2024 Distinguished Alumni

On April 11, 2024, Arts & Sciences honored five alumni and friends for their achievements, service, and commitment to the liberal arts.

Meet the 2024 Recipients

Brittany Packnett Cunningham, AB '06

Brittany Packnett Cunningham is an interdisciplinary activist, creative and equity executive, and Founder and Principal of Love & Power Works, a full-service social impact agency, under which she has built multiple projects and served diverse communities and industries. She is also Host and Executive Producer of news and justice podcast UNDISTRACTED, in its third season on the Meteor Network, and an on-air political analyst.


Richard G. Engelsmann

Richard G. 'Dick' Engelsmann is a St. Louis business leader and philanthropist who, in 2023, endowed the deanship in Arts & Sciences. His father earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from WashU in 1921 and his late wife earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in fashion design from the university in 1965. Engelsmann, his father, and his brother founded Beltservice Corporation in 1969. The company grew to become one of the world’s leading fabricators of custom conveyor belts and a major belting wholesaler.


Lisa Sharkey, AB '80

Lisa Sharkey is the senior vice president and director of creative development at HarperCollins where her team has acquired numerous high-profile non- fiction books, including more than 75 New York Times Bestsellers.


John C. Solenberger, PhD '69

John Solenberger retired after a decorated career at DuPont. He led the development of global standards — adopted by 190 nations — that govern materials used in motors, transformers, and lighting systems.


Dr. Rochelle Walensky, AB '91

Rochelle Walensky is an infectious disease clinician who has served as director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, and chief of the division of infectious diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Learn more about past Distinguished Alumni Award winners for Arts & Sciences.

Distinguished Alumni Awards