Awards

Graff Distinguished Alumni Award Criteria

The purpose of the Graff Distinguished Alumni Award is to recognize alumni who have achieved honor and distinction with recognition and reputations that extend well beyond the immediate environments in which they live and work.

This award is presented at the UWL Alumni Awards Program each year. The award, a bronze plaque etched with a recipient's image and description of accomplishments, is prominently displayed in the Cleary Alumni & Friends Center.

Criteria for the award:

  • Attended classes at UW-La Crosse, but does not have to be a UWL graduate
  • At least 20 years since attended UWL
  • Must have a high ranking in his/her profession
  • Must have made numerous contributions to others
  • Distinctive records of achievement with recognition and reputations, which extend well beyond the immediate environments in which they live and work
  • The record of distinctive achievement for the candidates should extend over a substantial period of time to assure continuity of performance, stability and maturity
  • Current faculty members are not eligible
  • Candidates must be living

Standards for consideration include distinctive records of achievement, with recognition and reputation which extend well beyond the immediate environments in which they live and work. This record of distinctive achievement should extend over a substantial period of time to assure continuity of performance, stability and maturity.

Nomination process:

  • Solicitation of nominations.
  • Alumni, friends of the university, faculty and staff are invited to make nominations. (Simply forward the name to the Alumni Association at alumni@uwlax.edu or 608.785.8489).
  • Nominations are accepted year 'round.
  • Nominations must be received by Oct. 1 to be considered for the award given the following spring.
  • Nominees are notified and asked to submit the following information for their file:
    1. Resume
    2. Three letters of reference
    3. Any additional documentation they wish to provide
    4. Files need to be complete by Nov. 15 to be considered for the following year.

Selection process:

  • The Graff Distinguished Alumni Award selection committee will review all complete files and select the recipient(s). (The committee will be made up of current faculty and local alumni).
  • The Chancellor will notify the alums of their award(s).
  • Recipients are required to attend the awards ceremony. If for some reason they are unavailable, they will be recognized the following year.
  • Once all the necessary documents have been received, candidates remain active for consideration for a period of five years.

Nomination Form

Parker Distinguished Multicultural Alumni Award Criteria

The purpose of the Parker Distinguished Multicultural Alumni Award is to recognize alumni have significantly contributed to or advanced multicultural understanding. Dr. James Parker initiated this award in 1997.

Presentation: This award will be presented annually at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. Up to three awards will be given each year.

Criteria for the award:

  • Alumni must be multicultural or have contributed significantly to the improvement of multiracial culture and understanding on the campus and in their careers.
  • Achieved distinction in a chosen field of endeavor since graduation
  • Contributions to his/her field that have not necessarily received public acclaim
  • Human and ethical qualities
  • Contribution/involvement with the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

Nomination Process:

  • Solicitation of nominations
  • Alumni, friends of the university, faculty and staff are invited to make nominations. (Simply forward the name to the Alumni Association at alumni@uwlax.edu or 608.785.8489).
  • Nominations are accepted year 'round
  • Nominations must be received by Oct. 1
  • Nominees are notified and asked to submit the following information for their file:
  1. Resume
  2. At least two names of people who will support your nomination
  3. Any additional documentation they wish to provide
  4. Files need to be complete by Nov. 15 to be considered for the following year.

Selection Process:

  • Committee members will review all complete files and select the recipient(s).
  • The Chancellor will notify the alums of their award(s).
  • Recipients are expected to attend the awards ceremony. If for some reason they are unavailable, they will be recognized the following year.
  • Once all the necessary documents have been received, candidates remain active for consideration for a period of 2 years.

Nomination Form 

Rada Distinguished Alumni Award Criteria

Professor emeritus Ron Rada and his wife Jane created this award in 2002 to honor recent to mid-career alumni who were making exceptional contributions to their professionals and/or communities. The award provides another point on UWL's continuum of awards that recognize excellence at the various career stages of alumni.

The purpose of the Rada Distinguished Alumni Award is to recognize living alumni who have graduated within the last 20 years from UW-La Crosse and meet one or more of the award criteria.

This award is presented annually at the UWL Alumni Awards Program during spring commencement weekend. Up to two awards will be given each year. The award includes a scholarship of $2,000 presented to a current student in a department of the recipient's choosing. Recipients receive a gift showcasing their accomplishments.

Criteria for the award:

  • Achieved distinction in a chosen field of endeavor since graduation
  • Made an outstanding contribution to their profession
  • Demonstrated exceptional personal qualities through participation in activities that provide long-lasting benefits to communities and society

Nomination Process:

  • Alumni, faculty, staff and friends of the university are encouraged to make nominations.
    (Simply forward the name to the Alumni Association at alumni@uwlax.edu or 608.785.8489).
  • Nominations are accepted throughout the year.
  • Nominations must be received by Oct. 1 to be considered for the spring award.
  • Nominees are notified and asked to submit the following:
    1. Resume
    2. Three letters of reference
    3. Any additional documentation they wish to provide
    4. Files need to be complete by Nov. 15 to be considered for the following year.
  • Once all the necessary documents have been received, nominees remain active for consideration for a period of two years. Individuals nominated in their nineteenth year of eligibility will remain active for consideration for a period of one year.

Selection Process:

  • The Rada Distinguished Alumni Award selection committee will review all complete files and select the recipient(s).
  • The Chancellor will notify the recipient(s) of the award.
  • Recipients are required to attend the awards ceremony.

Bios of past recipients

Nomination Form

The Burt & Norma Altman Teacher Education Award

The purpose of the Burt and Norma Altman Teacher Education Award is to honor and recognize outstanding educators and the significant contributions they make to children, schools and the communities they serve.

This award is presented annually at the UWL Alumni Awards program.

Criteria for the award:

  • Attended classes at UW-La Crosse, but does not have to be a UWL graduate
  • Must have made a significant contribution to education or an education-related profession as well as the school(s) and/or communities they serve
  • Distinctive record of achievement, which may or may not have been publicly recognized
  • Current UWL faculty and staff members are ineligible
  • Candidates must be living

Nomination Process:

  • Solicitation of nominations.
  • Alumni, friends of the university, faculty and staff are invited to make nominations. (Simply forward the name to the Alumni Association at alumni@uwlax.edu or 608.785.8489).
  • Nominations are accepted year round.
  • Nominations must be received by Oct. 1 to be considered for the award given the following year.
  • Nominees are notified and asked to submit the following information for their file:
    1. Resume
    2. Three letters of reference
    3. Any additional documentation they wish to provide
    4. Files need to be complete by Nov. 15 to be considered for the following year.

Selection Process:

  • The UWL Alumni Awards committee will review all complete files and select the recipient(s).
  • The Chancellor will notify the alums of their award(s).
  • Recipients are required to attend the awards ceremony. If for some reason they are unavailable, they will be recognized the following year.
  • Once all the necessary documents have been received, candidates remain active for consideration for a period of five years.

Award Recipients (travel expenses paid in full and recipient receives a School of Education/UWL plaque)

Nomination Form

Honorary Degree Recipients

2013
Brent Smith 

2012
David R. Skogen
Donald J. Weber

2010
Bill Miller

2009
Sandra Lee, '84-87

Jake & Janet Hoeschler Award for Excellence

The Jake & Janet Hoeschler Award for Excellence recognizes a College of Business Administration graduate for academic accomplishment and qualities of leadership demonstrated in campus and community activities. Janet Hoeschler, a 1940 graduate, established the award in 1992 to signify a partnership of business and the university. The award extends the Hoeschlers' belief in excellence, education, philanthropy and the La Crosse Community. Recipients receive $1,500.

2017
Benjamin Jordan, '17

2016
Haley Cassidy, '16

2015
Samantha Wallace, '15

2014
Mitchell Reiser, '14

2013
Adam Pugh, '12

2012
Hoang Vo, '12

2011
Jared Aeschbach, '11

2010
Raymond Leach, '10

2009
Mark Magruder, '09

2008
Ryan Van Loo, '08

2007
Melissa O’Neill, ’07

2006
Meagan Kempen, ’06

2005
Wesley Jobke, ’05

2004
Autumn Tellier, ’04

2003
Marc R. Gall, ’03

2002
Abbie Woelfel Kennedy, ’02

2001
Andrea Bishop, ’01

2000
Shayna Bachmann, ’00

1999
Jason Stevens, ’99    

1998
LeAnn Berry, ’98

1997
Ryan Festerling, ’97’

1996
Stephen Semotuk, ’96

1995
Jennifer Jackson Soto, ’95

1994
Robert Jacobs, ’94

1993
Michelle DeCora, ’92

1992
Jane Hunt Gostisha, ’92

John E. Magerus Award for the Outstanding Graduation Senior from the College of Liberal Studies

John E. Magerus Award for the Outstanding Graduation Senior from the College of Liberal Studies recognized an outstanding graduate for academic accomplishments, leadership, and involvement in the campus and community. The award is named for Magerus, who retired in 2004 after 28 years of teaching and serving as an administrator for the college. The recipient receives $1,000

2017
Rachel Ramthun, '17

2016
Cassandra Philippon, '16

2015
Katherine Svitavsky, '15

2014
Karin Johnson, '14

2013
Sara Kroth, '13

2012
Vanessa Schwartz, '12

2011
Katy Christensen, '11

2010
Patte Michalek, '10

2009
Natash Musalem-Perez, '09

2008
Hollie Nyseth, '08

2007
Tyler Schuenemann, ’07

2006
Patricia Zanski, ’06

2005
Jessica McMunn, ’05

2004
Christina Halverson, ’04

2003
Tana M. Mann, ’03

2002
Sara Lassig, ’02

Murphy Awards for Academic Excellence

The Murphy Awards for Academic Excellence recognize the university's top two graduating scholars, as chosen by the Scholarship and Awards Committee. A grant from the Murphy Foundation created the awards in 1980. Marjorie P. Murphy, foundation president, cited a desire to recognize outstanding and exceptional scholastic ability. Recipients receive $1,500 and $1,000 respectively.

2017
Jack Flinchum, '16
Courtney Mumm, '17

2016
Marissa Eckrote, '16
Danielle Weber, '15

2015
Kali Kramolis, '14
Jacob Glow, '15

2014
Stefanie Sippl, '14
Elizabeth Camenga, '14

2013
Tanya Larsen, '13
Jordan Ludwigson, '13

2012
Hoang Vo, '12
Sean Harrington, '12

2011
Kate Slisz, '11
Nicolaas van Oss, '11

2010
Molly Day, '09
Arika Wussow, '09

2009
Rachel Kramer, '09
Melissa Sands, '09

2008
John Lauermann, '08
Gustav Borstad, '08

2007
Maggie Lee McHugh, ’07
Lee Wienkes, ’06

2006
Daron Williams, ’06
Marisa Comstock, ’06

2005
Brooke Chuzles, ’05
Brigitte Fischer Smith, ’05

2004
Andrew Becher, ’04
LeeAnne Thorson Schwan, ’04

2003
Jocelyn Loe, ’03
Christi Drexler, ’02

2002
Nicholas Krause, ’02
Leah Rausch, ’01

2001
Jennifer Prescher, ’01
Tina Basten Schmidt, ’01

2000
Edward Stenehjem, ’00    
Theresa French Reynolds, ’99

1999
Tim Urness, ’99
Jordana Kammerud Holmen, ’99

1998
Judd Lefeber, ’98
Eric Martin, ’98

1997
Mangala Hettiarachchi, ’97
John David, ’97

1996
Shannon Pennefeather Gardner, ’96
Bryan Lueck, ’96

1995
Michael Axtell, ’95
Shelly Longhorn Lewis, ’95

1994
Jeffrey Schwinefus, ’94
Analisa Lee, ’93

1993
David Egle, ’93
Beth Markos, ’92

1992
Bradley Frazier, ’91
Lisa Hale Peterson, ’92

1991
Debra Egle Nielsen, ’91
Aimee Staut Nething, ’91

1990
Catherine Running Gillman, ’89
Catherine Mowbray, ’90

1989
Lisa Ross Besman, ’89
Debrah Dippen-Watterson, ’89

1988
Juliane Hoffman, ’88
Michelle Schmidt Dallmier, ’88

1987
David Smutny, ’87
Christine Meyer Jorde, ’87

1986
Amy Nickel Miller, ’85
William Pekarske, ’86

1985
David Novey, ’85
Mary Spindler, ’85

1984
Anne Morgan Hlavacka, ’84
Tamara Bartelt Bushmeyer, ’84

1983
David Hage, ’83
Sharon Murphy Rohde, ’83

1982
Michael Kowal, ’82
David Dirkse, ’82
Donald Solberg, ’82

1981
David Silvis, ’81    
Mohammad Chan, ’81

Strzelczyk Award in Science and Health

The Strzelczyk Award in Science and Health recognizes an outstanding senior in the College of Science and Health for academic achievement and service to the campus and community. Robert, a 1954 graduate and Judy Strzelczyk endowed the ward in 1996. Also, they have provided funding for physical therapy research projects, research equipment, student loans, and four full-time tuition scholarships. Recipients receive $1,000.

2017
Katherine Davenport, '17

2016
Zackory Erickson, '16

2015
Evan Glasgow, '15

2014
Anthony Brandt, '14

2013
Ben Sturomski. '13

2012
Crystal Stundahl, '12

2011
Allie Wood, '11

2010
Sara Schreiner, '10

2009
John Awowale, '09

2008
Bjorn Bergman, '08

2007
Craig Tainter, ’07

2006
Bernadette O’Reilly, ’06

2005
Krista Asp, ’05

2004
Benjamin Turner, ’04

2003
Jaren G. Thomas, ’03

2002
Michael Thorgersen, ’02

2001
Pamela Clemens, ’01

2000
Nicholas Roland, ’00

1999
Jeremy Dobler, ’99

1998
Christine Cumming, ’98

1997
Eric Gansen, ’97

1996
Heather Neuman, ’96