The Wisconsin Association For Language Teachers presented Mark Tyler with their Anthony J. Gradisnik Award during their Fall Conference. The award may be conferred on an individual or group especially from outside the world language teaching profession who shares Mr. Gradisnik’s enthusiasm and advocacy for language education in such areas as international education, early language learning, and creative initiatives in language education.
Pam Delfosse, a consultant for International Education and World Languages with Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, nominated Mark for the award. In her nomination she sited Mark’s work with the Wisconsin Language Roadmap and the River Falls Chinese Language Program.
During an educational and trade delegation to Heilongjiang Province in 2017, Tyler, a University of Wisconsin Regent, negotiated and signed an agreement between the University of Wisconsin and Heilongjiang Province’s Department of Education. In 2019, a similar agreement was signed with the Wisconsin Technical College System. Mark has served as a WTCS Board Member since 2007.
Mark said, “OEM Fabricators and our Team Members have benefitted tremendously from our international relationships, understanding and working internationally is becoming more and more important in business, and as a result, education must prepare students to be culturally competent, and comfortable with world languages.”
About OEM Fabricators, Inc. and Mark Tyler
OEM Fabricators Inc, is a contract manufacturer with three Wisconsin locations in Woodville, Neillsville, and Phillips Wisconsin. Since 1986, OEM Fabricators has provided its services to original equipment manufacturers. OEM Fabricators, Inc. support of the Wisconsin Language Roadmap and River Falls Chinese Language Program is rooted in the need for cultural and language competencies in business. Mark Tyler, Founder and Chairman of the Board, grew OEM Fabricators Inc. into an internationally recognized contract manufacturer. Mark has served on numerous boards, including the UW-Board of Regents, The Wisconsin Technical College System Board, the Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce Board, The Governor’s Early Childhood Advisory Council, and chairs the Governor’s Council on Workforce Investment. Locally, Mark has also served on many boards and councils and is the incoming president of the Family Resource Center St Croix Valley Board, and is the founder and lead volunteer for Family Friendly Workplaces, Inc., a 501C3 nonprofit.
About Wisconsin Language Roadmap and the River Falls Chinese Language Program
The River Falls Chinese Language Program is a pilot program, developed through the Wisconsin Language Roadmap, which brings the opportunity for elementary students to learn basic Mandarin Chinese through teachers from the Heilongjiang Providence who are fluent in Chinese and English. The teachers are placed in elementary classrooms to teach components of Chinese and expose students to Chinese culture , art, music, and history. The Wisconsin Language Roadmap is an initiative to enhance economic competitiveness of the State of Wisconsin and meet the language and cultural demands of Wisconsin’s workforce and communities by strengthening world language education in the state.