Thursday, June 23, 2011

Five alums to be honored at SMU’s Homecoming June 24-26

Each year during summer Homecoming festivities, Saint Mary’s honors outstanding alumni.

This weekend, the Distinguished Alum Award recipient will be Dr. Don Truhlar of Stillwater, Minn.; Lasallian Service Awards will go to Mary Lou (Black) Scheid of Bloomington, Minn., and James and Molly (Crosby) Cave of St. Paul. Additionally, Rob Figliulo of Burr Ridge, Ill., will receive the Alumni Appreciation Award. All five will be honored during a reception Saturday, June 25.

Approximately 350 alumni, family and friends will return to their alma mater for Saint Mary’s Homecoming festivities, which begin Friday, June 24, and run throughout the weekend. In addition to the alumni awards ceremony, highlights include a golf outing, the Gilmore Gallop 5K, a 50+ anniversary social, and the alumni picnic.

2011 Homecoming Honorees:

Dr. Don Truhlar ’65
Distinguished Alum Stillwater, Minn.
Don Truhlar ’65 switched his major at Saint Mary’s from physics to chemistry because, he said, “The most exciting science on campus” was in carbene research. His research took many turns, but 37 years later, he returned to his SMU roots and wrote two journal articles on carbene chemistry. All together, he has authored more than 900 journal articles, more than 80 book chapters and has edited or co-edited 13 books. Don received a Ph.D. from Caltech in 1970, and he has been on the faculty of the University of Minnesota since 1969 where he is currently Regents Professor of Chemistry, Chemical Physics Nanoparticle Science and Engineering and Scientific Computation. Don also serves as an associate editor for the Journal of the American Chemical Society and as editor of Computer Physics Communications. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences of and the International Academy of Quantum Molecular Sciences and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society, the American Chemical Society, the Royal Society of Chemistry, and the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute. He has received numerous national and international awards for his research.

Rob Figliulo ’76
Alumni Appreciation Burr Ridge, Ill.
Rob Figliulo ’76 is a lifelong supporter of Saint Mary’s University. He is a former member and chairman of the SMU Board of Trustees and is currently serving as chair of the Kabara Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies Advisory Board. He has also served as an active parent while several of his children attended Saint Mary’s. Rob has demonstrated his philanthropy and commitment to the university. He is a charismatic supporter of SMU who has been generous with his time, talent and financial contributions.

Mary Lou (Black ’76) Scheid
Lasallian Service Bloomington, Minn.
It has been the lifelong goal of Mary Lou (Black ’76) Scheid and her husband Stephen Scheid ’76 to volunteer in a Third World country after they retired. Sadly, because of Stephen’s sudden and untimely death, they were unable to carry out their dream together. Undaunted, Mary Lou and her 11-year-old son studied Spanish and moved to Antigua, Guatemala. For three years, Mary Lou served as a surgical nurse and Spanish interpreter. She worked with teams of doctors from the United States, Europe and Canada on a variety of surgeries including orthopedic, cleft lip and palate, hysterectomies and cataract. Mary Lou returned to the United States a few years ago but continues to make several trips each year back to Guatemala with medical teams from the Twin Cities.

James 91 & Molly (Crosby ’91) Cave
Lasallian Service St. Paul, Minn.
Together, James ’91 and Molly (Crosby ’91) Cave are living examples of Lasallian service. Molly, a social worker, community volunteer and advocate for women, uses love and compassion to advocate and empower people in the Twin Cities. Molly was also instrumental in the St. Paul Paint the Pavement program, which promotes community building and “peacemaking” through creating neighborhood art. James is a Catholic schoolteacher and a coach who is a leader and national speaker on social justice, genocide, and the Rwandan genocide. James leads educational trips for high school students to Rwanda annually. Recently the Caves invited a young man from Rwanda into their home so he could attend junior and high school in the United States. The Caves practice what they preach, and live the lives that most others only talk about.

Faculty and staff are invited to — and encouraged to attend — weekend activities. To view a complete schedule of events, go to