Sweet Briar names 2012 outstanding alumnae

Posted on April 18, 2012 by Janika Carey

Sweet Briar College has announced that Nancy Hudler Keuffel ’62 and Diane Dalton ’67 will receive the 2012 awards for Outstanding Alumna. The awards will be presented during Reunion in May, when Keuffel and Dalton celebrate their 50th and 45th reunions.

Nancy Hudler Keuffel ’62 Nancy Hudler Keuffel ’62

Keuffel graduated with a degree in American studies and is the owner and president of Acorn Strategies, a prospect management firm in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. She shares her talent with Sweet Briar and many other organizations in her community, including the Junior League. She began her service to the College immediately after graduating as the at-large member on the Sweet Briar Alumnae Association board.

Keuffel served on the board in several capacities in the following years, including reunion gifts chairman and president. From 2000 to 2008, she served on the College’s board of directors and now has the distinction of emerita trustee. Keuffel has given her time to numerous other Sweet Briar committees over the years, including the Reunion Gifts Committee and the Boxwood Circle Committee, and has helped to recruit students as an alumnae admissions representative.

Keuffel says she was amazed when she found out the College had picked her as one of two recipients for this year. “There are so many Sweet Briar alumnae who serve the College with their time and talents,” she said.

At Reunion, she’ll get the chance to reconnect with some of them. Aside from catching up on Sweet Briar memories, Keuffel says she’s excited to see some recent additions to the College, especially the Green Village and “smart classrooms.” Both were still in the planning phase when she served on the board of directors.

And then, there’s Sweet Briar’s future.

“My five-year-old granddaughter will be attending Reunion, and it will be interesting to see Sweet Briar through her eyes,” she said.

Keuffel is a member of the Silver Rose Society after giving 25 consecutive years since her graduation, and a member of the Indiana Fletcher Williams Associates, having named Sweet Briar in her will.

Dalton, who is also a member of the Silver Rose Society and the Indiana Fletcher Williams Associates, graduated from Sweet Briar in 1967 with a degree in dramatic literature. She later received a master’s in dramatic arts from Case Western Reserve University. After working for the Milwaukee Repertory Theater for more than 20 years, Dalton recently retired from her position as general manager.

Diane Dalton ’67 Diane Dalton ’67

Like Keuffel, Dalton has volunteered extensively for Sweet Briar and other organizations in her community, including the Junior League. In 1994, she began serving on the Alumnae Association board in several capacities for 14 years, including region VII chair for the Midwest, secretary/treasurer, president and nominating chair. She also was an alumnae-nominated member to the College’s board of directors. Dalton has continued to serve as a director since 2005. She has generously served her class as class secretary for 15 years, represented Sweet Briar at an inauguration in her area, served on the Reunion Gifts Committee, and helped to recruit students as an alumnae admissions representative.

Aside from supporting Sweet Briar by attending many events on campus, the Milwaukee resident has traveled on Sweet Briar tours abroad and supported the Alumnae College effort on campus in 2003.

“I am overwhelmed at the honor of receiving the Outstanding Alumna Award,” Dalton said. “It has been held by wonderful and deserving alumnae, and I am honored to receive it with Nancy Keuffel. I just couldn’t believe it — there are so many outstanding alumnae.”

Like Keuffel, Dalton looks forward to catching up with classmates and other Sweet Briar alumnae at Reunion.

“Being back on campus is always a homecoming and an opportunity to recharge my emotional batteries,” she said.

The Outstanding Alumna Award was established in 1968 by President Anne Gary Pannell as “The Sweet Briar College Alumna Award in Honor of the Class of 1910.” Up to three awards per year are given to alumnae who graduated at least 15 years ago to recognize outstanding service to Sweet Briar in a volunteer capacity. Nominations are invited from any member of the Sweet Briar family: students, alumnae, faculty, administration, staff, and members of the alumnae board and the College board of directors.