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Lawrence and Slyhoff to be honored at CSU–Pueblo Gala May 16

Release Date: March 11, 2014

Cora Zaletel

Executive Director, External Affairs

Colorado State University-Pueblo

(719) 549-2810

Press Release

PUEBLO – Longtime community leader and University supporter Joyce Lawrence and Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce President Rod Slyhoff will be honored with President’s Medallions for Distinguished Service as part of the 2014 President’s Gala on Friday, May 16 in the Occhiato University Center (OUC) Ballroom. Donors underwrite the evening’s expenses, guaranteeing that all proceeds directly benefit future generations of CSU-Pueblo students through scholarships and programs.

The 2014 President’s Gala will feature the music of students and faculty from the Department of Music. Tickets for the 2014 President’s Gala are $125 per person or $1,500 for a corporate table of 8. Information on tickets, sponsorships, and corporate tables is available through the CSU-Pueblo Foundation, 719-549-2380 or at

As part of the 2014 President’s Gala, Lawrence and Slyhoff will receive President’s Medallions for Distinguished Service, which recognize individuals who set high standards of ethics and values to serve as examples for CSU-Pueblo students and the campus community as a whole through their profession, exceptional service, and/or contributions to humanity. Recipients support the University’s continual progress toward future goals and achievements and/or make significant contributions as an advocate of post secondary education. A President’s Medallion for Distinguished Alumni Achievement also will be awarded, but will be announced at a later date. 

Lawrence will receive the medallion for Distinguished Service to the University for giving of her time, talent, and resources to better the institution. As State Representative from House District #45, she led the successful charge in 2002 for the legislation that changed the University’s name from University of Southern Colorado to CSU-Pueblo and brought benefits from the association with the CSU System and the CSU brand. As a state representative and Pueblo City Councilwoman, she initiated numerous bills that have enabled the Southern Colorado region to flourish, focusing in particular on policy improved living conditions through welfare reform, safety and transportation, and Medicaid.  Additionally, she has served on the CSU-Pueblo Foundation board both as a director and sustaining trustee, and along with her husband Richard, has given significant resources to the University in support of the Nursing Department, among other gifts.

Slyhoff will receive the medallion for Distinguished Service to the Community. He has been a stalwart advocate and cheerleader for the Pueblo community and CSU-Pueblo throughout his years in Pueblo, but most noticeably and vocally in his 20 years as CEO and President of the Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce. He has been a true partner with the University as the community and university joined forces to bring back a football team, to host three recent national athletic championship events, and just last August to announce a three-year, $25 million fundraising campaign. Slyhoff truly understands that when CSU-Pueblo thrives, so, too, does the city of Pueblo.

His active lobbying efforts with the Colorado Legislature have brought attention to the community as well as produced changes in education that ultimately will improve the future workforce. He has strengthened Pueblo’s Sister City relations by developing opportunities for business, tourism, educational, and cultural exchanges. All these efforts reflect a desire to enhance town-gown relations and to better the teaching and learning environments on this campus both for staff and students alike.

Colorado State University - Pueblo is a regional, comprehensive university emphasizing professional, career-oriented, and applied programs. Displaying excellence in teaching, celebrating diversity, and engaging in service and outreach, CSU-Pueblo is distinguished by access, opportunity, and the overall quality of services provided to its students.

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