Alumni Profiles

Mary Jo Merwin
1969-70

About Mary Jo
  • Administrator, Aurora Health Care, Fond du Lac
  • Bachelor of Science, Nursing
  • Master of Science in Organizational Leadership and Quality
  • Registered Nurse

“Attending the Fond du Lac campus was one of the best decisions for me. The professors that I had were outstanding and the small class size allowed for the individual attention that is so important, especially when you are just beginning your college experience.

The ability to live at home and continue with my part time job, gave me one more year to save for college. I made life long friends while attending the Fond du Lac campus and, for that, I will always be grateful.”

Don Noe
1969-71

About Don
  • Retired Chief Meteorologist, WPLG Channel 10 in Miami, Florida
  • Bachelor of Science Degree in meteorology from UW-Madison
  • 2005 UW-Fond du Lac Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient

Don’s first job out of college was forecasting the weather in the Green Bay area for radio stations, ski resorts, power companies and show removal crews while working weekends for television station, WFRV-TV.

Don estimates he has done over 780 school visits during more than 30 years of service to schools in Wisconsin, Oregon and Florida. He presents lectures on science and weather to elementary, secondary and high school students. He has received numerous awards including the Silver Circle Award for 28 years of excellence in broadcasting by the Florida Suncoast Chapter of National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in 2001.

Lyle J. Birschbach
1970-72

About Lyle
  • Agent for American Family Insurance since 1975
  • Bachelor’s degree, Business Administration from UW-Oshkosh 1974

“The Fond du Lac campus allowed me the opportunity to go to college, since I had to work and pay for my schooling and was married at the time. Today, I look around and see many of the great people that I got to know during my two years at the campus, and how successful they have become in their occupation. I appreciate my time at the campus today more than I did when I first left the Fond du Lac campus.”

Robert Carew
1973-74, 1975-76

About Robert
  • President and Publisher, Action Advertising, Inc.
  • Publisher, The Reporter
  • Retired
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism, UW-Oshkosh, 1978
  • 2007 Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient

Bob’s notable career in the newspaper and printing business began over 38 years ago. Throughout high school and while attending the Fond du Lac campus, he worked at Action Advertiser and Action Printing. He assisted his father, Jim Carew, founder of Action Advertising, Inc., and other family members by setting type, designing and selling advertising, collecting and writing news and running a printing press.

With his family, Bob created a community newspaper which became the first free newspaper in history to win back-to-back General Excellence or Best of Show awards from the Association of Free Community Papers as the best free newspaper in North America. Action Advertiser has captured that award over 20 times and recently won the award for an unprecedented sixth straight year.

The printing division of Action Advertising, Inc. has received the National Association for Printing Leadership’s Gold Top Management Award seven out of the past nine years.

Gannett purchased Action Advertising, Inc. in 2002 and Bob remained as president and publisher at Action. Last year, Bob was also named publisher of The Reporter.

Bob’s involvement in the community is wide reaching. He has served on the board and was the chairman of the Fond du Lac Area Association of Commerce, has served as chairman of Walleye Weekend, is a member of Fond du Lac Noon Rotary where he was awarded the prestigious Paul Harris Fellowship for exemplary service to his community, has served as a director of National Exchange Bank and Trust since 1995 and was a member of and served as president of the Fond du Lac Foundation Board.

Mark Kohl
1975-77

About Mark
  • Teacher Lodi High School
  • 2005 Wisconsin Teacher of the Year Award Recipient

Mark Kohl has taught history and communications at Lodi High School near Madison for the past 23 years before being chosen as the 2005 Wisconsin Teacher of the Year. In addition to his classroom work, Kohl has directed the district’s forensics program, is a founding member of the Lodi Stepping Stones Theater, works with the Friends of the Arts group and volunteers with the Lodi Challenger 4-H organization.

Mark R. Strand
1976-78

About Mark
  • Chief Deputy/Undersheriff – Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Office
  • Bachelor’s Degree – UW-Oshkosh
  • Master’s Degree – Marian College (University)
  • 2010 Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient

Strand is Chief Deputy/Undersheriff with the Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Office, a position he has held since 2006.

He began his career in the Sheriff’s Office as a correctional officer in 1981. He served as a patrol officer from 1983 to 1992 when he was appointed Sergeant. In 1997, Strand was promoted to Lieutenant and in 1999 was promoted to Jail Administrator. He has served as a K-9 officer, Dive Team leader, Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Boat Patrol supervisor and serves on numerous law enforcement promotion boards.

Strand and his wife of 31 years, Mary, have three sons. Dustin is a United States Deputy Marshal, Brandon is a legislative assistant to a State Senator and Jordan recently graduated from UW-Milwaukee. Dustin and Jordan also attended the Fond du Lac campus.

Lynn Roethke
1979-80, 1993-94

About Lynn
  • Owner, Club Olympia in Fond du Lac
  • 1988 Olympic Silver Medalist
  • Bachelor’s Degree – Marian College

In a career that began in 1967, Lynn reigns as one of the most accomplished American women judo athletes in the history of the sport. She was recently awarded the rank of seventh degree black belt which makes her the highest rank holder for Judo in Wisconsin and one of only three women holding this rank in the United States.

She is also winner of a silver medal in the 1987 World Championships, a two-time gold medalist in the Pan American Games, a ten-time U.S. National Champion, a gold medalist in two U.S. Open Championships and a five-time gold medalist in the Olympic Festival. She was selected by the U.S. Olympic Committee as “female athlete of the year” in the sport of judo in 1985 and 1987.

Lynn was the UW-Fond du Lac Commencement speaker in May 2008.

“One reason I chose the Fond du Lac campus for my education was the smaller class sizes. Rather than feeling like just another fish in a big pond, I was able to develop more personal interaction with the faculty and other students. This took our learning beyond lectures and tests. My professors were able to incorporate creative styles of teaching that embraced the students background, abilities and interests.

Some of the best educators I have experienced taught at the Fond du Lac campus. This creative teaching style has influenced the development of my own teaching  in working with my Judo students, personal training clients, and clients at Club Olympia. I try to see their individual  abilities, help them envision their goals and the process that can get them there. If we can find the passion, the excitement and the fun of learning along the way, then I know my students and I are on the right track.”

Craig Larson
1978-81

About Craig
  • UW-Fond du Lac Soccer Coach
  • Bachelor of Arts Degree in Geology, UW-Oshkosh

“My college years at the Fond du Lac campus were the best years of my life. The soccer team allowed me to discover myself and who I was at that time in my life. Friends that I made on the team and on campus are still life friends and some very good friends have since passed on. Somehow soccer has driven me to experience the sport around the world, nationally, and locally here in Fond du Lac.

Some of the teachers and my coach will never be forgotten for what they did for me in class and on the field. The UW experience of Fond du Lac is a school where you cannot get lost, and the teachers are there to help and mentor. My son will be attending. I hope to coach him here.”

Bill Lamb
1986-88

About Bill
  • Chief of Police, City of Fond du Lac
  • 2012 UW-Fond du Lac Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Administration of Justice – Marian University

Lamb is a 23-year veteran of the law enforcement profession. On June 30, 2011, Lamb was sworn in as the Chief of Police for the City of Fond du Lac, during one of the most challenging times in the history of the department as it was in the process of healing and recovering from the loss of Officer Craig Birkholz who was killed in the line of duty in March 2011.

Born and raised in Fond du Lac, he attended the Fond du Lac campus from 1986 through 1988. He then transferred to UW-Oshkosh and later to Marian University where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Administration of Justice. He is a graduate of the 209th session of the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia.

Over the course of his law enforcement career Lamb has worked as a patrol officer, investigator, narcotics task force officer, patrol commander, deputy chief of police, operations commander, and police chief. He has also held a number of specialized assignments and responsibilities including the positions of field training officer and unified tactics instructor. In addition to his duties as North Fond du Lac’s Police Chief, he was twice appointed to serve as the interim village administrator in North Fond du Lac.

Lamb is a past-president of the Wisconsin Chapter of the FBI National Academy Association as well as the Fond du Lac County Law Enforcement Executive’s Association. He currently serves as an executive board member of the Wisconsin Chiefs of Police Association.

Locally, he serves on the YMCA Board of Directors and is a member of the Knights of Columbus and Fond du Lac Noon Rotary. He has previously served as a board member of the Fond du Lac County Chapter of the American Red Cross and the ASTOP Sexual Abuse Center.

Joseph Braun
1993-94

About Joseph
  • Director of Finance & Development – Fond du Lac Area Foundation
  • Bachelor’s degree – Marian College
  • Master’s degree – Marian College

“I feel that the time I spent at the Fond du Lac campus was very beneficial to me. At a time when I was unsure what path I aspired to take in life, the UW afforded me structure and an excellent small campus atmosphere to begin my post high school life.”

William B. Everson
1997-98

About William

Attorney, Everson & Gibbs, LLC

  • Bachelor of Science, History, UW-Oshkosh
  • Juris Doctorate, Thomas Cooley Law School, Lansing, Michigan

After high school, the Fond du Lac campus allowed me to adjust to my first college experience more easily because of the small class sizes and the individual attention given by all of my professors. I not only enjoyed the classes, but also the camaraderie of the students.  We often got together in the student center and played foosball and cards.

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Dan R. Bell
1969-71

About Dan

District Sales Manager, The Vollrath Company LLC, Sheboygan, Wisconsin

  • Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS), UW-Oshkosh 1985
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA) – Cardinal Stritch College 1990

Having been with Vollrath for 23 years, Dan travels throughout the Midwest and Western United States for the OEM Division. Dan is also a member of the Mayville EMS and served 10 years as a Mayville Police/Fire/EMS Commissioner.

Dan is also a Incident Commander and Helicopter Operations Forest Fire Fighter for the US Fish and Wildlife Service and a veteran of 6 Western Wildfires. As the Director of Homeland Security for the Wisconsin Wing Civil Air Patrol, Dan holds the rank of Lt Colonel and is a member of the Wisconsin Military Sub Commission on Homeland Security.

An avid actor, Dan has starred or co-starred in numerous dramas and musicals for the Beaver Dam Area Community Theatre and has starred and co-starred in 30 Independent Films winning four classic “Telly” award statuettes.

At the Fond du Lac campus, Dan played the role of Dr. Gibbs in the Theater Department’s 40th anniversary production of “Our Town” in November 2008 and co-starred in the film “Birthday Girl” produced by Frances Perkins, a Fond du Lac campusprofessor, in June 2009.

“I was on the first varsity Soccer team for UW (then WSU) Fond du Lac in 1969 and again in 1970, being awarded All Conference status as a Left Fullback in the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference (WCC) at the end of that season. I also wrestled for two years earning a total of four (4) varsity letters (2 soccer, 2 wrestling). Great memories with great fellow students and athletes.”

Jim Neumann
1971-73

About Jim

CEO and Second Generation Owner, RB Royal Industries, Inc. of Fond du Lac

Jim Neumann is active on many Fond du Lac area non-profit boards. He also serves on the board of Fox Valley Savings Bank of Fond du Lac, National Fluid Power Association and Precision Machined Products Association. He was previously a member and president of the UW-Fond du Lac Foundation Board of Directors.

He received a Wisconsin Family Business Forum Fellowship at UW-Oshkosh and the Rotary International Paul Harris Fellowship.

“Having been active for decades in the greater Fond du Lac business community has given me the opportunity to meet many successful people who started their college studies at the Fond du Lac campus. When I have discussions with Fond du Lac campus alumni, and we speak of our time here, there is a recurring theme. The close proximity of the University to where we lived and worked made it very convenient for many of us to attend.

We benefitted from the intimacy of a smaller institution by having more ready access to the faculty and staff. Some commented that they would have struggled in their freshman year if they had to make the leap to a huge campus with thousands of students. Additionally, having a state university campus here in Fond du Lac provides  all those intending to further their education the valuable opportunity to CHOOSE where best to initiate that ambition.”

 

Paul Rosenfeldt
1974-76

About Paul
  • Partner at Edgarton, St. Peter, Petak & Rosenfeldt Law Office
  • 2006 Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient

Rosenfeldt attended the Fond du Lac campus from 1974 to 1976 and then went on to UW-Stevens Point. He then continued his education at Marquette University, earning his law degree in 1987.

Rosenfeldt is currently practicing in the areas of business law, commercial litigation and municipal law.

He is recognized for his many contributions to community organizations in our local area including the YMCA, Exchange Club and Lutheran Home Board. A member of the Fond du Lac Foundation Board of Directors until 2004, Rosenfeldt held various positions on the Board over a period of 17 years

Terri McCormick
1975-78

About Terri
  • President, McCormick Dawson CPG, Ltd.
  • Former Wisconsin State Representative

Terri grew up in Fond du Lac and holds a bachelor’s degree in political science – Magna cum Laude from UW-Oshkosh. She also holds a master’s degree in administrative leadership.

Representative Terri McCormick was elected to the WI Legislature in 2000, and self term limited in 2006. Prior to government service, she founded the Leadership Solutions Institute (1998), Educational Consultants, Ltd. (1996), and Education Services, Inc (1992). Education Services, Inc was the spring board to McCormick’s founding of the Wisconsin Charter School Association as well as her pioneer legislation founding Charter Schools in the state of Wisconsin

She is currently president of McCormick Dawson CPG, Ltd., a consulting firm which brings public policy, private business and non profit business development experience to national and international markets.

Teri was the Fond du Lac campus Commencement speaker in May 2006.

Paul Thelen
1977-98

About Paul
  • Director of Liturgy and Music, Holy Family Catholic Community
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Music – Silver Lake College
  • 2014 UW-Fond du Lac Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient

Paul has been involved with many Fond du Lac Community Theater productions, often provides accompaniment for musical theater shows at local schools and is an accompanist for Fond du Lac High School, Marian University, St. Mary’s Springs Academy and Woodworth Middle School. He was also an accompanist for the Fond du Lac campus for several years.

Paul is a regular performer with several local bands including The Downtowners, The Lighthouse Big Band and Just the Two Of Us. He has appeared with the Fond du Lac Symphonic Band, the South Shore Chorale and the Fond du Lac Chamber Singers.

He and his wife, Julie, have three daughters – all three are musicians and two of them also attended the Fond du Lac campus.

In addition to his community involvement as a musician, Paul works with Adult Care Consultants and Fond du Lac County Social Services in providing transition housing for those moving back to the community from half-way houses or institutions. He grew up in New Holstein.

“I was at the Fond du Lac campus just a year, but I am happy where I am now, and successful, and that was a huge piece. It was the start of my college career and essential to what I do now.”

Diane Weider
1978-80

About Diane

Specific Learning Disabilities Teacher at Fond du Lac High School; SWAT TEAM Advisor; Class Advisor

  • Bachelor of Science in Special Education from UW-Oshkosh in 1983
  • Dually certified to teach Cognitively Disabled and Learning Disabled Students

Has received a number of awards from the Jaycees including:

  • 1990 National Speak-Up Competition
  • 1993 Statesman Award
  • 1995 Outstanding Young Wisconsinite
  • 1996 Ambassador Award
  • 1999 Senator Award
  • 2003 Teacher of the Year through the Noon Optimists
  • 2004 Arc Educator Award
  • 2004 Woman of the Year for Covenant U.M.C.
  • 2004 ING Unsung Heroes Award

“I developed a great sense of who I am at the Fond du Lac campus. I was able to ease into college life and participate in extra-curriculars. The size of the classes made it easy to develop a rapport and working relationship with the teachers. I loved my two years at the campus.”

Jeff Kottke
1982-84

About Jeff
  • Regional Manager – Solutions, Xerox Corporation, Brookfield, WI
  • Bachelor’s Degree – Business Administration, Finance & Marketing, minored in Philosophy – Marquette University

“My time at the Fond du Lac campus was fantastic in preparing me for my time at Marquette. It fostered my interest in philosophy, and really acclimated me to college life! I had GREAT professors, and the learning environment was great for me! I’d recommend it to anyone starting a college career! Oh, and I met my wife there!”

Bobbi Miller
1991-95

About Bobbi
  • Business Services Manager, Fox Valley Workforce Development Board, Neenah, WI
  • Bachelor of Business Administration, UW-Oshkosh, 1997, Summa cum laude

“Attending the Fond du Lac campus as a non-traditional student was a wonderful experience that helped prepare me for success. The staff at the Fond du Lac campus had high expectations for students and enabled students to meet course expectations.  Because of the small campus size, it is possible for students and staff to engage in a relationship building process that increases overall success.

While I ultimately majored in human resources, the education I received has allowed me to work in other professional capacities due to understanding collaborative efforts, critical thinking, and strategic planning. As our country continues to face changing workforce challenges, the education I received is integral in providing the framework that allows me to embrace continuous education and change.”

Linda Trent
1993-96

About Linda

“I chose UW-Fond du Lac as a returning adult student because of the flexible class schedule, small class sizes and affordable tuition. I had been out of school for 10 years and thought that because the Fond du Lac campus is a small two-year college, that would be a good transition for me.

I graduated with my associate degree in 1996. The staff and advisors were friendly and willing to make themselves available anytime for their students, which I really appreciated. Since leaving the Fond du Lac campus, I have received my bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Edgewood College and I am currently pursuing my master’s degree in Servant Leadership from Viterbo University.

The Fond du Lac campus gave me a solid foundation that led to my success academically and my advocacy for human issues at Edgewood College and Viterbo University.”

Jon Fox
1997-99

About Jon
  • Senior Manager – Materials at Frontier Airlines
  • Bachelor of Science, Business Administration, Marian College
  • 1998 Excellence in Student Government Award (from SGA peers)
  • 1999 Dean’s Leadership Award

The time I spent at the Fond du Lac campus allowed me to grow and mature. The leadership experience of being involved as Senator, Vice President, and President of the Student Government Association is something that is unforgettable. The class sizes were the perfect size to learn one on one, know the professor and not be just a number.

Hussein Sharif
2004-06

About Hussein
  • Senior Front-End Engineer – WebMD
  • MBA – Oxford University (2015-2016)
  • Bachelor’s Degree – UW-Madison (2006-2008)
  • Associate Degree – Fond du Lac campus (2004-2006)

“The Fond du Lac campus offered manageable class sizes, affordable tuition and the ability to learn and grow in a more intimate student environment. I transferred to UW-Madison to earn my bachelor’s degree. After graduation from Madison, the high-quality of my education remained the same as my peers, but my student loan burden was significantly lower.

After college, I was able to pursue a career in consulting with the federal government which took me all over the world, to nearly 30 countries. I was also able to serve my country as a civilian in Afghanistan, an experience unrivaled by any other that I have had. Today, I work as a web programmer for a multi-national health organization and I will soo be going to Oxford University in order to complete my MBA.”

 

University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Fond du Lac Campus
400 University Dr
Fond du Lac, WI 54935
  (920) 929-1100