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The Most Recent News and Upcoming Events for UW-Superior Alumni.

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    As a physical education teacher at Evergreen Park World Studies School in Brooklyn Center, and Oxbow Creek Elementary School in Champlin, Joyce Spehar's class motto for her student is, "You are the best of the best." As one of the 10 winners of an Anoka-Hennepin School District "2012 Above & Beyond Award," Spehar can also claim that for herself.  

    Spehar, who grew up in Duluth and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Superior in 1978, is one of 10 school district staff to receive an award. The largest school district in Minnesota, Anoka-Hennepin has about 6,000 employees.  

    Spehar was nominated by Karlyn Bolander, a co-worker at EGP. Bolander said Spehar has a very close relationship with her "noodles" (students), genuinely cares for them and has high expectations for all.

    Bolander said Spehar has changed the track and field day to accommodate students' learning styles. Always ready with an encouraging word and an amazing, mentor to all, Bolander said Spehar is the most selfless teacher she knows. 

    Through her life, Spehar said she's been fortunate to have inspirational people in her life, such as her parents, who taught her kindness, compassion and how to empower others.

    Spehar lives these lessons by building positive relationships with her students and their families. Whether checking in with students both inside and outside of class, or calling a parent or guardian to praise their student's work ethic or great attitude, she works to build trust through open communication.  

    An all-conference volleyball and track athlete who competed at the collegiate level for UW-Superior, Spehar knew early on she wanted to be a physical education teacher because she loves sports and kids.

    She started her career teaching and coaching at the middle and high school levels. While working for the Anoka-Hennepin School District, Spehar made the change to teaching elementary students and didn't look back. A teacher at a number of elementary schools in the district, Spehar said teaching at EGP for the past 23 years has been a real privilege and she appreciates what she has learned during that time.  

    "I feel so fortunate and blessed to be working with such wonderful students and staff," Spehar said. "My job, from the heart, is to help students succeed, to let them know I sincerely care for their well-being and that I will not give up on them. I teach my students to do their best and be proud of what they do, while inspiring them to reach their full potential."  

    When Spehar learned she had won an Above & Beyond Award her first thoughts were of her mother who recently passed away.  

    "I thought, 'Hey mom, I did it,' " said Spehar. "I'd like to thank my parents for their support and encouragement over the years as I've taught. I'd also like to thank my twin sister, Joan, who teaches physical education at Champlin Park High School, for being an outstanding role model for me. She deserves this award just as much as I do."

    (Submitted by the Anoka-Hennepin County School District)


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    We're sorry to report that Steve Anderson, a member of the Yellowjacket men's hockey team that won the NAIA national championship for 1975-'76, died May 11 in Duluth.

    According to the Duluth News Tribune, Steve had been a golf-course manager and teaching professional at Cloquet Country Club, Lakeview National in Two Harbors, Enger Park Golf Course and the past three years at Duluth's Ridgeview Country Club. By all accounts, the 59-year-old Duluth native was highly regarded throughout the community.

    Steve was a member of the Class of 1976. He was inducted into the UW-Superior Athletic Hall of Fame in 2004.


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    The UW-Superior Alumni Association's Twin Ports/Northland Chapter is sponsoring a reception for UW-Superior alumni and friends from throughout the Twin Ports region at Tycoons Alehouse and Eatery, 132 E. Superior St. in Duluth!

    The cost per person is $10. Appetizers will be served and a cash bar available. Register online or call the Alumni Office at 715-394-8452. We hope to see you there!


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    Shotgun start at 1 p.m. This is a 5-person team scramble format. Cost per person is $75 ($50 per person for those with a current Nemadji Season Pass), which covers green fees, two carts per team, team awards, proximity prizes, gift, and dinner following the tournament.

    To register, call the UW-Superior Athletics Office at 715-395-4693.

    If you would like to be a hole sponsor, please fill out the Hole Sponsorship Form and submit it to the UW-Superior Athletic Department.


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  • 05/23/12--10:34: Dragonboat Tailgate BBQ
  • The UW-Superior Alumni Association's Twin Ports/Northland Chapter is sponsoring a Tailgate BBQ as part of the Dragonboat Festival on Friday, August 24, 2012 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. The event will be held at the end of Barker's Island at the UW-Superior team's site. Food and beverages will be served. Bring your family and friends! The cost per person is $10. Register online or pay at the event. For further information, please call the Alumni Office at 715-394-8452. We hope to see you there!


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    The UW-Superior Alumni Association's D.C./Northern Virginia Chapter is planning a series of events and tours from September 20 to 22. Please save the dates and look for more details shortly!


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    The UW-Superior Alumni Association's Twin Ports/Northland Chapter is sponsoring a reception for alumni and friends from throughout the region! Join us at Ace's in Superior - 2827 Oakes Avenue! The cost per person is $10. Appetizers will be served and a cash bar available. Register online or call the Alumni Office at 715-394-8452. We hope to see you there!


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    The All-American Red Heads, the first professional women's basketball team and the one-time team of Diane Martinson, Class of '75, has been chosen for induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

    Photos: Diane Martinson and the Red Heads

    The hall's 2012 induction class includes five-time NBA All-Star Reggie Miller, the NBA's all-time winningest coach Don Nelson, three-time National College Player of the Year Ralph Sampson, two-time Olympic gold medalist Katrina McClain, distinguished basketball official and coordinator Hank Nichols, former college and NBA star Jamaal Wilkes as well as the All American Red Heads. The induction ceremony is Sept. 6-8, 2012.

     

    Here's the story about Diane Martinson and the All-American Red Heads that appeared in the Fall 2011 edition of Superior Alumni:

    '75 grad enters hall of fame with All-American Red Heads

    An advertising poster offered Diane Martinson the first glimpse of a world she never imagined existed - women playing professional basketball against men.

    The poster was Martinson's first look at the All-American Red Heads, a barnstorming team of women who actually got paid to play basketball. Martinson was hooked. She went back to her residence hall room at UW-Superior and eagerly wrote a letter to the team's owner expressing her desire to play. That fall the Class of '75 graduate was part of the team.

    Last June, Martinson was among about 30 former Red Heads from various eras who gathered in Knoxville, Tenn., as their team was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame as "trailblazers of the game."

    The All-American Red Heads was established by owner C.M. Olson in 1936 as a novelty team that traveled around the country playing exhibition games against men's basketball teams. The team stayed in business for the next 50 years under Olson and later owner Owell Moore. Over the years the Red Heads played thousands of games and appeared on television's famous "Ed Sullivan Show" and in the pages of "Life" magazine.

    Martinson played with the Red Heads during the 1976-'77 season. Her squad -- there were two traveling teams -- played only men's teams, under men's rules. They played six to seven games a week for seven months as they roamed across 44 states.

    Players didn't need to actually have red hair to make the team, but they had to have it when they traveled with the team and played. Martinson was blessed with red hair, but said the color "got a little more dramatic" during her time with the Red Heads.

    In her biography posted on the All-American Red Heads tribute website, Martinson wrote, "I am honored and grateful to Mr. Moore for giving me a chance to perform and excel at a time when women had little or no opportunity to showcase their physical abilities among their peers. While pursuing his dream, he also showed the world that women could achieve a high level of competitiveness in strenuous sports. He opened a door. One that will never be closed."

    In the years following her involvement with the Red Heads, Martinson taught and coached basketball in public schools and with local youth organizations. Today she lives in Lonsdale, Minn.

    You can read more about the team at www.allamericanreadheads.com  and read Martinson's memories under the Player Bios link.

     

     


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    During their days at Wisconsin State University-Superior, Jeb Billet, Jimmy Brandt, Bruce Java, Mike Malcheski, and Richie Zawacki performed in the band East Wing.

    "The East Wing was created from four of the guys who lived on the east wing of the new Ross Residence Hall, next to Hawkes Hall," Malcheski said in an e-mail accompanied by several photos of the band in action. "I was the only 'west wing' guy."

    The band played events on campus as well as at University of Minnesota-Duluth and the College of St. Scholastica. They also played the Moose Lodge in downtown Superior and performed at other college parties in 1967 and 1968.

    But the life of a college musician wasn't all about parties.

    "The most memorable event was the time we played at the Diocese Children's Home to kids who had never heard live music before," Mike recalled. "It was heartrending (to be) signing autographs for orphans who thought we were superstars."

    After college, the guys moved on to other gigs. Bruce Java, for instance, ended up performing with The Thunderbirds -- not the band, but the U.S. Air Force flight demonstration team.

    For his part, Mike is still a working musician. He performs with Mr. Jitters in Green Bay, Wis. He notes that it's his eighth band in more than 49 years as a hobbyist musician.

    See more photos of East Wing performing


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    Jason MacDonald, Class of 2000, recently returned from Paraguay, where he traveled as part of a trade group to promote the international credit union movement.

    MacDonald, who majored in management information systems at UW-Superior, is now director of information technology for Central Minnesota Credit Union. He was among the representatives chosen by the Minnesota Credit Union Network and World Councils of Credit Unions to visit Asuncion, Paraguay, to promote credit unions.

    During the visit, MacDonald met with Paraguay's acting president and members of the cabinet to discuss the importance of credit unions and technology.

    The president, who is a credit union member, expressed his support for credit unions. He said strong and prosperous cooperatives are key to the country's continued economic growth.

    Read more about the visit 


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    UW-Superior posted a photo:

    Schonbrunn Palace in Vienna, Austria


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    UW-Superior posted a photo:

    Ship reaching Linz, Austria


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    UW-Superior posted a photo:

    St. Michael Tract - built in 1893 in Vienna, Austria


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    UW-Superior posted a photo:

    Touring the famous Saint Stephen's Cathedral built in the 12th century - Vienna, Austria


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    UW-Superior posted a photo:

    UWS professor Beth Gilbert and alumna Ann Rock overlooking Budapest


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    After 5 years of field research and writing, Dr. Albert Dickas, Professor Emeritus (Geology), has published a book on some of America's most interesting geologic sites. Titled 101 American Geo-Sites you've gotta see, the book was written for those who are curious in the multiple means whereby geologic processes continue to shape the world.

    Each state is represented by at least one site, explained by text and accompanying full color diagrams, maps and photographs. The two sites closest to the UW-Superior campus are the Thomson Dikes (to the west of Superior) and Amnicon Falls (to the south of Superior).

    Dr. Dickas joined the UW-Superior faculty in 1966 and retired in 1997. Positions held on campus included:

    • Professor of Geology

    • Founding Director, Center for Lake Superior Environmental Studies

    • Director, Office of Intramural Planning 

    • Founding Director, Youth Summer program 

    • Coordinator, UW-Superior/Rostov State University (USSR) exchange program

    • Associate Vice Chancellor, Contracts, Grants and Research

    • Adjunct member, Wisconsin Geological Survey


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