Each year McPherson College recognizes the accomplishments of young alumni during the Honors Convocation at Homecoming. This year three alumni – Craig Henderson ‘91, Jon Paden ‘91, and Elizabeth Stover Lucore ‘02 –received Young Alumni Awards on October 1 in a ceremony at McPherson Stadium.
The purpose of the Young Alumni Award is to recognize the achievement and potential for accomplishment of the college’s young alumni. The award is given to alumni who are meeting significant challenges in pursuit of professional goals as well as involved in service to others and church, and who participate in alumni activities.
Craig Henderson, Fruita, Colorado, graduated in 1991 with a degree in history and earned his law degree in 1994 at Washburn University. He serves as the county court judge for the 21st Judicial District in Grand Junction, Colorado. He was admitted to the Kansas Bar in 1994 and worked as an attorney in Wichita, and in 1996 was admitted to the Colorado Bar and worked as an attorney in Denver. He has served as a deputy district attorney in Sterling, Hot Sulphur Springs, and Grand Junction, Colorado. He is a member of the Colorado County Court Judges Association and has served as a volunteer mock trial judge for Colorado Mesa University’s criminal law class.
He enjoys spending time outside of work with his family enjoying the arts and the outdoors. He is an avid reader and loves music, but his real hobby is long-distance running. He has finished two 50K ultra-marathons in Colorado and Utah, three marathons, seven half-marathons, and several other races of various distances.
Jon Paden, Little River, Kansas, graduated in 1991 with a Bachelor of Science degree and later received a master’s degree in educational administration and completed hours in a doctoral program at Kansas State University. He is currently starting his 26th year as principal at Windom Elementary School in the Little River School District. He started his career in education with USD 418 in McPherson as an elementary school teacher for first, second, and fifth grades.
He is an active community volunteer. In 2015, he was recognized as Little River Community Citizen of the Year. He has served on the USD 444 Recreation Commission promoting activities for youth and adults, coached youth sports in Little River and Sterling, Kansas, and was a youth group leader for several years. He served on the Little River City Council and currently serves on the Little River Community Foundation Board determining grant awards for the community. He also serves on the Mutual Telephone Company Board of Directors. He is active in his church serving on numerous committees and is a past member of the McPherson College alumni board.
Elizabeth Stover Lucore, DO, MPH, Monett, Missouri, graduated in 2002 with a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and biology. She received her Masters of Public Health and Doctor of Osteopathy degrees from Des Moines University in 2008. Dr. Lucore is currently chief of staff at Cox Monett Hospital and volunteers as the medical director of the Barry County Department of Health.
Along with her family practice clinic and call schedule delivering babies, she is also involved in several volunteer projects and leadership roles in her community. Most recently, she is working to help develop a biking and walking trail system accessible to hospital visitors, employees, and the community. She is the founder of the Alternative Gift Fair in Monett, which over the last seven years has raised more than $10,000 for local nonprofits organizations. She also helped bring a volunteer chaplaincy program to the hospital. She is active in her church and serves as board chair for Camp Colorado.
While a student at McPherson College, she ran cross country, participated in choir and band, and became a member of Alpha Psi Omega National Theatre Honor Society. Now, together with her husband and children, she enjoys playing, exploring, eating, and laughing.