The University of Northern Colorado Alumni Association has announced its 2019 Honored Alumni. Honorees will be recognized at the Honored Alumni Award Ceremony on Friday, May 10 at the University Center Ballrooms. Celebrate with us.
During her decorated career as an Army Nurse Corps Officer, Kathleen N. Dunemn '71, PhD, APRN, CNM had many assignments as a Researcher, Nurse Midwife, Educator and Commander before retiring as a Colonel in 2011. Following 9/11, she was selected for assignment as the Deputy Director, Developer and Senior Military Analyst of the Department of Defense Theater Trauma Registry Project. As part of her military research efforts with this project, Dunemn provided the data and research results to redesign Military combat protective ware. These changes contributed to a significant decrease in mortality and loss of limbs. Dunemn also led a team that assisted the Army of the Czech Republic in developing their own nurse corps and met with faculty at Czech universities to establish the Bachelor of Science in Nursing as the entry degree into professional nursing. Throughout her career, she has received many distinguished awards including the 2007 Anita Newcomb McGee Award recipient as the US Army Nurse of the year and the Legion of Merit Award in 2010. Dunemn has been the governor-appointed chairperson and member for the Board of Commissioners for the Colorado State VA Senior Living Centers and leads the Doctorate in Nursing Program for the UNC School of Nursing.
Dr. Darlene LeDoux '78, has been a leader in Denver area schools for more than 40 years. She has served as a teacher, principal, and central office leader. At 30 years old, LeDoux became one of the youngest principals in Denver Public Schools. LeDoux is known for creating programs that effectively engage parents and families in the education of their children, establishing the SEAL of Biliteracy–an award earned by DPS students who have attained proficiency in two or more languages by high school graduation, and ensuring English language learners reach their highest potential—which led to statewide recognition for the district. LeDoux served as Instructional Superintendent, where she supervised elementary school principals who led their schools to excellence. LeDoux has been appointed to many leadership and advisory boards in Colorado’s education and community sector, including several years as a UNC trustee. She has also earned numerous awards highlighting her achievements in education. After retirement, LeDoux was quickly invited back to serve as Instructional Superintendent on special assignment as Interim Executive Director of English Language Acquisition for DPS. She is currently leading equity training and development in DPS’ elementary education division.
Loyal UNC supporters and honorary alumni Jim and Janet Listen have exemplified commitment to the University of Northern Colorado for decades. Over the course of their relationship with the Bears, the Listens have embraced the athletic programs, adopted the UNC and Greeley communities and dedicated themselves to the academic success of student-athletes. For many years Janet volunteered to lead coordination efforts for the silent auction portion of the Blue and Gold Reverse Raffle—a fundraising event that generated money for student-athlete scholarships. Janet formerly served as an honorary chair for the Women’s Walk and she continues to keep her team members involved in supporting the Walk to this day. The Listens have become reliable fixtures at both home and away athletic events, and they can often be found sporting blue and gold in the stands regardless of the weather or the score. Aside from their attendance at games, the Listens have been generous with their financial support for UNC Athletics, donating directly to several programs for more than 30 years and establishing the James R. and Janet S. Listen Athletic Scholarship in 2002.
Late journalist Matt Schuman ’86 inspired those around him through his perseverance and advocacy. Those who saw him on campus, as a student and later a reporter, knew Schuman as a diligent journalist who refused to be limited by muscular dystrophy. He spent his life in a wheelchair, but he never let that hinder his activities or upbeat attitude. After graduating from UNC, Schuman became a reporter for the Greeley Tribune and went on to an accomplished career combining his passion for journalism and affinity for sports. He covered the sports beat at the community, prep, university and professional levels. The latter included two trips to the Super Bowl as the newspaper’s Denver Broncos reporter. He wrote an award-winning series called “Access and Ability,” which focused on the challenges people with disabilities face and shared his own personal experiences. In a testament to the lives Schuman touched, 400 people attended his funeral in 2013, including UNC coaches and student-athletes of the teams he covered as the Bears’ reporter. Multiple awards have been named in his memory, and Schuman’s family established the Matt Schuman Memorial Scholarship at UNC to support a journalism student every year.
Since graduating with her degree in chemistry, Julie Zalikowski ’75 has had a distinguished career. Zalikowski’s scientific work has focused on analytical chemistry, first in the environmental field and then in pharmaceutical sciences. She owned and operated an analytical chemistry laboratory providing drinking water analyses in the state of Washington. She spent 3 months in Cairo, Egypt as part of the original Gabal El Asfar water treatment plant project training Egyptian scientists in performing critical water quality analyses. Leaving the environmental field, she became a research scientist for several large biotech companies including AstraZeneca, where she worked as a principle scientist and was part of the team that developed the statin drug Crestor. During the course of her career, Zalikowski has held leadership positions at Accium BioSciences, Amgen, Novartis Diagnostics and AstraZeneca. Zalikowski stayed connected to her professors and the chemistry program after graduation, and she has been a loyal donor to the university, providing support to Chemistry, Athletics and Nursing. In 2015, she and her husband established the Julie Zalikowski and David Cissell Chemistry Endowment, which provides a scholarship to a Chemistry major with a financial need.