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Lifelong Educators' Gift to Benefit Rush City Schools Forever


[HUDSON, May 20, 2024] – Throughout their decades-long careers as educators, John and Evelyn Erickson gave countless hours of care and support to students at Rush City Schools. Both taught for the school district, where John was also a beloved coach. After Evelyn’s death in 2022, the Rush City Education Foundation (RCEF) learned that the Ericksons had another gift for Rush City Schools: a $200,000 bequest to support students and teachers in the district.


Earlier this year, the RCEF used $100,000 of the gift to establish the John and Evelyn Erickson Bequest Fund at St. Croix Valley Foundation (SCVF). Established as an endowed fund, the Erickson Bequest will be professionally invested by SCVF, and RCEF will be able to make annual grants from the fund’s earnings starting as early as next year. In addition to the Erickson Bequest, SCVF has stewarded another endowed fund for RCEF since 2013: the Rush City Education Foundation Endowment Fund.


“We are honored that the Rush City Education Foundation chose us to steward the John and Evelyn Erickson Bequest,” said Heather Logelin, SCVF President and CEO. “We are passionate about ensuring that all students have access to exceptional educational programming and opportunities. This generous gift will make sure that happens in perpetuity for the students of Rush City.”


RCEF President Vern Koepp, who worked as a principal at Rush City Schools where Evelyn was a first grade teacher, remembers the impact both Ericksons had on students and colleagues.


“Evelyn was such a genuine person, who loved working with young children,” said Koepp. “She had a good sense of humor and was such a cheerful person. John had a big impact in the High School, serving as the guidance counselor, and he was a great coach.”


While the portion of the Erickson Bequest used to establish the new fund will support future grants to the district, the other $100,000 was designated for current grants and has already allowed the district to purchase a kiln for the high school arts department, new age-appropriate reading materials at Jacobson Elementary, and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Carts for both upper and lower grades at Jacobson Elementary. Koepp is excited that the newly endowed John and Evelyn Erickson Bequest Fund will support annual scholarships for graduating seniors in the district forever.


About Rush City Education Foundation - The Rush City Education Foundation (RCEF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the purpose of enhancing educational opportunities for students of Rush City Area Schools – in the classroom and beyond – and encouraging them to achieve excellence. RCEF’s mission is to promote and enhance student achievement and invest in educational excellence.

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