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50 Year Club

Join Us for the 50 Year Club Luncheon

Started in 1934, the 50 Year Club is celebrating its 89th anniversary. This stalwart group of Rams includes anyone who graduated 50 or more years ago from Colorado State University. Join us for the 2023 celebration!

The 50 Year Club Awards and Luncheon will take place on Friday, Oct. 13, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at Hilton Fort Collins, during Homecoming and Family Weekend. More information and registration details coming soon.

Award Nomination Info

Nominations for the 2023 awards are now open! If you would like to submit a nomination, please click here. Nominations are due on or before May 26, 2023.

Scene at 50 Year Club Luncheon

Outstanding Recognition Awards

Each year, the Colorado State University Alumni Association and 50 Year Club Committee recognize two alumni who graduated at least 50 years ago for career achievement and public service.

The Career Achievement Award identifies and recognizes an alum who is recognized as outstanding in their occupation, field, or profession by peers in that industry, who has brought honor to Colorado State University and to themselves.

The Public Service Award identifies and recognizes an outstanding alum who is recognized by the University community and also by the alum’s community as someone who has contributed works of public service (e.g., government, clubs, charities, or organizations that are not industry or profession oriented).

Scene at 50 Year Club Luncheon
Scene at 50 Year Club Luncheon
Scene at 50 Year Club Luncheon

Congrats to the 2022 Award Recipients!

Career Achievement Award: Len Carpenter

Dr. Len Carpenter (B.S., ’68; Ph.D., ’76) is a native Coloradan who grew up on a cattle ranch in the San Luis Valley before attending CSU for a degree in wildlife biology. Following graduation, he worked as a research assistant collecting data on mule deer and their habitats in north-central Colorado. That experience solidified his career choice, and he returned to CSU to earn a Ph.D. in range science.

During Len’s career, he wrote nearly 70 manuscripts for scientific journals and books based on his fieldwork, focused mostly on collecting and analyzing research data on deer, elk, and moose. He has chaired or participated in dozens of professional conferences, assisted in developing wildlife policies, directed terrestrial wildlife programs, supervised long-term research projects conducted by the Colorado Division of Wildlife, as well as coordinated and reviewed wildlife programs throughout an eight-state region for the Wildlife Management Institute.

Career Achievement Award Winner Len Carpenter

Len also volunteered in numerous leadership roles with The Wildlife Society, which is the international society for professional wildlife biologists and globally advocates for wildlife conservation and management. He has the distinction of being elected president three times to serve at each level in the Society: the Colorado Chapter, the Central Mountains & Plains Section, and the national/international office.

Len’s dedication has earned him national recognition and several awards, such as the Douglas L. Gilbert Award for Outstanding Professional Achievement in Wildlife Sciences, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Award for Outstanding Contributions to Management of Colorado’s Wildlife, and a Meritorious Service Award for Outstanding Contributions from the Colorado Chapter of The Wildlife Society.

One of Len’s strengths is his lifetime relationship with his wife Jan (B.A., ’67; CERT., ’67), with whom he grew up in south-central Colorado. Jan, an educator, taught junior high students throughout her career. Beyond the couple’s professional accomplishments, they are longtime CSU athletics fans, members of the Ram Club, and support scholarships for student-athletes through the Rams Legacy of Champions program. In 2014, the Carpenters were given the Larry LaSasso Spirit Award in honor of their enduring and exceptional display of spirit and enthusiasm in support of CSU athletics.

Public Service Award: Maxine Schultz

The year Maxine Henke Schultz (B.S., ’60) graduated, the Associated Students of Colorado State University named her a “Pacemaker of the Class of 1960.” Her many activities as a student heralded big things for the future, and she has certainly lived up to the title.

A day after graduation, Maxine married Robert J. Schultz (B.S., ’61), who was a cadet in the Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps. In 1961, he began serving in the Army Nuclear Defense Laboratory and subsequently worked in the nuclear and energy industry. During those years, the couple lived in 10 states and had three children. While her children were in school, Maxine became involved in public education, serving in parent-teacher organizations, coaching girls in multiple sports, and teaching science, health, and physical education in three states thanks to her degree from CSU. As a lifetime member of the Girl Scouts of the United States of America, she also touched the lives of thousands of young women while serving in numerous leadership positions during her more than 60 years with the organization.

Public Service Award Winner Maxine Schultz

According to those who have worked with her, Maxine’s commitment to her community is unmatched. After the family settled in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, she volunteered with the Clinch River Habitat for Humanity, the Red Cross of East Tennessee, the National Red Cross Disaster Relief Team, and the Oak Ridge Ecumenical Storehouse, and taught Red Cross first aid and swim classes for more than 50 years.

Maxine has dedicated a large portion of her volunteer effort and leadership skills to churches she has attended and various charitable organizations associated with them. At the First United Methodist Church Oak Ridge, she started an Adult Humanitarian Missions program, which has grown during the past 19 years from a single mission trip to Honduras to 68 teams serving in five countries. That program is now estimated to have improved the health and lives of more than 40,000 people worldwide. Through the years, she has led or participated in 64 humanitarian mission trips to seven countries, including Kenya, South Sudan, Honduras (24 times), Nicaragua, Haiti, Panama, and several states in the U.S.

In addition to her personal accomplishments, Maxine became the founding CEO and president of Smoky Mountain Management Services, a technical management consulting firm contracting with the U.S. Department of Energy. She is also an ardent traveler. In addition to performing foreign mission work, she has visited more than 80 countries.

Nomination Info

Nominations for the 2023 awards are now open! Click below to nominate.

Award Criteria

Criteria for the Career Achievement and Public Service Recognition awards are similar. Please review the criteria carefully to determine which award would most appropriately express your nominee’s achievements.
We will recognize two alumni who are graduates of 50 or more years.

The CAREER ACHIEVEMENT AWARD identifies and recognizes an alum who is recognized as outstanding in their occupation, field, or profession by peers in that industry, who has brought honor to Colorado State University and to themselves.

The PUBLIC SERVICE AWARD identifies and recognizes an outstanding alum who is recognized by the University community and also by the alum’s community as someone who has contributed works of public service (e.g., government, clubs, charities, or organizations that are not industry or profession oriented).

Award Criteria

All nominees must have graduated from CSU or Colorado A&M at least 50 years ago.

The CAREER ACHIEVEMENT AWARD candidate must also have:

  • A demonstrated record of distinction in their field.
  • Received recognition in their career through awards or honors locally, nationally, or internationally.
  • Demonstrated a lifelong history of accomplishments and activities in their field.
  • Demonstrated leadership in professional organizations.

The PUBLIC SERVICE AWARD candidate must also have:

  • Provided outstanding public service to their community.
  • Provided service to their charitable or religious organization.
  • Provided service to local, state, or national government.
  • Provided service to medical or environmental well-being of humankind.
  • Provided service to Colorado State University.

How to Nominate Someone for an Award

  1. Submit the nomination form online or download (print, complete, and mail). The nomination form must be completely filled out for full consideration.
  2. If you would like to update or add to your previously submitted nomination, it must be resubmitted by the deadline.
  3. Nominations are automatically rolled over an additional two years past the initial submission.
  4. Be as specific as possible, and attach additional sheets as needed. Please type if possible.
  5. Please attach one letter of recommendation from those who are familiar with the nominee’s accomplishments and service if available.
  6. Please attach copies of up to two (2) articles, photographs, or other supporting information.
  7. Before you nominate someone, please be sure you are addressing criteria in the category for which you are nominating them. Each candidate may only be nominated for ONE award: either the Career Achievement Award OR the Public Service Award.

Nomination Forms and Instructions

Select one of the following options to submit a nomination. Please be sure you read and understand the nomination information.

1. Onlne: Use the online form to submit a nomination. We highly recommend using Microsoft Word (or similar program) to type your answers, then copy and paste them into the form.

2. Print: Download, print, and complete a nomination form. Return via email or mail (contact info below).

Colorado State University Alumni Association
7114 Campus Delivery
Fort Collins, CO 80523-7114
E-mail: csualumni@colostate.edu. If e-mailing, please be sure to include the appropriate attachments.


PUBLIC SERVICE AWARD nomination form.

Past Recipients

1987: Raymond Kissock (’14)
1988: Bruce Thornton (’18, 27)
1989: Jasper French (’39)
1990: Stew Case (’41)
1991: Jim (’40) and Nadine (’41) Henry
1992: Larry LaSasso (’34)
1993: Lois Smith (’40) and Lola Case (’40)
1994: Cecil Hellbusch (’30)
1995: Cecil Staver (’30, ’53)
1996: Charles Dale Rea (’36)
1997: John Toliver (’34)
1998: Wendell King (’30)
1999: Norm Cable (’38)
2000: Elizabeth Case (’42)
2001: G. Owen Smith (’47, ’50)
2002: John Matsushima (’43, ’45)
2003: Leona M. Heilman (’51)
2004: Robert Shideler (’48)
2005: Nicholas H. Booth, D.V.M. (’51)
2006: Dr. M. Joan (Ouderkirk) Cromer (’53)
2007: Cleon Kimberling, D.V.M. (’51, ’59)
2008: Everett Richardson, Ph.D. (’49, ’60, ’65)
2009: Eugene “Gene” Markley (’47)
2010: Robert Phillips, D.V.M. (’59, ’61) Career Achievement Award
2010: Alvie Rothe (’57, ’61) Public Service Award
2011: Anthony Sroka, Ph.D. (’51) Career Achievement Award
2011: Robert Briggs, Jr. (’59, ’61) Public Service Award
2012: Dr. Carl Burtis, Jr. (’59) Career Achievement Award
2012: Robert Sweeney (’59) Public Service Award
2013: Jim Coleman (’56) Career Achievement Award
2013: Bill Erickson (’51) Public Service Award
2014: Karen Ostermiller (’59) Career Achievement Award
2014: Tom Nix (’50) Public Service Award
2015: Mike Rosser (’64) Career Achievement Award
2015: Dale Yonker (’63) Public Service Award
2016: Donald Rutledge (’62) Career Achievement Award
2016: Polly Baca (’62) Public Service Award
2016: Ingmar “John” Olsen (’48) Distinguished Achievement Award (special award given in 2016 only)
2017: Delbert “Kent” Nelson (’61) Career Service Award
2017: Franklin Anderson (’56) Public Service Award
2017: Robert Miller, D.V.M. (’56) Distinguished Achievement Award
2018: Kenneth Goldsberry (B.S., ’54; M.S., ’62) Career Achievement Award
2018: Jack Welch (B.S., ’68; CERT, ’68) Public Service Award
2018: Jon Larsen (B.S., ’64) Achievement in Science Award
2019: Charlie Vail, D.V.M. (’58, ’60) Career Achievement Award
2019: Lt. Col. Robert W. Johnson, USAF (Retired) (’68) Public Service Award
2021: Thaine Michie (B.S., ’63) Career Achievement Award
2021: Vivian Lee Kerr (B.S., ’69; M.Ed., ’77) Public Service Award
2021: Charles (Chuck) Sylvester (B.S., ’61; M.Agr., ’86) Exceptional Achievement for National Western Stock Show Award

If you are interested in joining the 50 Year Club or for more info, please email Lisa Hansen.