Recognizing the contributions of our stellar UWM employees to their alma mater.

Presented each spring at the Alumni Employee Awards and Appreciation Lunch, these awards provide fellow employees and students a way to honor those who make a difference at UWM.

Award Categories
This award recognizes alumni for exceptional performance in their work as employees of UWM. It honors alumni who, through their work, have elevated the University’s mission, reputation or morale and who embody professionalism, enthusiasm and dedication. Honorees achieve excellence and demonstrate impact, often through committee work, special assignments and/or other noteworthy activities.

The “Unsung Hero” Award is presented to alumni employees not widely recognized for their work, but who have in some significant way contributed to UWM.  As they work to fulfill their unit and division goals, honorees contribute behind the scenes with their skill, time and effort furthering the vision and mission of the University.  Honorees should be known for their consistency, dependability, respect for others, commitment to their team and willingness to pitch in to achieve collective goals.  Honorees are both supportive to others and results-oriented, and frequently work through obstacles to make the impossible possible.

The Community-University: We Make a Difference Award honors those alumni employees who as representatives of UWM have generously contributed their time and talents for the enrichment of others and the betterment of their communities.  This award bestows recognition on those individuals who have given of themselves in support of various civic, charitable, philanthropic and/or social service organizations, and who have, in doing so, forged or strengthened partnerships between these organizations and the University.

In keeping with UWM’s strategic opportunities and aspirations, this award recognizes alumni employees for their work promoting an outstanding learning environment that prepares students to live in and work in the 21st century. It honors alumni employees who provide students a continuum of quality educational experiences that instill deep, critical, imaginative thinking and understanding, cultural fluency, leadership skills and an entrepreneurial mindset. It recognizes alumni who help students maximize utilization of our urban setting, community partnerships and experiential learning experiences. The award bestows recognition on individuals known for their celebration of and support for our diverse student body.

2019 Nominees

Michael Westendorf, ’96, Director of Operations & Meteorologist, Innovative Weather
Gary Williams, ’75, ’77, ’91, Director & Associate Professor, Educational Policy & Community Studies; Institute for Intercultural Research

Sue Conway, ’91, Senior Student Services Coordinator, Center for International Education
Dave Edwards, ’75, General Manager, WUWM
Amber Grupe, ’10, Administrative Program Manager, Geosciences
Kay Jansen, DNP, RN, ’78, ’11, Undergraduate Program Director & Clinical Professor, College of Nursing
Thomas “TJ” Jeske, ’82, ’87, Assistant Dean, Student Affairs,
Lubar School of Business
Dave McClanahan, ’90, ’98, Faculty Associate, Electrical Engineering
Mary Jo Osborne, ’89, Director of First Year Program & Senior Lecturer, PSOA Art & Design
Terese Teachout, ’03, EMBA Program Manager, Lubar School of Business

Jason Dietenberger, ’95, Business, Innovation, & Design Internship Coordinator, Student Affairs Instructor, Engineering & SOIS
Ray Scolavino, ’91, ’02, Senior Lecturer, Senior Lecturer

Kari Brickler, ’94, Nursing & Patient Support Services Manager, Norris Health Ctr
Shane Haensgen, ’16, Doctoral Retention Adviser, Graduate School
William Krueger, ’01, ’06, Woodshop Manager, School of Architecture & Urban Planning
Jane Martell, ’76, Human Resources Manager, Engineering & Applied Science
Kathryn Martin-Meurer, ’05, ’07, Lecturer & Recruitment Coordinator, PSOA Art & Design
Jennifer Powell, ’01, ’05, Human Resources Manager, College of Health Sciences & College of Nursing
Debbie Ritchie-Kolberg, ’76, Program Assistant, Sociology

RSVP for the 2019 UWM Employee Awards & Appreciation Luncheon

Join us for our annual celebration in appreciation of UWM alumni employees and their amazing contributions to the University!

The 2019 UWM Employee Awards & Appreciation Luncheon takes place on Wednesday, March 27, 2019 at the Golda Meir Library, Fourth Floor Conference Center.

Nominees for the Alumni Employee Awards will be recognized and winners announced at the lunch program, beginning at noon.

Complimentary lunch catered by Corner Bakery. RSVP to attend now!

Sponsored by:

Selection Committee

2019 Awards Selection Committee

Dr. Michael Brondino 79, Helen Bader School of Social Welfare
Jaemi Cummins 14, Lubar School of Business
Michael Doylen 00, UWM Libraries
Angel Hessel 91, School of Education
Tammy Howard 15, Secretary of the University’s Office
Bron Nehring 09, Legal Affairs
Chad Zahrt, 99, School of Information Studies

2018 Award Recipients

Outstanding Performance Award: Angel Hessel, ’91

“Angel Hessel is an outstanding contributor to the School of Education and UWM. She is an exemplary representative of UWM and represents the best in what we hope our alumni do in their professional careers.”

Community-University: We Make a Difference Award: Patricia Torres Nájera, ’91 & ’03

“Her ability to connect people across many identities, political perspectives and economic backgrounds is a priceless asset to UWM.”

Inspiring Student Success Award: Carrie von Bohlen, ’01

“She is an individual of broad ability and has a deep commitment to students and their success.”

Unsung Hero Award: Christopher Ney, ’87

“Chris will help anyone, and does help everyone. Honestly, I don’t know how we would get along without Chris Ney.”

Alumni Association Champion Award: Karen Massetti-Moran, ’15

“Karen has worked to make sure mechanisms are in place to identify alumni employees of the University and collaborated to build a culture of Panther Pride, not just with alumni employees but across the entire university.”