Merrimack College Announces Annual LEAD Award Winners

Merrimack College announces its annual LEAD award winners for 2020 celebrating outstanding students and student organizations.

Senior Awards

Rafferty Award

Senior Jackie Ireland (Women’s Soccer)
Senior Charlie Bertrand (Men’s Lacrosse) 

The Rafferty Award is given to one male and one female student-athlete who will exhaust his/her athletic eligibility by the end of the academic year (or graduate early). He/she has played in at least 50% of their games and is a significant contributor on the playing field. These student-athletes excel in the classroom and in the community. They must have a 3.3 GPA cumulative GPA or higher. The Rafferty Award is considered the top honor that a student-athlete can achieve at Merrimack College.

Allen J. Ash Award

Amanda Gallagher and Haley Mallett

Awarded to the senior(s) who has made an outstanding contribution to the senior class.

William J. Murray, O.S.A., Award

Arpi Parseghian & Emily Robinson

Presented to seniors who have approximately a 2.5 G.P.A. or better, and are role models for others who through their lifestyles emulate Fr. Murray’s concern, open-mindedness and compassion for others and make conscious attempts at social and spiritual growth.

Joseph P. Daley Award

Alexis Miedico & Aaron Cochran

Awarded in recognition of outstanding character and unheralded service to the Merrimack community.

Travis G. Kong Student Leadership Award

Taylor Galusha, Rosie Sperduto, Alyssa Torres, Tiana Lawrence, Anna Gilboard, Morgan Proko and Joshua Rizzo

Awarded in recognition of outstanding service to the Merrimack College community.

LEAD Awards

SWAG Award

Austin Scholars

The SWAG Award is given to students or student organizations that create a positive impact on the Merrimack community. These students or organizations are examples of what it means to be a Merrimack Warrior.

Outstanding Academic Student Organization of the Year

The Beacon

The Outstanding Academic Student Organization of the Year award is given to the academic affiliated student organization that demonstrates a commitment to their academics and a dedication to developing their skills through their co-curricular activities.

Outstanding Arts Organization of the Year


The Outstanding Arts Organization of the Year award goes to a student run arts organization that has contributed significantly to the cultural climate of the college and the surrounding community.

Outstanding Cultural Organization of the Year

Unity House Council

The Outstanding Cultural Organization of the Year recognizes a student organization that has grown awareness of diversity and inclusion on campus through programming, lectures, or informational events.

Student Organization of the Year

Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE)

The Student Organization of the Year Award is presented to the student organization that strives to improve in the areas of programming, recruitment, retention, administrative tasks and co-sponsorship with other organizations and offices on campus throughout the year. This organization sets the bar for all other student organizations.

Cultural Program of the Year

Interfaith Alliance Diwali Event

This student-run program educated and fostered open conversations about diversity and inclusion on the Merrimack College campus. The topics focused on bringing awareness to a variety of cultures on campus. The event was well planned, advertised, and executed.

Campus Wide Program of the Year

Active Minds Suicide Prevention Walk

The Program of the Year Award is presented to the student run program that was successfully developed, promoted, and produced. This program should have a strong positive impact on the Merrimack Community.

Outstanding Class Leader Awards

2021 – Samantha Frey
2022 – Sarah Wilson
2023 – Nick Barber

The Outstanding Class Leader Awards honor one student from each class year. This year we celebrate the classes of 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023. The award is presented to students who stand out among their peers as someone who exemplifies enthusiasm and pride in Merrimack College, through their attitude, behavior, and involvement. These students encourage Merrimack spirit and pride among their peers, maintain high standards of learning, are involved in a variety of facets of Campus Life and serve as role models to other students.

The Blue & Gold Award

Atoms Family

The Blue & Gold Award is presented to the student or student organization that sponsored an outstanding program or event which raised social & or cultural awareness among the Merrimack Community and generated not only awareness but also conversation on campus. Programs nominated should have initiated mutual respect and understanding of all people and be conscious of the difficulties and hardships of society while touching upon the mission and values of the college.

Donna Swartwout Unsung Hero Award

PJ Malafronte

The Donna Swartwout Unsung Hero Award is given to a student leader on campus who is actively involved in student organizations and various offices on campus. This student is not necessarily an executive board member of any organization. They support campus events, and encourage others to support and participate in campus events and initiatives.



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