2013 IVCC-LPO Hall of Fame inductees
individuals and a pair of teams were honored at the Illinois Valley Community
College Foundation’s sixth annual IVCC-LPO Hall of Fame induction ceremony Jan.
26, 2013 in La Salle-Peru Township High School’s Matthiessen Auditorium.
were retired English instructor Ed Krolak, former nursing division chair Carole
Caresio Haas, Chairman of Carus Corporation Blouke Carus and Caterpillar
Director of Global Product Validation Jim Blass, an IVCC alumnus. In addition,
the 1987-88 and 1988-89 IVCC men’s basketball teams were inducted together.
teaching at La Salle-Peru High School in the 1960s, Krolak taught at IVCC from 1969 to 1994. A highly-respected English
and literature instructor, Krolak taught in England in 1987 as part of the
Fulbright Exchange Program.
speaker and lecturer, he has given presentations at dozens of libraries,
schools and civic organizations on topics ranging from Illinois Valley history,
to literature, to poetry and the English language. In 2012, he was the
homecoming speaker at his alma mater, Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa.
Haas, the former Carole Caresio, taught
nursing at IVCC beginning in 1975 before being named Director of Nursing.
Leading the department until 1996, Haas was a renowned advocate for associate
degree nursing in Illinois and IVCC’s graduating classes routinely earned one
of the state’s highest pass rates on the National Association of Nursing’s
National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX).
Carus’s connection to IVCC traces back
to the mid-1960s when he chaired the Illinois Valley Community College
Committee (IVCCC) – the group largely responsible for establishing the college
at its present Oglesby location. An electrical engineering graduate of Caltech,
Carus holds seven patents and helped modernize the manufacturing process for
potassium permanganate at Carus Corporation in La Salle, a world
leader in that process.
and his wife Marianne founded Cricket Magazine in 1972. There are now 14
children’s magazines with two million readers across the world. A volunteer and
major contributor to numerous local community organizations in the Illinois
Valley, he founded the Illinois Valley Fine Arts Trust to fund numerous area
Blass earned his mechanical design
technology degree from IVCC in 1975 and that same year went to work for
Caterpillar where he was promoted through 13 positions and held 14 U.S. patents
before being named General Manager of the Aurora and Peterlee, England, plants
his leadership, the Pontiac Fuel System Facility attained Caterpillar’s 5-star
cleanliness rating, the highest rating ever awarded a production operation.
Before he left the Aurora plant in 2012, the facility received the highest
Employee Engagement ratings in its history, the highest quality levels and the
2011 Chairman’s Safety Award.
The 1987-88 and 1988-89 teams are being
honored together because the teams shared many of the same stars: Mark Cooper,
John Freeman, Adrian Hutt, Chris Daniels and Corey Akers – and the same Dean
Riley-led coaching staff.
1987-88 team finished 27-9, won the college’s first Region title in 29 years
and captured third at the Division II National Junior College Athletic
Association championships at University Center, Mich. – the highest finish in
school history. Daniels was Region IV tournament MVP and Riley won Region IV
Coach of the Year for the N4C conference co-champion Apaches (12-2).
five of its top six players, the 1988-89 squad earned the nation’s regular
season number one ranking by winning 23 straight en route to an undefeated N4C
run (14-0) and overall 30-2 record, best in IVCC history.
the teams won 22 straight N4C games, 23 straight at home and finished with a
combined 57 wins against just 11 losses. Riley’s 12-year record at IVCC was
information, call (815) 224-0253. For a listing of all IVCC-LPO Hall of Fame inductees
from 2008 through 2013, visit www.ivcc.edu/halloffameinductees.