Gustavus Employees Honored at Annual Founders Day Celebration

Vicki Kennedy, Paul Jacobson, and Lisa Heldke received the 2016 employee awards at the College's annual Founders Day celebration.
Posted on October 31st, 2016 by

Founders Day celebrates the dedication of Old Main in 1876. The iconic building has served as the cornerstone of the Saint Peter campus for 141 years.

Gustavus Adolphus College honored three outstanding employees today at the College’s annual Founders Day celebration, which recognizes the dedication of the iconic Old Main on October 31, 1876. The award recipients were recognized at the daily chapel service and a short reception in Alumni Hall. The 2016 Founders Day marks the 140th anniversary of the College’s location on the Saint Peter, Minn. campus.

Vicki Kennedy greets colleagues after the chapel service.

Vicki Kennedy greets colleagues after the chapel service.

Vicki Kennedy, visit coordinator in the Office of Admission, is the 2016 winner of the Augusta Carlson Schultz Award, which recognizes an outstanding support staff employee who has demonstrated exceptional service and dedication to the College. Named in honor of one of the first employees of the Gustavus Dining Service in the late 1800s, the Augusta Carlson Schultz award winners exemplify the dedication and spirit of service of the support staff who continue to contribute to the success of the College. Kennedy began in the admission office in 2001 and is responsible for planning and coordinating campus visits for prospective students by pairing them with faculty members, conductors, coaches, and student organizations for appointments and class visits to provide a personalized Gustavus experience for each student. In addition, she runs the College’s overnight visit program for prospective students, helps coordinate the “Gustie Guide” overnight hosts, and uses the College’s admission database to manage and track communications with prospective students. Kennedy lives in Kasota, Minn. with her husband, Mark.

Paul "Jake" Jacobson thanks his staff at the award reception.

Paul “Jake” Jacobson thanks his staff at the award reception.

Paul “Jake” Jacobson, assistant director of the Gustavus Dining Service for production and purchasing, has been named the 2016 winner of the Erik Norelius Award for the Outstanding Administrative Employee. The award, named for the College’s founder and first teacher, honors an administrative employee who exemplifies the vision, dedication, and service shown by Norelius. A key member of the team that has built the Gustavus Dining Service into a perennial top-20 selection to Best College Food lists, Jacobson serves as the College’s head chef and is responsible for all purchasing of food items for the Market Place and catering services. He also coordinates menus, supervises the kitchen staff, and assists with event planning for large banquets on campus. Jacobson, a Gustavus employee since 1996, lives on Lake Washington with his wife, Linda.

Lisa Heldke '82 won the 2016 Faculty Service Award.

Lisa Heldke ’82 won the 2016 Faculty Service Award.

Lisa Heldke ‘82, professor of philosophy, gender, women, and sexuality studies, and director of the Nobel Conference, is the recipient of the 2016 Faculty Service Award. Heldke, who has previously won the Gustavus Faculty Scholarly Achievement Award (2015) and the Edgar M. Carlson Award for Distinguished Teaching (2004), studies American philosophy, feminist philosophy, the philosophy of race, and the philosophy of food. She is involved on campus as the director of the Nobel Conference, member of the Kitchen Cabinet advisory committee, and plays an important role in several faculty leadership initiatives. A 1982 graduate of Gustavus, Heldke majored in philosophy and music before earning her master’s degree and doctorate at Northwestern University. She returned to Gustavus to teach in 1988 and currently lives in Saint Peter with her dog, Ampersand.


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Luc Hatlestad


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