Tuesday 27, 2011
            MARQUETTE, Mich.—Five Northern Michigan University alumni will be recognized for their achievements as part of Homecoming 2011 activities this weekend. The recipients are: Beverly Solomon of Oakland, Mich., Alumni Achievement Award; L. Garnet Lewis of Freeland, Mich., Alumni Service Award; Kyle Ortiz of New York, N.Y., and Stacy Welling of Marquette, Outstanding Young Alumni Awards; and Brian Majewski of Manassas, Va., Distinguished Alumni Award.

            Solomon graduated from NMU in 1974. Her social work career has spanned more than 35 years in school and clinical settings, including hospital/medical, psychiatric, substance abuse, oncology and gerontology. She recently received the Macomb County School Social Worker of the Year Award and                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                been a field instructor for Wayne State University for 23 years. Solomon is highly trained in suicide assessments of children, adolescents and adults.

            Lewis is director of the Joint Legislative Campaign, based in Lansing, which recruits and trains Democratic candidates to run for the Michigan Legislature. She was appointed to the NMU Board of Trustees in 2009. Lewis previously served on the NMU Foundation Board and as president of the NMU Alumni Association. She has hosted a number of university functions, both alumni-related and legislative, in her area. She also established the Lewis Endowed Scholarship to assist students who major in environmental studies. Lewis graduated in 1986.

Ortiz is an attorney with Weil, Gotshal & Manges and dedicated to public service. He has taught basic law and human rights to high school students from inner-city Chicago with Street Law, taught English as a Second Language through Oakton Community College and worked with Kids in Danger and the Parkinson Association of Illinois. During a year-long leave doing public service in China and Cambodia, Ortiz worked with Operation ASHA, the largest non-government provider of tuberculosis treatments in India. He helped to establish three TB treatment centers in Phnom Penh, with the goal of starting 12 more by the end of this year. A 2004 NMU graduate, Ortiz was president of the student government association.

            Welling is the first woman appointed U.P. regional director for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. She previously served as Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s northern Michigan representative and deputy chief of staff for U.S. Congressman Bart Stupak. Welling earned a bachelor’s degree from NMU in 2000 and a master’s degree in 2002. As an undergraduate, she was a cheerleader and worked in the student call center for the NMU Development Fund. Welling has maintained ties to Northern by acting as a mentor in the Student Leader Fellowship Program.

            Majewski, a 1976 graduate, is executive director of the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs for the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C. He is responsible for supporting the foreign policy initiatives of the president and secretary of state. Majewski oversees all aspects of management for the 50 U.S. embassies and consulates in Latin America, the Caribbean and Canada. His leadership and management skills were tested after the Haiti earthquake as he juggled three operations at once: staffing the State Department’s Haiti task force; supporting the U.S. embassy in Port-au-Prince; and setting up a logistics hub in Santo Domingo. Majewski is a commissioned career officer in the Senior Foreign Service, with the rank of counselor.

The recipients will be honored at the NMU alumni awards and scholarship brunch on Saturday, Oct. 1.

Kristi Evans
News Director