University of Central Florida Board of Trustees Chair Rick Walsh and Trustee Judy Albertson will be honored for their humanitarian efforts and outstanding involvement in the Central Florida community by the Jewish National Fund of Orlando.
As recipients of Tree of Life awards, Walsh and Albertson will be recognized for their achievements and innovations. David Albertson, a businessman and passionate university supporter who is Judy Albertson’s husband, also will be honored.
They will be celebrated Feb. 24 at the Tree of Life Awards Dinner organized by the JNF, a nonprofit organization that has supported the restoration of Israel’s Negev Desert and educated students from around the world on Israel for more than a century.
Each year, the organization bestows the Tree of Life Award upon leaders who serve the community, promote American-Israeli friendship and are devoted to the peace and security of human life. The organization’s Orlando chapter has previously recognized UCF President John C. Hitt and UCF College of Medicine Dean Deborah German with Tree of Life awards.
“The Albertsons have been supporters of JNF in the past and, like Rick, they’ve been great community leaders,” said Bruce Gould, president of JNF Florida and a member of JNF’s national board.
“The three of them have done a tremendous amount not only for the JNF and UCF, but for so many different organizations,” Gould said. “We feel this is the perfect year to honor them.”
Walsh, who earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UCF, is president of the Knob Hill Group, a private development and strategic investing company. He formerly served as senior vice president for Corporate Affairs of Darden Restaurants Inc. A recipient of UCF’s Distinguished Alumnus Award, Walsh also serves on the College of Business Administration’s Advisory Council.
Judy Albertson is a charter member of UCF’s Board of Trustees. A well-known art dealer who previously owned a gallery in Winter Park, she has supported Flying Horse Editions, UCF’s fine arts press, since its establishment. In addition, she has served on an advisory committee for UCF’s Judaic Studies program.
David Albertson, a successful entrepreneur and agribusiness leader, received an honorary doctoral degree from UCF in 1989. A founder of the Orlando Magic, he has been a longtime supporter of the UCF Athletics Association.
To honor Walsh and the Albertsons, trees will be planted in their names in Israel’s Carmel Mountains, an area that was destroyed by fire in December.