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Silver Lake College Honors Alumni Award Recipients
Silver Lake College honored nine people Friday night during its annual Alumni Awards Dinner.
Dr. Chris Domes, president of Silver Lake College, opened the program by welcoming more than 80 people who attended the event in the college’s main building. The alumni update was then presented by Don Geiger, Alumni Association board president. That was followed by a prayer given by Sister Elizabeth Ann Miller, Alumni Association board member.
Following dinner, descriptions and presentations of the awards were given by Jake Czarnik-Neimeyer, vice president of advancement and external relations; Cindy St. John, director of alumni and parent relations; Sister Lorna Zemke, director of graduate music; Sister Kay Klackner, director of teacher education; and Domes.
Award recipients included:
Mary Mowrer (1993 graduate), who received the Distinguished Alumni Award. Mowrer is a special education teacher for the Mishicot School District, where she has been employed since 1995. She also has spent many years coaching basketball, softball and volleyball. Before joining the Mishicot School District, she taught at St. Michael’s Catholic School in Whitelaw. Mowrer received an associate’s degree from UW-Marinette, a BSE from Silver Lake College and her master’s degree, in the area of At-Risk, from Marian University. Through her education at Silver Lake College, she obtained initial certification in Elementary Education (grades 1-8) and Learning Disabilities (Pre-K through grade 9). Mowrer also obtained additional certification at Silver Lake College in the area of Learning Disabilities for the secondary level.
Theresa Hrubecky (2004 and 2011 graduate), who received the Outstanding Recent Alumni Award. Hrubecky has been a special education teacher for the Mishicot School District since 2001. She also teaches fourth-grade religious education for Holy Cross Parish. Hrubecky received her BSE from UW-Oshkosh and her MA in special education at Silver Lake College. She obtained the following certifications through coursework taken at Silver Lake College: Cross Categorical, Learning Disabilities and Visual Impairments. She also works as an advocate for the Manitowoc County Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Center. Previously, she worked for the Manitowoc County Human Services Department as a social worker and a birth-to-3 early intervention special education teacher for nine years. For five years, Hrubecky and her family have hosted a child in the summer from Mississippi through the Project Self-Help and Awareness program. They also have hosted exchange students from Pakistan and France.
Therese Janssen (1962 graduate), one of two people who received the Alumni Award for Excellence in Servant Leadership. Janssen, who graduated from St. Therese School in Appleton in 1948, became an aspirant with the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity. She graduated from Holy Family Academy in 1952 and from Silver Lake College in 1962. Janssen was a member of the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity for 21 years (1952 to 1973). In addition, she received an MA in Education at Marquette University. Janssen taught at St. Boniface in Manitowoc, St. Joseph in Green Bay, St. Aloysius in Kaukauna, St. Joseph in Rice Lake, and St. Joseph and St. Mary in Rhinelander. She also held several other positions, including: Dean of Women at Belmont Abbey College in North Carolina; Director of Religious Education at St. Bartholemew Parish in Maryland; and sales representative and consultant for textbook companies Silver-Burdette & Ginn and later Glencoe/McGraw-Hill. The Appleton resident volunteers at LEAVEN, an ecumenical agency in the Fox Valley that offers emergency assistance. Janssen also helped to establish the Warming Shelter in Appleton, where she was the first volunteer coordinator for three years. She continues to serve on the Warming Shelter board of directors.
Sister Camilla Wolfgram (1964 graduate), OSF, one of two recipients of the Alumni Award for Excellence in Servant Leadership. Sister Camilla, who grew up in Appleton, is currently ministering at Silver Lake College as the assistant to President Dr. Chris Domes. She entered the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity in 1950. Training for teaching and administration ministries followed at Silver Lake College, the University of Notre Dame and the University of San Francisco. Sister Camilla ministered in education as a teacher and administrator for 46 years in the dioceses of Green Bay, Milwaukee, Tucson, Ariz., and Columbus, Ohio. She also currently serves on the Diocesan Catholic School Initiative Task Force and volunteers at Hope House, a homeless shelter in Manitowoc.
Sandra Eithun (1988 and 2013 graduate), who received the Alumni Award for Excellence in the Fine Arts. She received her M.M. Ed. Degree with an emphasis in the Kodály teaching method, keyboard and flute. She lives in New London, where she has been serving as Director of Music Ministry at First Congregational United Church of Christ since 1992. Eithun also is the director of the Silver Lake College Handbell Ensemble and is an active member of the Handbell Musicians of America. She’s a five-time winner of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers Plus Award, and has been commissioned to write music for many events and individual handbell ensembles. She recently completed a textbook for use in intermediate music classrooms titled “From Voice to Hands.”
John and Carol Sloma won the Distinguished Parents Award. They were married on Dec. 30, 1971, and have seven children, four of whom (Benjamin, 1997; Philip, 2003; Dominic, 2007; and Emma, 2014) have graduated from Silver Lake College. John has worked at Brillion Iron Works for more than 40 years and will be retiring as a journeyman patternmaker in June. He’s also the vice president of Local Lodge 516 of the IAM-AW in Manitowoc, and is the Grand Knight of Knights of Columbus, Elizabeth Ann Seton Council #5798, in Reedsville. John and Carol both came from faith-based families and have served their parish — formerly St. Mary’s in Reedsville and now Holy Family in Brillion. Carol is active in the RCIA program, teaches religious education and volunteers at Patrick’s Patches. John is a lector and a Eucharistic minister at Mass and for the homebound.
Lisa Brandl (2000 graduate), who received the Pre-Service Educator Mentor Award, which is sponsored by the Wisconsin Association of Colleges for Teacher Education. Brandl is a K-6 general music specialist in the Valders School District. She has accepted and nurtured pre-service teachers from Silver Lake College for both observation of classes and student teaching for the past 10 to 15 years. She uses a diversity of musical materials in her teaching by enriching the singing and literacy experience through Kodaly music pedagogy.
Josh Klopf (2012 graduate), who received the Early Career Educator Award, which is sponsored by the Wisconsin Association of Colleges for Teacher Education. Klopf is the kindergarten teacher and director of technology at Holy Rosary Catholic School in Medford. The principal at Holy Rosary Catholic School said registration for kindergarten at Holy Rosary is at an all-time high — thanks in large part to Klopf’s performance in his first year of teaching.