2019 School of Social Work Alumni Award Recipients
Outstanding New Social Worker Award
This award is for recent graduates of the BSW or MSW program who have demonstrated extraordinary accomplishments in his/her first five years of post-degree practice.
Cynthia Degnan, LSW
Cynthia graduated from the School of Social Work and immediately began working as a therapist at Rape Advocacy, Counseling, and Education Services in May 2017. Since then, she has become Counseling Coordinator, working to build and shape a program that supports survivors in healing from trauma.
Community Achievement Award
This award is for a School of Social Work graduate who has made a significant contribution to his/her agency or community as a leader. Three recipients were chosen this year.
Juliet earned her BSW in 1993 and MSW in 1995. Currently, Juliet is the Director of Development at Piven Theatre Workshop, raising money to fund arts programming with incarcerated women, youth and adults with disabilities, children in military families, and under resourced youth. In her spare time, she teaches writing classes at StorystudioChicago. Her passion for story is deeply connected to her commitment to social justice. She worked as a social worker in the adoption and foster care arena for fifteen years and founded a non-profit organization in Evanston called COPE (Caring Outreach by Parents in Evanston) in 2014. Most of her writing provides the reader with avenues for dealing with grief and loss.
Stephanie received her BSW in 1993, MSW in 2001, and Ed.M. from the University of Illinois and has her school administrative certification. Stephanie was named Executive Director of Crisis Nursery in June 2008, bringing 15 years of leadership experience with her from Champaign Unit 4 and the Champaign-Ford Regional Office of Education. Stephanie is the Head Cheerleading Coach at the University of Illinois where she will celebrate her 25th anniversary in September 2019. Stephanie’s husband, Rush Record is the Executive Director of CASA. They have lived in Champaign for the past 30 years and have two girls, Kennedy and Delaney.
Meghan Rewers graduated from the University of Illinois with her Master’s in Social work in 2010. During her time at the U of I, Meghan was introduced to the Crisis Nursery in Urbana, which inspired her to create a Nursery in her hometown, Effingham, IL. In March of 2017, Crisis Nursery of Effingham County officially opened their doors with Meghan serving as their Executive Director. Meghan currently resides in Effingham with her husband, Kael and 4 year old son, James.