September 26, 2007

Three honored as Distinguished Alumni

by Kathy Dillard


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CARBONDALE, Ill. — The SIU Alumni Association will honor three prominent graduates as Distinguished Alumni at 2:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 5 at a public reception at the Student Recreation Center's Alumni Lounge. The event is during SIUC Homecoming activities. The ceremony includes unveiling the framed pictures of the three alumni that will join the Distinguished Alumni wall in the Student Recreation Center.

The 2007 SIUC Distinguished Alumni are Lynda Lee Kaid, professor of telecommunication at the University of Florida; Ella Lacey, former faculty member in the SIU School of Medicine and the College of Education and Human Services and an international volunteer; and Anamai Singhabhandhu, former Deputy Permanent Secretary and Ministry Spokesperson in her native Thailand.

Here is a closer look at this year's honorees:

Lynda Lee Kaid of Gainesville, Fla., a professor of telecommunication in the College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Florida, where she is a UF Research Foundation Professor, is a three-degree graduate of SIUC. A native of Eldorado, she received her bachelor's degree in German and her master's and doctoral degrees in speech communication. Kaid is an accomplished author with more than 80 articles published in the world's leading political science and communications journals. A specialist in political communication, her professional and academic accomplishments focus on the study of political advertising and the role of news media in politics. Before joining the University of Florida, she directed the Political Commercial Archive at the University of Oklahoma, the world's largest collection of political radio and television commercials. In 1996, Kaid became the George Lynn Cross Research Professor at the University of Oklahoma, one of the highest distinctions a researcher can receive at that university. A three-time Senior Fulbright Scholar, she currently serves as the national coordinator for UVote, a consortium of national and international scholars who are working to increase political participation among young citizens in the United States and Europe.

Ella Phillips Lacey earned her bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in psychology, rehabilitation administration, and community health education, respectively, at SIUC. She demonstrates excellence as an educator, volunteer, and leader in a variety of venues. Lacey retired from the SIU School of Medicine in 1994, but remains active in many settings since retirement. She is widely recognized for her devoted work to improve health delivery systems and to health care for the indigent and persons with limited resources. She was instrumental in developing and implementing a plan that improved ambulance service in seven Southern Illinois counties. She conducted research on pica, an eating disorder found largely among women characterized as low-income individuals. After retiring, Lacey dedicated herself to serving as a long-term international volunteer. She served as a Peace Corp trainee and volunteer trainer as a child survival specialist, in Zomba, Malawi for two years. She studied the health care system in Vera Cruz, Mexico, and worked in the Worldwide Polio Eradication Program in northern India and in several regions of Africa. She is a Carbondale resident.

Anamai Singhabhandhu of Bangkok, Thailand, earned a doctoral degree in chemistry and biochemistry at SIUC. After graduation, Singhabhandhu returned to Thailand and resumed her work with the Department of Science in the Ministry of Industry. She was a member of one of the leading teams selected to research appropriate ways to reduce industrial pollutants. She analyzed and researched toxic, industrial, and environmental pollutants as a member of the physics and engineering division in the Department of Science at the Ministry of Industry, where her accomplishments earned her an appointment as the first chief of the pollution analyses and research subdivision. Later she became director of the analytical chemistry training division. She held the positions of chief of the metrology development program and director of the physics and engineering division with the Ministry of Industry. She was Deputy Director General in the Department of Science Service during a period of conflict regarding a national measurement system that resulted in the National Metrological Development Act, approved by the Royal Thai government, for the Establishment of the National Institute of Metrology in Thailand. Singhabhandhu also was director of the technical and public relations division and general inspector and deputy permanent secretary of the Ministry of Science, Technology, and Environment. Her government appointments include ministry spokesperson, secretary, and chairman of the Joint Committee and of the Working Group on Public Sector Reform. She was also a chairman of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Committee on Science and Technology (ASEAN -COST). Recently, she accepted an appointment to the government sub-committee for the evaluation of public sector inspection.


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