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Bridgewater Alumni Association Award Winners 2022

2022 Winner Bios

Dr. Catherine Comeau Award for Professional Achievement

Laney M. Clement-Holbrook ’75, G’81, H’22

headshot photo of Elaine Clement-Holbrook with short wavy brown hair wearing a v-neck sleeveless off-white top

As a four-sport athlete at Dedham High School, the next logical step for Laney was to attend Bridgewater State College where she aspired to become a teacher and a coach.

She was a member of both the basketball and softball teams and graduated Cum Laude with a B.S in Health and Physical Education in 1975 and earned a Master’s Degree in Health Education in 1981.

Laney began her teaching and coaching career at Oliver Ames High School, where she taught Physical Education, Health and Biology and was the Head Basketball Coach since 1976. She is currently teaching Anatomy and Physiology on a part time basis.

Over the course of Laney’s career, she has won 19 Hockomock League Championships, and 3 State Championships. She broke the record for most wins in the history of the State of Massachusetts in 2020 and finished her career with 733 victories, all at Oliver Ames High School.

Laney has been involved with a number of professional organizations including the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association, as well as the Massachusetts Basketball Coaching Association of which she became the first female President and served Massachusetts at the position in 1992.

Laney was chosen to Coach the McDonald’s All-American Game in 2017 in Chicago. She has been inducted into Northeast New Agenda Hall of Fame, the Dedham High School Athletic Hall of Fame, the Bridgewater State College Athletic Hall of Fame, the New England Basketball Hall of Fame, and the Massachusetts Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.

Laney along with her college roommate and teammate Barbara Stevens, partnered together as the 2022 BSU Commencement speakers where they were awarded an Honorary Doctorate Degree in Public Education.

Paul Gaines Sr. Achievement Award

Dr. Emily Field and Dr. Jamie Huff

Dr. Jamie Huff and Dr. Emily Field standing in front of a tree on campus

Drs. Emily Donaldson Field and Jamie Huff are Associate Professors at Bridgewater State University. Over the course of the past five years, they have researched people of African American and Indigenous heritage who lived, died, and are buried here in Bridgewater. They have compiled a database of over four hundred people of color who lived in Bridgewater during the 1700s and early 1800s and have brought to light more detailed stories about a few of these individuals, including Cuff Ashport and Toby Talbot, both of whom were once enslaved in Bridgewater, both of whom actively achieved their freedom, and both of whom are buried in First Cemetery in the midst of the campus. Field and Huff’s research continues, with the goal of helping the town and the university to recognize, publicly and visibly, our multiracial history and the crucial role of African Americans and the Massachusetts and Wampanoag people within that history.

Dr. Field is Associate Professor of English as well as the founder and Coordinator of the African American Studies Program at Bridgewater State, which has been active since 2018. She teaches courses on African American literature, American literature, and African American Studies. In addition to the project above, her research focuses on 19th-century African American and multiethnic literature, particularly in the ways it engages discourses of race and nation. She lives in her home-city of Cambridge with her husband, son, and a noisy parrot.

Dr. Huff is Associate Professor of Criminal Justice and is also affiliated with the African American Studies Program at Bridgewater State. She is a sociolegal historian who studies the interactions between laws and society in the 19th and late 18th centuries. Her research has focused on the legal experiences of members of marginalized social groups with particular attention to gender and race. She teaches courses on law, courts, and sociolegal studies as well as courses in African American Studies. Dr. Huff is a South Carolinian by birth, but she has lived in New England since 2008. She currently lives in Warren, Rhode Island, with her husband and two very large cats.


Martha D. Jones Award

Dr. Christopher A. Frazer

headshot photo of Chris Frazer with short light brown hair wearing a black collared jacket over a white button down shirt and a light blue tie with print

Dr. Chris Frazer has been a leader in the COVID 19 response at BSU since the beginning of the pandemic.

He has collaborated with the President and Cabinet, our campus police, outside agencies such as the CDC and the Department of Public Health and countless others to ensure the health and safety of our students and the entire campus community.

During this time, the Wellness Center worked tirelessly to establish testing, contact tracking and reporting protocols to minimize the negative effects on our students. As a result, the percentage of positive cases remained well under average.

He was instrumental in sharing campus pandemic updates and establishing a regional COVID 19 vaccination clinic that served the entire Greater Bridgewater area. This work consumed his time and energy for over two years, while also working to continue the important physical and mental health work that is delivered through the BSU Wellness Center.

The work is not done. He continues to provide guidance and direction with the intention of keeping the BSU community safe with a renewed focus on mental health and our safe return from the pandemic.


Sarah A. Lewis Distinguished Afro-American Alumni Associated Award

Michael P. Henry ‘92

headshot photo of Michael Henry with a black and gray mustache and beard wearing glasses and a dark gray suit with a light blue button down shirt and gold tie

Michael has served on the Afro-American Alumni Council Board since 1997. He has held numerous positions within the Afro-Am Alumni Association: President, Treasurer, Membership Officer, and a representative to the BAA Board of Directors. He has facilitated recruiting alumni to come back on campus with events and worked with current undergraduate students by letting them know that Afro-Am Alumni is here to support them.

During his tenure as an Executive Board member, he worked to help students establish La Sociedad Latina as well as the Cape Verdean Student Association. He is also a founding alumni member of Men Integrated in Brotherhood (MIB).

He helped develop and endow the Paul Gaines, Henry Santos, Jerrol Toledo, and Arthur Cox ‘98 Scholarships. Michael co-founded the AfroAmerican Alumni Mentoring Program. Michael also served on the Hall of Black Achievement (HOBA) commission as a commissioner, Vice-Chair & then Chairperson.

Outside of BSU, he volunteered at the George Elementary School in Brockton, where he was elected as their first male and first person of color PTA President. He also served on the Massachusetts PTA Executive Board, Boys & Girls Clubs of Middlesex County Board of Directors, and the Young Professionals Network of Eastern Massachusetts Executive Board.

He currently works as an agent at New York Life. He and his wife Eileen reside in the Brockton and have two children Tyler and Dominique.


Dr. Adrian Rondileau Award

Bruce P. Morell ‘75

headshot photo of Bruce Morell with short gray hair and mustache wearing a navy blue suit with white button-down shirt and navy blue tie

Prior to his retirement in 2018, Bruce served as the Executive Director of PACE (People Acting in Community Endeavors, Inc.), a community action nonprofit organization providing human services to Greater New Bedford area for 32 years. PACE operates many programs including a Head Start Pre-School Program, financial assistance for low-income people to help pay energy costs, a Health Care Access Program. PACE also promotes community health initiatives, offers financial assistance and counseling to prevent evictions and manages the State childcare voucher payment system in 45 cities and towns.

Under his leadership PACE created a Food Bank and the PACE Community Housing Corporation that builds, rehabilitates, and manages affordable housing and first-time home ownership opportunities in New Bedford. In cooperation from the Internal Revenue Service PACE developed a free tax return preparation service for working families and individuals in addition to developing a YouthBuild New Bedford Program that provides GED instruction, leadership development, living stipends and construction training to at risk high school dropouts.

He was a founding member to the Greater New Bedford Human Services Provider Group as well as the Greater New Bedford Homeless Providers Network and held many prominent positions on area and boards. Bruce also coached boy’s and girls’ swimming and diving at New Bedford High School.

Bruce lives in Fall River Massachusetts with his wife Suzanne (‘76). They have two children.


Nicholas P. Tillinghast Award

Hazel L. Varella ’54, G’56

headshot of Hazel Varella with short curly brown hair wearing glasses and a white top with blue plaid collar

Hazel has taught at Curry College, Bridgewater State College, Stonehill College as well as in the towns of Easton and East Bridgewater.

Amongst her numerous activities and achievements are as a contributor to Siena College and C-SPAN; President of Delta Kappa Gamma, College Board presenter; Mentor to AP teachers in the Boston School System, Respondent to the NSCC Task Force for the Curriculum Standards, Woodrow Wilson Institute in World History for Teachers, Kennedy Library Project to Improve the Teaching of American Politics, National Endowment for the Humanities Independent Study Scholar, Easton School System’s Curriculum Coordinating Council, and Chair of the Philosophy Committee at Oliver Ames High School. In fact, the Oliver Ames High School Office has been renamed in her honor.

She has served as a Trustee at the North Easton Savings Bank, as well as the Ames Free Library/Easton Public Library, and the Village Cemetery. She has authored “Growing Up At Sheep Pasture” and co-authored “A History of Easton 1886-1975” and has prepared a booklet about Easton entitled “Reminiscences”.

In 1986, she attended a National Conference on the Constitution, where only 3 teachers were selected to represent each state. She was in Who’s Who in America as well as Who’s Who in the World and was named Easton Teacher of the Year three times. Lastly, she is a Bridgewater State University Emeriti Faculty and has been active in the Easton Historical Society for decades.


Dr. Adrian Tinsley Award

Scott R. Gagnon ‘91

headshot photo of Scott Gagnon in a classroom with short gray hair wearing glasses, a white button-down shirt and a red, blue and yellow check tie

Scott has served as a director and faculty advisor of the Emmanuel College Theater Arts Program since 1999.

In addition to directing over 100 productions with the Emmanuel Theater, he has directed and acted in numerous professional and semiprofessional productions and has had his work nominated for awards and recognition repeatedly.

Scott has received Intercollegiate Broadcasting’s IBS Award for Outstanding Broadcast Content, The Colleges of the Fenway’s Inaugural Collaboration Award, the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival’s Regional Service Award and its National Awards for Outstanding Virtual Community Engagement, Innovative Use of Technology and Overall Production Design .

In 2021 Scott was named as the recipient of the prestigious Kennedy Center Medallion. Considered one of the highest honors in the field of theater education, it names individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to the teaching and producing of theatre and who have significantly dedicated their time, artistry, and enthusiasm to the development of the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.


Dr. George A. Weygand Award

Matthew J. Quimby ’04, G’07

headshot photo of Matt Quimby wearing a dark gray suit with blue and white small checked button down shirt and a blue, white and grey tie

Matthew is a dedicated member of the Bridgewater Alumni Association having served as President and now in the role of Past President on the Board of Directors.

This past year, he served as Chairperson of the BAA Nomination Committee and led the effort through a new process with precision, clarity, thought, and consideration ending with a newfound professionalism with the recruitment and appointment of new BAA members.

He has shared his insight and leadership abilities with his fraternity Sigma Pi as an advisor and supporter. He also serves as the wrestling representative for the Athletic Alumni Advisory Board and as a committee member for the Bridgewater State University Athletics Hall of Fame.

Matt can be described as a doer having given the best of himself to the Bridgewater Alumni Association and to Bridgewater State University


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Bridgewater State University
26 Summer Street
Bridgewater, MA 02325
United States


Jones Alumni House
Bridgewater State University
26 Summer Street
Bridgewater, MA 02325
United States

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