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UW–Madison Division of the Arts Announces Recipients of the 2022 Creative Arts Awards


MEDIA CONTACT: Kate Hewson, Associate Director, UW–Madison Division of the Arts |




The Division of the Arts Announces Recipients of the 2022 Creative Arts Awards

Madison, Wis. – Each May, the UW–Madison Division of the Arts celebrates artistic achievement, recognizes service to the arts, and supports arts research by bestowing the Creative Arts Awards. The call for applications and nominations was released in early fall with a deadline in December. Seven awards are open to a variety of arts practitioners, researchers, students, staff and faculty from any area including arts academic departments and programs. This includes Art, Art History, Arts Administration, Communication Arts, Creative Writing, Dance, Design Studies, Music, Interdisciplinary Theatre Studies and Theatre and Drama.

Awards are split into three categories: Faculty Arts Research, Staff and Faculty Arts Outreach, and Student Arts Research and Achievement. Applications and nominations for these awards are juried by a panel of six previous recipients of the awards and campus arts research administrators.

“The Creative Arts Awards are integral to recognizing and supporting the research excellence generated by UW–Madison artists,” stated Christopher Walker, Director of the Division of the Arts. “Each of the honorees expands artistic knowledge within their specific discipline and advances the Wisconsin Idea.” Walker encourages staff, faculty, students and community members to attend the award ceremony on May 10, 2022 and thanks the donors who make the awards possible as well as members of the 2022 Creative Arts Awards Selection Committee, including Peggy Choy (Dance), Laurie Beth Clark (Art), Wei Dong (Design Studies), Florence Hsia (History), Dan Lisowski (Theatre and Drama) and Scott Teeple (Music). 

Further information about the recipients and their projects may be found online.


Creative Arts Award

Beth Nguyen, Professor of Creative Writing

Project title: Layaway

Emily Mead Baldwin Award in the Creative Arts 

Emily Arthur, Associate Professor of Art

Project title: Birds as a Baseline: 100 Years of Our Changing Landscape

Marianne Fairbanks, Associate Professor of Design Studies

Project title: Weaving as a Form of Building


Joyce J. and Gerald A. Bartell Award in the Arts

Baron Kelly, Professor of Theatre and Drama

Project title: Fences

Edna Wiechers Arts in Wisconsin Award

Jennifer Angus, Professor of Design Studies

Project title: A Was for Aphid, B was for Bug, C was for Cicada

Adriana Barrios, Center for Design and Material Culture

Project title: Pernicious

Emily Kammerud, Department of Pathology

Project title: It’s Okay to Look

Baron Kelly, Professor of Theatre and Drama

Project title: Fences


David and Edith Sinaiko Frank Graduate Fellowship for a Woman in the Arts

Magdalena Sas, D.M.A. Cello Performance

Project title: Chamber music works by Reena Esmail, Akshaya Avril Tucker and Asha Srinivasa

Lyman S.V. Judson and Ellen Mackechnie Judson Student Award in the Creative Arts 

Undergraduate awardees:

Sophia Abrams, School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Department of Afro-American Studies and Department of Art History

Ana Tinder, Mead Witter School of Music

Graduate awardees:

Cole Bartels, D.M.A. Trombone Performance

Carlos Ortiz, Ph.D. Candidate Spanish and Portuguese

Mengmeng Wang, D.M.A. Composition

Praveen Maripelly, M.F.A. Candidate of Art
Project title: Prayog: An Interdisciplinary Place

Molly Mattaini, Ph.D. Candidate of Interdisciplinary Theatre Studies

Katherine Norman, Ph.D. Candidate of Educational Psychology

Kailea Saplan, Ph.D. Candidate of Curriculum and Instruction
Project title: Teaching Artists and Antiracism in Out-of-School Time Theatre Programs

Lindsey Meekhof, D.M.A. Candidate in Vocal Performance

Project title: Staging Don Giovanni in acknowledgment of the “Me Too” Movement

Lianne Milton, M.F.A. Candidate of Art

Project title: Matrilline

Henry Obeng, M.F.A. Candidate of Design Studies

Project title: The Trail

Derick Wycherly, M.F.A. Candidate of Art

Project title: M.F.A. Exhibition

Donors that support the awards include the Anonymous Fund, the Joyce J. and Gerald A. Bartell family, Suzanne and Roberto Freund, Bassett and Evjue Foundations, Edna Wiechers Arts in Wisconsin Fund and Emily Nissley.


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Madison College receives Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting

Madison College has received the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada. The Certificate of Achievement is the highest form of recognition in governmental accounting and financial reporting.

Photo by Richard Hurd

DeWitt’s Wisconsin Super Lawyers® 2021 Announced


Michelle M. Friedman / 262-754-2877

DeWitt’s Wisconsin Super Lawyers® 2021 Announced

GREEN BAY | MADISON | MILWAUKEE | MINNEAPOLIS – DeWitt LLP today announced ten of its Wisconsin lawyers were selected for inclusion on the 2021 Wisconsin Super Lawyers list and five were included on the 2021 Wisconsin Rising Stars list. 

The ten DeWitt attorneys selected for inclusion on the 2021 Wisconsin Super Lawyers list are:

  • Shannon A. Allen – Business Litigation (Brookfield, WI)
  • Jon P. Axelrod – Business Litigation (Madison, WI)
  • Eric A. Farnsworth – Personal Injury, Plaintiff (Madison, WI)
  • Douglas H. Frazer – Tax (Brookfield, WI)
  • David J. Hase – Business Litigation (Brookfield, WI)
  • Paul R. Hoefle – Business Litigation (Brookfield, WI)
  • Jeffrey J. Liotta – Business Litigation (Brookfield, WI)
  • Joseph A. Ranney, III – Business Litigation (Madison, WI)
  • Theresa L. Roetter – Family Law (Madison, WI)
  • Brian R. Smigelski – Business Litigation (Brookfield, WI)

The five DeWitt attorneys were selected for inclusion on the 2021 Wisconsin Rising Stars list are:

  • Matthew J. Hills – Business/Corp (Brookfield, WI)
  • Michael R. Kruse – Civil Litigation, Plaintiff (Brookfield, WI)
  • Deborah C. Meiners – Business Litigation (Madison, WI)
  • Brody C. Richter – Business/Corp (Madison, WI)
  • Barret V. Van Sicklen – Employment & Labor (Madison, WI)

About Super Lawyers

The selections for Wisconsin Super Lawyers are made by the research team at Super Lawyers, which is a service of the Thomson Reuters legal division based in Eagan, Minnesota. Each year the team conducts a thorough selection process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, independent evaluation of candidates by the attorney-led research staff, a peer review of candidates by practice area and a good-standing and disciplinary check.

The final list of Wisconsin Super Lawyers features the top five percent of attorneys in more than 60 practice areas. Lawyers featured on the Rising Stars list are selected based upon similar criteria as Super Lawyers; however, a candidate must either be under 40 years of age or in practice for 10 years or less, and a peer evaluation is not conducted.

About DeWitt

DeWitt LLP was founded in 1903 and is one of the 10 largest law firms based in Wisconsin, with an additional presence in Minnesota. It has more than 130 attorneys practicing in Green Bay, Madison and Metropolitan Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and Minneapolis, Minnesota, and has the experience to service clients of all scopes and sizes. The firm is known for its work in a variety of legal areas including intellectual property, patents, trademarks and copyright law, construction litigation, corporate law, employment, environmental, employee benefits, estate planning, family business, family law, government relations, health care, litigation, real estate, and tax law.  More information is available at 


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Oak Bank: Bob Gorsuch Honored With 2021 WBA Leaders in Banking Excellence

Bob Gorsuch Honored With 2021 WBA Leaders in Banking Excellence
Gorsuch is the longest-serving bank CEO in Fitchburg and Madison.

Fitchburg, WI – A career in banking wasn’t a childhood dream, but Oak Bank’s CEO Bob Gorsuch says he is blessed to have 57 years of experience in banking (and counting).

“I am one of those people who doesn’t feel like I go to work every day – I love what I do,” said Gorsuch. “The moment it starts to feel like work is when I will retire.”

The Wisconsin Bankers Association (WBA) honored Gorsuch, along with four others, with the 2021 Leaders in Banking Excellence award on October 29 during the WBA recognition luncheon.

“Over the last five decades, Bob helped shape what local banking looks like today and has made a significant impact on the lives of employees, clients and the community,” said Ken Thompson, WBA Chair. “Bob has been a tremendous leader and paved the path for others to follow in his footsteps by encouraging professional growth and community involvement.”

Gorsuch, the longest-serving bank CEO in Madison-area, began his career in 1964 at First National Bank & Trust, Co. in Marquette, Michigan, where he served as cashier and eventually vice president. In 1975, at the age of 32, Gorsuch moved to Wisconsin where he became president and CEO at Park Bank. He fulfilled his dream of opening a bank that provided the personal touch every client deserved by starting Oak Bank in Fitchburg in 2000. 

“The human element makes the difference,” said Gorsuch. “That’s what community banking is all about. We go above and beyond our clients’ expectations here at Oak Bank by taking the time to listen and understand their needs. This helps us develop creative solutions that other banks may not take the time to do.” 

Under Gorsuch’s leadership, Oak Bank has grown from just an idea in 2000 into a $420 million community bank employing 40 individuals. Oak Bank supports the growth of local businesses, helps area residents achieve their homeownership dreams and has been instrumental in the development and prosperity of the City of Fitchburg and its surrounding communities. In fact, Oak Bank joined other financial institutions across Wisconsin over the last year in processing a collective total of 33,000 Paycheck Protection Program loans worth a combined $2.2 billion.

“I have known Bob throughout my entire 30-year career at WBA and he remains as passionate and energized about community banking today as he was 30 years ago,” said Rose Oswald Poels, WBA president and CEO. “His commitment to the communities his bank serves, as well as his dedication to many of his personal passions, notably JDRF, epitomize the essence of community banking. It is an honor to recognize Bob and the four other bankers for being true ‘Leaders in Banking Excellence’ in the state of Wisconsin.”

Gorsuch’s community involvement runs deep. He has been treasurer for several church organizations, president of South Madison Rotary, president of Community Bankers of Wisconsin and a WBA Board member. Gorsuch was inducted into the WBA 50-Year Club in 2015 and was recognized by Community Bankers of Wisconsin as “Banker of the Year” in 1990. He is heavily involved with JDRF, has served on the Fitchburg New Economy Technology Team and contributed to the Wisconsin Academically Challenged and Talented Youth organization. Through Bob’s leadership, Oak Bank and its staff support more than 125 local nonprofits throughout the year through time, talent and donations.  

“Bob truly leads by example,” said Terry Taylor, President at Oak Bank. “Bob lives Oak Bank’s ethos and sets the tone for not only how we treat our clients but also how we engage with the communities in which we live and work. He is very deserving of this honor.”

Gorsuch’s plaque is now on display at the WBA headquarters in Madison on the WBA’s Leaders in Banking Excellence Wall to serve as inspiration to others. This is the second year WBA has honored current and former bankers, bestowing the designation to 12 recipients last year. Click here to read more about the recipients of the WBA Leaders in Banking Excellence.

About Oak Bank 

Founded in 2000, Oak Bank is celebrating nearly 22 years of deep roots in the Fitchburg community and Madison area. The community bank meets the financial needs of homeowners and businesses by offering top-notch service, quick answers and unique solutions, all while supporting over 125 local nonprofits each year. Visit to learn more.

Photos attached:

  • Bob Gorsuch Receives Award – Pictured: Rose Oswald Poels, WBA president and CEO; Bob Gorsuch; Ken Thompson, WBA Chair
  • WBA Leaders in Banking Excellence Wall


Photo by Richard Hurd

WPS Health Solutions nationally recognized for culture excellence


DeAnne Boegli
Vice President of Communications

WPS Health Solutions nationally recognized for culture excellence

MADISON, Wis.—Oct. 27, 2021—WPS Health Solutions was named one of the recipients of  2021 Top Workplaces for Remote Work and 2021 Top Workplaces for Work-Life Flexibility as a part of the October 2021 Top Workplaces National Awards. Both culture excellence awards were given in addition to WPS earning a Top Workplaces honor by the Wisconsin State Journal earlier in March 2021.

The honorary list is based solely on employee feedback through a survey by Energage, an employee engagement technology company. The anonymous survey measured 15 culture drivers critical to the success of any organization, including alignment, execution, and connection. More than 2,300 WPS employees participated in the survey at the end of 2020. Employers that scored high enough were recognized as Top Workplaces.

For the national awards, employers were categorized by size and then, based on data from 70,000 organizations and 23 million surveys, Energage evaluated organizations against industry’s most robust benchmarks.

The Top Workplace for Remote Work celebrates the Top Workplaces whose workforce consists of at least 50% of survey respondents being “mostly remote” or “fully remote.”  Only 3% of companies were given this award.

The Top Workplace for Work-Life Flexibility is given to companies whose employee surveys indicated and confirmed they were provided the flexibility they needed to maintain a healthy balance between work and their personal lives. 

“We are honored to receive two 2021 Top Workplace Culture Excellence awards for Remote Work and Work-Life Flexibility. At WPS, our performance-based culture is one where our people’s great work and innovations are seen, fueled, and rewarded,” said Moira Klos, Human Resources Senior Vice President. “One way we accomplish this is by providing employees with the flexibility, support, and autonomy they need to be productive, engaged, and healthy. Cultivating an adaptive work environment results in a healthier, more resilient workforce.”

For more information about the October 2021 Top Workplaces National Awards, please visit

About WPS Health Solutions

Wisconsin Physicians Service Insurance Corporation (WPS Health Solutions), founded in 1946, is a nationally regarded benefits administrator for a variety of U.S. government programs and a leading not-for-profit health insurer in Wisconsin. WPS Health Solutions serves active-duty and retired military personnel, seniors, individuals, and families in Wisconsin, across the U.S., and around the world. WPS Health Solutions, headquartered in Madison, Wis., has more than 2,800 employees. Within the enterprise, there are three divisions: WPS Government Health Administrators, WPS Military and Veterans Health, and WPS Health Insurance/WPS Health Plan/EPIC Specialty Benefits. For more information, please visit

About Energage

Energage is a Certified B Corporation that helps organizations measure, shape, and showcase their culture to build a sustainable competitive advantage. Through its fully unified SaaS platform, plus support and professional services, Energage customers are successfully recruiting and retaining the right talent for their organization by building, maintaining and branding their unique culture. Having launched the industry’s first employee engagement survey in 2006, Energage draws on the employees’ feedback collected through the leading employer recognition program—Top Workplaces—to maintain the industry’s most robust workplace culture benchmarks.