Alumni and friends were honored for their professional and philanthropic achievements this month as the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater observes its 144th anniversary at Founders Day. The annual Founders Day event was held Saturday, April 21, at 11 a.m. in the James R. Connor University Center. Four current students also will be recognized as they complete their junior year on campus with outstanding grades and deep involvement in campus life.
This year’s S.A. White Award goes to H. Gaylon and Hannah M. Greenhill for their many contributions to UW-Whitewater. Gaylon Greenhill served as chancellor from 1991-1999, transforming the campus through the Excellence for the 21st Century campaign. Their generosity established the Greenhill Endowment, which funds arts scholarships and an education scholarship, and they are supporters of athletics and the Young Auditorium.
The award is named for Samuel A. White, a judge who was instrumental in the founding of the Whitewater Normal School, which later became UW-Whitewater, in April 1868.
Other honorees and their awards are:
- Andrew Burish, Distinguished Alumni Award for Professional Achievement. A 1982 MBA graduate, Burish is a managing director at UBS Financial Services and leads The Burish Group, which has offices in Madison, Milwaukee and Chicago. His team manages more than $1.8 billion in client assets and Burish is frequently recognized as a top financial adviser nationally and in Wisconsin.
- James Lindenberg, Distinguished Alumni Award for Professional Achievement. Lindenberg is a 1981 graduate who built and sold a successful business, World Class Wire and Cable, and continues as an entrepreneur with Lindy Enterprises, a business consulting firm, and JML Holdings, a real estate investment business in Waukesha County. He also owns the Milwaukee Wave, the city’s indoor soccer team, and is president of its charitable arm for children.
- Michael Spellman, Distinguished Alumni Award for Service to UW-Whitewater. A 1969 graduate, Spellman later served as assistant chancellor for development and public relations and as executive director of the UW-Whitewater Foundation. Nearly $60 million was raised for the university during Spellman’s tenure as his vision of the future campus inspired benefactors who made it a reality.
- Melvin Juette, Distinguished Alumni Award for Community/Regional Service. Juette, a 1992 graduate, was a leader in wheelchair basketball at UW-Whitewater and became the first Warhawk chosen for the national team. He created a foundation to support recreation for people with disabilities and will be an assistant basketball coach this summer for the USA National Paralympics team in London.
- Michelle Maurer Nimmo, Outstanding Recent Alumna Award. After graduating in 2000 with a marketing degree, Nimmo used a business plan written in class and purchased Anasazi Spa and Salon in Janesville. After its success, she sold the spa and salon business to move into the medical spa industry, and Anasazi Medical Spa is poised for expansion.
This year’s Outstanding Juniors at UW-Whitewater will receive $1,000 scholarships from the UW-Whitewater Alumni Association. They are:
- Jocelyn Sveum, Edgerton, who is majoring in early childhood education in the College of Education and Professional Studies and has dreamed of being a teacher for as long as she can remember.
- Valerie Jach, Brookfield, an accounting and finance major in the College of Business and Economics and a Warhawk soccer player who would love to work for the Green Bay Packers.
- Megan Kell, Burlington, who is majoring in choral and general music education with a minor in secondary math education in the College of Arts and Communication. She plans to earn a master’s degree, teach music and serve as a mentor to young musicians.
- Samantha Pratt, Muskego, a history and Spanish major in the College of Letters and Sciences who looks forward to being a role model for her students and encouraging constructive debate in her classroom.