UW-Eau Claire e-View newsletter


In This Issue

Celebrate Earth Day during first Eau Claire Eco Tour

Mathematics professor Andrew Balas dies

Devroy Forum to present Washington Post's Dana Priest

Alumna receives prestigious Milken Educator Award

Former prom king and queen share 61 years of married Blugold bliss

Two faculty members are 2008-09 Fulbright scholars

UW System Woman of Color Award goes to Rama Yelkur

Former Blugold player Matt Loen named men's hockey coach

Hmong Culture Fest, Honoring Education Pow-Wow set for
April 19

New alumni success stories

Blugold Trivia

Alumni Links

e-View archive

Alumni events

Blugold Babies

Photo album

'The View' online

Alumni success stories

Blugold e-postcards, screensavers

e-View survey


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April 2008

Celebrate Earth Day during first Eau Claire Eco Tour
Eau Claire Eco Tour graphicThe UW-Eau Claire Alumni Association invites alumni to participate April 26 in the first Eau Claire Eco Tour, a hiking, biking and canoeing tour of Eau Claire in conjunction with the city's Earth Day celebration. The tour will include:

  • a guided nature tour of Putnam Park with biology professor Paula Kleintjes-Neff and UW-Eau Claire biology students;
  • biking along the beautiful trails through campus, along the Chippewa River and through Eau Claire (including a stop at the city's Earth Day celebration in Phoenix Park); and
  • canoeing and kayaking on Half Moon Lake in Carson Park following a discussion about the lake's ecosystems with Douglas Faulkner and Harry Jol from UW-Eau Claire's department of geography and anthropology, UW-Eau Claire geography students and the university's Environmental Adventure Center staff.

Learn more about the Eco Tour and register by completing the online registration form. back to top

Dr. Andrew Balas
Dr. Andrew Balas

Mathematics professor Andrew Balas dies
Dr. Andrew J. Balas, UW-Eau Claire professor of mathematics and former chair of the mathematics department, died Wednesday, March 19, in Eau Claire after a yearlong battle with lymphoma.

Dr. Balas joined the UW-Eau Claire faculty 1984 as an assistant professor of mathematics. He was promoted to associate professor in 1989 and then to professor in 1997. During his 24 years at UW-Eau Claire, his areas of academic interest included differential geometry, complex analysis and teacher education. Read a full obituary and a Leader-Telegram life story about Dr. Balas. back to top

Devroy Forum to present Washington Post's Dana Priest

Dana Priest
Dana Priest

Dana Priest, a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter who broke the Walter Reed Army Medical Center outpatient care scandal for The Washington Post in 2007, will be the featured speaker at the Ann Devroy Memorial Forum April 24 at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

The 2008 Ann Devroy Memorial Forum is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. in Schofield Auditorium. The title of Priest's presentation is "Secrecy and the Media: A View From the Trenches."

Priest is a veteran reporter, serving 21 years at The Washington Post. She has written extensively on the CIA's covert counterterrorism operations, the CIA detention practices, intelligence lapses involving the Sept. 11 plot and the failure of pre-war intelligence in Iraq. Full story. back to top

Alumna receives prestigious Milken Educator Award

Wendy McCarron receiving award
Wendy McCarron received her Milken Educator Award March 30 from Milken Family Foundation co-founder Mike Milken at the foundation's 2008 National Education Conference in Los Angeles. (Milken Family Foundation photo)

Wendy McCarron, a 1992 UW-Eau Claire education graduate who now teaches mathematics at a high school in Georgia, recently won a national Milken Educator Award, which comes with a $25,000 award. McCarron, a teacher at Northview High School in Duluth, Ga., was among 75 outstanding educators from across the nation who received Milken Educator Awards during a gala March 30 in Los Angeles.

Dr. Dwight C. Watson, associate dean of the teacher education program in the College of Education and Human Sciences at UW-Eau Claire, describes the Milken Award as the "highest honor in education." Read more about McCarron's honor.

McCarron is the second UW-Eau Claire graduate to receive a Milken award in recent years. In 2003, James Doucette, a 1987 graduate of UW-Eau Claire, received the honor. He received a UW-Eau Claire Alumni Distinguished Achievement Award in 2004. back to top

Lee and Ruth (Baker) Mathison
Lee Mathison and Ruth (Baker) Mathison today and in their photos from the 1943 UW-Eau Claire Periscope.
Lee Mathison yearbook photo Ruth Baker yearbook photo

Former prom king and queen share 61 years of married Blugold bliss
It was February 1943 on the campus of the Eau Claire State Teachers College (now UW-Eau Claire) when Lee Mathison was named prom king and asked Ruth Baker to be his queen.

The prom was their first date, and shortly thereafter Lee left to serve with the 14th Armored Division in World War II. But the couple stayed in touch — it must have been a wonderful first date — and were married four years later. They eventually had two children and today have three grandchildren.

Read Lee and Ruth Mathison's complete story, and those of other Blugold couples, on the Blugold Bliss Web site. Follow the Blugold Bliss submission guidelines to share your Blugold bliss story. back to top

Two faculty members are 2008-09 Fulbright scholars

Mike Dorsher Jill Pinkney Pastrana
Dr. Mike Dorsher
Dr. Jill Pinkney Pastrana

Dr. Mike Dorsher, UW-Eau Claire assistant professor of communication and journalism, and Dr. Jill Pinkney Pastrana, associate professor of foundations of education, have been named Fulbright scholars for 2008-09.

The award will allow Dorsher to work from Montreal as the McGill University Research Chair in Health, Indigenous Populations, Media and Education. The title of Dorsher's research project is "Wal-Mart in the Media of Canada and the United States: From the Blogs of Arkansas to the Pages of La Presse."  Full story.

Pastrana will continue ongoing research with colleagues at the Catholic University of Valparaiso in Chile on neo-liberal education reform in that country. Full story.

The highly competitive and prestigious Fulbright Scholar Program sends 800 U.S. faculty and professionals abroad each year to lecture and conduct research. Dorsher and Pastrana are the third and fourth UW-Eau Claire faculty members to be named Fulbright scholars in the past year. Other recent Fulbright scholars are Dr. Kate Reynolds of the foreign languages and curriculum and instruction departments and Dr. Michael Penkava of the mathematics department. back to top

UW System Woman of Color Award goes to Rama Yelkur

Rama Yelkur
Dr. Rama Yelkur

Dr. Rama Yelkur, professor of marketing and coordinator of international business programs in the College of Business at UW-Eau Claire, received an Outstanding Woman of Color in Education Award from the UW System during a luncheon April 5 in Green Bay.

The UW System Outstanding Women of Color in Education Awards were initiated in 1994 to acknowledge the ties and shared concerns among administrators, faculty, staff and students within women's studies and ethnic studies, and to uphold a continuing commitment to Plan 2008: Education Quality through Racial and Ethnic Diversity. Full story. back to top

Matt Loen
Matt Loen

1990s player Loen named hockey coach
After leading the UW-Eau Claire men’s hockey program to one of its most successful seasons ever as interim head coach, former Blugold player Matt Loen has been named the permanent head coach following a national search.

More athletics news:
Blugold softball player Jenny Ross pitches the first perfect game in UW-Eau Claire softball history. Full story.

Loen played Blugold hockey under coach Ian Perrin from 1991 through 1995. The Spring Lake Park, Minn., native was the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association Player of the Year for the 1994-95 season. He was a two-time All-NCHA first team pick and also one of only four Blugolds ever named to the American Hockey Coaches Association All-American first team. With that award, he stands in the company of Blugold alumni Alex Hicks '04, Greg Robertson '90 and Mike Schwengler '94 as Blugold AHCA All-Americans. Full story. back to top

Hmong Culture Fest image
Honoring Education Pow-Wow image

Hmong Culture Fest, Honoring Education
Pow-Wow set for April 19
UW-Eau Claire's Office of Multicultural Affairs, along with various campus organizations, offices and departments, will sponsor the Hmong Culture Fest and the Honoring Education Pow-Wow on Saturday, April 19.

  • The 19th annual Hmong Culture Fest will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Council Fire Room, Davies Center. The event is an opportunity for the UW-Eau Claire community and general public to experience and learn about Hmong culture, food, arts, music and dance. Cultural workshops will occur throughout the day as well as a raffle drawing to win prizes. Journalist and human rights activist Thua Vang will present "Laos: The Lost Hmong" at 2 p.m.  Full story.
  • The 2008 Honoring Education Pow-Wow will be held in Zorn Arena. Doors to the event will open to the public at 11 a.m. Activities will include the grand entries at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m., with a feast at 5 p.m. Also scheduled are the fifth annual hand drum competition; the men's traditional special competition, sponsored by Dan Prescott; the men's fancy, grass and traditional dance contests; and the female fancy, jingle and traditional dance contests. Full story. back to top

Alumni success stories
Read about the accomplishments of these and other UW-Eau Claire alumni on the Alumni Success Stories Web pages:

Richard Saykally Richard Saykally '70, a UW-Eau Claire chemistry graduate, is the inaugural International Solvay Chair in Chemistry. Full story.
Karen Alexander Karen (Haas) Alexander '67, a UW-Eau Claire English and history education graduate, will receive the Family Caregiver Award from the Alzheimer's Association Wisconsin chapter at its May 4 conference in Milwaukee. Full story.
Dan Larson Dan Larson '03, a UW-Eau Claire communication graduate, has been named to the football coaching staff at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn. Full story.
UW-Eau Claire excellence seal Tony Duran '88, a UW-Eau Claire journalism graduate, took the March 20, 2008, People magazine cover and inside photos of entertainers Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony and their newborn twins. See cover photo. back to top

Blugold Trivia headline
Show how much you know about UW-Eau Claire — AND win great Blugold prizes! E-mail your answer to this month's question to the Blugold Trivia mailbox (trivia@uwec.edu). Those sending correct responses to this month's question will be entered in a drawing for a UW-Eau Claire golf ball holder and golf towel. The name of this month's Blugold Trivia winner will be published in the May issue of e-View.

April Blugold Trivia question:

Who was the first Eau Claire appointee to Wisconsin's Board of Regents of State Normal Schools? This person was influential in getting the state legislature to pass, in 1909, an act establishing a normal school at Eau Claire (which one day would become UW-Eau Claire). Hint: One of UW-Eau Claire's residence halls is named after this individual.

Know the answer? E-mail it, along with your name and class year, to trivia@uwec.edu. You'll be notified by e-mail if you are this month's winner!

Related links:
See a multimedia presentation by Eau Claire Leader-Telegram photographers about a day in the life of Blugold women's basketball head coach Tonja Englund.

See photos from the 2008 Blugold men's and women's alumni basketball games in the online alumni photo album.

March's winner:
Congratulations to Tim Scharbius, a 1992 UW-Eau Claire criminal justice graduate! Tim has won the March Blugold Trivia prize in a drawing from among those who correctly answered that the Blugold women's basketball team ended their 2007-08 season with a 23-7 record. back to top

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Last Updated: April 17, 2008 Questions/Comments: alumni@uwec.edu