Eight alumni were honored with 2010 Distinguished Alumni Awards at a March gala sponsored by the IUP Alumni Association. Biographies (and videos) of the winners with more details than are presented here are on the IUP Alumni website.
CNN photojournalist John Bodnar ’83 has logged thousands of miles covering U.S. Presidents and other chiefs of state. In more than a quarter-century with the network, he has worked with some of the biggest names in journalism and has covered every President since Ronald Reagan. Sports figures, performers at star-studded Kennedy Center galas, and the famous and infamous have all been his subjects. The winner of a Peabody Award for his team’s coverage of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, he is always happy to help IUP students and graduates with answers and advice. He lives in Washington, D.C.
Currently in his fourth full term representing Pennsylvania’s 43rd district, which encompasses part of Allegheny County, State Senator Jay Costa ’79 is Democratic chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, which oversees development of the state budget and expenditure of all state funds. From 2005 to 2008, he served as Senate Democratic Caucus chairman; he is a past chairman of the Senate Democratic Judiciary Committee. He is a trustee of the University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Senator John Heinz Pittsburgh Regional History Center, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Community College of Allegheny County, and 3 Rivers Wet Weather Demonstration Program.
Jeremy Critchfield, a 1993 honors graduate of the IUP Academy of Culinary Arts, is corporate chef and food and beverage vice president at The Greenbrier, an award-winning resort in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va. He has held executive positions at five-star and five-diamond culinary operations in Florida, Montana, Arizona, and Georgia and for seven years—until early 2010—was executive chef and director of food and beverage operations at Western Pennsylvania’s Nemacolin Woodlands Resort. There, he directed more than four hundred associates in seventeen kitchens and twelve restaurants, in addition to overseeing the resort’s meeting planning, retail, and purchasing operations.
In the late seventies, his talent show performance at Pittsburgh’s North Catholic High School propelled Jim Krenn ’83 into the spotlight, and he has never left it. Even as an IUP student, he was doing comedy in clubs, universities, and other venues across the country. A 1987 Pittsburgh gig led to a WDVE job offer, with the result that for more than two decades, the first voice many Pittsburghers hear on weekday mornings is Jim Krenn’s. He and his Morning Show cohosts have raised well over a million dollars for charity—a feat reflected in the city’s declaration of Jim Krenn Day 2009.
A native of the Netherlands, Almar Latour ’94 earned a master’s degree at American University, Washington, D.C., and in 1995 began an internship with the Wall Street Journal Europe in Brussels. Today he is editor-in-chief of the Wall Street Journal in Asia, responsible for the paper’s Asian print edition as well as for developing its regional digital presence. Over the past decade and a half, he also worked for the paper in Washington, Eastern Europe, Stockholm, and London. During his second New York stint, he became managing editor of the Wall Street Journal Online and filled that role three years before his current assignment.
Juan Carlos Salcedo ’77 is managing director at Intensus, a company he helped found in 1996. The international distributor of heavy equipment was listed by Inc. Magazine as one of the 5,000 Fastest-Growing Private Companies in the U.S. With political science and law degrees from San Andres University, La Paz, Bolivia, he has also been an attorney for a Bolivian oil company and currently is senior partner at Jireh Resources Company, Inc. After two decades of involvement with Christian television and radio, he currently produces the nationally known Concert of Prayer, broadcast in Spanish and carried by nine thousand stations worldwide.
Charles Winwood ’69 spent thirty years in the U.S. Customs Service, serving as acting commissioner in 2001, as deputy commissioner, and in many other positions. He was named Federal Executive of the Year in 1994 and was singled out for Presidential and Commissioner’s commendations. After his government retirement, he became a senior vice president at Sandler & Travis Trade Advisory Services, concerned with border security and enforcement. Recipient of a master’s degree from Florida International University, the decorated Vietnam combat veteran has also been involved with nonprofit organizations and has worked closely with IUP’s Criminology Department and John P. Murtha Institute for Homeland Security.
More than two decades after he received a graduate degree in education from IUP, Gerald Zahorchak M’88 was awarded another IUP degree: an honorary Doctor of Laws at December 2009 Commencement. From 2005 until this past May, he served as Pennsylvania’s secretary of Education, a post with responsibility for educating nearly two million schoolchildren and administering an annual budget of more than $9 billion. The recipient of a doctoral degree from Penn State, he moved from teaching in elementary and secondary classrooms to head the Greater Johnstown School District and on July 1, 2010, became superintendent of the Allentown schools, Pennsylvania’s fourth-largest district.
More from the Summer 2010 Issue of IUP Magazine
The 2009–2010 men’s basketball team won more games than any other and competed on nationwide television for the Division II crown.
In six decades, the ROTC program at IUP has produced nearly two thousand U.S. Army second lieutenants, not to mention eight generals.
Legacy Gala, Ruddock Hall, who’s in that photo, and more
Highlights about IUP faculty members, past and present
The latest IUP player to be picked in the NFL draft, plus other newsworthy IUP athletes
IUP Magazine Web Exclusives
June 30, 2010
What distinguishes our Western Pennsylvania dialect?
May 12, 2010
Promoting Native American awareness at IUP.
April 21, 2010
Explore the 270 acres of the Co-op Recreational Park and the IUP Sailing Base at Yellow Creek State Park.