NMU alumna Kathryn Davis Messerich (BS ‘79) made a successful transition from nursing to a legal career. As chief judge of Minnesota's first judicial district, she has used her dual training presiding in juvenile court and previously in two drug courts. “The nursing background was incredibly helpful in understanding the scientific and medical issues associated with addiction and mental health,” said Messerich in a "Minnesota Lawyer" feature.
Mary Nash ('74 BSN) has announced her plans to retire in October after 43 years in nursing. She serves as chief nursing and patient care services officer for The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and also associate vice president for health sciences and assistant dean for clinical affairs at the OSU College of Nursing.
Heidi Kattula ('98 MA) was a unanimous choice to become the new superintendent of East Grand Rapids Public Schools, effective Aug. 1. The board announced that it selected Kattula for "her strength in collaboration, her ability to increase student achievement through inclusion and accountability, and her experience in instructional leadership across all grade levels." She has 26 years of experience in public education, according to an EGRPS news release.
A collaboration between NMU and NASA began this week. Contractors are transporting instruments to Granite Island to set up an offshore solar radiation-monitoring site for NASA’s Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System (CERES) experiment. CERES has been measuring Earth’s radiation via satellite for more than 30 years. In an effort to validate that data through ground measures—ideally over water, far from land contamination—NASA selected a Lake Superior location after decommissioning a previous Chesapeake Bay site because of safety issues. The goal is that analyses of CERES data will lead to a better understanding of the role of clouds and the energy cycle in global climate change.
NMU alumnus Paul Lauria ('95 BS) is among Gov. Rick Snyder's initial appointees to the School Safety Task Force. Lauria will represent law enforcement. He is chief of police for the Mt. Pleasant Department of Public Safety. The task force will identify structural and policy recommendations for collaboration, planning and assessment of school infrastructure and safety policies. It also will analyze top-performing states to determine best practices for law enforcement and preventative policies before submitting a final report to the governor no later than Nov. 30.