The Gustavian Weekly

Founder’s Day recognizes exemplary staff members

By Peter Diamond Staff Writer | November 9, 2012 | News

Randall Stuckey, Philly Kauffmann, and Chuck Niederriter were awarded on Founders Day. <em>Matt Thomas</em>

Randall Stuckey, Philly Kauffmann, and Chuck Niederriter were awarded on Founders Day. Matt Thomas

On Founders Day, Friday, November 2, Gustavus honored three staff members with service awards during a special service in Christ Chapel.

On Oct. 31, 1876, Old Main and the campus of then-St. Ansgar’s Academy were formally dedicated with a great ceremony and given the name Gustavus Adolphus College. In recognition of that historic day of the College, Founder’s Day was established. On this date, the College recognizes three employees whose endeavors exemplify the longstanding traditions of excellence and service at Gustavus Adolphus College.

Randall Stuckey, Director of Alumni Relations, was awarded The Eric Norelius Award, which has been created to annually recognize an administrative employee who has demonstrated exceptional service and dedication to the college. Stuckey has worked in Alumni Relations for 27 years and is an alum himself, graduating in 1983.

“Our main focus in all we do is to really engage alumni, the college and each other. Gustavus students are here for four years, but once they leave they have a relationship with Gustavus forever, and we’d like to keep communication with them, to keep engaged with them, in the hope they are engaged with each other,” Stuckey said.

The award was named in honor of Eric Norelius, who was the founder and first professor at Gustavus. Norelius exemplifies the vision, dedication and service emulated by the administrative staff.

Philly Kauffmann, Administrative Assistant in Alumni Relations, was the recipient of the Augusta Carlson Schultz Award. The award recognizes a support staff employee who has demonstrated exceptional service and dedication to the college. Kaufmann has just started her 33rd year working at Gustavus and is involved in managing alumni classes by organizing and planning reservations and events.

“I have met so many marvelous people here at Gustavus, that had I not come here, I have no idea what direction my life would have gone,” Kauffmann said. “It’s just a great place to be.”

“Philly is the main contact for the office. She is very recognized now because of her longevity and her 33 years at Gustavus. It is all about relationship building, and if you’ve got somebody there for thirty years who people recognize, that’s really a plus for alumni relations,” Stuckey said.

The award was named after Augusta Carlson Schultz. In the late 1800s, sixteen-year-old Schultz became one of the first and youngest employees of the Gustavus Dining Service. She continued in her employment and provided many years of dedicated service to the College.

Dr. Chuck Niederriter, Professor of Physics and Director of the Nobel Conference, was awarded The Faculty Award for Outstanding Service. It was first awarded in 1986 and recognizes a faculty member’s leadership both on campus and beyond through service activities in professional and scholarly organizations and societies. Nominations are made during the spring of the previous academic year and reviewed by both a faculty committee and the Deans of the College. Niederriter has worked for the College for 27 years.

“I’m very lucky to work with some great people at Gustavus, both in this department and outside,” Niederriter said.

“We’re just continuing a legacy of our founders who worked hard for this place, and I feel we have the privilege and the responsibility to continue that work during our period so we leave it in good shape for those who have the privilege and opportunity to work for the College later on when we’re gone,” Stuckey said.