Trailblazer Hall of Fame
The Kettle Moraine School District proudly honors the accomplishments and humanitarian efforts of former graduates through the Laser Trailblazer Hall of Fame. Nominees (living or deceased) must be a Kettle Moraine graduate of 10 years or more and made, or are making, a significant contribution to the local, state, national or international community in the fields of entertainment, athletics, the arts, community, government or military service, professional endeavors, entrepreneurial or industrial leadership, science or technology, education, research, or humanitarian efforts. Candidates are selected in January and honored during a special ceremony in the spring.
On May 29, 2017, two Kettle Moraine alumni were inducted into the Trailbalzer Hall of Fame. Click here to see pictures from the induction ceremony.
A 2001 graduate of Kettle Moraine High School, Nick Heltemes is a Captain for Lake Country Fire and Rescue in Delafield. He is being honored in the Trailblazer Hall of Fame’s Community/Government/Military Service category.
Captain Heltemes has received numerous recognitions for public service. He was awarded the Medal of Honor of Valor by the Oconomowoc Fire Department and recognized by the Lake Country Fire and Rescue Board for his role in saving a fellow downed firefighter’s life in 2012. In 2013, he participated in the treatment of a young girl involved in a fatal motor vehicle accident, providing lifesaving care until Flight for Life could arrive and transport her for trauma care.
Heltemes goes further than responding to emergencies; he educates students as well. He is an instructor at Waukesha County Technical College, manages the Lake Country Fire and Rescue Training Center in Nashotah and teaches students in KM’s High School of Health Sciences.
“Nick is constantly looking for fun and exciting ways to teach our students about emergency medical services,” said High School of Health Sciences Director Stephen Plum. “The students really benefit from the place-based learning experiences he organizes for them with Lake Country Fire and Rescue. They are learning real-world skills that will serve them well in their future careers and everyday life.”
Heltemes was the Waukesha County Fire Chief’s Association 2015 Fire Officer of the Year, and in 2016 he was recognized as Coordinator by the U.S. Navy for his role in the cooperation of mass casualty and terrorism training. He has a nursing degree from Carroll University, multiple fire and emergency management certifications, and is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Public Administration.
Michael Tully, Class of 1993, is being honored in the Entertainment/Athletics/ Art category. He serves as the Director of Music Ministries at Trinity United Methodist Church in Lincoln, Neb., where he leads the worship band, adult and youth choirs and child care music programs.
Tully began his musical career in Mrs. Mary Anne Zupan’s 3rd grade music class at Wales Elementary, later working under the direction and guidance of Mr. Jaeger, Mrs. Krechel and Mr. Krofta. After graduating from Kettle Moraine, Tully attended Arizona State University where he earned a Bachelor of Music Degree in Voice Performance and a Master of Music Degree in Vocal Pedagogy.
In addition to performing, Tully has served as adjunct professor of music history as well as director of various college music ensembles. He earned his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he and eight other students formed an a cappella group and were named the top all-male singing group in the 2007 International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella.
Tully possesses a wide range of vocal styles including opera, oratorio, art song, jazz, blues, music theatre and world music. His stage experience includes appearances in various opera and music theatre productions in the United States and abroad. He has been featured as a concert soloist with the Prescott Pops Orchestra, Nebraska Chamber Orchestra and Sacramento Philharmonic Orchestra, to name a few; and has received numerous awards and honors for his musical and scholarly achievements.
Mary Anne Zupan shared that throughout Michael’s life, he has demonstrated a commitment to his community, one example being how he introduced opera into Lincoln Public Schools. “Whether serving in his local congregation, his college community, or in his adult life, he is known for his service to others,” she said.