The Kevin DeVaan Memorial Award

Kevin DeVaan ’78 lived by the mantra, “it’s about effort and attitude.” DeVaan’s influential work, infectious spirit and exceptional example of service to alma mater set him apart as an Alumni Association Board volunteer until his unexpected passing in 2012.

The Kevin DeVaan Award is presented annually in June to an Alumni Association Board Volunteer whose efforts and attitude inspire others to do more for Saint John’s University.

Alumni Association Board members whose service to alma mater most embodies Kevin's mantra are selected by the Alumni Association Board Office of the President to receive the award.

Photo of Bill Olson '91 Bill Olson '91 received the award in 2021. Bill is the owner and consultant at Five-O Corp, Inc. His service on the Alumni Association Board has included leadership of the Resource Development Committee, where Bill and his committee are key partners with the success of the SJU Student Fund that provides student scholarships to 98% of SJU students. Bill is someone who shows up and engages, and he is a dedicated volunteer.

Scott Hennis ’02 received the award in 2020. Scott is owner of Curt’s Special Recipe. His service on the Alumni Association Board has included leadership of the Student Preparation Committee that connects alumni with current students for career exploration and internships. Scott is a dedicated volunteer who does what he says he will do and shows up. He has also generous donated Curt’s Special Recipe bloody mary mix for the annual Reunion celebration.

David Moe '94

David Moe ’94 received the award in 2019. David  is Director of Corporate Financial Planning and Analysis at The Toro Company. His service on the Alumni Association Board has included leadership roles on The Benedictine Way Committee and Alumni Connections Committee. David is a dedicated and visionary volunteer.

Photo of Rick Speckmann

Rick Speckmann ’72 received the award in 2018. Rick is Senior Business Advisor at MRA – the Management Association. He has served on the Alumni Association Board for several years, most recently on the Resource Development Committee. He has been a champion for Reunion weekend and Rick finds creative ways to encourage alumni to support student scholarships through the Student Fund.

Joe Housman ’04 received the award in 2017. Joe is Director of Tax at Hays Companies. He has served on the Alumni Association Board for many years, and been an active class leader for the class of 2004. Joe has also been a leader of the Student Preparation committee that works on initiatives to connect alumni with current students for career exploration purposes.

Andrew Spaanem ’06

Andrew Spaanem ’06 received the award in 2016. Andrew is a wealth management advisor and field director at Northwestern Mutual. He served on the Alumni Association Board for many years, and was vice president of The Benedictine Way committee.

Brian Kelly '99 received the award in 2015. Kelly is Wealth Management Advisor at Northwestern Mutual. He has served on the Alumni Association Board for many years, and been an active class leader for the class of 1999. Brian's leadership of the Resource Development Committee has been instrumental, and he is constantly present and involved with alumni gatherings and programs.

Aaron Smith '92 received the award in 2014. Smith is  co-founder and creative director at Smitty's Workshop. He has served as a leader on the Alumni Association Board for many years. Additionally, he played an instrumental role in the creation of Heritage Hall and the new Alumni Lounge in Sexton Commons. Aaron has also served as board secretary, keeping the board and past board members informed and engaged.

Dick Howard '72 received the inaugural award in 2013. Howard is the President of Fairview Foundation, and has served as a leader on the Board for many years. Additionally, he co-founded the Board's Benedictine Way Committee, which focuses on keeping alumni connected with Saint John's through Benedictine Values-based programming.