2011 Alumni Awards

2011 Young Alumnus 
of the Year:
Aaron Watson ('00)

Young Alumnus of the Year

The Alumni Advisory Board was grinnin' after pickin' rising Texas music star Aaron Watson ('00) as the 2011 Young Alumnus of the Year. In the decade since graduating from ACU, Watson has become not only a popular musician but an impressive businessman, building his independent company, Big Label Records, along with a growing audience of fans.

Watson will be honored in an on-campus ceremony on Tuesday, April 26, at 6 p.m. at the Hunter Welcome Center. Alumni and the general public are invited. Registration details are coming soon.

The Alumni Advisory Board has also selected the 2011 Outstanding Alumnus of the Year and Distinguished Alumni Citation recipients. We will announce those honorees on this page in the coming weeks.

Distinguished Alumni Citations  

Distinguished Alumni Citations recognize distinctive personal and professional achievement meriting honor and praise from peers and colleagues. The Alumni Association solicits nominations from fellow alumni, parents, faculty, staff and friends of the university. The ACU Alumni Advisory Board selects an alumnus from each academic college and one at-large, and the recipients are awarded during the same calendar year. ACU Today magazine will highlight the following alumni this fall:

College of Arts and Sciences  

Steven Mansfield (’88)
New York Times bestselling author, popular speaker and founder
The Mansfield Group


Elise Smith Mitchell (’83)
President and CEO
Mitchell Communications Group

College of Biblical Studies

Dr. Kathy Pulley (’80)
Professor of religious studies
Missouri State University



College of Business Administration

Michael Willoughby (’86)
Founder and President
PFSweb, Inc.



College of Education and Human Services


Russell Pennington (’89)
Church planter and missionary

Featured Video
There's a NEW CAT in town! Check out the new graphic identity of ACU athletics and read more about the logo selection process.