MADISON — University of Wisconsin System academic staff members from UW-Eau Claire and UW-Stevens Point are the recipients of the 2002 Regents Academic Staff Award for Excellence.

The recipients are Katherine S. Schneider, senior psychologist and coordinator of training in UW-Eau Claire’s Counseling Services Program, and Robert M. Korth, a lake management specialist at UW-Stevens Point and UW-Extension. Each receives a $5,000 award for professional development or to enhance a university program or function.

The awards were presented Thursday evening (April 4) during a ceremony following the UW System Board of Regents meeting in Madison. Each UW institution nominated an academic staff member for the award, and the recipients were chosen by a committee chaired by Regent Lolita Schneiders. Regents JoAnne Brandes, Phyllis Krutsch, and Toby Marcovich also served on the committee.

“By presenting this award each year, we demonstrate the Board’s strong appreciation of the UW System’s non-instructional academic staff,” Schneiders said at the awards ceremony. “The strength of the UW System and its institutions can be attributed in part to the excellence of the academic staff. This award acknowledges the vital contributions they all make, as well as their institutional loyalty, their professionalism, and their devotion to serving students and the public.”

Katherine Schneider joined the staff of UW-Eau Claire in 1990 as a clinical administrator, and two years later became a senior psychologist and coordinator of training. She “commits herself professionally and personally to make a broadly positive impact on the life of our students, our university and our community,” wrote one nominator. She is “a role model and an inspiration to all who know her,” wrote another.

The first blind student in the Kalamazoo, Michigan, public schools, Schneider chose psychology as a profession because of her desire to help people. With a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Michigan State University, she went on to earn her master’s degree and Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Purdue University.

At UW-Eau Claire, she coordinates internship and practicum programs, conducts individual and group therapy and provides crisis intervention services. A strong advocate for people with disabilities, Schneider recently founded the American Psychology Association’s Mentoring Program for psychologists with disabilities.

Robert Korth has served since 1990 as a lake management specialist in the Cooperative Extension Service at UW-Stevens Point. He directs the Wisconsin Lake Partnership at UW-Stevens Point, a unique program and a national model that brings together individuals from the public and private sector to protect a precious natural resource–Wisconsin’s lakes.

“I firmly believe our lakes are healthier and lake-loving citizens are much more dedicated and effective because they have been inspired and empowered by Bob Korth,” wrote one nominator. He coordinates the annual Wisconsin Lakes Convention, produces a quarterly newsletter, Lake Tides, writes extensively and provides educational and organizational assistance to citizens and groups interested in lake stewardship.

His background includes a bachelor’s degree in anthropology from UW-Oshkosh and a master’s degree in natural resources/environmental education from UW-Stevens Point. Known as a creative and innovative colleague, Korth also is an accomplished photographer and author. His book, Through the Looking Glass: A Field Guide to Aquatic Plants is known nationally and internationally.

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Erik Christianson UW System 608-262-5061