Sheryl Riesmeyer, Distinguished Volunteer
Sheryl Riesmeyer of New Bethlehem, currently serving a two-year term as the president of the Clarion University Pin Club, is the 2008 Clarion University Alumni Association Distinguished Volunteer.
She will be one of seven individuals honored with a Clarion University Alumni Association Distinguished Award on Friday, October 3, during a banquet in 6 p.m. in the Gemmell Student Complex Multi-Purpose Room. A reception will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Gemmell Student Complex Rotunda.
RSVP for the banquet at due by Sept. 21 to firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone (814) 393-1784 . The cost is $40 per person. Checks should be made payable to the Clarion University Foundation, Inc., and mailed to Clarion University Foundation, Inc., 840 Wood St., Clarion, Pa. 16214. Those attending are asked to indicate any food allergies and the honoree for whom they are attending.
Clarion University – Venango campus will hold a distinguished alumni reception on Thursday, Oct. 2 at 5 p.m. in the Robert W. Rhoades Center.
Being honored are: Distinguished Alumni – Edward Bauer (’70); Distinguished Service – H.E. (Gene) and Susanne Burns; Distinguished Faculty – Dr. Gail (Fulton ’66) Grejda; Distinguished Achievement – Brigadier General Peter Talleri (’79); and Venango Campus Distinguished Alumna – Rhonda Steigerwald (’75).
In addition a special presentation of the President’s Medallion will be made to the Honorable Fred C. McIlhattan (’70) in acknowledgement of his 40 years of public service.
The Pin Club holds benefits to raise money for the wrestling program. A golf tournament last year raised over $7,000 with half of the money going to the Bob Bubb/George Williams Wrestling Scholarship and the other half to buying items such as exercise bikes, camcorders, and televisions for the program.
The Club also sponsored an alumni gathering when the wrestling team visited Rider for a match. Over 45 Clarion alumni gathered to watch the match and have dinner with the team. This year they plan to host a similar event when the wrestling team visits Cleveland State.
“I didn’t expect anything like this when I got a phone call,” said Riesmeyer upon learning about the award. “I’m doing something that I like to do and feel I am supposed to do. I love Clarion Wrestling and anything that I do for the program is a labor of love. This is very humbling.”
Riesmeyer extends her support of the team to her hobby, photography. Each year, she takes photos of the wrestlers during their matches, compiles them in individual photo albums, and presents them to each wrestler at the year-end banquet.
“I feel it is a small way for me to give something back to the Clarion Wrestling program,” said Riesmeyer. “This year at the banquet the team presented me with an “Under Armour” sweatshirt with Clarion wrestling and my name embroidered on it and a matted framed team picture. Each member of the team wrote a small note of appreciation and signed their name to the mat board. To receive the signed picture from the team meant so much to me and I thought that was so special.”
Perhaps the most amazing fact about all of this is that Riesmeyer had no connection to Clarion University and had never seen a wrestling match prior to 1979,
“My husband, Mark, and I both worked for the postal service and we transferred here when he was named postmaster at Strattanville in 1979,” recalled Riesmeyer. “We noticed a wrestling match at Clarion University against Oklahoma and decided to go. We didn’t know Clarion was Division I in wrestling and I had never been to a wrestling match before.”
The Riesmeyer’s were amazed at the crowd and the atmosphere in Tippin Gymnasium. The match came down to the heavyweight match and Clarion won and the university community would benefit because of the victory.
“I was hooked,” said Riesmeyer. Clarion would benefit from the catch.
Several matches later, Chip Buck of Burns & Burns of Clarion, asked the Riesmeyers if they would like to come up to the Pin Room where refreshments are served to Clarion wrestling supporters. Riesmeyer accepted an invitation to join the board of the Pin Club during the 1984-85 wrestling season.
“The sports programs have given Mark and I a lot of enjoyment,” said Riesmeyer. “Bob Bubb was the head coach when we first attended. I have the highest respect for him. He made it a point to talk to everyone, including the opponents, and shake their hand.”
Riesmeyer worked at the Clarion Post Office for 11 years before being named the postmaster for Distant. She retired on Oct. 3, 2006, following 36 years with the postal service. But, she is not about to retire from wrestling.
“I will continue with the Pin Club until my term is up,” she said. “I will continue to work with them for as long as they want me to do it.”