August 28, 2014
COB presents college-wide awards for coaching, creativity, and caring
Left to right: Dr. Doug Olson, Gail Nelson, and Teresa Wells
Three University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire faculty and staff members were recognized for their contributions to the College of Business in the areas of coaching, creativity and innovation, and culture of caring:
- Ms. Theresa Wells, senior lecturer in the Department of Management and Marketing, was the recipient of the 2014 Coaching Award. The award is presented to an employee who improved the performance of students, faculty, and staff through effective guidance, advising, or mentoring.
- Dr. Douglas Olson, professor, Department of Management and Marketing, was presented with the 2014 Creativity and Innovation Award. The award is presented to a faculty or staff member who generated novel and valuable ideas and used these ideas to develop new or improved processes, methods, systems, programs, or services.
- Ms. Gail Nelson, academic associate, Department of Accounting and Finance, was the recipient of the 2014 Culture of Caring award. The award is presented to an employee who demonstrated outstanding personal and professional service to College of Business employees and stakeholders.
College of Business Dean Diane Hoadley presented each recipient with an award and $500 at a college-wide meeting held Wednesday, August 27. The awards were funded by the emeriti members of the college’s Business Advisory Council.
COB Employee Award Recipients
Coaching Award: Theresa Wells, senior lecturer, Department of Management and Marketing
Terry Wells has coached and mentored hundreds of students since she arrived at UW-Eau Claire in 1999. Wells’ concern for her students comes across, whether she is explaining materials to a student in one of her ops courses, providing "tough love" to an advisee who hasn't been going to classes, reviewing a resume for a management major applying for an internship, or mentoring an officer in the student organization she advises. Wells always has the students’ interest at heart and she always wants them to succeed.
In addition to teaching operations management courses for the management and marketing department, and advising management students in the Center for Advising, Development and Enrichment, Wells is also the faculty adviser for APICS, an organization for students interested in operations/materials management. During her 21 years as the faculty adviser and mentor, the UW-Eau Claire student group has been named a national Gold Circle Chapter 14 times, and has been awarded the Platinum Circle Award nine times. Wells has had a profound impact on her APICS students—they seek her advice on career opportunities, they share personal achievements with her, and she is the first person they visit when they are on campus.
Wells has been recognized for her work as a coach and mentor locally and nationally. She has twice received the University Excellence in Advising award, and she is the recipient of campus and national student mentoring awards for her work with the UW-Eau Claire APICS chapter.
Creativity and Innovation Award: Doug Olson, PhD., professor of health care administration, Department of Management and Marketing
Doug Olson doesn't like to be told that something can’t be done. Instead, he sizes up a situation, rolls up his sleeves, and does whatever needs to be done to get an initiative up and running. An example of this was Olson’s idea to develop a center to bridge the gap between academics and practitioners in the senior care profession. Established in 2000 by Olson, the Center for Health Administration and Aging Services Excellence (CHAASE), is a unique partnership that combines the energy of academia with provider organizations and professional associations. While CHAASE provides financial and programming support to the UW-Eau Claire Health Care Program, the center also has a broader national agenda. CHAASE helps to advance policy change in the long-term care field, and helps to develop leaders in the profession through its focus on curriculum development, applied research, and professional development. The center shines as model for other HCAD programs across the country.
Another example of Olson’s creativity was his idea to seek financial support for UW-Eau Claire HCAD practicum students. Now all 40+ practicum sites provide an $18,000 annual stipend to students at their facility, thus reducing the financial burden to students undertaking this yearlong experience.
In recognition of these and other efforts to advance the long term care profession, Olson was named a fellow by his peers in the American College of Health Care Administrators. In 2014, he was awarded ACHCA’s prestigious Chair’s Award for his distinguished service to the organization for advancing emerging leadership initiatives such as a mentoring program, student poster sessions and a national leadership summit for new long-term care professionals.
Culture of Caring Award, Gail Nelson, academic associate, Department of Accounting and Finance
As the academic associate in the Department of Accounting and Finance for over 35 years, Gail Nelson has provided care and support to four department chairs, hundreds of faculty members and thousands of students. She has done this by being passionate about her job and exhibiting an extraordinary level of professional commitment.
While Nelson wears many hats, she consistently provides outstanding service to her colleagues who rely on her knowledge of university workflow, policies and procedures. She has proctored exams for them and graciously bailed them out during last minute emergencies. Countless times she has come to work early and/or stayed late to help out a faculty member or finish a project for the department.
Nelson shows a high level of care for students. She is always willing to help students with a problem and will stay late or come in early to help them resolve their issues. For example, a student, never thinking who might be around late Friday night, left a message asking for information she needed to attend a conference over the weekend. Nelson got the message and came back to campus Saturday morning to help the student out. Nelson also has a special talent for attracting and mentoring high quality student workers from across campus. Many of these students have stayed in contact with her long after they have graduated. She was and remains an important part of their UW-Eau Claire experience.