SUNY Cobleskill Honors Nine Outstanding Alumni

SUNY Cobleskill in conjunction with its Alumni Board and Athletic Department will honor nine outstanding alumni during its upcoming Homecoming celebration, slated for September 25 and 26, 2015. The Athletic Department will honor Michael Schrader (`99) for basketball, Kane Seamon (`14) for cross country and track & field, Peter Shaw (`78) for soccer, wrestling and baseball and Robert Taylor (`84) for golf. The Athletic Awards Dinner will start at 5:00pm on Friday, September 25th in Bouck Hall Ballroom; tickets are available for $45 per guest.

On Saturday, September 26th, five additional alums from diverse academic and professional backgrounds will be honored for their post-graduation achievements at the Alumni Awards Dinner.

Chef Robert Fasce ’87

The 2015-2016 Outstanding Alumnus Award recipient this year is Chef Robert Fasce (`87). Chef Fasce has had a storied culinary career working in some of the most revered restaurants and private clubs in North America. Currently, he is Executive Chef for the Genesee Valley Club, a private country club located in Rochester, New York that boasts a longstanding tradition of excellence in dining and catering. He also recently worked as Executive Chef for the Cherokee Town and Country Club in Atlanta, Georgia, which for more than a decade has been rated the number one private club in America. Chef Fasce was also a finalist in the search for a White House Chef under President
George W. Bush.

Bryan Haynes ’07

SUNY Cobleskill will honor Bryan Haynes II (’07) with its Young Alumnus Achievement Award. Mr. Haynes received his Associates of Applied Science from Community College of the Air Force, a Bachelors of Business Administration from Cobleskill in 2007 and a Masters of Public Administration from the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy at the University of Albany in 2009. Bryan recently joined the State of Maryland Treasurer’s Office as their Chief Information Officer and Director of Information Technology. Haynes is also an adjunct professor at Rockefeller College, teaching courses in cybersecurity. He most recently served as an associate at Booz Allen Hamilton, a leading provider of management consulting, technology, and engineering services to the U.S. government in defense, intelligence, and civil markets, and to major corporations, institutions, and not-for-profit organizations. Haynes is an active member of the NYANG as a Cyber Operations Officer assigned to the 222nd Command and Control Squadron.

Linda Elligott ’75

Our Distinguished Alumni Awardee this year from the School of Liberal Arts, Science and Business is Linda Elligott (`75). Linda received her Associates of Applied Science from SUNY Cobleskill in 1975 and went directly into the workforce as a water quality specialist. Mrs. Elligott later earned her Bachelors of Science and Master of Science from Syracuse University while working as Cornell University’s Arnot Forest Field Station as a wildlife biologist and natural resource specialist. Linda went on to work in Florida for many years and retired from the South Florida Water Management District in 2006.
Representing the School of Agriculture and Natural Resources, our Distinguished Alumni Awardee for 2015 is Mr. Scott Kelley (`85). Mr. Kelley received his Associates of Applied Science in Animal Science. He and his family own and operate Kelley’s Farm and Garden Center located adjacent to the College. Mr. Kelley is a great friend of his alma mater and has helped facilitate many agricultural events on our campus including the Annual Coby Classic Cattle Sale, the Spring Livestock Judging Clinic and Ag Week. Mr. Kelley and his family have been actively engaged in 4-H, FFA and the New York Junior Beef Producers Association; he is truly a superb alumni ambassador for the College. We recognize Mr. Kelley for his longstanding support of not only the College but our students.

Michael Kaphan ’15

Finally, this year’s Outstanding Student Alumni Award goes to Michael Kaphan (`15). Graduating this past spring with his Bachelors of Science in Agricultural Business Management, Michael excelled academically, maintaining a 3.75 GPA while owning and managing one of the most celebrated restaurants in the lower Hudson Valley. Michael came to SUNY Cobleskill in 2010 as a non-traditional student and during his first three semesters worked full-time as a chef and seafood buyer in NYC. From day one, he brought incredible insight and valuable background to classroom discussion.

In 2012, Michael had the opportunity to become a managing partner in a new restaurant in Westchester County (Purdy’s Farmer and the Fish) and took time off from school to build the business from scratch. Today, the restaurant is a beacon for the farm-to-table movement in NY State. Michael has received glowing reviews from the NY Times, has been featured in Esquire Magazine and the restaurant was recently named by Bloomberg Business Week as one of the top ten farm-to-table restaurants in the United States.


For more information about Homecoming 2015, including how to reserve tickets to the Alumni Awards Dinner, visit our “99 and Counting!” page here.