January 6, 2022 - Northern Kentucky University announces the 2022 Alumni Awards recipients as Nathan Smith, Jakki Haussler, Tracy Schwegmann, H. McGuire (Mac) Riley, John Perpetou Baylosis Jose and Peg Adams. They will be honored at the Alumni Awards dinner on March 26, 2022 to kick off Homecoming Weekend at NKU.
“The recipients of the Alumni Awards have shown that they have deep passion for supporting our students and making a positive impact in the community,” NKU President Ashish Vaidya said. “The individuals prove that NKU is a university whose alumni, faculty and staff focus on giving our students success, both while in school and post-graduation.”
Nathan Smith (’94) is the recipient of the 2022 Outstanding Alumnus Award for enhancing the image of NKU through his successes and accomplishments. Smith is the co-founder and chief investment officer of Flagship Communities REIT. In October 2020, his company announced the formation of a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) along with an initial public offering on the Toronto Stock Exchange. The REIT has been formed to own and operate a portfolio of now 65 manufactured housing communities, comprising 11,328 lots located in Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana, Tennessee, Missouri, Arkansas and Illinois. Smith’s company is the largest manufactured housing company in Kentucky and among the largest in the Midwest. Flagship Communities is among the top 20 in the United States with over 160 employees and 66 communities throughout seven states. The company operates communities in several geographic regions and Smith is responsible for directing acquisitions, engineering and zoning of new developments and for all marketing, sales and public relations for the $584 million company. He has served as chairman of the Manufactured Housing Institute, a 915-member industry trade organization, and as president of the Kentucky Manufactured Housing Institute. In addition, Smith previously served on the board of directors for Safe Harbor Marinas, the world's largest owner and operator of marinas, and was a member of the Greater Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport Board. Smith was the former chairman of the Northern Kentucky University Board of Regents in 2015-16, former president of the Alumni Association, and is a member of the NKU Foundation Board of Directors. Smith was also involved at NKU as a student leader by serving in the Student Government Association as senator, and eventually president and the student regent before graduating. Smith graduated from NKU with a bachelor’s degree in political science.
Jakki Haussler (’88) is the recipient of the 2022 Outstanding Alumnus Award for enhancing the image of NKU through her successes and accomplishments. Haussler is the chairman of Opus Capital Management. She served as the co-founder, chairman and CEO of Opus Capital from 1996 to 2019. In this role, she provided executive oversight, corporate strategy and directed the marketing and client service areas, with a focus on institutional clients. Haussler is an attorney and CPA (inactive), with more than 39 years’ experience in public accounting, investment banking, venture capital and asset management. Prior to co-founding Opus Capital, Haussler was managing director of Capvest Venture Fund, LP; partner at Adena Ventures Fund, LP; managing director of an investment banking firm; manager of Blue Chip Venture Company; and mergers and acquisitions at Cincinnati Bell Inc. Haussler currently serves on the Board of Directors for Morgan Stanley Funds, Board of Directors for Service Corporation International and the Board of Directors for the Barnes Group, Inc. She is also a member of the Salmon P. Chase College of Law Board of Visitors and the Salmon P. Chase Center for Law and Entrepreneurship. In 2007 at NKU, she was awarded the Salmon P. Chase College of Law’s Professional Achievement Award, and in 2005, Haussler was named one of the YWCA Outstanding Career Women of Achievement. Haussler received her juris doctor degree from Salmon P. Chase College of Law and received her bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Cincinnati.
Tracy Schwegmann (’95) is the recipient of the 2022 Distinguished Service Award for contributing time, talent and effort enhancing the quality of life at NKU or to make her community a better place to live. Schwegmann serves as the director of marketing and property management at Jeffrey R. Anderson Real Estate. Since 2001, Schwegmann’s portfolio has grown, and responsibilities include overseeing management of The Banks project in Downtown Cincinnati. Locally, she has also overseen the successful opening of development projects including Crestview Hills Town Center and the various Rookwood properties. In Nov. 2021, Schwegmann was elected by voters to the position of Sycamore Township Trustee, where she will serve a four-year term starting Jan. 1, 2022. She is a former president of the NKU Alumni Board of Directors and is a current member of the NKU Foundation Board of Directors, serving on the Governance/Membership and Real Estate Committees. Schwegmann graduated from NKU with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and received her MBA degree from Xavier University.
H. McGuire (Mac) Riley (’86) is the recipient of the 2022 Distinguished Service Award for contributing time, talent and effort enhancing the quality of life at NKU or to make his community a better place to live. Riley currently serves as president of BAHR Associates, Inc., a boutique provider of signal intelligence services to the U.S. Intelligence Community, and CEO of United Building Services, Inc., a multi-faceted provider of commercial building services. Professionally, Riley is admitted to the Maryland Bar and the U.S. Supreme Court Bar, and early in his career specialized in commercial litigation with the Washington, D.C. office of Howrey & Simon. President George H.W. Bush appointed him as Special Counsel at the Department of the Air Force and as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army. For his service to these Departments he was awarded the Commander’s Public Service and Meritorious Civilian Service medals, respectively. Riley continues to serve the NKU community on the Salmon P. Chase College of Law Board of Visitors and NKU Foundation Board of Directors. Riley graduated class salutatorian with a juris doctor, magna cum laude and Order of the Curia from the Salmon P. Chase College of Law. During his time there, Riley was a Chase Scholar, associate editor of the Law Review, and on the National Moot Court Team. As an undergraduate, he attended Loyola College, earning a bachelor of arts degree, cum laude, and was a Presidential Scholar, Maryland Distinguished Scholar and inducted into the Alpha Sigma Nu, Beta Beta Beta and Phi Alpha Theta national honor societies.
John P. B. Jose (’15) is the recipient of the Outstanding Young Alumnus Award, which recognizes an alumnus who has graduated within the last 10 years who has contributed through service by enhancing the quality of life at NKU or his community and/or who have distinguished themselves through professional accomplishments. Jose currently serves as the national director of Asian Pacific American Engagement for the Republican National Committee. Jose’s main role is to engage with Asian communities, stakeholders and candidates across the country and to build a platform, infrastructure, support and to make sure Asian communities participate civically and turn out in elections and other community engagements. Jose was involved at NKU as a student leader by serving in the Student Government Association as senator, university improvements chair, and eventually president. Jose also served as a student regent before graduating in 2015. Instead of packing his bags for Washington D.C. as planned, Jose moved to Spain to teach English as a second language. After three years in Spain, Jose became active in the political scene, working for Sen. Mitch McConnell’s re-election campaign before moving to Washington D.C. to work on Capitol Hill for Congressman Brett Guthrie. Jose graduated from NKU with a bachelor’s degree in organizational leadership.
Peg Adams (’86) is the recipient of the 2022 Faculty/Staff Strongest Influence Award. Adams is the director of University Connect and Persist (UCAP) at Northern Kentucky University. Throughout her 30+ year career at NKU, Adams has contributed to the development and implementation of student success initiatives, serving on myriad committees and advisory boards. Adams has served in a variety of roles in numerous departments, including TRiO Student Support Services and Office of First-Year Programs. In addition, she is a veteran instructor of University 101: Orientation to College and Beyond and has taught introductory writing courses. As director of UCAP, Adams oversees a number of programs that address the academic, financial, and personal needs of students as they navigate their college experience, such as UCAP Textbook Lending at Steely Library, providing access codes for students with financial need, and supporting LIFT and Educational Diversity scholarship recipients. Over the years, Adams has received recognition for her work, including Academic Affairs Outstanding Staff Member Award, the Student Affairs Jane Meier Outstanding Service Award, Norse Advising Outstanding Partner Award, Friend of Advising, Outstanding University 101 instructor, Student Affairs Commitment to Excellence Award and Presidential Ambassador Flame Honoree. She is a proud alum of NKU, where she earned her bachelor’s degrees in english and psychology.
The Alumni Awards Dinner and Celebration event will take place at 6 p.m. on Saturday, March 26, 2022, at NKU’s Campus Recreation Center. Tickets to the annual Alumni Awards Dinner and Celebration include a cocktail reception, plated dinner, coffee bar, alumni gift, valet parking and a ticket voucher for the men's Homecoming basketball game on Saturday, Feb. 5, 2022. To purchase tickets, visit the Alumni Awards website.
About NKU: Founded in 1968, NKU is an entrepreneurial state university of over 16,000 students served by more than 2,000 faculty and staff on a thriving suburban campus nestled between Highland Heights, Kentucky and bustling downtown Cincinnati. We are a regionally engaged university committed to empowering our students to have fulfilling careers and meaningful lives. While we are one of the fastest-growing universities in Kentucky, our professors still know our students' names. For more information, visit nku.edu.