C.J. Peterson, Jr. Memorial Award

The C.J. Peterson, Jr. Award was established in 1973. C.J. Peterson, Jr. was an Employment Counselor in the Sioux Falls Office of the SD Employment Service (Job Service). In 1972, he and his wife were killed in a fire in their home shortly after Christmas. C.J.'s father was a long time employee of the SD Employment Service, having served as manager of the Hot Springs and the Rapid City offices. C.J. had a long time commitment to career development and was very concerned with working with people to maximize their potential and to select occupations which were appropriate and right for each individual. He was very interested in helping to establish an Employment Counseling organization and spoke often about the fact that he felt that Employment Counselors must be a part of the South Dakota Counseling Association (formerly the SD Personnel and Guidance Association)

This award was established to recognized counselors who provide outstanding employment counseling, not necessarily just in Employment offices, but to those who deal with the field of employment- vocational rehabilitation counselors, career learning center counselors, or others who assist people in choosing careers. 

These winners have demonstrated a commitment to enhancing career possibilities of his/her clients. 

2023 Award Winner: Michael Hauge, pictured with Brian Dannen, Cindy Goehring, and Duane Kavanaugh


Mike began his career working with troubled youth and once told me he believed "if these kids had more opportunities to be productive contributors to society, I believe they could overcome what society has convinced them they can't do." He specifically meant in the areas of work, education, and community involvement. At that time, he was still in college working on his Bachelor's Degree in Sociology. This is one of the reasons he went on to get his Master's Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling and completed certification through the Department of Human Services. Early in his career, Mike traveled to the far northeastern part of the state working with SPMI (Severely and Persistently Mentally Ill) adults in the Sisseton-Wahpeton-Oyate Region. He is well known by his colleagues as one of the best in state working with the SPMI population, specifically for his ability to connect with them and honor their career dreams and desires despite their severe mental health challenges. He quickly rose to the position of Senior Rehabilitation Counselor. Just over five years ago, Mike decided he wanted to travel less in order to be closer to his family and he also had a strong desire to go back to his roots working with youth. He is now working in the Aberdeen School District with High-Risk youth, helping them achieve their work and career
goals and dreams. -Cindy Goehring


Past Award Winners

  • 2023- Michael Hauge
  • 2022- Renae Oines
  • 2021- Andrea Albrecht
  • 2013 - Jodi Sternhagen
  • 2006 - Glenda Nedved
  • 2005 - Tami Haug-Davis
  • 2003 - Jan Jirouch
  • 2001 - Ruth Harper
  • 2000 - Jane Kono
  • 1999 - Kevin Blum
  • 1998 - Kelly Duncan