Special to The Sun
Each year, friends and alumni gather for Dakota Wesleyan University’s annual Legacy Banquet — a time for the university to thank and recognize those who have given back to the college and their communities.
Receiving distinguished alumni awards this year are Alan ‘80 and Debra ‘78 (Bartelt) Nagel for the College of Arts and Humanities; Cody ‘00 and Jennifer ‘01 (Wahle) Hoefert for the Donna Starr Christen College of Healthcare, Fitness and Sciences; and Ardith Miller ‘50 for the College of Leadership and Public Service.
Alan and Debra Nagel of Edmond will receive the Distinguished Alumni Award from the College of Arts and Humanities.
Alan Nagel began his career as an insurance claim adjuster while still enrolled at DWU and following graduation in 1980, he opened a branch office for Crocker Claims Service Company in Denver. He and his wife, Debra, started AmeriClaim, which they ran until January of this year. In 2007 he entered seminary and graduated from St. Paul School of Theology at Oklahoma City University in 2012. He is currently forming a nonprofit organization to assist disadvantaged individuals, helping them to develop successful businesses and obtain financial independence. He uses Christian teachings and ethics to help people find solutions to their business challenges. Alan is currently a United Methodist pastor serving in Crescent.
Debra Nagel graduated from DWU in 1978 with her associate’s degree in nursing and began her career at Sioux Valley Hospital and later worked at St. Joseph Hospital, now Avera Queen of Peace, in Mitchell. She later acquired both her Bachelor of Science degree in nursing and Certified Rehab Registered Nurse designation and then her Certified Insurance Rehab Nurse designation, working first in the neonatal intensive care unit at University Hospital and Presbyterian Hospitals in Denver, and later as regional case manager for CIGNA Worker’s Compensation. She was designated as one of 10 RN specialist/medical case manager consultants to the U.S. Postal Service reporting to the U.S. Surgeon General. Debra eventually decided to blend her medical and insurance knowledge as a medical malpractice defense investigator for 10 hospitals in Colorado and Kansas. Upon moving to Oklahoma City in 2000, she joined her husband as the CFO, and is currently the CEO of AmeriTask, which since the sale of AmeriClaim, continues to provide technical expertise to the National Flood Insurance Program.
The Nagels have been faithful supporters of DWU, and along with Alan’s siblings, have established the Owen and Wanita Nagel Endowed Scholarship in honor of their parents.