Viterbo University Strides Magazine Online

Medland Receives Award for Ecumenism

Viterbo President Bill Medland received the Iverson/Freking Ecumenical Recognition Award in a ceremony Jan. 19 in La Crosse.

The award, which is named in honor of a prominent Lutheran, Carl Iverson, and the late Bishop Fredrick Freking of the Diocese of La Crosse, is intended to honor those who reflect unselfish dedication to foster and promote ecumenical efforts based on mutual respect for all faiths. The award is sponsored by Bethany-St. Joseph Corporation, which was established in 1976 as a cooperative ecumenical endeavor sponsored by the Christian communities of the La Crosse area.

At the press conference where the recipients were announced to the public, Medland said, “I was humbled and shocked when I was informed. Initially I thought, ‘You must have the wrong person.’”

According to the award sponsors, Medland, who is starting his 12th year at Viterbo, was selected because of his strong leadership and his commitment to inclusiveness at southwestern Wisconsin’s only Catholic university. Viterbo has a reputation for providing a strong Catholic, Franciscan and ecumenical culture on a campus that welcomes students of all faiths. Randy Eddy, Sr., owner of Carrier Insurance of La Crosse, was named the other recipient of the award.