Scholarship America Dream Award:
2014-15 Selection Committee

Five highly respected education professionals joined Scholarship America’s President & CEO, Lauren Segal, to select the inaugural recipients of the Scholarship America Dream Award:

Muriel A. Howard
President, American Association of State Colleges and Universities
Dr. Muriel A. Howard was named president of AASCU in April 2009. She is the first African-American to lead one of the six presidentially based higher education associations in Washington, D.C. She is also AASCU’s first female president, and an advocate for public higher education at the national level. Her professional and scholarly interests include educational leadership, women and minorities in the academy and a long-standing personal commitment to public service. She has received six honorary degrees and numerous awards for her contributions to public higher education, her service to the community and her commitment to diversity.

Martha J. Kanter
Distinguished Visiting Professor/Senior Fellow, New York University & Former Under Secretary, U.S. Department of Education
Martha J. Kanter served as U.S. Under Secretary of Education from 2009 until December 2013. In this role, she oversaw policies, programs, and activities related to postsecondary education, adult and career-technical education, and federal student aid. Kanter and her team focused on improving college access, affordability, quality and completion, as part of President Obama's American Graduation Initiative. She also supervised six White House Initiatives on: Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders; Educational Excellence for Hispanics; Historically Black Colleges and Universities; American Indian and Alaska Native Education; Educational Excellence for African Americans and Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

Tina Lee
Managing Director, World Journal
Tina Lee joined the World Journal, North America’s largest Chinese-language daily newspaper, in 2001. She is also executive vice president of Cooper Investors, Inc., which develops, owns and operates commercial real estate in the U.S., Europe and Asia.In 2008, she was one of eight New Yorkers awarded the New York State Women of Excellence Award. Lee has volunteered extensively on behalf of students as a former member of the Scholarship America board of trustees, and as the founder and president of the Greater New York Chinese Community Dollars for Scholars.

Richard Montañez
Executive Vice President, PepsiCo North America
Richard Montañez took a nontraditional route to the executive suite of corporate America. Born in Mexico, Montañez started his American professional career as a janitor at Frito-Lay’s plant in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. That changed in 1976, when he had an idea for a new product: Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. He was able to get a meeting with the company CEO to pitch the idea, and nearly three decades later the line is a consistent bestseller. In addition to his work at PepsiCo, Montañez also teaches leadership to MBA students at a California state university.

Eloy Ortiz Oakley
President and Superintendent-President, Long Beach City College
Eloy Ortiz Oakley is best known throughout California and the nation for implementing innovative programs and policies that help students succeed in college. He strongly believes that California's emerging economies demand a highly educated workforce, and that the state's 112 community colleges play a pivotal role in moving California forward. Under Oakley's leadership since 2007, the Long Beach Community College District has received numerous awards for its efforts to improve student completion rates, and for teaching small business owners throughout the greater Los Angeles area how to grow and succeed.

Lauren A. Segal
President and CEO, Scholarship America
Scholarship America welcomed Lauren Segal as its President & CEO in April 2010. She came to Scholarship America with 30 years of nonprofit sector experience, most notably as president and chief executive officer of Greater Twin Cities (MN) United Way, the second largest organization of its kind in the country. Since joining Scholarship America, Segal has led the organization's long-range strategic planning, establishing a goal of helping 750,000 students complete college with minimal debt by 2025. She has also been instrumental in the modernization of our flagship Dollars for Scholars program, the acquisition of ACT’s Scholarship Resource Services division and the development of the Dream Award.

Support The Dream Award

Dream Award Scholarship America’s Dream Award received its initial funding thanks to the support of Katie Couric; since the program was created, hundreds of supporters have also stepped forward to help establish this innovative new scholarship vision. Now, we invite you to join the mission!

Success By Degrees

Scholarship America's blog, Success By Degrees, covers items of interest to parents, volunteers, educators and anyone interested in the big issues surrounding education, financial aid and postsecondary success. You'll find policy announcements, news releases and more, every week!

2014 Annual Report

In 2014, more than 125,000 students received over $236 million in scholarship support and assistance from Scholarship America – a record-breaking year for the nation's largest provider of private scholarships.


Visit our 2014 annual report to learn more about our successes, our students and our future.

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