journal of College Student Development, Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, Journal of Higher Education, and the Review of Higher Education. Her contributions to higher education and student affairs have been recognized with a 2017-2019 ACPA-College Student Educators International Emerging Scholars Award, the 2019 ISU College of Human Sciences Early Achievement in Teaching Award, and the 2016 ISU Multicultural Student Affairs Faculty/Staff Change Agent Award. She has been engaged in ACPA throughout her career and has served on the CWI Directorate, 2016 Convention Planning Team, and the 2020 MMI Faculty.

Support Rosie
Brent Turner

Brent Turner

Brent Turner

Working in higher education since 2003, Brent has assessed and reimagined programs, services, and campus traditions to pursue equity, cultivate vibrancy, increase satisfaction, and reduce harm. He strives to create conditions where students can discover their passions while putting values into action. He believes student engagement can be a gateway to lifelong learning, friendship, and affinity and that no student should experience barriers to involvement.

Brent serves as the Executive Director of Campus Life at Northwestern University, supervising the areas of Fraternity & Sorority Life, Leadership Development & Community Engagement, and Student Organizations & Activities. During his tenure at Northwestern, he restructured and led a strategic planning process for the team. Brent is also a co-founder of the Northwestern LGBTQ+ Faculty & Staff Affinity Group. He previously worked at DePaul University, Rollins College, Kenyon College, Wisconsin in Scotland, and the University of Wisconsin – River Falls. 

Brent is also a LeaderShape co-lead facilitator and an active member of ACPA where he served on the Tampa and Montréal convention planning teams. Brent earned a bachelor’s degree from The College of William and Mary, a master’s degree from The Ohio State University, and is pursuing a doctorate of education at New England College.

Support Brent