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Rivier honors business and community leaders with alumni achievement awards

The University presented four Alumni Achievement Awards to area graduates during Alumni Reunion Weekend in September. The awards highlight their outstanding leadership and contributions to their professions, the community, and their alma mater.

From left to right: Ashley Hall, Joan Catherine Widmer, John Fabrizio, and Raymond Noel

“Our alumni represent the University with pride and distinction through contributions to their professions, the community, and their alma mater,” says Karen Cooper, Vice President for University Advancement. “It is our privilege to recognize these four outstanding individuals for their commitment to the University’s mission of transforming hearts and minds to serve the world.”

The Outstanding Business Leader Award was presented to Raymond Noel, Class of 2000G, who earned his MBA from Rivier and currently serves on the President’s Circle Council. Noel enjoyed a distinguished, 25-year career in banking before becoming a Certified Private Wealth Advisor and establishing an independent financial planning firm. Working to provide creative financial strategies to manage his clients’ wealth, Noel helps individuals to plan for and achieve their retirement goals and business owners to enhance their enterprise value for eventual transfer or sale.  In 2017, Noel was awarded the Ethics Approved Seal by the International Association of Registered Financial Consultants. In 2018 and 2019, Forbes named him a Best-In-State Wealth Advisor for NH, and Barron’s has recognized him three times as one of America’s Top 1000 Financial Advisors.

The Outstanding Educator Award was presented to John Fabrizio, Class of 1998G. Fabrizio earned two master’s degrees, one in Special Education and the other in Educational Leadership, and a graduate certificate in Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports from Rivier. He has worked as a public school administrator for the past 19 years, rising to his current position as Assistant Superintendent of the Merrimack School District. Dedicated to his students and educators, he served on the NH State Professional Standards Board for six years and completed his final year as Chair. He has been involved in the CEEDAR Project for the past three years working to improve the pre-service training and certification process for New Hampshire educators.

 The Outstanding Nursing Professional Award was presented to Joan Catherine Widmer, Class of 2005, for her commitment to excellence and service to patients, nurses, and nursing education. She earned her Associate of Science in Nursing degree from Rivier and serves as the Nurse Executive Director of the New Hampshire Nurses Association. After a successful career in corporate accounting and finance, Widmer elected to pursue a second career in nursing. She was honored with election to the business honor society Beta Gamma Sigma and to the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau. Most recently, she practiced at Catholic Medical Center in the Emergency Department where she conducted a practice improvement project for performing an Influenza screen. She has been published and spoken nationally and internationally on a range of nursing topics.

The Young Alumni Award was presented to Ashley Hall, Class of 2018. Hall earned her bachelor’s degree in Public Health from Rivier and immediately entered the master’s degree program in Health and Wellness Management at Merrimack College. She pursued a fellowship in Cultural Competency and Health Literacy and now serves as an adjunct instructor in the College’s Public Health major. Hall is Program Manager of the Northeast Tobacco-Free Community Partnership, a Massachusetts Department of Public Health program. She oversees efforts in support of tobacco use prevention, education, and control in 50 cities and towns in northeastern Massachusetts.



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