2015 Moraine Valley Hall of Fame Inductees
DSC_3629_DenoMichael Deno, 1986
Upon completion of an Associate in Arts degree from Moraine Valley Community College, Michael Deno earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Illinois State University and his Juris Doctor from the John Marshall Law School. He is an assistant state’s attorney and serves as the supervisor of prosecutions for the 5th District Court in Bridgeview. Deno, who resides in Oak Forest, was the 2006 Distinguished Alumni Award recipient at Moraine Valley, and received a Certificate of Recognition from the Constance Morris House for his dedication and service to victims of domestic abuse. He has appeared as a guest speaker on local community awareness cable programs and is a member of a special committee to rewrite and recommend changes to the ethics code in Oak Forest.
Head_Alumni_FahyPatricia Fahy, 1979
Patricia Fahy serves as a member of the New York State Assembly with a long list of committees and service that focus on education. As a first-generation American and the first in her family to graduate from college, she is an outspoken advocate of increased college access and affordability, which led to her receiving the 2014 New York State School Board Association’s Freshman Legislator of the Year award. She also advocates for children as a member of the board of directors for the Boys and Girls Club of Albany, is a founding member of Albany PASS (People Advocating Small Schools), and a long-time mentor to at-risk and refugee children. In addition, Fahy has served as a consultant on education and workforce training issues for the Big Brothers Big Sisters.
DSC_3638_OBrienKelly O'Brien, 1989
Kelly O’Brien’s career has spanned the public and private sector, including service as a Palos Hills City alderman, a presidential appointment to the U.S. Department of Commerce as director of Public Affairs for Economic Development, and Deputy Director for the County Executives of America in Washington D.C. O’Brien is an attorney and current president and CEO of the Alliance for Regional Development and executive director of the Chicago Central Area Committee, responsible for convening leaders from government, academia and the private sector to identify initiatives to move forward the Tri-State Chicago Metropolitan area. O’Brien continues to volunteer her time in the community and received the International St. Vincent De Paul Vincentian Charism Award for public service.
Head_Alumni_PetersonWilliam Peterson, 1972
William Peterson, of Kissimmee, Florida, is the senior vice president at Strategic Government Resources based in Keller, Texas, where he serves as the primary technical expert for operational assessments and management consulting in the fields of fire, EMS and emergency management. Peterson was a regional administrator for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the international president of the Institution of Fire Engineers based in England. After earning an Associate in Applied Science degree in fire science at Moraine Valley, he received a bachelor’s degree in fire protection administration from Lewis University, and a master’s dual degree in public administration and human relations from Webster University. He also served as the fire chief in Plano, Texas, where the Emergency Operations Center is named for him, was the fire chief in Waukegan, fire marshal/investigator in Bolingbrook, and was an adjunct faculty member in the Fire Science Program at Moraine Valley. Peterson has received numerous awards for exemplary professional achievements, including Fire Chief of the Year.
Head_Alumni_QuadeVicki Quade, 1973
Vicki Quade is the owner of Nuns4Fun Entertainment, home to the international hit, “Late Nite Catechism,” the longest-running, one-woman show in off-Broadway history. She is creator of four additional religious comedies and a new line of bingo comedies. Quade, who lives in Chicago, has donated more than $3 million to the care of retired Catholic nuns. Her career also included being a writer at daily newspapers, national magazines and for many publications in Chicago, plus being a correspondent for Newsweek for 10 years. Vicki worked with WGN radio personalities to create a talk radio parody and has performed in numerous theatrical productions and comedy festivals.
Head_Alumni_RiphagenMargot Riphagen, 2001
Margot Riphagen is beginning a new job with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) where she will help unionize healthcare workers. Her most recent position was as southern director of Planned Parenthood of America in New Orleans. Riphagen went on to graduate from DePaul University, where she interned with the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium. Fluent in three languages, Riphagen has worked extensively with organizing unions across the country, as well as worked for the 2008 and 2012 Barack Obama presidential campaigns. She has been a volunteer for the Rape Victim Advocates hotline and is an active participant in the Women’s Rights movement.
Head_Alumni_ThorJerry Thor, 2007
After completing an associates degree from Moraine Valley Community College, Jerry Thor received his bachelor’s degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his master’s degree from Concordia University Irvine. A resident of Melbourne, Florida, he is the head men’s and women’s tennis coach at Eastern Florida State College at Melbourne. Prior to this position, he was the head tennis coach at Niagara University in Lewiston, New York, and at Seward County Community College in Liberal, Kansas, in addition to an assistant tennis coach at Moraine Valley, where he played for two years and received several post-season honors. Thor served as student trustee at Moraine Valley and was a student member of the Board of Higher Education in Illinois while a student at UIUC. A member of the U.S. Army Reserve, Thor also volunteers at local VFW branches.