awards displayed at a ceremony

Award of Distinction

The College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CA&ES) at UC Davis is internationally renowned for its teaching, research and outreach. This is due to the collective effort of alumni, friends, faculty, staff and students.

Every year the college presents the Award of Distinction to honor individuals whose contributions and achievements have positively impacted our communities, advanced science and education or enhanced the college’s ability to serve California and the world.

There are six categories for the Award of Distinction:

  • Alumni of the Year
  • Early-Career Alumni of the Year
  • Distinguished Friend(s) of the College
  • Exceptional Staff Member
  • Exceptional Faculty Member
  • Exceptional Emeriti Faculty

The year’s ceremony celebrating award winners will be held on November 2, 2023 at the Activities and Recreation Center Ballroom. Please register to attend by October 27. 

2023 Award of Distinction Recipients:

Alumnus of the Year

James Finch '89

Early Career Alumni

Jeffrey Sparks '14

Distinguished Friend of the College

Tony Turkovich

Exceptional Faculty Award

Lynn Kimsey

Exceptional Staff Award

Lisa Nash Holmes


Click here to view the 2023 Award of Distinction Recipients.


We invite you to help us recognize deserving alumni, staff, faculty and friends of the college by submitting nominations for the 2023 Award of Distinction. Nominations are now open . The deadline for 2023 will be Friday, June 23.

Fill out a nomination form online


Submission Checklist

Complete the Award of Distinction nomination form

  1. Review the award criteria and provide:

Need help nominating? Contact Phil Schwartz.

NOTE: These awards are highly competitive. Please make every effort to keep the nomination confidential from your nominee.