The School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences honors the achievements and contributions of its alumni through the Hall of Alumni Excellence. Recipients join the IAS Circle of Recognition, a collective of alumni, students, faculty, and partners who have notable impact on our campus, region, and world.
The Hall of Alumni Excellence recognizes alumni at varying stages of career who are established or emerging leaders in their fields, policy changing public servants, and/or devoted and inspiring mentors. They are extraordinary alumni who embody IAS’s Mission, Values, and Goals and demonstrate equity and inclusion in their work and lives.
Call for Nominations!
Do you know an alum who exemplifies the mission and values of IAS? Review the awards criteria and submit nominations.
Deadline: February 28
Hall of Alumni Excellence
Jacob Allen (Society, Ethics & Human Behavior ‘12) is a social entrepreneur, education junkie, and the Co-Founder and CEO of pilotED Schools, an emerging social identity-centered charter school network building exceptional elementary schools while seeking to change state and federal level education systems for students living in poverty.
Prior to pilotED, Allen found success as a statewide Youth President with the NAACP of Wisconsin, as a curriculum developer at the University of Washington, as a Teach For America–Chicago corps member, and as a director for an education policy advocacy group in Washington State.
Allen has been named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list and has received fellowships from Echoing Green, The Schusterman Foundation, Teach For America, The Mind Trust, NewSchools Venture Fund, and Camelback Ventures. His work has been featured in numerous publications including Forbes Magazine, Essence Magazine, USA Today, NBC Universal, and PBS. Allen also holds a Graduate Business Certificate from University of Illinois and is a candidate for his Masters in Psychology & Liberal Studies (ALM) at Harvard University.
Ray Corona (Society, Ethics & Human Behavior ’13) is an undocuqueer advocate who has called Seattle home since age nine. Ray’s community and professional work have focused on providing access and building bridges among diverse communities, including leadership development for youth, creating culturally relevant college preparation programs, organizing undocumented youth and families and building coalitions to craft community solutions for issues affecting marginalized communities.
Corona is co-founder of the Washington Dream Coalition, a network of undocumented students and young professionals addressing inequities and obstacles faced by undocumented immigrants in Washington State. He was the first undocumented person to be appointed to the City of Seattle LGBTQ Commission where he served a two-year term. He also received the 2019 Emerging Leader Pride Award from Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan. Corona is the community relations manager for UnitedHealth Group and the executive director and founder of Somos Seattle, an organization for LGBTQ Latinx folks that builds community, shares resources, and foster spaces for learning and growth.
EJ Juárez (M.A. in Cultural Studies ’13) is responsible for advancing Group Health Foundation’s public policy agenda to improve health equity in Washington. Juárez has spent the past decade as an electoral organizer and strategist, trainer, and policy analyst with deep roots across the Northwest. He has worked with Progressive Majority to help elect candidates to office, Win/Win Network to increase people of color’s representation in government decision-making, and Amplify to increase ethnic representation in local governance structures. Juárez has also helped build innovative partnerships and address inequities through his leadership roles at the Seattle Public Library and Solid Ground. He is a former shop steward with OPEIU Local 8 and organizer with SEIU1199NW.
Juárez currently serves as first vice chair on King County’s Elections Oversight Committee. Previously, he served on the boards of the Washington Low Income Housing Alliance, Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct and the School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences at UW Bothell.
Courtney Normand (M.A. in Policy Studies ’08) serves as the Washington State Director for Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii. As the State Director, Normand directs field, communications, policy, and electoral efforts to promote, protect, and advance access to sexual health, education, and reproductive rights in Washington. She has successfully led Planned Parenthood’s efforts to pass proactive legislation such as the Reproductive Parity Act, 12 months of birth control, Confidentiality in Insurance Communications, and Washington’s new Comprehensive Sex Education law while defending against federal attacks on the Affordable Care Act and Planned Parenthood.
Normand serves on the steering committee of Our Votes Count, a coalition of progressive organizations working to engage new and low-propensity voters in elections to secure the margin of victory in state legislative races. In 2012 she was honored with a Campaign Heroines Award from the National Women’s Political Caucus of Washington.
Normand holds a B.A. in Psychology and Minor in Women Studies from the University of Washington. Her graduate research on low-income single mothers, welfare reform, and child-care subsidies was published in the UW Bothell Policy Journal.
Kat Sweet (Society, Ethics & Human Behavior ’11) is the founder, coach, and CEO of the mountain bike program, Sweetlines, whose mission is to build confidence, create an inclusive community, and promote stewardship through educational mountain biking programs that empower people of all genders.
Sweet produces events that mesh coaching with competition—such as the Sugar Showdown—and spends countless hours building and restoring mountain bike trails. Prior to Sweetlines, she was the Youth Program Manager for Cascade Bicycle Club and Founder and Director of Trips for Kids Seattle, a cycling development program for underrepresented youth.
Sweet is also a former professional downhill mountain bike racer, X-Games ski competitor, brand ambassador, and motivational speaker. She has produced and starred in the movies, The Sisterhood of Shred and If She Can Do It, was a guest rider in the movie Pedal Driven, and has been featured in numerous articles in Bike Magazine, Decline, Freehub, Wide Open Mag UK, ESPN Brazil, Momentum, NW Cyclist, and Dirt Rag.