Lamar University honored Rachelle Lanea Brignac of Orange with the Plummer Award, recognizing her as the top female graduate in Lamar’s class of August 2009.

Brignac, a graduate of Orangefield High School, is the wife of Robert Brignac and daughter of Rhonda McManus. She earned a bachelor of social work, graduating from Lamar with a 4.0 grade-point average. She is now a resident of Baytown.

President James Simmons presented the award during a record-setting commencement Saturday, Aug. 15, in the Montagne Center, where state Senator Judith Zaffirini (D-Laredo) delivered the commencement address.
“This morning’s commencement includes two milestones for Lamar University,” Simmons said. “First, a record number of diplomas, 1,334, will be conferred. And, next, 1,100 students from across the state will receive master’s degree – the lion’s share being master of education degrees earned through Lamar’s innovative Academic Partnership Program.”

Among other highlights, Lamar awarded the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to Sallye Jones Keith of Beaumont, a philanthropist and civic leader whose contributions to Lamar and the community span more than half a century.
More than 600 students participated in the ceremony.

Plummer Awards honor the late Otho Plummer, who was chairman emeritus of the Lamar board of regents and a longtime board member.

At Lamar, Brignac was a recipient of the Archie Land Good Heart Scholarship. She is a member of Phi Kappa Phi national honor society and Alpha Delta Mu social work honor society. Brignac served as president and vice president of Best Buddies and as a member of the Social Work Student Association and editor of the association’s monthly newsletter. She plans to work for the Texas Department of Family Protective Services. She lists her hobbies as watching movies and visiting new restaurants.