North Central College - Naperville, IL

John W. Daniels Jr. '69

John W. Daniels Jr. received the Legend of the Year Award from the Milwaukee Community Journal (MCJ) at its 35th Annual Legends Gala on August 6. According to MCJ publisher Patricia O’Flynn Pattillo, he was selected for his stellar contributions to the city across a broad spectrum, encompassing law, business, philanthropy, faith and legacy-building. Each year the publication honors people in Milwaukee who have demonstrated community commitment in their personal, professional and civic and social lives. Daniels is chairman of Quarles & Brady LLP.

Larry Cooper '71

Larry Cooper performed Verdi’s “La donna é Mobile,” “Music of the Night” from “The Phantom of the Opera” and “Lady of Spain” at the Hopkins Park Band Shell in DeKalb, IL. After graduating from North Central College, he was awarded a full scholarship to Northwestern University to study opera. He also studied at the Volkwanghochschule in Essen-Werben, Germany, under full scholarship. Cooper has performed in numerous opera, operetta, concert and oratorio performances.

Larry F. Vukov, M.D. '74

Larry F. Vukov, M.D., was awarded the 2011 Mayo Clinic Alumni Association Humanitarian Award for his work leading mission trips in underserved nations as well as his contributions to community-based mission service for patients at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. The award acknowledges significant contributions by graduates of Mayo’s education programs to the welfare of a community, country or humanity, beyond any volunteer service to Mayo. During his 21 years of mission service, seven Hope centers were developed with schools to educate and feed more than 2,000 children.

Nancy Kruschke McKinney '89

Nancy Kruschke McKinney signed a publishing deal with CelebrityPress to release the book, titled “Win!: Winning Strategies From Today’s Leading Experts.” The book features top advice from some of the most successful experts around the world. The authors share business strategies and real-life solutions that can help others in the new and rapidly changing economy. McKinney, a productivity coach and professional organizer, founded Successful Organizing Solutions (S.O.S) to help individuals and businesses increase their effectiveness and efficiency through organizing skills and practices.

Tracy Weber Plesek '90

Tracy Weber Plesek was named Teacher of the Year for Lincoln-Way West High School in New Lenox, IL. Teachers selected for the honor are leaders in their curriculum content area and within their schools. Plesek has been a mathematics teacher for Lincoln-Way District 210 for 21 years and mathematics department chair for Lincoln-Way West since 2009. She earned a master’s degree in education administration from Governors State University. Her hobbies include photography, watching her own children participate in their sports/activities, and going to Chicago Cubs baseball games.

Christina Tammen '94

Christina Tammen visited Africa to coach volleyball and share C.H.U.M.P., a series of books she wrote designed to help people develop effective strategies to defend the mind against doubt and fear. A high school world cultures and world history teacher since 2000, Tammen has been coaching volleyball since 1995. In addition to history facts, the self-described “natural counselor” teaches that faith, patience, forgiveness, believing and hoping are all skills to be mastered.

Matt Brill '96

Matt Brill was featured in an occasional series on about what he learned from the college experience. At North Central, Brill was a three-time All-American in cross country, finishing second in 1995 and winning the 1996 title on the 8,000-meter course. He helped the Cardinals to the team title in 1993, when they scored a record-low 32 points, and led North Central to second-place finishes, 1994-1996. He was an eight-time All-American in track, helping the Cardinals to the 1994 outdoor title, and was a two-time GTE Academic All-American.

Steve Barrett '02

Steve Barrett was featured in the Troop Talk column in the Beacon News in Aurora, IL, for his service during the Vietnam War. He was a U.S. Navy hospital corpsman serving with a Marine unit stationed in Da Nang, Vietnam. On March 30, 1971, news broke that the Viet Cong had bombed a train in a mountainous area resulting in 22 casualties. Barrett headed to a medevac helicopter with his crew and as they were coming in to pick up the victims, the enemy hit the helicopter with an RPG (rocket-propelled grenade) and the helicopter went down.

Patrick Rizzo '05

Patrick Rizzo was selected to represent Team USA in the Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico, Oct. 14-30. Rizzo was one of two U.S. men competing and took eighth place in the marathon, which took place Oct. 30. Rizzo also qualified to compete in the U.S. Olympic Trials in Houston in January. The top three finishers at the Trials will represent the United States at the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London.

Lauren Visher '07

Lauren Visher, special events coordinator, was interviewed by the Naperville Sun about her job, which involves coordinating six major events annually for Naper Settlement. “Long-term, I would like to stay in the non-profit (field) and I would like to have a greater impact. At (my former employer) the YMCA I was responsible for bringing in a half million dollars that we could use to help more than 5,000 families. To have an even greater impact would be fantastic.”

North Central Now Annual Report 2011

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