Joyce Davis Pulley earns Wintermote Award

Posted on Jul 10, 2018 in Alumni News and News

Joyce Davis Pulley faced a big challenge when she joined the Sacramento Jayhawks: a small group of alumni far away from Lawrence.

Her hard work connecting KU graduates and fans in the area paid off. As a result, the KU Alumni Association is proud to present her with the 2018 Dick Wintermote Volunteer of the Year Award.

Pulley, c’77, moved to Sacramento in 1997 and has organized watch parties and other alumni events for Jayhawks since 1999.

Nick Kallail, assistant vice president of alumni and network programs, is impressed with Pulley’s efforts.

“Sacramento checks in with just under 600 alumni within 25 miles, but always compares favorably in event attendance and network Facebook activity with much larger groups,” said Kallail.

“The great connections within this network and love for KU was shared with Jayhawk Nation at the KU/Stanford Basketball game played in Sacramento this past December and is a testimony to the great volunteer work Joyce has done for the KU Alumni Association.”

Kallail will present the award to Pulley at a summer happy hour July 11.

About the award

The award is named for Dick Wintermote, c’51, who served as the executive director of the Association from 1963 to 1983. His legacy represents the importance of building a strong volunteer network, the need for a dues-paying membership program and establishing the KU Alumni Association as one of the premier associations of graduates in the country.

—Ryan Camenzind

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Mills to be celebrated at Native American Heritage Night

Posted on Jan 15, 2015 in Alumni News and News

Billy Mills | Kansas Alumni magazine |
KU alumnus and Olympic Gold medalist Billy Mills will be honored at Native American Heritage Night with the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday, Jan. 21. The Kings, featuring former KU standout Ben McLemore, take on the Brooklyn Nets, the home of Jayhawk legend Paul Pierce.

Special group pricing is available for the game: $25 for upper-level tickets and $54 for lower-level seats, a discount of up to 40% off regular prices. The first 300 fans will receive a Kings T-shirt.

Sacramento Jayhawks, purchase your tickets online at and use the passcode Kings.

Mills was the subject of the most recent cover story in Kansas Alumni magazine. Read an excerpt of the feature, written by Steven Hill, below.

A 26-year-old Marine Corps lieutenant and three-time All-American climbed aboard a shuttle bus in the Olympic Village in Tokyo, Japan. He was a relative unknown at the games, a dark-horse distance runner whom most track-and-field pundits gave zero chance of winning the day’s event, the 10,000-meter run. So when he sat down beside a young athlete from Poland, it was no surprise that she’d never heard of him.

“She asked me what event I was in, and I told her,” he recalls. “And then she asks, ‘Who do you think will win?’”

Fifty years later he can laugh—a deep, generous laugh that says, can you believe it?—but at the time the question unnerved him. “You don’t ask people that,” he says, grinning. As he sat in silence, the young woman pressed on, thrilled by the potential drama of the 6.2-mile race. Would it be Australian Ron Clarke, the world record holder, she wondered breathlessly, or Russian Pyotr Bolotnikov, the defending champion?

“Now she’s giving me a choice,” he says, “a choice that doesn’t include me!”

So he smiled his easy smile and said, very quietly, “I’m going to win.”


“And who are you?”

“Billy Mills.”

Running on cinders beneath the National Stadium lights later that rain-darkened afternoon of Oct. 14, 1964, the young Marine came from third place to blow past Clarke and Mohamed Gammoudi of Tunisia in the final 30 meters; Dick Bank, color commentator on the CBS race telecast, cut off play-by-play man Bud Palmer, who seemed oblivious to the unfolding spectacle, and screamed “Look at Mills! Look at Mills!” The runner felt the tape break across his chest and thrust both hands high before dropping them to cover his face, stunned that he’d just pulled off what many still consider one of the greatest Olympic upsets ever. When a race official grabbed him and asked, “Who are you?” Mills felt a moment of panic, fearing he’d miscounted. “Do I still have a lap to go?” he asked.

“No, no,” came the response. “Finished. Olympic champion.”

Read the full story online.

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Sacramento Jayhawks meet former KU basketball stars

Posted on Apr 17, 2014 in Alumni News and News

With so many former KU basketball stars playing professional ball, NBA games are popular events for alumni chapter members to attend.

Jayhawks in the Sacramento area attended KU Night with the Sacramento Kings last night. Kent Hohlfeld, j’95, sent us this recap of the game:

Approximately 25-30 KU alumni and fans showed up for the Kings season finale against the Phoenix Suns. Former Jayhawk players Ben McLemore of the Kings and Suns players Marcus and Markieff Morris signed pre-game autographs for the fans.

During the game, McLemore had a career-high 31 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists, while Marcus Morris had 22 points and 6 rebounds. Markieff Morris had 15 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists as the Morris twins’ Suns team beat McLemore and the Kings 104-99.

Another cool thing? The Sacramento Kings’ official Twitter account tweeted this short Vine video of McLemore meeting fans before the game:

Kent also sent us a few pictures he took during the meet-and-greet before the game. Check out the collage below– and does anyone else think it’s strange to see all three players wearing purple?

Collage of photos from Sacramento Kings vs. Phoenix Suns

If you’re in the Sacramento area, join the Sac Jayhawks Facebook group. All KU alumni, fans and friends are welcome!

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Northern California Jayhawks enjoy a night of basketball

Posted on Jan 24, 2013 in Alumni News and News

KU alumni in northern California had the opportunity to see former KU men’s basketball players Thomas Robinson and Markieff Morris play against each other last night at KU Night with the Kings, an event arranged by the KU Alumni Association.

According to alumnus Erik Niemann, a’95, Kings rookie Robinson and Suns second-year forward Morris got to spend a lot of time on the court together. In fact, the game summary lists their minutes played as 25:51 and 25:52 minutes respectively— a one-second difference in playing time!

The alumni group watched pregame warmups and got to take photos with Morris. After the game, Robinson did a Q&A session with the Jayhawk fans in attendance.

In the end, Morris scored ten points, Robinson scored twelve and the Phoenix Suns won 106-96, though KU fans and alumni everywhere would surely agree that Jayhawks won, no matter the official outcome of the game.

Click here to read an article in today’s Sacramento Bee that mentioned the KU alumni gathering.

Photo courtesy of Joyce Pulley Photo courtesy of Erik Niemann

Thanks to alumni attendees Joyce Pulley, c’77, for the photo on the left, and Erik Niemann, a’95, for the photo on the right.

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