Presented each year at Homecoming, this award recognizes a young alumna/us for significant achievement and contribution within her/his chosen field and community. Eligible nominees should reflect positively on Colby-Sawyer while providing an example of leadership and inspiration to young alumni. Alumni of the last 15 years are eligible for this award.
Rebecca Harned received her bachelor’s degree in biology from Colby-Sawyer in 2003. Following graduation, she was hired as a program coordinator at the Center for Sustainable Development in Costa Rica. While she worked, she earned a master’s degree at the United Nations mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica. Following a move to Washington, D.C., Rebecca went to work for FEMA, beginning as an executive officer and then a senior advisor for the National Integration Center. She went onto a career with the National Alliance for Public Safety GIS Foundation, where today she serves as the National and Federal Director.
Rebecca is a loyal supporter of her college. She attends alumni events as often as possible and is a donor to the Colby-Sawyer Fund. Since moving to North Sutton, much closer to her alma mater, she’s become even more involved. In the last year, she has joined the President’s Alumni Advisory Council and she also made a generous gift to establish the Rebecca D. Harned ’03 Scholarship Fund. Rebecca remembered how the financial aid and scholarship support she received at Colby-Sawyer made a profound difference for her, and now she’s returned the favor by establishing a fund that will provide for student scholarships for years to come.
In 2012 the college wrote an article about Rebecca. She was quoted as saying, “Take the time to seek your passion and explore everything you can do to make a difference in the world. Success is different for everyone, but for me it's doing as much as I can do to make positive change in a myriad of ways in a day, every day.”