The College of Eastern Utah’s 66th commencement address will honor 440 graduates Saturday, May 2 at 10 a.m. in the Bunnell-Dmitrich Athletic Center.
DENISE GREENLAW RAMONAS
Denise Greenlaw Ramonas recently left the U.S. Senate after working there for more than two decades. She served as the assistant secretary for the majority. She worked for two majority leaders and acted as the leader’s representative on the Senate floor whenever he was absent. Her responsibilities on the Senate floor afforded her the opportunity to work with all senators and their policy advisors working on federal legislation. It was part of her job to help get legislation scheduled, considered and completed in the Senate. Her career has been characterized as “a job with a view” into the intricate inner workings of the Senate. Denise also worked for Senator Pete V. Domenici (R-NM) as the general counsel to the Senate Budget Committee. Denise has been an adjunct professor in Europe, a lawyer in Houston, Texas and Salt Lake City, Utah, in addition to being a Utah State House Fellow for Governor Scott Matheson. A graduate of Carbon High School, she attended CEU for one semester then transferred to the University of Utah where she earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and a juris doctorate degree. She is the daughter of Margaret and the late Elmo Turcasso of Price.
HONORARY DEGREE RECIPIENT
CECELIA HARRISON FOXLEY
Cecilia Harrison Foxley, Ph.D., is on sabbatical after having served for over 10 years as commissioner of the Utah System of Higher Education and chief executive officer to the Utah State Board of Regents. Prior to her appointment, she served as the deputy commissioner and associate commissioner for academic affairs. Her institutional experience includes faculty and administrative positions at Utah State University, the University of Iowa and the University of Minnesota. In January 2005, she will become a Regents professor in the educational psychology department at the University of Utah.
She earned her doctorate in educational psychology with emphases in administration, teaching, research and counseling from the U of U. She completed a post-doctoral internship with the National Training Laboratories Institute for Applied Behavioral Science. She holds a bachelor’s of arts in English from USU and a master’s of arts in English from the U of U.
Dr. Foxley was active in the State Higher Education Executive Officers (SHEEO) national organization and was the 1998-1999 SHEEO president. At the time she stepped down from the Utah commissioner post, she was the longest serving SHEEO commissioner in the U.S. She also served as a commissioner of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) and the Education Commission of the States (ECS).
HONORARY DEGREE RECIPIENT
Don Burge recently retired from full time teaching at the College of Eastern Utah where he has worked since 1959 as a member of the geology department. During his 45 years of full-time service, he held numerous positions and was recognized with many awards. From 1998 to 1999, he served as vice president of Academic Affairs. From 1960 to 1994, he was chair of the geology department. His recognitions include CEU Teacher of the Year, the State of Utah Regents Award for Excellence in Teaching, and Price Jr. Chamber of Commerce’s Man of the Year. At the 2003 Founders’ Day, CEU awarded Burge the “Upon Their Shoulders Award” for his years of dedication to CEU. He currently serves as an emeritus faculty member.
Burge earned his master’s of science in economic geology and mineralogy from Brigham Young University in 1959. He completed his bachelor’s of science degree in physical geology at the University of Southern California in 1956. He has published over 20 reports and professional papers, including Mapping of Uranium Deposits of the Colorado Plateau (1956) and New Dinosaur Discoveries in the Lower Cretaceous of Southeastern Utah (1996). The very definition of a Renaissance man, among his many interests are translation of Egyptian hieroglyphics, competitive western shooting, and primitive archery. The Guinness Book of World Records for his primitive archery distance shooting. Burge also played a major role in the establishment of the CEU Prehistoric Museum, which today boasts one of the largest collections of new dinosaur bones in the world. He credits the community, college and museum staff with the museum’s success, stating that it was truly a team effort. He served as museum curator since its establishment in 1961, as museum director from 1989 to 2001, and finished as emeritus curator in 2003.
Several honors marked his efforts as the museum’s curator and director, including the Utah State Division of History award for Outstanding Teacher and the Governor’s 2000 Medal for Science and Technology. He received the Antiquities Award for Museum Service in 1992, a twin of the Antiquities Award for Outstanding Archaeological or Paleontological Research Preservation in Utah he received in 1986. During his tenure as director of the Prehistoric Museum, he discovered and identified various species of dinosaurs, including the Utah Raptor and the Gastonia Burgei, which aptly carries his name.
Rachel Ellen Jenson is the daughter of Kathleen Jenson and the late Curt Jenson of Price. She was born in Price where she lived all of her life. Jenson attended Carbon High School and was a member of the varsity cheerleader squad and graduated in 2002 with high honors.
Jenson has been dancing since the age of 4 and continued her training at CEU. The past two years, she maintained a 4.0 grade point average in addition to being a member of the Eagle Dancers and the Ballet Repertory Ensemble. She plans to continue her education at Weber State University where she plans to earn a bachelor’s degree in elementary education with a minor in dance.
Candice Norris is the daughter of Carlyle and Margie Knudsen of South Jordan and is married to Jason Norris of Price. Originally from South Jordan, Utah, she graduated from Copper Hills High School in 2002 with a 4.0 grade point average.
Norris participated in volleyball and basketball at Copper Hills as well as serving as a class officer her senior year. While at CEU, she played basketball and maintained a 4.0 grade point average.
Norris and her husband plan to finish school at the University of Utah, where she plans to earn her education degree in history. After graduation she plans to teach and coach.