Distinguished Alumni Awards

UNK Alumni Distinguished Alumni Award Winners 2018
Awards-Luncheon-Square

We honor past award recipients at the UNK Alumni Distinguished Awards Luncheon as a time-honored tradition.

Each year, the UNK Alumni Association recognizes outstanding alumni who are making significant contributions to their communities and businesses. We know there are many deserving alumni out there and we need your assistance with nominations.

UNK Alumni Association Awards are selected by a committee from the following categories:

  • Distinguished Alumni Award
  • Distinguished Young Alumni Award
  • Distinguished International Alumni Award
  • Jim Rundstrom Distinguished Service Award

Award recipients are recognized during UNK Homecoming weekend, held in September or October.

To nominate a Loper alum, please complete and return the UNKAA DA Award Nomination Form by April 1 to tricia.danburg@unkalumni.org or UNK Alumni Association, PO Box 2678, Kearney, NE 68848.

Don’t let those outstanding Lopers go unnoticed simply because they weren’t nominated! Be a part of the process, nominate a Loper today!

Want to see all of our past award recipients? A list of all past award recipients dating back to 1980 is below.

2018 Award Recipients as pictured above from left to right:

Distinguished Alumni Award Winners

  • Rakesh Srivastava ’02, MSE ’05
  • Roger Mathiesen ’73, MSE ’77
  • Michael Coe ’68, MSE ’74

Don Fox Lecturers

  • Kathleen McDonald ’87
  • Susan (McDonald) Fanta  ’89

Distinguished Alumni Award Winner

  • Sandra (Bishop) Olson ’71

Gary Thomas Distinguished Music Alumna

  • Kelly A. Miller93

Distinguished Young Alumni Award Winner

  • Erica (Wendland) Lee ’03

The Jim Rundstrom Distinguished Service Award Winners

  • Mat ’99 and Amy Cope ’99 

College of Education Distinguished Educator of the Year

  • Don Clark95

PAST AWARD WINNERS AND BANQUET PROGRAMS

2017 UNK Today Homecoming

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Col. (Ret.) Jan R. Frye, ’72
LeRoy Swedlund, ’69
Shannon (Welch) Vesely, ’77, MAE ’79

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Brenda (Snodgrass) Christensen, ’83

Distinguished Young Alumni Award
Dusty Reynolds, ’04

International Distinguished
Alumni Award

Francisco Hildago-Suarez, MBA ’80

College of Education
Distinguished Educator of the Year
Sandra (Thomas) Hanson, ’81, MAE ’89

Dr. Don Fox Lecturer
Julie (Slaughter) Larsen, ’77, MSE ’88

Dr. Gary Thomas
Distinguished Music Alumna

Sarah Ponder, ’03

2016
25-year celebration
No awards presented

FALL 2015 UNK Today Homecoming

UNK Alumni Distinguished Alumni Award
Chuck Schwartz ’72
Julie Ignowski Speirs ’78

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Sharron Jacobson Altmaier ’55

Distinguished Young Alumnus Award
Travis Miller ’01
Andrea Walton Miller ’02

2014 UNK Today Homecoming

Distinguished Alumni Award
Robert Hippe, J.D. ’63
Dr. David Jacox ’72
Mary Vaughn ’78

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Ron Glandt
Myron Placek ’80
Gregg Grubaugh ’79

Distinguished Young Alumnus Award
Travis Hollman ’01
Dr. Angela Emrick Hollman ’01

2013 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Dr. Susanne Bloomfield ’68, MAE ’79
Dr. Harold Deselms ’64, MSE ’68
Terry Heimes ’86
John Leehy ’80

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

John & JoDell Payne ’62

Distinguished Young Alumnus Award
Dr. Brad Bohn ’06

2012 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Jamie Gutierrez ’89, ’90
Bill McGahan ’64, MSE ’68, EDS ’91
Jeanette Keller Wojtalewicz ’84

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Jerry & Nancy Stahr Dulitz ’65

Distinguished Young Alumnus Award
Dan Whelan ’00

2011 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Dr. Andrew Aprill ’85
Jack Crowley ’60
Dr. Phyllis Markussen ’68, MSE ’88
Linda Nelson Timmons ’85

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
John Wolf ’73

Distinguished Young Alumnus Award
Dr. Chad Vokoun ’96

2010 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Don Envick ’61, MSE ’65, Ph.D.
Dennis Pool ’70, Ed.D.
Carolyn Wagner Snyder ’64
Cameron “Cam” Sutton ’70

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished AlumniService Award

Larry Edwards ’64

Distinguished Young Alumnus Award
Greg Daake ’98

2009 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

LaVern Franzen ’67
Thomas Buecker ’73
Ron Larsen ’66
Teresa Kowalski Porter ’80

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

John E. Clinch ’62

2008 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Tom Carman ’71
Bill Dunn ’73
Dr. Jean Ochsner Lukesh ’85, MAE ’90, MSE ’93
Brenda VanLengen ’88

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Kathy Horvath ’67
Dallas & Sheryl Wymore ’74

2007 Program Link

UNK Alumni 
Distinguished Alumni Award
Dwayne “Butch” Brown ’70
Kevin Rader ’84
Judy Henggeler Spohr ’63
Dr. Don Unger ’65, MSE ’69, Ph.D. ’80

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Jeff Stelling ’93

2006 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Norris Haring ’48
Nancy Montanez Johner ’94
Dr. Gary Smidt ’59
Ron Williams ’67

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Sue Batie ’73

2005
Centennial Celebration
No awards presented

2004 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Judge Richard Kopf, ’69
Dr. Larry Peterson, ’79
Karen Wyatt Rhoads, ’81

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Roger Jones, ’65

2003 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Kip Anderson, ’90
Jack Garlock, ’77
Joe Higgins, ’64
JoAn Scott, ’86

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Paul Wagner, ’58

*2002

UNK Alumni 
Distinguished Alumni Award
Curt Coffman, ’84
Joe Green ’75
Dr. Larry Hardesty, ’69 & ’71
Dr. Marge Kindvall Harouff, ’62

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Janell Godberson Beveridge, ’79

2001 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Joyce Focken Blackwell ’79
Lori Goa McClurg ’82
Dennis Nelson ’73
Larry Schulte ’70, MA ’78

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Jim Armagost ’65, MAE ’67
Betty Jo Gillespie Armagost ’67

2000 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Ron ‘Gus’ Gustafson ’88
Jerry Kriha ’59
Marilyn Prososki McGahan ’65, MAE ’77
Paul Younes ’75

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Jennie Silas Gutierrez ’73, MAE ’81
Dale Kastens ’64

1999 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Dianne Gabrukiewicz Bystrom ’75
Dayle Fitzke ’51
Judge Karen Jueck Hunt ’61
Dr. Robert Kupper ’73

Jim Rundstrom Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Jim Van Marter ’53

1998 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Tyler Martin ’81
Dr. Verla Worthing Robbins ’43
Dr. Mike Shada ’43
Jacklyn Brunke Smith ’72

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Dottie Holcomb Lowe

1997 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

George Beattie ’69
Dr. Tom Green ’77
Joyce Bryan Strout ’70
Dr. Gary Thomas ’55

Jim Rundstrom Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Ethel Rother ’73

1996 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Merle Hinrichs ’64
Bettelee Frahm Lewis ’47
Mark Lundeen ’81
Dr. Paul Paulman ’74

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Dick Hock ’48

1995 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Ronald Crampton ’63
Dr. Elisabeth
Wright Erling ’42
Dr. Daniel Mowrey ’73
Dr. Larry Peterson ’58

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Jean Nama ’53
June Nama Murty ’55

1994 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Jim Griess ’63, MSE ’68
Lucile Wiley Ring ’44
Dr. Warren Treptow ’75
Barc Wade ’48

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Al Lybarger ’57
Addie Lewis Lybarger ’55

1993 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Karen Kilgarin ’79
Duane Obermier ’65
Dr. Kenneth Schroer ’69
E. K. Yanney ’49

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Lori Lienhart Waters ’74

1992 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Betty Kort ’64
Dr. Daniel Lydiatt ’73
Norman Otto ’49
Juanetta Strohmyer ’66

Jim Rundstrom Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Joe Davenport ’53

1991 Program Link

UNK Alumni 
Distinguished Alumni Award
James Barton ’38
Dr. Lynn Casey ’65
Dr. Helen Stauffer ’64
Dr. Dick Triplett ’58

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Dale Falter ’59
Joan Christ Falter ’59

*1990

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Dr. Halvor Christensen ’35
Dr. Louis Kenney ’39
Celann LaGreca ’79
Dr. Joe Lutjeharms ’58

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Maureen Neary Miller ’74

1989 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Neal Dunning ’44
Larry Hall ’64
Dr. Charles Lindly ’52
DiAnna Schimek ’63

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Ron Landstrom ’53

1988 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Gary Haller ’62
Dr. Jim Hansen ’58
Larry Ludden ’46
Scott Nelson ’71

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Dallas Sinnen ’56

1987 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Carlisle Anderson ’36
Bill Beavers ’58
Thelma Lang ’59
Dr. Clifford Trump ’59

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Dr. Ora Lindau ’41

*1986

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Leland Holdt ’71
Dr. Elizabeth McMahan ’43
Jim Morey ’66
Dr. Leonard Skov ’56
Dr. Herbert Welte ’24

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Connie Shivers Hatcher ’69

1985 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Homer McConnell ’27
Wayne McKinney ’48
Dr. Ward Newcomb ’44
Burnell Saum ’50

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award

Barry Sherman ’64

1984 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Stan Miller ’66
John Payne ’62
Marilyn Peterson ’55
Bob Phares ’62

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Don Briggs ’51, MAE ’57

*1983

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Mildred Hansen ’28
John Marrow ’40
Wayne Smithey ’44
Dr. Don Welch ’54

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Earl Rademacher ’54

1982 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Bill Milldyke ’58
John Mitchell ’47
Clayton Morey ’40
Edross “Kay” Uehling Robinson ’31

Jim Rundstrom
Distinguished Alumni Service Award
Jim Rundstrom ’64

1981 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Pete Kotsiopulos ’70
Dr. Clarence Lindahl ’29
Dr. Jim Nielsen ’45

1980 Program Link

UNK Alumni
Distinguished Alumni Award
Dr. Ewald Ehly ’58
Dr. Milton Hassel ’41
Richard Mengler ’33
Mary Elaine House ’40
Rae Weimer ’26

* No booklet available for this time period.