2019 ASSOCIATION NEWS
OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD SHOEBOXES
The RCRTA's community service project for 2019 will be Operation Christmas Child. Vonda Miller came to our April meeting and talked to us about this project. We will be collecting items for the shoeboxes at our July and October meetings. Boxes will be there for the items collected. We will also be collecting a free will offering at both of these meetings that will be used to buy additional items and help pay the postage for our boxes. You may bring your items to the meetings, make a free will donation, or if you would like, fill a shoebox of your own. I have purchased boxes and will bring them to the July meeting. Boxes made and brought to the meetings need to be labeled for Girl or Boy and ages 2-4, 5-9, and 10-14. Before school starts is always a good time to get school supplies super cheap. Dollar Tree also is a good place to shop for items. If you are uncertain about what item to include a complete list can be found on the Internet at Samaritan's Purse/ Operation Christmas Child.
Do Not include the following in your shoeboxes: Candy, toothpaste, gum, used or damaged items, war related items such as toy guns, knives, or military figures, chocolate or food, seeds, fruit rolls, or other fruit snacks, drink mixes (powdered or liquid), medications or vitamins, breakable items such as snow globes or glass containers, aerosol cans.
Bonnie Wall taught in the Jac-Cen-Del School Corporation for 37 years. During that time, she taught 4th grade, Special Education at all levels (K-12) and worked in many inclusion classrooms.
Bonnie first learned about
RCRTA MEMBERS HONORED FOR VOLUNTEER SERVICE
Several members of the Ripley County Retired Teachers
Association were honored for their service to their communities in
Jerry volunteered 2105 hours in 2018, 50 hours being with
youth. Jerry’s volunteer hours included work through the Lions Club, Relay for
Life, Mainstreet Versailles, Ripley County Bicentennial Committee, Indiana
Receiving Honorable Mention Volunteer Awards were Donna
Harrelson, Sharon Martin, and Mary Weber.
Congratulations to all of these individuals and “Thank you” for your
2018 ASSOCIATION NEWS
BARBARA DUNKER HONORED AT RCRTA MEETING
Barbara Dunker, a former Milan guidance counselor, was honored by the RCRTA. Andrea Westerfeld presented Dunker a certificate of appreciation. Dunker then spoke about her teaching experiences in many different schools and many different grade levels before becoming a counselor and retiring from Milan High School.
RIPLEY COUNTY RECEIVES STATE HONORS
Ripley County Retired Teachers Association returned home from the Indiana Retired Teachers Association’s Representative Assembly on June 13, 2018, proud of the honor their local received. Lois Luken, RCRTA Public Relation’s chair received honor for Outstanding News Releases and Outstanding Newsletter. Dennis Bourquein, RCRTA Webmaster, received Outstanding Website recognition. Ripley County was one or two counties receiving outstanding recognition in all three Public Relations areas.
ELLEN MULFORD TO SERVE ON STATE FOUNDATION
Ellen Mulford was requested by IRTA President, Jane Boultinghouse, this year to become a member of the Indiana Retired Teachers Foundation Board of Directors. Ellen accepted this position and is now serving as Treasurer of the Foundation. The Board is composed of five voting members and two ex-officio members. It is a great honor for Ripley County to have a member serving of this Board. We wish her much success in this position and are proud to have her serving is this capacity.
SOUTH RIPLEY TEACHERS
Congratulations to South Ripley Kindergarten teacher Tammy Halcomb and First Grade teacher Caroline Cumberworth for winning the two IRTA Area 10 Teacher Grant Awards. This is the first time that one school corporation was awarded both grants.
Two $500 Teacher Grant Awards are presented in each of the ten IRTA areas each year by the Indiana Retired Teachers Foundation. The award recipients are chosen by a committee chosen by the Area 10 Director. The committee members are not aware of the teachers’ names or schools during the selection.
At the October meeting of the Ripley County Retired Teachers Association (RCRTA), Dennis and Betty Bourquein were honored by the Association for their leadership and dedication in the Association.
Dennis Bourquein, while serving as Area 8 Director of the Indiana Retired Teachers Association revived the Ripley County Retired Teachers Association by helping to assemble new officers for the local association. Dennis has also served as webmaster of the Association and will be the new Public Relations Chair in 2019. He also has served as the President of the Indiana Retired Teachers Association.
Betty Bourquein assumed the office of Secretary of the newly re-organized Ripley County Retired Teachers Association in 2006 and continued to serve in that position for twelve years. In addition to her service to the Ripley County Retired Teacher, she also served as the Public Relations Committee Chair for the Indiana Retired Teachers Association for nine years.
2017 ASSOCIATION NEWS
Members of the Ripley County Retired Teachers Association returned home from the Indiana Retired Teachers Association’s Representative Assembly on June 14, 2017, proud of the honor their local received. Lois Luken, RCRTA Public Relation’s chair received honor for Outstanding News Releases and Outstanding Newsletter. Dennis Bourquein, RCRTA Webmaster, received Honorable Mention for the local’s website. Also, receiving the award for Outstanding Volunteer Award was member Louella Voegele. Congratulations to all!
Picture: Louella Voegele
Each year the Ripley County Retired Teachers assist in the local schools with reading to the elementary school students for Library Week. Pictured below is RCRTA member Lois Luken reading to one of the classes at the Batesville Primary School.
RCRTA ASSIST LIONS’ CLUB WITH VISION SCREENING
One of the yearly activities of the Ripley County Retired Teachers Association is assisting the Lions’ Club with its vision screening program in Ripley and surrounding counties. A number of retirees assist with this program. Below is a group from one of the screenings.
Left to right: Jim Powell, Lois Luken, Shirley Bocock (retired teacher and Lions’ Club Vision Screening Coordinator),
Betty Bourquein, Jan Westerfeld, Andrea Westerfeld, and Dennis Westerfeld
RCRTA PROVIDES SCHOOL NURSE SUPPORT
The Ripley Country Retired Teachers voted to supply every nurse in the Ripley County schools with $50 dollars to help them purchase the supplies needed for their service to the children of our county. Pictured below is RCRTA Treasurer, Dennis Westerfeld, presenting Milan’s Elementary Nurse, Tammy Jutzi with her $50 check.
2016 ASSOCIATION NEWS
On February 23, 2016, nine members of the Ripley County Retired Teachers Association attended the Indiana Retired Teachers Association Legislative Brunch held in the North Rotunda of the Indiana Statehouse. The purpose of the Brunch is to talk with the local state legislators about issues of concern for retired teachers. During the Brunch Senator Jean Leising attend to talk with her constituents. Senator Leising has been a strong supporter of retired teacher issues.
Pictured from left to right: Dennis Bourquein IRTA President, Betty Bourquein RCRTA Secretary,
Senator Jean Leising, Cheryl Parmer, Shirley Bocock, Ralph Hostetler, Andrea Westerfeld RCRTA President,
Dennis Westerfeld, Lois Luken IRTA Area 10 Director, Steve Mills
2015 ASSOCIATION NEWS
September 9, 2015, the RCRTA has a planned outing to the LaComedia Theatre at Springboro, Ohio, to see The Church Basement Ladies “Last Potluck” Supper. The cost is $33.00 per person and reservations can be made by calling Lois Luken at 812-933-1590. The production is a matinee with door opening at 10:30 a.m. Deadline for payment is July 28.
VISION SCREENING - Each year during the Fall months, the Ripley County Retired Teachers assist the Lions Club with vision screening the elementary students of Ripley, Franklin, Dearborn, and Decatur counties. Anyone who would like to be a part of this project should contact Andrea Westerfeld for information about a half day training session. You can also choose the schools you wish to assist. There is a need for many volunteers.
THINK SMART, STAY
2015 OUTSTANDING VOLUNTEER HONORED
L-R: Jean Deamron presents Lou Voegele the Outstanding Volunteer Award.
Lou Voegele, a dedicated volunteer and member of the Ripley County Retired Teachers Association, was honored at the 2015 Indiana Retired Teachers’ Representative Assembly for her volunteer service to her community. Her volunteer service include working at the local hospital sorting and delivering mail, working in six different school with the Reality Check program, assisting the Batesville Historical Society with fund raising programs, assisting with meals for special programs sponsored by the Knights of St. John, working with Relay for Life and the Think Pink Cancer program, service to her church, and various other programs in the community. Lou is a cancer survivor and as a way of showing appreciation to her Lord and Savior, she serves as a mentor to cancer patients at the Hansen Center.
HONORABLE MENTION VOLUNTEERS
Donna Harrelson contributed 994 volunteer hours. Donna works with first grade students for reading and other projects. She helps first grade teachers with tasks they need done. She also visits a local health care facility, visits with the residents and helps them with a craft or crocheting projects.
Betty Bourquein gave 903 hours toward volunteer service. She volunteers for our state IRTA, Ripley and Dearborn Counties locals, the Dearborn County Retired Teachers Foundation, her church, the Council for Educational Travel USA (foreign exchange students), and the Think Smart/Stay Safe program which stresses ways to stay safe from danger to fourth and fifth grades students.
Patsy Holdsworth volunteered a total of 866 hours. Patsy spends numerous hours for her church, Tri Kappa, and Versailles Lions Club. She also spends many hours playing the piano for various school and community activities.
Dennis Bourquein, an active member of Ripley and Dearborn County Retired Teachers Associations, became the new Indiana Retired Teachers Association President on July 1, 2015. He served as IRTA Area 8 Director from 2006-2010, IRTA Secretary-Treasurer from 2011-2013, President-elect from 2013-2015, a member of the state Membership Committee for two years, a member of the state Public Relations Committee for four years, and chair of the state Legislative Committee for two years. Dennis retired from teaching in 1999 after having taught music for 33 years; six years for Batesville and twenty-seven years for Sunman-Dearborn Community Schools.
A member of Dearborn and Ripley County RTA’s, Bourquein served as President of the Dearborn County RTA for six years and Public Relations Chair for Ripley County for nine years. He currently serves as webmaster for Dearborn and Ripley County RTA’s.
A TOTAL OF 18,345 VOLUNTEER HOURS WERE REPORTED BY RIPLEY COUNTY RETIRED TEACHERS TO THE INDIANA RETIRED TEACHERS ASSOCIATION FOR 2014!
At the October 2014 Indiana Retired Teachers’ Association Board of Directors meeting, Tom Mellish was selected as the new Executive Director of the Indiana Retired Teachers Association. He replaced Nancy Tolson, who retired after serving the IRTA for two years as Executive Director, eights years as an elected officer, and four years as an Area Director. Mellish began his employment in January 2015.
Mellish has served as the principal of the Sugar Creek Elementary School in Crawfordsville for the past 22 years. He will be leaving after 35 years in education. He has been active in the Crawfordsville Kiwanis and the Indiana Association of School Principals. Mellish was name National Distinguished Principal of the Year in 1996.
Last revision: March 15, 2019