Past Hall of Fame Inductees  

Reeve, John R.
Class of 1930
In 1934 he joined Appleton Coated Paper Company after graduating from Lawrence University.  He retired in 1977 after helping to build the company, now known as Appleton Paper, Inc. into a successful corporation in the paper industry.

With support from his family he also devoted much time to the community, including his church, Lawrence University, the YMCA, and Boy Scouts.

Inducted May, 1999

Rosenblum, Martin Jack, Ph.D
Class of 1964
Dr. Martin Jack Rosenblum is an internationally recognized singer, songwriter, poet, scholar, educator, and  musician. Over the course of his nearly forty year academic career, Rosenblum served the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee as both faculty and administrator.  Having begun in the English Department, Rosenblum went on to serve as Senior Lecturer at the Peck School of the Arts Music Department, for which he founded the Rock and Roll Certificate program. 

Throughout this time Rosenblum created over a dozen albums of original songs and more than twenty books of poetry, scholarship, and and criticism. Fueling Rosenblum’s creativity was his interest in all things Americana. In the acclaimed “Holy Rangers Harley-Davidson’s Poems”, he likened the motorcycle rider to the American cowboy. After the collection became the top-selling book of poetry in 1989, Rosenblum released “Holy Ranger’s Free Hand”, a major label record album which received chart recognition in 1991. As a Recording artist, he was also the recipient of a Gibson Guitars artist endorsement.

Eventually Rosenblum’s passion for Harley-Davidson’s history and culture led to a parallel career as Historian for the the Harley-Davidson Motor Company. As such, Rosenblum was instrumental in creating the Milwaukee Harley-Davidson Museum which opened in 2008. 

Dr. Rosenblum’s accolades include two Wisconsin Area Music Industry awards for Alternative Artists and Rock Journalist. He won the Shepherd Express Reader’s Choice for Best Poet of the Year, and was featured in Peter Jennings’ ABC series “The Century”, discussing Rock and Roll history. His autobiography was published in the Contemporary American Artists Series.

Inducted September 2017

Rugland, Walter S.
Began practice of his profession of actuary in 1961. Served as president of the Society of Actuaries leading the world’s largest organization of actuaries, and as president of the International Actuarial Association leading the world’s forty national and specialized actuarial associations. Initiated restructuring of both for the 21st century.

While located in Chicago and Hartford, CT served insurers worldwide as a consulting actuary.  In 1998 assumed a leadership role in Appleton’s Aid Association for Lutherans. Fostered AAL’s look to the future culminating in merger with Lutheran Brotherhood.  Refined AAL’s position as corporate citizen, community partner and volunteer advocate, leading by example.

Exemplifying the values of the nurturing and caring community of his youth, focuses his life’s activity on service and innovation.

Inducted June 6, 2002

Ryan, Charles J. M.D.
Charles J. Ryan, M.D. is the Thomas Perkins Distinguished Professor of Clinical Medicine and Urology at the Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of California, San Francisco(UCSF). Dr. Ryan earned a BA in Philosophy, magna cum laude from Marquette University and attended the University of Wisconsin Medical School. He trained at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, serving as Chief Resident and at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York. He is the Program Leader for genitourinary medical oncology at UCSF and is Chair of the UCSF Committee on Human Research, which oversees the ethical conduct of research at the institution. He serves as Co-Chair of the National Cancer Institute’s Prostate Cancer Task Force and the leader of the Advance Cancer Cadre in the Alliance for Clinical Trials in oncology, a national clinical trials group.

His research focuses on the development of new treatments for advanced prostate cancer and he has published over 100 articles and chapter in the world’s leading medical journals including the New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Ryan was the Principal Investigator for the development of Abiraterone Acetate, a treatment now considered a standard of care in advanced prostate cancer that has been administered to over 200,000 patients worldwide.

Inducted October 2016

Sager, Kenneth
Poet Robert Frost declared that “home is a place where they have to take you in.” Such is my simple admission relative to Appleton where for dozens of years that community’s schools (high school and university) have taken me in and intellectually and emotionally shaped my walking to and fro. In between, spaces, cello, and choral activities have yielded meaning to heart and soul, got me used to living.

A teacher is a promoter of students teaching themselves. Schools (K-16) ought to be other than climates of discipline control and swallowing of dusty texts. Learning ought teach the how to live, and what to live for in Becoming an awake human being spurred by passion measured with yard sticks of mercy, love, and kindness. The process of visioning and accomplishing such goals, with hope as a shield, are bound in Thoreau’s suggestion that education means experimentation, wholeness, and engagement where one lives.

Inducted June, 2004

Seifert, Kathi
Committed to her family, friends, church, and community; passionate about growing Kimberly-Clark brands and businesses worldwide; dedicated to developing and mentoring others, and advancing diversity efforts.

Inducted May, 2001

Smith, Bradford
Benefitted from Appleton’s commitment to excellence in education. Attended Princeton and Columbia Law School, became an attorney and represented the software industry in Washington, D.C. and London. Joined Microsoft, working in Paris and Seattle, becoming general counsel in 2002. Helped to adapt the law to the challenges and opportunities of computing technology. Committed to ensuring that the industry plays a responsible civic role and that computing’s benefits are distributed broadly throughout society. A strong believer in family and friends and giving back to the community.

Inducted June 6, 2002

Stephenson, Rollie
Class of 1964
Rollie Stephenson is the CEO of Faith Technologies, Inc. a company whose heritage started over 100 years ago with Roland’s great-grandfather.

Rollie believes in giving back to the community and has generously supported numerous non-profit organizations throughout the years.  He has served on the Board of Directors for many organizations and continues to support and encourage his employees to be actively involved in their community.

Rollie’s philosophy has alway been leadership through serving others.  He’s also an avid auto enthusiast.  Rollie’s favorite quote is “Don’t get too full of yourself, or there won't be room for others.”

Inducted June 2011

Stephenson, Dr. Larry
Class of 1962
Since my Appleton school days, I have been partial to a quotation by Theodore Roosevelt:

“Far better to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory or defeat.”

I would like to believe these inspiring words by President Roosevelt have served me well throughout my life.

Inducted June 2007

Stringham, Brigadier Gen. Joseph
Class of 1957
Brigadier General Joseph S. Stringham retired in 1992 after serving more than 32 years in the U. S. Army. He served at all echelons of command from the platoon through brigade, at the highest levels of the U. S. Army staff in the Pentagon, and Military Attache in the US Embassies of Brazil and Mexico.

For over half of his military service, he was in overseas theaters from East and SE Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and Latin America. Importantly, he served 42 months of his 30+ years on active duty with US American forces units engaged in close combat and was recognized with five US combat decorations, including the Silver Star for valor, and the highest combat decoration the country of El Salvador awards. General Stringham is an Airborne Infantry Infantryman who served in Special Forces units and commanded the one-of-a-kind US Army Ranger Regiment. While serving in Vietnam he organized, trained, and led in combat the for MIKE FORCE rapid action force, which was featured in the John Wayne movie “The Green Berets”.  In 1995 he was inducted into the prestigious US Army Ranger Hall of Fame, and in 2010 he was inducted into a Special Forces (Green Beret) Hall of Fame.

A favorite quote of Brigadier General Stringham is “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog”. Mark Twain

Inducted October 2013

Taber, Gladys Bagg
Class of 1916
Cherished by readers around the world, her books express a love of nature, family, music and poetry, as well as well as domestic pleasures such as pets and cooking. In stressful times she reminds us all these can be sources of inner peace. Although often labeled a New England writer for her popular Stillmeadow (Conn.) and Still Cove (Cape Cod) books, her best-loved work is “Especially Father”, a portrait of her father, Lawrence, geology professor Rufus Mather bag, and hometown life in Appleton and Door County. Her lifelong values were deeply rooted in Wisconsin.
Inducted June 6, 2002

Whitehead, Barbara Dafoe
Class of 1962
My work on behalf of children and families owes a great deal to my happy childhood in Appleton. It inspired my belief that a happy childhood is not an impossible ideal, but an achievable goal for all communities that truly seek it.

Inducted June, 2006

Whitehead, Ralph, Jr.
Class of 1961
This honor belongs to all of the Appleton West graduates who have become teachers and all of the teachers at Appleton West who have inspired these graduates to follow them into the classroom. It is my privilege as just one of these teachers to accept this honor on their behalf.

Inducted June, 2010

Wriston, Walter B.
Class of 1937
After graduating from Appleton High School, earned a B.A. from Wesleyan and an M.A. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. Served a year as an officer of the Department of State, about three years in the Army, and then joined what is now Citigroup becoming CEO in 1967. He was Chairman of the Business Council and Chairman of President Reagan’s Economic Policy Advisory Board.  He is a trustee of the New York Presbyterian Hospital and the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. Authored two books: ”Risk and Other Four Letter Words” and “Twilight of Sovereignty”.

Inducted June, 2004

Zuehlke, Gus
Class of 1939
After graduating from the University of Notre Dame, he enlisted in the Navy, and served four years in the Pacific as commanding officer of an amphibious craft. He received the Bronze Star for his performance under enemy fire in the Saipan invasion. On return to Appleton he founded Valley Bank Corporation, and built it into a multi-million dollar statewide company. With the support of his family, he devoted time to the community and his church.

Inducted May, 2001

Zwerg, Jim
Class of 1958
Growing up in all-White Appleton did not provide an opportunity to interact with persons of other cultures or races. It was not until I entered college, where I had an African American roommate, that my eyes were opened to the reality of discrimination, prejudice, and segregation, witnessing first hand the verbal and physical abuse he encountered angered me. Amazingly he never reacted in kind. I was impressed and wondered how I would react were I in his shoes. I got my opportunity to find out my Junior year when I was accepted as an exchange student at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. 

I quickly became aware of how little I knew of the scope and impact of segregation. Within the week I had observed my first demonstration and attended my workshop on nonviolence.  I met the student leaders, John Lewis, Bernard Lafayette, Diane Nash, and James Bevel. I became an active participant in Sit-ins and Stand-ins. Over time I was selected to be a member of the Student Coordinating Committee. It was in this capacity that I was among those who volunteered and was selected to continue the Freedom Ride after C.O.R.E. riders abandoned their efforts following the fire-bombing of their bus and the severe beatings they encountered. I was arrested in Birmingham and beaten in Montgomery.

I was blessed to be part of a Movement that made a difference, not just locally, but nationally. One does not have to act on the national level to be effective. A simple act of kindness can make a significant impact. You can begin at home, in school, in your community.  Find an issue. Stand up! Speak out! Accept Gandhi’s challenge: “Become the change you want to see in the world”.

Inducted September 2017