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According to Western Illinois University alumna Courtney James (left), who worked with Yeast (right) on Big Pink Volleyball (BPV), WIU's annual breast cancer fundraising volleyball tourney, Yeast had a significant impact on her while she was a graduate student working on the BPV student organization team. James earned her master's degree from Western's college student personnel program in 2010 and now works as the assistant director of campus activities at the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO).
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Yeast Honored with 2011 IIRSA Service Award

December 1, 2011

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MACOMB, IL – Judy Yeast, associate director of Campus Recreation at Western Illinois University, was honored recently for her service and contributions to the recreation sports field by the Illinois Intramural-Recreational Sports Association. Yeast, who has been at Western for 30 years, was named the IIRSA Service Award recipient for 2011.

The IIRSA service award, according to the IIRSA website, is awarded to one member each year who has exemplified outstanding service and achievements in the profession to the state association. According to the annual IIRSA Service Award nomination form, one nominator stated: "[Judy] has always displayed a high degree of integrity, responsibility and passion for recreation. She is definitely a leader rather than a follower. [She] is simply one of the most passionate people I have ever known [in regard to] recreation and the development and education of students."

In addition to her duties as associate director of Western's Campus Recreation, Yeast is actively involved in the Western community. She helped start Big Pink Volleyball (BPV), an annual breast cancer awareness and fundraiser tournament. As of 2011, the BPV tourney, which started in 2002, has raised approximately $83,000 for the Susan G. Komen for a Cure Foundation (Peoria affiliate) and for mammogram and other cancer screenings at McDonough District Hospital in Macomb.

According to WIU alumna Courtney James, who worked with Yeast on BPV, Yeast had a significant impact on her while she was a student in Western's college student personnel master's program.

"Judy is a dedicated professional, compassionate mentor, passionate philanthropist and committed member of the Western Community," James said. "Through the work that she has done within her position, she has helped develop student leaders into effective alumni. She has positively influenced countless individuals by helping them find their passions and has taught them the value of a good work ethic. Judy has truly left her mark not only on Western Illinois University, but also the individuals who have had the opportunity to work with her."

In 2010, Yeast received the national Horace Moody Award, presented by the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA), for her contributions to student development. In 2004, she received the University Administrative Community Service Award at WIU. Yeast was also an appointed member to Illinois Governor Jim Edgar's Council on Health and Physical Education in 1994.

Yeast earned an M.S. in sport management from Western Illinois University in 1981 and a B.S. from Quincy (College) University (Quincy, IL).

Learn more about the IIRSA via its website at
. For more information, contact Yeast at (309) 298-1670 or

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