Steve VandenAvond, Northern Michigan University vice president for Extended Learning and Community Engagement, received the UPCEA Central Region’s John L. Christopher Outstanding Leadership Award. UPCEA is the Association for Professional, Continuing and Online Education. VandenAvond was honored Sept. 27 at the regional conference in St. Louis. “Steve is a highly innovative leader who is deeply committed to increasing access and educational attainment for adult and nontraditional students,” stated the award description. “He has been a highly engaged and visible leader in UPCEA at both the regional and national levels.” VandenAvond was credited for presenting widely at UPCEA conferences and serving as central region chairman for two years. He continues to serve as a moderator and presenter, and recruits presenters for the central region and national conferences. The award’s namesake, John L. Christopher, was a lifetime member of UPCEA and served in many leadership roles in the former Great Plains region.