News From Terre Haute, Indiana


May 12, 2013

Newsmakers: May 12, 2013

TERRE HAUTE — Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve has recognized John Thompson, president of Thompson Thrift Construction, and Paul Thrift, president of Thompson Thrift Development, as “Patriotic Employers.”

In recognition of the honor, the two men received Patriot Awards from ESGR for their active support and encouragement of America’s armed forces that enables staff members to serve in the National Guard and Reserve.

Retired Army Lt. Col. Clyde Stringer, a member of the Indiana ESGR Committee, presented the awards.

“All of us appreciate and are proud of ESGR’s recognition of Thompson Thrift for its support of its service people,” said Thompson. “At the same time, we realize that all of the credit goes to the young men and women who serve in our armed forces and make great sacrifices in order to protect our freedom. As a company and as individuals, we feel we can’t do enough for them.”

The Patriot Award recognizes individual supervisors nominated by an employee serving in the National Guard or Reserve for support provided directly to the nominating service member.

Army Reserve Capt. Rob Dougherty, a superintendent with Thompson Thrift Construction, nominated Thompson for the award. Dougherty served his second deployment in the Middle East last year. He returned from Afghanistan in December. He previously served in Iraq.

Air National Guard 1st Lt. Eric Wojak, a project manager with Thompson Thrift Development, nominated Thrift for the award. Wojak will deploy to Kuwait this summer.

“It was very gratifying to see everyone at Thompson Thrift pitch in and collect items to fill CARE packages 3 Rob while he was overseas,” Thrift said. “Some staff wrote letters to put in the packages and students at a local elementary school also wrote letters, which were very entertaining and much appreciated.  A lot of people contributed to the effort and share the credit.”

ESGR is a Department of Defense organization. It is a staff group within the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs, which is a part of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. It was established in 1972 to promote cooperation and understanding between Reserve component members and their civilian employers.

• • •

Wayne Turley of Paris, Ill., was named “Caregiver of the Year” at the 11th annual Caregiver Expo April 20 at Paris Community Hospital/Family Medical Center. This marked the sixth year of the Caregiver of the Year award, which recognizes an outstanding caregiver in Edgar County.

Turley was one of four nominees for this year’s award. He has served as the primary caregiver for his wife, Ellie, who has Alzheimer’s disease. The couple has been married for 57 years, and together were caregivers for their parents. Turley regularly attends monthly meetings of the PCH/FMC Caregiver Support Group.

In her nomination form, Ella Fairchild, wrote: “Even though Ellie is now in a nursing home, he [Wayne] still stays up on information and is very attentive to his wife’s needs.”

As Caregiver of the Year, Turley received a gift basket and Wal-Mart gift certificate.

• • •

The Wabash Valley Correctional Facility in Carlisle paid tribute to its 664 staff members during Employee Recognition Day activities at the maximum-security prison.

Gov. Michael Pence proclaimed May 5-11 as Correctional Employees Week noting, “this important work is carried out by correctional employees who quietly go about their important work with little public recognition.”

Department of Correction facilities across Indiana dedicate the week to both honor and thank the men and women who work in the challenging field of corrections.

WVCF Staff members receiving special recognition for their outstanding achievements over the past year include:

• Employee of the Year: Joseph Burkhardt/Lawrence County, Ill.  

• Supervisor of the Year: Amy Eickmeier/Vigo County    

• Officer of the Year: Fred Roessler/Sullivan County

  • Rookie of the Year: Charlie Dugan/Sullivan County

Twenty employees received five-year service pins, 19 staff members earned 10-year service awards and 19 marked 15 years of service. Thirty-three staffers were honored for 20 years of service, two for 25, one for 30 years and one for 35 years.

Superintendent Richard Brown offered his congratulations to Wabash Valley employees for their dedication, saying, “You are to be commended for your public service and on the job professionalism every day of the year. You maintain public safety, dealing with challenging situations in an efficient and effective manner. You are committed to preparing offenders for a successful return to society. You have my thanks and deep respect.”

2013 marks the 21st year of service for the facility, going on line with its first offenders in December of 1992.

• • •

Dr. Rumu Sarkar has won a Fulbright Scholarship and has been added to the Fulbright Specialist Roster as an expert in international law. She will be available for the next five years (April 2013-May 2018) to be a guest lecturer, upon request, to foreign universities and U.S. educational institutions functioning abroad.

Sarkar is a distinguished guest lecturer and is currently serving on the Advisory Board for Loyola University Chicago School of Law. She also was an adjunct law professor and a visiting researcher at Georgetown University Law Center where she taught a graduate law seminar, and has extensively published law review articles on a variety of subjects. Sarkar has authored two legal textbooks, International Development Law (Oxford University Press, 2009) and Transnational Business Law (Kluwer Law Int’l, 2003). Sarkar was awarded the 2007 Grand Prize by the St. Cyr Foundation for her essay, “A Fearful Symmetry: A New Global Balance of Power?” The St. Cyr Foundation supports the St. Cyr military academy — in effect, France’s West Point. An expanded version of the essay, “The New Soldier In An Age of Asymmetric Conflict,” was published by Vij Books India in January. She also was awarded Third Prize by the Colonel Arthur D. Simons Center for its 2012 Interagency Writing Competition.

Sarkar is currently serving as senior legal advisor to Millennium Partners, and international development consulting group based in Charlottesville, Va. Immediately prior to this position, she was the former general counsel for the 2005 Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission. She also served as the general counsel for the Overseas Basing Commission, prior to joining the BRAC Commission.

Sarkar completed her undergraduate studies at Barnard College, Columbia University. She is the daughter of Dr. Anil K Sarkar and Dr. Dipa Sarkar, both retired Terre Haute physicians.


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