News & Notes: Feb. 7

Feb. 7, 2012

Fund established for family displaced by house fire

Hales Corners - A fund has been established through Associated Bank to help the Allen family, whose Hales Corners home was destroyed by fire during the early morning hours of Feb. 2.

"The community has really stepped up and been so generous with donations of furniture and clothing," said Hales Corners Police Officer Justin Landry, who helped coordinate the Allen family fund. "Right now, the focus is on financial donations."

It is believed a candle may have started the fire that broke out shortly before 5 a.m. in the 11300 block of West Godsell Avenue. Four people living at the residence, a mother and three young children, escaped the house unharmed.

"A special thanks to Deputy Chief Martin Freibergs of the Hales Corners Fire Department, Jim Gilboy of the Hales Corners Police and Fire Commission, and Village Trustee Don Schwartz who came together and gave a great deal of assistance to the family," said Landry. "The Allen family would also like to extend their appreciation to the Hales Corners Fire Department and to the community for their assistance in their time of need."

Donations of cash and gift cards can be made at Associated Bank, 10708 W. Janesville Road, addressed to the Allen family.

Questions can be directed to Officer Justin Landry at (414) 529-6140, or by email at

Greendale School District 'climate' recognized

Greendale - The Greendale School District received accolades last month by the McCormick Foundation for its exemplary commitment to "school climate."

In a blog on the foundation's website, resident scholar Shawn Healy wrote that a positive school climate is as important as academics in preparing young people "for their role as citizens in a democracy."

Members of the foundation recently visited the Greendale district and made the connection between its climate and academic success, noting that "Greendale students test better than their demographics would predict, and the racial achievement gap is among the lowest in Wisconsin."

Healy also wrote that the secret of Greendale's success was that "Superintendent William Hughes hires student-centered school leaders and staff with a commitment to civic learning."

Additionally, the blog said the district has ongoing professional development opportunities for teachers, that principals know each student by name and that faculty focuses on development of the whole child.

The Chicago-based Robert R. McCormick Foundation's mission is to develop citizen leaders. With more than $1 billion in assets, it is one of the nation's largest foundations.

Nominations sought for Oak Creek Citizen of Year

Oak Creek - Nominations for this year's Oak Creek Citizen of the Year award are now being sought.

The annual award is given to those who live or work in the city - an individual, couple or group - who have demonstrated a commitment to making the community a better place to live. Accomplishments or involvement in the categories of civic, social, welfare or education will be considered.

All nominations, due March 23, must include an attached statement describing the community involvement, including the names of groups and organizations served, a description of the activity and accomplishments of the nominee, and how those activities have benefited the community.

For more information, including nomination forms, call the Oak Creek Community Center, (414) 768-5840.

Greendale students to serve on FACT board

Greendale - Two Greendale High School students, Brittany Schultz and Gibby O'Keefe, have been chosen to be on the FACT youth board.

FACT, an acronym for Fighting Against Corporate Tobacco, is Wisconsin's youth-driven program to prevent the use of tobacco.

As FACT board members, Schultz and O'Keefe will recruit new members, implement activities, meet with local elected officials in Greendale and Madison, and help create a public education campaign that will expose how the tobacco industry uses colorful packaging and candy flavoring to sell their products.

FACT is part of the Department of Health Service's statewide tobacco use prevention efforts and is locally coordinated by Greendale School District's Greendale Assistance Program Committee and the Greendale Health Department. Since FACT began in 2001, the smoking rate among state high school students fell by 46 percent.

For more information, visit


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