Each year, we ask our members to recommend colleagues who have made particularly important contributions to our cause as board members and as an association. Selecting a Board Member of the Year is difficult because we must pick from among very deserving individuals who come from very different colleges and boards, and from very different backgrounds and experiences.
We were honored to review the nominations for several really extraordinary members this year, and the committee would be proud to have selected any of the candidates.
The Board Member of the Year Award is based on four criteria: involvement at the district level, involvement at the state level, involvement at the national level, and the individual’s overall service through other contributions.
Bob has dedicated his life to education, first in K–12 administration before focusing on higher education with service to Mid-State and the Wisconsin Technical College System. Always assuming additional responsibilities, he acted as treasurer for four years of his service on the Board of Directors for Southwest Technical College between 1979–1985. On the Board at Mid-State Technical College since 1990, Bob achieved near-perfect attendance at meetings and events in the district and has spent over half of his 26 years of service in an officer role, including three years as chair and six years each as vice president and treasurer.
His exceptional leadership has also garnered many local and state awards from students, peers, and communities. Bob received;
Chief among his contributions, Bob led Mid-State’s efforts to partner with the Workforce Development Board to get businesses engaged and communicating with college staff. As a result, Mid-State was able to tailor its curricula to the needs of area employers such as Adams Columbia Electric Cooperative, Consolidated Paper, and others. Bob also implemented the first distance learning option for many K–12 schools in central Wisconsin, leading to providing thousands of area high schools students with opportunities for transcripted credits and even the adoption of telepresence technology at Mid-State. Bob has also been instrumental in promoting Mid-State dual-credit programs, resulting in significant savings for high school students.
At the state level, Bob served as a member of the Boards Association Board of Directors from 1995–2009, acting as president from 1997–99. He was also a WTCS Budget Committee Member in 2010–11. In the 1990s he led the development of an insurance consortium, saving the college thousands of dollars on insurance costs. As co-chair of the Legislative Committee from 2001 to present, Bob has devoted considerable time representing Mid-State and the WTCS at state and national capitals. On a first-name basis with legislators, Bob has influenced legislation that specifically benefits postsecondary education.
At the national level, Bob serves on a regional committee for ACCT and has made annual visits to Washington DC between 1996 and the present to attend the National Legislative Summit. Here he advocated for everything from Pell grants and student loans to adult basic education and workforce development.
Bob’s outstanding advocacy, passion for education, and unrelenting determination have built a legacy of service, having numerous positive impacts on technical college education.
|1978||Walter Calvert||Southwest WI|
|1979||Leah Rigler||WI Indianhead|
|1991||Joan Jenstead||Waukesha County|
|1995||Jerald Schoenike||Fox Valley|
|1997||Deborah Streuli||WI Indianhead|
|2000||Philip Baranowski||Moraine Park|
|1991||Ruth Mundt||Southwest WI|
|2005||David Logghe||WI Indianhead|
|2011||Vernon Jung||Moraine Park|
|2012||Russell Moyer||Southwest WI|
|2014||Ramona Mathews||Chippewa Valley|
|2016||Ramona Mathews||Chippewa Valley|