News and Events
Pepperdine University and the Graduate School of Education and Psychology Select Waves of Service Award Recipients
Pepperdine University and the Graduate School of Education and Psychology have selected David Brinkman (MBA '02) and Earnestine Thomas-Robertson (BA '69, MPA '73, EdD '03), respectively, as the annual Waves of Service Award recipients.
On Saturday, Oct. 15, Brinkman will be honored with the second annual Pepperdine University Waves of Service Award, which includes a $5,000 gift to Desert AIDS Project (DAP), where he serves as chief executive officer and president.
In choosing Brinkman as this year's honoree, Greg Porter, director of Waves of Service, explains, "David was one of seven finalists from a list of 300 nominations, which are made by the Alumni Affairs offices of each of the five schools of Pepperdine University. The selection committee was particularly thrilled with the story of what he has accomplished for the health and wellness of those affected by AIDS."
Brinkman has led the organization through a period of unprecedented expansion, increasing the number of clients and volunteers, diversity and volume of services, number of staff, and size of the budget. During Brinkman's tenure, DAP has expanded its service provision to three new cities, opened a HIV-specialty dental clinic, launched innovative housing solutions, dedicated a community center as a resource hub for health education and combating stigma, and established an endowment to fund future operations.
Brinkman received a Master of Business Administration degree from the Graziadio School of Business and Management in 2002. Joining DAP in August 2006, he provides administrative and fiscal oversight of all agency programs and services, as well as leadership in strategic planning and community collaboration.
Thomas-Robertson, an alumnus of George Pepperdine College, Pepperdine's School of Professional Studies, and the Graduate School of Education and Psychology, has been selected as the second annual recipient of the Graduate School of Education and Psychology Waves of Service Award. The Waves of Service office will present Thomas-Robertson with the award at the Friday, Oct. 21, GSEP Celebration of Excellence Dinner.
"Thomas-Robertson's Pepperdine University bachelors, masters, and doctoral degrees, and even her dissertation, show her early and clear realization of her purpose to globalize college education," comments Porter. "Each of the dozen organizations who have benefited from Dr. Thomas-Robertson's volunteer service are, in complementary ways, serving the same purpose. Her innovative leadership as a community college administrator has resulted in astounding accomplishments toward making a college education more accessible."
Thomas-Robertson is the president of the Los Angeles-Lusaka Sister City Committee, vice president of business relations for Born Ready Industries, Inc., and dean emeritus of Los Angeles Southwest College. Her dedication to education and civic leadership has benefited both local and global communities and is the basis for her nomination and selection.
As a leader of the L.A.-Lusaka Sister City Committee, she recognized the need for women entrepreneurs in Zambia, Africa, and initiated programs to provide micro loans and fund business ventures that has enabled them to either start a viable business or improve an existing one. Under her direction, the organization has donated and delivered medical equipment and pharmaceutical supplies to hospitals in Lusaka, Zambia, and medical, self-help, and classroom textbooks to Evelyn Hone College in the same region.
Among her global development pursuits, Thomas-Robertson has been committed to local educational initiatives, empowering and teaching her students the importance of community involvement and participatory government. She has conceived and implemented the Strategies for the Development of the African American Manchild Conference, held for over 15 years on community college campuses throughout Los Angeles County, which brought business, industry, education, medical, political, and motivational leaders together for one day to interact with members of the community. Her implementation of International Day at Los Angeles Southwest College afforded students and members of the community the opportunity to experience cultures from across the globe through food, music, dance, and history.
Three additional Waves of Service Awards will be selected throughout the year, including the Faculty/Staff Waves of Service Award, the Second Annual George Pepperdine and Seaver College Waves of Service Award, and the Third Annual Graziadio School of Business and Management Waves of Service Award.
The Waves of Service movement celebrates, supports, and connects Pepperdine alumni committed to volunteerism and careers of service worldwide. Developed by the Alumni Leadership Council at the encouragement of President Benton, Waves of Service began to flow in 2009 with the unwritten motto, "serve where you are." Today, Pepperdine graduates are fulfilling Mr. Pepperdine's founding vision around the globe.
To learn more about Waves of Service, call (310) 506-4464 or visit the Waves of Service Web site.