|| List of Scholarships
The Florence Jessen Memorial Scholarship
Florence Leach (Jessen) was born on September 25, 1909, in Portland, Oregon, to a prominent businessman, Joseph Leach. Graduating from Jefferson High School in 1928, and enrolled in business college and worked for several years as a bookkeeper in downtown Portland.
She loved music, and dancing, passions she enjoyed all of her 89 years. In 1933, she married her first sweet heart, Dick Welch. They both loved to hunt and fish, and the lifestyle of the Gorge called to them. They ultimately relocated to Stevenson, Washington and built their home on what is now Rock Creek Drive, overlooking the Columbia River.
After her first husband died, she remarried Halley Jessen. They were known to travel, and had been all over the world. Florence’s love of education and the broader world beyond Stevenson would certainly play into her decision, later in life, to help young people with their continuing education.
As Florence got older, her interests were more focused in her home and the quiet lifestyle she so enjoyed in Stevenson. Each morning, she watched and listened to the flocks of Canada geese swarm and alights on the water across from her home. She could listen to the children playing in the park across the street at midday. She often thought about the future, and what her rural community needed most.
By the time Florence Jessen passed away in July, 1998, she had done the necessary planning to assure her estate would help students in her own community receive scholarship for their post-secondary education. She left her entire estate to the Community Foundation and asked that they establish a permanent scholarship fund for graduating seniors of Stevenson High School who wanted to further their education. She trusted them to do the rest, on her behalf. Her gift was valued at over $1 million.
The Joan of Arc Scholarship
The Joan of Arc Scholarship was established in 2007 to assist high school graduates in continuing their education. Joan of Arc Mason was born in 1914 in Bellaire, Ohio, but lived most of her life in Skamania County, Washington. She was a woman with strong opinions and had an equally strong love for all outdoor creatures and for nature. Joan is remembered as a person with a great sense of human, a love of dance and music, and was very proud to be an American. She was a tireless volunteer in her community, never refusing to help someone in need. Joan of Arc Mason passed away in June, 2005.
Joan did not have children of her own, but she believed in the ‘promise of young people.’ Her hope was that as you continue your education and explore your own world, that you give back to your community, as she did, in your own unique way.
The Angela Svendsen Memorial Scholarship
Angela Svendsen was born in Bellevue, Washington on January 28, 1976. At the age of three, Angela began studying the violin at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. Angela grew up in Wenatchee, Washington and earned a Bachelor’s degree in String Performance from Central Washington University in June 1998. Upon graduation she moved to Vancouver, Washington and began teaching private violin lessons and playing the violin professionally. Angela was killed in a collision with a drunk driver on February 11, 2007. She was 31 years old.
Angela felt that music and education enriched her life and gave her many opportunities for happiness and fulfillment that she might not otherwise have had. Angela’s passion in life was passing her love of music to her students and the audiences for which she performed. If awarded this scholarship, it is our hope that you would have a chance to further your love of music and life and thereby enrich the world around you.
The Angela Svendsen Memorial Music Scholarship was established in 2007 to assist a graduating high school senior from a Clark County high school in attending an accredited college or university to pursue a degree in music education or music performance. This scholarship is in her memory.
The Harriett and Lawrence Wheeler Scholarship
Harriett and Lawrence (Larry) Wheeler met in the late 1940’s in Hermosa Beach, California, wed in 1950 and moved to Del Norte County, CA, where they lived for over 40 years. Larry retired from Simonson Lumber Company after more than 20 years. After raising their family, Harriett worked at Redwood Elementary for three years, then for ten years as a librarian at Del Norte High School, where each of her five children graduated from. They subsequently moved to Borrego Springs, CA, where Harriett was a docent and volunteer naturalist for Anza-Borrego Desert State Park in San Diego County. She was awarded the Medal of Superior Achievement from the State of California Department of Parks and Recreation for her exceptional service.
Harriett and Larry currently live in Clark County, WA, where they enjoy views of the Columbia River and Mt. Hood. They have always had a strong belief in the importance of education and life-long learning. That belief will continue well into the future through the scholarship fund they established to assist graduates of Del Norte High School.
List of Scholarships