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Alumni Awards 2023
An evening to recognize and celebrate the outstanding impact and achievements of our alumni, students, faculty and staff.
2023 Award Recipients:
Outstanding Alumnus Award
Marcia Zaruba O’Connor '90
Alumni Service Award
Ryan M. Raiker '16, '17
John L. Geoghegan Alumni Citizenship Award
Col. William T. (Tom) Vossler '68
John L. Geoghegan Student Citizenship Award
Donya Moore '24
R. Kelso Carter Award
This is one of many exciting events taking place during
the week of the inauguration of President Stacey Robertson.
Visit the inauguration website to learn more.
Learn more about our 2023 Alumni Award Recipients
The Outstanding Alumnus Award is awarded to a recipient who has brought honor, recognition and distinction to Widener/PMC, through service to their community, their profession, and/or by honors received, service rendered, or other accomplishments.
2023 Recipient: Marcia Zaruba O'Connor '90
Marcia Zaruba O’Connor is the CEO and Founder of The O’Connor Group (TOC), a leading provider of Talent Acquisition and Human Resources consulting for the Life Science, Healthcare, Professional Service, Information Technology and Manufacturing sectors. Based in King of Prussia, PA with offices in Raleigh, NC and Tampa, FL, The O’Connor Group has over 80 employees around the country. Recently celebrating their 15th year anniversary, The O’Connor Group is a Top 100 Woman-Owned Business and certified by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council.
In 2022 alone, TOC was fortunate to be the recipient of the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Businesses, The Philadelphia Business Journals’ Best Places to Work and Most Admired CEO awards, The Inquirer’s Soaring 76, Philadelphia Titan 100, and the Entrepreneurs Forum Philly 100 awards.
Currently, Marcia is the President for the Entrepreneur Organization, Philadelphia Chapter.
Prior to founding TOC, Marcia held various senior level positions at Arthur Andersen and Andersen Consulting. Marcia gained global Human Resources experience as the Director of Human Capital Practice for the Philadelphia office of Resources Global Professionals (RGP), a global leading provider of project professionals.
As part of her deep commitment to helping entrepreneurs, Marcia just launched “ShadowHer.org”, a new non-profit initiative specifically geared to assist female entrepreneurs achieve success.
Marcia has also started and created other groups – such as the annual HR Person of the Year Award, the Women’s CEO Breakfast Club (that meets monthly) and EWNS– Executive Women Networking Series.
Alongside her outstanding leadership at TOC, Marcia has also been a generous volunteer for Widener University, serving on the School of Business Administration’s (SBA) Accounting & Information Management Advisory Board and participating in Beta Alpha Psi Accounting Honor Society. She served as a panelist at the inaugural SBA Future of Work Conference in 2021 and has served on the SBA Health Care Management Alumni Board and the Widener/PMC Alumni Council. Marcia is also a frequent attendee at Widener Homecoming events.
Marcia earned her MS degree in Human Organization Development from Villanova and her BS degree in Accounting from Widener University. She is also a graduate of the Goldman Sachs' 10,000 Small Business Program.
This award is granted for volunteer service to the university as a whole or to a particular sector or major within the university, and/or to the recipient’s profession where their education at Widener/PMC was a central factor providing the service. This award is be given to honor time, service, and commitment to the university.
2023 Recipient: Ryan M. Raiker '16, '17
Ryan Raiker is the Vice President of Marketing for AYR, a Series A startup providing AI-powered Intelligent Document Processing (IDP)and Intelligent Automation for Enterprise Clients. As a digital-first marketing leader, Ryan has experience creating marketing systems built around effective strategic planning, customer empathy, compelling content, and operational efficiency. He brings a strategic viewpoint to reimagine how people work and businesses operate. He is a recognized thought leader in business, technology, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and process.
Currently, Ryan is also the President and CEO of Nassau Inn Beachfront Resort, Vice President of Operations of KSR Communication Services, and President and Lead Consultant of Limited Lime Consulting.
Ryan serves as an adjunct professor at Widener University’s School of Business Administration in the fields of business management, entrepreneurship, communications, and digital media informatics. He is a frequent participant in alumni and career events and has delivered TEDx talks at Widener on defining personal brand and leaving a legacy in the digital age.
He is also a member of the Artificial Intelligence and FinTech Advisory Board at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Ryan actively writes in publications on Medium and has been featured on NBC, RTInsights.com, MarketWatch, TowardsDataScience.com, Data-Driven Investor, Insurance Innovation Reporter, Yahoo News, and more.
Ryan earned his MBA and BS in Business Administration from Widener. He is also a Professional Certified Marketer and Certified Digital Marketing Professional.
This award is given in the memory of John L. Geoghegan '63 to a graduate who has brought honor to the university through academic achievement, demonstrated leadership capabilities and community service.
2023 Recipient: Col. William T. (Tom) Vossler '68
Col. William T. (Tom) Vossler graduated from Pennsylvania Military College in 1968 and served in the U.S. Army for the next 30 years. He commanded an infantry platoon in combat during the Vietnam War and a mechanized infantry-armor battalion task force of 1,200 American and German soldiers in Germany in 1986-1988, prior to the fall of the Berlin Wall. Since retiring from the Army in 1998, he’s worked as a Licensed Battlefield Guide at Gettysburg National Military Park, specializing in battlefield studies and leadership seminars.
Col. Vossler has conducted leadership seminars with national and global corporations and organizations including Boeing, the Heritage Foundation, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and more. He has also appeared on numerous historical television programs including The History Channel and Army Heritage Center Foundation. He is the co-author of four books on the American Civil War, including the award-winning A Field Guide to Gettysburg.
Col. Vossler hosts the Widener University Dauntless Battalion at his farm for tours and leadership seminars on the Gettysburg battlefield through the ROTC Staff Ride Program. He is a frequent guest speaker at Widener and provides expertise to ROTC students through his lectures. He also narrated the World War II: PMC Men Who Served documentary screened at Widener’s virtual homecoming in 2020.
In addition to his degree in history from PMC, Col. Vossler also holds a master’s degree from Georgia State University. He is a graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College and the U.S. Army War College.
Currently, Col. Vossler and his wife Barbara own and operate Mountain View Farm in Gettysburg, PA where they raise purebred and registered Simmental beef cattle.
This award is given in the memory of John L. Geoghegan '63 to a current student who has brought honor to the University through academic achievement, demonstrated leadership capabilities and community service.
2023 Recipient: Donya Moore '24
Donya Moore is a junior, majoring in Sport and Event Management at Widener University. She is widely involved in university activities including service as the President of Widener’s National Council of Negro Women, Vice President of Eta Sigma Delta international honor society for hospitality students, member of the School of Business Administration (SBA) Dean’s Student Advisory Board, and University Ambassador.
Donya works in event planning and communications for the Office of the President and University Advancement, planning presidential events at the Billie Kirkbride House, organizing student events for Homecoming, coordinating logistics for Inauguration week, and more. She also works on campus as a Resident Assistant, mentoring residents and developing programs to foster community among first-year SBA students.
In addition to her work on campus, Donya is also a Game Day Suite Supervisor for Aramark at Lincoln Financial Field and the Wells Fargo Center and was recently promoted to Production Assistant for the Mann Music Center.
Donya served as a panelist at the 2022 Live Event Career Exploration at Rock Lititz, speaking on Taking the Next Steps as a Manager. She has also participated in the Hersheypark Leadership and Development Internship and is certified in Responsible Alcohol Management, Food Safety Management, and Peer Education by the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators.
She is also the recipient of the Black Student Union Black Girl Magic Award, the Sarah E. Bone Scholarship, and the Oskin Leadership Scholarship.
This award is given to an individual other than a graduate of Widener University who, in the opinion of the Alumni Association, has brought honor to the university through their acts and accomplishments. This award is a token of appreciation for the contributions to the university community through service to the university.
2023 Recipient: Jill Borin
Jill Borin has worked at Widener University for over 20 years as an archivist and Research and Instruction Librarian. Currently, Jill is the Head of Archives & Distinctive Collections and the Interim Head of Research & Instructional Services at Wolfgram Memorial Library.
As the Head of Archives, Jill is passionate about collecting, preserving, and displaying the history and scholarship of Widener and its predecessor institutions. Recently, she has developed a digital repository for student academic posters and presentations, engineering senior projects, doctoral dissertations, master’s theses and more. Jill has collaborated with the academic database JSTOR and the Digital Public Library to add selected archival collections on these platforms, increasing accessibility to Widener’s rich history.
Jill served as an integral part of Widener’s 200th Anniversary celebrations, leading the team that updated the physical timeline exhibit in Alumni Auditorium and launched the accompanying interactive digital timeline as well. She is a frequent speaker at conferences and workshops at Widener and beyond on topics including digital accessibility and uncovering marginalized voices in archival material.
Currently, she serves on the Philadelphia Area Consortium of Special Collections Libraries Board of Directors, chairs the Tri-State College Library Cooperative’s Archives and Special Collections Interest Group, and participates on a number of Widener faculty, university, and library committees.
Jill earned a Master’s in Library and Information Science from Rutgers University, a Master of Arts in History from the University of Delaware, and a Bachelor of Arts in History from Muhlenberg College.