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2019 Alumni Award Recipients Announced

May 16, 2019 | Alumni

The Moritz College of Law Alumni Society presents annual alumni awards in the areas of a distinguished alumna/us, outstanding recent alumna/us, judicial excellence, community service, and public service. This year’s recipients will be honored at a special ceremony during the Ohio State Homecoming Weekend.

Distinguished Alumna Award

Given annually to a Moritz Law graduate for exceptional achievement or outstanding service to the college or community.

Kara J. Trott ’91

Photo of Kara TrottKara J. Trott is the founder and chief executive officer of Quantum Health.  Launched in 1999, Columbus-based Quantum Health now serves more than 100 mid-size to Fortune 500 clients and more than one million people. The organization focuses on employers’ benefits delivery, helping participants better navigate the health care system, producing better health outcomes while reducing unnecessary costs.  Active in Moritz College of Law’s Dean’s Roundtables and on the National Council, she has served on the Ohio State President’s Club Advisory Board. She has been recognized nationally and regionally with numerous awards and distinctions including the Women Presidents’ Organization’s 50 Fastest Growing Women-Owned/Led Companies since 2009 and Smart Business Magazine’s Smart 50 since 2014.  She has also served in leadership and board positions in such diverse organizations as the Tiffany Circle of American Red Cross, Make-A-Wish, the Ohio Wesleyan University Board of Trustees and Executive Committee, and the International Women’s Federation, Ohio chapter.


Outstanding Recent Alumna Award

Granted to an individual who has graduated from the Moritz College of Law within the past 10 years whose accomplishments exemplify outstanding professionalism or loyalty to the college community.

Judge Jaiza N. Page ’10

Photo of Jaiza PageAt the age of 35, Jaiza N. Page is the youngest sitting judge in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas.  Page was Sworn in January 2019. She oversees felonies and high dollar civil cases across the county. From an early age, she’s had an intense interest in public service and social justice. Page graduated from Georgetown University a semester early with a BA degree in government and received a Leadership Scholarship to attend Moritz College of Law in 2007. After graduating from Moritz, she worked in the Columbus City Attorney’s Office as assistant city attorney where she handled environmental issues and problem property owners. In 2015, she was appointed to the Columbus City Council and elected to a full four-year term. Ironically, the last piece of legislation considered her final night as a council member concerned strengthening resident protections against “retaliatory” evictions.


William K. Thomas Distinguished Jurist Award

Granted to an individual who has graduated from the Moritz College of Law within the past 10 years whose accomplishments exemplify outstanding professionalism or loyalty to the college community.

Judge Ann M. Donnelly ’84

Photo of Ann M. Donnelly Federal Judge Ann M. Donnelly was nominated by President Barack Obama in November 2014 and confirmed to the position of the 61st judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York in October 2015.  Upon leaving Moritz, she spent 25 years in positions with the New York County (New York) District Attorney’s Office as assistant district attorney, senior trial counsel, and finally bureau chief of the Family Violence Child Abuse Bureau.  She served as Judge in the New York Court of Claims from 2009-2015.  During this period, she served terms in the Kings County (New York), New York County (New York), and Bronx County (New York) Supreme Courts. She holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan.


Community Service Award

Presented to the Moritz College of Law graduate who has volunteered significant and sustained time and expertise to assist a local, state, national, or international humanitarian organization.

Terence P. Kessler ’75

Photo of Terrence KesslerTerrence P. Kessler is the retired president, CEO, and general counsel of the Sisters of Charity Health System in Cleveland. The health system includes five faith-based hospitals, three grantmaking foundations, two eldercare facilities and six outreach organizations in Ohio and South Carolina. After graduating cum laude from Moritz College of Law, he joined Black, McCuskey, Souers & Arbaugh in Canton, Ohio where his practice focused on business and transactional matters, business finance, and state and federal taxation. Beginning in 1998, he served as a volunteer on the Sisters of Charity Health System board and became chairman of the board in 2006. He resigned as chair of the board to become general counsel of the system in 2012. He was named president and CEO in 2013. He retired in December 2016. He is a former president of the Stark County Bar Association, past president of the United Way of Central Stark County, past president of the Catholic Charities Advisory Board of the Diocese of Youngstown, and member of the board of directors of Canton Central Catholic High School.


George V. Voinovich Public Service Award

Awarded to an alumna/us whose public interest career exemplifies a commitment to promote and provide access to the legal system. Examples of public interest organizations include, but are not limited to, legal aid, legal services, civil liberties, pro bono representation, or volunteer lawyer projects.

Brian E. Sandoval ’89

Photo of Brian SandovalGovernor Brian E. Sandoval has a long and accomplished career in public service. He was elected to the Nevada assembly only five years after graduation from law school. He was subsequently appointed to the Nevada Gaming Commission, where he became the youngest chair in the commission’s history.  He was then elected as attorney general of Nevada, where his service set him apart, resulting in his appointment as a federal district court judge. That appointment was made by a republican president on the recommendation of a democratic senator and approved by a unanimous Senate. He stepped down from the bench to lead his state in a moment of political crisis. In his time as Governor, Nevada has reconstructed its approach to economic development, expanded health care coverage, implemented new, innovative gaming policy and had unprecedented investment in and modernization of Nevada’s public education system. On January 8, 2019, Sandoval joined MGM Resorts International as President of Global Gaming Development under CEO James Murre where he will head MGM’s global expansion plans in Japan and focus on state public policy efforts around sports gaming.