The Scripps alumnae community is made up of so many remarkably dedicated, involved, and accomplished individuals who embody the great strength and resilience of the collective community. Each year, we celebrate the vitality of the Scripps College Alumnae Association by honoring three alums—distinguished alumna of the year, outstanding recent alumna, and volunteer of the year—and their positive impact in their own communities and beyond.
DISTINGUISHED ALUMNA OF THE YEAR:
Constance de la Vega ’75
First presented in 1978, the Scripps College Distinguished Alumna Award was established to celebrate the notable achievements of Scripps alumnae and to focus attention on Scripps’ role in the education of women. The award is presented each year during Reunion Weekend. Read about past recipients here.
Constance “Connie” de la Vega was born and raised in Mexico. Because her mother was American, she grew up speaking and writing both Spanish and English and with dual nationality in the United States and Mexico. This led to her interest in international issues, guiding her to major in international relations while at Scripps. After graduation, Connie went to the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, where she focused her studies on international human rights under the guidance of Frank C. Newman (who later became a justice on the California Supreme Court). Professor Newman introduced her to the UN Commission on Human Rights in Geneva, Switzerland, during the summer after her first year of law school. She later spent a semester at the International Commission of Jurists in Geneva, where she worked on international human rights issues. After law school, she worked for 10 years at the Legal Aid Society of Alameda County, where she focused on housing issues. Connie went on to teach at the University of San Francisco School of Law, where she initially directed the Civil Litigation Clinic, handling housing and civil rights cases. One of the latter resulted in a published decision, Orozco v. County of Yolo. Another case resulted in a published decision by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on behalf of an inmate on death row, N. I. Sequoyah v. United States. She eventually started teaching international human rights and teaching in and directing the master’s in law program. An avid sports lover, Connie played volleyball and basketball for Pomona College while at Scripps and continued her involvement in organized sports during law school and beyond.
OUTSTANDING RECENT ALUMNA:
Alison Omens ’06
The Outstanding Recent Alumna Award was established in 1992 to honor an alumna still in the early stages of her life’s work but who nonetheless has “used her Scripps education in the quest for personal excellence; demonstrated a willingness to seek out challenges and take risks; and has maintained loyalty to the Scripps community.” The award is presented each year during Reunion Weekend. Read about past recipients here.
Alison Omens is the chief strategy officer at JUST Capital, a nonprofit focused on creating a more just, equitable form of capitalism. She is responsible for setting and implementing strategy to achieve mission impact for the organization. Her work includes overseeing programs, revenue, partnerships, development, and strategic engagement with companies, investors, foundations, and nonprofits. She has orchestrated program collaborations with the Aspen Institute, Harvard Business School, PayPal, PolicyLink, and other organizations.
Alison was most recently an advisor for private-sector engagement to U.S. Secretary of Labor Tom Perez, where she managed the inclusive capitalism strategy for the secretary and with the Obama White House. She was also involved with the department’s future-of-work efforts and its environmental, social, and corporate governance investing guidance. Previously, she was vice president at Outreach Strategies, an environmental strategic communications firm, and the director of media outreach for the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO).
Alison is on the board of directors of JobsFirstNYC, which expands opportunities for out-of-work and out-of-school youth. She also sits on the advisory council of NextGen Chamber of Commerce, a business organization for millennial business owners, and LitWorld, which promotes youth literacy through storytelling. Additionally, she is the co-founder of Smash Squad, a network for women focused on doing well by doing good.
Alison received her Master of Public Administration from Harvard Kennedy School and BA from Scripps College in politics. At Scripps, she was president of Scripps Associated Students and of Democrats of The Claremont Colleges.
VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR:
Maddie Ripley ’14
Scripps College recognizes and appreciates the importance of the ongoing commitment, dedication, and leadership of its alumnae. The Volunteer of the Year award recognizes an alumna for her commitment, dedication, leadership, and exceptional volunteer service on behalf of Scripps College. This award will be given at Convocation during Reunion Weekend. Read about past recipients here.
Madeline “Maddie” Ripley graduated from Scripps College in 2014 with a degree in economics and a minor in music. While at Scripps, Maddie worked as a resident advisor (in Toll and Browning) and developed her interest in investment management and business as a leader in the Student Investment Fund and as co-treasurer of Scripps Associated Students.
Since graduating from Scripps, Maddie stays connected to the College by interviewing prospective students, serving as a facilitator for the Linda Davis Taylor Financial Literacy Program, leading the Young Alum Cabinet of the Alumnae Leadership Council, and facilitating the “Power and Money” panel discussion for Scripps magazine. As a member of the Young Alum Cabinet, Maddie encourages fellow Scripps grads to share their ideas for enhancing the alumnae experience.
Maddie lives in New York City, where she works as a consultant in McKinsey & Company’s Operations Practice. Prior to joining McKinsey, Maddie earned her MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management, where she studied supply-chain management and manufacturing design. She has also worked in supply-chain strategy at Square in San Francisco, product management at Dapper Labs in Vancouver, and investment consulting at Cambridge Associates in San Francisco.