DWU employees recognized for years of service, service awards

MITCHELL — Dakota Wesleyan University recognized a number of employees for their years of service to the institution during the annual Employee Recognition event held May 8, 2023.
The following employees were recognized for milestone anniversaries with the university.

Recognized for 40 years:
Beth Day, payroll specialist

Recognized for 20 years:
Vickie Gukeisen, administrative assistant for Advancement
Elwin Hohn, custodian

Recognized for 10 years:
Kevin Adams, maintenance technician
Dr. Ashley Digmann, chair, Department of Education
Fredel Thomas, vice-president for enrollment and marketing
Dr. Alisha Vincent, associate professor of Nonprofit Administration and director, Practical Church Leadership
Matt Wilber, head men’s basketball coach

Recognized for 5 years:
Dr. Krista Belanger, associate professor of Communications1
Sarah Burkel, IT systems analyst
Jan Larson, director of marketing and communications
Joel Reinesch, assistant professor of Criminal Justice
Dr. Penny Tilton, administrative chair, Department of Nursing and assistant professor of Nursing
Byron Warren, IT systems administrator
Dr. Melissa Weber, assistant professor of Education and coordinator of Master of Arts in Education
Matthew Zens, associate professor of Athletic Training

In addition, two employees were awarded the Dave and Ann Mitchell Faculty/Staff Award for Exemplary Service. The Mitchell Award recognizes the faculty or staff member who is involved in service to the community, who uses academic service-learning and/or community-based research and is dedicated to getting students involved in service.

Dr. Bethany Amundson, director of bands and instrumental studies, was the faculty member recognized for her work with high school bands across South Dakota. She has been an invaluable part of the marching band staff at Mitchell High School and served as president of the South Dakota Music Educators Association. Dr. Amundson has been an active participant with the DWU campus ministry chapel band and a member of the campus ministry Peru team for five years.

Julie Brookbank, associate director of communications, was honored as the staff recipient. Brookbank has been involved with many organizations in the Mitchell community including the Mitchell Community Scholarship Fund, the Avera Queen of Peace board of directors, the Mitchell Area United Way, Mitchell Area Community Theatre and several others. She participated in developing the Mitchell Forward 2040 plan, was a member of the Intelligent Communities group, and has reviewed grants and provided guidance to area organizations, political candidates and many special projects.