NMSU business college to honor four at Hall of Fame 2001 ceremony

April 9, 2001 by Jack King NMSU News Center

New Mexico State University’s College of Business Administration and Economics will induct four distinguished alumni into its Hall of Fame Saturday, April 21.

The honorees are retired Lt. Gen. Robert D. Chelberg; Hugh F. Barham, a businessman and co-owner of a national restaurant chain; Michael P. “Mickey” Clute, president of GenCon Corp., a major New Mexico contractor; and Kevin Johnson, vice president of U. S. sales and service for Microsoft.

The ceremony will take place at 6:30 p.m. at Las Cruces’ Best Western Mesilla Valley Inn. Information on ticket availability, as well as other information on the ceremony, can be obtained by calling the NMSU College of Business and Economics at (505) 646-2821.

Chelberg, who earned a master’s of business administration degree from NMSU in 1974, has held positions of increasing responsibility in the U. S. Army during a 32-year career.

He has served as executive to the Supreme Allied Command Europe, then as chief of the Policy and Programs branch in the Supreme Headquarters of Allied Powers Europe. In 1990, he was assigned to work as special adviser to the NATO secretary general for verification and implementation of the Conventional Forces Europe Arms Control Treaty. Promoted to lieutenant general in 1991, he served as chief of staff of the U.S. European Command in Stuttgart, Germany.

After retiring in 1993, Chelberg worked as the deputy director of the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies, developed to teach democratic and free-market principles to students from the former Warsaw Pact countries.

Barham entered NMSU — at that time the New Mexico College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts — in 1937 while serving in the Civilian Conservation Corps, a federal program that put hundreds of young men to work during the Great Depression. After graduating in 1942, he attended U.S. Army Officer Candidate School at Fort Benning, Ga., then served in the World War II Aleutian campaign and, later, in Europe, Korea and Vietnam, retiring as a major in 1966.

Along with several other business endeavors, Barham and his brother, Dave, started a fast service restaurant chain called “Hot Dog On A Stick,” which has since grown to 150 units worldwide.

Barham’s service to NMSU includes membership in the Hiram Hadley Society, the Mil Gracias Society, the Friends of the Museum and the President’s Associates. He was recognized in 1988 as one of NMSU’s Centennial Outstanding Alumni. He also has established three endowed scholarships for NMSU business students.

Clute received a bachelor of arts in business administration from NMSU in 1968. After serving in the Army from 1968 to 1970, and receiving a Bronze Star for actions in Vietnam, he was a professional golfer and NMSU assistant coach from 1971 to 1975. In 1976 he began work as a general contractor. He became president of GenCon in 1977.

Clute has been active in the Aggie Sports Association and served terms as president of the NMSU Foundation and as chairman of the President’s Associates. He and his wife established the Jan and Mickey Clute President’s Associates Endowed Scholarship. He also is a member of the Business Council of the College of Business Administration and Economics and was the college’s 1986 Distinguished Alumnus.

Johnson graduated from NMSU in 1981 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, with a major in business systems analysis. He worked for six years as an applications developer and systems programmer in the petroleum and financial services industries, then joined IBM in 1987. He led the sales and marketing of IBM’s systems integration and professional services in the Dallas, Texas, area and was practice manager in IBM Consulting. He joined Microsoft in 1992 and was vice president of Microsoft’s product support Services organization before becoming vice president of Microsoft’s U.S. sales and service organization, where he is responsible for the corporation’s commercial business in the United States.

Johnson also sits on the board of directors of NPower, a non-profit organization that delivers technology services to other non-profit organizations.

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