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Alumni Achievements, Service Honored at 2016 Evening of Stars

The NC State Alumni Association recognized three Humanities and Social Sciences graduates at its annual Evening of Stars gala on Oct. 27. Ambassador Gentry Smith (political science ’83) received the 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award for the College of Humanities and Social Sciences; Harold Pettigrew (political science ’02) received the 2016 Outstanding Young Alumnus Award; and Christopher Hondros (English ’93) received the 2016 Posthumous Meritorious Service Award. Photo credit: NC State Alumni Association. Learn more »

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The NC State Alumni Association recently recognized three Humanities and Social Sciences graduates for outstanding achievements and service in their careers, communities and beyond. 

At its annual Evening of Stars gala on Oct. 27, the Alumni Association honored the following Humanities and Social Sciences alumni:

  • Gentry Smith at the 2016 Evening of Stars gala. Photo credit: NC State Alumni Association.

    Gentry Smith at the 2016 Evening of Stars gala. Photo credit: NC State Alumni Association.

    Ambassador Gentry Smith (political science ’83) received the 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award for the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. Smith, a native of Weldon, North Carolina, serves as the director of the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Foreign Missions. His duties include ensuring that foreign diplomats comply with guidelines governing diplomatic privileges and communities granted by the U.S. government; improving the treatment of U.S. missions and their personnel abroad; and providing service to the foreign diplomatic and consular community in the United States regarding taxes, customs, property and motor vehicles. Learn more about Smith and his path to the Department of State. 
  • Harold Pettigrew at the 2016 Evening of Stars gala. Photo credit: NC State Alumni Association.

    Harold Pettigrew at the 2016 Evening of Stars gala. Photo credit: NC State Alumni Association.

    Harold Pettigrew (political science ’02) received the 2016 Outstanding Young Alumnus Award. A past NC State student body president and Caldwell Fellow, Pettigrew now serves as the executive director of the Washington (D.C.) Area Community Investment Fund. The organization provides low-cost financing and technical assistance to small businesses, affordable housing developers and community organizations. Pettigrew has built an impressive resume in economic development, with more than 15 years of experience in entrepreneurship and small-business development, venture capital investment, transportation and transit, workforce development and public-sector management. Other places he’s worked include the D.C. Department of Small and Local Business Development, the D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, the D.C. Department of Transportation, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and the New York City Department of Small Business Services. 
  • Chris Hondros.

    Chris Hondros.

    Christopher Hondros (English ’93) received the 2016 Posthumous Meritorious Service Award. Hondros was one of the best conflict photographers of his generation, having covered practically every major world conflict of his adult life. Beginning with the war in Kosovo in 1999, Hondros served as witness to more than a decade of strife before he was killed in combat in Libya in April 2011. Hondros was a staff photographer for Getty Images News. After studying English literature at NC State and conducting his graduate work in photojournalism at Ohio University, Hondros moved to New York to concentrate on international reporting. He covered assignments in Kosovo, Angola, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Afghanistan, Kashmir, the West Bank, Iraq and Liberia. He received dozens of awards, including honors from World Press Photo in Amsterdam, the National Pictures of the Year Competition, the Visa Pour L’Image in France and both the John Faber Award and Robert Capa Gold Medal from the Overseas Press Club in New York. Hondros was a two-time finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in spot news photography. Read more about Hondros, his life and career.

Editor’s Note: Award biographies compiled by the NC State Alumni Association.