The three winners of this year's Fred Ellsworth Medallions all have worked to increase cultural and ethnic awareness at Kansas University.
R.A. Edwards, Cordell D. Meeks Jr. and James E. Seaver will receive medallions the highest honor given by the KU Alumni Association at a dinner Sept. 20 at the Adams Alumni Center. KU officials announced the winners Thursday.
Edwards, who graduated from KU in 1967 and 1973, has served as an alumni volunteer for the Office of Admissions and Scholarships. He also is a board member of Natural Ties Student Organization, a national group founded in 1988 at KU to support friendships among students and people with disabilities.
Edwards, who is president and chief executive officer at First National Bank of Hutchinson, also has worked with Jayhawks for Higher Education, the lobbying arm of the Alumni Association, and with the KU Athletic Corp. board.
Edwards is a trustee and member of the executive committee for the KU Endowment Association.
Meeks, who received his law degree from KU in 1967, is a state district court judge in Kansas City, Kan. He has served on the advisory board for minority development at the Graduate School.
Meeks also has served on the advisory board for KU's Edwards Campus in Overland Park and is a past president of the School of Law's Law Society Board of Governors.
He served on the Campaign Kansas National Council and the Greater University Fund advisory board in the early 1990s for the Endowment Association. He also received the Distinguished Service Citation from the Alumni Association in 1995 and the Distinguished Alumnus Citation from the School of Law in 2001.
Seaver, who served 25 years as director of KU's Western civilization program, also has been host of "Opera is My Hobby" on KANU radio for 50 years. He has donated more than 24,000 opera records to KU's archive of recorded sound.
Seaver also taught in the history department and led students on international art and architecture tours in the study abroad program.
He is author of "The Persecution of Jews in the Roman Empire," and during his career he received two Fulbright grants.
The Fred Ellsworth Medallion has been given annually since 1975 to people who have exhibited "extraordinary service to KU" and is named for the association's longtime executive secretary, a 1922 KU graduate who retired in 1963 after 39 years.
Winners are chosen by representatives from the chancellor's office and the KU alumni, athletics and endowment associations.