Vogt, Noble Honored as Stan State Alumni of the Year

Ron Noble with President Sheley
Ron Noble & President Sheley

Stanislaus State continues to impact the region in an overwhelmingly positive way, as more than 55,000 graduates make their mark daily in all aspects of Central Valley life.

In recognition of that impact, as well as to inspire the newest graduates to speak proudly about their University, Stan State has renewed its Alumni of the Year awards. At commencement ceremonies May 26-27, Hilmar Cheese CFO Kevin Vogt (2002, master of business administration), and Stan State Dean of Students Ron Noble (1977, B.A., Psychology) were honored for their successes and ongoing commitment to the University.

When Vogt, a Turlock High and Westmont College graduate, was attending Stan State, he found an intriguing quality not only in his educational experience but also among his fellow students.

“While I was doing my master’s, I met five or six Hilmar Cheese employees who were students at Stanislaus at the time,” said Vogt, the Alumnus of the Year for Professional Achievement. “I remember thinking that if that’s the kind of people Hilmar Cheese is hiring, maybe that’s a place I should look. It was clearly a point of connection for me.”

Vogt joined Hilmar Cheese shortly after receiving his MBA, and in 2012 became the CFO of the company, which has grown to more than 1,400 employees and reports gross annual revenues in excess of $2 billion.

This year’s commencement was a special moment for Vogt, his wife Emily and children Kyndal and Kameron, both of whom attend Westmont College. He didn’t have the time to devote to attending his own master’s commencement ceremony because of his responsibilities at Emanuel Medical Center. Not only did he speak at the May 26 ceremony, but his family joined him.

Noble, on the other hand, is a very familiar face at commencement ceremonies, since he has served as master of ceremonies for several years. His hard work for Stanislaus State since first stepping foot on campus 42 years ago, always performed with enthusiasm, makes him the 2016 Alumnus of the Year for Service and Commitment to the Community.

From his office in the Mary Stuart Rogers Educational Services Gateway Building and also from memory, Ron Noble has witnessed how much Stanislaus State has grown and continues to grow.

“That’s one of the nice things about being here for so long,” Noble said, gazing out his office window. “The pond was always there, and during early Warrior Days there were boat races. The Performing Arts complex always was there and the library was half-there, but the amphitheater was not there. The trees and the foliage obviously have grown.”

Noble, a Los Angeles native, arrived in 1974 as a freshman transfer student from Cal State Los Angeles, graduated with a degree in psychology in 1977 and decided to stay around. He worked on campus for a year before earning his master’s at San Diego State, returning to Stanislaus to take a position in the financial aid office.

Noble became director of the Educational Opportunity Program in 1983 and later was named a senior director before becoming the Dean of Students and Associate Vice President for Student Affairs eight years ago. He will be joined at commencement by his wife Lynne, a 1978 Stan State graduate, and daughter Roslynn, who earned her bachelor’s and master’s from Stanislaus State.

In addition to watching the campus develop and mature, Noble has observed and been a part of the University’s flourishing presence within the region — something, he says, that became a priority under former president Marvalene Hughes.

“She was the first I remember who really talked about our place in the region,” Noble said. “It was obvious we were providing a lot of the teachers in the region, and Dr. Hughes wanted to know how else we could serve the region, for other businesses. People who grow up here and go to school here tend to stay here, and that’s an idea that has stayed with me.”