Employees Honored at Luncheon

NMU faculty and staff were recognized at an April 16 luncheon for reaching retirement or various years-of-service milestones. Awards were also presented for excellence in service, distinguished team service and effective use of technology by staff.  

Excellence in Service Award recipients pictured with President Les Wong are (bottom row from left): Bernadette Norden and Sue Young. Top row from left: Mike Kaurala, Tim Schmeltzer, Carl Pace and John Basolo..

Recipients of the 2008 Excellence in Service Awards, along with excerpts from their nomination letters, are: John Basolo (Central Receiving), for his proud and loyal work at NMU for 38 years, his ability to handle nearly all of the university’s shipping and receiving needs and his close work with students who respect him as a role model and mentor; Art Gischia (Purchasing), for his understanding of operating in a “digital world,” initiating new practices and procedures in purchasing that make the work of departments easier, ensuring that NMU treats contractors and vendors fairly and overseeing the auxiliary services functions for the university; John Hambleton (AIS/Library), for taking time to educate himself in the field of systems work and computerization and for his work with authentication of users to vendors that has allowed faculty, staff and students off campus to easily access NMU’s online databases, indexes, journals and e-books; Mike Kaurala (U.S. Olympic Education Center), for handling the logistical aspects of the USOEC vs. China event and coordinating all housing, food service, facilities/equipment and transportation for USOEC resident athletes and teams; Bernadette Norden (Center for Student Enrichment), for her commitment, dedication, organizational skills and friendliness to students and staff and for coordinating the care package and campus planner services/fundraising activities; Carl Pace (Facilities Operations), for displaying great leadership consistently throughout his years and updating the campus master plan, promoting sustainability, expanding the university recycling program and leading the co-generation heating plant project; Tim Schmeltzer (Housing and Residence Life), for his skills and knowledge regarding the maintenance of the mechanical systems at NMU, responding to the needs of the department, working hard after hours and on weekends and providing well-maintained campus housing facilities for students; and Sue Young (Criminal Justice), for her assistance with department head changes, the implementation of a new online loss prevention management bachelor's degree program and her efforts to create interactive forms for graduate applications.

UNITED Distinguished Team Award recipients pictured with President Les Wong are (bottom row from left): Janet Koski, Judy Puncochar and April Lindala. Top row from left: Cindy Paavola, Judy Maara, Linda Johnson and student Kevin Lowe.

Distinguished Team Award recipients are the UNITED Conference 2007 planning team and the USOEC vs. China management team.

The UNITED conference brought the campus and community together in a celebration of cultures and Upper Peninsula history. Its purpose was to help prepare the community for a future in an increasingly diverse and globalized society. Members of that team were: Max Graves (Learning Resources), Linda Johnson (Multicultural Education and Resources Center), Mitchell Klett (School of Education), Janet Koski (Equal Opportunity), April Lindala (Center for Native American Studies), Judy Marra (Conference and Catering Services), Cindy Paavola (Communications and Marketing), and Judy Puncochar (School of Education).


USOEC vs. China Distinguished Team Award winners pictured with President Les Wong are (bottom row from left): Colby Lash, Susan Tollefson, Al Mitchell and Jackie Lange. Top row from left: Tony DeAnda, Tony Tollefson, Shannyn Gillespie, Bill Bergin, Mike Kaurala and Andy Tysz.

The USOEC vs. China event brought 25 athletes and coaches from China to NMU for a 10-day training camp and public competition. The management team set up meetings for the athletes to visit several elementary, high school and NMU classes.

USOEC employees on the management team were: Bill Bergin, Tony DeAnda, Mike Fields, Shannyn Gillespie, Jim Gruenwald, Ivan Ivanov, Mike Kaurala, Jackie Lange, Al Mitchell, Sue Tollefson and Tony Tollefson. Colby Lash of the USOC and Andy Tysz of USA Weightlifting also participated.


The Staff TLC Award was presented to the NMU Foundation prospect management team (not available for photo), which developed a metric to help the foundation preserve the history of relationships that are developed as part of the fundraising process.  By creating a detailed record of each donor relationship, the foundation is now more systematic in tracking critical details, acknowledging gifts in a timely manner, ensuring charitable gifts are used as the donor intended and reporting on the status of endowments. This measurement also holds staff to exacting requirements for the number of donors they visit, how such visits are reported, the amount of money raised and the percentage of solicitations that result in a donation. Team members were Allie Erickson, Amy Hubinger and Jane Surrell (all of the NMU Foundation) and Brian Larson (AdIT Consulting and Support Services).

A listing of employees who recently retired or reached years-of-service milestones is available here.


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Updated: April 17, 2008

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