Oct. 7, 2005
The Following is courtesy of Orange Coast College Media Relations
Oct. 4, 2005
THREE JOIN HALL OF FAME
By JIM CARNETT
An impressive trio of former Orange Coast College students were inducted last Thursday evening into the college's Alumni Hall of Fame.
The inductees were Inonge Mbikusita-Lewanika, ambassador to the United States from the Republic of Zambia; Brent Mayne, former major league baseball player; and Paul Frank, director and head designer of Paul Frank Industries.
Ambassador MbikusitaLewanika arrived at Orange Coast College as a 17-year-old student in 1960, fresh from a mission school in rural Zambia. She graduated two years later.
Mbikusita-Lewanika went on to complete bachelor's and master's degrees at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She earned a Ph.D. from New York University.
For 15 years, she taught at colleges in Zambia. For a decade, she worked for the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), fighting for the rights of African women, children and refugees.
Mbikusita-Lewanika served two terms in the Zambian Parliament. In 2002, she was appointed ambassador and special envoy for the president of the Republic of Zambia.
For the past two years, she has served as Zambia's ambassador to the U.S.
In 1959, her father, a Zambian diplomat, visited the U.S. to look at colleges for his daughter. He liked what he saw at Orange Coast College.
"I would like to thank the officials of OCC for welcoming my father and giving him a campus tour," she told the audience Thursday.
"He was greatly impressed, and Orange Coast College ended up setting the foundation for my life."
She said that OCC gave her an introduction to the United States. Prior to her arrival on campus, her knowledge of America was restricted to what she'd read in history books and seen in Hollywood films.
Brent Mayne played baseball at OCC in 1987 for his father, Mike Mayne. Brent hit .297 for the Pirates and led the team to a conference title. He went on to play for two years at Cal State Fullerton and was an All-American.
The former OCC catcher enjoyed a 15-year major league career, playing for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Kansas City Royals, New York Mets, Oakland A's, Colorado Rockies, Arizona Diamondbacks and San Francisco Giants. He hit .301 for the Giants in 1999 and .301 for the Rockies in 2000.
Mayne called his induction into the Hall of Fame a "great honor."
"It seems like I've had a relationship with Orange Coast College all of my life," he said. "Most students go here one, two or three years. My younger brother Kevin and I were here for 10 or 11 years. It was our gigantic playground when we were kids."
A talented musician, Paul Frank has been playing in bands since he was 13. While an Orange Coast College art student, from 1994 to 1996, he experimented with altering his band's clothing. In 1995, his \$100-million design business was born. It was small at first, but it had a steep growth curve.
Before long, Paul Frank Industries began to offer clothing, accessories and watches. It now produces bicycles and surfboards. Today, Paul Frank Industries is a cultural phenomenon that features more than 200 different characters -- all created by Frank.
"Wow!" Frank said upon receiving his award Thursday. "I came to this school after attending Golden West College because I was so impressed with the art projects I saw here. My favorite class was three-dimensional design. It was so cool. I also took freehand drawing and other art classes."
Frank thanked the college for giving him a strong foundation.
"I'm honored to receive this award. I owe a great deal to this school!"