UMKC alumna Michelle LaPointe receives highest alumni service award from UM System

KANSAS CITY, MO. — Michelle LaPointe, a University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) alumna (B.A., ’80), will receive a University of Missouri System Alumni Alliance Award on Nov. 18. The Alumni Alliance award is the highest alumni service award from the UM System. An award is given for each campus and the UM Extension annually, along with awards given by the UM System president.

The director of development at the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, LaPointe is a past recipient of UMKC’s top alumni honor for service, the Bill French Alumni Service Award. A vice president of the UMKC Alumni Association, LaPointe co-chaired UMKC’s 75th anniversary celebration and for four years chaired the UMKC Alumni Awards celebration. She helped launch UMKC’s Alumni Spring Theater event and most recently chaired UMKC’s 2011 Homecoming. Her other philanthropic efforts include the Ronald McDonald House and the Kidney Foundation.

“Michelle is the kind of volunteer that organizations dream of having,” said Curt Crespino, vice chancellor for Advancement. “She is a passionate, dedicated and loyal alumna who works tirelessly for the University, its students and its alumni. We’re thrilled to see her recognized by the System for her service.”

The following individuals also will receive UM System Alumni Alliance Awards:

  • Representative Chris Kelly (JD, ’76) — University of Missouri-Columbia: Since his election to the Missouri House of Representatives in 2008, Kelly has been a champion for the University of Missouri. A senior member of the House Budget committee, he has sponsored legislation for the benefit of the University, including a bill to allow higher education institutions to issue bonds for capital projects.
  • Michael W. Jones (B.S., ’76) — University of Missouri-St. Louis: Jones serves as senior policy advisor to the St. Louis County Executive. He also chairs two development projects in the St. Louis Region — the Lambert Airport Redevelopment Commission and the Midwest China Hub Commission. Missouri Governor Jay Nixon recently appointed Jones to become a member of the Missouri Board of Education.
  • Jerry Bayless (B.S. ’59; M.S. ’82) — Missouri University of Science and Technology: Bayless has served as associate professor, chair of civil engineering and associate dean of engineering at Missouri S&T, while continuing to maintain a regular classroom schedule of teaching and advising students. He is a recipient of the Chancellor Medal and serves as the Treasurer of the Miner Alumni Association.
  • Representative Mike Thomson — University of Missouri System: Representative Thomson is the chair of the House Higher Education committee and a member of the House Budget committee. His background as a teacher, coach and counselor puts him in a unique position to understand the importance of education.
  • Senator Kurt Schaefer — University of Missouri System: A University of Missouri-Columbia alumnus and partner in the law firm of Lathrop and Gage, Schaefer was elected to the Missouri Senate in 2008. Schaefer serves as chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee and is a member of the Senate Education committee. In 2009 and 2010, he was named Legislator of the Year by the Associated Students of the University of Missouri.
  • Anita Hampton — University of Missouri Extension: Serving as vice chair of communications for the University of Missouri Extension, Hampton advocates for the extension on a state level and in Washington, D.C. Professionally, Hampton is a business owner from Bolivar.

The Alumni Alliance is a representative body of alumni of the four UM System campuses along with University Extension who advocate for the University of Missouri.

About the University of Missouri-Kansas City:

The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC), one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 15,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a four-part mission: life and health sciences; visual and performing arts; urban issues and education; and a vibrant learning and campus life experience. For more information about UMKC, visit You can also find us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and watch us on YouTube.

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