The West Virginia University Alumni Association will honor Judge Irene C. Berger as its 2006 Outstanding Alumna during Homecoming weekend Oct. 13-14.

Each year, the alumni association honors an outstanding alumna/alumnus who has demonstrated loyalty and commitment to association and WVU . The recipient is recognized during halftime of the Homecoming football game Saturday, as well as during the Homecoming parade Friday evening.

Judge Berger, a native of McDowell County, graduated from WVU with a degree in mathematics in 1976 and received her law degree from the WVU College of Law in 1979. She is currently serving as a circuit judge for the 13th Judicial Circuit in Kanawha County.

Judge Berger has maintained a longstanding commitment to her alma mater since graduating more than 25 years ago. She currently serves as a member of the Student Affairs Visiting Committee and previously served as the 102nd president of the Alumni Association Board of Directors. She was a member of the College of Law and Social Justice Visiting Committees and the former Institutional Board of Advisors.

Judge Berger is an extraordinary Mountaineer,said Stephen L. Douglas, president and chief executive officer, WVU Alumni Association.She has been part of the University since receiving her diplomas and has always been a champion for WVU , its students and its alumni. She is extremely deserving of this recognition.

Judge Berger has also distinguished herself in the professional community, receiving numerous awards and honors. She was ranked first in overall qualifications in 1996 Judicial Evaluation Poll conducted by the West Virginia State Bar. In 2003, she was named a Fellow of the American Bar Association and was given the Mountain State Bar Association Merit Award. She received the Distinguished Woman in Law Award by the WVU College of Law Womens Law Caucus. Judge Berger was honored as a West Virginia African-American Woman of Distinction by the West Virginia Womans Commission, as well as a Foundation Fellow by the WV State Bar.

In 2004, then Gov. Bob Wise presented her with the Distinguished West Virginian award and she received the Community Champion Award from the Kanawha Institute for Social Research and Action. She has been honored with the 2000 Outstanding Woman of Achievement Award by the Charleston YWCA , the 1997 Celebrate Woman Award for the West Virginia Womans Commission, and the 1996 Woman of the Year Award by the Charleston Area Business and Professional Womens Club.

Judger Berger and her husband David Howell live in Cross Lanes.

The WVU Alumni Association, chartered in 1873, represents more than 165,000 University graduates residing in every county in West Virginia, every state in the union and approximately 60 foreign nations. With nearly 100 registered chapters and constituent groups, the Associations 26,000 dues-paying members support Homecoming Weekend, the WVU Academy of Distinguished Alumni, Loyalty Permanent Endowment Fund, Student Alumni Association, and dozens of other social and philanthropic programs. For more information about the WVU Alumni Association, visit