University News

Klems Retirement Reception Set for April 12

March 29, 2012

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MACOMB, IL – A retirement reception for Western Illinois University Computer Science Instructor Martha Klems will be held Thursday, April 12.

The reception will be held from 3:30 – 5 p.m. in the University Union Lamoine Room

After 32 years of teaching, Klems will retire at the end of the spring semester. She began teaching at WIU in August 1980, in the math department, moving to the computer science department in 1983. Klems was appointed interim director of the Women's Center in 1994 and served until June 1995.

While at Western, Klems has been an active member of the Feminist Action Alliance, Western Organization for Women (WOW), University Women and the Women's Center Advisory Board. She received a WOW Achievement Award in 1995 and was featured in the "Women of Western Centennial Photographic Exhibit," which honored contributions of women to WIU.

She received the 2007 Affirmative Action Director's Award for her contributions to the University and the community.

Klems also served on the University Professionals International executive board and on the UPI negotiating team for over 20 years.

Outside of her career at Western, Klems served as a member of the Macomb School Board from 2003 – 2011, serving on the board's finance and insurance committees. She was also a member of the Macomb Feminist Network and Macomb Feminist Reading Group.

Prior to coming to WIU, Klems was an instructor of computer science and electrical engineering the University of Connecticut from 1979-1980.

Klems received her bachelor's degree in math in 1973 from the University of Cincinnati, her master's degree in math from Penn State and took her graduate coursework in computer science at Penn State and at the University of Connecticut.

The computer science department is accepting scholarship donations in Klems' name, which can be made at

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