During a formal reception on May 12, the Elmira College President's Council announced alumna Krista Niles-Updyke '97 as this year's recipient of The President's Council Award.

The award, which is presented annually each spring, recognizes outstanding Elmira College graduates who have distinguished themselves and the College by exemplary service in the College's greater community, and who, by giving generously of their time and talent, have improved the quality of the community.

Niles-Updyke graduated Summa Cum Laude from Elmira College in 1997 with two bachelor's degrees, one in Accounting and a second in Business Administration. A native of Afton, New York, Niles-Updyke remained in Elmira post-graduation and has spent 25 years of her career in auditing, accounting, and consulting as a partner at Mengel, Metzger, Barr & Company. In addition, Niles-Updyke served as an adjunct professor at Elmira College for four years teaching the Principles of Accounting course.

Niles-Updyke is fully invested in the Elmira community. She currently serves on the board of directors for Arnot Health and the Food Bank of the Southern Tier. She is a member of the Elmira College President's Council, the Big Flats Zoning Board of Appeals, and the Big Flats Little League Baseball.

"What Krista brings to the table is more than expertise and integrity, she brings kindness," said Mary Beth Conwell, Public Relations Chair for the President's Council. "She is willing to help others even when it isn't convenient, even when she doesn't have to. She is the embodiment of what this award means, contributing her time and talent to the betterment of our community."

In her spare time, Niles-Updyke enjoys spending time with her family, including her husband John and their four children.

Also during the reception, the President's Council formally presented Alexandra (Allie) Ellie '22 with the 2022 Stand Energy Prize. The award was previously announced during the Stand Energy Prize Recognition luncheon honoring interns. Ellie was unable to attend the reception as she is participating in a Term III travel course.


Founded in 1855, Elmira College is a private, residential, liberal arts college offering 25-plus majors, an honors program, 17 academic societies, and 16 Division III varsity teams. Located in the Southern Finger Lakes Region of New York, Elmira's undergraduate and graduate student population hails from more than 20 states and nine countries. Elmira is a Phi Beta Kappa College and has been ranked a top college, nationally, for student internships. The College is also home to the Center for Mark Twain Studies, one of four historically significant Twain heritage sites in the U.S., which attracts Twain scholars and educators from around the world for research on the famous literary icon. Proud of its history and tradition, the College is committed to the ideals of community service, and intellectual and individual growth.

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