Mitch Lentz
Mitch Lentz
Spring Valley farmer, IBM manager and former Kingsland School Board of Directors chairman Mitch Lentz is the 2013 Wall of Honor inductee.

Lentz will be recognized during a ceremony held in the Kingsland High School Kingsland Café' this Friday, Sept. 27, at 6 p.m. during homecoming activities.

In order to be nominated for consideration, a Wall of Honor nominee must be a Kingsland, Spring Valley or Wykoff high school graduate, have graduated at least 10 years prior to nomination, and have attained a high level of achievement in his or her personal or professional life, contributed to the community or demonstrated that education is a lifelong experience. The recognition may be bestowed upon individuals posthumously, and the nomination process is open to anyone regardless of race, creed, religion, sex, national origin, disability, economic or marital status, according to the nomination application issued by the association.

Lentz was an athlete and student leader in high school at Spring Valley High School, competing in the state track meet for three consecutive years and becoming runner up at the state wrestling tournament.

"His education is exemplary and he has an undergraduate degree as well as a master's degree. He has had a distinguished career at IBM, he is a husband, father and grandfather and serves as a role model to all in his family. He has tirelessly worked for the betterment of the Kingsland school district. He continues to work with the Spring Valley Area Community Foundation for the betterment of the communities in the surrounding area," stated the recommendation for his nomination. "He works with the local athletic booster organization, and besides doing all this, he manages other volunteer activities and runs the family farm. It is with his sometimes brusque but more often humble, quiet leadership that he works behind the scenes to get things done for the betterment of the community."

His community achievements and awards include the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) Outstanding Leadership Award, Minnesota Quality Council member, member of the Spring Valley and Kingsland school boards, member and founder of the Spring Valley Area Community Foundation and a member of the Kingsland Athletic Booster Club. Lentz has also been: a three-time member of the Kingsland School Board of Directors serving as chairman at least twice; serving on the Southeast Service Cooperative for two terms, including as chairman of the board; MSHSL delegate and Section 1A representative; member of the Spring Valley Township zoning committee, the Rochester Chamber of Commerce and the Olmsted County Agribusiness committee; a 4-H shooting sports instructor and firearms trainer; head of the Minnesota Junior Heifer Classic; and IBM's EMT for 10 years.

In his career at IBM, Lentz has received the IBM Corporate Management Award for outstanding personal management practices twice, the Outstanding Technical Leadership Award four times, the Excellence Award six times, is an On Demand Volunteer, has been recognized with the Distinguished Contribution Award six times, received certificates of recognition for leadership in IBM certifications, received a certificate of commendation from the office of former governor Tim Pawlenty for contributions to manufacturing in Minnesota, has earned more than 10 Technical Plateau Awards for the development of new products and technical solutions for customers, and also earned awards for Rochester IBM's site management.

The public is invited to join the Kingsland administration, board and staff in honoring Lentz this Friday at 6 p.m. for his dedication to the district, and also to enjoy a community spaghetti dinner starting at 5:30 p.m. preceding the Wall of Honor celebration. For more information, call the Kingsland district office at (507) 346-7276.