Purdue Northwest’s 2016 Influential Women

By Lynne Kutka

Two campus leaders have been nominated to be the 2016 Northwest Indiana Influential Women for their fields. Kris Falzone, associate vice chancellor for Marketing and Communications, was named Influential Woman for Marketing, and Karen Bishop Morris, interim head of the English department, was named Influential Woman for Education.

Falzone was nominated by two people who work with her, Pamela Riesmeyer, web accessibility coordinator, and Cheryl Lutgen, marketing and communications coordinator. Both also worked to get Falzone named Outstanding Administrator of the Year last year and speak highly of Falzone.

Riesmeyer called her an “awesome manager, absolutely amazing.”

Lutgen added that she “always has your back, even if it causes her discomfort.”

Falzone humbly accepted the award.

“It’s always an honor to be recognized by your peers,” Falzone said.

Falzone thought being named Influential Woman was “quite a shock. It’s a large category, and I’ve known and worked with many of the nominees.”

She credits PNW as a large part of her success because she has been doing significant marketing work as the unification progressed. She emphasized that it was a team effort and credits her team the most. She is always most gratified when the people around her recognize the work they have done together.

Falzone stated her passion is philanthropy. She works with the Red Cross of Northwest Indiana as a volunteer board member. She is also a board member of Leadership Northwest Indiana, a and South Shore Leadership Youth for Community Engagement. Both programs develop community leaders. Falzone is a veteran of Leadership Northwest Indiana. It helped her so much that she went on to become part of the board.

Work-life balance is something that Falzone values highly. She has tried throughout her career to champion women’s issues and make life easier for working parents. As a working parent herself, her hard work has benefitted her and those around her.

Falzone also spoke highly of fellow winner Morris.

“She’s dynamic. A solid, intelligent person,“ Falzone said. “As a colleague, she always wants what is best for Purdue, the students, and her colleagues.”

Ron Corthell, dean of the College of Humanities, English and Social Sciences, nominated Morris for the award. Morris was proud to find out she had won such an award.

“I felt very honored to be part of such a distinguished group of women who are making a difference across different sectors of Northwest Indiana,” Morris said.


This article was originally published in The Pioneer, the student-operated newspaper of Purdue University Northwest.