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Clarkens named 2013 ELC Champions in Education

October 26, 2013
By Michael Tidemann - Staff Writer , Estherville News
The 2013 Champion in Education award Saturday night went — quite appropriately — to Mike and Edith Clarken, who have tirelessly volunteered for countless community causes in Estherville. The Clarkens received the award at the annual ELC School Foundation banquet at Estherville Golf Course. “We love Estherville,” Edith said in receiving the award, Mike adding that they have always had support in whatever cause they take on. Edith is president of the Estherville Garden Club, serves on the Excel Estherville Beautification Committee, is past president of the Iowa Great Lakes Board of Realtors and continues to serve on that board, is Rotary secretary, PEO secretary, serves on the Avera Holy Family Foundation and was a founding member of the ELC Education Foundation. Mike was a Boy Scouting volunteer for many years and holds the rank of Silver Beaver, the highest possible, and continues to serve on the Mid-America Council Board of Trustees. He was named 2011 Realtor of the Year by the Iowa Great Lakes Board of Realtors and is a member of the Emmet County Fair Founders Board. For 33 years he has emceed the Graettinger Labor Day parade and has also emceed the Sweet Corn Days parade since its inception. For the past four years Mike and Steve Erickson have done trail restoration in Wabakimi Park in Ontario, Canada, mapping and designating the trail. He has participated in the Woody’s Charities auction for the past 26 years and has set up the Fourth of July flight breakfast for 35 years. He has also volunteered his auctioneering services at countless fundraising events — including the Foundation banquet Saturday night. Both Clarkens are Rotary International Paul Harris Fellows. Molly Jo Anderson heaped accolades on the Clarkens in her introduction, offering hints until everyone guessed the honorees. Anderson also unveiled the new ELC Education Foundation motto and logo, Emerging Learners in The Classroom. She said the Foundation sponsored Key Grants in which teachers and staff may elect for a payroll deduction which the foundation matches to buy items for their classrooms that the school district budget would not otherwise allow, with the ultimate goal of helping teachers further enhance student education. Anderson said the Foundation also gives scholarships to the valedictorian, salutatorian and four $500 scholarship winners.

Article Photos

Molly Jo Anderson introduced the 2013 Champion in Education, Mike and Edith Clarken.
Photo by Michael Tidemann



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