Joan North, Dean of the College of Professional Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, has won the 2006 Outstanding Achievement Award presented by Wisconsin Women in Higher Education Leadership (WWHEL). The announcement came at the annual WWHEL state conference held October 26-27 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
“Dr. North has been a superb mentor and role model for women in academia,” said Mari McCarty, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities and the current WWHEL state president. “She exemplifies the spirit of excellence that WWHEL strives to foster among all involved in higher education in the state.”
A founding member of WWHEL, Dean North has supported the advancement of women and minorities in higher education throughout her career. Under her leadership, the UW-Stevens Point WWHEL Advisory Board developed recommendations leading to internships through which women could gain the experience and insight necessary to move forward into administration. A series of First Friday Breakfasts offered the opportunity for women to talk informally and share information, and with Dean North’s support, many new leaders were born. As Professor Joan Karlin of UWSP stated in her letter of recommendation, “Our conversation is no longer about the glass ceiling, but about the quality of our sunroof.” Another participant in those early meetings was Mary Mosier, Director of Career Services and Academic Advising at UWSP. She described the experience as “a leadership lab with hands-on, practical tips and constructive feedback.” In presenting the award, WWHEL president Mari McCarty said of Dean North, “She embodies the spirit and purpose of WWHEL.”