The Spirit of Ability Award commemorates the empowering heritage of founders who saw beyond disabilities. They opened higher education to people whose disabilities were commonly perceived to preclude excellence. Awardees are contemporary leaders who continue this MSU tradition of creating vibrant environments that welcome, fortify, and compassionately challenge each person to reach their fullest ability.
To learn more about the spirit of ability of the RCPD and the promise that higher education brings for persons with disabilities, RSVP for our 52nd Anniversary Awards & Appreciation Reception.
The Spirit of Ability Award was created in honor of:
1934 founder of Tower Guard, an organization creating greater accessibility through service.
1971 founding Director of today’s RCPD. A dynamic leader and change agent with remarkable character, vision and leadership that transformed MSU.
Associate Provost, researcher, and administrative leader who vigorously advanced diversity and inclusion. Dr. Hamilton selected Judy Gentile as founding Director of RCPD, opening the door for persons with significant disabilities to pursue their dreams with an MSU education.
OPHS (now RCPD) Receptionist 1979-1985. Dorothy's life ended early in a tragic automobile accident but her spirit lives on as one who empowered students through a warm, welcoming and affirming presence that made MSU and the RCPD home for new and returning students alike.
An energetic professor and community organizer who dedicated his teaching, research and service to ensuring people with disabilities engaged fully, especially in areas related to recreation and physical activity.
(RCPD Ability Access Specialist 2015-2022) An enthusiastic leader who considered RCPD family as he built quality Spartan experiences. He applied his personal experience to foster ability through friendship, empathy, and shared insights.
In Caleb’s memory, the Spirit of Ability Award will continue the MSU tradition of creating vibrant environments that welcome, fortify, and compassionately challenge each person to reach their fullest ability.