URI announces first recipients of Distinguished Achievement Awards

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KINGSTON, R.I. — August 29, 2006 — The head of the Rhode Island Community Food Bank, the founder of a leading technology company, the chief of CVS/pharmacy and a retired nursing professor and philanthropist are the first recipients of the University of Rhode Island Distinguished Achievement Awards.

The recipients, all graduates of the University, are: Bernard J. Beaudreau, executive director of the Rhode Island Community Food Bank; Barbara A. Cardillo, co-founder and retired vice president of a wireless technology company; Tom Ryan, chairman, president and chief executive officer of CVS; and Cynthia Sculco, a nursing professor and a major supporter of nursing at URI and nationwide.

Ceremonies in their honor will be held at the Rhode Island Convention Center, Saturday, Oct. 14. Individual college receptions will be held at 6:30 p.m. and the main program will begin at 7:30. Tickets are $75 per person and $15.95 for children 14 and under. For more information, please call 401-874-2014. RSVP date is Sept. 30.

“The University has established the awards to honor those individuals or corporations who personify the University’s tradition of excellence. In recognizing their professional achievement, leadership contributions or community service, these selective awards bring distinction to each recipient and to the University of Rhode Island,” URI President Robert L. Carothers said.

Bernie Beaudreau, the executive director of the Rhode Island Community Food Bank since 1995, has spent his career giving to others. From 1984 through 1995 he worked for Oxfam America and before that he worked for the Women’s Development Corp., a Rhode Island housing organization.

Based at 200 Niantic Ave. in Providence the food bank he directs sends food to about 430 member agencies, churches, pantries, kitchens, daycare centers and other organizations that distribute food directly to the needy.

During his 10 years as the head of the food bank, he has tripled food distributions, now up to 8.3 million pounds, and cash contributions have grown from $1.4 million to $3.6 million.

Beuadreau also directed the agency’s response to Hurricane Katrina. Three staff members traveled 1,400 miles to Jackson, Miss. in a convoy of two Food Bank trucks and then to Alexandria, La. Beaudreau joined the team in Louisiana to assist in the distribution of food to the most devastated parishes of the disaster area.

A graduate of Chariho High School, Beaudreau earned his bachelor’s degree from URI in 1977 and in 1979, he earned a master’s in community planning from the University.

Barbara Cardillo is a technology marketing executive in California’s Silicon Valley, and has co-founded three successful high technology companies in the past 10 years. Cardillo recently retired from her latest company, Firetide Inc., where she was vice president of marketing. The privately held wireless technology company, in which she retains an ownership interest, develops high performance wireless networks for use in applications such as video surveillance, Wi-Fi networks on college campuses, and municipal public safety.

In December 2004, Firetide was selected as one of the Top 100 Innovative Companies by the technology magazine, Red Herring.

A resident of Los Gatos, Calif., Cardillo is a volunteer town commissioner for community services and is writing a novel about Silicon Valley.

From 1988 to 1997, Cardillo worked at Apple Computer where she was director of desktop product marketing and later served as president of marketing for the company’s PowerBook Division.

Cardillo credits her bachelor’s degree from URI, which she earned in 1972, as fundamental to her success in business. The former president of Sigma Delta Tau sorority said her public speaking and communication courses with Professor Emerita Agnes Doody provided an excellent foundation for her marketing career.

Cardillo has a master’s degree from Boston University and a doctorate in communications from Stanford University.

Tom Ryan: Even though he heads the nation’s largest pharmacy chain, Tom Ryan makes community service and philanthropy top priorities. A long-time supporter of the College of Pharmacy, of which he is a graduate, and Rhody athletics, Ryan has volunteered to chair the new $100 million URI capital campaign to bolster the University’s endowment, especially as it relates to faculty and student support, the University libraries, leading academic and research initiatives and outstanding facilities.

The 1975 College of Pharmacy graduate, who also holds an honorary doctorate from URI, is justifiably proud of the CVS/pharmacy Charity Classic, which recently completed its eighth run. The charity golf event brings top pros to the beautiful Rhode Island Country Club. Since 1999, the Classic has raised nearly $7 million for charity.

At URI, Ryan co-chaired, with former Gov. Lincoln Almond, the successful $15 million private fund drive for the basketball and events venue that bears his name.

In addition to annual support to the College of Pharmacy, Ryan and CVS provided the majority of the funding for the Thomas M. Ryan/CVS Chair in Community Pharmacy, which is designed to support a prestigious faculty member whose focus is community pharmacy work.

Cynthia Sculco: A 1965 graduate of URI’s nursing program, Sculco earned her master’s degree and her doctorate, both from Columbia University Teachers College. She lives in New York City.

Her impressive nursing and teaching credentials include work with Presbyterian Hospital, New York University, and Hunter College, where she coordinated the graduate medical-surgical nursing program. She is also president of the Nurse’s Educational Fund, a national organization that provides scholarships for nurses in graduate programs. Currently, she is an adjunct associate professor of nursing at New York University, and she is also a member of the Alumni Council of Teachers College at Columbia University and she is a trustee of the URI Foundation. A native of Westerly Sculco maintains close ties to Rhode Island.

She has never forgotten her URI roots, especially those connected to the nursing program. About 10 years ago, Sculco established a research endowment, which provides seed money to URI nursing faculty. A major supporter of various College of Nursing projects, Sculco made a leadership gift to the student commons, a renovation project at White Hall designed to provide students with comfortable and efficient meeting and study space. When introduced at meetings, Sculco is proudly recognized as a URI graduate, and she has regularly made herself available to the College. She serves on the Dean’s Advisory Committee and served as honorary chair of the Hart Garden Campaign and co-chair of the College’s 60th anniversary gala last fall.

The URI Distinguished Achievement Awards were established to provide broad recognition to alumni and friends of the University. For many years, several of the University’s colleges have had their own awards programs to honor their alumni and supporters. But University officials and college deans developed a unified awards program so that the University as a whole, its alumni and its friends, could celebrate the winners’ accomplishments at one time and one venue.