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Alumni Awards Nomination Form

Past Alumni Awards

The University of Tampa Alumni Awards are the highest honors presented by the UT Alumni Association on an annual basis. Selected through a highly competitive process, each recipient has made a lasting impact on society and on UT through outstanding professional, philanthropic or volunteer accomplishments.

2024 Alumni Award Honorees

The Alumni Association is proud to announce the 2024 Alumni Award honorees. These individuals are recognized for their outstanding achievements in their professional fields and for their dedicated service to the University.

These prestigious awards are presented at the annual Alumni Awards Dinner the evening before Spring Commencement. Our current recipients are:

The Honorable Virginia Covington

2024 Class of 1931 Award - The Honorable Virginia Covington ’76, MBA '77

Virginia M. Hernandez Covington ’76, MBA ’77 has been a U.S. District Court judge for the Middle District of Florida since 2004. Previously, Covington served on the state intermediate appellate court and was an assistant U.S. attorney. In 2021, Covington received the Florida Supreme Court Federal Judicial Pro Bono Award, and she was inducted into the Florida Women’s Hall of Fame. The Florida Association for Women Lawyers recognized Covington in 2023 as Florida’s judge of the year. Covington also has served on UT’s Board of Counselors.

Wil White

2024 Young Alumni Award - Wil White '20

Wil White '20 is the chief giving officer at the Little Saint Nick Foundation, an organization that provides gifts to children in hospitals. He oversees collaboration with healthcare facilities,
corporations and youth groups, developing LSNF community programs across the country and Canada. White has been part UT’s Lowth Entrepreneurship Center Incubator program, and in 2023, he was honored at the center’s alumni awards. He is the Tampa Bay Alumni Council philanthropy co-chair and is part of the Tampa Bay Chamber’s Emerging Leaders program.

Sabrina Griffith Jackson

2024 Alumni Achievement Award - Sabrina Griffith Jackson '02

Sabrina G. Jackson ’02 is a National Diversity Council-certified professional with nearly 20 years of experience as a DEI educator. She is the associate vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion at Ultimate Medical Academy in Tampa, facilitating training on topics related to gender, sexuality, LGBTQ+ allyship, bias, race, colorism and classism. She is a consultant for community and professional groups and is on several nonprofit boards. She also owns Griffith Consulting LLC.

Benson Alex Riseman

2024 Esse Quam Videri - Benson Alex Riseman '78

Benson Alex Riseman '78 is president and CEO of BENSEA Enterprises, an entrepreneurial think tank and consultancy established in 2009 to transform ideas into independent, freestanding businesses. He is the co-founder of Green Dot Corporation, which is widely recognized as the inventor of the prepaid debit card industry. His background also includes a 20-year career in radio broadcasting managerial/sales positions. Riseman serves on UT’s Board of Trustees and the Lowth
Entrepreneurship Center advisory board. He has been involved in many volunteer and philanthropic activites at UT, and the new Recreation and Fitness Center was named the Benson Alex Riseman Fitness and Recreation Center.

Michael Southard

2024 Esse Quam Videri - Michael Southard '82

Michael Southard '82 is the founder and CEO of Elvisridge Capital, an investment firm in Cleveland, Ohio. His background also includes more than 22 years dedicated to the development of a contractor-driven consumer products company in the landscape lighting sector that was later sold to a Fortune 500 company. Southard’s philanthropic endeavors at UT have funded scholarships and construction projects. The Riverside Building was renamed the Southard Family Building in 2019 after an extensive renovation. Southard joined UT’s Board of Trustees in 2011. He is currently the board secretary and the incoming vice chair.