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Three more La Crosse area volunteers added to the list of Iverson-Freking Award winners



A La Crosse area couple and a Franciscan nun are this year’s winners of a well-known local award for service to the community.

The Iverson-Freking Awards for 2024 are being given to Joe and Barb Kruse, and Sister Mary Ann Gschwind, by the Bethany St. Joseph nursing homes. The annual award, which was started in the 1980’s, recognizes area residents for their faith and volunteer work.

Sister Mary Ann has been a principal and superintendent of schools. She has nominated others for the award, but says she didn’t expect to receive it herself.

Joe Kruse is a retired regional chairman of the Mayo medical center in La Crosse, and his wife Barb has been a hospital dietitian, and a teacher at Western Tech. They were also the 2016 Festmaster and Frau for Oktoberfest. Joe says he and Barb feel that doing volunteer work is fulfilling. Barb says people should be willing to help others, when they see a need to be met.

The three winners will be guests of honor at a Radisson Center luncheon on January 24th. The awards were named for Lutheran businessman Carl Iverson and former La Crosse Catholic Bishop Frederick Freking, who both helped found the Bethany nursing home.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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