THIEL COLLEGE HOLDS ANNUAL FOUNDERS' DAY CONVOCATION
Fred & Jill Haer receive the Louis & Barbara Thiel Distinguished Service Award
Feb. 4 , 2010
GREENVILLE, PA – Today, Thiel College paid tribute to 10 faculty and staff members and Jill ’66 and Fred Haer ’65 at the college’s annual Founders’ Day convocation in the Lutheran Heritage Room of the Howard Miller Student Center.
President Troy D. VanAken presented the A. Louis and Barbara Thiel Distinguished Service Award to the Haers, who are founders and owners of FHC, Inc., an international company that designs, manufactures and markets medical equipment for brain research and clinics to target disfunctioning brain structures during neurosurgery.
After graduating from Thiel with a major in chemistry in 1965, Fred attended the University of Michigan for graduate study in physical chemistry while Jill finished the bachelor’s degree she started at Thiel. Fred first worked at Gelman Instrument Company, where he was responsible for the conception and development of new biomedical products. In 1969, he moved to Transidyne General Corporation to serve as manager of biomedical marketing. Eighteen months later, Fred left to form his own company, Frederick Haer & Co., now FHC, Inc. Jill worked at FHC from the beginning in several capacities—from production to human resources to marketing—until her retirement in 2000.
Currently, FHC has 95 employees, including nine at Greenville Neuromodulation Services, the Greenville sales and technical support office.
Four years ago, FHC, Thiel College and UPMC Horizon, with support from Senator Bob Robbins and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, entered into a partnership that created the neuroscience major at Thiel, established Greenville Neuromodulation Services and put into motion plans for a Greenville Neuromodulation Clinic—a clinical treatment facility to perform deep brain stimulation implants on patients needing cranial neuromodulation therapies, chiefly for movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease. The clinic has purchased the historic Packard Building in Greenville and is renovating it to include clinic and research offices as well as a 12-room inn for patients and their families.
The Haers, who live in Brunswick, Maine, also have been dedicated to their alma mater—Fred has served as a member of the Thiel College Board of Trustees from 1998 to 2007 and was awarded the Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2000. Fred and Jill chaired the campaign for the Paul W. Bush ’66 Memorial Fitness Center. Jill has been active in her community, serving on boards and committees with the MS Society, Hospice of Maine, the United Way of Midcoast Maine and the Midcoast Hospital.
The A. Louis and Barbara Thiel Distinguished Service Award is presented annually to community members who demonstrate exemplary character, continuity of leadership, and long-term service to Greenville and its environs. The recipients must demonstrate a commitment to the common good above private interests.
The award is named after A. Louis and Barbara Thiel, whose generosity made possible the founding of Thiel College in 1866. The Thiels dedicated themselves to the welfare of others. The German couple immigrated to western Pennsylvania in the 1840s, and as their work was blessed with success, they faithfully served family, community and church.
Receiving the prestigious Professor of the Year Award posthumously was M.J. Yusko-Howsare, professor of economics and business administration. Yusko-Howsare, of Delaware Township, Pa., passed away in July 2009.
For 29 years, Yusko-Howsare was a valued member of Thiel’s Business Administration Department where she taught the core courses in the accounting major. In fact, Yusko-Howsare laid the foundation for literally hundreds of students in accounting who went on to achieve great success in their field after completing the Thiel accounting program. She served as the department’s representative on the Faculty Council since its inception and served many times on the executive committee of the council. She also was a member of the Promotion and Tenure Committee and most recently on the Presidential Search Committee. In addition, she was an adviser to Alpha Chi National Honorary Fraternity.
Yusko-Howsare earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accounting from Pennsylvania State University, and was licensed as a certified public accountant.
Other faculty members earning recognition were:
Five staff awards also were presented during the ceremony. Receiving honors were:
About Thiel College
Founded in 1866, Thiel College is a liberal arts, sciences and professional studies institution located in Greenville, Pa., that provides a great balance of academic challenge, personal and social involvement, and exceptional value to its 1,000 students. For more information about Thiel College, which is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, visit www.thiel.edu or call 800-24-THIEL.