Six Alumni Honored at Annual Legends and Legacies Event
One of the highlights of homecoming at NWU is the annual Legends and Legacies banquet where NWU pays special tribute to outstanding alumni for life and career accomplishments.
This year's honorees are:
Jack Plummer (’58), Medal of Honor
Dr. Jack Plummer has always asked large questions. What motivates us? What influences our behavior? Nebraska Wesleyan was “a perfect fit for me to challenge my curiosities.”
Throughout his 50-year career in psychology, he continued to ask big questions, specifically about how brain injuries affect us—“the way we move, the way we feel, the way we think, and, in many ways, who we are.” He created Connecticut’s first brain injury program as director of psychology at Gaylord Specialty Healthcare. He’s chaired two boards of the American Psychology Association, won numerous professional awards and recently donated a valuable collection of medical texts and research materials to Nebraska Wesleyan's Cochrane-Woods Library.
Steve Krueger (’74), Alumni Achievement Award
Dr. Steve Krueger has never been content sticking to the way things have always been done. His work in cardiology has been about developing new ideas to advance patient care. A cardiologist with Bryan Health since 1988, Krueger now runs the Bryan Heart Improvement Program (BHIP), which researches, monitors and treats heart failure patients.
He was recognized by the Lincoln Fire Department for his work assessing the risk of heart failure among firefighters. He is also program director of Bryan Heart Athlete Care, which studies athletes’ hearts to discover warning signs that could help predict heart attacks.
Josh Berry (’04), Young Alumni Achievement Award
Josh Berry helps entrepreneurs build their businesses. He credits NWU’s Career Center for helping him start a successful career right out of college. His first job was with the global talent assessment company, Talent Plus, where he spent nearly a decade consulting clients “from Bahrain to Bogota” on business strategy, leadership development and talent management. A highlight of his career was giving a keynote speech in Spanish at the top Peruvian human resources conference in 2008 (using the fluency he built with NWU Spanish professors Joyce Michaelis and Rita Ricaurte).
In 2013, he started Econic, a consulting company that has helped over 100 startups and corporate innovation teams.
Gary George (’82), Alumni Humanitarian Award
Since graduating from NWU, Rev. Gary George has served as a minister, registered nurse, healthcare administrator, professor, counselor, volunteer and more. While his list of service accomplishments is long, he insists he can’t take credit. “The common thread throughout my life has simply been teamwork—the recognition that I’ve never done anything alone.”
With the Lutheran Volunteer Corps, George worked in a free medical clinic that serves low-income and homeless residents of Washington, D.C. He was the executive director of the Nebraska AIDS Project in the early 1990s, and worked as a nurse in the cardiac care unit at Creighton University Medical Center. He is currently the executive director of Omaha’s Hospice House—The Josie Harper Residence. He teaches gerontology and social work at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.
Angelo Stabler (’09), Young Alumni Humanitarian Award
While still a student at NWU, Angelo Stabler started a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization from only a vision and with no financial foundation. That organization, Guidance to Success Youth Club, offers tutoring and mentoring to at-risk elementary, middle and high school students. His goal has been to discover “long-term solutions to overcoming the obstacles that impede Lincoln youth from embracing their dreams and obtaining the possible.” Stabler had to manage similar obstacles and credits his NWU experience with helping him “overcome the odds and break down barriers.”
He’s received the Kenneth R. Holder Memorial Award, East Nebraska District Service to Mankind Award, Lancaster County Service to Mankind Award and the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska Leadership Award.
Daphne Epp-Hall (’92), Alumni Loyalty Award
Daphne Epp-Hall knows how to recognize talent and give good people the room and resources to do their best work. She addresses challenges with an infectious energy and creativity. The active alumna serves on the Board of Governors, and has been president of the Alumni Executive Council and consultant to the Enrollment and Marketing Committee.
Epp-Hall appreciates Nebraska Wesleyan’s role in her success and works to help others access an excellent education. She is senior vice president of college access programs at Lincoln’s EducationQuest Foundation, and has won numerous distinguished service awards. “Nebraska Wesleyan was a perfect match,” she said, “and it’s been my pleasure to give back and pay it forward.”