Distinguished Alumnus Awards

2007 Education Distinguished Alumnus Award Recipient

Graciela Italiano-Thomas

Graciela Italiano-Thomas, Ed.D.

The 2007 Education Distinguished Alumnus, Dr. Graciela Italiano-Thomas, is the president and CEO of Thrive by Five Washington, a public-private partnership based in Seattle, Washington. Her charge as CEO is to ensure that every child in Washington is prepared for school and life by working to bring about an increase and availability of parent education and support, child care improvements, preschool quality and access, and other early learning opportunities.

She is known as a leading early-learning strategist and was selected to head Thrive by Five Washington in late 2006 after an exhaustive nationwide search. Announcing her appointment, Bill Gates, Sr., cochair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Thrive by Five Washington board of directors, was quoted as saying, “Momentum around early learning in Washington has never been so strong. Dr. Italiano-Thomas joins our efforts at a key time when our public and private sectors have joined together, united in the vision that investing in our state’s youngest residents is perhaps the best investment we can make.”

Prior to joining Thrive by Five, Italiano-Thomas served from 2004 to 2006 as CEO of Los Angeles Universal Preschool (LAUP), a public benefit corporation dedicated to providing universal preschool access for all four-year-olds in Los Angeles County. Before joining LAUP she was CEO of Centro de la Familia de Utah, a nonprofit organization based in Salt Lake City, Utah, which works to strengthen the Hispanic family by promoting self-sufficiency. She has also served as senior consultant to the National Head Start Bureau.

Among the many honors she has received are the National Education Association’s George I. Sanchez Human and Civil Rights Award for contributions made to the education of Latinos in the United States (2000), and the YWCA of Salt Lake City’s Award for Community Activism and Leadership (2004).

Italiano-Thomas has served on numerous boards of community organizations and is a member of several professional associations, including the National Education Association and the National Head Start Association. She was named to Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s Council of Education Advisors, sits on the Advisory Board of Pre-K Now, and was recently named to the Pew Charitable Trust’s Partnership for America’s Economic Success Advisory Board. She has served with distinction on the faculties of California Polytechnic University, Pomona, and at Weber State University in Utah.

Italiano-Thomas completed her doctor of education from Pepperdine in 1997.

2007 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus Award Recipient

Brad Hudson

Brad Hudson, Psy.D.

Dr. Bradley (Brad) Hudson is the Graduate School of Education and Psychology’s 2007 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus. Hudson has a lengthy list of professional involvements and achievements. As clinical director of mental health services at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) he leads a team of more than 50 mental health professionals and 30 interdisciplinary trainees.

Hudson has been in his current position since 1994, and has served as assistant professor of clinical pediatrics for the Keck USC School of Medicine since 1999, with a focus on development of psychology services, training programs, and clinical research at CHLA. He is the project director and principal investigator for a HRSA Bureau of Health Professions Graduate Psychology Education Grant focused on extending and enhancing the cross-cultural competency of intern psychologists.

The grant project, currently in its fifth year of funding, is aimed at providing a broad variety of training experiences to enhance the competency of training psychologists to serve Latino clients.

Hudson served as a bilingual school psychologist for the Los Angeles Unified School District from 1984 to 1986.

He was a psychology intern at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston from 1989 to 1990. He joined CHLA in 1990, serving until 1992 as a postdoctoral fellow for the divisions of hematology/oncology and general pediatrics. He then worked as staff psychologist for those divisions from 1992 to 1999, and as training director for CHLA’s psychology internship from 1994 to 2001.

He also serves as secretary/treasurer of the Southern Califor-nia Association of Psychology Training Programs and a grants committee member of the South Pasadena Educational Foundation. He has remained active with GSEP, serving on seven Pepperdine doctoral project committees so far. He was an adjunct faculty member for GSEP from 1994 to 2003, teaching courses in cross-cultural issues, psychological assessment, and normal development.

Hudson earned his Psy.D. from Pepperdine in 1990.

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