1998 Distinguished Alumni Awards

On May 15, 1998, six recipients were honored for their achievements, service, and commitment to the liberal arts.

Meet The 1998 Recipients

Judith Spector Aronson, AB ’48, PhD ’67

Judith Spector Aronson has long been a local and national advocate for the arts and for education. She, with her husband, Adam, was instrumental in the founding of St. Louis's world-renowned Laumeier Sculpture Park.

Dr. Aronson is the founder of KidsPlace and she has served on the Task Force for the Washington University School of Fine Arts; she has been on the boards of the Saint Louis Art Museum, Mark Twain Summer Institute, Adult Education Council, Cultural and Arts Resources in Education for St. Louis, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, and Missouri Arts Council.

Dr. Aronson was a member of President Clinton's Advisory Committee on the Arts of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and served as an evaluator for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) program in teacher education. The author of numerous articles on the arts and on children’s issues, Dr. Aronson is a member of the William Greenleaf Eliot Society.

William H. Danforth

Dr. William H. Danforth became chairman of the Washington University Board of Trustees in July 1995. Beginning in 1971, he served the University as chancellor for 24 years, providing exemplary leadership for what has become one of the nation’s finest teaching and research institutions.

A graduate of Princeton University, Dr. Danforth received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School in 1951 and interned at Barnes Hospital. After serving in the United States Navy for two years, he completed his medical training at Barnes and St. Louis Children’s hospitals, joining the Washington University School of Medicine faculty in 1957. In 1967, he was appointed professor of internal medicine, which is his present faculty rank at the University.

From 1965 until his appointment as chancellor, he served as vice chancellor for medical affairs and president of the Washington University Medical Center. A Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, he is a member of the Institute of Medicine and has served on its council.

Dr. Danforth is a director of the board of trustees of the Danforth foundation and a trustee of the American Youth Foundation. Chairman of the board of governors of the St. Louis Christmas Carols Association, he also is co-chairman of the board of directors of Barnes-Jewish Hospital. He serves on the boards of Ralston Purina Company, Ralcorp, and BJC Health System, all headquartered in St. Louis.

Dr. Danforth and his wife, the former Elizabeth Gray, have devoted countless hours to meeting and communicating with students, parents, alumni, and friends of the University, on campus and throughout the world.

Kenneth L. Fox, AB ’38

Kenneth L. Fox is a retired associate editor and chief editorial writer for the Kansas City Star. He served as chief public relations officer for the United States Army in Great Britain and deputy chief of staff for press relations at the headquarters of General Dwight D. Eisenhower.

He is a five-time first-place winner of the National Editorial Writing Contest aviation section, was named Kansas City’s Aviation Man of the Year in 1959 for his leadership in winning public support to fund and build the present Kansas City International Airport, and won the TWA Writing Competition, Newspaper Aviation Development, in 1967.

He was awarded the Bronze Star and the Army Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster. Since 1988 he has sponsored the Kenneth L. and Mary H. Fox Scholarship in Arts and Sciences. An Annual Fund supporter since his graduation, he is a long-time member of the William Greenleaf Eliot Society.

Earle H. Harbison, Jr., AB ’48

Earle H. Harbison, Jr., chairman of the Harbison Corporation, retired from Monsanto Company in 1993, bringing to an end a distinguished 26-year career with the Fortune 500 company. For the last seven years at Monsanto, Mr. Harbison served as president and chief operating officer. Prior to joining Monsanto, he served with the Central Intelligence Agency for 18 years, rising to the rank of deputy director, and received the prestigious William A. Jump Award for distinguished service to the United States government.

Former chairman of G.D. Searle and Co. and the NutraSweet Company, Mr. Harbison is a board member of many corporations, including Merrill Lynch and Company, Inc., Angelica Corporation, Mutual of American, Harbour Group, Ltd., and Ever Corporation. He is a board member of Barnes-Jewish Hospital and the National Law Center of George Washington University; former chair of the Municipal Theatre Association, St. Louis; and former chair of the St. Louis Regional Commerce and Growth Association.

A trustee of Washington University, he is chair of the Arts and Sciences National Council, former president of the Williams Greenleaf Eliot Society, and recipient of a Distinguished Alumni Award at Founders Day 1987. He and his wife, the former Suzanne Groves Siegel, B.S.B.A. ’49, are sustaining charter members of the Danforth Circle, Life Benefactors of the Eliot Society, supporters of the Scholars in Arts and Sciences program, and recently benefactors of the Earle and Suzanne Harbison Faculty Fellowship in Arts & Sciences.

John P. Heinz, AB ’58

John P. Heinz is the Owen L. Coon Professor of Law, professor of sociology, and a member of the research faculty of the Institute for Policy Research, all at Northwestern University. He is a Distinguished Research Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and served as the foundation’s executive director from 1982 to 1986. A former member of the board of directors of The Fund for Justice, Professor Heinz currently serves on the advisory board of the Children and Family Justice Center; on the citizen’s Committee on the Juvenile Court, Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois; and on the Board of directors of Northwestern University Press.

Professor Heinz is the co-author of The Hollow Core: Private Interests in National Policy Making (1993), Chicago Lawyers: The Social Structure of the Bar (1982; revised, 1994), and Public Access to Information (1979). He also has published articles in law reviews, in social science journals, and in Harper’s and Sports Illustrated magazines. Professor Heinz has served as a consultant to Washington University’s Department of Political Science, served as the inaugural Thomas H. Eliot memorial lecturer in 1992, and is a faithful supporter of the University’s Annual Fund.

Marvin E. Levin, AB ’47, MD ’51

Marvin E. Levin, a world authority on diabetes, is professor emeritus of clinical medicine and associate director of the Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism Clinic at Washington University. His book, The Diabetic Foot, now in its sixth edition, is the classic text in the field. A highly respected practitioner, he also was admired for the excellence of his teaching at the School of Medicine.

A Fellow of the American College of Physicians and a Diplomate of the American Board of Internal Medicine, he retired from private practice in 1989, but has remained active in research and writing. He is the author of 150 publications, including research papers, review papers, editorials, articles, monographs, and book chapters. He is a member and past chair of the membership committee for the School of Medicine of the William Greenleaf Eliot Society, and he established the Barbara and Marvin E. Levin Visiting Professorship in Endocrinology.