Alumni Association to honor 7 graduates for achievement, service at Homecoming banquet
09/18/2003

Three Alumni Achievement Awards, three Young Alumni Awards and a Nita M. Landrum Award will be presented by Fort Hays State University's Alumni Association at the Alumni and Endowment Awards Reception and Banquet Oct. 3.

The 2003 Alumni Achievement Award recipients are Rose M. (Petracek) Arnhold, chair of the Department of Sociology and Social Work at FHSU, who earned degrees from FHSU in 1963 and 1969; Dr. Michael A. Bogan, a 1966 graduate and a wildlife research biologist for the U.S. Geological Survey and project leader for Arid Land Studies and a research professor of biology at the University of New Mexico; and Marilyn (McGuire) Snider, a 1964 graduate who is owner and president of Snider and Associates, a strategic planning and team building facilitation corporation.

The Alumni Achievement Award is given on the basis of outstanding, unselfish contributions in service to community, state or nation, both as citizens in their chosen careers and through philanthropy.

The 2003 recipients of the Young Alumni Award are Dr. Robert B. Channell, assistant professor of biological sciences at FHSU, who earned FHSU degrees in 1990 and 1992; Kelli M. Donley, a 1993 FHSU graduate who is a captain and judge advocate in the U.S. Air Force; and Doug J. Palen, 1993, who is owner and manager of Palen Family Farms in Glen Elder.

The Young Alumni Award recognizes 10- through 15-year graduates for professional and educational achievement, community activities, honors and awards or other accomplishments since graduation.

Lon E. Pishny, who earned degrees from FHSU in 1971 and 1979 and who founded Pishny Financial Services, L.C., in Garden City, will be awarded the Nita M. Landrum Award for 2003.

The Landrum Award recognizes alumni or friends who have provided sustained volunteer service for the betterment of the Alumni Association, or the university, in their communities.

The FHSU Alumni Association, established in 1916, is dedicated to identifying and serving the needs of more than 37,000 graduates living throughout the United States and 61 foreign countries. The association's mission is to develop lifelong relationships between the university and its alumni and friends.

Rose M. (Petracek) Arnhold
Rose M. (Petracek) Arnhold received both a bachelor of arts degree in sociology and history and master's degree in sociology from FHSU in 1963 and 1969 respectively.

Kenneth Havner, Hays attorney and former Kansas Regent, said, in a letter supporting Arnold's nomination for the Alumni Achievement Award, "Life for women in northwest Kansas and possibly all of Kansas would not be as secure today but for the pioneer groundbreaking efforts of Rose Arnhold for the past three decades."

Throughout that time, Havner said, Arnhold remained "a loyal and dedicated servant to her alma mater, Fort Hays State University."

She began her teaching career as a sociology and psychology teacher at Hays High School from 1963-1968, also serving as chair of the Social Science Division.

Her career at FHSU began as an instructor of sociology in 1968. She was promoted to assistant professor in 1972 and finally to associate professor in 1980. Arnhold assumed the duties of chair of the Department of Sociology and Social Work in 1997.

Arnhold's interest in social ills has been demonstrated in several articles she has written for various publications. The topics range from "The Reality of Rape" to "A Study of the Social Participation of the Non Employed Wife of the Working Class Husband in Hays, Kansas."

Dr. Richard Heil, chair of the Department of Political Science and Justice Studies at FHSU, writing in support of Arnhold's nomination, cites Arnhold's caring ways not only in the classroom but also in the community.

"Her impact on others extends far beyond the classroom. She has been instrumental in developing community organizations and institutions to assist people as they face crises in their lives," he said.

"She has the unique capacity to care about people as individuals but also people in groups and to battle injustice and discrimination in all its forms. The democratic creed of the dignity of the individual has a true champion in Rose Arnhold."

Arnhold has received numerous awards and honors. She was the Pilot Award recipient at FHSU in 1976, was selected as one of six university professors to teach in the first Regents Honor Academy in 1987, was named Outstanding Woman of the Year by Business and Professional Women in 1987, was recognized by Edward D. Jones for outstanding contributions to the Hays community in 1988 and was named Kansas Professor of the Year by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) in 1988. She is a longtime member of the Midwest Sociological Society.

Arnhold and her husband, Gerald, live in Hays. They have one daughter, Cheryl Williams.

Michael A. Bogan
Bats are central to the career of Michael A. Bogan, who received his bachelor of science degree in biology in 1964 from Baker University before coming to Fort Hays State, where he obtained his master of science degree in zoology in 1966. From here he went to the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, where he earned his Ph.D. in biology in 1973.

Bogan has many accomplishments in the study of mammals since starting out as research wildlife biologist and curator with the Fish and Wildlife Service at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, between 1973-81.

His present positions are wildlife research biologist for the U.S. Geological Survey, project leader for Arid Land Studies and research professor of biology at the University of New Mexico.

"On almost a day-to-day basis, Mike is sought out as an expert by staff at Fish and Wildlife refuges, National Park Service resource people, Bureau of Land Management folks, etc.," said Dr. Eugene Fleharty, professor emeritus of biology at FHSU, supporting Bogan's nomination.

"They know of Mike's work, his employment as a research biologist with the
Department of the Interior, and know that their request will be dealt with," said Fleharty.

"Mike is also frequently sought out as a speaker on mammals in general and bats in particular. He likes to do this with younger people to show them good things about bats and hopefully get them interested in biology," said Fleharty.

As a wildlife research biologist, his responsibilities include conducting research and syntheses on bats, acting as an agency expert on bats, small mammals and taxonomy, supervising staff at the Albuquerque Field Station and serving as curator of a federal collection of vertebrates.

Bogan also serves as research professor of biology at the University of New Mexico,
where he advises graduate students on mammal research and teaches classes.

Along with making numerous technical presentations and reports for organizations across the United States, Bogan has also been invited to lecture at various universities as well as provide technical training in the study of mammals.

He has published dozens of articles in scientific journals on topics ranging from wind training in prairie trees to the status of the Texas kangaroo rat.

Recognition for his hard work includes a Quality Performance Award and an Outstanding Publication Award from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, an On-the-Spot Award from the Midcontinent Ecological Science Center for outstanding scientific productivity, the Wildlife Society Publication of the Year Award and, most recently, the Department of Interior Meritorious Service Award in 2002.

Bogan has three children, Diane, Sean and Justin, and lives in Corrales, NM, with his wife, Cindy.

Marilyn (McGuire) Snider
Marilyn (McGuire) Snider received her bachelor's degree in 1962 from Fort Hays State University with a major in nursing and her master's degree in psychiatric nursing from the University of Washington-Seattle in 1964. Since then, her career has gone from head nurse to strategic planner and team building facilitator.

After graduation from FHSU, she worked as a staff and head nurse at Hadley Memorial Hospital in Hays. Upon completing her master's degree, she was an assistant professor of psychiatric and medical-surgical nursing at San Francisco State University between 1965 and 1969. After starting her family, she was a lecturer in the master's medical-surgical nursing program at the University of California School of Nursing, San Francisco Medical Center. She continued a career in nursing education at various colleges and universities until 1980. Currently she is vice president of the Board of Regents of Samuel Merritt College.

Following graduation from the Coro Foundation Public Affairs Training Program for Women, Marilyn began Snider and Associates, which provides facilitation of management retreats and meetings for corporations, governmental agencies, professional associations, educational institutions and community organizations. She specializes in facilitating strategic planning, team building, conflict resolution and community consensus. Since Snider began her business in 1980, she has facilitated over 3,000 retreats/meetings for such clients as The Sharper Image, Union Bank of California, the Oakland Athletics Baseball Co., the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, over 100 city councils and the National Park Service in Washington, DC.

"Marilyn has facilitated for The Sharper Image for the past eleven years," wrote Tracy Wan, president and CEO of The Sharper Image, "through both challenging times and highly successful growth periods. As a facilitator, she has provided the support to help our team take The Sharper Image from $50 million to more than $520 million in revenues. Marilyn has been a key part of our planning for this success."

B. Bruce Bare, dean of the College of Forest Services, University of Washington, in a letter supporting Snider's nomination, said, "Beyond the fact that Marilyn is gifted at what she does, she also brings to her work a level of energy and set of values that are generally absent from others doing similar work," he said.

"Her initial work with the college was in the development of our college-wide strategic plan at a time when clarity, cooperation and collaboration were badly needed," said Bare.

Snider's involvement in professional and community organizations includes serving as founder and president of the Oakland Public Library Association, president of the Oakland Ballet Association, vice president and executive committee member of the Oakland Chamber of Commerce and board member of the California State Library.

Awards for her accomplishments include appointment as a delegate to the White House Conference on Libraries and Information Services, being named Woman of the Year by the Oakland Soroptimists, and nomination for the Woman Entrepreneur of the Year of the National Association of Women Business Owners.

Snider and her husband, Lee, live in Oakland, CA. They have two daughters, Laura and Michelle.

Robert B. Channell
Robert B. Channell received his bachelor of science in biology with a minor in mathematics in 1990 and his master of science in biology in 1992 from Fort Hays State University. He earned his doctor of philosophy in zoology in 1998 from the University of Oklahoma-Norman.

At Oklahoma, Channell was awarded a prestigious Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need Fellowship based on his grades at FHSU, his research experience and his career objectives. This fellowship allowed him to conduct research in his area of interest, which was large-scale ecological relationships applied to the conservation of biological diversity.

He spent a portion of his final year of the three-year fellowship in the arid regions of South America surveying its biological diversity. In Argentina, Channell participated in discovering three new mammals.

Channell's first teaching position was at Park University, Parkville, MO, where he was an assistant professor of biology charged with the challenge of restoring the school's field biology program. His efforts helped earn him nominations for outstanding teaching and research awards.

Channell came to FHSU in 1998 as a biology professor. This decision was made based on the job's perfect fit with his interests and the opportunity for him to return "home."

Dr. Robert Nicholson, professor of biological sciences at FHSU, said, "We are fortunate indeed to have someone on our faculty with Rob's abilities. He is an ardent supporter of FHSU and only by his love of the institution are we able to keep him away from larger, so-called prestigious universities."

Since joining FHSU, Channell has published an article in the prestigious British science journal Nature and another in the Journal of Biogeography.

Channell is involved extensively on many different boards and committees. He serves on the Desert Tortoise Council's Science Advisory Board and the Society for Conservation Biology's Education Committee. He chairs the Southwestern Association's Conservation Committee, is a founding member of the International Biogeography Society and serves as its director of resources. He was selected by the National Science Foundation and Commonwealth Science and Industrial Research Organization to review the scientific merits of grant proposals. He also reviews scientific merit for several top journals including American Naturalist, Ecography, Global Ecology and Biogeography and Proceedings of the Royal Society of London.

Channell is also involved in Friends of the Hays Public Library and he served as vice president of the Humane Society of the High Plains.

He has published on subjects ranging from the biogeography and conservation of endangered species to the patterns of geographic range collapse in endangered mammals. Channell has presented papers and posters on various subjects to groups and universities across the nation.

Channell and his wife, Kim Perez, live in Hays.

Kelli M. Donley
Kelli M. Donley graduated from FHSU in 1993 with a bachelor of arts in political science. She is currently a captain and judge advocate in the United States Air Force.

She gained her first legal experience while serving as a legislative intern for U.S. Sen. Bob Dole in the summer following her undergraduate graduation. That position eventually led to a spot in Sen. Dole's presidential campaign. "I can say, without reservation, that Kelli merits your prestigious award and exemplifies the very qualities current and future students should emulate," Dole said in a letter endorsing Donley's nomination for a Young Alumni Award. "Her achievements and selfless dedication to our country are truly admirable," said Dole.

Donley advanced her education at Oklahoma State University with a master's degree in political science with an emphasis in public administration in 1995. Donley was also a graduate teaching associate and a supplemental instructor at Oklahoma State University.

A juris doctorate degree from Washburn University School of Law in 1998 was the next step for Donley. At Washburn, she was part of several internship programs. Richard Hathaway, senior litigation counsel in the Kansas District U.S. Attorney's Office and one of Donley's supervisors, said of her work, "While this program has attracted outstanding students from law schools in Kansas, Missouri and across the country, including Harvard, we have never seen the confluence of brains, drive and personality that are embodied in Kelli. She was simply the finest intern to have ever graced this program."

As an intern in the U.S. Attorney's Office, Donley became the first law student to present oral argument to the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Her argument was successful, making Donley the first law student to ever win a case before the 10th Circuit.

Her legal career in the United States Air Force commenced in 1998. She was chief of administrative and environmental law at the 56th Fighter Wing at Luke Air Force Base, AZ. In this position, Donley advised executive agents on endangered species, environmental matters and overflight issues. She also managed the involuntary discharge program and provided legal assistance to more than 85,000 military personnel, dependents and retirees.

Donley's military career has included postings to the 8th Fighter Wing at Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, as the chief of civil and international law; the 100th Air Refueling Wing at Royal Air Force Mildenhall, United Kingdom, as the chief of environmental, labor and contract law; and currently to Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, as chief of Air Base Wing labor law.

Along with her continual pursuit of professional development, Donley emphasizes providing community and social services. She has volunteered for the Christmas Angel Program "Adopt-a-family," Habitat for Humanity and New Life Battered Women's Shelter.

Doug J. Palen
Doug J. Palen graduated from FHSU in 1993 with a B.S. in agribusiness. Farming was what he knew as a child and it remains his passion. He owns and operates Palen Family Farms in Glen Elder, where he seizes every opportunity to incorporate new technology to increase productivity.

Within the first two years of taking over the family farm, Palen successfully converted the farm from a conventional tillage system to a completely no-till operation.

"Following the conversion to no-tillage, the operation now enjoys the diversification and risk management opportunities offered by this more holistic approach to agricultural production while growing corn, soybeans, sunflowers, grain sorghum, winter wheat, spring oats, alfalfa, smooth brome and prairie hay," said Palen.

His successful farming career has been guided by a personal motto, "forever a student." This motto has also led him to participate in many professional, service and civil groups and organizations to share his knowledge in this industry. Palen is the past-president of No-Till on the Plains Inc., a statewide, non-profit, farmer-directed organization. Through this organization, he has helped organize many educational programs for Kansas farmers as well as the annual conference which typically attracts more than 40 speakers from around the world and over 1,000 farmers and agribusiness men and women each year.

According to Dr. Jean Gleichsner, associate professor of agriculture at FHSU, Palen spreads his knowledge to others by talking to FHSU classes and making presentations at the annual No-Till on the Plains conference.

?Truly Doug understands the value of exchanging ideas with others,? she said.

Douglas Johnson, family friend and president of the Guaranty State Bank, Beloit, in a letter endorsing Palen for the Young Alumni Award, noted Palen's ability to benefit everyone with his knowledge of farming.

"Doug seems to be a bright example of one who has invested well his farm upbringing and college education both for his personal benefit and the benefit of his community, state, nation and world," he said.

Palen's deep interest in the study of no-till farming has taken him outside of the United States as well. He has traveled to China, Chile, Australia, Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina to study their systems of farming and to meet with various agricultural professionals throughout the world.

Palen is also chair of the North Central Crop Residue Alliance, a member of the Wheat Seminar Group, the Specialty Crops of North Central Kansas steering team, a past graduate of the Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program, and a board member for Leadership Mitchell County, which is a program aimed at developing and encouraging leaders in all areas of living in Mitchell County.

Palen has been recognized for his innovative use of farming technology and his overall progress in the industry. He was awarded the Soil Conservation Award by the Kansas Bankers Association and his farm was featured as a cover story in Kansas Farmer Magazine. He was also the guest speaker at the National Association of Conservation Districts and has been featured several times in Clarin, the national agricultural newspaper in Argentina.

Palen lives in Glen Elder.

Lon E. Pishny
Lon E. Pishny graduated from Fort Hays State University in 1971 with a bachelor of science in physical education before he became a Certified Financial Planner and founded his own financial services business.

After graduation he worked for a year as a reporter for the Hays Daily News and spent a brief time as editor of the Farm Bureau News before returning to FHSU for six years -- four as sports information director for the Athletic Department and two as the development fund director for the Endowment Association.

In 1979, a year after finishing his master of science in secondary administration at Fort Hays State, Pishny went to work for the New England Life Insurance Company for six years before accepting a position as trust officer at Fidelity State Bank in Garden City.

While at Fidelity State Bank, Pishny went back to school at the College for Financial Planning, Denver, CO, to become a Certified Financial Planner. During his time at Fidelity he also graduated from the Graduate School of Banking, Madison, WI.

In January, 1994 Pishny founded Pishny Financial Services L.C., a registered investment advisor and comprehensive financial services firm.

"Since graduation in 1971, I have been committed to giving much of my time and energy back to the communities in which we have lived -- Hays, Great Bend and Garden City -- as well as to people throughout our great state of Kansas," wrote Pishny.

The contributions that he has made have been noticeable. The Garden City Area Chamber of Commerce presented him with the Garden City Area Chamber of Commerce Award of Merit in 1989.

"I have known and worked with Lon since 1988, when I moved to Garden City to become president of Garden City Community College," wrote Dr. James Tangeman, retired GCCC president and Pishny's partner in Dynamic Governance Associates, a policy governance consulting service for public and private governing boards. "Lon is a thinker and an extremely dedicated worker for any endeavor he undertakes."

"He is the kind of person who will do anything for anyone in dire need," wrote Bob Lowen, retired director of FHSU's University Relations and executive director of Hays Medical Center Foundation. He continued, "And his personal love of Fort Hays State is nothing short of legend."

Pishny has been a part of numerous organizations and governing boards, ranging from the Garden City Noon Lions Club to the Finney County United Way Board of Directors to the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS) Board of Trustees.

Since graduating from FHSU, Pishny has served as president of the FHSU Alumni Association Board of Directors (1994-1995) and was a board member from 1991-95. In 2002 he became a member of the FHSU Endowment Association Board of Trustees. He has also served as president of the Finney County Alumni Club, hosted numerous Student Recognition Programs designed to recruit prospective students to FHSU and established the Pishny/Frack Scholarship at FHSU.

Pishny also contributes to Garden City Community College, where he has presented financial education programs and served on the GCCC Board of Trustees.

Pishny and his wife, Janyth, live in Garden City. They have a son, Brendon, and a daughter, Jalonna.


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