Alumni Association Celebrates the Best and the Brightest

Posted: April 20, 2006 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Lynn Burke and Colleen Kearney Rich

Each spring, the George Mason University Alumni Association recognizes and honors outstanding alumni, students and faculty members for their achievements and contributions to the university. This year’s celebration was held on Wednesday, April 19.

D. Jean Wu
D. Jean Wu

This year’s Alumna of the Year is D. Jean Wu, MS Information Systems ’87. Actively involved with Mason since 1998, she serves on the university’s Board of Visitors, is secretary of the Board of Trustees of the George Mason University Foundation and is a member of the university’s Diversity Advisory Board.

Wu is the prinicpal of The Tilden Group, a managment consulting firm. She is also the founder of Integrated Management Services, Inc. an information technology company, which was acquired by Anteon in 2004. She had previously served as a manager with Irving Burton Associates, a management consulting firm, and a staff assistant to the deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Wu came to the United States from Taiwan at age 14. She earned her undergraduate degree in marketing at the University of Virginia and attended business executive programs at the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth College.

In addition, Wu has been a long-standing supporter of charitable and educational organizations in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, including the Close Up Foundation, the Virginia Hospital Center, Heads Up, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington and the Best Friends Foundation. Her past honors include the Immigrant Achievement Award from the American Immigration Law Foundation and the Virginia Small Business Person of the Year Award from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

James Laychak
James Laychak

James Laychak, BS Accounting ’83 and BS Decision Science ’83, received this year’s Alumni Service Award. Laychak is an associate partner with Accenture and has been with the company for more than 20 years, spending two years in the accounting and audit practice of what was then Arthur Andersen & Company and the remaining 18 years working in consulting. He is based in the company’s Washington, D.C., Metro Office, working as a program manager and change architect for business transformation programs and serving as deputy program manager for the Customer Relationship Management Program.

In 1995, he helped establish the Andersen Consulting Scholarship in Mason’s School of Management and in 2003 personally created the Patricia Holloran Laychak Memorial Scholarship Endowment named for his mother.

His extensive list of volunteer activities at Mason includes serving as chair of the 1995–96 Annual Fund Committee, cochair of the 1996–97 Annual Fund Committee and chair of the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution Partnership Team from 1997 until 2000.

The Alumni Association greatly benefited from his leadership while he served as vice president of service from 1997 to 2000, president from 2000 to 2002 and past president from 2002 to 2004. He also served on the Alumni Campaign Steering Committee from 2002 through 2005. He was a member of the Century Club (now the Business Alliance of George Mason University) Board of Directors.

Laychak’s volunteerism extends beyond Mason’s campuses. His work as president and chair of the board of directors of the Pentagon Memorial Fund honors his brother, David, an Army civilian who worked in the Pentagon and was killed in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack.

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