The College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, along with the CAFE Alumni Association, host the Night of Excellence on a biennial basis. This awards ceremony recognizes and celebrates alumni and friends who have made a lasting impact on one's chosen field, community, and society through outstanding professional, philanthropic, or volunteer accomplishments.

See below to learn more about the awards presented and for additional details on the nominating process.

For nearly 150 years, the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment has turned out extraordinary alumni who have contributed substantially to their chosen fields, their communities and society. To pay homage to these and future distinguished graduates, the college initiated a Hall of Distinguished Alumni. This award is the highest honor the college bestows. A full list of past inductees and their biographies can be found at the left of this page.

For guidelines and to nominate a worthy alum, see the nomination form here.


The CAFE Friend Award honors and recognizes a person, persons, or entity who have demonstrated a strong commitment and provided extraordinary service to the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment or any of its extensions.

For guidelines and to nominate a worthy candidate, see the nomination form here.


The Horizon Award honors and recognizes a person or persons for their early professional accomplishments. This award is based upon a significant record of career achievement and a promise of future professional success.

For guidelines and to nominate a worthy alum, see the nomination form here.


The Paul Appel Alumni Service Award honors and recognizes a person or persons who have provided extraordinary service to the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment Alumni Association. Honoree/s can be an alum or non-alum of the college.

Paul Appel was instrumental in starting alumni activities for the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. Appel was tasked, by Dean Charles Barnhart in 1973, to update the alumni database and get alums back to campus one day a year. Appel implemented the annual Roundup event held on campus each fall and started 15 geographical alumni chapters across the state. He is praised for his foresight of the need for alumni relations work at the college level. Much of Appel’s alumni efforts are still in effect today.

For guidelines and to nominate a worthy candidate, see the nomination form here.


Nominations for the 2022 Night of Excellence are due by August 15, 2021.