2008 Young Alumni AwardStephanie Winquist ’98
Stephanie Winquist is an outstanding example of the many alumni who live the college’s long tradition of vision, service and community involvement. As she says, “St. Norbert College has definitely impacted my life.” Academically, the college “gave me the skills, particularly in writing, to do well in law school.” Professors Benton, Faase, Myers and Digeser “provided me with the ability to look at things from various angles, to analyze, to understand, and to adapt to or change things.” In addition, she appreciated the “opportunities to become involved and develop leadership skills,” especially through her participation in Kappa Beta Gamma and Panhellenic Council while at St. Norbert.
After graduating with a major in sociology, Stephanie worked for a year in the Green Bay area—including a stint at Children’s World. She then enrolled in the University of Dayton Law School and subsequently earned her J.D. in 2002. For the past six years, she has been a law clerk for a federal magistrate judge in the U.S. District Court Southern District of Ohio. Her work there focuses on assisting the magistrate judge by researching various legal issues, then drafting memoranda that apply relevant statutes and case law to current claims to assist the judge in making his reports.
In addition to her successful law career, Stephanie has made Dayton her “real” home by the difference she has made through a multitude of volunteer activities and commitments. Some of her volunteer activities include being a board member of I.C.U. (Inspire, Create, Unite), an organization that helps at-risk youth by promoting multi-generational mentoring, community involvement and cultural understanding; being a member of Junior League, a group that promotes developing women’s potential through training, leadership, volunteerism and improving the local community; mentoring a pre-teen girl through Big Brothers Big Sisters; and volunteering with numerous special events at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens. As a committee member of the Kerr-Drill Cemetery restoration project, she not only gave many hours of hands-on labor at the restoration site, but organized an event to raise money to aid in restoration of this historic cemetery—the final resting place of pioneer individuals who were active in the Underground Railroad. For her efforts, Dayton’s mayor awarded her a Heritage and Recognition Award in 2007.
Stephanie’s greatest contribution, however, involves activities with, and on behalf of, animals. As a member of SICSA (Society for the Improvement of Conditions of Stray Animals), she works tirelessly: volunteering at animal shelters, helping with pet facilitated therapy programs, educating people on humane treatment of animals, bringing puppies and kittens to places such as nursing homes, event planning, fundraising, and helping with customer services and adoptions.
Stephanie’s ties with St. Norbert continue, also, as she has worked with the alumni office to plan her class’s five-year reunion, represented St. Norbert College at high school college nights, and helped plan and execute a Southern Ohio alumni event.
For fun, she participates in the Greater Dayton Rowing Association, the Celtic Academy of Irish Dance and the Dayton Ballet Barre, and she served on Kappa Beta Gamma’s national board for five years.
In conclusion, Stephanie says her “philosophy is to enjoy each day,” and she advises today’s St. Norbert students “to enjoy their time at St. Norbert College.”