The Bangart family photo shoot. Nicole and Brady are on the right.
Brady Kees is doing something special to memorialize his late girlfriend Nicole Bangart, a 2010 Chilton High School graduate and straight-A co-salutatorian. Five years after her tragic death, Brady and Nicole’s mother Cindy have created a scholarship fund as well as a donor advised fund in her name.
“I was Nicole’s longtime boyfriend or soon to be fiancé, and her family – especially her mom Cindy – always made me feel like a part of the family,” says Brady. She still does. The two tossed around the idea of establishing a scholarship fund, saved their money, and established the fund when the timing was right to turn this sad loss into something good to benefit students in the future.
“I was the recipient of high school scholarships through the Community Foundation and I’ve seen their stories of grants to the performing arts, so it made sense for Cindy and I to team up with this experienced local partner to honor Nicole,” says Brad. “Nikki was ambitions, smart and creative, and even though she worked hard she always made time for the people she loved and for her animals. She taught us to cherish the time we have today.”
Nicole majored in animal science and was a member and officer of the Association of Women in Agriculture. Brady and Cindy established a second designated fund, the Nicole Bangart AWA Memorial Fund, for UW-Madison students majoring in agriculture.
She and Brady met while in high school band. Nicole was also particularly passionate about performing and visual arts. Nicole performed in plays and musicals, was an avid reader and piano player, and loved to help out on her family’s farm.
Graduating seniors from Chilton who are pursuing a four-year degree in agriculture or visual/performing arts can apply for a $500 Nicole Bangart Memorial Scholarship within the Chilton Area Community Foundation, our affiliate partner.
Apply for other scholarships via our Scholarship Portal.