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Local poet visits campus

An award winning poet returned to his native roots to give a poetry reading last week, bringing in a full audience to the Darrell W. Krueger Library on campus.

Poet Mark Wunderlich read from his book, The Earth Avails and new material. He is originally from Winona and grew up in Fountain City. He is visiting from Hudson Valley, where he teaches literature at Bennington College in Vermont.

The poetry reading was on the second floor, in front of the tall glass windows. Eight rows of mismatched chairs filled the space. A majority of the chairs were occupied by people of a variety of ages, college students to older people. Wunderlich stood in front of a podium, book opened in front of him. His shoulder length, gray hair was pushed behind his ears by his orange and black glasses. Contrasting the orange was his blue polka dot shirt covered by a black button up.

Freshman Shanya Julius was in the audience, and came to the event for her English class. She had read some of his poems in class.

Another freshman, Sydney Anderson was also in the audience, and likes poetry so she decided to come.

Wunderlich read a few of his poems for close to half an hour, and saved time for audience questions after. One poem he read was White Fur, about an experience in Fountain City as a child.

Some of the audience members might recognize where this poem takes place, Wunderlich said, and the rest of the country he has read this poem thinks of it as an exotic place.

Wunderlich read from the manuscript he is currently working on. He said they will be longer poems, and more meditative, different from his shorter poems he has written before.

“I didn’t set out to write a sad book, but I think this book will be kind of sad,” Wunderlich said. “Accumulation of loss but still trying to live your life.”

He read a poem about his experience with Jeffery Dahmer, and swears that everything in the poem is true. It is called My Night with Jeffery Dahmer. It is about a time out at the bar when Jeffery Dahmer knocked over his beer, and started a conversation with him. Wunderlich wasn’t interested in talking to him, but found himself speaking to him. He didn’t think anything of it until sometime later, when he saw his face on the news.

It was a chilling moment when he recognized him, Wunderlich said, after an audience member inquired about it during question time.

Julius and Anderson, the attending freshman, both enjoyed the poem.

“The way he read the poem made it stand out,” Anderson said.

Wunderlich signs audience member’s books after the poetry reading.

After the poetry reading, Wunderlich went over to Blue Heron with advanced creative writing students to read two poems to open their poetry reading session. He also spent time with their classes that day and the day before.

Wunderlich’s visit was part of the Great River Reading Series, where two poets and two fiction or nonfiction writers are invited to campus to visit classes and read from their works, according to Professor Jim Armstrong.

Wunderlich visited Armstrong’s writing classes and also professors Deb Cumberland’s and Elizabeth Oness’ creative writing classes.

“They loved him…they wanted selfies with him…they couldn’t believe he wasn’t an old, crabby man they said,” Armstrong said about his students meeting Wunderlich.

Wunderlich started writing in college, when he accidently ended up in a creative writing class but decided to stay.

“On the first day we read a poem by Wallace Stevens and thought this is all I ever want to do,” he said. “I was having a conversation that I had waited my whole life to have…I remember this palpable excitement. I just thought I want to keep doing this.”

He said he writes in his 300 hundred year old house in his office, which has a 14 foot ceiling. One wall is entirely bookshelves. He has a ladder to access them all. A long, skinny desk sits near the bookshelves, and Wunderlich sits with the books behind him.

“This feels to me like the best arrangement, I am facing toward nothingness, the empty page, while behind me are all the books of poems, and all the writers I love,” he said. “There they are. They got my back.”

He loves many authors, but mentioned Emily Dickinson and Walt Wittman. He also loves his peer writers.

In addition to poetry, Wunderlich also writes nonfiction, essays, book reviews and criticism. He currently has three books out, available for purchase through Amazon. He currently is working on a fourth.


Lion’s Den Boxing Competition

Fighting out of the bluffs of Winona, two young boxing prospects traveled to St. Paul on February 25 to display their skills in the boxing ring. Marvin Labre, fighting in the 147-pound bracket, and Justus Pomeroy, fighting at 155, gave their best efforts but ultimately fell short of getting the win at the “Brawl in St. Paul.”

Lion’s Den Boxing is an amateur gym located above Team Howell Fitness on the west end of Winona. It is also the training ground for Justus Pomeroy, a Golden Gloves fighter who has been boxing since he was 12 years old. He has had a series of victories in his career, coached by his grandfather Bill Pomeroy and assistant coach Kendrick Carter.

In 2015, Pomeroy beat U.S. Air Force Boxing Team member Tavarus Roberts, winning the Light Welterweight division in the Upper Midwest Golden Gloves Tournament. Now, at 22 years old, Justus says he looks to establish a good year for himself by keeping a constant presence in the ring.

“Hopefully, we make it to that,” Pomeroy said, referencing the three-part Upper Midwest tournament that the “Brawl in St. Paul” is widely seen as a tune-up fight in comparison.

Coach Carter was looking past this fight to a larger picture, saying, “Hopefully, we get some more national tournaments for Justus, and try to prep him for the bigger stage.”

Labre, a human resources worker at Winona Health, boxed years ago during his college days in La Crosse. Now 24 years old, the “Brawl in St. Paul” marked his return to the competitive amateur boxing scene.

“This is Marvin’s first time back being in the ring for a little while, so it’s just about getting his feet wet again,” Carter said. “Getting in there, and roughing up the guy, not too much brawling, because he’s a technician, so I really want him to fight smart, use his jab, use the                       angles that we’ve been working on, and just stay busy in there.”

The team was set on bringing home two victories, and the game plan stuck to solid ground practiced in the gym.

Marvin was the third of 11 fights scheduled in the day’s tournament. “Fighting Chance Boxing Club,” in North Minneapolis, Minnesota, trained his opponent, Morgan McDonald.

The first round bell rang, and Labre moved in to set up a jab and establish his range. McDonald, being the shorter fighter, ducked underneath the jabs before delivering an overhand right which connected on target. From this point, the two closed into extreme close range, and Labre retaliated with a body shot combination that got his opponent to move back. Labre threw more jabs and a solid body shot to corner his adversary, causing McDonald to move in for the clinch. The referee reset the fight, breaking it up and moving the two toward opposite corners. After some brief maneuvering around the ring, Labre made a big swing that MacDonald ducked. This was followed by another retreat and clinch, which was again broken up. Macdonald stood his ground as Labre zeroed in on him, and the two exchanged a flurry of punches up until the bell signaled the end of the first round. The fighting got fiercer as the match went on, with Labre being more the aggressor and Macdonald working to dodge or counter. By the closing seconds of the third round, wild punches were thrown at very close range, as each tried to rack up the points by the end of the round. The fight ended with the two embracing in a hug of mutual sportsmanship.

Labre did not get the win. However, he said, “It’s a good learning experience, and something I want to try to work more on. I kept throwing more jabs, instead of mixing up my combinations. During sparring, I felt comfortable throwing hooks but I didn’t throw any during that time.”

Pomeroy was the second to last fight of the tournament, against Wayne Luckett from the “Believers Boxing Club” in Forest Lake, Minnesota. The fight began with both combatants moving in with straight lefts, in an attempt to gain better positioning over the other. After a brief hold by Luckett, the fighters continued to circle each other, picking apart the opponent’s defensive posture with feints and punches from multiple directions. Justus kept up the pace, moving Luckett back and landing a four-punch combination at the halfway point in the round. Luckett attempted to regain the initiative, but Justus dodged a flurry of his strikes as the crowd reacted to the quick action playing out in front of them. The bell rang while Justus had his head clenched under Luckett’s arm.

Later rounds saw the fight escalate in both tenacity and speed. Justus used lateral movement to set up angles he could exploit, creating openings that allowed him to strike without committing to a fight in close quarters. Ultimately, the judges gave the fight to his opponent.

Justus, however, was not discouraged. He acknowledged that next time he needs to “Throw more combos, keep my weight down, and more in and out work, less banging.”

        Both fighters have continued to train, ready to hone their skills and improve their technique in time for the next fight.

Academy Awards Shift Toward Diversity

The 89th Academy Awards, which took place on Feb. 27, 2017, were one of the most diverse in history. Breaking multiple records, including the amount of black Oscar winners and the first Muslim actor win, the show is being hailed as a huge step forward for Hollywood diversity.

“Compared to last year, it’s such a huge change. I think going forward, it’s going to open the doors to something more positive,” Bekah Bailey said.

Bekah Bailey is a theater student at Winona State University and an avid activist for the rights of the disenfranchised. She is a part of the WSU Student Senate, Full Spectrum, FORGE and the KEAP council, and is involved in the majority of campus events regarding diversity.

Though it is too early to call it a trend, Bailey said, society is shifting in favor of the marginalized.

“More so than ever, there are people and groups that are vocal about it not being fair and equal necessarily,” Bailey said. “Even though there is a lot of room for improvement, obviously, I think slowly but surely we’re seeing some sort of change.”

One of the more recent and visible movements was the #OscarsSoWhite campaign from several years ago, which focused on showcasing the disproportionate amount of white nominees and winners at the Academy Awards.

This year’s Academy Awards featured the most black winners in the show’s history and multiple other firsts.

Mahershala Ali poses with his award after the 89th Academy Awards. He was the first Muslim actor to win an Oscars. (ABC/Tyler Golden)

The best picture winner, “Moonlight,” was a story about a young gay African American male and his search for understanding. It is the first LGBT film to ever receive the top honors.


J. Paul Johnson, a professor of film studies at Winona State, said while the film’s win is a significant moment for the Oscars, this is not the first time a shift has seemingly occurred.

“We might, of course, celebrate the fact that a film, an artistic, aesthetically significant film could examine a young black male’s search for definition of his own masculinity and sexuality,” Johnson said. “On the other hand, there have been other moments in history where people may have thought we were on the cusp of a watershed moment.”

Bailey said diversity issues stem from two main sections: The lack of drive from those not affected, and lack of accessibility.

Shifting an industry takes unilateral effort, Bailey said, and that change won’t occur without having everyone involve. It also involves bringing new artists to the forefront, but for many artists those opportunities either are nonexistent or overly difficult to achieve.

Accessibility for these creators is integral to the future of the industry, Bailey said. When an industry shows itself as unequal, some marginalized creators will see it as too difficult to enter and stop trying, she added.

Mary Jo Klinker, a professor of women’s and gender studies at Winona State, argued the inherent white male centricity of the industry leads to the continuation of diversity issues.

In any narrative art form, a large part of the writing stems from the artist’s life experiences. While there are always going to be outliers, the lack of diverse writers and creators leads to less diverse stories, Klinker said.

In a study titled “Inclusion or Invisibility? Comprehensive Annenberg Report on Diversity in Entertainment,” research at the University of Southern California found 21.8 percent of leading characters in films were of an underrepresented race. In terms of creators, it’s even smaller: Only 12.7 percent of film directors were underrepresented.

The gender disparity occurs en masse at the creation level. According to San Diego State’s Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film, women made up seven percent of all directors on the top 250 highest grossing films for 2016. In 2015, that proportion was at nine percent.

Fig. 1-3. Percentages of women in three fields. Figure 1 is based on data from the US Census. Figure 2 is based on the data of top 250 grossing films of 2016, including the positions of Director, Producer, Cinematographer, Writer and Editor. Figure 3 is based on the Academy Awards.

“Whose stories are told? Who gets to tell these stories?” Klinker said. We live in what feminist scholar and media critic Bell Hooks refers to as a ‘white supremacist capitalist patriarchy,’ when films are produced in this culture, it often reflects those values.”

Johnson said Hollywood’s problems with those values stem back to the beginning.

“The history of Hollywood is very much one of people of privilege and means creating depictions of others as lesser, as evil, as savage, as perverted, as sissies, etc,” Johnson said. “They are, at the same time, reflections of broader cultural thinkings and assumptions about those groups as well.”

Films are products of their time and culture in most cases, Johnson said, which is why diversity problems often come to the forefront. Even in the early days of cinema, when directors like D.W. Griffith were making major advancements to the medium, virulent racism was a common occurrence.

“It should be no surprise when films do represent and exhibit traits of their cultures including both positive and negative ones like inherent racism and prejudice,” Johnson said.

This, Klinker said, leads to the oft-cited “white savior” trope, involving a white character who arrives to save a marginalized people. Released last week, “Marvel’s Iron Fist” was criticized for that exact trope, with a white main character who becomes the guardian and hero of a Himalayan monastery.

In regards to casting choices, Bailey said, the most important aspect to consider is the theme of the film itself.

As a theater major, Bailey has worked on multiple shows during her time at Winona State University. According to her, plays are often easier for casting due to their universal nature. There are exceptions, like the black-oriented story of “Fences,” but for the most part these stories can be shifted to accommodate different races. As long as the casting doesn’t take away from any other group of people, then the question of justifiability can be ignored, she said.

Movies, Bailey said, are a bit more complicated.

“A movie is so often going to be specifically about a direct atmosphere in regards to who the plot is about,” she said. “More often than not movies aren’t universal so it is important to pay attention to who you’re casting.”

“Ghost in the Shell” is a recent film that has met with intense backlash. Starring Scarlett Johansson, the film is an American adaptation of the 1995 animated film by Mamoru Oshii. The original film and subsequent TV series were set in a futuristic cyberpunk version of Japan involves a counter-cyberterrorism group led by Major Motoko Kusanagi.

Johansson plays Major in the new adaptation, which has resulted in backlash on social media. Many protesters argue casting a white actor in a role that was originally Japanese ruins the themes of the original story, and while there hasn’t been as much backlash in Japan, Klinker said it is an indicator of a larger problem.

“A media term that is helpful for understanding this issue is “symbolic annihilation,” which is a way of upholding social inequality by misrepresenting or erasing a group of people in the media,” Klinker said.

Symbolic annihilation weaves its way into filmmaking in a number of forms, Klinker said. Whitewashing is the most predominant, where a white actor or actress is cast in a minority role. “Doctor Strange” and “Marvel’s Iron Fist” both were met with harsh criticism in this regard, placing white actors into roles that were either originally Asian or based on Asian culture.

Danny Rand (Finn Jones) in “Marvel’s Iron Fist” has received backlash for its use of cultural appropriation. (Netflix)

Some other forms include “crip drag,” which involves placing an able-bodied actor into disabled roles, and ciswashing, or having cisgender – those who identify as their original gender – actors play transgender roles.

“For this reason, I think it’s important to hear what marginalized communities have to say about this casting and the way it impacts access to see themselves in cultural productions and media, which dictates a large portion of our social views,” Klinker said.

A few of the more problematic depictions Bailey described included the angry black woman, unstable relationships between persons of color and disabled character used as plot devices for the main character’s progression.

Money has always been a driving aspect of the film industry, which leads to occasionally problematic casting and narratives.

“Films are simultaneously aesthetic and economic ventures, and filmmakers need to take into consideration the box office draw of their actors in the films as they create and pitch in order to secure funding for their films,” Johnson said.

Bailey said while money is something to take into account, studios should begin to take risks on unproven actors of color. According to Bailey, letting those actors grow in their art will lead to more diverse plots and films overall.

Klinker made a similar point, suggesting the industry must change to accommodate more people and more sources for stories. By allowing people with diverse experiences to get into the industry, more of those narratives will be told.

“It is financially prohibitive for most people to tell their stories, which ensures further symbolic annihilation. The success of “Hidden Figures” made clear that audiences want to hear these stories,” Klinker said.

“Hidden Figures” tells the story of three African-American women mathematicians who helped NASA get astronauts into space in the early days of the United States space program. The film was both a commercial and critical success, with a box office gross of over $206.1 million.

Both “Hidden Figures” and “Moonlight” performed well during the awards circuit, culminating in a best picture win for the latter.

Jeremy Kleiner, Adele Romanski, and Barry Jenkins, the producer of “Moonlight”, pose with their award. “Moonlight” took home Best picture, a first for an LGBT film. (ABC/Tyler Golden)

While it failed to win awards at last month’s show, “Hidden Figures” had one of the more prominent and important sections of the broadcast. The cast of the film brought out one of the mathematicians the film was based on, to rousing applause.

“This was a year of many firsts for the Oscars; however, a number of representations are still erased. Few films with Asian American and Latino casts were nominated.,” Klinker said. “The Black/White binary of racial representations in Hollywood further impacts racial erasure in media.“

Bailey also discussed the black/white binary in the film industry, but added that the focus is justified to a degree.

“Right now, in regards to paying attention to marginalized people, a lot of our attention is appropriately on black people,” Bailey said. “‘Moonlight’ was something that had to win in order for us to continue thinking of other groups when we think of marginalized groups.”
Though the Oscars were a high point for many diversity movements, Klinker said it is not to be taken as a trend quite yet. According to Klinker, the government itself will have an impact on film diversity.

“Current US budget proposals put art last in priorities,” Klinker said, “This will impact who can be an artist, who has access to art, and thereby impact film culture too.”

Johnson echoed this sentiment, adding that no single moment is enough to show full progress. Progress takes time, he said.

“Let’s hope that’s the case, that these successes make Hollywood executives realize that there is probably a wider prospect for marketability in films like these than they might have previously thought,” Johnson said. “But like I said, we’ll just have to wait and see.”

Long-term professors share WSU history, campus changes

By Michaela Gaffe and Sara Tiradossi

Winona State University has a long history, and there are professors currently on campus who can tell that history since they have taught at the university for many years.

According to Assistant Director of Human Resources Sandra Reed, the average length a professor will stay on campus is 12.2 years. The longest employed professor in history was Joseph Foegen, professor of business administration and management, who worked at Winona State from 1958 to 2009, and the current professor who has been at the university the longest is Marvin Wolfmeyer, professor of economics, who has taught since 1969.

Winona State was the first established normal school west of the Mississippi, founded in 1858. Since then, it has evolved into a nationally recognized university, with a mission “to enhance the intellectual, social, cultural and economic vitality of the people and communities we serve,” according to the university’s statement.

The joy of learning and sharing that knowledge with students brought Mark Young, professor of marketing, to Winona State, who decided to stay because he enjoys the campus, and thinks the community is a good place to work and live.

Professor Mark Young sits his office in Somsen Hall.
Professor Mark Young in The Winonan in 1998 for the article “What do you think about rules that have banned smoking indoors?”

Young has worked at the university since 1980, starting when he was just 23 years old.

He recalled the time when the marketing department was on the third floor of Somsen Hall, with no air conditioning.

“We would have the windows open on a hot day, and a bee would fly in,” Young said. “Students would scramble.”

Since then, marketing has been moved to the first floor of Somsen. In addition to this change, Young remembers parking on the campus when there had been streets through campus instead of sidewalks. It was more of a downtown atmosphere, Young said.

“Physically the campus has changed a great deal, the buildings have been very significant,” Young said. “The library, the science engineering building and the wellness center, have shaped wheat we think of the campus and how we interact with the students and the campus.”

With a great facilities crew the grounds have improved, Young said, with the addition of trees and plants, and in his opinion, Winona State became one of the prettiest campuses in the country.

Besides the physical facilities changing, the technology has also changed, according to Young. Campus has gone from having a couple of computer lab rooms, and using punch cards for running computer programs, to now having laptops, iPads, phones; and technology has transformed how students learn, Young said.

With the evolution of technology, classrooms have become more interactive and less traditional-lecture style, Young said. For instance, the marketing classrooms no longer have desks that stare at the professor, but round tables.

“We now have a much diversified, very high quality faculty,” Young said. “We have a higher level quality of faculty that has more emphasis on staying current, active and engaged with students and with their disciplines.”

Community interaction has also changed since Young began at Winona State.

“When I first came, it seemed like the community thought of us as a sort of ivory tower,” Young said. “There was a lot of negative press with the student conduct back and forth downtown; and in those early years, there was talk about closing the university down.”

In 1982, Young did an economic study, on the impact of Winona State on the economy. Back then, it was a 59 million dollar impact, and once that was recognized, it reshaped the relationship between the community and the school.

The study showed how tied the university and the community are, and Young said relationship is not only economical but it also involves theatre, art and athletics. He sees that especially in the college of business, and its relationship with local businesses. An example of this would be the Wincraft Super Bowl Day, which exposed students to what the company has to offer. Fastenal Day is also approaching, which will bus students over to have tours, Young said.

“Almost every area has seen extremely positive changes,” Young said. “The environment is what you make it, but it provides opportunity to what you need to do.”

Young has had numerous opportunities to leave, but has not found anywhere he would prefer over Winona State.

“I am here because of choice. I think you would find that across the college, long tenure faculty. Once they come they enjoy it and stay,” he said.

Young finds motivation in helping students realize what their goals, dreams and ambitions are. He enjoys providing the encouragement, knowledge or reference to start them on the right track.

“After years of doing that, you start seeing some of that payback and their success. A lot of my students now are in the peak of their careers in upper level management positions, and impacting different companies,” he said. “There is that kind of intrinsic motivation of helping others but also what you get back as a faculty.”

Similarly to Young, John Vivian has been connected to Winona State for almost three decades. When Vivian first arrived at the university in 1982, there was not a journalism department, but there were journalism classes in the English department starting in 1966. He was the first chair of the mass communication department, which started in early 1980s by pulling courses from English and speech and borrowing faculty.

Professor John Vivian sits in his office working on class preparation in Phelps 113C.
Professor John Vivian in The Winonan in 1981 for the article “New mass comm department employs Vivian as chairperson.”

The university has seen some notable changes under various leadership, and some of them have been extraordinary, according to Vivian.

When he first started teaching, the first president who changed campus during his time was Tom Stark, Vivian said. The university faculty had run the previous president out of town and the administration was dealing with a new union, which caused a lot of tension. Tom Stark was chosen as president in 1983, and he had one goal: to make peace.

Vivian said Stark was good at that; he was a former superintendent. He was a horrible university president, though, who was smiley, a backslapper, and made people feel good, Vivian said.

Stark died in office of a heart attack while still fairly young. He achieved his goal and made the university more peaceable and faculty learned how to act together, Vivian said.

The next university president was Darrell Krueger, who was president for 14 years from 1989 to 2005. Krueger had a great sense of democracy and free expression, according to Vivian, and he let the university govern itself.

Krueger is the one who gave the university the motto, which has changed over the years to what it is now, “A Community of Learners Improving Our World.”

 He fell asleep often, Vivian said. He fell asleep when Governor Jesse Ventura was on campus giving a speech and a photographer for the Winonan took a photo of him.

“He had some problems, perhaps narcolepsy. There was a story about him falling asleep while driving his car on Huff and Sarnia, and somebody had honked to wake him. Maybe he worked long hours and was tired,” Vivian said.

Krueger was good for the university, and Stark got the place settled down. The president after Krueger was Judith Ramaley, who was terrible, Vivian said. She arrived after being fired from the University of New Hampshire, because she cancelled the hockey season after the hockey coach lied to her about something, Vivian said, and they asked her to resign and she did.

“She was such an unpleasant human,” Vivian said. “She wanted to establish an academic stamp on the university, to make it more intellectually respectable. That is an insult to the community, we’ve always had some fine scholars here.”

Ramaley hated the press, she was a control freak, and she was snarley,Vivian said. She would go to conferences, as presidents do, and hired a limo to bring her to the airport at the university’s expense. Now there is a rule stating one cannot rent a limo using the university’s money, Vivian said.

The current president is Scott Olson who took over for Ramaley after she retired in 2012.

Vivian has a lot of respect for Olson because his stamp isn’t all over the place. Vivian said he listens, watches, and deals with crisis situations well. He puts his students first, and there is no covering up problems. If there is a problem, it is addressed; and he knows this well because he is a journalist, according to Vivian.

“The students focus on classes, but the quality of the university is very much a product of the leadership,” Vivian said.

Students keep Vivian motivated, and he enjoys keeping in touch with past students and seeing their achievements.

He never teaches a class the same way twice, because there is no perfect way. Vivian said some teaching styles work well with some students, and not well with others. Vivian’s teaching is fueled by his textbook writing, and one of his textbooks is going into its twelfth edition this month.

Before coming to Winona State, Vivian worked at the Associated Press and was tired of working odd shifts and hours.

One Thanksgiving evening he had friends over, and was confiding in them how unsure he was of continuing his current position at the AP. He then decided to pursue teaching. His first teaching role was at Marquette University, and he has not regretted teaching since. Vivian went to New Mexico State University to build a journalism program with a friend who was department chair. It never worked out, and he came to Winona State.

“Winona State is a high quality institution for its size and considering its roots as a teachers’ college,” Vivian said.

Vivian plans to stay here for the rest of his career.

“They’ll have to carry me out,” he said.

During the same year, Winona State welcomed another mass communications professor.

Originally from India, Daniel worked for an international radio station in Ethiopia and became acquainted with broadcasting before coming to the U.S. At the time, the company was shutting down and he had the choice of staying in Africa or studying in the U.S. for higher education.

Ajit Daniel grades papers in his office, located in Somsen Hall.
In 1982, Ajit Daniel was photographed and interviewed in the Winonan for the article “KQAL to carry NPR?”

“I had always wanted to go to the U.S., even when I was a little boy. This was a good chance for me,” Daniel said.

In 1977, when he was 29, Daniel flew to the U.S. to start his college path at Southern Illinois University, where he stayed until 1981.

As an international student, he had to find a job right after graduation if he wanted to keep staying in the U.S. Daniel said when he was first applying for jobs, he was offered to teach at SIU for one year in the mass communication department.

Daniel said he was scared at first because he had never taught and thought he could not measure up to the other teachers. He was diffident but excited to have a possibility to stay in the country. When the other teachers showed their support and encouraged him to try to teach, Daniel decided to gratefully accept the offer.

After two semesters, Daniel said he had to start applying to other places because the position lasted one year only. He then applied to 47 universities and got six offers out of all the applications he had sent. The job offers were from universities in California, New York, South Dakota and other states, Daniel said.

“The one thing that made me want to come here is that Winona State gave me a chance to teach and manage a radio station also. That’s what attracted to me,” Daniel said.

In 1982, Daniel began his teaching journey at Winona State University and managed the KQAL radio station half the time and taught the other half in the department of mass communication. In 2008, Daniel switched to full time teaching.

When Daniel first started teaching at Winona State, the campus had a different appeal. Many structures were replaced and renovated. For instance, Daniel said there were tennis courts where the library is currently located and the library used to be in Maxwell Hall.

Daniel said the university population was 4,300 students in the 1980s, but the university knew there was a high need to grow. Because the university needed more space to fit more students, Daniel said, officials started buying more lands and homes and it expanded all the way to West campus, that used to be a residential college.

When technology was entering people’s lives, Daniel said he had to adapt his style of teaching consequently. Between 1991 and 1993, Daniel said, the departments became computer-oriented, which represented a big change from typewriters.

“It was hard. In those days, faculty did not know how to use the computers and had to learn everything from scratch,” Daniel said.

In 1992, Daniel bought his first desktop Macintosh, which sat in his house for eight months because he did not know how to use it. Little by little, he gained more knowledge on the use of computers and started applying the new resources in his classes.

“Once you start making mistakes, the rest is all history,” Daniel said.

Daniel is now a retiring professor who has taught general mass communication courses, from Mass Media theory to International broadcasting.

Not only did he adapt to technology changes, but he also had to mold himself with the times, as well as his thinking and perspectives. When it comes to teaching, Daniel said he has never compromised academic discipline through his career.

“Students should know when they come here that studying in a university is a privilege, not an entitlement,” Daniel said. “Every single student is important to me.”

Daniel said he tells students he believes in them and adopts a strict teaching style because to him, they do not represent students only, but they represent a piece of America’s future.

When students disagree at his thinking because their way of life is different than his, Daniel’s goal is always the same; bringing the students to a certain level of excellence. After 35 years of teaching, Daniel said students have kept him motivated to do his job.

“One day after students graduate, they will be part of this society. I can’t let them fail, because if I do so, I fail myself,” Daniel said. “I only want to be part of successes.”

Sometimes, Daniel said his position as a second language professor became challenging and he found himself in situations of disrespect from students and others.

When he was still a growing professor, he received complaints from two students who were involved with the national broadcasting society and quickly became his ‘enemies,’ he said. They approached the Dean and explained the problems they had with Daniel’s behavior as the advisor of the society.

Daniel said he showed his paper records and all the proof he could to demonstrate they were wrong. Throughout the conversation, the Dean said there was a problem of miscommunication and language barrier among them. Her response made Daniel feel disrespected, Daniel said, but he still maintained his position and said he had learned English as a second language, instead of simply picking it up, so she was not qualified to correct him.

“Abuse can knock you over but if you have confidence in yourself, you will make it through,” Daniel said.

Daniel said teaching can have its ups and downs, but it is also creative and it requires taking a big responsibility. Many times, students write back to him after they graduate and thank him.

“That’s my reward. If the students are honest with themselves, they will appreciate what I do,” Daniel said.

The professors all came with different motivations, backgrounds and experiences, but they all have similar reasons for staying at Winona State. Over the years, the university has gone through major changes, and professors like Young, Vivian and Daniel had to shape their teaching and methodologies to meet new demands. As they are retiring soon, new faculty will take their place and continue to shape the university.


Warrior Career Expo

by Kilat Fitzgerald

The transition from a hard-earned education to stable source of income can be a daunting task for students. For the purpose of networking, ice breaking, and resume’ passing, the Career services department arranged for 55 companies to attend the career fair in the East Hall of the Kryzsko Commons.

“My goal is for students to find internships and full-time positions,” Associate Director Deanna Goddard said. “The hope is that they get to network with employers.”

There were 240 students that turned out to meet the company representatives, with some job searchers utilizing the event to its full potential.

Fastenal, one of the companies visiting Winona State, had representatives from several departments scouting for fresh talent. In the crowded hustle of hungry students with bundles of applications, recruitment could depend heavily on first impressions.

Corey Grebin, a Fastenal IT manager and web development specialist, was enticing two students pursuing degrees in management information systems, or MIS.

“If we can get our name in front of them five, six, seven times before they graduate, it’s going to help with recruiting,” Grebin said. “I know some of the MIS professor require students to come down and interview two or three companies, and that’s awesome for us.”

Other students manage to take their own initiative. Dakota Smith, a junior who currently works in Winona State’s IT department, was clearly interested in what he heard from Grebin about Fastenal.

“I’ll have to keep my eye out for Fastenal Day,” Smith said. He then discussed the specifics of troubleshooting with Fastenal’s web specialist, and how it applies to the job they are hiring for.

The organizations were set up in long rows of tables within a few feet of each other, with retail, insurance, and software companies presented in a fair booth fashion. There was also a photobooth and a Linkedin service where applications could be fine tuned and profiles could be professionalized. Focusing the students’ skills to the right profession was made easier by the listing of job titles next to the respective company.

Another company, Buckle, an American fashion retailer, had a booth that was busy in its efforts to reach out to students with marketing and management skills.

“You get to run the whole business the way you want to,” Buckle representative Lacy Koss said. “It’s a business run source, not a franchise. So we make money off of what we sell. You get a salary, you make commision, it’s nice.”

Goddard said the Warrior Success Center plans to make more sessions like this available for the student body. The Summer Opportunities Fair will be held Feb. 16, from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the East Hall of Kryzsko. The Minnesota Education Job fair will be held at the Minneapolis Convention Center on April 21.

Last year was the last time a university consortium called the Minnesota Job and Internship Fair was held in the Twin Cities. Due to high cost and low turnout, faculty in charge of the coordinated effort decided not to hold one in the following year.

The construction in Winona State’s gymnasium prevented the space from being utilized for the fall career expo, limiting attendance to 45 organizations in the smaller East Hall. Goddard, however, decided that students  should not miss out on the opportunities of other potential employers, and launched Winona State’s first spring career expo.

The next phase was interview day, the schedule of which was posted on Warrior Jobs for the month leading up to the event. Some employers also had schedules for interviews that could be filled at the day of the job fair.

“I would say the majority of students on campus have a company or two that is seeking them out,” Goddard said.

A wide variety of companies voicing their needs was met by a wave of undergrads conveying their abilities.


Pancake Luncheon Fundraiser

All the class wanted to do was raise $700.

That was their goal, to help put on a charity event for Love Your Melon, giving people an opportunity to learn.

Five students in event marketing, a class at Winona State, had a semester-long project that shows students what it takes to put on an event for charity.

The group didn’t make $700. Instead, they raised around $2,000, with the class not taking any of the money.

The class and Love Your Melon hosted a pancake luncheon at the Eagles Club in Winona, where anyone could come.

Winona area community members could enjoy all-you-can-eat pancakes, and getting a serving of eggs and sausage, for $8 for adults and $4 for children.

Marlene Werden said the tickets were given to her at a car show, but said she would’ve come anyway to support her alma mater.

Werden, a graduate of WSU’s nursing program in 1999 with her son Matt, came to the event unaware of what Love Your Melon is.

“I think it’s a very good cause,” Werden said after talking to representatives of Love Your Melon at the event.

Robert Jarvis, a member of the class said trying to tell their key demographic, senior citizens, what this charity is was their biggest challenge.

“I will say, the hardest thing was the older generation,” Jarvis said. “It’s unbelievable how many people think its breast cancer awareness or something along those lines.”

Jarvis, a senior at WSU, said the luncheon wasn’t their first idea. In fact, they started with an event similar to the Olympic games, where parents and children could compete for prizes.

After their first idea fell through, the students tried to create an event similar to bingo. Jarvis said they couldn’t get around the gambling laws in Minnesota and felt a pancake luncheon would suffice.

Jarvis emphasized the class and Love Your Melon were not affiliated in any way prior to this event and said the group has been great to work alongside.

With the class handling the process of setting up the charity event, Abigail Greislinger, the crew captain of the Winona area Love Your Melon group, focused on trying to spread the word about their company.

Love Your Melon is associated with 740 college campus’ in the Campus Crew Program. As a crew captain, Greislinger said she has the most responsibility of the group.

“As a captain, I am in charge of planning and overseeing donation events, household visits, superhero adventures, running crew meeting biweekly, and managing all crew members,” Greislinger said.

One of the members of the class, Jethro Roemer, reached out to Greislinger about the possibility of setting up a fundraiser for Love Your Melon and they jumped at the opportunity.

Greislinger said the group can’t accept “direct donations,” but rather all of the money from the luncheon will go to their partnering organizations Pinky Swear Foundation and CureSearch.

Like Werden, Greislinger had no idea what Love Your Melon was, until she received one of their hats as a Christmas present.

“I first heard about LYM (Love Your Melon) halfway through my freshman year, when I received a LYM hat for Christmas from my mom,” Greislinger said. “She told me what it was and a bit of background information and I immediately went online to find out more. After reading the story, I was so inspired.”

To add to the success, between the class and Love Your Melon, they had everything for the breakfast was donated.

“We’ve been super lucky that everything has been donated by a bunch of people in the community,” Jarvis said. “Places like Midtown (Foods) donated a $50 gift card. The Pet Center donated a $50 check for food. KwikTrip donated a lot of eggs. My parents have donated and Jenna’s parents have donated. We have not spent a dime.”

Even the venue was donated for free Jarvis said and felt the location was “perfect” because he had previous experience going to the Eagles club events.

“My family is a part of the Eagles back home and they ran a lot of charity events all ready,” Jarvis said. “They had a demographic that we wanted to target and the set up.”

At the luncheon, the Love Your Melon group also had a silent auction, where people could bid on items that were donated from surrounding businesses like Elmaro Vineyard and Winona 7.

Werden said she walked around, after eating, writing her name on many bidslips of items, as a way to get other people to begin the bidding process.

Jarvis said the original totals for people coming were at 70 for advanced tickets, but estimated they had around “220 or 230 people”. Jarvis said he could not specify since the ticket stubs were thrown away, so finding an accurate total of people was difficult for the class.

Where they received the most money was in ticket sales around $1,130. The silent auction raised around $670 and they also received “a couple hundred” in donations.

Werden herself is involved with numerous charities, including the Catholic Daughters of Americas, and enjoyed learning about the charity and, more than anything, “loved the food.”

College Athletics: Pay-For-Play

In 2010, the NCAA signed a 14-year deal that totaled $10.8 billion dollars with CBS and Turner Broadcasting.

The NCAA reported in 2012 that 81 percent or $705 million out of the $871.6 million they took in that year was due to deals like the one they signed with CBS/Turner Broadcasting.

While Division-I is reaping the benefits of a $10.8 billion dollar deal, Winona State University isn’t able to meet the NCAA and NSIC standards for scholarships.

According to Winona State athletic director Eric Schoh, the school gives 59.10 scholarships to the women’s programs and 63.60 for the men’s programs, standards that were set by the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference.

During the 2014-2015 season, Winona State gave out 31.48 scholarships to the women’s programs and 38.39 to the men’s programs. This put Winona State in 9th place among the 16 teams in the NSIC.

Unlike Division-I, Schoh said when it comes to payment for scholarships, Division-II doesn’t give full-ride scholarships.

“We do have some in other sports, that get closer to a full-ride, but you’re $10,000 or $20,000 or whatever it is, that’s a pretty good payment,” Schoh said. “I have two sons in college and neither one is getting any money for the things that they’re doing.”

The most that Winona State can gives is between $1,000 and $20,000, a scholarship that can be renewed each year. Schoh said the school isn’t saving money by not spending to the NSIC’s limit.

“We’re spending what we have,” Schoh said. “If we had more, we’d give more.”

The tuition at Winona State is annually $17,167 for in state students and $22,864 for out of state students.

Schoh said no money that goes towards tuition is going to the sports budget.

“There’s no direct tuition dollars that generate a tutoring program or athletic program,” Schoh said. “Your tuition dollars come from the specific class that you’re taking. So I don’t know if Division II is ever going to be in a specific situation where we have that kind of dollars generated to where we can have that conversation.”

Schoh said the value of the education that a school like Winona State is giving, should be more than enough.

The University of Minnesota is considered to be a part of the “Power Five” conference, which includes: the Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12, SEC and ACC.

Comparing the University of Minnesota and Winona State’s athletic budgets is quite different, with the University of Minnesota athletics having an annual budget of $96 million and Winona State’s budget of $5 million.

Schoh said, “At our level, with our budget, we’re generating about, in corporate sponsorships and ticket sales, $400,000, less than 10 percent of what the budget is. There is no revenue.”

Schoh said “about half” of the $5 million dollar budget is going to salaries and benefits, an amount Schoh said is close to what other student-related services receive.

A survey was conducted at Winona State university for the 375 student-athletes, asking about Pay-For-Play. Of those student-athletes, 57 responded across 10 sports that Winona State offers.

Of those 57 survey participants there were 24 students who said they believe college athletes should be paid, while 27 students said they believed they should be paid for their participation in their athletics at Winona State.

The numbers change when asked if colleges’ should be able to sell a student-athlete’s likeness, for example, a jersey that has that student-athlete’s name on the back. 41 students said they should receive some compensation for selling their likeness.

Former UCLA men’s basketball player Ed O’Bannon sued the NCAA, Electronic Arts, and Collegiate Licensing Company after seeing his character in a video game where they had his name on the back of the jersey. O’Bannon felt the company owed him money, just like the students felt about selling their likeness.

O’Bannon, Electronic Arts, and The Collegiate Licensing Company settled the court case in Aug. 8, 2014 for $40 million dollars, with money going to O’Bannon and other college athletes that were also in the game.

For jobs during the school year, 25 student-athletes said they worked during the school year. One student said they worked 21-30 hours a week and no more than 31 hours per week. There were 15 student-athletes who said they worked 1-10 hours per week.

That number increased dramatically for student-athletes working during the summer, more than doubling with 53 students saying they work during the summer and 32 students working more than 31 hours per week.

Schoh said there is a big difference between Division-I and Division-II athletics, outside of the money. Schoh doesn’t want Division-II athletics to become a “minor league for professional sports.”

Schoh said based off his experiences, student-athletes should be grateful.

“I’m starting to get to be one of the old guys in Division-II in our league and I remember working for two years for free, just to get my foot in the door to get a job,” Schoh said. “I never felt like I was being exploited or taken advantage of.”

Overall, Schoh believes that Division-II and Division-III can offer student-athletes a more complete experience, rather than a pipedream of becoming professional.

“I think it’s definitely more likely in Division II and Division III that you’ll stay the full four, five years because you’re probably not at that talent level,” Schoh said. “I think the culture and expectation is people understand you’re here for your education first.”

Winona Chili Cookoff

On a cold day, Winona residents had the opportunity to sample 19 businesses’ chili recipes at the 22nd Annual Chili Cook-off at Winona Middle School.

Winona National Bank sponsored the event, with all profits being donated to the Winona local charity Ready, Set, School.

Ready, Set, School is a non-profit organization that gives families that can’t afford school related supplies the money to do so, in a form of a voucher.

According to the Ready, Set, School website, the company provided 1,159 vouchers to 105 students.

Jenny Baertsch, the Marketing Communications Officer and Secretary on the board of Ready, Set, School said the chili cook-off is the company’s largest event and the beginning of fundraising events this year.

“We use this as kind of the platform to get people excited again and ready to donate,” Baertsch said. “Throughout the rest of the year, up until the summer months when kids are shopping for school supplies, we do different partnerships with businesses in town where businesses will donate 10 percent of their sales to Ready, Set, School for the day.”

Among those businesses, according to Baertsch are: Bloedows, Lakeview Drive In, Godfather’s Pizza, and Green Mill.

The cook-off raised $5,086.69 dollars, with $2,976.69 coming in sales and $2,110.00 coming in donations. Baertsch said the event raised $4,629.80, hoping that they would be able to come close to last year’s results.

“Last year we raised about $4,000 dollars,” Baertsch said. “So if we can match that or raise more, I’ll be really happy about that.”

According to Baertsch, 35 percent of Winona County come from families that can’t afford school supplies with that money being able to support more families than last year.

The cook-off had 19 varieties of chili donated by: Bluff Country Co-op, Brewski’s Pub & Eatery, Bub’s Brewing Company, Chartwell’s at WSU, Ground Round, Jefferson’s Pub & Grill, Kwik Trip Store #746 Homer Road, Lewiston-Altura Intermediate School, North End Pub & Grill, Riverway Learning Community, Signatures Restaurant, Steak Shop Catering, Steak Shop Catering at Cotter Schools, Sugar Loaf Senior Living, Timbers Restaurant, Winona Area Public Schools, and Winona Health Catering.

At the event, the first major decision that needed to be made for Winona residents was to try spicy or mild.

One of the residents at the event was Jerry Zettler, who ate five out of the eight spicy chilis.

“I’m picking the Chartwells,” Zettler said. “Then it’s probably the North End. Overall, I like the texture and the taste.”

On the mild side was Miss Winona Brittany Moncrief, who donated her time by cleaning tables and helping serve people. Moncrief said the consistency of the chili was important to her.

“I like the Winona Health one,” Moncrief said. “There were some that were more (like liquid) than others, there were some that were thicker than others, and that one was just perfect.”

Another volunteer at the event was part-time Winona National Bank employee Bob Benedict, a first time volunteer, said he jumped at the chance to help at the cook-off.

“I enjoy this, doing stuff like this in the community,” Benedict said. “They said they needed volunteers and I said I’d love to help serve and talk to people.”

As far as chili goes, Benedict enjoys the spicier chili, but there was perspiration involved.

“I sampled three of them,” Benedict said. “My favorite probably is the one from Chartwells, it was thicker, meatier chili. I had a little bit of tears and sweat on my forehead when I was eating it.”

Winona National Bank has always sponsored the event itself since it’s beginning, Baertsch said, but began with a partnership with the Winona County D.A.R.E. program.

Baertsch said the Ready, Set, School has been sponsored by Winona National Bank as well since it’s beginning.

“We helped get the program up and running,” Baertsch said. “We’ve been a strong supporter of their mission and in the past, ten to 12 years, the chili cook-off has been benefiting Ready, Set, School.”

In the past, Baertsch said individual chili recipes could be submitted, that didn’t come from a business, but due to food licensing laws, they can’t be accepted anymore.

Residents were able to enjoy entertainment from the Winona Fiddlers and other local student groups.

For the event, a panel of judges was brought in to taste the different chili, deciding which one would win for the spicy and mild categories.

The judges chose Riverway Learning Community, Bluff Country Co-op, and Jefferson’s chili for the mild category and Sugar Loaf Senior Living, North End Pub & Grill, and Signatures for the spicy category.

The most coveted award, according to Baertsch is the Public Tasters’ Choice Award, where the public is able to vote on the best overall chili between mild and spicy.

As far as Baertsch’s taste buds go, she avoids anything too spicy.

“My favorite personally was from the mild category,” Baertsch said. “I’m a mild girl. I liked the chili submitted by Winona Area Public Schools.”

Vegan’s Delight

The Journal of American Medicine reported in a 2012 survey that 78.6 million adults in the United States are obese, about a third of the population.

With fast food and obesity on the rise, many diets have become popular over the years like tapeworm, Atkins and paleo.

For Katie Lambeth, these diets aren’t even on her radar. She’s a vegan. She’s been one for three years and was a vegetarian for three years before that.

If you ask Lambeth, being a vegan isn’t about dieting or trying to lose weight. It’s a lifestyle choice, a way to be healthy while also standing up for her beliefs.

Lambeth, 24, became a vegetarian during her freshman year at the University of Richmond. With her brother, Michael Lambeth, she watched the film “Food Inc.”, a documentary about the meat industry in the United States and the growing popularity of fast food chains.

“We did a bunch of research on the meat industry and we decided we really didn’t agree with what they were doing,” Lambeth said. “At that point, we decided that we are going to be done eating meat. As our New Year’s resolution, we stopped eating meat.”

That was in 2010. Lambeth joined an environmental activism group called Green You Are at college. The group wasn’t radical in Lambeth’s opinion, but rather watched documentaries and sponsored events informing people on the meat industry.

The switch from vegetarian to vegan wasn’t an easy decision Lambeth said, but a switch made more out of necessity for her own health.

During her junior year, Lambeth decided to go on a six-month study abroad trip to Kenya. She stayed in the cities of Nairobi and Kismu, but decided to take a trip to Mombasa where she got E.Coli.

“I was in the hospital for three days,” Lambeth said. “I got a whole bunch of drugs in my system that basically killed all of the bacteria in my body that could digest things.”

As a result of the medication and no access to dairy products, Lambeth said the enzymes in her body didn’t grow back, so eating dairy constantly made her ill. Lambeth began to cut out dairy products like milk, cheese and eggs.

Janet Macon, a professor at Winona State and a registered dietician for 12 years, agreed with Lambeth and said a switch to veganism isn’t about a diet, but rather a lifestyle change.

Macon said most people, she has noticed, that have become vegan have made a change from an omnivorous diet because they want to move away from saturated fats and other fatty foods. Aside from the dietary needs, vegans also look to make an ecological impact.

Jennifer Holden, a registered dietician at HyVee in Winona for the past two years, said she can assist people looking to become a vegetarian or vegan.

“If they were looking to make a change to a vegetarian or vegan that’s a huge step,” Holden said. “That’s why it’s good to have a registered dietitian to help them so they don’t miss out on any key nutrients.”

Holden said the biggest nutrients people could miss, if they switched to a vegan diet, would be amino acids and B12 nutrients.

Holden said she recommends quinoa or edamame to help with those nutrients.

Lambeth said she is aware of nutrients that could potentially be lost, but it only takes a B12 supplement to replace the nutrients. Those that don’t want to take a pill, can eat nutritional yeast instead.

Holden said she thinks people in the Winona community are aware of what they’re putting into their body, with most people coming to her by choice, rather than a recommendation by their doctors.

Lambeth said she usually spends around $100 dollars on groceries every week or week-and-a-half. She said it all depends on where she goes, whether it’s Trader Joe’s or the Herbivorous Butcher Shop in Minneapolis where she lives.

On the other hand, Holden said she sees the diet as costly and a company like HyVee can’t keep vegan designated items on the shelves before they become expired.

“It tends to be more expensive items up front,” Holden said. “When it comes to the quinoa and the edamame those are filling foods. It’s a balancing beam between you’re paying more but you don’t have to eat as much.”

Veganism isn’t seen as a fad diet according to Lambeth, but rather something that is relatively new in the United States.

“Most of the U.S. is meat, potatoes, and scrambled eggs for breakfast,” Lambeth said. “That’s just what everyone is used to.”

Macon said doesn’t believe veganism is a cultural fad but said for college-aged students are willing to try something different like becoming a vegan or vegetarian.

“We do see rates of vegetarianism climb in late adolescence to their peak of about 15 percent of all college students aged 18-22,” Macon said. “Rates decline further into adulthood to about 10 percent, which is the national average.”

Macon also said it’s not “feasible” in a smaller market like Winona to constantly supply vegan based foods.

“The larger your market, the more you’ll have to support those types of markets,” Macon said. “Keep in mind, vegans living in a relatively small market can still meet their dietary needs with very basic products.”

Macon said she recommends fresh fruits, nuts, vegetables and whole grains, something that big chains like WalMart and Target will always carry.

Whether it’s a fad, hippy movement, or anything in between, Lambeth said she is happy and healthy and the flexibility of the lifestyle is important. Lambeth said she’s heard of 17 different kinds of vegetarian diets and has heard of extreme vegan diets like people who dumpster dive for their food.

Lambeth doesn’t have a problem with hunters either. She said the only thing she doesn’t want to see is “its head up on a wall for fun.”

“I think that hunting is totally fine, if you are, I don’t support hunting for sport,” Lambeth said. “I support it if it’s used for meat.”

Yet, Holden is skeptical of the validity and safety of the vegan diet.

“As a registered dietitian, I don’t recommend it,” Holden said. “Vegetarian can be done safely, but you really need to be aware of what you’re eating. You have to complement those areas that you miss.”

For Macon, it’s not always as simple as following the food pyramid.

“Keep in mind, people who are adopting this lifestyle are doing it for reasons beyond their own biological health,” Macon said. “It may be more about sending a message to the food industry or the environment. It’s not just about sticking to the food pyramid, it’s about supporting sustainable cultural change.”

If someone asked Lambeth how to become a vegan she would have one word for them: slowly.

“Go slowly and do your research,” Lambeth said. “Doing the personal research really helps finding out what your body needs.”

Racing Runs Deep with Rushford’s Tuff

This weekend marked the 58th annual running of the Daytona 500, NASCAR’s most prestigious race. Since its inception in 1959, Daytona has served as one of the most iconic tracks NASCAR visits. A lot has changed since then; the cars have changed, the rules have changed, and the drivers have changed since the infant stages of NASCAR.

Yet one thing remains the same; go faster than the rest.

Rushford, Minnesota’s, Ernie Tuff, 85, knows how to go fast, especially at Daytona International Speedway. He was dubbed “The World’s Fastest Man” after building an engine for Edward Glenn “Fireball” Roberts for the 1964 NASCAR Modified Sportsman Division race at Daytona International Speedway.

“Fireball was the greatest racecar driver in the world,” said Tuff in a recent interview. Roberts, a 2014 NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee collected 33 NASCAR Grand National (now Sprint Cup) wins, but he often preferred to dabble in the Modified Sportsman Division, where the cars were faster than the Grand National cars.

Back in the ’60s, there were two NASCAR divisions; the top-tier division was the NASCAR Grand National Series.

This series featured names like Richard Petty and David Pearson. There was a strict set of rules that every team, car and driver had to follow.

The second-tier series was the NASCAR Modified Sportsman Division. There were virtually no rules in this division, except that the car had to be at least three years older than the current model year. It was a proving ground where drivers tried to make a name for themselves and garner the attention of high-profile teams to get a shot at racing at the Grand National level.

Generally, the Grand National Series ran on Sundays, with the companion Modified Sportsman Division racing on Saturdays.

Compared to today’s NASCAR, the Modified Sportsman Division parallels the NASCAR Xfinty Series, the “AAA” of NASCAR.

Tuff is “a self-made man,” said local racing historian Dale Danielski.

Tuff said he looks up to people like Henry Ford and Thomas Edison, and it is evident with the historic photos hanging on the walls of his property. He said one of the reasons he was attracted to Ford and Edison was because they liked to tinker around and build things with their hands. So did Tuff. And he still works on project cars to this day.

Tuff never finished high school, quitting after eighth grade because he felt the stuffiness of a classroom didn’t let his creativity flow. “I would be sitting in the classroom, thinking about how to make a motor work,” said Tuff. “Not thinking about the math problems.”

Studying the life and career of Henry Ford closely, his allegiance was to the Ford Motor Company. “I didn’t like Chevys,” he said with a straight face. “Anyone who knew anything was racing a Ford.”

After a successful career as an engine builder at the local level, building engines for Jerry Richert and Scratch Daniels, among others, Tuff decided to give NASCAR a shot.

In 1964, Tuff built a 427 cubic inch Ford V8 engine and put in in a 1961 Ford Starliner, emblazoned with the No. 99 on the door. He brought it to Daytona, and Fireball Roberts was slated as the driver.

“I put in a half-inch longer stroke with fuel injection, and that’s when I got the greatest driver in the world, Fireball Roberts,” Tuff said.

During qualifying on the Wednesday prior to the race on Saturday, Roberts posted the fastest time out of the 50 drivers, reaching an average lap speed of 170.470 mph over the 2.5-mile track.

“They must’ve calculated it three or four times. It didn’t seem quite right,” he said.

The second-place qualifier, Junior Johnson, was nearly five mph slower in his 1959 Chevy, with a speed of 165.822 mph.

“It’s pretty easy to attract good talent when you have the fastest car in the world,” Tuff said.

As for the race, an ignition issue prevented Roberts and Tuff from reaching victory lane, completing just 37 of the 80 laps for the 200-mile race. The race was delayed because of rain, and was shortened because of darkness. Originally, the race was scheduled to be 250 miles. Roberts finished 44th.

Not only did Fireball Roberts drive for Tuff, but Cale Yarborough, LeeRoy Yarbrough, and Larry Frank also piloted the No. 99 Ford Starliner.

From 1964 to 1967, Tuff brought the same car to Daytona for the race, but in ’67 he visited Lee Petty in the Grand National garage area. Tuff acquired a stroked 426 cubic inch hemi Plymouth V8, swapping the Ford out for the Plymouth power.

LeeRoy Yarbrough drove the car in ’67 and he set a new speed record at Daytona. He became the first to average more than 180 mph for a single lap in a stock car.

In 1968, NASCAR president Bill France outlawed Tuff’s car in an effort to keep the competition equal, to Tuff’s chagrin.

The car then sat idle for 47 years on Tuff’s property, and didn’t run until a few years ago. Tuff keeps it in his garage with his other project cars, and he enjoys bringing it to vintage car shows in the summer.

“It wasn’t too great just being built in Rushford, Minnesota, but at least it was the best in the world.”