Faces: Service notes, learning notes and a community leader

Master Gunnery Sergeant Ryan R. Glau retires and other news.

Service notes

Master Gunnery Sergeant Ryan R. Glau

On April 28, 2021, the Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Marine Corps Detachment held a retirement ceremony for Master Gunnery Sergeant Ryan R. Glau at the EOD Memorial wall, marking the close of a 24-year career of service in the United States Marine Corps. At the ceremony, he was awarded the Defense Meritorious Service Medal. The citation included recognition of his "exceptional leadership, extensive military knowledge, and untiring dedication to duty." The Marine Corps Detachment presented Glau with a United States Flag flown over the Joint Service EOD memorial. In a letter presented at the ceremony, President Donald J. Trump extended his personal thanks and appreciation for Master Gunnery Sergeant Glau’s honorable service to the country.

Master Gunnery Sgt. Glau, whose official retirement date is July 31, 2021, was raised in Bayfield County, Wisconsin. He enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1997, at the age of 18. Following the successful completion of basic training he was assigned to Helicopter Marine Light Attack Squadron-169 on Camp Pendleton, California, as an Aviation Ordnance Technician.

In September 2001, Glau was deployed aboard ship with the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit near Australia. Following the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, he participated in the invasion of Afghanistan. During his time in Afghanistan, Glau was given the opportunity to assist EOD Marines with the destruction of missiles from a crashed helicopter and he requested to join this elite unit.


Upon completion of his tour with the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit in 2002, Glau was ordered to report to Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Eglin AFB, FL, for training in the Basic EOD course, a school that has a notoriously high attrition rate and allows for no mistakes. In April 2003, Glau graduated from the EOD Basic course with six original students from his class, the other 30 students had not made it to graduation.

Following his graduation from EOD School, Glau reported to 1st EOD platoon, Camp Pendleton, California. From 2003-2006, he deployed multiple times in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and was tasked with the most dangerous job in the military, locating and de-arming Improvised Explosive Devices, enemy weapons caches, and unexploded ordnance items. During this period, he was promoted to the rank of Staff Sergeant.

In 2006, Glau received orders to the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar EOD Team. He provided EOD support to the United States Secret Service during protective missions of the President, Vice President, First Lady, and Pope Benedict XVI. He was promoted to the rank of Gunnery Sergeant before transferring back to Camp Pendleton in 2009.

From 2009-2013, Glau deployed frequently to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, where he was again tasked with locating and de-arming IEDs, destroying weapons caches, unexploded ordnance, and narcotics. While embedded with the Georgian military he was personally awarded the Georgian peacekeeping operations medal by President Mikheil Saakashvili. During this time, he was promoted to the rank of Master Sergeant.

From 2014-2017 Glau participated in missions with the Secret Service, recovered remains of World War II heroes from the Solomon Islands, and deployed once again to Iraq, Jordan, and Kuwait in support of operations against the Islamic State.

In 2018, Glau was promoted to the Rank of Master Gunnery Sergeant at his final duty station, Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal, where he held the billet of Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Marine Corps Detachment until his retirement.

Glau’s personal decorations include the Bronze Star Medal with Valor Device, Defense Meritorious Service Medal (Second Award), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (fourth award) with Valor Device, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and the Combat Action Ribbon (second award).

Glau’s father, Robert, resides in Herbster, Wisconsin, and his mother, Suzanne, lives in Superior. He plans to move back to Wisconsin with his girlfriend, Molly, following his retirement.


Learning notes

Kate Batten

The Dorothy Molter Museum announced that Ely resident, Kate Batten, is this year’s recipient of its annual Wilderness First Responders Scholarship, which is awarded to residents of Northeastern Minnesota pursuing a degree or continuing education in a medical field. The scholarship was established by the Dorothy Molter Museum to honor Dorothy Molter’s legacy of serving thousands of visitors who came to her for medical care during their wilderness trips in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Scholarship applications are available at .

Amber Heidenreich


Amber Heidenreich served as student speaker for the University of Wisconsin-Superior’s commencement. on May 15. Heidenreich is a bachelor of science degree candidate with summa cum laude honors. She is a double-major in political science and legal studies. Heidenreich also received a paralegal certificate and a certificate in ethical leadership upon graduation.

A dedicated student leader, athlete and civic change-maker with a demonstrated commitment to public service, Heidenreich has held several internships, fellowships and student leader positions. She was named the 2020-21 Newman Civic Fellow, a national fellowship designed for students dedicated to change-making. Heidenreich was also a Democracy Fellow with Campus Vote Project. In addition to these fellowships, she was also a Community and Voter Engagement Intern with UW-Superior’s The Link Center, where her voter engagement work helped UW-Superior achieve a Voter Friendly Campus designation. Heidenreich is also a recipient of the 2021 Chancellor’s Leadership Award.

The Phillips, Wisconsin, native also interned with the Duluth DWI Court as a screening, brief intervention and referral to treatment (SBIRT) intervenor for two years, which helped to create a partnership between the SBIRT process and UW-Superior students. A 2017 graduate of Hayward High School, Heidenreich was also a student ambassador for WiSys, a non-profit supporting organization of the UW System. She is also a member of the Pre-Law Society and the president of the Criminal Justice Honor Society.

Active on campus as a member of both the Criminal Justice Honor Society and Pre-Law Society, Heidenreich was also a member of the Yellowjacket track and field team and the hockey team. She has been named the Yellowjacket Women’s Scholar Athlete of the Year and the WIAC Judy Kruckman Women’s Ice Hockey Scholar-Athlete.

Community leader

In 2019, Visit Duluth created the Zenith Spirit Award to acknowledge those who go above and beyond in the hospitality sector. Nominations are submitted by supervisors, which are then evaluated by Visit Duluth Board Members. This year's award was presented to Steve Rankila, Director of Internal Operations at the DECC. Nearing 26 years at the DECC, Rankila has been tasked with operating the venue’s attractions, including the Duluth Omnimax, Lake Superior Tug, and the USCG Cutter Sundew. Most recently, Rankila has managed the William A. Irvin – and captaining the floating museum through COVID-19 was no easy task. Rankila coordinated getting the ship operational for clean, safe, self-guided tours with just seven days notice.

What To Read Next
This week, gardening columnist Don Kinzler fields questions on hibiscus plants, beating apple trees and how long grass seeds will last.
If it plays well in Winnipeg, it’ll be a hit in Fargo, and all points within planting distance.
At the start of each New Year, I do some thinking about what’s coming next in the beer world. I do this to stay ahead on trends, mull over new ideas I like, and plan what I want to focus on.
This week Sarah Nasello modifies a summer favorite into a warm and comforting winter meal.