STAR JOURNAL REPORT
Two special awards were announced May 19 in conjunction with the Leadership Oneida County class of 2015-16 graduation. The Leadership Oneida County Outstanding Alumni Award was presented to Captain Lloyd Gauthier of the Oneida County Sheriff’s Department. After completing the Leadership Oneida County program, Capt. Gauthier has lead program days relating to local government and law enforcement, actively participated in planning and organizing the program on the steering committee, has presented a “Leadership 2.0” program to Leadership Oneida County alumni, and this year facilitated monthly book discussions with the Leadership Oneida County participants.
Beyond Leadership Oneida County, Capt. Gauthier has demonstrated his commitment to leadership in his personal and professional life, and works to actively foster leadership growth and personal development among employees in the Sheriff’s Department. He has been an active leader within his church and the wider community. He currently serves on the board for the Rhinelander District Library.
The Outstanding Alumni Award is presented annually at the graduation ceremony to one Leadership Oneida County alum who is continuing to develop a leadership presence in the county and who have used experiences from the program to further their service to the county.
A second community leader award was presented Thursday. The Mel Davidson Leadership Award was presented to Tom Rulseh of Three Lakes for his commitment to improving Oneida County communities, particularly through expanding outdoor and silent sport recreation opportunities. Rulseh, founder and president of the Three Eagle Trail Foundation, lead the development and construction of the Three Eagle Trail, a walking, biking, and ski trail that connects the communities of Three Lakes in Oneida County and Eagle River in Vilas County. Rulseh has also been a long-time member of the Oneida County Biking and Walking Trails Council, which has a vision to create a walkable and bikeable Oneida County. He is active in civic life, and dedicated to committees and boards that enhance the livability of the Three Lakes community.
Rulseh has shared the story of leadership in developing the Three Eagle Trail as part of the Leadership Oneida County program day that is now held annually in Three Lakes. The program day highlights the roles of tourism, arts and culture, and natural resources in the economic and social life of Oneida County.
The Mel Davidson Award originated in 2011 and is named in honor of Mel Davidson of Rhinelander, a founder of Leadership Oneida County, for his years of service to the community. The award recognizes any person in Oneida County that shows outstanding leadership and service within the county — nominees do not necessarily have to have previous history with the Leadership Oneida County program.
Leadership Oneida County is a nine-month program that cultivates and prepares emerging leaders in Oneida County. Leadership Oneida County creates an awareness of services and organizations within the County, and reinforces an individual’s call to civic responsibility and citizen involvement. Applications for the program are accepted in August of each year. The program begins in late September and meets monthly, culminating with final community service project presentation and graduation ceremony in late May.
For more information about Leadership Oneida County or nominating individuals for the leadership awards, contact the Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce at 715-365-7464.