History of the Dr. Lou and Mae Lukenda Alumni House
Lake Superior State University named the building which houses its Alumni Relations department and LSSU Foundation offices after longtime friends of the University, Dr. Louis and Mae Lukenda of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. The dedication took place on May 4, 2001, outside the building, which is located on the northeast corner of campus. Many friends and family members attended, along with LSSU students, alumni and staff. “We are truly honored to dedicate this building to Lou and Mae,” said LSSU President Robert Arbuckle. “He is one of the best friends of the University, and we know that LSSU has always held a special place in his heart.”
Dr. Lou Lukenda attended LSSU from 1948-50 before heading to dental school in Toronto. He retired from his Sault, Ont., dental practice in 1990, to become chairman and CEO of Tendercare Michigan, a Michigan-based health care company. He also served as president of Tendercare Nursing Homes-Indiana and Tendercare Nursing Homes Ltd., until his final retirement in 2007. He received LSSU’s Outstanding Alumnus Award in 1983. He served on the LSSU Foundation board of directors since its establishment and was instrumental in securing the future of LSSU through his advocacy.
Mae Lukenda served the twin Sault’s in many community organizations and projects. She served on the Sault Ste. Marie Area Community Foundation’s board of directors and is the mother of seven children.
During the dedication, Lou spoke fondly of his days as a student at LSSU, remembering how he came across the St. Mary’s River in the pedestrian ferry that once served the two communities. Dr. Lukenda passed away May 4, 2017.