Bicentennial Medalists 2016

About the Award

Established in 1993 on the occasion of the college’s 200th anniversary, Bicentennial Medals honor members of the Williams community for distinguished achievement in any field of endeavor. The college awarded 23 Bicentennial Medals in 1993 and has added five to seven awardees in each year since.

The Bicentennial Medals recognize alumni for “significant achievement in any field of endeavor.” We hope that seniors will find the recipients’ career paths and their accomplishments inspiring as they begin to think of life after college.

This Year’s Medalists

  • Eliot Coleman Jr. ’61 
    A pioneer in the organic farming movement whose innovative tool design and cold-weather growing techniques have enabled farmers throughout the Northeast to be productive year round.
  • Bruce Beehler ’74
    Naturalist and conservationist, who has studied birds and their forest habitats—in an effort to preserve them—in the Asia-Pacific region and North America.
  • Jeff Speck ’85
    A city planner and urban designer who, through writing, lectures and built work, advocates internationally for more walkable cities.
  • Sharon Burke ’88
    An international security and energy security specialist whose work in the U.S. government and with New America examines security, prosperity and natural resources.
  • Maxine Burkett ’98  
    Professor of law at the University of Hawaii, whose scholarship and activism focus on international climate justice, policy change and adaptation for island peoples and the most vulnerable.