Matt Stricherz recognized with Community Health Service Award Mathias (Matt) Stricherz, USD Student Counseling Center Director is the recipient of the 2008 Dakota Hospital Foundation Community Health Service Award. Dakota Hospital Foundation recently hosted its annual awards dinner. Over 175 attended the dinner including members of the Dakota Hospital Foundation, friends and family of the award recipients and medical staff members and employees of Sanford Vermillion Medical Center. In addition to recognition of Stricherz, members of the Dakota Hospital Foundation board also assisted in awarding $6,000 in scholarships to area students. The evening concluded with a message of inspiration from keynote speaker, Donna Manring. Jerry Johnson, Vice President, Dakota Hospital Foundation board of directors presented the Community Health Service award. Johnson spoke to his personal experience working with Stricherz during his years as Dean of the School of Business at The University of South Dakota. â�?�?The thing about Matt is that he is always there when needed,â�? said Johnson. â�?�?The Community Health Service Award is an opportunity for the Dakota Hospital Foundation to annually recognize one of our healthcare professional who, because of their significant community involvement and dedication to their profession, contribute greatly to the health and wellness of the entire Vermillion community,â�? remarked Jerry Yutrzenka, DHF President. Stricherz and his wife Kelly along with children, Rachael and Oliver, ventured to the Vermillion community in the spring of 1989. For Matt it was a homecoming to South Dakota. He was born and raised in Watertown, SD. After one year at Huron College, in 1967, Matt joined the Navy and then returned back to Huron College in 1971, graduating in 1972. He completed his masterâ�?�?s degree at the University of Guam in 1973 and doctorate at Texas Tech University in 1976. Additional coursework has prepared him for work with college students, chemically involved persons, persons at risk for violence, and persons with co-occurring disorders. Mattâ�?�?s wife Kelly is a lawyer in private practice. Rachael works for MTV Network as the Entertainment Group Delivery Manager. Oliver is a student at USD. Matt stayed active in the Navy through the Reserves and retired as a Radioman Command Master Chief in 1999 with 31 years 9 months of service. Matt currently directs the USD Student Counseling Center. He is a Licensed Psychologist, Certified Prevention Specialist and Level III Chemical Dependency Counselor. Mattâ�?�?s involvement with serving the community are through job and service related activities. Matt has been involved with the D-Days Crisis Team, Greater Vermillion Area Coalition Against Alcohol and Drugs, Vermillion Boxing Team and USA Boxing South Dakota, Wase Wapka Community, USDâ�?�?s Office of Violence Against Women (SavVy!) initiative, Safe Rides Bus, soccer, Vermillion/USD Sexual Assault Response Team, Governorâ�?�?s Advisory Board for Alcohol and Drugs, and as the Chairman for the South Dakota Certification Board for Alcohol and Drug Professionals. Matt believes that being involved is the way to make the community stronger, smarter, safer and healthier for all persons and especially for our youth. He is forever grateful to his mentors, students and office staff that have taught him so much. He is grateful to his patient and understanding wife and family. Established by the Dakota Hospital Foundation Board of Directors in 2001, the Community Health Service Award recognizes outstanding contributions of time, talent and resources benefiting the health of the community. Recipients are selected by the Dakota Hospital Foundation Board for their significant lifetime dedication or unique, noteworthy contributions to community health services.
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