Boston College students are inspired and challenged by the University's motto “Ever to Excel.” Our graduates exemplify these words and leave the Heights prepared to make their mark in the world. Meet some talented and accomplished alumni who are leaders in their respective fields.
Kevin Allocca '06
Head of YouTube Culture and Trends
Exactly how many cat videos are there on YouTube? Not as many as you think, says Kevin Allocca—and he should know. He’s head of CATs (culture and trends) at the video-sharing site, where he tracks what’s trending and studies how global culture and online video intersect. The communication and film studies major says the critical thinking and persuasion skills he learned at BC helped him attain and succeed at the job he loves—and also complement his role as YouTube ambassador, representing the brand and sharing insights into viral video phenomena through speaking engagements around the world. He is also the author of a new book entitled “Videocracy: How Youtube is Changing the World…. With Double Rainbows, Singing Foxes, and Other Trends We Can’t Stop Watching.”
Steve Barry '85
Goldman Sachs & Co.
As managing director of Goldman Sachs & Co., and chief investment officer of fundamental equity at Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Steve Barry is responsible for the overall business management of the global Fundamental Equity franchise. He is also the chief investment officer of the Growth Team, responsible for the portfolio management and investment research process of the firm’s United States growth strategies. He also serves as chair of the Boston College Wall Street Council. Barry credits much of his professional success to Boston College, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and economics.
R. Nicholas Burns '78, Hon. '02
Former Undersecretary of State
U.S. State Department
Nicholas Burns says Boston College was a perfect fit for him because of its Jesuit mission. Burns dedicated his life to international affairs, rising through the State Department ranks to become Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs. Among other posts, Burns was the U.S. representative to NATO, Ambassador to Greece, and State Department spokesman. Fluent in French, Arabic and Greek, Burns is a professor at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and member of the State Department’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board. Burns has received honorary doctorates from 12 American universities, including Boston College.
Darcel Clark ‘83
Office of the Bronx District Attorney
Darcel Clark has earned a reputation as one of New York’s most respected jurists and public servants. The Bronx native, who rose from public housing to attend Boston College and Howard University Law School, has had a distinguished legal career as a prosecutor, an associate justice of the New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division, and, most recently, the first woman to be elected Bronx District Attorney. Clark is also a founding member of the Council for Women at Boston College and has served as a mentor for dozens of BC students.
Jack Connors, Jr. '63, Hon. '07
Founder and Chairman Emeritus
Hill Holliday Inc.
The founding partner and chairman emeritus of Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos, Inc.—a Top 20 advertising firm with a client list that includes some of the best-known brands in the world—Jack Connors, Jr., built an industry giant while never forgetting his roots or commitment to his alma mater. One of Boston’s most respected civic and philanthropic leaders, he is a leading advocate for the city’s businesses, hospitals, and universities. Thanks to his efforts, Hill Holliday uses its resources to make a difference through pro bono work for dozens of non-profit and charitable organizations throughout Massachusetts.
Peter B. Dervan '67, Hon. '97
California Institute of Technology
“I come to work excited every day,” says Peter Dervan. The pioneering researcher—winner of the National Medal of Science, the nation’s highest award for science achievement—traces the roots of his passion to a BC lab where he “had the good fortune” to be an undergraduate working in synthetic organic chemistry, “one of the most powerful tools in modern science.” The experience awakened a zest for research that would fuel a distinguished career and the creation of a new field: bioorganic chemistry, in which he brings the art of synthesis, physical chemistry, and biology to bear on the study of DNA.
Carolyn Dever '88
After four years serving in the role of Provost, Carolyn Dever returned to teaching and research as an English professor at Dartmouth College. A gender studies scholar and expert on 19th-century British literature, she said she chose academia "to explore new ideas, ask difficult questions, and advance learning." An English major at the Heights, she has both authored and edited books, and has previously served as a dean at Vanderbilt University. Her current research is focused on on art and intimacy in Victorian Britain.
Jared Dudley '07
Brooklyn Nets (NBA)
The California native credits BC with helping him achieve his dream of playing in the NBA. Lightly recruited out of high school, Jared Dudley became an Eagle and never looked back. He capped his college career by earning Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year honors in 2007 and was a first-round draft pick. The NBA veteran hosts the Camp of Opportunity each summer for high school players. During a return to campus a few years ago, he said, “Always good to be back at Boston College! I owe everything to this school.”
Doug Flutie '85
Sports broadcaster, autism awareness advocate
A 1984 Heisman Trophy winner, veteran professional football player and current college football television analyst, Doug Flutie credits his BC education as the foundation for his success. He led the Eagles to a Top 5 ranking in his senior year, capping off the season with the famous “Hail Mary” touchdown pass in Miami. The most prolific offensive player in major college football history went on to play 21 professional seasons. He and his wife Laurie founded the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism and have raised more than $16 million to improve the lives of people and families living with autism.
Pete Frates '07
ALS research advocate
A former BC baseball captain greatly admired by teammates and opponents, Pete Frates accepted his diagnosis of ALS with grace and determination and became the inspiration for the Ice Bucket Challenge, which has raised more than $200 million for ALS research. Thanks to his efforts, and the generosity of people worldwide, the ALS Association says it hopes to announce a major breakthrough in treatment for the disease that affects roughly 30,000 Americans each year. “My new team is the ALS community and I have felt since Day 1 that I owe them my best effort to try to raise awareness/funds to end this disease,” said Frates. For his heroic efforts, he was named Inspiration of the Year by Sports Illustrated in 2015.
Ken Hackett '68, Hon. '06
Former U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican
Ken Hackett says his Jesuit education prepared him to help build a better world, which is what the 1968 Boston College graduate has been doing for most of his life. His career began with the Peace Corps, followed by 40 years with Catholic Relief Services, where he traveled to every continent and helped with every human disaster imaginable. The management major was president of CRS from 1993-2011, overseeing 5,000 employees in more than 100 countries. Appointed by President Barack Obama, Hackett served as U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican from 2013 to 2017.
Jennie Chin Hansen '70, Hon. '08
A graduate of the Connell School of Nursing, Jennie Chin Hansen has always focused on the needs of older people, from her beginnings as a public health nurse in Idaho to her advocacy on behalf of the more than 35 million Americans 50 or older as president of AARP. Hansen was the first Asian American, the first nurse and the first baby-boomer to lead AARP. Hansen operates under the belief that problems can be solved with smart solutions, not necessarily expensive solutions—a lesson she said she learned in a Connell School course that required students to prepare a nutritious meal on a budget.
Chuck Hogan '89
Writer Chuck Hogan penned his first novel as a BC student. He has since authored several acclaimed books and captivated international audiences on paper and screen. His Boston-based best-seller Prince of Thieves was adapted into “The Town,” a major motion picture starring and directed by Ben Affleck. A-list director Guillermo del Toro chose Hogan to co-author a vampire trilogy adapted for FX as “The Strain.” He also wrote the screenplay for the 2016 film "13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi." At a campus appearance, Hogan, who majored in English and was honored with a BC Arts Council alumni award for distinguished achievement, told students, “My two key things are following my passion and working with the best people I can.”
Paloma Izquierdo-Hernandez '76, Hon. '14
President and CEO
Urban Health Plan Inc.
Paloma Izquierdo-Hernandez dedicates her life to reducing health disparities for disadvantaged individuals in the South Bronx and Queens, NY, where she has made invaluable contributions to health care and community life. Her inspired leadership transformed Urban Health Plan from a single site into a network that cares for more than 60,000 individuals, and is recognized among the nation’s top 20 community health centers. Following in the footsteps of her father—a pioneering doctor—and building on the tenets of her Jesuit education, she is passionately committed to a vision of care where no person lacks access to essential health services.
Clinton Kelly '91
Television personality, author, designer
Clinton Kelly chose BC because he fell in love with the campus “vibe.” He sampled different fields at the Heights, exploring psychology, economics and environmental geoscience before discovering a passion for journalism. Though best known for his television roles, he launched his career atMarie Claire magazine, still writes for a number of publications, and is the author of several books. The co-host of ABC’s “The Chew” and former co-star of TLC’s “What Not to Wear” has returned to campus several times to inspire students to find their own paths—and, of course, to dress for success.
John F. Kerry, Law '76, Hon. '14
Former U.S. Secretary of State
Service to his country has defined the life of Secretary of State John Kerry. "That spirit of service is part of the fabric of this school, just as it is part of the fabric of our nation," he said in his commencement address to the Class of 2014. This U.S. Navy and Vietnam War veteran served Massachusetts as a prosecutor, lieutenant governor and as U.S. Senator for 28 years. He then served as Secretary of State from 2013 to 2017. His 2018 memoir, Every Day is Extra, was a New York Times bestseller.
Luke Kuechly '15
Carolina Panthers (NFL)
Before becoming a star in the NFL, Luke Kuechly was a defensive force at Boston College, setting school and ACC records with 532 tackles on his way to becoming a three-time All-American. The marketing major was the only player to lead the NCAA in tackles more than one season. A 2012 first-round pick of the Carolina Panthers, Kuechly has led the NFL in tackles twice, earning him Rookie and Defensive Player of the Year honors along with two Pro Bowl appearances. Kuechly is a spokesman for Project Life, which registers college students for bone marrow donation.
Peter Lynch '65, Hon. '95
Fidelity Management & Research Company
“Boston College gave me the confidence to compete with anyone,” Peter Lynch said of his undergraduate experience. Lynch transformed the world of investing as the portfolio manager of the Magellan Fund at Fidelity Investments, where he now serves as vice chairman. As a philanthropist, Lynch focuses on transforming lives. A founder and officer of The Lynch Foundation, his philanthropic focus has been on education, Catholic organizations, cultural initiatives and healthcare. At BC, the Lynch family has provided crucial support to signature initiatives of the Lynch School of Education and the Carroll School of Management.
Julianne Malveaux '74, MA '76
Former President, Bennett College
Julianne Malveaux has long been recognized for her progressive and insightful observations through all forms of media. She is a labor economist, noted author, and respected television commentator. Malveaux has been described as “the most iconoclastic public intellectual in the country.” Her contributions to the public dialogue on issues such as race, culture, gender, and their economic impacts are shaping public opinion in 21st century America. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in economics from Boston College.
Ed Markey '68, Law '72
U.S. Senator Ed Markey (D-Mass) credits his Jesuit education at Boston College with preparing him for a successful career in public service. The former Massachusetts congressman spent 37 years in the U.S. House of Representatives before becoming senator in 2014. During his political career he has earned a reputation as a strong proponent of education, clean energy, telecommunications deregulation and job creation. Markey proudly upholds the legacy of former House Speaker Thomas P. “Tip” O’Neill ’36, who believed that politics was the noblest means of helping those in need.
James Martin, S.J. M.Div. '98, Th.M. '99
Author and media commentator
James Martin, S.J.—a media giant and one of the most recognizable Jesuits in America—has appeared on CNN, NPR, and Comedy Central’s "The Colbert Report” (as the “Official Chaplain to the Colbert Nation"). Before he wrote The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything, a practical spiritual guidebook drawn from the teachings of Society of Jesus founder St. Ignatius of Loyola, Fr. Martin studied theology at the precursor to BC’s School of Theology and Ministry. The author of several best-selling and award-winning books—popular with both Catholic and secular audiences—he also serves as editor at large of the national Catholic magazine America and as a consultor to the Vatican's Dicastery for Communications.
Ernest Moniz '66, Hon. '16
Former U.S. Secretary of Energy
Considered one of the world’s foremost experts in his field, Ernest Moniz received the foundation of his knowledge at Boston College, graduating at the top of his class with a physics degree. A first-generation college graduate, Moniz was a Scholar of the College who considered Alumni Stadium his favorite place on campus. He served as President Obama’s Secretary of Energy from 2013 to 2017 and was a key negotiator of the 2015 historic nuclear agreement with Iran. Previously, Moniz had been on the MIT faculty since 1973 and served as undersecretary for the Energy Department during the Clinton Administration.
Joy Haywood Moore '81, Hon. '10
Interim vice president for Student Affairs
“Every encounter I had with a Jesuit was one of care, concern, inspiration and encouragement… that was always part of my BC experience,” Joy Moore has said of her undergraduate years. An advocate for education, particularly for young girls and women, Moore led schools in Massachusetts and California, and from 2006 to 2010 was a senior leader of The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls, a tuition-free school in South Africa. Moore returned to BC in 2011, joining University Advancement, where she has led initiatives including “150 on the Road,” an alumni service campaign that prepared more than 450,000 meals for families in Africa.
Denise Morrison '75
Former President and CEO
Campbell Soup Company
As a student at Boston College studying economics and psychology, Denise Morrison always knew she wanted to run a company someday. She began her career at Procter & Gamble and then spent decades in the food business working in senior positions at Kraft Foods, Nabisco, Nestle and Pepsi-Cola until becoming president and CEO of Campbell Soup Company, a global enterprise with a portfolio that extends beyond soup to such brands as Pepperidge Farm, V8, Swanson, Prego and Pace, among many others. During her tenure as CEO, she was regularly named among the Fortune and Forbes Most Powerful Women.
Patricia Noonan '07
Actor, concert performer
With a passion for telling great stories, acclaimed actor, singer and writer Patricia Noonan has made a name for herself by breathing new life into the leading ladies of classic shows and working with composers and writers to bring original works to stage and screen. In off-Broadway performances at home in New York City, and in theaters from the east to west coasts, Noonan has shone onstage as an actress and concert performer, including at the renowned Kennedy Center. At BC, she not only performed the leads in many shows in Robsham Theater, but also debuted her original plays here on campus.
Elizabeth O’Day '06
CEO and Founder
Olaris Therapeutics, Inc.
Entrepreneur Elizabeth O’Day is a firm believer that science can change lives. As a biochemistry major at Boston College, O’Day started Women in Science & Technology, which has provided high-school and college-aged women the opportunity to learn about careers in science. In addition to earning her PhD from Harvard University, O’Day founded Lizzard Fashion, which uses fashion to promote science. She helped launch Project Spark, a technology-recycling program that funds education initiatives in Latin America, and in 2014 founded Olaris Therapeutics, which develops precision medicines for the most devastating diseases.
Chris O’Donnell '92, Hon. '17
Actor Chris O’Donnell has received critical acclaim in a career that has included film, stage and screen. The star of the Hollywood film “Scent of a Woman,” for which he earned a Golden Globe Award nomination, as well as the Broadway hit rendition of Arthur Miller's “The Man Who Had All the Luck,” and the popular television series “NCIS: Los Angeles,” O’Donnell has achieved stardom while maintaining a reputation as of one of the most respected individuals in the entertainment business. The father of five credits much of his success to the education he received at Boston College, and to the values instilled in him by his parents and BC’s Jesuits.
Steve Pemberton '89, Hon. '15
Chief Human Resources Officer
Pioneering corporate executive Steve Pemberton says much of his personal and professional life is anchored in his Boston College experiences. Now Chief Human Resources Officer at Globoforce, Pemberton wrote the best-selling memoir A Chance in the World (also the name of his non-profit), which chronicles his story of rising from a physically abusive foster home environment to a career as a successful corporate officer and motivational speaker who inspires others to overcome tragedy and become more than their circumstance. A film adaptation of his memoir was released in 2017. He has been named among the top diversity officers (Fortunemagazine) and most influential African-Americans in corporate America (Savoy magazine).
Connie Anne Phillips '87
Publisher, Chief Revenue Officer
Glamour at Condé Nast
InStyle, Vogue and Glamour are just three of the high-profile magazines associated with publisher and chief revenue officer Connie Anne Phillips. An English major with a theology minor, Phillips, who describes her role as a “dream job,” is recognized as one of the best leaders in the industry. Thanks to her efforts, Glamour now reaches more people than any other Condé Nast title except Wired. The magazine mogul worked earlier in her career at fashion powerhouse Vogue—and counts the training she received at Boston College as a source of her success.
Amy Poehler '93
Actor, producer, author
Whether she’s delivering the perfect one-liner, reinventing herself as a new media entrepreneur or creating ways to inspire young girls to sharpen their smarts, Amy Poehler’s high-performance career “all goes back to improv," she says. The star of NBC’s “SNL” and “Parks and Recreation,” the voice of Joy in Pixar’s “Inside Out,” and a high-profile producer, she honed her impromptu chops during her time with the nation’s oldest collegiate improv comedy troupe, BC’s “My Mother’s Fleabag.” She returned to her roots for an encore performance with the group when she accepted a BC Arts Council alumni award for distinguished achievement. In 2015, she received a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Karyn Polito '88
Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor
In 2015, Karyn Polito was sworn in as the Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. After her graduation from the Carroll School of Management, Polito launched a career in public service, as a member of the Board of Selectmen for her hometown of Shrewsbury, Mass. She went on to serve as a State Representative for the 11th Worcester District in the Massachusetts House of Representatives for five terms. She is known for her advocacy on behalf of children and has worked to advance safety through legislation related to drunk drivers, defibrillators and young drivers.
Luke Russert '08
Former NBC News correspondent
Luke Russert reported for NBC News from Capitol Hill, where he covered the House of Representatives for "NBC Nightly News," "Today," MSNBC and NBCNews.com. The son of the late, legendary NBC newsman Tim Russert and the writer Maureen Orth, Russert bridged a gap between the traditional media of his parents' generation and the 24/7 electronic news environment of today. The history and communication major is a recipient of the Marlin Fitzwater Award for Leadership in Public Communications for his contributions to public discourse in the spirit of a healthy democracy, Russert was also nominated for an Emmy Award in 2013.
Matt Ryan '08
Atlanta Falcons (NFL)
While a student-athlete at Boston College, Atlanta Falcons Quarterback Matt Ryan earned the nickname “Matty Ice” for his remarkable coolness under pressure. The former ACC Player of the Year and First-team All-American, was selected in the first round (3rd overall) in the 2008 NFL draft before leading the Falcons to several postseason appearances, earning himself Pro Bowl honors along the way. At BC, Ryan distinguished himself as a standout student and campus leader. He has remained ever-loyal to his alma mater, proudly touting the benefits of his BC education both on and off the field.
Navyn A. Salem '94, Hon. '12
Founder and CEO
A visit to her father’s native Tanzania first brought Navyn Salem face to face with the urgent problem of malnutrition and the horror of children dying from hunger. Moved by her experience, the mother of four combined her compassion, business skills and social entrepreneurship—traits she attributes to her Boston College education—to found Edesia, a non-profit manufacturer of food products that treat and prevent malnutrition in children across the globe. Since it opened in 2010, the Edesia factory has produced enough ready-to-use foods, which have a life-changing imparct, to reach 9 million children in over 50 countries.
Molly Schaus '11
Molly Schaus is a Team USA ice hockey goaltender, and a two-time silver medalist at the Winter Olympics (2014, 2010). As a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team, she played in five International Ice Hockey Federation Women’s World Championships. Schaus finished her four-year career as Boston College’s all-time leader with 80 wins, a 1.81 goals-against-average and 3,428 saves in 134 games. She was a two-time Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award top-10 finalist (2009, 2011) and a two-time All-American. The Lynch School of Education alumna was selected as an Athlete Role Model for the 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games.
Phil Schiller '82
Senior Vice President, Worldwide Marketing
Phil Schiller applied his biology degree to launch a successful career with Apple, where he has worked for nearly 30 years. The leader of Apple's global marketing efforts, Schiller helped the company return to its role as a technology innovator, helping deliver breakthroughs such as the iMac, MacBook, iPod, iPhone, iTunes, and iPad and launching the App Store. Schiller’s love of Eagle hockey led to the Schiller Family Head Hockey Coach endowment. He meets twice a year with BC students who embark on the Carroll School of Management’s Tech Trek to Silicon Valley.
Laura Sen '78
Former Non-Executive Chairman
BJ’s Wholesale Club
As former president and CEO, Laura Sen oversaw big box giant BJ’s Wholesale Club—with more than 200 locations in 15 U.S. states, some 25,000 employees and nine million members. Sen, who majored in romance languages but had no definite ideas about a future career, is a retail veteran regarded as a business "game changer" who has been on the Fortune 500 CEOs list and named among the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business by the magazine. She later served as non-executive chairman of BJ’s, helping to set the company’s strategic direction. Honored for her philanthropy, Sen has said: “I’ve always found that I get way more back than I ever give.”
Alex Truesdell, M.Ed. ‘82
Founder and Executive Director
Adaptive Design Association, Inc.
Alex Truesdell embodies the Lynch School of Education’s commitment to bettering the lives of children and families. This social entrepreneur has dedicated her career to special-needs children, from launching the Assistive Device Center at the Perkins School for the Blind to founding The Adaptive Design Association, which creates low-tech, affordable tools and furniture that help children with disabilities join activities in their homes, schools, and communities. Her visionary achievements in "disrupting traditional approaches to assistive technologies" were honored by a MacArthur Foundation “Genius Grant” in 2015.
Stephanie Valencia '04
Former Director of Strategic Outreach and Partnerships
A recipient of BC’s Archbishop Oscar A. Romero Scholarship in 2003, Stephanie Valencia’s interest in public policy led her to the nation’s capital. She has worked for three lawmakers, and served in the White House Office of Public Engagement, where she was Special Assistant to the President and Principal Deputy Director, focusing on a range of issues including housing, immigration, and outreach to the Hispanic community. In 2013, she joined the staff of the U.S. Secretary of Commerce, where she led public engagement and strategic planning initiatives. At Google’s Washington, D.C. policy office, she managed the company's strategic outreach and partnerships with third party advocacy groups and think tanks.
Lesley Visser '75 Hon. '07
Hall of Fame Sportscaster
Boston Globe, CBS, ABC, and HBO
The most highly acclaimed female sportscaster of all time, Lesley Visser was voted to six professional halls of fame. A pioneer in the industry, she was the first woman enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the first female sportscaster to carry the Olympic torch, the only woman to present the Lombardi Trophy after the Super Bowl, and the first woman to appear on network broadcasts of the Final Four, the NBA Finals, and the World Series. In her four-decade career, which began by writing for The Heights, she's covered everything from the Olympics to Wimbledon to the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Alberto Vasallo III '89
President and CEO
Caribe Communications, El Mundo newspaper
As the leader of New England’s largest Latino newspaper and one of the longest-running Latino television personalities and producers in Boston, Alberto Vasallo III is among the region's most respected and influential figures. The former host of “La Hora Del Café,” one of Spanish radio’s most popular drive-time shows, and producer and former host of “Revista Hispana” and “Urban Update” for NBC TV’s Boston affiliate, Vasallo also partnered with the Boston Red Sox in creating the Latino Youth Recognition days at Fenway Park, which have honored top Latino academic achievers for nearly three decades.
Marty Walsh '10
City of Boston
“Follow your dream – it is never too late to follow your dream,” Boston Mayor Marty Walsh told a Woods College of Advancing Studies audience just a few months after he was sworn in as Boston’s 54th mayor in a Conte Forum ceremony. Walsh graduated from the Woods College at age 44, attending evening classes after spending his days representing the 13th Suffolk District in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. During his 16 years representing his Dorchester neighborhood, Walsh earned a reputation as a fierce advocate for working people and urban neighborhoods. Today, his Boston College diploma hangs in his office in Boston’s City Hall.
Setti Warren '93
Former Mayor and Massachusetts Gubernatorial Candidate
City of Newton
The former mayor of Massachusetts’ 11th largest city got started early in public service, as four-time president of his high school class, then as the second African-American to be elected president of the Undergraduate Government of Boston College. Setti Warren says BC provided him with “a great foundation” for a career that has included posts in the Clinton White House and the staff of U.S. Senator John F. Kerry, as well as a stint as New England FEMA director. A Navy veteran with service in Iraq, Warren earned praise for taking a comprehensive approach to meeting Newton’s capital and infrastructure needs. He now serves as the Executive Director of the Harvard Kennedy School's Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy.
Erik Weihenmayer '91, Hon. '03
Mountain climber, author, motivational speaker
Professional outdoor adventurer Erik Weihenmayer—blind since age 13—is the first sightless climber to scale Mount Everest—a feat chronicled in a 2001 Time cover story that described him as an international symbol of courage. He recounted that feat in a memoir, one of his many books, and is a popular motivational speaker worldwide. In his triumph over some of the world’s most formidable mountains, he completed the vaunted Seven Summits, ascending the highest points on every continent. To help people with challenges, Weihenmayer co-founded “No Barriers,” and embodied its mission in 2014 with a 277-mile kayak journey down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon.
Michael D. White '74
Former President, Chairman and CEO
Michael D. White served as president, chairman and CEO of DirecTV, one of the world’s leading providers of digital television entertainment services, reaching more than 19 million customers in the United States and nearly 10 million customers in Latin America. Prior to joining DirecTV, White had a long career at Pepsi, where he served in several senior positions, including CEO of PepsiCo International, vice chairman of PepsiCo, and president and CEO of Frito-Lay’s Europe, Africa and Middle East division. He is a proud advocate of his Boston College education, crediting the Jesuits with teaching him that "excellence is a journey, not a destination."
Tracey Wigfield '05
Television writer, producer, actor
Tracey Wigfield, who showcased her comedic skills on the stage at BC’s Robsham Theater as a theater and English double major, is now an award-winning writer, producer and actor in television. Wigfield was a writer for the NBC hit comedy “30 Rock,” sharing an Emmy with the show’s star, Tina Fey, for writing the series’ finale. She wrote and was co-executive producer for “The Mindy Project,” where she added acting to her repertoire, appearing in several episodes of the comedy. Most recently, she created the NBC comedy series "Great News."
Jerry York '67
Boston College Men’s Hockey | Head Coach
Jerry York, The Schiller Family Men’s Hockey Head Coach, has led the team since 1994, but his connection to BC goes back to his student days where he earned All-American honors as a forward in 1967. York is the winningest active coach in NCAA hockey, and leads the all-time list with more than 1,000 wins as of the end of the 2017–18 season. He has won the NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey national championship five times as a coach, four of which were at BC. Beloved by his players past and present, he serves as a role model for NCAA coaches of all sports.
Jeremy Zipple, S.J. '00, Th.M., M.Div. '14
Jeremy Zipple is a Jesuit priest and award-winning documentary filmmaker whose films have been broadcast on PBS, National Geographic Television, Discovery and TLC. He is executive editor of America Films, part of the U.S. Jesuits’ official multimedia platform. From 2007-2012, as a staff producer at National Geographic, he directed, wrote and produced documentaries on a broad range of topics, from biblical archeology in the Near East to ancient Mayan civilization in the Yucatan. An encounter with the late Boston College Vice President William Neenan, S.J., led to Fr. Zipple’s decision to enroll in Boston College as a Presidential Scholar, and later, to enter the Society of Jesus.
Grace Simmons Zuncic '05
Senior Vice President of People
As student body president, Rhodes Scholar nominee, and student representative of Boston College’s Church in the 21st Century initiative, it is a small wonder that Grace Simmons Zuncic won the 2005 Edward H. Finnegan, SJ, Award as the senior who best exemplified BC’s motto “Ever to Excel.” She has stayed true to those words, working as a management consultant to the White House and Department of Homeland Security, then as an investment advisor for Goldman Sachs. Today, the BC Philosophy and Political Science major and Harvard Business School grad serves as senior vice president at Chobani, one of the top-selling yogurts in the US.