This honorary award was established in 1988 to recognize NMC alumni who are noteworthy for their:
- significant professional achievements; and/or
- exemplary leadership in community and professional activities.
Hansen went on to earn a bachelor's in business administration from Western Michigan University. He began his career at the Grand Traverse Pavilions 24 years ago, rising to become CEO of one of the region's largest employers in 2008. He oversees an organization that provides services for more than 300 residents and 100 daily program participants. Also under his leadership and collaborative approach, Grand Traverse Pavilions has become a teaching facility for healthcare students from NMC.
Renis went on to earn bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Michigan and Stanford University, respectively. Since 2001 she has served as a nuclear safeguards engineer for the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, Austria. Notably, she was a member of the IAEA's Nobel Peace Prize-winning team in 2005, a prize shared with IAEA director Mohamed El Baradei. In 2015 she was promoted to a directorship, reporting to the IAEA Deputy Director General.
Nursing class of 1977
After earning her associate degree in nursing, Witkop went on to earn multiple degrees, most recently her doctorate in Nursing Practice from Oakland University. In 2015 she was named by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as Nurse of the Year for transformational leadership, for her ground breaking research related to pain management in hemophilia patients. Witkop is the lead clinician in Munson Medical Center's Northern Regional Bleeding Disorder Center, the only facility of its kind in the United States that is medically managed by nurse practitioners.
Capt. Dean Hobbs
Great Lakes Maritime Academy, 1976 (posthumous)
Hobbs was senior captain of the car ferry SS Badger; senior trial master for the Marinette Marine Corporation, and assisted in the sea trials and delivery of many of its new vessels, including more than 25 U.S. Coast Guard cutters and U.S. Navy Littoral combat ships. Former GLMA superintendent John Tanner said Hobbs "probably helped the academy more than any other graduate," from taking cadets to breakfast to organizing cadet-instructor hockey games.
Previous Outstanding Alumni
- 2015: Sally Rogers (class of 1981, Gary Seabrook, M.D. (class of 1972), Al Zelinski (class of 1983)
- 2014: Craig LaFave (class of 2001), John Militello (class of 1990), Angela Nahikian (class of 1981)
- 2013: Paul Britten, Peg Jonkhoff (class of 1976)
- 2012: Kathleen McManus (class of 1974), Steven Rawlings (class of 1991), Timothy Young (class of 1982)
- 2011: Ruth Ann LaMott (class of 1966), Glenn Wolff (class of 1973)
- 2010: Ross Biederman (class of 1959), Susie Janis (class of 1967)
- 2009: Verna Bartnick (1960s), Bruce Byl (class of 1979), Tim Dunn (class of 1992)
- 2008: Todd McMillen (class of 1985)
- 2007: John Robert Williams (class of 1976)
- 2006: James DeLapa (class of 1956)
- 2005: Larry Inman (class of 1974)
- 2004: Jean M. Rokos (class of 1975)
- 2003: Jason Allen (class of 1983)
- 2002: Maurie Dennis (class of 1965)
- 2001: Student Government Association Presidents
- 2000: John Pelizzari (class of 1975)
- 1999: Walter J. Hooper (class of 1968)
- 1998: James Clancy (class of 1955)
- 1997: Richard Benedict (class of 1984)
- 1996: Lloyd V. Hackley (class of 1964)
- 1993: John & Gloria Lyon (class of 1979)
- 1991: Alexander Galligan (class of 1953)
- 1990: David & Sally Viskochil (class of 1964)
- 1989: Morris Thomas (class of 1964)
- 1988: Charles Kesner (class of 1959)