The Center for Leadership Innovation and Mentorship Building (CLIMB) at the College
of Business, Cal State San Marcos awarded the first James R. Meindl Student Leadership
Award to Alyssa Cherry at the Senior Experience Celebration on May 12, 2005. The award
is designed to honor a graduating senior from the College of Business Administration
for demonstrating outstanding leadership/ mentorship in school, at work, and in the
community. The winner must exemplify the Center’s mission: To foster the development
of effective leaders at all levels – individual, team, organization, and community.
The award is in memory of an outstanding professor, James R. Meindl at the State University
of New York at Buffalo who inspired Raj Pillai, Executive Director and Jeff Kohles,
Director of CLIMB.
This year’s recipient, Alyssa Cherry is a very driven, intense, and motivated person who balances the roles of student, wife, employee, and community member. She portrays leadership and mentorship by helping others reach their highest level through transforming their beliefs and actions. Alyssa is active in her church with leading a small group of young married couples to find solutions for overcoming marital issues. She mentors high school girls to make positive decisions, set high standards, and learn from their own mistakes. People that have worked with Alyssa, describe her as a quiet leader who is not afraid to challenge authority to ensure that the highest level of integrity is maintained.
An “exceptional finalist” was also honored at the Senior Experience Celebration. Tanya Packard earned her recognition by exemplifying leadership and mentorship through her past military and work experiences. She served the country as a United States Marine and received several commendations. She has overcome many challenges by maintaining self discipline and being prepared. She balances the roles of student, wife, mother, and community member. Tanya’s leadership style can be described as both directive and supportive. She lets others know they are valued and tries to find out what inspires them. She believes that leadership is an evolving process and is described as having an aura about her that naturally attracts and inspires followers.