HAA Awards 2014

Top row from left: Robert R. Bowie Jr. , Marilyn J. Holifield, and William R. Horton Jr. Bottom row from left: Winifred White Neisser, Eleanor Gossard Shore, and Maria A. Skirnick.

Established in 1990, the Harvard Alumni Association (HAA) Awards recognize outstanding service to the University. This year’s awards are scheduled to be presented on September 18 during the HAA board of directors’ fall meeting.


Robert R. Bowie Jr. ’73 of Monkton, Maryland, has dedicated countless hours to Harvard across nearly four decades, starting with his work as an alumni interviewer for his local Harvard club. A former HAA president, Bowie has also led the national schools and scholarships committee, and co-founded the HAA’s Early College Awareness program for middle-school students. In 2009, he received the Hiram S. Hunn Memorial Schools and Scholarships Award for his more than 30 years of service as an interviewer.

Marilyn J. Holifield, J.D. ’72, of Miami, helped initiate the Global Month of Service program as a leader of the HAA’s Public Service Task Force, and is also a former HAA elected director and secretary and member-at-large of the executive committee. At Harvard Law School, she has helped with class fundraising and was an honorary committee member for the 2013 event “Celebration 60, Women Transforming Our Communities and the World.” Holifield is currently a board member of the Harvard Club of Miami.

William R. Horton Jr. ’77, of Oakville, Ontario, is a long-time alumni interviewer and is a former chair of the Harvard schools and scholarships committee in Alberta. In addition, Horton was a founding executive board member of the Harvard Club of Edmonton, and has been a vice president of the Harvard Business School Club of Calgary and president of the Harvard Club of Toronto. A former HAA regional director for Canada, he has recently reinvigorated the orientation program for new board members. Horton has twice chaired the annual Alumni Leadership Conference and, in 2007, he led the HAA Global Series alumni event in Toronto. 

Winifred White Neisser ’74, of Los Angeles, was a Harvard Overseer from 1994 to 2000 and currently serves on the HAA’s Committee to Nominate Overseers and Elected Directors. Long active in Radcliffe affairs, she was on the ad hoc committee for the founding of the Radcliffe Institute and on its tenth anniversary regional committee. A former HAA elected director and vice president of the Harvard-Radcliffe Club of Southern California, where she helped lead the schools and scholarship committee, Neisser has also served on her class reunion-planning committee and has interviewed candidates for admission to the College.

Eleanor Gossard Shore ’51, M.D. ’55, M.P.H. ’70,of Needham, Massachusetts, began her University career as a primary-care physician in the health-services department in 1961, then held administrative roles, such as assistant to then president Derek Bok for health affairs, and assistant to the Committee on Natural and Applied Sciences of the Board of Overseers. When she retired in 2005, Shore was dean for faculty affairs at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and deputy director of the HMS Center in Excellence in Women’s Health. She is now a senior consultant to the Office for Academic and Clinical Affairs. She and her husband, Bullard professor of psychiatry emeritus Miles Shore ’50, M.D. ’54, initiated the HMS 50th Anniversary Fellowship Program for Scholars in Medicine in 1995, renamed for the couple in 2004.

Maria A. Skirnick, J.D. ’69, of Plandome, New York, is on the Dean’s Advisory Committee at Harvard Law School (HLS) and has been active with the Harvard Law School Association. She was the sponsorship chair of the HLS Public Interest Law Celebration and has established the Skirnick Fellowship for Public Interest Law. At the HAA, she has been an executive committee treasurer and regional director, has led both the Alumni Leadership Conference and the clubs committee, and recently helped rewrite the HAA constitution. A former president of the Harvard Club of Long Island and a director of the Harvard Club of Chicago, she is currently on the Committee to Nominate Overseers and Elected Directors and the Committee on University Resources.

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