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WSSCA Awards
and Recognition

Ensuring the safety of students, staff and visitors in Wisconsin schools is an extremely important and enormous responsibility.


WSSCA is very fortunate to count among its ranks many outstanding professionals who work tirelessly on behalf of their schools to provide a safe & secure learning and working environment. Recognizing excellence in school safety leadership highlights the extraordinary work our members, and those supporting their efforts, are doing throughout Wisconsin, each and every day.

In recognition of the tremendous work our members perform and to the individuals dedicated to supporting our members and our association’s work, WSSCA has created the following awards and recognition opportunities to honor those who truly go above and beyond in their service to their school or school district, their community and WSSCA. 

  • School Safety Coordination of the Year (Annual Award)

  • Lifetime Achievement

  • Friend of WSSCA

The application / nomination period is open through December 15 each year. 


Through our Coordinator of the Year Award, we recognize one of our WSSCA members who have demonstrated leadership, innovation and special skills and talents that have contributed to the improvement and maintenance of high-quality safety and security environments in their schools and communities.

The WSSCA School Safety Coordinator of the Year Award is co-sponsored by Community Insurance Corporation, which will present a $1,000 award to the winner’s school district safety program. 

The award is presented at our annual conference each year.


Leadership for district or school program change

The candidate has demonstrated leadership and has provided examples of a proven record of change in the dynamics of safety within the school and or district. Candidate has demonstrated sustained change over time in the implementation of safety programs for district or school compliance with standards.

Techniques developed or innovations used in program development including special projects.

The candidate has demonstrated the development of specialized techniques/innovations and has demonstrated excellence through the completion of specialized safety related projects.

Training and Specialized Skills.

The candidate has demonstrated a continuance in skill development and/or specialized skills used in the furtherance of the school safety program. The candidate possesses specialized skills learned through training or special programs. The candidate has demonstrated through examples of work, that the skills developed as part of ongoing training have lent themselves to the development of the safety program and the impetus to move the safety program.

Participation in WSSCA Events

The candidate is a member of WSSCA; has participated in WSSCA training opportunities offered through the association; has been involved as a board member or active participant in WSSCA. Graduation from the WSSCA Certification Course is an exceptional accomplishment and will be given special consideration by the judges. 

The School Safety Coordinator of the Year Award applications will be judged by the WSSCA Board of Directors and Advisors.


2024: Chad Whalley

Beaver Dam School District


2023: Jeremiah Johonson

Muskego-Norway School District

2022: John Stangler

Pewaukee School District

2021: Chris Collar

Green Bay Area School District

2020: Shelley Joan Weiss

Sun Prairie Area School District

2019: Carrie Hallquist

Eau Claire Area School District

2018: Mike Hinske

Big Foot Union High School

2017: Mary Stapenek and Denise Woodruff 

Waterford Graded School District

2016: Dale Zable and Laura Lloyd

Kettle Moraine School District

2015: Gary Siegman

Whitefish Bay School District

2014: Tom Wohlleber

Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District

2013: John Koster

Cedarburg School District

2012: Steve Lewis

Rice Lake Area School District

2011: Joe Bellomo

Waunakee Community School District

2010: Cindy VanPelt

Racine Unified School District

2009: Tom Grosjean

Ashland School District

2008: Tim Prunty

Antigo School District

2007: Mark Scullion

Monona Grove School District

2006: Robert Severson

Chippewa Falls Area Unified School District

2005: Erin Gauthier-Green

Greendale School District

2004: Ron Hoffman

Oconomowoc School District

2003: Warren Schmidt

West Bend School District

2002: Sam Hesse

Appleton Area School District

2001: Paul Buchholz

Beaver Dam School District

2000: Doug Reynolds

Beloit School District

1999: Douglas Fisk

Baraboo School District

1998: Lee Jorgenson

Schofield D.C. Everest

WSSCA Member Participation Award Program

The WSSCA Member Participation Award Program is designed to honor individual members whose
involvement in and contributions to our association are particularly noteworthy. It is awarded on an
annual basis at the WSSCA Annual Conference. Purpose of this award program is to encourage and
recognize membership engagement in our association. The program is voluntary and is conducted on
the honor system. Applicants are required to submit a Participation Award Program Submission Form
to the Executive Director at the conclusion of the calendar year (must be submitted by January 5th) in
order to determine eligibility. Email completed participation forms to

Points will be awarded, on a calendar year basis, for participation in the following activities:

  • Serve as a Sponsor at annual conference - 20 points

  • Recruit a New WSSCA Member - 20 points per recruit

  • Present a Session at the Annual Conference - 20 points

  • Serve on a WSSCA Committee - 20 points

  • Present at a WSSCA professional development session (2 or more hours) - 20 points per session

  • Present at professional development/training session (2 hours or more) at a WSSCA - sponsored event/program or on behalf of WSSCA at another association's conference event - 20 points per session

  • Serve as a WSSCA Board Member or Advisor - 20 points

  • Present at a professional development/training session (less than 2 hours) at a WSSCA - sponsored event/program or on behalf of WSSCA at another association's conference event - 15 points per session

  • Develop a Professional Development/Training Session (could be a WSSCA sponsored event or

       on behalf of WSSCA at another association’s conference/event) - 15 points

  • Write an Article for the WSSCA Newsletter, Safety Connection or other approved publication - 15 points

  • Attend the WSSCA Annual Conference - 15 points

  • Serve as a WSSCA Annual Conference Sponsor - 15 points

  • Participated in silent auction (getting or providing donations) - 10 points

  • Attend a WSSCA professional development session (4 or more hours) - 10 points per session

  • Serve as a Sponsor for other WSSCA event- 10 points per event sponsored

  • Attend a WSSCA professional development session (1 to 3.5 hours) - 5 points per session

  • Serve as a Volunteer at the Annual Conference - 5 points

  • Submit a Model Plan, Best Practice, Etc. for inclusion in the WSSCA Resource Library - 5 points for each submittal


The Member Participation Award Program consists of three levels of recognition - Gold, Silver and Certificate. The point thresholds and award for the three levels are as follows:

  • Gold Level - 130 points ($40 WSSCA apparel credit)

  • Silver Level - 90 to 129 points ($25 WSSCA apparel credit)

  • Certificate Level - 70 to 89 points (Certificate)


WSSCA has reserved special recognition for these exceptional men and women. It is the highest award we present, and the name itself speaks volumes to the level of accomplishment and respect the recipient has earned over the course of his/her outstanding career.  


We simply call it the Lifetime Achievement Award.

As you read each name below, consider that thousands of WSSCA members over the past four decades who have been eligible. Maybe then you will understand the impact these individuals have had on this organization, the school safety discipline, and the students and schools we serve.

WSSCA is one of the oldest school safety organizations in the entire United States of America – and this is our Hall of Fame. We proudly present the recipients of the WSSCA Lifetime Achievement Award. 

All WSSCA Board Members and Advisors will vote during the nomination review process - In the unlikely event of a tie, the WSSCA Executive Director will break the tie.




2023: Al Behnke

Howard-Suamico School District

2022: Edward Dorff

Former WSSCA Executive Director

2019: Mike Hinske

Big Foot Union High School 

2016: Peter Pochowski

Former WSSCA Executive Director


2014: Joel Konze

Sparta Area School District  

2013: Gary Rosploch

Muskego-Norway School District 

2011: Robert Severson

Chippewa Falls Area School District 

2010: Bryan Roessler

former WSSCA Executive Director 

2008: Doug  Reynolds

Beloit School District

2003: Richard "Dick" Klawiter

University of Wisconsin-Platteville 


The Wisconsin School Safety Coordinator’s Board of Directors recognizes that there are individuals that have provided special and noteworthy support and contributions as we pursue the fulfillment of our mission.


WSSCA’s Mission is to improve security, safety, and health in Wisconsin's schools. We are committed to making schools a safer place to learn, play, teach, work and to visit.

The following criteria are examples of areas that will be considered when reviewing nominees:


  • Have provided significant support in the implementation of WSSCA functions

  • Positive contributions to school safety at a local, regional, state, or national level

  • Years of support to WSSCA

There are no restrictions on who can nominate someone to receive this award.


Nominee’s (the person being nominated for the award) must be a current or past WSSCA member, WSSCA Board Member or Advisor, WSSCA Executive Director, or WSSCA Assistant Executive Director.

All WSSCA Board Members and Advisors will vote during the nomination review process - In the unlikely event of a tie, the WSSCA Executive Director will break the tie.

Friend of WSSCA Nomination Form

Friend of WSSCA Award Recipients

2022: Barbara Dorff

2016: Issy Pochowski

2015: Steve Fernan, DPI

2010: Bryan Roessler

former WSSCA Executive Director 

2007: Mary Jean Erschen, Executive Director, Center for School, Youth & Citizen Preparedness


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