Indiana University Northwest Chancellor Bruce Bergland celebrated his 10th year at the university on Tuesday with 75 other campus employees who were honored at the annual Years of Service and Outstanding Employee Awards Luncheon in the Library Conference Center.
Joining the festivities was a group of senior IU administrators who traveled to the Northwest Indiana campus to congratulate Bergland on his milestone. IU President Michael McRobbie was in Washington D.C. and could not attend, but he sent his regards in a warm letter read by Chief of Staff Karen Adams.
“Your energy, commitment and clear-sightedness have made a transformative difference on the IU Northwest campus and throughout the entire university,” McRobbie’s letter stated. “Regardless of the situation, whether you were responding to the devastating flood which took place last fall, or the establishment of the College of Health and Human Services, or countless other challenges and opportunities, you bring a spirit of collaboration that considers both the best interests of the IU Northwest campus and the broader Gary community. You bring that brand of leadership that combines candor with integrity and experience, and this combination has made you a voice for change and progress.”
At the conclusion of Tuesday’s program, Adams presented Bergland with a commemorative clock in honor of his decade of service to IU Northwest. Earlier, the Chancellor had received his 10 Years of Service plaque from Human Resource Director Carolyn Hartley.
“We’re grateful, and we’re just delighted to be friends, and colleagues, and co-workers, and we wish you the very best,” Adams told the Chancellor.
Bergland, who did not know that his friends from downstate would be in attendance, thanked Adams, President McRobbie, and his IU and IU Northwest colleagues for their kind words and support. Other IU officials in attendance included: Vice President for Planning and Policy John Applegate; Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs Ed Marshall; Vice President for Engagement Bill Stephan; Vice President for Public Affairs and Government Relations Mike Sample; and IU Board of Trustees Secretary Robin Gress. Bergland’s wife, Cynthia Owen-Bergland, was also in attendance.
Bergland came to IU Northwest in July 1999 from Trinity College of Vermont, where he had served as vice president for academic and student affairs. One of his first priorities was to initiate a vigorous outreach effort to the local community, a process that continues today. Bergland also organized a steering committee of faculty, staff, students, and community members to develop a "shared vision" for the university's future goals as an educational institution and as an active stakeholder in the Gary and Northwest Indiana communities.
IU Northwest acknowledged all of its employees with five, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, and 35 years of service, a total of 76 faculty, staff and administrators. There were two 35-year recipients: Admissions Processor Angie Stojanovic and Registrar Jo Anne Bowen. Bowen’s time with IU was spent primarily in Bloomington, but she became IU Northwest’s registrar in 2007.
Thirty-year honorees included: Professor of Sociology Jack Bloom, Ph.D.; Professor of Fine Arts Neil Goodman, Ph.D.; Alumni Relations Director Paulette LaFata-Johnson; Professor of Finance William Nelson, Ph.D.; IT Programmer John Rudolph; IU School of Medicine – Northwest Lab Technician Robert Rukavina; Associate Professor of Business Administration Marilyn Vasquez; and Dental Education Senior Secretary Belinda Williams.
The university also honored this year’s Outstanding Faculty and Outstanding Staff winners. Assistant Professor of Psychology Karl Nelson, Ph.D. and Associate Professor of Educational Leadership Vernon Smith, Ed.D., were the co-recipients of the IU Northwest Founders’ Day Faculty Outstanding Teaching Award; Adjunct Professor Kathleen Forgey, Ph.D., received the Associate Faculty Outstanding Teaching Award. Assistant Professor of Political Science Marie Eisenstein, Ph.D., received the Outstanding Faculty Scholarship/Creativity Award, and School of Nursing Lecturer Marci Mulcahey received the Outstanding Service Activity Award.
Staff members honored Tuesday included: School of Business and Economics Senior Secretary Karen Peterson, who won the Outstanding Clerical Staff Award; Student Life Coordinator Scott Fulk, who won the Outstanding Professional Staff Award; IT Microcomputer Tech Velate Sullivan, who won the Outstanding Technical Staff Award; and Physical Plant maintenance employee Ben Cruz, who won the Outstanding Service/Maintenance Staff Award.
Adams extended congratulations to all of the day’s award-winners and service honorees.
“Thank you for your contributions to teaching and creative activity and the students on this campus,” she said. “I did mention to the President last night that you were honoring over 75 people with a cumulative total of about 1,100 years of service to this campus. Thank you so much to all of you for that effort that you contribute not only to IU Northwest but to the broader university. We are very grateful.”