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Dr. Kerry Byrnes Memorial

Dr. Kerry Byrnes Memorial Alumni Scholarship Award

This $1000 Award is presented in memory of an "underappreciated" 1963 Okemos grad who went on to earn his PhD and top career awards in his field.  Dr. Byrnes was a man of drive and compassion that bettered the lives of millions through his work with US Aid for International Development. Fifty-five years after OHS graduation, Kerry came back to address Mrs. Duffield’s class and to receive the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Okemos Education Foundation.  In retirement, Kerry Byrnes authored numerous books and articles on “Okemos Subjects” covering past teachers, coaches and OHS/MSU Basketball.  Kerry was a driving force to reinvigorate the Okemos Alumni Association and is listed in the Okemos Alumni Hall of Fame.

The Dr. Kerry Byrnes Memorial Alumni Scholarship Award was created by members of the Okemos Alumni Association and the Byrnes family.  The honor of selecting a student was given to Mrs. Whitney Duffield.

2024 - The Award is shared by two exceptional students, Laxmi Vidap & Anushri Welipitiya

"My name is Laxmi Vidap and I will be attending Michigan State University in the fall of 2024. I will be majoring in computer science and minor in economics, my future plans would be to get my MBA in economics at the University of Michigan. I appreciate receiving this honorable award, thank you! "


"My name is Anushri Welipitiya and I will be attending the University of California, Irvine majoring in chemistry with a minor in economics this fall. In college, I will be continuing my service and humanitarian work with Chemists Without Borders. After my undergraduate years, I plan to attend law school, where I hope to integrate both my science and social science background to pursue a law degree. I am honored to be receiving this award and am forever thankful for my years in Okemos!"



If your class or family would like to sponsor a Memorial Scholarship, contact us and we will set it up!  Rod Ellis