January 18, 2008
Rollins College is pleased to announce graduate Tom Donnelly (Class of 1963) is the recipient of the 2008 Distinguished Alumnus Award. This is the Rollins College Alumni Association's most prestigious award.
After a distinguished 30-year career with the United State Agency for International Development (USAID), Donnelly retired in 1995. Since that time, he has dedicated his efforts to community service activities. His main passion during recent years has been volunteering with Florida Hospital's SHARES Program. Donnelly has served as director of SHARES for the past six years.
SHARES has been an international outreach of Florida Hospital for the past 12 years. The organization sends surgeons, anesthesiologists, family medicine physicians and nurses to Mexico on a regular basis to perform cleft lip and/or palate surgery for children and to provide medical care and cervical cancer screening to rural communities.
Highlights during Donnelly’s career with the USAID include:
In Ecuador, he was responsible for designing and implementing the country’s first nationwide vocational education system. He also developed a series of university bookstores on all campuses and pioneered the Ecuadorian Youth Volunteer Service.
In Costa Rica, he helped bring 1,500 socio-economically disadvantaged Central American youth to the U.S. for two years to live with American families and study at community colleges.
In Mexico, he helped develop programs to improve maternal child health, income generation, micro and small business development and increased exports.
He designed and implemented the Central American Peace Scholarship Program, which brought 10,000 Central Americans to the U.S. each year for academic and technical studies.
He designed a university linkages project to improve Latin American higher education through ties with American universities.
He developed a new market-driven university textbook program which reduced textbook costs to students by up to 80 percent.
He has also provided technical assistance to major USAID projects in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
Donnelly received the 2008 Distinguished Alumnus Award during a special ceremony held at Rollins on January 17.