Photo: Bruce Gilbert
On March 7, Lions roared louder than the thundersnow to congratulate the five honorees at the College’s annual John Jay Awards Dinner. Despite the harsh nor’easter that encapsulated the night, alumni, students and friends gathered at Cipriani 42nd Street to celebrate the recipients’ exceptional professional achievements. Established in 1978, the John Jay Awards Dinner raises money for the John Jay National Scholars Program, which provides financial aid, individualized programming and extracurricular opportunities for outstanding first-years.
The 2018 honorees were
Sara Just CC’88, PBS NewsHour executive producer and WETA SVP
Julie Jacobs Menin CC’89, commissioner, NYC Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment
Robert P. Rooney CC’89, CEO of Morgan Stanley International Plc., Head of Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and Head of Technology
Ron Simons CC’82, BUS’89, four-time Tony Award-winning producer and actor
Dean James J. Valentini and President Lee C. Bollinger welcomed attendees, and current John Jay scholar Maysa Baladi ’18 spoke on behalf of the scholars. A double major in political science and Hispanic studies, Baladi reiterated the importance of the program, which allowed her to do independent research in Madrid through summer fellowships.
Erik Feig CC’92, co-president of Lionsgate Motion Picture Group, kicked off the awards ceremony, during which all five honorees spoke about their Columbia College experience and their successes today. The night, which raised more than $1.1 million, culminated with an acapella performance of “Sans Souci” and “Roar, Lion, Roar” by the Columbia Kingsmen.