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Five Inducted as Honorary Alumni

Designation recognizes devotion and service to William & Mary

June 2, 2023
By Claire De Lisle M.B.A. ’21

From left to right: John Cole Scott ’00, treasurer of the W&M Alumni Association (WMAA) Board of Directors; Christopher “Chris” Caracci HON ’23; Carole Kraemer HON ’23, P ’94; Lisa Roday HON ’23, P ’13, P ’14; John E. Littel HON ’23, P ’22; Janet McNulty Osborn ’85, vice president of the WMAA Board of Directors (not pictured: recipient Marianne Littel HON ’23, P ’22). Photo by Skip Rowland ’83

As part of this year’s Commencement celebrations, five outstanding individuals were inducted into the alumni community as honorary alumni. Christopher “Chris” Caracci, Carole Kraemer P ’94, John E. Littel P ’22 and Marianne Littel P ’22 and Lisa Roday P ’13, P ’14 were nominated by their peers and selected by the W&M Alumni Association (WMAA) Board of Directors for this important honor, which recognizes exceptional service, support, advocacy and commitment on behalf of William & Mary and its schools, departments, organizations and boards.

“There are few activities and events that affirm the role of the Alumni Association more succinctly than the induction of Honorary Alumni into our extended William & Mary family,” said Janet McNulty Osborn ’85, vice president of the WMAA Board of Directors, in her remarks at the May 11 ceremony at the Alumni House. “It is our most official and lasting way of saying thank you to those whose devotion to William & Mary is strong, regardless of their place of graduation.”

Christopher “Chris” Caracci HON ’23

William & Mary is committed to ensuring students have the tools they need to succeed professionally, not only in their first jobs but through every subsequent career move. Caracci lives that mission by sharing his expertise as an adjunct professor and executive partner at the Raymond A. Mason School of Business. He mentors undergraduate and graduate students and advises fellow faculty, sharing insights from his 30 years at The Walt Disney Co., his work in the health care field and his service in the Air Force. By introducing students to his network, he has facilitated internships and job offers.

Caracci and his husband, James Boswell ’86, generously support many areas of the university, including Swem’s Special Collections, a scholarship for out-of-state students, an award for an outstanding American studies major at Commencement, and a fellowship and study fund for students learning about the material culture of the early American South. They spearheaded the recreation of George Wythe’s library at the W&M Law School and contributed to the renaming of Morton Hall to Boswell in honor of John’s uncle John E. Boswell ’69, an alumnus and notable LGTBQ scholar. For their generous support of the newly renovated Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall, they will be recognized with a named space. They also have included William & Mary in their estate plans.

As a resident of Williamsburg, Caracci never misses an opportunity to attend a William & Mary event, whether that’s a Tribe Thursday with the Williamsburg-Peninsula network, a football game, Convocation or Charter Day.

Carole Kraemer HON ’23, P ’94

Kraemer has been part of the William & Mary community for more than 60 years, when she first came to campus to visit her then-boyfriend, Richard “Rich” Kraemer ’65, P ’94. Their love story became a lifelong commitment to each other and to William & Mary.

Her son, Richard Kraemer ’94, is also an alumnus, and her granddaughter, Kennon McAndrews ’26, is a Monroe Scholar and part of the St Andrews Joint Degree Programme.

Carole has been a key partner in nurturing her and Rich’s large network of W&M friends over six decades. Though the Kraemers live in Arizona, Carole is frequently on campus to attend events like Homecoming & Reunion Weekend and Charter Day, support Rich during his board service and attend board gatherings. Rich has played a leadership role for the Class of 1965, and Carole has organized reunions and hosted alumni and staff for events in their home and on campus. They frequently travel with alumni, including special trips with President Emeritus Tim Sullivan ’66, and Anne Klare Sullivan ’66, M.Ed. ’68, M.A. ’73, Ed.D. ’86.

Together, the Kraemers established a football scholarship and a business professorship, an endowment to support the prototyping studio in the Alan B. Miller Entrepreneurship Center, and a fund for study abroad in the British Isles. Their Kraemer Middle East Distinguished Scholar-In-Residence provides the opportunity for a scholar specializing in Islamic law and governance to share his or her expertise with the university community. In 2005, they were inducted into the James Blair Society, recognizing donors who have contributed $1 million or more to the university.

John Littel HON ’23, P ’22 and Marianne Littel HON ’23, P ’22

Leading a university through a presidential transition, a pandemic, strategic planning and a major campaign is no easy task — but John Littel, with his wife, Marianne, by his side, did it all with wisdom and grace.

John Littel joined the Board of Visitors in 2012 and was first elected to lead the board as rector in 2018. In 2020, he was reelected to a second two-year term, a testament to the respect and trust he earned from his fellow board members as a conscientious and thoughtful leader.

He served on the presidential search committee that chose W&M’s 28th president, Katherine A. Rowe, and then worked closely with her through the challenges of the pandemic. Marianne helped President Rowe feel at home by assisting her in the decoration of the President’s House.

John’s leadership was instrumental throughout the For the Bold campaign and as the university began the strategic planning process that would become Vision 2026. He is known as a team player who is not afraid to speak his mind and ask tough but productive questions. As a board member, he was always available to listen to and address the needs of the board, the General Assembly, faculty, staff and parents.

His private and public sector expertise have made him invaluable to the university. He continues his work in public service as Virginia’s secretary of health and human resources, but the Littels remain active in the William & Mary community. They have hosted the South Hampton Roads Yule Log ceremony each year at their house and are the parents of William & Mary graduate Clay Littel ’22. They have sponsored several One Tribe One Day challenges and given to the W&M Washington Center, Public Policy program, Parents Fund and more.

Lisa Roday HON ’23, P ’13, P ’14

Roday first discovered her love for William & Mary through her sons Harrison Roday ’13 and Ethan Roday ’14. As a member of the Board of Visitors, she found her own deep connection to the university and helped lead it through tumultuous times into a bright future.

She was appointed to the board in 2014 and reappointed for a second four-year term in 2018. She brought valuable perspectives from her career and as a parent, and was a fair-minded and tireless advocate for all students. She enthusiastically and capably served on almost every board committee, including as chair and vice chair of the Committee on the Student Experience. She was an insightful board liaison to the William & Mary Race Relations Implementation Team, a key university initiative that grapples with our complex history and works to strengthen diversity, inclusion and belonging.

As a member of the presidential search committee, she put in countless hours to help choose the university’s 28th president. She is a current member of the Council of Arts & Sciences and chairs the nominations and governance committee.

In 2014, Lisa and her husband, Leon, established the Roday Scholarship Endowment. They support the All In for campaign for W&M Athletics through the Lord Botetourt Affair auction to benefit athletics scholarships and Women in Action for women’s varsity sports. They’ve also supported international trips for the W&M Choir, initiatives for alumni through the W&M Alumni Association and more. This spring, they established a fund to support internships through the Charles Center, furthering the university’s Vision 2026 careers initiative. Lisa is a charter member of the Society of 1918, William & Mary’s giving society by women, for women, for William & Mary. She also serves on the 1693 Scholars board.

To learn more about this honor and nominate deserving individuals, please visit Nominations are due by Nov. 15, 2023.