September 30, 2014

A Heartwarming Story from Rapid City, SD

Dayna Dyce
Dayna Dyce graduated from Rapid City Stevens High School in May 2014. She worked hard at her full-time job this summer, preparing for college at DSU in the fall. After all of her hard work, she wanted to donate part of her summer earnings to charity. 

Her proud father proposed a challenge.  He matched her contribution of $100 and asked a handful of others in the Rapid City Community to do the same.  This is how $1,175.00 was raised recently for the Joe Welke Scholarship of Honor.

Joe Welke
Joe was a 2003 graduate from Stevens High.  While in high school, Joe played football and earned the Greater Dakota Conference All Conference and Honorable Mention All State honors as a senior.  He enjoyed riding his motorcycle, hunting, fishing, weight training and cars.  Joe was proud to be a United States Marine.   His coach, Joel Hybertson stated, “If we need someone for our Country, I want someone like Joe Welke.  Sadly, Joe was killed in Iraq on November 20, 2004. 

The Joe Welke Scholarship of Honor has been awarded at Stevens High School since 2007 to a graduating senior who makes a true difference in this world. For more details, please visit:  Joe Welke Scholarship of Honor website

September 12, 2014

Connections Across the Globe

The Weyers Family Foundation has sponsored the Poland Scholarship since 2005. Renata Bruzdziak received our scholarship twice through the Weyers family.

Renata was accepted for the Polish-American Internship at Citigroup in New York City for the summer. She enjoyed the experience very much and a few weeks ago had the opportunity to meet some of the Weyers Family during their visit to NYC!


They had brunch at Tavern on the Green and then took a walk through Central Park. We love when worlds connect, like they often do, through Brian's Foundation!

Brian's Foundation has awarded over 65 scholarships to the students in Poland since we collaborated with the Nidzica Foundation more than a decade ago. It has been a joy!

This past Saturday, was their special presentation ceremony in Nidzica. The generous annual sponsors of the Poland Scholarship sponsor 2 students each year, with a $1000 each...truly life changing for their education. The recipients also received a special engraved Scholarship of Honor medal that hangs from a white ribbon to symbolize international peace.


Dr. Michael and Susan Smullen Family Sponsored: 

Krzysztof Szczephkowski- You will see an update from him below! Applied Linguistics, University in Gdansk, 4th year (they sponsored him last year, as well)

Aleksandra Magdalena Bojanowska, The Medical University in Bialystok Medical Analitics, 1st year.

The Weyers Family Foundation Sponsored:

Małgorzata Młyńska--Environmental Protection, University of Warsaw, 5th year. (they sponsored him last year, as well)

Tomasz Pisarski, The Warmia and Mazury University in Olsztyn, Economics, 3rd year

The Robert and Darlene Nueske Family Sponsored:

Daniel Traczewski: Economics/Finance and Accounting/Computer Science and Econometrics, University in Warsaw4th year (you sponsored him last year, as well)

Natalia Dawidczyk, The Warmia and Mazury University in Olsztyn, Economics, 1st year

August 28, 2014

Our 2014 Scholarship Recipients Thank YOU!

“I would like to express how thankful and how very honored I am to have received a scholarship from this foundation.  I will be pursuing a secondary education degree for social sciences at UW-Whitewater.  I can’t send enough thanks for the contribution to my education and goals of changing the world through teaching."

Shae Scharther, 2014 Jesse Thiry Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor: Whetter Law Offices



“I am really honored to get this scholarship. In reading Brian’s story he seems like a person I would of hung out with. I look up to Brian LaViolette because it shows me that you need to live life to the fullest and appreciate every second. I think that he did that, and that’s why I am honored to receive this scholarship. Thank you very much.

--Tyler Fisher, Journey is the Reward Scholarship-Suring High School
Sponsor: Sue LeTourneau



This scholarship means a lot to me because Ryan risked his life to help others and although I will not be joining the military, I too wish to follow his dream of helping others. This money is going to help me pay for my college tuition, so I can follow and pursue my dream of becoming a nurse. I greatly appreciate everything this foundation is doing for all the students they support. I truly feel lucky to have received this reward.”

--Mercedes Dumas, Ryan Jerabek Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor: Premier Community Bank




“ I am humbled to have been recognized on behalf of Brian and LTG Robert Foley. Following in their footsteps will be a difficult journey, but their inspiration is leading me down the path to do all that I am able to help and assist those around me.”

--Charles Whitaker, 2014 Robert Foley Scholarship of Honor recipient
Sponsor: Brian LaViolette Foundation




"This scholarship is a blessing for me. It means a lot because it will help me with college and support my dreams to come true. Getting this scholarship is a great honor. Thank you.

--Phouthasone Sayarong, Andrew Brownfield Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor: Omnova Solutions Foundation




“Receiving this scholarship helps me fund my college expenses and can help me get one step closer to become a special education teacher. I want to help kids grown in their education and develop with their disability. I just want to make kids happy and enjoy life and learning.

--Mackenzie Busch, John Bradley Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor: Weyers Family Foundation





“To receive the Brent Vroman Scholarship is an honor to know I’m following in the footsteps of other great men and woman who served this country.  I’m very proud to have received it and I plan on using it as I attend UW Milwaukee and participate in the NROTC program at Marquette University.”


-Haley Garvens, 2014 Brent Vroman Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor: John and Kathy Lochner Family


“I am so honored to receive the Kyle Hemauer Scholarship of Honor. This scholarship will assist me in furthering my education and eventually entering the medical field. Thanks to the Brian LaViolette Foundation and the Hemauer family I will be able to achieve my life goal of helping others.”

--Marcus Wise, Kyle Hemauer Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor: Community of Chilton




There are so many words that come to mind when I think of Brian’s Foundation. The love expressed through Rachel Bosveld’s parents with the gift of their scholarship assistance and the endearing story of Brian will forever be a part of my own “story” as I chart my path to becoming the best registered nurse I can be. I choose the word “Gratitude” for helping me with my journey.

--Kelsey Thompson, Rachel Bosveld Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor: Bob and Darlene Nueske



“I cannot thank you enough for the generous scholarship and beautiful medal you have gifted me! With this scholarship I have the funds to accomplish so much in my college career, and for that I am wholly thankful. I am honored to have had my accomplishments recognized and my hard work rewarded in the way that this scholarship has recognized and rewarded me. Thank you again and again-the James Cathey Scholarship of Honor you have given me is a gift that I will make sure to put to good use.

Thank you for being so generous and for sharing the memory of Brian LaViolette and Lt. James Cathey with me.”
--Christiana Karcher, James Cathey Scholarship of Honor recipient
Sponsor: Remembering the Brave Foundation





“First of all it was an honor to receive this scholarship, especially knowing the meaning behind it. This scholarship will not only help me to further my studies but to continue to participate in volunteering through my future schooling. Ultimately preparing me for a career oriented towards helping and serving others.”

--Peggy Campbell, Mike Colalillo Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor: Guy J. and Karen R. Smith



“I’d like to start off with a huge thank you to yourself and the Brian LaViolette Scholarship Foundation for choosing me as the recipient for the Esther Cleveland Safford Scholarship. Receiving this scholarship was a great honor and privilege to me. I greatly appreciate that you have chosen me to receive this scholarship.
 
--Samantha Beekman, Recipient of Esther Cleveland Scholarship
Sponsor: Victoria Parmentier



“This scholarships means that I have a name to live up to. I hope to bring great honor and pride to Elmer Burr and Ken Stumpf.

--Nathan Hutter, Ken Stumpf and Elmer Burr Scholarship of Honor recipient
Sponsor: Guy J. Smith, Suburban Electrical Engineers/Contractors Inc




“I would like to thank the men and women who have given their lives for the freedom and liberties I am able to possess. I am honored to receive this scholarship to pursue a career in the pharmaceutical field in order to serve my community.”
--Claire Gray, Jerome Hatfield Scholarship of Honor
Sponsor:  Endowment Drive Underway



“Thank you so much for choosing me to be your scholarship recipient. I am currently attending nursing assistant classes and I am also enrolled in LPN course for the fall of 2014 at the College of Menominee Nation. This scholarship will help me out a ton! Thank you so much.”

--McKenna Pyawasit, Ollie Bogsted Scholarship recipient
Sponsor: Family of Ollie Bogsted



“Thank you again for this opportunity and your generosity towards my further education. I am eager to enter the college of Liberal Arts at the U of M in the fall. My family and I eternally grateful to you for selecting me for your scholarship. I am determined to succeed in school and do my best to make a difference in the school system and the in many students’ lives.

--Shaina Dodson, Ben Edinger Scholarship of Honor recipient
Sponsor: John Maino and Nick Show and Friends and Family of Ben Edinger



“This scholarship means a lot to me, much more than you’d normally expect. I’m extremely grateful and honored to be receiving this scholarship. It means even more because I received it based on my school involvement rather than athletic or academics”

-Blake Champshare, Above and Beyond Scholarship
Sponsor: Sue LeTourneau




“This scholarship opens a new chapter in my future that allows me to make a difference in the animal community and influence future generations that you can achieve goals you set for yourself”

--Katy Koeppel, Nueske Family Scholarship of Excellence-Veterinarian Medicine
Sponsor: Nueske's Applewood Smoked Meats





“Receiving the Danny Dietz Scholarship of Honor means more to me than anyone will ever know.  I’m forever thankful to the Brian LaViolette Scholarship Foundation for giving me the opportunity to venture into college and start the life that I know is destined for me.  The financial burdens of college are lessened with the help of the Scholarship Foundation and I’m very grateful. 

The scholarship not only provides financial help, but also support from amazing people throughout my journey to become a caretaker.  The family of Danny Dietz continually inspires me not only with their kindness, but also in their knowledge that people can change the world, like their son. 

Danny Dietz is a hero who supported his country in a very important and real way and I ‘ll be lucky if I’m to ever life up to his reputation.  His dedication and courage will forever remind and encourage me to help the world and my country by become a doctor and helping the communities around the world.”

-Michelle Mai-Danny Dietz Scholarship of Honor recipient
Sponsor: The Mader Family and the friends and family of Danny Dietz





July 23, 2014

Door County resident Bill Welter has joined the our Advisory Board.

"I was impressed with the Brian LaViolette Foundation,” Bill Welter said., “To tragically lose a child who had so much potential to do good in life and see how this family has literally poured their life into doing something good in Brian’s memory, is to me what life is all about.”
Welter may be best known for being the driving force behind the one of the most memorable advertising campaigns in history, “Where’s the beef?” for Wendy’s.
He has been in marketing for much of his career. He has earned three CLIO international marketing awards and has chartered new avenues of promotion and public relation success in the competitive restaurant market.
He is the founder of Santa Silent Helpers and is actively involved in his church and other community efforts, including the Door County Humane Society and the Third Avenue Playhouse board in Sturgeon Bay. He also serves on the board of an Internet startup, Celebrating Legacy. Welcome aboard Bill!

July 9, 2014

56 Journeys

Over the years, we all have learned that ONE person can truly make an impact out there, influence those they meet and inspire others in the endeavors they choose to be a part of.



As a Foundation, we are assisting 56 students this year on their journey. Those 56 individuals are from varying cultures, have different family backgrounds, unique dreams and have set out to make a difference in this world. 

If one person can make such an impact, just think what 56 offer this world! 

As a 'Foundation Family', we are ALL a small part of the following journeys. 

Our 2014 scholarship recipients shown in bold. (in order of presentation date)

Joel Gentz Scholarship: Charles Logsdon, United States Air Force

Sal Giunta Scholarship: Shelby Chostner, Nursing

General George S. Patton Scholarship: Barbora Petermannova, Nursing

Matt Atkinson Community Scholarship: Emily Whitston, General Studies

Joe Welke Scholarship: Chassandra, Marine Corps

Ron Sager Scholarship:  Sara Riehle, Nursing 

Victoria Parmentier Scholarship: Carleigh Sachs,Education

Rachel Bosveld Scholarship:  Kelsey Thompson, Nursing 

Kyle Hemauer Scholarship: Marcus Wise, Pre-med

Jerome Hatfield Scholarship: Claire Gray, Pharmacy  

Andrew Brownfield Scholarship:  Phouthasone Sayavong, Education

Isaiah Hunt Scholarship:  Andrew Wojkiewicz, Marine Corps

Danny Dietz Scholarship: Michelle Mai, Pre-med

Robert Foley Scholarship: Charles Witaker, United States Army

Len Keller Scholarship: Raven Wainwright, Pharmacy 

Brian LaViolette Scholarship: Kelly Szczepanski, Nursing

Ellsworth-LaViolette Scholarship: *first annual presentation 
    Brady Blasher, Agriculture
    MacKenzi Krieger, Physical Therapy
    Cheyenne Paulson, Classical Archaeology
    Japheth Willmore, Physical Therapy

Ryan Jerabek Scholarship: Mercedes Dumas, Nursing

Ben Edinger Scholarship: Shaina Dodson, Education

John Bradley Scholarship: Christian J. Filipiak, Physician's Assistant 

James Cathey Scholarship:  Christiana Karcher, Pre-med

Brent Vroman Scholarship: Haley Garvens

Jesse Thiry Scholarship:  Shae Schartner, Education

Ken Hess Scholarship:  Ashleigh Parton, Nursing

Ollie Bogsted Scholarship: McKenna Pyawasit, General Studies

"The Journey is the Reward" Scholarship: Tyler Fisher, General Studies

NWTC Scholarship-Suring High School: Jacquelyn Lenz

Ken Kubsch Scholarship: Michaela Schmidt,  Nursing

Eric McColley Scholarship: Dakota Peterson, Criminal Justice

Nichole Frye Scholarship: Olivia Storm, Criminal Justice 

Nueske Family Scholarship of Excellence: *first annual presentation 
    Katelyn Koeppel, Veterinarian 
    Brendan Lehman, Pharmacy

Above and Beyond Scholarship: Blake Campshure, Engineering

Esther Cleveland Safford Scholarship: Samantha Beekman, Education

Robert Safford Scholarship: Conner Moe, Business and Finance

"The Journey is the Reward" Scholarship: Kyle Krueger, Pre-med

NWTC Scholarship-Oconto: Carli Meyer, Graphic Design

Mike Colalillo Scholarship: Peggy Campbell, Nursing

Ken Stumpf-Elmber Burr Scholarship: Nathan Hunter, United States Army

South Africa Scholarship: Brian Ntshikila, Teaching  

Tom Hudner: To be awarded in August

Nainoa Hoe Scholarship: To be awarded in August

Poland Scholarships (6 students): To be awarded in September

St. Norbert Scholarships (4 students): To be awarded in October 

Junior Achievement-Awarded during Business Challenge to Amanda Charles in February