Rising Star Award

Created in 2012, the purpose of the Rising Star Award is to recognize individuals working in the advancement professions of Alumni Relations, Communications and Marketing, and Philanthropy for a maximum of seven years demonstrating their potential for leadership within their chosen area of advancement, as well as an enthusiasm and commitment to their profession and their professional organization, CASE.

  • Individuals nominated must have been in the advancement profession for 3-7 years and have served as a volunteer for CASE for a minimum of two years.
  • The nominee must have demonstrated a consistently high level of professional achievement and strong leadership qualities.
  • The nominee should be actively involved in the advancement of CASE with new ideas which can make a positive impact as well as a commitment to participate in areas of responsibility with CASE in the future.

2019 Rising Star Award: Sami Zoss

Sami Zoss, a South Dakota native, has been involved with our field and CASE since the 2016 joint conference in Chicago.

Sami made a community in the CASE network early and has enjoyed the opportunity to get involved and simultaneously learn about all this field has to offer. Her passion for the impact and dedication to the work earned her an ASAP Outstanding Advisor award in her first year. She is dedicated to learning each and every day and strives to empower others to do the same. In her short time with CASE, Sami's service has ranged from the welcome wagon at registration, serving on multiple conference committees, and judging for the CASE ASAP District Awards program.

She takes on ‘other duties as assigned' with humor and grace and thoroughly appreciates the opportunities CASE and the CASE community continually afford her.

Rising Star Stipend
Thompson Farms (Bowman, ND) provides $1,000 award to the CASE District VI Rising Star Award recipient which is to be used for travel, tuition or other expenses associated with attending a CASE professional development program. The stipend must be used within one fiscal year of award (example: awarded January 2019 - the stipend must be used by June 30, 2020.)

Kevin J. Thompson
Kevin's work with CASE began in 1989 with the Student Alumni Association/Student Foundation Network (SAA/SF) and the Dickinson State University Student Ambassadors. His two-decade long involvement with CASE District VI included the conference planning committee, chairing the District Conference, serving on the District Board of Directors, and two terms as District Chair. He retired as CEO of the Dickinson State University Foundation in 2015. Kevin was honored by his peers with the CASE VI Distinguished Service Award and the Virginia Carter Smith Award in 2015. Thompson Farms is a family owned and run farm and ranch in Bowman, North Dakota.

Past Recipients:

2018 - No award recipient
2017 - Morgan Bossman, University of Jamestown
2016 - Aaron Rouse, University of Nebraska Foundation
2015 - Stephanie Maier, Director of Programs and Student Engagement, North Dakota State University Development Foundation and Alumni Association
2014 - Mark Versen, Assistant Director of Off-Campus Programs, Colorado College
2013 - Elizabeth Kraemer, Director of Alumni Programs, UNO Alumni Association