Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce

Westfield State University recognizes two dignified graduates with Alumni Association Awards

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 10, 2018
CONTACT: Troy Watkins,, 413.572.5523


Westfield—Westfield State University recently honored two alumni with its 2018 Alumni Association Awards. Sheridan “Bing” Carey ’65 received the 2018 Distinguished Alumnus Award and Cheryl Bassett ’88 is the University’s 2018 Alumna of the Year Award recipient.

Sheridan “Bing” Carey ’65 received the 2018 Distinguished Alumnus Award on Friday, December 7 at the University’s annual alumni holiday reception at MGM Springfield. Carey earned an M.S. in labor studies from UMass Amherst and spent 15 years as a lobbyist for the Massachusetts Teachers’ Association, focusing on collective bargaining and was instrumental in helping to pass the first collective bargaining act for state employees, Chapter 150E. He later led successful efforts to organize the state’s 15 community colleges, 10 state colleges and UMass Amherst and Boston.

Carey joined the Westfield State Foundation in 2001 and has held a variety of positions, including chair and vice president. For many years he also chaired its Investment Committee, producing superior investment results. In addition, Bing has endowed the Carey Family Scholarship for undergraduates in the Mathematics Department at Westfield State.

The Distinguished Alumnus/a Award is bestowed upon Westfield State graduates who have distinguished themselves in professional and/or community service.

PHOTO: Westfield State University Alumni Association President Scott Gowen '84 presents Sheridan "Bing" Carey '65 with the 2018 Alumnus of the Year award.

Cheryl Bassett ’88 was presented the 2018 Alumna of the Year Award on Thursday, Nov. 8 in Scanlon Banquet Hall prior to a public presentation of her extensive research and work in human trafficking. Bassett is the director of human trafficking training initiatives at McCain Institute for International Leadership, where she creates, organizes, and implements accomplishment-oriented capacity building programs to combat human trafficking.

With 28 years of investigative experience with the federal government, Bassett has received awards from the director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement as well as the U.S Attorney’s Offices in Washington and Boston for her successful investigative work against human smuggling. She earned a B.A. in criminal justice from Westfield State and was inducted into the University’s Criminal Justice Hall of Fame in 2017.

The Alumnus/a of the Year Award is given annually to a graduate who has made a significant contribution toward personal, professional, community or philanthropic achievements over the course of a year to two-year period.

PHOTO: Westfield State University presents Cheryl Bassett '88 witht he 2018 Alumna of the Year Award. (L-R: University President Ramon Torrecilha, Ph.D.; Cheryl Bassett '88 and Alumni Association member Joshua Clark '15

Founded in 1839 by Horace Mann, Westfield State University is an education leader committed to providing every generation of students with a learning experience built on its founding principle as the first public co-educational college in America to offer an education without barrier to race, gender or economic status. This spirit of innovative thinking and social responsibility is forged in a curriculum of liberal arts and professional studies that creates a vital community of engaged learners who become confident, capable individuals prepared for leadership and service to society. For more information on Westfield State University, visit us at, follow us on Twitter at, or on Facebook at


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