The award recognizing the best technical paper by a Western District member published in the ITE Journal each year had been named the Wayne T. VanWagoner Award, in honor of the managing editor of WesternITE who was killed in a traffic crash in Utah in 1985. Upon his death, his widow Patricia, who had been leading the production of the bi-monthly newsletter out of the Wayne T. VanWagoner & Associates office in Salt Lake City for several years, became the Managing Editor. WesternITE was published six times a year with high-quality technical articles, District news, section reports, positions available advertisements, and annual meeting announcements. Text was set by hand, photographs were cut-and-pasted, and 3500 copies were issued by mail for each edition. This was in the days prior to personal word processing software, e-mail, digital transmission, and inexpensive long distance calls. She diligently attended every District board meeting, while running the Van Wagoner consulting firm. In the summer of 1989, she retired and moved to New England.
To honor her years of dedication and service to ITE, the Western District Board has renamed the award the Wayne T. and Patricia VanWagoner Award. Nazir Lalani, District President in 1989 and International President in 1999, talked to Patricia VanWagoner recently. He says “She is well and enjoying living in New Hampshire. It was nice to hear her say how touched she was that the District still remembered her contributions to ITE as WesternITE Editor.”