Alumni to honor students, alumni, family at May 3 banquet

The Nebraska Alumni Association will honor 24 accomplished UNL alumni, eight promising students, and an outstanding family at the annual Alumni Awards Banquet, An All-University Celebration, May 3, at the Nebraska Champions Club.

The diverse group of honorees is accomplished in their careers and communities, and represents dozens of professions. For example, Connie Schmaljohn (1976 graduate) is the senior research scientist for Medical Defenses Against Infectious Disease Threats at the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases. Neal Ely (2007 graduate) founded and operates Ely Farms LLC, a small food manufacturing business that sells pickled asparagus and pickled peppers in more than 90 retail outlets across the Midwest.

Also among the honorees are 10 young alumni who are the recipients of the Early Achiever Awards. The Early Achiever Awards are given annually to alumni 30 years of age or younger who have achieved early success or have shown great potential in their chosen career fields.

Select abbreviated biographies are included below. A comprehensive list of the 2012 award winners and complete biographies can be found on the NAA website at

2012 Alumni Award Recipients (includes graduation year(s) and current city of residence)

Outstanding International Alumnus Award

Chan Cheong “CC” Puan, ’92, Petaling Jaya, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia, is the founder, CEO and managing director of the Green Packet Group of companies. Green Packet, a mobile broadband provider, serves more than 80 operators in 62 countries, and is Asia’s number one connection management software solution. Green Packet has received a Deloitte Technology Fast 500 Asia Pacific listing for two consecutive years.

Alumni Achievement Award

David Fleck, ’72, Brandon, S.D., is chairman of the board of Sioux Falls Construction Company, where his focus is projects to improve the infrastructure of the state. He serves on the board of the Association of General Contractors of South Dakota and AGC of America. Fleck helped found the South Dakotans for Nebraska alumni chapter.

Loretta Krause, ’61, Honolulu, is co-founder of the American Institute for Learning in Honolulu and is known as an innovator in multicultural education. Her institute improves literacy for English language learners and develops educational content for use with computers, cell phones and iPods. The American School Board Journal has selected Krause as an outstanding executive educator.

Kris Malkoski, ’83, Burr Ridge, Ill., is vice president, general manager of Craftsman, the popular tool and hardware company. She leads strategy, product development, marketing, sales, supply, cost management and globalization for this $2.2 billion brand. Malkoski is a recipient of Advertising Age’s “Top 25 Women to Watch” and has appeared on Good Morning America, NBC Radio and Lifetime Television.

Connie Schmaljohn, ’75, Middletown, Md., is the senior research scientist for Medical Defenses Against Infectious Disease Threats at the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases. Her research includes both basic and applied studies on highly pathogenic viruses. Schmaljohn is president of the International Society of Hantavirus Research and past chair of the American Society for Microbiology Biodefense Conference.

Dianne H.B. Welsh, ’88, Greensboro, N.C., is the Hayes Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship at the University of North Carolina Greensboro. A past president of the U.S. Association for Small Business & Entrepreneurship, she was a presidential appointee to the Board of Visitors for the U.S. Air Force Academy and a member of the Defense Advisory Committee for Women in the Services.

Distinguished Service Award

Rich Bailey, ’67, Lincoln, is the founder and retired chairman of Bailey Lauerman Marketing Communications, recognized by the American Association of Advertising agencies as one of the top six creative agencies in the nation in its size category. Rich was recognized previously as Ad Man of the Year by the ninth district of the American Advertising Federation.

James O’Hanlon, ’57, ’64, Lincoln, has been a faculty member at UNL since 1966. He has served as Dean of the Teachers College, associate vice chancellor for Extended Education, interim director of the Nebraska Alumni Association and the Durham School of Architectural Engineering and Construction, and interim dean of both the College of Engineering and the College of Architecture.

Doc Elliott Award

Jack Goebel, ’68, Lincoln, served UNL for 45 years as a professor of accountancy and business law, chair of the department of accounting, director of the Executive MBA program, dean of the College of Business Administration, vice chancellor for business and finance, associate chancellor and interim chancellor, and acting vice president for business and finance at Central Administration.

Additional Alumni Award Winners

• Family Tree Award - the William Nuckolls Family (five generations of UNL graduates)
• Cather Circle Alumna of the Year – Beth Klosterman, ’59, David City, Neb.

Young Alumni Achievement Awards

• William “Wally” Crittenden, ’10, College Station, Texas
• Amanda Mobley Guenther, ’08, Lincoln
• Steven Kaiser, ’10, Davey, Neb.
• Kristan Yoder, ’95, Lincoln

Early Achiever Awards

• Timothy Carmann,’06, Coralville, Iowa
• Dirk Chatelain, ’04, Omaha
• Neal Ely, ’07, Grafton, Neb.
• Garth Glissman, ’05, ’09, Omaha
• Laura Mertz, ’09, Columbus, Ohio
• Nathan Miller, ’05, ’07, Pasadena, Calif.
• Brooke Mullen, ’07, Lincoln
• Jeff Richmond, ’06, ’09, Shelby, N.C.
• Colby Thomson, ’04, ’05, Lincoln
• Chris Welch, ’07, Minneapolis

Student Award Winners

• Roy and Catherine Yaley Student Leadership Award – Sarah Schroeder, Columbus, Neb.
• Howard and Judy Vann Student Leadership Award – Kaitlyn Burke, North Vancouver, British Columbia; Tim Guenther, Lincoln.
• Shane Osborn Student Leadership Award - Brooke Herbig, Central City, Neb.
• Cather Circle Collegian of the Year – Lindsey Eastwood, ’10, Omaha
• Charlotte Kramer Foreign Study Scholarship – Yasmin Lopes, Omaha
• Jack Miller Scholarship – Elizabeth Erikson, Omaha; Chance Raichart, Benkelman, Neb.

The 2012 award winners were chosen by a selection committee of UNL alumni from across the country.

- Shannon Sherman, Nebraska Alumni Association

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