Southeast announces Merit Award winners

Tuesday, August 13, 2002

Six alumni and a faculty member will receive Southeast Missouri State University's annual Merit Awards.

Alumni Merit Award winners are Bill Burch of Sikeston, Mo., Dr. Melvin Kasten of Cape Girardeau, Ellen Gunter McDowell of Lees Summit, Mo., Robert J. Rauscher of Hobson, Mont., Donald G. Revelle of Wesley Chapel, Fla., and Linda M. Wells of Phoenix, Ariz.

Dr. Walt Lilly, a Southeast biology professor, will receive the Faculty Merit Award, school officials announced.

The six alumni will receive the Alumni Merit Award and the faculty member will receive the annual Faculty Merit Award when they are honored during Homecoming festivities on Oct. 18.

The Merit Award dinner is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. in the Show Me Center. Tickets are available by calling the alumni office at 651-5159 or 651-2259.

Alumni Merit awards have been given annually since 1958 to graduates of Southeast who have brought distinction to themselves and the university.

The Faculty Merit Award is presented for excellence in teaching.

Burch, a 1957 graduate with a degree in agriculture, is being honored by Southeast's School of Polytechnic Studies. He is the chief executive officer and owner of Burch Food Services in Sikeston. He has served as mayor and city councilman in Sikeston.

Kasten, a Cape Girardeau native, is being honored by the College of Science and Mathematics. He is a retired general surgery physician. During his career, he was chief of staff at Southeast Missouri Hospital from 1973 to 1974 and at St. Francis Medical Center from 1968 to 1969. He also was chief of surgery at both hospitals and was a member of the Cape Girardeau City Council from 1992 to 2000. He graduated from Southeast in 1949 with a degree in biology and chemistry.

McDowell is being honored by the College of Health and Human Services. She graduated from Southeast in 1973 with an associate of arts degree in nursing and obtained a master's degree in administration from Southeast in 1987. She currently is the clinical research manager at Regulatory/Clinical Consultants Inc. in Lee's Summit and president of The McDowell Group. She was the 1985 Outstanding Alumnus of the Year for Southeast's nursing department.

Rauscher is a retired group vice president of marketing for Amoco Oil Corp. in Chicago. A 1959 graduate of Southeast with a degree in business administration, Rauscher is being honored by the Donald L. Harrison College of Business.

Revelle serves as president and chief executive officer of Syzygy Associates in Orwell, Ohio, consultants to industry, health care and military clients. He has lectured at major universities, including Harvard Business School. He graduated from Southeast in 1952 with a degree in social and political science. He is being honored by the College of Liberal Arts.

Wells is the head softball coach at Arizona State University in Tempe, Ariz., a position she has held since 1989.

She graduated from Southeast in 1972 with a physical education degree. While at Southeast, she lettered in softball, volleyball, basketball, tennis and field hockey. She is being honored by the College of Education.

Lilly, the Faculty Merit winner, has served on the Southeast faculty since 1982.

In addition to teaching biology, he serves as the university's radiation safety officer. Lilly has directed more than 40 undergraduate research projects and 10 graduate students' master's thesis research.

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