Six University of Nebraska Kearney alumni will be recognized during 2012 Homecoming activities the weekend of Sept. 21-22.
The six will be honored at the 32nd annual UNK Homecoming Awards Banquet on Friday, Sept. 21.
Jamie Gutierrez, Class of 1989 of Omaha; William C. ‘Bill’ McGahan, Class of 1964 Master of Science 1968 Educational Specialist 1981, of North Platte; and Jeanette Keller Wojtalewicz, Class of 1984, of Omaha will receive the Distinguished Alumni Award.
Dan Whelan, Class of 2000 of Schaumburg, Ill., will receive the Distinguished Young Alumnus Award, and Jerry and Nancy Stahr Dulitz, Class of 1965 of Kearney, will receive the Jim Rundstrom Distinguished Alumni Service Award.
Jamie Gutierrez is president and owner of Midwest Maintenance, a building service provider headquartered in Omaha. As a leader in the housekeeping industry, Midwest Maintenance maintains in excess of 8,000,000 square feet of office, industrial, healthcare and arena space. The company has been Omaha’s largest minority-owned, women-owned and Hispanic-owned business since 1998.
Gutierrez serves, or has served, on the boards of the United Way of the Midlands, Latino Catholic Scholarship Fund, Girls Inc, Archdiocese of Omaha and Omaha Chamber of Commerce. She serves as a councilor for the Knights of Ak-sar-ben. She is also a member of the Government Affairs Council of the Building Service Contractors Association International and the UNO Chancellor’s Hispanic Advisory Council.
Gutierrez’ company has been recognized as one of the fastest growing Inner City 100 businesses by Initiative for a Competitive Inner City and Inc. magazine. She was one of Ten Outstanding Young Omahans (TOYO) by the Junior Chamber of Commerce, Entrepreneur of the Year from the UNL Center for Entrepreneurship, Woman of Excellence from the YWCA, Woman of Color from UNO and 40 under 40 by the Midlands Business Journal. She was recognized by Hispanic Business Magazine as having one of the top 500 largest Hispanic-owned companies in the nation.
Bill McGahan is a retired educator who spent 48 years in education, 42 in a variety of positions with North Platte St. Patrick schools. For 37 of those years, he served as superintendent of the North Platte Catholic Schools school system before retiring in 2011.
McGahan has been active in a variety of professional and civic activities. He was a charter member of UNK Educational Administration Advisory Committee, serving from 1991 to 2011. He served on 24 Nebraska Department of Education school accreditation team visits to Nebraska schools. McGahan was a member of the Bishop’s Pastoral Council for the Diocese of Grand Island, chair of the Holy Spirit Church Parish Council, chair of the North Platte mayor’s library advisory committee, a member of ESU #16 advisory council and president of South Platte Valley Association. He has been an active member of various educational and other community organizations including Boy Scouts, American Red Cross, Rotary and Knights of Columbus.
McGahan was North Platte Jaycee of the Year, Optimist Club Friend of Education, Nebraska Speech Communications and Theatre Association’s Outstanding Administrator, National Catholic Educational Association Outstanding Service recipient and City of North Platte Cody Scout Award recipient.
Jeanette Keller Wojtalewicz is chief financial officer for Catholic Health Initiative Nebraska (CHI), a position she has held since 2010. CHI Nebraska is a $1 billion company which includes hospitals and organizations such as Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney, St. Francis Medical Center in Grand Island, St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center and the Nebraska Heart Hospital in Lincoln, St. Mary’s Hospital in Nebraska City, and the Physician’s Network and Health Connect at Home.
From 1999 to 2010, she served as the vice president of finance at St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center in Lincoln. Wojtalewicz also was a CPA with Seim, Johnson, Sestak and Quist in Omaha, director of finance at Clarkson Hospital in Omaha, director of finance at Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital in Lincoln and CFO of Orchard Place Child Guidance Center in Des Moines, Iowa.
Wojtalewicz is a member and was past president of the Healthcare Financial Management Association. She is treasurer of the board of the Nebraska Surgery Center in Lincoln and president-elect of the board for the Missouri Valley Cancer Consortium in Omaha. In addition, she is chair of the Finance Operations Leadership Council for Catholic Health Initiatives in Denver. Wojtalewicz served as a member of the UNK Gold Torch Society from 2006 to 2008.
Dan Whelan, a graphic designer, designed UNK’s most recognizable visual image, the Loper athletic logo, in his senior illustration class. He is game designer/project manager at Incredible Technologies. He joined the company in 2001.
At Incredible Technologies, Whelan was the lead user interface and 3D character on the company’s Golden Tee golf video arcade game. The company, considered one of the top companies in the industry, also makes video slot machines and other games. Whelan was also selected for several awards voted on by peers at the company – Rookie of Year, Person I’d Most Like to Be Like, The Inventor and the Butt Buster.
Whelan is a deacon at Spring Valley Presbyterian Church. In college, he was a first team RMCA All-Conference selection as a center. He won a number of campus awards for his water color paintings and his academic achievements.
Jerry and Nancy Stahr Dulitz are long-time Central Nebraska business owners and UNK supporters. They have been owners of Nelson’s Furniture Stores for 50 years. They are also active members of Zion Lutheran Church having served on various boards. Jerry served on the Platte Valley State Bank board of directors and Civil Service board. Nancy has been an active member of UNK Senior College and the board of directors for Kearney Concert Association.
Both have been passionate about UNK athletics and the fine arts. It is rare not to see them at UNK sporting events in Kearney or around the country. They both are founding members of Loper Football Backers and have been deeply involved with various other UNK fund raisers.
The alumni award recipients will be honored at the 32nd annual Homecoming Awards banquet on Friday, Sept. 21. Tickets are $30 and are available by contacting the UNK Alumni Office at 308-865-8474 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.