Jack Rhodes changed Waupaca
By Tim Neuville, Waupaca Area Community Foundation
Every now and then your community may be fortunate enough to welcome a person who changes the face of your town. Waupaca had exactly that happen to it when, about 20 years ago, Jack Rhodes and his wonderful wife Glenda chose Waupaca.
He was retiring as Dean from the University of Miami Ohio-Hamilton and did some research where he and Glenda wanted to retire. They chose Waupaca. Within just a few years Jack joined and became president of Rotary, joined the Waupaca Chamber of Commerce and became a member of its Board, started a regionally recognized bridge club, joined the Waupaca Historical Society, and later served on the Board of the State Historical Society.
He also joined a task force that started the Waupaca Area Community Foundation in 2003 and served as chairman for the first 10 years and remained on the Board until his passing. He probably never imagined that this foundation would grow from nothing to over $8 million dollars in less than 20 years while giving more than $5 million to wonderful projects and education grants to benefit the area over that same timespan.
I mention all these accomplishments, but the most enduring features of Jack were his love of God, family, friends and life. Jack made everyone feel important and loved, always displaying patience when sometimes others of us may not have. He was very intelligent, quick witted, had a great sense of humor, and was humble to the core.
Jack will be missed by so many but never forgotten. Waupaca is a better place because Jack and Glenda chose us; how lucky we all were!
Jack, 80, died of natural causes on Monday, October 10, 2022 (Obituary here). In addition to his involvement in the Waupaca Area Community Foundation, Jack served on the Board of the Community Foundation, including as Board Chair.
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