WMU News

WMU official named one of nation's top-10 businesswomen for 1999

Sept. 2, 1999

KALAMAZOO -- A 15-year Western Michigan University veteran has been named one of the top-10 businesswomen in America for 1999 by the American Business Women's Association.

Marilyn S. Kritzman, assistant manager of the Office of Residence Life, was selected for the award from a nationwide field of 70,000 ABWA members. She will be officially honored at the organization's national convention in Kansas City, Mo., Oct. 6 through 10.

Founded in 1949, ABWA helps change women's lives through education and networking opportunities. Since 1953, it has annually recognized 10 members for outstanding achievement in their careers, community activities and educational development. The top 10 are judged and selected by non-ABWA members noted for their knowledge and support of working women.

Kritzman was cited for her career accomplishments in a traditionally male-dominated field and for her role as an inspiration to working women as well as her active involvement in professional and community organizations.

She joined WMU in 1982 as a residence hall director and was promoted to her current position in 1991. Previously, she was a residence hall director at Ferris State University from 1980 to 1982 and an assistant judicial services hearing officer at Ferris from 1981 to 1982.

As assistant manager of residence life, formerly residence hall facilities, she was responsible for helping to direct the daily operations of a 22-building, 6,000-bed residence hall system. The system has an $18 million budget and employs some 400 professional and student staff members.

Kritzman's duties have included hiring, training and supervising residence hall directors and developing and implementing programs for hall directors and student employees. Current duties include planning and supervising special repair and renovation projects and encompass a variety of budget, purchasing, collective bargaining and advising activities.

One of only a few females in residence hall facilities middle management, Kritzman's efforts to pave the way for other women to advance in her field figured significantly in her top-10 selection.

"My middle management career has included forging the way for women after me as well as being a role model and mentor for young women in our profession-while having very few role models and mentors myself," Kritzman said.

"I'm proud to say that nine young female professionals with whom I worked have moved into similar positions on other college campuses."

Kritzman has been an active member of ABWA since 1991. She has served in a number of leadership positions with Michigan chapters of the organization, including the West Michigan chapter, of which she is president, and the Wolverine chapter, of which she is a past president.

Also active in professional and community organizations, Kritzman has been a presenter at more than 150 state and national conferences and is an adviser for the National Residence Hall Honorary as well as a past president of WMU's Administrative Professional Association and the Kalamazoo Area Women's Festival.

She has been honored for professional excellence several times, earning such WMU accolades as the Office of Residence Life's Innovative Project Award and APA's Outstanding Leadership and Outstanding Professional awards. Other honors include the Outstanding Service Award and the Professional Development Award presented by the Great Lakes Association of College and University Housing Officers.

Kritzman received a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice from Northern Michigan University in 1980 and a master of arts degree in communication from WMU in 1987.

Media contact: Jeanne Baron, 616 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

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