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Office of Advancement

McClain Hall 100

100 E. Normal St.

Kirksville, Mo. 63501

(800) 452-6678

(660) 785-4133






























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2008 Homecoming Honorees


The Homecoming honorees will receive special recognition at the Alumni and Friends Celebration/Hall of Fame Banquet, Friday, Oct. 3, 2008, 6 p.m., Georgian Room, Student Union Building. Tickets are $17 for adults and $10 for children ages 10 and under (see "Tickets/Registration"). The honorees will also be introduced at half-time of the Homecoming football game in Stokes Stadium, Saturday, Oct. 4, 2008.

Alumni of the Year
Lanny (’62, ’64) & Beth (Fisher) Morley (’63)

Lanny and Beth (Fisher) Morley, both natives of Green City, Mo., were married in 1961 while attending Truman State University. Lanny, who was a member of Blue Key and Sigma Tau Gamma, graduated in 1962 with a bachelor of science degree in mathematics. Beth was a member of Cardinal Key and Alpha Sigma Alpha and graduated in 1963 with a bachelor of science degree in business education.

Lanny began his career as a mathematics teacher at Kirksville Jr. High, and later taught at Northwestern High School in Mendon, Mo. Meanwhile, Beth worked in an accounting office in Brookfield, Mo. In 1964 Lanny earned his master’s degree in mathematics education from Truman State University.

Lanny continued to further his education by earning a master’s degree in mathematics from the University of Illinois in 1966, and after receiving a Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1970, he joined the Truman faculty as an assistant professor of mathematics. Twelve years later, he became the division head of Mathematics and Computer Science, and in 1994 he served as acting vice president for Academic Affairs. Later in 1997, he returned as the division head (dean) of Mathematics and Computer Science. Lanny was also active in numerous University committees and professional organizations, as well as a variety of church activities. 

After the couple welcomed their first child, Beth became a full-time homemaker and volunteered in various service organizations. She also taught night classes and typed doctoral dissertations. Beth devoted herself to family, church, and volunteer work, with special attention to caring for and nurturing their four children.

All four of the Morleys' children attended Truman State University. Sara received a bachelor of science in education, Tricia received a bachelor of arts in English and a master’s in communication disorders, David received a bachelor of science in computer science, and Daniel studied accounting for two years before finishing his degree at the University of Missouri-Columbia. In addition, numerous other family members hold degrees from Truman or studied at the university for significant periods of time, including a daughter-in-law and two sons-in-law, Beth’s father and her four sisters, and Lanny’s mother, brother, sister-in-law, and several cousins.

In 2007, after serving on the Truman faculty and administration for 37 years, Lanny retired as professor emeritus of mathematics and dean emeritus of mathematics and computer science. In retirement the Morleys enjoy the beauties of nature at their home near Thousand Hills State Park and the increased freedom to travel and spend time with family.



Young Alumna of the Year

Erin Lesczynski (’02)

Erin Lesczynski, of Alexandria, Va., works in international relations for the federal government in Washington, D.C.

A Pershing Scholar, Erin graduated from Truman in 2002 with a B.S. and B.A. in political science. While attending Truman she served as the 2002 Homecoming chair, president of Alpha Sigma Alpha, a student ambassador, and a member of Omicron Delta Kappa and Phi Eta Sigma.  As part of her college experience, Erin studied abroad with the Missouri-London program, interned with Congressman Kenny Hulshof in Washington, D.C., and participated in Missouri’s International Business Internship Exchange program in Monterrey, Mexico.

In 2004, Erin earned a master's degree in international affairs from Texas A&M University, and she interned with the U.S. Department of State at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations in New York City.

Erin currently serves as vice president of Truman State University's Mid-Atlantic Alumni Chapter. She is also a member of Truman’s Alumni Association Board of Directors serving as vice chair of the board’s Chapter Development Committee.

Erin graduated as valedictorian from Kirksville High School in 1998.  She is the daughter of Bettie and the late David Lesczynski. David was a professor of agricultural science at Truman for 18 years, and Bettie is director of the Catholic Newman Center in Kirksville.  Erin’s sister Megan is a 2007 Truman graduate and she teaches high school in San Antonio, Texas.  Her brother Kevin is a veterinarian in Marble Falls, Texas.



Distinguished Service Award
Ron (‘82) and Elsie (Kins) Gaber ('87)

Ron and Elsie Gaber have had a passion for serving higher education and the healthcare profession since the beginning of their careers. The Gabers, who have been married for 32 years, have been servants in the Kirksville community for more than three decades. Ron currently serves as vice president for Student and Alumni Services for A.T. Still University-Missouri/Arizona and is also an associate professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine. Elsie is the associate dean for A.T. Still University’s online School of Health Management.

A native of Rhinelander, Wisconsin, Ron received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse and his specialist degree in education from Truman State University in 1982.

Elsie received her bachelor’s degree in English and psychology and master’s in education from Eastern Illinois University. She earned her education specialist degree from Truman State University in 1987, and completed her Ph.D. in administration at Walden University in 1994.

The Gabers have many professional and service accomplishments. Ron served as the director of Housing and Residence Life for 12 years at Truman State University where he focused on student development and the creation of living/learning communities, transforming Residence Life at Truman State University. The Housing and Residence Life program gained a national reputation for its student development model and attracted residence life staff from throughout the nation during his tenure. Ron was also elected president of the Upper Midwest Association of College and University Housing Officers and later elected as an executive board member of the national Association. Upon his departure from Truman, residence life staff and students established the Gaber Residence Life Achievement Award Scholarship, which is given annually to deserving student residence life leaders.

In 1988 Ron accepted the dean of Students position at Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine (KCOM). Today, as vice president for Student and Alumni Services at A.T. Still University, he is a University officer and is responsible for approximately 50 staff members from the Missouri and Arizona campuses. His main focus in the healthcare profession has been to create co-curricular educational and support programs that nurture student wellness, professionalism, leadership, and service. Additionally, Ron has taught college courses and conducted community seminars on death and dying for 30 years. He is the author of The Death of Adult Children through the Eyes of Grieving Parents.

Ron has also been very involved in community organizations and service. His leadership includes: president and founder of the regional Hospice, chairman of the 2000 Adair County Census Committee, president of Phi Delta Kappa, chairman of the Hazel Creek Concerned Citizens Committee, president of the Rotary Club of Kirksville, member of Smoke Free Kirksville, chairman of the Truman and KCOM United Way, member of the Benevolent Giving Society, co-chair of the Rotary Park Planning Committee and involvement in numerous other service projects. Some of his service awards include: the Distinguished Service Award in 2004 presented by the KCOM Alumni Association, the Four-Way Test Award by the Rotary Club of Kirksville in 2005, and the George Windsor Award for fairness, intelligence, loyalty and service by the A.T. Still University Board of Trustees in 2006. Ron and Elsie also received the Distinguished Patron Award from the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2007.

Elsie began her career as a vocational specialist with KCOM, and in 1980, she became an academic advisor for Truman State University. In 1993, she was one of two first recipients of the O’Donnell-Lee Advising Award which honors outstanding academic advisors at Truman. In 1996, Elsie moved back to ATSU to serve as assistant vice president of Institutional Support. She became AVP of Community Developments then AVP of University Relations prior to assuming her current position associate dean of the online ATSU-School of Health Management in 2003.

While she was AVP of Community Developments, she helped facilitate the concept, design, and construction of St. Andrews, a senior living campus consisting of an apartment/community center complex. Elsie wanted to expose students and healthcare professionals to an active living/learning environment of seniors where not only the pathologies of aging can be examined, but more importantly, the tenants of healthy aging can be understood first-hand. Through a MHDC tax credit project, MDED block grant, the expertise of senior campus professional development group, and the educational expertise of ATSU, the 50-unit independent living apartments and the senior community center were opened in May 2005.

Like Ron, Elsie has been very active in community and service organizations. She chaired the Highway 63 Transportation Corporation that partnered with MoDOT, Koch, Inc., and the citizens of Kirksville to build the highway that connects Macon to Millard ahead of schedule by opening in October 2005. In 1990, she was awarded the Missouri Outstanding Leader by Women of Today, and in 1999, she served as the first woman president of Kirksville 1000 Hills Rotary Club (and one of seven for the state of Missouri). She was president of Phi Delta Kappa and chairperson of the Truman and KCOM United Way drives. In 1996, she was the Rotary International Group Study Exchange Leader to Norway, and she was honored with the Four Avenues of Service Recognition Award presented by Rotary International in 2001.

 In 2005, she chaired the Rotary Centennial Project for her club; the project created the Energy Trail that connects the Senior Center to ATSU Student Center. As a charter member of the Kirksville 1000 Hills Rotary Club, vice president of the Kirksville Area Chamber of Commerce, and member of Kirksville Master Gardeners, she envisioned the opportunity for the Rotary Centennial Project to be a merger of missions that would better serve the health of the Kirksville community. Her belief is that the need for a healthy community is the key to the health of the citizens and guests within a community.

The Gabers dedicated the Gaber Solar Clock Garden adjacent to Magruder Hall in honor of the outstanding Truman science faculty and residence life staff. They reside in Kirksville, Mo., and are members of Truman’s Northeast Missouri Alumni Chapter and the Pershing Circle.


Distinguished Service Award
G. Ruth (Black) Mach

G. Ruth (Black) Mach, of St. Louis, Mo., has built a reputation as an innovative and effective educator throughout her career. She currently serves as a consultant for the School District of Clayton (Mo.) and director of substitute teacher orientations.

From 2004-2008, Ruth was the assistant superintendent for middle and elementary schools in the St. Louis Public Schools. Prior to that she served as an elementary principal in the School District of Clayton for 21 years, and under her guidance, Meramec Elementary School was among the first schools in the State of Missouri to be honored as a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence (1986). Upon her retirement from the Meramec Elementary School District in 2004, the City of St. Louis proclaimed April 9, 2004, as “Dr. Ruth Mach Day” and the City of Clayton proclaimed May 20, 2004, as “G. Ruth Mach Day.” In prior years, Ruth served as the director of reading and as the elementary principal in the School District of Mehlville and taught in the Lindbergh and Affton School Districts.

Ruth received a bachelor of science in education from Truman State University and went on to earn a master of education degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia and a doctorate in educational administration from St. Louis University. Her post-graduate certification includes: superintendent’s certification, teacher of the behaviorally disturbed, teacher of learning disabled, elementary administration, and reading specialist.

During her tenure as a student at Truman, Ruth was actively involved in campus activities including Alpha Sigma Alpha, Cardinal Key, Pi Kappa Delta, Kappa Delta Pi, Speech and Forensics, and was a cheerleader. She was appointed to the Truman State University Board of Governors in 1995 and served as a member of the Board from February 1995 to April 2007, serving as secretary in 1997 and 2004, vice president in 1999 and 2005, and president of the board in 1998 and 2006. She continued her presidency through 2007. Ruth also served on the Truman State University Foundation Board for many years.

Throughout her career, Ruth has accumulated a number of honors and recognition including Distinguished Principal Awards presented by the Missouri Association of Elementary School Principals and the St. Louis Suburban Principals Association. In addition, she was awarded a Certificate of Honor from the United States Department of Education as principal of an elementary school achieving national exemplary status, a Certificate of Honor from the National Association of Elementary School Principals as principal of a nationally honored elementary school, and a Certificate of Honor from the Missouri Association of Elementary School for being one of 11 nominees for the first national United States Department of Education Elementary School Award.

Ruth is a member and past president of the St. Louis Principal’s Association; the St. Louis Suburban International Reading Association; and Kappa Delta Pi, a national education honorary organization. She is a member of the board of directors for Aim High (a partnership between St. Louis Priory School and John Burroughs School), and she also serves on the Magic House Educational Advisory Board and the St. Louis Post Dispatch Advisory Board of Educational Publications.

Ruth is a member of Truman State University’s John R. Kirk Society. Her husband, Stan (recently deceased), was also a graduate of Truman. They have two sons, Steven and David.


Distinguished Service Award
Wilma (Rayfield) Maddox (’79)

Wilma (Rayfield) Maddox is the business manager for Vision Care Associates, LLC in Macon, Mo. She graduated from Truman magna cum laude in 1979 earning a bachelor of science degree and was a member of the Truman State University Board of Governors from December 1993 to March 2008, serving as secretary in 1995, vice president in 1996, and president in 1997. She served two terms, 1993 to 1999 and 1999 to 2005.

Wilma and her husband Mark are members of Truman’s Pershing Circle, and in honor of their ongoing connection to the university, the couple established a scholarship in 2007 to encourage students to participate in a study-abroad experience at Truman. Their two daughters, Sarah ('06, '08) and Rebecca ('07), both Truman graduates, participated in study-abroad programs while attending the university.

Wilma is an active member of the Macon United Methodist Church. She is also a member of the Truman State University Chapter of The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi and is past president of the Missouri Affiliate of the American Foundation for Vision Awareness.  She served on the Missouri K-16 Coalition, the Board of Education of the Macon County R-1 School District, and the board of the Wesley Foundation of Kirksville. They have two sons and two daughters, and three grandchildren.



Parade Grand Marshals
Stan & Doris (Pickens) Bohon (’43)

Stan and Doris (Pickens) Bohon ('43), of Kirksville, Mo., will serve as Grand Marshals of Truman State University’s 2008 Homecoming Parade. A Kirksville native, Stan graduated from Kirksville High School and spent three years as a student at Truman State University where he was active in Sigma Tau Gamma Fraternity and Blue Key. He then attended the University of Missouri School of Dentistry, graduating in 1946. Stan was an Army Captain serving in the 24th Division, 19th Infantry as chief regimental dental officer in Occupied Japan.

Doris grew up on a farm south of Green City, Mo., graduating from Green City High School in 1939, and she earned a bachelor of science in education with two majors ― business education and physical education ― from Truman State University in 1943. While attending Truman, she was active in Alpha Sigma Alpha social sorority, Cardinal Key, Pi Omega Pi, and the Women's Athletic Association. As students at the university, Stan and Doris met in Dr. Selby's typing class. Stan says, “One look at Doris and I knew I had met the woman I wanted to spend the rest of my life with.”  Doris took more convincing, but says, "I was just playing hard to get!"  They were married in December 1944. Stan joined his father and brother in the Bohon Dental Group in Kirksville. He retired in 1991.

Doris served on the Truman State University Foundation Board for six years, and Stan and Doris are members of the Truman Northeast Missouri Alumni Chapter, the John R. Kirk Society and the Pershing Circle. Stan and Doris have been active in the Kirksville community, and both have served as elders and clerks of session at the First Presbyterian Church in Kirksville. Stan is past president of the NEMO Dental Society and the Kirksville Lions Club. Doris is past president of the Sojourners Club and the Becky Thatcher area Girl Scout Council, and she also served as a Troop Leader in Kirksville. In 1981, Doris received the Citizen of the Year Award presented by the Kirksville Area Chamber of Commerce, and she has been active in the Monday Club and the Chapter CW of PEO.

The Bohons have three children:  Rick, a dentist in Columbia, Mo.; Connie, a physician in the Washington, D.C. area; and Libby, a dental hygienist working with husband and dentist Don Riley of Kirksville. Libby is a 1982 Truman graduate and attended dental hygienist school in Kansas City where her father attended and where she met husband Don. In addition to their three children, Stan and Doris have seven grandchildren. The couple spends the winters in Florida but they say, "Kirksville will always be home!" 



Athletics Hall of Fame Inductee
John and Melissa Ware (87)
- Former Sports Information Director (posthumous award)

The Ware’s put nearly 39 combine years of service to the Truman community from the mid 1980’s until 2004.

John came to Kirksville as an assistant football coach under Jack Ball in 1985 and he served in that capacity until 1994. The next year, John was named the 19th Head Coach in Bulldog football history and won 54 games over the next nine seasons which is third all-time behind Maurice “Red” Wade’s 99 and Don Faurot’s 63 coaching wins.

John left the University to become head football coach at Missouri Southern State University for the 2004 season. John passed away on Sept. 27, 2005, the week the Bulldogs were to play the Lions in Joplin.

Melissa was a graduate of Truman in 1987 and began working for the University full-time as Publications Coordinator and Office Manager in 1988 under Sports Information Director Bill Cable.

When Cable retired in 1995, Ware was named only the second SID at the school and she served in that capacity until May 2004.

Under Melissa’s direction, the Sports Information Office was the recipient of over 40 national awards for media guides from the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Melissa passed away on November 30, 2007 after a long battle with cancer.



Athletics Hall of Fame Inductee
Alec Meinke (83)
- Football/Track & Field

Meinke was a two-sport athlete for the Bulldogs participating in football and track from 1979-1983. As a member of the Bulldog football team, Meinke was a four-year letterwinner and named second team all-MIAA in 1981 and 1982. He was a member of back-to-back conference championship squads in those years. The 1982 squad went 9-2 under Coach Bruce Craddock and were ranked fourth in the nation and participated in their first NCAA Division II playoff game against Jacksonville St.

As a shot putter for Coach Kenny Gardner, Meinke won seven MIAA titles from 1980 to 1983. He was a three year Division II shot put finalist with seventh-place finish in 1983. Meinke currently holds both the Truman Indoor and Outdoor shot put record, set back in 1981 at 17.88 m (Indoor) and 17.69 m (Outdoor).



Athletics Hall of Fame Inductee
Stephen Schieppe (
- Men’s Basketball

Schieppe averaged 17.1 points per game during his four-year Bulldog basketball career. He finished in 1991 at the all-time leading scoring in Truman history with 1,796 points only to be eclipsed by Cory Parker’s 1,835 in 2000. The three-point sharp shooter still owns the school record with 300 triples made and is fourth all-time in three-point field goal percentage at 43.6%. Schieppe is also the career leader in field goals made with 652, 42 more than second place David Winslow.

Schieppe’s 528 points during the 1990-91 season is tied for fourth all-time as he hit 101 three-pointers that season. He ended the year fifth in the league in points per game at 18.8 and was first in three-pointers per game at 3.61. Schieppe was named all-conference second team for the second time in his career and to the National Basketball Coaches Association all-district second team that season.

Following his Bulldog career, Schieppe played and coached one year for Gimle, a team in the Norwegian professional league.



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