WMU Names 2004 "W" Club Recipients

KALAMAZOO - Longtime booster and former Bronco baseball player Maurice "Suds" Sumney, along with Susan A. Wolfe, volunteer and past president of the Southwest Michigan Chapter of the "W" Club, have been named 2004 Man and Woman of the Year by the WMU "W" Varsity Club.

Both recipients will be honored at halftime of the WMU men's basketball game against Ball State on Saturday, Jan. 24. A pre-game reception will also be held in the conference rooms of University Arena. To make reservations, contact Irene Bracken at (269) 387-3062.

Sumney came to WMU from Sturgis, Mich., as a leadoff hitter and second baseman for the Broncos. His career was interrupted during World War II where he served as a tail gunner on a B-17 Flying Fortress, where he sustained injuries ending his baseball career. He returned to WMU as a second semester sophomore and continued with Bronco athletics, working as an assistant sports information director for Athletic Director Judson Hyames.

In 1956 he was elected as the first president of the Bronco Boosters, which eventually became the Mike Gary Fund. He was also director of the WMU Foundation, and currently serves as director emeriti.

Still a staple within the Bronco baseball program, Sumney has made the annual spring trip for 28 years. He continues to fund raise for the Russell-Sumney Baseball Endowment formed to assist with the baseball travel budget. Sumney also coordinates events for the Dug Out Club, a group where he is a two-time past president. Outside of WMU, Sumney has been active with the American Cancer Society. After 25 years as a board member, he was named an Honorary Lifetime Member of the society in 2003.

Wolfe, who graduated from WMU in 1971 with a bachelor's degree in education, has been a constant supporter of WMU athletics and a longtime volunteer and community leader in Southwest Michigan and St. Joseph. In addition to her memberships with Friends of the Library and the Krasl Art Center of St. Joseph, she has been a past board member for the Genealogical Society of Southwest Michigan and the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors.

Wolfe's ties to WMU athletics run deep. She has volunteered for numerous fund-raising campaigns and has been a WMU donor for over 25 years. A member of the Blue Line Club since 1986, she served as treasurer from 1997 to 2000, and is in her fifth year as club president. A WMU Alumni Association Life Member, she is past president of the Southwest Michigan "W" Club Chapter.

Wolfe is an office assistant for Phoenix Life Insurance in St. Joseph where she lives with her husband Richard.

Susan A. Wolfe

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